Wednesday, July 28, 2010


Libraries are, in my opinion, one of the greatest assets our country has going for it.  Our family takes full advantage,  as we're four avid readers.  Truly, one of the things I'm most thankful for is that my two kids enjoy reading.    Sometimes my daughter brings a book along on the ride to the grocery store.  This is usually a five minute ride, but hey, why not make the most of the time?  Here are a few excerpts from books I've recently checked out:

I was no prisoner, and yet, when faced with an occasion for determination, I was not to follow the lead of my will, but to endure in tedious familiarity.  What is freedom when you're too beholden to act spontaneously?  What is desire that is absolute but untimely?  Or obligation when you have ignored your soul's conviction?   
Is sacrifice really a virtue when in your heart you feel not a shred of devotion? 
{page 195 - Anthropology of an American Girl}

Looking out the window, I felt mostly lonely.  It was the kind of loneliness that cannot see past itself, a skulking suspicion that the world was not mine to inherit.  I listened as they spoke, laughed when they laughed, raised my glass as such moments presented themselves, all the while marking time.  I was sorry for the way everyone imagined my life to be my own, for the way they really did seem to like me, asking did my fish still have bones, and how pretty I looked.  I wished I could give something back.  But yet, I knew that all that they wanted from me was all that they needed from me, and that is a treacherous path to consent to travel, in the sense of suppressing things sought for the self.  That is to say,  
you being solely what others want you to be.
{page 261- Anthropology of an American Girl}

One danger of online blogs and social networking sites is that your daughter may not be expressing what she really feels.  She may instead by writing what she thinks will entertain or impress her peers who read it.  She might not even be aware of the difference.  She may not realize that what she says she is feeling isn't what she actually is feeling.   She subtly adjusts what she is writing to suit what she thinks her friends want to read.  
After a while, she may gradually become the girl she is pretending to be.
{page 38 - Girls on the Edge}

Here's a vegetarian recipe from 
Mediterranean Harvest, 
a cookbook authored by Martha Rose Shulman:
Summer Salad 

Book recommendations:  
Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
The Passion of Mary-Margaret by Lisa Samson
The Blackstone Key by Rose Melikan

Please send me your recommendations, too.   As long as they're not silly romance novels, or meat cookbooks, or uninspired writing popular amongst non-thinkers.

Monday, July 19, 2010

a day unforgotten

Every once in a while, we experience days we know we'll never forget.  Yesterday was such a day.

Not because anything crazy happened.  There were no catastrophic events.  No earthquake, or terrorist strike on American soil.  I didn't win the lottery.

But. . . . this weekend was the first time Jamie played guitar along with the Vineyard Community Church worship band.  He's played in the [youth] band, but never with the adult team.  He did great.  I'm very proud. 

Another memory bookmark that occurred yesterday was Chip's ordination with Vineyard. 

And in my mind these events bring our family full circle in a couple areas.

A year ago I didn't know if Chip would ever work in the ministry full time again.  There was a chance his calling had changed, that there wasn't a place for him, at least not for a while in our current circumstances.

I also didn't know if Jamie would be able to utilize his musical gifts in a worship setting for quite some time.  He had at our previous ministry location.  But it was small, his dad was the main guy, etc.  

But now the circle is complete.  And things feel right.  I have no doubts we're where we should be.  And for me, a wife and mom, that's a good thing.  Knowing my family is at the right spot on the road.  And knowing we're not alone on that spot.  Because we've traveled alone and that's not where I want to be. 

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Horse Mania

Horse Mania is here!
(click for link)

We live in Lexington, Kentucky, the Horse Capital of the World.  Which is why the World Equestrian Games are coming to Lexington this fall.  And despite the fact that it seems every major road in our town is torn up right now in preparation for the games, Allie and I have decided to at least celebrate Horse Mania.

Horse Mania is a public art project, consisting of 82 life-size fiberglass horses.  They've been placed around town, and Allie and I plan to see them all.  We also plan to photograph our adventure.

