Category Archives: Travis & Rebbeca/Life

The West Village is Gay

Like, “Wow, was that a time warp?” level of gay. What a perfect locale for midwestern Newlyweds to cut their teeth on being in the world, but not of it. Rebbeca is moving a bit faster than I’m ready though. We stepped out of the Christopher Street PATH station and the first thing she said was, “Can we move here?” Seriously.

We discussed (read: I argued to her) the how’s and why’s of not being able to move there while we wandered down to the corner of 4th Street and something like 12th-ish.  (Right about where Hudson turns into 4th and all the cab drivers will tell you that this street doesn’t exist here…there’s also a hidden *cliff dive* bar that’s pretty cheap.) Here we stopped for breakfast and drinks.IMG_1547 (Medium)

I like little bistros that are open to the sidewalk. Love them actually. This is what I’m finding to be my East Coast equivalent to Sir Benedicts (shoutout to Duluth!). Here, you can actually drink and think (or even talk) without stilettod bimbos or posturing meatheads forcing my mind to revolve within the gravity of their world.

And the food is edible too.

And the food is pretty edible too.

We wandered for a while after loosening our minds with mamosa’s and iced Bailey’s (and quieting our bellies with an omelet filled with all kinds of plant life and whatever it is Rebbeca photographed…), and continued our conversation.

Like I aforementioned, the West Village area is awesomely gay. Not totally gay like THE Village, but gay enough to have clean quiet streets and friendly, but unobtrusive locals. I’ve decided that I love gay people…well, men anyway, the truly raving lesbians are still kind of awkward, but that’s more of a social issue than some sort of illegitimate bias. I generally find they tend to be types of people I wouldn’t like anyway, straight or otherwise, so there’s some comfort there.

Gay men are helpful, savvy, and generally good natured. You can usually expect solid advice from them on a topic and they’ll tell you if they don’t know much about whatever you ask them. Assuming you’re the type to consider homosexuality a flaw, what would you prefer to be the serious downfall in a friend? I don’t want to associate with cleptos, liars, whores, or whiners so someone who’s wonderful, but is gay, is pretty flippin sweet in my book.

Like this man who cut Rebbeca’s hair. His little shop is on the lower level on a corner near a giant cathedral in SoHo. Rebbeca wants him to be her new best friend and do her hair at least once a month if not every week.IMG_1552 (Medium)

See how happy she is?!

We explored quite a bit just for a relaxing time away from Newarkness. One of the things I saw that was pretty interesting was handball. There were actually people who got together at a public place with the intent of playing handball. It’s something I’ve done for a lack of options, but not here in the capital of the world that is NYC. People came together to play. Lots of people. They’re behind the ones hooping it up in this picture.

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All that walking around makes you thirsty though. So we found our way back to a place Rebbeca wanted to go. We ate chips and had drinks at a little outdoor mexican place that gave us a time limit and sat us in like a Tetris stack. I didn’t appreciate it very much, but she liked it. I wanted to go across the street to the place for explorers and mad scientists…since that’s pretty much what Rebbeca and I fit to a “T”.

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…where’s that come from and what’s it actually mean, “to a T”?



Now that I’ve actually had some time to reflect, I better post a few pictures from the big day!  The week before was absolutely insane since I’d been traveling up until then and I ended up doing a lot of things at the last minute.  PTL for friends who stayed up late and did EVERYTHING for me that I needed!  It truly was amazing and we had an amazing day!  I’ll post the rest of the day in pictures:

Many thanks to wonderful friends for these great pics!  Sorry about the size and quality of some but I have a lot of  pre-institute work to finish up by next week so I don’t really have time to fix all of it!  It was a perfect day!

May Days – In June

So, I believe I have some updating of this little blog of ours to do and you should be seeing several posts in the next few days regarding everything TFA and life!

