Thursday, December 24, 2009

100 Years

I'm considering this song for my senior slide show. I would use the first minute and a half of music, and then it would fade out for my speech and time to say thank you. Let me know what you think!

500 Days of Summer




















I never made it to the theater this summer to see this movie, but I'm excited to watch it tomorrow during our trip to Wichita.

Breakdown in Borders

I'm sure you're wondering why we are smiling in this picture if the title of this post is "Breakdown in Borders." The simple answer, is that this photo is after the whole ordeal had passed. I must first state that Becka and I are not normal girls. As much fun as finger-nail painting and giggling sometimes sounds, we would rather have our eye lashes plucked out. After three hours of being in a mall and an hour in Borders with nothing found, we lost it. I am still convinced that Becka was already on the verge of tears, though she would never admit it. In my infinite knowledge, I whipped out my phone and called Miss April (aka the goddess of books). She instantly saved us from our distress by recommending "The Noticer." We dried our, um, tears, pulled ourselves together, and went to find our holy grail of a book! After this, of course, we were able to find four other books to add to our shopping cart. Becka is currently reading it, and sends me paragraph text messages every day. She's bringing it to me on the 30th, and then I will be able to write a review of my own. We've decided to continue this trading of books. So far we've shared "My Sisters Keeper," "Eat Pray Love," and now "The Noticer." (I'm sure Becka will fill in anything I've forgotten.) This concludes the tale of "Becka and Megan's Infinite Adventures."

The Other Boleyn Girl

After three weeks of this movie sitting on my desk, I finally found a free block of time which I could use to watch it. My senior year history studies covered this time period, and my mother approved of me watching this "big girl movie." They did an excellent job choosing the actors and actresses for this film. The parts were played wonderfully, and the story line was easy to follow. As far as accuracy is concerned, it was on and off. But for Hollywood, I suppose it wasn't too bad. As a Catholic, it was interesting to view the other side of the story. Kolbe tends to be slightly prejudiced when it comes to topics of the Catholic Church (not that I'm complaining!), but it's nice to have a rounded view point. It clearly depicts the seduction story, so I can't safely recommend it. If anyone has seen the movie, I am interested in if the ending is what actually happened to Anne Boleyn?

Helpless Romantic...

Someone added a new application to Facebook that lets you get statistics from the past 5 months of status updates. The word I've used the most is "Love," with a total of 90 times. This brought a warm feeling to my heart on Christmas Eve!

Last Minute Shopping

David and I ventured out into the snow this afternoon to make a last-minute purchase of Starwars II & III for Reid's Christmas present. We were pleased to discover that Hastings had a buy one used get one for $1 sale going on today! In addition to Reid's gift, I also purchased a little something for my mother and myself. I won't share it today, in case someone decides to check my blog last minute ;)

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Dan In Real Life


Becka and I watched this movie last night. We got kicked out of the hotel room, so we asked the receptionist to give us a blanket and we sat in the dining room on the floor and watched our movie. I have mixed feelings about it. I would recommend it to my friends, but being with someone who makes me laugh probably made the movie better. You could tell the ending from the beginning, but it was not a waste of time. I've been a fan of Steve Carell since "Get Smart," and he did a wonderful job in this film.

Weekend Away

Becka got to come with us to this weekend's hockey games in St. Louis. We went shopping (which didn't kill her), watched Grey's, and laughed.
This was us shopping for boots. Don't worry, with much effort, I talked her out of the dead animal on her feet in this picture.













Here is Becka making fun of my attempt to find a winter hat.



















This was when we gave up on finding a book in Borders. Thank goodness Miss April had her phone on and could assist us in this endeavor!
Early morning hockey game hair!!


















I'm very thankful that Becka was able to come along. She got me Season 1 of Grey's Anatomy and an awesome coffee mug for Christmas! And even though it wasn't perfect, it's better to be dark and twisty together than apart :)
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Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Senior Song

Being home schooled, I get to have my own slide show at graduation with pictures of myself and a song. However, this is going to be a long, painful process; so I'm letting you all know now. Music is one of my favorite things in the world, and therefor picking just one song, is going to be a huge problem. I want a female singer, and would like something with piano. Since it is graduation, it should probably be a somewhat happy song (another problem). I'm all for crying, and I like a well-written love song; but that doesn't work so well for this event. Let me know if you have any ideas!

Joy Williams

http://www.youtube.com/user/joywilliamsmusic#p/u I have completely fallen in love with her. She's also in another band called "The Civil Wars." Both ep's are on iTunes and they are worth every dollar. So far my favorites are "Poison and Wine" by The Civil Wars and "Sunny Day" by Joy Williams. (Senior song?)

Trustful Surrender

I was on a great roll with Theology today. This year's course is extra (as well as History) because I already have enough credits. Thankfully Kolbe understands that this is true with all their students, and has put together something special for seniors. The last year of high school is filled with decisions and busy times, and your prayer life is an easy thing to let drop off. They started us off with reading St. Francis de Sales' book "Introduction to the Devout Life," and this week we're reading "Trustful Surrender to Divine Providence." These are some of the notes I drew from the reading:

The Lord says: you would have no power over me if it had not been given to you from above.
We trust doctors to cut us open, and even pay them to do it! But yet we don't trust God?

The Lord says to Zebedee: You know not what you ask -- O blind of heart, your ignorance saddens me. Let me manage your affairs and look after your interests. I know what you need better than you do yourselves. If I paid heed to what you think you need, you would have been hopelessly ruined long ago.

Us not trusting God is crude after all He's done for us, and continues to do. When the pain seems like too much, it's because God was meant to carry that cross, not us.

Giving everything to God is the ultimate freedom. Fear no longer exists for us. We will be constant, unchangeable, and endless.

The Holy Spirit says "Blessed are those who suffer." Whoever asks shall receive. God has promised us, so why do we doubt? We can ask God for anything, but the request will effect the answer He gives. Solomon asked for wisdom, and this was good in the Lord's eyes. Do not be shallow, but bold in request. Never stop asking or praying. God is outside of time. What if someone prayed for the same thing every day for their entire life? That would please God greatly! Christians have become apathetic. We pray "God give me patience," but instead we should pray "God! Let me detest with my entire being losing my temper!"

