Thursday, April 30, 2009

I love you

A friend told me today that I'm lucky I have "good parents." She's right. I have amazing parents. There are a lot of people in my life who I am worried about right now, some of them with not the best parents, some of them with amazing parents. I'm praying for all of you guys. I love you. I'm always here if you need to talk, or need anything. And I will share Dibbs for squeezing. He is soft and cute, and I will make him sit in your lap.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

A Time for Love

My friend Samantha told me once that she could see me with an older man. I asked her why and she said that while some of her friends have a lot of strength because of their education, or their race, she told me "I don't know where your strength comes from." She said that men our age couldn't understand me. "They're just boys," she said.

I just watched the movie "Suburban Girl," based on the book "The Girls' Guide to Hunting and Fishing" by Melissa Bank, a book I loved. It's about a young woman with an older man. Last night Brad and I were talking about who we were just a few years ago and who we are now, how our opinions have changed, how the churches we attend now we probably couldn't have attended before. In "Suburban Girl," the young woman ultimately leaves her boyfriend, because she tells him that she sees a teacher when she looks at him and that he sees a student. She says that in order to grow up, she has to leave him. All this has me thinking about how much and yet in some ways how little we all change over time. The girl in the movie was able to love a man in a very different life stage as her, yet she also recognized that there would be a difference in her life if she married him or explored the years ahead of her with someone else. She knew she would change as she aged no matter what, and that who was standing beside her in the future would affect that.

My friends make fun of me all the time for being a Celine Dion fan, and when they're not making fun of that they're making fun of the fact that her husband is 26 years older than her. I always get defensive and tell them what I truly believe and that is that "love is love."

That's all. My mind is not exactly organized today, so today I give you the gift of ramblings. I blame the rain, delicious springtime rain. Yay for a day off.

Monday, April 27, 2009

"Make Good Choices!"

So it may not have made your newspaper today, but there was a hurricane last night. I lived through it, that's how I know. I was chilling with Brad and Melissa, and when a sudden freezing wind came through we decided to pay some attention to the brewing clouds, and they promptly sent me home, with orders to call when I arrived safely.

I got in my car, saw something orange and thought, "oh yeah, I forgot my car was on empty." Guess what? I drove home anyway. I somehow sucked 26 extra miles out of my gas tank. It started raining shortly after I got on the interstate, and then it started pouring. Now I pride myself on being a very good and calm driver in the rain. But this was still no fun. My thoughts ran back and forth through the following:

"I am going to hit someone because I can't see anything."
(going up hills): "I am going to run out of gas and be unable to get up this hill"
(going down hills): "There is going to be a ton of water at the bottom of this hill and I am going to hydroplane"
"I'm going to run out of gas in general"
"I'm going to pull off the road and wait this out"
"Nevermind, I'm just going to keep driving, Brad and Melissa will worry"
"I'll stop at a grocery store and call them"
"No, I want to get home and go to bed, I work early in the morning"
"There's a gas station, maybe I should stop"
"I'll get struck by lightning if I grab the metal gas pump"
"Well, nevermind, guess I just passed the gas station"

After passing many a gas station and grocery store, I finally made it home, miraculously on my one tank of gas, like the never-ending oil lamp. Dibbs was hiding under the bed. I rescued his cuteness in distress, who was happy to see his mama, then immediately reverted back to nonchalance when I told him it was cuddle time. I called Braden, who then typed to Melissa, passing the message that I was safe. Thanks, guys, for worrying about me. It means the world to me. ;)

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Here comes the beep, you know what to do

Sometimes checking my messages is the most entertaining part of my day. I just came home to the following four messages:

1. My brother Patrick, asking if I want to go to a Royals game in June.

2. Patrick again, with his wife Jenny, the two of them saying "please call us, please call us, please call us" in varying voices, finishing with a giggle from Jenny.

3. Mom, saying she just got done volunteering at the Festival of Books, where she met Bob Barker and told him "God bless you." Then she said, "I'm waiting for the bus, here comes a bus but it's not mine, oh! A Previa! Love you, bye!"

