Thursday, March 26, 2009

Summer Opportunity

Laura here...
Here at BFA, our primary focus is missionary kids. So, when school is out for breaks, it is a little bare around Kandern. However, in the summer, a whole new flury of activity picks up where the students left off. JanzTeam operates English camps right in BFA's dorms.
And they need you!

They need adults, 19 years and older to help share the love of Jesus Christ, and its transforming power with German teenagers. They need vounteers to:
  • lead small groups
  • teach English
  • lead games and activities
  • present Bible messages
  • cook (guess where I hope to volunteer!)
  • lead worship

Rumor has it that they are especially in need of male counselors.

Camps run from July 12-26 and July 26-Aug 10th. Camps are 10 days, preceeded by 4 days of training.

Cost is your plane ticket and $400-500 for room and board. Family discounts may apply.

Come and help-- we'll cook American food for German teenagers for 2 weeks!

For more information, let me know and I will put you in contact with "the powers that be".

Monday, March 23, 2009

Prayer request

This weekend a tragedy fell on BFA. A father of 4 girls tragically and suddenly died of a heart attack on Saturday. One of his girls, Kara, is in my English class. Pray for his wife and his girls. It is hard to find words that can express the sorrow many of us feel. Pray for protection for this family.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

High School Retreat in pictures

5 buses of students and staff arriving after 6 1/2 hours of driving.
Our youth hostel for the weekend.
Did we step off the bus at Hogwarts?

Worship session in the meeting room.

World War II Museum during free time.

Nazi Party Rally pictures from Nuremburg.

Nuremburg at night... view from the hostel.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

three quarters

Today is the last day of 3rd Quarter. 3/4 of the way through the school year. Hard to believe. Time is flying by so quickly. And yet, we are still counting the days until Spring Break (16 including weekends).
Adam is frantically grading research papers to get them done in time for this quarter's grades. And I am planning an in class party to mourn the end of our cooking unit. We will be celebrating in style, with homemade ice cream, homemade hot fudge sauce, homemade butterscotch sauce and homemade whipped cream. Am I the coolest Home Ec teacher you know? 7 weeks of kitchen bliss and it is time to tackle resumes and personal finance. How do you transition from making ice cream to writing a resume? It is going to be a hard sell.
Last weekend we were in N├╝rnberg, Germany for High School Retreat. I think that warrants its own post with pictures. Needless to say, there were late nights, bunk beds, girls dance parties, and lots of small group time.
More to come...

Sunday, March 1, 2009

There's books, and then there's books about books

Adam here: I am so often overwhelmed with the amount of worthwhile stuff there is in this world to know. The older I get the more I wish I had paid better attention in school. The further away I get from college the more desperately I want to go back and study those things that I didn't really listen to the first time. Take history for example: the more I read about modern history, the more I look at the political climate of the world the more I wish I knew about all the decisions and events that led up to now. I wish I understood the comparisons for today's economy to those leading up to the Great Depression. And as I get a much larger world perspective (through living abroad and traveling around Europe) the more I wish I understood the influences that have worked to create the global community. One of my other interests is photography. I know how to point my camera and take pictures of things. I like to think I even know how to do it pretty well. I know a few tricks that I can use to achieve certain shots and I have a few tricks that I can use to get people to smile (usually). And I had developed a pretty good talent for getting ballerinas to smile for portraits. Still, there is so much more I don't know. So much about the mechanisms of the camera, lighting, exposure, filters, lenses, flash, etc. that make me fell like a total amateur. Don't bring up digital processing, either, because I know next to nothing about that whole mess.

So what's my point? My point is that there is a lot I don't know, but I have a deep desire to learn. So I read, and I try to read a lot. And both the beauty and the curse of this lies in the ever changing digital world and our dependence on it. I get a lot of information off of the web. For my politics I turn to Hugh. For thoughts on my spiritual life I go here and here. For some handy pointers of outdoor photography I just discovered this guy. For up-to-date info on literature, I just discovered this place where there is all kinds of wonderful news. And for the really, really important stuff I go here. Frankly, the Internet is a wealth of information that I think I have really only just begun to truly understand and use to my advantage. There is so much out there, but it can take a while to find anything actually worth reading. On top of this, there are social networking sites like Facebook where you can get the occasional recommendation for a great article.

Those sites mostly make up my daily routine on the Internet, but where else do I try to find an education? Books. I try to read lots and lots of books, and that is really what I am excited to talk about right now. In fact, it is because of a book that I even thought about posting on this topic in the first place.

Once again, I must divide my reading endeavours into categories. Already, I showed you my Internet category. Next is my school category. I am teaching To Kill a Mockingbird so I am reading through that one again (though it is never a book one should get tired of reading). I have also started to read The Merchant of Venice by Shakespeare. I will be teaching that next.

Moving on, along with reading through the book of Romans by Paul the Apostle I have been reading The Epistle to the Romans by James A Stifler. This is a book I picked up at the BFCF book swap.

And then there is the realm of pleasure reading. In this category we have A Handful of Dust by Evelyn Waugh. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I found it to be wry, dry, funny, and a little dark. It is described as being vicious and witty and I think that describes it well. I am very excited to pick up more of Waugh's books.

Next, is a very short and simple book that the elementary school librarian introduced me to. It was delightful. It is this kind of book that gets me excited about having kids one day and being able to share reading with them. (The irony is that this book doesn't have any words.) It is called The Arrival by Shaun Tan and it is amazingly illustrated. It was a delightful 30 minutes looking through this book.

Then we also have Book Finds: How to Find, Buy, and Sell Used and Rare Books. This is where my sister calls me a nerd. And she is right. I'm a nerd. I read a book about books. And, this book got me all excited to talk about books. Basically, my interest in reading this book came from my interest in first editions. I'm a book lover and reading this book really taught me how big of a lover of books I am. I really enjoy reading books but I also really enjoy the tangible, tactile feeling of books. I love the smell of books and I love the look of books piled across the shelves of a massive personal library. (Well, one day it might be massive.) I learned more about books reading this one book than I ever realized I wanted to know. Since I finished it I've been looking for blogs on books and bibliophiles and bibliographies and websites about books. I've been slowly uncovering a whole new world of the written page and I've been loving it. So much so that I must tell you about the book I started reading yesterday.

This book is called A Passion for Books. Yes, it is another book about books, book collectors, book collections, and everything book related. This is where my wife calls me a nerd. And she is right. I'm a nerd. I've only read about 20 pages so far but every page re-emphasizes that I have a desire to know books and to read good books and to own lots and lots and lots of books.

Well, I've rambled enough and I think you get the point. So I'll simply say goodbye and happy reading.