Friday, March 28, 2014

Famous American Day Photo Gallery

Some of my favorite photos from Famous American Day

Susan Butcher

Betsy Ross

Abraham Lincoln

Shirley Temple Black


Susan Butcher and Charles Drew

Pocahontas, Benjamin Franklin, Davey Crockett, and others

Mary Cassatt

Rachel Carson

Georgia O'Keeffe

Helen Keller

Helen Keller

Mia Hamm

Anna Rose!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Susan and the Giggles

One of Anna Rose's school's Rites of Passages is the First Grader "Famous American" project. Each student chooses a Famous American to study. Then, they write a speech in the first person and perform as their Famous American in front of a bunch of people.

Anna Rose chose Susan Butcher.

I never heard of her. But over the last month, I sure have learned a lot about the lady. Turns out, she was a pretty amazing person. Her love of animals is what attracted Anna Rose. Susan, like Anna Rose, was a dog lover. She used to round up the neighborhood dogs and take them to the park - like 20 of them at a time! It was great preparation for the Iditarod Racer she would one day become.

The woman won the race four times!

Long story short, I've become a big fan.

And it just so happened that Anna Rose's assignment coincided with this year's Iditarod. And of course, there is an App for that.

We cheered on Ally Zirkle the whole way. Sadly, she came up 2 minutes short! Erg! That Dallas Seavey. I guess his stardom from the National Geographic Channel's Ultimate Survival Alaska (my new favorite show - thanks Jeremy for telling me about it) hasn't yet gotten to his head. 

All that to say, it is a tough sport. 1,157 miles is tough for any gender. And for Susan to compete with dudes and win it four times is quite the accomplishment. She actually finished in the top 10 fifteen out of sixteen years (the one she didn't - her dogs got mauled by an angry moose - and that year she had been on pace to set the record). 

Well, Anna Rose has done an awesome job with her speech. Here are some outtakes that are sure to give you the giggles!

Here is Anna Rose performing in front of the Jr. and Sr. Kindergartens.

Thursday, March 13, 2014


What did YOU think I was talking about?


Since CLAY has come out, I thought it would be a good idea to freshen up on my pottery skills. Because after you write a book called CLAY, you can be sure that someone's going to ask you: "So do you do pottery?"

Well, at least now I can say I have taken classes.

I took a "masters class" actually. (I knew the teacher, and it was the only time that worked in my schedule).

And let me tell you, these ladies (they were all ladies in the masters class) can throw some serious pots. Good Lord. I need to load some pictures of their work. (These pictures are from a retreat I led last year).

Check out the rowboat. Nice work!

All right. Everyone who is still reading this blog entry, raise your right hand and repeat after me. "I, state your name, will take a pottery class, someday before I die."


Seriously, the trial and achievement of throwing a vessel that can hold liquid is an experience every human being should have. 

I drink out of this mug most every day. And let me tell you, coffee tastes better out of your own mug. 

Listen, I'm giving this advice to you free of charge. The Sawtooth Center gives me nothing for rep-ing it. Find some time. Take a class. You'll be happy you did. 

And when you complete a mug of your own, let me know. We'll meet up. We'll drink a cup. I'll let you pick the beverage.  

Thursday, March 06, 2014

Do You Want to Build a Snowman?

"Head Shots"

"Tip of My Tongue"

"Dancing Dave" 

"How Did My One Eye Get So Big?"

"Jacket Thermostat"

"Bunny Ears"


"Red Headed Step Child"

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

Then There Was ONE

One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them,
One Ring to bring them all and in the darkness bind them

I'm not sure where my Ring fits into all this...but something mysteriously Middle Earthy and miraculous happened when it came to my Ring Number Two. 

Just when I had given it all up for lost (I was planning that night to talk "The Ring Tattoo Idea" over with Leela) I looked down, and there it was. 

Sitting in the middle of the carpet. 

Here I thought I had lost it on Silas Creek Parkway. Turns out it had been sitting on the floor of our closet. 

I'm not sure how I missed it. There is the fact that our light had been on the fritz. I had changed it out the day before. Even so, our closet isn't that big. Certainly, I would have stepped on it. Was it in the pocket of my jeans? Had it gotten caught in one of my shirts? I don't know. However, what now is certain: I didn't have a ring, and then I did again. 

I can't explain it. 

I did pray. A few weeks ago, I had asked God to help me find two things, my Bible and my wedding ring. Small items. Insignificant.

Didn't find either of them. The following morning I went downstairs to pick out a new Bible from the pile. I walked through the den back to my coffee that was awaiting me at the kitchen table, and out of the corner of my eye - there was my Bible just sitting there. 

The new Bible went back on the pile. 

I had this weird feeling the same kind of thing was going to happen with my ring. The next day at around midnight I drove to Ebert and Silas Creek and spent an hour or so looking for my ring. No dice. Disappointed I drove home, went to bed, and gave up hope. 

A week and a half later, I change out the light - and there it was. 

Two lost things found. 

I don't usually quote Scripture on my blog, but my experience reminds me of Luke 15:8-10

Suppose a woman has ten silver coins and loses one. Doesn’t she light a lamp, sweep the house and search carefully until she finds it? And when she finds it, she calls her friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost coin.’ In the same way, I tell you, there is rejoicing in the presence of the angels of God over one sinner who repents.”

I'm rejoicing this morning.