Sunday, March 30, 2008

Instead of doing my Systematic Theology Stuff...

I'm going to write a little bit about an observation I have made.

SiteMeter allows me to see some basic information about who is reading my blog. As a part of this, it allows me to see search words that land people on my site.

Lately, I have noticed people have stumbled onto my blog by searching with the words, "Will Spring ever come?" This has me wondering a great deal about this thought. We here in SeminaryTown, as well as in many areas across the midwest, have experienced a very rough winter. I don't really know how it's been in other places, but I can only imagine it has been fairly rough for a lot of places.

So, it seems to me that people are definitely ready for spring. And the fact that they are searching for answers online just solidifies this thought for me. Certainly, one would think that they don't truly expect to find answers online about when Spring will come. Technically, it's "here" already, what with us having observed the Spring Equinox and all, but the "feel" of Spring is still out of our grasp. Anyway, I digress.

These searchings have made me question about how people search in different places for answers. The Internet is a wonderful tool to discover information, to build community, and to have fun, among many other things. However, the Internet cannot tell us everything. It can tell us when Spring will get here like it can tell us when my Grandma is going to die from Congestive Heart Failure. And by this, I mean, it can't do this. My Grandma is different and the Internet doesn't know her, just like the Internet cannot pinpoint the exact hour and day that Spring will arrive to stay. It can give us ideas, but no definite answers.

And so, I think about how people search for meaning in life. Jobs, hobbies, education, families, etc, etc, etc are all things that people look to in order to give their lives meaning. I think that these things can definitely ADD meaning to life, but I don't think they are the meaning of life.

"God alone is the source of all life." So sayeth one of my esteemed professors. So, if God is the source of all life, one might think that God gives meaning to life. I think God does give meaning. God's care for the world is what allows life to exist. The saving relationship God has with humanity through Jesus Christ allows us to live, move, and have our being; freed from the threat of complete and total death when the Spirit moves us to recognize that God has taken death into God's self through Jesus Christ, and has defeated death.

So, answers about the meaning of life... I don't really have them. I just know that without the Triune God, my life would not have the meaning it has.

Holy Cow. I have Systematic Theology on the brain. I need to go before I hurt myself.

Saturday, March 29, 2008


Hey y'all. Thanks for your prayers. Grandma is doing better. I think she even went back to her nursing home yesterday. I maintain that she is a very strong woman. Looks like OB was wrong again (It's not a game; I'm just bitter).

Anyway, I just did the rest of my Greek posting for the week. This whole being late thing is not good. I think I'm going to start doing them on Wednesday or something. I don't want to flunk. Haha.

I need to go to bed now. I'm going to a party tomorrow, and I don't want to be a tired Trishy who has no personality due to fatigue.

Thanks again for all your prayers and thoughts of me. My life is brimming with wonderful people. Each and every one of you is a blessing; all in your own unique ways. Thanks so much.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Please Pray

Hello friends. Tonight, when I got back from SGW, I saw that I had a voice mail on my cell. I could tell from YS's tone of voice that something was up. I called her back. She said my grandma is in the hospital. Oldest Bro is at the hospital with her, and he said (once again), "I don't think she's going to live much longer."

Remember, he said that a few months ago, too.

I'm not glossing over her health. She's 94 years old. Of course she's not a spring chicken. But I think that the medicine they're going to give her is going to spruce her up this time. She's still a strong woman. She's old and her body is tiring out, but really, she's still really strong. I could be totally wrong, but OB is somewhat of an alarmist, and he doesn't really know what he's talking about when it comes to medical things. I'm no doctor, but I know a bit more than he does, in my humble opinion. I contemplated becoming a doctor before this ministry bit grabbed me.

Anyway, the point of this post is to ask you to keep my Granny in your prayers. You don't have to pray for her to get better, but I ask that you might pray for her to be aware that God's grace and love through Jesus Christ are always with her, and that she lives always in the horizon of God's mercy. Or say your own prayer. I trust you. And I trust God. Peace out.

My 400th Post

Easter break is over and it went pretty well. YS and I went and visited Ma at the SuperMax. They took her off the tranks she was on, and so she's a bit more chipper. She talked pretty much complete jibberish while we were there, but it was nice to see her smile.

I was anxious to get back though. I missed people. A lot. And I got some of my favorite Easter candy from this really cool guy I know. :) And I missed hanging out with my peeps. Yeah, yeah, the kids are fun and the fam is entertaining, but I do enjoy my life here at Seminary.

