Friday, November 30, 2007

Blessed be the Name of the Lord

Now that the weather has cooled off, I'm back to sitting out on the back porch. I've got a very comfortable chair out there, and I like to sit in my sleeping bag with a mug or thermos caraffe of something hot, sipping and praying. It soothes the snarles and tangles of my stressed out innards.

It's been a rough week with one of my kids. Many tangles that need soothing. (Prayers appreciated.)

This morning I saw two couples of cardinals: two sets of male and female pairs. I wonder if it was a family, and a pair of blue jays. It was lovely to see them flitting around in the early morning sun. The cardinals were especially well-hidden amongst the red and orange un-raked leaves in our yard. Simply beautiful. Also, since the weather has been odd, the honeysuckle has not decided to drop its folliage this fall, and the grass is still green. A few days ago I noticed that the neighbors still have roses blooming. Confused plants.



Another thing that happened is that I kicked my best shoes off on the back porch the other day when I was settling down for some prayers. There they sat for a couple of days. We generally keep all our shoes on the back porch, so I thought nothing of it. Yesterday, I went to retrieve those shoes, and they were gone. Gone. As in: Not there.

Did I bring them inside? I've looked everywhere. I even went through the dirty laundry, in case they got picked up accidentally with a load of clothes going to the wash room. Nope, not there. I've looked under everything, behind everywhere, in everything. I've searched high and low. Those shoes, last seen on my back porch, are gone.

It's creepy. Did someone go up onto my porch and look around, decide they liked the looks of those shoes and leave with them? They were cozy brown suede Merrell slides with a fleece interior. They were my only warm winter shoes. And I can't afford to replace them.

I did not buy those shoes. Last winter I prayed: "Lord, I need some brown shoes. Please help me to find some that are good for my back, that I can afford." A couple of days later a friend of mine gave me a bag of hand-me-downs, and on top were those shoes. A bad fit for her, a perfect fit for me. Brand new. God provided.

So now I'm still hunting for those shoes, having a hard time believing that they could have "walked off", while at the same time feeling creeped out and violated. Or, I'll feel really stupid when they turn up some place odd where I put them. But did I? I don't think so. I"m trying hard not to be sad and upset about those shoes. I suppose I was too attached to them. How could I not be? Every time I put them on I was reminded tangibly that God loves me and cares for me and answered that prayer.

The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away. Blessed be the name of the Lord.

Lord, I don't have any warm winter dress shoes....

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Educating Alana

I've decided to shake things up a bit in our home school, to foster independent learning, and to increase the content of the kids' reading materials. Towards that end, I organized our bookshelves by category, and in the process discovered we have lots of great resources.

Also, I discovered how few English and American Lit. classics I have actually read, juvenile or adult. I want to remedy this. I might as well work on reading what's on my shelf.

For instance, I've never read a book by Roald Dahl. Yesterday I started BFG (Big Friendly Giant). I don't know what I think yet. Books by Robert Lewis Stevenson and Jack London are on my "to read" list. Along with Wind in the Willows, Mary Poppins, and also Swiss Family Robinson. I don't particularly look forward to this process, but it must be done.

If anyone is stumped for gift ideas, bookstore gift cards would always be welcome, towards the goal of us building an excellent library. It is better to have a good book on hand than not. But we also use the library a great deal.

And some of our books are simply old and falling apart. We have an incomplete set of the Little House books and the Anne of Avonlea series. Narnia books are in tatters, and many others just don't exist in our home library.

I've been very disappointed with worldbook.com this year. They never seem to be able to load the articles I request. That's a resource I'm not spending any more money on in the future.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Think About It

If we consistently pray to God "Thy will be done", WHY are we surprised when life does not go our way?

(...speaking of myself of course....)

How often do we say those words, when what we really mean is "Dear God, please let your will be MY will, and let, therefore, MY will be done."?

