Wednesday, January 9, 2013

hey reid.

to the only person who checks the updates on this blog. hello.

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Last night, we celebrated one of our sweet friend's 19th birthday. Liza, yes-THE Liza, turned 19 of Friday and last night we decided to go to dinner at Sushi Zushi in the Domain. Being a college student, I typically stay within a 5 mile radius of campus. This means that I am a frequent at fast, convenient, on-the-go food.
However, every once and a while, we travel outside our bubble and experience really good food.

Last night was one of those nights.

When it comes to the Sushi Zushi menu, there are two kinds of diners- the safe or the adventurous. The safe don't bother reading. They know that every sushi place has a California Roll and the matter is settled. In the same regard, the adventurous diner doesn't read the menu either. They find the "house favorites," "most popular," or in some cases "eel rolls" and they pick one at random. This diner has little to no fear and even lower expectations.

I am neither of these diners. I read the whole menu. The name of the roll, the description, the ingredients, and last night, I even polled the audience (aka text my sister to get her sushi expertise). I was not going to be boring and settle, but I was not about to take a chance. So, after careful consideration I settled on the Spicy Tuna Roll.
It was an EXCELLENT choice I might add, but that is not the point.

As the dishes arrived, despite the difference in filling or topping, each plate had the typical thinly sliced ginger and the spoonful of wasabi paste. I enjoy both of these accoutrements- especially the wasabi. My friends seemed to be stunned that I enjoyed the spiciness and even more amazed that my sinuses could handle the heat (no pun intended). As each person finished their dish, one thing remained- the wasabi. Although two of my friends-Ellen and Lauren-ventured to taste it, and couldn't get it past the tip of their tongue, I challenge you to give it a try next time. Maybe add a tad to the top of your roll or start with a dab of wasabi followed by a roll followed by the cooling ginger. I promise you, you won't regret it.
And once you begin your love affair with wasabi, you must try wasabi peas. They are the perfect snack!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

A cookie, a cake ball, a country dance, and a new CD.

Yesterday was indeed Valentines Day. The day where love is in the air and if it is not, then you stuff your face with chocolates and pretend it's the one day a year that you do that. But, I am in fact dating someone. His name is Reid. Yes, we met in college. Yes, I am only a freshman. But, Reid is great. Some of his greatest qualities are his integrity, his spontaneity, his compassion, and his love for Jesus.

Earlier yesterday, I received a box of Tiffs Treat's cookies from my parents who I guess decided that just in case Reid didn't come through, I would still have some warm cookies. Well, the cookies were delicious, but Reid came through. Knowing I am not one for cheesy heart necklaces, Reid hands me a tin of Austin Cake Balls. Now that's a boy who knows a way to a girl's heart: cake and chocolate. Let's just say, we were off to a good start.

After a cup of coffee and a not so delightful piece of ginger cake, me and Reid decide to head to Mt. Bonnell- a natural spot in Austin with a breathtaking view of the lake and city. Upon arrival, we discover that everyone else who has a Valentine decided to come to Mt.Bonnell. So, Reid, being the expert navigator that he is, knows another spot. Unfortunately, where he abounds in navigation, he apparently lacks in creativity because that spot is packed too. Long story short, we end up on the roof of a parking garage that overlooks the city- a spot he took me to on one of our first dates (which was less than 4 months ago).

Before reading this next part, it is important that you know that Reid danced in high school. And by dancing, I mean, he knows a lot of country-western moves, can throw girls in all sorts of tricks, and loves him a good country song. You should also know, I can't dance. AT ALL. But, of course, it's 10 o'clock, we are under the stars and over the you see where I am heading. After finding a decent country song, we began to dance. Yes, a little back and forth country sway and occasionally some more "advanced" moves that I will never be able to repeat. But, it doesn't matter. It was fun. It was spontaneous. And, I enjoyed every single minute.

