Friday, November 22, 2013

Five Minute Friday: Fly

I am joining with Lisa Jo Baker and a community of writers to write for 5 minutes on a given word. The word this week is "Fly"

 5 mins Go!


I see myself and 400 other teens raising their hands in the air and cheering as the plane took off from the Miami airport headed to Ecuador.
Flying over the bright blue Atlantic on my first overseas trip to Spain.
Throwing up and being afraid of crashing as a 6 year old on my first flight. Hating Disneyland once I got there cause the rides were all as frightening as the airplane ride was.
Flying to Amsterdam, thinking how excited I was to be accomplishing my life long dream of going to Africa. Tearing up when we touched down in Rwanda.
Seeing the Prayer Tower from the sky when I went to visit Oral Roberts University for the first time.The excitement I felt in seeing what I had been dreaming of for a year, thinking I was just a few months away from going to school there, when I was actually 3 years away from going to school there.
 Flying to Maryland at 13 on my very first cross country trip. Never imagining the places I would fly to in just a few years. Seeing lightning bugs for the first time in Georgia, and catching them in a jar.

Five Minute Friday

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Crazy is my stalker

Ok, it's official, crazy...just...follows me.My mom says I wear a freak magnet, and I always laughed at it as a joke, but I'm starting to see how right she is.

My job deals all day long with kids having bad behaviors. With that I have gazillions of war stories, none of which I can share on the internet due to confidentiality issues, but they are just totally wild.

After bedtime each night, my co-workers and I will sit there talking about the events of the day, and many times all we can do is sit there gasping for breath, laughing at how unbelievable some of the stuff is that happens in our work day.

All that to say, Monday was an especially wild day at work. When I went to take my break, I was ready for it. Again we were giddy with laughter at how bizarre some of the events were, and I kept laughing as I made my way to Taco Bell for my break.

Inside there was a Taco Bell worker tapping his hand rapidly on the cashier station. He looked very upset. I stared for a minute waiting to see if he would acknowledge me, then I spoke up, "Are you ok?"

He stayed in his blank irritated stare and another worker hurried to the front to take my order.

I ordered and paid, then watched quite the scene unfold.

The manager, (I assume anyway) approached the guy and said,"Let's go have a chat outside."
The worker went bizzurke and right there started shouting at the loudest decimal, cussing and nearly crying. He mumbled a lot, added in with a bit of emphasis on "Eff You!"

Right when it sounded like he was quieting and calming, he ran to the other side of the room where no one was at, and started throwing chairs and screaming with even greater emphasis on "Eff this place!"

My nerves were reeling, but I guess I was rather calm about it all because I had just dealt with similar behavior at work. I heard a worker ask the manager, "Should I call the cops?" to which he replied, "Um...."

Then I called out to the guy, "Eh, bro! I know all about how effed up bad jobs can make you feel. But how about you go calm your self down with some fresh air outside, and don't let this crappy job make you wind up with a criminal record? I mean, a crappy job ain't worth ruining a clean record am I right?"

To my delight, the guy hushed almost instantly when I said this. His breathing slowed, and he started to cry as he calmly walked outside.

The other worker apologized profusely as she handed me my food. I tried my best to laugh it off and told her, "You have no idea how used to it I am. Is he gonna be ok?"

She responded, "He's got a lot going on."

When I walked out to my car, the guy was sitting on the curb crying, "I'm sorry, I'm so sorry" while the manager was patting his back.

I got back to my work and the first people I saw was a supervisor and nurse. I simply laughed and said to them, "I swear, crazy just follows me."

Monday, November 18, 2013

Treats, trips, and tricks

For Halloween I went with a group from ORU  door to door collecting canned food for a homeless ministry.
Most people also insisted on handing out candy as well to us. I announced half way through, "Guys, y'all are witnessing my first time ever trick or treating!" Another girl raised her hand in the air and gave me an excited high five and cheered, "Mine too!"

Then one girl said, "Anna, you better blog about it!" And she informed me that she reads my blog regularly and gets a good laugh at my common minor misfortunes. I told her I would give her a shout out in my next post. So.....Hi Emily!!!

This last week I drove with 4 others to Dallas, Texas. It's definitely one of my favorite places and I hope to live there someday.
We spent the night listening to the preaching of Joseph Prince. It was kinda cool to me because I knew my mom had just listened to him a few nights before in Long Beach, California.

The weather has been a typical Oklahoma November...completely unpredictable. Friday was nearly blizzard worthy, Saturday felt like summer, Sunday morning was hot, and Sunday night was freezing. This morning I am wearing two layers of pants, a t-shirt, a sweater, and a coat.

Last night I got back to campus from work, and my car heater was blowing full blast. I was not looking forward to getting out and making the long trek to my dorm building.So I delayed a long while. I turned the radio on to a slow jazz station, laid my chair down, and just enjoyed the heat and music.

About 20 minutes later I hear knocking on my window. It startled me.

