Dragon Elbows

The transformation would begin at my elbows. Leathery, dry, and bumpy. It seems like the perfect place for magic to begin since elbows are so often forgotten. Magic begins on the edge of being. The thin pale skin of humans hardens to a thick bullet-proof scale. Scales iridescently creamy with jagged brown claws instead of human toes. In a multitude of blinks, humanness fades and wings fan out carrying me into the clouds where dragon eyes map a route filled...
Continue reading...

Why I Donate Blood

Temperature taken. Iron measured. Eligibility questions answered. I relax into my own blue, lounge chair lined up beside a few others, waiting to be asked which arm that I’d like to donate from. I volunteer my right arm, knowing that I have small veins and no one has ever been able to find a large enough vein in my left arm to donate. Arm swabbed and blood pressure cuff tight around my bicep. I bite the inside of my cheek...
Continue reading...

9 Favorite Outer Banks Things To Do

  As a rule, people love the beach. Sun, water, and sand. It’s a type of paradise where laying out in the sun and catnapping is acceptable. Personally, I love staying active on the beach, whether playing in the waves, building sandcastles, or trying some new trick. But sometimes I need new ideas for my beach days or some different scenery other than water and sand. Bring your phone and take selfies with as many beautiful people as you can....
Continue reading...

10 Things I learned from Living with Host Families

Throughout my years in college and then even following college, I found myself living with host families for times as short as a night to times as long as a year and a half. The hospitality of each of these families regardless of culture, country, or state blew me away every time. I want to share from my experience some advice for living with families not your own. 1. Everyone does their dishes differently. Most mommas are big on cleaning...
Continue reading...

Dominican Republic Dream

  As a kiddo, I dreamed about living in a Spanish-speaking country. I begged my dad to teach me Spanish so he took some Spanish classes and taught me what he could. I memorized songs in Spanish. No, I can’t remember them. Basically, all of me very much wanted to be Latin. My Dream To live in a Spanish-speaking country and become fluent, beautifully fluent in this romantic Spanish language. What About You? Did you have a dream to live...
Continue reading...

To the God of Waiting

A dear friend shared with me this quote, “Waiting is not just about what I get at the end of the wait; it’s about who I become as I wait.” She must have read 7 Ways To Follow God’s Will For Your Wait because I found that article when I searched the quote above because I wanted to find the person who said it. Finding ourselves in a period of waiting is frustrating. It’s tedious. While the city traffic spills...
Continue reading...

PRISM

  Pittsburgh Region International Student Ministries aka PRISM, not to be confused with “prison,” is one of my favorite Pittsburgh nonprofits. What PRISM Does A small team of globally-minded individuals, working out of the Bellefield Presbyterian Church on Fifth Avenue, organize events such as English conversation groups, social evenings, and trips to surrounding areas specifically for international students and their families. PRISM offers a cooking class for internationals so they can learn how to prepare favorite American foods and PRISM...
Continue reading...

Whiskey Sour

This is a tiny scene that I wrote for an old blog. For some reason, I still love it and wanted to share it with you all. “you’re afraid of love” That’s what the scarlet-shirted man at the bar said to me. I shrugged and took a swig of my whiskey sour. Who was he to say that anyway? When his drink was set before him, he grabbed it and moved to the other single woman at the bar slyly propositioning...
Continue reading...

Eating Dinner with a Korean

I plopped down my tray in the middle of the cafeteria. Most of the other conference attendees were done eating except the few stragglers and late-comers. Personally, I felt a bit peopled out since we had sessions all day long with meal breaks including a noisy room of people speaking many different languages. I bowed my head and then began eating. The table shifted and I looked up to find one of my Korean acquaintances sitting across from me. She’d...
Continue reading...