Where did October go?

It has been a crazy few weeks. Friday was the grown-up Halloween party. The DJ was great (in Oakville, people hire DJs for house parties.) So great that, apparently, I thought I was twenty. I ended up dancing for about 6 hours in heels. I now need a new set of knees. Seriously. 

Saturday, I was up early for the Full Circle Live. Move. Be conference at Crossroads. I was groaning when my alarm rang, but it was so worth it. The always terrific Joel Auge was leading the worship and my pal Melinda Estabrooks was the hostess with the mostest. 


The keynote speaker was Lisa Whelchel. Yup, Blair from Facts of Life. She's 50 and has not aged and still has great hair and she rocked Survivor and published something like 750 books, so you kind of want to hate her. But she's actually pretty fabulous. 



She spoke a lot about wearing masks and trying so hard to be perfect that you never make real connections. She talked about how things that crack the veneer (like her fairly public divorce) are a blessing, as they allow you to ask for help and receive the grace already given. 

I was so impressed that I bought her book, Friendship for Growups, and read it immediately. While it is about crafting solid adult relationships, it's also about healing after trauma and resetting one's life course. I'm not sure I would like some of her earlier parenting books but this book shows a wisdom and maturity that only seems to develop with the hard knocks of life. 

The whole idea of functional relationships was further explored by Dr. Merry C. Lin, a clinical psychologist with a book dropping in January. And yes, I ordered that book too. 

One of the highlights of the conference was when Cheryl Weber and Melinda Estabrooks talked about child trafficking. Cheryl discussed some of the important outreach work done rescuing children and Melinda talked about how easily their story could have been hers if, as a young girl in an orphanage in the Philippines, she had not been adopted by her parents. They passed the proverbial hat around the room and raised enough money to free over 80 children.  

And this is, of course, the body of Christ at its best: to recognize and help those people living in the margins not because it's good to help "those people" (read Scary Mommy's post for an excellent take on this) but because we recognize them as brothers and sisters and know that it could so easily have been us.

Sunday, Bruxy hit it out of the park with his talk about Modern Family and how sometimes we, as Christians, need to agree to disagree on some key issues. And the worship band was fabulous as always. Ditto for the Sunday school.

The rest of the weekend/week has been filled with intense Halloween planning. The kids know what they want to be and we simply have to get Serena in line. Clown, hot dog or pumpkin: it's so hard to choose...





Life's a beach

After a whole lot of packing and driving and putting together furniture and dealing with the water, this is what it's all about... ...