Monday, October 01, 2007

Alma Mater Matters

It's hard to believe 30 years have passed since we graduated from North Park. Where did the years go? Our wonderful friends, Marny and Tracy, traveled from their home state and stayed with us for the weekend as we celebrated our class reunion.
Before anything could begin, we had to "dress" Lina in sunglasses and handbag for old times sake. We are shocked and distressed to learn this tradition has stopped! One of three tables for our class of '77.
The street of Carmen was closed for the block party.
John and Alex Anne and future alum, Ava blowing kisses
Sue C. (J now) couldn't be here, so daughters Kiera and Taryn
represented her...we missed you, Sue!!! And Greg, too!
With Tracy, Marny and Loren
Karen, Chip and Deb
Food and "fellowship" at Ron and Deb's house. Yes, there was Chicago-style pizza served!
Deb, not Deb, Deb and Deb (Can you tell that Debbie Reynolds was popular the year we were born?How many newborns are named Debra/Deborah now?)
By the way, the lovely "not Deb" is Karen!
Our day began early with a class reunion breakfast, a fabulous block party where we saw hundreds-no thousands of students, classmates and alumni. It was wonderful to see my sister and her whole family, Anne, Jed and John, too. The afternoon football game was hot, but fun.
We got to see our son on the football field at halftime as he was on the Homecoming court. (He'll always be "King" to me even if he didn't get the Viking crown.) We went out to eat in a fabulous restaurant, walked along Lake Michigan, and ended our day with classmates at a reunion party...then finally fell into bed due to exhaustion as we are getting to be older alumni.
Our weekend concluded on Sunday with a chapel service featuring the Gospel Choir (John's in it) with the sermon/message by the author and lecturer, Dr. Kevin Leman. He's the one who wrote The Birth Order Book and some 30 other titles. Dr. Leman spoke on "The Deception of Perfection" and he captured the attention of the audience with his own imperfect life and stories about nearly flunking out of college (he's also an alumni of NP), eating a whole pumpkin pie then showing us his belly profile as an example of imperfection!
We laughed until tears came to our eyes, yet the message of us all failing to measure up to our shortcomings hit home with me. I am imperfect, too and very thankful for God's grace. And I'm also very thankful I am a graduate of this barely-known Christian institution of higher learning!
Here I learned how to think more, study harder (thanks, Wes, for introducing me to the library once we started dating!), challenge my issues of faith, make true lifetime friends, survive life in a major city, live on little money (like $16.00 for a whole semester!!), and purposefully live the NP slogan "Where Faith and Learning Meet." I am imperfect in all that I do, to be sure, but that's okay. Life on earth is imperfect. Alma Maters are imperfect. But I am glad for this one of mine!


simplicity said...

I loved this post. How neat to see all the special relationships and ties to a very special alma mater.

If they were to make commercials for NPU, they should most certainly cast you! You'd be PERFECT!

Marny said...

Hey Doob-
Nice recap of the weekend. I just updated my blog, too. Check it out!

melissa said...

such a great post, deb. i'll be paying off my education until i'm forty, but thankfully feel confident that it was the best choice for me. my days at npu were challenging, inspiring, and transforming. i think of how different i am now from my first day - and how much college influenced those subtle shifts and changes in me. i'm glad you had such a good experience, as well, and such a fun homecoming weekend to boot! and i'm THRILLED that you're thinking of visiting spain. i hope you go - and that you have even a SHRED of the fun that i did! :)

simplicity said...

Hi Deb, his shirt says "Got Old?"

It cracks me up everytime he wears it, which is quite often! :)

Katie said...

What a great blog! It makes me wonder if I'm going to have posts like these after I graduate from Bradley! :)

P.S. We have a Lydia Moss Bradley statue at Bradley where it's tradition to put clothes, flowers, etc on her and take pictures with her. Maybe one of these days I'll post all my Lydia pictures!!

Spirit Bear said...

I am loving that statue of Lina and want to know more about her. I would like to see more statues around. Could you suggest art work and sculpture for the "dream library" meeting, please?(real art) I read in the New Yorker today about a project by a poetry society which posts poems in the buses and subways of New York.