29 February 2012

"ask me a question"

Tonight was the second night of Redeemer's Open House for the new home of Redeemer West Side's congregation and building on W83rd Street. For those of you who don't live in New York, this is a pretty big deal. Not only is every inch of space you can barely-call-your-own extremely tee-niny anyway, it's rare to even be able to legitimately call a place your own (aka, own it). Redeemer's new very-own building that has been in the works for years and years is finally opening. There were open houses last night and tonight and the first church service(s) will be this Sunday!

I volunteered with the children's ministry to help people check in and get acquainted with the new very-hi-tech system for registering. (There is mostly sarcasm in that statement, but some seriousness. It's very hi-tech for Redeemer.) In return for our volunteer services, they kindly required that we wear these buttons as big as my face that said "Ask Me a Question!" Very lovely.

In Tim Keller's brief address to the congregation and guests tonight, he reminded us of the days when Redeemer met on Sunday afternoons in someone's apartment on East 73rd Street in 1989. In those days no one was talking of a superstar pastor of a church with 5,000+ attendees every week. This very blessed church sure has come a long way! Psalm 127:1 is mighty powerful.

[by the way, I took most of these pictures from Bethany!]

leap day comic

I found this postcard (along with several others!) on Slate's website today. They have a series of vintage Leap Day postcards pointing out the tradition that I mentioned earlier about a girl being allowed to propose to her boyfriend on Leap Day. I found these postcards to be pretty cute.

Read more about the tradition here.

happy leap day!

I'm dying to watch this movie, Leap Year, again today in honor of this very strange holiday. Apparently in Ireland, a woman can propose to her boyfriend on Leap Day instead of having to wait for him to propose! The movie was cute and lovely (with beautiful scenery); although, the day makes no sense to me at all. However, if there is actually something like this worthwhile that comes out of the once-every-four-years holiday, maybe I should start looking into that...?!

day twenty-nine: from the air

These were my last views of Africa and first views of America. Bittersweet feelings.

view from the plane.

such a clear view of the townships in the lower half of the picture.

sunrise as we were getting close to New York.

never tired of the view

I met some friends for dinner last night near Times Square and glanced over to see this view of the Chrysler Building as I was heading there. As much as this crazy city wears me out at times, I don't think I'll ever tire of seeing these sights on my way to a casual Tuesday night dinner with friends....

28 February 2012

day twenty-eight: boarding the plane

Although we were all exhausted and excited to be back in New York to our family and friends, it was a sad feeling when it came time to board the plane back to the US of A. We had a Sunday night flight back to American that arrived in New York at 7am on Monday morning. This is (part of) our team as we were lining up to board the flight from Cape Town to Johannesburg, the first leg of our trip. Lots of mixed feelings and thoughts to process as we left after such a wonderful 10 days in Africa...

good morning.

Yesterday I tried to follow these instructions.

27 February 2012

day twenty-seven: signal hill

On our last day in Cape Town, as we were headed to the airport, we made one last stop to gaze at beauty on Signal Hill. As if the sights we had seen in the previous 9 days weren't beautiful enough already, it just got more beautiful! As you can tell, it was a bit windy though... 

This was the stadium where the 2010 World Cup soccer tournament was held!


"Why can't we get all the people together in the world that we really like and then just stay together? I guess that wouldn't work. Someone would leave. Someone always leaves. Then we would have to say good-bye. I hate good-byes. I know what I need. I need more hellos."
-Charles M. Schulz

26 February 2012

fiction book club, 2nd edition

Remember last month when I mentioned I was in a new fiction book club? We're meeting for the second time tomorrow night and guess what the series that we'll be discussing is this month? Yep: Harry Potter! Don't try to imagine how excited I am because you can't possibly.

I'm trying to decide if I should wear my Hermione costume, or not...

And of course it wouldn't be a Harry Potter party without Potter snacks, so we'll have those too. In fact, we have a whole Potter-esque menu planned. I'll report back on that! 

day twenty-six: our hostel

Welcome to our humble abode for our 10 days in Africa!

I found a Perryn-chair!

Isn't it adorbs!!? You can tell we had a lot of fun here!

25 February 2012

day twenty-five: ethiopian dinner

This was my first experience with Ethiopian food, and frankly I was a little nervous. The rumors were that you eat everything with your hands; no utensils. I'm not one who's big on getting their hands dirty in any circumstance, but especially when it means eating dinner.

But I survived and I LOVED it. (Brendan and I actually scoped out an Ethiopian restaurant in Harlem recently to try it again.) The food was definitely different: different texture, of course different spices, and well, just different. But in a good way. And our team had a fun time experiencing this bit of African culture (albeit, Ethiopian, not South African) and it won me over. Fair and square!

this was an 8-course meal. see the 8 different blobs!

this is what we did to celebrate Lindy's birthday! and she got a free t-shirt!

popcorn and coffee for dessert. still not sure about this combo, but yum!

24 February 2012

she's (almost) here...

I'm literally clicking "refresh" on my browser every 15 seconds to see if Rose's plane has landed yet! I'm looking forward to a very fun weekend in store, I'm sure. After several flight delays today, bad weather, and a Newark to Penn Station train ride between us, it will be a sweet reunion (soon).

day twenty-four: gatsby sandwich

If you want to see a good idea for a sandwich, feast your eyes on this! One of the days that we helped out at Arise, they insisted that we try these Gatsby sandwiches; they obviously didn't have to twist my arm very hard.

It's a hoagie sandwich with meat, a delectable sauce and french fries right in the sandwich. It seemed like the most efficient way to eat all of my favorite things. I'm thinking about bringing these Gatsby sandwiches to the US... I'm craving one now!

hola, colorado!

Wow, is it beautiful in Denver! And wow, did I have the best host and hostess ever. I arrived at the airport in Denver laaaate on Friday night and I was pretty zonked since it was even later NYC time. Saturday, my most gracious hosts took me to see the sights of Colorado. First stop: Red Rocks! It was covered in snow and soooo pretty!

Then we went to Buffalo Bill's grave! Very interesting sight, I thought. Then we all tried to remember who Buffalo Bill even was...

Ahh, and the constant view of the mountains! They were spectacular.

Sunday, at my request in lieu of skiing, we went sledding on a nearby sledding hill in Denver. I thought this was the safer option (for me, a novice skier) and I was mostly right. After about 5-7 runs, our sleds broke though, but luckily no injuries!

I had such a great time visiting my friends Caylen and David and seeing a part of their life out west. It took too long for me to visit, but I'm glad I finally made it. I'll be happy when you guys are a liiittle closer!

city wide worship

A few Fridays ago, Trinity Grace Church and some other churches in NYC hosted a city-wide praise event. This is a photo that was snapped and posted on Atlantic Cities from the final prayer of the evening. I became aware of this picture because I posted it on our new #TPFperspective photo blog yesterday (for The Park Forum, check it out!).

I can't stop looking at this photo. How powerful and beautiful. Seriously.

(and ps, can you find Brendan and me in the photo?!)

23 February 2012

day twenty-three: public school assembly

I loved the entire trip to Capetown, but there weren't many things that touched my heart like the experience on Friday of the trip did. Through Arise, we went to a nearby public school and held an assembly for the kiddos to teach a bible lesson. Some of the kids were familiar faces that we had met on Wednesday at the Arise after-school program, but many faces were new. They were all beautiful and eager and excited to see us, and we had a blast putting on a show for them! And, I apologize in advance for the large quantity of pictures included in this post - get ready...

check out that ham!

this is one of my absolute favorite trips from the entire trip! we said scream...and she did!

we passed these coloring sheets out to the kids, and they loved them!

I want to go back to this school.