july already?!?

so i have to admit that i often think up clever and witty blog posts several times a week.
but i’m always driving, so i never write them.
something about distracted driving being a bad thing…

but i’m taking some time today to reflect upon the craziness that is my life (at least this week)

i remember back in may thinking “thank you God that it is summer and the programming is over so i can now relax”
and then God was definitely laughing
because summer has been crazy busy

this is wedding season
i’ve had three so far, one tomorrow and one next month
i know that each couple is different (and i have seen extremes in the weddings i’ve had so far this summer), which makes for great stories and unforgettable memories.
as a pastor, i have to admit that i favor weddings that run like clockwork, the ones where people think about every detail possible so that when something goes wrong, no one worries because there is a backup plan. i also like the weddings that aren’t about the ceremony being perfect but instead focus on the fact that they are celebrating with family and friends as they begin a marriage (cause marriage is more than the wedding day).
if you ever ask a pastor if they prefer funerals or weddings, i bet most pastors will answer funeral.
the normal person doesn’t like the sadness at funerals, but we pastors feel called to be there in the midst of grief whereas weddings just irritate us when things get out of control.

i spend way too much time in my vehicle
when i picked out my suv, it had 46,000 miles.
it now has 131,000 miles.
i’ve only had it 2.5 years.
you do the math
but one perk of all that driving is seeing beautiful scenery.
and one perk of driving through scenery on highways in north dakota is that there are few people out driving, so i can stop and take pictures whenever and wherever i want to…
(a sampler of photos available at end of blog)

i’m a hero
at least that’s what i’m told whenever i donate blood, which i did on tuesday
it went well overall
i find it amusing when they cannot find my veins (weird, since i know they’re there…) but once they do, it never takes long for me to fill up the bag
this time i made sure to drink plenty of water several days in advance to make sure i wasn’t dehydrated (last time i was close to not being able to donate)

this week, i decided to be a wanna-be homemaker
what does this mean, you wonder?
well, let me tell you…
– i bought corn, shucked it, boiled it, cooled it down, sliced the kernels off then stuck em in the freezer.
– i did laundry and hung it on the clothesline
– i washed dishes by hand (seriously, using my dishwasher just leaves residue so i use it as a drying rack)
– i bought jars, pectin and fruit which i then prepared to make jelly/jam (i’m not sure what it is since it’s fruit that’s been pureed, not chunks like jam or only pure juice like jelly)…frozen jam, of course since i didn’t want to mess with boiling water
next on the list: re-potting plants. seriously i’ve got one that is looking sad as it’s grown so large that it’s roots are above the soil now…

i’ve become obsessed with npr’s tedtalk radio.
so addictive to listen to podcasts about random topics that make me think
i went to the website and downloaded all that i could
i enjoy the fact that in less than an hour, i can have my mind blown or be pushed to think critically about different things going on in the world or my life in particular
like one day, as i was driving, i was having fun listening to facts like a smile is worth 1000 chocolate bars in helping to improve moods
now i just have to remember to smile everytime i start to crave chocolate and hopefully that will help my dieting…

i’m sure there are plenty other things i could ramble on about, but i have a wedding ceremony to review for tomorrow.
here are the pictures from parts of my life over the last couple weeks:
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