Saturday, June 28, 2008

erin's coming!!

our friend erin will be here in 10 hours - i can't wait!!! wish you were all here to join us!

Thursday, June 26, 2008

better stories

pink and i had an important conversation yesterday. she's 12 and we've been navigating this "tween" thing for a bit now. she's starting to individualize and define herself apart from liam and i - we know this is an important stage, specifically for us as parents. how to guide her through this process so she knows we're here and there are boundaries, but not to do so with heavy hands and push her into rebellion.

music is one of the ways she is defining herself - not uncommon for pre-teens. i have the itunes account, so purchases are "through mom" at the moment. our agreement is that we sit down and listen to the song together, i read the lyrics, if i struggle with them, she reads them out loud and then we watch the video together. if the song passes that muster the purchase is made. it brings a lot of dialog and interaction. yesterday it created a bit of friction that we processed out together.

she falls into the bubble gum, disney kids type of music. i was thrilled that branched into hairspray recently, but most of the music is "oooh he likes me", "gosh i think he's cute" and "oh, my heart is broken" kind of drivel. it's so difficult for me to watch this young, vibrant lady begin to define herself as a "half" person because her culture is beginning to tell her that without a man in her life she is not whole.

we listened to taylor swift and ashley tisdale songs and so few of them were empowering to her as an individual. it breaks my heart. i started to ask some questions and try to help her untangle the message these songs were telling her. i got the "you only want me to listen to christian music" feedback and i balked. so.not.true. i tried to help her understand that the movies she watches, the books she reads and the music she listens to are forming her stories. it is normal for a lot of those stories to be about relationships, even relationships with boys. but if every story she buys into keeps telling her that she's only 1/2 a person without a man she will begin to believe it.

too much pressure for a twelve year old. too much pressure for my single 40 year old friends. i loathe that kind of misinformation. i used the three taylor swift videos as an example (wow, she is a beautiful little barbie doll that one...)

first an adorable song about a boy who is her friend but doesn't know she exists. the second about the boy who scatters roses in her room and writes her love notes and the third about the boy who has dumped her and she wants to burn his pictures and she fantasizes about trashing his apartment and licking all of his utensils and spitting into his mouthwash. all really well done, all fun, interesting songs w/ intelligent lyrics - but in 15 minutes we have the scope of this little girls life. three relationships that burn bright for a millisecond and flash out with broken hearts and boatloads of pain. that young, beautiful woman will be shattered by mid life with these kind of rotating door relationships.

i got to tell pink that even if you do get the boy who writes you love notes and scatters roses at your feet it lasts for a whole 10 minutes. liam and i had a wonderful courtship. but was it reality? 25 years later, if feels like about 10 minutes. i just long for her to balance out the dreamy romance with stories that form her into her whole self. stories that empower her. stories that open her up past the doors of the school and the dances and show her the vast world that is waiting for her.

that is why bands like superchick float my boat. it's not that they are "christian" - most of their songs have little to do with "jesus" specifically - but whole life, facing the hard places and moving through them. those are the kind of stories i long for her to hear.

Friday, June 20, 2008

stand in the rain

i.heart.super.chick

these lyrics just slay me.

listening to the new cd on newreleasetuesday.com

go listen!

Stand in the Rain

She never slows down
She doesn’t know why but she knows that
When she’s all alone it feels like its all coming down

She won’t turn around
The shadows grow long and she fears
If she cries that first tear, the tears will not stop raining down

So stand in the rain
Stand your ground
Stand up when it’s all crashing down
You stand through the pain
You won’t drown
And one day what’s lost can be found
You stand in the rain

She won’t make a sound
Alone in this fight with herself
And the fears whispering if she stands she’ll fall down

She wants to be found
The only way out is through everything
She’s running from, wants to give up and lie down

So stand in the rain
Stand your ground
Stand up when it’s all crashing down
You stand through the pain
You won’t drown
And one day what’s lost can be found
You stand in the rain

Thursday, June 12, 2008

book meme

penni at m2 tagged me for the book meme:

So here's Dr. Benton Quest's meme:
~
Step One – pull out a book on the book shelf.
Step Two – go to page 123.
Step Three – read and write out the 5th sentence.
Step Four – tag 5 more people.

5 people who haven't done this meme, i don't think it's possible, but i'll try (feel free to ignore if you're caught up in the end of school or beginning of summer crazies)

book - the last word (what i'm supposed to have finished for the end of school...) by nt wright:

pge 123 (do you know how many books don't even go to 123 pages! i had to grab 3 to get to one that did!) sentence 5:

"We cannot assume we are living an a Garden of Eden situation, a world without evil; so we cannot argue directly from "the way things are" to the "way things should be."

tagging: jennifer (ha, next meme assignment, got you back!:), hope, renee, chicken pax, sarah louise (dont' be offended if i didn't tag you, honest, i thought that i had probably already read the meme on your blog, and i was offended you didn't tag me - just kidding!) :)

Saturday, June 07, 2008

hope in generosity

in light of my rant yesterday about resentments this seems like a well-timed message from my higher power:

Hope in Generosity

I don't know anyone who doesn't wrestle sometimes with despair. News of the world is bleak. Global warming. Vanishing species. War. Terrorism. Poverty. It can be tempting to close the mind and harden the heart simply because the challenges that confront us seem overwhelming. What is hope in the face of so much bad news? In a time of turbulence and anxiety, generosity is one of the key spiritual practices that can keep us sane. Not only that, the practice of generosity may be one of the most powerful ways that we can bear witness to a hope that lies beyond despair.

