In the last five days I have received not one phone call, but TWO phone calls from the coolest sister ever and I must say, I have enjoyed it!! By sister I mean Madison Homra because she is the closest thing I have to a sister. I hear from Madison occasionally via text message or on the fam group text and every so often I receive a call when she needs my help with something typically related to high school education. But she has called me twice now just to chat, and I have loved everything about it! I mean nothing makes my day more!!
When she called me last week and didn't immediately ask for my help I was worried something bad had happened in Stuttgart... that just tells you how rare our phone conversations are. I must say after taking her to school almost every day her freshman year, I was worried about leaving her all alone at SHS when I graduated, but I must say she has made my proud. For example, just a couple of weekends ago she was crowned Miss Stuttgart High School!!! I am telling y'all she is smart, kind, and so beautiful. I found just like to take a little credit for her win because I believe I am the one who has been telling her she needs to do more pageants. Just by going to her dance recitals for all these years I can promise you she shines on stage. So proud of you Mad!!
Today she called to tell me about how she tried to get the Kylie Jenner lip gloss today, which incase you did not know sells out in minutes. Madison almost had some, but when she went to check out they were already sold out. She said it had to have been less than 3 minutes... lol if only Southern and Thankful went that fast! Maybe you'll get it next time, Madison!
Madison, thanks for calling me lately. I always always will enjoy talking to you sister! You make me so proud, and I am also very thankful you are now taking care of Mills at SHS... Funny how fast we grow up right? Love you sister!!! Cant wait to see you in a few days... call me anytime!! :)
Call the people you love... no matter where they are in the world. I am thankful Madison and I have been making time for each other! It is the littlest things that can make us thankful... try it out people!
Monday down...3 days...I am thankful!
Southern and Thankful
After a long, but productive weekend I am back in Fort Worth and almost ready for a new week. And by almost I mean not ready at all, but I think that after I get a good night's sleep I will be ready.
This weekend was spent in Tulsa, OK, the rest of the TCU Beta Exec team and several other beta exec teams in the southeast conference. We attended a leadership retreat called "Keystone" put on by Beta nationals and we as a team are highly encouraged to attend. I wish I could tell you it was such a fun time, but as you can imagine these things are more about business, though at times it was fun! I was not really sure about it because I went to something similar at Beta national headquarters this past summer. I did not want it to be the same type of thing, but it was different in several ways. We really had the opportunity to work as an exec team and create different goals for our chapter. In my opinion it really helped us grow as a group in a positive direction. I really enjoyed the time bonding and growing with the rest of the exec team and all the other betas from all over the place. One great thing about these types of things is the ideas and just overall lessons you can learn from other chapters. It also really encourages me that my chapter is moving in the right direction.
Unfortunately we arrived at the hotel on Friday and did not leave until this afternoon. So sadly I didn't get to see much of Tulsa, but that just means I will have to go back at some point. We were also staying up late and getting up early, which is why I think I can hear my bed calling my name. I am really thankful for my exec team and the work each of us is willing to put into this position. I am beyond thankful to be on this exec because I constantly feel like I am growing not only as a member of this fraternity, but also as a basic human being. That is when you know you have a good thing going. Thanks for making this weekend worth it, boys.
On that note, I have one week. Really less than 5 days until Spring break. I can see it down the road and I am beyond ready to get to it!! But nothing is ever that easy. I have a pretty busy week as far as obligations, homework, and activities are concerned. I also have a test on Friday and a paper due Thursday, but after that I will be ready to go anywhere, but class. I can't wait to be home and with my family for a much needed break. It is going to be a good one... As soon as I can make it there!
Whether you have Spring Break next week or not, you can have a great week. You will have a great week. Tell yourself that and then when Friday rolls around you will have lots to be thankful for. I will pray for you... you pray for me... we can do it!
Also, huge shoutout to @keystone for ordering/having the most pizza I have ever seen in my entire life for us last night. Y'all no joke I have never seen anything like it. SO many pizza's. We could not stop laughing. Good times. Thankful times.
Southern and Thankful
I have never been to Mardi Gras, you know like in Louisiana, but I am thinking I could thrive there... Maybe.
