Friday, December 28, 2007

They're Here!

Houseparty has arrived.

We've got amazing students! Today we all went ice skating and sightseeing in the Soo...and I met some countrymen- fellow Yinchuanese!

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


With our powers combined, we are your Cedar office!

Babies do crazy things to people. Right now, I'm really glad I don't have one - I can sleep all night long tonight.


But they are adorable. No doubt about it. I held a week-old for half an hour tonight. What an amazing gift.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Great Birthday

Officially 24 now - and smiles due to a few good gifts! Like this 'Note to Self' pad:

Because of Dan and Kelly's great gift, I have now found another sweet website - Knockknock is my kinda business. In perusing their Philosophy section, these folks value utility, humor, beauty, and craft.

The fact that they use the word contextlessness scores points in my book as well. I don't think I've ever seen that word before.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Crazy races

I don't have strong thoughts about the issues yet- because I still need to read up on how candidates are responding to them, but in my meandering thoughts, according to Pick Your Candidate here's where they stand by issue in my mind. Weird to see like that..

24 Kucinich
18 Gravel
16 Obama
16 Edwards
15 Richardson
14 Clinton
12 Dodd
11 Biden
3 Paul
-1 McCain
-6 Brownback
-10 Cox
-11 T. Thompson
-12 Huckabee
-13 Giuliani
-20 Tancredo
-21 Romney
-21 Hunter

Thanks Lance for the link..

Tuesday, December 18, 2007


Farewell, originally uploaded by sarah_laughingguts.

In my spare evenings, particularly lately, I've taken to hunting for schools and learning all over again what the teaching situation is like in China.

Seems like it's gotten more confusing in recent years. I've pored through sites a lot since 2003, searching for possibilities, then stopped when I was in China the summer of '06. So much has changed! Even more, it seems, anyone and everyone who wants to travel to East Asia is seeking out teaching jobs. That puts me on my guard. I don't want to work alongside one of those people that doesn't care about education and is just looking to get as much as they can out of the setup.

It bothers me.

So I'm looking for a dream job. I know that. It's possible, isn't it, though, to make it come true? Of course there will be things (let's face it, a lot of things, and probably most things) that I won't expect and that won't go as I wish they would. I know enough about China and the way things usually work to know that.

But I still hope. Once I get in that classroom (well, in my city of work, really,) I can begin building relationships, which is where I really want to be.

Oh well. I guess every place has its issues. Just another thing to know...

Saturday, December 15, 2007

A day in the life

With about 1/16 of a gallon left in our milk jug, I had a glass that was bad a few weeks ago. For some lack of reasoning, I put the jug back in the fridge to deal with it later.

A few days later, roommate Catie took the jug out, we talked about how we needed to throw the milk away, and she left the jug on the counter, again with some lack of reasoning.

A few days after that, I realized the jug was on the counter and beginning to bloat. I had a reason to leave it, though. Catie was the one who had put it out, and besides, wouldn't it be kinda cool both to see her reaction when she notices or even it the milk jug blew? So I left it.

Several days after that, Catie noticed.

She said, "Didn't we get that out like a week ago!? Ew. We need to get rid of it," and left it again.

Tonight, I walked into the apartment and smelled a truly horrid reek. I sniffed all over the apartment, only discovering that the smell seemed to be worse in the kitchen. Maybe it was our fridge? I'd been thinking we needed to clean out the fridge again... so I just sprayed the whole place with vanilla air freshener. It helped.

Not enough, though. And I heard this weird dripping sound. Figuring it was the sink, I didn't think much further of it. But I did call Catie to ask her to use her brain when she got home to maybe find out what the smell was. Something like rotten eggs or spoiled milk, I told her.

She remembered the milk jug. That's where the drip was coming from, making a pool on the floor- which explains why the spray didn't work well enough.


So here I sit with candle lit. And milk jug on the deck in the snow.

Maybe we're not as far away from college as we thought.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

cross-country mania!

Today, I chilled my x-country skis and hit the new trail across the road - saw hunter Eric when I was about 10 feet away from him (or closer) and later ran into the whole Miller clan - Gabe, Eli, Jonah, Beckah, Rod, and Gayle about to hit the trail. I followed only two sets of ski tracks, a set of boots, and a snowmobile; now that trail is 3x more x-countryified!
Here are some of my latest from the awesome winter weather:

Some swirling in the sand

The icy sea of reeds

Just a little picture of Taylor Lodge, if you catch the drift...

