Wednesday, December 28, 2011

DONATE TO WIKI!!

Dear Berea,

Here's how the Wikipedia fundraiser works: Every year we raise just the funds that we need, and then we stop.

Because you and so many other Wikipedia readers donated over the past weeks, we are very close to raising our goal for this year by December 31 -- but we're not quite there yet.

You've already done your part this year. Thank you so much. But you can help us again by forwarding this email to a friend who you know relies on Wikipedia and asking that person to help us reach our goal today by clicking here and making a donation.

If everyone reading this email forwarded it to just one friend, we think that would be enough to let us end the fundraiser today.

Of course, we wouldn't turn you down if you wanted to make a second donation or a monthly gift.

Google might have close to a million servers. Yahoo has something like 13,000 staff. We have 679 servers and 95 staff.

Wikipedia is the #5 site on the web and serves 470 million different people every month – with billions of page views.

Commerce is fine. Advertising is not evil.iBut it doesn't belong here. Not in Wikipedia. Wikipedia is something special. It is like a library or a public park. It is like a temple for the mind. It is a place we can all go to think, to learn, to share our knowledge with others.

When I founded Wikipedia, I could have made it into a for-profit company with advertising, but I decided to do something different. We’ve worked hard over the years to keep it lean and tight. We fulfill our mission, and leave waste to others.

Thanks again for your support this year. Please help spread the word by forwarding this email to someone you know.

Thanks,
Jimmy Wales
Wikipedia Founder

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Blackie

Hello!! I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! I'm proud to say that I might be an official adult given the results of this Christmas. I've been thankful every Christmas, and I've always known Jesus is the reason for the season, but this year was a tad different in our household. I was wayyy more excited about the presents I got for my family and seeing their hopefully excited reactions. I wasn't sad about not getting one certain present, because everything I got was so appreciated. I got stuff I need. Our whole family did. It was very pleasant. I'm also happy to say I was given the opportunity to start a retirement fund which I've been wanting to do as soon as I had money. I received an unexpected extra present from my grandma that left me speechless. Needless to say, I'm thankful. Sorry to sound if I'm bragging. I'm blessed.

OKAY, to explain the title of this post, I'm getting a cat. Yes, I'm finally doing it. After spending years wanting my own companion and weeks trying to find one to adopt, that time is here. My file is awaiting approval at the humane society. My future cat is marked as "adoption pending". She's perfect. I'm naming her Mika. I found that name and liked it. No special meaning, but it seems to fit well. She is the love bug I've been searching for. She purred and sat on my lap. She's about 2 1/2 yrs old. I want her in my house ASAP. I want to to bring her home tomorrow, I'm ready. I might be a crazy cat lady. End of story.


Romans 8:26 In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Tubthumping

It's been forever and a year since I've talked to you, world. My apologies.

The title comes from a great song by "Chumbawamba", which became famous in the late '90s. It's my go-to song when I'm in a bad mood, sad, on rainy days, etc. The song can be annoying to some, but for some reason, hearing the repetitive lyrics totally hit the right spot for me. "I GET KNOCKED DOWN, BUT I GET UP AGAIN, YOU'RE NEVER GONNA KEEP ME DOWN!" It's my reminder to stay strong, to think outside the moment.

Deep breath. It's winter break. YAYYY! For some reason, winter break has radically changed for me since I was a kid. I think it's hitting me that this isn't real life. I'm not going to get a 2+ week break for Christmas the rest of my life probably. (Unless I work for a company that shuts down between Christmas-New Years. Ha)

My dear friend and roommate completely moved out this past weekend. I now have 2 other roommates. It's a long/complicated situation, but the atmosphere is different. This isn't the same house I moved into 3-4 months ago. Not saying that as a good or bad thing quite yet, it's just a change, and humans are compelled to not LOVE change. We are redecorating, buying new stuff, compromising for old stuff, cleaning out, yadda yadda. I have to say it makes me desperately sad to not come home to 2 fur-balls (cats) greeting me at the door.

Which brings me to a new topic. A long, thought out plan has led me to the decision to buy a cat, a companion. Cats are therapeutic. Most pets are in fact. I need that one consistent thing in my life to bring me a smile daily. I want a moving/living thing to depend on me for its health and comfort. (NOT A KID)...yet. Dogs require training, walking, taking outside, etc. Cats are relatively easily self-cared for. As long as they know how to use a litter box and purr, it sounds like a great deal to me. I've received the question if I will be able to care for it. I truly believe with how bad I want one, I'll be able to give it a happy and spoiled home. I went with my roommate to the humane society tonight, but only looked at 2 cats and left with none. The humane society is a busy place. They don't want to waste time having you play with each cat, so we were basically allowed to look at 2. I liked them both, but wasn't in love. I felt rushed, so I knew that leaving empty handed was just fine. Adoption is no long process now a days. The worker said that most cats are adopted within 3-5 days of arriving at the shelter and you must come prepared to take one home with you. With Christmas around the corner and Squeaky waiting at my parents for me, it was another reason to wait on adoption. In a few weeks I assure you, I'll have a cat. :)

I am now patiently waiting the holidays with my family and close friends. Great company, good food, and traditions. Growing up not only brings a reminder of past memories but a thought of the future to come.

So, this is the 4th day before Christmas. We are nearly to the "Christ Candle" on the advent wreath. So, for the 20th day of December:

"You shall love the Lord your God with your whole heart, with all your soul (your life), with all your mind, and with all your strength." (Deuteronomy 6:4)

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Food, Family, Fun

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone!!

I'm thankful for you taking time to read my blog! :) I hope everyone is thankful for the loved ones in their lives. I'm so thankful for so many things I can't begin typing...

I'm in Minnesota for the weekend visiting the extended family. I love my family, and I don't see them often enough with mine and their busy lifestyles. It's always weird coming to a house you've been going to since you were a kid. It kind of brings me back to my childhood, good and bad. I never grew up in one particular house or town so I don't have that feeling often. I'm a grown woman now. Yeah, I still have lots of growing to do, but I can hold adult conversations and don't play with toys. I sit at the adult table now and am legal to have adult beverages, although I'm still seen as a child.

I had a long ride today with my parents, brother, and cousin. It was unique because I don't live or see them very often so of course conversation was unusual in a way. We were all in a single van, without the distraction of a TV or 3G or 10 people in a room talking. It made the 6 hour ride a little less painful.

Tomorrow I will indulge in more than necessary food. Copious amounts of food make me feel gross. I'm terrified of being overweight. I look down and feel my chin bulge and I'm scared I'm getting big....that's me.

So, Happy Thanksgiving again! Remember what it's all about and give thanks. :)

"Give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good, and his mercy endures forever." Psalm 107:1

Thursday, November 17, 2011

It's been brought to my attention.....

That I am selfish. That I'm spoiled. That I'm a mean girl.

It hurts me to hear these things. No matter who I think I am, someone will always see me as the enemy, a horrible person.

I went on my first mission trip in 2005 I believe. First time leaving the country. First time packing for a summer trip with no swim suit or short shorts. Matamoros Mexico was the destination. I "trained" for almost a year to prepare myself. I completely stepped out of my comfort zone, my culture, my habits. I saw poverty first hand. I helped build an added on portion to a church in 110 degree weather. I mixed cement by hand in jeans and a T-shirt that stuck to my body with every move. I put together rebar as a mere 14 year old. I talked to people about God, one of the hardest things for most Christians to do. I played soccer with Mexicans almost 10 years younger than me who kicked my butt. But that summer I changed. I realize my life was comfortable compared to all the people I met in Mexico. How much I took for granted. I'll never forget.
It impacted me so much, I did it again the following year, 2006. I spent a week of my high school summer in Mexico. In 110 degree heat. (Which most Wisconsinites wouldn't understand.) It wasn't easy.

For some reason, helping people and going out of my comfort zone gives me a huge adrenaline rush and I love it.

That's why in the winter of '05 after hurricane Katrina hit, I was willing to do everything in my power to get my parents to let me go to New Orleans to help. I will never forget spending that New Years Eve in a gas station somewhere between Wisconsin and New Orleans. I'll never forget the images of the Mardi Gras city that winter. It was horrible. I'll never forget having to wear a Hazmat suit and swinging a 20 lb sledge hammer. I'll never forget the smell of a house (or worse, refrigerator) that had been sitting in water for 2-3 months. I'll never forget seeing the home owners cry as their belongings were piled up in their front yard as garbage. I slept on a cot and showered in port-o-potty style showers during my Christmas break. I helped, and made a difference, it made me happy.

