Thursday, October 9, 2008

food of the heavens.

So a friend of mine had me try these at her house a couple of months ago and I loved them but she said the only place she could find them was Whole Foods, so the thought to get them went out of my head.  Until Sunday, when the church I am going to now is so close to a Whole Foods, so I went in and bought 3 bags, the third of which I am finishing off now, granted these aren't super huge bags but still I'll admit I ate a bag for dinner Tuesday.  Yes that was just 5 days ago. Check out the info here.

long time no blog...

I have the day off from school today (and tomorrow...), yay for small town schools where the fair is such a big deal it merits 2 whole days off from school!  We never got a day off from school just because the fair was going on, really all the fair meant for most of Tyler was going to ride tons of rides, play games, eat a lot of cotton candy and sausage on a stick, and a funnel cake...the American way.  Ill have to ask my kids on Monday after the fair is over what they did over these two days.  

So anyway I'm blogging from the couch.  I honestly couldn't have asked for better timing with these days off though because I have laryngitis/some kind infection and I have no voice, or rather what I do have is horrid to listen to.  Tuesday was the first day it was bad and my kids made fun of me all day, but I think they felt a little sorry for me because they were offering to read and explain things where normally they are quite reluctant.  My kids are great though I really love them a lot.

I guess I haven't really updated since I moved here.  I'm living in Katy which is...interesting.   It is the epitome of suburbia.  I'm living with a friend of a friend from college and that is going well.  She owns a house in Katy, (she's already been teaching for 7 years) and so it's nice being able to pull into the garage every day and not climb 3 flights of stairs with loaded arms.  The house is in a newer subdivision and there are kids everywhere and tons of inflated pumpkins and ghosts and witches and whatnot adorning most of the yards.  The kids around here are nuts, or I should say their parents are for not teaching them not to play in the street.  Just last week these 4 kids had set up their soccer field in the street, as in they had to move their "goals" everytime a car came because they were taking up the whole street, and countless times every week when I'm coming home there are kids literally skateboarding, bike riding, ball playing in the middle of the road in a high traffic subdivision.  Yesterday I was going along and to my right up ahead was an empty lot (a rarity) and the grass/weeds are tall, right as i'm about to pass it a kids comes bounding out of the lot right in front of my car with his skateboard in hand and proceeds to spend the next 30 seconds mounting the thing and doing whatever else RIGHT IN FRONT OF MY CAR as if I wasn't even there.  I had to hit the brakes to begin with but then I eventually honked at the kid to get out of the way.  Then he looked at me like, oh hi, didn't see you there.  I have yet to really meet any people my age, I'm slightly convinced I'm the only person under 25 here. 

I'm going to a church in Sugarland right now with a friend of mine who lives in Houston.  This weekend will be my 3rd time to go but I think I'm going to stay there for awhile.  Finding a church has been so hard.  I looked around Katy for the first couple months and I found some great churches there it's just no one close to me in age on walk of life everyone is either 30 or older already married with kids.  And not that I don't value intergenerational relationships, I do, I'm pretty sure after being at LH for 4 years I value them more than anybody but there is just no one my age anywhere around here and it's hard not have that kind of community because I only have 2 good friends in the Houston area anyway, so I am looking forward to meeting new people and making some new friends.  It has definitely been a difficult 2 months getting adjusted to living here and starting school all with only a couple of people who I am really close to who don't even live in the same town.  But I have just been clinging to the truth that the Lord is good and he provides in perfect timing.

Work has been going really well, I seriously love my kids.   Somedays I want to knock them into next week...with my vicious rhetoric of course, but their moments of brilliance and sheer hilarity are priceless.  I love my co-workers too, they're always looking out for me and helping out and they're so supportive.  I really love my school.  Open house was this past Monday and oh man most of the parents just walked right by me as they turned into my room and then I would hear their kid say, "mom, mom that's my teacher out there.." followed by, "where?" and then they would look out and see me and go "Oh! I thought you were a student!"  But most of the parents seemed to be really supportive once I started talking with them. 

