Monday, May 31, 2004

or, Smells that make me happy, some of which only exist in my memory (in no particular order)

- the English roses sitting in a cup on the kitchen counter
- my husband when he hugs me
- freshly brewed coffee
- rain on the hot dry grass
- my hands after pruning my sage bushes
- my five year old daughter's hair
- freshly cut grass
- the laundry when I'm taking it off the clothesline
- the back yard when Mike's coooking on the grill
- a newborn baby
- summer nights in Georgia (honeysuckle and red Georgia clay)
- the salt air in St. Augustine
- breakfast at Mike's grandmother's house (bacon, eggs, and coffee!)
- any meal that someone else cooks
- the way sheets smell when they're first taken out of the linen closet
- Red Deliciious apples
- new books
- old books
- any book!
- my facial cleanser
- Mike's uniforms when I iron them
- the home improvement store
- compost when it's done
- Aunt Nelda's pasture (cows, grass, and the faint smell of the catfish pond)
- "new car" smell
- the pine needle sachets my daughters made me
- the lavender in my garden
- brand new school supplies (paper and pencils and crayons...)
- dry leaves in the fall
- popcorn at the movie theater
- my Daddy's leather vest
- our house when I've been gone all day
- the boathouse at Lake Nasworthy
- my granddaddy's garage
- Hershey's kisses with almonds
- commuion wine
- the used book store downtown
- Coty Airspun Face Powder (it's the kind my grandmother used, my mother uses, and that's why I use it, too)
- Bath and Body Works "Juniper Breeze"
- olive and feta cheese pizza
- homemade bread
- the cream soups that my eldest makes
- the cedar boards Mike is using to build a fence around our back yard
- Uncle Lefty, who passed away decades ago (Old Spice, cigars, butterscotch candies, and axle grease)
- the woods behind the house where I grew up
- my grandmother's plum jam
- Paper White narcissus
- freshly painted walls
- Pond's Cold Cream
- chocolate chip cookies!

Sunday, May 30, 2004


Come, Holy Ghost, God and Lord!
Be all Thy graces now outpoured
On each believer’s mind and heart;
Thy fervent love to them impart.
Lord, by the brightness of Thy light
Thou in the faith dost men unite
Of every land and every tongue;
This to Thy praise, O Lord, our God, be sung.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Thou holy Light, Guide divine,
Oh, cause the Word of Life to shine!
Teach us to know our God aright
And call Him Father with delight.
From every error keep us free;
Let none but Christ our Master be
That we in living faith abide,
In Him, our Lord, with all our might confide.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Thou holy Fire, Comfort true,
Grant us the will Thy work to do
And in Thy service to abide;
Let trials turn us not aside.
Lord, by Thy power prepare each heart
And to our weakness strength impart
That bravely here we may contend,
Through life and death to Thee, our Lord, ascend.
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!

Words: Martin Luther, 1524
Music: "Komm, Heiliger Geist, Herre Gott," 15th Century melody

Tuesday, May 25, 2004

Paul salutes the Church
This week something leaped out at me that I know I've noticed before, but suddenly it seemed to be much more meaningful than before. Paul addressed his letters to the churches in a way that's pretty interesting (emphasis mine throughout):

Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle, separated unto the gospel of God.... To all that be in Rome, beloved of God, called to be saints: Grace to you and peace from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. (Romans 1:1,7)

Paul called to be an apostle of Jesus Christ through the will of God, and Sosthenes our brother, Unto the church of God which is at Corinth, to them that are sanctified in Christ Jesus, called to be saints, with all that in every place call upon the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, both theirs and ours: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. (I Corinthians 1:1-3)

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia: Grace be to you and peace from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. (II Corinthians 1:1-2)

Paul, an apostle, (not of men, neither by man, but by Jesus Christ, and God the Father, who raised him from the dead;) And all the brethren which are with me, unto the churches of Galatia: Grace be to you and peace from God the Father, and from our Lord Jesus Christ, (Galatians 1:1-3)

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus: Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. (Ephesians 1:1-2)

Paul and Timotheus, the servants of Jesus Christ, to all the saints in Christ Jesus which are at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ. (Phillipians 1:1-2)

Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timotheus our brother, To the saints and faithful brethren in Christ which are at Colosse: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (Colossians 1:1-2)

Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians which is in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace be unto you, and peace, from God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ. (I Thessalonians 1:1)

Paul, and Silvanus, and Timotheus, unto the church of the Thessalonians in God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ: Grace unto you, and peace, from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. (II Thessalonians 1:1-2)

Since we long ago realized that we would not find a denomination here that we agree with, we've had to search for a particular local church that we agree with and with whom we can worship. The one thing these greetings have in common, is that in every case Paul is addressing the believers in a particular city or region, that is, he's addressing the particular local churches in each case, he's not addressing denominations.

