May 31, 2012

they just make you say, "aww"

I had just gotten home from a walk with the dog while I was at the lake. Ebony [she's the dog] is out of shape, so our 3-mile jaunt had her exhausted, but she went cray-cray when we walked up to the house?

What was this?

OH, hello there.
Then this guy popped up from behind.
Yeah, these little rascals were really cute. Cute enough to put in your pocket.
Or try to feed marshmallows.
But not cute enough to keep.
DSC_0358.JPG DSC_0358.JPG
DSC_0358.JPGBe free little ones, be free! And stay out of our garbage!

May 30, 2012

Thus continued my vocational listening, part 2

Part 1: HERE
I thought I'd give you some pictures, this time. (-:
tour guide.jpg
I graduated from college in 2005. A list of jobs and locations since then:
  • May-October 2005, Fort Wayne, IN
    • Panera Bread Co.
    • Crossroads Children's Home
  • November-December 2005, McPherson, KS
    • Para-educator
  • January-June 2006, Chicago, IL
    • Borders book store
    • Curves Fitness for Women
  • July 2006-May 2008, McPherson, KS
    • McPherson College
  • June-August 2008, traveling here and there, went to Europe for a month 
  • September 2008-May 2011, Durham, NC
    • massage school 
    • Elmo's Diner (for about 2 minutes 3 months) 
    • UNC-Chapel Hill (11 months)
    • Massage Envy (1 1/2 years)
  • June-July 2011, Ashland City, TN
    • Volunteered with BDM
  • August 2011-current, Fort Wayne, IN 
    • Spiece Day Spa
Does that seem like a lot in seven years? 
Between my moving and other experiences I had my random list of things I love:
-musical theatre
-choral music
-health care
-building relationships
-student development
-alternative medicine
Not included in this is all the frustration and anger involved in feeling like I don't know what to do vocationally. I have always felt like I'm moving forward. I'm not lost, but I don't have the fulfilling experience of really finding the spiritually, life-giving, passion-filled life I want.

All I want is a tour guide [God] to straight-up tell me where to go and what to do.

At least I think that's what I want. I'm pretty sure that's one of those sounds-better-in-theory things.
tour guide.jpg
Last year when I went for my interview for a grad program in Indiana, I was left with an icky feeling in the pit of my stomach. But I felt this curious longing that I was supposed to go to a nursing program.

WHAT was THIS?!? I went back to NC and told my friend, Theresa, and she said "I think you should listen to that."

Did I? Nope.

I didn't go to that program, maybe the icky feeling was just that that school wasn't right for me? I didn't want to read my somatic feelings incorrectly. [Please note the sarcasm directed to myself.]
tour guide.jpg
SOOO, I applied for another grad program in student development. As I was wrapping up my application, I was really feeling on the fence about it. Then I turned it in. I felt more on this side of the fence. This side is the non-student development side.
tour guide.jpg
After receiving the information that I was invited for an interview, I really knew that I shouldn't go.
tour guide.jpg
Did I listen to that?
tour guide.jpg
Oh, no I didn't. 

I went to the interview where about 100 other people were applying for the same program. I interviewed with four potential grad school assistantships, I interviewed for the program and I left. Did I feel excited? No. Did I feel the desire to really go to this program? No. Did I want to live in their housing? Yes, yes I did.
tour guide.jpg
Luckily I'm not in charge, and I didn't get in. I had told myself that I would be done pursuing student development if I didn't get in.