So Courtney tagged me to list 7 things about myself, so here goes...

1. I think secretly I could be a fashion designer or a designer for pier 1.  When I go shopping I spend just as much time trying to find some article of clothing or piece of furniture that I invented in my head as I do looking at what is already in the stores.

2. I drink entirely too much diet dr. pepper.  Like I think one day they are going to find out that my insides have been permanently altered because of it.  

3. I am adopted.  This is not a big deal or a sensitive subject to me at all but whenever people find out about it they are curious so feel free to ask.

4. I LOVE the Cosby Show.

5.  I took piano lessons from Vanilla Ice's mom.  I have his autograph.

6. I rode horses and showed competitively for 10 years and even went to the national championships.

7. I trim my own hair.  In between haircuts I shape up the layers myself.  I don't trim the longest layers because I need those as a guide and so it doesn't look like I cut my own hair, but I trim it every 3-4 weeks.  The last time I paid someone to cut my hair was the first of july.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Sunday, August 3, 2008

if you only had a few days left... college station, where would you go eat?  I've already had Koppe Bridge now I'm trying to decide where to go with some dear friends for a going away dinner, current and former College Stationites (?) vote now.

Sunday, July 27, 2008


So I have a job!  I go tomorrow to sign a contract with a high school just outside of Katy to teach U.S. History and Government (I don't think I will post on here exactly where I am teaching for several reasons so if you want to know please feel free to ask I'm happy to share!)  

I'm going to Houston today after church to hang out with Brittany and then tomorrow I'm going apartment shopping in Katy.  If you have any apartment tips, or questions you think I should ask when looking, please let me know I've never lived in one...also if you know of any great churches in the Houston area!

I plan to get totally moved in the weekend of the 8-9th of august, but Ill probably be making a few trips back and forth between now and then.

I'm headed to LH now for probably the next to last time...i'm okay.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

fondant, the devil's play-doh.

oh how innocent and pretty you look.

don't be deceived.

I've been wanting to try a fondant recipe for awhile so if I ever wanted to make a fun cake for a party or birthday or just because, I would be able to.  I wanted to just make a plain cake and make plain white fondant as a simple layer over it so that way I would know how to make it, not for any specific reason or for it to be pretty and colorful. So I looked up a recipe this afternoon and went to the store and came home and got to work.  

When looking at the recipe and procedures I knew it would take awhile but that was no problem, I had the rest of the day to play in the kitchen.  I found the recipe here.  What was alluring about this recipe was that this fondant was actually supposed to be remotely edible compared to most fondant that is while pretty quite tasteless, and making the icing this way was more economical that buying it pre-rolled.    

The reality:  this was by far the messiest project I think I have ever participated in in my life, including things I did as a child that I got in trouble for.  My kitchen at three different times looked as if a powdered sugar/corn starch bomb blew up in there.  At one point the island, surrounding floor, rug, everything I was wearing were all completely covered in white dust. The recipe and procedures had you spreading powdered sugar and corn starch and crisco over the counter and kneading the "dough" (read: and by dough I mean until you get the consistency just right, homemade glue).  There is absolutely no need to have an ever expanding mess all over everything by doing this on the counter or any other place that is not contained, it is much easier and lots cleaner to just knead the mixture in a large bowl.  I say this because it takes awhile to get the consistency just right and you are constantly adding water and powdered sugar and more powdered sugar and/or crisco to the counter itself to keep it from sticking (a huge problem) and by the time I had it sort of close to the ideal consistency the island in my kitchen was completely covered with powdered sugar and dough and mess.  You only need to bring it to the counter when you are ready to roll it out (hence monstrous messes #2 & #3), which is an activity I think is probably a punishment in purgatory, seriously, it's awful and pretty close to impossible to roll it our big enough without it tearing or sticking to the counter. 

