Wednesday, December 10

Christmas Letter

James and I have written our first ever Christmas letter. We've decided to go paperless so as to save a tree or two.

It can be found here.

Merry Christmas!

Friday, November 28

Here goes...

I am going to wrap this complaint in something I am thankful for. I am thankful that this is the last Christmas of my undergrad degree. I am thankful that I have only one semester left, and that soon this will be over.
But, for now...
I hate paper writing!
mmmm...not completely true. I hate writing on things that I am not passionate about.
I have two papers to write right due Tuesday, one due Thursday. The Thursday one is incredibly exciting, life giving, even. I feel so energized as I sift through my material and put things together. I think it's the first assignment in my entire undergrad career that I have truly enjoyed.
The only problem is, between now and working on that, I should really finish (start) the other one which is totally uninspiring. It's to be written in first-person, in character, based on a mock negotiation I participated in last week regarding the Caledonia land claim. So, it's this weird mix of research and in character opinion and just....gah. A frustrating class in general.
And, I think I might have Seasonal Affective Disorder. Or I'm just seriously avoiding this schoolwork, but, I have just been a big blob the past few days, and it's not a good thing. I am feeling so unproductive and paralyzed, and then getting frustrated with myself for being unproductive, and it's just a ridiculous cycle. I was supposed to get groceries this morning and then hunker down to get writing, and it took me until 2:00 this afternoon to get my errands done, then home and everything put away, then lunch, then...well, now.
So, I still have a lot of writing to do. And I promised my dog (well, myself really, on his behalf) that we would walk today, and all I want to do is curl up in bed. Gah.

Friday, November 7

Psalm 23

"The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want." Ps 23:1

"I shall not want." Is that a fact? A certainty based on the truth that the LORD is my shepherd?

But I still want...

Perhaps it is a determination - "I shall NOT want!" - I won't allow myself? I will trust despite wanting?

But I still want...

Want what?

Perhaps I am not yet being shepherded. Perhaps, what I want is to know in my experience the Lord as my shepherd.
Or, perhaps, I do not understand just how significant it is that the Lord is my shepherd. Perhaps, if I realized the extent of his love, the vastness of his provision, I would be able to rest, to not want.

So. What does it really mean? The LORD is my shepherd...?


- Yahweh, the creator of the universe, the provider of the garden...the ram...the exodus...the manna...the lamb of God.

Yes. That Lord


This is his very nature! He says "I AM"; "I will be who I will be." This sentence could be just as powerful if it stopped there - The LORD is.

But it doesn't. It goes on. The LORD is my...

My. Me. A personal God.

The LORD is my...

shepherd - one who leads, feeds, shelters protects.

The LORD is my shepherd!

I shall not want.
So. There are a million-and-one things I could fill this box with right now. I shall try to condense, and pick things that may be relevant or interesting to the rest of the world.
So - car-free experiment. It went pretty well. Other than going to class in Waterloo, I think I only used the car twice. The first time was to bring dinner to friends in Burlington who had just had a BABY! :-D And I think that's a good enough excuse. The second was to go to *cough*costco*cough*. Which may not be as good. But, here's my thing: Yes, big box = bad. I understand the issues around it. I also understand that 4 litres of milk at Costco is $3.95, as opposed to $5.47 at my neighbourhood No Frills. And my deoderant is cheaper. and...and...ya, I dunno. I love the idea of buying everything from nice little local shops, but, the student budget is going to continue buying milk from Costco. Next time I'll try to take the bus.

Random-crazy-event of the week.
Yesterday, Charlie did his usual thing when the mailman came: he went nuts. (As I said, this is usual). He runs to the door, barks like mad, and jumps up to see out the window. Unusual: yesterday he actually broke the window when he jumped up. I am glad I am not my mailman (and am feeling incredibly AWFUL that his happened), and am going to put a nice country-style mailbox on a post at the end of my porch to protect my gracious and forgiving mailman from future events resulting in shards of glass flying in many directions. Did I mention there was lots of glass? And my dog involved? Yeah, as well as a trip to the vet, 4 stitches under anesthetic, and a hefty vet bill. Oh, yeah, and did I mention that I have a large hole in my door? Apparently that is not energy efficient. Or cheap to fix. Joy.

Speaking of joy...I have been absolutely loving hosting a Growth Group (Bible study, home church, whatever you want to call it) from our church. We have been meeting to study Ephesians on Monday nights, and it has been lovely. It's really great to be learning from a variety of people who all have different life experience and insight. I have also been learning about meditation, from Richard Foster's book Celebration of Discipline and a related study guide. It's great.
So, this morning I was spending some time with Psalm 23. Well, the first verse of Psalm 23.
"The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not want."
Here's some of the things that came out of that time:
You know what? I think I'll make this a separate post. I don't want it to get lost at the bottom of crazy ramblings.

Sunday, November 2


So, my computer just up and died.
And I have a presentation tomorrow.
And all of the stuff I need for the presentation is on the computer.
I can't even ad lib it, because the reading it is based on was on reserve in the library, so I only have my notes...on my computer.
And I could come up with all kinds of other interesting and intelligent things this afternoon.
Except that I'm working from 3-11, which means that I have to go in about a half an hour.
And seeing as I need to leave the house at 7:15 tomorrow to get to my class, I would like to go to bed when I get home from work tonight.
Oh, our technology dependent lives. When will I learn to back up my work...?

Monday, October 27

An Act of Citizenship?

