Tuesday, December 19, 2006

You're the only one

[It's Not Over, Daughtry]

I know it seems as though I have fallen off the face of the earth, or died, or sprouted wings and flown to a new life. None of the above are true. I'm still on earth, I'm alive, and I just checked and nothing has grown onto my back.

That said... something has changed. I'm in love. I always swore I wouldn't become one of those girls who falls in love and no one else matters anymore... but I have become that at least a little bit. I had almost no free time, as it were, because of my job. But now that I have the most amazingly wonderful man in the world in my life I have even less free time... I love it though.

Because I love him.

I have long been mostly quiet about Jas, just mentioning him mostly in passing or just intentionally not really being explicit. But I know beyond a shadow of a doubt that he is the man I will marry. He is certain he will marry me. He actually already knows how and when he's going to propose. I have no idea, other than I was promised that we'll be engaged by the end of July :)

He loves me!

So... our story is simple. I love sports. I don't like Skip Bayless (sportswriter for ESPN) because he knocked on both my Seahawks AND my Ammo (Adam Morrison). One random day in July I decided to write an e-mail to Bill Simmons, ESPN's "Sports Guy", about why Bayless should be fired. But then I realized I wanted to back up the asinine things Bayless had written, so I went to find a little... ammo. I came across a blog in which someone was spouting similar feelings of dislike for ESPN's worst sportswriter. I was impressed with the writing, and then realized through a little blog perusal that this person went to Gonzaga, lived (essentially) in Seattle, and was a Christian. I clicked the link to his MySpace and sent him a message- basically, I pointed out that I loved his hatred of Skip Bayless, and that he seemed like a cool guy.

I was fresh out of my first real relationship, which had ended because the other guy just simply wasn't a nice guy. God used that relationship to teach me SO much about myself, but I simply assumed that I would never be with someone while I lived here in N0rth C@r0lin@. I figured I'd move home to Seattle and meet someone there... someday. I had zero interest in a romantic relationship. Once he wrote back, it was pretty clear between us that it would just be a random MySpace acquaintance. But then... we just replied back and forth, and eventually chatted a little on IM. After about two weeks we had one really amazing conversation on IM... I was like, "He's a cool guy" afterward, but he tells me that he walked away from that convo knowing, clear as day, that he would eventually fall in love with me.

Along the way we kept really trying to ensure that we didn't allow our relationship to be anything more than friends, even when we knew deeper feelings were growing between us. Consistently we tightened boundaries, such as how often we could talk, both praying more and more diligently that we would stay in God's boundaries for us. We didn't even talk on the phone until about 3 months after we had met. We wanted to be uber careful and not cross any boundaries. Then we realized that those lines were self-imposed, and not of God. We accepted that we were in some level of a relationship two months ago, and since then it has grown deeper and deeper. In the last month it has become crystal clear to both of us that we are meant for one another, and that we're meant to marry.

I love him. I love that he wants to close our phone conversations in prayer, and often just randomly says, "Can we pray?" in the middle of one. I love that we are in complete harmony on things like doctrine, finances, life goals, health, etc. I love that he tells me daily about his quiet time and how God is speaking to him. I love that he consistently steps up as spiritual leader, though in some ways his nature would be to step back, and that he already is both able to tell me no and doesn't allow me to manipulate him. I love that I don't want to manipulate him! That I want to trust him and respect him and allow him to lead, all the while encouraging and exhorting him to be the man God made him to be. I love that he sees me as a precious treasure, and that he wants to spoil me and take care of me and protect me and respect me and that he feels like he will simply not be complete until he has made me his wife. *sigh* I am so blessed!

I could gush for years, but it boils down to this: I will marry this man, this wonderful man named Jason. We both know it's true, and any time we have a shred of doubt God confirms all the more that this is of Him. It's the most wonderful experience of my entire life! I feel ready to burst in every direction all at once! And yet I have a deep, calm peace to the center of my soul that Jason is the man I will spend the rest of my life loving and serving. I am honored to call him my own. I am honored to be his.

In June, my beloved will come help me move across the country. Along the way he will meet one of my very closest friends, Darla, who currently resides in Iowa, and then I will meet his father and perhaps a little more of his extended family. And we'll spend three whole days driving otherwise nonstop, and I'll just get to be with him and look at him and know that we can finally actually be together. June cannot come quickly enough. Nor can April when he will come here for my Spring Break to spend time together.

We will meet face to face in 31 days. No, we haven't met face to face. We've logged probably upwards of 300 phone hours and... it's scary to think about how many words in e-mails. Seriously, probably a combined 100,000 words, maybe more (I kid thee not). I know him better than anyone else and he knows me better than anyone else. He literally knows everything about me- even things I normally wouldn't want to tell another soul. I am bare and open before him, and he before me. Finally getting to be in his arms and kiss his wonderful face will be a formality in many ways, though almost magical (if I believed in magic) after all we've otherwise developed.

The fact is, when you know, you know. One reason I believe God allowed my previous relationship is that I thought I knew, yet within me there were numerous doubts and a sense of something not being right... part of the reason I didn't end that relationship was because I didn't want to admit to my friends and family I had been wrong. With Jason, I know. It's good, it's right, it's of God, and he's the one!

Enough of my gushing; here's something he said:

Tami...I don't know what it is about today that has taken my feelings for you to a level I never dreamed it would go. A week ago I was ready to marry you. Now I literally feel incomplete for not having done so already. What we have now is amazing, don't get me wrong. I bask in the glow of all our relationship has taught me, inspired me, shaped me, and enriched me. I live as a man happier than he's ever been and dream of the future like never before. But every moment I'm awake, my dear, especially when I ruminate on those dazzling eyes gazing at me, pouring your love past my physical shell directly into my heart, I feel a longing like never before. A feeling deep in my chest that ebbs and flows, but never dies. A pain not sharp, not stinging, but dull and lingering. Deep down I know that no matter how amazing of a man He may have made me to be, it is nothing without you. Without you I'd flail around this world, fecklessly in search of a love about which I know nothing, hurting myself and others along the way. Without you I'd never reach the center of His will, and my vain attempts to try would drive me to a misery so dark I shudder at its brief appearance in my thoughts. You are inseparable from His will for me. We were meant for one another. Our relationship isn't merely approved by Him, but ordained. I could not truly be a man after His heart apart from you.

Can't you see why I love him? He's wonderful!

So... now you know! Feel free to comment at random. :)

EDIT: Ok, due to request, here's some info about my man :) He's 26 (27 in May), lives in Bothell (a northern suburb of Seattle, essentially), and currently cleans pools by day and delivers food by night for a living (and makes almost three times as much as I do in the process! It just doesn't pay to teach; at least, not in dollars.). Our current ideas for the future are to try to be completely out of debt in 2-3 years and then he'll go to grad school and continue his political degree, likely earning a doctorate in political philosophy, and then working as a poli sci (political science) professor for a college. Ummm... he grew up in western Montana, is 6'5" tall, dark, and gorgeous to boot, works hard, loves his church, loves me, and wants to make me his wife. Feel free to ask me any questions you may have, though :) I could never get tired of talking about him!

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I want to update. Only I don't know what to say. Other than I am so, so, so ridiculously happy.

Just happy. And blessed.

Praise God for His love and provision.

And praise God for Jason.

Saturday, December 02, 2006

Give me one more chance to be near you

[On Fire, Switchfoot]

I know that I never update anymore. I'd apologize, but the fact is that if I'm forcing myself to write then should I really be writing anyway? I don't think so.

That said, I'm also just usually really busy working and doing work related things. And if I'm not really busy with all that then I'm rebelling against how busy I always am by doing absolutely nothing. Not even "fun" stuff like e-mailing friends and blogging and all that. I just play Snood. Lots and lots of Snood.

This weekend I decided to reinstall XP on my desktop. You see, I had problems last winter so I reinstalled XP but I didn't wipe the hard drive clean, so I ended up with 70+ gigs of stuff on my hard drive and it kept telling me that I couldn't do anything due to low memory. I did a clean install this time, getting rid of EVERYTHING and most of my Friday and Saturday nights have been lived in dedication to getting my computer to where I want it. The nice thing is that it's WAY faster now. Yay. I'm not installing any junk- only things I actually use all the time, like Firefox 2, Google Desktop, Google Talk, and then the random stuff like Shockwave and Flash and Adobe and all that.

Today was spent at a TF@ Professional Development Day. It was a'ight. Afterward, Lizaboo and I went to RoRap, made a Wal-Mart run (I got fun art supplies to be more artsy and to be able to develop my creative side), and then went to dinner. I had some DELICIOUS pizza... as did she. We each ordered our own large pizza and we shared a set of cheesy breadsticks. I think we're awesome. And now we get to eat pizza for breakfast and lunch and maybe even dinner tomorrow. OH, and for my authentic Chinese-food loving friends (aka people who have spent time in China) I bought tomatoes because I am seriously eggs-n-tomatoes DEPRIVED. And I have really good Jasmine rice to eat them with. Oh, yum.

Anyway, post-date with Lizaboo I came home to continue the 92 hour project of fixing my comp. Grr. But I do know that I want to get Windows Vista when it becomes available. And Office 2007. The interfaces for both are SEXY, and, to be honest, Vista looks much more like a Mac interface. And I like Macs but am unwilling to give up things that don't work on Macs. So Windows wins this round.

That said, I still want an iPod so much that I feel a physical ache for one.

Ok, not really. But I do want one pretty much more than any other material item I've ever wanted in my whole life- and I prayed for a new bike for like 2 years before I finally got one for my tenth birthday. I do physically ache for one thing, but he's a man moreso than a thing. Hopefully I shall see and touch him in January when TF@ sends me to recruit in the Portl@nd, 0R area. And then he's coming here for my Spring Break in April- YAY! My roommates can't wait to meet him, because they know what a huge part of my life he has become.

