Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Welcome to this world

Say hello to Miss Tillie Chandler and Miss Georgia Kate, born June 9th, the newest edition to the Nixon clan. Twin girls! I can't believe it. I'm so proud of Hayley, what a great mom, and I'm so excited to watch these little girls grow up!

Miss Georgia

Miss Tillie

Hayley and Georgia

Monday, June 28, 2010

Fishing Trip #2

At the beginning of the summer, I always think that I'm going to go fishing more than I actually end up going. I sometimes forget how busy I actually am. BUT, a few weekends ago a few of us did find time to head out to the lake for a little Sunday afternoon fishing. I was the lucky one to catch the first fish... and usually when that happens, I don't feel the need to fish anymore. As long as I catch one, I'm good. Everyone had great success fishing. I think we caught over 15 fish. For a while it was minute after minute of catching a fish. You'd cast your line, reel it in and there'd be a fish. It was getting pretty funny. Overall, it was a great fishing trip.

Kelli and one of her many catches of the day

Eric was the winner with most catches of the day

Justin got in on the fishing action

Haley with her first catch of the day.. a stick

J. Bieber and Joey: Our fishing cheerleaders since they don't have their licenses yet

Mary fishing like a pro

Friday, June 25, 2010

6 Observations

1) I really love Monster Ballads
2) I was picking my friend Kelli up on a Friday to head out to Saylorville and we definitely saw a kid standing on the street corner holding a red bandana type cloth. Gang association? I sped away quickly!
3) The cutest heels are usually the most uncomfortable
4) If you look at someone through a lens of grace, it'll change your entire perspective.
5) I'm an aggressive gum chewer. I need at least 3 pieces a day.
6) I CAN NOT, for the life of me, sit still for longer than 3 minutes. I've been this way since before birth.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Memorial Day BBQ

I know... Memorial Day seems like ages ago but I'm just now getting my pictures uploaded to my computer so I thought I would post some of the pictures! Ashlyn invited the DTC out to her parents house for a Memorial Day BBQ. SO many people were able to come and the weather turned out to be perfect for the evening. There were some volleyball games, frisbee, catch with the football and baseball, and lots and lots of food. The night ended with a little bonfire. It was a great way to celebrate the holiday with friends.

The guys trying to be 8 and swing on the rope swing

Andy playing with the kiddos

Jeremy, the tree climber, trying to fix the swing

Christy & McCabe

Cara killin it on the volleyball court

Girls enjoying the bbq

Haley found one of the many babies roaming around the bbq

Emily and I

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Outta my comfort zone

Theres a lot of things I've done in my life that I haven't wanted to do but basically had to suck it up and do it…. And this past weekend, well, it was definitely "for the kingdom." A few of us volunteered to help out a sister and clean up the Iowa Cubs baseball stadium following the game. I'm all about manual labor and getting dirty while hanging out with friends, but man, I will never throw my trash on the ground at a ballpark again. We started out by cleaning up all the bottles and paper products walking aisle by aisle. I yelled out a few times "this is WAY out of my comfort zone" as I picked up soggy paper and ketchup covered napkins to throw in the trash. At one point Andy stuck is entire thumb in a cheese cup and had a "cheese finger" and I thought I was going to puke right there. Greg was running the trash compactor and he is a better person than I because the smell of that thing, you couldn't come within 15 feet and not want to gag. Ashlyn even had to pick up a bottle that I'm pretty sure had puke all over it. She's awesome! After we hauled all of the garbage, we got out the leaf blowers to take care of the peanut shells. Again, I will be more conscious of the peanut shells the next time I go to a baseball game and not throw them in the ground. Kelli and I tag teamed to sweep up the stadium as another crew used the blowers to gather all the shells in central locations. The weather was hot and the people with the blowers all had "swamp back" (its what we called it in college when you walked around on campus with your back pack and your shirt was just drenched with sweat) but we eventually got the job done. Even though we were all covered in beer, sweat, ketchup and cheese, we had one of the best afternoons. Getting to serve alongside such awesome friends makes it so worth it. I'm so encouraged by everyone's attitudes and willingness to spend part of their Sunday doing something that nobody would really choose to do. Even though I was terribly out of my comfort zone (come on people, chew spit into a clear bottle should definitely find its way to a garbage can so I don’t have to see it) I learned that having an attitude of willingness and a heart for people can make even the dirtiest jobs the most rewarding.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Happy Fathers Day!!

