This Is It.

Heyyyyyy friend! It’s been, let’s see now, well, umm, it’s been a while hasn’t it? Nearly five months?! Sheesh, my bad… So how ya been?

Summarizing the last five months could be tricky, lets see, I did keep cooking a bit, I know the posts dropped off at “E” but I made chicken broccoli noodle thing (F), pretzel buns with cream cheese icing dip (G), and Sloppy Joe Mac & Cheese (H) and maybe some other stuff but I don’t remember. I’m going to try and get back into weekly cooking, still ironing out my back-to-school schedule though.

But the summer was great! Mostly worked, but did get to take a trip to BC with mah boyfriend Ryan to visit with family and adventure down there for a bit! If you’d like to see some of what we did I did put together a video shortly after the trip

And since then school has started up again! Well for me, Ryan’s a fancy graduate with a grown-up job and everything (he’s my inspiration for what to be like next year, you see!). I am in my last year of school. It’s weird. I remember my last year of high school, it was exciting and incredibly nerve-racking all at once. There’s the excitement of moving on but also the emptiness of what is going to happen next, it feels like everything is so unknown. I’m getting feeling like that again now. This is my fourth year in university, I have the year mapped out until April when I wear the gown and funny cap and get handed a piece of paper and then I have absolutely no idea and when I start to think about that, it terrifies me. I feel so unprepared and inadequate.

Now I’m not saying that school has let me down and not taught me what I needed, I hope it has, but I am not confident that I’ll find a job, I’m not confident there will be a job, I worry I’ll be working 34.5 hours a week in a minimum wage job forever because why would someone chose me over someone else? I realize my instinct here is to say, “I wouldn’t.” and that makes me sad. Why wouldn’t I chose me? What’s wrong with me?

The other day my alarm went off and I opened my eyes after a night of tossing and turning. I couldn’t have gotten more than two hours “sleep” all night – the start of a terrible day, no? But a thought popped into my head. My boyfriend (who is a very smart man) has three things he tries to do (or would it be, be? Grammar… :P), Be optimistic, be patient, and no complaining. So I turned off that alarm and I took a breath and I decided, this is my day. No one can ruin it but me, and I say it’s my day and it’ll be just fine. And you know what, it was. It was very nearly a pretty good day actually.

So this is my year. I’ll try and blog bits and pieces of it but I know already it’ll be busy as heck so I don’t know how often I’ll pop in. I wrote out a list of all my assignments and due dates and oooh baby, this’ll be fun! But it’s my year, it’s going to happen. There will be no repeats of grade 12’s downward spiral to capital “B” Bad Times, these are sure gonna be some capital “B” Busy Times, but capital “G” Good Times too. We got dis, got a team of great folks to support and be supported by and we’re gonna do some cool stuff this year 🙂

– B

PS – I went exploring in the woods behind my university the other day. That was fun.

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Mayday, Carpool Down!

I commute to school. Now commuting has benefits, I get to have a forty minutes adjustments period to allow my mind to slowly realize it’s awake and needing to function before actually being in class. I can study in the car. I can socialize with my friends. However, there are some downfalls when it comes to carpooling. If the driver is down, chances are the carpool is too, and if you don’t go to school in the same city, other modes of transport aren’t really an option.

Carpoolers rely as much on each other as they do on their vehicles. By saving the environment one less car at a time, they strengthen their bond of trust that they have each others’ backs, that they’ll get to school on time for their classes.

Turns out I have an unplanned day off tomorrow. Good thing I already brought home my textbooks to study for my midterm on Friday.

Those Acting Things

Today in acting class we did those acting class things. We acted out candles melting, dolphins stuck in nets, swimming through marshmallows. I’m not very good at doing things that make me feel like a fool when there’s not a clear reason, but it is easier when you’re in a room full of people also doing it. We were doing it because we were focusing on movement and acting actions. How would you act differently when acting walking through a field of grass verses walking through a field of corn? You change how you move your legs, you involve your arms, you’re using your hands to push corn out of the way… Suddenly things are different that you may not have been entirely concious of before.

It was kinda weird, but interesting! =D

(Also I got 100% on my autodrama, yayy!)
-B

The Actor In Me

And now for your weekly The-Actor-In-Me update!

Today was a drama filled day (pun completely and utterly meant). The afternoon was our memory test for the play that I’m in. Now having only ever been in a drama club, we never had a memory test before we started blocking, we always were blocking as we memorized. I see benefits to both for sure, but this being a new experience I was a little nervous. I may have definitely sacrificed my midterm grade in another class focusing on memorizing scripts instead of studying enough but I think I can pull the grade back up in the rest of the term.

