Confessions of X: the captivating new romance novel
Jan26

Confessions of X: the captivating new romance novel

The UMHB bookstore started selling Suzanne Wolfe’s novel the Confessions of X at the beginning of the spring semester and it was chosen as the book for discussion in the English Honor Societies book club, so I decided I would join in on the fun. The Confessions of X is a mix of historical fiction, Christian fiction and romance, and is an imaginative correspondent to Saint Augustine’s Confessions. The book follows the life of X, the daughter of a tile-layer and mysterious lover of Saint Augustine of Hippo. The novel paints a perfect picture of the ancient culture and is well researched despite it being historical fiction. Though we know X existed, we only know of who she was through Augustine’s Confessions and I think that Wolfe did a wonderful job keeping X vague enough to give her anonymity while still being personal enough for readers to relate with. The novel is described as “a reflection of what it means to love and lose… while deftly exploring one woman’s search for identity and happiness within very limited circumstances.” The book starts with X in her old age and we learn a lot about her life without giving too much away, but enough to leave you wanting more. In the second chapter, we start with the very beginning of her life and obtain background information, family, and beliefs before we go into the main storyline with Augustine. Readers watch X grow into a young woman, meet Augustine and start a family with him as his lover. Because of the difference in social classes, they can never marry, but knowing this, they both decide to love each other anyway. Now typically, I’m not a romantic, but I found myself rooting for a relationship I knew was bound to end but because of the way it was written, I couldn’t help myself. It was sweet to watch them fall in love and the adorable notions they made after they decided to be together. This book portrays a rare TRUE LOVE not often seen during this time period. The whole book is worded elegantly and the first few chapters need to be read slowly for the reader to fully comprehend the meaning behind the words, but after you start reading, you become more used to the style and it flows more freely off the tongue. I had a limited amount of knowledge concerning Augustine and his confessions, but I was still able to understand everything about him, their life, and the story. I enjoyed this book and would give it a 6 out of 10 at first glance, simply because I knew I...

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Life beyond a diagnosis photo gallery
Jan24

Life beyond a diagnosis photo gallery

Photo by Madeline Oden. jan. 19 2018 photo by Madi Oden Courtesy of Rachael Hopson Courtesy of Rachel Hopson Courtesy of Rachael...

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Cheerleaders compete in national contest
Jan24

Cheerleaders compete in national contest

The Crusader cheerleading team has returned from their competition in Orlando, Florida from January 12-18 to support our basketball and sports teams for the rest of this year. The cheer team came away with 8th place, out of fourteen other contestants in their division. While the team has previously gone to the National Cheerleading Association (NCA) competitions, this is the first year the team has gome to the Universal Cheerleaders Association (UCA) Nationals competition in Orlando, Florida. This is also the first year they went to nationals with new head coach Amanda Wrinkler. This will be the fourth year the cheerleading team has gone to nationals since the team ended their fifteen-year hiatus in 2014. The team took a break from competing last year due to a change in coaches. The team is composed of 19 students, all of which competed in Orlando. The routine was choreographed by Wrinkler and a friend from Oklahoma who teaches varsity cheer. First, they made the skeleton of the routine based on the score sheet and then added on from there after watching the girls’ skillsets throughout the year. Prior to heading to Orlando, the Cru cheerleading team held a showcase event at the Mayborn Campus Center on Thursday, January 11, to show students, faculty and family members the routine they would perform in Orlando. Wrinkler said she decided to hold the showcase because she wanted to give them a chance to be in front of their peers and their community before they arrived because they wouldn’t get much support in person while there. Wrinkler said that a few parents would be going to Florida, but not many had the chance to and this event would provide an opportunity for families who can’t go. “It has turned out to be a really cool opportunity for everyone to see the routine before we go,” Wrinkler said on the night of the showcase. Sidney Locke is a freshman vocal performance major who attended the performance. “I thought the routine was great,” Locke said. “You could tell the practice… really paid off because they did a good job.” Another student who attended the showcase was graduate exercise phycology major Justis Kelly. “I thought routine was good and you could tell how hard they worked and how hard they were practicing.” Kelly said. Though they did not win championship, they are champions in the hearts of the UMHB...

