Thursday, June 29, 2006

how not to lose your mind

while working out to videos:

  • a variety is helpful, for sanity, and for not repeating the same uses of particular muscles day in and day out. I can only do so many knee lifts after awhile.
  • find a couple of tapes that are so easy, you can listen to other things and still follow them. I find that the walk DVDs I have are simple enough that I can work out to Diane Rehm, Car Talk, and other NPR favorites.
  • Check customer reviews on collagevideo.com and amazon.com. They are very helpful. Also, collagevideo has little previews you can click on and play.
  • Most DVDs are too short for serious weight loss, but if you combine them, you can put together some nice long workouts.
  • The cats will not display any interest at all in your behavior, and will probably go to sleep on the couch.

Monday, June 26, 2006

if you pass a resolution at General Convention

and no one notices. . .

Turns out life in one's actual parish is a lot different than life online.

If you read online, you would think the sky is falling.

If you were around our diocese last weekend, you would have noticed the ordination of 3 permanent deacons, and a packed cathedral to witness to it and support them.

If you were around our congregation, you would have witnessed the gathering of the body, an enjoyable time looking at the history of the 1789 Prayer Book, Eucharist, surprise visitors who dropped in to see me, gatherings over coffee and cookies, a lunch bunch that gathered at a local restaurant to check in on the restaurant owner, a member of the congregation, and some wedding planning.

I think I'll stick to the stuff I can actually make a difference in.

Friday, June 23, 2006

we all scream

Ice cream. . .the perfect way to change the topic. . .

The RevGal Friday Five

1. Ice cream: for warm weather only or a year-round food? Please, why are we even asking this question? Year-round, although especially appropriate in summer.

2. Favorite flavor(s)
Flavors with chocolate and crunchy things. Cherries, strawberries, also work well. Pralines and cream, yum. There's a cappuccino chunky frozen yogurt thing at Braum's that is a current family hit

3. Cake cone, sugar cone, waffle cone, cup?
It's all good, but for personal choices, waffle and sugar.

4. Childhood ice-cream memory
Walking a few blocks up to the local Baskin-Robbins in the summer. Oh, and the ice cream truck swinging through the park that was just next door to our apartment in Chicago. Eating Good Humor ice cream bars from the same truck while watching people on the beach.

5. Banana splits: discuss. I haven't had one in years! At this point in life, they would have to be shared. Although I have to admit that those commercials for the little junior splits at Sonic that are constantly on the air here in OKC are starting to lodge in my brain and whisper, "go to Sonic." So far, I haven't given in. . .

(Feel free to answer the above based on your favorite frozen yogurt, sorbet, lactose-free, you name it.)

Wednesday, June 21, 2006


I've started any number of posts today about General Convention and our life in the Church.

They all seem inadequate.

A friend of mine has a running joke that someday she's just going to quit parish ministry and work in the produce section of a local grocery store.

Today is one of those days when I know just what she means.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

waiting breathlessly

The cats are waiting with anticipation for what promises to be significant actions in the life of the Episcopal Church. . . 

Well, maybe not. Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 19, 2006

umm. . .wow

So', just an ordinary Sunday, two services, Adult Forum in the middle. I kept checking the computer at breaks to see if a new Presiding Bishop had been elected (it's hard not to think about white smoke and bells in this context).

In the afternoon, a stop at the OKC Knit Guild for the detailed announcement about the visit of the Yarn Harlot (July 25th, 6-8 p.m., a talk at the Village Library, followed by booksigning and reception at Gourmet Yarn Company--y'all come). I had to leave early to get to the Cathedral where I was officiating Evensong (they were short clergy today) and I was listening to NPR, blah, blah, blah, the Episcopal Church has just elected its first woman Presiding Bishop--just as I was pulling onto I-44--I almost went off the road.

Three years ago, I was in Minneapolis as an ECW delegate, and I remember the Sunday of General Convention very clearly. I went to the big convention Eucharist with a friend from my congregation, who was a deputy, and then I sat in the big hall to hear the Deputies debate the ratification of Gene Robinson's election. I had a strong sense of witnessing history--whichever way the vote came out. At dinner later in the week, one of the deputies said, as we were processing the fallout, "We shouldn't come back to Minneapolis for Convention for a long time--strange things always happen here" (Minneapolis was also the site for the approval of women's ordination, among other things. . .)

She'll have to add Columbus to that list, now.


Whatever one might think about the Episcopal Church, it is not dull. Not these days.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

a little bit of fun

Ok, I can't resist pointing this one out:

In my inbox this morning, direct from the Episcopal News Service, was this headline on an email: "Bishops vote in favor of slavery and racial reconciliation. . ."


Mainly, however, the cares of General Convention have receded from my mind because of some news posted on the tour page of the one and only Yarn Harlot.

