“Wednesday,” and what that means; CB, Panera, teaching class, grocery shopping, and sanitation buckets. (Why can’t I just strum and sing?)

Today is Wednesday.

At Cracker Barrel, that means that a herd of elderly folk will be rushing through the swinging wooden doors to claim their personal, weekly chicken pot pie (with which comes no sides, because the vegetables are IN the pie).

At Panera, that means garden vegetable with pesto soup is available and is sure to be sold.

At church, it’s prayer meeting –

at school, it’s “hump” day.

Today, I’m sitting at Panera, watching my ‘Chrissopher Missopher’ “do his thing.”  He’s supposed to go on a lunch break soon, and we’ll be eating together.  Until then, and afterwards, I’ll be sitting here – typing.

Typing WHAT, you ask?

Here, is a typed copy of last night’s entry.

But before that..

the (cutest?) thing just happened.  And I’m going to mention it to Chris.

Three young (teenage, prissy) girls just pranced out of Panera, talking loudly (offff course).. one of them wearing:

blue athletic (the dorky, NOT-to-your-knee kind) shorts, a grey sweater, a white t-shirt OVER the sweater, and knee high boots.

(Also, her hair was pulled back in a pony tail).

Come on!.. IF THAT isn’t tacky.

Chris is ALWAYS getting on to me for dressing ugly, tacky, or “dike-like.”  Well, I can’t POSSIBLY look any worse or sillier than SHE did.  🙂

Now, proceeding onward –


Can’t sleep.  9:23 PM.

It’s Tuesday, and Chris is upstairs, lying in bed, fast asleep.  He didn’t even kiss me goodnight, so I  know he’s tired.  I, however, am restless.  The past week or so has been busy, so, I figured I’d take a few moments to write.

Married life” is still something.. new; something I’m growing used to.. taking care of everything we’re responsible for, anticipating and providing for our needs, budgeting, keeping our living space half-way clean, managing time, sucking it up when I can’t be by his side and CHOOSING MY BATTLES WISELY.  That one’s hard.

It just seems like there’s so much you could complain about.. so many disappointments and shortcomings – feelings hurt, unfulfilled needs, unrecognized and unaddressed concerns and insecurities.  I’m learning, anyways.  You develop the truest and strongest people skills when you marry someone.  That’s also the time when you learn the most about your spiritual condition — how much like Christ you really are.  How thoughtful of others, forgetful of self, caring, compassionate, forbearing, forgiving, you are..

Chris and I have been doing well with grocery shopping and meal planning; we have a pretty good policy regarding NOT wasting food.  (The only food that doesn’t get utilized is the produce inside our one drawer – the allotted portion of fridge space – that spoils and rots).  We’re 90% vegan, balanced, satisfied (aka, not starving).  Half of what we buy is organic, and our ingredients list varies, which is healthful (too much of any good thing isn’t good..)

And same with too much of a NOT good thing (do we have to call it bad?) that we like.


Chris and I hit our bottom low awhile back when sugar ruled, and fueled, our crazy little world and collective lives.

Obsession #1: Brusters.

We’d go every night (and only at night; ice cream just isn’t fun during the day), or atleast 6/7 nights out of the week, for milkshakes.  This lasted for about three weeks.  We were awful vegans during this time.

Obsession #2: Starbucks.

The double chocolaty chip frapaccinos pleasured us indeed.  We were fixated for two weeks straight.

Obsession #3: “Healthy Chocolate Bars.”

Classified so favorably because we bought them at the health food store.  Chris’s flavor: dark ginger.  My choicest variety: dark orange.

Obession #4: The present addiction is.. floats.

We drive to Organic Harvest (a local hfs) and buy these two ingredients:

1. A pint of Almond Dream (vegan) ice cream.

2. Identical bottles of “healthy” (alternative) cane-sugar sweetened sodas.. our favorite flavor: black cherry.

As of yet, we aren’t sick of it.  We over-did it and “burnt out” on everything else, so Chris says we can’t have floats every day – only once a week, so that we’ll enjoy them for a while.

