Monday, July 31
Cheeky got me again...
Because Cheeky is suffering from both the itchies and the ouchies (and might I add, also, a woman's rightful vanity), I am now making the time to play tag. While I'm writing, I'll be thinking about who to get next :). My babies are sleeping LATE, so, there's no time like the present.

When did you first start blogging?

I started writing in September but didn't give out my link until March. Very sporadic during that time, feast or famine. Now, it's usually more feast than famine.

What don't you talk about?

Although I use my family's real first names, I'll never use last. My brother totally freaks that I "give out" as much information as I do, but I'm banking on y'all not caring enough to stalk me (lol). I don't talk politics because frankly, 1) I'm apolitical and 2) in light of #1, what could I possibly add to the conversation that's not already being said, and by those MUCH more knowledgeable than lil' ol' me? 3) My blog is PG for the most part. Yeah, I'm spicy...yeah, there are times I'd like to be edgier or at times even profane, but my kids are reading along. Oh, and since I have issues with my tongue anyway, I try always to keep in mind I'm a child of the King.

Are you and your blogging persona the same person?
Sure, I've always written the way I speak. I'm ADD when it comes to talking--and writing--I like to conversation juggle, "convuggle". Shelly calls it "webbing", streams of thought that are all over the place. Sometimes I do use bigger more precise words here, lol; although friends have mocked me about my vocabulary ("that sounds like a word Robin would use" it a dis? probably, but I'll choose to believe it's a compliment ;) AND I'll dumb the conversation down for them, figuratively speaking, of course! ).

How do you use blogging to build friendships?
Honestly, I don't like this question. I don't "use" blogging to build friendships, in its simplest form, blogging is an OUTLET. That being said, I have been surprised--pleasantly so--that has occurred. I didn't anticipate it. I have found women to be extremely warm and generous in explaining how all this works. I had no idea this "parallel universe" existed until a year ago! And there are those of you who ARE becoming friends, who woulda thunk it? Not me!
How would you describe your writing style?
I think I already answered this. It's pretty random and conversational. I'm neither a comedian nor a theologian, but humor and faith, and marriage and family (and relationships in general) are important forces in my life, so those are the things you'll find me writing about most often. This is my stage for exercising my drama queendom :). Y'all can choose to attend the show or not; at least admission is free;)

I'm tagging Malissa (cause she's so sweet), and mother/daughter bloggers Pamela & Karmyn. If anyone else picks up the game, lemme know so I can visit you, too!

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 31, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (10)

Don't miss this one!
Picked this up over at Anna Venger. Her tagline is "Because Everyone is Entitled to My Opinion!" Someone with that kind of moxie has gotta have a blog worth reading, and she does. Here's what she said, so I figured why re-invent the wheel? I woulda just restated what was already said quite well.

"Click here to view the clip, "De-Deification of the American Faithscape", a very funny piece from Stephen Colbert in which he recites the Nicene Creed in the interest of disclosure, pokes some fun at Unitarians, and posts a nifty little chart to demonstrate loving interfaith relationships (not)...."

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 31, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (2)

Friday, July 28
I got nothin'..........
It's Blogging Chicks Carnival time and this week's theme is "Favorites". EVERYTHING that's crossing my mind to write about is tired and unoriginal and probably written better elsewhere. Perhaps this is due to sleep deprivation. With Rachel and Tad on their father/daughter adventure, I'm staying up REALLY late. This is to assure I'll be in a dead sleep when someone breaks into my house, I really don't need to know that's happening until it's "over".

Then again, the trained rottweiler ("Damien") parading our grounds and the six-foot pet boa constrictor ("Judas") let loose in the house at night will take care of anyone with "ideas".

So, I figured since I blogged for months without giving out my link, I'd share one of my favorite old posts. This always makes me grin when I just think about it...the Southerners will really get it :).

Click HERE for more of Blogging Chicks'
"My Favorite Things" on this week's Carnival ride!

  Into the pensieve on Friday, July 28, 2006
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Thursday, July 27
Power of Persuasion, revisited
You are a person of influence. just are!

Whether or not you realize it or believe it to be true.

There will be times you recognize your influence, perhaps most visibly in your children, if you're a parent. Other places that "scream" influence are in the workplace (which for some, I guess, is in the home, too).

However, I'm convinced the ripple effect of your actions is more influencial than you (or I) will ever realize in this life. Not just in the big things, but in the small.