To visit the topic that I'm spoiled.....
I grew up getting made fun of because I never had a Ferbi or Gigapet. I remember the nights my mom would cry because teaching jobs were becoming as sparse as snow in Texas. I grew up thinking shopping at Goodwill was normal. The newest car my family has owned was 5 years old, but they were mostly 10-20 years old. I might be spoiled, but it's because my parents want to give me what they never had. I don't come from a rich family where money is no problem. I've been working since I was legally allowed to and even before that babysitting and mowing grass. We are blessed with everything we have. Sorry if I come off as spoiled or selfish. I'm not used to having nice things handed to me...

I don't appreciate being judged. I work for what I have. My life is not sugarcoated.

1 Peter 3:15 In your hearts honor Christ the Lord as holy, always being prepared to make a defense to anyone who asks you for a reason for the hope that is in you

Thursday, November 10, 2011

BABY FOOD

The past week has gone from unplanned, to even more unplanned for me. I'll start from the beginning and hopefully not leave out any detail, except the part when I was unconscious for 45 minutes.

For the past year my Grandma B has been in the nursing home after a stroke that severely worsened her health. We all hoped and prayed she would recover, but that was the end of her walking or being able to use her whole left side. Her memory also dwindled which is always a hard thing for family members. My family spent that year to visit her weekly in the nursing home and spend holidays with her. The decline was gradual, but that's what happens when you're 86. I think the severity hit me this year at Easter when she asked my brother if I was his wife. That was hard for me to hear, but I still loved her and realized it probably just wasn't the best day for her memory. So 2 weekends ago, my mom called to tell me my grandma was very sick and taken to the hospital ICU. They first found out when she came down with pneumonia, then discovered she had a bowel obstruction and an elevated heart rate. The bad news seemed to keep coming. Last Monday I knew it was important for my grandma and mom that I go see her. We sat by her hospital bed for almost an hour which was calming for me as it would become my last goodbye. She was quite talkative for the condition she was in. In the following days my mom told me how my grandma would talk about being thankful Berea came to visit. That meant a lot to me because a few months earlier she did not even know me. Throughout the week her condition worsened until God called her home Saturday morning. That is the closest person in my life to ever pass away, which made the transition very hard for me. It was calming to know she had a strong faith and said multiple times her place was ready in heaven. We all know she is in a better place now which is a calming thought. My mom and I both talked about the tears being from our jealousy at times, haha.

So, last Friday was also a changing point in my life. I've noticed my eyes have become worse when driving at night or not being able to see things far away that I used to. I had an eye appointment Friday for the first time since I was a kid and found out I'm getting glasses. It's weird. I hope they help and don't make me look stupid.

For weeks my boyfriend and I planned to go to Chicago for his sister-in-laws 30th birthday last weekend which is what we did. We left Friday night in hopes of getting up early to go shopping. I've never been to Chicago to hang out before and was so excited. Unfortunately, I woke up with a horrible throbbing/stabbing pain in my mouth that had gradually gotten worse since the middle of the week. I was in a lot of pain and wanted to go home. Well, my dad found a dentist that was open in Chicago that I went to see. After finding out my grandma died in the middle of the night. So I go to the dentist to find out my wisdom teeth are coming in and I had an infection under one. The dentist told me to get them taken out within the next week. So, between my grandmas' funeral and surgery yesterday, I've been out of school this whole week.

This week is my 10th week and since I'm on trimesters, next week is finals. SOOO this week is the last week before finals. I.WANT.TO.CRY. I HAVE been crying. I've told all my teachers, some of which understanding, others not at all. These haven't been planned things. When I have an infection, it could get worse...and I can't plan deaths.

So it's been about 30 hours since my surgery and I'm really sore. Yesterday wasn't as bad cause I was numb and on pain killers, but today I'm all puffy and swollen and sore. I'm still taking my meds, but OUCH. I tried eating chicken and rice soup and couldn't even do it today. I feel sick and weak.

Genesis 3:19 For dust you are and to dust you shall return

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

It's All Relative

Have you ever had that conversation with someone about something being purple or blue and you argue against each other even though you're looking at the same object and neither of you are color blind? Why do kids paint pictures with purple elephants?

We all see things differently. My friend might like a stupid pattern of wallpaper and I love it. It's just different opinions. So many times in life, there are not right or wrong answers. There are things that are good and bad, but there are better and worse things too. It's all relative. Every person sees and understands things differently, there's really no one to judge right and wrong.

Everything is in relation to what a person knows or has seen and everybody has seen and knows different things.

My perception of 15 feet might be different than yours and different from what is actually 15 feet. In that case, there is a right answer, but no one can be to blame without measuring.

That's why my family has a hard time with the phrase "I told you so". Whatever "I told you so", was probably a guess and you knew no better than the other person that you were right. It was just a better guess. It's all relative to what you think.


Thursday, October 20, 2011

"Normal"

What's normal? Is there such thing as a normal 16 year old or a normal family? How about having a normal house or a normal dinner? Isn't that kind of stuff all unique? But can everything be unique?

I started thinking about this because I'm watching a show called "Intervention". For those of you unfamiliar, it's about a person who has an addiction, usually drugs or alcohol that effects their friends and family. The particular one I'm watching is about a 21 year old girl who has been doing heroin for 5 years and lives on the streets. If you saw her, maybe you'd think she was weird or something, but you'd have no idea she was shooting coke or heroin in the bathroom. That's just like seeing a family out to eat and you'd have no idea the dad beats his wife or his wife is a hoarder. I mean those are extremes, but I still ask if my family is "normal". Is it normal that my dad's a pastor and both my brother and I are engineers? Is it normal that my parents don't have a flat screen TV or a car newer than 5-10 years old? Not because they don't have money, but because they're comfortable. Is it normal that we moved so much? Probably not, but we're not completely weird.

It's weird to think about what's normal or unique. Does it get you anywhere having a title of normal/unique anyways? Probably not, but it's interesting.


Monday, October 10, 2011

Bullied Berea: Part 2

I didn't end the last post very well. I've had several people ask me how I got through that part of my life or what would have helped. I want to say that my childhood made me who I am today, the good and the bad. It made me self conscious because I always felt like I was being judged, and I still do to this day. It made me stronger and more able to get through road blocks in my life. It helped me see into the future rather than dwell on the current hard time and know that I would get through. I am still learning that you SHOULD be nice to everyone, but NOT everyone will be a good friend.

I think the biggest disappointment of being bullied as a kid was the lack of responsibility from teachers. When I would tell a teacher what was going on they gave me the impression to "toughen up". Or they would ignore me for "tattling". Most of the bullying went on at recess and I feel like recess was a break for teachers to sit there and relax and not pay attention to what was going on. I can't believe the teachers were completely ignorant as to seeing me being bullied. As an adult I can see in a group of kids who's the leader and who is picked on. The least the teachers could have talked to the parents at parent teacher conferences about their kid showing bully like qualities. Granted some parents wouldn't care.
I think talking about it might have been therapeutic. I mean talking to someone outside of my family. That I could have seen it wasn't my fault or give me confidence.
I guess my biggest piece of mind would have come from the bullies feeling how I felt or getting in trouble.

So how did I get through it, you ask? My family, in one sense. Every time I had thoughts of hurting myself or others, I thought how disappoint my parents would be and how much they'd truly miss me. My brother was always perfect at everything in my eyes, and I didn't want to look bad compared to him.
My faith also helped me. As a kid it was hard realizing why I was going to Sunday School every Sunday, but I thank my parents for that. It's my dads career to know about the bible and God, so I came to understand religion very well. God was more or less an imaginary friend, in different respects. I don't know how many times I heard the words "God loves you". As a bullied kid, it was nice to hear anyone LOVED me, whether I would have admitted it back then or not. Love is a powerful word.
Deep down I knew I was better than those people that hurt me. I always thought; what comes around goes around. Some day I'd have a chance to prove myself.
Of course, I had different friends along the way that shared the same feelings as myself, or helped me get through, but not all the time.

So I hope this answers questions. :)

Hebrews 13:5- "Never will I leave you nor forsake you"

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Bullied Berea

If I wasn't going to an awesome college to get what I think is an awesome degree to have an awesome career, I would highly reconsider my future. I would spend time being an advocate for bullied kids. If I could save one kid from the torment I went through, I would in a heartbeat.
I am very passionate about the topic of bullied kids.....because I've been there. I've never talked about it in much detail because part of me believed it was all my fault and I've tried blocking the memories, but some things don't fade. Here's my story:

Until high school, I was the ugly duckling, the runt, the scapegoat. It started in kindergarten, from what I remember. I was 5-6 years old. I lived in a rural Oklahoma town of less than 1,500 people and 1 sq mile. I wasn't born there, so I was the new girl, a new face, competition. I was judged from the beginning by my 5 and 6 year old classmates.