So we did the memory test. I think I did pretty well, I definitely need to polish it a lot more, but I have most of it down pretty well. After the memory test we got into blocking. In past plays I’ve been in the director has always just told us where they want us to be, what motions they want us to do, how they want us to stand. In this play we have much more creative licsense. I’m feeling a bit like a bird who grew up locked in a cage and now isn’t sure how to leave the cage even though the door is open. I get to have a major say in how my character acts! I get to choose (to then be director-approved of course) how my character is moving and behaving. It’s a creative freedom I’ve never had so I’m a little shy in acting on it… I think I’ll be able to get bolder as I get used to the idea. It’s gonna be a really fun play though, in blocking today I was loudly and rather shrilly yelling/talking/something right in someones face. Like literally inches from face so that was rather new, kinda fun!

Then this evening in my actual acting class we performed our autodramas. We had to write the five minute autodramas ourselves (of course, hense the auto-) and then perform them for the class using whatever props and stuff we needed. Mine was about how the song “Do You Hear What I Hear?” has effected my public speaking/performance abilities. I like to think it was a bit amusing… I may make a video of it in the semi-near future as I haven’t made a video in over a month and I already have it memorized. We’ll see. Maybe I’ll wait til I get my mark back ;D

It was really fun to see everyone else’s autodramas too though, some people were super personal about heavier stuff and some people got more into light-hearted fun stuff, but everyone’s was super good! I like this class.

Talk to you tomorrow!
-B

A Visit!?!

Today my brother and I got to go see my mum!! When she wrnt in we were told we wouldn’t be able to see her until she got home, she was only allowed two visitors to minimize any contact with germs as she’s on high immune-supresents as her body gets used to having a new organ in it. Without the immune-suppresents her body would attack the new kidney as a virus or invader and destroy it. So the immune-suppresents are a good thing, just not for my brother and I. My dad was obviously one of the apporved visitors, and the other was my sister who’s out of school and took the week off work.

So I had resigned myself to not seeing mum until she comes home (which could actually be as soon as Monday now!! exciting!) but then today I was texting her (gotta love technology) and she said, “The nurse said you can come visit if you want to” and I was like what, like now, okay I’ll come now!! So my sister came and picked up my brother and I and off we went!

Mum’s doing well, pretty tired and sore, kinda hard sleeping in hosptial beds and soreness is a normal post-surgery ailment, but she’s recoving. In fact, today the doctor told her her phosphates were low and she should eat some chocolate! She hasn’t been able to eat chocolate for seven or eight years now because her phosphates were always too high!! So dad got her a selection of things and she nibbled away at them guilt-free =)

Then this evening after I’d come home, my dad posted on facebook that my mum’s “blood clearance levels are now officially NORMAL! That means that [her] new kidney [(from my uncle)] is already cleaning her blood to such a degree that she’s getting the very same blood-test results that someone with a pair of healthy kidneys would get! Her nurse just exclaimed that she has never seen anyone reach NORMAL so quickly after a transplant! Thank you Lord!” So YAYYYY that’s exciting!! =) There’s still a ways to go with recovery but so far everythings good and God willing it will continue this way =)

Thanks for all the thoughts and prayers, they’re very appreciated! Talk to you all tomorrow!
-B

A Pintrest Girl

So Saturday I finished work and was waiting for my ride and headed into a shoe store to see if I could find new work shoes (spoiler: didn’t.). The girl working there looks up to greet me and pauses and asks, “Are those called milkmaid braids?”. I kinda shrug and say “I guess so.” To which she replies, I’ve never actually seen someone wear their hair like that, I mean off of Pintrest.”

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I have leveled up: I am now A Pintrest Girl.

Now the day before, Friday, I was at Rona with my parents getting bored while they tried to choose a new light fixture for the kitchen so I went to look at paintchips for the heck of it. Paintchips are free and I remembered seeing on Pintrest once, a cool thing you could do with them for wedding decorating but I coulnd’t remember exactly what is was… possibly name place cards. So I chose my favourite six shade cards: a red, an orange, a yellow, a green, a blue, and a purple. When I showed them to my mum she just said, “Yup, those look like you.” So I suppose I chose well!

I was googling trying to find the thing I’d seen on pintrest and came across this picture

At the time I just scrolled past it, it wasn’t what I was looking for, but Saturerday I decided I wanted to try and make a version of it.

I didn’t look up instructions, I didn’t even look up the picture again until now, I just free styled it (not normal for me, I’m usually very meticulous about following ALL and ONLY directions), but now, here goes, how I made my own version of a paintchip mobile over Saturday and Sunday:

First of all, the supplies I used!

First of all, the supplies I used!

