Monday, January 30, 2006

On darning a sock...

Darning a sock... who does that anymore? Who would even consider it? Women used to learn how to do that all the time, repair holes in your socks. Nowadays we all just make a cliche joke about having "holy socks" and throw them away the next time we remember. Where did you start thinking about this Laura - you may ask? Well.... I went on a retreat with Woodland this weekend - a Winter Woodland Retreat to Cathedral Domain - a retreat center about an hour outside of Lexington - and we focused on SIMPLFYING our lives. We watched a video that followed the progression of society in its need for new and the novelty rather than appreciating the antique or fixing what needs repaired. Ok - so it was a little more complex than that, but here's the way I understand it. As a society we no longer place value on the antiquated. Everyone wants and needs something new, something never been used, and when something breaks, instead of having it fixed or figuring out a way to adapt, we instead just buy more crap. Then you end up with 4 cell phones in your closet that don't work, more clutter in your life, and more stuff to worry about. Now this is just ONE example of the need to simplify our lives. Yes, getting rid of the physical clutter in our lives will help with simplifying our lives, but it's more than that. It's realizing how much you really need to be working in order to really be happy. Do you really need to have the most up to date everything in your house, fashion wise, car wise, even food wise? Do we all need to constantly be busy, constantly having a project or something to occupy our time? So often that translates into working long hours and never being able to appreciate the large house and family that you have, because you are trying to maintain a level of income that can support that lifestyle. So the answer is not JUST that we need less's that in order to live off of a more limited income, we probably need to make decisions about what "stuff" in our lives can go.... if we no longer have a need for this huge income, whether it's because we take less expensive trips, buy less expensive or fewer clothes, or because we take the ultimate cable channels out of our homes, when we don't need this large income anymore, then we can work less and spend more time doing the things that really matter to us! So I may not take to darning socks anytime soon - but I'll be looking at my lifestyle and trying to see what I can take out of it, try to scrape out the clutter - and make my life more meaningful in the end.

The Mexican Fisherman

A boat docked in a tiny Mexican village. An America tourist complitmented the Mexican fisherman on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took him to catch them. "Not very long," answered the Mexican. "But then, why didn't you stay out longer and catch more?" asked the American. The Mexican explained that his small catch was sufficient to meet his needs and those of his family. The American asked, "But what do you do with the rest of your time?" "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, and take a siesta with my wife. In the evenings, I go into the village to see my friends, have a few drinks, play the guitar, and sing a few songs...I have a full life." The American interrupted, "I have an MBA from Harvard and I can help you! You should start by fishing longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra recenue, you can buy a bigger boat." "And after that?" asked the Mexican. "With the extra money the larger boat will bring, you can buy a second one and a third one and so on until you have an entire fleet of trawlers. Instead of selling your fish to a middle man, you can then negotiate directly with the processing plants and maybe even open your own plant. You can then leave this little village and move to Mexico City, Los Angeles, or even New York City! From there you can direct your huge new enterprise." "How long would that take?" asked the Mexican. "Twenty, perhaps twenty-five years," replied the American. "And after that?" "Afterwards? Well my friend, that's when it gets really interesting," answered the American, laughing. "When your business gets really big, you can start selling stocks and make millions!" "Millions? Really? And after that?" asked the Mexican. "After that you'll be able to retire, live in a tiny village near the coast, sleep late, play with your children, catch a few fish, take a siesta with your wife and spend your evenings drinking, playing the guitar and enjoying your friends."

Know where you're going in may already be there.

