Category Archives: okieOLIO
i really enjoyed choosing one word to sum up my goals for 2012, so this year i’m joining the one word 365 community again in focusing on a single word for 2013 that “becomes the filter through which you see and live your life. It steers your decisions and guides your steps…a word that can be a reminder, a nudge. A word that you can reflect on, that will challenge you, that will inspire you…”
again this year, it seemed as if my word chose me, rather than the other way around. it’s been on the tip of my tongue for the past few months, as each new day as a rookie mom takes me on a wandering route that was not necessarily the one i mapped out.
my one word for 2013 is GRACE.
at first i was hesitant to settle on the word that, when referring to the unmerited favor of God, has such a divine and eternal significance. but, ultimately, it is the word that best describes the way i need to view and live my life this year.
GRACE is compassionate, GRACE is giving, GRACE pardons missteps without condoning complacency. i want to be forgiving of imperfection while still fostering growth – in myself and others.
GRACE is balanced, GRACE is nimble, GRACE handles tricky situations with finesse. i want to be light on my feet so that i can adapt to what will surely be a year of rapid changes and unexpected detours.
i believe approaching my life with GRACE will benefit my relationships, my personal ambitions, my professional goals, and my spiritual growth.
my hope is that keeping this focus will help me live my life with elegance and poise, even as i stumble through my first year of motherhood. 2012 is the year i cultivate the mom inside me – the type of mom worthy of the legacy left to me. flexible. generous. kind. GRACEFUL.
“Grace is the empowering Presence of God enabling you to be who He created you to be, and to do what He has called you to do.” ~ James Ryle
image via promisedgrace.com
Western Conference Champions. i’m breathless with excitement. (i used up all my exclamation points last night celebrating the win.) i’m so proud to be an okie and a Thunder fan right now. and i’m truly not surprised that they’ve made it this far.
the OKC Thunder are a unique team in a obvious way that has nothing to do with their fierce talent and fearless energy on the court. they make it clear that the players consider their team a family, and the fans are part of that family. this attitude is displayed in every interview, every game, and every product.
the slogans “Rise Together” and “Team is One” are not just buzzwords, but a genuine declaration of the team’s motto. quotes from the players and coaches like “we won because we stayed together” and “you’ve got to play for your teammates” exemplify the spirit of this young team, our city, and our state. and everyone knows it.
it’s a reputation so well-known that when the NBA designed a series of promos for the playoffs centering around the word “big,” the piece on the Thunder highlighted this unified feeling. “if you are from around here, you are part of one TEAM, one FAMILY, and you’ve seen your kids grow BIG.”
the solidarity did not develop by accident. when the players arrived in OKC, they visited the bombing memorial and began to understand the impact of that event on the face of the city. kevin durant said that he wanted the NBA team to help change the persona of OKC from one associated with a tragedy to something positive. and the people of OKC have embraced the opportunity to pour their hearts into more than just honoring loved ones’ memories by rebuilding, but by rallying behind another representation of the character and strength of okies. the community has responded with love, support, and art. i just love the relationship between our players and our state.
the enthusiasm of the fans that fill the arena reaches ear-splitting decibels and defines our home-court advantage. (especially in the nosebleed sections, known as “loud-city.”) even in one of the smallest cities to have an NBA team, the games are almost always filled to capacity, and during the playoffs the entire crowd has no problem donning identical shirts to blanket the risers with a huge Thunder banner. the simple design of last night’s shirts was perfect.
and back to last night’s incredible conference-clinching win…again, there were several examples of the team spirit that epitomizes the OKC Thunder. i loved that the signature play was a durant assist to perkins in the final minute. most NBA superstars want to take that final shot. they want the highlight for their legacy, for their brand, for their rep. but not durant, who has become the face of the franchise. he was unselfish and made the right basketball play, which is characteristic of this 23-year-old leader. kd just wants to win, he doesn’t need the hype or drama. (just compare lebron’s lengthy televised decision to go to south beach to kevin’s tweet announcing his extended contract with okc for an example of how kd stands out from the typical high-caliber basketball talent.)
it’s hard to believe that we have a good chance of winning the NBA finals after just four short seasons, but i’m confident they can do it, so proud of how the team has grown, and thrilled to be experiencing this wild ride as an enthusiastic fan.
