Saturday, December 24, 2011

.unexpected christmas.

this year has brought so many unexpected things - the biggest blessing of them all? my man... he's incredible and has been such a gift - one that i'm willing to sacrifice much for.

this year, we were at risk of having to sacrifice christmas in texas. GASP!!!! this guy i love, he's in the medical field - often those dedicated, healing people don't get time off of work for christmas. our expectation and plan was that he and i would have a quiet christmas on the central coast of california because he'd have just started a new job.

no job yet... the blessing in disguise is that we got to come home for christmas!!! this would have been the first year i've not been in texas with my family and i was feeling a little blue about it, but grateful to be with my man. instead, we're home :)

christmas is new this year - for both of us:

it's jarred's first bouma ugly sweater party!!!
- nasty ugly sweaters, hair & makeup

- lots of good cheer
- pictionary (gerrit made a snowman!)

- LOADS of crazy people celebrating - welcome to our Dutch chaos, babe!

and my first minefee christmas
- snow in west texas

- christmas cookies with mom minefee & jarred

- this sweet little girl that we can't wait to get out to california :)

- waiting out the birth of jarred's niece - charley cate minefee - any day now!

new families are so much fun. if you told me last year that this next christmas would be spent in midland, texas with the family of my new man, i'd have laughed... much like zechariah and abraham & sarah laughed at their unexpected gifts. God is so good, ridiculously faithful and always right on time.

i'm so grateful for my unexpected Christmas both in texas and with this guy. (we only sent ONE christmas card, if you live in lima, peru - you got lucky!)

Friday, November 4, 2011

.my best friend.

here are the reasons why my boyfriend is my best friend:

(side note: i am currently sick with a stomach flu)

- he stayed by my side until midnight making sure i had everything i needed

- he called the airlines to cancel our flights we were supposed to be on today and pleaded with them to waive the change fee because i was so sick (this may or may not happen, jury is still out)

- he showed up at my flu-infested house at 8:30, got me a fresh glass of water and asked if i wanted any food

- he did the laundry and went and bought groceries for this weekend including chicken noodle soup, saltines & sprite

- he kisses my bacteria-infested body on the forehead every time he leaves the house... just because he loves me.

here's to you babe... your the best best friend/boyfriend i could ever ask for. i love you and i'll pray for you to not catch this mess.

Friday, October 14, 2011

.cruise control.

i set my cruise control whenever i drive on the freeway... except in LA because if you set your cruise control you'd get killed or kill someone else. when you don't set your cruise control in LA, sometimes you go (with the speed of traffic) too fast. like 83 in a 65 too fast. and then what happens? that's right, you get pulled over.

in inglewood.

people - avoid inglewood, in general. especially avoid getting pulled over in inglewood. take my word for it.

the scene: mid-may, 11pm, dark, driving home from grandma's house in the OC back to SB

the passenger: my boyfriend (only 6 weeks-ish into boyfriend status at the time)

the location: 105 freeway in inglewood

long story short: doing 83, pulled over, cop was nice, gave me a fix-it ticket for my texas plates, i was thankful for softening the ticket blow but sad to part with texas plates, cost was $170 vs $480 plus traffic school, easy fix... right.

what to do in this situation:
1) get registration changed (even though it doesn't seem worth it for car you're about to sell)
2) don't let not-too-smart dmv dude confiscate your old tx proof of registration
3) send in ALL forms including tx proof of registration
4) get ticket paid & dismissed

what to NOT do in this situation: (a.k.a. my life)
1) neglect to send in tx proof of registration
2) get denied dismissal of your $25 violation
3) call incessantly and reach no one to see if your new california registration on the car you're no longer about to own is sufficient proof that you changed the registration

right above that line up there? ^ read that statement.

i've been to haiti multiple times, i lived a mile from mexico and have spent a significant amount of time there - those places have really $*##(*$)@# governmental structure. i have been LESS FEARFUL for my life than i was in inglewood. i kid you not.

if you do the "what NOT to do" scenario, you know what happens?
1) you fear for your life after walking through security screening to enter the courthouse the first time
2) you get told you have to COME BACK for a court date
3) you cry as soon as you get back on the freeway (be sure to get out of inglewood before crying)
4) you consult lawyer-friends, pray the blood of Jesus over the envelope and send in dang tx proof of registration that you had to obtain from tx along with a letter requesting your court date & ticket be dismissed because you've submitted the right paperwork
5) you check status online, it says "dismissed" and then it says, "next action" and lists your court date
6) in order to potentially save your life and spare you from tears, you decide that means "dismissed" and ignore the 2nd part
7) you pray there isn't a warrant out for your arrest

this is my current situation. please pray that i remember to use my cruise control in LA and when you pray, thank the good Lord that my boyfriend still loves me after all kinds of crazy. thanks.