4. Brad, calling for Dibbs. "Dibby? This is Uncle Brad. I just wanted you to know that Mommy's on her way home, I'm following her right now, she'll be there soon. Did you survive the storm? Dibbs? We were nervous too, we had a radio ready. Mommy'll be there soon. Bye Dibby."

Friday, April 24, 2009

Bunny Book

Tonight I went to Starbucks to color (and read, but mostly to color). My mom--excuse me, the Easter Bunny--gave me this awesome coloring book with all the stops (I may not have used that phrase correctly). Perforated pages, a story line involving two kids and a bunny, a fuzzy bunny on the cover, and best of all, brace yourself, each page has a hole at the top so that when the book is closed it has a handle for your carrying convenience. Hol. La. How do ya like me now?

So I was chillin' with my Crayolas, shading ever so nicely, and these girls, probably between 9 and 14, were standing at the espresso bar waiting for their drinks, just staring at me. I could hear them talking about me, but I'm not sure what they were saying. All I caught was "she's coloring," so I'm not sure if they meant this as a bad thing or a neutral thing. Bottom line, they were jealous, and inwardly at least, hoping to be as confident as I when they enter their twenties, bolding carrying their coloring book by its handle into Starbucks, where they may or may not encounter others whom they know. What can I say? I color inside the lines, but I live outside of them.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Dibby Sweet Pea

Okay this post is going to be a little bit lame in its shortness, because I have a pretty mega headache right now. That's okay, because I was celebrating my friend Nate's birthday and he deserves it. Happy 24th, N8!

So I left for work just before noon today, then went straight from work to N8's birthday shindig, and just now got home. Best part of my day, every day? For sure coming home to Dibbs the cat. Precious little pookin baby. Mmm I love you kitty!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


Today's blog is dedicated to my baby brother Riley! I just got a phone message from him that said:

He's sorry he missed me, he would really love to talk to me
He and his girlfriend Caitlin are reading my blog every day and loving it
He can't wait to live with me this summer
He loves me

Ditto, bro!!!! Love you too!!!

Here are my faithful blog followers being hilarious:

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


It amazes me that there are ENFPs (Extroverted INtuitive Feeling Perceptive on the Myers-Briggs personality indicator) and OCDs (so-called "obsessive compulsives," type A personalities, control freaks) all in the same world. Why there can't be balance baffles me. I can't seem to accomplish any one task because my mind is so distracted all the time and so prone to leisure, while I have friends who can't seem to enjoy their cup of coffee if there is a crumb on the table in front of them. Amazing. Frustrating. Sometimes just downright funny, but today, frustrating. I want some of what they've got (the ability to finish my chores), and they want some of what I've got (the ability to not sweat the small stuff, to enjoy the moment). I guess I shouldn't insult God's creation, because I do believe His creation is beautiful and amazing, but I'm human, I can't help but ask questions.

Monday, April 20, 2009


When we were younger, my grandparents had a dog, and they had a box of Milk-Bones for him in their mud room. My brother Patrick told me they were ice cream treats, vanilla ice cream covered in chocolate. He said there was a picture of a dog on the box because they were shaped like dog bones. I asked my grandmother if I could have a Milk-Bone and she said, "Oh Honey, you don't want one of those" and all the adults laughed at me. Thanks, Patrick. Always looking out for me.

Sunday, April 19, 2009


I've discovered that I can't hang out with Brad for less than 4 hours at a time--once we open our mouths we can't stop talking. He makes me laugh so hard I choke on my spit.

Tonight we went to church together and I laughed during a baptism. Everyone was laughing, because the baby had a hilarious bug-eyed expression, but then they quieted down and I let out one loud, solo squawk.

I also discovered that my 3rd grade teacher sings in the choir at his church. I went up to her afterwards to introduce myself and Brad said, "Scared, Bailey, scared" because he didn't want to go up to her with me.

Saturday, April 18, 2009


I have various memories from my childhood spent in church. When we used to sing the song "Down in my Heart" in Sunday School, I thought the words were:

I've got the love of Jesus love of Jesus
down in my heart
down in my heart
down in my heart

The words are "to stay." (I think. Well the point is the words do not include "Tuesday.") Picture it, little Bailey (bowl hair cut), belting "I've got the love of Jesus TUESDAY!!!" You're smiling, I know you are. :)

I also used to think that a "sermon" was a person, an usher, to be exact. Mom would always tell us we could have gum "after the sermon," and she always passed out pieces of original Trident as the ushers were collecting the offering. Thus, I thought, "man walks down the aisle, then I get gum, he must be the sermon."

