Sunday, October 31, 2010

It's Those Campbells!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Generational Curses, and Bear Lake

When I was visiting Bear Lake in Colorado, I was texting a family member. We started discussing family curses. It made me start thinking, and I came up with a few significant ones.

Weak self control seems to run in my family. The women can't think for themselves, and the men can't display any level of integrity. That's a problem. Almost all the women in my family were/are involved with dangerous men. It's heartbreaking. I was talking with my friend Gloria today. It seems to us that there are two types of women. The first would be the ones who desperately need an organized belief system or they get hopelessly lost. Those people keep going back to abusers, try out new religions, and swing back and forth like pendulums on a clock. They seem to literally
repel healthy individuals, including their own sons and daughters, and simply cling to those who are hopelessly lost themselves. Like the old saying, misery loves company. Then there are those who are ACTUALLY independent, and who can choose to change their situation. Gloria will hopefully comment on this and give you a little more insight in what I mean.

Another curse that runs in our family seems to be the abusive relationships. Some of the women marry men who batter them, physically beating them with pointy-toed boots and strangling them for petty reasons. Then there are the ones who marry men who are neglectful-they just sit around and do drugs, ignore the kids, and are basically useless. And then the type that I was raised with-the ones who emotionally, physically and sexually batter the
children, never once touching the mother but doing savage harm to the helpless ones instead. Those are the sickest, most messed up mother%@$#!* I've ever met.

And, finally, the curse of shunning children. It's a sad but true fact. Younger children beware, one day it may happen to you. It's happened to several of us. Warren was a victim of it, and a few of my aunts, uncles, grandparents, cousins, and now me. You notice the subtle shift of attitude when you walk into the room. Your family members begin to constantly harass you, convincing you that nothing you do is good enough. With me, it started when I found a young man who actually was healthy and really a gentleman. Certain people in my family became jealous, others vindictive. And now, here I am, an orphan in every sense of the word, except somehow not quite.

Now, some family members did TRY to get past their issues. I'll give them that. I got some sweet graduation and wedding gifts, gift cards from people who I know were short on money, and a bottle of wine that we loved. And that shocked and touched me. That those same people would turn around and spread lies about me online? That leaves me very hurt and confused. It's been a long road to where I am now, with a lot of tears and heartache.
The curses remain. I know I'm not the last child to be estranged. I have a brother who I'm almost certain is being treated in the same way I was, and he may end up like me. If the fates allow it, he's going to have more support than I did from the start, because he'll have me. I have amazing support now, from the most unexpected places!

I hope this doesn't sound like I'm bashing any woman. Or man. This is just my opinion and my personal experience. I'm in no place to judge, and I'm happy with that. I mean no one any malice, because I understand that life is seriously too short to spend any amount of time being mad or anything else. It's a waste of time. My grandpa C is really old and frail, and my family is putting me through the torture of not seeing him. They know how much that hurts me-my Queen Mum friend from Tennessee died without me getting to say goodbye and it tore me to pieces. This will be worse. My grandma isn't that young either. And my younger siblings and I have about 80 years on average to be together. That's not long. By ripping me away from them and refusing contact, certain people know they are piercing me with excruciating precision at the very heart.

And those were the thoughts I shared with Candy Man up on the cold mountain. And he held me tight and told me that such things were gut-wrenching. But we can not lose sight of what we have in the face of what we've lost. And here's what I have:

Friends... And...
And last but NOT least...
I consider myself lucky.

Monday, October 25, 2010

In Which We Get Honeymooned.

This is a funny picture, but it's pretty much the best ever
mulled cider. And it is wine at the same time. I couldn't
figure it out. Yummy!

This was our cabin in Estes Park, Colorado. We stayed
at Evergreen cabins on Fall River. It was stunning.

We saw a few big-horned sheep. That was really
awesome!! They were not timid, although they
usually never come near people. They knew
we were honeymoon VIP :)

Me kinda posing on the rocks outside our cabin. The
weather was much colder than Nebraska, but it was
beautiful. Really. The cold ought to stay in Colorado.

This was the amulet charm Aaron got me. It has an
intrinsic design on the front. Aaron's is similar, but
on the back it says, In silence one hears all.

Aaron got some yummy burgers on our trip. I haven't had that
much meat in a very long time. It was really good.

When we arrived at our cabin, we got this sweet welcome
letter and apple cider. Thanks guys!!

And here is where we spent our weekend. It was
so scenic, I'm sure we're going back once a year.

What's Halloween season without a few scares from your
HUSBAND? Thanks Candy Man!

He compensated with a ride on the porch swing. This was
probably my favorite day of all. We had a lot of fun,
the lighting was perfect, and we were just
beginning our adventure. Which made it perfect.

The leaves have really clung this year. Usually by late
October, they've already all fallen.

