Friday, October 29, 2004

Halloween 2004

There is a great story to go with these pictures. I'll tell it in the morning!

To trick or to treat?

Ariel and Captain Feather Sword 2003

Tink and Peter Pan 2002

Dorthy and Toto 2001

One of my favorite things to do each year is dress my kids up and get their picture together. This year Kolby is a cheer leader and Rhett is a Dallas Cowboy Football player. ( Picture to follow as soon as i take one!) I love this time of year!

This post started out as a comment on Brandon's blog. It became so long I decided to post it here.

Brandon said "It completely makes sense to me why people don't want to "celebrate" a holiday that was marked for evil purposes. However, sometimes I think our closed doors and humbug attitudes can send a message that can be misinterpreted. (Don't bother us, we're religious. We don't care for you. You're less than--because you're trick-or treating. God is exclusive and you're out)"

I said : I totally agree about the trick-or-treating. We have kids from other neighborhoods (across the bridge and in the ehh not so good part of town) come and trick or treat on our street. One of our neighbors (who also goes to our church)was being really negative about this. She said her light would be off and her door closed but if we wanted to bring our kids she would love to give candy to those who "belonged on our street." Made me think.. What would Jesus do?

At our house there are no tricks, just treats. We do not hide. We put orange and black streamers in our trees and turn on our porch lights as well as the flood lights and every light in the front of the house. We try to talk to each and every trick or treater and give good candy. I thought about printing up some little cards to hand out that say "Thank you for stopping by our home" or something ... but I haven't figured that all out. I just don't want to be a scrooge.

I don't know what Jesus would do, but I can't imagine that he would sit behind a dark door letting all the kids pass him by. One night a year I will give candy to anyone who comes to our door, no matter where they are from or what they look like. All will be met with a cheerful smile and a generous amount of sugar and chocolate!

What do you guys think?

Wednesday, October 27, 2004


Ok. This morning I tried really hard to blog. But alas, every time I tried to go to anything blogger, I got an error message. I thought blogger was down. At noon I tried again. Still no blog, but I had e-mails from comments on my blog, so I knew blogger was not down. I still don't know why, but my computer gives me an eror message everytime I try to go to any blog/blogger site. Weird. I am at my Mom and Dad's house right now. It is past my bedtime and I have to go home. I will try again . . . for tomorrow is another day! (Insert my best Scarlett wrist on forehead drama queen sigh.) Good night sweet blog land.

Tuesday, October 26, 2004

He did it!

Just thought everyone in blog world needed to know that Rhett wore big boy undies all day with no accidents!
(insert Hallelujah Chorus)
He went to school. We ran errands. He played accidents! YEAH! I know it may not last, but it is a break through!!! We're doing the happy dance in Hewitt, Texas! Now we're going to the Potty, Potty! YE-HAW!


Sorry I have not been my blogging self lately. Much is going on in the Grosz household. Not the exciting or insightful type stuff, just the "family of four trying to get where we need to go, do what we need to do, and be who we need to be" type things.
I heard a line in a movie this weekend that reminded me of blog world. . .

Communication of this nature lends itself to being more about nothing than something. But I have to say that all these nothings have meant more to me than a lot of somethings, and for that I thank you. Kathleen Kelly~ You've Got Mail

Have you ever noticed that TBS can take a two hour movie and make it last four hours? AND for some reason, I still watch. Even if I have seen the movie a dozen times. Even if I have a 100 other things I should be doing. I find myself watching. This weekend TBS stretched You've Got Mail to Ghandi length. I watched it for the umteenth time last night.

Rob took me to see this movie on one of my birthdays, not sure which one, when it first came out. I liked it. My sister got the DVD free one year and left it at our house. When I was bed bound during my Rhett pregnancy I watched it many a time. It has grown on me to the point that now I love it. I quote it. I have actually day dreamed about what Kathleen and Joe Fox would do if they were real. Would they have a big splashy wedding? Would they have kids? Did she become a great childrens book author? Did he retire from the Mega store? Etc. Silly I know.

This movie reminds me of blog world because it is basically about electronically sharing your life with strangers until you become friends. I think people who share written words develop a bond and a level of familiarity that is unique to any other. maybe it is because you can fully express thought un interupted. Maybe it is because we are more thoughtful in what we write than in what we say. I sometimes wish that letter writing was more in. I read letters my grandparents wrote eachother when they were separated by the war, or a job and feel I know them in a way I never did before. Old letters are a great source of personal history. What will our grandchildren read? blogs?