Allie acquired a copy of today's Lexington Herald Leader, which includes a map of where each horse is.  We start tomorrow with horses 58, 70 and 79, located at the airport.  Join us if you'd like.  It should be fun.

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Summertime Music - Life on Lansill

One of my favorite occurrences in Lexington, Kentucky, is the annual patriotic concert held at Gratz Park.  It was held last Friday evening, and our family attended, as usual.  It was a lovely time:  great weather, a nice variety of picnics foods, and fine music by the Lexington Philharmonic.  While I'm not the most patriotic person around, events like these are what America's all about, right?  A free concert, in the beautiful outdoors, with all types of people in attendance.  And don't forget the dogs.  Plus, the available porta potties included outdoor sinks this year.  A definite upgrade.

On Tuesday, we headed to Ecton Park for the weekly jazz concert.  We had a bit of difficulty finding a take out pizza on the way (no, I'm not joking!).  But, we eventually settled in for an evening of music and people watching.  We left at the intermission.

Wednesday was probably one of the top 5 days of summer, as far as son Jamie is concerned.  We visited CD Central and he purchased The Dead Weather's Sea of Cowards album.  When I say album, I mean album.  He purchased the vinyl record.  Apparently he's been anticipating this for quite some time.  He's converting it to his iPhone (I think that's the correct verbiage) as I type this. 

Today (Thursday), we wandered through the Habitat for Humanity Restore looked through the records and found - Johnny Cash's Folsom Prison Blues, a Maynard Ferguson, and a Chicago.  For a grand total of $2.29. 

Alas, there's a jazz concert tonight at Central Library, but it's not the greatest timing for us.  Jamie's heading to King's Island tomorrow and Chip is disk golfing this evening.  So, we'll pass this time around.

Earlier this week, Jamie sent me this link:   Maybe we'll just listen to them instead.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

50% Vegetarian Household

I was at Central Library here in Lexington a few weeks back.  If memory serves correct, it was Thursday, June 26.  The kids were out giving away popsicles in Woodland and Phoenix Parks with the Vineyard youth group.  I was in the library alone, and since I don't usually patronize this branch of the library, I decided to look around.  I came across a book, I can't remember the title, but it was one of those that talks about eating meat, stockyards, etc.  I opened it up, and read just a bit.  I've read this type of book before and I know the gist of it:  the meat industry is bad news.  

My daughter Allie became a vegetarian about 5 months ago.  She's stuck to it.  I'm proud of her convictions.  Since then, I've tried to be careful, tried to eat organic meat from animals that lived a happy life.  But I'm come to realize that's a difficult thing to do.  First of all, it's expensive and I truthfully can't afford to buy all my meat products at Good Foods or the Farmer's Market.  Not without a big financial sacrifice.  Secondly, it's difficult to eat 'carefully' in restaurants.  Most don't use 'organic' meat and my guess is it comes from stockyards and chicken farms and other unfriendly places.   Thirdly, it's just too much to think about:  Where'd the meat in this burger come from?  Is this Kroger chicken REALLY free range?  Should I indulge in a Christmas ham knowing the pig didn't live a quiet life on Old MacDonald's farm?  

So it hit me.  Right there in Central Library.  Give up meat.  Beginning July 1, give it a try.  Commit to 6 months of vegetarianism.  Be an encouragement to Allie.  See what it's like.  I didn't put a lot of thought into it.  I just made the decision, on the spot to do it.  July 1 thru December 31. 

So far, it's going well.  I haven't missed meat.  I know I'll miss the occasional barbecue meal.  I really like pulled pork and brisket with barbecue sauce.  I'll miss shredded beef burritos.  I'll have to learn to modify chicken pot pie this winter.  But, I really think it's for the best that I do this.  Allie is excited to have me on board.  My son Jamie actually said he's considering "meatless Mondays" and possibly giving up meat for Lent next year.  We've checked out lots of vegetarian magazines and cook books from the library.  It's a new adventure for us.