Sunday, December 28, 2008

Compare and Despair

Was just checking my email - finally - and got one of those update letters that sounds like some sort of braggadocious "I'm almost as awesome as Mother Teresa" type deals:

"We're saving the souls of shop-a-holic desperate housewives;
We're rescuing all the dudes living in vans down by the river;
We're hand-quilting baby blankets made from used training pants and burlap coffee sacks and sending them to naked heathens in the tropics;
We're leaving tracts about Jesus in every public bathroom in our city;
In short, we are the wonder-children of our town and our mom has the bumper sticker to prove it!

Well, I am not doing any of that stuff but I did, in my shallow way, add red and blue streaks to my hair. I wonder if that counts as doing a good deed so that my stylist could afford Christmas presents? But seriously, I got depressed for a minute reading the "top 10 good deeds list" in that email. You know how it is - you start thinking that you've got to be a superstar too - next thing you know, you're face-down in a vat of red wine singing UB40 songs.

Then I came to my senses and thought, "Feeling like an inadequate failure in comparison to those guys is stupid. Now I'm going to go look at cupcake blogs and feel happy: Yay! Cupcakes!!
so there."

I might even make some tomorrow and give a couple to a dude who lives in a van down by the river. Maybe I should throw in a bobble-head Jesus for his dashboard and one of those "Christian" t-shirts, like the orange one that says, "Jesus' Pieces".

All I know is that if my cupcakes don't turn out like the pictures in my cookbook I am really going to be pissed.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

Christmas Music: CENSORED!!

Oh boy! It's December and time for the annual slide down into holiday insanity. I am one of those geeks who listens to the all-Christmas-music radio station and I have a few tips as to how to make the holiday season better:

No really, I can't even tell you how much better radio would be without these songs:

* Same Old Lang Syne" by: Dan Fogelberg - You know the one:
"Met my old lover in the grocery store
The snow was falling Christmas Eve
I stole behind her in the frozen foods
And I touched her on the sleeve..."

In my opinion this song should never be played again. It should be given a closed-casket ceremony and laid to eternal rest.

* Absolutely no
Mannheim Steamroller. None. That cheesy synthesizer music belongs in a pink padded cell in the 70's, 80's, 90's and so forth.

* "Where Are You Christmas?"
This song is OK when Cindy Lou Who sings it on the Grinch but when that grown lady sings it (you know who you are, Faith Hill) it's like, "SHUT UP and get some freakin' prozac already, woman!!"

* This is more of a personal preference but can we limit the number of Beach Boys tunes that are being played?

* Don't forget about WHAM!: George Michael belting out "Last Christmas I gave her my heart..." Spare us. Keep a blog instead, dude.

No offense Delilah and John Tesh but I'm just gonna have to change the station when that stuff is being played. I can't afford to up the dosage on my meds so turn that racket down!
Love your show!

Delilah, that is.

John, "qwerty tummy?" For reals?

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Top 10 Reasons to Become a VEGAN

1. No more handling raw meat! YAY!

2. Losing weight. (so I hear!)

3. It can get your blood sugar levels back to normal and reduce high
cholesterol, to mention a few health benefits.

4. You get to try out a whole bunch of yummy new recipes.

5. You get to use all kinds of weird food items that you've never used before:
kombu, mellow miso paste, kudzu, egg replacer, nori, tempeh, amaranth,
shoyu, mochi, tamari paste... oh boy!

6. You get to eat salad and bread for breakfast when you forget to bring your
own darn food when eating out.

7. People admire your dedication and tenacity (secretly they think you are

8. Did I mention the hummus is homemade? More beans?

9. The rest of your family gets food poisoning from bad burritos and you don't.
(if only you could get off barf clean-up duty!)

10. It's subversive. I'm all about that!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Gone for summer vacation -
see ya when the weather gets cold again!!!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Sticks and Stones

Today I was thinking about how Jesus called the religious nutballs some pretty harsh names: brood of vipers, hypocrites, white-washed sepulchers (fancy mausoleums full of smelly rotten corpses; in other words, you look good on the outside but inside you are putrefied). I had to laugh when I thought about the names Jesus called people. He didn't say they were like vipers He said they were vipers. Remember, snakes were associated with e-vil. In modern day SNL speak Jesus might sound like Mike Myers calling someone the dev-il.

All of this got me thinking: we are supposed to be imitators of Christ. So when do we get to start calling people names like He did? Mark Driscoll rips on people who talk about Jesus like He was some lily-livered diaper-wearing pansy. For sure, those pale-skinned blue-eyed Jesus pictures are retarded.

I'm not going anywhere with this train of thought. No "Deep Thoughts" here. Just don't be surprised if I jump up on a chair someday and tell it like it is to a few folks.

So git yer ugly, yella, no-good kiester off my property before I pump yer guts full of lead!!

