Friday, May 28, 2010

Hello Long Weekend.

I don’t know about you but I for one am excited to have a long weekend! I thought a month or so back that this would be the perfect weekend to go somewhere fun. I thought through a million different ideas, with Southwest giftcards burning a hole in my pocket and even my love for a good road trip. But with my recent trip to Indy (2 weeks ago) and 2 trips in June, I decided maybe the best thing to do would be stay put!

I love traveling but living out of suitcase is exhausting and I didn’t buy a home just to be away from it every day and half the nights. You know what I mean? The gypsy lifestyle takes a toll. So, for me this weekend is a weekend to be a home body. I plan to lay by my pool (pictured above) and work on getting disgustingly tan and finishing off a few books.

I’m in the midst of finishing the 3rd Twilight book before the movie comes out. I like the books ok but haven’t been addicted to them so I usually take a couple months off inbetween to read books with at least a pinch more substance before returning to reading another Steph Meyer. I can only handle so much. But I do want to see the movie and I prefer to finish the books before the movie. So, that’s on the list. I’m also working on Rob Bell’s Velvet Elvis, a book called Sweet Ruin, and I’ve got a list of chic lit I’ve been meaning to buy on Kindle and dominate in a day or two. So, this is my big chance.
The girls and I are going to have a pitch in at my place Sunday night just to get some food and fellowship in. Not sure what I'm going to make just yet, but I'll come with something, I always do. Maybe I should feed them anything unhealthy left in my kitchen now that I'm trying to be good?! Ha!

I’ve also been promising myself for a while now that I would finally clean my car inside and out. This weekend may just have to be that time. I SHOULD also organize my garage, which I’ve been meaning to do for 6 months, but I’d recommend against holding your breath on that one.

I head to Pittsburgh, PA next week to work with the Steelers. So next week will be a short week, with the office closed Monday and leaving town Friday morning. Wish me luck staying on top of it all until then. I guess it would be wrong to sport my Colts gear in Steeler Nation, huh? : ]


Thursday, May 27, 2010

Creating Space.

Image taken from here.

We recently did a series at church entitled, ‘Creating Space’. It was a timely sermon series for me as the school year winds down and even though I’m not in school, summer does mean a different schedule for most of us. Leading a group for my church Dave Ramsey course is coming to a close in June and my small group had decided to take the summer off. It was time to consider how to create space in my life for rest, for leadership, for fellowship. It’s important to find balance in your life and know when you reevaluate your commitments (at least once a year , I say) and consider what’s next.

Since the creating space series I’ve been doing some self eval in an attempt to figure out what’s next for me. I feel lead to simplify and streamline. I’ve found 2 new ways (I shared about Dinner Done already) to reduce the amount of time I need to keep up my household (of one) that are freeing up my time that I do get at home to be spent enjoy the pool, reading, sleeping, working out, etc. But what about my commitments?

I think God is calling me into a new leadership role with church that will take me away from my 2 current stations and will bring me into a new role that will involve facilitating here in my area. See, my church is a little over a half an hour from where I live and I’ve had this nagging idea that we need more going on in my area, down south. Also, the provision of my beautiful home that I don’t have to share with a roommate right now, frees me up to open my home to others! What an opportunity!

This is all still in the beginning stages so I don’t want to get ahead of myself with revealing my new game plan just yet. But suffice to say, change is on the horizon for me and I expect it will be good change.

So for those of you who asked I'm not sure if I'll be picking back up book club, when/if I'll return to teach another session of Dave Ramsey, and I do have some new adventures on the horizon (that are coming together beautifully) but I'll wait to reveal those til after a meeting this weekend.

Stay tuned.



Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Facebook, twitter, and stalkers, oh my!

Social networking. The ever increasing phenom of social networking is completely fascinating to me. As a ‘member’ of twitter, facebook, myspace (past tense really), blogger, and – I am all over the place with internet updates. However, I got to thinking after a recent episode of Criminal Minds (I’m obsessed), how much information is too much information?

See, I’ve never been someone who posts my drama on facebook. That’s not how I handle fights with friends. I’ve never put a relationship or anything about who I’m dating up on any of my sites (except to occasionally make fun of a guy, without his name, on my blog). And I don’t add people I don’t know, although I do let anyone who wants follow me on twitter and there are people on my facebook who despite thinking they know me, don’t really. I usually confirm all my friend invites, assuming I've probably met the person somewhere along the way and have just forgotten.