Thursday, January 26, 2006


So.... ok - I'll say it - get it out in the open...I was dating two people at one time and neither of them knew about each other. One, still talking to him, we've only gone to lunch once, so I don't forsee him being very upset or anything like that... I will probably end up telling him, but we weren't exclusive obviously from only one lunch date, so I don't think there's anything to worry about. At least I hope not, because I don't like this dating multiple people thing.... so now that crazy one (which you will read about in a minute) is out of the picture, I'd like to explore things with the Dutch man :) Now the other, grew very attached, very quickly - which then turned out to be a bad thing. It was only three weeks!~ But the thing is - I'm a little annoyed... because I was VERY VERY honest from the beginning that I was not interested in this huge commitment, that I felt like he was feeling like there was more there than I thought so. Of course I thought something was there, but not necessarily enough to throw out that commitment word.... :) And I said that from the get go - AND every time we had the "what are we" conversation - I made sure to say that this wasn't a huge exclusive commitment, I don't want that, I'm enjoy myself when I'm with you, but I don't necessarily want full on commitment.... so then.... when I want to break up, somehow I turn out to be the bitch. How does this happen? I'm really really sorry you were more into this than I was, but I admitted from the beginning how much I wasn't into our dating, that it wasn't near as much as you! I'm very sorry that you were hurt, but I also admitted that I was afraid of hurting you in the end because of how I felt... So how and why does being completely and 100% honest from the very beginning now make me out to be the bitch? AND - why would you want to be with someone that isn't into the relationship as much as you are?!?! That's not fair to either person! Don't make me feel so bad that I end up staying with you because I don't want to see you hurt... but in the end I'm hurting more because I'm unhappy....damnit.... I'm 23 - let me live it up a little - I'm not looking for marriage, I have my whole life for that - can't I just be 23 and single living on my own, and just having fun??

Monday, January 23, 2006

Another reason to move to New Zealand...

WASHINGTON, Jan. 22 - A pilot nation-by-nation study of environmental performance shows that just six nations - led by New Zealand, followed by five from Northern Europe - have achieved 85 percent or better success in meeting a set of critical environmental goals ranging from clean drinking water and low ozone levels to sustainable fisheries and low greenhouse gas emissions. The US ranks 28th.... (New York Times Article)

Sunday, January 22, 2006

May 26, 2006

I just found out today that I will be visiting Auschwitz, the Nazi death camp in Poland, on my birthday. I'm not sure what significance this has on the fact that it is in fact my birthday, if any... but I just thought it was an interesting way to spend your birthday. I will be traveling to Poland with a class to study the "The Christian Misuse of the First (Old) Testament and its Implications on the Holocaust". Yay for study trips! It's just going to be a very odd birthday to be at a Nazi death camp... I guess it will be one of those days that you realize how small and unimportant you are in the greater scheme of things... just weird to have that day be your birthday! Now let's see... who else was born on May 26?
John Wayne
Miles Davis
Jack Kevorkian (hmmm....)
Stevie Nicks
Hank Williams Jr.
Sally Ride (The astronaut)
Lenny Kravitz

In Australia - it is National Sorry Day - It was started in 1998 and attempts to inform of the treatment of Aborigine children in the past as well as heal some of the wounds caused.

In Poland - it is mother's day - to think that we will be there then!

In Georgia (the country, formerly of the soviet union) - it is National Day (faaaabulous)

Maybe I should have been an entertainer, lots of entertainers that are somewhat successful were also born on May 26... maybe they'll give me some money because have soooo much in common?

Thursday, January 19, 2006


On February 24 & 25 the youth at my church, Woodland Christian will be joining in the 30 Hour Famine, fasting for 30 hours to raise money and support for the hungry, homeless and oppressed both in our community and around the world. I want to ask for prayers that this event goes well and that the kids can really feel the presence and understanding of what the 30 Hour Famine is about. I'm very excited about this and think that the kids are going to have a fabulous time, especially as we are doing this almost as a regional youth event - because we will have at least 5 Disciples churches from around the area joining in. OK - so the numbers won't be near what a regional youth event would be, but I am pretty excited. It's amazing that we don't utilize the networking and connections we have at Lexington Theological Seminary, seeing as how pretty much any church within an hour of Lexington has a student working at their church and primarily, most likely in a youth position. I'm excited to start this networking thing with Andrea, Jeff, Kelley and Tina - hope it all goes well!

