Thursday, September 29, 2005

The (True) Scenario:

After a late night the night before, I found myself on limited sleep as I crawled out of bed at 6:40 (when my alarm is set for 6:00 AM and I am supposed to leave around 7 AM). Luckily, I always have my clothes laid out in the bathroom from the night before. Since today was going to be a big day at one of the shelters, I went with one of my so-to-say more professional outfits. Looking pretty well in the bathroom mirror I got completely ready in there and left the bathroom only to go into my dark bedroom to get some socks out of my dresser and put them on in there, since I had forgot to bring a pair into the bathroom the night before. So I sat on my bed in the dark and put them on....

Sure didn't notice until about 9:30 this morning when I was sitting at a desk working on an application and intake form with a client that I happened to glance down and see that I sure was wearing a brown sock with my black one! And it looked GREAT, let me tell you!

Luckily my dress pants are long, so as long as I'm not sitting down, you can't see my socks....

I'm sure my clients today that might have happened to notice my socks got a kick out of it knowing that they are maybe a little more with it than I was today...HA!

Case-in-point #1 (or is it “point-in-case”?)

Isn’t it funny how we can make things that are really so insignificant such a big deal once we notice them, even though they weren’t causing a problem at all before they were noticed?

Case-in-point #2

Isn’t it interesting how sometimes we can appear so “professional” on the outside, but underneath things can still be a little “off?”

Case-in-point #3

Isn’t it funny how being in the “dark” can totally throw things “off” for a person?

(Whoa…that one is deep….think about it…)

Tuesday, September 27, 2005

Game Night!

I’ve never really like the sociality definition of a social life that consists of Friday nights being the night to go out and socialize.

For me, growing up, Friday night wasn’t much more than a night that I could stay up “past bedtime” simply because there wasn’t school or church the next night. I wasn’t the “typical teenager” who would go out to the mall or to the movies or to friends houses every Friday night, simply because it was Friday night.

Or during my undergraduate years in college for that matter, Friday night never really had a ton of significance in that it was all that special (I mean, what made Friday night a better night to prank rather than Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday night?). Even today, I have NO problem admitting I don’t mind staying home on Friday nights and blogging or just chilling at the house.

And actually, in this day in age, a social life, by my definition, is just as capable of existing without face-to-face interaction anyways—cell phones, instant messenger, etc. We can socialize in many ways other than having to “go” somewhere.

But whatever the case, the societal definition of “a social life” has taken over my life in full force for the past 6 weekends in a row. It’s become a little something we’ve called “Game night!”

If you can count back that far, 6 weekends ago put us at the weekend of August 21st. That days happens to be the birthday of my friend Holly. So, for her birthday, I wanted to get some friends in the area together to celebrate her birthday with her. And being the selfish person I am…HA…I’d had this craving around that time to play games. I’m talking board games…HA! So when I made the suggestion to Holly, she was “game” and said for me to gather some folks and come to her apartment complex and we could hang there and play games and even his her complex’ recreation facility and play some pool, ping pong, and racquetball. So of course, I obliged (since it WAS her birthday and all…HA!)

So after a few phone calls, I had myself, Holly and three other friends (Laura, Makiyo, and Misty) at her apartment complex playing “games.” After some good ping pong tournaments and pretend racquet ball with a tennis ball…HA! I introduced the others to a game I LOVED playing with my family growing up, but hadn’t played in YEARS, till I bought it recently on the internet. It is called “Pit.”

I’m assuming most of you have never heard of or played this game, since the only other person I’ve found so far that has is Misty, so let me tell you this much: this game is an immediate love I’ve found as well as addicting! It is played with cards (though not a normal deck of cards; the special cards that come with the game) and a bell; however the newer versions don’t have the bell, but the bell is what MAKES the game in my opinion…HA! All I will tell you about it is this…it is a VERY fast paced game and it gets EXTREMELY loud, but it is a BLAST! And the more people the more fun!

So in between hands of Pit, I was like, “Guys, I’ll be honest, I’ve been thinking and I’d really like to set up a game night thing with friends like once a month, if y’all would want too.” Well low-and-behold the response was GREAT! They actually said, “I’m game for twice a month!” HA!

So we decided it was official! Game nights would be the 2nd and 4th Friday’s of the month! And can I tell you how excited we all were when we realized that next Friday was the 4th Friday of the month—GAME NIGHT!!

So the next weekend I hosted:

Friday, August 26: Kimberly’s house— Catch Phrase, Taboo, Pit, popcorn, and more Pit. Those in attendance: Kimberly, Holly, Makiyo, Laura, and my cousins Brandon and Preston. Way fun time!

So when Friday, September 2nd crawled around, the Pit vibes were on again. Granted, it wasn’t a 2nd or 4th Friday, but something was in the air (or maybe we all just didn’t want to do homework/grading papers/and such!). We gave in and got together again! Once again at Holly’s complex. This was a reunion of the original “Game Night” crew: Holly, Laura, Makiyo, Misty, and myself. It was more Pit, pool, racquetball, ping pong, and music!

