Please click the pictures to visit my other blogs:
Jewel in Cambodia Scarves for Cambodia Journals for the Journey

Monday, December 26, 2011

Engagement Anniversary and Comments on Marriage

On December 26 in 2010, Titus asked me to be his wife.  It was one of the most beautiful and happiest days of my life.

I am a blessed woman.

I can't promise "happily ever after," but certainly "for better OR worse" and NOT FOR GRANTED.

My husband is a blessing and has made our marriage wonderful.  I love waking up next to him in the mornings, watching him brush his teeth and examine himself in the mirror.  I love seeing his waiting face in the window when I come home from work.

I have a hard time blogging or doing anything on my own that doesn't involve him sitting next to me.

And that's all I have for now. :)

Love love love,
Mrs. Titus Romdenh

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


Change is the title of this chapter of my life. Since April 30, I have had to learn what it's like to NOT being a student after being a student for 16 years. Soon-after, I transitioned into the workforce full-time.  Since first entering the post-graduation work-force, I have held four different jobs.  Almost two months ago, I became a wife.  A few weeks after becoming a wife, Titus and I moved from my parents house to our own apartment on the other side of town.  Finally, we just recently began attending a new small group on Wednesday nights.  All of these have been GOOD changes... "for-the-better" changes... but none have been easy.

I'm looking at another change; a change that is going to change a lot of things; a for-the-better, but hard change.

On December 27th, 2011, I was hired by Indiana Wesleyan University as Schedule Specialist in Graduate Organizational Leadership.  It means [much] higher pay, 13 days paid-vacation, health insurance, a wellness program that pays me to walk, and numerous other benefits, including... free tuition for my hubby!!!  Praise the Lord!  We (and others) have been praying for this!  While I admit that I would rather be with those one, two, and three-year-olds that have stolen my heart, my attitude is changing [and it's taken lots of prayer and humility] because I really do trust that this opportunity is God's Best and God's Will for us right now.

I feel nervous... excited... humbled... and honored to be chosen for this position!

Love love love,

Sunday, December 04, 2011

Reflections on time spent not blogging:

Gracious me, it has been a LOOONG TIME since I have blogged.  Almost three weeks ago, I started my last entry with a similar line. Between working 3 jobs, being a new wife, moving into our new apartment (which doesn't have internet,) my sister's surprise visit for Thanksgiving, and etc., I have had LITTLE-TO-NO time to blog in the past few weeks and I am so disappointed about that.  Much has happened.

After waiting more than a month for the previous renters to move out of the apartment that Titus and I signed a contract for, we signed another contract for a different apartment and told our previous landlord-to-be that we were no longer interested in his still-not-empty apartment.  God has been so gracious my husband and I, and we have been B.L.E.S.S.E.D by the generosity of others as we have been given a couch, lamps, end tables, a microwave, a microwave cart, mirrors, knives, etc!  We are still eating our meals either picnic-style on the floor or sitting on the couch beside an end-table.  I'm anxious to have a dinner table where I can display my wedding bouquet 

and have my morning devotions with a cup of strong, black coffee.

In other news:
I am still LOVING my job at the daycare and I think often about the kids on the weekends.  (I still cherish my weekends and some time off, but I do miss my babies!)  I had a conversation with two co-workers on Friday about *having favorites.*  I will be the first to admit that I have favorites; I love 3 or 4 of my babies much more than the others.  One co-worker was quick to say "we shouldn't have favorites" (blah blah blah,) but I really believe it's okay to have favorites IF the other babies aren't treated poorly because they aren't your favorite.

Cracker Barrel is still ROUGH and I have wanted to quit numerous times (especially when I was scheduled to work ON Thanksgiving Day!) but God keeps reminding me that right now Cracker Barrel (both in the prep area and in the dining room) is my mission field.  In fact, I might be the only missionary there... and it's a very dark place to work.  I am growing and learning and certainly being challenged -- all a part of preparation for Cambodia -- and I definitely COVET your prayers that God will be seen in me there.  A few weeks ago, I started writing "God bless you!" on the back of my guests' receipts; but after a guest left a salvation pamphlet under my tip this week, I have been seriously evaluating how I can be a light to my guests, and especially my co-workers.

