I Got Lost On A Retreat (But I survived! :D) And I Have Pictures To Tell The Tale

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Well, this is gonna be a random typical post with a random typical person and random typical pictures, glad you could stop by! 😀 Heya everyone! Happy Monday and the start of a long painful slow death.

I don’t know if you guys like travel posts, but I sure do! So, here goes before my brother finds our DVDs and I have to start school. XD

Anyway, last weekend was a pretty amazing weekend, one being that it was the weekend and two being that I got to go on my church’s youth winter retreat, which is a big deal considering there’s only like 10 of us and the last retreat was way back in 2008. And I fell hard for the whole thing.

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The world was quiet there. Still. Cold. Welcoming. The roads just stretched on and on and if I had the wheel, I wouldn’t have stopped driving. I also woulda crashed. 😛 But thankfully, neither happened. What did happen was a staying up late Bible study wherein we talked about the Rapture (still trying to figure out why), pizza, worship, and goofing around. Oh, and playing cards past 2. And than sharing our testimonies til 3.

I dunno, it was weird, but it was nice, too. 🙂

But forget that- that’s not the best part. XD

I’ve been trying for weeks now to practice shooting in manual- which is so stinkin’ hard at night- and when we came there I immediately let everyone know I wasn’t gonna follow lights out because the stars were there and who needs sleep when you have the stars?

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So while everyone was playing cards, I walked around the place. Quiet. Still. Semi-creepy. I like to think I got better at night photography.

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As for the stars themselves… I TRIED KAY. I tried.

Also, it’s humanly impossible to rewrite the stars friends. They’re too far up.

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That was… pathetic.

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Also pathetic. I can’t believe I took this at a shutter speed of 30 seconds, and this was all I got. *facesmacks* Someone give me tips or something please.

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Slightly better.

I was so excited when I took these photos though- I actually laid on the ground and raised my camera up- remind me to bring a tripod next time. XD I’m pretty sure I left tons of room for improvement- but hey, I walked around in the cold air by myself and had my lens fogged up. It was worth it. 🙂

And then I did the same thing again after like.. 4 hours of sleep because I was busy muttering Galatians at 3 and insomnia wasn’t a friendly, but it was morning, the sun was coming up, and there’s a part where Gale convinces her mom to let her stay up early to shoot the sunrise.

I wasn’t gonna let the opportunity slip by my window!

I even got two very groggy friends to come with me at 7:14 AM. And we set out in jammies.

No sun.

Nothing. Nada.

Rats!

Again, though, it was worth it- no regrets here. 😀

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There’s a lot of good memories.

Jogging to the lodge for breakfast and covertly sneaking bacon.

Feeling silly because we had to sing  really upbeat version of Jesus Loves Me.

Spending the morning reading the Word.

Scrambling to the gym and playing volleyball. Losing. I can’t serve- my dumb fist can take a punch, but not a spike. -_-

Playing ball hockey with a friend (also dude, thanks for not rubbing it in my face that I’m bad at it)

Trying to reach a ridiculously high curl up bar.

Giving up and heading outside where it was quiet and still and peaceful.

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Laughing at the poor unfortunates who trapped themselves in the cycle of fear that was the see-saw, and vowing to post their reactions online. I didn’t because I’m nice.

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Walking to the tiny lake and skipping rocks over the frozen surface. It made a satisfying thud sound.

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Scaling a tree and staying there while everyone was busy trying to throw a rock to the other side. And failing. I have a lot of blackmail to use now.

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Walking around, laughing with friends, forgetting that I’m not 10 and school starts day after tomorrow and so much is depending on me not messing up. Enjoying fresh air and being goofy. (Well, I’m always goofy but you know what I mean)

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Eating lunch and not caring about the lack of internet or that I didn’t bring my laptop, because who needs a screen when there a people around you and you’re here, aren’t you? 🙂

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Getting lost and just taking picture after picture because finally, manual works, hooray! I also really like these pictures. I got something really close to a sunflare. 😀

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Just enjoying being alone and happy because I could walk wherever I wanted and not worry about my parents being worried I’d be kidnapped and taken to Budapest to work for the FBI. XD When you’re close to the city, everything’s gotta be worried about.

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Hammering out tunes on the old piano in the corner.

