Monday, June 13, 2011

Oh hey there summer

So it's officially summer. Much has changed since I last wrote! I don't even know where to begin!

Well...I last wrote on April 23rd. That was the day of my first date with John. He's a pretty fantastic guy. We met through eHarmony and just simply clicked. We've gone on lots of dates since then and things have been going swimmingly. I like him. A lot. He is an HR guy, doing interviews and whatnot. He is 26 years old. He plays guitar (which I absolutely love!). And he is the most kind caring compassionate guy I know. So needless to say he has been a huge blessing in my life and I am so grateful. :)


This is John and I at his parent's cottage on Crystal Lake. Love it.

Okay enough with the mushy gushy. What else is new. I started my internship at the beginning of May. I am working with two therapists, one named Maureen, and the other Laura. They are awesome. I am thoroughly loving my job. Basically for now I just shadow and write progress notes. But the purpose of the program, if I haven't said this already, is when parents get reported as abusive or neglectful to CPS (Children's Protective Services) they get referred to our program. Our program's goals are to teach the parents how to be appropriate parents. We also do case management like helping people find housing, get jobs, acquire food and the like. It's quite an intense job. But I love it! So much. I even get my own desk area that I have put pictures up in. It's fun. I feel like a real professional. Haha.

What else what else. I ran the 10K with Beth a while back. That was literally KILLER. I nearly died. Or so it felt like. Haha. But we made it. We did not stop or walk once; that was our goal and we accomplished it, so that was good. Oh and when we went hiking we had a complete blast as well. It was such a great break between semesters. :)

I went to Chicago last week with Kathryn on the train. That was fun. We met up with Kelly and went to a free Iron and Wine concert at Millennium Park. It was super hot, but really fun. After the concert we went to a really nice restaurant with Kelly and her boyfriend and his friend. Good times good times.

But yeah...I would love to continue to update you, but alas, I've got homework to do. :( On a brighter note, a little over a month until Benny and Kristen get married! So that's fun. Gotta love wedding season, one down four more to go. Haha. But yeah...I best be off before I'm up to all hours of the night doing the H.W. Boo. But yeah...love to you my friends!

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Running out of titles Title!

Hey Y'all!

It's been so crazy busy 'round these parts lately. Phew!

My parents were up in GR a few weekends back, that was fun. They stayed at one of our sister properties and that meant I got to sit in the hot tub after my long run on Saturday, which was a nice perk! :)

Here we are at Panera Bread after church on Sunday:



Also a week or two ago, I went to a Matisyahu concert at Calvin and it was phenomenal! Here's Matisyahu and Trevor Hall:



Oh and my good friend Alyssa is pregnant and due in about a month and I went to her baby shower last weekend:



And tomorrow is Easter. I won't be going home unfortunately, because I have exams on Monday, but I will be celebrating with my house. As a work bonus around Thanksgiving time I got a turkey and we are finally going to give that a try and see if we can whip that up for our meal. Should be good! :)

Then Monday, like I said, I have exams. What fun, oh joy. Hopefully they won't be too bad. I need to get a lot more studying in between now and then, but I'll survive! And then I'll have a week and a half or so off before spring/summer classes start.

My last day of work at Best Western is next week Thursday! Crazy how time flies. I'm excited. Also, work related, at work we had a Biggest Loser Weight Loss Challenge, and I WON! I got $32. Haha. Good times.

Then Friday Beth and I are going backpacking on the Manistee River Trail that loops with the North Country National Scenic Trail. So that should be fun. We're going for three or four days, depending on weather and how far we feel like hiking each day. Neither of us have taken a trip without an experienced hiker, so this might prove to be a bit interesting, but I am so excited for it! :) Can't wait. I even made a paper chain countdown in my room til we leave. Haha.

After hiking, my house and I are celebrating Kels' and Beth's birthdays (May 2nd and 5th) together by most likely painting pottery at a little studio. Should be fun!

Then after that I'm going home to St. Joe for a few days. :) Haven't been home since Christmas, so I'm excited to be there. Plus one of my good friends is moving into an apartment, so it will be fun to see that, and her.

Man there's so much going on. On May 9th I start my internship at Bethany Christian Services! I'm SO excited/nervous. I need to go shopping to get some business casual clothes! Haha. But it should be good.

May 14th is the River Bank 10K that Beth and I and possibly Kels are running. We haven't registered yet though...we'd better get on that! Haha.

SOOO...basically, other than exams, there is lots of good stuff to look forward to! God is so good. :)

I hope you all are doing well. Love to you my friends.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Almost April...!

