Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Contemplating the Year

Looking back, I see that I've made some changes this year. On the home front, I have all boxes of books out of the living areas, for instance. I've helped the girls get their rooms in order. I've had the bedroom painted. I've organized my closet. There is much work yet to do in the house -- I'm thinking about just getting rid of ALL the books in the garage. This would be a big, big step for me. I have this emotional attachment to my books -- and I can't think about just dumping them. I would like some money; that would make me feel better. But getting rid of the Estate stuff out of the garage and the books (and maybe the yard equipment) would allow us to put some exercise equipment and matting down in the garage -- and build a baby dojang. The kids want a big TV in the corner and a stereo system, too. Sounds good to me -- but for this to happen, the books have to go.

This year, we also have two baby kitties -- one not so baby anymore and one still quite young. They have brought much joy to us this year. I have fallen in love with them; with Critter, especially. I don't know how we did without them.

This year, we have two new churches -- and what a blessing they have been. I miss the old people to some extent, but I have loved the opportunity to serve. I don't know how we did without these churches!

Next year, I want to finish up with the Big Purge in this house. I want to finish getting my house in order -- to finish with the estates and to organize what needs to be organized (that would be the sewing room, the garage and the basement.) I want to work on my weight -- both in a direct way and an indirect way -- I want to live a healthier lifestyle. I want to learn to really play the Theremin. To do this, of course, means that I have to FINISH the Theremin.

This push to get rid of stuff, to get into better shape, to improve my mind is essentially a spiritual journey -- in its essence, all three are the same journey. As it says in "The Thunder Perfect Mind" from the Nag Hammadi:
For what is inside of you is what is outside of you,
and the one who fashions you on the outside
is the one who shaped the inside of you.
And what you see outside of you, you see inside of you;
it is visible and it is your garment.

The central thesis for my "Theology of Space" is indeed this -- Unless the exterior life reflects the interior and the interior live reflects the exterior, you live in a cognitive dissonance; you are living in conflict. I have absolutely no problem spending an hour or two a day in contemplation and prayer, attending to my interior life. However, I don't spend that time working on the total exterior life; my physical shape, my grooming habits, my living spaces and my creative nature. So that will be my goal this year -- either to become a complete intellectual, spiritual and emotional slob or to get my exterior life in line with my interior.

Note: (OK, I'm not a complete slob - but more slobby that I would like...)

Monday, December 29, 2008

This is Me Today

funny pictures of cats with captions
more animals

I'm having a hard time getting going the last couple of days. Post-Christmas slump and the beginnings of a cold. But I'm up ... and going. Barely.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Poem -- John Donne, Nativity


Immensity, cloister'd in thy dear womb,
Now leaves His well-beloved imprisonment.
There he hath made himself to his intent
Weak enough, now into our world to come.
But O ! for thee, for Him, hath th' inn no room ?
Yet lay Him in this stall, and from th' orient,
Stars, and wise men will travel to prevent
The effects of Herod's jealous general doom.
See'st thou, my soul, with thy faith's eye, how He
Which fills all place, yet none holds Him, doth lie ?
Was not His pity towards thee wondrous high,
That would have need to be pitied by thee ?
Kiss Him, and with Him into Egypt go,
With His kind mother, who partakes thy woe.

Chaos Wants This Wedding Cake

Of course, Chaos is not yet 15, she is not engaged, nor is she looking to be engaged any time soon, but she KNOWS she wants this cake.

This cake was found on the internet (don't remember where) but was baked by "Let Them Eat Cake" and another picture of it is in the gallery "Wedding Cakes" on a red background. They have some truly gorgeous cakes. I am fascinated by the idea of fondant icing and the things you can do with it. There is a lady in one of my churches who is learning to work with it and I think that the design opportunities are limitless.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Mai Happi Xmas Face

funny pictures
more cat pictures

Dietrich Bonhoeffer, Christmas in Prison

Christmas, 1943
God, to you I call early in the morning.
Help me pray
And gather my thoughts to yourself
I cannot do it alone.
In me it is dark,
But with you is the light;
I am lonely, but you forsake me not;
I am faint-hearted, but with you is help;
I am restless, but with you is peace;
In me is bitterness, but with you is patience;
I do not understand my way, but
You know the way for me.

