Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Halloween Eve

Happy Halloween everyone. Tonight has been crazy. My dad and his gf finally bought a house so thats exciting! Next spring I have a feeling I will be busily helping my dad and his gf move. I'm somewhat disappointed. I had a Trick or Canning thing at my church and not a single youth showed up. Im bummed. I know they are busy and have things to do but it would be nice if they would come to an event. Maybe it was just a bad night for them. I guess I just have to realize that my success does not rest on how many people show up etc. Sometimes I feel worthless...but so many people have said that I am worthy. I am worth something and I know that I am worthy to God but sometimes it is so hard to live with that mentality. During my time at seminary, so many people said it was so awesome to watch me grow into this woman of faith that knows what she wants etc. They saw me grow and mature and believe in myself but some days that is so much easier said than done.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Here I Stand

Happy Reformation Sunday! Here I stand...I can do no other! These words are so important to the Lutheran reformation. Martin Luther was standing firm on his beliefs etc. Its funny growing up I dont remember much about celebrating Reformation Sunday but now it is so cool. I love thinking about how all my friends and I are linked together celebrating our faith on this day. Seems fitting to me that a classmate got ordained this afternooon. I love singing a Mighty Fortress is Our God. It puts a smile on my face. I was reminded today about how important it is for us to share the history of our denominations etc. One of my youth during Sunday School said, Arent you going to give us candy? Arent we going to talk about Halloween? And I began to realize how much they dont realize that that day is also the day the reformation took place. We just celebrate it on the Sunday before. But enough about that just had to say Happy Reformation to all those who celebrated today! And in other news, I am becoming more brave about cooking meals etc. I used to do a lot of microwave meals, etc but have decided to take the time to make meals. Tonight Im attempting some flank steak and corn on the cob...nothing too hard. Anyone got any good recipes that are easy, etc? I would love to try new things! Well guess thats it for now. Here I stand.....I can do no other!

Friday, October 27, 2006

Frightful Friday Five

1. Do you enjoy a good fright? No not really. I scare easily just ask my friends!!!

2. Scariest movie you've ever seen? I have seen plenty of scary movies. One of the scariest to me was probably The Ring movies but also signs was pretty scary too. One time when some friends and I were watching signs, the phone rang for real at the same time it rang in the movie. I jumped pretty high. It scared the living daylights out of me!

3. Bobbing for apples: choose one and discuss:
a) Nothing scary about that! Good wholesome fun.
b) Are you *kidding* me?!? The germs, the germs!
I used to love to bob for apples when I was younger. Not sure how I feel about it know since there is lots of germs but part of me thinks there are probably worse things todays youth could be doing.

4. Real-life phobia: Not sure that I really have one! I just dont one to lose people I love!

5. Favorite "ghost story": When I worked at camp, there was a story we used to tell the other staff. Now that I think about it, It really was a scary story.

And some bonus questions since I didnt do the Halloween Friday Five last year.

Fave Candy? Candy Corn and Pumpkin Candys, and of course Snickers bars

Worst Costume? Probably the time I was a sandwich and tied to pillows to myself with brown felt and stuff on the inside for the meat etc. Good idea at the time but didnt turn out to well...LOL! My fave was probably the time I went as static cling! I wore all black and stapled random pieces of clothing to myself...a sock, etc

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Am I Getting Through?

Well I just finished another confirmation class. My group of students is great and I love them but sometimes I wonder if Im getting through to them. I really like the confirmation program we are using because its interactive and allows the students some time to move around and not just sit for the entire class. I often use music in my class. Today was one of those days. I used the Jars of Clay song No One Loves Me like You. I felt it fit with todays lesson. One of my students who I often wonder if Im getting through to most of the time came up to me after class and asked for a copy of the song. I told this student that I would definetely make a copy. It puts a smile on my face because no one loves us more than God. It truly made my day to see a glimpse that I really might be getting through to these students. I sure do love my job...and I love it even more when I experience instances like the one from earlier. So I leave you with the fact that No One loves you more than God! (If you want to check out this song, it can be found on the Jars of Clay If I Left the Zoo CD)!

