Wednesday, December 28, 2005


I was catching up on a friend's blog and stumbled upon his newest post that mentioned an interesting article about churches as businesses, Jesus, CEO. Is this what we are becoming? I don't understand where we get the idea that this is what church is. Maybe I'm wrong. Maybe I have old-fashioned ideas about church. Maybe Christians are supposed to be focused on reaching everyone else and put worshiping God as a low priority. Maybe Christians are supposed to get burnt out and not understand their source. Maybe Christians are supposed to think they have the power and ability to "save" people. Maybe Christians aren't supposed to grow and become more like Christ.

If this is what Christianity is about, what church is; then I'm out.

Thursday, December 22, 2005

another song rings true

"I'll Be Home For Christmas" was resounding through my head as I drove the familiar four and a half hours to my house. The trip was pretty smooth. A wopping three hours of sleep the night before kept me pouring cappuccino and Mountain Dew into my tired body. I hit snow a little outside KC and it was beautiful. It stayed small until I pulled into the driveway, then the huge flakes fell. We got two inches of snow during the day and four more that night. I of course was sleeping most of the time. Snow is wonderful when you can be inside under a couple of blankets and watching delightful old movies.

So now I'm home. I've slept an immense amount, had doctor and dentist appointments, and shopping quite a bit. I've never really enjoyed shopping; but there is something wonderful about wandering around the stores, especially around the holidays. The new styles are fun to experience and people are marvelous. There are wild little kids running around, often getting hollared at; and a plethora of people spending an exorbitant amount of money that they really don't have on stuff they really don't need. Personally, I enjoy saying "Merry Christmas!" whether its politically correct or not.

Today is another relaxed day. I'll probably knit some more, something I've done in large amounts lately. I may run to some cute little stores too and try to finish off my Christmas shopping. I love the holidays! I love breaks!

Sunday, November 20, 2005


I feel rebellious.

I grew up with a great love for the physical church. Sundays, Wednesdays, extra activities - I was always there. I always considered it a blessing that somehow I never despised church, that my parents didn't have to drag me out of bed to go every Sunday at 8am. I was one of the church-going, naive-and-loving-it, sold out Christians. And homeschooled too. Church was where I felt alive, loved, needed for ministry.

I'm not very fond of church anymore.

My heart is breaking for the churches of America. I just spent a good 20 minutes fascinatedly reading a church marketing website. I enjoy this website. I've loved some of the thoughts and ideas they've observed or created. Tonight, I came away sad. I was buying it. I was swallowing all of the church jargon, the "just be the church you are" slogans. Some places are being encouraged to use the "Dove" real beauty campaign for ways to represent the real people that are able to connect in the community. There isn't anything wrong with being real people and connecting with the community; but I'm confused about "church marketing."

Perhaps I'm sentimental and I like the sometimes old-fashioned feel of going to church. I used to love the idea of the new contemporary songs, youth group activities, and expensive church banners that build the "identity" of the church. Now, I can't stand in a service and sing a song that on many levels insults my intelligence and the depth of my relationship with Christ. I'm frustrated with evangelistic messages that are desensitizing me to the reality of the gospel. When did church become an evangelistic building? Where am I supposed to go as a Christian to be challenged and convicted beyond a daily talk with God? I've decided I definitely don't agree with modernizing the church or keeping up with the times. For once I don't want something that is constantly changing and trying to stay relevant. I question the integrity of something that tries to keep convincing me of its relevance.

Look nice. Be well-designed. I encourage and hope for that. But "keep the faith" for lack of a less-trite phrase. Open the Bible and speak from "its diaphragm."

[end of soapbox thoughts]

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

it all came back to me

I received an e-mail today from Avant Ministries - just their normal update; but upon browsing it, I discovered an article that surprised me. I almost forgot I wrote that. It was funny, rereading my thoughts. All these memories came flooding in. Smells, laughs, food, conversations, museums, streets, even movies that I filled time with. A part of me misses it. A part of me can't believe I was even there. Time goes by quickly. I wish I could say I've done something spectacular in the time since then, but have I?

Friday, November 04, 2005

fall and projects [not fallen projects]

Northwest Arkansas is absolutely beautiful this time of year. I love it. The trees boast brilliant colors, the air smells fresh and change-filled, and all the holidays are sneaking up. I picked up the November issue of Real Simple last night, my subscription doesn't start til January, and found it packed with suggestions on keeping the holidays stress-free. My head was overwhelmed with memories as I read about women's different methods of "doing the holidays." My own traditions/ or what I want to be traditions are starting to form in my head. It's a lovely, and somewhat scary thought to think of having my own way to celebrate.

Last weekend, Mark and I carved pumpkins. This was my first time and it was delightful. From scooping out the pumpkin guts to finally lighting a candle inside, it was a marvelous time. They have been sitting outside my townhouse for almost a week now and somehow their now-decaying form is a little comforting to me. Things change; I like that. We took pictures of them of course; but the memory of doing them will be impressed on me forever. My first time carving pumpkins.

