Tuesday, November 04, 2014

Trivia, Stuff, Bits, Pieces

The blog tour of Footprints on the Ceiling starts Monday, November 10th.  There will be a book giveaway with each post.


 I have been teaching the junior Sunday school class, a squirrelly bunch of 10-year-olds who talk a lot more than I did at their age, I think, but I am not going to contact my dad to verify this.

We have been wading through lots of Old Testament kings going off to battle.  There is much of the Old Testament that I don't understand, and much more that is difficult to relate to ten-year-olds.  The most practical application --we Mennonites love the term 'practical application'-- seems to be about how to face big obstacles and fear.

One Sunday I said, "Ok, we're going to go around the circle, and first I want you to tell me something you're thankful for, and then we'll go around and you tell me something you're afraid of."

One boy piped up, "For me it's the same thing!  My dad!"

I decided that was not necessarily a bad thing, considering.

Another child, asked to say what she's afraid of, exclaimed, "Satan and the dark and spiders!"

I thought, yes.  That about covers it.

Spiders seem to be a recurring theme, in addition to Old Testament kings.  I'm surprised how many of them, boys and girls alike, are seriously afraid of spiders but not of snakes.  I am the opposite, and despite my fears of tall grass, I think I have it easier than they do.  Snakes do not make nests in the ceiling light fixtures, at least not here in Oregon.

Jehoshaphat sent people into battle with a choir singing praises.  There's something powerful about that.  Try it next time you encounter a spider, I told the kids.  Or the dark.

The enemy armies were going to be coming up the gorge at the Cliff of Ziz, Second Chronicles says, and I think that is the most wonderfully Dr. Seussian phrase in the Bible.

Last Sunday I reseated everyone to try to cut down on the talking.  Boy-girl-boy-girl, despite the protests, and one boy exclaimed, "You're the preacher's wife!  You're supposed to be nice!"

I laughed and laughed, but I intend to keep on being mean.

So, ever since the Bible became a slick and marketed item sometime in the 90s, there's been a special Bible for every slice of humanity.  "The Medical Worker's Bible."  "The Women's Devotional Bible."  "The Farmer's Bible."  "The Safeway Grocery Sacker's Bible."  You get the picture.

I have written before about the strange mail you get when your husband is the school principal.  On Sunday, this was in our box at church.

I thought that was very odd, in addition to taking the specific-audience Bible marketing much too far.

I opened the envelope.  Then I rolled my eyes and exhaled in a long OhForeverMoreYou'veGotToBeKidding, like I do when I finally get Emily's terrible puns.

It uses the term "Bible" in the sense of "a publication that is preeminent especially in authoritativeness or wide readership"--Merriam-Webster online.

It offers descriptions and pictures of thousands of drugs so Paul as principal can identify what he finds in backpack pockets, I guess.

Praise God this is not something he's had to deal with, so far.

Today I spoke to the Junction City Garden Club, a group of 44 women, many of them in their 80s, who take on ambitious beautifying projects such as planting daffodils all along the railroad tracks.

I usually put this demographic to sleep, especially if I don't have a microphone, but they were engaged and awake and were actually able to hear me and asked lots of questions.

So I had lots of fun.

I suggested they take on Bruce Witmer's unfinished project of planting daffodils all the way from Harrisburg to Halsey, but somehow they weren't leaping out of their seats to volunteer for this.

Last week my friends Bonnie and Rita showed up with an overloaded "Thirty-One" tote bag full of groceries, cards, gift cards, and other gifts, all from the church, for Pastor Appreciation Month.

It was unbelievable.  In fact, digging reverently through it, I repeated the word Un.Be.Liev.A.Ble about 25 times.

I also cried because it was just so amazing.

Your pastor and his wife would be greatly encouraged if you did the same, just so you know.

Matt is growing potatoes in a plastic tote in his new apartment in Washington, DC.  This makes me happy.

My college kids, Ben and Emily, keep finding errors in their professors' work.  Ben's teacher wrote a quiz question about a situation that is physically impossible, involving two balls on pulleys in water with a layer of oil on top, and the density of the one ball was supposed to be.....well, that's all I remember, but Ben says it can't work because the pulley can only apply pressure up, not down, and the pressure of the ball would keep it half in and half out of the water.  Or something.

Emily's grammar teacher says that "Dani was the girl who was chased by the dog," is incorrect, and "who" should be "whom."  Emily feels this is incorrect.  Other examples have much more blatantly violated everything Emily was taught in high school.

Neither Ben nor Emily feels free to express their concerns to the instructors.  I am being a good mom and letting them figure it out.

Quote of the Day:
"If I make coffee, it wakes you up.  If Mom makes coffee, you have to wake it up before you can drink it."


  1. I don't catch every one of your posts, but when I do, they always leave me feeling calm and happy. Thank you for your bits and pieces that remind me there is some sanity in the world!

  2. I couldn't begin to wade through a question on engineering, but as for the other error, Emily is correct.

  3. Yes, do tell Emily that this English major agrees with her!

  4. Love the QOTD!

  5. Habitual grammar corrector11/06/2014 5:52 AM

    Emily's teacher makes the mistake of many people in over-correcting I and Me; because me is used instead of I incorrectly so many times, then they want to use it correctly and say I when it should be me! Our teacher always told us that he, she=who and him, her=whom. That helped me keep it straight. Oh, and tell Emily that you do correct people's grammar! :)

  6. I enjoyed this so much...It gives me many opportunities to laugh and I did laugh. So much so that mom asked about the laughter and I was able to share and make the cook in the kitchen (who could hear us) laugh as well.
    Thanks for you help in keeping me young (the laughing)
    I'm looking forward to this blog book tour. I'm still following two bloggers from your last book tour.

  7. The Baritone11/06/2014 9:45 PM

    "Dani was the girl WHOM was chased by the dog," ?? (word changed by me to reflect what seems to be the opinion of the teacher)
    You gotta be kidding, a college professor thinks this is correct? Wow...

  8. Do you have a list of all those on the blog tour?

  9. Baritone--yes. Not only does this professor use this sort of grammar, she also wrote her own textbook and charges over $60 for the e-version. Sigh.
    Aurelia-check more recent posts.

  10. Hmm what does Steven put in his coffee? And yeah, if they are in college they need to pick their own battles.