So then it was Friday, September 9th, which was the 2nd Friday of the month—OFFICIAL game night! This night, Makiyo’s mom was in town from Japan, so we were scheduled to get to meet her mom at dinner and then when Makiyo and her mom left to go have mother daughter time, the rest of us were going to go to a movie. Well, it turned out we didn’t get to meet her mom, because she ended up sick and didn’t come to eat with us at Chili’s, but that’s okay, because I still made a colored picture while we were there to hang on the Chili’s wall (it was a give a donation and color a picture to go up on the wall thingy) that had the Japanese flag + the American flag = friends! HA HA! I’m sure besides us, everyone else that sees that picture there will be like… “What?!?!” WWII?!?! Oh well… So after dinner, Holly, Laura, and I went and saw “The Exorcism of Emily Rose;” a good movie!

Okay, so now we have officially had “Game Night” 4 weekends in a row…you KNOW my study habits are slacking, so I was DETERMINED I wasn’t going to give in for game night on September 16th (or was I). Though I originally said I wouldn’t, I found out that that day was Makiyo’s birthday (why she hadn’t told us BEFORE the night before is beyond me…HA!) So I gave in…HA!

September 16th: Holly’s complex. We baked a red velvet cake and wrote in powered sugar a bad word in Japanese on it…HA! We made homemade guacamole…HECK YES! And we had chicken casserole! YUM! After eating then we hit the recreation center in the complex and played none other than—PIT! We even had a random guy we didn’t know from the complex there join us and play with us! HA! It was Holly, Laura, Makiyo, Janet, David, Ray (boy from the complex) and me. Like I said, the more people for Pit the more fun!

So then it was this past weekend. And though I’m determined to get disciplined and limit game nights to twice a month, it required us having one this past weekend, which was the 4th Friday of the month. So, once again, we hit Holly’s complex. This time we decided not to do games, but made a big nice dinner and then hit the movies. We had lasagna, salad, and French bread, with brownies for dessert! Then we went and saw Flightplan.

So whether it truly is a night of “game” playing or not, I can honestly tell you I can’t think of a night where anyone involved didn’t have a GREAT time!

There’s something about being around people you love and have fun with that it doesn’t matter how much money you spend or how tired you are from the previous week, you still leave anticipating the next time you’ll get to be together again.

And one more thing that I’ve really enjoyed about our game nights is the fact that we have been able to bring together different “groups” of people and still have a blast. Isn’t it funny how we try not to cross our groups of friends, like our church friends with our school friends. Or our club friends with our non-club friends. Or our ACU friends with our UTA friends. Well, we’ve not let that stop us with these game nights. Makiyo is what I would call a “UTA friend,” while Laura and Misty are both “ACU friends,” but I can tell you now that Laura and Makiyo converse as if they have known each other as long as Makiyo and I have known one another.

Don’t be afraid to join different groups. In a club, don’t be afraid to invite one “clique” as well as another “clique” to a get-together. People are people and we all should just spend time together, forget our “groups!”

P.S....if anyone is interested in joining us for a Game Night, just let one of us know! We are SOOO "game!" Yes, that includes out-of-towners...come on in for a weekend, we'll treat you right! ;)

Note: So, if you know my screenname, you can visit my “pics” which are found on my AIM screenname profile and see pictures from our “Game Nights” posted there!

A New Form of Communication?!?

Can I just comment on how extremely interesting, as well as funny, it is that blogging has become a new form of communication between friends, couples, family members, etc. HA!

It is so funny how often you find people writing about someone in their blog WANTING that someone to read it there. Like we accept it as another form of "talking"...HA! Sometimes I think it is used as the first source for communicating that "issue" to that person, but sometimes it is used as another resort. Kinda like, "well, I've tried telling that person, but that didn't seem to work..." or "Okay, I know I can't call that person up and tell them, that won't go over too well, but maybe I'll let them read it for them self here..."

It amuzes me! HA!

But, hey, I'm guilty as are others I know, so no name calling! It's just that it has recently been brought to my attention, so I wanted to note it!

[In no way am I saying it is a bad thing, or necessarily the right thing. I'm just saying it is up to the people involved and the issue at hand...HA!]

Monday, September 26, 2005

First You've Got to Love Yourself...

This is going to be short sweet and to the point because I've got to get to bed...

But I was pondering some thoughts tonight, trying to explain a person's behavior to myself. [Us psychology people are ALWAYS doing this sort of thing...HA!] Anyways...

I think some people are constantly seeking outside approval and need people to constantly be telling them of their approval of them. They want constant empathy or even sympathy for their situation. With these individuals I think many times it is important to look back and see if in that situation the person is needing all that feedback to justify their own approval of them self.

I think a lot comes down to self-examination and seeing if YOU alone approve of yourself.

First you've got to love yourself.

Many times those who don't love themselves are in dyer need for approval and feedback from others, especially if they know where they can go to get the approval they are seeking.

Do you love yourself?

[A quick analysis of this situation would be to explain it as low self-esteem, but I like to look more into it and delve into the rest of the story...HA!]

