Tuesday, August 19, 2014

touch of life: August Synchroblog

August Synchroblog on wordpress

august synchroblog connectionA single word prompt and an image!

Connection immediately triggered "It's not what you know or who you know―it's who knows you" that determines your success out there in the world. But as I enjoyed the illustrations of various kinds of human connections, I remembered social and professional connections aren't the only kind. However, they're the type of connection I still obsess about a lot.

Recent internet quote: "Everybody needs community and loving friendship and a place where they belong." I've blogged what I've been able about my too many experiences of losing friendships and connections with too many people I believed I'd grow older with. Even more perplexing, I've been unable to reweave anything remotely resembling the personal friendships and professional colleagues an individual person needs to keep on keepin' on. Back then, it seemed simple. I'd invite an acquaintance to join me for lunch or for a snack or another activity. We'd start talking, get together again, and soon I'd be connected to, touching others I'd meet through that very first new connection. But it has not been that simple. I still need what I describe as a "community of recognition, acknowledgment, and participation." I still need a place of belonging minus the rude remarks and exclusive behavior that have become too common. It's one thing to sneak around, pretend I don't have the background I have, because in at least some of those cases, quite a few people have been willing to meet me where they think I am. But presenting myself that way is a type of false witness to my own realities! Troubles and exclusion ensue when I do admit my background, needs, losses, and desires to participate and contribute. All that internet connecting most of us have been up to is fine as far as it goes, but like the examples in the picture prompt, I need to touch and be touched again with a hug, a knowing glance, a smile. The gospel is physical—something you can feel, smell, taste, hear, and see. I need someone to connect to, to bring me back to life.

Enough said for now. I'm tagging his post with #synchroblog and with #life stuff, hoping (against hope?) someone will look through a few of my other "life stuff" posts.

other August synchrobloggers:

Jerry Wirtley – Connection
Sara Quezada – Can You Really Know Someone In A Different Language?
Ford – Interindependence
Michael Donahoe – Connection
Minnow – Our Dis-Connect
Justin Steckbauer – Connection in Love, it’s what Life is all about!
Carol Kuniholm – Disengagement and Connection
Wesley Rostoll – Finding Jesus In Different Places
Doreen A Mannion – A bunny, a fawn and some geese walk into a bar …
Leah Sophia – Touch of Life
Karen “Charity” Aldrich – Wuv True Wuv
Abbie Watters – Connection – Addicted to the Buzz
Liz Dyer – Human Connection and the Power of Empathy
Loveday Anyim – Why Get Connected to God when He can’t be there for Me?

Sunday, August 17, 2014

week of grace 03

I'm slowly learning to be more present in the moment so my lists will get longer and better. I realize Tara has been at this for quite a while; she's still the model I'm lookin' to.

1. Conclusion of VBS worship last Sunday at Church Around the Corner... it actually was standard every-other-Sunday casual format Eucharist followed by some of the VBS kids/ campers singing one of the songs they learned.

2. Serving as organist Wednesday evening for brief Eucharist celebrating Mary, Mother of Jesus – Theotokos (bearer of the eternal Word) – at Church On The Hill. I even used the zimbelstern for the Alleluias at the end of the final stanza of Ye Watchers and Ye Holy Ones!

3. First trip of the season to DQ on Thursday evening! I had a medium caramel sundae. It's always a temptation to size up when the next size is only 20¢ more. So I did.

4. It was wonderful to hear the sounds of solar panels being installed on the roof of Town-and-Gown when I was there on Friday practicing for Sunday.

5. Enjoying third Saturday lunch group from the PCUSA where I used to be involved. Especially fun to sit and talk with folks other than my "usual" table companions.

6. Excited to find a colorful bicycle outside Town-and-Gown when I got there this morning, so I made a great beginning on the bicycles photo group I've long wanted to do for my urban blog and my Facebook design page.

7. Getting my ticket for the Friday, 19 August Padres/Dodgers game at Petco. Just like last year, I'll be singing the National Anthem at a MLB game—with at least a couple hundred others! This year we have better, more expensive by $7 tickets, but I trust we'll still have an awesome view of the city and the people at the game.

