Thursday, April 28, 2011

4/27/11 - Tuscaloosa Tornado

This is so devastating. I lived here for a year and spent much time in this area. Pray for the people who lost lives and homes.


Yesterday, April 27 an F5 tornado ripped through Tuscaloosa, AL. We were prepared for horrible weather in here in Florence and we got so lucky that it missed us. Not completely, places around Florence are destroyed and two of my sorority sisters lost homes. I have been in prayer all day. I have never experienced anything like this. So many of my friends and family were in Tuscaloosa that I was so sick worrying about them. One guy from my hometown area lost his life. My brother told me that if he would have been 100 yards in a different direction that he would have also. I am SO THANKFUL that he is okay. I finally talked to or found out that everyone I knew was okay, and then I dropped my phone in water! So I am phoneless for the time being but its opened my eyes even more to the loss some people are dealing with right now. I can't even fathom. Please, take time to pray for all those affected. I couldn't get any of the pictures to upload but here is a photo taken from where my brother was. His car got messed up pretty badly but he is safe. Things can be replaced, but people can't. I am going to bed tonight even more thankful, grateful, and blessed.

God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
Psalm 46:1

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Spring Formal

Thursday was our spring formal! It was a blast! We had a country cover band, and I LOVED it!! I love country music(they played other stuff). It was right up my alley!
I took one of my friends! He was actually one of the very first people I met when I visited Florence before I moved there! His bow tie had shot gun shells and rifles on it. haha. Loved it!
One of my sorority sisters and friends!
more of my sisters!!!!! Love them!
My bestie, Laura! I loved the color of my dress! And I loved my shoes. Formal was a blast! I am still tired and sore from dancing. haha but so worth it! I can't wait until the next one!

I hope everyone has a wonderful Easter weekend! I am spending it at home with my family, enjoying the mountains and lakes! Paradise :)

Monday, April 18, 2011


It's pretty obvious that I love quotes. I search them all the time. I love to have something to ramble off if someone is having a bad day, needs advice, is happy, just anything! I was going through my favorites I had marked on twitter and thought I would post some!

God is always there for you. He never let you down. And He gives what you need, not what you want.

Being happy takes massive courage

If someone doesn't appreciate and value you, then why are you even with them? Know your worth and what you deserve.

Keep your face to the sunshine, but never miss an opportunity to dance in the rain.

Let the past serve as a point of reference, not a place of permanence.

You’ll suffer in various trials for a short time so that your faith will be proved - 1 Peter 1:6-7

Every little thing is gonna be alright. Sometimes God uses pain to inspect us, correct us, direct us, and perfect us.

God is working things out for you, even when you don't feel it. Have faith and be thankful.

Sometimes we get so wrapped up in getting what we want,we forget to ask ourselves why we wanted it in the first place

One of the secrets of life is to make stepping stones out of stumbling blocks ~ Jack Penn

Be a rainbow in someone else's cloud. ~Maya Angelou

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Just Fishin'

I just heard this song on the radio! I was with two of my friends and we were like yayyy a fishing song. ( I love fishing) As it started, the lyrics went in a different direction than I was expecting. It was so, so sweet. It made me grin because I remember fishing with my daddy, not knowing the memories I was making at the time. One of my favorite things he cooked was fish and hushpuppies. I clearly remember helping him cleaning fish sometimes (or watching). God played this song so I could remember even more memories of my dad today. So special. This will be my new favorite song. Enjoy!! ;)

6 years

Six years ago today my dad went home to be with the good Lord. It was a Sunday, just like today. Sarah Grace pointed out that today is the first time this anniversary has been on a Sunday. It's a sad day, but I am smiling as I am reminded of so many memories he filled my life with. The past few days people have told me some funny stories or just sweet memories and it has made my heart smile. Someone told me about a time they were playing golf and dad got mad and dumbed all his golf clubs in the pond. It makes me crack up because that sounds just like him. He went through some clubs :) It is so beautiful outside today, and I know if he was still with us, this would be a perfect day in his eyes. He would more than likely be working in the yard! I'm going to go enjoy the day outside!! Six years seems like forever, but then it feels like it was just yesterday. I have faith in knowing I will be with him one day. Love y'all.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Junior Year

