Wednesday, February 28, 2007

tech support

let me preface this by saying that i quite love my new laptop! vista has lots of fun things, and is pretty and girl friendly. but it's a little pissy, if i'm honest. i've already had to call tech support twice...fortunately, they are patient and helpful. thank you, dell! curtis reminds me that as microsoft debugs stuff and updates become available, it will be less and less pissy. frankly, i can wait! they already had a patch to fix a driver problem i had, so ... hooray!

also new, i am walking my friends dog! at least for lent, maybe forever! :) yesterday was my first day, and figuring out the harness was tricky, especially since bella (the dog) was so excited she tried to 'help'. i'm sure this actually does help my friend, who knows what she's doing, but bella and i wound up in quite a tangle! we got there eventually, and now i am out the door for day two of dog walking!

Monday, February 26, 2007



patience is a virtue

curtis and i are taking turns running errands today - the house is not to be left alone. usually on his day off, we take pleasure in the mundane-ness of running around together. we catch up, hold hands, grab lunch and usually wind up buying a few groceries at target. but not today. today, one of us has to be home to answer the door. today, OUR NEW LAPTOP IS COMING!

Thursday, February 22, 2007

dear ol' dad

my dad began a long deserved 3 month sabbatical this week, and i gave him the web address for this blog. i figured he would have the time on his hands to browse it, and it would be another way for us to connect. happy day! but then i realized, as i mentioned in a previous post, that my DAD will be reading this. yes, i already edit myself for the viewing DAD! i grew up a 'daddy's-little-girl'...

so dad, if you ever read anything here that causes you concern, just ignore it. :)

funny boy!

so, at encounter last night, my friend josh, in discussing how we ought to greet one another during lent, said... "top o' the lent to ya!" HILARIOUS!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

ash wednesday

happy lent! hmm... merry lent? a good lent to you? is there a set form of address for this occasion? anyone? oh, well. however you slice it, today is the first day of lent...and i have settled upon my lenten discipline. for a minute there, i considered giving up doing the laundry, but... well, my better judgement prevailed. i am going to fast & pray over the lunch hour. that is going to be hard! fortunately, sunday's don't count in the 40 days, so i will get to have a family lunch (how traditional of me!) sundays. i will let you know how it goes! are any of you lenting anything?
it's not too late to find a way to participate in lent - God is not a cosmic score keeper...he just wants your heart. There are these stunning verses in isaiah 65 - "The Lord says, “I was ready to respond, but no one asked for help. I was ready to be found, but no one was looking for me. I said, ‘Here I am, here I am!’ to a nation that did not call on my name. All day long I opened my arms to a rebellious people. But they follow their own evil paths and their own crooked schemes." shocking - the picture of God, waving his arms around like a kid, 'here i am! here i am!', trying to get our attention. i love it when scripture shakes God out of my carefully crafted box. i am too quick to sanitize him...

in other news, it's finally warming up around here! i hear birds chirpping and see squirrels frolicking! hooray! i can finally air out my house and go for a walk without cursing with every step. (for my canadian readers out there, we are going on 20 C all week! hooray! and this is just the baby steps of spring!)

we also bought a laptop yesterday! my dream realized! curtis says it's "ours" and i say it's MINE!! HA HA HA! but dell was having a 25% off presidents sale, and when do you ever get 250$ off a brand new computer? never! so, we bit the bullet, and it should arrive soon! hooray! i am very excited.

also! we are doing this
online marriage counselling through eharmony that my mom gave us to use (we are her guinea pigs before she uses the program at the college where she works with married students), and it is surprisingly helpful! we don't have vast marriage "issues", and i didn't know if we'd get anything out of it, but we have - much to our surprise and pleasure! if you are married and interested in having "more", i definitely recommend it.

hmmm. i think that's all. merry lent ... or whatever... to you!

