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08 February 2012 @ 12:33 am

The last few days have been quite exciting around here. My younger sister, Jessica, is officially engaged to a nice young man named Sam. Sam is a Seventh-day Adventist from Rwanda, and he is currently studying in Arizona. They will get married by a justice of the peace in March, but they plan to have a church ceremony in May when Sam’s parents can visit from Rwanda. So Jessi is getting married and moving in about a month!

Before Jessi leaves, I am taking her to Celtic Woman “Believe” on March 3rd. I saw the promo for it today around noon and within a half hour had purchased our tickets. I figured it would make a nice belated birthday, congratulations on your engagement/marriage, and farewell gift. I am not sure which of us is more excited about it!

The week that Jessi will be flying out to Arizona, Mom and I will follow with her car and belongings. My older sister, Jennifer, is excited to have us visiting again and has already made plans to take us to the RenFest’s Celtic Days on Sunday, March 18th. This might be my only opportunity attending a Renaissance Faire, so I figured I might as well really enjoy myself by dressing up. So this afternoon, I searched for a medieval-esque dress. I ended up purchasing the entire outfit: a pale yellow long-sleeve chemise with black ribbons, full tri-colored skirt (black, beige, and pale yellow), ornate bodice, 4-bone hoop underskirt, and simple black flats (shoes). I will take some photos when it arrives. It is a childhood dream to play “dress up” in an old-fashioned dress, and now that I have lost so much weight, I feel ready to give it a try.

Speaking of weight loss, since I went completely wheat-free in July 2011, I have lost about 30 lbs. I am now down to a size 8 (standard U.S. womens clothing size). My goal is to lose another 10-15 lbs. by my birthday in April to reach my ideal weight. Last week I went through all of my clothes and set aside the majority of them for donation to Goodwill. Purging my wardrobe of clothes two sizes too big was an amazing feeling! It has taken seven months to get to this point, but it is amazing what something as simple as changing my diet can do. You may be wondering why I went wheat-free… Well, wheat-allergies runs in my family, and as it turns out, in addition to my severe dairy allergy, I also have a wheat-allergy. In many cases where celiac disease is not involved, wheat-allergies are slow-onset, which means that the symptoms are often not noticeable other than some gastrointestinal discomfort and weight-gain. You usually will not even know you have the food allergy unless you completely remove the food from your diet for three or so weeks, to cleanse your system, and then re-introduce that food back into your diet. Then, if you have an allergy, you will notice the symptoms more clearly. At first I thought I was merely wheat-sensitive; however, last week I accidentally consumed a small amount of wheat (one of the chili seasoning packets we used in our homemade chili contained traces of flour). I ended up being sick all weekend and Sunday was the worst. I did not even want to get up Sunday morning, and I could barely function until after lunch.

With two food allergies, dairy and wheat, I am quickly becoming a very difficult individual to invite over for dinner! *lol* And the only place I trust to eat out nowadays is Chipotle’s, especially now that they have added brown rice to their menu options. I usually get a rice bowl with brown rice, black beans, fajita veggies (onions and bell peppers), corn salsa, guacamole, and romaine lettuce. It is vegan and dairy- and wheat-free. Yum! Mom, Jessi, and I ate lunch there yesterday for Jessi’s birthday. =)


Daily Question Meme: Questions 20-25

With these six questions, I have finally caught up on the Daily Questions Meme! [The Questions] Today’s set of questions are very self-reflective, but even after probing the deepest recesses of my mind (heart), I believe that I am contented with my life as it is and with who I am as a person. I know I have a lot to improve upon, but we all grow and mature as people.

1.20 Which activities make you lose track of time?

If I narrow my focus and ignore distractions, then I lose track of time while I draw, do graphic and web design, write, and read.

