Hollison Journey

“The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination.” – Don Williams Jr

Thirty One.

On Saturday, I turned another year older. Returning to a semi-tradition (meaning some years I do and some years I don’t), I wrote birthday resolutions. Below the resolutions are pics of the celebrations!

1. Ask what God wants and say “yes” to it. Too often I make my own plans, and am surprised when they fail miserably. This year I want to spend less time planning and more time asking God what the plan is. Of course, I have to follow the plan in order for it to work.

2. Read more. Each month I want to read at least 1 spiritual book and 1 book of choice. I try to read a lot, but I also watch a lot of Netflix/Hulu. Goals are good 🙂

3. More service. Whether it’s scheduled community service or random acts of kindness, I want to do more.

4. Make a silent retreat. Silent retreats are my “restart” button. I want to take the time and spend the money and make sure I connect with that.

5. Save more money. Self-explanatory.

6. Live simply. I want to cut out clutter and excess.

And now, my birthday weekend in pictures!










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Hey, it’s a blog post! Not because I have anything worthy to say, but because I am procrastinating from cleaning. I was even gifted with an additional hour tonight and I STILL have not started cleaning.

I was productive though. I finished addressing almost all of my Christmas cards – just need a few more addresses, but I’ll be sending out what I have tomorrow. Christmas cards when you are single are weird. I tell myself every year that next year I’ll come up with some cute, awesome, totally-not-lame creative Christmas card. And every year, I buy a box of cards from Wal-Mart. Sigh. But I like sending Christmas cards. And receiving Christmas cards.

Today is December 11 and so far I have two Christmas decorations up. And one really shouldn’t count since all I did was hang a sign on a nail that was already there (I took down a clock that stopped working a while ago.) I tell myself that I am doing it slowly to savor the season, but in reality it is because I don’t want to bring out the Christmas stuff until I have cleaned, which brings us back to the word of the day, procrastination.

Once I have my decor out, I think I want to do a blog series on it. I like my Christmas stuff and some of it is pretty cool. Plus, I love seeing everyone else’s stuff, so I figure others like that too.

I’m in technology purgatory. A couple of weeks ago, my laptop decided it had had enough and refused to turn on beyond the startup screen. The good news is that my pics and music are on an external hard drive (best $75 spent ever). So, because I couldn’t stand being without something, and I’d been debating tablets for forever, I bought an iPad. I really like it, but there are still a few things it can not do. Now, the purgatory part is that some of this would be solved if I had an iPhone, but I have an Android and am not due for an upgrade until January 1, plus I’ve been pretty iPhone-resistant until now. Knowing that the iPad and iPhone would “play well together” is making me lean toward the iPhone, plus the fact that my Android has decided that battery life is no longer a priority. Since man can not live on phone and tablet alone, the laptop issue comes up too. Apple is a downward spiral of beautifulness, so of course, I’m drawn to Mac books. I haven’t used an Apple computer since my yearbook days, but darn it if I’m not considering it. Of course, my wallet would prefer something MUCH cheaper. I’ve never cared about this kind of stuff and now I find myself caring and that is driving me crazy.

Is that enough randomness for one post? I think I’ll go clean. Or, more likely, go browse Pinterest and Wikipedia until I fall asleep, then wake up tomorrow regretting that I wasted a night on the Internet.

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What A Beautiful Life

A lot of people on Facebook have been doing the “30 Days of Thanks” thing. While I enjoy it, I don’t usually participate. That doesn’t mean I am not thankful. Here are a couple of things I am thankful for right now:

* My faith. I attended a retreat this weekend that renewed and re-invigorated me. I love my Church and my community.

* Friends. Throughout this weekend I got to be with several friends, some I’ve known for years (10!) and some I’m just starting to know. All are good people striving to do good things. It is fantastic to be surrounded by so many wonderful people.

* Family. Of course I’m thankful for them. Even though we’ll probably drive each other crazy this weekend, I wouldn’t trade them. Besides, crazy things always happen and as my Dad says, you can’t make this stuff up.