When I was nine, my family moved to Colorado and discovered an amazing church that was incredibly formative of all of our personal faiths. Most obviously illustrated, but no less powerful than the rest of our stories, is the fact that my dad walked in the doors of this church an engineer, and walked out five years later a first year seminary student. It was our pastor at that church who first asked my father if he had ever considered the ministry.

But I digress. My mom used to have this really thick hand cream, we're talking intensely thick, it was Neutrogena Swiss Formula, and she only ever had it in travel sized tubes. I figured this was because it was so freaking thick that it would take her a whole lifetime to use the entire thing. She'd put this stuff on our fingertips and I felt greasy for the rest of the day, it seemed. I remember her putting it onto my hands during church sermons (the part of the service where the pastor preached, not when the ushers collected the offering, to be clear. Though there might have been some Trident gum occasionally involved), and I think onto my brothers' hands too, but I remember more vividly watching her massage this Neutrogena lotion onto my father's hands during church.

Calmly (my mom does most things in a calm manner), but laboriously, she gave Dad a little manicure many Sundays. She always kept her eyes on the pastor, only occasionally glancing down to oversee her work, as if her brain and heart were the supervisor, her hands the obedient workers. I knew that Mom's focus was always with the pastor, so in love with her friend Jesus, His love in return so crucial to her every moment, thus deserving her full attention during the Sunday morsel of a lesson. Her heart was always in both places, of course, in love with my daddy and Jesus.

Her hands treated Dad's one at a time, one finger at a time. First she'd open the tube, swiftly put a dob on her finger, hastily like an expert, knowing exactly how much to use unlike her daughter who suffered from greasy hands in her grabby eagerness. Then she'd dab a little bit on each cuticle of one hand, then start rubbing one finger at a time, from the tip downward. Then on to the next hand. Dad always had a little grin on his face, enjoying the pampering, also looking forward like Mom, occasionally glazing over a little in response to the manicure's sensory grasp of his focus. But he was always listening, absorbing the words that he would one day form in his own style and share from the pulpit to a crowd including the woman holding his hand, the woman who has held his hand faithfully for 32 years. While Mom tended to Dad's hands and heart, Pastor Flannery and Jesus tended to Dad's heart and mind.

We remember things better if we have one of our senses stimulated while we take in some piece of information. A whiff of cinnamon can put each person in the world in a different place all at once. Thin, greasy fingers webbing their way through your own would magnify a preacher's words, I am sure. The fact that love was involved in this mix of lotion, sermons, and hand holding made the imprint impenetrable upon my father's heart, I have no doubt, even if he has no conscious recollection of this weekly ritual (I mentioned to my Mom recently that I remembered observing this interaction between her and Dad in church, and I'm not sure she even remembered the event).

Jesus washed his disciples' feet before he died, a concept I still don't quite understand, one I am honestly afraid to grasp fully for fear it will terrify me, to comprehend love so deep. I also can't comprehend the disciples' love for Christ, so devoted even while being chastised and tortured by others for their devotion. Nonetheless I regard this love as sacred and never want to let go of this man who washes my feet new every morning, every minute, every day. All He wants is our hearts, and He may have mine. Simply for giving me parents who love each other and myself and my siblings so much, shown in the way they hold hands in church, the way they hold our hearts and always have, and by giving us the best gift they could, introducing us to Jesus.

Last week I visited my parents during Holy Week, and my dad washed my hands during the Maundy Thursday service with the rest of the congregation. "Bling Bling," he said, gripping my hands in the soft terry cloth towel, "love one another as He has loved us."

Friday, April 17, 2009

Gum 101

After a brief vacay from my job, I have forgotten how sticky it is to be a barista. After one hour of work today, I thought, "I need a bath!" There is milk and sugary syrup and luke warm sanitizer water everywhere.... My brother Kelly could probably never do my job because he hates to be sticky. I personally love a good mess, and played many a game of mud football in college, but it's a little strange to have it be a standard part of your occupation.

