Japan (Tokyo).


A week in Japan made for a very packed adventurous week. It did NOT disappoint. First of all, Tokyo is UNREAL. As a girl who loves cities, subways and everything in between I was in heaven. I hate cars, and they honestly don’t really likeme. If you are impressed with Chicago, Boston, or NYC’s subway system – nothing compares to the largest city in the world.

A little glimpse:

Processed with VSCOcam with g3 presetRead More »

Screw Beauty Standards.


The last month or two there have been 2 shows that I admit I watched, and then I feel bad for all girls in the next generation. A generation who is growing up thinking the less clothes the more sexy you are.

The standards of beauty are constantly changing. And girls need to know that they don’t need to fit them. As a tiny example – I was getting my eyebrows threaded, and was saying how I wish I had thicker eyebrows (if you haven’t noticed those are in right now) and she giggled, and said “A few years ago thin eyebrows were in, so it will change back. You have beautiful eyebrows.” As women, can we always tell each other these things?

It is true though. If one day media decides that beauty is defined by being curvy, then I will never fit that standard. And I am learning it is OK. If I am 25 and struggling with how I should look, how scary is that for the 12 year old girls today. But for all the girls who watch other women walk around in lingerie as the standard for beauty they will always be disappointed.Read More »



I imagine many people are annoyed at Facebook lately.

I, for sure am one of those people. Everyone sharing their opinion, trying to convince someone else that they are right, someone else is wrong. I don’t want to hear about it on Facebook – go do something about what you claim is so important to you (I am including my self in this as well).

This last weekend was one of those weekends I felt my heart sinking lower into my chest as I learned about the attacks on Paris, Beirut, Baghdad, and Kenya. I am so sad for this world. Sometimes I think any prayer is just too small to help.Read More »

OCD is not an adjective.

This week (October 11-17) is OCD Awareness Week! So I am here to spread awareness because I am incredibly tired of people misusing the term OCD.

If you have once said “YES! I color coordinate my closet too, I am soooo OCD” then I am speaking to you!

You actually aren’t OCD because interchanging OCD and organized is incredibly offensive. And while we are talking about all things offensive…

Those products actually should NOT exist.

I mean, what if everyone around kept saying “I ate so much right now I am so diabetic” How silly does that sound? (VERY silly and offensive).

This world needs some tough love with this issue – WORDS MATTER Y’ALL.

Here’s the thing. This is actually a BIG deal.

Not all OCD people are clean freaks. I am not. My fear has nothing to do with contamination. Other people who do have obsessions with germs, do love things being clean but it is debilitating, and they perform many rituals and compulsions to relieve their anxiety.

Cleaning is also not the only compulsion with OCD. Tapping, counting, checking are all compulsions done over and over again to relieve anxiety TEMPORARILY.

This gives a good picture of what is constantly going on with someone suffering with OCD:

Except I would probably replace “distress” with “anxiety”.

The most important thing to do is to educate ourselves, and not just when mass shootings happen. Get the conversation going now. Talk about how we can break the stigma, and know that those who feel like they are trapped inside their brain feel helpless, and ashamed. Be there for support, listen and ask questions.

For some prospective – I started showing symptoms as the a very young age (around 10), I didn’t understand why I was doing and feeling the way I was until high school (thanks MTV true life: I have OCD) – NO joke that is how I realized my disorder had a name. It wasn’t until my junior year of COLLEGE that I told my friends and family, who encouraged me to get help. I participated in Behavioral Cognitive therapy where I went through exposure therapy (more on that another time).

To open your eyes even MORE, I highly encourage you to read these real quotes from those suffering from OCD:


Some of the ones that resonated with me:

“You lose time. You lose entire blocks of your day to obsessive thoughts or actions. I spend so much time finishing songs in my car before I can get out or redoing my entire shower routine because I lost count of how many times I scrubbed my left arm.” — Kelly Hill

“Ever seen ‘Inside Out’? With OCD, it’s like Doubt has it’s own control console.” — Josey Eloy Franco

“Imagine all your worst thoughts as a soundtrack running through your mind 24/7, day after day.” — Adam Walker Cleveland

I am sharing something personal, because I have become an OCD Advocate for the International OCD Foundation to spread awareness through social media, and sharing personal stories is the best way in my opinion! And if you are struggling, you are not alone!

