What a Beautiful Night

Although my travels aren’t exactly over, I’m finally able to relax. The two events that I had this week are over and done, and I can get back to my life. It is lovely here, though. I’m sitting in the Desert Botantical Gardens with the sounds of night, an acoustic guitar, and chattering voices surrounding me. Though it was nearly unbearable in the upper 90s this afternoon, the evening has softened to a delightful low 80s. Times like this are when I remember how much I love my job. I got sleepy enough to get cranky this morning and just want to go home in that childlike way. I snapped out of it soon enough. The desire for a good night’s sleep is still there quite strong, but it’s softened just a little bit. Perhaps it has something to do with this lovely evening. It’s also easy to forget how simple things can be in life when we’re running from space to space, job to job, thought to thought, but it’s important to remember the ease of things sometimes.

City Report: Minneapolis

I’ll be honest, when I was told that I was going to be going to Minneapolis for an event, let’s just say I didn’t jump for joy. I tend to avoid the Midwest. I think it’s because I was forced to spend so much time in Ohio as a child. In the words of my beloved mother “it’s not all that bad. I can agree with her, but I don’t know if it’s all that good either. Anyway, I wasn’t refreshed. But considering the fact that I’m writing this post on my way from Minneapolis to Phoenix, I can say that I misunderestimated the fine city of Minneapolis. I stayed in a lovely hotel called the Ivy. If you find yourself in one of the Twin Cities, I definitely recommend it. It’s a part of Starwood’s swanky Luxury Collection. In my room there was this cute little book which displayed all of the Luxury Collection Hotels in the world. I’ve decided to at least hit half of them in next five years. So far I’ve got two down. I’m up for suggestions on which one I should go for next. (www.luxurycollection.com. I would say that I’ll go see all of them, but there are some where there are multpiple in one city, plus there are some in cities that I have no desire to go.

But, I digress. Minneapolis. I feel like it should be called The City of Skybridges. Seriously, the entire city is made of sky bridges. At first I thought it was just the convention center, but no, when you go downtown they’re all over the place. I’m guessing it’s because it get so freaking cold there. It was in the low 40s when I was there. So I went from 70 in DC to 40 in Minneapolis, to 90 in Phoenix.  Heh.

Greeness? I don’t know how much I can comment on that overall. I did, however, enjoy the fact that most of the food is logically grown because we were around so many different farms, etc. The food tasted fresh and delicious. So would I go back? Perhaps if I were being paid to…

Time for a Personality Quiz!

  Your Major and Minor Personality Types
Characteristics of all four personality types can be found within each of us, but there is almost always one personality type that is dominant. We call this the major personality type.

The Chemistry Profile also identifies your minor or secondary personality type. You exhibit some aspects of this personality type, though not to the same degree as with your major type.

  • Your major personality type = Negotiator
  • Your minor personality type = Builder

You are a NEGOTIATOR/builder

You care about the big picture. You are comfortable with large, ambiguous issues. You carefully weigh all of the variables involved, and regularly come up with imaginative solutions to complex problems.

You are friendly and humane. You have a big heart; you tend to trust people and sympathize with them easily. You want to make others happy and self-confident. So you work to build supportive networks among friends and kin.

Your empathy and kindness spill over into a desire to make the world a better place. And with your resilience and creativity, your ability to do many things at the same time, and your cleverness with words, you can be remarkably effective at improving the lives of others.

You are ambitious for your family and friends, but not always for yourself. You like an environment of sharing and consensus and you enjoy working in teams and planning long term.

You tend to be socially well-adjusted and skilled at inspiring others to reach their goals. So you are an empathetic and engaging companion.

A Week of Stone Throwing

I think this has been one of the more spiritually challenging weeks of my life. First on Wednesday, I had to go and completely put myself out there and do my part to bring people to Christ. I had to approach people that I don’t know…something that made the introvert in me scream. The longer I was there, though, the better it got. Then on Thursday, I had to talk to a friend about something that was bothering me. People who know me are aware that I can be a pretty blunt person, but I really had to take a step back and not be so critical. I had to focus on expressing what activities were really bothering or concerning me instead of being the one to make judgements or dictate the way that I think or would like things to be. It was difficult, but the end, I think that going that route was a better idea.

 

Also on Thursday was my first bible study. This was a challenge in patience because I had some issues with the organization. That’s the megalomaniac and event planner in me. I want everything the way I want it to be. Kim got me a birthday card that once said “I’m not difficult to please, I just like things done my way.” Truer words…

 

Today, I went back to my roots. A more traditional kind of church experience that involves much different theatrics then I’m used to at Frontline. Though it was a concert of sorts, there was a part that had like a mini church service. Much like Todd’s messages, there was a part when you could express if you weren’t sure if you were going to be saved and take action if you wanted to be saved there. This service was more bold in having those people who felt that way stepping forward. I don’t know why, but I felt myself moving forward. Do I doubt that I am saved? I had been feeling so good about my relationship with God, but why would I do something that if I wasn’t sure? Why would I feel the need to stand in front of several hundred strangers and present myself as a woman who isn’t sure that she’s saved?  I still don’t have the answer to that one. They did their “saving prayer” and then took us all to a room to explain a little about what being a new believer was like. I’m still lost in thought over this.

