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Showing posts from November, 2011

Influence

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It has been a long while since I have posted anything here. I have been busy completing three years toward my B.A. in English and my senior year is underway. My current class (Creative Writing) has finally given me the space to take off the tight harness of academic writing rules, and it feels SO GOOD!! After reading my first assignment, Mom and Daddy gave it their thumbs up and suggested I make it a blog post, so here it is. It is my story and their story. It's a little longer than my usual posts, but as with everything I have ever posted here, I pray it encourages you to run "up the sunbeam to the sun" (C. S. Lewis).


"Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ." 1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV


I sat above them on the stairs. Looking down through the window-like openings in the partition between the living room and the stairway, I listened to the basketball players, football players, baseball players, wrestlers, track athletes, both the lettermen and the also-…

Never Lose Heart

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The sky directly above me was dark and close with low, dense clouds. Across the valley, visible in peek-a-boo splendor, the sunrise was happening above and beyond the thick bank of clouds. You see, the sun rises in flaming beams of gilded glory even when our view is obscured by an ocean of clouds--it is always warm, always beautiful, always radiant. 
"Then he gave them an illustration to show that they must always pray and never lose heart." Luke 18:1 PHILLIPS
Dr. Luke tells his readers at the beginning of this chapter exactly the principle Jesus was illustrating before he relates the parable Jesus told. Nice of him, don't you think? This time at least, there is no treasure hunt for a truth veiled in a crypticstory we may or may not fully understand--I love that! This was a parable about an unjust judge who, though reluctant and uncooperative at first, was ultimately persuaded to give justice to a woman because of her persistence in pleading her case. Luke tells us Jesu…

Lessons in Bread-Making from the Bread of Life

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The homey fragrance wafts its way from the kitchen throughout the whole house, bringing with it memories of other times and places, other kitchens made warm and pleasantly steamy from an oven full of homemade bread. Of course the first one that comes to mind is the kitchen I grew up in, the kitchen in Canada where I learned under the patient and practiced hand of my mother how to measure and mix, to knead and form dough into loaves or rolls. How I loved to come home from school to find her just taking one of her beautiful creations out of the oven--best after school snack EVER!! I remember visits to a tiny kitchen in South Dakota where my Great Auntie Bess made homemade bread that was like food for the angels. I remember Thanksgiving Days in Iowa in the kitchen of my Auntie Marilyn, and of course my Grandma Ellen in her big old Iowa farmhouse, and my Grandma Laurene in the little yellow house my Grandpa built for her.

Here in California, in my own kitchen, I have been baking bread fo…

Voices: Theirs, Ours and His

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The burning kink in my neck increased in exponential increments with every tick of the clock as the pleasant, feminine tones of the instructor's voice competed with the loud, steady, humming drone of the air conditioner. Seated in sideways configuration, I had to turn my head sharply to my left to see the teacher and her power point at the front of the room--it was a long (but productive) three hours.

My first class of my return to my education was an orientation to college life and an introduction to many requirements, programs and resources I will need to be a successful college student. I listened carefully, trying to be a sponge to soak up all the information and taking notes where necessary. I've been out of this game for a VERY LONG TIME and I didn't want to miss a thing!

Later that evening, in an offhand conversation with someone I'd just met, I encountered another voice, one that, with the best of intentions, told me the profession I am pursuing is too competi…

For When Your Creativity is Thirsty . . . and a Wee Giveaway

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When I was too little to know any better, my mother tells of her complete mortification when I would make loud slurping sounds as the tray of communion cups was passed in our little church. The sight of all those little me-sized cups of grape juice going by just out of reach was all I needed to notice how thirsty I was. Since I didn't have the words, I found another way to let it be known that I wanted something to drink.

So it was, just about a month ago now, when Laura Boggess wrote about a new book she loved and was offering as a giveaway. As I followed her instructions to be entered, I found myself uncharacteristically REALLY hoping I would win. I never win these things, and don't often enter or think too much about them. There was something about the sight of that elegant cover, and the chance to see behind the scenes of L. L. Barkat's creativity that was like the tiny cups of juice that tempted that long-ago thirsty baby. I don't think I actually slurped, but I …

Restoring Order, Finding Peace

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"For He . . . is not a God of confusion and disorder  but of peace and order." 1 Corinthians 14:33a AMP

My dining room is overrun with boxes.
I find myself flashing back to the height of my work as an office supervisor with Census 2010. I can hear again the dull roar of whirring printers, dozens of voices, a crazy array of telephone ring tones and people scrambling to find which phone to answer. In that mad rush to count our county's million or so residents (1,049,025 to be exact) on a single day in the decennial year 2010, we had every inch of our office, the entire 4th floor of the office building, literally stacked floor-to-ceiling with boxes.  It was the only way we could organize our efforts to facilitate and manage all the binders, supplies and papers going out and coming back in, forms to be evaluated, sorted, data-entered, quality-checked, returned for corrections, shipped to headquarters, you name it, we had a box for it. Everything had to be precise and accurate,…

All Rights Reserved

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Sometimes the same thing can look different depending on where you're standing.


After the last few weeks, I would count copyright laws among those things that don't look the same from both sides. I have been both the copyright owner having to defend my copyright AND the one seeking permission to quote copyrighted material. What a different feeling I have about each position.

Click . . . click . . . click . . . I follow the links from page to page, site to site, watching a video here, perusing images there. My inherited Irish temper grows with every selection of my mouse. One of my pictures is being used all over the internet, without my permission, to promote a product for sale no less! You might think I'd feel flattered that someone thought enough of my photography to use this photo in this manner, but all I feel is cheated and disrespected. Harumph!

On the other front, I'm still online, still clicking away, my eyes scanning pages and pages of tiny print, fighting t…