Thursday, December 19, 2013

Lessons in Running

So I am not a runner. Wish I was and so admire those who are.
Students used to ask if I liked running, to which I would reply, "I only run if someone is chasing me. And even then, I may just rely upon my mad self-defense skills!" Haha!

Since moving to Dallas, I have occasionally gotten into running bouts of insanity.
The weather this week has been INCREDIBLE and urging me to get outside, which is lovely since we were cooped up, iced inside not that long ago.

Here's some observations about my running habits:

1. Large earrings are needed as part of the running "outfit".
Some people in Panama used to laugh when I would tell them I had beach/pool earrings.
This meant, there were earrings designated for such activities, ie: it doesn't matter if they get lost or ruined. Thank you, Dorians, for cheap, fun, dangly, big earrings for such activities.
Since it is no longer pool or beach weather here in Dallas, I feel the need to have large earrings when running. Yes, I realize there are probably laws of aerodynamics that would reckon large earrings a hindrance to this activity, but this girl's gotta have her some big ole' earrings.

2. My playlist is not your typical running list. I asked 'Rica (my former roommate who was a runner) and sister about running playlists. Their suggestions - something upbeat that will motivate you.
Sister's quote, "It has to be lively. Listen to rap if it will make you keep going and energize you."
I tried the upbeat deal. It didn't work for me. Occasionally, I like the more peppy style, but my go to is more like a "songs for Jesus" playlist. Includes music from: Hillsong, Ellie Holcomb, Tricia Brock, and Spanish worship music. This leads to the following observations.

3. It takes a lot of self-restraint to then keep my arms down while listening to said music because I want to raise them up in worship! This would completely throw off my less-than-stellar balance and I envision toppling over. The half-hand raise does come out because I just can't hold it back. While unconventional in the music style, it makes the running time less like a chore and more of a worshipful experience with the Lord.

4. This playlist may invoke strange looks from others out exercising when excessive mouthing of the lyrics takes place. It has proven awkward on occasion when the lyrics say things like, "I want more of you" or "You are all my heart desires" or some of the Spanish lyrics may appear even stranger to passing gringos.

5. Worship music causes my eyelids to desire closure and they do on occasion. However, in order to prevent falling, tripping, or appearing to be a potentially weaving runner, keeping the eyes open is important. The closing of the eyes can also bring on more strange glances from others. Case in point, tonight I took my off of the area in front tonight and totally had my ankle buckle. And only in front of the line of cars waiting to go in the apartment complex. Good times.

6. I have no idea how 'Rica would run every. single. night. in Panama with 1000000% humidity. This past summer, I went running one day when the temp was 102 and had to cut it short. Whoa! Hats off to you.

Tonight as I was nearly back to the apartment, I passed a cluster of trees and heard this beautiful clamoring from the birds hidden in the branches.

Listen to the song the Savior has put in their hearts to worship.


* Final note, the sunset/sunrise pictures are all from the past 24 hours. The Lord is painting up the sky and it is a marvel to behold!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

There Might Have Been an Ice Storm in Dallas If...

* There is a early dismissal from work on Thursday for everyone to get groceries, fill up cars with fuel, and get home before it gets nasty.
* Your trip to Target reveals two strange things there is a shortage of: Diet Coke and black beans. That's two different types of gases going on there, folks!
* You strategically park your car so it is not under a tree in case the limbs break. Here's hoping this tree stays upright.

(This was before the ice hit) 
* You awaken Friday morning to sleet outside.
* You contemplate an emergency plan for "what if the electricity goes out and this is the first place I've lived in as a grown-up that doesn't have a gas oven to cook food." Good news - you are one of the fortunate ones who has electricity.
* You realize your office has no electricity and are thankful you didn't have to fight the crazy roads to find that out.
* You see this picture on Pinterest and give it a robust "So true" statement

* You awaken to the sound of a large tree breaking and it's giant limbs hitting the ground. Thankfully it was at the golf course and not the crepe myrtle your car is near.

* You and your roommate decide to brave the elements on Saturday to go to the grocery store and get a Christmas tree.
* You put on layers and realize you do not own gloves. Not good.
* You need to navigate these frozen stairs to leave said apartment.
* The stair navigation becomes the stair domination. Stairs: 1 You: 0. It was a tumble from the top to the bottom.
* You never realized how sore a bruise on your elbow bone and tail bone can be.
* It takes you, your roommate and one kind-hearted neighbor 20 minutes to clear off one car that is a solid sheet of ice.
* The ice is so thick, your roommate cannot open her trunk. So you brave treacherous stairs again to get keys to obtain ice pick/brush.
* Your trunk will not open either, so you use the "secret passage" from the backseat to obtain ice scraper.
* You are lamenting the no gloves situation.
* You feel as though going to the grocery store is like being freed from prison. And you've only been home one day.
* This trip to the store reveals two other things folks were stocking up on:

* You are thankful if you were to lose electricity, your food will be fine because there is an outdoor refrigerator/freezer. 
* You conquer the stairs on the return. 
* You find out via twitter that church is having only one service. 

* If takes you only 10 minutes to clean off your car on Sunday morning because the temperature rose 5 degrees. Hurray for some melting!
* You notice there are still places without electricity.
* People in the parking lots at Einstein Bagels are so friendly  because they are delighted to have left their homes.
* You hear sounds like thunder during church. It's really just giant sheets of ice sliding across the roof.
* You go see "Frozen" after church because it just seems fitting. (And you realize you identify with Ana because she just bursts into song for random reasons - YES!)
* You receive texts from your co-workers about the plan for tomorrow - the bosses are stranded in another state because of flights being cancelled and there is likely refreezing tonight.
* You brainstorm with your co-workers on a work plan for tomorrow.

Overall, you are thankful. Thankful for safety, warmth, groceries, shelter, and so much more.
And you are thankful for seasons. For "real" winter in Dallas. For singing Christmas songs while wearing sweaters and coats.

But more than that, you are thankful to have been able to worship with other believers this morning.