I could write so much more, but I just heard the dryer finish and I desperately want to finish ironing my clothes so Titus and I can return home and I can eat my leftover Oriental Chicken Salad from our hot date at Applebees last night. :)  I hope I will have an opportunity to write again this week!  Thank you to my loyal readers who remain after I have starved you of blogging for so long. :)

Love love love,

Monday, November 14, 2011

5 years blogging!

Between a wedding and honeymoon, working 3 jobs, being a new wife, and moving into our new apartment, I have had LITTLE-TO-NO time to blog in the past few weeks and I am so disappointed about that.  I have been blogging regularly for just over FIVE years now and to think about all that I have written about on here.. all that has happened in these FIVE years... WOW!  To be honest: I blog for myself, but it definitely makes me feel proud and loved to know that others enjoy reading my blog (even if it's only occasionally!)

So much has happened in only the last week of my life.  God has been so real and faithful to me this week, reminding me that He is Sovereign (Isaiah 45:9) that He has complete authority - and I trust that He will continue to provide and to guide.

Last Sunday morning, I found my gas tank empty. I was so frustrated having to stop and get gas on the way home from church, and angry at myself for accidentally filling the tank (I got distracted *flirting with my husband.*)  On Monday afternoon, gas went up 22 cents!  I laughed at myself for being so frustrated and I thanked God for the blessing of an opportunity to fill my tank before the price jumped.

Last Friday, my favorite Uncle Tom passed away suddenly.  A few days later I was working at Cracker Barrel -- having an almost-miserable time encountering difficulties that slowed down my ability to finish my side-work before I could clock out and go home -- and a co-worker told me that my Aunt Regina (Uncle Tom's wife) and Aunt Janie were there and asking for me.  I was then grateful that I was STILL at work and able to spend some precious moments with them before the craziness of the viewing and funeral.

My twin sis Jessie also received a blessing in her own frustrations.  On Friday, she was trying to buy airline tickets and kept getting error messages that her credit card was being denied.  On Saturday, she was able to buy her tickets for $200 cheaper than Friday's price!

Today I am thankful for reminders of God's faithfulness and sovereignty, and I hope that I am blessed by reading this blog in five more years!
Love love love,

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Mrs. Romdenh

After a crazy, stressful week of working, decorating, shopping, picking up groomsmen at the airport, etc., our wedding finally came and it was beautiful!  Of course not everything went right and I had to let go of getting some things done, but overall... I wouldn't have changed a thing!  There were a few special people missing... wishing our family and "family" in Cambodia could have attended or been more represented.. but we had it videotaped especially for them.

I'm still waiting on pictures from our photographer (who did a WONDERFUL job!!! Seriously the best...) but here are some "behind the scenes" pictures from before the wedding.
LOVE the broach bouquet that my sweet friend Michele made; I didn't see it until a few hours before the wedding.
Loved every moment of pre-wedding Wedding Day spent with my girls!
Packing for our honeymoon.. at the church.. right before the wedding.   Procrastinate much??

After I finished packing for the honeymoon, I made our wedding slide show.  This all took place only hours before the wedding!

Many many thanks to Andrea for numerous things, including doing my make-up.

How many people does it take to dress a bride?

How many people does it take to dress a baby?

Green Bridesmaids' dresses... Bronze MOB dress

Love love love,

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Life WITH a fiancé

After getting engaged December 26th, Titus and I spent only two weeks together before being separated again for almost TEN long months.  We exchanged many emails and facebook messages, spent hours on chat and Skype, and even texted some.... but nothing compares to experiencing life together, hand-in-hand, side-by-side... sweet togetherness.  My bff Loren asked me, "How is it being with your man?"  SO. MANY. EMOTIONS.  It's beautiful.  It's fun.  It's weird.  It's hard.  It's dreamy.  It's different.  It's interesting.  It's exciting.

The end of today will mark the end of his first week in America.  He landed in Indianapolis at midnight on Saturday, we arrived home around 2am, and a few hours, went to church.  Church -- the people, the music, the pews, the noise, the offering, the clothes, the building, the parking lot -- so different for him!  He was a little overwhelmed [understandably!] after being greeted by family, friends, and pastors that have heard so much about him.  We had lunch with Mom, Dad, and Grandmom, followed by him opening a cellphone for his belated birthday.

Since then, we have been to Wal-Mart twice.  On our second trip, we met "Uncle" Jolly - one of my profs who is conducting our wedding.  From an aisle or two away, Uncle Jolly recognized Titus (he didn't see me!) and called "Titus?!!"  It was a really special SURPRISE, especially since we were just talking about him on our way to Wal-Mart.

