Thursday, August 14, 2008

I am getting married...and starting another year of school

So I haven't written on the 'ol blog in a while. The title explains why...

So I hope even though I have been bad at bloggin that you all haven't left me. I need your help.

If you have ever gotten married, you all know that it is a lot of details to work out. If you have yet to get married, I have one piece of advice...have a short engagement!! Short engagment = less time to stress over details. It is wonderful.

Anyways, so I need some girl help here.

One very vital part of the wedding day is hair.

I need someone to tell me on my wedding day,

"Gurrl, you own that pony tha' updo!" (if you don't get this...please go to YouTube and search for the Mad TV skit, "can I have your number")

So my question is, have any of you lovely ladies ever had an updo in this town? Do you have any hairdressers that you can suggest for me?

I need the body now. really I am not that dramatic, but I really do need suggestions!


Saturday, July 19, 2008

"Faithfulness is His Very Character"

"Faithfulness is your very character"

-Psalm 89:8

"But I will never stop loving him,

nor let my promise to you fail,

I will not break my covenant,

I will not take back a single word I said."

-Psalm 89:33-34

3 years ago I sat on my dorm room praying. I was praying that God would fix my brokenness. I was praying that I would stop wasting my time dating the wrong boy. I was praying that God would heal my broken attraction that kept attracting me to the wrong boy. Out of the blue, God said, "Ryan Price is your husband". Now I didn't hear an audible voice, I heard a voice in my soul that didn't sound like mine. It freaked me out. I didn't tell anyone for like 2 weeks. But the Holy Spirit kept gnawing at my heart. So I told my roommate. I still remember feeling so nervous to voice this thing that seemed CRAZY to me. I thought she would think I was a psycho. But she didn't. She said 4 words to me that carried me to July 17th, 2008.

"well, let's believe it."

So we did. We believed it and then on July 17th, 2008 Ryan Price asked me to be his wife. I couldn't be more excited to be his wife. I couldn't be more blessed to be engaged to this wonderful man of God.

But most of all, I feel so blessed that God used this entire relationship to teach me about how God speaks. God works. God moves. God is faithful to finish what he starts. Before I get to the exciting night of the proposal, I have to glorify the Father that brought us to this day.

If any of yall know Ryan and I's story, it is not full of easiness of trusting God that Ryan was my husband. I felt like a stupid girl a lot of times. I know a lot of girls think that the Lord has told them who their husband is...I always thought those girls were crazy.

But then God humbled me. He made me one of those girls. But God did this because my faith was so very weak and it needed to be strengthened.

I often wished that our story was that Ryan fell in love with me and I didn't have a clue and he had to woo me and get me to like him. I often hated that I had these crazy strong feelings for him. But now that I sit here 3 years later, looking back at the journey that God took me on, I am so thankful that it was exactly how it was.

So the quick version of Ryan and I is that about 4 months after I heard God tell me this, we started dating. We dated for 7 months, then broke up for 11 months, and then got back together...for good!

So our journey to engagement and soon marriage was needless to say a tough one for me. However, the sweetness of God healing both of our souls and reuniting us and bringing us to this point is so incredible.

There were a lot more details, but for now, I will get to the engagement.

One thing for sure, Ryan's proposal was worth waiting for.

At 3:00, on July 17th, I came home from a day of computer training at school and found a beautiful dress on my bed and a note that told me to put on this pretty dress and accompany Ryan to dinner that night at 6:30.

At this point, I was really excited.

So I got ready and he came to pick me up at 6:30. When I opened the door he was standing there with a dozen red roses!! It was like a dream.

So then he whisked me off to dinner at Maddens. We had a wonderful dinner! Then we walked around downtown for a bit, and I thought it was a very nice night, but apparently if you were in pants and a tie, it was rather hot! haha! (the one time it is nice to be a girl!)

Then we got in the car and Ryan just started driving. On a normal night, I would have probably asked a lot of questions, but I didn't want to ruin Ryan's surprise, so I just decided to do what I do best...just talk!

When we were getting close to a park that was very special to us, I started to get the hint. At that point I had to go to the bathroom and I knew I wouldn't be able to go at the park, so I told Ryan that I needed to stop. So on the night of my proposal I got to stop at a gas station in my nice dress and go pee! so great!

