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Showing posts from 2006

Ready to Party at 6:15 p.m.!

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A totally silly, vampy pose, but I am in a silly mood tonight!

A Day in the life of . . . MOI! 9:00 - 5:30 p.m.

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9:00 Go to Suburban Christian Church in the fog





12:30 George taught the 9:30 and 11:00 a.m. Sunday School classes on the State of World Missions. He is talking to his former discipler, Phil. (another reason we switched to this church!)





1:15 Traditional Stop at "Coffee Culture" for one Latte, one Steamer, and two fruit smoothies.






2:00 - 3:15 Elliptical Cardio at Timberhill. If you click on the picture, and scroll down a bit, you see an enlarge view of me in the window taking the picture.





3:30 p.m. A totally unflattering picture of me doing my Core workout on a stability ball.









4:00 - 5:30 Answer emails, reveiw news websites, post my end of the year answers on forum, and download pictures on to the computer to post this blog entry!



ACK! I have to go and take a shower for dinner and party! 5:30 - 9:00 a.m. tomorrow still to come!

Candlelight Dinner for Teala

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Teala turned 48 today, and I had a small and intimate dinner party with four of her close friends. It was a lovely time. George was so sweet to cook all the food. We cleaned up yesterday, and it ended up being a really relaxed time of getting ready for it. The boys were gone for about five hours to watch the Beaver game at the H's. So, we worked on our respective projects (scrapbooking for me and paper for publication for George) and watched the Beaver game (I listened more than watched). It was a very nice time all the way around.



I cried for the Beavers and am very happy for them in every way.







I am still evaluating some things these days. I am still blown away at the kindness of so many people around me. I am so blessed.



Saddaam H. was hanged today. It was an strange thing to have a dinner party and go in to see George in the bedroom and have him tell me that.



Today had all the ingredients for a great day

Good night's sleep Good quality time with George in the morning Cleaned the whole house as a family - boys downstairs and George and I did the upstairsDid four loads of laundry Scrapbooked and had great friend-to-friend with Kim as we did it. She validates me! There is nothing like face-to-face time with a good friend. It beats the phone or email any day of the week. Walk with George as the sun set over Glen Eden . . . ahhhhhhhhhh. News Being here restingChocolate!

I love being on vacation.

Vacation!

Ahhhh.....I had my workout clothes all placed out on the floor at the end of my bed ready for a 5:30 a.m. blast off to the Group Power class. I woke up at 4:45 a.m. and thought I would sleep a bit longer.

I reawakened at 5:38 a.m., and it was too late.

So, I thought, "I can go to the 9:20 a.m. class!" Well, I am glad I checked the schedule this morning because they changed it, and there isn't another class until 7:30 tonight.

So, the sun is shining, and George and I are going for a walk. Plan B always has a silver lining.

Still feeling somewhat squishy about things that happened last week. Don't know what I am going to do about it, but I am going to just take it one day at a time. I am still sort of sad about all the fast changes. George also reminded me of something that I had forgotten I had said that has made me wonder whether I should make a change. I am just listening and waiting.

Today, George will do Dial-A-Book and take the boys to music lessons so that I can…

Christmas Day . . . Santa Got SMASHED!

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I really love my dh's family! I was feeling a bit tired and still a bit sick, but the five hours we spent with his family just picked me up and encouraged me like no other.



Yummy things to eat and fun people to greet!






Great kids to share in the fun.




Making ice cream in the ball and playing catch with it!
Aunt Dot wins a 4 lb Chocolate Santa that we divide up between us by smashing Santa!















What a great time! I really loved the "pick me up"!

Merry Christmas!

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Well, Paul hardly slept at all, and he really wanted to get up. I heard him going up and down the stairs at about 4 a.m.!

After we were all done opening gifts, he said that the whole Christmas was perfect except for not being able to have the Cowden Christmas Party.

We had a great low-key season, and I never "dipped" because of the holiday. I did dip because of the TDS thing and M asking me about the future with M. That made me sad to have to dredge all of that stuff up again in my heart, but Christmas was so wonderful. I had a great time in every way.