It's been really hard to leave him at home while I go to work.  On Monday night, my parents brought Titus to Cracker Barrel while I was waitressing.  Tuesday night, Mom made spaghetti, while I was waitressing again at Cracker Barrel.  Wednesday, we went to my aunt's house and met aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and siblings for the first time.  That was a special memory, and I really can't wait for him to meet Mom's small side of the family!!

On Monday, my friend Renee took amazing engagement pictures of us in downtown Marion.  That was so much fun, and I was surprised to see some previews already online when we got home that afternoon.  Monday was a productive day - we bought Titus' suit for the wedding and his wedding ring.  We ate at Sunrise Asian Grill, which was really good!  On Thursday, we went on our first date to Steak 'N Shake, and then bought pumpkins to carve before meeting the sweet lady who is making our wedding cake.

Now we are in New York spending a day with my twin sister (and best friend.)  Titus' best man also lives only a few minutes away, so we are going to meet them for dinner after visiting the Asian market for Cambodian groceries.

The first week has been so memorable already, and I can't wait for the next few days, weeks, months, and years with Romdenh Chamnol, my sweet husband-to-be!

Love love love,

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Pre- Fiancé Coming to America

I can't remember when I wrote my last blog entry, but I know that it has been a long time.  So much has happened and I wish that I would have had time to write about it.

Some of the very best friends a girl could have threw me a bridal shower at my church last Sunday and it was so special.  I was so touched as each woman and girl around the circle shared how they know me - many for more than 16, 17, or 18 years!  I have gone on trips with many of them, shared a bed with some, worked in the nursery or the kitchen with others... special memories.  Life has changed a lot (I think 'change' is one of the first words that I would attribute to life both present and near future) and I hope and pray that I will be able to keep some of those memories forever.

Other significant events in recent days could include finding our first apartment (after our plans to live in a friend's basement changed,) continuing to work 50-55 hours a week between 3 jobs, Grandmom finally moving home again after three months in the hospital and nursing home, etc.

Titus is on a plane RIGHT NOW somewhere between Seoul, South Korea and Atlanta, Georgia.  We were able to talk a little bit last night during his 12-hour layover in Seoul (thanks to free computers with free wifi!)  He seemed to be doing okay except for the language barrier. He couldn't believe a sandwich and coffee cost him $10. (At some restaurants in Cambodia, 3 or 4 people can eat for $10!)  After a 13.5-hour flight, Titus will land in Atlanta, Georgia.  I sent him a few dollars in quarters, so hopefully he will find a payphone and call me after he goes through customs.

I am so excited for all the special people in my life to finally get to meet him - parents, siblings, grandmom, nieces, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends who are like family, pastors... While I know that going to church tomorrow will be very OVERWHELMING for him, I hope that it will be a special memory for him too.

I'm off now to clean the church, to shower, and to spend my last few hours at home before Titus arrives! I have dreamed of this for months and it's all finally happening... the next chapter of My Fairy Tale Love Life starts in less than EIGHT hours!

Love love love,

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Hello, October!

Pumpkin Fluff Dip

  • 1 (16 ounce) container frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • 1 (5 ounce) package instant vanilla pudding mix
  • 1 (15 ounce) can solid pack pumpkin
  • 1 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (adjust this to how "pumpkiny" you want it)

In a large bowl, mix together instant vanilla pudding mix, pumpkin and pumpkin pie spice. Fold in the thawed frozen whipped topping. Chill in the refrigerator until serving. Serve with ginger snaps, Nilla wafers, cinnamon graham crackers, or apples.

[I apologize for not giving credit to where credit is due, but I can't remember where I found this tasty goodness!]

Love love love,

Monday, September 26, 2011

Piles of Noteworthy Mentions (I would call it a 'list', but it isn't even organized enough to be called one.)

Oh. My. Word. As evidenced by my lack of posts, life has been CRAZY.  I have been working three jobs - about 50-55 hours a week - planning a wedding, and fighting a cold for almost three weeks.  I am sick and tired of being sick and tired!  Wow.

