Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Last day of 2008...

I hope everyone has a great New Year's Eve and everyone has a blessed 2009! Usually I'm not big on resolutions, but Mike and I were talking about it last night and decided on a few together.
1. Daily devotions together.
2. Eating healthier/Working out more.
3. Eating out less
4. Following our budget

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Happy Holidays!


From the Marshalls!
I know Christmas is over, but I hope everyone has a very safe and fun New Year!! We had an excellent Christmas at home with our families. We spent Christmas Eve with the Marshall's. And Christmas day with my family. It was so nice to be with everyone and spend quality time sitting and catching up. I love the holidays!

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Sentimental..

I guess today I'm feeling a little sentinmental.
I think of Hesston all the time, but every now and then I really let myself drift back to Hesston memories. And today is one of those days. Back at Hesston, these six girls and I were inseperable. I was ALWAYS with at least one of them. They made my world a better place and they are some of the most quality girls I have ever met. It's not enough to say that I miss them. Life some days doesn't seem complete without them. I saw a few of them at our wedding, but weddings never provide enough time for catch up.

If you're reading this... I miss you. During this Holiday season, and always -- I'm thinking about you all.


Tuesday, December 16, 2008

We're back from our honeymoon! We had a great time in Jamaica. The sun, ocean, and Jamaican atmosphere was a great getaway from the Indiana winter. We didn't do anything too exciting, we both just wanted to relax and recooperate! We did just that. We ate alot (all-inclusive resorts tend to be serving food ALL the time!), we went to several shows at night, and walked the beach. During the day we pretty much planted ourselves by the enormous pool and laid out or played volleyball all day.


We got back late Friday night, due to flight delays. We made it back to our apartment around 2am. We got a few hours of sleep before we had to wake up and head to South Bend. Mike's mom called with great news - His sister was having her much awaited baby!! We were so excited, so we headed that direction to be there for the birth. On Saturday afternoon precious Madalynn Jean was born to Mike's sister and her husband. This makes Mike and I first time uncle and aunt! It's very exciting and we know already that she's going to be very very spoiled!!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Notes from a Newlywed...

Things are going well here in Merrillville! Mike is getting back into his work routine and I'm searching for a job. I've put in a few applications, but I continue searching. My prayer is that I find something that I really enjoy. It's been hard to think of Merrillville as home - so I'm hoping that once I establish my own routine it will help in that.
Today is Mike's day off, so we're deep cleaning the apartment. We leave for Jamaica on Monday, so it will be nice to come back to a clean apt!
I was recently asked what the hardest part of moving has been for me. I think the hardest part has been being away from my mom. I took our friendship for granted when I was still in Nappanee, but now I realize how much I look to her for advice or ideas. I have so much I want to do with the apartment and I keep thinking that "if my mom were here, she could help with this". But I trust that God needs us here for a reason, and when He's ready - He will get us back to the Nappanee area if that's in His will. (I hope it is).


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Newlyweds...


Our wedding was beautiful! The ceremony went great. I thought I would be so nervous, but since Mike and I saw each other before the ceremony in order to get all of the pictures done, I was so calm! It helped so much to be able to talk with him before everything got started!

I loved everything from our flowers to the brown tuxes, to how much fun the wedding party had! Our reception was amazing. I couldn't have asked for anything better! We had so much fun and I can't say enough how much fun I had with our wedding party!! I'm pretty sure we had the best.

We also had a lot of fun with our first dance!! We started out slow dancing to Michael Buble's "Everything", but in the middle of the song, our wedding party gathered around us and when the music scratched and cut out - Soulja Boy's "Superman" came on and we all broke into that dance! Then the music cut out again and we went back to slow dancing! It was hilarious and so much fun! It just set a great tone for our reception. We wanted the ceremony to be about us- Mike and I. And the reception to be about our friends and family. I hope everyone had as much fun as we did. Here's a few pictures of us dancing..
Here's the video of our first dance too! It's not the whole thing, but it definitely gives you an idea!

video

I also appreciated my bridesmaids so much for how well they did with our flower girl! Not only did I have the best wedding party ever, we had the cutest flower girl ever!! Kelsi was so much fun. Here's a few pictures of her:

Friday, November 14, 2008

7 Days...

One week til the big day! Everything is pretty much done except for the dreaded chore of packing up my room! I need to take all of my stuff to Merrillville next week and I still have so much to pack. I think it's been so hard for me to get movivated because I have no clue where I'm going to put it all in the apartment!! But it will have to get done, luckily Trina gets here tomorrow so I'll have plenty of help :) (thanks trin).

Tomorrow night is my bachelorette party! I'm so excited and so grateful to two of my bridesmaids for doing this for me! They have put alot of work into it already, and I'm excited to see what they have up their sleeves! We're doing things a little bit different, because at the end of the night we're going to meet up with Mike and his friends (he's having his bachelor party tomorrow night as well) so that all of my bridesmaids can get to know his groomsmen before the wedding. I'm kinda wierd and want them all to be friends before the wedding!! :) So that will be a good time to get to know each other. Plus I haven't met his best man yet, so I'm eager to meet him!

