Monday, January 4, 2010

random thoughts from the last month

Thought #1: Accents. When I went home for Christmas, I noticed everybody's accents more than ever! Also, when I lived in the South, I sometimes said that I didn't think I had an accent. People would say, "You may not notice it here, but you do. If you went somewhere else, they would think you had a southern accent." Well, it turns out, they don't. People often ask me, "How are you from the South and don't have an accent?" I'm not making it up...I hear it all the time.

Thought #2: I don't know how many people actually floss regularly. Maybe I was just behind. Nevertheless, I am very proud to say that I now floss daily and have for a couple months. Haha. I guess that's a small accomplishment and a strange one to share, but I'm happy that I've finally gotten in the habit. It is just a small thing that makes me quite happy.

Thought #3: Well, more a fact than a thought. I finally moved downtown, to the Congress Park area. :o) I no longer live 45 minutes at least from church, but less than 10! So now I can see friends more often, do more fun things, and spend far less money on gas. I'm hoping to have a moving-in potluck next week, so friends can see where I live.

Thought #4: Whole Foods has tuna salad with cranberries. I have never seen that combination before. It is wonderful.

Thought #5: My New Year's Eve did not go as planned. My car died that evening for the third time in about a month or so. I was so bummed because I had really fun plans to meet Brian Elliot (from my Ride:Well Team) and watch fireworks from Pikes Peak, and I couldn't go. After a short pity party, I reluctantly realized that it was a blessing in disguise. As a culture, we are addicted to noise. (If you haven't seen it, you should watch Rob Bell's Nooma video called Noise. You can see it on YouTube right now, but I bet they'll take it down go watch it now.) In the video, Rob Bell says that in 1970-something, to record 60 minutes of pure quiet took 30 hours. Now it takes 2,000 hours. (I might not have gotten that exactly right, but that's at least close if not right.) And it's not just audible noise; it's visual noise, too. I personally like to have music playing all the time. At home in Nashville, I have a shower radio so I can listen to music while showering. Anyway, one of my goals for 2010 was to become more comfortable with silence and solitude. So, the thing I reluctantly realized, was that being alone that night, without even a TV at the house so I could see the ball drop, was perhaps the most appropriate way to start the New Year. Instead of stepping into 2010 accompanied by lots of noise, I entered it quitely in prayer.

Thought #6: I recently saw my favorite ice skating program to date. It's a Sale & Pelletier program to a song called Molly, and it is absolutely breathtaking.

I have many more random thoughts to share, but I will stop here for now. I promise the break until my next post will be shorter this time.

Happy, hopeful New Year!



A Tender Tennessee Christmas is the Only Christmas for Me!

My trip home was so needed and so, so good. My family and friends are so dear to me. I recently wrote that I am obsessed with how amazing they are, and I think that does describe it quite well. Anyway, going home for Christmas was wonderful. Here is sort of a picture story of my time home.

*I got my Dad and brother Colorado bike jerseys for Christmas :)

*I don't have any pictures of this, but I was really happy that I got to cook with Mom some. I also got a lot of cooking gadgets for Christmas. When the tornado destroyed my dorm kitchen almost two years ago, I lost all of my kitchen things I had just gotten for Christmas, and still hadn't replaced them.

*Mom and I also got to spend a day at the mall and Cheesecake factory, one of our favorite things to do when I come home to visit.

*I got to travel to Jackson for a day to see my second family. I love these kids, and I'm so thankful we are still family even though I have moved far away.
*This is Aiden, their new baby. He is precious.
*Jack wanted to go to my ears! Misty said that he loves watching hockey and has mentioned that he wants to play, so she asked me to see what I thought...if he could do it or not. Well, for most of our time skating, he kept falling constantly. I really thought at first that he just seriously could not get it (most kids can get the hang of it after a few minutes). Anyway, I finally figured out that he actually just really liked to fall. He was even trying to make me fall. He could run on his toe picks, too. I think he's just really agressive on the ice, which I guess would make him possibly a great hockey player. :o)
* I got to spend tons of time with Jack, and I LOVED it! I was so spoiled, and I miss him so much already. Isn't he the sweetest? He loves to cuddle still, and I hope it lasts awhile.

*We also had a surprise 80th birthday party for my Dad's Mom, Gigi.

* I also got to spend some time with a couple of my very best friends, Alicia and Katie. The second picture is from when Alicia and I went to Crema and Lacey was working. We were very glad to see her.
* This didn't happen in TN, but I'm going to post it here anyway. Yesterday, Brian Elliot (a teammate from the Ride:Well Tour) came to visit! He was my first guest since living in my new house, and I was so happy to see him!
Basically, it was a very wonderful Christmas.
The end.

Denver v. Nashville

Well, hello friends and family! It's been awhile. Today, a day off from work and most other commitments, is the perfect time to relax my body and mind, and attempt to sum up as much as possible the last month or so of my life. Actually, this blog post would be unbearably long if I tried to pack everything in, so I think I'll just write two or three shorter blogs. I'll write one about random things, one about my trip home, and one about the differences between Denver and Nashville.

The longer I live in Denver, the more I notice the ways it's different from Nashville. Especially since I got to go home for Christmas. Here are some of them:

*There are no bugs in Denver. Okay, at least very few. In Nashville, even the nicest homes will have bugs sometimes. Not in Denver. Not even in old houses. I think I have only seem maybe 3 bugs since I have lived here.

*The types of vehicles people drive are very different. In the South, lots and lots of people have trucks. Guys and girls, young and old. However, when I moved last week to a new home, it was near impossible to find someone with a truck. It was hard even to find someone who knew someone who had a truck. Finally, a guy from work helped me move with his SUV. The car that you see EVERYWHERE here is the Outback. Seriously, they are all over. I guess maybe because they're good in this weather. I'm not sure. But really, the differences in not hard to's pretty extreme.

*Speaking of cars and driving, people drive a lot differently here, I think. A lot more people drive the speed limit on the is not uncommon to drive slow. Also, in my opinion, they seem to be much less huried and anxious. Not to mention, they are much better at driving around cyclists. People in the south are sometimes pretty rude and honk a lot when they drive by. Here, cyclists are everywhere, as are bike lines, so road biking usually much safer.

*This is kind of a random difference, but so weird. For the first couple of months in Denver, I lived with two dogs, one of which was huge! Seriously HUGE! When I went home for Christmas, my dog who I previously thought was a medium sized dog, not too small, felt like a chihuahua! (Is that how that's spelled?) Her face felt so tiny to me. She is the best dog ever.

*There are tons of one-way streets here. I live on one now, actually. Denver roads are bizarre, and you can rarely return the way you came. I think it will take a while to really figure it out.

*My hair is prettier in Nashville...haha. Denver weather does a number on it.

*It doesn't really storm in Denver. It rarely rains. Just snows. So when I recently heard thunder, it startled me more than usual. It used to scare me a lot because of the tornado, but I had gotten over it.

*There are more mountains to be seen here, but more green in Nashville.

I think those are the main things I've thought of.

I like both cities for different reasons. Denver is a really cool place to live, and perfect for training for a cyclist. Nashville, though, will always be my city, my home.