A Change of Plans

As of a month ago, Portland was going to be my forever  home. I've built the 20-something life of my dreams over the past 2 years, so how could I leave? But while applying for clinical fellowship's this semester, I kept hearing people mentioning, "Why don't you relocate?" "You could live anywhere, you should go on an adventure!" And my heart kept saying, "no, no, no. I don't want to leave. I'm too invested here. I LOVE it here!" 

Well God had something else in mind. 

Once I handed over the fellowship process to God and really listened to what He had to say to me, it was very clear what I had to do. And I didn't 100% like it. But I didn't absolutely hate it either. Basically he said:
 You're moving to California. And not only that, but you're moving back to Sacramento. You've got things to do there and people to see. Get going. 

Well shoot.

And guess what? The minute I applied within the area, I'm not even kidding you, the next day I got an interview and within the next few days I received a job offer. Now that's when you know you've been listening to the holy spirit. 

When I was trying to fight to stay in Portland, I kept hitting road blocks and found myself frustrated, beat down, and overwhelmed. Once I gave up control and really listened to the path He has for me (which took probably about a month tbh), the path became so clear and everything opened up. 

When I envisioned the summer ahead, I never saw definitive plans or imagined myself in Portland, strangely enough. But I didn't really think much of it. Now I know he was preparing my mind to move this summer back to the place I, honestly, said I would never move back to. 

Funny how that works. 

While leaving this place will be extremely hard, I feel incredibly blessed that it IS hard and that I've made such amazing friends, found a home church, invested in community, and really loved on this place. I will probably cry buckets of tears as I drive down I-5 but I know Portland is just a hop, skip, and a plane ride away. 

So there it is! Today was my last day of my full time externship, I graduate with my masters on May 20th, and I start my clinical fellowship this summer! Holy cow!! 


All of this to say, don't forget to take a minute everyday to sit and listen to what God has to say. He definitely wants to sit and talk with us and I bet you He has some big, important things to say to ya. :) 

*All photos by my friend Carson*

what is it about spring?

I adore Spring. Team Spring for life. 
But man, Spring loves throwing me for a doozy every. single. year. 

Maybe it is just being in my early 20's. Maybe it's because I went straight to grad school. 
Who knows.

Spring 2015: waiting to hear back from grad schools, insecure, living back at home, trying to figure out what my next steps would be, enjoying family time, making some money, etc.

Spring 2016: friend drama, tough classes and my first clinical placement, feeling unsure if I can do this whole speech thing, making great new friends, loving Portland, etc. 

Spring 2017: no classes only work, friends leave and friends stay, took on more volunteer roles, studied for comps, passed comps, applying to all the jobs, unsure of my next steps, etc. 

Somehow springtime always feels like this giant cliff edge. Come May there is the opportunity to jump off and skip to the next ledge or stay where you are and set up camp. This is where I'm at right now. 

I'm desperately trying to stop and listen to God because I know He always delivers. But my silly type-A personality always wants me to push harder, apply to more, be better, etc. I don't want to live a life based off of fear. So each day is a fun adventure in giving it up, handing it over to God, and sitting patiently. Then repeat the whole phase again because I wake up back in my anxious state. 

I don't know why I'm writing all this. I haven't written a post since February. I think this platform has always been a good mirror for me. Kind of a, "see Allie! Look how worried you were." 

Because here's the thing. I KNOW come sometime soon I will look back on this and laugh. I KNOW there's a plan. I KNOW I am in trusted hands. 

Oh Spring, you beautiful, flower filled season of uncertainty. Never change.

New Motivation


Several weeks ago I was talking to my friend about turning 24 and she made the comment that 24 was when she felt her body slow down and she had to actively work out more consistently. Now I don't know if it's because she said that or because it is really happening, but I feel like my body is slowing down. (honestly, I'm probably just thinking about it way more)

I've been really lucky all my life (and due to my athletic past) in that I've only had to worry about weight after I studied abroad in Italy and gained a few pounds. But now I feel this new urgency to be more intentional about how much I exercise and what I eat. (In case you're wondering, I'm still eating like a 12 year old with my constant treats and lunchable lunches. :) ) 

All of this to say, I am a Blacktag member at Core Power Yoga (the best!! kicks my butt all the time!) and partially because I feel I need to get my money's worth and partially because I feel sluggish more now than ever before, I'm trying to go 3 x a week. And normally my 23 year old year would say "ok perfect. that's all the exercise i'll do for the week!" but my 24 year old self feels the need to do more. So on Tuesday I went on a jog (my lungs started burning and I felt like I wanted to die but hey, I did it) and the last 2 days I've gone to yoga with plans to go tonight and on Saturday I'm snowshoeing! All of a sudden I look at myself and go "WHO AM I? 5 days of exercise??" 