And a toy truck just for kicks.

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Just about now

It sure would be nice to go dancing. Swing, maybe. Yeah.

Been thinking about seeing what's going on up in the Soo- it takes about an hour to get there, though. Now that it's winter, we've got awesome (snowy) weather. A little unpredictable sometimes.

I'm looking forward, though. To houseparty, when we've got international students from awesome places like China. And summer crew come back. It'll be like having a social life for 5 days. And to think, I used to wonder what houseparty was like up here, even fantasized a few years ago about maybe going to Cedar Campus for houseparty just after Christmas. Oh yeah. Forgot that memory.

Well here I am, and I've been recruiting crew, readying the website for next year, sorting pictures, and looking forward to photographer duties December 26-January 2.

I'm all smiles about that.

That, and all the books that just came in for me on interlibrary loan :-)

Monday, December 03, 2007


It's upon us!

Over a foot of snow this weekend.

Lots of drifting. Not all survived.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Just in case

If you were wondering which wishlist you were looking for on Amazon was mine, look no further than this link, the answer to your question: What Would Sarah Want?

I myself have even gone to remember...

Sunday, November 25, 2007

sarah with our goofy kids

My Monday night pals are something I'm thankful for this holiday. One of many things, but perhaps the cutest.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thursday, September 06, 2007

What I did on my summer vacation...

August 30~Thursday - drive Vanesa and Aron to Ann Arbor friends, and say goodbye to Cedar summer

Friday - lunch with old friend Maribeth in Marion, drive to Pleasant Vineyard and blessed sleep at the Bennett home

Saturday - PVM visit and hugs, bowling with Lance and Kat, chili dinner at PVM, introduction to "The Office" British version (Finally, I know...)

Sunday - visit Cobblestone, then off to Cincinnati dinner and fireworks with Kat and Lance, joined by Matt and a surprise, Will! Parking at Newport poses a huge obstacle for returning, and we end up sitting with Louie in traffic for a couple hours of good conversation

Monday - After a partial night of sleep, Lance brings me my cellphone and I'm off to Michigan again after another visit in Marion with Sarah and Amy from Cedar

Tuesday - Hangin' with mama, dinner with the grandparents and teaching computers

Wednesday - Hangin' with mama, going shopping, watching the new flick about Jane Austen (very good)

September 6~Thursday - Fly to Portland, Oregon for a weekend with Jon, Annalyn, Caleb, Erica, and whomever else shows up randomly.

Saturday - Hangin' with Erica, checkin' out the local scene

Tuesday - Fly back to Chicago and see who there is to see there

Friday - show up for work at Cedar Campus!

Friday, June 08, 2007

For Amber


Only...3 months since the last post here! Yeah, Amber, sorry about that. I have been posting to since in China I had a lot of problems with blogger working.

It's Saturday here, which usually means a wild time with turnover in the morning, a massive leftover lunch (all the goodies from the week are served one second time for pick-and-choose, and fabulous icecream sundae time), and then registration begins for the next week of campers.

Today I had a little break, listened to some of Ram Sridharan's messages on my deck in the sun, and wrote a bit. It was good. Especially after last night's extended nap. I had planned on sleeping about an hour then joining some cribbage-playing with a summer crewmember who left today then hanging out with the folks camping out at Sandy Cove... but instead I slept for 12 hours...

Talk about tired. Getting better. I'm starting to make some changes so as not to be so burdened by the insurmountable work load- all of which is impossible to do, and neither am I responsible for it all. It's not too different from some of the things that used to happen at PVM, but the structure is more intricate here (more departments) and my position is quite a bit different as well.

Lessons, lessons, every day new ones. I happen to be the liaison for the fun committee. That's fun.

Alright, that's all for now. Maybe I'll make the next update in less than three months.