Around 3:30 every day, we get an "after school rush" of middle school age kids, all ordering Frappuccinos. Today I was stationed at the blenders, receiving cup after cup, and Katie said, "Bailey, I promise you there really are this many Strawberries and Cream Frappuccinos to make, this is not a drill." I laughed when she said that. And then I spilled said S&C Frappuccino all over the counter. Taylor said "good Lord" at one point, commenting on all the chaos, and that made me laugh too.

This particular group of kids who came in today all flock around this boy, Riley, who I'm pretty sure they all have a crush on. Today Riley had gum in his hair. The girls, Riley's assistants, requested a pair of scissors and a cup of ice to remove the gum, and I looked over to see four girls crowded in the men's bathroom with Riley. It always throws me off when they come in, screaming "Riley! Riley!" because that is my brother's name too, a name I don't hear often outside of my own home, like Bailey.

Anyway, apparently the stickiness is not over for me yet today. My neighbors just invited me over for a pancake dinner tonight. Suppose I'll pass on the bath, then.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Ti, a Drink with Jam and Bread

It's about time for lunch here in this little household of mine. I am thinking jam on toast. Which reminds me of high school French class.

I used to have French class right before lunch, and in our textbook there were these pages throughout the chapters with vocabulary terms on them (these were my favorite pages, by the way). Some of these pages were illustrated, for example, a drawing of a house with labels on all the rooms and pieces of furniture. There was one page I remember vividly, with photos of food. My favorite item on the page? Une tartine. Oh, la tartine. How I love thee.

Every day around lunch time, I would start to get really hungry, and for whatever reason, I would decide to torture myself by turning to the page with the tartine on it, thus increasing the drooling and stomach cramping. The tartine, for those who are wondering, was a buttered and jammed piece of toast. That's it. Now, my cafeteria at the time served some pretty good munchable items for lunch. Every Thursday there were spicy chicken sandwiches, and the whole student body got pretty excited for those. There was a vending machine with ice cream. I mean, I was not devoid of options. But it was the tartine that stole my heart. For the simple reason that it was the best looking item on the food vocabulary page in my French text book.

By the time I hit the commons each day, I of course forgot all about the tartine and got a burger or a bagel. But all the way down the hallway, clutching my jumpy stomach, trying to quiet it ("tartines soon, I promise"), it was all about the tartine. It was a tartine love affair, I'm gonna go ahead and say it. So here today, on April 16, 2009, approximately eight years after first meeting you, I dedicate this blog to you, ma tartine. Ma chere petite tartine. C'est delicieux.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

What makes me laugh?

Good evening, kids. At a loss for a topic today, I googled "topics to write about" and was directed to a link with, well, topics to write about. I looked at the first list and thought, "these are good," then realized I was looking at a list of topics for first graders to write about. Oh, well. Here goes: What makes me laugh?

-when Brad tells me to "calm down"
-when my Dad calls me "Bling Bling" (including when washing my hands at a sober Maundy Thursday service at his church)
-when Patrick leaves messages on my answering machine in a British accent
-Bill Cosby, ALWAYS
-when Anne Lamott drops the F-bomb
-when Riley says "12 PACK!"
-radio DJs
-cute boys who tease me
-the young adult novel "Wonder" by Rachel Vail
-Sarah's matter-of-factness
-when Nick's dad imitates me serving a volleyball
-when my manager at work tries to explain something to me and I don't get it
-the scene in the movie "Selena" where Selena's dad calls her bustier a "bra with little sprinkly things on it"
-when a customer gets lippy at Starbucks and Tahlia says to the other baristas, "This guy needs his Frappuccino down his pants"
-this summer when a comedian said to me, "You're like a gay man trapped in a woman's body, aren't you?" Classic.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Pass the Salt

24 hours ago I was at the beach. I frolicked in the water, got my jeans wet, and let my dad bury me in the sand. On the way to the airport I admired the wavy line of white on my jeans created by the salt of the ocean water dried on my jeans. Three hours later, about to touch down at my home airport, there was salt on my cheeks. I wasn't ready to come home, and now, 24 hours later, I'm still not ready to be here. :(

Matthew 5:13 says "You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again?" My confirmation verses were Matt 5:14-16, and verse 16 says "let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven." At the age of 13, I chose these verses because they certainly represented (and still represent) who I am--full of bubbly, energetic light. It hurts to cut vacations short, to have my parents on one end of the country and my brothers on the other, and come home to only a cat (though do not underestimate the value of said cat). But it is the diversity of my experiences, both with vacation beaches and everyday cats, that give me my unique saltiness.

