December 28, 2011

The Christianville Spirit: Christian's Year-In-Review 2011

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparks Your Heart
December 28, 2011- TCS # 280
 Ok, Everyone. It’s that time of year again, it’s getting close to New Year's Eve, Watching the ball drop, hearing Lake Superior State’s hilarious “List of Banned Words” and, saying Happy New Year. Now, of course, before we celebrate and yell “Happy New Year!”, I feel it’s a tradition here at The Christianville Spirit to review the past year of 2011. Now, 2011, I have to say, was quite a crazy year both personally and in the news. Of course, we all know that some of this year was quite a struggle for many people but, I know that next year will be even better for us. So, without further a due, this is “Christian’s Year-in-Review 2011.” So, as with any year-in-review, we start in January. So, My Year of 2011 started off great because as I love to know I begin with a clean slate. At the beginning of the year, I started with the change of my Christianville Spirit tag line, I call a subline. My new 7th sub line was “The Spirit that Sparks Your Heart,”  in my newsletters, which by the way, My Brother helped come up with. On January 8, the same day as the Gabrielle Giffords shooting, I got to be a greeter at the Grand Re-Opening of the Courtyard Campus of Collin College, because it was an open house to show everyone the new parts of it that they had been building. On February 1-5, was what I called the “Super Bowl Historic Monster Storm,” in the Dallas area, in which it iced several inches, along with Negative Wind Chills, and on Friday, February 4, it snowed 6 Inches on top of the ice that was already on the ground. By the way, this “Monster Storm” caused My Mom to break her right wrist, because she wanted to take the trash out and just so she could go outside. We had already stayed in our house for a week. Of course, February 12 was Super Bowl 45, right here in Dallas, and it was awesome to have it here. On February 16, I started writing the “My Heros” series which, told of all the people who are heros to me. In the news, this month, President Mubarak of Egypt stepped down on February 16, due to protests now known as the “Arab Spring.”   On March 11, in the news was the Big 9.0 Earthquake in Japan, which caused a tsunami and a radiation disaster. Now, besides, My Mom’s 50th Birthday and the scare of My Uncle Brian’s Heart Attack on March 31, March and April were both a quiet month. In the news, on April 29 was the famous “Royal Wedding” of Prince William and commoner, Kate Middleton, which Everyone around the world was really excited about. In Late April was, in many people’s opinion, “The Tornado that no one will forget,” the EF-5 Tornado that struck Tuscaloosa and Birmingham, Alabama. Actually, I saw the destruction later on this year and it was a pretty amazing site. On May 1, in the news, was the moment that Americans were waiting for, The Death of Osama Bin Laden. People in Washington, D.C. went into spontaneous celebration. Of Course, in My World, I was caught up in what I’ll called “The Rapture Scare”; where a preacher thought the rapture was going to happen on May 21, 2011. So, in response, I lived and counted down the last things I was going to do like, the Last Time seeing International Flights coming in at The Airport, the Last Dinner, and the Last Saturday. After the “Rapture Scare,” The STW (Spread the Word to End the Word) Girls, which were 3 College Girls taking a trip across the country teaching people about not using The R-Word (which is so offensive to people with special needs). Of Course, The Reason I called them the STW Girls was because they represented the organization, Spread The Word to End The Word. On the week of June 10-12, was what I called “PTLS Week” because it surrounded the PTLS Gathering in Raleigh, NC, which by the way was Awesome. Of Course, a lot of things came out of going to North Carolina for the PTLS Gathering but, one of the many was that I got to try North Carolinian BBQ and it was great. Finally, on June 30, Fox News Channel’s show, “Glenn Beck” ends it’s TV run. Now, The Month of July was an awesome, but quiet month, because on July 20 I got to met Dr. Jennifer Arnold from TLC’s “The Little Couple,” who