Monday, September 29, 2008

To Do Today

In an effort to get something accomplished today, I am posting my to do today list here!
  • water plants -- DONE (10:45 a.m.)
  • laundry -- DONE (3:45 p.m.)
  • balance checkbook ~ 3 months worth! -- DONE (3:45 p.m.)
  • vacuum -- DONE, what's going to be anyway (12:30 p.m.)
  • empty garbage throughout house -- DONE (12:30 p.m.)
  • file bank statements, etc.
  • thank you notes for baby gifts
  • take recycling to recycling center -- DONE (6:15 p.m.)
  • box up some items for charity
That doesn't look like so much when I write it. Now if I can just get to it!

ETA ~ if only I didn't think of more things each time I come to mark something off!

Saturday, September 27, 2008


This morning began at 4 a.m. I am NOT a morning person. I tried to coax Baby Girl back to sleep after she ate. I gave up on that at 5 and let her play on the floor while I tried to work on my sermon, which at that point consisted of the lectionary readings and a vague idea. When she fell asleep on the floor at 5:30 and I was falling asleep in the chair, we both went back to bed. I got up at 7 to really write and am making progress now at nearly 8 while she still sleeps.

But I made choices last night that I wonder about...

--Was it that Pepsi I drank before her final nursing session that woke her up in less time than she has been sleeping for most of this week? But she did sleep 6 hours straight, which was what she slept the night before. The rest of the week was 8-10 hours. I was hopeful that we had established that pattern.

--She was snuggly and sleepy last evening, so we snuggled on the couch for 3 hours before bathtime and eventual bedtime. Did I let her sleep too much too comfortably too close to bedtime? And more to the point today, should I have been working on my sermon instead of holding her when she was asleep? I loved every second of the snuggly time, her little chest against mine, her little head on my shoulder so I could sniff the sweet baby smell, the little arms falling in such a way that it felt like an embrace. She is such a gift from God, a promise of God's love, and a proclamation of good news to me. Unfortunately that doesn't translate into the sermon that the people need to hear--and while it makes me feel like a good mother, makes me feel like a bad pastor.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Friday Five ~ Johnny Appleseed

Raise your hand if you know that today is Johnny Appleseed Day!

September 26, 1774 was his birthday. Johnny Appleseed" (John Chapman) is one of America's great legends. He was a nurseryman who started out planting trees in western New York and Pennsylvania, but he was among those who were captivated by the movement west across the continent.

As Johnny traveled west (at that time, the "West" was places like Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, and Illinois) he planted apple trees and sold trees to settlers. With every apple tree that was planted, the legend grew. A devout Christian, he was known to preach during his travels. According to legend, Johny Appleseed led a simple life and wanted little. He rarely accepted money and often donated any money he received to churches or charities. He planted hundreds of orchards, considering it his sevice to humankind. There is some link between Johnny Appleseed and very early Arbor Day celebrations.

So, in honor of this interesting fellow, let's get on with the questions!

1. What is your favorite apple dish? (BIG BONUS points if you share the recipe.)
I love a simple Cortland apple--which for some reason I can't find at grocery stores around me. I also love homemade applesauce (from the Cortlands)...wash, cut, leave the peel on, boil in a little water until soft and mushy, grind (best to do by hand in a food mill as opposed to a blender). Eat warm. Love it!

2. Have you ever planted a tree? If so was there a special reason or occasion you can tell us about?
Growing up, we had 2 pear treas, 1 cherry tree, and 5 apple trees. :) I remember planting some of them. The 5 apple trees were 4 different varieties--Spartan, Yellow Transparent, Golden Delicious, and 2 Cortlands.

3. Does the idea of roaming around the countryside (preaching or otherwise) appeal to you? Why or why not?
Maybe some roaming, but not preaching. I love to travel. I don't like preaching where I'm not part of the community.

4. Who is a favorite "historical legend" of yours?
Apparently I don't have one--I'm having a hard time thinking of one. Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox?

5. Johnny Appleseed was said to sing to keep up his spirits as he traveled the roads of the west. Do you have a song that comes when you are trying to be cheerful, or is there something else that you often do?
What to do when trying to be cheerful--hmm...not really sure. What did I do before Baby Girl? Because now I can I look at her beautiful face and try to get her to smile and giggle. That's the best sight in the world!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Why I Never Get Anything Done

Recently, I've realized something about myself. If I start a project, I want to be able to finish it--in a short period of time, if not immediately. I don't want to be interrupted. Of course, interruptions are unavoidable--I know this. But I paralyze myself with the potential for interruptions. Such as, "I can't start writing that blog post because I'll just get it started and Baby Girl will wake up and be hungry." Silly example, but as I look around at the piles and mess that is my house now, it certainly fits for those other things too!

Today is a work at home day, so while Baby Girl is sleeping, I better do some of that. Before I get interrupted!

Friday, September 12, 2008

The Never-Ending Story: Chapter Four

This is a meme that Ruth started to create A Never-Ending Story. I have written a Chapter Four based on RevDrKate's Chapter Three. You are invited to either write a Chapter Five from here or take off from someone else's previous chapters. If you want to do a Five from this one, here are the rules: Put a link to this post. Label the Link "Chapter Four." and to Ruth's "Chapter One." Write your own installment and label it "Chapter Five." Remember to leave it unresolved. Come leave a comment on this post when you're done. If you want to follow one of the other threads, head on over to Ruth's blog where there is a box dedicated to this meme. You can find links to all the chapters in process and pick a thread to follow.

Chapter Four

Unconsciously I reached for my coffee, but my hands continued to shake and I promptly spilled it all over the front page of the newspaper. “Pull yourself together,” I said to myself as I gathered up the paper to throw it in the trash. “You need to get ready for work.”

As I went about my morning routine, I couldn’t help but be preoccupied. My daddy died when I was eight years old and I had spent many years trying to put the circumstances of his death out of my mind. Like most children who have lost parents, I had to deal with his absence over and over throughout my life. There were so many “should have” moments—moments that he “should have” been there for. I missed him when I learned to drive, when I brought home my first boyfriend, when I graduated from high school, when I bought my home after I landed my job and M&F Insurance. I had learned how to handle those moments, but I still couldn’t quite come to terms with the intricacies of his death.

Mother didn’t like to talk about those days and as I got older I had more and more questions. I learned very quickly that I should keep those questions to myself. And now Jim Hartman’s phone call brought all of those questions back—starting with the day Daddy died.

I remembered that day. After the phone call that left Mother pale and shaking, she took me by the shoulders. “You need to be a brave and good girl. Daddy’s been,” her voice wavered and she seemed to struggle to find the words. “Daddy’s been in an accident. I need to go see to him.”

Mother and Daddy had rarely left me home alone. “I don’t know how long I will be. If you get hungry, you may make yourself a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. Have an apple and some milk too. Do not answer the phone or the door. You may watch TV until I get home.”

“But...” I started to say.

“Be a good girl,” Mother said, “I will be home as soon as I can.”

I fell asleep watching TV that night and as I woke up, I could hear Mother whispering on the telephone. Even half asleep, I knew I wasn’t supposed to hear, but I heard bits of Mother’s conversation. “…a guard outside his room…yes, there was a gun…multiple shots…a gambling scheme…he must have been involved…no, I don’t know the details…he never regained consciousness, Jim said.”

“Jim said,” I suddenly said aloud. That thought snapped me out of the fog as I pulled into my parking space. I looked around at the empty parking lot. “Damn, it’s a holiday. M&F is closed today.”