[Chris’s mom just walked downstairs; she’s coughing and can’t sleep.]

Besides that.. working at “the Cracker Barrel” kind of sucks these days.  It’s just, stressful.  For one, Chris is scheduled for AM shifts and I am typically – the majority of the time – scheduled for PM shifts.  A good example was today: Chris was scheduled to work 6:30 (am) to 1:30 (pm) at Panera, and I was scheduled to come in from 11 (am) to 7:30 (pm) at Cracker Barrel.. so from 6 am to 8 pm, we don’t see eachother.

It sucks.


Additionally.. it’s too much like prison, working as a server.  There is no stability — shifts vary from day to day — and to get off of the clock, one has to receive three signatures: one after inspection of tables (did you sweep, wipe, re-fill, re-store and count your sugars?); the 2nd is for completion of side work (ranges from sweeping and changing sanitation buckets to disassembling, cleaning and putting back together a juice machine); and the third signature comes when you have successfully and satisfactorily rolled anywhere from 50 to 200 silverware, depending on the length of your shift.  So yeah.  The schedule says your of at 7:30.. but chances are, you won’t be walking out til half-past eight..

maybe nine.

Depends on when they ‘cut the floor’– when they decide they don’t need you waiting on customers, running food and bussing tables anymore.. that factor also slows down the process of getting the three said signatures.  A lot of that work I mentioned earlier can only be done once you’ve been “cut.”


Anyways, I’m looking for a day job.  Bank, office work, cashiering.. whatever.  Until I’m able to begin and finish earning my college degree, it’s slim pickings.  Still hoping I can just be a well-paid musician — working anywhere, for ‘someone.’

So, this month is pastor appreciation month.  It’s cool, because Chris and I put together a little “love basket” for Pastor Karl and Mrs. Trudy (the minister and wife of our local SDA Church).  This involved going to the health food store, buying pretty fruits and vegan cookies, stopping by a “Rite Aid” for chocolates and a Dollar General (we’re young, and unrich) for the basket itself, two cards and confetti.  Then we dropped it off at the church,and they happened to be there.  It was nice; and it is nice.. to have a church family that you really love, and who actually love you.  Mrs. Trudy invited Christ and I over for lunch with her and Pastor Karl this Sabbath.  We’re looking forward to it.


Besides all of that – Chris and I have both been busy.  I led out in a group Bible study (called Friday Night Feast) one Friday night, and he led out in the same the next (this past) Friday.  Additionally, he’s been filling in as teacher for the collegiate class and I’ve been alternatingly assisting and leading out in the earliteens room/ department.  It’s enjoyable; we both love teaching an serving God, so it’s the highest service and choicest blessing that we could give and receive.   We helped make signs for the yard sale our FNF Bible study group headed out this past Sunday.  They earned over $700, which will be used to provide means for transportation to/ housing in NY this December for GYC (an annual youth rally hosted by the SDA Church).  Chris and I, ourselves, will not be able to attend, as we’re too early in our jobs to ask a significant (one week) amount of time off work.


“So, how’s the weather?”

It’s been very nice the past two days: dark, cool, windy, rainy, thunder-lightning storming.  I love it.


The other night, I just laid there in bed.. quiet, with my arms wrapped around Chris..listening to the pitter patter of the rain, that mimics the “tap tap” that might be played on a tin can.. the deep roar of the thunder.. the distant hum of the train guiding itself down the wet and rusty railroad tracks.. the gentle murmur of the wind.. and him, snoring quietly – fast asleep.  My eyes were open, watching the brilliant leaps and beams of lightning, the black shadows and illuminated spots of the room.  The sights and sounds were the same tonight before I came downstairs, before I decided that I couldn’t sleep.  I remember seeing Raggedy Ann, sitting on Walmart’s newly purchased plastic white cabinet, staring at me.. the streetlight climbed up my window, around the drapes, and lighted centrally upon her face.  It was awkward.