So, I'm taking an Ecological Citizenship class this semester. Today we were talking about public acts of citizenship, specifically biking. So, I made a resolution not to use my car this week, except to travel to my class in Waterloo tomorrow afternoon.
When I got home this afternoon (I even avoided the temptation to do extra errands on the way home - I figured, if I'm gonna do it, might as well go all the way) I headed out for my first bike adventure. I needed to pick up something for Charlie from our vet clinic, which is about 3km away, and that seemed like a good start.
So, I got my jacket and helmet, found the keys for my bike lock, and headed out to the shed. Grabbed my bike, slipped out to the back alley, and off I went. The way there was rather uneventful, although I got pretty warm pretty quick, despite it being a cool windy day. Got to the vet clinic, locked my bike to the railing, slipped in with my reddish face and wind blown hair. Asked for the vial of medication I was there for, which of course came in a box bigger than I was expecting (I hadn't brought a backpack figuring it would be small enough to fit in my pocket). Folded up the 8.5' x 11' receipt, put my helmet back on, and out I walked. Get outside, shove the box in my jacket and hope it won't slip out, jam my mittens in my pockets because I don't seem to need them anymore. As I was trying to unlock my bike, my lock broke. The wire stuff just came out of the plastic lock connector thing as I was trying to remove the end that was SUPPOSED to come out. So, I'm standing there holding the two ends of my lock, trying to decide what to do with them. Can it be fixed? Maybe, but not likely. There's no garbage can around anyway, so, I wrap it up and stuff it in my hood, figuring I'll throw it out when I find a garbage can.
On the road again. Way home was smooth sailing. I finally find a garbage can, slow down, grab the lock from my hood, and plan on cruising by and dropping the lock in, but it turns out the only opening is facing away from the road. So I recoil the lock, and decide to hang it off one of my handle bars (easier than being choked by my jacket). On I cruise, finally found a garbage can that I could toss it in, and then carried on uninhibited.
Got home, bike back in shed, about a half hour later. Works for me, seeing as it probably wouldn't have been much shorter with the car, and I needed some exercise anyway.
So, things I learned today that I would need to do if I am going to make biking a regular thing:
- lighter windbreaker jacket needed - my lined one was way too hot once I got going.
- I need a new lock
- Some sort of storage things would be good. Only so many things will fit inside my jacket (and it's kind of distracting trying to make sure they don't fall out)
- A rear view mirror would be good. It's kind of disconcerting having to cross 4 lanes of one-way traffic to make a left-hand turn looking over your shoulder the whole time.

Perhaps these things could be purchased in lieu of gas money this week. We shall see...

Tuesday, October 21


I bought a new devotional book yesterday - "Spiritual Classics: Selected Readings on the Twelve Spiritual Disciplines", by Renovare, eds Foster and Griffin. It looks fantastic!
The book has 4 readings on each of the spiritual disciplines, meant to be read one per week over the course of a year. I'm really looking forward to it.
The first discipline is meditation, and the first reading is by Thomas More (of Utopia fame). It's pretty meaty - I thought I'd share it.

A Godly Meditation - Thomas More

Give me thy grace, good Lord,
To set the world at nought,
To set my mind fast upon thee,
And not to hang upon the blast of men's mouths.
To be content to be solitary,
Not to long for worldly company,
Little and little utterly to cast off the world,
And rid my mind of all the business thereof.
Not to long to hear of any worldly things,
but that the hearing of worldly phantasies may be to me displeasant.
Gladly to be thinking of God,
Piteously to call for his help,
To lean unto the comfort of God,
Busily to labour to love him.
To know mine own vilety and wretchedness,
To humble and meeken myself under the mighty hand of God,
To bewail my sins passed,
For the purging of them, patiently to suffer adversity.
Gladly to bear my purgatory here,
To be joyful of tribulations,
To walk the narrow way that leadeth to life.
To bear the cross with Christ,
To have the last thing in remembrance,
To have ever afore mine eye my death that is ever at hand,
To make death no stranger to me,
To foresee and consider the everlasting fire of hell,
To pray for pardon before the judge come.
To have continually in mind the passion that
Christ suffered for me,
For his benefits uncessantly to give him thanks.
To buy the time again that I before have lost.
To abstain from vain confabulations,
To eschew light foolish mirth and gladness,
Recreations not necessary to cut off.
Of worldly substance, friends, liberty, life and all, to set the loss at right nought,
for the winning of Christ
To think my most enemies my best friends,
For the brethren of Joseph could never have dne him so much good with their love and favour
as they did him with their malice and hatred.
These minds are more to be desired of every man, than all the treasure of all the princes and
kings, Christian and heathen, were it gathered and laid together all upon one heap.

God always seem to know exactly what we need. Yesterday I had spent too much time dwelling on some pain from a past rejection, and even though I was praying about it and trying to set it aside, it kept coming up, to the point that I was almost in tears as I was driving to class yesterday. In our Bible study last night, we were looking at Ephesians 1, and I was just reminded that I was chosen in Christ before the foundation of the world (v 4) - what an encouragement! And so much more important than not being chosen by people on earth. That added to this reading this morning served as good reminders - "not to hang upon the blast of men's mouths./To be content to be solitary,/Not to long for worldly company."

Saturday, October 4

Where is simplicity?

I continually struggle with trying to fit all of the things into my day (and life) that are important. There are days I wonder if it's even possible. I'm not so sure it is - not without significantly reducing what qualifies as important. The problem is, I'm not sure what can be cut from the list. Today is a perfect example. I worked until 11 last night, so, by the time I got home and in to bed, it was pretty late, and I don' t function well without sleep. Add to that that it's Saturday, the day James and I are both home in the morning and able to relax together, I didn't get up until about 9, which I think is good. So, sleep, and time to relax with husband, both on the important list. Ate breakfast with James, tidied up from breakfast, that brings me to ten. Eating and clean house, both on the important list. So, now I have approx 4.5 hours before I go to work at 3:00 (work, or income, is on the important list). I also have a small paper (5ish pages) to write, that I won't have time to do on Sunday, and could easily take up all of that time before work. So I sit down to get some writing done, and then, by noon, I am hungry. As previously established, food, important. Also, good food isimportant, I think. So, by the time I cook myself a healthy meal, eat it unrushed, and clean up (which I haven't done yet), I have not a ton of time left before going to work, not a ton of work done on my paper, and have totally left out of this day exercise (important), time in prayer and reading my bible (important), reading the paper (important, maybe less so, but important still).
So, based on that, the important list includes (in the order listed, not necessarily in order of importance):
rest - 8 hrs
time with husband - 2 hrs
healthy food - 2 hrs
clean living space - 1 hr
work/income - 8 hrs
schoolwork - 4 hrs
exercise - 1 hr (plus hygiene, 1 hr)
devotion - 1 hr
global/local awareness - 1 hr

So, that is more than 24 hrs. I think that the lesson is to not try to do schoolwork on income work days. That makes the equation work. This was a useful exercise. So the question now is, do I relegate the schoolwork to tomorrow (when I'm participating in corporate worship - important, babysitting my niece and nephew - important, spending time with friends enjoying art - important, and trying to include the daily importants like healthy food and exercise)? I think yes.
I'm learning more and more as I get closer and closer to the end of school, that the important part of school is learning, not receiving marks. So, I'm learning a lot as I prepare this paper. And I know I will finish it, and that I will do a decent job. But it might not be as great as it could be. And the fact of the matter is, I don't care anymore.
I'm going for a walk while I have the chance before work....actually, maybe I'll read my Bible, I don't have to shower after that :P
Oh, and here's a pic for today. I didn't actually take this today, as James has the camera, but, here it is anyway.

