Saturday, July 23, 2016


Today is all about sound.
  1. What sound is soothing to you?
           The most soothing sound is waves lapping the shore - either a lake or ocean.

2. What sound do you find irritating?
            Fingers on a chalkboard - uhh, just awful.

3. What sound makes you happy?
             Cowbells clanging as the brown swiss cows graze on an alp. I miss that sound
             most of all.

4. What sound immediately gets your attention?
             A siren, especially when I'm driving. I want to make sure I can pull over and give
            them the right of way.

5. What is your favorite sound to make?
             I think that would be singing with a congregation. I don't sing real well but if everyone
             around me is singing I will join in. I do love to sing hymns for they touch my soul
             and offer one way to praise God.

Tuesday, July 05, 2016


We have celebrated the 4th of July and I am wanting to play hookey - it is summer afterall. And it will be a long summer without our annual trip to the beach in WI. A looong summer. There are 5 Sundays in July - I'll be preaching every week.
  I miss the summers of my youth - when the days and weeks stretched near endlessly before me. And there was freedom - freedom to ride our bikes to the playground, to the library to pick up fresh books to read and return before the due date those already read, and to the pool to swim in the glorious water!
   There was freedom to play outside after our chores - dusting, or helping clean house, or doing yard
work. There would be a weekend in Chicago with my Aunt (a nurse at Northwestern) who lived across from the John Hancock building and the adventure of travelling by EL into the city, being met
by my aunt, stopping at Marshall Field's - at times having lunch in their restaurant, stopping at Kroch & Brentano's  - the forerunner to Barnes & Noble and Border's, riding the bus, walking on Michigan Ave, going to the Art Institute, having dinner at Don the Beachcomber's, swimming in Lake Michigan and spending an afternoon at Oak Street Beach - complete with  picnic lunch and cool straw mats to lay on that rolled up into neat little, lightweight rolls we could carry!
   There was the camping vacation every year - often to National Parks - the Smokey Mountains, the
trip to Florida - stopping at Lookout Mountain and Rock City, the Rocky Mountains, Mount Rushmore, Yellowstone, Grand Teton, the Grand Canyon, Yosemite and Big Sur, Glacier, Banf, Jasper in Canada, the trip around the Great Lakes, Niagara Falls, Gettysburg and Williamsburg, and Washington DC. Family time, sitting around a campfire in the evening, roasting marshmallows, being in nature, seeing historical sites, always an adventure. Learning and seeing so much, appreciating our diverse and great land and respecting nature - keeping mindful distances with the wildlife, being quiet
so as to see the wildlife - and we were rarely disappointed, not littering or defacing anything. The
land is sacred, the land is ours, it is to be preserved in its natural state for all time - for future generations to enjoy, to marvel and be awed by.
    And this summer, for the first time, in ages - no vacation for me, for us. It will be a working summer. Sigh.
    I may take 2 days off from the one interim position, but will still have the other visitation position
for 2 days that week. Plus, I still have to write a sermon. Not much of a vacation by any stretch of the
   I could so use 10 days or two weeks to unwind and simply rest, and do some fun things - check
out local and historical sites, try a local restaurant, read and soak up the nature and scenery of
a new place, any place.
   My long-term interim is slowly drawing to a close - the candidate will be at the congregation after
the middle of August and by sometime in Sept. I will be done there and with the long commute.
   But in the meanwhile, I miss going away, I long for a day of no responsibility, to refresh my
spirit, to rest and relax. Maybe, I'll take part of an afternoon off  - and just play!