kimana517: (music : hanson)
Friday night Isaac and I both left work a few hours early because we had to get downtown to be trained for working the Holt International Child Sponsorship table during Winter Jam. It was fun to cut the line (we had to be there an hour before the doors opened) and get right in for free. We went up to a Holt table near the Newsboys merchandise table and met some other volunteers, and then they asked us if we wanted to be stationed there or if we'd like to be down actually in the arena, where we would get mobbed at intermission but get to see the show. Um, yeah, no contest - we went down there. We ended up on the floor behind the sound/lighting guys, maybe the equivalent of 25 rows back from the stage and about 15 feet from the end of the runway from the stage. NICE. We were informed by the official Holt guy what to do, and we helped set up a bit, and we met some other volunteers, who were all incredibly nice. (Isaac even got to network a bit and gave out a business card, so hey, maybe his boss will really benefit from letting him leave work early!) 

The concert was great, but first let me tell you about volunteering. Turns out most of the Holt kids are up for adoption, and the sponsors are basically providing care for them until they are adopted - which could be any time from immediately to never. There were so many of them. There were about 12 full-length folding tables with at least 60 packets (one packet = one child) on each of them, and that's not even close to as many as Holt has. I had tears in my eyes when I realized that for all we knew our child/ren could be on one of those tables and maybe someone from Jacksonville would be caring for them until we can. I also almost cried when, after the concert had ended and the attendees had left, we had to put so many packets in a box to be taken to the next concert and those kids would have to wait another day to be chosen.

We really didn't have to do anything but enjoy the show until intermission, when we were indeed mobbed, but it was awesome to help so many people help impact kids' lives. I know a few Holt adoption brochures were given out too, so I am praying those people go for it. After the intermission the band Tenth Avenue North played and we were still helping people fill out forms during their whole set, so we pretty much missed them. After that we had a few more people come to the table, but we were pretty much done. Winter Jam still has a lot of tour dates, so if they're coming near you, I strongly encourage you to sign up to volunteer. If the awesome cause is not enough motivation for you, keep in mind that you will also get in free and get a free hat and CD.

Now, to the concert itself. Read more... )

So, Friday night we went to a rock concert for free. Saturday night we went to the symphony for free! Ha! Isaac had been looking forward to the Jacksonville Symphony Orchestra's Organ Symphony Celebration for almost a year, because they were actually performing a piece (Symphony No. 3) by Camille Saint-Saens, his favorite composer. They also performed Bach's Toccata and Fugue and Jongen's Sinfonia Concertante (which neither of us had heard of), and it was all featuring a 23-year-old organ prodigy named Felix Hell, whose last name we made numerous original and very mature jokes about. We had seen online that there was something called "Words on Music" before the concert started and we figured we may as well go see what that is. I'm so glad we did! The conductor and organist told us about the pieces we would be hearing that night, about the organ (both generic organ-playing info and the JSO's historic and beautiful organ), and then answered questions. For someone like me, who is not a regular listener of classical music (I think it's beautiful, but I greatly prefer music with words to sing along to), that was extremely beneficial. It helped me understand and more greatly appreciate what we later heard in the concert. And it was an amazing concert. So gorgeous. I love watching the violinists out of the corner of my eye because when they raise their bows together it looks like reeds blowing in the wind. Isaac was enraptured when they finally started the Saint-Saens piece, because he had been waiting so long for it! I was proud of myself for recognizing a lot of it. (Although I owe that to Isaac since he listens to it all the time.)

Can I just say yet again how grateful I am to live in a place that, despite its small-town vibe, offers all the amenities of a city, like big rock concerts, and the symphony? And also how grateful I am that my dad works in a job that can get me free tickets to said symphony and free parking?
kimana517: (isaac&me : laughing / forever)
H - Husband. It might seem like I should wait and do I for Isaac, but since I nearly always call him "Husband", at least when I'm talking to him, it is more fitting to make him the H. So. Husband. He is my best friend and anything that's fun without him would be more fun with him. I love being with him and I wish that he didn't have to work so I could hang out with him all the time. He is the only person who really knows how silly I am, and yet he loves me anyway. I can't wait to see him as a dad.  =o)

I - Internet. Without it I would not have met the vast majority of you reading this, and therefore I would've missed out on some great friendships. I just spent two weekends, one in Orlando and one in Tennessee, hanging out with 5 of my online friends. I must admit I occasionally daydream about all of us living in the same neighborhood. (For the record, there are two houses for sale on my block...) I've been in love with the internet since I was about 13 years old.

