Monday, December 22, 2008

Things I have accomplished since the 'DEAR GOD TAKE ME NOW snow storm 2008'

1. Made Curtains for my kitchen

2. Made two batches of cookies. One was successful, the other will be ice cream topping crumble (read, cookies that spread all over the pan I don't want to throw them away).

3. I am currently making little apple tarts

4. I ventured out in my car after it had been snowing ALL DAY and we made it. My car is a brick.

5. I checked the news every 20 min to see if it would tell me the answers about life. It didn't.

6. I lived in hypothetical land a lot wondering if my flight would get canceled, how I would get home, wondering if Lindsey and I would get STUCK in the house with no power, etc.

7. Sometimes when I was bitching a LOT Linds would remind me that there are people who are homeless who are sleeping outside and then it didn't seem so bad.

8. I went to work today because the Mayor REFUSES to close the city. I think when people are waiting three hours for a bus it is time to admit defeat or GET MORE EFFING SNOW PLOWS.

9. I went sledding

10. I drank wine and watched a lot of movies.

Here are some pictures from the 'KILL ME NOW snow storm 2008'

Linds and I sledding. My pants were SO wet and ALL of me was cold

Snow on Saturday 12/13

Snow on 12/21 after everything had defrosted and started again on Wed.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Damn Girl

I would reproduce if this was the result

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Open letter to Seattle

Dear Seattle,
I know that it rains a lot here. We all try to act like its no big deal and it doesn't make us depressed and we can handle it because people are dying from poverty (and we are all working in non-profits to try and fix it).
Let me ask you a question Seattle, why the hell do we not use umbrellas. I know that using them would be admitting some sort of defeat, like the rain actually does hit our heads and it is actually annoying. Let me suggest that we get over our smug attitudes toward umbrellas. I just think that a little gem like the umbrella above would make it ok that it gets dark at 3:30 pm every freakin night.

Please reconsider.


P.S. My Birthday is in a week and the umbrellas are under $40 and they can be found here

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

This is why it matters

These two boys waited as a long line of adults greeted Senator Obama before a rally on Martin Luther King Day in Columbia, S.C. They never took their eyes off of him. Their grandmother told me, "Our young men have waited a long time to have someone to look up to, to make them believe Dr. King's words can be true for them." Jan. 21, 2008.

From Here:

Sunday, November 2, 2008


I found this gem right here

In the middle

As you may know (I've probably mentioned it at least 10 times on this blog and at least once each day) I was in a few weddings this summer. It has been wonderful and fun (I may have actually enjoyed dancing), but at times really awkward. There are a series of questions I get asked at events like this that make me wish I could orchestrate great stories so the real answers feel less painful.

Here are some examples:

"So do you have a boyfriend?"
What I am thinking: "none of your damn business "
What I say: "no not right now"

"So when is it your turn?"
What I am thinking: "I wasn't aware that there was a line. Maybe I just forgot to hop in the 'please marry me' line"
What I say: "Oh I don't know (insert awkward smile trying to make that question less painful)."

"Are you just not into dating right now?"
What I am thinking: "No, I have not been 'into dating' for 23 years'. Of course I am into dating, but it just hasn't been that easy and how the hell do you expect me to answer that question without being inappropriately vulnerable"
What I say: "Well, I am open to it, its just not the most important thing to me"

This all feels like a complicated dance to not be too vulnerable, too sad, or appear to have desperate written across all of my face.

I was talking to my therapist about this awkward line to walk. I don't want to appear like I need to be married for my life to be whole but I also don't want to pretend like I don't want to be with someone right now. My therapist asked me why I can't be somewhere in the middle? I feel like I am in the middle, but I don't know how to express that and I don't think I have had a lot of examples of how to comfortably be in between both of those places.

So, here I am, trying to live in the middle. I have a job that feels important, I am working on figuring out what it means for me to be a Christian, on most days I feel pretty whole and I think these are things I would like to share with someone in the near future.

Monday, October 20, 2008

I couldn't resist

I know it is no shock to anyone that I am not a huge Palin fan. I thought that this video was rather poignant. I will just say that just because Sarah Palin is a woman does not mean that she is a feminist. Having a woman in power does not necessarily mean that she doesn't buy into patriarchal ideas.

# 10

Yes my friends, it is true, wedding #10 of me being a bridesmaid has come and gone. It was wonderful for a lot of reasons, but I may just start with one of them. This reason may also explain my blogging absence.

I have wonderful friends. They know how to listen, how to ask questions, how to lovingly tell me that I am taking myself way too seriously. I feel known when I am with these women. It has been a joy to see them make commitments to loving partners and to see some of them leave Seattle and others leave the country.

All of this change has left me feeling a bit lonely. I haven't blogged in a while because I don't want this to be a place where I am awkwardly vulnerable. I sort of have this idea that that should happen with people before I write it on the internet.

At this last wedding I had the chance to reconnect with a group of women that I love dearly. They have watched me go through many different stages of becoming who I am and they have always been loving and faithful. I needed to share the sadness of not being with them as much as I want before I could share it here.

