Allergic reactions and current reads…

I am alive, I promise.

I know it’s been a while and I truly apologize. I’ve just run out of things to talk about. Life is moving and yes, there is a lot going on, but nothing that seems blog worthy. I hope that changes in the near future.

In other news, I almost updated the other night, but I discovered something.

I have pollen-food allergy syndrome

Who knew there was a such thing? I did not. I knew my allergies were bad . I knew pollen had been high, but I had no idea what was in store.

I went grocery shopping the other day and chose to buy fruit. I bought pre-sliced watermelon/honey-dew/cantaloupe combo. That night, I got home and decided to dig in. I had no idea that apparently if you’re allergic to ragweed pollen (and apparently I am) that there can be some kind of cross-reaction that has to do with …bananas, watermelon, honeydew and cantaloupe. It explains why I break out sometimes when eating bananas and it produces an explanation for why the other night I broke out in a horrible rash, since I ate 3 out of 4 of those…..NOT pretty.

I’m in a very reflective mood today. I just finished a book last night and it took me into deep contemplation mode. The book was “Beneath the Night Tree” by Nicole Baart. Her books are incredible…this series was incredible. I started it in 2007 and it has become a permanent part of my heart and had a huge affect on some crucial years of my life. The book I just finished was the final installment and for me it felt like the end of an era. Those books are some of my favorites because they are realistic, they are laced with truth and honesty that is a rare find in fiction these days. Although the first book, “After the Leaves Fall” left me weeping, it planted something in me that I would draw from in many days to come. I am sad to see the story end, but I am happy with the way it ended.

Now that I’m done rambling about that I will say good night. When something entertaining occurs in my life then I will return to share.

Until then, hope you are well!

-Ashlin

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This weekend.

Webster himself could not find words to describe this weekend & all that happened.

My sister graduated…

I learned a lot…

I heard a ton of truth that was probably long overdue…

I was given the opportunity to make some choices…

I still haven’t made some of them…

Awkward times were had…

Funny times soon followed…

We walked in a torrential downpour in Asheville and got SOAKED…

Jordan and I did a small hike and got pretty muddy…

Life was lived and in a short weekend I was given more than I know to say…

Congrats Jords! I love you!

He cannot deny who He is.

I had a melt down this week. I’m talking an all out, water works included, melt down. I was having one of those, “i’m just not spiritual today” days and just let it all fall out.

Then, as always, events inevitably followed that made me realize what a complete idiot I am. God began to not only speak and tell me the coolest thing, ever… he confirmed what I needed to hear most and he started providing in ways beyond my wildest dreams. Needless to say, I felt really ridiculous for breaking down earlier in the week.

I think there’s something to that though. I think God is teaching me so much about grace during this season. It’s okay to not always have together, to not always have a huge amount of faith.. he’s teaching me truth behind 2 Timothy 2:13.

“If we are faithless, he remains faithful, for he cannot deny who he is.”

I’ve quoted it a million times, but over the past two days I have seen it come to life. Last night held so much breakthrough for me. While I’d considered not even attending a certain event, somehow, God got me there and in spite of my own issues and fleshly problems, he spoke. It wasn’t a huge fire, or a huge wind… but, of course, it was that gentle and quiet whisper, the one I have grown to love so much over these past few months.

I always wait and want the earthquake or the fire, but sometimes when those things occur, I forget them quickly, but there’s something about the whisper that buries itself down inside of me and even if I try, I cannot lose the grip it has on me.

After encountering a huge amount of INTERNAL breakthrough, I came home to a gift of external breakthrough. It meant so much more to me after what I’d just experienced. It was the cherry atop the sundae. It was God in his goodness and I was able to feel and perceive his love and provision in a way I never had before.

I write this to encourage you that breakthrough will come. It is often not in the manner in which you expect, but one that is far better. It is often times that the internal breakthrough occurs before the outer. Trust him. Although you’ve heard it a million times, take this as a million and one… He is good.

Bazaar First Impressions.

The past week has held the most bazaar first impressions for me. I think it’s important to consider the first words you say to someone, they could make or break how that person views you.

The first is the least bazaar. A guy, walking across campus proceeds to yell at me “why aren’t you waving at me?” Apparently it’s completely unheard of not to wave to someone you’ve never met. Can’t imagine what my facial expression was.

Then, there was the sweet, precious lady who stood in front of me for five minutes saying. “oh my goodness, you are just the cutest thing. Oh, is she not the most adorable thing? She is! She is!” Obviously, this one was my favorite… I wanted to go home with her and live with such encouragement forever.

