Thursday, June 7, 2012

Summer of Shakespeare Part 1/?

Absence makes the heart grow ever fonder, eh? 
These last few months have been a snatch whirl-windy-ish. 
I will not complain nor desire to take back one part of it! 

Last week, I tripped up the road through California to Oregon. 
On the way, my friends and I stopped in San Francisco and explored. 

{Sammamish and me with some sea lions}

{clam chowdaaa is the BEST}

{free chocolate is the beez kneez!}

I am currently in Ashland, Oregon for the Shakespeare Festival. 

{isn't this a gorgeous place?}

When I found out that I could get six units of upper div. English credit
for reading Shakespeare and traveling north to see awesome plays, 
I simply couldn't resist!

Last week, I spent 24ish hours in class discussions with 
15 other people and one of the greatest professors at all time ((Dr. Kleist)). 
We read and discussed: 

Troilus and Cressida, 

As You Like It,

Romeo and Juliet, 

and Henry V. 

We had to write a paper every day and it was pretty exhausting, 
especially right after finals week, 
but the process was well worth it and I was able to see
so much growth even in such a short time. 

Spending so much time together forced all of us to quickly get to know each other. 
What a pure delight it has been to pursue 
intricate and complicated ideas 
while seeing the ways that God has gifted different people
with specific intellectual abilities. 
I feel so very blessed to be surrounded by these 
minds and wonderful personalities!

We are staying at a beautiful house up in Ashland 
where we cook all of our meals together. 

It is drop dead GORGEOUS out here, 
and it even rained for a snatch this morning!
Although we are still working hard and our days are very full, 
it still feels like I am on vacation! 
How blessed I am!

{this is where I get to live for a week and a half!!}

Our professor brings his family along each year on this trip
and it has been one of my favorite things
 to watch him interact with them
and serve them as a father. 

The first play that we saw was Troilus and Cressida. 

It was a phenomenal production. 
We spent time after the performance discussing the play
together as a group. 
On Friday, we will get to spend time
with some of the actors discussing it with thm.

As I am pushing deeper into Shakespearean texts, 
I am realizing more and more
how very rich these plays are. 

There are so many layers and ideas to be thought about! 

{happy is this Maddy mind}

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Yellow Watches and Missions

This week is the 83rd Missions Conference at Biola. 
As lovely as it is to be without classes for the next three days, 
I feel even more blessed that I am in a place that 
seeks to focus our attention 
where God is focused.

The band United Pursuit is leading worship. 

This is my favorite song by them:

They played it this afternoon. 
So good. 
I love the image of climbing a mountain with hands wide open. 

I'm trying to learn what it means to open my hands more.

They pack a lot into this conference so I am trying to be intentional 
about making space to process what I am learning. 

When I am immersed in deepening my love and understanding of God, 
sometimes I forget that I am human,
that I have to stop
every now and then
to process. 

I love that God designed me to need space to 

The words intentional and process are two of my favorite words.

They're right up there with encouragement and joy.

I LOVE words. 
I love words that really really matter and make a difference. 


Last night as I was falling asleep, I had a hankering for a creative idea. 
{Pre-sleep time is usually my most brilliant}

So I worked up at Hume Lake Christian Camps this summer. 
Besides being an incredible experience for my heart and soul and mind, 
I developed the habit of wearing a watch. 

There is no cell phone service up there and so 
watching it up
was the only way to get anywhere on time. 

After the summer ended, I kept the habit alive. 
I bought the CUTEST watch from Target. 
But then the band started to fall apart as I wore it ever so faithfully. 
[Flash-forward. ]

Last night, I decided to bring it back to life. 

I cut the watch head part 
{ummm anyone know the anatomy of watches?}
and then took a piece of yellow stringyish from
my favorite belt. 

And this is what happened

I'm pretty excited about it, 
as can be seen by my very expressive hand. 

I love yellow things. 

I love watches. 

I love Missions Conferences. 

I love Jesus. 

Because he first loved me. 

P.s. Do yourself a BIG favor and watch this,
she is one of my favorite people ever. 
I can't wait to hang out with her in heaven. 

{happy ears lead to a happy hearted Maddy}

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Hamsters, String Cheese & Lovin'

Today was a day of yellow-o-sity.

