Taylor Homecoming 2014

A week and a half ago was my 5 year college reunion at Taylor University. For months I contemplated whether or not I should go. I hadn’t been back since graduating and I wanted to see people, but the thought of traveling 11 hours each way sounded daunting. About a week before homecoming, I found out two of my roommates were going and at that point I couldn’t not go.

This summer when I read Bittersweet by Shauna Niequist, she emphasized the importance of friendship. She said, “Get up, make a phone call, buy a cheap ticket, open your front door. Because there really is nothing like good friends, like the sound of their laughter and the tones of their voices and the things they teach us in the quietest, smallest moments.” It gave me motivation to make more of an effort to see my friends, regardless of the time and money involved, and this was the perfect opportunity to make it happen.

So a week before homecoming I presented this idea to Chris and he was not so excited about driving 22 hours in 3 days, but eventually gave in as he saw how important is was for me to see my friends (and in the end he got to see his friends too). I also wanted him to get to know my friends as well as see where I went to school.

So on a Friday after work we made the 8 hour drive to Columbus, Ohio to stay with my roommate Megumi and her husband Ben. Saturday morning we got up and made the 3 hour drive to Taylor. When we got there we registered and then headed over to the alumni lunch. Everyone was in one big tent, but there were different sections for each reunion class. We got over to our section and only saw a few people. We thought it was early and that more people might show up, but then we started realizing that not many people would be coming, which really bummed me out. Part of the reason I wanted to go back was to see a bunch of people, but that didn’t happen. I get it. A lot of people just had babies, they live far away, they had plans that weekend, or they didn’t come because the weather was crappy that day. It’s the realization that what we had in college will never happen again, even though you hope for the reunions to be a little reminder of what we had in college. While I was disappointed, I had to remind myself that the main reason I went was to spend time with my best friends.

After lunch we walked around campus so Megumi could see one of her professors. There we met up with Brook and Eric, which was great to have a few minutes to chat just the four of us (while Gumi and Ben chatted with her prof) since Chris and Eric had never met. Then we all headed over to the football game. We stayed for about 15 minutes and then watched the halftime performance by the dance team, which they did not have when we were there (hence why we wanted to stay and see what it was all about).

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After sitting on blankets on wet benches and still getting our pants soaked (it looked like we peed our pants), we decided to leave the game and walk around campus. We cut through the Dining Commons to get out of the rain and to peek at the changes when we ran into some friends from 3rd West. It so was fun to actually see people we hung out with in college and catch up with them for a few minutes. Then we headed over to see the new dorm, which has this crazy bridge-waterfall action going on. So cool! Then we headed over to our dorm, Olson Hall, to have a look around. It’s funny to walk through the dorms and realize how gross they actually are, with garage and unwashed dishes out in the hallway. I’m sure we were like that too and didn’t notice because it was normal then, but going back now it’s gross. It was also interesting to walk down our old hall and see almost all the doors closed. In college we just left our doors open, even sometimes when we went to class, because it allowed for more socializing. Maybe that is still normal on weekdays or on other weekends besides Homecoming, but it just felt weird.

Hanging out with Grace Olson. Note to self:  work on posture so you don't look pregnant.

Hanging out with Grace Olson. Note to self: work on posture so you don’t look pregnant.

After we headed over to the new science building, which was amazing! It was massive and beautiful. We went into some of the classrooms and just sat and talked in the comfy chairs, eating the snacks left in there from a meeting earlier in the day. After leaving the science building we drove past our house senior year, which is now a parking lot to a new apartment building (sad), and then headed over to Ivanhoe’s, the local hangout with awesome ice cream! While the salad I always got wasn’t as good as I remembered (I play things up way too much in my head) the ice cream was still amazing!

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After Ivanhoe’s, we dropped Chris back off at Taylor because his college friends were coming to pick him up. I’m glad he got to spend some time with his friends, but it stunk for me because I had to drive 8 hours home by myself (but I did it! It was the longest I’ve ever driven alone). Of course the boys where so late that we got all the way back to Columbus before they got to Taylor. Yes, that is three hours late.

So overall it was a great time with my friends, but a little disappointing on the reunion end of things. It’s hard to reunite with people when they don’t show up, but it was still fun to see the changes on campus and show Chris around my old stomping grounds. Plus, this trip opened up the discussion of doing another trip for New Year’s, so yay to more friend time. We are even Skyping tonight to figure out the details :)

Deep Impact 2014

The first weekend of October we hosted Deep Impact, an in-town retreat, for the youth group. Every year we have done this retreat differently, but this year seemed to work the best. Because we had one speaker, all the students were at the church for meals and the speaker sessions and then we split off by grade to different houses for the sleepovers.