[I wrote that much and a week later finally returned to finish this post. WOW! haha]

Geneva Church of the Nazarene invited me to speak tonight and share about Cambodia.  I fought a terrible terrible migraine all morning and afternoon, and then had to do one of my least favorite things ever (drive at night.. in the rain.. by myself.. for an hour.)  I was not only feeling totally unprepared, but discouraged.  I sent a quick "pray for me!!!" text to a handful of friends and let me tell you: A church of 12 people collected an offering of $160.  I was completely blown away.  That is a testimony to the "God can do immeasurably more than all we can ask or imagine" promise in Ephesians 3:20.  I was sharing this with a friend and she said that this verse has really been HOLDING TRUE in my life recently, and she's totally right.  The last few weeks and maybe even months have not been *easy,* but God has proven Faithful repeatedly and immensely and I really do feel so so so blessed to know, love, and serve Him.

Cracker Barrel has been ROUGH for reasons that I won't discuss on here, but I will say that it is definitely my mission field right now and I believe that God has placed me there for that reason.  I am growing and learning and certainly being challenged -- all a part of preparation for Cambodia.

Although it is draining, I am still *enjoying* my lovely beastly lovely two-year-olds at the pre-school.  Friday was picture day and that was a surprise for me.  [I'm told that there were apparently signs on all the doors, but my head and my mind haven't been in the same place for weeks.]

Titus, MY SWEET HUSBAND-TO-BE, passed his interview at the US Embassy in Cambodia on Tuesday.  PRAISE THE LORD, MY MAN IS COMING TO AMERICA!


However, there is a little bit of a catch.  He was missing a document and has to return to the embassy on Wednesday to submit it.  I had already purchased his tickets for Tuesday, so I had to cancel his flight and I am not sure yet when he will be coming.  After processing this document, it could still take 4-7 days to process his visa.  Please keep praying that this document will be approved.

‎"I am the Lord, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me?"
(Jeremiah 32:27) 
Love love love, Jewel

Monday, September 19, 2011

Please pray for my husband-to-be

Please pray for my husband-to-be today as his very important visa interview is tonight at 8 (IN time.) We are trusting Him!

Friday, September 02, 2011

September 2011's first "Friday's Fave Five"

Log on at Living to Tell the Story and share your own Friday's Fave. Five!

1. A Great Job ♥♥♥
Last Thursday I started working at the daycare and I have absolutely LOVED it!  It has been a joy to earn the trust and love of my two-year-old class and I'm looking forward to getting to know their little personalities more in the weeks and months ahead.  On Thursday I earned M*m*'s trust by cuddling him until his mommy arrived to take him to the hospital to get stitches (he fell out of his chair during snack time :(.)  It was a sad but sweet few minutes.  I also enjoy the head-rubbing and back-patting as my little princes and princesses drift off during nap time.

2. A Precious Gift ♥♥♥
This beautiful elephant brooch is on its way to my house thanks to a sweet and generous ebay seller who calls herself "The Turtle Lady."  Priced at $16.99+shipping, I knew I couldn't afford it for my broach bouquet, so I messaged the seller and she's sending it as a wedding gift!  I'll be cherishing this one in honor of a stranger's kindness, and in memory of my granddad, who passed on a collection of elephants from around the world, and an admiration of the royal animal.  Both these elephants have their trunks up, which is a symbol of "good luck" in many parts of the world.  I just love it and can't wait to see it in person!

3. A Plane Ticket ♥♥♥
I finally bought my fiancé's one-way ticket from Cambodia to Indiana.  He doesn't have his visa yet, but I bought it in FAITH - remembering how God has already been faithful to Titus and I throughout the visa process, believing that He won't stop being faithful, and praying that He will go before Titus to his interview and will provide a visa.  I can't wait to see him in 26 days and marry him in 57!

4. A Farewell Party ♥♥♥
Today is my last day working at the cemetery and it's BITTERSWEET.  I know there will be days at Cracker Barrel and the daycare where I will wish that I was simply behind a desk again.  Yesterday the cemetery staff had a farewell party with a "Good Luck Jewel!" ice cream cake and cards and a gift.  Everyone awkwardly surrounded my desk... and it was touching in a sweet way.  I have grown to really enjoy the company of some of my co-workers, and I'm going to  miss them.

5. A Cousin in Town ♥♥♥
My cousin from Ohio is transferring from a college in Nashville to IWU and she moves in today!!  I'm excited about spending time with her and helping her in any way that I can.  It will also mean that we will be seeing her parents more, and that will also be nice.

Love love love, Jewel

Thursday, September 01, 2011

It's Coming.

