of laughs and lake water.

Some recent memories to take with me as I travel far away…

Good talks and good drinks for Kenny’s 30th birthday.  And freaking Talia out with ghost stories.

Easing into the calm water and floating on my back under a black-clouded sky, in the lake at the City Church women’s retreat.  And later, giving everybody goth lite makeovers.  And falling asleep next to Valerie while watching Clueless.

Bursting with pride over Jenny’s reading of her new book, to thunderous applause.  And later, sitting with some of my favorite people in the world, drinking in delicious cocktails and each others’ smiles.

Dancing.  Sooo much dancing.

Photo by Phil Bowne.

Not pictured: watching the kids from church screamin’ and yellin’ and carryin’ on happily, thanks to a Slip n’ Slide at the thank-you party for children’s worship leaders.

I’m a blessed girl.  Goodnight.

this is your life.

Happy GPOYW.

A while back Flickr introduced a new feature that allows you to tag users in photos, and I have been having a blast with it.  From a Flickr profile, you can click on “Photos of so-and-so” to see all the pictures that have actually been taken of them, not just by them.  It also makes things really easy to find when you go “Hey whatever happened to that one picture that so-and-so took of me?”  And I love seeing a collection of all the photos I’ve taken of a given person.  For some, it’s been years and I’ve taken dozens, and it’s almost like looking at a photo album exclusively of us.

When I look back through photos of me, I see painful times, joyful times, and just…time.  I feel like I’m on This Is Your Life.

I say!  It’s been a good one.  And it’s only just beginning.

of affirmations and fresh air.

I like the idea of affirmations rather than resolutions. It seems like we’re so obsessed with whatever’s new and exciting and looks like it’s going to TOTALLY FIX US and blah blah blah, but we never take stock of what’s great in our lives and what really works, and what we should keep doing.  My friend Victoria posted a list of affirmations for 2010, so here’s my own version of affirmations in pictures and quotes…many taken from this blog during the past year.

Lord, make me an instrument of Your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
Where there is injury, pardon;
Where there is doubt, faith;
Where there is despair, hope;
Where there is darkness, light;
And where there is sadness, joy.
O, Divine Master,
Grant that I may not so much seek
To be consoled as to console;
To be understood as to understand;
To be loved as to love;
For it is in giving that we receive;
It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life.
Amen.

— Prayer of St. Francis

It is neither wealth nor splendor, but tranquility and occupation, which give happiness.
— Thomas Jefferson

Resentment is like taking poison and waiting for the other person to die.
— David Sheff, Beautiful Boy

Always take hold of things by the smooth handle.
— Thomas Jefferson

Organizing is what you do before you do something, so that when you do it, it is not all mixed up.
— A.A. Milne

A man is rich in proportion to the number of things which he can afford to let alone.
— Henry David Thoreau

Those who labour in the earth are the chosen people of God, if ever he had a chosen people.
— Thomas Jefferson

I have appointed you Queen.
There are those more slender than you, more slender.
There are those purer than you, purer.
There are those fairer than you, fairer.

But you are Queen.

— from “The Queen” by Pablo Neruda

Love is like a friendship caught on fire: In the beginning a flame, very pretty, often hot and fierce, but still only light and flickering. As love grows older, our hearts mature and our love becomes as coals, deep- burning and unquenchable.
— Bruce Lee

g r a t e f u l .

I already went on and on about this thankfulness business earlier this week.  But perhaps a few items can be added?

I’m also thankful for

  • the simple fact that I’m blessed beyond belief and have it better than most of the world’s population — no matter what kind of a day I’ve had
  • baby cousins
  • gifts left in the mailbox
  • a husband who can go out and be charming and have a great time and meet lots of strangers and not be too nervous or shy or needing me to babysit him the whole time, and who can also stay in and watch movies quite contentedly in our little space heater paradise of a living room
  • my mom’s serious cooking skills
  • the privilege of forgiveness
  • my brother getting stationed in Hawaii
  • a church family that I look forward to seeing every week
  • a great job
  • other people finally catching on to this whole vampire thing
  • hearing new stories, or old ones told differently, every holiday