The topic this year was God & Sex. As adult leaders, we thought this was an important topic because we live in a very sexualized world, yet it is a topic rarely talked about in the church, and when it is talked about, it is usually negative. Our goal for the weekend was to start the conversation on sex in a safe environment for the students to learn and ask questions and I think that was accomplished.

Our speaker was Jason Soucinek with Projectsix19. Jason speaks regularly in churches and schools on the topic of sex and everything that comes with that topic. At the very beginning he started by asking the students how the world views sex (just physical, it’s everywhere, do whatever you want, etc.) and then asked how the church views sex (don’t do it before marriage, it’s a bad thing, etc.). Then he went to the Bible and described how God created sex in Genesis. He created it as a very good and pleasurable act between a husband and wife. He showed how God created us sexual beings before we were sinful. He explained how God created sex to be pleasurable, for procreation, and for our protection. Sex is so much more than a physical act. It is emotional and spiritual as well. The Bible says “the two become one” showing how sex welds two people together in a strong and powerful way. If that bond is broken, there is a lot of hurt and pain from the ripping apart of two that were welded together, which is why marriage is the safest place to have sex.

I was really excited for this topic of conversation among my sophomore girls because we had this conversation last year, and while I explained a lot of the same things Jason did, I don’t think they saw where I was coming from. Because this weekend provided more time for explanation and conversation, it allowed my girls to really think about the importance of sex and how they want to live that out in their lives. At the end of the weekend we were discussing what we learned and what was most impactful and I was so encouraged that my girls where taking this topic seriously and I could start to see their views changing to be more like God’s view. I seriously wanted to run out of the church doing fist pumps I was so excited. As an adult leader, the most encouraging thing to witness is your students engaging and growing.

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I think the biggest message that Jason communicated is that we should live a life in obedience to Christ. When we are seeking to be in a relationship with God and desiring to be obedient to Him, everything else will fall into place. Does that mean that waiting until marriage to have sex will be easy. Absolutely not! One thing he kept saying is that what surrounds the “no” is a greater “yes”. So while we might choose to say no to something, even for a period of time, the result is a greater yes in our obedience to God. This made me realize that while there are so many topics I could talk about with my girls, the most important thing is for them to seek obedience in their relationship with Christ. So right now I want to focus with them on being confident in their identity in Christ, in who God created them to be. I think when they discover how precious they are to God and refute some of the lies they believe about themselves, that they will have a greater desire to be in relationship with Him and then be obedient to Him.

Not only did we have great conversations, but we also had a ton of fun! In the evening we had a sleepover with our grade (8 girls, 3 boys, Chris and I) and it was a great bonding time as a group. After arriving at the house we got snacks and then debriefed the first speaker session. After debriefing we played games for 2 hours and we laughed so much. First we played Fish Bowl and then we played Therapist, which definitely got the most laughs. One round our problem was everyone with blue eyes flirted with the therapist and everyone with brown eyes was mean. That got some hilarious responses when the therapist asked if we liked his shirt haha. After the game, the boys went downstairs to sleep and us girls started She’s the Man, the best sleepover movie ever! This was also my secret weapon to get them to fall asleep or at least be quiet :)

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Another great component of the weekend was a Saturday night seminar with the parents where Jason shared advice on how to raise your children in a sexualized world. While I am not a parent, there was a lot of great information that I want to store up for the future (aka I wrote it down so I won’t forget).

Overall this was an awesome weekend of learning, good conversation, and fun bonding time! And it makes me even more excited for the time I have with my girls this year.

Rocking Horse Ranch

When Chris was in college, his summer job was to care for his friend, Tim, who has cerebral palsy. Several times throughout the summer Chris and Tim would take trips to fun places like amusement parks or resorts. On these trips, Chris was in charge for caring of Tim in any way needed: eating, getting ready, medication, etc.

