Sunday, February 18

Kelly's Korner Single's Day 2018

 Hi! I'm Laura! These kind of things are always kinda awkward because it's like... "look here's a post all about ME." :) Well here goes:
I'm 33 and single... never married/no kids!  These are my sister's kids who I love spending time with and being silly with! (That man in the background is not having it though!)

I'm a Christian and my faith is very important to me. I'm active in my church and love to learn about living a Gospel centered life. Even though I've been a Christian since college, I feel like I'm always learning something new all the time! I'm looking for a sweet guy who loves Jesus and wants to lead a Godly family. I know that is very very rare these days! 

 I'm an interior designer in Raleigh, NC. I love making things pretty and helping people! I love to have fun and laugh! I enjoy spending time with my extended family and friends. I love being outside, hiking, going to concerts, trying new restaurants and traveling with friends! I love themed dress up parties, anything 80's and Christmas lights! Well basically everything about Christmas! The past two years I've thrown tacky Christmas parties with my friends and we always have the best time!

I love to eat but I also like to work out and be healthy! I've never meet a country ham biscuit or pound cake I didn't like! I'd love to meet a tall, bow-tied, bearded, Southern guy but am not tied to that at all! (See what I did there). ;)  Know anyone? If so leave a comment here! :)

Friday, August 22

No shame in my game! ;)

On the left at a wedding this summer! 

Hi, my name is Laura and there is no shame in my game! I am linking up with Kelly's Korner today for her "Show us your Single's Day!" 

I am 30 years old and just moved to Nashville, TN less than a month ago! I love Jesus, life, and people!

With my newborn niece Claire! 
I am a campus missionary so I love young people. Since I got saved as a freshman in college, I have had a heart for the next generation! I love to mentor girls, lead bible studies, put on women’s events, and throw parties! Working at East Carolina suited me well! ;) Now in Nashville I will be doing campus ministry at Belmont and Lipscomb.

In Charleston this summer! I'm on the far right... green shirt!
I am a pretty typical Southern girl. I love shopping, cooking, and decorating etc. I love to have fun, try new things and travel. But I am not a thrill seeker ie no bungee jumping or tattoos for me! 

In my new town! Nashville!!
Would love to meet a fun guy who loves Jesus and lives in the Nashvilleish  area! If you know any send them my way! You can leave a comment here and include your email!

From Greenville, NC to Nashville, TN

So I know I haven’t written in forever… but have some news: I moved to Nashville, TN!!!

Let me give a little back story: for a few years I have felt the Lord stirring something in my heart as far as a transition goes. I have been doing campus ministry at ECU, my alma mater for years and loved it! But knew the Lord had something else for me up His sleeve too. So I tried doing a few other things at our local church to see if those were the transitions but they never were really fruitful or amounted to anything substantial.
On the pedestrian bridge overlooking downtown Nashville!
I have always thought about moving, but the timing has never been right, until now! J Last fall I started the conversations with my campus director and kept him in the loop the whole time during the “figure out what my transition is” period! Lots of prayer, fasting, and conversations took place for me to reach my decision to move out to Nashville, even a trip out here over spring break! 

I am so excited about this new chapter of my life! I will be working in campus ministry at Belmont and Lipscomb! I went on campus this week! Eeek I felt a freshman because I didn't know where anything was! I decided to give myself a 6 month window to just learn the ropes and build relationally!

Another cool part of this move is who I moved with! Kendall, a friend for the past 5 years was also wanting to move to a bigger city. She flew out here to interview and found us a super cute apartment all in the same weekend! Praise God it was her and not me! I would have been so nervous! She found the apartment in just a few hours!

Decorating has been so much fun!

So life in Nashville is good so far, definitely an adjustment though! The packing up and moving part was hard emotionally and physically! I have never had so many bruises all over my body! Ha!! I am also a packrat so it was hard to decided what to take/get rid of/ throw away etc! I still would like to get new bedding and a secretary style desk, but other than that I am mostly settled in!

Kendall Anne had this awesome living room furniture! Pay no attention to my coffee table and end table! ;)
I know the next few months will an adjustment too; meeting new friends, find my niche on campus, and learning my way around the city! I have only had a real meltdown once since the move, which is great for me! I keep reminding myself that it will get easier. And it has! Today I found a great local grocery store and went in the ever familiar Fresh Market. I grew up in the town where Fresh Market had their first store! So it was very nice to go somewhere familiar!! Doing more and more "normal" every day life things really helps this feel real and not just vacation! It is slowly sinking in that this is my new home! 

