Common Sense

Livin' the dream with hakuna matata!


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In Limbo

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“Wait (v): Remain, expecting something.”

This is my senior year, the year growing up that I pinpointed as being the end of my childhood and final stop before leaving my home forever.

I’m not so sure why I thought that once I was handed that diploma that my life would be flipped completely and I would find myself in some big city, pursuing some grand dream. I just always did.

For the last 11 years of my life I’ve felt like I’ve always been waiting for something, the day I could take my training wheels off, the day I was old enough to go to sleepovers, get my license, take a theater class, and now…finish high school.

But I find myself in a place now that I can’t honestly say I like.

I’m still waiting, but this time it’s for something I can’t articulate.

Yes, I want to finish high school, but then what?

I’m getting the “What are you gonna do with your life?” question regularly and I have no answer to it. What am I supposed to say,”After high school I’m going to community college”?

Lame.

Contentment has always been difficult for me and I believe I’ve mentioned that on here before. Stuck is the word that keeps coming to mind and sometimes it seems like contentment and being stuck come hand in hand.

I can’t finish high school today and I can’t go to college tomorrow. I can’t pack up my room and move away next week. I can’t grow up today. I can’t move on to the next step in my life because I have to wait.

It feels like I’m pushing up against this wall, one that I can’t climb over or go around…I just have to wait for it to fall down.

A lot of days I wake up with this sick feeling, one that doesn’t have anything to do with the 37,000 Mike n Ike’s I ate the night before. It’s this feeling of being in limbo. I’m trying to pray and ask God for clarity and contentment, but so far He’s chosen not to give it to me. That’s ok! I know He will someday…but I’m learning more and more that His will is often revealed in hindsight.

So I just need to wait.

While I feel like I’m ready for the next step, whatever step that might be, sometimes I think…..um. no. you are not. I question whether I’m mature enough….have I grown up enough during the last few years to even be ready for what’s next? Maybe God hasn’t opened any doors because I need to develop some ability or character quality more fully. But which one? All of them?

Frankly, I feel like I’m going out of my mind.

But if you think you’re insane doesn’t that mean you’re not insane?

Or if you think you’re insane when you really are insane doesn’t that just mean that you’ve broken the fourth wall?

Wait, what is the fourth wall?

Is it broken?

…………………………………………………………………………………I need a hobby.

As the youngest, I’ve always felt like I was behind. Like, I need to be at this certain place in my life because that’s where Hannah is or I need to have that particular level of maturity because that’s how Jesse is. But I often forget, that’s not where I am. God hasn’t called me on the same path that my siblings are on. My life is going to look at lot different from theirs.

brandy-melville-usa

I need to be content.

I need to stop putting so much stock in my feelings and just do school, work, and eat mike n ikes. 😀

God will show me where I’m supposed to be and what I’m supposed to be doing.

I just have to wait.

……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….

Thank you for listening to my thoughts, did any of them make sense? Probably not.

This blog is basically my journal so I’m sorry if you got lost in the airing out of my mind….or what’s left of it.

Have a very happy halloween, and don’t go into the woods with any clowns.

~Susanna

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Living Fully, Genuinely, and in the Present.

 

“But, for a Christian, there are, strictly speaking no chances. A secret master of ceremonies has been at work. Christ, who said to the disciples. ‘Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,’ can truly say to every group of Christian friends, ‘Ye have not chosen one another, but I have chosen you for one another.’ The friendship is not a reward for our discriminating and good taste in finding one another out. It is the instrument by which God reveals to each of us the beauties of others.”

~ C. S Lewis, The Four Loves

The Tribe

These are some of the people that have truly made an impact in my life this past year. I’ve never been one to be very close to anyone outside of my siblings. While I’ve always loved my friends and enjoyed being with them…I’ve honestly never needed them. That sounds terrible, right? Well, it’s just that when you have 6 older siblings, you don’t really have the time or energy to put into many relationships outside of those 6. At least I didn’t…until recently.

I expected growing up to be this grand adventure, full of new things and exciting opportunities…And it is! But I’ve also found myself saying goodbye a lot more than I anticipated. Being the youngest in a large family has it’s benefits! In fact, it’s been a pretty stress-free life. 🙂 There is one thing that has been difficult however, and that’s watching all of my older siblings and best friends move on and move out. In August I’ll be the last of the Fox kids living at home. I’ve always known that that was coming and it used to scare me because I thought that at that point I’d be alone. This past year however, God has brought those in the picture above and more into my life to replace those that He’s taking out. These friends don’t share the same blood as me, but their hearts belong to same One that mine does.

