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Showing posts from April, 2010

The Friday Playlist: All around goodness

No song titles this week. Just artists. No classics like Cash, or Willie, or Ani or U2. I figure you already know about those guys (or girls)...these are a little more recent ( at least to me)...although I have been listening to some for years.
I couldn't just pick one song...there are lots. Back in the day when you used to buy a whole album...these would be good all the way through.

Blind Pilot
Molly Venter
The Weepies
JJ Heller
Jon Foreman
Sleeping at Last
William Fitzsimmons
Laura Marling
Matt Nathanson
Five Way Friday

the long version

My most recent tattoo is Hebrew lettering for I AM. (and yes I've had it for a while, and I have 3 more in case you were wondering)
I never quite know how to explain it.
And when you put a tattoo on your wrist, people are going to ask.
I have a short version where I just tell them it means “Yahwey” (which most simply put means I am), and if they keep staring at me blankly I explain that it is a Hebrew name for God. Not that I’m trying to call myself or compare myself with God. It is more like a reminder. That usually does the trick and I can continue on my merry little way.
But really that’s not why at all.

When Moses asked God his name, this is how he responded.
God said to Moses, "I am who I am . This is what you are to say to the Israelites: 'I AM has sent me to you.' " Exodus 3:13-14 NIV That word am has to be one of the most important in the English language. You might argue that "is" and "are" are equally important. I disagree.
Is is not person…

less than perfect

Aoccdrnig to a reseearch at an Elingsh
uinervtisy, it deosn't mttaer in waht oredr the
ltteers in a wrod are, the olny iprmoetnt tihng
is taht frist and lsat ltteer is at the rghit pclae.
The rset can be a toatl mses and you can
sitll raed it wouthit porbelm. Tihs is bcuseae
we do not raed ervey lteter by it slef but the
wrod as a wlohe

OK, I know that I am guilty of a typo or two (or five in every post)....but I am not drunk. And if we are friends in real life some of you might think that is just one of my usual text messages.
But it is on purpose and I have a point. Promise. The previous paragraph was a slide from my physics lecture yesterday. And even though I was talking about vision and light and lenses and optical illusions, This particular slide warmed my heart a little and taught me a lot more about perception.

I have never struggled with perfection.
But sometimes I think maybe I should.
That maybe good moms never skip bath time and just let their kid fall asleep on the couch because…

mother mother

Growing up I had a mental file going where I would regularly store away pieces of information for later in life when I would surely need it.
I titled this file
“Ways I won’t be like my mother”

And when I was ten I filed things away like
“I will never make my kids make their bed”
“if my daughter wants to have her whole class over for a sleepover, I will let her. And I’ll even order pizza”

And when I was in junior high I added to it
“I will buy my kid expensive name brand clothes because if she is popular she will be happy”
“13 is not too young for a boyfriend”

And in highschool
“If she wants to pierce her naval why should I stand in the way of personal expression”
“It is way too embarrassing to call my daughters friends and ask if their parents will be home. I will just trust her.”

And in college
“Cs aren’t so bad. At least it is passing.”
“Padre is the perfect location for Spring Break”

And then I got married.
And I still filed away a few thoughts.
“like he can get his own damn beer”


People always talk about defining moments.
Phone calls or test results or near misses.
But I seem to have many more defining places.
In the hill country off of FM 1340.
Hospital rooms.
Blue Ford rangers.
And basements.

This weekend I went to a college reunion for a campus ministry that I went to back at Tech. And I was a little apprehensive and nervous because going back always seems a little like moving in the wrong direction.
But sometimes going back pushes you forward.

And I hesitantly walked down the stairs and tried to sort out the newness of the old room.
The same room in which my husband asked me out on our first date.

After about 20 minutes of wandering around seeing people that I forgot that I forgot.
And many more that I fondly remembered.
We all exchanged the usual small talk.
Where we live, what we do, how many kids we have. That pretty much covers it.

