Praise God, my coworkers ROCK.

Aside from wanting to fall over and sleep most afternoons this week, I’ve been all smiles every day. I love this place and I’m growing more sad to leave it, but God has been blessing me each day with his goodness!!

I went to the gym after work with two of my coworkers on Wednesday. They recently joined the gym and I could go for free up to three times, so I thought why not?! It’s been freezing cold lately anyway, so I’d much rather run inside! 😉

Well, we had a BLAST.

We ran on three treadmills side by side and I just couldn’t help but smile. We all had our headphones in, doing our own things, but I was overflowing with joy! Here I am, hanging out with these two ladies God brought into my life six months ago. He has surely blessed me through them. I’m pretty sure they have no idea, but they have both taught me to grow in boldness. Those ladies know what they want and what they think.. and they aren’t afraid to share! And because of that, we are always full of laughter. After we did some treadmill time, we went to a “boot camp” circuit class, which was pretty great! Needless to say, all day yesterday we laughed at how sore our bodies felt!

I’ve stayed up way too late most nights this week and haven’t wanted to get out of bed most mornings, but God has filled these days with great joy. He has been showing me all of these little blessings that I haven’t noticed in the day to day bustle of normal life.

I hope you all have a GREAT weekend… I’m excited to pack more boxes and crank out a few ideas that have been stirring in my mind for this little blog. Next week I will be sharing some cool stuff, so you won’t want to miss out 😉

And in case you missed it this week:
here I shared some pretty {unintentionally} controversial thoughts about our marriage
here I wrote about people who encourage me to be more diligent
here I asked for some packing advice… so if you have some, share! I’ll need it this weekend 🙂

On working and work ethic.

Meet my desk chair. Isn’t it great? My co-workers have called it the grandpa chair, but I love it. It’s cozy and has character. I think the pillow helps, too. 😉

Seriously, though, as a recent college grad, I am overwhelmingly thankful for my job. I know the job market isn’t the largest pond around, so I can’t believe I caught something this perfect for me.

As my first “big girl job,” meaning my first 8-5, it has suited me well. I enjoy what I do- it’s very task oriented and I love that! Even beyond enjoying the physical work, I’ve been blessed by some awesome co-workers. I look forward to going into work every day because of them.

Work is a huge part of life–it’s what we will spend roughly 1/3 of our lives doing! Because of that, what we do has defined who we are for quite some time, it seems. At least when it comes to how we view each other. Typical conversations start with, Hey, how are you? And quickly turn into, So what do you do?

I’m learning that my title doesn’t define who I am, but the way I handle myself all day long does. When people ask what I do, I list the various tasks I do often. My job is fairly administrative and extremely random, and I love it! I spend all day attempting to equip the people around me to do the best work they can do. That’s pretty cool.

Because I’ve been thinking about what really defines me, I can’t help but consider my attitude at work. I know that what my title says doesn’t accurately reflect who I am, but how I act and respond to people in day to day life does! It’s easy for me to feel bogged down by all of the tasks I need to check off between 8 and 5. And I let that weight affect how I respond to others. I sometimes feel exasperated when I receive a new request to tack on to the check list, or another random duty to chase down.

But when I remember how much I love helping my co-workers and enabling them to be the best they can be, those negative feelings wash away. More than that, I want to love my coworkers with the love of Christ. I want my love for them to be like God’s unwavering love for all of us. Despite the ways we have sinned against him, he gives us all we could ever need—he has given us the free gift of eternal life through faith in Christ! What a generous and sacrificial gift!

I want to be less negative and quickly frustrated, more patient and sacrificially loving to the people around me at work. I want to equip them to be the best they can be for their own good, my sanctification, and the company’s greater good! And you know what, I’m going to grow and become better along the way, too.

I hope you can enjoy your job today, friends. If you are frustrated, tired, or unhappy, I pray you can find ways to serve and love the people around you today. I pray that for the exact reasons I want to do the same things–for my coworker’s greater good, the company’s overall benefit, and for my own growth spiritually and professionally.

I’m thankful to be at work today! I hope you are, too.

5 Signs you aren’t in College Anymore.

Photo credit to Kate Handzlik.

1. Wearing sweats in public isn’t acceptable. Unfortunately, wearing sweats to class isn’t the same as wearing sweats to your business-casual-attire-only 8-5 job.