Think about it.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Doll Making



Today I made this doll. She's a commission project, and represents about three hours of work. She's about twelve inches long. The dress is removable, but the hat is sewn on. You can't see it in the picture, but the crown of the hat is trimmed with the same rose trim as the dress. Her clothes are the softest flannel and her hair is made out of recycled wool.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

I ought to post something...really, I should.

Well, Thanksgiving came and went and all went well. Food was good. Nobody over-ate. Nice visit with some relatives. As usual I am slammed. So tired. Our whole family is introverts, so even a short visit with people leaves us all rather tired.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

A Day Full of Jesus

We got up early and went to Divine Liturgy this morning for the Feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple. That's my favorite thing to do on a weekday. And between now and Nativity, there's going to be a weekday liturgy about once a week. Tomorrow we go again, for Thanksgiving, so this week it's two! This makes me happy.

Of course I can't comprehend receiving Christ Himself in the Eucharist, but the reality is there nonetheless. I meet Him. And He fills me with life and joy. Even on the bad days. I cannot touch Him, yet he comes and touches me. I cannot apprehend Him, yet He gives Himself to me.

On the way home, I dropped some food off for someone who is ill, and was also giving a ride to the doctor for the brother in my parish who makes my chronic illness situation look like the walk in the park that it is. But this man is more full of peace and joy than just about anyone I know. He prays.

So, we are rolling along, up Harrodsburg Road discussing transformation, theosis and morphine; God's goodness and chronic pain, when suddenly we hear this funny noise. At first we thought the brakes, recently fixed, were going bad. But that seemed unlikely. He told me to pull over, that I had a flat. I can never figure these things out on my own. Turns out he was right. I would have driven on it much further if he had not been with me. I would have done serious damage to my car, most likely.

Between the two of us we managed to figure out where the jack was, get it out (both of us had hurting hands), figure out how to crank the screw loose that enabled the spare tire to drop to the ground underneath the van, unbolt the old tire (that took me standing on the lever to get it to budge...a good thing I'm so heavy), get the jack and laboriously crank it up (we took turns working and resting). I wasn't in much pain today (except for my wrists which have been "going" lately), but my friend was. He helped anyways, perhaps more than he should have. What a gentleman.

And in this humble service, I saw Christ in my brother. There on the side of the road. Cars whizzing past. Cripple and Crippleder changing a flat tire. It reminded me of washing feet. And I could see this transfiguration in my brother in Christ, I could see peace, and joy, and a light, humility and love.

There was more in my day, more glimpses of Jesus, but this one story is enough.

The cornbread for the stuffing is made (I was going to get a mix until I read the ingredients and wen't "Yuck, I'll make it from scratch!"), the butternut and acorn squashes are cooked, "Mrs. Smith" has been so kind as to make all those nice pies for me, so that is done as well.

Tomorrow it's just slow cooking the turkey, making the gravy, stir frying the green beans, and doing mashed potatoes, seasoning the squash, and that will be that.


Happy Thanksgiving to all, and also a blessed feast of the Entrance of the Theotokos into the Temple. Glorious Feast Day!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Monday, Monday

icon link
Well, Monday is not my least favorite day of the week. I generally like the fact that after a busy weekend (and this weekend was particularly busy!) I get to just be at home and do the things I do around here.

Today is a little bit different, though, since the coming Thanksgiving holiday requires a major clean-fest. I plan to have the house spotless, since I have in-laws coming, and that includes a baby and a toddler. I don't want anything dangerous or gross lying about, if you know what I mean.

And I don't like to clean, but must do it. So, here I go...

Why am I such a reluctant hostess? Hospitality is difficult for me, and even more so for my reclusive husband. So, it falls to my shoulders, if we ever have anyone over for a meal, or anything like that. And having people spending the night gives me anxiety.