Monday's Picture Blog!

[Give this picture it's best caption! Come up with a unique/fun caption for this picture and tomorrow I'll pick the best response! If you can't come up with a good caption, leave me a message anyways telling me which caption thus far you like the best (or better yet, come back around the evening time and judge from all the captions that had been left throughout the day)! Have fun!] Posted by Picasa

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Rita Hit Me Today…

It was today that I was truly hit by Rita. It hit at about 6:30 AM and it came in the form of an AIM profile that went something like this…

Please keep my family in your thoughts and prayers as they live in Matagorda and it is in the direct path of Rita.

This was what broke me this morning….it made it all become real….

Katrina was a very sad situation. And it’s even sadder that that situation is going to be pushed aside and overlooked for a while now with the new girl on the block, Rita. I can only imagine the thoughts going through the many Katrina survivors’ heads, as MANY of them are still going without many needs. For the next few days I can see them reliving the days immediately following the catastrophe—feeling ignored.

And while I do not want to diminish the event of Katrina, I will state that you can’t fully feel the impact of a situation like that unless you are directly involved with it in the sense that it either happened to you, or it happened to someone you know, or you dedicated your time to aiding to those who experienced it. And as ashamed as I am that I have not worked directly with any of the victims, I do realize the blessing I have in knowing how lucky my friends and family were that no one I know was a victim. This is what makes Rita different for me….

Rita has “hit home.” Though she is still amidst the waters of the gulf, Rita has already caused enough “hell” in the lives of many. Evacuating is no walk in the park physically, but even more, the toll it can take on an individual mentally is no piece of cake.

And though I knew from the first day that I heard Rita was coming and going to hit southern Texas that I had many friends in the Houston area, I was still truly under the impression that evacuations of Houston would not be necessary. I mean I figured southern Houston might possibly be advised to move north, but I wasn’t thinking northern Houston would be of any concern. I’m thinking…. “oh okay, they’ll get some nice thunderstorms, but nothing more than a good hard down pour and some pretty lightening if you’re lucky.” I’m just that ignorant about hurricanes…

So when I saw the message on AIM this morning it really hit me that, “hey, you have friends that this is totally going to be affecting!”

As I drove to my internship at 7 AM all I could think about was how I have plans for a friends’ get-together for Friday night and I’d be sitting around an apartment, having a good time with some great friends, making dinner, chilling, and at about dinner time we would be having a good time and my friends from Houston would be in the eye of a hurricane.

It’s hard to think about. I immediately wrote myself a note to call my friends to check on their status of their hurricane preparation steps this afternoon between my internship and class time (because I sure wasn’t going to call them at 7 AM…I DO want them to still be my friend!)

So at 4:45 PM, I called one friend to hear her say, “I’m driving” in response to my “what are you up too?” I was shocked to hear she was evacuating as she lives in about the furthest north part of Houston there is. It become even more real then….

As she explained to me the “hellish” journey of trying to evacuate, involving gas situations and 3 mph crawls along the interstate, I couldn’t help but feel helpless. And as one who easily disguises her fear, she refused to let me note any sense of fear or panic from her. But I was still frightened for my friend, though comforted in the feeling of knowing she was getting out…

I then called another friend…

It was so hard to hear the fear in her voice as she explained that though she wanted to leave, she would be staying and sticking it out. It hurt me to hear her cry to me as she explained she is frightened not knowing what to expect….

I’m scared for my friends and my family (I have a second cousin—who is pregnant, and her husband that live on the SOUTH side of Houston. My uncle just told me tonight that they contacted them to invite them to come stay with us, but they said they were going to stick it out too).

I don’t know, but when I’m close to my friends I can truly feel for them, especially when you know they are in fear. I call it my E.T. scenario. Like how Elliot and E.T. were linked in a sense that when one felt sick the other did, and when one got drunk the other felt it. Well, I know how like in times when my friends are having to give a big presentation in front of our class or like in Chapel and I know they are nervous, I get just as nervous as they do sitting there as I watch them because I feel for them in a sense.

I’m scared not knowing what my friends have to expect. None of us know what Rita could do….

I can honestly tell you I haven’t felt a strong desire to pray in over a year now, but all day today the feeling was almost overwhelming. It goes back to something I mentioned a few blogs ago about how while I might not believe in praying, I know my friends do, and I know in this time, they are in need of it, so though I haven’t brought myself to my knees yet, I think it is only a matter of time.

Though feeling so helpless, I can tell you one thought that is going through my head, and it is this…

I plan to request upon my friends at our gathering tomorrow night if we can either pray or at least take a moment to think about our friends and family who will be in the middle of Rita’s powers at the very moment we are about to eat dinner…

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

The Pictures We Have Painted…

It’s interesting to see how sometimes we have an overall view or feel for something and it ends up that isn’t how it is at all. Many times it just may be that we want it to be that way, when it really isn’t or it can be due to shear ignorance or lack of information.