A guy had a look of concern and asked, "Are you ok?"
Confused, I rubbed my eyes and rolled my window down a bit, "Hmm, yeah, just listening to music."
"Oh, ok," he said while looking a little embarrassed, "I thought you were having some kinda health issue. Your car was just idling for a long time, and you weren't moving."
I just giggled, "Nope, I'm fine, just enjoying the music, ha ha, thanks for looking out for me though."

It was a bit strange but also funny, and nice to know people are looking out for me.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Africa, I miss your skies

 ORU Missions season is back in session. New teams have formed, new meetings, new fundraisers, and new dreams. I am finding myself really dissapointed that I am unable to be a part of it again this year. Missions has always been a huge part of my life, and I always feel out of place when I am not a part of it.

Oklahoma has some of the best sunsets in the world in my opinion. But one place that has it beat, is Uganda. I miss those 30 days of waking up and going to sleep with the sun and stars all shining with a glorious glow.

That's what's been on my mind lately.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Five Minute Friday "Grace"

Cindy posted something interesting on her blog, part of a large group taking 5 minutes to blog on the chosen word of the day. It's something I want to try out.
This week is on Grace

Grace, when I wake up realizing I completely forgot about a paper due today, only to come to class and have the teacher say he's postponed the due date.
Grace, when my car won't start, and I find out I have free roadside assistance with my insurance.
 Grace, when I talk a suicidal foster girl out of her state of hopelessness.
Grace, when a foster boy gets angry at me and pees allover the room to get me back.
Grace, when that boys comes crying in apology and admits he misses his home and I am honestly able to tell him I forgive.
Grace, when the elderly man keeps me at Walmart until 2 am, talking about how much he misses his deceased wife.
Grace, when I am able to convince him he needs Jesus to heal his hurt.
Grace, when I am dreading the cold outside, only to walk out and find it is warm.
Grace, right when I am feeling like I can't do anything good, and a girl comes and tells me how much I have helped her.
Grace, when a bill gets paid by someone else unexpectedly.

That's what comes to my mind in 5 minutes of talking about the word grace.

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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Oh Christmas Tree

Since I got hired at a full time job in August, I have been telling my family I most likely will not be home for Christmas. As the season has drawn closer, my heart has ached more, thinking that it has been almost a year since I have visited, at it has looked like it would be more like 2 years until I would get to see my homeland.

To my surprise and joy, this week my work told me I was good to leave for 3 weeks for Christmas!
 This of course, has had Christmas on my mind all week.

One thing I never imagined when I moved to Oklahoma, was how many times I would be accused of lying when I showed people pictures of my home and told them that the giant fir trees that surrounded me were grown up Christmas trees.

So many people here have insisted that Christmas trees are used as such, because they do not grow any bigger than they are at Christmas.

One thing I very much miss about Oregon is the never ending green all around me.  Most of my life I spent every free moment I had in the outdoors, admiring the splendorous plants and animals all around me. Country life in Oregon is very different from country life in Oklahoma. In Oklhoma country is a trailer, junky cars piled up in the yard, and flat wheat fields as far as the eye can see. Don't get me wrong, I love the scenery of's just very different.

Oregon country life still has the junky cars  piled up, but it also entails rolling hills as steep as Oklahomans would call mountains. Trees taller than buildings, deer, birds, and bodies of fresh water.

Most times when I write on this blog, it's to share Oklahoma with my family and friends in Oregon. But I want to take this time to share Oregon with my Oklahoma friends.

All these pictures were taken at my home, at which I lived from age 5 to 21. This is the country life I loved...and here's the grown up Christmas trees, for all who don't believe.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Freaky Fall

Forgive me father for I have sinned. It has been 12 days since my last confession...ehem...I mean blog update.
Fall has come to Tulsa and with it every day has been different. One day I want to wear an eskimo jacket, the next day is shorts weather.
Today has been a denim jeans and t-shirt kind of day.

The fall weather has brought with it some crazy encounters for me.

Last week I went into Hobby Lobby for some new decorations for my dorm. I was in there for about 20 minutes. When I came out I found I left my headlights on. My car would not start. I was a little worried because I had just filled up my tank with gas that was 39 cents cheaper than anywhere else, so I thought I had bought bad gas that killed my engine.

A homeless looking man approached me when he heard my car not starting. He said, "Your starter has gone out. You'll need a new one. I am a mechanic, I can have your car up and running in 20 minutes. Normal price is $2000, I'll only charge you $700.

The guy must have thought I was a car illiterate woman, but I knew better, that it was just my battery died, because I could hear the starter turning, and I know starters don't cost $2000

I kindly smiled and said, thanks but no thanks. Then I got on the phone with my insurance. Sure enough, roadside assistance is covered! Woohoo! Help arrived 15 minutes later, and all I needed was a jump.

