Tuesday, December 30

looking ahead

A new calendar year is just around the corner, and while I am not one for making resolutions (because I generally am so bad at keeping them), I am looking ahead to what 2009 will and may bring (at least the first half of the year):
  • a new doctor! I have finally made that appointment and will see the new doctor early in the year
  • a new spiritual discipline - I'm praying my way through the church directory - seven families a week. I'm sending out a postcard the week before, letting them know that I'll be praying for them, and asking them to let me know if they have prayer concerns. (I hope that I stay focused on this throughout the year...I tend to start things like this strong and then get distracted by a new idea)
  • a new apartment - probably - after being burglarized twice during my time here, I don't feel safe; also, I'm in a downstairs apartment and not close to much, so I am looking to change that. We'll see what happens.
  • the end of my thesis journey!...please, God. I am oh, so close to being done, and am in the midst of scheduling my committee (please let Marty say Feb 13 works for her!) and should be working on that rather than writing here; but I am determined to be done by the deadline (which happens to be Feb 13...and then filing by April).
  • A return to the TA role - my adviser has asked me to TA the intro to worship class, which I have done thrice before. I am thrilled to keep in touch with the seminary and academia in this way!
  • Graduation in May!! I could graduate twice...we'll see.
  • after March, I'll be into the "seconds" at ALC - 2nd Palm Sunday, 2nd Easter, 2nd Memorial Day, etc. It'll be nice to have some history in this place and not be on the deep learning curve the whole time.
Now, for what I hope I'll do as well
  • I need, need, need to spend time, energy and focus on my health. I need to focus on better nutrition and moving my body more. So simple, in theory, so complex in implementation. I've discovered that living alone makes it so easy to slip into bad habits and stay there. No one to notice (or nag) if I eat cookie dough for dinner or read that hour in the AM instead of walking.
  • I also need to get back to ND this summer - see family and friends. Greta's death, and talking with my aunt, Thelma, solidified that. I'm contemplating a road trip visiting friends along the way...again, we'll see.
well - that's what on my mind tonight. I hope that the two of you that read this have a very Happy New Year's Eve.

Sunday, December 28

sudden sadness

So...in between the two services this morning, I drove home to pick up Dad for the second service. When we arrived at the church, I had a message on my office phone from my dad's sister, Thelma. The sister between them in age, Greta, died unexpectedly this morning. We were able to catch Thelma on her cell phone as she and her husband were driving to Bismarck, and now we wait for her return call with more information. No details were known about Greta's death when we spoke with Thelma, and of course no information about services. I'm hoping that the timing of the service lets me take advantage of cheap, cheap flights from Cali to Bismarck (a rare thing, indeed, and even rarer on short notice)

So, we're sad in this place - Dad is the oldest of the four siblings, and was close to his sisters, so even though he won't talk about feelings, I know he's sad and all of that. He flies back to ND tomorrow (has always been the plan) and I may be seeing him much sooner than thought.

Friday, December 26

Revgalblogs Friday Five

It's Boxing Day! Whatever that may mean to you, I invite you on this day to simply share five things that today, December 26th, will bring for you.

1. Christmas Dinner (pushed back one day due to the chef's sheer exhaustion Christmas Day).
2. Thinking about Epiphany sermon...can I use the powerpoint again? It was a hit Christmas Eve.
3. Reading and relaxing
4. Bagging/boxing leftovers and doing dishes from dinner (yes, this year the chef does all of that)
5. Relaxing and reading.

sigh...it's not such a rough day after all...especially since #1 and #4 are done, done, done.

Wednesday, December 24

Happy Christmas Eve

So, I'm snuggled back in bed (I love laptops!)...considering my sermon. I'm going with a "hook" discovered just yesterday (thanks semfem!) - about seeing yourself at the manger. We often talk about seeing ourselves at the cross, but at the manger is a new idea for me. We have screens and projectors in ALC's nave, so a few weeks ago I put together a powerpoint of nativity images, from different times and locations. I wasn't sure what I was going to do with it, but now I know. Now, however, as the last minute rapidly approaches, I have to practice in the space with the remote control, make sure the images I have chosen actually show up OK (we're having color issues with the projector) and also practice the timing, and make sure I have good notes. Ugh. It's a lot.

