Sunday, November 23, 2008

Identity Crisis

Once again I am stuck. Do I want to do this? Do I want to follow through on what I have started?

No, I am not talking about leaving my job. While I definitely do have those days (there is that honesty thing!), right now is not one of them. This fall I struggled with moving on from Trail's End for awhile, but one day God just got me over it. And since then, I am content. Whenever God takes me somewhere else I will go. Until then, well, here I stay.

But I digress. Back to the original point of this post. School. Specifically do I continue the course that I have set for myself (and that I felt God leading me on?). This fall I signed up to finish my Bachelor's Degree (I have my A.A. in Liberal Arts - which means "generals") and started taking my first class. However, I am not sold on my degree choice. At all.

This fall I have been doing as much thinking as time allows and I have decided that I really am more of a people person. Which is not exactly a shocking revelation coming from a secretary. But right now I am working on a degree in Business. Yes, I know business deals with people. Yes, I know business is practical. Yes, I know that one of the reasons that I followed this was to have a degree that would be flexible.

But, shouldn't I enjoy some part of school? Shouldn't I be understanding more of what I am learning and why it is important? Since I am going back to school after time off, shouldn't I be more excited? Shouldn't I not hate it with almost every fiber of my being? Shouldn't I be following a course that doesn't make me a constant whiner?

Or should I just grow up? Should I just realize that college is hard and it is stretching me for a reason?

The other thing that I am struggling with is finances. I really really really REALLY wanted to do these two years without student loans. (oh and by two years, I meant eight. apparently, at the rate I am working through my classes, I will finish my B.S. in 2016. now that's something to look forward to!!) But that is not possible. So, what do I do? Find a cheaper school? Perhaps consider that God is calling me into traditional school where I would be eligible for more financial aid and scholarship? But, that would involve leaving Trail's End.

Oh, I don't know what to do!! My first class ends in a couple of weeks, but the good news is that my next class wouldn't start until January. So I have a couple of weeks to make a decisions.


Friday, November 21, 2008

I am a huge blog addict. My Google Reader is filled with subscription after subscription - many of people I don't know. I love the willingness of people to be real, to be vulnerable, to let others in.

A lesson I myself perhaps need to learn.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

My trip to here, there and a little bit of everywhere!

On the morning of October 10th I packed up and headed home (to Minnesota) for a bit of a sabbatical. About 3 1/2 weeks worth. It was a time of sharing, seeing people, rejuvenation, traveling and exhaustion.

I started out by speaking on Sunday the12th at the Naz in Fergus Falls. It was good to be back!

The next day(Monday) Mom and I took off and flew to Colorado. The main reason I came home when I did was so that we could celebrate mom's birthday. So, to make it special, we headed off to see my oldest big brother and family in Colorado.

On Tuesday we went to Colorado Springs and played tourist.(the kids stayed with their other grandma). We went to Garden of the Gods, the top of Pikes Peak and toured Focus on the Family. We ended with a delicious supper at Sonic.

(Can I even tell you how much I love their Cherry Limeades? They are AMAZING. Mind-blowing really.)

(the four of us at the Garden of the Gods)

(me and the birthday girl!)

Mom had to leave on Wednesday but I was able to stay until Friday. It was a time of chilling out and relaxing with the fam. We played the Wii, went shopping, watched cartoons and played a lot of Uno Spin. Before I headed home, Julie and the kids and I went to the park and got some shots of Aunt Rachel with her favoritist niece and nephew.

(Aunt Rachel, Nephew Joshua and Niece Sarah)

The next Sunday I shared my ministry at Good Shepherd, which is the church I grew up in. Every time I come home I love this church more and more. It is so comforting to come home!

Right after church I headed down to the Twin Cities for a recruiting/seeing as many people as I possibly could trip. I started out with hanging out with these guys:

(Phil and Travis love Lamposts!)

(the city view from the Witch's Hat)

The next morning I did my first ever recruiting for Trail's End. I went to AFLBS and did a lot of sitting. There was some interest, which is always encouraging. Even if we get one more staff member it's worth it!

From Plymouth I headed down to Mankato to see my Michelle. I hadn't seen her since her wedding in December so it was great to catch up! We had an old-fashioned sleepover and it was a lot of fun!

The next morning she headed to class and I head back to the Twin Cities. I met my friend Phil for breakfast at IHOP and then we wandered around the Mall of America for awhile. We soon found our favorite place in the WHOLE WORLD : Legoland!

