Blog Makeover at 3:00 am

It's 3:00 am and I can't sleep. I wasn't tired when I turned out the light at 11:45 and I was wide awake during an hour long spontaneous pillow talk with my bed friend. I guess I drifted off for a half hour but then woke up with a dead arm. So now I've been sitting at the computer for an hour wondering if I should attempt sleep again or if I should continue redesigning my blog (an entertaining way to spend the wee hours, I must say). In any case, I felt the need to inform you that I might be making some aesthetic changes around here. We'll see what strikes my fancy the next time I'm up at 3:00 am.


I spent my spring break at IKEA

I guess you should call it a spring weekend. I don't like to use the phrase because it reminds me of the madness that was our university's annual Olympics which consisted of boys and girls teams competing in opening ceremonies, sync swims, cowpie throwing (it was Nebraska) body-contorting games, obstacle courses, art races, and of course, the dreaded and hailed lip sync that required months of practice...but it was a weekend, and it did occur in the spring.

My parents and younger brother came to visit our new house! And us, I suppose. We walked to the lake, enjoyed happy hour in a local wine bar, rode bikes in San Francisco, (fell off our bikes in San Francisco), went flea market and IKEA shopping (female-bonding time), golfing (male-bonding time), cat-hunting (don't worry, we found him), champagne-toasted the house, and as is always the case, ate WAY too much food.

Not only did we make lot's of good memories but I learned a few things:

--Goat cheese log topped with Trader Joe's pineapple mango salsa. Yuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuummmmmmmmmmyyyyyyyy

--I haven't ridden a bike in a long time for a very good reason.

--The next time I ride a bike, I'll make sure it has an excessively large padded seat.

--You should visit us just to try my husband's stuffed burgers. They're aMAZing.

--Baker Beach is not biker friendly.

--Flea markets. Love them. Will visit more of them. (Except the guy in the wiry-things stall. He was not happy to barter.)

--Shopping is so much better with my mom.

--Two people are required to manhandle IKEA shopping carts. And if you aren't as obsessed as I am with ingeniously-designed Swedish odds and ends, you can entertain yourself by watching other people try to maneuver them and have just as much fun.

--Consider spending your spring break at IKEA, but plan on a day in each department. Monday in living rooms, Tuesday in bedrooms, Wednesday in kitchens and so on. You might want to plan an extra day just for lighting and home organization.

--One brother is nice, but three is even better. Next time I'm home I'm looking forward to seeing all three of them!

So yes. Good weekend. House is broken in. Easter coming. Hope is here!


So much depends on the heart--

"If Jesus were in this room, what would he say?"

A common question from parents and Sunday school teachers to kids when they're misbehaving. Whenever it was asked of me, I had it in my head that Jesus sat in the corner, quietly observing, not saying anything unless asked and then he spoke short proverbial phrases.

Now that I'm a bit older than eight and I've had more time to understand the Jesus in the Bible, I realize that the question is fairly open ended, as it should be. Especially when it comes to matters that aren't specifically addressed in Scripture. When we need guidance, our natural tendency as humans is to want a straight answer. I've often wished I could hear Jesus' audible responses to my questions. How much TV is too much? Should we or shouldn't we use birth control? How much do we need to give to be considered generous givers?

I'm not a parent, but as I've watched friends and family parent their children over the years, I've realized how different kids are from each other, and how differently they respond to love and discipline. A parent knows what each child needs--the content and the delivery of it.

It occurred to me last night that Jesus appears to be the same way. You see this in the way he relates to disciples, to the sick, to the poor, to anyone he comes in contact with. His actions vary widely depending on each of their situations because all of us are different people. He communicates to each of us differently. When it comes to matters that are not commandments (because I do believe there is a right and a wrong and the important commandments are addressed in Scripture) what's right for me may not be right for you. It all depends on our personalities and our relationship with God.

So for example, if Jesus came to visit you, would he enter your living room and suggest you turn off the TV? Maybe. Maybe not. I think he might ask if you're distracted from him because of it. Or if you're distracted from people because of it.

As Paul says, we have freedom in Christ. Freedom to eat or not to eat. Freedom to watch TV or not to watch TV. Freedom to give what we've been convicted by the Spirit to give.

--So much depends on the heart.


If you give a woman a house...

...she'll want to take the ugly drapes down and put up her curtains.

When she takes her curtains out of storage, she'll realize that they're in desperate need of washing.

After she washes the curtains, she'll realize that they need to be dried.

After she dries the curtains, she'll see that they need to be ironed.

After she's ironed the curtains and waited patiently until her handy husband arrives home to install them, she'll realize the curtains have shrunk and are too small for the window and she has to go buy new ones.

...But if the house you give the woman is the first house the woman has ever owned in her entire life, she'll hum her way happily to the store and start the whole process over again...