The next evening I stopped at walgreens on my way home from work. Drunk guy walks in right behind me. Starts getting mouthy with the staff because they tell him he can't order pizza here. Then he stumbles towards me, and asks me if I work there too. I love drunk people cause they're so fun to mess with...
I give staff a thumbs up that, "I've got this." I say, "No, I'm just another zoo goer looking for the zebras." He asks me if I know where he can get pizza. I say, "I think there's a vendor two doors down at the shoe shop. But good luck getting past the elephants blocking the entrance. You'll wanna buy some of this alligator repellant first." I reach for the nearest object and hand him a hearing aid.
Guy kindly thanks me then stumbles over and pays $30 for a hearing aid, nods his head and walks down the street.
Me and the 2 staff just stood there busting up. Guy is gonna be very curious when he wakes up with his new hearing aid.

We had worker appreciation week at work. They've fed me pizza and cake everyday. I got a good laugh out of one of the cakes made. Old man baby cake.

I put a request in to get christmas break off from work, but still waiting to find out if I will get to be home for the holidays or not.

Then the madness continued today with more crazy frustrating yet crazy good events. Dropped my laptop, thought I broke it. Relieved when I found it still works. Lost my keys. Set my backpack in a puddle of liquid in the bathroom. Slipped and fell because of an acorn. Bird pooped on my shoulder, spilled coffee in class................................... Found $16 in my pocket that I have no clue where it came from. 

This day just got a whole lot better.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

My reason

I have been at my job for a little over a month now. In that time I have been in wrestling matches, been hit, been spit on, had water poured on me, bleach spray sprayed at me, and had hand sanitizer flung at my eyes.
The other day it was supposed to be quiet time, and one person kept being talkative and disruptive. I told him that if he wouldn't be quiet, then I would take everything from his room until bedtime. He hollered back in a snooty tone, "You're so mean, why do you even want to work here?!"

I answered him in his same tone, "For the money!" I of course laughed to let him know I was joking.

I approached him and said, "I am going to be a DHS social worker in two years. I am here for the experience. I am learning from you guys. I am spending the next two years working here, learning how to help you kids, so that when I'm a social worker, I will know better how to train parents, so that other kids like you don't have to end up being sent to a place like this."

His entire mannerism changed in an instant. He replied after a few seconds of silence, "Woah, I've never heard anyone say that before. That's so cool. So I am helping you help other kids?"

I smiled, "Exactly, and that's why I need you to do your best to work with me. Help me help you, instead of always fighting with me. If you could focus on getting better, I can help figure out ways for you to improve. Then you will get to go home, and I will know more how to help other kids get better while never having to leave home."

He answered me, "I like you....I'll do that."

His behavior the past week has been amazing. It turns out all he needed was for someone to say they cared. It was also an eye opener for me. I hadn't really stopped to think about it, until that conversation. I thought the job sounded so cool. An awesome experience is what I kept telling people. But it's so much more than that. It's a life changing experience. I am learning what school could never teach me, how to heal hurt.

Every kid helped today, is a lesson for how to help another kid tomorrow. Helping abused kids is no longer a dream of mine, it's a reality.

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Book Ventures!

In March 2010 I turned on my laptop, opened up a new Word document, and typed the first words, "Glenn Jackson stared at the red November sunset. Curiosity glowed in three year old Annie Copeland’s eyes. Cuddling her in his arms, Glenn squeezed his goddaughter tight and smiled as he rocked the porch swing."

Since that first paragraph, the story, "Visionary" has greatly consumed my life. I finished writing it as I drove through Utah, while moving to Oklahoma in July 2012.  For a year I worked on fine tuning and editing it.

Then in July of this year, I took the advice of several literacy agents, and contacted a very welly known professional editor to see if she was interested in working on my story. 

The editor said she loved the sample I sent her, and she put me on her calendar for October 7 to November 4. 

When that is finished, I will be set to start getting some one to publish my book. 

Since I picked up a pencil and started telling stories in 2nd grade, it has been a dream of mine to publish books. Now, I am looking at being a published author hopefully by next year!

      How one simple life became a legend

Monday, September 30, 2013

The Dark Before the Dawn

Saturday morning I watched the blue sky turn grey then black with ugly storm clouds. By midday the rain started pouring down.

In Oklahoma, it doesn't rain often, but when it does rain, it rains! It pours down like someone standing above my head with a hose.

As the rain was pouring down, the wind began to pick up. Shortly after that, the lightning and thunder started.

It was an all out, big, nasty storm.

The storm lasted all day. It seemed to get worse and worse. The power went off for about 10 seconds. If that was not surprising enough, it went off right as there was a lightning strike, startling me into thinking lightning must have struck the building.

The storm was brutal. Trees swayed in the strong wind, the rain poured so hard that I could barely see beyond 20 feet outside my window, and lightning and thunder roared for hours.

I fell asleep late that night, still hearing wind, rain, and loud thunder.

I was really expecting to wake up to more ugly clouds and gloomy weather. But instead I woke with a big smile as the sky greeted me with absolute beauty.

I then remembered that, that's how Oklahoma weather tends to be. Storms are bad, really bad, but the weather that follows is phenomenal. I am still used to Oregon weather where all I'd see for days, or even weeks, was cold rain and clouds.