Over our relationship I have enjoyed discovering attributes of Chris that came from his time with Tim. Chris wants to go into Pastor Care/Christian Counseling and a key component to that job (and to being a good husband/friend) is to be a good listener. Last year we took Tim out for lunch for the first time since we had moved to NJ. Tim is extremely smart and has several great things to share, but due to his cerebral palsy, his muscle control affects his speaking, meaning he may talk slow or with less clarity. During our lunch there were several times when I could not understand Tim and Chris would translate for me. When we were driving home that night, Chris realized that Tim is one of the reasons he listens well. When working with Tim, he had to listen intently and sometimes repeat back what he heard to clarify the message. This is an important skill that Tim has taught Chris that will help not only in his career, but in every day life.

This fall Tim’s younger brother went off to college, which has been hard for him and his parents. Tim’s mom asked if we would be up for taking Tim on a weekend trip, to cheer Tim up and to give them a little free time. Initially I was like, yes we would love to! But as the trip approached I got nervous. While Chris had a lot of experience caring for Tim, I did not and I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. I felt unprepared and the unknown can scare me. As we picked up Tim and started driving up to Rocking Horse Ranch in New York, I continued to contemplate my unpreparedness. But as the weekend went on, my fears were eased and we had a great time! It was a great reminder from God that I should not fear the unknown, but embrace it as it comes.

Rocking Horse Ranch is a family resort that Chris and Tim have both been to before. It was packed with people! While there we participated in the many activities they had available, the main one being horseback riding. On Saturday we all went riding once before lunch and Tim went again after lunch while Chris studied and I read. Afterwards we found a picnic table (because it was gorgeous outside) and we played Ticket to Ride. We played right by the lake, so afterwards Tim went kayaking and Chris and I went paddle boating. Before dinner the boys went swimming and then after dinner we played Ticket to Ride again in the lobby.

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Throughout the weekend I think I was most surprised by all the people staring at Tim. While it’s something I should have expected, I didn’t. Adults usually smiled at us and continue on, or offered help when needed, and kids would stare for long periods of time. And I totally get it, especially for kids. Tim is different from them and they are curious. They aren’t being mean or rude, they are just observing. Some parents noticed and would completely turn their kids around so they were facing the opposite direction. Some people would ask questions about Tim, wondering how much he can understand or how he communicates. We had one kid watch us play Ticket to Ride and he would try to help us out, which was really sweet. While I was surprised by this attention, it also gave me a new found compassion for those who interact with the disabled (which at many times would include myself) because they are usually just curious and they don’t know how to act. They aren’t trying to be rude by staring or by asking questions. Instead they are trying to love the person and be better informed. Or they do nothing because they feel uncomfortable and I understand that too.

Sunday morning we did our last ride before leaving the ranch. To be honest, riding a horse was a different experience than I expected. While I knew that horses were big and powerful animals, I wasn’t that nervous to ride them… until I got on one. My first ride on Saturday we did the beginners course where we walked trails in the woods. My horse, Ranger, used to be a running horse, so I don’t think he liked the fact that we were walking. At the beginning the wranglers taught me a few things about riding, like how to sit, how to “control” them, etc. They kept saying, you’re in control, but I did not feel that way. I would pull the reins and my horse either wouldn’t stop completely or he would take after Taylor Swift and shake it off. Sometimes I felt like I was hurting him, but he also wouldn’t stop moving so I had to keep pulling. At two points in the ride Ranger did a complete 180. It happened so fast and freaked me out. I get it. The horse behind him was too close or the girl two behind us was scream crying and freaking him out. I understand that I can pull the reins to stop him, but how to you prevent him from backing up and turning quickly? Eventually on the walk I wouldn’t even let him turn his head to look behind us because I thought he would freak again. So lets just say that I wasn’t that interested in riding again on Sunday. For a girl who likes to be in control, I felt out of control. But I went again, and this time I felt out of control in the opposite way. Sunday morning we did the intermediate ride, which included walking and trotting. My horse, Major, was immediately disobedient to me and the wrangler when he cut off three other horses, wedging us right in the middle of a family, so he could be behind his BFF Butch. So lets just say he was very mad at me when Butch went left on the beginner ride and we went right to the intermediate ride. He literally stopped and started stomping his back hoof at me in protest. I almost gave in and went on the beginner ride because I didn’t really want to do the intermediate ride either, but after some encouragement from the wranglers and some good kicks, we got in the right line. We walked for a little bit and then it was time to trot. Since Major was mad at me he would not trot. I’m flailing my legs, kicking him in the side and I bet he was internally laughing at me. After he walked the whole first trot, we got placed in the back of the line. Over time, the wrangler behind me taught me the proper way to sit and how to get him to trot without looking like an idiot kicking him. So finally he went! And while it was kinda fun, it was also quite painful on my legs and I probably looked really stupid, but I did it!

