Sunday, August 31, 2008

Mission 4 Monday : Trust during rough times - A Firm Place to Stand by Marja Bergen

My friend, Peggy, has just started a new meme on Monday called "Mission 4 Monday".

The purpose of MISSION 4 MONDAY is to share YOUR MISSION each week.

I am so thankful that I can participate in Mission 4 Monday.

It is helping me to reflect anew on the mission of this blog.

When I first started this blog, my purpose was to share with others God's goodness and mercies to me in managing clinical depression and bipolar disorder. I also wanted to share with others coping resources that I have found useful. I am thankful to God for bringing me into contact with many of you, my wonderful friends, and we can mutually encourage one another in our management of clinical depression, bipolar disorder and other illness.

As times go by, God brought me into contact with many of you who are very encouraging friends at Word-Filled Wednesday and Thankful Thursday. I got to know Word-Filled Wednesday through Michelle of Ozarks sew n' sew. Thanks Michelle! And from there on I read about Thankful Thursday. Word-Filled Wednesday and Thankful Thursday. has helped me to grow spiritually.

As I reflect on the Mission the Lord has given me in my life and through this blog, I thought of the following:

1) To glorify God through the testimony of His love, goodness and mercies to me.
2) To share with others resources I have found useful in managing clinical depression, bipolar disorder and other illness.
3) To share my passion in photography and God's Words with others through Word-Filled Wednesday.
4) To share God's goodness and mercies to me through all the changing scenes in life through Thankful Thursday. May God help me to cultivate a thankful heart and find reasons to rejoice in the Lord daily and to praise Him for His unchanging and everlasting love, unfailing mercies and sufficient grace.

We face many challenges in our life, whether it be in terms of illness, family, relationships, work, etc etc. It is a great comfort to remember that God is with us and He will see us safely through. No matter what God allows us to go through in this life, He is able to work something good out of it for our benefit, for His glory and the good of His people (Romans 8:28). And we are more than conquerors through Christ Who loved us (Romans 8:37)!

For this reason, I found much joy and comfort in the Lord, in my daily walk. My struggles to manage clinical depression and bipolar disorder, has drawn me closer to God as I experience His love and goodness in many wonderful ways daily. God's Words comfort and strengthen me. I know God loves me and He is with me. I saw Him working very wonderfully in my life and in others life.

I am thankful to God that I can serve Him through this blog. It is my prayers that God may use this blog to glorify Himself, help other Christians to grow in Him and lead others to seek and know His saving grace and love.

For this first Mission 4 Monday post, I like to share with you a very encouraging article from a book my friend, Marja, just published. This article is very helpful in encouraging us how we can trust in God in very rough times, whether it be a time of illness or other afflictions and trials.

My friend, Marja Bergen, has just launched a new book entitled "A Firm Place to Stand" on how God has enabled her to find meaning in her life with bipolar disorder.

Marja is from British Columbia, Canada. She is a person with bipolar disorder and a faith in Jesus Christ. Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, is a mood disorder with extreme mood swings ie. mania and clinical depression.

Marja is interested in writing about mental health issues, especially encouraging a more understanding view by the church. In an effort to help her church give support to people with mood disorders, Marja has started a support group called "Living Room". Now she is encouraging groups to start up elsewhere. Marja has been a great blessing, encouragement and help to those who attend Living Room and those of us who read about her experiences there.

This new book "A Firm Place to Stand" is a very encouraging book as Marja shared about how God gives her grace and strength to live a meaningful and fruitful life as she seek to manage bipolar disorder. Her suffering has drawn her closer to God as she learn to look to Him and find comfort and help from Him. Her suffering also taught her compassion and it has helped her to help others coping with their pain.

In this book, Marja shared many of her own struggles and victory over the various issues associated with bipolar disorder. She shared her faith in God as well as her coping strategies.

I was reading this portion today and found much comfort and encouragement from it. I can identify with much of the sentiment expressed in this article. Like Marja, I am learning to trust in God especially in very rough times and I have experienced His love, mercies and faithfulness sustaining me time and again. This has strengthened my faith in God and given me courage to press on daily, living as meaningfully and as productively as God enables me.

The following excerpt entitled "Trust during rough times" has been published by recently and Marja has kindly allowed me to reproduced it here to share with you.

Hope this excerpt will bring encouragement and hope to you too in your struggles, knowing that God loves you, He is with you and will see you through.