Thursday, October 2

Rainy Day People

This was taken in the entrance way of my friends' new house - a mere 3 blocks away! I tromped over there in the rain this evening to help with some of the pre-move-in cleaning. Heck, if rubber boots aren't for days like these, why have 'em?

Wednesday, October 1


I can hardly believe that this is the first of October! What a beautiful day! This vine has been slowly growing across our porch railings all summer, and we're just now starting to enjoy regular flowers.

Tuesday, September 30

A pic a day?

I know a lot of people do this, and I also know that I'm not good at keeping up with daily posting things, but, I thought, what the heck, doesn't hurt to try. So, I'm gonna try for the next little while to take and post one picture a day, of pretty much anything. So, here's today's. It's a grey rainy morning, and this corner is the perfect place to spend it. I left my school book that I was supposed to read for this afternoon's class in the car, so it left with James today, and suddenly I had some extra time. So I grabbed my Bible, the cat came and curled up in my lap, Charlie came and sat at my feet, and I just rested in God's presence for a long time. It was a blessing!

Friday, July 11

My Camp Summer

Hi Everyone!

It's been awhile since I've done the online thing. I am at camp for the summer, and haven't been able to spend much time on a computer (and the computer that is available to staff is ANCIENT, and internet pretty slow, so, it takes some serious determination to do internetty things that aren't vital). But anyway, I thought I would share what I'm doing this summer, and give you my address in case you want to send me some love.

I am at Ontario Pioneer Camp ( for the summer. It's been great thus far. My role is to coordinate the babysitters who care for the children of volunteers that are too young to be a part of regular camp programming. This group is basically 11-15, mostly girls, and a lot of fun! We spend the evenings together, do a few Bible studies a week, and just hang out. It's totally different than any of my other camp roles in the past, and it's a fun change.

Here are some things that you can pray for while I am here:

- Pray for James and I, as we are apart all summer. That our visits can be good, even though they will be infrequent and short.
- Pray for me as I guide these girls, that I would have wisdom in our discussions, and that I would be able to share God's love with them.
- Pray for my girls, as they are surrounded by God's creation and his community, that this would impact them and help them too mature spiritually.
- Pray for my finances, as this is not a paid position. There is a donation program in place, called summer missions, for people to help support this ministry. If you would like to make a tax-deductible donation to help me in my work here this summer, please ask me for more info on how to do that!

Here's my address if you feel like sending me some mail!

Rachel Wallace
Ontario Pioneer Camp - Adventure Camp
942 Clearwater Lake Rd
RR#2 Port Sydney, ON
P0B 1L0

Have a great summer!

Thursday, June 19

Whole Lotta Random

I just put together some BEAUTIFUL hanging baskets and they are making me very happy. It's nice to have a night at home, after a day of work, and not be at school or running errands or doing homework. Doesn't happen very often and I am thoroughly enjoying it. And my pretty new baskets. I think I'll take a picture of them to add to this. Nope, I won't, 'cause I left our camera at my parents'. Oops! Well, trust me, they're pretty. Orange and blue and green and pretty.

And now I'm going to go outside with my Bible and journal and chill with God for a bit. I've been horrible at nourishing my spirit lately, and I'm starting to see the negative results of that. I've often been scheduled to work when I would normally be at church or Bible study, so my organized times of worship and learning have been cut out, and because I have been undisciplined while trying to manage (poorly) school and work, personal worship and learning have been non-existent. James and I had a really good (long and tearful) talk the other night. He mentioned that I was grumpy, and I just started to spill my frustrations about not being able to keep up with everything, and not having enough time to do what I needed to let alone things I wanted to, and that I was feeling pressure to keep our home and yard perfect. James said something really wise. He said

"At some point we need to stop trying to make things perfect and recognize that they are good, and be content with that."

And so, my house doesn't look perfect right now. My nails are a mess and could use some attention. My dog could use a walk. But. *I* need to spend time with my creator, to get myself in line with who he desires me to be. Because, as I read recently "When prayer fades out, power fades out" (E. Stanley Jones), and, if I am going to have the power to contribute to any of the things I mentioned above being good, I'd better go pray.

Oh yeah! And...


And THAT makes me reallyreallyreally happy.

Saturday, June 14

Biting of more than one can chew... something I seem to often do.

I'm not sure why I decided to take a spring course. It just hasn't been working very well with working and wedding and stuffing. And I've been trying all week to write a paper that was technically due last week, and have been failing miserably. And so now I've cancelled work for the day to finish this stinkin' thing, and it just has to finish, no ifs, ands or buts!

And my arms are itchy from my plant allergy which won't go away.

And my house is messy from my cleaning allergy which won't go away.

And my paper's not getting finished because of my self-discipline I should probably get going.

Sunday, June 8

*sigh of contentment*

My blessings are many. I am sitting in my comfortable little living room, sleeping dog nearby, fan bringing in some outside air, enjoying a few minutes of peace and quiet before I head into a busy week, after a fantastic, but busy weekend. Let me tell you about it...

My sister got married yesterday! It was a great wedding. The day was beautiful, the people were beautiful (especially Hilary, as expected), the venue was beautiful, the speeches were heartfelt, the dancing was funfunfun. Altogether, not much more you could ask for. The only fiasco was that Hilary's hairdresser seemed to have forgotten what they did the week before at the test run, and Hilary came home hating her hair, took it out, and completely re did it. She ended up looking great, but in the meantime, things were a little stressful.

So. About dancing being fun. I had a FANTASTIC time at the dance, which is rather unusual for me. I've figured out why I had so much fun. I didn't have a headache!!! That may not sound like a big deal, but anyone who knows me well knows I have had chronic headache issues for a good 10 years, which has made me sensitive to the slightest noise, and usually, loud music makes me sore and grumpy, and a bit of a party pooper. Not this time. I discovered acupuncture about 2 months ago, and my headaches have been much less frequent, and I am so grateful. I had a blast last night. Also, country boys know how to give you a good time. Those at the wedding that fall into that category were gentlemen, and knew how to have fun, and dance, and made everyone else around them have fun too. (My husband is not offended by this, he doesn't enjoy dancing, and I think he was somewhat relieved that there were other people around to keep me entertained. He enjoyed the outdoor patio and some good conversations).

