Puddles and Mud...

The weather was gorgeous today. I wish it would stay this warm all year round. This is the perfect temperature, in my humble opionion.

I had to work tonight, only for 3 hours, but it went by so fast. I wasn't expecting that! I was able to help a couple pick vests, and they took a long time. I love it when time flies :)

In my devos today I read the story of Balaam and Balak. I am finding so many interesting stories in Numbers, ones that I totally thought were in a different part of the Bible. I keep thinking that going through the Pentateuch will be boring, but it is actually really interesting. I never really thought about that story before, and the whole talking donkey thing. But if you do actually, seriously think about it, it's totally absurd! A donkey was trying to save Balaam from the angel that wanted to kill him, and then God opened its mouth to speak so it could defend itself. I am so in awe of that.

I am making my dinner now. It's going to be very uneventful. I find I do not enjoy cooking these days, and I am avoiding it like the plague. But I do enjoy making pasta, and I am going to get fat on it. I've decided. It's happening!!-(that was for you, mom!)

Have a great night :)



Rain and Chocolate...

Today didn't have any classes, but I decided to get up earlier and get waffles in the cafeteria. They were not as good as I was expecting. Perhaps I was comparing them to the Belgian waffles that we served at the coffee bistro I worked at last semester. Oh well.

I have a class tonight, so I should go. But Nana sent me this today, and I decided you should have a laugh. So enjoy!

To Maintain A Healthy Level Of Insanity

1. At Lunch Time, Sit In Your Parked Car With
Sunglasses on and point a Hair Dryer At Passing Cars.
See If They Slow Down.

2. Page Yourself Over The Intercom. Don't Disguise Your Voice!

3. Every Time Someone Asks You To Do Something, ask If they want fries with that.

4. Put Decaf In The Coffee Maker For 3 Weeks . Once Everyone has Gotten Over Their Caffeine Addictions,
Switch to Espresso.

5. In the Memo Field Of All Your Checks, Write 'For Marijuana'

6. Skip down the hall Rather Than Walk and see how many looks you get.

7. Order a Diet Water whenever you go out to eat, with a serious face.

8. Specify That Your Drive-through Order Is 'To Go'.

9. Sing Along At The Opera.

10. Five Days In Advance, Tell Your Friends You Can' t Attend Their Party Because You have a headache .

11. When The Money Comes Out of The ATM, Scream 'I Won! I Won!'

12. When Leaving the Zoo, Start Running towards the Parking lot, Yelling 'Run For Your Lives! They're Loose!'

13. Tell Your Children Over Dinner, 'Due To The Economy, We Are Going To Have To Let One Of You Go

Love, Ashleigh

Special Edition Blog

The Correlation Between Typing and Playing Piano

I have played piano since I was 10 years old (at least I think that was when I began). I practiced as much or as little as I wanted, to the chagrin of my teacher, who constantly got upset with me for not practicing my scales. Then the computer became popular, and everyone was suddenly typing. We bought the Mavis Beacon Typing program, and who cares about technique when you could play typing games on the computer?

People suddenly started worrying about ergonomics. Were keyboards created for our hands, or were we trying to contort our hands to fit the keyboard? My dad bought a ergonomic keyboard that was guaranteed to fit the natural flow from wrist to fingertip. I remember the first time I tried typing on it. It felt strange at first, but then I became comfortable, and even started to enjoy the slightly waved keyboard.

Then we bought my first laptop on E-bay, just before I went away to college. If anything was not ergonomic, it was this laptop. At least one inch thick, it already raised my arms at an incredibly unhealthy angle, not to mention the keyboard was small. However, I could not escape the typing. I was doing it constantly, writing essays, papers, assignments, questions....you name it.

There is a distinct difference between typing and playing piano, but there are similarities as well. Let's look at the similarities first.

While playing piano and typing, one tends to move his/her fingers at a rapid pace, causing them to either play notes or type letters. I maintain that piano players can type faster than non-piano players, simply because their fingers have been trained to move rapidly since childhood, or whenever they began playing piano.

Now, let's look at the differences. While playing piano, I sit up straight. I keep my elbows away from my body, my elbows are parallel to the keys and I move my hands with my fingers while they run over the ivories and ebonies. I am very alert, and I pay attention to any tension in my body, working to keep myself relaxed.

However, when I type, I tend to slouch. My hands are elevated above my elbows at an odd angle for long periods of time, and they stay static, seeming to be frozen in time. My wrists take the brunt of my weight, resting on the smooth, silver surface of my laptop. Only my fingers move, jabbing and piercing through letters my brain has subconsciously memorized through months of Mavis Beacon training, forming words that hopefully make sense to the outside world. My eyes form a glaze that only goes away after I tear my gaze from the screen for a time. I am in a catatonic state.

