Tuesday, December 15, 2009

For It is Better To Marry...

I recently came across a copy of our wedding invite. It was a pleasant surprise because I haven't seen it for a while. I love the pictures we chose and that Greg did the artwork for it. But more than those things, I kind of really love the Bible verse we chose:

1st Corinthians 7:8 (last chunk):
...For it is better to marry than to burn with lust.

It was supposed to be kind of a joke.

Not that we *weren't* burning...we almost eloped. But we controlled ourselves because we simply couldn't do that to our parents.

But we just couldn't bring ourselves to be yet one more couple that did, "I have found the one my soul loves" or the love chapter (1st Corinthians 13) either.

We thought about doing something totally bizarre--something that didn't have anything to do with weddings (such as the bear-mauling-children passage). But we figured that would leave people scratching their heads.

So, true to our nature, we made a joke and nobody laughed.


No one ever said a thing about our verse--not even our parents. This has left us wondering for the past 6 years if our beloved friends and family actually took us seriously. Or WORSE, thought we were preaching at them.

Honestly, when we inscribed, "It is better to marry than to burn with lust", we were just making a little comment about the lustier side of our relationship. And we thought it was funny.

But apparently, it wasn't.


We just can't win.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Epiphany #120494--School Music Performances (really aren't all that and a bag of chips)

Seriously--this just dawned on me today. I just NOW realized I'm guilty of not really hugely looking forward to Sam's Christmas program on the 17th. I mean, it's going to be cute and all, but I'm not jumping up and down with excitement.

All through childhood, I thought we elementary and Jr. high school students were WONDERFUL performers--that we had so much talent, my parents just couldn't wait until they could get on down to the Niles Theater to listen to me playing, "The Gremlin Rag" and hear me sing "Voices that Care" along with my other classmates.

I really truly thought my parents *liked* the music we were singing. In my mind, my parents and all the others, were knocking each other down like a mob at Walmart on Black Friday or a U2 concert just to get in. And even if I couldn't find them out there in the audience, I knew they were there-- listening--so very enraptured by the gloriousness of our abilities, wishing we would never stop playing, never stop singing. We were astoundingly gifted.

Now I know better.

There is a definite pride in seeing your child on stage, giving it their all--or, in other cases, seeing your child on stage with his arms crossed and a beligerent look on his face--refusing to do the hand motions.

However, I now understand my parents didn't come to enjoy my music, but they came to enjoy seeing me doing something besides whining at how bored I was or fighting with my sister over toilet paper (it happened more often than I'd like to admit--don't ask).

They came because they love me.

But when there are 7 grades performing and each grade is doing 2 songs, that means you have to sit through 12 other songs you couldn't really care less about. That's a lot of sitting with a bunch of other parents. You're in a hot, cramped, "cozy" box of a room, when where you really want to be is back at home, smooching on the couch during the commercial breaks of the latest episode of Heroes.

School concerts were a sacrifice of love on my parents' part.

I had no idea.

I'm sure there were moments when my parents wanted to flake out on me and say, "Can we just sit this one out, pleeeeeease?" But they never did. They were always faithful to do their very best to be there.

And not only did they come to see me, but I was always dressed to the hilt too! Red dresses, itchy wooly tights, headbands--lots of photos were taken, and I always felt very loved and special and important--even when I tried three different instruents only to drop band all together. Even when I got a detention for not clapping. Even when I forgot to wash black nylons for my choir uniform and you had to go to the Toggery just before closing to get them for me--you always gave so much.

Thanks Mom and Dad for letting me think you were were crazy about "Chim-a-ring-ring-Chong" (yes.. this song really does exist) and for coming to my concerts and for encouraging me so very much. It means even more, now that I have kids of my own.

You guys are pretty fabulous, you know that? I love you.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Disrupting Cultural Mores

I often wish life were not so boring and normal. I'm wondering if I'm not alone in this.

Sometimes I have the urge to hug random people--like the checkout lady at the grocery store. I mean, really. How fun would that be? Just going around the counter and hugging the checkout person just because you could? Would she hug back? Would she consider it a nice gesture? Or would she press the red button behind the counter and have security take me away? (Gender changes the answers to these questions a lot, I'm sure).

Kind of on the opposite side of the spectrum from hugging-- when I was in 11th grade, Matt Busby donned a Jason mask from the Halloween movies and stood outside staring into the high school social-hall during our Rock-a-thon. He nearly gave my hyped-up, Red Bulled self a heart attack. And Jeran screamed and Josanna threatened to go out and chase him down and beat him up. I don't remember anyone else's reactions, but the moment was pretty priceless.