Life is good :) Now, back to the *joy* of fixing my computer. Hopefully there's not too much left to do but reinstall Office... 2000. Old school, I know. That's just the way I have to roll until I have $300 floating around to upgrade to Vista and Office 2007 :)

PS I loves me some Seahawks.

PPS I also dig my Pats and my man Tom Brady

PPPS Gonzaga rocks your face off. Hard.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

Sorry, one more post-script, though in posting order it looks like a pre-script.

To the person who posted on "I miss my home"-- I'd love to respond to what you said, to you, but I have no way to get in touch with you. If you reply to this then I'll know you're going to read my response and I'll respond to what you wrote before on that post, or here, or whatever you choose. I haven't been on here much, so I'm sorry if you felt like I was ignoring you! I'd love to talk with you a little if you so desire :)

It's not over

[It's Not Over, Daughtry]

I thought I had so much to say, but now it all seems to have faded. Hmmm.

School has been good- I love my kids, though I'm hitting the downward slope in my desire to keep working so hard. For example, despite the greatest of intentions I just couldn't force myself to work over break. In my defense, though, I am sick. It's a weird illness. I'm a little stuffy, but mostly I have the headache of DEATH, and I ache all over, with a fever to boot so I'll go between feeling ready to boil and then freezing and shaking from (it feels like) within my bones. I know, boo. Oh, but my headache is so bad that it makes me really nauseated and has caused me to throw up twice, from simple things like walking down stairs.

I just have to say that driving is BOO on the east coast around the holidays. Today I wanted to just die. I can't handle stop and go traffic on the freeway. Grrr. Seriously, I-95 is death. But I am so blessed to have been with Becca- at one point I angrily asked why the [jerk who just cut me off] had to be in my lane, because I thought that both lanes became 295 (the loop around Richmond, VA so you don't have to deal with their traffic). Bec informed me of this- that they needed to be in that lane in order to get on 295- and I said, "Bec, I know that I'm going to ask illogical questions with perfectly logical answers, but the fact is that if you give me those logical answers my anger will become directed toward you." She's so great because she totally understood and didn't get offended and we were able to get along perfectly.

I'm amazed at how wonderful my relationships are with my roommates. I mean, Becca and I see each other every day, share a bathroom, and spent essentially a full day driving out of the four, not to mention I was totally crashing her family's Thanksgiving dinner and such. It was so great of them, I just feel bad that I was feeling yucky. Her family is great though. I love being with them, so Christmas will be awesome :) But the point here (my head in pain seems to be wandering away from my actual point) is that I spent a heck of a lot of time with Becca and we still love each other and totally get along. Amazing :)

Another amazing relationship is with my favorite man, my J-Baby :) Seriously, how did I find this guy? God is good to me. I didn't know guys like him existed. I could write about him for 86 years and hardly scratch the surface, but suffice it to say that he's wonderful and my life is so much better with him in it. He's everything I ever wanted and even more. I don't know what will happen with him, but I sure do hope that I'll marry the man. I'm seeking Christ, as is he, and we refuse to think we're meant to marry unless the Lord tells us that's His will. I don't need to know what tomorrow holds but I'm content to enjoy this amazingly wonderful man as much as I can today. I just wish I could see him and hug him and kiss him until my lips fall off :)

Ok. I need to go. But there's an update :) I do have to say that there's the COOLEST sign outside of Rochester, NY that lists three cities (I can't remember what cities) but their distances are listed as 10, 16, and 81 miles. So it says 10, 16, and 81 down a list to the right side of the sign... I just so happen to have been born on October 16, 1981- 10/16/81 :) Awesome, right? I know. I'm going to totally take a picture of it on the drive home after Christmas. Sweet, I know.

PS I wish I lived in Seattle. Here's to praying that I'll be there this summer.

PPS How about them Pats, huh? And my man Tom Brady? Mmm-hmm.

PPPS My Seahawks are hosting MNF (Monday Night Football) tomorrow! Yesssss!!

Friday, November 03, 2006

Angels fall without you there

[Black Balloon, Goo Goo Dolls]

Conferences were AWESOME last night. I absolutely love getting to meet my students' parents and guardians. Especially fun are the parents I connected with last year who stopped in to say hi. But it was so encouraging- I have two students who are repeating my class and I desire SO strongly to see them pass. One is barely scraping by and the other has been failing kind of miserably thus far. It was awesome because I met with the mother of each and we hammered out the plans to get the two in after school to get where they need to be.

It's so interesting the way different parents work. The one mother (who son has been failing with a 40 or so percent average) was so concerned about the situation but really seeking guidance on how I could team with her and the Larry's (not his real name) father to ensure that he succeeds in my class. I shared my concerns about the fact that A) he never talks and simply doesn't communicate with me (when I try to talk to him he just stares at the ground- he's just SO quiet!) and B) his literacy level is very low and I want to work with him to teach him how to undertand what he's doing. The lack in literacy skills is HUGE in my school, but his is probably around a third grade level. The majority of what we do is over his head, but though I try to diversify for his level and explain and adapt things he simply doesn't talk to me so I can't seem to get through to him. To get to the point, though, the mother wasn't upset about his grade at all- really just there to figure out how we can get him where he needs to be. In the end, we decided his father can pick him up after school at least once a week so he can stay and get caught up and, if he's willing, get some one-on-one help. Today when I saw him I asked Larry if he spoke to his mother, and he nodded. I asked how he felt about the plan and he said, "I'll be coming after school next week." Seriously, I think that's almost as much as he's ever spoken to me in the entire 3 quarters that I've had him now. But my heart completely leapt for joy! Yay!!

The other mother was a bit more on the frustrated end of the spectrum. You can tell she's reaching her frazzled point in dealing with a stubborn and unmotivated 15 year old son. Isaac (again, not his real name) is someone I've worked SO hard to build a relationship with. I referred him to our (awesome) freshman counselor and they set him up to be able to catch up and graduate on time if he stays focused, despite failing most all of his classes last year. For awhile he was coming in after school and pulled his grade up to the C range, but then he dropped off in the last two weeks of the quarter and squeaked by with a 70 (the lowest possible score to get a D on our scale). I was able to soothe some of her ruffles and assure her that I am willing to go as far as I possibly can out of my way to get Isaac to succeed, and she said that she knows he really likes me and loves my class and that it's the one class he's willing to do the work in to pass. I spoke with him today and he fought the desire to go to sleep (his mother said he's staying up until 1-2 watching TV every night but she simply can't get him to go to bed) and he actually got some quality work done. So the road will be long but I have faith that he'll pass my class.

My goal is that EVERY single student would pass my class- and I don't inflate grades. I don't give random points so a kid will look like they passed on paper. Every single point each student has was EARNED by them. The fact is, my kids are simply the last ones anyone cares about. Inner-city kids have it rough, but at the same time a lot of people put time, money, and effort into providing resources for those kids. My kids live in the middle of nowhere, in a rural district over an hour away from the Raleigh/Durham/Chapel Hill area and the fact is that they are overlooked. Most of them are Black, the vast majority live in poverty, and the chips are stacked against them. I can't change the outside world. I can't even change the culture they live in (which contributes heavily to the problems they face). But I can ensure that they not only get the best education possible in my class and actually learn about the history of the world they live in, but also that they have a positive role model who lives out the high standards she teaches.

One quick story, then I'll get some sleep: About a month ago we were learning about the Mandate of Heaven in China, and how the Zhou (pronounced joh) dynasty conquered the Shang dynasty because of the corruption in the government of the Shang. The Zhou believed that the corruption meant that heaven had removed it's blessing from the Shang and it was their duty to conquer the Shang and replace them with a morally sound government. I explained the concept of corruption to my students, and how it involves the misuse and abuse of power by those in authority for their own gain. I used the example of myself- how if I changed grades in exchange for money that would be me misusing my power to determine a student's future in regards to their grades and college in order to bring personal gain to myself via extra cash. Some of them were like, "Yeah, right. You know you'd take the money." This isn't because they think I would do that, per se- they're just so used to the idea that money is the end all, and you do whatever you have to do to get as much as you can.

I promised them that even if someon in my class was a millionaire, and had a check for a million dollars that I knew would clear the bank, and even if I would NEVER get caught, I would not raise that grade even a fraction of a percent. This set them OFF. THE. CHAIN. They were like, "Nah, Mz. Teakay, you cuh-ray-zeh'." They of course wanted to know why, and I explained that integrity is doing the right thing even when no one is looking, and I want to live as a woman of integrity. For one, money doesn't buy happiness, and I don't want anything that isn't rightfully acquired by me-- bribery is simply wrong and I couldn't look myself in the mirror or have any semblance of peace when I settle into my bed at night and reflect on what I've done. Plus, I personally believe that I will one day stand before my God and answer to Him for all I've done, and the choices I have made, and to accept the money would go against how His Word says I am to live.

This REALLY set them off the chain. I mean, the chain was no longer in sight. Almost the entire class, in their own way, said, "Iss a'ight, Teakay. You's just gotta ask for forgiveness after you do it, thass all."

No, I'm not making this up or exagerrating. This was coming from all students- white, black, male, female, mature, immature, those with F's, those with A's... all across the board. I had one of those moments where my heart just broke. Like I said, they've been taught that money will make their lives happy and whole and right. It's a dirty lie, but it's bought into by most everyone in their lives and it's tragic. I know that for most of my students I am their most respected and loved teacher. Some of them tell me this, many of their parents told me this last night, and I hear it from other teachers. Yet I know that I have to lock up all of my stuff and I don't dare leave anything valuable unguarded. No matter how much my students care about me, if I have something they want then a lot of them have been somehow programmed to believe that they deserve it and that it's perfectly justifiable to take it. Very rarely is a lost pocketbook or wallet in my school ever turned in. It's just understood that if you left it somewhere it's someone else's free game.

