Wednesday, January 29, 2014

The one where I ask you for help (#RiskRejection)

{Amy Sullivan asked us if we would #RiskRejection and try new things, even if we knew we might not succeed.  Amy did not know when she asked me to participate is that I do not even ask for extra condiments if I fear being told "no."  But what Amy does know is that if God relentlessly hammers me asks me to do something, I will, which is why I have been embarking on adventures off the designated trails and into the scary wilderness where I might emerge humiliated badly scratched refined.}
I'm taking a risk by trusting you.

Yep, see, my One Word this year is FUN! and let's just say I'm a little short of ideas on how to have it.

I'm a pretty introspective person.  I am well-versed in my flaws.  I'm confident in my spiritual gifts.  But when God plopped this FUN! word in my lap, I kinda just stared at it as it morphed into some alien with three heads.

To tell the truth, I didn't want to touch it.  Much like you wouldn't want to touch an alien, I suppose.

God's been super faithful with me so far in this new FUN! adventure.  He told me to go get a pedicure.  FUN!  My husband invited me to go get some Dim Sum, which I had never experienced before, with him on date night.  FUN!

God's also been super graceful with me about it so far, too.  Last week, I defiantly told God I had no time for FUN! and didn't have any at all.  (It ended up being a stressful, sucky week, too.)  But, He's totally forgiven me and is ready to start anew.  He's tenacious like that.

My plan this week is to take myself on a date to Hobby Lobby and peruse the aisles. I love to craft and I'm thinking I'll find something FUN! to do with my hands.

But this, friends, is sadly where my ideas have ended and I'm pretty sure if I don't have ideas lined up, I'll end up defaulting to, um, work.

I sound lame, I know.

But it's okay because it's created a way for me to take a real risk.  And that's the theme of January thanks to Amy.  What is this risk?

I want to try your ideas for FUN!  And I'm seriously committed to trying new things because that's how we get to know what we like and don't like, right?  I need to know myself in the area of FUN! but I need you to help me get there.

So here's how this is gonna work.  In the comments, would you please leave me ONE idea for FUN! for me to try.  I'll try one idea per week and blog about it, letting you know how it went, what I learned, how God met me in that activity.

Some parameters first:

1.  It cannot involve risking my life.  (I have little peeps that depend on my being alive.)
2.  It cannot be cost-prohibitive.  (This blogging/speaking thing doesn't bring in the cash to support outlandish, lavish adventures.  Or things like skydiving.  Plus, you know, the husband has access to the credit card statement...)
3.  It has to be something that you have tried before.  Because, we need to be able to compare experiences.  That sounds like FUN! to me.

(I'm also kinda feeling like this is a risk to even ask you because you might think this is totally lame and no one will leave a comment.  Just being honest with this whole risk-taking adventure here.)

Oookkaayyy -- I'm ready for you.  Give me whatcha got.

Linking with Linking up with Amy for #riskrejection. And also with Emily for Imperfect Prose, Jennifer Lee for #tellHisstory, Michell for DYWW,  Women to Women Sharita for Everyday Jesus, and Lyli for Thought Provoking Thursday.


  1. ask a friend to do a photo shoot with you as the subject!
    my husband and I needed pics of the two of us together for our prayer letter/prayer cards and when a friend came to snap some photos I had more fun that I could have imagined. She set us in various places in our large farm yard and we ended up with some truly wonderful pictures.

    1. We just had family pics done, but we were also shooting for our author photo for the book. I've never done a solo photo shoot just for fun. This makes me have butterflies, but I can so see how it would be very fun. I'll take this idea!

    2. Something I've always wanted to do is go to various Austin icons (like grafitti walls and such) and have my picture taken, so you could do that, which would be fun traveling all over Austin, and you might end up with some great photos as well. Just thought I'd offer a suggestion that would be different from your typical photo shoot. ;)

  2. Make a playlist of songs that you cannot help but to move to (think Beatles, disco, etc) and play it LOUD while you clean/sing/dance at the same time.

    1. I always take my cleaning too seriously. And never dance while I'm doing it. This is going on the list.

  3. Very fun! Uhm, I love to have fun with making things, like homemade noodles/nutella/marshmallows. Or canvases where you paint over stickers then peel them off. Or do fun-themed 5K's, even if you walk it. Or celebrate wildly for a not-so-wild holiday, like Yom Kippur or Ramadan or President's day. Or host a partay - themed! Very fun. Send a non-IRL bloggy friend a surprise gift, just small things you like. Have friends over for a pin-did party. make a meal entirely in a single color. OH! I want so badly to do a progressive dinner - one place for appetizer, one place for salad, one place for entree, one place for dessert, etc. I'd do that "with" you! That's all I've got right now. Hope it helps!

