Thursday, September 29, 2011

Getting Away

I'm still frustrated, and also now really tired, of the behavior of some people. I know I need to try to resolve some issues, and it's causing me some stress and I'm not looking forward to it. But in the meantime, I'm going away this weekend for a continuing education retreat. I'm really looking forward to it because some of my seminary friends will be there and we're going to spend time visiting different farms and other sites and discussing/learning about food production and how it relates to hunger/poverty. It's something that I already have an interest in and this will help me learn even more. And it will be a nice distraction for a few days. I wanted to post before I went since I won't be able to for a few days, and therefore this will be my last post for September. I clearly didn't post every day in September, but I did better than 50%, or about every other day, so I think that's pretty good considering I was lucky to post once a week before this month. I still plan to write more about my marathon experience, and I'll be sure to write about what I experience this weekend. For now, I'm off to the great outdoors!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Everything I Need To Know...

Sometimes people just make me crazy. I have a career/calling which requires that I interact with people a lot. Most of the time I don't mind. I do need my alone time every now and then, but generally I like being around people, learning their stories, building relationships, etc. Often I can just shake my head or let things go when I don't agree with people. But there are times when I just don't understand people. I believe in treating people well, in being polite, in using manners. Clearly I'm not perfect and I don't always treat people the way I should, but I try. And I know it's the right thing to do. I do not understand people who don't seem to care about another person's feelings. First, all human beings are connected. Second, if a person believes that we're all created and loved by God, then that gives us a responsibility to care about other people. So I REALLY don't understand "church people" who are rude or just downright mean to other people. Why can't we all just be respectful adults? There's that book or saying or something, "Everything I need to know I learned in Kindergarten." I think some adults, if they're going to act like children, should just go back to Kindergarten and re-learn their manners! I apologize for my rant, but I need to vent my frustrations.

Monday, September 26, 2011

#2 Is In The Books

I've been a little MIA from the blog lately (not too good for the posting every day - oops!), but it's because I was away at my parents' and aunt's houses, and focused on preparing for, and then recovering from, the Akron Marathon. I'll write more about it in another post later, but for now I just wanted to post that it went really well. My official time was 4:06:14, which was 14 minutes faster than I ran Philly last November, and 4 minutes faster than my goal time! YAY!

Monday, September 19, 2011

mmm Panera

I should've written this post a lot earlier in the day, because I had a longish meeting this evening and now it's late and I'm tired and don't feel like writing much. But I wanted to at least post something because I didn't yesterday. And I didn't yesterday because it was a long day. A pretty good day, but a long one. I started with the two Sunday morning worship services, then led a memorial service, then drove to Trenton for the Synod Ordination Service. (Four worship services total!) Ordination services are great to be part of because they remind me again why I do what I do, and its always exciting to be there to support other new pastors. I also got to have dinner with my friend Ray, and had a nice time catching up with him, and enjoying Panera, one of my favorite places. I really wish there was a Panera close by where I live. Anyone who has ever been to Panera with me only gets one guess what I had to eat!

Saturday, September 17, 2011


Today did not start out as I planned. I had planned to get up early as I've done just about every Saturday for the last few weeks and months and go for my "long" run. But as I was waking up I heard the wind blowing around a lot and decided to wait to go later in the day. So instead I started my day by watching some tv in bed, and then having some coffee and breakfast and doing some reading. Then, as I planned to do after my run, I worked on my sermons for tomorrow (the regular morning worship and a memorial service). I got my run in right before lunch, since I only did 8 miles today (not really very long compared to my other long runs, but I'm tapering back now for the marathon). Finished up my sermons and some stuff around the house in the afternoon, and then ran some errands at Target and Bed, Bath & Beyond (I heart Target!). I was seriously craving chocolate today, so I picked up a brownie mix. After I had dinner, I made the brownies, and then later had one with ice cream for dessert. Along with some wine. :) What a great to unwind at the end of the day.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Clean House

I had another fairly uneventful day off today, but I do feel like I accomplished quite a bit around the house. I finally tackled a few little projects that I've been meaning to do for a long time. I also gave the house a good cleaning, including finally sweeping out my garage, which I haven't done since I moved here. I know that none of these things are really that exciting, but I do feel very satisified when I accomplish tasks like these. I also got a nice run in: I wasn't sore from yesterday's Body Pump class, the weather was perfect, and I was pleased to find out afterward that my pace was faster than I thought even though I didn't feel like I was pushing it. My marathon is a week from tomorrow, so I'm really hoping these good running feelings stick around for a while. I also did some reading today (working on "The Help", pretty good so far), watched a few episodes of Grey's Anatomy, and came up with an idea for something I might try next month. I know I've missed a few days of posting this month, but I feel like I've done better that I thought I would. And half the month is over already!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Girl Power

