Sunday, December 30, 2007

Okay.. so I was planning on uploading some pics while I was in GH but apparently I grabbed the wrong cord when I left and I can't get it hooked up to my laptop. oh well..

So things are going really well so far. Thursday night was the bachelorette party plus good times with Kyle and Jenni afterwards. Friday was a long but good day. It started snowing pretty heavily so I didn't make it to Andy's house for his birthday. My car kept sliding all around. New tires or not.. sweet pea doesn't like the winter. I ended up hanging with abbey, grabbing coffee with bryant than relaxing and recuperating from the holidays with some greys anatomy. Lovely. Saturday was the wedding.. I got coffee with Lacey and Derek beforehand then Steve picked me up and the ceremony was pretty short, but still amazingly perfect. Cheers to Father Bill and his high fives. There was a pretty big gap in time between the ceremony and the reception so bryant steve and I went to Coffee grounds for some Uno etc. We chuckled when the wedding party came in too.. they had gotten kicked out of the church in the middle of pictures and also had some time to kill. The reception was fun. Saw some people that I haven't seen in a long time. Amey McWilliams, Mark Holzinger, Aaron Helmus, Jessica Lukasik, etc.. list goes on and on. The food was good, and the toasts were funny... We were all pretty tired and the dancing wasn't that popular so Steve and I left around 8 or 9. Abbey came over and we watched some more greys anatomy.

I went to first pres for church this morning and saw some more faces that I have missed. It was good to see Matt Bussel, and Karin was super excited that I was there. Sat with Aris, Lacey and Derek.. watched Abbey speak about college stuff.. great girl.. too bad she made a comment she will never live down.. Justin, Dave and Jay are relentless sometimes.. Saw Russ and Tracey too. Tyler was there.. good kid. Need to grab coffee with him this week.

Went out to Applebees for lunch with Justin, Abbey, Dave, Heidi, Jay and Katie.. then two more people whose names I forgot already. May hook up with them later.. who knows.

I was supposed to hang with my brother today.. but something came up and he cancelled. I also found out that lydia has been in town and I didn't know it! ugh! I am an idiot!

I am super excited for Josh to get here on Thursday. I have been gradually telling people about him, and they have all been pretty intrigued by the whole situation. Some more nervous than others.. hahah.. should be a fun weekend.

Ok.. thats all I have for now.
I need to go get some reading/napping/grey's done. It is so nice not to HAVE to be anywhere today. I am enjoying the peace while I can!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Xmas!

Merry xmas everyone! I am at the Chill household.. as in Mike, Kris and Bryan's house. We had a good christmas eve yesterday. Played a few rousing rounds of Apples to Apples. I'll post some pictures a little bit later.. although I am realizing that I tend to make many false promises regarding the picture offers. Hopefully this time I will follow through.

Well tomorrow dad is going to attempt to drag me to a football game.. with some of his friends. I need to get some things done though.. so maybe I will be able to pull off a "pass".

Thursday is Becky's bachelorette party.. which I still need to buy her a present for.. but it will be fun to go out with the girls a little bit. I still don't technically have a place to crash.. because I am thinking/hoping that kathryn's phone is no longer working. If it is working.. grr a little bit. I need to find out if I can stay with her.. or if I need to search for other abodes.

The other exciting news is yet to be determined.. so I will wait to post.. but it would be verry exciting..

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Ann Arbor

Get ready. There will soon be a video posted depicting the infamous Grandma Fly's Cookies bakind experience. *wink*

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Just relaxing today... I spent the morning immersed in Gilmore Girls. Takes me back to the good ol days of the Majestic... Brooke I am sad to miss the birthday party, and gingerbread houses :( but know that I love you ladies and miss you tons. Have a GREAT one! and set a party hat on the table in my place.. hahaha.. not to be confused with jackson's place at the table.. what a dog!


I am off to guitar a wee bit.
happy.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Hmmm. Lazy Again.

Well classes are over. Well technically I should be writing a paragraph reflection for my SJ class. :) and THEN everything will be over. This week has been a crazy week of papers, presentations, hours on the computer for one reason or another. At one point I had red rings around my irises from being at the computer with my contacts in too long.. weird..

Well.. Friday was a great night. Went to the Christmas Party for Austine school with Josh. It was a lot of fun! I met a lot of the people Josh has been talking about, and most of them said "Nice to meet you .. finally". Apparently I had a reputation already ;) It was great to just sit and chat.. which means a lot of writing, signing, messing up and clarifying.. but I love every minute of it. We sat with a sweet couple, and although we were sort of engrossed in our own conversations for most of the evening, they seem like fun people. I saw a few people there I had met at church the sunday before last. I am excited to go back to church after break. I liked it a lot. We left the party a little bit early to go try and steal Cici away to an SIT end of semester bash at Garret's. She ended up being at work til ten (it was around 9:30) so we went to Garrets after I forced Josh into slave labor and he dug out my car for Cici to steal later :) We had to guilt her into coming.. the girl needed a break! The party was fun and I think Josh had a good time too. I struggle with playing hostess. I mean as far as trying to keep Josh involved in conversation. It is hard to know how to do that.. just as it is hard for him to do that for me when we are in a large grouop of deaf people signing. We can't interpret everything going on in the conversations.. I felt bad that he was left out, but I was greatful to the other ASL students and those excited to get to know him for involving us a little. I am pleasantly surprised by how SIT students have been in bringing him into the family little by little. I don't know how I feel about considering SIT a family.. ahahah.. oh well :p

Saturday I went to Panera for about 8 hours and worked on my presentation for SJ: Multicultural Education and Textbook Reform. Good times.. It was good to escape and eat good food, people watch and feel productive. Sunday I was snowed into SIT, which was good for my presentation but I was sad to miss church :(

Monday was the presentation day. It went pretty well although I felt a little discombobulated. I had a few huge issues that I wanted to bring into the room before discussing it all, but by the time I got through explaining it.. my time was up. OH well.. thats why I am taking the education for social justice class next semeseter. we'll talk about it more there.

Yesterday was my first classless day. I was completely unproductive (well.. i did laundry.. does that count?) but it was wonderful! I brought Jennifer to the bus stop, namiko and i went snowpants/watch battery hunting at walmart. Cici and I snagged dinner, then Josh came by and the three of us spent the evening searching out snowboardable snow.. to no avail... either way the hunt was a BLAST. we were laughing the whole time. There was a lot of falling and pushing and screaming and trying to sign and communicate.. good times. I love Cici by the way. I do.. I adore that girl. After snow fun.. we watched Kingdom of Heaven, which.. umm.. was.. alright. I wasn't thoroughly impressed by the movie.. but it was relatively interesting. Cici was dead asleep by the end of the night.. and Josh and I postponed our conversation til later because he had to work this morning..

So tonight Josh is picking me up at six. Everything is a surprise.. and I am quazi nervous.. I am excited to give him his christmas present which is a box full of..... jk. He'll read this I am sure.. bwa ha ha! victory once again!


For those of you expecting me for xmas break in michigan. I am leaving the state of VT at the arse crack of dawn on saturday.. I won't be to GH until probably closer to the 27th.. If I ever hear from Kathryn I am hoping to stay for a week or so.. and I need to be back here by the 15th latest. There might be a pitstop in east michigan on the way back.. and possibly another in Philadelphia :) Who knows ...

Thursday, December 13, 2007

An Image..

Ok so.. I have been praying for a friend of mine.. I'd like to say "you know who you are"but I realized that there are about 10 of my friends that would fit this description..... My friend is in a place where he is trying to make some decisions and listen for the call of God in his life to lead him in the right direction or give him insight into what God wants to do with him. He didn't give me too many details but asked me to pray for him as an intercessor (praying on behalf of someone, or in his stead.. this is a spiritual gift that I crave using, so if anyone needs prayer let me know if I can be a part of that)..

Now to clarify.. the past few months of my life have been pretty rocky in the spiritual arena, I have made some less than desirable choices, and sort of went through a phase of turning my face from God in shame, and in fear. I have posted on it before, but some of it was a need to have a season of anger.. I had some things built up that I needed to express to God. I can explain that more on a one-to-one basis if you are interested in hearing. You guys know me.. I love to wrestle through my experiences by sharing them with others. Wanna wrestle? haha.

