Friday, September 23, 2011

hands to the sky

one of my new jobs this year is working as a grad assistant for the office of student engagement and retention. my workspace is in the academic affairs suite in the library...right at the heart of the campus.

something i love about this job is what happens on friday mornings: the professional staff gather together to share stories, breathe at the end of a busy week, and pray for one another. it's one of the unique things that happen in this type of community. and honestly, it does wonders for feeling known and loved in the midst of a crazy semester.

today, we commented that all of us were really experiencing a heavy tiredness--and it's only three weeks into the semester. you can see it in our eyes and hear it in our words. i've written about how i really feel like God is going to move in powerful ways on the iwu campus this year...but that doesn't come without a battle. and we are already feeling the weariness of the fight.

if you get some time, pray for our community. and if you know any staff or students at iwu, send them an email or message on facebook or something and let them know you love and support them.

thanks. :)

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

30 by 30 update: wild weekend adventures

it was a whirlwind of a weekend. i definitely am feeling the effects of it right normal wednesday night of reflection is taking place in my bed instead of starbucks because my head decided we shouldn't go out in public tonight.

here's a little list update for you:

i wrote a fatty check to my dad for $850, so my debt is down to $1000. smackin it in the face. booyah.

i officially became a warrior. my friend, nate, and i ran the warrior dash on saturday. he has some pictures that i will post whenever he gives them to me. but you can also see a couple cool ones of me by going here: choose 2011 wd twin lakes, wisconsin--saturday. then enter 60345 for the bib number. you can see me jumping over fire and crawling through mud.

i fixed a meal right at the beginning of the month, but in the chaos of school starting and me moving, i never posted a blog about it. here it is: steak with bleu cheese crumbles, sauteed asparagus and shrimp, hawaiian bread, and watermelon. yup. it was sooooo good.

i am in the middle of a ton of books for school, but haven't finished any of them yet. i will keep you posted.

the other big thing you should know is that i am going to be rolling out some changes to the list in the next month. hey, it's my list...i can do what i want, right? as i mentioned, i moved...into a house with three super cool women from grad school (i'll do a post on them some other time)...and i want to shift my list so it resonates with where i am at right now...with this community of mine. so expect five or six things to get changed or removed completely from the list.


Wednesday, September 14, 2011

oh my gosh

i'm trying hard not to type in list mode today since i did that monday, but that's really just how my mind is wired. i like the organization of lists. eek. i will try for paragraphs.

first, i have a story about yesterday. it's called, 'cars are the literal bane of my existence, and i would instead like a moped to ride around marion.' it's a long title. but i think it really captures the essence of what i am about to say. i was driving home from work, and a couple of friendly-but-rather-overzealous people in the car next to me managed to indicate that i had a flat tire. you may recall the (hey, miranda and heather, i am about to post a link here!) incident i had in june. so imagine my frustration at hearing i was having more issues with ron's tires.

well, i quickly pulled over (ironically, it was a kfc parking lot) and got really mad at ron swanson and the world in general. that quickly petered out (i mean, it's really not useful, so what's the point?). and then i called a bunch of people to try and figure out what i should do. my friend, andy, came and helped me think clearly.

we drove slowly to a gas station across the street and filled the tire with air. then he led me to his tire place. they were super awesome. they pulled a screw out of my tire, patched it, and had me ready to go in about five minutes. and it cost me $10.70. i can't say enough about how cool they were.

so the tire situation is fixed. phew.

second, i am struggling at waking up when i am supposed to. as a result, i ate chips and salsa for breakfast.

third, i am reading bryan allain's '31 days to finding your blogging mojo.' not so much because i have great aspirations for this blog at the moment (turns out grad school is a blogsuck), but because i like bryan allain and it was $4.99.

Monday, September 12, 2011

brief pause in the action

a) i wish i had the money to subscribe to a bunch of scholarly journals, including this one. yup, i am super nerdy.

b) a week from now, i will be living in the wigger house. yowza.

c) although last week was a full week for me, this one is technically our first 'real' week. but i am claiming next week as my first real one. so take that.

d) ouch, colts. ouch. at least yovani and the brewers stopped the bleeding for a moment. and the badgers rarely disappoint.

e) my super cool boss, sara scheunemann, sent me home an hour early today and commanded me to spend time outside. i like her.

f) in my snail-paced packing, i have again affirmed that i might own too many books, movies, and shoes. in that order. and most of my books aren't even in marion...

g) i am making a speedy trip to madison this weekend to run a race i haven't trained for...even a little. should be great fun.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

new student experience...2000

eleven years ago, when i was a wee freshman girl at the university of indianapolis (go greyhounds!), we were required to take sort of an orientation class based on our majors. i guess the point was to begin forming cohorts early or something.

but for those of us hapless undeclared students, we got stuck in a special section: new student experience. so there we were, a bunch of eighteen year-olds without any direction in our lives.

each of these classes was led by a faculty or staff member. and there was also a peer leader. the purpose of the class was generally to be a resource for students--"[presenting] academic and developmental meet the needs of students and help them develop skills and relationships that will serve them well as they pursue their degree and career goals." yup. i am nerdy enough that i went to the uindy website to look that up. no shame.

my staff member was christy stone, and my peer leader was tiffany rife.

now, i don't know if they did this with other students or if i was just a special project to them, but these two women dramatically shaped my future at u of i...and my life in general.

i felt lost and completely without purpose when i got to school. i didn't know what i wanted to do or who i wanted to be. christy and tiffany basically took me by the hand and 'encouraged' me to get involved on campus. they made me help out at events. they forced me to become an orientation assistant. they bullied me into applying for a position on the campus program board. they coaxed me into being a peer leader.

i was undeclared for a year and a half, and even after that, i ended up changing my major halfway through my junior year. but it didn't matter. i was hooked on my school. i bought into the community. i was passionate about involving others.

i stayed in school because people on campus were committed to me.


the things i am doing with my life right now have everything to do with members of a campus community investing in me. very few things bring me greater joy than connecting with students.

it's pretty sweet.

so...thanks, christy and tiffany. your lives are still impacting students today.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

wednesday nors

nights of reflection are back!

every wednesday night this semester, from about 5-9, you can find me plopped in a chair at the marion starbucks.

i have a hectic schedule. it basically jumps from one job to coffee date to class to job to...well, you get the point. i don't know the last time i deliberately crammed so many things in my life. i'm fairly certain i was never this busy during my undergrad days.

but here are two things i carved out in my schedule: night of reflection on wednesdays and sabbath on sundays. if my life is going to be busy and full of people, i need to be diligent about stopping and resting in my father's arms. otherwise, i will shrivel up and die.

it's going to be a good year, friends. i live and move in his grace.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


last year, my focus in marion was on building authentic community.

last night, i experienced the fruit of that labor in a really excellent way.

there are some super awesome people in my life that have become very dear friends in just a year...and what a cool love and encourage one another in what projects to be a very busy and stressful time of life for us.

in a couple of weeks, i will be moving into the wigger house. i'll tell you more about that later. it's a story of sweet community, and i am very excited.

last night, the wigger house girls hosted a time of fellowship. we built a fire, roasted random food, and shared our hearts. we talked about the upcoming months, challenges we are facing, our fears and dreams, etc. and then we prayed together.

what a comfort these women are to my life! what a joy! i honestly didn't need more affirmation to know that i was in the right place and that leaving wisconsin was the correct decision for my life last year. but God, in his loving grace, keeps pouring that affirmation out anyway. this is right where i am supposed to be.

i get to work with students, learn, laugh, love, and grow. i have friends who will challenge and encourage and love me well...all within arm's reach.

my God gives good gifts.