Trust during rough times
Excerpt taken from "A Firm Place to Stand" by Marja Bergen published by
Republished here with kind permission of Marja Bergen

Depression can be a debilitating, torturous experience. During such times, I have to work hard to maintain my trust in God. I try not to be anxious but to relax and let God do his work in me and care for me. But it's difficult not to be afraid; it's natural to be afraid.

As my negative thinking takes over, I begin to doubt my ability to complete the projects I'm working on. I fear that friends no longer care about me and won't be there for me. I fear my depression will deepen and I might stop functioning altogether. I can't see how I could ever be cheerful again.

Fear is the universal response to suffering

Philip Yancey, in his book, Where is God When it Hurts? explains how fear is the universal response to suffering. And yet beyond a doubt it is also the single greatest enemy of recovery.' Fear is part of the extreme moods I go through, especially psychosis. The more I give in to fear, the worse my illness becomes. It is important to do all I can to escape it. The best way is to turn to God and trust in God. But it's hard.

David, the psalmist, fought similar battles. I need to pray along with him, "When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God, I trust; I will not be afraid." (Psalm 56:3-4)

Since the dramatic change in my life when I began to follow Christ, my faith in God has remained steadfast. No matter how bad things become, I know God is there. But belief in God and trusting God are two different things. Trusting means relying on someone, having confidence in God's power to help me. I cannot always do this. I have to work at it, over and over again. I have to remind myself to turn to God when things are bad. Even when it seems useless to do so, I need to read my Bible and pray.

A habit I developed a few years ago has stood me in good stead taking at least an hour of quiet time each morning. I start each day with Bible reading, prayer and journaling. These times do much to comfort and strengthen me, whether I'm excessively up or excessively down. Though my prayers are often awkward, though the words come slowly and with great effort, they help keep my focus on God. They help me stay close to God.

One of the symptoms of depression is a sense of hopelessness, the opposite of confidence. At times my trust has faded so severely I thought of giving up altogether. Yet my belief in God does not die, even when God feels distant. In my heart, I cry out, but I don't feel I'm reaching God. I struggle to find the patience I need. "Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." (Psalm 27:14)

And yet, there are times when I struggle emotionally and the reverse happens. God's Word becomes more powerful than it could possibly be during stable times. Bible verses help me find great peace and hope. At such times, I read "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest," (Matthew 11:28) and my entire being finds relief. I feel comforted. I know these words come from a loving God. These deep spiritual experiences sustain me during rough times; they provide memories I can go back to.

I will never forget the day my friend Helen came to me at a time I felt I couldn't go on. She impressed on me how much I had to live for. She told me she loved me. Whenever I need to remember how great God's love is, I think back to that occasion. Speaking to me through this caring friend, God became powerfully real to me. When I am waiting for depression to lift, I focus on how great God's love has proven to be, time after time.

I feel a kinship with King David who, in Psalm 40, wrote: "I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry." Waiting patiently is the only thing I can do as I recover from extreme moods. Remembering that God loves me. Trusting.

Marja Bergen lives with bipolar disorder and is the author of Riding the Roller Coaster (Northstone, 1999). The above is an excerpt from her new released book, A Firm Place to Stand: Finding Meaning in a Life with Bipolar Disorder. She is a facilitator and founder of the Christian mood disorders support group, Living Room ( She can be contacted at

Marja's blog is at and she can be reached at for more information or to speak to your group.

A Firm Place to Stand by Marja Bergen : Finding meaning in a life with Bipolar Disorder

"A Firm Place to Stand is a must-read for Christians who struggle with mental health challenges and the faith communities who minister to them.

For too long, society has misunderstood and feared individuals who live with mood disorders. This book dispels the lingering stigma attached to mental health conditions and encourages people to lovingly welcome the sufferers into congregations by understanding them better and supporting them in practical ways.

Most importantly, for the sufferers themselves, A Firm Place to Stand shows that it is possible to have a mental disorder yet be close to God and derive strong support from a growing relationship with Christ.

In her sincere and candid style, Marja Bergen reflects on her forty-two years with bipolar disorder, showing how faith in God can help a person with a serious illness turn weakness into strength. She describes how God transformed her from an insecure, withdrawn person into a leader, an activist, and the founder of Living Room, the growing Christian support group for people with mood disorders."

Find out more on how you can purchase this excellent book from Marja's new website.

