Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Making Hay While the Snow Falls

Clay and I were pretty much trapped indoors for 6 days straight due to the endless onslaught of snow. (2 feet over the past week.) Today is our first day of freedom, and I'm relishing every minute of it: driving 70mph on the interstate, stopping at Starbucks, and loving my desk at work.

Yesterday was the real low point. We were putting chains on my car to drive to the Post Office, and I was frustrated beyond belief. For no apparent reason. And--I didn't want to do anything. Lethargy is apparently lethal!

Mostly I spent a lot of time knitting while Clay spent a lot of time reorganizing his "collectible card games." We also watched The Bourne Supremacy, The Bourne Ultimatum, Escape From New York, Under the Tuscan Sun, Minority Report and many episodes of Friends.

Here are some bi-products of my hundreds of hours indoors...some newly knitted armwarmers (out of a fine alpaca yarn, the purchase of which supported rural women in Uraguay) and an army of angsty gingerbread men! Praise the Lord that the roads are finally clear!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Snowed in...

For the 3rd day in a row, we've pretty much been snowed in at home. On Wednesday, I attempted to brave my 30 mile drive to work, with no success. I slid through an intersection near our apt, drove 20 mph on 50 mph State Highways, and arrived to the slow-movin I-5 only to begin fishtailing immediately. So I turned around and came back home to enjoy a day of warm soup and board games with Clay and Mom and Dad (who arrived just in time for snowstorm 2008).

I didn't even try to drive to work again yesterday.
And then today, I made another attempt, only to find the highway still snow-covered. No good!

The problem isn't necessarily the snow...it's that in Western Washington, there aren't enough snow plows to keep up with all the snow, and people are really uncomfortable driving in it, so they either drive reeeeally slow or get into lots of accidents.

Regardless, Clay continues to look around it all going, "This is CRAzy," while I am thinking back to J-Term at Taylor University so thankful that I don't have to trudge to Calculus class through 2 feet of snow drifts.

It's a snowy December in Western Washington with a most-probable White Christmas. I do not miss our usual grey/cold/rainy/dark December days...and thankfully, since Blockbuster and Safeway are a 10-minute walk from our house, we're likely to survive the storm.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

OTR Live at Triple Door

I enjoy seeing Over the Rhine live in concert more than I enjoy most things in life. It's the little things really... melodic piano solos, an upright bass, and Karin's new outfit.

Over Thanksgiving weekend, we enjoyed an evening of Over the Rhine at the swanky Seattle venue, The Triple Door, which is part speakeasy, part dinner theater, and a little bit Disney World. It's fancy. A fall trek to Over the Rhine has become a bit of a thing...last September we took in two shows at Triple Door, and in November 2006, I managed to catch them at the Canal Street Tavern in Dayton, Ohio.

Every time I see Over the Rhine live, I end up connecting with a song I've heard a million times by hearing it in an entirely new way. This time, it was "Poughkeepsie," which touches me in a deep place every time I hear it...and "New Redemption Song" from Snow Angels...As I was sitting there, gently rocking back and forth and humming along to New Redemption Song, I knew it was my song for 2008...the one that will quantify what this year has meant to me. The lyrics are simple...but the music communicated so much power. I'm thankful for music, thankful that Karin and Linford continue making music after 20 years together, and thankful for the power of redemption...

New Redemption Song
(Words and Music: Detweiler)

Lord we need a new redemption song
Lord we’ve tried
It just seems to come out wrong
Won’t you help us please
Help us just to sing along
A new redemption song

Lord we need
A new redemption day
All our worries
Keep getting in the way

Won’t you help us please
Help us find the words to pray
To bring redemption day

Monday, December 08, 2008

A Trip to Visit the Sun

Clay and I joked about bringing all of our friends a souvenir back from Tucson--a picture of the sun. We never quite got around to it during our 3-day whirlwind to the sunny desert, where it's 75 degrees in the winter. But we did enjoy the sun and a lot of other great things.

Here are our top 5 take-aways of a memorable visit:

  1. Friends. We spent time with the Kings, the Cummings, the Reminders, Tom and Vonnie, the PV Church of Christ youth group, Kendra, Amanda, Heather and Ben...not to mention a stop on the way back to the Phoenix airport to have lunch with Drew, Lisa and baby Micah. In all of this, I'm so thankful that through Christ we can have so many brothers and sisters in a place far away. We were filled with so much love and appreciation for these people, and I was thankful to have so many great conversations with the people that shaped Clay during his three years of ministry there. It's like I gained more understanding into who Clay has become by getting to know the people that have shaped him. Pretty cool.

  2. Babies. During our trip, there were babies and toddlers everywhere. Clay spent a good hour playing ball with a 5-year-old and 2-year-old. He spent another good hour jumping on the trampoline with a 7-year-old and a 6-year-old. I spent time crawling around the floor with an 8-month-old and bouncing a 4-month-old on my knee. We realized we enjoy hanging out with kids, but they're messy and a lot of work, and we are not ready for them yet.

  3. Cold Drinks. I feel that living in the Northwest gives you a greater sense of appreciation for the joys that coffee can bring to your life. In the same way, visiting the desert gives you a greater appreciation for cold drinks. Whether it's a slushee from Eegee's, some gelato, an iced tea, or a frappuccino, cold drinks don't taste any better than they do in Tucson.

  4. Grass. You really start to miss grass when you don't see it. Everything in Tucson fades to this light browny-pink color, and there aren't any really rich colors around, especially green. Everyone's front yards are filled with nicely arranged tiny pink rocks. While in Tucson this go-around, we were both appreciative of how our quality-of-life is improved by something as simple as grass.

  5. Closure. Clay has missed Tucson pretty much since he said goodbye in August 2007. He misses the sun, he misses the concerts, he misses Eegees, he misses his friends. In this visit, we were able to see that our Tucson friends are still very much our friends, and that he has made a big impact in the lives of the teens he worked with. In a way, it was like we finally received closure from Clay's departure in August 2007 while saying hello to the realization that these people are still connected to us in the present.