Tuesday, September 27, 2005

The Lover's Hermitage

Love, you are my hermitage,
my dwelling for ever.

Just as a happy bachelor
may aspire to be a hermit,
so as your husband(wife) do I dream
of being more married.

Your body is a path leading
through a golden wood;
your love is a clearing
in the center of the forest.

Here have I built my home,
here in you alone.
With you I know a solitude
deeper than my own.

One table, one rocking chair
by the hearth of you--
and in your face a window
brighter than the sky!

Your words are quieter
than my thoughts.
Gladly shall I spend my life
in the cool still hush of you.

When you smile I'm warmed
like earth in the sun.
Your laugh is the brook
at my doorstep.

Gentler are you than breath,
stranger than death.
Just to touch your hair
is more peaceful than sleep.

Surely all my wandering
finds its end in you.
In your brown eyes
may I safely die.

Love, you are my hermitage,
my dwelling for ever.

Sunday, September 25, 2005

Bloggers of the world united

So this morning at church was the great unveiling. Actually, it was the great meeting of fellow bloggers. But after a while, it felt more like an unveiling. Like the face I hide behind the writings on this page has lost its anonymity. I felt exposed.

But I also felt a little bit of community. It was nice to put some faces to a few names.

On another note, a couple fellow bloggers asked how I have been feeling. And it occurred to me that I never really annouced with great rejoicing the end of my "morning" sickness. Which is surprising because it was a rather glorious time! The end of that road came just in time for school to start, in fact. I'm feeling much more normal. Well, as normal as you can feel when you are wearing jeans with a maternity panel in them. (I'm hoping they get more "comfortable" as the baby grows into them...).

Welcome to those who didn't know my name until this morning. And to the "regulars," thanks for being faithful. :)

Thursday, September 22, 2005


I rolled out of bed at 5:45. I took my shower and fed the cats. I killed a giant centipede. I got a banana and sat down at the computer, turning on the television. I didn't even look at the screen right away. As I ate my breakfast and navigated to yahoo.com, I overheard Kare 11's Kim and Tim reporting about the devastating effects of last night's storm. I finally turned my eyes to the screen.

What? Schools are closed? Is there some kind of weird weather phenomenon happening that causes all of those small-town schools to shut down? Wait a second. Fridley. Osseo. Robbinsdale. These were metro schools. I waited until the beginning of the alphabet. But even when I saw Anoka-Hennepin, I could hardly believe my eyes. The state's biggest school district doesn't close for anything. I had to watch three cycles of the closings to finally get it. We were closed! A day off! My friend and fellow A-H teacher called to make sure I had heard about the closing. Lucky for her, she got the news before she got in the shower. I had to finish my breakfast and dry my hair before I could return to my still-warm-and-cozy bed.

It was a lovely surprise and a blessing for this stuffed-up, coughing pregnant woman. And we got a beautiful day to boot! Happy autumn!

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Getting to Know You

Getting to Know All About You...

Nothing like a little musical theater moment courtesy of The King and I.

So, I'm jumping on the bandwagon with this one. Bloggers everywhere are doing it. And I probably wouldn't have if someone didn't add me to the "people I want to do this next" list. But Julie did. And I thank her for it.

Things I want to do before I die
1. travel to Europe with Dan
2. learn to kayak (dad, that would be your cue)
3. get my doctorate in literacy education
4. be published
5. go back to Haiti (Lisa, that would be your cue)

Things I can do
1. cook
2. sing
3. bear children
4. teach
5. tip a canoe

Things I cannot do
1. take sudafed before bed
2. walk on stilts
3. produce sperm
4. cut my own hair (it didn't stop me from trying in 10th grade)
5. consume alcohol without breaking out in a bright red rash

Things that attract me to my husband
1. his eyes
2. his heart
3. his hugs
4. his passion for kids/youth
5. his thoughfulness

Celebrity crushes
1. Matt Damon
2. Ben Affleck
3. MacGyver (there's a story...)
4. Tyler Florence
5. Richard Gere

People I want to do this next
1. Lisa
2. Dan
3. David
4. Vicki (this would require you getting a blog--I mostly put you on here to connect you somehow with the number 4) :)
5. Jackie (because she hasn't posted in like 2 months)

See? That was fun. Now you know random, useless information about me. Go find a way to use it.

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Now, that feels different

For those who read my earlier post and actually did pray for the meeting with my professor, thank you.

