Thursday, October 8, 2009

My new found face saver



This is my new favorite product. POM juice is loaded with antioxidents and has made my skin look more clear then it ever has before. I haven't had a single blemish sine I started drinking it. Any pomagranite juice will do, but make sure to look for the ones that are made with pure pom juice because many claim to have pomagranite in it, but really it just has pom flavoring but is made with apple juice and high frutose corn syrups. This POM juice is my favorite brand ... you just need about half a bottle a day and it will not disappoint! :)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Earthquakes in Indonesia



Most of this video was shot in Padang, The West Sumatran Capitol, which is very near the epicenter of the quakes. Padang is home to about 1 million residents and it has been said by the city's officials that most of the city's population, an estimated 90 percent, are still buried underneath the rubble.

There are so many countries dealing with the aftermath of these earthquakes, tsunamis and typhoons right now that it makes my heart hurt for them. I pray for the people living through these natural disasters that God gives their hearts strength to get through such despair of loss of life, family and entire cities; and also that they would be able to rebuild and find joy and perseverance through the helping hands of those reaching out to them. I just pray that God would show these survivors love in their time of need.

Again, we are so fortunate to live in the country that we do.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Zimbabwe Schools



As I am watching this I can not imagine a). Having to share a text book with 13 students b). Not having enough pencils for the entire classroom (I just threw some out the other day when cleaning out my desk.... how wasteful am I) c). Not having a desk or chair d). Not having $24, $8 or even just $2 to attend school e). having to WALK MILES just to get to school f). paying for school with chickens or livestock because my family doesn't have the money..... the list goes on. Yet another example of just how fortunate we really are to live in America. Doesn't this make you want to somehow give or help?! It is my firm belief that education is a HUGE key component, quite possibly the single most important element in helping to pull people like those living in Zimbabwe out of SUCH poverty. It is crazy to think of what we consider "living in poverty" in the US to mean vs what "living in poverty" means in such struggling, war torn countries.

Philippines: Typhoon Ketsana

PHILIPPINES HAS HAD LOSS OF LIVES AND HOMES DUE TO KILLER TYPHOON KETSANA.  This poor woman lost her home and managed to salvage some of her clothing according to CNN.  She is seen here washing her clothing in water that is dirty and muddy.  How sad and tragic for these people.  I hope and pray things will have a speedy recovery.

A woman washes her clothes recovered from her house that was destroyed from the floods brought on by the continuous rains of Typhoon Ketsana, locally known as Ondoy, in the town of Pilila Rizal, east of Manila, September 28, 2009. The Philippines appealed for international aid to help tens of thousands marooned by flashfloods, and apologised for the delays in rescue efforts to avoid potential political fallout from the crisis. Apparently so far there are a reported 140 dead and over 300,000 people displaced from their homes. It is so sad when impoverished places like these face disaster when they already have so little to begin with. It makes me really appreciate everything that I have and every opportunity that I have been given the chance to pursue. I hope and pray that all of us are able to help those less fortunate than ourselves at some point in our lives, as we have all been undeservingly given SO MUCH MORE than most just by being born in the US.

Praying for the people in the Philippines and a speedy recovery.

Friday, September 25, 2009

TGIF

Dad's make everything in life better! Went to visit the padre today. I LOVE going home to Maple Valley and taking the longer drive to his house by going all the way through the neighborhood just so that I can pass all of the familiar houses. I love checking out the club house on my way up the hill and looking at all of the old man golfers attempting their shots on the huge hill that is the 18th hole. Dad fixed up my car (which was much needed), and I got to try out his latest snack fetish, which is blue cheese on pita chips with capers (those of you who know my dad know he is always down with a new food fad). After that, we hung out outside in the sunshine sitting in some beach chairs and chatting about life. :) I love going home and spending time with the pops in the house I grew up in. I am so blessed to have the family that I do. They are so fun and supportive and I LOVE spending time with them.

Now, it's off to Sunnyside for the weekend for the hot air balloon festival with the Balcom clan!

Guest Blogger: Kona

Todays ma droppeded me off at de doggie hotel. I be all alone wit out her for de fist time eva! I was vewy sad when mama had to weave, but I know she'll be back. Day say I get to go for a doggie walk in de nature on Saturday and take a good boy doogie bath on Sunday.... den mom will be back an come get me from dis place.... I hopes. :( Wish me luck and bwing me bones if you want. Puppy kisses

Kona 

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Mars Hill Favorites

While we are on the topic, here is probably one of my favorite sermons by Mark Driscoll given back in March during a series on trials. Really anyone can benefit from hearing his message here so take a quick look if you get time (you can fast forward through the first 5 or so minutes if you would like..... those are always dedicated to covering recent church events and stuff).


Ten Commandments: Mark Driscoll on Nightline

My pastor Mark Driscoll will appear on "Nightline" soon speaking to idolatry. Stay posted for the exact date he will be set to air. Mark will be speaking during the night of The 10 Commandments series dedicated to idolatry. He argues that in a consumer culture it is detrimental but also easy to fill the place of God with false idols. He even takes "Nightline" co-anchor Terry Moran on a drive in his jeep down to the heart of Seattle to spend the afternoon and witness first hand our cultures dedication to vices. Go Mark :) Check out the preview here:


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

What a great week!


Seattle always seems to really know how to make the most of it's numbered sunny days and as we enter Fall, it seems as though everyone is being extra sure to get outdoors even more than usual. Usually when I take Kona for a walk at Greenlake on a weekday morning there are the usual stroller brigade mothers being trailed by a few old men attempting to run whenever they think that they are being watched and who obviously have spent too much time in the sun without sunscreen in their younger years.... but this week it seems people have been literally skipping work to get outdoors as if at any moment the rain will begin and not stop again until next July. Business men are attempting to run the lake with their blue-tooths in (I like to think they are conducting phone conferences and pretending they are in office and not out of breath from jogging the lake). As for me, at Starbucks each morning, although the pumpkin spice latte is calling my name, I continue to order iced, grande, skinny, vanilla lattes and then drink them very slowly savoring each sip because you never know when this will be your last iced drink of the season.


