Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The Trend that never Fades

There are some lucky people in this world who can see 20/20 without assistance. However, most of us need a little help. I am in the need help category, or more specifically, the contacts group.
However, there are days when my eyes are having none of it. So I dig through a drawer for my glasses case, rub the lenses on the edge of my shirt, and spend the day trying to avoid the temptation to push them into place by jabbing my index finger against the bridge.
I don't like these days because my glasses are, well, lame. But today I got to order new ones! They're super cute and trendy and will make me look eclectic-er...(eclectic people can make up words, now and then.)
Which got me to thinking about a verse: Isaiah 61:10 "I delight greatly in the LORD; my soul rejoices in my God. For has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels."
For years when I read this verse I pictured long loose biblical garments and maybe a Mary-esque headscarf. To be honest, as much as I want to be clothed in salvation and righteousness, it's a kind of dowdy picture.
Then one day, it hit me. These are for the soul (and arguably the physical being as well) the height of attainable loveliness. These are the D&G or the Chanel of the spirit world. When we walk around in salvation and righteousness, we're not frumpsters with a Mona Lisa smile. We're "Look out runway 'cuz here we come" stellar. Jesus is the hottest name brand ever.
My new glasses are not that fancy, but they're certainly more along the lines of salvation than the old ones. They make me look better than I would without.
Oh, man, the analogies of being able to see more clearly are pummeling my head, but I'll stop here before I get carried away.
Thank you, Lord, for arraying me in righteousness and salvation. I certainly can't do it on my own and you are so good and so faithful to give me, not just any old covering, but the most beautiful adornments imaginable. You are a good, lovely and generous God.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

What have I done?

So, this year, for the first time ever, I dyed my hair. I went fire-engine red for a while, which was fun. Then I went burgundy, which was also fun. Then, on Sunday, I was ready to go blonde again. Well, it turns out that is not as easy as going dark. I freaked out a new hairdresser when I asked her to make my wine-colored (or grape juice colored, depending on your denomination) tresses go back to their natural color. She wasn't okay with bleaching it and recommended I stay with purple because it looked nice. Yeah, not happening.
So, I went to the CVS and bought this stuff called Color Oops. It smells like a fart died, but it did get a lot of color out. It's now the color of a penny.
Today, I went to a professional again (different place) and she said my poor, abused hair needed at least a week to recover and then she would work on it. It's dry and smells.
That made me nervous. What have I done to my poor head? I felt guilty and scared and bought some very expensive conditioner. But the truth is, I can't ever undo it. The hair is changed. The color may be made to look similar, but it won't be my color.
It was a good learning experience, and a small lesson of what life is like. Things happen that can't be undone. I make mistakes, and then in trying to fix them, I could very well make them worse.
Which is why I'm grateful for this promise today, found in Matthew 10:29-31 "Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father. And even the hairs of your head are all numbered. So don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows." (emphasis mine.)
How cool is that? I am worried about my poor copper-penny hairs, and so is God. And while I have caused the damage, He still knows the number. I can't bleach his love out or cover it with purple so He loses track of the nine-hundred-and-forty-second hair from the left.
And in life, there is no mess too big OR too small for God to care about. God, Creator of stars, suns, moons, galaxies, ants, zebras, leaves, lightning....God loves you so much, He watches you sleep at night, gathers your tears, relishes your laughter, and even knows the number of hairs on your head, no matter what color they are today.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Sitting and looking up

You know how sometimes you feel like you're flying along? God is your co-pilot. The sun is smiling on your heavenly day. You even dip your head and wave at others as you pass by, maybe offer a word of encouragement that they too can be lifted on a holy breeze?
And then, out of nowhere, splat. Chin in the dirt, you look up and think--or if you're really brave, say-- "God, what just happened? I thought we were flying? Why did you let me fall?"
I had a moment like that today. I had been so focused on flying that I didn't even notice when I lost altitude. I'm not sure how long I'd been standing here, mistaking for a holy breeze the air stirred as I madly flapped my arms, before I overbalanced. Okay, maybe I did notice something wasn't right, but I thought if I ingored it, it would go away. Like a zit.
It wasn't until I was scrubbing at the dirt on my chin that I had to own up to the fact that I was sitting, and the scenery looked uncomfortably familiar. I finally, quite literally, cried out to God. And He has been sitting with me since, kissing my scrapes.
At some point I had stuck out my butt and boxed him away from the wheel (or whatever mechanism planes use to steer). I have been so focused on "being joyful in God's will" that I stopped being real in God's presence. I stopped telling Him when I was hurt. That I didn't know where we were going and it scares me. That I can't do this by myself.
Today I finally saw the dirt on my face and was ashamed. And comforted. You see, I'm not supposed to be able to do this by myself. God is. And He doesn't mind me being scared. I think sometimes He's like a date on a roller coaster--he likes that in the dips I cling so much tighter. I don't like the dips at all. But I will hold on, because like it or not, they're coming. Heck, they're here.
My Jesus, cling to me. I need your love. Neeeed your love. I need you to hold me and tell me it's okay and remind me you're in charge. I need you to show me, visibly, physically, that you love me. Be demonstrative. Be big. I need you so. All my love. And, once again, all my trust.

