On Our Way To Crazy

… like disco lemonade…

The day I tried to be creative. June 24, 2010

Filed under: 30 Before 30 — brandi @ 1:25 am

I am not a creative person. At all. I am so impressed by people who can paint, or take great photos, or write songs. I can not do any of those things.

As part of my 30 Before 30 project, I decided to flex my creative muscle a bit. Try to make some stuff myself instead of buying one more thing from Target that everyone else has, too. Hence numbers 15 and 27 – make a t-shirt and a piece of jewelry.

I had no idea what I was going to do for the jewelry. The only thing I really wear besides my wedding rings is necklaces. I love them. But just stringing some beads on a chain seemed like cheating, you know? Then I saw a tutorial for this necklace on a design blog.

Cute, right? I don’t have anything like it, AND I have some fabric that I bought for a severely over-ambitious project that is never going to happen. Seriously, I love this fabric so much. I want to have a whole wardrobe made out of it.

So I cut. And I braided. And I sewed. And it turned out… okay. I love the colors. And the frayed edges. I think maybe I braided it a little too tightly because it doesn’t lay quite like I want it to. but I think it’s going to work for me. Plus! I made it! All by myself! Well, mostly by myself. I couldn’t find any safety pins so Aaron had to hold the ends while I braided. I think we may have been watching Glee at the time. It was all very manly.

The t-shirt was a little more complicated. I do not sew. I don’t have a sewing machine. I don’t really know how to thread a needle or tie a stitch off when it’s done. Or, you know, how to stitch.

I had an idea for a cluster of stars on a shirt. I have about ten thousand of those Gap v-necks with the little pocket, so I decided I could sew some stars onto one of those and call it good. I googled “applique t-shirt” and cobbled together some ideas on how to make it happen.

I started with felt in several colors. Then I found a star shape that I liked and cut out a bunch in different sizes.

I decided they were kind of plain on their own, so I stacked them and sewed them together. It took FOREVER. Sewing is hard, y’all. But I think they turned out okay. A little artsy craftsy, but what can you do.

Then I used that stretchy iron-on heat bonding stuff to attach them to the shirt. They are actually stuck on there pretty well, but I think I need to go back and stitch them to the shirt, too. That should only take about three hundred years.

(Sorry for the boob shot. Attempting to be crafty involves lots of taking pictures of yourself in the bathroom mirror, apparently.)

They aren’t perfect, but I am pretty proud of them. I’ve worn them both in public and gotten compliments on them BEFORE telling people I made them. So that was nice. Maybe I’m not totally deficient in the creative department after all.


Lord, you never let go of me. June 23, 2010

Filed under: Introspection,Youth Stuff — brandi @ 9:29 am

I’ve never been big into worship music and singing at church. It has always made me feel really self-conscious. I’m not very expressive, I don’t really raise my hands, I always feel like everyone is looking at me. It’s not something I’ve ever really been able to shake.

On Sunday mornings I am usually dealing with kids or talking to parents or trying to calm down before I have to do the announcements. I sing when it’s singing time, but it doesn’t really feel like personal time, if that makes sense. It feels like work time. And that’s okay.

Last night I went to a local college/young adult service called Kairos. Our music pastor at church is one of the worship leaders there, and she invited the staff to come because they were doing a night of music. I went because I am a nice person and a couple of my college kids were going. It’s one of those big, flashy events with cool lights and several screens and projections on the walls that look like stained glass. The music is really loud. Everyone on stage looks like a country music star. Everyone in the crowd is under 23. It is so not my scene.

So imagine my surprise when I found myself crying by the third song.

It had been a long, long time since I’d been a part of a service of any kind that I didn’t have any responsibility in. It was dark and loud and crowded, and I got to just stand there, completely anonymously, and participate. There was no way anyone could hear me singing. The chances were slim that anyone could even see me. I could listen, and sing, and really pay attention to the words. I could focus. Do you know how long it’s been since I’ve been able to focus during a service? No? Well. A while.

I did not expect last night to have any kind of effect on me. (I don’t know what it says about me that I went into it so cynically.) I definitely did not expect to find solitude and freedom surrounded by 1400 flashy strangers. But I did. And I needed it desperately. And I am very, very thankful.

