Sunday, August 31, 2008

Some pictures

Tonight Matt and I had another long car drive... we realize that we do this a lot :) 

On our way back from Alexis, NC for a wedding I started looking at my iPhotos... Its pretty amazing that we have a record of almost all of our dating relationship to now. We have had a lot of adventures, participated in many weddings, had fun at some great parties, and watched NC State play a lot of sports. 

Enjoy... these are just a few...

Saturday, August 30, 2008

A few reasons I love my husband

Last night Matt and I had another adventure that I think... only us... I was trying to figure out how to post about this because it was definitely blog worthy, but remembered that there are so many other things like this that I love about him... so I'm posting a few more of them.

It is also his birthday today! Lets Celebrte Matt :)

These are in no particular order...

  • On Thursday we went to see NCSU v SC in Columbia... we drove back until 4AM. He stayed up the entire time. The last 30-45 minutes were really tough to stay awake so he rolled down all the windows in the car and periodically stuck his head out his side of the window. Maybe it was just late... but it made me laugh.
  • Last night we went out with some friends. At the beginning of the night we joked about walking to Krispy Kreme... we were at the Flying Saucer... we then walked up to Raleigh Times and had dinner. It was great fun. We left to walk back to our car around 11:45PM and decided that we really did want some donuts.... we walked to Krispy Kreme. It was fun to stroll around town together. We decided that more people in Raleigh should walk places. It doesn't take that long, is fun, and you see what is going on. This is my plug for more walking in Raleigh!!! Do it!
  • We got to Krispy Kreme at 12:11PM... The lobby closed at Midnight... but the drive through was still open. We attempted to get donuts through the window but the lady working there informed us that she was on camera and could get in trouble if she served people on foot (so there are some downsides to walking)... but, we didn't walk all that way not get our tasty treats... another reason I love my husband (persistence and creativity). He asked the next car that pulled through the drive if they would get us 3 glazed donuts. This girl was SUPER nice and was like, sure thing boo... whatever you want... So we left with donuts in hand for our trek back to our car. 
I'm realizing that this post is getting really long, so I'm only going to list a few more things that I love... there are many more:

  • Balances me out
  • Loves Jesus
  • Is just as stubborn as I am
  • Able to relax
  • Works Hard
  • Has great friends
  • Wake boards like a champ
  • Cherishes me 
  • Is great with children
anyone else have good things to say about Matt?

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

On a lighter note

I stole this video from Danielle's blog... Shiloah is so precious. She is playing in the bedroom that I grew up in and my mom tells me that everyone at Roanoke Academy (the gym I grew up going to) says she reminds them of me.


Aug. 27, 2008

Human Trafficking 101: North Carolina and Beyond

Raleigh, NC—Jubilee, a local volunteer abolitionist group, will host "Human Trafficking 101," a seminar to be held on Sept. 8, 2008 from 6:30-9:30pm, at Visio Dei Church in Raleigh (524 E. Whitaker Mill Road, near the Five Points area).
The purpose of this event is to provide basic education on what human trafficking is, address the state of trafficking in North Carolina, connect key community members together, and provide action steps for getting involved with this issue locally. The seminar will be taught by the Human Trafficking Training Coordinator for North Carolina, Dana Vaughn-Mgunda of the Carolina Women's Center.

Over 27 million people are in slavery today, and many of them are trying to survive right here in North Carolina. All community members are invited to come and learn about this issue and what can be done about it, particularly on a local level.

This is a free community event, but online registration is necessary: (more event details can be found here).

In the past, Jubilee has also hosted David Batstone of the Not For Sale Campaign and Kimberly Smith of Make Way Partners. Jubilee members believe that the faith community has an important call to promote justice and extend compassion, including in the realm of human trafficking. Jubilee does operate from a Christian faith-based perspective; however, people of all faiths/no faith are most welcome to attend this training session.

Let me know if you have any questions.
I hope to see you there.
Please pass this opportunity along to anyone else who might be interested.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

follow me...

I just finished reading Transforming Discipleship by Greg Ogden. I am going though where I put all of my sticky notes in order to figure out what is important for me personally in my work and what would be beneficial for me to share with others. I cam across this quote...