I am part of a group of women clergy (mostly Lutheran) in NJ who get together usually about once a month, except during the summer time. So today was the first time we had met since May and it was so good to get together and see the other ladies again. It reminded me that I am so thankful for this group. As we listened to one woman who is going through a difficult time right now, I was reminded of how much this group helped me when I was struggling earlier in the year. We are in different places on our life and ministry journeys: where we live, our ages, our health, our living and family situations, our ministry experience, all of these things bring variety to the group, but yet we still can listen and support and laugh and comfort and pray. We share the fact that we are all women in ministry, which is not always an easy thing to be. Some days I don't want to be (in ministry). But this group helps remind me why I am.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Busy Days and Book Club

This week has been full with ministry, running and working out, and errands. I don't have much to write about today, I've been going all day and I'd rather spend the rest of the night relaxing and reading. I wanted to post something though since I've missed a couple days lately. I didn't post yesterday because I was having problems with my wireless internet connection... problems that I've been having most of the 14 months I've lived here. Verizon FINALLY sent a technician out today and he actually ordered us a new modem (which I'm pretty sure we deserved a year ago)! I hope this solves the problem.
On an exciting note, I've been talking with some women about starting a book club in the area and today we set a date for our first meeting next month, and picked "The Help" as our first book. Since it's so popular right now because of the movie we thought it'd be a good one to start with. Hopefully everyone can find a copy!

Monday, September 12, 2011

New (Pink) Kicks

One of my other purchases of the past few days was two new pairs of running shoes. The general recommendation for running shoes is that they should be retired after 500 miles. The website I use to keep track of my runs allows me to enter the shoes I use for each run and therefore keeps track of their mileage. I'm around 450 on both pairs of shoes I currently use, and less than two weeks away from my marathon now, so it was time. I want to use one of the new pairs for the race, but I need to break them in a little first. I've run in Saucony brand shoes for several years now and have been pretty happy with them, so I bought one pair of Saucony ProGrid Guides and decided to try something new for the other pair. With the assistance of the salesperson at the running store, I went with Asics Gel-Kayanos for the other pair. The unfortunate fact of both of these pairs is that they're pink. And there were no other color options. I am not a big fan of pink. The 2 pairs of Sauconys I'm running in now are blue, which is my favorite color. I even tried on another pair that were also pink. Apparently pink is the color for this year's shoe models. At least they're only really accented by the pink and are primarily white and gray/silver. I took a little jog around the store in both of my new pairs of shoes, but I'm looking forward to trying them out for real.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Books, Books, Books! (and my 100th post)

I have made several exciting purchases in the last few days, the most (in quantity) being books! First, I received a package of six books from Alban Institute publishing company. This organization exists primarily (in my understanding) for support and continuing education for clergy. When I realized I was nowhere near spending the amount I am allotted each year by the congregation for books, I went to their online store. I kept finding more and more books I thought would be helpful, so at some point I had to stop myself. I chose ones on a variety of congregational and clergy issues, and I think they'll all be useful. Yesterday the local library was having a book sale so I stopped by and picked up four more books (but for only $3.25!). And today, I met my friend Elizabeth for dinner and then stopped at Borders for their going-out-of-business-sale. I had a hard time limiting myself again. I think at one point I was holding nine or ten books, but I narrowed it down to four (all, ironically, from the "religion" section). These were all 70% off, so while I spent about $22 on these four books, I saved about a total of $48 off their original prices! Besides the fact that I'm a pastor, I think it probably says something about me that all but one of these fourteen books are faith related. The other one is a book on quilting. I think I need to make some room on my bookshelves! :)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Third Time's a Charm

Today I tried a Body Pump class for the third time (second time at my gym), and I decided I like it. I wasn't sure before, probably because strength-training has never been my favorite thing to do. But I need to do it, and I get bored doing the same machines at the gym all the time. Body Pump provides a nice challenge and opportunity to change things up with my strength routine. And I do like the whole "community" aspect of a class, a group of people struggling and growing together, encouraged by the leader. Even though I was tired pretty much all day today (no idea why) I actually felt better after the class, and still had energy to get in a run.