If so, I guess I better blog more regularly! Have a great Tuesday!

Wednesday, October 20, 2004

Nothin' ... but everything!

A few weeks ago TL post on her blog read "Nothing, I've got nothing"
This week I share that. Lots going on in the Grosz household. Nothing I want to blog about. Kids are cute, house is a mess, dryer is still broken, and I'm wondering what I will make for dinner tonight. But nothing blog worthy, at least nothing that isn't oversharing, or over personal, or just plain overwhelming. You ever had those days?

So I thought I would list a few things I am very thankful for today. Join me if you want. It sure helps chase away the Wednesday blahs...

1. The walk went very well and we raised at least $120,000 towards our yearly goal of $275,000. Last year at this point the walk had raised $90,000 and we hit our year goal of $250,000. THANK YOU MAE ANN AND SUSAN!!!

2. An anon commenter said some very sweet things about my cousin Nick today on an old blog post she found through a web search. Very sweet and encouraging.

3. Rhett thinks standing to go potty is the coolest thing since Shrek and is wearing "big boys" today.

4. Kolby's AR book was really way too easy for her last night! Yeah!

5. My friend Susan sent me tons of fun hand-me-downs for Rhett! I love her! I love free clothes and shoes! I love packages in the mail!

6. My husband loves me even though our house, our room and our Van could all pass for dump sites right now.

7. Rob has some interviews this week that may turn out to be just what he needs.

8. None of my loved ones are being shot at today.

9. Thousands of other peoples loved ones are fighting and being shot at to afford me the luxury of a boring Wednesday.

10. This election will be over soon.

11. The Red Sox just might take the Yankees in game 7 and the Astros still could make it to the world series. (OK , OK so I still have 1-10 and 12)

12. Though my days are sometimes blah, and my heart is sometimes low, my God is ever present. All knowing, all powerful, all loving. And I am his child. Wow!

Monday, October 18, 2004

Pass the Allegra, please!

Hey blog family!
Sorry, I have been out of it. Still recovering from last Saturday. The walk went very well, more on this soon. Right now I am dealing with a allergy attack turned sinus infection. All my spare moments have been spent sleeping and doing laundry. Our dryer is broken (going on week two). I have to go across the street to my Moms to dry. It's dragging my least favorite chore out even more. More soon... head exploding .. too hard to cough and type... Good night!


Friday, October 15, 2004

Anna Kate's Walk

The Walk
Tomorrow morning at 7:15am Rob and I will load up the kids and head to Indian Springs Park for the Waco/Temple area's 5th JDRF Walk to Cure Diabetes. We drove down from Keller for the first two walks before we moved here. This walk has become one of our family's favorite traditions.

This JDRF chapter started five years ago shortly after our good friends Martha Kate & Keith Gunn tramatically found out their 9 month old daughter, Anna Kate had diabetes. The Gunns, along with parents of other diabetic children in the area, formed the Waco/Temple chapter of JDRF and soon held a walk after attending the Dallas walk.

Anna Kate was in a coma the night she was diagnosed. At one point the ER doctor told Keith that he didn't know if she would make it. Her blood sugar was in the 1900+ range (no, that is not a typo). It is amazing that she survived with out any major organ or brain damage, let alone just survived. MANY prayers were speeding to heaven for her that night.

Kolby & Anna Kate Age 3 at the 2nd walk.
Everyday since, Anna Kate has endured several shots and multiple finger pricks. Everything that she puts in her mouth has to be counted and monitored. There have been many trips to the hospital and monthly trips to her Doctor in Houston. The shots and diet only control the diabetes.

Because of her disease, Anna Kate's life expectancy is at least 15 years shorter. Because she developed the disease at such a young age, Anna Kate is more likely to develop organ disease and to have complications with reproduction. Anna Kate needs a cure. Her experience has made our entire church and community much more aware of the diabetic struggle which has almost reached an epidemic state in this country.

After dance at age four.
Through it all, Anna Kate's family has done their best to insure she didn't miss out on anything just because she has diabetes. Today, AK is a vibrant, beautiful, athletic, first grader who loves to play outside and read. She has a very sweet spirit and never met an animal she did not like. Anna Kate is a star on her soccer team and on a local competitive Cheer team. To look at her, you would never think that a deadly disease thrives in her little body.