The Very Best

Friendships aren’t easy. Loving people unconditionally is inconvenient and sometimes a real pain in the butt. It’s hard not to give up on someone or to not write them off as a waste of time. There are times when it’s really easy to tear someone apart behind their back or to their face…but that doesn’t mean that you should. I’m not always a good friend, in fact, most of the time I’m a pretty terrible one….But thankfully God has placed some really patience, kind, and stubborn people in my life. People that have invested in me far more than I could ever in return.

I’ve learned this past year that it’s ok to open your heart to those outside of your family. That being vulnerable, while terrifying, is necessary to building a solid relationship. I’ve learned that people are quick to forgive if you simply ask for their undeserved forgiveness.

Jess and I

I’ve learned that everyone comes from different backgrounds, they each have different stories and standards, and each person views the world in a very different light. But just because someone is different from yourself doesn’t mean that they can’t invest in your life in ways you’d never expect. Being friends with someone doesn’t mean that you’re going to agree on everything…it just means that you hear their beliefs and listen to their hearts. That doesn’t mean that you have to believe everything that they do is right, or that you have to compromise your standards in order to be with them.

Does that make sense?

I guess what I’m trying to say is to look for the beauty in those around you…and if what’s inside of them is more beautiful than ugly, then those are the people that you should cultivate a friendship with.

Mama

Friendships are supposed to last through the good and bad, and honesty is one of the most vital parts to sustaining that friendship. There have been times when I’ve called some of these gems, crying about something that was bothering me or yelling/screaming because I’d just found out some fantastic news! (happy = loud for me…sorraay. :D) I think I’ve found that friendship is complicated, difficult, and so very worth it. When we’re eating popsicles in the Target parking lot, or having a paint war on a summer night, or driving in the country with the windows down…those are the moments when I think I feel most alive. Those moments when we’re excited about being young and being together, those are the ones that I think I’ll always remember. Our childhoods are short and I’m grateful for that..Because I think if they were longer than we wouldn’t appreciate how important it is to enjoy each day.

Being friends doesn’t mean that we’ll always be together, I know some of you will move away this next year…and while I’m dreading more goodbyes, know this: just because you’re moving away doesn’t mean that we won’t be friends anymore. It just means that the times between games of truth or dare may be a bit longer. 😀

So, while we’re young and because it’s summer, let’s make the most of the time we’ve been given…because it’s a precious gift, and it’ll be gone before we know it.

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Here’s to making each moment count, and to doubling Bernie’s milage this summer. 😀

~Susanna (Seuss, Susu, Robin, Karen, Stitch, SueQ, Doc. Que, Nudder Budder, Tink, Hops, and Abilene)


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Summer of 2015

“Sometimes you will never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory.”

-Dr. Seuss 

South Africa #1

The fact that I was in South Africa just a few months ago is…surreal. Sometimes I don’t even believe that it happened.
We were able to visit different ministries and missionaries, work in preschools, high schools, and churches. We climbed a literal mountain and walked the streets of the most beautiful place on earth.

I learned several things that trip:

  1. Don’t look lions in the eye.
  2. Airplane bathrooms are not your friend.
  3. Stay away from skinny homeless men in Cape Town, lest they attack you with a 2×4.
  4. The toilets do not flush the opposite way in SA (so disappointed).
  5. Missionaries are some of the most genuine, patient, and peaceful people I’ve had the pleasure of meeting (at least the ones I met were).
  6. Take. Drugs. On. Airplanes…….Do it. Don’t question me, just do it.

Sorry that wasn’t real spiritual and deep. But hey, you’re enlightened now right? Right.

Annual Fox Family Beach Trip: 

Lookin Gud. Real Gud.

Thanks family, for telling Judah and I that we were standing a mile from the rest of the family.

Beach week is always such a highlight in my year, it’s becoming more rare that all of the family can be in one place at the same time, which makes this week even more spectacular. Ya wanna know what else is spectacular?

My kayaking skills.

