Sunday, September 30, 2007

walking on water

-A delicious lunch with my Mamacita on the Riverwalk in San Antonio before heading to the airport.

-Friends who are kind enough to pick me up at the airport at midnight.
-A feeling of relief and accomplishment after a Sunday's work being completed.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

planes and plains

(Sorry it's been a while...I had to make an impromptu trip to Texas.)

-Sitting next to someone on the plane and actually talking with them. The interaction with strangers is one thing I love about airports.

-Getting a ton of supportive calls from good friends.

-Spending time with all of my family. It was so great to catch up with parents, my sister, cousins, aunts, uncles and grandparents.

-The largeness of the Texas sky. After living away from here, I find myself staring out the window as we drive past fields of cotton topped by big fluffy clouds in a massive blue sky.

-Late night soul-searching couch conversations.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

we're healing, despite ourselves

-A heavenly-looking sky where sunlight streamed from behind large clouds. It looked like light was being directed to particular places where it was most needed.

-At my committee meeting last night, we were discussing the progress the church has made in moving out of its conflict. One woman simply said, "We're healing, despite ourselves." What a beautiful statement.

-Knowing that my Granddaddy and Great Uncle are really enjoying each other's company right now.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

melodious mexican food

-Spending a couple of hours playing guitar and singing with Karen and Jessi in the chapel to practice for our upcoming youth conference. It's the first time we've all practiced together, and we weren't half bad. It felt great to have strings vibrating beneath my fingers as Karen and I strummed in unison.

-Dinner at Los Bravos with lots of friends to celebrate Jessi's birthday. We sat outside, sipped cool beverages and ate more than we thought possible.

-Forgoing fast food on my way home for my homemade spaghetti with sauce made from tomatoes, pancetta, garlic and basil.

Friday, September 21, 2007

sisterhood of the traveling pants

-Cheryl shaking a crate myrtle tree above my head so that little purple blossoms cascaded down onto me.

-My professor using a metaphor to help us understand the concept of Hindu moksha. Usually I find that metaphors over-simplify and cheapen a concept, but in this case, he illumined our understanding of moksha in a beautifully real and vivid way.

-Getting my sister's old jeans in the mail. She has great jeans, and when she wears them out a bit, they come to me. We're pretty much the same size, so they fit like a glove. Ash drew a picture of jeans saying "Hi, Whitney!" on the package, which made me laugh out loud.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

"scathingly brilliant ideas"

-Maggie leaving me a large, fragrant basil plant outside my door with a kind note. I immediately began dreaming of homemade pestos, tomato sauces and ensalata caprese.

-The way I can come home from a really long day and just hand all my "stuff" to Karen and Rob, who pour me a glass of wine, listen and make me feel better.

-The Trouble with Angels coming on tv last night. It was a favorite of my cousin Adele and me, and I haven't seen it in years. It made me miss her, and remember how much we used to watch that movie at our Grandparents' house.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

loving life, reunion and ricoffy

-The man behind me at Chick-Fil-A who suddenly said to himself, "I love my life." Jessi pointed out that he had been having a lengthy conversation with himself, but still I find his statement cheering.

-Seeing my good friend Omi after a long time. There's nothing better than walking in a place, seeing someone you haven't seen in ages, and making a really loud and hug-ful production out of the reunion.

-Sipping my Ricoffy (cheers Gareth) in my favorite chair with the window open. The cool breeze wafting in makes me feel like I'm outside. I really miss drinking coffee outside in the morning, so this is a close second.

Monday, September 17, 2007

signs of fall

-The first signs of fall: it's cooler outside, and the first tree near the church has started turning golden. (See Oct. 29th post for just how colorful these trees will get.)

-A session member joking with me in the middle of a meeting as he walked by. After spending all evening with the youth group, it's hilarious that the greatest mischief comes from an adult.

-A sermon saying that we are called to lives of discomfort and challenge, and that if we don't do anything in our lives that makes us uncomfortable or nervous, we might be missing something. Starting a new job as a youth director adds a healthy portion of discomfort to my life these days (and adds a lot of joy as well).

Saturday, September 15, 2007

enthusiasm, strength and sunlight

-An adorable smiley little dog who kept wagging his tail and moving towards me everytime I looked at him.

-At the coffee shop today, there was a teenager about age 13 sitting with her parents, who were arguing. They were clearly divorced, and kept arguing with each other and her about what time they were supposed to all meet up (thus ruining all of the allotted time they had together). The girl looked completely miserable, but the glimpse of grace came when we made eye contact and smiled at each other. I can't imagine what strength it took for her to smile at me under such awful circumstances.