Tonight I'm skipping our annual Toilet Paper first basketball game and going to a bonfire. I'm a little shocked at my decision as I've had a record of making it to almost all the home games, nevermind the first game. But somehow, this year I would much rather sit around a bonfire and cook smore's with new friends rather than be smooshed in a loud croud waiting to throw a roll of toilet paper at the first JBU basket. Hopefully I won't regret it; but right now I'm looking forward to relaxing. Isn't it funny how even values change.

I started this post thinking I would write something logical and profound about the season and the projects that start to pile up because of it; but instead, I find comfort in the happenings of fall that I get to be a part of. I'd much rather think of those on the beginning of a Friday night than on the looming design problems. Yes, things change, and I'm glad.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


My August 11 post was about "living the question." My head is stuffed with questions. My heart is overwhelmed. A good overwhelmed I guess but I've suddenly been thrown into my quiet, pondering state - a state that has been misunderstood by many people in the past. Thoughts are flowing about church, internships, design, ministry, friendships and learning to grow up. The Toys R Us theme song keeps popping into my head: "I don't want to grow up…" The truth is though, I do. I'm just nervous. There are trivial decisions that I need to make that as I attempt to make them, they aren't so trivial anymore. Slight clarification: I'm not struggling with the big "what's God's will" question. Just thinking and trying to make wise choices within my realm of available pursuits. A wise woman once disclosed an idea to me that God's will isn't some narrow path I have to discover and stick to amidst whatever hits. Instead His will is nearly impossible for me to escape from. I'm in it, for good. I don't have the full implications of those thoughts in hand yet; but I appreciate the relief of pressure that view brings. I'm free in His grace-filled will to seek Him in all that I do. Another wise woman has always encouraged me to decipher the good, better, and best sections of a decision and determine which I want to be in. So, here I am, seeking the best. Rereading those thoughts I feel a bit preachy. But they are true, and what I was thinking, so no soap box attached.

I'm ready for Thanksgiving. No good reason, but I'm ready for it. The leaves have begun their change of color. I picked up 2 yesterday on my way to a workshop and they are sitting on my desk slowly wilting and becoming a kaleidoscope of color as I hurried along the process by picking them. How strange it is that to die they must become a more brilliant color than before. There could be a metaphor for Christian life there, but I don't feel like analyzing it. The weather is being temperamental and I hope to some morning convince it as I walk to class to stay at about 50-60 for a longer period of time than a couple hours or while I'm asleep. I love my fall clothes and I'm ready to wear them again instead of just looking forward to it. It's silly the things I become attached to and excited about. A girl mentioned tonight that apparently we will have a rough winter because some scientists have seen the squirrels collecting a larger portion of nuts. I wonder if these squirrels really have inside information or maybe they are just feeling extra gluttonous this year. Who watches squirrels anyway?

I've entered the rambling state. These are the times that I feel a blog could be a dangerous thing, but it is lovely to think with my fingers for a while and allow my mind an outlet. Perhaps later I shall post about Art History. I've been thinking some delightful thoughts in that class and they might just be worthy of a post all to themselves. Just maybe.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

thought kinks

It's the middle of October. I'm sitting in my room, feeling the light breeze of fall through the open window, sipping a CF Mountain Dew and listening to the new Jamie Cullum cd. I have quite a lot of homework to do, but my mind is reflective. There have been some small kinks in life, but overall it has been good. This week was mid-terms. I go back and forth between being really ready to graduate and move on and just enjoying college life. I know this is the only time in life where all my friends, besides Nicole and Erin, will be within 10 minutes of me and I'll see them all pratically every day. I'm enjoying my design classes, but I don't feel that they are going very well. I'm feeling less and less like a good designer and this really bothers me as I really want to be a designer. But, I don't want to be a mediocre designer. I want to be good. Not for the money and not for any popularity. I love designing. I love type. I love playing with macs. I desire to be able to design pleasing, aesthetically delightful things that most people will enjoy looking at but never know why. I've heard many times that I don't have to settle in one profession, and that I probably won't; but what if I want to. I'm open to options, but this is where I click. This is what gets my pulse going. I want to design.

Friday, September 16, 2005


There's something about September that just makes me happy. I love the weather of September. Today it is lovely. A cool, brisk breeze which requests wonderfully warmer fall clothing. I love my fall wardrobe. The leaves start to change in September, usually. September is when most elementary schools start for the year and all the school supplies are blissfully on sale. The summer is finally at a close and the real feeling of school has kicked in. This last one might not be the happiest, but it does feel good to be in a schedule, thinking of fall holidays and fall smells. I do enjoy schedules. One of my housemates walked in while I was eating a delightful bowl of soup and grilled cheese sandwhich and she exclaimed that the weather was lovely. I smiled and replied that I do so love September. She leaned against the door and breathed "September" and said, "It does have a romantic sound to it."