This weekend was rejuvenating and reminded me that sometimes we just have to say how we are feeling before we can expect people to care for us in the ways we need to be cared for. This doesn't mean things are instantly perfect. I am still sad occasionally and I am working on adjusting to big kid life. I might be better at sharing those things (and maybe some useless funny things) here, but not before I first share with those who care for me.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

My mom the wineo

Conversation that took place this evening with my mom, post just enough wine for her to be a bit funny

Me: Hey mom can we go skinny dipping tonight? Will you or the neighbors see?

Mom: No I checked it out

Me: Oh you went to all the neighbor's houses to check and see if they have a view of the pool?

Mom: ignores comment

Mom: You can go take those noodles and straddle one and put one around you and just float.

Laurieann: I don't think I want to use one of those noodles, I don't know where they've been

Mom: No, they're not gooey

Me: Uncontrollable laughter

Welcome to my life. If anyone is interested in making a movie of this madness just let me know :)

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The J-O-B

Here are the details about the actual job I have (well I will officially have it once my background check is complete).

I will be working with the Victim Support Team (VST) at the Seattle Police Department. The VST is a civilian team that responds with the police to a domestic violence call. The VST is called by the police once the scene has been secured. We are there to offer resources and help safety plan. My job comes in after the weekend when we are sort of a bridge between the DV survivor and the SPD. Apparently it is called system based advocacy.

Another part of the job will be my time with the JustServe team. I think there are about thirty of us and we will have a week of training before our jobs start and then we will meet on Fridays after that to discuss things. We will be discussing issues of violence and racism and how to address the pipeline that sends a disproportionate amount of youth of color into the prison system. This will be an interesting dynamic because my site is the only DV site.

Anyways, those are the details :)

Thursday, July 24, 2008

. . . And We're Back

I am sorry for the long absence my beloved fans. Life here in 'just graduated from college and don't really have a lot going on land' has been pretty rough. My first excuse is that I was pretty busy sitting on the couch thinking about leaving the house for about a week. My second excuse is that the week before I left to help Ms. McK with her wedding I decided to cram FIVE interviews into one week. That my friends is the subject of this new post.

. . .

So, I have a job. It's a pretty big deal. Allow me to share with you the process leading up to this joy.

After graduation I saw a job posting on the El Centro de la Raza website. The job looked real sweet, but it was only offered through AmeriCorps. AmeriCorps is basically the domestic version of the PeaceCorps. This is also code for 'work really hard in a really challenging environment and live on $1,000 a month'. My particular team within AmeriCorps is called 'JustServe' and has an anti violence/ undoing racism focus.

Anyways, let me spare you the boring details and get to the part where I get the job. I filled out an application, went in for an interview with the AmeriCorps people, it was stellar, they gave the number of four different sites where they think I should interview, I called them and had three interview on Thursday and one on Friday.

Let me start off by saying 'never, ever, ever have three interviews in one day'. By the end of the day I sounded like a stupid girl with little depth because my brain could just not function anymore to create cohesive thoughts.

The part that was challenging about these interviews is that most of them were in situations where I would be working youth of color and at risk youth. The fact that I am a white female makes a difference in these situations and the people interviewing me wanted to see if I got that. Some people addressed it directly others asked me awkward questions trying to ignore the elephant in the room. It was hard to walk the fine line of expressing that I understood that white privilige is real and that it might affect my ability to be effective in the role and trying to not sound defensive. It was exhausting to realize that while I may seem to 'get it' in my mostly white SPU world, there is a lot I still have to learn in the real world.

I realized that this is probably reality for people of color who feel they are constantly trying to fight stereotypes that most people don't even realize they hold.

I think I might stop here and share with you a little video from illdoctrine (I have a little crushy crush on this man)

** I updated this is just a bit because I realize that I said some things that didn't really convey what I wanted them to.

Sunday, June 22, 2008


I think I really am an introvert. People don't believe this because I am kind of loud and chatty sometimes. But I just spent a whole weekend meeting new family and talking. I think if someone walks up to talk to me right now I may give them the stink eye.

Airport thoughts

So I'm at the airport, ready to go home (Seattle home) and my flight is about an hour late. I'm already here far too early for my original flight time. My mother is a bit obsessive compulsive and really needed to be confident that I wouldn't be late because of the HUGE lines at the Sacramento airport. Yeah, we are a pretty big deal.

Anyways I thought this would be the perfect time to blog. Here we go . . .

Holly and I were talking the other night (there may have been tears involved because Holly had just walked into our house and a lot of things were moved out and we both realized this is all really changing) about the rest of our lives. She said something quite profound about her desire to leave the country with the hubby in the next couple of years.

She said "I know that if we stay here I will be seduced by the car and the house and the coushy income."

All the sudden things became very clear. I have really been enjoying babysitting lately. In this time of instability, the stability of a husband, house, and children seems very appealing. This has caused quite the crisis in my life. See, I do not really subscribe to the thought that all women want to have children and a family and that is what God has created us for. I think some people have been created for that, but I think it is problematic when we confine people to certain callings based on their gender. Why have I been wanting this if it is not something that I feel is my primary calling?

Holly's comment reminded me that just because it seems appealing, that does mean it is right for me. At some point in my life I hope to have a family. But most of all I hope that I am doing justice, loving mercy, and walking humbly in a way that does not forget my neighbors here in the states and in other parts of the world.

I'm not really sure if this made sense in the way I want it to. Please feel free to ask me questions in the comments :)

Friday, June 13, 2008


If you are a Seattleite you will understand this.

