The Simple Woman’s Daybook: November 4, 2014

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY November 4, 2014

Outside my window… sunny. It’s allegedly 80F outside but it is freezing in the house. Well… either that or I’m having chills.

I am thinking… about Thanksgiving week and how to keep Daniel entertained on the 2.5 days he’ll be off of school before we leave for my parents’ house.

I am thankful… for my mother-in-law and Jon taking Daniel on errands so I can get some more rest and fight this stupid cold.

In the kitchen… all I’ve had today is Instant Breakfast and yogurt so nothing is cooking on my end. I smelled onions when I went in for water so I think Jon has a raw onion cut up in the fridge.

I am wearing… a wine-colored shirt and jeans.

I am praying for… friends traveling in the Holy Land, a call for Jon, for Katie and her husband as they adopt Felicity

I am going… to try not to go online to see any election returns today. It’s one of the few times I’m thankful I don’t have access to TV.

I am wondering… about how to work Christmas this year.

I am reading… Gossamer Ghost by Laura Childs. Apparently, I was #1 on the list for it in the LA County library system.

I am hoping… to get back to walking every morning again once this stupid cold goes away.

I am looking forward to… being well again.

I am hearing… Daniel — they just got home.

Around the house… it was relatively quiet until a few minutes ago.

A favorite quote for today… “I may not have gone where I intended to go, but I think I have ended up where I needed to be.” — Douglas Adams

One of my favorite things… being able to breathe easily. I miss it.

A few plans for the rest of the week: a trip to the grocery store that isn’t Trader Joe’s, the new dishwasher being installed tomorrow (the other one broke last week so we’ve been having to wash by hand… I know, #firstworldproblems), and whatever else comes up.

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Baseball, Witchcraft, and Why I Despair At the State of Our Media

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

Rules for eating and such rendered in the style of the Old Testament. I first read this 10+ years ago and it still makes me almost die from laughing so hard. Anyone with small children will understand. My favorite line is, “Leave the cat alone. For what has the cat done that you should so afflict it with tape?”

— 2 —

So… I guess you heard that the Giants won the World Series? It was an amazing series and I’m thankful that I got to watch/listen to all or part of 6 of the 7 games. (I watched all of Games 1-3, saw a portion of Game 4 in addition to my mom checking the score on her smartphone during dinner on Saturday, listened to Game 5 on my long drive home on Sunday, and got to watch/listen to over half of Game 7 last night.) I’m impressed that Madison Bumgarner pitched in Game 1, Game 5, and then 5 innings of Game 7 last night. (So is Jason Motte, my favorite closer with the St. Louis Cardinals. Real classy, Jason. It’s why I follow you.)

To the Royals fans who read: you guys have a kick-@$$ team and you made my boys work for that World Series victory. I wouldn’t doubt that y’all give the MLB a run for their money next year because Game 7 could have gone either way. And seriously… your team had the Kansas City Symphony play the national anthem one night and had one of your opera stars sing it the next night — y’all are classy. :)

— 3 —

Yet another baseball Quick Take. One interesting trend this season has been “Hunter Pence signs”. It was a weird trolling thing started by some Mets fans this past summer and it went viral. At all of the away games, fans of the home team bring the signs. There s a Twitter collection of them here.

There’s even a rap video based on the signs:

— 4 —

One of the few times I miss having a TV and cable. I’m kind of bummed that I likely won’t be able to watch Election Night stuff from Jon Stewart and Stephen Colbert. Apparently, it’s going to be fun.

— 5 —

The difference between the media in the USA and the media in Canada. Can we just say that the Canadian media won on this one?

(And for all the people who are going to tell me that I hate my country and should move to Canada, we did try in 2009.)

— 6 —

This one goes out to all the moronic conspiracy theorists claiming that vaccines cause autism. Actually, there are more than 100 genes that contribute. That many genes are a bit much to be turned on by the body’s response to a vaccine.

And for the morons who are citing a bad reading of a Canadian study linking the MMR vaccine to febrile seizures, you might want to read the part of the study which mentions the seizures occur most often in kids who had been selectively vaccinated or on delayed schedules. There’s also the fact that some kids get these seizures around ages 2.5 to 4 years old and said seizure is the first sign that the kid has a fever. I should know… Daniel is/was one of them and we made 3 trips to the ER for them in the year after his third birthday. (One of those trips was actually the night before his third birthday.) It’s terrifying to watch your kid seize like that, but it sure beats watching your kids on a ventilator because your delusion and paranoia over pseudoscience landed them in the hospital with a completely preventable disease.

— 7 —

Wow… a somewhat balanced look at Common Core. I don’t love everything Simcha Fisher has to say but her piece on Common Core was very balanced. I hear a lot of complaining about the math portion, but the way they’re doing math actually makes a great deal of sense to me. There was a teacher who taught my elementary school class how to do mental math, how math works, and how numbers relate to each other. This means that I have a better than average grasp of the metric system and scientific notation, both of which make infinitely more sense than the English/imperial system used in the United States.

