Stay Classy.

Pacific Beach, San Diego

i love san diego.

now that the final details are getting wrapped up with my new job (another post sometime soon) and things are becoming official, i am so excited to say i love this city. my city. home. i am 'from' here. i have lived in a few other places, but i am from here. this is my home. this is not a dig on your town, i hope you love where you are at as much as i do. but for me, san diego has my heart. so as i sit outside my favorite mexican restaurant enjoying a carne asada burrito, looking in between palm trees at the view of downtown and the ocean on a perfect afternoon, i think this is a good time to put some thoughts down on why i love this city so much.

i am sitting outside my favorite mexican restaurant enjoying a carne asada burrito, looking in between palm trees at the view of downtown and the ocean on a perfect afternoon.

the beach culture here is absorbed miles inland. even people that live thirty miles inland still have a laid-back, beach attitude. things may be fast paced here, but people for the most part are pretty relaxed. you're more likely to walk into a an office and see guys in hawaiian shirts than a tie. sandals are considered the shoes of choice. you don't even have to be a beach-going person to be a part of this culture, i think it's the default setting.

every neighborhood has it's own unique flavor. if you're up north, you're in a track home. normal heights has adams avenue. the college area is flooded with people walking around all the time. downtown is the ultimate urban reclamation project. mission and fashion valley have the friars rd corridor that has everything you could ever imagine. el cajon is hot as blazes but affordable, oceanside is the beach town that blew up big. la jolla has the glitz and glamour when it comes to scenery, but the money spot is still coronado.

every tuesday one of the museums in balboa park is free. so on any given tuesday you can hang out in one of the nicest parks in the city and cruise around some great museums, that is if you feel like going inside.

the mix of people. you will literally see people of every nationality imaginable here. it's a great constant reminder to be not just open, but excited to explore new cultures.

outdoor eating. you'll be hard pressed to find a decent place to eat that doesn't have a patio area. the weather is nice enough here that you really can eat outside pretty much all year long. which leads to;

the weather here is perfect. a little june gloom and the dog days of august are just long enough to make you appreciate the mid 70s to 80s the rest of the year mixed in with the occasional showers.

sports here are a blast, even if they're not watching championship teams. petco park is by far my favorite new-school stadium in the west. the view from anywhere in the park is amazing, there's a field behind center where you can picnic with your family during games, and nothing tops off the ballgame experience like hopping on the trolly with a bunch of pads fans. then there's the classic concrete of qualcomm aka jack murphy stadium. right in the heart of san diego, the constant fireworks shows, charger games, aztec games, and car racing make it a welcome neighbor. and that's just the major sports. san diegans have a local game called over-the-line, that is essentially stickball at the beach, skating, surfing, you name it. great sports town.

when it comes to staying active, san diego has enough touristy stuff to keep the masses entertained; there's the largest zoo in the world, sea world, the wild animal park, legoland, and a bunch of well known beaches to visit. for the more discerning tourist, or interested locals, there's old town, several missions, world class museums, the gaslamp district, miramar, point loma, mission bay, coronado, and quite a few off the beaten path beaches. and for the long-time locals, there are even more beaches. oh yeah, we're also right next to mexico (dangerous) and not too far from the desert, or mountains for the moto-x and snowboarders.

and lastly, as i previously mentioned, the beaches here are awesome. from the hippie scene at ocean beach, to the busyness of mission beach, the scenery at la jolla, the nudists at black's beach, and the awesome break up at swami's. absolutely unreal.

one love, one heart.


If I were Control, you'd already be dead. / If you were Control, you'd already be dead. / Neither of us is dead, so I am obviously not from Control.

la jolla ca

rant time...

mall kiosks.
trying to navigate your way through the mall without getting stopped by some club-thumping goofball selling discount sunglasses is almost impossible. who do you have to have offended to get that job? no i don't want to get sprayed by your new age patouli hair growth remote control massaging hair weave, now let me go so i can get my hot dog on a stick.

barnes and noble is the new library, but with better books. and coffee. i think you would be hard pressed to find anyone under the age of 40 that could give you directions to your closest library easier than the nearest of several b&n. even if they could, ask them where they'd rather hang out. b&n wins hands down. they have comfier chairs, newer books, easier to get membership and no decimal system to decipher. sorry dewey, it's true.

russian mp3 sites. all of the fun of us mp3 sites but at a fraction of the cost. tell em dwight sent you. www.mp3search.ru

i saw somebody's car with an obama sticker covering a kerry sticker. i don't know why i thought that was funny, but i did.

