Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Bring on 30!

So today marks the end of an era in my life. It's the last day of my 20's. That's right. Tomorrow I will officially be the big 3-0. People have asked me, "what do you think about turning thirty?" My answer has pretty much been the same, "I love my life and am in a really great place right now, so thirty doesn't scare me. Bring it on!"

But today as I reflect on the last decade of my life, I am coming to realize how wonderful it's really been. God has done amazing things in and through this ordinary gal, making something extraordinary out of me. It's been His doing, not my own, which is why I don't mind bragging a little bit. I owe everything to God who has given me everything I have, provided for each experience I've taken part in, and grown me up into the woman I am today and the one I'll be tomorrow as I blow out my candles. 

With that being said, here's a snippet into what's happened in my life since I turned 20 in 1999:

  • Played collegiate Division 1 soccer
  • Been voted captain of my team by my teammates
  • Participated in 2 NCAA Division 1 post-season tournaments
  • Said goodbye to my paternal grandfather (Poppop) as he went to meet Jesus face to face as well as some friends who were taken much too soon
  • Graduated from Furman University
  • Traveled to Austria, Czech Republic, Sri Lanka, England, Kenya, Italy, Costa Rica, Israel, Mexico, & Cayman Islands (my first cruise). 
  • Skied & snowboarded some of the best slopes in the U.S., seen the Grand Canyon, surfed in the Pacific Ocean, been on an African safari, and zip-lined through a rain forest
  • Worked in corporate sales, in the service industry, in professional sports, in full-time ministry, and in marketing
  • Lived on my own for the first time…and made it!
  • Made some life-long friendships which I cherish
  • Started my own business
  • Met, dated, and married the man of my dreams
  • Moved across the country to Los Angeles…and back again
  • Graduated from Fuller Theological Seminary with a Master’s Degree
  • Seen my both of my parents come into personal relationships with Jesus!
  • Trained for 2 half-marathons which I never ran, and many 10k races which I have ;)
  • Bought our first home
  • Been ordained as a pastor
  • Been pregnant 3 times; Ella’s been a precious addition to our family, #2 is waiting in heaven to meet us one day, and now Allie is getting ready to make her Berry family debut!
  • Stood by my family as we have dealt with my mom’s lung disease
  • Spent time investing into the lives of hundreds of young people through various ministries including some in the country's most dangerous neighborhoods-no one can resist LOVE!
  • Learned how to be a mommy, and a stay-at-home mommy at that
If that's what my 20's looked like, I can't wait to see what God has in store for this next decade of my life! Praise be to Him, the one who can do more than I could ever ask or imagine (Eph 3:20).

Saturday, January 03, 2009

We had her in stitches...

Let me first just say that my husband is a great daddy. He really is. He loves our daughter fiercely and is incredibly precious with her. She adores him and is a complete Daddy's girl. She'll go around the house singing, "Dada, Dada, Dada, Dada...." and it melts my heart.

But Daddy has been feeling a little down on his parenting skills lately because it was on his watch that Ella had her first accident.

He had lovingly given me a couple hours of "Coley time" which I planned to spend at Target and Barnes & Noble...picking up a few household items and giving myself a little book and coffee time. I made it to Target and had just started down my list when I got the call...

"Hey babe." (Caller ID allows me to do this with relatively little chance of getting it wrong)

(Baby crying hysterically in the background) "Um, hey....um...I think you need to come home. Ella busted her chin open and is crying and bleeding and I think she's gonna need stitches."

So much for my time away. Unfortunately, we are a one car family at this point in our lives. Well, we actually have an old beat up truck that I like to call by many different not-so-nice names, but it's obviously unsuitable for a child to ride in (or me for that matter...I try my best not to go near it most days). And, while it may have not been the best move, I had opted for the more comfortable Honda to tote me to my day of "me". It had the carseat in it and everything that he needed to take her to the ER. So I dropped my basket of items in Target, jumped in the car and...

sat in post-Christmas traffic.

When I finally got to the wide open spaces of the highway towards home I put my hazards on. And, while I was not going outrageously over the speed limit, a cop stopped me. I leaned out the window and explained the situation and wouldn't you know...He let me go! I couldn't believe it!

(Disclaimer: you can't use this excuse if you're really speeding...that's lying).

20 minutes after I got the phone call, I walked into the house and saw my husband and my daughter sitting on the steps drawing on the Magna-Doodle a picture of a little girl with an owie on her chin. They both had blood all over their shirts but were surprisingly calm. We loaded her in the car and took her to the ER.

And 4 hours later we finally put her back in the car with 3 new stitches on her chinny chin chin.