Dec 23, 2013

Merry CHRISTmas Memories

Pizelle Making

A little too excited to buy a Gingerbread House kit.  We never do that!!!!!!!!!
We do sometimes go to Trader Joe's in our pj's however. 

Nana & Papa's house for 8 relaxing nights. 

Friend Time

Doing things we don't get to do often...like driving (on Dad's lap inside a guard gated community) and having Spa Days...

... and hiking amongst cacti.

It was not easy leaving.

The place is clean.  I swear I would eat off of any sidewalk in the city and not even think twice about it.  In our 8 days we saw 1 homeless man...and even he was clean.  Clean shaven.  Clean clothes.  He was fully coherent as he accepted the granola bar I offered.  I did not feel threatened or on guard in any way.

Zion's sweet friend, Lilly was telling us how her uncle used to dig through trash cans...collecting them for $.  Zion responded with a knowing nod..."Yeah we have people who do that in our trash cans."

One of the unexpected challenges that has come with living in the city...the way we do...out and about...down on & around skid row often...is the amount of stress that LA's homeless epidemic has brought into Zion's life.  It is not uncommon for us to see between 15-30 homeless people on any given day.  In just about every neighborhood.  In our neighborhood.  Sometimes on our street even.    And many of them are in very bad shape.

A few week-ends ago...right off the freeway exit...a block away from church... was a guy sitting in a lazy boy.  He's there most days.  On his torn and tattered throne.  Right by Denny's.  This one day...he was bleeding from his head.  There was lots of blood as we passed by.

I was not prepared for the amount of trauma seeing this harsh reality of life up close and personal would be to a desert child who was thrown into it.  Heck, it's traumatizing to me.  Navigating who to help...who not to help...how to help...how to be okay with not helping...who to make eye contact with...who not to.  Who to stop and talk with...who to demand that they step away.  Much of the time I roll down my window...but many times it would be foolish...if not dangerous to do so. 

As Scottsdale grew smaller and smaller in the rear view mirror...there were free flowing tears.  She cried for about an hour.  Then she settled down.

The Lord sent me whispers of encouragement along the way.

I remember the feeling I had as we used to ride into Palm Springs.  The windmills brought with them a sense of excitement and so much hope.  For Bradley too.

This time...the feeling was different as we rode past them.

It was as if Bradley and I had a quiet & settled determination to follow the Lord's lead despite all the confusion and uncertainty before us.    As a matter of fact...I don't think my husband said more than a dozen words the whole car ride back to North Hollywood.

I don't know what the future holds...but I know THE ONE who holds the future. 

"Pelagius told me once there is no worse death than the end of hope."-King Arthur

Dec 21, 2013

Nightmare on Elm Street 3 / Dream Warriors

Brad's response...

How much do you think those veins/tendons would have went for on ebay?

I'm sick just thinking about it.

Dec 19, 2013

Sacrificial Love

A few months back I was deleted by an acquaintance...a friend of a friend... during the whole Paula Deen thing.

He deleted me after publicly attacking me on his wall.  To be fair...he didn't reveal my name.  I owned the quotes he was prescribing to a "fb friend" and tried my best to clarify and put them in context.  The deleting came after I tried to persuade him that he was overreacting...misjudging...and being down right mean spirited.   I used facts and I used logic.  An appeal to reason.  Multiple appeals to reason.  To no avail.  This white male was offended by me for all blacks...and for all gays too...which btw...was completely off subject.  He's gay and it seems he had remembered my support of Dan Cathy during the whole Chick-fil-A thing.

After my attempts at persuasion...and a cooling off period...I did receive an apology of sorts.... privately.  It was short and sweet ( mostly addressing his regret at calling me names) and came before a long lesson on tolerance.  Publicly...the attacks on his wall continued though...in the comments section of his post which slammed me.  Oh my goodness...his friends were mean to the bone.  Angry.  Bitter.  Judgemental.   Some were vicious.

I tried to see the past the insults.  I was able to recognize the hurt and fear behind many of the comments.   There were no responses.  Only reactions.

Before long...I could no longer see the comments because I was defriended.

I took it as protection from the Lord and have never looked back.

Our mutual friend mentioned it once.  She handled it well.  At least as far as I am concerned.  She cares for both of us.

Cut to:  Phil Robertson and the whole A&E thing.

I have opinions.  I express them.  People who know me well...know me well.  Those who don't...have a pretty good idea of where I land in many areas anyways.

There is no way that A& E can rightly justify the suspension of a Christian reality star for expressing Christian beliefs to a magazine during an interview.

If anyone has a problem with what Phil Robertson had to say they have a problem with what the Bible has to say.  

If they someone has a problem with the way he said what he said...that person should write him a letter telling him so.

