Tag Archives: retreat

Mountain Bling

28 Oct

Walt and I went to music class last week after Dave and I got home from our retreat in North Carolina. I found out our music teacher, whom we love, was also in Black Mountain while we were there. She was at something called the Leaf Festival, where they play music, camp, join in on drum circles, and artists sell their wares. Sounds like a lot of fun, actually.

Adina brought back this very cool instrument that a man named Jonathan Rose had made out of used propane tanks. It makes a most beautiful sound. Who knew?

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I always love the small world feeling you get when you see all these coincidences in your life. My father is on the board of Blossman Gas, a fantastic family-owned propane business in the Southeast. I plan on at least attempting to connect these people together for retail purposes; it could be fun for them both!

And while Walter loves music class and has really blossomed there, Adina has played an even bigger role in our lives. I was struggling with Walter’s lack of talking and looking into speech therapy, but unsure if it was really necessary to spend the money when Walter seems so bright. I was on the fence of “every child develops differently” and “maybe he needs some help”. I mentioned this to Adina and she pushed me again to teach him sign language. My response was: I’ve tried a million times and he just smiles at me! But I’ll give it one more go I guess!

That week was the magic week. He picked up on signing a few words, and it must have flipped a switch in his brain. He went from 30 to 60+ words in the last couple weeks, copies sounds and words we make, speaks in phrases, and uses signs without prompting. He’s really getting it and it’s really fun to watch. I knew it was in there (I wasn’t worried about that part of it), but I wanted it to come out!

The best part has been when we went grocery shopping the other day, without any prompting ever on my part, he pointed to the wine section and said repeatedly, “Wine! Wine! Wine!” … That’s my boy!

“The opposite of spiritual is not material, but impersonal.” – Peter Hobbie

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Juxtaposition

20 Oct

Saturday we went for a hike in Montreat, NC. It looked like this and I was happy:

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Monday is absolutely back to the grind. I’ve been working at the computer all morning, and Jose is giving our kitchen a facelift.

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Not nearly as relaxing a view, but I do appreciate the Dexter-esque kill room look.

What a Presbyterian Deacon Looks Like

28 Apr

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Yay! Happy Deacon!

It’s great to be a deacon lately. This weekend we had our retreat, and it was really a lot of fun. When our pastor/board liaison Drew first mentioned going to a monastery and attending 5-7 worship services a day, I thought to myself… uh oh. That’s a little too pious for me! But luckily we toned it down a bit and I think it was a great weekend for all.

Friday night David let me have all the deacons, spouses, and kids over for some fellowship. I actually overestimated how much we would drink, which I thought was surprising for Presbyterians, but I guess not for me! We hung out for a few hours, which was really nice since usually we are working and going to meetings together. And watching Walt play with some of the older boys before he went to bed was one of the highlights of my life. David and I cleaned up then put in Saving Mr. Banks before bed. Great movie.

The next morning Dave and I assembly-lined some sandwiches for the picnic I wanted the deacons to have when we went to the Monastery of the Holy Spirit. Luckily it was a beautiful day! None of us had ever been to the monastery, so we wondered around their gift shop and bonsai garden, watched the short movie of the monastery’s history, and enjoyed the museum. Then we attended the midday prayers before lunch. 15 minutes, short and sweet!

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They built this place with the work of their own hands.

One of the things I liked best about the monks and their home is how trusting they are. They have really old bonsais just sitting there for you to touch. And all the grounds are open for you to have a picnic or play or exercise, etc. It was really inspiring for me since so many places these days have so many rules and are just out there to make money. The monastery is there to share the beauty of the land with anyone who wants to visit.

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It was such a gorgeous day to be sitting under the trees enjoying good friends and breaking bread together.

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And Shirley and Raymond treated us with a waltz too!