What an amazing gift it has been to serve the homeless and the mentally ill in this capacity. God has opened doors for me to meet key stakeholders in our county and has opened my eyes to a vision He has for this population. He has also used this job to challenge me, sharpen my character and expose me to new opportunities. As I’ve gone through some of the internal battles of navigating my way through the politics of working for the county, God has used the story of David to bring me strength, encouragement and rejuvenation when I’ve need it most.
- Bobo’s MBA
Watching Brooke put on that cap and gown and walk across the stage to claim the MBA she worked so hard for was one of the best big sister moments I’ve had. I’m so proud of you Bobo!!
For those who missed the story the first time, I received a special surprise when I visited the Old Jail in Vernon, TX. As I was taking photos on the second floor of the jail, I was joined by a man who in the most southern hillbilly accent you can imagine, uttered the following words, “Can you believe I was in here when I was 17-years-old?” As I turned around, “Cotton,” the name by which he called himself, wearing a red and navy plaid shirt with blue-jean overalls, went on to point at the jail cell in which he slept 45 years prior. When the owner of the museum came to join us, I shared my genuine excitement to learn that “Cotton” had been jailed here. The owner then replied, “Sure I can believe it, I was arrested and brought here twice before I cleaned my act up and joined the Navy.” Random encounters with strangers and one-of-a-kind stories– two of the benefits of traveling alone.
- Exploring The Last Bookstore in Los Angeles
Of all the bookstores I have visited so far, The Last Bookstore in Los Angeles has been my favorite. Books, books and more books. Books for sale, book nooks in the window with a view of downtown, art made of books, tunnels of books… This bookstore is a must-see for anyone who visits Downtown L.A.
- Travel, Travel, Travel
Los Angeles, California, San Francisco California, Vernon, TX, Archer City, TX, Wichita Falls, TX, Graham, TX, Charleston, South Carolina and Savanah, Georgia – Oh the places you’ll go. While I wasn’t able to make a trip out of the country– as I originally planned, I sure made up for it by packing in an extra stop or two in the states. Here are a few of my favorite photos from my adventures in 2015.
- Auntie Bran Bran visits her nuggets
My love bugs are growing up so quickly! For those who don’t know, I have 7 brothers and sisters, which means I get to be auntie to many munchkins and nuggets, although I’m sure the big girls don’t appreciate it when I call them that. My visit to Georgia added an array of new memories to the Auntie Bran Bran album in my head.
4. Reuniting with Megan and going to a Dodgers game
I met Megan when I was teaching English in Daejeon, Korea and she quickly became one of my favorite people in Korea. Megan is a beautiful person with an equally beautiful spirit. Visiting California provided me the opportunity to reconnect and spend time with her sweet self. I also enjoyed the added bonus of attending my first L.A. Dodgers game.
- Meeting Cristie Penn and speaking at the book launch for Key of Truth
When I attended Cristie’s equipping class, craftily titled Unlocking God’s Divine Design, I deeply desired to hug her and thank her in person for the amazing word she gave. As I stood in the long line of other people who had the same thought, I nervously anticipated what I would say. She was so warm and embracing and even though she hadn’t a clue who I was, she seemed just as eager to meet me as I did her. She left a lasting impression and I just knew I needed to connect with her further and I will be forever grateful I did. Meeting Cristie has been one of the best gifts I have received this year. I have been incredibly blessed by her presence in my life. In October, I had the privilege of speaking at the launch party for her book, Keys of Truth. If you haven’t yet bought your copy of her book, click here to buy it now. This is the best book you will read about understanding yourself and understanding the opposite sex.
Visits with my dad’s side of the family are sadly few and far between so getting an unexpected visit with them in May was an extra special treat. A visit to the Fort Worth Stockyards, stuffing our faces with BBQ, and a race through a human maze (where my 7-year-old niece schooled her Aunt who had already completed that maze twice before) added some colorful memories to our time together.
- Celebrating mom and dad’s 50th birthdays
The siblings and I had a lot of fun surprising both parents for their 50th birthday parties this year. Mom and dad, I love you very much and sincerely hope I look half as good as you two do when I hit 50.