Once upon a time….I went kayaking with Hannah and the man. We went out probably 12 miles and were just goin’ in circles, enjoying life. Well the man eventually decides to get OUT of his kayak and swim. You should have seen how big my eyes were, I mean REALLY. Haven’t you seen Jaws? But anyway, by some miracle he survived and we started to head back to the beach. I decided, hey I’m kind of a pro at this by now…Imma ride a wave in.

………………………………………….

Never be ambitious.

Life lesson kids.

No sooner had I made that life-altering choice than I was swept up into a Tsunami. As my ship flipped and the water came crashing over me, I looked back on my life.

I’ve done nothing.

No accomplishments.

My body was turned and beaten and battered. I couldn’t feel my legs and my lungs were filling with water. As I looked at the surface of the water, 20 feet above me, I said goodbye to sunshine, love, and happiness, and said hello to the cold darkness of my grave.

But then I stood up and realized that I was in a tide pool.

Well, besides the funeral of my desire to swim, we had another event!

This….how should I put this…..gorgeous couple decided to like each other for the rest of their lives.

Uke and Rachel

Y’all. I’m so happy. They are just treasures and I’m just thrilled that they will never be able to get rid of me.

A Fireman and a Fox

The last event of our summer was one we had been working on and anticipating for months.

The nuptials of a brown-haired, tan girl from North Carolina and a brown-haired, lanky boy from Kansas.

Beauty. Pure beauty.

The fact that my greatest and truest friend now is a “Mrs,” just makes my year.

She is genuine, beautiful, smart, funny, and the highest gem on my list. Their happiness and married bliss is just radiant. May they always look at each other the way that they do now, and may their days be filled with adventure.

Hannah and Isaiah. Y’all get ready. I’ll just be poppin’ out of the bushes every weekend.

Well, I hope I’ve given you all a taste of my summer, it was one of the greatest of my entire life.

Hakuna Matata Y’all.

~Susanna

 

 

 

 


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Robin Hood

Acting is, “Living truthfully under imaginary circumstances.” -Meisner 

Back in March I was cast as Robin Hood in the play, “Robin Hood.”

I had only been in two plays previous to this one so getting the lead was completely unbelievable for me. I didn’t know where to start, should I memorize my lines first or figure out the accent? Should I study the myth of Robin Hood or analyze the script? What about the fight scenes? I don’t even know what a parry is!

WHAT ABOUT MY HAIR?

I had a couple freak outs.

When I began to study my character and figure who he was, I realized that I’m a lot more like Robin than I had thought. He’s a leader, sarcastic, loyal, and incredibly handsome.

Qualities God has also given me.

Still, I had a long way to go.

1. I sound like a little girl.

2. I walk, stand, and sit like a girl.

3. I’m an American.

So I began working on deepening my voice, I watched my brothers and total male strangers…how they walked, stood, and sat. I studied the British (they’re just so much better than Americans, let’s be honest).

Robin Hood #1

Finally it was tech week and time to showcase what I had learned.

Now, I’m sure I still sounded kind of like a girl and my accent was….awful.

I made many mistakes: almost killed people during fight choreography, went out of character on stage, forgot my blocking and lines, I went totally diva on my directors and fellow cast members, and I’m sure many other things that I’m not even aware of!

But despite all my shortcomings, I became Robin Hood.

Robin Hood #5

The shows went so well. I could not have been more happy with how everything turned out! My fellow cast members have all been blessed with a talent and love for acting and it is so much more enjoyable to be around people who love what they do.

Before joining acting back in January I had not been in play for the last three years and coming back has brought to my memory exactly why I love acting. It’s the “oh I’m gonna HURL!” moment before the curtains open, the late nights scrubbing off make-up in the dressing room, the last bow with the entire cast, but mainly for me…It’s the people. You have a choice at the beginning of tech week, you have to decide if those people are going to become your best friends or the people you’d punch if you didn’t love Jesus.

I was lucky, the cast for Robin Hood are now some of my closest friends on earth.

Robin Hood #2 Robin Hood & SheriffRobin Hood & FriarRobin & Judy
This guy was with me through the whole show, giving me much needed tips on my character, helping with nerves, getting me pumped up before each show, and driving me everywhere I needed to be! I love ya Judah!

The Best of the Best:

The Best of the BestFull Cast

 

 

God put each and every actress, actor, director, producer, costumer, photographer in the exact place they needed to be and used them to his glory in the lives of the people they were around.