1.21 If you had to teach something, what would you teach?

I love to teach, especially for secondary, higher education, adult, and professional environments, and my brain is a reservoir of facts and knowledge so the subject matter available would be very diverse. Anything from web design and development, graphics and art tutorials, marketing and advertising, how to use modern technology for Christian witnessing, Bible theology and church history, world history (ancient civilizations through modern times), literature, public speaking, and much more. I may have to refresh myself on certain areas, but as long as I know the subject, I could teach it well and gear the teaching method towards the experience and knowledge level of the class. In addition, I am able to think quickly on my feet.

22. What would you regret not fully doing, being or having in your life?

Despite some emotional ups and downs over the last six years, I have become contented with my life as it is and where the Lord is leading me. When I was comparing myself to others, I would struggle with regret and depression because I felt I was not where I could have been if.. and that prevented me from being able to see and appreciate all of the blessings I was given and experiences I had. I am a twenty-seven year old young woman, and while I might not be where I imagined myself ten years ago as a high school senior, I would not trade my life experiences for anything this world has to offer. Would it be nice to be in a romantic relationship or married with a family of my own? Sure, but I do not regret not having that yet. Would it be nice to already be done with a Masters program and working at a dream job? Sure, but I do not regret my educational journey that allowed me to do so much more than the “regular track”.

I refuse to live a life of regret and self-pity. I prefer to live free from the negative effects of constantly comparing myself to others and finding myself wonting. I prefer to live each day contented and grateful for the blessings I have. When I draw my last breath, may it be said that I lived humbly and honestly with appreciation for what was given to me and loved others as Christ loves me.

1.23 Are you holding onto something that you need to let go of?

Yes. There is an issue that I struggle to relinquish control of to the Lord. I remind myself of 1 Peter 5:6-9, which reads:

“Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you. Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.”

I need to cast it away, but it is very, very hard. When I think I have finally let go, I end up falling right back into it. It is a daily struggle.

1.24 When you are 80-years-old, what will matter to you the most?

That I lived a life that would please the Lord, that I loved and cared for my family and friends, and that I helped as many people in this world as I was able to.

1.25 When is it time to stop calculating risk and rewards and just do what you know is right?

While I do mentally evaluate situations based off potential positive or negative outcomes, my final decisions are always based on what I know is right.


Daily Question Meme: Questions 1-7

Ah, I’m playing a little bit of catch up so I will answer a week’s worth of questions today instead of just one.

1.1 When was the last time you tried something new?

Hmm… a challenge for my memory recall… I would have to say last Sabbath afternoon (January 14th). I tried chunky, organic peanut butter on a celery stick. Point number one, I do not particularly enjoy celery unless it is cooked in a dish; point number two, I have never like the texture of chunky peanut butter; and point number three, I do not care for the oily-ness of most organic peanut butters. However, the snack was okay. Not my favorite snack, but okay. I will stick with creamy peanut butter on rice cakes or tortilla chips and hummus, though.

1.2 Who do you sometimes compare yourself to?

I try not to compare myself to others. That is a bad habit that could possibly lead to two negative outcomes: puffed up self-pride and sense of superiority or deflated self-esteem and sense of inferiority. In my humble opinion, it is better to accept myself for who I am — for all of my good characteristics and personal flaws — and strive to continually overcome my shortcomings by learning from my mistakes. However, I admit that there are times when I unconsciously begin to compare myself with others, and usually it is comparison with my peers in regards to our life and career choices. Still, I do try not to compare myself with others, and I have learned not to compare others to myself either. (There is a subtle difference between the two for me. I hold myself to an extremely high standard, but I have learned over the years that I cannot expect others to meet my standards and that I need to allow them more grace than I would myself.)

1.3 What’s the most sensible thing you’ve ever heard someone say?

I have heard many sensible comments by many sensible people so, unfortunately, I cannot recall any specific thing at this exact moment. Perhaps the most memorable quotation for me (at this time, at least) is Mr. Knightley’s brief but powerful reprimand of Emma in Jane Austen’s classic Emma: “Badly done, Emma. Badly done, indeed.”

1.4 What gets you excited about life?

I believe that life itself is enough to generate excitement. The fact that the Lord granted me life and allowed me to awake this morning is beautiful, and I am very grateful for the time that I have to live.