When I fell asleep to terrible, and woke to beautiful, I was filled with awe, and reminded of how there is always good just around the corner of every trial.

Sunday morning I began to think about how everyday is truly a new beginning. While Saturday was dark and stormy, the next day the storm was out of sight, and the area was even more beautiful than before.

It reminded me of some of the hardest times in my life, and how even though some very ugly, very stormy events occurred, once it was all over, I could see God's beautiful saving grace through the hard times.

When I became a Christian, I was deep into some terrible addictions and actions. But when I cried out for God to save me, he did not leave me in that dark despair. Instead, he answered my cries, forgot my past, and gave me a bright tomorrow.

Monday, September 16, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 10: Purse finder extraordinaire
One funny fact about me, is that if your purse or credit card goes missing, there's a chance I may be the one to find it. I am always finding missing things; dogs, cats, keys, credit cards, but most of all, purses.

It started about 6 years ago. I was headed to a weekend event in rural Washington. It was a warm summer day, and I was driving down a windy country road alongside a river. I glanced to my right and saw a purse on the side of the road. I hit my brakes, and then reversed. I thought, "Oh no, some one out enjoying the river forgot their purse."

I got out of my truck, planning to look in the purse for contact info, to return it to its' owner. But I was very surprised when I picked it up off the street, and it was completely empty. It was a nice black leather Mary Kay purse. I searched every corner and pocket, there wasn't even a crumb or speck of lint. It looked brand new and totally spotless.

I shrugged and took it to my truck and thought, "Guess it's mine now." 6 years later, I still have it.

Another time I was picking up a friend to take to church. She lived way, way far out in the country. Again, by a river. I picked her up and we were about a mile away from her home when I noticed a bright yellow sticking out from some bushes.

I stared at it as I passed, wondering what it was, when  I realized, it was a purse. I got out and pulled it out of the bushes. This time, it was packed with valuables; credit cards, social security card, student id, and driver's license.
 I called the contact info and got the girl's mom. She told me her daughter and friend had been at the river swimming, when someone broke into their car and stole their purses. The mom was very worried her daughter's identity would be stolen, but she was so excited when we discussed the items, and the only thing missing was cash and an iPod.

I met the girl at the church later that day. She even gave me $50 as a thank you.

The most recent find was this summer. I was out exercising with a friend, when I spotted something on the ground. I turned back around and looked closer to find it was a credit card.

I picked it up and finished my route. When we got back to campus, I tried calling the customer service line to report I had found it. But the automated calling center did not have an option for that, and it would not let me talk to a representative without entering the card's social security number.

I got on facebook and tried to look the person up. There was no profile for them, but I did notice some interesting facebook pages dedicated to a judge with that name, that were made to show hate for the judge.
I looked the name up on Google, and found out the card belonged to an Oklahoma state judge.

I ended up taking the card to the police station, because I could not figure out a safer way of getting it to its owner.

One of the most hilarious experiences though, was when I found a purse in the CCC parking lot. It had a cell phone in it, so I decided to recall the last number dialed.
A man answered in a sexy tone, "Are you ready to change your mind, my luscious lesbian lover?"

My faced burned red, and I struggled to speak, "Um, hi, I just found this phone."

The guy was so embarrassed that his voiced cracked like a 13 year old boy, "Oh!, oh God, I'm uh, I'm sorry."

I told him I was going to leave the purse at lost and found, and he said he would let his girlfriend know. He thanked me and ended the call with another, "I'm so sorry."

Friday, September 13, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 8: My funniest joke, was one I didn't get.

When I was a kid, I had a line I always used to be funny. If I was feeling awkward, uncomfortable, bored, or goofy, I would use this one joke.
I didn't understand why, but every time I said it to an adult, they would laugh. It worked like a charm, every time. And so I took advantage of it.

It didn't start out as a joke though. It started out with me being very deeply offended, and trying to talk about it with an adult. When ever I tried to complain, people would just start laughing.

When I would ask what was so funny, people would either just pat my head, or just laugh without saying anything. Now and then I would get someone to speak, but they wouldn't answer my question, they would just say, "You're so funny."

It all started when I watched tv. I suddenly heard the familiar tune of a song I sang in church. I went to sing along, and discovered the lyrics were different. My jaw dropped right then. I was appalled. They changed the words to a worship song.

That's where it started. I spoke to my children's church pastor the next Sunday, and tried to vent to her about how horrible it was that a non-Christian had changed the song to make it secular. I was thrown off when the pastor started laughing and walked away.

It happened again and again. Every adult I tried to vent to, would laugh. No one would tell me why it was funny. I got angry at the first few responses, but then decided that I just had to go with it, and that's when I began intentionally using it to make people laugh.

I used it regularly for probably 2 years, before I got tired of it and eventually forgot about it.

It wasn't until years later, when I was 16, that I heard the song again, remembered my offense, and finally understood why everyone thought my rant was funny.

I still kinda wish someone had told me, that my favorite worship song, "Nah, nah, nah, nah, hey, hey, hey, praise God" was not changed to please atheists, by making the lyrics "Nah, nah, nah, nah, hey, hey, hey goodbye!"

