7 Quick Takes: Insane School Stuff Edition

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Parkland, Florida school shooting. The school shooting yesterday was #18 this year.

18.

That’s roughly one every other day.

So tell me how we don’t need appropriate gun control. (Not banning firearms. GUN CONTROL..) I effing dare you.

— 2 —

Lent. My Lenten discipline was going to be Morning Prayer every day, but it will end up being one of the Daily Offices daily because it’s been that kind of week. I think I cumulatively spent 20 hours on my Payroll Project #1 between last Saturday night and Monday when I figured out how things had gotten so screwed up. (My instructor calculated everything one way and then gave us instructions to do the opposite. Then on Monday, she was sick so she didn’t have office hours… and we had to take a quiz on the bloody thing that night. Let’s just say that my spreadsheet and email telling her that she was wrong got forwarded around almost the entire class and I had to talk a couple people off the figurative ledge.) The Payroll issue meant that my Excel final got put on the back burner because it wasn’t due until Tuesday night, and I had one thing on it that kept stymying me so much that I had to just forfeit that point and submit it. (It turns out that I was doing it right, but misinterpreted something. My instructor laughed at me when I told her about it because it was 1 flipping point out of a possible 110.) Excel being turned in on Tuesday meant that Access didn’t get started until yesterday and submitted tonight 3 hours ahead of the deadline. (I try to be at least 24 hours ahead in case something happens.)

So yeah… one of the Daily Offices every day. Yesterday, it was Compline and it will probably be Compline again tonight because I have some legal paperwork to do as well. Ay-yi-yi!

At least my Payroll Project #2 balanced last night!

— 3 —

Ash Wednesday. Because we share facilities and our priest with the Spanish-speaking congregation, the two congregations worship together on occasions like Ash Wednesday. We had bilingual Ash Wednesday worship last night and it was heavenly. The bulletin was English on the left and Spanish on the right, with Helen (our priest) switching off languages between paragraphs or readings or parts of the liturgy. My ashes got imposed with Spanish words while others had English spoken over them, and Helen preached in both languages. (I understood surprisingly much of the Spanish.)

— 4 —

Pretty choir music take #1. We’re doing this in a few weeks and the alto part is awesome.

— 5 —

Pretty choir music take #2 We get to sing this again for Palm Sunday, and it is stuck in everyone’s head.

— 6 —

Pretty choir music take #3

— 7 —

My current ear worm. Because you need it in your ear too!

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

7 Quick Takes: Sticks with Spinning Plates Edition

7 Quick Takes

I told one of my instructors that I feel like I’m en pointe on one foot while holding sticks on which plates are spinning… and I’m trying to keep them from crashing. She laughed. Somehow, I’ve made it through my week.

— 1 —

Lenten devotional update. I’ve got the sucker compiled and edited. My priest suggested helpfully that we make this a “print your own devotional” deal because it would have cost far more to print a copy for everyone than we have in our budget at the moment. (Those who do not have Internet access will get a printed copy, but those are also our shut-ins.)

Now to just get the web version up! (It’s a lot of cut and paste.) If anyone wants the PDF, contact me.

— 2 —

Payroll project. We’re done with book work in my Payroll class so now we have a project for the rest of the quarter where we actually DO payroll. It’s a fictitious manufacturing company and the employees are all named after people from The Office. I’m looking forward to working on it this weekend.

— 3 —

Access is starting. We’re working on our Excel final projects right now so we started working on Access in class. The first chapter is database structure and building databases from scratch so I am pretty jazzed. Now to just power through my final projects for Excel so I can have some database fun.

— 4 —

Valentines for Ash Wednesday. Kelly decided to be helpful and come up with some Valentines for Ash Wednesday. I am TOTALLY printing them out and using them for Daniel’s class!

— 5 —

#TacoTrucksAtEveryMosque It’s totally a thing and I totally love it.

— 6 —

Special intention. If y’all could pray for a special intention, I would greatly appreciate it.