Tuesday, February 18

2 Soup Recipes for You! (GERD friendly)

Here are 2 Soup Recipes for You!

So I am linking up again with Kelly’s Korner. Here are a few of my favorite soup recipes. I was recently doing a Daniel Fast and these were two of the recipes I came across. They were so yummy that I now make these recipes all the time, especially the White Bean Chili one! 

Just a side note, I suffer from GERD and have a hard time eating onions, garlic, & tomatoes. Which makes it difficult to cook in the wintertime because a lot of yummy soups and recipes contain those things. These two recipes are delicious to me with leaving out the problem inducing ingredients! 

Sweet Potato & Black Bean soup. 
I know it sounds a little funny, but it is sooooo good! PS I don't puree the soup, too messy!


8 cups Vegetable Broth (I Just use water) 
1 pound sweet potatoes (about 3 cups), peeled and diced
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
2 cups cooked brown rice
1/2 cup chopped celery
1/2 cup chopped onion (I omit this)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley or 2 teaspoons dried parsley
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon thyme
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
Place all ingredients in a large stock pot. Heat to boiling. Reduce heat, and simmer 20 minutes. Discard bay leaf. Place half of soup in a food processor or blender, and process until smooth. (You may need to do this in two batches, because filling your processor or blender more than half full could cause the hot soup to pop the lid.) Return to stock pot, and cook 10 more minutes.
Yield: 8 servings (serving size: about 1 1/4 cups) 

My fave: White Bean Chili!
I have looked for a really long time for a white bean chili that didn't contain diary and finally found this one! For some reason the only soup I think should have diary is regular yummy white potato soup. In my book, chili doesn't have dairy. If you love it great, but for some reason the thought of it just grosses me out! 
Adjustments I made:
1.) I leave out the corn, bell peppers, jalapenos, shallots, & chili powder 
2.) I use one can of white northern beans, navy beans, & cannelloni beans. (I like the different shapes and shades of white.)
3.) I used 3/4 tsp of dried cilantro (Simply b/c it keeps longer than fresh.)
4.)  I didn't puree this recipe either
5.) I used extra lime b/c it is soooo good in the soup! I squeeze some right in my bowl right before I eat it ! 

Hope you enjoy and if you know any other GERD free recipes you want to send my way please do! 

Saturday, May 18

What I've Been Up to Lately!

School is out for the summer! Which means my day-to-day schedule/life as I know it changes quite a bit! So here is what I have been up to lately!

I came home the Thursday before Mother's Day to go hear a comedian with my mom and aunt! Jeanne Roberson. She is hilarious and one of my favorite public speakers because she makes you feel like you are in her living room listening to stories! She has tons of videos on youtube. This is my favorite, entitled "Don't send a man to the grocery store." She isn't male bashing but explaining the difference between left brain and right brain,,, (it is also called elsewhere, "Left Brain's Grocery List."

I just love listening to her! I was one of the youngest people at her show! Tons of senior citizens were there and it was a prime people watching night! She is popular among people who love Southern, clean comedy. Which includes myself and 70 year old!

While at home I have also been doing lots of things on my "Greensboro list."Things like getting my great grandmother's china, washing out old mason jars from my grandparents basement to decorate with, cleaning silver, buying fabric for a chair for my room in Greenville etc. I have gotten most things on my list done. This is how I have cleaned my silver.  With aluminum foil, salt, baking soda, and hot water. I love pinterest for these type of what I call "old lady secrets."

But the main reason I am in Greensboro is to meet with all of my ministry partners! I have been meeting  with as many as possible! I am so thankful for all of the people who partner with me in ministry! Together we truly are changing lives! I love the opportunity to share what is going on at ECU and invite people to be a part of it!  I am speaking at a church tomorrow and I was getting my notes together and came across this blog post which is a great summery of why I love campus ministry so much!

I have just a few more days in Greensboro, so I am trying to make the most of it. Tonight I am going to have a wild night of playing cards with my mom, my aunt, and a few of my mom's friends! ;)

Sunday, April 28

Fat Mirrors and Dove Videos

So lately I have not been liking how I look or talking well about my body. I know I am not obesese, but in all honestly I have gained 5-10lbs in the past year. No big deal, I just need to watch what I eat and exercise right! Right!