When Erin was here for a visit with her family, she helped me cook dinner. One of her "jobs" was shucking corn, something I've done a thousand times. She heated it in the microwave first, and the silks practically jumped off the cob......much easier than without nuking them. I do it every time we have fresh corn now (and think of her...and smile).

When I was at the beach trolling a bookstore for a good summer read, a COMPLETE STRANGER recommended a book she LOVED. Her enthusiasm was compelling; I bought and consumed the book in two days. She, in turn, bought one I suggested as perfect for beach reading. Amazing to me that both of us would be motivated by someone we didn't know, as if each other's opinions were somehow similar to our own. We were willing to bank on a complete stranger! (For the record, I enjoyed the book despite its somber content, and was amused to see this author "all over the place"--when before I had never noticed her. I hope my "friend" at the book store enjoyed her purchase as much as I did mine).

Isabel was here for a visit recently and her lips looked BEAUTIFUL! I am much too lazy to wear lipstick regularly, but hmmm, Tad notices when I do ;), so maybe I should reconsider that. Anyway, I asked Izzy "what she did" to get that look. Dang it! It cost me, lol. First, the lip brush--coolest one I've ever seen! The brush retracts into the handle, no lid necessary (so the bristles don't get scrunched and displaced when you put the top on). The second step (after applying your favorite lipstick, which I guess is actually the second step, so this will be the third, but then again, who's counting besides me?) is careful application of lip glass. Now I realize this sounds like a pain in the butt for lipstick-wearing neophytes, but I'm telling you, ya want sexy lips? It's more than worth the effort :D. I figured this was a kind of investment that had a n i c e return ;).

I've written about this before, back when I was an invisible blogger (lol). Once again, it causes me to consider how I'm influencing others. I've seen places where I'm a "tone setter", and sometimes I KNOW I've been a (gulp) less than stellar influence, where I've initiated a sequence of events that didn't have the most favorable outcome (now THAT'S a way to sugar coat stupidity!). Instead, this has become both a challenge and prayer for me (my emphasis added):

"...let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold unswervingly
to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds.
Let us not give up meeting together,
as some are in the habit of doing,
but let us encourage one another..."
Hebrews 10:22~25

  Into the pensieve on Thursday, July 27, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (2)

Wednesday, July 26
Man vs. Beast
95 feet tall
2,970 feet long
Top speed ONLY 50 freakin' MPH
Duration: 1 minute 48 seconds

Beast won......

and that TICKS me off like you wouldn't believe!

I WAS GOING to be a barbarian. I WAS GOING to be the mom my boys remembered as blowing their minds, conquering my fear of roller coasters AND heights, riding all the rides WITH them, leaving them in a state of utter disbelief and complete admiration.

First one in the park felt like it beat the ever-loving crap outta me. Literally. Forget the fear of heights, no worries about losing your stomach. Instead, my brains were shaking like smoothies in a blender, and my back and neck were being assalted with bats and broom handles. Thomas looked back and thought I was having a heart attack.

I didn't say a word; no need to scream.... I was praying I wouldn't be rendered a paraplegic by the end of the ride--my sons would need a way home, and since their dad and sister are on the other side of the world right now (okay, the country), it had to be me.

The upside? I DID get points for surprising them with a spur of the moment trip, AND for at least trying to conquer the coasters, AND they had "an AWESOME time!"

I've taken Tylenol...I'm headed to bed. Up since 4:15 a.m., sweating cannonballs since 11:00, having my usually-summer-liberated feet confined all day in tennie pumps...I don't think ANYTHING sounds better than SLEEP right now.

  Into the pensieve on Wednesday, July 26, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (11)

Monday, July 24
If you're a WO-MAN...
...or a husband of one, mark your calendar. You'll want to attend (or make plans for your wife to attend).

The fall Youniquely Woman conference, that is. It's a kind of "finishing school" for adult women (18-45), and I have to admit, I was compelled to attend its pilot program in the Spring. Compelled and yet VERY skeptical. Suffice it to say, my expectations (whatever they were) were FAR exceeded. Speakers/leaders include Emilie Barnes, Donna Otto (two sites to check out) and Kay Arthur. The dates are October 17-21 and it's worth the time and money. More than worth it.