I can hear the drum circle in Fremont outside my window right now. Summer has arrived my friends. I just can't wait for the naked solstice parade.

Breaking News

I graduated. It's a pretty big deal.

The sun is still rising (or at least it would be if I lived anywhere else besides Seattle)

I still know how to function in life

I have a feeling things are going to be pretty great

* I promise a more in depth post after this weekend when wedding shower number three gets marked off the list.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

So what are you doing after graduation?

So. . . I'm graduating in three weeks and yes I shit my pants at least once a day when I try to think about what the HELL I am going to do in the next six months. I am typically plagued by feelings of anxiety when I think about this next season in life. Most of this is fueled by my desire/pressure to be a 'responsible' person. Because our generation is so self-esteem obsessed I have heard my whole life "Kelsey, you really are going to be something".

A. What the hell does that even mean?
B. I don't think babysitting and waitressing really qualifies

Here is the deal, I think (read: have to convince myself) that spending some time after college babysitting and doing some other side jobs is ok. I need to some time to figure out where the hell my life is going. I also have to remind myself that people who are doing wonderful things to change the world did not just arrive there one day, it has been a journey.

All of that to say I am thinking about this next season as a fresh start. I really could do anything (almost) that I want to. I am going to take some time to start dreaming. What are the things that make me feel alive? Not what I should do.

So here is my answer : "Ask not the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive . . . then go do it. Because what the world needs is people who have come alive" ~ Howard Thurman

Saturday, May 17, 2008

The Sun

The sun is out people and it is a pretty big effing deal. The sun in Seattle feels different than the sun in California. Here are some comparisons for you.

Seattle sun:
The city doubles in size as people come out of hibernation and soak in as much Vitamin D as possible because you never know when it will come out again.

Everyone talks about how sunny it is outside. This is not considered a shallow conversation, but a time of rejoicing

70 degrees = tank tops

It is totally inappropriate to say or think anything negative about the warmth from the sun. Such actions will result in verbal reprimand from anyone in ear shot or the sun will hear you and go away.

People begin to say crazy things like 'I just want to get sunburned' (Holly)

California Sun

The city begins to shrink in size as people retreat to buildings with air conditioning. People know that it is about to reach about 103 degrees

Every summer seems to be 'the hottest summer we have had in years'. People can't seem to believe that they actually survived that kind of heat the previous summer, it must be hotter this year

70 degrees= possibly still sweatshirt material

Any sort of conversation about how ridiculously hot it is outside is unnecessary and results in a 'no shit sherlock' face from people around you

Sunday, May 11, 2008


Let me tell you about a little evening ritual that the roommate and I have. Holly gets ready for bed around 10:00 (she is a very responsible adult) and I usually join her in our HUGE (and by huge I mean, when Holly has her glasses off we run into each other) bathroom for this event.

This evening we were getting ready for bed, using our new sonicare toothbrush, discussing how to save the world, you know the usual. I was wearing a white shirt and noticed that my hands look quite tan (I just spent a week in CA at a friend's wedding. To be blogged about later and possibly with pictures). While I was admiring my new hue I asked Holly "are you jealous that I am so tan right now?"

I thought I was SO funny and laughed pretty hard for awhile. Holly continued to mock the other times I have asked her similar questions. They usually go something like this. "Holly are you jealous that I can put basically any hair product in my hair and it will come out with those great 'fresh from the beach' waves?" Or, "Holly are you jealous that I can avoid taking a shower for at least three days and not have greasy hair?"

I realize that this post may make me look like a pretty vain bitch. The truth is I am not obsessed with these things. I check out my hair in the morning and whatever happens, happens. These little exchanges between Holly and I are just a way of saying "Hey, we don't hate our bodies." On most days we think they are pretty great. There are features about Holly that I am jealous of (the fact that you can actually see her eyes in pictures), but we don't spend a lot of time dwelling on it. At the end of the day our bodies are not what they look like, it is what they do. They allow us to learn, to care, to adventure, to love, to reflect a good Creator. Those things are worth dwelling on.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

I've got a plan . . .

I'm a planner. I'm definitely not the kind of planner that has a color coded day tracker with them. In fact, I can't even keep a calendar, I always forget to write things in it. I'm a planner in the sense that I like to have things in my day. I don't remember the last time that I woke up and had nothing to do. On the off chance that I do wake up with nothing 'planned' for the day, that quickly changes by the time I am out of the shower. I will have a craft project, errand to run, friend to see, or even 'plan' to sit on the couch.

The problem (maybe this word will turn to 'adventure', but right now it feels like a problem) right now is that I don't have a plan. I am graduating in June. I know it is normal to feel some level of anxiety about this, but I REALLY need a plan. I go back and forth between plans. Get a real job, no, just nanny, but I need benefits, but I'm only young once (I'm not even really sure what that means). I am constantly trying to reconcile the part of me that needs to be responsible and the part of me that is scared that making responsible plans will lead to 'settling'.

My current plan is to try and learn to take a deep breath, know that I will be taken care of, and learn to live without a packed schedule.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


So the Dalai Lama was in town. It was a pretty big deal. I was lucky enough to attend two days of the Seeds of Compassion event. As I was sitting in Qwest Field observing the large numbers of people that had turned out for the event, the evangelical in me reared its head and I thought 'is there a Christian leader that could draw this diverse of a crowd?' I know that Billy Graham has had huge turnouts for his events, but there was something different about the crowd at Seeds of Compassion.