I just registered for my Fall 2011 classes! I CANNOT believe I will be a Junior in college. Where has time gone?! I have only have one class at 9:30, and all my other classes have been 11:00 or later(lucky, I know!!). Well, in the fall, I have 8 a.m. classes every day. I am not happy about this and actually slightly freaking out. Right now I have 16 hours, which is also the most I have ever taken. But if I want to graduate on time(which since by brother is I feel like I can too) then I have to take that many, and my last 3 semesters I will have to take 16, then some summer classes. To say I'm stressed would be an understatement. I am seriously thinking that there's no way I will be able to do it. But with lots of hard work and prayer I know I will! I have one more basic class to get out of the way and I am taking it this summer online through Northeast. Im going home this summer because it will be my last summer to relax and chill. Next summer I will be taking several classes, and the next summer(hopefully) I will be preparing to start my teaching career!!! AHH!
I still have a huge desire to open my own bakery. However, I have to be practical and I realize that owning a business doesn't always guarantee success. So while I am young I am going to get my degree in Family and Consumer Sciences Education. I can always open a bakery when I'm older but it would be a lot harder to go back to school. It's always safe to have a back up plan! I truly believe I will open my own bakery, and I have all ready started designing how I want it to look! :) With the FACS I can teach cooking, sewing, how to take care of children, family dynamics, and things along those lines. All of those interest me so it's kind of like the best of both worlds!

Since I just finished registering I figured I would post about it. Any tips about this certain major/college/life at this stage?!?

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Oh Happy Day

It's only Tuesday and I feel like it should be Friday. Ahh!! Today I had to go to Muscle Shoals (which is just over the bridge) and I decided to take a trip to Tuscumbia since I was on the other side of the bridge. As most you you know I love to bake and would love to open my own bakery one day. There is a cute little bakery in downtown Tuscumbia called Yummies that I have been wanting to try out. So I went today and it was so cute on the outside, and there was some cute things inside. Lots of pink. There was at least 10 cupcake choices in front of me.... decisions decisions. I choose cookies and cream and reese's. I love oreos and reese's so I figured I couldnt go wrong. The cookies and cream one was delish, and the reeses had a whole reese baked inside, but I felt like the chocolate frosting was out of a can. Overall I wasn't super impressed. But it makes me want to have my own bakery even MORE!! I want to so so bad. Why am I going into Family and Consumer Science Education?!?!? blahh
I went to enjoy the sunshine and cupcake at the riverfront park!
a happy me.

oh happy day.

Monday, April 11, 2011


This is a sad post, so if you don't wanna be sad, don't read it! I'm not posting this to get sympathy from anyone or for anyone to feel sorry for me. It's just a healing thing it helps me to release my feelings. If anything I just want you to say a prayer for me this week if you have some extra time. A prayer for me to have strength and comfort and peace. Part one is a few posts back..

Today has been "one of those" days. I just miss my dad. This is the week leading up to the anniversary of his going home. This week, six years ago, my family was supposed to make a trip to Chicago for spring break with the Moody's( who I consider my family). Our parents sent us on a scavenger hunt for this surprise for Christmas! We were SO excited to go on this trip. However, my dad was very sick at the time and we didn't want to leave him. So my family didn't make the trip. The Moody's went and brought us back sweet gifts. I went to the beach with a group of family friends. It was all girls, and little Thomas. It was a blast. I remember calling my dad at the hospital to tell him about my days and him calling to check on me. I had a voicemail saved for the longest time that he left me that week. His voice was so frail as he said, "Hey Riles, I hope you're having a good time at the beach. I miss you. Make sure to wear that sun screen so you don't get burnt. I'll see you in a few days. I love you!" (I didn't realized it was saved until a month after he passed I was on a school trip at Dauphin Island and that voicemail came through. Talk about a mess...) I saved that voicemail for forever and I think I still remember what he said because I listened to it so much. Just to hear his voice. There finally came a day when my phone wouldn't save it any longer and I am sad about that. I need to hear his voice right now. Anyways I got home from the beach, the Moody's got back from Chicago, dad was able to get out of the hospital, so we all had dinner. I think we had dinner that Saturday, but it could have been Friday. It was completely a God thing bringing us together one last time. Because early that Sunday morning (about 3:00, I want to say the exact time was 3:09 because for the longest time that time was burned into my head.)my mom woke me and my brother up, Jeppa picked us up and drove us to the hospital, where my dad was. I'm not sure what happened but Mom called the ambulance and I remember her telling us that he was able to mutter out "I love you." We weren't at the hospital long, because I remember leaving there around 5:00(maybe 5:23, again that time was burned in my head). We were able to go back and see him one last time. I wouldn't walk to the bed. I stood along the back wall before leaving the room and marching out the front doors of the ER. That was not happening. It couldn't be real. But it was. I went home with my mom and Butler went to eat with my uncle and his best friend. People were at the house by the time we got there as the sun was coming up. I was sitting on the couch in the living room and two people I specifically remember being down there with me were Mrs. Deborah(my 2nd mom) and Mrs. Biven's. I sure others were but there is a lot I do not remember from the following days. I don't want to remember. We did have a ton of out pouring of love and support. My best friend Holley spent the night with me and a few of them sat with me at the funeral. I couldn't stand. There was a ton, I mean TON of people at visitation and the funeral. It was such a blessing to know that so many people loved my father and loved our family and wanted to be there for us. To this day I am beyond thankful for that.