Emilie's site describes it as "A powerful week of teaching and training women in all facets of being a woman," and I'd agree with emphasis on the word "all". This is stuff women aren't hearing in general--not even in "the church". Very much Titus 2 being lived out; Kay, Donna and Emilie didn't just teach and disappear, they were out there with us, spending the week listening and sharing their lives and experiences. NEVER pretending perfection, just sharing practical insight and even some of their mistakes. Amazingly unpretentious. I guess if you know anything about any of these women, you'll know whatever they say comes out of their relationship with Christ--everything is Biblically based.

This translates into positive transformation for those in attendance...I cannot imagine anyone not being changed as a result. Here are a few thoughts I had at the time--here, here and here.

"Many daughters have done nobly, But you excel them all."

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 24, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (13)

Sunday, July 23
and just generally cracking up!

So I picked this up from Scot McKnight at Jesus Creed who I THOUGHT picked it up from Dan Kimball at Vintage Faith, but I musta read it wrong. No matter, while I read those two for "serious stuff" and all things emerging, I fell outta my chair on this one! Oh, you know how much I LOVE TO LAUGH OUT LOUD??? You gotta click the first link if you click nothing else. And by gotta, I MEAN GOT....TO!

Ciao...need to go blow my nose and wipe the tears from my eyes.........

Can't help but think about Cheeky and her propensity for dancin'... I know this has been around awhile--66,000+ hits!--but I hadn't seen it before. The only thing it was missing was a Flashdance "Maniac" segment.... Curious, though, what was your favorite part?

  Into the pensieve on Sunday, July 23, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (10)

Clickin' with the Chicks, summer-style
Image and video hosting by TinyPic Shop again, shop often.

  Into the pensieve on Sunday, July 23, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (4)

Friday, July 21
...we have a winner and a subsequent BIG THANKS to Michele over at Life Under the Sun for giving me the VERY SIMPLE answer to my whining question. No thanks at all to Cheeky at Snow Trapped Southern Girl, who did nothing but tease me;)!

And, E-bay, if you're checking's coming :)

  Into the pensieve on Friday, July 21, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (7)

It's been so stinkin' good... summer, that is. And for this, I cannot begin to express how thankful, truly thankful, I am to be able to say this. Summer 2006 will go down as one of the best ones of my life because everything has been just about as good as it gets. In spite of the imperfections, perhaps made sweeter because of them.

As I write those words, it occurs to me many cannot say that. Several heart-wrenching situations come to mind, beginning with people in my own "sphere". Two people I love dearly will have marriages ending by Fall :(. For two others (not as close to me), this may be the last summer they have with their elementary-age children, both struggling with illnesses that eventually will take their lives :( :( :(.

So I do not write this boastfully...I write it with a content heart, full--no, overflowing--with joy and gratefulness.

We moved here three years ago from a place we called "home" for over 14 years. We were young marrieds, DINKs (haven't heard that one in forever!); slowly building a life, pursuing and finding both meaningful relationships and ministry. We had three children and enjoyed watching them grow, and we "lived life" with others doing much the same. Roots, well nurtured and fed, were growing deeply.

I could write volumes about that, lol, but it's not the point here. The bottom line is God clearly, finger by finger, loosened our grip on that place and those people. "Objects" that at one point were in some way idols. Perhaps even following us to Tennessee.

This was going to be a big adventure...I approached our move with a bittersweet eagerness and expectancy, arms open wide. Even then, I saw God's direction for us as I looked back over the then-previous five years or so, and saw how He was preparing us and loosening that tightly-clenched fist.

But wouldn't you know, in typical "my ways are not your ways" form, God led us on a great adventure (allowed one to take place?), just not the one I would have willingly signed up for. Two people for whom initiating relationship and minstry comes quite naturally, all of a sudden found themselves incapable of finding either. We left a place where we were "big fish in a little sea" and found ourselves....ummm...plankton in the Pacific Ocean. We felt we couldn't get even footing, every conversation was WORK and only happened if we initiated it with STRANGERS (who couldn't have cared less about us). And then the spiritual desert came (for me), in spite of attending two Bible studies, regular Sunday morning worship, and my kids in a Christian school. The move was hard for Tad, too, but since he's not the blogger, I won't go into any of his stuff. Obviously, his stuff had effect on my stuff and visa versa.

