Monday, February 23, 2009

find your differences and embrace them

“We are all a little weird and life's a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”

that quote just made me giggle this i thought i'd share. :)

I don't have much time to write as I have a TON of homework to get done today. But I just thought I'd do a quick recap of my week. It really wasn't too eventful as I was stuck in bed for 2 straight days and the next few days after that I didn't do much of anything as I still was pretty sick. I'm still fighting whatever this bug is...but at least it's sort of settled as just a head cold which i can deal with!

I got to work another shift in the coffee shop which was a blast other than feeling rather sick about halfway through my shift and wishing i could just crawl back into bed for another day or two.

Other than that...we had a sweet sweet dance party randomly in our kitchen saturday night. i'm not sure how we even squeezed so many people in that teeny kitchen let alone had room to dance but we did and it was AMAZING. my flatmates are pretty rad that's for sure! sorry to everyone in the neighborhood we kept up so late..haha

And sunday after church Matt, Aaron, Shane and Hannah came for a visit and it was oh so good. we wandered the streets of york, went to look at the minster, and then hung out in the cutest little pub ever and talked for hours about anything and everything. It was good fun and was sweet to have some of my friends from Warrington meet some of my bible college friends and roommates. So that was definitely the highlight of my week.

And here I am...Monday afternoon...thinking goodness i have a LOT of homework to do...i maybe be one of the best procrastinators out there. haha. Goodmorning washington, and goodafternoon england. I best scoot! <3

Thursday, February 19, 2009

So, I've been sick and stuck in bed for two days straight now...i figure by like 8:30 tonight I will have slept about 38 of the past 48 hours...yeah, that's a lot of sleep! especially for me! It's been no fun really, i've missed two days of classes which i now have to make up for, and i'm going stir crazy just laying in bed all the time. But luckily i think all this sleep has been paying off as i'm slowly but surely feeling a bit better and laughing a bit more.

what a blessing though! our internet in the flat seems to be sort of working again! it's not always reliable...and when to many people get on it's really really slow...BUT...even the possibility of being able to connect from our flat is nice.

Other than being sick, not much is new here. I get to work in the coffee shop for my M1 which is such a blessing. I'm so excited to really learn about the art and history of coffee which is something i've wanted to learn more about for a long time and just haven't really had anyone to teach me. so i'm really quite excited for this opportunity to work with people who really care about the quality of their out tri cities..i'm coming home pickier than ever about my coffee!

anyway, since i've not uploaded one are my lovely roommates!

oh how i love these girls! :)

Saturday, February 14, 2009


yesterday was such a good day. i got up, went to morning devotionals. and the boys suprised all us girls with roses. which was so sweet of them!

then i got to go work my first shift at the coffee shop here. i've missed working with coffee soo soo much! I'm so excited to be back at it and learning more about the art and history of coffee. it's nice to work in a place that truly cares about the quality of the coffee they serve!

after that i played a little ping pong with my poor sick roommate. and got an email with the most exciting news. my brother is engaged! how awesome is that! seriously, it's such a blessing! his fiance is amazing and i can't wait for her to be my sister-in-law :D

also, friday and saturday nights are open flat nights so the guys are girls are allowed in the first floor kitchen/livingroom areas in the flats. it's the only time we're allowed to go into eachothers flats so it's nice to just hang out with eachother. flat 9 (my flat) was definitely the place to be last night. we had some seriously sweet music going on...rach was on her guitar and lydia on her violing and eventually they let me join in with the harmonica..yeah, that's right...i was playing the harmonica! haha. it was sweet and more and more people kept venturing over and eventually we were just having a sweet worship session. seriously, what an amazing way to spend a friday night!

all of this was of course followed by ridiculous amounts of laughter in my room before bed.


"two things...your leaves are purple...and they are green."

<3 I LOVE my flat! and especially my room :D

Friday, February 6, 2009

February 6

so...i had my first visitor today! :)

Aaron caught the train over from uni to visit for the afternoon. we spend all morning walking around york so he could show me all his favorite places and shops. it was nice to have someone who sort of knew their way around with me for once. and boy was it nice to see a familiar face! we walked for hours, and stopped for tea, and later for coffee. any excuse to sit inside and warm up for a bit! but we also took a walk down by the river which was nice as i hadn't been down there yet and it is quite pretty. to be honest, all of york is quite seems no matter what street you turn down there is an old church just around every corner that just takes your breath away. after having our fill of walking circles around town we went to check out York Minster. We went in and took a walk through the minster just being blown away by it's size and the amazing detail in the carvings, windows, walls...just everything was absolutely breathtaking. And it was all made for Jesus which is just awesome.