As it turns out, I don't have to revise anything! Definitely a God thing. It doesn't mean that she thought my portfolio was flawless, but it was good enough to get by the first time. And from what I hear, most other license applicants have had to rewrite at least a couple of entries. So I felt very proud and lucky and thankful.

And so tired. So I came home, crawled into bed and slept for almost two hours. I remember having a dream about John Heder. Nothing specific, just that he smiled a lot more than Napoleon Dynamite.

Random. Maybe I didn't get quite enough sleep to make up for last night...

Holy long day, Batman

I went to the doctor yesterday afternoon. Just a monthly, routine appointment with my OB. Even though our day "officially" ends at 3:25, I had gotten permission from my principal to leave at 3:15 in order to get to Minnetonka by 4:00. I got there with a few minutes to spare and took my seat in the waiting room.

4:00. 4:15. 4:30.

Finally, I was called in, which didn't mean anything. The nurse took my blood pressure (100/58, thank you very much), recorded my weight (won't be sharing that one, thank you very much), and said the doctor was running a little late but he'd be with me as soon as he could. After reading GQ, Good Housekeeping, and Reader's Digest in the waiting room, I surveyed the magazine selection in the exam room. Child, Parenting, Working Mother, Glamour, More (for woman over 40), and Organic Living. I settled in with Working Mother and my box of kleenex, as I'd been battling allergies all weekend and was getting to the point where I could hardly breathe.

4:45. 5:00. 5:15.

A nurse came in and told me that the doctor was almost finished and he should be right in. Whatever. Let me get back to my reading.

5:20. 5:25.

A new nurse came in and said the doctor was very sorry and he would be with me in five minutes. I forced a smile and blew my nose.

True to the new nurse's word, the doctor showed up at 5:30. An hour and a half after my appointment time. And, of course, I wasn't with him for more than ten minutes. We heard the heartbeat, he checked for swelling in my ankles, and asked if I had any problems or questions. (Why the hell are you running so late?) The one good thing was that before I left, he faxed in a prescription for Nasonex, since I can't take my "go-to" Claritin and Benadryl knocks me out for weeks at a time.

So as I left, I decided to stop at Bruegger's for some chicken spaetzel soup. When I walked in, an hour from closing time, they were ALL out of soup. Very bummed. So I got a sandwich. Not quite the same healing elements, but still dinner.

When I got home, Dan offered to run to Target to pick up my prescription. He called me from the pharmacy saying that they didn't have any record of the prescription being faxed in. After a bit of an ordeal, they called the Park Nicollet urgent care line, pulled up my file, saw that I had been issued the prescription, and were able to fill it. Dan arrived home with Nasonex and sudafed.

Stupidly, I took both and went to bed. When my mom was going through chemo, she got a terrible sinus infection in the middle of everything and ended up having a horrible time with sudafed. In her own words, it was like speed. Not that she knows what that's like, the little hippie that she is. Anyway, she couldn't sleep. And neither could I last night. I slept for a couple hours, then woke up at midnight and was WIDE awake. To the best of my recollection I fell asleep again around 4:00, and dozed off a couple times before my alarm went off at 5:30. I feel like a zombie. I probably should have called in sick, but I'm saving my sick days so I can get paid during my maternity leave!

Well, that was a lot of babbling. If you made it this far, thanks for sticking with me. :)

On another note, I would greatly appreciate your prayers this afternoon. I am meeting with my professor at Bethel to review my portfolio, and find out what I will have to re-do. (See post "Mean People Suck"). I'm not really looking forward to it, but I'll be happy to get the meeting over with.

Thanks, all! Have a nice Tuesday. It sure looks lovely outside!!

Monday, September 12, 2005

Picture painting

I'm a big fan of Sara Groves, and every once in a while I get in a "painting pictures of Egypt" mood. I've been in that mood lately, and I'm not sure why. Where the future seems like a hard place to be, and you make the past seem better than it actually was in an effort to justify going back. Anyway, I'm sharing the lyrics below.

But first, some exciting news. Sara is starting a tour in October with Jars of Clay, Chris Rice, and Donald Miller, amazing author of Blue Like Jazz. You can learn more at saragroves.com.