Anyway, this weekend, joining the rest in taking full advantage of the nice weather, Adam and I decided to hike Rattle Snake Ridge again for a quick, pretty hike.... but this time we decided to see if Kona could make the hike with us. We packed his portable doggie dish and headed up hill. It was a beautiful day and I just so happened to take Friday off for a much needed 3 day weekend (a rarity for me), and because it was early Friday afternoon we had the peak almost to ourselves (it can get crowded on nice days). Kona made it up hill like a trooper and didn't even sit down and refuse to go any further like he sometimes does at Greenlake. I kept a close eye on him when we got to the top of the lookout though because he was wanting to explore... and being his protective mother I didn't want him to fall off the cliff as he would probably be inclined to do.... he is clumsy. We drove to and from Rattle Snake in Adam's jeep with the top off too.. so between the hike and Kona sticking his whole body out of the Jeep on the drive, needless to say, Kona was a.) filthy dirty and given a bath and b.) Pooped for days!



On Saturday was Ashley's bachelorette party and what a fun night that was! It is so nice to know such wonderful girls! Ash, Lin and I went and got our makeup done at the mall that morning and then went back to my house and got ready for the night. The girls all showed up and we ate dinner (sushi), did presents and dressed Ash up in boas and bachelorette gear and hopped in a limo for a night out in Seattle. How fun to be this age and live in such a big, fun city! We were able to get out and take pictures at Alki beach and could see the city all light up on the other side of the water, then check out Queen Anne's look out as well as a quick stop at the Space Needle (which by the way I climbed on the stair stepper at the gym yesterday.... not so bad lol... not as difficult as the Sears Tower). Then we went to Ozzy's and serenaded Ash with some Karaoke, Chopsticks dueling piano bar where they put her on the baby grand and made some boys in the audience since Top Gun's, "You've lost that loving feeling," and then out in Fremont for Oktoberfest. I love Seattle. We had a great time, followed by a girls slumber party. 

Sunday morning was a day of rest that was much needed after such a busy week/weekend. Cleaned up the house a bit from the party the night before and then headed to Mars Hill for children's ministry at the 5pm service. Getting to work with all the kids at the church has been such a joy in my life. I am loving the nursery too. I love babies and it gives me just the perfect amount of time to hold some babies and then give them back when the service is over before they poop or cry. It's nice to get to hold them and it's nice to give them back when I am done too lol. Usually after the 5pm service in the children's ministry I go to the 7pm church service, but this week I was going to have a slumber party at mom's house after so I was able to make it into the big service after all the babies had been returned just in time for the tail end of worship. Then jumped in the Civ and headed to mom's for tortilla soup (YUM), girl talk and some skinny cow ice cream. It is always SO nice to go home and have some "soul food" as I like to call it and relish in some snacks, wine, tv and motherly wisdom.


It's nights/weekends like these that I feel so blessed to have such amazing friends that are so much fun to be around, and to live in such an amazing city with so much to do and something exciting and new always around every corner.


Monday, September 14, 2009

Life in Seattle

video

Well this pretty much sums up my life at the moment. Moving to Seattle originally took a lot of getting used to, but now that I have been able to settle in for a few years, I am loving it. I am so blessed to have the life that I do. I have the best family, friends, boyfriend and puppy and could not be happier. I graduated from UW last year and this past year has been such a refreshing one. I have had to opportunity to take some beach vacations with family and friends (and we all know nothing makes me happier than that), work managing the tanning salons and making the DS videos, and have had lots of time to sit back and enjoy life in Seattle, something I seemed to miss out on a bit in the last year of college (although is was still fun) between studying, class and work. Who knew I liked to run, knit, take photos of Seattle skylines, try out every new restaurant, take mini road trips, fly kites, clam, go 4 wheeling and hike?! It's funny how you can lose sight of the hobbies you once enjoyed when you get too busy to entertain them! 

The past couple weeks I have been busy getting prepared to get back to school however. The time off has been so appreciated, but I am ready to hit the books once again. With the economy the way it is, I decided there is no time like the present to go back to school and get my masters in teaching. So, starting on September 29th I am enrolled to begin some prerequisite courses at North Seattle Community College and applications to UW and SU teaching schools are due October 1st for programs that begin in the Spring. Both schools have a one year intensive program for grad students seeking a Masters of Teaching, which will be perfect for me. In the mean time I have a few classes to take, a math test to pass so that I don't have to take a math class (pray for me), writing samples to do at both schools, and the West Tests to take on November 14th. So, lots to do and it's all in God's hands after that I suppose. 

Man this blogging stuff takes it out of you! That is all for now. Love you all lots!

Cass

Guest Blogger: Kona


My mommy and I are so excited to now have our own blog! We have both been vewy busy lately and would wov to share wif you what all we have been doin in Seattle latwey! We are wiving in the town house, and have a new roommate, Britters, who we just wov (acause she feeds me chicken and treats and takes me on walks sometimes so we can hangout and do doggie tings). Mommy has been working lots at the tanning place and has been taking me to the outdoor cafe' to study wif her lots cuz she is going back to school soon to get her masters in teaching. I have been a good boy she says and mommy says I am gettin fatter wif all my good boy doggie treats. This is all for now. Wov you alls! Have fun reading the tings my mommy wites on dis computer!

Puppy Wov!,

Konster