Monday, March 31, 2008

Radnor Lake: A Cure For What Ails You

Radnor Lake, the sweet little nature area that feels like it is miles from anywhere, but is actually just off Franklin Road (or Granny White Pike), is one of my favorite happy places in Nashville. I think that stress literally must fall off of me as I walk along the road there, and I always leave feeling thankful to God for His beautiful creation.

Today, since I was once again unmotivated to get in some exercise, I decided to grab my camera and head over to Radnor for a late afternoon walk. Not letting the full parking lot on the Franklin Road side deter me (although it was tempting!), I drove around to the other parking lot and had a nice walk before the sun went down. I wish I could show some beautiful shots of budding trees as a reward for my effort, but I was a little early in the season for anything like that. I did take this shot of the lake and will look forward to returning in the weeks to come to see how God adorns the woods around the lake with blooms.

"Why are you downcast, O my soul?
Why so disturbed within me?
Put your hope in God,
for I will yet praise him,
my Savior and my God."

Psalm 42:11, NIV

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

On my walk

I was not very motivated to do any exercise today, but I hated to waste a nice day and the free time to do it, so I grabbed my iPod, my phone and my camera and headed out to at least get a mile walk (I ended up walking 2 miles and actually had fun!). On my walk these are a few things I saw:

I also saw a teacher from the elementary school and we stopped to chat for a minute. I went a few laps around the school track to get in another mile and am so glad I made the effort to get outside and walk!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Licensed to what???

I did it!!!!! I am so thankful to be able to report that I passed the state licensing exam for Life & Health insurance this morning! The test was not as bad as I had dreaded or as hard as the practice test I took yesterday (and got me all in a wad). I am so relieved to have this week behind me, and also feel a huge sense of accomplishment from achieving this goal. I am thankful to God and give Him the glory!

Some people have asked me what this licenses me to do? Well, basically, if I wanted to, I could sell life and health insurance products. Since I'm not cut out for sales, I will continue to do my job as Director of Administration at The Pruett Financial Group, which is affiliated with Northwestern Mutual Financial Network. I will be contracted as an Associate Financial Representative with Northwestern. For now, the only thing that will change will be my business cards, but who knows what other opportunities will come from taking this step of professional development.

One thing this week I got out of this week is understanding about what other people at my company have had to go through, education-wise. Also, I realized how much I have learned over the past three years (in June) of working in the insurance industry, which was new to me when I started.

Thanks to all of you who encouraged me and prayed for me this week. It helped to know I wasn't going through this on my own.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Some encouragement

In my quiet time this morning, I read a verse that I don't remember seeing before, and it was such an encouragement for me as I contemplated a day of studying. I hope it brings some encouragement to you today:

Psalm 68:19 (NIV)

Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior,
who daily bears our burdens.

Some other verses I read today for encouragement are:

Psalm 121:1-2 (NIV)

I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
the Maker of heaven and earth.

Psalm 36:6-9 (NIV)

Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
O Lord, you preserve both man and beast.
How priceless is your unfailing love!
Both high and low among men
find refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.

God is good!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

My brain is fried!

Remember the old public service announcement on TV where they showed an egg frying in a pan? "This is your brain. This is your brain on drugs." Well, I'm not on drugs, but my brain is definitely fried tonight after four days of class and taking practice quizzes, etc.. It's gone well this week, but I'm ready for it to be over! One more day of studying and then the test on Saturday morning! I can do this!

A little "shout out" to my friends, Robin and Steve, for helping me de-stress tonight. A walk at Radnor Lake ALWAYS does my body and soul good, and it was so nice to have a meal together. Friends are truly a gift from God!

