Monday, May 16, 2011

"How do you know?"

Saturday night....

A peppermint mocha in hand, I thought I was going to spend the evening playing at my park, Lakeside, in fort wayne.  As we drove past all of the beautiful houses, I pointed out my favorites to Clarke. The roses were going to be so beautiful at Lakeside; I knew it.

My heart dropped. That's my overly dramatic way of saying I was disappointed when we saw there was some sort of soiree happening at my park...and obviously, we would not be welcome....even though, I appreciate that park more than a bunch of kids in fancy attire that are 17. I'm not bitter or anything.

Who knew that plan B could end up even better than plan A...

We decided to just move onto the next thing on our list. Dinner at Dash-In. This place is like home, except without any stress or expectations to keep it tidy. It can take a long time to eat there, just because you want to savor every moment. At Dash-In you're guaranteed: sweet waitresses. food that is a whole wonderful experience of its own (like bruschetta grilled cheese. yum.) an atmosphere that's relaxed. older couples and young, college kids. Great beer. Raspberry iced tea that still tastes good 2 hours later. Happiness...i'm telling you, I've never seen a grouchy person in the place.

When we finally dragged ourselves out of dash-in, with a to-go cup full of raspberry iced tea, we contemplated many options before settling on Arthur. The movie. We went. It wasn't what i expected. The humor was better...actual brilliant, witty lines. The characters and story reminded me of a 1950's movie. And the story actually made me happy and then made me cry. Yes, I cried over Russell Brand and his nanny.

The night only got better when we walked out of the movie theatre and it was raining. Not just any rain, but that perfectly soft, cool rain that my friend, Aisha, describes as "romantic" rain.

I used the rain as my excuse (not that anyone ever needs an excuse to wear Hunter boots) to wear my red Hunter boots, and I jumped in every little puddle that would give me a tiny splash. One of my friends told me that when they ask for her name at starbucks, she always just makes one up. They didn't ask for a name, so I found some lipstick and did the job myself. Estee Lauder, you should start a line of fancy pens.

We drove home to the sound of me and My Chemical Romance, belting "Welcome to the Black Parade." Norah Jones, Stevie Wonder, "So Paid," by Akon....our taste in music is truly refined.

While the possibilities at wal-mart are endless, somehow a 21 year-old women walks away with Raid (I hate bugs, okay!), a number 9 to replace the worn-out one on our mailbox, and peonies that I can't wait to plant.

The moral of the story: the only sensible way to end a saturday night is with a cup of starbucks and a trip to wal-mart. And: plan B is almost always better than plan A...not that we ever really know if we don't actually experience plan A, becuase we have nothing to compare plan B to.

Love, Always, Jo

Friday, May 13, 2011

The magic of ordinary days...

My best friend left for Kenya today. It's her 19th birthday.

On birthdays, we celebrate life. We celebrate the fact that we were given it and how many years we've been part of it. Every birthday we look back on how old we are, all that has happened, or how far we are from where we used to be.

As I eat ice cream, in honor of Aisha Caye, I'm celebrating the fact that God knows the ways we take, our coming and going.

Today I celebrate: That God has taught us His beauty. That His beauty is not as well seen in perfect birthdays with presents, but that His beauty is seen in the unexpected. Birthdays spent on flights to Kenya. Birthdays spent preparing for 10 unplanned weeks of adventure, learning to live and love in Mombasa. Because really, birthdays are His day...the day he began to let us see that He can make our mess into something beautiful.

Aisha Caye, that you were born is just the beginning....that you are able to truly live through Him is what makes every day, birthday or not, the real celebration. I love you, always. -Jo