We are urban dwellers with an overdeveloped social conscious that is searching for a source of real hope. The Dalai Lama spoke about the importance of not only disarming nations, but disarming ourselves. I couldn't help but think 'isn't this what Jesus said?'

Now when he saw the crowds, he went up on a mountainside and sat down. His disciples came to him, 2and he began to teach them saying:
3"Blessed are the poor in spirit,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.
5Blessed are the meek,
for they will inherit the earth.
6Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
for they will be filled.
7Blessed are the merciful,
for they will be shown mercy.
8Blessed are the pure in heart,
for they will see God.
9Blessed are the peacemakers,
for they will be called sons of God.
10Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness,
for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

I believe that there is something in us that hungers for blessing beyond the 'American Dream'. I long for us to know and reflect the resurrected Christ that brings peace and justice and grace. This is the power of the Gospel. Not a gospel that creates boundaries of who is in and who is out based on moral choices, but a Gospel of love offered and reflected in the incarnation of God.

I know the issue of which voices get heard in the religious marketplace are quite complex. I am not writing a doctorate thesis, just a blog, so this is all you get :)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Equal Pay Day

Today is equal pay day!!!!

You may be asking, "Kelsey, what does that mean?"

Allow me to climb onto my very important soap box, dear reader.

You see, women still make 77 cents on every dollar that men make, and it's even worse for women of color.

I understand the shock you are experiencing right now. You may be thinking, "don't women have equal rights?" Well yes, in theory, except for the fact that fifteen states still have not ratified the Equal Right Amendment, and it is still not part of the U. S. constitution (

I know, its hard to believe that in 2008 discrimination against a person would still happen based on their ethnicity or gender. I think that the recent elections have brought to the surface very difficult conversations about institutionalized racism and gender discrimination.

I can go on, but I think I will just say 'yeah, this shit is real.'

Saturday, April 12, 2008

More than you ever wanted to know

I stole this from Holly who stole it from Maryann

Top Fives thing I can't live without, under $5

1. Bag Balm (yes it used for cow's utters, but it works magic on my lips)
2. Gnocchi
3. Small bottle of lotion for the purse
4. A cup of coffee
5. My e-mail (this may border on addiction)

Five Favorite Movies
(for those of you that have seen the blog "stuff white people like", this list may look familiar)

1. Any documentary ever made
2. Juno
3. Across the Universe
4. A League of Their Own
5. Rent

Five Songs that I listen to until I can't handle it anymore and then return to them in a month.

1. I am blessed to be a witness - Ben Harper
(this is not the real name of the song, but what it has been named on my iTunes)
2. Near to You - A Fine Frenzy
3. Not Ready to Make Nice - Dixie Chicks
(don't judge)
4. Too Long - Yael Naim
5. Diamonds on the Inside - Ben Harper

Five people/events that inspire my life

1. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission
2. John Perkins- Civil Rights leader and speaker of beautiful truth
3. Sheri Callow- Old youth pastor's wife who has made incredible, courageous choices
4. Cline and Henry- Children I nanny for who allow me to take part in their childhood wonder
5. Dr. Neuhouser- Professor and such a good mennonite

Five moments/events that changed my life

1. Seeing poverty with real faces
2. Taking Holistic Ministries my Freshman year and realizing that I could/was called to do more than just pray for someone in poverty, Jesus cares for the whole person.
3. Living in Scotland for seven months working with YWAM. I learned a lot about the ways that I want to express the grace of God and a lot about how I don't.
4. Going to South Africa and spending time in SOWETO. I have never had such hope that all that stuff Jesus said about forgiveness and turning the other cheek and being peacemakers could actually be true.
5. My parent's divorce. I know that is kind of debbie downer, but for a long time I didn't want that to be something that affected my life, but it did, and not all in bad ways.

Five current obsessions

1. Opening the window and burying myself in the covers
2. Dreaming about/attempting to plan the next six months of my life
3. NPR (always)
4. Netflix
5. Sitting next to Holly on the couch with both of our computers while simultaneously reading the same blogs. (Don't worry Dustin, we call this community and therefore it is).

Five places I would like to go

1. Switzerland (maybe attempt some canyoning and just see if I survive)
2. Arbroath, the tiny fishing town I lived in, in Scotland
3. French countryside
4. A treehouse in a forest
5. Vermont, and I would like to work on a farm even though I have never enjoyed any type of yardwork, ever.

(I need this list to be a LOT longer)

BONUS: Five querks/confessions about me

1. I don't really like talking in rooms when the doors are open
2. I yell really ridiculous things at other cars when I'm driving
3. I don't wear deodrant very often
4. I never really 'clean' things, I just make neat piles of shit
5. One time I broke a crayon in Third Grade and was so consumed by guilt I told my teacher.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Running Away

You know those times when you are just exhausted? Your body is exhausted, but mostly your emotions are exhausted. Today is one of those days.

I am tired of feeling like I am a constant voice of dissension amongst my Christian community. Maybe this is more imagined than real, but none the less it is how I feel. I should probably walk around with a scarlet 'L' for liberal.

I am tired of talking. I always feel like I have something REALLY important to say and forget that the world may continue to function even if I don't share my every thought.