More later!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Back to School

While most everyone else is off on Spring Break, I decided to take a class this week. I am taking the prep class for the Life & Health Insurance Producer exam, with the end goal of receiving my license at the end of the week--not exactly a credential I saw myself getting when I received my B.A. degree from Belmont 19 years ago, but we'll save the "Life's not what I thought it would be" post for another day. :-)

So, while it seems like half the population of Tennessee is either at Disney World or lying on the white sands of a beach in Destin, I am spending Monday through Thursday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. (well, OK, the nice teacher let us out at 4:25 today), at Kaplan Financial, over by the airport (we get to hear planes fly over very closely all day--I'm trying not to let my mind wander to thinking of where those planes might be headed). I can say that today was not as bad as I had dreaded it would be. The teacher is not totally dry and boring and I made a friend (a nice, Christian mom of twins who laughed at my jokes and was a lunch companion). And, I seem to be retaining the info so far, based on the practice quizzes. Oh, and another fun thing was that I got to see Barbara T., who works in the same building and came to find me during a break this afternoon. I really can't complain too much.

Please keep me in your prayers this week, especially on Saturday morning at 8:00 when I go to take the exam. I look forward to reporting that I passed!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

An experiment with gum

Here's some Nanette Trivia: I am a huge fan of Orbit gum, especially Citrusmint and Sweet Mint flavors. The other day, I saw that another brand of gum was on sale and I thought I'd try it. Verdict: Orbit is still #1 in my book. This may seem insignificant to most people, but I chew a LOT of gum (in an attempt to keep other more caloric treats out of my mouth), and it was an important discovery for me. :-)

Monday, March 10, 2008

Spring Forward

(This post is dedicated to my sweet sister, who has had a bunch of fun having something to tease me about the past day or two.)

Here's the scene: Sunday morning, about 6:45. I wake up and slowly decide to come to full consciousness. Finally around 7:00, I get up and go take my daily dose of thyroid medicine and get back in bed to have a little quiet time with God before getting ready for church. I think I read in Psalms for about five minutes when I had a thought: I think that the time changed last night. Is it Spring Forward? YES! Shoot, that means it's after 8:00! I check my cell phone to see what the "correct" time is. My phone says 7:05. Now I'm confused, so I call the authority on most things, my mom. "Hello, Mom? What time is it?" (and as much as my sister would like to embellish this part of the story, I didn't have a sleepy tone in my voice) "Hi Nanette. It's 8:06."

Well, you can get the gist of the rest of the morning from there. Since Daniel is not as quick a waker-upper as his mom, I decided to not make him rush and we made it to the second worship service, missing Sunday School.

It's just not like me to forget about Daylight Savings Time (especially when I had known it was happening early this year). At least I gave my family something to laugh about! :-)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Wanted: Chauffer

I've decided that some of my most stressful minutes of the day are when I am driving on the interstates around Nashville. I know that Nashville has always had a reputation for bad driving, but I think the drivers are more selfish and rude than having bad driving skills. Here's a case in point: each weekday morning, I get onto I-65 North at Harding Place. This exit is probably a mile or so before the I-440 junction, but people coming up from the south seem to think that getting over to the far right lane at Harding Place is their right and perogative. Never mind that there are other people just trying to get ON the interstate there. It's maddening! I once read someone's analogy of the way people act on the roads. The person commented that drivers think they can cut in front of everyone in line because they're in a car, but they wouldn't think of cutting in front of five people in the line at the grocery store! Can you imagine?

Then there's the wonderful spot where I have to cross over two lanes of traffic coming from the east in order to get off at my exit to go to my office (Demonbruen Ave.). Yes, I could go on down to Broadway or even Church Street and work my way back (and have been forced to do that some mornings), but that's not my most direct route. I will say that the drivers are more willing to let cars in at that point than the ones down by Harding Place.

Well, I could keep on griping about the afternoon commute, but I'll spare you those details. I guess driving in Nashville is just part of my sanctification process. I'm definitely not "there" yet, just ask Daniel!

So, if anyone knows of a good chauffer who would drive me back and forth to work and would do it out of the goodness of his/her heart, let me know!