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Joey Alligier

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October 30, 2013

Passion in Pictures

October 30, 2013 | By | No Comments

Pictures capture a moment in time. A spot in history that can never be truly replicated. Snapping the obnoxious laughter from a more-corny-than-actually-humorous joke or catching the relief of a runner crossing the finish line is a fulfilling feeling. But it’s not fulfilling simply because the picture isn’t blurry. It’s fulfilling because there’s a story behind the picture. This story can impact the way you live because it molds the way you view life, people, and individual moments. Maybe it’s obvious and maybe it’s up to interpretation. For example, the corny joke is from a blooming friendship that is an answered prayer and the relieved runner has been training for months after forgetting what running meant.

There are numerous different things in life that can present opportunity for you to pour yourself into. For me, photography is one.

Here’s some of my “work”
(LOL, work? I was just being creepy, well like, kind of, never mind…)
Basketball

Such a Time Cam Mario Madsion Deal Kylee Dylan Dr. Spittal Pumpkin RunLook at life through a different pair of glasses; who knows, maybe it will be a perfect fit. Don’t be afraid to try new things. They can become the things that mean the most to you. It doesn’t matter how good you are at it! The passion is yours, do with it what you will and make it matter.

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

Allegra Vieux

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October 30, 2013

Mourning the Death of a Relationship: A word for the hurting, the healing, and the hating

October 30, 2013 | By | No Comments

man_crying

crying-girlBreaking up is hard to do.

I can’t take credit for that wisdom, but in my experience, it is true.

When a relationship ends, it’s almost as if a whole person dies. When 2 people come together and form a dating relationship, the dynamic of the couple is like a 3rd friend. When that time is over, it’s like the third friend has left on bad terms, or even died but no one wants to acknowledge it. It affects everyone around, even those who weren’t involved. The two newly single people can catch a glimpse of each other from across campus and everyone within the local zip code feels the tension. I think it has something to do with quantum physics, but I’m no science major so don’t quote me on that.

There are 3 major people groups involved in a break up, as listed below:

1. The Hurting: The one who got broken up with- maybe didn’t see it coming.

2. The Healing: The one who broke off the relationship.

3. The Hating: The friends of the couple, or highly opinionated acquaintances.

Keep in mind that in whatever I’m about to say, I’m on your side. I’m writing as the completely unbiased third party, and won’t give you half-truths. There are absolutely situations that one person is completely wrong, but this is from the stand point that things just didn’t work out. If you are in any of these positions, I feel for you. It’s aca-awkward. So let’s dive in and relieve the tension.

To The Hurting: Be glad you’re not in a relationship with someone that doesn’t value you for all that you’re worth. Last week I kind of put Bruno Mars on blast, but the dude also has good things to say. For example, I wake up to “Treasure” every morning. The whole song is a booster, but there is a line that is fitting for this subject.

You’re wonderful, flawless, ooh, you’re a sexy lady”

Lady or gentleman, you are wonderful. You are flawless. You are sexy! These are all Biblical. Don’t mistake a relationship fizzling as a reflection of your identity. The addition of a significant other does not change who you are. The absence of a significant other does not change who you are. I have no reason to lie. You are a dream come true. A masterpiece- Don’t get in your head and make everything a reflection of you. Start listening to the truth and tuning out the lies. To quote B. o. B., “You the whole package, plus you pay your taxes.” I know for a fact the first statement is true, and if the second is true, then you’re set for life.

To The Healing: Props to you for having the courage to end something that isn’t going any further. It’s never easy to let someone down, but the shorter the delay, the better. You may be concerned that your sig (or in this case ex-sig) is drowning themselves in tears or cookie dough ice cream, but don’t take that on. Don’t give yourself the credit of making or breaking someone’s life. Sure, this is painful for everyone involved, but you’re not the center of the universe, therefore, you cannot send anyone into an apocalypse. They will be fine and so will you. Be prepared though- this takes time. Don’t expect to go back to being friends within moments of ending it. That’s not good for you or them. Let them lay low for a while, and don’t force a conversation or moment to happen.

To The Hating: This blog is mostly for you. If you are a friend of a sig, then there’s no such thing as a third party. You probably have opinions. You probably have the best of intentions in supporting your friend. Sometimes, the lines of supportive and destructive get blurred. Things that start so positive end really horribly, like the riot in the movie, Hot Rod.

hotrod5If you’re not familiar with the movie, the main character, Rod, played by Andy Samburg, is trying to raise funds for his dying stepfather’s heart transplant. While on his way to the fundraising event, the whole community comes alongside him and walks together with him. The song “You’re the Voice” by John Farnham plays over the dialogue and it is truly an inspiring moment in a weird, satirical movie. (Side note- this is my FAVORITE movie ever! Watch it if you haven’t because your life will be CHANGED!) Then the inevitable happens: a riot breaks out and the whole moment is killed in a matter of seconds.

I’m going to go as far to say that this actually happens more often on campus than we acknowledge. For example, a couple splits and the girl and guy go back to their respective same gender friends. The said friends both start consoling The Hurting and The Healing, and come alongside them in support. Somewhere along the lines, the opposing party (usually, The Healing,) becomes the enemy and it is a battle to get as many people in your army as possible. Tearing others down won’t make anyone any higher. This brings me to my first point:

Blowing out someone else’s candle will not make yours shine brighter.