Have a great weekend!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

30 Days...

til I'm Mrs. Marshall! I can't believe how fast this time is going. Everyone warned me of this, but not everyone is doing/has done a long distance engagement before! I figured that time would drag due to the distance between us. But nope, the last five months have gone by so fast. Now we're down to less than a month til we say "I do!".

As the day gets closer, I think more and more about how our married life will be. We've completed our pre-marital counseling sessions, which gave us helpful tools to get through the tougher times. But on a day to day basis, I just can't wait to be with my best friend. I think that's going to be the best part about being married- having my best friend around all the time! I'm getting more and more anxious to move to Merrillville. As you can recall, I wasn't always so excited about it. But it's feeling more and more like home, and I've realized that wherever Mike is will be my home. I'm ready to find a job there and make our own lives.

Continue to pray as we finish up on wedding plans. I know the next four weeks will start to get a little more stressful and Mike and I won't be able to see each other quite as much as we have been in the past. Also, be in prayer for the NMC team that is now in Kenya. The Lengacher's have had so much on their plate in the last few weeks but still they chose to lead a team to the Baby Center. They have no idea how much I look up to them.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Invitations...

...have been sent out! We've gotten a number of RSVPs back already and I find myself anticipating many more as they come in every day! It's exciting! We had our last pre-marital counseling session today with Pastor Justin. That was a good feeling too. We left feeling more prepared and ready to dive into this new journey! We also spent time with Pastor Justin going over the layout of the ceremony, which made things seem so much closer! Both Mike and I are so ready to get things over with and put the distance behind us. That's what makes this even harder- the long distance. But we're making it work. We have our bedroom furniture and I'm going to take a couple pieces this week to the apartment to start getting moved in. The task of packing up my room is looming over me and I need to get a couple days off work and just dive in head first!

Thanks to my prayer warriors who continue to pray for Mike and I as we begin this new life together. We can feel your prayers. We love you all!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Praying

Praying for the Lengacher family. They are an amazing family who I have so much respect for and I look up to so much. Every last one of them. Right now they are suffering a great loss. Keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Huber Shower!

Last Saturday my aunts and great aunt threw me a great Bed and Breakfast themed shower! It was such a great time with my friends and family. We got so many great gifts that will be put to great use as we make the apartment our home in Merrillville. Mike was especially excited about getting the Magic Bullet blender system. He and I both can't wait to try it out! :)


We also got some of our dinnerware that we registered for, and some great odds and ends to decorate with and things to fill our home! Our kitchen is looking more and more stocked!


Thanks to all of you who have shown Mike and I so much love and support. I left the shower on Saturday feeling so blessed to have such wonderful people in our lives. I'll leave you with a picture of me from the shower. We played a game where the guests had about a minute to look over the items in my apron, and then I left the room and they had to write down everything by memory (I usually hate shower games, but I'll be honest these weren't too painful!)

















Thursday, September 18, 2008

Monday, September 15, 2008

66...

66 days til the Big Day!

I'm getting so antsy waiting for the day to get here. I'm enjoying all the time spending with my parents and family preparing for this event, but I'm honestly ready for it to be over too. I'm ready to start Day 1 of the rest of our lives together. But here's an updated on what we've accomplished thus far:

- We are in contact with our pastor and will start pre-marital counseling soon.
-The invitations are addressed
-The hotel rooms for the guests have been blocked
-Maps have been made
-My first shower is in a week and a half
-Bridesmaid dresses are being altered
-I have my first alteration appointment this weekend
-Hair/Make up appointments have been made
-Met with and reserved our DJ
So we are on the ball, now November just needs to get here! I have a feeling the month of October will fly by though!! We have a wedding the second week of October so I know that will really get us ready for our day! I'm in need of some help though. I'm looking for the perfect song for my dad and I to dance to at the reception. I don't want anything cheesy, too overly sappy, and I definitely need something original. I don't want any "you're my hero" or "butterfly kisses" songs being played. I want something that is completely us and completely original. Any suggestions??

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Kenya

Pastor Dave and his wife Christy, Margie Helmuth, Jamie and Jolinda Lengacher, and Dan and Dana Jacobs left for Africa. They are going to be there this week to help set up new plans for a water project to try and lower the monthly cost of water for the center.

Follow their travels here.


Friday, September 5, 2008

Blessed...

I recently created a "wedding to-do list". Oh boy, am I ever getting overwhelmed! I've been working 50 hour weeks at work, then trying to come home and get wedding things accomplished, which is hard when the stores close at a certain time. So tomorrow is my day off and I'm really looking forward to getting things done! I need to finish addressing the invitations and really get set on a centerpiece. I keep going back and forth with some things and I just need to make a decision. Yesterday was a much needed break though. Mike's mom, Bonny, and I took the day off and headed to Merrillville for Mike's birthday. His grandmother is in town from Florida, so we met up at Mike's great aunts house near Merrillville to have dinner with her, his grandma, and one of their sisters. It was a great chance for me to meet his extended family. We also had a mini shower for us, because his grandma brought so many gifts along with her since she won't be able to be her for a couple of our showers! It was so nice of her! We got some really cute odds and ends, plus a crock pot and tv trays. She also had a Christmas ornament made for us and a decorative plate with the date of our wedding and our names on it. I could have cried I felt so blessed in that moment. Our first planned shower is in a couple of weeks so this made me excited for that!

