Friday, August 31, 2007

The best things in life

Yesterday while my husband and I were sitting with the rest of the soccer parents during daughters practice, our four year old made a new friend. Forsaking the sparkly new playground the two of them beelined for the best plaything life has to offer. A giant pile of dirt. As we watched the two of them we reminisced about dirt piles from our past. Doesn't everyone have a dirt pile in their past?

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

"There is no dark side of the moon really.

Matter of fact it's all dark."

After the initial snag, the day of fasting went well. I remember once upon a time when fasting included vast amounts of quiet reflection. I could ROCK the quiet reflection. Last night there was a total lunar eclipse. If ever there was a moment crying out for quiet reflection that would be it. Picture if you will: sitting peacefully in the wee small hours of the morning before the world awakens, gazing up at the glowing white orb as, slowly, a shadow creeps across the surface taking an ever enlarging bite till, at totality, an eerie orange glow lingers until the shadow begins to recede and once again the moon is full, faintly lit in the light of sunrise.

The reality:

Fussing with a camera that is smarter than you. Children of various sizes roaming in and out of the house at four in the morning. Husband standing in the driveway, in his boxers, wondering when you're coming back to bed. A telescope that is also, apparently, smarter than you. Dog pooping in the neighbors yard. Thirteen year old daughter frightened by the paper delivery guy. Retrieving the blind cat every time she wandered out the open door. The street light that only seems to work when we are attempting to observe celestial events. Chasing the moon through the neighborhood from one gap in the trees to another. And last but not least, mosquitoes.

You know what? The reality is better. I am blessed to have children that are willing to create memories together. God reached down into our family and knit us together in the chaos of that night time viewing.

Here, I'll throw in a photo. Since I don't have an adequate telephoto lens I was working on a series of shots that would show the progression of the eclipse. Then my daughter moved the camera. That was the end of that idea. All I ended up with was a handful of random shots of a speck of white in a field of black. So I went out at around six o'clock by myself and took this shot of the moon before it dipped below tree level.

If you'd like to see some quality photos head over to flickr and do a search using the keyword "lunar eclipse"

Monday, August 27, 2007 NOT exasperate your children...

I was supposed to fast today in order to pray about the search for our new youth minister. I was all set for it. Then I promised the four year old a donut at Krispy Kreme and low and behold I forgot all about the fast. I didn't "conveniently" forget either. I really forgot.

Do over.

It will be oh so much more meaningful now with the leftover donuts calling to me from the kitchen. I need to find a place to hide those because the kids are fasting too. They can't handle that kind of pressure. It could be fun though. When I did my forty day fast the kids found it amusing to wave things under my nose, like pizza, and make a great show of enjoying their food. If I weren't so mature I could get some great pay back. I am though. Mature.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

How to deal

I am trying to come to terms with how to deal with a situation as a Christian. I'm leaving the details out, which probably isn't fair but I am sick of rehashing this experience.

In brief the situation entails me and my daughter being attacked verbally at church. The attacker is not a member of our church.

I feel that we have the complete support of the church leadership in taking the position that we were the victims in this situation which I very much appreciate. But how do I choose to respond?

I kind of think I know how I should respond as a Christian but my heart is not there. The best I can manage at this point is to endeavor not to harbor anger. I should not even say that I am managing that because I'm not. I am only able to ask God to manage it for me. Interestingly every time my radio station is tuned to Christian radio someone is discussing how to deal with anger, both in yourself and in others. My exact situation.

I am hanging on to Proverbs 15:1
1 A gentle answer turns away wrath,
but a harsh word stirs up anger.

Proverbs 29:11
11 A fool gives full vent to his anger,
but a wise man keeps himself under control.
I am also taking a stab a dealing with it using humor. It would have been entirely appropriate to state at the height of this man's ranting, "I wasn't expecting a kind of Spanish Inquisition."

Sadly I have very little hope of any positive resolution but stay tuned. If God deems it useful to provide some sort of miracle I will shout it from the blogosphere, and every other sphere.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Well that was fun

Ok, I'm back.

I've been working on a mural project for a new daycare. So while I was taking a break from "Drawing on the wall" I was actually drawing on a wall. Ironic, no? It was a nice change of pace. More often than not my work, volunteer or otherwise, involves hours and hours of isolation in front of the computer screen. During this project I got to interact with actual people. It was also nice to get my hands dirty again. I love graphic work in all it's forms but there is something so satisfying about becoming physically involved in the work. It does my brain good to make creative decisions that can't be erased with the click of a button and that I don't have to "save" every five minutes or risk losing it for all eternity. Fantastic. Let's face it, it's also nice to have someone believe you are worthy to be paid for your work. That never ceases to amaze me, you want to pay me for this?!

Now, I arrive home to a mountain of laundry and find that I have somehow become the parent of a senior in High School. Ok, so when did that happen.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

To those of you with real jobs.....

I salute you.

How do you do it? I'm working on a real job right now. Well, it's a paying job anyway. In any case between that and the start of school the blog visits are nil, which is sad because major things have been happening. Major to me, that is. I'll be back soon. My deadline is the middle of next week. Maybe by then I will have processed "things" enough to make sense of them in writing.

Till next week.

Thursday, August 9, 2007

I'm not a gardener....

...but I play one on T.V.

In spite of the high temperatures that are catching up to us here we have been blessed (or cursed if you have a leaky basement) with plenty of rain. My tomatoes are going great guns. The peppers are freaking out now that I've protected them from the bunnies. Watermelons and pumpkins are coming along nicely. So can anyone explain these cucumbers?

One measly pickle and a mutant. That's all I could produce. I thought cucumbers were no-brainers.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Move along people, it's just a dream.

I know how it's boring to listen to people talk about their dreams and all so just move on and let me work through this on my own.

I have three reoccurring nightmares. One is tornadoes. Another is Nuclear explosions. The third is Earth ending Apocalypse's. I suppose they are three varieties of the same dream, really.

This morning was the Apocalypse variety. The sun went out. No supernova, it just burned out. I was speaking on the phone with my mom while watching it happened and I was trying to get off without being rude and hanging up on her so I could spend my last moments with my family. After I got off the phone I turned on CNN. Then I woke up before things could get too tragic.

Analysis? Could be the end of summer. Could be the one hundred plus temps we're expecting. Could be I watch too much cable news.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Did you know you have a snake in your mouth?

I found that out last Sunday. I've got one too.

Occasionally I have a very bad attitude problem. Generally I don’t like going to church while on vacation. In the small town Churches of Christ you don’t really know what you are going to get. My experience with small town churches has been ummm…..less than stimulating. Since we were on vacation with my in laws and they attend church, no questions asked, every Sunday, I braced for the worst. To my shame I prayed that God would somehow prevent our attendance. Well, He didn’t prevent us from attending, but the church we ended up at? Wow!

My in laws had a church in mind that they were looking for but were unable to find it. Their break lights would light up every time they passed a Church of Christ but in the end they would pass by. Then came the church that they didn’t pass by. I don’t know why they stopped, but really, I do. Know what I mean? I could see it immediately. How do I put this? We were the only white people in the entire building right down to the enormous African American Jesus mural that covered one of the walls. I turned to my Fifteen Year old and said, “Now this could be fun.” And it was. I think I will have to wait many a week before I find a service as uplifting as this one was

Now, how to integrate that worship experience into my own repressed style……that is the challenge.