Thursday, December 17, 2009

here it is...

I have never had such a busy, hardcore term then the one that I finished last week. I worked hard, striving for a great grade point average. - "great" for me is 3.5, I have never done well in school - I was diligent for the first three weeks, always doing homework and staying a little ahead of my classes. and then, Pirates of Penzance hit, and it hit hard, and didn't stop hitting me for 7 strait weeks. Seven strait weeks of spending for then 20 hours a week in rehearsals and performances. I tried, I really did, to keep up. But everyone else seemed to be doing better then me at juggling everything. It wasn't until last week that I realized why I couldn't do everything. 

Her. She was my problem.

We would get up and rush out the door. She would go to work. I would go to school. I would finish classes and 4 and rush to get some homework done and find dinner. She would get off work at 6 and I would be going to night rehearsals. afterwards I needed to be doing homework, but instead I would be rushing home to spend 20 minutes with her before she went to bed. 

Yes. I can't juggle school, a performance, and a wife. and looking back on it, I am ok with that. 

I love my wife, and I made it through this term because of her. The little time we spent together at night is what gave me the strength to get up in the morning. 

Thank you, my love. I would give up my world to spend an extra 20 minutes a day with you. 

I love you.

Friday, December 11, 2009

A Long time.

I am so sorry for not doing this earlier. I have had a long term at school and there are many things I was to talk about! Today, my first day of freedom from finals, I am doing mind numbing things. i.e. Halo o.d.s.t. I promise to write lots during this break, but for now I do not want to think! 


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Let me tell you why...

My amazing wife...
...that is simple, because she is. Last night I had an excruciating 51/2 hour rehearsal. I call her and complain that I am tired, hungry, grumpy, tired and hungry. In 30 minutes she was at my dressing room with 4 homemade burritos and coke. She had not only brought me food but she brought enough to share with a few others. What is even more amazing is that she brought her own special stash of coke. She loves coke, and last night she chose to share it with the entire cast. 
I told you she was awesome.

I'm tired...
...well, last week Vanessa had Swine flu and that came with a violent cough. She would wake up in the middle of the night coughing and I would wake up with her. Saturday night at a quarter til 7 we decided to take a trip to her parents because it was my sister's-in-law birthday. that night we shared a twin bed, needless to say we didn't sleep very well. Sunday night we got to bed late and then I had to get up at 5:30am for my weekly meeting, and then, to top it all off, I had a 51/2 hour long rehearsal last night. 

I'm stressed...
... I'm tired, broke, and can not find my music. (which is in a small athletic style, drawstring backpack, in case you see it) I am going to the last place I can think of that might have my music as soon as I am done with this blog. 

I'm hopeful...
... God is good. He has gotten me through worst places before! 

My mother just called, she just told a story of her own lost music. Well it wasn't music, glasses. She said she couldn't find them for 3 weeks. When had been getting headaches everyday and finally couldn't take it anymore. She said she called out to God and asked him to find them. immediately a glimmer of light caught her eye and she saw them. They on top of our play house in the backyard where she took them off once while she was playing with us. God show me where my music is!

Have a good day, and if you want come to the "Pirate's of Penzance" this weekend or next here at OSU. 

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Alex walked in the door and I forgot what I was going to write about.

It is interesting how the loss of something or someone brings the reality of their/its importance to your life. Some boyfriends don't understand the true treasure they have until it walks away. You won't realize the importance of cell phones in this culture until you try to spend a day with out one. I never appreciated my '99 Subaru Impreza until I grew from 6'2" to 6'4" and could no longer really fit in it, (Now I drive a focus).

I have had two of these realizations recently. 

1. A very important one, health insurance. You don't really realize the importance of it until your wife gets Swine Flu and you have to take her to the emergency room. At that point you truly understand the importance of insurance.

2. The importance of my music. I have completely lost it. the bag that it was in  carried all my choir music, an oratorio anthology, and my Elijah score. =$150. And I have this weird feeling, like a void is in my life. That bag carried a lot of who I am in it, and I am also scared I will have to replace all of it. 

I hope you realize the super awesomeness of the things you have the people around you! 

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

So as you may know, I am studying at Oregon state University pursuing a degree in choral music education. You want to know what job that degree will get me in next year. none. In fact the only thing I can do with this degree is to go back to school. yeah... OSU sure knew what they were doing on this one, "Here come to our school and get a degree! That will allow you to come back again and get another degree and we will charge you a lot more money!" amazing. I fell for it. 

I am looking forward to next year IF I get into grad school. Yep, me being the fantastic student I am might not have the grades to make it next year. SWEET. so what am I going to do with this degree I will get??? not to mention the booming workforce needed for this super amazing economy. 

all I have to say is, thank you welfare! you pay for my degree since I won't have a job next year. 