Well I don't know what my deal has been b/c I have sort of been obsessing over it. I try to camouflage my body and cover up the extra weight. This takes forever and stresses me out. One thing I have done that has helped is to remove the "fat mirror" that was hanging on my closet door. You know how some mirrors are skinny, fat, or normal. Well removing this mirror, which actually needs to be thrown out has helped tremedously. So has getting a pedicure, buying a pair of jack rogers, a few clothes that fit. (PS  the jack rogers were my "I got my tax return back" splurge!) All that has been great but I think the thing is that I don't need to look in a mirror that much anyway. I just need to make sure everything is covered up and that I don't have something in my teeth!

Also, I came across these dove videos and realized how important it is to not worry about my image. Of course scripture is uber helpful, but something about watching these videos made everything "click" in my brain! Click this to watch my favorite video on the dove website! I couldn't believe the women could not come up with anything that they love about their bodies. I love my eyes, my fingernails, and my collarbone area (random I know)! My eyes really are my favorite, but they are inherited from my namesake great grandma, my granddaddy and mama! Watch these videos! It is sooooo crazy what the media tells us about our looks. God created us in His image! He thinks we are beautiful! But the most beautiful part about us that know Him, is that we are His!!

I did order a cookbook that I am excited about to help me eat healthy! Dr. Josh Axe also has a facebook page with lots of helpful hints etc.

But in general I have decided to just be healthy and embrace the body that I have! Everyone isn't a supermodel. Even supermodels don't look like supermodels!

Conferences this Past Year

Our ECU Crew at Campus Harvest!
The month of February was filled with conferences. First was our annual Campus Harvest. This is in Durham, NC for our college students. We took 60 students from East Carolina to join the crow of 700 students from Virginia, Tennessee, & North Carolina. It was a fun weekend where tons of students gave their lives to the Lord, 6 from ECU got baptized, and 6 from ECU felt called into full time campus ministry. 

Cute girls! Rachel on left is one girl I mentor that got water baptized!!
Rachel getting Baptized!
Grace and I had an awesome opportunity to speak during one of the break out sessions. We talked about "Being Set Free and Sent Out." It was about receiving healing to be able to go out and do all that God has called you to do! We just talked about how to practically recieve healing and how their really is no formula. For me it has just been through time spent with Jesus, praying and worshiping to music in my room and reading my Bible. I have also received healing during church, worship nights, conferences, Harvest Institute, the EN School of Ministry, the School of Empowerment, going to Christian Counseling, reading Christian books, reading novels, watching movies and so much more! 
Seriously one time I really felt like I was supposed to watch the Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Target was selling it at the time for $5 so I bought it and watched it. Well there was this one scene between a couple and I just balled. God was dealing in my heart about how I could be loved and have a Godly relationship. God is awesome in that He knows our hearts, what will "speak to us" and He uses that for His purposes!! 
All of us Campus Ministers!
The weekend following Campus Harverst, a group of our Young Professional ladies (and friends) went up to the DC area to the Rethink Singleness Conference! This semester I am helping to lead a Young Professional's women's Bible Study with two friends at our local church. Our group combined with two other groups (a coed and a guys group) make up the new Young Professionals group at our church! It has been fun to get the ball rolling and I can't wait to see all that God does through the YP ministry!
All of us with Lynette! We felt like celebrities b/c she posted this picture on her blog! 
I love Ron and Lynette's love story. They are Pastors in Raleigh, NC and NYC.  Lynette was 40 when she got married. Her book Remember the Roses is a must read! It talks all about her journey with the Lord navigating singleness and how her love story unfolded.

Well the conference was awesome. I felt like I was in their living room, eating some popcorn, pilled up on the couch listening to their every word. It was really encouraging!! We also heard dating advice, always a fun topic!
Hanging out with all of these awesome ladies was amazing as well! I am so thankful that God has surrounded me by such great friends! Any season of life is much easier when you have fun friends to go through it with!
Me and Elissa!
One of my best friends in the world was there! We didn't know for sure if each other were going to be there!  So, I was so plesantly surprised to see her at the conference! Elissa and her best friend Janice flew up from Texas to be there that weekend. It was great to spend time with her! Phone calls and facetime are great but nothing beats actual face to face time!!

All in all two awesome conferences!!