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Finally the barf-fest is over and the subsequent cough and cold-fest!

For some crazy reason we decided to adopt a stray dog. Of all the oddball breeds he is a Redbone Coonhound like the dogs in Where the Red Fern Grows. He is a friendly and easy going dog but he can't seem to understand that defecation on the carpet is unacceptable. Back to that putrescence word, eh? He also chews through leashes and other stuff in a matter of seconds. I've been working with him on doggie obedience. We are training him with voice commands as well as hand signs. The other night when it was bedtime for the little girls I gave my two-year old the command and hand sign for "lie down". She followed suit. Awesome!! So, in order to make my life less stressful I will be training all three of them the same way. Who says you can't teach little kids new tricks?! Whining? No problem! Do you three want to go out in the kennel/dog run or would you like to play dead? Bored? You can either go play ball or chew on some rawhide. Don't want to relieve yourself in the right place? I suggest that you don't urinate where you sleep. Want to sleep in my bed? No way! It's your bed or the floor! See, it's all about keeping the choices simple.

Now I gotta go replace the Gentle Leader head collar that he chewed up.
I'll try to get a photo of him to post soon. He is very cute even if he is dumber than a box of hair.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Queen of Refuse

This place is brimming in vomit and other forms of nastiness. The washer has been going for days though I am doubtful of its germ warfare capabilities.
Of course I have the dread illness as does everyone else in the house. It really ticks me off because I still have to drag my sorry carcass around the house cleaning up all the ka-ka. It’s like battling the in the Fire Swamp.

Meanwhile, the other adult in the house gets to go back to work in the outer world where he is expected neither to wipe people’s butts nor clean the privy after they are done using it. All this while I am trying to cram in a self-directed study of Early Childhood Education, Phonics, Classical Education & How to Keep the Home Organized While Teaching at Home. There have been moments when I’ve thought that what I’m doing at home as a mother is not important. (Shame on me!) Now that I am finally beginning to catch my stride I challenge anyone to get their regular job done and manage children at the same time. (Unless they are a teacher) I don’t have a personal assistant. I don’t have a bookkeeper or a management team. I don’t even have a team of volunteers. I do have some help with house cleaning and that was a step in the right direction.

Sometimes you just need an epic tale to lift your spirits and remind you that there are worse things out there than copious amounts of puke and potty chairs filled with stinky goo. There’s no shortage of worse things out there as we all know.

So I am finding inspiration from an old classic: The Princess Bride.

Nestled among its clever script are such gems as:

“Life is pain. Anyone who says otherwise is selling something.”

“Get some rest. After all, if you don’t have your health, you don’t have anything.”

“So Bow to her… Bow to the queen of slime, the queen of rubbish, the queen of putrescence…”

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Voting, Schmoting: Who to Vote For & Why

Some of need a little help when it comes to voting. For instance, many people do not have time to listen to all the political speeches or to do research on every candidate. Further, how can we be sure that what we are reading is accurate? We know that every candidate has speech-writers and spin-doctors. This makes it very difficult to separate truth from fiction. So, I've decided to help everyone out by telling you who I am voting for and why. If you want to vote for this person, I guarantee that if he gets into office he will not mess things up any more than they already are. In fact, I feel quite certain that things will improve under his direction.

What I want in a leader is: Integrity, Wisdom, Maturity, Experience, Compassion, Love, Strength & Humor. (sounds like an ad for e-harmony) While this is not an exhaustive list, these are the most important qualities.

I happen to know two men who fit the bill. Either one of them will do a cracker-jack job of running this country which is more than I can say for any of the current candidates. These men possess all of the above character traits as individuals. If one could be President, and the other Vice President, that would be even better. Between the two of them, one has served our country in the military; the other has vast experience overseas and is fluent in several languages. One has run several successful businesses of his own. The other has served in high-ranking positions within the organization that he works under. Both have spent time teaching and counseling. Both men are respected within their communities and have put in hours of volunteer work with people of all ages. Both men are straightforward and honest. Both are adept at managing conflict and mediation. Both are highly intelligent, self-motivated, hard-working individuals.

In short, I believe that we should all vote for these two men. You can write it in on your ballot:


Saturday, March 22, 2008


My kid hit her teacher a couple days ago.
Smacked her.

I'm not gonna lie to you - I was fairly dismayed when the "Children's Director" pulled me aside to inform me of my child's misdeed. (I go to a non denominational Bible study where they have a children's program)

Now, I have not gone out of my way to give people the whole low-down on being a
pastor's wife - and I think all of you know by now how I feel about that whole issue. So it wouldn't surprise me if someone had a few snarky things to say about the hellions on wheels that PK's (pastor's kids) can be. **I love it! Do you see that?! They are called pastor's kids, not pastor's wives kids! what a delightful discovery just now!**

Well, I've been a goody-two-shoes PK and a hellacious MK (missionary kid) and I can tell you that it only gets worse in proportion to the amount of preachy religious people that a kid has to put up with but doesn't know enough to tune them out. A few of my pals and I took to chain smoking down by the river (literally) although not in a van as in Chris Farley's SNL skit. (Having the van would’ve made all the difference!) We also took to writing heinous poems about hell and suicide. That was some of my very worst writing. How original is the F--- word after its fiftieth time in verse? I know, I know, the angst of it all.

