Monday, June 29, 2015

The Final Countdown--Junior Year Addition

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After Spring Break, mom always makes a countdown calendar to mark off the days left until we are out for summer.  This year, I don't know who was ready for summer more, mom or me.  I've always heard that junior year is the worst, but at first I didn't believe it.  Then second semester came.  Changed my mind.  It was true for me, too.
 
Looking back, yeah it was really rough, but there's always diamonds in the rough.  If not diamonds, maybe a shiny rock or two.
You gotta take the best of what life gives you.
It's always good when a day starts with poop, right?
 
These are some great pictures that I found from a race we ran at Dobyns-Bennett!  The first couple days after a race, I always look forward to going online and looking at all the pictures people have posted.
On my way to a 3200 victory...with an untied shoe.
Chantal, Cherie, and I have come together to create some epic pictures this year in xc and track.
Chemistry got tough at times, but my teacher was what kept me going!  I was so thankful to have Mrs. Heflin to keep us entertained while teaching us what we needed to know, too.  This lab wasn't really that educational, but the rest of them were.  We roasted smores on bunson burners, so that's still a chemical reaction!
 

Timehop makes me happy.
So does my doggie.
This is kinda my usual pumpkin oatmeal stuff, but no pumpkin.  I woke up to find that the pumpkin was moldy. But it was race day, so I had to improvise!  Carrots were close enough.  Not bad either.

Selfie with a fish on shopping trip after a track meet.
Yes, I asked a stranger in the bathroom at Bass Pro Shops if I could take a picture of her shirt.
 
 
It makes me happy to see people I know (and people that I don't know) out running while I'm driving around town.  Here's Michael on the left and Mrs. Bowen on the right.  These were a few days apart, but at the same place!
Have no fear; I was stopped at a red light.
Track buses are too much.
Friday night lights
Late night 3200 at Dobyns-Bennet was worth it.  It was past my bedtime before we even started, but under those lights, running feels like flying.
Getting to do things like this may be stressful, take my sleep, make me sore, and so much more, but moments like this, looking out at an almost empty track because it is so late make me think about how much of a blessing it is to get to do this thing that so few people get to do.  For most, running (especially fast) is a "have to."  For me, it's a "want to" and a "get to."
Between D-B and Morristown, especially at 11:30 at night, there is not much to pick from.  Sonic came to the rescue being open until 2am, so we grabbed sandwiches and me a blast on the way home.  It was late, but I also had an early morning ahead...see below...
After getting in bed after 1:00am, I had to wake up extra early to go to school to take the ACT.  It made it not so bad, though, since I got to see one of my friends from church in my testing room!
Some fancy flapjacks
caramel banana
Sub-deb meeting:  to dress up or nah?
When meetings are in the middle of Sunday afternoons, the few people who come come wearing whatever is convienient.
Excuse my selfie, but I was excited about my hair and stuff.
Munk Packs are an awesome, tasty, healthy, portable snack that I found on The Feed and have tried a couple flavors!  It's like fruit and oatmeal in a squeeze pack.  It may sound weird, but it is delicious!  One of their main things they focus on these products is that they can be taken on any adventure the day may lead you to!
With Chemistry and AP tests studying overload, I was sick of it.  My toenails also hadn't been painted since Christmas, so since it had gotten to be flip flop wearing time, my toenails kinda ruined it.  Mom came to the rescue one night and painted them for me!
Just like the good ole days when I was a little tot.  Only now, my feet are the definition of runner's feet.
Being on the yearbook staff saved my life sometimes this year.  It was a fun addition to each day because I love pictures, and it also gave me time to do other things at the beginning of the year and after the book was submitted.  One day I had a doctor's appointment right after school, so I got to go out to the track and do it during 4th block!  The speed workout actually went by pretty fast out there by myself.  Accept for the construction crew building the freshman academy.  Shoutout to them for letting me use their porta potty. 
20x200.  I had to wear two watches to have a rolling time to know every 2 minutes and the other for a stop and start on the 200 each I ran.
An even bigger blessing came from this opportunity.  The longer I was out there, the windier it got and the darker the sky looked.  On the last few reps, sprinkles began to fall.  By the time I finished my cool down, it had turned into a drizzle.  The team was just coming out to stretch.  Leaving the school parking lot, it started pouring.  Down the road, lightning and thunder.  A few minutes later, sunshine and hail, big hail!  And yes, sunshine and hail are in the same sentence because they occured at the same time.  This crazy weather pattern continued for about an hour.  The team ended up not even getting to do any of the workout!  Not only was I thankful to have gotten the whole thing done--in dry weather--I got done early, too!
One of my friend/teammates Emily took this picture as the sun was setting at one of our home track meets.  Pink skies are just another peaceful picture from the Lord.
 
