Friday, November 30, 2007

Someone Shoot Me Now

In the spirit of today's Friday Five, I have to add that The Polar Express is the most tedious movie I have ever seen.
We've been watching it for an hour and a half now and it feels like at least 4 hours have passed.
The animation is creepy- the eyes on the people look dead.
And the whole point of the movie is "Christmas is in your heart," expressed, of course, by Tom Hank's version of Santa Claus. (Speaking of creepy...)
Oh, please, no.... now we have band Aerosmith as elves.....
I think I hear the baby Jesus crying....because he's creeped out and bored.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Friday Five: The Comeback Edition

I'm feeling a little better, so I thought I'd quickly do this Friday Five:

WillSmama writes: Parishioners pushing for carols before you digested your turkey?

Organist refusing to play Advent hymns because he/she already has them planned for Lessons & Carols?

Find yourself reading Luke and thinking of a variety of ways to tell Linus where to stick it? (Lights please.)



Then this quick and easy Friday Five is for you! And for those of you with a more positive attitude, have no fear. I am sure more sacred and reverent Friday Fives will follow.

Please tell us your least favorite/most annoying seasonal....

1) dessert/cookie/family food My mother-in-law makes this "Christmas cake," which she can call it that if she wants, but it's a fruitcake. 'nuff said.

2) beverage (seasonal beer, eggnog w/ way too much egg and not enough nog, etc...) Drinks made with crappy, sub-par ingredients. I don't want peppermint flavored or eggnog flavored drinks. Give me the real deal if I'm gonna indulge!


3) tradition (church, family, other) overgifting by the grandparents


4) decoration Those ginormous snowglobe things that people put on their lawns. I just want to poke them with a stick. Not that I would, mind you....


5) gift (received or given) Almost anything given to my children by the grandparents. Their goal in holiday gift giving is to buy the most obnoxious toy for the children because they don't have to live with the noise. The worst? Hulk Hands of a couple of years ago.

BONUS: SONG/CD that makes you want to tell the elves where to stick it. Any Christmas song being played on the radio while it is still freakin' November!

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Utterly Uneventful....

the surgery was, anyway. I was home within three hours of being wheeled into the OR- amazing!

I threw-up the pain meds, which was rather painful.

Cutting this short because looking at the computer is making me woozy.

Thanks for your prayers and well-wishes!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Under the Knife

It may be quiet here for a couple of days because I'm finally having my surgery tomorrow morning. I'm getting it done just in time before the really, really good insurance coverage I have through hospice expires.

It's an outpatient procedure, so I should be home in the afternoon. I have ordered from Netflix the seasons of Sex and the City that I've never seen and I plan to just lie on the couch and watch TV. While I'm not looking forward to recovering from surgery, I am looking forward to some peace and quiet!

Later!

Friday, November 23, 2007

Friday Five: The Day After Thanksgiving


Singing Owl at Revgals writes: Ah, the day after Thanksgiving--groan! Fortunately, I love Thanksgiving leftovers.Thanksgiving is the American holiday when the greatest number of people travel somewhere else to celebrate. I am posting this from my son’s home in Minnesota where we are recovering from the food shopping and the preparations and the meal and the clean up. It is difficult to think of anything requiring much energy today, and I am enjoying my sweet baby granddaughter, so I will keep it simple. For those of you not in the USA, I apologize for the nationalistic tone of this Friday Five!


1. Did you go elsewhere for the day, or did you have visitors at your place instead? How was it?

After my son's birthday party the day before, we were very chill yesterday for Thanksgiving. My great-aunt, my only relative in town, came over and spent the day with us. We ate very well and watched movies. Very nice.


2. Main course: If it was the turkey, the whole turkey, and nothing but the turkey, was it prepared in an unusual way? Or did you throw tradition to the winds and do something different?

No turkey for these vegetarians! We had a yummy tofurky. Don't laugh.... it was awesome!

Check out this funny song from SNL a few years ago called "Basted in Blood."


3. Other than the meal, do you have any Thanksgiving customs that you observe every year?

Not really, we just try to make it a day where we enjoy time together.


4. The day after Thanksgiving is considered a major Christmas shopping day by most US retailers. Do you go out bargain hunting and shop ‘till you drop, or do you stay indoors with the blinds closed? Or something in between?

I make it a point to buy absolutely nothing on the day after Thanksgiving.


5. Let the HOLIDAY SEASON commence! When will your Christmas decorations go up?

When I get around to it....

