Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Janie's Stocking 2.0 Final Whizbang Wowie

Don't you hate it when your kids are in the position to be able to say, "I told you so?" Well, that's me right now. Back in November when we were deciding on what item from the Food For The Hungry "Gift" Catalog we wanted to select for Janie's Christmas Stocking, I wondered about the idea of being so ambitious as to choose the largest gift in there. We'd seen God do amazing things last year, when over $1700 came in when we had hoped to "reach" $500. But still, this year I expressed a little reservation. It went kind of like this:

Me: "I have some reservations this year."

Carly (scoffing a bit): "Of course we'll reach $2500, Dad. You'll see. Have a little faith."

Me: *wince*

And with that, we decided to

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Authoritative, Indespensable Year-End Roundup of EarnestlyICQ

The Authoritative, Indespensable Year-End Roundup of EarnestlyICQ

Heh, I enjoyed that post title. Any guesses where I ripped that off from?

Anyway, I've never done a year-end roundup of the most popular posts of this (obscure) blog...and I'm not about to start now. However, I thought it might be fun(ny?) to put up some of the posts that I most enjoyed typing (or were most meaningful for me at the time) from the ENTIRE  HISTORY (since July 2009 haha) of this blog....for your year-end reading enjoyment. So both of you reading this blog can

Book Roundup 2011

It's year-end-roundup time, and the blogosphere feels different for a week or so. We give our "funniest posts roundup," our "most popular posts," our thoughts on the turn of the year and......*pensive pause*   ha! you thought I was going to give you my list of books I read this year, didn't you! Nope, I'm turning the tell me what books you read this year instead! Thanks to The Blainemonster for the idea. I'm always nervous about asking people to comment though...what if they don't? I'll feel silly gosh darn it. At least you'll comment, Blaine....won't you?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Creepiest Piggy Bank Ever 2.0

Long-time subscribers to this blog (bwa-haha that's funny) may recall that last year when we did the first-ever Janie's Christmas Stocking fund raiser, my friends Steve and Ruth Hall contributed the contents of their spare-change piggy bank. Well, they've dropped off the bank again this year too, God bless them. It's a wonderful way to be a part of the fun, but they gave it with a few caveats:

1) I have to return the bank. No Problem...the thing gives me nightmares. This year, they dressed it up with some false eyelashes and a big red bow on the top of it's head. Yeah, that makes it much less chilling. Remember that awful shower scene in Psycho when the shadow falls on the shower curtain and the lady knows she's about to get it? "Reeee! Reee! Reee!" "Screeeeaamm!!" I wake up in a cold sweat having seen this pig, pretty eyelashes and all, appearing in the mirror when I closed the medicine cabinet. Or I get in the car and reach up to adjust the rear view mirror and there it is....slightly grinning. Or pushing me out of an airplane. Go ahead, click the picture. I dare you.

2) We have to remove the change ourselves from the

Monday, December 19, 2011

Janie's Stocking Is Going Great

Janie's Stocking is cranking right along! Thank you so much for giving. People you will probably never meet, people like this, will have a tangible evidence of your loving them because you gave to the project! Thank you! Don't stop spreading the word and thanks again!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Anti-Facebook Snobbery

Wait, let me explain. I'm sorry. I don't really mean to hate on you, Facebook, it just seems to happen. I just blurt stuff out without thinking. I'm really sorry. I hope you can forgive me. It's just, well, I've seen how you have changed things so much, and I feel like not all of it is for the better, honestly. It just seems to me that the last thing our already narcissistic culture needed was more stuff about me, me,, us, us. Here's my list of reasons why I've hesitated to get a Facebook account for so long:

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Beautiful Things

Beautiful Things by Gungor

Another word for what they are artfully saying is the word redemption.
"He redeemed us in order that the blessing given to Abraham might come to the Gentiles through Christ Jesus, so that by faith we might receive the promise of the Spirit." Galatians 3:14

And that's the nature of the Christmas story, isn't it?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Koyaanisqatsi And Me

When I was a senior in high school, I saw a film called, Koyaanisqatsi. That's a Hopi word which means, "life out of balance."


I lay awake the other night, thinking, like I sometimes do. I know, melancholies are weird like that.

I was in Boston, staying at a swanky hotel. If you know me at all, I'm pretty sure you would know that "swanky" is not really my style. I was there because the company I work for got hired to photograph the Christmas party of a very large, swanky  company. I promise I will not us the word swanky anymore in this post. These people, virtually all 800 of them, were young, beautiful professionals. The party was at the absolutely gorgeous Boston Public Library. I brought Carly along so we could do some of the Boston-at-Christmas thing the next day.

The company put us up in a, um, fancy hotel, called The Colonnade, and it was very euro-sleek and stylish. It had a view to the North - right toward the 50-story Prudential Center. Fabulous.

The next day, Carly & I took a stroll through the mall in the Pru, walking past the Anne Taylor store with the eight-foot tall posters of Demi Moore wearing (presumably) Anne Taylor's clothes in the store windows. We moved along to Copley Square and ended up, inevitably, on Newbury Street, aka the Rodeo Drive of the East. Everyone (that's not hyperbole -it's really everyone) on Newbury Street was beautiful. Their stylish clothes, their up-to-the-knee boots, their carefully managed handsome/pretty faces, and especially their silky and properly product-ed hair, was beautiful. I'm not troubled by the beauty - that's not what I was

Thursday, December 8, 2011

My friend (and Carly's youth pastor) Rob Townshend recently had some articles published on a blog for youth workers. It's been fascinating to watch Calvary's students "own" their youth group and take hold of the paradigm that Rob describes. My Carly has been really changed and blessed by it.

Here is the first one, and here is the follow-up.

Good job, Rob, and thanks for being so willing to be led by God "out of the box!"

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Thanks For Sharing

I'd like to say a public Thank You! to those friends and family - you know who you are - who tweeted, blogged, emailed and shared on Facebook about the Janie's Stocking project. As you know, spreading the word about something of this nature is the only way for it to succeed - people can't give to something they don't know about! I'm especially grateful to Calvary Bible Church here in Rutland for sharing via their email list (as well as letting me talk about it on Sunday) and to my friend Jared for posting about it on his widely read blog. Thank you all! I'm excited to see where God takes this!

Friday, December 2, 2011

Janie's Christmas Stocking 2011

So it's time for the big reveal of a new twist on Janie's Christmas Stocking: Online giving! Yep, you don't need to mail a check or catch me in the hall with cash (unless you are Steve and Ruth Hall) or give me your firstborn or right arm or anything! Food For The Hungry has graciously set me up with a page for Janie's Christmas Stocking, and it's pretty cool.

If you don't yet know what this is about, click here, and for where it all came from, click here.

We are extending the deadline to December 31 this time.

Also, if you would still prefer to