See, this nursing thing, it keeps coming up.
1. As a 6-ish year old, I told everyone I wanted to be a "baby nurse."
2. When I was graduating from HS, I remember being really jealous of the students going into nursing programs. I didn't know what that was, I thought it was because they seemed to have a clear career path.
3. My internship my senior year of college was at a hospital with case managers, who are nurses. I ended my internship and told my academic advisor [we were fairly close] that going to school to become a nurse was on my mind. He said that I should look into pursuing that.
4. I LOVE giving pre-natal massage.
5. When I came out to IN to stay with my cousin's after my aunt's surgery, she asked me if I had ever thought about nursing. I don't know if she even remembers this since she was in a bit of a medicine-induced stupor as most post-surgical patients are.
6. When I visited the first IN program for student development, the other program in the shared office space was for nursing. The man conducting my interview told me about a student who had left the student development program for the nursing program. Why would he tell me that?
7. I mentioned midwifery to a friend and she didn't even blink. "Yeah, you should totally do that."
8. As I was coming to these conclusions, another friend randomly just looked at me and said, "you should be a midwife." 


So, I'm going to give God a little credit in all of these seemingly random [but totally not] points of nursing coming up in my life.

I think I should do it.


May 29, 2012

Thus began my vocational listenings, part 1

**I'll warn you now, this will be full of words. If you're looking for picture-laden posts, click on an old one. (-:
Did you know that for my 14th birthday I got my favorite surprise for my birthday? My family was driving up to Manchester College for a hall of fame dinner and we took a pit-stop in Chicago to hello to my grandparents since they were there for an overnight trip. The family was packing up to leave and my mom took my bag out of the back and said "You get to stay here tonight." 

I GET TO STAY!??! IN THE BIG CITY!?!?! AND I GET TO SEE JOSEPH AND THE AMAZING TECHNICOLOR DREAMCOAT!!?!?!? [which I had already memorized by listening to the cassette tape over and over and over the year prior] STARRING DONNY OSMOND?!?!?! [who wore an inexcusably bad wig, but I'm still to this day smitten by his voice] AND EAT DINNER AT LOWRY'S?!?! [Probably my first super-fancy dinner and I got to get dessert too! A chocolate box with white-chocolate mousse and fresh berries. Yes, I remember.]

Thus began my love affair with musical theatre. 
My junior and senior years of high school, I auditioned for district and state choir. I spent most of high school choir lusting after older boys durning the morning detentions I received from Mr. Latimer for talking during women's choir time. I was a bit chatty. So, I didn't really take myself very seriously in choir. I only went to the morning rehearsals to learn the audition music so I could spend some extra time with my friends. 

Surprisingly [seriously, I was SHOCKED] I got in! I remember being so surprised and excited that I was literally shaking with adrenaline. What, the what? eeeeeeeee!

Then I went and oh.em.goodness. I was singing with an 8-part choir with about 20-people in each section and EVERY PERSON knew his or her part. And the male voices! Oh, to sing with good tenors and basses! *swoon*

Thus began my love with really good choral singing. 
When I was a junior in high school I tore my ACL playing basketball. My left knee took me out of playing basketball and track my junior year, so since I wasn't in season I got to go on my first BIG TRIP to San Juan, Puerto Rico. 

I went with my church and we did some construction, but mostly I assisted the two doctors [Paul and Marla] who were with us and I took temperatures, weights and measurements of lots of children and adults. I got to sit in the room as Marla asked questions to patients. I got to take rectal temperatures of babies after Paul showed me how to accomplish this task [quite glamorous, no?]. 

I also swam in the ocean, tried out my mad Spanish skills [they no longer exist], and reveled in the beauty of the small island. 

Thus began my love affair with health care.
Thus began my love affair with traveling. 
Twice in college, I applied for programs through the Lilly Grant Pathways program at Manchester. The summer of my sophomore year I went to France and Switzerland for two weeks. The summer of my junior year I went to Reno, NV for ten weeks at a BVS site working with recovering drug addicts. 

We had to read Let Your Life Speak by Parker Palmer. It messed my life up. Vocation, what?? 

Thus continued my love affair with traveling. 
Thus began my love/hate affair with listening and exploring my calling. 
Thus began my love affair with building relationships. 
After college, I applied and got a job at McPherson College [sister school to Manchester] as a resident director. 

