Sunday, March 30, 2008

Snow in New Hampshire

Can you see out this window? David and I are in New Hampshire and the back deck is loaded with snow!!! And here I thought it was spring.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Blogging on the Road

David and I are getting the hang of keeping our technology running while we are on the road. Sitting in the Atlanta airport this morning I updated this blog and uploaded all my pictures. So cool! 

College Road Trip

It is inconceivable to her right now that just a heart beat ago, I was walking a college campus with my own mother and father. 

I am so proud of Kylie and the work she put into getting herself into college. Not only that, but she seems to have chosen which college she would like to attend: Toccoa Falls College in north Georgia. I love having her so close to our friends and family!

I know this is one of those milestone events.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Living Simply

Here's an unusual source of advice for me: I found this great post entitled How to live like a Zen Monk. Now to be honest with you, I haven't got a clue what Zen even is. Monk sounds vaguely appropriate, but a Zen one? Nonetheless, when looked at through the lens of my life, the advice in the body of this post is really timely. Click through if you dare!

How to Live like a Zen Monk

Creative Once a Week

I love to scribble what I see, and one of my goals for this blog is to provide a fun spot to chronicle our best creative efforts! What you are looking at above is a snippet from my journal, back in October. I was on a trip to Atlanta watching a movie and drawing in my friends' Buddy and Jody's home. I know the artwork is kinda dorky, but it was a chance to be creative. So how about you all? Does anyone want to post a picture of how they were creative this week? Add a link to your photo, blog, or website in the comments and let's see what comes up!

This Guy Came to my Door Today

This guy came to my door today. Well, not this guy EXACTLY, but the cigarette smoke was the same. Yuck! Does he know that his smell goes before him? I don't feel like writing this up again, but you can read about it here on my other blog, Coffee Shop Journal.

Monday, March 24, 2008

True Worship

I found this story on Heather Whittaker's blog, as well as her husband Carlos' blog. What a great way to end my Easter day. Please take the time to click through not only to Heather's blog, but Carlos'. They each have a different perspective.

Why I am Dancing Thru My Daddy's World

I realized that I never explained the title of this blog, Dancing Thru Her Daddy's World. At this point there are still very few readers, so I guess it doesn't matter. But for the record...

Several years ago my father died from kidney cancer after a very short illness (six weeks). Dad was the emotional and physical center of our family, and when he left us we began to wobble around. When your center is suddenly moved, everything falls apart for awhile. Until the day when you notice that maybe life is worth living after all. God sneaks in while you are not watching and reminds you that He made this world, and it is good.

I was on a plane trip to Boston last year when I noticed that it was an exceptionally clear day, and the view from 30,000 feet was stunning. I could see coastline very clearly (Chesapeake Bay area, I think). The sun was shining down and it was one of those moments when God clearly parts the veil for a moment and I realized again that life is good. So I started talking to God. I told Him that without my dad as a fixed reference point, I didn't feel like I had a place in this world. I was missing my anchor. And without my dad, I wasn't sure who I was anymore. Without my dad, the weight of the world sat heavily on my shoulders, and I didn't feel free to dance or be happy, or smile or relax. I know those are silly thoughts from a 44 year old woman, but that's what I told God that day.

From that plane at 30,000 feet God gently reminded me that He is my father, that my identity is in him, and that the whole world is his home. He prompted me to look at the country flying by below. As I did, I imagined all the little cafes by the ocean where happy people and sad people were eating their dinners in the late afternoon. I thought about coffee shops where people were reading their books and clicking away on their computers. I could imagine all those places to dance through the world. And God reminded me that they all belong to him, and I am his daughter. I am free to dance through the world perfectly at home with the place He has shown me. I am allowed to give Him the responsibility. He delights in smiles, and he wants me to be happy. I am allowed to relax, and so I can dance.

The metaphor of dancing through my daddy's world (yeah - it's a metaphor. I am a lousy dancer) helps me to realize that I am not in control and I was never meant to be. I'm free to become the most I can be with the talents I have. I don't need to worry about the ones I don't have. How amazing is that? 