J - Jacksonville. I love Florida as a whole, but I especially love Jacksonville. I love that I have access to all the amenities of a city, but with a small town feel. I love that Jax leans conservative (Duval County did not go for Obama!), that we have the river and gorgeous ocean beaches, that tourists and old people drive right by us, that we can go to St. Augustine, Orlando, Savannah, Daytona, and Cape Canaveral for a day trip (a long day trip, but still, a day trip), and that we have the best thrift stores and church ever.

K - Kutless. They have been one of my favorite bands for many years now. Their songs never get old to me, because they seriously rock, but they are also obviously Christian. There is nothing wrong with a band just having positive or philosophical songs that never mention the name of Jesus, but a lot of times I want blatantly Christian songs, and when I want to rock out to blatantly Christian songs, there is nothing better than Kutless. I've seen them in concert twice and they're excellent. Their song, "Strong Tower", is one of the most encouraging songs to me.
kimana517: (places : the beach)
+ Finding the little discrepancy that has halted my financial reports is very fulfilling... even though it is my fault the discrepancy was there in the first place.

+ My haircut looks SO GOOD. I keep thinking, "Why didn't I do this sooner?" and then I remember the whole long-enough-to-donate thing.

+ I adore so many of the songs we're singing in church this Sunday. I wish I had mp3s of all of them so I could make a playlist.

+ Speaking of singing in church this Sunday: I will be the loudest person singing the melody. This could be interesting.

+ Necesito para ir a la playa. Pronto. I have not been there nearly enough this summer.

+ Today was one of those days that just needed iced coffee. God rocks for putting us in a house a block from a McDonald's.

+ Rock Band party tonight! I plan to rock the mic, yo.

+ You know how some movies just need to be watched with certain friends? I can't tell you how strongly I'm considering driving all the way to Tampa to watch Julie & Julia with [livejournal.com profile] modmerseygirl. What do you think, Kim?

+ The Europe trip was just a dream. I know it. Who really gets to take three weeks off work to travel around Europe? Didn't I dream the cold, rainy, scarf weather in London and the history of kings and queens of England? the Parisian dinners of fresh baked baguette, cheese, and cider after seeing priceless history? gelato every day and sites of amazing ancient importance in Italy? seeing sites so ancient they were before the birth of Jesus after breakfasts on our balcony overlooking so many flowers and the ocean and mountains visible in the distance in Greece? sharing it all, 24/7, with my lover and best friend? Yes. It was all a dream. The best dream. I would like to dream it again, please.
kimana517: (places : backpacking)
I'm writing this from our hostel in Athens. It's definitely hostel-y, especially after the other places we've stayed at in Greece. The first night we were here was the night in a very nice hotel, thanks to Isaac's boss. It was GORGEOUS - possibly the nicest hotel I've ever stayed in, and I've stayed in some good ones. Then we drove to Tolo, a little beach town on the Pelopponese peninsula, where we stayed in a cute little hotel with a big room w/ a kitchen. So to be back to a hostel? Well, it's getting us ready to be happy to go home. :-) Although i'm already almost to that point. I adore traveling, and this trip has been AWESOME, but I love my house and my town and my church and my clothes (I an going to reenact the scene from Gilmore Girls when They get home from Europe and Rory goes up to her rock drawer and says, "Hello, boys." LOL.) and my family and Mandy and eating food other than bread and fruit and many, many other things. We have a list of several restaurants we're going to go to too. Ah... Real food. :-)

Anyway. I want to tell you about our trip, but that will wait till I get home and can show you pics to in with. We're hoping to throw a Europe party a few weeks after we get home. We'll eat bread, cheese, fruit, cider, and the girls can year scarves like every woman in England and France. I'll have to get the pics organized and the video edited by them though. We'll see about that.

I found out that the only people going to El Salvador from my church this summer are me, my friend Codie, Ken, and another friend John. That's it! I have no idea why so few are going, but it makes me sad. (Isaac was going to go, but then one of his coworkers quit, so he really shouldn't.) Codie and I will have a blast though... And not just cause she's fluent in Spanish!

Today was amazing. We went to ancient Corinth and walked where the apostle Paul walked! We read Acts 18 while staring at the Bema seat he was brought before. SO COOL.

IDK if I'll write again before we get home or not. Bye!

Um.