p.s. - there's a reason 2pac raps about inglewood people.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

serve & respect

i drive... alot. while i drive i do one of 4 things: listen to tunes, talk on the phone, pray or listen to podcasts. this last 4 days i've spent a significant amount of time in the car and i've never been more thankful that Jarred and i respectively have two amazing pastors from the churches we've recently attended who podcast sermons that continue to grow and change us both as individuals and as a couple. mike erre, my pastor for 7 years of my life taught an incredible sermon on marriage that i listened to today and as i heard the way he described that men should treat women in dating and in marriage - i saw the man that is stealing my heart and becoming my best friend.

here's where i saw it: mike said, "single people, listen up. you will be married to her in whatever way you dated her. so ladies, does he serve you? do you see a willingness to place your well-being ahead of his own? is he a threat to your purity or a protector of it? does he demand his needs be met?"

this picture is what i see in my man. he serves me... he makes sure i'm taken care of, he opens my door, he loves me well and not only me but those he knows are important to me.

he is willing to place my well-being ahead of his own... remember how he's moving across the country to be with me as we speak? and all this because he knows how much i love my job and am not willing to give it up so he is giving up loads of things to be with me? remember that? he is a protector of my purity and not a threat... you get no details, but let's just say he's a man of his word and a man of integrity and i have never once felt like i was fighting that uphill battle alone. he doesn't demand his needs be met... in fact, he got me 8 jars of my favorite salsa in texas and is driving it to california, talk about meeting needs :)

he goes on to say: "I pray that men, in ever increasing yet ever imperfect ways you would place her well-being ahead of your own and you would begin to die to your entitlements and sacrifice to serve her. and women, in ever increasing yet ever imperfect ways you would respect and love your man, as he is, not as you want him. and ladies, would you respect a man who served you in that way? of course you would. and men, would you serve a woman who respected you in that way? of course you would."

people, i have NO PROBLEM respecting this man who has served me so well and sacrificed so much. i am blown away. in fact, i respect him and love him even more because of his willingness to die to his entitlements (a better paying job, cheaper rent, living near family, a bigger house) and sacrifice for me. it makes me want to do ANYTHING I CAN to love him, help him succeed and treat him with respect. it makes me ridiculously proud to call him mine.

then mike finishes with this - "men, women need us to delight in them... as they are. and ladies, we need you to respect us and to love us into our future. what happens when people start treating each other this way is that you get a picture of the gospel of Jesus."

good gracious i pray that our relationship is even the tiniest picture of the gospel of Jesus and that more and more as we grow as a couple - we show more grace, sacrifice more of ourselves, give more respect and love even deeper so that Jesus radiates through all that we are. this life is beautiful. this man is imperfectly incredible. i am beyond blessed.

Thursday, September 29, 2011

.learning to need...

i was re-vamping my blog (which is still in process because frankly, i got tired last night, so bear with me), but i realized the title of it is "learning to need Him." i debated if i should change that, if i should modify it - i mean, what do you do with a phrase like that? i think i am and always will be learning to need more of Jesus. i can hope that i'll get to a point where i can say, "alright, i've learned it all. i'm up to the brim with learning how to have more of Jesus and we're in a good place. check." but that's not how it works. i know we're never done.

sadly, if you were to ask me what i'm learning to need right now, i'd probably not say it's much of Jesus. what i'm learning to need right now are things like more sleep, less stress, a better immune system, more time at home, a job in california for my boyfriend which will mean all of the things listed above will get better...

those are the things i'm learning to need because my mind and body are forcing me to. that and a glass of red wine to cover the multitude.

so where does that leave me? and Jesus - where does that leave Him? i still need Him and the above things absolutely cannot be handled properly without Him, so i guess that leaves me where i started... learning to need Him but taking the long way to get there. say a little prayer for me, for us if you think of it. we've got a bit of learning to do.

.highlights from the motherland.

heineken - welcome to holland!

if 3 days in spain came with highlights, 7 days in holland trumped it, hands down. drumroll please...

