It’s been a while…Here’s why.

Hi friends.

It has been a long while since I posted here.

I hadn’t anticipated taking such a long sabbatical, but after a busy work season this past spring, I needed a break. More than that, I needed some quiet.

The truth is, it’s getting awfully loud around here. And when I say, “around here,” I mean the worldwide web.

It makes me weary.

It’s like a traffic jam in hot weather…horns are honking and drivers are jockeying for position.

I’m weary of the competition and one upsmanship.
I’m weary of the bullying.
I’m tired of the barrage of promotions.
I’m sick of the rat-race that has overtaken the information super-highway.
(It requires too much merging. And anyone who knows me knows that highway merging makes me very, very nervous.)

Make no mistake…I love the internet! The convenience alone makes life so much better…I tried to explain to my kids how I used to do research. You remember…Reference books. Journals. Microfiche. (They stared blankly, as though I was recounting life in another millennium. Which, of course, it was.)

Because of Facebook, I’m in touch with “old friends” more often; those friendships aren’t punctuated only by Christmas cards and reunions. We’re all a little more connected. I love seeing vacation photos and celebrating birthdays, new jobs, graduations, touchdowns and lead roles.

I worry, though, that by being so connected, we’re getting a little disconnected. Our memories and experiences are boxed into pithy hashtags while our touch screens have gotten us decidedly out of touch with each other. Life has become a caricature of itself as we clamor for attention and laughs and time on the virtual soapbox.

My wise grandfather, for whom my son is named, greatly appreciated architecture, science and technology. If he were here, Papa Bill would likely marvel at the speed and efficiency of the internet, and he’d love the richness of the information. But he’d also urge moderation. And, most certainly, he’d invoke one of his favorite quotes from Shakespeare: “To thine own self be true.” A gentleman, my grandfather always maintained his integrity and stood firm in his beliefs, without humiliating or belittling others…without having to have the last word.

Those are good standards for merging into the worldwide web.mitziecar

I’m searching, I think, not for an internet super-highway, but rather, a virtual Route 66. Slower. Kinder. Friendlier.
Quieter.

And I want my vehicle here (my blog!) to be like my minivan…In real life, I drive a dented, 10 year-old minivan, with fraying upholstery, and a CD player that works…sometimes. But it’s comfortable and reliable, and it holds lots of people. It gets us safely from A to B.

I still have research to do, stories to tell and articles to write. As I do, I want to respect the other “drivers,” even though some might pass me by or even bump into me from time to time. I know I’ll make some mistakes, too. I might cut someone off or slow somebody down. If I do, I’ll try to apologize…or at least wave politely.  No one’s perfect…least of all, me. I’ll be prepared, though, and I will choose my route carefully and be sure my mind and heart are headed in the right direction.

It’s pretty unrealistic to think that the whole internet can suddenly become a safer, smoother, more genteel place. But I can certainly make THIS part of the internet better. I hope you’ll come with me…Hop in. Buckle your safety belt. Roll down the windows.

And don’t worry…if the CD player isn’t working…

We’ll sing.

 

 

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I saw love at the art museum

I went to the Cleveland Museum of Art last Saturday expecting to see the British Drawings exhibit.

But instead, I saw love.

{and, as it happens, I saw Batman as well.}

Tom and I decided to take advantage of a free day and venture to University Circle. It’s one of our favorite places in Cleveland, and a perfect destination on a crisp, sunny, spring afternoon. After a leisurely brunch, we traveled through the historic neighborhoods on Shaker and North Park, past Case Western Reserve and Severance Hall, landing a lucky parking spot right next to the art museum.

The hush of such a museum always fascinates me…there’s something about being in the presence of such beautiful and timeless works that evokes whispers. As we wandered through the galleries, we lingered by a contemporary sculpture, wondering what statement the artist could possibly be making…and giggling at our obvious lack of sophistication. I turned away to view another piece when Tom tugged at my elbow.

“Look,” he whispered. “There’s Batman.”

I glanced behind my shoulder, expecting to see another sculpture or or a painting of the famous character…instead, I saw a four year-old boy dressed up…from head to toe…as Batman: Shirt. Boots. Pants. Gloves. Headpiece. Mask. (and, of course…the cape.)

batmanchild

He walked quietly next to his mom, a young, slim woman who was fashionably dressed.

I smiled at them, imagining the conversation that might have occurred prior to their art-museum-field trip:

Mom: “We’re going to the art museum!”

Son: “But I don’t want to go to the art musuem!”

Mom: “Well, this is what we have planned for today.”

Son: “I’m NOT going.”
Mom: “You can wear your Batman suit…”

So, there they were, enjoying an afternoon date. “You have Batman with you today,” I remarked as they walked by.

The young woman smiled warmly, the unmistakable tone of sheer pride in her voice: “I sure do.”

Batman regarded me solemnly before scampering into the next room.

And off they went…Mother and Superhero.

Truly a work of art.

Click here to read about seeing love at the movies.

Photo cred: littleheartsbooks.com

It’s MAY(hem)

Hi everybody!
I’m sorry for my absence from the blogosphere! To be honest, the reason is April Showers…we’ve had a month-full of ministry opportunities, including some extra writing projects, two out-of-town-conferences, planning for more JAM Sessions, and some wonderful chances to chat with some VERY enthusiastic pastors and volunteers. So…my blog has taken a  back seat. However, the April Showers will hopefully be bearing lots of flowers (or, in Biblical terms, fruit!) So excited to share new ideas and materials with you in the coming weeks and months.

The other reason is that my computer has taken ill.  It’s making good progress, and we are seeing definite signs of improvement. However, my operating systems are toast, hence no pictures or graphics in this post. Sorry about that.

This month, I’m going to be welcoming you to my “Mother ‘hood.” I’ve gathered an amazing group of women who are raising exceptional children. Each of them is an encouragment to me and I’m a better mom (and a better person) for knowing them. I know they’ll enrich your ministry (and your parenting) as well.

I’ll also be updating you on some opportunities for training. We love to meet new friends when we’re on the road, and we will be traveling quite a bit over the next few months. AND…we’ve had some great fun during the past month. I’ll post pictures from some of our adventures and tell you what we learned.

As the title for this post indicates, May is, for me, the BUSIEST month of the year. It rivals Christmas time, I believe, with the intensity of schedules, end-of-school-year concerts and ceremonies, and  Memorial Day festivities. This week alone, our family has four concerts, a seminar, a service project, a missions meeting and youth group on the docket. See what I mean? May(hem). (I know it’s the same for you, too).

And…this year, we have a brand new set of responsibilities related to one very big word:
GRADUATION

In less than one month, we’ll be sitting in the stadium, listening to “Pomp and Circumstance” and watching Annie receive her diploma.

People ask me, “How are you handling this?”

Well…

I cry periodically, with no warning whatsoever.
I have a strange lump in my throat that can only be attributed to a mixture of pride and nostalgia.
I’m overwhelmed.
I’m overjoyed.
I’m overtired.

I’m thankful.

That about sums it up…for now.

This blog post has been a bit all-over-the-place. But I told you why…

It’s MAY(hem).

One day at a time, everybody.
Love,

Katie