But this is why I teach- to show my kids that I chose a profession in which my paycheck hovers above the poverty line by a couple hundred dollars, even when a person of my talents and abilities could be making at least double what I make now had I chosen to pursue a field like medicine, business, or law. I can't even afford the iPod I so desire- yet I'm happy. My life is fulfilled. For one, I have my relationship with Christ. But also, I have them. I love my kids. I'm actually tearing up a little because I care so deeply about them. Some of them I wish I could just bring home and let them see that life can be joyful and complete without sex and violence and drugs and lies and cheating and treachery and the dishonest ways in which they try to get their hands on money. Some days I get tired of getting up and working my ass off every day trying to save the world one kid at at time. But then I see my kids, and I meet their parents who want so much more for them, and I remember the future that is ahead of them if I give up on working for them, and I am absolutely certain that it's worth it.

I know I've been silent on my classes and such for awhile. I've actually just felt more protective of them this year, I think, and I didn't always use the best discretion in my old blog. Mainly because where I was at this time last year was mostly focused on either complaining about my school (and sometimes my actual kids) or about just how shocked I was at the culture and such. Now that I've settled in I've kept things more to myself. But trust me, my life is still dominated by school and my kids, and I like it that way. I don't know how long I'll be here, but as long as I am then I refuse to give less than my all.

On that note, it's time to sleep. 'Night.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

List Thursday

So I know that tomorrow is Thursday, so it's unfair to call this "List Thursday". But the fact is that I'll likely not get a chance to post tomorrow, and most of you won't see this til Thursday. Plus, it's Thursday in two hours. Actually, one hour and fifty minutes. So bite me.

Here we go...

1) I just found out that next year daylight savings time will start in the second week of March and end in the first week of November.

I think that's stupid.

How will this affect computers and such? And I have an alarm clock with a chip programmed to keep track of the date and time so it automatically resets the time in the whatevereth weekend in April and the last weekend in October. Grrr.

Like I said, stupid.

2) I hate that every morning I drive to work feeling like I'm an hour late. Also, I hate that in the evenings it's DARK when I get home. I'd rather have it be dark in the morning and lighter in the evening.

3) The ONLY redeeming quality of daylight savings time is that it makes (well, now "made") October the longest month, since it has 31 days PLUS the extra hour. Now, no more. Stupid.

4) Ok, enough complaining about stupid daylight savings time.

5) Yesterday I downloaded the following albums. Note the speedily increasing levels of dorkiness as I progressed.

Braveheart soundtrack
Crash soundtrack
Help! - The Beatles
The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring
The Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers
The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the King
Titanic soundtrack

Yah. True story.

6) Ok, and this weekend I downloaded songs from the following albums...

The Lion King soundtrack
Aladdin soundtrack
The Little Mermaid soundtrack

7) Yes, I really am 25 years old.

8) Oh! It's 10:16!!!

9) Ok, I have this weird and uncanny ability to see the clock when it's 10:16. Seriously, most of the time I'll not look at the clock for anywhere from 10-45 (or more) minutes, and then I'll just randomly look at the time and it will be 10:16. I think my body is just programmed to know when it's that most awesome time of day!

10) On a more serious note... I just don't know what I want in life. Last week I was certain I wanted to move to Seattle next year. Now I wonder if I should stay here one more year. Should I go see what happens when I'm in the same place as JJ? Should I pursue this new charter school in Connecticut (aka New England, which I LOVE) that's recruiting me? (Side note: I think they're recruiting all T*F!@'ers, not just me) The problem is, I don't know what I want! Usually I just really want something and run after it.


I know I just need to pray more. The Lord has a plan for me and isn't revealing it yet for a reason.

Honestly, God has a sense of humor- "What if His People Prayed?" by Casting Crowns just came on my iTunes. Seriously, all you Christian types get that joke.

11) I really, really, REALLY want an iPod. So bad. I don't remember ever wanting something this bad that I just can't have. It's kind of a sad, sad day.

12) So I realized that my mysterious pain in my side went away, but came back precisely the same day I started PMS'ing. So I'm going to tough it out this month and see if it comes back next mont at the same time. If it does then I'll have to call the doctor. Grrr.

13) Ha- Men in Black by Will Smith just came on iTunes. I love it :)

14) I COMPLETELY cleaned my room, the basement, the bathroom I share with Becca, did three huge loads of laundry (I usually have at least two once a week and I had two weeks of laundry this time), the area where I sort of camp out upstairs, and... uh... something else I can't remember on Monday. And I put together my bookshelves, brought in my books, hung up my AWESOME quote cards from Darla, and organized and filed all of my bills (I hadn't done it since... cough... August... cough....), created a spreadsheet for my house's bills to our landlord (he pays them and then we reimburse him), created a budget for the month, and even finished writing my midterm for my classes on Monday. All in about 7 hours. I know, I'm awesome. Go me.

15) Tomorrow night is conferences when parents come in and meet me and get their child's report card and all of that jazz. I acutally love that night, I'm just not thrilled that I'll be at school until at least 7. And then there's a football game Friday night, and it's our last home game, so though teachers are free to leave at 1 pm to make up for the late night tomorrow night I get to stay at school until 10 or 10:30. Ode to joy, huh? I'm hoping that I'll actually be productive and get work done. We'll see :)

16) It's 10:28 and I get to go to bed! And tomorrow's The Office and Grey's Anatomy and Six Degrees! Oh, and my man Tom Brady is ROCKING it hard this year! Too bad my 'Hawks are struggling. I'm a true fan and loving 'em anyway. Plus, while I know way more about football than most girls, let's be honest- the Seahawks have the hottest uniforms BY far over everyone else in the league. Oh, and the Steelers have a record so bad I can't even remember it! And they haven't even lost their best players to injury, so they have no excuse! I mean, really, neither do we, besides losing the league MVP and our star quarterback, among numerous others-- we should still pull it out and overcome. We better at least beat Oakland, especially since A) I get to see it on Monday Night Football and B) it'll be IN Seattle and C) Oakland SUCKS. OOOOOHHHH- AND Gonzaga tips off in 9 days! Guh-LORIOUS!!

A'ight, I should sleep.

'Night, kids.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

I miss my home

[San Angelo, Third Day]

So I went home this weekend. It was awesome. Kind of weird- it felt like some parallel universe. Home was amazing yet not the same. I'm not the same person, nor are any of my friends the same people. Even Whitty has this fancy schmancy new Th0mas Hammer coffee bar and plasma screen TV's and such. My church was really different, too. Not bad different. Just different. Things change. And that's ok, it's just interesting how much the last 17 months have altered the course of my life.

That said, my friends were wonderful. I loved meeting with people one-on-one, and my amazingly great friend Heather even remembered that I had been 25 for less than a week and brought me a birthday present!! That was a huge blessing :) Plus I had rock star friends who get very little down time at their house open it up to a group of us on Sunday. My beloved Seahawks were slaughtered, but other than that it was really enjoyable. Yummy cookies, great friends, football, pizza, being back with people I love and who love me, etc. It was wonderful. Not to mention how great it was to simply be back on Pacific time.

Monday was GREAT. I absolutely loved recruiting. Seriously. I'm in contact with T*F@ people about pursuing a job with them after this year, preferably back in the Se@ttle area. Recruiting was absolutely incredible. I'm too tired to type it all out, but the take-aways were that A) I was right that there are amazing Whitw0rthi@ns who need to join T*F@, and B) I'm good at it! It was so natural because of pure passion in my heart for the movement of which I am a part. My body was absolutely exhausted but I was on such a high from the adrenaline of speaking with people that I was buzzing with energy afterward.

I have a quadrillion things to do and no time to do them, but I really wanted to get this up for people. I know some have been curious and asking about it :) I love you all!

Thursday, October 19, 2006

So hard to fathom

[Simply Nothing, Shawn McDonald]

So... it's list Thursday. Here we go:

1) Yay for The Office! I've been totally bonding, primarily with my roomie Liz but also with Becca and a wee bit Elise, over the second season. In fact, I am going to hide the last disc so I can be there when the drama between Jim and Pam goes down in the last episode!

2) Yay for birthdays! I am ridiculously old (I've hit the quarter of a century mark... that's 25 for you slow people!) but as my favorite dude says, I'm on the right side of 25. So... I'm gonna choose to believe him. I was so blessed by people who know me so well getting me perfect gifts- Bec gave me supplies for my very own disguise box, Elise got me the GREATEST Godiva chocolate, Liz told me to take her up on a dinner date some time for some quality one-on-one time with each other, Darla sent me a great bookmark, encouraging me to read more, and that afore-mentioned favorite dude sent me the world's greatest cookies. Not. Even. Kidding.

To be honest... it was a huge blessing because I was given zero presents last year. I mean, the roomies got Bec and I (her bday is three days before mine) a cheesecake. It was kind of heartbreaking, to be honest... but what a difference a year makes. Last year I was homesick, hardened toward God, and feeling completely alone. This year I am SO much closer to Liz, Bec, and Elise which makes home a happy place for me to be (I was the one pushing them away last year), I'm closer to Christ than perhaps at any point in my life in a more real and deep way, I have a peace about where I am and where I'll end up, and I'm simply blessed by my relationships as opposed to hoping they'll fill a void that is God's alone. So... yay! Yay, yay, YAY!

3) Praise Jesus for going HOME!! I am going to recruit for T^F@ this weekend; I'm flying home Saturday and coming back Tuesday. I am SO excited. It hasn't seemed real. Tonight I was making plans with Brendo and I couldn't believe that less than 48 hours existed between that moment and the one where I'd see him for the first time in 17 1/2 months.


