Thursday, July 31, 2008

pressure, pressure and more pressure

I am not big on "scrapbook" type projects for school. I've had them in both of my previous degrees (grad and undergrad) and as near as I can tell, it's so that the prof can feel like she/he has taught you something. But instead, you end up with a lovely "project" which is supposed to be a "resource" and becomes a piece of clutter. You worked so hard on it. You won't use it because it is either immediately out-of-date or it's in a format that is not intuitive for you to use.

For instance...

In undergrad, I had to put together a file card box of books, music and other resources for music education. Every semester I had to add to it. Each card had to have the "call number" (even though none of the public libraries used anything but Dewey at the time.) Hours and HOURS of running index cards through a typewriter. By the time I graduated and found a job, the box was out of date and/or the resources were not available to a public school teacher in small town Ohio. I finally threw it away when we moved to this house in 1996... (I won't tell you how many moves it survived before I tossed it...)

During my (first) masters, I had to "write a grant" for a community treatment facility that was focused around the discipline of music therapy. Never mind that the health insurance industry was moving away from making music therapy a reimbursable service. Never mind that Medicare considered music therapy a "recreational" discipline, not a therapeutic modality. No. We had to justify ourselves, our profession and our livelihood for the competitive, non-profit grant community. Riiiiiight...

So this semester... I am putting together a "resource notebook" for mentoring. The problem is, the professor leans way more conservatively on women's "roles" than I do. SO I have to walk the line between what I would do in my ministry setting, and what she wants. For instance, I have to include stylized note-taking pages from the assigned texts (FIVE of them.) Four of the books I would never EVER use. One of them is pretty "iffy." And I don't have a "file" where I keep "notes" on books. (Should I? That's another question...) You'll know if I like a book because I will have sticky notes all over the pages!

This. is. nuts. Oh... did I mention? There's the "creative, intuitive organization" requirement. In a binder. GAAAaaaahhhhh!!!!!

I have given up making this "something to use in a future ministry setting." Right now, I just want to be DONE with it and move on to the next class.

Maybe it's because I've done this dance before...
Maybe it's because I'm an older student and I'm not as awed by professors...
Maybe it's because I'm in seminary while I'm IN ministry and the things they are convinced will be so "applicable" are not...

Sorry for whining. I'll eat my spinach and shut up now....


Tuesday, July 29, 2008

She's on the ground...

Hey praying friends...
Our team is on the ground and going through Customs in San Luis Potosi, Mexico. In a few hours, they will be 24/7 the friends and adopted family of the children at Casa Hogar.

More updates as I get them!



Monday, July 28, 2008


The Harpist is packing! ALL OF HER FUNDS ARE IN!!

I have to say, there are some pretty wonderful folks out there. Your financial support has just been amazing.


A million ZILLION thanks!!! from her, and from her family.

I have asked her to "guest blog" when she's back. :eyeroll: "OK, Mom... OK..."



Friday, July 25, 2008

Friday Five: What you absolutely, can't leave home without...

Singing Owl of RevGalBlogPals writes:

We will be at a chaplain's convention when you all are answering the Friday Five Questions. I'll look forward to reading your answers next week when I get home. At the moment we are trying to get the car loaded so we can hit the road, so this will be a simple F.F. This running around madly in order to leave has me wondering: what are the five things you simply must have when you are away from home? And why? Any history or goofy things, or stories?

Since we just did a 10 hour round trip to pick up Reedy Girl yesterday from band camp, I'll write down what I grabbed at the last minute (and actually needed!):
1. water
2. camera
3. map
4. snacks
5. napkins

When the kids were little it was:
1. diapers and wipes
2. changes of clothes
3. all-important blankie
4. kid entertainment (books-on-tape, simple games)
5. Cheerios!

When I head to a modular week I take along:
1. cell phone
2. lap top
3. quarters (for the copier)
4. snacks
5. my fellow traveler Dana who is on the sem-fem journey with me!

And it's back to the papers for me...


P.S. That's not my cat. Just loved the picture!

Monday, July 21, 2008


See you in a few weeks...

BECAUSE... it's the end of the semester!!!
I've got 2 papers due.

The kids are away at camp or with friends this week and it's prime writing time.

My beloved spouse is dealing with a bunkered down wife in the piles of journal articles and books.

Back when the dust settles and the last papers are emailed...

and THEN??? It's time to CHILL OUT for the summer!!!


Friday, July 18, 2008

Send a great 17 year old to Mexico!

