Yes, it’s official. As of 10:21pm on October 12, I am now 24. Yes, it hasn’t happened in California yet. Am I still considered 24?
Wow, 24. Think about that.
In these years, I’ve had 18 years of education, I’ve flown, sailed, walked, and road-tripped around the world. I’ve lived in three countries including 3 Californian cities. I’ve played, acted, laughed, loved, cried, sang, been depressed, had anxiety and danced every year. I’ve made friends, lost some, grown in faith and had “dry-spells”. I’ve sinned, repented, grown as a human and flourished as a young woman.
And all through these stages, I’ve had a family who has supported me, friends who have walked with me, teachers who were patient with me, doctors who have cared for me, a God who has loved me and an independence that has served me well.
So, thank you.
Continue reading “A New Birth Year Day 1: Say “Hello” to 24.” →
Those contemplative moments are gifts from the Lord above, not because they are rare, but because they are numerous. We simply have to be quiet and still enough to recognize them.
Since I’ve been here, I’ve done a lot of teaching. A lot of reading. Planning. A lot of walking. Running. Sitting. Listening.
There are also things I haven’t done.
As I see my students’ creativity growing, I see my own creative outlets being put on the back burner. I’m not certain as to why this happens.
Continue reading “Sunsets and Side Streets” →
Illness helps you appreciate those around you. It reminds you to rely on God for strength. And it warns you when your bag is too heavy.
My health has been a quirky character in the soap opera that is my life.
He is the emotional best friend who fights with me as soon as I make a decision that he deems silly.
What decision did he deem silly this time? Let me tell you.
Continue reading “Health is a blessing but illness is not a curse” →
When I read, I think about the present.
Where I sit.
What I feel.
Who I am.
When I read, I think about the past.
Where I was when I read it last.
How I felt the last time I read it.
Who I was all those days ago.
When I read, I think about the future.
Where will I be the next time I read it?
Will I feel differently?
Who will I be?
Katharyn Stong 9.1.16
Continue reading “When I Read” →
Only for kindergartners? I think not.
It’s time to share some pictures and sound bites!
All from the iPhone 5.
Let’s face it: I don’t have LTE here but it’s been a blessing in disguise. Here is why: I am not using my phone as an excuse when I don’t have anything in my hands, when I want to avoid a social situation or am bored. I find myself relying on my phone less and less. But when I do take my phone out to capture a moment with my camera, I always capture something special.
These four pictures were taken a couple of Saturdays back.
Grace, age seven, hangs out on property while her mom works at our apartment and dad works at the school. We went fishing at the Bethel pond that particular day. We also put flowers in our hair, played cards and colored.
One Girl, One Dream
Flower in the Hair
It’s All About Perspective
Hanging with a Seven Year Old on a Saturday
These next pictures were taken for my Instagram, let’s be honest.
Continue reading “Show and Tell” →
Sometimes its okay to be sick, watch Gilmore Girls while eating oranges, and visit the ocean to catch a breeze.
Hi, again. I usually wouldn’t be writing so frequently but this week has been unusual. I believe this is the first time, in a long time, where I have been sick for this long from bugs and viruses. I’ve been in bed this week and thinking a lot.
Since I have been here, I have had the flu, a bad reaction to gluten, dizzy spells and a bad cough.
I’ve had anxiety weeks and migraine months, but the last time I remember this happening was Swine Flu 2010. In hind sight, I’m used to being this sick, but usually I feel more in control. This time, I don’t.
I’m in my seventh week here and I can feel it.
Continue reading “Gilmore Girls and the ocean breeze” →
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes, courage is the little voice at the end of the day that says, ‘I’ll try again tomorrow’.”
That’s the theme of the week.
I have noticed that my anxiety can rise and fall very quickly. I’ve noticed that one second I’ll be very confident in my abilities to teach, live alone and/or take care of myself and the next second, I’m an electric ball of anxiety who is only being held together by my skin. The only thing that is getting me through the anxiety attacks is the knowledge that “anxiety is not forever.” Regardless if it feels like it will last forever (which is what makes an anxiety attack so excruciating), in reality…as quickly as it came, it will leave. So may the Lord keep that in my head this week!
And another theme:
Continue reading “Courage Doesn’t Always Roar” →
…don’t make gluten lemonade.
That wouldn’t taste too great.
Why am I bringing up gluten??? Great question! My stomach is asking the same thing.
If you know me at all, you know my body rejects anything with wheat or lactose in it. I’m not a happy camper when I accidentally eat it.
I ate out with some teacher friends on Sunday night and wasn’t as careful as I should have been. Let me note that my reaction was no one’s particular fault.
Want to know the advantage of being in bed for two days???
Continue reading “when life hands you gluten…” →
I am sad. Hearing about the pain that goes on in the world, experiencing difficult emotions and having to explain it to my students on Monday makes me sad. They deserve to know how to process grief in a Jesus-honoring way, but it pains me that they have already experienced grief to such a high degree. Also keep in mind that these young adults were barely teenagers when Typhoon Yolanda hit and some lost everything. Think about that…losing every earthly possession you have and still surviving. Although it has been 3 years (2013) since the storm and I am seeing their process years after, it still affects everyone who was here. I am honored that they allow me to experience those experiences with them.
Continue reading “in the midst of grief, we must grieve.” →