Andddd I still miss my mother.

I was sitting downstairs tonight, in the red-swivel chair in the kitchen, watching Chris prepare dinner (we had veggie tacos, fresh corn and a mango key-lime pie from Publix).  My mom and I were texting back and forth, and two lines that she wrote replay over and over in my mind.


“I came home, thought of you and started crying.  …I’m looking forward to January.”


I remember mustering all the strength I had to compose myself and mumbling, nonchalantly, to Chris that I’d “be right back.”  I remember trudging upstairs, quickly, my eyes glued to the floor, finally finding myself in Chris’s dark bedroom.  I shut the door behind me, fell onto the bed, clutched my stuffed puppy Capaccino and cried.  “Why did I leave her?”  It’s the first time I’ve ever punched a bed mattress in anger, in distress, in fear,

in sadness.


I miss my mom, and I hate that she has to miss me.  I wish that the pain I feel could be enough for the both of us.


And what’s interesting, is I’m pretty sure I’ m more attached to her than she is to me, and I’m quite certain that she doesn’t even realize it.


Tell any little girl she has to leave her mother.  Watch her little eyes well up with tears and her her quick, sharp, quivering voice urge it’s defenses.

How can I be any different

when I grew up too fast and have recently reverted to the

likeness of childhood?


And how DID I leave my mother?  I mean, so soon?  She and my grandmother called it YEARS ago.

Countless times, we’d be sitting together, chatting around a table, and I’d watch, listen, smile and roll my eyes as Grammy would twist her tan, ruddy face and whimper “Rosie’s going to leave us soon!”  My mom would chime in, “Yep.  When she turns 18.”


They’d beg me not to go, and I’d reassure them that I didn’t plan on it – that they were ridiculous and silly..


So WHY DID I leave my mom?  I was 18, it was May, and I was driving to NY for Bible school..


and then, I was still 18, and it was July – I was moving to Ukraine with Chris to do mission work, GOD’S work, for 9 months..


and now, it’s I’m married and settled down in Alabama.

I’m nineteen, and the work, is completed.



I’m going to bed now.  -Aun Aqui





I don’t care if it’s a bouillon spoon. I’m rolling with it. (it’s pure, it’s unclean – it’s black, it’s blue, it can be small, or as large and full and without bounds as infinity.)

“When a thing is finished, we should let the curtain fall and go on to the next thing without making comparisons..”

-Joyce Meyers

“The human mind is inspired enough when it comes to inventing horrors, it is when it tries to invent a HEAVEN that it shows itself cloddish.”

-Evelyn Waugh

And “better,” is a relative word.  -Aun Aqui


Hello, world.

Not much is new, like usual.

Chris and I have jobs.. he starts working at Panera tomorrow, and I’ve been working at this new Cracker Barrel for about a week now.  He was supposed to start yesterday (and I was scheduled to work yesterday), but, neither of us could make it, because we’ve been

super sick.

I was up with him for hours Monday night; he had a high fever, chills, a headache, sore throat, a stuffy nose, nausea, muscle pain and bone aches.  It was awful.  I went up and down the stairs several times, getting whatever things I thought might make him feel better.  First, he was out of water.. so I went downstairs and re-filled his water bottle.  Then, his head and neck were so hot he could hardly stand it, so I returned downstairs to grab two ice packs out of the freezer.  Later on, he was beginning to feel nauseous and the water had ceased to soothe his sore throat — he thought Gatorade might do a better job.. and so, I journeyed downward for the sought for, orange-flavored, Gatorade.

I sat up in bed and let him lay his head in my lap; it seemed like, after hours of tossing, turning and moaning, that was the only position he was comfortable in.  I sat there and stroked his back, head and neck, softly, looking at him, thinking, praying.  I couldn’t sleep — one, I was worried about him, and two, it was an awkward position to go unconscious in.

And it was my pleasure.