So, I'll go in early afternoon, do that; prep and serve at the 5PM Children's worship; run home, get Dad, return for 7PM worship; return Dad to apartment; return to ALC for the waiting period, and then the 11PM service; return home to sleep; get up and do Christmas. Sr. Pastor has (semi-reluctantly) given me permission to not make an appearance for Christmas Day service (he took off Thanksgiving Eve, so it seems fair to me - also, we have a guest preacher, so having two presiders seems a bit over the top). So, unless the guilt overwhelms me, Christmas Day will be spent in flannel pants, opening gifts and eating the traditional family meal.

Happy Christmas Eve and Merry Christmas to you.

Saturday, December 20

the begging plant

so...a few posts ago I posted about the plant that wouldn't die. I came into work recently to find it clearly needing water, and how did I know? what was the subtle hint? (scroll down a bit...)

yep - that'll do it. even I, the worst gardener ever can't miss that. Best of all, I dump some H2O on it and in a few hours is perky and happy again. I love this plant - it makes me feel less like a plant-serial-killer.

Friday, December 19

revgalblogs Friday Five

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. write sermon
2. cut more ribbons for the little dudes to wave at the processional during the 5PM service
3. pick dad up from airport
4. clean apartment
5. write, write, write on the thesis

Tuesday, December 16

contemplating Christmas Eve

I preach Christmas Eve. That's fine - I preached the same on internship. It's not the fact that a bunch of people will be there that has me wondering what to say - it's the old problem of how do I make this new? Most people come to church on Christmas Eve to sing songs, light candles and feel good about the world at least for a short time. I guess I see my challenge as breaking into that, a bit, to get people (or at least some of them) to be struck by scandal - God as a human, God as a baby, God in a humble stable, born on a trip. (BTW, if Joseph had family in Bethlehem, why weren't they mooching off of relatives for a place to sleep?)

Anyhoo...I wonder what to say. What will be the "there"? (do the hand gesture here, jprgmeck) I have a powerpoint of nativity images that I can run during or after my sermon...or both...but I'm not sure what the hook to the images will be. I'm thinking something about seeing the familiar in a new way (I have a variety of images from around the world and throughout time)...but I'm not sure.

I continue to ponder it in my heart.

Sunday, December 14


the young man mentioned in my previous post died this afternoon. He was at home, as he wished. His family, a hospice nurse and a Stephen minister from the family's church (who is also a family friend) were all present around his bedside. It is also his 19th birthday.

I start crying when I think of this. It is just so sad, and it was such a gift for him to be home with everyone there surrounding him as he died. But, he was only 19...and only 19 for a few hours when he died. It just sucks. There are no words that will make this better for anyone - the blessing is that he was tired of the hospital and the tests and the transfusions, and he is done with all of that. 

I trust that God is present with this family, and I pray for peace and solace for them as they approach Christmas and the months and years to follow without this funny, smart and amazing young man in their daily lives. 

Saturday, December 13

saturday, part 2

sometimes I wonder what God is up to in the world...if God is up to anything, even. The younger sibling of the victim of the abuse I've posted about - this 18-year old is dying. He had aplastic anemia. At the time of the trial in October, he had started chemo, and because no bone marrow donor was available, received a cord blood transplant. The bone marrow has not started done what it was supposed to, and he decided to check out of the hospital and spend his last days at home with his family. His 19th birthday is tomorrow, and with all this family has been through, it seems just too much to deal with this, too. As a parent, how do you watch your children go through so much that you can't fix, when all one wants to do is make it better.

