Come and open up your folding chair next to me...

I got a tumblr.  Go to ellisbelle.tumblr.com and bookmark that thang, because so far it looks like it might take over this blog.  This blog is old school, and tumblr does fancy things.  Not that I'm shutting down the good old Blogger, but just be warned that it might start to wane.  Not that much goes on here anyway, but yeah.  You get the idea.

I love you, little blog readers.

I'm ready for summertime.


Welcome to existence...

I survived the funeral.  I say that as if I had another option, other than surviving.  What else was I going to do?  Die?  Not go?  Whine and drag my feet?  That’s dumb.  Of course I survived the funeral.  It was sad, and basically horrible, but it was also good and I hugged a lot of old friends and there was just a lot of love there.  I am thankful that the family of the little boy who passed away is leaning on the only real hope there is, Christ and the hope he offers us, that we’re living for a purpose and He holds us together.
After the funeral I went thrifting and bought some jeans.  Thrifting is seriously one of the best things ever.  I wish I had taken a picture of the incredible purple vintage dress I found, but I didn’t even think of it, nor did I buy the dress, although I think I maybe should have because it was awesome.  Purple with flowers and lots of bunchy puff-sleeved ’80s awesomeness.  I went to Gong Fu tea after I had my little bout of retail therapy, drank some kind of life-changing tea that was insanely, miraculously delicious called Cloud Nine, and then walked around the East Village for a while to kill time because I put too much change in the parking meter, and when laundry is $1.25 to wash and another $1.25 to dry, quarters are absolutely not to be wasted.  Then I came home and watched Dr. Phil while I folded my laundry.  This is how I have managed to survive today, thus far.  I’m going to continue to survive by going to the store to get a screwdriver so that I can put my blinky butt safety light on my bicycle, and to get something yummy to take to a grill out tonight with a group of people known as the Supermodels, and then I’ll go to said grill out and I will eat massive quantities of meat and I will laugh a lot and possibly cry.  I rarely cry, so if that happens it will be a big deal.
If you read this whole thing, I love you.


Am I gonna be alright? because it doesn't feel that way, no, not today...

This past week has been weird.

I wish I could explain to people how terrifying it is to know that you should have an emotional reaction to something, and to then have not have one.  Or to have one that you are completely unable to understand or identify or express.

On Monday I have to go to a funeral for a 7-year-old little boy.  The world is a really effed up place when you have to go to a funeral for a child.


The very thing that I hate more than everything is the way I'm powerless to dictate my own moods...

Art is right, my blog needs an update.

Laura stayed for a grand total of almost THREE WEEKS!  It was a fun time, but her hubby needed her and so now I'm all alone again, with my kitty and my fishy.  It's not so bad.

I have 7 holes in my ears right now.  Yeah.  Getting crazy.

My mind has been especially insane lately.  My brain is literally just goinggoinggoinggoing all the time, and I get tired of that.  It goes psycho sometimes more than usual.

I wish I was better at writing songs about God and my faith.  I feel like my songs about God start to sound so stupid, like every other worship song, and it makes me kind of mad so then I throw them away.  I don't like worship music a lot of the time because it all sounds the same.  The lyrics are the same, the music is the same, the sentiment is the same.  I appreciate the music at DTC because they play a lot of really cool, unique songs for worship that speak a lot of truth and go a little deeper.  But as far as writing about God, it's somehow a lot more difficult for me than writing about other stuff.  So anyway.  Random topic there but I was thinking about it.

Galatians is really good.  I finished it this week.  You should go read it and learn lots.

It's really late and I'm not very good at thinking of new information about me.  Sorry about that.

My taxes are filed.  Yay!

Frosted animal crackers are straight from heaven.

Today I went out with Elle.  We got coffee.  Then, we went to her grandparents house and hung out with Dave.  Then we all three went to the mall, and shopshopshopped, and then Elle and I got Uncle Wendell's Barbecue which is so delicious, and then I went to church.  It was a good day.  And tomorrow will be good too, because I am going to fill it up with lovely people.

I have to wake up in 5 hours to get coffee with Chrissy.  I don't like having to wake up so soon.  I looooove coffee with Chrissy though, so it's totally worth it.

In two weeks I get a new phone, and I am soooo excited.

The end.



I won't say everything is right, it's not right, I don't see everything as right...

I have a roommate.  My deardeardear friend Laura is staying with me for a while while her really rad husband Andrew finishes being a computer nerd in Florida, and then he's going to move out to Des Moines as well and we'll all be best buddies.  But for real, I love them to pieces so I'm so excited to have Laura here.  We are having a lot of fun being roommates.  Except she has been dying of some flu virus grossness, but I think she's getting better.  A doctor gave her some drugs so that seems to indicate that the situation is going to improve.  Anyway, we have gone on a few adventures and it has been pretty great, and I'm pretty sure we'll do all the adventures over when Andrew moves out here since I'm sure he'll think they're the lamest thing ever.  I love it.

My kitty loves Laura more than me.  Because Laura has been sick and at home all week while I've been bringing home the bacon.  So unfair. *sniff*

The new Eisley album is so far pretty great.

