December 31, 2010

Out with the Old - In with the New (Year)

     I hate to start this post on a sad note, but I got some terrible news yesterday.  A classmate of mine and his girlfriend were involved in a tragic car accident with a presumed drunk driver.  Both of them passed away. Please keep the Bush and Scott families in your prayers.  These two individuals had everything to look forward to, and they both were good, kind people.  As we start a new year tonight, take time to be thankful for the people in your life and say an extra "I love you."

     To say 2010 had its ups and downs would be a drastic understatement.  My dad is was a small business owner.  After struggling through the current economy conditions, my dad had to file bankruptcy.  My family like so many others has endured financial hardship this year.  I finished my first year of law school with some success.  I can't remember a time when I didn't want to go to law school.  It is so rewarding to actually see this dream come true.  My best friend from college decided to leave the Southeast and move back to her hometown of Dallas, TX.  I have missed seeing her as often as I used to.  My entire family has an almost clean bill of health.  My Gamecocks have had an outstanding year on the field!  Finally, I broke up with my boyfriend of two & half years.  This in itself was an up and down.  It was a down in realizing that the person I loved so much and had thought I was going to be with the rest of my life was really not the "one" for me.  However, my life post-break-up has been enjoyable, entertaining, and lively to say the least.  I can't wait to see want 2011 will bring.  This will be my attitude toward the new year.... (I apologize for the language; check out Bits of Truth for more amazing quotes)

     On to my NYE celebration!  Usually, I don't do anything big for New Year's.  Typically, I spend it with a close group of friends or family.  An oyster roast is on the menu and a bonfire is the centerpiece of the occasion.  These nights are special because I am with the people that mean the most to me.  This year, however, I am doing something BIG! (well big to me)  I am going to the Snyder's Ball at the South Carolina Aquarium.  I don't have any expectations for the night other than to have a fabulous time with great friends.  Kaley and Drew and well as another couple from Columbia that I am good friends with are coming down.  Close friends from high school and law school will be there as well.  And, I am bound to run into other friends that I don't know will be there.  I am excited to dance the night away and ring in 2011.

     I wish each of you a Happy New Year! Please be safe tonight and rock what little time we have left of 2010!


December 29, 2010

Holiday Wrap-Up Part II

With all of my family living within 20-30 miles of each other, the holidays run relatively smoothly and I get to see everyone.  Christmas Eve is spent at my Nana and Papa's (my mom's parents) house.  Christmas Day is spent at my house with just my parents, sister, and me.  We cook a big Christmas breakfast and lunch, and then comes the inevitable wonderful food coma.  Christmas night we go over to my Aunt Lynn's mom's house to eat, again, and play with all of our the little ones new toys.  This year at my Nana's one person in particular had tons of presents under the tree.  They belonged to the most precious two-year-old.

He would have been happy with tissue paper!

Ohhh yeahhh legosss

Counting his hotwheels...he got all the way up to ten.

The book I gave him to help him learn to count the "Carolina" way.   I  gave him the alphabet version for his birthday.

His new bike
One of my closest friends from home shares his birthday with Jesus and Jimmy Buffett.  Jake and I have been friends since we were tots.  Our dads were in the same fraternity at Carolina.  This year, Jake turned 21, and always joked that nothing would be open for him to celebrate at midnight on Christmas Eve/Christmas morning.  Well after some calling around, we found a place in downtown Beaufort that was going to keep its regular hours that night.  So off we went on Christmas Eve to celebrate his birthday with the rite of passage midnight drink.

The group and the shot I bought him at midnight

Me and Jake - like a little brother
After hanging out for a little while, we all hurried home, so Santa could come.  Presents between my family were opened that morning.  I got mostly clothes, makeup from Benefit, new Wallabees, and some movies.  As I have gotten older, my gift-asking has gotten more practical - i.e. "Mom can you just pay my rent for the month?"  But nonetheless, Santa was very good to me and love everything I got.  My sister got Just Dance 2 for the Wii. After we opened all our presents, Ainsley wanted to play the game.  I having never heard of it was not sure what I was getting myself into.  And let me tell you, this is no easy game and actually becomes quite the workout.  Needless to say, I ran out the next day and bought my own to take back to Charleston.

I wish I had pictures of us dancing because it was hilarious.  Two songs in and I am sweating.  My personal favorites are "Rolling on the River", Tina Turner and "Hey Ya", Outkast.  I don't know how Tina is still doing what she does, because this girl was about to give out.  If you have a Wii this game would be a great investment!

Ainsley and I - next year's Christmas card
I wish it could have lasted longer.  Christmas always comes and goes so fast.  I am back in Charleston and getting ready for NYE.  More to come on that later. Tootles for now!


December 28, 2010

Holiday Wrap-Up Part I

I finished my third semester of law school on December 11th! I am halfway to becoming an attorney.  I stayed in Charleston that weekend to celebrate with my friends from school before I headed home for the holidays.  Two of my closest friends from college came down to Charleston that weekend, so I was excited to see them.  Kaley and I were both Chi Omegas and I have been friends with her and Drew since my freshman year.  Kaley and Drew were celebrating Drew's graduation from Carolina, but they ended up celebrating aaaallootttt more!  On Friday night a big group of our mutual friends went to dinner at Moe's Downtown.