I guess it's because all my feelings of inadequacy come to the forefront, and I feel the oddness that is our life. And I wonder what others will think, or whether their particular needs will get met while they are here. I'm not the type of woman who will have her cloth napkins and table linens ironed for the big day, but they will be clean and on the table, at least. But truth be told, my home is very humble and that is the part that I'm slightly embarrassed about. I'm too materialistic and I can't ignore that part of me as much when folks are coming over. In my eyes, my stuff is never as nice as someone else's stuff. I'm too attached to the things of this world, see?

So today my job is to try and de-stress, and to pray about those feelings while I clean. I think if I can get this house clean, guide my children in helping me, and do it without losing my temper, without stressing out unnecessarily, and without forgetting to pray, and without feeling sorry for myself, I will have accomplished something very big. Invisible, but very big.

Perhaps St. Martha can teach me something. And perhaps her sister, St. Mary, can teach me something as well. Holy friends of Christ, pray for me!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Communicating

I have a hard time communicating my faith with others. I get mush-mouthed and I never know quite what to say. I have a hard time pinning it down. Sometimes I read something, that really communicates what I would want to say, if I could say it so well.

I'd like to recommend the Blog "Glory to God for All Things" by Father Stephen Freeman.

He writes:

The great good news is that this faith worth believing is true. It survives even into the modern world because the modern world is weak and crumbles. It cannot feed a modern man, while the faith once and for all delivered to the saints sustains human beings even through the unimaginable horrors of the modern world. God is with us.

If you wait on your modern heart to just suddenly become the heart of a desert monk - you’ll have a long wait. The first floor is full of strange and wonderful things, but your heart will have to be changed in something longer than an instant (most likely). But most of us can find our hearts changed with something less than 40 years of weeping in a desert or a 20 year sentence in the cold of Siberia. Instead, you’ll have to pray even when you don’t feel like it and fast when you’d prefer to forget it, and attend Church like an old “Baba” in the dark years of Stalin. If the doors are open, be there - or at least try to be there - as if your life depended on it. It does. And the faith worth believing will come. Day by day it will come.

And then. in this modern world, you will see something that others don’t. You may be asked to tell what you see. Or you may prefer silence. But the reality of what you see will have removed the anxiety in your heart and replaced it with true faith. It is enough.

Homemaker

Last night I went to bed at 8:30 pm and slept for eleven hours. I didn't even hear my husband's snoring, which usually keeps me up half the night. That's one of the reasons I was so tired. It's been a mostly sleepless week.

I also went to bed fighting some very low feelings: Like, I'm a big fat(literally) nobody with a nothing life. I can't really delve into the whys or wherefores of those feelings, as just typing the words is bringing them back.

So, I'm a homemaker. But I'm not the good kind. I'm the kind with unfolded laundry and dubious kitchen floors. My house is the muggle version of the Weasley's place, the Burrow. Yay, rah. Who cares about homemakers? The world is certainly not impressed with me. And if I were getting a grade (I was always SO good in school!) it would not be a good one. Certainly not an "A".

I'm the kind of homemaker who would rather be cruising youtube for 9/11 conspiracy theory vids and researching the latest drama in the Autism community than mopping my floors or dusting. (By the way, Autism Speaks seems to have a bit of a eugenics bent to them: trying to develop a prenatal autism test. WHAT good would that do, except to encourage moms to abort their potentially autistic kids. Yikes. OK, so I've never had to deal with fecal smearing or intensive therapies, BUT STILL. What is the value of a human life?)

And I guess that's the gist of my question, and the gist of my negative feelings: What's the value of THIS human life? I'm only a small fraction of the person I thought I'd be when I grew up. I can't do it all. I'm a mediocre homemaker at the end of the earth.

But right now I really need to get off my butt and get some stuff done.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Not Such a Great Idea

I made a vegetable soup with canned oysters today. It was very STRONG, fishy. It stenched up the house. My oldest seems to like oysters better than I do. And no one else ate the soup. Or else my oldest child is just very stubborn and is forcing herlself to eat it because it's there. I'll probably force myself to eat another portion of it tomorrow, because it's there, but I won't be cooking it again. I'd rather just do veggie soup and do the oysters on the side. Perhaps smothered in mustard sauce, or something. Or shrimp. It's much milder.