But eventually the band began to play.
And we sang a song or two a little stiffly.
And just like the lyrics all came back to me,
Something i…

Friday Playlist - Travelin Tunes

This weekend I will be spending lots of hours in the car…so I have compiled a little road music. Sorry, no clever commentary...I haven't packed yet and leave very soong :)

Chasing Pavements- Adele
See the World – Gomez
Wagon Wheel – Old Crow Medicine Show
Travelin Thru –Jason Castro (or Dolly)
On the Road Again – Willie Nelson
Drive - REM
Fast Car – Tracy Chapman
Runnin Down a Dream– Tom Petty
Sweet Home Alabama – Jewel (yes, Jewel)
I’ve Been Everywhere – Johnny Cash

ok, I know it's a tad corny...but I like it :)

my so called haircut

I have always been very low maintenance when it comes to my hair.
I have even dried my hair by hanging my head out a car window before.
And I can totally rock a ponytail. As in everyday for a month.
When it comes to haircuts, styles and products…I am cheap, lazy and not usually afraid to try something new.

First lets address the cheap:
I consider Pantene “fancy shampoo”
Conditioner is about the only “product” I regularly purchase…and I am pretty sure that isn’t really a product anyways. I would love a Chi but can’t make myself spend 100$ on something made to intentionally burn my hair. (but yes I do have a much more moderately priced flat iron that I use most days...well the days it isn't in a ponytail). I also only get a hair cut like 2-3 times a year. This is part cheap. Part lazy.

Which leads me to the lazy. Did you read the part about drying my hair out a car window? Or the one about only getting a cut 2-3 times a year? Also I loathe the round brush. Too much work. Most days I sit o…

the funk

The last few days I have been in a funk. A little emotional. Tired. Not the most fun girl to be around. I’m sure it has something to do with the fact that I haven’t run in over a week, all the rain or maybe the crap I have been eating. (like the donuts i had for breakfast).

It is a definitately a funk.
And hanging out with friends and coffee haven’t seemed to shake it.

Today on the way home from a friend’s house Owen says from the backseat. “Mommy, when we get home can you turn on some music and I’ll show you my new dance move”.

And we got home. And I got the mail (bills) and called the husband about our broken AC, fed the dog, checked the messages, looked at my mess of a living room and forgot all about his new moves.

Until he asked again. To which I immediately cranked up the ipod and let the dancing begin.

And suddenly my funk turned into The Funk. A superdelic funk with moves I've never seen before. And then some I had...

I kid you not….my 4 year old son started doing the sprink…

day job

what teaching highschool can do to a girl.

bigger than a mustard seed

Flashback to your 2nd grade Sunday School class.
Remember that verses about the mustard seed?

He replied, "If you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mulberry tree, 'Be uprooted and planted in the sea,' and it will obey you. Luke 17:6

He replied, "Because you have so little faith. I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you." Matthew 17:20

I have a friend with faith bigger than a mustard seed. She knows way more bible verses than me. Loves with a big giant heart and spent her first year out of college serving overseas.

But right now it doesn’t feel like it.
She is full of doubt and fear and anger and grief. Or at least I would be if I was her.
She has experienced the worst kind of loss and is facing the possibility of losing again.

And to that I want to tell God that it is too much.
To back off.
That they need …


I think occasionally that my kids are allergic to totally normal things.
Like me talking on the phone.
Because they can be just fine and content sitting in the backseat…
Until I try to call a friend,
And then sudden screams burst forth from the back seat.

Owen likes to tell people that he is allergic to chocolate.
Which he is not.
But apparently he doesn’t like it, so he says he is allergic.
Which is just crazy. ( the not-liking chocolate part).

They are also allergic to clean shirts which can only be remedied by staining them before leaving the house.
Owen is allergic to shoes and socks (stripped the second we get in a house …anyone’s house) and Tess has the opposite allergy. She must wear shoes at all times (anybodie's shoes). She throws fits when we take them off for bed.
And they are surely allergic to waiting in any kind of line (more screaming…which occasionally comes in handy when people gladly let us ahead of them at Target).
My music ( Shaun has brain washed them and they only like F…

career counseling

The other night I met with one of my old favorite students.
She was smart and funny and played soccer and liked good music and was a complete smart ass.
How could I not like her?

I could see a little bit of me in her.
And some of the rocky she was traveling down and not talking about.
I knew.
Because I’d been down my own paths.
It when you look at someone and see them going where you have already been,
You can’t help but want to go a little ways with them.
And ease the burden a bit.

Neither of us are really sappy like that.
So mostly we just talked about music and soccer….but we would occasionally venture into heavier topics like parents and love and worth.