Paul was a little disappointed when he got another version of Roller Coaster Tycoon, but I assured him that it was the latest and best model. Then he felt bad for being disappointed and kept looking at me to make sure I was OK. Poor guy. I'm OK! I think he is fine now. He installed it and thought it looked really neat.

George got a book from one of the boys in the boys' group called Better Dads, Stronger Sons by Rick Johns…

Still, Still, Still

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Before I had children, I always dreamed of being able to sing my kids to sleep on Christmas Eve singing the song "Still, Still, Still."

When the kids were toddlers, they didn't like it when I sang to them. So, I let that dream die. It was OK.

But earlier this month, while we were listening to a Mannheim Steamroller CD with this song (a beautiful rendition BTW), Paul said, "What are the words to that song?" I started singing a bit and then I jokingly told him that I have tried to sing that song to them on several Christmas Eves, but I was booed. He said, "Mom, I really don't remember doing that." I said, "Well you were young."

This evening, Paul and Michael both asked me if I would sing the song to them after Dad read Bartholomew's Passage. I was shocked. They said, "No, mom, really."

While George read, I went downstairs and played the melody line on the piano. Then, George said, "They are ready for you." I decided I w…

Christmas Eve Freewrite

I want to sing and dance and say, "I am feeling so much better!" I actually went to the club this afternoon and had a good cardio workout, and I didn't terrible afterward! That hasn't happened for about two weeks now. So, YIPPEE!

Our first Christmas at Suburban Christian was all it was meant to be and more. I loved it. We had a couple behind us who was honored because today is their 60th wedding anniversary! I love how Pastor Steve acknowledges these milestones of the congregation.

He also introduced us because we (really George) will be leading a Sunday School class on "The State of the World" in missions. They are so eager and up for everything there. I love how Steve also makes everyone feel so welcome.

We came back and I had some more St. Lucia Day Cinnamon Rolls while I gave Becky her "virtual gift" on TDS. I loved it, and I think she did too. She is a good one to "shop" for!

Then, I hit that club, and it was PACKED. I wasn't…

Santa Lucia Day 11 Days Late!

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It was a fun morning!

Review of Pursuit of Happyness

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It was a sweet story. I don't think it is any Academy Award winner, but it is poignant. The only think that I would say is that happiness is not in having money, and Chris Gardner is the first to say that in his interviews. So, the movie may have a little bit too much emphasis on the fact that all those stock brokers out on the sidewalk were happy because they were making 80,000 a month (that is the amount the man in the red car was making when Chris Gardner asked him). With all that said, money does provide a roof over our heads and food in our stomach. So, we do need it to survive.

Chris Gardner has said in his interviews that "home" and "happiness" are in the relationships that we have with one another and the time we spend in investment. This was definitely modeled by the character in the movie, but the dialogue made it sound like money was the be all end all. Chris Gardner would not agree. He said in an interview on Oprah something to the effect that he kno…

Laughing Out Loud

Just had to add that I did the whole post below not realizing that I was now going to see the movie:


The PURSUIT OF HAPPYNESS.

Tee Hee!

I am so darn happy.

I have about five minutes before I am out the door to the movie, but I wanted to write a little freewrite. I looked in the mirror a few minutes ago, and I like what I see! I have kept the weight I lost this summer for three months now. That was about ten percent of my body weight. So, I like how I feel in my body. I like how I feel in my clothes. I like how I have been able to stay in shape all through the busy fall.

On top of that, I like who I am around and where I am going. No more crazy, psycho, drama queen ladies in my life anymore, and I am happy that I am being VERY selective about who I allow in my life now. So, I not only like how I look right now, I like who I am hanging with.

I like my kids. They are not big jocks. They aren't really popular. They are just nice PEOPLE. Just today we were all laughing at The Complete Adventures of Curious George, and we were just having a fun time.

I like my husband. He makes me so darn happy. He likes to go to movies and will go with…
Bummer. I did a whole post and lost the thing. I am at 14 posts this month! So, that means I have broken my previous record of most posts in one month! I have more posts this year than any other year.