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Coffee Break

Today was a pretty normal day. I did a lot of work in the office, and had meetings for both a wedding and a funeral (memorial service). Is that ironic, or just part of "the job"? It was a fairly full day, but I appreciate those sometimes because it usually means the day goes fast. In the middle of the day, I stopped by my local coffee shop, which is conveniently about a block from my house. It was nice to get some of their tasty house roast and sit on a bench outside the shop for a few minutes and just take a break. Sometimes it's the simple things that make the day better.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

GG Makes it All Better

Today was a little hard because I had to do the funeral for the church member who passed away last week. I was feeling lots of different things, which is not unusual. But after a long morning and afternoon of preparing, presiding, and lunching, I needed to do some relaxing. It rained practically all day today, so it was a good day to come home and snuggle up on the couch and watch some Gilmore Girls. It definitely made me feel better, although I didn't get a whole lot done the rest of the day, I felt ok with that since I already had a pretty full day, especially emotionally. This was the second day in a row I didn't feel like running. That happens every now and then. And while I was able to get myself out the door yesterday, it just didn't happen today. It's not something I want to get in the habit of doing, but I'm not going to beat myself up about it because missing one day every now and then isn't really going to impact my training. And now to bed, so I can get my butt moving tomorrow!

Monday, September 5, 2011

And So Begins the Evacuation

About a week and a half ago, with the threat of Hurricane Irene looming, a mandatory evacuation order just about emptied the island (there were a few brave -or crazy - people who stayed). Today was the unofficial end-of-summer evacuation. While there will still be some who come down to their summer homes on the weekends through September and maybe even October, and the snow birds who don't fly south until winter, Labor Day marks the time for many when they close up their island homes and head back to work and school in north Jersey, New York, or Philly. Many businesses will remain open, with more limited hours, through the fall, but some (like the market up the street) are strictly Memorial Day to Labor Day. I'm sure I'll have more to say about this in another post, but for now my bed is calling me, and I wanted to be sure to post something today since I did miss yesterday. (But hey, 4 out of 5 days isn't bad!)

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Twenty. Miles.

Today I ran 20 miles. Isn't that enough? Really? Did I have to do anything else today?
Ok, I did a few other things, but nothing really extraordinary besides the running 20 miles. This was my last really long run before my marathon in three weeks. It was encouraging that I felt pretty good for most of it after having a pretty crappy long run last weekend. I'm grateful that I've been able to do several of my long runs with my friend Mindy. It definitely makes the time and miles seem to go faster when you have a friend to talk with. I'm a little concerned that I won't have a friend to run with at the marathon, but I think I'm just going to try staying with a pace group, so that should help. It will also help that I will have some family there cheering me on!

Friday, September 2, 2011


This was one of those Fridays (my regular "day off") that I spent mostly doing pretty boring stuff around the house like cleaning, because it was one of those crazy weeks where I let all of that stuff go until today. I interspersed some fun things into my day to help me get through my to-do list: I watched a few episodes of Gilmore Girls (from seasons 3 and 4), read a little, spent about an hour and a half on the beach, and baked some cranberry-orange bread and (homemade) granola.
I finished my latest book before going to bed last night: "Does the Noise in my Head Bother You?"- Steven Tyler's memoir. It was... interesting. Aerosmith is one of my all-time favorite bands, in the top 3. I learned a lot about the band and it's members, and learned that Steven Tyler is probably a musical genius. I also learned that's he's probably more than a little crazy, and learned way more about the drugs they did than I ever needed to know. If you like biographies and/or rock bands you would probably like this book, but be warned that it would probably have the equivalent of an "R" rating for a movie: there's a lot of harsh language and I found some of his comments offensive.
Now I'm close to finishing another book (fiction) that I had actually started before, but had to put aside when I got Steven Tyler's book from the library. I plan to read a bit more tonight and go to bed early, so I can get up early for a long run in the morning.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

30 Days

It's the beginning of a new month, I always have intentions of blogging more often than I do, and I know a fellow LTSP alum who uses her blog to attempt things for 30 days. These are the reasons I have decided to attempt to blog every day for the 30 days of September. I'm honestly not sure how likely I am to accomplish this goal, but it can't hurt to try, right?
Today was a pretty rough day. One of my parishioners passed away today. He was 91 years old and lived a good long life and I have hope in the resurrection and his health was basically failing for the few weeks, so on the one hand, it's probably a blessing. On the other hand, he was a wonderful man who was loved by the community and the congregation and I had formed a good relationship with him over the past year. He will definitely be missed.
I was also looking forward to a visit from my cousin's family this weekend, and she told me today that they're not going to be able to come now, so that bummed me out even more. They're going to try to come another weekend instead, so I hope we can work that out.
On a positive note, I tried a new class at the gym today! One of my friends in Bville talked me into going to her "Body Pump" class at the YMCA the last time I was home, and it kicked my butt, but I appreciated the challenge. I try to weight-lift/strength train twice a week, and sometimes I get bored doing the same routine all the time, so I decided to try the class at my gym. I'm sore, but in a good way, if that makes sense. And I still had enough energy to go for a run afterward. And then I rewarded myself with a milkshake. ;)