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Wednesday, January 28, 2009


What picture could most accurately illustrate bad communication?

Maybe this picture?

How's this picture?

What about this picture?

Anyway you get the picture. Bad communication starts out small. Matthew 5:25 says to "settle matters quickly". Ephesians 4:26 says "do not let the sun go down while you are still angry". Communication isn't easy. No one is necessarily good at it. It takes practice and hard work.

Some you of may think about this post later. A few of you might think, "Maybe I should work on my communication". Others of you might think, "What did he say?" You know who you are.

Sunday, January 25, 2009


Here's a new picture of Sir Issac in his tank.

Can you see his snack in the lower portion of the picture?

Silly boys

I made some time to run an errand in between work and coming home to study for school. I fished my way through some side streets toward home. I saw an empty field flooded with water and filled with mud. I used my jacket on the seat to cover the things sitting there so that they wouldn't roll around. There was a green truck making its way to the same destination. I allowed it to take the lead and fling mud in all directions. When they saw me they sort of paused as if checking to see if I was going to break up their fun. I shoved a fist in the air and they smiled as they hit the gas for another spin. That's when I took to the field to fling my own mud. After spinning a few circles and going into a figure eight, I noticed that a family on the bike trail stopped to watch us get crazy. I did have to get to homework and I wanted nothing to do with getting stuck so I took off. Here's a picture of what little mud my little truck could fling.

Friday, January 9, 2009


This is one of my favorite pictures I took this fall!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

I married a smart fellow

My right eye has been bugging me for a while. I couldn't figure it out since I recently put in new contacts. My eye has had a lovely shade of red for days in a row.
Last night while talking about the red hue that made me look oh so attractive, Kyle suggested putting in a new contact. Rather than get huffy and say I just did that (because believe it or not having new and even good ideas while trying to get ready for bed can result in "chicken fights" as we call them ie little fights that don't really matter), I nicely told him that the contact was new. He wondered if sometimes you could get a bad contact. Every once in a while you get a dud in other products, so why not these. He then proposed a brilliant plan. Why not put in a new contact and see if the redness goes down and if my eye isn't so irritable. Then, if it does improve, I know that the former new contact is a dud and I can toss it. Those of you who are analytical like will see that this hypothesis had good merit.
This morning I tried the experiment. Wouldn't you know, my eye isn't all fussy and a lot of the redness has gone down. The best part is that I restrained my prideful and stubborn heart not to interrupt Kyle as he told me his idea. Part of me wanted to get all of the reasons why there "shouldn't" be bad contacts. For example, I don't recall in the ... 10 plus years I've been wearing contacts of one going bad in the first few days. Plus I hate wasting things, why would I "waste" a "good" contact? God and I have been talking a lot about my prideful, stubborn heart as of late. Yea for a break through! Yea for answered prayers! Yea for a lack of super red and irritable eye!!!

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

God's Moving - Wednesday

Our youth pastor and his wife are moving. I've got this extra time I mentioned, so I decided to see if she wanted to go to lunch on Monday. While there she mentioned that a friend of ours recently miscarried. There really aren't words to express the emotion that comes upon hearing those words. There is grief and brokenness and deep sadness.
After lunch my thoughts returned to my friend. I didn't know what to do. I wanted to help, but I had no idea how. Do you know that often times God does know how to comfort even when we don't? Do you know that even though I can't fix the problem, I can pray for healing of her and her husband's heart? I took a few moments to pray and decided to call and let God move. I offered to share a meal or go to coffee/tea. We decided to have lunch today.
Today was a special lunch, not just because I love Panda Express. Today was special because I got to share time with a friend and her two little ones. I got to eat and laugh and talk. I got to listen, and I think that is a lot of what was needed. I was thanked for being a distraction from being home and lonely. Today was special because although it looked as though I decided to go to lunch on Monday, it was really God opening an opportunity to help someone that I've wanted to get to know better.

