Sunday, August 29, 2010

Special Plate

All of my nieces have birthdays within a few weeks of each other. The two sisters always get the same thing from me. I don't mean I give them the same thing every year, but the two of them always get the same thing as each other from me every year, so I feel bad for the younger one, who's birthday is second, because she always knows what she's getting. One of these years I'll have to be more creative and give her something unexpected. This year I'm mega poor due to too much vacationing and some long planned house repairs, (more on that later,) so I decided that homemade was best. I had a gift certificate to the local paint your own pottery place, so my lovely nieces are getting hand painted plates from their favorite auntie. I went to take photos, got it set up, snapped one photo and my camera battery died, so here is the one and only photo of the "special plate". Not bad, if I do say so myself. Sister #2 gets a blue one :)

Thursday, August 12, 2010


The Medford conference was a total bust. It was exactly as dismal as I expected it to be... actually, not true, it was more dismal than I expected. I know in large part you get out what you put in, you find what you're looking for, etc. but in some cases things really do genuinely suck, and I believe this was one of those things. When I arrived there were around 30 people there, 3 of whom were male. 2 of those 3 men were over 60. The one young man was in a wheelchair and looked about 12 years old. The worst part of these events isn't the ratio of men to women, or the small number of attendees. It's the aura of depression and desperation that surrounds the whole affair. The people look as though they've never seen the sun, don't believe in love and expect the worst to happen at any moment. I only stayed about an hour and a half and it was so hideous I couldn't make myself go back the next day.
Conversely, the Festival was AWESOME as always. I saw 3 plays, all of which were superb. It made me miss my days on the stage :) My favorite was the musical, She Loves Me. It was everything the conference was not, bright, vibrant, energetic. Granted, it was fiction, but I remember thinking as I was watching that it would not be possible to be unhappy watching that show. It was perfect, 10 out of 10. If only real life were so effervescent.
This is the Elizabethan Theater where I saw The Merchant of Venice. The photos were taken with my phone, so sorry for the suckiness, but you get the idea :) It was absolutely perfect weather for outdoor theater, warm and breezy. I'd never seen The Merchant of Venice before, but I read it a few days before I left, wanting to be prepared. I'm inclined to think Shylock gets a bad rap. I'm not saying I condone his actions or lifestyle, but I can understand why he does what he does, and Antonio is a bigoted douche. I'm just saying.

Sunday, August 1, 2010


I actually attended almost every minute of that conference. Aren't you proud of me? And I had a great time. Everyone was very friendly and the talks and workshops were great. There was one in particular that I've been thinking about ever since. It was the sunday fireside. The speaker was a former mission president in the Louisiana mission. He was raised Baptist, so he was a very dynamic speaker, loud and animated, like he expected an AMEN from the congregation occasionally. He even thumped the pulpit a few times :) His topic was living more with the Lord than with the world. I can't tell you any of the stories he told or examples he used, but since then, as I go through my day and find myself spending time on the computer or watching tv, I find myself thinking more often that I could be spending that time with the Lord instead of in the world. And that doesn't mean that I read my scriptures 24/7 and never turn on the tv again. But where are my influences coming from? What voices am I listening to? It stands to reason that the voices I surround myself with most often would be the voices I would eventually heed. Why then wouldn't I want to make sure that the voice of my Father who loves me is uppermost? Quantity counts, apparently :) So I'm making an effort to listen to better music, watch less tv, read more uplifting things, have righteous companions. Not that I wasn't doing those things before, but it was a good reminder.

I'm going to another conference this coming week. This one is in Medford. It's not a mid-singles event, but includes all single adults, so I expect the average age to be 60, particularly as there is another mid-singles conference going on the same weekend in Hood River where all the mids will undoubtedly be. I thought about going to that one, but hotels there were mostly booked and the only ones left were mega expensive. I could get 5 nights in Medford for the same price as 2 in Hood River. Also, Medford is 17 miles from Ashland, home of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. YEAH! I've really been wanting to go this summer. They are staging Pride and Prejudice, which, come on. I have to see it. So I am killing two birds with one stone, (I hate that phrase. There needs to be a new idiom for that concept. Poor birds) and going to the geriatric conference and seeing some great theater, all for less than I would have spent on 2 nights in Hood River. Plus Gab lives between here and there, so I get to see her too :) What could be better?