I know you’re thinking what is the difference between ignorance and lack of information and while I suppose to an extent they are really similar, to me I feel as if a lack of information could be less of a person’s own fault in the sense that they weren’t given all the necessary pieces of the puzzle. Ignorance on the other hand might be that lack of investigation in an area. I think you’ll be able to distinguish between my differing more as I proceed…

So recently (being over the past 1 to 1.5 years, I suppose) I’ve begun to see that the true picture isn’t exactly as I’ve had it painted in my mind over the previous years of my life. There is a part of me that feels like I’ve reached this point in my life where I’m viewed as “old enough” to be told some things apparently, or like I’m an “adult” now apparently, so I’m apparently more open to adult topic discussions. And by that I’m not meaning let’s talk sex, I’m talking, let her know about all the “drama” in a sense. You know, the stuff “the kids don’t have to know about.”

Like family for instance. I suppose in a sense I’ve just always had this picture painted in my mind of what a “perfect” family I come from. Not just immediate, but extended. I mean we have our one or two folks that have gotten a divorce or the aunts and uncles that have a speeding ticket here and there and the relatives here and there that aren’t religious, and so on and so forth. Whatever the case, I felt as though I came from a “good” family background.

So like all of a sudden apparently when I turned some age that I was never told about was the “you are now old enough” age, I find out things I never knew growing up. So and so has been a druggie all their life. So and so was bad into alcohol. So and so was sexually abused growing up. So and so has an eating disorder. So on and so forth.

So now the picture that I had painted of my family is being rearranged in a sense. It’s like the paint is being chipped away—the paint in which I painted there mind you; and the “real” portrait beneath, in a sense, is being revealed.

I’m not saying what is found necessarily is better or worse than the original painting, but it’s just different. You begin to look at the portrait differently. You begin to question more, as well as begin to understand more (all at the same time, which is kind of funny).

But what’s even more intriguing is when this issue is brought more home per say. When the picture in which you had painted, that is beginning to be chipped away, is the picture for which you had painted of yourself.

We all think we know who we are. Many times we do know to a pretty decent extent, but when the parts that you thought you knew begin to be questioned, especially when the questioning is coming from none-other-than yourself, things get a little more intense—to the point of truly “hitting-home.”

In our own defense, many times the pictures for which we have painted are acting as just that, a defense. It is our defense mechanism for what we want everything to look like. This is especially pertinent to remember when considering the picture we have painted for our self. It is not uncommon for us to view our self in one manner in efforts to avoid the truth about our self for which we are not satisfied with. And whether that is healthy or not, that is for another blog another time…HA! What I want to point out is how hard it is to realize sometimes that the picture for which we have painted of our self might not be the true picture to the core; something else very well might lie beneath.

I’m now at the point of this blog where I would normally relate this blog to an example, such as how I have found this situation to have come about in my own life, but at this very moment I just decided that, though all along I planned to go into my example to wrap this blog up, I’m not going to. I think this blog has much more meaning if I leave it out there as is and let you think about it not detour from this route into a more narrow perspective of relating it specifically to my situation. And, as much as I’ve shared topics pertaining specifically to myself lately, I feel as though I want to get back on the route of my FAVORITE type of blogs to write, as well as to read; those in which they just make you think in a general sense about whatever way you want to interpret the topic, rather than this is about me.

Monday, September 19, 2005

It Takes a Lot...

I truly believe it takes a lot to get on my bad side. I've been blessed with a pretty high level of patience, in my opinion, as well as an ability to get along with most people. And while I'll never claim to "hate" an individual or even consider anyone to be my enemy, I have had occasions where I will denote an individual in my book as being "rather annoying." However, to get this notation, it takes a lot...

I was thinking while in the shower this evening that I can only think of two GATAs that I would consider annoying. And actually, only one of them do I choose to avoid having to spend a lot of time with, the other it only comes down to certain environments in which she annoys me...HA!

I say this being about 95% sure that neither of these ladies read my blog (that should set your mind at ease if you were thinking I get annoyed with you...HA!), but for two reasons: 1) it will help me to make my point that out of the MANY of GATAs I've known and most that I call "friend" as well as keep in contact with many, it truly is a limited amount of people that can "get to me," but also for 2) the fact that I KNOW I have blog readers out there that it will drive NUTZ not knowing which two GATAs I've referring too...HA HA HA! Sorry, can't give any names! ;) But I'll tell you this much, the one individual that I choose not to hangout with, she is the only GATA that got me so aggrevated with her that I cursed at her in the middle of the campus center one day and just totally walked off completely pissed off...HA! I remember Bethany S. was standing there with us, as well as someone else, but for the life of me I can't remember who the other GATA was...maybe Inwood...I don't remember...HA!

So, it takes a lot to get me annoyed with an individual, as I pride myself in being rather patient and understanding, but for the life of me, I can't get through a single class session with my Monday night professor without leaving totally turned off by this fella. While I refuse to give all the details of this man's annoyances, I'll share this much tonight, which is a BIG part of what really bothered me from our class last week and ended up making for a BIG juicy class discussion with him tonight....