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‘Fixer Upper’ couple assists boys’ home
Nov16

‘Fixer Upper’ couple assists boys’ home

During mid-October, stars of the HGTV show Fixer Upper Chip and Joanna Gaines hosted their annual Silobration in Waco, where a local organization, The 4-1-1, was presented with a check that will benefit the Temple-area youth. The famous couple received many applications for the ‘Chipstarter’ Dream Launcher Contest and narrowed it down to six finalists who were each presented with an award at the Silobration. Crusader country’s very own Marcus Wimby, along with Kim White and Dion Alexander were among the finalists. They were awarded $40,000 to use in the demolition and remodel of a house in east Temple that will be used as a safe hangout for local boys. The goal of the 4-1-1 is to provide young boys in the East Temple community a safe and fun place to spend their time while learning different skills. This will all take place in a house that was previously owned by Civil Rights activist Myrtle Captain. This house has been the site of many charitable events and organizations in its lifetime, and after it is revamped it will once again be a place that helps the community. White, who owns the home, started 4-1-1 after realizing that there weren’t a lot of opportunities for young boys in the area. Her role will be to serve on the board of the non-profit, which will involve coming up with the programing for the house as well as acquiring food and donations. White plans to be involved in an administrative capacity, while Wimby and Alexander run the home. “We want a balance of experience and relationship,” White said, “Each boy will set their own goals: long-term or short-term and we will sit down with them and go over how to obtain those goals and how they can do certain things to reach those goals through every day decisions.” White said she chose Wimby and Alexander because they have offered to volunteer with the boys without an incentive. She also saw that the boys respected and responded well to Wimby and Alexander and that the two were able to guide the boys in a special way. “I knew that whatever this was, we needed to make sure it kept happening.” White said. Wimby is currently a senior business major here at UMHB and will graduate this December. He had previously met the Whites through volunteer work where he worked alongside Alexander. They both got along with the boys so well that when White shared her idea, they were on board. Wimby hopes to give the boys a positive outlook on life and help them realize that their circumstances are temporary and they won’t...

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Importance of knowing the history behind Thanksgiving
Nov15

Importance of knowing the history behind Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is a holiday many Americans look forward to. From the food and the Sunday football games to the family gatherings, Thanksgiving is a holiday that holds a special place in our hearts. What started out as a tradition to symbolize peace, later turned to hatred between Americans and Native Americans. This poses an interesting question – should we be celebrating a holiday that focuses on peace when there was actually a long string of violence afterwards? There is nothing wrong with celebrating the Thanksgiving holiday as a day of friendship and camaraderie. However, it would be lying through our teeth to say we celebrate this as a day of peace, because the peace did not last and it lead to the death and mistreatment of the Native Americans for centuries to come. This even continues today, with the standing rock pipeline issue in the Dakotas as an example. According to history.com, in 1621, the Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians shared an autumn harvest feast, which is considered to be one of the first Thanksgiving celebrations. In March, any remaining pilgrams went ashore and met an English speaking Abenaki Indian. A few days later, the Indian returned with another Native American named Squanto, who was a member of the Pawtuxet tribe. He had been previously kidnapped by an English sea captain and sold into slavery before escaping to London and returning to his homeland on an exploratory expedition. Squanto saw how badly the pilgrims were fairing in this new land and decided to teach them how to cultivate corn, extract sap from maple trees, catch fish in the rivers and avoid poisonous plants. He also helped the settlers forge an alliance with a local tribe called the Wampanoag. This alliance would endure for more than 50 years. This is the story we were taught as children. However, the peace was only temporary and the feast and treaty are tragically one of the sole examples of peace between the European colonists and Native Americans. Over the next few decades, relations between settlers and Native Americans deteriorated as the former group occupied more and more land. Supposedly, the first major dispute was in 1675 called King Philip’s War, that left some 5,000 inhabitants of New England dead, three quarters of those being Native Americans. In terms of percentage of population killed, King Philip’s War was more than twice as costly as the American Civil War and seven times more so than the American Revolution. Throughout the next few centuries, the American Indian wars killed millions of people from both sides and left a dark stain in American history. Wikipedia defines The...

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