As for literature, Simcha mentioned that they tend to err on the side of non-fiction which is fine with me. I always read things that interested me and my parents didn’t have to introduce me to good literature because I generally found it on my own.

— Bonus —

Here’s something for Halloween. I found this piece on the history of witchcraft to be pretty interesting. (Then again, my college degree dealt with this sort of thing, especially in the history and anthropology classes I took.) She’s not endorsing the practice of Wicca or anything (and she mentions that Wicca is a 20th century invention) and she makes some interesting points about cultures in which witchcraft is still an excuse for stuff going wrong. It’s definitely worth a read.

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: October 27, 2014

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY October 27, 2014

Outside my window… dark. I’m blogging late at night which seems to be my M.O.

I am thinking… about the things I need to get done tomorrow while Daniel is in school. Lots of papers to sort, insurance phone calls, etc.

I am thankful… for Katie of Blessed with Full Hands who got to meet her little girl today in China.

In the kitchen… dishes in the sink because the dishwasher isn’t working correctly.

I am wearing… my Run for the Little Flowers Virtual 5K shirt and capri sweats from Lands’ End that are about 10 years old.

I am praying for… a call for Jon, some special intentions, and continual discernment regarding a few aspects of my life.

I am going… to hopefully get my hair cut tomorrow. It’s definitely time.

I am reading… Becoming Who You Are: Insights on the True Self from Thomas Merton and Other Saints by James Martin, S.J. and another murder mystery whose title is eluding me.

I am hoping… to find lots for Daniel to do on Friday when he is off school.

I am looking forward to… the costume parade at Daniel’s elementary school on Thursday morning. He’ll be dressed as a Giants fan so I’m also hoping that the Giants win the World Series. ;)

I am hearing… Jon’s CPAP.

Around the house… quiet because everyone else is asleep.

A favorite quote for today… “Isaiah 55 provides an entirely different framework for thinking about God’s justice, because it suggests that we have it backward — the mystery lies not in God’s unfathomable wrath but in his unfathomable mercy. God’s ways are higher than our ways because his capacity to love is infinitely greater than our own. Despite all that we do to alienate ourselves from God, all that we do to insult and disobey, God abundantly pardons again and again.” — Rachel Held Evans, Evolving in Monkey Town

One of my favorite things… watching “raccoon TV” in the evenings — there are raccoons nearby who stop by my in-laws’ yard for a snack and they get whatever leftovers there are that aren’t edible for the humans.

A few plans for the rest of the week: possible haircut tomorrow, some walks by myself/with Daniel, choir practice on Wednesday, Daniel’s costume parade for school on Thursday, and whatever comes up this weekend.

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Momcation Recap

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

You know you’re loved when you walk into church on Sunday and the acting music director hugs you and tells you that you should have shown up earlier so you could have sung with the choir. Before June, I hadn’t been back to the church for 11.5 years and in the two times I’ve been home since, I’ve gotten recruited for music the next Sunday. (I’m not THAT good — the music director has known me since high school and knows that I can sightread vocal music passably on my first try.) This Sunday, the anthem is “Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring” with organ and violin. I haven’t sung soprano in 16 years… but I’ll be trying to help the section on Sunday and practice went really well tonight. Thankfully, it’s a piece I know backwards and forwards.

— 2 —

Coffee dates. I got coffee with my friend Rebecca twice while I was home. It’s hard to do, given that I usually come up here with Daniel, so it was good to see her. She also came to church with me on Sunday which was lovely.

— 3 —

World Series. I’m kind of bummed that the Series is tied at 1 game apiece because I was hoping the Giants would sweep and I’d get to see all the games. (I don’t have access to TV in southern California and I’ll also be driving home during the game on Sunday.) Still, Game 1 was glorious and I’m glad that Blanco got a lead-off homer in Game 2.

— 4 —

I’m (almost) caught up on all the TV I usually watch. My parents have “On Demand” so I’ve been able to catch up with all the CBS stuff I usually watch but haven’t this fall because I don’t have much online time and that makes watching my shows online hard. I haven’t watched the new NCIS spin-off yet and I may not just because it’s another couple hours of stuff to watch.

— 5 —

I’ve gotten some fabulous walks in. I’ve taken some walks on the trail by Los Alamitos Creek and they’ve been really nice. It’s a good setting for getting in some prayer time because while there are people around, it’s also pretty quiet.

— 6 —

I’ve unfortunately had to watch political ads. “On Demand” usually protects me from them but I’ve had to put up with them if I’ve wanted to watch baseball. It’s kind of scary how normal people don’t actually look to see who has paid for the ads… because it is really quite telling. I also wish there was something that killed all the ads, mailings, etc. if you have already voted. (I’m a permanent absentee ballot voter so I voted about a week and a half ago.)