I just thought this picture was really cool :)

This is how the Candy Man demonstrates a mature,
married man.

The reflection on the water that day was so stunning,
gorgeous and flawless.

And... this was the view from our deck! What a
refreshing way to start a day. We had a hot tub
in the back, and each morning we were served hot cocoa
while watching the sun coming over the treetops.

The Candy Man demonstrates how to stand on a log. He
used the littlest child's head for assistance...

Again, the stunning beauty of the mountains. We saw
this from a tundra off-roader. We took a tour of
Rocky Mountain National Park with the coolest
tour guide ever! We got served beer and
margaritas as we admired the landscape.

The elk are not a timid creature. One of the elk
in this photo had a yellow collar that the tour
guide explained marked her for birth control. Apparently
she is the main population-increaser. Hmm... my family
could use that! haha

It was actually snowing in the state park. I found
this cozy nook, and hid for a few minutes. Then we built
a snowman just to say we did!

We climbed 3 miles to see this waterfall. It was worth
the trip. The view from the top was exquisite. We
could see layers of mountains, powdered in snow, and
a variety of hues from the trees.

Yes, Aaron really caused the water to gush from the
side of the mountain... yes. He has every right to look so proud.

Us at the top of our climb. See what I mean? The
air was extremely fresh, but so thin that it was hard to breathe.

Types of meat we ate: Ostrich, Elk, Buffalo,
Wild Boar, Alligator, and Kangaroo.
Aaron's favorite: Kangaroo.
My favorite: Buffalo.

I'll have more soon. Along with another installment. But for now, I'm exhausted, and Aaron is forcing me to 'get in the spirit' of Halloween and watch the Halloween series, introducing Jamie Lee Curtis. (I like her better with short hair, btw). And so, I'd rather be snuggling with him than updating any more tonight. Enjoy the photos!!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

The Deadliest Sin-English Essay

Angel Bennett

October 14, 2010

English Lit

Neil Harrison

The Deadliest Sin

The boy would not have done it if he had known history would treat him cruelly for it. His young mind, open to fresh experiences, could not resist the love language of touch. And so he gently pressed his lips to hers, breaking the seal that marriage had imprinted on his very identity. From that moment, he became a man branded by society as an adulterer. The torment that would bind him to an inevitable grave whispered white-hot pangs within his soul. His virtue became his vice, and forever he will carry an unforgivable debt of shame. All for one kiss.

As a growing adolescent he had fought tradition, shrugging off cares with reckless abandon. He knew who he was-a lover of music, a humorous soul, and a romancer. When he met the girl of his dreams, he knew. It didn’t take more than the sight of her to enthrall him, sending tingles all the way to his toes. All was right in his simple world. He never betrayed his adoration for her, not even when he saw the face that would play a key part in his tragic tale. A single, passionate night shouldn’t have sent the entire universe spinning into a galaxy of pain, uncertainty, and trauma, but it did…

Had it really been society’s fault? Perhaps. After all, he was merely acting on his natural instincts, and society had always frowned upon that. When a very young boy, had he not been admonished against bringing in the stray birds on broken wing and nourishing them beneath his bed, he would have done so. His intuition was woven into a thread of natural humanity, and not of social etiquette. “Be yourself,” his parents had encouraged him, and this is what he had become. Was himself not good enough, a mockery of mankind?

Or maybe he was simply a faulty product of organized religion. For years he sat mesmerized in the house of God, lost in the doctrine of morale. Augustine’s pleadings bewildered the vulnerable child as he struggled to make sense of a God’s love turned suddenly black in the face of lust. ”Procreation is the only possible excuse for sex, which should be indulged in without lust or pleasure. Aquinas, who seconded Augustine on this point, routinely associated intercourse with such terms as filth, stain, foulness, vileness, and distaste, and asserted that any sexual activity that does not have reproduction as it’s aim is ungodly-and immoral.” (Gini) With such teachings being imprinted in his tender mind, the boyshould have shuddered at the very notion of lustful pleasures.

Had he really committed an act so vile, so repulsive, that the very forces that lent him breath could literally not find it in them to forgive him? It was hard to fathom, because he was a man of so many dimensions. He wore the hats of a musician, brother, son, philosopher, empathizer, and friend. From the work of his own hands flowed haunting melodies, and his words brought tears and smiles simultaneously to those who paused to hear what he might say. With a single, humorous line uttered at the right-or very wrong-moment, he could shift the mood from solemn to absolute hilarity. His humility, blended with enthusiastic love for mankind, gave hope and determination to those blessed to call him their friend.

