Sunday, April 14, 2013

Seen and Pondered Sunday

My how time flies by. I've been seeing and pondering a lot, but neglecting to stop by here and share. I've stepped up the pace and taken two classes each term, winter and spring, and been surprised by how much more time that has taken up. The winter term was pretty rocky, but I was exposed to a lot of thought provoking material in an International Women's class and an anthropology class on natural resources and sustainable community. I'm now starting week 3 of an anthropology class on China and a class entitled International Women's Voices. So many smart people out there thinking good things, and challenging themselves to make the world a better place.

Here's some things that have caught my eye that I'd recommend:

1) China and the coffee industry at the Beijing Review. Who knew?

2) In an earlier post I mentioned my new-found, years behind all the hip people, love of TED talks. Here's one of my newest favorites, "The Danger of a Single Story", by author Chimamanda Adichie. You should also read her fiction. I've read her novel Purple Hibiscus and the short story collection The Thing Around Your Neck, and can't wait to read the rest of her work.

3) Pardis Sabeti. A rock star by night, scientist by day. Now there's a female role model for you.

4) Empowering women to battle hunger.

5) From the BBC, "The Changing State of US Ethnicity" I'm a sucker for a little graphic moving boat.

6) Finally, many of you saw this when I posted it on Facebook, courtesy of my friend Helen Weicker. "Worry About Yourself" It may be our new family mantra. We've learned it's applicable in sibling disagreements, when someone might be complaining about their teammate's behavior during a sporting event, and when multiple backseat drivers are unable to help themselves in proffering driving advice. Watch it and live it!

And a random photo from a recent trip to the Dallas Farmers Market.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Holy Thursday

"The sacrificial instinct is the deep recognition that something always has to die for something bigger to be born....It is always our beloved passing self that has to be let go of....This is an honest day of very good ritual that gathers all the absolutely essential but often avoided messages - necessary suffering, real sharing, divine intimacy, and loving servanthood."

-Richard Rohr
Wondrous Encounters: Scripture for Lent

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Seen and Pondered Sunday

The last two weeks, getting back to the boys' schooling, my schooling, and my job, have been super busy.  But in the midst of all the hubbub, I've found a few things to ponder.

1)  I'm still blindsided by aching for my mama sometimes, even though months have passed.  I had a mini-meltdown the other day when I went to a training, on time and everything, but a week early:) When I arrived home in completely irrational tears, undone by my mistake, I punctuated my tantrum with "and I miss my mom!"  And Lyman, being his completely wonderful and understanding self, said "Of course you do.  She's who would call right now.":  He was so right.  And so I was gently soothed reading these two posts this week, one about a mother lost, and one from someone embracing her mother through the aging process:
"Losing A Mom Soon After Becoming One" and
"Tea, Cribbage, Popcorn and My Beautiful Mother"

2) I'm currently taking a women's studies course on international women.  Readings for it have aroused my interest in this book, The Enemy: What Every American Should Know About Imperialism and this documentary, Half the Sky.

3) On a lighter note, I made this pie today for our 3rd Annual Pie Auction and Social at St. James, in support of the Peace through Pie movement, and indulged in my friend Linda's amazing Lemon Sponge pie, choosing not to track the calories on SparkPeople.

4) Finally, I found this photo from The Sartorialist beautiful and inspiring:  Such grace.

Have a wonderful week!  Look and ponder.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Word of the Year

Although I was at first daunted, I've decided I like the idea of picking a word for the year - SHINE, MOVEMENT, COURAGE.  These are all words, and I'm inspired by the choices.

I've chosen EMBRACE as my word for 2013.

From the online MacMillan Dictionary:


 - definition 

Related dictionary definitions

  1. 1
    [TRANSITIVE] to completely accept something such as a new beliefideaor way of life
  2. 2
    [INTRANSITIVE/TRANSITIVE] to put your arms around someone in order to show love or friendship

From Merriam-Webster online:


 verb \im-ˈbrās\

Definition of EMBRACE

transitive verb
a : to clasp in the arms : hug
b : cherishlove
a : to take up especially readily or gladly <embrace a cause>
b : to avail oneself of : welcome <embraced the opportunity to study further>
a : to take in or include as a part, item, or element of a more inclusive whole 

I mulled over many possibilities on my walk yesterday.  Last year was good, and it was hard.  This year I'll continue to take classes working toward my degree, I'll continue to homeschool my two boys at home, I'll try to be a better wife and create a haven in our home, I'll continue to explore and learn from my ESL students I want to stay mindful of my health and accomplish some fitness goals, and I want to develop spiritually and soak up the community at our church.   And at the end of this summer, our family plans on embarking on a year-long adventure traveling across the U.S.  I want to cherish and accept all these things, to "take up gladly."  I'm ready to EMBRACE it all.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

on the arrival of 2013

Especially after spending several days with my father's side of the family in Georgia and North Carolina, we had to bring in the New Year with Hoppin' John and the basic cornbread recipe from Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone.  After grabbing some exercise at the YMCA and a small afternoon date at the Galaxy Cafe, we had a quiet night at home.  The bigger boys enjoyed watching basketball and car shows on TV.  The youngest became totally engrossed in one of his books he got for Christmas, The Mark of Athena.  And I indulged in a little House Hunters watching, and reading, falling asleep way before the ball dropped.  (No surprise at all to Lyman.)

Starting the morning and 2013 in a quiet house while everyone else sleeps.  Setting the intention to care for myself this year with time with family and friends, adventure, good healthful food, good work, and light, in all its wondrous forms.  It has been quite the year, and this coming one holds much promise.  Blessings in 2013.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Prayers tonight

"Our Christian wisdom is to name the darkness as darkness, and the Light as light, and to learn how to live and work in the Light so that the darkness does not overcome us."

Fr. Richard Rohr
Preparing for Christmas: Daily Meditations for Advent

The darkness has seemed oh so powerful today.  Sending up prayers for the families in Connecticut tonight.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Sweet Happenings

The boys had their now annual cookie exchange with their book group this week.  We've been a part of a homeschool group that gathers monthly to discuss books for a couple of years now.  Unfortunately, our participation varies with the season and sports commitments.  But it has been a great experience for both boys, and has nudged them toward books that they might have been reluctant to read if they weren't going to get to discuss them with their friends.

 And in addition to reading and discussing books, they have a fun event once a month.  This month - holiday cookie exchange!  I didn't get to go, but did get to help (read I made) cookies for them to take and we all pitched in on decorating.  (I might have quoted the The Little Red Hen story when someone was less than eager to help at one point...)  Not masterpieces, our cookies, but homemade.  And we're still enjoying the cookies they brought home.