Monday, April 27, 2009

Feel the Burn

Jamie joined me in a grand/painful adventure today: My very first Spinning class! Ok, I know what you're thinking. Let's just take a moment and get it out of our systems... All together now!

You spin me right round, Baby. Right round like a record, Baby. Right round, round, round...

Yessss! Ok, so fabulous '80s YouTube inspiration aside... Y'all! Spinning was HARD. CORE. I'm not sure I could even begin to describe the intensity of the workout we endured, so instead I'll just share the 'reassuring' words our instructor had for me after class (I was one of only two newbies in the room, so I think she probably just wanted to make sure I wasn't about to pass out and/or cry at the end... success!):

"Well, the good news is... I promise your body will never be more uncomfortable than it is at this very moment! NEVER! For the rest of your life!"
-NYSC Spinning Guru

Ummmm, thank you? Question mark?? Regardless of the fact that I can safely say this was one of my Best. Workouts. Ever... I personally think 'good news' would be if she had handed me one of THESE delicious morsels at the end of the class... Grilled Cheesecake. O.M.Goodness! Now that is what I call motivation. ;)

Friday, April 24, 2009

How Many Days Until July 17??

84. Yep. Just 84 short days until the long-awaited July 17th premiere of Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince!! And considering I'll probably nerd out and go to the Midnight Showing Thursday night/Friday morning with Lauren and my other wizard-loving friends, I suppose we could knock it down to 83... Can. Not. WAIT!

So for your Happy Friday! Happy Video! viewing pleasure, I give you the latest and greatest trailer that was released last week. This one steers clear of all of the gloom and doom in the sixth book and instead focuses on the romantic (read as: teenage angsty) storylines in the Best. Series. Ever... Yesssss!

"[This movie is] about sex, potions and rock 'n' roll... It's a wonderfully fun, slightly rebellious, quite naughty stage of teenage life." -Half-Blood Prince director David Yates... o.m.goodness.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

It's Easy Being Green

I guess it would be an atrocious betrayal to my Northwest roots if I failed to recognize all of the glory that is Earth Day - Have y'all hugged a tree yet today?! They're a little harder to come by in the City, but I'm considering heading to Central Park for the occasion...

Ok, just kidding... but in place of trees, I certainly wouldn't mind hugging THIS Environmentalist Love Muffin. Sigh, I love a man who loves the Earth:

Ha! Earth Rocks, indeed! Oooh Paul Rudd... Be still, my Washingtonian heart. :)

Monday, April 20, 2009

True Love

When it comes to true love, I'm not sure that anyone could ever accurately put it into words. Sonnets, romantic comedies, and country music lyrics are great and all, but they can only go so far. I'm talking about really, truly describing what it means; how it feels. But goodness knows that this lack of a concrete definition doesn't stop a girl from trying to find it, which in all honesty, can sometimes be a bit discouraging...

... It's stories like this one, which appeared in the New York Times: Modern Love column last month, that reassure me that this oh-so-elusive 'true love' thing does indeed exist:

In a Charmed Life, a Road Less Traveled

"I listened as [the doctor] described her condition, then asked, 'Can she think?'

'Yes. Her brain is fine.'

And that’s when I knew we could do it, long before I had any idea what 'it' was.

Now, 15 years later, we do know."

True love? Oh, it's definitely out there. And Layng's story is one (of many) that proves it is more powerful than I can even begin to imagine... for now.

(And thanks to Annie for the article! If she's not on your Must Read List, add her asap. You won't be disappointed.)

Friday, April 17, 2009

The Xylopholks

I've been hanging on to these videos all week because, A. I've been in something of a funk and needed time to mourn NYC's loss(es) and, B. I think this whole "Happy Friday! Happy Video!" thing might just become a regular feature here at PTTP (see how I just referred to my blog with an acronym?! OMGoodness. Things are getting serious...)

It's without further ado that I give you, The Xylopholks (Thanks again to Daily Intel for these finds! If for some silly reason you don't already follow NY Mag's DI, start immediately. Seriously, it's fabulous.):

I mean, just the chance of starting my morning by running into these guys almost makes me want to start using public transportation for my commute... Ha, emphasis on the "almost."

Happy Friday, y'all!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Once Upon a Wednesday

Once upon a Wednesday evening long, long ago, a wide-eyed girl who had just moved to the Big City made a phone call. Unbeknownst to her, this conversation was actually a foreshadowing of what would be a defining part of her New York existence...

"Hi Mom! Oh my gosh, yes! Bible study was so great... Amy and Nichole said to say hi. Yeah. Everyone is really friendly and it seems like it'll be a really fun group. And, Mom, there are these three girls - Alyssa, Amy and Kristen. Mom, they're ALL from Texas! Yeah, I know, can you believe it?? Yep, two of them are from Dallas and the other, Kristen? No. Wait, maybe it was Alyssa?? Ohhh I can't remember, I'll have to look them up on Facebook when I get home... But yeah, the other lives in Midland now. Yes! They ALL just graduated in May and moved up here in August too! They're even staying in my neighborhood until they find an apartment. We walked back together and just chatted the whole way! They went to A&M and a couple of them were in sororities too! Yeah, they're all looking for jobs in advertising or something like it. I mean, they're just all so... so genuine! I don't know... I just have this feeling. Mom, I think... I think we could be really good friends..."

Little did I know that all too soon (about a year and eight months to be exact), I would be remembering this conversation with a bittersweet heart. Amy's path led her back to Texas almost a year ago and in the next week or so, Kristen and Alyssa are moving on to brand new adventures in 'God's Country' as well. And while I'm so excited to see what's in store for them next, I just can't shake the urge to lock them up in my apartment and make them stay here with me forever. Childish? Maybe... But these girls, well, words just can't quite describe the impact they've had on my life here in New York so far.

