10 things to be grateful for.

15 08 2007

Stephanie sits down at her computer lounges on the couch with her laptop overheating in her lap. She checks her e-mail checks to see if she has a new e-mail from Mike even though she know she doesn’t. She gets an IM from a guyfriend from college which leads her to reminiscing about a blog her college friends started 4 years ago, and reading those early entries. She tries to find songs to suggest to her friend who’s getting married in a month for background music during the reception. Than, because she promised herself she’d jump back on the horse she checks her WP account which she hasn’t touched in months.


Last night my beautiful roommate Abby, in an attempt to encourage me out of my current worry/stress induced slump, told me 10 things that I should be thankful for. And as she said, they are not in order because that would take too much brain power. (It was midnight and I hadn’t been able to sleep) So here goes.

1) Mike. I have a wonderful young man who is in love with me and who’ll be home in LESS THAN A WEEK. In Abby’s words, less is a beautiful word to be able to put in front of week.

2) My job. I have a great job that I enjoy with bosses that value me and that pays me more than adequately.

3) A roof over my head, and the knowledge that I’d never have to do without one.

4) A family that although is somewhat non-traditional is always there for one another.

5) I have my physical health.

6) 3 fabulous roommates who love and support me.

7) I have intelligence and reason. Or at least Abby says I do ;).

8 ) I have scars, both physical and emotional that show that I’m a survivor and that is a cause for hope.

9) I have a cat and cats are cute.

10) I can dance. I have something in my life that can bring me great joy.

So what are your ten? Seriously, if you read this, no matter how you happened this way, I encourage you to comment with then things you are grateful for in your life. What fun!


Interview IV

9 05 2007

First of all I want to say it’s really hard to be satisfied with these answers because the questions were so amazing and thought provoking!  Thankyou so much for the challenge Mel.

1. In answer to Flutter’s question about the most important thing about you, you replied, “when I was 9 my parents and I moved to Zambia.” Wow! What are some of your best or most vivid memories of that time and place?
There are so many!  Like the time that my dad killed a spitting cobra that almost attacked my mom by throwing a hammer at it and hitting it in the head.  Or the way the world looks at night when there’s no artificial light for kilometers and kilometers in all directions.  Or going swimming on horseback and learning to jump at the tiny British expatriate school that I attended for a few months.  Or the first time I saw the mist and heard the roar of Victoria Falls.  Or being charged by a rino when my dad drove too close.  Or when a couple of my friends were almost run over by a runaway ox and cart at the little play set by my house.  Or my mom crying because we were told by the mission board back home that we had to leave the country in two weeks (this was later retracted, but we had originally planed to stay for 3 years and only stayed for 2)  Some time I should do a series of stories from those two years.  That would be good blogging fodder.

2. In your post to the person who found you through the broken engagement search, you said this: “I had to relearn to value myself as an individual,” and you also said this: “I made strong commitments to myself about maintaining my self worth and independence.” How do you feel you are doing with these self-affirming actions these days? Has a new relationship posed any challenges for you in still making sure to meet those goals for yourself?

It’s a daily struggle.  I think these are areas that will take continued growth and attention for the rest of my life.  But I’ve made huge strides.  Granted I had a long way to travel to even reach a healthy place, but it feels good to be able to look back and see how far I’ve come.  It’s not really something you can quantify, but I value and like myself much more than I used to.

Dating Mike has been a struggle in a lot of ways.  I have to fight the urge to rely on him for my self worth.  I have to fight the urge to plan my life around him.  Luckily, he doesn’t allow me to depend on him too much, and he has a way of being supportive while encouraging me to be the strongest person I can.  It’s hard road though because it’s a fight against my natural inclinations.
3. As a nanny, what’s the most important goal (besides “keep the child alive”)that you keep in mind, both at the start of each day and at the start of each new job?

That’s such a hard question for me because I’m a novice nanny.  I feel like I’ve been through a trial by fire the past 10 months.  I’ve had two different jobs with very different situations.  Nothing in my past or education has given me the insight or preparation for this career.  So until now I haven’t really had the luxury of having clear goals at the start of a job.  I’m still a little wet behind the ears, but now I would say the goal with each child is to guide them in becoming independent, joyful, articulate, socially and emotionally mature people.  To provide them with the challenges that will help them to grow at a leave where they are able to succeed.  This of course is easier said than done.  Just because a child has the capabilities necessary to tie their shoes doesn’t mean that they have the focus to complete the task or that it’s going to be easy for you to have the patience to wait for them to complete it.  It’s also my goal to find ways to make the family’s life easier.  Oh, and to give the kids as much love as possible.  That’s the easy part.

