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Showing posts from June, 2013

Saturday Seventeen Freewrite

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There's a wonder and wildness to life
And freedom for those who obey

The words to that Michael Card song keep flowing through my brain this morning. I cannot get them out of my head. It is probably my favorite song in the whole world: Joy in the Journey. Since my name means "Song of Joy," it is an appropriate favorite song, I think.

Maybe I will just try to recall the words here. Cannot guarantee the accuracy and do not want to look it up and interfere with my fingers continuing to type across the page:

There is a joy in the journey
And a love that we spread on the way
There is a wonder and wildness to life
And freedom for those who obey

Forget not the hope that's before you
And never stop counting the cost

Something about eternity stranded in time but I cannot remember the rest of the words. It has been so long since I last listened to it. I will put it on my iPod since I have the CD!

There is a joy in my heart this morning. Maybe I should change the name of my blog to Joy in …

Friday Freewrite Fifteen

I know I said I wasn't going to freewite today, but it is FRIDAY by golly, and what is a Friday without a Friday Freewrite Fifteen. I need to do it for no other reason that alliteration is my favorite thing to do with words. :)
I also like to record when I get one of those Holy Spirit waves coming over me, and I just had one. I am in the "Passion" of the Christ in Messiah right now meditating on "Behold the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world," and I just had to pause. I cannot write my "mind meditation" (for my headier readers who might want to have more of a background of the verse - I like them by the way. I am by no means a "heady" person, but I do think that knowing the context of an isolated verse brings richness to my heart and life). Just reading about John the Baptist announcing Jesus that way to all who would hear.  He was that "voice crying in the wilderness" that said to "prepare the way of the Lord.&quo…

Banks to Vernonia Bike Date Night

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I won't freewrite, but I will just post some pictures and commentary on our wonderful 30 mile "bike date" through the beautiful farmland and forest between Banks and Vernonia. It is a slight grade for about four miles. Then, it is the grade you see here for another seven miles. Then, you go up the "Hilltop" switchbacks. The sign even says to walk your bike up these, but George did not. I would have not done it either, but I did not gear down quickly enough before the first switch back and found myself stuck in the 3-5 gear (should be 1-1)!  So, I gladly walked up and almost went as fast as George riding in that lowest gear. :)

At about 11.5 miles, you start going on a low grade downhill. We looked at our watch and realized that if we did the full 21 miles, we were not going to make it back to the parking lot before it closed at 9 pm. If we had started just 1/2 hour earlier, we would have made it, but we didn't know that the parking lot closed at that time un…

Today's Writing Place

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I did a thirteen minute freewrite, but this wireless pooped out on me, and I lost everything that I just wrote.

No matter. I am flex!

Here is my writing location:


Wednesday Freewrite

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I really want to get to writing but I will warm up my fingers with a ten minute freewrite, just for fun.

It has been a more social visiting week up in Newberg/Hillsboro. We got here on Monday morning, and it was raining so I went to Starbuck's right near George's work and actually ordered a COFFEE latte. If you know me, I kinda' detest coffee (love the smell), but for some weird reason I wanted to see what all the fuss was about. So, I ordered one.


Not exactly my favorite, but it did cause me to sip very slowly. The only other time I have actually downed a WHOLE cup of coffee was when I did the Beaver Freezer Triathlon in 2011, and the experts said it would give me a KICK. It did. I won first place in my age division for my first (and last) triathlon. YAY! (Probably more than just the coffee, but I digress).

I finished a post I had started the day before (Malachi 3:1-3 on the refiner's fire and purifying the sons of Levi). Then, I packed up and found a wonderful spot at t…

40. The Reading Promise: My Father and the Books We Shared by Alice Ozma

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My friend, Terri, recommended this heartwarming book. I listened to the audiobook version, and the narrators were excellent. Who wouldn't love a book about a father instilling a love for literature in the heart of his daughter by a nightly reading "streak" that lasted 9 years? 

Almost halfway through the book, I realized that the author was also the narrator. She was great! What a talented young woman and also an endearing story about a girl and her single-parent dad. 

My husband and I always joke that the one thing that we did "right" as parents was that we read aloud to them long after the "standard" time. We think that my oldest was about 17 or 18 and youngest 14 or 15 when we quit (mainly because they started going to bed WAY later than us!). 