I love Summer. I really, really, really love Summer. But, I also enjoy Fall because there are so many things to love about it (despite the fact that it introduces Winter.)

♥The cool (not cold!) autumn breeze flowing through my open windows
♥The smell - cold air has its own smell; it's crisp and clean
♥Hot tea on a cold day
♥The delicacies: Pumpkin pie chai and pumpkin ice cream, apple pie, candy corn and peanuts...
♥The way God paints the yellow, orange, and red landscape in the trees, and the deep blue in the sky
♥Scarves and sweaters
♥The crunching sound of newly fallen leaves beneath my feet as I walk to class in the morning
♥Watching football
♥Cuddling by the fireplace
♥Maple and spiced candles
The Mississinewa 1812 (a weekend-long historical commemoration festival)
♥Looking forward to Christmas

Two more for Fall 2011:
♥My wedding on October 29th
♥My fiancé coming from Cambodia to America (for the first time!)
I haven't seen him since January!!

Can't wait!!

Love love love,

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

immeasurably more

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. [Ephesians 3:20,21]

There is no problem that God cannot solve. None. There is no sickness that God cannot heal. There is no miracle that you can dream of that God cannot perform. There is no prayer that God cannot answer. There is not one sinner that He cannot save. There is no backslider that God cannot bring back and restore. There is no mountain that God cannot move. There is no giant that He cannot slay. There is no need that God cannot meet. There is no marriage so broken that God cannot heal. There is no church so dead that God cannot raise up. You are amazing God, You can do immeasurably more than what we can ask or think.

I can testify.

We can choose to live our lives in the confines of our own natural understanding and perceived limitations, or we can choose to believe what God has promised for us - that He is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine according to His power that is at work within us! Our Father is the biggest, strongest and most powerfully wonderful Dad in the universe and He has promised that He is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, above all that we ask or imagine!

Credit to Pinterest

All powerful, untameable;
Awestruck I fall to my knees as I humbly proclaim
'You are amazing God.'
Indescribable, uncontainable;
You placed the stars in the sky and You know them by name.
You are amazing God!
Incomparable, unchangeable;
You see the depths of my heart and You love me the same.
You are amazing God!
[Indescribable by Chris Tomlin]

Love love love, Jewel

Friday, August 26, 2011

Another Week Passed!

Log on at Living to Tell the Story and share your own Friday's Fave. Five!

1. Lakeview Christian School Daycare ♥♥♥
Last Friday, I told you that I was just hired by Cracker Barrel.  I got another job this week!  On Wednesday morning, I turned in my application at a local daycare and on Wednesday evening, they called me and asked me to start Thursday morning! WOW!  It's been a little confusing/stressful trying to finish my two weeks notice at the cemetery, and start at the daycare, and arrange training at Cracker Barrel, while meanwhile being a church janitor. HA. BUT, I feel blessed to have three GOOD jobs.  I really really really loved the daycare yesterday. 19 2-year-olds on my first day was a little overwhelming, but I enjoyed the cuddling, the head-rubbing and back-patting during naptime, and the one-last-hug goodbyes.

2. Untitled Hymn (Come To Jesus) by Chris Rice ♥♥♥

Weak and wounded sinner, lost and left to die, o raise your head, for love is passing by. Come to Jesus! Come to Jesus and live!
Now your burden's lifted and carried far away; and precious blood has washed away the stain, so... sing to Jesus! Sing to Jesus and live!
And like a newborn baby, don't be afraid to crawl; and remember when you walk, sometimes we fall... so fall on Jesus! Fall on Jesus and live!
Sometimes the way is lonely and steep and filled with pain; so if your sky is dark and pours the rain, then... cry to Jesus. Cry to Jesus and live!
O, and when the love spills over and music fills the night; and when you can't contain your joy inside, then... dance for Jesus. Dance for Jesus and live!
And with your final heartbeat, kiss the world goodbye. Then go in peace, and laugh on Glory's side... and fly to Jesus! Fly to Jesus and live!