During this Criminal Minds episode, the girls who are targeted by the seriel killer are girls who are obsessive with social networking. He finds them via a facebook type site and proceeds to follow their statuses, learning all about them. He later uses this information to know when they aren’t home and he breaks in and places cameras in their houses (I know, creepy). And later he uses the cameras in conjuction with knowing their routines and schedules to carry out his evil plans.

So I realize this isn’t real. It’s 'just' a TV show. BUT there have been plenty of stories in the news over the past year or so of people who’s statuses have gotten them in trouble. Either people breaking into their houses while they know they’re out of town (because of twitter). Guys on college campuses becoming obsessed with and stalking girls via facebook. You get the idea. So despite this show being fiction, I do wonder if there isn’t something to be said for being careful how much you say, and monitoring who you allow to know your business…is it ironic I’m thinking this ‘aloud’ on my blog? Bare with me.

After reading an article about how to keep yourself safe on the internet, I did take my year of birth off facebook (they say this increases your chances of having your identity stolen). I have started changing my passwords with more frequency to avoid being 'hacked'. And my facebook profile only includes my name, e-mail address, and quotes. But the truth is, a smart enough person could probably do some damage with just that! So, do I go through and delete hundreds of people from my facebook and lock down my twitter to only those I allow to follow? What's the course of action here? I don't want to quit social networking...I love staying connected with people all over and keeping up with their lives.

Food for thought anyway...ideas welcomed.


Monday, May 24, 2010

Dinner's Done.


We 20-somethings know better than most that life is busy and time is money. So when your a single girl (or guy) how do you balance an entire households worth of activities with just one you? If your answer is cloning yourself, trust me, I've already considered it! Unfortunately, I'm not much of a scientist but if you hear of any tips, let me know...I like to think the world could use a second Becca Christensen.

The past 2 months I've been even busier now that I'm doing 'the biggest loser' which requires, planning so I can eat healthy AND workouts. For a girl who already juggles her fair share of balls, adding 2 more wasn't easy. It means less sleep and lately, less reading. But in the name of not eating lean cuisines every day I needed a creative way to eat real (healthy) food. Never fear single (or non-single) ladies, I have found a fun and delish solution.

For my area it's called Dinner Done. You don't have to do the prep work or the clean up. They had me at 'leave your mess'! Two of my coworkers and I hit Dinner Done to make meals, thinking they would be great for event season. We event ladies have crazy weeks before; working overtime, packing, and then jetting off to our destination of the weekend. So it's one less iron in our fires (ok I'm all over the place with taglines tonight). If you're trying to be healthy like me, make sure you study the nutritional value before you pick your menu.

Tonight I cooked Bistro Chicken (in white wine sauce) with rosemary potatoes. It was delicious and my half (Amy and I split 4 meals) will feed me for 3 days. For me, that means lunches for the next two days. We also made white chicken lasagna (which I can't eat on my diet so I'm taking it to a pitch in), pulled pork, and chicken cacciatore. We're going back in June for a private party with a group from our work. Hmm, do I feel a video blogging coming on? If could can sign up 8 reservations they'll let your group have the place to yourself!

Just wanted to share now that I'm completely in love. You all should look up some in your area. Dinner done meals work out to about $3 per serving so they're really reasonably priced. They had drinks and snacks for us while we played in their kitchen together. It was honestly incredibly fun. This is coming from a non-cooker! Think about it.

Oh yeah, you freeze the meals and they have stickers on each meal to remind you how to heat them up when you're ready. Easy, just the way I like household chores.


Sunday, May 23, 2010

The Naked Truth.


This weekend I stood in front of thousands and people and told the truth. The truth about my dark years away from my faith. See the tricky thing about life is we fight so hard for what we want, sometimes we forget to realize we want the wrong things. Life isn't about the perfect party or the perfect party dress. It's not about making the most money or driving the nicest car. It's not even about having the most friends or the best boyfriend/fiance/husband. Life is bigger than me and you.

I didn't always realize this and I got caught in filling the holes in myself with the stuff that was supposed to make me happy. Clothes. Boys. Parties. 'Friends'. Money. Jobs. Grades. You get hate idea. And you know what? I was good at it. I mastered that life. No one could see the holes through my carefully created exterior.

But sooner or later, as we all do - I had to face the reality that it was me and not my life that needed fixing. That's what this weekend was about. Giving credit where it's due to the only person who could save me from myself, my Savior. So in a 1 minutes testimony, in 3 services at church this weekend I finally had the courage to say I was lost but now I'm found. I was selfish and hopeless but I found grace.