Today
Slept In
Read Bible
Studied Ephesians
Prayed
Walked with Cathi and Jess (She lives RIGHT on the edge of Peavy Arboreteum trails!)
Talked with Cathi and Jess
Bought Steamer, scones, and cinnamon rolls (for St. Lucia Day) at Jamocha Jo's
Entered more books in my library
Found out my Thumbelina and Little Mermaid books are RARE and worth bucks!
Visited TrapdoorSociety.

Now, I am off to The Pursuit of Happyness with Teala, Shelley, and George.

Bye Bye for Now!

I plan to cry. :)

Day is Done . . .Almost Gone the Sun

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The Runyons, Kinkades, Alexander Boys, and our family all got together for the annual gingerbread party. It worked out really great. It was a little chaotic at first, but we all settled down and got to work. My kids were pretty independent once we got he house together. What a fun and relaxed week I am having! Now, the Alexander boys are staying until Boy's Group, and I am going to have some time to rest and think about dinner later. :)

Today is Gingerbread House Day

Yes, we will make another one of these lovely creations. We have done this since before we went to Malaysia, although the picture of the first one we did was lost forever when someone stole my camera. (Big sigh). I believe that was in 1996, right before we went away to Malaysia!

I don't think we did them in Malaysia though. So, we have done them since 1999! Wow! I will have to find a photo archives of all our attempts at making the perfect house.

We have done it with the K's for the last three years, and that has been lovely. I have invited the Alexander boys, and Dee has invited the Sarah and Emma. So, it should be fun, fun, fun.

I am on the verge of my 100th post after two years of doing this blog. It is a time for celebration (Although I had the other blog that mysteriously disappeared, and I probably had about 50 posts on that one alone)!

I will post pictures of our Gingerbread Creations in a little bit.

Still want to celebrate Santa Lucia Day, but I think it will be on Sa…

Oh, how really FUN!

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I just found a great new website where I can catalog all the books that I have read. I have always wanted to do this, but it would be so laborious! This makes it really easy! You can type in the name of the ISBN, and the information and the picture of the book appear!

It is free for the first 200, but it is only $25 for LIFE. I am there. What a great new tool! Now, if I could only figure out how to do widgets on the sidebar and display my library books!



www.librarything.com

Help anyone?

Looks like it is YUL!

I am great with that. I liked them both. I liked Yul from the beginning, but I also liked Ozzy. So, I am glad for Yul but sad for Ozzy!

Notes on Survivor Jury

Nate - Called Yul The Godfather, called Ozzy The Warrior. Good question. I want Ozzy. Nate is asking why Becky deserves a million dollar over them. Boy, Becky is going to get fried. Poor thing. She is a smart cookie. She really is.

Jenny - What is more important; the physical or the strategic element? Yul thinks strategy is more important. Yul could do it.

Parvati - Becky, convince me that you want to win this. She wanted to win in a way that she is proud.

Jenny - Is that her name? She thought they were flawless. Yul in strategy. Ozzy in challenges. Yul wanted minorities on TV. See Asian American men as they truly are. Good point. Minorities represented on TV. Ozzy wants to change the stereotype of what a Mexican. He thinks he can become a positive role model. WOW! It is going to be so close.

Adam - Thinks they aer painfully boring. Talk trash about the other two. Not about you. Yul didn't work as hard as he could. Becky riding on coat tails. You should be able to ma…

Another Sick Day

I am sick today. Yesterday, I almost fell asleep during White Christmas at the Pix Theatre. It was such a delightful film, but I could tell that I was still sick.

I tried to watch Captain's Courageous with George, but I kept falling asleep. So, I slept from 8:20 - 11:40 last night, and I woke up and couldn't go back to sleep until 4 a.m. So, I used the time to read Hinds' Feet on High Places. How delightful! I haven't read this since I was in college!

Skipped church, and George said that our new pastor said he hopes I feel better. Also, Kim, the children's ministry director, said she was praying. What a great, great church to even care that I was sick! I was gone for a whole summer once because of major surgery, and the only ones who even noticed were the people in my Bible study! I am simply amazed at how caring this church really is. Thank you JESUS for giving me a new, caring church family.