So, prayers for this family are appreciated. I know God is in the midst of all of this - it just irritates me that this family has so much piled on them.


this morning began with a couple hours of laying under my down comforter, in my cozy bed, reading. Ah....bliss. Then, I was off to a sorority alumnae gathering where there was good food, good company, and much laughter around the ornament exchange (where I ended up with the coveted martini shaker and glass set...which came from Crate and Barrel, but I can't find it on the website, so I'll post a picture later). This is my first real foray into a sorority alumnae group, and am enjoying it. I am meeting all sorts of women that I otherwise would not have a chance to get to know.

Today's gathering also provided the opportunity to work on the non-committal, non-judgmental "hmmm", whilst nodding and inwardly going "Eeek!!!" One woman there told me her son and daughter-in-law work for Campus Crusade for Christ in Florida, and that she works for a research/lobbying group affiliated with Focus on the Family. I tried my best to look neutral and say only "hmmmm" when she explained that her company's work is to get "family values" into the state laws, perhaps thinking that as a pastor I'd be into that. I did manage to not cringe, run away screaming, or pleasantly say "what exactly to do mean by that?" I just stood there, nodded, and hmmmm'd.

Now I'm at the office, hoping that here I can get some writing done (I'm sooooo close to being done with the thesis, but can't work at home), and then it's broomball tonight with the youth group....maybe. Yesterday I had a migraine headache and I still feel crummy and have also started sneezing and my nose is running....so, if they have enough drivers, I just may head home, get some rest and hopefully beat this bug back.

Now to the writing...I can do it - yes, I can.

Friday, December 12

rev gal blogs friday five

1. What color are your beautiful eyes? Did you inherit them from or pass them on to anyone in your family?
Hazel - I think my mom's were close to this color.

2. What color eyes would you choose if you could change them?
I wouldn't change 'em - in the right light they match my hair.

3. Do you wear glasses or contacts? What kind? Like 'em or hate 'em?
glasses and contacts (no, not at the same time). I'm kind of indifferent at this point. I do like shopping for new frames, though.

4. Ever had, or contemplated, laser surgery? Happy with the results?
I've contemplated....a lot. I've also contemplated the lack of funds available for said surgery.

5. Do you like to look people in the eye, or are you more eye-shy?
I'm an eye-to-eye person, when possible and appropriate.

Bonus question: Share a poem, song, or prayer that relates to eyes and seeing.

For whatever reaon, "Jeepers, Creepers" was the first thing that popped into my head - (see video below for a good rendition by Louis Armstrong and Jack Teagarden)
Jeepers, creepers....whered ya get them peepers
Jeepers, creepers...whered ya get those eyes
Gosh oh, git up....howd they get so lit up
Gosh oh, gee oh....howd they get that size

Golly gee...when you turn them heaters on
Woe is me...got to put my cheaters on

Jeepers, creepers....whered ya get them peepers
Oh, those weepers....how they hypnotize

Jeepers, creepers....whered ya get them peepers
Oh, those weepers....how they hypnotize
Where did ya get those
Golly whered ya get those
Where did ya get them there eyes

Tuesday, December 9

because I'm not in the mood to work

Your Quirk Factor: 50%

You're a pretty quirky person, but you're just normal enough to hide it.

Congratulations - you've fooled other people into thinking you're just like them!

Monday, December 8

motivation: zero

I have no desire to be at the office today. I would much rather be on my couch with a book, or my cross stitch, or watching DVDs. We haven't seen the sun for a while, so that's probably part of it. I also had a loooonnnggg day yesterday, so that contributes; and in general, I'm just kind of tired. I don't have anything pressing on my plate, and I could work ahead, but I'm not in the mood. Let's face it, the mood I am in is sleepy, lazy, unfocused. Blah.

Friday, December 5

rev gal blogs friday five

"Imagine a complex, multi-cultural society that annually holds an elaborate winter festival, one that lasts not simply a few days, but several weeks. This great festival celebrates the birth of the Lord and Saviour of the world, the prince of peace, a man who is divine. People mark the festival with great abundance- feasting, drinking and gift giving....." (Richard Horsley- The Liberation of Christmas). The passage goes on, recounting the decorations that are hung, and the songs and dances that accompany the festival, how the economy booms and philanthropic acts abound....

