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Archive for August, 2008

Labor Day Friday Five, Singing Owl writes:

Here in the USA we are celebrating the last fling of the good ol’ summertime. It is Labor Day weekend, and families are camping, playing in the park, swimming, grilling hotdogs in the backyard, visiting amusement parks and zoos and historical sites and outdoor concerts and whatever else they can find to help them extend summer’s sun and play just a little bit longer.It is supposed to also be a celebration of the working man and woman, the backbone of the American economy, the “salt-of-the-earth neices and nephews of Uncle Sam. With apologies to those in other countries, this is a Friday Five about LABOR. All can play. Put down that hammer, that spoon, that rolling pin, that rake, that pen, that commentary, that lexicon, and let’s have some fun.

1. Tell us about the worst job you ever had. 
The worst job I ever had was probably the one I kept the least amount of time, in high school I had a telemarketing gig selling credit card insurance.  I hated it, and only lasted a week or so.  It was awful knowing that most people did not want to talk to you  and if you were lucky they would be polite about it.
2. Tell us about the best job you ever had.
That would have to be the one where I met Joel.  The summer before my senior year I worked and carpooled with Joel Karr at Santa’s Workshop/The North Pole Amusement Park at the base of Pike’s Peak.  We had crappy pay but lots of fun.  Most of us were high school and college students.  There were a few adults over 25 but not many.  They even had monthly events for the workers.  It was on the bus ride to and from Elitches (an amusement park in Denver) that our romance officially began.  It was a long and crazy path to our wedding in 1997 but it was a lot of fun!
3. Tell us what you would do if you could do absolutely anything (employment related) with no financial or other restrictions.
In many ways, it’s exactly what I’m doing now.  My “dream job” would be ministering to a very socially justice oriented church where I and the congregation would work with victims/survivors of domestic violence, phsyical, psychological, and sexual abuse.  We’d also have programs to prevent violence among children, men, and women.  There would also be a sacred arts program tied in helping people to find their voice among a myriad of different mediums–painting, drawing, writing, dancing, etc.  And if I had any time and energy left I’d also teach a class or two on feminist or process theologies, or US American Methodist History.  No wonder I have a difficult time getting any one thing done well–there are simply too many wonderful things to get caught up in!
4. Did you get a break from labor this summer? If so, what was it and if not, what are you gonna do about it?  I had a very short break from labor when Joel and I visited the Lied Lodge in Nebraska City, NE.  Fabulous!  I highly reccomend it!
5. What will change regarding your work as summer morphs into fall? Are you anticipating or dreading?
I am looking forward to teaching a short-term Disciple Bible Study on the Psalms.
Bonus question: For the gals who are mothers, do you have an interesting story about labor and delivery (LOL)? If you are a guy pal, not a mom, or you choose not to answer the above, is there a song, a book, a play, that says “workplace” to you?
I have 3 stories of course!  I’ll try to keep them short:
  1. Merkin’s birth was most like a party, I had to be induced and all my friends dropped in and out of the labor room all day.  When Merkin was born I had my best friend, Valerie, my roomate Jen, and my mom all in the room.  It was GRRRL powered for sure!  After Merkin popped out Valerie ran around with excitement pointing at her shirt and shouting with joy “I have her blood on my shirt!  Look, I have Merkin’s blood on my shirt!  I’m never going to wash it!”  It was  a joyous occassion for sure!
  2. Valerie’s doctor ran and took a smoke break right as the labor was starting!  It was fine but I did want to throttle her!
  3. Ainsley’s birth was scary and I didn’t really have a clue.  I’m sort of amazed they didn’t do an emergency c-section but I guess there just wasn’t time.  At one time there was a nurse sitting on top of me (really!) helping to try to push her out.  She had an extremely long umbilical cord wrapped around her neck and they had to “work” on her for a while.  Thankfully I did not know at the time just how close we were to losing her.  It still shakes Joel up to think about it because he was fully aware and watching them work on her.  I’m glad I only knew afterwards.

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a few of my favorite things

I love photography.  Digital cameras are wonderful because now anyone can take a great picture and turn it into a work of art.  I especially love to take close-up images.  It’s funny how a super close perspective can make anything beautiful.  Perhaps that is merely a truth–everything is simply made of beauty but our human eyes too often fail to notice, we have become lazy and no longer see it.  However, when we stop and look closely it jumps out at us and makes us smile or giggle like little children once again.

pollen

pollen

Please excuse my ugly toes
Please excuse my ugly toes
beauty
beauty

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A few ramblings about me…

It’s funny, I love to pray, perhaps I should say: I want to love to pray.  I don’t do it nearly as often as I’d like. 

I can be somewhat of a perfectionist and then it stalls me from completing and sometimes even attempting to do something I love.  I used to write moderately bad poetry all the time, it was as if writing was breathing.  Then I went through a spell of painting in the same manic way. 

Now I miss painting and writing bad poetry, but the part I miss most of all is the passion that compelled me to do it.  I miss the drive, the need to create.  I’m not sure where it went.  Perhaps it just manifested itself in other ways.  I know it still exists because I still dream of those things, I still dream of writing and painting and dancing. 

Most of my days are now spent learning to minister to this beautiful flock I’ve been entrusted to watch over and lead.  I also spend a great deal of time parenting–often said parenting is less than stellular.  I miss the old me, but I also like who I am becoming at this very moment.  Perhaps it’s not that my passion has gone somewhere else, perhaps it has matured a bit and I haven’t quite learned how to recognize it. 

Each week I wrestle with scripture, trying to understand it from the outside in and the inside out.  Then I attempt to stay out of the way, while I attempt to understand the message I’m to stand up and give on Sunday morning.  It’s difficult stuff.  It’s hard to do, at least it’s difficult for me.  I want to be true and faithful to God, the churches, and myself.  I try to give God’s message rather than my own, but it’s hard to distinguish which is which–I find myself sneaking into sermons quite often.  So I pray and try to get quiet.  Sometimes I write down what I know is “mine” and then it frees me to write what I pray and hope is God’s message.

It’s sort of scary up there–behind the pulpit.  Once I wanted to tease one of the parishioners who had shown up to church after a long absence.  However, I realized that was an abuse of the pulpit.  The pulpit looms large with responsibility, I don’t take it lightly.

I’m amazed by time and how quickly it passes.  Yet, there are moments that never seem to end.

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Hello world!

Hello, you can call me RevCrystalK.  I thought it was time to move from annominity and into the light of day.  It feels good to be in the sunshine again!  I am currently serving at two delightful United Methodist Churches–Sharp’s Grove UMC and Mound City UMC.  This journey began in July 2008.

This learning curve I’m on is crazy and wonderful all at once.  Thankfully my 3 wild grrl-childs are loving life in the small town and enjoying their new school.  The only con in our new world of pros, is that my wonderful husband and hilarious dad to the grrrls is living apart from us most of the week.  However, this is a short-term problem and will hopefully be settled within the coming year.

That’s about it for now, as I need to get to the church and do some ministry.

Peace and blessings.

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