2002. A HUGE year for me. I was an 8th grader at the age of 14. I went to Washington DC and NYC on my spring break trip. My first trip away from my parents was pretty traumatic for me. But it was also an amazing time. I was amazed by DC. Seeing the monuments and the sights was just incredible. I especially loved being up in the Washington Monument. That was an incredible view. We got to meet our old senator Ted Stevens and even got to meet Ted Kennedy! I've been wanting to go back ever since. I went through like 7 disposable cameras on my trip, but I'd love to go back and really document it this time! This photo was taken in Times Square right before we saw the Lion King on Broadway! We went about 6 months after 9/11, so Ground Zero was really profound. We went up in the Empire State Building, to Ellis Island, to NBC studios, and floated by the Statue of Liberty.
8th grade graduation is a huge deal in my hometown. All the girls go out and buy a nice dress to wear. Here I am with my best friends at the time. We had no idea what life had ahead of us next! Our speaker at graduation was Iditarod champion Martin Buser.
That summer, I went to Creation Festival. My love of Jars of Clay got started there. It was a wonderful time. I think Dad even enjoyed himself! Unfortunately, this is the only photo I have of myself from that time!
After the summer started, I switched schools and started attending the Christian school. I made new friends there and that is where I met C! It really changed my life, I think, and I am really, really glad that I made the decision to go there. I played volleyball for the season and just had a blast.