Thursday, March 31, 2005

beautiful, beautiful weather

Well I don't know about the rest of you all, but Indy has had spectacular weather these past few days. Temperatures in the high 60's, slight breezes and lots of sun. This week has gone by quickly, leaving me surprised to realize that I have only 2 weeks of internship left! While I am not chomping at the bit to be done, I think I will be quite ready to return to Goshen when that time rolls around. Life here at Peace House has been quiet, probably due in part to the fact that Miriam is gone all of this week and was gone all last weekend. It has also been nice to have a bit more of a relaxed week, J's class was canceled this week due to him being on Spring break and I didn't work at the State Museum for the same reason. However I did fill some of my time with helping out at the front desk at the Peace House Office because DeeDee was also on vacation. But this week wasn't all fun and games I also completed my 5 pager on Gloria Steinem leaving only the creative project and the big 12er on minimum wage. Last night my housemates let me watch Alias even though they really wanted to watch the USA/Guatemala World Cup qualifier game. I am really glad they did, because it was a great episode, all about Marshall. Today in a flurry of last minute emails, faxes and mailings, I finally got my application for the MMA scholarship in. I think I probably took a few years of Dad's life with all this deadline shenanigans. But hey, hopefully it will give me some money for next year.

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

50 random facts about me

1. I am only doing this because I am bored and haven't posted in a while 2. I like crosswords 3. I am pretty bad at crosswords 4. I currently have a really annoying hole in my sock 5. I have two brothers, an older and a younger and I like to brag about them a lot 6. I have visited 11 countries and 4 continents 7. I love to watch movie previews 8. While I really love to cook/bake I am not extremely good at it 9. I enjoy the ole sewing project from time to time 10. I tend to pick my nose a lot 11. The most beautiful place I have seen in my life up to this point would be a tie between the Mourn mountains in N. Ireland and the beach on Prince Edward Island, Canada 12. I am naturally lazy 13. I try to hide it well 14. Reading is addictive to me and I will often stay up late just to finish a book 15. I like to ride public buses 15. My favorite season is autumn 16. When I was younger I actually convinced myself that Sherlock Holmes was a real person after reading The Beekeeper's Apprentice by Laurie R. King 17. I have seen each of the Lord of the Rings movies (and Titanic) 3 times each in movie theaters 18. Lily of the Valley are probably my favorite flower 19. My oldest doll and most favorite was named the super creative "Babes" 20. I love cats and dogs about equally, but am more allergic to dogs 21. One of my life long dreams is to swim with dolphins 22. I would like to believe in telepathy 23. I am very cynical 24. Feeling needed is really important to me 25. I tend to trust people easily 26. I like more attention than I let on 27. At my worst I am passive-aggressive, at my best I am sincere and direct 28. My older brother and I fought like cats and dogs until my freshman year of high school 29. I watch more TV than the rest of my immediate family 30. I watch less TV than the average american 31. I enjoy foreign films, except when I am tired and don't want to read subtitles 32. I have yet to have a proper boyfriend and my first kiss was only a peck 33. I love the afternoon sun 34. I have lived on the fourth floors of all three underclassmen dorms at Goshen College 35. I am a history major 36. My mom grew up in a family of 11 children, therefore I have 36 first cousins on that side 37. I value family and friends higher than most other values in life 38. My family used to, and sometimes still does, call ourselves the Nerd Herd 39. I have read the Lord of the Rings books over 5 times each 40. I love the special features on DVDs 41. I have had several experiences with getting hit on by middle aged men in foreign countries 42. I want to travel a lot out of college and perhaps live abroad for a few years 43. I am a natural blonde, however I was born with copper red curls 44. I will never be skinny 45. I participated in one season each of cross-country and volleyball in high school 46. My longest non-family friendship that I still have is with Becca 47. When I was younger I slept like a frog with my legs pulled up underneath me and I sometimes snored 48. I like elaborate and odd earrings (even before the current vintage trends) 49. I like Goodwill shopping 50. I was baptized during the Advent after Sept. 11, 2001