I feel sentimental in September. It has always been my favorite month. My birthday falls at the end of it, which brings to mind my childhood memories of birthday anticipations, parties, and celebration with my grandparents. Those are lovely memories. September is filled with thoughts of warm soup, playing in the leaves, school supplies gallore, apple cider, and many other silly sentimental ponderings.

I feel like watching "You've Got Mail" today. With 2 more classes to go though, I'll have to wait. Perhaps I'll make a cup of tea, listen to the soundtrack and prepare for my next class. September. It makes me breathe deeper.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

sometimes I just don't feel good.

I woke up at 6 this morning blowing my nose repeatedly. At 6:30 I decided to take action. Medicine certainly is a blessing. When my alarm actually went off at 8, my body refused to move for the medicine had taken over. Allergies. I don't understand them, I don't want them, and it makes me sad to suffer through some pretty seasons. I wish I could smile when I see someone mowing their lawn, or watch the flowers in bloom and the dew on the grass. No, I cannot smile at it for my body grimaces in the knowledge that my nose will only run more. Some people find allergy ridden people cute. Imagine that, being cute because your nose is slightly red and you sniffle every so often. I'm glad it is amusing to some.

Senior. This word is mysterious to me. Not the Spanish term for Mr. but the word that means I've been through way too many years of education and I'm supposed to be one of the most knowledgeable people on campus with the least amount of time or desire to spend with large amounts of unknown people. The last is definitely true. I find freshmen cute and immature, but having to spend large quantities of time with anyone, except those I've been bonding with for a while, just exhausts me. I feel a lot of responsibility on my shoulders. The knowledge of future plans needing to be made continues to sink in and threatens to suffocate me. I would much rather fly by the seat of my pants except for the gnawing feeling in my stomach that says it would be much more relaxed if I would make a few plans.

Life is good. I have great friends, somewhat healthy living habits and for the first time in my college career, I've actually learned how to get my homework done before midnight the day before. Amazing.

I really want a nap.

Thursday, August 11, 2005

live the question

Wednesday, I shared my adventure in Spain with the staff at Avant. It was an interesting time sitting in a board room with faces all around; some new faces, some I've seen since I was 10 months old. I shared all the good parts of Spain, what I miss, what I learned, what I saw. I told of the question I've been trying to answer about what I can do as a simple graphic designer on the mission field. Afterward, I talked to the new writer/editor at Avant who wants me to write an article for the Avant newspaper. We discussed this question, and he told me something very intriguing to me. Live the question. I believe he said it is from a poem that reflects on how the answer often isn't the important part, but the question itself. Live the question.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005

5 days

The countdown continues on. Sunday I will be back at school, unpacking, preparing for orientation and chatting away with my dear friends. I cannot wait! I have so much to do but I'm very much in denial that I need to do anything. Yesterday, I bought a pair of jeans.

Sunday was a good day. My first English sermon in a while. It was strange for me to walk into a room and be greeted by people with hugs and handshakes and not the typical Spanish kiss on both cheeks. I never liked that but I guess I became accustomed to it a bit. The sermon was decent, and I enjoyed it very much simply because I could understand it all. The music time was wonderful. It felt so good to sing in my language again. The air conditioning about did me in. It is a great thing, but after not being used to it, I nearly froze sitting in church.

Our Sunday night service continues to stick in my mind. Our church sent a team to China to teach English in a school for 3 weeks. The team gave testimonies and told stories in the service. It was incredible for me to hear how God worked through each of their crazy circumstances and used them to humbly teach English to some strangers, but be able to share Christ through it all. My highschool friend Anthony went as well. He was stoked about it, which was very exciting to me as I've never seen him jump at overseas ministry before. He gave a testimony about how he realized that God is the same God whether he is worshipped in the U.S. or in hidden parts of Asia. That was a simple, yet powerful thought for me. I've been thinking a lot about how easy it is to fall back into desensitized, self-centered mode as I'm home and trying to get ready for school again. The same God I felt closer to in Spain, the one who made my lonely times not suffocating, the one who helped me finish projects and ask questions and talk, is the exact same God I know here in the U.S. It isn't possible for our culture to limit his moving ability, I've just got to tap into it here and now. That's incredible to me.

I'm going to go warm-up a blueberry bagel and see how I can change the world by packing.

Friday, August 05, 2005

it's raining in Kansas City

I'm home hoorah! I made it safely in last night at 3:30 and was able to stay up til 11, which was a huge accomplishment. I attempted a phone conversation before I went to bed though and that wasn't the best of ideas as I could barely focus on anything. I've never almost fallen asleep on the phone before. It was humorous.