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 7: A smelly snack and a stinky situation.

Mom and me 17 years prior to me messing up her car.
I mentioned yesterday about a little of my struggle with having no sense of smell, and how it ratted me out for the tortillas I destroyed the microwave with.

I think that was a perfect transition into this story.

My parents had gone away for a week. In that time I and my  brother had borrowed my mom's car only maybe a total of three times. My mom was still a bit bitter over me spilling coffee a few weeks before, so she had said to only use the car for emergencies.

When she got back home, she was furious. "What is that awful smell in my car and which one of you made it smell like that!" My brother and I both shrugged, not having a clue what she was talking about.

The next day my parents went to church, and ended up using my step dad's truck because the smell was unbearable.

For the next several days my mom was so mad about how terrible her car smelled. All three smelling family members agreed is was a horrible smell, and none of us had a clue what caused it. We started to suspect maybe some little rodent had gotten in and died.

Then I came home from work one night, and as I walked in my mom, step dad, and brother all stood in the entry way, with their arms crossed, and giving me that, "You are so dead," glare.

I stuck my hands in the air and said with a tone of horror, "What did I do?"

My brother spoke first, "Facebook gave away your little secret."
My mom added, "I've been complaining for days when and all along you knew it was you."
I repeated with even more sheer terror, "What did I do?"

As it turns out, I had borrowed my mom's car for an important  meeting. Afterwards I forgot that I had stopped at the store. While at the store I bought a snack on a whim.  I had always heard it tasted disgusting, but had only tried them for the first time a few weeks before at a party, and I thought they were tasty. So I bought some more at the store that day.

I had no clue that they did not smell as yummy as they tasted. They were packaged in water. Or at least that's what I thought. Odorless, tasteless, harmless, water. I had bought a few other unusual snacks that I had never tried before and when I got home I mentioned the snacks on facebook.

On the drive home, I thought of how much I liked the snack at the party, so I succumbed to my desires, and opened it up and ate a few in the car. I spilled a bit of the water, but it didn't register to me as important, since it was just harmless water. It was so unimportant in my mind, that when my family confronted me on it, I couldn't even remember which car I had driven when eating the snack.

It turns out, I had no idea how bad 4 day old sardine juice smells in a confined, hot car.

To this day, three years later, my mom says it still smells like rotten fish in her car.

Needless to say, I've been banned for life from eating or drinking in my mom's vehicles. 

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 6: I killed the microwave with a tortilla (and nearly took the house down too).

Ok, so maybe I am finding out about myself from all this writing, that I am an idiot. If I hadn't proven it already, this story will do it.

I was home alone, and in the mood to eat something Mexican. I don't know why, but our tortillas were in the freezer. They all froze together, so I couldn't just pull one out.

I don't have an actual picture, but this gives a good illustration.
I figured the most reasonable thing to do was to put the frozen chunk in the microwave in order to thaw it out.

Harmless, right? But I didn't think ahead as to what would be a good amount of time to leave it in. I set it for 10 minutes, and went to the other side of the house.

It didn't help at all that I do not have a sense of smell.

I came running to the kitchen 8 minutes later, because I heard the smoke alarm going off. The entire kitchen was filled with black smoke.

I gagged on the smoke and opened a nearby door as all the smoke alarms in the house started going off one by one.

At first I was confused as to what was causing the smoke, but the smoke started to pour out the open door and the air began to clear, I realized the microwave was still on, and the smoke was pouring out of it.

I reached out and tried to open the door, but it was so hot it hurt to touch. I had to go behind and unplug it from the wall. The cord was hot too.

I was so scared that I forgot to even scream. But after what felt like forever, the smoke stopped pouring out the microwave. I walked around the house and opened all the doors and windows. The smoke had made it into every single room in the house.

Once all the smoke had cleared, and my adrenaline had calmed, I went to inspect the microwave. The once white microwave, was now completely black on the inside.

I got Clorox wipes and started trying to wipe off all the charred blackness. A few hours later, it was a dark brown inside, but the mess was a cleaned up as possible. I swept, mopped, and wiped everything in the area trying to clean up. The air was flowing through the house with all the doors and windows still open.

I thought I was finally over the whole ordeal, and began to shut the windows and doors.

Just when I finished, my mom and brother came home. Mom came in first. She ran in. "What's burning!" She exclaimed, as she hurried around the house trying to find the source.

My brother came next, and covered his nose and announced, "Oh, oh God! It reeks in here! What happened? Is something on fire?"

I had tried to clean the house as well as possible, and crossed my fingers that no one would ever have to know about what happened, but I had not accounted for smell telling the story.

The microwave had to be thrown out, and the house smelled like smoke for weeks.

What I learned from all of this.........frozen tortillas do not take 10 minutes in the microwave!

Sunday, September 8, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 4: I crashed my truck... Because I was praying.
 I was 19 when I had my first and (knock on wood) only crash.
It all happened so fast. It took me several weeks to remember all of what happened, because at first all I could remember was driving down the road, and then shouting "Oh no, oh no, oh no, aaah!" then slamming into a hill.

