Monday, May 13, 2013
And you know my new job? It kind of interferes with my life. Besides working, here's what I been doing since I last talked to you:
I washed and dried my family's sheets 2 times and hung them on the line to make them smell good. I attended 1 going-away party, 1 graduation party, 1 baby shower, 1 band concert, 1 worship concert, 1 night of work on a Friday eve, 1 track banquet (I skipped the 2nd one), 2 track meets, 2 connection groups, 3 staff meetings, 3 lunch meetings (one at El Azteca), and visited Sam's club too many times to mention. I made 3 special trips to HyVee to buy Kale for my husband, 12 cupcakes to celebrate the now-ignored May Day, and fed 16 extra people (at different times--not including my family) at my house. I produced no-bakes in 15 minutes for an event I had to leave for in 30, sewed 2 puppy towels, ironed 1 shirt for my son, and ran 7 very fast miles with my long-legged daughter. I sent a package to my mother-in-law, a package to my finals-taking daughter and a package to someone unknown (for Luke). I rode around a local lake for 2 long hours with some energetic 9 year old boys for the local Christian school bike-a-thon and the day after that I earned my yellow belt in boot camp, even though my legs were pretty sore. I helped create 1 video (on a bad hair day) to highlight women's ministry and I recruited 12 volunteers for the welcome team at church. I made bone broth in my crock pot. I made yogurt in my crock pot. And one day, I put a roast in my crock pot, but forgot to plug it in--that means big disappointment after being gone for 10 hours. I washed a neighbor's dishes, ate a neighbor's salad, and paid a neighbor big bucks for the damage to their car (It was not my fault. Someone else, whose name rhymes with roll, backed into them). I bought 2 tank tops, 2 t-shirts, and a pair of shorts in order to usher in summer (since we skipped spring) and I invited 20 people and millions of children to my house for a work brunch next week. That means I need to plant 3 flower beds and 2 flower pots, replace 2 dead bushes and remove 5 piles of dog poop from the sidewalk before they arrive. In the remaining days of the month, I still need to attend 1 member's banquet, 1 coffee date, 3 discipling dates, 2 grad parties, 1 band concert, 1 bridal shower, 1 American citizenship celebration, and 1 fund-raising carwash for the kids. I also have 1 potluck at my house (not to be confused with the aforementioned brunch) in 8 days, 1 storytelling time for Sunday, and 1 fine day of moving my college girl back home. Oh, and Cole wants me to make curtains for his tree house when I have time.
One of these days (not in May), I will again have time to produce inspiration and wit which I will post on this here blog. But now, I must retire so I can get my 5 hours of beauty sleep.
And then I will make curtains.
Sunday, April 28, 2013
Neo is always very sad when he has to take a shower.
Neo hates showers.
Neo pretty much hates water in general...especially if it is soapy and spraying directly on his back.
Thanks for your attention to this matter.
Tuesday, April 23, 2013
I feel guilty about a lot of things. I feel guilty that I don’t use cloth grocery bags even though I have a thousand of them stuffed in the back of my car. In fact, I have so many of them back there that when the little guy from Fareway helps me carry out my massive amount of items, he has to move the cloth bags to fit all the plastic, earth-killing, pet-suffocating ones in. Now, don’t get me wrong, I am not really the environmentalist, tree-hugging sort, and I only drive an electric car because my husband makes me. And sometimes, I drive it too fast and the little green ball (that tells me when I am being the most efficient with my battery life) turns yellow. Don’t tell Brent. But I do like pets and I would be so sad if my cat decided to commit suicide by using a grocery bag that I brought home. I’m not sure why I can’t remember to use the re-usable bags. Maybe it has something to do with being old now.
While we are on the subject of pets, I feel guilty that my dog now weighs 138.8 pounds and has asthma because of his girth. Last summer, we put him on a diet and he got down to a svelte 125 pounds and was breathing freely. I was nervous about taking him to the vet last week because of his obesity. This might have something to do with the last time I took him to the vet. You can read about that here.
I feel guilty about being addicted to Diet Coke. I’m not sure why I like it so much, but it makes me feel happy. especially if it’s fountain pop and has really good pellet ice (Sonic!). Diet Coke pretty much goes against every thing I believe in—like eating healthy and trying to avoid foods containing ingredients I can’t pronounce. I think the whole addiction thing started when I had four kids six and under and nothing to look forward to each day—except pop. (I exaggerate here. I’m sure my children and I had many lovely days together at home. The entire decade of the 1990’s is a little blurry). Anyway, now I’m addicted and I try to act like I’m not even though all the waiters at El Azteca greet me with “Diet Coke?” when I sit down to eat there. That’s always a bad sign. It may also be a sign that I am eating at El Azteca a little too often.
I feel guilty that my teenage and young adult children have trouble telling time on an analog clock. They can do it, but it takes several minutes of squishing up their eyes and grimacing until they can figure out which hand points to the hour and which to the minutes. I didn’t know they couldn’t tell time until our electricity was out recently and they kept looking at the cat clock, whose eyes and tail no longer move, and asking what time it was. It’s probably my fault for never buying them watches with hands. It’s one of those things, you know? I felt really good if I could keep them all alive when they were young. I guess time-telling lessons just kind of got pushed into the non-urgent quadrant—the same place as teeth brushing and fingernail clipping. I used to feel guilt about those things too but I’m past that now since they can all groom themselves. and they seem to have pretty good teeth.