{love it}


I had TWO cupcakes tonight to celebrate Biola's birthday. 
I accidentally did not eat anything else for dinner. 

The drama of such a choice has ensued in pure ants~i~ness throughout myself.
It feels like there is a little hamster-guy running on a wheel inside myself. 
He is a very quick little buddy, I must say.
Maybe he ate cupcakes for dinner too. 

Here's the tragedy:
I thought I should put something else inside my stummy to 
absorb some of the sugar.

I took a break from bouncing on my chair homeworking to pop some corn.

The first bite revealed its true nature as kettle corn.
I hate it when that happens. 

I guess my "dinner" will now consist of
string cheese,
chocolate, and
string cheese. 

Eh it all evens out in there somehow. 


P.s. today was a good day for loving.
I am so thankful that God has placed people and people groups in my life to be loved.
We're all lookin' for a little lovin'. 
Stoked to be on both ends of that deal. 

{bouncing with love & hamsters is this Maddaaaaye}

Friday, January 20, 2012


What a week of friendventures!

On Wednesday I was blessed to spend the evening with my
dear friend Cari. 
We worked together up at Hume over the summer.
I started calling her "Cari-Lari"...
but now I mostly just call her Lari. 

{Isn't she lovely?}

She has such a sweet and beautiful and ever so spunky heart. 
She is such a ginormous blessing to me as she sits and listens and asks questions
 as I warble on about my life. 

We wandered to Starbucks and across my campus, exchanging words.
I thoroughly enjoyed hearing all about the big transitions in her life. 
She is definitely an example of strength and consistency in 
the face of change,
revealing such a heart of obedience to the Lord's direction for her life. 

She also hand-made this for me:

and I am thoroughly obsessed with it. 
It is a case for my laptop, hand sewn.

It's thick and cuddly and protective and I very nearly slept with it the first night. 
I am so thankful that my computer is going to be cozy and safe
for his daily nap times.

Oh Lari, what a lovely lady!


Thursday was a day for another friendventure! 
The day started and ended with my sweet friend/coworker, Rebecca.
We had been planning a day for thrifting for weeks and this was the day. 

We only hit up two stores, but our time was well spent and produced good results. 

I picked up some epic items that I am stoked to wear.
{I love clothes that require a process to obtain!}

Then, we ventured to Carl's Jr for lunch. 
Rebecca had
In my family, this is a very big deal.

I told the cashier that it was her first time and the sweet lady
She was really excited for Rebecca.
I had a good chuckle over that.

Rebecca was clearly WAY stoked too. 

{She was quite delighted by her lunch, lemmetellya.}

We polished off our lunch with the new yummy dessert at Carls.
It's the oreo cookie ice cream sandwich!

{I have consumed a copious amount of these sweet treats in the last week, it's bad.}

What a phenomenal sweet invention.
Just like friendship is a phenomenal sweet invention.

{Good one, God}

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Newer Year Resolutions

So last year I had some pretty successful resolves for the New Year.
I was not able to memorize "Handlebars" by the Flobots...
but I am all about the second chances.

New Year, New Resolves 

1. learn morse code

2. call grocery stores "markets"

3. take more hugs and give more smiles

4. bake {but mostly eat} more pie
lemon merengue, obviously

Joking-a-la-zoking aside, my motto for this year is this:

"Do not withhold good from those who deserve it when it is in your power to act." 
Proverbs 3:27

I truly desire to enter this year with a heart and mind that is generous with the
I have been given.

I think this starts with praying constantly for a sense of
so that I can understand what I have been given.

{perfecting the strawstache last year... it's a good omen}

{in awe but passionate about doing something about it is this Maddy heart}

Monday, January 16, 2012

Adventuring is the Best Way to Grow Up

This past weekend was one for the books. 
I smiled so much that my face hurt every night. 

I was BEYOND blessed to spend Friday morning until Sunday afternoon 
in the gorgeous Pismo Beach. 

I drove up with two dear women, 
both of whom are named Melanie. 

{at the gum wall in SLO}

These girls bring me so much joy!
It was such an honor to be able to talk at them
and listen to them for hours and hours. 