More will be revealed at our Metro OKC Knitting Guild meeting on Sunday.

A woo and a hoo.

Friday, June 16, 2006

Zzzz--Friday Five

(Speaking of sleep, I did manage to fall asleep after watching Larry King interview various players in the controversies facing the Episcopal Church, which was way past my General Convention curfew. I'm trying not to read news from Convention too late in the evening, so I can get the sleep of which reverendmother speaks. . .)

Via reverendmother and the RevGalBlogPals:

1. In what kind of environment do you sleep best? (e.g. amount of light and noise, temperature, number of pillows, breathe-right strip, sleeping in the buff, etc.)

It was a dark and stormy night. . .no, seriously, I fall asleep best to darkness and rain, slightly cool, two pillows. Even better with a cat mushed down by my feet. Also, a good round of exercise during the day, and a session of pattern admiring with a stack of knitting magazines seems to be key in drifting off.

2. How much sleep do you need to feel consistently well-rested?
How much can you get by on?
What are the consequences when you don't get enough?

Left to my own devices, eight hours is what I get, and can wake up after those 8 hours without an alarm. Below six, I'm crabby and a little lightheaded.

3. Night owl or morning person? Morning person, although being a pastor means you have to be able to do both, thanks to nighttime vestry meetings AND early morning services.

4. Favorite cure for insomnia often lying on the couch or the futon helps, a little change of scenery does the trick

5. To snooze or not to snooze? Why or why not? Snooze alarms. . .bad. Also, you get those funky half asleep half awake dreams that are pretty wacky and not at all restful

Thursday, June 15, 2006

I am a lemming

On my needles: a ball-band dishcloth in bright colors from a fall off the wagon purchase at Joann's. (Well, I didn't have those colors in the dishcloth cotton collection.)

Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Not much to report

but I'll blog anyway. . .

Various moments:

--I finally went to the doctor about the sty on my eyelid. I was informed that I had a sty. (Actually, I like my new doctor very much, as he displayed appropriate sarcasm about the state of what passes for a system of American health care).

--I am continuing to bump up my daily exercise quotient. This change in my life is very positive, but it does take focus and energy that I don't have for other things.

--My bishop spotted me at the Norman Sit n Stitch at Borders last Thursday. He seemed unsurprised to find me ensconced among knitters and yarn.

--Said bishop and various other Oklahomans are gathered with half of the Episcopal Church in Columbus, Ohio. The wonders of technology are allowing us at home to follow along much more closely than in years past. I am missing being there; it is great fun, and I may sign up next time as a volunteer.

--I was eaten several times by tiny T.Rexes and Velociraptors at Vacation Bible School this morning (oh, and I taught a lesson on Jesus and the Samaritan woman at the well, too).

Monday, June 12, 2006

Who knew?

Your Inner European is Swedish!

Relaxed and peaceful.
You like to kick back and enjoy life.
Who's Your Inner European?

Sunday, June 11, 2006

of the Trinity

Trinity Sunday
John 3:1-16
(preached originally without notes, so this is an edited version of what actually happened)

When I was in seminary, I was handed a sheet of paper with the list of courses we were required to take our first year. Church History, I thought I could handle that. Church Music, no problem. But one class title, for the spring term, leaped off the page at me. Systematic Theology. Theology--well, that sounded a lot like Philosophy, which I spent my four years as a liberal arts major avoiding--all that thinking. Systematic--well, that sounded like math, and that hadn't gone to well in high school.

Then I turned up in class, and the syllabus was even more frightening--we had to do papers on God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit, and a final 20 page paper on the Trinity.

All I remembered of the Trinity was that drawing with the circles and the triangles from confirmation class--which hadn't made any sense to me when I was 11, and hadn't been cleared up since.

Thankfully, our professor was very good--although I did suspect that he was going to be the first professor who was ever going to tell us that HIS dog ate OUR homework, but I digress--and working on that paper helped me understand what was going on with the Trinity, why it's so important.

After all, in the Episcopal Church, we don't care how you're baptized--sprinkled, poured on with water, dunked 3 times in the river with white robes--but what does matter is that you're baptized in the name of the Trinity, in the name of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.

So why does it matter so much?

What Systematic Theology helped me understand is that all that 3 in one language is about two things--God is bigger than any one thing that we can imagine AND the very heart of God's being is relationship. God is the relationship between Father, Son and Holy Spirit--and that relationship is love. The love of Father and Son pouring out into the Holy Spirit. And it's so important for us to be drawn into that love because we get drawn into something bigger than just us--it's not all about me.

(Here I handed out a paper copy of this icon).