1.5 What life lesson did you learn the hard way?

Tempering my straight-forwardness and strong opinions by first considering the position of those around me and the importance of displaying compassion and understanding instead of viciously proving my position when I am right. The Lord has matured me a great deal from the time I was a teenager in high school with a relatively short temper and little patience.

1.6 What do you wish you spent more time doing five years ago?

I have an entire list: studying the Bible, spending more time in prayer and communication with the Lord, speaking/reading/practicing my French and Spanish, reading more books for leisure, and finish writing my masterpiece novel Healer’s Quest and various short story ideas.

1.7 Do you ask enough questions or do you settle for what you know?

I am the type of person who absorbs information like a sponge and stores it away for easy retrieval, but before I ask questions, I need time to carefully consider the subject. So I do not have too many questions to actually ask, but when I feel that I have a genuine question, I am not shy about asking.

» The 365 Questions

Just in case you have not already deduced from my answers above nor read elsewhere on my blog, I have an INTJ personality type and, though we are often heralded as the rarest of the sixteen Myers-Briggs personality types, I enjoy the company of such individuals as Susan B. Anthony, Jane Austen, C.S. Lewis, and many others. Oddly, we seem to be quite common online, which leads me to suspect that the Internet attracts our unique combination of analytical thinking and creativity. A friend of mine on DeviantArt and I just recently had a conversation about this very thing.

In regard to the personality tendencies of INTJs, Wikipedia’s article [link] shares:

INTJs are analytical. …they are most comfortable working alone and tend to be less sociable than other types. Nevertheless, INTJs are prepared to lead if no one else seems up to the task, or if they see a major weakness in the current leadership. They tend to be pragmatic, logical, and creative. They have a low tolerance for spin or rampant emotionalism. They are not generally susceptible to catchphrases and do not readily accept authority based on tradition, rank, or title.

Hallmarks of the INTJ include independence of thought and a desire for efficiency. They work best when given autonomy and creative freedom. They harbor an innate desire to express themselves by conceptualizing their own intellectual designs. They have a talent for analyzing and formulating complex theories. INTJs are generally well-suited for occupations within academia, research, consulting, management, science, engineering, and law. They are often acutely aware of their own knowledge and abilities—as well as their limitations and what they don’t know (a quality that tends to distinguish them from INTPs). INTJs thus develop a strong confidence in their ability and talents, making them natural leaders.

Fortunately, through my growth in Christ, learning from my mistakes, and making conscious decisions to change certain aspects about my personality that troubled me even though it was not easy, I believe that I am more approachable, friendly, understanding, poised, and socially adapted than some of my fellow INTJs. Whether this is true or not, despite sometimes coming across rigid, aloof, or reserved, people from all backgrounds and of all ages seem to generally agree that I am approachable, friendly, and a surprising number have told me how “sweet” I am. (Sweet? Really? That is a bit disturbing for me. I do not think I am sweet at all.) I enjoy using my knowledge and skills to help others so that is probably where the “sweetness” comes from. I, personally, believe that part of our duty as men and women to help others.

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. — Ecclessiates 12:13

Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. — Matthew 22:37-40

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God? — Micah 6:8

What about you? What type of personality do you have? Have you overcome any personality tendencies? What or who inspires you to live your life as you do? What do you see as the duty of men and women in the world today?

07 January 2012 @ 09:29 pm

This blog has been a bit silent over the last few weeks. I enjoyed a nice visit with my older sister and her family over the holidays in Arizona and then swung down to Houston, Texas, for the five-day 2011 Generation of Youth for Christ (GYC) conference. (You can read all about my GYC experiences at my Christian blog UNashamed.) I returned home Monday, which happened to be the day my last two classes for my Bachelors in Multimedia Design and Development, with an emphasis in Web Design and Development, began. In addition to re-adjusting to the frigid Virginia temperatures, I also had to get back into an academic mindset. I feel like I have been on the go constantly for three weeks!