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After the horse riding adventure we ate lunch and then headed home. On the way home we stopped at the Storm King Art Center, which is an outdoor sculpture park. We only had an hour, which is not much time, but we were able to catch the trolley and see most of the park. Overall I’m not an art observer. I can only make it so long in a museum, especially with abstract art that I don’t understand. So while I was uninterested in most of the sculptures, there were some cool ones. Plus the park was beautiful. The leaves were starting to change so it was great to drive around and observe fall.

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Overall I had a really great weekend. It was great getting to know Tim better and getting a glimpse into Chris’s past, though I’m sure Tim was better behaved when I was around. I love watching Chris is these settings because I see his love for others and his desire to serve them. It makes me excited that he will be the father to our children and I can’t wait to watch him thrive in that role. Overall, I think I realized that if we have a child with disabilities that we could do it. It would be very hard and different than the future we are imagining, but we could do it. And for all the times it would be hard, there would also be times that it would be extremely rewarding. I’m so thankful for people like Tim that God places in our lives to teach us new things and who reveal to us new ways that God is working in our hearts.

Life Can Be Chaotic

How our apartment currently looks is slightly how my life feels right now…

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Chaotic and full. This is real life right now. It’s busy, but with good things. This weekend marks my 7th weekend in a row where I will not sleep in our apartment at least one night, if not both. I keep looking forward to the first weekend of November because I will get to stay home all weekend! I keep thinking it’s the light at the end of the tunnel until I realize that the following 4 weekends will be the same. When we restarted our jobs at the church in September (we had the summer off) we told ourselves this year would be different. We told ourselves we would be home more on the weekend. Unfortunately that’s not how it’s turning out. While these weekends away have been filled with good things and great people, some work related and some not, it can be exhausting. During the week I try to relax on my 3 free nights, but it usually turns into completing my ever-growing to-do list and goals since lately I haven’t been able to work on them during the weekend. As you can see from the pictures, we are sleeping in the living room because our new bed is being worked on in the bedroom (I just finished it last night!). The box is from our new filing cabinet so we can get our paper situation under control. And there is my suitcase that I still haven’t unpacked from this past weekend. Very unlike me, but when your bedroom in under construction, you try to stay out of it as much as possible.

All of that said, I have a lot of things to post about! I have actually written at least 5 posts, but I haven’t had time (or made time) to edit my pictures and get them posted. Sometimes when you have a free minute you just need to watch a tv show and chill instead of always working on the next thing. However, after this weekend, even though I still will be gone most weekends, I think my life will feel lighter and I am hoping to have more time. So here is to documenting more life events soon and getting to a place where my apartment doesn’t look like a tornado just went through it!

Get ‘Er Done {September Review & October Goals}

October goals

And it’s October. As expected, September flew by with a lot going on. My second job started up again, meaning we were only home one weekend this month. October and November look the same in those regards, so that is just something to get used to again. Honestly, starting up my second job has been better than I expected. However, I’m still trying to figure out how to balance everything. I loved hanging out with our friends this summer and now the time to do that is minimal with our varying schedules and with us being gone on the weekends. Plus, trying to fit in my goals and every day to do list is causing me to rethink how I spend my time. While there are times I am really busy, there are also times that I am being lazy, meaning I’m not initiating time with others and I’m not working on things that need to be done. Instead I am watching tv and reading too many blogs. While it’s good to have some rest time, I need to work on balancing that better.

So before I get into October goals, left’s review my September goals:

1. Read Cold Tangerines by Shauna Niequist. I read it but I didn’t finish it. I don’t even think I’m on page 100 yet. However, I have really been enjoying the book and it’s giving Chris and I the travel bug. In one chapter she talks about all the things her and her husband wanted to do before they started having kids and she listed several places they traveled to. Thinking about our life, we are saving money to pay for school and buy a house afterwards, which are all really important, but by then we will probably start having kids and our adventures alone will be limited. So now we are discussing ways to save money to travel more and adjusting to being ok with the house waiting a year longer than I expected. But yay to traveling! And Chris actually agreed to it which is even more exciting, though he doesn’t want to go to Europe because he thinks is boring. But I love the beach so that’s ok… for now. We will go to Europe eventually, or I’ll just go with some friends.