So the point of this post:
All week I have had moments where I really wanted to just stop and pray. Names popping in my head, different situations. I would take a few minutes to satiate the craving, but never sat down to actually pray in depth about the situation. Finally Tuesday night after some good conversations with different people I set aside the time before bed to get down to business. Now those of you that know me and my spiritual gifts, when I pray for or over someone I usually pray in images. An image pops in my mind, and through describing it and walking through its different aspects and the key words that come out of that image, I end up with some sort of a "word", understanding or insight into the situation. I believe that this is God putting something on my heart, or the recollection of images from His word. Either way, though fallible because I am human, I believe it could be inspired by God.

Like I said before.. I started praying and ALLL of these names started popping into my head. I won't disclose all of those names here, but if you feel like you are one of them and want to leave a comment please do.

So the following scenario came into mind when I was praying and I will try to walk you through it as I experienced it as well because I think a lot of things came to light in the process rather than the ending image. I journaled this image, vision, visual whatever right after experiencing it so I will type what I wrote down as important to remember at the time.

So I was praying for my friends who seemed to be in a place where they no longer had direction.. and the image of being lost in the wilderness came to mind. Actually it was a scene from Man vs. Wild when Bear Grylls was in I think Africa (shout out to phil and brandon! Oh Bear!).. the middle of the desert. The question that came into my mind at that moment was "what now?" and I think that echoes a lot of the frustration that many of the young men in my life are experiencing (not that women aren't experiencing it as well, but I had this strong feeling that this was for the guys who I have been talking with the past two weeks or so..) They seem to be stuck in a place where they felt led to in the first place, but now they are in this tangle of wilderness where they can't see forward or back, they don't know what is "out there" and they are lost as to which direction to head. So the question developed into "When you are lost in the wilderness, what do you do?" The keyword that then came to mind was "Find your bearings" . Well that is all and good. Seems simple.. figure out where you are at now, and you will know where to go from there.. done and done. Yeah right! haha. So I kept exploring the idea.. How do you find your bearings when you are lost in the wilderness? Well.. ehem.. on Man vs. Wild he would do a few different things depending on the situation.
1. Find a High Place- mountain, cliff, overlook etc to survey the situation
2. Find a River- follow it downstream because usually water leads to life (isn't that the truth!)

Why? In order to get anywhere we need to direction, to get direction we need bearings, from bearings we get"GUIDEPOSTS" to direct us..... Those were the flow of words. Ending in Guidepost. i thought it was a strange word to pop in my head because I don't use it that often and I honestly wasn't sure if it was the right word for the case.. but I know my intuition so I trusted the word. And rightly looked it up:
1.a post, usually mounted on the roadside or at the intersection of two or more roads, bearing a sign for the guidance of travelers.
2.anything serving as a guide; guideline.

Despite this definition.. There wasn't much information in the dictionary.. which was intriguing so ofcourse the next logical step: I googled it :)

I found that "guidepost" is primarily a word used in devotional, religious language. There is a magazine, and some other things using this word. When I did a keyword search through a bunch of different translations.. the only verse that used that exact word was:

Jeremiah 31:21
"Set up road signs;
put up guideposts.
Take note of the highway,
the road that you take.
Return, O Virgin Israel,
return to your towns.

So what is the process then.. here at school the "process" is the most important point of everything we learn. Despite the process being important it is the goal and vision that guide this process.. So.. continuing prayerfully in this exploration. I came up with this:

1. Find a high place to reclaim the vision
This part was interesting to me. I remember thinking about how when you go to the top of a mountain or hill you can see for miles and miles and miles. You tend to log that picture away and when you get to the bottom, you still keep that vision of the land in mind. You feel like you know where you are within the scheme of that overall vision. But without that vision, you feel so small, and confused about where you fit in, and where you should go. When I was praying through it.. if felt like this was the first step to take, but I also felt like this wasn't the key point to the whole process. In fact I kept thinking well, many of my friends know to get away, to find a "high place" and re-engage the vision that God has for them.. rather the issue is where to go next, or what to do when you follow that vision and then still get lost in the wilderness at the foot of the mountain.
2. Find your bearings within this vision-
This one kind of threw me for a loop. I mean what does it mean to find your bearings.. figure out where you are? Figure out how you fit in? I mean it isn't quite to the point of deciding a direction.. but it is finding out where each direction could lead.. The other aspect of this that came out was the fact that even when you are at the top of the mountain, reclaiming your vision and finding your bearings.. you still only see part of the vision. I mean you don't see over the next mountain, or the next mountain.. just what lays directly around the mountain you are standing on. So this led to the idea that the need to find your bearings within the overall vision is a continuous process and that how well detailed those bearings are is up to God. If he decides to make it a cloudy day or clear skies, that could change how much of the vision you see, and how many mountains you see in the way.. which can change how you "find your bearings" and get to a point of deciding direction.


3. Set and follow guideposts in direction towards the goal of this vision
At this point comes the hard part. Deciding what direction. I think for me I struggled with this part the most because when we are trying to follow God's direction.. sometimes it is difficult to decide which direction is "God's direction". Do I follow the river towards a city? Do I head down the mountains in hopes of finding food and shelter? Do I head for the next peak? Well in my prayerful explorations.. I honestly didn't get anything to address this aspect. Anybody else have input? Is it just the feeling of calm? When you look out in the vision does one thing come into "clarity" while the rest blurs? I think it is different for everyone, and takes practice as well.

I think the trick is that once you have set your eyes on the goal, the other difficult part is setting guideposts. What will be the thing to consistently lead you in the right direction? The sun/stars? Different aspects of nature like the slope of the mountain or the current of the river? Whatever it is, it needs to be consistent with the goal.

This is the point in the prayer that I began to really feel out what some of the issues were.. so I am going to type out what I wrote at 1 in the morning ;) Some of it is echoed above.. but it is interesting to read the actual journal of how it came out on paper in the midst of it.

Notes-
While at a high place you may see miles and miles ahead, where a riverbed lies, in a valley over a peak, etc. Once you come down from the mountain, however, you need the guidepost to guide you through the wilderness. You may no longer see the mountain, but the sun is a constant, the stars are a constant. At times you will be in a clearing and see a few miles ahead, others yo will be in the thick of the forest barely able to see past the tree in front of you.

However. God can provide guideposts toward a goal.
God wants to give you the vision, but may not want you to see past a mountain or two.
Trusting God is not guessing that there is a city over the next mountain or being disappointed when there happens to be another mountain the "the way" or the city doesn't have running water.
Trusting God is not pride in "catching on" and foreseeing the city filled valley or lack of city within it.

Trust God's direction.
Trust God's nature to guide you.
Trust the guideposts.
Don't count on the high places to give you the details of the rocks and thorns you may trip over in the forest.
Expect challenges and experience the growth and building of new muscles.
Be prepared for predators and be grateful for the sustenance along the way (even if it is not as tasty as McDonalds)


So that was all very choppy and not very fluid.. but it was the gist of what I got the other night. I think there are some elements to be further explored, and some that hit me right where I am at. I am curious how others feel about it.. if they have any suggestions, or corrections, amendments or deletions. Would you tweak the wording? phrasing? What experiences come to mind when you read it? How do you feel about the idea of God bringing us visions and images of his nature, his words, and his guidance for us? What does the term Guidepost mean to you, and have you ever considered the idea of God as a guidepost? or God placing them in your life?

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Tired.

So I just reread my post and realized how discombobulated it was. I hope I didn't put off a weird idea of what I believe. I am still struggling... "work out your faith in fear and trembling" Phillipians 2.... anyway.. I am going to go attempt to finish this paper..

PS. We just watched the new harry potter.. it came out today. Man they did a great job with the movie. I was so impressed. Those books are incredible. Katy and I were talking about how related it is to social justice issues. I mean those books combat everything from racism (different types of "beasts", halfbreeds, "purebloods" etc ), sexism (Hermione and Ginny are great icons for woman power!), ageism (The premise is that these young kids CAN fight, and have that empowerment), classism (Weasley's vs. Malfoys.. both pureblood, but class divides them among other things), slavery (house elves), totalitarian regimes ("the ministry", Voldemort, even Dumbledore and Grindelwald's plan for a "new order").. I was thinking that there was also something to ableism...I couldn't explain out my examples.. but I was thinking Ron's "different intelligences other than book smarts/magic, Hagrid for the same reasons, also Neville and his issues with learning and how he really caught on to herbology but had issues with spells until the D.A. ..... anyway.. I am sure there is much much more, but that is what we came up with on the spot. It is interesting to begin to notice those things and I truly respect Rowling for her ability to bring so many issues through a book that will be read by future generations of world changers.. WOOT!
Ok.. so I need to sort some things out before I write my paper. And I thought I would bring this out for discussion.. I guess I just feel like it is something I have been struggling to decide for myself.