I am tired of having an opinion on EVERYTHING, which leads to the feeling like I always have something to share.

I know those things seem really dramatic. I'll probably be fine tomorrow, but I just need a chance to take a second to breathe and give my brain a break.

Tomorrow, I just want to run away for a bit. I want to go sit in a field and look at the sky and be still and know He is God.

P.S. don't fret, I have a good, light hearted post in the works for this weekend

Monday, April 7, 2008

It's cupcake week on Martha

Holly and I are sitting on the couch . . . both sick.

Let me share with you some of the gems of conversation that come out of this attractive state of being.

"I wish someone would just force feed me a cupcake right now" - Me

"It was cupcake week on Martha. With all the things going on in the world, Martha has time for a cupcake week. But if I was going to go see the Dalai Lama, I wold give him a cupcake" -Holly

If anyone is interested in seeing two women reduced to three year old whiners, come on over!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Moments when I think I will have children

Sometimes I leave my five hours of babysitting and think 'Dear God, please allow me to become addicted to birth control." Other days I leave thinking that raising children might be manageable if balanced with the darling moments, and today was full of them.

I got to cook with the kids which consists of endless lies from the little Ms. in an attempt to eat almost ALL of the brownie batter (Mom, I like raw eggs. I am just going to lick the bowl, and the spoon . . . and the spatula).

The best moment of all was right as I was getting to leave.

I had just changed the little man's diaper (which smelled horrific and induced dry heaves) and he had a bit of a diaper rash so I let him run around without pants on. I was going to get my things and then I heard little man with flaming red hair, running into the room, naked butt, with a Sesame Street helmet on backwards (and two sizes too big) pushing his Radio Flyer rocket ship straight into the oven.


I go to the NY Times homepage in an attempt to understand what is going on in the world, but EVERY TIME I get sucked into the arts videos at the bottom of the page.

Watching a crazy Bjork video always wins out over reading about the latest speech Obama just gave.

If you would like to take part in this shallow consumption of the news here is a link to my latest findings.

Monday, March 31, 2008

Marriage is what brings us together today

Ugh. I've tried to write this post five times, but I just never like the way it comes out. I just keep trying to explain myself and then it gets too long. I am just going to write this shit down, and I can promise it won't be poetic.

I am in four weddings this summer. It comes up in conversation a lot and it makes me feel awkward. I am not trying to boast about how special I am. These women all hold very dear parts in my life and I am honored to be a part of their wedding days and their marriages.

I think I talk about it a lot because there is this weird paradox happening in my life.
I don't forsee myself getting married in the near future, but I read a wedding blog (feel free to judge). I can spend one hour talking about invitations and the next hour studying for a mid term. I have friend's who are making lifetime commitments and I can't commit to anything past the next three months. I am straddling two very different worlds.

I love both of these worlds.

I am trying to learn how to honor where these women are in my life and also honor where I am in this journey. It is strange to have people in your life that you love dearly go through a season that you can't really relate to.

All of this to say, I know I talk about this a lot, the marriage thing. It's not because I am secretly obsessed and pining away. I also don't want it to appear that I think marriage is silly, I think quite the opposite actually. I am just trying to process this often overwhelming new season.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

I don't take ritalin

Dear Blog,
I am sorry I have been neglecting you of late, but it seems that there is something about Spring that makes my ADD (real or not, i typically am a bit scatter brained) real out of control. I want to blog, but then I need to clean. I want to blog but then, oh shit, its snowing in March. I want to blog and then maybe I should hang those curtains sitting at the foot of my bed for three months.

I am not very good at making promises so here are some possibilities. I may write to you about my experience in Camden. I may write to you about how I am a walking blob of contradictions. I may write to you about the wedding season on the horizon. I may write to you about how the thought of graduating occasionally scares me shitless.

No promises though.

As we can see I'm not really good at being consistent.

Friday, March 21, 2008

5 years

It has been five years since President Bush waged war on the Iraqi people.

I could spend a LOT of time writing about my thoughts on this war, but I won't.

Instead I want to acknowledge the loss of life that has happened during these past five years.

3,900 American Soldiers

61,369 Iraqi Civilians

Regardless of your feelings on the war, I think and hope that we can all unite in grieving the deaths of these men and women. War ravages families and communities and leaves a path of pain and loss regardless of the outcome.

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other. "
-Mother Theresa

Friday, March 14, 2008

Spring Break!!!

In case I don't get time to post more about this tomorrow I am going here during Spring Break for about five days.

Once I get home here are the things I need to accomplish:

1. Get Bridesmaid dresses tailored so the straps don't fall off mid-grabbing bouquet from bride

2. Create some sort of wall decoration so our voices no longer echo inside the apt.

3. Catch up on all that reading, you know all the books you skim during the quarter and promise yourself you will actually read them when you have time

4. Start to think about making very big decisions for the rest of my life

5. Oh yeah, and process through the my experience at Urban Promise . . . not a big deal right?

Ode to Finals

Oh finals, you are so persistent, the way you show up every ten weeks.