Just to say that I haven't been home- even in the Pacific time zone- in SEVENTEEN AND A HALF MONTHS seems kind of overwhelming. Yikes.

4) While I'm pumped to see friends (maybe family... not sure at this point) I'm super pumped to recruit. I love what Te@ch f0r @mer!c@ is doing in my school, and in my students' lives, and I just really want to see more quality people joining the movement-- and Whitty (my fond name for my alma mater) is chock full of quality people.

This means YOU Clintonius Maximus! I know you read this. ;)

5) Tomorrow's homecoming. Hectic day of hangin' with the other T^F@'ers from my high school replete with watching the parade and doing a little tailgating in the parking lot pre-game with some students. Then I'll be a keepin' the stats for the actual game. Sweet, right? I know :)

6) That said I have a LOT to do tomorrow so I need to get to bed. I got a done completed tonight but there's still a lot to do tomorrow- it's not easy to be gone for two full days. And... uh, I'll get home at 11 or so and I need to pack. I have to leave my house at like 4:30 am Saturday. I'm just going to try and not think about it! What is sleep, anyway?


Hasta, quesos. And if you're in W@sh!ngt0n, I cannot wait to see you. Seriously. Can't. Hardly. Wait.


Monday, October 16, 2006

Happy October 16th!!!!

Monday, October 09, 2006

And I'll stop this pretending that I can somehow deserve what I already have

[I Need You to Love Me, BarlowGirl]

I am so blessed. Amazing things are happening in my life. There's one relationship that is changing my life for the better and I'll never be the same now that this person has become a part of me. There's another that's less enjoyable; I can't really share details, but God is really working on my heart concerning a difficult relationship. He convicted me today in my quiet time about the fact that every Christian- regardless of his/her spiritual gifts, personality, socio-economic status, station in life, nationality, location, occupation, etc- is called to one common ministry. That ministry is the ministry of reconciliation; every single blood-bought believer of Christ is called to bring restoration of relationship between humans and God. I certainly don't often enough say the words (nor think the thoughts) that keep this reconciliation at the forefront of my daily doings. I want to be more intentional about this, however, and pray that I will.

Also, I am seeing the deep need to remember that I am a steward of all things in my life. Not a single thing in my life is meant for my own personal gain. Sure, I try to remember that I'm a steward of the money and material possessions that God has blessed me with, but I forget that I am also to be a steward of EVERYTHING. I do not own my personality- I am to be a steward of it. I am a steward of my talents, the Word of God, the relationships Christ has blessed me with... ALL things. A steward is responsible to carefully make sure that they use what they have been entrusted with to bring profit and glory to the Master. I can't honestly say I intentionally live this way in my daily life. Again, however, I pray that I will :)

Finally, the Bible study I am currently doing is called LORD, Give Me a Heart for You by Kay Arthur. I love what she wrote in this paragraph that I read this morning:

I think it would be good if every morning, before we ever put our feet on the floor or rise from our bed, we would make the conscious decision that this day, no matter what the discipline, the cost, we are going to live for Christ. It would be the first commitment of the day, spoken aloud- a confession with our mouths from our hearts.

Don't you love that? I do. I'm going to try to start doing it. I might have to shut my alarm off first. Maybe not. But I plan to start doing this. Feel free to ask me periodically if I have.

In other news, I went to the doctor today. My bloodwork showed no abnormalities, though the lab forgot to do the one test that would help show if it's a certain ovarian issue. However, my doctor was alarmed to hear that the muscle relaxers didn't work (so it's almost certainly not a muscle spasm issue), and that when I had HORRIBLE cramps this weekend the 2,000 mg of Tylenol that finally curbed the cramps had zero effect on my mystery back pain. I have to go get a CT scan on Thursday morning (at 7, in Hender$0n, which means I have to leave at like 5:45 AND find a teacher to cover my first period class- boo!). And this is now my daily regimen of pills:

1,000 mg Tylenol
Wait four hours
600 mg Motrin
Wait four hours
2 Aleve tablets
Start back at Tylenol

All day, every day. Ode to joy, huh? I know, I need to stop complaining. It's just frustrating. But, as Paul talked about having a thorn in his flesh, in his side, I have a literal pain in my right side, so I need to let God use it to bring me closer to Him. I do trust Him- be this something small and easily fixed or something more serious. I am in His hands, and my life is His to do with as He pleases. I want to just say, "I'm sure I'll be fine", due to fear of sounding overdramatic if this isn't an actual serious medical issue. But I refuse to play this up OR downplay it. What it comes down to is that I am Christ's and I trust Him.

I was reminded of something this week- it is in Christ that I live and move and have my being. He died for all, so that they [I] who live might no longer live for themselves [myself], but for Him who died and rose again on their [my] behalf. The love of Christ controls me. To live is Christ and to die is gain!

I pray I would live each day on this earth becoming more and more prepared for the Day when I stand before Christ and give an account for all I have done. I pray I would keep the eternal things in mind as I walk through this earthly existence.

PS Happy birthday Brendo!!

PPS Happy second anniversary Darla and Daryn!!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

LIst Thursday

For all of you List Thursday lovers, Bekah-the-rock-star-gliznast reminded me that today is, indeed, list Thursday. So buck up, little broncos! Here we go:

  • My beloved Seahawks were absolutely creamed by the Bears on Sunday. I'm still reeling from the effects.

  • My beloved Patriots asbolutely creamed the Bengals on Sunday. I'm still reeling from the effects.

  • The Lord has been working on me about my whole belief that the roads belong solely to me and that everyone is simply able to use them at my generosity. Now, I do pay enough in taxes each month to somehow feel justification here, but nonetheless now that He's brought it to my attention I am unable to rest in my old ways. So I pray on the way to work in the mornings, and that has helped A TON. Plus I pray much more consistently which really is needed.

  • Speaking of prayer, my brother was smashed in the face with a baseball bat and mugged in downtown Spokangalangeles. He's all right, though the docs say his nose will never be the same nor look quite right. I feel bad for the kid- he's a few months out of prison and really trying to live right and these are hard times. So if you pray, pray for mi hermano.

  • I can't say "hermano" and not think of the hilarity which ensues from that word on season 1 of Arrested Development. :)

  • Speaking of TV shows, I LOVE LOST! They're so stinking creative and smart on that show. Though I need to understand how the others went from clean little book clubs and muffins houses to the rags they had on at the end of the year. Wait. I think I just figured that out. Nevermind.

  • I wonder where Michael and Walt are. Huh. I forgot about them.

  • I really don't like Kate. Never have, never will. I don't feel sorry for her. Meh.

  • I also love The Office! And it's on tonight! And I've begun to get the roommates hooked on it and oh happy day! And Grey's Anatomy is on as well, and I have decided to give 6 degrees a try mainly because I loved the lawyer dude on Friday Night Lights. And he's really hot. (Sorry, JJ, but he so totally is.)

  • Watching Grey's ALWAYS makes me wish I lived in Seattle!! Someday, someday.


  • I had blood drawn today. It was a long hassle including multiple pokes and the needle being shoved around under my skin. She felt really bad, and I'm used to it because no one is ever able to easily get blood from me, but it still sucked. Plus I bled a lot after she pulled the needle out so I can't take the bandage off but the tape really itches on the back of my hand (she had to go from inner arm to back of hand because I have stubborn veins).

  • My students are doing a project on Greece this week. Note to self: One day you WILL visit the Greek islands. Any takers?

  • I'm really hungry.

  • I made delicious lasagna AND delicious chicken noodle soup the other day (both homemade, because I rock).

  • No, my chicken noodle soup does NOT have a soda on the side. (If you get that, then seriously, tell me. Because I bet 98% of you have ZERO idea what I'm talking about.)

  • I will be a quarter of a century old in 11 days. Ho. Lee. Kuh. Rap.

  • I hope my insurance will do gown. I keep meaning to call about that.

  • I get to go home for the first time in 17 months in 16 days!! That'll be sweet. I'm pumped.

  • I'm a little apprehensive that people won't be very excited to see me. I don't really know why. I think I'm just scared of being disappointed? Home not living up to the hype? I hope I'm wrong... and I probably am.

  • I decided to stop going to my church. It was pretty spiritually unhealthy. I'd love for your prayers about where to proceed from here- and I really need to remember to call around about some churches in RoRap (it's a mid-sized town- maybe 15-20 thou- about a half hour away).

  • We have a football game tomorrow against the school one of my roomies teaches at. I hope we win. By a lot. And... I love football, but we only have five games left and I'm kind of glad because I can't wait to actually have Friday nights again!

  • I received a letter and some photos from my child in Uganda that I sponsor. His name is Isaac, he loves God's Word, he's ten, and I really love him so much that getting a letter from him made me cry. Maybe sometime I'll try to figure out how to use my scanner (I know, techie-T@mi hasn't figured out to use her scanner though she's had the printer for a year and a half... bite me.) and put up a pic of him :)

  • That's all for now. Happy list Thursday!!

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

So I ordered The Office season 2. I received this earlier:

This shipment was sent to:

[My name and address were here but I'm obviously not posting THAT to the world]

via USPS (estimated delivery date: 16-October-2006).

So it seems that I'll get a TRUE birthday present! I mean, I had to buy it for myself, but still... yeah, baby!

I'll pretend my ship's not sinking

[King of Wishful Thinking, Go West]

So I was supposed to go get blood drawn for a bunch of tests today. I decided that getting blood taken would make me kind of weak and tired so I might as well just take the whole day off of school. So I did. But the doctor said no eating or drinking after 8pm the night before. I mostly obeyed this (I made DELICIOUS homemade Chicken Noodle Soup- why I capitalized that I don't know- and I had to eat a noodle here and there when putting it away), so as a result I woke up with a killer headache. It was from dehydration- I can always tell because the same vein in my left temple area will KILL.