I wanted my 400th post to be happy. I think it has been sufficiently so.

Last, but not least for this post, my professor for whom I wrote all those options emailed me with positive comments about my assignment. It was nice to hear. From what I hear, he said positive things to many, many people. It's nice to know.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Fading to Grey

Fading to Gray

An empty chair
Untouched books
A yellow “J” as a Father’s Day gift
Bright orange hunting vest...
Cockleburrs and all
Well used fishing poles and tackles
Old Spice after shave
Unused pills
Black Mason’s shoes
Rolled up pant cuffs
A blue Gerdes stump removal hat
And a worn red flannel shirt
Folded up glasses
Bypass surgery scar
False teeth
Curly gray hair
It’s odd what can and can’t be remembered
Memories are so important
Some are pushed back to the recesses of the mind
As they fade to gray
But never completely disappear.

Monday, March 17, 2008

On Duty

Tonight, I volunteered to watch Howard and Sunscreen so Sis and BiL could go on a date. Married people don't go on dates enough. Especially when they have children. And when you have kids, it gets even harder to make special time for each other. When you're dating, you can just chill at home and make time for each other. I actually like "staying in" on dates. It's cheap, it's fun, and you don't have to deal with all kinds of people bein' all up in yer kool-aid.

So, I'm watching the kids. And they're sleeping. So, I'm just chillin' like a villain in Illin-ois.

In other news, we're having corned beef and cabbage tomorrow night. I'm incredibly excited. I stopped in and had a visit with my ex-boss yesterday, and they were having CB&C for a special. Restaurant has THE best CB&C around, and I was slightly bummed I didn't have any. Ah well. Hangin out with YS was better.

And so, today, I stayed in. And slept in. And I need to start catching up while I'm on break. Good luck to you all as you play catch-up and all that good jazz... Peace out.

P.S. Due to "popular" demand, I will be posting "Fading to Grey" (hopefully, if I can find it) next week when I get back to my computer.

Friday, March 14, 2008

I still don't know..

if I should be blabbing all about the inner machinations of my mind or not, but whatever.

I mark time by significant events in my life. Remember back at the end of November/beginning of December, I wrote about how I had been gone from Restaurant for a whole year? Well, I'm remembering another year anniversary today.

On March 14, 2007, the person my mom was disappeared forever. That was the day she had her radical cystectomy (where doctors do a complete hysterectomy and bladder removal) that radically changed her life. I blogged about that here.

It is my hypothesis that the stress to her body along with the anesthesia caused her further mental decline. It's not the doctors' faults. It just is the nature of the beast. After the surgery, we had so been hoping that she would come out of the fog, but it hasn't happened, and by this point, I highly doubt that it will. She hasn't seen her house in more than 7 months because she's been living in a nursing home for that long.

That's one of the parts that really get me. My mom worked for her WHOLE life, from the time she was a kid and did farm chores, to working at the post office when I was a little kid, to being the secretary for a guy who eventually laid her off because the price of steel skyrocketed. And then, she worked at a factory because she didn't feel like she should retire yet. So, the house that she WORKED to pay for is now sitting all devoid of life and stuff. It's clean (for the most part) and is just sitting there all "unlived in." It's weird to go there and see the place like that. But, that's the way it is.

On the positive side, she lives in a REALLY nice home. She doesn't like it, but it's the best place she could be in right now. It doesn't smell, the workers are actually nice, and it has a very "homey" feel, except for the fact that they all have roommates. Plus, it's a "religious" facility, (although it's non-Lutheran, but that's okay) and so they offer services and chapel and what not. Also, Pastor goes to see her sometimes, despite the fact that it's farther away than the rest of the homes he goes to. I don't know if she attends religious services or not because when we were there around Christmas, she wasn't interested in going to the Christmas Eve service. This surprised me because they were doing a lot of singing, and my mom LOVED to sing. People loved to hear her sing. And it's kind of sad that she doesn't do that anymore. But, I have a plan to maybe get her to sing sometime this week when I go visit.