But now I remember all the details, and it's quite funny.

It was a Wednesday, on April 22, 2010 and I got out of class early, so I decided to do my absolute favorite hobby; I went on a joy ride in my truck. I went through my home town of Molalla, and followed a long country road, Sawtell. I had a point on the road where I normally turned around, because the road turned to dirt.
On this day I decided to keep going to see where the road led to. I followed it for quite a while before I notice I only had a quarter tank of gas left. I thought about turning around, but then I pulled out my gps (the one that had a death wish towards me). It said if I followed the road for 7 more miles, I would reach a gas station. So I decided to keep going.

It was April, it was warm, so I was very surprised when I started seeing snow on the sides of the road. Something told me this was a bad sign and I should turn around. I stopped, and grabbed some snow to laugh that I was in snow on a warm day. Then I ignored my instinct and kept driving.

The snow started covering the ground, but I figured with the gas now just 5 miles away, I must be nearing the end of the snow. Then in an instant, the truck hit a huge pile of snow. I was stuck.

I tried to reverse and the wheels just spun in the snow. I tried going forward, same thing. I got out and tried pushing the truck backward, and I slipped and fell on the ground. I got back in my truck, stared at the gas gauge and said out loud, "Oh crap."

It had been at least 10 miles since I had seen the last house, it was getting late, and I knew the sun would set soon. I had no cell service and I was afraid, "What if I walk to a house and a psycho answers and holds me captive? What if an animal attacks me along the way? What if something happens to me, and my family will never know where I went?"

I felt I was in big, big trouble. Just then I thought that I needed to pray. So I did. I asked God to move the truck so that I could get back down the road. I remember being able to feel the nerves all over my body, cause I was that nervous. But just as I prayed, the truck literally scooted back a foot on its own and I was able to get out of the snow.

My adrenaline was still rushing and I was in a hurry, because all I wanted was to be in the safety of my home. When I finally got back to an area of the road I recognized, I let out a big sigh of relief.

I looked up at the sky and said, "Thank you Jesus!"

When I looked back at the road, I discovered I was just about to reach a sharp turn. I slammed on my brakes, but wasn't slowing down fast enough. In my panic, my tires went off the road into gravel, and the truck spun in a circle.

I saw a field in the distance, and a massive cliff right in front of me, and I was screaming at the top of my lungs, because I thought I was about to go off the cliff. But as my truck spun out of control, it swerved to the other side of the road, and I slammed into the side of the hill.

I was dizzy and confused at first. Then I thought I needed to call someone. I couldn't find my phone. I had it in my cup holder and while I was out of control, it had flown across the truck and hid itself somewhere.
Where my step dad hammered the front

Just then a truck carrying a bunch of young men came up the hill, and drove right past me, all pointing and laughing at me as they went. This is when I broke out in crying.
A few minutes later, a man and his granddaughter came and stopped to help me.
It all ended well. The front fender and grill were knocked off, and part of the front was smashed in, but my step dad hammered the front back out, and duct tapped the fender and grill back on, and I was driving the truck again 2 weeks later.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 3: Got an A in PE because running is against my religion

Sarcasm is a major part of who I am. I tell people, English is not my native language, sarcasm is. My sarcastic and playful personality is what introduced me to some of my best friends, but my sarcasm has also gotten me in some of my deepest trouble.

My usual pissed off self
There was, though, one time my sarcastic remark had an epically awesome outcome. 

In 8th grade I had a bad life, a bad attitude, and bad grades. My progress reports and report cards were all C's and D's. That was the norm for my grades starting in 6th grade and lasting to the end of 8th grade. But if you were to ever look at my 8th grade report card, there is one surprising mark on it.

PE, the subject I have never liked, had an A. Most would figure this is because physical education is an easy A. Normally this would be true, but for me it was a little different.

This year I had a teacher who had a reputation for being gullible, and very clumsy. If I had known she would fall for it, I would have done it sooner, but the real story, I was very honestly just trying to be funny while in an especially sarcastic mood.

The teacher told us to run 5 laps around the gym. I raised my hand and approached her with a look of deep concern and said, "I can't do that. Running is against my religion. In fact, it's one of the worst sins there are!" 

I smirked figuring she was just about to yell at me to knock it off and get back in line to run. But to my surprise, she gasped and covered her mouth, "I'm sorry, I didn't know! Is jogging ok?"

I was impressed, I thought she was responding to me with the same tone of sarcasm. I was not used to adults going along with my jokes. I answered, "In my religion, we believe that running makes you miss all the beauty and even warnings of what's to come. The slower you walk the better. It's frowned upon to do anything in a rush, but it's sinful to go too fast."

She then told me that I could walk as slow as I needed to. So while the rest of the class ran around me, I strolled along with a smile of victory, even if it was only going to last one day.

To my surprise, when we had class again, the teacher had the class run again, and reminded me that I could walk. This lasted the entire semester.