When I arrived at the doctor's office and told them that I had a dehydration headache they told me to go home, eat, drink lots of water, and come back tomorrow. It would seem that my doctor failed to mention that the one thing I should do is drink lots of water so that my blood will easily flow. Which I sort of was confused about, since I know that water hydrates the veins and allows blood to flow more easily, which would seemingly bode well for getting it drawn.

So... tomorrow I'm going to make sure my principal is cool with me going during my planning period to get this taken care of. My back issue is still happening even with the muscle relaxers so I really don't think it's a muscular issue. Oh, medical issues. Hopefully it will all be resolved. I'm tired of typing so that's all I'm gonna say for now.

Other than LOST comes back tonight! T-1 hour 50 minutes and counting! Yay!!

Saturday, September 30, 2006

4 Things... Randomosity

I don't really feel like typing a real update. So instead I'm just gonna type 4 random things each about any random subject I can think of. Maybe you'll like it. Maybe you won't. But read it... you might learn something new about me or my life!

4 Things... Randomosity about:

1. I am known by what appears to be every student in my high school where I teach, though I know only about 1/2 of them (there are 950+ and this is only my second year, so give me some grace here).

2. Chaleese, a senior and in my first semester of teaching last year, claims this is because my reputation is for being a cool but good teacher.

3. I can't decide if that's true or if she's just sucking up for college recommendation letters ;)

4. My principal reprimanded me yesterday for not taking a day off to go to the doctor (I might have broken my foot, or at least fractured it, when I fell down the stairs; also, I have this weird either back pain or kidney thing going on. I'm not sure which. But I really just haven't dealt with either. I never really go to the doctor. Until my principal essentially rebukes me. And then I think about it a little more... and go, "Nah.")

My House
1. I'm pretty sure its worth is in the vicinity of $800,000+ ... and this is an economically depressed area.

2. My rent is only $280 a month.

3. That's almost $100 less than the (less than stellar) apartment I stayed in this summer. And I have my own room and share my bathroom with only one (very low-maintenance) roomie.

4. And I get a garage to myself. Yeah, life is good. Plus, we have a pool table, big screen TV, lake, beach, big back deck with furniture, huge double-decker dock with loads o' lounge chairs, really nice furniture, a big 10-person dining room table plus a five-person breakfast nook, and on and on. It's a blessing :)

1. This is perfect to do fours because I have four. So... let's start with Jenny. She has long red hair and is going to donate 10" of it to Locks of Love- how awesome is that? And she's from Pennsylvania.

2. Becca can read my mind. Seriously. Ninety percent of the time we are thinking the exact same thing about any given subject. The other ten percent we disagree with the other but still know her exact stance on ths issue. She's from New York (Rochester, to be more exact.)

3. Elise chews a gazillion pieces of gum a day. And her boyfriend is named Mac, but we all (ok, Liz and I) call him Mac-Attack. She's from New Jersey.

4. Liz's boyfriend Matt is going to circus college in Australia. I'm not even kidding. He's specializing in juggling. He's a rock star. She's very artsy and encourages my creativity to flow. And she's also from New Jersey (same basic town as Elise, actually.) And she went to the same college as Jenny (Bucknell... and don't worry, if you're from the West Coast no one else out there has heard of it either, though to speak to Jenny you'd think it's a huge deal and everyone's heard of it ;) That's just the split between East and West Coast for ya.)

1. It's an Acura. 1992 Vigor. It's a five speed (aka stick shift, because it is- and I am- awesome) with a five cylinder engine (yeah, I know that's not normal but I'm not making it up, and I know what I'm talking about.). It's luxury so it has all the ammenities- auto everything, leather, sunroof, sedan, etc.

2. I only paid $600 for it. Because Jesus loves me. And, despite having 240k+ miles it still runs really well. I love my car!

3. It has some sort of electrical problem. Things that have recently quit working (over the last couple of months) include: the inside dome light, the interim setting on the windshield wipers, the rear defrost, first the front and then rear passenger side windows, the dinging bell when you open the door and forgot to turn your lights off, the car charger (aka cigarette lighter but I only ever use it for my cell phone and will eventually when I get an iPod for the car hook-up) and... probably some other stuff I am forgetting.

4. Yeah, I know, I really need to get it checked out. I will. Eventually.

1. I really, really want to call Seattle home.

2. Some of you assume this is because of a boy... yes, he's part of it, but my main reasons range from wanting to be closer to friends and family to love of the city (seriously, I've been to 25 states and many bigger cities and Seattle still is by far the best) to being able to watch my favorite teams (college and pro) on the local stations to loving the weather (hey, I don't really like the sun. So what?).

3. But, to be fair, yes, there is still the large curiosity about what God is going to do between a certain (wonderful and amazing) male friend and I once we live in the same place.

4. My hope is that I will be able to work in recruiting for T.F.@ in the greater Seattle-metro area at local colleges and universities. They take really good care of their employees (benefits and salary are among the best in non-profit organizations nation wide) plus it would fit my passion to see low-income and often racial-minority students receive a fair and equitable education.

That's really all I've got for now. But I hope you enjoyed it :) Someday I'll post some of the awesome and random pics I've been taking... I love taking random pics :)

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

I will be the wall when you fall down

[Renaissance, Mat Kearney]

My title lyrics are from a simply amazing song. Seriously. Go buy it. Right. Now.

In other news, I am ridiculously tired. I got home just before nine last night (aerobics and then back to school to see some of my boys in their soccer game) and then at 8:30 tonight (some of my girls had a volleyball game and then Bible study). I'm SO TIRED. It's ok. I just am finishing up prepping for tomorrow's bingo review game in third period and then I need to write a quiz and figure out what first and fourth period are doing. And it's ten pm. Ode to joy.

The good news is we get out at 1 tomorrow due to the fair. So that's happy. I was going to go but honestly I think I just want to come home. I guess we'll see how I'm feeling when school gets out. I need to write a 50-100 question Unit Test tomorrow and it will take some serious thought and time, so that's on my agenda. Not to mention that Friday I'm having a party for third period because they have the highest percentage of people earning an A or B and getting 3's (85-92%) and 4's (93-100%) on all assessments (their numbers are 71% and 51%, respectively) so I promised I'd make them cookies... and Thursday night I have aerobics and won't be home until 7:30 and I have to call all parents of students with D's and F's, and that's The Office / Grey's Anatomy night. Plus tomorrow I have to call all parents of students who don't return the progress reports I handed out yesterday (they have to be signed by their parents). Oh, and I had like 7 kids doing make-up work in my room today after school, which is awesome, but it meant that I accomplished nothing on my to do list.

I'm not really upset or anything. I'm not even in a complaining mood, I guess I just needed to take a break and write it all out. But five minutes are gone now and I really want to somehow be in bed by 10:30 if at all possible so my 5 AM alarm won't be quite so painful.

Hasta, lovelies.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

PS False start count on the Giants... 2 and counting

[Update, 4:52 EDT: 3 and counting]

PPS I loves me some Deion Branch in a Seahawks uniform!

Are YOU ready for some football?

I'm sitting on the couch in my basement watching (my beloved) Seattle Seahawks. And we just got a touchdown!! Life is good.

The Bengals owninated the Stealers (intentionally spelled that way) on their own turf, the Pats are televised tonight, and I actually get to see the Hawks play on TV for the first time this year.


I love all the shots of the gorgeous city of Seattle, all the supa-dupa-crazy-loud 'Hawks fans in the loudest stadium with the BEST AND MOST LOYAL fans in the NFL! I wish I lived there. Perhaps in a year from now I will and I'll be AT the game! One can hope. I sure do.

Go Seattle! I heart you guys!

Saturday, September 23, 2006

Long Live Living if Living's like This

[Miserere, The Cat Empire]

Today was lovely. I woke up around 11... well, that was the third and last time I woke up. Then I came up, made some (delicious) cookies and Liz and I agree they're seriously some of the best cookies EVER (chocolate chip, yay!), and cleaned the house. Then she was rockin' it hard in this super sexy straight from the 60's dress, and I decided I wanted to dress in a disguise.

You see, Liz has a box of disguises. Just all sorts of random hats and gloves and capes and wigs and dresses of utter randomosity. So I wore clothes I normally never would (still too tight... I can almost wear them comfortably but not yet so the normal me wouldn't ever wear them), did my make-up far more dark than normal, and donned a black wig and it was just sexy. We decided that this person's name is Miko and she's dark and disturbed. Here are some pics of Peggy (Liz) and Miko (me):

Dressing up was fun. So then I played around with the camera. These are my favorite two of "Miko":
I love my eyelashes in the top one. In the bottom one, isn't my right eyebrow (actually on the right since it's upside down) a thousand times better than my left one? I really wish my left eyebrow was smooth and didn't stand up straight, all one direction the way my right eyebrow is :)

So... after dressing up, we were invited to dinner and swimming at Carolyn's house (she lives with 6 other people but I'm too lazy to type 'em all out). That was quite fun. Then we were headed home but Josh called and convinced us to stop by their (the boys') house so we dropped in for an hour-ish. While there we were invited to dinner tomorrow night (word is that Corey's making manicotti- YUM!) so we said we'd come but only if everyone's dressed in disguises. So that's tomorrow's plan.

Once we got home Liz and I had a crazy dance party to some Jethrow Tull and Meatloaf on vinyl. That was sexy. We were just running crazy-like around the living room and being awesome. Then we ate some cookies to completely nullify working off all those calories. But my foot hurts like crazy... I feel that I may have nearly broken it. Nuts. Now we have Annie Hall on and I was gonna be artsy-craftsy and modge podge but I'm too tired. I'm gonna head to the esleepiendo zone.