So last week in class he didn't understand how to work one of the classroom pieces of technology. He was obviously getting frustrated with it. And while many students were trying to explain to him how to work it while we were sitting in our desks he was still confused. I think out of embaressment and frustration it led to his behaviors, but still....

He proceeded in the following manner...
He said, "Well why don't you guys get off your asses and show me how to work it instead of just saying shit!?! Why don't you just shut the f*ck up then if you aren't going to come up here and help!"

Okay, I could let the "ass" and even the "shit" fly; I realize I'm not at ACU anymore, and I get those in everyday friendly conversation at work's called welcome to the real world OUTSIDE of the ACU bubble, but the f-word I'm not a fan of (unless of course we are sitting in a sexually-oriented class). I can understand the man was frustrated and even probably embarressed as he couldn't figure out the machine, but I think a "professional" should be able to control himself, or at least his language, in a professional setting. And maybe I'm wrong, but I believe a professor, especially at a graduate level is working in a professional setting.

So that all went down last week....well tonight in class he was up to his usual behaviors and gestures (not cursing, just other things), and he annoyed some folks again, so some people decide they were going to speak up this week.

Well when his behaviors from the previous week were brought to attention, he became EXTREMELY defensive and tried play this card...get this...this is a hoot....

He said he did not view the words he used last week as "profanity." He claimed that while some people might consider them profanity, he doesn't. And then when I think he was thinking to himself that was a pretty stupid "card" to play he started saying this one (this one is just a good, trust me)....

He said, "Well I was fully aware of what I was saying last week. I was in complete control. I said what I said to test the class. It was to see how sensitive of a class you are. I wanted to know if anyone would be offended."

What the crap?!?! Are you kiddin' me?!?! This man seriously needs some help...

I don't know.....he just had me so annoyed tonight that I HAD to get this out...

But I can tell you this much, I already know people who have gone to speak to higher authorities on this man, and I can tell you I came really close tonight...we'll just see how next week goes...

Monday's Picture Blog!

[Give this picture it's best caption! Either come up with a unique/fun caption for this picture or tell what you think is going on in the picture! Tomorrow I'll pick the best response! LEAVE A COMMENT (anyone can leave a comment, you don't have to have a blog)! I don't care if you're someone I don't know, someone I do know, or someone I'm not suppose to know that reads my blog all the time (secretly of course...HA!) Have fun!] Posted by Picasa

Sunday, September 18, 2005

Hi Ho, Hi Ho, It's Off to Church I Did Go....

I got more than just procrastination towards my homework out of going to church this morning. I'll be honest and say I actually enjoyed the service. The preacher, brother Grady, made some really good points that I had to jot down! One point was a website he shared with us...HA! I HAD to write it down so I wouldn't forget to go check it out!

Now while I'm not one for pessimism and pride myself in my optimistic point of view, I couldn't help but find this website rather humorous, though pretty pessimistic at times! And in all honesty, a few of the "pictures" with sayings on them literally made me laugh out loud! HA!

The website is here, but you can see a sample of one of the "pictures" I loved from it just below:

Some of my other favorites you can go see for yourself on the website and they include:

And while some of these might make you laugh out loud, some of them, including some of the humorous ones, make you think, you know what, that's right if you think about it. I like thoughts like that. One picture in particular from that site that though it is written to be rather negative in it's demeanor, it actually makes a pretty good point in my opinion is the one titled "Underachievement."

While this picture and saying made me think, so did a thought shared by Grady later on in the sermon. I found this thought to be something interesting to think about, so I thought I'd share it with y'all:

Sometimes God calms the storm around His people. Sometimes He calms His people midst the storm.

I just thought that was really interesting.

Grady also ended his sermon by making a very cool point in my opinion. Thoughout his sermon the slides that went along with the lesson included backgrounds of storms. They were really pretty looking backgrounds, with pictures of big billowing clouds, with pretty coloring of light showing through at points in the clouds. But whatever the case, though the pictures were pretty to the eye, the mind was telling you that wasn't a storm you would want to be about to experience.

So it wasn't till the last bit of the sermon that he made reference to the background pictures from the slides. He said, "you probably have noticed the nice background pictures of storms throughout the slide presentation. But what you probably didn't know was that those were all pictures from Katrina. Isn't it amazing how something so appealing can be so devastating. How something so magnificent can have such deadly power." I honestly don't know if I should have quoted that, because I don't recall his EXACT words, but it was something to that extent. But the point he made was so interesting to me. No where in that auditorium I would bet was someone sitting throughout the sermon thinking he had gotten those slide background pictures from Katrina photos, but I thought that was a brilliant idea and a great way to tie something so current to making a reference to God as he did.

He made the point that God is one who can be viewed with such beauty and aww, but it is also important to remember His power.

I just liked his sermon...I appreciate someone who shares good thought provoking ideas as well as can make a smart visual aid to tie things together!

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

House is Back Underway....

So tonight the new season of one of my favorite television series kicked off, and it couldn't have been anymore entertaining!