* The State of Texas. If you think it’s weird to be thankful for a state, it’s because you don’t live here. Today felt like a lovely spring day.- and yes, it’s November (somebody remind me I said this in July when I curse the sun for boiling me). Besides, we’re home to Dr Pepper, Whataburger, and other cool things.

* Puns. My favorite of the moment: In queso emergency, find local Tex Mex restaurant. Also: what does a nosy pepper do? Get jalapeño business.

* Technology. I have crossed to the dark side. When my laptop died Sunday (not sure if it can be resurrected), I got an iPad. 48 hours later and I am in love. It’s a gateway, too. I’m thinking about getting an iPhone when my next discount kicks in, something I would not have done until, oh, now.

* Books. I love a good book! Recently, my cousin loaned me a Christian love series (not romance really, but about love) based in West Texas that has me dreaming of the High Plains and cowboys. I’ve also been reading a Christian trilogy about three sisters who find God and love. They may be fluffy, but I like fluff 🙂

* Finally, for now, I’ll say music. I found some old CDs the other day and listening to them has been like talking to an old friend.

Peace out and y’all have a happy Thanksgiving!

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7 Quick Takes

It’s another lunch break post. Here we go!

1. Wednesday night, I slept 12 hours. It was glorious.

2. Last weekend, my cousin came up from Houston and we (along with my sister) had a girls weekend that included movies, shopping, football, dinner with other cousins, Mimosas, sausage rolls and other fun things. Love my family.

3. Tomorrow I’m giving a talk about something I’m very passionate about: my faith. My talk keeps changing and evolving (pretty standard for me), so we’ll see what I end up with.

4. Last month was 2 years at my job, which is officially the longest I’ve been somewhere. I did a lot of bouncing around after college, I’m glad to have settled for now.

5. Have you seen Pitch Perfect yet? So good. Well, I’ll say this, if you liked Bridesmaids, you’ll like it. It’s not as gross as Bridesmaids is. (that’s a plus in my book, in case you were wondering)

6. I can’t believe I am about to talk about the weather, but man Texas, get it together. The high on Sunday is supposed to be 81. Monday? 53. MAKE UP YOUR MIND! Here, let me help. 65-70, with a breeze. Low 60s at night. Boom, you’re welcome.

7. I’ll end with something better. I made delicious hawaiian chicken this week. I’ll post the link later, but it’s basically 4-5 chicken breasts, a bottle of BBQ sauce and a can of pineapple tidbits in the slow cooker on high for 3 hours. Shred it when done. I put mine on King’s Hawaiian Hamburger buns (so excited when I saw those! And hot dug buns). Delish!

Now, go see Jennifer at http://www.conversiondiary.com

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The Best of Intentions

I had every intention of participating in 7 QT’s on Friday. No, really, I did. I had my 7 things written down and I was going to have pictures and links and everything. It was going to be snazzy. I was going to go home after work and post.

Then my sister texted me at 4pm and invited me over to the house she was house-sitting at. I was already planning to go over there Saturday, so starting early sounded good to me. I packed my laptop, fully intending to blog there. But once there, I ate Irish Nachos (potato slices covered in cheese, onions and other delicious things) and watched episodes of Gilmore Girls we’ve seen a million times.

No worries though, I’ll just post Saturday right? Or, I’ll watch MORE episodes of Gilmore Girls until the Texas Tech game, at which point I will be completely engrossed in yelling at the commentators, griping at the TCU coach and jumping up and down during all three overtime periods (Wildcat fakeout? OMG!) Once the game ended, Sara and I went to her favorite watering hole and waited for our dad and his friend, who went to the game, to come so we could re-hash the game until it was time to head back and you guessed it, more Gilmore Girls.

Sunday turned into a very productive day, cleaning, cleaning, church, cleaning, and more cleaning. If it wasn’t for all the laundry, I’d be done.

