Sunday, September 9

Glad Not to Be a Skink

Yeah, it's been forever again and I've got all sorts of news and notes I could be updating everybody on ... but instead I'll just share this little thought I had while watching a nature show on Australia with the family the other day.

Praise God I'm not a skink!

Did you know that baby skinks (who often come in pairs) can weigh up to 40% of mama's body weight?

In human terms, that's like giving birth to a set of two-year-old twins.


Tuesday, March 20

Guilty Pleasures

Once upon a time, before I married Adam, I eschewed reality shows as the (mostly) mindless foolishness they are. I saw how the landscape of television had changed since the advent of Survivor and I wasn't impressed.

I can't recall exactly when I discovered that Adam is a bit of a reality series junkie. It may not have been until after we were married. He likes Survivor, American Idol, The Apprentice, Hell's Kitchen, The Bachelor, and probably a dozen more that I can't recall just now. I scoffed. But then I started sitting down to take a look at some of them.

Now, I still can't stand The Bachelor or Survivor, but I'll actually sit contentedly through an episode or two of The Apprentice, and Hell's Kitchen can be quite a bit of fun. I used to watch American Idol regularly before Adam started working nights (and my favorite judges all left the show).

dance sequinsI'll even confess through a sheepish blush that I've actually been counting down the days until Dancing with the Stars came back on for their 14th season, which is only 3 or 4 more than I've watched. The season premier aired last night. I haven't seen it yet, because Adam had to work, so we'll be watching it tonight on Hulu.

I'm not entirely sure what the appeal of the show is. I just find something refreshing about watching usually-pampered celebrities having to work at something that (amazingly, every season) is so much harder than they were expecting. Nobody really wins anything--there's not a cash prize or a charity donation or anything more than a goofy trophy and the privilege of saying, "I won."

It's purely entertainment. Then again, maybe that's what's so appealing. No one has their life changed with a huge influx of cash or a dream job, yet almost everybody talks about how being a part of the experience taught them something about themselves they'd never known before. And if that's not enough, there are lots of sparkly costumes every week.

And, I mean really, what could be more fun that watching macho football players becoming self-actualized while dressed in hot pink sequins?

Monday, March 12


When I was a kid, my grandmother had a small wall hanging in her bedroom. It was a collection of tiny wooden plaques attached to one another like a long train heading up an imaginary track next to the door frame. Each piece of wood had a single word painted on it, "love" and "joy" and "peace" and some others. It was years before I connected that decoration with the verses from Galatians 5.

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

I read that list again this morning as part of my devotional time. I realized with dismay that my life more closely resembles the previous verses most of the time. Paul pointed to actions which make our focus on our own pleasures painfully obvious:

... hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy ...

And yet, it doesn't have to be this way. I looked at the "fruit of the Spirit" verses again. What would my life look like, I considered, if I were to truly allow God's Spirit to shine through me?

Living my life with Christ at the center, I have the power to
  • care for myself and others with God's own heart
  • delight in God's attention to every detail
  • recognize that God holds me by the hand, no matter what my circumstances
  • relax in God's perfect timing
  • make life easier and more pleasant for those around me
  • choose God's best in every situation
  • remain true in my commitments to God, to myself, and to others
  • temper my anger and my frustrations with God's grace
  • be deliberate in my actions and reactions
Frankly, that sounds like a much nicer life to live than the one I'm generally inhabiting. Which makes me question, why don't I simply allow God to work His power in me, all the time? Instead I'm continually giving my heart to Him only to wrest it from His hands, screaming like a two-year-old, "Mine, mine, mine, mine!"

What exactly is it I think I'm gaining?

Thursday, March 8


I have this grievance to air. Well, it's not exactly a grievance. I'm a bit perturbed by it, but it's not all a bad thing. It's hardly a catastrophe or anything. Really, it's more of an annoyance than a complaint. Even then, the issue has redeeming qualities.