Did you know that the Panera downtown closes at 8?  How weird is that?  What a horrible time to close.

Tonight Laura and I watched the movie Salt with Angelina Jolie.  It was alright.  We sat through it and even made fun of it some, and at the end I decided it had sufficiently entertained me for two hours, and that's really all I care about anymore in regards to movies.  Movies just suck anymore.  I haven't seen a good movie in a long time, with the exception of Inception, because Christopher Nolan is a genius.

My awesome big brotherfriend Patrick is coming over tomorrow.  I told him I'd cook him food.  That may have been a bad thing to say.  We will have either tilapia or chicken, I decided, because those are the only things I really cook.  If it can't be cooked on a George Foreman, microwave, or a saucepan I usually don't have anything to do with it.  Not that I can't cook.  I just don't.  So maybe it's good that I said I'd cook him lunch because then I actually have to cook something and it'll be good practice.  Or something like that.

I've decided this week that I really like Regina Spektor's music.  She's weird and quirky and bizarre.  I'm into those kinds of things.  I bought her album Far, and Eet and Machine are my favorite songs so far.

Time to sleep.  I hope you friends enjoyed my ramblings.



You would be the last thing I saw coming...

I got a cat.  Off of Craigslist.  Her name is Maleficent.  She's cute and she likes to explore her new 300 square foot stomping grounds.  My apartment is a far cry from the fancy house she lived in in Ankeny, but she seems to like it here.  I don't know.  She likes me, I think.  And she hasn't peed on anything, so that's good.

I'm performing for an event at Grand View on March 5th.  It's called Rock4Hope, and it's going to be cool, and you should go.  I don't know what time.  Sorry.  You'll just have to make it up.

I got baptized tonight.  The Lord is good.

I overthink a lot of life.

I need to sleep.



What you don't understand is I'd catch a grenade for you...

I've literally had "Grenade" by Bruno Mars stuck in my head since Monday.  For real.  But this isn't just random.  I don't usually get cheesy pop R&B songs stuck in my head for days at a time.  It takes something pretty amazing for this to happen to me.  So, now that you're wondering, let me fill you in on how all this song stickage came about.

A few weeks ago at bible study Matt made the announcement that Monday, February 14th would be a bible study hang out night, except that it was special.  In honor of Valentine's Day, the boys were going to make dinner for the ladies.  Us girls were told we needed to get all "gussied up" for a special night the guys were planning.  In my high school days (soooo long ago.  right.) the girls in my youth group typically made up some cookies and got some candy and made bags of treats for the boys, as a little Valentine's surprise, so I was kind of excited to have the dudes be the thoughtful ones for a change. (no offense, high school dude friends...you did lots of special things for us ladies too)

So a couple of weeks went  by, and in that time the girls of course got together and decided what we were all going to wear, how we would do our hair, all those very important girly things.  Then, Valentine's Day came, and just as the guys had told us to, the ladies got all cute and dressed up.  When we all drove up and met up with each other to go inside (I was there first, because I'm a total lamewad, so I sat in the car and waited for the other girls...no way was I going in by myself) we were greeted at the door by Jesse, the doorman, and then by a line of our men standing by in suits and ties, who then proceeded to escort us to our places at the table, which was beautifully decorated.  Ryne and Joel poured all us girls some sparkly juice, and the rest of the guys served us a delicious meal that Dave had cooked, followed by cheesecake that Paul made.  There was a slideshow of photos that someone had stolen from our facebooks (I accuse Paul Joy) which was super hilarious, but really fun to watch, and Michael Buble was on in the background.

So, we enjoyed our lovely meal, and after our dessert plates had been cleared and we had all commended the boys on their wonderful serving skills, Tyler walked to the middle of the room and announced that the guys had written a letter to the Supermodel ladies.  He read it to us, and it was really, really lovely and sweet.  They basically sat down and made a list of why they love us.  Totally awesome.  It was really sweet and I might have almost cried a little.  Maybe.  But only a tiny bit of almost.

So, before you start to think "Wow, what a great little dinner!  It couldn't have possibly been awesomer!"  Let me just tell you that what happened next may have been the greatest thing that could have possibly happened ever in the universe.  Matt picked up his guitar, which had been propped up in the corner and had a couple of us wondering what on earth they were going to do.  He walked out in front of our table and announced that he was going to play us a song.  He tried to lie and say he'd written it, but he couldn't take himself seriously at all, so he just started laughing.  Then he got serious again and said he just really wanted us girls to be blessed so he was going to play for us.  He started playing a little riff that sounded sort of familiar, and the anticipation was making us all tense, and then all at once with the music the men all spun out of their chairs and started snapping.  It was the most hilarious thing ever.  So, they're standing in a semicircle and are snapping while Matt plays this riff.  The girls are laughing.  They guys are stifling laughter.  And then they all start to sing...

"Easy come, easy go, that's just how you live
Oh, take, take, take it all but you never give..."

And the girls all died.  We sing this song to each other ALL THE TIME, just because it's so hilarious.  And they sang the whole thing, with actions, and totally pwned it.  They even changed the lyrics to the last chorus to be about us.