— 7 —

Recipe love. Some people came up with a collection of recipes for food to eat while watching the Olympics in South Korea. It looks AMAZING!

For more Quick Takes, visit Kelly at This Ain’t The Lyceum.

The Simple Woman’ Daybook: January 1, 2018

For Today… January 1, 2018

Simple Woman's Daybook

Looking out my window… sunny and cold with temps in the 30’s.

I am thinking… about the parish Lenten Devotional which I offered to coordinate.

I am thankful… for my church being such a welcoming place to Daniel. Advent IV was hard but they were fine with him there. When I was there yesterday, many people were asking about him. 🙂

One of my favorite things… pretty much everything involved in putting the devotional together. 🙂

I am wearing… my Old Navy flag shirt and black jeans.

I am creating… a survey for people in my parish to find out their wishes for the devotional.

I am listening to… my Youtube Christmas playlist. (It’s still the season of Christmas, y’all!)

I am hoping… my bloodwork doesn’t come out too horribly.

I am learning… how to make surveys in SurveyMonkey and Google Forms.

In my kitchen… plotting it currently. If Dad isn’t making anything special, I’ll probably put together a salad at Haggen or something.

In the school room… Daniel goes back tomorrow! He’s been asking about it *EVERY* day of Christmas vacation so he’ll be happy.

Shared Quote… “Creating fantasy is real work, important work. It’s a hard, cold world we live in, and sometimes we need to escape. Sometimes we need that more than food or water or a roof over our heads.” — G.A. McKevett

Closing Notes:

Word for the Year: “overcome”
Saint for the Year: St. Gemma Galgani

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

If I Had Not Given My Blog Up For Lent…

First of all…

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told you about the last week of Winter Quarter when Daniel’s ADHD meds appeared to have just crapped out. I spent three nights dealing with him hitting me, screaming, and spitting before I could get a doctor’s appointment on that Friday and we almost ended up having to take him to the ER on that Wednesday night because he was so out of control. It turns out that he had an ear infection in his right ear and the same drippy throat he gave me and he wasn’t sleeping because he was so uncomfortable. (Funny story: when his incredibly awesome pediatrician moved to examine her, he said, “no touch!” very sternly. Yeah, no. When you are preventing Mommy from sleeping and getting homework done, you lose your right to not be examined.) Some antibiotics and Dimetapp got him back to almost normal.

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have commented on Mike Pence and the Billy Graham rule and M@tt W@lsh’s stupid assertions on the subject by doing a 7 Quick Takes post of 7 reasonable occasions when men and women should be allowed to meet alone.

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told you how much I adore the first Sunday of Lent in the Episcopal church because it’s the Sunday we sing the Great Litany and my choir here in Washington spreads out in a U-shape around the congregation and passes each petition from person to person. It’s liturgy geek nirvana!

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would tell you about how much in love I am with Audrey Assad and how her song “I Shall Not Want” has been in my head and leading me to pray.

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have shared our Palm Sunday anthem with you so you could get it stuck in your heads too!

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told you about doing Confession with my priest on March 28th and why I do it as an Episcopalian. Lots of tears on my part (it had been 4 years since I had done it) but it was worth it and very healing. She also did Anointing for the Sick on me because of all the scars on my arms. (Can we just say that it had been a bad weekend and leave it at that?)

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told you about Maundy Thursday at my church and the quick Eucharist service and stripping of the altar before heading to the fellowship hall for pizza and a finger food potluck interspersed with foot-washing. There were so few of us that Helen (my priest) invited us up into the chancel area for the Eucharistic prayer. My congregation was joined by the Spanish-speaking congregation so it was a bilingual Eucharist and the Communion hymn was “We’ll Know They Are Christians By Their Love” which *TOTALLY* is appropriate when you have the two congregations mixing and Communion being given in two languages. It was one of those moments that is a glimpse of heaven and filled me with joy at being Christian and experiencing it.

