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

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

Leave a comment »

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!!!!


Leave a comment »

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

1 Comment »

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!

Leave a comment »

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.


Quick Takes…Monday?

I KNOW. This is more than a little late. The real title of this post should be “I Don’t Want to Pack.” You’ve been warned – the crazy might be all over the place.


1. So, a month ago I started a new job. A better job. And I love it – really. I work with great people, my work varies from day to day (even hour to hour sometimes!) and it’s a great environment.

2. The timing was awesome since my current lease is up at the end of November. Three days before starting the new job, I went apartment hunting – and found one that is great! Close to work, in my price range, and to quote my mom, “It’s pretty!”

3. Those of you who graduated kindergarten can figure out that if I signed a lease a month ago, then I have had a month to pack. While I have been doing it, it has not been at a very “fast” pace. Which leaves me here. A few days before the big move (Wednesday and Thursday don’t count because I’ll be at my parents) and not done. I don’t even feel close, though I think I’m underestimating.  And of course, I’m finding a million other things to do.

4. For example, 20 minutes ago I went to my car to get boxes out of my trunk. That somehow turned into a trip to Yogurt Story. The boxes are still in the trunk by the way.

5. Speaking of Yogurt Story, people should hire me to make combinations for them. Last night, I did Pumpkin Pie with granola, nuts, and caramel sauce. SO good. Tonight, I did Peanut Butter with banana, granola, nuts and chocolate sauce. What can I say? It’s a gift!

6. Yes. I went to Yogurt Story two nights in a row. And?

7. Ok, time to go pack. I really am excited about my new place. I will just be MORE excited once everything is inside and unpacked.


Later this week: a post about no-longer-lame-Thanksgiving and if you’re lucky, a post about how moving makes my many idiosyncrasies come out and play.

Leave a comment »

Quick Takes: Oct. 15, 2010

1. Let’s start with last weekend. Whew! It was exhausting, but so fun. Friday night I went to a Volunteer Appreciation Dinner at church and then to a friend’s house for the hot tub! It was the perfect evening for it too. Saturday was B-U-S-Y. My two favorite sports teams in the entire world were playing and I had tickets to both games! AH! And in different cities! I woke up early, drove to my friend Joe’s residence and we went to the Fair to see our alma mater play. There was a little mixup when we got there (long story), but we finally got in and enjoyed the win with our friends from college days. It’s so fun to hang out with old friends, especially now that so many of them are married and have children (or are about to have children!). As soon as the game was over, Joe and I made a mad dash to catch the Ranger game. Actually, that game deserves it’s own “take.”

2. Rangers. Ok, I have been a baseball fan for, well, forever. You can blame my parents who took me to softball games starting at about oh, 5 months old. From then on, every Tuesday and Friday night was spent watching my dad play. Then I started playing. And of course, we watched and rooted for the Rangers constantly. I even worked for them for two summers in college. So now that the Rangers have gone farther than they EVER HAVE BEFORE, I’m thrilled. I’ve never been to a playoff game, so I was excited to go on Saturday (even if it was just the ALDS). The atmosphere was electrifying! There was so much red, blue and white (team colors) and everyone went crazy over everything. It was the biggest crowd they had ever had, and it felt that way! Even though we lost, it was still amazing. Since the game was at 4, we had dinner afterwards with our friends Wally and Charlene who had gone to the game with us. It was at dinner that I really started to feel the effects of the super long day. Sleep could not come fast enough!

3. Continuing the awesomeness, in about one week I start a new job! My current job has been great, but it’s only been part time so I’ve been wanting something more permanent with more opportunity for growth, and through some wonderful God-incidences, I found one! I love starting new jobs – it’s so full of excitement. However, I hope this is the last first day of work for awhile. It’d be nice to stay somewhere.

4. I recently re-committed myself to fitness and I’ll be darned if it isn’t working. I’ve been getting up just about very day at 5am and going for a brisk walk. I developed a schedule to ease myself into it and right now I’m at 2 miles a day. My family is going to do a 5K on Thanksgiving and I plan to walk it (I don’t want to push myself too much), but after that I am going to start incorporating running into the morning workouts. Then I’ll start looking for some 5Ks I can run!

5. That entire previous paragraph makes me laugh. I never thought I’d get excited about walking and running. Ever.

6. Wednesday nights for me involve a youth program we do with the high school girls. Every year of course, we get new girls. This week, it finally started clicking with some of the girls why we do what we do. It is so lovely to see these girls be friends to each other. They laugh with each other, comfort each other, and give each other advice. This is so counter-cultural to the high school way of life. As one girl put it, “Normally when I’m with a group of girls, there’s a few that I can’t stand and most I can’t trust. But here, I like everybody and I know I can trust them with anything and I will be loved and accepted.”

