Sunday, December 29, 2013

"You are my refuge, you are my strength

As I pour out my heart, these things I remember

You are faithful God, forever."


Saturday, December 28, 2013

the 26th

dancing with Alicia 

looking at cabins with Caleb 


playing games with family and friends 

*photos courtesy of Mimi and her new camera :) 

Friday, December 27, 2013

jac jac had a nice Christmas too


So many times in the past few months my thoughts have been reduced to the word "why".

Christmas morning the Lord very powerfully answered my question with simply

 "so that you could be amazed by ME". 


Thank you church family for your unbelievable love and care this year. I spent Christmas morning crying and laughing with my family all morning long. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

interesting links (except that the first one is a bit far from interesting)

this is why I can't agree with the large portion of my friends who have come to love country music

this is adorable

this is a wonderful sermon full of beautiful thoughts

and this is a wonderful post full of more beautiful thoughts

"And how many gods poured out their hearts to romance a world that's torn all apart?" ~Downhere, "How Many Kings"


Thursday, December 19, 2013

"At every stage of our Christian development and in every sphere of Christian discipleship, pride is the greatest enemy and humility our greatest friend." ~ John Stott 

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

my "baby" sister is growing up far too quickly

These pictures are a bit grainy, but here are a few pictures from Midget's Christmas concert :) 




Monday, December 16, 2013

"He has read our yellowed penciled pages, as well as our minds and hearts. He reads our written prayers on the backs of envelopes, on the margins of our Bibles, on the backs of weekly memo calendars or the unwritten whispers in the middle of the night." 

~Edith Schaeffer, The Tapestry


Sunday, December 15, 2013

"In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. . . . And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth. . . . For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace." ~John 1:1-3, 14, 16


Friday, December 13, 2013

"He makes me smile."

This is one of the things most necessary for a guy to be good boyfriend according to almost every survey I've read and almost every personal story I've heard. What makes you smile though is directly dependent upon what you value.

Does he make you smile by joking about other people?

Does he make you smile by talking about nonsensical things that let you forget about the stresses of life?

Does he make you smile by constantly and patiently directing your heart and thoughts to the perfect truth of the gospel?

The first example allows you to indulge in negative thoughts about other people.
The second example provides a temporary escape only to leave you with the same negative thoughts when you return to "harsh reality".

 Is either one really worth smiling about?

The third example though points you to the essence of your life and leads you into a deeper communion with your Savior.

You should ask yourself -- does this guy amuse you (and therefore appease shallow desires) or does he remind you of the joy that gives you life and meaning?

Let's be less concerned with smiling and more concerned with deeply understanding and relentlessly pursuing the truth of the gospel. Smiling will invariably follow.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Christmas in Erie

Yesterday, my roommates and I celebrated Christmas in our apartment :) Snow was falling and Christmas music was playing and we bought donuts from Tim Hortons :) It was quite lovely and a much needed break in the middle of a week full of studying for finals :)

Earlier in the week we spent an evening making paper snowflakes :)


The presents and "tree" had been sitting in the window for several days. It looked quite festive from outside :)





Now just one more final tomorrow morning and then I will be on my way home . . .

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

a letter without postmark

Dear Erie, 
why???


sincerely, 
a cold (and tired) college student who is ready to go home. 

note on life

You know your locker has been emptied when the floor by you desk looks like this:


Monday, December 9, 2013

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

note on life

When Kathryn and Rachel become overwhelmed with life, they play Set and sing the Wonder Pets theme song. That is all.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

"The salt of the earth does not mock rotting meat. 

Where it can, it saves and seasons. 

And where it can’t, it weeps. 

And the light of the world does not withdraw, 

saying 'good riddance' to godless darkness. 

It labors to illuminate, but not dominate.” 

~ John Piper


Sometimes I'm asked to pretend like I don't live in the 21st Century. I generally willingly comply.



photographer: Rodolfo Claros

Monday, November 25, 2013

Today is the birthday of this. . .

. . . adventurous. . . 

. . . loving . . .

. . . artistic . . .


 . . . gorgeous. . . 

. . . adorable . . .