"You know, I'd go ice skating with ya
Go to an Energy game with ya
Play four-on-a-couch with ya
You know we'd do anything for ya..."

It was so great.  We were laughing so hard.  And yet even though it was hilarious, it was really sweet too.  The other day I was talking to Cara, and I said that as cheesy and dumb as it sounds, Matt, Tyler, Paul, Joel, Jesse, Jordan, and Ryne were up there singing that last line of "we'd do anything for ya..." and I believed them.  They would do anything for us.  We're their sisters, and they love us, and when it comes down to it, they would do anything.

It was the best Valentine's Day I've ever had, ever in my entire life.  So rad.


The Dudes

 The Ladies

 At our lovely table.  You can't see it very well, but there were lights underneath the tablecloth, and those little clear glass fishbowl bead things.  Tyler, on the fishbowl bead things: "These are actually kidney stones passed by a unicorn.  They were very expensive."


The song, Grenade by Bruno Mars, in case you've never heard it:

Much love.  The end.


Lend me your eyes, I can change what you see...

I thought today I'd just say some random stuff about myself.  So here you have 25 facts about Mara.

1. I love Jesus and I wanna be just like him when I grow up.
2. There is a form of OCD called Onychophagia.  It's where you incessantly bite and pick at your nails and cuticles. I think I have it.
3. I love crafts.  I knit and crochet and I do origami and I scrapbook sometimes and I doodle a lot and other stuff.
4a. I love to write.  I write a lot of different stuff.  Songs, stories, letters, lists, whatever.  I don't know if any of it is any good, but I like to write it at least.  Except don't try to read my notebooks without asking or I might kill you.
4b. When I buy a new notebook it is a really big deal, and there are a lot of rules about when and what kind of notebook I'll buy.  No buying a new notebook until there are less than like, 7 pages left in the old one.  Spiral bound, about standard 8x10.5 size, must have something wonderful on it.  Extra awesome if it's college ruled, has perforated pages, and has a folder attached.  The last notebook I had was Wonder Woman.  Currently I have one with an owl on the front that is made of banana paper.
5. If I love you I will probably write to you or make you a present or just tell you over and over or hang out with you a lot.
6a. I love music.
6b. I have 4 guitars, a djembe, a bright red electric piano, 2 microphones, 2 amplifiers, some stands and cords and things, and a hot pink egg shaker.  Sometimes my apartment starts to look like a recording studio.
7. I hate being the center of attention.
8. I hate almost all games.  They make me feel unintelligent.
9. Most of the time if I am bad at something I just hate it.  Dancing is an exception.
10. I love candy, and almost all foods that are bad for me.
11. I once had a rat named Maximilian.  I starved him on accident.
12. I have been coloring my hair since I was like, 12.  Yes, I do know what my natural hair color is.  Dark brown.  Right now it's black.  Before this it was black and teal.
13. I drink a lot of Diet Mountain Dew.
14. I'm an insomniac basically.  I'm sleepy all day and then about 10 o'clock I get wide awake.  It doesn't make sense.
15. When I grow up I want to be a wife and a mother and a rock star.
16. Romans 8 shatters me every time I read it.
17. I love Chinese food.
18. Tiger lilies are for sure the way to this girl's heart.
19. I like super heroes a lot more than most 20-year-old women do, or probably even should.
20. I'm a nanny.  I watch 4 kids.  I call them the Ferocious Four.  Those kids are the greatest thing in the entire world.
21. I have lots of dreams when I sleep.
22. I have a little blueishgreenish betta fishy.  His name is Shinigami.  I talk to him sometimes.
23. I kind of want to audition for American Idol someday.  It would be an adventure.
24. Sometimes I delegate people to be related to me.  I have acquired a lot of family members this way.
25. Sometimes I really just want to become a hobo.

The last few were sort of random.  I was running out of ideas.

The end!



Hey fellas, why don't we go where the movies are silent and life is as big as a stage...

Dear _________,

I don't like emotions very much. I don't know how to identify them or express them, I sometimes mistake them for feeling physically sick, and I especially dislike how illogical and unreliable they are. If I could do away with them altogether sometimes I think that would be a good idea.

Mara Tenille


And my head told my heart, let love grow, and my heart told my head, this time no...

I'm tired and sorta cranky.  So here goes.

Today I got poop all over my favorite sweatshirt.  Beige poop.  Beige poop that also got on the beige carpet.  Gabriel had a massive diaper explosion and I didn't realize it until it was too late, so he got a bath and got to go home while I treated the carpet and disinfected roughly 30 G.I. Joe guys.  Thank the Lord I was wearing that sweatshirt though, because I didn't have a change of clothes with me.  So that was pretty horrible, but I tried to stay positive and have a good attitude, but let's face it, poop is just really gross.  Almost as gross as puke.  I think puke wins for grossest thing.

Right now I'm burning some incense.  It smells soooooooooo gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooood.  I don't know why I didn't start burning incense sooner.  This pwns Glade Plug-ins in the face.

That's it.