Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving of Thanks Day Thoughts

I'd say I'm pretty honest, even self-deprecating at times. I'm one of the first to recognize when I've screwed up or in the wrong (not all the time, mind you... but most of the time), and am pretty motivated to either make things right or apologize where I don't have control or opportunity to change those things. I'm conscientious like that.

I'm riding a roller coaster these days of contentment and angst, peace and turmoil, joy and frustration.
I find myself frustrated by many unanswered questions, as if I'm entitled to more... entitled to God's immediate pandering to my dislike of waiting and feeling out of control. I don't really believe this, but I live and act as if God owes me something for my obedience and that I've somehow earned a reprieve from frustration because I throw Him some token nuggets of 'christian behavior.'

Anyway... I'm aware of how much I have to be thankful for today, and also aware that the only reason that I'm not more thankful and joyful these days is that I don't really know how good I have it.

I'm blessed and I'm spoiled. 

Like many Americans (and many Christian Americans), I gripe about the inconvenience of so many things, seemingly oblivious to the fact that I am in a very slim percentile of privilege in a world of poverty...financially, for sure, but also spiritually.

And I have, thankfully, some renewed perspective today...

  • I listened to a lady share today about how she was thankful to be alive after battling cancer the last couple years, surviving the grim prognosis and short time table of doctors.
  • I've encountered tons of people (sadly, too many) over the last several years who are lonely and disconnected, and whose families do nothing but find fault and/or verbally, physically, and emotionally abuse.
  • I've seen people at shelters and begging on street corners and highways who have no home, no food, and only the clothes on their back.
So today (and hopefully, moment by moment, daily) I'm thankful for...
  • friends and family who love me and who are walking with me prayerfully through this season of transition.
  • health and the ability and opportunity to move and breathe and live without physical hindrances.
  • a roof, and not just a roof, but the comfort of life that many people don't experience- abundance of food, too many clothes, t.v., wireless internet... hot water...
  • a job that pays the bills
  • worth that is not based on what I do or what I know...
I told one of my former youth kids young men (now involved in full-time ministry) that I was struggling with the limbo I am in and frustrated by the lack of answers.

His response?  "It's a good thing that your status as a son of the King is not in limbo."


Thank you, Lord, for Your patience with this spoiled brat son upon whom You've lavished the riches of Your love and grace. Keep me mindful of the reality of Your perfect presence and provision.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Some guys have all the luck...

Warning... discretion advised... not for the squeamish

So... adding more trophies to the "kill" list...

 This little guy wasn't able to out-slither my mower, got frustrated, and lost his head. 

On the home front...
The mouse trap has been empty. Maybe it's the new bait... broken fortune cookie.

Which is sad... because the fortune cookie said "Keep an eye open for an opportunity soon to arrive."
(i kid you not.... appropriate, right?)

I was sure it was talking about another mouse.

My little brother had to fill in the gaps... he sent this by phone.  Like brother, like brother.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Another one bites the dust...

Same song, second verse...

Ralph's cousin, Roger, got caught today. I'm beginning to think about starting a Saturday morning hunting show on ESPN, focused on rodent removal.

I would sign an endorsement with "Catchmaster" glue traps... yep, and for big bucks.

I'm not sure I'm ready to do this every day for the rest of the winter. The roomies and I may have to figure out some preventative measures to keep the little guys from committing suicide by getting within reach of my pest removal skills.

It's like fishing in a barrel.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Behind the wheel...

Fixed the pictures....

A couple pics from my day driving limo...

Pretty impressed by the Patriot Guard today... their 'community,' their respect, their emotion, and the support of a grieving widow.

It's hard to describe the picture of so many bikes riding in procession behind the limo I was driving. I wish I could have taken a picture. I guess I'll always have one in my head.

I was also impressed by the respect of people as the funeral procession passed... some had their hands over their hearts; some just stood and watched; some saluted; all pulled over and waited. I thought that the whole "pull over to honor the dead" practice was, for lack of a better word, "dead." It was nice to see that people still pause in respect.

okay... that's entirely too much blogging in a 24-hour period...

Ralph S. Mouse...

Did you ever read those books?

Growing up, I was pretty intrigued by Ralph S. Mouse, his life and his motorcycle.
I read a lot of books and Beverly Cleary's books were among my favorites...
(mostly the Ramona books, and, yes, Ralph S. Mouse, "Rodent Extraordinaire.")

Fast-forward several years and I find a couple things have changed. Clancy and friends (Tom, that is...with John Grisham, Robert Ludlum, et al.) have taken the place of Cleary. And, also, my fascination with rodents has been replaced by a deep disgust.

Those feelings of disgust were only confirmed and strengthened yesterday when I found a trail of turds criss-crossing my 'food shelves' in our house pantry closet. See Exhibits A, B, C...

This was actually the second day of 'evidence,'
so I pulled out a trusty glue trap from my stash,
piled some mouse-gnawed granola bar in the middle, and topped it off with a dollop of peanut butter.
Eat your heart out, Martha Stewart, Stuart Little, and any other 'celebrities' connected with food and/or fictional rodent literature!

And this is what I found this morning...

I'm happy to say that this little guy's motorcycle riding days are over...happier that the turd-laying, food-contaminating days are over.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Groundskeeping, Beard-keeping, and limos...

For the last month or so, I have been working on over-seeding the lawns at Kensington Gardens. The new grass has been coming up well with the moisture, warm weather and sunshine that we're having.

But I have also been working on growing something else...

the beard.

Actually, this is not quite the reality.

I trimmed it a couple weeks ago, so imagine it a bit
more like this...------------->
(a bit, but not quite)

Some people pick their hair and leave the pick in.
I tried it with my beard. Let's just say that the
'chia-beard' is thick.

or was....

I was asked to be a limo driver for a funeral tomorrow...

so I trimmed the beard and the hair.
(not totally different from my 'day job'...
just a different medium to work with. )

Now... imagine this face, with a suit and tie, behind the wheel of a limo.

Yep... you guessed it...
the surreal life.

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