My friends Becs, Jodee, April and I did the "Do you like beans?" survey from Animaniacs at a high school youth conference in Portland. That was fun.

Sometimes I eat pasta for breakfast. I'm rebellious, I know.

Sometimes I eat breakfast for dinner too. Now that's just CRAZY.

Once my roomate Theresa and I got Krispy Kreme and drove around Biola offering Campus safety police people donuts. That was fun too.

Speaking of police officers, comedian Paula Poundstone asked, "What if when a cop pulled you over and stuck his big face in your window--what if you just touched him on the nose?" I would LOVE to do that!

Most of the time, though, I just blend in and fade into the background. Most of the time, I start and stop when I should, speak at appropriate volumes and make small talk.

I'm wondering if life should be a little less sane and a little more like the movie "Elf". Should there be more harmless, silly fun going on? Because we really do only have one life to live.

But then again, maybe we have these social regulations to keep us aware of when things are not quite right.

Maybe it's about finding the right balance between the two. I don't know. But right now, I'd give anything for a little insanity.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Whatever, Weather People

People have been talking about how cold it is on facebook today. A lot.

It was supposed to snow last night here in Yucaipa and it didn't. Instead it just froze and killed a bunch of our plants.

I always feel so disappointed in weather people when they are wrong. And notice how they never acknowledge their mistakes? There are never any apologies, no issuing of retractions. For once, I'd like to see, "We would like to say how sorry we are for our recent incorrect prediction of the weather. It will probably happen again, and we are SO sorry for that too." Yes. That would make me feel much better.

Instead, they just go along their merry little way, pretending like they never said anything at all. You can almost hear the innocent whistling and see the eye avoidance.

I bet there really are no "real" weather people at all. It's probably some 3rd grade class in Kentucky taught by a really sweet old lady named Mrs. Johnson.

Mrs. Johnson: "What do you think the weather in Yucaipa California will be like tomorrow, Sally?"

Sally: It's gonna snow!

Mrs. Johnson: Alright--I'll email that to Google.

I'd bet ABC's "Doppler 7000" is the 6-year-old son of the weather man. And THAT KID is the one who is really talking into the weather man's earpiece.

I'll admit--I like to pretend I know what it's going to do weather-wise, though. Last night, I said it felt like it was going to snow. And Greg believed me because I grew up where it snows. Don't tell him, but I really had no idea what I was talking about. I mean.. it was cold and cloudy and raining off and on. But that was about all I knew.

Maybe I should be a weather woman.

Monday, December 07, 2009


I'm pretty agoraphobic. I don't know if this is an actual "clinical" problem, or if it has more to do with having to drag my children through pushy, loud, smelly, crazy crowds. I'm thinking it's more of the latter (though I do have some pretty neurotic issues with people "breathing my air"). And as much as I love store windows at Christmas, and Christmas lights and music, I hate the marked-up prices and insanity of the rest of it.

So, this year I decided in order to keep Christmas a little more sane, I'll I'd have to do was do all of my Christmas shopping online. I ordered mostly from Amazon because they have superdeals once in a while and free shipping. And it worked out marvelously, I might add.

But then, I started getting the stuff--GINORMOUS boxes with one small item in them (we'll be saving some of the boxes to send stuff to Alturas in). At least there have been no styrofoam peanuts.

And then there was the scary-dark-wrapping-cloud hanging out over my head that wouldn't go away. So yesterday I wrapped like a woman possessed and now I am mostly done with it.

But then I realized... I have two weeks! Two weeks to keep the kids from UN-wrapping the presents and the cat from destroying the tree and to keep Greg from accidentally finding out what he's getting via email.

I'm realizing that I kind of probably had it a bit backwards... that instead of rushing to get the shopping done, I should have been rushing to celebrate Jesus's birth. We haven't really talked about Him being the reason why we do Christmas at all with our kiddos and we really should be doing more of that.

So tonight, I resolve to sit down with the kids and read the Christmas story--to open the advent calendar doors we've missed (all of them) and to try to have a better attitude about it all.

When I was a child, I had the faith of a child. But now I guess I have to be a little more intentional about it. And it's not just for my own spirit's sake, but for my Childrens' too.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Only Blogging From Here On Out

I am leaving facebook on Tuesday, December 8. I am hoping to be blogging more in its place.

Just FYI