Hopefully tomorrow I get a lot accomplished and get some of our vendors called. This wedding planning thing is overwhelming but I'm so excited for the day to finally be here!

Monday, August 25, 2008

OUR INVITATIONS OUR IN!
LET THE ADDRESSING FUN BEGIN!!!

Friday, August 22, 2008

Three months from today I'll be Mrs. Michelle Marshall. It's getting so real and I'm getting more and more excited. I'm patiently waiting for our inviations to come in, then I'll be busy addressing them! But at least I'll feel like I'm getting something accomplished. This waiting game isn't much fun!

Since school has ended I've had more time to think about wedding things, and also enjoy this time of the year. I'm starting a list of books that I want to read, because now I can actually read for fun. Any suggestions???

Friday, August 15, 2008

I was so productive yesterday regarding wedding things!!
My mom, grandma and I headed to Elkhart yesterday morning to start the process of ordering our wedding invitations. I had no idea how overwhelming this might be. I knew the style I wanted, I had been looking before, but I found myself getting so frustrated. I knew what I wanted the invitations to look like in my head, so why couldn't I find something like that in one of the many books surrounding me!! In the end, I finally found one that goes great with the wedding colors. It's simple, timeless, and elegant. Can't wait for you to see them! :)

We then headed to Stephenson's to pick up my bridesmaid dresses. I got a call last week saying they were finally in. I was a little nervous, because when I ordered them, I could only see the style of the dress. I had picked different colors for the dress, but they didn't have it in stock so I had to trust the little 2x2 swatches of color. But they look great! I'm so excited about them and can't wait for my girls to see them.

98 days!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Merrillville

I'm hanging out at Mike's apartment in Merrillville this weekend. I came last night after work, and he's working this afternoon. So I'm just cleaning and trying to visualize where I'm going to put all of our stuff once I move in. The truth? It doesn't feel like home. I know that it won't for awhile. It's just hard to picture all of our things in this small apartment. I realize that it will be fine and that after I decorate and put that "homey" touch to it, it will be fine. But in Merrillville in general it's hard to make it feel like home.

But if home really is where the heart is -- then my home is wherever Mike is.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

One More!


Do you see that countdown on your right!?

One more day of school!!

One more day of my college career!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Jamaica here we come!
Our honeymoon is booked as of today!

Today was an exciting day for Mike and I. Not only did we book our honeymoon, but we went with his sister (Joey) to her ultrasound. Joey and her husband are having their first child and guess when her due date has been changed to? One week before our wedding!!! Of course we didn't know this until a few weeks ago (since it has been changed), or else we would have probably planned a little better!! But we went to her ultrasound and saw our new nephew or niece for the first time! I was in awe and completely overwhelmed with emotion. God amazes me.

Friday, August 1, 2008

As I come to the close of my college career (one week left...), I have been doing a lot of thinking. A lot of soul searching. I feel like for my entire life I've been running, no - chasing after something. A goal. A prize. In this case, my bachelor's. I've been sprinting to try and accomplish this goal, to win this prize. But now that I almost have it - what for? I know that a college education is great and will help me with the job search. And I am proud of myself. But now I just wonder what do I run after now? All this time I've been chasing after something that I've wondered if I really want. Maybe that's not what I want to say. I guess I wonder what I want FROM this college education. Yes, that's it. What is it going to do for me now?

A good friend reminded me that I'm living for today. So today, I'm chasing after my new goals.
To be a better friend. A hard worker.
A better fiance. A more loyal Christ-Follower.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Wedding Updates

Wedding planning as been in full swing this summer. I had to put them on hold a little bit because of taking so many summer classes, but as my classes come to a close (11 days left!) I'm starting to realize how much other stuff we have to do yet! The major things are done...
-Have my dress
-Ordered bridesmaid dresses
-Finally settled on a florist and put down our deposit
-Have a vocalist
-Picked out tuxes
-Registered (Target and Kohls)
-Narrowed down the invitations to a few
-Reserved the church and reception hall
There's more that we've done but you don't want to hear about all of it! But the bigger things are settled. And my mom found her dress a month or so ago. Bonny (Mike's mom) found her dress while in Vegas on vacation a few weeks ago. Yesterday Joey (Mike's sister) found her dress! Finding a dress for Joey was a little more difficult, because at the time of our wedding Joey will be 8 months pregnant. But she found a great dress that she is comfortable in. I'm so excited! My first shower has been planned on my Mast side of the family for the end of September. I even checked my registry last night and a couple things have been bought for us!! It's starting to feel real, and I just can't wait for November 21st.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Engagement Pictures!

