Tuesday, September 13, 2011

live life

makes me think. what am i doing with my life? am i chasing after my goals? will i be able to look back and say i was at my best when i was with those people? will they be the best possible memories i could have had? ill sleep when i die. id rather go tired then miss out on the adventures of life and all that it holds and offers. think about it. go out and explore what's around you. you never know what you might find.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


1) any powerful or compelling emotion or feeling, as love or hate.
2) strong amorous feeling or desire; love; ardor.

I had the ultimate privilege of hearing Sherri Coale speak at an event. For those of you who do not know who that is, she is the head women's basketball coach at the University of Oklahoma. Despite being named Big 12 Coach of the Year, coaching the Sooners to 3 regular season Big 12 Conference titles and bringing a university team back from the depths of losing, she maintains a down-to-earth personality. I've had the opportunity to hear Coach Coale speak on many occasions and she never lets me down. Tonights speech was about passion. 

do you have it? and what's it for?

She continued to tell the audience about her high school years in a tiny town in Oklahoma (with one stop light I might add). She entered her freshman year with three goals in mind; go to the "big house" to play in the state championship, be an all-stater, and receive a full ride for basketball. She posted these three goals on the back of her locker. When she changed her books after english to go to history she was reminded of these three goals. go to state, be an all-stater, get a full ride.

she worked all four years in order to achieve these goals. when her senior year rolled around she waited anxiously in the gym for the rest of her teammates. they continued to board a bus at the back of the school. fully decorated with banners and streamers. they rode through the town with the city people cheering them on to take state. she had reached her first goal.

one down, two to go.

weeks after the championship tournament, she rushed out of her house at 5 a.m. to the local gas station to pick up the paper. tingling with anticipation, she opened to the sports section to see her picture under the all-state recipients.

two down, one to go.

at the end of her senior year she signed with Oklahoma Christian University to play basketball. full ride. 

she told us she was no one special. it was her passion that made her special. she knew what she wanted and what she needed to do in order to accomplish it. 

this is one of the best pictures. coming to a school with a major losing record, (5-22 was their first season with Coale) the future didn't look bright. but Coale had a vision. she knew that her team could do whatever they put their minds to. so they set out. not only did they achieve their goal, they became one of the best teams in the Big 12. 

find something your passionate about and then go after it

never give up fighting for something you truly believe in. don't be afraid to mess up. failure is good in life. when you achieve your goal, its that much better knowing that you had to fight for it.

think of the passion Jesus had. has. for us. for His children. He was willing to take his life so that we may have a better one. now THAT'S passion. a desire so strong that nothing will stand in your way until you've achieved it. think of a goal. write it down somewhere. on your mirror. your ceiling as you lay down at night. planner. back of a school locker. any where that you know you will see every day. let it push you. don;t give up. fight until you've given it everything you can. that's when you've achieved your goal. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

actions speak

just a little story I was sent that I thought we should all enjoy.


I arrived at the address and honked the horn. after waiting a few minutes I walked to the door and knocked...."Just a minute, answered a frail, elderly voice. I could head something being dragged across the floor. 

after a long pause. the door opened. a small woman in her 90's stood before me. she was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie. 

by her side was a small nylon suitcase. the apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. all the furniture was covered with sheets. there were no clocks on the walls. no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. in the corner was a cardboard box filled with photos and glassware. 

"would you carry my bag out to the car?" she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, and then returned to assist the woman.

she took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb. 

she kept thanking me for my kindness. "it's nothing", I told her..."I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated."

"oh, you're such a good boy" she said. when we got in the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, "could you drive through downtown?"

"it's not the shortest way." I answered quickly..

"oh, I don't mind," she said. "I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice. I looked in the rear-view mirror. her eyes were glistening. "I don't have any family left," she continued in a soft voice..."the doctor says I don't have very long.' I quietly reached over and shut off the meter. 

"what route would you like me to take?" I asked.

for the next two hours, we drove through the city. she showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator. 

we drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds. she had me pull up in front a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl. 

sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing. 

as the first hint of the sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, "I'm tired. let's go now."

we drove in silence to the address she had given me. it was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico. 

two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. they were solicitous and intent, watching her every move. they must have been expecting her. 