I also feel guilty that none of my kids makes their beds in the morning. I tried. I really did. I even fined (as in money) them for not making their beds for a period of time. This seemed to get their attention, but then they started saying they didn’t have any money to give to church so I stopped making collections. I demonstrated to them how easy it was to make a bed. I gave them heavy comforters and a sheet…only two items to pull up to their pillows…and they still leave them looking disheveled and messy. They don’t seem to mind the messiness—none of them. I have learned to just close their doors to keep the peace. One time, though, Cole had a long stretch where his bed was made perfectly. I would walk in his room and be so happy. Then I found out that he was sleeping in the tree house every night—on a futon—in a sleeping bag.
I feel guilty about not being more disciplined in my writing. which is why I am writing now. and why I am going try to start posting twice a week again. even if it’s about me and my guilt or my fat dog. Speaking of Neo, I am planning to write a post very soon about bathing him. because it’s a big event. because he’s a big dog. and because I took pictures of his very sad face last time I bathed him. Bet you can’t wait.
But now, I need to go. I think I will go buy some Diet Coke to assuage my guilt. But I will put it in a cloth bag to carry it out.
Monday, April 15, 2013
Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. ~ John 19:25
Thursday, April 4, 2013
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
Wednesday, March 27, 2013
This is my second story in the series, “Ignored Characters from the Easter Story”. Enjoy.
From Luke 22...
While he was still speaking a crowd came up, and the man who was called Judas, one of the Twelve, was leading them. He approached Jesus to kiss him, but Jesus asked him, “Judas, are you betraying the Son of Man with a kiss?”
When Jesus’ followers saw what was going to happen, they said, “Lord, should we strike with our swords?” And one of them struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his right ear.
But Jesus answered,“No more of this!” And he touched the man’s ear and healed him.
Curse those thorn bushes! How long must I walk through this dark, wet forest? My legs are being torn to shreds trying to find my way! There is no moon tonight. It is a very silent night indeed. A man named Judas is leading us through this thickness. His torchlight keeps flickering as he slinks through the trees like a snake; in fact, he reminds me of a snake…dark, sneaky, slippery. We are searching for that man…what is his name? Jesus? Yes. He claims to be the Son of the Most High God! Ha! Who does he think he is?! Blasphemer! What kind of leader has a follower who betrays him for money? A false one! Yes. A false one. We shall see what kind of man he is.
I trudge on, squinting in front of me, groping for the light ahead, the sweat from my brow makes my eyes burn. My mouth is parched; I can barely swallow. The stench of angry men—men on a mission—reaches my nostrils. All I can hear is sandaled feet crunching upon wet gravel…moving, moving…when will we stop moving? I must keep in step with the High Priest. By now, he is likely spewing venom. He will not give his power to that false prophet “king”!
I see the torch clearly now. Judas has stopped. Why have we stopped? Have we found the criminal? He sees him! Judas tells us that he will give his master a kiss. That is how we will know him. Taking a deep breath, then letting out a resigned sigh, Judas goes forth. His hands are shaking. Before he reaches him, the man, Jesus, stops and stares. His eyes display the excruciating pain of the imminent rejection. How can he know already that this disciple is a traitor? “Judas, would you betray the Son of Man with a kiss?” Judas reels back—almost as if he has been slapped—the kiss unfinished but the deal done. Suddenly, there is commotion amongst Jesus’ followers. I move to front as I hear the rustling of metal. I also raise my sword. I am ready; adrenaline is charging through my veins! I see the unmistakable swoosh of a weapon in the corner of my eye! What is happening here? I thought this man was peaceful!
In an instant, I feel cold metal against my head! My ear! My ear has been cut off! My ear has been cut off! It is lying at my feet. Darkness. Darkness. Darkness closes in around me. Spinning. In and out. Can you hear me? My shoulder receives the rush of blood. If I could just lift my hand to stop the bleeding...oh my head…dizziness…falling…my body hits the ground hard. Everything fades.
What is happening? Who is this man helping me to my feet? I feel as if I have just awakened. I am so confused. I touch my spinning, dust-covered, blood-plastered head. Wait--no blood. My ear is intact. My shoulder is dry. I am standing. I am whole. Was it all a dream? No. Everyone is as they were. Everyone is staring at me. Everyone—including Him—the One who calls Himself the Son of God.
“What did he do?” I ask the High Priest? No one speaks. He has healed my ear! It is soft and cool. A sword had removed it and he touched it and restored my ear! He made me whole again! I am living! He has given me life!
Still they cuff him and seize him. They will still arrest him. My right hand is still on my ear.
He has the power to heal? Could he really be a king? Could he really be Messiah?
I hear him speak softly as we walk. He is not resisting. “When I was with you day after day in the temple, you did not lay hands on me. But this is your hour, and the power of darkness.”
Am I a part of this darkness? Have I been the deceived one? Does this man know the way to the light? Is He the Light? Has my restored ear changed my eyes?
I must follow. I must follow him. My heart beats quickly. I am convinced He is Who He says He is. What have I been doing?
I yearn for truth. I yearn for light. He is the Light. I know this now. What am I doing? He really is the Lord! He really is the Lord!
Oh, my Lord! My Lord! Your hands touched my ear but saved my soul.
Will your blood be spilled for me?