Friday, June 10, 2011

Why I Love My Serger

MY mom is very talented in just about anything. She can turn a bolt of fabric into very durable clothes overnight! When I was a kid living in New Zealand some of my most favorite memories were of my mom taking us to the fabric store and letting US choose the fabric we wanted our clothes to be made out of! Looking back now in pictures I'm not so sure it was the greatest idea to let US choose our own fabric because we came up with some wacky combinations! But we loved it! We would kiss her good night with folded fabric on her desk and in the morning she would have CLOTHES at the end of our beds! She brags now that she could make a pair of pants in 15 minutes!

My dad surprised my mom with this serger (pictured above) one day. He went to the a sewing centre in Browns Bay, bought it, and had it out of the box and sitting on her desk when she got home! She was SO excited! She used it to make most of our clothes while we lived in New Zealand! She brought it with her to the states (with a clunky converter my dad had made for her) when we moved and it hasn't had much use since...until a few weeks ago when I went home for a visit! We found it in the basement and mom and I cleaned it up! With some dusting and a little oil it works beautifully! My mom gave it to me and I have been making clothes with it like she did for me twenty years ago! So, this is why I love my serger :)

(Side note: I'd like to name it but haven't thought of one yet, any ideas?)

much love to all of you

Monday, April 18, 2011

15 days

I could bore you with my life as a student and the anxiety of pop quizes, group grades, and the bad self image that comes with being unprepared for a test but I won't do that to you, or to me either. Life is looking up: I have 15 more days until the semester is over...sure I still have to write two papers, a lit. review, take 3 comprehensive exams and continue weekly assignments but I can see the proverbial "light at the end of the tunnel" and it is bright and calling my name! The past few weeks my husband and I have shared conversations that can be summed up by this dialogue which took place last night:
Kyle: "I'm not sure I can finish this..."
Me: "You can too! you'll do great! (pause) Now, tell me I can do it too"
We're both in the same situation which is nice sometimes because we understand each other's needs...but as husbands and wives share stresses and empathize with each other sometimes it feels like a weight of two work loads on our shoulders. I think this is ok though, because in 15 days our feeling of freedom with be magnified by two as well.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

my new-old grand dad ted

Growing up in another country from each of my grandparents in different times in my life has made having a decent relationship with either set difficult. When I lived in New Zealand my mom's parents were my constant. When we moved to the States my dad's parents became the norm. I used to think having a relationship with at least one set was better than nothing. Now I see if I don't have a substantial relationship with both of them I lose half of my identity (not to mention really great stories about my parents).
Last year, while I lived in China, my Grandad Ted and I took interest in each other and skyped often (it helped too we were in closer timezones). At first it felt weird and mechanical because it had been so long and we didn't really know each other. With every chat, though, our conversations became more fun and enjoyable. Now I feel very apart of him and his life and I think he feels the same about me. After all of these years I feel like I have a NEW granddad ted and it's exciting! I love hearing his stories and seeing his view of the world. He was a sailor, a captain, then a harbor master and has been all over the world. 7-year-old Rebecca didn't know any of this!
He, in the last few years, transformed his kiwi orchard into a pasture and is raising "steers" - NOT cows - and he has two cats and a little corgi dog.
I'm excited about this new-old relationship :)

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

I don't want to be a Counselor

As many of you know I am in school getting my M.A. in Counseling at Harding grad. I really enjoy my classes and my professors are brilliant and really care about their students. It has been a good journey for me so far and I look forward each semester getting closer to graduation. The title of my blog post might not make sense to many of you and some might be thinking "why is she getting her M.A. in Counseling and not wanting to be a counselor?".

Basically I look at education as a journey. I made a mistake when I worked towards my undergraduate degree in Special Education...I thought I was working to become a special ed. teacher. Learning so many ideas in school I became a different person: Rebecca, the special education teacher.

Now I'm in counseling school and I don't want to get lost again. I don't want to just be a Counselor. Instead it is my goal to enrich myself with what I learn so no matter what job I have I can help people and not have to have the label of "Counselor" to do it.

So by the end of my schooling I want to be Rebecca - who knows a thing or two about marriage and family counseling and special education; and who is not too controlled by what she has learned to only be able to see life through the eyes of a counselor.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Old me New me

Re-entry has been interesting...I guess you don't know how much you've changed until you re-enter your previous culture.
We're living on campus at harding grad. and although the apartment is small it is so nice to have all our things in one place. While unpacking these boxes I'm reminded of our lives before. For one thing we have distinct personal boxes. The labels say "Kyle's books" or "Rebecca's stuff". This past year in China really meshed us together as one unit. I'm not sure if we packed our belongings again if we would need to specify whose stuff everything is because it's all OURS.
Another thing I've learned about myself is I'm shocked at how much stuff we have! Before we went to China we sold most of our things and we still have SO much more than we had in China. It's nice to have these things but it's hard, after seeing how the Chinese live, not to feel guilty for having nice things.
Although re-entry has been confusing and not so fun at times we're making it. It really helps to have friends who understand, family who loves us no matter how weird we are, and a God who loves, blesses and cares for us everyday.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Finding Peace

Our life is a crazy mess right now. Our stuff is in three different places over the country (Dallas, Atlanta, and Henderson), we've lived out of our backpacks for the past month and a half, we haven't stayed in the same place since visiting our families for over a week, we have a lot of possibilities but none of them are a sure thing yet. We've spent many nights weighing pros and cons and trying to make plans. We've been stressed, we've lost sleep...We're starting school in a few weeks and still don't know how we're going to pay the bills. All the while trying to adjust and re-enter into this familiar yet foreign culture we're moving home to.

With all this stuff going on you would think we would be out of our minds…God continues to give us peace with our current situation. He continues to provide a place for us to lay down at night. He continues to provide us with meals and enough gas to get us where we need to go…Our God is great, Our God is loving, Our God provides in an incredible way.

We are not comfortable, we are not established, we are not successful, we are not settled.

Today I've found strength and peace in Psalms 119:73-76:

Your Hands made me and formed me;
give me understanding to learn your commands
May those who fear you rejoice when they see me,
for I have put my HOPE in your WORD.
I know, O LORD, that your laws are righteous,
and in faithfulness you have AFFLICTED me
May your UNFAILING love be my COMFORT,
according to your PROMISE to your SERVANT.

God made me and formed me with his hands. He has a plan for us. He gives me peace and patience to excitedly wait for what he has planned for me.

Monday, April 19, 2010

A New Community

Tonight was the first warm night in a while. It was humid from a fog that seeped into our city but it felt refreshing. Kyle and I decided to go for a run. The campus we live in doesn't have a track but we've found one in the neighboring campus.
We discovered a new community on that dark track. There were all kinds of workouts being performed...some I'd never seen before! The young college guys would sprint around the track for a few laps. Satisfied with their run they'd go to the pull up bars in the center and start doing really fast sit ups. The young college girls, arm in arm, talked rapidly as they walked around the track or leaning lazily on the bars in the center talking on their cell phones. Older couples walked around the track backwards swinging their arms in huge motions across their bodies and then out again. One woman walked the entire track several times with her arms raised above her head the whole time. There were little children racing each other in the center being watched carefully by their grandmothers. And of course there was an army training for the new college students taking up all of the lanes on one part of the track. (In China all the college students must have army training their freshman or sophomore year.)
As you can imagine all these different activities made a regular run on the track quite an obstacle course! We plan to be regulars on this track and make some friends along the way.