My life is not my own, for I belong to Christ.
Some Fabulous Posts
Some Fabulous Places
Some Fabulous People
Thursday, April 27, 2006
Last night, Kali McEwen cut my and Maria's hair. Check it out:
She only took 3 or so inches off the back (more in the front, obviously), so it's not that much shorter. But it feels short to me - esecially in a ponytail. So I didn't chop it all off or anything... though I've been tempted! What do you think?
Here's the lovely Maria:
Argh! It won't let me put any more! Maybe I'll have to do a THIRD post. (stupid blogger/hello...)
Oh well...look at my xanga for a couple more pictures...
Charity | 5:12 pmComments-[ comments.]
A few weekends ago, I was bold and cut Tamara's hair (at her request). It went something like this...
And ended liiike....
TA-DA!!!!! So, what do you think? Should I go professional!? (hehe just kidding... I think I'd only ever cut my sister's hair...)
Charity | 4:32 pmComments-[ comments.]
Wednesday, April 26, 2006
(Carolyn and Ray have this scale that tells you if you're "under weight", "normal", or "overweight". I weighed myself and came back excited...)
Me: Guess what, guys! It says I'm normal!
Carolyn: Hmm... there must be something wrong with it...
Me: Hey, if it was Fall, it'd be almost Thanksgiving! I mean, if it was Fall in the U.S. I mean... Since it's fall here..... Aw, you know what I mean!
Maria: They don't have Thanksgiving here, do they? *pause* 'Cause the Pilgrims went to America, not Australia...right?
Me: Mommy, my back hurts.
Mom: I'm sorry...
Me: *sniff* No one cares that I have scholeosis [no idea how to spell that] and that my back is crooked like a question mark - just like Forest Gump!
Dad: Run, Charity! RUN!!
Coming soon - The Way of the Aussies!!! (Maria and I are working on it)
Song of the post ~ "You" by Switchfoot
Charity | 1:03 pmComments-[ comments.]
Saturday, April 22, 2006
Elizabeth Enas wrote the following while sitting in the library. She said somehow, this person who walked by reminded her of ECHO. I thought it was beautiful, and it brought tears to my eyes. I hope some of you appreciate it as I did...
"As I sit in the M. C. Library, someone walks by, and somehow I smell astrange, yet recognizable whiff: the distinctive scent of ECHO. I wish Iknew what it was - that tangy, summery, invigorating breeze. Maybe it’s a combination of sunscreen, sunbaked mulch, deodorant, bug spray, chlorine, blossoming fruit trees, and flip-flops.
Whatever the scent is, it makes me want to drive a golf-cart as fast asit can down a dusty, gravel road...
I want to feel the breeze against my sweaty, sunburned face, to be sillywith my friends who are just as sunburned and sweaty as me...
I want to go to Wal-Mart again with a group of twenty kids, all laughingas we try to find the best deals in candy, white T-shirts, ice cream, andcream soda...
I want to bodysurf in the Gulf again, as we endeavor to keep our camerasfrom getting wet while snapping as many pictures as possible...
I want to sit on a picnic bench, trying to catch a breeze from the noisyfans as I write in my quiet time notebook...
I want to drink the sickeningly sweet strawberry and chocolate milk thatcooled us off when we took a ‘water’ break...
I want to realize again how refreshing a cool, clean shower can be, whenyou've been working hard in the hot sun and your body is filthy...
I want to hang out in the air-conditioned office, singing along to Weezer and the radio, playing Memory, or just chatting about anything andeverything under the sun...
I want to sit under the tin roof of the tool shop, listening to thetorrential downpour and taking a little breather from the work...
I want to lie in a sleeping bag on a hard floor again, the variouswhispered conversations lulling me to sleep...
I want to sit in a packed van for four days, laughing, teasing,discussing, playing games, listening to music, singing psalms, sleeping,and eating...
All the memories that come back, after such an small thing as smelling afamiliar scent. It takes me a moment to realize that I'm several hundredmiles away, that I'm not in the hot, humid farm ECHO, but in a quiet,air-conditioned library. I wish my mind could take my body with it as itflutters back to the warm, wonderful memories of the last two summers."
And here I am, even further away... some of these same ECHO memories bring both joy and pain as I realize that the time is coming around once again that others will share similar experiences. And I can't take part in them. Though, rather than sit and cry, I know I need to instead be thankful for the times that I had there. Just the simplist little memory from my ECHO trips brings a smile to my face... I hope that God immensly blesses this summer's ECHO trips. May you who are going work hard, learn a lot, and come back with the same huge smile on your face that I had when I returned. (And you who went last summer, don't even think about saying something like, "What smile!? You girls were bawling when we got back!" )
Song of the post ~ Beverly Hills
Now how many memories does THIS song bring back!? I would have put "We Are All on Drugs", but I don't want to offend anyone....