Father in Heaven,
Praise and thanks
Be yours for the night’s rest.
Praise and thanks be your for the new day.
Praise and thanks be yours for all your kindness
And faithfulness in my past life.
You have shown me much good,
Let me now receive from your hand
What is hard.
You will not lay upon me
More than I can bear.
For your children you let all things
Serve for the best.

Lord Jesus Christ,
You were poor
And miserable, captive and forsaken as I am.
You know every need of humans,
You remain with me
When no man stands by me,
You forget me not and seek me,
You will that I recognize you
And turn to you.
Lord, I hear your call and follow,
Help me!

Holy Spirit,
Give me the faith that rescues me from
Despair, addictions, and vice,
Give me the love for God and humans,
That destroys all hate and bitterness,
Give me the hope that frees me from
Fear and despondency.

Holy, merciful God,
My Creator and my Savior,
My Judge and my Deliverer,
You know me and everything I do.
You hate and punish evil in this world
And in the next with no respect of persons;
You forgive sins for the one
Who asks sincerely;
You love good and reward it on this
Earth with a good conscience
And in the world to come
With the crown of righteousness.

Before you I think of all my loved ones,
And of my fellow prisoners, and of all those
Who do their hard service in this house.
Lord, have mercy!
Grant me freedom again,
And let me so live in the present
That I can live responsibly
Before humans.
Lord, whatever else this day brings—
May your name be praised!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Santa Kitteh!!1!

funny pictures
more cat pictures

Bonhoeffer, From Prison on Christmas Eve

O Heavenly Father,
I praise and thank you
For the peace of the night;
I praise and thank you for this new day;
I praise and thank you for all your goodness and
faithfulness throughout my life.
You have granted me many blessings;
Now let me also accept what is hard
from your hand.
You will lay on me no more
than I can bear.
You make all things work together for good
for your children ....

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Kitteh Nativity

funny pictures
more cat pictures

This week is the candle of Love

Speak tenderly to them.
Let there be kindness in your face,
in your eyes, in your smile,
in the warmth of your greeting.
Always have a cheerful smile.
Don't only give your care,
but give your heart as well.

-- Mother Teresa of Calcutta

Friday, December 19, 2008

Grinch Kitteh

funny pictures
more cat pictures

Friday Five: Countdown to Christmas Edition

Songbird at RevGals writes:
It's true.

There are only five full days before Christmas Day, and whether you use them for shopping, wrapping, preaching, worshiping, singing or traveling or even wishing the whole darn thing were over last Tuesday, there's a good chance they will be busy ones.

So let's make this easy, if we can: tell us five things you need to accomplish before Christmas Eve.

1. cleaning the house (this is MAJOR cleaning that involves completely rearranging entire rooms of furniture from one room to another -- usually on a different floor.) Why did I do this now? because...

2. I am preparing for my day after Christmas Party in which I have sent over 100 invitations and have hired professional musicians.

3. purchase food and cook for Christmas Day and The Party.

4. mail my Amazon packages.

5. oh,yeah -- and finish all those bulletins and sermons and stuff.

Oops... 6. Decorate for Christmas.

We now have a tree with lights and icicle lights on the front porch. Decorating may be minimal this year.

So : musings and morning prayer

I am going to have something appear in the UM Reporter. But it won't be me, but my kitchy Last Supper Lunchbox Communion Kit. A means of grace in a very mundane container -- but isn't that all the means of grace?

At your feet, O Christ, we lay
your own gift of this new day;
Doubt of what it holds in store
Makes us crave your aid the more;
Even in a time of loss,
Mark, it Savior, with your Cross.

Yes, we would your Word embrace,
Live each moment on your grace,
All ourselves to you consign,
Fold up all our wills in yours,
Think, and speak, and do, and be
Simply that which pleases you.
William Bright

1 I love you, O LORD my strength, *
O LORD my stronghold, my crag, and my haven.
2 My God, my rock in whom I put my trust, *
my shield, the horn of my salvation, and my refuge;
you are worthy of praise.
3 I will call upon the LORD, *
and so shall I be saved from my enemies.
-- Psalm 18

Luke 24:36-43

36And as they thus spake, Jesus himself stood in the midst of them, and saith unto them, Peace be unto you. 37But they were terrified and affrighted, and supposed that they had seen a spirit. 38And he said unto them, Why are ye troubled? and why do thoughts arise in your hearts? 39Behold my hands and my feet, that it is I myself: handle me, and see; for a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have. 40And when he had thus spoken, he shewed them his hands and his feet. 41And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? 42And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. 43And he took it, and did eat before them.