Monday, February 19, 2007

a hodge podge...

i hate to be yet another blogger with an opinion about britney spears, but here i am. i was never a fan, never thought she was amazing or anything, and over time i have developed a veiw of her that includes words like: skanky, mindless, dumb, trashy, etc. but over the weekend, what with the shaving of the head, i have had to revise that. taking a step back, i have come to think she is a lost girl - with no accountability, no one who tells her the real truth, and no one to trust. i think she must be very lonely, and she has my sympathy. so do her sons. living a life with no meaning or value beyond the next paparazzi picture must be completely debilitating. i still don't think she's particularily talented or amazing, but i am beginning to feel some sympathy.


2 days til lent starts, and i am still torn. i am considering...

a) giving up fiction reading (a huge, huge sacrifice)

b) fasting over lunches & praying for God's direction on the future of my life (i worry about my motives here...i am a murky soul, and i don't want to use lent as a diet, but on the other hand, i really do need a God given vision for my future. sigh)

c) giving up wine (not as much of a sacrifice, really. maybe it's a copout?)

sigh.... i don't know. any opinions?

Thursday, February 15, 2007


february 21 is the beginning of lent this year. i am not, and haven't ever been, catholic, and so lent was a foreign and mysterious thing to me until fairly recently in my adult life. basically, it is the 40 days leading up to easter that followers of Jesus use to prepare our hearts to mark his death and resurrection. traditionally, this is done by giving up something, with every sunday as a 'free' day (indulge to your hearts content.) sadly, for many christians, whatever their church tradition, lent is a willpower boost to losing 10 lbs (by giving up, say, chocolate or bread), which really removes any of the original intent and meaning from the discipline. as i have begun the practice of lent in the last 6 or 7 years, i have found my heart equally opened to God by what i add, as well as what i take away. for example, adding a practice of prayer or reading, or the much harder discipline of kindness or love. this year, as the lenten season approaches, i find myself very much needing to be drawn into the heart of God, and have spent a lot of time thinking about what i am going to add or subtract to my life next week. i have a couple of ideas...

i don't know if you celebrate lent, but if you choose to, i hope that you find your heart drawn to God's heart, and come to easter ready to encounter Jesus.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

complicated woman

my mother once told me that i was "the shallowest deep person" she knows...and she meant it as a compliment. she was probably right - for every cause, idea or belief i am passionate about, there is a favorite lipstick, sparkly top, or.... pair of shoes. i would just like to say that she is also a contributing factor, because look at what she sent me in the mail this week!

and they fit like a dream!! so comfortable! and although she didn't know it when she bought them, they are from the same company that made my very favorite shoe of all time (but i can't show you a picture of them today, since i lent them out to a friend to wear...they are such fabulous shoes that they need to fulfill their shoe destiny by being worn out so people can gasp at their beauty. i will post a pic when i get them returned!) do i not have the coolest mom ever!?

to be fair, though, i must say that she is the biggest contributor to both ends of my spectrum - because all of the deepest workings of my heart are processed with her as well. cheers to you, mom. i love you.

Monday, February 12, 2007

true beauty

i was reading 'newsweek' online over the weekend, and stumbled upon a link to this video. i was astonished - and it made me think again about our society's obsession with beauty and celebrity. it's definitely worth the 45 seconds of your time. but i'd be willing to bet you'll watch it more than once.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

is that you?

andrew? is that you?

Friday, February 09, 2007

state of the union

"oh wow!"

those were the words out of my husbands mouth last night, on seeing the msn headline about anna nicole smith's death. until that moment, i honestly didn't even know that he knew who she was. he barely knows who britney spears is. but there it was.... "oh wow". today there are no less than 8 headlines on that refer to her life and death - the most honest one being "what made us care about anna nicole smith". not that we shouldn't care about people, because we should. but why do people like curtis know who she is? what does it say about our cultural consciousness that she rates top billing over the war, or over....

homeless hospital patients being dumped out of van onto skid row. welcome to hollywood, indeed. in the glorious city of los angelos, a DOZEN - that is TWELVE - hospitals are under investigation for taking their homeless patients and literally throwing them out of vans into alleyways...not taking them to shelters or hospices, but leaving them in their gowns and socks in the worst parts of town, then racing off. really? this is what humanity has come down to? there isn't enough money in the gigantic casino that is the modern american hospital to treat the impoverished with dignity?