On the plane from London to Chicago yesterday morning, I sat by a girl who is my age and had just completed a journalism internship in London. She was there for 2 months and she is from St. Louis, MO. Strange right? Well, it gets even more bizarre. She was in Barcelona for a couple days right before I got there. She saw all the Gaudi stuff and she got her purse stolen. It was like talking to someone almost just like me. I'm so thankful that that didn't happen to me. Her story was even more complicated. She was on the tubes the day the bombing happened, only a couple miles from that station. She was evacuated from the tubes. After our flight, we went through the Chicago airport together, customs and parted as we rushed to our gates. It was really nice to hang out with someone and we talked about Barcelona a lot.

The only other exciting thing that happened after that is that I nearly killed myself getting on the train from the international terminal to the departure terminal. I saw it getting ready to leave and leaped through the door. Everyone in that car, gasped and a couple people laughed. I made it though and had plenty of time at my gate in which I bought the magazine Real Simple and ate a McDonald's cheeseburger and fries. Quite an exciting trip.

Now, I should get myself going. It is no-tax weekend in Missouri. Wahoo! School supplies, here I come.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

up, up, and away

In 45 minutes, I'll be at the airport for the long journey home. Did I blink?

Monday, August 01, 2005

a bit of what's swirling around in me

I'm just continuing to put off the Barcelona update, so I'm thinking it probably won't come at all. Interested readers are going to have to suffice with the account of Monday unless I decide to write about it in the future. However, exciting news, my Barcelona photos are now up on my flickr site. I was looking through them last night as I put them all in their set and realized that I doubt many people will be excited about some of them as I was. It makes sense as I was taking the pictures that I would take shots of things that fascinated me, so I'm curious as to what must go through others minds while they look through my photos. I love them however and get extremely excited when I browse them.

Two nights left. Wednesday afternoon at 2:20 Spain time, I will be on my way to London. I still haven't figured out what I want to do in London during my night there. I was ecstatic about seeing the Design Museum again only to find that it will most probably be closed by the time I could get to it. So, I find myself browsing the internet for ideas of my night in that city I love so much. I'm anxious to get home. I very much dislike this waiting time. I feel like my innards are twisting every which way. Goodbyes and I are not good companions. I was thinking this afternoon how much I dislike closing a chapter of my life. I never feel that way when I'm reading a book. I'm always very excited to hit a new chapter, taking in its title and wondering what things will enfold in its parts that make it worthy of a whole new section. I should be viewing my life like that, I guess; and yet, I don't recall reading a book where a chapter ends and the character leaves behind a lot of other characters who were so important for those few pages, but will fade into the long list of people from other times. Its inevitable I guess, the people who have become very dear to my heart and shaped each day I spent in Spain are suddenly going to vanish from my days despite a few e-mails here and there, that probably won't last very long. Those who have kept with my blog for a while are probably thinking, "Gee, she's really bipolar with this pining for home sometimes and now sulking that she is leaving." I assure everyone, including myself, that I'm not. I never really pined for home - yes, there were nights were I dreaded my house and nearly panicked at the prospect of more time alone - but those were a very small ratio in the whole of my time here. And I'm not sulking about leaving, not a bit. I'm very ready to clean my house, pack my suitcase and sleep with my pillow at home in KC. People are just so hard to leave.

Almost completely unrelated topic now. I'm reading this book called "Letters to Karen" which I was drawn to simply because it is practically my name. I felt very silly about this, since that isn't how I spell my name, but saying it and allowing myself to think that this book is particularly written to me by some misguided person who just hasn't figured out my name - the book got me. It is a lovely book. It is a compilation of letters from a minister to his daughter a couple months before she got married. (Don't anyone jump on that one for I will gladly knock any notions from anyone's heads that that is a far thing from my desires right now!) But this book is full of thoughts of what marriage really is, what love really is and the not so fairy-tale life that is. I have found it very interesting as I've been searching a lot this summer in Spain for whom I'm supposed to be as a woman. I've been afraid of that in the past, but through wonderful people like my dear Dani and Tracy B. I've become courageous about it. "Let Me Be a Woman" by Elisabeth Elliot furthered my ponderings this past semester and now I'm just enjoying gathering thoughts and hints about what a mystery life really is.

With all that seemingly mushy nonsense written, I must say that I'm also reading "The Pilgrim's Regress" right now and greatly enjoying the philosophical battles I've encountered there. Somehow relating that I'm not just dreaming about being a girl makes me feel better. Perhaps I'm not as courageous as I thought.

I'm off to concoct some sort of dinner for myself. Sometimes rambling really soothes me. Tonight is a You've Got Mail night, I can feel it. Packing first, of course.

Friday, July 29, 2005


Barcelona = amazing!
My 3 days of travel were incredible. I don't have a great inclination to sit here and write all the amazing parts down at once; but, I see no better way to accomplish the task of relating such wonderful things. Perhaps a couple of short lists for each day will suffice for now.