I love people.
I love their words so much, too.

Our weekend involved no rigid schedule or plan. 
We quite literally meandered our way through the days. 

We watched gorgeous sunsets.

The viewing of this one involved the consumption
of copious amounts of Gushers and Goldfish.
We really are kids at heart, err stomach.

There was a little airplane that accompanied the falling of the sun. 
The pilot came closer and closer and even waved at us,
doing backflips and showing off. 

But then this big ugly pelican monster decided to imitate the plane and fly straight at us.

{have I mentioned my fear of birds yet? yeah not so much a fan}

Lots of pretty awesome people watching
went down, as we were able to 
walk everywhere in the small town. 

On Saturday, we decided to explore San Luis Obispo and Morro Bay.

We found a place where you can feed Seals. 

I got to throw ranky, stinky fish parts at this little guy. 

{lookin' yummy eh?}

And he and his friends caught every single one.
They were born at Sea World, in captivity,
so they can't be set free in the wild.

They did all kinds of silly tricks.
Oh my goodness it was just so much fun!!

What a great experience!! 

We watched some movies
(Titanic and Water For Elephants)

and talked

and laughed

and ate
(we cooked all of our meals together)

and snacked

and talked 

and slept

and talked

and laughed. 

A lot.

The timing of this weekend was a significant blessing to each of us.
How wonderful that our Lord knows our needs?!
His timing is so beautiful to me.

Experiencing incredible peace and a lack of stress
really reminded me of how important it is to 
intentionally REST. 

My mind and heart and body
often process life at a speed that is much faster 
than necessary.

I am learning how to handle this phenomenon
as I experience greater levels of pressure
in school and life. 

I'm still very much a youngster, 
the canvas of my life is still very empty
of color and design, 
as I am seeking to develop into the big girl I hope to be some day.

However, this last year has involved
extensive stretching
of my heart and mind. 
I feel that I have grown ever so much. 

This adult skin still doesn't fit very well. 
But I'm getting there. 
In many ways, this weekend 
revealed to me how important it is to be
aware of this growth, and to celebrate it with people.

And God's glorious creation.

Oh I also learned two new things about myself this weekend:

1) I love beach towns.
2) I could quite literally stare at the waves crashing on the beach for hours.
(Looking back, I actually realize that I have down this
many many times throughout my life)


Sunday evening, on the way home I stopped at a friend's home.
We adventured around town, 
driving and exploring
and eating wonderful food,
while talking of God's presence in our lives.
We finished the evening enjoying
so much creative, beautiful music.

My little heart felt near overwhelmed
with the amazing gifts that God has given to others.
I am so thankful for friends who choose to receive and then give, 
rather than hoarding their blessings.


This Monday holiday was spent 
traipsing through Laguna Beach with my family.

Such a lovely place.

Such a lovely bunch of Rhodeses.

{relaxed and sigh-happy is this little Maddy}

Tuesday, January 3, 2012


Whilst vacationing with my wonderful family 
in Arizona last week,
I spent some time with my ever so artistic Aunt Linda. 

She makes the most beautiful quilts. 
It was so pleasant to sit with her and listen 
as she shared about quilting and crafting and creating. 

Each of these processes requires so much
and a deep appreciation for

When I came back home, 
I decided to buy some yarn and crochet some hats.

Then I started making headbands...

I love the yarn that I bought
{even though it's almost camouflage-y}
I feel a snatch like a hippy 
curly hair seems to be all about being loose and fancy free
and sometimes it needs to be tamed by a headband. 

It is just ever so fun to use
the mind and hands and glimmer of creativity
that God has blessed me with
to actually create something. 
I love finishing a project like this and then 
to look at it, really study it.

This may sound ever so silly...
but these moments of 
pure delight
that I feel when I make something
cause me to look at the world differently.

God must have been so stinkin' stoked
as he created the earth. 
His delight in his creation of everything,
especially his people,
must be so incredibly vast. 

It makes it a little easier to understand
how He delights in me. 
I am his created one.

"When I consider your heavens,
the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars,
which you have set in place,
what is mankind that you are mindful of them,
human beings that you care for them?"
Psalm 8:3-4

{thoroughly delighted is this Maddy-heart}