This is not an infomercial.... this is for a real person!

I have talked about our lovely Harpist. She is less than 10 days away from heading to Mexico to work in an orphanage. She is short about $600. If you would like to help her... please use this link. Specify "BETH - MEXICO" in the memo area (there is a place to leave a comment.)

It's 100% deductible.
It's for a great cause.
It helps a house full of kids and their house parents in tangible ways and shows them the love of Christ.
And you will bless and delight one of our wonderful girls (and her parents...)

If she raises OVER her amount (we would be delighted) the extra money will help pay for repairs to a well at the orphanage. The estimated cost for the well repair is $7000 (US dollars.) Other funds will be used to pay for school supplies, clothing and new backpacks for the kids.

OK, Plug and plea over.... thanks...


P.S. These are the kids that they loved on last year... real kids. Real needs. Real Jesus love...

UPDATE!!! Tuesday, July 22nd....
ONLY $200 to go!!! WOW! I have some amazing blogging friends!!! (You know who you are, and you rock!!!)

Friday Five: What's In A Name?

RevHRod of RevGalBlogPals writes:

If you are a regular reader of Songbird's blog, you know that "The Princess" has requested a new name. Her older brother changed his "secret identity" a while back and now this lovely young lady is searching for a new name on her mother's blog. This got me to thinking. How do we come up with all of these names? There must be at least a few good stories out there.

In honor of the Princess I have posted a picture of one of my favorite members of fictional royalty, Robert Munch's "Paperback Princess." She is a brave young woman who doesn't need anyone else to fight her battles. And she knows that what is most important isn't tiaras and finery but what's on the inside. If you haven't read this little fairy tale, I highly recommend it. But I digress.

1. So how did you come up with your blogging name? And/or the name of your blog? In another lifetime, I was a music teacher. And then a music therapist. And then... a music (worship) director. My life has seemed to fall around music. (I would say "great works" but don't want to sound too presumptuous. Or play loose with soteriology.) And since what I'm doing is so "in process" -- "Unfinished Symphony" and the parabolic explanation about my blog just kinda fell together.

2. Are there any code names or secret identities in your blog? Any stories there? Well, let's see. My husband is BBS or "Beloved Bearded Spouse." Older daughter is known as "The Harpist" (because she is) and younger daughter is known as "Reedy Girl" because she plays a double reed (oboe) and is reedy in body type. The cats have their own blogs (Polgara and Tiria) and they have their own names for their peeps. You will have to ask them.

3. What are some blog titles that you just love? For their cleverness, drama, or sheer, crazy fun? Well.. let's see... there's Mandy's (I'm sure this is all very interesting...)
and Sarah's (Snapshots and Snippets: finding beauty in the every day)
and Teri's (Clever Title Here).

4. What three blogs are you devoted to? Other than the RevGalBlogPals blog of course!
Mindy!! Because she's Mindy.
Emerging Women. Because I am one.
Crossing the Bridge. Because my problems really seem small when I read about the Persecuted Church.
(But I just want to say... I miss Cub. {{Cub's family...}} )

5. Who introduced you to the world of blogging and why?
Good question. I don't remember!

Bonus question: Have you ever met any of your blogging friends? Where are some of the places you've met these fun folks?
Yes... Friend Deb D I actually met through an on-line parenting group. And Mary Beth and I had a virtual meet-up via phone (she was in D.C. for a convention and I just could not quite make it into town to meet her... boo hoo!!) One of these days I will make it to the Big Event... sigh.

That's my blog and I'm stickin' with it...


Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Ordination Day

The weekend started with flowers from my beloved...

FIRST... you must remember that I'm part of a contemporary, seeker-sensitive, nonliturgical church.
THEN... you need to know that very few of this denomination's "loosely affiliated" churches (The Christian Church) ordain women.
FINALLY... I guess it's just simply this. I started seminary 25 years ago. Saturday, July 12th was a LONG time coming! (And I'm not done with school - Since I restarted in Fall 2006, I am halfway through my MDiv and will graduate in 2010. Since I am a Distance Ed. student, it takes longer.)

[edited to add... I forgot to mention... We don't own a building. We rent movie theaters. We needed a venue for the ceremony and parTAY. Churches in our "loosely affiliated denomination" were not approached because they not only frown on ordaining women, they are downright nasty about it. Public spaces (rec. departments, etc.) did not allow live music. And while the thought of a water park sounded really great... I knew it had to be an air-conditioned space. SO just finding a place was a huge task. Thanks to my maintaining friendships with a previous church, we were able to use their "chapel" for the ceremony.]