So, while my sweet family was at church, my sweet friend, Teala, cal…

I'm Dreamin' of a . . .

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I had the nicest time at the Pix theatre with Shelley watching a Christmas Classic! For a can of food, I was treated to this on the big screen. I am sold on big screen viewing of old movies. What a great way to spend a Saturday afternoon! :)

UNO by Candlelight

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Last night, the power went out at 7 p.m. We had quite a bad windstorm brewing, and I knew that Alsea had lost power earlier in the day. We had all our Christmas candles throughout the living room. So, I lit just about all of them (19 in all), and the living room/kitchen/dining room was stunningly beautiful. Such a peace set over our family as we talked to candlelight. We figured it wouldn't be long before the lights came back on. We didn't know how long we would be without power. So, we made the best of it. Paul and George were going to sit down to a game of UNO thinking that Michael and I wouldn't be interested. Well, they were wrong. To their utter shock, I sat down with them and played UNO to candlight! We had so much fun! The only difficult thing was the the blue and green cards are very hard to distinguish by candlelight, and one of the candles at the dining room table melted all over my fancy Christmas tablecloth. Other than that, it was a blast. Paul won 2. George w…

Sick Day

Today was supposed to be my last "busy" day before Christmas. It was homeschool, Dial a Book, Good News Christmas Club, and Bible study. Everything was put off because I overslept and felt achy all day. So, it was DAD on DAB today. He took the boys, and I had a couple of hours of total quiet. I have been sort of wasting the day, but that's OK.

I don't know why, but I was just musing over someone's response to me when I told them something deep about how I felt about something. The whole time she just kept denying my feelings. This is someone who is supposed to be getting a degree in helping people. I just don't get it. Thankfully, she is not one of my close friends but one of the people who is in the "vortex." I am so glad to be with people who don't deny who I am made to be anymore. I am so thankful to be in a healthier environment. It is so great.

So, that is all I have to say about that. :)

Rules for Love and Marriage

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I am reading Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom in the chapter on marriage Morrie says, "There are a few rules I know to be true about love and marriage:

If you don't respect the other person,

you're gonna have a lot of trouble.

If you don't know how to compromise,

you're gonna have a lot of trouble.

If you can't talk openly about what goes on between you,

you're gonna have a lot of trouble.

If you don't have a common set of values in life,

you're gonna have a lot of trouble.

I have two reactions to these quotes

1) Praise God that George and I have all four of these things going for us! I respect the socks off of him. Such a man of integrity and compassion. He communicates respect for me in a million ways. We can always come to compromise and consensus. We can talk about anything, and we have never had times of "silence." Helps to both be extroverted feelers! Last but not least, we had the same life goals and values about God, money, family, etc b…

The End of An Era . . .The Beginning of New Things

Sadness. A board I have been a part of for the last seven years is closing its doors. I am sad, but it looks like the community will still continue, only under new ownership and goals. I have accepted it completely though. I am sorry it had to come to this, but I am cooperating with the inevitable today, and I am fine with that.

Today has been lovely and hopeful for me (other than the recent announcement on my board). I woke up on time, and I did a pre Group Power workout of Elliptical for 30 minutes and a post-Group Power workout on the Stair Stepper for another 30 minutes. I really like the routine that Jen does at Group Power too. She is, by far, my favorite instructor. She just has a very pleasant disposition, and she works us hard.

I was thinking the week of celebrating and eating lots of candy and cookies would have left me with some extra weight this week, but I was pleasantly surprised when I saw I was at GOAL WEIGHT! It is the TOP of my goal weight range, but it was GOAL!…

Sunday Morning Coming Down

The wind blows and the rain comes down, and I am happy and content this Sunday Morning. We had a fabulous dinner party with the Z's and Stews, and my only regret is forgetting to take a picture of the festivities. It was perfect with candlelight and good food and conversation. The time together is much too short for my taste though. There is so much to talk about and explore. George really felt like the conversation went so well.

