Monday, September 21, 2009


So these two weeks are killer. I have four exams and four papers due within them. Again why am I taking 18 credits? I don't even have a good answer to that.

Creative Nonfiction is enjoyable albeit strenuous to my mind. I enjoy writing, but I also enjoy having a life. I have written one essay so far and have started a second one. My first was on Colonial Williamsburg vs. the real Williamsburg and I'm glad we get to rewrite and revise because I know I did not explain my thoughts very well. This next essay I'm writing about the Battle of the Wilderness and my freshman seminar where we dissected the battle day by day. I'm hoping it turns out better the first time around than my first essay

American History
I'm enjoying Emmons as a teacher, but not the fact that she is explaining basic ideas, i.e. thesis, primary vs. secondary documents, to us. I realize we have freshman in our class, but seriously if you don't know what these are than go back to your high school. It seems like we are going over information drilled into me since elementary school so I'm thinking I should have taken Colonial American history instead of a survey.

Hola. That is about all I know. But seriously I'm better at writing and reading the language from six years of Latin than actually speaking Espanol.

Latin America
I'm really enjoying learning about Indians before Columbus. We got it so damn wrong it is not even funny. They were just as civilized as the western empires in their day but by the time of the Spanish, they were backwoods again.

The Coming of the Civil War
My second Pilkington class and I have to say way better than the first. I'm actually taking notes and paying attention. And he is actually teaching. He still wears goofy ass ties and makes werid ass jokes, but overall way better the second time around. Maybe because I actually like this time period over the Western Culture bs HSC makes us take.

Museum Practices
This is my independent study, but it is more like job. We are catalouging a ton of pictures and trying to id all the men we can in order to put them on exhibit one day in the musuem.

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Is it Fall Break yet?

So I haven't even finished a full week of classes and I am already looking forward to Fall Break. I mean I wish it was this weekend.

I'm taking 18 credit hours, a mistake I'm quickly realizing, but I am determined to stick it out and finish all 18 even if I'm buried six feet under by the time I am done.

I am however determine to blog more this semester as I am taking a creative nonfiction class and I hear this will help me get in the mood to write daily. It might not be a daily blog but I will make an attempt.

Well off to read 1491, America, and Liberty and Power
This is me right about now:

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Servant Heart

This past summer I wanted to dedicate to God my service to WCRC's summer camp. I struggled all summer with letting Him take control of everything. I don't know if I succeeded but I do know that it was only because of Him I survived.

I was an assistant Program Director for a summer camp and I did the job part time. I ran around three and a half days a week trying to get a weeks worth of stuff done in that time frame. I saw others around me moving through the motions of their job without taking initiative to even help out a little and frankly it pissed me the hell off. There I was moving like a maniac throughout the day so I could have some time off to enjoy my summer with some really cool people and my other staffers were inside rather than out with the campers, participating in their activities, or really making any effort to what I saw.

I am indebted to this camp because it saved me (in the protestant sense of the word) 9 summers ago. I have been back ever since. This summer was my last out there (like two summers before this) and I leave without any deeper since of His presence because I allowed myself to take control and my feelings to cloud my judgment of people.

But all in all the campers enjoyed themselves and that is the only thing I could have asked for.

I guess I'm just a work in progress...

Monday, June 22, 2009

summer so far...

so I've been at the MOC for a couple weeks now and have thoroughly enjoyed my experience. I've worked on numerous projects like catalouging thier library with the Library of Congress call numbers, catalouging prints and sketches, research requests, and helping collections reorganize thier photo collection.

On the days I'm not at the MOC I'm back at Williamsburg Christian Retreat Center working with thier summer camp for the sixth summer. I'm a part time Assistant Program Director. I am working with camper registration, cabin assignments, and helping counselors with what they need. I'm glad I'm back and I'm glad I'm only there a couple of days a week.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

quick update

so i've found a paying job! I'm the part-time assistant program director at WCRC this summer! haha Awesome 200 a week for 3 1/2 days really! I'm excited. Working as the program assistant sunday afternoons and teusday/thursday and the office on SAturdays. Yes...

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Day 1

So I've just finished my first day at the Museum of Confederacy. I traveled back 200 years as a student sitting in a little classroom somewhere in Dixie. I got to look through the children books of Varina Davis and some textbooks from the Confederacy on arithmetic, geography, and grammar. It was pretty neat. That was really about all I did. That and meet a ton of people. There are six intern with the library alone this summer so there are always people around which is nice. I'm sure I will have more to report later on as I continue working...

Monday, May 18, 2009


So I've just returned from Boston, MA and it was an awesome time. My parents and I went to the JFK Library, USS Constitution, the Freedom Trial (with lots of stops) and Concord and Lexington. Following is a list of 5 things I learned while in Boston:

1. There are still superheroes roaming the United States
2. There is only one pub where you can drink Sam Adams while looking at him.
3. Bostonians are obsessed with Dunkin' Donuts (I think they keep them in business)
4. Boston has tons of smokers
5. They also love to run.

Well next Wednesday I start my internship at the Museum of Confederacy and I am really looking forward to it. But right now i have to find a job that will pay me I contacted Food for Thought, a restaurant I used to work at in high school and hopefully i will hear back soon.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Winding down just to start it back up again...

