July 2009

I just finished the wonderful book Holes. It’s a fabulous book that combines history, mystery, and modern coming-of-age themes. I read it years ago, but coming back to it now (after picking it up for $0.50 at Goodwill) meant that…well, frankly, I understood it better. It’s a bit complicated. I love how all of the plot lines converge at the very end on “God’s Thumb”. The writing style is a bit choppy, but it’s a fast and fun read. I’m still trying to figure out the symbolism with the wolf and woodpecker poems that I’ve copied at the bottom of this post, however. Let me know what you think if you read the book!

To summarize, it’s a book about a boy, Stanley, whose family has had bad luck for years. One day Stanley is falsely accused of stealing a famous baseball player’s shoes. When he is in court, he is given the choice of going to Camp Green Lake, or serving time in prison. He’s never been to camp before. Upon arriving, he’s told that he has to dig a 5’x5′ hole everyday because digging holes “builds character”. Ultimately, destiny allows him to repay the debt of his “no good dirty rotten pig stealing great great grandfather”.

“”If only, If only,” the woodpecker sighs,
“The bark on the tree was just a little bit softer.”
While the wolf waits below, hungry and lonely,
He cries to the moo–oo–oon,”
“If only, if only””

“If only, if only, the moon speaks no reply;
Reflecting the sun and all that’s gone by.
Be strong my weary wolf, turn around boldly.
Fly high, my baby bird,
My angel, my only.”



I’ve discovered once again today, that I’m not good at handling my emotions. I have a very difficult time keeping them in check, and making sure that they aren’t affecting what I’m supposed to do. I don’t disguise what I’m feeling very well. I can’t push my emotions aside like some do easily…and this bothers me so, so much!

I wish there was some way I could just switch the emotions off, just focus on what I’m supposed to be doing, and NOT TAKE EVERYTHING SO PERSONALLY.

The problem with today was I had a rough day yesterday, after the first morning of VBS finished. I was pumped then, ready to take on another day…after a nap, of course. Things went downhill from there, but I have no need to go into that.

The problem is, I came into today with the wrong mindset. In fact, I’ve come into VBS with the wrong mindset. It’s time for me to start tomorrow with a fresh perspective, one that isn’t so wrapped up in how *I* think things are supposed to happen.

I’m too confused for tonight. It seems like nothing is right at the moment. I just need to go to sleep now. It way too late.

Stupid emotions.


(Click to read)


Reasons Why I Think I’m Losing My Mind

10. I locked my keys in my car after watching fireworks
9. I locked my keys in my car THREE DAYS LATER after Bible Study
8. I’ve said/done some VERY ridiculous things
7. I’ve been pretty grumpy, and have been needing about 10 hours of sleep in order to feel rested
6. There was a point when I didn’t feel like calling my best friend – THIS IS NOT NORMAL.
5. I asked to play tennis. Actually ASKED. If you know me…yeah.
4. Waiter: “Have a nice meal!” Me: “YOU TOO!”
3. There are about five items I need to give people, and I’ve had about five opportunities to give those things…annnd I forgot.

2. I asked to meet a friend at a Starbucks approximately halfway between where we live. After thirty minutes of looking for it, I found out — IT WAS INSIDE A HY-VEE

and the number 1 reason why I think I’m losing my mind:


There is something genuinely and horribly wrong with me…and I hope it goes away. FAST.



But happy =D

Ethan Isaac Jones is 8 1/2 lbs, has red hair and blue eyes…and I CANNOT wait to see him!!

Before I start…yesterday was ridiculous. <–Weather (that is an ACTUAL picture of the ACTUAL sky yesterday!!) friends, family…FOOD. I love 4th of July.

Call me a dork, but I’ve just begun re-reading The Lord of The Rings, and yesterday I read about Bilbo’s party, with all of the fireworks… And then I got to see some ON THE FRONT row, RIGHT above me, with some of my closest friends…it was great :]

BUT. That’s not what I was going to talk about. The past week I’ve been reading a book about memory, creatively named Memory Power. *sarcasm*. I just happened to pick it up at the library, whilst (haha, I’ve been reading too many old books) meandering through the aisles, hoping something interesting would grab my attention.

