Sunday, June 26, 2011

Weekend happenings

This Sunday began with a video on Mormonism at Church of the Restoration (COTR). The video started about 10 am. We watched about 30 minutes of it and then stopped for a discussion of what we had just viewed. Next the 11 am COTR service featured Mary Rounds and Joy Avery of our congregation talking about the role of women in liberal religion. Following their comments we viewed a DVD on women in religion.

After the service was over I headed for midtown, stopping at the Gateway Market to buy a cake for the afternoon dinner at Marilyn's. Gateway is the only grocery store in north Tulsa. For a long time, north Tulsa had no grocery store. It almost folded after someone went in and held it up at gunpoint. Now there is an armed guard posted at the sole entrance/exit to the store.

After paying for the cake (devil's food with chocolate icing and chocolate chips embedded in the icing), I headed on to midtown. I called Marilyn on the way to see if I could leave the cake with her, since leaving it in a car with temps exceeding 100 degrees did not seem like a good idea. She said I could drop the cake off at her place. I did so , and then went to the Fontana Center for the TAM meeting. (See my Tulsa Atheist Rendezvous blog for what happened at the TAM meeting.)

Following this meeting, I went to Marilyn's. She lives about a half mile away, as the crow flies. Marilyn has been holding a Dream Group -- a place where we talk about our dreams. I very rarely remember my dreams. In fact, since we last met I could not recall anything I had dreamed about. Ron McDaniel was there and he told about one of his dreams. Marilyn also told us about one of her dreams. After about two hours of dreamtalk, but mostly non-dreamtalk, I remembered needed an Insert Card (a volkswalking item). I knew I could get on from the Thornton Y up the street, so I left saying I would be back soon. I went up to the Thonton Y and got the start card and returned to Marilyn's. Soon we were joined by Randy and Dawn. The five of us had BLT sandwiches, followed by watermelon and cake.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Humanist Dinner

Last Wednesday we had a humanist dinner at the Church of the Restoration. We charged $5 per person for a dinner of a salad, spaghetti (with sauce, with or without meat), and a dessert and a drink. It was a good deal. We raised $85 which will be divided equally between the church and HAT.

Today I mowed the front and back yards. Archie had called earlier to see if we wanted him to cut our grass. I told him we would do it ourselves this time.

We had our Food and Fellowship lunch at Chopsticks today around noon. There were ten people at this event.

Tomorrow we start a new topic in the Adult Religious Education portion of our weekly church meetings. We will be viewing videos on Mormons (a six-week program). This is a timely topic since Romney and Huntsman are both Mormons.

Friday roundup

Yesterday we took Luke back to his house following a day at our house. When J came back to the car she had with her Ayla. Ayla came home with us and spent the night here.

Today we took a meal over to Gail in Tulsa. J fixed a chicken dish along with brownies and Jello. I chopped the bell peppers and onions and fixed the Jello. J did the rest. After we left, we drove by the Tulsa Historical Society building and grounds, so that Ayla could see the location of Music at the Mansion that we attend periodically.

Next we drove to the McDonald’s on Yale Ave. for lunch. This McDonald’s has a large playroom for kids. Alya played on the equipment as J and I ate lunch. After lunch we returned to Sand Springs.

We had earlier agreed to take Ayla and the two boys who are grandsons of our neighbor to the south to Bartlesville. Actually Ayla rode with us while the two boys rode with the Lortons. We arrived first. The Lortons had some delay but showed up some twenty minutes later. The kids had fun at the “Kiddee Park” in Bville. It is located in Johnstone Park. It was getting dark, and I wanted to get back home before it got much later.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

We are back from Springfield

Monday morning we left for a trip to Springfield. On the way, we drove through Joplin and saw the damage from the tornado of May 22 which cut a path through the town 3/4 of a mile wide and six miles long. The number of dead was around 152. At times all you could see was rubble in whatever direction you looked. Churches, the high school, the Home Depot....all smashed.

For lunch we ate at a Bob Evans restaurant. All the restaurants were full as might be expected at 12:30 on a Sunday afternoon. We soon left and drove on into Springfield. We snaked across the divergent diamond on National Avenue and made our way to The Abbey at Fremont and Erie. My parents were both doing well. My sister Paula was there at the time. For our evening meal we went to the Golden Corral.

My friend with lung cancer had a successful surgery and is now on the mend. We hope to be able to resume our piano duet playing in the near future.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Lost souls

I came across these words in a book by Rob Bell, Love Wins: "My wife, Kristen, and I often talk about raising our kids in such a way that they have as little as possible to unlearn later in life."

One has much to learn in life, but there is considerable to unlearn in life also. Is anyone so lucky that all of their major precepts turn out to be correct? I doubt it. You may walk down a path and come to a conclusion that it only leads to a dead end. When you reach that realization, you have to backtrack. Most likely you will have several things to unlearn.

I think we all know what I am talking about. However there are some people who for whatever reason swallow everything they have been taught in an uncritical way. These are the true lost souls.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Mid-week summary

Earlier this week, on Monday to be exact, we took Luke to Incredible Pizza near Memorial and 71st. We spent about three hours there. First we ate lunch. They have many kinds of pizza there out on a serving line. You help yourself when you want something to eat. There are three large seating areas for dining. Once we had eaten, we went to the games area. The previous time we were there, you would receive tickets based upon how well you played a game. This time, the tickets had been replaced by eTickets, or electronic tickets. As you pay to enter, you are given a plastic card the size of a credit card. You swipe the card to play a game. A computer keeps track of your score and how many tickets you won. Before you leave, you can redeem your tickets for prizes.

