Sunday, December 27, 2009

Mary, or Well behaved women...

I wonder, when I get to heaven, if I'll get to meet Mary? You know who I Cher, only a first name is necessary...on second thought, NOTHING like Cher. I wonder if I'll recongnize her? My Catholic friends are probobally looking at me like I've lost my mind, "of course you'll recognize her, you know, the Lady with the big halo." I'm resisting the urge to be playful with that last's a more serious post. I imagine meeting Mary in an undramatic sort of way. Walking down a dirt path by a river at morning. A pleasant day with birds singing in the mornings song. We're in heaven. A woman approaches, she's pretty - not striking, but there's something about her that's too glaring not to notice. We sit together on a bench and begin to talk. She's humble, soft with her words and beautiful...I now see it. And then in a split second I know it's's Mary. "What was it like? I mean, what things did you treasure in your heart that night?" To my surprise she begins to talk...she shares all the things that night the Savior was born...The angel, the angelic chorus, the shepards, the delivery... I say nothing as she answers every question I have - though I never ask a single one. Then she stands and she walks away, leaving me with a Jewish blessing as she goes...

There's so much about Mary. Depending on your denomination I guess she ranges from Queen of Heaven to "just a woman." You can read about her words spoken in the bible, her position - or lack of position. But for me, it's intriguing to stop for a moment to just ponder in my heart who "she" was. A very young woman with a beautiful heart who has served and loved God from her earliest days. A thoughtful and contimplative woman. Listening more than speaking. Humble. Obedient and willing to do whatever her Lord requires of her. And this...this was a pretty big deal! An angel appears and tells her she's about to be pregnant. She travels while "great with child." The manger. The angel again. The angelic choir. The shepards...and all the while Mary simply treasures these things, and ponders them in her heart. That's what I wanted to know...what were those things she pondered?

In Seneca Falls, NY - two miles from my home, there's a sign. "Well behaved women seldom make history." They might be wrong. Merry Christmas...

Monday, December 14, 2009

Ring bell for outstanding service

The sign might be a little tough to read given the poor camera on my phone, but this one was too good not to post. I'll try and get back with a real camera. Unfortunately, this bell is only good for the local store, if you want to let Arby's Corporate know, you have to dial 911. I wonder if they'll help you post bail?

Mary did you know

There's a great song they play this time of year...a Christmas song. Mary did you know. My oldest daughter is singing it as I write. She has a beautiful voice. The song is profound if you pause and really think about. "Mary did you know...the child you delivered will soon deliver you?" She couldn't possibly know. She couldn't possibly understand how the ancient scriptures would be revealed. She couldn't fully predict that in just 33 years from her pondering, that He, her tiny baby, would bear the sins of the world.

I know Kenny Rodgers has overdramatized the song, and everybody in the world sings it these days. But the next time you hear 'Mary did you know,' pause and reflect... "Mary, when you kissed your baby's face you kissed the face of God." Prepare your heart for a Mary, I mean Merry, Christmas.

Breakfast Losers

That's G to the right. E is to the left out of camera range. And me, I'm beside G. We don't know those guys across the room, which is OK, this blog is not about them...or us. We are definitely not breakfast losers! But we are breakfast goers many Saturday mornings. We know who has the best pancakes, who put's onions on the plate and the difference between homefries and hash browns.
It's hard to see, but there are three empty chairs at the end of our overlength table. The waitress, who we know well, asked, "would you mind if a couple joins you?" We were thrilled. We always welcome company. To steal my middle daughters words, "a stranger is just a friend we haven't met yet." She was willing (the wife), but he (the breakfast loser) decided to sit at the bar instead. "Are you sure," she said? He said nothing, but just sat. We were disappointed, but not that disappointed...we're good company, even if it's just ourselves! Withing a few minutes we paid the bill and walked out, whispering under our breaths as we passed, "Breakfast Losers!"

Friday, December 11, 2009

Master Chef

Thanksgiving is a time for friends or family, and of course FOOD! Thankfully, this year for us was no exception. But this year was an exception. Typically we go to some family members house, hang out and make small talk, eat and then discuss the wine labels...last year it was "Running with Scissors." For me now, it's a toss up between which is cooler - "Running with Scissors" or "Mad Housewife Cabernet," but now I digress! This year we went somewhere truly special.

This year we were in the presence of a celebrity. A master chef. I watched in awe - that is - we watched in awe as he prepared masterpiece after masterpiece, each better than the last. Yams and sweet potatoes with pixie dust. Real cranberry relish with habenjaro peppers, oh my! Real NY maple syrup poured into something, and a turkey to die for. And when he was done...when the flury of whipping and stirring and roasting was complete, we stood in awe as if a great tornado has just passed, and delivered before us a priceless gift in return. The show was amazing. The food was fabulous. And was great.

You may think of him as Mr. Button, VP of something for Macy's. You may stand amazed to learn that the clown chief for the parade is under his care. But to me, he's much more than these. He's even more than brother. He will forever be, Jeff the Chef!