Thankfully, the only really contentious races this year for us in California are the House ones and some of the ballot measures. Neither of our Senators is up for re-election and our Democratic governor is about 20 percentage points ahead of the Republican challenger. (He’s so far ahead that I think the GOP in California has given up on the challenger because I haven’t seen *ANYTHING* about that particular race since the primaries in June.)

— 7 —

I’ve gotten to see rain for the first time in months. We got some rain on Monday. It was glorious.

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.

Max Lucado Prayer Gathering and Ebola Kits

For those who don’t run in evangelical circles, author Max Lucado (whose works are accessible and useful for Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox Christians) had an online prayer gathering for ISIS and ebola (among other things) at 7 p.m. EDT/4 p.m. PDT today. If you didn’t get to participate, you can watch the video below and pray along — our God is outside of time and your prayers are just as useful, necessary, and welcome now as they were during the live recording.

Max mentioned that World Vision had Ebola kits where you could donate to send supplies. I found two separate links for what he might be talking about:

Donate to the Ebola Outbreak

Assembling kits for Ebola caregivers

I know there are a few non-Christians who read this blog and I’m sharing all this for the purpose of disseminating information and calming false panic. One of my Facebook friends posted an image which reminds us that more people have been married to Kim Kardashian than have died of Ebola in the US.

The Simple Woman’s Daybook: October 19, 2014

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY October 19, 2014

Outside my window… sunny and in the 80’s. We might see some rain tomorrow and I’m looking forward to it.

I am thinking… about many many things that I’ll journal out later after I do the watering and shower.

I am thankful… that I got to be present for Rev. Kate’s last Sunday at the Episcopal Church in Almaden, the church that loved me as I was a teenaged convert trying to figure out my salvation with fear and trembling.

In the kitchen… Jimmy chicken, a family recipe. I made a normal batch for myself so I’d have a few days of dinners.

I am wearing… my Reclaim Hope shirt and running shorts.

I am praying for… a call for Jon, for a few intentions for people in my life, and for discernment as I’m kind of in a crossroads of my life.

I am going… for lots of walks this week.

I am wondering… where my parents’ Maine Coon cat is.

I am reading… Evolving in Monkey Town by Rachel Held Evans. It’s a re-read.

I am hoping… for rain tomorrow.

I am looking forward to… more quiet time and maybe even coffee with Rebecca later this week.

I am hearing… the whirring of the fan on my computer.

Around the house… cat fur.

One of my favorite things… solitude.

A few plans for the rest of the week: walks, taebo, prayer, journalling, and resting.

A peek into my day… Here is the picture I submitted for the Run for the Little Flowers Virtual 5K.

Me after my 5K walk.

Hosted by The Simple Woman.

7 Quick Takes: Back in Northern California

7 Quick Takes

— 1 —

THE GIANTS ARE GOING TO THE WORLD SERIES!!!!!!!!!!! That was an insane game tonight. I’m glad the Giants won but I am also glad that I got to watch it tonight and that St. Louis played pretty well. One of Jon’s higher ups used to live in Kansas City for a number of years and I’m hoping for a fun series for both our sakes.

— 2 —

NCIS binge. I’m taking care of my parents’ cats while they’re up with my grandmother and this means that I have access to TV. I only watched one episode of NCIS tonight but I’m planning a binge of it in the next week and a half. I’ve missed it and while I could theoretically watch on my computer, I don’t normally have a huge amount of computer time so watching it and my other shows isn’t happening right now… except being up here on my “Momcation”.

— 3 —

What is a “Momcation”? Essentially, I’m on vacation from being a mom for the next 10 days. It’s a long story as to why but I’m cat/house-sitting for my parents and Daniel remained down south with Jon and my in-laws. Don’t worry — my marriage isn’t in jeopardy. I’m doing my parents a favor and my in-laws and parents are happy that it’s giving me a break that I haven’t had in 5 1/2 years.

— 4 —

So what am I doing? I drove up yesterday and today, I did errands and went food shopping for myself. I’m planning to spend some time praying and journalling about how to move from the crossroads where I’m at in my life and I also have plans to have coffee with Rebecca. Oh yes… also catch up on all the TV I’ve missed, hence the NCIS binge.

— 5 —

Completely shocked. I weighed myself yesterday for the first time in months (the last time was at a doctor’s appointment) and I’m 3-5 lbs below my pre-pregnancy weight. I guess all the core work, the walking, and other changes I’ve made are helping? I’m wondering if I can’t increase that loss so that I’m down to my pre-Montana weight when I leave my parents’ house.

— 6 —

Just a thought. Is there any chance that a device could be created that stops all political ads on TV and in the mail once one has voted or submitted an absentee ballot? I voted this past week (permanent absentee ballot FTW!) and I really don’t need to hear about who wants my vote anymore.

— 7 —

Possible rain. Weather.Com claims we’re not going to have rain in the next 24 hours. My head disagrees! (I freaking love weather change migraines.)

For more Quick Takes, visit Jen at ConversionDiary.Com.