Vogue vs. Bible

greetings from the Party Barge
We are at the Lake. I just finished figuring out how to work the coffee
pot. Yes, I brought my own Starbucks Espresso Roast. Praise God from
whom all blessings flow, and praise the appliance from which the coffee

We took the boat out late yesterday afternoon. Good times. It rained
all last night, but hopefully we will be able to get back out today.

Vogue vs. Bible
The new fall Vogue is out. It's over 800 pages!!! And Sarah Jessica
Parker is on the cover!!! Last year, when I got the fall issue, I went
to Starbucks, got a giant iced coffee and went and sat in a pedicure
chair for a considerable amount of time looking at the pretty pictures.
This year, the fall Vogue is at the lake with me and my self-brewed
Starbucks in this very ugly coffee mug. The Pastor asked me if I felt
bad that all that magazine paper was used and it'll go in the trash. I
said nuh-uh. I still have last year's! And besides, I told him, how
many Bibles do you have? If it is ok for you to have ten Bibles then it
should be ok for me to have a couple of Vogues.

I also got an Us magazine and devoured it as soon as we got in the car
and started the drive to the lake. I am so hungry for news... yes I
consider Us magazine news. I still don't have true internet access,
just what's available on my T-Mobile Sidekick. I go up to the Pastor's
office when I want to use a real computer. But alas, that is a blog
entry for another day. Sigh. Oh, and by the way, we DO have computers
at home, they are just not set up, plugged in or connected to the

And it is Sarah Jessica Parker, NOT Camilla Parker Bowles, on the
cover. I've had to explain this to the Pastor at least six times. Big


it is the glory of God to conceal things

how I am different than the Bible Scholar
actual excerpts from my conversations:
-curves = good
-yes, but, by the time something will fit over my hips... much, much much too big at waist
-I wish I didn't like rice so much.
-I know! I will drink my water. Then I won't want to eat so much, right?
-So how many crunches do you do a day?
-I'm pretty good at yoga. I'm flexible.
-It could jinx you if I wear something I already have.
-No hose. Put sparkly lotion on your legs.

Now, let's compare with the Pastor's conversations, shall we?
-those students will eat up Barth
-blah blah blah Barmen Confession
-why can't they just stick with Lodahl and get them to see that God is love
-...take the Trinity to be the foundation of relationality... if so, it seems that your view must be explicitly incarnational and Christological as well (The Pastor SWEARS that Christological is an actual word, a very common word.)
-you never told me which minor prophets you need help with (Duh, of course not, the church nerd probably got all wrapped up in the major prophets and didn't have time to get to the minor ones.)
-relational theology is all about ecclesiology

and a bunch of other boring stuff

oh what a tangled web we weave
Friday, I was on my way out to be a good mommy and pick up my child from school. As I walked out the front door, I noticed my beloved White House Black Market September catalog in the mailbox. I rejoiced! The new catalog is here! But I was on a mission and was not about to turn around, unlock the door, deposit the mail on the counter and walk back out. I thought I'll just leave it in the mailbox. Something to look forward to when I come home. I skipped to the car and went on my way.

I came home and there was no mail in the mailbox. There was no mail on the kitchen counter. There was no mail to be found anywhere. The Pastor had come and gone.

Hmmmmm. What a mystery!

Perhaps the Pastor had spied the catalog in the mailbox, looked through it and something captured his eye right away! I must buy this for my beautiful bride! He was no doubt at the White House Black Market store.

So I waited. When the Pastor came home, he did NOT have a black and white shopping bag. I said where is my White House Black Market catalog?

My catalog - in the trash! In the trash! And not only was it in the trash, he had gone to great lengths to conceal it. He had put it in an envelope and put that inside of something else, you get the picture.

He claims the last time I received the White House Black Market catalog, it cost him a lot of money. This may be true, but did you SEE how good I looked in the black halter dress and wedges? Huh? I explained to the Pastor that even if I am completely unable to own anything from the September catalog, I also like to peruse for hair, makeup and general style ideas. There are valid reasons for looking at a catalog outside of intent to purchase.