But that reminds me- here are the promised pics of my non-spilled everything from when I fell down the stairs. Enjoy, and note the full glass of water not even spilled. Amazing, huh? :)

Ok, and since I'm in picture posting mode, isn't my room SO nice now that I make my bed everyday? Go me :)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

You know all the right things to say

[Too Little, Too Late, Jojo]

Thursday... LIST DAY!!

  • I. Love. The. Office.

  • Yesterday I had to run a bunch of errands before Bible Study so I decided to set up shop and work at Subway for a little while. A girl (woman?) seemed REALLY excited to see me and hugged me and told the little boy with her (her son?) to say, "Hi, Ms. ^*." She commented on how great it was to see me, and I smiled and had no idea what to say because I had no idea who she was. Yeah.

  • The other day at school a black teacher started talking (well, shouting) about how all white people are liars and thieves. He kept saying (to a white male teacher), "YOU went over on the boat!". [This was in reference to slavery; I am passionate against racism, and I am not justifying slavery. That said, I would just like to point out that it was the Spanish, not Anglo-Saxons, that started the transatlantic slave trade; also, once the United States was involved, it was not primarily white people that captured Africans- it was rival African tribes getting rich off the capture and sale of their enemies. Again, slavery was horribly wrong. But it's just as wrong to make ignorant and sweeping statements like accusing a person today of being part of the slave trade just because they happened to have been born with white skin. Grrr.]

    Anyway... back to the situation... I was just like, "What. The. Heck. Is HAPPENING here??". What do you do in that situation? Plus, it was in the cafeteria with kids all around. And the black teacher was really loud in his yelling about it. The white teacher pointed to a fellow T^F@ who is a white male, fresh out of college, and said, "What about them?". The black teacher said, "They are different! YOU are a redneck! Rednecks are liars and thieves." Now, there was some element of kind of a little bit of humor, but mainly it was just the most awkward situation of my life. Stinking N0rth C@r0lin@.

  • The Office was HILARIOUS. And sad. And good. And totally not offering up resolution.

  • Grey's Anatomy is good so far. It makes me REALLY wish I lived in Seattle. Well, I wish I lived there because of this show and... other things. :)

  • Tonight I fell down the stairs. I'm such a freaking idiot. I refuse to turn lights on. So I had my dinner (a DELICIOUS salad made with spicy black bean burgers, romaine lettuce, black beans, salsa, onions, black olives, some cheese, and a little ranch) in a big bowl in one hand and a tall, full glass of ice water in the other. Because it was dark I thought I was on the last stair and started to take the last step and walk forward... and totally fell. Because it sure wasn't the last step. And by some miracle nothing spilled though I ended up laying on my back with some pain in my feet and calves from getting all banged up. Yet not a thing spilled. Miracle. I have a picture but my cord is at school. You'll see soon enough though.

  • I'm SO glad tomorrow's Friday. So glad. I need some sleep.

  • I really want an iPod. *sigh*

  • I'm TOTALLY going home for the first time since June 5th of LAST year in a month!

  • Plus... it's almost my birthday! Yeah, dude. Sweet :) Too bad I'll be FREAKING old. A quarter of a century. Ack.

  • And... time to write tomorrow's quiz. Happy Almost Friday!

Monday, September 18, 2006

The phone call went really, really well.


Sunday, September 17, 2006

Looking for something I've never seen

[Trust Me, The Fray]

I wait so long between updates that I never know where to start. Then again, my life consists primarily of 16 hours a day committed to school and two hours for showering/Quiet Time in the Word/cooking/eating/driving to and from school/a random e-mail/etc. Then on a good night I get 6 hours of sleep.

So... let's see. I went to a soccer scrimmage Friday since a bunch of my boys play and there was no football game (it's our bye week). Then I came home and had a grading party with the roomies. We watched Empire Records as we worked, and Jen and I grabbed some (tragically sub-par) cheesesteaks from Andy's. Yesterday was a P*D^D (Pr0fessi0nal Devel0pment D@y) in Durh@m for T*FA so we went down around 11, got a little (mostly useless for me) training in Excel, then spent three hours doing random T*F@ stuff (all group meeting, then Le@rning Te@ms where you go with everyone in your content area to swap ideas, help each other out, etc).

After the P^DD we went to hang out at a local bar/restaurant called Tyler'$ Tapr00m. I had the BEST po' boy sandwich (shrimp... yum!) and garlic fries ever. We all joked about how there'd be no making out for us since we all ordered/picked off of other's fry orders. Then there was some pool, some hanging out, some football watching (um... WHAT THE HECK HAPPENED TO NOTRE DAME???). Then we decided to go to Franklin Street in Chapel Hill (yes, the same one where UNC-Ch@pel Hill is located). That's pretty much the street with all the bars, and not really my favorite scene, but I was in a car with three other people and Liz was a rock star and drove so it wasn't a huge deal. I mostly was tired/bored so I texted friends and tried to stay awake. The wine bar we were at was actually pretty chill... it had a great atmosphere and swell ambience. I happened to not mention the HOUR we drove around trying to find a place to park. But in the end it was fine. I drove home because A) I really like night driving and B) if I didn't drive we would have stayed with friends in Durham and I really like sleeping in my own bed so I wanted to come home. We got home at 2 am, and when my alarm went off this morning I was on 5 hours of sleep and made the lack of sleep-induced stupor based decision to turn my alarm off and go back to bed. And then I woke up later, fervently hoping it was like nine, but it was noon. Oops. I guess I probably needed the sleep, but it's still annoying.

Today I'm going to work for (hopefully) a solid 5-6 hours, then the boys are coming over at 6 for dinner, and then after that a guy friend is calling for the first time. There's a lot that could be said there, but really at this point it's on a need to know basis and those who need to know what's going on already know. It's all very low key and will be for a long time, but if ever there's a major step out of "friends with feelings there but waiting on the Lord to make His will clearly known" mode I'll tell the world. But at this point that's where we are.

Happy Sunday, and I hope everyone has an AWESOME week. There was an exciting development in what might possibly happen in my future per job and moving to Washington, but at this point it's all hypotheticals and I simply don't have the time at the moment to write it all out. When I think I do have time, however, I certainly will tell you all about it.

This could very well be my only post this week, so I hope it's plenty long enough for you ;)

PS Go Seahawks! Let's get like 6 touchdowns today to make up for last week! And the same to the Pats!

Friday, September 15, 2006

And that's why I love him

"... I happen temporarily to occupy this big White House. I am a living witness that any one of your children may look to come here as my father's child has. It is in order that each of you may have through this free government which we have enjoyed, an open field and a fair chance for your industry, enterprise and intelligence ; that you may all have equal privileges in the race of life, with all its desirable human aspirations. It is for this the struggle should be maintained, that we may not lose our birthright..."
~~Abraham Lincoln, speaking to the 166th Ohio Regiment in 1864

Monday, September 11, 2006

Give a Little Bit of Your Love to Me

[Give A Little Bit, Goo Goo Dolls]

Monday is list day this week.

  • The Seahawks signed Deion Branch!! Yippee!!

  • Though I only got five hours of sleep and had to plan SUPER quickly last night and was pretty much uncertain how today would go, it was a great day. We actually needed an entire hour for logistical stuff, so that was super helpful.

  • Today was the first time someone other than my roommates asked me if I've been losing weight. And I was able to say, "Yeah, I'm pretty sure I've lost like 50 or 60 pounds." Oh, happy day :)

  • I went to aerobics and not only did I not hate my life but I ALMOST had fun. Not quite fun yet, but I at least enjoyed being there and enjoyed the routine it's allowing me to get into.

  • I bought supreme unleaded gas (my preferred choice since I drive an Acura and Japanese engines run better longer on higher octane gas) for $2.59 today! Yeah, baby.

  • My dinner was ABSOLUTELY delicious and ridiculously healthy. It included lots of salsa (instead of mayo on a black bean burger and a wrap... I couldn't decide between the two but both have so many vegetables that I didnt' really feel bad for eating both), tons of vegggies (tomatoes, leafy green lettuce, red onion, and something I'm forgetting) and pesto. Yay, pesto!! And yeah, weird as it sounds, pesto and salsa go really well together :)

  • Thus far it seems the anniversary of 9/11 has been (praise God) rather uneventful. I'm very grateful for that answer to prayer.

  • I had something else but it's gone now. Happy Monday that's nearly Tuesday which is just that much closer to Friday!

Sunday, September 10, 2006

I don't really have time to say a lot. Other than that I'm not dead and hopefully I'll update tomorrow. Eighteen hour work days sort of start to catch up with you :)

Friday, September 01, 2006

Hurricane Day

So, for only the third time since 1999 my county closed schools today.

The reason?


I actually am sort of annoyed that there was no school because it utterly messes with my plans, but it's been a decent day. Crazy weather though. A tree blew down in our yard, our $800,000 house has sprung a leak or two, and when Jenny, Liz, and I drove into town to our respective schools (they teach at two different elementary schools, I teach at the high school) I had to be super careful because of downed trees in the roads and such.

Bec and I sang some duets on karaoke. I almost fell asleep singing so I went to lay down from 4:30 to nearly 6:30. That was mostly because Amy (TF@'er at my school) called at 5:30 to tell us school was cancelled, and Elise, Liz, Jenny and I all just stayed up. I made scrambled eggs at 6 am. Liz ate Oreos at 6:56 am. It was hot.

Now I'm trying to wake up and ignore the pain in my lower back and extremities (ok, and mainly my butt) from my first bout of aerobics last night. I think I may actually go work out on the elliptical in an hour or so once the Aleve kicks in just to help me feel awake. I really do have a lot- LOT- of work to do so I want to get goin' on that tonight. I know, what a nerd on a Friday night, but such is the life of a teacher :)

For anyone that did realize that Ernesto was headed straight for me and was stressed about it, don't worry- I'm fine. I'll post some pics for y'all later of the downed tree and Jenny and I acting crazy in the hurricane (ok, tropical storm, but whatever). But we've been blessed- the tree fell in the opposite direction of our house and didn't hit anything- not even the landscaping. And it was a big tree. And then our power only blipped for a quick second, but that's good too. It was a fun day :) I doubt anyone really noticed or was worried, but if you were, there's no need!

