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Off the top

A blog dedicated to the Source of everything good.

Sunday, April 30, 2006

maple flowers Posted by Picasa

Saturday, April 29, 2006

narcissus Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 28, 2006

fancy daffodils Posted by Picasa

Quick update

Hello everyone (all five of you who are still checking this blog, bless you!) --

Life pretty much trumps blogging for me right now, not to mention that I've been putting some things off in favor of blogging and tending to Intellectuelle lately that I must put off no longer.

I will continue to post photos, for anyone who's interested. Will probably post at Intellectuelle in the next few days; check out the current posts and comments there on the role of women in the church.

Thursday, April 27, 2006

hotel gable Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

trout lily Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, April 25, 2006


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I took this shot from the car as we approached the cloud.

Monday, April 24, 2006

forsythia Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 20, 2006

evening trees and moon Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

storm going over Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 16, 2006

sending forth promise Posted by Picasa

Thursday, April 13, 2006

more daffodils

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Wednesday, April 12, 2006


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Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The joys of aging

I’ve no idea how I got on their mailing list. I received a catalog from a company that says their products help you “look and feel your best at 40, 50, and 60.”

(age-wise, I qualify, but...who told them??)

Featured in the catalog:

– the slimming and sexy “Miraclesuit” swimsuit. Will make you “look 10 lbs. lighter in 10 seconds.”

– “Spectacular sunreader glamour glasses.” “No more shuffling between sunglasses and reading glasses when you want to relax with a good book.” Have “tastefully molded frames” (60s-style)

– Not Your Daughter’s Jeans with “Tummy Tuck” panel. “Pure Jeanius.” (My daughter’s jeans are about 18" long. The model in the catalog doesn’t need the “Tummy Tuck” feature.)

– “A basic with built-in support!” 3/4 sleeve V-neck tee with built-in Coolmax shelf bra “for support and moisture management.” “Functional as well as flattering.”

– five different models of magnifying mirrors

– Dermacolor – “offers superior coverage of discolorations anywhere on your body and won’t rub off on clothes.”

– gradient-compression knee-high trouser socks

– comfortable bra extenders

– stay-dry, “worry free” panties (in plain or lacey)

There’s an assortment of other products designed to help combat grey hairs naturally, provide fast relief for ball-of-foot pain, and, last but certainly not least, “put the spark back in your romantic life.” (Including some, ah, items I wouldn’t expect to see in an, um, “general” catalog!)

Whoo boy. Life’s just begun!

(Note: I am not making fun of anyone who needs some of these products or is greatly benefitted by them. I’m simply bemused by the fact that I, still so close to my youthful blush, should receive such a catalog...)

Monday, April 10, 2006

struggling to rise Posted by Picasa

Sunday, April 09, 2006

trees by the lake

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My husband and I took a walk by the lake this evening. The weather was brisk, but gorgeously clear.

Saturday, April 08, 2006

tuned in Posted by Picasa

Friday, April 07, 2006

Word from Every Tribe Entertainment

From the Mailbag of WORLD magazine, April 8, 2006 issue:

Word for God

“St. Francis of Assisi implored us to ‘preach the gospel at all times and when necessary use words.’ Some observers are concerned that the name of Jesus was not directly referenced in the recent motion picture End of the Spear (‘Walk this way,’ Jan. 21). But the story was told through the eyes and voices of the indigenous tribe that took the lives of five missionaries in 1956, and a native language was used. The Waodani word for God – Waengongi – was repeated early and often. And not the scene where Dayumae, the young Waodani woman who had fled the tribe years earlier due to the violence, was confronted by a Waodani warrior in the jungle who wanted to know why the missionaries did not fire their guns. ‘Waengongi had a Son who was speared,’ Dayumae told him. ‘He did not spear back, so that those who speared him would one day live well.’”

– Randy Swanson
Every Tribe Entertainment
Oklahoma City, Okla.

Thursday, April 06, 2006

God doesn't need hit men

My latest at Intellectuelle.

