It's been more sporadic blogging lately. I don't know why, precisely - I'm just not feeling as inspired to write and reflect at the present. That doesn't bother me so much, but I've not been reading blogs as much, either, and that makes me uncomfortable. So many people have great things to say, and I'm not giving them an audience they deserve. Anyway, I'm going to stop playing Scrabulous for a bit and tell you what's up here in Ames.
Speaking of Facebook, it's been kinda fun suggesting friends and having them suggested to me. I've connected with a few old friends and lots of new ones, and I've kept in touch with some folks from our previous calls as well. Scrabulous, though, is definitely the best thing about Facebook.
Ainsley continues to be a wonderful blessing to Kris and me. Having learned some basic children's signs, she can now ask for food, help with various things around the house, and lots of other stuff. I took her to the pediatrician on Monday, and all of a sudden she started signing "Baby." Then she pointed to the picture of a mother and baby on the cupboard above my head. Talk about a proud moment! Then she asked for milk and food to eat and we proceeded to enjoy a snack together in the examination room. I've remarked more than once to Kristin that she may not be talking yet, but she is communicating, and it's a lot of fun.
I've picked up my training for Grandma's Marathon, which is two short months from yesterday. *gulp* We've joined a gym in Ames and have been putting our membership to good use - in the 23 days of April I've gotten in 13 workouts, and that includes my trip to Nashville when I was so tired from the long travel days that I just slept in. In the past week alone I've lost two pounds - hopefully I'll keep losing weight and approach my goal weight of 190 lbs. for the marathon. If I'm going to make it under 4 hours I'll need to cut the weight. On Monday night I enjoyed my last bit of ice cream until my birthday, and I've eliminated the late night TV snacks as well. We'll see how it all goes, but I'm pretty happy thus far.
Is it me, or does it seem like God just flipped a switch and spring came ON? We went from cold and rainy and even snowy to green and warm in less than twenty-four hours, it seems, and I'm loving every minute of it. So is Ainsley, who now asks to go outside several times a day (when she's not already out there, that is). We were definitely feeling cabin fever the last few weeks of March, and apparently we weren't the only ones: either Ames is home to the highest per-capita percentage of runners in the world, or everyone's out feeling their oats this spring.
Watched a neat little program last night on NOVA: Tom & Ray Magliozzi, aka Click & Clack the Tappett brothers, hosted The Car of the Future. It wasn't as funny as I'd hoped it would be, but damn, as soon as Tesla comes out with an affordable plug-in I'll be first in line. That sports coupe they are building right now is HOT. Here's a video promo for the show that also shows the Tesla AND Ray's beloved '52 MG:
Good stuff there - brought to you by Dewey, Cheathem & Howe, naturally.
In book news, I've finished the Irish Century series by Morgan Llywelyn. 1999: A Novel of Ireland and the Search for Peace was the last and, unfortunately, very disappointing. After the Halloran family was so deeply involved in the republican cause for most of the century, watching them watch the rest of the century happen was very much underwhelming. You just never got the sense of the historic figures in 1999 like you did with Padraig Pearse, Michael Collins and even Eamon de Valera in the earlier volumes. That having been said, it's a worthy series with much to recommend it, even the final volume. Now I'm looking for good books on ancient Irish history, Brian Boru and the like, and not necessarily historical fiction, so if you've got suggestions, please send them my way!
Campus ministry continues to feel like a good fit for me, and I'm very thankful for the opportunity to work with and for these young people in our community. It's just incredible to watch them live and study and work and grow and become who they're becoming. Jan E at A Church for Starving Artists had a post about her church and their struggle to be a better community for each other - her frustration hits why I feel called here squarely on the head. I did NOT become a pastor to churn out confirmands and pray at every church supper - I'm here to help people ask the questions for themselves and learn what it means to be a disciple of Jesus every day for the rest of their lives, to never stop growing in faith, and in campus ministry I feel like I can really put that passion to good use. As I said a while back, it's good to feel useful again.
Well, that's the news from Ames - blessings to you all!