Hope the above article has encouraged you. Do visit Marja's blog, if you can, and get to know her. You will be greatly encouraged by her. Drop her a note, if you can, to let her know how this article has encouraged or helped you. She will be encouraged to know that :)

Thanks again for stopping by! Thanks for all your prayers and encouragements!

Take care and God bless :)

For more Mission 4 Monday posts, visit Peggy at MAZES, MESSES, MIRACLES...aMAZING GRACE. It will be a very encouraging experience for you!

And we know that all things work together
for good to them that love God,
to them who are the called according to His purpose
... in all these things we are more than conquerors
through Him that loved us.
(Romans 8:28, 37)

Post Olympic - the Yang Peiyi song download

update: some diligent netizen scanned different international version of the opening ceremony and found one version (need to register to download) where the song was not spoiled by the commentation (among them the CCTV commentator is regarded as THE most annoying)

While RIAA is fighting with EFF, we have Baidu's mp3 search function.

The famous Ode to the Motherland (video) is made available by netizens -- both the studio version and the Opening Ceremony live version, which seems to have been recorded by someone who attended the ceremony (the disgusting CCTV host had 'added value' with his narrative and made it impossible to strip from the TV recording).

However, a lot more links are available if you use Lin Miaoke as keyword (over 100), rather with Yang Peiyi (4 at this moment). This tells us what most people in China know about this story.


Friday, August 29, 2008

Hamsters, Shells, and Spelling Bees: School Poems

In recent weeks, lots of people have found their way to Wild Rose Reader searching for “back to school” poems.” I have included the links to the following Wild Rose Reader posts from last August and September that have had frequent visitors:

Poetry Friday: Going Back to School with Poetry

Hamster, Shells, and Spelling Bees:
School Poems

Edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins
Illustrated by Sachiko Yoshikawa
HarperCollins, 2008

I thought I’d also write a review of Hamsters, Shells, and Spelling Bees: School Poems, a new I Can Read anthology edited by Lee Bennett Hopkins that elementary teachers may want to add to their classroom collections. This slim volume contains twenty poems about all manner of school-related topics from the school bus driver and teacher, library and art class, show and tell and preparing for a school play--to looking through a microscope, listening to a teacher read aloud, having the measles, and making maps in the classroom.

The anthology opens with a short poem entitled Ready.

by Rebecca Kai Dotlich

Stars sleep as I wake
to this brand-new school day

It ends with Linda Kulp’s True Love, a poem about a child returning home from school at the end of the day to be welcomed by her purring cat. You can read Linda’s poem here at her blog Write Time.

The poems included in Hamsters, Shells, and Spelling Bees are short and easy to read. In addition to Dotlich, the authors of the poems include such well-known children’s poets as J. Patrick Lewis, Jane Yolen, Alice Schertle, and Lee Bennett Hopkins. There are also poems by less familiar writers.

Jane Yolen’s poem Maps would be an excellent one to share with students before embarking on a map-making unit. Here’s how the poem begins:

From Maps
by Jane Yolen

We are making maps:
maps of our classroom,
maps of our school,
maps of our town.
We let our fingers walk
the straight lines
from window to door,
down hallways
that gently curve,
along town streets…

Here’s a haiku that would be good to read to students before a poetry-writing activity. It was written by Alice Schertle, one of my favorite children’s poets.

by Alice Schertle

Pencil stub, I must
ask myself: How many more
poems are in you?

Hamsters, Shells, and Spelling Bees hits the mark for an I Can Read anthology of poems about school for young children. It has a good variety of poem topics and poetic voices. It’s a “comfy pair of slippers” kind of collection that, I think, early elementary teachers will enjoy having close at hand in the classroom--and one that most early readers won’t have to struggle to read independently. Sachiko Yosikawa’s colorful, uncluttered illustrations add to the humor and light-hearted tone of the poems.

At Blue Rose Girls, I have Three Songs at the End of Summer by Jane Kenyon.

The Poetry Friday Roundup is at Charlotte’s Library.

P.S. I’ll be in charge of the Poetry Friday Roundup next week.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Light viewing: Yao and me!

outsdie GFW

inside GFW

Not really related link:
1) 国足欢迎您
2) 谢死猫 ShaBi SBSBSB (in German)

The Puck Drops Soon, Right?!

We've only got a little over a month left until the puck finally drops on a new season, and if we stick together, we'll make it through... ;) Until then, I've got a bunch of things for you to help pass the time for today.

Sid's on another ballot. Click here to vote for him in the Top 49 Men of 2008. (OMG, I nearly hurled when I saw that they included IFHSA™ in the running.)