We caught up on the Jesse Tree this morning with the boys. We were three days behind. We did end up being able to do the "Ten Commandments on the Tenth" as Isaac said it should be. So hilarious.

I don't know what I was going to write other than today is peaceful and lovely, and I am content with my life and direction. I only dread having to tell Cheryl that I won't be able to continue with the cooking club in the winter. It just is not working out with our schedule, and I think I have crammed too much into my life with very little w…

Part of My Week

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Monday
Lots of time to just "be" at home rather than out and about. We leisurely went through our history heading toward the fall of Rome in 400 something AD. We also got out our Ring of Fire Rock Cycle Kit! Paul was so excited. I tried it with them four years ago, but he was only in second grade, and it is for 6th - 12th graders (what was I thinking?). It is the perfect age for them this time. Here is a website address for Ring of Fire:

http://www.sciencekitsforkids.com/Level2.htm#The_Rock_Cycle





We decided to gather all the rocks they have collected over the last few year and display them on the Hope Chest after Christmas. Loved the leisurely pace we were afforded with no afternoon commitments. We need more of these.



The rest of the day was relaxing, and I finished reading This Beautiful Mess. Loved this beautiful book, and I love the fact that evangelicals are thinking social justice issues. I love the way he lays that out in Kingdom priorities. I loved the practical example…

Second Freewrite of the Morning

I did a freewrite about two hours ago, but it never posted. Oh bother.

Got up at 4:45 today and went to run on the treadmill and talked to Robin the whole time. Then, it was off to Group Power, and then another thirty on the elliptical. I don't want to go back to Paula's routine for me because I think what I was doing before she gave it to me was much more effective and a harder workout. I do like her running routine for me. So, I will still do that on my off days.

I came home and ran around the neighborhood, praying for each neighbor by name. I felt led to do that this morning as I was praying on the elliptical. It was nice to bless the neighborhood at the beginning of my day.

Came in and Flylady dressed to my shoes, checked email and Trapdoor. Got weird email, but I thnk I clarified in both. Got weird post that I didn't quite understand, but I am OK with that too. Just letting things roll off my back lately.

Still trying to find out if the cooking club is really wh…

Excerpt from This Beautiful Mess by Rick McKinley

I read This Beautiful Mess by Rick McKinley today. It was lovely. I am enjoying his casual writing about the kingdom of God. I think he is on to something.

Loved his thoughts on systematic theology:

I love studying theology, but I've noticed that theology has little tolerance for loose ends. As the study of God, it mostly uses human tools like logic and interpretation and systems to define Him and how He works in our lives. Countless brilliant women and men have written penetrating works that help us think more clearly about God. They give us a rich theological heritage, and I encourage you to read them. But be careful. You can study God expertly in His parts and miss Him entirely in His Being. Sometimes I think today's evangelicals have dissected God, put Him in jars, labeled all His pats, and then breathed a sigh of relief. "Whew. Job done, they gasp. Now we have no more confusion about God. Now we have a God we can market. At least now we can be excruciatingly co…

New Song

I've been grazing in the lush green pastures,
Watching time pass me by,
And I've been wading in the shallow waters,
Where everything is all right-
But today I know that something's different,
Something's disturbing my peace,
Oh, I can feel the changes in the distance,
And hear them calling to me-

The day is here, the time has come
To sing a new song,
It's very clear,
I must move on,
And sing a new song,
It will define who I become,
This new song,
So show me how to sing along
To this new song-

I've been looking in the strangest places,
To find the source of my strength,
And even though the outcome never changes,
Still I search endlessly,
But no more wandering around in circles,
It's time that I cross the see,
Now I'm trading in my cozy corner
For the bigger mystery

Going there means leaving here,
Saying yes means saying no,
Moving on means letting go of what is sure,
For more

Here is my WINNER's Certificate

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I made it as a winner in Nanowrimo!

I wrote my first novel!

I hit 50,000 words at about 5 p.m. tonight.

What a cathartic exercise. My mother always wanted me to be an author.

