Saturday, April 26, 2008

Get Stuff(ed)

Hubba Hubba and I were talking the other night, and the conversation centred around our massive fear that Wiggle Man will grow up as A Consumer. Someone whose entire role in society is based on acquiring things. Our society is so obsessed with this that we even buy tap water. Water that we can get for free from our faucet--this we feel the need to purchase in disposable bottles. We're a disposable culture. I just hope we realise it before we dispose of ourselves in the process.

Now, I'm not sitting on top of my high horse (which, in turn, is not on top of a soap box) in this matter. I consume with the best of them, bottled water and all. I can't leave Target without a shopping cart full of things. (Which, incidently, is why I'm not allowed to go to Target as often as I'd like.)

This is about more than just getting and wasting stuff. What scares me is the underlying need that is buried below the slogans and commercials that make up our common consciousness. (Speaking of commercials, does anyone else LOVE the new Geico commercial with Mrs. Butterworth? I laughed my butt off. Which just proves my own point. I mean, a commercial using one product to advertise another? Genius.)

No, what truly frightens me is the need to anesthetize ourselves. We numb ourselves from feeling and boredom with food, entertainment, religion, and of course, stuff. I do this. We all do this. And I want more than that for my son.

The kids at church did the 30 Hour Famine for World Vision this weekend. They fast for 30 Hours to raise money that World Vision uses to help feed the hungry around the world. They get to feel what hunger is like. We made them sleep outside in boxes (and Hubba Hubba and I did, too) to try to help them understand that not everyone has a warm cozy bed. They had to "fetch" their water (bottled...) from our stream. What I hope they learned was that computers, phones, mp3 players and clothes don't matter much when you're thinking about the basics like food, water and shelter.

So where's the balance? Can't we find a happy medium where we have what we need, but not more than we need? That's what I want for my son, and what I want for myself.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008


It seems my life is filled with detours. You'd think I'd be used to them by now. Most of them have brought the most amazing blessings into my life; yet here I am, at another one, finding myself anxious and restless. Sometimes I wish God provided maps. Or GPS units. Something.

A detour brought me here, where I met Hubba Hubba. A detour took him to a different seminary than we would have planned, but it's been such an awesome (and sometimes trying, I'll admit) experience. Another detour brought us Wiggle Man. (Although, honestly, that was a planned detour. A decision to veer off course and explore the back roads.) And now we're in the middle of another one, waiting to see where God will take us next. Are we staying here for a little while? Is Hubba Hubba getting a church, or some other job in the denomination, or something completely different? Which, if any, of the bagillion things I'd like to do (musically speaking) will I end up doing?

Maybe this isn't a detour, after all. Maybe it's just a break at a rest stop, to stretch our legs and get ready for what's next. Hmm...I think I'll get a cheeseburger.

Monday, April 21, 2008

7:15 am

Monday morning. It's grey and chilly, but the squirrels don't seem to mind. They're up, chasing each other, eating bird seed...being squirrels. Wiggle Man doesn't mind; he's fascinated with his book right now. The cat doesn't mind; she's just glad I got up to feed her. I don't really mind, I guess. Tomorrow is my sleep-in day. Ah, how I love Tuesdays!

So, here I am, early in the morning, pondering the deep mysteries of life. Why do men get belly button lint, and not women? (Generally speaking, of course. I'm sure there are exceptions on either side of the great gender divide.) Why does Wiggle Man prefer paper towel rolls to all his fancy toys? What am I going to eat for breakfast when there is no bread for toast, or milk to put on cereal? Am I going to have to actually MAKE something?

I guess I'll have to figure that out later. Wiggle Man is trying to get my attention!

Saturday, April 19, 2008


Spring is here, and I love how a few blossoming trees can lift my mood! (I'd say they lift my spirit, but I think that's a little too grandiose. There are definitely things that lift my spirit, but flowery trees ain't it! Chocolate is closer.)

Wiggle Man and I go outside to visit all the birds--our chickens, who fascinated him; and our ducks, who generally run away from him. He's also very interested in grass, less excited about 'prickle balls' (I don't know what they actually are) when he sits or steps on them. I think we're going to get a sand box, for further outdoor adventures.

With spring comes softball season. Our church team had it's first game this week--a thorough beating. All in good fun, of course. It probably would have been better had I not walked everybody in the first inning, but things got much better once I figured out how to actually pitch slow-pitch. Hopefully at practice today I'll get a little more accurate.

I suppose after all this rambling about beautiful weather, I should get off the computer and actually enjoy it. Here goes!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Out of Africa

Tonight I really miss Africa. Actually, that's not the most accurate statement. I've been missing Africa for a while now. It's been two years since I went to Kenya, and I'd go back tomorrow if I could. It's amazing how that continent grabs people.

I think it's the children I miss the most. Never, in all my musical experience, have I heard such joyful singing. Some of the children we worked with only ate when they were at school. That meal of oatmealy mush was it for them, but they sang with an exuberance I have never seen in the most well fed North American child. There is something amazing about leading 300 children in "Father Abraham", all of them singing at the top of their lungs and laughing hysterically by the end.

Then there were the Maasai children who waited hours for us to arrive at their village of mud and dung huts. They lined up to receive a 'blessing' from us--if only they knew that their songs have blessed me so much more. I can still see them dancing, still hear them singing. I'm wearing the necklace the Maasai women gave me, but it no longer smells of fire and roasted goat--just my soap.

Ah, Father Abraham, you did indeed have many 'sons.' We're scattered across the globe in cities and villages, in brick homes and mud huts. Lord, bind us together in love.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


I've finally decided to do it. I have a blog. Last night, as I lay awake estimating how many hours of sleep I had left before Wiggle Man woke up, I thought about what to name this fine piece of writing. So why Poutine, you ask? Well, it's just darn yummy. (For my American friends reading this, poutine is french fries with gravy and cheese curds.) Super delicieuse! I, of course, cover all that with ketchup. Feel free to be grossed out if you want, but you'll never steal my poutine, will you? That's what I thought.

Then, I looked up the meaning of the word 'poutine.' Depending on who you ask, it means anything from pudding, to bad stew, to mushy mess. I thought--hey, this blog will be a mushy mess of all kinds of things. Poutine works! Those of you reading this will be treated to the latest accomplishments of Wiggle Man, my first born; the trials of losing "baby" weight...ok, and PRE-baby weight; marriage; chickens (the ones we raise, not so much eating them); the ups and downs of being an alien in a foreign land (it's different, I PROMISE) and whatever else comes to mind. This will be, to quote one of my high school english teachers, "verbal diarrhea."