Like I said in a previous post I am writing a paper for my social identity class. I decided to use my gender identity: woman.. in case you were wondering.

So as I am looking at a few different identity development models I am intrigued. Here is one of them:

Feminist Identity Development Model (FID)- Downing and Roush
Stages:
Passive Acceptance: Woman accepts dominant societal meaning of traditional gender roles and believes they are advantageous

Revelation: A series of events or experiences propel the woman into a state of dualist thinking in which women are perceived positively and men are perceived negatively

Embeddedness-Emanation: Woman strongly connected to other women, surrounds herself with self affirming women's community in order to strengthen new identity.

Synthesis- Woman achieves an authentic and positive feminist identity in which gender role transcendence is coupled with the evaluation of men on an individual basis.

Active Commitment- Woman commits herself to meaningful action towards feminist goals.


Ok. So that's the model. Right now I have to figure out where, within these stages, I fit. Honestly I don't really know. I think this conversation with myself had taught me a lot about what I see is the role of a "man" more than what I see as the role of a "woman".

I guess the tension I feel is between my own independence and self empowerment and the roles that I feel God has laid out for men and women in marriage. I think that as my own entity, my own person, I am a very confident and strong woman. I don't "need" a man to make me whole, and I definitely believe that typical gender roles aren't set in stone and that different things ascribed to each can transcend from gender to gender. For instance being emotional is not only a womanly thing but also a manly thing. I don't think that a man who knows who he is and how he feels is any less manly than one who is rough and cold (actually to some extent I feel that the emotionally aware male is more man than a closed male.. does that make any sense?)

Despite my sense of self as an empowered, liberated and independent woman.. the tension I feel comes when discussing marriage, relationships etc. Many people get hung up on the verses that say "women submit to your husbands" and assume that means that they should be passive, unchallenging, and quietly accept abuse and the husband's "complete authority". I think that this is a definite misunderstanding of the biblical idea of marriage and submission. For me I read "Offer, give, present, yourselves as a partner to your husband". I don't read submit yourselves to the unquiestionable authority of man because he is man and man is man because he is man. My Bible reads "Womens submit to your wives as is fitting to the Lord." My Remix version reads "Wives, understand and support your husbands by submitting to them in ways that honor the Master" (Both Colossians 3:18) Ephesians 5:22 reads Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands as you do to the Lord (TNIV) and "Wives understand and support your husbands in ways that show your support for Christ." (Remix).. I mean those sound a lot different than the idea that most people have of a domineering man leading the family into destruction. I mean I think the later verses speak to that issue. I mean God has a big commandment for husbands in marriage too. And I often think that for men, this can be quite a daunting task.

Ephesians 5:25-30
Husbands love your wives, just as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word, and to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or wrinkle or any other blemish, but holy and blameless. In this same way, husbands out to love their wives as their own bodies, He who loves his wife loves himself. After all, people have never hated their own bodies, but they feed and care for them, just as Christ does the church- for we are members of His body..."

I mean that is huge! Where we are merely commanded to respect, honor and understand, they are commanded to love us like Christ loves the church!!! wow! I think that is an incredible thing.

Another aspect that often gets twisted around is the verse that talks about "Husbands as the head of the family as Christ is head of the church" They use the term "head" referring to the fact that the church is the body of Christ, and Christ is the head etc. I think many look at this verse and see that there are distinct gender roles playing out. For instance the "head" representing intelligence vs. "body" representing work, bearing children, and inability to make any choices. I don't think that this is what Paul was getting at when he wrote this letter. I think it had something to do with roles, but more in the sense of partnership and referring back to the different needs in a family

I have often heard this talked about in the sense that if a partnership has two people who want the completely different things, with the same amount of authority and no outside guidance, nothing will ever get done. This makes me think of a lot of the marriages I know. For me the idea of a partnership and a need for one person to have a different authority makes sense. I guess I think back to OB1 (because all discussions go back to my first class here at SIT on Organizational Behavior.. focusing on interpersonal dynamics in team settings) and the difference between facilitation and leadership. To me the difference is the need or presence for authority and direction. Leaders have the authority to make decisions, although they look to the team to provide decisions, support and debate. Facilitators tend to direct the conversations, check on process, and allow space for decisions to be made as a team, but if there are big decisions to be made and no consensus can be found, typically it is the facilitators job to make the best choice for the team based on the overall vision. I guess for me when I look at the idea of a husband being the "head" of a family.. I look more towards the facilitator role, with a little bit of leader mixed in. I guess the hook (and hope) is that within a faithful Christian family both partners should be looking to Christ as the vision, so even when "consensus" cannot be made, the husbands decision should still line up with the vision of Christ and his desires for that family. This changes a lot. When we think about the fact that both husband and wife are in submission to God first, then why would it be such a horrible thing to "submit" to the husband who should be following God's call (and therefore your own) in the first place. Although the idea of submission has been distorted, and although man's role as husband within Christianity has been distorted (especially after many years of masculine, male dominated institutions and societies), the Truth remains that God himself has set forth the image and example for what a husband looks like. And as a woman, if I were to marry a man who was striving to be that example.. I would not fear this scary thing called submission. Because to me, "supporting and understanding" a man who "cherishes me as Christ cherishes the church" is like allowing God to take control of my life.... he loves me, he wants the best for me, and he has the wisdom to make the right choices in my stead. A man looking to exemplify Paul's idea of "head of the family" will be seeking God's call first for me and my family.. I can't foresee that being a disempowerment, but rather an empowerment to know that I have support, that I can challenge it if I feel it is NOT what God is calling (because ultimately that is the family's vision), and to know that no matter what God is in control of everything anyway. Another tidbit is that God never calls women to submit to abuse, or dominance.. rather he states "submit to your husbands as is fitting to the Lord" and later tells husbands to cherish and not domineer the wives.. anyway.. love is not equal to abuse. Submission does not mean passive acceptance.


Now i need to go relax and watch harry potter before actually writing this paper. ugh. tired

Sunday, December 09, 2007

I WENT TO CHURCH TODAY!

Man today is going to be a good one. That song "this is the day that the lord has made" is going through my head. I forget sometimes how much energy I gain from being in the midst of community, even a community I am not very familiar with yet. Varghese came with me today to check out Agape Christian Fellowship. It has been on my lists of churches in Brattleboro, and I gotta say... I really loved it. It seemed like a vibrant group of people, with lots of energy and love to share. We met up with Josh and sat with he and Anne. It was good to see her. I think the last time I saw her I was still crazy stuck in my petrified stage, not really knowing how to communicate. It was good to feel like a real person again, even if I couldn't really think of anything to say other than.. I'm good how are you? hahah.. oh well. Next time I guess.

So this afternoon I am beginning to work on my Social Identity Paper. It is sort of strange. I mean the two identities that I have been working and struggling through this semester are being "hearing" identified and oddly enough being "female". As far as recognizing my identity as hearing goes, I am still struggling through that one. I think being friends with and getting to know Josh (shoutout!) has helped in speeding up the process of working through that identity, but I am definitely still working through it. As far as gender identity goes, I chose this as second choice to struggling through my identity as a Christian. I was going to use that one, but I couldn't decide if I could consider it an "oppressed" identity. It feels like it is, I mean it is at the very least the least represented at the school, and I feel like the identity is stigmatized as the cause of all the evils in the world we as students are trying to change and improve.. I chose gender identity instead because I don't think I have ever really looked at my gender identity development. Gender roles play such a huge part in who I am as a Christian, American, etc. I feel like moving to Texas brought some tension to how I envision myself as a woman within the church. I struggled with my lack of ability to pray in front of the congregation, to take leadership roles within the communities, and other things that came up while in the midst of Church of Christ country. I was raised as an empowered leader, strong woman and warrior of God, and someone who knows that if something needs to happen, I need to be the one to "step up" and be proactive to make changes. Coming to SIT it has been strange because although I am empowered as a woman, I am assumed to be disempowered due to being a Christian. I don't know how I am going to articulate this tension in my paper.. but I need to find away to do it.


I just watched a little bit of the Gladiator and a snippet of the Matrix while eating dinner with Cici downstairs.. great films.