Thursday, December 3, 2009

2010 Masterpiece Classics Schedule

This is the Schedule for Masterpiece Theater which airs on PBS.
Cranford - Dec. 20 (part 1) Dec. 27 (part 2) Jan. 3 (part 3)
Return Cranford - Jan 10 (part 1) Jan 17 (part 2)
Emma (new adaption) - Jan 24 (part 1) Jan 31 (part 2) Feb 7 (part 3)
Northanger Abbey - Feb. 14
Persuasion - Feb. 21
The 39 Steps - Feb 28
Sharpe - Mar. 28 (Shapre's Challenge) Apr. 4 (Starpe's Peril)
The Diary of Anne Frank - Apr 11
Small Island - April 18 (part 1) Apr 25 (part 2)

For more information visit http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/masterpiece/schedule/index.html

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thoughts on Thanksgiving

I have a huge problem with getting stuck in the stereotype category of "senioritis" since I happen to be in my senior year of high school. I believe the biggest mistake young people make is trying too hard to "find themselves." Our culture tells us that we need to take a year off of college, or travel the world to find out who we really are. If there is anything I can say that I've learned this year, it's that staying where you are and diving into Christ is the best place to find everything you're looking for.
I've been so blessed to have great events that have assisted me with my journey. I'm still attending Bible Study with some home schoolers, and it's been even more of a blessing to be able to take Reid along with me this year. We're using the Focus on the Family's "Truth Project" videos for this year, and they have been extremely interesting. We've studied different world views, and ways to live in society.
I'm learning every day that I have so much more to learn. Tim had a great way of explaining this. He held his arms shoulder length apart, thus making two sides of a box. He said to imagine that this box contains all the knowledge that anyone in the world has ever learned, or ever will learn. Now imagine how much of this knowledge you will learn in your life. Makes you feel pretty small, right? People have dedicated their lives to a single topic, learning everything they can about it. But maybe a few years later another person will find a missing piece of information that makes the old information meaningless. Scientists are constantly discovering new cures and medicines. Remember in Jane Austen's day when they thought bleeding would cure people of their illness? Now we know that this in fact makes it worse!
I find myself disturbingly immersed in college applications. As my dad likes to remind me, when he went to college he just told Kansas State he was coming and sent them a check! My how the times have changed... The University of Dallas requires four short essays, one long essay, a letter from my teacher, AND a letter from an outside influence! This was the first of my undertakings, and the process still hasn't ended. I'm flying down to Dallas on Wednesday for an interview with the French Department. I know it's a lot of work, and at 11pm, I'm wondering if I should be spending more time on other schools, but right now this is where God wants me to be. I think the people who regret their college experience didn't include God in their decision. Just like in some marriages, we make the decisions and then ask God to bless them. Oh how great the world's joy would be if we reversed this process!
We we're blessed enough to have the National Catholic Youth Conference come to Kansas City last weekend. My mom took a group of six boys and girls down for the Thursday through Saturday events. Jason Evert and his wife were two of the main speakers, and I was moved by their talks. Anyone who knows me knows that the subject of Love is one of my favorites. I would love to give chastity talks in the future. After waiting in line for about an hour, I finally got a signed copy of their book "If You Really Loved Me." I'm still reading it, so I'll post more when I finish it.
French class is still going good, and I've decided to continue taking it in the spring. There are some really great people in my class, and we have a great coffee study group started.
Finally, I'd like to share my thoughts on Thanksgiving. Before this week I've only told this story to one person, but I felt like my Blog was a fitting place to share it. I'm against most holidays. In fact Halloween is about the only one that I fully understand. If you need a day to tell the people in your life how much you love them, you don't deserve to tell them. If you need a day to be thankful, you don't deserve to say the words! Understand what I mean? So for everyone that reads this, I am just as thankful for you all today as I was yesterday, and as I will be tomorrow. You are all wonderful people, and I've been so blessed to have you in my life.
I hope this catches everyone up on what's been going on in my life, and that you had a wonderful and blessed Thanksgiving!

Dear John



About once a week I try to look through the new trailers posted on www.apple.com/trailers just to stay informed. This one was recently posted, and I knew when I started crying just from the trailer, that it was a book I wanted to read. I finished reading it in about a day, and I'm still astounded by how well it portrays what love actually love is. The ability to do what is best for the other person, even when that's the hardest thing for your life. I have much more to say about this book, but since I've currently let Becka borrow it, I'll have to post more at a later time.
"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others."

Monday, November 2, 2009

The Abolition of Man (and Woman)

From "The Catholic Key" newspaper, by Benjamin Wiker....
In 1943, C.S. Lewis published his masterful The Abolition of Man, a book that is far more profound than its short length (130 pages) might suggest. Lewis’ central concern is the use of technology to control, manipulate and reconstruct human nature. The book was written in the shadow of the Nazi war machine, one of whose aims was to create a master race through eugenic breeding and the elimination of “unfit” races and individuals.
But Lewis’ warnings were directed at a deeper evil, of which Nazism was only a morbid and significant sign.
“The final stage is come when Man by eugenics, by pre-natal conditioning, and by an education and propaganda based on a perfect applied psychology, has obtained full control over himself,” he wrote. “Human nature will be the last part of Nature to surrender to Man. … The battle will indeed be won. But who, precisely, will have won it?”
This victory will come about through politics, for “the man-moulders of the new age will be armed with the powers of an omnicompetent state and an irresistible scientific technique: We shall get at last a race of conditioners who really can cut out all posterity in what shape they please.”
We are not surprised to find Lewis’ dark prophecies now being fulfilled through the fantasies of genetic manipulation — a small number of scientists funded by a small number of heads of corporations attempting to determine the future shape of the new humanity.
But the real evil is not the manipulation itself. That is, rather, the effect. The real evil is the horrifying change in outlook, the insidious transformation of the substance of the will that occurs when we suddenly regard all natural limits as momentary obstacles that technology can remove. That is what gives the devastating sting to moral relativism today — the notion that human nature is not the inviolable beginning point of our moral reasoning but merely presents us with one more set of obstacles for technology to overcome.
To cite one example: What could be more natural than the distinction between male and female — a distinction that we share with animals and even, in a real sense, with plants? This distinction is the source of marriage as a natural institution, making it the origin of all moral claims about sexuality, the family and marriage itself. It would be hard to imagine “Thou shalt not commit adultery” if there were no such thing as male and female and human beings somehow produced children through means other than their union.
But what if we suddenly looked at human reproduction as a problem subject to technological solutions? What if we began to look at male and female as concepts to be abolished? We’d soon find that the natural distinctions of male and female, and marriage itself (and all its attendant morality), would become obsolete. Marriage would become meaningless as men became superfluous through the advance of reproductive technology; as women became unessential through cloning technology; and as the mass of humanity became dispensable through genetic manipulation, trait selection (and de-selection) and abortion.
Earlier this fall, scientists announced the creation of one offspring by three parents: sperm from the male, an egg from a female and additional DNA material from a third female. This “advance,” now applied to monkeys, will soon enough be available for human beings. What then is the moral meaning of “adultery” once this becomes as acceptable a practice as in vitro fertilization?
The effect of the abolition of male and female will be, and in fact already is, the unraveling of morality. Once the sexual union of a man and a woman becomes just one way to make a human being, then it is not the way to make a human being. Heterosexuality loses its privileged status in defining what way we are to be sexual. The natural gives way to the artificial, and what was once a natural standard defining sexuality becomes a historical artifact and (at best) a quaint option for sexual antiquarians.
Because human beings live in society, and society makes laws, this great transformation by technical power must find its way into law. If children can be had by a number of other means, then laws designed to limit marriage to one male and one female would be like laws designed to limit transportation to horses.
The abolition of man and woman is part of a larger cultural revolution, a fact seen quite clearly in the active drive to make male and female obsolete in the culture, as well. First, there is a kind of relentless spirit of androgyny pushed in our intellectual culture, where manliness is actively discouraged and disparaged and womanliness is taken to be a kind of servitude from which women must be delivered. The goal seems to be to make men more like women and women more like men, so that, by their eventual blending together, they become indistinguishable. The result, of course, is that male and female become morally insignificant distinctions in our minds.
The insignificance feeds the notion that there is really nothing wrong with endless technical manipulating of our sexuality and reproduction.
But there is another related sense of obsolescence because the spirit of androgyny takes flesh in the actual culture and through real social and educational institutions and policies. If the distinct aims of manhood and womanhood, fatherhood and motherhood are removed as the proper and good goal of boys and girls, then what, precisely, do boys and girls aim at? They are each taught to aim at the exact same target: becoming self-supporting, individual moneymakers.
The guiding assumption that a boy becomes a man precisely in becoming a husband and provider for his family has been replaced by an entirely indistinct, androgynous image of a large boy making money by himself, for himself, and for the satisfaction of his own pleasures. The guiding assumption that a girl becomes a woman by becoming a wife and mother has been replaced by the same indistinct, androgynous image of individual moneymaker working by herself, for herself, and for the satisfaction of her own pleasures.
Little wonder, given this image, that when men and women do decide to become a couple, the marriage would have as little moral meaning to them as divorce. Nor are we surprised to find the cultural push for androgynous terms like “partner,” “significant other” and “caregiver” replacing such morally meaty and precise words as husband, wife, father and mother.
Perhaps there is far, far more to those words in Genesis than we imagined. “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” Here lies the boundary keeping us from all moral chaos. Once it is crossed and then crossed out, all things are “without form and void.”