• in the airplane I sat behind, across from and next to couples who all decided to be a little overly touchy and mushy in the duration of the flight.
• had lunch at Starbucks in Barcelona - lunch here means a bread-pastry thing with cheese and sauce with a caramel frappuccino… mmmm Starbucks goodness.
• wandered the main tourist walkway called Las Ramblas and saw things such as: (oh yes, I'm going to put a list inside a list)
> very creative street performers
> massive stock of little birds in cages chirping loudly
> tons of people
> the Columbus tower/statue with really cool lion statues at his feet
> the port
• found a fantastic store called Mango where I purchased a skirt, tank top, and lightweight/longsleeved shirt for very cheap prices
• got lost when trying to get to the train station
• sat next to 2 Canadians on the 2 hour train ride and played the country game and the movie game. (is there a country that starts with O?)
• got off at the correct stop, found my hosts, ate Spanish tortilla and sat on their terrace which leans over the beach.

ok, that's all for now. this is too long, I need to work and I don't feel like writing more now, so if you are reading this, anticipate much more exciting stories from my adventure coming soon…

Sunday, July 24, 2005

a very uninteresting post I'm afraid

Tomorrow morning, I leave for Barcelona. This thought alone should have made me very excited but for some reason, I'm quite apathetic about everything today. I started throwing some things into my backpack for the trip and then remembered some things I needed from my office, so here I am, checking people's blogs, updating my own and wondering about the next 10 days. That's right, 10 days left in Spain. It is amazing how 63 days sounded so long when I got here and now I'm looking back and wondering where they all went.

The last couple days have been decent. Had a lot of difficulties at work and became quite overwhelmed and frustrated. Things have smoothed over and I'm to the point now, where I cannot do much about any of it anyway. Friday I received a marvelous package full of new music to entertain myself with, a dvd I'm looking forward to chilling to, a ton of Welch's fruit snacks, and some mini Sharpies. It was a glorious day and I smiled a lot. It feels good to get something in the mail, especially when you are so far away from what you think of normal life.

Saturday, I spent the whole day at the beach. My neighbor took Natalie, me and Kristin to a nice beach and we all soaked in the sun and felt the gloriousness of the cool Mediterranean. I was very leary of the water since I have never had a good experience in ocean-like places, but it was quite fun and I relaxed. Hooray! finally a good experience to put into memory. Today, I'm suffering a bit. I discovered soon after leaving the beach that not only did I not put on enough sunscreen, but I also did a bad job of where I put it. I'm not in the lobster category, but there are several parts of me that are hurting. Cold showers are a blessing and Kristin's lovely idea about keeping lotion in the fridge was heavenly this morning.

So now, I sit and ponder what to take with me to Barcelona and am slowly feeling the excitement mixed with nervousness come in. Yes, it will be fun, and an adventure I look forward to being able to look back on. And crazy to think, but I'll have 6 days left when I get back to Malaga…

Off to Barcelona I go.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

a list because I have a headache

significant happenings or thoughts to post about:
• brochure is moving along quickly
• watched "Lagaan" movie with neighbors - musical about India, a cricket game and sappy romance. quite good actually
• cool breeze and loss of sarcastic tone
• working late
• Mountain Dew
• watching "The Trail of the Pink Panther" and thinking it was rather dumb
• collaging with little Natalie
• an Orbit advertisement which made me laugh
• groceries to fill my fridge
• successful market trip - purchases of fruit, skirt, earrings, and bag for Barcelona adventure
• 4 days til Barcelona trip
• prospect of a hike
• e-mails
• tragic bunny story from Erin
• 20 minute nap
• reviving of friendship with highschool friend
• upcoming girl's night at Bethany's
• this day is almost over

Monday, July 18, 2005

another Monday

I'm wearing my hair in pigtails today and it makes me feel cute. I don't know if I like feeling cute, but I guess it is better than feeling grungy or so-so. It certainly keeps me cooler. My day hasn't been half bad despite its horrid start - horrid simply because it is Monday - and the heat is a little discouraging. It has succeeded in reaching almost 110 degrees for 3 days in a row. There is a breeze, a sticky hot breeze that makes one very sarcastic and say such things as, "oh, what a lovely breeze!" My arms are sticking to the edge of the desk as I type. Such an odd feeling!

Last night, I made eggs in toast and watched 2 Veggie Tale movies with Natalie. We discovered a little lizard crawling along my wall and I dubbed him Nelson. I'm very fond of him already and was disappointed this morning when I searched for him to no avail. He is my hero as his appetite is drawn to spiders and mosquitoes, 2 things that are rampant at my casita.