Monday, October 23, 2006

A Bloggy Makeover

Well I decided it was time to give my blog a new blog. I hope you like it. I sure do. I am sad that my Huskers lost by 2 points on Saturday but boy was it a good game. Fun to watch! I cant believe Halloween is almost here. Means Christmas will be here before we know it...crazy huh. I like Halloween. Some of my fave memories are when my seminary friends and I went to a haunted forest, it was so much fun and the poor guys couldnt hear when we were done because us girls were screaming so loud. Another time some friends had a costume party and Ill never forget one of our good guy friends coming with a huge fro. It was crazy! I really need to get some furniture for my apt. My living room sure looks bare and I am getting sick of sitting on the floor to watch tv. I have a chair but its not that comfortable. I wish there was an IKEA near here! Well just wanted to let everyone know that I gave my blog a makeover.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Finally Played Friday Five!

Below you will find five words. Tell us the first thing you think of on reading each one. Your response might be simply another word, or it might be a sentence, a poem or a story.

whirlwind-my life sometimes! Seminary!

foundation-of course Im going to say the church's one foundation :)

lightning-lightning bug, lightning bolt, lightning strike, grease lightnin'

den-Daniel in the lion's den!

prey-those being hunted, killed, etc

(Yes, they're all from Job 38.)

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

What The Hey!

Now those that know me know that I love snow. However imagine my surprise this morning when I woke up to a winter wonderland. Now like I stated earlier, I love snow but Oct 17 seems a little early to me. Im sure it wont stick around long but just the idea that i look out the window and see snow makes me think what the hey! COuldnt I just enjoy fall a little longer? So I hope that everyone is staying warm on this Oct day. And I just have to laugh that one of the many wonderful kids I got to know at seminary was singing about snow today in Iowa even though it wasnt snowing. Puts a smile on my face! I sure miss those kids but then again, I miss tons of people from that chapter in my life. Wish I could see them more often and wish I lived closer to them. And on that note, Im going to head back to work. Its going to be a slow day today since I dont have to teach confirmation tomorrow. And now Im going to go find something nice and warm to keep me warm. Hope you are able to do the same and once again what the hey...theres snow on the ground today. What the hey I think I woke up to a winter wonderland today!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Must Be In The Air!

Hi all! Seems like weight loss etc are always in the air. People try to lower blood pressure, etc. Well my friends, tonight I decided to take the leap myself with some help. I am not obese but am overweight for my body height and size. I would love to lose some pounds so I can be healthier etc. I joined the Biggest Loser Club. Its $20 a month but whats great is they plan out your meals and give you options, theres a shopping list, workout ideas, etc. I love the show and saw the ad for the Biggest Loser CLub. I love what I saw on the website so decided that it was probably worth the money. I guess well just have to see what happens and see if I can stay committed to this. Wish me luck!

Friday, October 13, 2006

Whats Your Comfort Friday Five

1. Comfort beverage: Totally Hot Chocolate, Hot Apple Cider or Chai Tea!

2. Comfort chair: Dont have much furniture yet still trying to furnish my new apt but usually it a couch or recliner

3. Comfort read: Danielle Steele Jewels. Ive read that book a zillion times

4. Comfort television/DVD/music: Anything that will make me laugh...or RENT!

5. Comfort companion(s): My mom, dad, sister....really any one of my family or my friends

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Its Beginning To Look A Lot Like Christmas!

Here I am sitting in my home office, typing away on the computer, bundled up in my hooded sweatshirt and thinking its about time to head to bed. However I just had to share the news. It snowed here today. Thats right there was white stuff on the ground. I went in to teach my confirmation class and when we came out, the snow was coming down and blowing through the air. It was crazy! I took some pictures on my camera phone but couldnt figure out how to email them to myself. Now most of my friends know how excited I get to see snow. When I was attending seminary, I used to get elated whenever the first snow would fall and people would think I was crazy. But growing up in the Dakotas, there is just something about having snow on the ground most of the winter. It was fun to see the snow and to see the kids joyfully playing in it. Now I am a summer gal, however I like all the seasons. One of the reasons I like winter is because I love curling up with a good book and a nice hot cup of hot chocolate or apple cider. Makes me feel all warm and tingly inside or something. Well I think Im going to head to bed. Im feeling a little stuffed up these days but seems to go with the territory of the changing of the seasons. I feel fine just wish my nose wasnt so stuffy. But enough about that, hope you all are staying warm tonight.

Sunday, October 08, 2006

Priceless!


