Thursday, June 30, 2011

all things great and small

-Getting Sunday's sermon written in under 2 hours (albeit with prep well beyond that amount of time). Coffee shop = center of enlightenment. :)

-Getting the first parking spot in the Target parking lot. It's the little things...

-The way Jessi is always available to talk. Someone even called in while we were chatting and she matter-of-factly said, "I'll call them back." I have fabulous friends.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

toddlers & tea

-Today was Toddler Time at the local library and my Mom and I took Natalie and Gianna. I love that they love books. They each got to pick out books and a dvd (we're going to have movie time this afternoon "with popcorns" as Natalie would say). They had a great time!

-Having a perfect wee cuppa and mentioning it on Twitter (oh addictive Twitter, how I love thee) and having my buddy Neil from Belfast respond. I love how social networking connects me with so many lovely friends from around the world.

-Hayden taking a serious nap with his cute little paws sprawled out.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

delicious delights

-Curling up with a cup of delicious herbal tea and a good book to lull me to sleep.

-A woman making delighted faces at her baby.

-Going to the coffee shop and being so engrossed in conversation with Ted that I hadn't even ordered my coffee yet. The barista brought my usual regular cup of coffee over to where Ted and I were chatting and said with a smile, "Regular coffee, right? Need anything else?" So friendly.

Monday, June 27, 2011

backyard bliss

A relaxing family Saturday...

(Where Natalie seemed to baptize Gianna...taking after Aunt Weeza!)

(Hayden was clearly overwhelmed by all of the excitement.)

Thursday, June 23, 2011

rainy day plan

-Curling up with Hayden, a blanket and a book and listening to rain pouring down (in Belfast "bucketin") outside.

-Watching my dear friend Ruth's wedding in Belfast online via a live stream. It was so wonderful to be able to be a part of it all the way in Texas.

-Sitting in my favorite coffee haunt reading a favorite missiologist's book* and thinking that I'd really like to preach soon. A few minutes later, the pastor at a nearby church called, asking me to supply preach and serve communion for him in a couple of weeks. What fun.
*Transforming Mission by David Bosch.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

whimsical & comical

-Coming across an amazing modern painting of Audrey Hepburn online. You can see this one and others here. I love how whimsical and regal it is. I need a little more Audrey in my life...might need to go on a Roman Holiday soon, or perhaps play a game of Charade(s).

-Two friends greeting each other warmly with a hug outside the coffee shop.

-Catching a matinee of X-Men with my Dad. I've never really been a comic book person (with the notable exceptions of Calvin and Hobbes and Archie), but I do love a lot of comic-book-based movies. It was a great movie.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

day-o-dad & montreat week 2

First thing's first...

Wishing my wonderful Dad a perfect day! Love you.

Now, I'll share some experiences from the last week at Montreat.

It is so beautiful there. Blissfully cool summer-scarf weather in the mornings, mountains everywhere, enthusiastic birds and gorgeous trees. A couple of other small group leaders and I decided to get up really early (5:30!) and hike up Lookout Mountain so that we could enjoy a sunrise up in the mountains. It was hard work (because this lil' gal didn't have any coffee first), but well worth the trek. Greg and Mike were, as always, such fun companions. I miss them already.

My very own tree!

It looked a wee bit like Ireland.

What beautiful light.

My small group was, again, just awesome. They had such a great sense of humor and really supported each other. I'm gonna miss them, too.

This is amazing Jacob, the son of one of the other small group leaders and a friend from seminary. He plays hard (often creating things out of recycling, like a "ladle" for me to drink my coffee with -- made out of a creamer container and a coffee stirrer). But when he gets tired, he's out! During worship, he just slept with his head on my lap through the whole service. It was so cute...not even loud applause could stir him. Gonna miss that kiddo, too (sense a theme?).

I had a great time with the other small group leaders, the highlight probably being going to the Montreat barn dance that happens for the community every Friday night. It was completely intergenerational, with 5-year-olds and 70-year-olds dancing together. I also loved the old-fashioned fun of a caller, live band and record player for other songs. At one point when we were all having to do a ridiculous dance move (I think resembling a penguin), I laughed so hard I couldn't even catch my breath. So wonderful.

I was so thrilled to reunite with my fabulous friend Jessi after 2 years (really? that long?). It was like we hadn't been apart at all.

(We also enjoyed some pretty tasty Thai food one night.)

I went with Greg and Kira (my fun roomie for the 2 weeks I was there) to this unique coffee shop/food market called the Artisan. I was thrilled to see french press coffee on the menu. Kept me going for sure!

The stirring candlelight service.

And, finally, just a couple shots of flying home I had to share. The first, a lovely last look at those glorious mountains, and the second, an amusing airport employee whimsically swinging his legs off of the part that connects to a plane.

What a great way to spend two weeks. Montreat will always be a thin (distance between heaven and earth very close) place for me.