we took the tower tour and climbed up a billion teeny little steps on this skinny spiral staircase to get up to the tip top of the minster...

first stop was the rooftop rail walk...then more stairs that just seemed to get steeper and scarier as we went up. it's a miracle neither of us fell up or down those stairs!

it was a lovely day indeed. i got to explore new bits of York, found the way to the train station, and finally a place with a good internet connection...Borders. haha. yay! :)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


I think I’m officially an English person….I successfully even write the date like they do without even thinking of it. I’m gonna be one confused monkey when I get home! Haha. Okay so I suppose that really doesn’t make me an English person at all….

I just finished my second day of classes, and let me just say it is gonna be a lot of work this semester, but I’m so excited for all I’m going to learn! My classes are great. Tuesday and Thursdays I have Romans and intro. to biblical Hebrew (yikes! Learning Hebrew looks like it’s gonna be tough already..but I’m determined to do it!) Hermeneutics and Apologetics. I have 2 teachers, each teaching two of my classes. It’s a neat little campus here..only about 40 students and one of my classes only has 5 people in it. I have a feeling by the end of the semester we’ll all be one big family.

I’m slowly but surely finding my way around this new city. I haven’t been lost again since that first episode..but I also haven’t freely wandered the way I did that day. I’ve been pretty careful about how far I go and remember (or at least trying to remember) my way back!

I’m definitely falling in love with york. It’s absolutely freezing, but so beautiful! Okay, that was quick I know..but they’re closing the coffee shop early so I’m getting kicked outta here and off the internet!

Miss you all, but I’m definitely loving it here!
Thanks for prayers and such.

OH! and….mail…please send me love letters ☺ it’s so nice to hear from home!

Julie Arthurs
9 Barbican Road
YO10 5AA

Tuesday Feb 3

So we had our orientation today. It was really nice to finally sit down and get some direction and find out what my schedule will be like. Looks like I’ll have Fridays off except for devotionals from 8:30-9 in the morning. We have no classes Mondays but sometimes they plan activities for those days. So I’ll have most of my Friday, Saturdays, and most Mondays to myself to venture around. We have a course which gives us credit for working around the church whether it’s child care, landscape/maintenance stuff, or the one I’m crossing my fingers I get, working in the coffee shop the church runs. Let me tell you this is the most amazing coffee shop. Its built in on of the gate towers of the roman walls surrounding the building…and it’s beyond cute! There is a little teeny wooden door in the stone wall I have to duck to get through, and it’s a little two story café. Downstairs some seats and the espresso, upstairs a library of Christian books, more seating and some nice couches and such. I think I would live here at the Walmgate Bar if I could!

the outside of walmgate our little coffee shop:

the cute little door:

We had a BBQ today at orientation and it was nice to have some real all American food. The pastor was out cooking in the snow, it was quite a sight! Some of the biggest snow flakes I’ve ever seen were coming down from the sky that’s for sure!

I think I’m going to learn to love York. It is so pretty. And I’ve met some pretty cool people. I’m not really close to anyone in particular, but I’ve had a few good conversations with a few people. Of course I wish I had more of an opportunity to meet the guys here, when I have had an opportunity to sit and chat with them I’ve really enjoyed their company. I’m just not used to being around girls so much! It’s hard being in separate flats but I know they’ve planning some open flat nights where they open up a living area of one of the flats for guys and girls to go hang. And now that I’ve made my way over to the coffee shop I’m sure I’ll bump into a few of the here at one point or another! So hopefully

Monday, February 2, 2009

York Adventure #1

2-1-09 (or 1-2-09 for all you english folk)

So, here I am at the end of my first Sunday here at Calvary Chapel York. Church this morning was interesting. It is sooo much smaller here than my church in the tri. I wanna say there were maybe 90 people or so at the service. And there is only one service a week as opposed to our 4 plus the additional Spanish service at home. The fellowship hall is just out the pack patio of our flat so it’s nice to just walk out your back door and be at church. And goodness it’s beautiful inside! I miss hearing steve speak. Hopefully this new pastor will grow on me…a few of the other girls mentioned they missed their pastors as well and are used to a faster paced, more upbeat, and in my case, more humor in the sermons. But we’ll see. It is just always weird trying out a new church…and not something I do very often. I can’t say I’ve been to more than 2 churches in the past 10 years or so.