3. I Shot a Gun ♥♥♥
On Wednesday night, my college/young adult destination unknown group had a time of "personal and gun safety" and a local police officer came to advice the new college freshman on personal safety.  Marion isn't quite like Noblesville or Gary or Indianapolis, Indiana; but it isn't quite like Mayberry either.  So it was a good idea! After the talk, we went into outside to shoot real guns. I was nervous... pretty nervous, but I thought, "Go big or go home!"  So I shot the shotgun! TWICE!  *Crossing "shoot a gun" off my bucketlist! :)

4. Bangs... ♥♥♥
I got these yesterday. I haven't had a drastic hair change (if you can consider going from 'no bangs' to 'bangs') since I was probably 17, but I decided it was TIME.  I also really needed a trim - hoping it will speed up some hair growth (which is almost a foreign idea to me, despite how quickly my twin sister's hair grows!) before my wedding in only 64 (SIXTY-FOUR!) days.

5. Girls' Night ♥♥♥
I'm really looking forward to a much-needed, very fun girls' night tonight.  More tissue paper pomanders, more scones, more laughs, more memories, and who knows what else!  My fiancé could be arriving in America one month from today and I'm wanting to spend much time with my girls AND get most of the wedding things pulled together before he comes!

Love love love, Jewel

Thursday, August 25, 2011

How to Make the Bed Unto the Lord:

I heard a convo on the radio a few weeks ago about making the bed unto the Lord and I have not forgotten it.  I have thought about it a lot in the last two weeks as I have been cleaning our church building.  If God has given me the assignment to clean His house, I'm going to let no streak remain on the windows, no stickiness cling to the trash cans, no scuff mark lie on the floor, no ink or dye stain the chairs, etc.  The perspective of working unto the Lord has almost blown away my mind.  I forget about ME.  I remember Something bigger.

"Whatever may be your task, work at it heartily (from the soul), as [something done] for the Lord and not for men, knowing [with all certainty] that it is from the Lord [and not from men] that you will receive the inheritance which is your [real] reward. [The One Whom] you are actually serving [is] the Lord Christ (the Messiah)."
Colossians 3:23,24 (AMF)

It's not about perfection, it's about excellence. There's no bondage in it, there is freedom in it - it's about fulfilling the excellence He called you to.

Do Everything by Steven Curtis Chapman:

The way we do our work day by day provides the best exterior reflection of our commitment to serve the Lord in a real, physical way. It doesn't matter whether that work is in the home, in a corporate office, on the mission field, or in the janitor's closet.  May my clean carpets, vents, stairs, shelves, whiteboards, tables, podiums, chairs, toilets, urinals, sinks, mirrors, doorknobs, and windows be a testimony of my love for the Lord.

Love love love,

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


Contemplating and meditating on these two verses today:

"If you want to think one year ahead, plant rice.
If you want to think 10 years ahead, plant trees. 
But if you want to think 100 years ahead, give education to people."
[Ancient Chinese Proverb]

"How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in?
And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard?
And how can they hear without someone preaching to them?"
[Romans 10:14 NIV]

Love love love, Jewel

Monday, August 22, 2011

A Bible That’s Falling Apart

Struck by the truth of this quote by Charles Spurgeon...

A Bible that’s falling apart
usually belongs to someone who isn’t.

...and thinking of my Grandmom, who is a timeless example of a God-fearing, Bible-reading, praying woman.

Love love love,

Friday, August 19, 2011

All Good Things!

Log on at Living to Tell the Story and share your own Friday's Fave. Five!

1. Cracker Barrel ♥♥♥
Yesterday morning, I was hired to be a server at Cracker Barrel - one of my favorite restaurants in the whole world!  I have never worked in food, so I am a little nervous about training, but so EXCITED to start something new and make a little more money! [And seriously, I have had enough job interviews for awhile! 5 in 7 days!]
My supervisor at current job in the cemetery has been so so so good to me as I have been on the job search - totally understanding and allowing me to take extra long lunch breaks for interviews; I am very GRATEFUL for that!

2. Honeymoon ♥♥♥

I finally planned my honeymoon - booking a condo ON Daytona Beach. So excited to relax on the beach with my groom!  We are only about 1 ½ hours from Orlando, so we are planning on visiting Disney World one day. For those who have an opinion, should we go to Magic Kingdom or Epcot?  The "cultural village" idea would be very interesting for us both (since I'm American and he's Cambodian!) but I would also love the enchantment and fireworks at Magic Kingdom. Hmm...

3. ♥♥♥
Two years ago, I discovered the goodness of and I have saved lots of money buying my textbooks online, and also made lots of money selling my textbooks online.  With the start of universities quickly approaching, our (Mom's, Jessie's, and mine) used textbooks have really been selling.  In August alone, we have made $911.70!! And that's after ebay took 10% sales commission.  SERIOUSLY INCREDIBLE.  Let me know if you want me to teach you how; I would be glad to share the secret! It's super easy; the hardest part is getting to the post office!