Perhaps it is my great sense of musicianship(tongue-in-cheek only), and my infinite lack of nerd-dom which causes me to see that computers are taking a toll on everyone, not only the piano players and musicians out there. Having said that, I am not going to ditch my newly purchased laptop simply for the ergonomic aspect. However, I believe that I should watch how long I spend on my computer. I may be ruining my posture and my wrists, causing permanent health problems for later on.

I don't want to stop playing the piano, and I certainly do not want to ruin my chances of being able to pick up my own children for fear of dropping them due to weak wrists.

I need to play piano more, to enjoy the music that others have created, or discover the music that God has created in me.

Duets anyone?



Warm Days and the Power Struggle...

I don't know how it was where you all live, but up in here, it was a gorgeous day! Warm, sunny, and blue skies! WE have been blessed for the last 3 days!

I wrote a paper today on my philosophy of education, for my educational theory and practice class. I didn't think I would like that class, but it's actually so interesting! I have been thinking that I want to teach English as a second language for a while, but since starting this class, this passion has blossomed even more so. I can't wait until I can actually get out there and teach!

Tonight at my impact group, we were talking about what we are to be like as women. There were many rabbit trails, but this is the gist of it: basically, women can control men with their words just as much as men can control women with abuse or whatever else. We were talking about how important it is for us, as Christian women, to watch the way we interact with guys. We need to say things to them that will uplift them and encourage them to act like men, instead of "boys". Those who are in relationships also need to remember that God has designed men to be the head in a relationship. That doesn't mean he has the right to boss us around, but it just means that he is the leader, and we need to respect that. It's not a power struggle between the sexes. It's the way God designed us. Neither men nor women can live without each other, because we both bring important things to a relationship.

I will try to be more of an encouraging friend to my guy friends. Not that I'm "not" encouraging, but I'm sure I leave much to be desired in the way I treat them.

We also reminded each other that if we want a man that is godly, we need to focus on our spirituality, because that godly man that we desire will also be looking for a godly woman.

I am so glad we had this discussion tonight. It is good to be reminded of how powerful our actions are.

I hope you have a great night!




Church and Haircuts...

Today was a good day, although it seems like it was so long. My friend Ashley came for a visit! It was so nice to see her; I really enjoy hanging out with her. We went out for lunch, then went to the mall for a bit. When we came back home, I asked her to give my hair a trim and some bangs. It feels so good-I love getting my hair cut!

I have been having fun experimenting on my computer, and finding new things to do. Need I mention it is becoming the biggest time waster in the world???

As I have said earlier, I have been reading in Numbers. Today I was reading about the way the Israelites complained. I was impressed with the power of God. He loved them so much, and wanted them to be set apart from the rest of the nations, but at times He had to punish them. He was very serious about the things He said, even when the Israelites didn't necessarily take Him seriously. I found it interesting how many times they complained, even though he provided for them constantly. Moses got so incredibly upset and frustrated, and I know he didn't understand how they could complain so much. We are so much like the Israelites that sometimes it's frightening. I keep wondering how we would be different if God punished us like He did the Israelites, and yet were they any different?

I hope you all have a great night!



Long Days and Work...

I just want to thank those of you who left your comments from my last blog. They were very insightful and encouraging. I need to apologize for my attitude last night. I know that I need to be more mature, and I need to set a good example as well.

I basically did nothing today except laundry and work.

I thouroughly enjoyed the sun; excluding the night, the day was beautiful and warm-ish! I was hoping it would be that way forever!

Tonight I bought a new laptop, FINALLY! I decided I had enough money, and it was important. I was wasting time on my other one, waiting for pages to upload...not to mention it was five million years old, and only had 10GB of hard drive!!! My new one is quite a welcome change!

Please pray for friends and family of a lady in my church back home. She died on Tuesday, and the funeral was today. I know my mom is taking it hard. Flo was a wonderful woman, always joking and being sarcastic, but she always wanted a hug. She was a tenacious woman, but now she is with her Lord after battling cancer for about 2 years. I will miss her and her hugs.

I hope you all have a great night-



Cold Weather and Coffee House...

Tonight I am in a ranting mood. So be forewarned.

I enjoy dancing, so I don't see anything wrong with it. I think it's fine as long as you're having fun and you're not doing anything too sketchy. The last act of the coffee house tonight, which was the worst one I've been to yet, someone was lip synching a song that was, shall we say, "dance-able". So some of us were dancing to them in the back, just having fun, but of course the administration came in at that very point and made us turn it off.

Of course I must respect the rules of the school, and for some reason they don't like dancing here. But I LOVE dancing! How can someone hear a song and not want to move? It's so stifling!!!