This is how I feel:

Friday, December 07, 2007

Exerpts from books I am currently reading:

Spiritual:
"since God has so generously let us in on what he is doing, we're not about to throw up our hands and walk off the job just because we run into occasional hard times. We refuse to wear masks and play games. We don't maneuver and manipulate behind the scenes. And we don't twist God's Word to suit ourselves. Rather, we keep everything we do and say out in the open, the whole truth on display, so that those who want to can see and judge for themselves in the presence of God"
2 Corinthians 4: 1-2 (Message: Remix)

Language practice:
<<>> pensó el muchacho mientras intentaba una vez más leer la escena del entierro con que se iniciaba el libro. <>. Incluso sin un rey que lo interrumpiese, no lograba concentrarse. Todavía estaba en duda con respecto a su decisión. Pero se estaba percantandode una cosa importanteÑ las decisiones eran sólo el comienzo de algo. Cuando alquien tomaba una decisión, en realidad estaba sumergiéndose en una corriente poderosa, que lleva a la persona a un lugar que nunca había soñado a la hora de decidir.
El Alquimista by Paulo Coehlo

Inspiration for work:
As younger generations of Christian leaders honestly face our shared history, they can begin to imagine a different role for our churches in the future, in hopes of creating a different path for their nations, a different world for their children. This shared dissatisfaction, together with this shared imagination and hope, combine to form an emerging consensus that is spreading across the global South.
Everything Must Change: Jesus, Global Crises, and a Revolution of Hope by Brian McLaren

Fun/Fiction:
"Soon the pretties were all loaded into the helicopter, and the two villagers stepped back, waving and smiling. Tally didn't wait for it to take off. She headed southward down the coast, back in the direction it had come from, staying below the cliffs to keep out of sight. The trick would be waiting until the machine was far enough from the villagers before climbing into the open sky. After weeks of hiding, she didn't want to be spotted this close to her goal. Tally had never pussed a Special Circumstances board as fast as it could go. Unlike hoverboards designed for randoms, the Cutter's didn't have safety features to keep you from doing anything stupid."
Specials by Scott Westerfeld

Stretch, Challenge:
"Defining patriotism as obedience to government- as an uncritical acceptance of any war the leaders of government decide must be fought-- has been disastrous for the American people. Failure to distinguish between the country and the government has led so many young people, recruited into the military, to declare that they would be willing to die for their country. Would not those young people hesitate before enlisting if they considered that they were not risking their lives for their own country, but for the government, and even for the owners of great wealth, the giant corporations connected to the government?"
A Power Governments Cannot Suppress by Howard Zinn

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Support the Writers Strike. Cuz life would suck crack without them.

http://www.petitiononline.com/WGA/petition.html

Things I love

I am hooked on a few things right now:

www.illustrationfriday.com


a good site for doodle junkies. the website is good but the blog is fun too.. they post new artists every once and awhile and it is quite inspiring

www.postsecret.com
people send in their secrets on homemade postcards. intriguing, scary, funny.. all of the above.

www.freerice.com
a good alternative to sudoku, free cell and other time wasters.. donates a grain of rice per word or something to that effect.

www.rockthevote.com
Interesting facts about voter rights for students and the fight to uphold them.

www.foundmagazine.com
another cool art project. they post photos of found stuff.. it is really interesting.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Today was a curious day. I woke up to my alarm going off at like 11:30am. Woah way to sleep in. I guess that is ok because I stayed up talking to Cici about God knows what til 1:42 exactly. Before that I saw the latest Heroes epi which was INCREDIBLE. I made sure to send texts to Brandon in hopes that he would go watch it immediately and we could discuss it. He did, and we did. It was good to talk to him and catch up again. It is always so few and far between :( At some point last night, I had a few hours that were mixed with TDEL, convos with Josh, messages from Brownie, and Cici yelling at me to come check out her Eharmony personality thing. Yes brooke, I convinced her to take it because it is always crazy accurate, almost as accurate as the Marie Claire horoscopes.. which was hysterical. I just reread Novembers and about died laughing. I refuse to post it.. REFUSE because I don't want anyone to make assumptions.. but holy crap.. Brooke you need to call me. We need to catch up. :)

Tomorrow is my TDEL presentation. I am super excited to get it over with and to present it because the training is good info and tools. I also think it is a training that I could facilitate with the youth if they wanted to learn how to travel on a budget... it is actually interesting I promise.

So.. I am yet to hear from BN in Michigan.. thats nothing new. I also haven't heard from Kathryn about whether I can stay with her.. which is also nothing new.. and my car is snowed in at the moment. So lots to do before xmas break and all.

Momma you need to call me this week.. the phone cut off when grandma picked it up ;) miss you! And I have lots and lots of news for you! btw did you ever talk to drew?

Monday, December 03, 2007

I got my wish!!


So.. it snowed.
Class was canceled.
I went sledding.
More pics to come.

Sunday, December 02, 2007

SNOW PLEASE

So.. It is 11:36pm and I am praying it snows like crazy tonight. Not because I want to make a snowman tomorrow.. although I do.. and not because I crave sledding.. though I do.. and not because I want to have a jw vs gamble snowball fight.. something which is very important to me.. but rather.. because I really don't want to present this article in class tomorrow.. it is an article by Samir Amin about Capitalism and the Pauperization of the global agriculturals something or other. boo.

On a lighter note today was the Eki-den race and it was a lot of fun to watch. I was very tired this morning after a night of nightmares and interrupted sleep. But it was good to see everyone, I was glad that Josh came out to run, and we surprised him with a birthday cake! What a cool old senile dude. hahah :P

I started looking at my class schedule for next semester.. looks pretty good. I might take a budgeting and financial management class if I can fit it in. I need the practical skills in money stuff, and it would make my dad happy. Merry xmas!! haha. Ill be taking a few training courses, and education for social justice class , and maybe a social justice issues course too. Plus I am signed up for ASL at Austine.. so that will be a good time.

So as far as my workload this week goes:

Monday: Snowday.. or presentation of article (which is only like 5 min of talking and more discussion stuff.. I don't think my article will spark too much.. luckily)

Tuesday: possible meeting with PI group, definite meeting with my TDEL group to get our training ready for wed.

Wednesday: TDEL training
Thursday: PI and research stuff
Friday: SI, presentation of Stretching Exercise, Research
Saturday: Research, PI mtg probably
Sunday: JW brunch, Research/writing
Monday: kill me now presentation for SJ

ugh. boo. oh well

Underfunded Schools Forced To Cut Past Tense From Language Programs

Underfunded Schools Forced To Cut Past Tense From Language Programs

Monday, November 26, 2007

Sweet Pea made it...

So my little car and I made it back to Vermont. We crashed through mountains, over big bridges, crossed a few islands and sated our international travel bug with a quick sneak through Canada. Sounds a lot more appealing than it was, but I actually didn't mind the drives. I find it relaxing in the midst of all the stress. My butt hurts from sitting, but my mind is happy from not thinking about anything useless. I got to ponder people, faith, family, school, future, puppies, and other such glorious things.

I realized a lot of things.. many of which I am still struggling through and not yet ready to share with the world. I'll let you know ..maybe :P

I do hope I get to live with Kathryn for xmas break. I was relaxed and happy to be with her. She is fantastic, and though I didn't get to hang out with andy much, he seems like a cool guy. It was also nice to be living with animals again, much to steve's dismay (you hissed more than the cat did :P). I have grown up with pets all my life and then last year with Jack, emmy etc. There is something comforting about animals. Maybe its the fact that they are rarely mean, they don't talk back, and they will listen to you complain. Pretty much they are stress free cuddle buddies. Even the crazy cat was sweet. haha.

I am off to prioritize and get some work done

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Oh Canada..well then Michigan.

So my journey to Thanksgiving in Michigan has been quite adventurous thus far. I got up Thursday morning at the crack of dawn as intended, and looked out the window to see snow. Why yes.. thats what I said. SNOW. Brattleboro got its first dumping the morning I needed to drive out. Now typically this would be no big deal, except that it is a fresh dumping of powder over ice, my tires are pretty bald, and in order to get to drivable roads I have to wind down from the mountain on curvy roads with big fat ditches. Well I got out to Kipling rd.. the road right off campus thinking maybe it would be ok.. it was like 830 so they "should" be plowed.. wrong. I turned on to the road and fish tailed for like 30 ft before finally conning my car into a 180 so I could grind my tires back up the hill and onto campus. I went back to bed and waited.. the weather folk were telling me that it was supposed to rain and warm up by noon. So around noon I checked the roads; all were salted, sanded, plowed and drivable. SO onwards and upwards I jumped in the car. Typically I hate driving long trips later in the day. Something about leaving early... I don't know.. maybe because I can sleep in til noon. so if half of my driving is done by the time I would wake up it definitely makes the drive feel quicker.. Well I didn't hit Canada until about like 930 or something like that.. which was 2 hours past the time I had hoped to already be in Michigan. I didn't get to dads til about 230am. yuck.

