Friday, April 30, 2010

Get Movin'

hehe...was in the mood for some jumping around. enjoy! :)

The Big Day

well...after all my spouting about the "ick" of politics, i actually experienced more positives than i thought i would today. while i greatly despise the game-playing, perhaps it is too easy for me to assume and/or judge than i like to admit. i saw some very honorable things today...and generally good-hearted people. i still have hopes that the "big-hearted" change the world...i think i just was able to see some more of them in the political arena that i had originally thought.

Thursday, April 29, 2010


well, tough stuff today. a funeral for a former student...a 16-year-old boy. such things just shouldn't happen.

i think what is also hard for me is watching what unchecked dysfunction chews up and spits out children. i did, however, have something powerful sink into my heart tonight. god doesn't let go of kids. even when they move outside of your reach, he continues to pursue and work his plan in their lives. he uses other people and other circumstances. he's good like that. faithful! in the midst of the great suffering that so many are experiencing, it is so good to see god's fingerprints...proving presence and hope.

if you think of it, please pray for the family and friends of this young man. comfort and peace.

also, please pray for the young lady that was driving the vehicle. she's being treated so badly as the scapegoat for people's pain. so sad.

A Political Day

So tomorrow is my "big day" of Republican-ism. HAHA! It's also the last day that I have to do delegate business...which I'm excited for as my mailbox and voicemail box are being pounded with information and pitches. The chocolates, however, were not an inconvenience...those can keep coming. ;)

All of this has prompted much thought...and much frustration. A friend said that he defined liberalism as an attempt to "enforce through law what should come out of the heart". I would add that conservatism sometimes resembles the complete enforce through laws that nothing has to come out of the heart. More than anything it has convinced me that I want to be a part of a group of people that actually want to bring solutions. Not bigger government...bigger hearts. Those people who are deep and real with love in a powerfully practical way. I'm frustrated to say that I question whether the political realm is the place for that anymore. It seems to be more about power...on all sides. Regardless, I'm thinking that politics isn't the space for me to get much work done. I believe it is in the realm of "hearts alive" that the answers lie...and that's where I'm headed.

I'm definitely voting more conservatively in the upcoming election so there can be more "checks and balances". Having a little more balance keeps everyone more honest.

I have to say, though, that I admire the people who keep on fighting in the weird world of the Dems and Reps. There are some respectable individuals involved there...and I think they bring a great deal of hope for that arena. I wish them well! :)  

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Some Enchanted Evening

my kiddos and i tried to sing this today in class...ya, we're odd that way. we couldn't remember the words, so i looked it up after they left. ahhh, such a good one. :)

Monday, April 26, 2010

Crazy Robin is Baaaaaack!

Seriously...I think I have a possessed robin in my yard. When I first moved into this house, there was a crazed robin "situation". It would sit on the edge of my deck and then attack its own reflection on my living room window. Bizarre!!! After that first year (of waking up at 5am when this daily saga would begin..), I didn't have any issue with the bird. I figured it finally knocked itself in the head one too many times.


I'm not sure of the typical lifespan of said bird, but this one is back!!! It's got crazed eyes, and I think it actually is watching my every move inside the house!!! And is attacking itself in the same window starting at 5am!!!

So, here's my weird thought based on the demonic bird...I think we do the same thing with people. (Come on...everyone knows I'm weird with the thoughts on stuff...). Seriously!!...I think we sometimes attack our own reflections in others. All the while we think we are disliking or disagreeing with something in him or her when really we are going after an issue that belongs to us. We really miss it because we don't see that one of the gifts of relationship is that we bring out the worst in each it can be dealt the best can shine. I just think we need to check to see if it's actually a mirror that they are unknowingly holding up in front of us whenever an issue arises. At minimum it's worth the question...

I plan to let the crazy robin know this as soon as possible...frankly, because it is scaring itself "sh##-less" (if you know what I'm saying) all over my deck and the front window...issues, issues, issues. ;)


i feel so bad for the people that lost their children in the car accident this weekend. a great deal of suffering for those left behind...and i'm sure a lot of questions too. my prayer is that they will experience the reality that this song speaks of...that when everything falls, they'll know they are held by god.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sad News Today

There was a car accident in the middle of the night last night involving some local teens. It looks like alcohol was involved resulting in the deaths of 4 teens and 2 adults. I clicked on the link to the article by Star Tribune and was shocked to see the name of a former student of mine. :( So sad. Would you join me in praying for his family? Also, pray for some of my teachers who really tried to invest in him when he was so young. Thanks so much!

