Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Vote; for the Right to Complain

October 26, 2010.

Outside my window...pouring rain. They described it as a "weather bomb" and it's done a lot of damage. It's dark, windy and raining.
I am thinking...I'm happy to see they sentenced Russell Williams to two life sentences for two murders, but in a case like this, with video evidence of his guilt, I wish Canada had the death penalty. They also stripped him of his rank of Colonel and kicked him out of the military. It's ironic that people were shocked by photos of him in women's clothing. This is the kind of thing (cross-dressing) that they celebrate during Shame Week. Why are they now surprised at the results of such perversions? Don't they know that pornography is addictive and progressive?
I am thankful for...a good report from the GI specialist for my daughter. No diseases or major diet changes.
From the kitchen...beef and vegetable stir fry.
I am wearing...jeans, a black and white striped blouse, a grey sweater.
I am reading...A Memory Between Us by Sarah Sundin about a WW2 pilot and nurse.
I am hoping...my cousin's five year old daughter gets better. She was hospitalized for a viral infection that caused swelling in her face.
I am hearing...the heavy rains outside the train.
Around the house...I voted yesterday in the Municipal election. I say you've got to vote so you have the right to complain. Everyone I voted for, won. I'm happy about the result in the Toronto mayoralty election as well, although I'm not in that city anymore, except for work. The taxes are too high. I finished painting two pieces of furniture, a table and a dresser, for the guest room. I bought the paint for the walls. Hopefully, I can get to it next week. October is Clergy Appreciation month, so we had our Pastor and his wife over last night for a roast beef dinner and a hot tub. He'll be 70 next month. No official plans to retire, and that's fine with me, but I have a feeling it'll happen suddenly when it does happen, especially with his wife's health concerns.
One of my favourite things...rejoicing with friends when they get good news. One of my friends received word today that her book was going to be published! This was a long time in coming. It encourages me to keep working, although I'm so far from that point. I don't even have a complete first draft of anything!
Some plans for the week...work three nights. I switched Thursday for Monday, so I already had my long weekend. Friday night I'll shop for food, Saturday I'll clean and bake, Saturday evening we have College and Careers at a friend's place, where I'll speak on Radical Hospitality/Planning a Dinner Party. On Sunday, my husband and another man at church will be inducted as elders. My eldest will be coming home for that, but my youngest will miss it since she'll be on a retreat and the date of the service was changed. We'll be having the guest Pastor and his wife over for dinner on Sunday. I was contemplating taking part in NaNoWriMo, which is National Novel Writing Month, in which you write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days in November. My husband doesn't like the idea, since we already see so little of each other. Too bad, because it's too big a challenge to do without the support of your family cheering you on. I already came up with a concept, although I don't have a plot yet. It would have been historical fiction, set in WW2 Finland, during the Winter War. I've already done the research and had about forty scenes in my mind, ready to go. Maybe next year, or some other month, or maybe I'll start anyway, without signing up. No one reads it anyway, it's just a way to motivate you to finish something. They say there's nothing like good old public humiliation to inspire you. Although I should probably just finish one of my other works-in-progress.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Demon: A Memoir by Tosca Lee

What is Man?

This novel was gripping. A writer/editor named Clay is approached by a stranger who insists that he must write the man's memoir. He takes different forms every time he comes to Clay to continue his story. He is a demon and he recounts Lucifer's fall, the creation of the world, the creation and fall of man, the flood ,Satan's hatred of God's people throughout history, the account of Job, the coming of Christ; His temptation, ministry, crucifixion and resurrection.

It's an interesting perspective on the old, old story. It reviews Redemptive history from the point of view of the enemy of man. The demons could not believe that God would lavish His love and favour on this mud-man, made of dust, or that He would continue to forgive them when they rebelled against Him. Even the demons were amazed by grace, yet it just made them hate man even more. Too late, they realized that what they thought was their moment of triumph, the crucifixion of the God-man, Jesus, was actually their defeat. It was finished when God paid the price for the creature 's sin.

"But here now, is the crux of it"--he stared at me--"there are those of us damned for one single, failing moment, while you have the favor of an utterly partial God, willing to offer second chances again and again and again."

Beautiful. It made me appreciate my salvation by grace, even more.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Out of the Depths

October 20, 2010.

Outside my window...a pleasant fall day. It's supposed to get colder by the end of the week, though. It may even snow!
I am thinking...so the Chilean miners were rescued this week. It was some good news in a world full of tragedies, disasters, wars and violence. However, did you notice the t-shirt the miners all put on over top of their overalls? Not one reporter commented on the fact that they all wore it, or would say what it said on it. I saw "Jesus" on the sleeve. The front says, "Gracias Senor" or thank you God, on the front. On the back there is a verse from the Psalms about the Lord holding the depths of the earth in his hands. Amazing how they can't bring themselves to acknowledge God at all, even though the miners weren't ashamed to do so. They hugged their President, but they thanked God. I also heard that two of them accepted Christ because of their ordeal.
I am thankful for...good health care. My daughter will see a specialist tomorrow. That's only a week after her second trip to the emerg. He'll probably order more tests, but we should get some answers soon.
From the kitchen...rice, crudites and dip, fish in a cream sauce with peppers.
I am wearing...my uniform. I'm at work.
I am reading...The Crimson Cipher by Susan Page Davis, about code breakers during WW one. I like it. They say it's pre WW1, although it's 1915. I find it funny, though, that in books written by Americans, they often talk about the dates of the war only in terms of when the U.S. was in it. Ask most Americans the dates of WW2, and they'd say 1942-1945 instead of 1939-1945. The same is true for WW1.
I am hoping...my daughter's appointment goes well tomorrow.
I am hearing...a quiet unit.
Around the house...We bought some coffee tables for the basement. My mom bought herself a couch and kitchen set for her apartment. My husband cancelled his fishing trip last weekend, mostly out of concern for our daughter, who ended up in emerg twice last week with severe abdominal pain. I can't say I'm sad he stayed home. I miss him when he's gone. I'm so needy, I know. We cleaned out a storage closet. He's better at that than I am. I would tend to hoard, while he is ruthless. Everything out. Saturday there was a ladies' meeting at church. I was in the nursery on Sunday morning. All those screaming kids reminded me why those days are behind me. I have no patience. I also picked up a memory stick from a friend who has typed all my stories into it, so now they're in electronic format. I just have to train myself to write on the computer, instead of on paper, which is my preference. I'm old school, I guess. I've been searching for ideas for an amuse bouche to serve at an upcoming dinner party. It's the one-bite teaser you serve before appetizers. There are many recipes and pictures out there. I tested one the other day. I'll post the picture. It's a cherry tomato on a basil leaf, with shaved Parmesan. It packs a kick, so one is enough. I also heat the tomato first. It's an option, but I'll test a few more. It will have to go with whatever my menu is, which I haven't decided on yet.
One of my favourite things...good books. I stopped at the Christian bookstore to get some story books for the nursery at church, and I scored myself four books. I know, I have a problem.
Some plans for the week...work three nights. Clean and cook. Church on Sunday.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