I really want to teach music. it is such a vital part of live! whole cultures have changed due to it. I'll talk more about music later. 

Have a great day!

Monday, November 2, 2009

What it is to Live - a cold monday morning

I was at a Thomas Hampson performance a couple of weeks ago - he is a marvelous performer! During his recital he talked about poets. I have never really liked poetry, and I think it is because I haven't ever understood it. But Thomas had a really great perspective on poets that he shared with the audience that night. He said that poets tell you in words what it is to live. 

I loved that! it pretty much blew my mind. 

I have thought a lot about that night ever since. What is it like to live right now? What can I tell people 100 years from now about life today. First off I acknowledge that I will never be a poet, and I don't want to, I just like thinking about it. 

I could tell people that in 2009 people rarely talk to each other. connections are maid through digital conversations. There is a void in most people because of this. I would share that these are the times when americans started second guessing about the greatness of the USA. and maybe started second guessing about what it meant to be great in this world. It is a time when fans didn't cheer for their team but now cheer for individuals on different teams. - Someday I will write about my thoughts on fantasy leagues and how they are destroying the greatness of pro sports. Or what about how divorce is not only the norm but the expected out come of marriage- an effect of selfishness and self-gratification which is the absolute most important ideology of this day.

This is a tough question for me, what it is to live now. How would I express that fear I have because I have invested all this money into education and now I might not have a job when I get done? How would I express that I get weird looks when I say that I am married, as if I have made a huge mistake? 

Poets, I charge you: Share what it is to live here and now so the generations to come will be able to learn from us. They need to be able to better themselves by looking at our mistakes and our qualities! 

May God bless you on this cold Monday morning!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

In case you haven't noticed

Corvallis- in case you haven't noticed, fall is here. (Cold, wet, and dark)

I really enjoy the fall. I like the rain, the leaves, and I really like football! I only have one complaint about fall...

I HATE GETTING UP IN THE DARK!!! First off, your alarm goes off and the first thing I think is, "it is still night, why is my alarm going off?" snooze. alarm goes off again, "Fine, I'll get up." and once  finally do get up, the world should reward me for my efforts, but instead mister sunshine gets to sleep in. So I stumble all around my room, stub my toe on the dresser then step on an upside down high heel, and while all this is going on there is a vigorous "THUD, THUD, THUD, THUD, THUD" in the door way as my over eager, ADD black lab and his 3 foot tail await for me to go play with him outside. I never play with him in the morning, and the dog knows that, it's like he thrives on rejection. Which kind of reminds of a good friend of mine, J. 

When J wasn't trying celibacy, that is how he was with girls. Always waiting at the door, wagging his tail, and waiting to be rejected. Now he is taking a higher path.

Once I do get up, I love the mornings. 

There is now light outside and the world is slowly awaking, so I say to you, guten morgen! 

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Morning ... a rare poem

the air; such power, such depth, so sharp. 
yet it caresses my cheek
to breathe brings life, fulfillment, and a sharp pain to my nose
I love that feeling, the first morning breath of cold autumn air 

it's a rare opportunity
to be the lamb.
while the Lion caresses you with His air

Good Morning!

It is Saturday morning ~ 6:45ish. and I have been looking forward to this all night! For me writing these blogs is therapy, and I need a lot of therapy after last week!

So I ask you, how do we find joy in our lives?

I got to listen to a conversation last night that frustrated me and made me think last night. My friend N is in a long distance relationship and is struggling to the decision of whether or not the relationship is worth the stress of the very long, and very far distanced struggles that come with a long distance relationship. He was talking to my friend M, and they were discussing the idea of happiness and how that feeling alone should determine length and life of a  romantic relationship. M had 2 quotes that struck a chord with me and were similar to this, "You are the only one that will always have your back." And then, "If you can't make yourself happy, then you can't make anyone else happy." 

"Is that true?" I kept asking myself. Then I remembered a couple of things...

1. Jesus will always have my back! always.
2. Happiness is a feeling, but Joy, joy is real.

You see if a person only cares about what will make him/her happy, and happiness guides there whole life then that person will never be in a solid place. Feelings come and go. When M said that you have to do what makes you happy before you can make anyone else happy, she was trying to say that a person needs to be full, as in not lacking, before they commit to someone. The problem is that there is nothing in this realm that will fulfill a human. That is the way God intended it. 

In many ways I agree with M, but it is not happiness we need as humans, it is Christ. When we allow Christ to be our identity then we will be made full and that is where we can find Joy. What is so amazing about joy? When your said, frustrated, angry, happy, ecstatic, and everything else in-between, you can still have joy through Christ. 