7. I have so much Hulu to catch up on, it’s embarrassing. Just sayin’.

1 Comment »

7 Quick Takes – Cars edition

1. My car hit 100,000 miles on Monday. This is my second car to do this. Of course, the first one died shortly after hitting 100,000 so I’m crossing fingers that it doesn’t happen to this one. It got me thinking about my previous cars, so here’s a little recap for you.

2. First car: 1995 Mercury Tracer. My first car, like most of my cars, was a hand-me-down from Dad. Not that I was complaining. I liked this car. Craziest story about this car: I skipped school in it. No really. I did. Accidents: 3. Two fender benders and the fatal blow. Farewell story: I totaled it in May 2001.

3. Second car: 1999 Chevrolet Cavalier (2 door). This was really my sister’s car, but I drove it the summer I wrecked my car since she wasn’t 16 yet. Not bad, but I don’t like 2-door cars (unless it’s a sports car). Craziest story about this car: I worked for the Rangers that summer and my very last day before heading back to college, I managed to lock my keys in the car – which I didn’t figure out til time to go home (around 11pm). Luckily, the Ballpark has a locksmith and luckier, they don’t charge employees! Accidents in it: None. Farewell story: I went to college and my sister drove the car.

4. Third car: 1993 Ford Taurus. Ol’ Blue was a hand-me-down from my Mom and was a complete tank, especially after driving the Tracer and Cavalier. It was power everything, which I loved. I took this out to college and it could probably tell you some stories. Craziest story about this car: Probably a lot. None stand out. I do remember the Felux boys spilling Rosa’s queso in the back seat. That stuff never comes out. Accidents in it: None. Farewell story: First day of senior year (which also happened to be the first time I did not live on campus and needed my car to get to class), it died. Would not start. It needed about $2,000 worth of repairs and parts and since it was 100,000+ miles and was 10 years old, my dad sold it to the mechanic for $400. Interestingly enough, I would soon find out that the mechanic was the dad of a friend of mine and Ol’ Blue was revived for his sister and ran another couple of years.

5. Fourth car: 2002 (I think) Chevrolet Cavalier (4 door). When Ol’ Blue died, my Dad came up to Lubbock to help me get a new car. Thanks to a sweet hookup from my roommate, we found ourselves talking to the financial manager of a local dealer about used cars. I didn’t like the 2-door Cavalier, so when he said he had a Cavalier on the lot in good condition, I wasn’t feeling it. But this one was four door, I liked it, and better yet, was the right price. Plus, it had only belonged to the dealer so it had low mileage and was in great shape. Craziest story about this car: Nothing too crazy happened in this car. Oh, once when I was in an apartment, I came down to my car in the morning and all the paperwork from the glove box was on the floorboards. I couldn’t figure it out until I realized one of the back doors was unlocked (manual locks). My heart was racing thinking somebody had stolen something, but nothing seemed to be gone. I chalked it up to kids playing around (we had lots of kids in the complex) until I finally discovered what was missing: the overhead lightbulb. It cost me $1.97 to replace. True story. Accidents in it: None. Farewell story: it started giving me problems, so we got rid of it.

6. Fifth car: 2005 Nissan Altima. This is the car I have now. Again, it is a hand me down from my mom when she took my grandmother’s 2007 Altima when she passed away in 2007. It’s been pretty good. Craziest story: I got it stuck in the mud (long story) and when my friend arrived to pull me out, we discovered a Nissan flaw – no tow ring in the back. Chains had to be put around the tires and my car was pivoted around. It was extremely muddy and I now call him “Knight in Muddy Armor.” Accidents in it: 2. Neither my fault, I was rear ended twice in 6 months. Farewell story: hasn’t happened yet – knock on wood!

7. Sixth car: hasn’t happened yet! Honestly, I’d like my mom’s car. The 2007 has some pretty sweet features including keyless entry and the power button (so cool). Though after seeing my sister’s navigation system, I wouldn’t mind something with that. Money of course, is the main obstacle. 🙂

Leave a comment »

7 Quick Takes: August 27, 2010

This week I’m doing a theme Quick Takes. I’m about to start my 5th year as a youth ministry volunteer (1 year at one church, 4 years at my current parish). In honor of that, here are 7 things I’ve learned:

1. Be prepared. For anything. I’ve seen a lot over these past couple of years. Pranks. Games. Injuries. Drama. Crisis’. There have been fish in a cabin, broken windows, broken arms, major emotional meltdowns, tears, fears, family issues, personal issues, everything. There have been good things too, like the kid you thought wasn’t getting anything telling you thank you or a shout out in a speech. They are anything but predictable.

2. You don’t have to click with everyone. One of the things I love most about the way the programs I’ve been involved in do ministry is that it is a team. Not only does that help ease the burden of planning and executing but it means that we have 10-15 different personalities for the teens to connect with. I used to get a little distraught that there were some teens that I seemed to have nothing in common with. Then I realized that those teens hit it off with another Core member and I was grateful they had that person. I still try to meet them all and get to know them, but I don’t worry so much if they don’t seem interested in talking to me much (as long as there is SOMEONE they connect with!)