Last night we had Beta, Delt, and Gamma Phi Mardi Gras and I will say it was a pretty good time. It was the first Beta event of the semester and this time it was a little different for some of us. Since I am on exec I and the rest of the exec have a responsibility to make sure everyone is safe while having a fun event. So you know, doing the normal duties like working bus loading. I do have to give a shout out to my roommate! He is VP of social programming and last night was his time to shine. He was in charge of the whole event and even planed the whole thing. It can be a fun job and it can also be a stressful job, but John did a great job on this first big event of the semester!
I wore as many beads as I could find, my Mardi Gras jester hat, purple converse, a super cool Kappa Mardi Gras themed shirt, and I had a cool design painted on my face. Speaking of cool, I had the best date. And I know for a fact she is the best date because this is not our first event together. Any thing with Brooke Wong is always a good time. Thanks for taking time out of your busy schedule to deck out in purple, yellow, and green. Thanks for coming to bus loading and standing in the cold all while painting my face! Thanks for dancing the night away and feeling very concerned for Machine Gun Kelly (rapper at the event). Thanks for standing on the couches and people watching with me. Most of all thanks for being my friend. I love going to things together because I know that you will forever be one of the best dance partners and dates. Oh, and thanks for attempting to teach me that cool foot dance thing... so sorry I am a slow learner. Let's do it again real soon!
Today, I am heading to Tulsa for a Beta conference. Yayyyyy (you can decide if that is sarcasm). I have probably been to Tulsa before, but I don't really remember it that much so this should be fun. Our whole exec is required to go so please pray for safe travels, and a good weekend! I am not sure how much I will be writing, but I can assure you I will let you know how it goes! O K L A H O M A BOUND.
Also, my friend Taylor's funeral is today and I am so hating the fact that I cannot be there. Please say a prayer for all those who will be in attendance today. Saying goodbye is never easy.
Happy Friday and Happy Weekend... Stay thankful!
Southern and Thankful
I feel like I have had so much to share this week that I forgot about one really cool thing that happened. In case you didn't know, I am going to be lucky enough to travel abroad this coming summer with the communications school here at TCU. I am beyond ready!!
It was a little stage though because I got accepted last November and then didn't really hear any thing about it. On Monday we finally had a meeting, with the whole group and got a lot of the important information. I meet the professors traveling with us and several other who are going on the trip. They answered a lot of my questions that were starting to stress me out.
Long story short please go ahead and start praying for my trip abroad. Pray for safety and pray it is the best experience of my life. I have t really rapped my head around the fact that I'm going to Italy for over a month very very soon. Go ahead and put that on your mind if you will!
Also, please comment below of you have anything I can pray for you about. I will gladly add you to my list. Here's to it almost being the weekend! You can do it!!! Stay thankful!
Southern and Thankful
I am not sure if I have told you this or not, but at the very last minute I made a very big decision. I am talking catastrophically big, at least for me it is.
A few weeks ago I talked about lent and what I was planning to do, which is spend more time in God's word. It has been going pretty well and I already feel so much better and closer to Him. During that same week when I talked about my lent decision, I also talked about how crazy a week it was with lots of tests and things going on. Well, in all my busyness, I realized I hadn't eaten Chick Fil A all week. I then realized that since I hadn't eaten it since lent had started that I should just take the time and give that up for lent. But trust me, this was not a split second decision.
If you know me then you know my obsession with Chick Fil (CFA). Back in my Stuttgart living days. I jumped at any opportunity to eat CFA.
We have one on campus so it is very easy access for me these days. So much easy access I usually eat it 3 times a week.
As you can imagine I am dying to have it. I mean it is becoming a problem. I didn't really realize how often I went to CFA. I can't even go on that side of campus because I know I will be tempted.
This morning I got to my 9:30 class and for the past week the very nice TCU athlete brings her CFA breakfast and sits right behind me. Literally directly behind me. Talk about cruel. That happened this morning and usually I eat my pop tart and try to pretend I don't smell it, but I forgot my pop tart in my room and the rest is down hill. So all day I have been trying to be thankful for other foods. For example, I went to the library and realized they have grilled cheese and it is really good!! I mean if I hadn't given up CFA, then I would have never tried this grilled cheese. It was no CFA, but it was something new to me and I don't mind it.
I encourage you all to keep CFA far away from me, please. I am not sure what I will do if it gets close to me (totally jk...maybe).
Try something new in life. Go out of the normal schedule. Get the grilled cheese and try to ignore the nuggets. At least try people. Oh and yeah, be thankful.
