Monday, April 23, 2012

Vermont, Venturing, Video

Recently while looking at movies to go see, I found a movie called 'October Baby'. Read about it and it sounded amazing.  Sadly, because it's a Christian movie, it was only showing in select theatres and only in the States. So what did I do? I decided to make a weekend of it and took four students with me to Vermont for the weekend! Our main reason was to go see the movie but we did a lot and had a lot of fun.

When in Vermont, one must go to the Ben and Jerry's ice cream factory. It is where ice cream started, so we went and took the tour to see how their ice cream is made and got some free samples at the end. There are also a lot of fun photo spots.

And what did we find on the side of the highway? Giant whale tails!!  So incredibly random. But I love random, so it was perfect. We convinced Britt and Sarah to run up the hill and take pictures of these tails that are on the side of the highway and beside a giant field. Wish I knew the story behind them.

The town we were next to, Burlington, was so incredibly beautiful.  Right now a giant lake (New York is on the other side) and with so much history and tons of old buildings (if you haven't figured it out yet, I like old buildings).

And then we found an awkward (and random of course), giant dog outside of a green house!  We had to stop to take photos. obviously. :)

In the evening, after sushi and swimming (which happen to be two of my favourite things), we played truth or dare. haha. My ipad has an app for it, so you don't even need to think up the questions. It was quite funny and there were quite a few moments of uncontrollable laughter (the best kind). Jamie ended up having peanut butter smeared all over her face and other people had to do funny things.

And then you get asked the most random questions for truth, such as what is in the photo below? I think we laughed for ten minutes before actually answering it. haha. 

And the movie?  Worth the drive. Would have driven even farther to see it. Check out the trailer at the Official October Baby Website.  Check it out. If you live in the States and it's in a theatre near you, go support it. If not, wait for the video to come out and buy it.  It's about a girl who discovers she's a survivor of an abortion and it's a movie about healing and forgiveness.  Abortion is a hot topic of course and this movie does an incredible job of showing the different aspects of it and consequences and I love the themes of forgiveness and reconciliation mixed throughout.  Bring a box of kleenex though, as you may shed a few tears.

And thus concludes parts of our Vermont Venture!  So fun to discover new states now that I'm living on a different side of the country!

And if you don't hear from me in the next two weeks, it's because I'm lying on a beach in the Caribbean....

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Costco, Caps, Community

One of the things I love about my job is the students. I love being able to connect with them and have a ton of fun, but also have good, inspiring conversations.  The other day, Jamie, Eleasha and I decided we should probably go on an adventure to Costco... to try some samples and to enjoy hot dogs (which are only 1.50 here as opposed to 2.00 in BC.. at least something is cheaper here!)

Although there are hard points about living in community, but the good points definitely outweigh those and I'm learning to appreciate them more and more.  I love having people always around and already being at a certain level of knowing one another that you can connect on a deeper level with far greater ease.

And the laughter. And the jokes. Sometimes I look at the students and marvel that their time at Capernwray is so unique because it's the only time they will ever have a small tight-knit community in this environment. And then I realize that it's the same for me. This is an opportunity that I will probably only get during my time here. So I need to make full use of it. And embrace it with all the good, bad, ugly, wonderful mixed all together. 

And when you get to go on adventures to eat hot dogs and try on hats at the mall, how can you go wrong?  And on a side note, I love love love love the hat i tried on. I'm tempted to go back and buy it. Just need to think of some places I can wear it. Perhaps i will just wear it to work every day just because I can. 

Enjoy the day and wherever your adventure takes you to and whoever you have the opportunity to be with today!

Monday, April 16, 2012

Friends, Freshing (re), Frosty

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art... It has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival."
- C. S. Lewis

A couple weekends ago, I was blessed with the most lovely weekend ever.  A good friend of mine, Cyndi, was in Quebec with a few of her high school French students.  I happened to have a couple days off during her visit, so I was blessed to be able to join them for a wonderful and refreshing weekend.

They stayed in a small town called Dunham in the Eastern Townships (a more English area of Quebec) and they were at the YWAM base there.  So great to see what ywam is doing there and to see other people serving the Lord faithfully in Quebec.  It was encouraging.

On the Saturday, we wandered the town and got to know a few of the local shop owners. There was one woman who has taught in international schools around the world for the last 10 years and she has been collecting things from all the countries she was in and now she has a little store where she sells everything. She was fascinating and I loved talking to her. I also enjoyed Gascon at the antique store.

In the evening, we went to the oldest vineyard in Quebec (such amazing ice wine!) and then went to a cabane a sucre that is located on top of a hill with a stunning view. Took us a while to actually get there as we were a bit mixed up with street names and locations...

I just love the little towns in Quebec. There is SO much history everywhere and the buildings seem like they hold so many stories and rich history. Each building had plaques in front, explaining what the building used to be and how it has changed over the years.

After our evening at the cabane, we all hung out and chatted. I don't remember the last time I laughed that much in one day.  It reminded me of how refreshing laughter and smiling is for the soul. I do laugh and smile frequently but having such a large dose of it was amazing.

Below is a photo of the woman's store. It was called 'dici et la' (from here and there). brilliant. makes me wish i liked teaching so i could become a teacher and travel the world at the same time.

The ywam base is located in a massive mansion. Millions of staircases and a lot of history!

On the Sunday, we went to the church I regularly attend, about twenty minutes north of Montreal. There was a potluck after the service and it was so great to stick around and be able to connect with people. I find when I'm there by myself it's harder to mingle, so I always appreciate having others there.

I feel like I could have spent hours in this town taking photos.. sparks up my creative side again which I'm pretty sure I don't do enough of.

This weekend was an amazing breath of fresh air. Over spring break i think i realized again that I need to get out more. I do get out quite often, but I think I need to find more people in the community to connect with. I was reminded of great friendships and just felt really encouraged in what I'm doing and also encouraged to hear what the Lord is doing in the lives of others.

And I loved getting to know five amazing girls a bit. It reminded me of when I helped out with youth-my favorite part was spending time with them-so much fun.

After our delightful weekend, I started the drive back to Capernwray and came back to find freshly piled snow. Now since I had already transitioned to spring, it is difficult to suddenly make the transition back to winter... we had a week of 25 degrees celcius and then we have snow? 

Normally I would have been frustrated, but it was probably one of the most beautiful snowfalls I have ever seen. And so I just stood outside marveling at the beauty of it and soaking in every bit of it.

And in the morning I was greeted with an even more beautiful scene!!  Ahh snow!! You are beautiful, but I am thankful you are melted for now. :)

And thus concludes an amazing weekend of refreshment with good friends, lots of laughter, enjoying the richness of Quebec culture and soaking in the amazing beauty that surrounds us and is a precious gift!  Until next time...

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Easter, Early, Event

This morning began at 6am for a sunrise service with some of the students. I had planned it and invited people and suddenly remembered that I hadn't actually planned any of the content.

Struck with sudden fear over the fact that I don't know how to lead a sunrise service, I was reminded again, that as we got up early to celebrate Christ's life, it didn't matter how things were run or that everything was nice and polished.

So we read some scripture, sang some songs, prayed and shared communion together. It was a joyous and sweet beginning to Easter Sunday.


Let's celebrate not just today, but every day!