I am in the Pastor's office blogging about his pilfering, his shanghai-ing, his filching of my White House Black Market catalog. We just had a discussion about what he actually did. I say he deceived me. He doesn't like that word and says that's not what he did. He didn't deceive me, he says, because when I asked him where it was he immediately told me it was in the trash and he actually took great joy in demonstrating how it had been intentionally concealed.

But I think we can all agree - how cute would I look in this?


speaks for itself Posted by Picasa

toes Posted by Picasa

in the classroom Posted by Picasa
the Pastor said to me... did you EVER think nine years ago you'd be sending your precious little baby to 4th grade with a mohawk???

First day of school! No bathrobe and fuzzy slippers for me!  Posted by Picasa

First day of school!  Posted by Picasa


clean, green, serene, pristine, routine and Nazarene

and the award goes to...
Me! For the world's longest mood swing. For the worst documented case
of pms.

The Pastor claims I was challenging to put up with for about 16 days.
But hey, he is a man of the cloth, so he can totally provide prayer,
peace and serenity during a small bout of insanity. The Pastor was
really sweet about it. He didn't say too much, but when I saw him
filling out that application to the Guiness Book of World Records for
the most hormonally inbalanced wife, I thought I'd better change my

Without fault, younger daughter has woken up every single morning before
6:30. I know this for a fact because she believes once she is awake
everyone else should be too. As someone who trained her child to leave
her alone in the mornings, I have had very un-Christian like feelings
when younger daughter has been up at daybreak singing and clapping.
Knock knock knock on our door. Can I put on your green eyeshadow play
with this watch a movie put on this shirt have a granola bar? Huh huh
huh????? Of course you can have a granola bar! You never have to ask me
if you can have a granola bar! Come and wake me up when you're thinking
about doing something really bad like smoking crack or wearing a
two-piece swimsuit.

I had a point. Today was the first day of school, and now that we need
to get into a routine, did younger daughter wake up??? Nooooooooo! How
IS that possible?

I must say I am now completely elated at the concept of children going
back to school. At first I wasn't. I had felt panicky. Much like
right after I had Nate and I realized I was going to be at home alone
with an almost premature and slightly jaundiced infant, I'd never
changed a poopy diaper, my boobs were full of milk and my body was full
of post-partum hormones. Oh and I was stranded at home because there
was ice and snow on the ground. I started to feel like that again when I
was thinking about the kids and the Pastor starting the school year.
But just literally in the last few days I have become excited about
having the time and the opportunity to do things while kiddos are in

My mom is in the hospital. I was sad to learn that when she gets out I
won't be getting a new little brother or sister, but she did get a jazzy
new knee so good for her. Nathan asked if the knee had come from a dead
person who had donated their organs. Uhhhhhh, nope.

The Pastor got a clergy collar shirt (see photo below). I already got
into trouble over it because he needed to wear his shirt to make a
jailhouse visit, and I had thrown away the white plastic piece that is
actually the collar. How was I to know? I was trying to be Tidy-Up
Barbie and the thing looked like a piece of trash to me. So we had to
go buy a pack of replacement collars right away. Again, how was I to
know? Its not like I've ever had these things laying around before.
Normal husbands would be upset over the sports page getting tossed
before they've had a chance to read it, or a wife misplacing a sleeve of
golf balls or something. But clergy collars?

But these things don't make sense to me. Kind of like when I first
started dating the Pastor and he lost his "Preaching Bible". He went on
and on about this bible and I just envisioned a dog-eared, marked-up
thing. When we finally found it, I could not believe that the Preaching
Bible was in fact pristine and without a mark in it.

Anywho, the Pastor said if he had to give away all of his clothes but
one thing he would keep the cleric collar shirt. Naturally, this
decision for me would be akin to "Sophie's Choice". The Pastor would
probably vote for me to keep the "Bossy Beyond Belief" shirt he just
bought me.

