Beyond Blessed


Y’all I am BEYOND excited about this summer.  This is going to be the best summer I have ever had and I can’t wait to share my experiences with you.

First off, closing is in 11 days. Yep 11 days. But before I can get to that I have to get past 3 tests, 1 paper, and a poster board session. I know that I can do it!

In just 19 short days I will be boarding a plane for China! It’s hard to imagine that in less than 3 weeks I will literally be on the OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD! I have a lot of concerns about leaving the country but that’s for a different post, this one is all about the AMAZING OPPORTUNITIES that I have been given.

Qingdao University

24 hours after I get back from China, I will be heading to Florida. Yep, Florida. I get to spend 6 beautiful weeks in the Sunshine State completing my internship.

I’ve never been more than 2 hours from home and this summer I will be halfway across the world and then 15 hours from where my family is. Talk about scary!

I know that this summer is going to be the most perfect summer because I am going to be able to grow as an individual and as a student affairs professional.  If I had never realized that student affairs is what I want to do the rest of my life, I wouldn’t have been given these amazing opportunities.

Many people have been there for me and supported me in this journey and I can’t thank them enough for everything that they have done for me.

My summer of growth starts in just 11 days…

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Today is my 24th birthday. There isn’t really anything special about 24 that I know of but this was by far the best birthday I have ever had.

It all started yesterday…because everyone wants a birthday weekend not just a day.

I spent Saturday with some friends. We went to Little Rock and had a blast. At midnight my sister called and my nieces sang me happy birthday.

Sunday I got to sleep in a little bit and then my mom drove up to take me out to lunch. She brought my puppy dog with her so we ended up going to PetSmart so she could get out and run around. While looking I fell in love with a fish. He is the brightest blue I’ve ever seen. His name is Olaf. And he obviously came home with me.

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Then I went and had coffee with my lovely friend Larissa. It was a bitter sweet moment because that will be the last time for a while since she’s getting married in a week and moving to Arizona! She got me these BEAUTIFUL flowers.

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When I returned from getting coffee there was a note under my door that told me to check my office. I walked into my office to find a bunch of balloons, more flowers and the sweetest card from my staff. And one of my Cubs got me a movie poster from my favorite movie that I can’t wait to get framed and hang up!

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I finally settled down to watch some Walking Dead when I hear someone POUNDING on the doors to my building. I opened my apartment door ready to jump into RC mode to see Bri, Matt, and Stephen standing there with pizza and cupcakes. They decided to surprise me for my birthday. I had no idea they were coming and it was the perfect way to end my day. In the middle of the Walking Dead I also received an awesome video of the cutest kid wishing me a happy birthday.

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I often forget how blessed I am to have people like this who really care about me and want to celebrate me. I can’t thank everyone enough for what they do for me everyday. I wouldn’t be the person I am today if it weren’t for them and I can’t wait to see what the next year of my life holds. I know that I will be just fine with my friends by my side!

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5 years ago, I made the decision to attend UALR.
5 years ago, I had my life figured out, even with purple hair.
5 years ago, I knew where I would be in five years.

My freshman year, 2008

My freshman year, 2008

4 years ago, I made some amazing friends, and lost some too.
4 years ago, my life as I knew it, began to unravel.
4 years ago, someone gave me a second chance to prove myself.

RA Conference 2009

RA Conference 2009

3 years ago, I started to change my mind.
3 years ago, people showed me their true colors.
3 years ago, I had no idea where my life was going.

Rally to restore sanity and/or fear! 2010

Rally to restore sanity and/or fear! 2010

2 years ago, life was starting to make sense again.
2 years ago, I started thinking about what I wanted to be when I finally grew up.
2 years ago, I had no idea what God had in store for me.

Day at the park 2011

Day at the park 2011

1 year ago, I finally figured out what I was supposed to do with my life.
1 year ago, someone saw my potential.
1 year ago, I was terrified about what my future would hold.

Boat races 2012

Boat races 2012

Now, I finally believe in myself.
Now, I have friends who want me to succeed in life.
Now, I can see why nothing has worked out before.
Now, I see the person I was meant to be.

Birthday hats 2013

Birthday hats 2013

 

2013

2013

 

So, obviously keeping up with a blog is not easy during your senior year of college and when you have a job that takes up almost all of your free time.  But I promise that I am going to try to update this thing regularly.  Hopefully I stick with it this time!

What has happened since I was last here? A lot, so I will share my life in pictures! Some of these pictures are mine and some of them aren’t. I took them from Facebook.

The wild band that appeared in my apartment.

The wild band that appeared in my apartment.

My friend Bri and I. She's awesome.

My friend Bri and I. She’s awesome.

I RAN IN THE COLOR RUN! In a tutu!

I RAN IN THE COLOR RUN! In a tutu!

THE COLOR RUN!

My coworkers and I after the Color Run

I have eaten lots of cupcakes.

I have eaten lots of cupcakes.

The housing staff at Ms. Karen's wedding. Isn't she beautiful.

The Housing staff at Ms. Karen’s wedding. Isn’t she beautiful.

The hilarious women that I work with.

The hilarious women that I work with.

My nieces came to visit so I took them out for cupcakes.

My nieces came to visit so I took them out for cupcakes.

My Monday dinner group.

My Monday dinner group.

I am finally admitting this publicly, I Michelle do in fact like Larissa. She's good people.

I am finally admitting this publicly, I Michelle do in fact like Larissa. She’s good people.