Saturday, March 26, 2005

okay here's the dream/plan folks

Wow I am being super inspired by this site that chronicles Eric Kennel and David Landis' one year journey around the world. Eric's dad is a cousin to my dad and so we are related somehow and his younger sister Carmen was a good friend of mine when we were little. Anyways they started out in Eastern PA and hitchhiked/backpacked their way south to Mexico and then down through South America before flying to the Middle East (their current location). They then plan on continuing around the Mediterranean by sailboat and then heading north into Eastern Europe for a bike tour. Come mid summer they will fly to southern Asia and do some more hiking around before a possible flight over to Australia to wrap up their year long world tour. Their trip just sounds so completely amazing! I don't know if I could pull of a year long trip anytime soon, but here's my idea for a nice 4 month one. Start by flying east to Dublin where I would do a driving tour of Ireland for around 2 weeks, visiting northern Ireland and my friends there, while also seeing more of Ireland, then off to London England, where if the timing was right I could visit with Tim and Charletta for a little while, then head out on a backpacking tour of England for around 2 weeks. Then I would cross the channel and head to France, traveling mainly by trains and doing the hostel thing taking around 3 weeks to travel up into Germany through the Alsace region and then back down south to Southern France and Italy. Visit Rome and such before catching a ferry of some kind over to Greece and then to Turkey. Then I would head south again to Cyprus and hopefully catch some kind of boat to Lebanon and then south to Israel. Here I would be joined by my Dad and Mom and we would travel around to Hebron and so forth seeing all the different places that my Dad saw when he lived there for 2 years. So the break down of my dream trip would be 2 months in Western Europe, followed by a month of traveling around the Mediterranean and a month in Israel/Hebron. Estimated time of trip would be after finishing a year of Americorps so around the spring 2007. So who's up for traveling with me?

Thursday, March 24, 2005

finally she runs

Spurred by my discovery that the larger pants in my closet are fitting snugger I finally motivated myself enough to go on a jog/speed walk. So I dug out my workout clothes and went for a jog along the Monan Trail, which cuts north from 16th St. just east of College. Although this afternoon was sparkling blue and sun, by the time I headed out Indy's clouds had taken back over. Overall the jog was a success it reminded me of the season I ran of cross-country in high school, ie. not very fast, but steady and lots of mantras such as "I love hills", "feel no pain", and "burn that fat". I managed to run for around 3/4 of the time, and speed walk the rest and I kept my heart rate above 180 for much of the time (which considering the speed I was going is a good indication of how much room I have for improvement). So while I am sure I will feel it in the morning, I am currently enjoying the high that these exercise endorphins are giving me. In other news I spent much of last evening sewing Anna's dress. This was both my first time using interfacing and lining, while time consuming I think it is turning out pretty good. I put the zipper in late last night, however it is one of those tricky invisible ones, so I may have to rip it out and put it in again. But other than that I just have to hem it. Once it is done I'll have Anna model it and try to post a picture. It is definitely one of the more difficult pieces I have attempted and also one of the first ones I have done without any advice and/or help from my mum. Today was also a really good internship day. I was at State Museum and I felt really productive. In the morning I worked on some odds and ends with KT and then starting working on my brochure for my portfolio project. For lunch, KT took me out to the cafe in the museum and then we walked over to the Indiana State Library (one thing to note would be that onion rings usually end up being quite sickening after the first few). There we did some microfilm research and I looked up random things of interest. All in all a really good day. Next week KT is on vacation, so while I will be doing my usual hours at Horizon House, I'll be helping out in the Peace House Office. Which is great because they pay 8 dollars an hour! and I can really use the extra money. This weekend, I am hoping to finally get to the Georgia O'Keefe exhibit at the Eitlejorg and then on Saturday evening I'll be heading up to Goshen with Anna to spend Easter with the family.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

baking, baking gotta love the baking

Last night I finally gave into my craving for cinnamon rolls and baked some. Here is my post about it on Rumbly Tumbly

