"He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young."
~ Isaiah 40: 11

Friday, July 27, 2007

Harry Potter and more....

So I am a Harry Potter fan as are about a trillion other peole. I decided that I wanted to read all the books over so that the details would be fresh when I read the seventh book. I started on book #3 and am now reading #5 - Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix. I can't wait to read the seventh book. My sister and mom have already finished it and said it was really good. But I don't want anyone to spoil it for me.
I enjoy stories and fiction. My favorite books are the Chronicles of Narnia because I love imagining about different worlds. I view Harry Potter as fiction and a story about a boy growing up and we (the readers) get to tag along on the wild ride through all of his adventures. My favorite character (well that is a hard choice) is probably Hermoine. I like her wit, intellect, and yet the fact that although she is smart she is cunning and adventurous. If she was a real person I would like to be her friend!!!! (I know I am weird!)
This week while I am reading Harry Potter, working, and doing all sorts of things to prepare for my trip. I met with a man named Mr. Chou who is from Taiwan and we had dinner together. He told me all sorts of things about Taiwan. It was really helpful to talk to a native of Taiwan to get a national perspective. He told what to eat and how to greet people. He also gave me a lesson on how to use chop sticks!!! Meeting and talking to him made me even more excited and ready to go to Taiwan. I have about two and a half weeks left of work and a little over a month left before I fly to Taiwan. So time is moving, slowly but surely. Before I know it I will be living in Taiwan. I want to enjoy my time in Augusta and not anticipate things too much.

I found these incredible pictures of Taiwan...


I am trying to enter into communion with God more. I tend to go through my day and forget about communicating with Him and reading His Word. God forgives my disobedient and defiance but yearns to have me in His presence and worshiping Him. I want to experience what it is to be completely human on earth and that is when I am worshipping God and glorifying Him. Pray that the Holy Spirit will transform me and give me the want to want to pray, praise, glorify Him, and read His Word.
- Until Next Time,
Amanda






Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Birthdays in July


In my family we celebrate two very important birthdays in July. Today was my sister Suz's birthday - the big 20. Earlier this month my month had a birthday. She is getting wiser and wiser in her years!!! I want to shout out to both of them. I love you all both, thanks for your support, love, and encouragement over the years. Here are some pictures of us celebrating ...

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Footage of Samantha Brown...

video

What a job. Floating down a river, relaxing, and getting paid all at the same time. All I can say is I somehow overlooked this major when I was in college!

My Dream Job...

If I could be anything in the world I would love to have the life of Samantha Brown.


She has the best job. She hosts many travel tv shows where she explores different cities and areas of the world. Many of her shows are called Passports to.... like Passport to Europe and Passport to Latin America. Plus, she stays in the most luxurious places and meets all sorts of incredible people. I want to be Samantha Brown but I would call my show Amanda's Amazing Adventures in (wherever I happen to go to that week)....


Well, I hope she is having fun. I sure am jealous but I will get a taste of her life this coming year.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Trip to the "Holy City"

No, I did not travel to Jerusalem or Rome but to Charleston, South Carolina which is, to my surprise, known as the holy city of the United States due to the many churches in the downtown area. This past Tuesday and Wednesday my mom and I packed our bags and headed to the lovely South Carolina coast for a two trip to Charleston. It was loads of fun. I wanted to visit Charleston before I went to Taiwan because it is such an interesting and historical city.

We did not have much time but we did do some fun things. On Tuesday night we went on a ghost and dungeon tour through the historic district of Charleston. The dungeon was built in the early 1700s. It was fascinating and boggling to try and fathom that people were imprisoned in this dark building 300 years ago. One reason I love history so much is that for me it never gets boring. The old buildings and artifacts tell the stories of the people that once dwelled and lived long ago. Gives me goose bumps - I know I am a nerd but a proud history nerd at that! Here is one picture of me quite frightened in the dungeon during the tour.
Mom and I also went shopping and during our venture and we found some potential available men for me to consider in the future!! Here are some pics.... Mom was sweet on the first fellow.
On Wednesday, we went to a plantation in Charleston called the Drayton House. The plantation is preserved and kept just as it might have been in the 1700's. The house has no furniture in it and contains most of the original wood and brick. It was hot and my mom, who loves AC, could not comprehend how people lived without beloved air conditioning. We decided that the person who invented this lovely machine needs a humongous gold star - we salute you. Some pictures of Drayton Hall.

All in all I had a lot of fun. I wish we could have stayed longer but it was a blast. I enjoyed spending some quality time with my mom. It will probably be the last time we have one on one time before I leave.

Life is getting more hectic by the minute. Missy, my middle sister, is making the all so stressful but exciting transition into the real working world. She is moving next week to Atlanta and will start teaching 4th grade this fall. Suzanne, my youngest sister, heads back to college a few weeks after that. Then I will celebrate my birthday a month early and say goodbye to my Target buddies. Then I have two weeks to get ready to head to Taipei. I have mixed emotions about the next year. I am utterly excited yet also in awe and shaking in my boots. I confess that I have been distant from the Lord lately and this is because I tend to get in the habit of getting so caught up in life that I forget that I belong to the Creator and that He is in control. I need to take time to converse with Him and read His word but most of the time I end up just relying on myself to get through the day and then it turns into weeks and months. Pray that the Holy Spirit allows my soul to become restless and broken so that I will prioritize my relationship with God at the top and not just when I need Him or when it is convenient.

Until next time,
Amanda

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Hooray, Hooray!!!!!!!!!!!!

Got a call from the Taiwan consulate and........ (drum roll please)
MY VISA HAS BEEN APPROVED!!!
HIP HIP HOORAY

Thanks to all that have prayed for this process and for me as I waited and dealt with all the stress related to this process. God is faithful and good. Last night I prayed a bold prayer that He would make the visa come in time if it was His will and then out loud I yelled "Lord you can do anything make it come this week if you so desire it." Wow. God is good.

- Amanda

On the flip side of vacation

Hey all....
Last week I joined my extended family at the beach in North Carolina. When I was little we would spend at least one week every summer at the beach with my relatives. I have many fond memories of swimming in the ocean and catching waves, of fishing with my uncle, and playing all sorts of make believe games with my cousins. We have many family traditions at the beach. One, in my opinion is quite humorous, is that we go to the fisherman's peir and eat breakfast. Now you have to picture this peir - it is pretty weathered and rustic. The women that serve the food at the peir have been their for what seems like forever. But if we miss eating at the peir during the week the vacation is not complete.

It was a great week. I got lots of rest. Worked on my tan - now I look the normal shade of white and not the pasty ghostlike white that I had acquired from working under flurescent lights. We had a cottage on the beach front and so the view was incredible. I love closing my eyes and listening to the waves crash.

It was hard to go back to work to say the least. I plan to put my two weeks notice in August 1st. I am so ready. Target has treated me well but I am starting to feel the "senioritis" bug. You know when you were a senior in highschool or college and all you wanted was "freedom" and you were ready to plunge into the next part of the journey of life. That is how I am feeling right now.

- Amanda