2. Start building something! I actually did this! I bought all the wood for three projects. It’s easier for me to get everything at once because it gives me more motivation to get it done. Getting the plans ready and getting the materials is the hardest part for me and usually prevents me from starting projects. I had to make two trips to Home Depot because I knew it wouldn’t all fit in my car. Buying wood seems so easy until I realize that I spent 3 hours at the store. So here are my projects and where they stand:

  1. Bed Frame and Headboard: All the wood is cut and at our apartment to be assembled. Last week I started nailing the frame together and on my second piece my nail gun jammed :( I spent days trying to fix it, but couldn’t figure out how to get some screws off. Luckily I brought it to work and the head of maintenance fixed it for me (and it probably took him 2 minutes). So some progress, but a lot more to go.
  2. Desk: I have most of the pieces cut and I started assembling it at Chris’s parents’ house. I had to bring several tools from our apartment up to their house one weekend. We left in a hurry, so when I started assembling pieces I realized I only had 6 screws and the rest were at home. So I did what I could with some wood glue, six screws, and my nail gun and I got it to the point where I could frame them, which could hold them together for now. So when I go up next weekend I will remember to bring my screws so I can work on it more.
  3. Laundry Room Shelf: FINISHED! I was so excited that I actually finished a project. I will write a post on that sometime this month.

3. Work on my wardrobe. Didn’t happen at all, but I thought about it. That counts for something right?

4. Workout 2-3 times a week. Didn’t really happen. When I posted my goals a week late I already hadn’t exercised the first week. The second week I exercised twice at the Seminary gym with Chris. The third and fourth week it didn’t happen, but I did several days of woodworking, which made me more sore than any of the workouts I had done and I was sweating a lot. So I kind of worked out. This Monday I started the Living and Active Challenge and I workout out Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. Yes you read that right. I worked out three days in a row! I knew I had to because I have an insane work weekend (we have an in-town high school retreat that I am partially in charge of), so if I didn’t get it done at the beginning I knew I wouldn’t have time. Now I only need to fit in one workout this weekend, plus my memory verse.

So overall, my goals went ok, but I didn’t completely finish everything, so I’m going to do the same goals for October. My only modifications are finishing my woodworking projects (instead of starting them) and exercising 4 times a week to coincide with my challenge. Here are a few other great things that happened in September:

  • An anonymous person in our church donated money to pay all of our medical bills. HUGE BLESSING!!! We are so thankful!
  • We finished watching Suits.
  • We obsessively ate Trader Joe’s Ice Cream Sandwiches. They are so good!
  • We went to Rocking Horse Ranch, which is a family resort in NY, last weekend with our friend Tim. More on that later.
  • I ran for the first time in months.
  • We started our high school small groups up again and I love my girls. It’s amazing to see how we have grown as a group since last year. I’m excited and hoping to see more personal growth in them throughout this year.
  • We played Settlers of Catan with just the two if us. We each had two players so it was like four people were playing. It definitely presented its challenges. We tried to play fair and not favor one play over another, but that was hard at times.

Those are the main things. I hope you have a great October! Anything you are hoping to get accomplished or something you are looking forward to? I can’t wait for the trees to change more!

Living and Active Challenge

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Last year I participated in the Living and Active Challenge hosted by Clare at Peak313 and this year’s challenge starts next Monday! I’m really excited to start this, even though I know it’s going to be hard, because I really want/need to start exercising regularly. Plus this will help me beat Chris and Josh in our most-ripped-by-Christmas bet.

There are several components to this 5 week challenge. First is to exercise 4 times a week for a minimum of 25 minutes. Clare will provide workout options or you can do your own thing. Second is the spiritual element of memorizing a Bible verse every week. Clare got the idea of “living and active” from Hebrews 4:12. Her passion is for everyone to be living and active in their faith and in their health. Third is an accountability component. Every week you check in on her website. She encourages people to find someone to do the challenge with so they can keep each other accountable. While this would be helpful for me, last year I ran off internal motivation to concur. I see it as a competition against my laziness and I want to win! For those who complete each week and do the weekly check ins, there are prizes available to win at the end. While this is a nice perk, I know I won’t win, so that’s not a motivating factor for me, just a bonus if it were to happen. She also encourages you to take before and after pictures to document your progress. I like taking measurements and weighing myself too. I did all of that at the beginning of this month for our Christmas bet and since I haven’t done much since then, I’m going to use those pictures and measurements for this too. I while check them again at the end of the 5 weeks.