I began this entry DAYS ago.  Never finished it.. anyways, Chris and I are both better now.  I’ve worked (so far) 3 days “in a row” this week (generated a little over $200) and Chris worked his AM shift today (5-10).. but anyways, here’s what I wrote in my journal TODAY, just a few moments, sitting outside on the concrete.  I was leaning up against my car, which provided a nice, cool SHADE, thinking about life in a general sort-of-way.  It,.. the product, the composition, the entry,.. is a pretty good synopsis of “recent life.”

(L-R: me, chris)


Sketchpad: “Fulfillment? Yes–no.” -ARY (that’s me now.. ARR, history)

You’re starting to hurt, when the bleeding is done.

you’re feeling the pain, the ache, the burn

You’re wanting to run, now that you’ve been caught.

you’re forgetting to breathe, to live, to love

And it always leaves you


every dream you’ve ever dreamt that came


it’s like you’re always waiting for,


is it old.  is it new.

You’re catching your breath before you run

You’re feeling the heat, the chill, the cold

and You’re positive that you’ve already won

Even before the race has begun

And it always leaves you


The dreaming apart from it’s end.

And you picture yourself as


so willing and ready

to let them win.


October 13th.

I’m feeling a lot.  And deeply.

My emotions are strong, clamoring for attention, at the front of my mind, on the flesh of my heart.  The air is colder than it has been and the sky has taken on a deeper, darker blue..

I find myself in it’s honesty – in the singleness, of it’s hue.

(And i wish it was somehow permeable, that I could push my way through and

reach you.)  AA

Work, sucks.  The other day, was quite awful.

I had a whole dining room to myself (around 20 tables), and it was during the “dead hours;” 2-4 pm.  Somehow, we got busy enough to where I was “double sat..” but, anticipating no trouble, I felt competent to “handle the situation.”

I brought out the drinks and put in the orders of both tables and.. looking out into the first dining room and scanning quickly, noticed, I had just been “sat,” again.  For the third time, in like, 5-7 minutes.

“Good thing the other two are content for now,” I mused to myself.

Immediately, as I turned from the computer, where I had just rang in the second order, my name echoed from the kitchen.


“Yes?” I queried, already nervous and expecting undesired news.

“We’re out of the lunch special.”  It was Monday.

It was baked chicken and dressing.

WELL, lovely Christina.. I never got THAT memo.  Really, had anyone called out an “86” ANYTHING all day?

“No! Seriously?” I implored.  “There aren’t ANY?”

She shook her head, her eyes quizzing mine.

“This suckkkkks,” I breathed, snatching four menus and returning to the dining room.  I still hadn’t been over to greet table 151, but, perceiving that they were elderly, I generously assured myself that they’d love to have a few moments to themselves, that they might look over the menu REAL good two or three.. four times.

“I’m so sorry,” I repeated to both tables (whose orders I had already taken), breaking the news.

“We are out.. of the baked chicken and dressing.”

Let your imagination roll with this, okay?  In the restaurant business – in the waitressing world – telling a guest that their desired food entree is not in stock, cooked, or available is the equivalent of a doctor, in the medical field,  informing a patient that his leg needs to be amputated.. he has cancer.. or his child is dying.

I waited, eyes and ears attentive, to see and hear the response.. bummed, devastated, angry.. a few seats exchanged glances and “looks” and they murmured that they’d need to look at the menu again.  “Again, I’m really sorry,” I offered as I turned to check on the other table.  I received silence.  That is the customer saying, “I hate you. And your tip, is history.”

LONG story short, one table requested dessert “on the house” (to which my manager irritably agreed) and the other actually left me five dollars.  The third table I, somehow, found time to assist, along with the tables proceeding the incident.

I had begun feeling nauseated about five minutes into the crisis.  Chris picked me up around two hours later and I was still very nauseous.  I hadn’t eaten for about eight hours, and when we got home, I laid down immediately.  He went downstairs and prepared ‘dinner.’  It was very sweet and thoughtful of him.. I really appreciated it.. but I couldn’t finish the meal.  It took a lot of concentration and persistence just to coax my body into “okay” ing applesauce.