    1. I have a friend who hosts a Groundhog's Day Party every year. Kind of funny, but it's a tradition. She's been doing it for like 15 years!

  4. Declare a day long sabbatical/vacay and have a movie marathon. Go to Barnes and Noble just to drool over the books and drink a Starbucks. Go on a walk-- just a walk, not for distance or time, and look around, counting/writing down all of the cool #1000gifts you encounter. At least one night a week, have hubs watch the kiddos (or wait til they are in bed), run a bath, light some candles, shut the door and chill out (glass of wine and/or piece of chocolate is optional.)

    I could go on all day-- so excited that your word is challenging you, Jen-- and it is inspiring me to seek more fun in my life too!

  5. I am beginning to think I am no fun! Can't think of anything original to say. I did go sledding with my grandkids the other day and it was fun making snow angels!

  6. Visit this website and search your area for a strange something you've never seen, before. Visit and photograph it with every expectation that you'll legitimately appreciate it.

    1. Let me know if you need more ideas, by the way. Fun is my one area of expertise. Seriously.

    2. This is a GREAT idea Brandee! There are so many things in our very city I have never seen. I'm going to look some up! :)

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  7. Great idea! Like you, I can work work work, mostly because I really love what I do. But it's not good to doit nonstop, even if you love it. You need to step back and remember what just doing nothing is like. It gives God room to speak, too. I've made it one of my missions the past couple years to never have to regret not doing something when had the chance. It's led me to ziplining, talking to strangers (terrifying!) and holding a tarantula (words escape me. except where I wrote all about it on my website :) ) So I am cheering you on in this adventure of FUN!

  8. Go on a "treasure hunt" - I learned this while nannying and discovered I had more fun than the kids. Take a special container to hold your finds & a camera and pick a trail you've never walked (if you want include friends/ kids/ etc) and then search for something that sparkles, something that reflects, something you've never seen. Take pictures. Then if you really want to ramp it up, put together a small shadow box/frame about the day with a verse that God spoke to you that day.

    Marissa D

  9. My suggestion is finger paint with your kids!

    It is so cool how God lines everything up - I was just thinking today about trying to have more fun and more joyful. Your post just gave me the push I needed to keep on listening and leaning in to what God's telling me.

    I was so busy for a while and had to take a break from blogging, but I'm back to writing again and happy to be back! Are you still doing small groups through e-mail?

    1. P.S. -
      My new site is
      I'm not sure how to leave comments besides my old blogger account. :)

  10. You and your planned fun kills me. You know what else kills me? The rule about only leaving ONE idea. Therefore, I am breaking it.

    You want fun? You have come to the right place.

    1. Grab your friend, husband, or any human, and go find music you have never heard before and then stay and listen to an entire set.
    2. Try a sport you have never played before. Raquet ball, badminton, shuffle board.
    3. Have a themed party. Game night, an 80s party in which you have to dress up, a bridesmaid party in which you need to wear an old bridesmaid dress. All of the above are personal faves.
    4. Sneak into a local hotel (take your kids) and use their pool. This is super fun and no one will suspect you because you have your smiling children with you.
    5. Rollerskate. It is not humanly possible to roller skate and not have fun. Oh, and ask them to play "Eye of the Tiger"

    Should you need more ideas. You know where to find me.

    PS I fully expect pictures (and lots of them) of the above mentioned fun.

    1. Ooh! Jen! I've played before, but it's been a long time, but we should play disc golf! CPMS just installed a disc golf course! I think we may still have some discs somewhere from college. LOL! Bocce ball is another fun game. Don't they have shuffle board at Brushy Creek Lake Park?

  11. All I can say is I better be included in some of this fun! Running 17 miles uphill both ways was NOT fun! LOL! I'm breaking rules too.
    1. It is a little pricey, but Painting with a Twist has always sounded like fun, but only with LOTS of wine and friends.
    2. Prepare a "mixed up" meal with your family. You can Google this, but basically, all the foods and utensils, etc... are named different things, and everyone gets to choose 4 at a time. You might have to eat your soup with a fork or get dessert first or something crazy like that. Your kids would love it, and there would be lots of laughs. The best part is that you can make the meal something simple (since I know you love to cook) like hot dogs and mac n cheese and brownies. I ran across this idea while helping a friend plan her daughter's birthday party. You could do this for your theme night.
    3. Take a cooking class at Central Market or a cake decorating class at Michael's or something like that
    4. Sculpt something out of clay. If you use the kind you can bake, then you can even "fire" it, then paint it (two days of fun!)
    5. Make up some silly games/contests and play with your family
    6. Allow your girls to do your hair and makeup
    7. Go for a bike ride on Town Lake Trail on a nice day
    8. Go somewhere and take some artistic photos with Craig's new camera ;)
    9. Go canoeing or kayaking
    10. Go for a hike or trail run on a trail you have never been on

