Saturday, August 15, 2009

coming home.

so sorry i havent written in days [weeks...] but life is moving fast. we'll be leaving castaway club wednesday morning. well, most of us; steph left wednesday, lindsey annerino left friday, christine leaves tomorrow (sunday) and the rest leave wednesday.

at the beginning of the summer i would have never expected that i would be so sad to leave. from being in a place where i couldnt believe i made this decision; a place where i felt lonely and not a part of the group to how i feel now. sitting in the west wing with everyone, people chatting, some sleeping, some on computers... and being fully and wonderfully content. feeling like these people are my friends, my family. to LIVE with people, work with people, share with them for 3 months is a wonderfully challenging and yet rewarding and growing experience.

i have learned so much from everyone, and have learned both who i do and who i do not want to be. i have learned waht it means to live and to love in a different way, and to be understanding of differences, failures, shortcomings, and strengths.

these people have been so incredible that i wouldnt pick a different or better intern group -- good or bad.

so for those that supported me when i was struggling in the beginning... thank you. this has truely been an experience that i wouldnt change for anything.

see you next week, mitten. i cant wait to be home. but... really... i also can wait. i want to be here while also being there.

can i?

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

love everyone; all the time.

read this tonight about the PA shooting at the gym, and it was just suuuuch a clear plea to me to LOVE everyone, pay ATTENTION to people.

you walk by people -- you see them [or else you'd run into them].... but do you LOOK at them? do you acknowledge them? do you really SEE them?

there is a link in the article to read the diary of the guy.... broke my heart. and in the end to see that he has some sort of faith, and the knowledge that salvation is not built on works.... that he feels and knows and articulates the exclusion he feels and wants to know WHY -- that he wants to matter, to be loved, to be noticed....

love: notice: care: say hello to a stranger.

because this is not how its suppose to be -
this is NOT shalom.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

session three... excuse me, what?

third session started today. and again i say it; excuse me, what? so weird to think that 2 years ago i was the new summer staffer in the bakery, not knowing what i was doing, and now im training someone to do that very thing. my new summer staffer, melanie, is great. im excited to see how we work together and see how things work out.

side bar, the boys are OBSESSED with settlers of catan. i feel like i am back in the days of hekman, james regan, timotei, etc playing it all the time at every social function for YL at home. i rejected it then, and i reject it now.

its kind of hard to update right now. lets see. the last week was ok... it was a struggle to feel like it was still week 2 in the bakery when in actuality it was week 4. i felt like i was still teaching, and thats hard to do when you feel like you've been doing that for 3 weeks already (oh, wait, i have.) but, last session is over and we're onto the next session.

its a very weird to be here now. we have 11 weeks behind us, and i feel like everyone is tired. its hard to show grace at this point in a lot of different ways; to each other, summer staff and work crew, a new assigned team... i just hope that we are able to give everyone a chance and enjoy the last 3 weeks of people being here and enjoy getting to know 100 new names. we have a very diverse group this session, vs the essentially all white last two sessions, and im excited for that. the diversity makes it feel a bit more like ann arbor, and that is nice.

i am also getting excited to come home, while still enjoying being here. i am excited to be looking for jobs, even though its quite scary. i've applied for 2 this week, both in DC. im not really thinking about location too much; beggers cant be choosers. i will think about the distance aspect if the opportunity presents itself.

im excited to go downtown, see friends, see my parents, and see my josh. yet - while all these things are true, i am excited to invest for the last few weeks and really try and make the most of these people and this experience.

yesterday on my day off i hung out with christine mostly; we went to sunflower hill (a coffee shop) and she worked on her support letters (she's going to be a year-long intern at Sharptop in GA) and i did some e-mails and finished a coverletter. then we went to boeke's (the former waterfront director that christine knows well) and i helped her stuff her support letters while watching everybody loves raymond. it was a great day to just spend with her doing menial tasks but having good company. came back and did intros with the new summer staff/work crew, went out on the new boat to break it in a bit, and then joey, christine and lindsey bray and i went to eat. we ended up at perkins and shared a lot of laughs, it was really fun. a great day off in my book.

now off to do a few things solo.... im excited for some alone time :) ive realized how precious it is and how much i need it.