We had our engagement pictures taken on Monday by Amanda (Fales) Shaw. They turned out great. We're both so happy with them. Enjoy these favorites and you can see more of them on my facebook.



















Monday, July 21, 2008

Wedding Updates

My life still consists of school, wedding, work. But today I'll focus on the wedding end of things (mostly because that's more fun to talk about!). We have so many of the big things done and I'm so thankful for all that my mom has helped me with! I can't imagine planning a wedding completely on your own. It's so great to have my mom off work this summer (Since she works at the school) to help with all the details. The bridesmaid dresses are ordered, I have my dress, the tuxes are picked out, the caterer is booked, our honeymoon is in the works (Jamaica), and the florist is set. Now we just have to find a DJ. Any suggestions?? DJs are so expensive I'm realizing. It's frustrating. OH! We also had our engagement pictures taken today by our photographer. I'll get those up as soon as I get them. All in all, things are going smoothly. My first shower is planned for the end of September and I'm so excited!! Now if I can just get done with school !!!

Thursday, July 10, 2008


Well, it's been a long, emotional week. Travis' funeral was an amazing tribute to the man he was. I feel like those who didn't know Travis the way we did were able to leave feeling as if they were best friends. That was my first military funeral, and it made me feel a little more patriotic. I have a greater sense of pride, respect, and honor for our troops and our country. Which is exactly the effect that Travis would want to have on a community. He will be missed, but I have a feeling that his death won't be in vain. He's a hero. We will always remember him that way.


Sunday, July 6, 2008

Proud

I couldn't have explained the sight any better than Rob did in his blog. Read it, soak it in. Some days I can't wait to get out of this small community, but on mornings like this morning, I thrive for a sense of one-ness like I experienced. I'm so proud to be apart of something bigger than myself. Just as Travis makes us proud, I know that today, He's proud. Just as I'm proud of every church leader who let their churches out early, every student who dropped what they were doing to walk to the town square, every parent who brought their children to teach them about freedom, and every person who was there today - who took a moment to honor a hero. Our hero. I didn't see a flag draped casket this morning turn on Elkhart street, I saw Travis, I saw his smile. I saw him laugh. I saw him the way I choose to remember him. The Travis that didn't turn his back on me when my world was falling apart.

We honor you today Travis. Today, tomorrow, and forever.

Please continue to pray for the Hunsberger's, and his wife Hannah.
Visitation is tomorrow from 2-8 and Tuesday from 1-3 at Nappanee Missionary.
The funeral is at 3:00 on Tuesday afternoon.

Also be praying for those in attendance at the funeral. Pray for a certain group of Travis' guy friends. I pray that they will have open hearts and ears as they hear the message.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Homecoming


Tomorrow morning Travis is coming home. He'll be arriving in Wakarusa around 11:00am. I'm asking you to please come support the Hunsberger Family and line up on Waterford street to welcome Travis home. Although, this is not the homecoming for him we wanted, this will show our commitment and love for him as they take him to the funeral home. I encourage you to come out and join us.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Selfless Sacrafice

My heart has been heavy this week with the news of Travis. It seems ironic that the 4th of July is just a few days away. I read Rob's blog tonight and shed quite a few tears at his words of thankfulness for soldiers just like Travis who have given their lives for this country. This July 4th, during the fireworks, I won't be thinking of the fun I had that night, I won't be thinking of the people around me. I'll be thinking of Travis. His family. His wife. I'll be thinking of the rest of the armed forces who lead our country without recognition. Rob made a comment in his blog that I have thought since the moment I heard about Travis. I see Travis at the gates of Heaven being greeted by God. I picture God wrapping his arms around Travis and whispering in his ear - "Well done my good and faithful servant. Well done." Then I see that grin. That famous Travis grin that we all have commented on in the last few days.

In Rob's blog he says this, "From what was shared with us, Travis had a few hours after the accident before he passed, and he spent his final words sharing his love for his wife, his family, and his God. He said he was proud to give his life doing what he truly loved: defending his country. What a beautiful example of selfless sacrifice, just like Jesus made for each of us on the cross."


I cried as I read Travis' last moments. I weeped for his wife. I can only imagine how badly she wanted to be there with him, holding his hand. Kissing him one last time. I cried for his family who would have done anything to be there in that moment as well. But mostly, I cried because of Travis' faithfullness to his call. His selfless sacrafice. You are our hero Travis.


Well Done Travis. Well done.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

We'll Miss You...


Travis Kent Hunsberger


We will miss you Trav. Your smile and laugh was contagious. It just doesn't seem fair to be cut so short. You died doing what you loved, though, for a country you loved. Thank you for being so willing to do that for us.