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Driving away and just staring at all the farms and barns and horses and honestly, the scene reminds me of Just Come Home and now I really wanna finish that book XD Who knew two hours of fields was the push I needed? Not me.

I think I’ve rambled on long enough- but I’ll finish with saying that I’m grateful I got to go. I was planning to grumble about it to myself, but I guess God changed my heart because I have so much to be grateful for about that. For bacon, duh. For wandering. For the woods. For that guy who believed I could jump a fence if I tried hard enough. For friends. For family. For being challenged to love the Bible more.

What did I just say about rambling XD

Alright. Get to work guys- have a great Monday!

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Scribble Scrabble: Come Behold The Wonderous Mystery And Comftyness

I have no excuses for this.

Zero.

Nothing to defend how horrible, utterly horrible this whole thing is.  And just when I thought I was doing pretty good at the whole YouTube thing, the background is a horrible mess. Remind me next time to use a recorder. Anyhoo. Hopefully the audio will be less terrible than the cover for it? 🙂

Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery is one of my favorite songs, not just because it’s not necessarily a Christmas song, and not just because Matt Papa is awesome (he is), but the message is.. well, of hope. And we could use some of that. Hope you enjoy the cover and aren’t too disgusted with me at the completely aesthetic-less background.

Come Behold The Wondrous Mystery...

🙂

Now the fun, semi better part! BIBPC! 😀 This is for the first category, cozy!

Jo Team Bear Category 1

Don’t that look cozy? No? If this looks off, that’s because it is. XD I’m trying to master the art of manual photography. It’s harder than I thought it would be. But it’s fun too, so that makes up for it! 😛 Go Team Bear! (Seriously, though, I loved setting this up! I just wish I got the Christmas lights I spent a goo ten minutes preparing in the shot. Humph!)

Let’s see, what else is there that may be considered newsworthy?

A Wrinkle In Time was a confusing, interesting, mind-boggling book, and I’m glad I read it. Like, really glad. But also really confused. XD Next to tackle is Neil Flambe And the Marco Polo Murders. This should be interesting.

Currently enjoying The Winter Soldier because why not and plus it’s story research (I’m serious, y’all!) Sending emails and eating croutons. Planning for the next epic failure of a carol cover.

And writing this wee story for Write Christmas. Looking forward to that.

This post has been so not original. But I hope you enjoyed it anyway. 🙂

Life Update: Enjoying The Little Blessings- Emphasis on “Little”

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I have spent like ten minutes trying to come up with an opening to this ramble, but I’ll just scrap it and go for saying that I, like the general population, am tired and weary and seriously candy- deprived. Reformation Day (or Halloween for you utter heathens) couldn’t come soon enough. But I’m here, just resting. I gotta say it’s a relief.

Along with my cousin Jj who’s as sarcastic as me, I can’t imagine who on earth would even bother to read about my day. Unlike Jj, that little annoy- uh… person, I have decided to go ahead anyway. 😛

-Enjoyed seeing the sky change from pitch black to a light blue, and not hearing a single soul bother me

-happily watched scenes from movies on YT and somehow wasn’t guilty

-spent some time stretching (i.e splits, dangling off beams, and handstands XD)

-actually made a decent breakfast (not a granola bar or a piece of fruit)

– got to go skating (EEEP!!) for the first time in 7 months, somehow tried skating backwards without stumbling

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-listened to The Toy and still have very conflicting opinions on it (on one hand I love how everyone got together JASON HEY MAN, and on the other hand I felt very much made POLEHAUS DON’T YOU KNOW GOING DOWNTOWN CAN BE TRAMATIZING)

-The absolutely best thing ever: I went to the library and got BOOKS. BOOKS. BOOKS!

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(Look at that amazing compilation of beauty and man I can’t believe how lovely it is I can’t breathe someone get me more books I got Wonder y’all)

I don’t know why I’m listing all these little things that don’t mean much to anyone except me, but to sum up, these little blessings put a smile on my face, and that goes a long way.

Life doesn’t have to be big huge exciting things. Sometimes God sends you little things to enjoy, to show you He cares.

I hope you find ’em too. 🙂 Happy Saturday!

