Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Marriage, Grief, & Loss

Today I went to what I thought would be a marital therapy workshop that H. Norman Wright was leading. There was marriage therapy discussion for the first hour, but then turned to Grief & Loss/Trauma counseling. It was great, but I wasn't really prepared for it. It was very emotionally draining, especially since I've been on edge a lot lately. For example, after putting the crib together I put my hand on the mattress where I pictured our little girl sleeping and tears were right there. If I'm alone and think about meeting my daughter, I'm simply overwhelmed.

Anyway, I'm so glad to have this training and really came to realize that so many people are hurting in ways I didn't know of before. Another thing that Dr. Wright talked a lot about was his dog and how he uses him for for therapy. It completely reinforced to me that we need to get a dog as soon as possible and made me cry thinking about my childhood dog. Don't worry, I wasn't being ridiculously sentimental today, all of the 170 people there cried multiple times throughout the day.
With only 33 days left here is the latest picture of Carolyn's belly:

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Ellsbury

I'm sure it's already been over the media in Portland, but I just made the connection while watching the Red Sox win the ALCS that Jacoby Ellsbury is from Oregon (Madras & went to OSU). It's cool to see him doing so well as a rookie for such a great team.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Henry's, Pizza, & RAs

It has become tradition for my RA retreats that thewhole RA team sit in a hot tub together or lake and drink the best root beer in the world, Henry Weinhard's (which has to be imported because it isn't sold in Arkansas). Though drinking Henry's was obviously a major highlight we had a great rest of the retreat too. We set a vision for the year, debriefed the semester so far, watched Transformers, and really relaxed a lot. On the way home I was talking with Carolyn and was again amazed that I get paid to do this. I'm very thankful for my team and the opportunity to be here at JBU. Here is a picture of us at Pizza Hut for dinner after Carolyn joined us on Saturday.

Notice the random goofy haired guy getting in our picture? He was just friendly I guess.
Extra: Click here for a great review of Henry's quality.

Friday, October 19, 2007

RA Retreat

Today I'm off for the weekend for the J. Alvin RA retreat. It should be a good time of relaxing. Carolyn's going to come join us Saturday and we'll be back Sunday afternoon. I'm praying this will be a good time for team unity, vision casting, and relaxation for the guys.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

First Sighting

Tonight at IGA I saw the first sighting of the Holiday Hawk. It gives me warm fuzzies thinking about the Holiday season and Sierra Mist Cranberry Splash is the first sign.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Sports

I realized the other day that I enjoy watching almost any sport. I've really been enjoying the baseball playoffs, especially watching the Red Sox. This is a very strange thing for me because until 5 years ago if you would've asked me to watch baseball on TV I would've replied, "I'd rather watch paint dry." Now, I find myself checking scores and watching the games. I've always loved watching Basketball, but last year's NBA playoffs were probably the first time I watched without the Blazers being in it. Here comes the thing I've never been able to admit, I sometimes like watching NASCAR too. I know it's just cars going in a circle and it's a total hickville thing to do, but I like cars and I find it intriguing. So, there is my confession for the day. Bring on the Arkansas jokes.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Baby Update 32 1/2 Weeks

We just got back from the Dr.'s office. They did an extra ultrasound because Carolyn's stomach was measuring small. Turns out everything is great and we've got a 4 1/2 pound baby girl in there.

I've always had a unique ability with my expanding stomach. I wonder how much longer until Carolyn surpasses me?


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

8 Weeks Left

Only 2 months until we get to meet our baby girl! Click here to see the latest pictures and update on Carolyn's blog.

Pictures

The whole team in front of the house where we stayed.

The carnival crown gathered for prizes.

Downtown Chicago in front of Buckingham Fountain.

Chicago

It's been over a week since I got back from Chicago and I just wanted to give a quick summary on how it went. First of all, it was a really great trip. The aspect I enjoyed the most was getting to see so many quality ministries taking place to the various people groups throughout the city.

We left on Friday and it took about 11 hours to drive to the neighborhood of Lawndale where we were staying. Our flat was right next to Westlawn Gospel Chapel and on Saturday morning we helped put on a carnival for the neighborhood kids. This neighborhood is strictly African American except for the missionary family that lives there and is where MLK Jr. moved his family before his assassination to bring awareness to the poverty in the ghettos.

That night we went to Boys Town where we learned about Emmaus Ministries and spent about two hours in the gay district. The student I was paired up with and I ended up in a bar for almost two hours talking with a group of three guys. In the bar that night they were having karaoke and the show tunes were big hits. A cross dresser named Honeydew was very affectionate toward us and very disappointed we forgot our cameras and couldn't take a group photo. The guys we hung out with couldn't believe that two straight people from Arkansas would be in a gay bar in Chicago. By the time we left at 12:30 they wanted us to go with them to the next bar. This experience was very valuable in that it helped reinforce that homosexuals are people too who welcomed us to their party wholeheartedly. I doubt my church would make them feel as comfortable at a potluck.

Over the next two days we went to Little Village (the Hispanic area of town, which actually felt like I was in Mexico), Little India, and Chinatown. We were the only white people in all of those places and it was neat to see all the shops and culture so condensed in neighborhoods. After visiting these places each time there was a debrief in which we had great talks about racial reconciliation, immigration, and the challenges in reaching these communities with the love of Christ.

Over all it was a fantastic weekend that really stretched my perception of urban life. The 14 JBU students that went have been impacted and challenged in their perception of the world. I'm really thankful that I was able to go along and to participate in this great learning experience with them.