Sunday, November 27, 2011

the big 2-0

 Age has been a strange concept to me ever since I skipped third grade.  I've always felt like I was Kennedy's age because we have always done the same things and been at the same stage in life, or at least in my mind.  After I was able to reason with my brain and tell myself that I am indeed not Kennedy's age, I lump myself with my class's age.  But alas, this is also incorrect, so then I have to just accept the fact that I am the age I am and it's no big deal.  Tomorrow is my 20th birthday and that's weird to me.  This past year has been the year that I have had the most changes in the way I see the world and how I view myself in it.  The biggest thing that I have learned in this past year is the battle between faith and fear.  They can not co-exist.  It's so easy for me to hide behind my fear; fear of failure, fear of the future, and fear of the world.  While shooting hoops today, it hit me that this fear that I have is choking my potential.  Kaitlyn gave me the best advice in regards to basket ball.  She said that I needed to do two things: pretend like no one is in my way and keep shooting after I get blocked once or twice.  That girl is the best.

 with Jess in Amman :)  Isn't he handsome?
Boy that is the best, Jesse.  Jesse has taught me so much about what it means to have faith.  Being away from him has been painful this semester.  Being in Jerusalem has been completely life changing.  I am the 1%.  I have no reason to not be happy, confidant, and successful.  I am so grateful for the opportunity that I have had to grow and learn how to overcome fear through faith.

On a side note, here is my birthday gift to you all...finally a few pictures from the trip thus far!
At the pools of bethesda with Allyson and Whitney
in turkey with elyse
Inside Hagia Sofia with my group
sack lunches....
In a water/hampsterwheel on a field trip
Under the center with none other than whitney
candid in turkey
enjoying my first of 2 magnum bars
at the Harem in Turkey

Monday, November 14, 2011


I'm in Galilee for the next 10 days and thrilled to be here!  I will try and write a little bit about what I'm doing while we are here.  
Today, we went to nazareth and it was so beautiful!  St. Mary's and St. Joseph's was incredible!  It almost made me want to be catholic. ;)
We also went up to the cliffs by Galilee and it was beautiful.  Lizzy and I commented that it looked just like Pride and Prejudice.
Everything is very peaceful and totally beautiful.  I'm so grateful to learn here.  And by learn, I mean study the Bible like crazy!  I have a paper to write for tomorrow and a midterm tomorrow that I need to go and cram study for. :)

p.s. in case you were wondering, Jesse and I are getting married in exactly 46 days!  woot!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Basketball and Good Deeds

Who knew?  Who knew basketball is so fun?  The center has a no-boys basketball league and our team just finished our first game...and we won by one point.  Our team consists of Kaitlyn, Wendy, Whitney, Andi and me.  Obviously, a great combination.  Not going to lie, it was a freakin blast and I am seriously wanting to develop some skills.  Speaking of skills, apparently, home-girl Katie Cutler is really good at bocce ball and won $400 in a tournament.  I aspire to have skills like that. :)

More importantly, today we visited Yad Vashim, which is the Holocaust Memorial and Museum in Israel.  It was an extremely touching and humbling experience to learn about the horors that took place less than a hundred years ago.  As I went through, I just kept thinking about things that I know that are going on right now and wondering what am I going to do about it. 

I don't want to lecture any of you wonderful, fantastic readers, but what things are going on around you are you choosing to ignore?  Being engaged to the wonderful man Jesse Thomas has been life changing to me.  He has taught me so much about what is going on in the world, our country, and locally.  If anyone had a heart of gold, it's that guy.  Reason  number 808,298 why I fell in love with him was seeing him with the people he taught on his mission (luckily, he was called to Salt Lake City, which obviously is the best mission in the world).  He met and fell in love with so many different people from all walks of life.  Something that I didn't know was that Salt Lake City is a refugee city and is host to thousands of refugees that could use a little help.  Jess and I are hoping to be able and work with an organization next semester to help them get used to the city and make sure that they are safe.  If you too would like to get involved, or just learn a little bit more about the issue in Salt Lake, click here

Now, go do the right thing.