Ready Christmas Card

2013

Our Christmas/News Years Card For 2013

Greetings from Memphis, TN!!

That’s where Lauren and Scott moved in January 2013. We say this every year but it’s been an incredible journey. Another year of big changes. We moved to Memphis, bought our first home and both have new jobs.

To start, the move to Memphis happened fast. We got a call on January 3rd, by the 6th we had accepted and by January 25th we were packed up and on our way to Memphis.

Lauren accepted a job at Action News 5, WMC-TV in Memphis. It’s the same station where she interned in 2007. It’s been a goal of hers to get back to Memphis and when the opportunity presented itself they couldn’t pass it up.

In her short time at Action News 5, Lauren has covered a lot of ground. Starting with a road trip to Michigan with the Memphis Tigers for the NCAA tournament. Then, a trip to the White House to cover a Memphis Soul Concert and several days in Moore, Oklahoma covering the tornado aftermath. In a few short months she’s quickly fallen into place as a member of the team and is now focusing on community interest stories and in-depth investigations.

Scott was able to keep the same job through the move, working from home for John Deere. After 18 months at home (12 in Omaha, 6 in Memphis) Scott got a little cabin fever and decided it was time to put away the slippers. He took a new job with International Paper in May. Scott is also preparing to go back to school to get his MBA. He has applied at Christian Brothers University and will start classes in Spring of 2014.

This summer they also bought their first home. It’s walking distance from the “world famous” Beale Street…hint hint. Visitors are welcome. It’s been fun exploring Memphis and making it home.

We’ve also gotten involved in the St. Peter’s Young Adult Group, Memphis Iowa Club, Catholic Young Adult Commission, a kickball league (see Christmas card for photo) and several service groups. One of those is the Urban Bike Food Ministry (hence the helmet photo on our card) They are a group of bicyclists that go out EVERY Wednesday night (rain or shine) and deliver food to the homeless people of Memphis. It’s been an eye opening experience for us both. We’ve also met some great people in the process.

It’s also been great being close to Lauren’s family. In fact, this year we all ran in the Race for the Cure together for the first time in several years. But we’ve also made a few trips back up the Midwest for weddings and Ready family events. Iowa is ALWAYS in our hearts.

Check out our 2013 RECAP VIDEO:

2013 was an amazing year. We are grateful that God has guided us through all the adventures. And can’t can’t wait to see where he leads us in 2014.

Wishing you and your family the best this year. Maybe a trip to Memphis is near?!?

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Five Years Ago Today…

Five years ago today, I was working at KWWL in Dubuque, Iowa.  Living the one-man-band bureau life.  Working Tuesday-Saturday nights and NOT looking for love. In fact, my ONLY goal was to get to Memphis (in 5 years time) and keep working in TV news. But somehow it came to me…or God gave it to me.  Five years ago on this very night, Scott called me girlfriend.  It was news to me, really!!! We were at the Asbury Eagles Club, enjoying their cheap beer, when his grandma showed up.  She recognized me from TV and Scott introduced me to her.  He said “Grandma, this is my girlfriend.”

You should know, that the word girlfriend was kind of like a run off sentence…that slowly faded away at the end.  But I heard it, he knew that I heard it and his grandma loved it.  Grandma Ready knew something that night.  But none of us really knew what would come of it.

2008 LaurenANDScottWhat would follow were years of life changing moments that eventually lead us to now.  Years of traveling every other weekend to see each other.  Getting to know each other and finding that there was no better person on this earth for me than Scott.  I believe God put him in my life for so many reasons.  He makes me happy and everyday he inspires me to be a better person.  At my best and my worse, he encourages and stands by me.

When you get engaged and married, your dating anniversary kind of fades.  But today, I celebrate a milestone I never thought I’d get to.  In a way, we are still dating as much as we were then.  I pray that spark I felt that day is the same spark I feel years from now.  A spark that keeps us growing and becoming who God wants us to be.  Living, loving, serving and seeing God in each other.

Be Joyful: It’s Not That Complicated

This morning I was a guest on Iowa Catholic Radio’s morning show with Jon Leonetti, Jeanne Wells and Dowling Catholic Hall of Famer Mark Amadeo.  I’ve been on the show several times in the past and really enjoyed it. We talk about various topics from time to time but this morning it was all about faith in the workplace.  Something I think, it’s fair to say, many of us struggle to approach properly.  After the show this morning I decided to put my thoughts down and provide a few tips for ANYONE (not just Catholics) who are trying to find a balance of sharing your faith in the workplace and not offending or overpowering someone else’s belief.

In a world that often seems so complex, or a world that we make so complex let me keep it simple here:

It starts with being JOYFUL.

Yes, it’s that simple.  In the workplace, at home, in the community and with your friends. Be a joyful, forgiving and generous person.  You see, JOY is contagious and inspiring.  And it’s something Christ gives us too.

If your joy is apparent to others, it will be clear the source of your happiness and will likely start a faith conversation. Bottom line if you’re joyful and kind, someone is going to wonder where you get it.

I often thinks of Matthew 5:13-13 (well honestly I usually have to look it up because I can’t remember it very well – insert Catholic joke here)

“You are the salt of the earth. You are the light of the world. A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden. Just so, your light must shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your heavenly Father.” Matthew 5:13-14, 16.

I don’t know about you but that message is clear as the light of day (no pun intended).  But let’s be honest, as clear as that is, it’s not always easy!  That’s where prayer and intentions come into play.

So beyond being JOYFUL – what else can we do? Below are a few tips:

1. Don’t judge: It’s not your job.  I know that bible verse says you are “city set on a mountain top” but that doesn’t mean you’re better than others. Instead of preaching and judging, be loving and sharing.  People will relate better to the “hope you have” and/or the “joy within you”. That may even spark curiosity and start a conversation.

2. Don’t act like you’re perfect: Because we all know you’re not. Just because you go to church ever Sunday, attend bible study or faith sharing and donate your time and talent to your church, doesn’t mean you’re perfect.  If you are, I’d love to meet you!!! 🙂 Instead be honest, show you’re human.  Honesty is always better than pretending to be someone you’re not. The more relatable you are the better.

3. Remember ACTIONS speak volumes: They are often better than words.  St. Francis of Assisi said “Proclaim the gospel, when necessary use words.”  So stop talking and start acting.  You don’t have to talk about God to be and see Christ in others.  Reach out to someone everyday with kindness and JOY.  That opens the door for more and often challenges everyone to dive deeper.

4. Don’t forget to pray: for strength, for growth and for OTHERS not just yourself. Without prayer we are lost.  It’s important.  And I think we’ll find that prayer can really make a difference in how you approach your faith in the workplace.

So how can this be applied to your life today?

Take a few moments to talk to someone at work.  Ask them how they are, how their weekend went and what they’re up to this week.  Take some time to show that you care about them beyond the cubical in your office.  Get to know them, BE JOYFUL now.  I think you’ll see the impact.  I see it everyday.  In the good and the bad. The people who have the most influence in my day and inspire me to see god, are full of JOY.

Try it and let me know how it goes.

God bless.