It's at times when I remember what has happened that I am even more grateful that Jesus Christ has promised to be with me, even until the end of the age. I'm not much one for what I've coined, "Sunshine and flowers theology," because sometimes, the stuff that happens in life sucks. If I were to say that it didn't, I would be negating much of what life is all about. Life involves change and loss and gain and joy. Life engages our emotions, our thoughts, and our spirits. And if I were to say that everything is always peachy keen, I would be lying to myself, those around me, and I believe, even to God. God can handle my emotions (even though I'm not a very emotional person. Really, I'm not). And I think it cheapens faith and what God has done for us in Christ when we say that we "just need more faith" in order to endure this or that or whatever. So, I don't have sunshine and flowers theology. I think I have a realistic theology. Sometimes life sucks. But Jesus is with me in that suckiness. And therein lies my hope.

Monday, March 10, 2008

A slight rant.

I went out to my car on Sunday morning to drive to church with a friend, and I noticed that my windshield had a big honkin' crack in it. Not good news, man! I still need an EGR valve put in so that it will continue to deliver gas to the engine and allow the car to idle at stoplights and what not. Therefore, I do not need any more money to be going into that car. Sick. But, anyway, "A" and I drove to church and worshiped, and when we came back out at the end, I think the crack grew a little bit. I was slightly upset. Especially considering that within the last year, the solenoid (starter) went out, the fuel pump went bad, and now the EGR valve is malfunctioning too. So, that's A LOT of frickin' money that's been sapped up by Neno. Not good, Neno. Not good.

Anyway, I decided that I don't want to die on account of my windshield shattering someday (unlikely, but possible), so I decided to make some phone calls today and get estimates at how much it would cost to fix/replace the thing. I was hoping that it could be fixed. I opened up my phonebook to the Glass/Auto pages and called the first place.

Let me just say, "Oh Veh!"

Some guy answered the phone and I said, "I have a question. I have a crack in my windshield about a foot long. I wondered if I could have it fixed, or if it needs to be replaced." And the guy replied, "Oh, a foot long; it definitely needs to be replaced. If the problem spot is able to be covered by a silver dollar, then it can be replaced. But if you let it go to a foot long, the windshield needs to be replaced. If you'd have brought this to me when you first noticed damage, I could have fixed it." I was slightly taken aback by this guys tone of voice with me. It wasn't said in a "nice" way; it was said in a, "You damn woman. If you were less stupid, you could have saved money" way.

So, I said, "Well, one day there was nothing there, and the next there was a huge crack in it." And that's the truth, folks. I haven't even driven anywhere in a while. I don't remember being pinged with a rock or anything recently or anything. So, I was ticked off that this guy thought I had the IQ of the glass windows he replaces. So, he gave me a quote, and I said I would get some more estimates and decide. And as we were talking, I put a huge X through their ad in the phonebook with the word "NO!" by them.

Now, don't get me wrong; I'm a VERY easy-going person. But one of the ONLY things that really tick me off is when men think that I'm stupid because of my two X chromosomes. I know a fairly decent amount about cars, and I'm willing to learn more. But I don't enjoy when I go into car places or talk to car people and they automatically assume I'm stupid. The worth of people is not dependent on how much they know about a ton of metal with parts in it.

So, I called 3 or 4 other places, and the women who answered were MUCH nicer. I have a new theory that car places tend to have women answer the phones because we are less intimidated by women who talk to us about cars. They are more respectful and don't come across as condescending. They also were much more helpful and informative. So, that's my theory. Smart car places employ women to answer the phones and deal with customer service. Now, I don't mean to man bash. I know there are LOTS of caring men out there. It's just too bad that some people tarnish these guys. That's not fair, but it's true. So, guys out there, I know that most of you are cool-please forgive me for generalizing. But this is not an isolated incident. I could tell you plenty of stories about my adventures into car places, when I know EXACTLY what I'm coming for, and I'm still treated like a pile of estrogen who isn't worth her weight in salt. It's annoying at the least, and frustrating/angering on the other end.

But anyway, I found a place where the people will come here and replace my windshield, and I found out my insurance company will pay for a bunch of it because my deductible is only $100dollars. Yeehaw. It's still a little more than I would like to be spending right now, but oh well.

So, there is my rant. And if you ever need a new windshield, call around and get estimates... The place I went with was about 20 bucks cheaper than the next cheapest place, AND the lady who answered the phone was nice. Valuable stuff, folks. And now, I feel like an adult because I was responsible about this issue. Yeehaw. Peace out.