As a result of reading this book, last night we had a fond time remembering those mornings with me (always looking to see if I could make it through the WHOLE book without crying - never) and evenings with dad …

39. Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin

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"To be happy at home is the ultimate result of all ambition,  the end to which every enterprise and labour tends,  and of which every desire prompts the prosecution."
Johnson: Rambler #68 (November 10, 1750)
I wrote my thoughts on this book yesterday in a freewrite, but in case you do not read them (who would?), this is what I said:


I am listening to this book called Happier at Home by a woman who apparently wrote another book called The Happiness Project. I only came upon it because I was looking for a book by Samuel Johnson in my library, and since she read Samuel Johnson and has it as part of her subtitle, this book popped up. I am reading the sequel, but it is speaking to me. Mostly confirming what I have already discovered on my own.  I think this lady and I are a lot alike. So, that is fun.She was just talking about routines as I was making my chai tea which is one of my routines! I make it and usually listen to a book as I make it. Then I sit down to write for the whole mo…

Thursday Thirteen Freewrite

Technically, I am on vacation this whole week even though we needed to come back in order for Paul to get his wisdom teeth out. But I feel like writing today. "Those who walk in darkness have seen a great light" echoes through my heart this morning, and I feel like doing some "Messiah Musings" to finish up the year on my Bible Book Club Blog. My back is sort of wonky. So, I am not using this week off to do any lifting or heavy exercises. Just walking.

I am listening to this book called Happier at Home by a woman who apparently wrote another book called The Happiness Project. I only came upon it because I was looking for a book by Samuel Johnson in my library, and since she read Samuel Johnson and has it as part of her subtitle, this book popped up. 

I am reading the sequel, but it is speaking to me. Mostly confirming what I have already discovered on my own.  I think this lady and I are a lot alike. So, that is fun.

She was just talking about routines as I was making …

Freewrite Fifteen on a Wednesday Morning

I am not doing writing for Messiah Meditations until I get the 1.2 pounds that I am over what I say I will be if I spend time doing cerebral and sedentary things. So, I puttered quite a bit this morning, but I cannot believe it is still morning! I straightened up the whole house and then the cleaners came and my house is spotless. Michael started the laundry.

I will stand and watch my Handel videos for my research for writing my book on Handel's Messiah Meditations. New project but it is at the tail end of the BBC journey, but I am giving myself until the end of the year to complete it since it will be fun to drag it out until Christmas. :) The pre-research reading and watching has been great too. I am learning quite a bit about Handel.

My back muscles are really tight (not out) on my left side from between the shoulder blades to the mid back. I think it was from a fall on the snow on Saturday.  Totally worth it. I moved my preventative appointment for next week up to tomorrow. I …

38. Call the Midwife: A Memoir of Birth, Joy, and Hard Times by Jennifer Worth

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I became interested in this book because I love the PBS Series, and I was NOT disappointed! I started it on my vacation and finished it less than 24 hours later, devouring every page.

Worth is a master storyteller and draws you right into the drama of everyday life in the East End of London in the 1950's. 

I must caution you though: It is not for the faint-at-heart. Her descriptions are pretty graphic, especially when she tells the story of "Mary" and prostitution on Cable Street. It moved me to compassion for those who get caught up with any kind of sex trade trafficking!

I did love reading the stories about the sisters at Nonnatus House, especially Sister Monica Joan. I laughed out loud on several occasions (really bad when you are in one room in a rental forest cabin with your family when they are trying to sleep).

For the most part, I think PBS has been really true to the most of the stories in the book with minor changes. One thing the PBS series has not yet touched…

37. Watership Down by Richard Adams

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I feel like the narrator, Ralph Cosham, and I are old friends, as he has narrated several books I have read. He is an excellent reader, doing all the different voices for the characters in this book.

This is an adventure novel. Some people think it is allegorical, but the author emphasizes that it is not a statement about anything other than a story he made for his children while traveling. He is obviously a well-read person who weaves in great quotes from literature into the beginning of each chapter. Loved that the last one had a Jane Austen quote!

We have a population explosion of rabbits in my neighborhood this spring. They are everywhere in our yard. I will never look at rabbits the same way again!

Thursday Thirteen Freewrite

I have not done one of these in the longest time. I have been working so diligently on finishing up the Bible Book Club. Actually, I reached the end of Revelation last Friday! YAY! I just had to edit old posts from Colossians on and was not going to schedule the repost until closer to the date they actually post; but I decided it would save me more time if I could just edit and repost at the same time. So, I am done with that. But then I realized in all the finishing, that I had skipped 3 John altogether! Such a small book, but it is significant because the first inductive study I ever did (July 1977) was on 3 John! (I wanted a short book to start with!).  How appropriate that I would end my study through Scripture where I started! I do believe that is a GOD thing, and I have been looking for that 1977 study. I saved it for years, and I am sure it is somewhere in all my papers. If I find it, I will take a picture and put it in the post. LOL! 

