Thursday, July 30, 2009

Thursday, July 23, 2009

My City of Ruins

This song hit me today. Springsteen wrote it for 9/11 but really I think it fits our world. What have you done about it today?

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As a side note - whenever I hear Springsteen I think of being 10 years old, mirrored sunglasses on, standing on a chair in the kitchen on Lord Hill with a fake microphone in hand singing Born in the USA at the top of my lungs. I should find that picture.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Oh those Summer Nights

One of the best things about having a dog has been the excuse to get out and walk. I've always liked walking but have felt I should run rather than walk when I have the opportunity. I don't enjoy running (but do it because I feel like I should) so my runs generally are not that long. OK - I've run for over an hour before but that's pretty rare.

Anyway, now with Moxie I walk twice a day every day. We take a quick 20 minute walk in the morning and walk for 45 minutes to an hour in the evening when I am home for that long. Last night I got home and had to leave again for dinner with Adrienne, Molly, Erin and Adrienne's mom Linda so I didn't take Moxie for a walk. It was 90 degrees here in Seattle yesterday so it was too hot for her to enjoy a walk anyway so I didn't feel my usually large amounts of guilt putting her back in her cool dark kennel.

It was nice to have dinner with A. She leaves today and I'm very sad to see her go. Even though I didn't really see her in the last week it has been nice just knowing she was hanging out somewhere in the same state. I desperately miss her when she is gone. So it was with sadness that I headed home after dinner last night, having said goodbye until November at the soonest.

When I got home Moxie was anxious as always to greet me. I grabbed her leash and we headed out. It was after 9:00 pm so it was getting darkish but it was still in the upper 70s so everyone around had their windows open. My neighborhood is pretty nice. We all live very close to each other but compared to what it could be, it's pretty quiet and people are pretty nice to be around. I would ideally choose 5 acres with a couple head of Black Angus Cattle but for where I am in life right now this will do. I didn't know any of my neighbors at all until Moxie came on the scene. Now I know far more and we get stopped often on our walks because people want to say hi. I know it's more Moxie's popularity than mine but it is nice to know people.

I don't ever take my Ipod and I try not to talk on the phone too often during Moxie and my walks. I figure this is her time with me and it isn't fair to get distracted but it also has greatly increased my ability to observe and take in what we are seeing which I have enjoyed. Last night with everyone's windows and doors open it was a pretty neat walk. It's interesting how everyone does different things in their homes - there were radios playing, kids laughing and crying, TVs on, dinner dishes being washed and conversations being had. There was something intimate about the falling darkness and the quiet murmurings and other sounds from the homes around us.

Obviously, in all of this I was an outsider but strangely it didn't feel like it. It felt like during the moment I passed each house I was brought into that family's day. Like we truly were neighbors.

It stilled my sadness and made me feel like I was home.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Waiting on God

I'm leading Bible study on August 8th and I'm supposed to talk about finding God's will in my life. I've decided I want to talk about waiting on God - those times we all have that can be scary, frustrating and growth giving as we try to discern God's will for our lives.

I have some initial thoughts but would love some anecdotes to share from others lives. So those of you not part of Acts 2:42 Fellowship (formerly known as YAG) do you have any insight? Any gems I should share to start conversation? Those of you in A2:42 now is your time to start thinking. I expect you all to be well prepared for me on the 8th!

Thanks for the insights.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Dating Tips

Anyone who knows me very well knows I love Rachel Ray. (One time someone told me I remind them of her - talk about a well landed complement!) I found this on her website today and it cracked me up. Good tips but still funny what she thinks is important to remind guys. Are they really this inept?

date night rules

Dos
• Take down photos of old girlfriends. Turn off your computer and the ringer on your cell phone. (Internet chat partners and your buddies can wait a few hours.)
• Always serve her first. If you burned the food, serve yourself the portion that is the most "well done."
• Fill the wineglasses half full (or half empty, depending on how you feel the dinner is going).
• Walk her out at the end of the evening—provided, of course, she does walk out at the end of the evening.

Don'ts
• Don't talk with your mouth full of food. Don't chew with your mouth open. And, most importantly, don't talk with your mouth closed.
• Don't do the dishes while she's there. You can take care of them next week.
• Don't let her do the dishes, even if she insists. Unless, of course, she's stronger than you are. And don't ask her to do the dishes. Especially if she's stronger than you are.
• If she excuses herself to go to the restroom, don't offer her a magazine.

Thursday, July 09, 2009

Reality Check and what I SHOULD have done about it

I complain sometimes (not ALL the time I hope since I like to think of myself as a glass is half full kind of girl) that my work is hard. Emotionally it's difficult. Mentally it's difficult. After last week which was one of the worst work weeks I have had for a while I started asking myself (again) the question of "can I fight with people for a living for the rest of my working life"? I'm not certain I will. The alternative however, is not as clear.

It was only a four day week and I got to spend the three day weekend in one of my favorite places in Washington State - Chelan.


I came back tired but recharged and felt as though I could take on what I figured would be another tough week. Monday and Tuesday were about what I expected but Wednesday was a lot easier than I had planned. As I was leaving the courthouse after my hearing (where opposing counsel didn't yell profanities at me like he did last week - that's moving in the right direction) I heard a commotion near one of the entrances. A woman was in hysterics and was crying and out of control with what I figured out eventually was panic. She had a small child and a service dog with her and the Marshalls and security personnel were assisting her in calming down in a friendly and helpful if not compassionate manner. It made me slow my step a bit to see what was going on because compassion (unless it is protection of me. THANK YOU SNOHOMISH COUNTY MARSHALLS!!!) isn't normally something you see from courthouse personnel.

What I pieced together was this woman had been on the bus and she had $300 cash on her somewhere and the cash disappeared. I don't know what the money was for but it very clearly was enough to send her into a serious spiral so it evidently was important. My heart totally broke for her. Her daughter was watching her and was clearly scared. People around her didn't know how to help her. I didn't either so I walked by.

It made me realize that my life is pretty cushy. Sure, I work hard and I worked hard to get to where I am and misplacing $300 would be very upsetting, but I also know this woman's difficulties were far greater than anything I can really imagine for myself at this point in my life. I looked at the rest of my day in a far different way.

In hindsight I wish I would have stopped and given her the money. It would have been a sacrifice for me to do it but it would have put the woman's world back upright. Who knows what that act would have meant to her. I feel really bad now that it was only in reflecting on her desperation that the idea crosses my mind. I wish I could turn back the clock and fix the problem for her.

Today I'm on the lookout for a way to correct my miscue. Jesus told us that when we ignored the poor and the hungry we basically were ignoring him. I did that yesterday and I know better. Clearly I need to focus on remembering what we have been commissioned to do for our fellow man.