Ah, but I can sooo see the Romans 8:28 of it NOW. I learned what God wanted out of me. I think I did sooo much self-examination, I became an idol to myself...does that make sense? Too much of a good thing (maybe a not-so-good thing). My focus was so inward, on what needed to be changed in me, that I lost the focus on God. I am thankful He exposed the darkest parts of my heart, that I could see the depths of my own depravity, that for the first time, I saw myself as a sinner saved by GRACE, in spite of my sin, and in spite of any perceived "goodness" I thought I had. I always gave tons of lip service to the righteousness of Christ, but maybe for the first time, I knew there was nothing "good" in me apart from Him.

I think this clarity started a little over a year ago, and it's been becoming clearer ever since.

Our first summer here was dreaded! We were on the road as much as we could be, going back to SC whenever possible. And having lots of company from there, here. Anything to keep from remembering how lonely we were. Summer two, last year, some of the same. By that time, we had made some family friends, my children enjoyed time with their friends, and Tad's job changed (what we would soon discover, for the better).

This summer is our third one, and for the first time, I didn't dread it. When I went back to our hometown a few weeks ago, I came back here and told Tad, "It's the first time I recall (after visiting) NOT wanting to move back." Before, homesickness would always follow a trip there.

I have delighted in my children this summer :). I have not had any "alone" time since school was out--I've been with Tad or the kids basically every day....and I LOVE time alone in our house, so that is saying A LOT ( sanity is somewhat still intact). Our kids, rising 4th, 6th & 8th graders, are at the easiest stages, perhaps, they'll ever be. Self-sufficient, but still thinking we're "great". We've had some great conversations and, quite unexpectedly, have discovered a new passion for playing gin :).

The summer included a Hilton Head tradition with Frankie & Christi & their family (six years straight? seven?); precious time with Erin and Gina (yes, my SC homegirls) and their children--beachfront at Edisto FOR FREE (waahoooo!), and our annual trek to GOD'S COUNTRY, which included hours on the beach, boogie boarding in the Atlantic, miles of bike rides, tons of alligator sightings (and deer and raccons and birds and deer!), and a wonderful visit with my college roomie and her hubby, and even some other SC friends vacationing nearby. Some sweet times with our extended family beginning with the first-ever reunion of Tad's family, a visit to the lake shack ;) with my sister and her crew (they hooked us on gin, rigging a tourney between our families, thinking THEY had the upper hand since they actually knew how to play...when the smoke cleared after a day of serious matches, WE were the victors......muuuuuhaaaahaaaaa!). Some dear SC friends even paid a visit here. And I've finished half a dozen books, and am somewhere in the midst of half a dozen more ;).

AND...the best part? We were always ready to get back here...HOME. And have our friends HERE for dinner, laughing wayyyy past bedtime because time flew...and wanting to get back to our Sunday morning community (aka adult SS) because THAT is where we're living life--loving God and loving people.

Tad and Rachel are headed for a father/daughter trip out west next week, and I cannot wait for THAT adventure to unfold! It's in honor of her 13th birthday, and I don't know which of them is more excited--Tad has had a blast planning it, and she cannot wait--horseback rides, rafting on the Snake River, canoeing in the Grand Tetons, camping in Yellowstone (if they can get in) and experiencing a part of the country she has never seen. Knowing in advance that this will be one of her life thrills FOREVER is impossible to put into words. I sit here unable to express the emotions within...a million different thoughts and yet so difficult to convey. As a mom (and wife), I am simply...thankful. For a husband and the ones I have. Not perfect, but perfect for me :).

Of course, everything hasn't been so PollyAnna; perhaps the most difficult challenge continues to be the on-going difficulties associated with my dad's Lewy Bodies disease. And we'd always hope to move closer to family eventually.

But you know what? I'm savoring these won't be like this forever, so for the moment, I cherish this "place". And when the going gets a little rocky again...because it WILL get rocky again, I hope I remember my silent plea-through-prayer over the last year or so: if God isn't going to change the circumstances, may He change ME through them....and may I know Him more intimately as a result :).