Wowza, I cannot believe it! It's almost April already. Tomorrow is the day. Haha.

Update on the running situation: I have been slacking on my weekday exercises, cross-training, strength, that good stuff; however, Beth and I ran our 4 miles last Saturday and we're shootin' for 4.5 this Saturday! Whew! We can do it! Here's a pic of us after our run last week, very determined to stick with it!



Haha. That was fun. And then after that, I was trying to pour some creamer in my coffee, and then this happened:



Don't cry over spilt milk, Beth says! Lol.

Oh and most importantly, I purchased a two man backpacking tent from steep and cheap (53% off!!!) I'm SO excited to use it this spring/summer/fall!



So there you have it, my life in a nutshell! I've got about a month left of this semester. Then before I know it, spring summer semester will be here, I'll be starting my internship, Ben and Kristen will be getting married, Nikki and Mike will be getting married, and holy smokes there's just so much to look forward to! Hooray!

:) love to you my friends.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

March Madness

Okay so I don't do the whole March madness thing for basketball or whatever, but it's March and there is madness going around! Haha, so I thought it was an appropriate title.

Madness as in school is crazy, work is keeping me busy, and the housing situation has been stressful! Let me elaborate: School has been great, however I have a few big projects/papers coming up within the next few weeks. I've got a biopsychosocial assessment due this Wednesday in which we have to create an imaginary person with a fake disorder and give them assessment tests and write up a report/assessment on them and put it in a professional looking folder. Then I've got a group project/paper/presentation due in (I think) a week and a half that we have just barely started on. And I've got a literature critique due for my Social Research class (hopefully it won't be too hard, but it will be time consuming) and other things I am sure I am forgetting! Whew!

And as for work, I've been working about 24 hours a week, which isn't too bad. But I'm meeting with a budget counselor again this week to decide once and for all if I can afford to not work at the hotel during my internship. During the next three semesters I will have to work approximately 26 hours a week at my internship plus approximately 10 hours of classes plus homework on top of that! So I don't know if time and stress wise I'll be able to handle Best Western. Stress. Ugh.

Our housing situation has been madness as well. There are four girls living in our house again next year so we are on the hunt for two more. But the catch is all of the girls want to know these new girls well and think that they will be able to live well with them...so that narrows down our hunt. Let me tell you, it's madness.

But aside from the madness, life is going well! I'm training with Beth and Kels for the RiverBank Run, only the 10K not the 25K but still! And we decided that if we can't make it up to 10K by May 14th, that we'll do the 5K instead, so we will register later and closer to the date. We ran 2.5 miles yesterday and we're working our way up to 4 miles this Saturday. WHEW! Keep us in your prayers that we stick with it. Haha. But its been fun thus far, so hopefully it won't be too bad. Today according to our training schedule is "Stretch and Strength" day so I'm going to do Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred because there's some good stuff in there. Hopefully that will be good for today.

Yesterday I went out to coffee with my friend Cara (used to by my suitemate freshman year for a semester!). We went to a new little consignment shop in GR called "Rock Paper Scissors" and I got a really cute grey dress, originally $52 for $13! I was so excited. Granted the zipper is a bit broken and the arms are a bit gappy, but I figure my mom can fix that right up! Haha. It's so cute. :)

Then last night I went to Ada Bible Church with Megan. It was so good to see her. It's definitely been too long! But yeah. The sermon was about being set apart. It was a good sermon, wish it had a bit more application to it though. What are your thoughts on being set apart? How does one become set apart besides living their lives explicitly for God? I mean, that's a given, but how does it change your day to day? Hmm. Something to think about this week for sure.

Well, I'm at work right now so I should probably be doing something "work-related" although its always so slow on Sundays that I don't really know what to do! But yeah...I hope God blesses you all today, and this week! Oh and keep my friend Erin in your prayers as her Grandma died yesterday and she is all the way in Hungary and won't be able to make it home for the funeral! So yeah, keep her in your prayers.

Love to you all my friends and family.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Tacoma, WA

Well it is officially my last day of spring break and consequently my last day in Tacoma. But I've had a complete blast! Here's a pic of me and Benny drinking some lattes in the park:



Not only did we enjoy lattes in the park, but we went on a three day backpacking trip! It was so much fun. We went on the coast of Northwest Washington in Olympic National Park and wow, HOW FUN! :) Since then we've been enjoying each other's company and I've been cooking for him and his friends and his fiancee Kristen whom I love! Today is my last day and we're doing a bit of shopping and then my flight leaves at 12:45am and I arrive in GR at 9:36am Saturday morning. Gotta love it.