That is something the world doesn't understand. When our identity is that of Christ and not personal happiness, we can lay parts of our lives for others, because we are fulfilled by Christ, not by pleasures of this world. and laying down your life for someone is the most beautiful display of joy in the world. 

It is a beautiful morning up on the mountain top, clear sky above me, fog in the valley below, God is good. May you find joy in Him this day!

Friday, October 23, 2009

It's..... almost perfect.

I needed to get away this weekend, I just didn't know it. I have never been so angry about going on a retreat then I was on the drive to "Anderson Lodge." I complained about leaving my wife for the weekend, giving up my weekend for the choir, how far away it was, and that I had to leave my wife for the weekend, I was especially mad about that one. I had 4 tests last week - hence the lack of a blog- and didn't hardly see my wife, and now I am spending the whole weekend away from her. 

Then I got out of the van, walked about ten feet, and stumbled upon the view. The view I am looking at right now. I am sitting on a porch protecting me from the light rain, on the top of a mountain over looking a beautiful valley. The view is one of those that proves there is a God: It is one of those that immediately brings you to worship, instantly sparks emotions of romance, instantly and timelessly ... perfect. 

It is almost perfect. What it is lacking is a beautiful Vanessa cuddled up next to me wearing sweat pants and one of my long sleeve shirts drinking a cup of hot cocoa. and there is an obnoxious group of people that won't shut up at the other end of the porch.  They are kind or pissing me off, but they don't know what they are messing up. They aren't grasping the true blessing the view is, they have no idea of the power of God's beauty, they just don't get it, but its not their fault. 

I need some therapy this weekend - which comes in the form of blogging - so you will here plenty of me this weekend. 

May you take the time to allow God's beauty to effect you this weekend. and ... be changed. 

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

a shot in the dark

My good friend Kyle introduced me to this beautiful drink a couple of years ago. I am enjoying while I prepare for a long day which is sitting in the middle of a really long week! In the next 48 hours I will have taken 3 midterms and be heading to my 4th. I don't mind tests, it is just going to be a hard week. 

Yesterday I got up at 5:30 in the morning to meet my brothers at 6. I can't think of a better way to start the week! We meet at 6, I make breakfast and then spend time confessing to each other. This what is called community. Being able to be completely open with your closest friends and having them pray for you, and in return you pray for them. If you have never experienced REAL community then start your own 6am group! 

Then I attended classes from 8-12 at 12 I went to my rocks for jocks class and the sub. prof. started reading out of the book for a lecture, I quietly and respectfully, walked out with my friend Nickoli. We grabbed lunch and had a fantastic conversation. Nick is one of my closest friends, and he is LDS. We were talking about Sunday, well as usual, he was asking questions and I talking, and we found that there are some unique truths that the LDS and the Church if Christ(me) have in common. Nick informs me that one of the founding fathers of the LDS churh was a Church of Christer??? I found this really interesting; a member of the church who now condemns the LDS church to hell at every level was a founding member. Irony, got to love it. 

anyways, after more classes and a nap I went to my choir rehearsal, it was a very successful! During our break my wife, who stayed home sick, called to tell me that my two dogs tried to make friends with the neighborhood, not so friendly, skunk. Yep, SKUNK! needless to say, Vanessa spent two hours bathing the dogs, and lighting candles all around the house with no success. I hate skunks. 

Thursday, October 15, 2009

I had a voice lesson today, and it went very well. I am learning an aria from "Elijah" by Mendelssohn. I like Mendelssohn because his first name is Felix which I think is one of the coolest first names anyone could have. Oh, and because of his music. anyways... back to Elijah.

This Oratorio - a biblical story told through singing - is very intriguing to me. Felix does a wonderful job of portraying all the emotions of a guy that had a really hard life. 1st God calls him to be a prophet, and prophecy comes with the price tag of a warrant on your life. 2nd God says that Elijah is going to stand up to the King, another life threatening situation. 3rd God sends a pillar of fire to prove He is God and then Elijah has all the false prophets annihilated, but the King likes the false prophets so he puts a bounty on Elijah's head. Then Elijah goes into a huge depression and asks God to take his life away. 4th God reminds Elijah that he is in the protection of the almighty and later, takes him to heaven in a fiery chariot. 

Like I said, tough life for Elijah, but it makes me think; what if I was called by God, would I go?
Could I through away my willingness to live, throw every relationship I have away, stand up to the most powerful people in the world? nope I don't think I could. But I want to have that kind of faith.

What is interesting is that Jesus Christ has asked me to be just as different. To stand up to wrong, love the weak and to show love even if that means losing my friends and family, standing up to power, and having my life threatened. 