The first year, I worked with students as RAs and with student activities. I was so busy, but I enjoyed working with students. I got to be creative. I got to build relationships. I got to be on an academic calendar *sigh*. I got to live in a dorm. I got to bake for students to seduce them into spending time with me. I got to be available for emotional and physical crises.

The second year, I stepped into a leadership role with the other RDs. I'll just say I wasn't mature or educated enough to be successful in that role and I needed some major hand-holding. Never-mind the fact that I don't want to be told what to do and Im' naturally stubborn. This was probably the most difficult year I've been through. The frustration sucked all the joy out of the parts I should have enjoyed. 

Thus began my love of baking for people. 
Thus began my debate over student development and my future. 
When I moved back to McPherson and had no friends, MegB stalked me and we socialized over coffee. 

Thus began my love affair with coffee. 
I bought my first digital camera. 

Life was never the same. 

Thus began my love with photography. Or at least taking pictures. (-:
Massage, massage, massage: it's changed my life. Totally, completely, surprisingly--I am changed. 

Before I went to massage school I made a visit to Arizona and toured a school there. I knew that I was NOT into energy work. I was NOT going to be kooky. I do NOT want to make contact with your chakras. 

Then I found BTI and I didn't have to do those things. I was introduced to the concept of stirring the depths of a person by touching the surface. I bought into the emotional benefits of massage as well as the physical benefits, mostly because I lived it. 

*I should talk more about this. I feel like I have lots to say. Feel free to hold me accountable to that.*

Thus began my exploration of alternative medicine. 
Thus continued my love with health care. 

The non-inclusive things I love learning about and doing with my life: 
-musical theatre
-choral music
-health care
-building relationships
-student development
-alternative medicine

So where does that leave me? 

It leaves me loving a lot of random things and not being able to figure out what it all means. WHAT DOES IT MEAN? [double rainbow]


May 22, 2012


Yesterday, I was back at my little apartment. Hallelujah! I don't mind dog-sitting and staying elsewhere, but nothing is as good as your own bed even if your apartment is a hot mess.

Mine is.

My laundry situation is out of control. [Tonight. I had to get quarters so I could take care of business.]

My dishes were piled high in the sink. [They're done now.]

Something was smelling funky. [The dishes?]

My cat was neeeeeeeeedy.
Yeah, he insisted upon touching me while simultaneously giving me the stink eye. Classy, Hanklin, really classy.
These arrived in the mail:
The cutest flowers by bloomies! I ordered them through veryjane. If you're not signed up for veryjane, get on their email list! They do send about 5 emails a day, but it's the inside scoop on craft supplies and small artisans selling their wares at a discount [discounts so they can get their name out! Brilliant!]. While you're at it sign up for GroopDealz and Pick Your Plum. Trust me. If you're only willing to sign up for one, go for veryjane. I just ordered washi tape and a birthday present for someone on there. (-:


It's been slow at work, but I had one massage yesterday. While I was getting ready, the electricians installing new lines in our rooms [We're moving to a new area at Spiece and a chiropractor is moving into our's been a process.] wanted to chat. This guy was asking me questions [because that's what people do when you say you're a massage therapist] and he asked me if I got tips. I said yes. And he said "I thought you probably did because you're pretty." Now, at first I was flattered. Then the feminist in me wanted to tell him, "No, I get tips because I'm a damn good massage therapist."

I just went about my business though. Thinking on my feet is not my strong suit. How does one get faster at witty comebacks?


I've been having a hankering for one of my brother Dave's specialties.
Yeah, he bakes. He's also single ladies, so let me know if you need a hook up. (-;
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Cookie Brittle
[Half recipe]
-1/2 cup Butter
-1/2 cup Sugar
-1 tsp Vanilla
-1/2 tsp Salt
-1 cup Flour
-3/4-1 cup Chocolate Chips

Preheat oven to 375. Combine butter, sugar and vanilla. Add in salt and flour [the mixture will be crumbly] then mix in your chocolate chips. Press into a pan until you have about 1/2 in layer. It doesn't have to touch the edges, you can just make a random shape on a cookie sheet if your heart so desires. Bake for 25 minutes. COOL. You must let this cool. Then you can break it into pieces because it's crisp and yummy. I made mine in a 9" tart pan and scored it when it came out of the oven so I could break it into these wedges.