I don't have many problems with this school, so I feel rather foolish venting. I just feel like dancing is a natural part of having fun, and yet we aren't allowed to do it.

I don't want to be ignorant and say I don't care. I applied to be a Residence Advisor next year, and I feel that they might judge me because of this issue. If I am chosen to be an R.A., I won't be able to dance because I would have to set an example. I would be so sad if that happened.

I am so torn! And I'm making it into a bigger issue than it needs to be.

But I will try to behave :)

I hope you all have a great night.



Friends and Make-up...

My roommate from first year, Natalie, came by for a visit today! I love her so much, and it was so nice to catch up with her. She is staying until tomorrow, possibly Friday, so I have lots of time to chat. She is so awesome, and she makes me laugh. She is a professional make-up artist, graduated from make-up school in Toronto. She did make-up on our friend Meghan, and then plucked my eyebrows for me :) They are now nicely shaped, thanks to her!

I almost forgot to write today, simply because I was so distracted by her, but I know at least two people who would have been very disappointed if I hadn't written.

This morning in chapel, we had a pastor from a church in Hamilton come and speak. He was very funny, and talked about how we should take advantage of our youth. Because we are young, we can be more energetic and enthusiastic in ministry. He also said something that stuck to me.
"When I ask people, if they are interested in missions, they say, "Oh yes! I love missions so much!" but then I ask them where they want to go, and they say they have no clue."

Then he said that we need to be passionate about what we want to do in life. We need to be passionate about where we want to go. I am still going to struggle with this, because my pat answer for a while has been, "I will go wherever God wants." I don't think that is such a bad answer though. I WOULD go wherever He wants.

I hope you all have a wonderful evening.



Leviticus and Holiness...

In my devotions lately, I have been following along in my planner to "read the Bible in one year". I have never actually read the whole Bible in a year, so that is my goal! However, it is taking me through Leviticus, and the chapters I was reading were astounding. I have always considered Leviticus to be boring, and, for all intents and purposes, it can be quite boring in many parts. This is why I was so surprised when I stumbled across some beautiful passages between chapters 18-22. I never realized God was such a stickler for Israel's holiness, but it was something He wanted for them so much. He wanted them to be set apart from the other nations, to live holy lives. I have been thinking much about holiness and purity of mind, body, and emotions in the past few days. After reading about the way God desired holiness for the Israelites, I imagine that He would have the same expectations for us as Christians today! One thing that also struck me was the fact that God kept repeating, "I am the Lord", or "I am the Lord your God". He is our God, and He expects us to treat Him as such, and to obey His commands to be set apart and live holy lives. Powerful stuff!

I can't believe it started snowing again today. I was hoping it would leave. No wonder there was fog over the whole city last night. The warm air from the past two days was mixing with the cold front that swept over this morning.

I wrote this a little while ago-I'd say over a year. But I just want to share it with you now.

Stamp me.
Seal me.
Take me.
Heal me.
Mark me.
Show me

I hope everyone has a great day.

Love, Ashleigh


Nightmares and Sunbeams...

Last night I had a scary dream. I don't get those often, although many of my dreams are strange indeed. I don't like dreaming things that make me afraid, and it is especially disconcerting when I wake up and don't even have courage to move. However, I have prayed, and I know that God will protect me from the scary dreams, because He is so much bigger than all of that!

The sun is shining beautifully today! The only thing that makes it less than perfect is the snow that still lies pitifully on the ground. Have I mentioned that I long for hot summer days?!

I was having a discussion with a friend today, about how when we tell things to people about others or certain topics we inadvertantly sway their opinions. For instance, the other day someone told me something about one of the guys I know, and instantly my opinion of him was changed. My friend said that she doesn't want to tell people some things because she is afraid of this. I think it is inevitable to sway people's opinions, but we shouldn't feel guilty for their actions or attitudes. However, it is obvious that if we are gossiping or sharing information that is less than uplifting, we should probably refrain. I don't know...just somethings to think about.

I am excited, because 3 of my friends here at school are starting a little "French club". We're going to get together at least once a week and drink grape juice and eat cheese and practice our French! Out of all the girls, mine is the worst. However, I look forward to surrounding myself in it and feeling more comfortable with using words I haven't spoken in many years!

I hope you will have a blessed day!



Nessun Dorma...

The sermon in church was on holiness and purity. I found it was very relevant, considering that is something we all struggle with in our lives.

Today was our choir practice for the Ben Heppner fund raiser we're having in 2 weeks. I'm really excited about it, and can't wait to sing with a live orchestra!!

Tonight is the superbowl, and apparently one of the guys made chili. I'm thinking of hanging out for a bit, but then coming back here to finish some homework. I'm not one for watching sports on Tv.

I hope everyone has a great night!

Love, Ashleigh