Friday, October 29, 2004

What is LOVE?

A group of professionals posted this question to a group of 4 to 8 year olds: "What does love mean?" The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined.

When my grandma got arthritis, she couldn't bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandpa does it for her now all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That's love.
Rebecca- age 8

When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You just know that your name is safe in their mouths. Billy- age 4

Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving Cologne and they go out and smell each other. Kari- age 5

Love is what makes you smile when you're tired. Terri- age 4

Love is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK. Danny- age 7

Love is what's in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen. Bobby- age 7 (wow!)

Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it every day. Noelle- age 7

Love is when mommy gives daddy the best piece of chicken. Elaine- age 5

Love is when mommy sees daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford. Chris- age 7

Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day. Mary Ann- age 4

When you love somebody, your eyelashes go up and down and little stars come out of you. Karen- age 7

You really shouldn't say "I LOVE YOU" unless you mean it. But if you mean it, you should say it a lot. People forget. Jessica- age 8

And the winner was a 4 year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly man who had just lost his wife. When the child saw the man cry, the little boy went over into the man's yard and climbed on top of the man's lap and just sat there. When the boy's mother asked him what he'd said to the neighbor, the little boy said, "Nothing, I just helped him cry."

Thursday, October 28, 2004

Memories from Granite State Challenge

Looking back over the Granite State Challenge practices and games, there were so many funny moments.

KEVIN- 4, Smith, SpaceBall, the Duracell bunny, non-astronaut people, elephants, Sesame Street theme, A-Rod impersonation, did I mention I'm epileptic?
DEVON- Reagan's alive, dirty Canadian vs. dirty Yank, five-star General Mom pulled rank
ERIK- pray for Mr. Johnson, A-Rod impersonation
MR. JOHNSON- pray for Erik
JOSH- Mike Eisenhower
ME- Led Zeppelin

Wednesday, October 27, 2004

Do Not Worry

"Therefore, I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying "What shall we eat?" or "What shall we drink?" or "What shall we wear?" For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."
-Matthew 6: 25-34


"Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and supplication, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus."
-Philippians 4:6-7


Thought du Jour: When You Lose

A quote for the day:
"You have learned something. That always feels at first as if you had lost something."
-George Bernard Shaw, Major Barbara

Today my school's Granite State Challenge team lost in the semifinal round of the competition. Although we knew that we might lose, we did not expect that we would lose in the way that we did. We were ahead for Round 1, for Round 2, for Round 3, and for most of Round 4 too. Then, in the last five minutes of the game, the other team pulled ahead and tied it up. Then, in literally the last second of the game, they got the final question right- just as the buzzer rang to end the game. The final score was 295-285. We were in shock. Never in a million years would I have predicted that outcome. To their credit, the other team were wonderful sports about it. They reached down immediately and shook the hands of all our players, the coaches and alternates congratulated us on a wonderful game, etc. But we were absolutely stunned. Two of our guys, Erik and Kevin, leaned back hard on the wall behind them almost simultaneously. How we felt was beyond words. The look on their faces made me want to go over and just hug them, tell them how wonderful they were.
The same thing happened on the bus home. We were analyzing the game, as we almost always do, but it was different this time. We weren't analyzing what we did well as much, but we we didn't do that could have prospectively won us the game. The atmosphere was, once again, almost indescribable. We had played a wonderful game, a spectacular game- but we lost. We weren't mad, we weren't upset or distraught--just disappointed. Not in how we played, but in the fact that we lost. Something inside us just knotted up.
But still, we remember how we started out not wanting to do anything other than try. And we exceeded all expectations so far beyond anything we anticipated that we can have no regrets. Indeed, I sit here remembering William Borden, who wrote in his Bible, "No Reserves. No Retreat. No Regret" at different times in his life. "No reserves" when he was just starting out. "No retreat" when he was getting discouraged or pushed by family and friends to go back on what he was doing. "No regret" right before he died.
We've developed a real camaraderie on the team, too. We're all friends now. Today, when we got back to school, a guy met us in the lobby and when we told him what happened, he went "Erik!" because Erik is basically our ringer, our star. And we jumped on him for that, told him that we couldn't have expected any more of him than what he had already done. It's a loyalty that has developed out of the situation we've been in together. It's something special, that I can really treasure and appreciate.
Now we look to the future. None of us really wants to just say, "We're done," and quit. We're going to grovel and really try to get on the team next year, but in the meantime we're not quitting. We're going to see about going into another Quiz Bowl, somewhere else in the state. We go forward.

Sunday, October 17, 2004

Thought du Jour: Wisdom

A quote for the day:
"Who is wise and understanding among you? Let him show it by his good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom...But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial, and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness."
~James 3:13, 17-18

Pray for wisdom- there are few greater gifts you can be given.

Saturday, October 16, 2004

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #30:

Why is it called "Independence Day" if you are forced to spend it with your family?

Thought du Jour: Blessings

All right, all right! So I haven't posted in a long time! But I've been really busy!
Yeah, I know I say that a lot, but it's true.


A quote for the day:
"Better to lose count while naming your blessings than to lose your blessings by counting your troubles."