But life other than spring break has been pretty fantastic as well. I got my internship placement and had my interview. I got the job! I will be working at Bethany Christian Services with their Early Impact program. Basically by the end of my year there I will be leading therapy sessions helping people become better parents. These parents are mandated by CPS to our services because they have been reported as being abusive or neglectful. In order to keep their kids, they go through our program. We meet in the client's homes once or twice a week for an hour or more. Should be pretty interesting. Not gonna lie, its a bit intimidating but I'm thrilled to have the opportunity to give it a try!

Second semester has been going fairly well. I've had a few papers and presentations and things are going smoothly. I like my professors a lot this semester and well, life is just going swimmingly! I couldn't be more blessed!

I've been reading "Celebration of Discipline" by Richard Foster and I wanted to highlight some of the lessons on Simplicity:

1. Buy things for their usefulness rather than their status.
2. Reject anything that is producing an addiction in you.
3. Develop a habit of giving things away.
4. Refuse to be propagandized by the custodians of modern gadgetry.
5. Learn to enjoy things without owning them.
6. Develop a deeper appreciation for the creation.
7. Look with a healthy skepticism at all "buy now, pay later" schemes.
8. Obey Jesus' instructions about plain, honest speech.
9. Reject anything that breeds the oppression of others.
10. Shun anything that distracts you from seeking first the kingdom of God.

Wow! What awesome life lessons. And here I'm reading this book in a Starbucks sipping on my unnecessary Mocha Frap, writing on my new MacBook, texting on my new iPhone...GOSH! I think I'm failing at this whole simplicity thing. But I'm gonna work on it! One way I'm going to work on it is by taking a deeper look at number 6. I want to go camping and backpacking a lot more once it warms up! It really gave me an appreciation for how beautiful God's creation is! And how moving and powerful. Love it.

Anywho...Kristen and Ben are on their way to pick me up from the Starbucks and so I must leave you now. But its been real. Its been fun. Its been real fun. :)

Love you to you my friends.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Welcome 2011

Hello all.

I have a haiku
It is very much for you
You think of one too!

Now technically, according to wikipedia that is, a haiku in English includes the use of a season word, i.e. fall, winter April etc...but I'm a reckless rule breaker. You know me. Haha.

So today is the first day of the 2011. Welcome all to a brand-spankin new year. What are your resolutions? I have five. One for each aspect of myself, naturally.

Physically: Run a 10K
Emotionally: Go out to coffee with a friend 2x a month
Socially: Have more patience with my mom
Spiritually: Write in prayer journal 3-4x per week
Mentally: Read 3 classic novels throughout the year

Since the hotel where I work has been closed due to fire and flood (yes you heard me, flood), I have had a lot of extra time on my hands to sit around and do nothing. I've read some Harry Potter, I've watched some Friends episodes, but tonight has been most fun of all. I compiled a "List o' Fun" for the new year! Here is what it entails:

Visit every coffee shop in GR
http://www.coffeehouse.com/store/coffeehouse_directory_results.asp?city=Grand+Rapids&state=MI&radius=0&page=1

Reread all of Harry Potter

Watch the entire series of Friends

Go camping/backpacking

Go to the zoo

Go on a picnic

Go bowling

Write a poem

Make a photo collage

Color in a coloring book

Watch a foreign film

Write a letter using cut-up magazine letters and deliver it

Compile a list of 100 random things about myself

Memorize a favorite poem

Host a tea party

Decoupage something (furniture, piece of paper, lunch box, glass jar for candle, plate, fork, etc…)

So there you have it; that is my working list of fun stuff to do in the next year. If you have any suggestions or additions to the list, please feel free to add them as a comment on this post, or contact me! I'd love to have more fun ideas! But yeah, I'm really looking forward to this new year. There is much in store for me, I can feel it. I'm hoping to visit Ben and Kristen this spring break in Tacoma, I have a minimum of 4 weddings this summer/fall to attend, one of which is Ben's and another of which is my housemate's. I am going to be starting my social work internship during the summer semester. Hopefully that goes well. I turn 23 in a few weeks! Crazy. What else what else...I don't know but I'm certain that there will be more. There always is. :)

So Christmas was fantastic, Ben and Kristen got to be with us. It was great to spend time with them and start with the wedding planning. New Year's Eve was amusing. I worked until 10pm and then went to a house party for a bit and rang in the new year at a dance party at Sazerac in GR. And now here I am. Eagerly awaiting the clock to strike 11pm when I get off of work, and eagerly awaiting to see what God has in store for me this next year. I can hardly contain my excitement!

I hope this new year finds you all well. I pray that God is with each and every one of you. Blessings to you my friends. love to all.