After he dropped me off, of course I couldn't go to sleep- I mean, I had just danced under the stars for crying out loud. So, I of course check all forms of communication that I hadn't check in 3 hours. Facebook. Email. Grades. Blog. Twitter. I come across about 50 statuses and/or tweets about the new Hillsong United CD, Aftermath. Within minutes I had it uploaded and began to fill my ears with the sweet worship that music creates.

So, my day started with a cookie and ended with a new CD. As for the cake ball and the country dance, they were sweet reminders that life is indeed good.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Be Made to make.

I attend a church in Austin called The Austin Stone Community Church. It is a church of fairly young people, from high schoolers to college students to newylweds and young families. It is a church of growth and teaching where they desire to train people to go out and make disciples for Jesus. You can read more about their mission and purpose here.

Yesterday, Pastor Carter finished up his series on Heaven. He had taught us on the torment of Hell and I encourage you to listen to that sermon as well. But, I wanted to highlight yesterday's sermon. I can not fully give this sermon justice so you must listen to it. I know we don't all have time to sit and stare at a computer for 40 minutes, but download it and listen to it in the car. Or while you do the laundry. Or, my personal fave, while you bake. Make time to listen to it. And when I say listen, I mean engage and understand. It will remind you just how good God is and just how much He loves us. Then, as you find the time, go back and listen to the other sermons of the series. Once you listen and learn, then share it with friends. Be made into a disciple to that you can make disciples.

Friday, February 11, 2011


My friends. To try to describe them in words would be an injustice to them and a huge understatement. These past few days I have been spending a lot of time with friends. Thursday night we had a pink themed party. In other words, a bunch of girls dress in pink, ask a bunch of guys to do the same and then meet up at a place to have a HUGE DANCE PARTY! It was a great time. And the best part, not the dance party. The dinner prior. Me and 7 other girls and the boys. Gathered around a crowded table at Z' Tejas, we enjoyed each other. Our conversation went from crazy professors to hilarious SNL skits and everything in between- I will leave that up to your imagination.

Only 6 months ago we were all in different cities, scared out of our minds of becoming independent and last night we were all around the same table sharing stories like old friends. My friends. The people who a short while ago were not even a thought have now fulfilled my ideal picture of relationships. So, why am I sharing all of this? Why does this matter to you-the random stumbler who decided to look past the cheesy blog title and actually read this? hope is that you want my friends. That you want to laugh and share and grow and when the night comes to an end, you walk away satisfied and confident and exhausted.

Yes, this reads like a motivational speech. Well so what if it is. Because, tonight I experienced my friends again. My roommates for next year decided to grab our favorite dinner...casual. Once again, we sat around the table- we ate (plenty), we shared, we laughed, and we had a jam session in the car on the way home. A group of girls who have grown to love each other deeply, care for one another sincerely, enjoy each other richly, and live for the glory of God passionately. I could not think of anything better.

So, you can't have my friends, because I am convinced mine were uniquely made for me. But, every person has friends out there that will compliment and complete them. As for a great restaurant or fun coffee shop, I don't have one. I can't seem to remember anything about the meal that stood out. Just the friends.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


When I started this blog, I thought, "Man, this will be fun, it will give me something to do in my free time." That was on a snow day when all I had was free time. Today, different story. I can't find free time. Ya, there are some down moments, but in these down moments, all I can think about is what I should be doing to get ready for the busy moments. All this to say, I am going to try to post often. But, it might not happen. I mean, we can't all be Pioneer Woman.

However, while I am focused, I will share with you a few things I did (actually I ate) this weekend. Obviously, my selections are from Austin, so I am sorry reader who lives in Chicago and to my mom in Houston, since she is probably the only one reading this blog. Anyways, following an amazing church service at Austin Stone Community Church (see below), I, my parents, and one of my sisters, Seliece, went to brunch. Vespaio Enoteca. Ya, don't ask, because I couldn't begin to tell you what those two words mean. All you need to know is that it is secretly delicious. Located on South Congress (possibly the quaintest street in downtown Austin), the menu is deceiving. You read it and then you get out your pocket sized culinary dictionary (don't tell me you don't have one), and you try to decipher menu items like "jambon royal" and "sieved egg watercress." My first thought was, "Oh crap, I came just wanting to eat and now I can't eat or read." Meanwhile...