-The sun shining through trees on me and my book, casting moving leafy shadows everywhere.

Friday, September 14, 2007

little red (raining) hood

-Opening my living room window to let the coolness and smell of rain waft in. I instinctually made a cuppa--tea and rain just go so well together.

-Pulling my little red hood on to cover my head from the rain as I move from the car to indoors.

-Having a huge amount of work to do, and yet not being stressed by any of it. I know I'll get it all done somehow.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

float, share, save.

-A bright blue butterfly floating around my car as I walk up to it.

-A parking lot conversation with co-workers as we left the church that made us feel like a team, sharing the burdens of ministry.

-Sitting in the grass and catching up with Katy. She's made a committment to not buy any new clothes for one year, to set that money aside for travelling. I'm really inspired by this (because I don't need to acquire more "things" in my last year of seminary) and am going to give it a try. We're already discussing taking a trip together to Napa on a wine tour with our savings.

Monday, September 10, 2007

first and later

-Leading my first Sunday night fellowship as youth director and really enjoying it. I especially loved when one teenager turned to me after and said, "How are you doing?" After so much time trying to catch up with their lives, it's nice to have a young person catch up with mine.

-A little girl in the grocery store coming out of nowhere to pick up what I dropped. I know Presbyterians don't really believe in karma, but it was certainly interesting and amusing when, a few minutes later, a woman in front of me in the store dropped her glasses and I picked them up for her.

-The first (and last) bite of the buttery popcorn I'd been dreaming of all during class.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

once upon a pizza

-Seeing Once, a wonderful film. It's set in Dublin, Ireland, so I kept telling my friend, "I've been there!" and "that's Grafton Street!" It was exciting to see a familiar place on the big screen. It was only showing at this artsy theatre in Atlanta, which was really art deco and neat. It's about two aspiring musicians, one Irish, one Czech, who find shared music and love. I was thrilled to later learn that they actually perform together in real life and are in love.

-My emailed daily lectionary being especially relevant.

-The fun of sharing large, delicious pizzas with friends. There's something about passing plates and dishing out pizza that ushers in community.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

picnic, practice and plum

-The seminary community picnic. I enjoyed catching up with friends, sitting under trees and watching children play.

-The Jr. High Sunday School class telling me that they want to study other faiths, to better understand them and our own. I'm taking a class on Hinduism and Buddhism in seminary, so this sounded like a great idea to me. Robert found me the perfect curriculum that incorporates how other faiths are viewed by the media and how to best live in global community in all of our diverse practices and beliefs.
-Sleeping in my new plum-colored sheets. I sleep really well in such a dark and soft bed.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

there and back again

-A warm "you're back!" as I entered Wed. night supper at church.

-A really great hug.

-Driving with my windows down last night, not out of necessity, but because it was a cool enough evening for it.

Monday, September 03, 2007

video, audio and storage

-The quirkiness, humor and love of Amelie. What an amazing movie. While I'm at it...Stardust is one of the best movies I've seen all year. (Just wanted to plug it...really, I think everyone should see it.)

-A member of my church coming up to me after the service with a gift. I opened it, and it was the box set of BBC's radio plays of Lord of the Rings on CD. I had mentioned my love of the trilogy in my last sermon there in May, and so he decided I needed it. What a wonderfully thoughtful gift! I've already listened to two of the CD's, and it's brilliant. I can hear my favorite story while cooking, eating dinner and getting ready for the coming week. It's great.

-Jessi and I miraculously fitting her new shelves (in 6 feet long boxes) from Ikea into her teeny-tiny Jetta. We were able to get the top of her convertible down and wedge them behind the seats. Cheering at our accomplishment was perhaps the most fun part of the whole encounter.

Saturday, September 01, 2007

child's play

-Watching a child dangle from a tree limb with, I'll admit, some jealousy. Why does it look so natural for a child to do and so bizarre for a grown up?

-Laughing aloud from the book I'm reading.

-The orange glow of the sunset beckoning me outside with my guitar. It's becoming a bit of a ritual for me...serenading the sun to sleep. It's my favorite time of day, and I revel in being able to be outside with orange light shining on me, locusts humming above me and the cool evening breeze around me.

...and the best glimpse of all: breakfast with my fabulous and great friend, Meghan! :)