Friday, October 31, 2008

Play it, Sam

(Hat tip to Singing Owl.)

You Are an Ingrid!
  • mm.ingrid_.jpg

    You are an Ingrid -- "I am unique"

    Ingrids have sensitive feelings and are warm and perceptive.

    How to Get Along with Me
    • * Give me plenty of compliments. They mean a lot to me.
    • * Be a supportive friend or partner. Help me to learn to love and value myself.
    • * Respect me for my special gifts of intuition and vision.
    • * Though I don't always want to be cheered up when I'm feeling melancholy, I sometimes like to have someone lighten me up a little.
    • * Don't tell me I'm too sensitive or that I'm overreacting!

    What I Like About Being an Ingrid
    • * my ability to find meaning in life and to experience feeling at a deep level
    • * my ability to establish warm connections with people
    • * admiring what is noble, truthful, and beautiful in life
    • * my creativity, intuition, and sense of humor
    • * being unique and being seen as unique by others
    • * having aesthetic sensibilities
    • * being able to easily pick up the feelings of people around me

    What's Hard About Being an Ingrid
    • * experiencing dark moods of emptiness and despair
    • * feelings of self-hatred and shame; believing I don't deserve to be loved
    • * feeling guilty when I disappoint people
    • * feeling hurt or attacked when someone misundertands me
    • * expecting too much from myself and life
    • * fearing being abandoned
    • * obsessing over resentments
    • * longing for what I don't have

    Ingrids as Children Often
    • * have active imaginations: play creatively alone or organize playmates in original games
    • * are very sensitive
    • * feel that they don't fit in
    • * believe they are missing something that other people have
    • * attach themselves to idealized teachers, heroes, artists, etc.
    • * become antiauthoritarian or rebellious when criticized or not understood
    • * feel lonely or abandoned (perhaps as a result of a death or their parents' divorce)

    Ingrids as Parents
    • * help their children become who they really are
    • * support their children's creativity and originality
    • * are good at helping their children get in touch with their feelings
    • * are sometimes overly critical or overly protective
    • * are usually very good with children if not too self-absorbed

    Take Are You a Jackie or a Marilyn? Or Someone Else? Mad Men-era Female Icon Quiz at HelloQuizzy

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Animal updates

Amie went to the vet, who confirmed that she was suffering from a flea allergy. Two shots, two bottles of pills, and many $$$s later, she seems to be feeling better.

On a sadder note, our sweet office cat, Grisi, has gone to the Bridge. She went missing one recent morning, and after a search, two of my coworkers found her body, stretched out in a grassy area near our patio. There was no obvious sign of trauma, and I am sure we'll never know what happened to her. We buried her near the spot where she was found; we can see her grave from the patio. My friend D ordered a plaque that says, "Cats leave paw prints on our hearts", which we placed on her grave day before yesterday.

As I've said before, I come from a long line of dog people. Grisi was the first cat I have ever gotten to know. Some of us are still hearing "Meeow (feed me)" echoing down the hall. I felt honored that mine was one of the offices she would visit, even though I had to set her on the floor whenever she hopped onto my desk and walked on my papers! A couple of chairs in the building were hers and hers alone, and when she curled up and went sound asleep her little tongue would protrude, just like this:

Rest in peace, sweet girl. We miss you.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Weekend rambles

The Piney Woods of east Texas contain a deep forest known as the Big Thicket. Over the past sixty years or so, logging and general development have taken a lot of it away. Recently, two bullies named Rita and Ike added to the destruction. Last weekend the three of us headed to Hardin County to see some of what was left. The state parks where we had hoped to hike are closed now (thanks a lot, Ike), including one that had just completed about $750,000 of post-Rita renovation. Fortunately, much of the Big Thicket National Preserve has reopened. There we found some broken and fallen trees, but they were absorbed into lush areas of great beauty, diversity, and solitude:

Cypress swamps reminiscent of my Mississippi Delta homeland.

Long trails surrounded by all shades of green, opening into meadows scattered with wildflowers.

Village Creek--we'll come back and canoe here another time.

Four of the five types of carnivorous plants found in North America grow in the Big Thicket, but the only one we identified was the pitcher plant.

"Bugs check in, but they don't check out!"

Here's the main lodge at the remote country B & B where we stayed, at the end of a long gravel road. We slept in the barn, which was a lot nicer than that sounds!

The owners of the B & B also have a small nursery on-site, with pick-your-own blueberries in season, and satsumas (like a tangerine) and Meyer lemons that we enjoyed picking to take home. We also bought a Meyer lemon tree, which grows well in this area and will be a nice reminder of our weekend in the Thicket. Flowers like this Confederate rose (actually a type of hibiscus) also grace the property.

I loved the way they start out nearly white and fade to dark pink, just like cotton blossoms...something else that reminded me of the terrain of my childhood.

Amie seemed to enjoy walking with us, since it wasn't too hot, and we ambled at her pace. However, we covered about four miles on Saturday, which was a lot for an old dog. Other hazards of the deep woods presented themselves: mosquitoes and fire ants for us, and fleas and ticks for poor Amie. We dusted and bathed her as soon as we got home, and I know there are no bugs on her now, but the poor girl has been scratching like mad all week. I read that dogs that are seldom exposed to fleas can have an allergic reaction to flea bites, lasting a week or so. We've been treating her with home remedies but I think I may have to take her for an allergy shot tomorrow. The Scientist and I have been scratching and brushing her all weekend, and when we stop she nudges our hands to ask for more.

This region is only a hundred miles or so from our home, but we felt as though we were much farther away. Except for the bug bites, we'd love to go again.

Catching up

It doesn't seem like two weekends ago that we had a great meetup with The Boy and his humans. We talked, barbecued, ate, and enjoyed a leisurely walk with all the dogs (including Otto and Cody, my MIL's dogs). The dogs got along, and the humans began discussing our next meetup (sometime after New Year's, perhaps). Here's another version of the photo the Typist posted:

Thanks for coming, y'all! In another couple of years we WILL do Galveston!

Always reforming

At least I hope I am. It feels that way this week. Being re-formed doesn't always feel good.

This morning for Reformation Sunday we sang a Bach cantata (number 118) that is usually translated "O Jesus Christ, My Life's Light", although the translation we sang was a bit different:

O Jesus, Lord, my light and life
My hope, my joy, my aid in strife
On earth my visit is but brief
And bowed am I by sin and grief.

This week I am comforted to have such a powerful aid in strife.

Lord Sabaoth His name
From age to age the same
And He must win the battle.


Friday, October 10, 2008

Still here

Lots going on, not much that's bloggable.
  • My MIL had another back surgery that we thought would be fairly minor. It turned out to be nearly as extensive as her surgery last Christmas, with several nights in the hospital and a stay in rehab (where she was moved today). Please pray that this will help, and for patience and lovingkindness for all....
  • Head cold and pinkeye. Don't worry, that's all I'm going to say about that.
  • People who no-show (twice).
  • Pastor Nominating Committee: Busy, interesting, exciting, unbloggable!
  • And finally, something that is both exciting and bloggable: this weekend we're seeing the Typist, the Alpha, and The Boy! Cannot wait!
  • Have a peaceful weekend!