Friday, December 31, 2004
It makes me reflect on something that Fr. Theodore said in a sermon (it must have been on Christmas Eve morning, I think) about what the different animals and people brought to Christ. The Magi brought gifts. The earth (creation) offered a cave and a manger. The shepherds (this is the best part) brought their wonder. Being illiterate, but being connected to God because of spending countless days in the quiet of the wilderness, tending their sheep, they were simple people on the outside with a depth that I cannot touch (with all the noise and books and learning I have in my life). And I see that wonder in Pavlos (and his cousins) everyday. No, wait, not just everyday, but at least once an hour, maybe even once every ten minutes. Pavlos’ favorite word right now is “wow”. Everything we see or do is a moment of “wow” for him. Where are my “wow” moments, I think to myself? They are, technically, every day, every hour, every minute. But, my heart has been hardened to them by time and sin. When I am told that my salvation is through my child and husband, I realize that through Pavlos, that hard heart may have a crack in it… exposing itself for just a moment. And that with each Pavlos “wow”, there is a small “wow” in my heart, too.
On Christmas Day we found out that our beloved Metropolitan, His Eminence Metropolitan Anthony, reposed after a five week battle with cancer. He was due to retire in the next year. May his memory be eternal!
Wednesday, December 22, 2004
Yesterday I finished our Christmas shopping. Normally I'm the kind of person who is done by December 1. But this year, something special was released on DVD on December 21 and I wanted to get that something special for my brother. Can you guess what it is? Let me give you a few hints... idiots, sweet, liger?!?!? Got it now? It's Napolean Dynamite! I am going to add it to my favorite movies on my blogger profile. I saw it with my sister this summer in the theater. It is so hysterically funny... we were literally rolling in the aisles. My brother will love it! And, in case you missed the theatrical release, I hightly recommend at least renting it. It's about all the geeky people you knew in high school all rolled into one. And it's a high school movie that doesn't have swearing, drinking, drugs, or sex. Can you believe it? And it's still funny! Who would have thought.
Last night was Paul's work Christmas party (I should probably refer to it as a "Holiday" party because there was nothing "Christmassy" about this party). Not that I didn't have fun. We had a great time. He works for a fairly small company (there are only 20 employees here in Portland) so everyone knows each other. Very intimate. It was at Henry's Tavern in NW Portland. I guess that's a big hang out for the single, after work crowd. The cool thing is they have 100 different beers on tap. Talk about variety. We played pool, had an open tab (free drinks... although I can't drink because of my meds), and then had a delicious meal (food's not cheap... although we both had shrimp dishes). All paid for by the owner of the company who flew in just for the party. What a life. Some people got completely trashed and others didn't have a thing to drink. A good balance.
I don't know if I will have an opportunity to post anything until after the Nativity (which is, by the way, my name day, too) with family coming in from out of town tomorrow and all the services in the next few days. I wish you all a very blessed Nativity (I know it's early but Christ is Born! Glorify Him!).
Monday, December 20, 2004
The hardest part was hearing him cough. And with each cough, tears would stream down his little cheeks because it hurt. That's the difficulties of being a parent. And this is just a bad infection. I can not even imagine what life would be like for those countless families who have little one's with life threatening illnesses. Or my grandparents who lost their son due to illness when he was four years old.
Tuesday, December 14, 2004
One final note, last night we went out to dinner with my family for my birthday. My brother's fiance was there, too. She is very sweet and we all like her a lot. Her gift to me was U2's new CD How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. Even though I already own the new CD, Hannah (future sister-in-law) has scored major points with me. I'm starting to like her more than I like my brother (just kidding, Yianni). How could I not like someone who buys me U2?
Wednesday, December 08, 2004
We had parish council elections last Sunday. My DH, Paul, was nominated and, this year, he felt that he did not have a valid excuse to not run (last year he was nominated and declined because he was working almost full time and going to school full time). Needless to say, Paul is now a member of the St. John the Baptist Greek Orthodox Church parish Council. I dedicate the Fr. Seraphim quotation to you, my darling husband (from your lovely wife:)
Those of you that have the privilege of knowing my husband may have noticed that he is a bit shy. So I am surprised that he is now on parish council. Not that only wild and crazy outgoing people are on parish council, it just seems that (and remember, I have grown up in a couple of different GREEK Orthodox parishes) the schmoozier you are, the more likely you are to be on parish council (just my humble opinion). I was once approached, years ago, to have my name on the ballot. I wanted to decline because I was a full time grad student and I was working full time, but the person informed me that I didn't have to worry, I wouldn't win (wink wink, nudge nudge). I was appalled. Needless to say, I did decline. This did not happen at the parish we currently attend (St. John's was but a twinkle in Metropolitan Anthony's eye). Anyway, I am of the opinion that my husband is, of course amazing and wonderful and I am sure he will be a great asset to the group (he doesn't read my blog so I can say these great things about him).
This leads me to our prayer request. We currently live a 30 minute drive (on a a good day) from St. John's. Where we live is less expensive than where the church is located. We have been looking for a home to buy (we live in a home that my parent's own... can't beat the rent:) and we were going to stay here, in Vancouver. But, after much prayer, thought, and discussions with our spiritual father (and with Paul having to go to meetings at church) we are looking in the Beaverton/Hillsboro area. We are praying that God will find a way to keep me at home (with Pavlos) and that we can make ends meet only on Paul's salary. It will be difficult. Please pray for us! Thank you...
Monday, December 06, 2004
I can see where fans of Stephen King, and fans of the Dark Tower series especially (keep in mind that he started the first book in the 70's, and just recently published the last book) may not have been thrilled with the ending. I would like to remind them that ka is a circle and that Roland still needs to come to terms with his past. He needs to forgive himself and that is why he is still in the circle. Maybe the next time around, Roland will actually find what he is looking for... (remember, I don't want to give away the ending:), but I thought the ending made total sense. And, anyway, real life (which this books is so far from) isn't about happy endings. In fact, I usually respect an author more if the ending is not what I suspected or it isn't some Hallmark contrived commercial ending where everyone is happy, happy happy! Thanks for reading...
***NOTE*** I wrote this while I was subbing sixth grade science (during my break). Please forgive me if it sounds a bit random and all over the place.
Wednesday, December 01, 2004
The gears are grinding slowly this week. I think that Thanksgiving did me in! So, here are a few links for you to browse at your leisure. Hopefully, my brain will start working again and I can write something with more depth.
***NOTE*** if anyone knows where I can get books in Greek, let me know. I am trying to avoid ordering directly from