I really have had this thing percolating in my brain since I was a junior in college 27 years ago. So, it was nice to just set aside the time and do it for posterity's sake.

I feel so free. :)

Party

P A R T Y!
Don't let your pastor know
P A R T Y!
Or he won't let you go
P is for Party
A is for Alright!
R is for Rowdy
T is for Tonight
Y is for You!

YOU KNOW WHAT TO DO!
Paul Christoper's party at 2!

Yes, we are in the thows of a party with ten of my dearest Paul's closest friends.

Love these kids
Love my life
Love my dh who made the cake and did all the shopping and most of the cleaning!

BYE!

41,712 Words Down in my Novel

I am way ahead of the curve in my www.nanowrimo.org writing.

Nanowrimo stands for

National Novel Writing Month.

Every November, an insane number of people write a novel.

Pretty cool. I don't think anyone will ever read mine.

Sunshine on My Shoulder

I woke up at 6 a.m. I was wide awake. When I went to have my quiet time in my happy place, the sun was just rising. GORGEOUS! This is no time to have a quiet time indoors.

Lovely walk as it rose. Had a conversational time with God this morning and talked about many things. Still waiting to hear about some things.

He walks with me and He talks with me
And tells me that I am His own . . .

Sweet communion.

P.S. It was sunny and I popped without knowing that it was sunny. So, I am still holding to my barometric pressue theory. :)

Pressure on my body

Yesterday I POPPED out of bed with no problem. It was sunny, and I went running outside around the Hewlett-Packard Pond (have a picture and will have to find it and post it here) seven times. It was lovely.

This morning, it was overcast and on the verge of a storm, and I couldn't get out of bed to save my life! Is it barometric pressure? Was it something I ate?

So, it is 9:15 am., and I have had a hard time getting moving this morning. I just want to stay at home and hibernate, and I have International Cooking Club and a movie night tonight.

Just wanting to be a homebody today.

That is all I got to say. :)

Call Me Beautiful

I went and saw Carol C. today. She prayed through some things with me like she did four years ago about my friendship that was having difficulty.

There is a new lightness to my spirit as I feel confident in God speaking to me directly about the truth about me and who I am.

So, as I drove home, this is the song that came on the CD, and God spoke to me about the life and future He has for me. Carol assured me that He had a plan in all this happening, and I know that I can rest in that.

Thank you, dear Lord. You call me beautiful

Call Me Beautiful by Ginny Owen

I've been waiting,
For a hero who's brave and strong.
Someone to love me,
Someone to tell me I belong.
So I pretend I'm satisfied,
And I stand watching on the sidelines.
Til You pull me into the light
And say, "It's your turn now, welcome to your life!"

And You call me beautiful,
Say You've loved me all along,
And You've always held the keys to unlock my soul.
You call me beautiful.

There's a smile on my …

Such a nice day

I wonder if anyone every reads these Blog entries anymore? Oh well, no matter. I am just journaling.

I am in a happy place with my lovely children. I am sick. So, we didn't go to International Cooking Club this morning or Scandanavian Dancing this afternoon. Instead, the boys had their usual reading time (Narnia for Paul and Pooh for Michael), Bible (Mark - but Paul is thinking he is not as wild about The Message - He is so much like me about being literal in the translation), and journaling. Then, I read Mara, Daughter of the Nile about a slave girl in Egypt. So far, we like it, and this is the first historical fiction that I have read since last spring!

After this, I decided to plug in The Story of the World by Susan Wise-Bauer in the CD format. I was thinking that it was a bit too elementary for them, and it was also a repeat of what we did last time we went through history, but they LOVED it. We listened to the whole first CD (about 60 minutes), and I had forgotten how…

Lazy Day

It is already 8:39 a.m., and there is no sight of my children. George went to have breakfast with James, and I slept in and didn't go work out this morning. I went to sleep at about 10:15 p.m., but I slept until 7:15 a.m. That is two nights in a row where I slept 9 hours. So, I am figuring that my body is fighting something. So, I am OK with taking the majority of the week off of exercise in order to get better physically.