It feels a bit surreal that after completing my last two courses, MDD461 Senior Project II and WDD420 Web Accessibility, at the end of February, I will be done with this bachelors degree. I started this program almost exactly two years ago—March 2010—and now I will be done in only eight weeks. Though I have given it some thought, it is time to seriously contemplate my next move. Should I continue with my education and move directly into a Masters program? If so, which one? Should I look for a steady job first and gain a few years of practical experience in the web design/development industry? Should I take a few months off to work on improving a few skillsets (like coding PHP) and earn some money on the side from smaller projects (freelancing, creating and selling WordPress themes, selling stock photography, etc.)?

Since the holidays, despite my current exhaustion with academia, I have felt drawn more towards the idea of going straight into a Masters program… either the Masters of Arts in Communication with emphasis in Digital Communication offered from John Hopkins University, the Washington, D.C., campus, or the Masters of Divinity from Andrews University in Berrien Springs, Michigan. The MA in Communication is the logical “next step”, and no doubt would be highly beneficial if I decide to remain within the digital/multimedia/web industry. However, the Masters of Divinity offers an area of study I have wanted to do since high school. Granted, it would take longer to complete because I would have to do Track 2, for those without a bachelors in theology and/or religion, in order to take a few “catch up” courses like Hebrew and Greek language classes, etc. Reading through the requirements makes my heart about stop from nervousness, but I am really, really leaning towards the Masters in Divinity. It would take more time to complete (at least three years), but I want to be academically challenged again (the Bachelors in Multimedia, while practical, was not exactly mentally or intellectually stimulating) and to earn a Masters in an area that I feel is personally worthwhile. I mean, if I am going to invest so much time, energy, and money into getting a Masters, I might as well get the one I that really want, right?

I do not know why looking at graduate programs makes me so apprehensive, particularly the idea of a thesis and defending the thesis orally. My writing skills are superb, and I thoroughly enjoy speaking on subjects that interest me. Graduate courses would be challenging, but nothing I cannot handle with prayer and hard work. I have maintained a 4.0 GPA through four years of high school and now six years of college/university, a feat that is not easily accomplished. I should not feel any nervousness, but I do and that, in turn, makes me indecisive. The logical thing would be to either get a job with a steady income, start paying back student loans, and begin working on a Masters in Communication part-time. However, what I want to do is the Masters of Divinity, illogical and challenging (intellectually and financially) as it would be. There is also no garauntee I would even be accepted into the Divinity program at Andrews so I could be getting my hopes up for nothing; but if I am rejected, at least I would have tried and I could then move on to plan B (either finding a job or applying for the MA in Communications at John Hopkins).

I will have to make the decision soon—soon meaning by Monday—because it can take up to six months for an application to be processed and Andrews recommends Track 2 students begin during a summer semester, since most of the pre-requisite courses are offered during the summer.

07 December 2010 @ 01:47 pm
Literally. Two or three days ago, a small part of the inside of my cheek became swollen and it is right beside my back tooth on the left side. I am not sure it it was because something jabbed it really hard while I was eating or if it was reacting to some kind of spice. Anyway, every time I open and shut my jaw, the swollen part is pinched between the upper and lower teeth. This has made eating, chewing, talking, and even swallowing somewhat painful so I ended up putting some of that numbing gel on the swollen part and the gum around that back tooth.

I just want the swelling to go down so I can concentrate. Especially since this is Week 7 and next week is Finals Week. I need to do my required posting and assignments as well as study for my final exam in the Information Design class and do my final project for the Web Animation class. I really need to be able to focus and concentrate right now.

I am also in charge of putting together a small get-together on Saturday, December 18th, for single adults at my local church. (We are trying to get a Single Adults Ministry up and running.) I have the basic idea, made one of the first announcements that was sent out through the email list, but I need to actually sit down and plan it out. I also want to design a half-sheet flyer to insert in the church bulletins this Sabbath and on the 18th.