I'm not much of a public speaker to say the least. Crowds make me nervous. I sweat something awful when I get stressed. I can never decide what to wear. I talk entirely too fast.

The good news is, today had nothing to do with me.

The fact of the matter is that 2.5 years later I'm not just more joyful than I was when I 'had it all' - but honestly, my life is 100 times better. And even if you took my perfect little starter home and my carefully saved emergency fund, and my big ole walk in closet full of colorful sundresses...if wouldn't matter. Yeah I'd be sad to see them go but now, they wouldn't take me with them. I finally recognize that stuff is just that, stuff. It comes and goes. It can be replaced. It's faith, family, and friends (and I would argue maybe even football) that matter. I only wish I'd known that years ago. But I guess our journey is all part of it...who we are, who we are becoming, and who we one day will be.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Lovin Summer.

Kate Spade Flip Flops - $20 at Marshalls.

Summer comes quick for us Floridians. The days are of high 90s weather are here and my pool already feels a bit like bath water. But for those of us who haven't had the great fortune of living in tropical climate all our lives, summer is exciting. It may be too hot but it's full of sunshine and fun times.

What are your summer plans, friends? I'm excited to have recently booked flights to spend some time on the South Carolina beaches in Myrtle and Isle of Palms later this summer with my family. The rest of my summer will be spent (I hope) traveling for work to Pittsburgh & Cinci, by the pool with friends working on my tan, and continuing to try to get in better shape before my best friends wedding in the Fall. Oh, and I'd like to have a few visitors form the midwest if possible. Get on that you all.

My favorite summers were spent here in Tampa, growing up on the lake. Riding jet skis every day, and hanging out til the wee hours of morning every night. Those were the best days of my life. I miss that house (and those jet skis) more than I can tell you now. Those were GREAT summers. But I'm happy to be spending my first summer in The Condo and I'm loving our pool! Life is good you all, life is good.


Friday, May 21, 2010

In a New York State of Mind.

My coworkers and I have recently become completely obsessed with New York and Company. From their bright, Florida-friendly colors to their comfortable maxi dresses - we are in love! In fact, the salespeople at our store have started to learn who we are and expect us to pop in and check the sale racks on a weekly basis. Now to mention with City cash, 50% off sales, and coupons galore, NY&Co is easy on the budget. With prices as good as Target but better quality and more variety, it's a win-win for frugal fashionistas! New to my wardrobe thanks to this weeks City Cash are...

In black and in grey, I'm loving this streetwear addition. How perfect is this for the airport on my trips (like a wearable blanket, but cuter than a snuggie) or the office. Even dressed down with jeans and flip flops on the weekend. I'm loving this.

I will warn you, this dress in white was terrible but in black? Love. Paired with a fitted Cardy, I will be getting plenty of wear out of this one.

I also recently stocked up on 6 colored tees from NY&Co that are perfect for everyday. Love them. And in skin-tone flattering colors that hopefully will show off my tan, when I acheive one.

Get it girls!

Note: Congrats to Rachel, the winner of the ipod armband and best of luck with your workouts. I'm proud of you!



Monday, May 17, 2010

Colts Trip.

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

Share photos on twitter with Twitpic

*Pics of Dad being interviewed at our event - borrowed from @edeckers twitter.

This weekend was our Colts FKE (Father/Kid's Experience) in Indianapolis, Indiana. For obvious reason this is my favorite event (done twice yearly) because I get to see my family while I'm there and the Colts are my team. But bias aside it was a great event! We packed the Indiana Farm Bureau Football Center with Dads (some Mom's) and kids including a few families I know and love from my old job at Raisor Ford and my bffs who came to volunteer for the evening. It's always neat to get to work with my Dad and Coach Jim and this year the team was even able to steal Dad away from the office for lunch with our All Pro Dad team. That's really what All Pro Dad is all Dad has a busy, intense job but he takes time out to spend time with me and build relationships with my coworkers when I'm there. It's so special to me.

It was our first night event in Indy (6-9) and though it made for a pretty intensely long work day, I loved the evening time slot. After we finished up about 10pm with all our packing I headed to one of my favorite Indy hangouts, the Fox with good friends Candy, Josh, Ashley, Jon, Ashley, and Gabe to catch up while I was in town. Man did it feel good to sit on my rump after 12 hours of running around like a chicken with my head cut off! The night was a great reminder of how fortunate I am to have such great friends here in Tampa and back there in Indiana. Between the Colts and my friends, looks like Indiana will have a piece of my heart long after Dad retires.

