Well dang! Here I am again. A year later. I feel like I wrote about 2010 like, yesterday. It's been kind of a rough year emotionally, but God is constantly teaching me, like usual.
In January, I came back from Mexico and got right into school and work. I took what K-State calls "Block 1" which is the first part of the education program. It's about 12 hours of classes that all have to do with education. I finished my Spanish classes required for my certification and also got to teach an 8th grade social studies lesson as part of my practicum for one of my classes. I loved it, but I think that I am definitely more of a high school teacher!
Over spring break, I headed to Acuña, Mexico, to build again with a small group from my church. We laughed a lot, cried some, and celebrated with another family that has been touched by Christ's love through Casas por Cristo. It was truly a humbling experience for me as I realized that I had forgotten much of what I learned as an intern, and had to relearn some of the building stuff!
This summer, I headed to Hawaii with my family. We spent most of our days on the beach, which was definitely fine by me. I had been taking a medication for my acne (which has overstayed its welcome...still) and had to stop taking it as the sun made my skin feel like it was on fire. After that I was able to just enjoy the sun! I learned stand-up paddle surfing, which was probably my favorite part of the trip. Amanda and I tried wind-surfing as well, and it was maybe the most frustrating thing I've ever done. Probably won't do that again.
The rest of the summer I worked pretty much full time at my job, which I love. I feel like I have family there and for the most part I really enjoy getting to go to work every day. I don't think a lot of people can say that about their jobs. I learned a lot about serving and trying to be Christ's example to the people I work with. I worked with the same people almost every day, so we got to know each other pretty well and probably even fought like family sometimes!
At the end of the summer, I spent back-to-back weeks in Florida and Seattle. We took separate flights to Florida, so my parents went ahead while Brandon and I were in charge of Amanda and her best friend...it was interesting! We laughed so much on the way there because it was like trying to get small children through the airport! Again we spent most of our time on the beach.
In Seattle, I got to see family I haven't seen in a while, which was great. It was just me and my mom that got to go, and we had an awesome time helping my grandma fix up her house and then just hanging out with my aunt, uncle, and cousin, and starting my teacher's wardrobe at the outlet malls.
Right after I got back, I started Block 2 at K-State, which is more intensive and a LOT of work. Someone told me it was easy and I think they lied! I spent 8 hours a week at the elementary school working with ESL students. Then on the other days I spent a few hours a day in the high school where I will be student teaching next semester. The kids there are great and I am so excited to get started! I had a project due every week, and then my massive unit plan (3 weeks of lesson plans and materials) at the end of the semester. I'm happy to say that I passed with flying colors! I never thought I would survive...but I did! Yay! After ten hours of work on my portfolio, I am ready to start student teaching. I have begun looking at jobs and am not sure at all where I'll end up. I kind of don't like to think about it! Honestly, if I could I would strap on a backpack and head for South America. But that doesn't exactly pay the student loans!
A couple weeks ago, I ran my fourth half marathon and got pretty sick to my stomach after. Two of my best friends ran as well and this was their first race...they finished strong! So proud of them! This is the second time I've been sick afterward, so I might just have to not run them anymore. I am hoping that next year I can move somewhere where I can still be active. I really want to try rock-climbing, so maybe somewhere mountainous?
Anyways, I leave for Juarez on the 26th and I'm so excited to meet another family and get to share Christ with them as well. I'm ready to serve and not shower and get dirty and get blisters and cry and laugh with close friends for a week. We have boxes of stuff to take down to help people stay warm. Thank you to everyone who donated funds, prayer, and warm clothing! I will definitely post about our trip after we get back.
Right after I return from Mexico, I'm headed for student teaching! I will be teaching Spanish 2, 3, and 4 to high school students and I'm pumped about it! I'm ready to finally get to put into practice everything I've been learning for the past five years!
After student teaching, I will be working at Camp War Eagle at Beaver Lake for two months as a camp/cabin counselor. It's a Christian adventure camp for underprivileged kids (many kids don't have to pay) and I was told I might either be teaching horseback riding or rock-climbing....This is a step outside my comfort zone as I'm not quite sure what to expect, but I'm ready for it! I am hoping that God is going to teach me a lot and also use me to help many students that come through the camp.
And if you made it this far, thank you for reading about my 2011. I hope that God has taught you much this year. John Piper said in his new video that he pictures the end of each year as an account before Jesus. What would we say to him? And then he thinks, "I get another year!" God's grace is so good. Hope you are well my friends!