Saturday, October 27, 2007

a new day...

...a new opportunity. Yesterday didn't unfold the way I had hoped, but today is a new day. I have a new hair color, thanks to friends at last night's birthday party. Lots of laughter and lots of wine into the evening, two of us got makeovers (we were the most visibly gray, which is not to say that we were the oldest there). I still have visible gray, but it is less noticeable since I am now a couple of shades lighter than 24 hours ago. No pictures, alas, since my camera is at the office. Instead I am sharing internet photos of fall color, since today is also gloriously chilly and a little raw. Now this is REAL autumn! It's the first day for heat on in the house, a day for making soup, lounging in sweats and enjoying the company of the dogs. The other night Rigel even cuddled up and calmed down, so maybe there's a chance that we can snuggle on the couch and catch up on some television. I'm loving this day of non-essential bliss. Could I please have several more of them, soon?

Friday, October 26, 2007

one of those days

I don't begrudge the rain, which we need desperately, but it doesn't help. Today I've had too many errands, the added attention to the puppy with Ken out of town for a few days, a death in the parish that necessitates a trip to Murfreesboro on my day off. As long as I was making the trip I thought I'd head to the new Stein Mart to take advantage of a "two day only" coupon, Turns out Stein Mart has it's grand open next week! Grrrrr. I need some new clothes, since I have put on weight and don't fit into anything I own. No time to go elsewhere to find something. Stopped in at a shop to look for something for the grandbaby, but they didn't have what I was looking for. I stopped at another store to look for something to take to an impromptu birthday party tonight, and that was a bust. It's just not my day. So here I am sitting in my jeans (I had anticipated a new outfit!) to meet with the family of the deceased. Fortunately they are forgiving, and probably won't even notice.

The good news is that when I went to get Junior's car registered today they had received his fax last night of his orders for active duty. Those were necessary in order to waive the emissions inspection (since his car is out of state), and another tax. I was fully expecting a hassle about that, but was pleasantly surprised when the woman said "oh yes!" when I mentioned the fax. Phew! Within 15 minutes that bit of paperwork was in the mail and on its way to him.

The other nice thing, I am hoping, is that the day will end pleasantly with this birthday party. It's nice to be included, and with Ken out of town if offers some company on a Friday night. Time to start quoting Scarlett: tomorrow is another day!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

are you... ?

A laugh for the day (true story).

A friend of mine is married to a priest, and she fielded a phone call recently from a prospective visitor to the church.

Caller: "Is your church one of them conservative churches?"
Priest's wife: "I think my husband is in a better position to answer that question for you. Perhaps you could call him at the church."
Caller: "Can't you just tell me if you're one of them conservative churches?"
Priest's wife: "What do you mean exactly by 'conservative'?"
Caller: "You know. Do you have any gays or lesbians on the altar?"
Priest's wife: "No ma'am, we usually just have flowers."

Monday, October 22, 2007

one drop of grace

Last week the phrase "one drop of grace at a time" made its way into my sermon. It's not unusual for me to preach something that I need to hear, though at the time these words spilled out that wasn't on my mind. Today I am appropriating them for myself as a way of looking at some of the little things that happen in the course of a day.

For instance, watching leaves fall... noting the brilliant deep red that tinges some of the trees in the neighborhood... gratitude for having shampooed some of the carpets over the weekend... getting books moved to the office... emptying a storage unit in my office in anticipation of a modest (and long overdue) overhaul... gorgeous weekend weather...

I was responsible for some of these things, others were simply noted and appreciated for their presence. Each of them, in their own way, erased a degree of pressure and stress in my life. Those erasures in turn make it easier to look beyond my own world into the more expansive world where others live and have concerns, and where balance and peace are to be found. Grace is always present. The drops are always there. Today I'm grateful for seeing them.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

the Gore war

Okay, let me say first of all that I'm not writing this as a fan of Al Gore. I can take him or leave him as a political persona, and he's given me no reason to make a decision one way or the other about whether or not I would support him as a future candidate for any office.

That said, I'm really sick of how much he gets picked on unjustly. If I side with Gore it's because I consider myself to be an environmentalist, and I believe he's been a great voice for "green" concerns. I take particular issue with those who talk about how much energy is used in his home in Nashville. As a local girl, I have something to contribute to this conversation.
1) Until this year, the community in which he lives did not allow solar panels on homes, and the electric company only recently began to offer Green Power Switch--a more expensive energy source that is renewable! He wasn't in a position to practice responsible energy use in these ways prior to that.
2) "Average" families of four brag that they don't use the amount of energy that Gore does. Well, duh! Does anyone think he lives in a 1400 square foot house? Furthermore, this same house includes offices in which people work. He also has security needs that are beyond what most average citizens need or require.
3) The automobile issue. He does drive an SUV, but it is a hybrid.

