Monday, September 15, 2014

Outback/Wilderness Sunday

season of creation outback Sunday poster

God of the covenanted faith-filled journey homeward, in the exodus desert you formed a people after your own heart as you led them toward the land of promise. We ask that you would lead us to trust you in our moment by moment wanderings, that we might freely serve as your gracious presence in the world. In Jesus' name, Amen!

Here's the Eucharistic Prayer I wrote for Season of Creation Year A in 2011:

Eucharistic Prayer Creation A – © leah chang 2011

Friday, September 12, 2014

random today 5

September Random Friday 5 original from Karla, who announces, "Hello Pals—Random – Today!!! Friday Five is back!

1. My all expenses paid sneak away anywhere this weekend would be a Caribbean Island with beach time and yummy food both days; I'll find a concert and dancing for Saturday evening.

2. What is for lunch today? No clue yet—maybe some non-fast food before or after the Gem Faire of No. 4.

3. Along that first-FF- Karla-ever-played theme, today I'm wearing:
• orange - green – purple – turquoise Indian plaid shirt from the Fashion Valley Old Navy store that tragically shut its doors three or four months ago (same shirt as in one of the recent Walgreen's "At the corner of happy and healthy" TV commercials);

• regular street length dark blue denim embroidered skirt from Kohl's via eBay;

• black flip-flops from Tar-Jay.
4. Along the Today Theme, today I'm going to Gem Faire after Friday fiving and doing some design.

5. Along the random theme, here's an "about" some of my favorite scents:
Natural: almost any fresh fruit or veggie—try peaches, garden tomatoes, grapefruit. Some flowers. The beach! The beach! That's "the beach except at low tide." City, country, beach, desert, absolutely anywhere after rainfall. Veggies, herbs, and spices sizzling on the stovetop or on the grill. Bread out of the oven (even the groc store variety wins this one).

Packaged: since I was a teenager, I've loved the smell of Gold Dial, and it's still my most frequent shower soap. Other than Dial, I used to avoid anything scented—there was that time back in my undergrad days I mistakenly bought non-unscented deodorant and fell over my feet returning to the store to exchange it However, as a more [chronologically] mature adult, I've started enjoying subtly scented body splashes and "fresh" scent deodorants, too, as long as the scent dissipates quickly. I bough several Bath & Body Works' now out of production grapefruit jasmine in the store and even a couple on eBay since B&BW phased it out, but it's so old now, I wouldn't trust any that remained.

Why about my fave smells: I realize everything is chemical, but I actually can recognize nature in fruits, veggies, beach, and in most flowers, too. I like those particular B&BW offerings because they don't have a sense of the fake and manufactured, and they even don't overwhelm the exterior of the store for a quarter mile or so.

Thanks, Karla! Love and joy back to you and everyone!

Monday, September 08, 2014

Land Sunday 2014

season of creation land Sunday poster

Holy God, you chose to live among us in a body formed from the soil of the earth and you promised to lead your people into an inalienable land you would show them; in your Spirit may we live faithfully to your call to steward the land, that it would become safe living space and produce life-sustaining food for all creation. In the name of Jesus the Christ, your son and our brother, Amen!

Here's the Eucharistic Prayer I wrote for Season of Creation Year A in 2011:

Eucharistic Prayer Creation A – © leah chang 2011

week of grace 06

I don't know if I'll continue these lists or not. Although I've blogged some about myself here on desert spirit's fire, this blogsite mostly has been what I refer to as "my more formal theology." I may start a new blog more focused on my own life after I relocate in a month or so, and then possibly continue these lists. Or possibly not.

1. This year I've already designed some posters and Facebook cover pics for all four for Season of Creation Sundays in September. Posted them as a group on Facebook, and I'll blog them separately here for each Season of Creation week.

2. Labor Day Festival of Sail 2014 on the Embarcadero of the Big Bay!

3. Monday I posted a baker's dozen Festival of Sail pics on Facebook and even may get a few on my urban blog this year.

4. Yummy dinner at the Panda Place on Labor Day after Festival of Sail: Chop – Wok – Sizzle – Serve – Smile!

5. Love the five pound bag of freshly dug russet baked potatoes!

6. That MTS new Rapid #235 bus indeed is "One Sweet Ride!" I rode it both going to and coming back from Festival of Sail.

7. Another innings of Thrifty Ice Cream: Mint Chocolate Chip and Pecan Praline. That store still has a truncated Ice Cream menu, so once again I couldn't get Medieval Madness.