Rather than retreat into depression after her diagnoses, Martha Kate and Keith became very involved in the fight to find a cure for diabetes. They are passionate in their attempts to fund research needed to cure their little girl. They even visited the President in the oval office to talk about stem cell research. I am so proud of how proactive they have become. But make no mistake, having a child with diabetes is heart wrenching.

AK & Kolby age 5 at the 4th walk.
Kolby and Anna Kate were friends before we moved here three years ago. MK and I were college house mates. Now we go to church together. The girls went to preschool and dance together. If you ask Kolby why we walk, she will tell you it is so Anna Kate won't have to take shots everyday. Kolby knows her friend has an illness but we have never made it a scary thing. Kolby always makes sure I make Crystal lite and sugar free jello jigglers when she knows Anna Kate's coming over. Because of her experience with Anna Kate, Kolby also knows about being low, counting carbs, and staying away from things with too much sugar. We are all a lot more aware.

So tomorrow we will put on our "Anna Kates Angels" shirts and head down to the park in the wee hours of the morning. We will help set up, register walkers and teams, and pass out water bottles and snacks. We believe that someday we will hold a walk in celebration of a cure, not to raise money to find one. For Anna Kate and millions of children like her, we pray that celebration comes very soon.

After dancing "Swan Lake" age 6.
Absolutely no pressure... If you would like to donate to the walk, click the following link or cut and paste it to your address bar. Donations accepted anytime, but only at this link until December 2004. The donation page is a secure site.

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Mind Candy

Kolby is in first grade. In Kindergaten she learned to read words like pat and that. Saxon phonics made that pretty easy. But now words like does/goes their/there and red/read/reed are starting to come into the picture. I'm so glad English is not my second language! It makes me really appreciate first grade teachers and the following little teaser. Enjoy...

Reasons why the English language is so hard to learn:

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse.
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert..
7) Since there is no time like the present, he thought it was time to present the present.
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row.
13) They were too close to the clothes line to close the door.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail
18) After a number of injections my jaw got number.
19) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
20) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
21) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?
22) Will you read the book I read about red reeds?
23) They're over there with their Dad.

There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger;neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren't invented in England or French fries in France (Surprise!). Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren't sweet, are meat.

Quicksand works slowly, boxing rings are square, and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig. And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing, grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham?

If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn't the plural of booth beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend. If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?Is it an odd, or an end?

If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Why do we have noses that run and feet that smell? How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same,while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out, and in which, an alarm goes off by going on.

English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all. That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.

P.S. - Why doesn't "Buick" rhyme with "quick"?
Can you think of any more?

Monday, October 11, 2004

Potty Talk

For too long I put off my urge to blog about this. I just can't hold it any longer, I've got to let loose, and let it flow... RHETT DOES NOT GET POTTY TRAINING!!!

Here is the deal. Kolby was potty trained at 2 1/2 by her patient teachers and peers at preschool. I didn't have to do much. One day she wanted to wear pull-ups to school like her friends (she was the youngest in her class). Two weeks later she had graduated to big girl panties. Except for the occasional hiding in the closet to poop(yes, she did and, no, we don't know why), it was an easy process. Painless. Clean. And after I accidentally flushed a pair of her new Winnie the Pooh panties down the toilet after a poop closet incident, we didn't have those incidents anymore. (accidental parenting success, very rare but much appreciated.) By three Kolby was diaper free completely.

Rhett turned three last month and is FAR,FAR, AWAY from being diaper free. We started talking about the potty around age two. My Mom bought him a special potty at two and a half. I bought all the potty videos. We sing all the potty songs. ( "Now I'm going to the Poootty potty!" is a household top ten!) We have tried sticker charts, skittles, M&M's, ten times in a row for a new Thomas, "all the other kids are doing it", targets (girls don't get this), and just putting him in underoo's and letting the chips fall where they may. (They fell on my off-white carpet!) None of this has really worked. Rhett does it for a time or two and then decides he likes diapers better. We have tried to be subtle in our attempts, awarding success and ignoring failure. But he is three for crying out loud!

Yesterday I found myself saying "Rhett don't those soggy diapers feel yucky?"
" What about that stinky poop, wouldn't you rather put it in the potty?"
He could care less really.

