Thursday, August 21, 2008
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
Monday, August 18, 2008
We went to the mall.
If there’s one thing I knew this morning, I knew that I had to wear the boys out if I was going to get anything done this afternoon. They had a good time. Now they’re napping. I just finished cleaning off the lanai, cleaning part of the garage, and securing bikes, toys, and garden decorations.
Who got the better end of the deal?
The 2 p.m. advisory shows Fay’s track heading into Ft. Myers or Charlotte Harbor, well south of us. That can change. Local media says that we might feel winds on Tuesday afternoon/evening approaching 70 mph with 4 to 8 inches of rain. Most of the wind and rain is on the eastern side, so Pinellas County might just escape the brunt of the storm.
Right now we have fluffy clouds and thunderheads building. I took a photo from our back yard (those swings have to be taken down). It’s of the NE toward Tampa and not part of Fay, but we should start to have some outer rain bands this evening.
Anyway, my garage is almost clean enough to park both cars in it. My laundry is almost done. The lanai is swept and the toys are picked up. First a break, then I’ll tidy the house.
Bruce reminded me of a verse that’s been running through his mind the last couple of days. It was the key verse from a sermon 2 weeks ago. A good thought for today.
The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. (Deut. 33:27a)
Sunday, August 17, 2008
Saturday, August 16, 2008
Wednesday, August 13, 2008
Wednesday, July 30, 2008
Saturday, July 19, 2008
Thursday, July 10, 2008
Ahhh, it’s that transitional time in the afternoon lovingly dubbed “The Arsenic Hour”. This is not an original term, but one borrowed from The Mother’s Almanac and brought into our family vocabulary by my sister.
Between the nap and the twilight
When blood sugar is becoming lower,
Comes a pause in the day's occupations,
That is known as Arsenic Hour.
—Marguerite Kelly and Elia Parsons, The Mother's Almanac I, 1975
Kelly and Parsons appear to have taken a page from Longfellow’s poem “The Children’s Hour” (1863)
Between the dark and the daylight,
When the night is beginning to lower,
Comes a pause in the day's occupations,
That is known as the Children's Hour.
No amount of naps or high quality snacks can stave off this phenomenon in our house. This is the time that tests Mom’s soul. I have yet to figure out how to prepare dinner with one wailing child on each leg. So I reach for the remote control. Today’s child-calming feature is the movie Cars. Thank you, Lightning McQueen.
Interestingly enough, there’s another type of late afternoon meltdown experienced by Alzheimer’s and dementia patients--Sundowning. Lengthening shadows and end-of-day fatigue trigger a type of confusion that leads to inappropriate behaviors and increasing agitation.
It appears that God created our bodies to need a time of rest, no matter what age. Just like we need a good night’s sleep and possibly even a daily nap, we also need to take a break from our busy lives and refuel. Otherwise, let the cranky times begin.
So a quick prayer for Mommy and a kiss for the kids. Daddy’s coming home soon.
Saturday, July 05, 2008
Thursday, May 08, 2008
Did any Arabs save any Jews during the Holocaust?
A. Arabs were not involved in the Holocaust
B. Some Arabs aided Vichy France, Italy, and Nazi Germany in persecuting Jews
C. Some Arabs risked their lives to save Jews
Robert Satloff asks this question at the beginning of his fascinating account of the Holocaust in the Arab lands of North Africa. During his 4 years of research, Satloff discovered a trail of Nazi and Vichy labor and punishment camps as well as a current, collective amnesia amongst both Arabs and Jews.
It’s hard to be ignorant of the reality of the Holocaust in the west, given the accessibility of museums, books, and films such as Schindler’s List. However, the official position of many schools, media, and governments in the Middle East and North Africa is that Arabs played no role in the Holocaust, either good or bad. An entire generation of men and women believe that the Holocaust was a European problem and a small one at that. Israel exists purely as a guilt offering to the Jews, torn from Arab hands.
This book is a necessary witness to one of the greatest acts of evil in our age. Even before their troops secure borders, even as they are being attacked and pushed back by the Allies, the Nazis are busy building “Buchenwald in the Sahara.”
This book matters. It matters because Satloff provides accounts that, if not captured and documented, will be lost to history as the witnesses die. It matters because Satloff, the executive director of The Washington Institute for Near East Policy, provides context for why the families of these righteous Arab are keeping silent today. It matters because Satloff, a Jew and an expert on Arab and Islamic politics, provides insight into why the peace process is so difficult for western Christians to understand.
By the way, the answer is “B & C”.
Among the Righteous: Lost Stories from the Holocaust’s Long Reach into Arab Lands by Robert Satloff, 2006.
Saturday, April 26, 2008
A few weeks ago DW brought home a small pot, full of potting soil, wrapped in the verse “I am the vine.” While we adults listened to the sermon series on the “I AM’s” in the gospel of John, DW’s teachers were busy teaching the preschoolers this verse.
I’m a little fuzzy on what they did in church that day. DW mostly reports on who he played with and what they played. But he was excited about planting seeds.
We watered them (not too much) and watched them and one day 2 sprouts appeared. Soon they needed better soil so we carefully transplanted them into a larger pot. They’re growing slowly, teaching us patience, and rewarding our work with each additional leaf.
It’s not much of a leap to see that this is what I’m doing with my boys: planting seeds and watching them grow. I nurture them, watch over them, then back away to let them grow. Periodically they surprise me with new understanding.
And just like our plant, they’re still growing.
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Friday, February 08, 2008
Thursday, January 31, 2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Well, DW is always saying that there's eagle poop on our car. We just laughed. Turns out he may be right.
There was a beautiful American Bald Eagle enjoying a breakfast bird on a piling in our canal this morning. We watched him pluck the feathers from his prize (which I mistakenly thought was a fish until the feathers started flying). Then he began eating with gusto. I made some coffee and got DW a chair and we watched him through the kitchen window.
I knew he'd fly away if I snapped a picture, but I couldn't resist. I did wait until he had finished most of his meal. Then he looked at me, grabbed his breakfast in his talons, and took flight across the canal and over the trees.
I wonder where he lives?
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
"A Mustard Seed House" will be in the March/April issue of MomSense.
"Sanctuary", "The Parable of the Gardens" and "Smell Like a Church" will be in a FaithWriters anthology.
"Hear, O Children" will be in the Women of Passions book.
The story of "Little Mess" has lots of favorable comments so far. I'll find out Thursday how it did with the judges.
Monday, January 14, 2008
Everybody's bathed, dressed and in bed, and I'm not exhausted.