A day that unravelled: part 2

A couple of weeks ago I had a doozy of a day. You can read the full blog post here, but in case you don’t feel like clicking there, I’ll give you another chance…

here.

OK then, if you’re still reading this, you REALLY don’t feel like clicking, do you? I’ll give you a very short recap. I woke up. Things were sweet. I did stuff. Then things spiraled out of control. I prayed. I went to bed. The day was just whatever.

The “take-away” was to start my day with prayer and even if drama happens, perhaps the day won’t unravel.

Now, to follow up: I hadn’t been paid for the work I did that dramatic day. So for days and days and days I went back and forth with Amazon about the 2 shifts that I definitely worked, yet they would barely even acknowledge my existence in the emailed responses. Formatted emails were what I was getting. It got to a point where it was just silly. I would ask them a very specific question that, if a person was actually reading, they’d have a very specific answer. Still,  nothing. Just vague emails with general policies.

I felt like I couldn’t win, but I wasn’t about to cave, either.

My prayer life was fervent because of this unproductive relationship I was having with Amazon. If there was any silver lining to the 2+ hours of volunteer work I had done for Amazon, it was this: a lesson learned about prayer and how the Bible says to “pray without ceasing.”

Now it’s been about 12 days since… and I have great news. Amazon, in their compassion (and perhaps annoyance of my constant nagging), decided to grant me a pay adjustment! Hallelujah there IS a God! So I totally got a two-fer… a lesson on the importance of praying and whatyaknow, I got paid to work. Crazy!

For being at the end of my rope and almost giving up, I’m grateful to God and the Amazonian who ruled the iron fist in my favor.

The take-away from part 2: well, I guess it’s something my brother told me years ago…

Work as though it all depends on you, and pray as if it all depends on God.

-Out of the Wilderness

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Sugarland’s “Babe” video: Stars, cars, and… a jaguar?

Everyone knows by now that Taylor Swift had a heavy hand in the direction of Sugarland‘s new “Babe” video… she co-wrote the song (along with Train’s Pat Monahan), sings background, and plays a role in the video. But there’s more to it! Check out some fun stuff below.


The cheating husband is Brandon Routh.


The first classic car in the video is either a ’63 or ’64 Lincoln Continental. I had a hard time narrowing it down with nothing to go on, really. Until I noticed the door handles. Take a close look and you’ll see the rear passenger door handle is right next to the front passenger door handle. Odd, right? Those were called suicide doors back then, and then I was able to find the Lincoln. The ’63 model seems a bit longer on the back end, so I’m leaning towards ’64 with this one.


The next car, driven by Jennifer Nettles as she meets her hubby at work, well, thanks to a comment below, it’s identified as a 1966 Ford Galaxie. It’s beautiful!

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Words from the second letter in Jennifer’s hand are lyrics of Roxy Music “My Only Love”.

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The house is the same one used as the set of Miranda Lambert’s “Mama’s Broken Heart” video, which premiered in March of 2013.


And is that a jaguar pin? Maybe a puma?

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-Out of the Wilderness

Are my dogs secretly vegetarians?

The funniest thing happened with my dogs recently. Before I tell the quick story, it’s important to remember they, especially regal beagle Piper, will eat almost anything. And I’m being very serious about that. ANYTHING. Think of the grossest thing you can come up with. Yeah, she’ll eat that.

So I came home from grabbing dinner with a friend, setting the doggy box of leftovers on a chest just next to the front door. I went to let the dogs out of their room and then to do a few other things around the house. They weren’t crazy about going outside so for about 10 or 15 minutes we all just puttered.

WAIT!!! I LEFT FOOD OUT!! Oh no. There goes my dinner for the next day. But I was definitely curious why I didn’t hear a familiar frenzied ruffle of paper or plastic bags being investigated by curious noses.

I immediately went to the box of leftovers. Untouched. Dogs acting as if it weren’t there at all. What? This was food they could have completely obliterated!

Now I know for sure they’re carnivores. The least picky eaters and they leave my tofu veggie roll completely undisturbed!?

I’ve decided to spend the rest of today being offended.

-Out of the Wilderness

A day that unravelled

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If the above statement is true, then the opposite must be true, too. I can offer some evidence for that because yesterday I felt like Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. But it started off so good! I woke up (that’s good). The weather was fantastic (also good!). I had some work scheduled (totally good!).

Before heading off to do said work, delivering for Amazon, I had a few hours to “putter,” as my mom would say. So I took the dogs to the dog park. We had a great ol’ time. I even spent entirely too much attention on a little slug we found.


I even had time for a short run before having to leave for Amazon.

Great morning, right? My day wasn’t unravelling at all! And I hadn’t even said one prayer yet. Maybe that famous quote is just an amusing tale. Maybe it’s just something people say because it sounds good. Maybe? Maybe not!

When I left for Amazon was the beginning of the unravelling. Most of the deliveries went fine until the last few. I had about 10 in an apartment complex, one that was set up with lockers for deliveries. I like lockers because the process is organized… usually. The Amazon app was having issues because of a few things which I won’t get into, so at the end of the 10 deliveries my screen was not showing the info it should’ve been. On top of that, I had one package to return to the warehouse because it was mislabeled. Not a terrible thing, but a nuisance for sure.