American pizza, at the farm of a speed skater with 50 of my crazy Dutch relatives

real windmills and amazing windmill cakes

some successful sloot jumping...

and some not so successful

ridiculously awesome candid photos of me and my sis-in-law

flowers, flowers and more flowers!!!

my smokin' hot boyfriend (i'm related to 3 of them, so there's only one who's smokin' hot) i mean, what's not attractive about a man in borrowed european too-short trunks with cow $h?z running down his legs?!??! but seriously, my guy? he's got a bod and for that and many other things, i'm thankful.

3 words - stroopwaffel ice cream

and the best for last... cutest. nephew. ever.

I <3 Holland. I'm ready to go back. Who's coming?

Saturday, September 24, 2011

.coming "home".

where in the world am i, you might ask? currently i am sitting in a house that is nearing 200 years old, looking at yellow tulips that my grandma gave me as a welcome gift, feeling like i need to go for a LONG run soon because of the excess number of pastries and cheese i have consumed in the last week. i. love. europe. and if i don't come home, don't hate me.

you see, for me, europe feels like coming "home" in a sense of the word. this trip was 3 days in spain and then a week in holland. spain felt like home because i spent a semester there in college and holland feels like home because well, it is the homeland. so many of our meals, traditions and even looks and mannerisms are fully Dutch . i love the feeling of belonging somewhere. it's been a great week.

i know you're dying for some highlights:
- the amazingness that was our apartment in barcelona... seriously, the views and the apartment itself were bomb. and REALLY good priced for a 6 bedroom apartment. feliz.

- sardining ourselves into european elevators... it's fantastic. and my dad? he totally loves it, don't let him fool you.

- bitchin' restaurants with 300 degree ocean views and the quaintest little coffee shops that make my soul happy.

- a boyfriend who is incapable of normalcy in pictures... good gracious i love this guy.

- really fantastical beach towns in spain -

holland to follow... stay tuned!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011


apologies to all who faithfully or not so faithfully read this thing... I have been what they call m.i.a. - i.e. Texas, Haiti, headed to Europe, etc. (i'm secretly hoping that over-abbreviating will accentuate my list of reasons why i've been so busy and unable to post, so if it's not working, work with me).

i promise to do my best to get better.

here's what i've been up to...

TEXAS - for the bridal shower of a sweet friend whose wedding i happen to miss because i'll be in...

SPAIN and HOLLAND - with my family and my beau for 10 days to visit our family (in Holland, not Spain and yes, I know I look more Spanish than Dutch), but in between the two I was in...

HAITI - taking an incredible team of 6 women to work over there for 9 months.

will those excuses suffice? i certainly hope so. i have blog posts swirling in my head about things like the absolute terrifying moments at the inglewood courthouse (but i want to make sure i am crime-free and don't need to go back there first), what God has been teaching me about surrendering expectations and praying His will be done, how Haiti changed me - once again, how the 6 gals who are living in Haiti changed me and are continuing to change me. so for now, click the link about the girls... this is life-changing stuff that will inevitably keep you on your toes until i return...

hasta luego... bonjour... daj... i'll be home soon, pinky promise.

Friday, August 12, 2011

.inspired by these 6.

Click here to read about the life-changing project God is allowing me to be part of. Amazing-ness. I'll get back to the regularly scheduled road-trip picture posting programming someday. This is just too exciting to miss :)

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

.highway 1.

summer + roadtrip = awesomeness

we began our journey in santa barbara and cruised up to pismo beach to spend 4th of july with some of my mom's family. for me, this is the norm, for jarred, maybe a bit overwhelming? if you haven't been around my extended family, your loss... ha. it's true, but what's also true is that it's chaos. i have 18 first cousins, most of them are married & have some kids. so on my mom's side alone, there are over 50 of us. jarred got a small taste in pismo over the 4th. it's beautiful the whole crazy family thing. it was the 4th of july at it's best in an absolutely beautiful spot :)

it was mornings sitting on the porch, overlooking the pacific drinking coffee with my mom's cousins and some family friends. it was mid-day drop-in lunch with my great aunt talking about ministry & Jesus & third world missions. it was evenings with a bbq lit, a glass of wine and about 13 small kiddos running around with my aunt & uncle, their kids & grandkids and more extended family.

we continued up highway 1 to san francisco, making a few stops in beautiful big sur to enjoy the scenery, get some coffee and for jarred to take in what will soon be his new home on the pacific ocean.

we had incredible weather and one of the most beautiful drives in the world.

i am grateful for this guy who loves me well and is willing to sacrifice so much for me.

next up? san francisco!!!