So Thankful

I didn’t start out college with plans to continue on to a masters degree. But, I think observing my brilliant professors, being challenged by the reading I was doing, and learning how to research effectively really pushed me to the place where a Master of English was the natural next step. I’m extremely grateful for many of the details that God has worked out concerning this degree. 1) My district refunds $100 per credit hour.  2) Hays has the lowest tuition cost of all the State Universities in KS. So my cost is about $65 bucks per credit hour.  3) I found a summer program (difficult for any teacher to find, let alone English teachers!)  4) Hays is closer to home, which means I could leave town for the entire summer and get in quality family time!    5) This year, the 4-day school week has allowed me much-needed extra time to work on my papers.

I sent in my second paper this past Tuesday (the snow day helped a bit), and I drove to Hays today to return my students’ borrowed books for their term paper and to work on my own research. I found several good sources and organized my papers and files. Another paper will be finished before December is over with!  I love to look back on the way things happen in life when you get to clearly see where God was in all of it. He takes care of me more than I can even begin to realize!

On NPR tonight, Matt Damon did an interview for a movie he’s starring in about South Africa’s struggle to win the Rugby World Cup in 1995, amidst political struggle with SA’s first black President, Nelson Mandela, played by Morgan Freeman (LOVE HIM!). It’s called Invictus. I REALLY want to see it. Another one that looks good is Blind Side, starring Sandra Bullock. I heard the other day that in her research for the film, she met the first true Christian she has ever met–the lady she portrays in the film.

So, let’s put these on the queue Mom and Emily. Or, let’s just have a girls’ night out!! :)

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Globetrotting

My brother and sister-in-law have been in China for three months teaching English at a university in Baoding. They are so enjoying it! I didn’t doubt that they would. Those two have traveled to more countries in the past three years than most people travel to in their entire lives! And, each time they’ve gone somewhere, I’ve learned something new about a country, people group, religion, or culture.

I realize I have little grasp on what they have experienced in their travels (as I had difficulty putting my experiences in Brazil into words), but I’ve sure enjoyed learning from their experiences. It inspires me to travel abroad again, someday, maybe after I’ve paid off my college loans and have purchased a newer car. :) My older brother and I are going to plan a trip to see them in 2011. (I guess I better get a second job!) From hearing about the culture and seeing their videos, I can’t wait to explore there!

Every time I’ve traveled, I’ve been in awe about how many people there are on this planet. Coming from a small town magnifies this concept for me, I’m sure, but it truly is amazing. My sis said that her students think Boading is a small town with little to entertain them. However, the city and the area around it totals no less than 10 million people!

One of my grandparents’ friends is teaching in China, too. He told us that he lives in the 24th largest city in China, but if that city were actually in the US, it would be the 4th largest city. Incomprehensible!

Even more incomprehensible, though, is the fact that regardless of how many people there were, are, or will be, God created, knows, and loves EACH ONE of them! That is amazing.