Monday, September 29, 2008

The Wedding Festivities are Over!

2 months after the hubbub of wedding celebrations began, with the completion of our Washington Reception this weekend, the celebrations are now over!

After enjoying a great time yesterday with about a hundred of our friends from YD and church, Clay and I said a big, "Whew." The wedding celebrations are officially over. A bridal shower weekend in Ohio, a guys' trip to NYC, a gals' weekend in Pittsburgh, a wedding week in Ohio, a honeymoon in Belize, a weekend reception in San Antonio and an afternoon reception in Washington. All over.

Last night, we were too tired to even open our last few they wait. And with all the logistics of squeezing our 2-separate-houses lives into a 1-apartment life, we have an enormous stack of yet-to-be-tackled Thank You notes staring at us from the pile of yet-to-be-unpacked boxes.

Sometimes, Clay says, "Marry me again." And I say, "You want to do another wedding? You want to repack and move again?" to which he promptly responds, "No." Naive Romanticism and Sarcastic Pragmatism are an interesting match.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

The Internet is like, a whole new world

On Tuesday, I went down to Fuller Theological Seminary's Northwest Extension Campus (located very close to this spot right here--in the Queen Anne are of Seattle...isn't Seattle beautiful?)

I registered for my one Graduate Class (Early Church History - CH500) and learned how to use Portico, the school's internal web for students and faculty.

Let me tell you what--in the nine years since I started school in 1999, like, school is a whole new thing.

Not entirely new, but, in 1999, I was just introduced to Power Point, and I was still using my very first hotmail account. In 2008, my school email is a Google Application and I can pay my tuition through EFT or get miles on my Southwest Visa. My class syllabus is a Word Document I download from the Class Webpage.

Gone are the days are waiting in the line at the Registrar's Office with your bubble sheet. Gone are the days of carrying around a floppy disk to print out your paper at the Library because your HP 660 ran out of toner. Gone are the days of camping out at the library to wait in line to use the research computers.

I can't imagine what it's like for y'all who return to school since the dawn of computers...I'm like, shocked enough. I can't wait to become Facebook friends with my professors!

Monday, September 22, 2008

Mount Rainier is rain-ier...

Clay and I just celebrated our first Camping Trip! Goood times. Good food, good scenery, good company.

These first few months of marriage have made it ever-clearer that I am anal-retentive in areas where one is supposed to be relaxed...i.e. camping trip. Isn't that supposed to be chill and low-maintenance? Not with me, man! Three evenings of packing and planning and shopping and preparing...lists of supplies, lists of food, and a very thorough menu were all part of the pre-camping fun. (Clay would not call this fun.)

But the preparations and pre-event stress paid off, because we had so much fun! The campground was great, the food was great, and we used all the gear we bought at the last minute...(an axe, a collapsible 5-gallon water container, tarps, rope, extra tent stakes). It was also exciting to break in our brand new gear! Our new tent and new Whisperlite stove. And, we re-learned how to play cribbage and explored several pieces of Mount Rainier's Northeast corner.

On Saturday, Hannah & Jon drove all the way out from Seattle (a 2-hourish drive) only to go on the most miserable of miserable rainy hikes with us! The trail itself was pretty cool--having been rerouted back and forth across and through a riverbed...but the payoff at the top was less than spectacular, since Rainier was fogged in when we got up there. By that time, it was very cold and very rainy, and we still had a 90-minute hike back down to the bottom. By the time we got there, we were all cold and wet through...

Hannah reassured me that they wouldn't drive all that way to have a miserable day in the cold rain for just anyone. So, it's nice to have friends that go out of their way to endure ridiculous experiences with you. When we were on our way home and dry again, Clay said, "That was fun...I liked camping, but I don't ever, ever, ever want to go hiking or camping in the rain again. That was not fun." So, considering that fall is settling into Washington, it may be May before we're camping again...

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Goooo Camp-in' on the Moooooun-tain!

After many weeks of deliberation, it has been determined that tomorrow, we will go camping here:

And attempt a glacial day hike with these fine people here:

One of my bridesmaids Hannah (whom I originally met in Kenya) and her husband Jon just moved to Seattle, and we've wanted to get a camping/hiking excursion in before Hannah and I start school.

I've been planning menus and making packing lists, and I absolutely cannot wait to put to use some of the new and fantastic gear we've received off of our REI Registry. (i.e. a brand new Marmot tent, an MSR Whisperlite, and my trusty Lexan French Press.) Yesterday, I was stressing about about the meal planning a little bit--thinking about how much we'd need...what variety I wanted, etc. And I was scolding Clay a bit for not caring more.

He responded, ever so eloquently, "Listen, if I were planning the menu, it'd be simple. Hot dogs, buns, s'mores, cereal, milk, chips, salsa. Every meal. That's it."

To which I of course respond, "But on your long day hike, what about a pack lunch..."

To which he responds, "No, no, no...on a low-maintenance camping trip, there's no all-day return to camp to make your lunch at every meal."

I'm, of course, trying to figure out how to saute vegetables over an open fire and trying to secure the best recipe for grilling salmon. And I'm hoping for a 7-mile hike to a glacier on Saturday!

So...apparently Clay's up for quite the adventure!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Beware of Ike!

Since I have lived outside the Midwest for 4+ years now, I'm rather acclimated to boring weather. 300 days of gray days of high's in the 60's. It's not much to write home about really. (Not that I want a tsunami or volcanic eruption to spice things up, anyways.)

But it never ceases to amaze me how much the people of Ohio get impacted by hurricanes. As you may already know, Ohio does not border any hurricane-ridden ocean. Coshocton, Ohio is, in fact, 484 miles from Atlantic City, on the eastern seaboard, and 900 miles from the gulf coast.

So why is it that the state is continually affected by hurricanes?? Seriously! Why are 110,000 homes without power in Ohio after a hurricane!? (Please don't respond to that with a comment about how big hurricanes are...duh!) What I mean is, isn't it amazing that any storm could be that insanely huge that it can pummel Galveston and continue its wake of destruction across an entire country?

I'm just saying--hurricanes are crazy. And you can't live in Ohio and be safe from hurricanes, believe it or now you know.

P.S. An unrelated cyclone ripped through Clay and I's apartment yesterday, spilling most of the contents of the previously named "Junk Room" throughout the rest of the house. This was an intentional effort to reclaim the Junk Room for more noble purposes, and not caused by wind. Although happy things will result from this reorganization, I severely miss my days of obliviousness when all mess was confined to the Junk Room.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Reentry & Reflections on Creativity

I may be ready to reenter the blogosphere. There were some obvious things that distracted me from blogging in 2008 (most notably, planning a wedding). And lots of dynamics and things that go on throughout planning a wedding aren't really things I felt motivated to share with the's an incredibly emotional time!

Most notably, wedding planning absorbed every spare ounce of creative energy I had, which was good in the sense that the wedding was beautiful, and bad in the sense that I had no creative energy left for anything else (including blogging).

Since arriving home from our Honeymoon, I've noticed the feeling returning to my creative fingers and toes--and there's energy to try new recipes, to plan weekend excursions, and to write. Clay and I had already noticed how crippling it can be for us to not have an outlet for our creative energies, and I've now noticed how crippling it can be to have some huge thing running your life so that you're prevented from day-to-day creativity.

No more! Tonight, we will enjoy spicy thai green beans and tofu, a vegan meal in honor of Heidi! And today, I'm writing a blog! This afternoon I may even write my ministry newsletter and start planning for the next issue of our ministry-wide newsletter, Reflections.

So, hello, you. I'm excited to be back.