Saturday I got to spend the entire day with my family. Mom and I hit the gym in the morning. Then we met up with Ruthie for lunch and a shopping trip to the great Marshall's in Carmel. Ruth had to babysit that night but Dad treated Mom and I to a nice dinner out and then the 3 of us watching 'the Edge of Darkness' with Mel Gibson - whew, was that intense.

Wrapped up the trip/weekend with church as a family and then it was back on a plane home with me.

Thanks for a great weekend Indy - 3 weeks til I head to Pittsburgh!


Thursday, May 13, 2010


Christian literature meets 'Criminal Minds' in a story that begins with the police cheif of a small Colorado town finding 2 mutilated raccoons. Jonah Westfall delves into the mystery knowing this act threatens the peaceful nature of his country town. Torn between a toxic relationship with a childhood friend and his teetering sobriety he learns the danger of doing life alone.

Solid character development and storyline suspense will keep this book in your hands. Heitzmann forges uncharted territory in Christian fiction combining suspense and drama with a clear picture of the inner-workings of relationships and struggle.

To hear more from the author enjoy this audio interview here.

This book was provided for review by WaterBrook Multnomah's Blogging for Books program.



Sunday, May 9, 2010

Happy Mothers Day and Then Some.

Happy Mothers Day to all the current and future Mommies of blogland. Several of my friends recently found out their pregs so mother's day is about to have a whole new vibe in my circle of friends. Since my Mom doesn't read my blog (or understand me putting so much of my personal biz out there for the world) I'm going to move on but I wanted to say Happy Mom Day first.

Sadly, I couldn't spend the day with my Momma but I did get to spend it with my Tampa fam. Nancy, Blaire, and I watched Brynnie dance at a competition down my direction, at Jefferson High School. We also ate a delish lunch at the Nordstrom Cafe. And it was a perfect Sunday. Love getting to spend time with them. Although I will say, being back at dance competition was a blast from the past. All those years of my sisters and I in leotards with too much makeup...ah, good times.

After getting two really sweet compliments from strangers today, I've determined I don't take enough time to tell people when I notice things about them. How often do I think a stranger is pretty, or has a great smile, or I overhear a laugh that brightens my day? But so often I keep moving without taking the time to point it out to them. When 2 people did that for me, I realized the opportunity I have to make other people feel good about themselves. I'm going to do better about that. Hold me to it.

So I was watching old episodes of One Tree Hill (apparently last week while sick and delusional I set my DVR to record a marathon). When I started feeling sick again today, I started watching them (I'm not sure if this improved my health of had the reverse affect). But as I was watching I couldn't help but think about high school.

Do you all ever think about it? Who you were back then? I was wondering to myself what high school Becca and current day Becca would have to say to each other if they were to meet. Most people who knew me in high school would describe me as my current friends would. But the last 10 years (oh my, it's been 10 years since my freshman year of high school) have been good to me in so many ways. I wouldn't go back to high school for a million dollars and I wouldn't trade the journey along the way...

Think about how much we've grown and accomplished since then. I joked today that I feel old and was met with a the surprising response, 'you've practically accomplished all your goals at 24, of course you feel old'. I had to stop and think about that for a moment. Here I am with a job I love, a home that's feeling a lil more like mine every day, friends, family, a great church. I don't really believe in that whole 'I am arrived' moment but I will say that life for me right now, is pretty sweet.

I've learned more about who I am in the last 2 years then in the other 22 combined. And finally, I like who I'm becoming. I'm working towards being a woman I can be proud of. It's been a long journey with some rocky detours but I think I'm on the right path.

Thanks for being here along the way.


Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Radical: Taking Back Your Faith From the American Dream - David Platt

Radical: favoring drastic political, economic, or social reforms.

In David Platt’s new book Radical challenges Christians to see life in a new and challenging way. From a man once titled the youngest mega church pastor, read as David wonders and struggles through how we went from Jesus (our role model) who had 12 disciplines to mega churches of thousands. Are we missing the intended simplicity of disciplineship? I find David’s perspective refreshing, challenging, and founded in biblical principles and truth. I appreciate his heart to follow in the footsteps of his Lord with the right heart and conviction for teaching and leading. Are you ready to start thinking radically and to be challenged in some of your ideals and habits? If so, please take this journey alongside David.

To request a free copy of David Platt’s ‘The Radical Question’ (a smaller text that works on a smaller scale with the same topic) please visit:

This book & ‘The Radical Question’ were both provided for my review by WaterBrook Multanomah.

Also, please visit the official site of the Radical book movement here:


Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Giveaway Time.