(Phil and Rachel at Legoland)

Then I headed over to my friend Lisa's. It had been Christmas since I had seen her and her adorable family and we had a lot of fun playing Scrabble, going thrift store shopping, watching a movie, and playing with her little boy.
Sadly, this was a pictureless visit.

After spending the night with her and enjoying breakfast bagels with her and her father, I went over to Roseville and had coffee with my friend Dan. From there I camped out at coffee shops and did some homework before meeting up with my dear Lindsay. We had a yummy supper at Chipotle (it's a good thing I don't live near one - I would be there WAY too much!) and then I did more homework while she led a Bible Study. The night was finished by watching Step Up and chatting the night away.

My trip to the Cities finished with breakfast with my childhood friend Schyler and then more homework! After taking advantage of free Wi-Fi and lots of coffee I headed back to Fergus and life there.

That weekend was Crony Weekend. I adore these three girls and so enjoy our time we spend together. With jobs, living in Montana, husbands, boyfriends and children (the first two apply to me ... the last three are more their scene) we don't get a chance to have the typical girl's weekend like we used to do in high school. But we were able to work it out for the most part and were able to spend the majority of the whole weekend together. It was glorious!!

Friday night was traditional junk food, movies, talking, and giggling. Saturday there was some shopping, more eating, more hanging out and then an adventure for three of us. In high school we stumbled upon a sign that pointed us in the direction of Doran. It took us two tries, but we finally succeeded. Since then, for nostalgias sake, we head back that way now and then. Oddly enough, this is the first time we have taken any pictures!

(Rachel, Bethany and Karla in Doran)

After we got back to Fergus (via the looooong way around and some detours), we did some person changes and settled down for another movie. This time Karla's boyfriend joined us and we conned him into doing a photo shoot. Sadly enough we didn't get one of all four of us.

(Karla, Rondi and Rachel)

The next morning I shared the ministry of Trail's End at Woodland Baptist. It was the first time I had been to that church and really enjoyed the friendliness of the people.

That week was a week of seeing people. I was able to connect with almost everyone I wanted to see and it was so good to see who I got to see!!

One night I met up with these three girls:

(Ashley, Tia and Rachel)

These girls were my childhood best friends and we had a blast catching up! We commandeered a table at Applebees for 4 1/2 hours and spent a lot of time laughing. I'm excited to come home again in January for Ashley's wedding!

My last big trip was that weekend. Through recruiting, deputizing and seeing friends, I was able to see a lot of Northern Minnesota I had never seen before. It's so gorgeous up there!

I started out my time in Bemidji at Oak Hills Christian college. There was one guy who was very interested and even started to fill out his application. Hopefully I will see that come across my desk soon!!

From Bemidji I headed west to Fosston. My friend Nickie recently moved up there and I loved the chance to spend time with her! It was so fun! We did what all normal 24 yr olds do on Halloween - went trick or treating. Ok, maybe not all normal ones. Or even most of them. But we were all dressed up and had no place to go and I had never been. So we scored some sweet candy and got some great exercise!

(The Tooth Fairy and The Pirate)

(Rachel and Nickie)

After turning back into normal people we curled up with some movies and junk food. What a great night! The next morning we headed over to the Fosston craft show and scored some sweet stuff. We had a great afternoon of hanging out and talking.

From there I headed up the road to International Falls. I met up with two couples I met through camp(they come out for our 50 mile trail ride every fall) and had supper. It was a lot of fun to catch up with them and hear about their news. One of them is the author of the 2009 American Girl series, which I find very cool. Those were some of my favorite books when I was young!

After staying with one of the couples, I headed back down the road and spoke at my last church of the group, Little Fork Baptist. One of my friends from Montana is the one who connected me with this church and I was glad she did! I had a great time sharing the ministry of Trail's End at the youth Sunday school and again in church.

Once the potluck was over, I packed up and got back into my faithful traveling companion, Walter (mom's car). The road was beckoning and we were ready! We had an engagement back in Fergus and were not willing to let it slide! That night Good Shepherd was hosting "A Day Around the World", where they were focusing on different mission activities. I was honored to be asked to represent the US. It was a lot of fun to see everyone's display and learn more about the different ministries and eat yummy food!

That just left one last day in Fergus Falls before packing up Petunia (Elisha's car) and heading back to Montana on Tuesday. We had a nice trip back, taking some time to do some shopping in Bismarck and Dickinson, before getting back in time for me to vote.

Since then, I have been settling back into life in Montana and enjoyed catching up with everyone.