Federal Foods...

i just finished watching the show "food revolution" where a chef named jamie oliver tries to get a public school district to serve better food. the stuff that is served before his arrival???...oh my gosh, it's TERRIBLE! so the story proceeds with him having to go through so many hoops to get everyone on board definitely NOT an easy task. things end up coming together enough for him to leave for a while. the sad news is that when he comes back to check on things, there has been some backsliding. the reason???...the federal government regulations on food actually make "healthier" next to impossible.

please tell me...why is it that the pebble in the shoe of progress is usually our federal government? and also...why then do we keep expecting them to bring progress when over and over and over again it ends in more drama? is that the definition of insanity????

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Political AHHHH!

This is the stuff that I strongly dislike about politics. It happens all the time regardless of the party loyalties, but it remains a sad snapshot of our lack of faith in the redemption of humanity...especially after the word "decades" is used in a description of the offense. Eek! I actually am interested in the other candidate in this party, but regardless of the "side", I just think people should be treated better. It would seem that the original author of the letter was concerned that the Democrats would take the past situation and run with it to ensure that their candidate took the election. Clearly that's possible considering that games are played on all sides, but surely the other possibility exists...especially when the indiscretions weren't a secret in the first place...that people could move beyond all that and choose a leader based on the solutions they bring to our state's issues. Maybe I'm an idealistic moron, but I like to think such things are possible. I think I'm going to write Emmer a letter even though I'm an insignificant peon. I'll encourage him and ask him, if elected, to keep being "a good boy in office" (like my daddio says). :)

Kare11 article

Friday, April 23, 2010

Please Pray

just shooting out a quick one...if you could join me in praying for a friend, i'd much appreciate it. there are some potentially serious health concerns, and the "worst case" could really be a bad deal. i know that god heals, so please join me in this corporate request. thanks! :)

Gardening High!!

it's terrible!!! an "i love it!" way. ;) i literally get the "shakes" when spring hits. if i walk into a store with a gardening section, i about lose all sense of reason and frugality. there are so many beautiful plants and so many amazing colors and shades and heights and widths and potentials. ahhhhhhh!!!! what am i going to do?? i need a logical brain to accompany me so i don't go crazy...because...i...can't...hold...on...much...longer!!!!! :)

Ugandan Necklaces

i follow this sweet lady's blog. i've referred to her before, but she is a 20-yr-old who moved to uganda to serve. she's now a mother of something like 13 ugandan orphans! i love her because she is a great example of living out extravagant love. her entire life makes me wonder what the world would be like if the church actually loved like this rather than fed "self" so much. anyway, her latest blog includes a link to a website where we can purchase a necklace made by a group of women that she helps. this way they don't have to do things to earn money that are beneath their dignity.

katie's blog

Thursday, April 22, 2010


uff da! it's been a bad week for the pride!! yes, i wrestle with that bad boy on occasion (which i'm sure isn't a shocker to many...hehe). i don't always notice it when it rears its ugly head, but for some reason i've been VERY aware of it this week. the good news is that i've actually been so bothered by it. i met with a friend last night and decided to just lay it out on the table...and in a loving way got a 2x4 to the head. usually i maintain an inner pride parade (perhaps more visible than i sometimes realize), but something happened this week where i actually stepped through my propriety-oriented "checks and balances" and let the pride display itself LOUDLY. unbelievably, it still took another 2 days for me to actually feel bad about it. when i did connect with what was really going on, i...felt...awful...ok, with a hint of justification lingering. ;) of course, now i have to actually make it right (sucks!). you know what is so good though?...god, as my loving dad, actually lets me experience some whacks from time to time and, just like isaiah, have the "coal touch my lips" to purify me.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Plumb: In My Arms

This came up on pandora today. The original version is slower, but the techno version was appealing for some reason. :) I love it because it's a great reminder of our position in Christ's arms no matter what comes.