I had a friend in college, Braden (not to be confused with my newest friend, also a Braden), who I discussed with once "the name game." This is the game where you say, "I am Awesome Abigail" or "Stunning Stefanie." Well Braden and I discussed the crappy selection of "B" adjectives--we got tired of saying "We are Bodacious Braden and Beautiful Bailey." So we did a little research, and Braden discovered the term "brackish: having a somewhat salty taste, esp. from containing seawater." While it may not be an appropriate description in the literal sense, we enjoyed that it described us as flavorul people. If you think about it, we actually always probably taste a little bit salty, thanks to our sweat.

I feel I am at yet another crossroad in my life (I feel like ages 20-30 are one big crossroad, can I get an Amen?), explaining my tears yesterday. Part of my sorrow was that I just plain didn't want to leave the beach, the sunshine, the break from work and everyday boring life. Another part was that I didn't want to leave behind my parents, who so seldom get to see their children, and who are such brave, faithful stewards to journey to sunny California in their late 50's. I wish my mom, who's so talented, could have the employment she deserves. I know that me being with her doesn't solve that void, but it can offer her a happy interruption to the waiting. I also don't know what's next for me in life, grad school, boyfriend? :), different job, travel the world, travel the country, stay put? If I think about it all at once (let's face it, I do), I get overwhelmed. And scared. Really scared. And sometimes sad.

The tough thing about being brackish is that you have to get wet in the cold ocean sometimes to earn that cool little design on your jeans. And in the meantime, you have to wait to dry. That salt line doesn't appear instantly. The salt is there, but it's invisible to the eye while it's wet. As cliche as it is, how true is it that when we're in the storm it's impossible to see the light behind the clouds? But the truth is that the light is always there. Jesus told us to let our light shine (and not to let Satan "poof" it out), and to keep our salty taste. Admittedly, sometimes when I read verse 13 I think, "What?" But I also like the poetic metaphor it offers. Being told that we are salt and light is encouraging always, even when it doesn't make perfect sense.

I definitely wouldn't erase my past good memories just because there are bad memories interspersed with them. It's a joke with my friends and family that I can't go anywhere without either seeing someone I know or making a new friend. I am this way partly due to my father's gregarious genes, but a huge chunk of it comes from the fact that my family moved to a new city every few years while I was growing up. With each move came the unpleasant task of asking, yet again, "Can I sit with you at lunch today?" and making annoying, empty small talk, but you know who I got to know over one of those public school lunch tables? Big Bird. Haha, no. My best friend Corie. All those times being tossed around under the violent surf lead to glorious baths in the sunshine on my favorite bed of all time--the sand. When I laid down on the sand yesterday (moments before Daddy Dearest began kicking sand on me), I told my mom, "This is heaven for me."

All of this "chin up, trust in God" talk is easier said than done, obviously. When I am in a storm, I become terrified. I fall silent or ramble on about silly things to keep myself from feeling like I'm drowning. What I learn every time is that I am not in fact drowning, but that God washes me in the salt of each storm at sea, and gives me renewed energy and personality to tell others my stories, and His stories.

While I know God never leaves me alone in a storm, it often feels the opposite, so it is important for us to remind each other always that we, in addition to God, are here for each other during our storms. Feel free to share with me your storms, and I'll lift them up in prayer for you. I hope this blog is a little salt lick for you to snack on during your next storm. God's blessings to you all, until next time.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Bonnie Easter Egg Hunt

This morning I helped my papa judge an EASTER BONNet contest.

This afternoon I went to a filming of the BONNie HUNT show (um, sat in the front row--look for me on TV this Tuesday).

Quite likely that in the next few days I will be helping to stuff EGGS for my parents' church EASTER EGG HUNT.