2. Your phone ringer is actually turned on. In college, my phone was on silent 100% of the time. I spent too much time in class to mess with it.

3. It’s not acceptable to text people past 10pm… unless they’re still in college, that is.

4. Staying up late isn’t nearly as fun. Unfortunately, work comes at the same early hour every day. And naps aren’t options until after 5. It’s just not the same. Sleep becomes valuable all of a sudden.

5. Your free time is actually free. There’s no impending homework deadline weighing on your shoulders (finally!!).

What about you all? What are some signs you’ve moved into a new life stage?

Happy Monday, all!

on growing up & settling down

I’m realizing more and more that life isn’t so full of drastic changes, as I once thought. Sure, changes can come out of the blue, absolutely! But it’s normal for life to change gradually, like aging, rather than abruptly, like it seems while we’re growing up.

Every year in school my grade changed, my teachers changed, classmates changed, etc. School lasted for 9 months and then quickly changed to 3 months of no set schedule and lots of play time. Just to change right back. Those were changes we always expected.

Now that I’ve graduated college and started a job I really like, life is just….going. We go to work every day, come home and then do some combination of the following: make dinner, hang out with each other, clean up the apartment, do laundry, pay bills, grocery shop, go to bible studies, hang out with friends, and go to sleep just to do those same things tomorrow.

And, while right now it seems as if we do the same monotonous things every day, I know that in a year our lives will look different, but not because we saw it coming. They will look different because we’ve gradually changed and our interests have gradually changed.

There are a few things I know are coming, of course; the things we all expect will come one day. We will probably change jobs, have kids, and maybe buy a house sometime in our futures. We could even move away and start new lives in another town.

But for right now, we don’t see any of those changes coming on the horizon. So we’re just being in our day-to-day lives.

And as much as I miss looking forward to that glorious month-long Christmas Break we had in college… I like that our lives have rhythm. I like that there is comfort in consistency and we’re able to invest in things we once didn’t have time to do. I like that we’re growing and changing and it’s gradual. And I hope that a year from now, we can see tangible fruit from how we’ve sowed our time today.

DIY Flower Pot Pen Holder

Okay friends, I have to admit. I straight up stole this idea from my mom. She has these cute flower pens in her office at work. And, as many of you know, I started my new job last Monday. So all week I’ve been thinking about how to spruce up my little desk. It wasn’t until this weekend that I remembered these cute pens! So I set out to Michael’s and got to work 😉

I chose to paint the rim of my pot to give it a little pizzazz. Plus a girl loves a little sparkle.

While the paint on your pot dries, it’s time to work on your pens! Cut the flowers from their stems near where the stem meets the bud.

You want to leave about an inch of stem so you have some way of attaching the flower to the pen.

Align the flower stem with the pen and begin wrapping the floral tape around both, starting at the top. I went from top to bottom and then all the way back up for added stability.

You can fill your pots with anything–I used those clear, smooth pebbles from the craft store because I had some leftover from a shower I threw in the spring. I think it would be really fun to use coffee beans, though…. it would smell great, too!

And waaalllaaahhh! Your cute flower pot pen holder is ready to take to work or use on your desk at home!

Enjoy and share with your friends!
Happy crafting!!

and another page turns.

I laid in bed last night thinking, “Gosh, wouldn’t it be the coolest thing ever to be a full-time blogger/writer/maker of pretty things??”

Maybe one day that will come to fruition (probably not), but guess what?? I got the next best thing, instead!! I got a new job!!!

Friends, God provides! He does! And he’s faithful even when we are not. Praise him that his faithfulness is not easily swayed, unlike my own. Monday I’m starting as at a new company in Johnson City. It’s a small business that I believe is full of opportunities and wonderful people. At least, that’s the impression I’ve had from my few meetings there.

So, in honor of yesterday being my last day at my old job and Monday the start of my new job, I’m taking today to thank God for his very timely provision.

Blessed be the Lord! For he has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy.
The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;
My heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.
The Lord is the strength of his people; he is the saving refuge of his anointed.
Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!
Be their shepherd and carry them forever.
Psalms 28:6-9

P.S. Check out Nina’s new blog design that I did yesterday!