Sometimes Communion feels so much like Last Supper
That I want to celebrate First Breakfast with you -- eating fish and honeycomb.
Let me not dwell on things past,
But on thing here and now and
Hope with expectant heart for those things to come.
I pray in your Son's Holy Name,

(note: my husband and I often joke about start a new church called "The Church of the First Breakfast" and eat together broiled fish and honeycomb.)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Oddity of the Day -- Crematorium Heat to be Used to Heat Crematorium

in Halmstead. Story here. The plan is that one day the heat will be used to heat the whole town. I suppose it' a good thing that the energy won't go to waste -- very green idea. Solyent Green, that is.
funny pictures
more cat pictures

bah humbug

I'm in a bah humbug frame of mind. I JUST purchased our tree for way too much money. We've never had an artificial tree; we usually cut our own tree the weekend after Thanksgiving, but we had sick kids. Somehow, we just never got around to it.

Then it occurred to me that this tree will be shredded into mulch in about a week and a half. And then I thought that maybe I should just give the recycling man dollar bills to shred and cut out all the fuss and bother.

Bah. Humbug.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Wreath Kitteh

funny pictures
more cat pictures

Running so very far behind

I am running so very far behind. I don't have a tree yet. The lights aren't up. No food has been purchased. I'm still cleaning house.

The girls and I watched "Girl TV" yesterday -- specifically, Chaos' third birthday party. The kids were amazed at how little they were -- I was amazed at how clean the house was. How on earth did this house get so very ... messy? We have indeed inherited a couple of households of stuff -- but REALLY! My year (or year and a half) of stuff reduction has helped, but the process isn't over yet. The girls' rooms will look amazing by the end of the month (JC Penney is still shipping various things) and my room will be almost complete, but the sewing room is HORRIBLE. The living areas are a total wreck right now.

I am about a month behind of where I wanted to be, so here's some pics from Thanksgiving:

I call these "Inept Southerners Trying To Have A Snowball Fight"

This is Aunt Susie's cat -- isn't she beautiful?

This is Aunt Susie's bunny -- I call this one "I can haz bunni plse?"

This is a log cabin in Fairmont, WV. I like the buttercream colored chinking. It has been continually occupied for more than 200 years. For my cabin, I think I would prefer less chinking.

Small, Medium and Large. I have small under my chin right now. She's a real love-muffin.

My card/invitations came this morning. All addressed, now I need stamps. Very last minute, eh?

Advent Hymn #16: O What Shall I do My Savior to Praise

O what shall I do my Savior to praise,
So faithful and true, so plenteous in grace,
So strong to deliver, So good to redeem
The weakest believer that hangs upon Him!
How happy the man whose heart is set free,
The people that can be joyful in thee!
Their joy is to walk in the light of thy face,
And still they are talking of Jesus’ grace.

Their daily delight shall be in Thy Name;
They shall as their right Thy righteousness claim;
Thy righteousness wearing, and cleansed by Thy blood,
Bold shall they appear in the presence of God.

For Thou art their Boast, their Glory and Power;
And I also trust to see the glad hour,
My soul’s new creation, a life from the dead,
The day of salvation, that lifts up my head.

For Jesus, my Lord, is now my Defense;
I trust in His Word, none plucks me from thence;
Since I have found favor, He all things will do;
My King and my Savior shall make me anew.

Yes, Lord, I shall see the bliss of Thine own,
Thy secret to me shall soon be made known;
For sorrow and sadness I joy shall receive,
And share in the gladness of all that believe.

Monday, December 15, 2008

Imposter Ornament

funny pictures
more animals


In the spirit of Stuff Reduction, I've been FreeCycling. FreeCycle is a email list where you post things you don't want anymore and people come and take it away. It's better than throwing it in the landfill and easier than Goodwill.

