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Confessions of a Thanksgiving slacker

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If you were to show up at my door on Thanksgiving day, I would welcome you into my home. I would offer you a cold beverage and invite you to stay for dinner. The main dish would be a delicious turkey most likely cooked to perfection and filled with delicious stuffing. But if you were to compliment me on the deliciousness of said turkey, I would have to confess that I had nothing to do with the preparation of the bird.

I’m a 46 year old wife and mother of two.

And I have never even attempted to cook a turkey, nor have I ever offered to do so. It seems so daunting. So mystical and wrought with salmonella poisoning potential.

On any given Thanksgiving, I am either in the company of my mother and sisters or my mother-in-law and sisters-in-laws. All of whom are better cooks than me. I am usually relegated to setting the table, making iced tea and putting ice in glasses, and I do so without complaining. Much.

I have also never baked a pie from scratch, made a sweet potato casserole or any number of side dishes considered regular fair for a Thanksgiving dinner. It’s not so much that I can’t cook, I just don’t enjoy cooking. I am perfectly happy to surrender my kitchen to more experienced cooks, help where help is needed and provide comic relief as necessary.

Because I’m quite sure my first Thanksgiving turkey would turn out something like this:

So, what about you?

Are you an experienced turkey cooker?

Any Thanksgiving confessions you’d like to share?

Laughing at instead of with

People are ridiculous.

We do and say stupid things on a regular basis.

I once thought it would be a really good idea to remove the ledges on my office windows with a high powered reciprocal saw.

In retrospect, not such a bright idea. Not bright at all. But no one got hurt, I was able to laugh at myself, and it made for some great blog fodder.

I’ve been seen on more than one occasion walking my kids to the bus stop wearing fuzzy polka-dot pajama pants and a “Who’s your Daddy?” t-shirt. And again, I was able to laugh at myself for doing so.

But in both of the above instances, I choose to share my pictures and my story here. I invited you to laugh. I gave you permission to laugh at me and to do so openly.

I have a confession to make. There are a few websites I used to frequent on a somewhat regular basis because they posted pictures of people looking ridiculous. It was sort of my guilty pleasure. It never occurred to me (because I never gave it much thought) that these pictures were being taken by strangers and submitted to these websites without the consent of the person or persons being photographed. It wasn’t until I heard a news story about one such website that I realized that a what I considered “harmless fun” wasn’t so harmless after all.

It seems a woman recognized a picture of her mother on the website and was quite upset. The website removed the picture, and will remove any such picture upon request, but thanks to search engines and the ability to download virtually any picture from the internet, they’re all still out there somewhere. Besides, the damage has already been done. Someone provided an opportunity for thousands of people to have a good, hearty laugh at someone else’s expense. Someone’s mother’s expense. I wonder how hard they would laugh if they were to find their picture displayed without their permission looking like a hot mess?

Oh, but that would never happen. Because they have more class than to go to Walmart dressed like a dirty pirate hooker.

Just not enough class not to laugh at someone else’s expense.

Editor’s Note: I don’t mean to imply that any website or television program which depicts people being funny unintentionally (whether it be by actions or by their outward appearance) is wrong. America’s Funniest Videos and Candid Camera did that successfully for years. But they did so with the permission of those who were the subjects of said videos. That’s vastly different from what’s happening now. When I find myself laughing at a picture of someone who probably wouldn’t laugh along with me, it shames me. It makes me feel like an anonymous bully. Because basically, that’s what I’ve become.

Be brave (repost)

How to Draw a Picture (Part Eight)
(Excerpt from Duma Key by Stephen King)

Be brave. Don’t be afraid to draw the secret things. No one said art was always a zephyr; sometimes it’s a hurricane. Even then you must not hesitate or change course. Because if you tell yourself the great lie of bad art–that you are in charge–your chance at the truth will be lost. The truth isn’t always pretty. Sometimes it’s a big boy….

The bravery is in the doing, not in the showing. The truth can be hidden away again, if it’s too terrible for the world to look at. And it happens. I’m sure it happens all the time.


 When an idea comes to mind, an artist will often be consumed until he or she can breath life into it. But what about writer’s block? Or the feeling of being overwhelmed by a white canvas staring back at you? Or the chord progression that just isn’t quite cutting it? Why do you suppose that happens? How do you get past it?

I have a theory.

Would you consider the possibility that there are moments, emotions and feelings you dare not share? Things dark, sinister or shameful? So incapacitating that if you could hide them from God you would?

I’m fairly open here in my writing, but there are some things I simply cannot share; or maybe just refuse to share. I know, I know…confession is good for the soul, but some things are between God and me. For now, anyway.

One thing in particular. A story that’s been locked away for too many years. So, I’m going to heed the words of the great sage Stephen King: “The bravery is in the doing, not in the showing.” I’m going to sit down and write a story that will never be told, because “the truth can be hidden away again, if it’s too terrible for the world to look at.”