Sunday, March 20, 2005

not watching Pulp Fiction

The other peacers are watching it in the other room and I tried to watch it for the second time, but I just couldn't. The first time I only got to the beginning scene where the two hitmen kill all the boys who crossed their boss. This time I got to the boxer scene and if the sounds coming from the living room are any indication I am glad I am still not watching it. I mean I really would like to see the movie because I have heard so much about it, but I just really can't handle extreme violence. I have actually made my way through both Kill Bill's but that was with a lot of eyes shut and watching through my hands. Yet in all honesty I don't really mind being this sensitive to violence, I mean violence isn't something that we should be able to just sit and watch with no reaction. Even when faked on television or in the movies it represents a real part of life that we should never get used too.

a little late celebration of St. Paddy's

Your Irish Name Is...
Áine O'Neill

Peace House Letter #4

Dear friends and family, After being inspired by my Dad's weekly email and an update from David, I decided that it was indeed time to finally send another mass email. I have fallen out of the habit of it this semester because I have been blogging instead of emailing as much. So here it is an update on the last month or so of my life. This past week has gone well for me, we had a few days that were particularly spring like which was lovely. I have also been learning the ropes at Horizon House, which is my supplemental internship that I picked up. I am continuing at Indiana State Museum but just reducing hours so that I could find another internship that offered more direct peace and justice connections and experiences. Horizon House is a homeless day center that is open during the hours that most shelters are closed. It offers services such as laundry, showers, phones, storage, case managers, and a place to rest and hang out that is off the streets. The majority of its clients are single men of whom a high percentage are veterans (it is interesting to think what this says about how the army has supported its own troops). I work mainly at the front desk, checking people in, answering the phone, making appointments, etc. This has really been a nice addition to my more academia based internship at the State Museum. I have also helped out a little in employment and through this and issues from class have really began to think about the difficulties of living on minimum wage jobs. Another nice aspect of Horizon house is that is about a half an hour walk from peace house, so in nice weather it makes for a good chance to se the city. This weekend we had a group of Manchester students staying at our house while they were attending the Midwest Peace Summit. They are a good group and it has been nice to have the company. We also hosted an Earlham student who is hoping to come here for the summer term, she was on her way home for their spring break. She was quite nice and I enjoyed showing her around a bit. Speaking of spring break, for our "spring" break (back during the first week of march), our house went camping in Louisiana at a state park around an hour north of New Orleans. It was a fun, challenging time that grows more fond in memory then it probably was during the time. This being mainly due to our forgetting the fact that just because it is spring break does not mean that it is actually spring. So while we enjoyed sightseeing in New Orleans in 60 degree weather, we all shivered our way through the upper 30's nights. For a more detailed account check out: Life here at peace house is going well, we have moved beyond the superficial getting along to the fun place of actually interacting at levels that while sometimes involve conflict also seem more likely to produce lasting friendships. This afternoon is our open house from 3-5pm. So if any of you goshenites leave soon you could make it :) We would love to have some of you all. Last night Samuka, David and I played pool for a few hours. Which was a first in a while mainly due to the fact that we could rarely see the surface of the pool table. Anna is in Ohio for the weekend, so we have been missing her, but she returns this afternoon. Currently we are in the midst of a spring cleaning rampage due in part to the soon to occur open house. I also went grocery shopping last night to the kroger a few blocks north of here and discovered how much it makes a difference when you have to carry the bags home using only your own arms and legs. I definitely woke up sore this morning. Well that's about it for this update and I would love to hear from you all about your lives and how your semesters are going.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