I've found every episode of House to be so intellectual and intriguing! If you have never watched this show I highly recommend giving it a chance. You'll have to get past the EXTREME sarcasm of the main character, if you're one turned off by sarcasm. I personally find his extremely quick wit SOOO attractive! He is BRILLIANT in my opinion (frankness/rudeness and all).

One thing that I found tonight that was no different from last season was the fact that I have to have a notepad and pen close-by for any episode. I LOVE smart or "make-you-think" thoughts, and the writers of House come up with some of the best!

So, as my aged, yet faithful, blog readers have known in the past, I believe this second season of House will continue history and keep the inspired blogs coming! And for that I'm excited!

I'll end with two points I jotted down during tonight's episode:

"When a good person dies there should be an impact on the world..."


"If someone asked you to describe me to them, what would be the first thing you would say?"

Hmm....think about both. Interesting huh....

Let me know what you think....

Monday, September 12, 2005

Monday's Picture Blog (new instructions listed under the picture)!

[Give this picture it's best caption! Come up with a unique/fun caption for this picture and tomorrow I'll pick the best response! If you can't come up with a good caption, leave me a message anyways telling me which caption thus far you like the best (or better yet, come back around the evening time and judge from all the captions that had been left throughout the day)! Have fun!] Posted by Picasa

Friday, September 09, 2005

What's Most Important to You?

This is an exercise we did in my class last night. We actually did two exercises that I really loved, because they were both those kinds of exercises that are about self-exploration and self-discovery...I LOVE those things! Anyways, this one I really want to share because I agree with my professor that I think it is something we should all continually check up with ourself on. It is an exploring your values exercise, and contrary to what you may think, you values can and most likely will change up some, or even dramatically throughout your lifetime. Because of this, it is healthy to reevaluate where you stand from time to time.

So here is the exercise: Here is the list of 17 values that was listed on our handout and you need to pick your top 5 values and put them in order from 1 to 5 with 1 being the most important value to you.
  • LOYALTY: maintaining important connections and commitments
  • POWER: having authority and influence
  • INDEPENDENCE: having freedom of though and action
  • EDUCATION: continuing growth in knowledge and skills
  • RECOGNITION: receiving recognition for achievements
  • EMOTIONAL WELL-BEING: solving emotional problems and maintaining self-esteem
  • SPIRITUAL WELL-BEING: living according to my spiritual beliefs
  • PHYSICAL WELL-BEING: taking care of my body
  • SEXUAL FULFILLMENT: feeling good about myself sexually
  • QUALITY MARRIAGE OR RELATIONSHIP: having a marriage or relationship that is a source of love and fulfillment
  • LOVE: loving and being loved
  • SUCCESS AND ACHIEVEMENT: being able to do things really well
  • PLEASURE OR JOY: enjoying the joys and pleasures in my life
  • FAMILY: maintaining family traditions and background
  • PARENTHOOD: having and taking care of children as a source of fulfillment
  • AESTHETICS: having beauty in my surroundings
  • ACCEPTANCE: being accepted by people who are important to me

You obviously are not required to share your list with the rest of us, but feel free too, as I have listed my top 5 values in the comment section already. I find it is interesting to see what people hold as true values to themselves. It is our values that tend to guide our lives!

NOTE: I highly encourage you to make your list and rankings BEFORE going to the comment section to view other people's rankings. Though we don't always think so, we as humans can be influenced even when we think we stand firm in our beliefs.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

For the Love of One Another...

I write this with tear trails marking my cheeks...

I plead ignorance to the Katrina disaster. In all my shame I admit I haven't kept up with this situation. I fell into my guilt this weekend as I denied working a calling center for Katrina relief efforts with a dear friend on Sat. and Monday. Whatever the case I have not done my part, nor watched the coverage to bare the loss...

So tonight I watched the Oprah piece from today: The Katrina Catastrophe Part II...

I refuse to write the blogs about the government, about FEMA, about Bush, about blaming, or about the media. I refuse to say I understand. I even refuse to say I know the situation, because I don't, but what I do know is how blessed I am.

As I watched tearfully tonight, lying in a bed, and with my hair straigthened from my straigthening iron, with my clean pajamas on, under my covers to protect my body from the chill of the air conditioning, I cried with my remote in hand as I fast forwarded through commercials to see the next bit of lose so many people were experiencing.

Oh how each and every one of them would like to be able to put on their clean clothes and fast forward through this life to a time of a rebuilt life. Oh how they would like to have the task of protecting themselves from the air conditioning. Being on Oprah's show or not, how they'd like to be able to run THEIR brush through their hair, whether straigthened or curly.

I've been working with homeless for nearly three weeks now, so it wasn't the thought of being without a physical home that brought me to tears. It was the thought of losing their loved ones. Losing family and friend pictures. Losing the things that can't be replaced. I cried to see how complete strangers were taking one another under their wings. I cried to see the ones for which we as a society view as "famous" giving hugs to the less fortunate.

I don't know much, but I know something like this can only bring people closer than in the past.