The Spice Girls came out with their hit song "Wannabe" in 1996, my kindergarten year. My classmates idolized them. They began to pretend they were the Spice girls, the 5 popular girls that is. I wanted to be cool and fit in and be friends with these girls that were bratty little 5 year olds. So, I wanted to be a Spice Girl, but there was no one left to be. In consequence, they thought it would be a great idea for me to be their maid. They would pretend I was a sink, and spit on me and make me carry their things. They would call me the ugly one because I was the maid and couldn't be as pretty as them. I wouldn't get to play with them 'cause they said the maid couldn't do that. I would push them on the marry-go-round and be the last to go down the slide. Ya, stupid childish things, but at that point in my life, those were the important things. It continued through second grade and I somewhat got used to the agony. I would still cry most nights..
For the third grade, my dad took a job in Kansas. Another rural town, a step up from Oklahoma in the sense the population was 2,500 and a little over 3 sq. miles. I was excited to start new. New people that didn't know of my past being bullied or knew I was an easy target. It didn't take too long for them to catch on. It was mostly them making fun of my clothes or who I talked to. I had a little bit better of a reputation because my brother was loved by all and my mom worked in the school district. I gained a couple close friends that didn't make fun of me, but I was still vulnerable and got harassed. I remember multiple occasions wanting to move, crying after school, hating my classmates SO much. It was simple things like not getting invited to birthday parties or getting Christmas presents or sitting by certain people at lunch. Small things, but as a kid those are important in daily life. I would lie if I said I never wanted to kill one of them or kill myself so they wouldn't have to deal with me like I was a huge pain in their life. We slowly grew up and I could stand up for myself or talk back with the same nastiness they used on me. I realized those kids weren't my real friends but I always worried about what they thought of me. I became self conscious.

My freshman year of high school my dad took a job in Wisconsin. It tore me apart to know I'd have to start the process all over and leave some people that had really helped me grow up and stay strong. Sheboygan Falls, WI was about 7,000 people and right next to the much bigger town of Sheboygan. My freshman year was rough because I became friends with not the best crowd. The school was bigger and I had already missed half a year of sports so I didn't meet people through sports teams. The best thing was the kids going to high school there had come from a few different middle schools so even they didn't all know each other. I went through some road bumps of finding my friends and fitting in, but it all came together. Girls being girls, I still wasn't invited to all the fun sleepovers or shopping trips, but I had a closer group of friends I could do stuff with. I was happier. High school ended and I couldn't have been happier. I'd done a lot of growing. I had a great background of friends. Some people I'd never have to see again. I left with a boyfriend. I was seen as a young woman, not an ugly runt. No one knew my brother and still liked me for me. And I still am thankful for my best friend from high school, she gets me through a lot.

Point of the story: I was bullied and understand what the kids that have killed themselves went through. I HATE that the teachers stood around as if nothing was wrong. The kids that bully are the popular kids who never get in trouble. I hated school for the reason of knowing that each day would bring new criticism. I'm partly mad at my parents for seeing my struggle and not knowing what to do.

Moving might have been the best thing emotionally for me.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

The Weather and My Life

When things are great, it's inevitable something will happen. Roller coasters don't end at the highest point.

I'm a firm believer in happiness. Apart from my religious beliefs, I believe being happy is the most important life lesson. Possibly the best emotion, in my eyes. So why do things that are unpleasing/unhappy? Yet, as humans, we still do.

I feel like the worst part of my childhood, besides having crappy friends and being bullied, was moving so much. Which was possibly the best thing. In my eyes, as a little girl, when things were bad with my friends, we moved. Obviously that's not why my parents moved, but I saw it as being able to run away from my problems. Granted all the moving gave me great experiences and cultured me well.

So is it time to fly?

Am I happy?

.....Now what

John 14:1
"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God"

So, it's getting cold.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Ovals and Triangles

My life has begun a new rotation of scheduled activities and routine as with most starts of school years and as I've discussed before. The trains outside my house are the worst from 6am-9am. My window faces east and my bed rests in perfect view which invites the sun to welcome me to each and every day. The cats accompany me during my getting ready phase. I drive through a miniature rush hour through downtown to campus. I plan and schedule constantly making sure all events are carefully scheduled in my planner for the upcoming days/weeks. I think about my "to do's". Today they happen to be; finding lighting for my room that will probably be a trip to goodwill, getting my nails fixed (I broke one and it hurts), working out, and finding new sunglasses (I stepped on mine). I'm going about this day figuring out when/how to accomplish those tasks.

Do I need to go grocery shopping? Do I have at home what I want for lunch? What homework do I need to do?

I didn't even have coffee this morning and listen to me...

I watched the Roast of Charlie Sheen on Comedy Central the other night. Honestly, I got bored and stopped paying attention. Many of the jokes were crude or I didn't understand them. I then watched Two and a Half Men because of the whole issue of Ashton Kutcher taking over the lead role of Charlie Sheen. It shouldn't have been made such a big deal. I watched the TV show E.R. my whole childhood as a result of it being my moms favorite show. But anyways, actors/actresses come and go. It keeps you interested.

I'm hungry.

Thanks for reading-stay posted

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

D-

According to wikipedia, a test is an assessment intended to measure the respondents' knowledge or other abilities.

I hate getting into politics. I hate having a point of view because I'm often indifferent or see both sides. BUT, there's one topic I have a strong opinion on. American education.

This is controversial. You won't all agree with me. You might get offended, and I apologize.

I've struggled with school my whole life. I've been told I don't study enough, I don't try hard enough, and it's made me feel like a dumb student. It makes me not want to try or study even though I do. Testing me doesn't help me learn. It criticizes me, belittles me, makes me anxious, and nervous. I'm not dumb, but tests make me feel dumb. I'm a bad test taker but I'm an amazing realist. I'm creative and testing just makes me feel standardized. I believe my learning has been inhibited because of the American education system. In the real world, you don't sit down every day/week and get tested on your work. Not with a written form asking questions if you're doing your job right. It's dumb and I hate it.
I hate also being segregated into grades. You don't even have anything in common with your classmates except your age. Why not divide into levels? People of similar learning styles and smartness are grouped.
I hate the un-reality of school. High school mostly. Why are we sheltered from the real world? Why are tank tops not allowed? How come I was never exposed to the types of careers out there? Why did I never learn how to take out a college loan or set up a retirement fund? There was such a strict guideline of learning. I'm not like the majority of kids, so I don't learn the same. I feel like college was such a change/shock for me. It was dumb. I was unprepared. I blame high school for ill-preparing me.

I don't necessarily believe in homeschooling. Just because it cuts out the social aspect of school. Home schooled kids interact, but not like kids at school. Parents might want to shelter their kids from school type behavior, but that's dumb too, because sheltering your kid is dumb.

I don't know much, but Montessori school is the best idea of school in America, I believe. Research it if you're not familiar. It's independent, hands-on, fun.

I'm just writing because I've been jipped in school. I think I could be smarter if I would have been given the correct chance or been taught "right". I'm a good people person. I've excelled in every job I've had. I learn fast. I have fun in my jobs.

School just isn't for me, but will pay off in the end I believe.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Memories, nightmares

With less than 24 hours until the 10th anniversary of an event that will always be remembered in American history, the memories flood back like it was just last year. I feel compelled to write about my account of the event since I was among the youngest age group to remember the event. I also believe I relate a little closer to the event than most people for a reason I will soon explain.

September 11, 2001. I was a mere 6th grader. In my second month of middle school. I lived in Sabetha, KS, a small rural town in a class of about 50 kids. It was about 9:00am, I was in my 1st class of the day, art class. We were cleaning up as first period was almost over when an announcement came over the speaker. It was the principle to tell us some planes had crashed. My first thought was that there had been an accident at the Sabetha airport, and I didn't really know anyone that would have been working out there, so it vaguely crossed my mind. He told us all to report to our "pods". Each grade gathered around the TV's we had in our pods. Reality hit 6th grader Berea Janzen. As soon as I saw the towers, I knew what was happening. Most of my classmates had no idea what the twin towers were, where they were or anything.

Rewind 2 months. July 2001. My family took a vacation out to the east coast visiting most of the states from Pennsylvania to Maine, including New York and New York City. We spent a day in New York City, shopping, site seeing, etc. We went to Ellis Island and climbed to the crown of the Statue of Liberty. I vividly remember taking a picture of my mom on the Statue of Liberty with the twin towers in the background because I was too cool to be in the picture. We made it back to New York City as it was getting later. My mom had planned to visit the world trade centers and although we were tired, we were all down to go. Walking downtown as the vendors all wanted you to buy their hot dogs and I <3 NYC t-shirts, we made it to "ground zero" as it's now called. I remember walking up to this sphere thinking it was so cool.

World Trade Center Plaza - New York City, New York

That same sphere after the attacks:

Entering the building was another unique experience. As I remember, the first floor was somewhat of a circle. It was bright as the sun was setting and reflected through all the windows. In the center you could look down to the floor below. The flags of each of the states hung. In case I didn't explain that well, here's a picture of my memory. (Not taken by me.)