spring has past and I think we missed summer

So yesterday, spring came to Indy. It was gorgeous, almost 60 degrees, sun shining, birds chirping. I walked both to and from Horizon House for my internship and it was a great walk, perfect for jeans and a long-sleeve shirt. But this morning it has changed to a nice rainy fall morning. Crisp and wet with some heavy rain has left me wondering, did I miss summer? Anyways this week has gone by quite well actually. Miriam finally returned on Tuesday after attending a funeral in Phily. I helped out answering phones in the Peace House Offices on Thursday in order to earn a little extra cash. Then in the evening I finally made pineapple upside down cake for Miriam and it turned out good, although it did confirm my theory that I don't like cooked or baked pineapple. Friday I went to Horizon House for half a day and the front desk was not as well staffed so it was a little busier than usual. Upon arriving home I discovered David cleaning the rather dirty kitchen and so Samuka and I joined in and vacuumed the rest of the house. There is nothing like a beautiful day to inspire thorough spring cleaning. I also did my laundry which was rather desperately needed. Then in the evening we had a prospective from Earlham visit and so Ruth took her, Samuka and I (Miriam and David were at work and Anna is in Ohio for the weekend) to Bazbos's Pizza which is really the best pizza ever. We had one half pizza with spinach, artichoke hearts, other veggies and ricotta cheese in it and the other half had pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, shrimp and olives on it. Then after arriving home a group of around 8 students and a prof from Manchester came. They are attending the peace conference at IUPUI this weekend and needed a place to stay. So all in all we have a full house this weekend.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

in another snipet from yesterday

While walking to catch my connecting bus home from work yesterday, man came up beside me and asked: "Can I ask you a question?" "Sure" "Now you are an attractive woman, would you be interested in going out with me for dinner or lunch sometime?" ... Now this pretty much flabbergasted me, not used to being asked out on the streets I didn't really have an appropriate response. "Ummm, I am sorry, but I think not this time." "So maybe another time? I have off work on Saturdays and Sundays" "While it was lovely of you to ask, I am going to have to say no" "Okay, well it is a beautiful day out, isn't it" "yes, yes it is" It should also be said that this man was not what you would call "close to my age", while not old enough to be my father, he was definitely older. Thus fulfilling what the pattern set in previous encounters, where I am found most attractive to middle aged men of questionable status in life. Maybe this is a sign from God that I am indeed meant to date only older middle aged men, maybe next time I should say yes?

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

wow, that sounds healthy

Today my co-worker informed me: "I haven't eaten any food for the past two weeks, except almonds" "pardon me, I am sorry I think I heard you say you hadn't eaten in two weeks" "yeah no food for two weeks, you know now I don't even feel hungry. I've actually lost 10 lbs already and the other day at the picnic all I had was a small side salad" "well I am glad to hear you ate something that wasn't a nut, but may I ask why you are doing this?" "I just needed to lose some weight" "gee don't you feel exhausted at all considering the damage you are doing your body?" "oh not really, don't worry, I take diet pills too" ummm is any one else worried about the standard of health in this country?

Wasting Time by Jack Johnson

This weekend was a blast! I got to see my Dad and younger brother (who now has dreads!) and of course many of my good friends. There really is nothing like returning after an absence to make one feel loved and appreciated. I also saw the opening nights of Goshen High School's Peter Pan and Goshen College's Die Fledermaus both of which were well done and enjoyable although not to full of substance. But mainly it was fun to see people I know singing their hearts out and doing a pretty darn good job. Kudos especially for Steph and her amazing blue dress! Friday night I spent hanging out with my girl friends and catching up. It was especially great staying up late with Meryl and Libby just chatting. I really do miss the easy intimate conversations that I seem to have whenever I return to Goshen. Saturday I spent most of the time at home working on an art project with Jess and baking things for dinner that night when I had Anna, Samuka, Becca and Jess over for dinner with my Dad and I. As for the art project it involved plaster casts and reflections on the feminine divine and it would be definitely be up there on coolest and oddest experiences in my life so far. Then it was off to the opera followed up by a brief appearance at Rachel and Adam's joint birthday party at Rubber, which I should say was hugely packed and while not as bad as I thought it might be, was a pretty decent time. On Sunday morning I headed off to Assembly for church and a potluck meal (what luck!). Tara came with me and the service went well as always and I got to see the good ole' Assembly people. Then during second hour, Becca and Tara and I went and sat on the couch and Becca and I got a chance to catch up on life, classes, etc. Then we were joined by Meryl and ended up having interesting conversations about food and its impact on health and our lives in general over lunch. Monday marked a return to the norm of internship and class. Both of which went well, and I have a new project for my internship which will mean creating a brochure that follows the steps a Museum exhibit takes during its production. Today was spent at H House from 8 to 4, which meant that I got up at the unheard of hour of 6:40am. While painful, it did mean that I was able to get home an hour early and start working on my 5 page paper that is due tomorrow morning. I also successfully navigated two different bus routes to get to work and once again really enjoyed my time at H House. The people are really friendly and the work is always changing and interesting, but then this could just be the honeymoon stage.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Listening to a really good boys choir (Anna would be jealous)