And that leads me to now, posting this blog from the break room on my lunch break via my phone. Where’s my list? On my kitchen counter. The good news is, most of the items I listed can (and will) turn into blog posts. I just may start scheduling them in WordPress instead of assuming my schedule will stay normal.

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7 Quick Takes: Last minute

Here we go!

1. This post is coming to you from my childhood bedroom. I’m at my parents house tonight and tomorrow. My old room is definitely not a shrine, but it still has some Holly touches. At least this weekend my sister didn’t steal it from me.

2. Earlier tonight I had dinner with my grandmother (Nanny). Well, sort of. It’s a long story, but it boils down to: she’s crazy. Not cuckoo crazy, but silly crazy. It’s nice having her in Dallas now – much closer to her antics. If you need entertainment, I’ve got it. “Dinner and a show” as Sara and I tend to say.

3. Things I Learned About at Work This Week: Asian cockroaches. German cockroaches. Try not to be jealous.

4. I’m at my parents to watch college football tomorrow, as I do not have cable and none of the standard channels come in very well. We’ll be watching the OU/UT game (and hoping that somehow they both lose) and the Tech/WVU game (praying for a miracle).

5. I’ve been catching up on tv this week (God bless you, Hulu) and am rekindling my love for The Voice. That show is so good. I was never an AI fan, but I love The Voice. It does not hurt that Adam Levine is funny, charming, and hot.

6. I’m also enjoying the new show “Go On.” I’m a sucker for Matthew Perry to begin with, so combining him with sports, laughter, and quirky is awesome.

7. I finished reading Harry Potter one, maybe two, weeks ago. Now on to a movie marathon. YESSSSS!!!!


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7 Quick Takes: A Day Late and A Couple Dollars Short

Charlene told me I have to blog, so here I am. I was going to write this last night after work. I really was! But then, well, let’s move on to number 1.

1. Rangers. Oh, my sweet Rangers. I would have laughed at you if you told me in April or May that they weren’t going to go all the way this year. Even after a bad June/July, they seemed to be hanging on. But these past few weeks, brutal. I went to last Tuesday’s game and experienced my first loss of the season. Then I went to Sunday’s game and held out some hope, despite a loss. Wednesday I left work and went to Applebee’s to watch the end of the game (no cable) and saw them implode and let the AL West fall out of their grasp. But there was still the Wild Card slot, and when Amy texted me yesterday at 2pm to say she had just bought tickets, did I want to go? My answer was a resounding YES. I’m glad I was there, but sad the season is over. The players actually weren’t the biggest disappointment to me last night. Some of the fans were. You know what, that’s gong to be the next item.

2. Most of the fans last night were great. But some, oh some. The Rangers had a great season, even if it didn’t end they way we wanted. Some fans last night were boo-ing our own players (unacceptable), left early (way to show your support), and I heard a few clapping when the O’s player was hit by a pitch. Not when he stood up and walked to 1st base and they clapped to show support of him being ok, they clapped when he went down. I don’t care who it is, you don’t celebrate an injury. The leaving early bothers me the least because some people may have legitimate reason to leave, but the boo-ing, etc annoyed me greatly. We need more good sports in this world.

3. In other news, my new-to-me car is great! So nice to have a quiet ride and not make noises when shifting gears, braking, etc. Oh, and to have a door handle that isn’t broken. And no lights on on the dash. So nice. But the best thing about it is:

4. XM Radio. It’s a long story, but I have it 3 month free. I so love it. I haven’t even explored all the channels, but 90s on 9 is fantastic. How did I live without this?

5. My social calendar has picked up considerably recently which is a good thing. I kept a low profile last year, which is good, but I enjoy being with friends far too much to keep that up too long. I’ve even made some recent new friends. It sounds silly, but I think it can be a challenge to meet new people when you get older. Especially if you’re not married and don’t have kids. All those common bonds that make playdates and Mom groups work don’t happen if you’re not a Mom. Not that it’s impossible, it just creates its own challenges. The single life isn’t always glamorous, in fact I’d say it rarely is.

