23 July 2011

Project 365: Week 30

Project 365 button designed by http://richgift.blogspot.com

I've missed one or two weeks of P365 lately. I think it's just the combination of getting back from Alaska, immediately diving into becoming full-time at work and just trying to get back on track with everything. The full-time has been pretty okay. The paycheck was definitely nice - worked out to more than the SU and I thought it was going to be! Thanks, God! I also got most of my videos up and made them visible on a blog that links to this one so I feel semi-accomplished, methinks. Now if I can just get to the rest of that to-do list I've made myself...

Anyway, here is this week:


This technically is from Alaska versus this particular week but I just love this picture.  Look at the SU and our granddaughter, Rylie, and tell me there's no genetics going on there :).


Made cream scones as part of dinner.  They're very fast to put together and only take about twenty minutes to cook.  They also store and freeze well.


OK.  I have to explain this one.  I was in my office when some faculty from another department came by and wanted to look at some rooms in our building in preparation for some kind of seminar they were holding.  I went to help them out and I noticed that this particular professor seemed to have some, er, issues.  I ended up trying not to walk behind him because I was worried there was going to be a full moon in the middle of the afternoon!


Yay!  New furniture!  I got to get rid of the ugly blue metal desk (you know, the ones that were the height of office furniture fashion in the 1960's and get a nice, new desk and table...and pay someone else to put it together :)).


The SU is not enamored of the cats as of late.  Curious Grace peed all over his laptop bag just before we left for Alaska and Munchkin apparently yakked on the couch while I was at work and he was home*.  He keeps calling them "fuzzy terrorists" and "Al-Kitty" now.  I took the pic to remind him that they are still kinda cute.

*I kept getting text updates while he was cleaning the couch.  They consisted of things like "Man, this stuff is one heck of an adhesive when it dries!", "Oh God, there's...hair in it!" and my personal favorite:  "Who knew one cat could have so much...bulk?"


Our Dean went to Harvard for a conference and brought us all back little handmade chocolate mice.


This is me being a dork :).  I had just finished my workout this morning and remembered I needed a picture.  Since the rest of my consisted of (a) the grocery store and (b) staying out of the heat and humidity as much as possible, I figured I'd better grab a picture while I could - please excuse the fuzzy camera phone.  It's also a rare picture of me in glasses since I don't like them and will wear my contacts until they fall out of my eyes.

Even with the spine injury, I still love working out even though I mansweat.  Some people glow.  Some perspire.  I go way beyond that :).  The only bad part is not all my hair is long enough to fit into a ponytail so I get these pieces by my face that get all wet and I keep thinking there is something on me.  It looks something like this:

Me:  *swipes hand at wet thing lying against face*  ACK!  Must be a bug!  ACK!
Brain:  No, that's your hair, Einstein.  *sighs*  I can't take you anywhere, can I?



Things that make you go "Awwwww..." followed closely by "WTH?"

I got up this morning and went go to workout in the gym.  That was fine.  Very sweaty.  Then I cam ehoome, showered and went to the grocery store.  All well and good.

Came home to find a fire truck parked in front of my unit in the complex.  When I got out of the car and grabbed some groceries, I could see our downstairs neighbors with their three boys and the the boys were getting their pictures taken "driving" the fire truck.  Awwww...cute.

I'd pulled most of the groceries out and gotten them into the apartment (hello, flight of stairs!) and when I came back down for the last load, my neighbors were coming back up the walkway.  I asked them if everything was okay, thinking that maybe they knew some folk in the fire department or something.

Well, no.  Seems that since 10pm last night, their a/c unit had been dripping on their hot water heater and it had been smoking and giving off other rather ominous signs.  They had been calling the complex emergency line since that time and NOBODY ever answered.  They called the fire department this morning because, you know, fire...not so good.  The fire department came and put it out but if our neighbors hadn't been home, our entire unit could have gone up in flames.  The fire department has also been calling the emergency line and NOTHING.  In fact, they're still out there.

Man, I so do not want to be the complex manager when the Fire Marshall finally gets hold of them...

(and thank you, God, that our neighbors were home and our apartment and cats did not end up crispy crittered.)

21 July 2011

Quote of the Day

"You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do." - Anne Lamott

14 July 2011

This is the grad student you are looking for (apologies to Star Wars)

Thanks to everyone who said I was smart enough for grad school :).  I was officially accepted this week and turned in my letter verifying I would be entering the MPA program.  I'm still wibbling a bit - found an older syllabus from the professor this morning and kinda went Kermit the Frog for a few minutes:

Aaaaah!  In class presentations!  Small group work ('cause I always get stuck with the person who decides to coast on everyone else's work)!  And a research paper!  I've written those for my undergrad but drat Social Sciences majors and their reliance upon the APA style :P.