So then we got to the park and Ryan had a blanket and candles. He started a very nice speech and told me a lot of wonderful things. He also told me about how he wanted to see what I looked like when I got old. I love his humor!! Then he said the sentence I will never forget,

"Sara, I would be the happiest man in the world if you would marry me."

Of course I said yes!!

Then he showed me the amazing ring that he bought me! It was so beautiful and in a box that he had bough in Malawi for that purpose. The felt inside the box was from his mom's engagement ring, which was really special!

Then we sat and talked for a while. I shared with him the story of God's faithfulness in our relationship. I had never told him any of this. It was really special.

Then we came back to my apartment and a lot of people I love were there!! We had a great celebration and a time of prayer. It was really great.

So that is the story of God's hand in our relationship. It is such a sweet time of rejoicing and praising God for all that He has done.

Thank you for all of you who have walked through this with me. I couldn't have made it to this day without your faith!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Move Number 3...CHECK!

Yep, that's right, I just finished moved number 3. I have moved 3 times in the last year and a half. For those of you that hate to do math, that is once every six months. It is insane...but it just has to happen. For the first 18 years of my life I never moved. My parents bought the house I grew up in and moved in when I was 6 weeks old. I never had to pack a box or load all of my belongings in a car...

Then I moved to college. I was pretty stable for the first 4 years. I only moved twice. After college my life has been less predictable...thus the moving so often. Let's just say, after move three, I have more than made up for the stability I enjoyed the first 18 years of my life.

So move three went great.

The "CHECK" part of this title would not be there without a few amazing people. Without amazing people to help me, it would say, "move number process...for eternity".

First of all, Ryan Price is one of the most amazing men I know. He borrowed a truck from these amazing people, the Hendricks. Seriously, who lets you borrow their truck for a whole day?!? The Hendricks. I love those people.

Ryan helped me load all of the stuff that the two of us could handle. He was so patient with me and carried all the heavy stuff. He knew how to secure furniture on a truck. He drove slow to keep all of my stuff protected, and he did it all with a happy smile.

Even when I got frustrated, he just happily put his muscles to work for me. He is the most amazing man I know.

But for some of the major stuff, we needed more help. I don't know if you have checked out my biceps lately, but they are whimpy. Ryan needed a man to help him move our extremely heavy couches and my bed. As soon as I voiced a need to Kaylene and Carlos Carpio, they agreed on the spot (well...after Kaylene checked her calendar, but that is a given with her ;)!)

Carlos and Ryan were AMAZING!! We have two hide-a-beds and one skinny entry way. They turned those couches every which way and got them in. THEY WERE SO HEAVY! But they are supermen.

Then they got both Blaire and I's beds up the skinniest stairway I have ever seen. They seriously spent 30 minutes just trying to figure out how the bed would fit. Then just like magic, they got it. INCREDIBLE!

Kaylene did not let her hands be idle one second. Kaylene is a superstar organizer. She knows where to put things and how to make snacks easy to grab. She likes to make labels and know where everything is. She rocks my world. Our whole kitchen is unpacked because of her!

Finally, Blaire's parents are some cleaning machines. They made the place we were leaving IMMACULATE! I have never seen it this clean. We would still be cleaning if it weren't for them.

It was such a beautiful day of watching God provide sweet servant hearts into my life. I love all of the wonderful people that helped move me.


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

My summer addictions...

I confess...I am an addict. Summer brings out the addict in me. It is not that I don't have addict tendencies during the school year...I just don't have as much time for them, or for that matter time to write about them. But in my effort to be a bimonthly blog updater...I had to get another post in before June passes us by!
My number one addiction...

FLIP FLOPS! Even though there are many studies that show I will be experiencing horrible body problems later in life because of my flip flop wearing...I don't care. They are so darn comfortable and so darn easy that I can't give them up. If it means I will be in a wheelchair at 35...bring it on! I will be riding with my flip flops.

Now, this summer addiction comes on really before the "official" start of summer. Any time the temperature gets above 57 degrees...I am wearing flops. You see 57 rounds up to 60 and I think that 60 is a perfectly normal temperature to wear flip flops.

Honestly, I am quite puzzled why doctors say flip flops are going to cause me so many problems, I mean people in Jesus' time wore sandals all the time and there is no record in the Bible of their back problems. I guess only time will tell what I am doing to my body with this addiction.
The second addiction is purely a summer addiction...

POP-ICE!! Seriously, have you guys eaten one of these this summer? You need to!