Could Gore do better? Sure! So could I. So could everyone. This is a tired subject, but I had to speak. Let's move on.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

as promised

Puppy pictures! It cracks me up that he either sits or lies down to drink water. I've never seen a dog do that! It's tough to get pictures of this little guy since he is always on the move, but I managed to capture a brief moment here when he was no doubt calculating what territory he would conquer next. Never a dull moment here! Thank goodness for the confinement of crates.


I managed to make some progress yestserday on my mid-fall resolution, and intend to continue in that vein today. "One day at a time" is a mantra that applies to many arenas of self-improvement! Concrete, tangible and measurable steps are good ways to achieve goals. Forward, ho!

Have a good one!

Monday, October 15, 2007

If it's Monday...

We've been back from our vacation for a week now, and already it feels like it was ages ago, and the days are something of a blur. I remember rain. Poor Ken, the morning of the day that I arrived he had a small injury that put him out of commission for several days. I say "small" because it was, in the literal sense. He was scraping paint on the house exterior and one of his fingers took a direct hit with a sizeable splinter--right into the finger joint. He says that except for getting shot, this is the worst pain he's ever experienced! Thank goodness Mom was in residence because she was able to drive him to the emergency room. The frustration for him was that he was unable to finish the last part of painting that needed to be done, and although he had recovered sufficiently toward the end of the week to try to tackle the project, rain prevented him. Oh well! He'll wrap it up in the spring.In spite of rain, we enjoyed the leisure of time on the front porch, as well as the company of the dogs. On our last night we were treated to this sunset. Who can resist a view like this from the porch?

Puppy adventures continue. He is in constant motion, and likes to put his teeth into everything, including my hair! And still, in spite of utilizing the backyard as he should, he seems to have a fetish for leaving a spot indoors on the rug. Wish we could figure that out. In the meantime he's a cutie, and we're enjoying getting to know him. Additional pictures will follow!

In the meantime, it's a new week, and I've resolved to tackle some persistent tasks that I never seem to get to. It's a mid-October new year! Hope your week goes well...

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

keeping with a theme

...of animals, that is, here are a few pictures from last week. Ken decided he wanted to do some South Carolina sightseeing, and learned about a goat farm. We decided to dedicate part of a day to our tourist ventures and headed off to Greenwood and the Emerald Farm. They had goats, peacocks, llamas, bunnies, and probably other critters that we didn't see. I developed a fondness for goats while living on the mountain, so naturally I spent most of my time visiting with them. I stalked the peacocks, hoping to get a fan-tail display, but no luck.

We then shifted gears and drove to Abbeville (attention scrappers, there's a nationally published scrapper from Abbeville, but I can't remember her name or which mag she appears in!). Abbeville has the distinction of being both the cradle and the grave of the confederacy, and onf ot he its architectural treasuresis the local Episcopal Church, built in 1859. Although the tourist info brags about the church, it has not been well maintained and is in serious disrepair. It's quite sad, and I'm sure that the money required to restore the building to its original architectural splendor is significantly beyond the means of the congregation. We had a great lunch at one of the restaurants on the town square, and enjoyed playing tourist for the day.

Stay tuned for the next report!

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

he's heeeeerrrrrreeeee!

I don't know how it is that I managed puppyhood when I was single, because it is certainly a challenge with TWO of us here to tend to the task.
We picked up the puppy yesterday after lunch, and it's been a bit of a ride since then! The primary task was to get him named, and after trying out a variety of options, a new one came to the fore. He's a liver-spotted German short-haired pointer, with a splash of mottled color running up his nose to the top of his head. There in center of that splotch at the top of his head is a solid white mark, not quite the shape of a star, but enough to suggest it. I suddenly thought of Rigel, the brightest star in the constellation of Orion, the hunter, and that was it.

Housebreaking is proving to be more challenging than I remember, and at his young age we're going to have to be like parents of a newborn getting up during the night to get him out of the crate to make a visit to the yard. In spite of providing early hour relief during the night, this morning he had messed in the crate, and a load of laundry is now about done.

He is doggone cute, our little Rigel, and he's keeping us busy keeping him out of trouble!

Sunday, October 07, 2007

hellooooooo??? anybody home???

Well, we are, finally! The last couple of weeks have been so full-to-overflowing that I didn't even have a chance to leave a note here to let my faithful readers know that we would be out of town! Ken left a little over three weeks ago to head to Melrose to paint the cottage and install some replacement windows. The dogs and I headed down last Monday to join him, and also Mom, who arrived only a couple of days before that.

It was lovely to be away, and this time we "flagged the yard" to give the dogs a boundary like the one they know at home. It worked! They had a great time being out as often as they liked, and it was peace of mind for us. I'll post some pictures and share a few tidbits soon. At the least, I thought I should offer a break from the zinnias!

Glad to be back home among my cyber friends!!
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