Sunday, August 31, 2014

The choice




So it begins, this branching out of mine. Living eight hours away from my home, dwelling with people I have just met, and studying harder than I ever have before.
Am I willing to be changed by my experiences here, or will I refuse to listen to others?
Will I thrive in my classes or just do enough to get by?
Will I invest in relationships with my classmates or shut myself off because it's easier that way?
Will I stretch myself or expect others to change?

The choice is up to me.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

focus




The sound of crickets, rustling leaves, chirping birds, and rippling water mix with sounds of civilization, of the train whistle and busy traffic.
All I can see is the pond, trees, golden sunlight, and distant power lines, but I know that just over the row of trees and houses is the train station and the busy town that surrounds it. 
Tonight is a beautiful night, full of laughing sunshine, a teasing breeze, and a refreshing warmth. But I could focus, if I so chose, on the ugly power lines and rushing vehicles.
My enjoyment of this evening is entirely dependent on where I choose to focus.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

fist pumps



















fist pumps
McDonald's ice cream cones
one-day field trips
making fun of commercials
playing tourist
random fact debates
stick figures on the side of a 12-passenger van
life as a musical
brainstorming
Adventures in Odyssey and movie quotes
matching t-shirts
popcorn
reading books outloud
Daddy Claus, not Santa Claus

I love my family.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Cell phone snapshots



bracelets from the Dominican Republic. Yay for friends going on missions trips. *smile*


Late night selfies


Celebrating this little one's birthday



Last beach trip with my friends




Car all packed up, ready to head to college






Cell phone snapshots.
End of summer and camp.
 Beach run with friends. 
College packing. Lots and lots of packing and shopping packed into a couple of days. 
Driving eight hours to college. 
Unpacking. 
Making friends with the girls in my suite.
Almost jumping for joy because my roommate loves God, tea, Jane Austen, and fruit even more than I do. 
Marathon watching Emma Approved
Finishing The Fellowship of the Ring.

My life over the past few weeks in a nutshell.
How is your August going?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Update on my summer

Hello, all! I know it's been a while, but I figured I would update you on what I've been doing. As some of you may recall, I am working at a Child Evangelism Fellowship camp all summer as part of their college bound program. The first two weeks of the summer were Christian Youth in Action, which is an amazing program in which teenagers learn how to share the gospel with children through Open Air, literature distribution, and 4-day Bible clubs.

Those couple of weeks were followed by three weeks of junior camp. I was a senior counselor for weeks 1 and 3 and I ran the trading post and taught handcraft week 2. It is currently teen week, and I am a "floating counselor" which means I am a junior counselor for three cabins (for junior camp, there is a senior and a junior counselor in each cabin of 6-8 campers). 

I've definitely had some trying moments, but I have seen God work in me and through me, especially last week. I had an autistic girl in my cabin and I got really frustrated with her refusal to listen to anyone. At some points, I would have just yelled at her and walked away, but the Holy Spirit helped me to stay calm and patient.

If you think of me, I would really appreciate prayers as there are still two ad a half weeks left to go and I am exhausted. If you would like to write me letters, you can e-mail me at 
knittingphotography (at) gmail (dot) com and I can send you the address. 

These pictures are mostly from the two photography classes I taught so far this year.




Being a counselor means doing a lot of people's hair for the banquet. *smile* I love it




My family came to camp week 2, so I was able to spend some time with them even though I'm away all summer.


I got to hide underneath the riflry 




p.s. you can follow me on instagram and get more current updates. *smile*

Saturday, June 21, 2014

words




I often limit myself by my words and attitudes. Instead of actively trying to be more patient, loving, or motivated, I'll think or talk about how I'm just not a patient person, I'm not really a people person, or I have senioritis. The problem is, when I talk like that, I hip away at my patience or motivation until I actually don't have much left. I'll take on a negative, self-deprecating attitude under the guise of "being honest" instead of actually praying about it and working to do better. I don't know why I take this route, but it needs to change. 

p.s. This is my 400th post! I can't believe it! Thank you all for being amazing followers.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Eye contact

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{via}

When did we become a culture in which making small talk with strangers is uncomfortable; tapping away at a glowing screen is more important than tapping into people's lives; staring out a window or down at the ground is more normal than making eye contact and smiling.

I went to Boston for a school field trip a couple of weeks ago, and riding the subway made me really think as I observed my fellow passengers. We're all so wrapped up in ourselves that we often don't see the young woman who boards, crying silently, or the man who keeps looking nervously at the ma of subway stops, or the frantic woman who almost missed her stop. If we catch someone looking at us, we think they're creepy. But maybe they're not. Maybe once we look up and around we can share a smile with the college student who almost dropped her phone as the car jerked forward, or stick an arm in the closing door so the frazzled woman can get off at the correct station. 

"What sunshine is to flowers, smiles are to humanity. They are but trifles, to be sure, but, scattered along life's pathway, the good they do is inconceivable."
Joseph Addison