6. One of the events I went to recently was a Strengthsfinder retreat. I’ve done one previously (here and here), so it was interesting to go through it again and find some new strengths and how they are applying to my life now. For the record, this time around I was Maximizer, Relator, Achiever, Communication and Learner.

7.  I think I’ve mentioned before what a t.v. addict I am. Some recent shows I’ve watched via Netflix and Hulu: Scandal, Go On, Make It or Break It, and last season’s The Office. Up next: Friday Night Lights and Once Upon a Time.

go to Conversion Diary to see more quick takes

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7 Quick Takes…about nothing in particular

Hidy Ho Neighbor!

This weeks 7 QT has no theme. Just bits of randomness. Pretty much my life.

1. Last weekend was a lot of fun. The sister and I  had a lot of fun in Lubbock and got to see Tech dominate the Lobos. We ate lots of good food, saw good friends and even did a painting (shout out to Painting With A Twist Lubbock!) of a famous Tech landmark. Good, good times. Even though my grandmother no longer lives there, I am glad I still have friends out there – gives me an excuse to go back!

2. This weekend will be dedicated to Fall Cleaning. What’s Fall Cleaning? Spring Cleaning for procrastinators. Actually, it just means I need to clean my apartment. And tomorrow is the first official day of Fall, so even though it will be 95 degrees, Fall Cleaning. Whatever. Either way, my apartment is a disaster zone and I hope that by Monday, it will not be. Let me tell you, it is super easy to let things go when you are the only one who sees it. Not that I like it messy, I’m just not quite as motivate as I was when I had a roommate.

3. This week, I decided to re-read the Harry Potter series. I don’t know that I’ve read all 7 books one right after another. I think I started reading them when the fourth or so book came out, so I read all those close together, but the others I read when they came out, and then re-read just before each movie came out. Anyway, I’m already excited about it because a) I love those books and b) I’m only in book 2 and I can already see where things are being set up for later. I love when authors (or tv/movie writers) do that.

4. My favorite app right now is Instagram. I so love taking pictures and then seeing other people’s pictures.If you want to follow me, I’m @hollyberry402. I promise, no duck face pics. Unless it’s the face of an actual duck.

5. Speaking of apps, I’m considering a new phone. I have an almost 2-year -old HTC Evo 4G and I feel like it’s losing battery power more and more these days. Plus, it’s almost out of storage space. Plus every now and then it does crazy things that drive me batty – like completely lock up so I can access nothing, usually right when I need to make a call. Don’t tell me to turn off Wifi and 4G or to download Task killer or adjust my brightness or any of those other tips that you can easily find by googling. I already do all of that. I think it just can’t handle new stuff as well as it did in the beginning. The iPhone 5 came out today, and I’m debating it, but I do love Androids (and the bigger screen), so I need to do more research

6. There are several food items that I can’t stand an yet everyone else thinks are the best thing God ever created. Examples: Avocado, Hummus, Fruit cereals (like Fruit Loops, Fruity Pebbles, Trix, etc. Special K Red Berries is delicious). Don’t even try to change my mind on these. I have tried them all multiple times in an attempt to like them. No use. Avocado makes me gag and want to vomit, even just the smell of it. In any form. Which makes it hard for me to like sushi, since every time I see sushi, there is piece of green grossness in it. Hummus is a texture/taste thing. I don’t like the texture (usually grainy to me), but even if it was super smooth, it stills tastes like sand to me. And those fruit cereals are gross. I’m  not a big fan of many artificial fruit flavorings to begin with, but those 3 cereals take the cake. Yes I know, I’m weird.

7. The thing I’m most excited about right now is that before the Fall Cleaning begins, I get to go see a brand new baby! Two of my childhood friends got married a few years back and their first son was born yesterday. Love newborns. All cute and little and perfect.


If you want more quick takes, hop on over to Conversion Diary!

