Teaching to Learn and Learning to Teach


Friends, Friends, and more Friends

  • Friday afternoon: lunch with friends who greatly impacted my life and had definite roles and investments in God leading me to be an RD
  • Late Friday afternoon: coffee with a friend who has my old job
  • Friday evening chat with one of my old roommies. I never see them any more :(.
  • Saturday morning coffee with my dear friend , Jen Holmes.
  • Saturday late afternoon headed down to Disney Day with Summer for the best Disney trip ever! I only rode one ride, but it was sooooo good to hang with Sum and to see so many other friends who were there for Disney Day.
  • Saturday evening: briefly saw Laura and Adam for a minute. Thanks for the Torani syrup and the avocados :).
  • Sunday afternoon: Porto’s Cuban Bakery after church with all of my old roommates. Guess I can’t say I never see them anymore.
  • Sunday late afternoon: Talked with my dear former student, Anuja. So encouraging to hear her plans, dreams, and desires for college next year and for beyond college.
  • Sunday evening: Time with my ARAs. I love them :).

Does it come as a surprise to anyone right now that I despirately need to do homework?



Congratulations, Noelle and JP!

One of my dear, sweet RAs got engaged last weekend. I’ve known JP longer, because he was a summer intern in our office two years ago, but Noelle has become very dear to me this year. I’m rejoicing at this awesome pair becoming a permanent pair. They both love the Lord and want to please Him and I have no doubt that they will be able to do that together. At our leadership meeting this week in the dorm, we celebrated JP’s popping the question with pop, popcorn, popsicles, and pop’ems.



Funny Analogies for the English Teachers Out There
November 9, 2011, 7:11 am
Filed under: humor, Student Comments, Teaching

I hope you enjoy these funny analogies.



What’s new?

1. Items hung on my walls including the frames from the flea market. Cherilyn, you asked for pictures; here they are. The step stool with the suitcase on it is also “new” from the flea market.

2. Sweet Notes from Villains. Never got anything like this in my old job :).

3. Refreshment and rest looks like this:

4. My niece is still new in my mind and she’s most definitely blog worthy (at least in this doting aunt’s mind).

5. Sweazy won Gotcha! I don’t know how many played, but out of an enrollment of 1000 students, one of my girls got 120 cumulative kills. We had a Sweazy Alliance. Our motto was, “Don’t forsake the Alliance for cute boys.” I stayed in until Friday at which point I fell on my sword for the Sweazy Victory Chain. I had to stay in all week to protect a Sweazy friend who was below me, so I resorted to participating in all the safeties available except for Friday’s. Friday I was sick in bed, so I didn’t yell out “Ninja” at anyone dressed in black that might have tried to assassinate me :). Here are the other day’s safeties:

Monday – ride an imaginary horse
Tuesday – talk on a banana like a phone
Wednesday – in song narrate your day and what you are doing
Thursday – waddle like a penguin

I have never been so paranoid in my life. I heard helicopters everywhere, I had my banana at hand while shopping at Costco, I had full conversations with the banana to my face, I semi-waddled into a class off campus, I wouldn’t open my door when a student that wasn’t from Sweazy knocked. I made friends and watched the girls build relationships with one another and think through issues of life far beyond the game as a result of what the competition brought out both positive and negative in their hearts, relationships, and lives.

6. I was sick over the weekend, but am on the mend. It was a good time to reflect again on God’s kindness in making me stop, rest, and eat better. I’ve never eaten so much chicken soup or rehydrated with such mass quantities of Gatorade. It was also a humbling reminder that I’m not all that important. God is at work and He allows me to be a part of that, but you pull me out of the equation and He is still at work. I needed that reminder to not be overwhelmed with the needs, demands, and responsibilities before me. If you start to think of yourself too highly and try to compare the demands before you to “your personal resources” (I put that in quotes because a friend recently reminded me that my time, energy, strengths, giftedness, etc. are not really my resources.), you are going to get overwhelmed or feel that your resources are overwhelmed. When you see, however, God’s responsibility and care for all those things which is matched by his infinite wisdom and limitless resources, you are not overwhelmed but in awe and energized to move in in the strength He provides. He is matching your time and your giftedness as a miniscule part of His resources at His disposal to a specific situation in which He is working for believers good and His glory. It also helps you prioritize as you see how He is working apart from you and that everything doesn’t and shouldn’t involve you.

7. We’ve celebrated a birthday and had wing breakfasts at my place. Here’s a picture of my favorite RA Team celebrating Natalie’s birthday as well as a few other pics for your enjoyment. We had a lemon and turquoise theme. Lemons are Natalie’s favorite fruit and turquoise her favorite color.

8. Tonight we had an event called Sardines and Shakes or Murder and Malts. This is a traditional Sweazy event during which we turn off the power to the dorm and in the dark either play Sardines or dub someone “the murderer” and play an intense game of hide and seek. We wash all the fun down with shakes or malts afterwards :).