this saturday has been so full that my weekly summary is bit late – after working in my hometown all week, my whole family rolled in for the weekend (17 of us from 3 different states) for a way-too-short visit (it always is). this evening i had a blast at megan’s book release party. it was wonderful to be among old friends and celebrate our new oklahoma author. i loved when she read a short passage – it was fun to hear an excerpt of the book in megan’s own voice.
i finally got around to trying this savory, veggie-filled egg muffins recipe. it was so simple and tasty, but they didn’t reheat as well as i’d hoped. kinda eliminated the idea of making them as an easy take-a-long breakfast option.
we celebrated my titu‘s 92nd birthday this week with almost all of her kids and grandkids present. she was thrilled with her birthday present: an new iPad! now she can skype with her family and browse our facebook pages and look photos we email to her and play sudoku… “ooh, everyone’s going to be jealous of me!” you have no idea, titu.
this thursday an event focused on foster care, the 8308 Conference, will be held at journey church in norman. 8308 is the number of children who were in OKDHS custody on january 1st of this year. the event is designed to help connect Oklahoma faith communities with resources and information to help members become involved with and aid children in the state’s foster care program. the conference is free and not just for church leaders — anyone interested in providing support to the foster care program in oklahoma can read more details here and register for the event here.
this video of cain’s arcade has been making the rounds online, and i have to say, i think it is worth the 10 minutes to watch. what a clever little boy!
i can imagine it would be difficult to come up with creative ways to photograph your children after awhile. one dad is thinking way outside the frame with an assortment of imaginative photos of his daughters (with a little editing trickery, granted).
i have lots of goals for this coming week. wish me luck! i hope you have a productive week as well.
behind this bookcase in an upstairs bedroom of my parents’ house lies a secret time capsule of the first twenty years of my life. it’s home to cherished mementos from milestones of my youth, dating back to the cross-stitched announcement of my birth.
my family lived in the same house from the time i was born until my senior year of high school. during my freshman year of college, my parents finally finished building a gorgeous dream house on 20 acres at the edge of town.
my younger brother and sister were still living at home, and each had their own room in the new house. while it seemed silly to build a room for me, i still wanted a space to call my own when i came “home” during breaks from college. (and a place to put all my stuff, let’s be honest.)
so they decided to finish out a small, oddly-shaped storage area behind my sister’s bedroom, and designated it my “cubby.” i was thrilled. i requested the hidden door, and was so pleased when the builder created one just like i imagined.
i immediately determined there was no need for tasteful decoration in a secret cubby, and set about plastering the walls with all the pictures, plaques, and keepsakes that had been stashed in drawers and memory boxes in my old room. i nestled all the belongings i couldn’t part with into the wedged corner created by the angle of the roof, and set up my random trinkets on a small bookshelf.
the itty bitty foam couch unfolds into a pad just long enough for my short body, and i used to lie there staring at all my memories and grinning.
the cubby is not really secret, since almost everyone who has been been to the house has seen it, but it remains mostly untouched since i moved my stuff in, with the exception of adding souvenirs from my college years after i moved out of the sorority house. i love that all these things are on display where i can enjoy them any time i visit my family.
but i know the cubby can’t remain this way forever. eventually i’ll have to claim my stuff and it will all go into boxes where it will take much more effort to browse and reminisce. as i look around at the tokens, big and small, that i’ve collected over the years, i can’t imagine parting with any of it, but know i will have to choose.
the photos here are the beginning of my digital documentation of these keepsakes, so i can store the memories on my computer instead of the attic. the hardest part will be giving up any of the numerous handmade and mod-podged (hello, 90s!) gifts from precious friends.
i’ll rescue the personalized boxes because they have the important job of containing other important keepsakes, and i can save the huge mickey mouse i won when i was eight for my (eventual) children. the same goes for my favorite comfort snuggies from way back: benny the bear and pink blankie.
but what about the box of playbills (nearly 50) from every musical i’ve seen in nyc, london, and dallas? what about the stack of trail maps (about 25) from every ski resort i’ve visited? and the large box of letters received over a cumulative eight months at summer kamp? will i really be able to justify making space for these things? there certainly won’t be room for the (shh, don’t tell my husband) boxes of sweet tokens from old boyfriends, homemade rockets from working at flight camp, knickknacks from high school musicals, micky ears from disney world…can you tell i’m a bit of a sentimental packrat?
i’m just going to savor my tiny time machine while it lasts.
