Showing posts from December, 2022

You Are Special!

The outside of our refrigerator is lined with photos, magnets, and works of art! Who would have thought that this kitchen appliance would become an album of memories and a celebration of connection? Every time our family gathers, adults and children scope out the latest contributions to the fridge! They look, they point, they question, they smile and sometimes the adults frown because they think that last year’s pic did not do them justice! 😊 "That's my brother, Karter!" Klaire exclaimed! It is funny how this tradition of our family is not exclusive to just us. As most of you have heard me say, Monique loves to spend her post retirement days substituting at the same local elementary school where she reported for duty during twenty-two years of active teaching. And on nearly every occasion, she will exit the front door at day’s end with one or more special pictures tucked into her bag that a student has drawn just for her to bring home to display on our refrigerator. How

Re-Entry and Splashdown!

It has been an exciting month for space enthusiasts! (Moi included!). The Artemis 1 unmanned moon mission concluded on Sunday, December 11 with re-entry of the Orion space capsule and its splashdown and recovery after more than three-weeks. The mission, to and from, including a wide-swooping loop around the moon after 1.4 million miles, was epic. The images taken by the spacecraft cameras have been breathtaking and vivid! Borrowing an exclamation from the Star Trek television series, this mission into deep space (like the fictional Starship Enterprise) promises to take us in the future to distances beyond the moon “where no man has gone before!” "When I consider Your heavens...the moon and the stars... What is man that You are mindful  of him... that You visit him?" (Ps. 8:3-4). (Photo Credit: NASA) The 25,000-mph re-entry into earth’s atmosphere exposed Orion’s newly advanced heatshield to temperatures of more than 5000 degrees Fahrenheit. This shield had never been tested

The Songs of the Season

I have been the recipient of a very special Christmas ornament for several years now. As December comes around each year, I watch and wait for it to arrive. I have two dear Texas friends who make this gifting possible - Wanda and Deborah Crossland. Back in the days of my seminary education, Wanda served on the search committee that called me to FBC Granbury as an associate pastor. Her daughter, Debbie, became one of Monique’s closest friends. Now, forty-five years later, Wanda and Debbie continue to be two cherished friends and encouragers! "Welcome to Songfest!" The ornament arrived the other day and took its place on my little Christmas tree that sits prominently in the family room on top of a media shelf. These uniquely crafted ornaments (on sale at the Capitol Gift Shop) promote the Texas Preservation Board that “ensures the preservation and use of the State Capitol Old General Land Office Building in Austin.”  Each year these collectibles have a special theme. The 2022 T

A Victim of Shrinkflation!

Monique picked up a brand name package of Swiss cheese recently. I immediately reacted, “Hey! That’s just like we bought when I was a kid!” It was labeled as a full slice, and I remembered how I would eat one of those every day for my after-school snack. In recent years, we have become accustomed to non-brand products that package only half slices. I had naively reasoned that the “economy slice” was following a more health-conscious approach. It is true that I don’t need the additional calories anyway!😉  Big Slice? What about the holes?! However, I discovered that the enclosed slices were not what a remembered from my childhood. These were a lot closer to half slices and contained more than the average number of holes in them! I counted seven or more “cheese vacancies” (holes!) in most slices. I asked, “What is this?” and a thought came to me that this might be an example of Shrinkflation! This new word has been used to describe how both packing and product have been downsized. The pr