I only made a half batch because I can't control myself around it. Helloooo sugary, chocolaty, buttery tastiness.


And sleep. Glorious sleep.


May 15, 2012

30x30: May Update

The 30x30, a progress report.
  • Health and Fitness
    • get acupuncture-I would love to get this done, but I'm only going to someone with a referral. Anyone know a good acupuncturist in the Fort Wayne area? 
    • lose 25 pounds-6 pounds to go! 
    • run a 5K-scheduled for July 1, the Color Run in KC
    • run a 10K
    • run the Indy-mini
    • complete a fast-I'm contemplating 2 weeks of completely raw/vegan/clean eating. Any better suggestions? I'm also hoping this can get me my last 6 pounds. Double duty. 
  • Financial
    • invest money into a stock
    • put $3000 in savings and keep it there for 6 months or longer [just noticed the typo in the original document, awesome.]-Now that I know how much money I'm actually making, I'd be happy with $1000 in savings...
    • purchase a car, make payments rounded up to the nearest 100 for 12 months-Car purchased Aug 2011, I have been paying rounded-up payments for 7 months, but it's only $8 extra a month. It feels like I'm cheating on this one. (-: 
  • Academic
    • apply and get accepted and attend a master's program-I applied, I interviewed, I was rejected. I'm ok with it though...I'll update you on life-goals soon. Promise. 
    • learn more about the bible-I'm looking for a good devotional/study that I can do daily. Suggestions? 
    • take a healing touch class
  • Creative
    • get paid to take pictures-I've been paid to take senior pics AND I have my first wedding scheduled in September. Scared and excited! 
    • submit something to be published
    • write 3 chapters for a book
    • sell 10 items on Etsy-I have 3 items done. I haven't felt like sewing/crapfting lately. This will motivate me! 
  • Service
    • become a big sister-I don't know if I can do this...I'll probably only be in Fort Wayne for one more year, is it fair to develop a relationship for a short time?
    • get certified with children's disaster service
    • purchase a heifer from Heifer, International-I'm about 33% there. 
  • Challenges
    • flirt-I have moments...
    • say "yes" to dates-Yup. Awkward? Yup. I'd go on more though. This is the thing: they were "set-ups," so my challenge is to attempt to not seduce someone with my awkwardness [since that doesn't really work] and have them think I'm normal enough to ask on a date on their own. (-:
    • go 4-months without purchasing a clothing item
    • go a month without a cell phone-OK, the debate here is that I'm basically unreachable without my cell phone. SOOOOO, I'm thinking a month of only phone calls. No texting. No smartphone features [Instagram?!?!]. Nothing except the basic, minimal ring-a-ding phone calls. Does that make people feel better? 
  • Travel
    • travel alone
    • go to Canada-Will people flip if I travel to Canada alone? It's just across the border...
    • go to Mexico
  • FUN!
    • grow hair out and donate it-My hair is a little past my shoulders. I've had it trimmed, but it's getting there! 
    • wear make-up daily for a month-I've actually pretty much worn make-up every day [a minimum of mascara] since September. 
    • be in a community musical-Why are you doing Dreamgirls, Fort Wayne Civic theatre?!?! This white-girl needs a show! Cinderella auditions next spring....
    • find a cakewreck, submit it and have it show up on their website-Constantly searching, I think I may have found an acceptable spermy/phallic cake.  
I'm in-progress for a lot of items, but when I created my list I hadn't really considered how much money I would be making or how much I'd be working. I'm actually extending my deadline to November 14, 2013. So before I turn 31, I will accomplish most of my list! 

