Monday, May 31, 2010

It doesn't seem like MONDAY

Childe Hassam's

We have a steady rain now on this
Memorial Day. It looks a bit like this
painting. Drippy.

Today seems like an extra day.
An extra weekend day.
A gift of time to have a cookout
or family and friends in or be
out on a lake or to go away. I
went up to Boone on Saturday
so I am very thankful for another
extra day that is not really a weekday!
None of the things I listed are what
we are doing! But many have their
plans changed with the rain. Me.
I love rainy days to puddle around

If you dropped in , you would find
Oreo ( our kitten) asleep ON the kitchen
table and some of us humming Wicked
songs. The some of us are only two of
us! Emma and myself. Defying Gravity!
We belt it out just like we are on Broadway!

We say goodbye this week to dear friends.
They will be back to move when the house
sells. We will see them again as they move
to the next state West of here. But it is not
the same. So Emma and I tear up with the
last song from Wicked: For Good.
I've heard it said
That people come into our lives for a reason
Bringing something we must learn
And we are led
To those who help us most to grow
If we let them
And we help them in return
Well, I don't know if I believe that's true
But I know I'm who I am today
Because I knew you...
But because I knew you
I have been changed for good

It well may be
That we will never meet again
In this lifetime
So let me say before we part
So much of me
Is made of what I learned from you
You'll be with me
Like a handprint on my heart
And now whatever way our stories end
I know you have re-written mine
By being my friend...

Because I knew you

I have been changed for good

Such great words.
Such good lyrics.
Such a great tune to celebrate
friendship! I am thankful for
my friends in the same way.

holy experience

Friday, May 28, 2010

Late Mother's Day Celebration

It was a Mother and Daughter Evening with my neighbor
last night to see Wicked! We were up on the second to last
row with binoculars. Amazing costumes and scenery !
We'll be singing today some of the most popular songs
( Popular is one of them) and chuckling at the humor.
We were glad to have Leann with us . She saw it on the
last tour, so at Intermission , she told us to think about
who is going to become the Tin Man, Scarecrow, and the
Lion! There were clues.
What are you doing this weekend?

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Wonder and wow.....

I was in wonder.
I was in awe.
Gordan got to go to the RUF
cookout last night and start
Tim Keller's new study:
Gospel in Life: Grace changes
Not part of Orientation
which starts today. Part of
having an older brother who is
working up in Blowing Rock this
summer. But then, was it part of
Gordan's orientation. Now he knows
the RUF leader. WOW.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Heading to the mts.

A glorious morning to take
Gordan ( 4th son) up to the mts.
for Freshman Orientation. It
will be quieter around here in the
Fall. I'll miss this guy!

I've always wondered at the paths my children
take as God leads them on His plan
for their lives. So I'm watching, praying,
and listening about this son!

Monday, May 24, 2010

I prayed my gratitude.

That is a sentence that Wendell
Berry wrote. It is on page 252 of Jayber
Crow. Jayber is struggling with what
prayer is. So this morning as another
Monday of Gratitude is here again,
I prayed and thought about gratitude.
Pray it.

The weekend was busy. New baby coming
to a dear friend's son and his wife. I am
thankful for this first grandchild to be born
this summer and my friend becoming a
grandma! No one knows the baby's sex or
the names picked out. That family likes
surprises! Times of celebration mean
a baby shower. This one was for both
the dad and mom to be. I liked that!

All the choirs led worship last night at our
church. I realized if choirs don't exist that
hymns will probably not be written , esp.
for choirs. Revivals came in the beginning
of the last 3 centuries and hymn writing
flowed out to strengthen and bring praises
unto the Lord for worship. I am so thankful
for good music. Could be humming some
from last night as the fragrance lingers!

One year ago our oldest married ( yesterday).
I am so thankful for them. He takes the last
CPA exam tomorrow and needs to pass!
( pray if you read this today! thanks!)