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Decision Made

The session got its act together and is offering me a fair package. Since beginning this process , I have sensed that I am called to serve this church right now. So, I am going to accept it.

Decision made. I'm ready to move forward.

thanks be to God.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Confused

I just got off the phone with the Clerk of Session of the church I thought for sure I was going to serve as interim pastor. When am I going to learn to never think anything is "for sure?"

Well, it turns out that there was some confusion at their Session meeting Thursday night concerning my pay package. There were those present who thought I had said that the figure we were talking about included Board of Pension dues (pension and medical insurance.) When they found out by the others who did not have that misunderstanding that that was not the case, they freaked out a little. So the Session decided to table the discussion until the whole Stewardship committee can meet a week from next Thursday!

I told her that I had another offer and that I could not keep them waiting for so long. Besides, my family needs me employed pronto.

I am so confused. I truly thought I would go to serve this church, as I was not as drawn to the other church. However,I told this other church that I would let them know by Monday and I know that they are clear on the package. In fact, when the man called me to offer the position to me, he repeated twice, "This is not including Board of Pensions dues."

I can't see turning down the solid offer and waiting for the other. Even if I did wait, do I still want to go to this church? Do I not accept either position and wait for a called position? What do we do for money to pay the mortgage?

I am feeling sheer panic right now and need to just calm down. I'm sorry if I'm rambling and making no sense.

Any thoughts out there?

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Invited to Both Dances

Both churches have asked me to serve as their interim pastor, which is great, but I hate having to turn anyone down. I'd rather eat worms.

There really is no question, in my mind, as to which church I feel called to serve. However, my husband leans toward the other because it's a little easier to get to and, he believes, the road is safer. They are offering practically identical pay packages, so no real difference there.

Considering the situation I have found myself in with being laid-off, this truly is an extravagant blessing to be asked to serve by both churches.

Now, I just hope that I will be an effective interim.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Grateful

Just a quick happy......

At Presbytery Council this week, the pastor of one of our churches here in town overheard me talking about my concern in finding a good childcare/pre-school situation after having to leave my daughter's last school due to my no job=no money situation. He said to me, "Call me tomorrow" and left it at that because we had to begin our meeting.

So, I called him and he said that the board of their church's Child Development Center would like to give my daughter a place tuition-free for a couple of months to help us out in this difficult time. I am beyond grateful- this a great program and finding childcare in this town is so hard. (And those of you have been reading my blog for awhile know that childcare is a touchy subject with since last May.)

I am hopeful that our ability to pay the tuition will be sooner rather than later, as I will be hearing back this week from both churches I interviewed with for interim positions. I feel particularly drawn to the one I preached for this past Sunday. (That would be Church "B" from my post the other day.)

I feel a sense of peace at serving as an interim right now. And I will have no intention of bailing after 3 months for a called position! I am beginning to actually trust that the timing will work out just splendidly- for everyone.

It feels good to know that when I do go back to work I won't have to scramble for childcare. And it feels great to know that we have friends and colleagues who care.

God is good.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

25 going on 12

This afternoon I confronted a young, twenty-five year old man today after he drove his Camero like a bat out of hell down our street while my children were playing in our driveway. I knocked on the door of the home he shares with his parents and younger sister. His mom answered the door and invited me in. This was how this young man reacted to my visit:

Me: Jacob, I would like to ask you to please drive more slowly down our street. I have two small children and I need to keep them safe.

Jacob: I appreciate you coming by and all, but now I'm going to hear it from her all night (motions to mother). Thanks a lot.

The conversation went south from there.

I am seriously worried that I will wake up with slashed tires tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Ten Things About Me

Alex tagged me for this meme. I think I may have done this one before, but I will try to think of some new things to share with you all about moi.

1. My left hand is bigger than my right hand, by quite a bit.

2. When I was a teenager, I boycotted Universal Studios for two years because of the movie The Last Temptation of Christ. I had never seen the picture, of course. This stand of mine prompted my mother to declare that I was "moral to a fault." Alas, she was right.

3. I later rented said movie in my early 20's and was ticked that I had given up seeing lots of good movies those couple of years over ....that.

4. I have never gone skinny dipping, but it is a desire of mine to do so before I die. Actually, I've thought about it as a reward for after I lose weight. I don't really want to skinny dip while I'm still fat.