My fondest memory of Travis is right after Nick died. We were at the viewing and I just couldn't bare to leave Nick's side. His family had left, my family was leaving, and all that was left was me, Chris Roelandts, Travis, and Brandon Rummel. This was my only time alone with "Nick" and I just needed to have this time. Travis understood that. He stood right behind me, ready to console me. I wasn't the last one to leave the church that night, because Travis made sure he left with me. In the weeks after, I got random phone calls from Travis just to check up on me. I dont' think he ever knew how much I appreciated his efforts at the viewing and phone calls after. But now Nick has a friend in Heaven. You are loved and will be missed Travis.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Child's Impact


I've found myself thinking alot the last few days of my Kenya babies. As Mike and I consider places for our honeymoon, I can't help but think of going back to Kenya to spend a week with the babies and helping out around the center. Financially, I know that this won't happen. But I can't help but think about how great it would be to see all of those darlings again. They just make my heart and soul happy.


Jolinda told me a couple weeks ago that my favorite little Luke is in the beginning process of being adopted. I had such mixed emotions when she told me! I was happy, because this means he'll have a stable life ahead of him filled with family, shelter, and love. But I couldn't help but be a little sad knowing that I wouldn't be seeing him again. This is the chance and risk you take when you go on short term missions trips and work with children. You risk getting attached to a child only to never see them again. I knew that risk. But my heart is telling me otherwise.


It's amazing how a child who can't even talk yet can have such a big impact on a person, and he'll probably never even know it. I pray for his future, and the rest of the baby's futures. I pray for the hearts of the ones who are preparing for another Kenya trip. I pray that one day maybe I'll have the impact on someone that Little Luke had on me. I pray that one day, I'll have a son that will have the light of Jesus in his eyes, just like Luke.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

I've been lacking motivation for school lately. My grades are slipping a bit, and if I want to get them up I'm really going to have to work hard these next couple weeks. But somewhere amongst wedding planning, visiting Mike, and work I lost my motivation to care about school. I am so close to being done (everyone keeps reminding me) but it doesn't matter when I feel so far from August 8th. It's almost annoying when people keep reminding me of how close I am to finishing. Easy for them to say. They aren't the ones doing it!

On the bright side - Trina comes home this weekend!! I'm going to Indy on Sunday to pick her up. I'm so excited to see her. She moved to Washington last August and I haven't seen her since. It will be great to have her here and have her help with picking out bridesmaid dresses and such. I'm really excited. I just need to get things done before she gets here!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Wedding Planning.
Work.
School.
Homework.
This is pretty much what my life consists of now-a-days. And in this order. Which needs to change. I really need to start focusing on school and homework in order to get through these summer courses. Then I can focus on one thing at a time (or maybe at least work and the wedding!)

Wednesday, June 4, 2008


We have set a date! Friday evening, November 21st is the official date. We tried out other dates but this one just works the best. The church and reception hall our reserved and I even found a dress last night!! I didn't expect to find one at all, but I did. I love it. :) I'm so excited and I am having so much fun planning this wedding, but truth be told, I'm ready to just live our lives together.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Engaged!!

I SAID YES!

Mike proposed last Friday night!! And of course I said YES. :) I'm so excited to start our lives together. We have decided on a short engagement. We're looking into getting married on November 28th of this year. So we have alot to do!! But I wouldn't have it any other way. The ring is gorgeous, I love it, and the proposal suited us. He proposed on the front porch of his parents house (where we have spent many summer nights). I'm so excited.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

This breaks my heart.

Here's little Maria just two months ago.
The Chapman's will remain in our prayers.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Here I am, back in Nappanee. The one place that has always felt like home to me. The one place that when everything else seems like it's falling apart in my life- I can run to and it will get better. But not today. Not last night when I returned from Merrillville. Mike moved in, he's settled, and he starts work today. It was so hard to drive away from his apartment last night knowing that he was there by himself. Not knowing when I would see him next. I know that some relationships are much more long distance than ours. It's just going to be an adjustment for us. I know we'll be fine. I'm not worried about our relationship at all. But right now my heart is breaking because he's not a ten minute drive away. I pray that this year goes fast. And before we know it- we'll be married and we'll be laughing at how much we struggled through this time! 364 more days til he's back...


Thursday, May 15, 2008

Summer isn't meant for School.

I've (almost) survived my first week of summer classes. I have one more three hour lecture today, and then I'll be done for the weekend. Let me tell ya, summer classes aren't a walk in the park. It's not that they are hard -- I'm sure some are, but most of mine aren't bad -- but they are just SO boring! Sitting in a class for three hours learning about art history. Not exactly the way I wanted to spend my summer. But going to school for another semester next fall isn't how I want to spend my fall either. So I'll suck it up. It's wearing me out, that's for sure. I go straight from class to waitressing, to homework, to Mike to sleep. The only thing lacking in that schedule is my sleep. But Mike moves this weekend. Tomorrow after I get off work we're going to pack up his remaining things and move him to Merrillville. I'm going to spend the weekend with him to get him settled in, but it's going to be emotional. I'm not ready for him to move. I'm too used to seeing him everyday. I hate not knowing when the next time I'll see him will be. But, I've prayed and prayed about this and I know he's making the right choice. I know that we'll be just fine. God has it all in His hands. Sometimes I forget how little my problems must seem to a God who fixes BIG problems every second of everyday. He must think I'm a real whiner sometimes!!