This week I have FreeCycled:
  • 12 bags of books, clothing and toys from Entropy's room
  • 3 bags of shoes, clothing and assorted stuff from Chaos's room
  • an Entertainment Center I've had for 22 years
  • 2 guitars
  • 3 boxes of Knick Knacks
  • 2 boxes of half-burned candles
Additional I've loaned a friend of a friend a Glider Rocker.

I've been getting new curtains and comforter sets for the girls' rooms and I am having them painted.

Now to get another bag of stuff up to give away --

edited: I've given away this morning an over the door shoe rack, a green makeup case that looks like a tackle box and an old copier. I'm going to scrounge up more stuff... this is actually kind of fun!

Advent Hymn #15: The God Whom Earth and Sea and Sky

The God Whom earth, and sea, and sky,
Adore, and laud, and magnify,
Who o’er their threefold fabric reigns,
The virgin’s spotless womb contains.
The God Whose will by moon and sun
And all things in due course is done,
Is borne upon a maiden’s breast,
By fullest heavenly grace possest.

How blest the mother, in whose shrine
The great Artificer Divine,
Whose hand contains the earth and sky,
Vouchsafed, as in His ark, to lie!

Blest, in the message Gabriel brought;
Blest, by the work the Spirit wrought:
From whom the Great Desire of earth
Took human flesh and human birth.

All honor, laud, and glory be,
O Jesu, virgin-born, to Thee!
All glory, as is ever meet,
To Father and to Paraclete.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Advent Hymn #14: Lo How A Rose 'Ere Blooming

Lo, how a Rose e’er blooming from tender stem hath sprung!
Of Jesse’s lineage coming, as those of old have sung.
It came, a floweret bright, amid the cold of winter,
When half spent was the night.

Isaiah ’twas foretold it, the Rose I have in mind;
With Mary we behold it, the virgin mother kind.
To show God’s love aright, she bore to us a Savior,
When half spent was the night.

The shepherds heard the story proclaimed by angels bright,
How Christ, the Lord of glory was born on earth this night.
To Bethlehem they sped and in the manger they found Him,
As angel heralds said.

This Flower, whose fragrance tender with sweetness fills the air,
Dispels with glorious splendor the darkness everywhere;
True Man, yet very God, from sin and death He saves us,
And lightens every load.

O Savior, Child of Mary, Who felt our human woe,
O Savior, King of glory, Who dost our weakness know;
Bring us at length we pray, to the bright courts of heaven,
And to the endless day!

Saturday, December 13, 2008

2nd Degree Black Belts

I should post my Advent Hymns, but I post this instead. Chaos and Entropy tested today for 2nd Degree Black Belts in Tang Soo Do Mu Duk Kwan (and we are pretty sure they passed..)

Entropy breaking boards. What you don't see here is that each are holding TWO boards -- they are doubled.

Chaos doing some awesome kicking break. Her boards are thicker and doubled. She sent the third set of boards spinning off into the studio, as they didn't just break, they splintered into pieces.

Master Long, Grandmaster Kwan, Black Belts, including those who just got their first belt. Only three were testing for 2nd degree and only 5 in the picture are 3 degree or higher. I don't know the statistics, but I know that many kids start this, but few obtain a black belt. Of those who obtain a black belt, only a few go on and get a first or second degree. Chaos is only a handful in her school who train and who have a black belt; she may be the only 2nd degree in her school of 3500. I am proud of them!

Advent Hymn #13: Lo He Comes With Clouds Descending

Lo! He comes with clouds descending,
Once for favored sinners slain;
Thousand thousand saints attending,
Swell the triumph of His train:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
God appears on earth to reign.

Every eye shall now behold Him
Robed in dreadful majesty;
Those who set at naught and sold Him,
Pierced and nailed Him to the tree,
Deeply wailing, deeply wailing,
Shall the true Messiah see.

Every island, sea, and mountain,
Heav’n and earth, shall flee away;
All who hate Him must, confounded,
Hear the trump proclaim the day:
Come to judgment! Come to judgment!
Come to judgment! Come away!

Now redemption, long expected,
See in solemn pomp appear;
All His saints, by man rejected,
Now shall meet Him in the air:
Hallelujah! Hallelujah!
See the day of God appear!

Answer Thine own bride and Spirit,
Hasten, Lord, the general doom!
The new Heav’n and earth t’inherit,
Take Thy pining exiles home:
All creation, all creation,
Travails! groans! and bids Thee come!