My parents and sister ask the waiter questions in hopes of her saying, "We can just fry you an egg, cook you some cheese grits, and slather maple syrup on some pancakes." She didn't. But, we ordered anyways. Seliece chose the safe route. Two eggs scrambled with corn polenta. My dad chose sweet. Pancakes with bacon. My mom and I chose hollandaise, I mean eggs benedict. Mine had ham, her's had spinach and tomato. 5 cups of coffee later (no, the service wasn't slow, we just drink a lot of coffee)...

Our food arrives. Looks fancy. Smells incredible. Take a few bites, pause for effect, sigh with contentment, and try all of the other dishes. How to describe my eggs benedict. Perfect. The hollandaise was not too rich, but gave the dish a creamy and satisfying feel. They poached the eggs in such a manner that the yolk was like the gift and the whites were the wrapping paper. The ham was shaved so thinly that is was more of an after-taste- a salty, mouthwatering after taste. And the best part: the bread. Not a traditional english muffin or biscuit. I don't even know what it was. It was like thick toast but crunchy on the outside and warm and fluffy on the inside. I hope you are jealous.

Corn polenta as a side. Where are the grits? Where are the biscuits and gravy? No my friends, it is all about the corn polenta. I am not going to try to describe these. Just know: creamy, thick, full of texture, perfect seasoning, divine.

Each dish we ordered had unique flair. I will stop letting you in on this dining experience- you have to go for yourself. Take a friend or five (so you can try everything else, duh). I know brunch is only served on Sundays, so plan accordingly. Oh, and for this meal, no need to starve yourself for 5 days prior, it leaves you satisfied but not stuffed. South Congress, great atmosphere, yummy food, oh and the serving staff is really nice too (and patient).

*Sidenote for Austin Stone Community Church- It is a local Austin church that I attend. Each week, the sermons challenge you in your faith and, during worship, the presence of Jesus is truly there. I encourage you, as you desire to grow in your walk with the Lord and know Him better, you should visit Austin Stone, or download their free weekly sermon podcast.*

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Sweet Escape.

Let me start by saying, I have the best college roommate in the world. She enjoys spending time with me, she keeps the room clean, she likes to have fun, but is also a hard worker. We can be weird together, sing loud together, be lazy together and still have our own friends and do our own thing. I am thankful for her everyday.

Let me also say, I have the best family in the world. You know, your family, the people who know you the best. The people who, after a week where all has gone wrong and you feel overwhelmed, know that you just need a good dinner, a bold americano, and some chocolate while sitting on a couch in your stretchy pants. Friday night was that night for me. My week had been rough and I needed an escape. My sister Seliece provided that for me. She picked me up at 6:30 and we enjoyed soup, salmon, and brussel sprouts at a new Austin fave, Russell's Bistro. After deciding a nice cup of coffee and some chocolate would bring us complete satisfaction, we headed to a coffee shop neither of us had tried. That is not saying much since Austin is full of local coffee shops. Houndstooth. Yes, it's name is weird and it's coffee is expensive, but it is delicious and definitely hit the spot. But, we still lacked the key to a successful night. Chocolate. So, Seliece chooses the galleria of all things selective. Central Market. We settle on a bag of microwave popcorn and a candy mix of white chocolate covered pecans, dark chocolate covered banana chips, and yogurt covered pretzels. We then race to the house, change into stretchy pants, turn on a movie, and savor each bite of our yummy goodies.

Spending that night with my sister, enjoying the simple things, and going to bed before my grandma was exactly what I needed. To escape the schoolwork, the routine, the everyday and enter into a night of relaxation and rest allowed me to put things back in perspective. I am not only so thankful for the delicious meal, the relaxing night, and the quality time, but also for my sweet sister and the sweet escape.