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told you about Helen convincing the kiddos in the Spanish congregation to let her wash their feet and how touching it was to see her sitting on the floor with one of the two year olds and his very somber face while she stuck his feet in a Rubbermaid container of water and chattered at him in Spanish. When she was washing the feet of one of the little girls, I almost offered her the nail polish in my purse that I keep for pedicures but I didn’t know if her parents would have been OK with her getting her fingers or toes painted. Meanwhile, Helen’s oldest son washed my feet and gave me one of the best footrubs I’ve had.

If I had not given my blog up for Lent, I would have told how much I loved my Lenten discipline of reading only religious books and reading instead of surfing Facebook while I am out and about. I finished Father Tim’s Church Survival Guide by Fr. Tim Schenck and Seven Last Words: An Invitation to a Deeper Friendship with Jesus by James Martin, S.J. before picking up Spiritual Sobriety by Elizabeth Esther.

So glad to be back with y’all!

{five favorites}: Lenten Disciplines

#5Faves

Unless you live under a rock or don’t attend a liturgical church, you probably know that Lent starts next week for the Western Church. (Those in the East have another month to go.) As I’ve now been at this for 20 years, I thought I’d share some of my favorite Lenten disciplines. Also… if you want a shot at picking mine for me, go here before Friday and enter by leaving me a comment.

One

Spiritual reading. For the last few years, I’ve had some kind of spiritual reading component as part of Lent. I’ve done Igniting Our Values, Bread and Wine, and A Season for the Spirit before.

My recommendations if you want some Lenten reading this year: any of the above as well as Jesus: A Pilgimage by James Martin, S.J., Seven Last Words by James Martin, S.J. (I haven’t read this yet but am looking forward to doing so based on his other works), A Year of Biblical Womanhood by Rachel Held Evans, and Searching for Sunday by Rachel Held Evans.

Two

Crocheting a square every day. For fiber junkies like me, crocheting or knitting a square a day toward a blanket to be put together after Easter is a good way to be mindful of the season and also get some creativity in. Bonus points if you can pray while doing it.

Three

Dietary changes. I’ve given up meat, chocolate, and Coke before. It sounds really pathetic in comparison to the fasting guidelines that Eastern Christians have but it’s been an exercise in mindfulness to me as I’m forced to think about Jesus every time I get a craving for whatever it is.

Four

Blogging. I’ve done faith-blogging every day, blogging about Christian music daily, and blogging about music every Monday in the past. It was a good exercise in journalling and got me thinking about my faith and how I live it.

Five

Prayer. Two years ago, Beth Anne challenged me to find a church to pray in twice a week and Kelly challenged me last year to pick someone to pray for daily including 5 “enemies”. Both stretched me and improved my prayer life.

Go love up Ashley and the others.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: January 31, 2016

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY January 31, 2016

Outside my window… sunny. The sun came out while I was at church this morning and it’s warm enough for shirt sleeves outside. Weather Underground says it’s in the low 50’s.

I am thinking… about the data I’m putting into spreadsheets for tax purposes. I’m trying to get them done super early in case we owe so that we have time to come up with the money.

I am thankful… for the lady in my Bible study who rang my doorbell on Thursday night and handed me $tarbux cards that she had gotten for being a science fair judge. She’s not a coffee drinker so she passed them on to me. I appreciate that she thought of me.

In the kitchen… nothing from scratch tonight. I’ll probably heat up something frozen.

I am wearing… a blue-green shirt and jeans.

I am going… to take Daniel for a haircut in a little bit. The local barber does well with him.

I am wondering… about a lot of things right now.

I am reading… A Lesson in Hope by Phillip Gulley. I’m hoping to pick Accidental Saints back up before too long.

I am hoping… my week goes well and I can get done what I need to get done.

I am looking forward to… the knitting/crocheting group that meets at my church this coming Tuesday night.

I am hearing… Daniel chattering.

A Daniel story for today… he will point to the CD player and say an approximation of “music”. There is one specific CD by Altan that he loves and that CD needs to be the first in the rotation. (He is *TOTALLY* my kid.)

Around the house… mom is painting, Dad is puttering, Daniel is playing, and I am doing taxes.