. . . little girl that I'm so blessed to be able to call my sister :) 

I love you Midget :) :) :) . . . and miss you so very much. 
I can't wait to see you again soon :) 

Sunday, November 24, 2013

"And, 'You, Lord, laid the foundation of the earth in the beginning,
and the heavens are the work of your hands;
they will perish, but you remain;
they will all wear out like a garment,
like a robe you will roll them up,
like a garment they will be changed.
But you are the same,
and your years will have no end.'"
(Hebrews 1:10-12, ESV)

Friday, November 22, 2013

“But in reading great literature I become a thousand men and yet remain myself. Like the night sky in the Greek poem, I see with a myriad eyes, but it is still I who see. Here, as in worship, in love, in moral action, and in knowing, I transcend myself; and am never more myself than when I do." 
~C.S. Lewis, An Experiment in Criticism

Thursday, November 21, 2013

By The Fading Light, Fall 2013
choreography: Melissa Bobick
photo credit: Maggie Sullivan 

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

interesting links

inspiration and experience color your identity

adorable :)

totally unnecessary "sweat shine", but still a great way to demonstrate that "athletic build" means nothing (the pictures in the link display athletes with minimal clothing. If that makes you uncomfortable, please don't open the link)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

"curiouser and curiouser. . ."

This was brilliant!


wonderful choreography :) 
amazing scenery :) 
perfect score :) 
incredible use of technology without overshadowing the humanity of dance :)
genius costuming :) 
amusing references to past ballets :) 
in everything, excellent storytelling :) :) 

. . . yeah, I kind-of might have really liked it :P 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

a living prayer

"In this world I walk alone with no place to call my home
But there's one who holds my hand
The rugged road through barren lands
The way is dark, the road is steep
But He's become my eyes to see
The strength to climb, my griefs to bear
The Savior lives inside me there

In your love I find release
A haven from my unbelief
Take my life and let me be
A living prayer my God to thee . . ." 

~Alison Krauss and the Union Station 


Thursday, November 14, 2013

"When you don't get into an audition, you cry -- tears are fine. Then, you learn how to cry in the next scene." ~Chita Rivera*


*She came to Meryhurst!!! and gave a private interview with the dance and theater majors and then a public interview in the Mary D-Angelo theater :) I may or may not post quotes from her talks for the next few days :)

update on Gracie

Gracie made is safely through surgery and is recovering well :) Hopefully, she and her parents will be home in a few days :)

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

"Your muscles contain memories . . ." 


Can words ever fully express those memories?

Can words express contact with human beings?

Can words express the feeling of standing in a circle of people with linked hands as you lift up prayer?

Can words express the feeling of holding someone as they cry their heart out?

Can words express the feelings of walking though a neighborhood with your am wrapped around some else's arm?

Can words express being human?

 . . .As I think about these things, I am thinking in words. As I write about these things, I am writing in words. As you read these things, you are reading words. As you read these words, are you thinking of experiences of your own? Can you feel the memories in your muscles? Did you store the memory in words or do the words just trigger the memory?

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Gracie

Please be praying for Gracelynn. She is the daughter of friends of mine. She was born last week. Today she has to have heart surgery. Please be praying for own physical strength and well as spiritual and emotional strength for her parents. 



Tuesday, November 5, 2013


( . . . and will not load on my blog for some unknown reason so you'll just have to open the link.) 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

I stand amazed . . .

" . . . O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
And my song shall ever be:
O how marvelous! O how wonderful!
Is my Savior’s love for me! . . ."



Thursday, October 24, 2013

family portrait

I opened Netflix a few days ago and found this on the sign-in page. I think it might just be the most accurate portrait of my family that I've ever seen :)
 If it included Mama and Midge it would be perfect.


Monday, October 21, 2013

my morning

teacher: you will need to find time to get together with your discussion group outside of class.

the other groups: "Can we all meet at 2?", "Let's meet before dinner", etc.

my group:
voice major (who is in the theater performance this weekend): "I have rehearsal from 6-10."
hockey player: "I have practice from 2-4."
other dancer: "I have rehearsals from 4:15-6:30."

So . . . let's meet at the library at 10pm?

