Showing posts from November, 2007


If you have EVER in your ENTIRE life loved a Disney movie, go see Enchanted. D and Young Man with Integrity and I just came from seeing this movie, and all three of us LOVED IT. (Now, that's a recommendation!)

The Five Gifts Meme

Jan tagged me for the Favorite Gifts meme. Hmmm, this one's not easy for me, but I'll give it a go. Name five of your favorite all time gifts, either given or gotten. In no particular order... 1. A container of dirt. Sounds funny, I know. I was in group therapy for two years. It was through that group that my sense of self strengthened tremendously. Anyway, when you leave a group like that there's a leaving ritual that takes place and the group members all say goodbye, etc. etc. Some people gave me a going-away gift, and the gift from my therapist (the one I still see, MR) was a little container of dirt. It was the "earth" from a very special place for her, a place in New Mexico that is said to have special healing properties. She said, "Katherine, this gift is meant to remind you that you are a healer." Wow. 2. Two gifts from my sister: a plate inlaid with beautiful mother of pearl and a diamond and sapphire ring. The plate is really soooo beautiful. M

The Friday Five: Holiday Traditions We Don't Like

My first time to play Friday Five ~~ here we go... Will Smama asks: Please tell us your least favorite/most annoying seasonal.... 1) dessert/cookie/family food. Oh, easy one: Fruit cake. Gag. Hey, you know mobsters use it to make sure bodies sink to the bottom of lakes, don't you? 2) beverage. Eggnog, I guess. I have a powerful memory of my mother going "Yuck" and making a face every time my dad and uncle made eggnog at Christmas when we went to my grandmother's for the traditional get-together. Of course, my dad and uncle were putting a fifth of whiskey in there, and that's really the reason she didn't like it. Truth to tell, I've never actually tried eggnog. 3) tradition (church, family, other). It's not fun to have to share the kids at holidays, but other than that, I can't really think of one I don't like. 4) decoration. Oh, man, all these huge blow-up figures people are putting in their yards. There's one house down the st

Freefall into the grace of God

Denise Levertov is a wonderful poet, isn't she? The Avowal As swimmers dare to lie face to the sky and water bears them, as hawks rest upon air and air sustains them, so would I learn to attain freefall, and float into Creator Spirit's deep embrace, knowing no effort earns that all-surrounding grace. ~ Denise Levertov ~ Ohhhh, what lovely memories this poem evokes in me. Freefalling into the arms of God. Leaving the false security of ARCO. Strangely easy .... Preaching to the seminary community, professors and all. Valerie telling me to LIVE, LIVE in THIS moment .... Group therapy where I was Levertov's soaring hawk, the bravest I've ever been when it comes to a potential relationship .... And marriage. Risking it all, although somehow it didn't feel like the cost could be death, sustained no doubt by God and by a confidence in D's 'earnestness.' So it seems that Life ~real Life~ is a series of freefalls. Learning to trust. ....................Failing t

They add such delight to my life

My niece, Blonde Beauty, called yesterday to say hello on Thanksgiving and to wish me well in my new position. I wished her well, too--she has a new job! (No more temporary assignments! yes!) She has the most delightful personality: fun and friendly and at-ease in any situation. She's a great writer and I love to hear her sing. What is Blonde Beauty now?--hmmm, I guess she's 26 with a birthday coming soon on January 12. Her new job is in the accounting area, and my sister tells me she's enrolling in night school at the college in her town. I have the warmest memories of spending time with her and my nephew Handsome Boy before they moved to South Carolina. On the weekends I took them all over. We went to San Antonio via Amtrack. It was a great trip to the RiverWalk, swimming and room service in a fancy hotel~I have a picture of them jumping on the beds. [Discipline has never been my long suit.] On the way home the train died. Yep, just died on the tracks and what should have