In May I spent 5 days out in Newark for what is affectionately known as May Days among the Newark Corps.  It was so great to be there and finally put faces to all of the people that I’d been communicating over the past several months.  One benefit of being a first deadline corps member is that you have a lot of time to get to know people and get as much information about Newark as you can!  The daily session consisted mostly of learning about the achievement gap in Newark and about what we, as teachers, can do about it on a daily basis.  There was also all manners of paperwork, testing, and figerprinting to get done in order to be a teacher in New Jersey as well as plenty of time to just hang out and get to know one another before the intensity of institute hits us all like a ton of bricks.

After my classroom observations (an entire post in and of itself) ended on Friday afternoon I met up with my then fiance, now husband, and a current TFAer and her husband for dinner and a little league baseball game as well as some house hunting.  We spent all day Saturday house hunting and visiting with my mentor for the fall and WE FOUND A HOUSE!  We were so excited when we walked in and looked around, realizing that it was exactly what we had been praying for and at the way that God continues to provide for every one of our needs, even the little “requirements” I had for a place to live!  Sunday was spent relaxing, eating local neighborhood foods, hanging out with the mafia, and flying home relishing in how excited we were to begin our life in Newark!

..for the work to which I have called them…

“In the church at Antioch there were prophets and teachers: Barnabas, Simeon called Niger, Lucius of Cyrene, Manaen, and Saul.  While they were worshiping the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, “Set apart for me Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.” So after they had fasted and prayed, they placed their hands on them and sent them off.” Acts 13v1-3

Throughout the process of pre-marital counseling, planning a wedding, and preparing to move across the country to start a new life, it is easy to lose focus.  It is easy to forget the perspective with which we are called to walk this Earth and to forget the purposes behind the mundane and the stressful times.  It is easy to get wrapped up in needing a place to live, needing a car to drive, needing clothes to wear, needing to meet people, that we forget who the provider of all of those needs is in the first place.  This process of learning wisdom and discernment, of seeking counsel and truly discovering the life to which God has called us is not an easy process but as we know, it is quite the adventure.  Our life may not look like the cultural norm and everyone may not agree with what we’re doing and how we’re doing it, but we remind ourselves often that it is God who has called us to live this sacrificial life, it is Him who has placed His blessing on our lives and given us the greatest opportunity of a lifetime – to give up everything for Him. 

When we need encouragement we look to the words of Luke in the book of Acts and remember that we are not the first ones to leave everything behind or to face trials of many kinds, but that we have the love and support of those who sent us.  The joy and blessings that come in following God’s purposes and callings on our life far outweigh any comfort zone or box we might find ourselves trying to fit within.

Okay, sorry.

It’s been a while since Rebbeca or I have put anything up. No me gusta.

We came back from Norway in a tizzy of trying to plan a wedding. It was almost like our Norwegian/Dutch adventure was the calm before the storm. I don’t understand how divorce rates in America can be so high, because I am never planning a wedding again.


Continue reading

a few pictures from our trip…

teaching as leadership introduction (and a few more pictures)

We’re still traveling, but while enjoying some major down time I (Rebbeca) am also working on Exercises 1 and 2 for my pre-institute work. Apparently all vacations are working vacations and it has made for some very thought provoking reading amidst the bridal magazines!

For anyone interested, here are a few notes I’ve had so far from Exercise 1:
From Teaching as Leadership: Introduction

This short introduction has been rather thought provoking. I have been reading TFA blogs for some time now and it seems like a lot of first year teachers are incredibly bogged down in the challenges that they are facing, rightfully so. I was encouraged by the idealogical way that the introduction was written but paralleled with the everyday lives of the teachers with which I have communicated and whose writings I have read, and more true reality has spoken to me. It takes much perseverance and a more positive attitude than I have ever had before! I rather liked the discussion of “demystifying” teaching practices; it really is nothing magical and the hands on practical examples are life giving to me. I’m looking forward to the rest of the text and to putting some of this into practice!

Part 2 of Exercise 1 to come next…in the meantime here are a few more pictures from our trip:

**Sorry everyone I’ve been working for days and I can’t get the pictures to upload.  I’ll put a few up when we get back stateside.  For now, I better start packing…**