Thursday, July 26, 2007


The Games People Play series at TrueNorth Church has been a fun summer series...lots of diverse topics and surprises. And what perfect timing for my friend Tracy to teach me how to play Rummikub. My girls and I are hooked. It is not a game that is considered a quality time activity, because there is not much communication except for "Your turn" (noise breaks your thought process on this one). It is a game of strategy and luck using runs and sets of numbers. These days it is not easy to find a family activity that doesn't involve a screen or controllers!

Move over Sudoku...Rummikub is in the house!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

happy blogiversary!

Last week marked one year since I started this blog. Time flies when you're having fun! Looking back at my first blog, I remember how excited I was to begin this endeavor...but also scared at the same time. It has been a great journey of self-expression and networking. How did I ever keep all these thoughts in my head before blogging???

19 things I have learned since starting my blog one year ago (because I couldn't think of 20):

1. I have never, ever, considered myself a writer.

2. But maybe I am after all.

3. It is sometimes scary to push the 'publish' key.

4. Adding a stat counter helped me to know that people do actually read my posts.

5. How do people from places like Singapore and Guam find my blog?

6. I am encouraged when people tell me that a particular post was helpful to them, made them cry, or just laugh-out-loud.

7. I appreciate the 5 people who SUBSCRIBE to my blog through bloglines.

8. My blog reflects me and I won't apologize for that. I also blog how I talk.

9. Blogging is not a great way to make money.

10. I have deleted a few posts within 30 seconds of publishing.

11. It is better to have no post than a bad post. Some bloggers disagree on this.

12. I don't always know what I'm going to blog about...I just start typing.

13. Most readers don't like polls, but I do.

14. I can't get my husband to read my blog without my asking, but he can't get me to floss my teeth regularly either.

15. Going on vacation helps fill my mind with creative ideas, which sometimes end up as blog posts.

16. Posting more frequently results in more visitors.

17. I try to keep my blog fresh: guest bloggers, interviews, relevant content, etc.

18. I want/need a new blog design. Anyone up for the challenge?

19. I heart blogs...reading and writing them.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

pop goes the culture

I was Walmartin' the other day and ended up spending two hours there. I had no idea I had been there that long. It was the greeting card aisle that sucked me always does. Don'cha just love the Hallmark musical cards? Open. Close. Open. Close. Hey...the fun never ends!

Speaking of Hallmark, where greeting card writers have WAY too much fun... I went to the big Hallmark store in Augusta while I was out that way recently (yes, I played with the musical cards, all 200 of them. Go here to see them). What really caught my attention was the Pop Goes the Culture collection, a new series of cards and gift items based on memorable quotes from famous people, movie and tv shows. I was LOL while reading quotes from Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Saturday Night Live, The Office, and Napoleon Dynamite, to name a few. These cards are a fun way to connect with your recipient using cultural references. And for $2.50 a pop, you could get two for the price of one musical card!

Monday, July 16, 2007

The Hot Seat with Justin Benson

I have had the privilege of playing in a band with Justin Benson at TrueNorth Church for the last three years. Justin has been playing drums for TNC since he was 12 years old, barely tall enough to see over the drum set. Now at the age of 15, he is growing up right before my eyes and I hope he remembers me when he becomes famous! Isn't he just the cutest thing???

1. Justin, what was the first big concert you remember seeing?

My mom took me to see KISS in Atlanta when I was about eight years old. I still have a lot of memories of the whole night...the drum kit, the giant screen, and the confetti guns at the end of the show.

2. How long have you been playing drums?

I began playing seriously around age 11.

3. Who are your musical influences?

Peter Criss from KISS, Kenny Wayne Shepherd, Stevie Ray Vaughan/Double Trouble

4. What are you currently listening to on your iPod?

tobyMac, Maroon 5, John Mayer, Family Force 5, George Benson

5. Baseball was once a big part of your life. Do you think you might play again?

I needed to choose between my music and ball because doing both was too much of a time commitment, so I put ball on hold for now. Maybe I'll play old-man softball one day!

Friday, July 13, 2007

stalker car

4:00am - Alan wakes me up and says he hears a dog barking. I don't.

4:01am - Alan walks around the house, looking out all the windows and sees a car's headlights shining down the street in front of our neighbor's house.

4:02am - I go looking for him because he's been gone way too long.

4:03am - We both peer out the front windows at the stalker car. Headlights on. Emergency flashers on. Not moving.

4:10am - The car drives off slowly, emergency flashers still flashing.

4:11am - Alan gets comfortable on the sofa in the front room, still peeking through the blinds. I go back to bed.

4:13am - The stalker car drives by again very slowly, lights still flashing. Alan tries to get the make of the car and the license plate number.

4:30am - Stalker car has not returned. Alan comes back to bed.

The next day:

11:00am - I call my teenage neighbor and warn her that there was a stalker car in front of her house at 4:00am, but not to be scared....because she can call me if there is a problem.

2:00pm - I call my dad who, being a senior citizen, is usually awake at 4:00am. And since he lives in my neighborhood, I tell him of our stalker with the flashing lights.

2:02pm - "Laura, that's the paper carrier".

2:03pm - Oh.

Monday, July 09, 2007

sand structures

Our family loves to build sand "structures" on the beach. Here is our sea turtle:

One lady asked if we minded if her son drove his toy car on our "pyramid". Doesn't she know the Hard Rock Cafe when she sees it??? And isn't there an unwritten rule that you don't mess with other people's sand art?

And this one took us all day to complete! Just kidding. This sand castle at Myrtle Beach wins the Guinness Book of World Record for World's Tallest Sand Castle at 49 feet tall. Kacie said that sand must have had Floam in it!

Sunday, July 08, 2007

mad church disease?

Just got home from vacation and have been catching up on some blog reads today. I found this website from a link to a post on a blog that also linked to the site with a post. In other words, I don't remember how I stumbled upon this. I chase rabbits.

Anne Jackson is on staff at a church in Texas and is also a PK (preacher's kid). She is writing a book about a condition that is affecting church staff, their families, and volunteers alike. Symptoms include but are not limited to: fatigue, burnout, unexplained physical ailments, workaholism, and severed families. Mad Church Disease is contagious and a cure must be found.

In order to find a cure, extensive research on the disease is necessary. I encourage you to go to the website above and take a survey based on your current or past ministry position(s). Until August 3, Anne is conducting this survey to provide supporting information for her book. As of July 4, seven hundred surveys had been submitted!

Disclaimer: There is no hidden agenda behind this post. I do not have this disease (unless I am in denial) and I am not trying to infect others. But this condition is not discussed often because people are afraid to get real. The future of church ministry is at stake and a book like Mad Church Disease could put leaders on the road to healing, bringing an end to this epidemic.