Paul just stirred, and he went straight to breakfast. Must be the new cereal that I bought yesterday. :)

Yesterday was a good day. I slept in. Finished my Ephesians study. I homeschooled and John came for the day while Barb was somewhere (can't remember where she went though). We went to music, and Michael is done with the banjo and going for the Psaltry, which is a wonderful sounding instrument. I usually run or shop or visit during that hour, but I quietly read Captivating and did my Bird's Eye View study. Captivating is getting a bit better now. I feel…

A Freewrite

My kids are doing a freewrite. So, I am doing one on my old computer, and some of the letters stick! So, I am not correcting this thing. (Warning: The "S" sticks a ton!)

This morning I went to Group Power, and it was great with Angie. I like her. She is very positive. After this, I went to a consultation with a trainer at the club, and she set me up on a program. She suggested that I not continue with group power and that I would get a better workout using her strength training program. So, I will try it for three weeks.

She also suggested that I run three days a week. I will also take her running class to help improve my running technique. It is 40 dollars, but that isn't bad for 8 weeks of classes. My goal is to lose fat in my arms and my stomach and above my hips in the back.

Well, the timer went off, and they are reading their freewrites to one another. They love freewrites now. Go figure.

Bye!

Rain Must Fall

My kids are doing spelling and math right now. So, I am going to set my timer and do a freewrite for myself.

Yesterday, I sprang out of bed with such courage and optimism. I went to my "happy place" chair and spent three glorious hours in prayer and Scriptures. Such a great morning. We had already gone to our lovely church the night before. (I love the cozy feel of the Saturday night service, and we got to meet Jamie, the AWESOME Youth Leader.) So, I had the whole day until practice at 7 p.m.

So, when George brought the kids to Youth Sunday School, he dropped me off at Timberhill, and I worked out to worship songs, classic music, and Nora Jones on the elliptical and treadmill and read about the beginning life of Solomon. What a great workout. I love the club!

George picked me up about 1 1/2 hours later when he picked up the kids, and we all brought back books to the library and went shopping together. I love my family. Nothing give me more pleasure to just hang out with them do…

The Famous Margarita!

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Chuey's for Tex-Mex and Margarita!

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Susan & I at Mt. Bonnell on the Colorado River

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The Top of Mt. Bonnell in Austin Texas

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Susan and I at Mozart's on Town Lake!

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Andree Seu Article on Forgiveness

The thing we don't do
Forgiveness is hard work Andrée Seu
Forgiving is the hardest thing you will ever do. That's why most people don't do it. We talk about it, cheer for it, preach on it, and are sure we've practiced it. But mostly the illusion of having forgiven is that the passage of time dulls memory. The ruse will come to light with hair-trigger vengeance when fresh offense hurls in to empty out the gunnysack of half-digested grievances.
I asked a few people if they'd ever forgiven anyone, and what it felt like. They gave me answers so pious I knew they'd never done it. I am at the present moment in the maw of temptation, and I can tell you there is nothing exalted about this feeling, this one-two punch to the gut that comes when you even contemplate forgiving, which is as far as I've come.
At first I decided I would forgive the person—and never speak to him again. This felt pretty good, but I saw the dissimulation in it at once. I alternately toyed with …

Life's Simple Pleasures are the Best

Life's Simple Pleasures are the Best!

I posted in response to Susan's post about how we seek joy, and I thought I would post here what I posted:

You posted after I had gone to bed on Friday with a "full cup of joy." So, I was going to have a similar question like "What fills your cup?"

Actually, it was a "joy full" week in general. As I look at my At a Glance Day Planner (By the way, this is my new one, and I LOVE it - July to July with tabs for the months and a month and weekly calendar and lots of "Quick Note" space for taking notes - but I digress . . .constantly) I see the theme for joy is:

People . . . While people can bring great pain, they also bring great joy; and I am learning to be very selective with the people.

