Thursday, September 23, 2010

A Magical Love Story

Lately I have been working on some fall cleaning to get rid of old junk.  Throughout junk cleaning, I came across some fun memories.  Today when I was going through files on my computer I came across a story.  This story was written [By Lorah, Rachel, Josh, and I] for our friends Brian and Megan.  Rachel read the story at their wedding reception.

Once upon a time, in the land of surfer dudes and movie stars, mountains and beaches, national parks and happening cities, there lived a young man named Brian.  He was not exactly a surfer dude, and he was decidedly not a big name in Hollywood. He was, in fact, a Dutch Reformed guy who grew up on a dairy. All his life, he dreamed of being a millionaire businessman, and when he graduated from Ontario Christian High school he enrolled at Providence Christian College to fulfill those aspirations.

Meanwhile, far North in the corner rainy state of Washington, in the town of Lynden a lovely girl by the name of Megan Hemnes had grown up. She was a country girl to the core, with a great love for horses, an affinity to pink and green, and an increasing love for coffee. She was also, coincidentally, one of the chosen people: Dutch and reformed! Megan had never had a consuming passion to become a master surgeon, a politician, or a university professor. But, like most of her fellow high-school graduates, she applied to college, not sure about what she would major in.  Little did she know, God had some plans for her time at college that went beyond preparing for a future career.  As it turned out, she (with some trepidation) ended up deciding on the tiny school of Providence Christian College in Ontario, California as well.

Megan’s first Sunday in the magical land of California, she and her parents headed to a near-by church, named First Chino URC. It was here that Megan and Brian met for the first time. Little did they know, they were meeting the person who would later become the love of their lives.

Over the next couple of months, their attraction grew, as the small campus allowed them to get to know each other.  Sparks couldn’t help but fly – every time their eyes met, it was magnetic.  It couldn’t be denied and finally one beautiful night in the month of October, while strolling on the picturesque Laguna Beach, the manly dairy farmer turned to the red headed horse-lover and asked if she would be his girlfriend. Oh Cows!  Need you even ask?  It was the beginning of a wonderful romance.

Slowly, Brian began shedding his HUGE tough boy persona, wooing the girl of his dreams.  How could the dairy farmer secure the red-haired girl from Washington?  Much to the surprise of their friends, stealing her phone, keys, or pillow and racing around campus seemed to do the trick.  Just to be sure, though, sometimes Brian would call up his sweetheart randomly, tell her to meet him outside at his car and hand her pink and green flowers…just because it was Wednesday. Moments like this put the twinkle in their eyes.

The next months were filled with strolls to Starbucks, in which Megan consumed unearthly amounts of caffeine, yet could not manage to stay awake, day trips to San Diego, where, following the traditions of their ancestors, they biked around town, and a rigorous routine of jogging as a couple…*SARCASM SIGN*
By this time, they were desperately in love, but faced some tough realities, like being separated by thousands of miles, when Meg moved back to Washington, and only being able to communicate over that blessed gadget known as a cell phone.  They faced an even tougher reality when they got their cell phone bills.  But to keep his mind off of his distant red-headed sweetheart, he milked many a cow and cried bitter tears into the piles of…manure.  Meanwhile, far up north, Megan spent her lonesome days consoled by the presence of her darling niece Sydni and working long hours surrounded by the (other) subject of her dreams: coffee.

The long days passed slowly, but they did pass, and joyful reunions came and went.  Finally, it was November – that cold month of Thanksgiving.  And for Megan and Brian, it was sure to be a month of Thanksgiving.  Tuesday night, Brian boarded a plane, full of confidence and anticipation, knowing the next day would be a complete surprise to Miss Megan Hemnes.  Early Wednesday morning, Megan and Brian headed to one of their favorite places – Deception Pass, a beautiful and romantic setting.  After enjoying the scenery, and taking memorable pictures, Brian began OPERATION PROPOSAL.

Before Megan knew it, the song My Best Friend, by Tim McGraw, was playing on Brian’s phone and he was down on one knee, asking the question a girl waits her entire life to hear: Will you spend the rest of your life with me?  Gently, the very carefully chosen ring was slid onto Meg’s left hand and they were betrothed.

Throughout the next nine months, the wedding day Megan had dreamed of since the age of seven was planned and organized.  In the midst of the wedding flurries, they were reminded that the real reason the momentous day of August 14, 2009 would forever be ingrained into their memories was because they would be joined in love to each other for the rest of their coffee-drinking, businesses dealing days.  And so it has come to pass.  They have met, they have loved, they have been betrothed, and now they are married.  Forever and ever.  Happily ever after.
The End.