Good Friend of The Show Frank D. needs our help. His blog,, is in a blog battle with a Senators blog called Sens Army. PENSBURGH MUST WIN!!! You can vote for Pensburgh over at the Log in and VOTE FOR PENSBURGH!!! (If you haven't already signed up, you should because it's free!)

Another good Friend of The Show, Tony F. of The Confluence of the Three Rivers, scored an interview with Penguins’ Director of Content/Publication Joe Sager. Click here to check it out.

Yesterday, I posted a picture of Sid goofing off at a party. It was mentioned that it could have been a photoshopped picture. Friend of The Show Bud located the original picture:

LOL, it's Paris, Britney, and Andy Samburg!!! (Click their names to view the source photos.)

I'm sure most of you have seen this already. Friend of The Show Lauren H. sent this link to travel packages to check out the Pens in Stockholm, Sweden. If you want to go by yourself, you'll need more than $3,000!!! But if you take a friend, the two of you only have to pony up $2,250 each. (My apologies to Lauren, who actually sent this to me a while ago - I kept forgetting to add it to a post!) Check out these pictures of the Globe Arena in which the Pens will face the Sens:

Friend of The Show Melissa G. sent in an article about a PGA FedEx Cup commercial in which Wayne Gretzky offers some advice to golfer and fellow Canadian Mike Weir. Evidently, Gretzky told Weir he should grow a playoff beard - so he did! (Neither one of us could locate the actual commercial, so if anyone finds it, please let us know!)

Friend of The Show AustinLovesCrosby sent in this article that details why Big Georges Laraque chose to accept a deal in Montreal:
Daryl Katz so wanted Georges Laraque here as the Edmonton Oilers' nightly beat cop, the new owner offered the big guy a four-year contract -- one more year than the Montreal Canadiens were pitching the right winger.

Laraque still took the Habs' $4.5-million offer -- mainly because his mother in Montreal wanted to see him play games in the flesh, not on TV.
Aww, that's really nice! I'm definitely not looking forward to seeing him on the opposite bench this season. :(

AustinLovesCrosby also sent in this article written by John Steigerwald (brother of Penguins play-by-play announcer Paul Steigerwald) telling people to get off Mario's back about that ridiculous "Lemieux's Ruse" nonsense. When we discussed it here last week, not one of the responses in the comments or emails that I got were negative towards Mario. In fact, it was quite the opposite. I think Mario could have robbed a bank to pay for the new arena and still be forgiven for it. I don't know who these naysayers are, but evidently they're not Pens fans.

We've got a new member of our Roaming Penguins team making his debut on The Show. Petr Penguin left the home of Stephanie S. in Nashville and arrived in Pittsburgh's South Side...

...where he showed up on Stephanie C.'s doorstep. Her captions tell us what Petr Penguin was up to while they visited:

photo #1: Petr and my books for grad school

photo #2: Petr and his favorite website [snoop: I LOVE IT!!! :D]

photo #3: Petr and a couple of my favorite shirts

Time for another edition of TSCS's Quote of The Day:
"We know that hockey is where we live, where we can best meet and overcome pain and wrong and death. Life is just a place where we spend time between games."

~ Former Philadelphia Flyers Coach (and father of the current Penguins General Manager) Fred Shero

Big thanks go out to Bud, Lauren, Melissa, AustinLovesCrosby, & Stephanie for helping with today's post! :)

Reading list post-Olympic: Tony Blair, Addidas' faceless ad

We Can Help China Embrace the Future - Tony Blair (WSJ)

Addidas' faceless ad - Hecaitou

Other links:

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Thankful Thursday : Because He lives, we can face tomorrow

Dear Friends,

Thanks for stopping by! Thanks for your prayers and encouragements.

♥ I am thankful to God for strengthening me and restoring me from my recent relapse of clinical depression. Around May recently, I over strained myself due to work, blogging, church, family and other commitments. By the time I realized it I was heading towards a burnout. Though I attempted to slow down, I still slipped into clinical depression. Thank God for preserving and restoring me. I am feeling so much better now and will continue to look to our Lord. Thank you for your prayers and encouragements!

♥ With this health condition, the future can at times seem very uncertain and fearful with possible relapses of clinical depression and all the pain and difficulties associated with it. I am thankful to God for the comfort and assurance in His Words of His presence with us, His love for us and His sufficient grace no matter what we may go through in this imperfect world. We have the hope of one day being with the Lord where there will be no more tears, illness and suffering. Meanwhile, He is with us. He loves us and will give us grace sufficient for each day.