We had to cut up and cook some apples, an orange and some five spice in lemon juice so that we could get rid of the fishy smell.

On a sad note, my youngest lost her baptismal cross today at the place where I go to Wednesday night bible study. Please say a prayer that we can find and retrieve it successfully. She and I are both very sad. Of course she didn't tell me she'd lost it until AFTER we'd left, and the building was locked up. I really hope I can get hold of someone there tomorrow, and go to find it in the play room.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Big Clear Out-Part 2

We got to Church this weekend with out car full of stuff, and I was amazed and gratified to see that we weren't the only ones. I wish I had a picture to post, of the huge mound of bags, boxes and hangers full of clothes and goods that people gathered. And from what I hear, many are still working on it and will bring more in in the coming weeks. The pile will grow.

Through a personal connection of a member of our parish, I think it's going to Hurricane relief in Haiti. Yes, some folks there lost everything. People he knows and is related to.

After Divine Liturgy, the pile was moved into the nave, and the priest blessed the stuff. Later, I supervised a crowd of very enthusiastic children who were eager to help move it out to the fellowship room. They made many trips back and forth. At the very end was a Rubbermaid tub, rather large and heavy, full of dishes. I went to find a strong young man to help carry the container, when lo and behold, here come a herd of kids, cooperatively pooling their strength, pulling that heavy container down the hall.

Now there's a picture of the Church at work, if ever I saw one!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

The Big Clear Out

This, lifted off the OCA website...I can't find the reference anywhere, although here's the quote: St. Basil the Great wrote in the fourth century: "the coat that hangs in your closet belongs on the shoulders of your brother who is naked, the extra shoes belong on the feet of the one who has none..."
So, getting ready for the Nativity fast:

I'm learning that there is a special emphasis on Almsgiving during the Nativity fast. Our hearts need to be quieted, and to be freed from materialism, especially during this time of year. The world wants to lead us quite in the opposite direction.

There are some really good notes here about what it's all about.

Father Justin read the famous quote by St. Basil the other day...the one that by the extra clothes hanging in our closet we are robbing the poor. I'd heard it before, but this time it really struck me.

I generally consider myself to be fairly non-materialistic. I don't own as much as many people do, and much of what I own, I consider to be fairly low-brow/crappy. There's a hint about what's in my heart, if ever there was one. Because what is in my heart is quite a bit of materialism, I think. This desire to own nice things. Or at least things nice enough that I can fake feeling good about my stuff. I drive by the mall, say a few disparaging things about it, but secretly wish I could shop there. I secretly am embarrassed about my home and the fact that I have duct tape in my refrigerator and a hole in my bathroom wall. So I don't practice hospitality very often. Yeah, that's what's in my heart. And it needs to change.

So, our parish is having a closet clear out. And then we are going to find a way to give our stuff to the poor. This fits with the "100 things" clear out that I've seen on other blogs.

I found I own way too many dishes. Way more than I need. And I've been hoarding more clothes for the kids than they need. And those clothes that are hanging in my closet that get passed over again and again. I had already done a big clear out in my closet a few months ago, so the problem there was minimal, but I did detect a few pieces of evidence of my greed. I thought this was an area where we were doing well (much smug self-righteouness) but shining the light of the gospel on it, shows up my sins. What struck me most was what I had to deal with in my own heart as I was going through our stuff.

The good result is, that I got a storage area of our house that was very very messy cleaned up and organized in the process of doing this work. So that is a good thing, as well.

Friday, November 09, 2007

Pumpkin Clam Chowder


1 T. oil
1 Onion, chopped...sautee in oil
3 cups or so of some sort of broth (I used fat free homemade chicken stock because the canned stuff is not on anyone's diet, but a veggie boullion cube and some water would work well.)
3-4 cups of cooked pumpkin
2 cloves of crushed garlic
juice drained off from 2 10 oz. cans of clams

Make the above into a soup. Once the pumpkin (it was in the freezer) is thawed and it's all hot, blend it all in a blender. Use a towel to hold down the top, lest it explode and burn your hand. Ask me how I know this.