Vois sur ton chemin by Bruno Coulais from Les Choirstes Although all she would have to do to listen too is click on it in iTunes. Anyways its friday morning, which I would have to say is my favorite morning of the week, not quite Saturday, but clearly no longer a part of the week, it hovers in between. And today is great because I am going to Goshen for the weekend, which means seeing family and friends which is pretty high up my list of things I love to do. There is actually snow lying on the ground this morning and yesterday I walked home from the State Museum as it halfheartedly tried to fall from the sky. Speaking of which, yesterday was a good internship day. I worked on the jeopardy questions and talked with Kisha and Traci about various aspects of collections, I got more excited about the Lord of the Rings exhibit coming in the fall, and I also ate in the museum cafeteria for the first time and for only 5.12 I got a tuna melt, onion rings, and a salad. Yay for volunteer discounts! But speaking of money, I am really poor. I literally have 4 pennies in my wallet, but hey as long as I keep thinking I am poor and don't spend any of money out of my checking account I should be okay. I am being really random this morning, but hey its my blog I can do that if I want. Well I really need to go take a shower and pack and eat some lunch, so tata for now.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

baking spree ... run for your lives

So I've been enjoying the baking a lot these past three days, probably in compensation for the week without a kitchen. So far I have made the following: chili, tuna casserole, baked oatmeal, no-bake chocolate cookies, and hot fudge sundae cake. I think this has also be in part due to the lack of available food in our kitchen due to our budget for the week of $0 (and that is due to spending it all while in New Orleans). My other gig for the week has been a cut back in television, which so far is going well. I am officially not watching any television other than sex in the city (which I just finished watching and yes it was great!) and alias which I will watch tomorrow night. Other than that and the occasional movie (not on tv movies, those count as television), nada for the week. Oh and last night I went to the library with Miriam and got a billion books (okay only 8, but its a lot) and I am so excited. These are the books I got: - two Sandman books by Neil Gaiman. These are graphic novels and supplemental to the series which I have already read (all except for the last one which I haven't been able to get a hand on yet). I really have to thank Tim for introducing me to these, I had never read graphic novels before, however I had read American Gods by the same author. And let me just say, I love these books, and for those of you who think graphic novels = superheros and an excuse to read only dialogue, these books are so much more than that. Essentially they tell the story of Dream one of the 7 Endless (Destiny, Death, Despair, Delirium (formerly known as Delight), Desire and Destruction). I have already finished one of them and loved it! - the newest book by Laurie R. King, Nightwatch is the title I think. She is one of my all time favorite authors and the only author who I regularly buy their books. She wrote the Beekeeper's Apprentice and the subsequent series which tells the story of Sherlock Holmes and the 15 year old American woman who becomes his student of sorts. - Red Dragon by Thomas Harris, I went on a Hannibal kick this weekend and watched the two movies in the trilogy that I had previously not seen, so I thought it would be fitting to read the one book in the group which I hadn't read yet. I am around half way through this one and will probably finish it today or tomorrow. - 4 books by Alexander McCall Smith who is author of The No 1. Ladies Detective Agency and the Sunday Philosophy Club both of which I loved and want to read more of each of the series. Oh and in an update on internship things, I started my supplemental internship today at Horizon House today and it went really well. I was working at the front desk which meant I was right there as the homeless neighbors came into to use the day room and the various services offered. I answered phones, asked a lot of questions and checked a lot of people into the computers. In other words it was very people oriented and hands-on, a nice change from the more research oriented nature of my other internship. One last thing, I got a great email from Carl Helrich today in response to my email asking when I would hear about Maple Scholars. This is what I wrote, followed by his answer: Carl, I sent in my application in February for Maple Scholars this summer and I was wondering when I would find out if I have been accepted or not. I also was wondering the starting date for the program and the stipend amount. Thanks, Abby -------- Abby, Check the campus mail. I suspect you will find the answers to all those questions. Oh ... yes ... congratulations. Peace, Carl What can I say, I love that man!

