February 24, 2012

Great Ministry Donation, or Greatest?

Every now and then you stumble across something so amazing, that you have to stop and blog about it even though it's the day of a retreat and you have a lot to do.

I was looking for pencils for our retreat this weekend when I..

well, when I hit the jackpot.

A few weeks ago, a ministry donated a bunch of suitcases full of school supplies and other stuff that we will most certainly put to use. Not least of which: A suitcase full of hats. Trucker hats. Good trucker hats, real trucker hats, not poser trucker hats, hats made for real truckers, not to be sold in Hot Topic to teenagers who couldn't drive a stick shift if their life depended on it.

And they're all gold, as far as I'm concerned.

Classie Plant Co.
Myakka City, Florida.
Chilean Nitrate.

So good.

It's a great day.

February 18, 2012

Write Your Life

I'm trying to blog more. Really, I am. At least 3-4 times a month. And it's not that it's slipped my mind or anything, I genuinely want to, I really plan to. It hangs over my head like a cloud, a big unfinished cloud, like homework used to.

But I do my best to follow two guidelines: 1: Blog only if you have something to say (this does not apply to Facebook statuses) and 2: Don't blog about really personal stuff (I wish everyone would apply this to Facebook statuses). There's a limit to the depth of stuff you ought to dig out of your private life and share with the internet. And it doesn't necessarily need to be scary, depressing, dramatic, dynamite stuff to be too private to share. Some people can blog like that, process life that way. I guess I try not to.

So in recent months as I've been sorting through some bigger life questions like, I don't know, I'll just throw this out randomly, "How long should I stay in Puerto Rico?" I've been inspired to write a lot, just not here. I have lots on my mind, lots to say, just not all of it needs to be detailed on the blog. But hypothetically, if I was asking myself how long I should stay in Puerto Rico, I would hypothetically have decided that I'll head home after about two years, which happens to be this fall. (Whoa. Two years.)

I say I've been writing. During this season, I have a lot of extra time in the evenings, so I decided it would be good to start a project. About a month ago, I created a sort of outline of my life (so far). I broke it down into 28 chapters (sidenote, I'll be 28 next week, send birthday cards / large presents / Dr Pepper to: PO Box 1416 Juana Diaz, PR 00795). Each of those chapters is a different piece about what has helped me become me (so far). Some of them are time periods or seasons, like "before I was born," and some of them are places, like "Grace Adventures," and "Tanzania," and some of them are both, like "High School," and "Grand Valley State University." It's been fruitful, and I have yet to experience writers block. I've got a notebook that is nearly full. And I'm glad it's a notebook, writing by hand is... different, better, more permanent. Only serious writers and lunatics fill notebooks. And I'm not a lunatic. So far. Lunatic notebooks, I think, have more diagrams and threats and secret codes and are probably better organized than mine.

I started it without knowing where it would go. Maybe a memoir one day. Maybe just a collection of notes for me to feel good about, or for my descendants to judge me by. Anyway, It's helped me to notice some trends in my life that I otherwise might not have recognized, and brought back a lot of memories that I've forgotten (or repressed?). There has been some cringing, too. "Yeah, I did do/say/eat that... eesh."

As for this blog: I haven't really written much recently about the work that I'm doing here, and I feel like I ought to fill you all in on the goings on of CDC. Much has happened. I'll do my best in the coming days to fill you in. Thankfully, it's a leap year, and I've got an extra day to get to that 3/4 post threshold this month....

Took this on Monday. My apologies, in advance, those of you in cooler climes: