Friday, March 30, 2012

Dream Big.

First off let me start by saying that I have already driven a car today.


But while I was driving, I was daydreaming a daydream I often have, about how I would love it if cars weren't "necessary." Now of course I got a taste of this living in Europe, where we didn't own or really even drive a car for 2 years. Yes, sometimes it would have been more convenient, but mostly, we didn't miss it. I liked having the grocery store and work and church, etc, all within walking distance. And with sidewalks that led to these places. And for a reliable bus system that had bus stops within walking distance for those days when your destination seemed to be too far away. For longer trips, we were within easy walking distance to the train station and bus station. There were always shuttles to and from the airport. There was always a way to get to where you needed to go without having to worry about taking care of a silly car.

Here in the US (or, at least where I live), we don't have good sidewalks. We don't have reliable bus systems. I can't just walk to the grocery store, or to church. I can't walk somewhere that will shuttle me to Pittsburgh, or to the airport, or to a bus station. People complain about gas prices all the time, but really it falls on deaf ears* when you're talking to me. I don't think the "solution" is for someone else to lower gas prices. I think the solution is for us to drive less...but unfortunately we're not set up for it. 

But I wonder how my life would be different if I insisted on not driving for most of the time? Would I be able to survive on the few groceries I could scrounge up? Would I be willing to walk all the way downtown to buy a few groceries (uphill on the way back...and 1.1 miles away). What sort of things would I have to give up? In what ways would we benefit?

Maybe a project for this summer. If it isn't 1000 degrees fahrenheit out every day.
The first picture I could find on the computer that had people walking.

*Pun recognized. I know I am hard-of-hearing.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Making. Creating.

As I was flipping through Geneva College's Winter 2012 edition of their magazine for the 100th time (yes, it is time to update our bathroom reading material), I came across a beautifully written in-memoriam piece written by a professor I don't know, about a professor I didn't know. I found a quote that I would like to put as the banner of the ole blog, and figured that since most of my regular reader probably doesn't come to the blog, but reads it on a reader, I would post it here too. An edited version, of course, to make it more general sounding.

"...until the Romantic Movement of the 19th century, no writer would have claimed to be creative. Chaucer and Shakespeare would have cocked a quizzical eyebrow, Milton and Bunyan would have fixed you with a baleful glance, if you had referred to them as creators. They always identified themselves as makers. They knew that there is only one Creator, and that the rest of us are simply makers, doing what we can with what we have been given. We are makers in the service of the Creator. Our calling is from God. Our groundedness is in the Lord. Our wisdom begins in reverence for God."
- Dr. Ann Paton

Friday, March 23, 2012

Unsolved Mysteries

Well as you may know, my cell phone is quite old-fashioned. It can make calls and texts, tell me when to wake up, and take some tiny pictures and (sometimes) send them to Twitter. I also utilize the Notepad feature quite a bit. No fancy shmancy touchscreen or data plan though.

So anyway, I need to make room to make more notes (I guess 30 notes is the limit), and I thought I would  get rid of some here. There are two notes that have Scripture passages that I apparently wanted to remember, but don't necessarily remember why. Hopefully when I look them up there will be a theme or something. Anyway, I'm posting them here, so that I don't have to have them taking up precious note space on my tiny red phone.

But first: 
Does anyone know what kind of tree this is? It is the most beautiful spring tree ever in the world. I get to walk past it every day, and I love my life. It is constantly shedding petals in the most beautiful way. I would like to have a bunch in my yard someday, should I ever grow up and have a yard (and then when my children get married, I will transplant them (the trees, not the kids) to line their outdoor spring wedding. The trees will also serve as a flower girl, if needed). So it is really quite important that you find out what kind of tree this is for me. Ok, thanks.
PS....took this picture with my phone. Make of it what you will.

Note 1:
Genesis 38:17
Genesis 43:8
Genesis 45:5
Isaiah 6:8
Isaiah 58:9
Numbers 13:2

Note 2:
Proverbs 16:9
Proverbs 19:2
Proverbs 25:25
Proverbs 27:2

Expanded for blog:

Genesis 38:17
“I’ll send you a young goat from my flock,” Judah promised.
“But what will you give me to guarantee that you will send the goat?” she asked.

Genesis 43:8
Judah said to his father, “Send the boy with me, and we will be on our way. Otherwise we will all die of starvation—and not only we, but you and our little ones.

Genesis 45:5
But don’t be upset, and don’t be angry with yourselves for selling me to this place. It was God who sent me here ahead of you to preserve your lives.