4. Good Deals at Goodwill
Dear Goodwill,
          Thank you for three pairs of Docker pants for $11! I can't wait to wear them to my new job.
Someone Satisfied

5. Wedding Planning Progress
Mom and I went to the craft store on Wednesday and bought ribbon, string, and tulle for 20% OFF.  I also collected lots of sticks in the yard from a recent storm. One of my ushers has agreed to be an usher, my pianist has agreed to be my pianist, and another friend has agreed to help me make something like this 'S' [<---] as an alternative guest book (which I am super excited about!!)  I got an antique family heirloom from my grandmom to collect our cards in, and I have been looking at pictures of dessert receptions on pinterest and getting lots of yummy and gorgeous ideas!

Love love love, Jewel

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Because you only have 4 years,

Reposting this:

I have finally graduated and my college career is over for good. When I was told, "Enjoy it; it will go by fast," I thought, "Yeah right, four years is a long time." I admit - it went by fast. I really cannot even believe it. I vividly remember moving in as a freshman, meeting my roommate, going to my first class, and starting my job on campus. Now it's four years later and I have learned so so so much. There are certainly things that I wish I had done or known earlier, and I would regret it if I didn't pass on a few words of advice to my friends who are still in college or are preparing to start this Fall. So, here's to YOU!

Campus Activities and Involvement:
- Try everything at least once - Crema, Exalt, FNL, prayer walks, the homecoming parade, basketball games, soccer games, etc.
- Look into student organizations that interest you - Business as Mission, WCF, etc.
- If you loved NSO, apply to be an NSO leader.
- Participate in the Finals Midnight Scream (hopefully that tradition carries on!)
- Mentor a child through the Marion Boys and Girls Club.
- When the weather is nice, don't stay inside.

Interaction and Relationships:
- Interact with your professors outside of the classroom. Your professors are an incredible resource and will completely change your entire college experience [for the better] if you let them.
- Don't spend hours chatting on facebook when you can be chatting at McConn or by the fountain.
- You will find community on IWU's campus when you look for it.
- Don't be too busy, bored, or conceited to listen when people are imparting words of wisdom. Listen when people are talking!!

Classes, Books and Studying:
- NEVER buy brand new textbooks and never buy without comparing prices. I have saved $100's by purchasing my books on Ebay and Amazon.
- Sometimes you can get by simply skimming or not reading a book... sometimes you cannot! Figure it out.
- The Bible is the most important book you can read. It offers incredible amounts of wisdom and insight.
- World Civ with Mark Smith is the way to go!
- If you can, take the following classes:
* Basic Christian Doctrine (Chris Bounds)
* Christian Spirituality and Experiencing God (Jim Lo)
* CS Lewis (Charles Bressler)
* Inductive Bible Study (Steve Lennox)
- For INT majors, take more Biblical literature classes than what is required. If you plan to be a missionary, you must know Scripture and know it well.
- Don't be stupid and save all your research and projects until the end of the semester or just before it's due.

Other: (These may be what I would emphasize the most!)
- Realize that your education is a huge investment into your future, but realize also that your grades and performance do not define who you are. Who you are becoming is worth more than your diploma.
- Make a college bucket list and re-evaluate it at the beginning of every semester. Four years will pass quickly, and you will never get to experience anything like college ever again.
- Take pictures of everything.
- If you have an idea or a dream, share it with someone and pursue it!
- Your legacy is more in who you are than in what you do.
- Above all, God is faithful. Seek His will and trust Him.

Love love love,

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

A Magical Place

Last night, my mom and I sat down to plan my honeymoon.  It was an EXPERIENCE!  My parents have a timeshare (that we have been trying to sell for months and months and months!) and Mom and I spent hours on the RCI website last night looking at the few still available resorts in Florida - North, East, South, West, and the Panhandle.  Many had pictures that left much to be desired, others had beautiful pictures of gorgeous rooms, views, and property, but reviews included statements such as:

  • "I couldn't turn on the kitchen light because the switch was behind the refrigerator."
  • "If I were you, I wouldn't walk barefoot on the carpet..."
  • "When we arrived, we found cigarettes in the ashtray, dirty glasses, and dirty linens." 
  • "We couldn't sit around the pigeons on the balcony or through the pigeon poop on the already dirty window."
  • "When you're sitting on the toilet, the sink stabs you in the side."
  • "If you are looking for something nice, run in the other direction!"

