Thursday, April 28, 2011

51 Candles

Happy 51st Birthday, Dear Mom!!!

Today is my Mommy's Birthday!! Lord Jesus, thank You oh so much for choosing Alisa Wright to be my Mother! I am so grateful and blessed to have such an incredible woman bring me into this world and raise me and love me and teach me lessons that only she could teach me by Your sweet, tender loving grace! She points me to You, Jesus!! 

I love you, Mama, and so much about you!!! 

1.) I love YOU
2.) I love your smile
3.) I love your laugh
4.) I love your positivity
5.) I love your teachable spirit
6.) I love your generosity
7.) I love how hospitable you are
8.) I love your transparency 
9.) I love your kindness
10.) I love selflessness
11.) I love your humility
12.) I love your simplicity
13.) I love your trusting spirit
14.) I love your faith
15.) I love your excitement
16.) I love your passion
17.) I love your silliness
18.) I love your contentment
19.) I love your diligence
20.) I love your joy
21.) I love your desire to grow
22.) I love your attitude
23.) I love your compassion
24.) I love your boldness
25.) I love your quick decision making ability
26.) I love your cooking
27.) I love your wisdom
28.) I love how special you make me and others feel
29.) I love your thoughtfulness
30.) I love your sportiness
31.) I love how quickly you accomplish tasks
33.) I love your cleanliness
34.) I love your nurturing (yet not babying) heart 
35.) I love your ability to listen
36.) I love your gentleness
37.) I love and admire your patience
38.) I love how you parent
39.) I love your zest for life
40.) I love your love for Dad
41.) I love your love and passion for Jesus and to know Him
42.) I love chatting with you
43.) I love traveling with you
44.) I love your outlook and perspective on life
45.) I love your freedom in Christ
46.) I love how you don't dwell in bitterness
47.) I love your perspective on aging and growing older
48.) I love how you love people, family, friends, strangers, all
49.) I love your Security, Identity, Confidence in Jesus
50.) I love your singing voice  and your dance moves :)
51.) I love YOU and the Life of Christ that is SO evident in your daily, moment-to-moment walk in Him. Jesus shines ever so brightly and powerfully in and through you, Mama! I love how He is your Joy and Peace and Love and Hope and Rest and your All. He's your Enough!!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to my Mom and Friend whom I love and adore so very much!!!!! 

P.S. There is so much more I love about you, just want you to know :)


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The New Smokin' Fad!

I'm gonna cut right to the chase, God. Been doing some thinking lately, and I've been thinking I should take up a new hobby.....specifically smoking! What d'ya think?!?!

I know I know. It's bad for me. It stinks. It's addictive. Can put a croakin' toad in my throat. And cause cancer.


Practically everyone in NYC does it. It's more of a social thing than anything. A majority of people in the restaurant industry smoke. Not to lose weight (I don't think) and not because they'll die if they don't (I don't think, again). Rather, their reasons for poppin a siggy (aka cigarette) are this: a good excuse to take a break from work and get some fresh air (haha! well...outside air, I should say :). Really! Isn't that kinda funny if you think about it?? Hi, my names Ali, and I just started smoking camels because i wanna see 7 minutes of sunshine with my homies....

Oh, paleez! Give me a break!! 

Well, actually, I'm a social butterfly, and I kinda want an excuse to take a breather and mingle with random strangers who all have smoking in common. Hmmm....Should I or shouldn't I take up smoking?? Oh, or perhaps I can become addicted to fat Cuban cigars. Nah, hate the smell. Or, what about pipes?? Gotta love a vanilla scented pipe-a-roo!! 

What it boils down to is this: I want an excuse to take a break that employers won't give me crap about. But, not super crazy about the stickin' a smokey thing in my mouth. Wait! I have an idea! How about I use my small, weak bladder issue as an excuse?!! Genius! I should start drinking even more water than I do! My poor bladder is like that of an 80yr-old's!! Actually, that's more anti-social than anything...unless I were a guy. Or, I could buy myself an inhaler and pretend I have asthma. Hey boss, gotta go take a puff with my fellow employees as they surround me with their cigarettes! Um...not thinkin' that'll fly so well, especially if those with breathing problems are advised to keep their distance from smokers. Oh, I could acquire a bad case of temperamental Spanish turrets. Havin' a no bueno chinga episode!! Need fresh air!! Now not so sure...especially with a majority of fellow employees being Hispanic. (Sigh)...What to do what to do??? 

