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4th-May-2014 07:21 pm - Within the walls, a wide world...
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At church today, the conversations included...

  • a friend telling me during coffee hour that she wants Stephen Paulus's The Road Home played at her memorial service

  • another friend telling me during morning songs that she wants Jason Shelton's Morning Has Come played at her memorial service

  • plans for a veteran's birthday gathering

  • The topics also included:

  • the college selection, application, and financing process. The child in question is planning to major in marine biology.

  • grant applications (i.e., chatting with the head of a lab)

  • completing albums (the chief's daughter is a musician)

  • Wendell Berry. My hiking partner and her husband went to hear him at a fundraiser last weekend.

  • blue-eyed grass

  • vegan food

  • a riff on Richard III in a recent cartoon

  • In other news, I'm about to head to session 5 of my yoga studio's thirty-day challenge. (I had an earlier class on my calendar -- and slept right through my alarm. Whoops.) And, I'm seeing zinnia seedlings in the pots on my deck. Wheeee!

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    13th-May-2013 03:43 pm - Mother's Day at church
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    At the start of the service, the choir sang Ysaye Barnwell's arrangement of Kahlil Gibran's "On Children":

    Your children are not your children
    They are the sons and daughters of life's longing for itself
    They come through you but they are not from you
    And though they are with you they belong not to you

    You can give them your love but not your thoughts
    For they have their own thoughts
    You may house their bodies but not their souls
    For the souls dwell in a place of tomorrow
    Which you cannot visit
    Not even in your dreams

    You can strive to be like them
    But you cannot make them just like you

    Rev. Gail preached about family and community, and how individuals possess both the desire to belong and the desire for freedom -- the challenge being as a family member (by blood or by choice) to nurture the people we love in such a way that they also feel free to be themselves.

    Midway through the sermon, she stated that the largest category of households in the United States consists of people who live alone, which was true of our congregation -- and that the majority of that group at FUUN live alone by choice. She quoted a member of the congregation who had said to her, "I'm looking for someone to date -- but there's NO WAY I'm looking for someone to marry!" This was greeted with a wave of laughter -- and a heartfelt "Amen!" bellowed from the middle of the sanctuary, which triggered a second wave of laughter.

    Maybe ten years ago, a group at church performed another Sweet Honey in the Rock piece, "No Mirrors in My Nana's House." This animated version of it (Chris Raschka illustrations) is a joy:

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    14th-Oct-2012 07:50 pm - notes about church and dinner
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    * the pleasure of wearing a favorite dress on an ordinary Sunday
    * a violist with the Nashville Symphony/Alias played a Bach courante (from suite #6) after the call to worship, as well as harmony on the hymns and a Faure pavane during the offertory. Lovely stuff.
    * the Story for All Ages was about Henry Bergh, a Unitarian who founded the ASPCA.
    * the meditation was "Avalokiteshvara Dharani," a Buddhist chant.
    * our church placed first in this year's AIDS walk, raising $18,200. Wow!

    My original plan was to spend the afternoon at my easel, but tiredness took over, so I ended up sacking out on the sofa. For dinner, I made a variation of Melissa Clark's crispy tofu recipe:

    crispy tofu with long beans

    (I didn't have peanut oil, so I used sesame. The shiitake mushrooms weren't soft enough by the time I started cooking, so I skipped them. Instead of pork, I cooked half of the long beans I picked up at Shreeji's yesterday. Instead of chicken broth, I used water. Instead of saving the green parts of the scallions for garnish, I mixed them in with the soy and mirin and dumped them into the pan at the same time. And I tossed in a spoonful of minced garlic because I felt like it.)

    [Clark won't mind. One of the themes of In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite is how she and her mother seldom follow recipes as written. :-) ]

    I also broiled two chicken breasts and made a quick sauce for it by combining orange juice and mustard. Some of it blended with the soy-mirin-garlic glaze on my plate, and that tasted really good, so I might try that combo on purpose later this week. (The Turnip Truck had some aging tofu on sale today...)

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    7th-Apr-2012 01:03 am - ever ancient, ever new
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    After visiting the Acropolis, last October, Saz and I walked back toward and through the Plaka. On our way down, we encountered a poem:

    on a church wall in Athens

    We later spotted it on several other buildings in Athens, but in this first instance, it had been spraypainted onto the wall of the Church of St. Elisseos. It's that square just to the right of the green door:

    my big sis peering up the street

    If I hadn't seen it up close -- were I looking at this picture for the first time -- I'd be assuming that the square was a metal screen or decorative cutout within the wall.

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