I love my Dad!! He's the man who taught me how to respect people, be courteous and polite, and to not chew with my mouth open. He taught me to keep my talking volume at a level suitable for humans, that baseball is the greatest sport invented, and that Apple computers are the only computers you should ever own. He's the man who taught me how to swing a softball bat and throw a curve ball, he taught me to never give up and work hard, he taught me how sink the perfect putt and keep swinging even if you miss. He taught me to never settle for a guy who I don't deserve, always be truthful, and love others even when you don't feel like it. He's the man who first taught me about Jesus and what that means in my life. He's my Dad and I love him!

What I Love...

I did this back in 2005 so I figured, why not post the things that I love 5 years later. It's funny reading some of the things I wrote back then and it's also interesting how a lot of them haven't changed. So, here it goes:

What I Love ....
I love that the Lord loves me no matter what I do, that His love is for all and one day everything will be made right. I love that I have friends who I can count on for anything, that are willing to spend an evening talking, sitting, or doing absolutely nothing, and are willing to dress up for any theme party we might have. I love taking pictures and looking back and thinking how awesome this or that was, I love writing stories for no one to read but secretly hoping that one day I will publish something. I love Macintosh computers and anything made by Apple. I love watching Glee and the anticipation of what songs they're going to sing, being completely amazed at the dancers on So You Think You Can Dance, and laughing at anything from The Hills. I love backyard bonfires, smores, and smelling like campfire. I love fishing and camping with friends, celebrity hunting, the sound of typing, and all colors of pink nail polish. I love playing softball with Blue Steel, living at 901, shopping, Chicago Blackhawks hockey, and a pickup game of stickball in my parents backyard. I love getting ice cream for any reason possible, watching the Iowa Hawkeyes, going for long walks in the wee hours of the night, and driving with the windows down. I love the way Kate Altmaier describes things as being legit or so aggressive, listening to oldies with my dad, cheering for the Chicago Cubs, eating chocolate chips straight from the bag, listening to someone play the guitar, Soduku puzzles, and Twitter. I love treking around Europe with T, Cin, and Gour Gour; a clean car, Marc Jacobs Daisy, scarves in the winter, and letting my hair air dry. I love the United States of America, Sunday Funday with Kelli and laughing with her at how awesomely awkward we can be towards everything, fishing with great friends, taking road trips, going to concerts, quoting Andy Sanberg skits, reading anything Rachel Lundeen writes, and Farrells kickboxing with Sara. I love playing cards with my family over the holidays, freestyle walking, visiting the wankster (aka brosef Jon) in Chicago, traveling to places I've never been, and talking with my best little buddy friend Theo. I love floating in the water, a great tennis backhand, watching sunsets, and eating popsicles. I love wearing jeans, a sweatshirt and flip flops, looking at maps, going to bucket night (please bring this back) at the movies, orange m&m's, riding roller coasters, deciphering blind vices with my coworker Christie, getting every puzzle right on Wheel of Fortune, walking through the Farmers Market in the summer, and dancing until I can't dance anymore. I love Christmas music, baking, celebrating birthdays with anyone, playing tennis with my brother Jason, singing as loud as I can when no one is around, and praising the Lord with all that I have. I love driving at dusk when the sky is prettiest, listening to Van Morrison on the radio, heading places I've never been before, and eating Road Trip food while drinking fountain pop. I love oversized sweatshirts, swinging on porch swings, backyard football games, bike rides, live music, and Twilight! I love my church family at the DTC, a new pair of socks, boating and jet skiing on the Cedar Lake, grill outs, reading a great book, watching dolphins, body boarding, clean sheets and fresh laundry. I love knowing someone so well that silence is never awkward, Robert Pattinson, making up dances with Sarah, I love when Celine Dion hits a high note and does a chest pound with a lunge, I love seeing a smile on someone's face and knowing they are truly happy, hugging my mom, and reading my grandparents emails. I love choreographed dancing, the feel of summer sun, pulling pranks and scaring people, cuddling under a blanket on a the couch, the smell of fresh rain and sun dresses. I love flowers in the summer, chatting with Andy Gaumer about how ridiculously awesome the Gospel is, making people laugh, voting, spending time with my second family The Griffiths/Barnes clan, new shoes, The Nixon children, online shopping, and Amazing Grace. I love Toms shoes, handwritten letters from Kelli, reading Lainey's blog, new toothbrushes, sleeping in when its raining outside, Christmas shopping, and painting my nails. I love laughing until I either almost pee or my cheeks hurt, pulling pranks on people, receiving letters from friends, big earrings, slippers, and laying out at the beach. Of all these things, I love that the Lord loves me, that His love is never ending and unfailing and that His love is enough.