My mom used to buy me EASTER BONNets and I hated them. Now I wouldn't be so opposed. We change as we grow.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009


Tonight I went to the grocery store to buy beer. I handed the cashier my driver's license (because I look like a 17 year old to some), and she took the opportunity to check out my photo.

"Have you lost weight?" she asked.

I didn't know what to say. I'm not sure that was an appropriate question to ask a customer.

Monday, April 6, 2009

Thanks, Braden!*

"I'm just gonna buy it for you to get you to shut up!"

These were the loving words sent my way by Brad just an hour ago.

I've been bothering him for a couple of weeks now to buy me two books that we sell at Starbucks. And he did it. You know why? Because he's a winner.

So now I have entertainment in paper format--one of my favorite kinds.

Thanks, Braden. Love you.

*I am still intimidated by this whole blog thing--feel like I should knock you off your feet (like Usher--sorry, inside joke with Brad) with every post. So bear with me for a while as I get used to this. NOT that this was a poor post. Anything involving Brad is, like him, a winner.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Round of Applause

All right, so I have a blog.

Here it is.

So today I went to Disney on Ice. It was my first time. It was okay. Pretty corny, but you know, I'm not five, so it's to be expected that I wouldn't be shrieking when Ariel skated into view. But I for sure sang along, don't you worry.

So the part that stayed with me was when we saved Tinkerbell's life. Yes, we. The audience. Myself included. So we all know in the story of Peter Pan (and I'll be honest, it's a pretty LONG storyline and I usually get a little confused), that at some point Tinkerbell drinks a glass of poison to prevent Peter Pan from drinking it and dying. So 1+1=2, as a result, Miss Tink begins to waver. And she encourages Peter Pan to clap, because, apparently, this is how you save a Pixie's life.
So I will admit that at this point in the show I started to anticipate what was going to happen and yes, got pretty excited that there was going to be some participatory clapping coming up. "We're gonna save her life!" I thought. And we did. And we did a pretty good job--just puttin' that out there. And I thought, "If I were a kid, this would be the part that would be the most magical for me, the feeling that you, by clapping, were helping to save Tinkerbell's life."

A few hours later, now at home, I am realizing that I need some people to clap for me. My work schedule gives me a lot of problems, bottom line being that it does not provide consistency in my life. I also feel quite isolated, as I seem to work when the rest of the world is off work, and vice versa. And by nature, I am not a productive person. I am a creative person, and once when in the act of being active, I am quite active. But left to my own devices, I will watch episode after episode of America's Next Top Model and not get much done. When this continues for months at a time, it makes me pretty depressed.

So I realized tonight that I kind of feel like my sole cheerleader right now, which let's be honest, that's pretty lame:

"Go, Bailey! Good job, Bailey! You're doing awesome!!!"
"Thanks, Self."

Um, no. It's just hard to be one's own accountability partner. I have some fantastic friends in my life, but as I said, my work schedule inhibits my social life, so I don't get in touch with my "outer" cheerleaders, if you will, too often. Only my inner cheerleader.

Now this is my first blog post, and I am rather intimidated, so I am not really going to make this a profoundly amazing post. But what I will leave you with is this: clap for others. Literally, ideally. Make them a little uncomfortable if possible. Start with your friends, and clap for others who you can see need it. And even if you can't see it, they probably need some clapping.
We all need people to clap for us, for our accomplishments (feeding the hungry, or on some days, just doing the dishes), and to encourage us when we're not doing so well. We all miss the mark a lot, and when we try to set our own goals and miss them, very little is going to encourage us to try, try again, unless we've got some applause. I've never thought about this until now, but I really think this is profoundly true and prevalent. Also, we just need others around us to make light of our circumstances. You know those days where you're just down on yourself, like "Bailey! What is the matter with you? Why are you so lazy that you can't do your laundry?!" Well you know, some days that is just not a big deal, but it is hard to tell yourself that. So basically if I had someone standing by to clap for me and say, "You know what, Bailey, you're a winner and a fantastic person so it's quite all right that you neglected the laundry today," well then, I'd feel quite a bit better.

So go ahead. Clap for someone. Start by clapping for yourself right now. Then find a buddy who needs some encouragement. And steer clear of poison.