Blog Maintenance

So, apparently, WordPress hasn’t been sending me notification emails for comments. I don’t know why.

Thank-you to all of you who’ve commented recently! I’m working on getting my notifications fixed so that I’ll actually find out that you commented the next time you comment. ; ) In the meantime, I will try to answer comments as soon as possible.

Keep readin’! : )

UPDATED: Contribute to Oklahoma Disaster Relief

Here are ways you can help the disaster relief efforts in Oklahoma:

(I will update this as I find more info.) Oklahomadisasterrelief

Tornado Relief drop-off locations around Metro OKC (via KFOR)

Donate blood to the American Red Cross
or text REDCROSS to 90999

Operation BBQ Relief

Regional Food Bank of Oklahoma
or text FOOD to 32333

BCGO Disaster Relief Fund

Text STORM to 80888 for The Salvation Army USA

Convoy of Hope
or text CONVOY to 50555

Tinker Air Force Base Emergency Family Assistance Center — call (405) 739-2747 to adopt a Tinker AFB family directly affected by the tornado

Register to find your lost family members

Helping children deal with traumatic events

“Brighten the corner where you are, and you will light the world.” –Dean Koontz
If you can’t help out through tangible donations, look for a way you can show compassion within your circle of influence today. And tomorrow. And every day after that. You don’t know what greater good might come tomorrow from your tiniest act of kindness today.

Pray.

Updated

Green Bambino, the cloth diapering store, is taking donations of disposable baby wipes, disposable diapers and baby formula.

Dignity Memorial® network of funeral, cremation and cemetery providers is making its Compassion Helpline® available at no charge to the families and friends of the victims, as well as other community members affected by this event. The toll-free number designated for use by members of the Oklahoma City-area communities and their families is 1-800-854-8080. Free grief materials are also available.

Old Try will donate $6 to the relief effort from any Oklahoma T-shirt sales.

The Okay See will donate to the relief effort 100% of these T-shirt sales.

Memorial Road Church of Christ has a list of accepted donations as well as ways you can get directly involved with the disaster relief. Call (405) 478-0166 if you know families or individuals who need help at their property.

Oakcrest Church of Christ, 1111 SW 89th Street, Oklahoma City. (405) 631-5534. The church has set up a shelter for storm victims and is receiving relief supplies.

Tornado and Truth: In the Aftermath of May 20, 2013

Moore, Oklahoma -- May 20, 2013 -- photo by Marshall Brozek via KFOR

Moore, Oklahoma — May 20, 2013 — photo by Marshall Brozek via KFOR

I sat down to write thinking that I was numb.

But considering all the thoughts that come to mind, I don’t think “numb” applies.

My house is a wreck because we hurriedly packed up emergency supplies and essentials, in case we had to flee to a neighboring church basement or my parents’ storm shelter.
But I have a house.

My dishes are dirty because nobody had time to do them today.
But I have dishes.

My clean laundry is scattered across the dining room and living room because it was in the way and nobody bothered to pile it in one place.
But I have clothes.

My bathroom rug is soaked because the cat found the vase of Mother’s Day flowers we were hiding in there.
But I have a pet.

My conscience is bothered because I had chocolate cake and ice cream for dessert tonight, even though I’d told myself I would resist.
But I have enough food to eat.

My baby is whining and crying instead of sleeping because she spent the evening overstimulated and got to bed two hours late.
But I have a living, breathing baby.

My husband isn’t home to help me take care of the baby because he’s out buying items for us to donate to the relief effort.
But I have a living, breathing, generous husband.

My mind is full and my heart is heavy and I don’t know how I’m going to sleep tonight.
But my mind is whole and my heart is beloved of the Creator of the universe, who gifts me with rest and peace.

Considering these truths, I cannot feel numb. I cannot but feel overwhelming gratitude coupled with compassion for those who suffered loss today.

Compassion: “feeling with” another, especially in that person’s pain.

I won’t turn away from their pain by letting myself become numb.

I worm in the ocean with sharp teeth.

Me: Google Analytics tells me that someone found my blog by Googling the phrase “I worm in the ocean with sharp teeth.”

Ed: …I what?

Me: I worm.

Ed: I worm?

Me: I worm.

Ed: …

Me: In the ocean. With sharp teeth.

Ed: Why?

Me: I dunno.

Ed: That’s some typo.

Me: A typo of what?

Ed: I dunno.

Me: What makes you think it’s a typo?

Ed: Why would someone Google that on purpose?

Me: People are weird.

Drawing this made sense in my head.

Drawing this made sense in my head.

One Does Not Simply Explain a Meme

Me: Did you see my meme?

Ed: Which one?

Me: The one about the groundhog.

Ed: From “Groundhog Day?”

Me: Yeah, that one.

Ed: I saw it.

Me: Did you get it? You’re not laughing.

Ed: I guess so.

Me: You know what it refers to, right?

Ed: I guess not.

Me: It’s Boromir’s line from the Lord of the Rings movie. The first one.

Ed: Umm.

Me (in English accent): “One does not simply walk into Mordor.”

Ed: …

Me: It’s a meme. You start with “one does not simply” and add on.