I know I laid there after it was over, and I was in the complete dark and thought about how much I can't wait to see some of my best friends again and give them a hug. I can't wait for homecoming to be here and I get to see my friend Becca and give her a hug. I can't wait to see my friend Cheryl and give her a hug. I can't wait to joke around with my friends Janaye and Lindsey again. I can't wait to be arm in arm with my club sisters and sing songs that I probably won't even remember the words too. I just can't wait....

It's these thoughts that remind me just how blessed I really am....

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

I Can Tell You Where the Hell Abilene Is....

[NOTE: Anyone who has been to Abilene, Texas, might want to read this]

I just wanted to pass along an interesting blog entry I came across when doing the traditional checking one friends blog, clicking on another person's blog from that friend's blog, then clicking on the blog of someone that commented to that blog and clicking on a blog from that blog, etc.

Don't act like you have never done that before! ;)

So I came across this blog and when I read the gentleman's thoughts on the header of his blog I was like, "this is going to be my kind of a blog!" I was immediately excited, so I began scrolling down and one of the entries caught my eye; I think you'll see why when you go to it.

But after reading it I couldn't help but think, "Is a place's geographic make-up really what gives it it's meaning? Does the weather and the greenary (or lack there of) really distinguish whether a place is 'heaven' or 'hell?'"

I just think some places have SO much more to offer than their physical appearance, well people do to for that matter!

[Note: Some of you might know the author of this blog; as far as I can tell I don't think I do. I don't have anything against the fella, I just seem to disagree with this entry, and thought y'all might enjoy the read as well, because while I didn't agree with it, I still found it interesting to read.]

10 Characteristics of People Who are Mentally Healthy

This is the list that I mentioned in an earlier blog. While the class I got it from is my Perspectives of Mental Health class, which is focused on covering the mental disorders, we spent last class dedicating our time together going over the importance of knowing not only how to diagnose someone as mentally unhealthy, but also being able to depict an individual that is mentally healthy.

I truly enjoyed this content! I think this list of characterisitics is a list of things I find myself totally interested in in life and as a list of characteristics that I'm truly trying to possess. However, as I was thinking about the list, I came to the conclusion that I think the state of being mentally healthy is probably as much of a state that needs to be diagnosed from the outside looking in, as does a mentally unhealthy person's state of diagnosis. So, I'll share the list with you and let YOU be the judge...

  1. A positive outlook on life.
  2. A realistic set of expectations and approaches to life.
  3. Effective management of emotions.
  4. The ability to function well with others.
  5. The ability to draw strength from others without being overtly dependent upon them.
  6. Reasonable appetites.
  7. A spiritual nature.
  8. Effective coping skills.
  9. An honest self-regard and self-esteem.
  10. The ability to view the world honestly, accurately, and realistically.

[Donnelly, J.W., Eburne, N., & Kittleson, M. (2001). Mental health: Dimensions of self-esteem and emotional well-being. Boston: Allyn & Bacon.]

Granted, a person's spiritual nature may not be as easily recognizable from the outside in, but areas such as a person's management of emotions or how well a person functions with others are areas I like to think someone from the outside looking in, especially someone that knows you well, would be the best "judge," in a sense, on saying whether you meet that characteristic or not. Because let me tell you, I know some people that would immediately tell you they function well with others, but I can go get those "others" and let you hear their side of the story...HA!

Also, something I want to point out is about the spiritual nature part. I love spirituality (believe it or not!) And for those that might be surprised by my saying that, you might one of the ones that so easily confuses spirituality with religiousity (I used to always just consider them one in the same, too!)

It was pointed out in our handout from this lesson in class that a spiritual nature comes from people who have a sense of purpose in being and have a notion that they belong somewhere in their own big picture of the universe. Individuals who are mentally healthy believe there is a purpose to life and they feel they have a part to play in that purpose. Granted, a person's religious background can guide his/her spirituality, and that is VERY common; however, I think it is important to remember that one is not necessary for the other.

Gosh, this is fun/good stuff!

Blessings, friends!

First Day of the Work Week Picture Blog!

[Give this picture it's best caption! Either come up with a unique/fun caption for this picture or tell what you think is going on in the picture! Tomorrow I'll pick the best response! LEAVE A COMMENT (anyone can leave a comment, you don't have to have a blog)! I don't care if you're someone I don't know, someone I do know, or someone I'm not suppose to know that reads my blog all the time (secretly of course...HA!) Have fun!] Posted by Picasa

Saturday, September 03, 2005

Friends Are So Good...

Not only do I have my wonderful network of familiar blog signatures (AKA my friends) that have supported me so well through their comments to my blogs, but I received an email yesterday from a fellow GATA sister that I haven't seen or talked to in a quite a while.