Even more significant than that, in the one place where he addresses something like denominationalism, he condemns it.

What would we do if suddenly everyone had to walk to church? There's no church within walking distance of our neighborhood, so we could invite all the Christian families close by to our house for worship service, but you know what? The only Christian families in our neighborhood I know and am friendly with are the one next door, and the one across the street, and they're both Roman Catholic.

There's a family down the street that I see dressed up and going someplace every Sunday morning, so I assume they're going to church, but, while I've met more Christians than this at homeschool meetings and such, the only other Christians I know in this whole town are the ones we've gone to church with, either at the base chapel, or the Lutheran and Episcopal churches, and they live so far away that we hardly ever see them during the week.

Sunday, May 23, 2004

Jumping on the bandwagon - though I don't have a parable to match Tim's and Matt's, I do just happen to have a copy of the Credo-Communionists' Version (wink, wink) handy, and noted this portion of Psalm 23 with interest, "Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of my children."

Saturday, May 22, 2004

So I have these blueberry bushes and though the bushes are small, each one has a pretty decent amount of berries, and they're getting plump and frosty-blue looking, and I have no idea what a ready-to-pick blueberry looks like! How do I know when they're ready?

Thursday, May 20, 2004

I wish I lived next door to Sora.
Everything I know about gardening I learned from a book - not that I'm knocking book-learning, it's just that some things are, I think, best learned from a real live person who can answer questions and point out problems, and trial-and-error is such an inefficient way to learn anything.

The plastic row cover backfired - evidently I didn't take it off often enough to keep it from getting too hot underneath it, and the corn and squash seeds were steamed to death. Of course that means that any weed seeds were steamed to death, too, so it wasn't a total loss. :-D

We replanted the corn, and this time we covered each little hill with a cloche made from a plactic one gallon milk jug with the bottom cut off. We left the lids off the jugs and the corn came up within a couple of days. It's about 6" tall now, so it's time to replant the squash seeds, then in another week or so, the beans. I hope it's not too late. Really it shouldn't be - we don't have frost here until well into November.

Tuesday, May 18, 2004

That's why I'm not online much these days. :-)

I made Easter dresses for the two youngest girls (and petticoats for Grace and Mosey, plus a slip for Lilian) this year, and I got so used to having something to do with my hands whenever we sit down just to talk, or to listen to a sermon online, that I had to get myself another few projects lined up to keep me busy with - well, that and we needed new summer clothes! I've found that the more I sew the more I enjoy it.

My current projects are two everyday dresses for myself in lightweight cottons, and T-shirt dresses for the youngest. This is the easy way to make cute play dresses for little girls - you just cut the bottom off of a t-shirt and gather a rectangle of fabric and sew it on for a skirt. I bought Madras plaids and calicos from Wal-Mart to go with various pink, blue, green, white, and yellow t-shirts for the three youngest. I'll be sewing for the two younger ones, and Mosey will be sewing her own.

If I ever find the cable to my camera, I'll upload some pictures!

Sunday, May 16, 2004

"Lo, children are an heritage of the LORD: and the fruit of the womb is his reward." Psalm 127:3
So, like, the only person I can think of who actually demanded that his inheritance be upon certain terms was the Prodigal Son, and he's not really, you know, a model Christian or anything.

Hey, I'm just sayin!

Saturday, May 15, 2004

For Valerie - a saved draft which I never published because I didn't have anything clever to say about what I've read or not read. :-p

The latest book meme
Highlight the books you've read from the following list:

