February 26, 2013

around campus: 2nd semester

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i know i did a post like this last semester but here are a few pictures of new things i’ve found and places i’ve explored this semester. lately, i’ve been in love with one of the little islands on the lake near our dorms. there are goats and peacocks and chickens on the island but the silly ducks that run whenever i come near and seem to gather to make plans to avoid me are by far my favorite.

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February 23, 2013

ccc camp

throughout the semester, we have the opportunity to help out with camps and retreats for local churches. this past weekend, i was part of a team that went to christchurch to help at their yearly family camp. the weekend was full of working in the kitchen, hanging out with the beyond adorable kids and utter exhaustion. it was a great weekend but i must admit it was also nice to come back to the ranch and get a good night sleep with a real pillow. oh the little luxuries we so easily take for granted. the highlight of the camp was a ‘hoedown’ we had the last night. from dressing up like cowboys (i was told i looked more like a horseback rider but close enough, right?) to accidentally exploding a huge bottle of ginger beer during the ginger beer taste tests, it was a night to remember and a great way to end such a memorable camp.

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{hayley vs the evil ginger beer bottle}

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February 21, 2013

christchurch

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christchurch is a beautiful city on the south island of new zealand. in 2011, the city was devastated by a 6.3 earthquake. even two years later, parts of the city are still vacant and in ruins and look straight out of the video game call of duty (yes, i am a nerd). driving through town was a bit eerie and it may be one of the saddest places i have ever visited. you can almost feel the devastation in the air. one area that escapes this feeling is castel street. the street is made up mostly of buildings made of shipping containers and the bright colors make it a really cheery place. the great coffee and restaurants aren't too shabby either. another great experience was visiting the memorial for the 185 people who died in the quake. the memorial consists of 185 chairs of all different kinds painted white and lined up in rows. there are highchairs, wheel chairs, arm chairs, etc. it was really powerful and i'm so glad i got a chance to visit

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{earthquake victim memorial}

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February 19, 2013

forest adventure

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on our first day in christchurch, our team decided to walk to the beach from the camp we're staying at. seems simple enough. we heard the beach was a 15 minute walk away so we started off around 7 at night hoping to be home before nightfall. we ended up getting lost and walking parallel to the beach in a forest for 8 miles until we finally got to the beach through a sandy, overgrown horse trail. needless to say, it was a grand adventure. we found a hedgehog which we lovingly named kent, took tons of silly photos, stargazed on the beach, found a street called 'stalker road' and made up our own stupid jokes to keep us entertained on the long, dark walk back. needless to say, it was one of those nights even pictures, which supposedly say 1000 words, would never begin to describe. and we all know those are the best kind of nights

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February 17, 2013

little things

i’m back and posting! my internet situation here has improved ever so slightly and i’ve been busy as always with classes, baking (i’m assigned to 8 hours of baking a week for the school… basically i’m in heaven!), reading, getting to know the new students here, brushing up on my french with my roommate (who is french but lives in australia) and going on adventures. this weekend, i’m in christchurch on the south island of new zealand to help with a family camp (expect lots of pictures). this semester has been nice so far and i’m learning to love the lack of internet connectivity. it’s made me focus on things that really matter: spending time with friends, homework, reading my bible, and just living life. this semester, my goal is to learn to be content and to “enjoy the little things” as my new jewelry bowl sweetly reminds me daily. i’m going to start a series of posts every so often of little moments and things that make me smile and make life great. enjoy!

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{some of the horses grazing on campus}

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{room decorations that remind me of home}

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{bowl for storing jewelry from kikki k}

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{walks in the local redwood forest}

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{lazy afternoons doing homework on my bed}

February 15, 2013

joans on third

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whenever i take friends to la, i always insist on paying a visit to joan's on third. my mom and i have even driven an hour and a half each way to grab lunch there. though its just a cafe, there is something about the ambiance that is really special. maybe its just special to me because i've had so many good laughs and memories there but joan's is definitely an la treasure. after a day at the los angeles gift show, my mom and i took a few friends there for dinner. the owner ended up coming out and meeting us and she was so sweet, which makes the places all the more lovely knowing such a kind and friendly lady is behind it. when i get home to california, joan's is definitely one of the first places i plan to go.

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{meeting joan}

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February 13, 2013

california adventure

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while i love disneyland, i must admit that california adventure is the place to be for great rides. most of my favorite rides, such as soaring over california and mickey's roller coaster, are all at california adventure. cars land opened about a year ago but i haven't been around long enough to visit. my mom, who got to visit cars land before it even opened to the public, said i had to go on the radiator springs roller coaster which was the highlight of my trip. it was definitely worth the hour and a half line.

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