One time, it was one of my professor’s 50th birthdays. My friend Emily and I got a small cake for him with 50 trick candles on top. We waited for him to go to class and proceeded to light all of said candles with the intention of disrupting his class and having a good laugh. The plan backfired. We definitely disrupted his class, because the flames came together and created one HUGE flame measuring up to 2 feet in height and nearly causing the entire business building to burn down. We busted into class, sang happy birthday, and then he made a wish, and tried to blow them out. This was the moment when I decided I hated trick candles, because the flames came back with a vengeance. The Lord was on our side, as it was a rainy day, and we RAN through the first floor of Metz, burst outside, and launched the now wet candles into the bushes. The cake was covered in rainbow wax and riddled in holes.. DEFINITELY inedible.

What if we, took our candles, and put them together to burn bright, instead of using them like torches to lead a riot? Maybe this is corny, but what if we loved our neighbors by supporting the good instead of condemning the bad? When talking to our Hurting and Healing friends, let’s make a point of reaffirming their qualities instead of bashing the bad. Forget boyfriend bonfires and remember the candle fiasco: it will change your paradigm.

What do you do if your Hurting friend is bashing their Healing ex-sig? It’s easy to jump on the wagon and want to join in with what they are saying. This brings me to my next point:

Not everything is black and white.

Keep in mind that the side of the story you are hearing when your friend is upset is tainted and not the most accurate. Don’t take those statements to the bank. Reaffirm your friend, and keep their candle shining, maybe even relight the flame. Use your powers for good and not for evil.

Do we all remember when Brad Pitt and Jennifer Aniston were married? They were my favorite Celebrity couple second only to Nick Lachey and Jessica Simpson. I remember the day like it was yesterday: I was watching Newly Weds on MTV and the screen went black for a Public Service Announcement: that Brad and Jen called it quits. People went nuts! If people were in support of Jen, then they wore pink ribbons, but if they were for Brad, they wore blue ribbons. It originally had to do with Aniston backing Breast Cancer Awareness, known world wide for the pink ribbon, and Angelina Jolie with the blue ribbons for Child Abuse Awareness, and because Brad switched partners he switched causes or something… the point is that choosing sides and viewing things as black and white gets you no where except for down a destructive road leading to drama, and nobody wants that!

Real talk though- One of the things I think Christians miss the most is unconditional love. It’s a tough concept to grasp. This brings me to my final point:

It is possible to support a person without supporting their decisions.

We’ve all heard the stories about the engaged couple we don’t agree with and the battle among the friends on deciding if they are going to go to their wedding or not because they don’t support the marriage. Perhaps you’ve had to decide whether you’re going to a wedding or not, or maybe you’ve just had to decide if you’re going to buy Miley’s new song because it’s catchy but you don’t want to support her craziness. Similar principle.

I don’t preach often. But this is a subject that gets me hyped.

I don’t think Jesus died to give us the power to judge and condemn and make known our opinions. He died to give us life abundant. To not support someone because of their decisions is the farthest thing from the Jesus way of life. Jesus went to the cheating tax collector’s home and shared a meal with him. He hung out with the prostitutes and touched the sick and unclean. And what’s cool is, despite my decisions, regardless of my actions, and irrespective of my choices, He’s there for me and continues to support me. If He didn’t, that would be conditional love, and our gospel would look a whole lot different.

Let’s now apply this to a break up among our friends: You may not agree with The Healing’s decision to end things. That doesn’t give you the right to step in and assume the role of God by judging them based on their actions. This does not give you divine permission to hate them, start a riot and put people against them. That is called slander, and the Word of God is clear about this. You may not have agreed with The Hurting’s decision to date The Healing in the first place. That doesn’t give you the right to bash anyone. People of the Christian world: Can we please eliminate the expectation of meeting a certain living standard to start loving and accepting others? If this were the law we lived by, we would have no need for the cross, and I, personally, would be screwed.

I want to leave you on a lighter note- and I think this video below sums up everything nicely. Watch how Sophia Grace builds up Miley with the truth and just radiates with love for her. Let’s love both The Hurting and The Healing the way these little ladies love everyone!

Sophia Grace and Rosie on Ellen

If you made it this far, then well done!

Over and Out!

 

 

Britney Lewis

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October 29, 2013

A Mummy Like You

October 29, 2013 | By | No Comments

Blog world!

In the spirit of Halloween, I have written a short story for you to enjoy!

Remember, be safe this Halloween!

Till Next time,

Love,

Britney

supercompressed_halloween-header-no-text

A Mummy Like You- By Britney Lewis

  I grabbed my jacket, brushed my brown hair into a ponytail, and climbed out my bedroom window in hopes to avoid confrontation with my parents. I was on my way to Whisper Creek’s hill in anticipation to see Caesarion’s spirit at midnight in the mausoleum. Caesarion was the son of Cleopatra VII and Julius Caesar. When he was seventeen, he was murdered by the current ruler, Octavian, out of fear that he’d lose his place as king. Old and mummified, Caesarion’s corpse was discovered a few years ago, and the museum in my city was granted the honor to keep his body on display. It is said that the mausoleum, a few ways down the road from the museum, has Caesarion’s spirit attached to it; and at midnight, on All Hallow’s Eve, under the skylight in the mausoleum, Caesarion comes back to earth for exactly three minutes and forty-five seconds. I didn’t believe the rumors at first, but after hours of YouTube videos on my laptop, I decided to check it out for myself. Not only will I be able to see a seventeen-year-old Egyptian boy from 30 BC, but I could videotape the sighting and turn it into my school’s contest for scariest video of all time. Not to mention, if I won, I’d have enough money to buy the new iPhone I’ve been waiting for.

