Zoology to English

When I was young (I would say about third or fourth grade), I decided that when I grew up, I was going to be a veterinarian. I told everyone this throughout my childhood and teenage years and I entered college with a pre-vet major. And I completed two years of school with studies in the Veteranarian Medicine field.

During my second year of college, I had two roommates who were in the process of applying to vet schools and I saw that it was brutal. On top of that, while I managed to pass my science classes, I was really struggling with just passing the classes. So, it was at that point, I decided to change my major.

Because I didn’t want to waste all of the science classes I had already taken, I moved into the zoology field for a semester and then into education. I finally settled on a degree I enjoyed when I found that I was passionate about my English classes. So, with dreams of becoming an editor at a book publishing company, I graduated with an English degree.

So, seven years of college and four majors later, and what am I doing? I am working at a desk job for a mortgage company. I did work for a magazine publisher when I first moved to Nashville but that company went out of business and I had to find a job to be able to support myself.

And, nine years later, I’m still at that job. Part of the reason I started blogging is so that I would be writing once in a while again and then when I came across the opportunity to blog book reviews, I jumped on it.

It’s crazy where life takes us. When I was in middle school and high school, I never would have dreamed that I would be working in the business class and living in Nashville, TN.

You Can’t Take It With You

Ask any of my friends and you will learn that I move a lot. I am probably a little strange because I like to move. Moviing always feels like a fresh start to me.

In moving, I get to explore a new place. It’s always fun when you find little shops in a new area that are fun to visit. In addition, when you move, you go through all of your stuff and get rid of all of the “junk.” Sure, you do the same thing with a yard sale but I, personally, have a tendency to not put stuff in a yard sale that I would throw away if I were moving.

Often times in life we hold on to things that we should let go of. Yes, sometimes, the things we hold on to would be considered “stuff” but even more often the things we hold on to are memories and more emotional “stuff.” And some of the stuff we hold on to keeps us from making a fresh start.

Last night during my small group study from church, one of the guys said something that has stuck with me and is pretty relevant here. We were talking about whether or not God punishes His children and he was asking the question that if we are not given something that would have been great because of a poor decision we made, aren’t we being punished?

Now, I don’t want to get into the argue about whether or not God punishes us again (we had quite the discussion regarding this) but think about all of the great things that we may miss out on in life because we are afraid or unwilling to let go of the past!!

What are you holding on to so tightly that it is making you blind to the reward that lies ahead if you let go?

X-Cel

Ok, so “x” is the letter I was pretty sure I was going to have trouble with when we finally got here. And here we are. I have consulted the dictionary a few times trying to decide what I was going to post and just could never find a word an “x” word that I was really excited about. So, I decided I was going to cheat a little bit and use a word that just begins with the “x” sound, even though the word actually starts with the letter “E.”

Now that I’ve explained myself, let me get to the actual subject :). There are so many things in life that I would love to excel in but have just never gotten to that next level. What is the motivation behind those people who truly excel in something (whether it be sports, writing, their work or something else).

One area in my life I would truly like to excel is my daily walk with God. There are days I do ok with this but there are days when I really struggle. When my day isn’t going the way I wanted it to or when someone is rude to me at the phone at work. I let it affect my attitude and it can change my whole day.

Every Monday, I am involved in a Bible study with a couple of friends and right now we are studying the book of James. This week we went through chapter three. This is the portion of Scripture that talks about how our tongue steers the entire body (this passage compares the tongue to a bit in a horses mouth and a rudder on a ship). Such small things control very massive objects. I do not excel in controlling my tongue but I sure wish I did!

I would also like to excel in the sports I enjoy. I would love to be competitive in a triathlon or to finish a half marathon in a great finish time. I have never really thought of myself as “athletic” so that may be a mental block I have with working hard to excel in these particular areas.

In fact, I think the reason we don’t excel at certain things in life is because our brains tell us we can’t do it. And I would think that as many times as I’ve been told I am a very determined person (very often, when I set my mind to do something, I am able to accomplish it), I could increase my level of excellence in many areas.

Working for the Weekend

Does anyone else feel like the weekends are always too short? I think three day weekends should become mandatory for all workplaces. It wouldn’t be hard for my company to do. You would just have half the staff work on Monday and have Friday off and the other half do the opposite (work on Friday and get Monday off).

We are a busy society. We fill our schedules too full and then we don’t take time to sit back and relax. I mean I may sit down and watch a movie for two hours but I can’t remember the last time I actually barricaded myself in the house for an entire day and did absolutely nothing. Instead, I spend one day of my weekend running errands and the other day doing chores. And when I’ve actually made plans for the weekend, then I have to try and get both chores and errands done in a day. At the end of the day, all you want to do is fall into bed.

Don’t get me wrong, I love having plans on the weekend. I’m really looking forward to this Saturday when my church body is going to serve twenty families in our community with house cleaning, yard work, car washes and oil changes and childcare. One Great Day is going to be very rewarding for all who are involved. All I’m saying is that I am going to need another day to recover from my weekend!!!

Virginia, Venice, Vienna and Other Places I’d like to Visit

Growing up, most of my family vacations consisted of either drive from Wyoming to Oregon to visit relatives for a week or taking a trip to the woods to go camping. Ok, one year we did take a road trip and hit Disney Land in California and went into Vegas when we were visiting some family friends near there. Let me tell you, there’s not a whole lot to do in Vegas when you are twelve.

When I moved to Nashville, I started taking vacations. These were the type of vacation where you would got to a city you’ve never been to before and explore, visiting the tourist attractions. I love these types of vacations. In the past twelve years, I’ve been to a few places I would have never been to otherwise. I have been to Destin, Panama City Beach and Miami, Florida; Charleston, South Carolina; Memphis and Chattanooga, Tennessee; Little Rock, Arkansas; San Diego, California; and my absolute favorite so far, Chicago, Illinois.

There are still a lot of places I would like to visit in the United States (Washington, DC and New York City come to mind immediately) and I have not yet traveled out of the states, which is a goal of mine. If I could, I would travel all of the time but since travel is expensive, I have to have this pesky little thing called a job so I can finance my vacations. It’s a vicious cycle because you have to work to earn money for vacation but because you are working, you can’t take off at any time, you actually have to request your vacation time.

A friend and I are planning a quick trip to St. Louis next month and I am hoping to get up to Minneapolis sometime this summer to visit a friend up there. My absolute dream vacation would include England, the French countryside (I think I would like to visit Paris but just for a day or two) and Scotland. We’ll see if I get there some day.

So, what is your favorite vacation spot and where would your dream vacation take you?