3. They teach me. If I had half the energy and passion in high school for my faith that some of these kids have, wow. I don’t know what would have come of me. I may teach them every Sunday and Wednesday, but they teach me so much.

4. High School never changes. The kids change, the teachers change, the technology changes, the courses change. But the general themes of high school never change. The teens are still clique-ish, they still long to be accepted by someone,(even if they don’t act that way), they still try to be adults with kid brains (and kid sense), and they still think it’s ok to be silly and goofy and loud and crazy, even if they are acting more mature. It’s comforting to know that the standard feeling haven’t changed, even if their environments look different from when I was there.

5. They really are listening. People say all the time that teens don’t listen. Baloney. I remember early on I overheard one of teens telling someone, “Well, I asked Holly and she said…” It was a conversation that I didn’t even remember having. Instant fear flooded my body as I thought “I really hope I said something correct!” (It was.) I learned then and there that the teens really were listening to me and taking what I told them to be true. So I’d better be right when I said it. Whenever I stop and think how much influence my words and actions have on them, I’m humbled. and a little bit scared.

6. There is no such thing as a hypothetical or random question. One day we were traveling to an event and a teen casually asked me about a teaching of the church. I said a few words and then said “Oh, we’ll be talking about that in a few weeks. You’ll learn about it then.” A few days later the teen finally told me that she was dealing with that issue now and needed guidance. I realized that her seemingly out-of-the-blue question had much more to it. I reflected on that moment and observed in the weeks following. Whenever a teen asked something that seemed random or off-topic, I asked why. Almost every single time, it was because of something going on in their lives or in the lives of their friends and family. Since then, I try not to blow off a question or tell them “we’ll talk about that in a few weeks.” If I have to postpone because it’s not a good time, I try to make it no more than 24 hours.

7. They are a lot of fun. High schoolers get a bad rep for not moody, apathetic and a general pain and for not wanting to have fun with adults. Yet, some of the times when I laugh the most is with them. They genuinely like having a good time and they want us to be involved with that fun, not sit on the edge of the room and “watch” them. I have my own personal rules (as well as the church guidelines) on how much time I spend with them because I am an adult, but every time we have meetings or class or events or retreats, I really enjoy their antics and stories and conversations. They have life and energy and love like no one else. I don’t know when we lose it as adults, but we really do. Being with them brings some of it back to me.

More Quick Takes can be found at http://www.conversiondiary.com

Leave a comment »

7 Quick Takes: August 20, 2010

1. I’m in the midst of de-cluttering my files (and ultimately my life) and I really wish I wasn’t such a pack rat sentimentalist. Do I really need this stuff? No. Can I convince myself of it? No. My compromise right now is to scan a lot of it. Throw away paperwork, but keep the info. It’s time consuming. And annoying. And yet, I can’t seem to convince myself that I can just throw it away and be ok with it.

2. Another aspect of my de-cluttering project has been to de-clutter my diet. Simpler foods, less complicated everything. I hope to save money (and calories). It’s going alright.

3. Have you tried Evernote? I like it. I realize I could bookmark things, but sometimes the link doesn’t survive.People move around files and then I can’t find that cool article or product anymore. Evernote lets me keep the article, no matter how many times it moves.

4. It is blazing hot. Crazy hot. Insane hot. I am beyond tired of it. I hate when it gets this hot and can’t wait until cooler temps. I can’t wait to not sweat from the 15 minute (A/C) drive home from work. I’m tired of feeling gross all the time. Blech.

5. The seniors in our youth ministry program this year were freshmen when I joined. I’m really going to enjoy seeing them be the oldest this year and I am so excited to see them finish up their high school careers. They’ve all grown so much, physically, spiritually, emotionally. It’s been beautiful to watch.

6. One of my new personal heroes is the girl over at newdressaday.wordpress.com. (I think her name is Marisa). I saw her story on Yahoo! and I love her. I am now seriously wanting to learn to sew (for real, not stupid straight line stuff that I’m able to do).

7. Speaking of sewing and decluttering (talk about bringing everything full circle!), I finally gathered up some of my favorite college t-shirts (mainly CSA/RA) and put them in a box. A friend of mine is going to help me make a t-shirt quilt out of them. I’ve been wanting to, but kept telling myself that since I still wore them, I shouldn’t do it. When I cleaned out my dressers recently and realized that I had two drawers full of t-shirts that aren’t more than 5+ years old, I decided it was time. I’m excited to see it. I’m sure it’s going to be huge: multiple RA shirts (8-10, more than likely), CSA Atheltics shirt. 2 formal shirts (maybe 3). It’s going to be huge, but an awesome reminder of some of the best times of my life.

Leave a comment »