YUCK!  My living standards are not extremely high, but I am not wanting to spend the first few days of my happily-ever-after in anything like what is reviewed above.  So it took some searching.  My only expectations were:

Finding a honeymoon spot where we can visit:
Disney World
and spend our days here:
The Beach
We finally found one that I expect won't be too cramped or gross.  I'm looking forward to having coffee and conversations on our own personal ocean-view balcony (hopefully not on the 1st floor,) taking early morning and late night walks on the beach, playing Scrabble on our little table, and exploring Daytona as husband and wife.

When my sister and I were maybe four-years-old, our parents took us to Magic Kingdom and it rained some before the day ended with a horrible storm.  I haven't been back since, and I have never been to (or heard much about) Epcot.  For those who have been to either or both, which would you recommend for two twenty-something newlyweds??  I'm leaning towards one, but I really want to know what others say, so thanks for advising!!

Magic Kingdom
Magic Kingdom: Enchanting entertainment, classic attractions, beloved Disney Characters and spectacular parades and fireworks in a place where fairytale dreams can come true.


Epcot: Attractions and entertainment dedicated to technological innovation and the culture and cuisine of 11 nations.
Love love love,

Friday, August 12, 2011

Lots of Excitement This Week

Log on at Living to Tell the Story and share your own Friday's Fave. Five!  You will notice that I had a very exciting and eventful week and I couldn't limit myself to only five points; I limited myself to six....

1. Church Janitor
I was recently hired onto the janitorial staff at my church and I started on Sunday.  I can't brag about working in a cemetery or being a church janitor, but I am content.  I don't enjoy scrubbing toilets (or especially urinals! Seriously guys?? How can you accidentally pee on the wall??) but I do enjoy praying for my church family during the still and quiet hours in the basement. [And by the way, I couldn't ask for a better church family!]  ♥♥♥

2. Phillip James Stuller III
On Monday, my funny and beautiful friend (and bridesmaid) Stephanie had her precious baby boy.  Welcome to the world PJ!  I can't wait to cuddle you!!!  ♥♥♥

3. Visa Interview
After 8 months of filling out documents, and waiting and praying, and filling out documents, and waiting and praying, and filling out documents, and waiting and praying, Titus has finally received his interview date and time for his interview at the US Embassy in Phnom Penh. On September 20th at 7am (that's September 19th at 7pm, for all you Indiana and EST people,) my fiancé will stand before an authority and be interviewed in regards to gaining legal status to enter the United States and marry the love of his life. September 20th is farther away than we had hoped, but we are trusting in God's PERFECT TIMING, and we are grateful for a few more days to humble ourselves before the LORD, and ask Him to prepare the way and go before Titus to his interview.  ♥♥♥

4. Bridesmaids Shoes
Five pairs of these shoes landed on my porch Tuesday! After spending about 30 hours browsing 30 websites and looking at about 30,000 different pairs of shoes, I finally settled on the above pair of Old Navy sandals for my bridesmaids.  One of my wedding colors is bronze, and since pewter is NOT BRONZE, I am going to dig into my *Barney Bag* of creativity, and embellish them.  Look forward to before and after pictures!  ♥♥♥

5. DIY Tissue Paper Pomanders
On Thursday, 80 sheets of green and bronze tissue paper landed in my mailbox.  Once all my sweet ad wonderful crafty friends return from vacay, we are going to have a party and make tissue paper pomanders to decorate the pews and aisle at my wedding. Look forward to before and after pictures! Pretty pretty pretty... ♥♥♥

6. Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred
Also on Thursday, I received a MUCH-ANTICIPATED and MUCH-FEARED package in the mail from a kind member of ebay.  I cannot [and won't] tell you how many days it has been since I last exercised.  I have been dieting, but not exercising, and my dress-fitting is quickly approaching (in 33 days, to be exact.) Since becoming a full-time 8-5 employee at the cemetery, I have found it to be quite inconvenient to go to the gym or to Zumba class after work. SO, I'm hoping this at-home DVD routine will prove successful and motivational.  Let me tell you: day 1 and day 2 were ROUGH! ♥♥♥

Love love love, Jewel