Southern and Thankful
Come back in time with me:
Freshman year. TCU. Hot. August. First day of college class ever. Statistics, yuck. I go in very anxiously and find a random seat because if you remember, at the time I knew no one. This very nice looking girl comes and sits next to me. She gets all her things out, very organized and looks ready for the first day of school. Even has on her TCU Chi O shirt. I remember thinking, "I have to make friends with this girl. My mom will love that I have a Chi O friend."
We make small talk assuring we are in the right class room and then the very tall professor comes into class and starts. Shortly into this introduction he suggests we turn to the person next to us and get his or her number that way we can begin to form study groups. Who even knew that was a thing? (lol) I turn to the same girl and she says:
"Oh hi, by the way, my name is Taylor."
and I said,
"Oh yeah sorry about that, my name is Cade. We should exchange numbers because I have a feeling this class is going to be a struggle."
We exchanged numbers and she put "Taylor Helland (Stats)" in my phone as her contact, which is still there to this day.
And just like that, God placed one of the biggest blessings in my life.
Taylor would miss class almost every other Friday. She would always text and asked what she missed and I would tell her. I always thought it was a little strange, but who was I to judge. It took a little while before I learned Taylor's story. She was missing class because she was receiving treatment every other weekend for the cancer that she had been battling for several years. I remember being so shocked that someone so normal could be fighting cancer and doing freshmen year at the same time. It really put things in perspective for me.
And ever since then my friendship with Taylor has grown. She and I were majoring in the same thing so we saw each other often. I did not know a lot about Taylor's life outside of her cancer, chi o, and the little things she would tell me about her family and friends, but y'all her passion was incredible. She wanted to work in PR and help children that were going through the same fight. The longer I knew her the more I was amazed. She had a gift. Taylor told her story to so many people because she knew that she could help. She eventually had her own slogan: "Choose Joy" and she lived that out everyday better than anyone I had ever met. On days where she received bad news... she somehow found joy. On days she received good news... she radiated joy. It amazes me that God placed her in my life so soon into my chapter here at TCU. Sadly, Taylor went to be with the Lord on Saturday. Though she is now happier than ever and pain free... praise God for that. I never told Taylor this, but her story and her drive often gave me the encouragement, confidence, and passion to be Southern and Thankful. There were days that I remember thinking, "If Taylor can find joy in every aspect of her life, I can find something to be thankful for." I will so miss Taylor, like many, but I am so encouraged by the fact that she has left has a tremendous mark on so many and in this community and world. I only wish I could have gotten to know her more and work with her like he talked about back in the day.
Last February, I was invited to Chi O crush, which is an anonymous event for guys where a chi o invites you secretly. Sometimes your date will tell you who they are, but I went to the event not knowing. After the event Taylor texted me saying that she had invited me to crush. I loved everything about that. Taylor has such a great boyfriend, but she had two invites so she invited me also. I, of course, thanked her so much and said I honestly didn't believe I would get invited. She replied and said, "Cade, don't be silly. Everyone loves you and we all wanted you there!!"
Taylor, my friend, the same thing can be said to you right now. Everyone loves you and we all wish you were here. But I think knowing how joyful you are up in heaven makes us all a little more joyful. I will never forget your gift and the impact you had on me from the very beginning. I thank you for being the first person to buy a Southern and Thankful tee, the first person to sit next to me in a college class, and the first person to teach me the true importance in choosing joy. I know many of us will be happy to carry on your legacy. Until we meet again, stay thankful my friend.
Please keep in mind Taylor was a daughter, a sister, a girlfriend, a chi o sister, a patient, a dog owner, a big, a little, a classmate, a student, a believer, a member, a speaker, a friend and so much more to so many people. Many need prayers during this hard time as I know it has hit this community with a blow to the heart.
I will be forever thankful for that first day of class where I met the most remarkable girl for the rest of my life. I am thankful for Taylor Helland and the joy she will always bring me.
