Monday, November 30, 2009

The thing about going on trips is, somehow we always come home to a house with no clean clothes and all the groceries are gone. It's not like anyone is eating the food or wearing the clothes. I mean, Liz comes over here, but all she eats is oatmeal and ginger beer, and she has her own clothes. So, it's a puzzlement.

Anyways, typically the first day back in KC I go to Walmart, that Imperialist paradise. I have to work it a little, to try to shop with a minimum of childrens. The amount of time and effort involved in shopping is directly proportional to the amount of people riding on and around my basket. Anyways, I got to go solo yesterday during naptime, and I went down basically every aisle, because I could and there was no little genius type crossing items off my list and griping about me going off-list and no little other person exclaiming about see THE BALLOON MOM SEE THE BALLOON I NEED THAT BALLOON IS THAT A BIRD MOM I WANN GED OUT MOM I NEED HODE THE CORN MOM.

I got lots of what we need, primarily frozen pizza, peanut butter and bread. And bread, and bread and bread. After a leisurely hour.5, I arrived at the register, loaded the conveyor belt, attempted to engage the surly cashier, and after another YEAR of waiting, I reach for the trusty wallet. Oh, right. The wallet that's at my house. FAIL FAIL FAIL.

Fail fail fail. Even now, it frustrates me. I had to drive back to my house and do some serious convincing to get the MOG and the wee ones in the van for a 2 part errand which involved a)paying for my melted groceries and b)procuring a Christmas tree. More about that "later".

So, then we get back to Walmart and I realize I have forgotten my wallet, again. For which I am mocked unmercifully by the SAME person who stored my wallet in a random backpack while "cleaning". That same person forgets their wallet MOST days, but had luckily for us, remembered it and went in, with no small fuss, and paid for the groceries. Sheesh.

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Story archives here. You have to scroll down to the bottom for the beginning if you want to read in order.

Now, if you think about it, me and Jimmy was doomed from the start. Grandma woulda said somethin about water seekin it’s own level or some such, and what she woulda meant by that is that my mama and my daddy were two of the most rotten sorry excuses for human beings ever to walk the earth. At least, that’s what me and Jimmy come up with.

Grandma had a lot of sayings, about apples and trees and chickens roosting and bad seeds and such. Eventually, I guess Mama decided she was nuts and had her put up in the Happy Valley Retirement Home for the Aged. She died real quick, and then Mama stepped out for her Coke. It’s been years now. Still can’t work up a taste for Coke.

Anyways, Jimmy has had his share of troubles. He runs into the law every couple weeks, usually about fightin, or drinkin, or drivin without a license, or driving without inspection or registration or insurance and a busted taillight, drunk. One time he got arrested for havin coffee with a woman, although I don’t think I ever got the whole story on that one.

So, all that to say that I wasn’t too surprised when the yard filled up with police cars and Jimmy come runnin in like a greased pig. I was a little startled, since I had been in deep thought about my no-good daddy dyin and what am I supposed to do about it, but not particularly surprised. I stepped out onto the porch with my hands lifted up just a little, not so much like I’m guilty but more along the lines of I ain’t got my gun.

“We don’t wanna talk to you, Jenny. Get your brother out here.”

“Now, Deputy White, what’s this about? Y’all gonna scare my baby with all them sirens. ”

Deputy White turned around and told the boys to shut off their sirens. They all looked pretty disappointed, but they done it.

“And y’all put them guns away. I got a LITTLE baby in this house. Oughta be ashamed.”

Deputy White looked a little bit sick, but he nodded back at the boys to put down their guns. The boys carried on a little, and that weasely little James Lee Cole waved his at me a little before he put it back, but they all put them away.

“Now, Officer. What’s Jimmy done?” I asked, real sweet-like. Way I figured it, Jimmy should be fallin out the upstairs bedroom window right about now. Sure enough, that weaselly little James Lee Cole heard the crash and took off runnin.

I didn’t bother telling him, but he didn’t need to run. Every time Jimmy falls out that window he just lays there moaning till somebody carries him off. Not worth the bullet…

Monday, November 23, 2009

I am safely nestled in the womb of the second largest state in the Union. Actually, let's face it. Nobody counts Alaska. I mean, it's a state, and Sarah Palin is great, but you can't really count a state that's all like frozen and mooses and stuff. Texas is full of people and therefore, bigger. I digress. Anyway, the point is, I am home in Texas for Thanksgiving, and determining which taco joint I will hit like Ike first.