Last night I pondered this scatological* problem. Since it's my blog, and you've read this far, here's what I came up with...(Feel free to add any suggestions or your own observations.)

1. Walking around with sloshey dirty pants doesn't bother Rhett because that is all he has ever known. For three years he has worn diapers. He is used to the soggy feel and pungent smells. Why would it bother him now? It's all he knows.

2. When you have been potty trained for 32 years, it is really hard to relate to someone who isn't. To me, his whole potty thing seems relatively simple. I am right and he needs to get with the program. It takes a concentrated effort for me to relate to my un-trained son. BUT telling Rhett that his poop stinks and berating him for going in his diaper will only alienate and insult him. He will not be any closer to being potty trained. To reach the goal I have to help him decide it's worth it.

3. I can not make Rhett go to the potty. I can bribe, instruct, applaud and aid, but I can not do it for him. Wish I could, but it is one of those learning things that involves free will. My job is to introduce him to the concept, and move heaven and earth to help him "hold it and go potty" until he gets it. Once he gets it, he has to do the rest Then my job is to be an enabler (it isn't a negative thing when your are enabling good), an encourager and an example.

I concluded that as long as he can change his own pull-up by Kindergarten, he'll probably be OK. He is the oldest in his class. Soon peer pressure will be on my side. (another thing that can be positve) He will probably get it the minute I give up.

Aside from my parental conclusions about Rhett, I'm sure you see the comparisons that could be drawn here between Potty Training and church.

1. The lost of this world can not always fathom God. A redeemerless life may be all they know. They may have to see God in someone else to realize what they are missing.

2. When you grow up in a churched atmosphere, it may take a strong concentrated effort to relate to those who didn't. Salvation may seem like a no brainer, but it is not a concept we naturally accept. Telling some one their sin is awful and berating them for not knowing God will only alienate and insult and bring them no closer to the Father.

3 And the last, Jesus saves souls, we do not. It is our job to introduce them to the Savior, move heaven and earth to show them His love, and to encourage, enable and set an example. But they have to make the decision. That stinking free will again!

God says he makes his ways known. My children have taught me more about grace, joy and God than any encounter of my post-teen life. How patient God must be with us! His love and loyalty are just baffling.

Potty talking about God. Never know what to expect on this blog !

*Yes, I learned this word on the boone box.

Sunday, October 10, 2004

Feel Better

Just wanted to say thanks for all the sweet comments and e-mails.
Today is a much better day. It is Sunday after all.

Yesterday at my lowest, my sweet little boy slowly walked up to me hand behind his back, concealing a present for me. "Mama here's a frappo for your headneck to feel better." Sweet, sweet boy. He was bringing me my favorite thing to cheer me up and cure my headache.

But my favorite thing wasn't the Mocha Frappucino. It was the love and thoughtfulness of the one who brought it. And yes, it worked. I felt much, much better.

Rhett's gesture made me think. Do you think God really wants my human gifts, worship and sacrifices, or is it the heart and love of the giver that will please Him most? Hhhmmm. May we all worship Him with the heart of a loving three year old.

Saturday, October 09, 2004

I cried out

Today was a bad day. Though inappropriate and sort of impossible to tell you exactly why, I was searching for God. Praying and seeking I stumbled on to Rubel Shelly's website. I read this article. I did not read it all at once. I read a little, went away, digested, and came back for more. I did this several times. At one point Rubel referred to Colossians 3 and suggested it be read from the Message.

Today, Pauls words to the church in Colosse struck my heart. Here they are ...

