Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Gone West


I had the privilege of being out West the past 2 weeks in the beautiful state of California.  The Katy Perry song "California Gurls" continually looped in my head as I pictured myself living along the coast. I mean, they're undeniable, right?

We began in San Francisco, stayed in Walnut Creek (with family), caught a Giants game (beautiful stadium!), explored the city on bicycles (rented from Mission Bicycle Company), got annoyed at traffic (of course), got lost in Chinatown, checked out Pier 39, rode to the top of Twin Peaks, and even drove to Napa - all within the first few days!

From there we traveled to Manteca where we stayed with friends who were gracious enough to let us crash there for a few days. We got to check out their church, hear about a new church plant, and even assist with questions. We ate (and drank) at a sweet brewery, got everyone to download the "Untappd" app, and checked out an Oakland A's game (nothing compared to the Giants stadium), then drove on down to Santa Cruz.  This was the best way to end our trip. Drinking coffee by the ocean and chatting with a new friend made me feel right at home. I could definitely live here. I could be a California Girl... too bad it's so freakin' expensive!

From there we took our time making our way back to the city by driving up Highway 1 along the coast.
I am a sucker for good road trips and this was by far the best one I've ever had.  We took our time and pulled off the road, checking out a plethora of sea lions and dolphins playing in the water. So cool! We found a cool lighthouse, neat picture-perfect views, and enjoyed one another's company as we drove up the coast.  I felt like I was in a movie!

Like I said, the last day was the best day. We spent an entire day (losing time going back East) traveling home just to get immersed in work and the craziness of life right away.  So worth it.

I've heard that you can tell what you really value by what you spend most of your time and money on. I'm guessing it must be evident that I live for these travel experiences! Can't wait for our next adventure.

The Lord will keep your going out and your coming in from this time forth and forevermore. - Psalm 121:8

Friday, September 6, 2013

Worship at the Falls

Setting Up for our Video Shoot!
A couple weeks ago, we (the Radial Church worship band) headed up to Huntsville, Ontario to help lead worship at a weekend retreat.

On our way, we made a pit stop at Niagara Falls and recorded some tunes:

All My Fountains at Niagara Falls

Enjoy the beauty that surrounds you (whether or not you're at a giant waterfall!).

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Finishing a Book = Detachment Problems

The book I recently finished (last week anyway) is Toni Morrison's "Song of Solomon" and it is one of those books which takes you captive in the strength of powerful words.  I absolutely love Toni Morrison's writing style and subject matter - African American Lit is one of my favorites.  I always go straight to that section in bookstores.

Have you ever finished a book that you were so consumed with that you don't know how to detach yourself from its storyline when it's over? 

I tend to lose myself in things I consume fairly easily (books, food, movies, etc.) and therefore I read the last page and just stared off into space.  This is actually a regular occurrence for me as I attempt to re-enter the physical world, but it always takes a moment.  This book was so consuming that the things I did the following days were always done with the thought that the characters in the book were real - that they would somehow show up and we could talk it out.

I suppose that's what makes an amazing writer. Great words choices.  Powerfully constructed sentences.  Believable characters.

I am truly inspired as I attempt to come up with storylines for my own novels.  The more I read the more I want to write.  It's an amazing concept. 
Up next on the reading circuit? Well, I finished C.S. Lewis's "The Voyage of the Dawn Treader" yesterday (which wasn't quite as difficult to detach myself from the characters for some reason), so I am moving onto a new one: "Bury Me Standing" by Isabel Fonseca.  I can't wait to become a gypsy - err, I mean read about the gypsies.  But who knows?! Don't be surprised if you find me wandering the streets in full out gypsy garb.