 

After I got back to the theatre the real concert started. This is where they lost me a little more. It was Christian rap. Now, granted, I had a LOT of trouble getting used to the music at Frontline having grown up Southern Baptist where a bass guitar and drum set were reserved for VERY special occasions, but still. The rappers had all this bling and wore sunglasses, and I just feel that those material things aren’t in God. I’m not saying that you should walk around like a Seven Day Adventist, but I don’t know if someone who’s a spiritual leader should be walking about like 50 cent.

 

This is where I struggle with myself. You can’t judge a person’s “Christianess” by how the dress or by the fact that wear diamonds. If I had the money who’s to say that I wouldn’t have such things, too? Would I suddenly have a handicap when it comes to Witnessing?

 

To add a nice cap on this week of spiritual rigor, I come home and my Mom tells me that she’s not sure that she believes some of what’s printed in the Bible. She’s not completely sure that Christ died on the Cross for our sins. That He existed in the first place. Whoa. I had thought that this was one of the most spiritually grounded women that I knew. I guess that’s where my error was. I assumed that just because she had some questions about what’s in the Bible and her religion, that she had moved away from God. I think it’s pretty easy to make that assumption. I, of course, was ready to pounce with all of the information that I have learned from Frontline in the past few months. She wasn’t having it. I think she’s so disillusioned by men and their wicked deeds. I don’t blame her, the world is in a state of chaos, I’m sure there are a lot of people who are seeking truth. I don’t feel like I need to, but I can respect that she will. Who’s to say that  I won’t find myself in the same position later in my life? How can I be so quick to once again criticize when I’m not even completely sure where I am in my walk with Christ right now? Of course, this revelation comes are I thought about it, and after a long and exhausting argument between the two of us that covered topics over and beyond religion. I’m glad it’s Friday and I can put a solid cap on the week. I’ve got some serious growth and praying to do.

 

Jesus said “If any one of you is without sin, let him be the first to throw a stone…” John 8:7

For the Love of Music

Music is one of my favorite things. It helps me get through the good times and the bad ones. I can trace this love back to when I was a child. My biological father for one of my birthdays gave me this old stereo. Mind you, this was when CDs were just becoming popular, so it had a tape deck. I had access to so many different kinds of music, it was amazing!

I come from a somewhat musical family. My mom trained to be an opera singer, and my dad spent a lot of time in the orchestra in his youth. It made for an interesting childhood. I still remember that my parents have difference preference in musicals. My dad likes the musicals that are singing heavy and don’t relay on a lot of choreography like My Fair Lady or Fiddler on the Roof. My mom loves musicals that have a lot more choreographed dance. Singin’ in the Rain, An American in Paris, South Pacific, Oklahoma, Carousel. I could go on and on. There are musicals that they both can agree on like The Sound of Music. Because of their love for these wonderful movies/shows and their associated soundtracks, I’ve fallen on love with them as well.

Musicals are so wonderful because they can transform the way a scene is presented. I know some people don’t enjoy them, I think you love them or you hate them. I love watching actors fly across the stage/screen, or fight it out, dance style. I like being able to sing along. Makes me feel more like I’m apart of the scene. Like below…

 

Come on, tell me you didn’t find that delightful. The musicality is wonderful! I think I should start a post series on musicals ; ) In case you’re curious, up above is Annie Get Your Gun. Let’s close out with the always classic Gene Kelly.

 

no more daily bread

You know, it’s interesting how sometimes the message from church has immediate uses in the following week after it’s preached. So, I have this thing where I go on a “fast” whenever I realize that I’m consuming too much of a certain kind of food. It started off with bacon and as of this it’s expanded into other things. What is it this week you ask? Breakfast breads (bagels, muffins, etc.), milk (especially in the form of lattes), and potatoes (chips, and my weakness….French fries) what does this have to do with Todd’s message.
Well, his message was about sin and the one thing that my brother really remembered about this message was to FLEE from temptation. I have been constantly tempted with these foods all week long….especially the fries and the chips. It’s something where I finally just stopped going to places that serve those items. I’ve almost cracked twice. But I can’t. God has really put it in my heart to stay away from these things. I feel He is truly testing my endurance. But I can’t ignore how much better my body feels now that I don’t have those things in my system. I hope that when God decides to test me with the bigger things I’ll be able to abstain as gracefully…

Washington Ballet: Peter Pan

Delightful! The last time I saw the Washington National Ballet was when they did the Nutcracker. I’m not a big fan of that ballet, really, so I didn’t really pay attention. This show was delightful though! It was funny and sweet and the dancing was so graceful and lovely. Also, because of the group we were with we got a behind stage tour during intermission. That immediately had me flashing back to my days in theatre. I miss them so much sometimes. Great ballet, though.

Next Up! The Bolshoi Ballet

High Noon

Two words. Dis. Appointed. I’m sure you all know how I feel about Nora Roberts at this time. I took a break from reading her books having been up completely up to date with everything she had published up until few  years ago. I read Tribute which I feel most likely deserves it’s own review, and thought that I would get back into reading her novels again. It didn’t turn out well. For most of the book, I was thoroughly entertained and connected to her characters. What was weird was that I heard her voice in a lot of this novel, more so then in others. The other thing that I didn’t like was the fact that the end of the novel was so anti-climatic. I’ll be honest, I think part of the problem is the fact that this is one of the Lifetime movies premiering this month. I can already tell just from the previews that it’s not true to the novel, and think it’s a big turn off for me. I’ll have to give the movie a chance this evening, though. Yes, that’s what I do instead of going out on dates or with friends on a Saturday. Watch trashy, sometimes, terrible adpations of Nora Roberts novels on Lifetime. I promise I don’t make a habit of it. ; )