Sunday, October 20, 2013

". . . the earth is full of the steadfast love of the Lord." ~Psalm 33:5b



Saturday, October 19, 2013

"Nevertheless the determining impingement on most knowledge produced in the contemporary West (and here I speak mainly about the United States) is that it be nonpolitical, that is, scholarly, academic, impartial, above partisan or small-minded doctrinal belief. One can have no quarrel with such an ambition on theory, perhaps, but in practice the reality is much more problematic. No one has ever devised a method for detaching the scholar from the circumstances of life, from the fact of his involvement (conscious or unconscious) with a class, a set of beliefs, a social position, or from the mere activity of being a member of a society. These continue to bear on what he does professionally, even though naturally enough his research and fruits do attempt to reach a relative level of freedom from the inhibitions and restrictions of brute everyday reality. For there is such a thing as knowledge that is less, rather than more, partial to the individual (with his entangling and distracting life circumstances) who produces it. Yet this knowledge is not therefore automatically nonpolitical." ~Edward Said in his introduction to Orientalism, 1978

Friday, October 18, 2013

teddy bears are the bestest


While I would contend that no child is innocent, I still think this is adorable :)

. . . and I may still be carrying Woolf around most evenings even though I'm no longer at camp
. . . and I may have been working on my camp scrapbook this morning which made me miss camp . . . so I brought my teddy bear to the living room while I worked on my scrapbook :)
. . . and I may be the only college student who uses her day off to scrapbook with her teddy bear :)

Sunday, October 13, 2013

"Oh come, let us sing to the Lord; let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation! Let us come into his presence with thanksgiving; let us make a joyful noise to him with songs of praise! For the Lord is a great God, and great King above all gods. In his hands are the depths of the earth; the heights of the mountains are his also. The sea is his, for he made it, and his hands formed the dry land. Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker! For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand." ~Psalm 95:1-7a


Saturday, October 12, 2013

Friday, October 11, 2013

glimpse of the gospel

"Philosophers have tried to tell us that all life is a continuous flux--that nothing is permanent but change. But, somehow, the human soul continually reaches out for something permanent, something enduring. We crave solidarity and the eternal in the midst of the all the evidence that everything is elusive and impermanent." ~Ted Shawn

 

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

"Let the mind for an instant consider the history of the Redeemer's love, and a thousand enchanting acts of affection will suggest themselves

all of which have had for their design the weaving of the heart into Christ, and the intertwisting of the thoughts and emotions of the renewed soul with the mind of Jesus." 

~Charles Spurgeon


Tuesday, October 8, 2013

interesting links

presently planning a trip to see this sometime before July 13 :)

fascinating . . . and totally creepy :/

yummm (also, here are dairy-free alternatives to sweetened condensed milk)

true story ( . . . but still abiding by the premise that personal happiness is a valuable primary goal)

these articles are so worth your time . . . [I may have spent the last hour reading articles from this blog. I should probably get back to homework now. . . after I read one more post.]


Monday, October 7, 2013

where the eloquence is found

 Ballet is excessively eloquent movement defined in a efficient (and codified) means of verbal communication (i.e. beauty in movement, efficiency in thought).

Modern is efficient (and grounded) movement "defined" in excessively eloquent "streams of consciousness" form of verbal communication (i.e. beauty in thought, efficiency in movement).


* It should be noted that this is a current life observation that certainly cannot be turned into a universal rule (i.e. I am not trying to make a "hasty generalization". I am simply noticing a trend in the classes I am presenting taking).

Saturday, October 5, 2013

"I see the Dance being used as a means of communication between soul to soul--to express what is too deep, too fine for words."

 ~Ruth St. Denis 


Friday, October 4, 2013

note on life

Today in modern I learned that, if you can get past the gross factor, watching grubs is actually good for understanding "shape flow".

Thursday, October 3, 2013

"And suddenly Scheherazad is nowhere to be found
but the stories she unlocked go on and on" 
~excerpt from "So You Think You Know Scheherazad" by Mohja Kahf


far more true than I would like to admit


Wednesday, October 2, 2013

"Despite her hidden sorrow, she said smiling,
'The fact that stories repeat themselves is an indication of their truth, Your Majesty.'"
~Shahrzad in Arabian Nights and Days by Naguib Mahfouz


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

note on life

You know your roommate is thinking a little too far into the future when she says,

"One day we can write our memoirs. Yours will be called Ponderings from a Puritan Princess and mine will be called Confessions from a Catholic Countess.
We can sell them as a box set."



Monday, September 30, 2013

interesting links

In case you didn't already think ballet dancers were awesome, here is more proof.

My sister sent this to me . . . Where do I apply? :)

While looking up videos of Erica Cornejo, I found this one of her brother, Herman Cornejo . . . amazing.

"I’ve remembered about buttercups, stink bugs and the stars." (Despite the second to last paragraph, this article is worth reading.)

