Career Choices

You guys know the drill. You, as young teenager, are more worried about when your pizza will be delivered and when Incredibles 2 is coming out on DVD than about your future and ‘what I want to be when I grow up.’

And then an adult looks at you, cocks their head, and asks the dreaded question:

“So, what do you want to do with your life?”

You blink. Why do people always ask this? Why don’t they just realize that, for the time being, you want to stay as childish as you can for as long as you can and don’t want to think about college and taxes and adult things? But now you have to answer, so you beg off with the words “I don’t know.”

Well, my friend, now I know.

Ever since I was young, I’ve wanted to be a scientist. A vet was the first thing. I loved animals. Then it was a chemist, a marine biologist, etc. Above all, of course, I want to be a stay-at-home mom, but I’ve always wanted to get a nice education. When I reached my tweens, I dreamed of studying astronomy or computer science. I still would love to work for NASA and music is always a possibility. But I think I’ve found what God wants me to be.

For the past few years, I’ve heard a lot about the medical field. I’ve read books that housed characters that were doctors and watched shows where nurses were the heroes. I’ve had friends go off to college for nursing. I’ve heard of missions trips with large focuses on the medical side of things. My aunt is an RN. My cousin is an RN who works in the ER. Several people in my church have experience in the medical field. I’ve had to do a little bit of medical research for my novel, which I found fascinating. I liked studying the skeleton in biology. The more I think about, the more things in my life are pointing flashing neon lights towards the field of nursing.

I believe God wants me to be a nurse. It was never something I really wanted to do. I’ve always wanted to do something big, to make my mark on history. You know, like the first woman to walk on Mars or something. But I can’t get away from nursing. God won’t leave me alone. I’d much rather be an actual doctor or an astronaut or a concert pianist (haha I have no music skills) or college professor.

I really don’t know why God is leading me this way. I mean, I want to help people, but there’s other ways I could help people besides sticking IVs in them in hospitals. God just won’t let me get my mind off of it. I am really hoping this is of God and I’m not just somehow confusing myself, but I don’t see how it could be of me. If it isn’t of God, I pray that He’ll make that clear before I actually go to college for it.

Eventually, I think, He’ll bring Mr. Right along and I’ll marry. Then, I suppose, I’ll quit my job and become a housewife, which is what I’ve always wanted. But until then, and unless He tells me differently, I’ll be an RN.

 

–abby

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Though He Slay Me Ramblings

I have decided that I really need to give an explanation for why I am writing Though He Slay Me.

 

Really, all the credit for inspiration should go to Edgar Rice Burroughs.

 

I was ten when I first picked up a copy of the original Tarzan of the Apes. I fell in love with John Clayton and was devastated when he died, along with his lovely wife. But then, there was a son who survived.

I followed that son on his journey from childhood to manhood. I loved how he was raised by apes who loved him as their own. I loved how he was smart and quick and agile, how he was caring for those he loved, especially his mother. And how he survived.

 

That was the part that really got me.

 

Survival in the jungle, I realized at age ten, was harder than I thought. Tarzan battled lions and apes with his bare hands, yet he know that being a man set him apart from the other animals. He knew that eating human flesh was wrong, so he ate deer and whatever else he caught with his rope or stabbed with his spear or killed with his strength.

 

Another thing that fascinated me was how he moved.

 

In all  the movies I had seen, Tarzan flew through the trees on vines. Not so. He climbed and leaped from branch to branch or swung on boughs, not vines. He was as graceful as a swan yet as strong as ox.

 

And when I was eleven, I decided that jungle life sounded fun.

 

I wanted to go to Africa, I told myself. I want to live like Tarzan. I want to run through the jungle being chased by apes and leopards. I want to leap from branch to branch in the treetops. I want to hunt, using only organic matter and my wits. I want to exist where few men dare to exist. I want to be in constant danger of my life and have fun.

 

And then, an idea known as Katie Riley was born.

 

couldn’t go to Africa, I knew, despite my daydreams. That was out of the question. I had no money and wasn’t born into a wealthy family. There was no way my parents were going to be able to pay my way, and probably not allow me to go, either. Nobody wants their teenage daughter in the jungle with no communication to the outside world. My being able to survive out there was highly illogical, anyway. The jungle wasn’t what I had dreamed, anyway. It was a lot more dangerous and frightful.