We walked around to the booth that sold tickets to visit the 107th floor. We got to the booth and my parents argued if we should go on the tour because it was expensive. I was too young to pay attention to how much it costed, but they decided we would do it anyways because we had gone all that way. So, my mom bought the tickets and we continued around the circle to security. There was a metal detector and security guards that checked our purses/bags. My family got on the elevator to make the 107 story climb. I remember my ears popping a lot and of course my dad was making jokes with the elevator operator. I remember him making some joke about the Hoover Dam, weird enough. We eventually reached the top floor. The carpet was designed like a street, with yellow dashed lines, etc. You could see the entire city, the view was incredible. the windows were floor to ceiling, they had telescopes you could pay to use. There were gift shops and restaurants. They also had a theatre type room. My family decided to watch the tour in the theatre room. It gave a tour of Manhattan as if you were in a plane flying around downtown. It was cool. There was a room with a replica model of Manhattan with the trade centers the feature point sticking out above the rest of the city. Our family actually has a picture of it. We had also planned to go to the observatory deck, which would have been the 110th floor, but we were the last tour of the night, the sun was setting, and the workers had closed the deck because the dew was already setting and it was getting slippery. I can't tell you how thankful I am that our family didn't go up there. My nightmares would have been even worse after the attacks. We finished the tour and ended our day in NYC.

Jump back to September 11, 2001. I was watching the news of the crashes happening. The planes flying into the very place I had just been on vacation. I knew what was happening. I was crying. I was thinking about each worker my family had talked to. All the tourists who were visiting just like we were on that top floor. The security guards that had checked my backpack. The elevator I had rode up. The theatre I had sat in. Everything was flashing back. I didn't know how to respond, I didn't know what was going to happen even moments or hours from 9:00 that morning. School had virtually stopped. We spent the morning watching the news as it progressed and the towers eventually fell. It was a nightmare. Can you imagine the nightmares I had in the weeks following? It hit close to home.

I never knew anyone specifically that worked there on a first name bases. But I had been there. It gives me chills. Every year brings back memories. It's crazy to think it's been 10 years since then. I'm now a senior in college.

My prayers go out to the 2,753 family's that lost loved ones, friends that lost friends, and anyone else affected by the tragedy.

I will never forget.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Oh The Irony

...I love school?

Well, no. I love learning....about things I like and am interested in.

I started my senior year of college this week. I'm growing up. I'm grown up? People are teaching me new things every day whether they realize it or not. On top of being pounded with information in my classes.....my classes, which are;
Digital Circuits and Microprocessors
Ethics for Engineers
Design for Quality
Senior Design
Electromagnetism and Optics

I love my new apartment. It's a loft type place by the third ward. It's pretty. I like my roommates, finally. I went grocery shopping this week so I finally have food in the fridge and places for my things.

I miss my internship, but I have to be positive about opportunities I'll have this school year. I received my senior design project this morning. That's exciting. I'll miss the income I was making this summer. But honestly, my education is more important than money, it will work itself out.

Sorry I haven't been very up to date with my blogging. Summer is meant to be spent in nice weather enjoying your free time. So any free time I had, wasn't spent on my computer. Hopefully I'll have some more time to blog now that it's getting cold?

My best friend Alyssa got a job this past week in her career path. She graduated with an associates degree in dental assisting and finally got a job about 6-9 months later. Yayyy.

My plans to go skydiving this weekend I think have been put off. I haven't talked to my brother recently sooooo I don't think that is happening :-\. I'm bummed, but I really haven't had time to plan....I'll blame growing up.

I talked to the freshman class of Industrial Engineers this morning. It's crazy remembering being in their seat and how much I've seriously learned since then, it's crazy. I'd love to be a mentor of what I've learned and my experiences. But it was great answering questions.

First week of school, check.


Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Bittersweet

I'm a total optimist. I go through challenges and life looking towards the good. Believing happiness is key to a successful life. My smile gets me through road blocks. My faith and morals allow me to get to that happy place. I'm not oblivious to the negatives or think that life is filled with rose pedals, because nothing is perfect, I accepted that YEARS ago.

I thrive on being needed. As simple as my cat following me around the house or someone needing information I know. I love attention and learned that in high school. Being on the dance team was the best experience ever. Being on a team of about 15 girls and having hundreds of people watch you is the kind of adrenaline I love. I'm going skydiving in a couple weekends which proves my want for adrenaline. I love that such simple things satisfy my wants. I don't need drugs and alcohol to give me a good time. I need people and experiences.

I organize. I love organization. I would love to organize all the time. I like having places for everything and labels. I like simplifying things so that people understand and making life easier.

I'm not sure what inspired this blog or where I'm headed. Just talking, thinking.

I am a planner. I've been let down by many plans. I like to see things happen. If I want to do something, I'm overly determined to do it. My parents gave me the impression I could do anything I wanted when I was little, so it's hard to get defeated. To all of you who doubted me as an engineer I have about a year left of school and am loving it.

I like doing things many other people haven't. I was in the world trade center less than 3 months before 9/11, I helped the winter after Katrina in New Orleans with the devastation, I took 2 mission trips to Mexico that let me see poverty first hand, I've been in the Niagara Falls, I've camped above treeline, got altitude sickness, and climbed the tallest mountain in Colorado when I was 13. I've been lost in the NYC Bronx, and been in slot canyons. I was on an Indian reservation that had bald eagles in cages and been on the field where Gettysburg was fought. I've been in the crown of the Statue of Liberty and in a jail cell on Ellis Island (for touristic purposes). For the sake of being done talking about myself, I thank my parents for these opportunities.

I also enjoy helping people. Going on mission trips is fun. Getting my hands dirty and proving I can help is fun. Making cement, using a sledge hammer, mountain biking, you name it.

My point is, I don't want it to end. My internship this summer has been another series of events I'll talk about for years to come.

Thanks everyone!

Psalm 107:1 Give thanks to the Lord for he is good and his mercy endures forever.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Routine

I like routine, I hate routine. I like stability but I like adrenaline. I'm a happy camper.
Repetitiveness gets boring and I can't handle being bored. I'm not a boring person. Uncertainty put's me on the edge of my seat, but I look past the issue. I try. I know I'll get through hard issues or decisions so why freak out about it?

My routine's about to change. My summer classes are done this Wednesday. My internship is coming to an end. In a month I'll be in a new routine of classes and working at the bookstore. Not to mention a new place to live. In about a year my routine will drastically change again as I graduate college. It's fun.

I adjust well to change.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

AMERICAN GOVERNMENT

I have a contemporary issue paper due this week and I just wanted to see what you guys think.


MOBILE DEVICE USAGE WHILE DRIVING

Since the rise of technology, American Government has been faced with the problem of dealing with an issue they had never encountered before. When computers and cellular devices were introduced into society, immediate threats were overlooked and they were seen as an enhancement for daily life. It was evident that these devices would evolve and people would find loopholes to using them unsafely. Social media opened the door for predators, vehicles advanced each year, and cell phones grew to be like a third arm for nearly all Americans. Decades ago, the daily scene we live in of built in GPS systems, touch screen phones, and satellite radios were barely imagined. This fantasy seems picture perfect until you hear that in 2009, 995 people died in car accidents with a cell phone being the distracting factor. This doesn’t even include people injured for the same reason.

Here we are in the 21st century, not thinking twice about answering a call from an important person while driving to work. Individual states have relied on their supreme courts to decide whether talking on the phone while driving is constitutional. Some say yes, some say no, some have not made a decision because the Constitution does not mention technology in the context we use it today. I think that shows a reason for change. Our government did not start with the kind of technology and resources we have today. We want everything done right away and with cell phones and computers; we do not have to wait for answers. A one minute phone call can provide the update we need, regardless if the other person is distracted from driving. My question remains why the federal Supreme Court has not stepped up to providing a law to govern driving while being distracted on your cell phone. I drive to Illinois to go shopping and the law changes for cell phone use while driving. I drive to Minnesota to visit my grandparents and am unaware of Minnesota state law. As a driver, I am responsible for knowing the laws, but it would be simpler to have a precedent.

Learning about different types of law in class gave me an insight of what could be done about the issue of cell phones and driving. The least that could be done is set an administrative law to protect non cell phone distracted drivers from those being distracted by mobile devices. It is evident through research the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) has done, that these communication devices can be life threatening. So what is stopping the federal government from making a decision?