8. I got more retweets and fave tweets than usual this past week, partly due to my being a little more industrious with actual tweets, rather than auto-tweets from blog or fb. 6,000+ tweets and counting on my suntreeriver twitter acct.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

week of grace 02

A few years ago a therapist reminded me try to notice, appreciate and celebrate micro joys such as gently falling powder, a freshly picked berry. Related to noticing and observing, this past week at Vacation Bible School we talked about "God sightings" with the kids―needless to say, those would include aspects of nature such as flowers, trees, beaches, mountains, along with human interactions. Part of me says "but God's presence is hidden and paradoxical, as in the sacraments," yet there still remains a sense in which we can recognize in retrospect how God was there at that time! Here's a short second blog post of the past week's graces in review; for sure I need to do lots better about noticing and recording those small pleasures.

1. Five mornings of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner!

2. A clean place to stay with two kittehs and one doggeh while the guys detoxed the mold in the house (along with tearing up floors and part of a bathroom).

3. Yummy Belgian waffles four mornings in a row!

4. Serving as organist for Wednesday evening's brief eucharist for the second take this (calendar and liturgical) year of the Feast of the Transfiguration.

5. Returning "home" to a house still not put back together, but with a fair amount of progress and tolerable air that doesn't smell too too bad.

6. Fresh, hot pizza from the Towne Square store after the VBS set strike party early Friday afternoon.

Friday, August 08, 2014

VBS 2014 day 5

Pictures from the final day of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner, "CAC." These open full-size in a new browser tab or window, "depending on your settings." I've done my best to format these with non-traditional (not laptop, not desktop) devices in mind.

VBS 2014 song time VBS 2014 tree again
VBS 2014 heart on door VBS 2014 on the floor
VBS 2014 snacks VBS 2014 almost everyone
VBS 2014 tail ending VBS 2014 God sightings tree VBS 2014 tree and wall
VBS 2014 Clairemont Lutheran Sign

Thursday, August 07, 2014

VBS 2014 day 4

Pictures from the fourth, next to last day of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner, "CAC." These open full-size in a new browser tab or window, "depending on your settings."

VBS 2014 tree VBS 2014 hearts on door
VBS 2014 heart on door VBS 2014 tree and CCSA
VBS 2014 CCSA backpacks
VBS 2014 backpacks on set

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

VBS 2014 day 3

Pictures from the third day of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner, "CAC." These open full-size in a new browser tab or window, "depending on your settings."

VBS 2014 group listen VBS 2014 tree
VBS 2014 together VBS 2014 talking
VBS 2014 tree pinning VBS 2014 in the round
VBS 2014 hearts VBS 2014 more hearts

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

VBS 2014 day 2

Pictures from the second day of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner, "CAC." These open full-size in a new browser tab or window, "depending on your settings."

VBS 2014 singing
VBS 2014 snacks VBS 2014 snacking VBS 2014 more snacks
VBS 2014 yummy VBS 2014 tree VBS 2014 cooking show

Monday, August 04, 2014

VBS 2014 day 1

Pictures from the first day of Vacation Bible School at Church Around the Corner, "CAC." These open full-size in a new browser tab or window, "depending on your settings."

VBS 2014 outside sign
VBS 2014 tree VBS 2014 weird critters
VBS 2014 shirts VBS 2014 fun
VBS 2014 snacks VBS 2014 songs

Sunday, August 03, 2014

week of grace 01

Thanks to Tara of Praying on the Prairie, who inspired me to blog a summary of blessings highlights from the past week. Finally I’m picking up her idea—for now I've decided on the word "grace." Just as Tara does, this is a simple list without explanation or commentary. And as she usually adds, every week includes blessings too numerous and abundant to count, so here's more than a dozen highlights in more or less chronological order—with pics, too, at least this time!

