Friday, April 29, 2011

Anytime I am feeling really upset and worried that I cannot possibly do something that has been assigned for me to accomplish, I think of a list of things I have mentally titled: Things I Know I Can Do Because I’ve Done Them Before. And I always have this horrible fear for days or weeks before the event happens, and I always think, right after, that No, that was not worth it. But then, I let it all sink in, admit that Sister #1was right and I’m growing as a person, blah blah blah, and add it to my list of Things I Know I can Do.
Here are some examples of the things that I would have sworn to you I simply could not do that are on that list: move to a new city and live alone, go to a third world country to build a well, buy a house, run 5 miles, and the list goes on and on. Some things aren’t even as big as these things; sometimes I add things to the List like caulk the tub, put together shelves for the garage, or stop watching TV. You get the point.
Well a few months ago I was faced with a task that I knew I couldn’t do. I know for a fact, and I’m 100% confident, that I cannot speak in front of people. And I know that you do not understand this feeling unless you too have this paralyzing fear. It’s not rational. It’s not something I can breathe, train, or talk myself through. Even thinking about speaking in front of a group makes me sick; I can’t eat, I can’t sleep, and I can’t think or talk about anything besides the topic of what I have to present until it’s over. And then, no, I do not feel better about it after it’s over. It takes a few more days to even calm down.
The reason I am posting about this is because of some of the books I have mentioned on this blog and how they relate to this. I have been reading books about leading change management, a book about caring for our caregivers and doing so with a servant’s heart, and about being a teammate and coworker. You see, I really have been reading, I promise.
Four weeks ago I had my six month review at work. That day, a Tuesday, I was told I would not need to demo our product to prospective clients; that my role would be the trainer/implementer. I sighed a huge sigh of relief as I walked out of my boss’s office. That Thursday, my partner, the demo pro, became ill. Very ill. By Friday morning we knew he might be out for some time and would definitely not complete the demo a few hours away that following Monday. So I had three days to step it up. To help lead this change, to care for my coworker, to be a team player with a servant’s heart, learn the system enough to be the “pro”, and say, “yes, I can do this demo so we don’t ruin this relationship.”
And then I went home and cried to my adorable husband. I was worried about my partner. I was worried about the material. And I was petrified that I simply could not do this.
Surprise, surprise…I survived. And surprise, surprise, I have grown from this and I cannot even begin to explain the opportunities that have come from this one time of practicing what I preach. The demo went good. Actually, it went great (or so I was told…I couldn’t remember functioning through most of it). The one hour demo went three hours because the doctors were so engaged. The three hour demo led to a follow up call directly to me from the doctor himself asking for next steps. That call led to a relationship that I care about nurturing and growing with a little practice in Small Town, Nebraska.
As I was absorbing this over the weeks following the demo, I scheduled my second demo. And this time I only lost two nights of sleep. And the morning after that demo, I woke up and God had given me a wave of peace. I felt peaceful about my job and excited for the opportunities I would receive that day. And that same day I scheduled my third and fourth demos. I can see this snowballing. And I can see that I’m growing as a person. And I can see how much it meant to my partner to step up when he needed me to. And I can see that you can face your fears when people you care about need you to do so. And I can see how rewarding it is to meet new people and care about their practice and their patients. And I can see that I can do this. That I can add to my List. That I do not have to be the girl that cannot speak in front of people. And I know I can do it because I have done it before.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

I love "Love It All"

For the whole post, see Love It All's cute blog but I wanted to share this part with you at least: "You have to decide what your highest priorities are and have the courage---pleasantly, smilingly, non-apologetically---to say 'no' to other things. And the way you do that is by having a bigger 'yes' burning inside. The enemy of the 'best' is often the 'good.'"

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

What I'm Reading Wednesdays

I see weekly tradition titles on other blogs and I love it. I don’t know if anyone loves traditions as much as I do. So I decided to start my own. I think it will be fun to tell you which book I’m working on or what I’m reading each Wednesday. So here’s my first one. Yay.
Last night I stayed up late, not worrying about the demo I had to present today (okay, that’s a lie; that is really why I was awake), but instead finishing my friend’s book. My cute friend and I have a running date tomorrow and I wanted to get this finished so I could return it to her. And maybe she will talk to me about it while I’m gasping for breath beside her since I haven’t gone for a run in TWO WEEKS (oh my!).
Okay, at first, I have to admit that I thought this book was a little cheesy, but then again, I’m a little cheesy too. This book ended up being really cute and inspiring.
This is a fiction novel based on Gomer and Hosea in the book of Hosea in the Bible. I remember in college, my best friend and roommate was reading a book about Gomer and I am now going to track this book down and read it; I should have read it while she was. This is THE greatest love story of all time. I’m not going to ruin it for you but I think you should read the Bible story and then read this cute novel, Redeeming Love.