I want to be more like Elijah and less like me.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

I hate media and the swine flu

so everyone is freaking out about the swine flu - stop.

here are my possible causes of death that I am more worried of...

1. agitate the wife - definitely more dangerous then the flu
2. peeing on electric fences
3. cow tipping
4. driving a Prius (death by embarrassment)
5. running from Wiley Coyote and tripping on to a cactus (ouch)
6. death by falling space poop - (it can happen, ask NASA)

Comment and add your own!

I would like to say that I am very paranoid about the cold, but only because I am a singer.

see ya later

Monday, October 12, 2009


Good morning! it is Monday and I feel good, that is weird, I know. so this might get really addicting, but I am having fun.

today I wanted to talk about me in the here and now, I don't want to reminisce. So who am I?

Well I usually answer that by saying I am a Christ-follower. Not a christian, not religious, I just want to look and act like Christ. (that sounds like a groupie) but the truth is I fail at that most of the time. I should get depressed that I can't obtain my number one goal in life but then Jesus had to throw in this thing called grace. I love grace. 

Grace gives me the ability to get on a Monday morning and smile. 

so I am a grace-filled, Christ-follower-failure. cool huh?

I am also a husband. I want to believe I am a frickin good husband, but the truth is I suck at that too. (if read the first one, I suck as a human-being remember). luckily, I am married to an amazing women who doesn't put up with any of my crap and once I admit that I am an _____ fill in blank with any sort of stupidity, she is very quick to forgive. 

I am madly in love with my wife. 

This is my 6th year as an undergraduate student. You should start calling me Van. (If you don't know what that means, you were never REALLY a college student.) I am pursuing a degree in Choral Music Education, which means I am going to school so that I can be unemployed, thanks OBAMA, - I hope you enjoy that Nobel Peace prize you got for your agenda.  - sorry, carried away.  I am not exactly sure of what I want to do when I grow up, it will either be a professional fisherman, high school choral director, professional soloist, or a stay at home dad. ( I highly doubt my wife would leave our future children in my hands on a daily basis) (my favorite blogging tool is the parenthesis)

I also have two insane children/dogs. OK technically they are dogs but they fill the children role for me. the problem is that they don't fill that void in my wife's life. (another topic, another time). We love them and they are fun! we have a three year old great dane/black lab mix named Oscar, and a one year old boxer/viszla mix named Aloha - pronounced like the city not the Hawaii greeting.

did I mention I love my wife, because she is awesome and I do! 

anyways, i hope you have a great day and my God bless you! 

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Why conform?

why would I want to blog? part of me believes that bloggers are people who think that there life is actually important enough to write about and that people should actually care enough to read about it.  In truth, I think that bloggers are really egotistical. So why am I doing it? well, I am egotistical, and what people to think that my life is worth reading. 

I want to talk about some old friends. But first a confession, I suck as a human-being. I am the worst long-distance friend that anyone can have! OK now about old friend #1 who will be called D. 

D. and I used to be best friends we went to the same really small college and hung out nearly everyday, for hours and hours my freshman year. She taught me a lot of great things! She was the only person that could tell me that I was being an idiot, or a male pig, or a egotistical jerk. She also told me how to treat women in a serious relationship. In my sophomore year, D started changing. she was changing for the better, but I didn't know the changed D and was a little hurt. I held on to that for a long time. After my sophomore year, I moved to OSU and promised that I would stay in contact, well I didn't. and that was because (a) I am a horrible long-distant friend and (b) I felt like I had no idea who the changed D was. *time-out* there are a lot of people who know D, and should know that I totally respect her and regret not keeping in contact. *end time-out* since I left, D has been married around 2 or 3 years and has taken some drastic steps to help her physical well-being. and this is what has lead me to talk about her. As a friend who has spent countless hours with her in the past, I should know how long she and her husband have been together, I should have known that she underwent surgery this last summer. But I don't know how long they've been married and I didn't know about the surgery until last week. I suck. It is my fault and I regret not upholding my end of the friendship. - I am sorry D. 

Then there is friend X. that deserves some huge apologies. I am sorry that I haven't been there to "carry" you through this time in your life. and you will moving soon. I have let a very important friendship dissolve, because I suck as a human-being. Friend X has never, ever let me think any bad about my self, X has always believed in the best me that is possible. and I don't even know if her name is "A" or "X" because I suck.  (X insired me to blog- thanks for being egotistical enough, and open enough to let me read about you :-)    

I have 3 more friends that I want to talk about later.

This was a really depressing blog, but know that I am not "depressed" I just have some regrets. My life is very blessed. I have a beautiful loving wife and a lot of friends, I just miss a few old ones.

may the LORD shine upon you...