8. Short trip to Rummage (yard, garage, etc.) sale at the nearby ELCA, where I got a few fun things.

9. Saturday I posted a dozen non-ship pics on Facebook from my Labor Day trip to the Embarcadero.

Friday, September 05, 2014

visitor specials 5

3 dog mom hosts today's must see Friday 5

If someone told you they were coming to your city/state/country for the first time, what five things would you recommend that they be sure to see or do? This might be a city, national park, historic site, restaurant or other attraction. Have at it, and share the link to your blog in the comments below. Be sure to visit and comment on other participants’ efforts today, too. Oh, the places we can go!

Star of India

1. I'm concentrating only on this city because including state and country would make a blog post at least 100 items long! My header pic is Star of India, the oldest active sailing ship in the world! The annual Festival of Sail happened here last weekend, with sails around the Big Bay and visits by several other ships. Of those visitors, I especially love Bill of Rights with her fabled history, and American Pride with her handsomely distinctive red sails. However, I'm featuring Star of India because San Diego is her home port—as it also is for Californian, the official Tall Ship of the Republic of California.

2. This is the Unified (air, sea, land) Port of San Diego, and Tijuana-San Ysidro is the busiest land border in the world. Because the world is post-911, crossing into Mexico and then back into USA no longer is the hop, skip, and jump it used to be, but you'll still probably enjoy being a turista along Avenida RevoluciĆ³n and maybe even venture into some of side streets and byways.

3. In Southern California indeed we do have four seasons! To experience real autumn, go into the Julian mountains during the next couple months for a slice of apple pie. A little later on during January or February, the town of Julian and environs will offer you that winter snow experience.

4. Maybe particularly during spring, and probably especially if it's a spectacular blooming year, you need to visit the Anza-Borrego Desert.

5. You probably would like to spend an hour or a day on the beach when you visit this coastal desert? Pacific Beach and Mission Beach are popular, crowded, and noisy—for a bit more class and comfort, try La Jolla Shores or Windansea.

Thursday, September 04, 2014

Forest Sunday 2014

season of creation forest Sunday poster

God of all creation, God of all seasons, you made rivers and streams and planted a garden; trees grew out of the ground and the earth breathed. May we receive and retain your life-giving Spirit that we would faithfully care for the rivers, the gardens and the forests, so that everything in creation would continue to breathe in wholeness and health, to the glory of your name, amen!

Here's the Eucharistic Prayer I wrote for Season of Creation Year A in 2011:

Eucharistic Prayer Creation A – © leah chang, 2011

Sunday, August 31, 2014

week of grace 05

I so still need to work at being more observant, but I'm still posting a list this week.

1. This year I remembered to start designing for Season of Creation—four Sundays in September.

2. Gotta love the kittens!

3. No. 3 is a sketchbook again, this time it's getting yet another Academie sketchbook through Amazon Vine; this one's lighter weight paper, and slightly different 11" x 7 ⅞" dimensions.

4. I got the book cover design contract! Thought my bid might have been too late, but evidently not. Yay, me!

5. Thrifty ice cream again! Rainbow (orange, raspberry, lime) Sherbet and Coconut Pineapple.

6. Singing the National Anthem before the Friday evening Padres – Dodgers game at Petco Park.

7. Before walking onto the field, we sang the doxology in the tunnel (did I mention this was a churches choir?).

8. Padres 3, Dodgers 2, in bottom of 12th inning.

9. Another innings of Thrifty Ice Cream: Mint Chocolate Chip and Butter Pecan..

11. Town-and-Gown Church's electric meter now is going backwards—technically solar installation is in a test phase, but basically it's done.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

week of grace 04

I so need to work at being more observant. I know I've been in several places where for sure I could have added to my emerging bicycles photo gallery, but did catch one that I remembered.

1. Writing and posting a blog for August's "connection" synchroblog.

2. Two scoops of Thrifty ice cream again―this time Pistachio and Pecan Praline—always such a difficult decision!

3. Finding an 8.5" x 11" Academie sketchbook on sale to complete my set of three different sizes.

4. Serving as liturgist for Wednesday evening Vespers.

5. Dale Wood's amazing, stunning, stark, angular, dorian mode setting of the Magnificat in LBW Evening Prayer deserves a line of its own. It's truly a genius piece, with a melody range of only a single octave, d to d, no accidentals anywhere in melody or accompaniment. It also gets my wondering why the fairly recent ELW didn't include it?!

6. Getting to take the very first shower ever in the new tub in the new bathroom!

7. Greek salad for lunch at Panera.

8. Two menus to design this week! One of my fave things, and they always make excellent portfolio pieces!

9. Getting to read and comment on another of T's sermons.

10. Happy to be back sleeping in my bedroom after a month of upstairs bathroom renovation, etc.

11. A few more pics toward my future bicycles photo gallery for blog and Facebook design page.

12. Savory Fish Taco—as always, I added cilantro/ onion from the salsa bar and got to think how cool that cilantro is manna, though these green leaves definitely are not the Bread of Heaven part of the plant.

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.