And now she is a little bit more grown up, but finding herself on a less rocky but narrowing path…
So I took her out for some “career counseling”.
And I ate her chips and sucked on my drink and tried to make her think about her future.
And question where she is and where she wants to be and who she wants to bring with her.
And I kept telling her t…

The Friday Playlist: Mix Tape

When my friend Julie got married she wrote all of her girls these amazing letters that were sappy and funny and great. And the best part about mine was what it said on the front of my envelope
“Queen of the Mixed Tape”.
And I loved the title.
Because making a good mixed tape is really an art.
One that I took super seriously in high school and college. Not only did I spend hours choosing the PERFECT combination of songs, but I also spent hours making the best collage cover that seventeen magazine could provide.

I could really elaborate on the fine art of mix tape making….but think I’d just start to sound a lot like the movie High Fidelity so instead I just think I’ll let you put that one on your queue. (because John Cusak says it better than me anyways).

A little over a week ago I got a mix cd in the mail from one of my favorite people ever. And I haven’t been able to take it out of the cd player. (And there hasn’t really been an actual cd in my cd player in ages) If I switch cars it comes w…

love mercy

Recently I was sitting in a coffee shop with a friend.
(which could be almost any day)
But on this particular day there was a guy sitting at a table near me about a chapter into Irresistible Revolution by Shane Claiborne.
I warned him to be careful reading that book.
He laughed awkwardly.
And I said, no really, be careful.
It’s a tough book to read.
And try and live your life the same way afterwards.

And so is this book.
And it is slightly easier to relate to than a radical from Philidelphia (who I happen to love).
Because she was a little more like me.
Suburban and comfortable.
With an unshakable sense that it is all a bit too much.
Too much and lacking all at the same time.
The book is about Lisa and her teenage daughter’s trip to Swaziland with Children's Hope Chest.

So before I even read this book I was sold.
Tom Davis and his amazing organization. check.
Lisa Samson ( uhm…have you read Quaker Summer….some amazing fiction….if not check it out from the library TODAY!) check. check.

But this boo…

the littlest

My son is the littlest.
He is a full head shorter than everyone else on his team.
We get hand me down bikes and clothes from my friend’s 3 year old ( we are almost 5).
He still has a pair of 18 month jeans that fit ( mostly we wear 3Ts though).
And the other day when I picked him up from school his whole class was lined up. And he was the shortest. Even compared to the girls.

I worry about this. Mostly about what will happen when he gets to junior high. Or when his little sister surpasses him (and she is well on her way, she must have gotten my dad’s tall genes).
But he doesn’t seem to know yet.

Every few weeks or so he asks me to measure him against the door frame so he can see how much he is growing. The frame is filled with little sharpie marks and ages. More often than not when we stand against the door it is in fact time to make a new mark.
Progress in centimeters.
And just yesterday he told me that he was tall.
I didn’t have the heart to tell him that he wasn’t. And probably never wou…

for shame

I like to think that I'm pretty honest and open on this blog.
I'm usually going for transparent and authentic.

But I've been hiding a big ugly secret.

Some of you type A perfect moms who actually like vaccuming might want to look away.
Because I am a slob.

My desk is covered in handouts, things to copy and forms that were due last week.
My bedroom floor is covered with clothes more often than not.
You could sprain an ankle on my living room floor if you don't keep an eye out for legos and hot wheels.
I don't change the sheets every week.
Just for starters.

But what I am most ashamed of is my car.
It is hideous.
The only car I know that is worse than mine is my husbands which has a foul unidentifiable odor.
Really, and there is only a short list of people that I will allow in my car.
And most of them will gladly offer to drive theirs. And I happily play the passenger and take control of the radio.

And this isn't just some cute and funny blog. I mean it.
I am ashamed of my car. …

on blogging

Once I had a friend who wrote something on her blog about not wanting to want to sacrifice the opportunity to live life for the chance to write about it.

And that has always troubled me a bit.
Because I think maybe I have been afraid of being guilty of that.
Worried that maybe I should put this blog thing on hiatus for awhile and see what happens. That I should step away from the lap top and do the dishes or grade some papers or play yet another game of Candy Land.

But this isn’t a breaking up blog post.

With some evalutation, I have come to the opposite conclusion.
I live better when I write about it.