God's Moving - Monday

When I came home from visiting family I realized that I had a little over a week before I was to be back in school. I didn't want to waste that time, but I didn't have any specific plans other than doing some lesson planning and grading. Kyle has been working 12 hour shifts and Sunday night I just wasn't tried when he got into bed so that he could be at work by 6. I stayed up and journaled. I'd had some fears about the tension in the Middle East. I became transparent about my fears and God reminded me of the time I have. I prayed that He'd show me what to do with my time.
On Sunday, Matt preached from Philippians 4:2-3 where two gals are having a fight and causing drama in church. Matt asked that if people we knew were asked if there was a broken relationship between us, what would they say? Are we willing to forgive and work toward restoring relationships? I like how Matt doesn't sugar coat and how his questions are often penetrating. Notice that he didn't say if he asked us, what would we say. No, he said if people we knew were asked. I initially sighed with relief because Kyle and I are currently communicating well.
The next morning while journaling I thought about the question some more. Was there someone that could feel brokenness. I thought about a bit of drama that had happened over Christmas. I wondered if a sister of mine thought I was holding onto what had happened. I prayed about it and decided to call and clarify that I wasn't holding on to the drama and I loved her despite the drama. She was grateful for the call. As we chatted she mentioned something about housing and paying bills on time. It jogged my memory that there was a energy bill that Kyle had filled out but had forgotten to take up to the office. After getting off the phone, I found the bill and turned it in. It happened to be the last day the bill was counted on time. It would have been a $50 late fee, more than the bill itself, had it been turned in the following day.
As I walked back to the apartment I was stunned by God's movement. Had I not been sensitive to His leading, I wouldn't have journaled. If I hadn't journaled, I wouldn't have felt lead to call my sister. Had I not prayed for wisdom in the conversation, I wouldn't have called and ended up hearing about paying bills. Had I not paid the bill, we would be out $50. Had I not prayed to use this week wisely, I would have taken credit for God moving earlier this week.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

We have a pecan tree!

Our next door neighbor Gerri is great. She is full of information on all sorts of stuff. For example, I went next door to ask for 2 cups of milk for waffles. Hurray for not checking to see if I had all the needed ingredients. She was in the middle of painting a chair and shelling pecans. She told me that she had collected a 5 gallon bucket of pecans from a pecan tree. I asked where the tree was and she rolled her eyes, marched me to the window, and pointed maybe 40 yards from our apartments to a pecan tree that is next to our apartment office. Oh!
I guess that pecans are like $15 at Costco for just a pound. At Savemart they are like $8 for 6.75 ounces. She had it all laid out for a shelling operation with a scale, hammer, nut crackers, and those picks that come with them. She had shelled 9 pounds of pecans and had them separated into different size ziplocks for quick retrieval for baking. There was still maybe another pound and a half in a box on the floor for her to get to.
I took out the trash today and was looking at the pecan tree while I walked. I decided to check it out. There were many pecans still in their hulls on the ground for easy pickings. Then in the rockbed there were more but they blended into the rocks which made them harder to find. I filled my back pockets with pecans. I held a bunch in my shirt too. Here's the stash -

Empty hulls

Rinsed pecans

Sir Issac Newt

Here are pictures of the tank and of Sir Issac.

I put in a aeration bubble strip to help water circulation.

I think the bubbles confuse him.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

San Fransisco

deYoung Museum

The view from up there must be breath taking.

The sculpture below is massive and stunning.

This must have taken a bit of time to create.


I'm not a coffee drinker, well at least not anymore. I used to hate the smell of coffee. I'd actually leave the kitchen when my dad was getting the coffee ready for the following morning. I tried coffee in high school at an all nighter with my youth group. I thought it tasted pretty terrible... but it was a "cool" thing to drink coffee. I did find in college that I love Starbuck's caramel frappuccinos. However, all of that coffee and sugar wasn't good for my stomach or nerves.
Thus, tea came into the picture. My brother works at Starbucks. I'd order water when a group of gals and I went there. He wanted me try new things. I tried several things until I found out that I really like the berry blossom tea they serve. My brother would make a tall tea and then pour it over a grande cup of ice and mix in some sugar. Yum!
I lost my voice when I went to a woman's retreat this past winter. Hume had tons of tea options, but none of them were berry blossom. So, I tried a different tea with every meal in hope of finding a good tea and also in hope of finding my voice. My voice did get a bit better.
Last night I had a wonderful tea. I tend to like the lightly flavored teas. This one was a apple cider tea if I remember right. YUM!
Currently I'm enjoying a raspberry green tea that my sister got me. Sigh, there is just something great about a warm cup of tea.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Witnessed to

I went to get my eyes checked today. While I was in the waiting room I was sitting next to a family of four; dad, mom, son, and daughter. I assumed that they were either Apostolic or Pentecostal due to the ladies' Levi skirts and long braided hair. It is always odd to me to be sitting in close proximity with people you don't know. Case and point, the mom and I made eye contact, naturally I smiled but then she did not know what to do with my smile, so she quickly turned her head. Later I heard her teenage daughter say, "That guy, mom". I did not know who they were talking about, so I didn't think to look at them because I had already, possibly, made the mom uncomfortable with my friendly smile. She stood up and leaned across the gap of chairs to hand me a card. I took a look at it and saw that it was a business type card for their church with service times and such. Their church was in deed Pentecostal. I told her thank you just as I was called back.

I told Tasha the story and she asked what it felt like to get witnessed to. I thought about it and said that I appreciated the woman being bold enough to simply hand a stranger a card to their church. We thought more about it though and asked questions about witnessing. 1) What is more effective: to hand someone a tract or to talk to them? 2) What is less intrusive? 3) Are they equally effective because people respond in different ways? Then I wondered why believers of different denominations do not openly converse.

Does anyone thoughts on any of this?