 

Ways I could get around this started forming in my mind. What if, for some reason, I was flying over central Africa when my plane crashed? Everyone else would be unconscious, and I wandered off, never to be seen from again, until several years later when I was finally found.

 

And then the Idea, the great, wonderful Idea occurred to me.

 

 

What if it wasn’t my plane that crashed?

What if it was a character’s?

 

I had tried to write once or twice before. I had started Soldier Boy and had written a few short stories and poems. But this was my first real inclination to write a full novel. So I started plotting.

 

Katie (or Jamie, I couldn’t decide) was a twelve-year-old girl who lived in Cairo (I was enthused by Egypt) as a missionary to the entire African continent. (How this would be possible, I have no idea. I was eleven. Bear with me.) When her favorite brother, Jack, was lost to the jungle after a plane crash in a tropical storm, Katie sets out to find him, as she cannot imagine life without him. (Talk about cliche.) Katie’s Search and Rescue chopper crashes in the jungle, also. As she is the only survivor, she must learn to live on her own, this learning many Tarzan-like skills.

 

From then on, my Idea blossomed.

 

Katie was definitely going to be her name. She was no longer twelve, but somewhere in the 14-15 age group. Her family and some others ran a small mission on the edge of the savanna. The goals of the mission were to reach ‘natives’ (for lack of a better term) to Christ. Incidents in the jungle realm changed, too. Though she was still to learn several Tarzan-like skills, her main crisis was her faith. She wanted her brother back badly, and everything she tried to do to find her why home and hopefully see her brother again (as she had a feeling he was found) seemed to be futile. Nothing was working. She was surviving, yes, but she was lost in the green abyss of the rain forest surrounding the Congo River. Finally, she would come to a breaking point where she knew she had to give it all up and give it to God. Whether she finds her family and gets home is still untold. (Mwahahahaha)

 

 

There are also several aspects to her breaking point (why she’s so afraid to lose Jack, etc.) and probably waaay too many subplots for a novel. But at this point,  I don’t really care. I plan to finish the rough draft before January 1st, 2018, and start editing soon thereafter. Hopefully I didn’t give too much away. Sometime I’ll do a post about why I like writing in general, but I love Katie’s story because it inspires me.

 

And it’s all because of a man named Burroughs wrote a novel that caught my attention and ultimately changed my life.

 

–Abby

Sebastian

Sebastian, a lonely, unhappy bear, was never heard from in the animal kingdom after he went to visit Miss Franny Block’s library on the corner of Burden Avenue and 21st Street in Naomi, Florida. He was normal looking bear: tall, shaggy, and somewhat mangy with carrion usually stuck in his teeth and big, black eyes. Thus being said, he caused quite a stir whenever he left his forest abode, particularly when he went into civilizations known as towns.

 

Being scorned by the bears and all woodland civilization because of his quiet demeanor, Sebastian longed to do something more with his life than sit by himself and eat berries. It came to him that there were other places in his vicinity besides the forest. So, after giving his favourite tree one last scratch, ate a few blackberries, and, armed with his wits and claws, set out to see the world.

 

It was only chance, Sebastian knew, that he came across the town of Naomi first in his travels. The tiny community was made famous for its Litmus Lozenges, a candy created by a lonely survivor the Civil War. Its ingredient that made it special was sorrow, which, according to India Opal Buloni, went well with flavors reminiscent of strawberry and root beer.

 

During Sebastian journeys, Opal’s father wasn’t even thought of, let alone the girl herself. But as this leads into her dog’s story, it is only right to give her credit for the retelling of Sebastian’s.

 

Naomi was quaint town, Sebastian knew. It boasted a Litmus Lozenge factory, a church, and mom-and-pop shops. But what interested him most was the library.

 

The library was Miss Franny Block’s, given to her by her father, who, because of his grandfather’s candy-making success, was filthy rich. It was a small library, but held the classics, such as War and Peace, A Tale of Two Cities, etc.

 

Well, by Miss Franny’s own account, it was a Thursday in the summer that Sebastian first came to visit Miss Franny. Sebastian had been watching the town for a little over a week, hanging around the outskirts, watching the farmers and farmhands and pastors and teachers and factory workers and rich people come and go. And he noticed that the people who went into the little white house with the picket fence on the corner of Burden and 21st always came out with something. Boxes, he thought. Little boxes that are somehow bigger on the inside. The people open them and stare at them. I’ve seen them do it lot’s of times. The children in the schoolyard do it, too, only their boxes are different.

