a delightful thing happened coming home from work

I was walking home from work the other day and heard some guys playing Arabic music from their car. I thought, people don’t just generally play Arabic music unless they’re (1) way cool or (2) Arab. Both kinds of people who I’m always keen to meet.

So I stopped, said some Arabic hellos and they invited me into the convenience store they own (the One Stop Shop on Indiana Ave), gave me some Nestea and a tasty pastry and some Arabic coffee — about a cup and a half, which equals approximately 30 servings.

We talked a little about where they’re from, how I learned Arabic studying in Jordan, and about what’s going on at the Roosevelt Center across the street. Turns out Ali and Muhammad are from Palestine and Hatim is from Iraq. They’re right next to Alma Madera’s clothing store on one side and the Thai market on the other. Who knew Elkhart was so metropolitan? Looking forward to having occaision for good chats around there in the near future.


Again, it is, in fact, a blog.

So after that senseless slaughter of commas, I’ve got news! Sorta.

Tomorrow is green bean casserole night, everyone’s invited, as usual.

Wheelchair Help work progresses through frustration and confusion.

I think I really lucked out when I signed on to this unit to find such easy-to-live-with people. However, the lack of interwebs (The Internet for all of you normal folk) is starting to make me go a little coocoo. Actually its probably the best thing that ever happened to me, but still, it’s a drastic departure.

REST march comin’ up, everyone be there.

What else can I say? Hmmm… Halloween should be fun. Still not sure what to do for it.

Watched The Fountain last night. Had weird dreams afterwords. Attributing it to The Fountain. Not watching it again.

Sing the Story, contrary to popular/Jason belief is purple.

This chapter in my life is now entitled ‘In Which CJ learns that dry milk costs 7.00.”

Also, I’ve been writing a good deal now, and I finally have something finished! Go me! Only took me… 6 years. Oh. Well, hey, now I get to enjoy the run around of publishing companies. Whoo.

Aside from that, life is grand. Later all!


Hey, it’s a blog.

So here are my myriad thoughts. Be prepared, gentle reader, for a blast of weirdness.

Started off last week at Wheelchair help. Fun stuff, involving paper, clipboards, a boss who goes about a million miles a minute, which is ok, I suppose. Not my style of doing things, but I didn’t make the rules of the universe. Can’t beleive they forgot to ask. Seriously, folks. Beyond that, I dropped a piece of a paper folding machine on my left big toe, which explains the lovely bandage. Thank you, Dr. Sarah.

Beyond that, life continues on. We had Tempura this evening, and were joined by Pastor Paula, Ross and Jordan Weibe-Powell, a real treat, all. We’re getting a ramp put in by Simon, and we’re really really hoping that he’s not moving all those concrete blocks by his lonesome. It’s currently a big nasty pile of dirt, which made it harder for our dear brother Ross to get into our humble abode, but we continued undaunted. Jeanette was gracious enough to loan us an electric wok for making the Tempura in, which, for those of you who don’t know, requires boiling veggie oil. This was uncool in Sarah’s book, so Jason and I took charge. It was a smashing success, and I can now add this to the (admittedly miniscule) roster of foods I can make.

Totally off-topic, but does anyone know the best way to get from Rio Grande, Ohio to Elkhart?

I have a trip coming up soon, I believe, but I am entirely unsure at this point. I was planning on going to West Virginia to meet up with some people but it looks like that’s falling through. This disheartens me greatly, making me quite the sad panda. Still, there may still be hope. If not, life goes on, however sadly and panda-y it may be.

Had a meeting with RSVP, which is another volunteer organization, so that’s good. They’ll funnel people over towards Wheelchair Help for me, which makes my job about ten times easier, that is, whenever I get to that particular part of the job. Right now, I’m a glorified handyman. Had some issues today putting a chair together, which was most vexatious. I had to pull the darn thing apart, screws, bolts, nuts, and all and it turned out that half of that work was entirely unneeded when I got it put back together. And don’t even get me started on the foot pedals that I had to dig through a ten-gallon drum for. Then, it turned out they were on the other side of the building. It’s getting better over there, but still, there was much wailing and gnashing of teeth at the shoddy organization.

So it’s about 12:30 at night, so it’s about time for me to seal my hatch, or stop typing, or whatever, and get some glorious, glorious sleep. Until later, kids!



Hello from the Jubilee House!

Actually, hello from PSMC, where I (sarah) am currently accessing the Internet. We have decided to try – try – to maintain a house blog. We make no promises that the updates will be regular.

To start off, I thought I’d post a portion of the announcement that went out today in Andrew’s notes:

News from Jubilee House: telephone – 294-4967

Jason Shenk wears two hats: He works four days with Elkhart Housing Partnership in neighborhood development. He works one day a week with AMIGOS – Youth of Mennonite World Conference preparing for the Assembly 2009 in Paraguay.

Sarah Thiessen juggles at least four balls! In any one week she works at Center for Community Justice, Church Community Services, Center for Healing and Hope, Roosevelt Elementary School (science assistant),

CJ Irelan has begun working at Wheelchair Help, an organization which provides wheelchairs for people who cannot afford or get it through insurance. CJ works with clients and volunteers who are reconditioning the wheelchairs.

These three are making Jubilee House their home. We anticipate two additional members joining the unit in January.

• Come to Jubilee House on any Wednesday evening for a meal. Just call ahead and bring something to put on the table.

• Include Jason, Sarah and CJ for a family meal or social activity. Friday evening, Saturdays and Sundays are the best days.

• Invite Jason, Sarah and CJ to meet with your small group or Sunday School class social to hear more about their work in the community.

From the Jubilee House Support Committee