Saturday, March 31, 2007

Bowling Alley Star

In real life, I am a terrible bowler. Terrible. I don't think I've ever bowled 100 .. usually I only bowl around a 60 or so. It's horribly embarrassing.

But in Wii life, I am an excellent bowler! Yesterday AND today I managed to bowl amazingly in the "bowl around these oddly placed barriers" challenge. Ahh, the Wii has revolutionized my bowling ability. I only wish I could showcase these skills for the real world.

By far my favourite part of the Wii is making Miis! Man, talk about good times. I wish everyone's Mii could be as awesome as Junior's, it looks EXACTLY like her. Kind of scary actually.

Not much other news, except that soon I will be slightly less directionally challenged, with the help of my new GPS! I got a great deal from Amazon and the super fast shipping means it's already waiting for me in California. Next weekend we'll be heading down to visit my brother. I was trying to find out whether one can visit the Googleplex for some kind of tour ... but ironically I cannot seem to find such information using Google. What am I doing wrong!?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

LOL .. attempt #2

One of my teens sent this to me and I swear I laughed for an hour straight. It's awesome! You must watch.

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Lost in Translation?

(Hubby says that was one of the worst movies he ever saw! Correction: he doesn't admit to having seen it at all.)

Two songs for y'all ... one is an English translation of a Spanish song, one is a Spanish translation of an English song. We'll be sharing these in Missions Hour this Sunday. Yay! Who wants to guess the name of the song that has been translated into Spanish? I'll be giving out e-props as a prize! (And you can't guess if you are from Chile!)

1. Siempre que me muevo es en Ti

Siempre que me muevo es en Ti
Junto a Ti Cristo
Siempre que respiro es en Ti
Siempre cada paso es en Ti
Tu eres mi camino
Siempre que respiro es en Ti

Oh Tu gracia y Tu bondad
Miro alrededor Tu estas alli
Tu amor me capturo
Oh gran Dios de amor
No entiendo aun

2. The YoYo Song

I don’t want to be a yo-yo
A yo-yo
A yo-yo
I don’t want to be a yo-yo
A yo-yo
A yo-yo

‘Cause it’s sometimes up
It’s sometimes down
It’s on its side
Or spinning around

I want to be like an arrow
Walking down God’s narrow path
I’ll keep my eyes on Jesus
And I will never look back

Yesterday I was watching Friends and I have a few choice phrases to share. If you don't watch Friends, what is the matter with you? It's sooo funny.

It tastes like feet!
Ross married Rachel in Vegas and got divorced! AGAIN!
What's not to like? Cream? Good. Custard? Good. Meat? Gooooood.
Hurricane Gloria didn't break the porch swing, Monica did!

Ok yes, those are all from the same show. But it was a good one.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Squeah - Place of Refuge

Just got back from our youth group retreat and it was excellent. But before I go into that, I wanted to tell you all that I'm currently watching CBC's Test the Nation (the first nationwide IQ test!) I took the test online already so I am only watching for entertainment. So far I have learned that CBC has some serious technical issues that one would hope they would have fixed.... I mean .. if you're going to show a video and ask questions, you should really make sure that the video doesn't pixellate and stall. Anyway, let's talk about the test later. (Edit: It's not Sunday any more.... so this post is a bit outdated.)

The theme of the retreat was "Got Purpose?" and our theme verse was 1 Corinthians 10:31.... "So whether you eat or drink, whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." This weekend, I was also mulling over Tree's recent post where she referred to the blog about debunking Christianity.... I did go and visit the site, but didn't really study it for long - kind of found it a bit hard to navigate, actually, but that might just be me. I do think it's sad that someone who once preached about God could turn so against God.... and that he would feel that Christianity actually prevents one from living a full life, contrary to how Jesus said that he had come to give us life, that we could have it to the full.