    OK, that should keep you busy! Honestly, I've done very few of these things myself. I guess I'm also not very fun. :(

  12. One more....make flubber, then play with it! I like pink best. :)

    1. And another....karaoke! You can just come to my house instead of doing it in public. ;) Karaoke is always fun (or funny) for the participants AND the listeners!

  13. Come to Kentucky. :) OK, you know, after our texting conversation I couldn't resist.

    Here are other ideas ...

    Go roller skating.

    Scrapbook even if you have dishes waiting on you.

    Play a game with your family after dinner before actually cleaning up dinner.

    Binge watch a TV show with Craig.

    Go out to breakfast just because.

    I have bungy jumped. And it was fun. :)

  14. 1. Tobogganning with the kids is simple and free - you just need a snowy hill. We have one right across the street and the rush is like a roller coaster - simple fun for all ages and very small risk. I am amazed at how it helps me let go.
    2. When I need a belly laugh I watch an episode of America's Funniest Home Videos - kills me every time. Not risky but FUN!

  15. In the art aisle,they have special chalks that are brilliant - and this eraser that is like gum that you keep folding and folding and it cleans itself. I love chalk art. Grab a sketch pad that has thicker paper, a can of stuff you spray on your chalk when your done so it doesn't blow away. Pick one color - and color the entire page - then start erasing - maybe for a heart, a cat - and everything ebbs out of me as I erase, erase and erase:) Have FUN!!!!!

  16. I like Amy's risk of swimming in a hotel's also so much fun when you have little kids to play tag in a hotel (but you might get kicked out), my family did this when we were little. It was so much fun. Every year. We didn't get kicked out, but the place got knocked down a few years ago. I can't help but wonder if the management wasn't on their game too much. I also love crashing wedding receptions.
    I like dancing around my house and recently playing Just Dance, as a couple very simple ones. And Zumba dance. With people who are actually good, I make up my own moves.
    Um...taking an improv class is fun.
    Having a progressive dinner I hear is fun. I want to try this. I think someone else mentioned it.
    I really need to take some of this ideas, too, Jen...I am right there with you :). Great post!! Need some follow up ones for sure ;)

  17. I LOVE YOUR WORD!!! GOOD FOR YOU!! I am such a workaholic, I don't feel I deserve 'fun' at times- or I have to 'earn' it... so I can absolutely relate to your goal!

    Does fun always have to be out of your home? How about inviting a few close friends over for coffee and chocolate? BOTH are my faves- and friends just add the real flavor!! Who doesn't like those three together?

    (Visiting from PYHO!)

  18. Our lives are so very different, thus our ideas of fun are so very different. I don't know "fun" as urbanites know "fun"; my idea of fun is mucking out the barn, dogs, cats, sheep, alpacas and horses gathering too close, nudging me, wanting to see what I'm doing and then demanding treats.
    Urban fun for me is visiting a book store, buying a cuppa and perusing magazines. Or shopping at a thrift store and finding a wonderful deal.
    I'm not keen on Amy's #4...that's theft and should you be found out, the hotel staff could call law enforcement. Around here, some properties sell day passes to use their pool.

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  21. Have you ever seen 13 going on 30? There's this one scene where the main character invites the female teenagers within her apartment complex, to her apartment. They dress up in boas, hats, bras, have purses,the teenagers dressed up in her clothes, and they all dance and lip sync to "Love is a Battlefield" by Pat Benatar. I say you should something like what with your daughter.

    Here's the link to the scene, if you want to watch it. ;-)

    I haven't tried it but now that I mentioned to you, I may as well try it on a Saturday when it's just my daughters and I.

  22. Jen -
    House Swap.
    I'm not even remotely kidding. I live up in the mountains of Colorado, knee-deep in gorgeous white snow, about an hour & a half from prime ski resorts like Breckenridge, Copper Mtn, and our local (small & inexpensive) fave - Ski Cooper.
    We are looking for a place to stay IN AUSTIN for the last week of March. (March 24-28 - coming there for my parent's 50th anniv)

    Can you say Spring Break SKI TRIP????? Now I know, there's probably a thousand reasons why NOT...but would it really be so bad to take the kids out of school (what a FUN adventure!!), drive about 14 hours (that's how long it takes us, with 7 kids in a big van), and have the snow adventure of a lifetime, with a FREE place to stay????