I would appreciate the prayers for Mike as he makes this transition, moves, and starts a new job. I pray that he'll succeed and fall in love with his job. I pray that the distance won't be TOO hard on us and that we'll grow stronger- together. Thanks.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

So GLAD to be a GRAD!


Yes, my moment is bound to end. But not yet, I won't let it. This is my moment! My celebration! So that's what I'm doing! After graduation tonight my family went out to eat with Mike's family -- also the first time that they had met! (about time I know!) It went well and they both agreed it would have to be done again soon! So that's good!!

The ceremony went well. I didn't trip and fall on my face. I thought walking would be stupid since I still have classes to take, but it renewed my motivation a little bit and really gave me a sense of accomplishment. So what if I still have three months left. I have five years under my belt to be proud of. :)

I graduate tonight. It's kind of a short-lived joy. I start summer classes on Monday, but tonight I'm celebrating making it through five years of college. On August 8th, when I'm done with summer classes, I'll really feel the joy of graduation. So tonight, I'm just taking that step across the stage in honor of the five years, three schools, and multiple majors I've been through! :)

Friday, May 2, 2008

Refresh...


...Rejuvinate


Unwind...


...Relax

Finals are over. Summer classes start soon. It's time to gain a new sense of motivation.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Finished.

As of 6:30 tonight I'll be DONE with the semester! My finals haven't been too bad, I have two more today, but then I'm done. Until May 12th that is when I start summer classes - then a whole new round of stress will arise. But at least I'll only be working one job at that time.
Mike moves to Merrillville on May 15. It's coming up quickly, but he is excited to move on in with this job and his own place. I'm happy for him and I have no doubt that we'll be fine through the distance.

The job search still continues. I'm just trying to sit quietly and listen to what path God wants to lead me on.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Monday, April 14, 2008

Just a few more weeks of school. Things are starting to pick up and I'm trying to keep my head above water. I've tried to take my mind off of other things like the job search, my future, Mike's new job, etc. I have put in a couple applications at various social service agencies. We'll see what happens. My summer classes are scheduled. It's going to be a very busy and tiring summer. Mike moves to Merrillville around May 10th. I've come to terms with this and I'm excited for him and his new adventure. We'll make the distance work.

Last night at The Effect, Derry was talking to us about worship and what our idea of worship was. He did a great job exploring this topic and making us dig into the Word. Worship is a hard word to define, kind of like grace, because there's so many different ways to interpret it. Everyone has their own definitions. I found out though that the best way for me to hear and experience God is by serving or celebrating. I took this quiz that Derry gave us to learn more about the ways that we all experience God. It was interesting. Let me know how you experience Him best!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

I just got done watching the second annual American Idol "Idol Gives Back". I was looking forward to this episode this year, because it encourages people to get involved. It tugs at your heart, they educate you, and they pull you in. This year, after experiencing Kenya just 4 months ago, it especially broke my heart. I cried for the babies that I saw on the screen not just because they were hurting, but because I could put names to them. No, I didn't know that specific child, but that child looked like a child I met. Or that mother looked like a mother that I met while staying in Kenya. I cried for Luke. I cried for Lucy. I cried for Timothy. For Matthew. For Hannah. For the workers. For Kenya women.


At the end of the show tonight all of the American Idol contestants, along with a choir, got on stage and sang "Shout to the Lord". I stopped what I was doing, looked straight at the tv screen with my mouth hanging open and just thought "they get it!" they really get it! They realized that the real giver, healer, and creater is God. They got it! But then, I have to say I was thoroughly let down when Ben Stiller comes on right after they were done with that song and starts cussing. Of course they bleeped it out, but we all know what he was saying. Yes, he's a comedian. Yes, he was being funny. But also, he ruined a powerful moment. I don't blame him. I blame a country full of people who might not be ready to hear something so powerful.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Ever feel like your life has just gained a new direction, but with that new direction comes a whole new wave of uncertainty? That's what I'm feeling. Mike interviewed about a month ago for an assistant store manager job at Aldi's foods in Merrillville. Three weeks went by and so we thought that he didn't get it. He had come to terms with that. But last week the interviewer called and offered him the job, apologizing for the delay. Of course Mike took the job. So at the beginning of May, Mike will make the hour and a half move to Merrillville. He starts full time May 19th. He is really excited about this. He loves new challenges and this brings great reward as he has potential to move up in the business and within a few years- manage his own store. I'm so happy for him and proud of him. I haven't decided if I will try and find a job near Merrillville or not. He's not certain on how long he'll be there, because if what his boss says is correct, he can start training for a store manager position in just a year- then he could be transfered to a store back here. If that's the case, I would rather stay around here. We can do a year of distance.
As far as my own job searches go -- Hesston is at a halt. The people who I thought might be leaving the office so that positions would be open, have decided to stay. Therefore there are no positions open this year. That's ok, maybe it's just not the right time. So I continue looking for a job, probably around this area. I'm not as stressed as I was about it, I know that it's all in God's hands and His timing is perfect.
Oh! We're also not going to Vegas anymore, since Mike got the job. The rest of his family is going but him and I will not be going along. He doesn't feel like he should take off that much time right away. I agree. But that's money that we'll be saving!

