Church of The Misfits

23 Oct

I attend the church of the misfits

The prodigal sons returned,

The church of the rejected,

Divorced, addicted, and the spurned.

 

In the pews beside me are sinners,

Behind were previously interred,

We seek not the church of the perfect,

But the church where our sins are deferred.

 

Beware those who expect perfection,

We’re the kind who admits we’ve sinned,

And embrace the fact that God loves us,

All our debts He will rescind.

 

I attend the church of the misfits,

The prodigal sons returned,

The church of the Father’s banquet,

Extravagant love unearned.

 

Me

21 Apr

Image

My Paintings

18 Mar

I don’t have a lot off places I’ve showcased my paintings here lately so I thought I’d dust of the ol’ blog and throw a couple of the paintings up!

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“A Painting That Looks Like Me”

23 May

Every painting has a story to tell and a story yet to be told…

     When we moved into the current home we live in now I had only two children, two rambunctious boys who deserved a “boys” bathroom all to themselves.  I picked out a rocket themed  curtain and rugs then set to work on a series of paintings that matched the decor.  I incorporated a couple of astronauts that favored my children and they immediately picked up on who was who in the artwork.  I also included an alien who snuck peaks at them from behind the rings of planets.  The boys declared that I was the alien.  I REALLY enjoyed painting for children’s spaces. 

    I had alway had the notion that children’s illustrations made for GREAT art for children’s rooms.  I had these daydreams about mutilating a Curious George book so I could matt and frame some of the art captured between the pages…  But I started understanding that children REALLY liked paintings that featured other children, especially when there was a resemblance to themselves. 

   Then my daughter entered the picture… quite literally.  In a previous blog post I have complained about how few dolls there were that looked like my daughter.  In art for children there is even less. As a painter I can change that.. and you can help.  Starting June 1st I’ll be opening up an Etsy Shop to sell prints of my artwork.  I also have a Facebook Fan page where I am collecting ideas for paintings.  I have only a few paintings featuring children who are black, but month by month I hope to change that.

     What kind of paintings would you like to see?

2011 Kids Summer Planning Template

5 May

I just spent the evening on Power Point.. Oh how I LOVE using power point as a parenting tool.  Summer always seems daunting to me, especially with three kids.  By nature I am not a planner… but I am the queen of good ideas!  This lethal mixture usually results in a plethora of great ideas that never sees the light of day.  I love to greet each day with an open mind and the attitude that whim and circumstances will largely dictate what we as a family on Summer break will do… but the end result of this attitude usually results in a Summer of WAY too much TV watching, sadly reading/educational/activity goals go largely unfinished and I hear” “I’m bored” A LOT.  I DO believe there is such a thing as over planning a child’s Summer so I don’t want to go to that much of an extreme. But there is a happy middle in there somewhere and I think it will help us have a happier Summer.  Last, but no least, the end of the Summer usually marks the time I march a particular child of mine in to the doctor’s office and demand to know what is wrong with this child!!!  Over the years I recognized that while I’m more of a laid back person who resists schedules, this child thrives off of them, and in order to keep them calm, NEEDS a schedule.  The unknowns creat a great deal of anxiety in this one’s brains and the results drive the rest of us bonkers!!   This year I don’t want my Summer plans and goals to fail but I recognize that WILL be the result if I FAIL TO PLAN!!  I don’t want a child who’s anxiety over not knowing what the day will bring drives them into a manic state and result in meltdowns for all of us. I want a child who knows what’s coming up next and can relax and enjoy the fun with us.  I want to be able to interact with other parents adrift in this sea of summertime blah’s and recognize that requires a little preplanning!   That brings us to Power Point and it’s awe-inspiring ability to give birth to spiffy looking schedules,  graphs, and charts… How could a mother live without it?!  It occurred to me that what I created could be VERY useful for many parents so I thought I’d create links to my kids’ 2012 Summer Planning calendar template:Summer 2012 planner

I Have A Dream

17 Jan

Dr Martin Luthar King Jr’s “I Have A Dream” speech:

“I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languishing in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. So we have come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

In a sense we have come to our nation’s capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.

It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked “insufficient funds.” But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. So we have come to cash this check — a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice. We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quick sands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God’s children.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro’s legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. Those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

But there is something that I must say to my people who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice. In the process of gaining our rightful place we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred.

We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force. The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. They have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom. We cannot walk alone.

As we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead. We cannot turn back. There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, “When will you be satisfied?” We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied, as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the Negro’s basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their selfhood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating “For Whites Only”. We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream.

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. Some of you have come from areas where your quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive.

Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed. Let us not wallow in the valley of despair.

I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident: that all men are created equal.”

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification; one day right there in Alabama, little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today.

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight, and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.

This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the South with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

This will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with a new meaning, “My country, ’tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, from every mountainside, let freedom ring.”

And if America is to be a great nation this must become true. So let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire. Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York. Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!

Let freedom ring from the snowcapped Rockies of Colorado!

Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California!

But not only that; let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia!

Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee!

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! free at last! thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

2010 in review

2 Jan

The stats helper monkeys at WordPress.com mulled over how this blog did in 2010, and here’s a high level summary of its overall blog health:

Healthy blog!

The Blog-Health-o-Meter™ reads This blog is on fire!.

Crunchy numbers

Featured image

A Boeing 747-400 passenger jet can hold 416 passengers. This blog was viewed about 1,600 times in 2010. That’s about 4 full 747s.

In 2010, there were 23 new posts, not bad for the first year! There were 83 pictures uploaded, taking up a total of 37mb. That’s about 2 pictures per week.

The busiest day of the year was November 9th with 122 views. The most popular post that day was Why I flew all the way to Toledo Part 2.

Where did they come from?

The top referring sites in 2010 were facebook.com, mail.yahoo.com, babyboltes.blogspot.com, healthfitnesstherapy.com, and mymindonpaper.wordpress.com.

Some visitors came searching, mostly for black barbie dolls, black barbies, african american christmas baby dolls, african american baby dolls with hair, and black baby dolls with hair.

Attractions in 2010

These are the posts and pages that got the most views in 2010.

1

Why I flew all the way to Toledo Part 2 November 2010
4 comments

2

Diversity at the Dinner Table November 2010
6 comments

3

Black Baby Dolls October 2010
5 comments

4

Domestic (Why the Versus?!) International September 2010
2 comments

5

Talking To Kids About Racism Part One December 2010
1 comment