“Jesus allowed the disciples to live with conundrums. He intentionally set up mental train wrecks. Running on the same tracks toward each other were two diametrically opposed thoughts. No easy answers were provided, nor were there fill-in-the-blank workbooks. He wanted disciples who would have to think through the issues.” (p. 89)

This one made the good enough to share with others list :)

I think it struck me strongly because I have mental train wrecks on a regular basis. I will choose to follow Jesus. God, thank you that you won't let go of me.

a little bit more

It appears that I am a bit behind in my political posting... being that it is the Democratic National Convention and I am still considering an interview that happened over a week and half ago. Anyways, I have more thoughts on that that interview.

1) Faith Based Non Profits: This is something that I am interested in because of my graduate experience as well as being involved with these organizations myself. The question was something to the effect of should there be restrictions on these organizations that are getting government money?

I liked McCain's answer... basically, a hands off approach, but to my knowledge, they may be hands off because they give out less money... is that correct?

Obama's answer left a bit to be desired... he said "the devil is the in the details"... but the DETAILS matter and they are there... I understand that government money should not be used to discriminate and we should be careful about that, but I also see that the governmental systems and restrictions can inhibit faith based non profits from becoming effective...

it seems like there is a rock and hard place

Option 1: Take Government $$ and have to follow their rules
Option 2: Don't take Government $$ at all

*With McCain, there may be less govt. $$ available, but if there are fewer taxes on the wealthy, fund raising may increase revenues.

*With Obama, there may be more govt. $$ available, but more restrictions, taxes may be higher so individuals may be less inclined to give.

This seems like a sticky situation.


Friday, August 22, 2008

my assessment of the debate

I have not come to a conclusion about what I think yet, so I can be swayed, but these are things that I am thinking about... feel free to try to persuade me otherwise

1) My communication hat: I have the benefit of having studied rhetorical theory for several years, this makes me analyze things in different ways... I was drawn in by McCain's stories. I think that a lot of people were, he has a ton of life experiences that help to back up the beliefs that he presents. However, I couldn't help but think to myself... sharing stories like this is a political tactic... I think he is trying to be like Ronald Regan... is this a good thing or a bad thing? not sure, could be good, a lot of people think Regan was a good president, could be bad, some scholars assess that he got away with a lot because he skirted around the truth by using fancy stories.

I actually heard a commentator this morning say that Obama sounded like a sophomore in college answering these questions... to me it sounded like he was considering multiple points of view where McCain was just stating his perspective.

2) Experience: McCain has way more experience than Obama. This showed in the ways that he answered questions so decisively. He has taken a life time to form these opinions and also has a record to back up most of what he says. Obama is new to this... he is more idealistic (much like myself)...

3) Abortion: I would consider myself to be pro-life, however, I am more liberal in my politics on this one because I think that in order to support a pro-life stance we need to be prepared to support women through their pregnancies. Obama nailed this one for me... he said that although the current president is pro-life the number of abortions during his presidency have not decreased... this is something that he would work for, to increase the possible choices for women to sustain life.

4) Evil: This again is where I am skeptical about McCain. I am much more comfortable with Obama's answer... something like, "people have often participated in evil themselves when trying to defeat it." Its not something to take lightly. McCain... defeat it...

I think, seek to understand it, you will be able to overcome it better (war, other things as well)

5) Audience Responses: Just watch for yourself, there are several times when the audience cheered... i thought it was funny, may not be where I would have cheered.

6) Adoption: I like that McCain has an adopted child. At some point we may consider adoption and I want a president that understands it and works towards making it a greater possibility. Although, someone I was with the weekend said they think his adopting a child could have been a political move...

Why are we so cynical?

Okay, so there are a lot of other topics in this video, but you should watch it for yourself.

a good "debate"

On Wednesday I was working at Nofo and my regular father son duo came in for their weekly lunch appointment. They are very interesting people and usually ask me about the book that I am reading at the time... this week it was Transforming Discipleship by Greg Ogden.

They then asked me if I had seen Rick Warren (pastor of a huge church in CA and author of well known book Purpose Driven Life) interview Obama and McCain. Honestly, since Matt and I dropped our cable subscription I have not been following the election at all, partly because we are watching the Olympics til all hours of the night each night and partly because I'm lazy and don't seek out info for myself. I want it spoon fed to me... (my confession)...

I was REALLY skeptical of what this forum would be like... what types of questions would they ask? How would the audience respond? Would this situation prove to be embarrassing for those who consider ourselves followers of Christ? To my surprise, after watching the interviews last night I have to say that this will probably be the most influential part in helping me decide the election.