Sunday, March 09, 2008


After much consideration, I decided to submit Option 5, "Writing History" for "From Text To Sermon." I actually got two votes; one for option 5, and one for option 7. It was a tough call, because those were two of my three favorites. But, I decided that because I wanted to convey some of the depth of my personality, and because most of my professors only see, "Weird, silly Trish," I would submit something that was less than silly. Granted, me wigging out over making Beef Stroganoff isn't necessarily funny, it is a bit more lighthearted than the other one. Thank you to those who voted. Your voices were heard, and I appreciate your taking time to put your two cents in.

Oh, and in case you were wondering, Option 2 is my other favorite. I like it because I assume that it's confusing to the reader, which was my intent. Dementia is living in a world of confusion, and I always did like to convey a deeper message to the stuff I wrote. At the end, there was a little clarity, but still not much. "What's true? What's false? Is she hallucinating?" But, I decided to not go quite that far in self-revelation to Dr. Homiletics. :) Anyway, I hope you all are having a fantastic night. I did. Hasta.


Here at Blogger Idol, we are doing a final tally of the votes for which option to turn in. So far, there is one vote. So, that means that YOU should vote. Even if you've just stumbled on this page by accident. Because I'm curious. So sayeth Trish. :) I'm going to email the prof at 5:00 with my option, so time is running out.

Happy Daylight Savings Time.

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

I'm wondering

So, I am sitting here wondering about the level of "personal-ness" that I write about. I'm thinking maybe I am too blathery about my personal life on here. There are pros and cons to blogging about my personal life on the Internet, and so I just find myself weighing them.

One of the big cons is that sometimes I wonder if I'm just being a big "Debbie Downer" because some of my pals read this blog. And I'm not really a pessimistic person. Life just sucks sometimes (In the most "I have hope because of Christ" way possible).

Conversely, a big pro of blogging about my personal life is that it DOES help me get out what I think about. I have "tight-lipped" tendencies in real life, and rarely seek out people to talk about what is on my mind.

I reckon I need to work more on a balance. I'm huge on relationships and being "down to earth," and telling stories about life is a big way to do that with people. There are a bunch of blogs out there, and I feel like I know the writers of them. And I would like to think that some of those people think that they know me. I don't know though.

Anyway, that's what I'm thinking about today.

Tuesday, March 04, 2008


Today I was checking my email when I saw that Howard and Sunscreen's babysitter emailed me. This woman also babysits one of her grandsons, who is right around Howard's age. Howard is about to turn two years old. She's emailed me a few times before, and is a delightful woman. The subject of the email was, "Cute story." I'd like to share the story with my vast blogging audience.

"One day last week, Grandson was having a minor meltdown and Howard got my hand, while saying something I couldn't understand, and took me to Grandson. Howard got down on the floor and put both hands under Grandson and tried to pick him up - he was saying "Help" to me. Just think about that for a moment - It was a very touching moment."

I have to admit, I got teary eyed when I read that. My little guy is showing deep empathy for someone in ways he knows how. I'm so grateful that there are so many people who love him and demonstrate ways of showing love that he has picked up on it. That child is so special to me, and I'm so proud of him. I really hope that this gift of his is nurtured (because I believe it's a gift. He's been empathetic since he was a wee little guy; trying to give a bottle to his crying little brother, and hugging him when he's crying). We're learning about the emotional life of boys in one of my classes, and I think that this showing of empathy is one stepping stone on the way to good emotional health for him. I know I'm going to do my best to nurture that in him. And I trust that the gifts of God in him will blossom and flourish as he is led by the Holy Spirit which dwells richly in him. He may be a little guy, but he is a baptized member of the body of Christ. I honestly do believe that the Spirit dwells RICHLY in him. And in Sunscreen. Thanks be to God.

Monday, March 03, 2008

A request!

Hello all you fine folks who read this blog! I thought it might be fun to have a vote to see which "Option" you think is the best one so far. The assignment is due on Monday, but we're emailing it to the professor, so I think I'm going to send it in on Sunday night.

The assignment was basically just to write something; anything creative. So long as we turn it in, we will get credit for it. I have put a lot of time into the assignment, just by sheer numbers of things I've come up with.

So, I'm simply asking that you vote on the one you like the best, or if you hate them all, go ahead and tell me that, too. It's hard to see which one others like, because I wrote them and like them all, although to varying degrees.

So, if you don't vote, I'll just pick the one I like the best. And hey, even if you do vote, I still may do that. I'm just curious what my *adoring* audience thinks. Haha.

Alright. Peace out y'all.

Option 7-Untitled Again for now.