The night before he was rushed to the hospital, when I was saying my prayers, I prayed to God to please let my dad suffer no more. I wanted him healed. It was after dinner with the Moody's and I think it was honestly at that point when I first realized he wasn't going to be with us forever. I had to accept that because up until this I just knew he was going to be healed. Keep in mind I was 14. I prayed for God to not allow him to suffer anymore if he wasn't going to be healed. I hated seeing him so sick. Of course I wanted him to be healed, I STILL want him HERE and healed, but he IS healed. He hurts no more. He suffers no more. And he is with me EVERY day. As I sit here in the common room on my floor with tears soaking my shirt, he IS with me. This week, along with my birthday week are always the hardest (holidays too). I sometime regret going to the beach that spring break and not being with him every day, because I got home and had one day with him, but I've had to let go of that regret. There's no changing it. I have some of the greatest memories of my daddy that I know I'll never ever forget. I can't wait to tell my future husband and children ALL about him!! I have some of THE BEST friends that always know what to say. Shout out to Ashley Ham because when I am so sad, after I go to God, I go to her. She always knows the perfect thing to say when I'm hurting. I love you Ashley and thank you forever. If you're reading this and knew my dad I would love to hear a story you remember about him. So comment it on here or message me or whatever. I love hearing other peoples memories of him! Somehow, through the tears I can still manage to smile, If I did not have Jesus in my heart I couldn't be smiling. He has a plan for this life. I'm really out of words tonight. I'm sure I'll have something else to share later this week. I want you to know that no matter what you're going through, it would always be worse, but it will ALWAYS get better. Trust, believe, have faith, and pray. Thanks for letting me share what was on my heart :)

Psalm 34:18 "The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit."

Saturday, April 9, 2011

The Beginning and End

While I was at the beach, I did a lot of thinking while soaking up the sun. I feel super close to God when I am outside, and even closer at the beach. I just look at all the things he created and an overwhelmed with thankfulness. After I finished reading Heaven is For Real, I was so happy. No one knows when their time to go home is. I know that when mine is, it will be beautiful and I will dance with the angels in eternity! I love being on the beach soaking up the sunshine, seeing the clouds in the blue sky, running my fingers through the grains of sand, and looking out at the ocean not being able to see when it ends.

Even on a overcast, cold day the beach is still beautiful. That's how life is. Even when I have a bad day I find the positive in it because it is still beautiful. I was blessed with another day on earth, and the sun always comes out. This (below) was the sunset at the end of the yucky day. Gorgeous!

Just like that, the waves come and wash everything away, making all new again.

I love this song, Redeemer.

Who taught the sun where to stand in the morning?

and Who told the ocean you can only come this far?

and Who showed the moon where to hide 'til evening?

Whose words alone can catch a falling star?

Well I know my Redeemer lives

Let all creations testify

Let this, life within me cry

I know my Redeemer lives

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Catching Up

So last week was spring break and I told myself I wasn't going to blog all week. I didn't do any school work, either! But I didn't have any anyways. I had 4 tests the week before SB so it was nice not to worry about anything! I was home the first part of the week then went to Gulf Shore with some of my sorority sisters! It was a nice, relaxing get away! I read the book "Heaven is For Real" and it was so good, I finished it in one day. I also started re- reading "So Long Insecurities" by Beth Moore but didn't get very far.

our group at Lulu's
FYI: if you feed one seagull, 500 will come

outside of The Oyster House

The Rodeo in Auburn is this weekend and I am SO bummed that I won't be able to go. It's initiation weekend so that is more important! I can't wait to see pictures of my friends tho.

Have a good week!