Well after a few minutes of chats some ravioli and a couple covered yawns (ehem.. piercing.. ehem) we crashed. Today we went to see Beowulf. In digital 3d. It was pretty good and I only screamed a few times. I have issues with 3d. It really freaks me out. When Nate, Lyd, Shyle and I went to Kings Island for a Third Day concert in 2003 we went on the sponge bob 3d ride and I was the only one freaking out.. I believe that I can be proud of my consistency.

Tomorrow, thanksgiving, dad and I are heading to Mike, Kris and Brian's house for the meal and hanging out. Then Friday Dad is riding with me to Grand Rapids, where Ill meet Wendy, and then Ill continue on to GH for fri/sat. I think Friday Ill go say hi to the frisbee folk then meet up with steve and hang out with kathryn too. Saturday I am hoping to see some of the youth group buddies.. I have heard from Abbey, Bethany, and Tyler so far. I am hoping to see mitch this weekend too.. after my dream I realize I miss the kid a lot. My forever brother he will always be.

Friday, November 16, 2007

This is what I do during my Thursday Practitioner Inquiry Class






Plans for Vacation

So today is Friday right? Yup. I checked. OK well tonight I am going to the Multicultural Fashion show with my new friend Josh. We hung out with him last night at Austine School for the deaf. He is such a patient guy teaching us new signs and trying to communicate. I appreciate it a lot that he would invest so much in new friends. Anyway he is coming tonight too so that will be fun.

There is a big party after tonight that I do not plan to attend. I have to leave pretty early tomorrow to go to PHILADELPHIA!!! YAY! I am super excited to see my family tomorrow. I miss everyone so much. I need to pick up a few things too. My guitar for one. A crockpot, a few books etc. I will be going to church on Sunday then heading back here for monday and class.

Then on Tuesday morning I am heading out to Michigan via Albany-> Canada-> Ann Arbor. We'll see how well that goes. Ive never done that drive. REMEMBER YOUR PASSPORT.

I will be in Ann Arbor Tues, Wed, Thurs and possibly part of Friday. But I plan to leave Friday at some point so I can be in GH by 5 at the latest. That will give me Friday night and all day and night Saturday. Ill hit the road Saturday morning. I wish I could stick around for church but I don't know if Ill have the energy. It is harder for me to drive at night than in the morning. Which is weird because I am definitely a night person :)

I am hoping to hang with Steve at some point, Abbey and Bethany, Ill be staying with Kathryn, and hopefully Ill get to see Russ, Lacey, Dave, and others. Im sad Lydia and Shyle moved. There is rumor Mitch will be in town-> I miss that kid so much its hard to breathe. I would love to see my real brother too but the number I have for him doesn't work! Maybe I'll hang out with Brian Zajac at some point, and any others who find themselves in the vicinity. Ill be back around for xmas break so that will be fun. If I don't see you this time around Ill see you in a few weeks!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

I am bored. I have work to do. but i am still bored.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Friday:
- Presentation for Social Identity on Class and classism in the US, Indonesia and Cuba.
- Meeting with Janaki about all sorts of goodness including finding out that she actually does support the things I want to do. But she still ripped it to shreds and smiled afterwards. I love her.
- Went to Sam's Outdoor something or other and bought some super cozy gloves and hats for mom and I.. yikes on the bill though :(
- Went to Borders and bought the next to books in the youth fiction series I got hooked on.
- Came home and read one of them. yes. thats right.. I finished it.
- Watched Babel with Cece. I was not thrilled. It wasn't up to par with all the hype but it was interesting.
- Happy Birthday Grandma Phyllis! I got all your messages. We miss you.

Saturday:
- Woke up at 11. But didn't ever see 11:11 (first time since monday.)
- Cleaned my room
- Did my laundry. I hadn't in about two weeks and it was scary.
- Wandered campus with The Alchemist. Escaped to the woods before realizing I could get shot by hunters or eaten by the bears.
- Watched Men in Trees.
- Contemplated studying
- Contemplated being social.

I am now about to start reading the next book. I crave some time to relax without people, or the need to change the world in one fell swoop.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Things I want to do:

1.) Develop a program for youth that explores how social identity, faith identity and social justice are so tightly interwoven.

2.) Get out of the states for a few months to just explore life, explore humanity, and love it.

3.) Break bad habits, learn new ones. Learn a useful skill. and teach one too.

4.) Dedicate more time to the youth who have change my life more than I have theirs.

5.) Stay up all night under the stars, see a sunrise, see the deer in the woods and just feel it all.

6.) Organize my life and keep it that way. My room is always counterproductively messy.

7.) Dedicate my energy to a project and stay energized.

8.) Go out on a limb for my practicum, find something daring and adventurous.

9.) Write in Colbert on the presidential docket.

10.) Drink máte. Right now.

Hmmm..

A) I think I am saved from the wrath of my misspellings. I sent a confirmation email to Reg at World Vision with a corrected attachment. A few hours later I got an email from a lady who works with the West Virginia/Appalachia programs saying she was sending it in to HR. So hopefully that means that he just remembered and sent the new version. Does that sound logical?


B) I have a big presentation on Classism on Friday for Social Identity. My "part" of the research was on Cuba but I sort of slacked off. I got distracted by other things and pretty much just gave up. It was difficult to find an array of information on Cuba let alone recent research on its class structure post the legalization of the dollar. Anyway. I volunteered to be more involved with the activity facilitation and discussion plus put together the powerpoint. I feel better about it but I still sort of feel myself slacking. On a lighter note I finished my ICC paper in record time with good confidence that I will pass, and we had our last class period today (it is only two credits so only 8 weeks of class) SO that is one full day during the week that I will have free to catch up on all my other stuff.


C) I started reading Everything Must Change by Brian Mclaren. I had heard of his books and Steve just finished the trilogy (New Kind of Christian etc). He always intrigued me. I have heard him quoted in a lot of the sermons that really resonate with me so I was excited to dig in. I really like it so far. It is doing a great job of ripping apart the institution and historically horrible track record of Christianity in exchange for a faith that is actually focused on Jesus' goals, actions and most importantly hopes. It feels good to read a book that resonates with my heart at this moment. I feel like the weight of Christianity's horrible past has been on my shoulders a little bit at this school and I'm ready to give it UP. I can't blame people for judging the failure of christianity. I can't blamed them for feeling judged by it. I can show them that I love them. I had a realization about this very fact the other day. I said something using the word hate to my dad.. not at him just in conversation. He said, you know I have never heard you say that about someone before. As he said that I realized I didn't even mean it. There are a few people in my life I feel like I should be allowed to hate. But I still don't when I think about it deep deep down. Sometimes I feel like my dad's 77x7 times of forgiveness is about to run up, but it never does.

One thought: part of it goes all the way back to freshman year in highschool. The one person in the world that I have ever truly hated, and felt it, was Ryan Lyles. I remember the night I felt confident enough to say that phrase, "I hate him" coming up from a belly full of anger, hurt, and to pull from class 'internalized oppression. As I said it the many scenes of my worst years flashed through my head. In the midst of my family falling apart he used me as a pinata for his cruelest tricks. Now I know that it wasn't always him, and that at one time we might have been friends, or friends of friends at least. I think he was just the face that I focused it all on. I assumed he was the pack leader. I remember the taunts, the ridicule, the abuse, the depression, the longing to be accepted, the acceptance it would never happen. I remember consoling myself by hanging out with other people, yet knowing that I was being betrayed by my former friends with every step. Beautifully, in the midst of this a friend pulled me to youth group and God sort of plucked me out of that oppression, gave me hope and a cause. He gave me responsibility, leadership, and most importantly empowerment. Despite that, my freshman year I still remember harboring that hatred. The anger that all boiled into this one sack of hideous flesh. I remember being at the football game, it was dark, it was noisy. He passed and grimaced at me while doing so. I remember saying out loud : I HATE HIM. Later that night he and three of his friends stole a car and crashed into a tree, all four dying within minutes.

Now that is a long story merely to say that I don't think I have ever felt that hatred towards another human being again. Maybe it is because I have been empowered out of that internalized oppression, maybe because my heart healed in forgiveness, though a little to late. Possibly it was due to just never going through hell again like I did those few horrible years, praise God. All I know is that it is amazing to me that I can realize that I really don't hate anyone. It is odd alone that that is a surprise, but also a relief.