I guess I'm left with no other creative excuse than to smoke....But, don't worry any of you anti-smokers you!! I'll be sure and whip out my bubble siggies from now on...the ones that taste like bubble gum :)

Happy 4/20 (aka my birthday, not the national smoke pot day part)!!! :)


P.S. The photo up top is from my college days....or day rather. A friend of mine and I bought her a vanilla flavored baby cigar the day she turned 18. We went through an entire box of matches...had absolutely NO idea how to light the thing. I advised her to take a puff, find out if the thing just so happened to light. What d'ya know! It had! She inhaled the smoke (into her lungs) and coughed up a storm. . . Now, those are the memories!! Hahaha!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

No Laughing Matter

God, remember that time when we were in church, sitting as a family, all cute and composed??? And, then, I decided (ever so wisely) to draw a big ol' smiley face (one of my obsessions in life) on my brother's hand. . . .

Bad idea.

Gregory, being the silly one that he is, began doing a little dance with his hand - the one with the drawing on it. For some odd reason,  I thought it was absolutely hilarious, and then I was hit incredibly forcefully with a terrible case of the giggles. Not sure why, but I could not help but laugh. At this point, the pastor was doing his thing from the pulpit, and (thank You God that we were sitting in the back) my body was shaking uncontrollably with laughter. I couldn't hold it in much longer. I was about to burst! 

I stood up and practically ran out the back door of the sanctuary! Free at last. The giggles came and I just let 'em rip. Whoo! Close one!

I'm joyfully reminded of another bellyaching, funny incident. One night, Mama made delicious homemade mango margaritas. I tried it - delicious. She tried it...Now, I don't know what happened exactly, but the second she tried it, she had some reflex and spewed the drink all over my face. Ohmygoodness!!! We were crying from laughing so hard!!! HILarious!!

Oh, and I can't forget that time at Bodenseehof, when my friend and I were sitting in the back of class. She (so wisely, I might add) was leaning back in her chair during one of the lectures. And, what d'ya know?! Her chair slipped from under her and she went down....Her head was on the ground, and her feet were dangling in the air. Not quite sure whether to stand there in patient shock....Or, laugh uncontrollable, hysterically....I chose the latter. Good thing my friend had a wonderful sense of humor. We could NOT stop laughing. Even 10 minutes later, I had to dash out of the classroom because of the giggles. I was in the bathroom, still just laughin' like a silly drunk (hope it's okay that I said that....couldn't think of another comparison...).

Lastly (for now:), I have to take a trip down memory lane of the time my family and I were all in the car together driving home from dinner. Can't remember how it all started, but I do remember the point where I (and my family) have never laughed so hard in our lives!!! Mama joined in on the noise-makin' fun and tried making 'farting' (man, I'm inappropriate today!!) noises on her arm. And, I followed. Quite humorous, I might say. Whoo! We all got a killer ab workout.

So, why am I bringing all these laughing incidences up??? Well, just the other day, I had a moment of ponderation. Thinking to myself, When was the last time I had a belly-achin' laugh - the kind of laugh that is uncontrollable and brings tears to my eyes??? I just couldn't remember (Oh, wait! I did laugh in the elevator when Juls and J-Diz were in town....a reason I'm not going to share right now). Now, what's up with that, Lord??? I LOVE laughing!! It's like one of my hobbies! One of my 'favorites' if I had to write it down. Why is it that I (feel, as though) haven't had a really good laugh in awhile?? Is it the city?? Living on my own?? Having too much on my plate?? Being an 'adult,' living in the 'real' world?? Or, could it be that I don't feel comfortable or completely free to be myself?? Ahh! I don't like this!! I don't want to become a hard, cold, non-laughing pale girl with little sense of humor!!! Help!! Come quick and inject me with all the laughing serum You have!! Laugh, smile, giggle through me today, Lord God!! I miss not having to do ab workouts and wearing my 'laugh wrinkle' (joke) cream at night!! 