Maybe I should just start at the beginning.

You see, a couple of years ago I bought a pair of sweatpants. I needed something a little roomier than my usual size (as you do when you're six months pregnant). They fit fine and I wore them for the rest of my pregnancy and for quite some time since. All was well.

Then this past summer, I really made a go of the whole low-carb diet and I started to drop some serious weight. In fact, as of yesterday, I'd lost more than 90 lbs since I'd bought those sweatpants.

Only, I wore those pants yesterday. Out of the house. Same pants: no pins, no stitching. Granted, they were roomy, but they weren't falling down around my ankles.

Which brings us to the crux of my quasi-complaint. On the one hand, it's fabulous that I've been able to continue wearing the same clothes as I've been losing weight. I certainly can't be running out to replace my whole wardrobe every 15 lbs, so the fact that this one pair of sweats has lasted me all this time is really a good thing.

On the other hand, it's a little disheartening that I've lost nearly 100 lbs and I'm still wearing the same pants!

Monday, February 27


(noun) A substance developed to help one get through those days when considering statements such as, "Gee, maybe we should have just adopted a puppy."

ex: Just hand over the chocolate and nobody gets hurt!

Monday, February 6

Notes from a Busy Household

I must have started half a dozen posts in the last month and a half. Not a one of them made it far enough along to bother with the bright orange "Publish" button that mocks me from the top of the page.

Life moves so fast sometimes. Do you suppose I've seen that Matthew Broderick Super Bowl commercial too many times? It's one of the few I really liked. As I watched most of them, I felt like I must be outside the targeted demographic because of my age. Or my gender. Or maybe my species.

It seems like I've hardly had a moment to myself since before Christmas, with the exception of a few that were very carefully carved out under heavy guard. Extra special thanks go to Adam for helping carve and guard! I'm sure I'd have gone completely round the bend without them, rather than just most of the way, holding on for dear life.

So what have I been busy doing, you ask? Well, I put 17 items on my Big To-Do list last month. As of this morning, 11 of them are done.

For the last several weeks, I've been:
  • Finishing mittens for Ian, just in time for the weather to get all warmish again. On the plus side, they're adorable, even if all they're doing right now is dangling from the sleeves of his coat. I did make notes while I was working on it, so I'm going to try making a pair for Rosi as well and actually writing up the pattern before the end of winter. (Mental note: update list)
  • Writing out three grocery lists and bought enough food to keep us all fed.
  • Doing our taxes and submitted them online. Hooray for Free File at!
  • Developing a lesson plan on the history of Jane Goodall's Roots & Shoots program
  • Writing a scientifically accurate story of how a snowflake grows and practiced making snow paint out of various ingredients. (For the record, I thought the shaving cream version had the best effect given the cost and effort involved in making the paint.)
  • Updating my resume. Again. I think I've finally got it the way I want it now.
  • Revising my professional profile. If you're not familiar with the term, that's a one-page overview of my career history, skills and qualifications, and what I'm looking for in a new job situation. It's sort of like a mini-resume, but is specifically designed for networking purposes.
  • Becoming a member of a new church. Well, the church isn't that new, but we've only been going there for about 6 months. It's nice to have a church home again, but it's really not helping at all with the being-less-busy thing. It's a good busy, I know, but sometimes I just want a day off or three. (Another mental note: Don't forget to send that e-mail about the VBS planning meeting next week)
  • Figuring out where to donate a batch of recycled heart crayons so that the next project we're doing with the Roots & Shoots group will actually be useful to some kids other than ours. We're donating them to the local Ronald McDonald House.
Add to that all the normal everyday stuff like cooking and cleaning and making sure the kids bathe regularly, learn some new stuff, and don't kill one another. Or their father. Or me.

And, hey, what's going on with my blog design? I didn't authorize a blue stripe down the middle of my sidebar! Now I'm going to have to mess with that again (attempting to make yet another mental note).


Oh, dear.