There are so many things in life that are priceless to me. I was reading another blog today and the writer was challenging his readers to say what they are thankful for so I decided to take him up on his challenge. I am thankful for so many things and they are absolutely priceless to me. Im thankful for my family. They mean the world to me. We've been through some rough times as a family but we have always been there for each other. I love that. I am thankful for my job. The youth and individuals I work with are blessings to me. They all have shown me what it truly means to live as a baptized child of God. Im thankful that I have a home and food etc when so many out there do now. I pray that God brings them warmth, strength, food etc. Im thankful also for the many friendships Ive made throughout my life. They mean the world to me just like my family. They have been there for me during some extremely difficult times and I often wonder where I would be without their love, support, courage, etc. Im thankful for these priceless gifts in my life.

And now onto other news, the weather around me is definetely beginning to feel like fall. The leaves are dying and are scattered on the ground. The air is cool. Soon it will be colder than heck here in ND but I must admit I love snow. I guess when you've grown up with it around, you just get used to it. I love that every Christmas I can remember has been a White Christmas. That just puts a smile on my face. Hard to believe that before we know it Advent will be here. I love Advent and Christmas. They remind me of the awesome gift God gave us in God's one and only Son Jesus Christ. And as I reflect on that gift, I cant help but see the reminders God gives us of new life in the changing of seasons etc. My wish is that this week we may take a little time to recognize those wonderful reminders in God's creation! Another priceless gift!

Friday, October 06, 2006

Its Election Time Friday Five!

1) How old were you when you voted for the first time? Well I voted for some stuff in high school but my first real election was when I was 18. I turned 18 in 1996 so there was a presidential election.

2) What was the contest at the top of the ballot? I actually cannot remember. I suppose Bill Clinton and Im not sure who else.

3) Can you walk to your polling place? Absolutely its only a couple of blocks

4) Have you ever run for public office? No

5) Have you run for office in a club or school or on a board? Yeppers. I held many offices when I was involved with FHA (Future Homemakers of America). I was Secretary, VP, and even President. Other than that, I dont think Ive held any other offices.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Shattering the Stigma of Mental Illness

Today was a sad day...another school shooting. It breaks me heart. I want to know that every child is safe when you send them off to school in the morning. I want to know that my children will be safe when I have children and send them to school in the future. However it also breaks my heart that people assume that the shooters often have a mental illness. I understand that people are trying to find answers but statistics show that very few percentage of mentally ill patients become violent. There is such a stigma that is associated with this illness and I have to admit that I know the stigma firsthand. Shortly after my little sister was born (25 years ago), our mom had a nervous breakdown and is diagnosed as manic bipolar. She has lived with a mental illness most of my life. I remember growing up mom was in the hospital a lot. I grew up fast because dad was farming and I had to grow up for my little sister. When we got older, we started to ask questions and luckily had doctors who helped or at least tried to help us understand this illness more fully. However it was something we didnt like to talk about, we were afraid of how people would react because of the stigma associated with the illness. The summer after my senior year of high school I went to work at a Bible camp and mom once again got sick. My sister called me to tell me and while I was crying on the phone, some co-counselors walked by and asked what was wrong. It was the first time in my life when I wasnt afraid to share my story. It was good for me to finally get it out in the open. That night was only the beginning. When I got to seminary, I finally felt comfortable sharing our story. I felt like it was an important part of who I was and needed to share it. And in finally telling our story, I began to shatter the stigma that came along with the illness. (It was also during seminary that I got more involved with NAMI (National Alliance for the Mentally Ill. You can check them out at www.nami.org.)

In seminary, I even wrote a paper on the loss and grief associated with the illness. I remember one particular quote jumped out at me. It said something along the lines of, "There are 100 board and care facilities in the shadow of our steeple and we dont even realize it."To me this quote emphasizes the harsh reality of how many people struggle with this illness day in and day out. But it also proves to me, how many people are afraid to share their stories because of the stigma associated by the illness. My sister and I now are legal guardians for our mom. It wasnt an easy decision but it is a decison Im glad we made. Mental illness is a scary thing and I know that yes sometimes it can be attributed to events like todays school shooting but I think its important for us to look at medical history, etc before jumping to conclusions. Its just one little thing we can do to help demolish the stigma associated with the illness. So as we celebrate Mental Illness Awareness week, help me and other families shatter the stigma associated with Mental Illness. Together I believe we truly can make a difference!!