High School Still?

Gallup's pollsters asked about 1000 adults whether they think popularity during the teen years correlates with success later. 37% of respondents said kids who were popular in high school end up being less successful than those who were not popular. 25% of respondents, echoing the conventional wisdom, said the popular kids wind up more successful. 24% scored it a tie.

What about the other 14 % ? I find that a lot of people who weren't popular in high school come up with this idea about how people "peak" in life - and if you peak in high school then that means that you can't peak after high school. Now what does peak mean? Popularity? Happiness? Beauty? Money? And why can't we "peak" several times in life? Why is this a zero sum issue here that we only get success once in life? Now granted, I wouldn't say I was what you would typically consider "popular" in high school. But I never cared - it's what you care about that lets you peak where you want. I cared about good friends, good times, learning (I know - I'm such a book nerd) - rather, learning about life, enjoying life, and growing up - and I had a fabulous time in high school. I loved being a band geek, I loved the fact that I enjoyed school and I loved my high school life. I also loved college and I love what I'm doing now. I think it's just a matter of how you looked at life. If you constantly look for what you've lost and what people have taken away from you, then you are never going to appreciate what you have!

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Note to my readers....

I dont' mind whoever reads my blog - obviously, if I was shy about my views or what I wanted people to know, then I wouldn't post my opinions on the internet.... but if you're going to comment on my blog - please put a name or someway that I can address you... otherwise, if you're anonymously reading my blog, then you are anonymous to me and so are your comments.... I know I can set my comments so that you can't post something anonymously, but I guess I naively hoped that wouldn't be necessary...

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Conspiracy Theory

So please don't read into this at all - I'm not into conspiracies and I don't necessarily believe ANY of what I write below, basically I'm just horrendously bored in my class and need something to let my mind wander. :)
So - currently there is this huge conspiracy that President Bush somehow knew about the actions of 9/11 and for whatever reason still allowed it to happen. Now I have yet to figure out why people would say - because I have yet to find a valid reason why we would allow the lives of innocent unsuspecting americans to be lost - but today I found was educated on a previous conspiracy that might lead to this same one about 9/11. It stems off another conspiracy or thought I guess, surrounding something people compared 9/11 to... Pearl Harbor. After WWI, we are all aware that the US entered into a huge economic depression....why did this happen? One theory is based upon the fact that US citizens became largely isolationists....we isolated ourselves from the rest of the world economically - specific example, the Smoot Hawley tariffs system which promoted isolationism by having such high tariffs on global trade etc. The US wanted to remain so isolated, because of the huge loss it suffered in WWI, for what many believed to be no reason (as in we shouldn't have been there in the first place) - So we're in a depression and Europe is in another war.... hmmmm.... not so appealing to the common person to enter into this war again. Now this is where it should be dispusted. Did the US citizens decide we should not go into the second World War knowing what had been happening in Europe (i.e. mass genocide of millions of people), or were we as US citizens completely unaware of the Holocaust and did not want to enter the war because of lingering isolationism? The US government needed a good reason to enter into the war, knowing that they should do something - anything - that they could, but not having the full backing of the country. So, could the US have known about Pearl Harbor - known that the Japanese were going to attack at some point, somewhere, not necessarily knowing where, but that the US government, mainly very high up officials, let it happen. They let it happen because they knew that it would allow them a reason to enter into the war, knowing that they needed to, and knowing that they should have been involved for quite some time by then.... So now the American public is hurt and wants to be aggressive in action and enter into the war.