Charity | 8:00 amComments-[ comments.]
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
"Behold how good and how pleasant a thing it is when brothers dwell together in unity."
This good and pleasant thing was demonstrated well at Dixon's Creek this past weekend. It really was a beautiful thing to see the fellowship amoung brothers and sisters in Christ. I am confident that God was glorified in what went on during the camp. I think maybe because the RP churches are smaller here that younger and older people talk and relate to each other more and better. That's just my observation.
There was no one exactly my age, but I had a wonderful time hanging out with many older and younger people. I especially had fun with Lara Nelson and the Emily, Meg, and Bessie Mickelsons (whom I affectionately entitled "Ily", "Egg", and "Essie". Hey they called me "Cha" and "Ity". What's a girl to do?!). The talks were on "Adorning the Gospel" - at home, at work, and at church. They were very beneficial. Josh McEwen led the youth discussion group, and of course that was very enjoyable. :-)
I didn't sleep very well at camp. It was due to many different reasons - a different bed, snoring, rain etc. On Sunday morning, I got up sort of early and was walking around outside. Josh McEwen saw me and wished me a good morning and asked "how I was going". I told him I didn't sleep well, but that I was pretty good otherwise. He then said, "Well, I'm really glad that you're here in Australia, Charity. Even if you don't sleep well." That was encouraging to me.
It was all sunshine when we got there on Friday and rained consistantly from Friday night until Sunday. On Monday the sun came out again just in time to be warm when we said our goodbye's and departed. The camp was filled with fun activities - including footy (which I did not participate in, knowing I'd only embarrass myself ;-) I had fun watching, though), soccer in the mud (I did participate in this), a dress-up dinner (just wait till you see pictures of my 'costume'...), dancing, playing on the playground (you are never too young to swing! Oh and I proudly accomplished my goal of going across the monkey bars on the last day!), taking walks, playing games (including a Sunday night game of "Bible spoons". Since it was the Lord's Day, ,we decided that anyone who didn't get a spoon at the end of each round had to quote a scripture verse aloud) and much more. It was very different than Covfamikoi, but wonderful in a different sort of way.
The food was excellent, thanks to Mr. and Mrs. McEwen!!! :-D Though the camp was much enjoyed, I was glad to go home. I was so exhausted when we got home, but slept very well last night. I took lots of pictures, and hopefully Maria and I will post them later today.
Song of the post ~ "Dare You To Move" by Switchfoot
Charity | 4:43 pmComments-[ comments.]
Thursday, April 13, 2006
...I can tell by your accent!" It's kind of strange to go into a store and have random people say this. Grocers will smile and say, "So how long have you been in Australia?" and other questions like that. Yesterday in Savers (a store kind of like Goodwill), some girl said to Maria,"Say chocolate!" and Maria kind of looked at her weird and said it. The girl and her friend laughed like it was the funniest thing they'd ever heard and cried, "You've made my day!" Then when we went to buy our things, the lady at the cash register started asking us questions about when and why we came to Australia. These are the questions we are regularly asked:
"You're from America, aren't you?"
"When did you get here?"
"Why did you decide to come?"
"It's is permanent or what?"
(then looking at us kids)
"How do you like it here?"
"How's school? / Was it hard adjusting to a new school?"
"It must have been hard leaving all your friends behind, huh?"
Then they smile and say something like, "Enjoy your time! Come back here soon!"
Someday soon I am going to post a list of Australian 'lingo' so you can all learn the lovely little phrases to your heart's content. ;-)
Tomorrow until Monday we'll be at Dixon's Creek. It's like Covfamikoi only in that it is their presbytery's family camp. Sarah McEwen has been trying to warn us not to picture anything like Cov. or International Conference in our minds when we go. She said it's basically camping with the dirt and all that good stuff. She told us, "It's not even as nice as the Youth Group camping trip..." So hopefully our expectations won't be too high. There are going to be around 90 people this year. Thanks to us handy dandy Americans, that's at least 9 more than last year! :-) We'll take lots of pictures and post them later. Have a good Easter, everyone!
Song of the post ~ "Psalm 24" by The Sons of Korah
(This is just a sample)
Charity | 3:00 pmComments-[ comments.]