My thoughts keep wandering today to things such as counting days, reminiscing of air conditioned bedrooms and McDonald's vanilla milkshakes, planning the many ways I'm going to hug all the people I am missing terribly, which songs I want to dance to with Amy, and the kinds of things I want to stay up for hours discussing with Dani. I opened my bottom dresser drawer last night and spotted a long lost friend, my cell phone. I had been growing tired of being attached to it, but now, I miss the idea of it actually ringing and familiar voices being on the other end. In one week, I will be in Barcelona. In 2 weeks, I will be packing and beginning goodbyes to my coworkers. Time flies and at this point I can't decide if I want to blow at it and make it go faster or just relax in its wake. I just used two very strange descriptions that somewhat clash together. Perhaps that is a sign to get back to work.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Hello, my name is Caryn and I'm a caffeine addict.

I've taken to drinking caffeine again. I have a good start of excuses: I've been keeping such odd hours here and almost everyone at MMC drinks a mug of coffee for prayer time. Of course, I could pour a cup of decaf if I thought about it. Also, I don't have to drink the cans of Mountain Dew that a lovely friend here found for me at a store. I really don't have to drink so much iced coffee with my neighbors either. I'm weak. I admit it. I knew it was a fact this morning when I woke up an hour later than normal and felt like my head was going to explode because my normal cup of coffee wasn't already down my throat. I resisted this morning, but broke quickly after church and had a huge glass of iced coffee. My head is still throbbing, many hours later and I keep thinking about the relief it would be to open my fridge and tap into a cold can of MD that is waiting for me. Here we go again…

Friday, July 15, 2005


My head was very full of thoughts and this kept me awake. I sat up late, "The Pink Panther" playing quietly next to me for the second time in 2 days, and dealt yet again with the universe. There are many perplexing ideas that I can never quite get my mind around.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

…a very satisfied sigh

My blog had been experiencing some serious difficulties recently and this, is so much better. I apologize to anyone who feels I stole their design. I don't really care anymore plus this is so much more appealing to my eyes.

I doubt many people read this anymore, but it still is such a relaxing thing to write nonsense in a pseudo-journal with the possibilities of dear friends catching a glimpse of my thoughts and partaking in the moments.

The only thing on my mind recently is Barcelona. My excitement is very hard to contain. I've researched many things on the web and started a list of things I must, would like, and possibly will see. I will put the list here, simply because I want to and if any others would like to look them up, please enjoy the wonders you may see hidden in their sites.

• Park Guell
• Gaudi Musuem
• Sagrada Familia
• Palau de la Musica Catalana (missing a few accent marks which I cannot find on my keyboard)
• Salvador Dali Museum
• Tirandot opera at the Gran Teatre del Liceu
• jazz concert at Jamboree

that is all I've accumlated for now. As usual, I'm sure the list will dwindle with time, finances, and whatever shopping I stumble upon. There is also the fact that I must find all these places.

As for my time today, I'm writing text for the latest brochure I am working on. My time is squished on this project and I'm very worried that I will not finish it before I leave. Writing, I must admit, is not one of my favorite parts, although it is quite a challenge to accept. No choice to accept takes away some of the intrigue. Nonetheless, I embark on this pen and ink adventure and hope that my thoughts flow in a semblance of interesting order.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

wow, another one

whoa, i'm doing so much better at posting in this last week. too bad summer is almost over. actually, no, I'm getting ready to come home. I can't believe I leave 3 weeks from tomorrow. this is so nuts. how do the summers go by so quickly?

this weekend was lovely. I was so lazy. My neighbors and I laid around all day Saturday and then had a BBQ of sorts on our patio. It was chicken and beef kebabs that were simply amazing. Sunday, we went to church then I swam with little Natalie and then we all went to the beach where Natalie and I rollerbladed on the boardwalk. It was much fun. I haven't rollerbladed in so long. I ridiculously didn't wear good socks for it so I now have 2 lovely large scrapes on my ankles that the mosquitoes just love. Yesterday was a typical work day. I swam with Natalie over my siesta and then last night we had a Moroccan couscous dish with some guests who came. It was so fun and the conversation just flowed beautifully. This morning however, I could not wake up. When I finally did, I had given myself 10 minutes before I had to be at work for prayer time. Tonight, I am going shopping with my neighbors. It is time to start picking up my souvenirs. I found some lovely lace things that my mom will so appreciate and I'm looking for a thing or two as well. Great fun!

Oh, brilliant news, I'm going to Barcelona before I leave. I have planned a 3 day trip and even have somewhere to stay, for free! Now, I am booking flights, mapping out the city and determining which sites must be seen. Yay for Barcelona!

if you haven't seen or heard of them yet, look to the right and in my sidebar is a link to my photos which have my pics in Spain so far. Enjoy!

I miss you all and can't wait til August!