So, a quick update on the people. I finally met some of the students in other flats. Apparently I was lucky enough to get stuck in the fullest flat. The boys have a flat the same size and have 5 less people in it so at least one less person per room. And the other girls are in smaller flats with far less girls. I think that would have been more up my ally…but like I mentioned in the last post I’m sure God put me in this place for a reason…he knows how stubborn I am and that in a house of 16 girls I would still find a way to stick to myself if I could! Anyway, we all went out for lunch after church and that was fun. There are a couple girls in the other flat I really enjoyed chatting with.

After lunch I decided to steal my first bit of alone time since I’d got here and went to explore town a bit. So, I did a little shopping…it is soo cold here and I needed another long sleeve shirt to wear under things. But mostly I just walked up and down the little streets looking at all the cute little shops. York is absolutely beautiful. So many old castle like buildings, a roman wall that used to run all the way around the city is still mostly there around the center of town so I walked on the wall part of the way, and walked by the city art museum and Yorkminster the biggest, most beautiful church I’ve ever seen! Did I mention how cold it is here?! Let’s just say, it’s rather windy, and it was dusting snow all morning and as the day went on the flakes just got bigger and bigger.

About 2 ½ hours into my excursion I figured it was probably a good idea to try to find my way back to the flat as I was getting way to cold. But, if you know me…you know how AWFUL my directional skills are. Of course, I was completely lost. I should also mention all I know about where I live is it’s a flat that looks like almost every other flat in york…but my flat is next to a Cantonese restaurant and the church office…so if you find the building with the Calvary Chapel sign you’ve found it…haha…not much help! I ended up on what must have been the complete opposite end of town. And kept finding my way down streets that looked promising but turned into sketchy little alley ways or quiet residential streets and I really didn’t feel comfortable walking by myself, so I was constantly trying to walk right behind a group of people when possible…and hurried my way back to the town center right away, I was about to give up and just find a taxi and pay for them to drive me back because it was starting to get dark and I was starting to worry about being out alone.

By this point I had been wandering the streets of york for probably a good hour and a half or more before finally remembering I had a map they gave us when we got here. Of course…I’m no good with maps either so I wasn’t sure that was going to be any help…After another half hour or so of walking I was finally back on the right end of town and was slowly but surely making my way back. By this point I was absolutely frozen and the snow was falling down in huge flakes and the wind was blowing harder than ever. And of course it seemed no matter what street I walked down I was walking into the wind so even hiding under my hood didn’t protect me from the frigid air.
And slowly but surely I found my way back to familiar territory. I’ve never been so happy to see a red door with the number 9 on it.

My face and hands were redder than red and my coat and jeans soaked from the snow melting on me as I walked up a sweat on the way home…so I was ready for a good cup of tea and climbed in to bed to warm up for a bit. It’s been a nice quiet night…I think most of the girls are in the other flat hanging out, but I’m exhausted, and needed a good chance to sit and write and draw for a bit. I’m not sure how much time I’ll have this week to myself so I’m taking advantage of it now!

I honestly have no clue what time or where I have to be tomorrow…I think we have an orientation of some sort, but no one has given me any information about it…hopefully someone in my room has a clue!

Things are pretty strict here…and I haven’t even been given the rules yet! I’ve just heard bits and pieces of what we can and can’t do from people…so I’m looking forward to getting the real rules so I don’t have to keep guessing at things.

Okay, well I’m sure I’ve bored you all enough by now! I’m sure I’ll have some good stories to share tomorrow as well after my first day of college…I don’t know that we actually have any classes yet, but I should at least find out what my schedule will be like for the semester.

York Feb 2 2009

So..we have a rather crappy internet connection at the college. So far I’ve only been able to get on once since I’ve been here, and I’ve been told they turn the internet off at 10 pm…so, I’m going to continue to write and just post updates whenever I get lucky enough to get online…hopefully I’ll find a good café somewhere with free internet..but it might take me a while to do so.

It’s weird being in a place with so many people…literally we have a small common room with an old pink couch and matching chairs, a small dining room, and a small, but fairly decent kitchen. We all get one cupboard and there are about 5 girls per fridge. Needless to say, the space filled up fast! The next two floors of the flat are the bedrooms, 2 rooms per floor, 4 girls per room, and one bathroom per floor. So there are a grand total of 16 girls in my flat. Far too many if you ask me! Infact we are the fullest dorm at the moment I think. The guys next door have 11 in a flat the same size, and I think they may be expecting 1 more person this week at some point…but that is one less person per room which I’m sure makes a huge difference in storage space! There are also a few smaller flats with fewer girls…I’m not sure how they got so lucky. I would have rathered be in a small flat with 4 or 5 girls than this one…but oh well!