The dear tokens of His passion
Still His dazzling body bears;
Cause of endless exultation
To His ransomed worshippers;
With what rapture, with what rapture
Gaze we on those glorious scars!

Yea, Amen! let all adore Thee,
High on Thine eternal throne;
Savior, take the power and glory,
Claim the kingdom for Thine own;
O come quickly! O come quickly!
Everlasting God, come down!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Advent Hymn #12: Come Ye Children of the Lord

Come, ye children of the Lord,
Let us sing with one accord,
Let us raise a joyful strain
To our Lord, Who soon will reign
On this earth, when it shall be
Cleansed from all iniquity;
When all men from sin will cease,
And will live in love and peace.

O, how joyful it will be
When our Savior we shall see!
When in splendor He’ll descend,
Then all wickedness shall end.
O what songs we then will sing
To our Savior, Lord and King!
O what love will then bear sway,
When our fears shall flee away!

All arrayed in spotless white,
We will dwell ’mid truth and light.
We will sing the songs of praise;
We will shout in joyous lays.
Earth shall then be cleansed from sin.
Every living thing therein
Shall in love and beauty dwell;
Then with joy each heart will swell.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Link Love -- Oogy the Dog -- I cried.

I received this link in email this afternoon. This is a truly inspirational story. First, the fact that as their beloved cat Buzzy lay dying, they found love again in a very ugly and needy dog -- that is grace.

And the final line --
'I realized then that Oogy probably did not know he had not died and gone to heaven. So I told him. I said, "Listen pal. It only gets better after this."'

What a word of encouragement -- how that speaks of what I believe of the Kingdom. It is already and not yet. May we bring about the Kingdom just a little more this Christmas.

Sick and at Home

watching numb3rs on Netflix.

I could get some hot chocolate, too. But I think we would all still feel bad.

Edited: I am fascinated with this program, even though sometimes the Math seems, well, contrived. I am just a fascinated with the Eppes' house. It is a stunning example of Arts and Crafts design. Here are a few examples.

The Exterior

The Inglenook

A quick internet search reveals it as the West Adams house -- there is even a LA Times article about it. Gorgeous. Stunning.


I have been sick this week. The LH has been sick for a long time -- maybe 5 weeks? Entropy was next -- she's been under the weather since just before Thanksgiving with strep throat. Chaos may have mono -- the doctor is 90 percent sure, just waiting for the blood test.

This makes me refocus. I have had a bunch of things on my "to do list." Some of them have been there for quite a while. I've gotten a lot of them done ... but when things happen, when people get sick -- it causes me to refocus. Why am I doing this or that? What is the purpose? What is really important?

There are two time in the year that make me refocus -- Advent and Lent. They used to be both penitential seasons; times to reflect on sins of omission and sins of commission. Now Advent seems more of a refocusing time, where it's not as much a time to reflect on me and my stuff -- but a time to reflect on how I might make room for the Baby. How can I make space for the incarnation? This is internal, liminal and external -- within myself, within my relationships with others and in the world.

I have been on a journey this last year or so of Purging. The great purge is continuing -- we hit Entropy's room this week and gave away 12 or so large black garbage bags of clothing, toys, stuffed animals and books. Why should we hoard it when others could use it? The person who received the bags was appreciative -- she's taking care of a crop of foster kids and all of it will be used one way or another. This feels good. I gave another bag of clothing to my sister who will use them. This feels good, too. I have given away two guitars, 5o+ movies on VHS, books, more books, knick-knacks and some of my clothing. I am feeling lighter. I am basking in the light.

I am still moving through Purgation; I am resting a while in the Illumination; perhaps Union will be next -- I thought of them as individual stages for so long. Perhaps they exists simultaniously. Perhaps I shouldn't wait for complete Purgation before I can find Illumination.

The true light, which enlightens everyone, is coming into the world. (John 1:9) Let us make room in our hearts for the Baby.

edited: She definitely has mono. So she's home until after Christmas. At least she can get some rest and study for all those finals she's missing.

Advent Hymn #11: To a Maid Engaged to Joseph

To a maid engaged to Joseph, the angel Gabriel came.
“Fear not,” the angel told her, “I come to bring good news,
Good news I come to tell you, good news, I say, good news.