♥ I am thankful to God that my illness has drawn me closer to God, to know more and more of His love and mercies, and to be more dependent upon Him. The Lord fills my heart daily with His love and joy so that I can rejoice in Him and find contentment in Him despite my condition.

♥ I am thankful to our Lord Jesus Christ for giving me grace and courage to press on daily because He Lives! I am comforted that in the Bible, God tells us that Christ is risen and He is living today and interceding for us. His Spirit lives in us and will give us grace to live for Him until He calls us home. We are never alone!

♥ I am thankful to God for providing precious people in my life ie. my family, church, friends and blogging friends who love and care for me in their very wonderful ways. These are tokens of God's love for me and I treasure very much.

♥ I am thankful to God once again for all of you, my dear blogging friends and visitors. I have been so greatly blessed by all of you and I thank God upon every remembrance of you. It is wonderful to read of how God is guiding and blessing you in your walk with our Lord and it encourages me in my walk with God too. Thanks again for your prayers and encouragements.

I saw these videos on YouTube for this encouraging hymn "Because He Lives" and it strengthens my heart to remember anew that we served a Risen Savior Who loves us and is in control of all things. Therefore I can face tomorrow, with all its uncertainty, in God's strength and grace, because God holds the future and that makes life worth living.

Christianity Today has a touching account of how this Song was written by Bill and Gloria Gaither during a very traumatic time in their life in the early 1970s while expecting their third child. The timing for another baby wasn't ideal due to various reasons and the thought of bringing another child into the world was taking its toll. But God ministered grace to them and Christ's resurrection, in all its power, was reaffirmed in their hearts. They were assured that the future, left in God's hands, would be just fine.
In July 1970 a healthy baby, Benjamin, was born. Inspired by the miracle of their son's birth, "Because He Lives" poured out of the Gaithers' grateful hearts. The song clearly affirms the hope believers have in Christ. We can face tomorrow, with all its uncertainty, as we realize that God holds the future and makes life worth living.
Because He Lives

God sent His son, they called Him, Jesus;
He came to love, heal and forgive;
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives!

How sweet to hold a newborn baby,
And feel the pride and joy he gives;
But greater still the calm assurance:
This child can face uncertain days because He Lives!

Chorus: Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives!

And then one day, I'll cross the river,
I'll fight life's final war with pain;
And then, as death gives way to vict'ry,
I'll see the lights of glory and I'll know He lives!

This video "Because He Lives" By The Gaither Vocal Band is posted by hoover4000 on YouTube. The 2nd stanza was first written together with the chorus, 3rd and 1st stanza added subsequently:

This video "Because He Lives" By The Gaither Trio 1972 is posted by hoover4000 (with Gloria explaining the circumstances surrounding the time she wrote the words to "because he lives" and then the gaither trio sings it (from 1972)) (This is very touching. Must see!)

May the wonderful reminder that we serve a Risen Savior, affirms the hope we have in Christ. We can face tomorrow, with all its uncertainty, as we realize that God holds the future and that makes life worth living!

May you continue to know God's love and sufficient grace in very special ways today and everyday!

How about you? How has the Lord blessed you through the past week?

Thanks for stopping by. Hope you have a blessed and thankful day!

Robert's Snow: In Memory and Gratitude

Today, on the first anniversary of the death of Grace Lin's husband Robert Mercer, I wanted to write up a post about a very special gift I received in the mail from illustrator Annie Patterson last December. Annie was one of approximately two hundred children’s picture book illustrators who created beautiful snowflakes for the 2007 Robert’s Snow auctions that raised money for the Jimmy Fund and the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Massachusetts. I fell in love with Annie’s snowflake of a young girl holding a white rabbit painted on the background of a snowy winter scene.

Annie, who lives in Alaska, is the illustrator of Whale Snow, which was written by Debby Dahl Edwardson. Fortunately for me, I won Annie’s snowflake in the auction. After learning I had won her beautiful work of art, I left the following comment at this post on her blog Imagine and Create:


I am one happy lady. I won your snowflake yesterday! I knew I wanted it when I first saw it in the exhibit at the Child at Heart Gallery in October. I'm giving it to myself for Christmas.

Thank you so much for helping with Robert's Snow this year--and for making such a beautiful snowflake!!!