I ask and pray for at least a couple genuine bellyachin' laughs this week! For, this ain't no laughin' matter!!! Sweet Jesus - Creator of all smiles and laughter itself :) 

i love YOU!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Just A Little Huggin' and Lovin' xoxo

Good Morning, God! Happy Wednesday! I know I have quite a bit of random stories and thoughts to tell You, but that's exactly the point, to share with You anything that's on my heart or mind that I'd like to express via writing :)

So, a few nights ago I attended my first Seder dinner at my church, TGC. SO great! Well, the topic of 'kids' came up and how adorable they are and all. And, how if you're having a tough day or whatever, a little girl or boy's smile can kinda make you forget everything. Just melts your heart :)

I was trying to think of an encounter I had with a cute child, and I was reminded of the day I moved (about a week and a half ago). When I was walking through the lobby of my old apartment building, this absolutely precious boy (probably around 1 and 1/2 years-old or so) comes waddling toward me, giant, contagious grin on his face, and arms open wide. I bend down, and enthusiastically accept his loving embrace!

Ohmygoodness!! My heart was absolutely full at that moment. I just couldn't get over the fact that this innocence baby practically "ran" towards a complete stranger (and with a huge smile, I might add) to give a big ol' generous hug!! 

That one hug (or little boy, rather!) taught me a few things, that's for sure!
A couple thoughts I'd like to share regarding this rare occasion: 

One. I absolutely LOVE hugs! How did he know?!?! :)

Two. Why is it that people seemingly grow less vulnerable as they age, totally unlike my little hugger?? I've noticed (even more so now, after moving to the city) that a majority of humans are generally closed off, not even willing to give a passer by eye contact, let alone a physical embrace!!

Three. I want to be like that precious, innocent, vulnerable, loving baby boy!! I want to be more open, more giving, more accepting, more willing to view others with Your loving eyes, Lord! This world is a rather cold, dark place, especially here in NYC. Yet, Your Love and Light (and hugs :) are bigger and brighter. Yes, with transparency and vulnerability - a wide open heart (this includes giving and receiving) - come risk and the potential to experience failure, hurt, and rejection. Perhaps that is why so many people harden their hearts towards any sort of emotion at all. Yes, I know what it's like to feel pain, hurt. Yet, I also know what it's like to feel nothing at all....I would prefer the former, which is to experience love with a risk of losing than to never love again. And, with that comes the potential to bless others, just like that little guy blessed me :)

And, Lord, this is where YOU come in (well, You're always here, but You know what I mean!).

Jesus, I invite You to love through me today (for I am incapable - my flesh is full of non-genuineness and selfish other words, I need YOU!!). My mouth is Yours' to smile through. My arms are Yours' to hug through. My heart is Yours' to love through. Now, let's have fun melting the cold hearts of NYC, one smile and one hug at a time :)


P.S. I love You! 

Monday, April 11, 2011

What Comes After Winter and Before Summer???

Music to my ears! Beauty to my eyes! Life to my spirit! What do melodious birds, budding flowers, and sunshine all have in common???


Finally, Lord! Spring is finally here! On my walk to class this morning, I heard singing birds and saw the budding trees along the street. I couldn't stop smiling! I LOVE Spring and April and flowers and birds! Spring represents such newness of life to me (physically and spiritually). A new, fresh season is in store :)

K, maybe writing about the wonderful weather changes is cliche and whatnot, or corny, or over-expressed, but whatever! I'm still doin' it!! 
So, in honor of this glorious, beautiful new season that You've created, I found this adorable poem and wanted to share it with You. It pretty much captures my excitement and perspective of your creativity :D

By: Bethany Roberts

"Oh, there's music in the forests
And there's music in the glen,
As the birds are warbling greetings
To the spring that's come again.

All their piping is so merry
That the woodlands seem to ring,
With the praises of the birdsongs
For the coming of the spring.

Join the joyous woodland chorus
And raise high your voice in cheer,
Join the birdsongs in thanksgiving
For the springtime of the year!"

Horray!! :-)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

The buildings are shorter
And, the tourists are fewer
(Thank goodness!)

I think I like it here...

The lights aren't as bright
And, trucks ain't a honkin

I think I like it here...

Lots of quaint li'l shops
And, restaurants galore
(Yum in my tum!)

I think I like it here...

A cute, homey apartment
With a sweet cozy room
(Love it!) 

I think I like it here...

Closer to work and to school
Pleasant place to explore

I think I like it here...

Two new dear, lovely roomies
Who love Jesus and life
(Praise the Lord!) 

I think I like it here...

A new home in this city
For a fresh season of life
(God is so good!)

I know I love it here!!

Thank You Lord Jesus for Your constant Love and Provision and Hand in EVERY area and detail of my life and the lives of all Your dear, precious children. I ask Your continual, abundant Blessing (aka His Presence and Life) over my new room, apartment, roommates, neighbor, and city!!