Although technology has become a large scale topic in recent years, technology is moving faster than our government can keep up. In America, we have a great system of checks and balances so intricate that we hope to prevent bad decisions from being made. Of course you cannot make everyone happy, but the system of checks and balances at least tries to make the right decisions. The branches of government look into all aspects to eliminate harmful or unsafe resolutions. The problem with this system is time. As I mentioned before, we are a nation that gets answers nearly immediately and our government system does not allow for immediate answers. It is something we are all accustom to, but should it be changed? I wish there was an easy answer for this, but just as much people hate waiting, people hate change.

Using cell phones while driving is just as dangerous as drunk driving, yet the difference between the two is that there is a national restriction on drunk driving and cell phone use remains legal in a number of states. During my 5 o’clock drive home from work each night, the number of fellow drivers talking on their phones is out of control. I fear for my life knowing my safety is basically out of my control when it should be in control. Our nation needs to resolve this issue and fast.

Sources

"Cell Phone and Texting Laws." Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA). Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, Aug. 2011. Web. 13 Aug. 2011. .

Christine Barbour and Gerald C. Wright, Keeping the Republic: Power and Citizenship in American Politics, 4th Brief Edition (Washington, DC: CQ Press, 2009).

"Mobile Phones and Driving Safety." Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., 01 Aug. 2011. Web. 13 Aug. 2011. .

Washington D.C. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. U.S. Department of Trasportation. Distracted Driving 2009. National Center for Statistics and Analysis, Sept. 2010. Web. 13 Aug. 2011. .

Monday, August 8, 2011

THANK YOU ABB!

Crazy past week.

So, last Wednesday was my 21st birthday as most of you know. Therefore, the past 5 days have been in celebration of my 21 years of life. I celebrated my first legal drink at Midnight on Tuesday, took my first day off all summer on Wednesday and went to the zoo with my boyfriend. Wednesday night I went for cocktails with a couple friends. After sticker shock of my $15 drinks, we were on our way out of the restaurant when a group of middle-aged people next to us heard it was my birthday. They invited us to join and after them buying us a round of drinks we found out they were on business trips and we were being taken care of by their companies. :-o Yeah, I've heard of these things happening, but to be in the midst of it was a little uneasy. These 6 people throwing around their companies money on my 21st birthday....not exactly what I have in mind for my business trip this week. SPEAKING OF....

I leave for Ohio in the morning on behalf of ABB to go on my first business trip. :-D Not being able to take a vacation this summer makes me extremely happy to even be able to get out of the state. I am beyond happy that I have been given this opportunity as an intern. So, I'm moving an entire production work center to this Ohio plant. Raw materials, hardware, tools, equipment. This is taking all of the classes I've been in so far and applying it. I'm leading this move, it's awesome. I'm setting up meetings and delegating tasks. Creating layouts and doing autoCAD drawings. Fixing bill of materials and pushing deadlines. Anyways, I'm going to Ohio to see where I'm moving, to meet people I need to be in contact with, figure out logistics and technicalities of this move that I want to happen by the end of the month. I really hope I can accomplish that for the company.
It's quite accurate to say I want to work for ABB post graduation. There are so many opportunities and I think they've given me a better internship than most of my fellow classmates.



Monday, August 1, 2011

AUGUST!!!

Eighth month of the year. A 2008 movie. National back to school month. National goat cheese month. My Birthday month.

Known for the ugly limeish green peridot “birth” stone. Signals the last month and end of summer. Brings hot weather in the northern hemisphere. Hawaii became in the 50th state in August of 1959. Switzerland’s day of independence is August 1st.

August is the one month I spend 11 other months waiting for. Will that change after this year? For years I’ve tried acting older than my age, ask my parents. I couldn’t wait to turn 16 and be completely free to drive alone. Then turning 18 was even more awaited because I could vote in 2008. So many things require you to be 18 to sign your life away, be called an “adult”, sign up for contests on your own, test drive new cars, buy stuff online. After being 18, it still wasn’t good enough, I wanted to be 21. Well, here I am three days to my 21st birthday and inside I’m screaming like a little kid being dragged to the dentist. I am literally the last of my core friends to be of legal drinking age. Hearing each one of them turn 21 and 22 and 23 and so on saying they wish they were my age again. Yeah right I thought….Everyone says there are no special birthdays to really look forward to after this one. Wednesday, August third will NOT last long enough.

August 3rd:

The 215th day of the year. Calvin Coolidge became the 30th president after Harding died on the 2nd. Adolf Hitler became supreme leader of Germany on August 3rd 1934. August 3, 2004 was the first time the statue of liberty opened since the 9-11 world trade center attacks. Simply 24 hours out of 8,760 a year is mine.

I’ve already gotten 2 birthday presents. My parents bought me my first new bed since the one I had was since I was out of the crib. The other present is; I’m going to Ohio for work next week, which I call my birthday present from ABB, even though that’s not the real reason.

I took off work Wednesday. It’s the first and only day I’ve asked off from work this whole summer. I think my 21st birthday is an excused absence. I hope to go to the zoo with my boyfriend. And maybe order a bloody mary for lunch? I’m spending the weekend with friends, friends I haven’t given any attention to this summer.

August signals the last few weeks I will be interning this summer. :’( Endings are hard. Especially since I’m just going back to school, not like I’m getting some great opportunity elsewhere. I’m rushing to finish my projects so I can feel accomplished and prove I helped the company this summer. Otherwise, I am organizing my work so that it can be easily passed on. I have sooooo much to say about my experience which will be in a different post when I absolutely have to be thinking about “the end”.

SO. The point of this was to grasp the concept of another year. A date I’ve looked forward to since high school. Wednesday, August 3, 2011. I thought would never come and here it is. Way to take things for granted Berea, you got what you wanted.

Eph 5:16 Make good use of every opportunity you have, because these are evil days.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Hott Pluto

My brothers' most recent blog post; Space: The End of the Shuttle, intrigued me to write about Pluto, which I was oddly enough reading about today on my lunch break before I read my brothers' blog.

DWARF PLANET- Something in space that has 2 of the 3 characteristics of a planet.

Did you know there is an actual definition of what a planet is? There has to be since there are only 8 of them. Meaning that Pluto isn't the 9th. It's actually one of the few known dwarf planets. Can you fathom negative 200 degrees or more? Click here to read about Resolution 5a which outlines what a planet is, just for a background. Anyways, it's all a mystery and I love that it changes and we learn new things and that this suggests that there is room for finding things we don't currently know. On the other hand, it makes me extremely sad for wasting all of 20 minutes making that paper mache replica as the 9th planet in 5th grade....

Ok on to my apologies. I work 40 hours a week plus the 10 hours I spend driving to and from work a week. I go to class about 7 hours a week. I have homework and housework on top of that. I like to sleep 7-8 hrs a nights = 49-56 hrs a week. You'd say, well Berea you have 40 more hours for activities. HARDLY. I get tired. Don't be too shocked. My point is; I apologize for seeming to fall off the face of Milwaukee this summer. I almost feel like I'm letting people down by not being the normal Berea. Change is hard and I'm still adjusting too. Just bear with me. Hence why I never blog anymore.

BTW; two weeks today 'til my 21st. Last special birthday....:'(

Oh and by the way, I LOVE THIS WEATHER. I sit in my car after being in the sun 9 hours, the temperature well over 100, and smile. What makes me sad isn't the sweat that soon covers my back, or my hands grasping the overwhelmingly hot steering wheel, but the thought that in a few short weeks, I will once again have to get used to the cold and snow for months on end.

Muddle on that.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Emotions

Why do I have so many? Why do I express them so much? Why do I wear my feelings on my sleeve?

But seriously. My emotions depend SO much on the people around me. Why? I don’t know.

If people around me are angry, upset, sad, I find it really hard not to be like that, but I don’t realize I’m doing it always. I’m partially terrified of making the situation worse. I don’t want to say something that will make the person more angry, upset, or sad.

I’m not selfish with my emotions. Interpret that how you want.

It’s hard for me to have the mindset that I’m out for my own good. I care a lot about the feelings of those around me.

I don’t like being told that what I have is “crap”. I don’t like being told my car is old and not perfect, I know that, but you saying it belittles me. I don’t like you saying that my iPhone sucks, because I’m proud of it, I like it, and it works AWESOME for me, which is all that matters. I hate people saying anything about my family. No family is perfect, but I love them and you have no right judging the few people that know me best. Please don’t make fun of my clothes. I don’t WANT to look like everyone else so when I step out of my comfort zone and try something new, don’t tell me it’s ugly or weird. I’m self conscious enough without someone laughing at my pink shoes. Jealous you can’t pull it off or what?

This post comes with some animosity and I apologize. It’s been a rough week.

So, I’m one of those people that can’t drive with people in the car. I can listen to the radio, I’ve changed clothes while driving before, I have eaten while driving, and numerous other things, but having people in my car is the worst distraction ever. I can’t parallel park with someone in the car, I can barely drive down the street straight. I don’t know why. No idea, but as of lately, I hate it.