Saturday, April 08, 2006
It's one of those stories that makes me want to laugh and cry and scream all at the same time. It's the story that draws you in and demands your attention and takes your emotions. You're left with no choice but to respond with your all as the story almost comes to life. It's the story that you shudder through during the terror only because you know in the end it's more than worth it for that amazing feeling and sense of beauty and wonder and victory. I love it! I love the friendship, the loyalty, the good vs. evil. I love how it has five different endings that leave you satisfied as everything seems to be put back in the right place - the way it should be. I love the quotes, the music, everything. In a way, I wish I could sort of speed-watch it. Though I know it wouldn't be nearly as meaningful if it didn't take so long to tell the whole story. I've truly never thought that I could even come close to having the courage to fight in a war or something until Aragorn cries, "For Frodo!" before they charge to meet the orcs in battle. It makes me feel like charging up right along with them! (hehe)
I wish I could remember more specific quotes from it. Here is one that always strikes me (and I'm sure many other people) as wonderful and powerful:
"I can't carry it for you, Mr. Frodo. But I can carry you!"
*sigh* It gives me more goosebumps... Matthew and Casey have never seen any of the LOTR. One of my missions while I'm here is to introduce them to all three extended editions. (Perhaps not all in the same sitting, though.) Even if they don't love them, I'll enjoy seeing them again. Hmm...makes me think of the LOTR marathon at the Rays' last year. I seem to also recall a certian instance of being soaked with water by certian un-named persons... ;-)
Oh, by the way. As of yesterday, we are officially no longer home-owners. It's sad, but good that we sold our house. I really miss it already, though. I love our home here, too...but, of course, it's not the same.
Song of the post ~ "Concerning Hobbits" from the LOTR soundtrack
Charity | 12:10 pmComments-[ comments.]
Thursday, April 06, 2006
Today is Maria's 15th birthday. Be sure and leave her some love on her blog!!! We don't have much planned for her today... we're having the Plukes' over tonight and are having cake and ice cream. Get this! My mom spent seven hours yesterday making bagles for Maria's birthday breakfast! And she's gonna spend a few more hours making a special cake for her! Birthdays are made special by food in our family. :-) Don't forget the monkeybread - a Blackwood family tradition! I think we might have that on Saturday. We tried to convince my mom to have it in February in honor of Allen's birthday, but she said no just because he isn't here (yet)! Oh well, at least Zachary will be here for his birthday!!
Well I am going to say some nice things about my sister. Partly because it's her birthday, partly because I was inspired by her last post, but mostly because I love her.
Maria is one of the funniest persons I know. I am constantly laughing at/with her in our room. And the thing that makes her so funny is that she can be serious when she's saying something hilarious! I always crack up when I try to do that. Let's see... Maria has the prettiest hair ever. Sometimes I'm a little jealous of her curls and color! :-) Maria is a good listener. This is great because I talk a LOT and sometimes don't leave room for her to get her say in. Maria knows pretty much everything about me. If she hasn't heard it from me myself, then she has learned it from listening to my phone conversations with other people! ;-) I talk to her (and Tamara) about things I would never tell other people. We have such great times in our room! Okay, so we're a little on the loud side most of the time, but hey, it's probably just genetic. Maria is definitely one of my closest friends and I'm glad I will always be friends with her! We kind of have to stick together. :-)
HAPPY BIRTHDAY, MARIA! I LOVE YOU!
Song of the post ~ "Dancing in the Moonlight" by Toploader.
We girls were listening to the "A Walk to Remember" soundtrack today. Gotta love those songs!
Charity | 4:23 pmComments-[ comments.]
Tuesday, April 04, 2006
Random title for a random post. I don't really have anything specific to say. So I'll just keep rambling till I get tired. ;-) Hmm...what to say... This is a first - I can't think of anything to say at all! Oh I know! I'll rant about Daylight Savings Time.
I HATE IT! Okay...maybe hate is a strong word. I am just kind of annoyed because now it's going to be even harder to call people back in the States! It's turning to Autumn here, so even though you "Spring forward", we "Fall back". I don't mind the actual hour change. I kind of liked getting an extra hour to sleep in on Sunday morning. :-) But it's overall change is going to be hard...
Speaking of changes, it's getting pretty cold here. Today isn't too bad, but the past couple days have been pretty cold and on the rainy side. Yesterday we even turned on our heater in our living room. I know, I know, I shouldn't complain. I mean, we got a chance to skip part of Winter and come into the Summer sunshine. It's like... now we're suffering the consequences.
On to more serious subjects...
Job 1:20 says:
"Naked I came from my mothers womb
And naked shall I depart.
The Lord gives, and the Lord takes away.
Blessed be the name of the Lord."
Why is that so hard to say?
Psalm 18:30 says:
"As for God, His way is perfect..."
Why is that so hard to trust?
Proverbs 3:5 says:
"Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding."
Why is that so hard to do?
I'm not really looking for answers from you. I just have some heavy questions on my mind, and those are a couple of them. Have a good week, All. And remember to smile. :-)
Song of the post ~ Smile Like You Mean It" by The Killers
Charity | 4:08 pmComments-[ comments.]