    I'm really & truly SO serious. Our house isn't fancy-smancy, but it's big & cozy & fun - 4800 sq. feet, five bdrms, 4 baths, on six acres - with sled hills & hiking trails right out the back door (we back up to Pike National Forest). If you go the inexpensive route - Ski Cooper is close, has awesome-cheap ski rentals, and great slopes for kids. If you want to make it fancy, Breckenridge is less than 2 hours away, and one of the best ski areas around.

    Wouldn't that be FUN?????
    Okay, seriously. Email me if there's any remote possibility we could make it happen...!!!

  23. Collage a page using magazine images and words to make a visual aid of what is Fun for you! I find collage art fun and inexpensive...usecwhatbu have to decorate the page if you want like crayons or markers but a glue stick scissors and old magazines and a piece of paper is all you really need :)

  24. Grab either your hubby or a friend, go to the mall (or a store of your choice) and try on lots of different outfits together and take pictures like you're really posing for something. . . . maybe post them on social media or on here. So maybe dress up like you're going to a wedding, a prom, to the beach, skiing. . . . .

  25. Spend the day shopping for small, inexpensive items to put together a gift basket for a friend who needs a smile. Then leave it on their porch, ring the doorbell and hide. Best. Fun. Ever.

    Something else we enjoy doing is called Geocaching. Basically people hide these treasure boxes all over the world, then they post the GPS coordinates and clues online and you go on a hunt. You find the box, take a treasure and leave a treasure and sign the little guest book inside. It's a great way to see some places in your local area that you may never have explored or known were there. My kids have a blast choosing the items to leave and take.

  26. Oh goodness girl, not sure if I am the idea of FUN! ;) Some things I love, going to highschool sports games. It is so fun to wear their colors and cheer them on! And having friends or family over for junk food and card games! :)

    Thank you for linking up with Woman to Woman's Word Filled Wednesday. God bless.

  27. I am with Jenifer and don't feel like I an overflowing with fun ideas but one thing that is fun for me is to go to a store like Home Good and buy something fun to decorate with. I enjoy a new look be it my 5 inch glass snail in my window or a holiday themed candy dish filled with seasonal fun! Good luck! Love, Rachael @ Inking the Heart

  28. Oh my, you are getting quite a few ideas here, huh? Ok, well in addition to the ones I have already shared with you via e-mail here are 3 more:

    1. Play 52 flip. Go for a drive with your kids and your husband. At every stop light, flip a coin -- heads is a left turn; tails is a right turn. Do this 52 times. Wherever you land is the "spot" for the evening. (We ended up at a McDonalds.... )
    2. Play that "guess what day we spent together I am thinking about game." Have Craig think about an event from your past history -- it can be any day or event that you have spent together since you met. You have to guess what day he is thinking about. You can ask Yes or No questions to try to figure out what day he is remembering. Once you figure it out, then you would think of a memory, and he would ask you questions.
    3. Once the weather warms up a bit, put the girls to bed. Get in your jammies. Take a blanket outside in the backyard and grab your husband on the way out. Lay down, look up, and count the stars. Make a wish. Say a prayer. Think about how big God is and how far He has brought you.

    Thanks for linking up at Thought-Provoking Thursday!

  29. Sign up for a Color Run or some other Walk/Run 5K. Then dress up with some ridiculous accessories to participate--feather boas, oversized sunglasses, etc.. We have a Superhero 5K here, where, obviously, the runners are encouraged to dress like superheroes. What's more fun than being a grown-up superhero??

  30. Going somewhere beautiful with your camera, going thrifting with a friend, watching a funny old movie (Jerry Lewis?), get some paints and a canvas or water colors and paper and try painting!

  31. I got some good ideas reading everyone's comments! I'm not so good at "fun" either. Especially this time of year when we are buried in snow and the temps have been -20. Maybe I should make fun my word this year too!

  32. I know, I know... I already stopped by this week. But I had to come back to see what incredibly fun ideas were shared (like, a ton of them!) plus to say thanks for connecting with our #EverydayJesus link-up on Thursday. So appreciate your faithfulness and participation, Jen. Love to you!

  33. Jen - Not sure I have any super exciting ideas like the ones in the comments prior (our FUN has been Jenga, UNO, and Chinese Checkers lately) but I do know I love how you stretch out of the box, engage your readers, and are always working to grow and be the fullness of who God made you! Now that is something worth emulating! All of that...(minus the marathon) lol :) Loved sharing this risk rejection journey with you Jen!


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