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Kenya

I've been working on a powerpoint presentation of Kenya pictures for my parents Sunday school class. My dad and I have been asked to present our pictures and talk about our trip. This task of making a powerpoint has taken longer than it normally should, because I can't help but just sit and stare at the pictures of the babies. I realized how much I miss them!

This is a video that is posted on Jolinda's blog that she writes about the center (news, pics, updates). This video was put together by NMC and a past team that has traveled to Kenya.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

All is restored in Nappanee

Welcome back Taco Bell!! Oh how I have missed you. If you've ever wondered what would cause high school students to skip school on a Wednesday, factory employees to risk taking longer than their allowed half hour lunch, busy people to wait in in line for a half hour, and people to stand while eating because of lack of space - now you know. The re-opening of Nappanee Taco Bell!! It was crazy over the lunch hour but oddly enough - I found it somewhat of an honor to wait in the drive-thru line for over a half hour for my food. In a weird way, I felt like our community was coming together to welcome this business back. As if we were saying - a tornado can take our favorite restaurant, our homes, and our material things - but we will rise again. We are rising again. (ok I know it's just an open taco bell, maybe i'm getting too much meaning from it, but it was a moment to remember nonetheless).

As for my continuing job search - the admissions counselor job in Hesston has come to a halt. All the current counselors look as if they are going to be staying, so they will not be hiring anyone new at this time. But I've still been looking/applying for jobs in Kansas. I'm ready to move back out there. So please pray that I have faith that God will put me there if it's His will. And thank you all for your prayers as I was stressing out about finding a job. I have realized after much prayer that it's all in His hands and God's timing is perfect.

As I sit here sipping on my dr. pepper (fountain of course), I am reminded of a quote I heard once that goes something like "Everything has already been decided. It was know long ago what each person would be. So there's no use arguing with God about your destiny." It comes from the verses in Ecclesiastes 6. There's no sense in arguing or worrying about God's plan for my life - it's been decided and I choose to follow Him.




Wednesday, March 19, 2008

For the Record...

I realize that all of this is in God's hands. But I'm obviously having a very hard time putting that realization into action.

SOS

Ok, I'm sending out a SOS call to all my blogger friends! I'm stressed out. Big time. Like the kind of stressed out where you can't sleep, can't focus, and when someone brings up the thing that you're stressed out about- you burst into tears. THAT is the kind of stressed I am. I'm stressed about finding a job after graduation. I need some help from all those recent (or not so recent) college grads out there. I'm feeling completely under qualified for everything!!

I applied for an admissions counselor job at Hesston and while I'm hoping, wishing, and praying that it works out - I have to be looking/applying for other jobs too, just in case it doesn't. So, I've sent my resume to several (when I say several I mean more like 7-10) agencies and companies. But I've heard little or no response. My mom thinks I'm stupid to rely on emails. But alot of companies do everything online nowadays.

I know it's only March, but I absolutely hate not knowing what my life holds after June of this year. So - any advice/prayer/reassurance/JOB that you can give me. I'll take it.

Monday, March 17, 2008

I'm restless. I can't sleep. I have so many things that I'm thinking about that my brain has yet to go into "sleep mode" while the rest of my body is aching for some much needed sleep! I've realized that the graduating class of 2008 is at a HUGE disadvantage. This is probably one of the worst times to be graduating college with the economy like it is. No one is going to be looking to hire anyone for awhile. I've sent my resume to a couple places, but with no avail. I haven't heard even an email reply yet. Mike and I are moving forward in our relationship. With talk of marriage, weddings, and what the summer may hold for us in terms of moving, etc, we keep thinking that it would be much easier to have our lives more put together if we knew where our jobs would take us. Will I get the admissions counselor job in Kansas? Will Mike get the job he interviewed for in Merrillville? Should I move there if he does? It's enough to make me scream, let alone keep me up all night.

Anyone have a job for a Social and Behavioral Sciences major who is graduating in May????