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7 QT About the L-B-K

As I write this (and I use the term write very loosely since I’m tapping/swypeing this out on my phone), I am in a car with my sister headed to Lubbock. We’re going to the TTU vs New Mexico game tomorrow and to soak up some West Texas goodness.

Lubbock is an underappreciated city. Some people don’t like it. Most people think they wouldn’t like it. I love it. I’ve been making the trip to Lubbock my whole life to see my grandmother, and then I lived there while in college. I liked it so much, I stayed a year after I graduated.

What’s there to love? Glad you asked. I’m dedicating my 7 Quick Takes to my second home.

1. Campus. Texas Tech campus is beautiful. Go google image it if you don’t believe me. Spanish architecture, beautiful landscaping. It’s an oasis. From the historic quad to the new BA building, everything is cohesive. Plus the traditions. Plus the game day atmosphere. Chills.

2. Food. I had to group this together, otherwise it would be this whole list. Lubbock has a lot of restaurants and so many are so good. This weekend I’m introducing my sister to Spanky’s and Bless Your Heart. But there is also Orlando’s, Gardski’s, 50 Yard Line, Josie’s, Stella’s, and more. I’m sure I’ve forgotten some.

3. The people. West Texans are some of the friendliest people ever. Every shop owner, every stranger is warm, smiling and friendly. They make a city of 275,000 + feel like a small town.

4. Weather. Call me crazy, but the best Texas summers are in Lubbock. Hot days, cool nights. I can tolerate 100 degree days when it drops to 70/80 once the sun goes down. The random dust storms and mud rain? Well, that’s just quirky. Bonus: gorgeous sunsets and sunrises.

5. Music. Yes, Lubbock has music. Haven’t you ever heard of Buddy Holly? Really, it’s the celebration of music that I love. The Buddy Holly Center is great and the Depot District has great places to have a drink and listen to local music.

6. Wineries. Lubbock has several wineries and they are fun to visit and taste test some samples. Tech even has a degree program for people to make wines(I forget the actual name).

7. Stars and Stripes. Remember those cool nights I talked about? Nothing is better than going to Star and Stripes Drive in on a cool night and seeing 2 movies for $7. Such a fun night.

Honorable mention goes to United, Science Spectrum, Windmill Museum, and the Tech Museum.


7 Quick Takes: Friday Faves

I had forgotten about 7 Quick Takes until I read Kristina’s blog. I’m going to combine them with Friday Faves. Here we go!

1. My almost car. It’s a long, long, l-o-o-o ng story, but really soon, I get my dad’s car since mine is falling apart. This week, I get to drive it and I love it. I forgot what it is like to drive a quiet car (mine sounds like a tank driving over legos.) And it has satellite radio – holla! Love me some 90s on 9!

2. Contacts. I had to take a 6 week break from contacts, but I am finally back in them. Love. I can’t stand my glasses. Actually, I’d prefer to do Lasik, but until I win the lotto or something, contacts will do.

3. College Football. It’s back! I always forget how much I love it until the first kickoff. Last week I had the pleasure of watching Tech win with some of my best gals. Totally fun! Wreck ’em!

4. Rangers. Can’t mention sports without a shout out to my favorite first place team! They’re my favorite no matter what place, but first is great. Please let this be the year they win it all!

5. Nook. It’s been almost 2 years and I still love my nook. Even if I neglect it sometimes. I just finished a pretty good series: Jim Knighthorse by J.R. Rain. Rain usually writes vampire books, but this is a series about a human private investigator and I enjoyed it.

6. Netflix. I’m pretty sure I have professed my love for Netflix instant streaming before. Let me say it again. I LOVE IT. I come home everyday, turn on my tv and Wii and watch. I didn’t even watch current shows this last year because I was watching so much Netflix.

7. Cooler weather. We are so close. Today is supposed to 102 or something like that, but tomorrow’s high: 88! I hate the heat, so even a hint of a cold front is heaven to me.