Somehow you still manage to surprise me

I get so lost in our relationship that I even forget basic hygiene

You begin to consume my every thought, this relationship leaves me with little time for anything else like . . . sleeping or eating

I still get that feeling in my stomach whenever you show up, you know the kind where you want to rip out your intestines

Oh finals, I hate to break it to you this way, but . . . we are breaking up

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Things I love (and don't) about my bed

Love: When I get into the sheets after I have just made the bed and it is like a little cocoon ready for my sleepy body.

Don't: When all of the sheets get untucked from their places and wrapped around your body. There is already enough chaos in my life, I don't need it in my sheets as well (that is not meant to sound as inappropriate as it came across)

Love: When you wake up knowing that you had accomplished the things you needed to the day before and you know it is a new day.

Don't: When you wake up with the 85 things you didn't get done the day before still in your brain feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of having to take a shower (this is happens approximately 95% of the time)

Love: When I only sleep one side of my bed and wake up in the same place I fell asleep in, this is a sign of good rest.

Don't: While I am sleeping in my comfy bed and soft sheets people down the street from me are sleeping on cardboard in the park trying to hide from the relentless rain and various demons that haunt them.

Friday, March 7, 2008

The tale of a loogie

Warning: If you have a sensitive stomach I would suggest not reading this post

I have had a sinus infection which equals mass amounts of mucus flowing down my throat because I refuse to 'hawk a loogie'. The other night I was housesitting and on my way to take a shower I sneezed quite violently. I felt a large loogie project out of my mouth and onto the hardwood floor. I decided that that would be an unfortunate thing to leave on the floor so I start looking around for said loogie. Then on the bottom of my foot I realize that I found the loogie, so I hobble over to the bathroom to wipe it off. While in the bathroom I get ready for the shower and then realize I left the towel in the other room. In my attempt to retrieve a towel I also happen to trot my naked little behind right across all of the open shades for all of the neighbors to see.

It is really is rough to be this amazing all the time.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Sorry (but not really)

I have found myself apologizing a lot lately. I think that women do this quite frequently. I read in a book or heard someone say that its like women are apologizing for taking up space, apologizing for existing.

The truth is, I'm not sorry. I am just saying it so that I won't seem like a bitch. It is my way of saying 'I am self aware enough to know that this is a bit harsh, might make you uncomfortable, might not be the 'appropriate' thing to say, might inconvenience you.' That is too much to say so all that comes out is "I'm sorry . . . but".

Here are some things I am not sorry for

1. Having a strong opinion on most everything. If you have a good argument I might be swayed, but most of the time if I'm getting that heated about something, I have spent some time thinking about it.

2. Being angry. I was angry a lot last week during Violence Against Women Awareness Week. I was angry at the ways that I feel like people pay lip service to caring about our cause, but then don't show up when I feel like it counts. I could write a lot here about women and anger, but I think I'll save that for another uplifting post.

3. Asking you to do something for me. I can't think of a specific instance, but I feel like anytime I need to ask someone to do me a favor or help me out, I have to apologize. Maybe sometimes I feel genuine, but most of the time it is because I don't want people to think I am taking advantage of them.

4. Swearing, cussing, dropping the 'f'' bomb, what have you. The truth is, if I really felt bad, I wouldn't do it.

I have a very strong urge here to disclaim all of these things in an attempt to appear more balanced, but I think I'm going to practice what I'm preaching and let them be.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Reasons I would move to Europe

1. If John McCain is the next president of the United States

2. If universal healthcare doesn't happen

3. If there isn't more maternal/paternal leave

4. If Roe v. Wade is overturned (I know it will be a shock for some people to read this, but don't worry its ok and we can talk about it).

5. This last one might not cause me to leave, but I will highly consider protesting if the super delegates vote actually determines who the democratic nominee is.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Tonight . . .

I met the most attractive, sweetest barista in all of Seattle at Cafe Fiore. I almost gave him my phone number, something I very rarely have the desire to do.

I took a bath and got out with gobs of conditioner left in my hair . . . it really is a gift to be this absent minded ALL THE TIME.

I drove the wrong way up a one way because I was sure no one would come down the hill. If a bright green taxi didn't appear out of nowhere and if one of my old supervisors wasn't driving on the side street observing the whole shinanigan, it would have been a perfect plan.
(sidenote: the only reason I had to take this diversion was because there were about 15 people sprinting up the large hill by my apt., it was weird).

Someone actually protested our Violence Against Women Awareness Week. With a sign that said "being pro-man does not mean being anti-woman".
A. What does that even mean?
B. duh

I had the most delicious ice cream as a gift from my roommate for doing a little babysitting for her this weekend. French Vanilla Lavender . . . yum! Come over and I might share it with you.

I shaved my legs and painted my toe nails. This made me feel much better after an intense evening with VAWA. I know that I probably should have prayed or written in a journal or something deep like that, but the pampering did the trick and I just needed to turn off my brain for a bit.

Now. . . I am going to sleep instead of doing my World Religions homework that is over a week late.

Monday, February 18, 2008


You know those moments when it feels like you catch a glimpse of the way things were supposed to be. Moments where you know that in the midst of pain and destruction there is beauty and resurrection. Here are some of those moments that have happened to me this weekend.

Spending time on Orcas island surrounded by water, tress, and hills, instead of people, buildings, and busyness. It was a breathtaking day and a reminder that in the midst of a world that feels broken and wounded we have a God that desires peace and wonder for creation.