Ah, then there was the hilarious one. Imagine this: I’m at school, speaking to a friend from a class, when a guy  whom I have never met chose his first words to me to be: “would you like to ride my unicycle?” as he pulled out a full blown unicycle from behind his back. Needless to say, I was flabbergasted and wanted to die laughing. I nicely declined and said I didn’t think I possessed such talent.

Then there was today, the most bazaar of all. I’m in a quaint diner in my small town with my precious grandmother and I met a man whose first words to me were, “I was in love with your mother.” It goes without saying that…He wins. Way to make an impression, sir…truly.

All Dressed Up…and Nowhere to go.

Let me just say, I’m sitting here in my bed, with my hair fixed and looking good and I’m staying in tonight.

I had every intention to go to church while I was getting ready…but then, when almost leaving, I looked at the time and realized that I was already late and realized that I had so much to do and that I really needed to stay home and get it done. I’m not in the least bit upset that I got dressed and ready though. The truth is, I’ve looked like POOP all week long and have barely been presentable and it was just nice to be able to look in the mirror and say “okay! I haven’t completely lost all appeal in life!”

So, I just wanted to say…sometimes it’s totally acceptable and necessary to be all dressed up & going nowhere.

Restaurant Rubber Neckers

When my dad used to drive a truck, they had this expression to use for “a person who cranes, stains or otherwise awkwardly turns their head and stares while passing the scene of something interesting.” These people were called rubber neckers. It is not uncommon to spot a rubber necker on the road when an accident has occurred. Everyone starts driving 30 mph under the speed limit and staring intensely. What do you do though when you encounter several in the restaurant you’re in and you are the subject of their fascination?

I’m working on this special/top secret project. It’s a little crazy and well, daring. I’m in Denny’s right now, just going at it on my laptop and I notice that EVERY single person who walks by me cranes their neck to look over my shoulder and see what I’m doing. It’s starting to drive me absolutely crazy. These people are gawking and getting awkwardly close to me to see if I’m doing something “interesting”. They are dangerously close to bumping my shoulder and/or walking into my table. What’s funny is that I know when they see what I’m working on they are thinking “wow, that girl is weird, bold and …how old is she?”

I realize that makes it sound like I’m doing something sketchy; I assure you, I am not.

Anyways, how do you go about dealing with these Restaurant Rubber Neckers? Do you start setting up menus around your screen to block them out? Do you use the reverse of the always acceptable”golden rule” and stare each person down that walks by, thus treating them as they are treating you? What is proper etiquette for this situation? Am I the only person who deals with this? Right now, I’m just glad that no one has been seated behind me, then I would definitely have to leave (or resort to the tower of menus). Although, I have to wonder if I should say something to the waitress who awkwardly cleaned the table behind me (that no one has sat at). I don’t know what’s so fascinating about a young girl typing on her laptop, but apparently it intrigues people. If I were anyone but me, I would probably use this as an opportunity to change my status of being single. As a guy walks by and almost runs into my table, I would come up with some crafty and creative pick up line that would no doubt endear him and thus ensure us a life of marital bliss.

Alas, it’s me we’re talking about and I have not reached that point of desperation. I also can’t see myself hitting on a guy who is THAT nosey. Let’s be real, I can’t see myself hitting on anyone, period.

So, here I will sit, working on my project as the center of awkward public gawking and wonder what the proper response to this situation could possibly be.

Meal Time in Our House

People always criticize me for only eating one meal a day. I wish it could say because I was devoted to fasting, losing weight, recycling or some other great feat. The truth of it is, no one in my house can decide what to eat! Here’s how the conversation goes:

me: “i’m hungry.”

a parent: “what do you want?”

me: “i don’t know, what do you want?”

a parent: “tell me when you figure it out.”

me: “ARBY’S?”

parent: “i can’t eat that.”

parent: “Burger King?”

me: “that makes me throw up.”

parent: “well, then i don’t know!”

then I end up walking off and it takes officially 2.5 hours before we compromise and go somewhere that no one really wanted in the first place. I hate meal time around here. It’s totally not all their fault, it is partially mine, because in our small town there is nothing to eat so, I never know what to tell them.

My point is this, my prayer is that some day I will marry a man who can snap his fingers and say “we should eat this” and that I will agree and it will be settled.

i know that there is about a .000231 chance that will happen, but I can dream.