Friday, July 30, 2004

teal toes

this afternoon, my toes are this bright shade of greenish blue. i'm painting my office today (the bland whiteness doctor's office feel just did not do it for me, which is funny, because it is a doctor's office...) anyways...the walls of my office are now these lovely shades of "falling water," "rum raisin" and "brown sugar." i appreciate the creativity of these names for sure, but at the same time, it means i want to eat the paint much more than i want to paint with it.

i got to see my friend jade today, too, which was great! jade works in the administrative office for y.d. and reachout, and she's moving to work with y.d. full-time in the town of anacortes. i first met her last october when i interviewed with y.d. and stayed at her house....anyways, we're going to hang out monthly for some solid bonding/mentoring type relationship building. woohoo for that! jade likes the color green, which is funny, because her name is jade...but i don't think she likes the same color of green that's on my toes. i'll have to ask her.

p.s. last night i finally spent the night in my apartment and today i go grocery makes me feel very grown up!

Thursday, July 29, 2004

all moved in!

today was my first official day of work.  Bronco (my supervisor) and I sat down to discuss work schedule and some preliminary planning for this year.  It definitely seems that my job will not take on its full form until the school year starts, so it turns out this is a great time of the year to move in and get settled...meaning that today, i got to pick out paint colors for my office (falling water, brown sugar and rum raisin!  yum!)...and tomorrow, i get to paint it!  woohoo!

and i'm officially all moved into the apartment...i'm still at my host family's until my sheets make it through the washer and dryer, but after that, i'm officially on my own. 

last night i got to make my first venture into seattle for dinner and a walk on the's the closest i've ever lived to any city, and thus far it seems like a very wonderful city to live close to!  hooray!

Tuesday, July 27, 2004

Bible Study

Last night was my second meeting with the Angerbauer's home group Bible Study.  This is a YD led home group for Arlington kids, and there are about 15 kids who are a part of this weekly Bible study.  I say it's my second meeting, because I came to this same Bible Study way back in October during the week I was interviewing and checking out the ministry.  When I walked in the door to the Angerbauer's home last night, one of the kids shouted out, "Hey!  Where have you been?  I haven't seen you in a long time!"  and i laughed...

At first, the kids were so distracted, i thought that they weren't learning anything, because they were so off topic and random....but finally, the kid that I thought was completely off his rocker called out, "Why do we call God a He?  Why isn't God a she?  I think we're all racists!"  I laughed again....and a good discussion of God's gender followed...only to be interrupted by another student saying that "We are God's masterpiece just like Albert Einstein's masterpiece is the lightbulb...." 

Monday, July 26, 2004


yesterday afternoon i returned from the eight-day Owyhee River Kayaking trip!  myself, four adults, and eight kids had an amazing week travelling fifty miles on this river in the middle of the arid desert climate of southeast Oregon (close to Idaho and Nevada)...

Highlights from the week:
*spending lots of time in conversation with the three teen girls on the trip.  one of them made a commitment to Christ this week!
*learning how to maneuver my kayak--the first few days i was terrible...i had to use my scrawny arms to paddle me, my boat, and a hundred pounds of gear down the river, without a current sometimes...eugh...but i'm very muscular now.
*getting horribly defeated in a water fight by two of the teen boys.  keep in mind it was two against one.
*having time to read by Bible and journal and sketch in such an isolated place.  we didn't see any other people, roads,  houses, or power lines, for six days
*making some great friends in ministry, with both my Youth Dynamics counterpart, Bronco, and the three staff from Reachout Expeditions, who led the trip.
*singing about every song i've ever learned while paddling down the river....sometimes the kids enjoyed this and joined in...sometimes i used this as a humourous tactic to annoy them.  it was fun either way.
*surfing and swimming in the rapids!
*sharing the "question of the day."  one night, i was the adult leader for the evening Bible study, and our question of the day was "If you could change a year of your life, or a day of your life, what would it be, why, and how would you change it."  for the first time all week, everybody, kids included, got really vulnerable, sharing about struggles with addictions or broken relationships or poor choices...and at the end of the talk, i shared about the Beatitudes in Matthew 5 (our theme for the week), about "Blessed are the Merciful, and Blessed are the Peacemakers..." and I was able to share about God's characteristics of mercy and peace with the was a great time of connection and sharing...and it was so good to see the kids open up and share....
*the van ride home--in spending more time with conversations with the eight teens who went on the trip, i was excited to realize, i will see them again...around town, in school, at Bible study....i've built relationships with them--and those relationships are going to continue...

Saturday, July 17, 2004

the rest of the story...

this morning i rolled out of bed at 4am to take my travel buddy, my brother sean, to the seattle-tacoma airport and send him home!

we had a great second half of travelling this week, with a few notable highlights:
*mt. rushmore! i actually bumped into president lincoln in the gift shop, and he tipped his hat at me.
*emptiness: wyoming and southern montana are very spacious and very empty...even more empty than south dakota...we got no cell phone or fm radio reception for hours.
*kalispell, montana: a great visit with the Bjork family (family of one of my friends from Kenya)...and an afternoon trudging through snow at 6500 ft. in
Glacier National Park! We took the hidden lake loop trail, and I was unfortunately wearing my Teva Sandals. I didn't know there would be so much snow on the trail, and my toes were COOOLD! but saying hello to a few passing mountain goats made it all worth it...
*traffic in seattle: it was even worse than the traffic we encountered in chicago! yuck! but we made it safely up the I-5 to Arlington by Thursday afternoon...

