Friday, January 29, 2010

HS BFF's reunited

I got to spend some time with one of my best friends from high school, "Baratta." She is married and living on the west coast now, so her last name really isn't Baratta anymore but she'll always be that in my mind. (The kids weren't quite cooperating in the photo, but oh well.)

In many ways, Baratta is the main person who gave me the opportunity to hear about Jesus. She invited me to church, to youth group, and was a great sounding board for any questions I had about Christianity. I learned a lot through her life just by observing what kind of values and beliefs she had. Her faith was evident in her daily life. I am thankful, to this day, that her parents chose for her to go to Byrd (my public high school) after she attended a local Christian school. Turns out that decision impacted my walk with God (and probably others').

I was thankful that God provided her to break my stereotypes of Christians: You know... the dorkyness, the social awkwardness, the booknerd with no cultural insights. (Come on! You know you've had those same stereotypes.. unless of course you were that dorky Christian. haha) Baratta was nonesuch as a Christian. She redefined what it meant to be a Christian to me. She was also a classmate with a profound understanding of literature and an admirable taste for music. We once performed a Beatles song with Beatles wigs and suits on for our high school talent show. (Let's just say most girls were not interested in musical talent but just drawing attention to their provocative dancing on stage. We didn't exactly care that the Beatles act would not draw the guys!) She had this way about her that she could care less what others thought- not in a provocative or confrontational way- but in an assuring/ "I know what I value" kinda way. This is unheard of in the teen years. She saw the value in the sacred but could appreciate the secular and there wasn't such a dichotomy that a curious person as myself would feel embarassed if they asked a question. She never made me feel ashamed of what I didn't know. She was also my running-mate in cross country. She's a lover of the outdoors. Of the seasons. Of the coffee shop downtown. Of a good piece of classic literature or an independent film. Did I mention that she and my other bff from high school (Emily) made a movie for me (and our hs bff Katie) with clips of video they had taken throughout the year with music and everything? I digress...

My favorite detail about Baratta was in her high school graduation speech b/c yes, she was also a fellow valedictorian (I know, I know... at our school there were many of us b/c we all made 4.0 or above...that's another story). She actually quoted Scripture (in public school!) at risk of offending many and perhaps being kicked offstage, being suspended, etc. But she really showed boldness, maturity, and wisdom that I hadn't seen in peers my age. Basically we all made our speeches, some pointing to their own achievements, some turning it outward towards others (like the "you can do it if you try hard enough" speech), some with their braniac examples to further puff their egos, and mine was mostly thanking family/friends (you know, the emotional shout-outs to all your posse). But Baratta's went a step further. She questioned what the GPA's, college acceptance letters, and SAT scores really meant. She reminded us that there is an eternity out there and that if our treasure is in any of that and not in heaven (specifically in Jesus!) , we will be heavily disappointed. For it is those things that moth and rust destroy. But not God. He is eternal. She pretty much summed up my Christian testimony of how I became a believer: wanting to achieve perfection and striving as if I could achieve that and as if it was a noble and reasonable goal- and then realizing what is this all for? It is for my own sense of accomplishment and pride? For impressing others? Or perhaps setting some historical record? Or earning God's approval? Listening to her speech really helped me put things in perspective and truly affirmed the cry of my heart.

Anyways, years later (after I missed her wedding b/c I was overseas in Venezuela) and she missed mine as she was out west, we still held fond memories of each other and great thanks for how God had kept us connected despite the distance.

Baratta is now married to a great guy and they just had their first son, Aiden who is just precious!
Thanks, Baratta, for being so special to me and not being afraid to march to the beat of your own drum. I will have to tell your son one day of his great spiritual heritage!

Monday, January 18, 2010


I was looking through pictures as more and more family & friends said they could see how much Chase looked like me. I decided to go through our pix to see if I could find any truth to it. I don't think he looks much like me (Krisha) now, however my childhood pictures actually show quite a resemblance! I think it's the curly hair and pouty lips. Some people tell me that it's the eye shape or spacing, but Chase's eye color is probably closer to his daddy's. I think Chase has the cute Whited nose, but I see hints of Indian in his ears.

Chase with his pouty expression

Me with my pouty lips

Chase laughing and squinting

Me laughing at my daddy with the same squint and toothy smile! Notice how our curls flip out at our ears. (This is my favorite childhood photo of me and dad. Dad sure did know how to make me laugh!!)

I'm convinced that if Chase's hair was darker and I actually let it grow to the length mine was as a toddler, we'd look even more similar. Somehow Chase wound up with light brown hair despite Brian's and my dark hair. Who knows what our next baby will look like!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Mama, Dada

Here's a little glimpse of what our little Chase-buddy is saying these days. It melts my heart when he says it and comes over to point to me or Brian, or when I hear him in his crib in the morning saying it.

The other day my sister cracked up b/c Chase was saying ", ma-da". I'm not sure if "ma-da" is his created word or if he uses it for Aunty Nu-Nu but regardless, it made us laugh!

Friday, January 15, 2010

so proud of hubby

Just a shout out to hubby to let him know how proud I am of him. In the past 5 days he's passed oral exams for ordination, preached at a local shelter, helped me host a refugee family, and done a funeral. And he's taking Chase so I can have some girl-time with a friend. He's been working so hard and deserves a shout out!!!

Oh and did I mention that he's training for a marathon and he's been running outside in the cold these past 2 weeks of Antarctic weather we've experienced in Roanoke!!

And he's Chase's favorite as you can tell by the pix!!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Christmas pix

Here are some pix from over the holidays:
Chase comforting Zoe when she was sick. So cute right?

Chase's cousin Colin (Brian's sister's son)

Chase & Colin playing together

Brian and his nephew in their pj's

Can't forget Bailey the Boxer sitting on Jen's lap.

We enjoyed hanging out with the Whiteds & Robinsons and even got to see some extended family. Jen & Tyler and Brian & I even went on a double date and left the kiddos with grandma & grandpa! That was a treat. We ended up going bowling which was hilarious as I'm already off balance without carrying the bowling ball. I think I'm better at Wii bowling :)

My Sweet Nephew

I'm blessed that I get to see my nephew at least 3 days a week and watch him grow. He's a sweet baby and such a cute little guy too. So meet Asher Cade Musselwhite. And he's 4 months old today!

Look at those long eye lashes!!



Asher is a joy to be around and just loves being social. He bats his eyelashes at you and smiles a ton. I think he looks like his daddy (my bro-in-law) even though Asher is a 1/4 Indian. Maybe he'll look more like Renu when he gets older.

Chase has done really well with his cousin around. He gives him lots of hugs and "pat-pats" and knows that he has to be gentle around the baby. Hopefully this will be good prep for Chase's sibling-to-be. Asher is also entertained by Chase running back and forth so that's a plus!