Today was a nice family day. James and I spent the night at my parents', had breakfast for them, and then had a potluck with family friends and Hilary and Maclean in the evening. And watched the crazy tornado/thunderstorm weather together! It was nutso! And really neat.

So, this week, I have to get a paper finished for my summer course (which thankfully ends this week). I was crazy to think I could work, do school, and be a supportive sister all at the same time. I'm glad that the course is almost done, and that the intense aspect of sister-support is over. I'm also in the midst of waiting to hear about what I hope will be my summer (and beyond) employment, and trying not to stress out too much about the limbo phase. Trying to keep some other options on the back burner too, 'cause I really don't think I could handle the whole summer at the greenhouse. I find it difficult to go to work when it's meaningless to me and I don't have much stake in what goes on there. Plus, it's exhausting, and I am noticing a lot of aches and pains that I would like to not have any more.

Speaking of exhausting...I think it's time for bed! Here's some pics from the weekend :-)

Wednesday, May 14

peacing out

Well. It HAS been awhile! Basically because things have been slightly crazy. I've been working, schooling, and bridesmaiding, and finding it a little difficult to do all those things and have a clean house and clean clothes. sigh.
So. Working. I'm working at a greenhouse, and it's absolutely delightful. I spend my day playing with flowers. They're pretty. It's stress-free, there's no responsibility, and it's colourful and smells good. Kind of makes me sad that the whole Eden thing didn't work out, 'cause I think I'd be ok with my main task being to keep a snazzy garden. It's nice to be there at the beginning of our first summer with a yard and garden, a good place to learn and get ideas. Crappy pay, not that close to home, and taking up a LOT of my time (and, seemingly, every Sunday and Wednesday, which are my church/Bible study days) are the downsides.
Schooling. I'm taking an English course, 19th century British novels. Fast and furious, it's 6 weeks long, 6 hours of class a week, plus 1-2 novels. The first novel was Mansfield Park by Jane Austen, which I have had a ridiculously difficult time getting through despite setting aside a whole day to read it, and getting only 100 pages done. It's kind of slow. I'm hoping to finish it today, and then read almost all of Oliver Twist tomorrow. Yiba.
Bridesmaiding (and other family obligations). Yeppers, Hil's wedding is in...3ish weeks?! Something like that . There have been lots of showers to go to, which have been fun, but taken up a lot of the days that I'm not working. Add to that mother's day, and a 50th anniversary celebration for my grandparents, and a lot of my "spare" time is taken up...
Which makes it difficult to get my reading done, and keep our house in some semblance of order, which is kind of stressing me out. Thus I called in "unwell" work today...I just couldn't do it. I came home last night after 8 hours of working, three hours of class, and 2 hours of driving to and from class, and walked in the door to a crazy mess, and almost started to cry.
So. I have spent a couple hours tidying up the yard and cutting the grass. And now I am going to clean the house top to bottom, and then I will readreadread. And hopefully, by the end of tomorrow, all that needs to be done will be done, and I will be ok.

I will be.

Monday, April 28

A Paradoxical Day

Today I slept in. I didn't get out of bed 'till 9. It was lovely. Then I had a nice quiet, slow morning with God, my Bible, notebook, and cat. It was so good; I hadn't done that in far too long.

And, in the afternoon, I bought a costco membership. And shopped at Costco. And $400 later, I'm not sure how I feel about it. I didn't buy anything frivolous, just stocked up on some food and bathroom stuff that we will use anyway, and I'm sure it's a cheaper way to buy that stuff, but it just doesn't seem to line up with some of my other priorities about doing things local, and slowly, and with less packaging.


Saturday, April 26

really freaking mad

I don't swear very often. But I am really angry right now, and profanities are really the only words I can think of that communicate how I'm feeling. Basically, I'd say, this is really sh**ty, and I feel like I'm f***ed. And I'm understanding the verse in James 4:13-15 That says
"Now listen, you who say, 'Today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city, spend a year there, carry on business and make money.' Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow...Instead, you ought to say, 'If it is the Lord's will, we will live and do this or that.'"

Many of you will know I've been "saying" I am going to Prague this July to study. My school program requires an international exchange of some sort, and I was planning on doing two courses at an institution in Prague, which would fulfill this requirement, and mean I only have three courses to take in the fall before I graduate.

I just got an email from the director saying they have chosen not to run the program this year. A good reminder that I "do not even know what will happen tomorrow."

This has all sorts of potential ramifications on how I complete my degree, when I graduate, how heavy my course load is in the fall, etc, etc. Not to mention that my summer job is only guaranteed until the end of June.

So, I'm pretty bummed about that. Not the greatest news to receive a few hours before writing an exam.

But, as I was reminded recently in the cheesy words of a line from the Sound of Music, "When God closes a door he always opens a window." Just yesterday my current employer posted a job for a summer student position in their corporate office, which could be a good opportunity for me, as they are in the midst of developing a global operations arm, and I will need a job after I graduate with my global studies degree...see the connection? Maybe this is all a good thing.

Ok. So. I need to get myself ready for this exam.

Tuesday, April 22

Savouring the Slowness

*sigh of contentment*

It has been so nice to not have school or work demands this week, the first time in ages that has happened. My school year job ended last Friday, and my spring greenhouse job begins this Friday. I have one more exam that I'll need to spend a bit of time prepping for, but for the most part, this week is a holiday, and for that I am very glad!

Mom and I went to my aunt and uncle's house on Saturday night to join them for their Passover celebration, which I really enjoyed. I think often as Christians we overlook some of the important aspects of our faith heritage, and Passover is such a fantastic time of remembering God's powerful act on behalf of his people, the Israelites, and the way it looks forward to the coming of our Messiah. The exciting part of this year's Passover dinner was that, because of my Hebrew studies this year, I was able to participate in the asking of the questions by the youngest in Hebrew! It was slow and choppy, but I got through it. It was nice to be able to go and with Mom and not worry about what I should have been doing for school.

Yesterday I spent some much anticipated (and needed) time in the yard, raking and cleaning up the flower beds. I'm not so sure I'm a gardener though...especially when I have no idea what's in those beds, since this is our first spring here. I haven't a clue what's weed and what's not, and after a (short) while I didn't really want to be weeding anymore. Today I planted pansies in the hanging baskets we bought last fall, something I've been wanting to do since the moment we bought the house. They look pretty!