Chapel Funny

I forgot to blog this last week and remembered it in chapel today. We have a school-wide worship service for 45 minutes once a week. Last week was BreakOut Groups...this is where we split into multi-grade small groups and do a little lesson together. It's a great mentoring opportunity for the older kids, and the young ones LOVE to hang out with anyone older. Well, I used a demonstration to introduce the lesson before we split up. We are doing a series on "When Jesus Comes for Dinner", and that week discussed the wedding in Cana where Jesus turned water into wine. The writer of the curriculum recommends a demo of pouring water into another pitcher that secretly has koolaid powder in the bottom of it...thus, pouring out water that becomes "wine" once it enters the other pitcher. Well, the demo went really well...too well. Some of my little kiddos got these profoundly amazed looks on their faces. Yes, they thought they were witnessing the miracle ALL OVER AGAIN! HAHA! Seeing their reactions, I had to quickly let them know that I was "playing a trick on them" and that I wasn't...Jesus. Note to self...remember the literal nature of K-2nd graders!!! *sigh*

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Tony Dungy...Being Second

Tony Dungy..."I am Second". A great video about a great lesson and approach to life.

Homeschool Manual

I seriously need to write a manual about homeschooling...for homeschoolers! Ya, I know I could be stepping on some toes here, but my frustration isn't so much directed to the parents that actually do a great job of it. It's regarding the others. I have to say that I've found that there really isn't an "average" homeschool situation. There are those that do an awesome job...and there are those that think they are (but in reality are sucking it up). It's the latter group that gives all of homeschooling a really bad reputation.

1) Make your kids do the timed skill tests and on-the-spot problem-solving exercises. Hands down, my slowest processors are former homeschool students. They've been given a ton of "time" at home to work out math problems, etc. and therefore can't process even basic functions quickly.

2) Teach them to work independently. I know that seems ironic, but most of the students that stall out when there's an academic challenge are former homeschool students. They assume someone should hold their hand through it rather than cheer them on as they attempt, maybe fail, but ultimately learn.

3) Teach them the value of time. Make them follow a schedule and meet deadlines (and have consequences for late work). Teach them to be on time by being on time yourself. Many of my former homeschoolers have no concept of punctuality and are instead quite passive when it comes to respecting the time of others.

4) Make them be responsible for their possessions. I'd say to even make them care for their academic supplies. In a school setting, they are classicaly unprepared...often assuming that we provide paper, pencils, etc. and that we keep track of their books!

5) Expose them to people!! Dare I say...even expose them to people who are different than you. So, so many of my former homeschool kids have absolutely no idea how to relate to people, and they are all too often very sure that their worldview is far superior to anyone else. Sadly, they only come off as elitist and from a different planet all together. The other benefit of this exposure is that parents can actually see their kids next to others and if their eyes are open can perhaps notice some key struggles. I've seen homeschool kids who have some pretty serious obsessive or depression issues...gosh, even some deception issues...but due to a "small world" or even pride (?), the parents just cannot acknowledge it. Therefore, the kiddos continue into adulthood with some serious and unaddressed issues.

6) And they get older, please do more than a few hours of school work and the rest of the day for free time. Some of my former homeschoolers that have come from that arrangement spent their free time involved in things that actually exposed them to the very things that parents thought they were sheltering them from. Some of my more morally seared students have come from that arrangement. It was like their parents assumed that their children would never be tempted and therefore provided no boundaries. So sad really because these kids have been changed...  So how about some work opportunities to encourage work ethic? How about community service to encourage responsibility and compassion? How about fine arts activities to encourage creativity? How about tutoring opportunities to share (and solidify) their learning? How about job-shadowing or field experiences?

Ok...that's my venting session about that. Ya, I get that some of these problems exist in more arenas than "homeschooling", but boy there are some trends sometimes...

Monday, April 19, 2010

Testing Woes

i'm starting to hear the voices...the week of standardized testing always irritates me a bit. for one, all the people that can't go with the "flexibility flow" quickly reveal themselves. i still don't understand the "jump off a cliff" quotient that some can have over #2 pencils, revised schedules, etc. heh?? this year, though, i have a new challenge. maybe two challenges is more appropriate. i have two very determined young men...who are making my hair fall out. one is set in a plan to do the testing "his way". no lie..he told me that after i caught him doing entirely different tests than the rest. it gets better though...since the first redirection, he's attempted 3 more times!!! what the heck??? the other one has it in his head that he can write in the test booklets and just take time out of classes later to transfer all his answers to the bubble sheet. how many times have i now clarified this???...ya, that'd be 4!!! any wonder why the "voices" are back on the table??? hehe.