I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. the woman was already seated in a wheelchair. 

"how much do I owe you?" she asked, reaching into her purse.

"nothing," I said. 

"you have to make a living," she answered. 

"there are other passengers," I responded.

almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug. she held onto me tightly. 

"you gave an old woman a little moment of joy," she said. "thank you."

I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light...behind me, a door shut. it was the sound of a the closing of a life. 

I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly lost in thought. for the rest of that day, I could hardly talk. what if that woman had gotten an angry driver, or one who was impatient to end his shift? what if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

on a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more important in my life. 

we're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments. 

but great moments often catch us unaware-beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one. it's the little things that mean the most. 


I recently saw a t-shirt with the words "actions speak" boldly written across it. nothing else. just those two words. now I've of course heard the phrase "actions speak louder than words", but for some reason this phrase stuck out to me a little bit more. what do my actions say to others? do they say that I'm a college student? do they say that I love my family? do they say that I'm a kind, friendly compassionate woman who is willing to make friends with anyone? do they say I'm a christian? what do your actions say about you? I want people to be able to look back on my life and smile. to think of me and say "now she was a sweet girl". I want to leave a legacy of kindness. change people's hearts. I want people to remember how I made them feel good about themselves. empowered. encouraged. loved. needed. you should never be afraid to stand for something you believe in. you might not know the impact you have on someone's life. 

Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance. 

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

be a romantic.

I refuse to hear the phrase "chivalry is dead". ladies and gentlemen. if you think that quote is correct, do something about it. ATTENTION gentlemen: it is possible to be polite to a woman yet still maintain that ever so important "dude bra"ness. go to her door when you pick her up! surprise her with flowers. tell her she looks pretty. tell her she looks beautiful. remember the little things she says. don't be afraid to be cheesy. not too cheesy, but hey star gazing is fun!

I have a very wonderful friend. he is seriously one of the sweetest boys ever. he probably didn't think anyone noticed tonight how he quickened his pace in order to beat a group of girls to the door so he could open it for them, but I did. "be the change you wish to see in the world". you never know who is watching.

I was riding my bike earlier this afternoon when I realized just how beautiful fall is. I love the crunch of the leaves underneath my tires & the zip of the air in my ears as I cruise down a hill.

People seriously need to take a minute to appreciate life around them. there's too much beauty to just go through life stressed out. I recommend a daily walk. at least 15 min. through a park, campus, neighborhood, whatever is closest! bring a loved one along. you never know what conversation may spark.

I saw a couple walking through the prettiest little hidden passage. They were so cute holding hands and sneaking kisses. best part? they must have been at least 60. I think old people are always so happy because they have finally figured out the secrets of life. SLOW DOWN AND ENJOY!

here's a few easy ways to love life a little more:

-start a leaf collection book. enjoy the beauty of nature. there are so many colors that once you do slow down, its hard not to keep looking.
-take pictures. of everything. your kids. food. nature. friends. yourself. it's okay to be artsy, creative, gutsy, messy. go for it.
-play with children. kids are some of the most creative and fun people around. you'll never be bored because they are always thinking of new fun games!
-do something adventurous. now I'm not saying "go skydiving". just do something spontaneous. take an unplanned car trip. go to the new thai restaurant that you normally would avoid.
-go on a picnic. possibly one of my favorite activities. so fun because it's FREE! crazy I know. but do it. you won't forget it.
-build something. bird cage. lego house. gingerbread house. doesn't matter. JUST DO IT!
-donate. what better way to feel good about yourself and clean out your closet? your local good will, salvation army, thrift store, whatever! CHECK IT OUT!