The financial ones and ones requiring finances [traveling] feel the most unattainable to me. Money blows. I need to have better boundaries with myself about my budget. 

So, what do you think? I'm open to suggestions and assistance to complete my list from anyone. Bring it on! 

May 8, 2012

water, clothes, orange

I'm a water girl.

I'm also a nakey girl. Meaning, I prefer life sans clothing.

One time I spent seven hours at Spa World embracing both of these things. This was during my time in our nation's capitol.
Except when we were in the community spaces and had to wear these awesome orange outfits.
One size fits all.

Would you ever go to Spa World or any place like that?

May 4, 2012

linky list

photo cred: Paper Coterie
    • In other news, for the first time ever I have my mom's birthday AND mother's day gifts ready. Now, the question is, can I get it sent
  • I had never heard of Star Wars Day until today. And I'm still confused as to why. 
  • I am dog-sitting [for the sweetest pup] and they have internet AND Hulu AND Netflix. Holy cow, how do I live without these things? I'm catching up on Glee and Kurt [Chris Colfer] never disappoints. Love, love, love his voice. 
  • I made a new pin board on pinterest: food tour [places to eat someday] thus far it only has 2 places, but I shall find more and someday I'm going to spend a good month eating to my heart's content. *happy squeal* 
    • I will take suggestions of other places. I will recommend TortillaCafe to you
    • Future Husband, Honeymoon idea? I hope you love food as much as I do and we can eat off each other's plates because that's going to happen whether you want it to or not. Love, Future Wife
  • The other day I pulled up to a stop light and saw three motorcycles with a total of five people on them. How many of those people were wearing helmets? ZERO. Yeah, that should be illegal. Idiots. [No links here just an observation and opinion.]
  • I can't stop reading this blog. I love her writing. I love her story. I love that she's not just a pretty skinny girl who promotes eating lettuce. I want to be friends. [I still feel weird about internet friend. I have some semi-internet friends-we only met once, briefly. Sometimes I suffer from social anxiety.] I also want to go on her vacation.
  • Yesterday was beautiful. 
I went for a run. By "run" I mean, I could not get my body to move, so I walked 75% of the time. But I still tuned into a  sweaty beast. [Sometime I'll tell you how much I love to be sweaty. I'm totally NOT being sarcastic.] What did I learn? That some days all I can do is move and that's good enough for those days.
Yes, that is really the color of my skin at that point. No enhancing was used. Just straight up picture of moi and my glistening, reddish/yellowish face.

OK, I think that's all.

Love you people. 

May 1, 2012

for the love of...HANK!

I know, I know...I'm delving into crazy cat lady realm.

my name is hank and I have needs Untitled
Just keep your thoughts in your head, say them to your friends, but don't say it to me. Now that we're on the same page, I will show you Hanklin pictures from the past week.
You payin' attention?
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How do you not love a beast who has unconditional love for you? I can't help it. He just kills me. He wants to be in my lap all the time. He wants to be with me in the bathroom. He wants to be with me in bed. He never wants to be alone.

Separation anxiety, what?!

So when I am home, he's *rightthere*, and I mean all up in my grill.
If by "grill" I mean between my legs.

This might be wrong on so many levels, but his lack of personal boundaries is preparing me for life with children. He paws everything on the "bad touch" list. Freals.

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Plus he's dang cute.

And he'll tell you all about it.

These are all edited on Instagram. [Are you on it yet? Be my friend? nonsensebyamy: find me] I read a tip somewhere that if you change your setting to airplane mode and then process your pictures they'll save to your phone [if you have it set up to save a version to your phone] and you don't have to post them on Instagram if you don't want to. I mean, I could have clogged up Instagram with the Hankers, but I didn't.

I clogged up my blog instead.
You're welcome.

Do you have any good Instagram tips or tricks?


Love this kitty.
Love you people.