The best part about this addiction is that it is cheap! It cost about $3 for a box of a 100 of these things! They don't take up all your freezer space, because you just freeze the pops as you use them. They are best after they have been in the freezer only a couple hours and they are still a little slushy.

I love how clean this snack is. All the juice stays in the little pouch, so after you have enjoyed your ice, you get to suck up all the sweet juice! It is amazing. I am getting so tempted to have one just as I am writing this.

Go today to your local grocery store or wal-mart and buy these won't be disappointed!

My third addiction is the habit I want to kick...

MOVING! Yes, I have an addiction to moving. On July 1st, I will be indulging in this addiction once again and moving to a new apartment. This doesn't really qualify as a summer addiction as I have moved every 6 months over the last year and a half...This is one of those addictions that I desperately want to stop. I really dislike reminds me how much I hate having so much stuff. The only good thing about it is that it makes me get rid of clothes that I don't wear anymore and keepsakes that really aren't that keep-worthy.

Every time I get my boxes out to pack, I find stuff that I did not use the entire 6 months that I was in this place and that stuff goes to Good Will or gets chunk! It keeps me free of clutter that is for sure.

But even with those positives, I am ready to settle down so I don't have to keep taking my bed apart and moving all my furniture.

Recently, I was involved in a car accident and the cop looked at my drivers licence address and asked me how long I have lived here. I embarrassingly told him 5 years and he replied, "you should really get your address updated". I wanted to tell him, well once I find a house that I will live in for more than 6 months, I will get right on that. I can't imagine going to the DMV every 6 months, waiting in that long line, just to change my address. I think I hate going to the DMV more than I hate moving...

So those are my summer addictions. What are yours?!? I need to pick up a few more!

Thursday, June 5, 2008

School's Out for Summer...Reflections on My First Year

Well, I have been out of school for officially one week! I am not going to lie...I am loving it. Maybe in a month, I will get tired of being free and living the good life, but for now I am enjoying it!

This year was tough, amazing, challenging, encouraging, and exciting all wrapped into one. I learned a lot of things as God took my "this is what I am going to do after graduation" spiel and fleshed it out into my reality.

It is a little bit nerve wracking when you spend 5 years of your life talking about what you are going to do, and then meeting that moment where you stop talking about it and start doing it. You spend 5 years dreaming about your life after you graduate from college only to find, that for the first 4 months of it, all you can do it wish you were back in college! But by the time April hit, I pretty much settled with the reality that I will wake up, teach kids, grade papers, have 3-4 hours of free time, and then do it all over again the next day. I was thankful that the Lord allowed me to adjust to my new stage in life.

If I had to sum up my first year in one word, I think it would be...HUMILITY.

I was humbled by...

not being good at consistent discipline

not being able to teach and communicate some math concepts

not always having truth on my tongue

not always knowing what to say when a student tells me about a difficult situation

not always loving my students the way they needed to be loved

not always speaking kindly to my students

not always being patient and quick to forgive

and realizing that many days I tried to teach and train students in my own strength rather than relying on my Heavenly Father.

But that last one is really what I think the definition of humility is...God reminding us by little things in life, " are are can't do these things without me...they are impossible."

Even though I would wake up every morning and pray for my day that was ahead of me, many times I would close my Bible and journal and function as if that prayer and scripture were meaningless. Usually...those were my worst days.

Often my best days were the mornings that I would wake up, have no energy, no joy, no love for my students, and beg God to do a miracle in my heart. He was always faithful. He never let me give up.

This year was really interesting. I met a lot of people that were WAY different than me. I taught kids who went to a different high school than I did. I am not just talking about the name on the building...I am talking about the high school experience. I taught a hundred kids this year, 5 of my kids were either pregnant themselves or were father's of recently pregnant girls. I taught girls that already had 1-2 kids. I had girls talk to me about their boyfriend's that were in jail. I had girls talk to me about suicide. I didn't deal with this stuff when I was in high school...heck some of them were dealing with things I have still YET to experience. All of these situations made me question why I was the teacher standing before them. I questioned why I was the one God put as the ear to these conversations.

If I am real honest with you...I still don't know.

I wish I could say, I know exactly what God was doing and I could see how he was pursuing each of these students through me...but I can't say that.

Most of the time I had to teach them math, and there were not a lot of opportunities for me to point blank speak God's truth to them.