Thursday, July 07, 2005

a need to write

My heart is breaking for the people in London. I think a part of me was thinking that this kind of thing could only happen in the States. I know that the rest of the world, especially Europe, is probably more prepared for this kind of thing than we are, but I still wish I could protect everyone from more tragedy. I realized how sheltered I am even here in Spain. I was settled into my routine, bonding with my supervisor laughing over projects, and suddenly she glanced at the BBC News and we both found the world again. Silly, here I am working to reach out to the world, and I seem to have lost track of it around me. How naive I am! I find myself crying with those who are devastated and praying all the more earnestly for the Kingdom. I cringe that those words sound so airy and flat once they are not hidden in my heart. My thoughts are full.

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

from my corner office, otherwise known as a workroom

well, my attempts at blogging have been futile. I seem to have hit an "I don't want to sit down and write" mode, which I am forcing myself to get over. Of course, my timing now is impeccable as I am at work, about 51 minutes til lunch. I'm finally ahead on most of my projects and just waiting for feedback before the next move can be made. On my hugest(I can't decided if that is a word or not) project, I am pushing deadlines and was struggling to ideate when I had the brilliant idea to blog instead. I shall now make a slight effort to catch up on posting about the life I am in the midst of. Some might be repetitive of what has been in my newsletters, but I'm too lazy to worry about that.

Spain is beautiful. Southern Spain, or Andalucia, is beautiful and hot. My spoiled American body is easily overheated in these marvelous tile buildings that lack air conditioning. I have not ventured much outside of my city of Malaga, and I probably won't because of time, companionship, and finances. I simply cannot justify taking much adventurous trips with the generous gifts of my supporters. But, if opportunity allows, I may swing over to a near city for a change of pace. My eye has been on Barcelona, which is way north, as that is supposed to be a really cool city with interesting art wrapped through it and there is a Jamie Cullum concert there next weekend; but flights are strangely expensive in this tourist-time of year as well as I really would rather not venture that far by myself. My awful Spanish would not hold out very well I'm afraid.

Work has been good and quite knowledge-stuffed for me. I have learned some crucial design tips that I think shall be so helpful in upcoming classes/projects. I love my coworkers and somewhat dread saying goodbye to each of them in just under a month. We pray together every morning(M-F) and I think that creates that tight bond between us all. My supervisor/coach and I haven't had much time to hang out, but working together has been great. There is much to glean from her wealth of design knowledge and surprisingly, I look forward to having her correct things as she is bound to find something I wouldn't have even thought of.

My little house, the Casita, is very cozy. Tends to be quite an oven in the middle of the day, but cools off nicely in the evenings. I have disposed of more spiders in that little house than in my entire life and I have recently given up on finding them all as they are sure to come out whenever they please. I was wonderfully comforted by a coworker's wife as she said she has had trouble with spiders as well, but that it is normal since it is hatching season. My overimaginative mind went wild at this thought and was very quickly picturing every corner and fold within the house just crawling with millions of eight-legged insects. Funny how I've never been scared of spiders before and could calmly dispose of them; but now I find myself shrieking after I've killed one and turn to find another. Counting my blessings though, I have only battled spiders and termites. I'm praying the cockroaches away.

Enough about bugs, more about Spain. I absolutely love wandering the streets of downtown. I think I finally have the knack of being just friendly enough with passers-by to not be rude, but still maintain the face that any little fortune-teller or begger should please leave me alone. 2 nights ago, the other single coworkers and I(the 3 of us and one of their fiances here on a visit) spent an hour or so in the huge air conditioned department store - much like London's Harrods - and then ate dinner in Antonio Banderas' restaurant. It was a delicious atmosphere and had a barnish/pub/cavern feeling that slightly reminded me of something from "The Mask of Zorro." I ate a very good pork kebab and discussed random things at our table while silently calculating the odds of Banderas actually walking in while we were there. He didn't, but it was a delightful evening nonetheless.

Possibly my other favorite part of Spain so far has been the quaint little town of Mijas. It is one of those places where all the buildings are white-washed and the streets are tight, cobblestone and decked with pots of vibrantly colored flowers. I desperately hope my pictures turned out from that outing.

My head has been full of ponderings, especially during the quiet evenings I spend in my little Casita. I've read 3 books already and am in the 4rth now. I've read these brilliant stories about brave missionaries venturing into the areas of N. Africa. All these single women who started what I am continuing fascinate me. The stories of their houses, ministries, encounters, and what-not are so enthralling and very convicting. I find myself disappointed in my character that I cannot find the courage to drop everything back home and run to the lost and hard to be in places of the world. I dread that lifestyle and I would much rather do without this one. The dear songs of Ginny Owens have been swirling around in my head all the weeks that I have been here, especially the song "If You Want Me To." It contains the lyrics: It may not be the way I would have chosen, when you lead me to a world that's not my home. But you didn't say it would be easy, you only said I'd never go alone. In those tired, dark, and lonely hours those words have been woven through my green blanket that I draw around my already too warm body. I hope all these ramblings don't come across wrong. I am learning here and enjoying myself, but my heart very much wants to be at home, back with the classes, familiarity and intimacy of my dear friends. The blessings become even more important when you have to force yourself to count them.