I think this is a question many people, perhaps (to generalize) often teenagers, struggle with. Does Christianity impose limitations on the life we can lead, or does it instead offer a fuller life? The answer seems to depend on your perspective. Consider the worldly perspective - the me first, take care of number one attitude. From this viewpoint, any "lifestyle changes" would seem like limitations. But from the other perspective, where life is lived in community with others and with God, those lifestyle changes that we make are beneficial to ourselves and others. I think Tree touched on this in her post. The bottom line is that God does offer us an abundant life. Maybe sometimes we don't know how to receive it, or how to live it to the fullest. Maybe we fall back into the worldly view sometimes. Maybe we just don't really understand what Jesus meant about having life to the full.

Sometimes I think our problem is shortsightedness... and a little selfishness too. But in my view, God's promises include a joy that reaches deep into our hearts, and peace that lasts even through troubling times ... the "debunkers" seem not to have really experienced this. They talk about judgmental Christians, the "myth" of tithing equals more providence from God, one post I browsed through talked about how the author had come to faith through his own fear in the devil and relief that Christianity offered protection. But have these folks experienced the relational God?

I'm just musing through many thoughts right now, thinking of how to help our teens grow closer to Christ, fearing that some of them will one day turn into debunkers. May God help me to live a life that models after Christ. It's certainly not an easy path, but it is rewarding.

Monday, March 12, 2007

Sometimes, isn't a little punishment good for the soul?

Ah, morning radio. It's like the pesky friend you sometimes like, but more often find just slightly too annoying to pay full attention to. This morning, the topic (extended from Friday) was from a book written by a mother of five, regarding how to discipline your children without punishments. Please bear in mind that I haven't read this book, nor do I plan to, since the non-existent children I have are pretty well-behaved... usually. It won't stop me from commenting, though.

I didn't get to hear the whole segment, traffic being light today so that I arrived at work earlier than expected, but I gather the point she was making was that you don't need to punish your kids in order to resolve a problem. For example, if her teenager broke curfew by coming home at 3 AM, she would not do something like take away the cell phone for a week, or ground the kid. (What she WOULD do - I'm not sure - since she just said some vague nonsense about how there should be a positive solution.) (Here's where reading the book would make this post a bit more on point eh.) Someone asked, aren't there negative consequences in the real world when you do something wrong, and aren't you just teaching your kids that there are no negative consequences... her response was that yes, the real world has negative consequences, but as a parent you have a vested interest in how your kids turn out, and you should be the one to work positively with them.

I suppose her argument has some merit... after all, some forms of punishment are probably a bit harsh. I'm sure every parent out there has flown into a rage at some point in time. But try as I might, I could not envision what positive reaction I might be able to have to my kid doing something wrong. Let's say, for example, that I had a toddler who, despite my warnings not to throw that ball in the house, threw a ball into the TV. Clearly the answer isn't necessarily a spanking, but would it be wrong of me to remove the ball? Or to have the child apologize and sit in a time-out? I just can't think what "positive" thing I could do. Apparently one suggestion this author has is to have a "time-in" - you basically spend that few minutes teaching your child how to calm down, rub his or her back, give a hug, let him/her bang out frustrations on a toy drum, etc.

Frankly, I find this absurd. I can subscribe to the Nanny 911 or Supernanny form of time-out (the kid gets a few minutes to sit alone, and then the parent sits down to explain what said child did wrong), but it seems weird to immediately dole out the backrubs and hugs and positivity.... never mind the mixed message involved in banging on a toy drum to let out anger (if a drum is okay, why wouldn't younger sibling's head also suffice?) I understand how one must work on the root of the problem and teach problem-solving as opposed to fits of anger, but when a fit of anger occurs, is that really the time to dig into what the root of the problem is? Or is that the time to say "Go to your room NOW and don't you dare give me that look if you want to get out of your room before you're 30."

I'm clearly going to be a harsh parent one day. Have some pity for my future kids.

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Another weekend goes by

I'm not sure why I haven't posted much lately... sometimes I have something I want to say, and then it slips out of my head before I get around to posting. Sometimes I just have nothing to say.