I’ve never had a good memory. Ever. For example: I locked my keys in the car yesterday. Not fun. And today, I went to let my neighbor’s dogs out, only to be told I was supposed to do it Saturday. I’ve forgotten two weeks in a row to give my friends back some things I’ve borrowed, and finally, I’ve had VBS materials to give to my room leader for awhile now, and have had FOUR opportunities to give them to her…and have forgotten each time.

So. We’ve established that. HOWEVER. My retention of FACTS has DRASTICALLY improved. For example: twenty minutes ago I memorized a list of 26 words (granted, there’s one for each letter of the alphabet, so they’re easier to remember, BUT STILL.) and I can still remember them now! (*Promise I’m not cheating, haha*)

Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Echo, Foxtrot, Golf, Hotel, India, Juliet, Kilo, Lima, Mike, November, Oscar, Papa, Quebec, Romeo, Sierra, Tango, Uniform, Victor, Whiskey, X-Ray, Yankee, and Zulu.

Supposedly that’s the pilot’s alphabet, what pilots use for tower communications. But that took me about FIFTEEN MINUTES to memorize, I KID YOU NOT. I used the Roman Room with the SEA method.

I’m going to summarize what I learned here, so I don’t forget it…and you can put this into practice too, if you like.

Basically there’s two things: visualization and Roman Rooms. I know the Roman Room sounds a bit sketchy, but it’s AMAZING.

The first thing, visualization is to use SEA to see (*I’m using the book’s terminology, btw, so don’t blame me if it’s cheesy, haha*). Use Senses, Emotions, and Actions to help you remember something. He says to paint a living, 3D picture in your mind of the things you’re trying to remember. I thought of a lighthouse keeper to remember SEA. He SEE’S (sight, a sense) a ship out at SEA, and feels PITY (an emotion) for the sailors, so he IGNITES (an action) the lantern in the lighthouse. See? (no pun intended, promise.) So now I have a mental picture that I can always fall back on. It’s much easier to remember something that has SEA attached to it.

So that’s the first thing. And you use that in the second thing, the Roman Room.

Basically, a Roman Room (and I’m not going to go into the history of it, sorry) is a string of items on the corner-wall-corner-wall-corner-wall-corner-wall-floor-ceiling of a room. You start with 1, an object in the first corner over your left shoulder in a room. 2 is an item on the wall to the right of the first corner, and so on. So you have ten items, each with a number ascribed to it. Next, you use SEA to remember those items, until you can repeat them backward and forward in their numerical order. So you should be able to think the number along with the item, and mentally spin around the room, each thing popping into your head.

That’s a Roman Room.

I know it makes no sense yet, have patience!

Once you can say the items backward and forward twice (and this is a memory trick for any kind of studying) take a fifteen minute break, then say it again backwards and forwards. If you can, then you’ll never forget it…ever. That’s a common misconception about memory – that you have to use repetition over and over…but really, all you need is to learn it correctly, and be able to repeat it 2 times correctly…then once more after a fifteen minute break, and you’re set.

Alright, so your Roman Room is done. Now, take a list of ten things. If it’s sentences, condense them to a key word that will help you remember the rest. Then link the object in the room to the word you want to remember. The crazier the link, the better. Use SEA on both the object and the word on the list, and make them INTERACT. Once you do that for each object, repeat it twice, take a break, check your memory fifteen minutes later…and you’re good to go.

You can make a Roman Room out of ANY room, and you’ll never forget any of it. It’s insane! But it works.

Anyway, now hopefully I’ll never forget this. Supposedly if you can teach something, you’ve finally learned it…so. Yay. haha.

Sorry that was so ridiculously long. There’s TONS more in the book, you should really get it! It’s called Memory Power by Scott Hagwood.

Hope you all had a lovely 4th of July!!


“The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America.

I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival. It ought to be commemorated, as the Day of Deliverance by solemn Acts of Devotion to God Almighty. It ought to be solemnized with Pomp and Parade, with Shews, Games, Sports, Guns, Bells, Bonfires and Illuminations from one End of this Continent to the other from this Time forward forever more.

You will think me transported with Enthusiasm but I am not. — I am well aware of the Toil and Blood and Treasure, that it will cost Us to maintain this Declaration, and support and defend these States. — Yet through all the Gloom I can see the Rays of ravishing Light and Glory. I can see that the End is more than worth all the Means. And that Posterity will tryumph in that Days Transaction, even altho We should rue it, which I trust in God We shall not.”

Happy Independence Day!


(*subscribe to her, she’s LOVELY.*)