my grandmother's recipe for dressing

Mompriest asked for the recipe. Here goes! The name is "Country Cornbread Dressing w/ Sausage," according to my mother, who was careful to get the recipe from her mother-in-law and very thoughtfully wrote this out for me and Beautiful Blue Eyes Laughing years before she died. 2 cups diced celery 1 cup chopped onion 1/4 cup melted butter 1 pan (8-9 inch) cornbread, cooked and crumbled 2 cups bread crumbs 1 pound sausage, fried, drained, and crumbled 1 regular can chicken broth 3/4 cup water 2 beaten eggs Saute the celery and onions until tender. In large bowl combine celery mixture, corn bread, bread crumbs, and sausage. Mix well. Add broth, butter, eggs, and water. Toss until thoroughly moist. Use 13x9 baking dish. Bake 30 or 40 minutes at 350. Makes about 3 quarts. For a 12-16 pound turkey. Note: Yesterday I used only 1 cup of bread crumbs and more butter. Much better.

a peaceful Thanksgiving morning

The cornbread's baking, the sausage (for the cornbread--southern style, my grandmother's recipe) is frying, D's still asleep, the cat's up and misbehaving, but otherwise it's an incredibly quiet, peaceful Thanksgiving morning. All three children are at their mother's house in City to the South. I wish they were here, but Christmas will be a joyous time all together. So different from the years and years I spent going to Thanksgiving at the home of some extended family member. They were always gracious to me, but I felt an undercurrent of "poor Katy." Perhaps that was my own stuff. The first Thanksgiving that D and I were married, though, we received no invitation, much to my painful surprise. It took me a while to adjust to that, given all my issues around "family," but now I see it as much better. I'd rather be here with D, just the two of us, than anywhere else. I'm afraid D might be getting sick. He said last night that his body ha

Happy Thanksgiving

D and I worshiped at the Thanksgiving Service at his church tonight. What a blessing! To be able to sit in that beautiful sanctuary (this is the church where we were married) and listen to a beautiful sermon, full of God's truth as I understand it, share a meal with good folks, oh! I felt God's presence and am grateful. I do want to remember just a few of the many things for which I am grateful tonight: my husband and my children-by-marriage, for my sister, niece, nephew and brother-in-law in South Carolina, for my brother and sister-in-law in Thailand, for my dear friends and other family members. my church where, although it's been so tough lately, I have nevertheless been privileged to serve, where I have loved the people and the work of ministry, where I have had wonderful opportunities to do some creative programming, where the beauty of the building's sanctuary has nurtured me...and so much more. technology and how it has allowed me to connect with some amazingly

Declaring God's glory

Oh, Monday, Monday. The Mamas and the Papas plaintive singing is part of my reality this morning. Do I really have to go back to work? This helps. From Thomas Merton: The forms and individual characters of living and growing things, of inanimate beings, of animals and flowers and all nature, constitute their holiness in the sight of God. Their inscape is their sanctity. It is the imprint of God's wisdom and God's reality in them. The special clumsy beauty of this particular colt on this day in the field under these clouds is a holiness consecrated to God by God's own creative wisdom, and it declares the glory of God. Such a lovely combining of the inner and the outer in this Psalm to remind me that ALL creation should declare the glory of God. And I am part of that creation. And so is my church. And so is my vocation. May my soul today not forget....


I am thoroughly enjoying this weekend~~it still feels like vacation. I guess that's because it IS still vacation! WooHoo! Yesterday around noon D said "Let's see if we can get tickets to the matinee performance of Man of LaMancha downtown." I was at that moment deeply involved in straightening and organizing my home office (I love doing that!), but am VERY glad that I agreed. I hadn't seen this musical since I was a teenager. I can sing parts of "The Impossible Dream" and "I am I, Don Quixote, the Man of LaMancha!" (who can't?), but I had forgotten the story. This particular production had its problems, but overall I just loved it! I'm such an idealist. The sermon I heard this morning has something to say about that, actually. The title was "Stewards of Life in the Realm of Death." Idealism, if it does not deny reality, is a good thing, I think. It's hope . If reality is denied, of course, idealism is only an empty exerc