Saturday, 7 March 2009 12:40
kimana517: (me : goofy)
I was driving back from the post office just now and I saw, going down the sidewalk on Blanding, one of Jacksonville's busiest streets, a guy riding on a 10-foot unicycle. Um. I was like, "Oh jeez, if he falls, he will fall out into traffic and DIE." And then I thought, "Well, maybe he deserves that for riding a 10-FOOT UNICYCLE on BLANDING."

Heh.

In other news, I don't know why I was anti-dresses for so many years (from ages 10-24). They are really the epitome of laziness, which is definitely something I can get behind. LOL. Seriously though - no thinking involved. You don't have to make sure stuff matches or looks good together; you just toss a dress on, and you're ready. They're as cool as shorts and a tank top but are considered nicer, but they're actually easier! And the only thing you can't do in a dress is climb trees, and since there are no good climbing trees near my house, that's not a problem. (Hi, my name is Bethany, I'm 25 years old and I still like to climb trees...) So yeah. Comfy, cute dresses = win.

I reallyreally want to have a picnic for lunch. I wonder when Isaac will get home from work.
kimana517: (seasons : autumn / walk with me)
+ The copier is making a strange noise. I've never heard it make this particular noise before. Pleeease don't be a bad sign. *hopes*

+ I walked to work today. Well, actually, I walked to Chick-Fil-A, which is 1.5 miles from my house, and then to church, which is .4 miles from that. This morning we walked 1.5 miles to the mechanic to pick up Isaac's no-longer-a-death-trap car. Walking is not high impact, but it is cardio. The days have been so gorgeous lately, too - perfect walking weather. I like to think I'm saving on gas money too, but with gas at $1.79/gallon, I'm really not saving much. (But I am NOT complaining about gas being cheap again!) Still, it will hopefully help shrink my hips. (Chick-Fil-A, however, will not. LOL. Though I did barely manage to resist their new Peppermint Chocolate Milkshake...) I've walked about 7 miles in 3 days. Not bad.

+ How was your Thanksgiving? Mine was fantastic. Seriously - one of the best in many years. We woke up early (sad), and decided we wanted cinnamon rolls (happy). So, we walked to Winn-Dixie and got some Pillsbury ones. Seth's friend Justin is staying with us, and Seth spent the night that night, so we shared with them. *glares* Hehe. We went to AAAC's around noon for Thanksgiving dinner. This was the first time Ange has hosted it (and the first time they've had a house to do it in) and the girl seriously outdid herself. It was amazing. Absolutely fantastic. My whole family was there except NN&J (who live in Indiana), and so were Ange's half-sister, and her brother, his girlfriend, and their two kids. In all the years I've known Ange, I had not met her brother until yesterday.

After lunch we watched the Lions game till we couldn't take it anymore (for the non-football-inclined, the Lions are having the worst season ever. They have not won one game, and it looks like they will not be winning any at all. And who did they play yesterday? The team who's only lost one game! Oh, it was so sad. BUT - I thought they were only going to score 3 points, but instead they scored 10. The score was 47-10. That's not even as bad as a Gators game, so I didn't have to cry. LOL.), we went for a walk around a nearby reservoir, where we saw an alligator! I had never seen one in Jax before. There are lots of them in the lake at WOL FL, but I hadn't seen one since we moved from there. This was a little one - 4 feet at the most - but it was so cool!

After that we played a bit of Rock Band, and then Ange and I wanted to hit CVS for their amazing free stuff. Ashley and Tanya were curious how we get so much free stuff, so they came with us. CVSing with other people is so much fun! I had always done it alone. Though with 4 people, 2 of whom were n00bs, it took forever. They were so lost at first but quickly got it down. We had amazing cashiers, too, who were bored till we got there, and then they had 4 cute girls to entertain them. LOL. Ashley and Tanya were totally floored at how much they got for hardly more than their initial buy-in of $5.98 + tax. I got a ton of stuff, too. I had to pay $3.68 because I only had 27 ECBs, but I got 47 ECBs back, plus all my stuff, so it was worth it! What a great time!

When we finally finished cleaning up at CVS, we went back to AAAC's. We ate leftovers for dinner, played a few rounds of Pass the Pigs, and then Isaac and I went home to join Seth and Justin for a viewing of Hancock. I liked it, but I'm kinda glad now that we were never able to go see it in the theater. I tell ya though, there was a twist I totally did not see coming. Tonight we're going to watch Kung Fu Panda! It's nice having 3 Redboxes within a block away. Heh.