This is kind-of adorable :)

Breathe



Sunday, September 29, 2013

"It Is Well With My Soul" has been a favorite hymn of mine for quite a while. It became even more personally important this summer at camp. It became even more heart-wrenchingly beautiful this evening as I heard the story of the author

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

It is well (it is well),
with my soul (with my soul),
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.


It is well (it is well),
with my soul (with my soul),
It is well, it is well with my soul.

My sin, oh the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to His cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!

It is well (it is well),
with my soul (with my soul),
It is well, it is well with my soul.


For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:
If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.

It is well (it is well),
with my soul (with my soul),
It is well, it is well with my soul.


And Lord haste the day, when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.


It is well (it is well),
with my soul (with my soul),
It is well, it is well with my soul.


"The heavens declare the glory of God,
and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. . . .
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
be acceptable in your sight,
O Lord, my rock and my redeemer." 


~Psalm 19:1,14


Saturday, September 28, 2013

marvelous glass

"Notre Dame! The great cathedral of which France is justly proud was naturally the objective of one of my earliest artistic pilgrimages, I may say of the very earliest. The tall columns, whose shafts, composed of little assembled columns, rise clear to the vaults; the admirable proportions of the nave; the choir, the seats of old carved oak, the railings wrought of iron--this harmonious and magnificent pile impressed me deeply. But what enchanted me more than anything else was the marvelous glass of the lateral rose windows, and even more, perhaps, the rays of sunlight that vibrated in the church, in various directions, intensely coloured, as a result of having passed through these sumptuous windows. I quite forgot where I was. I took my handkerchief from my pocket, a white handkerchief, and I waved it in the beams of coloured light . . . ." ~Loie Fuller


How different it is to have personally been to place that you read about in an essay than to be seeing solely through the writer's eyes.


My trip to Europe seems a bit like a dream now, except the moments when I read of places I've seen, paths I've walked upon -- then, it suddenly seems much more real -- for a minute or two, at least. 

p.s. Just in case you were wondering, not even a minute after the events recorded in her quote, Loie Fuller was removed from the cathedral by a security guard. 

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

I unintentionally came across this picture today and almost started crying. It's definitely a missing-home-kind-of-day. 
Thank you Lord for a unbelievably caring and loving family :) 
I can't wait to see them all again :) 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

glimpse of the gospel

In my Middle Eastern Literature class, we talked about the differences between Disney's Aladdin and the original tale (at least as it was written down by Europeans). [Shocking assignment for an American class on Middle Eastern Literature, I know.]

One of the things we discussed is that Americans don't like boundlessness.

The writers of the film (among maaaaannnnyyyy other things) gave a boundary to Aladdin's wishes. Instead of having an unlimited number of wishes Aladdin is granted only 3 in the Disney version.

We don't like concepts we can't fully comprehend and we don't like power that we don't have some level of control over. (We also don't like characters without internal agency.)

But, God is boundless . . . and that is beautiful.

"‘Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.'" ~Jeremiah 32:17

"The God who made the world and everything in it, being Lord of heaven and earth, does not live in temples made by man, nor is he served by human hands, as though he needed anything, since he himself gives to all mankind life and breath and everything." ~Acts 17:24-25

"Before the mountains were brought forth, or ever you had formed the earth and the world, from everlasting to everlasting you are God." ~Psalm 90:2

"Thus says the Lord: 'Heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool; what is the house that you would build for me, and what is the place of my rest? All these things my hand has made, and so all these things came to be, declares the Lord.' " ~Isaiah 66:1-2

"And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together." ~ Colossians 1:17

"We all know that in the powerful emotions of joy, sorrow, horror or despair, the body expresses the emotion it has received from the mind." ~Loie Fuller


Saturday, September 21, 2013

honesty

The Blue Lake staff motto for summer 2013 was,
"Your talk talks and your walk walks, but your walk talks louder than your talk talks".

When I initially heard it, it seemed like a good quote to me - a little silly in presentation (somewhat Dr. Suess-ish), but valuable in intent.

I was thinking about again this afternoon though and it took on a lot more meaning.

We always have the option to present things in language -in our words- which end up being entirely hollow.

Our walk, our motion, our movement is unquestionably honest. 