Oh no, You never let go
Through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go
In every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go
Lord, You never let go of me


A dream is a wish your heart makes? June 9, 2010

Filed under: Random — brandi @ 11:24 am

I could write you a super boring essay about all the reasons why I’ve been so bad at blogging. Busy, lots of life changes happening, new computer, abducted by aliens, blah blah blah. But instead, I will tell you a little story to illustrate the insanity that has been my brain lately.

I try to keep notes on my phone when I think of things to blog about… funny things that happen, books I’ve read, what’s going on in my life. But I am really bad at going back and looking at that list and actually writing about those things while they’re still fresh in my mind.

Case in point: I just found a note to myself. Apparently I had some really weird dreams one night and I wanted to share them with you, so I wrote down some key words to help me remember. Because my dreams are totally what you want to read about.

1. camp wardrobe parking lot naked
2. wedding rain no groom pizza
3. mini pony little mexican wrestlers

I have a feeling, though, that these would be good ones. If only I could remember the stories.


Good things in May. June 1, 2010

Filed under: Good Things In... — brandi @ 12:18 pm
Lots of food related good things this month. Also, every month. I just censored myself a little less this time around.

May 1 – Rain rain rain rain rain. Also, grilled cheese for lunch. From a restaurant. I am such a grown up.
May 2 – Ummm… it rained. A lot. We couldn’t leave the house, so we ate frozen pizza and watched Arrested Development.
May 3 – I made pasta from scratch. THAT’S RIGHT.
May 4 – We learned very quickly how to use very little water.
May 5 – Lunch with a youth family. Delicious burrito bowls, sunny patio, hilarious kids.
May 6 – Birthday lunch with one of my college girls. Hello, caprese sandwich.
May 7 – Lots of churchy flood relief organizing stuff.
May 8 – Took a bunch of kids to volunteer with flood relief. They are awesome.
May 9 – Thai food and a great Jennifer Knapp show with a friend.
May 10 – Volunteered with Hands on Nashville to sort flood donations. Met some very cool people.
May 11 – Got some unexpected good news today. So that’s, you know, good.
May 12 – Good lunch and boyfriend struggle discussion with a high school girl.
May 13 – Eighth grade graduation. Lots of Justin Beiber haircuts.
May 14 – Beautiful weather. Excellent music in the car.
May 15 – I orchestrated a super stealth sneak in to a very ritzy neighborhood and flamingo-ed the crap out of it.
May 16 – Great discussion with the girls about hypocrisy. Sometimes you have to end a class without a clear answer. That is hard for me, but it’s how life works, so I think it’s good for them. We will see.
May 17 – Delicious cheese plate, wine, olives and crab cakes with a friend. I ate meat on a Monday. But it was for flood relief, so it doesn’t count.
May 18 – Swell Season at the Ryman!
May 19 – Silent football showdown at youth group. That game is awesome.
May 20 – Sushi lunch with a couple of my graduating girls. They are so grown up.
May 21 – I went to an awesome middle school talent show (hula hoops! Taylor Swift songs! Inappropriate thrusting!) and then a graduation party with one of my favorite families.
May 22 – Graduations! Graduation parties! Lots of pictures and chips and dip.
May 23 – Met some fun new people at care group. Also, held my tongue when it was appropriate. That’s growth, people.
May 24 – I made crepes with strawberries and fresh whipped cream. I am awesome.
May 25 – So! Many! Meetings! But they were very good and full of iced green tea.
May 26 – Very interesting and very good discussion on homosexuality in my ordination practicum.
May 27 – Great meeting with one of my favorite youth parents, watched some of my kids play softball and ended the day watching So You Think You Can Dance with some new friends.
May 28 – Two more great parent meetings. I have the best job in the world.
May 29 – Helped some good friends move and did some stealth flamingoing. As in, I was crawling on my stomach across a yard while the front door was open and the house was full of people.
May 30 – A pool trip was rained out but replaced by a super fun relaxing afternoon with friends and lots of junk food.
May 31 – Where to begin… honey lime chicken, grilled sweet corn, tomato avacado salad, fresh salsa, and, oh yeah, SOPAPILLAS. All homemade. Including the sopapillas. By Aaron. I married well.