Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Feelin' Fall (by Chris)

I knew my brother could draw. I didn't know he could express himself so well through his writing, too. For all you fall lovers out there, this is for you ...

I'm telling you. If it weren't for grilled cheese sandwiches, the world would be a much duller place. I love 'em. They brighten up my day. Delicious. That, and a big old bag of microwave popcorn with a tall glass of creamy chocolate milk. Delectable.

Go ahead. Call me fat. Do it. I'll sit on your face.

Fall, too, is delicious. We're talking weather here. As in the season: Autumn. I love it. I do. Days are still pleasant [temperature-wise], afternoons are perfectly crisp, we can once-again bust out our favorite pair of jeans or ever-faithful hoodie for the evening hours which are always mysteriously cast with an orangish glow to the air. Love that part. Time for frisbee in the leaves and Pumpkin Spice Lattes at Starbucks. The change to Fall means football and the World Series. And the leaves! It's true, the change is over all to quick [at least here in Colorado] but those few weeks are glorious. Maybe that's what's so magical about it — it's only a few perfect weeks long. Everything fits together creating the perfect atmosphere. The smell as you trudge through the fallen crunchy leaves, the beauty of a gentle, brisk breeze rustling a tree at just the right moment to send a shower of color all around you . . .

I've always marveled at the thought of Autumn from a single leaf's perspective. Hanging on the tree all summer, looking down on my arial view of the world surrounding my tree. I'd spend all summer weathering the storms and the rain and wind and hail, doing my best to hang on till my perfect day in September. After the temperature was just right and I had completely changed from green to bright yellow or orange or red, just when the timing was perfect, I'd let go and let the breeze take me. I'd do my best to not just drop straight down, but to instead do all sorts of flips and acrobatics as I swirled and floated downward. If at all possible I'd try to drop just as one of those circular wind patterns was ambling by so I could spin around fiercely like a tornado making the most of my descent. And I'd aim for a nice patch of grass to land in. Somewhere like a back yard or a park where I'd most likely be raked up into a giant pile to provide the perfect natural playground for some kids, if only for a day. That's what I'd do if I were a leaf . . .

Do you ever look up when Autumn's almost over and Winter's bearing down and see that last lone leaf still clinging to a tree? I'm impressed by that leaf. Such perseverance, such dedication. That leaf has held on through a lot. It made it through all the storms and the whipping and the tossing that Autumn had to offer and still held on. It watched as all the other leaves around it one by one let go and made their triumphant descent to the ground above which they'd hung for months. But not this leaf. This leaf hung on. It's almost as if this leaf knew its importance—knew that its determination was warding off the inevitable throes of Winter that lay ahead. It's as if so long as it held on, so long as it remained proud and sturdy like a flag waving to proclaim that Autumn was not yet over, Winter could not set in. I respect that leaf. That leaf inspires me.

Next time you see a leaf fall from a tree, contemplate for a second the reality that for that particular leaf. This is it's big day. This it what it's been waiting for. That leaf will never fall again. And you might be the only one to witness it on the face of the Earth. Ever. Maybe it's all that magic packed into every leaf falling all around us that makes Autumn so great — maybe it's the fact that I was born on September 23, the first day of Autumn — but I suspect it's the former.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Dog Lovers Unite!

I noticed a new link on one of the blogs I regularly visit.

Before April, I'm not sure I would have cared enough to post this link, but then this happened ...

Needless to say, my perspective has changed.

HT: Fay

Monday, September 17, 2007

8 Random Facts About Moi

1. I read magazines from back to front. I don't know why, but it seems that the most interesting features always are at the back. It started with Time Magazine because my favorite feature is the editorial on the last page. Now I read all magazines that way.

2. I hate ketchup. Well, I hate ketchup on everything except grilled cheese sandwiches. I was raised eating them this way and I don't know any other way to eat them. But I still hate ketchup.

3. My favorite movie of all time is Last of the Mohicans.

4. It bothers me if the TV volume is not on a multiple of 5. (15, 20, 25) If I notice that it is, I usually adjust it to be on a multiple of 5. Don't ask ... I have no idea.

5. I have every word to all the songs of Aladdin memorized.

6. I can say the alphabet backwards as fast as I can say it forwards.

7. I have an extra sensitive tongue to spicy foods. I like them, but something that tastes mildy spicy to others is flaming hot to me.

8. I was on the swim team in high school. I was an average swimmer, but for some reason could do amazing flip turns. Too bad there wasn't a flip turn competition. I would have taken the state title.

Friday, September 14, 2007

The Beatles were right ...

Money really can't buy happiness.
Just ask this guy.

So that got me thinking ... would winning the lottery be worth it?

If you want to know my opinion, here it is: I think the lottery is a horrible waste of money and leads to debt, broken homes and massive disappointment. Even for the winners.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Mmmmmm ... pears.

All the time I spend reading blogs has finally paid off! (Pun intended. O.P.J. to my family ... awww, yeah.)

Occasionally when I read comments on other people's blogs, I will click on the person's name just to see where it takes me. The other day I randomly did so and it took me to The PearBudget. Now I have been wanting to find a good budget program for a long time. I've tried Money and Quicken. They are too complicated and too much for my needs. I've tried creating my own budget program, but couldn't figure out how to make it cumulative. I tried not budgeting at all but that seemed dangerous. So I decided the PearBudget was worth a shot.


Here are some good things about the PearBudget:

1. Free.
2. Downloads in a flash.
3. Easy to understand and simple to use.
4. Allows you to manage your money so well you can buy an iPhone.
5. Is compatible with your new iPhone!

The only thing I've found so far that I don't understand is the name. I'm sure there's a perfectly logical (and probably clever) explanation for naming it after a piece of fruit, but I've yet to figure it out.

Does you have a budget program you'd recommend?
If not, try this one! And let me know what you think.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

If I had three thumbs, I'd put them all up.

I just finished reading a book unlike any other book I've ever read.

The Shack by William P. Young. It just came out in bookstores on September 1. Here is the web site. But I'm telling you, the web site doesn't do it justice. Even though it's a fiction book, I have never understood God the way I did after reading it.

Seriously, you need to read this book.
I promise you, you will NOT be disappointed. (Even you, Carolyn.)

After you buy it (because you WILL want to own it) and read it (you'll probably finish it in a night) come back and post your thoughts. I'll be waiting ...