Spring on ice Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, April 05, 2006


Our wonderful pastor said something in his sermon last Sunday that I thought was especially blogworthy:

The world is an unpredictable place...

...neither hostility nor adoration can be trusted.

Something for every blogger to keep in mind. :-)

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Intellectuelle update

We've been having a great in-depth discussion on women's place in society and the church over at Intellectuelle. The discussion spans several posts. Check it out if you are so inclined, and feel free to add your comments (guys too ;-) ).

Silly quote(s) for the day

Why is it called a "soap opera" if nobody's singing?

Here's one that's not exactly silly but a groaner nontheless (seen on a church sign):

A lot of kneeling will keep you in good standing

And this one from last week:

(paraphrase)[You're not too crazy to be helped by God]...even Moses was a basket case

Monday, April 03, 2006

I’ll help you find your way

It’s been fun for my husband and I to watch our kids develop their natural musicality and individual musical tastes, as we are both professional musicians. We encourage them to explore whatever they’re interested in and share with them the wide variety of musical styles that we enjoy ourselves.

We've given them some of our “old” albums to listen to. One son has really taken to Michael W. Smith’s I 2 Eye. It's been both reminiscent and uplifting for me to hear it again, especially the song titled “Help You Find Your Way":

It can be wise
Or it can be a paradox
To seek solace in your solitude

And when it feels
Like you're living in a box
You need someone who believes in you

A promise true when tried
I'll be right here by your side
So whatever your need be
Know that you can lean on me

I'll help you find your way
I'll help you find your way
When you're lost in all the madness
When you're blinded by your doubt
When you need someone to be there for you
I'll help you find your way

Don't keep your thoughts
Locked behind your cellar door
All shrouded in a mystery

Just let them out
That's what friends are for
To give without giving the third degree;

No need to be ashamed
I've been through it just the same
So when your path misleads
Know that you can call on me


Sunday, April 02, 2006

Spring is here

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Do you see the bee?

I enjoyed our first "longer" day today (Daylight Savings Time)

Saturday, April 01, 2006

The Geriatric Gap

I read a wonderful article in my church’s newsletter this morning written by the director of Adult/Visitation Ministries. I always appreciate what he has to say. Though quiet and unassuming, he's a spiritual pillar of the church.

In his statements, Pastor L. referenced an article titled “The Geriatric Gap” by David Solie, MS, PA that appeared in the February 2006 issue of AGEnda. He stated that one of the reasons it's become so difficult for adult children to care for their aging parents and for the parents to give up their independence is that baby boomers are the first generation to have reached middle age having grown up in a non-communal America.
They are accustomed to not necessarily staying close to the parents as they have moved to distant parts of the country to seek employment opportunities. This distancing has led to the elders losing their status as elders and the younger people losing some of their ability to understand and communicate with their parents and grandparents.

(I have previously noted this non-communality as it affects care-givers on the other end of the spectrum, i.e., new parents and those with very young children.)

People do not enter a holding pattern and plateau at age 65. [Though the body may be in decline], the mind, in most cases, continues to be active with powerful creativity. The brain may be slower in processing things, and people may not be able to multitask as efficiently as they once did, but reflecting and wisdom is at an all-time high.

It’s also important to be aware of the loneliness that can affect the older adult. Pastor L. calls us to work in partnership with older adults, offering companionship and helping them to ease into living with lesser control over their bodies and lives. We must respect and honor what they are capable of in terms of assisting with decisions that affect their lives.

The article concludes with this amusing (and cliche'd) yet moving poem:

When I was Young
written by 101-year-old Nina Johnson

When I was young my slippers were red
And I could kick way over my head.

When I grew older my slippers were blue
And I could dance the whole night through.

Now that I’m older my slippers are black
I walk to the corner and puff my way back.

I realize my youth has been spent
My get up and go has got up and went.

But I really don’t mind when I think with a grin
How many places my get up has been.

And now that I’m out of life’s competition
Each day is an exact repetition.

I get up in the morning and dust off my wits
Pick up the paper and read the obits.

If my name’s missing I know I’m not dead
So I eat a good breakfast and go back to bed.