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

"Lost" by Michael Buble

A sentimental, self-penned ballad “Lost,” co-written with Chang and Canadian singer-songwriter Jann Arden. “It’s an anthem for star-crossed lovers,” Bublé says. “Sometimes relationships don’t work out because love isn’t enough, but that doesn’t mean you have to discard the person. There is a way to end a relationship and still be there when they need you. That’s basically what it’s about.”

More on Michael Buble

Michael Steven Bublé, born 9 September 1975, is a Canadian singer and actor. He has won several awards, including a Grammy and multiple Juno Awards. His first album reached the top ten in Lebanon, the UK and his home country of Canada. He found worldwide commercial success with his 2005 album "It's Time," and his 2007 album "Call Me Irresponsible" was an even bigger success, reaching number one on the Canadian album chart, the U.S. Billboard 200 chart, the Australian ARIA Albums Chart, and the European charts. Bublé has sold more than 20 million albums worldwide.
On 11 December 2008, Bublé became part of the ownership group for the Vancouver Giants, a major junior ice hockey team.

Okay now we will love him forever!!!

Michael Buble

My mom and I completely adore him! So much so, that my mom found this information about his songs, and I wanted to share it with everyone here :)
Michael Bublé was engaged to long-time girlfriend Debbie Timuss, a stage actress, dancer, and singer. Timuss was listed as one of the dedicatees in Bublé's self-titled album "Michael Bublé" and "It's Time," and as background vocalist on "It's Time." While away in Italy, Bublé co-wrote the hit single "Home" for Timuss. Timuss was also featured in the music video for "Home." Their engagement ended in November 2005. Their breakup inspired Bublé to co-write the hit original song "Lost." During an appearance at Australian television's Logie Awards in 2005, he met British actress Emily Blunt backstage. She also provided background vocals on the cover of "Me and Mrs. Jones" on the album "Call Me Irresponsible." The hit original song "Everything" was penned by Bublé for her. Later, Bublé's publicist confirmed that he had broken up with Blunt in 2008.
As of May 2009, he is dating Luisana Lopilato a famous Argentinian actress and model.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Soccer Games at the Seminary


Conception Seminary hosted a soccer tournament this weekend for a few seminaries to come and compete.

Forget and Not Slow Down

My friend Tim was home from college on Fall Break last week, so we planned a small road trip to KC to see RelientK at the Beaumont Club. They just released their 6th album two weeks ago, so it was great to hear their new songs. Counting the Warped Tour, and the Granada in Lawrence KS, this is the third time Tim and I have seen them. They seem to get better and better each time.
Tim's favorite TVshow is "The Office," and apparently the lead singer loves it just as much. He's written a spin-off of the theme song, and I must admit he did a pretty good job.

Brand New Eyes

Paramore released a new CDlast week, so Reid and I rushed over to buy it. Much to our great excitement Border's was having their Educators Discount weekend, and we saved 30% off everything!
With this great news, we also bought the new RelientK, A Fine Frenzy, and Regina Spektor. I am thrilled and suddenly have a million reasons to be in my car with the CDplayer :)

Friday, October 2, 2009

Gifts

- A homily by Fr. Anthony Ouellette

Imagine making a gift for someone and pouring your blood, sweat, tears, time, your very self into this gift. It becomes a representation of you. You give this gift to the person you made it for, and they take the gift and walk away, without so much as a thank you. They are so enthralled with the gift that they forget the giver.

God gives people to us, friends and family. They greatest gifts receive in our lives. Sometimes we come to love them and forget their Maker, we appreciate them without appreciating Him Who gave them to us. And sometimes, God takes them away from us, because He loves us so much, so that we will remember Him.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

"Coming soon, a FoxBooks superstore and the end of civilization as you know it."

"You've Got Mail" will always be a favorite movie of mine. I feel that it is my personal calling in life to post these quotes every few months, so that maybe I will convert some of you to my views on the subject.

Quotes:
I like Patricia. I *love* Patricia. Patricia makes COFFEE nervous.

The whole purpose of places like Starbucks is for people with no decision-making ability whatsoever to make six decisions just to buy one cup of coffee. Short, tall, light, dark, caf, decaf, low-fat, non-fat, etc. So people who don't know what the hell they're doing or who on earth they are can, for only $2.95, get not just a cup of coffee but an absolutely defining sense of self: Tall. Decaf. Cappuccino.

Because we're going to sell them cheap books and legal addictive stimulants. In the meantime, we'll just put up a big sign: "Coming soon, a FoxBooks superstore and the end of civilization as you know it."

I think he's married. Married three kids.

She was the nanny?

I'm going to get eucalyptus candles cuz it makes my apartment smell Moss-a.

Nelson Fox: Perfect. Keep those West-Side liberal nuts, psudo-intellectuals...
Joe Fox: Readers, Dad. They're called readers.
Nelson Fox: Don't do that, son. Don't romanticize them.

Kathleen Kelly: He couldn't possibly be the Rooftop Killer!
Christina Plutzker: Remember when you thought Frank might be the Unibomber?
Kathleen Kelly: That was different

Fall

I'm not one of those crazy environmentalists who think that the world is slowly coming to an end and that the only way to stop it is to buy a million of those recycled bags. But I do wish our culture was more aware of the world around us.
Fall is my favorite season. And although it may be for the slightly morbid reason that it reminds us of death; it's given to us in such a beautiful way.
Our culture has become engrossed in thinking that death equals the color black. But who said this was truth? God gave us orange and yellow and red and brown; these are the true colors of death.
I love pulling my boots out of the back of the closet and my light blue vest with the soft fur inside. I love chilly mornings with coffee and "A Tale of Two Cities." I love the feeling you get when you walk into an ice rink that is colder than outside.
I truly believe that Joe Fox in "You've Got Mail" summed it up quite well in saying:
"Don't you love New York in the fall? It makes me want to buy school supplies. I would send you a bouquet of newly sharpened pencils if I knew your name and address."

Fall quote

Fall is God's way of showing us that death can be beautiful.

The Cracked Pot
























An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck.

One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water.

At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full.

For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water..

Of course, the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishments.

But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own
imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do.

After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream.

"I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house.'

The old woman smiled, 'Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?'

'That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them.'

For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table.

Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house.'

Each of us has our own unique flaw. But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding.

You've just got to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.

SO, to all of my cracked pot friends, have a great day and remember to smell the flowers on your side of the path!

Seeing Double

The Royals beat the Twins today, but that's OK. I took Andrew to the game for his 18th birthday -- here's my twin brothers who wanted to say "Happy Birthday, Wallace!"
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Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Starbucks VIA Challenge

Drop by a participating Starbucks from October 2nd-5th to take the Starbucks VIA Challenge and they'll give you a free tall brewed coffee for your time!
Another reason why I hope it smells like Starbucks in Heaven :)

Monday, September 21, 2009

Marriable


I just finished reading the book Marriable by Hayley and Michael DiMarco. Alyx gave it to me, and the Omaha hockey trip was the perfect amount of time to finish it.
To quickly sum up why I loved this book, it's because it's not like other books!
I know, I know...every single book will say that they are not like the others. And one must admit, that this is true. Every book is told just a little bit different. But it seems that the message and meaning are always the same. Don't date until you're ready to get married. Follow Christian teaching. Guard you're heart. And while this book says those things too, it does so in a totally different way!
I've read Josh Harris' book I Kissed Dating Goodbye, along with many others. But this one stated the point, and then moved on! (yes Josh Harris...moved on!) It was humorous, and fast paced. I wanted to be reading it!
It stated the 10 most common lies that guys will tell girls. I talked about being friends with the opposite sex, and how only gay people marry their best friend.
There were many parts of the book that I would like to post, but I will stick to one, and you can read the rest (after Kristen, who currently has it).
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Top 10 Rejection Lines Given by Women (and what they actually mean)
10. I think of you as a brother (I don't want to kiss you, ever.)
9. There's a slight difference in our ages (I'm not Mary Kay LeTourneau or Anna Nicole Smith.)
8. I'm not attracted to you in that way (again, I don't want to kiss you, ever.)
7. My life is too complicated right now (Instead of "you complete me," you complicate me.)
6. I've got a boyfriend (And his name is TiVo.)
5. I don't date men where I work (And if you quit, I still work on Earth.)
4. It's not you, it's me (It's me not wanting to date you.)
3. I'm concentrating on my career (Until I find someone that I see a future with.)
2. I'm celibate (How many times do I have to say it? I don't want to kiss you!)
1. Let's be friends (You won't mind when I tell you about all the other guys I meet and have a crush on, will you?)
~~~~~~~~~~~~
Top 10 Rejection Lines Given by Men (and what they actually mean)
10. I think of you as a sister (I'm just not attracted to you.)
9. There's a slight difference in our ages (I'm just not attracted to you.)
8. I'm not attracted to you in that way (Um, what he said.)
7. My life is too complicated right now (I can't keep juggling you and dating my new crush.)
6. I've got a girlfriend (I'm just not attracted to you enough to dump her.)
5. I don't date women where I work (I see a nasty breakup in our future, and I need this job.)
4. It's not you, it's me (It's you.)
3. I'm concentrating on my career (I'm just not attracted to you.)
2. I'm celibate (This is getting redundant...)
1. Let's be friends ( I value you as an important influence in my life and can't imagine navigating my free time without you being a part of it. Did I mention that I'm just not attracted to you?)

When it Rains...

On Saturday night I was talking with my friend Alyx, and we had just about run out of all hope in the opposite sex. We've been reading lots of courtship books together, including Marriable, which I will post next.
So we prayed together, and decided to ask God for a sign. If there were any decent men left, God would send rain.
I greatly admire Alyx because she asks God for signs every day, and never doubts what she's sees. I, on the other hand, am always doubting whatever I ask for: "Is one flower good enough, or was I asking for more?"
About two hours later, Alyx text me and said that if the rain didn't come on Sunday, it would come on Monday. To which I replied: DO YOU WANT MEN TO FAIL???
I mean rain? Come on?
Sunday came and went without a single drop.
Not even a little breeze.
Monday came, with no sign yet.
But at 9:30am, God opened the sky's, and I had the fear of God placed into me!
The puddles were 6 inches deep! By the time I reached my class, my jeans were wet up to my knees!
Some may say that it's just a coincidence. That it had been predicted to rain all week long.
I however, will continue to say "that I CAN reasonably take credit for making it rain!"
(Although Mrs. Bennet from "Pride and Prejudice" cannot...)
Love is a gross exaggeration of the differance between one person and everybody else.
-George Bernard Shaw

Saturday, September 19, 2009

T.A.K.E. Defense!

We traveled to Kansas City today to take a self defense class with some friends. Miss Hannah practiced her moves with me, while the mothers used their hips to fight the enemy off.
We were SO tired from all of this that we just HAD to go to Chick-fil-A ;)
Then we traveled a little further on 435 to the Victorian Trading Company outlet store. We "exceeded our income" by making lots of nice little purchases. Including a pink shirt for me that says "Helpless Romantic".
We also did some graduation and spring formal planning, since these events will be here before you know it!
Over all a great day spent with some great girls!




Thursday, September 17, 2009

Shelly and Lord Byron

N.B. Percy Shelly, his wife Mary Shelly, and Lord Byron often vacationed at a summer house of Lake Geneva in Switzerland. One summer they agreed to each write a ghost stories and see who could come up with the best. Mary Shelly's "Frankenstein" won.

She Walks in Beauty
by Lord Byron

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face;
Where thoughts serenely sweet express
How pure, how dear their dwelling place.

And on that cheek, and o'er that brow,
So soft, so calm, yet eloquent,
The smiles that win, the tints that glow,
But tell of days in goodness spent,
A mind at peace with all below,
A heart whose love is innocent!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Sick...

The bipolar weather finally caught up with me, and I'm now drinking fluids religiously. With the ACT on Saturday and a hockey tournament after that, a speedy recovery is much needed.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Quotes...

A couple of hundred years ago, Benjamin Franklin shared with the world the secret of his success. Never leave that till tomorrow, he said, which you can do today. This is the man who discovered electricity. You think more people would listen to what he had to say. I don't know why we put things off, but if I had to guess, I'd have to say it has a lot to do with fear. Fear of failure, fear of rejection, sometimes the fear is just of making a decision, because what if you're wrong? What if you're making a mistake you can't undo? The early bird catches the worm. A stitch in time saves nine. He who hesitates is lost. We can't pretend we hadn't been told. We've all heard the proverbs, heard the philosophers, heard our grandparents warning us about wasted time, heard the damn poets urging us to seize the day. Still sometimes we have to see for ourselves. We have to make our own mistakes. We have to learn our own lessons. We have to sweep today's possibility under tomorrow's rug until we can't anymore. Until we finally understand for ourselves what Benjamin Franklin really meant. That knowing is better than wondering, that waking is better than sleeping, and even the biggest failure, even the worst, beat the hell out of never trying.


At some point, you have to make a decision. Boundaries don't keep other people out. They fence you in. Life is messy. That's how we're made. So, you can waste your lives drawing lines. Or you can live your life crossing them. But there are some lines... that are way too dangerous to cross.


Denial. It's not just a river in Egypt. It's a freakin' ocean.


Maybe we're not supposed to be happy. Maybe gratitude has nothing to do with joy. Maybe being grateful means recognizing what you have for what it is. Appreciating small victories. Admiring the struggle it takes simply to be human. Maybe we're thankful for the familiar things we know. And maybe we're thankful for the things we'll never know. At the end of the day, the fact that we have the courage to still be standing is reason enough to celebrate.


Communication. It's the first thing we really learn in life. Funny thing is, once we grow up, learn our words and really start talking the harder it becomes to know what to say. Or how to ask for what we really need.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

PureVolume.com

I realized today that I haven't done a very decent job of sharing this wonderful piece of heaven with all my readers. I can now sleep once again with a clear head!
It's this great website where unsigned bands can post their music and people like you and me can download it for free! Yes, for free! So far I've found: VersaEmerge (she sings with A Day to Remember in their song If it means a lot to you), He is We (plays the piano...enough said), Vanilla Sky (did a cover for Umbrella), and NeverShoutNever (oh man he is gorgeous! My favorite is 30 Days). Look these up and let me know if you find anything yourself

SwapTree.com

I signed up for a book swap group today! I had a few books and CD's that I was looking to get rid of anyways, and I always have a book I'm interested in reading. I added 9 things to my list today, and I'm excited to pick out my first book!

New Moon: Meet Jacob

Friday, September 4, 2009

Something Inside



This is such a great song and movie. I can honestly say that I have cried every time I watch it.
Jonathan Rhys-Meyers (guitar) is a great musician and plays a great role in this movie. It's a shame that such a small part of the song is in the movie. One of the reasons I love Yellowcard so much is because they have a voilin player in their band. I know that the times with always change, and that musical styles come and go; but something about classical music will always be with us. It comes back in little bits here and there. Modern musicians take an idea from Chopin or need I say Pachelbel? At any rate, I hope you enjoy this song.

August is Over

I have been waiting a year to post these lyrics on my Facebook status. And finally, on Monday, I did! We the Kings has long been one of my favorite bands. I was listening to them before anyone knew who they were. And now they're on tour in the UK and are very well known.

August is Over
Say a prayer
The summer nights are dead
The fall is coming
We were careless hearts
Who got caught up in this

You were shy
To the night you drove me wild
And you crashed into me
And I won't lie
I wish it lasted a lifetime

Please stay-ay-ay
Won't you stay-ay-ay
Tonight

Breathe in deep
And say goodbye
The saddest song
I'll ever write
For anyone, anytime

Breathe in deep
Before I say
I can feel us slip away
You're almost gone
You're good as gone
August is over

No wait
Cause August had to end
All our bags are packed
Just two broken hearts
That got caught up in this

I deny
That tomorrow you'll be gone
And so far from me
It's something strange
Never love the same way

Please stay-ay-ay
Won't you stay-ay-ay
Tonight

Breathe in deep
And say goodbye
The saddest song
I'll ever write
For anyone, anytime

Breathe in deep
Before I say
I can feel us slip away
You're almost gone
You're good as gone

We can try to drown it out
But it never stops breathing
We can take it all in
But it never slows down
We've come down from that cloud

Well say-ay-ay
What you gotta say-ay-ay
Please say-ay-ay
What you gotta say
Whoa-a-oh-oh
Whoa-a-oh-oh

Breathe in deep
And say goodbye
The saddest song
I'll ever write
For anyone, anytime

Breathe in deep
Before I say
I can feel us slip away
You're almost gone
You're good as gone
August is over
We're not the reason
August is over
Human Life International's Statement on the Passing of Senator Edward Kennedy

We must, as a matter of precept, pray for the salvation of heretical Catholics like Senator Edward Kennedy, but we do not have to praise him let alone extol him with the full honors of a public Catholic funeral and all the adulation that attends such an event. There was very little about Ted Kennedy's life that deserves admiration from a spiritual or moral point of view. He was probably the worst example of a Catholic statesman that one can think of. When all is said and done, he has distorted the concept of what it means to be a Catholic in public life more than anyone else in leadership today.

Obviously we don't know the state of Senator Edward Kennedy's soul upon death. We don't pretend to. We are told by the family that he had the opportunity to confess his sins before a priest, and his priest has said publicly he was "at peace" when he died. For that we are grateful. But it is one thing to confess one's sins and for these matters to be kept, rightfully, private. It is another thing entirely for one who so consistently and publicly advocated for the destruction of unborn human beings to depart the stage without a public repudiation of these views, a public confession, as it were.

It is up to God to judge Senator Kennedy's soul. We, as rational persons, must judge his actions, and his actions were not at all in line with one who values and carefully applies Church teaching on weighty matters. Ted Kennedy's positions on a variety of issues have been a grave scandal for decades, and to honor this "catholic" champion of the culture of death with a Catholic funeral is unjust to those who have actually paid the price of fidelity. We now find out that President Obama will eulogize the Senator at his funeral, an indignity which, following on the heels of the Notre Dame fiasco, leaves faithful Catholics feeling sullied, desecrated and dehumanized by men who seem to look for opportunities to slap the Church in the face and do so with impunity simply because they have positions of power.

It is not enough for Kennedy to have been a "great guy behind the scenes" as we have seen him referred to even by his political opponents. It is also not praiseworthy to put a Catholic rhetorical veneer on his leftist politics that did nothing to advance true justice as the Church sees it or to advance the peace of Christ in this world. Every indication of Senator Kennedy's career, every public appearance, every sound bite showed an acerbic, divisive and partisan political hack for whom party politics were much more infallible than Church doctrines. Whatever one's political affiliation, if one is only "Catholic" to the extent that his faith rhymes with his party line, then his Catholicism is a fraud.

As the Scriptures remind us, there is a time for everything under the sun. This, now, is the time for honesty about our Faith and about those who are called to express it in the public forum. If we do not remind ourselves of the necessity of public confession for public sins such as Senator Kennedy was guilty of, then we are negligent in our embrace of the Faith and we are part of the problem. As Pope Benedict has reminded us recently, charity without truth can easily become mere sentimentality, and we must not fall into that error. A Catholic show of charity for the family must not eclipse the truth that is required of all with eyes to see and ears to hear.

Senator Kennedy needs to be sent to the afterlife with a private, family-only funeral and the prayers of the Church for the salvation of his immortal soul. He will not be missed by the unborn who he betrayed time and time again, nor by the rest of us who are laboring to undo the scandalous example of Catholicism that he gave to three generations of Americans.

Sincerely,


Rev. Thomas J. Euteneuer,
President, Human Life International

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

When I consider how my light is spent by John Milton

When I consider how my light is spent
Ere half my days in this dark world and wide,
And that one talent which is death to hide
Lodg'd with me useless, though my soul more bent
To serve therewith my Maker, and present
My true account, lest he returning chide,
"Doth God exact day-labour, light denied?"
I fondly ask. But Patience, to prevent
That murmur, soon replies: "God doth not need
Either man's work or his own gifts: who best
Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state
Is kingly; thousands at his bidding speed
And post o'er land and ocean without rest:
They also serve who only stand and wait."

For English this year we have to read two or three poems each week. So far I've read this one by Milton, 'Shall I compare thee to a summer's Day' by Shakespeare, 'Kubla Khan' by Samual Taylor Coleridge and 'The Raven' by Edgar Allan Poe. The last, if you haven't previously read, is very much worth your time. It has by far been my favorite so far, but was a tad bit too long to post here.

Quote...

Love is a gross exaggeration of the difference between one person and everybody else. ~George Bernard Shaw

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Brandi Carlile

























The new Brandi Carlile CD comes out on September 1st!
As some of you know she sings my favorite song 'The Story', so I am very excited about this!
p.s. It's not what's happening in 5 days, but nice try ;)

5 Days!

Now that you all know that something is happening in 5 days, you will just have to wait and wonder what it is! Ha!
Okay...I'll post a clue each day.