There were times I felt disregarded because I was white. I was ridiculed for wearing "white" clothes (i.e. things from Gap). I kept asking God, why me? Why did you call me here? They don't want to listen to me, they don't trust me...someone else would be more effective.

Honestly, I still ask these questions...I am still humbled...humbled by the fact that because I am human, I might not get to know all the answers. I might never get to understand what is going on. But I am thankful for God's promise of another year to do it all over again.

I can't really explain why I have the drive to come back another year apart from the hope of God and apart from the privilege of knowing teenagers I would never know apart from this job, teenagers that God cares very deeply for.

Maybe you thought this post would be all the wisdom I have learned and all I have seen God do in the last semester...but it isn't. It is a post about the journey of humility and about being on the road as His follower, one who FOLLOWS, and being excited that I know not what that means...

"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see."
-Hebrews 11:1

Sunday, May 25, 2008

Nothing But Smiles...

This is what my face has looked like for the past 36 hours. Yep...even when I am sleeping. Though it is not the most flattering picture of me, I think it best represents what I have been feeling.

Ryan has returned from Malawi! It has been a great time of talking (me in my man voice because I have a cold), laughing, and even some dancing (because we went to a wedding yesterday!!)

Ryan has adjusted well to the time change. He has been sleeping through the a big boy...sorry I just couldn't resist, as soon as I wrote that it sounded like I was talking about a newborn baby!

I am so glad to have him home...if this picture doesn't tell you all the emotions I am feeling then I don't know what else will!

God has been so faithful! I will write more about it later, but right now i am going to go enjoy the fact that I can talk face to face with my amazing boyfriend!

Friday, May 16, 2008

One Week...7 days...

That is right...7 days. Ryan will be home in exactly 7 days! I am so pumped. I have been enjoying my count down for the last 16 days! You see, I did not allow myself to count down the days until Ryan got home until the month of May. I did not want this 9 month trip in Malawi to be "counted down" in a sense. I wanted to be thankful that he was there. I wanted to enjoy hearing stories and knowing about Malawi on a deeper level than I would if Ryan didn't go.

So I haven't been counting. I figured once May happened it would be pretty much impossible for a numbers girl like me not to know how many days it was until he got home. I mean when it is the 3rd of may...of course he is coming home in 20 days. My mind would not be able to write the date without doing that simple calculation. So here I am...7 days away from him coming home.

Sometimes I just can't wrap my mind around the thought that he is coming home, and other times when I am going some where like watching my students in a choir concert and I have to leave early and walk a long way to my car in the dark...I just wish he was already home. You know girls are freaks because we just can't walk any where in the night without looking over our shoulder constantly and when we unlock our doors checking in the back seat before we get in. I want Ryan to come home because always looking over my shoulder for an attacker gives me a crick in my neck!

My students at Bryan High also have been counting down with me. They constantly ask me when "my man" is coming home. The new phrase they started on Thursday was, "your baby's daddy", which I had to quickly inform them that Ryan was NOT my baby's daddy...I didn't have any babies. To which their reply was..."well when he gets home then you can have some babies", to which I quickly, awkwardly said, "that is not going to be happening until we get married!" Teenagers say the craziest things!

But my favorite thing that happened on Thursday was that I was passing out the homework and one girl just said to me, "you got 8 days Ms. Eaker". Like we weren't even talking about Ryan. I was a little confused at first, but then I realized she was talking about Ryan coming home. I was like, how do you remember that! They can't remember 12 + 4 is 16, but they know how soon "my man" is coming home!! It made me laugh...and then feel a little special because I know they care about me.

7 days until I get to hear his voice and see his face at the same time, 7 days until I get to see his smile and give him a big hug, 7 days until I get to have long conversations with him without a delay or saying, "wait, it cut out, what did you say", 7 days until I get to hear him play beautiful piano music (well...he probably won't be doing that the FIRST night he comes home, but it sounds better), 7 days until I get to ride around with him and close my eyes because he always knows how to get places and I never have to worry about getting lost, 7 days until I get Ryan back!!

Alright, well that might have been too much for all of y'all, but I just wanted to share my excitement! Unfortunately, for most of you who read this, he will not be back in college station for a bit, so your count down isn't 7 days! Sorry! But I know we are all ready to hear his fingers play wonderful piano music...and he will be back to do that real soon!

May 23rd here I come!!