Friday, September 26, 2008

Popcorn's Patriarchs (and yours)

This fall I am in a Bible study focusing on Genesis and the Patriarchs... Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. This is a Beth Moore study that is, as always, very, very enlightening. I "watched", rather listened to the videos on my lappy while driving to the other side of Texas to take my daughter the rest of her worldly possessions. Now I'm knee deep into the text as I work through the weekly sessions. There are five lessons, then a wrap up video to each week's session for a total of 11 weeks.One amazing thing is the name changing that goes on in Genesis and continues to happen throughout the Bible. God changes Abram's name to Abraham. The change is made by adding something to it, a new syllable, a whole new pronunciation. God makes the addition not at the beginning, not at the end, but in the smack dab middle of his name. The very center of Abraham is added to. He adds the Hebrew letter he which makes a sound of breathing out, just as an H does in English. God literally and figuratively breathes Himself into Abram and changes him to Abraham "Father of Multitudes"(Genesis 17:5) With God's breath in him, Abraham is changed not only in name but in possibilities. He is now "father of many"... given the ability to live out the impossible possibility...he's 100 years old for pete's sake. God labeled him the father of many before elderly Sarah had born him one child. Amazing.

Popcorn's Pumpkins

I love fall. Just love it. Love the sliding temperatures, love the changing light, love the orange and yellow leaves, love the crisp mornings, love the leaves on the sidewalk. But most of all, I love PUMPKINS. I am currently on pumpkin watch....are they in bins at the grocery store yet????? If they are, they'll be on my front porch soon.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Popcorn's Prediction

This ill mannered man is big trouble.

Popcorn's Pastime: Sitting in the Dentist's Chair

Oh my mercy sakes alive goodness gracious heaven help me good gravy. All I have done all summer long and now into the fall is sit in the dentist's chair with octopus fingers in my mouth. What was it today? A cavity under a thirteen some odd year old crown. My precious dentist friend Carol Ann got out her, and I kid you not dear reader, her tooth saw. That was right after she got out her five inch needle to insert into my lower right jaw. I honestly expected it to come out the other side. There was not enough meat on my inner jaw to accommodate that long needle. She sawed off the old crown and I swear took a jack hammer to the thing, hammered out the decay. ...Then took ten impressions each of which her helper stood behind me and "helped" me hold my jaw "nice and tight". My friend the dentist Carol Ann can thank my friends CP and Sarah for my showing up at 1:00 today. I had double booked a lunch with Carol, realized it, then called her and said, well I have a dental appt....but then called her back and said I am cancelling the dental thing see you at Black Walnut....what did CP say????? Your teeth are more important Mel. Then my friend Sarah called to catch up after hurricane chaos and I whined to her...she said Mel, just go. Get it over with. You've got to I did. Dang those friends that speak the truth.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Popcorn's Possession Confession

Today is trash pick up eve for us. I have to confess that every Monday and every Thursday I get the same urge to get huge green sturdy 39 gallon trash bags and just start chunkin' stuff in and putting it on the curb. I get so tired of the clutter. Clutter I have purchased over the years. There is something in me that is changing...I no longer really want much stuff. I want clean, smooth, "negative" space as the A.S.I.D. people call it. Is it true we spend the first 40 years acquiring and the next 40 giving it away???? Young couples beware!!! Just watch what you buy. Because one day you will reach a point when it all just becomes too much to dust, vacuum, wash, iron, tune, mop, recover (as in upholstery), mow, weed eat, fertilize, straighten, water, plant, groom, trim, feed, walk, re grout, re tile, polish, dry, fix, oil,prune, repaint, shine, replace, rearrange, insure, update, get the picture. My advice? Keep it simple from the get go. That way the only thing that will be cluttered is your bank account.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Popcorn's Plea: Don't End Up Here

Enjoying dinner al fresco at my friend Super Churchlady's house during Ike week, we briefly discussed how Ike caused us to look some things square in the eye. One is realizing how vastly important relationships are in life. Friendships, interactions with our kids and husbands, family, neighbors, all so very time worthy. We agreed life is all about relationships and that we should make them tippy top priority. Never mind if the window treatments in the house are not just so, never mind the clutter on the counter, never mind the shoes piling up by the back stairs, never mind the folded laundry on the ping pong table. Let's just have people over anyway! People don't care if things are perfect. Everyone really just enjoys getting together and gabbing and eating and as SCL put it "looking into each other's faces".

I hate that as life marches on, some relationships are abandoned. Not out of any sort of malice, but just a lack of time. Or a lack of things in common. Or a job change. Or a move. Or a shift in thought. Or a difference of opinion. Or lifestyles that don't mesh. Or I have three kids you have none. Or I live modestly, you live extravagantly. Or my child's flawed, yours is perfect. Or I'm still married, you're divorced. Or you never make mistakes, I do. Or my son quit boy scouts, yours didn't. Or I no longer teach, you do. Or you got mad at our church and left, I stayed. Or I'm busy and you're busy with no time to chat. The list goes on and on. I hate that. Relationships are important to me, I realize that today more than I ever have before. Today I vow that maintaining my important relationships will be more of a priority than it has been. That I won't let anything rob me of what I believe is so important. I need friendship. Christ is all about relationship with Him. He knows how vital it is to us. I vow to strengthen my connections and prevent them fading into the foggy blur of the past.

