Saturday, April 23, 2005

Definition of Marriage

Today I ran into a friend while I was at the fruit-and-vegetable store. Somehow we started talking about out kids (how often does that happen?). She told me she had two adult children living at home, and then said something funny: "We've been putting away $100 a month to pay for our daughter's wedding, and she's not even dating anyone. If she doesn't get married soon, I'm going to buy a new car."

That made me laugh, but it also dovetailed with other not-so-funny thoughts going through my head in recent hours about how society views marriage. It seems to me our society continues in various ways to bear fruit of the sexual revolution brought on by the pill, not the least of which is the dumbing down of marriage. If marriage no longer automatically means children (as it has since civilization began), then society can be free to redefine marriage in any number of new ways.

The discussions I've been part of are making me realize how truly postChristian society has become. It makes me appreciate the wisdom God had in producing a written document to last though time, not rewritten each time an event in history or science or technology produces social change.

Friday, April 22, 2005

Texas Star

Texas star Posted by Hello

Every spring I enjoy hunting wildflowers. Texas is ugly, I've said it many times. But there are so many beautiful wildflowers every spring, that it almost makes up for it. There are some hiking trails behind our workplace, so I took an hour's walk there the other day. I found several new flowers.

In other news, I took Gary shoe shopping today. He got two identical pairs of shoes, one brown and the other black, exactly like the two pairs he's throwing away. He's an easy man to live with.

I talked to Rachel this afternoon. She has made it through her first of two weeks of solo teaching and each day went well. She has had no time to do anything else, and has tons to do this weekend: preparing for teaching next week; homework for her one night class; work on her portfolio, etc. She was going to relax for a couple hours by attending a school musical which I expect she will enjoy. Thanks be to God for helping her to do so well this past week.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Down the Garden Path

flowery path Posted by Hello

In the winter of 1998, Gary ordered wildflower seeds over the internet and planted them in the strip of dirt between the sidewalk and the street in front of our house. The first spring they bloomed in an almost embarrassing flurry of showing off; cars would slow down as they passed by and people out for a Sunday stroll would stop and ask if they could take their family pictures in front of them. I think we counted 20 different species of wildflowers that came up that spring.

In the years intervening, we've gotten to observe the process of ecological succession as the dominant flowers (daisies and Mexican Hats) have crowded out others (poppies and toadflax). My husband was so taken with this process that he actually kept a spreadsheet for several years recording which species bloomed each year. (That makes him sound obsessive, doesn't it? Well, he is a scientist at heart :-) ) I have had to remind him (I also wanted to be a scientist when I grew up, but, alas...) that he is not an unbiased observer of this flower garden since he can often be found watering, and pulling out overly aggressive bunches, and even weeding it. Like you could actually weed a wildflower patch...they're all weeds!

On another topic, Rachel's solo student teaching continues to go well, though she is getting exhausted. She had two evaluations today, one by the supervising teacher and one by her professor. She didn't get a perfect evaluation, but her prof said she had improved a lot since the last evaluation. She brought home 6 stacks of papers to grade tonight, and she needs to do planning for next week, etc, etc. I hope she gets some sleep so she doesn't get sick. Keep praying for her.

Monday, April 18, 2005

Discretionary Spending

Sometimes we missionaries feel like we don't have enough money. But then other times, we are pleasantly surprised with more money than we "need," arriving unexpectedly from unexpected places. That happened to us three times recently. For example, today a check came labeled "discretionary." Isn't that a nice word? So I spent some of it discretionarily--including a ticket to go see my baby in Washington DC for a quick weekend trip in early May.

We also give thanks to God for providing for the last of Rachel's two college payments.

Speaking of Rachel, she did pretty well on her first day of solo teaching, but sounded near panic when she went on to describe all the other stuff she has to get done. I assured her I and others would keep praying for her.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Graduation Photos

Bluebonnets Posted by Hello

Rachel came home from college this past weekend. We expect this will be her last visit home until she graduates in just under four weeks. (Wow, I'm so excited that she is going to make it!) Anyway, we decided to try to take some photos to put with the graduation announcements. We tried the traditional photo in the bluebonnets. (This time of year you can see cars illegally parked along the freeway so people can take photos of their kids in the flowers. The police don't seem to mind.) But when we tried it, we didn't have much luck--wind blowing hair in her face, too much sun causing shadows, and squinting. Oh well, nice idea.

So next we went over to the park and found a shaded area in the scrub trees. That seemed to work a little better. Now I've got to somehow get one of the photos into her announcements.

Please pray for Rachel if you think of her these next two weeks when she will be doing solo student teaching.

trees Posted by Hello