Achebe, Chinua - Things Fall Apart
Agee, James - A Death in the Family
Austen, Jane - Pride and Prejudice
Baldwin, James - Go Tell It on the Mountain
Beckett, Samuel - Waiting for Godot
Bellow, Saul - The Adventures of Augie March
Brontë, Charlotte - Jane Eyre
Brontë, Emily - Wuthering Heights
Camus, Albert - The Stranger
Cather, Willa - Death Comes for the Archbishop
Chaucer, Geoffrey - The Canterbury Tales
Chekhov, Anton - The Cherry Orchard
Chopin, Kate - The Awakening
Conrad, Joseph - Heart of Darkness
Cooper, James Fenimore - The Last of the Mohicans
Crane, Stephen - The Red Badge of Courage
Dante - Inferno
de Cervantes, Miguel - Don Quixote
Defoe, Daniel - Robinson Crusoe
Dickens, Charles - A Tale of Two Cities
Dostoyevsky, Fyodor - Crime and Punishment
Douglass, Frederick - Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass
Dreiser, Theodore - An American Tragedy
Dumas, Alexandre - The Three Musketeers
Eliot, George - The Mill on the Floss
Ellison, Ralph - Invisible Man
Emerson, Ralph Waldo - Selected Essays
Faulkner, William - As I Lay Dying
Faulkner, William - The Sound and the Fury
Fielding, Henry - Tom Jones
Fitzgerald, F. Scott - The Great Gatsby
Flaubert, Gustave - Madame Bovary
Ford, Ford Madox - The Good Soldier
Goethe, Johann Wolfgang von - Faust
Golding, William - Lord of the Flies
Hardy, Thomas - Tess of the d'Urbervilles
Hawthorne, Nathaniel - The Scarlet Letter
Heller, Joseph - Catch 22
Hemingway, Ernest - A Farewell to Arms
Homer - The Iliad
Homer - The Odyssey

Hugo, Victor - The Hunchback of Notre Dame
Hurston, Zora Neale - Their Eyes Were Watching God
Huxley, Aldous - Brave New World (I read the first chapter or so and was so disgusted with it that I put it down.)
Ibsen, Henrik - A Doll's House
James, Henry - The Portrait of a Lady
James, Henry - The Turn of the Screw
Joyce, James - A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Kafka, Franz - The Metamorphosis
Kingston, Maxine Hong - The Woman Warrior
Lee, Harper - To Kill a Mockingbird
Lewis, Sinclair - Babbitt
London, Jack - The Call of the Wild
Mann, Thomas - The Magic Mountain
Marquez, Gabriel García - One Hundred Years of Solitude
Melville, Herman - Bartleby the Scrivener
Melville, Herman - Moby Dick
Miller, Arthur - The Crucible

Morrison, Toni - Beloved
O'Connor, Flannery - A Good Man is Hard to Find
O'Neill, Eugene - Long Day's Journey into Night
Orwell, George - Animal Farm
Pasternak, Boris - Doctor Zhivago
Plath, Sylvia - The Bell Jar
Poe, Edgar Allan - Selected Tales
Proust, Marcel - Swann's Way
Pynchon, Thomas - The Crying of Lot 49
Remarque, Erich Maria - All Quiet on the Western Front
Rostand, Edmond - Cyrano de Bergerac
Roth, Henry - Call It Sleep
Salinger, J.D. - The Catcher in the Rye
Shakespeare, William - Hamlet
Shakespeare, William - Macbeth
Shakespeare, William - A Midsummer Night's Dream
Shakespeare, William - Romeo and Juliet

Shaw, George Bernard - Pygmalion I saw the play - does that count?
Shelley, Mary - Frankenstein
Silko, Leslie Marmon - Ceremony
Solzhenitsyn, Alexander - One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
Sophocles - Antigone
Sophocles - Oedipus Rex

Steinbeck, John - The Grapes of Wrath
Stevenson, Robert Louis - Treasure Island
Stowe, Harriet Beecher - Uncle Tom's Cabin
Swift, Jonathan - Gulliver's Travels
Thackeray, William - Vanity Fair

Thoreau, Henry David - Walden
Tolstoy, Leo - War and Peace
Turgenev, Ivan - Fathers and Sons
Twain, Mark - The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Voltaire - Candide
Vonnegut, Kurt Jr. - Slaughterhouse-Five
Walker, Alice - The Color Purple
Wharton, Edith - The House of Mirth
Welty, Eudora - Collected Stories
Whitman, Walt - Leaves of Grass
Wilde, Oscar - The Picture of Dorian Gray
Williams, Tennessee - The Glass Menagerie
Woolf, Virginia - To the Lighthouse
Wright, Richard - Native Son

Found at Marsupial Mom.

Monday, May 10, 2004

I hate change
Blogger changed everything and I don't like it. I want the old classic interface back. Does anyone know how to get that?