Now - today, I still do believe that George W has some unfinished business with Sadaam that stems from issues started by his father - but not necessariy to oust him from power. I just find it hard to believe that there is no connection between father and son and their political views/policies/agendas etc. Now - to explain this conspiracy that I've heard about today.... It is said that George W needs a reason to go after Sadaam Hussein - his dad couldn't get the job done, or tried and failed - and so now the responsibility falls onto his shoulders.... W needs a reason to go after Sadaam - and knowing that his approval rating pretty much sucks going into his presidency because pretty much half of the country already didn't want him to be president... he knows that he needs good reason to go after Sadaam - something that the country will jump behind.... There's a theory that friends and relatives of Osama bin Laden were allowed to leave the country, more importantly fly out of the country, just days after 9/11 when the rest of the country was grounded and we sent many airlines into bankrupcy.... why is this? They say because Osama bin Laden would not become our main target... he was merely a facade for the real reason it became OK that 9/11 happened. W knew about 9/11 and allowed it to happen because he needed good reason to enter into a war against Sadaam, knowing that without this reason the country would not back him a larger reason that the country could jump behind.

Now, like I said, I haven't taken on these conspiracies as personal opinion, I generally don't accept conspiracy theories at all - but I just thought they were interesting to think about and gave me something to do during class. If anything, conspiracy theories in general can teach us that we can't take everything we see at face value. We need to be proactive citizens in obtaining information from unbaised sources, understanding an issue and our own government from all sides, including the sides that don't make us as US citizens look very good. We need to be unpartial to understanding our actions and realize that we are part of a larger global community that is striving to exist in peace and that sometimes we make mistakes, while at others we also affect change in huge ways, but that in the end we should all be striving for a goal of peace - something which I pray we will all see one day.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Live like you were dying....

As we grow up, we learn that even the one person that wasn't supposed to ever let you down probably will. You will have your heart broken probably more than once and it's harder every time. You'll break hearts too, so remember how it felt when yours was broken. You'll fight with your best friend. You'll blame a new love for things an old one did. You'll cry because time is passing too fast, and you'll eventually lose someone you love. So take too many pictures, laugh too much, and love like you've never been hurt because every sixty seconds you spend upset is a minute of happiness you'll never get back.

In the Spirit of MLK Jr

I cannot claim to understand or even know how MLK Jr felt about homosexuality in the church, or how his theological reflections would have been received today. However, it is in his spirit, a spirit of unity and equality that I write this entry.
Recently on the Disciples Young Adult Listserv a question has been raised on how the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) should act toward homosexuality in the church. There have been many entries (over 75 in just 3 days) for both sidees of the discussion, theological reflections, Biblical interpretations, personal stories and much more. Upfront and in the open, I am pro-equality of all people, I believe all people are children of God, made in God's image and that we all are beautifully and wonderfully made exactly the way we are. I wrote the following to the listserv explaining my congregation that I serve here in Lexington. Woodland Christian Church has not taken on the label of being and "Open & Affirming" church, being open and affirming of all people's life choices, but I know that we, at Woodland, promote that in our ministries.... Here is my entry...
"I am an associate at a church that is not necessarily considered open and affirming, but at the same time we most certainly are. We have not specifically taken that label, however, although I've never actually counted, I would be willing to bet that around 60% of the active members in my church are homosexual, most of whom are in committed and loving relationships. After working there I've come to embrace the reason we, as a congregation, have chosen NOT to accept the O&A label and can see that some aspects of this explanation may also apply to the DOC greater church in general. Our congregation does not want LGBTQ (Lesbian/Gay/Bisexual/Transgender/Questioning) ministries to be its only ministry. Having a LGBTQ community within your church isn't much different than having a women's fellowship group, or a men's prayer group, a young adult group or even a youth group. All of these things, age, sex/gender, race etc are all demographics that can articulate the make-up of your congregation, but by no means can they place a definition on your church or its ministries. A particular demographic that can develop a support group within your congregation is much different than allowing the Open &Affirming label to dictate the only type of ministry your church serves. Our congregants, of any and all sexualities, genders, ages and races are an amazing group of people that reach out to our community and take on all sorts of social justice issues within our community, which happens to include LGBTQ discussions every now and again, but that's not necessarily the main focus of the ministry of our church. We as a congregation are much more concerned about other things going on in the community than how the community wants to define the demographics of our congregation. While others spend time trying to define our congregation, you can find us PARTICIPATING in Habitat for Humanity and ACTING in events like the MLK Jr Unity Breakfast.... TAKING ACTION. The main focus of our ministries is not to define our demographics and conform them to society. How are we supposed to be welcoming the LGBTQ community and say, "no, you're not different, or queer, or unusual" in the way most of society has labeled you......if we ourselves, label our churches in a different and special manner by saying we are O&A? Just because we offer open arms to all people who wish to worship within our community doesn't make us special, I think we are simply trying to live faithfully by welcoming all of God's children. Granted, I do not want to negate the experience a LGBTQ person has living in the world today. I can only assume that it is more difficult for them to operate in this heterosexually engaged world, than it is for me, a heterosexual individual. I can only imagine it would feel like trying to use right-handed scissors all the time, and wondering why people tell you that your cutting is incorrect or why it doesn't work out properly. I say I cannot negate this in the same way that I would be treated differently if I were an African-American or Asian-American living in my life.... So, at the same time, without sounding like I'm ripping off MLK Jr., merely in the same spirit, I have a dream that one day the difference between me and my LGBTQ friends is not treated any differently than the way people view my haircolor.... that it is merely an aspect of who I am, but does not change the person, of who I am inside. I pray that although our sexuality defines who we are to a certain extent, that it does not decieve others from seeing who we all are individually, as beautiful and wonderful children of God, created in God's image."