Now that I know I don't hate anyone, where do I go next. Can one not hate, but still not love? I feel like deep down I love everyone. I love you for instance, it doesn't matter who you are. God created you, God gave you life, and that is amazing to me. So whoever you are know that I love you. But that is not the question of the day. Love should be a verb should it not? So even if that layer of sentiment exists, where does action then come into play? How can I love my fellow human beings, on a personal and even individual way? I think Jesus had the answers. I think I'm gonna keep searching that out.

Sorry for the unintended ramble, but I guess I'm not really here to entertain you (i still love you!) so whatever. The point of today is to say I want to start exploring more. Venturing out with humanity in tow. Understanding more of my place within humanity and how I can make a difference within that world.

Sunday, November 04, 2007

Blew my chances :)

So much for working at World Vision. hahah.. so I was checking something the other day and I realized World Vision is not Worldvision. So throughout that splendidly crappy cover letter.. I spelled the name of the organization wrong. Thats what the internet does to you. Blast www.worldvision.com for ruining me. haha.. woops.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

WORLD VISION!

So yesterday morning I emailed Lisa Sickler. She was one of the women we worked with in Reynosa when I went with youth group through World Servants. I emailed her to sort of spark her memory of me and see if she had any leads on places I could talk to about possible practicums or jobs. She emailed me back saying she would talk to her dad, who works at World Vision, and I would hear from him in about a week. So he emails me two hours later asking for my "letter of introduction" aka my cover letter. Panicking I called the PDRC and asked if there was any way I could meet with them, there just happened to be a cover letter workshop last night. SO I went to the cover letter workshop and learned all there is to learn about cover letters. I went home and called dad. He had some great encouragement and advice. So last night and this morning I tried my hardest to write a kickass coverletter. I think it was only kickbutt but it will function. I had issues because the organization is faith-based yet still very professional. This tension brings in different aspects of what they want to hear. They want to know I'll be a good example, that I have a faith in line with their own, and also that I am competent, experienced and interculturally savvy. So it was a rather long cover letter.. but not over one page as I was strictly instructed. I feel like I narrated more than I should but I already emailed it to him so lets cross our fingers.. and by that I mean pray.

The good thing is that I know God is so much bigger than networking. I trust him to make the right connections and he will impassion the right people to hire me. My hope is to be getting a hundred phone calls a day asking for me to work for THEM. hahah.. doubtful.. and scary.

The best thing about this scenario is that I know Lisa and Pattie.. and Lisa is way dependable. Ehem. So if all else fails and I can't find anything else to do.. I can always fall back on them to hook me up with something through World Servants. Ah well. I have higher hopes than that.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

A great day.

Today was a good day all around. I blame phil for giving me some hope yesterday.

Got a message from Jon Striker today. What a guy. I haven't talked to him in so long, it was great to hear he is alive and well. Another one off the market :)

So I bought Ghost Peeps yesterday. that made me smile.. but they have these eyes that are made out of weirdness and that part isn't tasty at all.

Im so proud of myself for drinking a lot of water again. I am regaining a little energy that was much needed.

I played with my camera for awhile today.. self portraits and the like. trying to get used to the lighting issues, flashes, etc. I hate not being familiar with a camera.. you never know what is best for each camera.. unfortunately the flash on my camera is SO bright that self portraits with flashes make you look white as a ghost.. ill have to figure that one out.. any suggestions?

I haven't heard anything from the bank about my free ipod.. i hope they follow through or i will be sad. I am in NEED.. not need really.. but id like something to help me escape the chaos of campus and be able to just go walk in my own little world.

I ate a kiwi today and thought of phil :P

Today in training design, katy and i had to demonstrate an experiential learning technique. We wanted to be crafty so we did "construction" we had the students get into pairs, discuss different roles they play in society, and then using everything from paper to feathers create a hat that represents this role. It was pretty funny and katy and i got to make little "buddies" out of pipe cleaners. here they are:

Complete by Stephen Speaks

If i lay my voice
down at Your feet
would you still hear
my song echoing
i might end this game
of hide and seek
because in You

i am complete
oh in You
i am complete

all the voices i hear in my sleep
all the sins of my past echoing
to stay off my knees
and on my feet

oh but they,
they can't complete
cause in You i am complete

Monday, October 15, 2007

Katydid!

So kathryn answered her phone and I officially have a bed to rest in in Michigan. I'm sure I could crash at my brothers but I haven't talked to him in ages.. so I should take care of that before using him for a couch.

I still have a lot of reading.. and I accidentally slept in again. i need to stop doing that. oh well a few hours before class still ill be fine...

All of my reading last night was history related..

One book Eight Eurocentric Historians was a critique on the main schools of thought regarding the european rise to capitalism and their supposed superiority. So far I have gotten through the chapters on Weber, White and Brenner. Its pretty interesting. Actually its almost sad in a way that these historians can so easily be deconstructed and discreditied. I should probably learn the author of the books name, since I now believe he's on a roll.


I am also reading A Different Mirror, which is a survey of US history through the eyes of the minorities and immigrants. It is pretty interesting so far. I like the style of writing. It reminds me of A Peoples History, but its a little different.

We read a lot of excerpts from The Mismeasure of Man, which is utterly fascinating
The Roots of Racism a speech by Fidel Castro

Id love to read more Howard Zinn, W.E.B. Dubois

Sunday, October 14, 2007

On a lighter note..

Last night was a relaxing movie night in Janeway. Today is work til you drop day.... I have a lot more reading to do than I convinced myself of. SO ill be getting on that soon enough..

I am excited for Halloween, and then stoked for Thanksgiving. Kathryn needs to answer her phone :(

Thursday, October 11, 2007

An email a friend recieved:

(email from a friend:) We just got phone call with our sister living
in Yangon about a few hours ago. (name withheld for privacy; this is
a credible source who was speaking with an American who is living in
Burma--the following is info from that phone call)

We saw on BBC world, saying that 200 monks were arrested. The true
picture is far worse!!!!!!!!!

For one instance, the monastery at an obscure neighborhood of Yangon,
called Ngwe Kyar Yan (on Wei-za-yan-tar Road, Yangon) had been raided
early this morning.

A troop of lone-tein (riot police comprised of paid thugs) protected
by the military trucks, raided the monastery with 200 studying monks.
They systematically ordered all the monks to line up and banged and
crushed each one's head against the brick wall of the monastery. One
by one, the peaceful, non resisting monks, fell to the ground,
screaming in pain. Then, they tore off the red robes and threw them
all in the military trucks (like rice bags) and took the bodies away.

The head monk of the monastery, was tied up in the middle of the
monastery, tortured, bludgeoned, and later died the same day, today.
Tens of thousands of people gathered outside the monastery, warded
off by troops with bayoneted rifles, unable to help their helpless
monks being slaughtered inside the monastery. Their every try to
forge ahead was met with the bayonets.

When all is done, only 10 out of 200 remained alive, hiding in the
monastery. Blood stained everywhere on the walls and floors of the
monastery.

Please tell your audience of the full extent of the fate of the monks
please please !!!!!!!!!!!!

'Arrested' is not enough expression. They have been bludgeoned to
death!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Another day shot...

So today wouldve been my day to get all my work done. why you ask? because I had a morning class and I wouldve had all afternoon and evening set aside for studying/writing etc. Well that was shot at 4am this morning when I awoke from my own death. Yes.. thats right.. people can die in their dreams. My mom and I died in a car accident in my dream last night. This is the second time I have died in my dreams. The first time was with jenni shepherd in high school about a month after 9/11. We both had the same dream that our school blew up and we and our friends who were with us died. I woke up with this buzzing feeling and the visual of floating above and seeing everything that was going on, but still feeling a peace. Much like what I would assume going to heaven might feel like.. or the intermediary part of that.

Unfortunately last nights dream was worse. Once the car crashed instead of zipping out of body and watching from above I felt hot. Not like skin crackling fire hot, more like internal body heat, fever kind of heat. On top of that I wanted to cry out, to have a feeling, sadness anger, fear but I couldn't it was this flat horrible apathy that I couldn't break out of. I couldn't speak, I couldn't hear anything but my own thoughts about how I wish I could talk with God, reach out to him and have him be there like he always is. Part of me realized that I do take that for granted. When I pray I do feel like someone is there recieving it, it isn't just going out into nothingness. This part of the dream if felt like I was in an everything proof box.. (not to be confused with a coffin.. but more of a metaphorical box). Like no matter what I said or felt, all my energies remained with me, all my feeling, all my lack of feeling.