Saturday, May 8, 2004

What funny things you learn when gardening in the dark!
Tonight after supper, Mike and I were walking around the front yard looking at the work we did today, noticing how the little plants we put in had perked back up and were looking nice... Little things like that.

Well, there's this forsythia I planted last year that died. I hadn't dug it up yet, because I kept hoping it wasn't really dead, but tonight we decided to go ahead and dig it up before anyone gets hurt by running into it, so I went and got the shovel. I stuck it into the dirt, then levered the handle down. Mike grabbed the top of the plant and pulled it up, and as the poor dead thing came out of the ground, a half a dozen little lights in the dirt glowed brightly for an instant and then began to fade.

"What is that?" I said.

Mike promptly scooped one little light up in hand. Brave man! I wouldn't have picked it up on the shovel for fear it might jump at me!

He carried it to the front door and looked it in the light.

It was an earthworm! A normal, regular little earthworm! I never knew they did that, but then, I don't think I've ever seen an earthworm after dark.

Thursday, May 6, 2004

Another young blogger!
At Samantha's blog tonight I learned that Moppet 1 now has a blog. Like her mom, she's quite an artist.

And another blogger!
At Tim Enloe's tonight I learned that forum-friend Nevski has a blog, Novae Militae. Be sure to check out his links - that page is chock full of links to articles on Christian chivalry transforming the culture.

Wednesday, May 5, 2004

So I was looking at my drafts and I have ten things in there I've started and never finished. Story of my life. I'm great at dreaming and planning, but when I start to do it, the details always bog me down. Like the thing about posting pictures of my garden. Mike found my camera a few days ago, so I've taken some representative pics and planned out how to arrange them and what to say about each one, but now I can't find the cable so that I can upload the pics onto my computer!

(N.B. this post was originally composed at 4 this afternoon, then posted as... you guessed, a draft!)

To continue my randomness. Most of the family has gone to the chapel for supper, Bible study, and evening prayers. My 3 year old never took a nap today and I didn't think he would be equal to the entire evening, so we're skipping the supper and Bible study and going for prayers.

The Wednesday night Bible study was started by the LCMS chaplain, so we always use the Lutheran Hymnal for evening prayers, and I can't tell you how much I love Lutheran worship services. Most of the Evening Prayer service is sung, including the opening prayer (congregational response is in bold):
Jesus Christ is the Light of the world,
the light no darkness can overcome.
Stay with us, Lord, for it is evening,
and the day is almost over.
Let your light scatter the darkness
and illumine your Church.

Sometimes we use the Compline service instead. This is the last prayer in that service, which is also sung:
Guide us waking, O Lord,
and guard us sleeping
that awake we may watch with Christ
and asleep we may rest in peace.
This melody of this prayer is particularly beautiful, drifting downward at the end.

Well, it's time to go to prayers now, so TTFN!

Well, Lutheran liturgy is beautiful, but the theology is downright schizophrenic. I arrived early enough to hear the last 15 minutes or so of the lesson. We're studying through the Augsberg Confession and tonight we covered Articles VII and VIII, the Invisible and Visible Church, respectively.

Maybe it's not the theology that's the problem - the Augsberg Confession seems sound - but it's the way it gets put into practice that I find so confusing. Without going into any details, let me just say that I would no more attend a joint worship service with Jews and Muslims than I would with worshippers of Molech and Ashteroth, but I am more than glad to receive Holy Communion with Christians of other denominations.

I guess this wouldn't bother me so much, except that, being without a faithful Reformed church to join here, we had hoped that the LCMS would work out, and it's not - because of the communion issue. And I do so love their worship services!

Saturday, May 1, 2004

Lord, thou hast searched me, and dost know
Where'er I rest, where'er I go;
Thou knowest all that I have planned,
And all my ways are in thy hand.

My words from thee I cannot hide;
I feel thy power on every side;
O wondrous knowledge, awful might,
Unfathomed depth, unmeasured height!

Where can I go apart from thee,
Or whither from thy presence flee?
In heaven? It is thy dwelling fair;
In death's abode? Lo, thou art there.

If I the wings of morning take,
And far away my dwelling make,
The hand that leadeth me is thine,
And my support thy power divine.

If deepest darkness cover me,
The darkness hideth not from thee;
To thee both night and day are bright,
The darkness shineth as the light.

Words: paraphrase of Psalm 139, author unknown
Music: “Puer Nobis Nascitur,” Michael Praetorius, 1609