With those caveats, here's a photo blog of ORDINATION DAY!!!

We wanted a more laid-back, fun celebration. Yes, there would be reading and responding to vows. Yes, we wanted to sing and worship and have Communion. But we didn't want to be so holy and sanctimonious that we couldn't let a little joy out... So we picked a "luau" theme for the decorations (hence the Hawaiian shirts and leis!) and the parTAY started...

Naomi, Scott and Bill led the worship music:
(Naomi's not eating an ice cream cone... she wrapped her lei around her mic!)

Mark (our Lead Pastor) did the honors as far as MC and keeping all the ducks in a row. He also gave the introduction and testimony on behalf of my fellow ordinand, Glenn.

Darin, our outreach pastor, gave the intro and testimony for me. And offered me some really REALLY good advice -
- keep reading and learning
- stay in the Word
- continue to love and cherish my family
- find ways to feed my soul in the midst of the stress of ministry
(See? I was listening!)

Our vows. This was the part where they led us through our ordination vows. Even in this, there was laughter. I had this mental image of them whispering to each other... "Cream pies on the ordinands' faces in 3.... 2.... 1...."

Congregational encouragement. After we made our vows, the congregation was asked if anyone had any words of encouragement to offer... first one out of the gate - she popped up right away! was our lovely Harpist...

...who made her mother cry...

My beloved gave me several words of love and affirmation. And then told everyone "I always wanted to be a preacher's wife." After we stopped laughing... he talked a little more. I love this guy.

The laying on of hands. Some dear friends and mentors around us. It was an amazing moment. Truly. I felt their love. God's love. Their affirmation. God's warmth in my heart. 100 people watching and believing it was true and cheering us on.

Glenn spoke first and gave the devotional. Not as "short" as anticipated. However, it was his day and no one held a timer.

Following that, I led a meditation leading into Communion and the distribution of the elements. The funniest moment for me was mid-way into my meditation, I looked over at the chair where I had been sitting, and there were my sandals! I had forgotten to slip my feet back into them before I walked up front. I'm just so comfortable being barefoot... I didn't even realize it until it was too late. (Oops. Don't tell Peace Bang.) No one seemed to care. Only my family teased me. I tried to recover by saying I was on "holy ground" but they didn't buy it.

While the elements were being passed... The Harpist played "Be Thou My Vision" as a special gift. It was great. (I could not talk Reedy Girl into playing too.)

So... insteadReedy Girl took pictures. And afterwards, we celebrated her 13th birthday! (Which was actually earlier in the week.... but with Grandma and aunts in town, it seemed like a good idea to wait for the family gathering.)

Some pictures I didn't get... of the reception and party following, where we had pulled pork BBQ and a spread of side dishes that made the tables groan. My family helped make several large platters of fresh fruit. They were munched down with a passion! People stayed and talked for over an hour. There was a lot of laughter and fun which is how we wanted it. I'm just not a punch and cake kinda gal.

Final thoughts...

I'm just stunned at the blessing and the outpouring of love. That people wanted to COME to this event? I mean, they really did. Over and over they thanked me (or Glenn) for including them. I couldn't get over that. And then, they kept saying these great things about us. It's hard to believe your own press clippings when you see your failures or know your own heart so well. One of my mentors commented to me that this is a mile marker for helping me "put a stake in the ground" to be able to look back, see it and remember...

I am Called to this.
And that's just (still) an amazing, incredible thing.

Even with the "sharks" and the real, human pain.
Even with the hassles and the petty, STOOPID things that people do to each other.
And even in spite of my own mistakes and issues...

God said... "yes. this one too."



P.S. Sorry this was so long... did I bore you?

The Big Read

Presbyterian Gal and Singing Owl have done it. All the cool kids are doing it. So I will too. Especially since I posted recently about the summer reading list for The Harpist, I guess it's only fair I own up to where I am "literate" and where I am not.

It's called 'The Big Read' from the NEA. They came up with a list of their top 100 books, and they estimate that the average adult has only read 6 of these books. Like Presbyterian Gal, I will bold the ones I've read. 
If you haven't done this, please play along...

