Monday, February 21, 2005

Address Change

I've been feeling a little ornery these days. Please accept my apologies, if I have hurt your feelings. This poem is one I learned when my children were younger. I am relearning it today.

I knew a woman whose name was Horner
Who used to live on Grumble Corner;
Grumble Corner in Crosspatch town
And she never was seen without a frown.

She grumbled at this, and she grumbled at that,
She growled at the dog. She growled at the cat.
She grumbled at morning. She grumbled at night.
And to grumble and growl was her chief delight.

She grumbled so much at her husband that he
Began to grumble as well as she.
And all the children, wherever they went,
Reflected their parents' discontent.

If the sky was dark and betokened with rain,
Then Mrs. Horner was sure to complain.
And if there was not a cloud about,
She grumbled because of a threatened drought.

Her meals were never to suit her taste--
She grumbled at having to eat in haste.
The bread was poor, or the meat was tough--
Or else she hadn't had half enough.

No matter how hard her husband would try
To please his wife, with scornful eye
She'd look around and then with a scowl
At something or other she'd begin to growl.

One day as I walked down the street,
My old acquaintance I chanced to meet;
Whose face was without the look of care
And the ugly frown that had drifted there.

"I may be mistaken" perhaps I said
As after saluting I turned my head!
"But it is, and it isn't the Mrs. Horner
Who used to live on Grumble Corner."

I met her next day and I met her again;
In melting weather and in pelting rain.
When stocks were up, and when stocks were down,
But a smile, somehow, had replaced the frown.

It puzzled me much, and so one day,
I seized her hand in a friendly way and said,
"Mrs. Horner, I'd like to know
What can have happened to change you so?"

She laughed a laugh that was good to hear;
For it told of a conscience, calm and clear.
And she said with none of her old-time drawl,
"Why I've changed my residence, that is all.

"Yes," said Horner, "It wasn't healthy on Grumble Corner"
And so, I've moved; t'was a change complete,
"And you will find me now
On Thanksgiving Street."

Thursday, February 17, 2005

For the lovers of Almond Flavoring

Plantation Almond Tea

3 family sized tea bags steeped in 8C boiling water for 15 mins. Sweeten with 1.5 to 2 C sugar. Stir until all of sugar is dissolved. Add 1/2 C freshly squeezed lemon juice, 1 tsp pure vanilla extract, and 1 tsp pure almond extract (no imitations, please!) Add cold water to make one gallon (about 7 more cups). Serve over ice with a sprig of mint.

Lately I have been enjoyed Bigelow's English Breakfast Tea. It's better than Twinings. I drink my tea black, while I eat a banana. Yum. Or sometimes I will have a Power Bar. I like the Oatmeal Raisin ones.

What did you have for breakfast today?

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Birthday Dinner

Today is Vivian's 17th birthday and here's what we're having for dinner:

Three Color Salad (basil, sliced tomatoes, mozzarella)

Pork Chops (stuffed with feta and spinach)
Baby Bellas
Italian Merlot

Chocolate Fudge Cake a la Cheesecake Factory

Sunday, February 06, 2005

Jehovah Tsidkenu
by Robert Murray McCheyne
Scottish Presbyterian Minister

I once was a stranger to grace and to God,
I knew not my danger, and felt not my load;
Though friends spoke in rapture of Christ on the tree,
Jehovah Tsidkenu was nothing to me.

I oft read with pleasure, to soothe or engage,
Isaiah's wild measure and John's simple page;
But e'en when they pictured the blood sprinkled tree
Jehovah Tsidkenu seemed nothing to me.

Like tears from the daughters of Zion that roll,
I wept when the waters went over His soul;
Yet thought not that my sins had nailed to the tree
Jehovah Tsidkenu - 'twas nothing to me.

When free grace awoke me, by light from on high,
Then legal fears shook me, I trembled to die;
No refuge, no safety in self could I see--
Jehovah Tsidkenu my Savior must be.

My terrors all vanished before the sweet name;
My guilty fears banished, with boldness I came
To drink at the fountain, life giving and free--
Jehovah Tsidkenu is all things to me.

Jehovah Tsidkenu! My treasure and boast,
Jehovah Tsidkenu! I ne'er can be lost;
In Thee I shall conquer by flood and by field
My cable, my anchor, my breastplate and shield!

Even treading the valley, the shadow of death
This watchword shall rally my faltering breath;
For while from life's fever my God sets me free
Jehovah Tsidkenu my death-song shall be.

(Tsidkenu is Hebrew for The Lord our Righteousness)

Saturday, February 05, 2005

Meditations Upon an Egg by John Bunyan

The egg's no chick by falling from the hen;
Nor man a Chrisitan, till he's born again.
The egg's at first contained in the shell;
Men, afore grace, in sins and darkness dwell.
The egg, when laid, by warmth is made a chicken,
And Christ, by grace, those dead in sin doth quicken.
The egg, when first a chick, the shell's its prison;
So's flesh to the soul, who yet with Christ is risen.
The shell doth crack, the chick doth chirp and peep,
The flesh decays, as men do pray and weep.
The shell doth break, the chick's at liberty,
The fleshhh falls off, the soul mounts up on high
But both do not enjoy the self-same plight;
The soul is safe, the chick now fears the kite.

But chicks from rotten eggs do not proceed,
Nor is a hypocrrite a saint indeed.
The rotten egg, though underneath the hen,
If crack'd, stinks, and is loathsome unto men.
Nor doth her warmth make what is rotten sound;
What's rotten, rotten will at last be found.
The hypocrite, sin has him in possession,
He is a rotten egg under profession.

Some eggs bring cockatrices; and some men
Seem hatch'd and brooded in the viper's den.
Some eggs bring wild-fowls; and some men there be
As wild as are the wildest fowls that flee.
Some eggs bring spiders, and some men appear
More venom'd than the worst of spiders are.
Some eggs bring piss-ants, and some seem to me
As much for trifles as the piss-ants be.
Thus divers eggs do produce divers shapes,
As like some men as monkeys are like apes.
But this is but an egg, were it a chick,
Here had been legs, and wings, and bones to pick.

Touche. See Carmon's blog Feb 5 entry for context.