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Where to next?

[Here be a post from that blog I tried to start summer before last but gave up on after google combined all my accounts and funkiness ensued. Yes, I’m adding more posts to this blog by sort of cheating. Part of the proceeding entry applies to where I am now, though. So I’m not really cheating.]

June 24, 2011

The title of this post has been the question of the month for…well, two months now. To stay in Texas, or not to stay in Texas, that is the question. Whether ’tis nobler in the mind to suffer the stings and burns of outrageous insects/plants, or to take arms against a sea of sunburns, and by vacating end them. For now, I’m going with option B.

For those who don’t know yet, I’ve taken a job as a multi-media technician (fancy term for driver/grunt/projector setter-upper) with Camfel Productions. Starting in August, I’ll be driving around a 5-state region with another female technician showing a 40-minute video (produced by Camfel) at school assemblies. We’ll mostly be living in hotels and get to go sight-seeing during our time off. I probably shouldn’t be this psyched about living out of a van for the school year, but I’m super excited!

Sooo, since my internet access may be spotty come August, I’m jumping on the “I’m starting a blog to update multiple people at once/I feel lazy” bandwagon (no offense to other bloggers. That’s just my reason). Stay tuned for the adventures of Reeb and the Unfortunate Soul Who Ends Up Touring With Her.

 
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Posted by on January 3, 2013 in Camfel

 

While On the Road (or: Why I Want an E-reader)

And now for something completely different.

In an effort to expand my reading repertoire, I have compiled the following reading list from my own browsing and recommendations by fellow bibliophiles. A handful are re-reads, but most I have not read before. For series, I listed the first book followed by the series’ title in parentheses.

Devotional/spiritual growth/theology:

The Cost of Discipleship, Bonhoeffer

Orthodoxy, Chesterton

Three Free Sins, Steve Brown

Not A Fan, Kyle Idleman

Simply Christian, N.T. Wright

The Pursuit of God, A.W. Tozer

The Knowledge of the Holy, A.W. Tozer

A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life, William Law

Celebration of Discipline, Richard Foster

The Great Divorce, Surprised by Joy, etc., C.S. Lewis

Personal growth/self-improvement:

The Art of Living, André Maurois

What Color is Your Parachute?, Richard N. Bolles

Fired to Hired, Tory Johnson

Boundaries, Cloud and Townsend

Fantasy, sci fi, allegorical fiction:

Pilgrim’s Progress, Bunyan

Lillith, MacDonald

Till We Have Faces, Lewis

Miss Peregrin’s Home for Peculiar Children, Ransom Riggs

Real Story (Gap Into cycle), Stephen Donaldson

Beyond the Summerland (Binding of the Blade), L.B. Graham

The Color of Magic (Discworld), Terry Pratchett

The Wee Free Men (Discworld), Terry Pratchett

The Skin Map (Bright Empires), Stephen Lawhead

Good Omens, Pratchett/Gaiman

The Eye of the World (Wheel of Time), Robert Jordan

Black (Circle series), Ted Dekker

The Forge of God, Greg Bear

Pattern Recognition, William Gibson

Howl’s Moving Castle, Diana Wynn Jones

100 Cupboards (series), N.D. Wilson

In the Forests of Serre, Patricia McKillip

Sandry’s Book (Circle of Magic), Tamora Pierce

Other categories to be added whenever I get around to launching new facebook polls. Stay tuned!  [Also, I recognize that the definitions of these categories is somewhat fluid and any given book could fit into multiple categories. This is simply how I’ve chosen to group them.]

 
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Posted by on November 29, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

In the absence of a can opener

I first encountered the Third World at the age of five. Or six. Probably five.

Dad was attending the US Army Sergeants Major Academy at the time. We lived on Aero Vista Blvd, Ft. Bliss (El Paso), TX and went to Biggs Chapel for church.