"As a matter of fact, motion has been the starting point of all effort at self-expression, and it is faithful to nature. In experiencing one sensation we cannot express another by motions, even when we can do so in words." ~Loie Fuller


“. . . it seemed very personal, because it was contained in the bodies of the dancers, and the body is so revealing. When a dancer comes onstage, he is not just a blank slate that the choreographer has written on. Behind him he has all of the decisions he has made in life. He has already met a million forks in the road. Each time, he has chosen, and in what he is onstage you see the result of those choices. You are looking at the person he is, the person who, at this point, he cannot help but be. All of the experiences he has had as a child and as a teenager, all the images his body has accumulate, these come up as colors in the dancing giving it sparkle and complexity. They come out through the eyes, through the pores.  . . . all dancers are self-revealing, and this is true no matter what the style of dancing.  . . . Within a minute, you are receiving a personal message.” ~Mikhail Baryshnikov

Friday, September 20, 2013

"Holy God, in love, became 
Perfect Man to bear my blame 
On the cross He took my sin 
By His death I live again" 

Thursday, September 19, 2013

note on life

You know there is no sense of "normalcy" left in your relationship with your roommate when she looks at you and says the following in the same voice she would use to dramatically read a fortune cookie, 

"You appear to be a faun, but inside you have the temper of a lion". 


Monday, September 16, 2013

"It is interesting to note that modern dance began at the same time as silent movies--when people were becoming used to seeing expressive movement and gesture without the benefit of dialogue, and with one or more musicians playing background music." ~Charles H. Woodford 


Sunday, September 15, 2013

"Now may the God of peace who brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, the great shepherd of the sheep, by the blood of the eternal covenant, equip you with everything good that you may do his will,working in us that which is pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ,to whom be glory forever and ever. Amen." ~Hebrews 13:20-21


Saturday, September 14, 2013

glimpse of the gospel

"In the older civilizations the questions were of a religious kind, concerned mainly with life hereafter. This world and this life interested them much less. What they principally wanted to know was what the life hereafter was like and what they could do so that their journey to that other world might be a successful one." 
~The Study of Philosophy (p. 17), S. Morris Engel and Agelika Soldan 

Perhaps we've always understood that we were created for another world? 

“If I find in myself desires which nothing in this world can satisfy, the only logical explanation is that I was made for another world.” ~Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis



"He is jealous for me,
Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree,
Bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy.
When all of a sudden,
I am unaware of these afflictions eclipsed by glory,
And I realize just how beautiful You are,
And how great Your affections are for me. . . ." 

-How He Loves, David Crowder Band 


story of my life



Friday, September 13, 2013

a letter without postmark

Dear University Professor,

You cannot just change the pronunciation of the name of a pre-Socratic philosopher because you "have decided that your way is easier".

feeling quite distraught,

Rachel

p.s. If you say "good job" after each students speaks, there is really no need to say anything at all.

Monday, September 9, 2013

***general notice***

Apartment pictures shall be postponed until the wall decorations decide that they actually want to stay on the walls (i.e. until the humidity leaves). That is all.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

tragic tradition

this afternoon I went to see a film with my roommates,
and then walked back to my apartment . . .

. . . it was of those films that fills your head with thoughts* . . .

There is a patch of grass that wasn't trimmed, 
but taking root and gaining stability is more important than conformity 

The sun is shining and the wind is gently moving my skirt
Why must I walk into artificial light? the hallway looks so gloomy

I always think I want to be alone (too)
but then I never really do 

What do we gain in growing up? 
and, what do we lose in lack of companionship? 

*which makes me think of a quote by Tennessee Williams . . . .

"Men pity and love each other more deeply than they permit themselves to know. . . . So successfully have we disguised from ourselves the intensity of our own feelings, the sensibility of our own hearts, that plays in the tragic tradition have begun to seem untrue. For a couple of hours we may surrender ourselves to a world of fiercely illuminated values in conflict, but when the stage is covered and the auditorium lighted, almost immediately there is a recoil of disbelief. 'Well, well!' we say as we shuffle back up the aisle, while the play dwindles behind us with the sudden perspective of an early Chirico painting. " 


majesty

"O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.
When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him?
Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his feet,
all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.
Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!" 
~Psalm 8

". . . and all were astonished at the majesty of God." 
~Luke 9:43


Thank you Lord for your majesty 
and thank you Lord for the people you have put in my life that continue to direct me to your majesty :) 

Friday, September 6, 2013

I love dancing.

I missed it so very much.

It's wonderful to be back to taking ballet classes every day :) :) :)

Also, I got to wear pointe shoes today for the first time in 3 months.

I love pointe shoes.

Okay, I'll stop now.