When I made it to the catacombs, on top of Whisper Creek’s Hill, I entered the building with a confident heart. I wasn’t afraid of the experience I would face in the near future. After all, my name was Adira, and when translated from Hebrew, it means strong.

 I pushed the doors open, and a powerful wind filled with debris slapped me hard in the face. I struggled to breathe through a few coughs, and I fanned the air in front of me. The inside of the mausoleum was small, dark, and cold, but the skylight wasn’t too far from where I was. Out of precaution, I grabbed the flashlight I had packed in my backpack and turned it on.

The longer I walked down the hallway, the more I felt like the stone walls were closing in on me. I clung onto my arms and focused on my breathing. Everything will be okay, I thought. I’m just overreacting.

The floor moaned and creaked as I tip-toed down it, and the blood in my heart began to pump twice as fast. My fear was growing with every step I took closer to the skylight.

When I arrived to the center of the mausoleum, I opened my backpack and retrieved my camera. I sat it up in the corner of the room, next to one of the old walls. From this angle, the camera would catch everything in sight.

I checked the time on my wrist before I started the stop watch. It was exactly midnight which meant that Caesarion would be here in any minute…

While I waited under the skylight, the bright moon shun throughout the center of the mausoleum, enlightening the place with its creepy luminosity, and the trees outside filled the room with a plethora of shadows that played with my imagination. I thought the trees were trying to tell me something with their scrawny arms casted on the walls. Maybe they were warning me to leave…or maybe they were nothing more than shadows, and my mind was playing tricks on me.

I rubbed my cold palms together and checked the time again: sixty seconds had passed. Was it me, or did the temperature in here drop below freezing? I could see my breath as my breathing kicked it up a notch, and I began to waddle from side to side to get the blood flowing through my veins again.

As I turned around to face my camera, I smelt something strange. The room reeked of rotting eggs and raw meat. Covering my nose, I checked the time again. This time, three minutes had passed.

I huffed. “This is so stupid.” I mumbled. Why did I decide to come up here anyway? It was freezing, this placed smelt of the dead, and there was obviously no mummy spirit anywhere!

Whilst I retrieved my camera, and shoved it back into my book bag, I heard the tiles creek in the hall behind me. I glanced over at it, squinting my eyes so I could see in the dark, but there was nothing there. I shrug my shoulders. Oh, well. If the mummy isn’t going to come, then he can stay in this filthy place forever. I thought, as I zipped up my backpack.

I reached for my flashlight before I entered the hall that would take me back outside, but it wasn’t in my back pocket where I had placed it. I then scrambled though my book bag, but it wasn’t there either. I must have left it on the floor, under the skylight.

As I reentered the center of the mausoleum, I was stopped in my place. I kid you not, under the skylight, holding my flash light, was the mummy of Caesarion.

My jaw dropped, and my eyes grew with mystification. Holy cow! Was this actually happening right now? Was I witnessing the spirit of freaking mummy?!?!

I took my back pack off slowly, trying not to draw attention to myself while I looked for my camera. Once I had the camera in my hands, it slipped through my grasp, creating a noise that was loud enough to let Caesarion know that he was no longer alone.

I looked up slowly, terrified that something bad would happen, and when my eyes reached the center of the room, Caesarion was no where to be found.

I sighed in relief. His three minutes and forty-five seconds had been up, so his spirit must have vanished. As always, I had the worst timing.

As I stuffed my camera back into my bag for the last time, I was knocked off my feet by a piercing yell coming from behind me. Caesarion had never left, and as I scrambled to get to my feet, he was charging toward me.

Flustered and afraid that I’d lose my life, I ran to the opposite side of the room—this was about the same time when I declared my idea, to come to Whisper’s Creek, stupid. I should have stayed at home like all the other sixteen-year-olds.I could be warm and cozy in my bed, but instead, I’ve decided to risk my life for a brand, new IPhone–this is so not worth it.

My knees knocked together, and I was trembling all over. Dang it, Adira. This has got to be the stupidest idea in all of humanity!

Cornered into a wall, with no place to run, the mummy came closer to me. In order to protect myself from this “thing,”  I began flinging objects at him. I threw my camera, the watch I had on my wrist, and even a granola bar, but somehow, he managed to dodge everything I threw. What the heck? He was like some supernatural, ninja-mummy of the living dead.

Caesarion’s lifeless body trampled toward me, and with the light of the moon, I could see his eyes glistening. They weren’t the eyes that I was expecting; they didn’t seem dead or corroded, they were tantalizing. I was finding myself, oddly, paralyzed by this mummy’s gaze. How was this possible? How could something dead seem so undead…?

With my life hanging on the edge, I knew I would die soon. Caesarion was a foot away from me with his arms hanging low, and his head cocked to the side. Before he came any closer, he unraveled the cloth from his body, unveiling an enchanting silhouette of a teenage boy.

I cupped my mouth with both of my hands. How could this be? How is his body still intact, and why…why was he so beautiful?

Caesarion took another step toward me, smiling at me now. His short, black hair was perfectly groomed, and his teeth were whiter than mine. The dimple in the side of his smile lines was perfectly carved into his cheek, and when he pulled his lips into a smirk, his wide, hazel eyes, grew with excitement; the light danced in them, and they seemed softer than the cotton in my pillow case.

Caesarion leaned toward me, and when he did, I no longer felt afraid. He looked helpless, and I couldn’t help but smile at his current existence.