Around Easter one year, Biggs chapel organized a mission trip to some of the poorest sections of Jaurez, Mexico, and my parents, my sister, and I participated. Given that Mexico is a grand total of 0-20 miles away from anywhere in El Paso, international mission trips here weren’t the logistical Goliath that they are for some churches (that’s changed a bit in recent years).

As I was only five (or six, but I’m pretty sure I was five), the trip registered less as a sequence of events and more as a series of questions and impressions that I was only able to understand years later. So, here is an account of my first mission trip, as remembered by my five-year-old self:

Someone had said the houses would be made of cardboard, which sounded like a strange and impractical proposition to me as cardboard wouldn’t be much use in the rain. It made a little more sense once I saw that most of the 3-4 foot tall boxes that stood in for houses had scraps of metal for a roof and a variety of walls ranging from just cardboard to wooden pallets insulated with cardboard, with a few metal walls thrown in. The second thing that struck me was how many little metal-topped boxes there were in the “cardboard city”. The first was the kids playing on their house roofs and how I wished I could play on the roof of my house.

Our first stop (and the part of the trip I best remember) was at the end of a neighborhood street, where we passed out canned goods to the adults and candy and snacks to the kids. I was with mom, passing out the goody bags. Four mental pictures I remember specifically.

-At one point I looked up at the line of kids in front of us, most of them probably around the same age as I was, and couldn’t see any of them smiling. I would have been smiling if someone handed me a bag of treats, so that seemed odd to me.

-The second mental picture is of looking down the packed dirt “street” and seeing kids running toward their homes, presumably to tell their families about the people handing out food, and running up the street toward us.

-The third picture is of a woman walking on the electrical wires lying haphazardly on the ground. Until this point, I was under the impression, probably from cartoons, that touching any kind of electrical or telephone wire meant electrocution and death. Which is probably just as well, because had I known about insulated wiring, I would have been more tempted to climb telephone poles.

-The fourth mental picture is of looking over to the other side of the street and seeing other people from our group handing out bags of canned food to the neighborhood adults. Ever the pragmatist, I asked mom or dad, “Do they have can openers? How are they going to get the food out?” (#firstworldproblems. Oh wait, hashtags didn’t exist in 1995)

After passing out food, we visited a nearby church. I remember thinking it was cool that we knew the same songs as the song leader, even though we were singing in different languagues.

And that was my first mission trip. Though my five-year-old self didn’t quite know what to do with the experience, my older-than-five self has been able to take meaning and insight from it. I now know that extreme poverty can bring despair. Despair can keep you from smiling when someone gives you free candy. You might run toward the strangers handing out food because you haven’t eaten for more than a day. If you touch a telephone wire, you probably won’t be electrocuted (but it’s still not a good idea to play around wires). If you’re hungry enough, not having a can opener won’t stop you from eating a can of green beans. Lastly, there is extreme poverty outside of the First World. But the poor in riches can also be poor in spirit; and there the love and grace of God abounds mightily.

 
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Posted by on October 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

My very first exiting of North America

The first time I went overseas was when my dad was stationed in Germany for the last time. It was not a very memorable trip, as I was six months old when we crossed the pond. Dad worked at Nelson Kaserne in Neu-Ulm, and we lived in Ulm.

Things I remember about Ulm:

…nothing, really.

About a year later, we moved to Bimbach in Hesse (sort of the middle of Germany) for 1 1/2-ish years. Dad worked in Fulda.

Things I remember about Bimbach:

Our top-floor appartment with slanting ceilings. The balcony overlooking a field. The field becoming a construction site (it was very exciting to watch). The park down the street with a slide that (at the time) seemed very tall and scary. Looking at the chickens in a backyard bordering the park. The time we went camping in Holland (We listened to Psalty tapes on the way there. Sleeping in a tent was thrilling at the time. Oh, and there are lots and lots and lots of flowers in the Netherlands.) Probably other things, but those stand out.

I sort of remember the flight back to the States. I was three by then and excited about moving to this new and exotic place called North Carolina.

 
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Posted by on August 27, 2012 in Uncategorized