What's It All About Alfie?

Today I am thankful that I am not a control freak. I use that word "freak" in a non judgemental, non (or un?)condemning way. Just an individual who needs to feel that her influence bears weight on all the things that happen around her, great influence. So much so, that it is within the realm of her control thereby protecting her from the adversities or consequences that might have occurred without the exertion of this influence. Weather can't be controlled. When weather threatens to be deadly, the control freak, uh.... freaks. It' hard for me to understand due to my non controlling nature. But if I were one, now would be the time to freak. Ike destroyed so much of what we love here in Texas. Trees are ripped from their roots and are laying in the streets. Traffic signals are out and every intersection is a must stop four way. Now that's a lot of people to trust. For me no problem, but I feel for the controlling types. Galveston Island is destroyed to the point where people cannot even go there to look at their houses. Sad day. In addition to that, Ray Boltz "comes out" and announces he's homosexual. And that he is now truly happy having unveiled this hidden truth in his life that has been the source of so much pain during his umpteen many years as a Christian recording artist. That he just had to tell his wife of 33 years and his four children a couple of Christmases ago and now he feels so much better. That he is now thrilled to be "living a normal gay lifestyle in Florida."Huh? So disturbing. In addition to that, assorted bastions of finance in America find themselves in dire peril. The foundational reasons for which seem quite unnerving. Again, most disturbing. In addition to that, the minister of music at church was ushered out the door recently. I'm not sure how to handle this. I liked him. He was talented and did a good job in my book. He never returned from a three month sabbatical. "The church was moving in a different direction from so and so." Ok. I get that. But how does one handle the friendship side of that curve ball? I like the interim minister, he's great. How can I like this guy when I still feel a sense of friendship and loyalty to the other one? Oy. Disturbing. I cannot control any of these circumstances, that's why I'm glad I'm not a control freak tonight. If I were, I might have to put up with anxiety, night sweats, a racing heart, an upset tummy, and restless sleep. I would totally be freaking out. So glad I'm not that type.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Popcorn's Power Back On, Kind of A Drag

Oddly enough, I sort of enjoyed being powerless for four days due to Ike's violent winds. I had inklings of sort of liking it while it was happening but those inklings were pushed to the back of my mind as more pressing issues, like constant sweating, ice searches, and low propane tanks preoccupied us. I knew I was secretly enjoying the fact that I could not cook, I could not grocery shop, I could not do laundry, I couldn't go anywhere because there was no where to go, and I could not stay up late because what's there to do in a dark house? My daytime options were to...ride my bike, sit on the back porch and read, do my Bible study homework, work on my Christmas ornaments that I have to make for an ornament exchange (which I normally do two nights before the party...), eat, visit with neighbors, go sit in my church's "Trinity Cafe" and check my e mail, do my laundry in the nursery's washer and dryers, have coffee served to me by Pastor Phil, heck, who can complain?? .... Night time options were to ....sit on dear friends' back porch and chat it up while grilling whatever we had to flop on the burners, all the while enjoying a lovely coolish breeze, grill hot dogs at a neighbors' whose family had left to visit a college son and he was there alone wanting company and conversation, sit by candlelight and listen to the radio (I'm not kidding, we were that grannyish, and loved it) , take a candlelight bubble bath...then crawl in bed and listen to our back neighbor's generator hum us to sleep, then sleep late because school is canceled, work is canceled, everything unfun is canceled. What's to complain about for cryin' out loud??? I loved seeing my neighbors outside leaning on rakes visiting and laughing. We were all unplugged and forced into old fashioned interactions. It was beautiful! It was fun while it lasted. Our power came back on about 8 last night and yes, we were thrilled to have light, but on the other hand...the secret me knew the real party was over.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


Friends it looks like the storm is headed for us...we are bringing in the yard art, a.k.a. missiles, taking down the flags, and bringing in the dog bowls here in south Texas. I'm cooking a roast and potatoes and chopping up a salad for the fridge. Ice is crammed in the freezer. Salsa ready to whirl in the processor. Cookie dough stands ready on the air bake sheet. A brand new Traditional Home and Elle are on the coffee table beside three flashlights, batteries in the remotes. Football game canceled, school on hold, gas in tank, Popcorn on knees. More as it develops....xxoo

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

LIVE IN YOUR LOVE... Popcorn's Post Concert Wrap Up

Cary's CD concert went well. We had a better than imagined turnout and the crowd really enjoyed the music. The title of the record, Live In Your Love, sums up the goal of a Christian's life. Because Christ loved us enough to give his life for all of mankind's sins, we can live in his love through thick and thin throughout our lives. And let me tell you, the Popcorn's know it can get thick. Maybe your life has never had a bump, or a, you lucky duck, I hope it never does. But ours has and our family and friends have experienced a trial or two as well through the years. When the darts of death, the bombs of illness and the other millions of possible arrows start their assault, the only place to be is in the big middle of the comforting love only He can give. And we are the conduits of that love for each other. By living in His love, we become the face, the heart, the hands, and the feet that provide for the immediate needs of those around us allowing them to feel the love of Christ through our actions.

Thanks so much to those of you that attended Friday night. It was wonderful of you to come and your presence meant the world to us. Thanks from the bottom of our hearts for all of the sweet, ego boosting e-mails also. You are all so very kind. May we Live In His Love all the days of our lives.