On Friday, I had two teeth yanked violently out of my head for $250. That is a racket if I ever saw one. I took the laughing gas, and composed blogs in my head while he shot me up with Novocaine not one but FOUR times before I stopped feeling. My eye socket was numb till bedtime. Getting high is no good, by the way. I do NOT recommend it. Although, if a guy is going to be digging around in your mouth with pliers while talking about Tears for Fears, it's probably a good idea. It was rough. I want to forget.

Saturday we did a mondo Thanksgiving feast and you might be disappointed to learn that I totally bailed on the turkey but our friend Andrew saved the day and the bird and ROCKED it. All of the food was awesome, all of the people were awesome, and then fire and marshmallows and awesome and I am done here, done. Because it's TACO TIME!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

I have to cook a turkey. Not right now. Well, basically right now but I'll get to that. The deal is, we are having a Thanksgiving party/lunch here on Saturday afternoon, for various peoples and friends and such. So I, being the hostess, am all like, "Hey! No problem! I'll cook a turkey!"

I was thinking I would buy a turkey, and then I would open the oven and put it in and let it cook for hours and hours, and then it would be done and I would be Martha Stewart.

Then, I went onto the Google and found out there is stuff inside the turkey. Guts, y'all. and a NECK. Inside the turkey. And GUTS. Shooooot. So I was all like, ewwww.. and then I started reading about how you have to have a special refrigerated wing of your house with a temperature technician in a hazmat suit and if you get off by a degree or two, you could wipe out an entire internship at IHOP and possibly face prison time.

THEN, a "friend" posts a video for me to watch about the best way to cook the turkey, and it's all like, thaw it like this for DAYS but between these temps and then soak it in a bucket of brine for 6 to 8 hours and everyone who doesn't do this, their turkeys suck. They are dry and overcooked and they suck. And deep down inside, I know that that is true. Turkey sucks. I've talked about it for years. Maybe that's why. Maybe no one soaks it for a day in salt water.

After that soaking, then you rinse it and pat it dry. I don't even TOUCH raw meat, and here I am giving this one a baby bath. Then you put some stuff inside, like sprigs of rosemary. Sprigs of rosemary. I like to eat CORN DOGS.

So after you put some random twigs and such inside the bird, you make a little foil helmet for the white meat, and then you cook it for a while, and then you put the helmet on it and then cook it some more, and temperature is the key. How do you think our wealthy white forefathers killed off the Native Americans? Undercooked turkey, that's how.

I'll let you know how it goes. Or, you might hear about it on the news.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Some months ago, I went to the free dental clinic. You might remember the story. Actually, I went twice, but I don't think I blogged about the second time. Anyways, at the first visit they told me I probably needed a root canal but Obama only wants to fix one thing at a time so I would have to come back for that. They scheduled me for March something or other and then I was on tour so I asked for a reschedule and they said I would go on a "waiting list". Envision a skeleton sitting by the phone. A skeleton with no teeth. Something like that was the plan.

I went to plan B: ignore the cavity. It's a brilliant strategy, but it only works for so long. So then the tooth, she breaks. There's no pain, necessarily, just a sharp edge and then my tooth guts up there in my gums. So for months now I have been scheming how to get this taken care of and then today I just was done. I woke up and called a dentist. A regular, non-free, non-welfare dentist. And I went in the SAME day and had a very very quick x-ray. I put it on my "Faith Card" aka Visa...

Sure enough though, the tooth is infected. No wonder I've been having all manner of sinus pain and headaches and such. Sheesh. So I have to take an antibiotic for a couple of days and then get it pulled Friday.

"You don't look nervous, " he says. "You don't look like a nervous patient."
"The only thing that makes me nervous is pain." I told him. He promised to thoroughly numb me, although he said with the tooth being so close to my ears I am going to hear a lot of crackling and popping when he extracts it. "I'll bring my earbuds!" I say, a little nervously.
"You're still gonna hear it" says Dr. Doom.

Nuts. Still, my strategy is to get this thing out ASAP so I can focus on EATING next week.

Sigh. Sigh, sigh sigh.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Over the last week or several days, we have been experiencing a real move of God here at IHOP. I won't try to define it, because I wouldn't do a very good job. You should just go over to the website and watch some archives and testimonies or to Randy Bohlender's blog and read this. To put it simply, we are being greatly refreshed and healed.