So I have five days left of my sophomore year at Hampden-Sydney. Tuesday I am done with exams and my sophomore school year. Just as school winding down my summer is packed full of activity. My parents and I are going to Boston for vacation before I start my internship at the Museum of Confederacy! I am really excited about working there this summer. I am in the library so I get to look at 19th century documents and either transcribe them or simply help patrons with researching their projects or possibly their family.

So I think this blog might become a retelling of my adventures at the Museum of Confederacy and what I do this summer. This will not only keep a record of everything I am doing it will inform y'all as well.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Cleaning the Past

So it might be the historian in me but I loved digging through my grandmothers files today. Not in a stalk-ish sketch way, but she passed away a few weeks ago and today started the process of cleaning up her possessions in her house.

Just my mumma, dad and I were there today I had the task of starting on her filing cabinet. I think I looked through thousands of receipts from 1980, but it was really interesting to see the elderly keep as important information. But what the real find was, was letters from the 1940s between my grandmother and her boss about her leaving the telephone company for another one around 1943. This is history, and it's my family history. I wish I could keep everything we have been finding but unfortunately we don't have any room for it all.

I'm getting the bookcases, which will be nice since I think I have an addiciton. The first step is always addmitting the problem so here it goes: My name is Nathan Ryalls and I am a book-a-holic. There that's doen now. So hopefully one day they will be filled with all my books in my Hampden-Sydney themed office!

well I'm writing to procrastinate my Roman History homework so I guess I should go ahead and start that.

Friday, April 10, 2009

By His Wounds

So another week has gone by and I continually gain more assignments and work to complete before this semester will end.

Today is Good Friday, the celebration and remembrance of Christ's death upon the cross for our sins. I want to share a video of "By His Wounds" written and sung by Mac Powell. I think it simply says it all.

Remember Christ came to save and died upon the cross for us. My friend Megan, speaking at Encounter, ended her talk with asking "He made salvation possible for you; what have you done for Him lately?"

Well what have you?

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

4th Day

So this past weekend has been filled with so many emotions. First my grandmother died last Thursday and that evening I went away to Camp Bethel for Encounter with Christ 165. It was exactly what I needed at this point in my life. I meet so many amazing people with such a fire for Christ it is unreal. They have helped me through this time so much and I thank each and everyone for being a part of my life.

The theme was Rocks and how Christ is the rock Eternal. I really had mixed feelings about going on the retreat but being there was the best thing for me. The picture is the foundation of rocks we made Sunday morning after I left for my grandmother's funeral, but know that so many people were praying for me helped me through that tough hour.

So thank you everyone and lets continue to live the fourth.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Habitat for Humanity

So this Spring Break, instead of lazying around the house, spending time doing absolutely nothing I hammered more nails than I can count, I've installed five windows, shoveled more pounds of dirt than I would care to mention, and help build a house for a single mother and her daughter. It was a rewarding experience to work alongside the homeowner, Ashley and to meet her daughter Deja. The joy on their faces as their house was being build before their eyes is the reason I joined Habitat for Humanity. This great foundation helps house millions and to give them affordable and decent places to live their lives.

Five Hampden-Sydney students, myself included, ventured down to Pickens County in South Carolina staying on Lake Keowe and helped to build a house in Easley 30 minutes down the road. This idea of building a hosue is something I would have never done in high school aka hard labor. That was never in my forethought. But now I have been hanging off ladders stretching into weird contortions just to hammer a nail into the wall. This was all new to me. Over a year of working with Habitat and I finally get to actually work on the hosue. I've painted a closet, cleared land, laid the floor bases, and helped to open a ReStore, but now I feel like an accomplished Habitater.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

March For Life

Today I gathered with thousands of my fellow Americans to stand up against the murder of millions of innocent lives.  Our cause is to fight for those who cannot speak.  The unborn, who live in thousands of mother's wombs and who are killed by the thousands daily.  

This was my first March and though I might have only been a small voice sanding up for what I feel is wrong, but I hope that Congress, President Obama, and the Supreme Court heard our voices today at the Mall.  I hope they realize that we will not be silenced.  

The Freedom of Choice Act is nothing but a radical atrocity saying they stand for Woman's rights, but what about the thousands of women who live inside their mother's womb where are their rights?  We say that abortion is a choice in this country, but we don't allow murderer's the choice to kill their victims, and frankly that is a double standard.  Abortion is MURDER no matter which way you dice it.  It kills a life before it gets a chance to fully live.  

God tells us that he knew us in the womb, he knitted us in the womb.  Why mess with God?  He will prevail in the end.  

My favorite poster stated "Father forgive them for they know not what they do." 

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

President Obama

So we have a new president and it is exciting time in American history.  However, I don't think we needed all the hype for it. Yes, Obama is black, but does that really matter.  NO.  He is an American first and foremost.

Though I didn't vote for Obama I am willing to give him a chance.  I did enjoy his speech today, the history nerd it me liked all the allusions to past conflicts, presidents, and struggles in our history.  

PS i think $150 million might be a tad pricy for an inauguration during these "tough economic times" but hey that is just me.

Will write more later