A few things I realized about myself:

I hate my own apathy and lack of emotion. I have always struggled with passionately praying for the things that mean the most. It is rare that I have pleaded for anything. There are only a few people in the world who I have wrestled with God over. I think my experiences with the charismatic in high school have given me this fear. The fear that emotion is taking over the grounding in Truth. I saw people get swallowed up in the physical and spiritual experience without grounding it in the Truth, the Word, and the foundation needed to sustain life with this power. I need to reclaim that balance. I don't want to be apathetic. I despise apathy because I think it kills the soul. I want to feel the anger and fear and pain and joy and excitement of faith.

I am scared my mom will just give up. In my dream she let go of the wheel, and even though she was completely at peace with it (and I don't think the fact I was dying with her had anything to do with it.. I don't think it was her "bringing me down" too or anything) it still angered me a little. I will admit i was jealous of the peace I saw on her face, and I don't know if my mom has found that peace, but I do know that I hope she doesn't just give up. I love you mom. Don't give up. I know you are a fighter.. and I also know you are probably tired.

Funny enough part of the dream had something to do with worship. I love to sing, and I love to go to worship services where it is loud with great music and lots of excited people because I can "jam out" and sing my heart out without worrying about following the words. It can just bubble out of me in whatever way my voice feels in can contribute to the chorus. Sometimes my singing worship can be very heartfelt, but other times I just show off to myself. I love singing Jennifer Knapp etc because it is fun to sing. I think I need to start paying more attention to the words.

Lastly and related: I was singing the tune of JKnapps song His Grace is Sufficient, but I kept adding in that His Grace is Addictive too. Ill leave that one to simmer..

Luckily I journaled right after my dream and thank you to the many who walked me through my morning. I was so tired at lunch after not being able to sleep post death that I slept all afternoon and only just finished my dinner ready to get to work. that is 6 whole hours of study time lost. hopefully Ill have the energy to stay up and work.. but thank you to Brooke, Daniel, Steve and my Mom for talking to me. i don't think my prof noticed me texting in class.. i hope not. I barely spoke to anyone this morning and everyone knew something was wrong but i just couldn't digest it all. I can't explain how real this dream was.

DONT TRY IT ITS NOT FUN

Sunday, October 07, 2007

Today was a weird day. Just weird. Didn't get a whole lot of work done, disc was poor, and awkwardness with people was at an all time high. oh well. I helped put together cici's shelf. And I got free pizza, and i talked to my mom.. which was happy.


prayer has helped me today. I am trying to come "home" a little bit more each day, and I can feel the stress rolling off my shoulder. He really will carry your burdens if you invite him in. I think everyone should try it at some point in their life, God will come through.

Saturday, October 06, 2007

So...

This is what I am thinking..........


I think I am going to drive to Michigan for Thanksgiving. I am pretty sure it is only about 12 hours.. if I drive through Canada... I need some time to just relax and think.. Flying is so stressful sometimes.. That way I can do thanksgiving with my dad/fam, and then head to grand haven for a few days and see people.. I am sad I won't get to see shyle and nate, or lydia and scott, everyone moved! but Ill get to see a lot of other people I am craving hugs from.. so that will be nice.

Pray for me this week as I struggle to get work done.. and to work through a lot of conflicting emotions.
Well last night was the party in Keene. It was a blast. Craziness, drama, and some awesome people. We had a pretty great time so thanks to the boys for letting us join in on some new england good times. Now I need to get to the grindstone and church out some reading and papers. If I get enough done today Ill be heading to the Salsa Party tonight ... if not.. its ok.. Ill have disc tomorrow to use as a catharsis.

Last night brought up the same old emotions once again. I gotta figure out what I want pretty quick here or Im just going to destroy myself emotionally with the games. Im obviously being vague if you couldn't tell.. but there is some reality to the statements. I just have some decisions to make...

I miss you brooke.. I miss our talks. call me.

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Whoops to Facebook.

I forgot these post automatically to facebook.. hehe.. sorry for the "cursing". Its a good thing I don't gossip.. too much. Cuz that would've been awkward.

Man it is a nice and comfortable 10:30.. I had four alarms go off this morning to wake me up. Why is it that the one morning I decide to sleep in (til 10) I have a zillion alarms go off, but the one day I have to be somewhere at 8:30am, they all fail. I guess thats just one of those things God lets happen to "humble" you.. hahaha...

Well this afternoon I have Training Design for Experiential Learning... aka TDEL .. gotta love the acronyms. It seems like it is going to be one of those "practical" classes rather than the discussion/deconstructive classes. So it will be more of a relief than anything. They told me going into Social Justice as a concentration that it was intense emotionally as well as academically.. I believe them. My heart and mind are TIRED. Deconstructing yourself day after day is tough. but soooo good.

Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Shit. Its October.

Well one month has passed in beautiful Vermont.

Today was an eventful day. ICC-Deaf Culture was super intense today. Shyle I will always think of you when working with sign language. Today's class was focused on deconstructing our self and bias and issues. It was very heavy, very hard but very educational. After class I drove to Keene to deposit my check at bank of america, and took the time to relax and really enjoy being myself. I ate a quesadilla at the local mexican burrito joint, did a tiny bit of journaling and enjoyed the good weather. Its like a vacation driving just 30 minutes away. You drive through the mountains where all the leaves are changing, up and around winding through the hills until you reach a town where no one knows you. I mean I know the guys but there was such a slim chance to see them.

I decided to drop Mandarin. I just feel like I need a time during the day a few times a week where I can journal, pray, think, whatever.. this place is so intense emotionally.. I feel like Ill need the time to release.

Monday, October 01, 2007

Well a slight update..

Church on sunday was aight. Nothing too grand. I will move on to the next one.. Got my response to the MLK Jr. Letter from a Birmingham jail written about 15 minutes before due.. good work phyl.. ugh.


I am frustrated about Burma. I want to do something... I know that they are doing a wear red day on campuses on Friday.. I feel like SIT should be a part of that. We have students from burma.. but even if we didnt .. seriously.

People are getting excited for the Keene party. I am. Woot.

Frisbee was fun yesterday.. but I jammed my finger and slightly sprained my ankle. BOO.

Sunday, September 30, 2007

I am very tired.

It was a good night out tonight. My date with dave went well, had a lot of fun. Saw "Good Luck Chuck" which was funny if you can get past the extreme sex montages and nudity. If you can't, don't go see it. I think I would've liked it had it been less overt. We did up the minigolf.. there was a hole called "the deep dark hole" and your ball goes in the "cup" but it goes like deep and you cant see it. You have to reach into the hole to get it out. Dave was brave and let his go in first.. but at this point we didn't know they had it rigged so that every couple 'balls' a hand smacks around in the hole to freak you out. We asked later.. but I didn't even try it. I just moved on. My fear of garbage disposals held me back. dinner was good.. paninis at this place in keene called fritz's fries. Then the movie and after we went to this bar called 21 for a beer and I got this pomegranate martini that has already given me a headache an our later. it tasted good but still. Andrew cunningham was there. It was cool.... these guys are a lot of fun.. real chill to hang with. Made for a good relaxing weekend.

Tomorrow I go to church with Kiera, do some homework then off to frisbee and finishing up of the homework.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Good times..

Ive written about this before.. but I have been hanging out with this cool group of folks from Keene.. yup that includes you Andrew "Keene" Metell... I chilled out with him/them last night for a few hours and had a really good time. Its nice finding people you can just enjoy spending time with.. no strings, expectations or requirements (aka alcohol or "the best night ever"). I am still a little sick and it was nice to chill out, walk around, snag a slice, watch a good movie and just relax. I am also grateful for tea. mmm.. that was good.

Today began a little later than desired but so far the morning has been quite relaxing. A little studying, some cleaning, stretching, munching. Real chill. This evening Dave and I are going out to play some mini-golf then off on some adventure I am unaware of but thoroughly excited for. Seems like a cool dude with his head on straight. I get a kick out of grounded creativity so we'll see how it goes.

Tomorrow morning Kiera and I are checking out a church together. She seems like she is in the same place I am as far as what we are looking for in a church so it should be fun to get to know her and try and find a place in the area. I crave fellowship and community. I know the point of SIT is to welcome diversity and thrive on the culture of differences, but I need some support. I am stressing out quickly and I need to get my mind and faith back in line a little. It has been awhile since I have just let it all go. I'm grateful His yoke is easy, and burden light, cuz I need to rest a little.