 

And then, on that Thursday, Sebastian the bear decided that he wanted a box.

 

And what do you do when you want a box?

 

You go to the place where the boxes are being distributed.

 

So Sebastian did.

 

Now, by her own account, Miss Franny was a real smart-alec when it came to her library. On the particular day that Sebastian came to visit, Miss Franny was engrossed in a novel, War and Peace to be exact. Sebastian, who was a very kind bear, did not want to disturb the lady at the desk, so, as quietly as he could, he walked through the open door. Miss Franny, asking if she could help him, did not look up.

 

And then, it happened.

 

Perhaps it was the whiff of rotting flesh that Sebastian carried, or the way his big shadow fell across Miss Franny’s page. Sebastian never knew. All he knew was that Miss Franny did not want him in her library.

 

So, raising her thousand-page novel in her hand, Miss Franny launched her book right at poor Sebastian’s head.

 

Sebastian had his box.

 

 

 

–Abby

 

(Disclaimer: I do not own the copyright for any of the characters related to Because of Winn-Dixie. I only wrote this story as a sort of fanfiction for myself and others to enjoy)

 

 

 

*angry pterodactyl screeching*

I am thoroughly convinced that some plant matter was not created to be consumed by humans. This is a belief I have come to through many years of experience in my field of expertise, eating. I will not be talked out of it.

 

But Abilene, you say, aren’t vegetables good for you?

I will admit, some of them are. But most are despicable.

 

A description of one of the main offenders:

Leafy, forest green vegetables that taste like grass. Supposedly, such vegetables are ‘healthy’ and ‘make you grow big and strong’ but eating such will only make you hate yourself and have grass-like particles stuck in your teeth until you can floss. Sometimes restaurants put said vegetable on pizza. Those idiots. Do they not realize that they are wasting precious dough, cheese and sauce to create a despicable flavor of everyone’s favourite Italian dish?

Spinach. Yuck.

 

Another description of an equally hateable vegetable:

Long and stringy, this food should only be used to feed prison inmates. Usually cooked with salt and pepper (or sometimes eaten raw by da crazies), this pea-like dish is disgusting. Unfortunately, many middle class children are tormented by well-meaning parents when they are forced to choke down bowlfulls of said vegetable. That is why such children have trust issues.

Green beans. The horror.

 

A third:

Devilishly pink, this root is considered one of the most hated vegetables in America. That’s a lot of middle schoolers who despise this particular dish. Though somewhat sweet, this plant packs a flavor that mainly tastes like DIRT. I would appreciate that more if I was in the backyard eating worms, but, unfortunately, I’d be at the dinner table, cringing at what I see in the little glass bowl next to my plate.

Beets.

How revolting. 

 

The grand finale:

Small, terrifying rolls that look like mini cabbages, this is every elementary (and high school) student’s worst nightmare. Though they often are covered in melted cheese or some such product in attempts to mask their unpalatable, wretched, foul, repulsive taste, these little bombs will never cease to be on my list for the “Most Nasty Vegetable” award. And the worst part is, some people actually like them! And expect other people (those who actually have half of a sense of taste), to eat them and enjoy them. No wonder we have problems with America.

 

Brussel sprouts. *gags*

 

 

–abby

 

I’m a Sophomore??? Whhaaat!

IM GOING INTO TENTH GRADE WHAT IS HAPPENING WHY AM I FIFTEEN YEARS OLD I AM ACTUALLY SEVEN.

 

Ahem. *smoothes shirt* *worries why ‘smoothes’ is underlined with a suspicious little squiggly line*

 

In all seriousness, I am fifteen years old. I am going into tenth grade. And I’m not completely certain I like it.

 

Oh, there’s the joy of having new classes. (Abeka English 10 with Mrs. Thompson? Priceless) And the happiness of getting closer to graduation. (YAY) But soon after that will come a period where I will have to….adult.
I can see it now.

