Sunday, September 22, 2013

City vs. Country

While I'm eternally grateful for my new job in rural eastern Washington, I think I'm a city girl at heart.  I was just getting used to life there when I had to leave it.  There are definitely things I can appreciate about the smaller town life.  Many days, I miss Seattle.  But then I have to remind myself about the things that I am definitely not missing.

Things I miss about the city

public transit
businesses staying open late
Madison Pub
the shopping
black people
awesome ethnic cuisine #vietnamesesandwiches
so many things to do
Downtown Cornerstone Church
the skyline

Things I don't miss about the city

those gloomy days
the lack of cheap grocery stores #walmart #winco
having to pay for bags at the grocery store
paper bags instead of plastic bags
getting lost
expensive rent
paying for parking everywhere

Which do you prefer: city life or country life?  

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Review: The Great Gatsby

This movie is my latest obsession.  As a nerdy-English major, I thought that it was my duty to watch the movie.  Though, confession, I've never read the book.  We just bought it, and I get it as soon as my husband is done with it (he called dibs).

The fashion.  Twenties fashion is everywhere right now.  I oogled and oggled the flappers, the pearls, the glitz and glam.  Almost equally as eye-pleasing was what the men were wearing.  Gotta love that slicked back hair, those dapper bowties and straw hats.  Plus, I am now obsessed with this haircut.  Wonder if I could pull it off, or if it just looks beautiful because it's on Carey Mulligan's face.

The twists and turns.  This movie satisfies my appetite for drama and adventure without the gut-wrenching horror brought on by, say, Batman.  There is mystery, suspense, and a twist-ending.  I love/hate the ending--it's a doozy!  The movie wouldn't be the same without the  shocking closer, but I still found myself inwardly chanting things like, "No!"  and "Look out!" and "Don't do it!"

It wasn't fantasy, but it had a fantastic feel to it.  The character of Gatsby seems unreal.  He throws larger than life parties every weekend.  Everyone has heard of him, but no one has met him.  All of the characters, Nick, Daisy, Tom, and Gatsby, live in a world where everything goes.  Perhaps it is the world of New York in the 1920s that makes me feel like I've been transported to another dimension.  It feels both wonderful like the Utopia in Avatar and awful like the Dystopia in the Hunger Games.

Have you seen it yet?  What did you think?  If you haven't, go red-box it, pronto!

Monday, September 2, 2013

It All Happened So Fast

I was living in Seattle for the summer.  I had tried to get a job in Warden (where I grew up) but my app. had arrived a day too late, and so I hadn't even gotten an interview.  I assumed I'd be staying in the city.  And I was happy about it.

Then, I got a job interview for a Language Arts Special Education position at--get this--the Arts and Academics Academy!  A progressive high school that was up-to-date on the latest educational trends.  This was in one of my favorite neighborhoods in Seattle:  White Center.  Over 50 languages are spoken there.  I would have a chance to work with students in poverty, students of color, and students who were struggling.  I was stoked.  The principal called me and said she was going to recommend me for hire.  Mom said those rarely get turned down.  I considered it a done deal.  Husband and I were about to put down a deposit on a beautiful apartment--with a pool.  From that neighborhood, I could walk to work.  I had plans to get a dog. It was perfect.

Until I got that phone call.  The principal said that everyone she'd talk to said they probably wouldn't be able to hire me since I wasn't certified in Sped.  My heart sank.  The next day she confirmed that human resources was unwilling to hire me.  I was broken.  This late in the game it looked like our only option was to live with my parents and sub in Warden, which seemed meager compared to my glamorous city life complete with chic apartment and cute dog.

As if that wasn't tough enough, on the way to a Ross Point Young Adult (Christian) Retreat, our van broke down--in a fatal way.  Where was God?  That weekend we felt so loved. My parents took care of the car.  A friend came and picked us up so we could make it to the retreat.  Friends encouraged us about our marriage, our faith, our future.  I felt like I had nothing, but I was able to move into deeper worship of Jesus and that was somehow better than having a great place to live, and my dream job.  It was a worthy trade:  everything for more intimacy with God.

Then something crazy happened.  I got a call from a principal of a school in Moses Lake--a slightly bigger town near Warden.  I got an interview for a job I hadn't even applied for!  You see, my mom is an educator and knows a lot of principals.  When my last potential job fell through, like any supportive parent would do she advertised me on Facebook.  The high school had an English teacher leave last-minute and wanted to hire someone fast!  After the interview I took a tour around the school, and was hired on the spot.

Meanwhile, Philip had about given up hope for his future.  After a bad experience student teaching he wasn't even sure if he wanted to stick with the field of education.  Then things changed.  He got a job as an Educational Assistant in the field of Special Education.  In the same building as me!  Talk about convenient.  Phil is also going to be working on his Master's in Special Education online.

So now I am a real, live teacher.  I get do actually do the thing I've been talking, learning, and dreaming about for the past five years.  Philip has hope for his future again.  He will get to do a job that he enjoys and that is meaningful.  God's plan was far different than my own, but far better.  Even though I'm still grieving the loss of the life I thought I would have this year, I am excited for the journey that God decided to place me on instead.  He provided in a way that was totally unexpected.  By faith, I can say that he chose the absolute best for me.  We will faithfully follow him down this path.  He is good.
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