There is so much on my plate right now that I really need to schedule my time better if I want to get everything done. *sigh*
30 November 2010 @ 04:15 pm
Today I was contemplating why I have a Facebook account (Answer: To keep up with friends and family), and what I tend to post or talk about most on my account. A good deal of my Facebook status updates, links, and notes reflect my personal beliefs and religious views. There is the saying that three topics you should never discuss are religion, politics, and child-rearing, and, of course, I know that the topic of religion can be a divisive one filled with high emotions and the tendency to lash out in defense or accusations. Yet I believe that mature individuals can have an amiable discussion on religion without the loss of composure or insulting one another's positions and views. Sometimes those involved must come to the conclusion that they disagree, but just because two people disagree does not mean they cannot be civil and remain friends. All my life, I have had associates, acquaintances, and friends with religious beliefs different from my own, and we have always respected one another.

I feel that religion plays an important role for humanity. As intellectual beings, we long for a deeper purpose to our existence, a meaning and cause for the evil and suffering that occurs in this world, and a hope that there is something more, something better to look forward to. Religion can provide us with these answers. It also provides us with an ethical and moral standard by which we should live our lives and govern our relationships with one another. Unfortunately, the very thing that satisfies these needs within us has also been twisted by various men and cultures throughout history to justify doing harm, dominating, and perpetuating hatred and prejudice. It is also no secret that religion has been used to instigate wars. Due to the sheer volume of beliefs that can be found in the world, there are many disagreements and conflicting views. Even within the same religion there are often different opinions. Just like everything else is this world, religion is not perfect.

What are my personal beliefs? For many years I studied, researched, and church-hopped from Christian denomination to denomination. I even briefly attended a Catholic private school for the first half of seventh grade. I was never the type to blindly trust what others say, especially on such personal matters as religious views since what one believes is reflected in how one lives, behaves, and interacts with others. Eventually, in 2002, I found a church whose fundamental beliefs are the closest to what I have come to believe myself. After an exhaustive Bible and history study, I was baptized into the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Adventist church is a worldwide Protestant denomination and is well known for our community services, which include medical centers, educational institutes, dedication to healthy living, and development/relief work.

So who are Seventh-day Adventists and what do we believe? We are a Christian Protestant denomination. As with most other Protestant denominations, we believe is Jesus Christ as the Son of God, the foretold Messiah who was crucified as the ultimate sacrifice to redeem fallen humanity from sin, rose again the third day, and ascended into heaven; we believe that salvation is a free gift received by grace through faith, not by works; we hold the Bible, Old and New Testaments, as the inspired Word of God and the teachings therein remain relevant to our lives today; we look forward to Christ's second coming; and other beliefs shared by our Protestant brethren. We do differ from some, though not all, Protestant churches on certain doctrines, such as baptism, hell, the immortality of the soul, etc. Perhaps the most obvious difference is that we choose to observe and worship on the Biblical Sabbath (Friday sunset to Saturday sunset) according to the commands and instructions in God's Word, which is where the "seventh-day" part of our church name comes from. For more information on our beliefs, please visit the church's official website. [Link to the Fundamental Beliefs of the Seventh-day Adventist Church.]

For me, religion is not just archaic traditions and rituals, a collection of meaningless myths and fairytales, or a label to identify myself with a desired "group". My beliefs are a way of life. What I believe is an integral part of who I am as a person, provides my moral and ethical center, plays an important role in decision making, and is reflected in my daily life through my attitude, behavior, how I view the world, and how I relate and treat others.

Though I have been a Christian my entire life, I have found religions fascinating and have spent a great deal of time researching and studying not only the various denominations within Christianity but also many of the world's major religions. Though I may not personally agree with the beliefs and teachings of these various religious groups, I respect everyone's God-given right and freedom to choose what they wish to believe in (or not believe in) as long as their choices do not cause intentional and malicious harm to others. There is a phrase that has become somewhat of a buzz word over the last few decades: "religious tolerance". But I do not believe in "religious tolerance". I believe in religious liberty. To some, the two phrases are interchangeable, but to me, there are subtle differences. Religious tolerance has come to mean an acceptance of all religions, beliefs, and practices and any disagreement labels you as narrow-minded and hateful of others. In recent years, I have seen "religious tolerance" used to justify intolerance of any and all different opinions and views. Religious liberty, on the other hand, is acknowledging the freedom of religious opinion, expression, and worship even when one may disagree and protects the individual's right to observe their religion. Do you see the subtle difference? Though I am not Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist, Catholic, Wiccan, etc. and may even disagree with their teachings and beliefs on a personal level, I fully respect the right of those who do adhere to these religions to freely worship and practice their religion of choice. Just as I expect others to respect my beliefs and method of worship. That is religious liberty, and, in my opinion, it is a better way to live.