Anyhow....the Lord used a dear friend to encourage me today.  About an hour ago I received a message in my fb inbox.   From a dear, gay, male friend.

what's so strange about our friendship is that you and probably disagree on so many things. But at our core, we are friends with history. I think people can be friends and agree to disagree, right? but i will say that I do think you and I agree on one thing…I do not think Phil Robinson should have been fired for expressing his view even though i don't agree with him. this article is great because it simply points to the fact that he's a reality star and not a spokesperson for A&E. The guy is religious and from the deep south. how could they expect him to think any differently. I think they are so wrong for letting him go.

Back to where we started at the beginning of this post...the quote about sacrificial love.... above.

My friend needs to sacrifice something in order to maintain a friendship with me.  I think he sacrifices his pride in order to love me.  He puts it aside.  By pride...I mean the puffed up part.   I think he says to himself some version of the following....

I don't need to bring this up right now...I don't need to be heard on this right now... I don't need to let her know that I think I am right on this.  I don't need to parade.  I don't need to dig my heels in.  I let all that go in order to love her.  I let go of my comfort zone...I get out of it... so that I may love her.  

And that's what I do too.  I sacrifice all of that ^  in order to love him.

Dec 18, 2013

The Downtown Fiction - Someplace on Earth

Dec 13, 2013

Thanksgiving Memories 2013

The cottage is small...so we ate outside.  It was absolutely perfect.  We were blessed with rustling leaves and all. 

Dec 9, 2013


We have a handful of friends who have come alongside us in assisting Damon over the years...financially and prayerfully.

His most recent fb post causes my heart to skip a beat.  The first instinct is to do.



He replied, "This kind can come out only by prayer."  Mark 9:29















Dec 8, 2013

Running Lines

I walk into the living room yesterday to find Mcabe and Brad running lines.

And then I walk into the bedroom tonight to find them working through the kinks in the scene and adding nuances.

It's times like this when I pause...take a deep breath and know that we are exactly where the Lord has purposed us to be.

Dec 7, 2013

December 7th

Zion attended a friend's "Dress in a Historical Time Period" B-Day party today.

She was a Prairie Girl.

Jemima loves fashion and she loves history.  In fact...she recently told me that she thinks she wants to work in film/t.v. doing Historical Costume Design. 

Even though she's older than the kids who were invited...she asked if she could attend just so she had a reason to dress up.  She researched WWII hair styles...woke up early to curl her bob...and pulled together a look that payed tribute to the Dec 7th / Pearl Harbor Day.

Galilee stopped by for a bit.  She rocked a tribal look...though we don't know what tribe...or from what time period????

Dec 5, 2013

Jeni & Marsha

They just pulled away.  Zion is so depressed.  Two nights is like torture for her.  She says it's mean of us...cuz it's like she's being tempted with fun...but doesn't have enough time to have all the fun she wants to have.

She had a meltdown and wouldn't give Jeni a hug goodbye cuz she was the big meanie who needed to hit the road and took the girls away from playing in the park and away from her!!!!!

I looked at her and said very calmly..."If this is the last time you ever see Jeni..you will forever live with the thought... I should have hugged her."

Through the rearview mirror...I watched as she went back to say a proper farewell.

Then she cried the whole drive home.  

Nov 27, 2013

The Summer Set / Brave

Brave's latest Summer Set video just dropped a few minutes ago. 

Nov 19, 2013

Our Ever Changing Table

1.  Sand

2.  Spray w/ Chalkboard paint

3.  Use chalk

Nov 18, 2013

The City of Angels

Runyon Canyon 

Near the beginning of our 3 mile loop ... we witnessed something that struck us all as..... maybe..... possibly quite troublesome.  A nice looking 30ish year old guy...clean cut...well-groomed... appeared to be contemplating the thought of jumping off a cliff.  He sort of hopped...then skipped straight for the edge...then stopped abruptly.  Then he stood still and stared down.  Then appeared to move towards the edge again...miming a diving motion.....with the thought of jumping?????

Those of us who saw it...made eye contact.  This guy could very well be thinking of taking his own life.  

Brad turned back...caught up with him and asked if he was okay.

Turns out the guy has a guardian angel.  A lady angel who physically protects him from harm's way on a regular basis.  He was merely testing her out.

He was very, very very touched by Brad's compassion.  It had never occurred to him how skipping at a steady speed towards a cliff in such a whimsical yet intentional manner might look to others.  

Only in L.A.

Nov 15, 2013

Moments I'd Like to Remember

I would not trade our days together for any amount of whatever anyone else could offer me. 


We found a new family doctor thru a friend.  We like her very much and she takes cash paying patients!  Love the free market system.


Some days I have to deal with requests like this one....


Zion very much likes to write with the plume pen that she got at the Civil War re-enactment.  


She also likes making Stuffed Peppers and Roasted & Herbed Chick Peas.


There's a National Geographic exhibit currently housed at The Annenberg Space For Photography.  Admission is free and it's pretty wonderful.  After viewing the 1/2 hour documentary that they have playing for visitors Zion seemed very burdened.  Seeing images of suffering around the globe made her contemplate how minor her problems are in comparison.  

P.S.  And it just now occurred to me.  Zion is apparently very attached to that headband.