Fitness is something I really enjoy, but when I get out of the habit I dread it because I know how much work it requires to get back to where I want to be. I’m hoping this challenge will be the kick start I need to establish better workout habits. I know that when I workout consistently I feel better. Not only am I more confident in how I look, but I have so much more energy and I sleep better too.

So if you are looking for something to do, whether you workout consistently or not, this is a great challenge to try!

SnapShop and Up North

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts (here and here), I recently finished an online photography course by Ashley Ann Campbell. I started following her blog over a year ago and that is how I discovered the course. She offers courses for DSLRs and iPhones. I also think Ashley Ann is amazing! I love her blog and when I grow up I want to be like her. Haha, well I actually want to be myself, but there are so many qualities that she has that I hope rub off on me just by reading her blog, especially once I start having kids.

Chris and I got a DSLR about a year before we got married (meaning we both wanted one, but it was silly for both of us to get one assuming we would eventually get married, so he got it for Christmas and I used it). When we first got the camera I made an effort to learn how to use it and I researched the different elements of shooting in manual. While I learned a lot in my research (and practice), I didn’t really understand how everything worked together or the short-cuts of my camera. So I usually shot in aperture mode because I liked controlling the bokeh (background blur) or I just stopped taking pictures. There were times our camera would go months just sitting in its bag in the closet. And sometimes I think I avoided taking pictures because I also dreaded the process of putting them on my computer. I know it doesn’t take that long, especially because my photo editing software can edit multiple pictures at once, but from some reason it always sounded daunting.

I signed up for Ashley Ann’s class because I wanted to really learn the basics of my camera. I also hoped I would take more pictures if I knew how to use it better. Ashley’s course was split into three sections: rules/composition of taking a good picture, how to shoot in manual, and extra aspects of photography. While some of the information I knew, I learned so many more new things. Ashley Ann has this amazing way of explaining the hard things in simple terms. While I still have a lot of practicing to do, I feel like I can shoot in manual and not get terrible pictures. Plus, I like the control I have over how the picture turns out.

One down side of the class (or me) is that I didn’t have a lot of people to photograph and it’s hard to practice in our apartment because we don’t get a lot of natural light. But when we went to Michigan to visit my parents I got to practice a lot. So I thought I would share pictures from my trip along with what we did.

We went to my parents for a long Labor Day weekend. This is our third year visiting over Labor Day, so it seems to be a tradition now. We spend the first day and a half at their house where we caught up with friends, saw my grandma, went shopping, and got my hair cut. Then we headed up to our family cabin on Lake Huron. Our first day there we went into Mackinaw for our annual mini-golf tournament and did a little shopping (we got an ornament for our Christmas tree) and got fudge/ice cream/caramel apples at Kilwins. I only took iPhone pictures because it was rainy out.

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On our way home it started pouring! In 2-3 hours we got 3.8 inches of rain. I think that is more than Fresno has gotten all year. It was so intense that it flooded the creek behind our house and rose above the bridge. Here are some regular versus flooded picture… Crazy!

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When the rain stopped we went down to the beach where the creek drains into the lake. Chris was loving life digging out the creek to make it wider and flow better, Olivia was making creations and running all over the beach, and Greg was riding the tube down the creek.

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The next day we went to Ocqueoc Falls. Growing up we went here a lot. Over the years they have invested more money into it, making it more of a park, so a lot more people go now. I felt bad for Chris because he wanted to swim in the falls so bad, but we decided it was a bad idea incase he slipped and fell.

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The rest of the weekend was filled with hangout time on the beach, riding the Seadoo, watching The Office, awesome sunsets, shooting BB guns, and playing Settlers of Catan. We have been dying to buy this game since we became obsessed with it a month ago. My mom bought it for us at the mall right before we went up to the cabin and we got my family hooked on it! We even got my dad to stay up until midnight playing, which is a miracle. They liked it so much that my dad asked “so whose game is this?” and my mom asked if they could keep it and buy us a new one. Proud moment.

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This shot it me impressing Chris with my accurate shooting skills. There are three dents below the USA logo from three shots I took in a row. The first two didn’t break the can, but the third did.

August-214

Overall it was an amazing weekend and an amazing online course. I look forward to practicing with my camera more. I know I need to be diligent about planning practice opportunities, which really means I need to get over myself and ask people if I can photograph their kids. That for me takes personal growth as well as photography growth. I’m also daydreaming about new camera equipment, but I have to keep reminding myself that I’m not there yet. But hopefully soon because I already have my eye on some expensive stuff.