“For you are highly favored by the God the Lord of all,
Who even now is with you. You are on earth most blest,
You are most blest, most blessèd, God chose you, you are blest!”

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Advent Hymn #10: Hail to the Lord's anionted

Hail to the Lord’s anointed, great David’s greater Son!
Hail in the time appointed, His reign on earth begun!
He comes to break oppression, to set the captive free;
To take away transgression and rule in equity.

He comes in succor speedy to those who suffer wrong;
To help the poor and needy, and bid the weak be strong;
To give them songs for sighing, their darkness turn to light,
Whose souls, condemned and dying, were precious in His sight.

By such shall He be fearèd while sun and moon endure;
Beloved, obeyed, reverèd; for He shall judge the poor
Through changing generations, with justice, mercy, truth,
While stars maintain their stations, or moons renew their youth.

He shall come down like showers upon the fruitful earth;
Love, joy, and hope, like flowers, spring in His path to birth.
Before Him, on the mountains, shall peace, the herald, go,
And righteousness, in fountains, from hill to valley flow.

Arabia’s desert ranger to Him shall bow the knee;
The Ethiopian stranger His glory come to see;
With offerings of devotion ships from the isles shall meet,
To pour the wealth of oceans in tribute at His feet.

Kings shall fall down before Him, and gold and incense bring;
All nations shall adore Him, His praise all people sing;
For He shall have dominion o’er river, sea and shore,
Far as the eagle’s pinion or dove’s light wing can soar.

For Him shall prayer unceasing and daily vows ascend;
His kingdom still increasing, a kingdom without end:
The mountain dews shall nourish a seed in weakness sown,
Whose fruit shall spread and flourish and shake like Lebanon.

O’er every foe victorious, He on His throne shall rest;
From age to age more glorious, all blessing and all blest.
The tide of time shall never His covenant remove;
His Name shall stand forever, His Name to us is Love.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Advent Hymn # 9: Savior of the Nations Come

Savior of the nations, come;
Virgin's son, here make thy home!
Marvel now, O heaven and earth,
that the Lord chose such a birth.

Not by human flesh and blood;
by the Spirit of our God
was the Word of God made flesh,
woman's offspring, pure and fresh.

Monday, December 08, 2008


Critter got out this morning -- she followed Johnny who (against my wishes) LOVES to go outside. Well, I think she's still too little.

Panic followed -- by both myself and Critterbit. She came to the front door just a few minutes ago, all fluffed up and wanting in desperately. She's now under my chin and won't leave. She's also drooling and rooting around under my ear, looking for something to nurse on. Nothing there, cat, sorry.

Advent Hymn #8: Creator of the Stars at Night

Creator of the stars of night,
Thy people’s everlasting light,
Jesu, Redeemer, save us all,
And hear Thy servants when they call.

Thou, grieving that the ancient curse
Should doom to death a universe,
Hast found the medicine, full of grace,
To save and heal a ruined race.

Thou cam’st, the Bridegroom of the bride,
As drew the world to evening-tide;
Proceeding from a virgin shrine,
The spotless Victim all divine.

At Whose dread Name, majestic now,
All knees must bend, all hearts must bow;
And things celestial Thee shall own,
And things terrestrial, Lord alone.

O Thou Whose coming is with dread
To judge and doom the quick and dead,
Preserve us, while we dwell below,
From every insult of the foe.

To God the Father, God the Son,
And God the Spirit, Three in One,
Laud, honor, might, and glory be
From age to age eternally.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Advent Hymn #7: Come Thou Long Expected Jesus

Come, Thou long expected Jesus
Born to set Thy people free;
From our fears and sins release us,
Let us find our rest in Thee.
Israel’s Strength and Consolation,
Hope of all the earth Thou art;
Dear Desire of every nation,
Joy of every longing heart.

Born Thy people to deliver,
Born a child and yet a King,
Born to reign in us forever,
Now Thy gracious kingdom bring.
By Thine own eternal Spirit
Rule in all our hearts alone;
By Thine all sufficient merit,
Raise us to Thy glorious throne.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Advent Hymn #6: Watchman Tell Us Of The Night

Watchman, tell us of the night,
What its signs of promise are.
Traveler, o’er yon mountain’s height,
See that glory beaming star.
Watchman, does its beauteous ray
Aught of joy or hope foretell?
Traveler, yes—it brings the day,
Promised day of Israel.