He Is Your Life
1So if you're serious about living this new resurrection life with Christ, act like it. Pursue the things over which Christ presides. 2Don't shuffle along, eyes to the ground, absorbed with the things right in front of you. Look up, and be alert to what is going on around Christ--that's where the action is. See things from his perspective. 3Your old life is dead. Your new life, which is your real life--even though invisible to spectators--is with Christ in God. He is your life. 4When Christ (your real life, remember) shows up again on this earth, you'll show up, too--the real you, the glorious you. Meanwhile, be content with obscurity, like Christ. 5And that means killing off everything connected with that way of death: sexual promiscuity, impurity, lust, doing whatever you feel like whenever you feel like it, and grabbing whatever attracts your fancy. That's a life shaped by things and feelings instead of by God. 6It's because of this kind of thing that God is about to explode in anger. 7It wasn't long ago that you were doing all that stuff and not knowing any better. 8But you know better now, so make sure it's all gone for good: bad temper, irritability, meanness, profanity, dirty talk. 9Don't lie to one another. You're done with that old life. It's like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you've stripped off and put in the fire. 10Now you're dressed in a new wardrobe. Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it. All the old fashions are now obsolete. 11Words like Jewish and non-Jewish, religious and irreligious, insider and outsider, uncivilized and uncouth, slave and free, mean nothing. From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ. 12So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. 13Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as quickly and completely as the Master forgave you. 14And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It's your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it. 15Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other. None of this going off and doing your own thing. And cultivate thankfulness.
16Let the Word of Christ--the Message--have the run of the house. Give it plenty of room in your lives. Instruct and direct one another using good common sense. And sing, sing your hearts out to God! 17Let every detail in your lives--words, actions, whatever--be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way. 18Wives, understand and support your husbands by submitting to them in ways that honor the Master. 19Husbands, go all out in love for your wives. Don't take advantage of them. 20Children, do what your parents tell you. This delights the Master no end. 21Parents, don't come down too hard on your children or you'll crush their spirits. 22Servants, do what you're told by your earthly masters. And don't just do the minimum that will get you by. Do your best. 23Work from the heart for your real Master, for God, 24confident that you'll get paid in full when you come into your inheritance. Keep in mind always that the ultimate Master you're serving is Christ.

I will end with a quote from the end of the article of Rubel's I mentioned above:

Are you worried about the same things that caused such distress in Isaiah's day? War? Terrorism? Economic injustice? The plight of the poor? Too much religious ritual and too little life transformation? Too much darkness in your world and too few shafts of light? Then the word of God for you today is that you take heart in his love, his zeal, his power. He dispels the gloom of those in distress. He knows your needs and will not abandon you. Just as he brought Good King Hezekiah as a green sprout out of a dead stump in Judah, he still sees life and possibilities for you. Maybe there is somebody close at hand or about to appear. . . a friend to reassure you, an even better friend to prick your conscience, a doctor to help restore health, an advocate to plead your case in court. Perhaps. But this much is absolutely certain: King Jesus has been born of Mary, suffered your rejection and faced Satan in death, only to rise triumphant in resurrection. Your faith in him is your promise of participation in the renewal of all things, the healing and restoration of all things. The zeal of the Lord Almighty has accomplished it for him, and neither Satan nor any dark power he can bring against you can deny your access to it
If you stumbled on this blog seeking, I hope the words of God through these servant men will be the salve that soothes your broken heart. They were just that for me.

Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. Psalm 107:6

Friday, October 08, 2004

Friday Night Lights

Anyone planning to see Friday Night Lights tonight? I have to tell you I am excited to see this movie. Growing up in San Angelo, the first cheer I learned was "Beat Permian". The Black Panthers from Permian High School are legendary. Long before Austin Powers, the Permian Panthers had worked their MOJO all over west Texas. If our Bobcats had lost every other game, but beat Permian, it would have been a great season...but that didn't happen. Permian was always good at, volleyball, track, baseball, choir... EVERYTHING. They dominated the UIL scene in District 4-5A. Their "MOoooJO,MOoooJO,MOooooJO" chant was haunting and freaked many a young player out!

My family knew Coach Gary Gaines because we went to church with his family in San Angelo when he coached the Bobcats. If he is played as anything other than a stand-up, firm, but big hearted guy, then he is being portrayed wrong. I was not surprised that he is not plannng on seeing the movie until his current Wildcat season is over. (per this Article)Too busy with reality to play with fiction. Coach Gaines is the real deal. I hope ole Billy Bob can do him justice.

Friday nights in West Texas are incredible. I doubt Hollywood can capture that, but I am hoping!

Thursday, October 07, 2004

Tuesday, October 05, 2004


This post has been building for awhile. It is long. Sorry. It is part of my story I want to preserve for my kids.

