Life Update: Summer Vacation

Hi everyone,
I’m currently on summer vacation, waiting to hear back on my grades for the semester and overall GPA for the year. I’m just hoping to graduate United with a 3.5 GPA, so a goal this year was to be 3.0 or higher. I graduated Gustavus with a 2.899 GPA, due to mental illness, and its been a goal of mine to hit above 3.0 for graduate school, now that I’m on meds, in stable housing, and am happily married with a fixed income.

But we’ll just see how this year went!

How am I doing at home? I hate my job at Walmart, but love my co-workers (especially Jimmy, Don, Denise, Sheila, and Michelle and Dave), so there’s that. I’m looking forward to getting health insurance in the fall with Walmart, since I’ll have been working there a full year come September (I’m only part-time, so that’s why I have to wait a year!).

Brendan (Middle) and friends just before Graduation!

My brother, Brendan, graduated from high school! He’s officially an adult, and has no idea what he wants to do with his life. But that’s okay – it takes a while and some life experience to figure that out!

I’m also really in love with studying Wesleyan and Methodist doctrine, and how I can apply it to my Disciple of Christ faith. With Disciples, since we don’t profess a set doctrine, we allow different theology camps in our church, acting in Unity of our love for our Savior, Jesus, and our neighbors. I’m a part of the Wesleyan/Methodist camp, as I pretty much consider myself a Methodist Exile/Undercover Agent. The reason I haven’t joined the local UMC in York is because of the Traditional Plan that was passed and later affirmed by the Judicial Board of the UMC. With that, all queer folks in gay relationships cannot be ordained, nor can queer marriages be given. It’s a terrible decision of the church, and I’m hoping it will be reversed in the future. Other denominations were in this situation in the late ninteties and early 2000’s, but the UMC seems to be one of the last ones to deal with this.

Well, that’s it! Thanks for reading!

Alleluia and Amen.

Love, Leigh Todd

Almost to Graduation!

IMG_20180530_153021814Hi everyone,

I hope everyone’s end-of-the-semester is going well, as mine is also wrapping up.  On a good few notes, I managed to transfer some dual-credit college courses that I took in high school to finish up my credit requirements at Gustavus, so I am all set to graduate!  I won’t be getting my diploma in person, since I owe a giant bill to Gustavus, but that’s okay – as long as I’m considered a graduate of Gustavus, that’s fine with me.  I’ll pay off my debts later on and receive my diploma in the mail.

In other news, Jacob and I pretty much finished packing everything in our dorm, and are now counting down the days to graduate.  I’ve finished my time at Holiday Gas Stations and finished a five-year career of student managing for the Throwers on the track team.  With that, I am done working in St. Peter for good.  Now, I’m all set for home.

If you’ve seen my Instagram, you’ll notice I’ve said I’m a Pan-Christian Unitarian/Social Trinitarian.  What that means is that I find spiritual value/insight in all of Christendom (all Christian churches) and take from each of them what makes sense to me.  This includes Unitarian Protestant/Mormonism/Orthodox etc.  I still read the Book of Mormon and listen to past General Conferences.  I also love the idea of Christ Incarnate and Divine Liturgy sacrament in the Orthodox church.  But, I still place a heavy emphasis on God the Father such as in Unitarianism.

I hope y’all have a great end-of-the-semester, and thanks for checking in!  This will be the last update until I graduate!

God speed,

Leigh Todd-Lestina

Hopeful but realistic

IMG_20180513_160951638-EFFECTSHi Everyone,
Thanks for stopping by on my first installment of how things are going with Seminary and onward.  Right now, I’m still in St. Peter, waiting to graduate from Gustavus and am preparing for a fun summer with my sister, her girlfriend, my husband Jacob, and saving money.  I’m also preparing to register for classes and take my new student orientation for United.

On some sad news, Jacob and I have been denied from having housing at United’s on-campus student housing.  In actuality, I’m not very sad about it since United Theological Seminary of the Twin Cities is moving campuses to somewhere in St. Paul, MN.  This will make finding housing in St. Paul much cheaper than in New Brighton (which is a very expensive suburb of Minneapolis).  So, I’m actually hopeful that Jacob and I can find a small studio in St. Paul that is cheap and clean.  We’ve got some time ahead of us to build my credit score and save some money before we apply for apartments, sot that’s good.

As for as registering for classes, my Seminary adviser said that taking two classes is perfect if I’m going to be both working and going to grad school.  So that’s good!  So, I’ll take two classes for the first semester (which, at six credits, is still full-time at United).  And unlike Gustavus, which charges a flat rate at Full-Time and Part-time, United will charge by credit, so I’ll won’t be charged a whole bunch of extra money just because I’m a lowest-credit full-time student.  That’ll be nice!  This’ll make United much cheaper than Gustavus.

Speaking of money, United will cost about a little bit over $10,000 per year.  This is drastically different than Gustavus, which is a little over $50,000 per year.  Big change!  This means smaller loans.  And one of the good things about not taking student housing is that I won’t be taking out more loans to pay for housing, which is better overall.  Paying for apartment while going to school will be tough, but with only taking two classes (one on Thursday and another only three days in October), I’ll be able to work full-time.  Plus, I’m hoping that I can save some money over the summer to pay multiple month’s of rent in advance.  This is hopeful wishing, but I’m just trying to be both realistic and optimistic.

Thanks for checking in!

Have a good rest of your April.  I”ll likely check in again in May, towards graduation.

Leigh Todd