Brian and Megan Vanden Heuvel have been married for a little over a year now and currently live in Vancouver, WA.  

Wedding pictures taken by The Snap Sisters.  Check them out...they're amazing!
Also check out Meg's Blog!

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Color The Skies

This year I attended the 5th Annual Color The Skies event in Ripon.  Color the Skies is a hot air balloon festival that raises money for Children’s Hospital of Central California.  It's held on Labor Day every year.  Last year I actually worked at the festival. [Best Buy is one of the sponsors]  It was the first time that I had the opportunity to go.  Every other year, I was either busy or away at school.  Since I didn’t have to work this year, my dad and I decided to go.  
All of the day’s festivities started at 6am with a pancake breakfast sponsored by Savemart.  I am a big fan of a yummo pancake breakfast.  However, due to the lack of taste in this food and the price, my dad and I decided to pass.  That morning my dad and I set forth on our early morning trek towards Mistlin Sports Park.  We stopped a few of the booths, including the Best Buy booth with a bunch of my coworkers.  After that we headed over to watch the balloons lift off.  It was a wonderful time to take out my camera and experiment with the different settings.

Monday, September 13, 2010

"Hear You Me"

Lately there have been days that I wake up just wishing that things were different. It is so easy to be negative and think about all the things in life that could have, should have, and would have. I was lying in bed the other night watching an old TV show and Jimmy Eat World was on the episode. I am not a diehard fan of theirs, but I enjoy their music. Towards the end of the episode, they start to sing “Hear You Me” (in my opinion, one of their best songs). Although I love this song, every time I hear it, I tear up and think of Danielle

Danielle was a friend that passed away right before my junior year of high school. I met her at the wonderfully amazing Redwood Christian Park aka RCP. I went to RCP for seven summers in a row and loved every minute of it. RCP was always the highlight of every summer. The summer before my sophomore year, I was in wonderful cabin with eight wonderful girls. Danielle was one of them. Most of the girls in our cabin knew each other from past summers at camp, but Danielle was there for her first time. I still remember that when there would be a counselor meeting at night Danielle would call her mom in our cabin just to let her know that she was doing okay. Over that week I became good friends with Danielle and Brianna (Danielle’s friend, who also was in our cabin).

Danielle is the girl sitting next to me!  Sorry for the poor picture quality...this was back in the day of disposable cameras!
This is the infamous Eskimo Jesus at RCP.

As usual after a wonderful week at camp, I went back home and started back up with my routine. My sophomore year flew by and I really enjoyed keeping in touch with all of my camp friends throughout the year. That summer rolled around and on June 18, 2005, 16 year old Danielle was driving her 1994 Volvo through an intersection when a mini van collided with the Volvo. Danielle died on the scene of the crash. I can remember the events of that day like it was yesterday. The funeral for Danielle was held on June 23, 2005, my 16th birthday. I couldn’t believe how packed that church was. Not only were all the seats taken, but the side aisles were filled with people standing and people surrounded the outside of the church to pay their respects. At the end of the funeral, they played the song “Hear You Me.” I have included a video with the lyrics of this song. It’s beautiful. Danielle will always hold a special place in my heart. I cannot wait for the day that we are both in the presence of our Savior.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Psalm 130

Out of the depths I cry to you, O LORD;

O Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
to my cry for mercy.

If you, O LORD, kept a record of sins,
O Lord, who could stand?

But with you there is forgiveness;
therefore you are feared.

I wait for the LORD, my soul waits,
and in his word I put my hope.

My soul waits for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning.

O Israel, put your hope in the LORD,
for with the LORD is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption.

He himself will redeem Israel
from all their sins.


I have blogged in the past, but haven’t in quite some time so I decided to start a new blog for this stage of my life. I don’t plan to hold anything back on how I am struggling. Life has been quite a struggle for a while now and I know that others can benefit from hearing how others are coping with everyday situations. I, like everyone, has a fair share of struggles.

My current struggle is not knowing where my life is headed. I feel so stuck all the time. Most of it is my fault, and I realize that. When I graduated from high school I was so excited to go away to college and become an elementary teacher. I focused on that for a couple years and then was faced with new challenges and have now come to realize that I am not meant to be a teacher. The only problem is that I have no idea what I am meant to be. I pray every day that I will be able to figure out which direction I need to go.

The only thing that I really have a passion for is photography. Ever since exploring this new world, I have looked at everything with a new perspective. I see everything through a lens. “To me, photography is an art of observation. It's about finding something interesting in an ordinary place...I've found it has little to do with the things you see and everything to do with the way you see them.” Elliot Erwitt