The Pastor is a complete shop-a-holic when it comes to Goodwill. Today
I threatened to take away his 10% off preferred shopper discount card
(true story). Granted, it is one of his only vices besides Mountain Dew
and since he is so handsome I will let him get away with a lot, but I am
trying to figure out what to do with some of the clothes and shoes he
has bought the girls. I guess the good news is that when we go on a
mission trip in December we will have plenty of clothing to take with us
to leave behind.

I will be spending considerable time over the next few days getting the
Parsonage all spruced up for a bunch of Nazarenes who will be invading
our house this Sunday. Because there's no way we can properly reflect
the Kingdom of God with a messy house, right? I should probably get a
new outfit too.

Maybe that award should be for the most random blog entry ever.


Barbie tee! And check out the shoes! Posted by Picasa

the Pastor and the little minx from the German restaurant

You better watch it Loretta! She said to the Pastor "you can just push me around, wherever you want!" I bet she'd like that! Posted by Picasa

first come the tattoos... then the next thing you know we'll be on the back of a couple of Harleys!  Posted by Picasa

Holy smokes this is one hot Pastor! Posted by Picasa


bask weg von hussy

Welcome to Robyn's world. Home of the world's largest zit. How is that
possible? This is SO not fair. I mean it's not like I'm twelve and
I've worried myself into a frenzy if the other kids in 7th grade are
going to like me.

Last night was transition night for some of these kids. Meaning they
were at their other parent's house and then came over here.
De-programming can be challenging.

Dinner time seems to be an endless source of frustration for me.
Younger daughter has been nick-named "spring-bottom" at the dinner table
due to her inability to sit on her own bottom during dinner. We work
and work and work on table manners, and they come home after eating off
of trays in front of the t.v. for a solid week and it is clearly evident
that no one besides me and the Pastor cares if kids eat sitting on their
knees and chew with their mouths open and talk with their mouths full.

I temped again yesterday!!!! So I made over one hundred dollars this
week. Plus I think it made me appreciate NOT working so much I will do
whatever the Pastor tells me... even if that means staying away from the
VN Nails and Target and Starbucks and and and... It did feel good to be
a mindless robot and just do a job with virtually no reponsibility. I
answered the phone and I did data entry. And the very best thing about
temping is that NO ONE tries to engage you in conversation. You are a
non-person in the office and there is no pressure to form any sort of
relationships with people.

We went to eat at a German restaurant today. This hussy was totally
moving in on my man.
And I have the pictures to prove it.

Its been an exciting Saturday for us. We went to an estate sale and I
bought a whole bunch of chunky chockers and necklaces that formerly
belonged to an old lady who no longer needs them because she is dead.
Scarves for ten cents. Then we went to the Goodwil store because all
the clothes were 50% off. One of my finds was a brand new skirt from
The Limited that was a buck. It had been $48!!!

I have odd tastes in clothes and stuff... if it is appropriate for a 12
year old, or used to belong to an 80 year old woman, then I am all over

School starts this week. Sometimes I say things to the Pastor and he
forgets what I've said. But he SURE DOES remember that I said I
couldn't be one of those mommies who just roll out of bed to take the
kiddos to school. He was reminding me of this yesterday as I was
getting dressed for my temp job and was rushing to be out the door by
8:35 a.m. Must develop plan of action to get myself and small children
around in the mornings. And I don't even have my first day of school
outfit picked out yet.

I have never dealt well with trauma in the mornings. First of all, I
like it quiet and dark. People should act as though they are at a
library. Not how people act in the library today, but how people
whispered 20 years ago. I also don't deal well with wet hair or
clothing dramas. Nate and I have always been pretty good about laying
out our clothes in our "outfit center". It should be interesting to get
two additional people - girls - around in the morning.

There's still some Saturday left. I'm off to the mall.


he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear

I temped today! No, I wasn't TEMPTED, I TEMPED.

Had I mentioned I signed up with a temp agency? When I was big-shot
manager lady, a temp agency provided me with staff. So after I returned
from my summer travels, I called my contact at the temp agency and told
her I would be interested in a temp job now and then after I got the
kiddos in school.

