25 Days of Christmas (Day 12)

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(Day 12) Samantha Bendernagel

“Warning to all believers.  Stop, do not read.

My family moved when I was in fourth grade and then I was worried that Santa wouldn’t know my address and think the other kids were me and I couldn’t have that.  So I wrote him a letter in July so he would know, [saying]

‘Dear Santa this is Samantha J Bendernagel, I used to live at, my old address but now I just moved here.  I don’t want you to forget about me.  Sorry for the extra trip, but I can make it worth your while.  Do you like chocolate chip cookies?  Do you like regular milk or chocolate milk?’

So my parents were cracking up about this and thought it would be funny to write back.  They wrote me this letter and I’m in school the next day saying ‘Santa Claus wrote me back’.  My mom made the candy cane outline, it was the real deal.  Yeah, so I was so pumped about it.  And a lot of kids were trying to say ‘He’s not real’ and I was like ‘But he didn’t write you a letter though’.

Christmas eve that year I got the cookies and milk he wanted.  Every Christmas eve I would go to bed and my parents and my sister would help put up the tree.  But then I realized I forgot to give Santa milk. I go downstairs and see my parents put presents underneath the tree.  I’m at the top and I went back to my room and cried myself to sleep.

I woke the next day and was like, ‘LIARS!’, needless to say, I was not happy.”

Day 30: a picture of yourself this day and 5 good things that happened since you started the challenge

I literally just took this picture in the middle of the tutoring center at my college.  I tried to act like a ninja when I was taking it- did it work?  I find it so crazy that 30 days have already gone by, I feel like I started this challenge yesterday and now I’m done.  I think it feels a little bitter sweet to be typing up my last post.  On one hand I’m happy that I don’t have to blog everyday, but on the other hand, I don’t have to blog everyday!  And I feel like being forced to blog helped me in a million different ways.  Now unto 5 good things that happened to me since I started this 30 day challenge.

1.  InterVarsity used one of my blog posts.

I wrote about InterVarsity and strangely enough, InterVarsity found my blog and not only asked to use it, but have me write for them this summer.  I’ve only written one other post for them so far but I find this such an incredibly humbling experience.  And I’m so grateful to be used by God in this capacity.  I never considered myself a writer, but I did believe I had something interesting to say.  And the amazing thing about God is that he calls you just to be called, he’ll qualify you and do the rest.

2. I turned nineteen

I know that sounds stupid, but not a lot of people can say they lived to be nineteen years old.  So many people die young or tragically and I was blessed to live yet another year of my life.  I’m thankful for that.

3.  I had the most productive summer of my life

I’m not even halfway through but regardless of whether of not I pass this seemingly impossible math class, I’ve learned and done so much this summer.  Most times during the summer I bum around each day and do nothing but right now I can’t remember a time I’ve worked harder really.  And the the thing is I don’t even do that much, which speaks to my work ethic.  Or lack there of.  But I’m learning that it’s okay to take breaks sometimes.  As well as the fact that one cannot be working all day long.  I think its ingrained in our brains that something is wrong if we’re not always working.  That we’re procrastinating and wasting our precious lives away!  But most people procrastinate.  Maybe we should stop spending so much time complaining about doing nothing and just work hard whenever we do work.

4. I stopped caring a little more.

Again this sounds so counter intuitive, but not caring about the small stuff really changed my outlook on life.  I stopped letting myself engage in petty drama that’s around me.  I stopped caring about whether or not I was coming off a certain way.  And in turn I started caring about just being a good person and relying less on these superficial things like the name of the brands that I wear.  Learning to let go and not care is revealing and ultimately releasing.

5.  I’m going on a mission trip to Guyana.

I think normally I would have been too afraid of being unqualified to go.  But I’m going because I feel like God has called me to do this!  I plan on blogging about experiences when I get the chance, so check back if you want to hear from me.

Day 28: Something that stresses you out

I find the timing of this post really funny, I have just a week before my math final and it is STRESSING ME OUT!  I think that all finals in general stress me out, but more so its the anticipation and fear.  Really that’s what anything in life really comes down to, fear.

I’m afraid of going for my final and realizing I know nothing.  I’m afraid of finding out whether or not I failed.  And waiting on these things turns me green with anticipation and STRESS!  Oh the stress.

The thing is, fear is crippling.  Fear can hold us back in so many different ways.  When I think back on this week, I’ve turned down at least 4 people I really wanted to spend time with because even if I procrastinate, I feel guilty having fun the week before my final.

It’s really stupid because I end up doing nothing all day anyway.  I just don’t want to allow myself the enjoyment of the company of my friends.

I remember going for my last math final and being so stressed out right before.  The final ended up being CRAZY easy and I passed with flying colors.  But right before I felt like I was going to puke.  All this anticipation was leading up to this one moment and when this moment came I didn’t really know what to do.

Because getting my final wasn’t really an awe inspiring moment.  I got my test, started and finished it like I would any other test.  Only difference was I actually really knew my stuff this time around.

It stresses me out that blackboard isn’t showing my final exam prep videos and that less and less time is there for me to study.  But it’s not until this stress really motivates me that I actually stop messing around and focus.  So I guess in many ways stress can be a really great thing.  It’s an amazing motivator for so many different reasons.