5. I may have mentioned this on my blog before, but in 1996 I ran into George Clooney in Bratislava, Slovakia. I had accidentally wandered onto the set where they were filming The Peacemaker. George just kind of smirked at me and I got the heck out of there! I haven't seen the movie. Is it any good?

6. I went to church by myself for most of my adolescence.

7. I used to love to go cliff diving. Now, not so much.

8. I never dreamed of being a mother. My husband and I had lots of conversations prior to getting married about not being parents because I wanted it to be crystal clear that I didn't think that motherhood was in my future. You may not believe this, but after I said, "I do," I began to have the desire to be a mother.

9. I've been a vegetarian for about 8 years.

10. I'll share with you why I use the pseudonym "Iris." When I was about 3 years old, I used to tell people that my name was Iris. My parents don't know where I heard the name, but I guess I fell in love with it and wanted it to be my name. My mom also tells me that I would answer "Iris" when asked, "What is your name?" However, I would answer with my real name whenever I was asked "Who are you?" So, I knew who I was. But my name was Iris.

I tag PK, LutheranMom, and tngirl

Friday, November 02, 2007

After the Phone Interview

The phone interview went very well. They asked thoughtful questions and laughed easily. It felt good.

The question is: do I want to go there to freeze my tushie off?

Friday Five: Interviews

Mary Laura writes: Songbird just had an interview for a "vague and interesting" possibility, and More Cows than People is doing campus visits for doctoral programs. There always seem to be a few RevGals applying for new positions, and I just got my first call for this year's preliminary interviews for college teaching jobs at the American Academy of Religion meeting in San Diego coming up in a few weeks. It's for my dream job among this year's offerings, and I am flipflopping between excitement and nervousness. So please keep your fingers crossed and say a little prayer for everyone facing such conversations, and share your thoughts on the wonderful world of interviews:

This is a very timely Friday Five for me, as I have a phone interview this afternoon and two face-to-face interviews on Sunday and Monday. So, I'll be reading all of your answers with much interest!

1. What was the most memorable interview you ever had?
The Summer after my Freshman in year in college, my friend who was a nanny needed a substitute for a week and asked me if I would do it. I agreed and my friend arranged for me to meet the family one day before she left. So, I came by at the agreed time for what I thought would be just a quick hello and run down of the kids' schedules, etc. I wasn't expecting when I walked into the living room to find the kids, a girl 9 years old and boy 7 years old, sitting side by side on the couch each with a legal pad and pen ready to "interview me." At first I thought it was cute and I was amused by their very grown-up questions like, "What is the best book you've read in the last year?" I answered all of their questions and was about to ask to what time I should show up on the first day of my friend's absence when the little girl said, "We don't think that you are taking this very seriously. I mean, you dressed in a shorts and a t-shirt for a job interview. We're going to ask if Kristen has any other friends she could ask." It was okay by me. I always hated babysitting!

2. Have you ever been the interviewer rather than the interviewee? If so, are you a tiger, a creampuff, or somewhere in between?
Somewhere in between, I guess. I usually conduct interviews by committee. So, if others on the committee are being tigers, I'll usually be the cream puff. However, if the interviewee comes off as overconfident or pompous, I'll become a tiger.

3. Do phone interviews make you more or less nervous than in-person ones?
Neither less or more nervous. There are several advantages to the phone interview as far as not having to dress up and being able to spread out all the information about the church on my bed to consult during the interview. However, it's often disconcerting to not have the opportunity to read body language. For all I know, people might be rolling their eyes during the entire interview!

4. What was the best advice you ever got to prepare for an interview? How about the worst?
Oh, the absolute best advice I've ever received is "Know when to shut up!" It's very easy to get diarrhea of the mouth and go on and on and on. This is especially helpful advice during phone interviews and on the floor of Presbytery!

I can't think of any bad advice I've received, but I'm sure I've given plenty of bad advice!

5. Do you have any pre-interview rituals that give you confidence?
For a phone interview, I almost always talk in my bedroom away from the rest of the family. The room has to be very tidy or I feel scattered. So, I take time to clean my room and, although they can't see me, I make sure that I am dressed in something besides my pj's or sweat pants.

For in person interviews, I will often take sometime by myself in the hour or so right before to collect myself and pray.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

I love Fall...

... and my digital camera and my crockpot!

Some of you shoe blog,
well, I stew blog!



This is my unbeef stew I made today.
J. made some corn bread.

Yummy, yum, yum!
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