Well, school hasn't started but the temp agency kept calling, so I
agreed to do a job today. The office only wanted someone to answer the
phone for an hour during a meeting, but the temp agency said they only
send temps out for four hour minimums.

In the end, I answered the phone for an hour (7 calls, whew!). Then the
boss guy said he had a project he'd like for me to work on but he wasn't
ready for me yet. He directed me to the break room. I sat there for 45
minutes, waited and read my library book (they let you read books for
free!) before he came in and told me the project was not going to happen
today and sent me home. Score... I still got paid for four hours!!!

Later in the day, the company called the temp agency and acted like it
was just the GREATEST THING EVER that I could answer the phone AND
record messages by hand AND look up stuff on the computer, so they asked
me to come back tomorrow and make some sort of spreadsheet.

The temp job paid $9 an hour, and I stopped and bought my cup of coffee
on the way and I did spend more time getting dressed up to play office
than I actually spent working. And tomorrow I get to make a
spreadsheet!!! This isn't work, it's fun!

The Pastor made fun of me yesterday. My days have been kind of lost
since I quit full-time work and I have become discombobulated.
Yesterday, I was bragging that I'd had a productive day because I'd made
a couple of phone calls and set up a couple of appointments. The Pastor
commended me on all I had been able to accomplish by 5:00 p.m.

date night with the Pastor
Tonight the Pastor and I contemplated going to see this Jewish-Palestine
film at the Art Museum. In the end, we decided to pass on the movie and
its $7 tickets. We had gone to the gym and walked and we were tired.
Plus I had put in like an hour at the office. But we were still going
to go to our favorite mexican restaurant. We went to run some errands
and on the way to eat decided we were too tired for the sit-down
restaurant thing tonight and we'd just grab some fast-food mexican. We
headed home and encountered a man at a stop-light holding up a sign that
said he was hungry. The Pastor asked him if he'd had any food today and
he said no. The Pastor asked him what he wanted and he said just a loaf
of bread and some bologna. The Pastor and I went to a grocery store and
bought some groceries and took them back to the guy. He was so thankful
and happy. The guy walked away from the corner he was standing on and
went to eat.

The money we spent on our fast-food dinner and groceries was still less
than what dinner at our favorite mexican restaurant would have cost.

Ok, awkward. Now it seems like there is not going to be an upbeat way
to end this.

Oh, and the library has magazines you can read for free too!


Sky High

suffering from post-employment depression. I also seem to be going
through some post-marital, learning how to be a step-mother transitional
thingy. The Pastor just thinks I am nuts.

Every actual conversation at the Parsonage this past week has gone
something like this:

Me: sniff sniff sniff waaaaaaa boo hoo boo hoo waaaaaaaa sniff sniff
sniff waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa

The Pastor: Why are you crying?????

Me: sniff sniff waaaaaaaaaaa

One day, I was enjoying a rare kid-free block of time and treated myself
to a pedicure. The Pastor very gently pointed out to me that a pedicure
was 5% of the total amount of one of the categories in our budget. Uh
oh. And I very gently pointed out to the Pastor that I had ONLY gotten
a pedicure and had not indulged in a manicure too. Hellllllo! The
Pastor is trying to help, he went out and bought me a new foot spa (I
had one before and wore it out) and a paraffin wax machine. Nathan
seems to enjoy dipping his hands in the wax.

So one of the days when we were having one of our conversations (see
above), the Pastor said "just go do what you want!!!... go do something
that makes you happy!"

To which I explained to my Pastor that when I go do something that makes
ME happy I go get a pedicure or a manicure or a facial or even a bikini
wax or shop or go to Starbucks and hang out and drink pricey coffee
beverages or go to a movie! AND I HAVE NEVER MADE CORNED BEEF IN A
what makes me happy and is free!!!!! In my world, fun costs about $30.
I am trying to figure this out. I am having to redefine how I spend my
free time and what it is that I like to do, again, that is free!!!