There will be no updates after today until next week, because TOMORROW--i'm leaving for an 8-day kayaking trip with Youth Dynamics and Reachout Expeditions. We're taking five teen guys and three teen girls to kayak 50 miles in the Owyhee River in remote Southeast Oregon, close to Idaho and Nevada...there will be much to share upon my return!

Thursday, July 15, 2004

safely in arlington

sean and i arrived safely in arlington this afternoon!


Tuesday, July 13, 2004


this morning sean and i are dining upon a continental breakfast from the best western...which is a deserved time of rest after spending sixteen hours in the car yesterday! and we didn't even come close to killing or annoying each other.

highlights from yesterday's drive
*Austin, MN: the official SPAM museum! we were able to learn about the history of spam, play SPAM games, visit the Monty Python SPAM cafe and purchase our favorite SPAM memoribilia!
*Mitchell, SD: the official CORN PALACE! It was too good to be entire building decorated with murals made of was designed in celebration of the bicentennial of Lewis and Clark, so all the murals were of Lewis and Clark and Sacajawea!
*The world's largest bull's head. We drove by it somewhere in South was not impressive at ALL, but after seeing a sign a bit later for the world's largest PHEASANT, we decided National Lampoon's was mocking an actual problem when they mocked "The world's second largest ball of twine."
*The Badlands. On the way into our destination of Rapid City, SD last night, we took a scenic byway through the Badlands National Park! was amazing...Sean was certainly overwhelmed with the serenity and the color...and we were there right at sunset and watched a bright pink sun set behind the hills! ACK! such a good detour...

Today we're headed to Mt. Rushmore and Devil's Tower on our way through SD and WY into Montana! Woohoo!

Saturday, July 10, 2004


the car is packed! and now i'm off to bed...because tomorrow the driving begins...

Friday, July 09, 2004

I was just kidding...

...about going to the tea house. it was CLOSED! apparently half the restaurants in town close down for the post-4th of July week. It must be a slow restaurant week...and i'll admit that the people at the serenity tea house need a vacation, but STILL! this means no more opps for chicken salad before i leave, which makes me terribly sad.

is it possible to ship chicken salad across the country? i'm sure it is. maybe i can order it....but you canNOT ship the tea house itself, that's for sure...something to look forward to at Christmas i suppose. *sigh*...

Thursday, July 08, 2004

serenity tea house.

"steep yourself in serenity"

that's what the sign outside the serenity tea house says...

anyways--in leaving ohio this weekend, i'm trying to do the things i really enjoy about being home, and one of those things is enjoying a lunch by myself at the serenity tea house on main street. they serve the most amazing chicken salad in the whole world, and i can purchase tea by the pot. everytime my friends come to visit me, i take them to the tea house...and it's impossible to not love it. that's right. i'm making an absolutist statement. it is impossible for anyone to not love the serenity tea house.

the lady who owns it (Jeanne) was my brother's preschool teacher. she always says hi to me when i come into eat, and she never asks me to leave (even when i stay there and read for two hours.) There is not "Jumping Bean" or "Starbucks" in coshocton, but there is a serenity tea house. everytime i eat lunch there, i run into someone i know from a past life--because that's what happens when you eat lunch in a small town...

when i leave on sunday, i will say a prayer for the tea house...because i will miss it!

Wednesday, July 07, 2004

the moving van is here!

just about ten minutes ago, Eric from ABF Trucking dropped off my empty commercial trailer!! This empty 28-foot trailer will be used by ME to pack all of MY belongings into...and then tomorrow, they will pick it up, and it will begin its journey westward! and who knows what exciting travel companions my stuff will have? ketchup? corn? neon signage? a tractor? the possibilities are endless! I hope that my stuff has a good time travelling across the country in a trailer...there are no windows in the trailer, so my stuff might get bored...but hopefully it will all stay intact! That's the main thing.

but between now and then, we do have to LOAD the trailer! eeek!

Saturday, July 03, 2004

bubble wrap!

the problem with using bubble wrap as a packing material is 2-fold:
#1--Bubble wrap is a fairly expensive packing material (much more expensive than newspaper).
#2--The joys of playing with bubble wrap far outweigh the joys of wrapping up breakables in bubble wrap.

Today i am on a quest to not only buy a lot of bubble wrap, but also to love the bubble wrap...but not love it to the point that i destroy it and render it useless only because it is so fun to pop. To suffice, i have written a bubble wrap haiku:

Friendly bubble wrap!
We'll pop you in Washington
Now you must be packed

Joyous bubble wrap!
Much more fun than foam peanuts
Weep not in the box

Glorious bubble wrap!
Protect my brand new dishes
Serve your purpose well

I hope that this ode to bubble wrap has enlightened and insired you. If you have any bubble wrap memories to share, please post a comment.