Sunday, February 27, 2011

Running through my brain

  • It's Sunday and I'm preparing for a Safe Church Training in just a half hour. In other words, in a half hour I will be leading a group of people in a discussion on Child Abuse awareness and how we can keep kids safe at our church. Doesn't matter how many times I watch the videos, I still get a little sick to my stomach every time.
  • In about a month I am heading to Galveston, Texas with some folks from the church and another church group to do Hurricane Ike relief work there. A part of me feels like I'm cheating on Pearlington.
  • Two weeks from today I get to give the morning message aka sermon at the church. For some reason this clip keeps running through my head. It may work it's way into my least one part of the line..."but I can't help it!" :)
  • We had a smattering of snow Saturday morning. I woke in time to see some flakes fall from the sky to the ground. It's a big deal here. Last time I remember snow at our house, I was in the 6th grade. That was a while ago folks!
  • This weekend is Quilt Fair Weekend for Yo Momma. We went out yesterday and spent a few hours wandering around the displays. Yo Momma has a quilt on display. I am amazed at how much time and thought is put into the quilts...some are amazingly beautiful. I decided, though, that I'm not much for the 'artistic' quilts. Give me something pretty traditional and I will be just fine...though none of those yo-yo quilts!!
That's all for now!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Not a techie

I am not a techie. That is, I am not one who is so technology minded that I speak the lingo correctly, nor do I understand every nuance of what happens with computers and electronic equipment. I figure things out as I go along and get what I need done. Sometimes this need requires me to go someplace and purchase items to enhance the workings of the equipment and computers that I use. I usually come out of those places feeling like I know absolutely nothing and should never step in the store again.

Take today. Lovely Church Couple recently purchased a new computer for the church sanctuary. It's big, people. We went from 518MB to 1.5Terabytes. BIG!!! What I didn't realize, when I doing the research on the computer and such, is that the adapters that go to the monitors and projectors would be different on the new computer. So, as I was taking everything carefully out of the box, checking the cords that ran from the old computer to the projector converter box with the back of the new computer, I knew there was a problem. I called in some help. Then I took matters in my hands, took pictures of the back of the new computer, took the paper that came with the new computer and headed to the computer supply store.

Guy behind the counter was at first kind and helpful. I explained, I need a VGA and DVI out on the computer to connect to a monitor and the converter box for the multiple projectors. The computer has a DVI and HDMI out, no VGA. Was there a way to convert those? He handed me a DVI to VGA adapter. Yeah. No. I have that. I don't need that. Tried again. I need a VGA and DVI out on the computer. There is a DVI, (I pointed to the picture on the paper) I have a DVI to VGA adapter, can I convert the HDMI to a VGA or DVI output? Blank look and then the question came "what are you trying to do?" ARGH! Again, I pointed at the pictures, I used the words that I knew to use and finally a dawning reality upon the face of the Guy behind the Counter. He reached to the packet, directly next to the adapter he had previous picked up and said "Is this what you want?" to which I replied "YES!!!"

Still, as I was leaving the store with my newly purchased $40 part (geesh), I could tell that Guy behind the Counter was very skeptical that I knew anything at all about what I needed. In fact, I'm pretty sure that he was thinking I would be back to return my HDMI to DVI thing-a-ma-jig within an hour. But I showed him! I returned to church confident in my abilities to plug in the adapters and get the screens all set up and ready for Sunday morning services. Two hours later, not only was everything plugged in correctly (with a little maneuvering...that adapter thing-a-ma-jig took up a little too much space but I made it all fit!), programs installed and updated but I had already figured out the problem with the sound cord, had figured out how to upload a song library from another computer onto the new computer and was deep into the new software that I had installed, trying to get the program together for Sunday morning. Oh and I had eaten lunch too. Ha! Take that Guy behind the Counter.

I may not be a techie, but I can get things done. I am woman... :)

Sunday, February 20, 2011


Papa Bear was the Athletic Director at our local High School for 30 years or so. As his child, I always got roped into helping with various athletic events. Usually selling tickets or stamping hands. When I started in Youth Ministry, the one event I always was "volunteered" for was the Football Jamboree. About 8 years ago, a few youth workers in the area and I approached one of the local groups and volunteered to help with not only the Football Jamboree in August but the Basketball finals in February.

Last night was Basketball Finals again. I do not love stamping hands and being a hard-nose. I can do it, I just don't love it. I'd rather have fun and laugh with people than be the big meanie at the door who tells the random people that even though they:
A.) have a player on the team
B.) go to school at the school
C.) bought the loyalty pass to the high school their child attends
D.) were on the team at one point but not anymore
E.) at some point in time once coached a team at some high school somewhere
they still have to pay to get into the LEAGUE FINAL GAMES. Really, people, it's cheaper than a movie, just as long and not only can you talk during the whole thing, you can yell! Though you'll have to eat your popcorn in the lobby.