I recently acquired my mother's old canon camera. I'm especially excited since it's a film camera. really old, maybe not quite vintage, but I love it. I was so excited to go out and use it that I immediately started snapping pictures. anything I could find. people, animals, strangers...but mostly nature. if I might recommend a rather beautiful street in norman it would be Pickard. the trees lean over the street until it looks like they are touching the other side all the way down. I can't wait to see how they turn out. I'll be sure to put them up as soon as I can. while I'm not exactly a professional photographer, it's something I enjoy. go out and do something that excites you. who knows? maybe you ARE a natural skateboarder or a Mia Hamm of soccer skills.

it's not that hard kids. God made life for you to enjoy. don't miss out.

"life moves pretty fast. if you don't stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it."-Ferris Bueller.

love and rockets.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Welcome friends of mine!

What a beautiful day! You know those days when you wake up and you just know that today is going to be wonderful? This is definitely one of those days. Today is fall to the max. I walked to class this morning and was reminded of kamp because of the smell of the air. I think the smell was simply happiness. It's strange how you can have memories like that. So strong from a simple smell or sound. I love it though.

Fall is the best season by far. Even though I always say that about what ever season is currently taking place at the moment. But I love the leaves and clothes and food. Especially the food. Although I absolutely hate the smell of turkey while it's cooking, (because it's like something is dying..) I can't get enough of it at Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving could possibly be one of my top 3 holidays too. What's better than no school, family, food, and stories about last years festivities and how Uncle Joe passed out on the couch from the tryptophan?

My family is so great too. I come from a huge family. One of those families that you're not even sure how you're related, just that you should nod and be polite to one another. My great-grandmother, who we simply refer to as Grandmother, just turned 95 this month. I'm pretty sure this is the 5th year in a row but we'll let it slide.

She's such an amazing woman. She always tells us great-grandchildren of her life as a child. Most incredible thing I've ever heard. Do you think you would be able to deal driving with your family from Oklahoma to Texas without your cell phone or Ipod? What about no air conditioning? No radio? No gas station stops for slushies and beef jerky? What about no car? Just a red covered wagon. She once told the cutest story of her and her sister making chocolate...

 GRANDMOTHER: chocolate was very valuable treat when I was child. It also wasn't so easy to come by. We couldn't simply just go to the store and buy a chocolate bar, we had to make it ourselves. Oh and don't think my parents let us do this whenever we wanted.
QUINCY: so how would you ever get chocolate Grandmother?
GRANDMOTHER: well one time I was left in charge of my sister and brothers while my parents went away for the day. My sister and I decided to be a bit rebellious and so we thought that we would give ourselves a little treat. We gathered all the items necessary to make the chocolate and quickly went to work so as to be done before our parents returned. Sure enough we downed our little snacks just in time to clean up before anyone could know.
QUINCY: was it worth it? did your parents ever find out?
GRANDMOTHER: oh sweetie, your mother will always know what you've done that day whether you believe it not...

fair enough Grandmother, fair enough.

I hope one day I can sit around and tell stories to my great-grandchildren about all my wonderful experiences. I would talk about how the neighborhood kids would get together and play capture the flag until it became too dark to even see each other anymore. And then how we would run back home and eat cookies and fall asleep to nickelodeon blasting through the TV room set. I would tell them about going to my aunt's house for the Fourth of July and tossing eggs back and forth until everyone but the winner's egg had broken. Or putting the Christmas tree up on December 1st and how everyone would talk about each ornament and how they remember making them in elementary school....oh wait that's just me :). I would be sure to mention how the United States came together during an especially hard time of death and confusion on September 11th and how we were able to rise above it. I would say how silly I was for wearing a hot pink jumper to my first day of middle school or for wanting to dye my hair purple..

Children are oh so special and I honestly can't wait to be able to have that joy in my life. Now now don't get too worked up. I certainly will wait until I am happily married. and graduated college. They are so innocent and pure and I think what makes me to emotionally attached to them is their ability to accept anyone. No matter how strange they dress or the odd things they say. As long as they come up with fun games to play during recess and are maybe the second fastest kid in the grade, because they are first of course, it doesn't matter.  Life is too short to judge or exclude others. Be a friend to all. You won't regret it later when you are able to tell your great-grandchildren all the amazing people you met in your life.

all HIS love and mine