"I prayed that terrible prayer: 'Thy Will
Be Done.' Having so prayed , I prayed for
strength. That seemed reasonable and right
enough. As did praying for forgiveness and
the grace to forgive. I prayed unreasonably,
foolishly, hopelessly, that everybody in
Port William might be blessed and happy--
the ones I loved and the ones I did not.
I prayed for gratitude."
from Jayber Crow

A good thing to pray for!
Practice it today.
It was Pentacost Sunday yesterday.
I am thankful for the Holy Spirit,
teaching and bringing light unto
my path:

From Luci Shaw's Angles of Light

If we understood everything we wouldn't
be baffled. But mystery lives; somehow
without witchcraft or chicanery

we collect sounds and colors in a skyward
dish, like fruit in a bowl, and channel them
into verisimilitude--faces talking at us

from the tube's glass eye. Hallways of fog
enfold us in enigma. And then, the marvel of
window glass--how can anything be

hard enough to stop the hand and
hold its smudge while letting through this
soft light? The one wheat kernel that

breeds a thousand--a miracle of
loaves over and over again.
The stars, invisible in the blind day

revealed, thick as pollen, by the absence
of light. A billion spiky grass blades that melt
into a perfectly flat horizon. The Holy Ghost

waking me in my bedroom, drenching my
dry heart with fluid syllables, breathing
flesh into the fetal bones of this poem.
holy experience

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Mercy, the daughter of Grace

All of these booklets got gone
when they were put on a few
Sundays ago: 50 Days of Prayer
for the PCA. It is written by my
pastor and is online. It is based
this year on The Sermon on the
Mount. I'm getting
them daily for prayer for a church
wide missions trip, right here in
our City: Seek the City.

I love these words in red:

You can't make yourself merciful any more than you can make yourself pitiful. Being merciful grows out of receiving mercy, just as forgiveness flows from the heart of the forgiven (6:14-15). Mercy and Forgiveness are twin sisters, the daughters of Grace. Mercy judges not. It could care less how you got in such a mess or why you can't get yourself out of trouble. Mercy simply stops, bends down, begins to bind up the wounds, and quietly whispers, "I'm here to help." Mercy is the grace that relieves the consequences of sin in the lives of both the sinner and those sinned against. Mercy is grace in action. Tim Keller says, "Jesus uses the work of mercy to show us the essence of righteousness God requires in our relationships."

Friday, May 21, 2010

Still on the backporch

Here is a beautiful children's book
that a friend showed me this morning.
We are almost out of this age level
books, except we do love a good
children's book even if "we" means

A Nest for Celeste: A Story about Art,
Inspiration, and the Meaning of Home

by Henry Cole,
who is an excellent illustrator.
Take a look:

On the back porch

Emma and her
friend Linnea
4 years ago when
Linnea moved here.

I am out here on our back
porch as it is cooler and the
cloudiness is quite lovely!
It gets too hot in the summer
to sit outside in the South!
The tea was wonderful , esp.
the way the ladies blessed our
dear friend and fellow teacher
as she moves back to Tenn.
It is hard to let people go.
Emma is making a Scrapbook
with my friend's daughter, Linnea,
at the kitchen table as I write. That
Scrapbooking projects always take
lots of time and once you get back
into it, you don't want to stop. You
wonder why you don't do it
all the time! Even in 4 years, those
two girls have grown up.

Photos of the tea soon by Emma!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

TEA in the morning

is a Going
Away Tea
for a dear
friend and
fellow teacher
in our Gileskirk
Tutorial, so
the china will
come out and
the scones will
be made: lemon curd and blueberry
scones ( Tyler Florence)
plus other breakfast tea foods.
Julia Child's quiches will also
don the table. YUM. Got to get
to work. I'll get my local homegrown
photographer to use her camera!