Saturday, January 14, 2006

And I'm from St. Louis?

What kind of beer are you? The Beer Quiz...
Miller Lite
MILLER LITE: You're not pretentious, but you have
certain expectations of the people you spend
time with. You're a fun person, though, and an
unconscious flirt. People enjoy being around
you, even if you don't treat them kindly. A
beer which is an only choice for some, but
liked all around, for a person who is picky
themselves but well regarded.

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

"Listen Christians"

I was hungry
and you formed a humanties club, and you discussed my hunger, Thank You.
I was imprisioned
and you crept off quietly, to your chapel in the cellar, and prayed for my release.
I was naked
and in your mind, You debated the morality of my appearance.
I was sick
And you knelt, and thanked God for your health
I was homeless
and you preached to me, of the spiritual shelter of the love of God.
I was lonely
and you left me alone, to pray for me.
You seem so holy, so close to God
But I'm still very hungry
And lonely
And Cold
So where have you prayers gone?
What have they done?
What does it profit a person to page through a book of prayers, when the rest of the world is crying for help?

Monday, January 02, 2006

I can officially say...

...that I've been kicked out of class in grad school. I've never been kicked out of any class in my entire life - but I got kicked out of class today when I told my professor I had the flu. Ok, so I didn't really get kicked out of class, and I'm not near as rebellious as I would like to think.... but doesn't that count as getting kicked out of class? It's such a small community and small class size that I guess he figured that I shouldn't pass around the virus to the other 3 people - so he gave me the syllabus and sent me home! I'm such a rebel!

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Happy New Year Laura

I never realized how great your roommates/boyfriends were when you are sick until you get sick while you live by yourself and are single.... I got the flu yesterday - Happy New Year Laura - and I was only so lucky to get it while my friend Andrea happened to be at my house. We were planning to go to dinner and instead of going, she tucked me in, checked my temperature, got me some Sprite and then returned after dinner to do the same thing over again. I can't be thankful enough for that!! It's just so nice to have someone there to help you, even with the stupidest things like putting the phone by your head and making sure the remote has batteries so that you can lay there in agony and wish you didn't feel like your insides were going to come out. Was that graphic enough for you? ;) This is the first time I've ever lived alone alone - without roommates and so it's nice to have fabulous friends that are willing to drive over and check on you, as long as you promise to leave your door unlocked so they can get into your apartment building. :)