We have come to that point in the semester. Finals are right around the corner. This also means that my first semester of seminary is almost over with. Seems like I just started last week. Weird how fast time flies. All in all, it's been a pretty great semester and has only affirmed that I'm in the right place in my life. Hard to believe that in just a few more days, it will all be over and I will be on a plane back to Texas (again) for a few weeks of rest and relaxation before I head back to start classes again.
This next part might sound odd to some of you but I have always loved finals week!! In undergrad, it was one of my absolute favorite things and I always looked forward to it every semester. Here, it's no different. I just really enjoy having a lot to do and spending all day studying and cramming as much knowledge into my head as possible. Plus, the fact that all you have to do in class is take a test. There's no actual learning that goes on that week and it's just a really chill and fun time of studying and paper writing etc. I know I sound so weird for admitting that I like finals week. Did I mention I'm a Type A? That could have something to do with my love for it. In undergrad, my system was usually take a final in the morning, then reward myself by watching a movie when I got home and then start studying again for another final or writing a paper etc. I think I might try and implement that system once again here. We'll see how that goes. I have gotten ridiculously behind on my movie watching so finals week could be a great excuse to catch up on some I've missed.
In other non-finals related news, the seminary choir had their annual Lessons and Carols service this past weekend and it went really well. We sounded really good and got lots of compliments. I even had one of my friends from Oakland come and see it and spend the night at my house and it was so great to see him and catch up some. I really needed that time to catch up and connect with a non-seminary related person. It's so rare that I get those moments so when I do, I treasure them. It's important to maintain relationships with people who knew you prior to going to seminary. It's important to have people that you can talk about non-seminary related stuff with. It can sometimes feel like all I talk about these days is theology and Old Testament studies and schoolwork and while I do sincerely love that stuff, it's good to every once in a while talk about something not related to this world. It's important to remember that I have outside interests. Seminary can often feel like a bubble and every once in a while, it's important to make sure that bubble gets popped. While I absolutely love my classmates and my studies, I need to make sure to re-orient myself occasionally with people who are not classmates.
To that end, it was so great to get to spend Thanksgiving with my extended family. I was definitely nervous as I walked to their front door because I wasn't sure what kind of reception I would receive. After all, this is family I hadn't seen in over ten years and a lot has changed in that time. My reservations disappeared as soon as I walked in the door. I was greeted with hugs and well-wishes from the moment I walked in the door and that feeling lasted the entire time I was there. I am so glad I got to re-connect with them and I ended up staying the night at my cousin's and having breakfast with my uncle, a man who I have long admired and looked up to. So much food and fellowship and fun. Playing in the annual Ping-Pong Tournament, meeting my 17 and 13 year old cousins that I had never met before and being shocked at how old they're getting, petting the cutest little 4 month old kitten I have ever seen. Yeah, it was definitely a holiday to remember and definitely one of the best Thanksgivings I've ever had. I'm only two hours away so am gonna try and see them more than just at Thanksgiving. After all, its been ten years so gotta maximize my chances to see them when I can!!
I'm gonna close this off now and head to bed. I have got a very long week ahead of me. I've gotten behind on Final preps in a couple of my classes so will need to spend this week focusing on catching up so I will be prepared for the finals next week. Otherwise, Finals week won't be fun for me and that would be a real tragedy!!
PS: I'll be back in Texas starting December 16th so if you want to see me or otherwise know I exist, drop me a line and I will pencil you into!! I get booked quickly (the perils of being a star) so let me know ASAP!!