I had emailed her a short email Tuesday night to tell her I had thought about calling her all weekend, but didn't get to doing that, but that I was wondering how she was doing. Well, as in most all emails that we send to people that we haven't "caught-up" with in a long time, I also put a short paragraph at the end of the email giving her an idea of what I'd been up to lately. Well, it just so happens that I wrote that email Tuesday night (the night of my "low" day). So I can't remember exactly what I said in it, but I mentioned that I was working in the homeless shelters and how the experience had already brought me to tears because of discouragement issues and confusion and ignorance. Well, she wrote me back an email that just made my day yesterday! This is a portion of it:

I do not think that you are wrong for questioning your abilities to be a therapist, everyone questions their abilities to do great things, but I think that you are wrong for thinking that you would not be a phenomenal therapist. I think that you are being pushed to the limits and in a completely new environment that you have never fully experienced, which of course would make anyone question their abilities to do anything. BUT, when you were born did you know how to walk, or did you know how to talk, living in this world is a completely new experience! I know that I did not know how to do either, but that did not keep me from trying to learn, heck sometimes I still am so clumsy. The fact that you feel so ignorant about things only leaves you vulnerable to everything around you, which could be a good or a bad thing. From my perspective Kim, I think that that is a good thing for you. I think because you were created the way you were, the situation will make you more determined than ever to learn everything that you don't know. Also, if you knew everything already then you would be one of those meanies that sits behind a desk and tells people what do to, one day I hope to be one of those meanies, but in the meantime I just have run around like a chicken with my head cut off trying to figure out what in the world I need to learn next so that my boss and everyone around me does not think that I am just a BIG loser. Kim, don't be discouraged, just take everything in stride, just know that all the things that you feel so ignorant about will help you out in the future. In time you will come to discover and learn more about the things that you feel you don't know. In the end you will know so much because you were so determined to change the situation, and that my dear is the way that you will be able to help your patients. They will know, as I know, that you are not just another face in the crowd of their lives, but a caring and wonderful individual that is wants to be more than just their doctor. You want to be their friend. Trust me, your ignorance will pay off!

She's a great friend, not to mention a smart kid! ;)

Thanks, friends!

Thursday, September 01, 2005

This Is Kind of Disturbing...

[NOTE: if you have already read this post previously to this "note" being here, the author would appreciate you visiting the comments section of the post and seeing the clarifications that the auther has provided there. Thank you!]

Foreshadowing? Let's hope not...

Okay, this morning on my 30 minute drive to Fort Worth at 7 AM I found myself reflecting on a client interaction from the day before that I had done a lot of reflecting on yesterday as well. But it was this morning that the pieces of the puzzle kind of went together. I had known there was SOMETHING about our interaction from the day before that had me trying to figure out what seemed so familiar or something about it. So this morning it hit me! Even with it being so freakin' early...HA!

However, I have to stop at this point and give two "read at your own risks beyond this point" messages. The risks you take by reading beyond this point are:
1) if you haven't seen the movie Patch Adams, and you don't want the movie ruined for you, don't read further, and...
2) if morbidity (sp?) talk disturbs you, you might not want to read on either...


Okay, so the light-bulb above my head came on this morning and I was like, "I GOT IT!" I knew what my interaction with that client on Wed. reminded me of! Okay, you know in the movie Patch Adams the patient that ends up killing Patch's girlfriend? HIM! And in all honesty, it freaked the crap out of me driving to the internship this morning thinking about it. Yes, I know at this point you are thinking, whatever, but honestly, you know the body mannerisms of that man in the movie and his behaviors and totally how he responded to Patch and his woman (who's name has left me...i'm SOOO out of it right now....HA!) whenever the would talk to him and ask him things....that was SOOOO my client! He gave me looks like the way that patient in the movie would look at them, and he would act all nice and like he had it all together, and it seems to really like me (not like in a romantic sense, but in a he thinks we are good buds sense) and after I did a 1.5 hour assessment with him when we were parting he so wanted to hug me. But I was able to get out of that...HA! ;)

A part of me is now worried about my next interactions with him (luckily I wasn't at the shelter today where I see him, nor will i be there tomorrow). I guess if I end up at the shelter some day and he is playing a piano that randomly appears there and he takes my coat and asks me to come in, I'll freak out!

So, this is going to come out really weird sounding, and many of you might be like, she is hoenstly one of the strangest people I know, but I have been wanting to put this in my blog the last few days and have't done it, but here goes...

I have had this weird feeling for probably the past week that I could literally get killed this semester. Like I honestly wouldn't be surprised if I was to get killed this semester while interning at the shelters. HA! Well i suppose it isn't funny, but the thought has run through my mind a lot lately. Not to mention how an article i had to read for my field class I had tonight talked about safety in social work settings and mentioned how working in a homeless shelter is one of the most dangerous settings. No lie, my friends!

And you want to know probably the sickest part of this all...LOL...the fact that I wanted to put this in my blog so if I DID end up dead, y'all could be like, "she was right! Her intuition was right!" I have this thing about loving to be right and I think it would be so cool if I ended up calling it. I suppose you shouldn't say that about death, but you know what i mean! HA!

So on a brighter note, I started out this internship scared to death about this situation and my concerns with my size and my placement population, but after this week I can honestly say I'm feeling a lot better about things, I suppose you could say I'm feeling only scared to retirement now! ;)