2 cans of clams, chopped
1 cup fresh mushrooms, chopped
parsley
pepper
chives to taste.

Add the last ingredients after the pumpkin part is smooth and blended. Get it hot and serve.

This is really really really good. And it's low carb, legal or both a gluten free/casein free diet, Specific Carbohydrate diet and it has only 2 Weight Watcher points per serving. (I'm pretending like the recipe makes six servings).

Just in time for the nativity fast

Eat Your Vegetables

I had a nice time with a new friend yesterday. One of the ladies from the Communality Bible study I go to on Wednesday nights. She came over for "coffee" and we all know that that really means whatever smorgasbord of hot beverages a person can manage to lay out. I asked her if she wanted cocoa, coffee or tea...and she said "Cocoa, as long as it's sugar free!" I knew right then we'd be kindred spirits. So I made us a pot, and cracked open a packet of sugar free shortbread cookies. It was good. I counted the points.

Yes indeedy. I believe I blogged a few months back about giving up artificial sweeteners, and such. Well, I'm here to announce that reality land for Alana is that they are going to have to stay a part of my life. The sugar, honey, fructose, type of stuff, and various lower glycemic blends of various more natural sugars that exist still make me ill. And I just can't manage to NOT go for anything sweet ever. But I digress.

We drank some delightful hot cocoa and told each other our stories. I love hearing people's stories. Each one is unique, and each one is precious. But at the same time there are always some common human themes in the stories, and we share that human connection with each other. And when the person across the table is a Christian, there is an even greater bond.

Lisa told about how she came back to God at the mega Church my friends and I love to mock (God have mercy on me a sinner...), and about how she ended up sort of coming to the end of that place, moving on, and doing the whole "intentional living/simplicity/inner city/reach out to the poor" type of lifestyle choices together with her new faith community. I have so much to learn from friends like her because my heart yearns in similar directions (as far as outreach to the poor goes), but so often the bare facts of life prevent me from knowing what to do, doing, or having the energy or other resources to follow through with my desires.

I got to tell my story, too. All my Orthodox "weirdnesses", and how God brought me to this place I'm at. We compared notes on what it's like to be married to computer geeks. We chatted about her job. She's a Physician's Assistant.

And my favorite nugget of the day: Rolling her eyes she says "My beef against the whole Organics thing is...Well, it's not the people who are loading up on all those Kroger [conventionally grown] vegetables that are the ones that are coming in to the clinic with health issues, ya know."

Now THAT puts things in perspective.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

I lost weight this week!

1.4 pounds for a total of six since I started weight watchers.

And that, despite my trip to Nashville and my fibro-flare up.

Yaaaaaaaay! I was dreading weigh-in so much. And I'm glad that's behind me now.

Ky Highway Safety

My homeschool list is a treasure trove of information today! Here's more:

Important Travel Safety Information
>
>
>
> They will help change your tire, etc. Good number to keep with us in the
> car!
> Put this number in your cell phone, you never know when you will need it
>
> Today I found out that we have a free roadside service for highways,
> parkways, and interstates in KY They are funded by our taxes. They will
> change your tire, help with battery, or anything needed for an emergency.
> They do not want any money at all, not even a tip.
>
> Keep this number in your car and you can phone them 365 days a year, 24
> hours a day.
>
> 1-877-FOR- KYTC
> 1-877-367-5982
>
> He gave me a sticker to put on the windshield with the number listed above.
> I didn?t know this service was offered. He explained that not many people
> do and ask that I tell my friends. They were ever so helpful.
>
> Website: Highwaysafety.ky.gov
>

National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week

This is a cut and paste from info passed around on one of my homeschool lists:

Will you help us get the word out? November 11-16 is
National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week and
we’re planning several activities to highlight our
clients and their needs. Please share the following
information with all of your friends and contacts.
Please feel free to forward this e-mail directly.