Anyway, I plan on pushing the button for 3 …

BHAG #2 COMPLETE: Bible Book Club

YAY! My journey of blogging through the Bible is complete.

Doing the happy dance!!! Two BHAGS complete in one week!

I am undone!

(Just need to edit a few old posts and repost them to be TOTALLY complete, and I am waiting until June 16 when it will exactly 2000 since I started writing. Such number nerd.)


BBC BHAG COMPLETION APPROACHING!!!

I have 27 verses left! (Revelation 21)

Revelation 8 went lickety split this Wednesday morning (5:30 - 6:45 am)! But Dr. Wilbur M. Smith wrote: “It is probable that, apart from the exact identification of Babylon in Revelation 17 and 18, the meaning of the two judgments in this chapter represents the most difficult major problem in the Revelation” (Wycliffe Bible Commentary,p. 1509). 

Oh joy! But I see the finish line. On June 15, 2013, it will be 2000 days since the inauguration of the Bible Book Club and despite the challenge of Revelation (and especially chapter 7, I am pressing on!!!!

Update: Finished it with no problem. People are praying!
Update: Divine wrath is hard to swallow (Revelation 16)
Update: Revelation 20 was a killer with the whole pre-post-a- millennial stuff!!

36. Selected Essays from the "Rambler", "Adventurer" and "Idler" by Samuel Johnson

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I am so glad I let Samuel Johnson have the last word on this long classics journey! (See previous post)

"That the mind of man is never satisfied with the objects immediately before it, but it always breaking away from the present moment, and losing itself in schemes of future felicity; and that we forget the proper use of the time now in our power . . ." (No. 2)

"To a community, sedition is a fever, corruption a gangrene, and idleness an atrophy."  

"In the bottle discontent seeks for comfort, cowardice for courage, and bashfulness for confidence." 

Wise words from a very wise man. This is NO JOKE, the whole time I was reading his essays, I kept on thinking of the Greek word for wisdom, sophron, to describe Samuel Johnson, and low and behold, one of the last essays I read was on prudence where the character's name is SOPHRON! 

Johnson is well worth reading!

I had to giggle at this particular review of Johnson on Amazon:

5.0 out of 5 starsBeef Up Your English

BHAG COMPLETE: 287 Classics in 555 Weeks

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BIG HAIRY AUDACIOUS GOAL COMPLETE!!!!
Started: Wednesday, October 16, 2002 
Completed: Tuesday, June 4, 2013 
at 3:33 PM.

287 books in 3885 days or  10 years, 7 months, 20 days or . . .  555 weeks93,240 hours5,594,400 minutes335,664,000 secondsHow appropriate to start and end this journey with the Invitation to the Classics List(85 books).
In between, I read The Well-Educated Mind(154 books) and The Book of Great Books: A Guide to 100 World Classics(104 books if you count sequels and trilogies). Minus the overlap on each list that is 287 
books! (press links to see the lists)
MY STORY

My love for classical literature came very late in life! It was 1996, and I happened by a PBS performance of a musical: Les Miserables. I was enthralled and told my mother-in-law how much it moved me. She went back to her bedroom and returned with the book, Les Miserables, in a thick paperback. I couldn't put it down. I wept through the last fifteen pages in June of 1996 and did not want it to end. On my birth…

Classics Journey

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Classics Journey, a set on Flickr.

BHAGs Almost Finished!!!!

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Invitation to the Classics:Selected Essays of Samuel Johnson - 25 pages left! Bible Book Club: 7.5 chapters in Revelation left (1/2 of 7; 8-9; 14-16; 20-21)!  

Evaluation Effectiveness

Reflection on the "Well Balance" helped me realign some priorities in the last 24 hours. I am not OCD, but sometimes I can get fixated on closure. I was fixated on closure for the BBC and Invitation to the Classics. My back went wonky because of me being SEDENTARY and CEREBRAL (as George calls it). I was not getting up and doing my walks and back exercises. This is partly because I cannot do that when I am at the Hillsboro Library without the risk of getting my computer stolen and looking like a fool doing exercises on the floor there (must do them at 5:30 am before George and I leave for the commute).

Also, I broke my rule of not posting if I was over a certain weight.  It took watching Hamlet telling Ophelia to "Get thee to a nunnery" to remind me of the last time I was in a nunnery (June 6-8, 2012) and what You specifically told me there about "Walking for the World and Weight Loss." As I reviewed my weight at its lowest on April 18, 2013 I realized it…