Ugh, I’m just ready for this week to be over. Fourth of July kind of messed it up. The long weekend really didn’t make the week seem shorter.

This week at work was less productive than I would have liked. But that’s my own standard. I got done what I needed, but it was more or less busy work, which doesn’t show immediate results. Still exciting, and I still love my job a lot.

My hair is getting so long and annoying. But I think I have a fear of hair cuts. No idea why or where it came from, but I always find every reason to avoid getting it cut. Ugh….

#nowplaying- #Symphonies #DanBlack

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

July 2011

Hello all,

My summer is yet again like any other I've had thus far in my life. My second full summer away from my parents house.
My childhood summers consisted of summer camps, outdoor activities, 2 week long family vacations, sun, and water. High school I had part time jobs but mostly enjoying the extended sunlight and company of my friends. Last summer was a release from being under my parents roof the first 18 years of my life. Probably the most exciting summer because I didn't have a full time job holding me back from making random road trips or sleeping in until noon then laying on the beach or playing volleyball every day. Oh and not having parents knowing when I was coming home. It sounds like I was lazy and immature but honestly, I'm glad I had at least one summer of that. I fear it might have been the last.
This summer is just as good in the exact opposite way possible. Working 40 hour weeks, not seeing sun. Relaxing when I get time. No vacations because I don't want to miss work. Hearing about my crazy friends adventures and not being there to share the story. It might sound like I'm depressed and of course I miss those things, but I'm honestly in a great place mentally. I feel like my work is useful and I don't get belittled. I obviously enjoy it as well. I work with awesome people at an awesome company. Enough said.

I had a good 4th of July weekend including a pool, the beach, 2 firework shows, my personal firework show, too much food, BBQ's, and close friends.

I would also like to say the ONE month countdown has begun to my birthday. Twenty-first. No big deal....28 days to be exact. Weird. Really weird.

I would also like to say this summer has aloud no time whatsoever for physical activity. The little energy I have is spent playing soccer 2 hours a week. So pathetic. I don't know how my brother does it and it makes me sick. My body makes me sick right now. No beach volleyball, no runs, no workouts. I don't have a bike. My roller blades need a new brake which seems impossible to find to replace. I've been complaining about my weight, but I don't do anything about it. It's hard when I have no energy and running after dark is just not an option in this city. I like sports because it's less like working out and more fun...

Well this short week has me quite motivated. Tomorrow's already Wednesday and tonight ended my first term summer class! :) Night!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Contentedness

Satisfaction.

What gives you satisfaction? What makes you content?

Unlimited amounts of cheese variety at the grocery store? No traffic? An open register at the store? Fresh cleaned sheets? No homework? Nice weather? No plans? Or having plans? A meal you don't over-indulge in? Getting pampered? A blue sky? Money?

Have you ever thought about it?

What makes you not content? What makes you crabby or frustrated? Not having a selection of cheese at the store? Waiting in line? Being sweaty? Having homework? Not getting an expected call? Not having money?

Have you ever used the excuse "I had a bad day, this is the last thing I wanted?" Was that person supposed to know you had a bad day or what to do to make it better?

Deep breath.

It's Friday. Summerfest is at full force here in Milwaukee. We wait all year for the Summerfest grounds to be buzzing with all sorts of people, music, and festivities, yet when it's here I find myself annoyed and somewhat bothered of the immature tourists. I've gone to Summerfest the past 5 years I'd say, but this year has me somewhat turned off. I work during the week and don't feel like staying out that late to see a band I somewhat like, spending $15 for a few hours, dealing with drunks, etc. I'm still going to go this weekend most likely because I live so close and it's something that is so widely talked about.

How do you define bragging? What's the difference between showing off and sharing excitement? I think showing off and bragging is when you talk about something over and over to everyone around you. Excitement is telling your friends and family who care about you. Bragging is showing off to someone who couldn't accomplish what you did. Purposely or unintentionally hurting someones feelings because of something they couldn't do or get. Think. Just think. Look at it from their eyes. Harder than it sounds huh?

Happy Friday everyone have a fun/safe long weekend!

The shadows in the window give me a fake impression you're here. You only come with the sun and leave as it falls. My impatience lingers but it's only for the moment. The sounds are not noises, they're music.



Sunday, June 19, 2011

Happy Fathers Day

I have a few random comments on this gloomy Sunday fathers day evening. I can't sleep for numerous reasons and I found myself at bereaj.blogspot searching for an answer to calm my mind. Writing it is...

I haven't decided which I dislike more; being alone or being a 3rd wheel. I might be somewhat sick right now. I think sick is a mental thing, but I also think I have a weak immune system. Or maybe it's me thinking I'm weak that makes me think I'm sick. haha. My throat's been hurting, my nose running, and my eyes are not perfect. My throat always hurts with any chance of me being sick. Might it be my tonsils?

I went shopping in the ghetto today. I knew what I was getting in to, but it was broad daylight so I wasn't really worried. It was just awkward being the token out-of-place white girl. I hate going into grocery stores I'm not familiar with in the first place 'cause you look lost and that wasn't the place I wanted to look lost in...the two people ahead of me in line used food stamps. Thank God for everything I have and don't have (kids).

I had a random sequence of events happen to me at one point this weekend. First, I won tickets to Road America for next weekend through a radio station. Within minutes of that happening, I found $20 on the ground. It put me in an awkward position because someone obviously lost 20 bucks but what should I have done with it? Leave it on the ground for a different random stranger to find? It wasn't in some store that I could have turned it in...Donate it? All sorts of questions...

Back to work tomorrow. I need espresso beans so I can start making my morning coffee at home...

K, I really need to go to bed.


Wednesday, June 15, 2011

7471

Big number?
I could get a cheap Rolex watch for 7.5G.
The eiffel tower weighs 7,300 tons.
The great flood possibly happened 7,000 years ago.
7,500 miles could get you from mexico to alaska in about 4 days of straight driving.
I'd be more than happy in a 7,500 sq ft house...

But 7,471 is the exact number of days I've been alive.
I'm thankful for each one. 20 years old might sound young to many people, but seven thousand four hundred seventy-one is a big number to me. I've done a lot. I'm satisfied at where I am. For a 20 year old, I'm proud of myself. It's taken me a while to see and I've had rough patches and my fair share of doubt and unhappiness.
My parents are really awesome. I can't describe it and I don't know how to explain..so I'll leave it at that. If you want to argue, you'll have to get through Isaiah and I.

I'm just thankful for a lot of things right now and it feels so good to have that peace. I feel like the past year has been rough for me, I don't know why and I don't want to say I'm suddenly better, but something's changed. I didn't know getting an internship would change my attitude so much...
It's way past my bedtime...

Happy 7,472nd day to me! :-D

Thanks for your support.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

You did WHAT Berea?

Holy long day...I was up around 4:30 this morning. Had a test in my class tonight. I'm pooped.
To understand why I was up at 4:30, you need to understand a few other things first.

So my internship is still going great. But I haven't really had a chance to explain what I do. I never thought I'd get to the same point as my brother that I'm not sure I could explain what I do well enough for the average person to understand what that is. Either that or I'd oversimplify and make my job sound super easy, which I'd like to think not everyone could do. SO...
My daily activities include dealing with SAP, Kanban, BOM's, product schematics, adding routings for new products, hearing PEARL every two minutes, learning the ins and outs of NOV, learning about transformers, breakers, starters, fuses, contactors, calculating resources, and presenting efficiency metrics at a daily production meeting. After hearing this, what do you understand/what don't you understand? My fellow colleagues know or could figure out most of it. My coworkers probably know it all. My parents maybe know a couple things on the list. The point is; that's what I do.
So now to explain why I was up at 4:30 this morning. I've been working on a project. We call it the NOV project. NOV is the name of the product my project revolves around. Anyways, for my project, one task I needed to complete was to make a resource calculator. This uses all sorts of data (demand, production times, quality checks, packaging, takt time, etc.) to produce a number that tells how many people should be working on producing that product based on demand. Well, NOV is an 8' x 5' product that takes one person about 8 hours to make. So I've been learning EVERYTHING about NOV. In making the resource calculator I've been timing exactly how long it takes to make one and do quality checks and package this thing. So I needed this info by Thursday because my boss is doing a presentation with the info from research. SO, I had to be at ABB by 6:00, which is about the time I figured I'd need to start timing the worker. Well, traffic was a piece of cake at 5-5:30am so I got there a little early. The good thing was that I was done by 3 and had a couple hours to study for my test tonight...

Whew. I had an energy drink so that I wouldn't fall asleep before my test so I'm not as tired now as I should be. And I forgot to make dinner along the way and am going to bed soon..