Watchman, tell us of the night;
Higher yet that star ascends.
Traveler, blessedness and light,
Peace and truth its course portends.
Watchman, will its beams alone
Gild the spot that gave them birth?
Traveler, ages are its own;
See, it bursts o’er all the earth.

Watchman, tell us of the night,
For the morning seems to dawn.
Traveler, darkness takes its flight,
Doubt and terror are withdrawn.
Watchman, let thy wanderings cease;
Hie thee to thy quiet home.
Traveler, lo! the Prince of Peace,
Lo! the Son of God is come!

Friday, December 05, 2008

Advent Hymn #5: Prepare the Way, O Zion!

Prepare the way, O Zion!
Ye awful deeps, rise high;
Sink low, ye towering mountains,
The Lord is drawing nigh;
The righteous King of glory,
Foretold in sacred story.


O blest is He that came
In God the Father’s Name.

O Zion, He approacheth,
Thy Lord and King for aye!
Strew palms where He advanceth,
Spread garments in His way.
God’s promise faileth never,
Hosanna sound forever!

Fling wide thy portals, Zion
And hail thy glorious King;
His tidings of salvation
To every people bring,
Who, waiting yet in sadness,
Would sing His praise in gladness.


He cometh not with warriors,
And not with pomp and show,
Yet smiteth He with terror
Sin, death, and every foe.
The Spirit’s sword He wieldeth,
Not e’en to death He yieldeth.


Day of the Ninja

Today is Day of the Ninja. But unless you look very carefully, you will never see them. Otherwise, they would be bad ninja.

Found here.
more cat pictures

more cat pictures

Humorous Pictures
more cat pictures

Thank you ASBO Jesus

As found here.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Advent Hymn #4: On Jordan's Bank the Baptist's Cry

On Jordan’s bank the Baptist’s cry
Announces that the Lord is nigh;
Come, then, and hearken, for he brings
Glad tidings from the King of kings!

Then cleansed be every breast from sin;
Make straight the way for God within;
Prepare we in our hearts a home,
Where such a mighty Guest may come.

For Thou art our Salvation, Lord,
Our Refuge, and our great Reward.
Without Thy grace our souls must fade
And wither like a flower decayed.

Stretch forth Thine hand, to heal our sore,
And make us rise and fall no more;
Once more upon Thy people shine,
And fill the world with love divine.

To Him Who left the throne of Heaven
To save mankind, all praise be given;
Like praise be to the Father done,
And Holy Spirit, Three in One.

Wednesday, December 03, 2008


Well, I gave thanks for my healthy children. Too bad they don't stay that way. Entropy is sick again (for the 12th day or so) and getting worse. She's showing some of the signs of scarlet fever or rheumatic fever. All I can say is "not again!"

Edited: Good news! No scarlet fever! She's having a bad reaction to the antibiotics. The cure is almost worse than the disease.

Advent Hymn #3: Herald in the Wilderness

Herald, in the wilderness,
Breaking up the road,
Sinking mountains, raising plains,
For the path of God;

Prophet, to the multitudes
Calling to repent,
In the way of righteousness
Unto Israel sent;

Messenger, God’s chosen one
Foremost to proclaim,
Proffered titles passing by,
Pointing to the Lamb.

Captive, for the word of truth
Boldly witnessing;
Then in Herod’s dungeon cave,
Faint and languishing;

Martyr, sacrificed to sin
At that feast of shame;
As his life foreshowed the Lord,
In his death the same—

Holy Jesus, when He heard,
Went apart to pray:
Thus may we our lesson take
From his saint today.

Grateful for #32:

(OK, so it's hard to stop...)
I am grateful that my husband was not one of the 350 people that I know of who were laid off yesterday. I am grateful for my employment and my husband's employment.

And my heart hurts for those who do not have employment. My prayers are with them today.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Advent Hymn #2: Arise, Sons of the Kingdom

Arise, sons of the kingdom!
The King is drawing nigh;
Arise, and hail with gladness
The Ruler from on high.
Ye Christians, hasten forth!
Your praise and homage bring Him
And glad hosannas sing Him,
Naught else your love is worth.