(sidenote: I found myself wanting to move to a cottage on a farm, growing my own food, sewing all day long, and raising cute little hippie children. For those of you know that me, very few parts of this fantasy would even be possible).

Spending time with the 'Sophia"women preparing for Violence Against Women Awareness Week. We know that this upcoming week might be hard, but we know it is important and there is deep care for each other. When it gets hard and we don't know if this is a fight worth fighting one of us is there to remind the others of the beauty in fighting for justice and creating a space where there is a voice for the voiceless.

Having Cline tell me a story about her friends and their two mommies. It was wonderful to see her innocence. She wasn't swayed by the our 'grown up' ideas of what a family is 'supposed' to look like. She just knew that her friends had two mommies and those women provided care and nurture for her friends, just like her mommy and daddy.

There is more, but I think I'll stop there for now.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Debbie Downer

I've been thinking about sadness. It's something I've been feeling a bit lately. I don't really like to be sad around people. It makes me feel like I'm being needy, also something I don't like to feel very often.
Maybe the sadness is because of this lent season. This time where we understand that we fill our lives with much to distract us from the One. When we see that our humanity is flawed and wounded and in need of the Redeemer.
Maybe it is because of my Hunger class that leaves me feeling burdened and saddened by the immense suffering around the world and even in my city. I feel paralyzed by the injustice. I feel stuck in systems that promote my indulgence at the cost of other's lives. I know that I should take hope in knowing that I serve a good God, but most days that doesn't really seem to be a good enough answer.
Maybe it is because I have dear friends that are moving into new seasons in their lives that I won't be able to fully understand. I am confident about where they are going and share in their joy, but there is a bit of sadness knowing that things won't really be the same. They will still be good, but just different.
There are of course wonderful things happening in my life, but for right now I think I will just let the sadness part be. Sometimes we just need to be sad and let that be ok. And sometimes we have to care about things enough to allow them to make us sad.

Maybe I'll write about the good things tomorrow

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Suffering, the real kind, not the 'Im stressed about finals' kind

I am taking a class called "Sociology of Hunger." Every week we talk about issues that render me silent, which is a very unusual phenomenon. There were a couple of thoughts from our last class that I think are worth sharing and maybe elaborating on when I don't need to go to bed in 20 min. (yes, I have to set bedtimes for myself so I can be a functioning human being).

We began class by addressing the always frustrating conversation of where God is in suffering. I have a hard time discussing this in a group of people of privlidge because any answer we come up with really seems to serve the purpose of helping us sleep better at night. My professor was saying that most people who would say they are not Christians would say so because God's followers seem to be hypocrites and how can a loving sovereign God allow such suffering? He said some things that I think are beautiful and don't attempt to make really shitty things 'ok'.

He said "If we don't show love in the midst of suffering than it is reasonable to expect that people will think God does not act on suffering."

After class I was discussing this with a friend and we talked about the value in a ministry of presence, something we had talked about in class. What if the only answer we have to those in suffering is "I don't know. . . I don't know why this is happening to you, but I do know that I want to be here, I want to be here to bare the image of a God who weeps in your suffering."

This sort of 'ministry' does not excuse me from my responsibilities to live a life of justice, a life where I try to understand the oppressive systems I may take part in and try to change them. It simply provides a place where I can show love in the midst of suffering.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Oh the dreams you will dream

Last night I had two very vivid dreams that I feel are worth sharing

My first dream was one I have dreamed before. I am in a room and I am about to get married. This would seem wonderful except for the fact that I typically don't know the person I am about to marry and I have great hesitation about it. In this particular dream I was in kind of a dark room with only a few other people and they were asking me if I was excited. All I could say was "yeah, I would be if I knew the guy." I had also done no planning for this event and I was wearing a dress I don't think I had even picked out (I was having a very good hair day though). I remember thinking "I guess you can live with anyone forever", but I had this sinking feeling that it just wasn't right and was a HUGE compromise/disappointment. I have had this dream at least a half dozen times where I am getting married and I don't know the person, or don't know them well, and the whole event is just kind of thrown together, and the dream always ends before the actual ceremony. what does this mean?

My second dream probably happened because of a conversation I had had with my dad earlier last night. Basically what happened is that I was in a church and they were saying something about abortion clinics and some sort of plan to go and stop them. In my dream I was so upset and I rather strongly told the people in the congregation that to go and confront a woman in such a vulnerable time would be in no way showing them the face of Christ. The part that was weird though was that my chest got very tight and I could hardly breath. It was weird.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

There is a wedding in my future

I know that title was misleading because really I have weddings (in the plural) in my future. I have the honor of being in two dear friends weddings this spring , my mom will be having a reception after her beach wedding, and I just added another to the list. My stepsister called last night to tell me that she is engaged!!! What a surprise. I had just found out that they were thinking about getting married during Christmas.
I have always wondered what it would be like when one of us girls gets married. I have three sisters and a brother. I know that whatever men join our family are in for a real treat! All of my sisters and I are not exactly the quiet passive type. I have had visions of future family gatherings with all of us women in a room having a heated conversation, being pretty loud, laughing obnoxiously, and spouses in another room drinking large amounts of alcohol in an attempt to survive the beautiful dysfunction that is my family.
The new brother, Scotty, is a wonderful man. He loves my sister, Kelsey (we have the same name, its awesome, which is why I sometimes specify her as my stepsister) in wonderful ways. He lets her be the strong woman she was created to be and challenges her to live into her full potential.
Scotty you're a winner. Welcome to the family, you have no idea what you are getting yourself into. Don't worry, in the midst of all the drama, there is a lot of laughter and deep care for one another. I am excited to have you be a part of it :)