For this I used a ruler, pen, three wooden dowels (or one for every two paintchip colours), six paintchip cards (or as many as you like, just keep the number even), a circular object to trace (needs to fit between the white strips on the paintchips), glue stick, needle and thread, scissors, and (discovered later, thus not pictured) twine.

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I started by drawing in the white lines between each shade on the back. I like to always draw on the back of whatever I’m using because then if I don’t cut “in the lines” quite right its not as noticeable!

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Next I traced two circles per colour. I wanted to keep the whole colour name on one of the circles so I made sure to fit that in by keeping my first circle as tightly in the corner with the name as possible.

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And then just start cutting… (this does get a little tedious, maybe find some good music, a podcast, or a show/movie that you can have on without needing to watch too closely)

 

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“Pro”-tip: It might be useful to initial the non-named colours because once they’re cut out some shade start to look veeeeeeerry similar…

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Aaaaaaand yeah now you just kinda keep tracing and cutting…

 

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All done? Yay! Now it’s time to choose your colour pattern! (They’re in twos for a front and a back side)

 

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Maybe do a round or two to the right for the second circles?

Maybe a little more random?

Perhaps a little more random…?

I chose to simply reverse each colour shade for the back: front – dark-light, back – light-dark.

 

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Now, all your paired up little fronts and backs, glue them together!

 

Line them up as best as you can while gluing…

Line them up as best as you can while gluing…

…but obviously they won't be perfect. If you want you can trim the white off later.

…but obviously they won’t be perfect. If you want you can trim the white off later.

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All glued, hurrah! Almost time for the most dangerous part, needles!

 

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Alright, time for those dowels and the twine. (You need one dowel for every two paintchip colours so you have one colour on each end)

 

I expect a gluegun would do this just as well, if not better, but I don’t own one sooooooo…

First, tie two of the dowels together.

First, tie two of the dowels together.

Start figure-eight wrapping (but go a little thicker on one side, one wrap, two wraps, one, two)

Start figure-eight wrapping (but go a little thicker on one side, one wrap, two wraps, one, two)

Add in the third dowel and keep figure-eighting

Add in the third dowel and keep figure-eight wrapping

Once you feel it's securly wrapped knot it at the top, leaving enough string to hang it with.

Once you feel it’s securly wrapped knot it at the top, leaving enough string to hang it with.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And now, the dangerous part begins…

Thread your needle.

Thread your needle.

Shazzam, first try!

Shazzam, first try!

 

 

 

 

 

 

“Fun Fact” prior to this I would get very paranoid when using sewing needles because I was worried somehow I’d bump something or my hand would go wacko and I’d stab myself in the eye with the needle. Soooooo yup. Didn’t feel worried this time though so I guess I’m maturing!

And start sewing!

And now the dangerous part begins, start sewing! (be sure to leave extra at the top to attach to the dowel later!)

 

I went through the top of each chip twice to loop and secure it

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And then through the bottom to keep the chips from flying everywhere!

Keep threading until you have a strong of alllll your colours for that particular string...

When you’ve got all of them on, go twice through the bottom one and then knot it. Cut off any leftover thread.

Through a series of knots and wraps and knots attach your thread of chips to one of the dowel ends.

Through a series of knots and wraps and knots attach your thread of chips to one of the dowel ends.

And do it again.

And do it again.

And again...

And again…

Aaand again

Aaand again

And agaaaaiinnn

And agaaaaiinnn

Last one!

Last one!

LOOK AT IT!

LOOK AT IT!

HANG YOUR CREATION WITH PRIDE AND JOY!

HANG YOUR CREATION WITH PRIDE AND JOY!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So yeah, now you’re done and you have a paintchip mobile. Congrats, that’s pretty cool.

-B

Me: Depression

I’ve probably said stuff like this before but earlier this year when I decided wasn’t going back to the university program I was in, I began to feel really excited for my future, like I just knew good stuff was gonna happen and it was coming and that’s a big deal.

Why is that a big deal? Well in the latter half of grade twelve and until after the new year after graduation I went through a period of what I can only call depression. I’m loathe to call it that because I know the connotations and the mentalities often paired with mental illness. I also know what I suffered was very light depression compared to what many people have to go through and for that I am grateful, but when you’re in it, when you’re in it, it does not feel “light”.

I don’t know what caused me to spiral down into where I landed part way through grade twelve but I suspect it was the fact that this was a last year and big changes were coming and I had no clue, literally no clue what I wanted to do. I am a person who craves structure (and with that often comes a need for control) and not knowing what was going to happen FOR THE REST OF MY LIFE freaked me out and as I went through the year still not knowing what I was doing and having nothing I could dig up peak my interest, I allowed myself to shut down.