I say this for a couple reasons:

This discussion was all about issues, the candidates talked in candid ways about things that I cared about. This rarely happens when I'm watching sound bites.

They were both asked the same questions without hearing each others responses, so it seemed to be more of their initial response rather than a come back to the other person.

I got to hear how their faith plays a role in their politics.

I got to hear what each one was passionate about because each of them spent different amounts of time talking about different things.

I tried to embed the videos in this post, but couldn't figure out how to do it off of the CNN website. I looked it up on you tube and their are some funny spoofs of it and sound bites, but if you are interested in watching it in entirety, go here... Obama part 1; Obama part 2; McCain part 1 ; McCain part 2.

My assessment will come in the next post.

Monday, August 18, 2008

How to Hypermile

My husband makes life interesting for me in many ways. One of the most recent experiments that he was doing is hypermiling. He read some article describing it and decided to try it out. It was pretty entertaining for a while... then he got a new car and I think the discipline to do it has worn off a bit. However, I've been driving the Honda more now and am starting to experiment with it my self.

My how to of the day on Google was How to Hypermile... if you are curious check it out.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

a month down... a life time to go

I have made it one month without chewing gum :)

Free Training Sept. 8th

I post a lot about human trafficking on my blog from time to time. If you ever wonder what this is all about and what to do about it, please consider attending the training that we are hosting. Click here for details.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Random information

I'm on vacation, which means that when I have internet access I actually take the time to read the forwards that I get. This one that I got was titled, "God's Pharmacy" and I thought it was really interesting, humorous and insightful. If these things aren't mere coincidences, could this be yet another way to confirm creation?

A sliced Carrot looks like the human eye. The pupil, iris and radiating lines look just like the human eye... and YES, science now shows carrots greatly enhance blood flow to and function of the eyes.

A Tomato has four chambers and is red. The heart has four chambers and is red. All of the research shows tomatoes are loaded with lycopine and are indeed pure heart and blood food.

Grapes hang in a cluster that has the shape of the heart. Each grape looks like a blood cell and all of the research today shows grapes are also profound heart and blood vitalizing food.

Kidney Beans actually heal and help maintain kidney function and yes, they look exactly like the human kidneys.

Celery, Bok Choy, Rhubarb and many more look just like bones. These foods specifically target bone strength. Bones are 23% sodium and these foods are 23% sodium. If you don't have enough sodium in your diet, the body pulls it from the bones, thus making them weak. These foods replenish the skeletal needs of the body.

Avocadoes, Eggplant and Pears target the health and function of the womb and cervix of the female - they look just like these organs. Today's research shows that when a woman eats one avocado a week, it balances hormones, sheds unwanted birth weight, and prevents cervical cancers. And how profound is this? It takes exactly nine (9) months to grow an avocado from blossom to ripened fruit. There are over 14,000 photolytic chemical constituents of nutrition in each one of these foods (modern science has only studied and named about 141 of them).

Figs are full of seeds and hang in twos when they grow. Figs increase the mobility of male sperm and increase the numbers of Sperm as well to overcome male sterility.

Sweet Potatoes look like the pancreas and actually balance the glycemic index of diabetics.

Olives assist the health and function of the ovaries

Oranges, Grapefruits, and other Citrus fruits look just like the mammary glands of the female and actually assist the health of the breasts and the movement of lymph in and out of the breasts.

Onions look like the body's cells. Today's research shows onions help clear waste materials from all of the body cells. They even produce tears which wash the epithelial layers of the eyes. A working companion, Garlic, also helps eliminate waste materials and dangerous free radicals from the body.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Pre-- coffee

I'm sitting here at Panera enjoying my Tart Cherry Scone and delicious cup of java, but before I sat down and got my caffeine intake I tried to set my trey down on a spot that definitely could not support it. My coffee and scone hit the floor... uhhh...

But, the nice people who work here gave me another scone. Thank you!

It hit me that I come by my caffeine addiction honestly. Last night my mom described to me their decaffeinated fiasco... apparently my mom switched up Danielle's decaf for regular and so for 3 days my brother, mom and dad were mistakingly drinking decaf...

My brother napped uncontrollably, my dad had headaches, my mom could barely make it through the day... was it stress they thought? were they sick? what was going on? Danielle was the pregnant one... and she was doing the best of the rest... until they found out...

Danielle said, "Vicki, where is my decaf?"

Light bulb...