While I am trying to figure this out, I have been hanging around with
the kids, who are not always appreciative and thankful for the things a
step-mother does. For instance, the other day I made younger daughter a
giant soft pretzel with cinnamon and sugar. The younger daughter in the
past has enjoyed cinnamon sugar and has had no known aversion to
cinnamon sugar. She asked what was on the pretzel and I told her.
Right away she said she just wanted a pretzel with salt and didn't think
she was going to like the cinnamon sugar one. She tried a bite and you
could just TELL she thought it was delicious. But, she was not about to
admit it! So one of the things I have spent the most time doing,
cooking, someone complains about at every single eating opportunity.
And I am just a wee bit (vast understatement) sensitive about such
things right now.

I guess I could hang out with a friend...hmmmm, let me give someone a
call! Oh, but they all work! I'm sure they would be hugely sympathetic
about me not working and not knowing what to do.

I also feel incredibly disorganized about my calendar and to-do lists as
I don't have a real computer with internet access unless I go to the
Pastor's office. I've never NOT had a computer to organize my life. I
don't know that the Pastor gets how radically different my life is. He
is so sweet about allowing me to quit my job and have all this free
time, and doesn't understand that it's not that I'm not thankful and
it's not that I don't want to be at home. I just don't know what to

So what's a girl to do? For now, I am at the movies. The problem has
been solved, for at least two hours. Hey, we are all just trying to
find our way.


a rare moment with small animals Posted by Picasa


no sugar added

Older daughter has food issues at dinner every night. It's usually over
something green in the vegetable variety. She is trying really hard to
be finicky.

One of my rules at the dinner table is NO COMMENTARY. You are not
allowed to say, especially in a whiny voice:

"I don't like that!"
"I don't want that!"
Or any variation on that theme.

One of the reasons for this is that if I just cooked it, I think the
least everyone else can do is not complain about it, and especially not
start complaining about it before they even try it.
The second reason is that I had noticed what happens is one child starts
with the whiny I don't like that!!! and the other kids are listening and
you can see the wheels start turning. They start to think something
like "I know I've always liked green beans in the past, but if he/she
doesn't like them then maybe I shouldn't like them either!!!!"

A couple of weeks ago we were having spinach salad with raspberry
vinaigrette dressing. Older daughter was practically inhaling it until
someone said the word spinach. Then she stopped eating it cold. Then
there was a similar incident with spinach artichoke dip. I guess I
probably am the wicked step mom cooking all this green leafy food.

Older daughter has taken a fancy to begin investigative action when I
start to cook. She starts reading labels and boxes and asking questions
during the food prep process.

For instance, tonight she came in when I was cooking and said what's
that??? to the pan of okra on the stove. I told her okra and she said
hmmmm - using a tone of voice that really meant I'm saying hmmmm like
it's delicious but I am really going to try to find a way not to eat

She went on her merry way and I told the Pastor yep, the okra is going
to be a problem.

Little does older daughter know, but I have had food aversions, issues
and borderline eating disorders FOR YEARS. She is dealing with an
expert! There are, like five things I will eat! I routinely don't eat
breakfast and lunch to avoid hundreds of calories. I don't eat fish
sticks and I haven't since I read "How to Eat Fried Worms" and I don't
eat spaghetti or angel hair pasta due to its resemblance to worms. I
don't eat eggs because they are aborted baby chickens that come out of a
momma chickens hoo-ha. And believe me, I could just go on and on.

Anywho, the Pastor and the kids sit down at the table and before I can
sit down she is trying to find secret code words in order to tell her
dad she doesn't like it. She put hardly any okra on her plate. She
said is that enough Robyn? And I said nope. So she took a bit more and
you could just tell she didn't want to eat it. She was pushing it
around her plate. The Pastor and the daughter had about 42
conversations about the okra, but in the end she ate it (emptying her
glass twice in the process of washing down the okra).

Turns out later the Pastor told me as soon as she saw the okra cooking
she was hunting him down, begging him to let her skip the okra.

Later in the evening, I had to show her how one poses for pictures. But
then she kicked her friend who lives across the street and lied about
it, so she had to go to bed. Younger daughter and I stayed up and I put
makeup on her and we ate cheesecake. I will eat that.