National Hunger and Homelessness Awareness Week
Activities:

November 11-16
Everyone is invited to join the Hope Center and the
UPS Stores throughout Lexington and Winchester to
deliver Hope in a Bag to the homeless citizens in our
community. It’s easy to participate:
Fill a bag with personal items for a man or woman and
include a personal note of encouragement. Label
whether the bag is for a male or female. Bring the bag
to any Lexington or Winchester UPS store and your bag
will be delivered to a homeless person in the
community. Suggested personal needs items include
travel-size toiletries and cold weather wear (soap,
shampoo, deodorant, disposable razors,
toothpaste/toothbrush, lotion, white socks, winter
hats, gloves and chapstick). This is a perfect project
for a school group, church group, civic organization
or family.

Tuesday, November 13
The Hope Center has partnered with Max & Erma’s
Restaurant to hold a fundraiser event on November 13
at their Hamburg location. Twenty percent of the sales
from any customer who purchases a meal at Max & Erma’s
at any time during that day, and presents a Hope
Center Fundraiser coupon, will go directly to the Hope
Center . Please plan to enjoy a meal at Max & Erma’s
in Hamburg on November 13, and benefit the Hope Center
at the same time! The coupon is attached. Please
forward it to all of your friends and contacts. You
can also download the coupon from www.hopectr.org or
call 252-7881, ext. 3008.

Thursday, November 15
We’re inviting the community to come for a tour at the
Hope Center at 360 W. Loudon Avenue in Lexington .
Tours will be held at 10 a.m., noon and 2 p.m. We’ll
show all aspects of the facility and how it runs.
We’ll also provide highlights on the Hope Center ’s
Recovery Program for Women and the new George Privett
Recovery Center for Men which is currently under
construction.

Friday, November 16
Asbury College is hosting a very special event to
benefit the Hope Center . The evening will include
dinner, a speaker, and a silent auction all held at
the R.J. Corman Hanger. Dinner is being donated by
Abuelo’s Restaurant. The speaker will be legendary
jockey, Chris McCarron. Tickets are limited, and are
$30 each or four for $100. Please reserve yours today
by calling Kim Livesay at 859.252.7881, ext. 3008 or
klivesay@hopectr.org.


Thank you so much!!!
Kim Livesay
Associate Director of Development
Hope Center
P.O. Box 6
Lexington, KY 40588
E-mail: klivesay@hopectr.org
Phone: 859.252.7881, x3008
Cell: 859.230.1205
www.hopectr.org



__________________________________________________

Can't quite get it together

God have mercy! I'm having one of those weeks, and it's only Tuesday. Everything I do seems to be teetering on the verge of failure. Yesterday I was going to sew something, and then I realized I'd misplaced the paper that had the dimensions on it. So I had to e-mail the person who could tell me what they were. So I'll be sewing today, instead.

Yesterday I wanted to watch "The Hobbit" with the kids, since we'd just finished reading the book together after realizing my sewing project had to be put on hold. We got the popcorn made, and realized the version we'd checked out from the library was in Spanish.

So, we packed up to go to the library, and of course had to place a copy of the video we wanted on hold because it was at another branch.

And when we got home, realized that for all of that, we'd left that Spanish copy at home so we'll have to go back sometime today and get it returned.

I went for a walk even though I was mostly feeling sick and lousy and started feeling better...like I may actually make it two miles, when I had to cut my walk short at a mile and a half because it started to lightning and thunder. (Since the time I was out walking and lightning struck the street a few yards behind me, I don't mess with that kind of weather, ever.)

And the daylight savings switch is messing up when I get hungry. That makes me grumpy. Grrrrr.

Anyways...such is life.