9. My favorite blogger on contemporary Christian issues and thought, who is the recent author of The Next Story: Life and Faith After the Digital Explosion, has been around campus speaking in chapel, classes, and participating in a Q&A. My personal thinking and campus conversations have been shaped by his messages. His first chapel message dealt with all speech flowing from the heart and what that reveals. He challenged us to consider how all of God’s commands for our speech apply to how we communicate through email, texts, Facebook, or blogging. His next message dealt with technology’s use as a part of the command to subdue and have dominion over the earth, but he went on to show how the fall affects that in a way where technology starts shaping and changing us to recreate us in its image or to run our lives. It also draws us in and promises us fulfillment and happiness and encourages us to rest and trust in it. We can be idolatrous about technology. He challenged us in the midst of a world of beeps and distractions to think about how to limit distractions and carve out time to think. Shallow thinking = shallow living and the many beeps in our life on our phones, dishwashers, coffee pots, microwaves, etc. are not discerning in when they beep. They just do their job, as they were designed to do, drawing us away from whatever we are doing at the moment. You can listen to those messages by clicking on the links above or by going to http://www2.masters.edu/pulpit/ . I hope to consider and blog more on this soon.

10. NANC – well NANC itself isn’t new, but the NANC Conference will be new for me this year. I’m very much looking forward to it.



So Sweet!

While I was still wide-eyed and new at my job, I wrote about working at the Happiest Place on Earth. Tomorrow I’m headed to the place most other individuals identify as “The Happiest Place on Earth.”

Today this girl, who is no longer wide-eyed or green, wants to make a case for why I do indeed work at the happiest place on earth. I get to work with people who love God and love people and I get to see practical expressions of that all the time. I get to see 17 to 23-year-olds who are exceedingly thoughtful and serve others. That’s supernatural. I think that most people who work in secular higher education institutions would agree it is NOT NATURAL.

Today I got a call from the mailroom that there were flowers there for me  to pick up. I was taken by surprise. I’ve gotten more flowers this semester than in the last 2 years. The most likely culprits, my bosses, had just given me a large gift the day before for Administrative Assistant’s Day (They never forget and I don’t even  remind them :) ). I went to the mailroom with a friend to get the roses and received a beautiful bouquet of white roses with  the following little note on lined paper:

The mail lady told me that the student had asked a few days ago if it would work to leave them in the mailroom. She was sworn to secrecy, but said they had been left by a very sweet young man. Then she said that she had probably said too much. She actually thought that had given it away :). That reminds me of my last post. How would you like for someone to think they had revealed your identity by saying the word “sweet”?

Happily I proclaim that that could be said of many students on our campus. Although  it can be said that it is rare for a college student to be so thoughtful of an office worker on campus, I see countless acts of kindness extended on our campus in ways that can only be explained by the work of Christ. I work at a place where love reigns because Jesus Christ is our Lord. What a cool experience!



Things to Avoid When Writing a College Paper (Part II)
December 14, 2009, 6:55 am
Filed under: Good Advice, Quirky, school days, Student Comments

1. Don’t use MacArthur et al. throughout the paper as the author’s name. Et al. means “and others.” So, if each chapter lists the author of the chapter, and you are only reporting on one section. Use that author’s name. My favorite usage was the possessive – “MacArthur et al.’s.”

2. Don’t use a country song as a counseling scenario in your paper (especially without citing the source and making it sound like a real situation you know of). You will be found out. That goes for songs in other genres too!

Part I



When Writing Your First College Paper…

These are also good tips for my former junior high students who are no longer in junior high.

To my former students: I know you will excel in college because you already know and apply many of the following tips:

  • TYPE your papers. No handwritten submissions unless the professor asks you to. (If you are in highschool and they don’t require this, do it anyway out of consideration for the person who has to grade it. In addition it will be great practice and improve your typing skills as long as you practice typing correctly.)
  • Use 12pt. Times New Roman font unless otherwise instructed. Teachers will notice if you make the font large in order to cover the fact that your paper is too short because you have no substance. If you make it too small and difficult to read, the grader will be grumpy. Do you really want a grumpy person grading your paper?
  • Use 1 inch margins, not 2. College professors know that trick.
  • Single space and indent long quotes.
  • YOU ABSOLUTELY MUST CITE YOUR QUOTES.
  • Staple your pages, not fold. Folding the corners is not equivalent to stapling.
  • Proofread, Proofread, Proofread (Repeated for emphasis!)
  • If you have trouble correcting your own errors, try reading your paper out loud. It often helps to catch things you otherwise would not.
  • Have someone else read your paper; they can point out the things that are clear in your thinking but don’t make sense to the rest of the world.
  • Use spell check.
  • Read the syllabus/ instructions carefully.
  • Don’t address the authors by their first name unless you know them personally and are on a first name basis.
  • Include an introduction. Don’t assume the reader knows which book and which author you are talking about in a book review.
  • Learn to vary your transitions, sentence structure, and wording so your reader doesn’t grow bored.
  • Use complete sentences.
  • The material should be organized in paragraph form.
  • Don’t include the following note in the middle of a paragraph to see if I am paying attention :

“Sup gorgeous, yea I mean you grading this paper.”