July 18, 2012

Red said to us a few weeks ago, “I don’t know that I believe in God. I pray, but I’ve never heard a voice.” It was one of the most beautiful things he’s ever said. Paul and I were both able to say, “neither have I.” We followed by sharing how we do know that our prayers are being answered, and how we feel that God talks to us. Not long after we had a discussion at church on receiving revelation. When asked if and how we receive revelation the room was coyly silent so I raised my hand.

I explained how cerebral it was for me, that inspiration came as clarity of thought combined with a depth of peace never replicated anywhere else. I told how it always came after wrestling out the ideas and coming to a conclusion.  It happens for me in the form of confirmation (or the opposite!) of the conclusion I worked out on my own.  And I told them of the anecdote of my seven year old commenting that he’d never heard a voice.

Soon women around the room began to share their experiences and they were as varied as the women themselves. There are people who do hear voices. There are people who have visions, or have visionary dreams. I learned that the way we receive communication from God is as different as we are. There is no one right away, there is only the way that works for us. It’s such a beautiful, lovely, comforting thought.


What are little boys made of?

July 17, 2012

The story of the gross-ness of boys always starts with infancy. No mother can forget the blowouts, the projectile vomitting, and the sheer pleasure they seem to derive in a big juicy burp. It graduates to self feeding, dipping peanut butter bread in water, and eating sand. Soon there are messes everywhere and you can only hope that none of the messes are of organic compounds, all hail plastic with it’s just-wipe-clean sanitation.

You shouldn’t be surprised to know my boys aren’t big on cleaning. They never do it without several promptings and never see the job to completion.

It shouldn’t surprise me so much that I have finally found a household chore they not only enjoy doing, but they fight over who gets to do it. It is, of course, the grossest chore of all. My boys, it turns out, love to scrub toilets.

July 11th

July 11, 2012

Do I like Slurpees more than ice cream? Of course not, but today no one offered me free ice cream.


July 10, 2012

From the moment things started to heat up with Paul’s interviews for the job out here, I felt good about Texas. It had never been on my radar before as a place to live but suddenly I found myself getting excited. It was the next step, it was the right step, and our world was going to change in a new, exciting, and positive way. The closer we got to moving day, the more excited I was. Frankly it was the only thing that got me through the emotional horror of moving week.

I had a singular moment in the week before the move with my dear friend Carolyn, a woman with whom I have eight years of history, our lives being intertwined in ways I could never have anticipated. Not all of our interactions have been positive memories and we couldn’t see the world more differently, and yet in spite of all of that (because of it?) I truly love this woman. She approached me, excitedly, and announced to me that she had just realized that I was moving to the land of Glen Beck.

Frankly, I spend very little time thinking about him, and I apologize to you who adore him, but I when she said that my heart sank. For the first time since this had all started, I was filled with doubt and dread. I can’t do this, I can’t do this, I can’t do this.

But I love Carolyn and I know she loves him, and that doesn’t make her a bad person nor does it make me a bad person. I swallowed my fear and stammered something like “wow … uh … has anyone seen Ruth? She’s my ride.” (That must have sounded strange given that Paul was standing behind me, how could anyone have known I had a lunch date with Ruth?)

Paul and our friend Kathy had a front row seat to the whole thing. Paul saw Kathy and Carolyn immediately notice my face, crestfallen and ashen. Carolyn immediately recognized that she had delivered news I had not taken to be good, according to the expression on her face. Kathy seemed humoured by the whole thing, Paul was entertained but awkward. I found Ruth quickly and escaped.

I spent the next couple of weeks worried that Carolyn was right. I was worried that everyone would be a rabid Glen Beck fan, not because I don’t think Glen Beck fans can’t also be wonderful people and dear friends, they are, but I worried that they would all be that way. I worried deeply that I would be thrust into a homogenous community, one of my strongest fears. I comforted myself that Dallas was a diverse city full of imports and that I could surround myself and my family with a variety of people and ideas. I prayed fervently that this was true and that I would be okay in our new home.

In what was probably our second Sunday, someone made a point in Sunday School about the importance of sharing ideas and said, “the election is coming up this fall and some of you are going to vote for Romney and I will not hold it against you.” It was then that I realized that I am going to be just fine here. I have found people who think and question and wonder and love regardless of differences. I don’t yet love these people as much as I love my friends in LA, and it’s possible I never will, but that’s okay, too, because I will love them differently, and we are all okay.


July 7, 2012

An hour after we put the boys to bed Red came in and told me that he thought he heard police outside our apartment. I reassured him that maybe our neighbours needed some help but that we are fine so he should go to bed. After shooing him away I sent Paul to take out the trash and investigate.

When he returned he gave me the following report:

“I didn’t see anything, except a monkey waving out the window at me.”


July 6, 2012

The playing children dilemma is like unto the sleeping baby dilemma. Disturb to feed or wait? I keep waiting for them to tell me they’re hungry, I bang around in the kitchen, etc. but they continue to play so contentedly that I dare not ruin the moment.

I am hungry!!

Half Truths

July 5, 2012

We all lie to our children. Here’s my latest: these little black boxes contain special food for the ants so they don’t have to march through our home looking for crumbs.

Don’t judge.  I’m not proud.  They are fire ants and they are biting me.