Friday, July 31, 2009

In a Pickle

We love to garden but really aren't very good at it. We either kill or thieves take most of what we try to grow. Occasionally we have problems with neglect too. The first year we had a salsa garden and every week Bill would make these amazing batches of homemade salsa. That was several years ago and we haven't been able to grow decent tomatoes since.

This year Austin decided to grow cucumbers and we have had a great crop. We've had over 40 so far after picking twice. We made 12 quarts of spicy pickles and have given raw cucumbers to neighbors and friends. The pickles have gotten mixed reviews. Bill and I like them but they are very spicy. I gave a quart jar to Melanie's family and her husband called them, "strangely addictive." High praise from Mark I suppose. Her son liked them too. My kids sort of like them.

I've been having cucumber and tomato salads that have been fabulous. The tomatoes are unbelievable again so yeah for us!

The spinach died before we got any (rabbits!). We have a huge mass of fresh basil and the chili peppers are starting to sprout. Our pumpkins are taking over one corner of the yard.

Dylan has been diligently watering every day and gives us the report of male/female flowers. He's so excited to see some fruit grow. Last year we tried watermelons and when he got one about the size of a baseball he was so curious that he kept touching it until it died. Hopefully the pumpkins won't meet with the same fate. Gardening is a sort of passion with him. He's been saying since he was four that he wants to be a florist. His great-uncle Henry had a nursery for years so maybe it's in the blood!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Sunrise, sunset.

Here are two of my favorite pictures of my nephew Robby and Taylor. They are only 10 months apart. Robby is the son of my SIL Wendy, which is confusing since my name is Wendy too. So they both have an Aunt Wendy in their life. They are the best of buds and have been since they were yea high to a junebug! They live faraway so we only get to see them about once or twice a year. Robby told her when he gets older he's going to move near us and be her next door neighbor. What will they do with their pesky younger siblings though????

Friday, July 17, 2009

Holy Roller

Here's a book I've just finished reading called Holy Roller by Julie Lyons. It was very interesting. It's about a woman who is white who starts attending a black pentacostal church and what she learns along the way. Although I disagree with some of her theological views I can relate to her on many levels. I remember feeling some of the same things she felt being an outsider in the black community when I was teaching in Chicago. I really liked what she said about the proof of salvation being in the evidence of a changed life. She really hits home the point that many evangelical churches don't reach the heart of a hurting person. I have found this to be the case sometimes. On the other hand I don't think that hyper emotionalism is the answer either.

Regardless of your views, it's a facinating book and one that I'm recommending. I have a copy to give away. Leave a comment on my blog and then I will pick from those who do. If you have trouble leaving comments then email me and I will copy and paste them!

Happy reading!

Julie Lyons was working as a crime reporter when she followed a hunch into the South Dallas ghetto. She wasn’t hunting drug dealers, but drug addicts who had been supernaturally healed of their addictions. Was there a church in the most violent part of the city that prayed for addicts and got results?At The Body of Christ Assembly, a rundown church on an out-of-the-way street, Lyons found the story she was looking for. The minister welcomed criminals, prostitutes, and street people–anyone who needed God. He prayed for the sick, the addicted, and the demon-possessed, and people were supernaturally healed. Lyons ’s story landed on the front page of the Dallas Times Herald. But she got much more than just a great story, she found an unlikely spiritual home. Though the parishioners at The Body of Christ Assembly are black and Pentecostal, and Lyons is white and from a traditional church background, she embraced their spirituality–that of “the Holy Ghost and fire.” It’s all here in Holy Roller–the stories of people desperate for God’s help. And the actions of a God who doesn’t forget the people who need His power.