Sunday, January 20, 2008

A cabinet and a chest

(This is a long one...just to warn ya!)
I'm still in the midst of cleaning out my room. This weekend, I tackled my filing cabinet and my hope chest. We'll start with the filing cabinet.

My file cabinet contained every pay stub, credit card statement, utility bill, bank statement, major receipts, and basically any other piece of paper that I thought was required to keep. My dad enlightened me that all of that is really NOT necessary.

So, in my quest to clean things out and simplify things, I wanted to get rid of all that paperwork I didn't need. The problem is all this paperwork dates back to 1995! Yes, that's 18 years worth of documents!! Thankfully, my dad had gotten all of us kids a shredder a few years ago for Christmas. (He always taught us shred or rip up anything with an acct. number on it.)

I took my little shredder upstairs and got to work. I filled up the bucket a couple of times, and my poor shredder started to wear down. It started to make that sound a car might make as the engine's trying to turn over. The motor was overheating, so I let her rest a little bit.

The problem was that I had barely made a dent in my HUGE pile and I knew there was no way little shredder was going to shred the mound I had created. She needed backup.

So I went to Office Depot to recruit a backup.

This bad boy can shred credit cards AND CD's/DVD's! So, I paired them up and while one was cooling down the other was busy shreddin' up my history!

Right now, I've taken a break to let the tag team cool down and so I could watch the season finale of The Amazing Race (which I'm sure Amanda hasn't watched yet!)

OK...now to the hope chest.

You could say I'm quite a pack rat. (As evidenced by the 18 years worth of paperwork! ) Not the sad, pitiful kind that buy stuff off theHome Shopping Network and leave it laying around everywhere. Or like this woman on Oprah who had created small paths throughout her house because she had so much junk!

My "collection" of stuff is more sentimental stuff: movie ticket stubs, name tags from different events I've been a part of, trinkets from other countries, notes from friends, etc. Well, cleaning out my hope chest was a walk down memory lane! In cleaning it out, it was SO much fun to go back to those times of being a naive, oblivious-to-the-world teenager.

It also made me so extremely grateful because I have been incredibly blessed. I really feel that God has spoiled me in my life with wonderful friends. And I've kind of arranged those friends in groups:

1. Youth Group/Church Friends

I was very involved in my youth group. I was at every event, every Wednesday night, every fundraiser...you name it, I went to it. We always had something planned. There were 2 main trips we took every year: a mission trip and a back-to-school retreat. At each one of those trips, we always had these posterboard cutouts. They hung up the whole trip and during any free time, we could write little notes of encouragements on other people's template. It was a great keepsake from the trip. They were cut in the shape of a symbol that represented our theme for that trip: "Walkin' in the Light"-a footprint; "Carry the Torch"-a torch; "Heart to Change the World"-a heart...you get the picture. We would pour out our souls on those things! I loved going back and reading them and it was always a boost of encouragement when ya needed it.
Those were my closest friends! Some of them I haven't seen or talked to in years, but when I do run across them, we pick right back up and share stories of the good times. A few of them, I see on a regular basis and keep in close touch with them. They add such fulfillment to my life that I can't imagine my life without them!

2. The M&M Puppet Team

Yes, I was on a puppet team. And not just any puppet team, the M&M Puppet team. The award winning M&M Puppet Team! I loved my time on the puppet team. It took me all over and was a great tool to share the love of Christ with people in other countries. I also learned an invaluable skill. You work through different levels until you complete the master puppeteer level (the same level as Jim Henson).
The puppet team was a HUGE part of my life. I was completely devoted to it and our team had such a comraderie. We just celebrated our20 year reunion and it was such a special time.

3. Sigma Nu Sigma (my sorority)

I went to Lee University which is a small private Christian school in Cleveland, TN. I absolutely loved my time at Lee. I met some wonderful people who have changed my life for the better.
One of the best parts of Lee was my time in my sorority Sigma Nu Sigma. You get really close to people when they put you through induction. Those girls were a group of people who I could constantly count on. We laughed and cried together. They truly became like family to me. My roommate, Amber, was one of those girls :)

This was me getting tapped. It was a very "pomp and circumstance" moment!

This was my tap (all the girls that got in with me). This was us AFTER our weekend of induction and we were officially sworn into the sorority.

4. Camp Rocks

Camp Rocks is a camp I help direct with my friend Cindy. I've gone to camp since I was in grade school. It was something I looked forward to every year, so as soon I was old enough to serve on staff, I did and have been ever since.
It's a TON of work getting it all together, but so rewarding once you get there. At camp, all the staff go by bird names based on this verse. My bird name is Daisy (as in Daisy Duck) so I've got a lot of little doo-dads with Daisy on it.
I love working at camp because of the sense of family we develop. Living with people for a week really brings you together!

So at the end of cleaning out my hope chest, I felt very blessed and satisfied at all the good stuff my life.

Now I'm going back upstairs to continue shredding :) Thanks for staying till the end of this post :)

Oh...just for fun, here's some old pictures I found in my hope chest:



7 comments:

dcrmom said...

That looks like a productive day. Love your sorority pictures. I went to a school with no Greek life, but I always thought it looked like fun.

mandi said...

Talk about a trip down memory lane. I know you put me up to the one next to the fake tree:)

oh amanda said...

I have those same pics of us at the High School. We were so cute!

And my 16th birthday. HOT!

Jessica said...

Your dad sounds so much like my dad! : )

Kat said...

What sweet memories! You are awesome to do all of that cleaning out! Too much work!

Jessica said...

Augusta

Cindy said...

Staci-
I have gotten so behind on blog reading lately (a little thing called ministry and a new job!)- but I loved reading this post so much. It was a trip down Memory Lane for me too. You didn't shred all the things you took pictures of, did you??
Love you.

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