Another prayer

Recently I have been convicted and pulled to pray more and pray more in depth. This happens to me every once in a while, its like a call to "really" seek God... not that I don't on a regular basis, but there is something about my prayer life these days that takes extra energy than my typical list of things that I lift up or journal of deep thoughts that I ask God to speak with me through...

I think it happens when I don't know what to pray or how to pray... when I realize how much I need God... I start praying scripture. This is my prayer today for all of you who read this, who are being exploited, who are in my church family, who are my friends ...

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being...

power to be transformed and not to conform to the pattern of this world
power to face the darkness with the light of Christ
power to accept and extend grace

So that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith...

please Lord, give us faith
faith in what we cannot see
faith in what we cannot touch
faith in your power
faith that there is more
faith that you want to use us
faith that you have created us uniquely to help redeem the world
faith that you love us

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge--

help us understand how to love others
help us to grasp your love so that we love
help us to operate in your power

that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God...

your love is big
your love is wide
fill us with this love now

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine

Bring it on God
Bring your healing
Blow our minds with your power
Change us
Change the world
Bring your justice
Bring your peace

according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations,

You alone are the one I want to receive the credit, help me to have that attitude always, its all about you Lord!

for ever and ever! Amen

Ephesians 3:15-21

Monday, August 11, 2008


Every time I hang out with my neighbor I learn something new. Barb has so many different amazing talents. One of them is growing the biggest sunflower I have ever see.

Yesterday I was in mid conversation with her and looked up and was like... "OH MY GOSH!! Is that real?" I knew these things got big, but seriously, the flower part of that plant probably weighs over 30 lbs.

Maridee is showing off a piece of the leaf. For those of you who don't know, sunflower leaves feel a little like sandpaper. It pretty cool.

They also have rosemary, basil, dill and tomatoes. I'm inspired by them.

My tomato plant that I planted a few months ago is already dead... I think I'm going to let it go for now. Maybe I'll start a garden next season.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

A Fransiscan Blessing

Thursday and Friday I attended the Leadership Summit that is put on by the Willow Creek Association. There are several highlights that I may blog about in the near future, but the following quote is the one that stands out the most at the moment.

Craig Groeschel from was probably the most applicable and challenging speaker. He ended his talk with this prayer for all of us. Today, Jeff ended our worship gathering with the same thing. This is something that I would like to pray on a regular basis.

May God bless you with discomfort at easy answers, half truths, and superficial relationships, so that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that you may work for justice, freedom and peace.

May God bless you with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war, so that you may reach out your hand to comfort them and to turn their pain into joy.

May God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world, so that you can do what others claim cannot be done. Amen.
A Fransciscan Blessing.

Friday, August 8, 2008

Girl time is awesome

Last night I got to hang out with some amazing chicas to celebrate Julie's birthday. I wish I had my camera with me so that I could show you pictures.

Jenny made Julie a crown with ribbons flowing off of it and a delicious strawberry shortcake. Both are photo worthy :)

We ate at Porters City Tavern, a delicious treat. I had fried green tomatoes. I have to admit, our Nofo Fried Green tomatoes are better... but they were still delicious. I have to say, the woman who waited on us was pretty amazing. She actually plated our short cake for us and brought it out. I was impressed because I know how annoying it can be to have a party bring in their own dessert (1) they are taking longer on your table and 2) they aren't having a higher bill)... but she went above and beyond. Thank you!

Also, our conversation was fantastik (I like to use a K in fantastic for some reason I just like it better). We talked about everything from magicians, to real life love dramas, to human trafficking, to prison ministry, to swimming in the pool, to conferences, to being a guinea pig for IV injections in a moving car, to jobs, to life in general. I love how the conversation just flowed and was so fun. We probably could have stayed there all night.

Thank you Julie for allowing us to celebrate you! You are an amazing person and friend. I think the company you keep speaks volumes about a person and you keep some awesome company.

Friday, August 1, 2008

New Hair Color

I'm not sure what got into me but for some reason I decided to die my hair yesterday.

This is the first time I have colored my hair in 7 years. Wow! That is a long time to go without hair color (I say that as one who grew up bonding with my mom over highlights :)

Charlotte helped me apply the treatment and did an excellent job. I think she was more nervous about my transformation that I was. I figured... its just hair right?

I was actually going for darker than it turned out, and I might revisit it in a few days, but for now I REALLY like it.

Some times its fun to do something funky.