  Into the pensieve on Friday, July 21, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (11)

Thursday, July 20
Stuff I learned from blogging this week.......
- Definitions of SAHM and blinkies
- There's no such thing as the emerging church, but yet there is (BIG grin)
- How to compress a picture (for my profile pic which has severe size limitations)
- People who don't blog are critical/skeptical/think it's a waste of time...yet, like watching a trainwreck, they're drawn into it...
- Men in touch with their "sensitive side" blog (feel free to define what that is)
- What "prescient" means
- There are a lot of kindreds in the blogosphere
- Bloggers are doggone funny and smart. Well, some of 'em
- I HAVE to alternate days for reading and writing...or keep both of 'em more brief than I'd like to (unless I'm zipping out something with this kind of depth.......)
- I hate my blogger template and I STILL can't figure out how to do a line through my words and THAT makes me feel pretty idiotic

Blogging is definitely educational :)

  Into the pensieve on Thursday, July 20, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (8)

Wednesday, July 19
Brownie Points
My husband noticed that one of my very colorful handmade bracelets (see #9) was no longer on my wrist the day after it was no longer on my wrist. Heck, I didn't even notice it wasn't there until I saw it on the floor. A bit sad and trying to figure out how to re-tie the durn thing....

This is why I could never be the type of wife who buys things and hides them in the closet. He sees all new things. I wish I was this observant. I'm not...he is. So I don't try.

Then again, the above sentence was talking about, the bargain crap--THAT, I can hide (I mean save until I need it) (how the heck do you write the words with a line through 'em??? Whoever tells me first wins a prize!)


  Into the pensieve on Wednesday, July 19, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (2)

Monday, July 17
Flickr ROCKS!
Robin is smiling. She's doing a happy dance (you know the one, think Snoopy with his nose in the air, feet a'twirlin'). She finally figured out a way to upload her new profile pic. And it only took 20 minutes. A good thing...a very good thing!

Now, if she could just re-design her Blogger template in the same amount of time, she'd be doing back handsprings (never mind the fact THOSE haven't been attempted in...ummmm, over 25 years).

Flickr is her new best friend du jour.

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 17, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (4)

Sunday, July 16
You can walk like a duck...
but click like a chick;)

  Into the pensieve on Sunday, July 16, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (4)

Friday, July 14
Dreamin' in technicolor with the Bloggin' Chicks

Carnival time at Blogging Chicks. Dream theme...hmmmm.

My first thought was "Do I dare tell "them" my DREAMS?!" Ummm, I guess I don't have the corner on the market, but most of the time my nighttime dreams are FUN, in technicolor, and I hate to wake up from 'em. And often realistic at the same time (wahooo!). And yeah, I dream every night and eventually remember most of them if I try...sometimes when I don't.

Second thought was "Do I share my dreams of hope and future aspiration?" Those things I most desire for our family, our children.......myself? Now THAT would take some serious contemplation...and then TIME to write. Frankly, I don't have it right now, so I tabled that for down the road.

Third, I thought something about MLK, Jr's "I have a dream" speech. What a picture of hope and aspiration! That's better known, but his "Letter from Birmingham Jail" is amazing and worth your time to read on at least an annual basis.

But this is what I came up with instead. I'm dreaming all the Blogging Chicks (and friends, and friends of friends--wait, this isn't MySpace!) will visit my blog and post a freakin' comment. It'd be GREAT fun if they'd pick up this tag so we could get to know each other a bit better (if you've already done it, your post could be a link to your meme).

Cheap shot, ain't it? It's all I got when I've been outta town and have to hurry to get this in to Michele. I'm like Malissa--loving it when you stop by and let us know. It's how all good blogships begin ;).

Is this the ultimate in blog whoredom or what?! Can I say that?? O:-)

  Into the pensieve on Friday, July 14, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (21)

Thursday, July 13
Rediscovering a long, lost love
As a child I was a voracious reader, so much so, I can remember my father being concerned I read TOO much (I think he envisioned a very mousy, bun-coiffed librarian who peered over granny glasses constantly "shushing" the children). One of my favorite winter memories is sitting on top of the floor heating grates in our house, swaddled in a scratchy, woolen, rose-colored blanket, a slowly-melting bowl of chocolate ice cream in hand, with a new Nancy Drew in my lap. I'm smiling as I write this because I can still see and smell and feel and almost taste this recollection. Oh, and I was partially hidden because this cozy spot was behind a chair in a corner of our den.

How much do I love that my daughter is much the same? I often say she's never met a book she didn't like, and she has read hundreds of thousands of pages, I really don't think that's an exaggeration. Barely into her teen years, she has an over 200-volume library, and she's fastidious about their care (ummm, I'm doing my best to ensure she doesn't become anal or o/c about far, so good). (Warning: gushing mom alert) She broke the Accelerated Reader record at her school, earning over 750 points; and get this, she didn't even test on everything she read because she "didn't need to". We don't share the same concern my father did because she does have other interests, and as she gets older, school and those interests demand more of her time.