Just out of sheer curiosity, I decided to conduct a small survey on the religious views of my Facebook friends. Here is the break down:


Religion Not Specified = 31
Christian = 7
Christian - Adventist = 36
Christian - Baptist = 6
Christian - Episcopalian = 4
Christian - Pentecostal = 1
Christian - Presbyterian = 2
Catholic = 1
Jewish = 1
Druid = 1
Witch/Holistic = 1

If you are so inclined, please feel free to share your opinion and thoughts on religion, in general or your own personal beliefs. Please remember to keep your comments civil. No flaming, spamming, or insulting allowed.
10 November 2010 @ 02:43 pm
I caught the very end of an episode of Keeping the Faith [link] on Hope Channel [link]. They had a guest speaker, Alison Armstrong, who was discussing some of the differences between men and women, how each gender processes information, and she had some advice for women on how to better communicate with men. The only reason I did not turn off the program is because the topic discussed would be considered part of Sociology, and my younger sister is searching for a topic for her sociology paper.

Then Alison said something that caught my attention: men typically are "Single Focused" while women typically have "Diffused Awareness" (aka multi-tasking). This is one reason, she explained, why women can walk into a room, scan it, see everything that is out of place, and will multitask to do everything that she sees needs to get done. Men, on the other hand, will walk right passed the overturned pillows, random shoe, and stack of newspapers on his way to the one specific item he is looking forward.

Though, to be completely honest, it seems to me more like the results of bad habits and behaviors that the individuals are taught from early childhood. In today's society, many still hold to the belief that "housework" is a woman's job so women are more likely to see a messy house and clean it while men, who have always had a woman do their cleaning for them (mom, girlfriend, wife) will simply not clean up. This is a horrific social custom that people need to stop excusing and perpetuating under the guise of "gender differences", and it is insulting to men and women. How this twisted ideology is put into practice today is not even compatible with history. Even relatively shallow research into life in late 1800s will uncover just how fastidious, organized, and methodical men and women used to be in comparison to today's society. I do not think "single focused" or "diffuse awareness" are traits dependent upon gender, but a combination of personality traits and habits learned from one's environment.

The more I read articles or hear about the so-called gender differences between typical men and typical women, the more I realize that I am NOT what is considered a typical woman for today's American society. Certainly, there are others, men and women, who feel the same way I do, that you do not fit into the stereotype of what our society claims a man or woman is or should be.

In many areas, I have more in common with the way men think then the way women do, and this explains why for the most of my childhood and teen years, I had more male friends than female. Not that I was a tomboy, but I connected better with guys. In fact, in elementary school, my closest friend (excluding my two sisters) was a boy, Jason, who lived in our neighborhood. My first real female friend was Laura M. in sixth grade, and to be completely honest, I did not feel like I had another close female friend until 11th grade when I met Laura H. We ended up graduating together and even attended the same two-year college. The rest of my close friends were guys, and even in high school, I would often hang out with a group of guys before school and during lunch. To be completely honest, I felt more comfortable around guys than I did girls, because I had nothing in common with girls, could not stand their girl talk and girly behavior, and many times I cannot understand the way a typical girl thinks.