Then he whispered, with an accent as thick the sea.  “Welcome back, Adira. I’ve been waiting for your return for almost an eternity.” He grinned, captivating my soul with every consecrated word he spoke.

Heather Engle

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October 28, 2013

The Weekend of All Weekends

October 28, 2013 | By | No Comments

Hello lovely friends,

Well as you can tell by my title, this weekend was pretty sweet. Probably one of the most eventful weekends i’ve had since I’ve been here. So let the pictures begin! :]

To start off telling you guys about this eventful weekend, I thought id let you meet one of my friends. Well, here he is. His name is Daniel. and yes, you’re right, he IS balancing on top of a metal bar in our laundry room, or as the door tells us, the “Launders.” daniel Maybe I should explain why this was happening. A couple of girls in our hall had their birthdays in the same week, so some of their friends decided to throw them a surprise party. This was his hiding place. room amandaLater that night, my roommate Amanda and I decided to go crazy and rearrange our whole room! This definitely was not a job we could do on our own. moving room

I know by the looks of Amanda and I you would have never guessed that we needed help with our bed because we are basically body builders, but in result of me almost being crushed by the bedframe, we called in the boys from the surprise party to help us with our bed! It was super nice of them to come over and help us, I wouldn’t have wanted to leave a party to go move a bed. But they did it anyways! so if you are reading this, thank you guys! :] We greatly appreciated it! bedandstuffs this is what my side of the room looked like before! finished room

so this is what my side of the room looks like now! ihopsign!

The next night, this was Friday, the wonderful bible study I am in decided to all go to Ihop for late night breakfast! I am extremely blessed to able to know every single one of them!

all of us at ihop

 blueberrry

Also, blueberry pancakes are the best pancakes EVER. pumpkin patch

That next morning some of the dorms here at MNU came together and had a dorm event at the Louiseburg Cider Mill!

half donut

They had delicious hot cider, and sider doughnuts! I maybe ate 3 of them….

  2013-10-27 00.02.47 This is Amanda (my roomie) holding up our pumpkin family. We went to Wal-Mart on Saturday night to get some baby pumpkins! We decided to make them into a pumpkin family. It was a wonderful time! 2013-10-27 01.01.24 Later that night, after we were all finished painting our pumpkin family, my friend Annie Wiskus comes into my room holding these glow stars! I was SO excited because I had been looking all over for them so I could put on my ceiling! (I know, I’m a little girl) But she finally found them for me and I could not contain my excitement! :] Now I can see the solar system when I go to sleep at night. Which is all I’ve ever wanted in life! Just kidding. not all I’ve ever wanted…but pretty close! :] So guys, this was my weekend! I hope this gave you a glimpse of the wonderful memories that can take place with a wonderful community of people such as the one I have here at MNU!

College..I love you.

-Heather Rose :]

Haley Raydo

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October 26, 2013

Looking Back In Time… 50 Years From Now

October 26, 2013 | By | No Comments

Hello friends!

Earlier today I was at lunch with my grandma, mom, and sister.  We just shared and talked about things here and there, when my grandma mentioned her 50th college reunion she had attended last night… 50th? My grandma was in my stage of life over 50 years ago! She even said, “There were so many old people!”  My grandma, definitely young at heart, is someone I have looked up to my whole life.  She is bold and carries the joy of the Lord wherever she goes.

My grandma playing piano with me back in the day.  My baby sister is sitting on her lap.

My grandma playing piano with me back in the day. My baby sister is sitting on her lap.

After going home, I wondered what my life would be like after 50 years.  Would I accomplish my goals and dreams? How do I make sure I stay on the straight and narrow?

I decided to call her and ask her some of the questions I had been asking myself.  I heard her sweet “hello” on the other end of the line, and immediately smiled.  She is just that type of person that can brighten your day.  I explained to her my request and she began talking about her reunion.  “People said nice things. ‘I accomplished this, and I did this, and achieved these dreams.’  They were good, but it was all about me me me and I didn’t hear anything that glorified God.”  I found that interesting as she explained more about the different classmates she had talked to.   “There is two ways to do things, Haley, you can plan out your life and do the things you want by your own strength, or you can live a life that follows God plans and that glorifies Him.”

This is a hard thing for me.  I have a problem with trusting God.  Most of us have heard the Proverbs 3 verses that says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.”  It is one thing to hear these words, it’s another to follow them to the ultimate extremes.

I decided to pick a word of the year this last January.  I had had a hard couple of months leading up to this, emotional and physical ups and downs that just kept piling up. I felt as if I was in free-fall, unsure of where I would end up.  But in January when I decided to pick a word, I heard the Lord strongly say TRUST, trust, trust.  It has been a rough road since January, but I felt God keep saying trust.  When I needed emotional and physical healing and had not received it as immediate as I had hoped–I heard the word trust.  When I was stressing about picking a college to attend–I heard the word trust.  When I was tired from working long days all week long–I heard the word trust.  It has followed me everywhere, and listening to my grandma has brought it back up again.

It may be easier at this point to plan out your own life, follow your own dreams, and use your own strength to finish it out.  It is a lot harder to trust.  But my grandma says she has had the best life.  “Nothing is more exciting than living for the Lord.”  I think the difference in where you’ll end up at your 50th college reunion is whether you trusted the Lord with your life or not.

As a personal challenge for myself and to you if so choose, is to not be those people at your 50th reunion that only talk about your own accomplishments.  Be the person that glorifies God, and lives the exciting life of trusting in His plan.  You can live it out now, starting by asking God to reveal His plans for your life.