And then at yoga last night the instructor walked us through the hurdler pose and the competitive part of me was all "YEAH! LET'S DO THIS! I CAN DO THAT!" so I tried it out. Let's just say it was a total fail haha. My teeny little arms could not hold up my body and I had to stop before I hurt myself. But instead of becoming discouraged or looking around and thinking "well all of them can do it, why can't I?" I just thought, "Guess I just need to work harder on my arm strength!" 
Guys. That's progress.

 (here's the hurdler pose for context. my face did not look like hers)

So what am I rambling on about? 
While I still wouldn't say I LOVE exercising in a forced way (take me on a hike, snowshoeing, long walk, roller blading etc. and I'm good!) I'm realizing how important it is and how much I want to be strong! I don't even want to focus on the weight part. I want to do the hurdler pose and not break my arms and I want to do a head stand consistently and I want to run without feeling like I am dying. 

What's motivating you? Why do you work out?

Looking Back on 2016

If 2015 was the year of change than 2016 was the year of travel and contentment. This was one of the best years yet. I went to a new country (Hey Canada!), spent time in 6 different states, visited 1 new state, fully dived into my career, made some amazing new friends, invested more in my church, and finished my last few classes that I'll ever have to take! 
Let's review:


My sister came to visit at the very beginning of the month, I celebrated my birthday in the city, some friends and I drove to Bend, I explored new trails in Portland, and I started my first clinical placement at a preschool and elementary school! Quite the eventful month.

Felt like Cinderella up in the snow, explored more parks in the city, went to Seattle with my parents for the first of 3 trips, and enjoyed the sunny days. 


March was busy with school but I did manage to sneak in a spring break trip to Tucson and see my best friends (the best!!) and admire my pretty campus on sunny days. 


April was beautiful! I indulged in some Pip's (my favorite!), ran my first 10k in tulip fields (!!!), hiked some more, and was a basic Portlander.


In May my best friend came to visit, my dad flew out to watch the Warriors vs. Trailblazers in a playoff game, finished my spring clinical placement, ran a 5k in the pouring rain, went to Yosemite with my family, celebrated 1 year of grad school being completed, watched my sister graduate and finally ended the month with some friends visiting and a trip to SF. Phew. What a month.


In June I went to the coast with my friend, watched the Rose Parade and the whole city was a rosy hue, explored some fun Portland activities, and my mom flew out to go wine tasting in the Willamette valley. Such a fun month. I also began my summer classes and my summer clinical placement this month.


July was another goodie! It started off with a road trip to the Painted Hills, some lake time, one of my oldest friends coming to visit, joining my family in Mendocino for my grammie's 80th, and some delicious wine tasting with friends!


August was possibly the best month! It started off with the end of my summer classes and clinical placement, a quick trip to the coast, a camping trip, 2 trips to Seattle, a road trip to Canada seeing Vancouver Island and Vancouver, an epic hike in the gorge, and the beginning of fall classes/ my fall placement. Holy moly.


September started off epic with a road trip to Crater Lake National Park and camping at Diamond Lake and then was filled with school, getting used to my clinic placement and lots of fun nights out with friends.


October started off with a spontaneous trip to Vegas to celebrate my sister's 21st, an amazing retreat with my church, lots of leaf pictures (this fall was unreal!!), and pretending I was eleven for Halloween. :)


I took more leaf pictures as fall was winding down, I went to Philadelphia for the first time for the American Speech-Language and Hearing Association conference, died over all of the cute Philly doorways, and went home for Thanksgiving to see the family. We ran a 5k the morning per tradition. :)


December was bittersweet and great. I finished up my last set of classes ever but also had to say goodbye to some friends until graduation. But I also got to attend some Christmas parties and spend time with my Portland family before I drove home for Christmas.

For some I know 2016 was a rough year but, at least on my end, when I look at these pictures all I can think is how blessed I was and how many amazing opportunities were placed in my path. I see no signs of any of this stopping in 2017.

I sincerely hope the beginning of 2017 has been restful and contemplative for you as well. Let's all show more love and give endless grace every day. On today, inauguration day, I really want to stress how crucial it is to be loving, caring, accepting, and gracious today and tomorrow.
Happy Friday!

Song Recommendation:
Berlin- Bears Den