"What am I doing?" I wonder to myself as I stand there. I don't know what to do! This situation doesn't look right, but I have to pretend confidence in my abilities. People are counting on me! Granted, this is not a life or death situation, but still!

"You need any help there, Molita?" my friend Audit questions.

"Nope! I got it under control. It's cool."

But really, I'm shaking because I'm so nervous. "Jee Whiz! Get over it, Trish. This isn't that big a deal."

Someone knocks on the door. "Holy Crap! People are going to see my ineptitude! My glaring, obvious inability to do something that should not be that hard!"

I start thinking about alternate endings. What to do if this happens; what to do if that happens. I think I have a pretty decent back up plan, but I'm still hoping I won't need it.

"Please work out! Please work out! It's not looking right. What if it doesn't turn out!?" Welcome to my inner dialogue.

6:30 passes and I wonder, "Why the hell is this taking so long? And for the love of sanity, Trisha, why are you freaking out about this? Calm down!"

And I think to myself, "How many life or death situations have you been in, and you can't handle THIS? Gimme a break!"

More knocks on the door! "Why can't they be late for once! AAAHHHH!!!"

Everyone is assembled. And waiting. And asking if they can help.

"No, No. Sit down and relax. It's cool. Don't worry about it."

More time elapses and finally, it starts to look right. Holy Asp, Batman! It actually looks pretty much like it is supposed to look! Praise the Lord! (The situation warrants it, despite the fact we are in the middle of Lent).

"Hey y'all! Dinner's ready!"

Option 6-No Wonder

I don't like the phrase,
"No Wonder..."
I've heard it said,
"Let x Thing surprise you,
even if you think you know it
frontways and backways."
In my experience,
very little is black and white.
Shades of grey abound,
even in what I think I know.
We can always, always, ALWAYS wonder.
Confusion CAN BE a good thing.
Often it's not because it's disorienting and scary,
but sometimes that confusion...
leads us to a deeper quest for meaning
or answers.
And as we strive to make heads or tails of the things
we once thought we knew,
we can take solace in our confusion,
in the mental fog that comes
when you've though about something for too long,
such as the simple word, "the,"
knowing that fog in the little things makes it
less embarassing to have fog in the "big things."
Because it's all foggy.
Fog, fog, fog. We live
in a world of fog.
But it's okay because
even when the fog obscures vision,
we have faith that we are not alone.

Option 5-Writing History (Don't worry; this assignment is due next Monday, so the options are almost over)

I wrote a poem once called,
"Fading to Grey."
That poem almost won me a full ride
academic scholarship
at a beautiful
private college; alma mater of Ronald Reagan.
I didn't want the scholarship because
I didn't want to be a writer.
And that's not sour grapes
because I got second place.
But, I got my name printed in the newspaper.
My mom saved the clipping,
but she never asked to read the poem.
Sis (name deleted for the purpose of blogging) asked to hear it one day
while the two of us were in the car.
And after much prompting,
I acquiesced.
Sis cried.
I felt bad
and stopped writing.
Thanks for the assignment.

Sunday, March 02, 2008


Today was a glorious day! The temperature was in the 40's today! A whole bunch of snow melted, and people took the opportunity to be outside, even if only to walk the dogs, walk to the food pantry, or break up some of the ice in which we have been encased for eternity. Even though we're expected to get more snow tonight, this day has been a nice respite in the very harsh winter we've been having, and it gives me hope that Spring is not too far off.

This afternoon, my friend "J" invited me over to read at his place. I went, and I'm impressed because when I'm "studying" with other people, I am more apt to stay on task. I got some stuff read, and I'm thrilled. J is a cool guy and it is so nice to have his company. I'm actually INCREDIBLY blessed because I have numerous and varied friends here. Each are special in their own unique ways. It's exciting.

Oh, and this weekend Seminary had its formal dance that is put on by the "spouses" group. They get a jazz band to come play. Everyone dresses up in their old bridesmaid, cocktail, or prom dresses (or their Sunday best) and goes to drink wine, conversate, and dance. Because I was out on Saturday til about 10:00, I only went to about the last hour of it. But, I had a good time all around that night. It was fun to see everyone all dressed in their best, as well as hear a good jazz band playing. I've been having a lot of fun this semester, and I'm even doing much of my reading. Although I'm behind in Systematics. Yikes. I'll get there.

Anyway, that's some of what has been going on in the world of Trish. Things are going well, for the most part, and it's exciting. I hope you all are excited about your lives as well.