“Looking back now, I see God’s hand in my life in every direction I turned.”  I asked her how one would get to a place 50 years from now and see the imprints of God.  She told me that it all starts with praying and asking God to reveal talents and gifts, and to choose daily to give the glory of God.  This may take a lot of trust, but it is worth it in the end.

Anyways I hope that is encouraging! Sometimes I think it is good to look at life from the future looking back, to evaluate where we are in the present.  Here are some verses to look at if you want to be encouraged through the Word about this:  Jeremiah 29:11, Romans 8:28, Psalm 46:10, Psalm 37:4-6, Hebrews 13:8, Matthew 6:25, Psalm 28:7, John 14:6, Psalm 91:1-16

Thanks for stopping by!

Haley

Follow me on tweeter and insta: @haleyraydoo   @mnublogs

Mario Flores

By

October 25, 2013

Here’s to one of my favorite peeps and my favorite season at MNU: Randy Cloud and Autumn

October 25, 2013 | By |

The following pics of trees and their leaves may not be interesting to those of y’all who are familiar with the Midwestern Fall seasons, if that’s the case with you, good for you that you got to live and experience such beauty for so long!!

Look at that color that contrasts so well with the tree right beside it!

Look at that color that contrasts so well with the tree right beside it!

So this photo and the one right before it were actually the first fall pics I took and I even sent home last year to my folks! Even though this wasn't so new to them:P

So this photo and the one right before it were actually the first fall pics I took and I even sent home last year to my folks! Even though this wasn’t so new to them:P Also, right behind the orangey pinkish tree is Lunn, that’s where I work! To the left of the photo is where I walked past in my first vlog on my way to Campus Center!

 

So here's pic1 of a red leaved tree right outside Weatherby chapel.

So here’s pic1 of a red leaved tree right outside Weatherby chapel.

 

Here's pic2 of that same tree right outside Weatherby. Friends  even the leaves die beautifully here!

Here’s pic2 of that same tree right outside Weatherby. Friends even the leaves die beautifully here!

 

Here's one in transition that's just outside Metz.

Here’s one in transition that’s just outside Metz.

Anyone else think this is shweeet!?

Anyone else think this is shweeet!?

And just a taste of winter with this frozen leaf!

And just a taste of winter with this frozen leaf!

 

Now some of you may be thinking, “This guy is just another typical California tree hugger…” Well… for the record I have never hugged a tree. But I am proud to say that I recycle paper!! Genesis 1:29-30, God had Adam and Eve take care of the earth with all its living creatures, so I’m secure in whatever judgments you make:P

 

Onto to Randy Cloud:

Here's Randy in Philosophy. He never hesitates to do things out of the ordinary in order to help us remember that which we need to.

Here’s Randy in Philosophy. He never hesitates to do things out of the ordinary in order to help us remember that which we need to.

In this case we were learning about Emmanuel Kant. Kant helped introduce people to the idea that it is our reason that interprets what our senses tells us regarding reality. Yes, I was paying attention

In this case we were learning about Emmanuel Kant. Kant helped introduce people to the idea that it is our reason that interprets what our senses tells us regarding reality. Yes, I was paying attention

As astonishingly intelligent Prof Randy is, he said that "I just grabbed the first marker available" It wasn't so bad having a sharpie mark on his forehead, but he was going to be meeting with some higher-up administration people that afternoon. I'm sure it went well regardless:P

As astonishingly intelligent Prof Randy is, he said that “I just grabbed the first marker available” It wasn’t so bad having a sharpie mark on his forehead, but he was going to be meeting with some higher-up administration people that afternoon. I’m sure it went well regardless:P

"I know where everything is in my office. If you moved something, I'd know." I still haven't gotten the courage to test his proud proclamation. Also my friend Tyler Hall is in this pic. We were both waiting for Randy (Our Advisor) to help us with scheduling next semester's classes.

“I know where everything is in my office. If you moved something, I’d know.”
I still haven’t gotten the courage to test his proud proclamation. Also my friend Tyler Hall is in this pic. We were both waiting for Randy (Our Advisor) to help us with scheduling next semester’s classes.

 

 

Randy: So I think I've figured out what I'll do to my office to allow room for more books. Me: Randy your crazy- Randy: I'm just going to remove the ceiling tiles and install shelves that will hang down. It'll be great. Me: Randy do you think you're a hoarder? Randy: No. I just really am a lover of books and have a hard time parting with them....which could lead to hoarding...

Randy: So I think I’ve figured out what I’ll do to my office to allow room for more books.
Me: Randy you’re crazy–
Randy: I’m just going to remove the ceiling tiles and install shelves that will hang down. It’ll be great.
Me: Randy do you think you’re a hoarder?
Randy: No. I just really am a lover of books and have a hard time parting with them….which could lead to hoarding…

IMG_0067

Here’s him not yet ready for a picture.

And here's Prof. Cloud, this time ready and posing with his "Miley Cyrus face".

And here’s Prof. Cloud, this time ready and posing with his “Miley Cyrus face”.

Joey Alligier

By

October 23, 2013

How bout’ them Chiefs?

October 23, 2013 | By | No Comments

I am a recently-turned 20 year old who has in the past few years taken a genuine interest in sports on a deeper level. As I came into my own in this sense I already had some teams that interested me. One of them was the good ol’ Kansas City Chiefs. This interest was definitely an inherited passion. My recollection is of my brother Brandon’s influence impacting me. In the time I have earnestly followed the team it has been a less than enjoyable experience. I would say that we have had quite a bit of talent, especially last year, just missing a few integral parts. With all of the struggle aside, the anticipation of this season continuously built  in the off-season; healthy players, Alex Smith, and a quality draft pick topped the list of excitement factors.

