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to be brought back to life   
11:44pm 17/01/2009
mood: hopeful
i was just thinking about the source of life and passion and strength and love and purpose. i was just thinking about how much i need God in my life. i was just thinking about how i long for my heart to be filled and humbled by amazing grace. i need to be in touch.

the Spirit-filled life...
     (7 sore eyes | burning bright)

10:35pm 21/11/2008
mood: tired
so i have these faint desires to make things and do things creatively and pursue stuff that i have always loved doing. but i have been so tired from the metaphorical 9 to 5 that i rarely make time to actually make things or practice or play out. i need to be singing and playing. i need to do that. it is a waste if i don't...as long as i am here in this city, i really should be playing open mic nights or something. at least a little bit. i think i am going to make myself go play at the sidewalk café on monday night. but there's so much to do at work before thanksgiving, i will probably have to stay late and i always have to wake up early. that's just not cool. i mean, i need the money, so more hours is good. but when am i ever going to sing?

heaven only knows.

i've been thinking about what it is that makes a singer really hit you hard. you know? it's not just having a good-sounding voice or having good vocal technique...it's the soul that comes out of the voice. you have to be convinced that the person really feels what they're singing about. that is, to be moved by what they're singing. and there's something really profound and special to me about singing as an expressive form. it literally, physically comes out from inside of you. maybe that is why i love to sing. and to me it's the best feeling in the world...

oh man i need to watch sister act II. i wish i still had my dvd. i think i have to buy a new one.
     (3 sore eyes | burning bright)

music needs to flow out of me   
01:18am 11/11/2008
mood: yearning
i guess since i rarely ever listen to the radio (and when i do, it's only when i'm home in michigan listening to oldies 104.3), i missed out on a couple good things that have happened in the pop music world (a while ago). since i listen to pandora all the time now, i hear stuff, and i'm like, "wow, this is really good! oh, it's somebody that everyone knows about except i never listened to before!" for instance, the vocal stylings of corinne bailey rae. well, i knew about her before & had heard a couple songs (and my former roommate brynne actually compared me to her about 2 year ago). she's got a great style and a really beautiful voice going on. and then there's john legend, who i guess was probably huge. and i did happen to go to a live concert of his in central park a couple years ago (by chance because my friend albert was going and i happened to be with him). but i kind of forgot about what his music was like...i'm sure i thought it was good and appreciated it, but hearing it lately has been different. like it's really good. those are two singers who just somehow evoke this genuine quality in their voices. it's kind of slaying. you just pause and pay attention to what they're saying.

i guess i'm just slow on the uptake.

i bought christmas lights yesterday and put them up in my room. the small white kind. they're really for year-round use, in my opinion. i didn't get them with the intention of christmas-decorating, i got them to add ambient lighting to my room. i love christmas lights. they make any room better, in my opinion.

i can't wait to go home for christmas. goodnight.
     (4 sore eyes | burning bright)

art and making it   
02:24am 17/01/2008
mood: accomplished
so i have been talking about not making art, and last night i finally made some things. and tonight i continued making some more things. what inspired me was the work of sabrina ward harrison. lauren showed me her website, and it got me interested. she has made some books and other types of work, her art is so authentic to me. she combines journaling, painting, drawing, photography, sculpture, etc. etc.

looking at her work and reading about her life inspired me to break out of the limitations that i have often created for my own creativity. i have never really considered myself much of a drawer or painter because i haven't "excelled" at it the way i have in other media. but i felt like playing and working with words and color and stuff, so i just did it.

i don't know if it's good or bad or whatever, and i guess it really doesn't matter. i find in many of my creative endeavors i feel the need to seek out others' opinions in order to validate my work (even though i know that's not what creating is about). there's just a certain vulnerability involved in creation, especially the kind that expresses your heart and is meaningful to you. i always feel like i'm bursting to share after i've created something because i long to share a bit of my soul with others, i long for them to connect with me through the object or image i have scratched/scrawled/folded/smeared/agitated/sewn/sung my soul into. (i can't help mentioning that is kinda like a horcrux.)

so here is my soul, prithee be gentle with it.