Shut down? Well, often when emotions intimate me, I’ve allowed my mind to get into the habit of shutting them down. I push the problem out of the way and ignore it. This creates indifference (can’t see it, don’t need to bother with it. It’s no longer there), and then if it’s something important, when the deadline arrives, this method of coping results in a panic and if it’s bad enough, a full-fledged anxiety attack. I’ve only ever had three anxiety attacks that I can think of and I NEVER want to go through that again. The only way I can explain it is something explodes. The emotions that have been shut down and blocked out suddenly… pop. and everything explodes. Sound is extreme, light is extreme, people can’t talk-shouldn’t talk, there’s just sound and crying and panic and breathing, breathing is really loud and hard to do, and nothing makes sense and my mind stops registering anything and the worst thing you can EVER do if this is happening is ask me “what’s wrong?” I don’t know, that’s part of the problem, I just don’t know what’s going on. Something has become the last drop in the emotional pool to knock down the wall and all the hidden emotions are coming out.

That was a sidenote, sorry. (But seriously, the best thing you can do for someone having an anxiety attack, at least one like that, is just sit down and wait it out. Be there. Don’t talk, just be there. When they’re ready, they’ll talk. Don’t ask, don’t probe. Wait, and then listen. Once they’re done, think before you speak, if you are a person of faith, then you pray what God wants you to say then and there, because if that person just opened up to you that way they’re being extremely vulnerable and they’re are going to remember what you say and if you begin telling them what they’re feeling is wrong in any way, you’ve lost and they’re going to shut back down and think twice before opening up to you again. Be there and CARE)

Oh look, another sidenote. On a lighter note, depression… erm, uhh, nevermind.
So that year was hard because I shut down emotions and told next to no one what I was going through because I really didn’t understand it myself so how could I explain it to them and ask them to help me? To me I simply felt hopeless and indifferent all the freakin time and let me tell you, that is a crap way to live your life.
(In hindsight, just tell an adult you trust, they will be able to help. I mean I don’t know that from experience but I can imagine that’s a lot easier then suffering through it alone. At least then someone else knows and you don’t have to fake happy-and-normal with everyone)

I think what also allowed me to get so far down the spiral was that I stopped doing daily devotions and I stopped really pressing into God. I’ve heard a preacher say you can never stand still in your relationship with God. You’re either going forwards or you’re going back. I know I wasn’t going forwards in my relationship with God, so that means I spent a whole year backsliding and having pity parties. That’s a bad state of mind to be in. I don’t remember what happened but one day it was like something clicked and I realized “I don’t have to live like this…” and so I stopped.

I think that’s what makes many people doubt what I went through was real, the fact that it finished so fast, the fact that I could literally “snap” out of it. I am not saying, “get a grip, you can just snap out of it” to people. It was a mindset change. Like I said, something clicked. I don’t know what it was but in that moment it was like a little bit of hope came back. It didn’t have to be like this. This wasn’t all there was to life.

I never suffered suicidal thoughts but one thing I often prayed was “God, if this is life, it’s not worth it.” I’m not sure if I was accusing him, or just letting him know that’s how I felt, but I still agree with the statement, if that was life it wasn’t worth it. Thankfully, that’s not life.

The last year has been tough. I’m still getting back to where I was with God before it all happened and I’ve still never talked to anyone expect a couple friends (actually, maybe only one…) in this much detail about that year, so sometimes I think I’m trying to do it too much on my own but I still have a very hard time opening up to people (seriously, posting this is tough but telling it to someone in person… I mean I don’t want to say impossible, but…). I’m relearning how to read my Bible. I’m trying to get that foundation because I want it so bad. I want there to be a God who wants to have a relationship with me, I want to know him, I want there to be hope, I want there to be salvation. I need it. I don’t just want it, I NEED it, because life without that, it isn’t worth it. It just feels empty and hollow and bleak. Very bleak…

So I’ve been excited and hopeful for what’s to come for the first time in a long time and a few months ago it was decided that my church was going to restart and revamp it’s post-secondary Bible school from when I was a kid and as soon as I heard that I knew, yes, that was what my next year was going to be. It was going to happen if it happened based on my desperate prayers alone and I was the only student. And it’s happening guys, it’s happening and I’m really excited. I’m going to be getting theological training, and mentorship, and church ministry practicum, and I’m going to learn so much and grow so much in my relationship with God and I can’t wait! I know it’s going to be frightening and I’m going to have to learn to open up to people and I’m going to have to let go of a lot of control problems but I’m, well not ready, but I’m waiting in anticipation and I’m probably as ready as I’ll ever be!

I’m excited. I’m really excited that I AM excited. This is new. This is a new beginning, and it’s going to be good.

-Becky.

Some of my "textbooks" for school this year

Some of my “textbooks” for school this year