Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Hold up, wait a minute

Time has FLOWN by.

It feels like I've been here for maybe a month, but I've been here in Sweden for about three. I leave in three days to head back to the States and I'm pretty excited about that because I get to see my family, Cory, and, of course, all of you guys!

I have been considering something, though, and I think it's good for you all to know before I actually get home. I really want to come back for winter school here and I applied for a visa and everything and praying for a way for money to come in. Well, the staff obviously knows that I've been trying to work out all the details, and they have offered me a scholarship for spring school if I come back for winter school. That means that I will just be in Sweden for free. I won't have to pay for tuition for that year, or anything besides personal expenses.

Before I actually got to Sweden, I never really prayed about it very much. But once I got here and started to experience God in a new way, I really started praying about it a lot. And seriously over the course of two days, we found a way to apply for a visa (long story), and I was offered that scholarship. So I think God may be opening some doors for me to come back. It's still not definite, but I wanted you to know.

We (the girls) pranked the guys last night. They ALL went out for pizza as an end-of-the-semester thing and we went and stole their sheets, pillows, and blankets. Each girl had one guy's stuff and we left them to go on a scavenger hunt in which they eventually found out which girl had their stuff and had to do what the card said before we would give it back to them. 95% of the guys said it was a good prank and did what the cards said, but then there was that last 5% that had really bad attitudes towards the whole thing. My philosophy is, if you can't take it, don't dish it out. This prank on them was revenge for the two pranks they pulled on us. They just need to put some M-A-N on their attitudes. Oh well, it was fun.

Everyone packed up their rooms today which was a weird feeling. We find out who our new roommates are tomorrow and then we're putting all of the stuff we're not taking with us in those rooms and staying one night with our new roommates. I'm pretty excited about that.

That's all for now.

peace, love, and coming home soon.

Monday, December 8, 2008

I'll Blog if Yule Blog

'Tis the season, as it's said. Well folks, it's that time of year again... the time when everything around you is red and green and you hear "Ho ho ho" everywhere you go. Unlike Thanksgiving, Sweden does celebrate Christmas (I hope you understand my humor) with lights and advent and Christmas trees, just like we do. All of this is making me very excited because I get to go home for Christmas in less than two weeks. Crazy, huh?

For the past month and a half-ish, we have been preparing for the big Julkonsert (Christmas concert) that is held at Alseda Kyrka (a really nice Lutheran church) and it's been happening every year for about 30 years. We spent many an hour practicing and preparing and tweaking for this thing, and it was well worth it. Megan, Jenn, Julia, and I got together and wrote our own arrangement for "O Come, O Come, Emmanuel." It started off traditional, and then the last three voices were more upbeat and jazzy. We each had a solo verse and had sick harmonies in the chorus. Also, a group of nineteen of us sang "Silent Night" in four different languages. There was a small group that made up "the band" and sounded freakin' fantastic. And then there was Tyler, Danny, Spencer, Colleen, Joanna, Steph, and myself that performed The Everything Skit for the 400-500 local Swedes, most of whom had never heard about Jesus. That was exhilarating. It was very emotional for all of us. Well, you guys have seen it. You know. I will be posting a video of it on my Facebook soon. (The picture was from the dress rehearsal, so not everyone is in their full costume.)

What's even cooler is there's a Christian TV channel here and on December 10, our entire Christmas concert will be on that channel. How awesome! More Swedes will be able to hear and see the love of our God. Uhh, exciting much?

Afterwards, we invited everyone back to Holsby for some fika and conversation. It was really neat to be able to speak with them afterwards. I was COMPLETELY exhausted at around 10pm, so I signed out of breakfast and slept in.

peace, love, and still catching up on sleep.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Walk, Jog, Run

So I have been working on some songs lately, but they're not quite finished yet (that's why they aren't up on my Myspace page). But I want you to be able to see the lyrics and let me know what you think about it so far. Here you go:

"Walk, Jog, Run"
By Kaeli Riccardi

Where do I go from here
Now that Your Name's in my ear?
I can't escape it
This hurling wave is
Pulling me on down
Why are you so near
When I have to give is fear?
I'm being so selfish
I feel so worthless as these
Screams fall from my mouth

I'm battling with myself

I run to You
Putting all my fears aside
Carry me through
Take away my pride
I want to see you clearly now
Even though I don't know how

How do I love You more
Than I love myself?
I'm feeling so nauseas
Not being so cautious
I feel like I might drown
Why did I walk away
Instead of fall on my knees and pray?
I'm tired and hungry
I need You to love me
Pick me up off the ground

It's turning me inside out

I run to You
Please take away my pain
Carry me through
'Cause I remembered Your Name
I'm beginning to see You clearly now
I'm starting to learn how

I ran to You
You held me in Your arms
Carried me through
Kept me from the Dark
I can see You clearly now
Praises escaping from my mouth
Nothing on earth can stop me now
Nothing on earth can stop me now

You found me bruised and broken
You saved me with words unspoken
I came to You
You pulled me through
You gave me
Everything I've ever needed (I'll hold)
On to
Be made anew
And see that
You will never leave me
You will never leave me
You will never leave me