What then was he to do? Was it his fate to be untrue to himself? Was it destiny that he must hide who he was-what he had become-at all costs? That hardly seemed fair even to those who knew him at his worst. Indeed, that would be a sentence to the death of himself, for he could expect to get lost while hiding his identity. “No man for any considerable period can wear one face to himself and another to the multitude, without finally getting bewildered as to which may be the true. “ (Hawthorne) And yet to come clean of this, his unforgivable sin, would result in the ultimate shunning.

Of such things, what is our defense? Where lies our knowledge? If ever a tale were to end in questions, this one is it. That something could feel so right, and yet be so gravely wrong, no one can explain. A fabrication of conscience, then? If it holds such a bind over the innocent soul, perhaps we ought to rethink our position in this mystery called life. For if we have seemingly but one life to live, should it not be spent in a productive manner; productive defined as being yourself, in a state of bliss, and not in a chaos, a wave in the sea? Should the man follow his innate desires, or his learned moral compass?

“Life is a game in which the rules are constantly changing; nothing spoils a game more than those who take it seriously. Adultery? Phooey! You should never subjugate yourself to another nor seek the subjugation of someone else to yourself. If you follow that Crispian principle you will be able to say ''Phooey,'' too, instead of reaching for your gun when you fancy yourself betrayed.” (Crisp)

Works Cited:

Gini, Al. Born, Daniel, Donald Whitfield, and Mike Levine. “xxii”. The 7 Deadly Sins Sampler. Chicago: Great Foundation, 2007. Print.

Hawthorne, Nathaniel. "XX." The Scarlet Letter. New York: Bantam, 1986. Print.

Crisp, Quentin. "Famous Quotes about Adultery." Book of Famous Quotes - The One Stop for Quotations Lovers. 10 Aug. 2009. Web. 15 Oct. 2010. .

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Inside My Head, Installment #12

I found a new favorite artist. His name is Jaron Wood. He sings the new fun song 'Pray For You', which has become a huge hit in the Midwest US. I haven't heard a song of his I don't love. 'Meantime Girl' is the sweetest brief glimpse. 'Beautiful To Me' became my new favorite song, and it sounds like a more lyrical version of something Candy Man would say to me. :) 'If Happy For You Means I Hate You' is really funny, with a note of derision. When I have money, I am buying Jaron's new album. Doesn't that sound typical of my generation??

Instant gratification. That's something we expect. And it's funny how annoying we can be at attaining it. With our idealistic, fresh notions, we expect to conquer the world in it's pulverized condition, making it new and beautiful. But maybe the focus should be individual. That's another trait of Millennials. We think that individual values are the main priority over social pressure. This may be just because of the overwhelming pressure that the GenXers had to deal with. In a really idealistic time, we chose to settle for reality. And I think that may be a big stressbuster in the end. Cause I don't want to be the ideal, like my family tried to be. I just want to be happy. Truly happy, not giving the appearance of happiness.

I got sick right after the wedding. It started with a stomachache right after I ate anything. No problem, I thought, I just won't eat. I started a liquid diet, which usually cures stomach bugs for me. Except this is day 5 of that fast and I still can't keep food down. I'm starting to wonder if the bugs are getting nastier? Grr. We have a ton of wedding food left over, and I can't eat it. Hopefully soon it goes away.

With that in mind,
This is a real achievement. I tested for my high green belt today. I barely made it through floor exercises and had to sit down, shaking. After a while I felt better, so I went up to free-spar. I had to spar with a black belt. That was a ton of fun. Again, I finished exhausted. My form was spot on. At the end, my instructor asked if I was nervous-he was afraid I was going to faint. I told him I was just really hungry and weak and sick. He was impressed. :) I got my tape with pride and now I'm excited to learn my blue belt forms!! Yay.

I miss these people right here:

Mostly the girl on my right. I just call her Mine. She's in the Air Force. She and I met at summer camp years ago. I smashed a pear in her eye, and she retaliated with ravioli or something. Then I scared her because I had that look of infallible rage on my face (mixed with tomato sauce). She ran away from me. Now we are best friends. She's learning Russian, and since we are one, I'm learning it too. Pojoluista.

She was, in fact, my Maid of Honor. And at night we were cuddle-buddies. Her gift to me was a weekend in a cabin, just her and me. We're going for our joint birthday present. I think we will bring movie series and watch them, and cook yummy hot food, and apple cider, and cookies, and maybe go out and be brave in the cold. Because she's kick-ass that way. Mahwah.

The crazy guy? Oh, that's James. What? I met him at singing school. No, he doesn't live here. He's my Georgia contact. I make it a point to have a good friend in every state, so when I start running like Forrest, I have pit stops with BFFs. He's a goofy character. Broseph!

Today Candy Man and I went walking in the leaves. I love walking in Autumn, with him, because we both enjoy going out of our way to step on the extra-crunchy leaves, and that usually leads to shoving, and maybe tickling, and ends with kissing and laughing. The old neighbor two doors down squints as we walk by, shakes her head, and mutters in disgust. I would too if I were her. We're so in love, sometimes it's sick.