How was your weekend? Mine was pretty good. We went to a seminar on Saturday about how to help teens who are struggling and hurting ... it was fairly eye-opening. Too bad we had to give up sleeping in to go... I LOVE sleeping in on a Saturday, as it is the only day available to enjoy that luxury. (Don't bother reminding me that if I have kids, I won't ever get to sleep in ... I plan to develop a healthy sleeping-in habit in my kids.) Today, we had church, did some shopping with my mom, and then headed to the Canucks game-watching affair... let's just not discuss it.

I read a blog recently where the person was discussing married life. I think this person has been married for about the same amount of time as hubby and I. She mentioned how people frequently inquire as to how married life is, and she gives a standard response about how it's great on some days, and yet there are some days where you just bury yourself in your room, cry and cry and wonder why you married the person you did. I chuckled when I read this, but then I realized she wasn't joking.

Doesn't it seem a bit dramatic to you.... having days that are so bad, you actually sob about why you married that person? Obviously, married life (and life in general) has its ups and downs, but I can't say I've ever felt quite that sad or upset. Hubs and I are kind of opposite in terms of who we are, what we like, etc, and at the same time we are both rather stubborn, competitive, and unwilling to compromise or lose. You can see how conflicts may arise. Most of the time we resolve our conflicts pretty quickly. I can't imagine how awful it would be to feel so down in the dumps as to have to wonder why I married him.

But perhaps for some people, drama is just a normal thing.

Must go - the laundry is calling and it refuses to just leave a message on the answering machine. Demanding fool.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Pardon me, this street is blocked, we are moving

I've previously discussed my fondness for open houses... we're not exactly looking to move, but I'm always keeping an eye open for a good bargain. Such a deal does not really seem to exist these days, but it doesn't stop me from checking MLS every once in a while.

Anyway, the house I discussed in that post has now sold.... no one has moved in, but the new owners have been periodically stopping by the house to do some work. The hubs went over two weeks ago to chat and found out that they paid a rather astronomical amount for the house only to decide to tear it down and build a brand new (monster) house. When I heard this, I was shocked - I suppose it's just the reality of housing around here, it makes more sense for people to buy for land value only when the houses are old, even when they are renovated.

Hubby and I came up with an idea though... we thought hey, maybe we should ask them if they want to trade houses. After all, our house is also an older house, and it's only a little bit smaller than theirs, and our lot is almost the same size. The bonus to us would be living in a newly renovated, slightly larger house, meaning it would buy us some time before having to "move up" or rebuild... and if we decided to rebuild later, we'd still have that big lot in a good neighbourhood. I'm not sure what the bonus to them would be, but let's just call it even for them... they'd still have a good lot on which to build their monster house.

We laughed about the idea, but at the same time we thought it was an awesome idea. We would gain an extra family room and I think also an extra bathroom... we wouldn't have to worry about repainting the exterior or fixing the roof as I believe those were both new... we would have laminate flooring and wouldn't have to look at carpet where I spilled an entire pitcher of juice... AND moving costs would be super low. All we would need is a few friends to form an assembly line across the street, and a dolly on which to wheel our furniture out our old driveway and into our NEW driveway. (They even face each other!) Forget putting things in boxes, we'll just carry them across. I can't think of a better way to move.

It wasn't until this weekend that we spotted them again though, and I asked the hubby to go over and canvass the idea with them. He was gone for some time and I started to get myself worked up over our move. Heh. Turns out, the owner would have been interested, but unfortunately they've already disconnected everything in the house and begun their teardown process. He said it was too bad we hadn't asked him a few weeks earlier. He told the hubby that he didn't even care what the house looked like when he bought it, since he was only interested in tearing it down. He also mentioned that if we were thinking of selling or renovating, he had friends who would be willing to buy, and renovating would be useless. Later we saw him in the window staring at our house. I'd like to think he was looking with some regret that he didn't just come up with the trading idea on his own (since he probably would have paid less for our house) ... but probably he was just thinking to himself, what kind of weirdo offers to trade houses!

Alas, there is no need to change your address books for the moment. Nor will you be confused by having to turn left into the driveway rather than right. I can't pretend I'm not a little disappointed though. Cordoning off our street for our one hour move would have been fun.