(Positive people are especially nice . . .this is a sub-theme for me because positivity in people is really good too. NOT that we can't have struggles and pain, but I do not find joy in being around people that are nega…

Please Only You

So here I go again, again
I let myself get spread so thin
But I can see right through my skin
And I don't like what I'm finding in my heart

So many different voices call
And I try hard to please them all
I run in circles 'til I fall
So I'm falling on my knees and praying

Please, Please, Please only You, only You
Please, Please, Please take my heart, and make it true
Let everything I say and everything I do
Please, please only you
Please only you

For every moment of my time
For every thought that fills my mind
For every melody and rhyme
This is the prayer that I'll be praying

Please, Please, Please only You, only You
Please, Please, Please take my heart, and make it true
Let everything I say and everything I do

This is what it means to be
The reason why I live and breathe
To know that I am totally existing for Your pleasure
I'm still learning but I know
As this becomes my only goal
The more I find my heart and soul is filled up with joy when I

I please only you
I please only you
Please onl…

My Place of Abundance

I am springing out of bed with new life and vigor. I am so happy to be alive today!

Some reports are in order.

Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller

I have taken foray into the postmodern church mindset and read Blue Like Jazz. I loved it, and I can't wait to talk to people about it. What I liked most was his openness to admit that we Christians cannot just jump into the hip pocket of the Republican party and call Bush Jesus because he is not. I really like George Bush. I voted for him. I believe he is a born-again believer in Jesus Christ. All that said, he ain't Jesus, and if another believer wants to vote for the democratic candidate, I will not condemn that person's spirituality.

I also really like his emphasis on Christian spirituality and not on Christianity. I loved the confessional at Reed College where the Christians confessed to the students the sins of Christianity. It moved people so terribly. What a beautiful thing.

This is recommended reading for all Christian…

The Conclusion of the Dale Carnegie Course

I have just completed 12 weeks of the Dale Carnegie Training: Effective Communication and Human Relations. What a time. I feel like it was a fabulous class for me on a personal level that will help me for the rest of the life. I was nominated twice and won one award, but the most rewarding thing that happened to me during the time was what happened on the 11th week of the class. Here is what I posted about it on another website:

We had to give a talk on someone who has really inspired us. We practice with our neighbor before we give it to the whole class, and my neighbor, Anthony, would not share his. I had seen he had written it out on a piece of paper, and I asked him, "Do you usually write them out?" He replied, "Not usually, but this one is really important."

Later, as we were volunteering to go, I volunteered to go after him, and when I went to sit next to him in the front "waiting" chairs he said, "Oh, my plan is working out perfectly!" What…

It is well with my soul.

I am sitting out on our front driveway in one of our camp chairs on a beautiful fall 80 degree day. How perfect is that. The wind is blowing in such a gentle way, and we are having a neighborhood garage sale. I haven't had one in 25 years since I had a sale to sell stuff to raise money for the trip to Glen Eyrie in Colorago Springs. Amazing.

I am in such a good place. Life is so grand.

I had a two and a half hour talk with Kim S. about so many things that are just so on my heart. I think I have found a soul mate. Kim is the Children's Ministry director at my new church, but she also has a real heart for showing love and kindness to Internationals. She is teamed up with all these people like Beth A. It is so encouraging. God is so awesome. I had no idea that all of this was going on in our city. I have been so clueless.

Pinch me please.

I forgot to write about Anthony. I will do it in another post. It was such a positive thing. I am so blessed these days.

So, peaceful but a heavy heart

I am sitting here on a Monday where all I had to do is homeschool this morning. So, I have a very free day and decided to fast and pray from Lunch today to dinner tomorrow for the church that I left. I heard some very disturbing things on Friday, and I was even more disturbed when I talked on Saturday with the perpetrator of the disturbing things. It made me mad to sad. Now, I am just grieving in my heart. I don't want to give up hope for this church that I loved for so many years. You are calling me to pray.

BUT, there is so much hope about the future in my new church!

Carrie, the Family Pastor, is going to the Peacemaker Conference and wants to talk about discipleship.

Roxanne, women's leadership person, wants to meet to talk more about the leadership course she wants to develop.

Vicki, the Women's ministry director, and I had lunch and she talked about authenticity, prayer, waiting on God and not moving ahead before you know it is what he wants you to do, becoming a M…