*breathes deeply*  All will be well, young Jedi.

12 July 2011

The Power of Ugly

Been reading "The Power of Ugly" by Jamie Stilson on the recommendation of a friend.  It's about taking off religious masks and understanding that we are flawed, that God's grace is reflected in our weaknesses and not in our ability to handle everything that comes at us with grace and aplomb.

Some quotes that have stood out to me:

"It is so easy to give others the truth of the Bible and never care enough to hear their story."

"...the truth that Jesus' resurrection was the beginning of the New Creation that God has promised - the restoration of all things.  His resurrection promised that our bodies will live again in a new heaven and new earth (2 Pet 3:13) - and this gives hope to all of creation!  This hope is the guarantee that nothing we do in Jesus' name is ever wasted."

"In the midst of all his loss and suffering, Job's answer to all of God's questions was to lay his understanding at the feet of the one he worshipped."

"Trust must replace questions if we are going to move past pretty worship and experience Ugly Worship.  Who God is must be enough, or the answers to our questions will become our god."

"After meany years of seeking and following Jesus, I have found this to be my experience, too.  It does not weaken my faith to have more questions than answers; it strengthens it."

"Isaiah saw himself in the light of the glory of who Jesus was...All Isaiah could say, as he marveled at this glorious Jesus, was 'Woe is me!' (Isa 6:5, KJV).  He was being broken.  Like grapes, the sweetness doesn't come until after the crushing.  What feels like being brutally broken often transforms us into people who are more like Jesus."

 It's a reminder that God can use us despite our imperfections rather than us needing to be or act like some perfect creature.  It's not that bumper sticker adage of "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven"; rather that sometimes being broken, being flawed and being "ugly" to use Jamie's phraseology can serve God much better than attempted perfection.

10 July 2011

Project 365: Week Twenty-Eight

Project 365 button designed by http://richgift.blogspot.com

Guh.  Still slightly recovering from the Alaska trip.  Got back on a Wednesday and went to work immediately Thursday and Friday.  Thursday I was part-time and Friday started my current sojourn as full-time, so yay for increased budgets :).  I also managed to get my Combatives videos up and in one place here on Blogger.  I'm still trying to put up my fight video but Blogger keeps conking out on me.

Plus, somewhere in there I applied and was accepted to Graduate School (what was I THINKING??).  I start the MPA program in the Fall and I have been alternating between "this could be fun" to "AAAAAAH!" to "I am so not smart enough for this."

Ergo, in lieu of documenting-the-general-life-of-me pics, I'm posting a few more from Alaska (with a bonus cats picture at the end).  One day we drive down towards Seward to check out the Alaskan Wildlife Conservation Center, or as my husband and I put it afterwards:  The Alaskan Wildlife Conservation Center of the Damned.

I'd like to introduce you to our first occupant:  the neurotically incontinent moose.  Anytime anyone lifted a camera (or possibly thought about doing so), this guy would pee.  Copiously.  With abandon.  I bet camels are jealous.  He's probably still peeing.

Our next contestant is The Very Challenged Porcupine.  As you can see, he's currently sitting near the corner of the fenced-in area.  Just off to the left is a wiiiiiiide-open space for him to frolic in (if a porcupine frolics).  Does he go there?  No, he would waddle the three or four steps into one corner, bash his head, and then turn around and do the exact same thing on the other side.  I must have watched him do that for a good five minutes.

I wanted to make him a little helmet but we had to move on...

Make sure you get my best side!

Next we have the clinically depressed bear (slightly blurred out to protect his anonymity :P).  He wandered out of his pseudo-log cabin and just flopped over on the porch before heaving a huge sigh and looking over at the people on the other side of the fence.  All he needed was some skinny jeans, a floppy haircut and a little emo music in the background :).

Now we come to the anti-social Musk Ox.  Whaddaya mean you can't see them?  They must have paid the caribou to sit in their place.  Here is what an actual musk ox looks like:

What I really love is the fact that their hair/horns looks exactly like the girl from the old Wendy's ads :).  All he needs is some bows (see below):

Finally, we arrived at the last resident of the Conservation Center:  Adonis, the one-winged bald eagle.

We certainly applaud the work the AWCC does and didn't mind paying our donation to go drive around and check out some animals we might never see otherwise, but it was just one of those moments that kept getting more and more bizarre the longer we were there.

And now, bonus cat picture...

Solar powered kitties!