This was not the first time that my child has created a disturbance in her class but it was the first time that she hit someone. Apparently it's "the first time this had ever happened" (that a kid hit a teacher there). I'm wondering if that should go in the scrapbook under "Firsts"?
Since it was a first, the nice director lady asked,
"What do you want us to do?"

You're asking me??

"Enforce some consequences? Like a time-out?" I ventured, uncertain if this was her polite way of saying, "We're not sure we want your kid here."

Spank her in front of the whole class? (That actually happened to me and now I cannot do math as a result)
Smack her back?

So, being the decent parent that I am, I had a good chat with the child, asking her what happened and what she could have done differently and how did she think the teacher felt about being hit and was she ready to apologize? I also mentioned that being mad doesn't give her the right to hurt people or misbehave. She felt badly about it and apologized to the teacher. Later we talked about things some more and she said that she hit the teacher because she didn't want to be there. I informed her that not being there wasn't one of her options and that she was going to have to find a way to make it work. Far be it from me to allow my child to think she can dis authority figures even if I may not agree with their methodology. I was a pathetic people pleaser as a child so I am relieved to have a child who stands up for herself and speaks her mind even though it comes across poorly at the age of 4 3/4. She is no pushover with children or adults and that is a good thing so long as it can be properly channeled.

I told her Dad what happened and he laughed, not surprisingly, since he is the type who cheers for the underdog. He said that he hit his 1st grade teacher.
Only she smacked him back.


Getting away from the Christian bubble is so liberating. I have to say, I hope never to return to said place except for brief visits to those still inside. I don't belong there anymore and every step I've taken to get out has opened up more and more freedom. There are so many things that bubble-dwellers make issues of that simply do not matter outside of the bubble. Now that I am out I find it amazingly depressing how bound up I felt in there and how little interest I had in anyone's life who was "on the outside". I say "depressing" because there are so many who are still stuck in there struggling with the same things that I struggled with. Wow, did I have my head in the sand, to use a well-worn cliche. I have been doing better. I am still struggling on and off with depression but also sensing that it's hold has been progressively lessening. Even now I don't know all of the causes but I think there have been a myriad of factors involved which seems reasonable to me.

Having unrealistic expectations has been one of the causes; both my own and those belonging to others.
When we first jumped into this venture some one who goes to our former church was talking with me and informed me that "being a senior pastor's wife is a lot different than being a high school pastor's wife" (not that this person had been either one, ironically) Anyway, this person's near-lecture seemed to be more about keeping up appearances that about caring for others. Nonetheless, it was like a bitter pill that gets lodged in the throat and did nothing to arm me for what was to come. I allowed myself to fall into a trap of being anxious about those type of things for quite some time after our arrival in our new town: Will people think I'm a good parent even though I scream at my kids sometimes? What if I don't know how to help this person who is in front of me? What if someone I know sees me drinking a glass of wine with dinner? And on and on it went. The truth is, the person who said all that stuff to me is a fearful person who hasn't been able to let go of unrealistic expectations when it comes to "being in leadership". I am a real person with real issues and I'll be danged if I am going to suffer alone in those. At a team meeting I went off about something that is an issue in my life and just being able to admit that I can be a jerk about some things is a good thing for me because I have spent my whole life trying to be good and hiding all my stuff because I thought I was supposed to be this spiritually mature person. I tried to make that happen in my life by following all those asinine how-to steps that people fueling the Christian machine like to pump out. You know, like "Five Steps to Knowing God Better" and other stupid sermon or book titles. How about a sermon titled "Keeping Up Appearances and other Horse s---"?!

I went from pastor's kid to missionary kid and it only went from bad to worse because it seemed like the stakes kept getting higher. Now here I am, a "senior pastor's wife" (gag me, like, totally with that title) and if I can't be authentic than I don't want to be at all. I couldn't take the whole stupid leadership persona any more - it was killing me. I don't have all the answers and there is no one who does. As for being in leadership, we are equally important in the "body". Leaders only exist to help bring continuity to what is going on within the body and to help facilitate spiritual growth. There is nothing special about leaders beyond that. I have been doing well, l and feel more like a real person than I have in years.

