This year has been one wild ride. I think I have learned more this year than I ever have in the past. About myself and about life.
In January I started what would be (so far) the hardest semester of my life. I took 17 hours of class, worked 20 hours a week, and taught kindergarten Spanish 2 hours a week. Let's just say I realized that I don't want to be a kindergarten Spanish teacher. I also started taking classes to get my endorsement to teach K-12 ESL (English as a Second Language) and if I have my choice, I will probably choose ESL over Spanish.
In late February I found out I got the internship I applied for with Casas por Cristo, and so I started preparing myself for what the summer would bring.
In March I headed to Acuña, Mexico to build my 4th house with Casas por Cristo for spring break. We took two teams and built two singles for a couple different families. It was so cold that week (40s) because it poured and we had all packed for warm weather. I remember Sharisse and I being on bucket duty and I just kept scooping rocks and sand to not think about how cold I was. I also remember laying on my cot at night shivering and not sleeping much. I can't even imagine living that way 24/7. Luckily my dad had packed an extra sweatshirt; even though it came down to my knees, I wore it and was warm.
In April, I finished teaching my kindergarten class and got to make each child a Spanish certificate, which they loved. The weird thing was, even though I struggled teaching so much, I knew I was going to miss those kiddos. I ran my first half-marathon in OKC with my time being 2:34. It was one of the coolest experiences ever.
In May, I graduated from Manhattan Christian College with my associate degree in biblical studies, and two days after finals ended, I boarded the plane for El Paso and what would be the best summer of my life (so far). My brother graduated soon after I did. I can't believe he is in college now!
In June, my dad came to El Paso to train to be a volunteer leader for Casas, so it was great to get to see him for a couple weeks! On top of the Casas internship, I went to church camp in June to help out with leading some high school students.
In August, I went to the Grand Canyon and finished my internship and came home only to have a week to rest and recuperate before heading back to K-State to start my senior (but not final) year. I think it was God's plan that this semester was a simple one, because I really had a hard time coming back from Mexico. I had only two Spanish classes, two ESL classes, one French class and no education classes, which are usually the more difficult ones.
In October, my best friend had her baby, Skysan, and I think getting to hold him was one of the coolest things I have ever experienced. Fresh out of heaven. It was like I was looking at a piece of God. I spent Halloween at a lock-in with a couple good friends, and spent most of my Saturdays at Bill Snyder Family Stadium watching the Cats play football. They are going to a bowl game this year!
I spent Thanksgiving at Cocoa Beach with my family, and got to spend some girl time with my sister, which was great. It was 80 degrees most of the time we were there. Amazing.
Finally. December. I ran my second half-marathon and clocked in at 2:08, which I was pretty excited about considering I only trained to 7 miles and didn't eat too well. I finished my 7th semester of college. 3 more to go. :)
I have been so blessed this year when I look back and see all the sweet things I got to do, and I'm realizing that life goes crazy fast. Do things that you dream about doing. Christ gave us life to have it to the full, so experience it!