I was uneasy about it. I didn't know if she was still just being sarcastic, and was going to fail me because I wasn't running. But I tried to tell myself that it wouldn't matter if she gave me a bad grade, because it would match all my other classes.

The end of the semester, I read through my report card. "C, C, C, D, D, D, A??!" I couldn't believe I had an A. it was the first I'd had since 3rd grade. That was the glorious moment of truth, when I realized she really wasn't being sarcastic, and was fine with me walking and doing everything slowly, because she didn't want me to sin in my religion. 

Needless to say, the next semester, I milked it out for all it was worth, and was as lazy as humanly possible, and blamed it all on my religion. That next semester ended with an A as well.
8th grade graduation, 2 months before I became a Christian, and the first time in years that I tried to look nice.

Friday, September 6, 2013

30 Days 30 Random Facts About Me

Day 2: I've been banned by the Red Cross.

In high school I greatly looked forward to turning 18 and being able to donate blood. It was an exciting concept to me, my blood running through some one else's veins to keep them alive.

I was very pleased when I discovered my community college was a big advocate of blood drives. They had one every time the time limit to donate again was up.

It was at CCC that I donated for the first time. Everything seemed to go well, but at the end the nurse mentioned, "It was a little rough getting it to stop bleeding. No worries though, you'll just have some bruises from it."

By "bruises" I imagined I might get a little purple around the area the needle went in. Instead by the next evening , I was black and blue all over my arm, from shoulder to wrist. It was kinda scary, but mostly very, very.....very embarrassing.

When I went to the store later that week, the store clerk slipped a battered women's hotline card in my cash back. People everywhere stopped to gawk and ask, "Woah, what happened?"

My heart beat got off rhythm too. It would be beating normal, and then seemed to skip two beats, and then beat super fast until it calmed to a normal rate again. It felt like I had gas in my chest when it happened.

Time went by, and I shrugged it off as just a freak thing that happened. By the next blood drive, I was excited to sign up again.

Things seemed to go a little better the 2nd time. They did fine finding a vein, and removing the needle from the vein. It all seemed very well, until I went to leave. Yep, I fainted.

One moment I was smiling and proudly walking away, the next moment I was lying on the floor with 10 people surrounding me all asking if I was ok. I insisted I was fine and just a little dizzy, as I tried to pull myself up to stand again. I was halfway up, when I found myself waking up on the floor again. They made me stay there laying in the chair for 2 hours.

It scared me enough that I waited a year before working up the nerve to try donating again. Third time's a charm ya know!
This time, they had trouble finding a vein, but got it in and the blood started flowing, and flowing, and flowing and flowing. The nurse called a supervisor, and it kept flowing. I didn't really pick up that anything was wrong, until the supervisor said, "I think we need to call a paramedic."

They couldn't get me to stop bleeding!

They told me to stay calm, when I was actually more calm then they were. Just when the supervisor said she was going to get help, the nurse exclaimed, "It's stopped!"

Again I had to lay there for an hour and a half. Then three weeks later, I got this lovely letter in the mail.

The letter went on to say that due to complications, the Red Cross felt it was unsafe for me to participate in future blood drives.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

30 Days, 30 Random Facts About Me

As I return home from an evening jog, an idea popped in my head, that I thought would be fun to do. So for the next 30 days, each day I will share a random fact about me.

Day 1: I was once a military security breech.

Crazy huh? The swarmed my car with guns and everything. They laughed when I told them I was a new 17 year old driver, going out of state on my own for the first time, but they weren't laughing at first.
It all started when I was in possession of a gps I am to this day convinced had a death wish towards me.  It would tell me to turn right onto a railroad sometimes, but those sometimes always only happened when a train was approaching. Or it would tell me to turn left on a right only street.

I was headed home from Seattle, Washington. It was an 6 hour drive back to my home in Oregon. I had my driver's license for 6 months and it was my first time driving out of state, or anywhere long distance for that matter.

I needed to stop to use the restroom. I got off the interstate and went to a McDonald's. When I went to get back on the interstate, I took a wrong turn. I thought about turning around, but my gps recalculated and told me to keep going straight for 6 miles.
I listened and I followed the directions. It took a very long time and some bizarre turns, when I started seeing signs for Fort Lewis. I was wondering why I was getting closer to it, instead of closer to the interstate.

Quickly enough, I hit the entrance of the fort. That's when I saw the gps instructed me to drive through the base. I assumed, "Oh, it must be ok for civilians to drive through."

A man in uniform stood aside of the entrance, and waved his hand side to side. I thought he was gesturing for me to come in. Turns out he was gesturing no entrance, because the base was closed for the day for security training. The training was on intrusions.

I put my foot on the gas, and went forward faster than I would recommend. He waved his hands in the air and shouted, "Stop! Stop!" and he smacked his hand fast on the back of my truck.