I think from what I heard there are about 40 students here this semester. So I’m sure I’ll get to know everyone eventually…I’ve yet to meet even half the girls in my flat though. And I’ve already forgotten nearly all their names…but I’m working on it. I think I’ve atleast got down the girls in my room.

I was absolutely overwhelmed today. We showed up and the girls (Alison and Clare) who came with from warrington helped me carry my bags in…the boys weren’t allowed in the flat at all so we couldn’t put them to work. And right away I had to try to unpack everything I brought. I got stuck with the bottom drawers and shelves…which is kind of lame since I’m definitely the tallest in my room, but I did end up with a larger drawer which gives me a little more space so I guess it’s not soo bad. The bunks are small, I just perfectly fit in it lengthwise, the mattresses are old and not too comfortable and the pillows are not much of a pillow at all. Sure makes you miss your own bed!!

After I somehow managed to shove all my stuff into my drawers I went to the grocery store with matt and his friends to pick up some food for the week. I took advantage of the fact that I actually had a ride and didn’t have to walk everything home and did a fairly big shopping. It’s hard though…everything is a different brand here, and things have different names, and many things we have at home they don’t have at all here. For example…I figured pasta would be something quick and easy for me to I grabbed some fettucini noodles and some chicken and went to go look for alfredo sauce…apparently that doesn’t exist here…so I settled on another white sauce and I’ll give it a try sometime this week. After shoping we went and had one last meal together before they dropped me off at the flat and went back to warrington. It was nice to have them there to help me get a little settled…but it was certainly hard for me to see them go…

After they left I went upstairs to try to begin organizing my stuff a little better (at this point it was all just sort of shoved in drawers to get it out of my suitcase…I hadn’t thought much about keeping things organized once they were out of my suitcase, luckily I’d brought one box with me…and when we went shopping for food I found a couple plastic baskets for a pound or so so that helped!) and met the 4th girl in my room who had just arrived…honestly that was probably the hardest bit of my trip. All I wanted to do was climb into bed and cry myself to sleep but not in a room full of strangers. I miss my own space already. It’s quite a shock after always living at home and having loads of space and privacy and comfort of familiar things. Being tossed in a room of not just one extra, but 3 extra people, and about as much space as I have in my own room at home was just a tad bit overwhelming! Thankfully I had finally got around to putting some credit on the pay as you go phone matt had given me so I was able to text him a bit and a few others to help settle my nerves.

As for my roommates, first we have Tracie. She seems nice, a bit reserved like me I think. She transferred over from the California campus and seems to have a great heart and a pretty swell relationship with the Lord. I’m not sure how much her and I really have in common…who knows, maybe we wil end up having loads to talk about.

Alexa seems nice, this is her 2nd semester at the college so she’s more familiar with things. She seems really outgoing and like a really sweet girl. Hopefully she’ll show us the ropes since she’s the only one in our room who has been here before!

And then there’s Rachel who I think I will probably get along with best. She seems to have at least closer taste in music as me…and seems like she likes to have a good time, but I saw her sneak up to her bunk to write so I think she also enjoys her personal time. She just seems like a girl who just wants to see everything and make the most of life. So she should be fun to be around.

Yikes though, I really hope this bible college ends up being something I enjoy. It sounds like it’s pretty intense and I just hope it doesn’t all overwhelm me too much. I guess intense is maybe good…as it will seriously force me to be closer to God and grow in ways I would never grow on my own. I just am really not so sure this is what’s right for me. Unfortunately it’s a little late for that…I’m stuck til the 17th of may….yes, I’m already counting. Haha. 15 weeks of consecutive school starting Monday…hope I’m ready for this! It certainly is going to force me to work on my patience, and learn to open up to people…I have a feeling I’m going to be forced to share a lot more of myself with these people than I’d really like to. But I suppose those are two great reasons why God may have wanted me here…I know he has something big planned or he wouldn’t have called me across the world.

Goodness…well, it’s getting late, and I didn’t sleep much at all last night so I should really get to sleep as I need to wake up for church in the morning. But have I mentioned how much I miss home?! I just want to get home to my parents, my dogs, my best friend, and a silly boy : )