by the way is a really nice person and friend, because I was going to go through the PTLS Study at Texas Children’s Hospital. In My World, On August 11 was My 24th Birthday which was an awesome day because I got a homemade book filled with postcards from all 50 States coordinated by My PTLS Aunts, Samantha Pennington and Shelly Jones. On August 2o, was My Uncle Craig’s Wedding to his longtime girlfriend, Kellie. We took a great road trip to Ohio for The Wedding, along the way we met up with My PTLS Aunt Samantha Pennington and the next day, met up with The Suchlands for Breakfast. On August 20, I found out that we have a new PTLS Family Member in one of My Favorite Countries, Norway. In the News, The first ever Hurricane(which was a Category 1) named Hurricane Irene struck New York City with luckily, not to much damage. September in My World was quiet but, in the news, the “Occupy Wall Street” Protests started in New York City on September 27. Also, the 10th Anniversary of 9/11 was on September 11. On October 20, In the News, Dictator Mommar Gaddafi of Libya was killed by rebel anti-Gaddafi forces that were sick of him and how he treated everyone.   Back in My World, on October 26 was My Brother, Michael’s 23rd Birthday and I wrote an awesome tribute to him in this newsletter. Finally, to end October, On October 31, the Palestinian Territory became part of the UN. In November was what I call “The Matching Date of The Year”, 11-11-11 on November 11. Now, this year’s “Matching Date” didn’t come without controversy, for example they closed the pyramids in Egypt to prevent people from doing, let’s just say, not-so-good rituals. The following day, November 12 was an awesome day because I got to meet another famous person, Samantha Brown of the Travel Channel, at the Travel and Adventure Show at the Dallas Convention Center. It was so awesome to get to meet her and she is one of my idols. Of Course, on November 16-20 was The 7th Annual “Christian’s Best Friend’s Festival”. One of the Highlights was on the Introduction of Friends and Michael’s Girlfriend, Paula was introduced. My Thanksgiving was awesome because My Grandma Honey and Uncle Brian coming here to Dallas for Thanksgiving, it was awesome to have them here. Now, I have to say that the highlight of Thanksgiving or at least one of them was that Michael’s Girlfriend, Paula made a homemade, Strawberry Rhubarb Pie and it was to die for. Of Course, we finally round to December, the month of My Favorite Time of Year. In Early December, I found out 2 years too late that My Friend and First Crush, Lynee died. so, that kind dampened my spirit for a while but, then I was okay. In The News, which I’ve sure that you’ve heard that North Korea’s Dictator, Kim Jong Il died and that I’m sure many are happy about. Now, as I said before this has been a very crazy year with enough Court Trails to make you wonder including Casey Anthony, Dr. Conrad Murray, and Amanda Knox’s trial in Italy. Also, we’ve had crazy stories like Anthony Wiener, Herman Cain, and others. Now, of course the news it may sound a bit negative but, I will tell something in the news, an update if you will. Remember, the story I told you about Rep. Gabrielle Giffords? She was shot in the head on January 8 and people thought that she was going to die or just be severely paralyzed but, as of December she is talking, doing okay, and returning to as much of a normal life as she can. And that, My Readers, I think would be the most heroic story of the news and it is amazing to me how she did that. So, yes, Gabby Giffords, I consider you a Hero of This Year and Our Time. Now, I was going to tell you about My Mom and I lovely candlelit dinner for Christmas which I called an “Italian Christmas” but, I think here is good way to end this year. All in All, We all have heros in the news that we know nothing about but, I think Gabby Giffords is the most amazing hero in the news and she tells us that you can overcome struggle and triumph over it, even if it takes a year.
( For the last time in 2011)
Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. I hope you have a great year of 2011 and I’ll see you back here for another year of exciting, thought-provoking, and maybe even touching newsletters in 2012. See you then!