This icon of the Trinity was painted by a Russian icon painter named Rublev. I could go on all day talking about the importance of icons, and how each gesture, each facial expression, each color, each item in the icon has significance. But what is critical with this icon is that, as you look at it, you realize that the 3 of them are looking at you. The viewer is at the fourth place at the table. You have been invited to sit with the Trinity at the Table, and participate in that relationship of love.

On this Sunday, as we do every Sunday, let us gather at the table, let ourselves be drawn into the heart of that love, that we show it forth into the world. Amen.

Friday, June 09, 2006

RevGal Friday Five

Songbird, what is this rain of which you speak?

It's bone-dry and hot here. (How hot is it?) It's so hot, I stopped at Large Chain Clothing Store yesterday before meeting Kay for dinner and knitting to get a lighter colored outfit--too hot for black!)

1. Favorite way to spend a rainy day

Curled up with books, knitting and cats, or walking outside, splashing in puddles. Or getting thorougly soaked, coming back in, putting on clothes warm from dryer.

2. Favorite song about rain

How about the Eurhythmics "Here Comes the Rain Again."

3. Favorite movie featuring rain

"Singing in the Rain," of course. Gene Kelly dancing, what more could one ask for?

4. Favorite piece of raingear, past or present
Not an umbrella, I always lose them or they get turned outside out by strong wind.
I once had once of those cute patterned raincoats, white, with the preppy pattern inside. It was really, really cute. Really. Didn't breathe at all, but it was really cute.

5. Favorite word for rain -- "Pluie," French (is that spelling right?)

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

silly season is upon us

Does anyone remember when no one noticed what the Episcopal Church would be up to in its General Convention?


A friend of mine calls this time the pre-convention silly season. The most bizarre rumors have reached me via the grapevine, which I'm not going to repeat, lest someone trying to find out whether a rumor is true googles it.

Being a historian and anthropologist gives one a particular perspective. Over the years the Anglican tradition has fought about a)altars or tables? b)altar rail or no? c) candles on the altar? d) the wearing of the surplice e) the use of wedding rings f) could the king annul a marriage (a few times) and so forth and so on.

I was at the last convention, as a delegate to the Triennial Meeting of the Episcopal Church Women. While everyone else was doing their thing, we were learning the hula from the delegation from Hawaii.

Strangely, CNN didn't cover that part.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

the wisdom of Perky Fitness Chick

I haven't blogged much about this, because I didn't want to jinx my efforts and derail what I was working on, but I've been spending my mornings with a Perky Fitness Chick via the wonders of DVD. I would not have thought that I would ever have turned into a workout in front of the TV kind of person, but as Husband sagely said, "the best exercise is the one you actually do," so there it is.

As I was in the middle of various low-impact bodily contortions yesterday, using a tape I hadn't yet tried, said Perky Fitness Chick said something that really jumped out at me. She was talking about the importance of building muscle, and that muscle has an attractive shape to it, that body fat distorts our appearance.

I think she's on to something. Not that I'm ever going to be American's Next Top Model, but I thought about what it meant to be spiritually weighted down, by excess poundage in our bodies or our hearts, or, for most Americans, with all of our stuff.

If we're really made in God's image, than all that stuff we carry around with us really is a distortion of that.

(and on that note, I have a date with Perky Fitness Chick. . .)

Friday, June 02, 2006

thank goodness for Friday Five

Just got back from annual small group retreat with our Bishop, and having waded through an entire day's worth of emails regarding the current state of the Episcopal Church, I have nothing to say. Thanks, reverendmother, for a lighthearted Friday Five!

1. If you were a mutant, what ability would you like to have? (think superpower)

Bilocation comes to mind. . .of course clergy already can do that and read people's minds, right? (said with tongue firmly planted in cheek)

2. Tell us about a memorable road trip you've experienced.

A trip to Santa Fe with friends from Tucson--in the middle of winter. It was a) really cold and b) because it was so cold, we had car trouble as the cold did something to the car engine worthy of a phone call to the Magliozzi brothers. We did return home safely, and I also learned that one should not blithely order enchiladas with green chile sauce without enquiring as to the strength of the chile!

3. Do you enjoy solving riddles and working on puzzles? If so, what kinds?
I do puzzles in waves--I'll go on a crossword or sudoku kick. Currently I'm kind of addicted to weboggle, which is a web version of boggle--don't go there or you will be sucked into the dark side as well.

4. Take two of your phobias and combine them to make a campy horror/disaster flick. What would it be called?
Fear and Loathing on a Tall Swaying Bridge Overlooking a Deep Rocky Chasm

5. Just how batsh*t crazy is Tom Cruise, anyway?


Bonus: Name each of the five movies that inspired these questions.
Hmm, I can think of XMen and MI3 of the top of my head--the rest is hopeless.