Hummingbird Pictures

a friend sent me this link this morning. amazing! it came with these reminders...that an egg is the size of a tictac and the nest opening is about the size of a quarter. oh!...keep clicking "next page" at the end of each screen.


Sunday, April 18, 2010

My Political Thinkings...

ok, so here's the deal. all of this political involvement has me doing some thinking. so much of our caucus discussions are about how much the government isn't the answer, but there is very little discussion of what the answers actually are. perhaps solutions are discussed somewhere else, but consistent with my belief in "government by the people" i'd like to see some answers offered from the "regular joe's" from time to time. my cousin john always says, "instead of being the squeaky wheel, bring up problems when you have some ideas about solutions", and that's the direction in which i want to go. it's the lazy way to just's the courageous way to actually be a part of the answer. i wonder if that's where political involvement and i part directions.

i see it on both sides of the political spectrum...lots of talk but few ideas that actually solve anything. while i agree with the conservative conviction that government isn't the answer, i want to help find the actual solutions. and where do i think those solutions lie??...with humanity at it's best. and honestly...i'd like the church to stop being "a cocaine snorting spiritual community that seeks its own pleasure, its own preference, and its own comfort" (erwin mcmanus) and become the extravagant lovers that they are meant to be. i want to be a part of the community of love that feeds all of the hungry, heals the sick, and on and on and on. i believe that's totally possible when people agree with their destiny instead of living beneath their potential...

so...solution number one...

Summer Beach Volleyball!!

my bro-in-law rommel just called to ask me to play beach volleyball on his team this summer! AHHHHHH!!...i'd LOVE that!! i'm pretty sure i've lost all ability to play anymore, but i still have my mouth on me (yes, competition occasionally awakens the inner beast..shh!). ;) i'm so excited!! i better grow a muscle or two soon! uh-oh!

Another Family Blessing

it was my niece's (the infamous "H") blessing service tonight. my family does a bar mitzvah of sorts for our kiddos when they reach a certain age. we design a celebration of who god has made them to be and present various meaningful gifts. some significant blessings are spoken, and we pray for them as they enter adulthood. H's theme was "super heroes". she loves them!! our shared secret is that we (she and i) believe that people really are super heroes if they want to be. anyway, she did so well...and we all bawled!!! *sigh*...i need to rehydrate! :)

Secret Garden Phase 1

here's a pic of the completion of phase 1 of my secret garden! it was SO much work, but it feels equally good to be one step closer to my dream. :) now for the layout and planting!!

thanks dad!

Delegate Blues..., i'm a delegate for the republican state convention. never, EVER thought i'd get into this stuff...HAHA! it was actually a mix of trying to meet a guy and a sneaky uncle who likes to nominate me for stuff!!! as it turned out, i ended up becoming a delegate for the district and state! it's been very interesting to watch the process. it has also given me a lot to consider...and yes, i don't always agree. one of the consequences of becoming a delegate, though, is that candidates and their campaign teams try to contact me CONSTANTLY!!! i've had so many phone calls and mailers...and an all-time new surprise...visits to my house to give me chocolates! it's not always a welcomed thing due to my privacy passion, but chocolate is chocolate so... :)

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Young At Heart

i think this might be one of my new life theme songs. :)

Secret Garden "Wow"

i had the BEST day with my dad. :) i came home from bible study this morning to work on my garden with my dad. i was so surprised to also find my niece "h" there too! we set the posts, hung the fencing and attached the arbor to the entrance. oh! dad decided that i needed a better looking arbor, so he brought a different one!! it does look so much better! :)

another cool thing that happened pertained to the walking path that i'm going to put in there. i don't have any paver bricks, so i've been considering a temporary path plan. i commented to "h" that i didn't have any paver stones or anything like that yet, but i'd just have to wait until the perfect "free" answer arose. well later on, as she and i were stomping around in the woods behind my house, i found a flat rock walking path that the previous owner had laid in anticipation of her own garden!!!! a free answer...and a beautiful one! so my next project...well, one of to relocate those rocks. you know what??...i think god was excitedly waiting for me to stumble onto his next surprise. he's hot like that!

so 20 slivers later...a great day!!...a ton of work done! (i'll post some pics soon!)