1 Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series - JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell

9 His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman  (started it. hated it.)
10 Great Expectations - Charles Dickens
11 Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare  (the complete works??? I may have missed a few sonnets.)
15 Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks1
18 Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveler’s Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch - George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
(if you haven't read this one... you should!)
31 Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34 Emma - Jane Austen
35 Persuasion - Jane Austen  (oh dear! I missed one???)
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41 Animal Farm - George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45 The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale - Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50 Atonement - Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52 Dune - Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62 Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary - Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children - Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72 Dracula - Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses - James Joyce
76 The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77 Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal - Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession - AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web - EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94 Watership Down - Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100 Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
OK... my total is  66!!  There's some books I probably will never read again. Too many memories of essays and English teachers asking stooopid questions (as in... the main character is crying... how does she feel??? DUH.) 

Some of these books I probably should read... but then, given the stack of books on my list... it's a big laugh to dream of doing that. (Case in point - I picked up three books today at the bookstore. Reedy Girl said - "are any of those "fun reads," Mom?" I had to say nope... and she shook her head and said she felt sorry for me. :)

Play along and let's find out what you've read...


Saturday, July 12, 2008

Blown away...

God is good.

You get reminders, marks in the timeline to give you courage, hope and joy for the days you have fear, despair and grief.

And today was definitely one of those days to remember and to celebrate...

Pictures and more thoughts to come.

I am blessed by God's love and encouraged by God's grace.

And I am totally blown away!


Friday, July 11, 2008

Friday Five: Summer Camp

Mother Laura of RevGalBlogPals writes:
We're settling into our new new apartment, and after a lifetime at Montessori Katie is having a fantastic summer at YMCA day camp. Meanwhile, Nicholas is packing up for a week at Camp Julian, shared by the Episcopal dioceses of Los Angeles and San Diego. His lists of supplies and rules--except for the ropes course available to the teenagers and the ban on IPODs and cell phones--bring back memories of my own happy times weeks at Y camp Ta Ta Pochon, funded by selling countless cases of butter toffee peanuts. So, in celebration of summer, please share your own memories and preferences about camp.

1. Did you go to sleep away camp, or day camp, as a child? Wish you could? Or sometimes wish you hadn't?
Yes. Starting about 4th Grade, I went every year to Girl Scout camp. It began with one week sessions, then two weeks, then four weeks as a C.I.T. (counselor-in-training) and then all summer as a counselor or senior staff member. After resident camp, I worked for a city recreation department as a day camp counselor.

As a family, we did "real" primitive camping: tents, lashed tables, dug our own latrines, cooked over the fire. With upwards of 5-7 kids. My mom is a saint. We've camped a little with the kids (when they were younger) and it was fun, exhausting, and a great way to test laundry products!

2. How about camping out? Dream vacation, nightmare, or somewhere in between?
Hmmmm.... I need to blog about this. I have "directions" on camping. Wise, prosaic ones that anyone who has ever camped thinks, "yeah. it's kinda like that." Another day.

3. Have you ever worked as a camp counselor, or been to a camp for your denomination for either work or pleasure?
Oh yes. C.I.T. for two years, camp counselor for three years, waterfront director for two years... Great memories! Bugbites. Sunburn. Lukewarm instant Kool-Aid. S'mores. What's not to like?

4. Most dramatic memory of camp, or camping out?
The time I was walking campers back from the shower house and we saw a tornado coming and had to take refuge in a ditch. And then, had to walk back to the shower house to get clean again. We were COVERED in mud and leaves!

5. What is your favorite camp song or songs? Bonus points if you link to a recording or video.

Gotta be the very spiritual, very edifying, very uplifting "Shark Song"!

Sorry it's short and sweet, but I've got stuff to do before ordination day! (And no. We won't be singing the "Shark Song" tomorrow...)


Tuesday, July 08, 2008

continuing the journey...

It's hard to believe. It's happening on Saturday. Along with my co-worker, Glenn, I'm getting ordained by my church.

Part of me says, "it's ONLY a piece of paper."
Part of me says, "it's a BIG HONKIN' DEAL!"
And a good part of me is terrified.

The prayers will be said, the laying on of hands will take place... People will say (hopefully) encouraging things. My husband and kids, my mom and at least one of my sibs will be there. People who have loved and encouraged and walked this road with me will be there. Church family and staff will be there.

In the end. It's still me. I haven't changed. And yet, I have. The journey continues. I am standing on the edge of something huge and beyond my comprehension...

If you had told me five years ago that I would be looking to this day... I would have laughed. Hard. I would have been wondering if it could happen... if this dream, so long ago crushed and put down because it "wasn't biblical for women to be ordained"... if I could dare to see it come to pass. I can hardly believe it's almost here.

