Thursday, July 30, 2009

3AM Happiness List

A list of things that have brought me happiness lately...

Guiness ice cream from Pied Piper
Random phone calls and texts from Hannah and Caitlin
Getting things ready for the kiddos to come back to school
Meeting Woodrow Wilson George Washington Geheney
Good hugs and mushes
Studies of Psalms and Esther
Listening to Amy practice on her guitar
Summer nights
Heather Doty
Cheekwood expedition
Getting a good amount of sleep in one sitting
Talking to Yankee on the phone
Meeting with a group of girls who truly understand and deserve better
Catching up with the terrific Amy Nelson
Xtranormal movies
Riding motorcycle with Dad and walking around Lipscomb
A picture from Carly Adkins
Dinner on the porch
Amy's amazing skills and cookbook Magic Foods
Beth Neese's smile
Getting photos developed
Brad's ranting
Having Justin home for a solid week
Matt & Kim album
Praying with several different people
Email from Aunt Sue
Random run-ins with people I haven't seen in a long time
My soft blanket
Listening to the rain

Lots of happy things for me to fall asleep thinking about. (3am and couch do not currently equal happiness so I am trying to make it happy.)

Only 2 more days. PRAISE GOD!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Psalm 25

To you, O LORD, I lift up my soul;
in you I trust, O my God.
Do not let me be put to shame,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.
No one whose hope is in you will ever be put to shame,
but they will be put to shame who are treacherous without excuse.
Show me your ways, O LORD, teach me your paths;
guide me in your truth and teach me,
for you are God my Savior,
and my hope is in you all day long.
Remember, O LORD, your great mercy and love,
for they are from of old.
Remember not the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways;
according to your love remember me,
for you are good, O LORD.
Good and upright is the LORD;
therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.
He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.
All the ways of the LORD are loving and faithful
for those who keep the demands of his covenant.
For the sake of your name, O LORD,
forgive my iniquity, though it is great.
Who, then, is the man that fears the LORD ?
He will instruct him in the way chosen for him.
He will spend his days in prosperity,
and his descendants will inherit the land.
The LORD confides in those who fear him;
he makes his covenant known to them.
My eyes are ever on the LORD,
for only he will release my feet from the snare.
Turn to me and be gracious to me,
for I am lonely and afflicted.
The troubles of my heart have multiplied;
free me from my anguish.
Look upon my affliction and my distress
and take away all my sins.
See how my enemies have increased and how fiercely they hate me!
Guard my life and rescue me;
let me not be put to shame,
for I take refuge in you.
May integrity and uprightness protect me,
because my hope is in you.
Redeem Israel, O God, from all their troubles!
-Psalm 25

This passage is one I have been mediating and thinking about for a couple of weeks now. I think it captures many of the things I struggle with as well as things that bring hope.

Sometimes we confuse the words "trust" and "expectations" with God. I have noticed just how much I have come to just expect things from God. There is no form of seeking Him in some matters. Anger forms when I am not given what I expect. Bitterness can even start to creep in. If you ask me though, I would say I was trusting God to provide those things. Trust is different though. Trust is letting go. There is no resentment because with trust, things will come out how they should be. Trust is not easy.

I have always been provided for. Even in the most dire of circumstances in my life, what I need and so much more has been given to me. Why do I have such a hard time trusting?

While talking with some friends, we discussed how to let God have the desires of our heart. As silly as it sounds, most of us agreed that we don't pray for some things because we are afraid it is going to be one of those things we have to chalk up to "God's timing" or "his perfect will". Upon further discussion though, we all realized that eventually those "God's timing" and "his perfect will" things turn out better than we imagined. Once again, why do we continue to assume that we are not going to get the desires of our hearts?

What a devoted writer David was... his struggles, his praises, and his desperation for the Lord.

This is a passage I will continue to think on...

Monday, July 27, 2009

The Need To Be Beautiful

Sometimes a girl just needs to feel pretty... to be told she looks beautiful. Yesterday was one of those kinds of days.

I woke up early, opted on skipping the shower, threw on jeans, white t-shirt, and my Cubs hat. I headed out for my treatment sleepy, but happy because I got to drive through downtown. (I love Nashville.) After getting my room, a nurse came in to get all set up and I pulled off my hat. I went to fix my hair which had been messed up and instead lost some of my hair. It was not like just brushing and losing a few pieces in your brush. I didn't know what to say or do. The nurse turned around and saw me holding the hair. She knew immediately it was a first and flew over to give me a hug.

The radiologist says I might lose more or I might not.

I did not cry. Still have not.

I came home and took one of those showers where you waste so much water because with every spray you think things are going to get better. I needed to feel pretty. I shaved my legs. I put on a new dress. I was careful with my makeup. It did not help though. All day I felt gross. Just blah.