Everything about my personality and my likes/dislikes say that I should have pursued a career in a complex and challenging field, such as science, military, law, medicine, administration/management, or computer science. Ironically, my first career choice was marine biology, then I contemplated military service, then I considered international affairs and languages. Areas, when you think about it, typically male-dominated fields. Now I am working towards a degree in Web Design and Development, which is a unique combination of logic (development = HTML, CSS, scripting languages, etc.) and creativity (design = art, graphics, etc.) and also a male-dominated field.

I guess the point of this entry is that I have never fit in the typical woman mold. My mother instilled in me a sense of decorum, of appropriate "lady-like" behavior, yet at the same time she did not raise me to be a girly-girl with a damsel-in-distress mentality. In middle school, I was the girl who caught the frog terrorizing the girls' bathroom and took it outside while the other girls squealed. In high school, I was the one who climbed on to a desk in the JROTC room to kill the spider dangling from the ceiling while the other girls acted like wimpy idiots and the guys simply ignored it. While studying abroad, I was the one that tracked down one of the girls who had wandered off from our group, found her being pressured by two rather aggressive Russian souvenir vendors into buying things she didn't want, and I forcibly dragged her out of there while telling the Russian guys to back off or else.

In many things, I feel like I have more in common with men, and interestingly, I do not see myself as "a woman", but as a person. I also do not see others as "men" or "women", but as people. Simply put: I do not see nor understand the need for a gender distinction or traditional gender roles in today's society. I value intellect, knowledge, clarity, authenticity, self-confidence, and responsibility, in myself and others. I know what I know, and I know what I do not know. My brain soaks up an enormous amount of information, which it sorts and then I can retrieve it in the future, often to the amazement of those around me. I expect to be treated with respect by others just as I treat others with respect, no matter my/their age, gender, nationality, ethnicity, or education. I have never tried to change myself to fit in with the crowd or a group or even to fit within a stereotype, nor will I ever do so. However, comparing who I was when I was eighteen to who I am today, in many areas I have matured and grown. I can better empathize with others (which was not a strong trait, believe me), I am more patient (though I have a long way to go still), and I can be a follower/supporter (though it takes a great deal of effort on my part to suppress my tendency to usurp leadership while remaining in the background). I feel most comfortable in a position of leadership and authority, which does not really bode well in the romance department.

Actually, it seems almost everything about me does not bode well for a successful romantic relationship. It is no wonder I have never dated. What man in his right mind would want a partner like me? Colleague, sure. Friend, no problem. Lover, not so much. Though underneath my intellectual, rational exterior, I admit that I am a hopeless romantic at heart and want some heroic knight to sweep me off my feet. That probably explains the characters of Martindale and Bethany in my Healer's Quest novels. Even though I had no intention of doing so, Martindale has come to embody my ideal hero, albeit with a tormented past and unhappy childhood (mean author that I am), and Bethany is, in some ways, a reflection of me.

So, bringing this train of thought to a close, I am anything but a typical woman, and when the topic of gender differences comes up, I often find myself irritated because I do not fit into the "typical woman" category nor do I want to. Every person is different, and to try to fit every single human being into small boxes built out of ignorance, antiquated prejudice, and social stereotypes is a dis-serve to everyone.
09 June 2010 @ 01:58 am
I took a Personality Test [link] and here is the result:

Ta-dah, your personality type is INTJ! INTJ stands for Introversion, iNtuition, Thinking, Judgment.

Introverted (I) 82%Extraverted (E) 18%
Intuitive (N) 55%Sensing (S) 45%
Thinking (T) 55%Feeling (F) 45%
Judging (J) 82%Perceiving (P) 18%

Taken from Wikipedia:

  • I – Introversion preferred to Extraversion: INTJs tend to be quiet and reserved. They generally prefer interacting with a few close friends rather than a wide circle of acquaintances, and they expend energy in social situations (whereas extraverts gain energy).

  • N – iNtuition preferred to Sensing: INTJs tend to be more abstract than concrete. They focus their attention on the big picture rather than the details and on future possibilities rather than immediate realities.

  • T – Thinking preferred to Feeling: INTJs tend to value objective criteria above personal preference. When making decisions they generally give more weight to logic than to social considerations.