Soon after I left my comment, Annie emailed me and asked for my address. Then she sent me a gift: her original pencil sketch for the snowflake.

I was so touched by Annie Patterson's thoughtful gesture--as I was by the generosity of all the artists who contributed their talents to the Robert’s Snow campaign to raise money for cancer research--and as I was by all the kidlit bloggers who helped to spread word about the auctions, especially the fine ladies of 7-Imp…who went above and beyond the call of duty.

Jules & Eisha of 7-Imp

(Click here for a list of the artists and links to the illustrators’ Robert’s Snow features at different blogs.)

Today, I also want to send my heartfelt thanks to Annie Patterson and all of the artists who created snowflakes for the Robert’s Snow auctions in 2004, 2005, and 2007, to Jules and Eisha and all the of the bloggers who helped in our efforts to raise money for the Jimmy Fund and Dana-Farber, and to all of you out there who bid in the auctions.

And today, in memory of my dear friend Robert Mercer, I am re-posting a poem I wrote especially for him.

Things to Do If You Want to Be a Snowflake
by Elaine Magliaro

Fashion yourself:

a bit of lace,


spun in space

of silken ice,








Thank you, everyone.

Robert Mercer and Grace Lin

Silly Sid Stuff

Have I got a few good pictures for you today! Yesterday, good Friend of The Show Jan M. sent me this first one. Way back in the day, it seems that Sid experimented with hair dyes. My guess is that he was attempting to go blonde but didn't realize how much bleach it would actually take to make his naturally very dark hair turn into a buttery shade of gold. Instead, what he got was a hue very similar to the color of my car (Dodge calls it Sunburst Orange Pearl):

Maybe I'm wrong. Perhaps he really was trying to match his hair to his jersey on purpose.

So I found this next gem several months ago after an anonymous tipster pointed me towards a forum on which someone had posted it. Some of you actually may have already seen it. I debated whether or not I should post it since there are two other people in the photo - mostly because I didn't receive the photo from either one of them. Ultimately, I decided that if I blurred out their faces, the picture would be okay to use on The Show. (They both look perfectly lovely - I just didn't want to post their images without their permission.) Anyhoo, when I first saw the photo, I imagined a scenario in my head. To relay my vision to you, I've given the girls fake names - "Jennifer" and "Jessica". This pic was taken at a party, so in my mind, it became a graduation party...
Jennifer: Oh, Jessica! We're about to graduate and go off to college. I'm going to miss you soooo much!!!

Jessica: I'm going to miss you, too, Jennifer! You know, we need to take a really nice picture that we can put in a frame and hang in our dorm rooms. That way we'll always remember to keep in touch!

Jennifer: GREAT IDEA, JESS! Hey, do you think you could you take our picture?

Photographer: Yeah, sure. Hold my drink for a second, would ya, Sid?

Jennifer: Thanks so much. Okay, ready?

Jessica: Ready!

Photographer: All right, girls, say cheese...

And here is what the girls saw when they got their camera back:

If I was "Jennifer" or "Jessica", I'd be more offended by that sweater.

Recently, Friend of The Show Jill E. sent in a picture for us. Recall that we mentioned earlier this month that everything around us reminds us of the hockey we're not yet enjoying. Well, this week Jill was reminded of Evgeni Malkin:
My hockey team was sent to run around Baltimore, Maryland today to participate in our own "Amazing Race". This consisted of many random events and A LOT of running. We ended up finishing over by the Orioles Stadium and the Ravens Stadium where I spotted a Sports Bar named GINO's. I couldn't resist and managed getting a picture as my team ran by.

Sidney Penguin is still making his way around North America. (Hahaha, according to Google Maps, he's traveled more than 9,800 miles!) He came back to the East Coast to visit Friend of The Show Carlie D. in North Tonawanda, NY:

Holy gas guzzling, Batman! Check out that cross-country back-track! Sidney Penguin must drive a hybrid.

Here's a zoomed view of Buffalo and North Tonawanda:

Here's Carlie with our own Roaming Sidney Penguin:

I have that Sidney pennant, too. It's hanging up in our guest room. :)

Finally today, I unfortunately don't know the name of the person who coined TSCS's Quote of The Day, but I figured since today's post was so light-hearted, we'd need a funny quote to close it out:
"Hockey players wear numbers because you can’t always identify the body with dental records."

~ Anonymous
That's gonna hurt tomorrow!