It’s time to announce my giveaway! In my pursuit of better health (and winning a competition at work) I’ve been spending quite a bit more time in the gym at my complex. Working out 7 days a week has only been bearable because of music! You can’t count on anything decent being on TV at 6am…so my ipod has been the saving grace of my workouts. I bought an armband for my ipod a year or so ago and I love that I can still adjust it while I workout but I don’t have to hold it OR set it in the cup holder in front of me and snag it with my arm while I run (been there, done that). So, after finding a great deal on one recently, I decided to give one away! Now, I realize there are a bunch of sizes of ipods now-a-days so this may eliminate a few of you (unless you want to re-gift) but I hope that it will make one of you quite happy! The ipod armband for grabs is for the Nano's with the long slim body (see above) and it is red (I could only find a picture of the black version).

The only requirements to be eligible to win are: 1. You must be a follower of this blog 2. You must leave a comment below. Keepin’ it simple. Oh, but please make sure that I have a way to get back in touch with you. If you don't have a blog but you follow me, leave me your e-mail address. Best of luck!



What did you say?

Let me start this post by giving credit where’s it’s due…thank you to all of my followers both official and unofficial for getting my blog to 15,000 views! It is great to know that my writing, however trivial or heartfelt each entry is, is out there and being read. I appreciate you! I do have a new giveaway coming soon, so keep your eyes peeled for that. I hope to post it sometime this week – and I will tell you that it’s something I’ve come to love in my own life, and I’m excited to give one of my readers the chance to have one as well. Oh secrets. : ] This is fun.

If you ask my friends, family, or even people who have met me once – most of them will describe me as outgoing, (too) loud, bubbly, etc. But the truth is, I have never loved to public speak. Give me a captive dinner table audience or a bible study of 10 girls and I can keep the conversation flowing all day and night. Stand me in front of a crowd and suddenly I’m babbling incoherently, pacing, and sweating! I don’t know what it is about going from 15-20 people to 50+ that changes the entire dynamic for me. It feels less like a conversation and more like a performance and I’ve never been good at those.

College speech class was surprisingly one of my favorite classes, despite the fact that giving speeches was completely out of my comfort zone. I had this incredible teacher that was so uplifting and encouraging. I worked for hours on my speeches and I practiced them in front of anyone who would listen trying to learn to slow and just let my thoughts flow. I never mastered that and each of my speech ‘reviews’ read: slow down! I suppose this is where my love for writing comes into play. Even though more people read my blog than I’ve ever given a speech too, I can write to you as though I’m having a conversation with an old friend and express myself without having a mild panic attack.

I recently had a conversation with a sweet, soft-spoken young lady I was encouraging towards a leadership position in our church. She expressed her fear of talking in front of other people being that she’s so quiet natured. What I recognized about her that inspired the conversation however, is that she is one of the unique people who despite a lack of volume, when she speaks people shut up and listen to what she has to say. Good leaders aren’t always grandiose in their delivery or eloquent in their speech. Being heard is about being respected and having something of value and honesty to say.

I’m inspired by such people. I’ve never had trouble being heard, mostly due to vocal cords that pack a punch! My sister once told me that I should never be allowed to hold a microphone as I have one ‘built in’. I recognize that having a quiet voice of wisdom that can quiet a crowd with its sincerity is worth far more than being able to talk over a crowd to be heard. I have learned so much about leadership in the past few years and I hope that those around me are seeing me grow in several aspects as I seek to be a better leader, not by force but by being a servant.



Saturday, May 1, 2010

Love on the Rocks.

You often hear it said, you can't help who you love. But is that true? Maybe you can't help who your attracted too but what I know about love has taught me that you have to chose it. Sometimes over and over, everyday.

In my experience even after you start to love someone, you can chose to stop. It's not always easy and to quote lyrics from a recent favorite radio song of mine, 'when a heart breaks, no it don't break even'. Hurting people you love and hurting yourself in the process of growing out of love isn't an easy path. But if you can chose to stop loving someone over time, then I imagine that means you chose to love them to begin with. Love, like all things, is a choice.

I was considering this as a result of watching Sweet Home Alabama which I tivo'd last week and just had time to watch tonight. I hope (and pray) I'll never have to leave someone at the alter (let alone McDreamy!) even for a cute country boy from my childhood. One likes to think you'll know before 'the big day' whether you're doing the 'right thing' or not. But I do love that movie...

Life is full of choices. When you get the opportunity, make the right one. It's a shame to waste your heart.

'Guard your heart above all else, for it determines the course of your life' - Proverbs 4:23