Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Kicking off the Year

Classes start to day at Cornell. We kicked things off in a big way yesterday with the annual Christian Fellowship fair BBQ. At this event we join with all of the other evangelical campus ministry groups to host a large outdoor picnic event. Each ministry sets up a table and we serve tons of free hamburgers and hot dogs to students who are walking by.
The main point of this is to give new students the opportunity to connect with the Body of Christ on campus. That is why for the past two years we’ve hosted this event in a prime location up on North Campus where all of the freshman live. The second reason is to have fun! Our hope is that this event brings a sense of fun and community to the opening week of school.

Though not every student readily admits it, I think the first weeks of school here are pretty overwhelming. Most students show up here not really knowing anyone. It’s not like a typical state school where you see people whom you at least recognize from your high school or some state wide athletic event. Cornell students are from all over the world, so adjustment here is hard and community is not a plentiful commodity.
I’d estimate that we fed around 600 students. It’s pretty hard to get an accurate count, but we consumed 740 pieces of meat! We ran out, so if we had more we probably could have fed even more, but overall it was a great turnout.
The weather was amazing, and we were praising God for that! The past few days before, a lot of opening week activities were being canceled or seriously hampered by the rain! We were praying for clear skies and sun, and the Lord gave us a dry day!

Our older students were able to meet and get to know a lot of freshman and hopefully they can connect them with our small groups.

On another note……Last year I built some cornhole tables. Cornhole is a game that’s basically like Horse shoes or Ladder ball –it’s one of those games you can play in your yard with one hand while holding a drink in your other hand. It’s not hard, so it’s great for getting to know people. Cornhole is basically a bean bag toss and the bags are filled with feed corn. The game is super popular out in the mid-west for sure, but it does not really want to fly out here! We’ve been hauling our tables to events for the past couple of years, and it seems like our kids are the only ones who are getting into it! It’s a riot. But yesterday –at the very end of the time –there were 6 or so students playing corn-hole! It was great and I thanked them for putting our boards to use for once!

Here's a funny video about the game of Cornhole.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Ruby turns 1

Ruby turned 1 on August 12th. It is hard to believe that a year has passed so quickly. We celebrated early while we were in Colorado so that some family could be there. We chose a “berry” theme because it was her “Berry First Birthday.“ We had pink cupcakes decorated with strawberries and several cousins to help eat them. On her actual birthday, we celebrated with our second family of good friends from church. Among those dear friends, was Sonia Needs, who helped deliver Ruby and is about to give birth to her own third child.
One Year Ago ……It was a Tuesday afternoon. I remember so clearly going to a tea party with my friend Sonia. Later that night we had a BBQ with other full time campus staff and I was having very mild contractions. We got home and about 9:00pm they were pretty regular. We put the kids to bed, and about 11:30, we headed to the hospital. I labored on my own for a couple hours. About 1:30 we had the midwife Molly break my water and 20 intensely painful minutes later she was born. We did not know the sex ahead of time and I remember being in shock for about 24 hours that she was a girl. I just kept saying, “I can’t believe it’s a girl. J, can you believe we have a daughter – that sounds so weird.’’ I remember all three boys parading into the hospital room with a small bouquet of flowers for me, and a bag of bean burritos from Taco Bell for dad. They were so excited to meet and hold their new baby sister. We were completely unprepared for a little girl so we did not have a name picked out. We left the hospital early, baby nameless. The next morning on our way to her 24 check-up, we decided on Ruby Brooke. She has been our little jewel ever since!!!