I have been thoroughly enjoying the slower pace of this week. Today Charlie and I sat on the porch with a coffee, and read my Bible, the newspaper, and just sat and watched my world. It was good. I was also able to make a nice lunch for James and I, and supper for James to take to work. These are small things, but it's so nice to just be able to do them!

Tomorrow we're going to do the big basement clean out. I'm looking forward to it - it's still full of things (many, many, many things) that belonged to the previous owner. It will be nice to have them out, be able to clean the space, and then organize it to store our stuff. Hopefully it's not rainy!

Thursday, April 17

live from the backyard

Yep, that's right. In my backyard there is a bedsheet covered with study materials, one large sun-warmed dog, and one girl warming her feet on the large sun-warmed dog. It is almost impossible to see my computer screen, even on the shady side of my bedsheet, but, I don't care. I am willing to strain if that's what it takes to be outside on this glorious day. And I really wish I could post a picture of me spread out on my tummy typing, with Charlie at my feet, perendicular to me, on his back, head back, mouth hanging open, while I rub his tummy with my feet. Studying Hebrew can't get much better than this. Oh, and I'm wearing sunscreen, as my three hour bikeride on Tuesday without sunscreen taught me a lesson.

This is a blessing.

Wednesday, April 16

getting there!

I always wish I had a catchy title on the tip of my tongue, and try to think of one, and then realize that by the time I do that I could be done writing and on to other worthwhile endeavours, and move on. Like now.
So, yesterday, I did something very exciting and uncharacteristic. I decided I wanted to go see my parents (exciting, but not uncharacteristic). Then decided that it was very foolish with gas prices the way they are to drive James to Burlington for work, drive to Brantford, then go back to Burlington to pick him up. So, I asked him to call his parents to see if they had a free car. No answer. So. I got changed, packed up my stuff, and hopped on my bike. Yep, I biked to Brantford. Which, isn't really THAT big of a deal, it's about 30km, there are much larger feats, but, considering I am not all that fit, and hadn't gone on a bike ride in a long time, it was pretty ambitious. It took my almost three hours, which was slightly embarassing, but, I did it. I'm not even sore today (which means tomorrow could be awful)! It was pretty rewarding.

(sidenote - I think it's really strange that the spellchecker on here picks up Brantford, but Burlington is ok)

Also rewarding - I handed in my last assignments today! And got back an essay that I did really well on. Now I'm only two exams away from freedom. It feels sooooo good.

I kind of wish I had a plan for when I'm done (which is in December). People keep asking me what I want to do when I graduate and I really have no clue. There are lots of things I want to do, but I don't really have a timeline for any of them. There is a dreamjob opening up, but I have no idea if I would be considered for it. I would like to go to seminary and do a master's, but I don't know if I want to do it right away, or if it's financially an option, or if it would work if James was in school at the same time (it is his turn, after all). I would like to complete my RCM piano stuff, and maybe teach music lessons. I would like to have kids. I wouldn't mind maybe working in the field I've been studying in...but I have no idea which of these things are dreams, and which are worth acting on; or, if all of them are worthwhile, in which order I should go about attaining them.

On the seminary topic, I've been kind of worried what would happen if I academically pursued my passion for the Bible. See, I've encountered a few people over the course of my university career who I really respect, who started their academic careers as Christians, and spent time in seminary, and got to the other end of it and couldn't honestly be believers. I really don't want that to happen to me. On the other hand, I know a lot of people, probably more, who have spent a lot of time academically pursuing the study of scripture and have very deep faith, but there's still this lingering worry that if I really look closely at things, I might have to let go of things that are really important to me. Anyway, I was listening to some music while driving to school today, and one of the songs said "The voice of truth tells me a different story; the voice of truth says 'do not be afraid.' The voice of truth says 'this is for my glory.' I will choose to listen and believe the voice of truth." And it just really resonated with me regarding this issue. It was an encouragement.

Well. The sun is shining, my windchimes are clanging, my flowers are budding, my cat is sitting in the window looking rather picturesque, my dog is sitting at my feet. All very good.
On the other hand, my laundry needs folding, my table needs to be cleared of the ridiculous amounts of paper and books covering it, my floor needs vacuuming, and my husband will need feeding. I should probably get to it!

Monday, April 14


My house is a chaotic mess. I have schoolwork to do. I would like to nap. Those things don't mix well.

What I want to know, is how it got to be a chaotic mess. I was working this weekend, 2-10, Saturday and Sunday. Before I went to work on Saturday, I cleaned and tidied the whole house. It was a beautiful and relaxing place to be. And then from Saturday at 2 until, pretty much right now, I have been home for about 20 hours, the majority of which I spent sleeping. Which doesn't answer my question of how my house got this way. Sigh.

I have a really hard time getting assignments done during exam period. It seems like I have all the time in the world to do whatever I want, because my time isn't scheduled. Which leads me to end up spending lots of time doing things that are fun and healthy, but not necessarily productive in the school realm. I have to get two major assignments in for Wednesday, then write an exam on Friday, then I'm done until the next Saturday. It will be really nice to be allllll done, and working more. I'm looking forward to that!

Tuesday, April 8

Oh happy day!

Yesterday was my last day of classes! Hurrah! I came home, finished up some last minute work since the strike at school ended (only to get a snarky email back from the prof saying that the strike was a separate issue from my deadlines :S I hope I don't get docked a ton of marks), and then walked Charlie, had supper with James, and had a whole evening to do whatever I wanted. So I grabbed my rake and got outside. It was SO nice. Especially because I was starting to feel embarrassed about how gross our front patch was looking. So I raked, and I got my hands dirty pulling dead leaves and stuff out of the flower beds, only to find crocuses, daffodils and tulips!!! Yay! The crocuses have started to bloom, the daffodils are almost there. Very exciting.
I still have a fair bit to do for year end projects and exams, which is going to be very tricky, as the sunshine and backyard are seeming pretty seductive...

Friday, April 4

Secular Sacred

That was the title of the massey lectures in 2006 (I think...maybe 2005), by Margaret Sommerville. They were great. I don't remember specifically what she had to say about that, but something along the lines of recognizing the sacred in everyday life - not necessarily things we ordinarily consider sacred in the organized religion sense of the term.

Anyway, I was reading a segment from the Blueprint, a student publication at Laurier, and that phrase - secular sacred - popped into my head. I thought I'd share it.

