Monday, August 31, 2009

I'm Still Alive

Forgive my silence! I'm not dead! In fact I am very much alive. I arrived back in Germany on July 21st. Orientation for the new Res Life staff started on August 3rd. Students started showing up on August 23rd. Today is September 6th. Students have been here for two weeks now. I've been meaning to write a blog for a long, long time, and the planned title has shifted from "My Summer" to "I'm Back" to "One Week Left" to "They're Here" to "One Week In" and now I'm settling for "I'm Still Alive." Sorry about that.

But every time I sit down to start typing, I think, "How am I supposed to summarize everything that has happened since my last post?" Because students graduated and left. And I worked at BFA doing odd jobs for a couple weeks. And I went back home to the U.S. where I hadn't been for ten months. While I was there, I spent considerable time in Illinois, Tennessee, Georgia, and Wisconsin. I returned a month later and brought my brother and sister back to Germany with me. We spent a couple awesome weeks together traveling around Europe. And orientation and new students and so on and so forth. So really I just need to post a blog to break this stale three-month old ice, and then I feel like I can start writing more regularly again. Our new dorm parents Greg and Danielle have been updating their blog seemingly once a day or at least several times a week. I'm not joking. Here it is: Go to that link and read about all of the things I have been too lazy and negligent to tell you about.

Speaking of our new dorm parents, Greg and Danielle Storrs are doing a fantastic job in this role here at HBR. The guys are responding very well to them, and we're all having a great time together. I can't find a picture of our staff together, but here is a pic of the Storrs family that I just ripped off their blog.

We do not have any new RA's in HBR this year. This is not ideal. There was only one male RA who applied, was accepted, raised support, and arrived here at BFA. So there are four guy RA's as opposed to seven last year, and two of the boys' dorms are short one male RA. We just went from having four RA's last year in HBR to two this year. While we are handling this ok, it is still a bit of a transition. Please pray for the Storrs as they continue through this transition to a different role and a different culture and a different life. Pray also that we as a staff would be using our gifts to capably fill the positions we hold. Pray that we are getting rest and are not getting too stressed out.

Other highlights: On that first Tuesday after all of the students were here, the opening ceremony was held. This was just like last year. All of the seniors filed in holding the flags of probably 50-some countries.

This year the student body president comes out of HBR. He is a senior named Will, and he is seen here in the red tie preparing to give his speech and then delivering it.

We spent a long time getting the dorm ready to be lived in again, and now we're so glad that the students are actually back. Here's another good picture. This is one of our vans upon returning from a trip to the grocery store a few days before the students returned. Greg and Danielle were amazed at the sheer volume of food we bought and agreed that it felt like it should last all year long. But no, a lot of it lasted only the first week or so... We usually purchase at least one thousand dollars' worth of groceries each week.

That's all I'll share for now, but hopefully I'll be on again soon to share some more details from the past couple weeks. Thank you for reading. I am very excited for this new year of school! Please pray for my students and my staff and me! Thank you and God bless!