Did you know I worked for Porsche in my former life?(pre husband, two kids and a mortgage) After I taught kindergarten and up until I had been married 6 months, I spent a few years working the AAA auto show circuit as a Product Specialist for Porsche at their North American Auto Shows. ( Say it all together with me now ... Por-sha ... That is how Dr. Porsche introduced himself, so that is how it is said.) Product specialists are the people the bigger car companies send to the shows to answer questions about the cars and manage the display in addition to the salesmen the local dealerships send. Auto shows Top: LA Middle: NewYork Bottom: Chicago They all look alike don't they?
Auto shows are sort of like the circus. Instead of tents they are housed in convention centers. Instead of animals there are cars. Instead of clowns there are detailers. Instead of bearded ladies there are demostraters in sequined low cut dresses. Instead of fire eating trapese artist, there are product specialist. The trade show industry is a world unto itself. Same crews and staff, same cars, same sets and even same carpet, just different towns and different crowds, although these two seem to run together and feel the same after awhile.

I really loved my time with Porsche. I traveled the US, wore Donna Karen suits and Via Spiga shoes, and learned lots about the amazing German automobile company Porsche. I racked up the frequent flier miles, stayed in cush hotels, and met people I would never have known even existed other wise. Even though it was very un-me, I was really good at my job. Give me a nice SUV that can handle ranch roads, pot holes, and haul furniture, over a Boxster any ole day. (Now Porsche makes a SUV but they didn't then.)

I even aced Porsche school. I could hang with the techies. I knew gear shift ratios, torque settings, and even obscure brake caliper variants. I was a bit of a geek in that respect...but "geek" is good sometimes.... Just ask Bill Gates! I met German engineers and men who spent their whole lives working for Porsche. Some had started as kids cleaning scraps off the Strutgart factory floors during the World Wars and eventually risen to the top of the company. Their fathers and sons worked for Porsche. It is a very family centered company. Last I heard, the Porsche family still had controlling interest in the company...Though the "Global Market" was constantly challenging their abilities to compete and grow while keeping it in the family.
Karen and I in the grandfather to the Boxster, the Spyder 550 "Museum " Car in Miami (This is the model James Dean drove.)

I even met the self declared Prince of Porsche, Jerry Seinfield. The LA show was my baby ( I was lead staff) in 1997 the year the Boxster was introduced. I got to open car doors and fetch Evian for the likes of Arnold, Jay Leno and Cortney Cox. (Biggest shocker...I was a full inch or so taller than Arnold in my three inch Amalfi's!)

It wasn't all glitz and glamour. Standing on your feet for 12 hours in those 3 inch heels was painful! Getting out of the show around 11pm, just in time to go collapse in a hotel bed and start again the next day at 7:00am was exhausting. Living out of a hotel was fun but also lonely. I won't even go into the party scene. The party scene in these big cities was a far cry from the little gatherings I occasionally dropped in on in San Angelo! Let's just say I was very sheltered growing up and it so showed! I did not know what half the stuff people were doing even was. I stayed away from all of it, partly because I was too pooped to go anywhere but dinner after my long days and, partly because I was scared and generally uninterested.

I befriended some of the guys who ran the detail company we used, and the head of show security. These guys, along with a few other married ladies from our marketing company, were my friends. We had long talks on slow days all the while sitting back to back in a show booth answering the occasional question. We always had to face the public. Secret shoppers were paid to come check up on us. One bad secret shopper report and we would be on a plane home never to return. There was pressure to perform.
Test Driving the Boxster at its US introduction in Phoenix

My Porsche days seem like a dizzy whirl of airports, convention centers, taxis and hotels. It was fun for a while, but by the time it ended, I just wanted to be home. I wanted to wake up in the same bed as my husband and have friends that lived near me more than 2 weeks a month. I wanted to go to church, the same church, with my husband and people I knew. Looking back I wonder if God gave me that glimpse of the other life so that I would be more content with my stay home Mom life now.

Spending so much concentrated time with people whose beliefs and back grounds were so different from mine gave me an outlook on church, religion and God that was unique for someone of my "churched" up bringing. Please don't take this as my saying that a "churched upbringing" is a bad thing. To the contrary, I am very grateful to have been raised in a church. (Notice I did not say THE church.) But my Porsche days were spent with a decidedly un-churched crowd.