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more of my soul in water, oil, and colorCollapse )
     (5 sore eyes | burning bright)

las palabras de gabriel garcía márquez   
11:58pm 09/01/2008
  la luz es como el agua. cuando uno abre el grifo, sale.

me preocupo que olvidaré todo. a veces pienso que debería irme, volver a europa donde podría mejorar mis lenguas y vivir una vida pequeña, sencilla. pero me parece huir. y no lo puedo hacer. porque siempre he sentido que yo estaba designada o señalada para una vida excepcional. ahora las palabras de alejandra pizarnik. pues estaba hecha para una gran vida, una vida expansiva. ¿y qué?
     (4 sore eyes | burning bright)

art and not making it   
02:48am 09/01/2008
mood: thirsty
there is enough really inspiring art out there that you would think i would be creating.

but for some reason, i am not doing what i would like to do. there just isn't good stuff coming out of me.

oh yeah, i'm not drinking living water. maybe it is that simple.

admirations: music from once, my previous musical collaborations with chris, sufjan stevens' angelic voice, the film bella, a prairie home companion (the radio show and the movie), etc. there's a lot of stuff out there that i'm really into. but lately i feel like i just don't have a story to tell. that's the problem. why should you say something if there's nothing to say? maybe i need to stop trying to tell stories and just read them. when the time comes, it shall come.
     (burning bright)

bella - the movie   
03:00am 08/01/2008
mood: inspired
you must go see the movie BELLA.

it is beautiful in all ways.

a film truly upholding the calling of artists as visionaries meant to reveal truth and beauty in this world.

i just spent hours reading articles and reviews and watching videos about the film, interviews with the director, producers, actors, etc. i am so inspired by what they are doing. they are working toward the things that i aspire to do as well. i want to create and impact the world...i want to show truth and love and cause people to think, to elevate their lives and their souls, to see the beauty and good of their Creator.

oh i pray that i would meet those like-minded people who would be running towards that same goal, who i could partner with in order to create art that would impact people. it's so amazing the way that metanoia films was created and the story of the making of bella. there are so many stories of miracles in the making of that movie that show its making was in His will. maybe one day i could work with them.
     (burning bright)

another dream   
01:48pm 27/12/2007
mood: productive
so last night i had another dream that i remember. i was traveling, i guess with my parents. we stayed at leigh ann's apartment in new york, but it was a different place than the real one. you know how that happens in dreams? like you know where you're supposed to be, but physically it's a different place, it looks different than the place in real life. so we packed up to leave and got on a train to go somewhere else. we were getting ready to get off the train at our stop, but i needed to gather my things. i looked all over the train for my big forest green duffle bag with black straps (which i don't really have in real life). i kept getting tricked by bags that looked similar, but i couldn't find it. it was very frustrating. then i realized i didn't have my purse. i started looking for it frantically because we needed to get off the train. but i couldn't find it, and i was worried because i had the $180 cash that my mom gave me in it. i thought maybe someone stole it. i thought about going back to leigh ann's apartment to look for my stuff. then i don't know what happened, i don't think i found my stuff, but i somehow ended up at some rural house where abbie heffelfinger and all her relatives and friends were. she had a bunch of cousins (don't know if that's true in real life). i showed up in her backyard, it was sloping with grass and there was a lake or a pond or something. and they were going in the water so i went with them and i happened to be wearing a bathing suit underneath my clothes. i felt self-conscious in the dream about wearing a bathing suit, and i wouldn't look down to see what it looked like because i didn't want to know.

isn't that interesting?

i'm working on my "letter of intent" for my teach for america application. it's kinda like writing college essays again. except i guess i've changed a lot, and i kinda know what i want to say now.
     (burning bright)

dreams (not the cranberries song)   
01:00pm 26/12/2007
mood: waking up
every couple nights or so,
you know you pop into my dreams.
i just can't get rid of you
like you got rid of me.
oh but i send my best,
'cause God knows you've seen my worst.

dreams are the weirdest thing. yesterday morning i dreamt this crazy dream where i was waiting in line for a chicken sandwich and deb and larry were working the food counter and alana (this 8 year old girl i know from the marquis) and her brother got hot dogs with meatballs on them. and then i was engaged (i have no idea to whom, i never saw his face or anything, it was like an implied presence) and i had to get an engagement dress and go down into this pool ceremonially like baptism and i told people waiting in line for food to take pictures with their cameras and cell phones and put them on facebook. there are a lot more detailed things i remember from the dream, but i won't write all of them. so strange...

