Showing posts from May, 2017

Worship Conference 2017: Singing a New Tune

Ever since I first started singing harmony in church, I've considered myself an alto. My mother enjoys singing harmony in the hymn singing at church, so I simply picked it up from her. Thanks to her, I became very adept at sight-reading in high school and took a course in college (it was called Sight Singing and Ear Training) to get even better. While at Martin Luther College, I also took voice lessons for a semester. It was to fulfill a requirement, but it ended up stretching me because I'd never done that kind of vocal work before. It's so different from singing in a choir! My teacher, Jodi, listened to me sing and gave me a ton of helpful things to do with my body and my breathing to get me to sing at my best. But she also revealed to me something very surprising: I am not a natural alto! This shouldn't have surprised me, to be honest. My mother and sister both are sopranos and have a very wide vocal range. I just figured I was the opposite of them, because

Mastering All the Travel Tips

When going on a major vacation, it is important to go in with as much travel knowledge as possible. I have followed that advice to the letter when going on my many Walt Disney World vacations! Because I glean as many tips as I can, my vacations are full and fun. Going overseas is an entirely different matter. I can't use many of my Disney tips and tricks when touring a major European city. I need to get an entirely new set of trips that are centered on the places where I'm about to go. I am not a world-traveling rookie; I have been to Mexico, China, and the Czech Republic before. In all of those trips, there were things that I know could have been done better had I done a little studying beforehand. So what are the most important tips I've been seeing, and which ones am I going to try to follow? Read on: Use Public Transportation I did a mini-trip to Chicago back in January, and I bought a Ventra 1-day card to use on Chicago buses and trains. I was anticipating a

Summer Crazy is About to Begin

It's January. There are approximately five months until summer break. I look at my summer and go, "I have so much free time! Let me fill this in with a few fun things." It's May. There's two weeks until summer break. I look at my summer and go, "I have zero free time! Why did I plan so much stuff?!" Every summer seems to go like that for me and a lot of people I know. We start making plans, finalizing trips, scheduling conferences, slotting in work time, and suddenly there's no free time left. Every weekday or weekend has a party, a vacation, or a commitment. Crazy! This summer is no different for me. I thought I had some time between the end of school and the 2017 WELS Conference on Worship, Music, and the Arts (AKA Worship Conference). In reality, there's barely a week in between. After that I have another single week before I'm off to Europe, hitting Great Britain, Germany, and the Czech Republic. I'm visiting tourist sites,

The 5Kx3 Challenge Week 3: Titan Trot

Introduction Article Week 1: Seminary Scurry Week 2: Run for the Buds This week marked the final run in my challenge, and it was a great one. The weather was finally perfect: 60 degrees and partly cloudy with minimal wind. It was a huge contrast to the previous two weekends, which were full of rain, clouds, and that blasted wind! I was so glad to see it gone this time. "Put the Gun Down" by ZZ Ward Since the weather was great, I could wear shorts and a t-shirt and be comfortable. It was my last time wearing the shoes I bought three years ago; Brooks Addiction 11. I just purchased Addiction 12 and I'm ready to break them in! I had suspected for a while that my knee pain was because I'd worn down my shoes and they weren't giving me the proper comfort. But it might have just been because I'd been overtraining. I only was running four times a week, but it was too much. "Electric Avenue" by Eddy Grant This week, however, I took it down qui

The 5Kx3 Challenge Week 2: Run for the Buds

"You're Welcome" by Dwayne Johnson After last week's cold, windy race in Mequon, I was hoping for a nice, sunny race in St. Joseph and Benton Harbor. Alas, when the day began, it was sunny, but it also brought a heavy dose of wind off of Lake Michigan. So while it looked like a beautiful day while we were inside, going outside meant having to deal with that disgusting wind. I did a much better job dressing, even with the windy weather. I wore capri pants, a long-sleeved shirt, a short-sleeved shirt, and my blue hooded jacket. I was going to take the jacket off for the race, but that was before I stepped outside. Then the jacket stayed. "Light and Day" by the Polyphonic Spree My mother surprised me the day before by coming to an event at my school, and she said she was going to stick around for my race! We drove over to St. Joseph and arrived about an hour before the race began. I thought that this race was going to be very popular, and they only had

The 5Kx3 Challenge Week 1: The Seminary Scurry

My running playlist for the Seminary Scurry is labeled in bold. These make great songs with which to work out! "I'm Gonna Be (500 Miles)" by The Proclaimers After running in beautiful weather here in Michigan on Monday and Tuesday, the conditions worsened over the end of the week. By Saturday in Wisconsin, the weather dawned cold, crisp, and windy.  I think I would have been fine if the weather had been cold, but it was the biting  wind  that really made me nervous. As a result, my planned running gear changed. I wore capris leggings, yoga pants, a turtleneck long-sleeved tech shirt, my long sleeve lightweight hoodie, and a workout jacket with hood. I also packed my ski hat, because I'm a wuss.  "Silhouette" by KANA-BOON I've heard that you should plan your running clothes based on temperatures 20 degrees warmer than it actually is. But on the morning of the race I end up scoffing that notion and wearing an extra layer. This time arou