Arise, ye poor and needy!
The King provides for you;
He comes with succor speedy,
With mercy ever new.
He Who a beast did heed
Lets not His children perish;
All hopes that man may cherish
He can fulfill indeed.

Arise, ye faint and fearful!
The King now comes with might,
His heart hath long since loved us,
He makes our darkness light.
Now are our sorrows o’er;
No wrath shall e’er befall us,
Since God in grace doth call us
His children evermore.

Haste then, with eager footsteps,
To see your Sovereign there!
He rides as King of Zion,
Strong, glorious, meek and fair.
Draw near the Lord and give
To Him your salutation,
Who bringeth great salvation,
And bids the sinner live.

The King in grace remembers
His loved ones here below
With gifts of royal treasures,
Yea, doth Himself bestow
Through His blest Word and grace.
O King, arrayed in splendor,
To Thee all praise we’ll render
Here and there face to face.

O rich the gifts Thou bring’st us,
Thyself made poor and weak;
O Love beyond expression
That thus can sinners seek!
For this, O Lord, will we
Our joyous tribute bring Thee,
And glad hosannas sing Thee,
And ever grateful be.

Note: I am aware that the lyrics are not particularly gender inclusive. I present this just for your edification and suggest that if necessary, you might change them for your use.

Monday, December 01, 2008

Grateful for #31:

Netflix has their Mac player in Beta!

Pictures I Should Maybe Not Post

Critter is an exceptionally well behaved kitteh. She loves the car. Most of the time she spent either on my shoulder or under my chin or in her bed that we placed on the center console. Not yowling, no scratching, biting or shredding of anything or anyone. No accidents. She loved to look out the windows and watched intently the windshield wipers. A couple of times she ended up under my chin while I was driving -- and went to sleep. (Slow driving with little or no traffic, I will add.) The LH couldn't resist taking a picture.

Advent Hymn #1: O come, O come Emmanuel!

Advent started on Sunday. I've been thinking about hymns. We typically sing Christmas Carols for the Advent season because there are only a handful of Advent hymns in our hymnals. Advent just isn't celebrated the way it used to be. For instance, we now use blue instead of purple because we do not view this season as one of reflection and repentance.

So starting now I am going to blog one Advent hymn a day, with music (if possible) ending with Christmas Eve.

Have a Blessed Advent. O come, Emmanuel!

O come, O come, Emmanuel,
And ransom captive Israel,
That mourns in lonely exile here
Until the Son of God appear.


Rejoice! Rejoice!
Emmanuel shall come to thee, O Israel.

O come, Thou Wisdom from on high,
Who orderest all things mightily;
To us the path of knowledge show,
And teach us in her ways to go.


O come, Thou Rod of Jesse, free
Thine own from Satan’s tyranny;
From depths of hell Thy people save,
And give them victory over the grave.


O come, Thou Day-spring, come and cheer
Our spirits by Thine advent here;
Disperse the gloomy clouds of night,
And death’s dark shadows put to flight.


O come, Thou Key of David, come,
And open wide our heavenly home;
Make safe the way that leads on high,
And close the path to misery.


O come, O come, great Lord of might,
Who to Thy tribes on Sinai’s height
In ancient times once gave the law
In cloud and majesty and awe.


O come, Thou Root of Jesse’s tree,
An ensign of Thy people be;
Before Thee rulers silent fall;
All peoples on Thy mercy call.


O come, Desire of nations, bind
In one the hearts of all mankind;
Bid Thou our sad divisions cease,
And be Thyself our King of Peace.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Grateful for #30

The best for last??

My beautiful, talented, smart, entertaining, adorable, charming and healthy children. I give thanks to God daily for them.

November is a Month of being Grateful

I am going to post something everyday that I am grateful for. Will you join me?

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Grateful for #29:

My sisters -- those to whom I am related and those who are sisters of the heart.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Grateful for #28:

Breaks from the routine.

Pictures of our Days

What it looked like almost all the way to WVa. Srly.

Our new Expedition comes with a passenger side kitty ear warmer. Isn't it cute.

Athena Crittenden Coleman, better known as Critter, enjoying her Thanksgiving.