It was Monday, so we were supposed to record the radio show at the church.  I didn’t want to be away from Chris, so in spite of my sick estate, I tagged along and cried, quietly, in the car – distressed at how often I feel this “kind” of sick and how unexplainable, unaccountable for

it is.

We arrived at the church and I hurried in to the bathroom, bracing myself for a possible and likely unpleasant experience.  I didn’t throw up, but the nausea remained.  Right outside of the bathroom is a couch.. and, dazed – in a sort of stupor, an altered state-of-mind – I stumbled over to it, laid down, and fell asleep.  I awoke to the sound of Kirstan (a friend of mine) and Chris asking if I was “okay” and my cell phone, ringing.  The nausea was gone,  I still felt exhausted.  I was hungry now.

“I’m taking you to Olive Garden,” Chris said.  I ate and retained what I ate.  I also thoroughly enjoyed it.



So yes – work, sucks.  I’m making good? money, but it isn’t “worth it,” you know?  I’ve applied at three other places for three different positions.. OTHER than serving:

1., at Whole Foods, for a cashiering job.

2., at a bank, for a teller position.

3., at the police station, for a dispatching job that pays 40k annually.  We’ll see what happens.  Hanging on to what I’ve got until the Lord gives me an opportunity to do something otherwise.

Aside from work.. school plans are unchanged.  I’ll be educating myself – following up on my own interests and pursuing my own inclinations – until the next fall semester.  I will then be, once again, a legal Alabama resident, capable, financially, of attaining a degree in teaching.  (The majors I’m planning on pursuing are education and English.  I love writing and teaching, and I always have, so I safely assume that I always will.)

Social-wise.. I’ve been too busy for friends.. sadly.  The only people I spend time with are Christopher and my mother, my two best friends.  Regarding the latter, our “time together” consists of (and is confined to) phone conversations, short emails and snippet, superficial text messages.  I hate living far away from my mother.  Sometimes, I question the timing of things..

but the evidence of God’s providence, leading and blessing..

is undeniable.

On the note of music, I’ve been too busy for it also, which upsets me.  The Lord reminded me recently, through my mother, that music is one of my gifts.. composition – songwriting – is a gift that I’ve been neglecting, and leaving undeveloped.  I have resolved to spend more time writing.. playing.. and feeling.  I am going to begin praying for songs again, like I used to.  I remember, very clearly, the Lord always answering those prayers.

In the name of RELIGION, I’m doing “better.”

Christopher and I both have been taking measures to read more, and better care for, our bodies.  I’ve been eating wayyy less sugar and more like a “100% vegan.”  I know it’s the right thing to do.  God is blessing.. I feel healthier, happier, and more clear-minded.

The plan for the holidays (only one of which I celebrate), is to stay in Alabama.  Chris and I both, this early in our working careers, aren’t able and can’t afford to take time off work.  We need to build up savings and a good relationship with our employers.  The plan is for Chris and I to drive down to Florida in January, when Micah and Amy will be visiting from NJ.  That way, it will be a “for real” family reunion.. I’ll see my parents, brother, grandparents, aunt, uncle(s) (if Junior is out of jail by then) and cousin again.

Isn’t life interesting?

Heartbreaking? momentous, defined, Beautiful?

It’s water-like.. in that,

it drips, it flows.

It rushes on madly, then stagnates.

It fights to go upward –

it finds it’s current tending, drifting, downward..

it’s pure, it’s unclean –

it’s black, it’s blue,

it can be small, or as large and full and without bounds

as infinity. -Aun Aqui (ARY)

“It occurred to me once, that love could be a great illusion, that makes fools of brilliant thinkers everyday.” -Copeland


(Note: credit for the PRECEDING pictures is not mine — it’s various Google photographers.)

This last picture..

mine.  -AA