Or perhaps just put a link to xanga

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

the good, the bad, the pretty much insane...

the good part is my fingernails are still intact. I'm trying to learn to live life with unbit nails. Still have to perfect the whole "keep 'em" part. Once they get longish, it gets hard to type, and when I have a freak-out moment, I bite away, just like the olden days (i.e. a year ago).

the bad part? I'm having an incredibly immature week. The role of college student is once again upon my shoulders, with the writing of a paper (really, just revising 10 already existent pages and hopefully adding a few to the mix) which is taking an inordinately long amount of time, considering it's the only thing I need to do up here in the mount. I have no good excuses. Unless it is perhaps that I am afraid to finish this stage.

another good part is there are a few dear ones who still remember and care for Sarah here at Central. This has been like balm to the wounds of the still-recovering southern Michigander... Ilene, my gracious host who thinks more highly of me than I do and makes me wonder if she really sees me. She judges my faults a lot more gracefully than I do, and is always reminding me of good things... Colleen, my would-be host and crazy friend who is also wrestling with death in-your-face is one whose company I really miss when away, as she is candid about so many things and appreciative and thoughtful and going to Ghana this fall... Ashley, my English classmate who helped me survive first semester at Central and whose sparkle has always made me glad for her friendship and is moving to Pittsburg... Marina, the Greek from Cyprus, my cultural friend who is crazy about Che, political activism, and beautiful sights, not to mention coffee... and of course the InterVarsity-ers like Lisa who comes running at me full-speed as if it had been years since we'd last parted.

another good part is I've been thinking again of China... weighing my desires and why I ache to be back, if I could really be a decent teacher to those kids who have so much to learn (and teach me too)... honestly I don't know why more young people don't go over there- what an amazing opportunity. I mean really, who doesn't want to see one of the great wonders of the world which can reportedly be seen from outer space!? It's exciting to be able to think of and begin to feel again that I may have the competence for it.

another good part is you're reading ramblings of a caffeinated 23-year old written at 4AM. this shows a quirkiness in you, and I hope you weigh the good parts much more heavily than the bad. Yes, the bad, which is that paper I'm putting off again. But no worries, I have plans to finish it by morn. It is going to be incredibly crappy. But shall I share with you the stats on it?

The paper is 40% of my total grade for that class. I currently have an A in it (I haven't gotten a straight A in two full years at Central, so this is pretty incredible. I think we have to thank the very humane professor on this one, though, because my devotion to the class has been one of loathing, not love) and the final version of the paper is worth 70% of the end paper grade. I have a B going into this. Most of my honest to goodness hard work of this week has been in figuring what my current grade is and the range of possibilities once this paper is done. I should have been a statician (or is it statistician?) I suppose.

If you dear reader have followed the windings of these thoughts, you're more like me than you probably should be.


Monday, February 19, 2007

Something ... happy

Today, I continued in my endeavor to clear the closet of unnecessaries, such as old records, bills, firecrackers, gun barrels, photography developing equipment, crazy 80s clothes, baby blankets, teddybears, a couple projectors, tools, model rockets, and of course old Sturgensian yearbooks from the mid70s and Toledo yearbooks too.

This is my life at present, while listening to the best of NPR...

But I have also come across a few things I'm glad for- an odd locket, a kazoo, a catlady sweater, and this:

I miss that goofy guy.

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Well what a surprise...

What's that you say? You say today is ... Saturday?
Goodbye! I'm going out to play! (good ole Shel Silverstein and Fine Arts Festival recitations...)

I'm glad it's not Saturday. It's been Saturday for about a month in my head here. No job, no schedule except those of the friends I'm with (which has been Mount Pleasant, MI; Huntington, Ft. Wayne, IN; Oxford and Camden, OH; Chicago, IL; Franklin, TN; Mayfield, Louisville, Almo, KY; St. Louis, MO...) and a few thousand memories and miles on the car to show for it.

Rest in the presence of friends has been good. Trying to figure out how to rest well has been a good challenge. Can I do it on Ohio Court? Not very well, it seems. So many memories, so much work. But then again, grief is work. And trying to get out of that is not what I want to do.

So where to go? I can't just traipse about the countryside, dropping in on friends and family indefinitely, taking them up on their offers of hospitality (which are much appreciated, thank you!)- the bills for school will start coming in soon, and I will have to start paying them!

It just so happens that God has shown a direction yet again...more on that later, though, it's time for bed!

Tuesday, January 09, 2007


Christmas picture with mom, goodbye to my Chinese teachers, and a blurry shot from the Urbana conference in St. Louis

And I just got a youtube account! Here is an old video, a new one, and an older one...

The view from Emei Shan this past fall, a mountain I climbed...

Almost half of my summer team, talking at Urbana, a conference in St. Louis

My 22nd birthday was one of the first times I used the camera feature- and it looks like those old dubbed movies, since the words don't exactly match the lips! Uncle Jim and MaryAnn were good little actors :-)