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Thursday, May 26, 2011

The quirks and perks of Nashville!

... Living in Nashville ...

Since it's been about 4 years since I have lived in Nashville, there are some things I forgot about this beautiful city. Well, some things I forgot, and others I just didn't get the opportunity to experience the last time I was here. 

#1. Cicada's! 

 For those who don't know what a Cicada is ... lucky, lucky, lucky! They can be classified as locusts, however they have a hostile takeover every 7 years! (and when I say hostile ... I mean hostile). They are not the best of fliers, however they have no hesitation about flying INTO you at amazing speeds, land on you while make creepy and disturbing noises. I don't know if they have any real point or if they add anything to society, but they are EVERYWHERE ... and when I say everywhere ...
 what happens is, they attach to trees (hundreds on each tree), and make noises ALL DAY long! For those who have not been to the South, there are hundreds and thousands of trees, which means the hills are alive with the sound of cicadas! They shed their shell, which then falls to the ground (which you can see here). The shells then collect, by the pile full, around the bottom of every tree. At the end of the summer they will burrow back into the ground and come back in another 7 years! I can't wait!!!

#2. Lightning Storms
 One thing I had forgotten about Tennessee was the incredible lightning storms they have here!  I was driving home last night and there were the biggest flashes of light on either side of the road. The amazing thing is the lightning hit at least almost every 5 seconds. It was crazy to be in the MIDDLE of a lightning storm with bolts of lightning surrounding us on every side!
Soon after the lightning, thunder loud enough to shake my house could be heard (and felt). It was crazy! The thunder also rang through the air far longer than I have ever heard. Insane! The craziest things about the weather here is how fast it can change. One minute it could be barely sprinkling and the next, the wind is between 50-75 mph and the rain is coming down so hard, people have to pull over to the sides of the road because it's coming down in SHEETS! 

Last night was nuts, but a good reminder of how fast the weather here can change, and to be honest, kind of a cool experience! 

Though Tennessee has its quirks, it also has its perks. 
I love it here and could not imagine being anywhere else! 
Stay tuned ... there is more to come! 

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Alabama Tornado Relief

On April 27, 2011 312 tornados were spotted across several southern states in the United States. 226 occurred within a 24 hour period, killing at least 337 and reducing neighborhoods to rubble. This tornado storm was the second deadliest in US History and now holds the record for the most tornados ever recorded in a single day.

My friends getting ready to get to work!

40 of my friends and I had the great opportunity to drive 3 hours South of Nashville, Tennessee to Cordova, Alabama to help in the effort of cleaning up the town. I don’t know if we were prepared for what we saw: Roofs were torn off, homes were of their foundation or destroyed completely. Trees that once were located in the back yard had fallen THROUGH the house and now were resting in the back yard and the front yard (by way of the middle of the house). It was crazy and nothing like I’ve ever seen. Well as the saying goes, “A picture says a thousands words.” so here ya go!

This house looked like a bloomed flower.
The walls literally just fell out from the center!

This dress reminded me of the impact these
storms had on so many people's lives!

We ran out of room in the car, so we got put in the backseat!

It was AMAZING how many donations continued
to come in while we were there.
One day we spent hours and hours bring them into a building,
unpacking and sorting them. If you would like to know how to donate -
please go to

Thank you to all the volunteers from the Red Cross
and the rest of America for donating your time and money
to the people of Cordova and throughout other parts of Alabama!

"Who are we not to be ..."

"We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God." 
                                                                                  - Nelson Mandela