Dad is stressing me out. I'm going to just lay that out there. His solutions for my life are so frustrating, because they feel so contrary to who I am. I don't feel like he even begins to understand who I am and what I want for my life. Being here and learning about the different values frameworks has allowed me to be more patient, however it also brings to light the fact that he may never understand what is important to me because our basic values differ so strongly. I wonder how long it will take us to come to a point where it settles. He feels like I ignore everything he says, or purposefully goes the opposite direction. In some point I see that as true, not because what he says is bad inherently since it comes from him, but because our values are so different. The things he holds most dear are the things that mean the least to me. I don't need a successful lucrative job to take care of myself, be proud of myself and especially not to be happy. If thats what it takes to make him proud, than I'm sorry but that may never happen. I feel bad, but my happiness isn't going to come from making him proud, but rather what makes me respect myself. My joy comes in working hands on in the world, making change and doing what I can to improve the world one life at a time. If I do end up making a good amount of money, the majority of it will be spent allowing me to share that wealth, pay for travel, and not to gain respect or title. I would be content to get a job at barnes and noble, and work with the youth group as an intern/assistant. That work is enough for me. I hope that I can find a way to do something I love full time, but it is more important that I do what I love than to do something I hate and live "easily". My big dream, that I have stated here a few times, will probably leave me dirt poor for many many years. I will probably end up in debt for awhile. I guess part of me craves the challenge of it all. thats not the only reason, just a tiny portion.

Besides all that the only way it will be pulled off is if God is behind it. I am trying to get back to a point where I feel like I am trusting God with my education, future, family etc. I thnk I have been mad at God a little this summer. After Colorado, I struggled coming to him with Stuff.. I feel it in my attitude towards life. I don't like that.



Mom.. you sound like you are doing pretty good. I am happy.. i miss talking to you all the time. Ill try and call more often. I don't know how to pray for you any more. I do my best. I love you, I miss you, and you are on my heart. Be strong. I am so proud of you, what a great strong woman you are!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

sniffle. cough. sniffle. i hab a cohld.

sad.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

address.. i heart care packages.

Phyllis Chill
School for International Training
P.O. 676
Kipling Rd
Brattleboro, VT 05302



Send me stuff :P

Monday, September 24, 2007

First paper submitted. First Class attended. First night of intense reading? just beginning.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Studious

I am approximately 15 minutes away from finishing and submitting my very first grad school paper. WOOT. slash.. im tired already.

On another note it was a great weekend. Spent friday doing nothing but sleeping and sitting in my room. My first night off from the craziness of class/going downtown/bonfires/roommate goodness/bridging the gap/team time/frisbee/ lawn camping/ and the list continues. I have had a lot of fun these first few weeks but I have learned a lot too. We all made fun of Organizational Behavior 1 (OB1) but despite its "obvious" and "simple" ideas, it was very interesting. We worked in a team of 5 students doing different tasks and eventually putting together a presentation and a team paper. My team was pretty great and we struggled to put our newfound education to task. It was a great class in teaching us how to be "aware of the process", another phrase we sort of joked about, meanwhile truly appreciating the information. But now the class is over, I have an 8 pg paper due tomorrow.. but I should be done here in a few. All I have left is formatting, bib page, and submission. Good times.

Tomorrow begins Fall II. My first class tomorrow is Theory and Practice of Social Justice in Intercultural Language aka TPIR. We are all about the acronyms up here. that doesnt start til after lunch so Ill be able to get some of my readings done in the morning. Assuming I go to bed early enough I won't sleep til lunch.

I played Frisbee in Keene today. Man it feels good to have something solid to look forward to outside of classwork. It was a great work out and it was good to see the guys. I joke about my talents as a "bridger". I have been trying to get to know people that go to the other schools in the area. Our school is so tiny and we have all realized and heard from alums that it only gets smaller and smaller as we spend every waking moment together. So I am doing my best to help us out. hahaha.. Right Andrew? hahah... I will throw it out there that we are also trying to up our male-female ratio. Its about 70% female here at SIT, and we are feelin it already.

Anyway. peace out to all. Ill let you know how courses go this week.

Friday, September 21, 2007

JW's


Ringin in the Good Times.

So here in Vermont I am living in Janeway dorm with a crew of women who rock my face off. So far we are a nice mix of personalities and it will be a blast of a semester. We are becoming well known for our fun spirit and always willing to have a good time whether it be a smashing game of Catchphrase or a night out on the town. So Word up to My Janeway Ladies. (Front L to R: Jennifer, Allison, Laura, Namiko, Jill. Back L to R: CeCe, Phyllis Katy. We are missing Caitlin and Akiko in this picture. We love them too!!!)

J DUBS!!!! (flash of gang symbol)




This is us all out at Friendly's for Jill's Birthday. Ya Laura definitely had some wicked spooning talent ;) Everyone was staring .. we liked it. Other casualties included Caitlin's oreo soup and Allison's suicidal ice cream cone. All in all a great celebration!






Me and Garret (sp?) at Moles Eye on Ladies/Salsa night. He is 21 years and 362 days old



Some more SIT kids at Mole's Eye

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

First class is going well... pretty busy. They leave us a good amount of time to chill out with people on campus. Which is where Im off to.. but I will update more tomorrow about the actual course etc.

and once it stops raining.. ill take pictures....

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Dad Time

Had an interesting weekend with dad. It was a good time for most of the weekend, i minor bout about the same old shit, but overall a good time. Got a new digital camera, and a few other things so that is exciting.

I am going to Keene,NH today to go play some disc with some people I met downtown/on campus. Should be fun, hopefully I won't be abducted or anything.

Thursday, September 06, 2007























































Yes Brattleboro is exit 1-3 in Vermont.. haha..
Just the beginning of gorgeous views to come.


OH YES. It says Moose Crossing.
You should be smiling now.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

So here I am in Beautiful Vermont. This campus is rediculous.. I don't have any pics yet, but Ill be getting a camera this weekend so the snapping will begin. It is hard to sit around and not just gasp at the nature surrounding. Besides that this campus is amazing in its diversity of students. We are all global citizens and travellers so it is super easy to get to know people. I am hoping to get to know Brattleboro a little more before classes start up but we got to see a little last night.

I took my spanish placement test today, hopefully Ill do french at some point this week though I dont plan on taking that as my language. Because I will probably fulfill my language requirement with Spanish, I am planning on taking Mandarin during the language courses. They aren't a load on top of other courses, it is free, and they are supposed to be great profs/courses to learn language. So it should be fun.

I am excited for Dad to come out to the campus this weekend and see it. He's going to be blown away.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Mixed Emotions

So tomorrow is the big day. Here's my plan.

6:30am: Wake up, shower, pack up remnants of my crap in jessie's room.
8:00am: Leave for VT via: 95N-287E-95N-91N... pretty simple.. plus no dealing with NYC.
1-3pm: Arrive in Brattleboro. Hopefully sooner than later... preferably with a pitstop at this mall on the way to see if they have a better winter clothes selection up in that area (Holyoke, MA).
5pm: settled in dorm, dinner and off to hang with already made new friends. There is some sort of a social that night after our dorm meeting.. but we'll see. Maybe some peeps will hit the town. Then again it will be Labor Day.. so it may be a ghost town. I bet walmart will be open across the river!! haha. Or maybe they will have a WAWA!!!!

For now, I am drying freshly dyed hair, watching heroes, and relaxing in an empty house.

Emotions rolling through me:

Nerves, anxiousness, excitement, disappointment, fear, hope, "feelings", frustration, gratefulness, sadness, impatience, unrest, uncomfort.

Thoughts:

Ive done this before, no biggie
Oh shit this is the big one.
I wish, if only, oh well, what now, whatever.
God be with me.
I love family.
God is good.
I wish I knew the next step.
Am I ready?.. of course!.. well.. maybe
I want a hug, a kiss, a pat on the back, and an I love you.

These are the days when my desire for a serious relationship really hit me. God I wish I had a partner in life. Thats all I want. Someone to walk with me through the hard stuff, say you'll be fine, and also say I know you're scared, I can see it in you. I know you well enough to see it. Shit I wish I had someone near who could see how petrified and nervous I am. How did I do this last time? How did I go to undergrad so far away, with no fears whatsoever? Was I running? Part of me thinks four years seemed so long of a time that I didn't consider the end in sight. For me four years in one place meant having a home. I am serious about wishing I had someone.. I feel like if Steve was around he would be a comfort.. he's heard me whine and freak all summer long. But no he has to live a bejillion miles away.. sometimes I think long distance friends are useless. Almost as useless as long distance boyfriends. Almost. But if I didnt have long distance friends.. I would never have any friends. Cuz the people I am closest to always tend to live a few states away when I need them.

SHIT. Im scared. Im pumped as well. But Im nervous I am going to hate it, or suck, or hate the people, or get intimidated and hide in my little shell or something. SHIT.