Emma with her cousin Grace:
Bridesmaid and flower girl
a year ago May 22 at the
Rehearsal Dinner
night before our oldest's


Monday, May 17, 2010

The Timing of Grace

Just reading Ann Voscamp's
wonderful blog this morning
as she has taught me every Monday
to think about Gratitude. I start
thinking about the start of the
weekend. Weekends bring a
different rhythm and this one
was full of celebration.

I thankful for my friend Barb
who is moving with Wycliffe Bible
Translators to Europe. She gave
a tea on Saturday for her friends
and gave us unhurried time ,
delicious breakfast , and the gift
of her love. Maybe she will start
a blog when she moves in August!

Saturday also included a graduation
ceremony which my son was not apart
of but one of my students who has come
to my house for 4 years! I was amazed
at the end to find out the interweavings
of lives when another parent of one of
my students KNEW a very dear old friend-
neighbor of mine. Edith Schaeffer is so
right in her book Tapestry.

Absolutely amazing projects given in our
Gileskirk class last week. The Spirit teaches
and did so in very deep truths. I'm so
thankful for seeing growth and grace in
their academics, orthodoxy to orthopraxy.
One student wrote poems based on L.L .
Barkat's poetry book: InsideOut.
She started writing a poem a day but
it turned into illustrating them and like
most of us: how do we do that everyday.
She realized alot about calling and the
joy of her talents in art and words.

Really good sermon yesterday.
I am full of gratitude and praise
for the Lord bore fruit that afternoon.
Yesterday Dr. Michael
Milton. Pres. of RTS
, preached on
"The Grace of Locust Shells:
How God Redeems Us from the Pain
of the Past."( Joe l 2: 24 -27).
I've heard him preach before and it is
what I think Spurgeon would sound like!
Amazingly, God gave me wisdom in talking
to my twin about some pain in the past
and he lives whereI grew up:
Grace spilling over into Scott's life!

holy experience

Friday, May 14, 2010

Bubbles and Books

Wedding couple last
May 23 leaving
from the reception.

Guy in center is Gordan , blowing
bubbles , graduates high school.
Guy to the left: his brother up at App.State
where Gordan will go. Couple to the right:
my third oldest brother Stuart and his wife Sally.

I love the bubbles!
I'm done with teaching for the year!
Yeah. Our high school students
amazed us as they finished 40 Hour
Projects this week at an Evening
Presentation AND took the long final.
I graduate another son! I need to ask
him what books he would put on this
list. He has a wide interest and breadth
already of books. He just took Italo
Calvino's book ( just picked up from the
library) "Why Read the Classics?" up
to his room. I hope I get to read it!

For me , now that I can breathe and even
get to some gardening in the heat finally.
I started a list in my mind but not in order
of influence:

1. For the Children's Sake: Susan Macaulay
2. Orthodoxy: G.K. Chesterton
3. Francis and Edith Schaeffer
4. Luci Shaw's poems
5. Wendell Berry
6. CS Lewis
7. Elizabeth Goudge
8. new author and artist: Makoto Fujimura
( currently rereading and using with my lit. class)
9. George Grant, lectures and book lists and books
hmmm.....will rework this list and add, not delete
and see who else.

Why Read the Classics?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

books that influence

Which would you say did that
for you: helped in sanctification,
gave you joy for the story, brought
you something you needed right then?
Here is an article at Books and
Culture on Agents of Influence by
John Wilson:

From the Bible comes my understanding of who we are, what ails us, and what hope we might share. But apart from what matters most—first and last things—reading and listening to this mighty book of books turned out to prepare me for a lifetime of reading. (If you turn the page, you'll find Mark Noll reviewing a book by Robert Alter about the influence of the King James Version on the prose of six American writers.) It was far and away my most formative job training.

That article is on The KJV Effect:
American Prose and the King James Version

by Mark Noll.

Here is a link to Books and Culture
podcasts ( they are short) like on
Luci Shaw on her new poetry book
Harvesting Fog and a Canadian poet
Suzanne Buffam, whom I would like to
get to know through her work.

What would you add?