Friday, June 18, 2010

6 Observations

1) I'm pretty sure someone pooped on the floor. I won't say where, but I'm pretty sure it happened
2) saw a little girl at the triathalon with pink cowboy rainboots.
3) Its okay to tell God you're upset with Him, you're frustrated, and even cry and yell a bit.
4) Chipotle at Valley West has some of the nicest staff.
5) Humidity and my hair are never a good combination
6) Its Sarah Wilson's wedding day. She's going from one generic last name to another (Johnson).

Monday, June 14, 2010

A Wedding Weekend

Another wedding weekend…. Only this time it was 2 weddings! Thankfully both weddings were in the same city so I was able to attend both. Saturday, May 22nd, Kelli and I were in charge of personally attending to Melissa on her big day. We picked up lunch for everyone and arrived at the church around 1130ish. Melissa was in great spirits and I brought her the newest special edition People magazine: Eclipse version. I figured she needed a little reading material to calm any nerves and Twilight does the trick. :) ha. We started getting ready and it was a pretty relaxed afternoon. Being a personal attendant, you get the privilage of helping the photographer with the wedding pictures (which is really my favorite part). Justin scoped out some great areas for pictures and I chauffered the Bride around while Kelli carried the much importat bridal bouqet and wedding rings. While the rest of the wedding party was taking pictures, we were able to get ready and snap a few pictures ourselves. The wedding was great. I love hearing Dan's messages!

Following the wedding, Ashley and I hightailed it out of the church and headed downtown for my old roommate Jenise's wedding. Thankfully the city of Des Moines isn't that big so we made it down there, found a seat, and watched Jenise walk down the aisle. After Jenise's wedding, we headed back out to West Des Moines for Melissa and Dan's reception. It was a great day, the weather was perfect, and two lovely friends were married!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Our entertainment for the evening

Friday night after a fun time out at Saylorville, a few of us headed back to Ashlyn's house for ice cream and social hour. Before long, a guy comes stumbling down the sidewalk and attempts to crawl up the hill to get to the house next to Ashlyn's. It's very apparent that this guy is completely blitzed out of his mind. He can barely stand up straight and keeps swaying back and forth. He spends about 5 minutes attempting to open the neighbors door, takes a break for a while (while trying to hold himself steady) and then keeps attempting to open the door. Eventually, our friends Greg and Chris walk over to see if he needs any help but this guy is so completely blasted he doesn't even know where he lives. After he shares a few choice words with Greg and Chris, they decide its best to let the cops handle the situation. Greg let the neighbors know what was going on while the guy is now on the lawn crawling around. This guy even decides to just pee on the house. Classy.
Anyways, the cops eventually show up and the guy B-lines it for the next house to which he proceeds to walk through the front door and slam it shut. The cop walks in to chat with the guy and to find out if he actually lives there. At this point, we're pretty sure he was laying on the floor because the cop had to look down the whole time. Eventually more cops show up and they bring the guy outside. He starts yelling at the cops that he lives there. "I live here for the summer! I tried to live in the dorms, I tried to live over there, I live here!" He even goes as far as saying "I wear a size 15 shoe. Go inside and there's size 15 shoes!" "I told you and you and you and you I live here!" He just kept going on and on. After much deliberation, the cops eventually let him go back inside and our comedy is over for the night.
After this night, I've learned a few things:

1) Drunkeness only makes you look stupid
2) Never yell at a cop
3) Ashlyn's "neighbor" wears a size 15 shoe.

Friday, June 11, 2010

6 Observations

1) Monday morning when I got home from kickboxing, there was a deer in my back yard just munching on the bushes. I live in the city!!
2) I saw a guy at work that looked just like the singer Jon McLaughlin. I may have even said "whoa" out loud when I saw him.
3) There was a man standing on the corner of the street one morning dressed like a ninja. No kidding
4) Kate Altmaier did indeed to a headstand while at work, photograph it, and send it to me via email. Legit
5) Adding "Yahtzee" to your vocabulary instantly increases the amount of fun you will have in a day
6) I think scaring people has got to be one of the funniest things ever. I really REALLY want to scare someone by hiding in a closet and jumping out and tackling them.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Psalm 103

So sweet. I've been reading this every morning before I head out the door to work. It's not only a great reminder of what God has done for me but reminds me of what I've been saved from. I'm so unworthy, yet God and His unfailing love sent His son to die for ME. How ridiculous is that?!! God is a BIG God! And the best part is that salvation is for everyone through Jesus Christ. I don't know what you're waiting for but after you read below, I don't know why you wouldn't want to jump on the Jesus train!

Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.
Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me.
He forgives all of my sins and heals all of my diseases.
He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies.
He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle's!
The Lord gives righteousness and justice to all who are treated unfairly.
He revealed his character to Moses and his deeds to the people of Israel.
THe Lord is compassionate and merciful, slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.
He will not constantly accuse us, nor remain angry forever.
He does not punish us for all our sins; he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.
For his unfailing love toward those who fear him is as great as the height of the heavens above the Earth
He has removed our sins as far from us as the east is from the west.
The Lord is like a father to his children, tender and compassionate to those who fear him.
For He knows how weak we are; he remembers we are only dust.
Our days on Earth are like grass; like wildflowers, we bloom and we die.
The wind blows, and we are gone as though we had never been here.
But the love of the Lord remains forever with those who fear Him
His salvation extends to the children's children of those who are faithful to his covenant, of those who obey his commandments!
The Lord has made the heavens his throne; from there he rules over everything
Praise the Lord, you angels, you mighty ones who carry out his plans listening for each of his commands.
Yes, praise the Lord, you armies of angels who serve him and do his will!
Praise the Lord, everything he has created, everything in all his kingdom.

Let all that I am praise the Lord.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Mission to the City Recap

God is good in SO many ways! Mission to the City was one of the most beneficial weeks in my life for so many reasons. It was amazing to see our church body so unified for the sake of advancing the Kingdom. We labored together and I'm confident that this city is changed because of what God did during MTTC. We were blessed with the greatest weather that allowed us to go out into the city and serve many people, people selflessly spent hours upon hours preparing the new church building for the first Saturday night service, and SO many people heard the gospel. Lives were changed and it was really amazing to watch and be a part of. The concert Friday night went perfectly. Steele Croswhite and Phil Wickham were amazing. They boldly shared the gospel which reached so many people as it echoed off the buildings downtown. Saturday night, in our new building, was unforgettable. Everyone singing to the Lord, it was a tiny glimpse of heaven. I'm thankful that we have a God who hears our prayers, who entrusts us with sharing His gospel, who is active and is ALIVE. I'm thankful for the people I've met and can serve alongside. I'm thankful for my leaders and their counsel. I'm thankful that I can call this city home but I know that something better is beyond this life, a home that I long for. I'm thankful that I'm surrounded by encouragement, boldness, and love. I'm thankful that one day, all things will be made right.

Friday, June 04, 2010

6 Observations

1) The Trost family has ZERO luck with cars.
2) A lady in seriously shredded jeans was at the DOT getting assistance from one of the workers. The lady's phone rings, so to take the call privately, she just bends over behind the counter while the rest of us just stare at her and the DOT worker has a dumbfounded look on their face.
3) I saw 2 girls riding in the back of a convertible with only swim suits on sitting on the trunk of a car like they were homecoming queens while driving through town. Ridiculous
4) God really comes through... in a big way!
5) People in my church continually exceed my expectations
6) The Gospel has such great power when you're bold and obedient.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

My 27th Birthday Recap

Oh how I love birthdays. It's one of my favorite days ever. I also love celebrating other peoples birthdays. I wonder if I'll ever get tired of celebrating my birthday? I hope not. I have no aversions to getting older, I think its actually exciting. This year, Melissa and I celebrated our birthdays with a BBQ. We grilled brats, hotdogs, and specialty burgers prepared by Kelli and myself. Kelli, thankfully, was the grill master as I socialized with the party-goers and ran after Theo and Mayz. I was so happy to have them at the party. They are the greatest and I love them so much. It was a beautiful day outside so we were able to hang out outside. Nick brought his motorcycle so most of the guys stood around talking about guy stuff while the girls made fun of the guys for segregating themselves. Later on some tennis matches broke out and those were fun to watch. It was a great birthday and I'm so thankful I'm blessed with such amazing friends.