So, how about you? Do you have a story that will never be told? That you’ve hidden well?

It seeps out, you know.

Through the cracks in your heart.

Come talk to me

“Music hath charms to soothe a savage breast, to soften rocks, or bend a knotted oak.” – William Congreve

(“breast” is often misquoted as “beast”, but I think both would apply)

I have probably been to over 100 concerts. I have always loved music. There is not a specific genre that prefer, although most country music does not cut the mustard for me. Which is ironic because I most definitely have a voice that is well suited for country western songs. My criteria for a song is this: Does it move me? Does it reach into my soul and find a place to rest? If you are a lover of music, I suspect that, like me, there are certain songs and/or artists that help define points in your life. I was reminded earlier this week the CD “Jagged Little Pill” by Alanis Morrissette and “Nick of Time” by Bonnie Raitte were my anthems for several months after a particularly nasty break up. And then there’s Peter Gabriel. The lyrics to some of his songs and the way in which he sings them denotes a level of pain and longing that is almost palatable. I also believe that they expose what many refer to as “the God-shaped hole in his heart”. One of my favorites is “Come Talk to Me”, because while I am rarely at a loss for words, there are some feelings and memories that I hold on to for fear that speaking them out loud would leave me emotionally ravaged and unable to recover. God knows the depths to which I have been, and I have no secrets from my husband. Still, there are some places I have not gone. Is there something that you need to share with a loved one or trusted friend? With God?

Come Talk to Me

The wretched desert takes its form, the jackal proud and tight
In search of you, I feel my way, though the slowest heaving night
Whatever fear invents, I swear it make no sense
I reach through the border fence
Come down, come talk to me

In the swirling, curling storm of desire unuttered words hold fast
With reptile tongue, the lightning lashes towers built to last
Darkness creeps in like a thief and offers no relief
Why are you shaking like a leaf
Come on, come talk to me

Ah please talk to me
Won’t you please talk to me
We can unlock this misery
Come on, come talk to me

I did not come to steal
This all is so unreal
Can’t you show me how you feel now
Come on, come talk to me
Come talk to me

The earthly power sucks shadowed milk from sleepy tears undone
From nippled skin as smooth as silk the bugles blown as one
You lie there with your eyes half closed like there’s no-one there at all
There’s a tension pulling on your face
Come on, come talk to me

Won’t you please talk to me
If you’d just talk to me
Unblock this misery
If you’d only talk to me

Don’t you ever change your mind
Now your future’s so defined
And you act so deaf and blind
[And you act so deaf so blind]
Come on, come talk to me
Come talk to me

I can imagine the moment
Breaking out through the silence
All the things that we both might say
And the heart it will not be denied
‘Til we’re both on the same damn side
All the barriers blown away

I said please talk to me
Won’t you please come talk to me
Just like it used to be
Come on, come talk to me
I did not come to steal
This all is so unreal
Can you show me how you feel now
Come on, come talk to me
Come talk to me

I said please talk to me
If you’d just talk to me
Unblock this misery
If you’d only talk to me

As I stated at the beginning of this post, I have been to a lot of concerts. I have described the performance of this song to friends, and I was pleased to have found it on YouTube, because my description of it was woefully inadequate. It was so powerful to see it performed live. It may do nothing for you. That’s cool, music is such a personal thing. But I wanted to share it, regardless.

P. S. – How AWESOME is that bass player?

Henri the Cat

God’s timing is pretty amazing. I was feeling a wee bit self-righteous yesterday. Then I got this link via an email from my friend Helen. Yes. I was convicted by a cat video. I’m grateful that I have friends and family that love me enough to tell me when I’m being a jerk, and a God who knows what a jerk I am but still loves me enough to sacrifice His Son so that I might live. So this is for them. And a very big thanks to Helen, who is awesome.

Incidentally, there is a disturbingly high number of cat videos on youtube…


5Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:5-7)

So, I’ve been feeling anxious lately. Perhaps a better term would be overwhelmed. There is much to do. Time and time again, I find myself searching out this particular passage, but just as often, I ignore God’s words. Perhaps my biggest struggle is time management. It would be romantic to say that I like to live in the moment. Reality reveals a less flattering picture. Here’s my confession: I am incredibly undisciplined. When I want to do something, I do it very well. When my heart is in it, I know that the end product will most likely be very good. I love “special projects”. Things that take me away from the daily grind; and I’ve had many such projects lately. The problem is, everything that encompasses my daily grind world tends to suffer. This includes my husband, my kids, my home, and most importantly, my time with God.

Do you struggle with this? I don’t have any great revelation or suggestions on how to overcome this particular flaw in my character. I only know that, as I’ve said before, it boils down to dying to ourselves and our selfish desires, taking up our crosses on a DAILY basis, and truly following him. May you be blessed to feel His presence in your life today.