Wednesday's clue: Warped Tour 2008
If you guess, then you know me very well! Best of luck!

Changes and Adaptions

I wanted to post something on the one week mark of my return, but as fate would have it, it was not possible. I was quickly rushed back into American culture by babysitting the boys for a few days while mom and dad went to Napa Valley. Between the 4 hockey tryouts for the twins, and Reid's 3 soccer games, I am becoming an expert "soccer mom".
I honestly have no idea what I would have done without Alyx. She was definitely sent from God to help me through everything! She rode with me to Kansas City and helped with directions (in a horrible part of town might I add. It was only through God's grace that we actually made it out of there alive!), she's talked me through my "anti-American culture" phase (which might happen again), she's prayed for me, and been a constant support. I know she has many things to deal with in her own life, and I am astounded by all her energy.
In case you're wondering, Reid's team did get first place in their tournament, and Ben and David did make the team. Further proof of my non-failure, although at times I did wonder.
Miss April was also a wonder. The chicken was amazing, even though you wouldn't let me give it to the boys. And the day the boys went skating was perfect timing!
I did chose the title for this post to be 'changes and adaptions' for a reason, and I suppose I should talk about some of them.
I am now enrolled at Missouri Western for French 101. I have my student ID and parking pass, and so far I haven't failed. I must confess that when Monday morning rolled around I was feeling quite nervous! None of you know, but when the nerves hit, I always have to pee. A confession which I'm sure my mother would not approve of me posting over the world-wide web, but nevertheless, there it is. We had dentist appointments that morning, and since mom and dad had been gone all week I still hadn't purchased my books. On a side note, the tags on my car expired while I was out of the country. A matter which has been very trying on all concerned. That being said, dad had to give me a ride to class. I made him help me buy my books and help me find the building; I even kissed him on the cheek when he dropped me at the door!
I've been to two French classes, and so far I can count to 30 and say a few things (Domitille better be impressed!). Sharon, a home school grad., is also in the class. We've sat by each other both classes, and practice a little together. I had piano lessons today which is always a joy. I cannot express how much I dearly missed them while I was gone! I started a new Mozart song, and Margie has already given me a book and painting that go with them.
I think this is all the exciting or not so exciting news I have for now. Hope everyone is having a wonderful week :)

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Hear My Report

**Pictures of Paris:
**Stories of my Summer Exchange**
You are invited to come and hear about my trip for France
on Sunday evening, August 23
starting at 7:00 pm
in the Community Room at the Pony Express Museum
914 Penn Street (9th and Mitchell Ave.)
French cookies and refreshments will be served
Questions: call my cell phone at 816-244-5023

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Tomorrow I start my long voyage home. Domitille's family is taking their summer trip to Greece, so I've been staying with Claire's family since Saturday. Her mother is such a wonderful cook, and I've really enjoyed my stay here. Tomorrow we take the train into Paris and will stay over night at her brother's house. Then on Thursday, our flight leaves around noon-and I'll be back home that night. Today, they took me to the grocery store, and I was able to purchase some French things to bring back with me. Let's just hope I don't eat it all before we leave in the morning. French snack food is heaven sent!

In my first week here, I finished reading all five books that I brought with me on the trip, so I had my mom mail some more. It ended up working out perfectly because in the week it took the books to come I was able to overcome my American way of not being able to do nothing. Europeans are masters at this, just doing nothing. I can't really say it's being lazy, it's just doing nothing. It was so hard for me to be able to do this. The second week I was so desperate that I started making journal entries on my computer. That day I wrote sixteen thousand words, and it only got worse from there. It would be a lie to say that I'm as good as the French at doing nothing, but I am getting better.

Being on this trip also gave me a chance to learn to live on my own before college, which has really been a blessing. Although France was once a very Catholic country, things have drastically changed. I brought my mass book, but to my disappointment nothing has been in Latin.
Before I left I could already feel the pressure of college searches. We've been visiting all the schools on my list, and I knew that early admission paperwork starts at the end of August. At this point I'm not really sure where God wants me to be, or what He wants me doing, but this trip has greatly increased my trust in Him.

I am so thankful for my parents. They are both such wonderful people, and are always there for me. I receive about 5 to 10 texts a day from my mother--telling me everything she would if I was sitting in the passenger seat of the van. They never failed to make me smile.

I had the great pleasure of being told by my father that my room was being turned into an ice rink the first week I was gone, thankfully it was only used for intense games of knee hockey (which on second though may be just as bad...).

Reid has missed me very much. He sends me little messages on Facebook, but since it usually takes him until Wednesday trips to Kansas City to start talking to me, he's really ready for me to be home after 5 weeks away.

The twins had a little bit of growing up to do--the first two weeks of my trip they were the only kids at home. My Mom wrote me saying she was dying for us to come back because without Reid and I there, the twins just didn't know what to do with themselves.

So many of my friends have been really great during this month. Becca never fails to make me laugh, Kristen keeps me informed on the latest music trends, and Alyx is always there when I'm ready to cry. I'm told that distance makes the heart grow fonder, but truthfully I'm dying to see them again.

I had a wonderful last night with Domitille. We stayed up late watching "Pride and Prejudice" on my computer, and laughed a lot. We both have little patience, and since my computer was running low on battery, we watched the movie for 10 minutes, then charged the dead computer for 10 minutes. It took us 4 hours to watch the movie, but I wouldn't have it any other way. I told myself I wouldn't cry when she left, and it's true that when they backed out of the driveway I didn't shed a single tear. But as soon as I was alone in my room, all the emotions started to flood in. In the past two weeks I really became part of their family. I was no longer a guest at their house, but someone they loved. It was my home, and I will miss them all so very much.
We've already started to plan something for next year. Maybe I will take Reid there, or maybe her and I will travel to Italy. Paris is said to be the city of love, but Domitille swears that it has nothing on Italy.
Please continue to pray as I start my travels tomorrow.
I love you all,
Megan

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Lourdes

Yesterday Domi's family took me to Lourdes, which was wonderful. It was very hot and there were hundreds of people there, but I found the experience very holy.
Last night we had dinner on the beach and did more swimming in the ocean.
Sunday is our last day here and then I travel to stay with Claires family. I will then fly back with her on Thursday!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Visiting the Shrine at Lourdes

Today, we went to Lourdes --very early! It is 2-hour's drive away, and the whole family went. We visited all three churches and the grotto, despite the crowds and the heat. The grounds are the size of Worlds of Fun! I prayed for everyone, bought holy water bottles, and spent my last Euro...

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Notes to Friends

Everything is going great in France, I'm even picking up some of the language! I can order coffee, which you know is very important, but not bread. Something about my broken tongue won't let me say it the right way. Domi's seven-year-old cousin is staying with us this week, so we have been working together on our language skills (yes, my brain is at the same level as a seven year old). She taught me "la plage," and I taught her "the beach."

The beach is wonderful here, and so is the food. The first week was hard, and I would have literally killed for something fried. But I made it through and am now enjoying it very much. I have also discovered that I have an addiction to caramel nut ice cream bars, and I am in no hurry to get over it. We better have these things back home. We have ice cream all the time. After lunch, in the afternoon, and after dinner. For serious. Thank you to all the people who have been texting me, you are amazing!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Hello all!