Can't wait to have this weekend off <3 :)

Monday, June 13, 2011

I don't go around FIRE expecting not to sweat

I like adrenaline. (To a point) I like trying new things and seeing new places. I hate the feeling of uncertainty when things could go really wrong but praying they go great. I'm very scheduled and make lists so I don't forget things and stay on track.
I like being the driver so that I'm in control yet like not having control and being uneasy about where I'm going. It builds trust. I have a hard time trusting. Although, I don't think I am untrustworthy at all..
I think money should be used to gain experiences but you should be able to have fun for free.

I have two sayings I think about quite often. 1-"Better to keep your mouth shut and be thought a fool than open it and remove all doubt." 2- "Prepare for the worst, pray for the best."
I get shy around new people. My friends would never describe me as shy. But I think it helps establish a foundation. It helps me learn who I'm around and makes it so I don't make a bad first impression, if anything I don't talk much so I can't sound dumb. As I become comfortable, I open up.
As for the other quote, I was just thinking about it cause I took some dumb online quiz for kicks. It was to determine whether you're a pessimist, optimist, or realist. Funny it determined I was a realist. I was kind of hoping for something more exciting, but it was just an online test...I guess I tend to think negatively about situations knowing there's a potential for it to be awesome. I've found that when the situation doesn't go as it should, I'm not as disappointed because I was prepared. Oppositely, when it turns out better, I get more excited because I try not to have high expectations..

Does sorry ever lose its meaning? Can you over use it?...I might just be guilty of that. I'm scared of messing up or being judged so I'm quick to apologize. I also don't like when things are my fault so I guess I think if I say sorry, it will all be fine. But I often say it too much, I am realizing. Am I supposed to teach myself to not care if I offend/hurt someone? I don't like that...but saying sorry is habit.

I can't let these long days catch up to me. When I'm tired, it's time to sleep..

Sunday, June 12, 2011

I Can't Wait for Summer

Wisconsin sucks. June 12th, 48 degrees? That's just not okay.

As for other news, I'm thinking about oxymorons. You all know what they are, but I'm talking about in social behavior. This might get complicated and I'm no psychology professional, just the way I see the world. And you have to deal with it because it's my blog ;) haha.
So, I would like to think part of my personality comes from this idea...
I hate when people say how they are but act different. I think everyone does it to a point, but all the time just gets annoying. For example, saying you're a really relaxed person yet in a stressful situation are anything but relaxed. I've been working on not being that person. Or more specifically, trying to establish myself well enough to know who I am and what I do based on past experiences and how I react in situations to be able to say the truth. It's hard. You want to make yourself look like a good person, you want to think you're a good person, but no ones perfect....I also think you change depending on certain situations and might act on both sides of the aspect. Sorry if this is confusing, I would be more specific or try to relate this to something I'm thinking of, but I'm not really thinking specifically...

So, this summer I want to:
Go to the zoo soon
Go to 6 flags
Go skydiving
Ride a horse
Go to the Dells
Watch the sunrise
Go water skiing
Visit Elkhart Lake/Road America



Thursday, June 9, 2011

Outta Sight, Outta Mind

And out of breath.

I'm not a pro runner. I don't even run to compete. So I'm not ashamed to say I like running on a treadmill better than in mother nature which is what I did today. I am horrible at setting a pace which makes me start out at a sprint and get dead tired when I'm still a mile or more away from home. Running in the city you have to worry about stop lights and traffic and dumb drivers. And of course I'm out of shape and pushed myself past the point of running for the sake of a cardio workout. Back to the outside/inside thing though, I just find it a shame to run inside during summer...

BUT!, no matter where I run, it's my favorite form of thinking and relieving stress (and I don't do it often enough). Eight hours at work, I don't want to think about that (yet I do..), 2 hours of business law, I don't want to think about that, so I'm left thinking about my friends.....

My social life took a complete turn last week with the start of a 40 hour work week. Going from being in school 4-5 days a week with people my age and hanging out every night with people my age to maybe 2-3 nights of seeing friends. Being in school I could manage staying up 'til 2-3am because I didn't have class until 10 or so and had breaks between classes to relax and eat and whatnot. Now I'm "that person" that always has the excuse I have to be up at 6am for work and can't do anything. Berea Janzen, with an excuse to stay in. I'm not complaining, I'm adjusting. Granted not getting a text every 10 minutes is sad for me :-p I know rough life....

So this post is dedicated to my friends. Those who I fail to contact over long periods of time and those who forget me over periods of time. It all brings about the question; Is it being too busy that brings that gap or that they're unimportant and you forget them? It could be either but who wants to admit they forgot about you. I mean, I'd like to thing I leave an impression that people won't forget to talk to me, but I'll just tell myself to keep dreaming, haha. I often hear that about high school friends that lose contact in college. "I haven't talked to them for the past 4 years, I can obviously do without." I hear. Well, this is somewhat true, but why think like that? We all change.

Anyways, I was more thinking my close friends when I started this blog. My best friends that I don't hear from for days. We all have busy lives, but I hate the feeling of giving all my effort when you give none. I hate being so busy, that I just want time alone and can't hang out or call you. :(

This is my last weekend at the restaurant. I enjoyed my short stay, but am glad I will have my weekends back. At least a couple days to see friends I haven't forgot about ;)

Well, only 8 days left til I get a day off. Better than the 18 I started with....

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Scatterbrained and Satisfied

40 hour weeks are amazing. I get SO much done. So much.

I got my computer set up at work today. This is a big deal because everything these days is done on the computer and I had been using coworkers computers which has been annoying and inefficient. Anyways, I got my laptop, docking station, and I think a 24" extra monitor screen. It's amazing. It's mine. (Relatively speaking). Along with a computer came an e-mail address. So I officially have an ABB e-mail. Kind of exciting, and a little scary. It's weird having a work phone, computer, e-mail, because they are strictly for work and although it'd be nice to show off, I don't want the whole world exposed to my work stuff obviously.

I worked on my project more today at work. I should be done with all the prelim stuff tomorrow. Then to decide how to move forward. Exciting non the less! :)

I sat in traffic too long today. It's a little frustrating to be jerking back and forth in your car as you accelerate and brake with traffic. I've been in the habit of beginning every day with a Hazelnut iced coffee from McDonalds for under $2. They're so good and give me caffeine to wake up at 7am. But, it's money that doesn't NEED to be spent :-\. I need to get espresso beans to start making lattes here at home. Maybe make a big batch and keep it cool? Aka iced coffee? I should...

So my dad had a question about the capabilities of a problem being solved in Excel. I was kind of excited because I've done so much school work with Excel, but his was a legit question. Well it took me all of 20-30 minutes to figure out. :)

Spent the past hour or 2 customizing colors on a bike for my brother. Excited to see what he chooses...

I know I've had a productive day when I find time to blog because it's not something I have to do, but like doing when I have time. Hobby?

Alright, I'm going to spend the next hour reading ads and reading ahead for Business Law...
Night world
xoxo

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Emotions

I don't know if it was the amount of actual sunlight I saw this weekend or the usual Berea that I have endless emotions tonight.

Here it is, not even 10 on a Sunday summer night and I am at my house, laying in bed, crazy tired. Friday night I stayed in. Not necessarily on purpose, because I fell asleep and happened to wake up at 6:30am on Saturday, that's the first time in forever I have voluntarily gotten up before 10 on a Saturday. I honestly can't remember. Yet it felt SO good. I did house work, cleaning, cooking, laundry, I got so much done. I went to the beach Saturday from 11am-4pm. My arms got a little red, which is so exciting after spending months in a tanning bed! Saturday night I hung out with some girl friends. Woke up 8ish this morning. Worked my restaurant job at 11, done at 3. Went to the beach for a couple more hours of sun and heat. I watched a movie at my friends tonight. It was a great weekend and I feel very satisfied from it.

I decided to begin a spreadsheet of my spending habits. It's a little annoying tracking all my purchases, but I think for the better and if I get used to it, it'll be able to help me. I still have to figure out some of the technical stuff of Excel, but nothing I haven't been exposed to before.

I go back to work tomorrow. I'm still excited. I've been thinking about my project on and off all weekend trying to think of ideas which is 'exciting'. (I say excited/ing way too much.) I'm still getting used to waking up at 6am. It's weird, and I'm scared of sleeping in. Hopefully my body will adjust quick and I won't have to worry about not waking up.

I feel a bit more settled at my new place. I organized some more stuff and put up pictures in my room which feels great. I need to go to walmart or someplace to print off more current pictures sometime in the near future.

I went grocery shopping today. It was fun. I stuck to the ads and went in with no list, only the objective of finding something to make for lunch. In under $25 I walked away with 3 full bags of groceries. I found some amazing deals and stocked up on some good food. Again, like I said, it was fun.