"Being happy can be hard work. When we make a commitment to social justice, to change, to awareness, it often stems from a simmering anger at the oppression, injustice, and pain that we see all around us. How many of us have read or seen something that opened up our eyes and come away feeling overwhelmed instead of empowered? How many times have we seen friends open their own eyes, only to shut them even tighter a moment later? Is it wrong to empathize like this? Of course not. Is it productive? Not in the long term.
Anger is strong. Hate is stronger. Embracing them as a motivation for social change is easy, and it's seductive. I've sat in many, many rooms being dominated by whoever had the biggest chip on their shoulder about an issue. More than once, I've done the dominating. It certainly gets things done, but it also lights a fire that burns people out incredibly quickly. This is no foundation for sustainable change. Continuous sadness destroys more than it saves. We certainly do our movements no favours by talking about guilt without talking about hope.
Buddha made famous a truism about human life - that the only things we can predict at the moment of birth are suffering and death. What does this mean? Perhaps that sorrow will find us, but we must go looking for joy. Thankfully, it's not hard to find. Indeed, I'd argue that it's impossible to miss. Look around for just one moment at the world we wake up to. It's filled with more beauty, more inspiration, more harmony than any of us can possibly wrap our minds around. By all rights, tears of elation should greatly outnumber tears of frustration.
Laugh. Sing. Smile. Learn. Struggle. Find your joy wherever you can. We must not be afraid of admitting that sometimes, progress actually gets made. When we go out into the world to try and change it, we try to give a voice to the voiceless. Making that a voice of hatred does them all a disservice. There's lots to do - let it be done with joy."

Josh Smyth, Editor-in-Chief, Blueprint Magazine

Thursday, April 3

Counting my blessings

I'm having a thankful day today. I'm thankful for the sunshine, and that it's getting warm. I'm thankful for my house, and that I had the time to clean it today. I'm thankful for the farmer's market, and that I am healthy and was able to walk there for my food today. I'm thankful for my job, and that I had money to buy food and flowers. God is so good to us.

also...I'm thankful that there are only 2 school days left and a few little things to wrap up. VERY thankful!

I am also really thankful this week for the Christian community that I am a part of. I have been really blessed this week by spending time talking and praying with people who really share God's heart for the poor and marginalized, and want to figure out what it looks like to respond to those issues. I am just so excited and encouraged after I have spent time with these people.

God is good.

Monday, March 31

One More Week...

The end is in sight! I just sat down with my April calendar and jotted in all my deadlines and exams. After Wednesday life is going to become a WHOLE lot more manageable! Hurray! One more big paper due Wednesday, then a couple little things, then exams. I actually usually really enjoy exam period - I don't mind writing exams, and the amount of unscheduled time I have is fantastic.

I'm supposed to be at school today. I got up early, got all ready, made a lunch, etc etc etc. We even took Charlie to James' parents because Monday's are long days and we have something at church tonight. I got James to work, then turned around and went home instead of going to school. I was just feeling really crappy - headache, stomach ache, tired. That plus the amount of work I have to get done in the next couple of days made going home a far more attractive option. So here I am...I think it was a good choice. It's weird not having Charlie here though! So quiet!

James is feeling better - thank God! He was on the couch for 4 days, in pretty rough shape. I don't remember him ever being sick for that long. Thankfully he's back at work today. We had a nice Sunday together yesterday, which is a rare thing. I didn't have to go to work, and I chose to leave schoolwork aside for the day. We had a good morning at church - Robin preached a really good sermon on the Parable of the Tenants in Mark 12. He taught on how the listener's at the time would have heard and interpreted Jesus' teaching according to their cultural context and knowledge of the Hebrew scriptures - it was interesting to hear it with that extra information - and realize that Jesus was making some pretty strong judgements against the Jewish teachers and leaders. Very good. You can listen to it at
After church we had lunch together, then took Charlie down to the bayfront and walked for awhile. We met James' dad and his cousin Paul who is here visiting for the week. Then came home and had a nap :)
The evening was spent at church celebrating the ordination of Robin Ellis, our pastor. It was a good night of worship, teaching, and celebrating Robin's call.
We got home and just chatted and prayed for the coming week - I think we're going to try to make that a habit on Sunday evenings. It's a good way to connect with each other and a ground our week in prayer...speaking of prayer, I got a new Henri Nouwen book "The Only Necessary Thing" on the weekend. It's made up of excerpts on prayer taken from his many books over the years. I'm looking forward to it.

So, after our prayer time, at like, 11pm, I decided I wanted to change the furniture. As in, completely switch two rooms. So, our living room is now where our dining room was, and the dining table and hutch moved into the old living room. This all in anticipation of MY PIANO COMING ON WEDNESDAY! Yes indeed - after almost 10 months of not living with my piano, it's coming from my parents' house this week. I am very happy about that!

Okay. Time to stop writing so I can start writing....

Tuesday, March 25

Two more weeks....

I love how I created this blog for "big thinks" and it's really just become my ramblings on mundane everyday things. Oh well. School takes up all my big think energy lately. I don't really feel like processing more big thinks when I'm paper writing.

So. Two more weeks. One and a half more papers. One course in limbo because of a strike. Almost there.

I was all gung-ho to get down to work today. I went to bed SUPER early last night, slept in, had a nice breakfast and leisurely morning with James, and was gonna sit down and just charge through stuff. I sat down. I opened books. My gung-ho left. Now I'm struggling to focus. I'm trying to finish this little paper, and it shouldn't take long, but it's for the striking prof, and I don't even know if it's going to amount to anything, so I don't have much determination to finish it. Perhaps I should move on to other stuff for now.

I had a GREAT weekend! But it was so wasn't a work weekend, but I was just as tired at the end as I would've been if I had worked. Friday we did church in the morning, lunch with James' family, and then I had to work in the evening, 3-11. Saturday I went to the One of a Kind Show with Roz, Jen and Emily, which was fantastic. So many neat things! I bought a leather satchel/purse/bag thing - big enough to hold a lunch and some books for my travels, and goes across my body so no one can steal it. I like it.

Sunday, we were at church super early for worship team practice, then our service (which was fantastic!). Lunch with the Wallaces, then straight to dinner at Tracy and Danielle's, which was also really nice. I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with everyone. But by the time I got home I was sooo tired. Not to mention I had to prepare for a presentation at school the next day. By the end of Monday I was zonked! Thus the early bed time.

Mmmm....yep. that's really all. I have to analyze a medieval manuscript and make an argument on how many scribes I think wrote it. Not really looking forward to that.