National Daughter's Week

Photocredit: Sarah West

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Thanksgiving 2010

Oct. 12, 2010.

Outside my window...a sunny fall day. The leaves on the red maples on our street are a brilliant red, but will be gone within two weeks. Then it will be a dismal winter until the Spring.
I am thinking...it's sad how so many people think their baptism is an end instead of a beginning. I've seen it too many times. They may not say it, but it's like they feel they've gotten their ticket to heaven, and now they can live as they like. It's sad, really.
I am thankful for...healthy children. On Thanksgiving morning, yesterday, my youngest daughter (18), woke up with severe abdominal pain and nausea. My husband took her to emerg and was with her there until 7 p.m. They did bloodwork, an x-ray, and an ultrasound, suspecting appendicitis. It was five hours before they started an i.v. and gave her morphine. The tests were inconclusive, and they sent her home once her pain was under control. She was most disappointed that she couldn't eat. I had stayed behind to finish the prep. We had 16 people over for dinner. It was difficult because I was so distracted, worrying about her, but it turned out well. I'm thankful for free, reliable health care.
From the kitchen...leftovers. Yesterday we had stuffed mushroom caps, apricot brie and crackers, turkey, stuffing, gravy, garlic mashed potatoes, whole roasted lamb, curried goat, rice and peas, yellow and green beans, salad, honey'd root vegetables, ham, blueberry pie, pumpkin pie, chocolate mousse. It was delish! We'll be eating leftovers for days, which is fine with me.
I am wearing...purple yoga pants, a purple top, a grey sweater and a black windbreaker.
I am reading...Demon: a Memoir, by Tosca Lee. I'm loving it. It's along the lines of Screwtape Letters and is an interesting perspective on the old, old story. I'll post a review when I'm done. This past week I also read The Guardians by Jack Cavanaugh and The Dawn of Heaven Breaks, by Sharon James, about contemplating eternity.
I am hoping...to find the words to say to a relative I'm concerned about.
I am hearing...the train.
Around the house...we managed to buy a few decorative pieces for the basement family room, so it's a start. Also my daughter moved over into the other room that she painted and the guest room is now empty, waiting for me to decide on a colour scheme so I can paint it. My mom is settled into her place downstairs but needs to buy more furniture. On Saturday, we had family photos done by Sarah West. I've only seen a few of them, so far. I also launched the facebook page for our church. If you're on facebook, search for Faith Baptist Church, Scarborough.
One of my favourite things...GOOD leftovers.
Some plans for the week...work three nights. I'll have a student with me on Wednesday and Thursday night. I'll be a fishing widow this weekend, since my husband will be going to Manitoulin for a fishing trip with our Finnish guy friends from Sault Ste. Marie. I'll be lonely. :( There's a ladies' meeting at church on Saturday morning, then I'm going shopping with my youngest daughter. Church on Sunday.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Full Life

Oct. 4, 2010.

Outside my window...a cool, rainy day. The leaves are changing. I know it looks nice, but I'm a summer girl.
I am thinking...so all my worrying was for nothing. My MRI was "normal for my age", whatever that means, and my audiology test was also within normal range. I've also noticed my hearing is improved and my headaches are gone. It seems to have been affected only as long as the reno was going on. I didn't think I was stressed, but I seem to have internalized it. I tend to do that, then I'm still surprised when I get heart palpitations or headaches. So I'm NOT dying of some dread disease, that I know of.
I am thankful for...good friends. We had a couple visiting from out of town this weekend. They're so easy-going. We ate in, we ate out, we went in the hot tub and sauna, we walked, we watched a movie, we laughed at things on youtube, went to church, had another meal together, and said our good-byes.
From the kitchen...Atlantic salmon, salad, and corn on the cob (just a little bit).
I am wearing...jeans, a purple sweater, and a warm fall jacket.
I am reading...The Peacemakers by Jack Cavanaugh, set in the 1960's.
I am hoping...to get through another week of four nights. I'm so tired.
I am hearing...the train.
Around the house...we'll have a full house this weekend. Both girls will be home. We're hosting 16 family members for Thanksgiving dinner on Monday.
One of my favourite things...finding an author I like and then reading everything they wrote. I'm a faithful reader.
Some plans for the week...work four nights, date night, help my daughter paint her room, shop for home furnishings, cook, clean, shop, bake and then entertain family. Oh, and I need to make a harvest display for church. We give the food away to a needy family afterwards.