Wednesday, August 31, 2011

#forkathy #itdoesntgetmuchbetter #cantstopsmiling #forever friends

Wolf Shirt Wednesday lives on. All the cool kids, like Molly Henry, are doing it. At least 8 kids in my school were wearing them today. 

Last week I got to hang out with Mel and CILT girls at Noodles. This week I got to hang out with Session 3 girls for dinner and then to watch Kath's soccer game. Right when we got there Olivia Odle spotted my wolf shirt, then our potholder headbands, and then realized it was her camp friends. She ran to hug us and turned around to get her own potholder headband out of her backpack.

Kelsey, Maddie, Haley and Molly are really good friends. They made posters for Kathy, screamed her name every time she got close to the ball, and jumped up and down like they were cheering for the CILTs on Friday night sports.

The soccer field was the most grass I've been around since Main Field so we had to take a jumping picture. We took this in one try-- Olivia, mad picture taking skills. Girls, mad jumping in unison skills.

Maddie is really good at cartwheels and Kathy is a soccer MVP.

During half-time (do you call it half-time in soccer?) we did some camp move dancing...

some CILT cheer screaming...

some group photo taking...

Yesterday, a different camper told me, "I really miss camp tonight. Like more than normal," and I thought, "Yes, me too." Sometimes you just need to be around people that make you laugh and are proud to wear potholder headbands and don't think wolf shirts are weird and cheer really loud for their friends even if people look at them strangely and do cartwheels just because they can. I'm glad I got to bring camp to the real world with these girls tonight.

And when the game was over we even got to talk to soccer all-star Kathleen for a minute before she had to peace out to go start on homework.  My high of the day was easily the time I spent with these girls tonight. No question.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


Welcome back to Young Life club everyone. We know how to start things off with a bang.

There were boys belting out Taylor Swift, two cardboard gnomes running around, kids spitting crickets and buckets of paint being dumped.

At a break in the midst of the craziness Jake shared about creation and how we were beautifully and wonderfully created. We believe that where we came from matters. We believe that our death matters and that we will spend eternity with Christ. So if our past matters and if our future matters, then our lives right now, in the day to day must matter too. We love a God that is alive and answering prayers and working in our lives every single day.

In a battle Braveheart would be proud of, we had a paint war to end all paint wars.
"They may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!"

"Every man dies, but not every man lives."
Tonight we lived well. We laughed and screamed and ran and jumped and dodged.

I stopped searching for more paint to throw for a second and looked around the field. It was a beautiful sight of organized, brilliant, neon chaos of kids loving life. 

Monday, August 29, 2011

think about such things.

I saw love all over the place today.

Encounter One: When I got to my classroom door Haleigh was there waiting for me with a surprise. She went to Kentucky this weekend on a cheer leading trip. While shopping she ran across a booth that sold animal shirts. You guessed it-- she got me a wolf shirt. And it may not seem like love to you, but I think that this 7th grade girl taking the time to get me a wolf shirt is just so precious.

Encounter Two: Grace accidentally threw away her retainer at lunch today. She realized it on the way back to class and I took her back to the cafeteria to find it. We talked to a janitor and said, "This is Grace, she just threw away her retainer on accident." I expected him to be frustrated or annoyed, because who wants to go dig through barrels of trash? But he didn't even complain once. He said with a smile, "You wouldn't believe how many of these we have to dig out," and then walked over to get us each a pair of gloves. He pulled the trash cans outside and showed us what to do. We had to dig through the stinky trash piece by piece to find this clear retainer. I like to think that I'm not easily grossed out but I have developed this horrible gag reflex. I had to leave pretty quickly because I thought I would get sick, but the janitor and Grace stayed down there until they found it.

Encounter Three: To make my day easier and cut down on my time in the car, Jenna invited me to hang out at her house between school and Young Life. It was such a blessing today to be able to sit down for over an hour. I should do that more often. She let me make peanut butter toast for an after school snack. I almost fell asleep while starting to read the new "The Power of Six."

Encounter Four: My friend Sophie from Hope College is living an incredible story of love right now. I can't stop thinking about her and I can't quite wrap my mind around it. If you've got a couple minutes you've got to read Sophie's story.

Encounter Five: We always sing to start off Campaigners and I love that week after week these kids are so excited to sing. Week after week I am so excited to sing. Week after week God is showing up in these songs.