Isaiah 6:8
Then I heard the Lord asking, “Whom should I send as a messenger to this people? Who will go for us?”
I said, “Here I am. Send me.”

Isaiah 58:9
Then when you call, the Lord will answer.
    ‘Yes, I am here,’ he will quickly reply.
“Remove the heavy yoke of oppression.
    Stop pointing your finger and spreading vicious rumors!

Numbers 13:2
“Send out men to explore the land of Canaan, the land I am giving to the Israelites. Send one leader from each of the twelve ancestral tribes.”

Ok, as it turns out, I have no idea why I was saving these particular verses (send/sent in common?).

Moving on to note 2.

Proverbs 16:9
We can make our plans,
    but the Lord determines our steps.

Proverbs 19:2
Enthusiasm without knowledge is no good;
    haste makes mistakes.

Proverbs 25:25
Good news from far away
    is like cold water to the thirsty.

Proverbs 27:2
Let someone else praise you, not your own mouth—
    a stranger, not your own lips.

So there you have it. The ones from Proverbs are ones I think about often, so maybe just wanted the references to be able to remember where to find them? We may never know.

Also, don't forget to tell me what kind of tree that is.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

New Year's Rezzies

Before I start out, I would just like to say that this is still my most read blog post. I can't figure it out, either.

Being the first day of Spring (as observed at least in the U.S....I know it has been Spring other places for a while now), I thought it would be a perfect time to look at my goals for 2012.

  • 1. The Birthday Project
  • It isn't November yet, but in January I scraped the snow and ice off of somebody else's car. That's gotta count for something.

  • 2. Less Snark, More Positivity
  • Some days are better than others. Mostly I will just go back and erase tweets that I deem too snarky. 

  • 3. Show Interest
  • Not sure if I'm doing this or not. Probably not as much as I should. I still have the rest of the year to work on this.

This was supposed to be at the bottom of the post, but it landed here. I didn't feel like moving it. It's the beautiful orchid I got in January. When we got back from Arizona, the bud had turned into a beautiful flower. Spring!

  • 4. Soap
  • I haven't, for many various reasons (one of them having to do with #5), made soap since my big soap failure in January. Maybe maybe this summer.

  • 5. Finish Well
  • April 23rd, the day when all my homework needs to be completed and turned in, is coming faster and faster. This is probably part of why I haven't been succeeding at #6. But I'm still managing to keep my head above water. Or I'm just in denial. Either way, I'm feeling ok about it.

  • 6. Blog more
  • Fail. But this summer I'm sure I will have more interesting things to talk about (or maybe not, but at least more time to talk about them). For one, I've been accomplishing many goals of years past this year, that's gotta count for at least a post or two.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Perhaps you remember what I wanted to accomplish in Arizona:
1. Black Queen with Grandma.
2. Sun. Warmth.
3. In-n-out Burger.
4. Avocados aplenty.
5. Pool. (swimming, not billiards)


1. Black Queen with Grandma.

2. Sun. Warmth.

3. In-n-out Burger.

4. Avocados aplenty.

Ok, ok. We ate the avocados before we could document it. But here is the start of a potential avocado tree for Grandma's yard!
5. Pool. (swimming, not billiards)
Taken with my phone. We actually swam here every day. Just never took the camera over.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Reading through the book of Matthew for a class. The paper is due by midnight. I've already posted a passage as a facebook status, and don't want to be too overwhelming, so will post this one here. Got to spread it out, people.

Matthew 8:5-13. I too, am amazed by this man's faith, and his understanding of authority.

The Faith of a Roman Officer 
5 When Jesus returned to Capernaum, a Roman officer came and pleaded with him, 
6 “Lord, my young servant lies in bed, paralyzed and in terrible pain.”

7 Jesus said, “I will come and heal him.”

8 But the officer said, “Lord, I am not worthy to have you come into my home. Just say the word from where you are, and my servant will be healed. 
9 I know this because I am under the authority of my superior officers, and I have authority over my soldiers. I only need to say, ‘Go,’ and they go, or ‘Come,’ and they come. And if I say to my slaves, ‘Do this,’ they do it.”

10 When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. Turning to those who were following him, he said, “I tell you the truth, I haven’t seen faith like this in all Israel! 
11 And I tell you this, that many Gentiles will come from all over the world—from east and west—and sit down with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob at the feast in the Kingdom of Heaven. 
12 But many Israelites—those for whom the Kingdom was prepared—will be thrown into outer darkness, where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

13 Then Jesus said to the Roman officer, “Go back home. Because you believed, it has happened.” And the young servant was healed that same hour.
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