But this is not Christmas- this is a Roman festival in celebration of the Emperor....This is the world that Jesus was born into! The world where the early Christians would ask "Who is your Saviour the Emperor or Christ?" And yet our shops and stores and often our lives are caught up in a world that looks very much like the one of ancient Rome, where we worship at the shrine of consumerism....

Advent on the other hand calls us into the darkness, a time of quiet preparation, a time of waiting, and re-discovering the wonder of the knowledge that God is with us. Advent's call is to simplicity and not abundance, a time when we wait for glorious light of God to come again...Christ is with us at this time of advent, in the darkness, and Christ is coming with his light- not the light of the shopping centre, but the light of love and truth and beauty.

What do you long for this advent? What are your hopes and dreams for the future? What is your prayer today? In the vein of simplicity I ask you to list five advent longings....
  1. for my brother and his unit to be safe in Iraq
  2. for friendships to bloom where I am currently planted
  3. for inspired writing to happen in order to finish the d@#% thesis
  4. for healing - for me, for others
  5. for eyes to see and ears to hear what God is saying

Thursday, December 4


so this morning went OK - two people from the congregation showed up, and I had a long conversation with a random person. So, I count it as a success. 

a short time ago, in a courtroom in Kansas, the perpetrator of the sex offense that I wrote about previously was sentenced to 59 months in prison. That is 4 years, 11 months. That is a long time. As I've said, I'm glad I don't have to make that decision, and I trust that the judge did so with thought and consideration for the facts of the case. My heart breaks for his wife and family. My heart has broken many times over for the victim. This is just a messy, messy thing. I don't, even a little, celebrate this sentencing, but I also recognize that it is likely the right thing, and that his actions do have consequences - it's just that these consequences bleed over and affect many, many other people. Prayers for peace are raised up today.

coffee shop ministry

so, I've started this new thing today. Every Thursday morning I'm going to show up at a coffee shop for a few hours in the morning and see who drops by. I've decided to read something overtly theological (or even the Bible - gasp!) and just be - say hi to people and just be present. We're posting the schedule on the congregation website, because the prime reason is to go where people are in the morning and be present in a way that allows them to drop in while they are already out and about. 

here's the hitch. A month ago I started asked people where they are in the mornings on Thursday. I've asked in several venues...and not one person has responded. So...for December I chose my own coffee shops in the general vicinity of my apartment and that are convenient to the rest of my Thursday morning. I had a number of people say "what a great idea!"...but not one person emailed me or wrote me a note letting me know where they are. I imagine that I'll continue this even if no one ever gets on board - I like being out of the office - and while I'm not in a clergy shirt this morning (no time to iron and be at Starbuck's by 6:30 am), I'm contemplating doing that to increase my visibility...or maybe not. We'll see. As I write this, maybe I'll just go through the directory and figure out where people live, ask people where they work, and then make my own choices from there. Like all kinds of ministry - it's a work in progress, I guess.

Sunday, November 30

happy new year!

Yep - happy new year - liturgically speaking, that is. Today is the first Sunday of Advent, and therefore a new liturgical year begins. I love Advent! It is my favorite liturgical season. I love the incarnational emphasis; my favorite hymn is O Come, O Come, Emmanuel; I love blue; I love the anticipation; and I hate the waiting. Not just waiting for Christmas (although at 40 years old, I don't mind that so much), but the waiting for the return of Christ. Partly because I'm not sure what that's going to look like and I'm partly afraid that I'll miss it. I'm a bit worried that Jesus will return, not in a cloud of glory, but as a helpless baby again, and I'll not notice. I'll be so wrapped up in my own stuff, my own expectations that I'll miss it.