But I digress. Last night was the big Finals. The girls game came first. The Knights vs. The Sharks. The Knights dominated the first half of the game but in the second half The Sharks came back with a vengeance. So much so that at the sound of the buzzer at the end of the 4th quarter the score was tied. The game went into overtime. Back and forth across the court these girls ran, fighting for each point and chance to dribble and shoot the ball. At the last buzzer of the four minutes of overtime they had each scored...right back into a tied game. 2nd overtime. Again they fought, they worked, they ran, they dribbled, they shot. The last 10 seconds of the game came, The Knights were leading by one point. The tension in the room was fierce, the competition on the court was fierce as well. At the last second one of the lady Sharks got the ball and sent the ball flying...right into the net. The buzzer sounded and The Sharks won by ONE POINT. Fiercely fought game. (I use the word "fought" deliberately...there was much rolling around on the ground clutching the basketball to one's chest, with other players trying to snatch said ball from the hands of their opponents. I forgot at times that it was basketball.)

A couple of hours later the boys game was getting ready to be played. In line stood one of The Knight players with her parents. I waved the daughter through the door saying "She just played, she can get in for free." (see, I can be nice at the door) and then I heard these words come from the mouth of the Lady Knight's father..."Yeah, but she lost." Knife to the heart.

I defended this Lady Knight saying "She played hard, though! I watched her!" but my words fell on deaf ears. It didn't matter how hard she had worked, Lady Knight had lost and according to her dad losing wasn't good enough. I wanted to kick the father right out of the building as my heart broke for this young woman who was clearly told her worth depended on that win, not on the energy she put into the game.

That's how we are conditioned, though, isn't it? If we don't win, we fail and failing means that we are less than, worth less, not as highly favored, not as good, as smart, as capable, as lovely, get the point I'm sure. As I stood there, watching the Lady Knight walk away, I grieved the damage that was happening in her at that moment. I ached for the young woman who needed to know that the final score wasn't everything, that giving her all really did matter. I wanted to shout from the rafters, fill up the gym with words of praise for a game well played and a heart that gave it's all, so that this one Lady Knight would know that her worth, her value didn't come from a score but from her efforts, her heart that fought a tough battle.

Words from a stranger, though, can't erase the damage already done by words from a Dad.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Round three

All week my shoulders have been getting tighter and tighter and tighter. My friend K has been known to tell me on many occasions to "stop wearing your shoulders as earrings." As my stress levels rose all week I kept repeating a mantra "happiest place on earth, happiest place on earth, happiest place on earth". Tomorrow morning at way-too-early-o'clock in the morning I will be getting up, finishing my bag packing and heading out the door. First for Star$ and then to Grammy B's house where I will meet up with my traveling friends, N, Train Guy, Adventure Boy and Grammy B. Sometime in the afternoon we will be scooping up K along the way and then, then my third trip to the Happiest Place on Earth will commence. Best birthday present I ever gave myself was a annual pass to the Happiest Place on Earth.

Fun is going to be had (meltdowns, most likely as well), pictures will be taken and most importantly, the stress of the week will be sloughed off these shoulders as I enjoy being a kid again. The stress will be there when I get home, but for now, I'm gonna enjoy my godsons, enjoy my birthday present to me again and enjoy the fantasy of the Happiest Place on Earth...and be grateful for the memories being made.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The wind

The wind has been stirring the last few days. At some moments it whips around, making the chimes outside my bedroom window ring, churning the clothesline line around in it's holder, adding it's own creak and groan to the chimes, rustling the leaves on the ground and whistling through the trees. The wind has been busy.

Saturday the wind was warm. Too warm for a Saturday in February. At 8:45am it felt like the warm wind that blows during July and August. Sunday's wind was much the same. Not good.

The wind is stirring up the pollens, the things that make my eyes itchy and throat scratchy. It blows the smell of the acacia trees through my car windows and the blossoms of the tree around, leaving a yellow film over everything. I don't really like acacia trees. The tree branches outside my office window groan and creak with the wind, as well. Every so often there is a crick-creak-crack as a branch gives way. It's interesting that I never see the crashing branch but I can hear it through the wind.

As the leaves scatter, as the pollens spread, as the chimes ring out, the wind reminds me of cleansing, a rearranging of things, of moving. There is symbolism in the wind, a reminder that all things change, one moment softly and gently, another with such force that it takes my breath away. The wind can bring destruction, it can bring can also bring Mary Poppins. :)

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Ditching youth group

I ditched High School group this week. Being the leader, that's a big deal. The Middle School Leader was going to be gone on Middle School night, so we just switched places. High school group wasn't canceled or locked outside or anything. I was responsible.

Why did I ditch youth group? To go see these people.

For those who don't know the two people on the right are Michael W. Smith and Amy Grant. Yo Momma, Kanda, Harold and I went north about 3 hours for their concert. Kanda got great tickets (third row!) plus a chance to go to a Q & A session before hand. It was a fantastic evening, full of great music, laughter and tears. I would ditch youth group again in a heartbeat to go to the concert again.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

For a friend...

Who knows who they prayer for you today, that God's love will indeed rescue you.
Love you.

Kathryn Scott--Love Rescue Me