Obviously I am a happy camper at this point.
7-0
One of the best defenses
More points thus far than in the past year and a half
Best record in the league
And playing the Cleveland Browns on Sunday. 

If you don’t think the Chiefs are valid; fair enough. The schedule hasn’t necessarily been the American Gladiator-gauntlet of NFL teams and it’s still pretty early in the large scheme of things. However, here are a few reasons you should at least golf-applaud the Chiefs thus far. 

1) Andy Reid.
The Eagles were predicted to run the field last year and that hype faded quick. Kansas City had some hype before the season started, and let’s be honest, with the rep of KC a giant downfall wouldn’t have been a surprise. He is making it work and making it look good. Plus,
THAT STACHE THOUGH. And speaking of coaches, quite a few of the MNU coaches have been involved in this organization. OBVIOUSLY, they breed quality fellas.

2) There’s no “I” in team
Typically the KC defense would show signs of life and then the offense would wrap their hands around that neck and suffocate that same life. We were worn on the field and even off the field with injuries. However, now there is Alex Smith and two machines named Tamba Hali and Justin Houston, and we could even include Dontari Poe. The Chiefs are a well-rounded team that  is fully of developed players. Don’t a couple that run the show, but a team effort.

3) CHIEEEEEEEEEEFS!!
If you have ever been to a KC game, you’ll understand.
The atmosphere, even in the midst of a horrid season, is unmatched. The fans are loyal, even if they may not fill the stadium…. With the Chiefs being the 6th smallest market in the NFL it can be hard to be competitive. However, in a place like Arrowhead; which has become the loudest open stadium by having a decibel level of 137.7 in the 6th oldest stadium, the fans make a difference and the Chiefs have been relatively competitive very frequently. Basically, they are a classic organization with fans that have heart.

Those are just 3 reasons that the Chiefs should catch your eye. I’m not saying become a bandwagoner, but it sounds pretty sweet at this point right?

IF YOU EVER WANNA COME WATCH A GAME IN MY ROOM, FEEL FREE. JUST ANOTHER PART OF THE MNU COMMUNITY!!
and I guess you can come if you wanna talk smack too ;)

I have always been and always will be a Chiefs fan, but that’s a lot better and simply more fun when they win! However, my loyalty will stay.

Isn't it just beautiful?

Isn’t it just beautiful?

..Hopefully this doesn’t jinx them this weekend….

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

Allegra Vieux

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October 22, 2013

Relationship Advice From an Unlikely Source

October 22, 2013 | By | 24 Comments

 

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My beautiful engaged friend, Kyndra and her fiance Justin.

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My wonderful engaged friends Sam and Abi. Poster children!

My dear friends of MNU Blogs,

It seems like among high school and college aged students, relationships are the hot topic. I don’t know about you readers out there, but at least 75% of my conversations are about finding “the one” or dating or “talking” or something of the matter. This week alone I’ve had about 7 conversations about dating and relationships and it’s only Tuesday.

I find myself pondering the question: Why are these people coming to me? I’m not qualified to answer their questions and here are some of the reasons why I’m probably the worst person to come to:

  1. I’m happily single and feel that college should be about spending as much time with as many people as possible before we leave. (Side note: I am a founding co-president of MNU’s unofficial evangelical organization TSFL: Team Single For Life.)
  2. I don’t usually know anything about the relationship at hand. Most of the time, I don’t even know the significant other (from here on referred to as “sig,”) so I am completely one sided.
  3. I am blunt. I tell things like it is.  I’m not good at telling people what they want to hear when it’s not true.

On the other hand, maybe all of these things actually qualify me to give advice more. I don’t waste time in dating relationships if I know they’re not going anywhere. I am 100% PRO whoever I am talking to (we all need one of those friends.) And, I don’t waste my time sugar-coating the facts. Just today I was talking to a good friend of mine and she said, “Hey, you should write a blog. You have such good advice.” Well, it’s Tuesday, so here we go.

May I present: Relationship Advice From an Unlikely Source: The completely blunt unbiased third party advice you’re looking for in your relationship.

I remember when I was 16 and visiting some friends from my hometown. I asked my BFFL Kimberly about another one of our friends. “Is she going out with that guy??” and the words she said back to me are forever burned into the front of my mind. “Well, they’re talking.” I asked her to explain what this meant, and she said something ambiguously alluding to not officially dating but talking to each other exclusively and occasionally going out on dates. This brings me to point #1.

1. Talking is Dating, so call it what it is.

People act like if they say they are dating someone, then they are forever tied to them and have to marry them. NEWSFLASH: that would be called an engagement.

Hey, speaking of dating, whatever happened to guys asking girls out on dates? You know, the good ole fashioned dinner and skating at the local roller-rink? With the advances in technology, it seems like nowadays people are texting every minute of the day until one day a photo album on Facebook shows up called “I SAID YES!!!!!” This brings me to point #2.

2. If you aren’t going off campus together, you’re going nowhere together.

Let me speak to the ladies for a moment: You are worth a guy taking the time to ask you out on formal dates. You are worth a guy not being worried about what people will think if his partners in crime see him with you. He should be proud to be with you! Enough of this ridiculous virtual relationship stuff. Demand the best because you ARE the best. And you don’t have to take my word for it: the Bible spells it out. Check it out sometime. And if Jesus thinks you’re to die for, then whoever you’re with should too!