Just know people are battling things that you can’t see, and what we say matters.

Love always,


Contemporary Christian – songs from my past.

Contemporary Christian music was my “type” of music all the years of growing up. But Rebecca St. James? Was my idol. Ok ok, Christians shouldn’t have idols so she was my role model ;). Think of her as my Britney Spears. I sang, learned to play the guitar and just wanted to be just like her! I mean we both had brown curly hair and brown eyes. Totally twins right?


She also was a Christian Woman singer who would wear leather pants. *GASP* Scandal am I right? More like Confident paving a path of being a total moral rebel. Rebecca – if you are reading this, thank you for all the concerts, pictures, autographs, and life lessons. Ya probably not reading this….

Here’s the thing. I wasn’t sheltered, I know all the bands you listened to. Just saying these bands mean way more to me. Childhood and teen memories flood through me when I listen to their lyrics.

And you may think this makes me “soft” but listen to “Alive” by Skillet and you will learn that Christians can rock man. Do it. Skillet. Saw them live at “Soul Fest.” Yes, a festival of all Christian music.

Barlow Girl? Looked into my soul…you know who did even more? ZOE GIRL. Come on. That was like the 3LW in the Christian world. They won Dove awards (Yes, that is a thing) and were plain awesome. Also similar to Cheetah Girls.


Play a song and I will sing it – Even after not hearing it for 10 years. Sweet brag I know. If there was Trivia for these kinds of things you bet you want me on your team. If it’s a “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire Final Question” you want me to be your phone call.

Hawk Nelson signed my poster and drew a race car because I asked them to play “race car”. Listen to “Letters to the President” by them. Or don’t.

I have seen Switchfoot many times and I loved every second. Freshman year of high school I wore Switchfoot wrist bands with a batman t shirt and all my binders were decorated with Switchfoot…wait, is this why I wasn’t a fan of high school? I mean “Walk to Remember” was huge for Switchfoot. Many Moore’s “Only Hope”? Ya, Switchfoot’s song and they sing it way better (don’t worry you still my girl Mandy). Switchfoot is still relevant though ya’ll. Jon Foreman’s EPs (Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer) – you really should check out.

Don’t even get me started with Relient K. “Sadie Hawkins” anyone? “Mood Ring” was genius. I could do a whole new blog on them. Just genius.

Plumb – My go to band to sing in Chapel.

Jars of Clay & DC Talk– “I don’t really care if they label me a Jesus freak.”

You can reminisce about Backstreet Boys…I will be over here with Newsboys.

It has been a blast going down music memory lane.

Love always,


You are enough.

As many people close to me know, I care greatly what people think. I know, very silly. Everyone is different and not everyone will see things how you see them. Who cares? I am one who needs to learn to be confident that I am who I am, created by God to do something radical on this earth.

Here’s the thing. YOU ARE ENOUGH.

I was reminded of this the other day. I was also reminded of Esther. (Actually forgot about that book in the Bible all together).

Esther 4:14 – “…Who knows if perhaps you were made queen for just such a time as this?” Boom. Esther was enough; Revealing she herself was a Jew, saved her people. It encouraged those exiled Jews at the time to have courage and hope.

The photo with this post I took while in Africa. This woman was just sitting and looking at the BEAUTIFUL place she lives. I wish I could have talked with her. I think all women no matter where, need to know they are loved.

You were created for today. You are loved. I have lost sight of this for awhile now, and no matter what adversity you face from other people never forget that.

I have been coaching middle school girls to run a 5K and also to learn what makes them unique. And how our differences and similarities are all important as we become part of a team. You are different and unique, and this world, your team, needs you.

Love always,