Ed: …

Me: So I might say, “One does not simply sleep through the baby crying.”

Ed: Uh-huh.

Me: It’s funny. I promise.

Ed: Okay. Good talk.

Don't drive angry.

Don’t drive angry.

UNDER CONSTRUCTION (Or: Learning Headway)

Hile, inklings! Just FYI, my blog is under construction until further notice. I’ve just switched over to Headway themes, and it’s gonna take me a while to get things arranged to suit me. < sarcasm > I LOVE changing user interface. < / sarcasm >

At least I’ve been able to get my background and header to look mostly the way I’d like them to. Now, if only I can find all my widgets. Pesky, elusive little things, those.

Once I’m done tinkering, I’ll make an announcement and you can all come ooh and aah over the whole kaboodle. In the meantime, as you see changes here and there, please bear with me — and feel free to give me feedback!

Thanks, y’all. As always, happy reading!

Addendum:

It’s now 24 hours since I wrote the above, and I can safely say that Headway rocks. I’ve been tinkering and tweaking, and I’m doing stuff with the blog that I once-upon-a-time had to ask my programmer friends to do for me. As far as I’m concerned, Headway has already paid for itself: I’m able to be more creative with and personalize the look of my blog, and I’m saving my friends the headache of getting panicky emails from me every five minutes. Everybody wins. BANGERANG.

Norah Jones, Election Day, and Quiche

Hile, inklings!

If you didn’t already know, today is Election Day in the United States of America: the day on which we, the People, decide on what the next four years of our country are going to look like. Or, at least, we express in an official manner how we imagine the next four years are going to look like. As we all now, imagination and reality don’t always have a whit to do with one another. Time will tell.

Hard Truth

But, in connection with the events of this momentous day, the following thought keeps running through my head:

“Toute nation a le gouvernement qu’elle mérite.”

Every nation gets the government it deserves.

~Joseph de Maistre
Letter 76, Lettres et Opuscules

If you disagree, feel free to debate Joseph and me on the topic, but I don’t think you’ll get very far. Just FYI. ; )

Ad Infinitum, Ad Nauseam

Anyway, onward! If you know me IRL, you already know that I long ago became everlastingly sick of this year’s presidential race, and for three reasons:

1. It’s stupid to spend so much money on a mud-slinging, high-school-esque popularity contest when the nation is already in gabillion-dollar debt. I mean, it’s not just poor politics or poor choices or selfishness or foolishness. IT’S STUPIDITY. Notably, this stupidity didn’t begin with the current party in power. This brand of stupidity has been going on for a lot longer than that, probably longer than I’ve been alive. So there’s that.

2. Mud-slinging, high-school-esque CHILDISHNESS. These are the people I’m supposed to trust with the running of my country? Please.

3. I don’t care for the candidates of the Republican and Democratic parties. They each have their good points and their bad points, but the plain fact is that I simply don’t like them. Yes, you could make the argument that I don’t have to like someone in order to trust them to make good choices. I agree with you there. But liking one of them would certainly make my vote easier to cast.

Breakfast Food and Norah Jones

One thought I keep coming back to is that we Americans have it pretty cushy. Or is it quooshy? I think it’s quooshy, because I just made that up and I like it. It can even be quiche-y, if you like (and I happen to). Anyway, we’ve got it easy when it comes to voting. For one thing, we get to vote. This, if you recall the quote from above, is because we have chosen the legal establishment of that right to vote. Yay us. We’ve picked a pretty easy system to live under, and so far, we’ve done things to keep that system in place. Whether or not we will or should continue to do those things is a point of philosophy for debate at another time.

Furthermore, we have chosen this system, and so we get to stand in lines today and cast our votes. While we’re standing in line, we might have to listen to the loudly expressed opinions of people who disagree with us on one thing or another…but the good news is that we won’t have soldiers trying to arrest us or terrorists trying to blow us up or government-hired mercenaries trying to shoot us. We get to have our quiche and eat it, too: voting relatively unmolested as compared to some other attempted democracies in the world. In our case, the grand democratic experiment is a success thus far. So there’s that, too.

In closing, I leave you with the words of singer/songwriter Norah Jones, who brings the kind of honesty and just enough sarcasm to the table to have captured the essence of my feeling on all of this:

My Dear Country
by Norah Jones

‘Twas Halloween and the ghosts were out,
And everywhere they’d go, they shout,
And though I covered my eyes I knew
They’d go away.

But fear’s the only thing I saw,
And three days later ’twas clear to all
That nothing is as scary as election day.

But the day after is darker,
And darker and darker it goes,
Who knows, maybe the plans will change,
Who knows, maybe he’s not deranged.

The news men know what they know, but they
Know even less than what they say,
And I don’t know who I can trust,
For they come what may.

‘Cause we believed in our candidate,
But even more it’s the one we hate.
I needed someone I could shake
On election day.

But the day after is darker,
And deeper and deeper we go.
Who knows, maybe it’s all a dream,
Who knows if I’ll wake up and scream.

I love the things that you’ve given me,
I cherish you my dear country,
But sometimes I don’t understand
The way we play.

I love the things that you’ve given me,
And most of all that I am free
To have a song that I can sing
On election day.