December 21, 2011

The Christianville Spirit: The Spirit of Christmas

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparks Your Heart
December 21, 2011- TCS # 279
OK, My Readers. It’s that time of year again and this time I mean it in the positive way. It’s a time of year that everyone knows, it happens on the last week of November, starting on Thanksgiving Day and lasts until New Year’s Day (though in some locations, like in Europe, it goes until January 6). Anyway, this time is year is known as The Holiday Season which also is my favorite time of the year because I love all the happiness and cheer, the lights, the music, and the children’s giddy excitement for Santa Claus. Now, about Santa Claus, if you asked people what they think of him or if they still believe in him, they’ll give you different answers. Some will say that they believe in him, which by the way I still do. Some will say he’s just a title card to America’s Commercialism and yes, a bit of that is true but, not all of it. And, others of course, will tell you that Santa isn’t real but oh my readers, he is real. You See, Santa isn’t ALL about Gifts but, he’s also GIVING, the Spirit of Giving and The Spirit of Christmas, that’s what makes him Santa. Of Course, if everyone just got gifts for themselves and not give to others, then there wouldn’t be Santa Claus or even Christmas, my favorite time of year. In fact, it would probably be the end of the world for me if that happened. But, here’s what I was thinking for the believers of Santa, we all know that Santa comes magically across the world on one night and when we wake up Christmas Morning, we find presents from Santa to Us. But, remember what I said about The Spirit of Giving?, well here’s my question, what does Santa get for Christmas? Most people will think,“Gee, I don’t know” and us believers would say either “The Gift of Sleep”(from traveling the world in one night), “His Wife, Mrs. Claus”, and “A 6 month Vacation”. And, yes those are all wonderful but, does he get any presents? because that would be weird if The Elves made him something from his Toy Work Shop. So, what does he get for Christmas, generally or from us? In most of Santa Movies I’ve seen, I know that he gets a lot of Santa Letters from kids and on Christmas Morning, he enjoys watching us open our gifts and watch the giddy laugher of kids opening their presents. but, for him, as depicted in the movies, that’s good enough. But, I think that he should get a real present, just like we get from him because remember isn’t all about presents, it’s also about Giving and if your a Christian, there’s also Christ’s Birth and that, My Readers is what Christmas is all about. All in all, for the record, you don’t always have to use “Happy Holidays” and I’ve came up with a greeting that respects everyone, “Merry Christma-Hanu-kwanza” or “Merry Christmas-Hanukah-Kwanza”
Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Merry Christmas-Hanukah-Kwanza 

December 14, 2011

The Christianville Spirit: My Fascination of Airports

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparks Your Heart
December 14, 2011- TCS # 278
The thing that I’m going to write on this week, is something I’ve wanted to write about for a while. As most of you know, I love to Travel and everything about Travel so this is no different. This is about what I’ll call “My Fascination of Airports”. Now, of course, it’s not only the airport itself which can be amazing in it’s own and that’s just many of the fascinations. But, the first Fascination is it’s connections, which airlines do and don’t fly there, and which to use for certain routes. All of this comes from reading countless of logs in the “Airlines and Destinations” section of a Wikipedia article about airports that I’m interested in. Now, the route’s that I love are the many airlines and routes to Oslo-Gardermoen Airport (considering how much I love Norway) and two months ago, the fact of Air France flying from Paris-Charles de Gaulle to Cancun, Mexico. Anyway, on the Oslo front, I could tell you the 4 ways to get from Dallas to Oslo. They are as follows..
  • British Airways: Dallas to London-Heathrow, London to Oslo
  • Continental Airlines: Dallas to Newark-Liberty and Newark-Liberty to Oslo
  • Air France: Dallas-Atlanta, Atlanta-Paris, Paris-Oslo
So, if you ever want to fly that route, now you know how. Now, when reading the connections of the airport and figuring out different ways to get somewhere, I have phrases for how many connections you have to make to get to your destination. Of Course, we all know that, “Direct Connection” which is easy as pie (which I learned in my figurative language class) but, for example with flying from Dallas to Oslo, there’s usually more than one connection. For one connection, I use the phrase, “One-fer” like the Continental route is “one-fer” because you just have to connect in Newark. The phase I use is for two connections is “two-fer”. An example of that would be Air France or Air Canada flying Dallas to Toronto-Pearson, to Paris-Charles de Gaulle, and finally to Oslo. After, “Two-fer” is “three-fer” but, I try not to exceed a “two-fer”, because that’s too long of a trip just to get somewhere. I’m sure, you can tell that I know a lot of the names of the airports which also fascinate me because it tells you about the culture and language of the city or country. Now, I can also tell you the names of the major airports in Europe except for Amsterdam’s which I would rather call, “Amsterdam Airport”. The ones I can tell you are London-Heathrow, Rome-Fiumicino(I call it, Roma-Fiumicino because I like to say, “Rome” in Italian), Paris-Charles de Gaulle, Oslo-Gardermoen, and Stockholm-Arlanda. Of Course, driving on Google Maps Street View to Airports is fascinating to because not only do you get to see the entry signs but, you also get to learn the layout of the Airport and act as if you’re going on a real trip. I think the most fascinating airport is Paris- Charles de Gaulle because of how large and big Paris-Charles de Gaulle Airport is. It’s because they have 3 Terminals with Terminal 1 being a work of art and Terminal 2...well, good luck finding where your flight is, because Terminal 2 has separate terminal buildings that are all connected that go from 2A to 2F. Terminal 2G is the only one that doesn’t connect with it’s other sisters of Terminal 2. In fact, in Wikipedia, I read that you have to ride a bus to the other sisters of Terminal 2. So, I’m sure Paris-CDG as they call in shorthand is very confusing but, it is by far, fascinating. Of Course, if you want to see the airport of your dreams, according to Anthony Bourdain, check out Singapore Airport because it has a pool, movies, a media room to watch TV, a spa, and much more. In Fact, Anthony Bourdain says that, “Singapore Airport is worth getting there a couple hours early for.” So, as you can see, Airports are more than just a place that planes fly into and people walk through to get to their destinations. All in all, all Airports are fascinating is one way or another, you just to have to look.
Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Airports are about Connections, Get Connected!                 