P.S. I realize that I might be violating some blogging rule by using names, but until this site is paying my salary ( it won't change. I can't be bothered by the rules.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Church makes me cranky

It's true. I grew up in church that was not perfect, but I knew wonderful people there. They knew me and my family for the majority of my adolescent life. Even though I may not be on the same doctrinal page as most people there, whenever I sit in those uncomfortable pews there is a sense of being home, of being known (I guess having been known, in the past tense, I haven't been able to share much of my life with people there since I have been in Seattle, there is of course exceptions to this, hi Erin).
I have tried my round of consuming church and 'church shopping.' But that is all it has been, consuming, my commitments at school kept me incredibly busy (in a very not balanced way) and I was never really able to invest in a church. The idea of going to church and needing to form deep relationships seems exhausting. See, I have a wonderful faith community here at school. It doesn't take place on Sundays and there usually isn't dimly lit rooms with emotional acoustic worship music. I am in a class right now where we are learning about hunger, its causes and our responsibilities to it as Christians, this feels like 'church' to me. I have wonderful friends of deep faith who help me ask the hard questions and give me the look when I am being ridiculous and need to calm down. It is not Christians that make me cranky, it is something about what takes place on Sundays that I feel so much anxiety about.
I take church pretty seriously and I want to be in a place that I can commit to and share my life deeply with the people there. This doesn't happen after a couple of Sundays and I get nervous that I will start going somewhere and then realize something about their doctrine that I just can't be a part of. The way I know and experience God has changed in a lot of ways these past four years, and the journey has been a beautiful, painful, mess. I want to be in a place where I can experience and offer grace, where we are all working together to love the poor widowed and the orphaned, and we can honor the diverse ways in which we reflect God's image.

All of that to say, I don't have a consistent church yet, I've found a pretty great group of mennonites that I think are doing a lot of these things well. I'll let you know how it goes.

Friday, January 18, 2008


I just watched a documentary called "Dreamworlds 3". It is a documentary that shows the harmful messages in hip hop and rock videos and how what is acted out in film gets translated to real life. I am not going to explain all of the points made in the film because I won't do them justice and it really is the kind of thing you just need to watch for yourself. Ugh, I have so many thoughts about this I don't even know where to begin. I think that I will just chat about one of the concepts that alarms me most. The complete objectification of women in these videos. I (and I think most women) try to view ourselves as whole people who have intellect, emotion, desire, spirituality, passions, and sexuality. We are not just our sex appeal and the currency that that provides. It is alarming to me that as humans we can see each other only as objects. I know the word "objectification" gets thrown around a lot, but when we think about it as not seeing the humanity in another person it seems much more degrading. There is a lot more for me to say and I am sure I will at some point, but this will be it for now.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Just one of those days

It's just been a funk of a week. Which is code for really shitty. Ok, I will stop being quite so dramatic. I have food on my table, a wonderful apartment, and a beautiful soul of a roommate. It just seems that all of the little drama's are adding up to the 'bleh' feeling. A friend's parents are going through a messy divorce and leaving in the wake five beautiful children. I had a frustrating conversation with the madrastra with a healthy reminder that my family will always be a bit crazy. I've had some intense meetings, the interactions have been fine, but the subject is a bit much sometimes. The wonderful children I nanny for are going through stage where my presence seems to be the doom of their life.
But there have been some really wonderful moments. Greenlake with the Sophia women is always a healthy reality check in the world of evangelicalism I exist in. Although the children I nanny for are a bit sassy right now, I did get to spend a precious hour with a certain sweet red head reading stories about freedom. My mom let me be a bit of a brat on the phone and kindly suggested that we talk when I wasn't so angry and then when I called back she thanked me for making her think. In the midst of the family craziness my dad does try to take care of me (I don't exactly make this very easy). I get to watch Holly and Dustin be really sassy and really patient and it gives me hope that there are relationships where you can be your real self.

Ok, I must go be a college student and read Comte.


I feel that realistic expectations are always important. So let's be real. . .

1. I am a bad writer, and sometimes I try to be creative and witty which usually leads to more bad writing. I am sorry, but you will just have to deal.

2. Sometimes I say things that make me seem like a polarized brat, but in real life I think I am a pretty nice person. I can usually understand the other side in most situations, I'm just working on not apologizing for the things I think.

3. I use foul language. Many a people have tried to hold me "accountable" for this. It doesn't work.

4. I try to love God and my neighbor, but it is usually pretty messy and pretty irreverent.

That is all for now, but I am sure there is more.


Dear Blog,
I am sorry it has taken me so long to commit to you. I was bit nervous, nervous that I would tell you things in a moment of rash judgment about the world and then I would be misunderstood. This will probably happen, but I have decided to risk it. The other reason is a bit more shallow. I have broken up with my TV. It wasn't a tragic ending he was just too expensive to maintain. I no longer have hours of Jon and Kate Plus 8 to turn off my brain. That is why I have chosen you. I must have a way to distract myself from homework and other productive things. I hope we are a good match blog.