Monday, March 07, 2005


don't you hate it when you are typing in a web address and mistype qqq instead?

Saturday, March 05, 2005


Monday Day #1: We get a pretty early start out of Indy, stopping briefly in Louisville for breakfast before heading south. Anna and I split the day fairly evenly driving wise, being two out of the three drivers available in the group. We finally arrive at Fountainbleu state park just as the sun as setting, which is perfect because there is nothing more fun than setting up a tent you haven't seen before in the dark. Thanks to Samuka's determination and the long lasting batteries in the van we are successful with the tent. We all pretty much crash, the boys in the smaller two person, Anna and I in the big ole orange pub tent and Ebony and Miriam in the van. As the night wore on, we all discovered the fact that just because we are in Louisiana and just because we are on spring break and just because the days are fairly warm, does not mean that the nights are not incredibly cold. Tuesday Day #2: After the sun is given an appropriate amount of time to warm our tents and sleeping bags we all crawl out and realize that although cold and somewhat suspiciously damp the camping site is really gorgeous. Then Anna, David, Samuka and I all attempt the task of getting the camp stove to work. Once again Samuka fixes the thing and I am able to produce some slightly undercooked but much appreciated pancakes. Then we head off to explore the beach at the campground. Situated on the north shore of Lake Pontichain, we could see the skyline of New Orleans in the distance and we all waded around enjoying the warm 60's weather. But this beach was not enough for us, we wanted the real thing, so we packed up and drove east to Mississippi to the Gulf of Mexico beach for the afternoon, after some failed attempts at tanning by Anna, a somewhat successful sand building by Samuka and much reading, wading and walking by all we had a good time. However we did manage to lock ourselves out of the van, requiring a call to the locksmith and a fee of $30 out of our already limited budget for the week. After the beach we stopped by a Lil' Rays to try some real southern food and seafood. I had the smoked sausage po'boy which was quite good, although not revolutionary. Wednesday Day #3: This morning we finally reached our true destination and explored New Orleans. Well mainly the French Quarter, but it was a good time. We gawked at sexually explicit necklaces, ate French Beignets at Cafe D'Monde, had a muffelatta sandwich from Central Grocery and bought a great scarf and hat combo at a small shop. All in all a good day. After returning to our campsite we started a fire and had a blowout cook-out, roasting our brats, making mountain pies and of course smores. Around 10pm we crawled into our sleeping bags to get some much needed rest. Around an hour or two later it started raining and continued to do so throughout the night. Thursday Day #4: I awoke to discover that I was a wee bit damp or maybe soaked would be a better term. The blanket underneath my sleeping bag was soaking, half my sleeping bag was wet and the corresponding half of my body was wet as well. This also happened to be that my growing sniffles during the previous day decided to bloom into a full blown cold. However I was not the only miserable person, Anna, David and Samuka were all equally soaked. Ebony and Miriam however were nice and dry from their night spent in the van. This was the point where I decided enough was enough and I was ready to go home. After a phone call to my dad I got the telephone number of my cousins who live north of Birmingham, Alabama not far from our intended route. I called and asked for the use of their floor, to which they willingly agreed. After one last day in New Orleans and a somewhat disappointing meal in a higher priced restaurant, we headed north taking our wet tents and bags with us. We arrived at Bob and Lisa's house about half-past midnight and crashed. Friday Day #5: I awoke slightly disoriented but quickly recovered and enjoyed a catch-up conversation with Bob and Lisa after which they decided to make us all pancakes. Showing marvelous hospitality they cooked for us, gave us the leftovers, some food for the road, and directions back to the interstate. This is just one more reason why I love family and especially my own family :) The rest of friday was spent without incident with me spending most of the time in the middle seat reading and using up over half the tissue box. However it should be noted that Anna drove the entire 7 hours herself, for which I was very grateful. We arrived home and proceeded to clean out the van and hang up the many wet items, before finally crashing and enjoying the fresh shrimp dinner that Samuka cooked for us.