 

“Pay for me own pizza? My own pizza?  Do you people not realize that I am actually seven years old? I can’t pay for a large Hawaiian pizza with extra pineapple! I’m not even allowed to use the oven!” *narrows eyes at delivery boy (who stares at the weird college age girl in bewilderment)*

 

*sighs*

 

I’m going to be in college. In four years. I don’t know anything! I can barely tie my shoes, and I’m going to be in college!!!! Studying nerdy science stuff or something equally odd!

 

 

Okay, so maybe my estimates of myself are a little exaggerated. But college?

 

*sighs louder*

 

At least by then I’ll have a job and a car and an actual gym membership and a favourite hairdresser and I’ll have my life all figured out, right?

 

hahahahahahahahahahahaha. 😀

 

 

 

 

Wishing for Hawaiian pizza,

 

Abby

 

 

 

 

What I’m Reading

Hmm. Let’s see. Books. Strange, papery objects commonly held in the hand and read by scanning the eyes over black lines that adorn the inside. Those who read them frequently for pleasure and literary wealth are known as ‘bookworms’, a derogatory term taken from several species of insects that live in, riddle through, and destroy the objects known as books.

 

I prefer being called a ‘book dragon.’

 

This book dragon has been quite busy this summer, devouring any fascinating piece of literature she can lay her claws on. In case you would like see what she enjoys, she has provided this post for your edification.

 

Armageddon

Armageddon

 

Ah, yes. The eleventh installment in the Left Behind Series. If you want to read the book dragon’s review on the first book of said series, click here. Armageddon brought on intriguing plot developments and LOTS of unshed tears….Don’t read the inside cover of Glorious Appearing if you don’t want Armageddon spoilers.

 

 

Glorious Appearing

Glorious Appearing

Like any self-respecting book dragon, I picked up the next book in my favourite series as soon as I finished the previous one. I’m just super disappointed that I’M FINALLY GETTING TO THE END OF MY FAVOURITE SERIES. WHAT EVEN. I just have the prequel trilogy and the last sequel, Kingdom Come. *sniffs*

 

Wonder

Wonder

 

I recently received this for my birthday… SO GOOD. I’ve only read the first couple of chapters but I love it.

 

 

Code Name Verity

Code Name Verity

 

This book is set in the middle of WWII and the main viewpoint is from a Brit spy captured by the Gestapo. The storyline is great but there is a spattering of curse words now and then and it also uses Christ’s name in vain. I’m only a few chapters in but it seems really good otherwise. (I don’t really recommend this to younger readers because of the language. Maybe I’ll do a full review once I finish it.)

 

Anne of Green Gables

Anne of Green Gables

An old favourite, shall we say? Anne was one of the first to make me recognize my love for romance, novels, and autumn. I’m trying to reread the series…but there’s so many other good books that I haven’t read already!!!! Anyway, my favourite of the original eight would probably be Rilla of Ingleside. I can sort-of relate to Rilla and I love the character development and the heartbreak. SPOILER ALERT: DO NOT READ THE FOLLOWING SENTENCE IF YOU HAVE NOT READ RILLA OF INGLESIDE AND DO NOT WANT SPOILERS. Walter’s death broke my li’l fragile heart–he was my favourite!!!! *sobs hysterically in corner surrounded by dusty novels and used Kleenex* Oh, and, who doesn’t love Gilbert???

 

 

Some books I’m planning on reading this summer/fall:

 

Flygirl

Cry of Courage

Johnny Tremain (technically I am already half way through it but haven’t read it in months, shame on me)

Babylon Rising

A Hero’s Guide to Saving His Kingdom

 

 

So, anyway…yeah. If you’ve read any of these, comment below and tell me which ones are your favorites. I’m just hoping that Code Name Verity stays good lol. 😀

 

–Abby

Am I doing this right?

Am I doing this whole blogging thing right? Because I have a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach that says I’m not.

 

Should I post more about my life than I do? For that matter, should I post more in general? I don’t know. Should I post short stories? more book reviews? devotionals? Should I talk more about things people can relate to? Should I talk more about other people than just about me and my life? I feel like there’s so much I could be doing better that would mean more to people.

 

Should I have pictures on the side bar, or more widgets? Even fewer widgets? Should I follow more blogs?

 

I don’t know. When I first got this blog, I was so excited that people could see what I write, put their selves in my shoes for ten minutes. But now I don’t know if I write clear enough that they can. And, nobody will anyway, because nobody’s reading it.

 

Am I doing this right? Because I don’t think that I am.

 

–abby