I don't write this for anyone to feel sorry for me. There is nothing to be sorry about. I knew it was a possibility. Instead, I write to process. I feel like I need to have these experiences written... to keep. I write to also say that sometimes a girl needs to feel beautiful.

A Nashville Saturday

Saturday was a beautiful day to play in Nashville!

Our friends Heather and Shannon came in from Memphis to play. Justin and his sister, Janae were also in town. Yea for good people! After figuring out what in the world we should do (apparently Nashville was packed with people who booked up all the places on the General Jackson and the Duck Tours!), we ended up deciding to go to Cheekwood.

It had been many a moon since my last visit to Cheekwood. I was highly impressed with the Japanese garden and the art museum in the main house. Red Grooms, one of my favorite (and local!) artists had many works on display. We walked around the sculpture wilderness trail too. That was a tad disappointing. Overall, a delightful experience and great Nashville thing to do!

A beautiful day is not complete unless there is an ice cream run! We went to our East Nashville favorite, The Pied Piper. The Pied Piper is a local homemade ice cream place that specializes in different flavors. Red Velvet Cake, Tomato Carrot (much, much, much better than it sounds!) , and Dark Chocolate with Cinnamon and Cayenne pepper just to name a few. I settled on a cone of Guiness and was quite content. :)

Another great Saturday in Nashville!

Friday, July 17, 2009


Might I introduce to you the newest addition to the Stockell House porch...

Meet our hammock.

It has already been a great source of relaxation, napping, and procrastination.

Life is good, my friends.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Road Trip Video

Because I am so behind in blogging, I put together this little video to capture our roadtrip. (Patience is a virtue.... it takes a min to load!)

Josh and I visited Knoxville, Asheville, New Orleans and Memphis. When I had to come back to Nashville, Josh went on to Atlanta, Birmingham, Kiln, and Biloxi. We enjoyed service projects including transporting Alzheimer's patients, parking lot attendants, gardening, etc. We visited breweries, couchsurfed, had random and spontaneous fun (Cow Appreciation Day, fountains, etc.), and met some very interesting people along the way. It really was a terrific trip!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

4th of July

The 4th of July was a little different than I was expecting. Visions of a beach in Mississippi fell by the wayside, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.

Amy and I spent the morning having "Barnes and Noble" time.... meaning we settle down to read a good book. I finished Me Talk Pretty by David Sedaris. Quite witty and entertaining. (Could have used an edited version.)

In the afternoon, I went to my parents to visit with family. It was so nice having my sisters in town! We rarely are all four together, but there is something special when we are. Aunt Marie, Uncle Gary, and cousin Brett were also in town. Fun catching up!

I came home to hang out with Amy and Justin for the night. The downtown fireworks were pushed up an hour early because of impending storms. We managed to find a nice little spot on a hill at LP Field parking lot. The view was so nice that I will probably just go there from now on rather than fighting my way through crowds. About 10 minutes into the show, the floodgates open. Rain poured through my raincoat. We all looked as though we had just gone swimming. The show continued and we stood in the rain watching. It was great! After the fireworks, we came home and had an impromptu dance party. ;)

Because I have been in other countries (China, Scotland, and Italy) for several fourths, this was the perfect day to have some "American memories." Happy Birthday America!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

24 Hour Period

It's hard to believe how much can happen in a period of 24 hours.

It's 11:47pm.

24 hours ago, Josh and I had just gotten back to our CouchSurfing mountainside home after a great evening of Pisgah drinks, cornhole, and a bluegrass night with some Alzheimer's patients. We went to bed with the intent of heading to Atlanta for stop #3 of our tour. I woke up in the middle of the night to a perfect thunderstorm. It was happy.

About 6am, Dad called to say that Grandma was not doing well and not expected to live long. I was not really sure what to do so I told him we would go on to Atlanta and then I could take a flight if I needed to.

About 9am, we headed out of Asheville with the intent of me flying home form Atlanta. I was looking up tickets on my phone. We happened to drive by the Asheville airport so we decided to stop. Tickets were ridiculous so Josh said he was going to drive me back to Nashville.

About 11am, we hit Knoxville when Mama called to tell me the news. Grandma had passed. Josh held my hand and I was extremely grateful he was there.

By 2pm, we had arrived back in Nashville. Josh went on to Atlanta to finish the dream. I tried to find my footing and where I was needed.

This evening, I went home to be with my dad. My heart is breaking for him. I wish I could do more. To know what to say. To take his pain away.

Now it is 11:53pm and I am exhausted. It all happened so fast, but it seems like days ago.

I prayed tonight with Amy and Brad. It was what I needed. I love them. So thankful for people who were around today.

Please keep the Quarles family in your prayers.