Monday, July 20, 2009

life is at its best in the west wing..... or flying cloud.

quick post, since i have no business posting.

kate west has been re-located to the flying cloud (my room), because her room is now the issolation room for those with H1N1 type symptoms. its been great. except she is way more responsible with going to bed than i am. i should be asleep. she is. i am not. shes great and im glad she is my bunk mate.

i went parasailing again tonight, this time with alicia, and it was awesome. she was in issolation for H1N1, but she feels fine. hopefully i didnt contract it. if i did.... love you all.

tonight after work crew visits (which really shouldnt be stressful but somehow always are) came up to the intern lounge and did the orange pop taste challenge (sunkist beat slice and fanta in all races) with jose, mads, jj and joe. we just laughed and told stories...... those are my favorite times being here. i often feel really left out of great experiences, especially in the camper realm, since i never see them. so i miss out on great experiences, like the ones that people are going to have with capernum kids (kids here with special needs). but those are the times, with the interns (...and property staff...) that i love most - relaxing, talking, growing, and sharing life.

days like these make me want more time here.... make me want more time to go deeper and have evenings like this.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

ann arbor: i miss you.

nothing much to say..... the days are starting to run into each other.

i simultaneously feel like i havent been here long and that ive been here an eternity, but the fact remains that i'll be home in about a month.

i struggle with people's use (including myself) of the word "intentional."

definition: of or pertaining to intention or purpose.
definition of "intention": an act or instance of determining mentally upon some action or result.

ok. so we (interns) have had, at various times i think, discussed being "intentional" with each other, meaning getting to know each other. i have recently began to question the INTENT behind it though.

is it because that's what we're SUPPOSED to do? is it because thats what people say we should do, or Greg recommends? Are these last 4 weeks truely going to be the best? I don't know. Because i think there is a lot of confusion on the INTENT of our intentionality. i think its bull that we extend ourselves to others to get to know them if we arent really interested in knowing them. so i guess the question is, do i really want to know these people, and why.

i think that this whole experience has been different than i expected. its been a lot harder than i thought in the deep community that is promoted aspect. i guess it has been a while since i've had to get to know people, ask questions, seek out who they are at the core, and maybe i'm out of practice. perhaps i havent done that in a while at home because i was content with the community i was a part of. but now i have been put into a different community and it INVOLVES effort. so maybe that was just my own fault initially.

i think that the core of it as i said before is just WHY do you want to get to know people. and if its because you "should" -- then dont. i think thats bullshit. i think there is so much to learn from people in a situation like this, and there is too much comfort in surface relationships and too much fear in going deep. and maybe its not even fear -- maybe its just content. content in the life you lead, the friends you have, etc. and thats fine. but i guess i just keep going back to this Henry Ford quote that some girl wrote in her paper in my PS 327: Community Organizing with Greg Markus, the best professor ever to walk the campus of the unversity of michigan (sorry ralph lovers) -- that if you would have asked someone around 1900 how to get from point A to point B faster, they would have said build a faster carriage. they wouldnt have said "build a model T, duh." it took trying sometohing new and being willing to take a risk.

and maybe thats to broad of a step or to wide of a leap, from Ford to detroit lakes, but, thats ok.because really.... i think it is all about trying new things and taking risks (which i am often, and i'll be the FIRST to admit, scared to take.)

i want to learn from people, i want to have relationships. i'd love to know who my friends will be in 10 years. id love for it to be some of these people. and maybe thats just me, and maybe its nieve.

but i want i want i want, i need i need i need, gimme gimme gimme.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

oh hello.

sorry it has been a while since my last post of substance (not that talking about Joe Lindgaard isnt substantial...). a lot has been going on, and ... well.... i dont know. just havent had time to type.

the last time i wrote was week 4 of 1st session. it is now the middle of week 2 of 2nd session. courtney has left (much to my dismay) and my new summer staffer's name is Bronaugh (pronounced Bro-nah). She's from Ireland. Not "Oh, I moved here 6 years ago but I'm originally from Ireland" but like 2 weeks ago she was in ireland, and in 2 weeks she'll be back in Ireland. Things are going ok. She is pretty quiet and that makes conversation difficult. I am also learning new ways f leading and teaching, as she has been a little slower to pick up on the routine of htings. Not to mention, she is not used to our unit ofmeasure so that slows things down, too. But, we are still getting our work done. The men this session is a bit different. I no longer have 2 long days, 1 medium day, and 3 short days but now 6 days that are all pretty much the same legth. which, has its pro's and cons. I get ode about the same time each day, but now no really hsort days anymore.