1. Santa Fe Amtrak depot San Diego / Pacific Surfliner

2. Union Station Amtrak depot Los Angeles

3. Seventh and Hope!

4. Chapel of Peace

5. Vacation Bible School Songs & Scripture

singing morning again

6. portrait project

7. handprints project


8. check out this major bubble!

major bubble

9. rice and beans service project

10. street view past piano and font


11. drum circle

drum circle

12. a clear view of Summer Pops Friday fireworks over The Big [San Diego] Bay

13. short and light Saturday afternoon rain

14. beginning another new week of grace

Friday, August 01, 2014

what's in a name friday 5

what's in a name 5 on the revgals site

1. There's no real story behind my name, but my first name originally was my middle name, and a couple of people bestowed my unofficial, non-legal middle name "Sophia" on me because they perceived me as wise. Yay, me!!!

2. Currently I have two kittehs. Alley Malibu arrived as "Alley," because my neighbors found him as a kitten in a nearby alley. At that time I had Pumpkin Marigold or "PM," so decided to give Alley a middle name starting with M so he could be AM. There's a famous Malibu beach on the west coast where we live, and when I was on the east coast, we had a small urban Malibu strip beach.

3. I've never ever named vehicles or household items, but I've known of a few folks that have; it could be a fun thing.

4. Do I daydream about a name for a boat, novel, business? My curren design business is suntreeriver design! Sun and tree and and river are persistent biblical themes. I also have a funkier, more casual, second line for my graphic design: citysafari. I love cities, I love the safari concept, so brought both together. In the past I've designed as City Lights, City Delights, and simply as myself when I just did casual now and then freelance gigs.

5. Although I've had an idea and starting bibliography for a book related to ecological theology for about ten years, I probably wouldn't publish under a pseudonym because I love attention too much to do that! However, I've carefully chosen my shekinah jubilee email (don't use that one every day any more), as well as my river song tag on youtube and elsewhere. I wanted either sundayriver or riversong in gmail, but with both taken, I use sundayriversong for my main address. I also have suntreeriverdesign on gmail, and, of course, for my facebook page and my non-fb site.

Saturday, July 26, 2014

God's Word for Gardeners NIV Bible

God's Word for Gardeners NIV Bible: Grow Your Faith While Growing Your Garden by Shelley Cramm on Amazon

gardeners bible coverWhen Amazon Vine offered me a review copy of this bible with devotions and commentary centered on garden, ground, soil, weather, and seasons, I sprung for it! I'm not a gardener, but I've known some gifted ones; what's more, I write a lot of theology with an ecological focus on creation—earth, sky, sun, land, sacraments.

Book description and other reviewers have outlined a lot of the content, so I don't need to duplicate what they've said. Although I didn't intend to reread much of the scriptural text before writing my review, I did want to read enough of the notes and devotions to get a sense of the general style. I found myself turning to the next section, the next one, and the next one; I also started making fairly extensive notes I plan to keep in a separate notebook. I love the more scientific botanical descriptions of geography and plant life alongside the plainer ones a typical non-gardener like myself easily can understand. The book's arrangement lets you read the scriptural account and discover plant and geography facts on nearby pages.

This isn't quite a study bible in the usual sense of the word, but with the other enthusiastic reviewers, I agree it is amazing, and I know I will keep on enjoying the devotional pieces by Shelley Cramm (by others, too?), as I continue growing my knowledge of the land where the story of salvation began, the bountiful yet fragile land that remains one of God's promises and commandments to the people of God, the stuff of divine self-revelation and gift in the sacraments. I expect this Gardener's Bible also will become a regular reference book.

Regarding format, having some awareness of the price of paper, printing, and ink, and also realizing most people want a reasonably lightweight bible they easily can carry to church, to a study group, to the park, or to a retreat, I appreciate that this Gardener's Bible isn't too bulky, but still would have preferred better quality paper (not necessarily India) and slightly larger type (not necessarily large or giant), even whilst keeping only the single green color in addition to basic black. Along similar lines, more openness and space on non-scripture pages would have been nice, and would have added only minimally to the heft or price. And the cover is simply beautiful! It's the kind of book you want to place atop all the others!

my amazon review: a beautiful bible for those who love the land!