Everlasting, Your light will shine when all else fades
Never ending, Your glory goes beyond all fame
And the cry of my heart is to bring You praise
From the inside out, O my soul cries out

These words are real and alive. They bring hope and focus and you just want to keep singing them. I love this Heaven Song.

Encounter Six: Mark and Grant and some other YL guys have been spreading love around Carmel by doing things like standing on the corner of busy intersections and holding up giant smiling faces to everyone driving by and dare them to, "smile with your teeth". They've just started a twitter i_dare_you_2 that will give dares of love everyday-- I dare you to hold the door open for the next 10 people. I dare you to throw away someone's lunch for them. I dare you to give someone you don't know a compliment.

Encounter Seven: Tonight's Campaigner sheet was all about joy. I always love talking with these girls in our circle on Mondays because they are choosing to grow and learn and challenge their faith. We loved these verses tonight.

Therefore if you have any encouragement from being united with Christ, if any comfort from his love, if any common sharing in the Spirit, if any tenderness and compassion, then make my joy complete by being like-minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and of one mind. Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. Phillipians 2:1-4

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Phillipians 4:4-9

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Granny Smith Apple, Macaroni & Cheese, and Mauvalous colors

One of my favorite parts of the weekend is going to church with friends and having lunch afterwards. Its one thing I always look forward too-- I'm so thankful for MaryEllen, Sar, Avery, and Michelle.

I passed this graffiti in an alley on the way to go make art with Molls. Oh the irony.

Step 1: Buy supplies.

Step 2: Organize crayons in rainbow order, throwing away the sick browns and blacks.

Step 3: Hot glue crayons to the top of a canvas.

Step 4: Use a hair dryer to melt the crayons and drip wax. Experiment with the best method.

Step 5: Flip the circuit every time we blow it by using two hair dryers on high.

Step 6: Find a good stopping point and add text from the graffiti hoodlum.

Step 8: Document the craft.

I love Molls. I love making crafts. I love new art for my classroom. I love when we can recreate something really cool but put our own twist on it. I love talking and listening to music while we work.

Also feeling the inspiration this weekend; Yvette and Sarah created their canvases on Friday at Drake. Natalie and Saba made theirs today on black which I love.

And then Emily and Eric added more color to my night. I still can't get over that they live so close and that we could walk to dinner together. I got to hear about Emily climbing a waterfall and Eric made me laugh so hard I spit out my iced tea. You know life is good when that happens.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

"Yes, this is just so great."

Top 10 Reasons Why Today Was Just SO Great:

1. Kylie celebrated her 6th birthday this morning. On the agenda: decorating cereal bowls, an obstacle course, breakfast donuts, and free time with 10 friends. 

2. The other half of Kylie's friends at the party were Young Life connected adults that drank their Patachou Banana Nut coffee and helped out whenever Annie delegated a new task.

3. Lunch at Patachou with Linda, Maddie, Annie, Erin, Sarah and MaryEllen. I've been craving this exact bacon, egg, cheese on sourdough sandwich since I've returned to Indy.

4. When I'm with these people we walk places instead of driving. We laugh and tell stories and don't really want to be anywhere else.

5. Sar and I went to visit her Young Life girls in Carmel. She loves them. They love her. It's pretty precious. And we got Orange Leaf. And Diet Coke.

6. Did I mention Sarah Briggs is here? It's the best to drive and listen to our fav songs and laugh about dumb things and know what she's thinking and have her ask the best questions and hang out together all day long because we're just really good at that.

7. All of our friends from the birthday party regrouped for dinner at Iaria's, a kitschy Italian restaurant downtown. Sar and I split a pepperoni pizza with red peppers. With much enthusiasm from Erin and Annie I've decided to make peppers my food goal for this year.

8. Everyone played the top 10 game. Michelle suggested, "Top 10 Things You Couldn't Pay Me To Do." Sar read all the lists out loud and then we guessed who it belonged to. 

 9. Bowling with Junior, Lips, Bestbutt, Midget, Weirs, Biebs, CampT, Ltrain, Jackie, and Perky. This sport is not my strength but I think just about anything would be fun with this group of people.

10. Today I'm used to waking up at 6 for school and going to bed by 11 so I can stay awake the next day. Today I got to sleep in till 8:30 and we didn't get home till 12:30. Craziness. I didn't have to work today which was my third day "off" since May. Seriously. Today I got to spend the whole day with one of my best friends that I rarely see. So great.