Tuesday, March 31, 2009

i did not write this. not even a little.

Introduction To Poetry, by Billy Collins

I ask them to take a poem
and hold it up to the light
like a color slide

or press an ear against its hive.

I say drop a mouse into a poem
and watch him probe his way out,

or walk inside the poem's room
and feel the walls for a light switch.

I want them to waterski
across the surface of a poem
waving at the author's name on the shore.

But all they want to do
is tie the poem to a chair with rope
and torture a confession out of it.

They begin beating it with a hose
to find out what it really means.

"It is possible that God says every morning, "Do it again" to the sun; and every evening, "Do it again" to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we."
- GK Chesterton. Because he sums God's joy up much better than I.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

"I knew things were going to turn around some time!"

I went to St. Louis for the end of my spring break and it was a lot of fun. We saw the arch, the art museum, Missouri Botanical Garden, the St. Louis Walk of Fame (although it was rainy) and a myriad of restaurants and basketball games.

Kate Chopin is one of my favorite authors. I'm sure there was something saddening and artistic I could do with her description halfway underwater, but since it was currently raining, I felt no real need for inspiration. Alas, to quote Kate herself, "so the storm passed and everyone was happy."

Yogi Berra, born in The Hill (close to where I stayed.)

Our gelato server inspired me. I found a penny under the counter, and told him as I dropped the penny in, "Look, a penny for you!" He responded with (not despondently or sarcastically), "I knew things were going to turn around sometime!"
What a joyful outlook! I've also been reminded the past few days that it's not always about God answering with a yes or no to our decisions, but it's about us honoring God with our choices. That's helped me as I thought about racing at Nationals, as I think about The Future, as I contemplate the trappings of life... And who knew, the deliverer of good gelato was also a deliverer of good news!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Done and Done

Calvin finished 7th at DIII Nationals this year. The meet was in Minneapolis (Tom, Jeanne, Nik, and Zoe came to watch on Saturday morning), a good bookend with freshman year Nationals.

I had a great individual meet, swimming some best times in the 50 fly (on the 200 medley relay) and the 100 free (on the 400 free relay.) I don't have any pictures to put up because everyone with cameras went on to spring break. Just wanted to let everyone know that I'm now done with 15 years of competitive swimming. (As long as you consider "8 and under" agegroup competitive swimming.)

I saw "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" last night. It's a sad movie. And it makes me want to read the short story it was based on. And pick through it a little bit.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

And on the 8th day, He made chocolate ice cream.

Navajo Fry Bread
Sift into a bowl:
4 1/2 cups flour
1/3 c dry milk powder(optional)
1/2 t. salt
2 t. baking powder
Stir in:
1 1/2 c water
1/2 c milk

Knead with hands. Pat or roll into circles approximately 5" in diameter (I tried to flatten mine as well.) With fingers make small hole in center. Fry in hot oil at 400 or MH. Dough puffs and bubbles. Turn when golden brown. Drain on absorbent paper and serve hot with honey, or use while fresh with:

Navajo Tacos
Spread Navajo Fry Bread with refried beans/other taco toppings (I cooked some onion and green peppers), then top with cheese. Broil until cheese melts.
Sprinkle generously with shredded lettuce.

It was very easy, and though you can only see Cara eating, the rest of my house stole some with honey and ate it too. It says it serves about six... Two tacos more than filled me up.

Second point on the agenda - I need tips on how to make an omelette. Because I keep desiring an omelette but end up eating scrambled eggs with toppings.

In the spirit of enjoying food and not taking it for granted, I'd like to leave you with a quote from Bonhoeffer'sLife Together:
God cannot endure that unfestive, mirthless attitude of ours in which we eat our bread in sorrow, with pretentious, busy haste, or even with shame. Through our daily meals He is calling us to rejoice, to keep holiday in the midst of our working day.

I challenge you to eat your meals with someone else - not standing up - slowly, putting your fork down in between bites - focused on the food and not the television/radio/dogs. (Well, maybe dogs, if that's who you're eating with...You know who you are...) THIS is the day the Lord has made (Psalm 118:24) - if we want to know joy, it must be THIS day. Today! Let us rejoice and be glad in it - in all of it, including the meals.