Sunday, August 31, 2014

the mouthy and the merciful

Mrs. Obama and her daughters
By some mystery, my browser homepage was changed to MSNBC recently, so rather than learn how to fix it I've been indulging in their glossy spin. It's fun to read news from an entirely different source than I would normally.

This blog post came through my email today, and it's gorgeous and convicting as usual. Pope Francis recently used the term 'a bitter zeal' in a homily, which apparently belongs to the ancient St. James. God save me from having a pretentious faith, because aside from the obvious blindness and harm to my own soul, that's no way to attract anyone to the Gospel. My dad always told me essentially this when I got flustered about interpersonal stuff --- it takes all different kinds of people to make the world go 'round. My father-in-law once said something similar to a friend of ours who was a new recruit for the APD (he himself being a veteran of LAPD), "Just put your head down and do your part". I had never heard that phrasing and was puzzled ~ didn't he mean hold your head high and go be a big bad cop? All good advice from men who have weathered four or five decades of getting stuff done in groups of fallible humans.

Speaking of the police, I met a guy last night who has been camped out in his car at the local grocery store. He ran out of meth a few days ago. He said he just hunkered down in a damp sleeping bag and kept passing out whenever he tried to read the Bible. Nearing desperation, he chased down a pair of cops who had previously tried to wake him up in the Carrs parking lot. He ran after them on foot, claiming he had drugs and that they had forgotten to search him. The officers were incredulous, but one took him under his wing, helped him toss his pipe, drove him to a late-night 12-step meeting, and has even employed him with odd jobs for the past few days. No paperwork was filed or charges pressed. I hope he keeps coming back. Father Martin gives a rousing ode to the prayers of a scared addict --- "Don't ever discount the prayers you said when you were drunk. A hurting heart is closest to God than any other. Those were the best prayers you ever prayed." That policeman has done something grand, humane, and risky. Soli deo Gloria.

Hoda & the lil' Giff taking breathalyzers
I can't even believe Dwija is considering moving. I wonder if the people who buy her house will be weirded out that there's an entire blog dedicated to their house? Funny quirk of living in the Internet age, you never quite know when you step on documented ground. Real estate sales involve those tiresome disclosure forms, about lead paint, crimes or malfunctions on the property. Sellers even have to disclose paranormal activity like suspected hauntings. I imagine those concerns will soon grow to include potential privacy violations or previous media exposure.

And I don't care much for the First Lady's chosen dress at her chef's wedding, PS! (although I liked how she and her girls were coordinated.)

Reading MSNBC reminds me of one winter when Anthony and I found ourselves in the habit of watching the Today Show every morning as we stared slack-jawed over coffee mugs at the frigid yard outside. The show's cacophony was warm, sedating and a little hedonistic (" Kathi Lee drinking Tanqueray at 6 a.m.? well, this is fun.") My husband sighed, "it's the dead of February and I feel like I'm trapped in a dentist's office, with old issues of People magazine come to life. Part of me is humiliated, and part of me never wants this to end." :)

But, look ~ here! Life can be simple, even when pierced by great evil.


Saturday, August 23, 2014

making peace with progress

Denali from Talkeetna
1) Our local newspaper has gone away, and I guess I still need to make a visit to their vault to get our four youngest 'Stork Report' clippings. When Vivian was born I remember being told that the newspaper office maintains a few copies of each day's newspaper indefinitely, and one can request them in person at the ADN office. Now that they've moved online, everything feels transient and like those newspapers could vanish. Like they take 'their duty to me' less seriously. Which I know is silly. It's been ten years and I'm probably never going there. But how dare they!

2) I signed up for a deductive reasoning class online with Duke University (I'm not a total curmudgeon about the internet, see?) and am excited to see what it's like.

3) We've crossed the threshold into Too Many Kids to attend the Alaska State Fair cheaply, even with our tricks (totally different bag of tricks than we used at the Ventura County Fair, way back when) --- so it looks like an undercover mission with our three oldest is in order. I hope to see photos. Just husband Anthony with Viva, Margaret & Veronica. --- no babies and no mom --- paaaaaaaarty.

4) Do you think it's impractical to invite Snoop Doggy Dogg to our 20-year high school class reunion this summer? I really want to.

5) One more link. Okay, two.

6) I might soon write a sex post and try to keep it as elegant and approachable as Simcha's lovely new book. Stay tuned for all that, DAD. hahaha. Um. I would never do that.

7) That wraps up my first attempt at 7 whoodly what whats, or however Jennifer calls it. She regularly slays it over here.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

I swear to you that I saw Woody Harrelson in a maroon 1987 Subaru GL wagon...

ray troll (looks like Ketchikan?)
at the corner of Crusey and the Parks Highway today. And my bra is filled with sand. Our summer is complete.

Monday, August 18, 2014

from the church bulletin

Older people are a special presence of God
among us. This is so, not only because old age
brings wisdom (it does not always do so), but

because the twilight of life is a time of extreme

refinement. The spirit becomes humble. There are

fewer idols. False illusions and false promises crumble and

this enables older people to become more perceptive. Old age

can be a very dark hour, but for this very reason, it can also be

the eve that ushers in life's Eternal Dawn.

oh, Internet.

Heather says Love is the Way:

more about this soon --- but it's a winner! Damn, I don't miss Facebook. I have made more face-to-face amends for stuff I've typed than any other area of my life. Growing isn't easy. But I'm so totally not giving up my preppy handbag. :)

Saturday, August 16, 2014

thank you, Allison Grace

Vivaldi says get to work, kids.
and each of the friends who tread with joy along this path. Teresa, Tana, Joy, Michele, Anne and your 45 (!) children, plus all the happy faces we continue to meet through your acquaintance.

wildflowers and marbles ~ she says it like you would, and *with lists*

for everyone who's drawn to this, not just homeschoolers : )