Painting Pictures of Egypt

I don't want to leave here
I don't want to stay
It feels like pinching to me either way
The places I long for the most
Are the places where I've been
They are calling out to me like a long lost friend

It's not about losing faith
It's not about trust
It's all about comfortable
When you move so much
The place I was wasn't perfect
But I had found a way to live
It wasn't milk or honey
But then neither is this

I've been painting pictures of Egypt
Leaving out what it lacked
The future seems so hard
And I want to go back
But the places that used to fit me
Cannot hold the things I've learned
And those roads were closed off to me
While my back was turned

The past is so tangible
I know it by heart
Familiar things are never easy to discard
I was dying for some freedom
But now I hesitate to go
I am caught between the promise
And the things I know

I've been painting pictures of Egypt
Leaving out what it lacked
The future seems so hard
And I want to go back
But the places that used to fit me
Cannot hold the things I've learned
And those roads were closed off to me
While my back was turned

If it comes too quick
I may not recognize it
Is that the reason behind all this time and sand?
If it comes to quick
I may not appreciate it
Is that the reason behind all this time and sand?

I love "it wasn't milk or honey, but then neither is this." It's like coming to the realization that the past really wasn't good enough to do all over again, but being stuck where the present/future don't seem like a comfortable place to be either.

I'm just thankful that although I don't know what the future holds, I know who holds the future. He hold me too.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

A brand new year!

This past Tuesday brought with it a fresh batch of seventh graders. And although I'm glad tomorrow is Friday, it has been a great week.

My schedule is really a dream. I have prep last hour (perfect for those eventual pregnancy doctor's appointments!). My biggest class is 24 kids and it is supported with a para. I teach all five of my classes in the same room. Most teachers have to travel among classrooms because there aren't enough to go around.

A three-month break for the summer is an obvious perk to being a teacher. But the first week back in the swing of things makes me really realize why I do what I do. And I like it!

Monday, September 05, 2005

Ah, Katrina

I guess it was just a matter of time before I figured out what I wanted to say about the devastation in the south. Not that I have much to say now, but little things keep popping into my head.

The name Katrina means "pure." A word synonymous with "clean" and "innocent." When I see pictures and footage and read stories of the disaster, the last words that come to mind are "clean" and "innocent."

What fascinates me is the wide variety of ways people are reacting to everything. From Kanye West making a complete idiot of himself during the relief concert on Friday night to the Minnesota man who is opening his house to a family of hurricane victims rent-free for a year. From the little boy who brought a bag full of quarters to the red cross booth at the state fair because "the kids down there don't have any toys" to John Grisham (a Mississippi resident, by the way) giving $5 million to the relief fund.

We (teachers) went back to school last week. We are planning on kicking of the school year on Tuesday with an announcement to students that we are conducting a "diaper drive." I think it's awesome. I can't even fathom how long some babies have gone without being changed. Oh, the things we take for granted.

It is so easy to be overwhelmed by the vastness of it all. I even caught myself thinking, "What good is my measely $20 going to do when the need is so big?" But something inside me thought about how many people must think that. That the need is just too big and what we give won't be enough. But I think if everyone who entertained that thought actually gave into it, we'd be depriving the relief effort of so much. Every little bit counts.

I am reminded of our theme as a staff this year. It revolves around the Starfish Story. (Please click on the link and read if you aren't familiar with it). The same can be applied with Katrina. It's wonderful to think about a man opening up a house to a family of seven hurricane victims. A house that he had fixed up and was planning to rent out. But when I see the masses of people who are still stranded and without anything, I think, "What difference does it make if he opens his house to that one family? There are still a million families who are hurting." But it does make a world of difference for that one family who was blessed.

Lord, have mercy.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

We survived!

Last night marked the last of our six summer weddings. I feel bad that we cheated a little along the way--skipping the reception of the fourth and skipping the fifth all together. But we are done. And it was glorious!

The ceremony was in the cutest, most cozy little church in Minneapolis--Lake of the Isles Lutheran Church. The drive around the lake just to get to the church was outstanding. The houses are enormous. The reception was at the Women's Club of Minneapolis. Very elegant. And I'm ALL about the dessert buffet. Awesome.

So congrats to all who tied the knot through the duration of this lovely summer. They were all beautiful and tons of fun. (Despite my frequent rantings...).

It really doesn't end, though. Our next is October 22nd. :)

Friday, September 02, 2005

Hooray for high pollen counts!

Yes, the pollen level is at 10.5 on a 12-point scale right now. The pollen "forecast" for the next few days is quite high as well.

In case you are curious, the primary pollens at this point in the season are ragweed, nettle, and chenopods. :)

If you are a fellow allergy sufferer, please delight in the fact that you can take whatever the heck you want to relieve the symptoms. All my pregnant self is allowed to take is benadryl. Unfortunately, if I did take benadryl, or any other "safe antihistamine," I wouldn't be coherent until at least Tuesday.

So, this weekend, I sneeze. Anybody with me?!