But, gee, this post isn't about her, lol, guess that's me in typical form--digressing.

Since I'm digressing, I have to say, I LOVELOVELOVE MaryEngelbreit's art, featured here. With a stroke of her brush, she captures the affections and passions of those souls who are truly friends with their books.

Somewhere along the way, I guess during my college years, "reading to learn" took precedence over reading for pleasure. Except for the trashy summer novels I devoured, which were probably limited anyway, due to the trashy magazines which occupied time and space. And then I graduated and started married...continued working...and had babies. In the midst of all that, I think I just gave up. I still managed a summer read or two, and maybe about the same number over the course of the rest of the year. I really don't remember why. Maybe it was back to "reading to learn" know, all those parenting resources available to us. Oh, yeah, and there were the Bible studies. Guess all that IS "reading", even good and worthy, but it's just not the same. If you're a blogger, you like the written word as much as I do, so I'm sure y'all know what I mean.

Since we moved to 10-afreakin-C, let's just say there weren't as many demands on my time. I guess in large part because I was no longer juggling three very-part-time jobs (two of which involved writing), my children were older, therefore more self-sufficient, and I guess the biggie, I didn't have a life here yet.

And slowly, it occurred to me I had the time to read again. At first, I kind of felt guilty about it, like I should be doing something else (ummm, some of the time, I SHOULDA been doing something else). But, wow...after having gone without it for so long, I sooo appreciate it now. Something simple, taken for granted, but rediscovered and now viewed in a different light.

A big surprise has been my newfound enjoyment of non-fiction. Perhaps because I don't have to read it, I'm able to relish it. Another HUGE unexpected turn (and DELIGHT) has been the husband's developing interest in reading. HE is the guy who prided himself in NEVER taking a book home his senior year in highschool, and still making all A's (I think....). Reading the newspaper or Sports Illustrated was about as long as his attention span would allow. Now, one of our favorite outings as a family is to hit Barnes & Noble, settle in with a CARAMEL MACHIATO and something new (or new to us, anyway)! Tad has actually begun to recognize the authors who borrow from each other ;).

Our Kiawah trip was great in part because I started--and FINISHED--three books: one fiction, one non-fiction and a biography. That, in addition to reading the gospels of Mark and John (and part of "plan" was to read all four), several chapters in Love and Respect and beginning Raising a Modern-Day Knight. A lot of the reading time was in the car, it is a seven-hour ride :) (thanks to Tad for not seeming to mind me not talking quite so much :D).

Gotta close with a mini-review of Father Joe, can't believe I've let it sit on the shelf for close to two years! An old friend convincingly recommended it back then, and when I saw it at our favorite used bookstore for four bucks, it was mine! But, because it wasn't the only find that day, it went to the bottom of the stack. It caught my eye again when I was making my beach'm glad it did.

Can you visualize sitting down for a meal just because it was time to eat, and as you took the first bite, you realized you were absolutely and unexpectedly ravenous...and on top of that, you weren't just eating chicken du jour, instead there was a banquet before you overflowing with every delicacy imaginable...? THAT, was Father Joe. I devoured it but wish I had taken time to savor it. Author Tony Hendra is a brilliant writer; this is a guy who won a partial scholarship to Cambridge by "accident". By page 28, there were so many words I didn't know, I started writing them down. Forty-eight of them (I mean really, carapace? alacrity? plastial? scrofulous? sozzled? morganatic? meretricious? abattoir? hehe, I made up one in the list just so I could bamboozle the highbrows who claim to know 'em all--without cheating, can you pick the word that's not a word?).

The thing is, the prose rolled off of Hendra's pen like mercury in your palm, smoothly and beautifully, and the fact I didn't know every tenth word didn't matter. His was a moving tribute to Joseph Warrillow, a Benedictine monk who altered the course of his life. Father Joe was Love Incarnate; he was the kind of "Christian" I'd like to be. Hendra's power of recall demonstrate the effect of their relationship in his life, Joe's words brought hope and healing to a wounded soul. The power was not in Father Joe's words, it was vested in Joe's own love and devotion to God, which seeped out and covered those in Joe's presence. Tony Hendra's lifestyle, sometimes more so than others, would be easy for some to condemn; through the eyes of Father Joe his is a poignant story of love and redemption. I joined them with tears in my own eyes as they offered what both knew would be their final good-byes.