In addition to all the games inside the store, there is a nine-hole miniature golf course, a race track for small cars (which you actually get in and drive), and bowling. I think the building was formerly a Venture or Target store. Luke appeared to have a good time there.

Today we expect to have both grandkids while the two parents visit the doctors.

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Weekend Roundup

Last Friday, J and I went to the dentist for a sixth-month checkup. Everything checked out OK for the two of us.

The next day we had a Humanism and the Arts program at Restoration. Vanessa called me around 5 pm and said I could come by her house to pick up the key. Vanessa lives on the north side of Sand Springs, not far from my son Nick. I left the house and drove to Vanessa's. She was working out in her front year.

When I arrived at the church the SOS group was still meeting there. SOS is an alcohol recovery group led by Larry Hochhaus. Larry is also a member of the church. I brought the refreshments inside. Although eight members had signed up to perform, three were no shows. Only five people performed. The first two people on the program were no shows. Joy had called me hours earlier to let me know she would not be able to be there. Vanessa was supposed to come later but never did. I led off the show playing a piece by a Russian composer with a title something like "Pioneer Campfire." It is a piece I found in a book I bought some forty years ago when Russia was at that time known as the Soviet Union. The book has some twenty songs in it. I enjoy playing them. The book is written in the Russian language. Next Barbara Frey read a poem she had written a few decades ago. She spoke of her time as a teacher. Barbara is now 84 years old.

Next was Marilyn Clarke. She read three poems by Billy Collins. Collins is one of my favorite poets. I always enjoy hearing his work read aloud. Following the Collins verse, Gail and I performed a duet at the piano. We played "Heliotrope Bouquet" by Scott Joplin. Larry Roth, usually a reliable performer, was to finish reading his ghost story, but he did not show.

Today I attended the service at Restoration. The were nine of us there. The number in attendance is much smaller than some Sunday School classes at other churches, but that does not slow us down. We keep plugging right along.

This evening we attended a gathering of the Methodist Church at their new Family Life Center in south Sand Springs. The church has a new minister. The Methodists rotate ministers every few years. Now was the time for a new minister. He preached his first sermon in Sand Springs today. He comes from Mangum, OK. It is in the far southwest of the state .

Luke is spending the night with us tonight. We will have him with us for much of the day tomorrow.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Two events today

The alarm went off around 7 am this morning. Normally we don't set an alarm, but this morning we wanted to go on a volkswalk in downtown Tulsa. The start point was near the old Union Station (now the Jazz Hall of Fame) on 1st Street. After registering, we struck out on the downtown 3.1 mile walk. The walk was billed as an Art Deco walk. The walk passed by many buildings noted for their use of the Art Deco style. Many of the buildings in downtown Tulsa were built during the heyday of Art Deco. After finishing the walk, we went to a McDonald's for a sausage and egg McMuffin.

This evening was "Humanism and the Arts" at Restoration. There were just five of us there. I played a Russian song at the piano. Gail and I played a duet by Scott Joplin, "Heliotrope Bouquet."

This week I learned that a good friend of mine has lung cancer. She is just 60 years old and has never smoked. What a blow!

Friday, June 10, 2011

Chautauqua this week

We went to two presentations of Chautauqua this week. On Monday night we saw a portrayal of D. W. Griffith, the founder of Hollywood, and last night we saw a portrayal of Paul Robeson. Robeson is best known for singing "Old Man River" in the musical Showboat. The theme this year is the early days of Hollywood. "Louella Parsons," gossip columnist, spoke on Wednesday night. Tonight the speaker will be "W. C. Fields." "Walt Disney" will speak Saturday night. I have other obligations for the reminder of this week and will not get to hear additional talks. Attendance is down this year from past years.

"The most interesting parts of your life, you can't write about" is a comment I hear often from Mrs. N. That is true. There is a lot happening that I cannot mention in this blog. So for the time being, I will just have to sit on this information.

Tuesday, June 07, 2011

Strange religion

The following quotation comes from an article titled “Texas Gov. Rick Perry Partnering with New Apostolic Groups for Houston “Call to Prayer” written by Rachel Tabachnick.

If readers are tempted to laugh or snicker at groups forming 24/7 prayer vigils to protect the interstates of America or hold ceremonies divorcing Baal, please think again. The apostles and prophets have become a major force in American politics and both Republican and Democratic political candidates are rushing to curry their favor. They will undoubtedly play a role in the selection of the Republican candidate for president.

You can read about the New Apostolic training in prophecy, strategic level spiritual warfare, and demon deliverance as well as other scary concepts by reading this article.

Saturday, June 04, 2011

Saturday Night Live

Tonight we went to a live performance of Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew on the grounds of the Philbrook Museum. We had a picnic dinner which we brought with us. We met Marilyn of the Humanist group there. We left at intermission in order to get back and get some rest before church tomorrow. As we were leaving I was unable to see the curb, and I took a spill. Fortunately, there were no broken bones -- just skinned knees. My night vision is getting worse.

Friday, June 03, 2011

Luke and Ayla

This morning we got up early and drove over to Nick's and got Luke and Ayla. We went to a donut shop for breakfast. Luke was pretty well behaved, but Ayla threw a fit. Jen has an appointment with her doctor at St. John Medical Center. Nick called a few minutes ago and said they had finished the meeting and would be eating next.

Thursday, June 02, 2011

Garden report

Tonight I printed my talk for this coming Sunday at Restoration. Gail and I will be playing "Plymouth Pride," and I will be delivering the message. Barbara Frye will be reading the children's story.

In my garden, my squash plants are looking good. My tomato plants also look good, but my two topsy turvy plants (tomato) are just so so. I also have some cucumber plants which seem to be doing fine. The beans are doing well also.

Luke and Ayla spent the night here a few days ago. We will have them again tomorrow.