Here I gooooooo

Thursday, March 20

for Dad, who doesn't have facebook...

...but likes to check out the occasional online picture.

I'll add some to this lovely, schoolwork avoidance post.

I'm kinda torn about the schoolwork, being as the professor is on strike (details at )...what does that mean for my deadlines? Not exactly sure. Nevertheless, the paper was due yesterday, so I'm gonna get it in today, but I don't really know how that works. And only ONE MORE PAPER this term! WOOHOO!!! Excellent news.

So, I had a great day yesterday - I went "home" to see my fam, and my friend Tracy who is taking a mini-vacation at my parents' house. I successfully got my homework started...then was offered a pedicure at the spa with Tracy, then was offered a delightful roast beef dinner (which was definitely worth ending Lent early for), then, as I was about to finish my work/and or leave, Hilary asked if Tracy and I wanted to play Scrabble...which of course I did. She kicked our arses. I was supposed to leave in time to buy dog food...which of course I didn't, because I ended up talking with mom and Tracy for awhile after that...James called me when he got home at 10:45 and was like "Where ARE you? Where's the dog food? Has Charlie eaten?" I'm obviously a bad person for leaving him that long - but he did get fed. And I bought a honken (I feel like that adjective needs to come back into common lingo) huge bag today. As well as a new leash, so he won't kill my hands when I'm trying to correct him for not "walking nice".

So, today a co-worker and friend, Erine came over with her baby for a visit, which was nice. Also nice is the fact that it pushed me to clean, and now I am enjoying my delightful clean and tidy abode. I just need some fresh flowers to top it off (3 gerbers for the kitchen, and some tulips for the dining room...). I like flowers.

Speaking of flowers, I had an interview at a greenhouse today for a job for May-June. I think it went well, he seemed to like me, and he was thrilled that I'm leaving at the end of June, 'cause that's when their peak season ends and they need to start letting their seasonal people go anyway. Hopefully that works out - it sounds like it will fit well with with my weekend job at the group home, and the course I'm going to be taking. And I really like the idea of being around flowers all day - it's gorgeous in there!

So, then I went to buy dog food and leash, then stopped at Wendy's for a quick lunch, happened to see Steve Clark, a guy from Bible study there, which was kind of random. We chatted for a bit...then came home, and I have been successfully wasting mounds of time looking at websites trying to figure out if I have to do my schoolwork when the prof's on strike, and posting pictures on facebook, and blogging.

Mmmm....I think I should probably finish my paper now. Here's a few of the pics I posted today.

Tuesday, March 18

holy socks

So, lately, almost EVERY pair of socks I put on has a hole on the big toe of my right foot. It's kind of strange...even new ones! Perhaps I am some sort of anatomical anomaly. Whatever it is, it's annoying.

This week is MUCH better than last one. Last week was just nuts - I was a mess. But I am feeling normal again, and for that I am VERY grateful. Thanks to those who were praying - and to James who was ridiculously patient with me falling apart over...well, everything from French toast to medieval English presentations.

Today is a reading day, and tomorrow a writing day, since I have a response paper due on this book tomorrow. Provided our faculty don't strike, since their bargaining deadline is midnight tonight. In that case, I really have no idea what's happening - which is kind of frustrating. The faculty have not addressed the "what if?'s" at I don't know what will happen to the semester. But we can just hope that they can resolve the issue in negotiations today.

It's raining :-D

not snowing!

This is very good. I am very happy about that. I have never been so anti-winter. But this winter has been nuts! I don't even remember what it's like to wear sandals. Or be hot. I vaguely remember reading on the porch, and am looking forward to putting my rocking chair back out there...come, spring!

And I hope our basement doesn't leak (so far so good - but this is our first real thaw, plus the rain...hopefully we don't discover we have a leaky basement).

Speaking of warm weather - what's Prague like in July? Anyone? I have no idea! But I'm REALLY excited about going! The website for the program I'm attending is if you want to check out what I'll be doing.

Ok, so, off I go to read. Happy day!

Tuesday, March 11


So, apparently I only blog when homework is sending me over the edge...which it is right now. I have now idea how to technologically complete this assignment, which I need to do for my presentation tomorrow, and I'm getting really frustrated. That combined with the fact that I am rather alone, which tends to make me kooky after awhile anyway, is not good right now. I have no idea how to get this done, and I have no one to talk to and I am just really sad and frustrated! Grr!

All of this seems to be happening on the backdrop of some sort of winter blahs or something. I am just generally angry/sad/teary/tired-feeling(despite getting lots of sleep) in the last couple of days. Just winter combined with school stress? Hopefully. Or, as my mother said, "Could it be some kind of mood disorder?" They tend to run in the family. I'm rather opposed to that option. Either way, it's getting in the way of me getting my work done. But I can't seem to get my work done because I just don't know how! ARG!

Um....yeah. That's all for now.

Wednesday, February 27

Help, please, smart people?

Ok, so, I'm writing this massive paper in 3 days which is really dumb but I can't change my previous time management decisions. I'm going to post my progresses on here in hopes that some of you fine, learned, thinking people will give me some constructive criticism as I go. My topic is a little abstract and I want to make sure that I am actually communicating effectively what I am trying to say.

so...PLEASE, gimme some feed back. Even if it's as simple as "Yes, that makes sense." if it does. If it doesn't, could you help me pinpoint the areas that could use some tweaking? THANK YOU!

Language is the primary tool for communication among members of the human race. The words available within a linguistic system that serve to represent thoughts and allow them to be transmitted can either limit or expand the ways one is able to conceive of and express ideas, which subsequently shapes the way one speaks, and ultimately how one acts. From that frame of reference, this paper will seek to analyze the linguistic discourse that provides a framework for the discussion and carrying-out of humanitarian activities. We will begin with a discussion of linguistic theory in an attempt to discover what type of relationship exists between words and ideas. Based on those conclusions, we will analyze a number of phrases and terms related to humanitarian activity, beginning with “humanitarian” itself, and then look at the historical conception of the “right to intervene” followed by the modern phrase of preference, the “responsibility to protect”. Close analysis of these phrases will seek to uncover the assumptions that they may carry, and to critique the potential limitations of such language. Finally, this paper will seek to look at the relationship between thought, word and action, by looking how at the current discourse around the responsibility to protect is helping or hindering the cause of humanitarianism in the modern world.