i was so hoping that this week would bring sunny skies so that i could take advantage of the mild spring temps to get in some good time tending to my garden while i’m in town (and before the intensity of the summer heat).
instead it has been overcast and rainy most of the week. (not that i don’t welcome the much-needed rain.) when the sun did peek out briefly, i instated a mandatory work-break and hurried outside to soak up the warm rays and work the softened soil in my veggie patch.
thankfully it was beautiful on the date set aside for the one day without shoes campaign – a challenge sponsored by TOMS shoes to raise awareness of the impact a pair of shoes can have on a child’s life. i saw lots of people in okc participating!
spring hasn’t officially arrived in oklahoma until you get the first slew of tornadoes. severe weather descended upon my neck of the woods for real as the weekend approached, and we’re under all kinds of warnings and watches for several days. twister season, commence! (stormy skies photo by joel limpic)
i’m extremely proud and excited for my good friend megan and the release of the book she co-authored: Spirit-Led Parenting: From Fear to Freedom in Baby’s First Year. next saturday there will be a book release party in her honor at studio midtown from 5-7 pm. even if you are not a parent or a Christian, i think you’ll love megan’s sincere approach to faith-based living and parenting. you are all invited to come meet megan, support an okie blogger and author, and buy an autographed book.
a few days ago i posted a blurb on the OLIOsnippits page about photographer joel robison’s series of images portraying the reading experience. book lovers, feast your eyes and imaginations.
i was thrilled when netflix’s streaming service started offering TED talks grouped by subject. now instead of playing old friends or seinfeld episodes in the background when i cook or clean, i soak these inspiring, fascinating, and ingenious short talks back to back. this video of from yves rossy, the “jetman” was particularly exciting to me, because i have always dreamed of flying high and free like a bird.
as someone who loves words precisely because each one is unique in it’s exact meaning and subtle connotations, this article on the thesauraus from lapham’s quarterly was an interesting read. i love the proposition that “there is no such thing as a synonym” while at the same time recognizing the value in an inventory of relationships between the senses of words.
next week i’ll be working in my hometown all week and my titu is thrilled to have me occupy “my chair” beside her for several evenings in a row. at the end of the week more family will be coming to town and we’ll get a chance to celebrate her 92nd birthday! i hope you all get some good family time this week, as well!
not to complain (really–nobody likes when i get whiny), but this week has been characterized by technical difficulties. every digital device that i rely on in my daily life decided to cry mutiny this week, so it feels like i spent the majority of my days on the phone with technical support…or on hold.
but other than my electronic frustrations, the week held some really fun moments, too. i stayed an extra day in colorado to take in the mad scene known on snowy slopes everywhere as “gaper day“ (april fools’ day). i’ve just missed it many times before, and was convinced by my brother’s great photos that i needed to see it in person. i was not disappointed.
i was anxious to really give my garden some attention once i got back into town, but every day has been dreary, overcast, and rainy. i’m still taking advantage of the cooler temps and softer soil to rid the last of the weeds and start a few new veggies, but it’s more fun to tend a sunny garden. at least i can count on a few plants coming back strong without much help from me, like my beautiful strawberries and the tall onion chives. i was even surprised by some healthy red chard resurfacing while i was gone.
my days held several business and personal meetings, all of which brought good things. enjoying a belated birthday lunch with robyn was the highlight.
the one digital development that did go right this week was the release of the instagr.am app for android! i have been waiting for this for what seems like forever. now i have more incentive to participate in fatmumslim’s photo a day challenge for april! frustration with the inferiority of the flickr app made me unsure that i would continue participate once march’s list was complete, but now i’ll take any excuse to use my shiny new app!
as a grammar junkie, i got a kick out of a couple of articles on the word “whom” and if it should die or be revived. from criticizing the correctness of twitter’s “who to follow” to graphing the prevalence of whom in recent books, it seems to be something grammar police are fired up about. my philosophy on grammar and vocabulary definitely falls more under “descriptive” than “prescriptive.” i believe we should absolutely teach and promote correct usage, but if the evolution of language creates a new norm, i think that should be recognized as valid communication.
if you have a bit of extra time, these five classic creative challenges compiled by the99percent are entertaining and revealing. test yourself and gain some insight on your creative strengths.
i hope you all have a wonderful and meaningful Easter tomorrow. i’ve truly been encouraged by the Artist Bible reading plan for Holy Week on youversion. if you haven’t had a chance to check out The Artist Bible, do it today!