I process nothing internally. It all has to be outloud.
Or in this case. Typed out.
So writing about it. Often gets me to a point that I didn’t know was there before I started typing.
And the rest of the time, I just ramble.

And also the potential for writing about something makes me a little bit braver. It gives me that extra incentive to try something new. To learn someone’s story or to push mys…

the finish line

This afternoon me and my husband ran the Fort Worth Mud Run.
Ok we ran some of it and we walked ……..and we crawled and climbed and waded the 6.2 miles in our boots and long pants.
It was hard.
There were 15 or so obstacles along the course like over-unders, walls to climb, pits to slither through and nets to go under and lots of running.
There were mini Marines ( like 8 year olds) yelling at you to keep running. To jump in or they’d push you. That their grandmother would get a better time than I would.
Occasionally we would stop to catch our breath or to pour mud out of our boots. I needed my husband behind me to give me a good shove over a wall or out of a pit. And I skipped the top plank of the dreaded “Stairway to Heaven”…which is not at all a stairway and more of a giant really tall ladder. (did I mention I am afraid of heights). But mostly we ran, even with our boots full of mud, and We Finished.
Slowly but surely and together.
Wet and dirty and aching.
Today there are blisters and cramp…

the least and the lemonade

On the second Saturday of every month a handful of people from my church go here.
I always intend to go with them. And I have a time or two (another post from another time here). But usually I just sleep in or go get coffee with a friend or jet off to a soccer game or birthday party.
But this Saturday. I went.
The group serves homeless people lunch in a park next to a large homeless shelter (the one in Same Kind of Different Than Me…if you’ve read the book) and the park is always full of "residents" as we are supposed to call them.

On the way to church I was feeling warm gooey good from doing something that I know God calls us to do. For doing something that I am passionate about, even though I don’t act on it near as often as I’d like. And I couldn’t wait for the drive home where I’d feel even better about myself.

After cooking and loading up we talked a little safety and had a short devotional.
It was the obvious verse.
The one about the least of these.

"For I was hungry and …

The Friday Playlist: Shuffle

I am cheating this week because Tess has had croup and strep and I have had very little sleep. I'm behind and tired and the last thing I need to be doing is playing on instead I just put my ipod on shuffle and promise the type in the first 20 songs that come up (a double dose since I skipped last week and all).

1. When Your Minds Made Up: Glen Hanssard&amp and Markete Irglova. This is from the movie Once which is so so good. (as is the song, starting to think this might not be as embarrassing as I was afraid it might be).

NEW RULE: I will skip songs that are my husbands...b/c I really have no commentary for the Wombats or every Flogging Molly song ever written.

2. The Proffesor (Live): Damien Rice. Warning Explicit Lyrics which maybe those of you who haven't seen this fella in concert didn't see coming. He is not sleepy in real life. He rocks out and has a potty mouth. This song even has parts in French. No idea what it is saying....but it is probably bad t…

& other lies I tell myslef

That cheetos and gogurt counts as a healthy dinner for my kids.
That my jeans shrunk in the dryer. A lot.
That you can’t really tell that I didn’t shave past my ankles in these pants.
That no one will think less of me when I show up to a kids birthday party with the present wrapped in paper bags and duct tape.
That I can hit snooze one more time and still get to work on time.
That I have the time and money to stop and get coffee on the way to work.
That I will actually grade all those papers I brought home with me.
That no one will notice that I am wearing one St. Patricks day sock and one Easter bunny sock. (so got busted on that one).
That I will be able to take a nap when I get home.
That no one notices that I don’t really edit my blog.
That my sons pants still fit ( at least most 4 year olds don’t know what highwaters are).
That 31 is still young and hip.
That if I put on fancy earrings and mascara no one will notice that I didn't wash my hair.
That nachos with extra jalapenos are a good i…

skin on

Sometimes you need a little more than facebook love.
Or even double digit comments.
Sometimes you need real live friends.
The kind with skin that you can touch.

So today I did a brave thing.
And I so won’t be posting this today
Or any time soon
Because I’m not that brave.
So I’ll hold on to this post awhile.
Until it is funny.

But this morning I walked downstairs and asked someone to go get coffee with me.
That was my very brave thing.