Day to day I try and keep them on a schedule of sorts.  It’s hard with babies, but everyone’s happier if there’s structure to the day.  I try to take them out every day, weather permitting.  I try and think of new things the girls can learn, whether that’s how to put the blocks in the bucket or how to not chew on books.

4. Just in the posts I’ve browsed, you mention singing, dancing, salsa lessons, “wheel throwing lessons,” whatever those are, fiddle lessons… do you think you will be a perennial student? In other words, do you agree with the notion that a person should continue to learn something new throughout their lives? Do you plan on doing so?

I definitely think I’ll be a student most of my life.  There are so many things I want to learn and be able to do.  I love the creative outlet of art, music and dance classes.  If I had more money and more energy I’d be involved in a lot more classes.  I am hoping to do some “wheel throwing lessons” this summer.  Wheel throwing is a part of ceramics and is how most hand made pottery is formed.

5. You said last summer, “I just want to feel like something I do really touches someone.” This isn’t a question, it’s a statement: I have really enjoyed reading your blog; it has touched me. While our lifepaths are not extremely similar, I can hear echoes of my own heart from before I settled into the life I have now in your words. I do hope you keep going; your honesty and freshness are very neat to read.

For Your Pruning

28 09 2004

music: Sausy Sailor by the Wailin’ Jennys~ very cool group, a new favorite www.thewailinjennys.com

When Love speaks to you, believe in him,

though his voice may shatter your dreams,

as the north wind lays waste the garden.

For even as love crowns you, so shall he crucify you.

Even as he is for your growth, so is he for your pruning.

Even as he ascends to your height and

caresses the tender branches that quiver in the sun,

so shall he descend to your roots

and shake them in their clinging to the earth.

~Kahlil Gibran

It’s been a wonderful day 🙂 nothing in particular, well….. I guess the fact that Jesse and I have been dating for 3 months ( I can’t believe that’s all it’s been!) has contributed to my mood, but it’s also because I feel more in control of my emotions and life in general. I taught Jesse to merengue tonight 🙂 fun times. C.S. Lewis is one of the best writers I’ve ever encountered, but I don’t agree with his thoughts on male headship (see Mere Christianity ch. christian marriage) eh, no one’s perfect 😉

Latin Dancing :)

25 09 2004

music: I believe I can fly

Last night was very enjoyable. I love dancing! There’s just something about it that makes me really happy. I taught like 4 guys how to merengue….that was fun. I also learned how to bachata. I had seen it before, but hadn’t ever had it explained to me. Ummm…. the movement of dance just comes so naturally to me. And it makes me happy, and it’s good exercise…. yeah for dancing.

16 09 2004

Music: Sarah McLachan~ Push

It’s amazing how music can effect you! How much a song can make you feel one way or another. This song is like that.

A cold wind is blowing out side. An occasionally flash of lightening draws my attention out the window. I love that I can sit at my computer and stare out my window at the same time. Fall is coming….. goodbye beautiful summer. I will never forget you and the joys that you brought into my life.

Dance class tonight was wonderful! Jesse picked it all up amazingly fast. I knew that he wouldn’t have trouble with the rhythm which is half the battle, but I was still impressed at how quietly he could do things and with consistency while still being able to mix it together. I think I’ve found a gem….. 😀

This afternoon Jess came and visited me and I enjoyed catching up with her a bit. I love that I’m just down the hall instead of two blocks away. I’m still counting my blessings in that area. Also, this evening I had just started to make myself tea when Bret and a freshman girl who was with him (grrr… for not remembering names…..) stopped by and had tea with me. Crystal dropped in a bit later and we all hung out chatting. Ummm…. 🙂 yay for dorm life. Only now it’s 1 and I’m still not in bed. Dang it for bad sleeping schedules!

By the way, have I mentioned yet how glad I am that I dropped TESOL back down to a minor? I think it’s definitely the right choice for me.

There was just a huge streak of lightning that took up the entire Western sky!!! It was beautiful. I love thunder storms. And with that I shall retire to my bed. Goodnight lovely world. May there be more joy in you tomorrow than there was today, and more the next and so on till He comes. May that be one of our life goals.