Suzanne's Second Estate

A web log of my thoughts, activities, life....

Tuesday, July 31, 2007

A Tale of Ten Cousins

Top row (left to right): Brooke, Matt, Craig and Scott.
Bottom row: Grace, Eve, Me, Grandpa, Bekah and Melissa.

Over Independence Day weekend, I attended my family reunion in Columbus (Dad's side). I haven't written about it before now, because unfortunately my camera broke right before the event and consequently I had no photos.

It's not every day I get to write about my cousins, since they live in Ohio, Kansas, North Carolina and Indiana. If you're observant, you'll notice that only nine cousins are represented in this picture. That is because my sister Sarah had already left to fly back to the Northwest.

I have so many wonderful memories involving these people: camping in the rain, games of hide-and-seek, lemonade stands, Peter Pan productions, making up songs, road trips rockin' out to the Beach Boys and many others. (If cousins are reading, post your favorite memory!)

I consider my cousins an exceptional group of people. We may have not lived close, but we were close in spirit.

Sunday, July 29, 2007

On Vacation!

So far, my trip to the Northwest had been wonderful! I spent the first day with my college friend Krista. Our conversation and kindred-spiritness were good for my soul. Then I spent a day in Aberdeen with my parents and sister, got stuck in a massive traffic jam on the way to Seattle and watched "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolored Dreamcoat" at the Taproot Theater (my friend Sarah's sister played the parts of Judah and the Baker). I drove back to Aberdeen (sans traffic jam) yesterday morning. Then we were off to sister Sarah's voice concert.

The concert was amazing (my blog about that should appear on the Boundless Line tomorrow). The pic above is of me and Bekah before the show. After the show we celebrated Sarah's 24th birthday.

Sarah doing business-coffee house chic.

This morning Sarah and I set out to visit Imago Dei, a church with close associations with our alma mater Multnomah Bible College. Unbeknownst to us, the church was not meeting this morning due to a baptism service happening later. So we ended up at Palio's, one of our favorite Portland coffee shops. Sarah informed me that this is her first "take my computer to a coffee shop" experience, so I took a picture.

I hope you are having a blessed day. Thank you for your patience with my blogging while I'm on vacation! Tomorrow, I will attend the Oregon Christian Writer's Conference at Canby Grove Conference center. Thus will begin "Part 2" of my Northwest trip.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

A Good Psalm

I have been meditating on the first eight verses of Psalm 34. It's encouraging to me in so many ways. The Lord hears and answers. And His goodness is as tangible an experience as taste or sight.

I will extol the LORD at all times;
his praise will always be on my lips.

My soul will boast in the LORD;
let the afflicted hear and rejoice.

Glorify the LORD with me;
let us exalt his name together.

I sought the LORD, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears.

Those who look to him are radiant;
their faces are never covered with shame.

This poor man called, and the LORD heard him;
he saved him out of all his troubles.

The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,
and he delivers them.

Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

I Can Hardly Contain Such Happiness!

The Complete Jane Austin. PBS. 2008.

HT: Dance by the Light

Meandering Across the Web

So today I read an excellent article on Boundless by Rachel Starr Thomson. (If you like literature in the vein of "Anne of Green Gables" and "Ivanhoe," you'll love this!)

My enjoyment of the article led me to check out Rachel's blog.

On that blog, Rachel mentioned her favorite comic was Will Write for Chocolate by Debbie Ridpath Ohi.

It was there that I found this hilarious comic: "Things You Shouldn't Say to a Writer on a First Date." Enjoy!

Monday, July 16, 2007

Seven Falls

Me and Josh in the mysterious blue light of Seven Falls on Saturday (Yes, I switched out the first photo). We joined Bruce and Mike on a photo outing. You can check out Bruce's pictures here.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

One of my Favorite Videos: Team Hoyt

I saw this video a couple of years ago, and I've never forgotten it. Rick Hoyt was born in 1962 with the umbilical cord coiled around his neck and oxygen cut off from his brain. Rick's parents were told that there would be no hope for their child’s development. When Rick began using a specialized computer to communicate, his parents were surprised to learn that he was both a highly intelligent individual and an avid sports fan. He told his dad he wanted to compete.

This is a video of Team Hoyt competing in a triathalon: 26.2 miles of running, 112 miles of bicycling, and 2.4 miles of swimming. The picture of how Christ carries us is striking. Because he cannot walk or talk, Rick must depend entirely on the efforts of his Father. And yet victory seems sweeter for it. I hope this video blesses you.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Celebrate Christmas (in July)

Back in October, I had the privilege of meeting Emily, an editor at Randall House, at the Glorieta Christian Writer's Conference. She informed me that they were looking for Christmas skits, so I submitted several that I had written for my young adult Sunday school class.

Randall House included two of them in "Celebrate Christmas," a book of Christmas dramas. These are my first published plays (and actually my first published work outside of magazines), so I was very excited to receive several copies in the mail last week. Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Teens Who Serve

Last night I played laser tag and ate pizza with a few of the coolest girls in Colorado. These young ladies are in high school and are the Pike's Peak Child Evangelism Fellowship summer missionaries. That means they're sharing the gospel with hundreds of children this summer by teaching 5-Day-Clubs.

Some of you know that my siblings and I were active in the Christian Youth in Action (CYIA) program in Washington state throughout high school. I believe the program significantly shaped my heart for evangelism and service. Some of my most profound spiritual moments came during my summers serving with CEF.

I was encouraged last night to see the quality, devotion and enthusiasm of this new crop of teens. Josh and I carried on a very mature conversation with the three girls who sat across from us at the pizza place. They, of course, had their silly moments, too. (One of the highlights of the evening was when they entertained the pizza chefs through a window to the kitchen). I thank God for these young people who love Him and want to share the gospel with others.

Our summer missionaries have four more weeks of teaching clubs. If you're in the area and would like to host a 5-Day-Club, let me know. Please pray that these teens would see much spiritual fruit this summer—in their own lives and in the lives of children.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Discerning the Chick Flick

Today I read an excellent article in Brio and Beyond written by my friend Ashleigh. In "The Chick Flick Unveiled," Ashleigh explores the unrealistic and unbiblical ideas the typical romantic comedy promotes. She writes:

Am I suggesting we stop watching chick flicks? Certainly not. If we did, I’d have to throw out at least a dozen DVDs. What I’m saying is this: Not only do we need to exercise caution in what messages we feed ourselves via the media, but we need to combat lies with the truth.

How can we do this? First, in the area of romance, God should be our guide, not Hollywood screenwriters. As a former film student, I quickly learned that integrity of message isn’t a prime motivator in writing a script. Hidden agendas, political views and, most important, the power of the almighty dollar come into play. We shouldn’t trust those who don’t have our best interests in mind to influence our thinking and behavior in romantic matters.

This is a great article on media discernment that all young women should read. Spread the word!