December 7, 2011

The Christianville Spirit: The Parting of a Friend

The Christianville Spirit
The Spirit that Sparks Your Heart
December 7, 2011- TCS # 277
So, Last Night, I found out something that struck and shocked me. You See, as I was looking up things on the internet, like the Lauren Scruggs thing, since I thought I went to school with her and because her name sounded familiar. But, when I couldn’t figure it out, I looked in my elementary school yearbook for her picture. Then I asked myself, “I wonder where Lynee is now?” You see, Lynee was one of my very best friends in elementary school. In fact, I had a crush on her. So, I googled her and then, I found something I really didn’t want to believe. It turned out that she died 2 years ago on May 23, 2008, when she was 20. Now, for those of you who don’t know who I’m talking about, I’ve mentioned her before in previous newsletters. You see, back in the great childhood days at Harrington Elementary, I had the biggest crush on Lynee and in fact, it was My First Crush, but I never told her. I would talk and hang out with her at school but, at that time, I wasn’t as Sociable as I am now so, we were just good friends. She and I met in the 4th Grade and she had to move in middle of 5th Grade so, she didn’t get to graduate from elementary school with me. I remember when we had our 5th Grade class picture. I remember now, just from looking at the picture in the yearbook, and I requested that I HAD to sit next to Lynee. I remember the times, while jumping on the trampoline, telling My Brother, Izzy, Alex, as well the Herrick Girls about how much I had a crush on Lynee, and they would playfully shout “Lynee, Lynee, Lynee” and I would blush. After she left Harrington, I was pretty upset about her leaving. Anyway, it was several years later at Jasper Junior High School, sitting in an Aqua Science Class, when role was being called the teacher said, “Lynee Watson” and I thought, “Lynee Watson...?” It took a minute to register in My Head and I looked behind when she said, “Here.” I thought, “Wow, it is her, the girl I crushed on, was my best friend, and went to Harrington with”. So, when I got home, I told My Mom. She asked, “Did she recognize you?” and I told her that I didn’t think so. After getting up the nerve to talk to her days later, I went up to her and told her who I was to jog her memory, and she DID remember. After that, I don’t remember if she was in class anymore, she just disappeared and that was it, I never saw her again. So, I think a couple years ago, I looked her up online and it just gave me her Myspace page but, at that time I wasn’t into Myspace, I was more into IMing friends (by the way, IM means Instant Messaging). So last night when I found out that she had died, it took me by surprise. Of Course, how I found out was that I found an Obituary that said Lynee (middle name) Watson but, the problem was I didn’t know her middle name, however, the picture looked like her. When My Mom saw it, she said that it was her. So, it left me pretty bummed and sad about it because like I said, she was my first crush and she was Very Important to me. What is sadder is that I never told her that I liked her. 
So, when I went to Bed, I said My Prayers and I said, “I Love You, God and I Love You too, Lynee”. So, Now she knows how I felt. All in All, Lynee will be missed a lot.
Thanks for Reading The Christianville Spirit. Never let a moment slip by without telling others that you Like or Love them.