Well, lunch is coming close and I should wrap up my work for the 2 hour break. Now I must ideate about what I should make for my lunch. My creative ability seems to stop when it comes to cooking. I think a nap is called for as well. I will surely write again soon, at least when the procrastinating kicks in.

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

the delay of posting

My dear blog readers,

I deeply apologize for the lack of communication in these past few weeks. My time has not been too full, I have just been forgetful. I am indeed in Spain. The area is beautiful and the temperature is rising rapidly. This is short, I know, but my stomach is going to take priority. More to come, I promise!

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

9 hours

my flight leaves at 7pm. my suitcase is almost packed and I think I will succeed in only taking one. I'm excited but so aprehensive. Yesterday was an awful day of preparation and much tears as I passed the stressed zone and hit the panic zone. It will all be much easier once I get on the plane.

packing to be finished, short Wal-Mart run is a must...

have a great summer everyone and write me!

Saturday, May 28, 2005

4 days and counting

well, on Tuesday, my adventure to Spain will begin. I have done about half of my incredibly long to do list and am still chipping away at the rest of it. I spent an enormous amount of time cleaning and reorganizing my room, which although it was tough, certainly will help the packing mode since I now know where everything is. I've also spent a large chunk of yesterday shopping. It was not a fun experience as it never seems to be for me, but I did have success and will hopefully be well-dressed and not overheat in my new found tops.

This week has been jam-packed with all kinds of adventures. Sometime last week, my grandmother died, so my folks and I had to jet(as in drive 2 16 hours days from San Francisco to here) back to KC and now my folks are in New York til Sunday night for the funeral. Although it is sad and weird timing, I find it a bit of a gift from God, since I get stressed with people around asking how they can help. By the time they get back, hopefully I'll have my act together.

Thursday I was able to spend all day with my high-school closest friend and that was amazing. She is leaving for her 6 month missions internship and thus our goodbye this time was a lot harder. Thankfully, she is the kind of friend, that we never seem to feel or notice the distance when we get to talk again.

Now, I should start my day. I took a dose of NyQuil last night to try and get rid of this awful cough I've somehow earned and thus I did not awake until noon. My to do list for today will not wait much longer however, so off I go. Missing you all like crazy and praying for the many adventures that will and are occurring in the long summer(and for some through the fall as well).

Saturday, May 21, 2005

the long and winding road

so, i'm not doing so well at this posting thing, nor have I been able to keep up with other people's posts. I will be back to normal internet use hopefully in a few days. For now, I am in San Francisco - the end to a very long family trip. Monday morning, my folks and I are heading back to KC, leaving my sister, bro-in-law and niece, Maggie here to fly back to Southeast Asia on Thursday.

On this trip, I have been to Winnipeg, Canada; North Dakota; South Dakota; Idaho; Nevada; and now San Francisco (plus all the states we drove through on the journey). This has been incredibly long. I have loved the time with my sister, bro-in-law and especially little Maggie; but things have been tough with my folks. Tight space in a minivan is interesting travel especially with the added bonus of cute little Maggie who is almost 10 months and does not like long trips in a carseat. Needless to say, I'm looking forward to being back home, packing once again and heading off to Spain in a little over a week.

I thought I had a lot more to say, but I'm starting to feel bushed and ready to go to bed. I'm going to go in search of a bed and hopefully get some much needed sleep. I promise, I will once again be catching up on livejournals, xangas, and blogs in just a few days.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

packing, planning and goodbyeing

Today is my last day of finals. This has by far been the easiest finals week ever for me. No all-nighters, not even close.

All my things are once again being packed in boxes, ready to disappear for the summer. I always tend to think I'm going to throw a lot of things away, not bring as much to school next year and be much less materialistic. But, then as I go along, my sentimental ridiculousness attaches itself to particular pieces of paper and what-not and I fight the internal battle of figuring out how important certain things really are. The close proximity of home gives me too much ability to compile unnecessary items throughout the year.

I have come to the conclusion once again that I have way too many clothes.

26 days until I board the first of many airplanes and embark on a summer adventure. I could pessimistically predict many language miscommunications, design difficulties, and a bit of loneliness; but I remain positive and immensely excited. Perhaps I shall have a cubicle.

In 2 days I will be driving home, having said some difficult goodbyes. Then, at my house, I will tackle my sister and bro-in-law and deliciously hug my beautiful 8 month old niece. My bed, my room, my church…it has been a long time.

For now, I sit in my second to the last final, relishing the idea of tearing my room apart and watching a movie tonight with Erin. Life is pleasant these days.