Kaley and I at dinner
What I am thinking: "I wonder when Drew is going to propose?"
The next day I took my tax final and ran some errands around town.  Kaley and I had been texting all day and decided to meet up downtown later than night after her and Drew went to dinner.  I went to an oyster roast for a good friend that was leaving the next day for six months to work on a boat in the Caribbean.  As we were getting everyone together to head downtown, I get a text message from Kaley, "We have more to celebrate tonight!" Insert squeals, OMGs, and a few tears!  Kaley and Drew are the first of my close friends to get engaged.  I could not be happier for them.

The Rock!

The Future Mr. and Mrs. Kirkpatrick
After a weekend of celebrating, I headed down to "real" lowcountry of South Carolina for two weeks of family, friends, and relaxing.  My "brother" turned 17 while I was home.  Lucky enough, he had a basketball game on his birthday, so my sister and I had to make sure everyone knew it was his birthday and that he was good and embarrassed.  And, he loved every minute of it!

Ainsley, Will and I
Will likes to refer to himself as "Big Daddy."  Will's parents - Aunt Lynn and Uncle Jeff - are mine and my sister's un-official god-parents.  The three of us are like brother and sister to each other.  Ainsley and Will are less than nine months apart and fight like brother and sister.

My little hometown puts on a small scale Festival of Lights.  It is set up along the local nature trail.  My family walked the trail together one night.  Earlier in the month, the Boys and Girls Club had brought in a snow machine to make snow for the kiddos.  Here are some of my favorite displays.

Santa and his Reindeer

Fishing Bear

I spent most of break in my pajamas/sweats.  It was so nice to not have to be anywhere or have to do anything.  Christmas Eve/Christmas Day pictures to come in Part II.  Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and starting to gear up for the New Year.


December 26, 2010

Old Fashioned Christmas: Nuttings

My Nana works at the Juliette Gordon Low House in Savannah, GA.  Juliette Gordon Low was the founder of the Girl Scouts.  When troops come to visit, Nana gives them tours of the house and does crafts or activities that young girls would have done during the Victorian era.

One Christmas tradition that she does with the girls each year is called Nuttings.  Each nutting was actually a howled out walnut shell.  There would be a small item - a rock, ribbon, penny, etc. - in each shell.  Each item had a special meaning and whatever it was would be what that person would have a bounty of in the new year.  At the Girl Scout house, the girls would make their own nuttings using brown paper.  Then, they would swap them with their friends.  These nuttings would have more than one item in them.  So, several years back, Nana decided to make some nuttings for our family.  After we open our presents on Christmas Eve at her house, all of the grandchildren and one great-grand pick one and see what our New Year will bring.  All of us really get into and look forward to it every year.  I liked my nutting this year and believe it to be true of my year to come (at least I hope, maybe minus the hard work, but I believe it is inevitable).

This is my nutting for 2011.

Rock - hard work
Heart - friendship
Sugar Cube - happiness
Blue Ribbon - loyalty
Words of Wisdom - "Look before you leap!"

December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!

Christmas is my favorite day of the year.  Under all the presents, yummy food, and time with family and friends lies the real reason for Christmas.  It is the birth of my Savior!  My church choir sang a song last Sunday called "From the Manger to the Cross."  This song sums up the true meaning of Christmas.  Christians celebrate the birth of Christ, but if it was not for the Cross and the Resurrection, there would be no celebration.

During our Christmas Eve service, my pastor made reference to the movie Talladega Nights.  He talked about the Ricky Bobby's prayer to baby Jesus, and that he liked praying to the Christmas Jesus the best.  Believe me not the reference I thought would be mentioned during the Christmas Eve service.  But his point was that we tend to pray to different Jesus(s) - such as bail-out Jesus or convenient Jesus.  His sermon reminded me that (1) I do need to take more time for prayer and (2) that its okay to pray to the baby Jesus.  Because without his birth and without his sacrifice, I would not have eternal life.

I hope everyone had a very Merry Christmas! Holiday wrap-up to come shortly...


December 24, 2010

Here goes nothing...

Thanks to my friend Megan (My Two Cents) I got sucked into the world of blogs.  It started out innocently enough just by reading hers when I had some down time between classes, reading, and studying.  And, it quickly turned into me sitting up one or two in the morning finding new blogs to read.  Blogs easily became my new procrastination tool along with Facebook and online shopping (J.Crew and Anthro are bookmarked for easy access). So after months of reading blogs, I have decided to dive into the world myself.

I am a second year law student at the Charleston School of Law, so there might be some ranting, raving, and general stress release from school on here.  But mostly, I hope to give everyone a peek into my sometimes crazy, mostly fun (when I am not sitting in the lawbrary), laid-back life.  I am not promising fireworks, because my life can be boring at times.

As for the title of this blog, it comes from one of my favorite songs, Soulshine, by the Allman Brothers.  I am a fan of all kinds of music, but I mostly listen to older stuff.  This song has been a favorite of mine for sometime.  Here is the song...

So, let your Soulshine...