Friday, April 16, 2010

Brownie Husband

HAHA! sorry, i couldn't resist.

brownie husband

Boy, Does Prayer Help!

I had a few people that I was really concerned about last night. Anxious, really. I finally just decided that I needed to pray. Do you ever get the feeling that your prayer is not just for the purposes of making you feel better but is actually needed for the accomplishment of something? That's how I felt.

The cool thing is that God has really released me into a visual kind of praying. I'm not just saying words. I'm picturing the whole thing. The cool thing is that it's not "imagination" in the sense of being fake. It's the "real" of creative expression. I'm getting to place my loved ones in His hands...put myself there too...and just sit with God there.

You know what???...I already saw answers today...and knew so much more peace because of spending time with Him over the matters.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Sometimes my kids really frustrate me...

it seems like it's been a couple of weeks of discipline craziness! not that it's remotely like some of the yucky stuff i've had to deal with in my educational career. no, it's more that i'm tired...and sick and tired. i seriously have some kiddos that really wrestle with honesty. maybe i should say that i really wrestle with their dishonesty...they all too often seem pretty content with it. the outlook from where i stand seems not too peachy. goodness knows i've lost a few to that road, and many of those are still walking fools. the nice thing is that i actually deal with a couple of great parents/guardians...but boy, some of the others???...i think those parents would love to stay in denial. i guess there are just some seasons where i know i have to be a brick wall and at the same time feel like i'm pretty much losing the game.

Waiting for the Good Gift

i've asked god 'why?' about so many things that i've wanted. this is a great video about the ways we often operate in the midst of our desires.



i stumbled on this today and was really challenged by it. i love his quote that says, "it is a dangerous thing when our world becomes the world." so true of our culture in general...oh what we could give...

Nooma - Rich

Monday, April 12, 2010

Our Next Rep???...Hope so!

introducing chip cravaack! we just voted for him to be our republican candidate to go up against oberstar (who has been in office for waayyyyyy too long). meeting him in person...well, all i can say is...he's a hottie! ;) ok, i can say more than that. hehe! he's pretty awesome all around. package deal???...i think "YES!" so, spread the word!!

Cravaack for Congress

Excel Formulas

today, i had the wonderful fortune of helping with an excel spreadsheet. formulas!! *sigh* i love them!!! so what did i do???...went home and tinkered with all my personal flowcharts...yes, i admit that i have some. :) it's just that i love seeing all the totals change when i modify the data in various cells...all on it's own!!! i believe excel=magic!!

ya, i'm definitely a nerd! :)

Secret Garden!!!

Guess what I get to work on this weekend??? Oh my's my secret garden. Granted, it's not technically a secret, but it's going to be my special walled-in haven (or heaven). Over time I've been accumulating all kinds of fun free stuff. I have pretty much an entire wall...hehe...perhaps some wood needed for the gaps. I have some lattice for climbing plants. I have an arbour too! Last summer I picked up a great and gaudy bird bath. It's actually going to become a planter instead of a mosquito breeder. ;) I have a great stick chair too...I got that on a roadside!!! I have a ton of plants that are primed for splitting...very few plant purchases necessary!!! And the most special thing??? Dad is helping me.

Good times!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Getting Hit On At Political Events

well...i went to the district meeting yesterday. it was pretty interesting for the most part, except that one of the emmer campaigners was out to drive me insane. i'm guessing he was getting to know me in his book...sigh. i debated telling him that i wasn't actually for his candidate and thought that telling him might get him to leave me alone. turns out, i just added fuel...he now had a reason to keep coming back to "convince" me otherwise. wink. wink.


i'm hoping i can be a little bit more incognito at the state convention. it would help if the republican party had more...tall i could blend. ;)


yep...i consulted mother google and found that i can make my own mayo from scratch. goooo figure! scientifically, it's really cool to watch all that congealing and such. i admittedly have a "oooo, look at that!" reaction when it comes to the little things. turns out it tastes great too! i must say that i'll never buy helmann's ever again. :)

Friday, April 9, 2010


I'm just NOT one! Sorry! Clearly, we have some tough stuff ahead...paying the piper is on the horizon...but can I just add...THAT'S BEEN ON OUR HORIZON FOR A FREAKIN' LONG TIME! Is it just that our denial doesn't have such convenient reinforcers anymore that people now think it's challenging?? Goodness!

