Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Magical Pencils

I tutor. That's my job. I have 5 kids who, being forced to attend two hours of tutoring after all day at school, are rather rambunctious. I use whatever I can to keep the peace. Sometimes as a reward for good behavior I let them use my mechanical pencils. Hey, if it works, right?

None of the kids know what the mechanical pencils are really called. Devin has demanded "Kaman-ical" pencils, Joshua has politely asked for "one of them Mech-chem-animal" ones. Needless to say, I will not correct them or add "mechanical" to their spelling tests. It's kinda cute. It makes it worth it to tutor 5 hyper kids for two hours at a time when I'm asked if, please, they could, in the words of Tobias the first grader, use one of my "Magical" pencils.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Mr Bob Sweeney

Mr Bob Sweeney is my Mailbox Friend. We often check our mail at the same time in the afternoon. We met one day last spring when I ran out to vigorously greet my husband home from work. I have a tall (and attractive) husband who stands up well to having a wife thrown at him, so this is what he often gets. It's fun. After I threw myself at Jon and got a kiss in return, I went to check the mail, pretending that I was the least bit grown-up, and was greeted by an older man who introduced himself (it was Mr Sweeney) and said that that was the sweetest thing he had seen in a long time. His wife, Anne, is in a nursing home with Alzheimer's and he said he was encouraged by our obvious love.

It was a really nice thing for him to say and probably more encouraging for the newly married couple working our way through our first year of marriage "with fear and trembling" than for him. Today I saw him again and we talked about his son that went to UVA, how Jon was doing in flight school and Anne. Jon and I just celebrated our first anniversary - they just celebrated their fiftieth. He said Anne can no longer speak or use her hands & legs. She's basically bed-ridden. "She's comfortable. I guess she's happy," he said almost trying to convince himself, "or at least resigned..." In his voice was no trace of selfishness or frustration at the inconvenience of visiting a wife twice a day who can't respond to him, much less fulfill any of his needs. He was only concerned for her happiness. His frustration was at his inability to make her more happy and more comfortable.

I almost hugged him. I've never had a Mailbox Friend, and who knew when I got one that he would be exactly what I want to be when I grow up. I hope that the gratitude I feel right now for what Jon and I enjoy together stays. I hope that I remember Mr Bob Sweeney's selfless love every time I am tempted to be selfish with my husband. And most of all, I can't wait till I get to meet Mr & Mrs Sweeney in heaven, and the four of us can hang out. And I can say thank you to them for the encouragement their faithfulness brought to our baby marriage. I can't help thinking how lovingly Jesus looks at this whole painful time in the Sweeney's life and thinks how very much Mr Sweeney's love for his wife looks like the way Christ "loved the church and gave Himself up for her".

And that is the account to-date of my Mailbox Friend Mr Bob Sweeney, who looks just like Jesus.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

APA Format Says to Only Capitalize Words With More Than Three Letters. bob.

Today, while driving home from work, I was stopped behind a truck with a bumper sticker reading, "I fish. ((picture of a fish)) I VOTE."

...Please pause to reflect...

Perhaps this doesn't strike anyone else as odd. (OR perhaps it doesn't strike anyone in Pensacola (aka: "Redneck Riviera") as odd.) Honestly, though, I can't see that fishing aligns a person with any particular political party, thus striking fear into the hearts of members of the opposite political party when viewed on a bumper sticker. Crazy liberals probably get mad when they see "I love Rush Limbaugh and I Vote" stickers. I may get scared when radical hippies display their right to vote, but I'm just not sure what to think when fishermen staunchly proclaim the same rights.

Maybe drivers are supposed to read into the truck stuck to the sticky end of the bumper sticker. Maybe it says, "I don't care about the environment. I love ozone-depletion." or "I use the bed of this truck to haul reclaimed lumber so that we don't needlessly waste trees. I love ozone."

I don't know. Maybe it's just the most refreshing opinion about the current election precisely because it doesn't try to make sense. In which case, I want one.

"I Hang Out. ((picture of a pinata)) I VOTE."

Monday, October 20, 2008

Just a Thought

Hopefully I will soon put up a fun or funny post. Bear with me, however, as this is a beautifully-put opinion, and perhaps warning to Americans, about the upcoming election from Lori Kalner, a Christian woman who watched Germany turn sour during the 30's and 40's and survived the ensuing Holocaust. Keep in mind, that I don't believe Kalner is suggesting that Obama will lead us to another Holocaust, nor do I suggest that myself by this post. This article merely points out the progession of moral compromises that lead to the downfall of a society and a nation. If we cannot vote for a perfect candidate, let's vote for someone who upholds the way of Christ, regardless of their appearance as a "good man".

"Good Americans, like the good Germans of my youth, many think that the issue of their nation centers around the economy. I tell you now that the fate of the greatest nation on earth does not depend on money.
Every issue must only be judged worthy and true by the Word of God. Prosperity comes to a nation and a people who serve the Lord first. That is a basic spiritual principle which is seen in every book of Holy Scripture.
But here is the TRUTH: of all men in the US government this Obama has most strongly encouraged and urged the on-going slaughter of the unborn... "the useless mouths" of America. This slaughter is performed in the name of "A woman's reproductive rights."*
In the land of my birth, the Holocaust all began with the first step of legalized abortion. Abortion was ENCOURAGED by a downturn in the world economics.
Scripture teaches us the survival of a nation is not about the economy. the only nation which will stand is the nation which follows the Lord and the true teachings of scripture."

"If my people, who are called by My Name, will humble themselves, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sin and heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

*A note from a not-very-smart-person who studied biology. Scientifically, life begins at conception. (I am not even arguing the Bible here.) If life begins at conception, then a fetus is NOT scientifically (or morally) part of that woman's body, any more than (forgive the analogy) a parasite is genetically part of a cat's intestinal tract. How, then, is abortion not murder for selfish gain?

Friday, October 10, 2008

Many are the roles of the military wife. She must be supportive, creative, outgoing (or she won't have any friends), patient and flexible. I am not yet any of these things, but I do try. Below I am practicing "supportive" and "cook", which wasn't on the list, but I suppose it should be.


(Those are Walnut-Encrusted Pork Chops, for the curious. But it doesn't qualify as "creative", because I got the recipe from Cooking Light.)

Monday, October 6, 2008

Today, I got a message from some Florida politicians about voting. They addressed the item of mail to the "Butterfield Family", which is the first time EVER we've gotten something mailed to our family. Hurray! We're a family!

Here's a picture of my lovely family :). It is old (from Christmas), but Jon's computer doesn't have any new pictures. What an adorable family, eh?

I think the Christmas tree in the background adds to the familiness of the photo.

Friday, October 3, 2008

A must watch! AND PASS ON!

Bush pushed for economic reform pertaining to subprime mortgages in '03. McCain pushed for economic reform pertaining to subprime mortgages in '05 and again in '07, but was out-voted. Barack Obama pushed the opposite way. He pushed to force banks to give low-income, high-risk lenders mortgages AND he made mone off Fannie Mae, and still is making money from his friends from Fannie Mae in campaign donations.

Watch the video, but be prepared to pause it. It goes fast. It's 10 minutes and it's VERY worth it.