I know I miss it every day - every day I miss glimpses of the kingdom of God breaking into the world. I don't help as many others as I could/should, I don't accept help many times when it's offered, and I miss it. Or, I'm so caught up in my own stuff, that I don't notice when those things do happen, and I miss it. The final words of the gospel today are "Keep Awake!"...and I suspect I'm sleeping or clueless much of the time. So I continue to pray for eyes to see, hears to hear and a heart to respond.

Tuesday, November 25

not so much...

so, the sentencing didn't happen. Apparently over 20 people spoke to the perpetrator's character and that he had been punished "enough" with the things that had already happened to him. That took up the allotted two hours, so they convene again next Thursday afternoon and continue on. 

over 20 people - I'm not sure what to do with that. Did they all know what he admitted to on the stand? Did they all know that he admitted the 'relationship' to the bishop 15 months ago, and in fact he brought up the victim's name on his own? Did they know that some of the things he testified that he and the victim did were also felonies? Did they know? Maybe they did, maybe they didn't, but I think very few of those people knew him then and now. I know one family from the church is at odds because one of the kids was there today, and the other kid and the parents objected. But he did it anyway. So many people have been hurt...so many families have been affected. I don't know what to say.

Yes, I believe in grace and reconciliation and forgiveness - but I also believe that needs to be preceded by repentance and remorse, and I have seen none of that from the perpetrator. What is "enough"? I don't know. But a young woman's life was changed forever - not just her relationship with others, with men affected, but also her relationship with God was forever changed and manipulated by this man. I don't know what to say. And so I pray and I wait. 

Monday, November 24


Tomorrow is the sentencing. I'm conflicted. I want justice to be served...but I also wonder if it hasn't been already. He'll never be a pastor in a main-line denomination. He'll be a registered sex offender. Will justice, will society, be served if he serves prison time? I don't know. He used to be a friend...a good friend (or so I thought)...and so I don't want him to be in prison. But should he serve prison time? I just don't know. I am glad that I don't have to decide. A few weeks ago, the victim asked me what I thought should happen - we had an honest discussion...but neither of us knew what the "right" thing would be.

So, today (and tomorrow) I pray as I have been for months - for justice, and for mercy. For peace and healing to infuse the victim, the perpetrator and all affected. And tomorrow - special prayers for the perpetrator, his wife and their families. No matter what, their lives will never be the same.

Friday, November 21

revgals friday five

1) Do you have a food processor? Can you recommend it? Which is to say, do you actually use it?
I have no food processor, and (perhaps strangely) don't really crave one

2) And if so, do you use the fancy things on it?
no processor to put fancy things on

3) Do you use a standing mixer? Or one of the hand-held varieties?
I DO have a standing mixer - but it's having an electrical issue at the moment, so I'm using the hand-held until I get the Kitchen Aid into the shop.

4) How about a blender? Do you have one? Use it much?
Have one - it mostly lives in the cupboard though.

5) Finally, what old-fashioned, non-electric kitchen tool do you enjoy using the most?
I have a jar opener that I use at least once a week. It's got a sliding grip on it so it can adjust from very small to very wide mouth jars. LOVE IT!

Bonus: Is there a kitchen appliance or utensil you ONLY use at Thanksgiving or some other holiday? If so, what is it?
Yes, several, and they all revolve around baking - the ricer and other lefse making things, spritz cookie press and sandbakkels tins.

Thursday, November 20

the plant that wouldn't die

This is the plant my brother had delivered for my first day of work at LSLC. I'm generally horrible when it comes to keeping plants alive - my black (rather than green) thumb runs all the way up to my elbow - I once managed to kill a bamboo plant, for pete's sake!

this thing won't die. I dump water in it a couple times a week, rotate it so it gets sun on different parts of it, and leave it alone other than that. It does wilt quite dramatically when it needs water, but a few hours after a good soaking it perks back up to it's original shape. I've had this thing for 8-1/2 months now - and it's not only still alive...but still blooming. It's also a wonderful connection to my older brother, and right now that's a nice thing!