Glory to God for all things.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Roadtrip

Thursday morning, I got in my car and drove down to Nashville, TN for a Koinonia Coffehouse Reunion Concert. I went, hoping to see some folks I knew from my High School youth group, and I was successful: I did get to see my youth group leaders from back then. These people blessed me tremendously and I wanted to hug their necks.

Neck-hugging is important.

I also wanted to pick up some Dogwood music, and I was successful with that as well.

A bit of history:

Koinonia Bookstore/Coffeehouse was a ministry spin-off of some people in Belmont Church, started back in the early 1970's. They had Friday and Saturday night concerts there, and many many people were reached for Christ during that time. Lots of baptisms, apparently. Of course, spun off from all that were things like "New Believer's Classes" etc. All of it very woo-woo-charismatic and exciting.

But apparently those concerts at Koinonia were sort of the beginning of the Nashville contemporary Christian music scene. Big names such as Amy Grant (after she sang she was sitting right in front of me), Michael W. Smith (he was the warm up act at the concert...leading the audience in some songs of the "praise-n-worship" variety before the actual concert proper.

So, the acts that I most enjoyed were the singer/songwriter bits: Alan Robertson (I used to babysit his kids), Billy Sprague (He wrote "Oh Heavenly Father, Oh Light of the World...do you remember that one? My husband who lived nowhere near Nashville ever does. Music spreads, I guess. I knew Billy as the song leader for your youth group summer trip to Florida in 1984), Jim Weber (whose wife Mel was one of the most influential youth ministers in my life as a teen, and whom I will always love. Jim's music is good, too.) and of course, Amy Grant (who did a teensy bit with the youth group here and there...I remember she let a few of us girls sing with her on stage during church one sunday...I think it was Thy Word is a Lamp unto my feet...does this mean I can claim to have been an Amy Grant backup singer? I think not).

But best of all was Dogwood. I cut my teeth on Dogwood's music as a kid. We were in Nashville and saw some Koinonia action in 1974, but most of the connection, for me, was the fact that somebody sent us boxes with record albums in them. Lots of Dogwood, some Fireworks (they sang at the concert as well), etc.

Life back then seemed very "happening", especially for these musicians, starting a whole new "thing".

Is it really as simple as some people getting together with a bit of equipment and a stage, some songs and a small audience? Perhaps it was back then. Right time, right place, etc.

When we came to America (25 years ago yesterday) my dad's first job was managing Koinonia bookstore during a time of remodeling and transition. By that time, the Koinonia concerts had been moved next door the the Belmont Church building. And it was all a big deal, a happening. Very exciting. But definitely not the simple and humble beginnings from ten years before. People seeking God, for sure.

So, there I was. At the reunion concert. Everyone was rather Geriatric except for Amy Grant, who actually must have some Merlin thing going on because she looked younger, not older.



And I wondered about people. Have they changed as much as I've changed? There's no time at an event like that to really sit and fellowship. It was more like: "Oh, Hi! Where are you now?" That's a loaded question, isn't it? What does that mean? Does it mean "Where do you live?" Does it mean "Do you still love Jesus?" The summary is quick: I live in Lexington KY, married, four kids, homeschooling them. The funny thing is, the people I saw who were my youth group leaders started their families later than I did, so we have kids the same age, even though I'm more than ten years younger than they are. So we talked shop a bit. One man's son is also on the Autistic Spectrum, so we compared acronyms: PDD, ADHD, AS...it's a parent of a kid on the the spectrum thing.

It was just so good to see people, even if ever so briefly. I also hooked up with my parents, and got to spend some time with them. We stayed at my cousin's house, which was great, too.

I gave out my blog addy to a few folks, so I'm wondering if they'll remember to stop by here and read this blog to catch up in that way. I hope so. I'm thinking of writing a "here's been my life journey since I graduated High School" type of post.

But not right now. I'm glad to be home again, and I'm glad the Holy Spirit has brought me to where I am. And I trust God has been faithful in the lives of my old friends as well.

Friday, November 02, 2007