An Unexpected Ending

Well, we're home. I've posted some pictures to my first post about the vacation below. Wonderful vacation, still it's nice to be home and in surroundings I love. We stopped in Sherman, only a couple of hours from here last night, just to extend our time away from home--one of those spontaneous, kind of playful decisions. We've had very good luck staying at Hampton Inns when we travel, and last night was no exception. This morning we stopped at the house in Denison where Pres. Dwight Eisenhower was born. Bought the tickets, took the tour--the whole thing. On the tour with us were a woman in her 70's from Pennsylvania and her daughter. Just the four of us on this tour. Very nice. When the tour ended, we said our polite goodbyes and D and I headed home. After about 90 minutes in the car we stopped at Cracker Barrel for lunch. For the first time all week our conversation turned to work issues, thinking of the upcoming week. The bill came, we paid and headed out the door

10 Random Things

Jan tagged me for the 10 Random Things meme. Thanks, Jan! Here we go! 1. I love to play Free Cell. At the moment my percentage is 98% won. Yeah, I'm good. 2. I know all the words to "Harper Valley P.T.A." and I sing it with feeling. 3. When I'm startled, I usually scream. 4. I've been to a wrestling the Sportatorium in City to the East. Weird experience. I went with a bunch of women when I first started working at the oil company in 1981. 5. I've also been to a Tractor Pull. Also in City to the East when I worked at the oil company and also a weird experience. A woman I worked with and her husband wanted to 'broaden my horizons.' They also offered to teach me how to shoot a gun. I declined that one. 6. Since I married D, I've been to many (I've lost count) Friday night high school football games. Both of my daughters-by-marriage were/are in their h.s. band, so we travel an hour or two to get to these games, in various parts of centra

Courage and Renewal, the Church, and me

I glimpsed what the Church should be during the five Courage to Lead retreats 2006-2007. (Thanks to Jan , once again, for the amazing image of Courage, below.) At these retreats we were invited to practice being the people God is calling us to become , and as I think about it, what better purpose for the Church than that? The Courage to Lead series of five retreats for clergy and lay leaders provided: * a time and a place designed to enhance our opening to the movement/voice of the Spirit * an emotionally safe environment * silence * opportunities that challenged us to move out of our false-ego's comfort zone * beauty * a context of both solitude and community, both of which are often required for courage to emerge * the patience to give over a year for all five retreats, an acknowledgement of the difficulty of this process * a pattern of "real world"/retreat/"real world" that also took the difficulty of this process into account * competent, inspiring, and co

Arkansas, Wednesday morning

Arkansas is VERY pretty, just as I remembered . We stayed one night in Hot Springs but didn't really see much of the town, electing instead to drive on here to Eureka Springs--all told, it's taken us about 12 hours of driving. (The back roads we're taking aren't busy at all, and we're stopping at places called "Alom Cove" just to see what it looks like!) Eureka Springs is different than I imagined. The B&B, pictured below, didn't have directions on its website, so D looked at a Google map Monday night and memorized it (the man is amazing). We drove into Eureka Springs, with me at the wheel, and were greeted with narrow streets very much like those I've driven in Europe. With my automated speaking MAP sitting beside me, I was directed to "turn left here," which led us UP a series of teeny, tiny roads--U p, Up, Up the mountain w e drove, hoping we would not meet another vehicle coming down! "Turn here," he tells me, then "

It's vacation time!

Oh, it's been too long since I've posted. Thanks, Jan, for the "I miss you" -- same here, my friend. The Courage to Lead retreat was wonderful. They have a good program, and Cindy Johnson and Estrus Tucker are excellent facilitators. I'm taking all my books and my journal with me on vacation (which starts tomorrow! yes!), and I'm going to read through everything and do some processing. Wow, I finally have some real time in front of me to just process what I want. Oh, I'm grateful. All summer I tried to use any extra time to work on the lecture (the 200 minute one)--glad that's done. Home from Courage on Thursday, but Friday and this weekend were spent working on our concert series and the additional worship service I do at church. Now, finally, I have some glorious free time in front of me. D and I leave tomorrow morning for a driving trip through Arkansas. I hope the leaves are turning--it's a pretty state, I've been there before, but