I'm sorry if you are checking this and not seeing anything new. I've had a hard time finding internet, and really don't have much time today. Domitille and I finally found an internet cafe and will hopefully be coming here many more times. Everything is great here. The weather is very hot in the south of France, and we are getting very tan. We spent one weekend in Poland for a wedding (think "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" and you're not too far off) and on Sunday we went to Spain. Thank you all for all the prayers and support. Love you all!
~Megan

Monday, July 27, 2009

Seaside Down Time

My mom calls it a "French Riviera" tan -- I'm darker on the front side because I sit in a lounge chair reading all afternoon without turning over. We spend afternoons on the deck by the pool. In the evening, we always go to the beach. It is about a 5 minute walk from their house.

There is no Internet service at this house, but I can receive text messages from my family and friends (hint-hint).

Monday, July 20, 2009

Polish Wedding in Krakow

It reminds me of "Big, Fat, Greek Wedding"... it kept going on and on.
walking around Krakow with Domi and Remi

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Quotes on meditation (from Eat, Pray, Love)

If you sit down with the pure intention to meditate, whatever happens next is none of your business.

Instead of trying to forceful take thoughts out of your mind, give your mind something better to play with. Something healthier.
Like what?
Like love. Like pure divine love.

When I ask my mind to rest into stillness, it is astonishing how quickly it will turn (1) bored, (2) angry, (2) depressed, (4) anxious or (5) all of the above.

Like most humanoids, I am burdened with what the Buddhists call the "monkey mind" - the thoughts that swing from limb to limb, stopping only to scratch themselves, spit and howl. From the distant past to the unknowable future, my mind swings wildly through time, touching on dozens of ideas a minute, unharnessed and undisciplined. This in itself is not necessarily a problem; the problem is the emotional attachment that goes along with the thinking. Happy thoughts make me happy, but - whoop! - how quickly I swing again into obsessive worry, blowing the mood; and then it's the remembrance of an angry moment and I start to get hot and pissed off all over again; and then my mind decides it might be a good time to start feeling sorry for itself, and loneliness follows promptly. You are, after all, what you think. Your emotions are the slaves to your thoughts, and you are the slave to your emotions.

Along the Seine River


Notre Dame Cathedral







Friday, July 10, 2009

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Anne Wortham

"Fellow Americans,
"Please know: I am black; I grew up in the segregated South. I did not vote for Barack Obama; I wrote in Ron Paul’s name as my choice for president. Most importantly, I am not race conscious. I do not require a black president to know that I am a person of worth, and that life is worth living. I do not require a black president to love the ideal of America.
"I cannot join you in your celebration. I feel no elation. There is no smile on my face. I am not jumping with joy. There are no tears of triumph in my eyes. For such emotions and behavior to come from me, I would have to deny all that I know about the requirements of human flourishing and survival – all that I know about the history of the United States of America, all that I know about American race relations, and all that I know about Barack Obama as a politician. I would have to deny the nature of the "change" that Obama asserts has come to America. Most importantly, I would have to abnegate my certain understanding that you have chosen to sprint down the road to serfdom that we have been on for over a century. I would have to pretend that individual liberty has no value for the success of a human life. I would have to evade your rejection of the slender reed of capitalism on which your success and mine depend. I would have to think it somehow rational that 94 percent of the 12 million blacks in this country voted for a man because he looks like them (that blacks are permitted to play the race card), and that they were joined by self-declared "progressive" whites who voted for him because he doesn’t look like them. I would have to be wipe my mind clean of all that I know about the kind of people who have advised and taught Barack Obama and will fill posts in his administration – political intellectuals like my former colleagues at the Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.
"I would have to believe that "fairness" is equivalent of justice. I would have to believe that man who asks me to "go forward in a new spirit of service, in a new service of sacrifice" is speaking in my interest. I would have to accept the premise of a man that economic prosperity comes from the "bottom up," and who arrogantly believes that he can will it into existence by the use of government force. I would have to admire a man who thinks the standard of living of the masses can be improved by destroying the most productive and the generators of wealth.
Finally, Americans, I would have to erase from my consciousness the scene of 125,000 screaming, crying, cheering people in Grant Park, Chicago irrationally chanting "Yes We Can!" Finally, I would have to wipe all memory of all the times I have heard politicians, pundits, journalists, editorialists, bloggers and intellectuals declare that capitalism is dead – and no one, including especially Alan Greenspan, objected to their assumption that the particular version of the anti-capitalistic mentality that they want to replace with their own version of anti-capitalism is anything remotely equivalent to capitalism.
"So you have made history, Americans. You and your children have elected a black man to the office of the president of the United States, the wounded giant of the world. The battle between John Wayne and Jane Fonda is over – and that Fonda won. Eugene McCarthy and George McGovern must be very happy men. Jimmie Carter, too. And the Kennedys have at last gotten their Kennedy look-a-like. The self-righteous welfare statistics in the suburbs can feel warm moments of satisfaction for having elected a black person. So, toast yourselves: 60s counter-cultural radicals, 80s yuppies and 90s bourgeois bohemians. Toast yourselves, Black America. Shout your glee Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Duke, Stanford, and Berkeley. You have elected not an individual who is qualified to be president, but a black man who, like the pragmatist Franklin Roosevelt, promises to – Do Something! You now have someone who has picked up the baton of Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society. But you have also foolishly traded your freedom and mine – what little there is left – for the chance to feel good. There is nothing in me that can share your happy obliviousness.
-Anne Wortham, November 6, 2008

Monday, July 6, 2009

Another quote...

From "Eat, Pray, Love" by Elizabeth Gilbert:
"Moreover, I have boundary issues with men. Or maybe that's not fair to say. To have issues with boundaries, one must have boundaries in the first place, right? But I disappear into the person I love. I am the permeable membrane. If I love you, you can have everything. You can have my time, my devotion, my a**, my money, my family, my dog, my dog's money, my dog's time-everything. If I love you, I will carry for you all your pain, I will assume for you all your debts (in every definition of the word), I will protect you from your own insecurity, I will project upon you all sorts of good qualities that you have never actually cultivated in yourself and I will buy Christmas presents for your entire family. I will give you the sun and the rain, and if they are not available, I will give you a sun check and a rain check. I will give you all this and more, until I get so exhausted and depleted that the only way I can recover my energy is by becoming infatuated with someone else.
"I do not relay these facts about myself with pride, but this is how it's always been."

Eat Pray Love...

From Elizabeth Gilbert's book:
"Please go to this pizzeria. Order the margherita pizza with double mozzarella. If you do not eat this pizza when you are in Naples, please lie to me later and tell me that you did."
So Sofie and I have come to Pisseria da Michele, and these pies we have just ordered-one for each of us-are making us lose our minds. I love my pizza so much, in face, that I have come to believe in my delirium that my pizza might actually love me, in return. I am having a relationship with this pizza, almost an affair. Meanwhile, Sofie is practically in tears over hers, she's having a metaphysical crisis about it, she's begging me, "Why do they even bother trying to make pizza in Stockholm? Why do we even bother eating food at all in Stockholm?"