And yet, here I am.

Grateful. Delighted. And a little stunned...

Prayers appreciated. (And yes - I will post pictures...)


Monday, July 07, 2008

The Shack

I didn't expect to like it. I honestly didn't. Anything that gets Kathy Lee Gifford raving? C'mon...

But... it was moving.

I'd encourage you to borrow or buy a copy. Think it through. And see what message you hear in its pages.

I found myself pondering the deeper questions of the faith through the allegorical story of THE SHACK more than any of the pounds of theological reading I have had to do in the last week. (Hey. That's not surprising.)

I'm sure the fundamentalists will hate it. (You'll see why when you read it...) And maybe that, in itself, is the best reason of all to pick up a copy!

The words of Psalm 130 kept coming to mind...

Out of the depths I cry to you, LORD;

Lord, hear my voice.
Let your ears be attentive
to my cry for mercy.

If you, LORD, kept a record of sins,
Lord, who could stand?

But with you there is forgiveness,
so that we can, with reverence, serve you.

I wait for the LORD, my whole being waits,
and in his word I put my hope.

I wait for the Lord
more than watchmen wait for the morning,
more than watchmen wait for the morning.

Israel, put your hope in the LORD,
for with the LORD is unfailing love
and with him is full redemption.

He himself will redeem Israel
from all their sins.

SO if you have been "in the depths" and wondered "WHY???" I think you will find God's peace and comfort as you read...


Friday, July 04, 2008

Wordle: A COOL APP!!

Hat tip to Molly What a great time waster!

Friday Five: Fireworks Edition

Sally from RevGalBlogPals writes:

I have to admit that I am chuckling to myself a little; how strange it seems for me a Brit to be posting the Friday Five on the 4th of July!

I realize that most of our
RevGals will be celebrating in some way today, but I hope that you can make a little room for Friday Five!

From my short stay in Texas my memories of the celebrations are of fireworks and picnics, one year we went in to central Houston to watch the fireworks and hear the Symphony
Orchestra play, we were welcomed and included, and that meant a lot!

So lets have a bit of fun:

Barbeque's or picnics ( or are they essentially the same thing?)
Naw - they are quite different!

BBQ is a pulled meat with sauce on it on a bun. The meat is cooked, preferably smoked and then pulled. The sauce is sometimes mustard based, sometimes ketchup based.

A picnic is an al fresco affair with optional blanket and chairs. B.K. (before kids) it included a bottle of wine and a nice quiet place to... um... read. Yeah. That's it.

2. The park/ the lake/ the beach or staying at home simply being?
I would rather be anywhere but home. I'd like to go to a picnic. Or a pool party. Or go watch fireworks... But I married a homebody whose birthday is the 4th. So. We does what he wants.

3. Fireworks- love 'em or hate 'em?
LOVE LOVE LOVE them. But I am the only one in my family who does. (pout pout pout) SOooo... we stay home. Watching them on TV just doesn't cut it.

4. Parades- have you ever taken part- share a memory...
Yes, a couple of times. I remember having hot, tired feet and a stuck-to-your-back shirt. And sweating so much my mouthpiece would not stay on my mouth.

5. Time for a musical interlude- if you could sum up holidays in a piece of music what would it be?
Well it sure AIN'T "God Bless The U.S.Aaaaaaaa! Lots of John Philip Sousa marches, especially a trill or two of "The Stars and Stripes Forever." (Bonus points if you know all of the words to the camp song "Be Kind To Your Web-Footed Friend!"*) However, the optimist in me likes to hear "New World Symphony" by Dvorak.

Chocolate cake is baking for my Beloved Bearded Spouse's birthday... gotta run!


* What? you didn't know there were words???
Be kind to your web-footed friend
For a duck may be somebody's mother.
Be kind to your friend in the swamp
Where the weather is cold and damp (fun rhyming is optional)
You may think that this is the end...
well it is!


There are moments...

...when the backlog of laundry, date night, kid needs, friends not called, books not read, and papers NOT EVEN STARTED that I wonder why I am doing this.
...when the arguments start for no reason other than one of us used the words "never" or "always" or "everyone" or "no one"
...when you realize you don't have all the questions, let alone all of the answers...

I am not in this for me. Or I would have quit tonight.

And I'm being ordained in a week. I hope these feelings are normal.
Maybe it's just the jitters??