all mexican food is essentially the same. everything stems from the burrito.
tacos=burrito folded in half
tostadas=flat burrito
chimichanga=fried burrito
quesadilla=cheese burrito
enchilada=burrito with sauce
nachos=chopped up burrito
tamale=corn burrito

i heard my favorite line consistently used in prayer the other day, "God please be with those who are sick of this congregation."

did anyone miss kid rock while he was gone? how long do you have to disappear until you can have a comeback?

observations from apt hunting:
'move in special' = good sign
'ring manager in apt 310' = not a good sign
everything near the military base = beat up
everything in rancho bernardo = expensive
everything in pacific beach = beat up + expensive
apt sales people = shop at ross
covered parking = sweet
park at your own risk = not so much

top ten quotes from the office this season:
"every little boy fantasizes about his fairy tale wedding"
"whenever i'm getting married you don't believe me"
"well holly-lujah"
"story's kind of bland. it's about this guy named dumbledore calrissian, who needs to return the ring back to mordor."
"i am bill buttlicker"
"it's pronounced Colonel, it's the highest rank in the military"
"it's like farmaid, but instead of farms fighting against aids, it is us fighting against our own poverty"
"let's get ethical, ethical..."
"the tall guy got engaged"
"must look like the tide at omaha beach"

one love, one heart.


simi/dallas/houston/okc/fresno/bakersfield/san diego/colorado/san marcos/las vegas/long beach/murrieta

hola blogworld:

as you may have noticed there haven't been any post up here in the past 800 years or so, and both of you that read this are probably wondering what happened. to answer the questions both of you have asked:

1: i haven't had an internet connection in a while because our neighbors moved.
b: getting online is not really a big priority.
3: i kinda got blogged out, and switched to journaling for a while.

anyways, i've got a stockpile of stuff to blog about now so never fear, your lunch breaks should be covered for a couple of days. maybe. whatever.

did we have an election? i didn't realize it was this week. i guess i missed everyone's facebook status over the past week. my big question is what is going to happen to Jessie Jackson? will the rainbow coalition break up? i wish i could have been there to see the look of chagrin on his face when we elected our first african american president and it wasn't him. or al sharpton.
i give both senators props for their speeches the other night. sen. obama was a gracious winner, and sen. mccain was gracious in defeat. i think the real winners were the speech writers, who should both have job security for a long time. the biggest losers are the people in hollywood who won't have politics to talk about anymore, and will have to get back to the important issues, like acting.
and to my friends who didn't vote; watch out. P Diddy is is still running his 'Vote or Die' campaign.

i went with some of the ym mafia crew and families this week and this is what i learned:

all in all i came out even, so i'm going to call it a successful trip to vegas. the people there were amazing, and it def rivals nyc in the 'things you won't see anywhere else' category. the cool part is, vegas lived up to all the hype i've heard, it's expensive, kind of dirty, completely lit up at night, and the waitresses there are disturbing.
mi amigo johhnyvegas lit up the roulette tables a couple of nights and did pretty well, and ronald did the up and down thing so all in all i think we had a pretty safe trip to vegas.

oh crap, that's supposed to stay there.

i hate moving. i was packing up all of my stuff into storage, and i bought this 5x10 little piece of real estate to keep my stuff dry, thinking it would be ample room for me and my non-owning-furniture-self. right. saturday rolls around and my little cell is more stuffed than oprah at thanksgiving. that, and i'm pretty sure that we cleaned our apt on a regular basis, but when all of the furniture was moved out you would have thought an entire section of season-ticket-holding raiders fans lived in our apt. the smartest thing i did on this move was setting aside a 'last box out' for everything that was left after we thought we were done packing. because if you have ever moved you know that phenomenon were things keep popping out of every hidden crevice. the fun part was counting how many times we said 'i forgot i had that' during packing week. yeah for moving!

a few weeks ago i went on a hunting trip with dantheman, ronald and a whole crew of guys. and by hunting, i mean camping, because i def do not have a gun, and didn't have it in the budget to buy a deer tag. anyways, colorado was amazing, very good for the soul. we'd get up before dawn every day, go hunt (which is actually quietly hiking for ten minutes, then sitting down quietly for ten) come back for lunch, hang out, go hunt again for a while, cook up some dinner and then sleep. i was real stoked about this trip for several reasons. first off, things are very simple when you are camping like this, you eat, hike and sleep. secondly, it was a blast getting away from the city for a while and being surrounded by nature. i stopped caring about the fact i hadn't had a shower, or what was going on in the rest of the world, or anything outside of what direction i was going to start walking that day. and lastly, the best part of the trip was the silence. actual silence. no distractions, no noise, just me, God, and the nature He created. it's tough going back to church services after spending my own time in worship at the edge of a mountain staring a thousand feet down into a valley. colorado was good for the soul.