+ This morning we woke up early to go out for breakfast at a restaurant near our house (yep - we walked to that too) with most of Ange's family, and Mom and Grams. Then we hit the thrift store, where everyone found multiple things. Yes, we all did our Black Friday shopping at the thrift store. LOL. There was no one camped out there. Go figure. ;o)

+ Seth said he wants to see Twilight, so yay - maybe I won't have to see it alone after all! We may go tomorrow. I think it's hilarious that Seth - a teenage college guy - is willing to go see it with me, and Isaac - a long-married man - is not. Hehe.

+ Wow - apparently the days of Long Bethany Posts have returned. Oh, the memories. =o)

(no subject)

Thursday, 6 November 2008 18:56
kimana517: (tv : supernatural : up to no good)
Yay for a normal post!

+ Our Halloween night was fun, but felt nothing like Halloween. We had fun though.

+ Saturday morning we woke up early to go with Isaac's coworkers to the Florida Baptist Children's Home. We cooked a meal on the grill and then served it. Sadly, we didn't get to interact with the kids (some orphans, some temporarily there till a parent gets their act together) much. This was my first visit to an American orphanage. I felt bad for the kids there, of course, but it just reaffirmed my desire to adopt kids from other countries. To the orphans in El Salvador, the FBCH would be like heaven. The kids don't go hungry, and they have house parents so they get attention and affection, and they're taught the Truth, not the cult of Mary.

Saturday afternoon I slept for 4 hours on the couch! That was not expected, but much-needed. We watched Ghostbusters, which I hadn't seen since I was a teenager. That night Isaac went to play football with some friends, and I watched Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, which I hadn't seen since it was in theaters last year. It is amazing that that movie is 2 hours long and there is SO MUCH left out of it.

+ Sunday was pretty much engulfed by our Olympian Fun Fall Festival. After lunch we set up for it, which took so long we only had about an hour and a half between it and the actual festival. We had 13 kids come, though, and 6 of them don't attend church anywhere; their only exposure to God is through our club. We had a ton of candy left over again, so that was great. Hehe. I did face painting, and tried a few new things this year that went over big.

+ Monday's activities have slipped my mind, save for watching SNL's Presidential Bash that evening. Very entertaining.

+ Tuesday I voted in the morning and did not have to wait in line at all. Bwaha. I then went out to lunch at Olive Garden with Grams, Ange, and the kids. It'd been ages since I'd been there. I do love their Five Cheese Ziti al Forno, breadsticks, and raspberry lemonade. *licks lips* As mentioned the other day, we went to AAAC's house that night for a small election party, which was a total blast and an excuse to use the chocolate fountain again. =oD I was up way too late that night though, and I've paid for it since.

+ Yesterday I spent the day cocooned in the house. I felt like crap for staying up so late without being able to sleep in, and I was still royally ticked about the election results, so I did not want to see any news or newspapers. I was able to take a bit of a nap in the late afternoon, and I convinced Isaac to join me. We skipped the gym in favor of something more fun, and then finally went to see Fireproof. (We've been saying we were going to see it ever since it came out.) We were both pleasantly surprised by it. I had no idea it was funny, and I was expecting nearly all the actors to be bad, like in Facing the Giants. Instead, only a few of them were really wooden, and the rest, while not likely to win an Academy Award, were quite good. It was well-made too - as good as any indie film I've seen. And of course I bawled my eyes out. Hehe. I also had fun spotting people who were in Facing the Giants. We went to the movie at 7, and still hadn't had dinner, but thankfully it was free small popcorn day for people in their Movie Watcher club, so we snacked on that and then went to Steak 'n Shake. We hadn't been there in months, and they have 4 meals under $4 now - and they're good ones - so that was awesome. It was a great little impromptu date night. =o)

Oh yeah, and when we were on the highway heading down to the theater, we kept seeing all these cops go by very quickly, some with lights on, some without. We got around the bend and saw the cops (now all with lights on) blocking the entire highway. We were right behind them. We still don't know what was going on, but we saw them arrest 3 girls in their late teens/20s who looked stoned. We're guessing they were driving recklessly and, to have so many policemen there, probably refusing to pull over at first. Isaac was pretty freaked out, because the cops had their guns drawn and we were so close to them, but I figured any bullets would've had to go through 3 cop cars to get to us. Anyway, it made us late for the movie, but it was pretty exciting.

+ Someone in Greece bought one of my Supernatural shirts! That is so cool. What will be even cooler is if when we're there in June, I see her wearing it. Yeah, yeah, Greece is a decent-sized country, blah, blah, blah. It would still be cool.

+ Off to watch Survivor and then Supernatural. Happy almost-Friday!

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