I would be here all night/morning if I mentioned everyone that has been a part of my life over the last few months, but those are the people who have made this the time of my life and that is all I could hope for.

Overall, my life is pretty great. I know I complain a lot and I have no reason to but sometimes life just gets me down. But…

I have an awesome job where I work with some amazing people who make me laugh on a regular basis.  I have the best friends who are always there when I need them, even if that means going to the hospital with me until 2am just so I don’t go crazy.  I turned into a cheerleader for an intramural flag football team that ended up winning the playoffs. I became a part of a small group that met on Mondays and I honestly can say that they have changed my life. They are such beautiful women. My classes are getting harder, but I graduate in May and that is both scary and exciting, just don’t ask me what my plans are for after graduation.

I may not be the best person all the time, but I try and that is all that really matters in life. I just have to keep trying.

It’s after midnight and I should be asleep but I just had to write this post before I went to bed.  I spent all of Labor Day weekend in bed because I’m sick.  I have Hurricane Isaac to blame for that and Arkansas’ bipolar weather. But today was the first day back and there were so many things that happened today just made me feel loved and appreciated.  I wanted to share these things because we all know that normally I’m not a positive person but this is one of those days where I need to share the good!

1. Complete strangers talked to me in both of my classes today. I know that doesn’t sound like a big deal but most people say that I scare them so the fact that these girls felt like they could talk to me was awesome.  It wasn’t just the usual class chit chat either.  It was real conversations and it just made my day start off great.

2. I went to lunch and was just going to eat alone but I sat in my normal spot and by the time I left to go to work the table was full of people that I consider my friends. They came and sat with me and just made my day even better.

3. I went to my office and found an RA sitting there waiting to talk to me because she needed some advice on what to do with a resident.  I know that it’s my job and all but the fact that she actually waited for me to come back to my office to talk was awesome.

4. I had a total of FOUR RAs come into my office today while I was there and that is a record! I get lonely because my office is literally a hole in the wall so when people visit me it’s great.  I know they were just coming to pick things up but I’m going to say they stopped by just to say “hi”.

5. I went home and my uncle was there. This is the uncle that I have the most problems with but he was actually kind of nice to me.  This shocked me and made my day even better.

6. My dog was in the BEST mood. Sometimes when I go home she says hi, gets her treat and then walks away and doesn’t want anything to do with me but not today! She played with me and she rolled around on the floor with me.  She also cuddled with me which is my favorite thing to do with her. Then the other two dogs got jealous so we played fetch.

7. My grandparents said that my little cousin was over at the house today which meant that my favorite toy of all time was laying in the living room. I bought this toy 9 years ago in Michigan and I have never seen another one since.  This toy is like the best thing ever and it’s so simple, but every time I see it I play with it and crawl inside and put it on my head and try to trap the dogs in it.  But look at this thing, how could you not love it! I mean the look on this kid’s face tells you everything you need to know.

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8. I went to the Commons today to hang out with one of my RAs and some other housing people were in there as well. We just sat around and talked about life and everything.  It was the perfect ending to what seemed like the perfect day.  We discussed everything from current events (I have a quiz tomorrow) to SEC football (WOO PIG SOOIE!) and even relationships.  This housing staff really is like a family to me and I love every minute I get to spend with them.

I know that I am BEYOND blessed when I can look back on the craptastic weekend that I had and have a day like today where I am just overwhelmed by the good things in my life. I honestly have no idea what I would do without the people who surround me and support me. I need these people in my life and it’s becoming more and more real every day.

I leave in less than a year to go to grad school.  I have no idea where I’m going to end up but I know with these people in my life, I’m going to be okay.

Cindy Lee Who

Cindy has been my friend since the 8th grade.  Now we might not have still been friends if she hadn’t moved off to Germany for 4 years, but we are still friends.

She and I both hate girls.  We both get along better with males.  We both like strange things.  We usually like the same things.

She’s awesome and she will tell you how awesome she is.  She’s not afraid to tell you that.

I love that she is in my life and I’m very thankful that she moved to Lonoke and then that she moved back to Lonoke.

Not many people have a friend that they can go to for anything and everything, but Cindy is awesome like she says and she is there.  I would rather have one true friend than a hundred fake friends and Cindy Lee is my true friend.  Whether she likes it or not.  Muah ha ha ha ha ha

This is the only picture I have of the two of us that doesn't include other people.

Most people hate their boss.  They feel like the boss is always looking down on them or always telling them to do something and that they are never good enough.  My boss is nothing like that.  She is helpful and gives awesome advice.  She knows when to be “The Boss” but she also knows when to be a friend.

Getting the RA job has been great.  It has changed me and made me a better person.  I now stand up for myself and for what I believe in.  I also know how to deal with situations that most people will never have to deal with and my boss is the person who prepared me for that.

She is awesome and she is a great person to talk to.  She is who I go to when things go wrong in my life.  She has helped me out when I really needed it and even when I didn’t know that I needed help.  She calls me to her office just because she needed to tell me that I was doing a good job.  She sends encouraging text messages and text messages telling me to pull my head out of my ass.  (Seriously, she sent me this…it was over Twitter but that’s what she said to me)

Boss Lady,

Thank you for everything that you have done for me.  You have been there when I really needed someone and you were there for me when you didn’t have to be.  I try to tell you thank you for the things that you do for me but I know that I forget sometimes.  You are helping to shape me into the woman I am becoming and I thank you for that.

Thanks for everything you do!

Pazzi

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