And now, I am going to sit in my favorite chair, celebrate the fact that I completed my second demo, drink wine, and start year 5 of Hogwarts.

Oh, and this mama is taking good care of her 6, that's right, 6!, eggs. I can't wait until these precious babies start hatching!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Grown Up Makeup

Last week I ran out of makeup and decided to try some new products. Among these newbies was Physician's Formula tinted moisturizer. I love love love it! I can't wait until it's pool time and I can put just this on with a little mascara (and bathing suit of course). On top of having a tinted glow, it had SPF and is light and not sticky.

I was just reading my new Better Homes (yes I realize this is not any of the books I promised to finish, but I needed to relax tonight since I have a demo tomorrow that I am trying my hardest to not freak out about) and signed up for my very first give away! They are giving away Physician's Formula bronzer! Here is a link to the bronzer - I bet it rocks and I hope I win!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

John 3:16

My adorable husband and I had the very best weekend. We woke up and cleaned our house on Saturday morning. Every time we clean and organize I am more thankful for our home. I feel so blessed.

I also made cupcakes for a friend at work's daughter. She turns fifteen this week, and she is the sweetest Freshman girl in the world. I'm trying to learn how to use my cake decorating tools.

Saturday night Strasser Girl #2 and Shane were coming to stay with us, and since it was my dad's 59th Birthday, we invited my parents over for hamburgers on the grill. We had a great night hanging out with them. Then the Strasser Girl #2 and I lost in Scrabble to our boys. It wasn't the proudest moment for the Strasser Girls.

Easter was on Sunday. Since this is a blog about books (hah, I know that it's not really about that these days) I wanted to share that I am loving the book of Luke in the Bible. My adorable husband and I have been reading a chapter a night. And I have grown up in church, but I feel like I'm hearing some of these stories for the first time. I love it! David and I read the passage in Luke about how Jesus went to have dinner with a Pharisee and a “sinful” woman came and washed his feet with her tears and hair and then used perfume. And Jesus said "I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—as her great love has shown."

We had a wonderful Easter Sunday with our families. We went to brunch at my inlaws and dinner at my parents. I love our families so much I can't even explain it. They are too wonderful for words.

Look at this adorable cross cake (a 30 year tradition) my cute mother-in-law made:

And this is the precious Easter Bunny cake my mom made with me nephew. Could I have cuter moms? I don't think so!

And here are the delicious fad, cake pops, that Strasser Girl #1 made for our dad and Strasser Girl #4's Birthdays:

Needless to say after all those sugary pictures, I don't think I will be sleeping tonight and will be in desperate need of a sugar detox week. No more. I'm quitting cold turkey....right after I finish all the jelly beans in our Easter baskets.

And I can't get through one more post without a picture of the number 2 man in my life. He had a great weekend with his cousin Brooksie bear, but now he is exhausted!

Happy Easter blog friends, and Happy Spring. Here is a quote I started the weekend with that Strasser Girl #2 sent me on Friday morning.

Our Lord has written the promise of the resurrection, not in books alone but in every leaf in springtime. –Martin Luther

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Robin Egg Blue

When David and I found our house and showed my adoring inlaws, my mother-in-law could only gasp and say it was her very favorite color, robin egg blue.

One issue with our house was that over one window, a bird had pecked through where a wire/tubey thing goes into the underneath section of our roof. It's confusing, but I was worried that there would be birds in our attic! So a few weekends ago David had to climb a ladder and pull out a nest (as I stood there, steadying the ladder and trying not to cry) that thank goodness, did not have any eggs in it yet. I was sad for the bird that sat on a tree limb and yelled at us the entire time. I have been worried about where she would build her new nest...

All my worrying ended a few days ago when I saw something flutter out of the corner of my eye on our porch. The bird found a new nest home in the wreath on our front door! I am thrilled! David's not so much.

David called me to the door this morning and look what we found!!

2 Wonderful Months!

As you know, I love to celebrate everything big and small. A few days ago David and I celebrated our anniversary...our two month anniversary that is. So to celebrate we decided to go to Frederick Inn, and now Frederick Inn is "our spot." Here is why.