And to the men: it’s not your fault that you’re being given the easy option of emojis and snapchats instead of face to face interaction. Heck, if I were in your shoes, I’d choose free over wining (grape juicing?) and dining any day. I’m so sorry that we have lowered our standards and basically said “you’re never going to be able to treat me as a mature adult, so I’ll make it easy for you.” We’ve trained you that virtual relationships are okay, and I would like to personally apologize on behalf of Christian women in America that we have killed the chase, made it easy, and are readily waiting for no effort on your end at all. Do us a favor, and don’t settle for someone who says you’re incapable of wooing us over. It’ll make you better and make us shape up to be the women Christ calls us to be.

I’ve talked to some friends recently that have been torn because they are in either a pseudo-relationship or a full blown committed relationship, but the feelings aren’t really there. They are afraid to leave because they fear “being forever alone” and that if they don’t stay in the relationship, then they won’t ever find anyone better and they’ll die alone. I’ve also talked to singles who are not in a relationship and are depressed that they aren’t planning a wedding with their graduation party. This leads me to my next point:

3. Quit being ridiculous and start being honest.

It is absolutely ridiculous that people fear the gift of celibacy. Let me reassure you that if you crave a relationship, you probably don’t have it! PS- You are 20 years old. Marriage is a commitment FOR LIFE. The national average for marriage is in the 27-29 year mark. Average life expectancy for Americans is 80 years. You have 60 years to find someone… And can we even call it finding someone? Doesn’t God have this world in His hands? Can we start trusting that He has our best interest in mind and will give us the people in our lives that we need? I’m no ministry major, but I’ve been to a lot of chapel and church services and I think that’s Biblical. And if you’re not feeling it, you’re not feeling it. That’s the most admirable reason to break off a relationship IMO (in my opinion.) If your sig isn’t what you’re looking for, or if the feelings aren’t there, then let them go because chances are you’re not the one for them either. Literally, no one can reprimand you for being honest about your feelings. They can reprimand you for ignoring your feelings and then having them all come up later like a volcanic eruption. That’s when this question gets thrown out: “Why didn’t you tell me you felt this way? What else have you been withholding?” Nip that sucker in the bud and move on.  And in the spirit of honesty, nobody likes confrontation. Get it over with so you can stop being consumed with it.

Researchers estimate that 40-50% of first time marriages end in divorce, and 60% of second marriages end in divorce or permanent separation. As you can probably guess, it’s time for point #4.

4. Don’t be a statistic.

In the words of Bruno Mars, “It’s a beautiful night, we’re looking for something dumb to do. Hey baby, I think I wanna marry you.” Don’t sit on the other side of the computer and act like you’ve never danced to that song. I don’t blame you. It’s so catchy! But if marriage becomes an item on your list to check off, it’s time to reevaluate. Mars goes on to say “If we wake up and we wanna break up, that’s coooooool…” Friends of the United States of America: If your sig says or alludes this to you, it’s time to break up with them right then and there. More importantly, if you have this thought in the back of your mind, you’re probably not ready to make the commitment of holy matrimony. Maybe instead of listing getting married and starting a family a part of your 5 year plan, you should set other goals and let The good Lord surprise you with the desires of your heart. It will happen when you are least expecting it, so stop planning for it. You ain’t no Kardashian. Start loving where you’re at. Take advantage of the short amount of time you have as a single young adult and travel! Do things that take you out of your comfort zone and grow as an individual!

Once upon a time I had a friend going through something. For the sake of the story, we’ll call her Nancy. Nancy was like, IN LOVE with this dude, we’ll call him Rob. Rob was that guy in high school that everyone loved because he was awesome and everyone secretly hated because they wanted to be him. Nancy was your average girl next door, but obviously with a great sense of humor because she was friends with me. One day, Rob started taking interest in Nancy. He asked her to go out on dates, and then after about three weeks they made it FBO (Facebook Official.) Sounds like a classic romantic comedy? Well that’s because it was. Except Nancy became this alternate quiet opinionless person around Rob because she was afraid that her bold personality would scare him off. She didn’t feel comfortable around him. This leads me to my final point:

5. If you’re not having fun, then the relationship is done.

Yes, relationships are work. But the payoff should be worth it! If you can’t be yourself, you’ll drive yourself crazy. Don’t be a people pleaser. Sure, be agreeable and kind. And yes, I get the Biblical principle about women submitting to their men and husbands loving their wives, but I also understand that Jesus calls us to be BOLD and take on the courage of a lion! Enjoy being yourself, because baby, you were born this way. Annnd enjoy your sig being themselves too! They should LOVE your personality, and if they don’t, then they are missing out for real. I’m not required to tell you that because I’m not your mom or your best friend. You can trust my words. Likewise, you should LOVE their personality, and if you don’t then someone else will. It’s not your responsibility to give someone the pity laugh every time you turn around. If you’re anything like me and grew up in the protestant evangelical church, then I’m sure you’re familiar with the Newsong/Natalie Grant song “When God Made You.” (You can reminisce here.) With all due respect, can we please stop making marriage the end-all be-all? Let’s live life to the fullest and stop being so concerned about something that Jesus already has taken care of!

Keep these things in mind and you too will end up being in a beautiful engagement photo like the ones above.

Stay tuned for the flip: break up advice! (Dun Dun Dun!!!)

 

Over and Out!

 

 

 

Britney Lewis

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October 22, 2013

So you wanna teach in a small town, eh?

