Sunday, February 20, 2011

On Second Thought

I was driving to work last Sunday afternoon to begin my week with a much-welcomed snow-melt underway. A couple of days in the upper 40s during the week made a nice dent in our accumulated snow, so much so that our sump-pumps began running later in the week. But this is Minnesota. We've got a major winter storm bearing down on us with snow totals of 10-16" expected by sometime Monday. Today's drive into work wasn't nearly as nice as last week.

Normally I'd have been out on my bike taking advantage of the mild weather but my focus was on glass for the better part of my weekend. Both blown and stained. Tammy and I had two separate sessions at Foci on Thursday and Friday which helped us a lot in becoming more comfortable about being back in the glassblowing studio again. Steve spent three hours with us on Thursday bringing us back up to speed and helping to rewire in our brains some of the necessary skills of the art. We're so thankful for his interest in seeing us learn.

Steve has been blowing glass for five years and does some beautiful work. We especially like the pet memorials he creates for holding the ashes of cremated pets. Such a great idea.

I spent a fair amount of the rest of my weekend down in the shop continuing work on the 6th of 6 panels for our entertainment center. It's possible I'll have it done next weekend. That would be nice.

Tammy is on the Sunshine committee where she works and is the go-to person when a card needs to be sent to one of the team members. But rather than buy a card, she chooses instead to personalize each one by making them herself. She's getting more creative all the time...

My Valentines Day card from Tammy: photo 1 and photo 2.

I'm enjoying my time away from my laptop more and more as I continue to break free from the shackles of the net. I do think the internet is a powerful tool and one that I don't want to be without but I'm finding that for me, less is more. My online time is now down to less than 15 minutes on a typical day. So to anybody who thinks I'm maybe ignoring them on Facebook, you'll understand that's not the case at all. I'm simply finding other things to do with my time. My Kindle is one of those "other things".

Speaking of which, I just finished reading an excellent book by Nicholas Sparks called Three Weeks With My Brother. It's a nonfiction story about an around-the-world trip he took with his older brother. The trip itself is mostly just a backdrop for him to reminisce and tell of his life. A compelling story of both dysfunction and relationships. It left me with a clearer understanding of just how lacking the relationships within my own family have been; not just myself but each and every one of us.

I remember years ago when Tammy and I bought Derek Webb's album Mockingbird. I was put off by it because for a Christian artist he seemed to not be in support of our efforts in the Middle East. How could a good Christian person not be for war and stuff? I shelved it. I rediscovered it last summer while uploading music to my MacBook.

On second thought, Derek had it right all along.

Derek Webb, King and a Kingdom

who's your brother, who's your sister
you just walked passed him
I think you missed her
as we're all migrating to the place where our father lives
'cause we married into a family of immigrants

my first allegiance is not to a flag, a country, or a man
my first allegiance is not to democracy or blood
it's to a king and a kingdom

there are two great lies that I’ve heard:
“the day you eat of the fruit of that tree, you will not surely die”
and that Jesus Christ was a white, middle-class republican
and if you wanna be saved you have to learn to be like Him

but nothing unifies like a common enemy
and we’ve got one, sure as hell
but he may be living in your house
he may be raising up your kids
he may be sleeping with your wife
oh no, he may not look like you think

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