Wednesday, August 27, 2008

the semester of writing.

i've now officially had one of each class. i like most of them. i don't think i'll hate any of them. i may get sick of/overwhelmed with writing for the first time in my life, however. (scriptwriting, specialized reporting, freelance writing, and theater and the church. and i'm a co-editor for a section of our newspaper.) geeze. louise. i'm sure i'll survive and i'm sure i'll come out a better person and a better writer. i think i'm just in that first-day-syllabus state of shock.

as i was in our apartment kitchen this morning, pouring my coffee, the stove clock caught my eye. then i glanced at the microwave. according to both, i was already a minute late to my 8:30 scriptwriting class. and i hadn't even left my apartment. (great first impression, blake.) i was 5 minutes late to class, which i didn't think much of until the professor reached that part of the syllabus. he explained that tardiness was just "not cool" and how we're upperclassmen and should know better. ouch. so of course, i felt the need to apologize afterwards. as people were leaving, i walked to the front of class. "um," i started. "i... just wanted to say i'm really sorry for being late this morning. i have a chronic problem with lateness. it's no excuse, i know, but i'll work on it. and i'm sorry." he laughed, then asked if there was any problem he should know about that he could help accommodate for. "oh, no..." i said, "it's just me not being a morning person and not leaving soon enough. it's stupid and really not an excuse." he laughed and said he married a woman who has been late her whole life. "this is good to know, though," he said. he motioned toward my coffee mug. "i'll tell you what. if you decide to be late someday, just pour me an extra cup of coffee before you leave." um... deal.

it would seem i have some new cool professors this semester.

another cool professor is my freelance writing teacher in ft. wayne. it's a heck of a drive to get to the ft. wayne campus (1 hour there, 1 hour back), but after my first class on tuesday night, i'm thinking it will be worth it. he's intense, and extremely challenging, no doubt, but it's going to be so good for me, and so worth it. and he's unbelievably experienced, having written for magazines like TIME... and he's written books, too. (ok, those are lame credentials, but he is amazing! i just can't remember specifics.) anyway. we don't leave his class without being published, he said. that's exciting.

the echo is going quite well. i enjoy our section. this week, we're highlighting all the new things on campus, and one of my stories is on president habecker and mary lou's new SEGWAYS. i'm not kidding. if i get my way, we'll have pictures of president habecker and gob bluthe from arrested development on their segways, side by side. we'll see.

ok. this writer is hitting the hay. but before i do, i will say this... in regards to this crazy semester of writing. to quote sir kanye: "n-n-now that that don't kill me can only make me stronger." word.

Friday, August 22, 2008

returning thoughts.

summer didn't seem short until i arrived at taylor. as i turned left onto the loop, and saw the back of grace olson hall, it was like deja vu - floods of memories and emotions. it felt like i just packed my little red honda up a couple weeks ago, instead of three whole months ago. the feeling was vivid. time flies, no?

life is so familiar here. it is home. i don't mean that in a cute-sy way. i love st. louis, but my heart is here. i don't know if it's possible to adequately explain why i love this place so much. i mean, words come to mind... words like: cornfields, insane traditions, dear friends, paynes coffeeshop, wonderful/intentional/crazy community, the best professors in the world (i realize i am completely biased), handy andy, the student union, our beautiful campus, backroads, chapel (i can't wait), the way God works... you know i can go on... the joy it brings my heart to be with my friends really cannot be expressed. it's a huge family here. quirky brothers and dear sisters. sweet reunions.

right now, i'm a bit overwhelmed by God's goodness. i had a good phone conversation with my dear friend sarah on the way up to taylor. we both had a bit of a rough year last year, for some different reasons and for some of the same. but we're neighbors now. we live across the hall from each other in our brand new, BEAUTIFUL apartments. and we both had refreshing summers full of God's goodness and beauty. (granted, she was in IRELAND for half of it... but... my summer was still good. despite that.) i guess you could say we're kind of excited for this year...

i adore living off campus, by the way. if last year was a year of growth for me, i'm interested/STOKED to see what this year will end up being. i've already felt blessed in the two days i've been here. thanks, God. you are good.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

got baaaptized!

i just got home from my sweet swimming pool baptism! (literally. my hair is still drying.) but yeah... it was really great. since some of you couldn't be there, i'll let you know what went down... (and thanks, by the way, for being excited for me. i may have the best friends in the world? just throwing that out there. but really, your excitement means a lot. and this baptism meant a lot to me. it was that next step for me, you know?)

so i shared my "story," hitting on the spiritual highlights, from that sunday school classroom at age 4, to my missions trip to russia at age 16, to taylor, to a semester in ireland... there was so much more i wanted to share, but felt like i'd hog too much time, so i left it at those "highlights." then when i actually got in the pool (it was cold, and deeper than i anticipated when i hopped in), my pastor said some words, then "dunked" me (is there appropriate baptism terminology for that?)... and while i was under, i don't know what happened, but i started choking under water. then i came up and gasped for air and started laughing. way to go, blake. way to go. it was supposed to be this meaningful moment... which it was... but then i just had to add my little touch to things. oh gosh.

but it was great. and i love the timing... it's a good way to go into my senior year. speaking of which. i leave on tuesday. and i haven't packed a thing. ooops. better get on that. (i am the world's worst packer. i leave it all until the last minute because i hate it so much... ahh. you'd think after 3 years, i'd be a pro...)

Friday, August 15, 2008

sweet caroline.

there are few things or people in life that make me laugh more than my youngest cousin, caroline. she is four. and a fireball. and entertainment for anyone whose path she crosses. and i adore being big cousin "blakers" to her. when she comes over, we watch "disney princess movies," eat popsickles, and play with the dog. sometimes, i let her hold and listen to my ipod, which in her mind, is the coolest, most expensive item ever made. but our favorite thing to do is play "beauty parlor" in my room. it's the best.

caroline came over last week for an afternoon. i had some makeup samples that came in the mail. enough said?


this is her "holding still" face. please notice the one green eye and one purple eye. it's because she wanted "one of each." and notice the lipstick. she did it all by herself.

"caroline, pose like a model for me!"

yeah. i freakin love this kid.

Monday, August 11, 2008

pool party?

soo... i'm getting baptized!

the story behind it is long, because it's been several years "in the making." i've wanted to be baptized for awhile, but just never felt a peace about it. until now. God's been doing some big stuff in my heart this summer, so when the doors opened for this to happen before i head back to school, it was like "YES! DOIN' IT!"

our church is pretty big, but the service my family goes to (quest) is smaller, so we're doing the baptism off-site. in a swimming pool. (i LOVE that.)

it's a big step, so i figured it was blog-worthy. it's next sunday, so i'm sure i'll have more thoughts later...

ps. on a completely unrelated note, why do mondays always suck? i mean, always... right down to the fact that my morning coffee was watery and since i was rushing out the door on the way to work (nothing's changed), i was forced to drink it. unbelievable.