Day 26: Your Dream Wedding

I think most guys have heard that girls plan their wedding day from as far back as they have enough cognitive reasoning to think.  I’m not one of those girls.  So many times I’ve been tempted to let my mind imagine and delve into all the wonderful possibilities.  But I stop myself because I know that a wedding is just one day.  And that the marriage that comes from it is far more important.

However, there are some things I need in order to have my dream wedding, hopefully my demands aren’t crazy.

1.  God fearing man

I find it so funny how some girls will go on for hours about the location, colors and ambiance of their wedding and forget to marry someone good!  I remember telling one of my friends that I just wanted to marry someone completely in love with God.  She looked at me kinda weird and said that I should be careful of those guys, they may be a little crazy. But the way I see it, God is the center of my life.  He is my moral compass and my everything.  So why not marry someone who loves God as I do?

2.  Simplicity

I’ve always loved the colors red and white because it looks so classy and simple.  I wish I could have a small wedding but I have way to many relatives to ever wish to do that.  But I can keep things simple.

3.  Lace wedding dress

I don’t know what is about lace.  It just looks so refined and so classy.  I would of course need a sari too, but maybe a lace dress for the actual wedding itself would be nice.  And white looks really nice against my burnt chocolate complexion.

4.  People I love

I want to be around people who actually care about me and my well being.  People who smile and pictures and are actually really happy.  People I’m happy to spend my day with.  I promised my aunt I’d get married in India if she couldn’t come to America.  I want her there.

5. Prayers

I want to start off my married life draped in blessings!  Is that a little selfish?

 

Nina

Day 25: Put your iPod on shuffle, first 10 songs

I almost forgot to blog today!  :O

Below are the first 10 songs when my ipod is put on shuffle, keep in mind that my friend put all my songs on my ipod so I don’t even know them all!

1.  Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites

2.  Dynamite

3.  Seal it with a kiss

4.  Earthquake

5.  Love Again

6.  Save me

7.  All Alone

8.  How to love

9.  We run this night

10.  Dont wanna go home

Day 24: Something you’ve learned

Something that I’ve learned over the course of the past 24 days, or more so my life, is that you can never make some one love you.  And I don’t just mean this romantically.  All relationships, be it between family members, friends or romantically require the cooperation of two separate entities.  And because of that you can never make someone love you.

Trust me, I’ve tried.

It reminds me of the idea that I can meet someone for the first time and know within seconds that we’ll be best friends.  But then I’ll know someone my entire life and never really feel close to them.  Yes, I’m the type of person to make annoying small talk.  I do it to be polite, even if it’s excruciatingly boring.

Basically, it comes down to this idea that you can really be friends with absolutely anyone.  You’d be surprised by how much you can have in common with a stranger.  You can talk for hours on end about your favorite television show or a good book, but they need to want to talk to you.  And you can love someone to the moon and back, but they need to want to love you.

They need to be excited to see you and take time to show you that you matter.  Otherwise, why are you even wasting your time on someone who doesn’t care for you.  I have this stupid rule in friendships.  I’ll be the first person to initiate a conversation, almost always, but if you don’t respond don’t expect me to try again.  It may be harsh but its a rule I’ve followed and a rule that he done me well for a good while now.  Because if someone wants to talk to you, they will respond.  And if someone cares about your friendship, they shouldn’t ignore you.

I’ve always found the idea of a guy chasing after a girl with little interest in him sickening.  This may be the influence of Korean dramas in my life this past summer but it just looks pathetic to me.  You’re painted this picture that a guy who comes close to stalking a girl is the model of true love.  It’s not.  It’s the model of being a stalker and needed a restraining order soon.

And maybe once in a while pining after someone you don’t know works.  But how much do you really want someone who never really loved you in the first place?  And who made you work for their admiration?

People make time for the people they love in their life.  Stop wasting your time on people who don’t make time for you.

Day 23: Favorite Movie

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I have a feeling that whoever made this 30 day Challenge got lazy seeing as how they repeated a day.  But none the less, I’m excited to tell you AGAIN about my favorite movie, and maybe convince you to watch it if you haven’t already.

There are very few moments that change my life and seldom movies, but this movie changed my life.  It taught me so much about pursuing my passions and that which is important to me.  It may have added to my unrelenting love of Amir Khan as well!

This movie was so wonderfully crafted and even a little bit elegant in its plot design and structure.  And seeing as how I love bollywood movies, I ate up every second of this one.

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Life is too short to let the opinions of other dictate what you want to do.  And this movie taught me that a million different ways.  It’s funny,charming and a feel good movie that never loses its class.

Day 21: Favorite Picture of yourself ALL TIME Why?

I love this picture so much and for so many different reasons.  One because it’s a picture of me and my brother.  Trying to get a picture with my brother can sometimes feel like THE hardest thing to do in the entire world.  But he took this with me.

I also love the fact that I was drenched right before this picture and was walking around in wet clothes dried by the sun.  I straightened my hair but went down a  water slide and I thought that my hair would be super frizzy and disgusting in this picture.  I was certain that I looked horrible that day.  But I got this picture emailed to me and I loved it.

I love that my hair is straight and then rolls into curls.  I love the fact that I’m smiling with my teeth.  I love that my brother and I look like we’re at the premiere for a Veggie tales movie and that even the back decorations look epic.  Even that my brother is looking up and that I’m looking straight at the lens.  I love it all.  Even the filter added to it.  And every single time I look at this picture I smile.