run girl, RUN

August 13, 2013, will end my first year of working full-time.  Sure, I held summer jobs waitressing, working at a jewelry store, driving the bev. cart at a swanky golf course, etc.  But this date marks a first.

Because my job is mainly sedentary–minus running in and out of court, depositions, and meetings–I have found one thing doesn’t come naturally anymore, EXERCISING.  This is a problem.

With most things, I have a difficult time starting small.  One of my friends ran the Dexter-Ann Arbor half marathon this past spring.  This caused me to think that running a half marathon would be a great way to “make” myself run on a regular basis.  So I am bound and determined to run the Detroit half marathon, 13.1 miles.  Yup.

Of course this decision resulted in new running clothes, new running shoes, and finding a training plan (


(I went with New Balance shoes.  Hoping for a lot of support for my knees)

Today these shoes are hitting the ground for 4 miles.  WHOOT!  This endeavor is not going to be about how fast I run–genetically I was created semi-tortoise, it’s just about DOING it–Nike was on to something.

Because this is a first for me, I would love to hear any advice on do’s and don’ts, training plans, shoes, you name it!!  But please keep in mind that my goal is simple: FINISHING the race.

Lastly, I couldn’t write this post without a shout-out to a good friend for bringing us back some Lemonjello’s (LJ’s) coffee (that I am enjoying as I write this post):


For those of you who aren’t Hope friends or Hollanders, Lemonjello’s is a local coffee shop in Holland, MI, on the sweet corner of 9th and College (  It is a place that holds many memories of past games of “one-up” and conversations about future dreams.


SUMMERTIME fun + cabinets + mustard

It’s JULY.  Not only July, but almost the 4th of July.  WOW!

We had a jam-packed June, in a good way.  Father’s day, Grandparents’ 60th Wedding Anniversary + party, Lindsay and Logan getting hitched, meeting Eli–the Nelson family’s beautiful child, spending quality time in Holland, Matt finishing his INTERN year of residency, plus a few house projects, and I’m ready for a LONG weekend!

Here are a few photos re what we’ve been up to:

First the Grandparents’ 60th Wedding Anniversary… I’ve written about my Gramsiebaby before (click HERE and scroll down to the end of the post to meet her).  It was such a blessing watching them celebrate 60 years of loving each other, serving each other, and living a life based on God’s promises.

I look at the milestones and adventure they have had raising five children, finding their way in the bush of Africa, caring for orphans in Albania, floating in the Dead Sea, battles with cancer and health, and doing this all, together. I can’t help but think–they did it.  They have truly lived.

When I was a child, I was scared of everything.  I mean EVERYTHING.  My Grandma was scared of nothing, except getting on escalators, I’m not sure why.  She challenged me to experience life and I’m beginning to understand why:

(the lovely couple ON their anniversary)

(Alpen Rose cake–the best)

(my sister and I at my Grandparents’ shindig)

(enjoying Boatwerks on a Saturday night)
(meeting Elias Nelson for the first time)
(harvesting a few beans from our garden)
AND celebrating Matt finishing his first year by, wait for it, a new WEBER grill and accessories:

The man has always wanted a nice grill… so for the 52 weeks of 70-80 hours each week, we splurged!!  delicious.  I also have to add how proud of him I am.  It has been an awesome year watching him actually become a doctor.  
Finally–the SMALL house update.  The cabinets are FINISHED!!!  Here they are:

They are gorgeous.  The finish turned out so much smoother than when we used the rust-oleum kit…  Now I can’t wait to put in the new countertops and backsplash–maybe a roman shade, too??
And… the craft.  I last blogged about lightening up our living room.  Here is what I came up with:
(an old window frame)

(a little rust-oleum oil-rubbed bronze action on a white chain)

(close-up of chain)

(mustard paint, an old book, and the chain)

(close-up of the book pages I glued to the piece of plywood)

(the finished product!!)

(hung and brightening)
So that’s it for June… I can’t wait to see what July holds!!