October 22, 2013 | By | 2 Comments

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As an English education Major…as an education major, period, there are a lot of options to choose from when it comes to where you want to teach. I like to divide them into a few categories: suburban, rural, inner-city, and top-notch schools (which can be found in either of the other categories.)

Growing up in the inner-city, I’ve always felt it was my calling to return back home when it was my time to teach. I’ve consistently felt the urge to give back to my community, to show those students love who don’t always receive it at home, and to build relationships there.

I have always known where I want to be, as far as teaching-wise, but I had to be sure. Thus, I found myself venturing off, with the education department, to the South West, Kansas (a good 6 and a half hours away…with a few stops, of course.)

We stayed at a Comfort Inn. It was nice! And it was my first time in a hotel!

We stayed at a Comfort Inn. It was nice! And it was my first time in a hotel!

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As a sophomore, this was a little out of my comfort zone. I haven’t been accepted into the education program, and yet, I was attending a Common Core* meeting with hundreds of other teachers. It was bananas! I could imagine being right there–in that audience full of teachers- in a few years when I receive my teaching diploma and graduate from college. I wasn’t anywhere close to home, but, somehow, this felt like home to me.

A speaker from the Common Core meeting.

A speaker from the Common Core meeting.

I’m not gonna lie, I hadn’t been there for more than three hours when I, along with two other students, were offered a job. We were all stunned. This guy didn’t even know us, but he was willing to take down our name, number, and set up an interview with his superintendent. Sadly, we had to pass up the job offer because, frankly, neither one of us were in the position to be teaching other people.

Surprisingly, I liked the rural town a lot. The longer I stayed there, the quicker I found myself adjusting to the life style (well, sort-of.) On the last day, in the middle-of-nowhere-Kansas, I had the chance to tour a few different schools, and for a short moment, I could almost in-vision myself staying in that little town forever.

Nothing but land for miles!This is a picture outside my hotel. We stayed in a small town called Garden Cityphoto(7)

 

The principles, and superintendents were awesome, and I wouldn’t mind working side-by-side with them. They even joked of marrying us off if I, or any other student, came to work there. They said they were joking, but we all knew they were quite serious about it. If I could keep a fantastic teacher in my school district, I’d find them a spouse, and keep them in my town forever, too! ;)

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But every rural district has its pros and cons

Pros:

-People are friendly (But seriously, I’m not even kidding. They welcomed us with open arms.)

-There’s land everywhere

-Class sizes aren’t too large. (There’s less distractions, and easier to get through an entire lesson plan.)

-Christianity is openly communicated. (Which is stinkin amazing!)

-The cost of living was cheaper. ( I was practically sold on that alone. Two-hundred dollars for rent–that’s heavenly.)

-It’s easier to build relationships with students.

-Great benefits.

Cons:

-There’s too much land. (If land sickness was possible, I probably would have caught that.)

-Some class sizes are way too small. (At an elementary school I had visited, the fourth grade class had four girls. Just imagine if half of your class was gone with the flu.)

-It smelled like animal everywhere!

-It was too far from home.

-teachers had extra duties. (such as coaching, or teaching after school classes, etc.)

 

 

After processing this information, I knew, for sure, that a small town wasn’t for me.

By the end of the trip, I missed the city so much, and once I was back in Olathe, I couldn’t imagine being in a small town ever again.

The rural setting isn’t for everyone–it definitely wasn’t for me–but I’m glad I had the opportunity to do such thing. The trip opened my eyes to new ideas, and I was given the chance that many other students don’t have.

If the opportunity to travel with the education department every arises, I suggest you take it and run!

It’s almost a one-in-a-lifetime kind of thing!

As always, talk to you next week!

Love,

Britney.

 

*The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a U.S. education initiative that seeks to bring diverse state curricula into alignment with each other by following the principles of standards-based education reform

For more Common Core info: http://www.corestandards.org/

Heather Engle

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October 21, 2013

A Warm Welcome Back

October 21, 2013 | By | One Comment

Hey friends!

So midterms have come and gone and this weekend we finally got a break! So I decided to take a trip back home! It was really nice to finally see my family and friends after a few weeks. It was also my brothers 22nd birthday, so his girlfriend threw him a surprise party! I thought I’d share with you some pictures of my endeavors this weekend and also some pictures of my family and friends! oliver being cute This is my really cute dog. His name is Oliver and he is the best dog ever. My heart was overjoyed when I saw him. :]

katie and libby and i

These are my two little sisters, Libby (left side), and Katie (Middle)! I know, they are adorable!

zac and syd

These are my two friends, Zac and Sydney! They are pretty wonderful. I saw them the first night I got back home and we went to this place called the Donut Whole. They have the best donuts, ever.

aimee collage

This is my lovely friend Aimee. She likes to take selfies on my phone, so I decided I would be nice and let the world see her pretty face. :] She is so beautiful, on the inside and out.

aimee and i!

Here’s a better one of us both!

rachel and i 2

Rachel is my other lovely friend! She’s pretty wonderful. :]

Even though this weekend was super awesome and I always love visiting home, the best part was coming back and being welcomed by my super awesome friends that I’ve made here at MNU. When I pulled into the parking lot I saw a few girls sprinting at my car like they were about to attack me or something. It was wonderful. They actually did attack me, in the best way, in the form of hugs and screaming. I was definitely overjoyed in that moment. I am so blessed by the awesome community here at MNU and I know that these friends that I am making. I know that they will definitely be lifelong friends that I will never forget.

Thanks for reading!

-Heather Rose :]