Monday, December 12, 2011

Stand outs!

I play the piano with a lot of expression. Translated--I look dumb when I play the piano. This problem manifested early on, in the ninth grade, when I played piano for our high school choirs. One day, the girls choir seemed in especially good spirits, laughing and smiling. Afterward, my friend told me I was the reason for their good humor. I had been swaying back and forth on the piano in movement with the languid song! As if I needed another reason in ninth grade for social crisis!

Allen and I were watching a concert on the Bible channel of some fantastic violin players who look dumb when they play. I explained to him my theory that you can never play an instrument well without looking dumb. To prove my point, I am learning to play violin. I play it very poorly  and I look completely normal with no expression whatsoever or funny body posture except I have a pained look on my face, which coincidentally, everyone else also has when I play violin.

In my need to make everything Bibley, I compared my theory to being a Christian--how if you don't look goofy to others, to the "world" or whatever, you aren't doing it very well. One of my favorite verses right now: "And you will again see the distinction between the righteous and the wicked, between those who serve God and those who do not."

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Zebra Drool!

This year, for Lils' birthday, we visited the Wildlife Animal Safari in Stafford, MO. We went because Lily likes Ligers, an animal you might remember if you ever saw the movie Napoleon Dynamite. Similarities my family has with Napoleon Dynamite: Love of ligers, chapstick, tater tots and eighties music and a propensity toward bad hair. (Probably because our hairbrush is in the freezer. SEE: "Forgetfulness" blog entry.)

At the Wildlife Animal Safari, you drive through what is like a beautiful state park and exotic animals actually stick their heads in your window hoping you will feed them oversized hamster pellets. I actually got Zebra drool on me which was only a good thing because I had eight years olds with me and it was someone's birthday. 

Thanks, God, for your fun creation, squealing little girls, and animal halitosis.

Ski Masks!

Lils is ski-mask-obsessed right now and she created her own which she wears proudly to school and everywhere. Because she is eight and is thereby omniscient, there is no convincing her that ski masks don't rank very high on the list of desirable fashion must haves.

One thing Lils is: a bad dresser. Nothing could bring this into focus more than school "Spirit Week," the one time of year when students can break free from their uniforms and express themselves in the form of poor fashion choices. During Spirit Week, most everyone dresses badly, but just "normal-bad." Not BAD bad. Not the totally worst-ever like my girl.

Example: Call it creativity gone wild, but last year, during Spirit Week, her outfit involved shredded gift bags, plastic, tree garland. Words can't do justice describing the fashion injustice. I tried, believe me I tried, to dissuade her, offer her more "normal-bad" options, but she was determined!

But when I dropped her off at school that morning, as she saw her friends, and they were stunned (rightly so) at the sight of her, she became insecure, full of regret--you could see it all over her sad little face and I felt terrible leaving her. But I did. I came home, dressed in the most terrible outfit I could throw together, and drove back out to take snacks to her class. So at least they'll think she comes by it naturally.

I was proud of myself for such a fine idea, even though I was completely mortified to step out of the car. Something about it reminded me of what Jesus did, wrapping himself up in our flesh to fellowship with us and show us a better way, even though as he did, he must have on some level thought: Yuck.

Friday, December 9, 2011


Last week, a hairbrush fell out of our freezer. And I found our cordless phone inside a pencil case, inside a food cupboard in the kitchen. I wish I was kidding. Oh, and get this. We use a ceiling lift to get my husband in and out of bed. We were racing around to get ready for church one morning and I painstakingly got the net under him, fastened all the loops up to the lift and began to push the button. ACTION! Allen stopped me. "Aren't you forgetting something?" he asked. To be honest, I was a little annoyed, but I rechecked all the fasteners, yep. Everything was in place. Then, I noticed, he wasn't wearing any pants! I am sooooo scatterbrained and forgetful! Most of the time...

But I have no problem remembering with computer-like clarity almost every incident of my beloved hubby making me mad. Don't get me wrong, I'm a forgiving person--with an excellent brain-file.

I'm so glad God is not like me! He not only forgives but FORGETS all the jerky stuff we do. That is so nice, God! Thanks for not rubbing our nose in it!


Milo, cat fashion icon.

We have two cats: Lola, a fussy, hissy indoor cat. And Milo, a giant, fun-loving, gentle, outdoor cat. They pretty much hate each other. Our girl, Lily, has fun putting them together in fight-inducing situations. Do you think this is how young cock-fighters got their beginnings?

It came time to take Milo the wookie to the vet to get immunized against stuff like rabies, and worms, and other gross/bad things cats get. We didn't have pet carrier and that cat does NOT like riding in the car. So we put him in a tall, roomy clothes hamper with a lid. We used bungee cords on all sides to keep it ULTRA-secure. Milo was his usual laid back, easy-going cat-self...until the engine started. The hamper began shaking, vibrating with hurricane-like force. About half a mile from home, he sprung free and began making hot, frantic laps (all claws on deck) around the car with shrieks and screams (his and ours).

How do you explain to a cat: "Hey. I'm your master! I care about you!  I wouldn't do you harm. This is meant for your good. I'm getting you someplace here!"

Something in that short, drama-filled trip was painfully familiar. I'm sure God faces those same frustrations in the midst of my frantic protests--"I know you hate this, I know you are freaked out, but I'm your Master. I know more than you, can you trust me? I love you and would never do you harm. I am getting you someplace!"

I'll try to remember, God, when the journey is unpleasant.