Hey look, it's another Lord!
One Sunday, Jessica and I did a run from my house to Ingles, just about 3 miles, to give us a chance to recover our legs a bit and our minds.  We had a fun time just talking while we ran!  I'm thankful to have fun friends who are there to just hear me out and I can listen to them, too!  Her sister Emily met us there, and we got some fruit off the salad bar and drinks from Starbucks!
Being common white girls.
Whenever I post something cliche, it's usually mocking it.
I wanted to do a little something to put a bright spot in some other people's day (hopefully), so we decorated some sticky notes with Bible verses and such and stuck them around places in the store!  We also shared stuff and prayed with each other.
Jessica wrote this one, and it was perfect!  There were 3 of us!
The social club I am in, Sub Debs, has a hell week for the pledges (freshmen) each year.  Now as an upperclassman, I look forward to it because one of the parts of hell week is gifts!  Every day, each pledge has a couple upperclassmen girls to call and ask them for something they want.  I got free snacks or a drink every day!  This is Emily in her outfit for the week and the cookies and drink she got me.  She was a real trooper!
The past two years, the cross country team has been invited to the Citizen Tribune Hall of Fame banquet where we get to eat some delicious food, socialize, dress up, and get recognized.  This year, there was a different part of the night that made it so great.  The guest speaker was Nick Reviez who played football at UT and professionally.  His testimony was amazing.  I can't explain how much it related to my life.  God knew that I really needed to hear that from someone else other than just His Word.

During the earlier parts of his football life, he had a thought that filled his mind quite often, "What if I fail?"  He put a lot of pressure on himself.  I did and thought the exact same things.
There were all these things he worried about--college, scholarships, etc--just as I was stressed over, too.  But he said, "I need to stop worrying about all these things that I wasn't created to worry about.  I was made to be faithful with today, to trust Him."  It was like he was telling me to stop worrying about all my worries!  I was given my gifts as a runner to bring Him glory, not to stress over.  I don't need to fear failing or losing running; it's just a race.  When I make it more than that to bring myself glory, God disciples me to get my focus back.
Another thing he hit on was control.  He said, "I've got no control at the end of the day.  God's in control of everything."  I like to make things happen my way, but that's not a good mindset to have.  It's always God's way.
Finally, he ended with how using what we've been given to bring God glory brings us pure joyJoy joy joy!  I feel like we were the same person, just two different ages, sports, and genders.  I just hope to be able to share how God has worked in my heart like Nick did.
I was so excited down in my heart that I had to go talk to him and take a picture with him afterwards.
A couple verses he referenced:  Isaiah 40:6-8 and Matthew 6:33
I'm sure you can find all kinds of information on him if you just pop his name in that Google search box, but here is a video of his testimony.
Another pancake:  dark chocolate
The pastel M&Ms were a nice change up to see
 This comic is true in a couple different ways.  Many kids see school as a prison, myself included at times.  The location of my school makes it basically like prison, too, because we are smack-dab in the middle of the projects.  It is a sketchy area.  Morristown West keeps us on our toes.
 
 
So there's what I had saved from spring break to May!
Basically lots of footsteps, faith, food, and school with a little bit of friends and fun in there, too!