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Gotcha There, Didn’t I? ;) Another Edition Of Scribble Scrabble

If you were thinking the last post was all I was going to do, then you, my friend have been sorely terribly horribly very mistaken! *chuckles evilly* XD

 

Anyway, at the time of writing, it’s Sunday afternoon. Sunday afternoons are good for naps, and rest, and enjoying the sunlight. And replotting, rewriting, and deleting old drafts. And planning of the future days, weeks, down to the miniscule hours if you’re that picky. (It never goes the way we’d planned, but hey, one can dream!) Rest is very good to dull and weary and tired bones, dontcha think?

 

So, without further ado.. the next edition of Scribble Scrabble!

(I really don’t know why I give these random posts so much fanfare, but oh well.)

 

Thing 1! An Enjoyable Afternoon On The Front Porch

There’s nothing like staring in the clouds, not having a care in the world, enjoying the fresh air, the birds up ahead, the sun on your face.

Except when you have to go inside cause it’s too hot, but while it lasts, enjoy!

Except I didn’t take pictures of the sky, the clouds, or the sun. I did take pictures of..

Old bikes. *grins sheepishly* I miss riding on a bike, going nowhere. It’s just really relaxing, y’know? Anyhoo, I got to skim through a good book and devour frozen blueberries, so we’re all good.
Thing 2! Donuts
 Thing 3! A Drive Down The Road
   Well, isn’t this random.
   It is. It’s a random topic from a random post from a random blog from a random person. Hopefully you’re into random things.
 And this random is  trio of pictures on a drive. Enjoy.
Thing 4! The Inevitable Future Of The Inevitability Of School And The Future In General
  It’s August. We only have 25 more days of it. And after that, the dreaded thing called school will come on full force. And work. From now on everything must be taken in account of homework, schedules, and whether or not we have an ample amount of caffeine.
(Unless y’alls are starting already, or are about to, then more power to ya!)
This was my attempt at planning for the inevitable future. A rather poor attempt, if I’m honest with myself. Mostly because I never follow my schedule. 😛 But I have to. This time. Or at least die trying. It’s a noble cause, right?
 I guess I’m reluctant to leave the summer behind. Even if my summer was mostly spent behind a screen.
DSC_0449 <—- the screen I spent most of my summer behind. I did other things too!
   There have been so much amazing things going on, and I want to hold on to it. But on the other hand I can’t wait to see what will happen in the future. Different grade, new things, new courses. It hasn’t all been easy- school and life right now are a wonderful combination of stress. But I’m still looking forward to it.
 You’d be excited too if you saw all these stories pop up. *shushes you*
 Is that it?
 Yes, that’s it.
 I think that’s it.
 In the words of Somebody, “that’s all I have to say.”
 Now, if you’ll excuse me, I needs must go and work on brainwashing a character. Be seeing you!

 

R&R: Rest & Restart

Restart

Restart. A new day. A new morning. Where you wake up to a new sunrise, or a new cloudy sky, or maybe even snow.

Snow?

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Yep, snow had fallen. Just a tiny little dusting, like icing sugar on a cake.

It’s going to melt soon. Of course it will. Thin snow like this always does.

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But the snow is enough to  cover the hard ground, and when it melts it will sink into the ground and soften it for spring. To restart the ground for planting.

Come to think of it, we all could use a rest, a restart.

When was the last time you were rested? Given a chance to catch your breath from life’s daily struggles? Taken a shift up in how you do things?

Let me guess, not for a while. Life doesn’t always let you stop and think. There’s schedules to meet and places to go and work to be done and things to do. You’ll stop soon. Tomorrow. Next week. Next month. Next year. Probably the only time you think about restarting is when your laptop asks for it or your car stalls. But you need it too.

So for two lazy tranquil weeks you retreat to a lovely cottage on the lake, having not a care in the world, resting, taking a step back from daily life and thinking about changing it up.

It lasts for 14 days, tops. Then you’re back into the grind and rest is gone. You need to restart again. But, since your vacation weeks are over, you have to wait.

A restart is needed. But not now. So you put it off and slowly harden up, like ground without rain. When you finally realize it, you ask for permanent leave.

Or you could follow-up on this invitation:

Matthew 11:28
“Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

You won’t find rest that lasts anywhere except in God. He’s offering it to you.

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So it’s windy and the snow is sticking around on the rooftops and on the ground. A restart for when spring comes.

You need a restart too.

 

Thanks for reading.