Now more than ever I think that delving into one's doubts is the best place to begin when it comes to one's faith. If I don't ask the hard questions then how will my faith ever be called into account? Blind faith seems illogical to me. Even Jesus said to count the cost before choosing to follow Him. That, to me, says that He knows we have questions as well as brains. He wasn't some cheese-ball salesman so why should we behave that way when it comes to our faith?

There are plenty of Christians who get really irritated by those who express doubts and tend to offer reproach. It seems like a lot of these people are motivated by fear - perhaps because their own faith has never been called into account. It's easier just to follow a formulaic approach than it is to ask whether or not God is real and if He's worth following. Is He worth following? Only if He is real. How do I know He is real? I keep asking Him to reveal Himself to me. How will I reach the maturity level of the apostle Paul unless I am first convinced that God is real? It isn't possible! Paul staked his life on the fact that he knew God was real. Paul had a personal experience with Christ that changed his entire outlook.
Sure, people might ask, "Well how long are you going to keep asking if God is real; at some point you just have to believe!!"

"I will keep asking God as long as it takes." That is my response.
No, I don't have to just believe. That is foolish and naive. People who "just believe" are people who join pyramid schemes and cults and drink the Kool-Aid given to them. God is OK with me asking questions in order to try to gain more understanding. It's like a four-year old who is constantly asking, "Why?" Four-year olds don't ask questions to be annoying, they ask questions because they want to understand the world around them and to understand their place in that world. Do we expect a four-year old to know how to drive a car? No, we expect that they barely know how to wipe themselves after using the toilet. The difference is, most four-year olds do not have a problem admitting that they need help wiping whereas many of us would like to pretend that we possess the skill when, in fact, we need help wiping also. At some point there are the inevitable skid-marks on the ole under-roos and the evidence of our inability is undeniable.

Pride, fear, pretense, self-absorption, lusts, contempt - these are the spiritual silicone parts that we add on until our true selves become unrecognizable. They become the ties that bind.
"Therefore... let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ....Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed. " (Hebrews 12:1,2,12)

I want to see the bubble filled with that kind of wisdom; especially my own bubble.

Saturday, March 8, 2008



"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, 'Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?' Actually, who are you not to be?"
–Nelson Mandela

It's easy to be "nobody". I struggle with nobody-ness all the time because I am afraid of the ramifications and responsibilities of being somebody. I want to know my true self; the self that God created me to be. And then I want to be that person. I suppose it is my mistake to think that is a destination where I can arrive... someday.

What am I passionate about? What are my strengths? What are my talents and gifts? What is the life that I hope to create?

There are a lot of things that I want to do but the real question is: Who do I want to be?

What is the light that frightens me? What will happen if I embrace it?

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Happy Hour

It's Valentine's Day already. Seriously, I live on Hawaiian Time but it doesn't seem to matter because Regular-People-Time just keeps flying by. Why can't I just hang loose while the rest of my countrymen scurry around like rats on a wheel? Who needs all the stupid deadlines and timetables anyway? Once I am stopped up in an urn I'm not gonna care that I made it to the church on time or anywhere else for that matter. I mean, who eulogizes about how dear Josephine was the most punctual person she'd ever met and it really touched her how on-time Josephine always was? Really now. Old Josephine was a real stickler about being punctual. That is the wry truth that everyone will bemoan. Secretly they are all glad that the old nag is pushing up daisies because now she can't make them all feel harried and rushed and guilt-ridden.

Every time I go to write a serious post on here I am seized by boredom of all such things. I don't want to yammer on and on about faith, churchy stuff and depression. Sometimes I feel like I eat, breathe and sleep such things and I will scream if I have to hear another dumb conversation about it. For Pete's sake, just live it already or shut-up. What good is empty philosophy to the rest of us? It's like my friend's friend who claims self-absorption like it's a disease that he, or she, catches from time to time.
"Duh...sorry I haven't called in, like, a month... I caught a bad case of self-absorption and couldn't make it to the phone..." The funny thing is, I've been there. It's so dang easy to live in a microcosm of self. I had to laugh when I heard the charming yet idiotic message that this person left on my friend's phone about the whole thing.

I think I am going to start another blog about the more humorous things in life. We could all use a little more humor, right?

So what's humorous right now? Well, for starters my two-year old looks like a Kewpie doll. That's funny.

Another funny sight is my four-year old wearing only tights and a turtleneck: the crotch on the tights is sagging way down by her knees. Plus she is wiping snot on her sleeve. I wish I could get away with such things.

Thirdly, some girlfriend's and I went out for Happy Hour and they were regaled with tales about the truth about childbirth and it's after effects by the two of us who've been through it. Can anyone say, "Oops, I crapped my pants?" (a skit from SNL) with a straight face? It's probably funnier after a few sips of a beverage. (It doesn't take much, trust me)

The fact that I'm even writing any of this is funny because there is probably someone out there who doesn't think it's funny at all and they are going to blow the alleged whistle on me. That's funny.