Two Day Vacation

UPDATE: We are on an extended vacation from cooking! Appliance professional quoted a cost to fix the range that neared its original cost and surpassed the cost of some brand new ranges! Stan has ordered the part online and he will fix it himself. It's supposed to arrive today. Meantime, I have to call a washing machine professional ... washer is out ... again.

When out of nowhere, our stove/oven stopped working last night. That's not exactly true. It would not turn OFF and began beeping incessantly and flashing an "F1" message after it switched from bake to broil for my veggie casserole. Because my wonderful husband knows where all of our manuals are, he found the manual and looked up the meaning of the "F1" message. Although we already knew what it would mean.

"If the fault code and beeps continue, disconnect power to the applicance and call an authorized servicer."

Of course we knew this. It makes perfect sense. Baking season. Gift season. Tight budget season. Added to the year of major repairs to our home/vehicles.

Said servicer doesn't come until Thursday.

I choose to look at it as a two-day vacation from cooking. An excuse for cereal and sandwiches for every meal! The kids will start begging for pizza any minute. I'm trying not to remember that I have a bread maker, crock-pot, griddle, microwave and probably five other heat giving appliances to help us through this time.

Ah, vacation!

Lydia on YouTube

We'll call her Dawn

Chandy always makes up names for the folks she writes about at Cross & Crown. It protects the privacy of the people she talks about. The teens. The illegal immigrants. The drunks. And all of the other children of God she has the blessing of working with every day.

I have a little story about a "friend." We'll call her Dawn because when I see her, I see myself, or what could be me or any of us. We could also call her Jesus.

Dawn and I go back a few years. I met her at the mission. We've visited off and on on Sunday nights. I've given her a few rides. Bought her milk now and then. We ate dinner together once at a local Chinese restaurant when I was writing an article about her for the mission's newsletter. (Not because I just wanted to take her out to eat to visit). Recently, I've seen her walking in my neighborhood. When I see her, I always think of scriptures about entertaining angels, and doing for the least of these. Most of the time, I look the other way.

I know she likes egg foo young and vanilla ice cream. She likes whole milk and she always wears a scarf over her hair. Her purse is a plastic grocery bag. She gave me a dollar once for gas. She believes in Jesus. She wears sandals. And when I see her feet, they at once remind of Bible times and the necessity/courtesy of washing one's feet when entering a home, and also make me cringe because her feet are so dirty and worn. She walks. Everywhere.

I helped her move once.

After that experience, I kind of "dropped" her. The experience was very frightening and disturbing. And it showed me exactly how torturous mental health disease could be in this life. And it gave me a poignant picture of what heaven will be like for people like Dawn when they will not suffer any more. Heavenly!

Dawn is someone who needs help but you can't help her. She's someone who is desperate but survives. She is also funny.

Tonight I dropped her home and found out where she is living (wew. safe place.) She was telling me that recently she was "resting her eyes" in a well lit parking lot of a convenience store. Someone woke her up. I thought she was going to tell me that they wanted her to move, or to give her some money.

Instead, she said this man asked her if she had a quarter.

We both belly laughed. I don't know why it was so funny. Of course, she gave him the quarter.

Not even a tablespoon

Earlier today, I was lauding this new online vocabulary game that awards ten grains of rice to feed the hungry for each correct answer. I played until I won 500 grains of rice, then wondered how much that was exactly. I was very naive thinking it might be a cup or half a cup. WRONG!

Still, this question provided great "Math You See" today. Great application of seeing math work. After Giles also earned 500 grains of rice on the game, he counted rice, ten grains at a time, then lined them up in five rows of ten piles.

We got Lydia and Grant in on the fun. We discussed and saw the rows of rice and the different ways it added up and multiplied to 50o.

Then we got out a couple of rice bowls - a tiny bowl that is probably really a sauce bowl, and a little rice bowl (bought from our local favorite Asian market). Still optimistic. The rice barely covered the bottom of the tiny bowl.

Then we got out the measuring spoons and our contribution was barely a paltry (one of the test words) tablespoon each.

Giles observed that a "vocabulary professor" should get on that game and play for four hours straight and really help people.

Free Rice

Now this is so cool. I get a "click school" email every day that gives us an educational website for the kids to visit. Wednesday is Language Arts day and this week, our click was for the Free Rice vocabulary game for the World Food Programme. (Apparently I live under a rock, since this thing is all over the Internet. But I like my rock).

You play a vocabulary game and earn 10 grains of rice for each correct answer that will go to feed the hungry. How fun. I must confess it was really hard (for me) NOT to cheat! Right answers feed people! However, you get one wrong and another word appears that you might know so you can keep filling your rice bag. The game automatically adjusts to your language level whether you are learning English or are scholarly.

Apparently there's no end to the game and I wonder how it knows what my contribution is because I couldn't find a submit button or anything. Maybe it's just one massive counter tabulating all of the correct words all over the world all day long?

I stopped at 500 grains of rice. It is FUN. But how much is 500 grains of rice? Half cup. One cup. Two pitiful tablespoons? I have no idea.

So there's our math for the day too! Counting rice.

Here's the link to the game and a related article. Play it and feed someone or sometwo or somethree.

Happy Birthday Lydia

A beautiful heart story goes with this picture. Praise God for giving us Joy Neel who took this picture for us Sunday when Lydia committed her life to Jesus.

Let's see if God gives me the words to match my heart to write about this. Then again, this picture might say it all. Thanks Joy.

Sunset Dinner

Took these pictures at Stan's folks house in September.

Preach on, child.

Really could not have said it better myself.