Man, it was good...and as I look back up at ME's poster, I agree with her--"A book IS a present you can open again and again".

  Into the pensieve on Thursday, July 13, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (7)

Wednesday, July 12
Tag! I'm IT!
Well, my hubby thinks I'm "all that", but I never knew I was "It"...that is, til Cheeky tagged me. She thinks I'm a hoot (hehe) and since it is very late and I've had a loooonnnnnngggggg day, I think my answers could be interesting (and not at all how I'd respond if this was written, say, during my peak brain time, early in the morning with a LARGE cuppa joe).

If you wanna get to know me a bit better, read on...if not, then MOVE ALONG!

1. The book nearest me - Raising a Modern-Day Knight (Robert Lewis) & Vanishing Acts (Jodi Picoult)
2. Stretch out your left arm, what do you touch? - a taupe metal filing cabinet...I am NOT at my house
3. Last thing watched on television? -My Name is Earl ...if you haven't watched this, you are missing out on some of the funniest stuff on TV. Soooo thankful we TiVo it (or at least Tennefreakinsee's version of TiVo) so we can replay all of Jaime Pressly's fast-talkin'-messed-up-ness.
4. Without looking what time is it? 12:17
5. What is the actual time? 12:05...that's after midnight and I am not responsible for what I'm writing after the clock strikes 12.
6. With the exception of the computer what can you hear? a clock ticking...and music in another room
7. When did you last step outside? 10:47 p.m. What can I say? I looked at the clock as I headed to the door.
8. Before this survey what did you look at? DesertPastor's blog.
9. What are you wearing? - Three colorful braided bracelets, my wedding rings, two toe rings and Caliente on my toesies. Oh, yeah, and my Master's tee shirt & cargo shorts. (I tried to find a picture of Caliente polish only to discover IT'S DISCONTINUED....grrrr, figures I'd pick the one I REALLY like but won't be able to get again...!)
10. Did you dream last night? - Of course. In color. Not tellin, but VERY realistic ;) and better than anything on tv or film........
11. When did you last laugh? - Ok, this is NOT the last time I laughed, but it is the last time I absolutely lost it....Watching Earl, I saw a preview for "Talladega Nights: The Ballad of Ricky Bobby with Will Ferrell. Looks like a TOTALLY asinine flick, but it cracked me up. Last time I laughed that hard at a preview was for Dodgeball--"If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball!" Tagline on "Ricky Bobby" is "the story of a man who could only count to #1".
12. What is on the walls in the room? - Absolutely nothing....did I mention I'm not at my house?
13. Seen anything weird lately? - Does an 8' alligator between the ladies tees on the 17th hole at Turtle Point sound wierd? At Kiawah, it's pretty normal, anywhere else I'd say it's wierd.
14. What do you think of this quiz? - I have to think?
15. What is the last film you saw? - Dead Man's Chest
16. Tell me something we don't know - I have a small, heart-shaped birthmark on my hand; when I was a kid, I'd sometimes drew a red line around it to make it more defined.
17. If you could change one thing about the world, what would you do? - I'd give every kid a mom and a dad who love each other for life. I bet we'd have world peace then.
18. Do you like to dance? - Robin...Dance? lol absolutely :). Aside from flyin' solo in my kitchen, can't remember the last time I did :/ a GREAT memory of my college dayz with my favorite dance partner Harry Pirie who could actually LEAD. Me likey slow dancin' with the hubby though ;) And now, I'm lol-ing b/c I'm thinking of a funny Baptist joke...guess I'll keep THAT one to myself!
19. George Bush? - I'm apolitical.
20. Imagine your first child is a girl -, she was, is....
21. Imagine your first child is a boy - I always wished I had an older brother when I was younger so I could practice kissing his friends. Which just disturbs me to think about now.
22. Would you consider living abroad? - I am a broad! he he, Sure, as long as I didn't have to fly to get there.
23. What would God say to you when you reach the pearly gates? - Hey look skinnier in person! (I hope He says "Well done...")
23. 6 people who will do this quiz - Great...I wanna leave this question OFF! Hmmmm, I have an idea...I'll tag all 200+ of the Blogging Chicks and MAYBE six of them will have mercy on me.

  Into the pensieve on Wednesday, July 12, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (8)

Monday, July 10
I'm probably the only person who thinks this, but...
...I didn't like "Dead Man's Chest" (Pirates of the Caribbean part deux). The young ones did. It was a letdown after the delight and allure of the original.