i find it sad, these two news items. sad for anna nicole's baby girl, who will grow up with controversy in a lonely house and a whispering city. and my hearts breaks for the inhumanizing humiliation of those too poor to "deserve" help. but most of all, it makes me sad to think that this is where we have landed...where we have ended up. people consumed with decadence and unwilling to help our fellow man - who we could just as easily be, but for the grace of God. i am just a guilty - i lap up the headlines in the kroger checkout aisle, and avoid eye contact with the man on the corner asking for "any help, God bless". and shame on me. i am not capable of changing a nation. but i am capable of changing myself. and perhaps the small ripple of that will affect someone around me, who can -in turn - affect someone else. this is not a new theory, i know...but it's about time it became more than a theory. it's about time it got put into practice. to live generously, love lavishly, give without expecting something back, love those who don't love you, walk with grace through the oceans of hurting people. it seems to me that Someone suggested living like this a long, long time ago. it's about time i got started.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

dear anonymous...

hello, all you anonymous commenters! since my reflections on never knowing who is reading this, i've gotten a small influx of comments from you...and "hooray" i say to that! the most recent one said, "i read your blog..who am i??" well, that's an excellent question.

i think i can safely rule out prince william, and maybe even harry (although he seems much more the type to randomly cruise the blogosphere). i am also ruling out katie holmes (too brainwashed), paris hilton (too self-involved) and paula abdul (too high/drunk/mentally unstable). i do not think you are my mother (too busy) or my father (incapable of online navigation).

i have high hopes that you might be someone i actually would love to get an email old friend rarely heard from, perhaps. someone who i would be pleasantly surprised to know is "out there"...

so, here is my best, educated guess. (drumroll, please...) j.k rowling. am i right?? did i get it?? i know you've got a lot of time on your hands, what with finishing 'deathly hallows'...will you send me a free copy since i guessed it was you?? hooray!

Saturday, February 03, 2007

like the abominable snow man

something happened this morning - something every parent hears about, but usually chalks up to urban legend, wishful thinking, or someone else's perfect parenting. my meg begged me to let her clean the toilets. all of them. begged. and celebrated when i told her "yes". i'm not sure why this constitutes a privilege, but i'm going with it! when she was done, she asked me if i would "please!" not clean the bathrooms unless she was home from school, and that she couldn't wait to turn 10, when the bathrooms officially become her job. am i dreaming? am i hallucinating? i don't know for sure...all i know is that i am truly, deeply grateful.

Friday, February 02, 2007

to tell my daughter

i want to tell my daughter
that this world does not seem made for sparklers.

but rather
for smooth bulbs in sockets
with carefully measured watts & volts,
that turn on and off at appropriate times

here the unpredictable spark
unreliable heat
flashing beauty
are risky -
pinched carefully from the end
and set down with quiet relief
when sparks die

no, it is not made for them
but it needs them.

without sparklers there would be no
spinning or laughter
no arms swooped in langorous, wide circles
trailing ribbons of smoke
in curlicues
no naked feet in night damp'd dew
no clinging grass on nightgown hems

don't be afraid to let your spark fly
you will be a flashing
beautiful risk
that someone can take

and they will need you

Thursday, February 01, 2007

deja vu all over again

north carolina snow day #2!

this morning, the snow is more reminicent of home - a grey sky with fat flakes drifting slowly that look like they are going to fall all day. the girls are home (again) and going out to play in the snow (again) ... and i must admit that although i never enjoyed the cold once i got into the double digits, i have fond fond childhood memories of playing in the snow until it got dark enough for the street lights to come on (roughly 4:14pm in the dead of winter), watching flakes the size of pennies float through the shafts of orange light...if you stood still under them, looking up, you were gradually transported into space - with stars passing on either side of you as you traveled the galaxy. there were no cars on the dark, snowy streets, and it was a childs kingdom to rule. warm light spilled from windows, foggy breath making the scarf around your chin damp, and air so still you could hear a sound for blocks.

i don't want to go back - to live where i felt cold all the time - but i am glad that my girls will have something of the memory i do. as long as they are back at school tomorrow.