I slammed on the brakes, and instantaneously there were military men with guns surrounding me.
He ordered very sternly for me to step out of the truck with my hands in the air. I did, then he asked why I was not in uniform.
I stumbled over my words, with my hands still in the air, and tried the best I could to explain I was following my gps, I was not in the military, and I had just taken a wrong turn.
He asked for my ID. Then saw I was only 17. That's when he asked me if I was really not part of the drill.
"No sir!" I answered while trying my best not to cry.

He replied, "Well, you could not have picked a worse day to make this wrong turn. Did you read the signs? The fort is closed for the day young lady! And we thought you were the scheduled security breech with a car packed with explosives."

"No sir, I am not an actor, and I don't have any explosives. I'm sorry sir, I've never driven out of state on my own before!"

The cool part of the trip was getting to see my grandpa and family.
I also got a free hug that trip

Friday, August 30, 2013


Me standing at the spot the bomb was left.
The Child Welfare department of Oklahoma has a program with all the big universities, where they select a few social work students and pay $7000 per semester for their Junior and Senior years, if the student agrees work for the department for 18 months afterwards.
I am really hoping to be one of the chosen few.
Today was the first step of the application process, where all hopefuls had to meet in Oklahoma City for a seminar on the in's and out's of child welfare work.
ORU took a van full.
On the way back to campus, we stopped at the Oklahoma City Bombing Memorial.

The memorial has chairs with the name of each victim in the perspective spot they would have been when killed. The trees outline the walls of the building.

Thousands of children sent in art as condolences to the families.They transferred the art onto a wall as a thank you to all the children for showing their support.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Syria and college aged ignorance

I have always rolled my eyes at anti- war protests. I saw it as the hippie straggly haired people who don't have jobs and don't believe in deodorant, as anti war protesters. And I seriously never would have imagined myself getting so fired up about a potential war.

However, I am finding myself more and more emotionally charged by everything that's happening.

In the age of information, I am finding my fellow college students are mostly down-right clueless. I think that is what is bugging me the most.
We seem to think as a generation, that someone else is taking care of the problem, and that everything is alright. 
I was standing in my college deli today, looking up a a tv screen with Fox News on which had in big captions "US Warships arrive on coast of Syria".
As I stood focusing on the screen, a girl approached and asked me, "What happened? Are they the ones that bombed the marathon?"
I answered, "No! They haven't done anything to us."
"Why?" she then asked, "Why are we fighting them? Are they a threat to us?"
Again I answered, "No! The only time they will be a threat to us is if we DO fight them. China and Russia have already sent ships saying they will strike back if we decide to do anything."
The girl shrugged as she walked away, "I'm sure Obama knows what he is doing."

Our president is on the verge of sparking World War 3 and that doesn't matter?!
In class right after that, a teacher casually mentioned, "And we think our economy is bad now, just wait until after this new war starts."
A male student raised his hand and asked, "What war? Are we going to fight Pakistan?"
The teacher explained a little bit of the situation, and then the male student again spoke up, "Hmm, that doesn't make sense why America is getting involved."
The class then went back to focusing on psychology.
Where is the passion, where are the protesters, and where is the public interest?!
Any other day in age, people would have been even more fired up about this than I am.

I have always been one who liked originality and uniquness. Where others liked to think outside the box, for me there was no box. I like things different, and bizarre. Many people tried to squash that trait in me as a child, and said that it meant there was something wrong with me, if I didn't follow along with the consensus.

Many of my peers were drugged to stay in line, told they had ADD or ADHD, or in many cases both! The side effects of the drugs caused depression, for which they were handed another pill and forced to swallow. In some cases that caused stuttering and twitches, which there was ANOTHER pill for! Other peers grew up being told to shut up and follow the rules, no matter if they agreed with the rules or not. If they disagreed with something, they were punished and labeled defiant.

What I see now, is a generation that just goes along with what ever they are told to do. Even when it could mean the utter devastation of our planet. Young adults are very uninterested in the injustices of the world. Just look how quickly people stopped talking about the Sandy Hook massacre compared to Columbine. 6 months vs. 6 years.

Why am I complaining about all of this?

Syria is in the midst of an ugly civil war.That's a fact. But that's about the only fact we have. Chemical gases were used to kill hundreds of people. Churches and Mosques seem to be a priority target. But both sides are killing each other in heinous ways. It's not one side massacring the other side.
We've got a bad leader ordering the murders of civilians, and international jihadist Al Qaeda militants fighting back. It's a lose lose situation. But none the less, it's a situation that the United States has no business in.

What are the risks of not involving ourselves? 1. History shaming us and saying we should have done something.
What are the risks of getting involved? 1. Killing innocent people. 2. Al Qaeda targeting America for another 9/11. 3. Our already wrecked economy being completely destroyed. 3. China sanctions and or take over of the USA for our trillions owed to them. 4. Nukes being fired off by USA, UK, Russia, Iran, and China. 5. History shaming us for getting involved.

All in all, several nations have vowed retaliation. We are very much on the brink of a world war, and no one seems to care.
So I want to say.........WAKE UP AMERICA!!!!!!!

Btw, I never thought I would ever in my life say this, but, this Saturday I will be going to my first ever protest.