Friday, March 14, 2008

I just received a monthly newsletter in the mail from an old high school friend. I get these every month and I always look forward to seeing what's going on in the life of him and his wife. What makes it more special though, is that at the bottom of every newsletter he always writes a short note to me. He makes some reference to something that is going on in my life that he has heard about and wishes me the best. At this point, since he's living in another state, this is our only means of communication throughout the year. Sometimes I think I take for granted how special just a simple sentence or two can be to someone. High school feels like ages ago, and you couldn't pay me enough to go back, however I did meet some very quality people there in the halls and classrooms of NorthWood. Some I have lost touch with, others I talk to from time to time, and there's just a few that I still see on a regular basis. Just today I saw a picture of a girl I went to high school with that I had forgotten about. I wasn't great friends with her, but we had mutual friends and always had a good time together. I know that in the last few years she's had some troubled times, but as I looked at her picture today I thought "wow, I have no idea who she is anymore. Even where she is. It feels as if I never even knew her." I'm sure that she would feel the same way if she came across my picture. What amazes me though is that the person I get the newsletters from - I think of him on a regular basis, especially when I receive the newsletters. And the girl - I have almost forgotten about her on accident. But still - they have a connection to me. They both keep me grounded. They have rooted me into this Northern Indiana life and they don't even know it. When I see their faces, I think of my past, a past that connects me to Nappanee. No matter where I end up.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Letting Go..

This week is IUSB's spring break. I couldn't be happier to have a break from classes, however, I would really like to use this time to get caught up on some assignments and even get ahead.

Lately I've been thinking alot about "letting go". I have such a problem with holding on to old emotions, hurt feelings, etc. that I find it extremely hard to let go. There's a song by Corey Crowder and in it he says:
"You can't find happiness if you don't let go."
Simple words, but so hard to do! I know that God has forgiven me for the wrong things that I have done, but I can't seem to forgive myself. It's something I struggle with on a day to day basis. And not just with wrong decisions that I've made. I have trouble letting go of friendships that have been lost, bad relationships, etc. I have a couple friends that our friendship used to be solid. But now, because of distance, we hardly ever talk. I put in a lot of effort to try and reconnect with these people, but unfortunately it's not reciprocated. Mike is always telling me that sometimes I just have to let go and move on. But I think "there's so much time and memories invested into that friendship. How can someone just let go?"
Letting go. Moving on. Breaking free. Maybe I need to start looking at it as a positive thing. Look at all I might gain instead of what I may be losing.
Anyway, that's my tangent for the day. I woke up this morning with a horrible stiff neck. I'm having quite a lot of difficulty turning to the right. So I think it's time that I figure out something to do for that.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Every Monday Matters

Alright another plug for a great campaign! :)
I've just been asked to be the Indiana leader for a movement called "Every Monday Matters". This campaign is to take an ordinary, dreaded, Monday - and turn it into something that can help make a difference. There's 52 Mondays in a year- this provides 52 chances to help someone. 52 ways to make a difference. So as I start to pour some effort into this campaign I'm going to be taking to my blog to spread the word.
Go here to get more information.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Snow, Snow, Snow

...It seems to be never-ending. I'm so ready for spring. Mike and my trip to Florida got me in the mood for warmth, sun, green grass, flowers. I'm ready for some nice weather! A plus though is that a couple of my classes were cancelled for today considering the weather!


I've been looking for a job lately for after graduation. I'm really interested in working in an adoption agency. So I spent the good part of yesterday afternoon searching the internet for agencies that had any openings or ones that I could send my resume to. I found a couple - one in Indianapolis and the other in Bluffton (Indiana not Ohio). They both are agencies based on Christian values and they also have people working for them that only have their bachelor's degree. So I know that they hire people without their master's degree, which is a plus! Once I get my resume updated I'm hoping to get in contact with these places. I'm such a scheduled person that I have to know what I'm doing at all times, and I hate not knowing where I'll be in the next few months. But I'm trying to let God guide me on that and realize that it's not me - it's all about Him. I'm just doing His work.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

To Write Love on Her Arms - INTRO.

I've been doing some research for one of my classes for a paper. I wasn't getting to involved in the paper until I came upon this organization that is starting a movement- what they call a Love movement- to reach the tired and broken young women of our world. The women who continue to hide in the shadows of their pain, out of fear that someone will know their secrets. No one was doing anything for these lost women. But now, To Write Love On Her Arms, is pushing the issues. And is trying to convince a generation that LOVE WINS.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

I'm not sure I'm ready to go back to class tomorrow. My vacation in Sarasota was great. Mike and I enjoyed the time together, time on the beach, in the sun, and the time spent with family. Mike didn't have the best of trips - he got the flu for about three days while we were gone, but he recovered nicely and was able to enjoy our last day in the sun. We spent the day at the beach and walking around Anna Maria Island. It was great to be able to spend some time together away from everyone else.

I did receive good news when I got home yesterday! I checked my blog and heard from Jolinda Lengacher (one of the leaders of our Kenya trip) that two of the babies have been adopted!! Benson and Mary were adopted from the baby center recently. They are a beautiful set of energetic twins. At first I found myself a little sad knowing that I probably wouldn't see them again, even if I do make it back to Kenya and the Center. But just as soon as that thought came in my mind, I shooed it away, because Benson and Mary are blessed with loving parents now!! They will be in a family setting - one that will be able to take care of them! Praise God!! Here's a picture of Benson and Mary. I ask you to pray for them as they adjust to their new living situation. Also keep the rest of the babies in your prayers as the staff at the baby center searches for great homes for them as well!