and then last night i had another dream that made me wonder.

it's interesting how dreams can sometimes seem completely random and then sometimes they seem to have some meaning to them. maybe we just attribute meaning because we want to, but i know that people have received messages through dreams in the past.
     (burning bright)

some things haven't changed   
07:07am 20/12/2007
mood: defeated
so i just spent way too much time reading old entries on here. it is seriously like reading a crazy history of my life with big holes missing. and then i have to fill in the holes with whatever memory i still have of those times...it's a curious activity.

it's getting light outside and i hear birds chirping. this is really quite ridiculous because it's the end of conference week and i still haven't finished my psychology conference paper. ha ha ha!!!!! this must be some kind of joke!!! why am i even surprised? has there been a conference time when i haven't done this? i'm so disappointing when it comes to self-discipline. and the sad thing is i've been saying that for years.

the reason i came on here in the first place was to figure out some things chronologically and see if i could find any first-hand accounts of certain life-altering moments where my framework for seeing the world was radically shaken. i know those things happened, but i just wanted to check if i was remembering them accurately or not. i didn't even write anything in here about it. of course i didn't. whenever there's something actually important in my life, i don't write about it in here. all i write is the daily dishwater.

well, back to the dang paper. i don't have much time left. i don't want this writing business to go on forever. sigh.
     (5 sore eyes | burning bright)

a description of my hope for humanity   
02:24pm 15/11/2007
mood: hopeful/burdened/inspired
What'll she look like when she opens her eyes
And sees what she wants to see
Instead of this cold mirror's lies?
And all the pieces complete,
She says with a sigh,
I think I'm ready.

What'll she sound like when she opens her mouth,
And all the phrases sound right as they fall out?
And she says "yes," and she's not scared of the sound?
And she says she's ready.

Will she be soft, will she be strong?
Will she be ready to be wrong?
Will she move too fast or wait too long?
Will she look me in the eyes?
What'll she look like?

What'll she feel like when she opens her heart,
And finds that there just might be a small missing part?
And whether with or with out me, she has to start getting ready.

What'll she look like when she opens her eyes?
Will she see just what I see?
Or will it be a surprise to see that she hasn't changed,
Her eyes are just a little wider now?
And she's getting ready.

["What'll She Look Like" by Stephen Speaks]
     (burning bright)

traditional scottish song   
11:44pm 07/11/2007
mood: cold
ae fond kiss and then we severed;
ae fareweel, alas, forever!
deep in heart-wrung tears i'll pledge thee,
warring sighs and groans i'll wage thee.

i'm obsessed with this song, the verse is by robert burns and it's set to an old scottish tune. it's in the movie a love divided. great irish film that we watched in my psychology class the other day. ooohhh i love music. i love it when it sticks to you and you can't scrub it off. it impresses on your skin and it gets in your blood.
     (burning bright)

back for a snack attack   
01:08am 21/05/2007
mood: reverse culture shock
so, so, so...

i'm back in the united states of america (although i've yet to see any amber waves of grain). i've been in new york for a couple days now, and i'm heading back to michigan tomorrow evening! i'm looking forward to spending time with my family and friends back home!

i was going to write a longer post with more thoughts, but now i'm too tired...uhhhh maybe later...
     (7 sore eyes | burning bright)

throw the dog a bone!   
05:06pm 21/01/2007
mood: normal?
i feel like i should make up for lost time with a few updates about my travels and whatnot. at the moment i'm in nice, france at a great hostel called Villa Saint-Exupery.

i spent the first half of my break from school in barcelona. all of my classmates either left to go home or to travel, so it was a little sad to see everyone go after having spent a semester together. i'm glad i'm staying for the year because i feel like i've only just gotten started, especially with learning the language and figuring out how to best take advantage of living in barcelona. my new classmates and roommates will be arriving in just a few days!