I saw my ex roommate at the beach this weekend. There are still many hostile emotions I have for the situation. She emotionally hurt me so bad it's hard not to have angry feelings toward her :-\

ANYWAYS, I felt productive this weekend. Even though I don't think that's exactly what's contributing to my over-tiredness. Hmm, whatever.

I have one weekend left at the restaurant, aka 3 shifts. It's for the better. I'm working a 40 hour week, I don't know how I'd be able to handle 2o hour weekends on top of that. OH and a 3 credit class. Yikes. Way to go at over-planning again Berea. It'll be better when my weekend job is cleared. Sad, but necessary.

Alright, time to begin my nightly routine of finding an outfit and packing a lunch. Sweet dreams world. <3

Proverbs 3:5
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.

Friday, June 3, 2011

Interning into something beautiful

I can now say I've made it through my first week as an intern. YAY me! It's honestly awesome, I sometimes have a hard time finding a place to begin. I love the professional atmosphere. Being a part of a mature staff, it's weird being at the bottom of the totem pole, in the office at least. I don't mind it because I'm learning so much, and that's really a good thing. It's also exciting being able to offer my advice and input as an intern and applying what I'm learning in school. Okay, it's only the first week, but I've already gotten my feet wet.
I've met sooo many people. I find it weird meeting someone and them being introduced with their job title. Why is this weird to me? Because as a college student, when I meet people, it's always like; what are you going to school for? But here, it's their job. They're the people I'm working for/with. I have a title. Not a big deal, just my first exposure to 'the real world' per say.
I had lunch this week with about 10 "IE's". Why I put quotes is because they either graduated as an IE or do IE work, anyways, TEN! That is over half the size of my IE class at MSOE and I was eating lunch with them. Exciting.
I've attended various meetings. I get to see how ABB is organized and the atmosphere of the staff. I get to see how different people relate and act. I find it fun.
I spent a couple hours this week doing manual labor. I helped grind conduit and attach bushings to them. It's a different story as to why I was doing it, but it was a good experience. I had never used a grinding wheel before (I don't know if they knew that, but I caught on). I only walked away with a minor sliver from a piece of metal, not bad.
I've met mostly all of the production employees. I think that's awesome! I'm glad I'm already establishing a relationship with the people whom I want to trust me. Production is so important.
I might (most likely) will be joining a soccer league through work. :) why not?
I kind of began my summer project today. I was basically on the production floor asking questions. Talking to employees and finding out what they do. What they don't like. What they do like, etc. It's nice to hear it from them because everyone has aspects they like and don't like about their job, and for them, I'm someone to listen to those things and try and accommodate them and improve production.
Like I said, I've already learned so much this week I can't put it in one post. I could talk all day about the company, or just the factory, or the people, or what I do, or what goes on, but I have to save something for a different day. :) Enjoy your weekend! I know I will be.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Home is where the heart is

I neeeeed to invent an easier way to move. I've moved a lot in my lifetime. Especially since high school. Moving to college dorms, back home for the summer, back to the dorms, to an apartment, to a different apartment. Each time getting rid of unnecessary things, packing, losing things, breaking things. Downsizing and upgrading. Ah! It's just a lot to do and not easy or fun.

So; "home is where the heart is". This was inspired from my short trip 'home' last night. A high school friend whom I'm good friends with through MSOE as well, is moving to Chicago for a job offer and last night was his last night in Wisconsin. I got done with work early and decided to go surprise him in Sheb Falls. Celebrating his goodbye, I obviously ran into a BUNCH of SFHS alumni as well. Kids 3-4 years older and younger than me. It was interesting. People I did and didn't talk to in high school. Point is; being around them all brought us right back to high school. Talking about high school memories, high school friends, gossip. Reminiscing is fun, don't get me wrong, but I'm not the same person I was in high school, but that's how I will always be to those people and visa versa. It was an awkward conversation when the question about where do you go to school and what do you do came up. To the world, MSOE is just another college, I'm just another student with an internship, but telling people back home is weird/different.
Sheboygan Falls reminds me of high school. Things I did in high school. It's hard to see it as anything different. I haven't decided if that's good or bad. It is home. But home is always where my family is, which happens to currently be SF.
Okay, I thought way too deep into my 12 hour trip home. It was spontaneous, I like being spontaneous and what a way to start summer.

To answer my moms question as to how finals went, I feel like I was 2 and 2. Two went good and the other 2 might not have been good....and I actually just found out 2 of my grades, and they're good! One of them was one I thought could be bad. yay.

Oh-and I can't explain enough how much I hate Wisconsin weather. This.Is.Killing.Me. Humid, rain, wind, COLD COLD COLD. Not for me, not for me.

Mk, I think I've gotten enough out for today, and I'm so tired, it's been a long weekend/week/semester/winter for me.

xoxo <3

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Employment: Year 4

Hello world,

Sorry I haven't kept updated on here the past week or so, a lot has happened.
Number 1-I moved this past weekend. New chapter in my life. Getting rid of some things in my life that really needed to go. Bittersweet, leaving a house that I lived in for a year, yeah only a year, but a lot has happened in a year. As an adult, I've had my first experience with major friend "drama". I haven't felt the feeling in years of fighting with a friend over what I feel is stupid stuff. It's sad that relationships get to this point...My biggest regret is trying to make it work. Changing myself to be accepted so that the fighting was put off. Not being myself from the start. :-\

Next--I got a REALL summer job! :-D Working at ABB as an IE intern. Has it set in yet? No. Everything worked out so perfect and happened so quickly, I'm amazed, a little surprised, excited. The usual me with all my emotions.
I submitted my resume last week, got called for an interview Tuesday, and offered the job Tuesday night. Bought my first real suit Monday night, for about a $400 value. This is so exciting in so many ways. First, that I beat my competition. I've been so self-conscious about applying for internships, I always belittle myself. I found it hard even applying for internships because I felt I didn't quite have what I needed or there would be someone better than me. I NEED TO STOP THINKING LIKE THAT! This opportunity has already taught me a lot. I found out that about 16 people were being considered for the position I got. Obviously, I have something that those 16 people didn't have. That's such a great feeling and ego-booster, I needed it! Next--My goal was to get an internship before I graduated college. Check. I'm SO so so blessed to have received this opportunity. Three years in school, in classes, of projects, doing stuff for companies, and now I can work the whole summer for the same company and get experience. I.am.so.excited. It's awesome to put to use what I've been learning in my classes because at times, I wonder why I would ever use certain things.
Another great aspect of this job is the company. It's an international company first of all. Let's hope they need someone to travel! ;) Second, the facility I'll be at is awesome. It's a really nice place and the company is actually very well organized compared to many facilities I've been in.
I could really say much more but we'll see how everything goes. I'm starting Tuesday. Talk about jumping into things. My last final is tomorrow at 11 and I'm done with my junior year. I'll be taking 2 classes over the summer which shouldn't conflict with my job because they are night classes, only 2 nights a week.

Alright, well I have my last final tomorrow I want to study more for. Goodnight, again thanks for your prayers, God has blessed me yet again.
:-D

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

bl00d

Its purple, its blue, you see it as red. It makes some people sick, some people love it. I donate it.
Correction; I try to donate it. I've been attempting since I was 17 and able to. I got denied numerous times (like 8 or 9) because of my lack of iron, but I now take iron tablets and have figured out how to get my iron high enough on the day I donate. I still get denied sometimes. Anyways, this past week, the blood center was on campus so I decided to try donating. I was pleased after passing the iron test and getting my vitals checked. I laid on those uncomfortable stretcher things, with a skirt on, waiting for my nurse. She could tell I was nervous when she got the needle out and told me I should probably look away. I said; "I can take the pain, I just don't like needles." Anyways, it was in and the process began. I was told to uncross my legs to promote blood flow which was not cool 'cause I was wearing a skirt. A few moments in, she said my blood wasn't really flowing. She's sitting there twisting the needle, pushing and pulling. I'm clamping my jaw and squeezing that dumb stress ball every 5 seconds as instructed.
I am staring into space trying not to think about the needle in my arm that is being shoved around in my arm as I become way to comfortable on the stretcher thing. I think to myself how nice a nap would be because I'm so tired. BEREA! I think to myself, am I passing out? My eyes are open and the room begins to fade. My head does a bobble and the nurse asks if I'm okay. I say, "uhm I don't think so". She calls over another nurse and they lay me completely down and ask how I'm feeling. I said, warm so they put a wet towel on my head. The nurse takes out the needle and explains I had a blood clot.
After all that and my blood will likely be thrown away. Sweet.
I didn't save a life. I just felt sickly all day.

My brother made a good point though. I've been denied more times than I've actually given (twice I think?) yet I still try. Why not? I know my blood's good, I know people need it. Reason enough.

For the life of a creature is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for yourselves on the altar; it is the blood that makes atonement for one’s life. Leviticus 17:11