In other news, Brynn has established her position as Boss of the House in the last 2 weeks. She was bossy before, but now she reigns. "You don't DO that, Mom," she tells me sternly. "You don't say no to me." and so on. It would be far easier to set her straight if she was not cute.

But she is cute. SO cute. She is tiny, the size of an 18 monther, and she has a tiny little voice and tiny little fingernails pointing at you as she demands that you give her an apple, or put her beanie baby inside her purse, or whatever. And all of the sudden you realize that you are giving her the purple bowl because she demanded it and it's too late because you are sucked into a pit of adorableness and you have no choice.

Very, very soon here, I will reestablish my authority around here. I will look down on her upturned face with her rosebud lips pouting and her beautiful blue eyes filled with tears and I will say, sternly, "Okay. But this is the LAST time."

Friday, November 13, 2009

We led worship at a baby's funeral today. Lydia had trisomy 18, and she was only expected to live for a few days, but she lived for 3 months. My heart was broken again as we sang. I wrote this poem years ago, and it says want I want to say, all over again.

Thursday, March 30, 2006


from a liquid room
eyes shut, body curled
I saw You
warm, surrounding

I saw You
sun-dappled days
grass and swingsets and books
embracing, accepting

I saw You
brave and scared
strong and safe

I saw You
strings and percussion
big yet close

from a dark room
eyes shut, body curled
I saw You
fierce and unprotective

I saw You
angry but hoping
wild and unsafe

I see You
warm and surrounding
embracing, accepting
strong and safe
big yet close
fierce and unprotective
wild and unsafe

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

All right, I'll post something. In fact, I would have anyway, because I like writing stuff. But a good empty threat now and again won't hurt you.

Did you know that every time I make universal statements like that, I think of how it could hurt you or whatever? There's a skeptic inside my brain. You probably want more examples. Okay. Like, let's say I say, "The worst thing that could happen is we waste 5 bucks." but inside my head I'm thinking, it would be much worse to be impaled on something, or spontaneously combust. How's that for an example?

The point is, you can't rule out an empty threat from harming you. There are just no guarantees in this life.

Last night the MOG and I went out to celebrate both of our birthdays, since we were on tour during the actual birth-days this year. We ate Chinese food and entertained the waiter, and then we walked over to Barnes and Noble to buy ourselves gifts from ourselves. I wanted a new Lisa Samson book, but they would have had to order it, and I'm not about delayed gratification.

I ended up in my second bookstore haunt, which is the books about writing. I'm more of a reader about writing than a writer. I stood there looking at them all, and getting pretty frustrated with myself. In the end, I bought The Idiots Guide to Writing a Novel and some hot chocolate. One step closer to reading about how to write!

Worst case scenario, I am eaten by wolves prior to writing my novel.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Oh, what's that? I owe you a blog? Well, maybe you owe me some comments! See, see how it's gonna be? All right then. Fine.

So, back to Friday. We drove to San Antonio from Dallas, and did our thing, which involved massive amounts of barbecue and then setting up and such. I did my duties and then stood by the door like some kinda puppy in the window. Finally, the convoy with my children arrived and I went and seized them and got a little choked up with no actual waterworks. It was such a relief to have them near me again.

Saturday we drove back to KC with JM and Andrew and our kids. For 15 hours. In a minivan. Richy, Jessica, Andrew, JM, R2, Toby, Brynn, guitar, suitcases, pillows, blankets, etc. Basically, we brought everything but legroom. For 15 hours. It was fun.
It's good to be back in KC, with my house and my bed and my babies. I might even be inspired to write some fiction in here, if I get some kind of sign that someone is reading this...

Today I went up to the Junior High to meet teachers and do Richy's IEP. That's right, I said Junior High. As in I will be putting my kid who still wears diapers in JUNIOR HIGH. Cue nervous. It was a good meeting. I really like his teacher for next year, even though it seems like he will need way more independence than he has now just to make it in there. That's part of their goals though, eventually. To prepare him for more independence, to transition to adulthood. I think this would be easier for me to process if he were bigger than a 5 year old.

The goals they made last year were fairly lofty, but I didn't argue because shoot, why not shoot for the stars? Anyway, this year the goals are more like, be able to identify numbers 1 through 5, learn how to sort by color, etc. Pretty low but very realistic.

Now, that's it. That's all I have to say and I'm tired now. Comment and inspire me to inspire you tomorrow.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I feel the need to explain, right up front, that the shirtless picture of the boys in the post below was a joke. No one would dare ride in such condition in our van, ever. They would develop frostbite and die. Charisma Mag would report "Up and coming worship band holds the faith after tragic loss of multiple team members to hypothermia" as well as the editorial about "Damned: could it have been judgment for all the dam jokes?"