Many thanks go out to Jan, Jill, and Carlie for their contributions to today's post! :)

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Word-Filled Wednesday : I have loved you with an everlasting love

(I took this picture at a Flower exhibition in Singapore)

The LORD hath appeared of old unto me, saying,
Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love:
therefore with lovingkindness have I drawn thee.
Jeremiah 31:3

Nothing is more powerful to engage our affection than to find that we are beloved! Expression of kindness and love are usually pleasing and acceptable unto us irrespective of who expresses it to us.

But to have the love of One Who is altogether lovely, to know that the glorious Majesty of heaven hath any regard unto us, how must this astonish and delight us, how must it overcome our spirits and melt our hearts, and put our whole soul into a flame!

Thank God for His everlasting and immeasurable love for us! It will take me a lifetime to try and comprehend it, and even then I may not fully understand it!

May you continue to know God's everlasting love and goodness in many wonderful ways daily :)

Thank you for stopping by. Thanks for your prayers and encouragements. Hope you have a blessed day!

Back to School: Picture Books and Poetry

Here are links to websites with lists of recommended school stories.

New York Public Library: Back to School

The Horn Book Monthly Special: Back to School

Bank Street College of Education: Back to School Books

Children’s Literature: The Back to School Jitters
Monroe County Public Library (Indiana): Starting School Stories
Allen County Public Library (Indiana): School Booklist
Boston Public Library: Countdown to Kindergarten

Carol Hurst’s Children’s Literature Site: Kids’ Books Set in Schools

Pittsburgh Tribune Review (August 17, 2008): Back-to-school books arrive as summer ends

Reading Is Fundamental: Back-to-School Books

ScrippsNews (August 20, 2008): Classy back-to-school books for kids

Deschutes Public Library: First Day of School

Vote for Long Hair

Because he is the last HK politician with integrity... and unlike the AOs with British passport who can or cannot speak or write proper English, or the faceless "lawyerly intellectuals", or the suddenly patriots, Long Hair is a true patriot, one who first founded an organization called April-5th (I bet) none of his opponents knew what this means, perhaps even today.

For details see here as well, and here.

Early post: why I would vote for Long Hair

How to say "Go Argentina" in Chinese?

click source for details

Apparently it is "KHE YAR LOON KHA KOO ?" according Messi of Argentina. The sound of these 5 words over Beijing Workers' Stadium has propelled Team Argentina to give Team Brazil what Team Brazil had given the China soccer team, 3 goals.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Back from Maine

My husband and I returned last Friday after spending a great vacation week on Westport Island in Maine. The weather was perfect, the scenery beautiful, and the home where we stayed was lovely. Two couples, who are close friends, joined us for part of the week. We have known these four people for about fifty years. (Boy, am I getting old!!!)

Here are some pictures from Maine:

We don’t eat out at restaurants often when we go to Maine--but this year we found two fine places to dine--the Squire Tarbox Inn on Westport Island and Ports of Italy in Boothbay Harbor. The chef at the Italian restaurant hails from Milan--and his food was divine!!!

I spent time shopping at Edgecomb Potters for a wedding gift for relatives, birthday presents for my nieces, and some things for my daughter. I always bring back at least one piece of the beautifully glazed porcelain for myself every year, too. The Edgecomb Potters website doesn’t do the pottery justice. Each piece is handmade and unique. That’s why it’s such fun browsing through their displays for presents. Edgecomb Potters also has lovely jewelry.

Here are pictures of some of the pottery I have brought back from Maine over the years.

My husband and I have spent many summer vacations on the coast of Maine. I love renting a cottage/house and just relaxing, cooking, reading, and writing. This year I didn’t do any blogging from there. We had intermittent wireless connection…and then a computer virus struck. That made our third major computer problem in thirteen months--on three different computers. We also started having problems with our Internet connection at home yesterday. I hope that will soon be resolved. I think we should hire a live-in computer tech!

As you may have noticed, this has been a slow blogging summer for me. I have spent weeks cleaning my basement and closets…and throwing away lots of old clothes and other "stuff" I don’t need any longer. After spending three years as president of our reading council, I am happy now just to serve as a member of the board of directors and as our Speaker Series chair. I’m also completely retired. I will no longer be teaching a children’s literature course at Boston University. Those are two reasons why I could dispose of so much paperwork.

As I wrote in an earlier post, I hope to focus most of my energy and attention on writing poetry for publication. I also hope to get back into the blogging groove again.