As we walked, we talked. It's interesting to talk to him, because his perception of the world is so new to me. Since we started dating, we've thrown out new ideas for our relationship. I'm not going to swear it will last, but I really think that we have the kind of companion love that will keep us together for many, many years. We're just best friends who hold a lot of common interests. I respect him implicitly. It's SO refreshing to respect a man because he earned it!

I'm really grateful that I got away from my mom's mindset. It's sad because the NLQ people (as a stereotype-the people from mom's forum) seem to have an aversion to men. It's so feminist that it's becoming terribly sad for half the population. I cannot imagine living a life of bitterness towards males. I understand there are a lot of them who were raised wrong, or have wrong values, or never learned to communicate, or deal with anger. But there are some really amazing guys out there still! My dear friend Ethan, a cowboy with boots made for dancing and a heart the size of Texas that is faithful and brave. My Rainbow Boy with his tainted worldview and his passionate resolve. Dane, the redheaded lion whose gave his heart away to a sweet girl and never asked for it back, and melts at the sight of her. Aaron's grandpa, an example of faithfulness with a slightly confused exterior and the good natured heart of a Nebraska bred man. I can't resist the hope that better creatures than women exist in men. I find many women's 'worst traits' to be far less tolerable than men's.

I wrote an awesome paper on Lust. I'll post it here Tuesday, after reading it in class. It took about 40 minutes to write, but I feel like a genius whispered the whole thing into my ear and I just free-handed it. I LOVE papers that come out that way! They are always the best quality.

Candy Man and I are leaving on our honeymoon Wednesday. I will get pictures of as much as you want to see and post them! I'm excited-mountains and autumn weather... mmm. Then we will get back and plunge into the final half of the semester.

I have more to say, but I have to go try and eat first. I'll leave you with the sad piece of news I discovered this morning: Life is a fatal STD. I heard that from a friend in a dream I had, and I laughed. :)

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

...Because I Love You!

I just love this.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

All I Want Is Youuu

This is me with Candy Man's (and now my) Dad...
he loved the fact that he got to give away his
daughter to his son. :)

We didn't have a funnel for the unity sand, so
we had to fill it very slowly!!

Seriously, we could have been in a magazine!
At the end of the wedding ceremony, we
became so giddy the rest of the night was amazing!

My little cousin was the most lovely flower girl ever,
and our friend's little boy was a stud!

The ladies... :D

My dearest friend, Julie, suggested that I get a
family picture to make the day complete. She
thought I could get all the people who mean the most
to me. Besides my bridesmaids, of course. This is my
other momma, Lynne, my sister Em, my sister
Gloria, and my big brother James... and Neil
and Kris-aunt and uncle? It was beautiful.

The mother of the bride-she wore that title
with grace and really held me together all this year. I
love her to pieces.

The men!! What a lot of studs!

Here's the whole wedding party! Love them!

The grandparents. I'm really sad my grandma
and grandpas Chamberlin and Garrison couldn't
come. And Grandpa Bennett-whom I love with all
my heart and I know he was there for me in spirit.

Are we not the most stunning couple? He is so
freakin' cute!

On the far left you see Rainbow Man. He was MY

And... Aaron with the girls. He's such a
ladies man! haha

Those are my favorites. Later I will add reception pictures and
the silly after party pictures. Au Revoir!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Two Hearts, One Love...

The most amazing dress in the world

I LOVE him!!!

Filling our unity sand.

More to come!!! I just thought I'd throw out a few.
Thanks so much for all the well wishes! The
day was more than I could ever have hoped for.

Bachelorette Party!!!!

The bachelorette party was the best!!

I think she wanted me.

Yes, we really did have our own stripper. No, it
wasn't Robert. Yes, I drew on him.

Robert loves everyone.

Like, really.

First of all, she has 3/4 of my heart. Second of all,
she's mine.

Remember the baby I have pictured in earlier posts? This
is her mama!! My Nashville/purple/rose loving friend
like me!

What to eat? Who to text? Lots to talk about!

Tina, my yoga instructor, made these for us. :)

So um, yes, she is my sexiest bridesmaid.

I wish I could have gotten pictures of the party. We had
a total blast!! It was at a yoga studio. We learned
some strip teases, drank mudslides, and learned
how to dance some country dances. It was the best
party ever! Afterwards we went to a restauraunt.

Some of the yummies we ate.

Did I mention my Rainbow man was at the party? He
heard what the bachelor party entailed (football and
gambling) and opted to be one of the girls. I knew he
would. He was a sexy dancer.


We got our nails done...
And this is how we found Aaron when we got
done. Yes, he's really asleep!!