I loved "Raiders of the Lost Ark", but I can remember thinking much the same when I saw its follow-up, "The Temple of Doom". Both second movies were darker, left us with beating hearts outside their host's bodies, and engaged the occult.

The upside, and there were several--Captain Jack Sparrow, the beauty and compulsion of love, dazzling special effects, and I LOVED the closing frame!! My kids HATED it! Did I mention Cap'n Jack as an upside?? :D The movie was an adventure, but I was slap worn out when it was over...I felt slimed after watching those icky sea people for two-plus hours.

That being said, looking forward to next May when the third installment will be out. I'm banking on it being as redemptive as "Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade". Keith Richards will cameo as Jack's father--now that's just delicious!

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 10, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (6)

I admit it...I am FRUSTRATED!
A second admission: I like to blog.

I haven't in over a week. Y'all know why...I've been on our annual family vacation to Kiawah. Actually, this year, we took our [now archaic] laptop. Yep, it's about five years old and it's a freakin' dinosaur. Functions, but nearing obsolescence. My thoughtful husband got a card so we could go wireless...................

...but we couldn't get online. There were half a dozen times I heard myself saying, "If I could Google that....." when one of us had a question. Of course, the flora and fauna of Kiawah are AMAZING...INSPIRING...evidence of the incomprehensible great I AM. So it woulda been easy to write long, flowery prose as I waxed poetic about all things Island. Then, again, we were rather occupied otherwise, so something would have had to give in order to write....maybe it was a good thing after all., dang it, I've spent the last HOUR AND A HALF downloading pictures from our digital (the easy part) and then trying to figure out how to compress some so I could upload 'em here! I DON'T KNOW HOW TO DO IT AND I ABSOLUTELY DETEST WASTING SO MUCH TIME TRYING TO FIGURE IT OUT.

giggle, giggle, can you sense my frustration?

Wait, it just occurred to me, I DO know how to upload them here, what I was trying to do was compress the image I wanted for my profile pic. This one:

It's therapeutic...toes burrowing in the sand, thunderous applause of wave against beach, ever-present sea breeze--sometimes bringing relief, sometimes not, but either way welcome.....oh, lawd, I'm waxing poetic (lol).

My feet are not particularly attractive, so it's odd I'd want to use this picture for my profile. Me likey this nail color, though...CALIENTE! aka HOT!! I'm thinkin' spicy, like yours truly. I like the dusting of sand that won't brush off, the view of the tide rolling in, the memories of where my feet traveled last week...that's why this is a GREAT profile's not the pic in and of itself, it's ALL that it implies.

So, for today, not a whole lot about anything. When I'm GROWLING this loudly, I think it's time for a good pirate movie. The young ones agree. Is Captain Jack Sparrow not one of the greatest characters in recent history? Colorful, dispicable, but absolutely loveable! Hope "Dead Man's Chest" measures up to the original.

Sweet, sweet home, always good to be back.

  Into the pensieve on Monday, July 10, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (4)

Sunday, July 9
My head musta been in the sand
What can I say? I told Tad if I had realized how scorchin' HOT international soccer players were, I'd have jumped on the World Cup bandwagon l o n g ago. As it is, I watched a bit of the final Sunday (and by "bit" I mean minutes, lol, including Zidane's insane headbutt, an unfortunate bookend to his career). Okay, I'm gonna stop before I start out of respect for those of you who are actual fans.

  Into the pensieve on Sunday, July 09, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (2)

Please click the red's my current blogging spot!

My Photo Name:


Married to my college sweet-heart :)...three GREAT kids I'm not selling to the circus today...I LOVE to laugh (& smile often) to read & cook, hate to shop (unless the store is very small and doesn't leave me dazed and confused). I'm scared of flying so although I'd like to travel more, I don't.

I've been pleasantly surprised to find life in my 40s to be an amazing time of transformation & discovery--of self, others, creation and the Creator.

Here's a partial explanation for my Blog title. I think it'd be cool if they really existed.

A Pensieve is a stone basin.... [One] can extract his or her own memories and place them in the Pensieve, especially to relieve the mind when it becomes too flooded with information. Anyone can examine the memories in the Pensieve, which also allows viewers to fully immerse themselves in the memories stored within...

A Pensieve first appears in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire...

For the complete explanation, see
my 2/17/06 post.

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