Oh and my hands are a little sore from all the kneading.  And it took 4.5 hours.
I think this is one of those things you just have to go ahead and try so you can get it behind you and say I will never do that again.  A project such as cupcakes or making fondant decorations for a cake with the first layer of fondant on, sure.  I think they sell special non-stick mats made for rolling out fondant and I would try again with that but not with anything less I think.  Here's my cake with just a plain white layer over a layer cake:

Saturday, July 19, 2008

doing church differently.

Why We're Not Emergent (By Two Guys Who Should Be) by: Kevin DeYoung & Ted Kluck

This is a witty and smart work written by a pastor and a member of his congregation and they are out to set the rather crooked record straight about what so-called and not so so-called emergent authors, pastors, leaders, bloggers, and others which reject conventional labels are presenting as the rationale and basis for the emergent/emerging (DeYoung & Kluck use these words interchangeably - although some view them as markedly different) movement and how embracing social issues doesn't mean you need to forsake a life founded upon orthodox beliefs, propositional truths about Jesus, and the authority of Scripture. 

As a disclaimer to anyone who may stumble across this blog I feel I should report the same disclaimer DeYoung and Kluck put wholeheartedly in their book,
"We fully understand that emergent means a hundred different things to a hundred different people, so if what you read in these pages is not what you mean by emergent then so be it...We do not think of our emergent sparring partners as the "bad guys", no doubt many people reading this book have been helped by these [emergent leaders]...when we talk about the emergent church we are not simply referring to what is new, postmodern, culturally with-it, or generationally up and coming, the official Emergent organization, or the Emergent village; we are talking about a movement led and inspired by a cadre of authors and pastors who express many of the same concerns with the evangelical church, hit on many of the same themes, and often speak as the most influential voices in the emergent conversation...We don't want to get hung up on labels let alone poison anything that has been called emergent."

To begin DeYoung addresses the question he is asked most frequently, "So what is the emergent church anyway?" and he says defining the emergent church is like nailing Jell-O to the wall.  This is, he says because of several reasons, first because it is new and all new movements are usually amorphous and hard to define, but the blurry nature is also very intentional as emergents view themselves as just participants in a "conversation"; emergent authors and bloggers do not view themselves as authoritarians or theologians but as talkers.

DeYoung counters this position of being just "talkers" and the general lack of accountability within the movement with the fact that thousands of books have been sold, podcasts are downloaded everyday, speakers tour the country, and once this happens you cannot deny that you are indeed a leader and teacher whether you want to be or not and this is serious because as James says, "Not many of you should become teachers, my brothers, for you know that we who teach will be judged with greater strictness" (3:1) 

The things emergents are addressing generally involve the importance of relationships and inclusivity, addressing the social needs of people; their mantras include, "doing church differently" and "all we need is Jesus"; and the leaders include, Tony Jones, Doug Pagitt, Spencer Burke, Brian McLaren, Dan Kimball, Rob Bell, and Peter Rollins.  They rally around postmodernism which really means anything that is deconstructed, embraces uncertainty, lacking central ideas or hierarchy, anything that departs from tradition or the way that things have been done in the past, and so on.

In this book DeYoung and Kluck address several issues and interpretations where the evangelical church and the emergent movement seem to be at odds and why it is important to not just dismiss these differences as unimportant because they come back to the foundations upon which the church was built and in some circumstances the very fundamentals of Christianity, such as: the importance of the journey verses the destination, the knowability of God, uncertainty verses humility, homosexuality, the encouragement of doubt as a part of our faith, the acceptance of rebellion and the legitimacy of authority in the church, the Bible as inerrant, etc.

I would highly recommend this book even if you are not interested in the emergent movement solely as a work that will get you thinking about what you view as foundational and how important it is to hold fast to the truths of the word.  I was eager to read this book as I know someday I will be searching for a new church home and I wanted to use this as a resource to help me be as discerning as possible when examining the doctrines and fundamentals of a new church and not let things not found in scripture effect my decision about where I should be and I am really glad I read this book.