Thank you to all who left encouraging comments on my last post. I appreciate each comment more than I can adequately express. As far as the brother - he talked to my cell phone voice mail yesterday...he's in Kuwait for 10 days of training before heading on to Iraq. Other than being exhausted from travel and a messed up sleep cycle he sounded well. Hopefully next time he calls, I'll be able to take the call.

As far as the case in Kansas - sentencing is next Tuesday. For those of you who are prone to do so, I'm asking for prayers for the perpetrator, his wife and their families. I can't imagine the stress they are all experiencing and I pray that God's peace is with them in this time. And peace to all of you this night as well.

Monday, November 17

i'm back

So, I haven't been here for a long while. There has been a lot going on, and I haven't always been sure how, or what, to share. I have now been at LSLC for 8-1/2 months. It mostly has been challenging - the system is a bit on the dysfunctional side and I'm still not certain that congregational ministry is my gig.

In addition, in October I was back in Kansas for a trial. A year ago, a young woman disclosed to me a sexual "relationship" with the youth director of the church I volunteered with in Kansas - the physical relationship began when she was 14 and he, 26. She disclosed to me, because he was soon to be ordained and she knew that I was required to report the offense. She also reported it to the police and the process culminated in his criminal trial in October. I flew back to be with the victim and support her, but ended up being subpoenaed to testify for the prosecution. As the perpetrator was a friend at one point in my life, it was a difficult thing to do. It was also incredibly hard to be there and to hear the other testimony. He was found guilty of a felony offense, and we wait for the sentencing, which is next week. My heart aches for the victim and her family as they continue to deal with this - but also for the perpetrator and his family. He is facing the possibility of prison time which must be devastating on him and his wife. I pray for them frequently, but I also am relatively certain that they wouldn't welcome my prayers and see me as part of their "downfall." The church is a small world, and many people know part of the story, and in several versions I don't come out looking so well. I know that it isn't about me and how I look to others, but it bothers me to know that some people think that I did the wrong thing...and that some of those people are pastors and leaders in the church.

Also, my brother is deploying to Iraq. As I write this, he is in the airport in Shannon, Ireland waiting to go to Kuwait for 10 days before reaching the final destination of Tallil in Iraq. He is part of a supply unit, and will not even be in convoys, but he'll be there nearly a year, and I will worry about him every day. I'm not sure how military families do this repeatedly and over years!

So, I'm back to the blog. I'm not sure if anyone is still checking in, but if you are let me know.

Sunday, February 10

i'm back, and gone

so, after LSLC extended me the call, I was able to accept in person at a church special event program. It was wonderful, and overwhelming and more than a little bit scary the amount of trust and affection these people have given to me simply based on my position - I say that because I haven't me most of them yet, as there are hundreds of members in this congregation. 

I have now moved - I'm still in N California, but no longer in the Bay Area. I am excited to discover this new part of CA, but sad to leave the Bay Area. I'm also sad to leave the seminary, as over the past 5-1/2 years PLTS had become an important part of my life. I worked in most of the departments during my time there and learned a lot. I hope I left the place a little better for my time there. I do no, if nothing else, reception looks, well, actually inviting these days, so I'm proud of that contribution!

Part of this moving thing is buying furniture. I bought a mattress set yesterday and also did a little bit of couch shopping. La-Z-Boy is having a huge sale, and while there is part of me that thinks I should go to Goodwill, there is another part of me, saying "buy the new couch dummy. You've never owned one, and you'll likely be entertaining people in your home, it's time to not look like a grad student anymore." I am leaning toward listening to the the latter. I'll post a picture of what I end up with. 

Today I'm going to a different church in my new area. The husband of a good friend (he's a friend as well, but I know her much better) is being installed today. So, I'm off to worship there this morning, then help her with a reception, then back for the installation. It's going to be a churchy-social day. 