Monday, May 10, 2010

Late night Gratitude

Today is Monday and that is
Gratitude Monday. I started
thinking about this post during
the weekend.

I am thankful for the perseverance
of my son Brad at the Police Academy.
The past weeks he has been tazered,
pepper sprayed and today was the
big fight: against a 6'8", almost 300
pound policeman: for 4 minutes.
Brad is almost 6' 5"and felt like a midget.
He has a bruise on his forehead and
a small cut below his lip but he survived.

I'm thankful for the chivalry I saw in the
Cadets on Friday night as they ran 5K who
went back after crossing the finish line
as a squad to pick up the ones,fell behind
in the race. Not all are good runners!

On Mother's Day , we sang Praise to the Lord,
the Almighty in church. Years ago I could
hardly get through it with my eyes welling
with tears. That was THE song I burst out
with upon returning to my mother's bedroom
after her funeral. She had passed away in
her bed. I just started singing .
Noone was in there, but the
Presence of the Lord. SO who knew that on
Sunday at my church, on Mother's Day?

Sunday, May 9, 2010


All my children and the newest : bride of the oldest.
My mom helping my two oldest.
She has 21 grandchildren and 8
children.We all miss her.She passed
away 6 years ago.

The boys with their new little sister.
Now they are 26, 24, 21, 18 and she is almost 13.

Friday, May 7, 2010

5K Run

Not me ,but the Police Academy
ran in formation tonight in a 5K
( 3 mile ) race in downtown
Charlotte. Brad, second son , ran.
It seemed like summer.
Hot and humid already.It was fun
to see the Academy. Every night we hear the
story of the day: pepper spray and tazer

It's been awhile since I've been downtown.
Oldest son waited on us and walked down
the blocks with us. He works in the city.
New Modern Art Museum is next to his
firm's new building. We managed to walk
through the Overstreet walkways to
get back to our car, which was pretty cool.
Pretty empty and no big events going on
besides runners!

I want to work where my other son
started today for his summer job in
Blowing Rock ( Jan Karon setting of Mitford).
Well, actually I would like to stay there!
( not normal hotel prices either!!!)
This was the summer home of Victorian
artist: Elliot Daingerfield. Evan went in
a suit for a dishwasher job! They gave him
something better: valet. I think it was the

Westglow Resort and Spa

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Day of Prayer

Rembrandt, St. Peter in Prison

Don't forget this priviledge
to pray openly , corporately,
privately today. Most nations
can not do this.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

New books: Luci Shaw and Wendell Berry

I just ordered these two
just published:

Harvesting Fog
by Luci Shaw
This is her 30th book:

New from Wendell Berry, that farmer , essayist,
fiction writer and poet. I love that he is a poet
most especially. Not sure why.
Here is a new one which you can tell by the title
what it is about, but with Berry, it is more than

What Matters?: Economics For A Renewed Commonwealth, Wendell Berry,  Herman Daly, 1582436061

Monday, May 3, 2010

Gratitude Journal

As I read Holy Experience blog this
morning , rain , welcome rain, falls,
I think upon what I am thankful for.
I've just had a double digit
birthday ( two nickels) and a dear friend
gave me a tea. I was moved by the beauty
of friendship. It does that ~~ moves you
to love and give and be thankful.

I was thankful for my husband as we went
to the foothills of the Appalachains to a small
hamlet for lunch! Spring was arriving in the
leaves! All sorts of shades of green. We are in
summer green already from a few hot days
that arrived early and then left. Summer tried
to return yesterday! So humid and hot. That
is why the rain is so welcome!

I was thankful for my children who all said
and gave me such wonderful gifts. They are
gifts to me.

I started my next Book Review book from
Thomas Nelson Publishers on Isaac Newton!
I read it out loud to Ken in the car as we
traveled on Saturday. We are awaiting his
discovery of gravity but we both were fascinated
with who this man was. A good biography gives
the reader a sense of knowing the person. More
on that when I am finished.
I am always thankful for a good book!

holy experience