the bcea farewell dinner

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i spent Christmas and New Year with deb & larry. (they're a couple who is on staff with campus crusade, and i know them from NYC. they're kind of like surrogate parents to me in barcelona.) their son who's my age, preston, came for the holidays, so that was really fun because we know each other from before and he's as goofy as me. they also had friends visit from the States during New Year's (11-year-old andrew in the picture below is the son). january 6th was Three Kings Day, which is like the big deal holiday in spain, so i stayed until then to watch the parade and see what the festivities would be like.

andrew and preston playing on the playground

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after that, i headed out to italy to visit alissa (my first-year roommate from sarah lawrence) who is studying in florence.

ponte vecchio, firenze

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alissa and me at the top of the duomo of the cathedral

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i also met up with my friend josh (a classmate from barcelona this past semester) and his friends who were backpacking through europe. it was fun to hang out with them all, and we went to museums and all that florencey stuff. for my birthday we went to venice, and they treated me to a gondola ride, which was really nice.

ilan, maya, me, and josh on the gondola ride in venice (jackie is taking the picture)

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for some reason, there's a pieta with an american flag in venice...(josh and me as the pieta)

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josh, ilan, jackie, and maya

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after spending about 5 days in florence, i went off to paris to explore the city and practice my french! i had a great time by myself, walking around and doing whatever i felt like. i met up with a couple friends from sarah lawrence to have lunch, and other than that had no schedule to stick to. it was lovely. one day, maybe after i graduate, i might go back there to work on my french.

i happened to walk by the moulin rouge while i was exploring montmartre.

crepe stand near the eiffel tower

now i'm here in nice, and i'm going to return to barcelona tomorrow. i met up with my friend nosheen here (i met her at the hostel in aix-en-provence earlier this year), so that was cool.

nosheen and me in our hostel

the weather is so nice here, and the sea is beautiful.

yesterday i went to monaco with some friends i met in the hostel. what a strange place...i don't think i would ever want to live there because all there is there are cars and money.

extra fancy spilt milk and a 5-euro cafe au lait

there are tons of aussies here in my hostel, so i'm perfecting my australian dialect. oh how i love accents! i've gotten to speak chinese, french, spanish, (pretend) italian, and all kinds of english during my trip. and i've met some fun people along the way.

the lone american in a sea of aussies (at eze village, a medieval town between nice and monaco)

anyway, my plans for today and the next couple days are to just have a lot of time alone reading and writing and quieting my heart before the craziness of the new semester comes. i have loved being able to use my french, but i have to get back into spanish mode again!

to see more pictures:
paris: http://slc.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2008043&l=bcc93&id=28600003
nice & monaco: http://slc.facebook.com/album.php?aid=2008044&l=2bf0f&id=28600003

i went to dublin a month and a half ago and i loved it! i'll have to do a make-up post for that trip too...
     (2 sore eyes | burning bright)

03:59pm 16/10/2006
mood: trying to get in the zone
so so so, i realize i have not posted in here in quite some time, and i'm living in spain now and blah blah blah. so yeah, i'm in barcelona right now and it's cool and all. if you want to read some intermittent entries and see pictures, go to my blogger schmogger (www.joanlie.blogspot.com).

i spent this past weekend in aix-en-provence, france with johnazoni.com. i was sick most of the time with a fever and some kind of virus or something, so that sucked, but other than that it was really nice. i met people from all over the world in my hostel. i liked that. i got to use my french, which was really really fun for me. now that i'm back in spain, i am reminded that i know so little spanish, and it can be a bit frustrating at times.

so i'm frenchy and spanishy, but for goodness sake, i'm trying to write a magazine article about my hometown for creative writing class. i really do love northville. it's a lovely place. i'm trying to figure out how to write the paper though. i've decided the article will inevitably be better homes & gardens material, which i'm really ok with. i like reading bh&g. seriously. i think i'm going to be a mother one day and maybe even a home- and/or garden-owner. we'll see.

so how do i deliver five typed & double-spaced pages that encompass the essence of home? am i going to get philosophical? probably. am i going to stay focused? i must. but how? i'm listening to my country folk blues playlist and looking up pictures of the victorian festival and other nostalgic things and it's delightful, but how am i going to put this into words? it's got to be more specific than my vague feelings of driving through the countryside and sitting on the porch at The Store.

i need to find a writers' refuge (i.e. cafe) where i can sit for hours and slave over my computer and pound out this stuff.