Generosity begins with God. This means that we receive everything as gift---not just material possessions but everything that exists: this breath, this moment, and the moments we have until we die. Our capacity to think, feel, remember, and hope, our family and friends, the whole living breathing planet with its goldfinches and cougars, its foxes and salmon and birch trees---all of it is gift....

Margaret Bullitt-Jonas

via inward/outward

Friday, June 06, 2008

resentments - advice please??

12 steppers, please help. i am really struggling with a resentment and have realized that this is an area that i'm weak in - first of all identifying it, then what to do with it? i have dealt with close loved ones before with my resentments, but rarely with friends, especially friends who have no recovery.

this one just won't leave me alone and it involves a woman in our small group who i love, but is difficult. she is open and giving, but it seems the giving has strings, and they are usually financial. i am a naturally generous person. i don't say this in pride, it's really something i don't have to work at - i hold things very lightly, especially money and i can give away just about anything without strings and actual joy because i love that it might bless someone else like i have been blessed.

i keep running into interactions when she chooses to be cheap or nickels and dimes me and it's really starting to grate on me. they live in a financial world we could only dream of. i would willingly give her anything i have and when in community i always give my best. we don't skimp on the food we bring and actually go out of our way to be extravagant. we know this is a world of abundance and want to bless those we commune with - i am just finding it so hard to not let this build up in a way that makes a wall. i want to model abundance and not scarcity, but her scarcity mindset is wearing me down.

help. please. i have prayed. i have given generously hoping to set an example, i have asked god to take away the resentment and find release until the next interaction. i am afraid because i am beginning to want to be petty. i want to gossip and slander her - i want to show myself to be honorable and her to be stingy.

i am really struggling to do this the right way - but i don't know how to verbalize this to her without doing damage to the relationship. wisdom is needed - i'm not afraid to talk with her - i just want more light than heat - and i don't know that it's my place to talk with her - 12 steppers - please weigh in on this, i so don't want it to destroy the community we have. thank you!

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

random medicated update

well, it's official. i have an ear infection and a sinus infection, and a lovely bottle of antibiotics that will hopefully keep it all from settling in my lungs.

i guess the wheezing in my lungs is coming from the mold the plumber found in my walls after he tore open the back of my closet to get at my shower leak that had been emptying itself on the first floor entrance foyer... at least it didn't cost me the $414.70 - yikes! now we just have to get the landlord to approve the reno of tearing out our ONE shower stall and redrywalling it, find the guy who can actually do the work, and have time to do the work, and live with the spores until that is done... the hole is taped over with plastic, but the work was done right before we went away last week and now that i'm home sick i DON'T feel like doing all of the cleaning of our room that has to be done. ICK!

one nice surprise is that i have officially lost enough weight to use the NORMAL, REGULAR blood pressure cuff! i have never in my life had high blood pressure, but when my weight was up and they used a small cuff it gave a false read - so when i told the nurse today she needed the large cuff she grabbed my arm and said "oh no, your arm is small (SMALL!) enough for this one."!!!!! and she was right! that felt really nice.

our daughter pink leaves tomorrow for french immersion camp for 3 days. i really hope that she is healthy enough to go. she had quite a cough through the night last night, but woke up ready to go to school today. hope her cabin mates don't mind listening to it (actually hopefully it clears up and goes away).

some cool things from last week in random order... after i spoke the head of our quasi-denom here and his wife came up and gushed about my talk. she was tracking with me throughout the whole talk and was my barometer of how i was doing. he told me that he thought i was so eloquent, had an amazing speaking voice (i was so nervous and drugged that it's about an octave higher than normal and twice as fast on the recording) and said that i kept his attention for the whole time, and that he had a very short attention span! for this little brethren girl it helped a lot to know that the person there with the most "authority" (he'd balk at that term and is a very humble man) was so supportive of me.

next the president of our university approached me and told me of his own writing and how he longed to be able to tell his story of redemption, instead of just conversion - and asked ME to pray over him. ME. the president of the university. also a humble, beautiful man - but again, one with quite a bit of authority in our community. it was like god just said "here - just so you know there wasn't a problem" - what a gift. i'm still kind of in awe.

last week i had asked one of the women from our church to pray for my health so that i'd be able to be healthy enough to preach on sunday - and she did, and then kept praying. she used phrases like "help her to know her father loves it when she uses the gifts he gave her" and "know your father is jumping up and down cheering for you" - again, more affirmation to my little girl soul that i wasn't being naughty or rebellious - both things that came to mind a few times in preparation.

i don't know if any of this makes sense, i think i'm going to go and take a nap until the kids get home from school. thank you again for your prayers and support, it really is helping me to venture into this next place on my journey.