And here is why.
Because me and the girl aren’t really friends yet.
We have worked together for awhile.
But it is a big building and I could go weeks without seeing her.
And we are facebook friends and occasionally comment to the other.
But I really don’t think that counts.
But she reads my blog.
And likes it.
And comments.
And because of I can tell we like some of the same things ( like Jen Lancaster and Jesus)…I thought maybe we should try and be real life friends instead of just virtual ones.
Seeing how, we work in the same building and all.

But somehow it was way easi…

a little whine and cheese

So today I am guest posting over here...while my friend Sarah soaks in her new baby boy.

I felt tremendous pressure to be snarky and funny and still somehow a little sentimental like my friend Sarah usually go check out her blog ( and read my post!).

some un-holy moments from holy week

1.This picture. If we are facebook friends you have probably seen it. My husband hates it…so I’ll probably delete it soon. But it is too funny not to show.
There are a couple of things I want to point out: Notice the bunny ears and the Star Wars Easter bucket. We were about to hunt eggs and he decided that he needed to go to the bathroom. There was already one little girl in the restroom and Tess would have thrown an all out fit if I took her inside. And why do that anyways if there is a nice flowerbed that can be watered. If this were my house on my cul-de-sac full of boys there would be nothing unusual about this photo. (The give away should be that the flowerbed isn’t full of weeds). But it isn’t my house, it is my friends in a slightly nicer neighborhood on a much higher trafficked street. Also she was not around ( she was hiding the eggs) to ok the “watering”…b/c she so would not have been ok with it. She also wouldn’t have been ok with the fact that he was aiming for that …

plop plop fizz fizz

Last night (or early this morning) my chest started burning.
I could literally feel the acid seeping up my esophagus.
After multiple failed attempts to go back to sleep I finally got up and fumbled around for some antacids before eventually finding slumber.

This isn’t normal.
But I know exactly what it means…
Besides the fact that maybe I should have skipped the spicy wings at the movie last night.
But that it is time to slow down.

And rest.
And stay in.
And pick up dinner.
To give completion grades.
To maybe skip a party ( we have 4 in an 8 day time frame…plus 3 Easter parties).
To run later.
To hit snooze one more time.

Lately I haven’t been firing on all 4 cylinders.
I’ve been showing up to the wrong places on the wrong days and at the wrong times.
My husband is losing patience with this not-so-there version of me.

And yes. Plugging all the appointments and practices and parties into my iphone might help. I’m not really a planner kind of girl. I’m just used to remembering things. And I’m used to be…

Easter Sunday

I'm all out of words...but here are a few pics from our day.

Good Friday

The Friday playlist is on hold until next week....instead I'm posting something I wrote about this time last year:

My kids are sick alot. The topic makes frequent blog posts. We have toured the local ERs, we have had staples in the head and glued up a gaping chin. We have had specialists, and PT, and Xrays, many many breathing treatments and even one extended stay. We even spent four long months in a helmet.

But right now seems like an all time low.


Which isn't nearly as scary as it sounds.
We aren't in a hospital.
O seems mostly fine.
An icky cough, a nagging fever
But people die from pneumonia.
And this is the second time this season that he has had it.
The damn internet has me convinced that he has some kind of autoimmune disease or cancer or worse. And my friends drop less than subtle hints that maybe he should be tested.

Other than worried mom mode and about 100$ worth of drugs.
It is a normal night in the Hurst household.
Shaun went to a movie. (ok, that isn't no…

Holy Thursday: Just me

This morning I left my house at 6:11.
About 20 minutes earlier than usual ( ridiculous time to go to work I know, but that is a topic for another blog post).
And I pulled into my church parking lot.
An almost empty church parking lot.
I read in my church bulletin last week that they chapel would be open from 6-8 am for anyone who wanted to take communion on this Holy Thursday.
I love the act of communion and have been getting up early every day this week to observe Holy Week. And so I thought that this morning instead of sitting on my couch reading and quiet that maybe I should go to the chapel instead.

But after I pulled in, I immediately thought about turning around and getting a coffee instead.
I was a little uncomfortable about the idea of showing up at church at 6:27 am.
And I didn’t know what to expect.
If this would be weird.
If I was supposed to say anything or do anything special that I didn’t know about.
And I worried about who would be there.
If there would be a lot of people, busin…