You get a different perspective when you view church through unchurched eyes. First of all, for the most part, unchurched people don't do the denominational dividing of Christians that Christians do. Just like we look at other non-christian religions in large undivided groups such as Jews, Muslims, Hindus etc., most look at us as just Christians. I wish we looked at ourselves more that way. Second, music or a lack of music, had little relevance to my unchurched friends. It seems that we are the ones who make the big deal about that. Third, even those who did not profess to attend a church of any kind, wanted their children to go to a church. I always found that refreshing, yet odd. The role of a community children's ministry, or even the reach of our current mothers-day-out and preschool programs is often underdeveloped and unappreciated. People will do for their children what they will not do for themselves. This is a barely tapped mission field.
Late night at the booth in LA

I also noticed that few who I considered "unchurched" were turned off by talk of faith in or the idea of God or Jesus Christ. BUT many were totally turned off by churches and Christians who they considered intellectually inferior or fake. I think that is why I am so interested in the post-modern theory as it relates to churches. Many lessons of the post modern movement echo what I experienced. I think that is why so many of the traditions of our "little tribe" rub me the wrong way. I'm sensitive to things I never would have noticed had I not spent time working in the circus world of auto shows.

There is one more thing my time with Porsche really taught me. Morals without Jesus are not enough. I worked with several "good" people, but with out a Lordship to direct them, their moral compass was off. It showed in their marriages and their relationships with their kids. It came across in their business dealings and in their day to day dealings. They might do the right thing in word and deed but their hearts were not in it.

For example, a salesman told me in 22 years he had never cheated on his wife. I thought "Hey, a good guy with morals." When he added it was because his wife owned a PI firm and the alimony would be too high, I realized doing the right thing for the wrong reasons is not enough. He wasn't kidding either. I met his wife at dinner one night and she told me the same thing ...that she knew he didn't cheat on her because she routinely had him tailed. WOW! Later my coworker said the wife told me about tailing her husband to warn me from messing with him! I was flabbergasted!(He was old and none too cute..eewww!) What a marriage! Can you imagine?

My point is that GOD and JESUS are so necessary in our lives. They are not optional. Even though I was raised in a great church family, educated at a christian university, and experienced as a missionary in Kenya for six months, I did not "get it" completely until my time in the trenches with Porsche. There are so many people who need GOD. They don't need religion. They don't need a free Bible in a hotel. They need a person of flesh to show them a Savior who transcends flesh and blood. I hope in the next twenty years our churches will evolve into bodies that heed the urgency of the Gospel and treat GOD and JESUS as necessary for a lost world, in spite of our church cultural traditions.

I personally have such a struggle with this. I get so overwhelmed with my struggles and hardships that I forget that all this earth stuff doesn't matter when compared to the question of eternity. The retreat this weekend reminded me of God's love for his children who have yet to find him. There are people around me everyday who seem to have the earth stuff licked, but their eternity is still lost. Do I see that? I mean really see the eternal picture of those who do not claim Christ?

I long for salvation goggles! I want to see the world through the filter of Jesus blood. Only then will I see how things really are. That type vision doesn't come standard on any of us. It's an upgrade none of us could afford. Jesus bought the option of salvation for any who claim HIM. We just have to let Him in the drivers seat.....And not even a Porsche can provide that kind of ride!

Blessings blog family!

Monday, October 04, 2004

Well I'm back!

The retreat was great. I feel like I am going through retreat withdrawals! For so many months the retreat has been a constant on my "to do" list... It is strange for it to be over! Actually there are still some loose ends to tie up but, for the most part, it's over. (Insert satisfied sigh here)

There is much I want to blog about but little time for blogging. Let me say two things

1. God rocks. The retreat was not what I expected (which is weird since I planned it) but it was exactly what it needed to be (which is not weird since we asked God to take it and make it what he wanted). Much, much more to share about this soon.

2 Mae Anne Hale is the sweetest person in the world! Little did she know last week when she sent my kids goody bags in the mail that they would get here at just the right time. Saturday I got the absolute saddest message on my cell phone from Kolby. She was crying and saying she really needed to talk to me. I felt awful because she had left the message the night before but because there was a storm and I no cell signal at the retreat site, I didn't get the call. So I hurriedly dialed home, slightly panicked. Kolby answered and was so happy. "Mae from your blog sent me a diary!" Yes, Mae's presents came during Mommies absence and made all feel much better! Rhett has played with his "catching plates & sticky ball" non-stop.( I have a feeling he has renamed that toy, though I didn't see the package!) Mae Ann just made their day and mine too! Hopefully we can return the favor soon! :) We love you auntie Mae! Bloggers are the best!

Must run. Today's agenda includes a 3 year check up, flu shots for all, the children's Museum, Gymboree, a dozen errands and hopefully a nap!

Blessing blog family!