Sunday, December 18, 2005

First Post

I've decided to start my 39th year (I'm 38 today) with a family web log. I look forward to posting news and photographs of the family here.

Today was my birthday, although we did most of the celebrating yesterday. The gifts were exciting. I received two laundry containers where I can throw my clothing at night when I undress, and then use these amazing inventions to easily carry my clothing downstairs to the place of washing. I also received a mirror with medicine cabinet to replace the mirror that had been over our sink in one of the upstairs bathrooms. There was also a little storage thing to put in the wall where we may now hang towels and place shampoo bottles. But this was not all. I also received a watch, a warm, white synthetic fleece pullover, a white scarf, a white hat, and an artificial Christmas Tree. I also gave myself several books and music CDs. These included a couple books by historians Christopher Buck and Juan Cole, a book about 'Abdu'l-Baha edited by Steve Scholl, and some books about human nature to possibly use in creating lectures for the class I'll be teaching next semester. The Music CDs include Rimsky-Korsakov's opus 30, a Piano Concerto in C sharp minor that I previously only had as a scratchy version I digitized off an old album I loved as a child. A recording of Carmina Burana by the Illinois Symphony Orchestra, a couple CDs of the New Age group Secret Garden (like Enya), A couple Litolff piano concerti, Sharon Isbin playing baroque pieces on guitar, Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale, the singles of Jesus and Mary Chain, and Orchestra Baobab "Specialist in All Styles". The Rimsky-Korsakov and Orchestra Baobab are my favorites among these, although it's also great to hear the Jesus and Mary Chain stuff from the 1980s again.

Went to church with my parents this morning, but attended Sunday school with them. I did that fairly often when we lived in St. Louis, but since we moved to Illinois I haven't been back so often. Today the topic was forgiveness. There was a fantastic aphorism I hope to long remember shared in this class: "Resentment is like drinking poison and hoping the other person gets sick."

After church we went to watch my nephew Brett play an indoor soccer game. His team is amazingly good. A bunch of third graders who play better than I ever did in high school. Sebastian and Arthur enjoyed watching their cousin Brett play. He had spent last night with us down in St. Louis.

Bought Jeri a ticket to go back to Taiwan for a month (mid January to mid February). She'll be gone from the time I get back from the SSWR conference (Society for Social Work Research) until we pick her up in Chicago just as the CSWE conference begins up there (Council on Social Work Education). It would be nice if we could all go back to Taiwan for Chinese New Year, but our work and school schedules don't allow it. We're planning on all going back in June for a month, God willing.

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