I returned that package and headed home. However, my Amazon app was still stuck on that wrong screen. No biggy, I thought.

Well, that screen made things more messy when I decided to pick up deliveries later in the day. The shift was 330pm to 430pm and routed me to downtown, tossing me into Nashville traffic on a horrifically high-volume day. I knew getting home would be a nightmare but I signed up for it, so I shrugged my shoulders and drove on. Traveling on the interstate towards downtown, I noticed the folks headed in the other direction were backed up for miles because of a wreck. Police everywhere. Lanes blocked. Of course, this was the very route I’d be taking to get home, so the high-volume I mentioned was compounded by less lanes. Great.

I had 3 addresses to deliver to, one of which was to a government building. Security had me sit and wait for a “supervisor” to let me up to the 8th floor. Ten minutes of sitting and then I was told I can’t go up. Meanwhile it’s already 445pm (15 minutes past when I was scheduled to finish), and I still had another delivery to do.

The last delivery went OK then I did my best to weave back to the warehouse to return the rejected government package. It took almost an hour to go 10 miles! But I managed to snag a 5pm to 630pm shift so I took some solace knowing I was still “on the clock.”

Once at the warehouse, the manager checked me in and so everything was returning to normal, or so I thought.

Later I returned home, mentally exhausted and needing to decompress from all the day had brought me. Come to find out, the 2.5 hours of work was not registered by Amazon. What!? I sat in an hour and a half of traffic, delivered packages and returned one, and none of it was recorded? I was on the verge of exploding about this. How am I supposed enjoy watching The Bachelorette– I mean, playoff hockey– now?

So that’s pretty much how my day went. Lots of detours, literally and figuratively, and I didn’t even pray until the very end of the day… when I was at the end of my rope and needed God to shoulder my burden, to soften hearts, to bring about justice. I think it would’ve been much better to start my day with prayer, not end it with prayer. Or better yet, start and end my day with prayer, and do it all the time in between, also. Isn’t that how one hems, anyway? Sewing all around the garment, not just on one side and the other.

Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-8

Now it’s the morning of the next day, issue still unresolved and the same anxiety is in my heart. Will Amazon treat me fairly? Will I be compensated for my work? At this point I don’t know. But I can say this and be sure about it, I don’t want today to go like yesterday did. So as soon as I post this, I’m bowing my head to start sewing prayers to my day.

[check out the follow up to this story here]

-Out of the Wilderness

Checking out Karen Kingsbury’s book tour in Nashville

A few days ago I barely tagged along with a friend for the Baxter Family Reunion. Now before you get ahead of yourself by assuming I was going to a real family reunion, you should know– as I learned that day– the Baxters are a made-up family about whom a million and a half books are written. The “reunion” is a book tour by author Karen Kingsbury, celebrating the release of her new book To The the Moon and Back* which I can’t wait to start reading!

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I said ‘barely went’ because, as is the case with me and social things, I don’t usually say yes quickly (unless it’s sand volleyball–always a yes). So I was reluctant to go but three things changed my mind…

  1. Read synopsis, got hooked…
  2. Francesca Battistelli singing…
  3. Took nap, dreamed I should go…

For being such a stubborn person, I’m glad I caved and attended this event! Francesca was great, she even did a performance of “Never Enough” from The Greatest Showman* soundtrack– a movie that’s already earned a spot in my top 5 all-time favorites. She was funny, too, along with having an amazing singing voice.

Then Mrs. Kingsbury took the stage for a Q&A with Francesca (or Franny as Karen and only the closest of friends call her), mostly about their relationship and Franc– Franny’s thoughts on the Baxter family. Mrs. K went on to tell stories from her life, about how she relates and connects with the characters she writes about, so real of a connection that when she had to write the death of one of them, she cried! That’s pretty wild but I’ve caught myself thinking about characters from another series I’m more familiar with (the Mitford series* by Jan Karon), and I remember once almost praying for one of them! Crazy.

She told an fascinating story about her father, his love for their family, his love for a Rod Stewart song, and how God shows up in her and her family’s lives daily, often with this song as a sweet reminder…


Throughout her talk she encouraged us to write a best-seller with the days of our life. I love how she presented that! But how do we do it? Here were her four points…

  1. Love well
  2. Laugh often
  3. Look for the miraculous
  4. Live your life for Jesus Christ because every story needs a hero

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If you have a chance to attend her book tour, give it a shot! I have a feeling you’ll be glad you did, just as I am!

-Out of the Wilderness

*Links to Amazon are part of my participation in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for this site to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com

I’ve got the Blues

As some of you know I deliver part time with Amazon when I’m not writing these amazing, insightful, mind-altering blog posts about how I embarrass myself so often, or about men’s underwear. OK so they’re not quite Shakespeare or Plato but sometimes I really want you to know about a bad date, or that my dog eats her own poop!

Back to the point… today I was in Smyrna, Tennessee for a delivery on a military base. When I told him my address, the gate guard told me to go to where the road looked like it ended, make a left, and deliver the package in the hangar that’ll be on my left. I did so, and when I walked in… I saw this.

Didn’t expect that, but it was awesome! This is one of the Blue Angels jets and I asked permission to take a few pics. My day was made.

-Out of the Wilderness