right now i'm couch crashing at dantheman's house waiting to hear back from a church in s.d. about a job. i get really nervous about stuff like this, so i'm doing my best not to think about it at all. until now. not having a place to call home is kind of fun. it's nice to be hanging out with people i call family, nice to be out of my old apt, and really cool not having to check all the junk mail every day. in case you were wondering, my new mailing address is: good luck. the funniest part about that is that som-som went ahead and mailed her fundraising letter to dantheman's house so that i would get it. comedy.

cart before the horse.
so in anticipation (hope) of getting a job in sandiago, i've been looking around at apts there. ugh. not fun at all. i'm learning that if the only pictures the apt complex shows on their website are shots of the pool, the place is going to be shaaaaaaady. i've learned this by checking out every shady apt in the miramar/mira mesa area. right now i'm looking in the escondido are if i'm going to live north, or the pb area if i'm going to live south. or i just might buy a boat and live there. if anyone is looking for a roommate that wants to live near the beach... lemme know.

that's what's on the mind right now, the rest are excerpts from my journal over the past few weeks:


thoughts on leaving simi.
i have been feeling very free lately. i'm on a flight back from texas right now, where i've been catching up with friends and family. this is the first time that i feel like i've truly gone on vacation in a while. over the past four years, most of my vacations were short stints that never really let me spend time away from thinking about ministry. one of the lessons i have learned is to take fewer trips, for longer amounts of time, so that i can give my mind a rest from ministry. right now, knowing that i am heading back to absolutely zero crisis, and zero expectations is a very welcome thought.

to answer the question that i'm getting asked the most, i have no idea what i am doing next, or where i am going to end up. my prayers are that i end up in youth ministry somewhere in socal, but in an effort to be free from worry, i am trying my best to allow God to guide me to what's next. keep me in your prayers when it comes to that. i'm excited on calling on God to provide a clear path, and really trying to use this opportunity to stretch my faith. it's a little scary sometimes for me when it comes to putting complete trust in God, but Jesus himself said it best when he told us not to worry. let's just say that i've been looking at a lot of birds lately as a reminder.

i've been doing a lot of reflecting these past few months over my time at simi. it's kind of tough not to dwell a little bit, but i think it's important to go back and examine one's past to make sure that growth occurs. a lot of people have asked if i am going to look for a job in the graphic design field, and while i thought about it at first, i realized that my time at simi would be more meaningful if i can take what i have learned and apply it to another ministry. i don't know if that makes sense to anyone else, but it makes sense when i explain it out loud. anyways, that line of thinking has forced me to ask what i have learned over the last four years.

get filled.
this wednesday i went to the singles class at memorial road in okc, and was truly blessed. it has been a long time that i've been in a class just for me, where i wasn't trying to work out how i could translate what i was learning to my teens. it was such a blessing to be a student, and not a minister for a while. one of the things on my mind lately is how long it has been since i've been taught. yeah, yeah, yeah, i listen to a sermon every week like everyone else. but if we're going to be completely honest, twenty minutes once a week in an auditorium setting hoping you'll be able to a: stay awake and b: get something concrete to push your faith, isn't really enough to keep me filled. don't get me wrong, i get built up by reading the bible, praying, encouragement from the ministry mafia, and the countless books i pour through. however, if we were going to look at my spiritual life in economic terms, my account is deep in the red after spending much more than i am bringing in. the lesson is: get filled so that you can keep pouring out.

divide and conquer.
one thing i have definitely learned is to delegate duties, events, lessons etc to a large group of people. when we set out to define our leadership roles, there were only a couple of people involved. in this dynamic, i take responsibility for everyone's roles, and when expectations are not met it all falls on me. with a larger group of people with fewer responsibilities per person, it is much easier to pick up the slack when one part starts to, for lack of a better term, not show up. also, with more people involved with fewer clearly defined duties it is easier to spot out who on the boat isn't rowing.

the right thing.
one of the things i was struggling with at the end was holding on to doing what i knew was right. i was getting so wrapped up in making others happy, and making sure that 'the ministry is going well', that i lost sight of fighting for things that i believe in, and more importantly what God has called me to do as a christian. basically, i forgot that working for God supersedes working for elders and parents, and those that put their money in the plate.

yes, i will spend time with kiddos that don't have two parents at home, especially when the rest of the family doesn't go to church.
no, i will not stop bringing up the fact that we literally put up a fence around the church.

thoughts from colorado:


thanks for reading,
one love, one heart.