Saturday in the evening all the interns went out on the boat to watch firewoks. we had some lovely snacks and fun times. we even swam afterwards. here are a few pictures:

i was excited to try out the fireworks setting on my camera. it was a fail. this is on the underwater setting. go figure.

everyone! (except courtney and katya)
i just love it.

what else. last week Wednesday i felt really gross. i took 3 naps, woke up to serve dessert at camper dinner, and went back to bed at 9pm. i had a headache and i felt like i was going to throw up. never a good combination. but i slept it off and felt fine the next day.

i now have 2 braces for my carple tunnel infested wrists, which i wear only at night. but, at some point in the night, i am still asleep and get annoyed with the left one and rip it off, because its on the floor every morning.

community stuff is ok.... I feel like we kind of all put on a good face of "yeah this is great" but we arent really digging deep with each other. i dont really know what the answer for that is, except for reaching out to people when they reach out to you, and have everyone be intentional about that. its so easy to just do our jobs and sit around the lounge after rather than trying to have a meaningful conversation with someone or at least hear more about their story.

we talked about that last friday night (sorry, a bit out of order) when jimmy, bj, jose, mads and i went to go see "away we go". it was a really, really great film and afterwards we went to kroll's (a diner in fargo.... oh, yeah, we had to go to fargo to see it.) we had great conversation spurred by the great maddie deegan who i feel like always asks great questions. we talked a lot about this community stuff and how we can be actively working toward making it everything it can be.

JJ alberhasky is here this week, and doing special music which is innnnncredible. the concert is tomorrow night and i hope/expect JJ and Jose to each record it in their mediums (sound and film, respectively.)

oh, and to go back again, washtenaw county was here last week. i think i mentioned that at some point, but let me expand.

so first, they were the first group to get here and a cried when the bus arrived. i had been saying i was going to cry, but i didnt think i actually would. i got to spend some one-on-one time with a few leaders (i felt like time was so crunched and i didnt want to be taking away time that people could be spending with kids) and it was soooo good for my heart. to talk about things and compare them to the past and have people know what that means. for people to know my heart and know my hurts was so great.

but, at the same time, i realized the value of this experience here with interns because i have a chance for NEW people to know my heart and hurts, and maybe even people that would have a different insight on them than i would, or people from home would. its just hard because things like that dont always come up in casual conversation and its not an easy thing to be like "hey, heres my crap and why i'm broken, wanna listen?"

speaking of being broken. that has been the theme of bob (davidson)'s talk this week, or at least what i've seen -- being broken, and how we are all broken. last night bob showed a slideshow of a bunch of post-secret type cards that kids had made in cabin time and so many of them were about feeling like they werent enough, which is something i have struggled a lot with and a good friend of mine has constantly tried to combat with telling me "would you shut up -- you are enough, you are God's chosen, His beloved!" It has lead me to wondering how my own experiences can translate into helping and loving kids (whether in YL or not) because of that commonhood of a struggle i have had and continue to battle.

2 weeks ago, there was a post on "the wall" (a wall that the 1st speaker, Annie, had and now Bob has too, which provides an opportunity for kids to draw or write a response to the week and post it on the wall) that i feel like is fitting to my life, an this story and sharing:

this was after opera, where they used a song with that lyric (thats not my name, thats not my name) and i thought it was just very cool.

anyways, now my fingers are tired.

Monday, July 6, 2009


couldnt ann arbor be closer to detroit lakes? i mean, its BASICALLY detroit, right? i actually learned it used to be called Detroit but that Detroit, MI and Detroit, MN were too similar and mail went the wrong place so someone had to switch (and it wasnt going to be the big daddy, clearly.)

i miss you. and if you are reading this, i probably mean you. i miss your familiarity and your knowledge of me and my heart. washco here last week was GREAT -- now everyone just take shifts and come every 4 days, and it'll be great :)