Our early conversations over Tasti D Lite quickly turned into weekend brunches and play dates around town. No Hollywood Heartthrob has gone unrated since we've met and not a single episode of The Bachelor or Gossip Girl escaped without a G-chat recap the next morning. From day trips at the beach to snowy treks around the UWS to picnics in Central Park, we've definitely made our mark on this city.

But the most striking thing that comes to mind when I think about these friendships isn't one of our many exciting adventures - it's actually the overwhelming amount of trust that I have in each of these girls. And not just when it comes to dishing about our latest crushes (though yes, they've heard it all), but with the stuff that truly matters... Faith. Fears. Dreams. Missteps. I know that when I turn to these ladies with even my deepest concerns, I'll be greeted with open minds, hugging arms, and prayerful hearts. Friends like that are nothing short of inspiring.

They say New York changes people... but me? I'm realizing more and more that it isn't just the City that does the changing. It's who you meet here that can really shape your life. God blessed me beyond my understanding that first Wednesday night when He brought us all together - what a beautifully orchestrated plan! Alyssa and Kristen have helped me to grow in ways I never expected over the past couple years and I have no doubt that they'll continue to do so for years to come, no matter how many time zones are between us.

Love you both SO much! I'll see you very, very soon :) xoxo

"15For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 16I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. 17I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. 18I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 19and his incomparably great power for us who believe." -Ephesians 1:15-19

Sunday, April 12, 2009

He Has Risen!

"3Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, 4and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade—kept in heaven for you, 5who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time. 6In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7These have come so that your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, 9for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls." - 1 Peter 1:3-9

Headed to Central Park to celebrate the Glory of today with dear friends - I'm not sure my heart could be any more full of joy. :) Wishing you all a very blessed Easter!

Friday, April 10, 2009

The Lost Tribes of New York City

I came across this video on Daily Intel and it just makes me happy all over. As Jessica describes, it's like a "New York City–meets–Sesame Street short documentary." NYC and Sesame Street and personifying inanimate objects?? You had me at Hello.

Happy Friday y'all!

"We have to learn to stick together, to love one another. Whether you're white, blue, red, black, green, or whatever." -The Lost Tribes of New York City

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Hold the Cereal, Darling

If there was ever a conversation to sum up Jer's and my friendship, this just might be it:

Jeramey: i love cereal because you don't have to wait to eat it.
Me: except for when you don't have milk. then it's a sad, sad day.
Jeramey: yeah. then you have to use water
Jeramey: or beer.
Me: what are you? a frat boy?
Me: champagne, darling. clearly, champagne.
Jeramey: oh who are we kidding? hold the cereal.

Ok, ok... To have truly defined our friendship, I suppose it should also have involved discussion of brunch, Ab Fab, fake engagements and cute celebs... But still. This was pretty darn close.

Monday, April 6, 2009

By Faith.

I was reminded of the below passage recently and I haven't been able to get it out of my head (in a good way, clearly. Not like that time I was absentmindedly humming One Republic's "Apologize" for a week straight... Ugh.).

Reflecting on the stories of so many before me who remained faithful in even the most unlikely and frightening of circumstances has been just what I needed to hear for the past few weeks... And each of them received their reward, a heavenly reward, that was so much greater than they could have ever imagined.

Life can certainly throw some nasty curve balls every now and then, and sometimes it seems like too much. But He continues to encourage me, and so I will continue to persevere... by faith.

(italics and bold mine)

Hebrews 11

1Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see. 2This is what the ancients were commended for.

3By faith we understand that the universe was formed at God's command, so that what is seen was not made out of what was visible.

4By faith Abel offered God a better sacrifice than Cain did. By faith he was commended as a righteous man, when God spoke well of his offerings. And by faith he still speaks, even though he is dead.

5By faith Enoch was taken from this life, so that he did not experience death; he could not be found, because God had taken him away. For before he was taken, he was commended as one who pleased God. 6And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.

7By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

8By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even though he did not know where he was going. 9By faith he made his home in the promised land like a stranger in a foreign country; he lived in tents, as did Isaac and Jacob, who were heirs with him of the same promise. 10For he was looking forward to the city with foundations, whose architect and builder is God.

11By faith Abraham, even though he was past age—and Sarah herself was barren—was enabled to become a father because he considered him faithful who had made the promise. 12And so from this one man, and he as good as dead, came descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and as countless as the sand on the seashore.

13All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted that they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had opportunity to return. 16Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared a city for them.

17By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice. He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, 18even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned." 19Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death.

20By faith Isaac blessed Jacob and Esau in regard to their future.

21By faith Jacob, when he was dying, blessed each of Joseph's sons, and worshiped as he leaned on the top of his staff.

22By faith Joseph, when his end was near, spoke about the exodus of the Israelites from Egypt and gave instructions about his bones.

23By faith Moses' parents hid him for three months after he was born, because they saw he was no ordinary child, and they were not afraid of the king's edict.

24By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh's daughter. 25He chose to be mistreated along with the people of God rather than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a short time. 26He regarded disgrace for the sake of Christ as of greater value than the treasures of Egypt, because he was looking ahead to his reward. 27By faith he left Egypt, not fearing the king's anger; he persevered because he saw him who is invisible. 28By faith he kept the Passover and the sprinkling of blood, so that the destroyer of the firstborn would not touch the firstborn of Israel.

29By faith the people passed through the Red Sea as on dry land; but when the Egyptians tried to do so, they were drowned.

30By faith the walls of Jericho fell, after the people had marched around them for seven days.

31By faith the prostitute Rahab, because she welcomed the spies, was not killed with those who were disobedient...

39These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. 40God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

Hebrews 12

1Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. 2Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. 3Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.