Simplicity

I promise this isn’t going to turn into an art blog.
At least not only an art blog…
But, this pic is from last semester. For almost a whole semester, we worked only in black and white in Design I. It got pretty old, and I was beyond excited when we finally hit color. However, sometimes sticking to strictly b&w can yield some interesting results. So, whether it be with achromatic, monochromatic, analogous, or some other limited pallet, I challenge you to challenge yourself and try something simple.

Self-Portrait

This is me. Well, my rendition of a photo of me. It doesn’t look exactly like me… but I like the results. Drawing is so much fun, and painting is even better!

Time Flies

Everyone keeps telling me that the older you get, the faster time moves.

I’m starting to believe them.

Here I am sitting in my dorm room like any other night and filling out end-of-the-year surveys.

Just a few months ago I was hiking up hills winded as can be, wondering what to do when I walked into the caf (can I go to more than one line? is it dorky to pick up a tray? who should I sit with?), and sitting awkwardly in my dorm during down times not knowing what to do without a couch, TV, or family.

Now, I complain about the hills only when I’m carrying twenty pounds of art supplies, my friends and I just know we’ll be in the caf at six (but we still send out the text for tradition’s sake), I get all the food out of all the lines I want, and my room has become my room.

These past two semesters have gone by so quickly, yet so much has happened! I have grown in many ways, met awesome new people, seen friends get engaged and married, made major career decisions, and seen parts of the state I never knew existed. It has been a great year.

Although I’m sad and slightly bewildered at seeing it come to an end, I’m excited for the summer (who isn’t?) and happy knowing that I’ll get to be back here with all these awesome people again next year (Lord willing!).

Now, to survive exam week…

Language Light Bulbs

The other day, my friend told me that, statistically, once you learn around seven languages, you can learn any language you want. You break through the language barrier or something and it becomes easy.

He took this as a challenge. I find it awesome, but I know I don’t have it in me.

I’m fluent in English (lol) and am learning Spanish. As that same friend who is also learning Spanish told me, we are verging on the “functionally fluent” point, if we learn to use everything we know. But that’s it for me. I can say “thanks” in German and French… but that doesn’t count for much… or anything really.

Let’s go back a few years. I was first introduced to Spanish as a nine-weeks class in 7th grade. Then came 8th grade and I got it for the whole year. Along came high school and I landed in the hardest teacher’s Spanish class who actually expected me to learn. Somehow, I managed to get that teacher all three years of Spanish in high school. Looking back, I could not be more thankful. I’ve gone back and forth between wanting to take the classes, get the grade, and get out and wanting to actually learn how to speak Spanish. Now, I’m finally in it for the long haul. With a trip to Mexico only a month and a half away (eep!), I’m rolling my Spanish every chance I get.

Since I got to the point of realizing “hey, I actually can learn another language!”, other ideas have popped their ways into my head. I remember that tough high school teacher saying that Italian was so similar to Spanish that you could practically get by in Italy with nothing but a fluent Spanish background. So, maybe this is taking the easy way out, but I started to wonder, could I learn Italian?

This is me getting some gumption I never imagined I’d have. I mean, yeah, languages are cool. But could I know two, let alone three? The answer is, probably not. Actually, the answer is heck yes I could. However, the reality is, I probably won’t. But hey, we’ll see where  life takes me.

Any advice?

The City

Life is more fun with a little creativity. One of my best friends and I grabbed this idea off of Pinterest and made it our own. I’m pretty happy with the result.

Inside or Out

Lately, a few things have popped out at me without me asking.

1. “The Outsiders” by Needtobreathe,

2. Ephesians 5, especially verse 4, and

3. Proverbs 15:4

The second two each discuss the things that come out of our mouths. Too often it is easy to let just anything slip out without even thinking about the effect it has. I’m just as guilty as the next guy of relaying a not-so-nice joke I heard because it was just too funny to keep quiet or of commenting on some actor’s six pack. It’s so easy to do and so prevalent that I barely think twice about it.

But this hasn’t always been the case. When I started high school, I ran into different things that I had, of course, heard or seen on TV, but didn’t really think of as reality. When all of a sudden “that’s what she said” and every other (far worse) phrase in the book were whirling around me at school and even at church, it bothered me. For some reason, it made me feel a little uncomfortable. But, all my church friends were doing it, so it must not be that bad, right? First I started laughing at jokes out of politeness, and then I did because I didn’t want people to think I was a goody-two-shoes or just plain boring. Gradually, very gradually, it became normal. It was so gradual that I hardly noticed it. I never really wanted to imitate that kind of humor, and always–deep down–it made my stomach churn a little. But it was normal, so it was okay.

“Shortfalls and little sins
Close calls where no one wins
Stand tall but running thin
I’m wearing thin
Oh, why are we keeping score?”

Then, college came along. I made the difficult decision to attend a Christian school. I had never wanted to go to a Christian school, but here I came–that’s a story for another day. Although I was already blessed with the best boyfriend I could ever ask for and some other great friends at home, I met some awesome friends at school. They live their lives for God, not themselves. Many of our conversations consist of God, culture, people, our dreams… stuff that actually matters. Don’t worry–we have our fun, too. Sometimes we take off and drive up a mountain just to see where it leads, or we watch Brooke figure out how to lazily drink her water while laying on the floor. We laugh, a lot. And, not one of us is perfect. Sometimes we make or laugh at dirty jokes. Sometimes we get mad, or talk about other people, or bash our teachers, or complain a lot. But we keep each other in check. We remind each other of what’s really important. We remind each other that the desires of this world are not what count. So, over the past eight months, I have become used to this atmosphere.

Over the past eight months, I have gone back and forth from home to school. I have felt pressure to act certain, different ways at each place. I have conformed when necessary, but begrudgingly at times. And through it all I have found that I would rather not conform. I have discovered that following God–watching my tongue, watching my thoughts, and doing what I know to be right–returns much more happiness than the alternative. Is it easy? No. Do I fail? YES. Is it hard to be looked at as an outsider by my friends? Yes. Will I give up? No.

“I’ve been wondering if we start sinking
Could we stand our ground?”

I have made a decision. I will, to the best of my ability, live for God and no one else. Sometimes, it’s better on the outside.

“We’ve finally come to terms
We are the outsiders

“On the outside, you’re free to roam
On the outside, we’ve found a home
On the outside, there’s more to see
On the outside, we choose to be”

Hello, There.

I can’t promise how often or how interesting this blog will be, but here it is. Sometimes there’s just something that needs to be said or shared. I’m not going to get super political or anything like that. I just want to talk about life. I think one thing the internet is good at is helping us all create a written life story. Although it’s often more fiction than non, we can still get a little taste of who each other is, or at least who he/she wants to be. My blog will likely be a mix of both. I’ll tell some things like they are, and other times I’ll share wishes and dreams. What’s life without some dreaming, anyway? I hope you enjoy and don’t find me too crazy in the end 🙂

Welcome to my World

This is one of the most beautiful places near my school. Looking out at the vastness of creation just makes my heart jump.

“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”
C.S. Lewis