To help fund Taylor's past medical expenses and funeral expenses please visit: https://www.gofundme.com/yhq5ukq4
Southern and Thankful
This weekend has been such a crazy, fun, sad, and joyful weekend. I was so so happy to have my Mom in Fort Worth for Mom's weekend. My mother is the brightest light in my life and I love when she comes to visit. Mom's weekend is always so great because it is just us one on one and I so enjoy it. That rarely happens for us and being with my Mom is such a joy. This Mom's weekend was a little different because since I am on the exec board for beta, one of my jobs is to be in charge of Mom's weekend. I did have a tremendous amount of help from the Beta Mom's Club. They are amazing women and I really appreciate all they do for our chapter. I think the weekend as a whole was a big success and that is something to be thankful for.
Friday, my mom went on my tour, as I mentioned, which was so so incredible. The fact that the last time we went on a tour together was when I toured TCU and decided to make that my next chapter of my life...that amazes me. Talk about full circle. y'all. God is good. I then got my acceptance letter to frog camp and loved having my Mom here to celebrate with. We went to the mall to get her some things, we went to Fuzzy's (her favorite spot) with one of her best friends from high school who's son is looking at TCU. We then went to a little cocktail party at a friend's house with all our Mom's and then to a great restaurant downtown with on of my best friends and his Mom and Granna, whom we went to NYC with last spring break. We love "making memories," as Granna says.
Saturday, my Mom and I had brunch with her same friend and her son, who had interviewed for Chancellor's Scholar over the weekend, which is such an awesome thing!! Jacob would be such a great addition to the TCU community... We will keep our fingers crossed. We then ran some errands and then yesterday afternoon we had a cooking class with all the other Mom's, which went fantastically. So much fun!! Last night we had dinner with a bunch of people and ended up hanging out in the hotel lobby last night afterwards.
Sunday (today), we had brunch at the Colonial Country Club and got to just spend time with a bunch of Mom's and sons.
Overall I would say it was a 10 out of 10!! My mom loves this weekend because she gets to see a tiny glimpse at what my life is like here. She meets my friends (falls in love with them) and is reassured that I am in the right place. It makes my heart so happy. Thanks for coming Mom!! I couldn't imagine Mom's weekend with anyone else. Can't wait to hang with you in a few weeks on Spring Break!!! Love you to the moon and back times ten!!
However, this weekend was also sad because of the passing of my sweet friend Taylor Helland. Please continue to keep her family and friends in your prayers. Loss is one of the hardest things in the world. Taylor was my age, but the coolest thing is how big of an impact she made in such a short amount of time. I so admire her for that. Thank you, Taylor. TCU is really living by your famous words, "Choose Joy." Prayers are so appreciated!
Here's to finding joy in Mom's weekend 2016!!
Southern and Thankful
Yesterday was a long, but super fun day. It started with an experience TCU tour, which is always fun for me, I then had a test, the student panel, and my mom is here and has gotten to spend the whole day with me, including the tour!! It was so great having her and even cooler thinking about the last tour we were on together was when I was touring TCU and made my decision to call TCU my home. Time flies my friends. I can't really get over it!!
I will for sure talk about Mom's weekend later this weekend, but today I have one thing in particular that has me feeling oh so thankful!!!
TCU had an amazing first year experience program, which is so helpful for our freshman who are making that leap of faith and starting lots of new things at a very new place!! One of those programs in particular is called Frog Camp!! I have talked about it several times because it is such a special part of my TCU story. Last month I applied/interviewed to be a Frog Camp facilitator, which are the students that help lead Frog Camp. At TCU it is very competitive and is for sure an honor to be a part of this vital first year experience program. I applied and yesterday they put letters in our mailboxes telling us whether we were picked or not! I was very nervous, but it was nice having Mom here!
Anyways, I was selected to be a frog camp facilitator for an awesome Frog Camp in August, Casa C!!! I am beyond excited!! I cannot wait to get started. AHHH it is so hard to explain to those who don't know how awesome this is to have been selected for. I cannot wait to experience frog camp from the other side. I am still smiling I'm so stoked!!!
God has a plan and I am thankful frog camp is part of that plan!!! I am so so happy to be a frog camp facilitator!! I mean if that isn't the definition of TGIF, then I don't know what is!!!
Also, one of my sweetest friends, Taylor Helland, went to be with the Lord this morning after battling cancer for many years. My heart is so heavy, but at the same time I am so honored to have known Taylor. Her impact on this campus, community, and world is incredible. I am really going to miss her constant encouragement and kindness. There will never be anyone as great as Taylor. I, of course, will elaborate and share Taylor's message with you after I have had time to really comprehend it. I am still finding it hard to believe she is dancing with angles right now. I tell you all this now to ask that you pray for the Helland family, the TCU Chi Omega Chapter (Taylor was a chi o here), and all those who know and are really going to miss Taylor, including myself. Fly high Taylor... Thanks for choosing Joy and being #southernandthankful. That meant the world to me.