Tuesday, February 5

Mardi Gras

mmmm. pancakes. definitely started the day with some of those. I was wondering what the doctrinal foundations of "fat Tuesday" are...I actually have no idea. The pancakes were yummy anyway.
Fat Tuesday of course means tomorrow is Ash Wednesday, and the beginning of Lent. I've decided this year to give up meat, which I think will be really challenging (which is of course the point). I was discussing it with one of my co-workers on the weekend, and one of the guys we support looked at me like I was crazy, pointed to the sausage on my plate, and said "Unh-unh! God MADE that for you!" It was very funny. He didn't want to hear my explanation that I give up something good in an effort to understand what it was like for Christ to give up heaven to come to earth, and then to give up his life to pay the ultimate sacrifice for us.
I feel like I have tons of stuff that i could reflect on today - lots has happened in the past couple of weeks!

I am learning that I have so much, and I need to be thankful for it, as well as a good steward of it. This springs from the awe of a random woman who came in to our home to use the phone at how much we have. It was good for me to see our house through her eyes, especially when it's so easy for me to want more.

I am being reminded of how much I need the transforming power of the Holy Spirit in my life if I am going to be a witness to those around me who aren't walking with Christ. As I've spent some time lately with friends who know what I believe, and grew up hearing the same messages as I did, I've been reminded that unless my life shows the fruit of the Spirit, there's not much else I have that can show them the value of my faith. This in light of the fact that I have been told a number of times in the past few weeks to be kind. My tongue is not all that tame. Sigh.

I am struggling with how to express my dissent with some of the things that fellow believers do and say without tearing down the body. How do I line up "they'll know we are Christians by our love" with my frustration (and anger?) over how Christianity has been represented to my friends who aren't believers. Tough.

I was surprised by myself yesterday. I opened up my computer to do some work in a pretty busy area of campus yesterday, and was suddenly very aware of the piece of tape I have on the top of my screen that says "BY CHRIST & FOR CHRIST". It's there to remind me when school is getting tough and driving me crazy that it is by Christ that I am able to even have access to an education, a brain to think with, and the will power to stick to school, and that the purpose of it all is for Christ - that I can glorify him with the job opportunities that a degree will make possible. Anyway, sitting there, and then again later in class, I was really aware of this sticker on my computer, slightly embarrassed, and almost took it off. I was surprised by my gut reaction.

So. Those are some of my musings over the past little while.
Enjoy your steaks.

Tuesday, January 29

this is me, pulling out my hair

metaphorically, of course.
I'm supposed to be writing an online test today for my correspondance course. So, of course, the website this test is on is completely unaccessible right now, taking like, 10 minutes (that's not an exaggeration) for each page to load. Which made my studying and last minute prep this morning take forever, and is now taking forever for me to actually load the test review and test, which is taking up too much time of my day. I have other things to do...but it's kind of hard to do them in between while I wait for pages to load, and so I sit. I'm getting really good at computer pinball.
Really, I haven't much else to say. I was just really bored while waiting for this page to load, and figured I might come up with something interesting...not yet.

Saturday, January 26

Darkness, Quiet and Warmth...

...the three things desired by my husband who came home from work puking. And so, I sit in my completely dark house (no, seriously - there is one tealight flickering in the window - James actually had sunglasses on while sitting in the darkened living room), with nothing to do, as most things I would like to do require light or make noise. I should've convinced him to sleep in the bedroom.
Anyway. So, here I sit with my laptop, as it is a relatively quiet and light-free way of entertaining myself. And, after reading countless other people's blogs, I thought "hmmm...I have one of those". Then I thought "but a lot of these people post really intelligent and interesting and insightful and inspiring things, and I don't have much that is intelligent/interesting/insightful/inspiring to say" but then decided to do it anyway.
So. I'm cold. Unlike James, I am not piled under a duvet. That's not related.
I had a rather productive day of schoolwork. Which is letting me do nothing this evening completely guilt-free. Which is nice. Because Sabbath is important, and really, techinically begins at sundown the night before. Also related to the productive and good day is that my NEW COUCH finally arrived! Yes, that's right, Rachel's Christmas-birthday couch is now in her living room. Which is lovely.
Although, I do kind of have mixed feelings about it. It's really sleek and shiny and new-looking. It changes the whole feel of the living room. It just doesn't have that humble, cottagey feeling to the same extent. And...I still haven't quite figured out how to guiltlessly enjoy luxuries. I'm sure there are ways that my couch money could've been spent that would have done a lot more than make me feel happy and comfortable in my living room. At the same time, I don't think it's wrong to be happy and comfortable in my living room (although, I was able to be happy and comfortable before the new couch - it just didn't look as nice). Anyway. I think as long as there are inequalities in this world it is right to be uncomfortable with luxury. Which also means I need to do something to address the inequalities. Which is also hard.
I'm taking a course on social inequality this semester. It's funny how I can think I am all for equality and the things that are necessary to achieve it, and then I read about a theorist that thinks that as a step toward equality we should end the inheritance of wealth and property and all of a sudden I'm like "WHAT!? That's ludicrous! I'm entitled to my families' stuff...." Which I'm probably not. It was good for me to read that and discover my reaction. Oh stuff. Why do we want more,more,more,more,more....?
Hmm. A song I heard this week comes to mind "With Jesus our only possession/then giving becomes our delight/It's hard to imagine the freedom we find/From the things we leave behind"
Which I can totally attest to from some of my personal experiences.
But it doesn't change the fact that I'm excited about my new couch.

Thursday, January 10

All things new

I am so pumped for this semester. I just looked over all of the syllabi for my courses, plotted out due dates and deadlines on my calendar, and it looks pretty sweet! I only have THREE PAPERS!!! I can hardly believe it! And they're all spaced out quite well. Add that to the fact that I only need to be in Waterloo 3 days a week, and I really like my courses and profs, and it's looking like a pretty sweet semester. Thank God! I couldn't take another one like last fall.

So, school is looking good. Our house is ALSO looking good -finally! We got the living room/dining room done over the holidays. It's so nice to have a finished space to relax and work in! I'm quite excited. It should make getting school work done a LOT easier, not being in chaos. We're having a housewarming party on Saturday. It'll be good to get some people in here!

I like fresh starts. I am resolving to strive for balance this year. No specific resolutions, I'm just going to try to care for myself. So, discipline in my work, protecting my rest, spending time with God, having fun, enough exercise, healthy food, but nothing in extreme. That's the goal.

Here's some pics of the house (and the pets, 'cause they're so cute).
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