Personally, I can't wait to see the good that comes out of the challenges ahead of us. Entitled America could stand some good lessons...and I plan to be a contributor and NOT a cave-dweller. I'm going to be loved by God and love my neighbor as myself...whatever comes. In fact, I'm going to do it with joy in my heart.

What the Doomsdayers need is a sermon by my Uncle Tim!! "Grieve it...move a good steward of what you have!"


my pastor sent this to me. so true!!!

Thursday, April 8, 2010


ohhhh, edward!!

Erwin McManus!!!

first things first...i LOVE him! *sigh* (ok, maybe not as much as bell, but still he's a close second in my book!)

i had the great fortune of going to see erwin mcmanus today. for those that don't know, he is a pastor of a church in los angeles called mosaic (podcast on itunes and online). it's not rocket science, but his opinions and insights are refreshing! i know that he rocks the boat for some in christendom...but to be honest, that's one of the reasons i enjoy him so much! the freakin' boat needs a-rockin'. ;)

one of the things that stood out to me today as he shared was a validation of a desire i have to not ever live my life just to be in the "christian club". barf! isn't it amazing how many christians just stay in their clubs and expect the "world" to come to them or just stay away from the club entirely?? ick! no, the true desire of my life is to know deep intimacy with christ and just let that life flow out of me as i shine who "sarah" really is. that shine can happen anywhere i "fake" necessary. god lets "me" out more and more every day, and i don't have any desire to be fit into a mold of what a "christian" should look like. no bubble for this girl.

so all of that causes me to think about my life. loving church of course and the WONDERFUL things that are happening there, working in a christian school too and enjoying all of the opportunities i have to encourage real life in my kids, BUT...there's a huge potential to encounter the christianese bubble. the only problem??...i don't fit into the bubble life anymore because of my hottie jesus, so sometimes i feel a little like an least with the bubble people. so, i guess i'm pondering ways to keep on being a non-bubble girl in the midst of the occasional expectations of the bubble people. (wow, that's a lot of 'bubble'...haha!) but hey!!...a good challenge is a great thing!

Cell Phone Blues

one thing that bugs me about the cell phone...the assumptions that go along with it. it's like people now believe that owning one means that a person SHOULD be reachable at all times. umm...gosh, that's not how i do things. so sorry!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

If I was Written...

i stumbled across this amazing piece the other day...and i'm totally in love with it. the composer, edward elgar, wrote an entire composition in honor of his closest friends. it is said that each section is the inner picture of who they were to him displayed in notes. he "wrote" them in song! ohhhh, i would love to be "written" like that. in fact, i wouldn't even mind if it sounded just like the piece that i've attached. enjoy!

( clue what the point of the video is...but i just close my eyes, listen and bawl...hehe!)

Monday, April 5, 2010

My Book

some day i'm going to write a book specifically directed to parents...ok, maybe to a few that are on my mind right now. :) AHHHH!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

Women's Bible Study

a few of my 30-something friends and i have been doing a women's bible study at church. our first study was of the eldredge book "journey of desire", which i love so much! for our next study, though, we wanted to dig into the bible. so we are!! welcome to 'song of solomon' 101!!! it's freaking awesome! we all bring our various translations, and we raid the church library for commentaries and bible dictionaries. AND...we bring our own experiences with the hottie god to the table too. i'm enjoying it soooooo much!

Friday, April 2, 2010

"How to Tame your Dragon"

i LOVED this movie!!! it reminded me of the book 'wild at heart' which was written for and about men. it has a great message for everyone though, and i highly recommend it!!!

fyi...someday i'm going to touch the clouds on a dragon of my own! :)


My Heart for Jack Shephard

I'm in love. Oh my gosh...and I'm insane. HAHA! I absolutely love one of the main characters on the show "Lost". Jack Shephard is my hero. Now, all I have to do is find him in real Jack. Commencing the "swoon"...