Tuesday, April 29, 2008

australia baby!

yesterday, rob and i agreed that after a busy weekend of checking people out and saying many good-byes we were tired, feeling a little anxious about taking trips to foreign countries, and wanting sleep.

but after a day of getting ready and sleeping in my own bed, i feel more ready, excited and anticipating an amazing trip to australia tomorrow!

i am required to keep a journal on the trip and plan to enter my thoughts when i have access to a computer, whether that is in australia or when i get back on may 18th. i am looking forward to some adventures!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

warm fuzzies

our last staff meeting has come and gone.
i hate to think that we're done. i know from my end that there will still be final hugs and good-byes before i leave campus, but we won't all be together anymore. ouch. even writing that makes me sad.

at our last one-on-one, martha and i talked about how its easy to protect yourself from getting hurt, from feeling pain when good-byes come. holding back on loving others might keep you from hurting, but it also keeps you from the joy, the blessing, the gift of being in relationship with others. during our conversation she used the phrase, "love like it won't hurt."
last night made realize that i didn't hold back at all with my staff. i loved quickly and deeply. although i'm hurting inside, i wouldn't take back anything from this year.

aside from looking at pictures, eating candy, laughing, presenting martha with her ipod, receiving year-end awards + gifts and taking a final group picture, we finished the year off with "warm fuzzies."
last year, we affirmed each other through written notes.
this year, we verbally affirmed each other, with the limit of three people per turn.
i think verbally telling someone exactly what they mean to you is one of the best, hardest, meaningful and beautiful things i've experienced. its difficult to receive praise sometimes, but i think it was what we needed. i felt like i had things to say to each of these lovely people. carrie, sarah, namky and kyle (yes, i got four) all spoke to me. by the end of it, i felt like i was going to melt into a puddle of tears. somehow i held it in until kyle drove me home and gave me part 2 of "what i love about alison." i made it to my front door before i let the tears come.

these fourteen people were the best part of my year. i'm glad i loved like it wouldn't hurt, but it still hurts. hold me, Jesus.

looking ahead

i feel a little giddy thinking about breakfast for dinner last night.
martha and i hosted one last get-together for next year's staff.
i think over half of our staff came.
i loved watching them interact with each other. i loved laughing with them. they're a special bunch.

with the end coming so soon, i feel like God's given me such a gift in the glimpses of what is to come in the days ahead. it doesn't take away the hurt of saying good-bye to other dear friends, but i think he knew i needed the hope of next year as i squeeze my eyes tight to keep the tears from falling.
i can't help but thank Jesus for the beautiful people he keeps bringing into my life, even if my heart aches a bit.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

calamity jane's

its hard to believe the year-end res. life party has come and gone a second time for me-
fries dipped in milkshakes.
loving teasing.
impish looks.

i can hardly stand the thought of saying good-bye.
but its not long now...

i'm working on just savoring this moment and being thankful for what we've had.
i'm so blessed by these beautiful, dear people in my life.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

guns, tanks + airplanes

i feel like i've had so many new experiences in the past few weeks.
i went to my first gun show.
i was introduced to planes in a more extensive way than ever before through a visit to the evergreen aviation and space museum.
i've been pleasantly surprised to really enjoy learning about things i didn't ever expect to be interested in. but rob has been a good teacher. one thing i like about him is that even when i am relatively (or completely) ignorant about something, he doesn't make me feel stupid. he just enlightens me and gently teaches me about things i haven't had much experience with.

earth day

what a gift creation is! i love the new seasons and being surprised by familiar and beautiful sights. i was walking to the library this week and happened to have my camera with me and was able to capture the dogwood and apple blossoms.
rob and i were talking the other day about how some of the things in creation are simply there FOR US. i feel like some of the beautiful flowers i've gotten to enjoy the past few days are some of these things. they don't really have much purpose except for us to enjoy. thanks, God. i am continually amazed by your gifts to me.

Monday, April 21, 2008


molly came to visit today! it was so good to finally give her a hug after her months of travels. with my room-mates making their own plans for next year, it was nice to see my own future room-mate and dream about next year. we looked at pictures from her adventures for a few hours and toured cherie's apartment. this girl makes me laugh and refreshes my spirit. i am pretty sure that next year is going to be a blast.

a magical evening

after dressing up and taking my room-mates' advice on which sweater to wear, it was time to begin the evening.

rob asked me a few times throughout the evening if i was having fun, and i hope i was as enthusiastic in my responses as i felt inside...

dinner was delicious. my date looked quite handsome in his tux. my corsage smelled lovely. laughter was plentiful. i'm developing a liking for pick-up trucks. the music was fun. the dancing was a bit on the ridiculous side, but i think we both were about equal in our levels of dancing talent. and our dancing lessons were quite useless with the type of music that was played. =) we went to starbucks after the dance and met up with the rest of our group: kristen, chris, cherie, tj, meagan and joel. cherie began to yawn and the crowd began to disperse. but our evening wasn't complete without watching x-men 3 in rob's truck (due to floor hours.)

i truly had a magical evening.

getting fancified

although i'd already managed to have two fun events for the day, my sunday was just getting started. i wore my "long black swishy dress" but not before i'd gotten pretty.
i curled my hair and had asked carrie to help me make it look lovely.
she worked magic. as she adjusted my mound of hair, she kept giving me warnings of what it might look like. i got a little nervous, but that all disappeared when i stepped in front of the mirror. i dubbed her my fairy godmother for the evening.

birthday girl

the next part of my sunday included a visit to the olive garden to celebrate jodi's birthday. its nice to know i'll get to be with her in australia for her actual birthday, but friends + food in the USA was very fun. =)


AAC initiation started a very busy sunday. the current AACs made the upcoming AACs breakfast, which was quite delicious. i'm really excited at the prospect of spending next year working with lisa, abby, denae and scotty. i didn't expect to laugh quite so much. and if yesterday morning was any indication, these people will bless my life. i can't help but smile when i think about it.