Hope you all find something to be thankful for this weekend!
Southern and Thankful
Yesterday, my heart was just too thankful after another good bible study with my brothers, I forgot to share this crazy thing that happened.
As we have talked about before, I am in a Children's Lit class, which is mostly for education majors. The majority of the people in my class are education majors and since that is not my major I am not really familiar with most of the class. I mean I know people, but not like how I know people in my Strategic Communication classes. In this Children's Lit class we have name tags (so elementary school... it fits) and every week the professor places the name tags randomly in different places. Meaning every week I sit next to someone different. Yesterday, I went to class, found my name tag and sat down, ya know just minding my own business. Like every other week whoever's name tag was claiming the seat next to mine, they came and sat down. I did not know her, but I really wasn't paying attention until I noticed what she had on.
I did a double take. I glanced at her like normal, but then immediately looked back when I realized her shirt look very familiar. And by familiar I mean it looked like something I designed. And by something I mean it was something I designed!!! At first, I couldn't really see it that well because of the angle she was sitting in, but I could make out the design and I was thinking, "Some sorority has stolen my design and replaced it with their words." But I soon realized that this was not accurate and she was for sure wearing the Southern and Thankful for Game Day shirt in purple because duh, TCU.
Long story short, this girl had no idea who I was let alone the fact that I am the owner and designer of that brand she is wearing. I asked her where she got the shirt from and then thanked her for her purchase! I am just sharing with you because I thought it was SO cool. Actually one of the best feelings ever.
S/O to Amanda for making my day yesterday and being #southernandthankful!
Prayers for a busy next 24 hours, with a test, a tour, and Mom's weekend starting. So excited to see my Mom! I will try to write this weekend, but if we are having too much fun you will have to understand! I'll fill you in eventually! Happy almost Friday! How can we not be thankful?
Southern and Thankful
Wednesdays are my busiest days, but at the same time they are one of my favorites. I have 2 classes plus a night class, exec meeting, and beta bible study. I mean it is kind of one of those days where I am doing back to back to back, but I so look forward to it because we have bible study with the guys in the house. We started this last semester and I really enjoy this time with my brothers diving into God's word. Every week someone different does a lesson on his choosing. So for example, this week was my week and I talked about when God puts us in a holding period.
For example, He made David king of Israel and then sent him back to watch over sheep in a field. Fast forward to the end of the story and you see that God had a purpose in this. He made him watch over sheep in that field to give him the necessary time to grow closer to God, prayer, and prepare him for his time as king. I am sure David thought this was a crazy request, but in the end I am sure David looked back and understood exactly why God did this. I know several of us can think about times when this has happened. Maybe you didn't understand what God was doing. It is hard, but the thing that matters most is what you do during that waiting period, during that time of uncertainty. You pray, you get in the word, and you praise God in every aspect of your life. For many of us, college is a real waiting period. So many big decisions have to be made in 4 short years, and during that time it is so important to use it wisely. I had fun talking with the guys tonight about this topic!
Being a part of this has been such a blessing in my life. I am thankful for this group of guys and the support this bible study brings. Being in this bible study is another way that we can use this waiting time wisely. I know this is something I always wanted and I think it is pretty cool to have it with a group of the guys that I am living around. Boys, it is a pleasure learning, and growing with you weekly. I can honestly see God working in us and I love seeing everyone's perspectives and love for the Lord. Y'all rock!
If you are not using your time wisely, I encourage you to get with a group of people and let God lead the discussion. It is one of those things that I thank God for on the regular. It opens your heart, mind, and eyes to how God is working in this world. You will be thankful like I am!
Southern and Thankful
Blessed is an understatement when it comes to my life. Each and every day I am amazed by God's steadfast love. In return, I have claimed this space to show my thanks and whatever else comes along the way. A student at Texas Christian University who loves any creative insta post, all donuts, and dress pants that make you do a double take. I pray God has a grand purpose for me and I plan to get there with a little Southern and a lot of Thanks! Join me!