A favorite quote for today… “You know you’re an adult when you can be right without proving the other person wrong.” — #1 on this list.

One of my favorite things… club soda. It’s standing in for Coca-Cola right now.

A few plans for the rest of the week: haircut for the kid, intake interview for the group managing Daniel’s meds tomorrow, mental health screening for me on Tuesday (my doctor up here doesn’t prescribe psychiatric meds so I’m having to get a psychiatrist referral through the county), follow-up doctor’s appointment for my lab work on Wednesday, Bible study on Thursday, and whatever else comes up.

A peek into my day… Someone in the Temperature Blanket Group on Facebook was sharing about a woman whose kids took a crochet hook and a chain she had made and framed it for her. I thought it was a fabulous way of remembering her and remembering her crocheting.

A crochet hook and chain framed.

Post Script…

You have four days left to pick my Lenten discipline. As much as it seems like I’m making a game out of this, I have honestly been stretched and have grown because of the disciplines people have assigned me so go pick one for me! It’s also open to everyone regardless of religious tradition.

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: January 24, 2016

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY January 24, 2016

Outside my window… sunny after several days of heavy rain. It’s in the high 50’s and I took Daniel for a walk without a jacket.

I am thinking… about the income analysis and tax prep from which I am taking a break.

I am thankful… for the opportunity to be a part of the ordination of my parish’s deacon yesterday as a priest in the Episcopal Church. It was at Trinity Cathedral in downtown San Jose and it was fun to be part of the choir which had members from the different parishes with which she had been affiliated. There was no incense but we had serious organ music, a harp prelude from our administrative assistant who plays harp professionally, torchbearers, a crucifer from our parish, a verger making sure we were all where we were supposed to be, and the bishop presiding.

In the kitchen… probably leftover shrimp pasta from Friday night. I was too full from lunch yesterday to eat last night!

I am wearing… blue-green shirt and jeans. As is my usual custom, I am barefoot.

I am going… out later to get more wipes for Daniel.

I am wondering… if I can get the curating of Daniel’s exhibit file done tomorrow and set the date for the appeal.

I am reading… A Lesson in Hope by Phillip Gulley. Accidental Saints is still on hold.

I am hoping… to get all the income analysis done today so I can start doing the taxes once I get all of Jon’s W-2’s and 1099 statements.

I am looking forward to… Thursday morning Bible study with my ladies.

I am hearing… some Bach being played on my laptop.

A Daniel story for today… kiddo came to me last night and said, “Mama, beyuh.” (Translation: “Mama, bed.”) I asked if he wanted to snuggle up under the fleece blanket with me out in the living room to fall asleep and he said, “No, beyuh.” So I went and tucked him (and myself) into bed. I thought I’d be getting up later and working on the income analysis but I fell asleep instead!

Around the house… Mom is painting, Dad is in the kitchen, and I’m in the living room with Daniel.

A favorite quote for today… “God’s grace is not defined as God being forgiving to us even though we sin. Grace is when God is a source of wholeness, which makes up for my failings. My failings hurt me and others and even the planet, and God’s grace to me is that my brokenness is not the final word … it’s that God makes beautiful things out of even my own sh*t. Grace isn’t about God creating humans and flawed beings and then acting all hurt when we inevitably fail and then stepping in like the hero to grant us grace – like saying, ‘Oh, it’s OK, I’ll be the good guy and forgive you.’ It’s God saying, ‘I love the world too much to let your sin define you and be the final word. I am a God who makes all things new.'” — Nadia Bolz-Weber

One of my favorite things… my daily latté from $tarbux and the people who have been sending me money on Paypal to fund my habit.

A few plans for the rest of the week: curating Daniel’s SSI file on Monday, possible coffee with Rebecca on Tuesday, Bible study and choir on Thursday, and whatever else comes up.

Post Script…

I fixed the Rafflecopter box for those who want to pick my Lenten discipline. It’s open to everyone regardless of their religious tradition.

Hosted by The Simple Woman.