Anyways, that disclaimer aside, I set my face to yesterday. We did a youth service, which was an hour, start to finish. After 10 years of this kinda thing, we are able to adapt the service to pretty much any model, even though sometimes You Are Holy by itself takes the better part of an hour. We did 30ish minutes of worship and then we lined up to give prophetic words. If you aren't really all up into the prophetic and whatnot, basically we pray for people, encouraging things. Sometimes God tells us stuff about people, and we pray encouraging things about what God told us, and usually it's right on. It's a faith-stretcher for us, and great for them.

So last night we did some of that, and then we prayed for healing. If you don't roll with all this, then hey! maybe you should. So far I talked about God reading your mail in a good way and then healing your injuries... does that sound like a bad thing? ;) Anyways, a lot of kids got healed. 15 or so said they were completely healed, most of sports injuries, ankles, ACL tears, one jammed/broken femur. Healing is my favorite. I would love to see people healed every day of my life.

After that, we did an acoustic lo-fi service for their college group, and then hit Fridays... I heart food.

In other news: Today is Richy and Rob's birthday! 32 years old... somewhere in this year, Richy and I will have spent half our lives together.

In other, other news, Hannah has a boyfriend. You're gonna love him.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

I am riding in a van. It’s what I’ve been doing for 2 weeks, and will be doing for another week. I sit in the back left corner in a pile of blankets, generally. Occasionally I am thrown out by a tall person needing to sleep or by Richy claiming the good corner and putting me over to the right, which is sunnier.

My row tends to be a little personalized. It’s not something I do on purpose. I just sit in my corner, and I get my Bible out, and then I set it over here. Then I put on some makeup and some earrings, and I put my “bling box” on the floor by my feet. Type a blog, set my laptop over here. And so on. By the time somebody else wants to sit back here, it’s like a snakeskin lounge with a disco ball.

Last night we were in Tucumcari, New Mexico, at a cowboy church. It was a relief to let our accents out for a run. I haven’t been doing a lot of recapping the services, since we’ve been running into more hosts that read this blog… :)

Every service is beautiful. We’ve never had a dud. God meets people and lives are changed, every night. It’s the best job in the world hands down, well, next to motherhood, that is.

Today we drive 8 or 9 hours to Fort Worth, where we will probably do our second fastest setup in the world of the history and then play tonight. Matt and Nate’s families will be meeting us there and traveling with for the next 3 events. I have to wait till Friday afternoon for my munchkins. All hail Viking Granny who has almost completed 3 weeks of solo parenting my children!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

To call it a rock would be an understatement, a mountain an exaggeration. It was a giant rock hill, with a natural arch. Worn smooth by water and time, it presented a challenge that our van full of adventurers could not deny. They demanded Nate pull over, and had the van doors open before we stopped rolling. I climbed out too, because 10 hours a day inside a van is sufficient for me. We stood across the road from Wilson’s Arch, its dusty red paths and angles cutting into a cloudless sky.

I went, because they went, and because we are at the end of an era, which is the beginning of an era, but still, an end. I was a part when it began, and I want to be with my covenant friends when they finish this chapter.

I scrambled behind the pack, trying to keep up, smaller rocks and boulders falling down the path behind me. I tried not to think of myself following those rocks down and breaking my crown. About halfway up, I got tired. 6000 feet elevation is hard on the lungs, and everything else. I sat on a sunny rock and watched the team go up to the top.

At that moment, I didn’t think I could go any further. But there they stood, victorious, overlooking the valleys and the hills and the thick black stripes of highway crisscrossing it all. Their voices rang out across the miles.

I didn’t want to climb the hill. Even more, I did not want to be left behind, and to miss what they were seeing, and most importantly, to see it with them. I came a little higher. The team spotted me and started calling encouragement. Richy was a little worried I would fall, telling me to stay still and not risk it.

I stood on the slope, out of breath and emotionally moved.I am tired of waiting while others take the risks. I am tired of sitting peacefully on a sunny rock while my team strain muscles and test the limits of their endurance, and make it.

I am not broken anymore. So, I climbed the hill.

I climbed the hill, and I stood at the top.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Driving to New Mexico today. We'll make it to Gallup tonight and then the rest of the way to Tucumcari tomorrow. I miss my kids. Luckily, there's some rowdies up in here.

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