Thursday, June 26, 2008

Stand Up Paddle Surfing--my latest adventure

It's been about three months since I first laid eyes on this fascinating concept known as Stand Up Paddle Surfing! I saw a few random pics in People Magazine of celebrities trying it out in Hawaii followed by one sighting of a SUPer in Avila Beach. In typical "Charity" fashion, I was completely enamored with the idea and quickly began my quest for info--anything I could find on the web, blogs and any other SUP resources to get the scoop on this intriguing new ocean activity. I've spent the last 3 months telling my friends about how much I wanted to try it. But one can only talk about doing something for so long before everyone begins to wonder if it will ever happen! Finally, I decided to put my newfound free time (after graduating) to good use--I decided to try it out!

Went to Santa Barbara last weekend and tried out my first SUPBoard with Surfing Sports owner, AKA "Wardog". I talked with him quite a bit before I even tried a board. My biggest worry was if I would have the ability to balance on the board, but Wardog assured me that he had just the right board for me. And much to my surprise, he did. After plunging into the water and hoisting myself onto the board, I simply paddled out to calm water on my knees and followed the simple instructions to stand up. IT WAS NO PROBLEM! Balancing on the board was much easier than I expected and I had a blast paddling around from the very start. After about an hour of paddling, I was sold and knew that I wanted to get a board.
So I did! A 10'6'' beauty....

I still need to think of a name for her. Got any ideas?

My first "test drive" in Avila Beach....

Looking back on the week, I've been reflecting on the process of finding this new hobby and realized a key lesson for my personal growth...
I never want to lose the ability/drive to try new things and dive into challenges that might seem ridiculous...even to my closest friends. I'm learning that change and challenge is a good thing in my life and God has used it to build a character of openness, adventure and risk-taking. Ultimately, I believe and hope that He uses even these new (and seemingly simple) interests in my life for his Glory and purposes.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Anyone out there?

If the Shell Shack blog still has any faithful readers out there, we apologize for our lack of postings lately. Life has been busy at the Shell Shack: Charity graduates from her Master's in Counseling program this Saturday, Heather took her boards for her RN last Friday, and I made it through student teaching two weeks ago and have been completing last minute projects and filling out teaching applications for next year. Don't worry, the Shell Shack blog will be lit up once again with this summer. So keep checking back, and while you wait, enjoy this nugget I found while researching schools I am applying to.

Regulations for Creston Teachers, circa 1872...
1. Teachers each day will fill lamps, clean chimneys, and trim wicks.

2. Each teacher will bring a bucket of water and scuttle of coal for the day's sessions.

3. Make your pens carefully: you may whittle nibs to the individual taste of pupils.

4. Men teachers may take one evening each week for courting purposes, or two evenings if they go to church regularly. After 10 hours in school, the teachers spend the remaining time reading the Bible or other good books.

5. Women teachers who marry or engage in unseemly conduct will be dismissed.

6. Each teacher should lay aside from each pay a goodly sum of his earnings for his benefit during his declining years so that he will not become a burden on society.

7. Any teacher who smokes, uses liquor in any form, frequents pool or public halls, or gets shaved in a barber shop will give good reason to suspect his worth, intentions, integrity and honesty.

8. The teacher who performs his labors faithfully and without fault for five years will be given an increase of 25 cents per week in his pay, providing the Board of Education approves.

I didn't know shaves in barber shops were suspicious- I will be on guard for those kinds of men from now on. But seriosly, even though I dreamed of being Anne of Green Gables in her teaching days, this makes me thankful I am a circa 2008 teacher!