  • J – Judgment preferred to Perception: INTJs tend to plan their activities and make decisions early. They derive a sense of control through predictability, which to perceptive types may seem limiting.

Hmm... I disagree slightly. I think I am very detailed oriented and I do not plan my activities and decisions early. If I am completely honest with myself, I tend to procrastination on decisions due to fear of change and the unknown. (Me? Afraid of change and the unknown? Weird, right? That is way I hardly ever share that with anyone.) And I do not think I am that introverted, though I am definitely more introverted than extroverted.

Here is more about INTJs: INTJ Profile. After reading this, I must admit that I am definitely INTJ. The part about personal relationships and, particularly, romance fits me to a T. *sigh* How sad! -_-'
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07 June 2010 @ 11:30 am
Do you like your birth name? If you had the opportunity to change it, would you? What new name would you choose?

There has not been a single moment in my life where I have disliked, hated, or desired to change my name. Jacquelyn is not a common name – I think there were three "Jackies" or variations thereof in my entire high school. I do feel a little bit sorry for my sisters, Jennifer and Jessica, since they had to suffer having multiple Jennifers and Jessicas in almost all of their classes during school.

I especially love the way my mother chose to spell both my given name, Jacquelyn, and my nickname, Jacqui. The visual balance as the "J" and "l" reach upward while the "q" and y" hang down is beautiful.

Not to mention I love my entire name: Jacquelyn Jean-Marie Fisher. Not only does it have a nice flow when spoken aloud, but it looks great written out! And when I become a published author, I have a few interesing variations I can use: Jacquelyn Jean-Marie Fisher, Jacquelyn J.M. Fisher, J.J.M. Fisher, Jean-Marie Fisher, etc. =D

Yeah... I love my name!

For awhile in six grade, I tried to get people to call me J.J., but that only lasted about the span of five minutes. Everyone thinks of me as "Jacquelyn" or "Jacqui" or "Fisher". When I graded from high school, I even switched from using Internet aliases (Wavedancer, Daiji, etc.) to using my first name. On Christian sites, I have gotten into the habit of signing all my posts: "Your sister in Christ, ~Jacquelyn" and even in my university classes, I end each discussion post with "~Jacquelyn". I cannot help it. The name is a part of who I am. Hopefully, I will never have to go into the witness protection program and change my name and identity!
22 October 2009 @ 09:27 pm
There is so much I need to do, but so little time! *head desk*

Spiritual Needs

  1. Bible Studies:
    • Outline Youth Sabbath School (SS) lesson for Sabbath

    • Review Adult SS lesson for Vespers

    • As SS Superintendent for this Sabbath, I need to find a mission story, Scripture verse, and opening hymn and get all of that information to the church secretary tomorrow for the bulletins (I almost forgot about this!)

    • Plan for Amazing Adventures kids Bible study program for a young family at church starting this Sabbath afternoon and every Sabbath thereafter

    • Attend In the Footsteps of Paul sessions every Saturday, Sunday, and Tuesday evenings

  2. Barstow SDA Church's website:
    • Start conceptualizing the new design

    • Draft a letter to leaders of various church ministries about the church website and getting a "blurp" about the ministries up

    • Finish the "About" and "History" pages

  3. Church Duties:
    • Organize Youth Department and start planning activities

    • Prepare for Investment Secretary duties and plan a goal for 2010

  4. Other:


  • Continuing preparing for NaNoWriMo

  • Go to the High Desert area (California) NaNoWriMo kick-off Write-In on Nov. 1st [details]

  • November: write 2000 words a day (except 5 free "no writing" days)


  • Finish coding my personal site's new design

  • Start the beach painting for my friend, Ebony

  • Continue looking into universities offering degree in History

  • Read more on early Church History

I'm certain there are other things I have forgotten to mention. I need to go back to using a day-planner just to keep everything straight and organized! Anyway, now that I see my To Do List written out, I feel exhausted and am going to sleep.

Until the morrow, my friends! Good night!
Current Mood: exhaustedexhausted