 Potato crusted tilapia with lima beans

And for David......

 know I don't really eat red meat and so therefore my sweet husband rarely gets this......

 rib and twice baked potato!

He was one happy guy!

The meals here are served with salad and fresh homemade rolls and cinnamon rolls. We ordered homemade banana cream pie and cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory for dessert. We had the best night and can't wait to go back. I think it's a St. Joe treasure.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Sick, sick, sick

Friday afternoon David and I were so excited to go watch our nephews and spend the evening with them. Before we went there, I ran by the library to get some books on CD for my trip the next morning. I was all packed up and ready to go visit Miss Neely Anne Krueger, my best friend's daughter who turned one month old just the day before. I had the diapers and onesies packed up, my books on tape ready, and grabbed some pizza to take to the boys.

We had a great evening with S and E. They are THE cutest boys in the world. Well we got them to bed and I told David I didn't feel very good. Within ten minutes I was throwing up every few minutes. This went on until about 2 a.m. I won't give you the details, but I want to tell you there is a bad, bad flu going around. My pregnant friend has actually had this TWICE in the last year. Oh it is horrible. This is about 36 hours later and all I can do is lay around, drink Sierra Mist, and cuddle Bo who didn't leave my side all weekend. I missed my fun day trip to St. Louis and a beautiful friend's wedding last night. :(

I did finish Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire last night though, and it was so, so good!
The movie was great, but not nearly as good as the book. I know this seems obvious, however, the first three had been pretty good in comparison. So I think the fourth movie might have been better if I hadn't read the book. The book is wonderful. You should read it. And now, back to resting.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Happy Spring Continued

I found a cute site in my Better Homes magazine. Go to the New York Botanical Garden Shop online. They have 3 bucks shipping on small orders so you can get a couple of cute watering cans or trinkets for under ten bucks!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


I apologize for the lack of posts, but I have been ridiculously busy at work. I won’t list everything that has been going on, but let's just say it’s all wonderfully busy and I honestly have the most supportive husband in the world - and team and friends and family! Work has pulled me away from a lot of things, but it has not pulled me away from recognizing it’s Spring!
A few things single spring to me. And if you are keeping track, I will have you know that Spring is one of my four favorite seasons.

In the past five days I have used our new grill for the first time and eaten dinner on the deck with my adorable husband, taken Bo on numerous walks, picnic lunched with my sister and nephew, gone for a run with my cute friend and by myself, been to the annual YWCA spring luncheon to be introduced as a board member, worked in the yard, and stared out my front window to make sure I’m not missing any hummingbirds that visit my feeder.
But, the number one signal that it is spring and time to be outside is when you cannot get Bo away from the front door. Bo loves Spring more than anyone.

And now, I’m going to cuddle up with my Bo and a springy cocktail and finish Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. That is, if I can convince Bo to leave his post at the door.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

An April Reading List

My reading list for the next month (Seriously, I am giving myself exactly one month to complete these, you can hold me to it):
-          Harry Potter book 4..I’m almost done and oh boooy!
-          Radical Loving Care by Erie Chapman
-          Leading Change by John P. Kotter
-          The Power of  a Praying Woman (my small group would definitely agree that we need to finish this book; we’ve been slackers)
I know this is only three and a half quick books and I should finish these in a week or two, not a month. But in light of “getting real,” I figured that between United Way Community Investment projects and presentations, YWCA board meetings, supporting my husband with his one million commitments, attending church, Sunday school, and small group, and leading my very first PowerWorks SPM and EMR Implementation 90 miles away, you might cut me some slack and give me a month…or not point fingers and laugh when it’s five or six weeks even.
Now, I’m not sure that you care to read Leading Change along with me, but I totally think you should read Harry Potter. I have thought, from the day something came over me and I begged my mom to order these from her school book fair for me, that this is very odd for me. At a previous time, I would have all high and mightily rolled my eyes at you if you told me to read this series. But now, roll your eyes at me, get over your literary self begging you not to stoop to this fairy tale like level of reading, and read them. You owe it to yourself to give it a try. And be glad that I didn’t post my original draft, which was all about my excitement for our new clinic and all the details of my project plan for my first lead! I am so excited I can’t sleep, but you would be yawning. Consider yourselves lucky, and once again, acknowledge how wonderful my husband is because I tell him all about it instead of posting it here.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Happy Baseball Season!

We had the best Saturday with our friends at the Royals game! Happy baseball season everyone!