A'ight- lata killas.

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Prayer Update

Today was a bit tough- I was tempted to just feel really sorry for myself. My department head, to make a long story short, basically told me that I was teaching the different classes and my kids don't matter because it's not a tested course. He wasn't exactly nice about it. I was totally not complaining AT all. He was just... not nice.

But I decided to literally just sit in my principal's office until she got out of a meeting. To make a super long story short, I told her my spiel about not wanting to see my kids be hurt that way and that I would teach all six classes if that were possible, but that I really don't want my kids to be grossly mistreated because of a teacher's [insert many a not nice adverb] choice to leave with the school year underway.

The most amazing thing happened- she was just like, "Ms. ___, I have really thought about that. The other day I was talking with Charles Harper* and he just couldn't quit talking about how much he loves your class and how amazing you are. And I thought to myself, after [my department head] spoke to me about changing you, how crushed Charles would be if you were taken away from him. And then I realized you have three classes full of students that would experience that. So I really feel what you're saying."

So... she couldn't PROMISE me anything, but at this point I can rest assured that I will keep my current classes. The superintendent actually would like to not replace that position and what will LIKELY happen is that I'll teach a U$ Hi$tory class during my planning period. Which would be a bit not awesome, but it would actually be a blessing in two ways. For one, I'd put together solid LP's (sorry- Lesson Plans) now, and then when I'm teaching two preps (preps= number of classes I have to prepare for) I'll have done the vast majority of the work this semester and then coaching won't be as stressful .

Side note: I teach on a block schedule so I have three 90 minute classes a day with a 90 minute (in a perfect world... usually much less, if at all) planning period. Then, at semester, I switch and get all new classes.

The other awesome thing is that I'd be paid extra money. Last I heard it was in the realm of $1,000 a month. So hopefully like $700 after taxes. That would SO help me get out of debt AND save for a move home to Se@ttle. So... really, so long as I do keep my kids it's a win-win situation. Either I don't do it and still get a planning period, or I do teach but am prepared for Spring semester and make extra money and all that happy goodness.

And... if things do go down this way... I keep my kids AND the already well-qualified teachers in my department teach the kids that are being left behind. Seriously... how great is that?

Praise God for answering prayer. Please continue to pray and I'll try to update as much as possible.

And seriously- I love you guys. I'm sorry that I'm so busy and out of touch. But things in my classroom are amazing this year and I'm just happier with life in general. I was miserable last year and this year I'm happy with who I am in Christ and my walk with Him, I love people around me, I have amazing people in my life (new and old), I love my job and am just a completely better teacher, and my clothes are falling off and my roommates keep telling me how good I look :) Probably because I never wear pants. But it's all good.


Must. Sleep. Now. Tomorrow's Thursday, which is officially bullet pointed list day so hopefully I'll be able to do that.

*I never use real names. Ever.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Prayer Request

I'm entirely too tired to go into the whole story, but before I have a quiet time and fall (literally) exhausted into bed, I want to request prayer from my friends and loved ones that read this blog.

Today I got word that a teacher in my department is almost certainly leaving for a neighboring school district (she was going down to speak with the principal this afternoon to essentially give her 30 days notice) and she just so happens to teach tested subjects. My course is not a tested (state tested, that is) subject, and I'm actually certified to teach secondary social studies and my strength is US History (the courses the teacher would leave are two sections of US History and one of Civics and Economics). Many teachers in this area of the country are lateral entry, which means they have a college degree but no teaching certification- sometimes they don't even have college courses in their particular subject area... it's a very depressed region and hard-pressed for teachers.

So... if a teacher is not found who is certified to teach these subjects being left behind, which in my school district would be literally as miraculous as Jesus raising the dead, then there's an extremely high likelihood that my school would switch me mid-semester to the tested courses and give my students to a long-term sub (aka a warm body to put in a classroom; my current students would learn NOTHING).

Here's the thing- I will do whatever I am told to do, and do my best to choose joy and trust God's will. If I am switched I will work extra hard (beyond the current 19 hours a day if I have to) to make sure that these children get the education they deserve. However, it will break my heart. I am already so connected to my current students. I have rapport and already amazing things are happening in my classroom that I haven't had a chance to write about. I know the other students being left behind deserve a good teacher, and I do feel frustrated with their situation, but my kids right now are already my kids. I have connected with them. Many trust me. Many are already opening up to me and trusting me, and I am setting the tone for their first semester of high school. If they are ripped from me I will literally be crushed.

Seriously, if there were a way to teach all six classes I would. I have nothing against the other students. But it's simply unjust- almost unethical- to take away their favorite teacher (for probably 90% of them this is already true; I know because they've told me) just because their course isn't tested by the state.

So please, pray for me. Pray for the situation. Pray for the students, the administrators making decisions, the teacher who's leaving (primarily because her reason for leaving is mostly because of the money the neighboring school district offers, and she's leaving without consideration for the current students in OUR school... I have to bite my tongue on my opinion about this.) Much of this is totally up in the air and I am trusting God to work things to His will. But I am asking for a miracle- Jesus DID raise the dead and God tells us that we do not have because we do not ask. I am asking that not only will I be able to keep my classes this semester but that also a quality teacher would be provided for the other students if/when their current teacher leaves. I rarely ask so openly for prayers, but please pray- I covet your intercession for myself and this situation.

"Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. For you died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God..."

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Waiting for you

[Big Machine, Goo Goo Dolls]

Ok, frustrating as all get out- apparently the internet ate my last post. Grr.

This won't be as in depth as the first one. Instead you get a list.

1) I'm totally pumped for the new year. I love my new students! They are my heart and soul. Yesterday (first day of school) I had just explained my passion for education and such, and what they can expect in the class. I asked how they were feeling about everything, and one boy with bright eyes and a huge smile burst out, "I'm EXCITED!". Yeah, I love him already :)

2) Utter tragedy struck as I slept last night. My beloved ZAG4life wristband (blue, in support of the work Gonz@ga does to raise money for children with cancer, ala the LIVESTRONG tradition) broke. I want to cry a little bit. I don't even know if they sell them anymore, and even if they do Spokangeles is, oh, three thousand miles away. Sad, sad, tragic day. It's ok if you feel sorry for me.

3) The greatest moment of my life occurred today when I was wasting some time on the guide on our satellite on the telly and, as usual, felt the need to see what was goin' down on ESPN. I looked up a few channels and saw something utterly beautiful and different- a channel with the letters "NFL" below the number. So I started perusing the schedule and found a ton of preseason games. I knew my 'Hawks were playing tonight at 11, so I decided to check out what was offered and, lo and behold, my boys were on! Yay! So that's what I'm watching. They started super strong, but haven't looked so hot in the last 20 minutes or so. Boo.

That's it. I need to get back to work. As always, feel free to leave some love! It always means a lot to me.

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Lookin', tryin' to start something real nice

[Ride Wit' Me, Nelly]

Tomorrow starts round two of my life as a teacher. Year one went pretty well, but I believe that round shall be utterly more awesome.

I met a bunch of my kids at Freshman Orientation on Tuesday and I'm already in love :) They're going to be great, and I am super excited to invest them and teach them. It's going to be awesome.

That's really all I have time to say- I'm still sick and my bed is screaming my name :) Plus, I have to be up (well, am choosing to be up) by 5:45 at the LATEST so I can be to school as close to 6:30 as possible. Gross, I know, but I want to be there early. Then right after school I have to grab some chow with the football team and head off to $0uthern Durh@m for a football game... I probably won't be home until between midnight and one. So it will likely be an 18+ hour day- welcome back to school and 90 hour workweeks, I say! At least I get a $3,000 raise this year :)

I hope everyone is well, and feel more than free to leave some love!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Shadows searchin' in the night

[Don't Stop Believin', Journey]

I'm watching myself a bit of Seahawks preseason action. My body ACHES. Too many heavy boxes and stairs and lifting and shoving and hauling and BLECH!!

Seriously, though, I was so exhausted that my whole body was shaking. What is that?? Blech. The good news is that all of my stuff has been brought into my room; I just need to unpack. I'm only about 10% unpacked. My back is KILLING me, so I'm taking a little break to watch some Seahawks preseason action against the Colts. That's nice :)

My throat is raw, and puh-retty sore; my roomie Jenny has a nasty cold and we shared a bed Thursday night so I have a feeling I'm getting sick. NOT GOOD TIMING. I have a TON to do for class, with teacher workdays and various meetings every day, and I have a community dinner at 4:30 and then Freshman Orientation from 6-8 on Tuesday; then Wednesday night a big group of us are going to the Counting Crows / Goo Goo Dolls concert in R@le!gh. I have Thursday night off (thus far) but school starts Friday so it's gonna be a CRAZY week.

Anyway, the 'Hawks look WAY better than they did last week. I love being able to watch my boys! And I love my house, I went swimming in my backyard/lake this afternoon, and thus far the Red Sox are winning (after getting SPANKED by the Yanks in three straight games), the Seahawks are winning at this point (and the starters for both sides are playing so it still actually means something despite being preseason), I get to sleep in my bed in my room tonight, and in general life is just good. The aching back, pain of death in the feet, headache, and sore throat will fade but life is good :)

Yes, yes indeed. Life is good.

Thank you Lord!