c'est difficile.

smell ya later.
     (burning bright)

in new york   
12:05am 07/09/2006
mood: having a conversation
i've been in new york since saturday night and i'll be here until this saturday. i've gotten to see people and hang out and be there for our slcu kick-off events and stuff like that. i'm grateful that i've been able to spend time here. i'm going to post pictures once i get my memory card reader...if it ever makes its way back to me...(i hope it does).

i got my beloved magnolia banana pudding today in the company of joe wiggleston and miranda.

anyway, i'm talking to becky on-line right now and i stopped writing this entry for like...3 hours. so i'm ending it! goodbye!
     (burning bright)

02:07pm 31/08/2006
mood: anxious
HEY so i'm packing all my stuff and getting ready to go. i'm hoping to see a few friends before i go. that all depends on things getting done and cars getting out of shops. SEE YA!
     (1 sore eye | burning bright)

"be prepared!" - the girl scout motto   
01:53am 22/08/2006
mood: should be sleeping
i'm really excited to go back to new york! whoever wants to know, i'm going to be in new york from september 2nd to 9th before i leave for barcelona! i should be on campus at sarah lawrence sunday night and monday night...if you want to let me sleep in your room, let me know! i would be greatly appreciative of such hospitality.

sarah lawrence is a lovely place. if you are there, you should appreciate it and love it. i also can't wait to see everyone in nyc and at slc. it will be so nice to see everyone before i leave pour l'europe. i should be speaking spanish, not french.

i'm leaving really soon. i can't believe it. the summer has been both long and short. i wish i had read more and written more and sung more and musicked more. but that's ok. i had to work, and that's ok. i am trying to accomplish something here-- paying off my loans and paying for school and trying not to be in the darkest pits of debt when i get out of school. i still will be, but at least i can try to make it not be so dark and so deep a pit.

all right here are some pictures. the lighting situation was interesting. the pictures are not.

the idle brain is the devil's playgroundCollapse )
     (3 sore eyes | burning bright)

anathallo and the format   
02:28am 18/08/2006
mood: tired
soooooo tonight i went to see the format and anathallo play at saint andrews in detroit. it was kinda weird seeing the format play because they looked and sounded so different than i expected. i wish they would play a more acoustic, low-key show somewhere where you can sit down. yes, i'm getting old. anathallo was wonderful and moving, as always. i'm always so encouraged by them. overall, it was a good time, but we all got really tired...

i went with lauren, aaron, and john. here are some pictures from before and after. i didn't bring my camera into the show.

pictorial representationsCollapse )

as i was leaving, a girl told me that she remembered me playing at a talent show at northville, and she said that i was good. that was nice.

yesterday i went to chicago to pick up my visa for spain. i got to see michael and talk for a couple hours, so that was really nice. i found out that he's going to be in barcelona to do work in the agape art studio with jonas sometime this year! i'm excited about the coming year. it will be an adventure, i'm sure. on the train back, i somehow ended up sitting next to a girl i knew from high school! i didn't know her very well back then, but we talked for the whole 5 or 6 hour train ride back to ann arbor, and we had some good conversation. it was awesome the way God crossed our paths.

so maybe i will actually start writing here more while i'm abroad so i can keep a log of my experiences for all y'all (whoever cares) to read. we'll see.

i've forever been leaving,
     (6 sore eyes | burning bright)

dear diary, mood: livejournal.   
01:51pm 08/08/2006
mood: lisa frank?
i just got back yesterday from up north 2k6. it was crazy and fun. aaron, john, and i went to lauren's condo in gaylord. we cooked food and watched movies and played catchphrase and took sweet pictures and lots of fun stuff. maybe i'll even post some pictures one day, i haven't done that in a long time. well, i haven't really updated this in, what, five months? something like that.

i'm going to spain in less than a month! i found out yesterday that my visa is ready! but i have to go to chicago again to pick it up. emily left for india on friday. jessie is leaving for greece tomorrow. everyone is going world crazy! (what does that even mean?) adventures.

so anyway, in case you're wondering, i'm at home in northville right now and i have been for the whole summer. i'm working at bravo, the italian restaurant by schoolcraft. it's wild. see ya later.
     (1 sore eye | burning bright)