Wednesday, March 10, 2010

My heart just breaks

One of the teenage girls I work with a lot had a rough day today.  I have become very fond of this girl, she is extremely likable and just a sweetheart.  I hate to see her upset.  Tonight we were supposed to go out to dinner to celebrate some triumphs she has had in working on her therapeutic goals, and we still went to dinner but the tone was very different.  I cannot go into much detail of course, but she found out some news that just was like someone smacking her in the face with a frying pan.  It was horrible for her to hear, horrible timing by the person telling her, and just a bad situation all around.  I just hate when the kids I work with are treated poorly, they have had such a hard life already, they do not need any more crap in their lives.  Tonight as I rubbed her back as she cried I almost started crying with her because my heart truly does break every day for each of these kids.   Please keep this young girl in your prayers.

Monday, March 1, 2010

3 Cups of Tea Book Club

Today, we actually did have tea in our Three Cups of Tea book club I do with some of my youth, it was lovely:)

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Thought on peace

The below scripture and thought is from the Sojourner's website.  I felt it fit well with my emphasis on peace this Lenten season.

Pursue peace with everyone, and the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. Hebrews 12:14

Very often, people who are in conversation with servants, people who gain knowledge of the realities of life

Valerie Elverton Dixon, from her essay,"Servant Knowledge"

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Ashes, blues and peace

So I apologize to my readers, that I have taken so long to write on here. I feel like I have had writers block for awhile. I have written in my journal, but those are more personal writtings. Anyways a little reflection from today...ramblings as usual.

We had our ashe wednesday service tonight at chapel and it is always meaningful to perform various spiritual rituals with my kids. I love communion weeks and tonight was special as well. Taking the time with each kid and staff to have them kneel and then putting a sign of the cross on their heads and sending them forth with a blessing is meaningful. Rituals can be very moving.

I think I have the winter time blues...I just am in a rut, with my faith, with friends, with my life just seems to need a recharge. I am hoping I am just in need of a vacation...which I will be in North Carolina in a month! I need to see the ground, I am sick of snow! I want sunshine and flowers! I want to wear flip flops and go to the park. I want to have a picnic.
I do not do good with the unknown, I am a planner. I like to be in control. Currently I have no idea what my future holds. It is a big year of change. Change with my family, change in my life, change in jobs, change in location. Crazy times, but so much amazing future on the horizon, lots of joyous events!

As we enter into this season of Lent, I know the blues are not going to just magically leave, and the ashes on my head right now are a good reminder of that. But times are a changing and Easter and spring are on the horizon. And as my addition to my life during Lent I am going to try to add more peace to my life and others lives.  Tonight in celebration of Black History Month, I shared with the kids about Maya Angelou, the amazing poet, and shared her poem Amazing Peace.  I will share it below with you:
In our joy, we think we hear a whisper.

At first it is too soft. Then only half heard.

We listen carefully as it gathers strength.

We hear a sweetness.

The word is Peace.

It is loud now.

Louder than the explosion of bombs.

We tremble at the sound.

We are thrilled by its presence.

It is what we have hungered for.

Not just the absence of war. But true Peace.

A harmony of spirit, and comfort of courtesies.

Security for our beloveds and their beloveds.

We, Angels and Mortals, Believers and Nonbelievers,

Look heavenward and speak the word aloud.

Peace. We look at each other, then into ourselves,

And we say without shyness or apology or hesitation:

Peace, My Brother.

Peace, My Sister.

Peace, My Soul.

As I enter into this season of Lent, those last 3 lines stick with me, and will be my focus.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Being Present...

I'm not sure why I haven't written on here lately. I have been rather busy, and most recently sick with a bad case of the flu. I have been at a loss for words as well. Before my vacation, I was in much need of some rejuvenation. I got that on vacation. I came back and was thrown into a whirlwind of craziness of being back at work, with a new summer schedule, various staff out because of injuries, my boss leaving for a long vacation, lots of new kids, and then to top it off I had to get sick. It's been intense. Amidst all that I am struggling to find balance in my life, what things I feel are most important, things I need to keep sane, where I will seek my spiritual needs, basically trying to prioritize and re-evaluate.

This has been an amazing first "almost" year at Cunningham and here in Champaign-Urbana. But now that I am settled in, comes the joys of seeing what worked this year and what didn't, what I need more of, what I can do with out. Also the ever coming future is out there in the distance as well. I try not to think about it but I can't. I always have been a planner, note making, to-do list fanatic. I just like to know what's next, and what I need to do to get there. I have always wished I was more spontaneous, laid back, and go-with-the-flow, but that just hasn't been me.

I guess it is only fitting that I would find a guy, that is spontaneous, laid back and go-with-the-flow. Sometimes it drives me crazy, like when he randomly says, "We are having dinner with my mom in an hour", when I am out grocery shopping. But it's great at times, especially after a hard week, and at 11 at night he says, "let's go swimming!" or we just veg out and watch a movie (meaning he watches it and I fall asleep usually). I'm learning to embrace whatever very small spontaneous side of me there is. It's made for some relief from the stress and intensity of work.

This post is really random and babbling, but you know me! I'm all over the place with trying to figure out life, the next step, what I want to be when I grow up. But as I was looking at my journal and reflecting on the one thing I really wanted to do during these 2 years, I realized that over and over I said these things:

BE PRESENT IN THE present in my job, with my friends, with the community
Don't get caught up in the future and forget to embrace the present

So I guess I should take my own advice and try to be present in the moment. The present is good, (minus this stupid flu, but it made me slow down, so I guess its not too bad), the present is greater than I could have ever imagined, the present is teaching me so much each day, I am growing in the present.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Welcome to Durham

Welcome to Durham, of the coolest cities in my opinion. Here are some pictures from where my parents now reside. This is a picture from the roof of our parking deck, where you can see the lucky strike water tower. This used to be a tobacco town.
This is a view of the city, you can see my church sticking up in the distance!

Here it is, where my parents now live! It's on the 2nd floor in the blue building with yellow trim.

We live above a pharmacy. I love that my family are city dwellers now! And below is a view of the inside. It is really hard to show pictures of the inside you must come and see it, it is something you don't fully grasp until you enter inside. Needless to say I love this place!!! We leave tomorrow for the beach, but I am excited to walk to church in the morning and on Monday get some coffee down the street!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Salt Water for the Soul

In 5 days I leave for my vacation in the great state of North Carolina! And in 7 days I will be at the glorious beach, Emerald Isle. Some of you might be asking, where??? Well is is one of the many beautiful NC beaches. My family has been going here ever since before I was born and it has become one of those places you just can't stay away from. Last year we went to Sunset Beach and although it was beautiful, Emerald Isle holds a special place in my heart.
Maybe it's the tradition, maybe its the great bookstore they have there, maybe its all the memories that come up each time we arrive. I can't wait to see views like these, walking to the pier, sitting on the porch and looking out across the ocean.
I am in beach withdrawal and I have been excited about this vacation all year! I am excited to spend a week away in one of my favorite places with my wonderful family:) I also am realizing how much I need a vacation. To be honest I am tired and need some rejuvenation. It's been a hard winter/spring and I'm in need of some salt air, water and sand to do wonders for my soul. Yesterday I picked up some books for the trip, I got some new music off iTunes, and I ordered a new bathing suit. I think I am more than ready for this vacation. So in one week I will be walking out on a walkway to the beach just like this, and when I see that glorious ocean, I think my soul will be happy...