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

I tried to take a picture of "a" Peep tonight. My dad loved Peeps, so every Easter Kylie and I make sure we buy a pack in his honor. Apparently she likes to blow them up in the microwave, and I like to look at them sitting in a row. So I tried to take a picture of a single chick, figuring I would post it here. Know what I discovered? One Peep is...underwhelming. It's poor little wing is all open to the marshmallow, and it's shape is squished and wimpy. Here's the lesson: Peeps are better in a bunch.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Creativity Killers

That's's one of THOSE nights. I had plans to be in bed by now, happily watching my favorite tv game show, "What's My Line?" But no...tonight was one of those ferocious battles. And so as I sat here ready to write or work on some of my projects I realize that the battle has drained my creativity. I've noticed, lately, that there are a lot of Creativity Killers in my house. These are just a few of them to think about.
  1. Too much stuff in the way.
  2. Laundry and other little tasks. "I'll just get this done then..."
  3. Sweet hubby who likes to remind me of to-do items. In all fairness, I do the same thing to him.
  4. Everyone else's creativity: intimidating and messy.
  5. SLEEP...or the lack of it.
It's no good complaining without thinking of some fixes for the problem, so next time I guess I'll commit to offering up my creativity boosters. If I can wake up. 

Monday, March 17, 2008

Extreme Makeover Home Edition Gets it Right!

It is not too often that a random comment on television leaps out of the set and clarifies life as a Christ Follower, but it happened to me tonight. I was watching Extreme Makeover Home Edition as the team redid the Boettcher Family home. (I think I have that spelling right). "Pastor Steve" (Dad) has run a ministry to biker gangs and bikers for many years. His family also turned their garage into a recreation center for the town kids. Many of these kids were featured on the show, discussing the warmth and love and affection they found at the Boettcher home, in addition to home cooked meals and a little guidance. The Boettcher family lived in a 12 X 70 foot trailer, with their 20 year old daughter and special needs grandson, but they ran an amazing ministry from their garage and home. Mrs. Boettcher cooks each Wednesday for 30 - 40 kids in a kitchen no bigger than an RV kitchen. Ty Pennington, in his own way, was amazed at all the Boettchers have done out of this primitive and falling down home. "You've done all this in this home and kitchen?" he asked. Pastor Steve whipped his head around and looked genuinely surprised by the question, as if it had not occurred to him that these conditions were hardly ideal for running a family, let alone a community ministry. "It's the home I have." he stated simply.

With that, he floored me. What an attitude! Of course I ran my ministry out of here, this is the home I have to give. And with this falling down, broken trailer, Pastor Steve and his family turned lives upside down for God. Wow. If we all could approach our possessions and our lives with that same open-handedness, what would we accomplish? Of course...this is what I have. 

All of this kind of reminded me of the boy with the fishes and the loaves of bread, feeding thousands with "what I have." Or the widow, who offered to God's prophet, "what I have." Or Abraham, who placed on the altar "what I have." 

What do I have?

Extreme Makeover? If people really listen to the story told tonight it could be an Extreme Makeover indeed.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Disney World Rocks!

This weekend we are hanging out at Disney World for my birthday trip. So here's the question we've all been tossing around... What is it about Disney that causes you to know in your heart of hearts that it is fake? The hotels are themed and beautiful, but you find yourself longing for the originals, not the copies. The streets are amazing, but you wish there were some real traffic on them. By the time you leave Disney flowers no longer seem real and you mistrust your own ears. After all, at Disney Vero they play a constant soundtrack of a roaring ocean even on a calm day. So did that bird really twitter? Or was it a sound track?

David and I were discussing this longing we feel for the authentic when we are surrounded by the beautiful copies. There are so many spiritual analogies, and I will leave it to you to draw most of them, but there were two thoughts that surfaced for us. The first is that we all long for the ideal. Inside of us God has planted eternity. Our hearts are longing for heaven, for the real, for the original and not the copy. Disney awakens that desire in us. Secondly, people are amazingly good at telling the real from the fake. We want authenticity. This, of course, applies to nearly everything. My mind is busy applying it to the types of relationships and communities we develop. 

I'm dwelling in the artificial dreaming of the authentic. Let's go create it!

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

So this was in NYC during our Christmas trip. Not a great photo, now that I see it, but I wanted the practice of uploading a photo and posting about it! I am excited about NYC, because I am headed there again in April for the Q conference hosted by the fermiproject. It focuses on the intersection of church and culture, a current passion of mine. 

What I am Reading Today:
"It's Not about the Coffee" by Howard Behar
Good book about leadership and life lessons learned while he was the president of Starbucks.