These two friends especially will be greatly missed. They have become good friends to me these past few months not only in the play but off stage as well. Go out and represent Arts Alive to the world lady friends!

Robin Hood & Will ScarlettRobin Hood & Maid Marian

 

Finally, all praise and credit goes to God for giving me the opportunity and ability to play Robin Hood.

Curtain Call

I can’t wait to see what He has in store next.

Hakuna Matata,

~Susanna


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The Best Time of My Life

Frands.

This past weekend my sister and I changed the world.

New normal

We began on Friday, after a chick-fil-a run (not a real run, mind you), and drove 8 hours to the gorgeous city of Nashville, TN.

We landed on a super sketch motel, where I debated putting the dresser in front of the door. I had to nix that idea though, I can’t lift anything over 10lbs, tops.

Saturday began with a lil T n V  (spongebob rocks my world) and then the touring began!

Let me just say, I adore big cities. It’s an obsession.

It helps if the city is as magnificent as Nashville. My favorite part of town has got to be Broadway St. it’s the perfect balance of big city and small town.

nashville-1

 

IMG_0566

 

 

But let’s be honest, half the people that work in those bars have never been sober in their lives.

stay-classy-51

That afternoon we went to the Country Music Hall of Fame, I was in awe, as in mouth open and stumbling kind of awe, it was incredible. And I’m so happy that the exhibits were about the true country artists and their music. It wasn’t all just a bunch of Taylor Swift crap (sorry mom, I mean crud).

IMG_0507 IMG_0508 IMG_0510 IMG_0513 IMG_0494  <<THE blue suede shoes.

IMG_0500<<<Hall of Records

The Hall of Fame,

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Then came the real dream of dreams.

The Gaylord Opryland Hotel  

IMG_0557 IMG_0556 IMG_0549 IMG_0562 IMG_0560 IMG_0559

 

oh wonderful mercies.

If you think Holiday Inn is pretty sweet (FYI, I do.) then you have not been to the gem of the crown in hotel heaven.

It fulfilled every dream I have ever had about life really.

photo 4     photo 3

Now, frands. Come into my truth circle.

I am not boy crazy. I’m really not.

But at this hotel, low and behold I spot a fair-haired beauty in the distance.

Granted, chances are he was probably in his twenties.

Engaged, I shouldn’t wonder.

BUT here’s how the scene played out, he comes striding down the hall towards me and we arrive at the elevator at the same time (the girl in me squeals). It only has room for one more person (curse those clearly overweight women inside). And like the true gem I’m sure he is, he let me go instead of him. So boldly I step inside just as the elevator door slams into me. Concussed, I turn and never see prince charming again.

I realize after I have written this that it sounds like I was speaking of a dog, you will never know the truth.

“CHESTER!!”

Moving on.

We went to a Dierks Bentley concert on Sunday, it was the icing on the cake.

We came home exhausted, (bless my sister Hannah, she drove for roughly 30 hours the whole weekend combined.) but again, it was everything I have ever dreamed of.

And we truly had the time of our lives,

photo 5

Hakuna Matata,

Ciao baby!
~Susanna

 

 

 


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I’m really an excellent driver…

I got my permit 18 days ago.

Clinically Insane

First day I took a turn going 30 mph and my dad died of a heart attack in the passenger seat.

Second day I drove 5 mph in a 50 mph speed zone.

That was a personal win.

Interstate day was rough,

Cruise Control

But I think my parking is improving.

Parking's Hard.

Maybe.

Other people apparently don’t agree with me,

Stevie Wonder #2

But at least they didn’t disagree for very long,

My Car

So, who wants to car pool?

Hakuna Matata all,

Ciao Baby!

~Susanna

 


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I Sell Stuff.

Well, I’ve finally succumbed to “Susie Homemaker.”

Not only am I knitting, but now I’m selling my finished products.

Actually it’s pretty exciting. 🙂

So, check out my new Etsy store, because it’s awesome.

https://www.etsy.com/shop/CommonSenseCo

Photo on 2014-08-14 at 11.15 #3

 

I even have a couple employees,

Remember her?

old-woman-knitting-

We’re a party and 1/2.

Well, gotta go make a couple dozen hats,

Hakuna Matata,

Ciao y’all!

~Susanna