Saturday, August 19, 2006

I don't really have time to post this, but I just wanted to give a little blog love to the faithful :) I'm so exhausted that I want to fall out of the chair, but it's 9:40 at night and despite just having returned home after leaving before 8 this morning I need to pack so I can move tomorrow. This is not to mention being fairly busy all this week, plus a 17 hour day yesterday on only an hour or two of sleep (and it's not my fault- I slept normal hours but I just laid there and couldn't sleep. I think it's because I was sharing a bed with someone- don't worry! It was my roomie, Jenny. We crashed at the boys' house and Riley wasn't back in town yet so Bec slept on the floor and let Jen and I share the bed. Anyway, it was a great chance to see people I've been missin' all summer and just hang out with people I care about.)

Anyway... I went from boredom of gargantuan proportions to mega busy. It's a'ight though- I LOVE my friends! And great things are happening, I just don't have time to write about them.

I have such an amazingly blessed life.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

I think that Snakes on a Plane could possibly be the greatest movie of all time.

Hands down.

And you think I'm kidding.

I'm not.

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

What a feeling- dancin' on the ceiling!

[Dancing on the Ceiling, Lionel Richie]

My classroom is 95% ready. I have to do a few small things, like organize my desk drawers, but it feels good. I can really focus on planning. Mostly I need to alter dates and such on letters/surveys/supply lists/etc., and then make a gazillion copies.

In other news, I had a LOVELY time with my beloved roomie Becca last night. 'Twas rather nice. Oh- and the quesadilla burger at Applebee's will change your life. Bec and I split one and I think between us we must have said the equivalent of, "Yum! This is SO good", about fifty-two times. Give or take forty-five.

I want to say enlightened stuff but I got up before nine today and my brain is mush. Being awake in the mornings (well, after sleeping... if I never went to bed, then it's cool) ruins my life. I can't really come up with anything interesting. Sorry.

PS I wish I could dance on the ceiling. That song inspires me.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Time has made me strong

[Too Little, Too Late , JoJo]

Things I am grateful for:

  • The chance to go into my classroom. I felt refreshed, inspired, and excited being in there. Enough to even come home and continue working on planning! Plus, one of my fave people in the office gave me my key early so I can come and go as I please. The janitor actually had to kick me out :) That's in part because I slept too late and got there later than I meant to *grins sheepishly*. Tomorrow I WILL get up earlier because I am forcing myself.

  • Friends coming back to town! Yay! Bec and I are going to have a date this week (one for tomorrow has already been proposed by me via an e-mail a few minutes ago, so I'll see if I hear from her tomorrow) and then there's already a roomie dinner in the works for Thursday night. Happy day! Pretty much everyone will be at a T_F@ event Saturday because it's mandatory with a required make-up date (lest you choose to forego your nearly $5k education award... which, honestly, who would?) so I'll get to see tons of friends. Oh, happy day :)

  • I never thought I'd say this, but I'm actually grateful for cramps. They always happen on the first day of my cycle (I know, guys are suicidal right now, but bear with me) and while they often cause me to literally feel like I might pass out when waves of pain hit, the good news is that I feel like the hormone dam that blocks all of my happiness when I'm on PMS opens its gates and my normal joyful personality can break forth. Seriously- 11 days of an aching chest (and I don't mean my heart or ribs) and the constant battle against my own chemical make-up to not be constantly irritable gets REALLY old. Cramps signify the end of that battle! And, let's be honest- I'm SUPER grateful for Advil ;) Though I actually prefer Tylenol... mainly because it starts with a T. I'm narcissistic, what can I say?

  • Motivation! In part it's my own willpower. In part it's the Lord's motivation. In part it's the prayers of friends. But I have accomplished more in the last two days than I think the entire rest of the month of August. And much of July. So here's to not being a lazy bum!

  • Floss! I used to never do it. And, at the risk of alienating readers, I also used to only brush in the morning. I know that's kind of gross. Hey- at least I'm honest! And repenting ;) Lately (the last month or so) I have been brushing morning and night, and my commitment is to floss at least 3-4 times a week, though I actually might start doing it every day because I'm starting to like it. My gums bleed and ache less, and I just love the feeling of clean teeth! I'm even going to figure out a time to go to the dentist in the next few months. I'm kind of scared, but it's needed. Plus, I pay like thirty bucks a month for dental insurance, dang it!

  • Family and MySpace. I've totally been able to connect with cousins that otherwise I would never talk to. One of my fave cousins is going to college (W@zzu) on Wednesday, and I can barely believe it. I can almost remember when he was born. And I love his younger sister, and really feel like I have an awesome opportunity to be kind of like a big sis to her even if it's just through keeping in touch via MySpace.

  • In that vein, Google Talk! I heart it much. And seriously- Gmail changed my life so if you want an invite just ask. I hang my head in shame that I ever was a faithful Hotmail user with an unused Gmail account!

  • An amazing song- it's called Too Little, Too Late by JoJo and I feel it is such a perfect song for all that I went through in my break-up earlier this summer. I still stand in awe of all God did and has done (and will do). I'm finally in a healthy place, not haunted like I was. That doesn't mean I won't ever have to deal with anything God may choose to bring up, but I feel a peace about all He has done. I know that I am wiser, and truly want Him to interrupt my life with someone and am not concerned about when that happens. I'm happy with my life, right now, and grateful for the lessons learned. I also know that even if I first meet someone randomly online (aka NOT a dating site! That's just not for me.) I need to know them in person, over a period of time. No rushing or jumping in. I only want God's best and He has been so gracious to bring me back to Him. I am His alone until He decides He wants a man in my life.

    Back to the actual song-- the reason I love this song so much is it just sums up the break-up and how it all happened. It also is about a female that says, "Enough is enough, I'm doing the right thing, and I'm strong." Her boy [not man] was a player and flirted with other girls; mine was deeply insecure and manipulative and a ticking time bomb particularly to my spiritual, mental, and emotional health. Other than that small difference, I can just really identify with the lyrics. Here's the money graf:
    I was young
    And in love
    I gave you everything
    But it wasn't enough
    And now you wanna communicate (You know it's just too little too late)
    Go find someone else
    In letting you go
    I'm loving myself
    You got a problem
    But don't come asking me for help
    'Cause you know...
    It's just too little, too late
    I can love with all of my heart, baby
    I know I have so much to give
    I was naive in love and didn't actually love him, though I thought I did at the time. I did give the guy my best (even he admitted I was an amazing girlfriend, and I knew I was! I put him first and really did my best to love him well in Christ), yet he was constantly self-focused and only saw me for the wife he thought I'd be, the mother he thought I'd be to his children, etc. He was always trying to prove he was better than me though and was threatened by my qualities of being friendly, funny, smart, a talented singer, etc. He also was simply very unhealthy spiritually and his doctrine was way off. In fact, it was false doctrine and when I was no longer open to it he accused me of not even being saved! He said I was a counterfeit, then a fake, and then all but accused me of being a Jezebel- a seductress trying to take his focus off of God. HELLO! I'm a virgin and consistently sought God in the relationship- I'm the one who broke up with him as a result of God revealing how unhealthy the boy was for me! Needless to say, I never believed or took personally any of the cruel things he said because I knew he was wrong.

    Then he did what he made a habit of- tearing me down and then pleading for forgiveness. The last time he did this he was begging me to not remember him that way- as a cruel person who said horrible things to me. At one point he even admitted his problem of being so cruel to me out of selfishness on his part when I hadn't done anything to instigate it. I simply didn't reply to the e-mail; it's not my job to help him fix himself. It truly was too little, too late. He could say the perfect words but no longer was I going to let him try to manipulate me. I deserve far better. I love myself and will not settle for any less than God's best for me. That said, when God prompts me to, I pray for him to truly put his identity in Christ, and I ask God to not allow him to have any sort of ability to affect another girl's heart until he has done so.

    As for me-- I do have a LOT to offer to the man God wants me to spend my life with and I refused to waste even on more ounce of it on someone that wasn't God's best.

    I'm still grateful for a song that hits the heart of the matter for me :)
  • God's Word! I saved the best for last here: I've been thinking a lot lately about how Jesus Christ was sinless, yet He was tempted in every way. His ability to resist temptation- to choose God over sin- was a result of dependence on the Holy Spirit in Him. The Holy Spirit is equally as much God as Christ Himself and God the Father. He [the Holy Spirit is a He, not an it; see Romans 8:26] enabled Jesus Christ to choose not to sin, and that exact same power was sealed in me upon my salvation! (Ephesians 1:13-14). I have the option to choose God if I'm willing to rely on the Holy Spirit in me.

    Last night God really wowed me with a verse I've never even noticed before though- I was reading in James (I'll link the entire fourth chapter) and this portion just enraptured me, considering my recent ponderings on the Holy Spirit in my very being:
    What do you think the Scriptures mean when they say that the Holy Spirit, whom God has placed within us, jealously longs for us to be faithful? He gives us more and more strength to stand against such evil desires.
    [James 4:5-6a; NLT]
    He longs for me; rather, jealously longs for me to be faithful to Him! So much so that He continually strengthens me so that I can choose God. This just blew me away. I can't stop thinking about it. I love my Father God, and I've re-begun to fall in love with Jesus Christ, but never in my life have I thought about what it means to fall in love with the Holy Spirit. And He's the One that lives in me! I can honestly say, however, that I am falling in love with Him for the first time and I pray it only deepens throughout my life.
I know this entry has been long (as usual) but thank you for sticking through to the end. I pray you are blessed by what (Who!) is at work in my life. For those of you who blog, particularly those who blog about what our precious Jesus Christ is doing in your lives, I am consistently blessed. What a precious gift to engage in one another's journeys via the written word. I'm barely two months younger than the personal computer (no joke) but I praise God for the blessings that the Internet can bring.

For those of you who are Christians, is it not amazing that the very same Holy Spirit that lived in Jesus Christ (and is Jesus Christ since They are both part of the Trinity) lives in both you and I? What precious unity. I stand in awe of such things and my words fail to do them justice. Nonetheless, praise God!