Pizzeria da Michele is a small place with only two rooms and one nonstop oven. It's about a fifteen-minute walk from the train station in the rain, don't even worry about it, just go. You need to get there fairly early in the day because sometimes they run out of dough, which will break your heart. By 1:00pm, the streets outside the pizzeria have become jammed with Neapolitans trying to get into the place, shoving for access like they're trying to get space on a lifeboat. There's not a menu. They have only two varieties of pizza here-regular and extra cheese. None of this new age southern California olives-and-sum-dried-tomato wannabe pizza twaddle. The dough , it takes me half my meal to figure out, tastes more like Indian nan than like any pizza crust-thin and crispy, or thick and doughy. How was I to have known there could be a crust in this world that was thin and dough? Holy of holies! Thin, dough, strong, gummy, yummy, chewy, salty pizza paradise. On top, there is a sweet tomato sauce that foams up all bubbly and creamy when it melts the fresh buffalo mozzarella, and the one sprig of basil in the middle of the whole deal somehow infuses the entire pizza with herbal radiance, much the same way one shimmering movie star in the middle of a party brings a contract high of clamour to everyone around her. It's technically impossible to eat this thing, of course. You try to take a bite off your slice and the gummy crust folds, and the hot cheese runs away like topsoil in a landslide, makes a mess of you and your surroundings, but just deal with it!"

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Articles on Idolatry

Just some things from Bible Study that I thought would be nice to share. Not a lot of thoughts about them, but please leave your comments and I will pass them on :)

http://www.4shared.com/file/113918165/c6f5c7f9/Idolatry-Going.html

http://ow.ly/eFJG

The secret life that will never know...

So, when I was putting my summer list together I thought it would be good to read "The Secret Life of Bees" by Sue Monk Kidd. The books I read depend on the mood I'm in, so I usually have three or four going at once, so I can have a choice. Today was the third time I have tried reading it with no luck at all! Someone tell me it gets better after chapter 5??!!

Reading List for the Summer

Before we begin, let me state, for the record, that this list is in no way binding in any way shape or form. I reserve the right to change it at any time, and to not finish it if so desired!

The Wednesday Letters
My Sisters Keeper
The Four Loves
Surprised by Joy
Eat, Pray, Love
Father of the Bride
The Secret Life of Bee's
The Man Who Was Thursday
The Scarlet Letter
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
The God Delusion
Joan of Arc
The Virginian
Sinners in the Hands of an Argry God
The Celestial Railway
The Turn of the Screw
Ben Franklin's autobiography
The Five People You Meet in Heaven

Books, oh so many books...

I know I haven't written much lately, but I've been reading quite a bit! I have found that the books I am supposed to be reading, seem less and less appealing. I have however picked up several books over the last few weeks and enjoyed them very much.
Last week I spent three wonderful days at the lake soaking up the sun and reading 'My Sisters Keeper'. I was thrilled with how well written the book was! I found myself laughing and crying much more than I expected. While in the midst of a hockey game, I was nearing the end of the book much sooner than I realized. If you know anything about hockey the periods are 17 minutes long. I missed the entire 2 period because I found myself sitting in the woman's restroom with many used tissues! Now, I will confess that the purpose of reading this book was to go see the movie. Let it be stated now that you should read the movie first! It has always been a rule of my mothers, and I am adapting it to my own life. I won't go in to great detail about the movie, because that is the whole purpose of seeing it for yourself (although I will recommend taking plenty of tissues!). It was well acted, and they did stay pretty close to the original story line. I took the advice of a friend and didn't have any expectations going in to the theater, which did help immensely.
Quotes from the book:
"Maybe who we are isn't so much about what we do, but rather what we're capable of when we least expect it."
"When you love someone you let them take care of you."
"A real friend isn't capable of feeling sorry for you."
"You don't love someone because they're perfect," she says. "You love them in spite of the fact they're not."
"Doubt thou that the stars are fire;
Doubt thou that the sun doth move;
Doubt truth to be a liar;
But never doubt that I love. -William Shakespeare, Hamlet

Thursday, July 2, 2009

BBC Reading List

Apparently the BBC believes most people will have only read 6 of the 100 books on the BBC big read top 100 book list. It is on my Bucket List to read all of these books, but after Becca's review of Bleak House, I might not be able to :)

1 Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
2 The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
3 Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
4 Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
5 To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee
6 The Bible
7 Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte
8 Nineteen Eighty Four – George Orwell
9 His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
10 Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
11 Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
12 Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
13 Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
14 Complete Works of Shakespeare
15 Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
16 The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
17 Birdsong – Sebastian Faulk
18 Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
19 The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
20 Middlemarch – George Eliot
21 Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
22 The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
23 Bleak House – Charles Dickens
24 War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
25 The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
26 Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
27 Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28 Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
29 Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
30 The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
31 Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
32 David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
33 Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
34 Emma – Jane Austen
35 Persuasion – Jane Austen
36 The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
37 The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
38 Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
39 Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
40 Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
41 Animal Farm – George Orwell
42 The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
43 One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44 A Prayer for Owen Meany – John Irving
45 The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
46 Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
47 Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
48 The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
49 Lord of the Flies – William Golding
50 Atonement – Ian McEwan
51 Life of Pi – Yann Martel
52 Dune – Frank Herbert
53 Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
54 Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
55 A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
56 The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zifon
57 A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
58 Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
59 The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
60 Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61 Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
62 Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
63 The Secret History – Donna Tartt
64 The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
65 Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
66 On The Road – Jack Kerouac
67 Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
68 Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
69 Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
70 Moby Dick – Herman Melville
71 Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
72 Dracula – Bram Stoker
73 The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
74 Notes From A Small Island – Bill Bryson
75 Ulysses – James Joyce
76 The Inferno – Dante
77 Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
78 Germinal – Emile Zola
79 Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
80 Possession – AS Byatt
81 A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
82 Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
83 The Color Purple – Alice Walker
84 The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
85 Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
86 A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
87 Charlotte’s Web – EB White
88 The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
89 Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90 The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
91 Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
92 The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93 The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
94 Watership Down – Richard Adams
95 A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
96 A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
97 The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
98 Hamlet – William Shakespeare
99 Charlie and the Chocolate FactoyRoald Dahl
100 Les Miserables – Victor Hugo