Tuesday I fly to ND for a few days to get my there together to move. I've had stuff in storage at my dad's place for over 6 years - it's going to be a bit like Christmas...I'll even get the cold and the snow! I'm back in CA on the 17th, hopefully unpacking my "pod" on the 19th and then back to the Bay Area on the 20th for the weekend of my ordination. It's going to be a busy few weeks, but fun, fun, fun!

Sunday, January 27

the decision

So, this afternoon LSLC voted to call me as their next associate pastor! I have spoken with the call committee chair and the senior pastor and am now waiting to get the official Letter of Call. Apparently, I need to write a Letter of Acceptance - anyone know what needs to be in that?

I am very excited about doing ministry in this place and working with the staff. My time so far with the congregation has been a blast, and I know that it won't all be sunshine and roses, but I've got a good feeling, and most importantly, a strong belief that God is calling me to this place. Also, I've got a good lead on a place to live - hopefully that will work out, and I can start the moving process and working on getting my stuff there from ND and Oakland and Berkeley.

Thanks to all for your prayers, support, encouragement and humor. I can't believe that I'm going to be a pastor!

waiting...the homestretch (I hope)

after all of the months of waiting - we're closing in on 11 - I'm close to receiving a call. Maybe as close as 90 minutes away. Today is the special congregational meeting at LSLC and I'm the topic. As I write this, they are minutes away from beginning the 2nd service of the morning and the meeting is after. Ugh. This has been the loooonnnngggest morning ever! I was up very early - mostly because I am sick and went to bed super early - but still - I've straightened up my room, got my tax stuff together, hung up all of the loose clothes, figured out how to forward my cell phone calls to my land-line, made and ate a hot breakfast and watched two episodes of an NBC show on-line. And I still am waiting. It's been the theme of my life for the past year, and I'm wondering how I'll deal with actually having an answer. To be honest, I don't think this thing is going to derail at this point, but nothing is certain, and so I wait.

Friday, January 11

So...here I am again. Who knew I was gone so long? I hate, hate, hate New Year's Resolution time - I don't make them, when I have tried, I don't keep to them...I hate it, so I simply avoided blogging this year around that time because I felt some existential pressure to announce my resolutions, or at least have deep things to say about the past and/or the future. I have none - resolutions, deep thoughts, any of that.

I do continue the waiting game. LSLC votes on my call at their annual meeting Jan 27th. I am there this weekend doing the "meet and greet" thing, as well as preaching. I'm not terribly nervous about it - it will be what it is, and I trust that God is at work in spite of me, sometimes through me, if I've done a decent job.

There's not much else to report - so here's the RevGalBlogPals Friday Five:

1. When is your birthday? Does anyone else (famous and/or in your own life) share it?

February 6...Ash Wednesday this year, sigh. Famous people - Babe Ruth, Ronald Reagan, Tom Brokaw; and a quick check of Wikipedia reveals also Natalie Cole and Axl Rose (as well as a bunch of people I have never hear of)

2. Do you prefer a big party or an intimate celebration for the chosen few?

Lately, I've put the word out, gone to the neighborhood pub and wait to see who shows up. My social circle continues to shrink, so the "chosen few" may be the whole of my local friend group this year.

3. Describe your most memorable birthday(s)--good, bad, or both.

I guess it was 30. I decided that I wasn't going to quietly turn 30, so I started putting together my own party until a friend took over and put together a huge bash at a local restaurant with lots of people and good food.

4. What is your favorite cake and ice cream? (Bonus points if you share the cake recipe). Or would you rather have a different treat altogether?

This is so boring...white cake, sweet frosting and vanilla ice-cream. Yes, it's true...but Oh so good.

5. Surprise parties: love 'em or hate 'em?

The only one I have ever had was a hoot, so I'll give it the thumbs up. I've given them as well with mixed results.

Bonus: Describe your ideal birthday--the sky's the limit.
I'd love to rent a house near a beach, and have friend coming from far and wide for a couple of days of good food, good drinks, good times.