Sunday, November 25, 2012

Sometimes I'll Be Torn

Being in America so close to Christmas was somewhat bittersweet. There is nothing like my parents' house at Christmastime, especially because my father is the decorator and makes the house so warm and cozy both inside and out. I realized when I was sipping on a Gingerbread Latte from Starbucks how the flavor immediately takes me back to Jacksonville and shopping at Target. Memories abound with each ornament on the tree, wrapping paper Mom has used for years, and Christmas china placed on the table. This year, we had Christmas early because I won't be there and my brother and sister-in-law will be with her family. As we were coming home from church today, I began to notice the familiarities around Jacksonville that remind me we're in the Christmas season. The nativity scenes in front of churches, the decorations (albeit tacky) that light up a neighbor's yard, Advent festivities taking place at my home church. All of these are reminders of what I'll be missing for the first time being away from my family at Christmastime.

Yet, I can't help but look forward to what new traditions will be taking place this year. Spending time with new friends in Kandern, reconnecting with my favorite families at ACB and how I'll get to be a part of their Christmas traditions, and of course going to as many Christmas markets as I can before they close on Christmas Day!

So I think it's normal for me to be torn. I want to be with my family, but this year it's just not feasible and in my heart, I've already prepared to be in Germany/Switzerland for the holidays. I'll of course be thinking of all of the sights and sounds mentioned the closer it gets to Christmas, but I'm glad I got to experience a little taste of them while I was in Jacksonville this week.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Quick Trip Stateside

My dear friend, Tammy, got married this weekend and I was the Maid of Honor. The wedding was extra special because my dad officiated and my mother played the piano and sang, so it was quite the family affair! It also meant that I was able to be with my family for Thanksgiving, which hasn't happened in a long time. It was a great trip to Florida & Georgia, but I am excited to return to Germany on Monday! Here are a few pics of the wedding weekend:

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Thanksgiving at Storch

I love dorm subbing. I especially love dorm subbing at Storch Girls Dorm! Last Thursday was Dorm Thanksgiving and I got to participate in sharing food and fun with the staff and girls there, as well as the other subs.

A few pictures of our night:

Lexi and some of her girls

Love them!

Me and one of my choir kiddos

Enjoying some yummy food!

Dorms staff and subs

Dorm Mom Stacey and me. Love her!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

The What-ifs

Do you ever sit and wonder "what if" something had or hadn't happened in your life? Basketball tryouts are this week and it got me to thinking about when I was in high school and tried out for cheerleading in 9th grade. The reason it made me think on this is because I know not all the students can make the team and some will probably be devastated and wonder what good will come out of not making the team.

In 9th grade, I didn't make cheerleading and I was devastated. I cried for days. The first pep rally seeing all of my cheerleading friends - including my best friend - out on the court made my heart sink. I thought my world had ended.

But that was the year I started an acting class. It was also the year our high school began its drama and choral program. And even though I could have done both, it would have been difficult. I wasn't the best student in the world and it took a lot for me to make a B sometimes. But theatre and choir became my outlet. It became the thing I flourished in. And ultimately, it was because of that that caused me to study it in college.

And now, I'm the proud choir director of 26 awesome kids and just finished co-directing a play.

So the what-if? What if I had made cheerleading? What if I had given up singing and theatre to devote 4 years of my life to something I probably wouldn't have continued in college. I wonder if life would be different now?

In the coming days, I hope I can use this story to be an encouragement to my kiddos who will be trying out for basketball. Some making it, some not. Either way, God will use it in their future. He always does.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Doing What I Love to Do

This week our High School play, Quiet Summer, opened at BFA. We just finished our second run tonight and I have to admit, I'm starting to feel a little sad that tomorrow night is our final show. I have grown to love these cast members and have enjoyed getting to work with them everyday after school. It's been tiring-but theatre is tiring-and so worth it. I am reminded so much of just why the Lord has brought me here to BFA. I love getting to teach choir and I love getting to work in theatre again. I am ecstatically happy. These kids bring me so much joy!

I'm sorry if this post is a little choppy. I've been dealing with a bad back all day and exhaustion so instead of rambling on, I leave you with some pictures of my awesome actors...

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

I'm Published!

My friend Carrie Beth introduced me to Single Roots a few months ago. Single Roots isn't your typical singles website. It's not a 'woe is me I'm single and life sucks' type of place. It's simply a place where singles can go and live life together.

I was privileged to be a guest blogger on their website today!


Thursday, November 1, 2012

Herbst Messe

A night filled with rides, food, & just getting to hang out with my friends/colleagues & kiddos. We began the evening with dinner at Munsterplatz, then a few rides on the ferris wheel. The tradition at BFA is to ride bumper cars together and so at 8:30, the High School met up at the bumper cars and it was fun getting to run into the kids and have the ride to ourselves for a good amount of time. Afterwards, a few of us ventured over to Kaserne where we rode swings that swung you over the Rhein and then tested our stomachs on a ride called Meier that swung you all over the place! We finished the evening getting 1/2 price Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks and then heading back to Kandern.

All in all, it was a fantastic evening. I loved being back at Herbst Messe!!!!