Blessings. I can't even begin to count all the blessings that I've been given. My family, who have been an immense blessing to me, although often the old saying rings true: "Family- can't live with 'em, can't live without 'em." My friends- they've blessed me beyond measure. Whether old or new, they are worth more than gold to me. My school- yes, even math. ALL my teachers have influenced me enormously, and most have been huge blessings on my life. God blessed me by placing people in my life who...well, words fail me when I try to describe them. And those don't even begin to scrape the surface of the blessings He has given me. Hopefully He will help me to be a blessing to those around me.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Thought du Jour: Homecoming Week vol. 3

THURSDAY: Decades Day! Each class dressed up as if they were from a different decade. My class got the 1970s. Soo...we all dug out our fringe hippie stuff from our parents' seventies days, got really gigantic wigs, and kicked back and had fun. Between classes, they played oldies music over the intercom, like James Taylor's Fire and Rain, and Michael Jackson's Thriller. The other classes were the 1950s, 1960s, and 1980s. They had some pretty incredible costumes. Lots of bright colors and poodle skirts around school today. Even though I wasn't dressed up in my Canadian gear, I was still getting teased gently about being Canadian. Especially the guys at GSC practice. :-) It's great, they're awesome. We have a lot of fun.

I won't be at school tomorrow for SuperHero Day/Clash Day, or at the homecoming dance on Saturday, but I'll post notes about those as soon as I hear about them from my friends!

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #29:

Either I've been missing something or nothing has been going on.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Thought du Jour: Homecoming Week vol. 2

More on Homecoming 2004!

WEDNESDAY: Pick A Country Day! Dress up as a country of your choice! I saw soo many countries represented around school today. India, Jamaica, Scotland, Ireland, the USA (some people are soo creative- NOT!) I personally went as Canada. I dressed up in all my Canadian gear and flaunted my heritage! It was great- at Granite State Challenge practice, just about everyone on the team teased me about being a "dirty rotten Canadian". I, in return, called them "dirty rotten Yanks". We have so much fun. Anyway, after school I stuck around to watch the girls soccer team play. Unfortunately, we lost. 3-1. So disappointing. But life goes on, and I'm sure we'll win another time. The girls played great, but the other team kept trying to break the legs of our best player. Terrible sportsmanship. Just because they don't have anyone like her doesn't mean that they have the right to take her out.

More coming up on tomorrow---Decades Day!

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #28:

Don't accept rides from strange men, and remember that all men are strange.

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Thought du Jour: Homecoming Week vol. 1

I love this time of year! For one glorious week we get to dress down every day in various themes, listen to music over the P.A. between classes, attend pep rallies, bonfires, home soccer & volleyball games, and a dance, and just generally kick back and relax!
Here's a play-by-play on the week so far:

MONDAY: Pajama Day! I love how they put it on a Monday morning, since they know everyone is totally exhausted then anyway. We wandered around school all day in our pajamas. My friend Shannon even fell asleep in Spanish class!
TUESDAY: School Colors Day! Today we donned our maroon and gray gear- all the stuff we could find- and showed our school pride! We had a pep rally too, and played some games and saw all the sports teams, and listened to some great music from the jazz band. That afternoon, I went to watch the boy's soccer game. We won, 4-0! It was a fantastic game! Then I went to Burger King with my friends to hang out and warm up until the bonfire started. The flames went about 50 feet up in the air for about 20 minutes, before the fire collapsed on itself and some grassfires started. Thankfully, they went out before we had to call the fire department back. Then we just hung out for two hours until it went out. There were a few games organized, like Red Rover, but mostly it was just socializing.

I'll post more in a couple of days!

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Leaving the Chrisisms behind for a's one from yours truly!

We should learn to convert English measurement to metric measurement in your head. It's the most sensible system. But we're not in a country that uses it! We're in an unsensible country!

Sunday, October 03, 2004

Thought du Jour: Come to Me

A quote for the day:

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." ~Matthew 11:28-30

Speaks for itself, if you ask me. One of my favorite verses.

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #27:

If by true you mean false and by false you mean true, then I suppose I'd have to agree.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Thought du Jour: Like a child

A quote for the day:
"But Jesus called the children to him and said, "Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these." ~Luke 18:16

I love little kids. They have so much joy in everything. They may not always be the most polite, or the smartest, or the friendliest, but they still see the joy in everything. They think McDonald's is a four-star restaurant for goodness' sake. If you think that, you've got to take joy in the little things.

If you're like me, then you know it's impossible to be in a bad mood when you're around little kids. You could be having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, but if a little kid comes up to you and gives you a huge hug, or you are holding a baby and they go to sleep on your shoulder, then you can't possibly be upset. A feeling of peace just flows over you, and you get completely relaxed.

It's a feeling that can't be compared to any other.

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #26:

Insomnia is the triumph of mind over mattress.

Richard Connell : The Most Dangerous Game

Richard Connell : The Most Dangerous Game:

"'OFF THERE to the right--somewhere--is a large island,' said Whitney.' It's rather a mystery--'"

A great short story that I read last year...very exciting and engaging!

Friday, October 01, 2004

Thought du Jour: Faith

A quote for the day:

"For He will command His angels concerning you, to guard you in all your ways; they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone." ~Psalm 91: 11-12

Life is all about risks and it requires you to jump. At some point you've got to close your eyes, and step out on faith. Not only must you trust your instincts, you must trust God. You must believe in His promises, like the one above- that He will look after you.

Faith requires a lot from you, but it is so, so worth it. You're in for the ride of your life if you accept Him.

Ran-dumb Thought du Jour

Chrisism #25:

My mom always said, "Keep your chin up." That's how I ran into a wall.