Friday, June 25, 2010

Aim Low.

So, I plan to rent two movies tonight. More than plan, I already reserved them online. I have moderate hopes for one of them, and have actually gotten bad reviews of the other. I hear it's cheesy from people who roll their eyes and scoff. They are probably right, but since I am cheesy too, I thought it might still be interesting.
Now, why, you ask would someone be willing to jeopardize the time and money to see a movie that has a greater than 50/50 chance of disappointing them? I'll tell you why. Because I can rent it for $1. Thank you, Redbox.
Not long ago, it cost $4.79 to rent a movie from Blockbuster and then I almost always qualified for the late fee. One must be a lot more careful when investing that kind of moolah in a flick. But heck, a dollar? I can swing that. My level of satisfaction only has to be 20% of what a Blockbuster movie would achieve for me to get my money's worth.
Three cheers for low expectations! Seriously. If I make it through the opening credits, that's a win! If I watch with mild interest while I paint my toes, double win! And if, by some unexpected twist, I find it genuinely interesting, I'll be like Portugal vs. Korea.
I know the greatest things in this life are worth fighting for. I celebrate that. But it's Friday afternoon, I have a new bottle of Zin, and as soon as I swing by the Kroger Redbox, I'll have a cheesy movie. And what goes better with wine than cheese?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Moving On

So, Ben & Jerry's makes this ice cream called Everything But The... and it is amazing. If gold were a flavor, it wouldn't be as good as this ice cream. It's so good that after I had it for the first time, I had a dream about it. A vivid dream. For days, my chief desire (...aside from glorifying God, of course...ahem) was to break the creamy surface of a fresh pint with my spoon.
It was...not a good thing. I had to quit cold turkey before I got seriously, end-up-on-the-street-because-all-my-money-feeds-my-ice-cream-habit hooked.
After a few weeks, it still sounded good. I could still tell you all the different kinds of candy that flecked the ice cream. I still talked about it more than my family.
After a few more weeks, it sounded good, but I didn't think about it often.
Today, I'm proud to say I'm four years clean. (Of only that flavor mind you. Let's not go crazy.)
I don't remember what's in the ice cream. I remember it being good, but my tongue has forgotten the flavor. I don't long for it. And I'm so glad!
Can you imagine if memories didn't fade? If we could recall all we've done with flawless clarity? Man, there are some moments I cherish, but the color in those memories tends to be more robust. Perhaps because I take them out to look at them more. But there are memories that I am happy to let disappear like a Polaroid left in the sun too long. It sure makes living without much easier.
Paul said it well in Phil. 3:13ish-14 "But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus."
Thank you, God, for memories. For the way the smell of Monster makes me think of holiday races and the fake coconut smell in suntan lotion recalls Hawaiian beaches. For photos of loved ones, for Amy Grant Christmas CD and the years of trees and presents it embodies. For scars.
And thank you for the memories, experiences and moments that fade. That I am not burdened by the perfect recall of all I've done. That I don't remember Everything But The... You are a genius and I'm so glad you made our minds the way you did. May I treasure the good times and forget what is behind.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Psalm 18:1-3

1 I love you, O LORD, my strength.
2 The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.
He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
3 I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise,
and I am saved from my enemies.

Monday, June 21, 2010

There's Music in Them Thar Hills

So, I was in the North Georgia mountains this weekend. A lake is nestled quietly between hills that are too many shades of green to accurately describe. The silver blue of fading day shimmers off the lake until the only lights left are the stars and the occasional glow of a house perched among the trees like a firefly.
There is almost no way not to be relaxed there. Even the boat cops joke with you about farmer's tans when they pull you over.
Being as we were in the hill country, sittin' around playin' corn hole and spades, I got a hankerin' for some good ol' bluegrass. First thing I did when I got home was take a nap. Second thing was to hop on itunes and look for the essence of the weekend in song.
Enter, banjo.
It is impossible to be tense when there's some skilled banjo pickin' goin' on. Makes a soul want to drop the g's on present progressive verbs and stretch vowels like homemade caramel.
I love the power of music to affect spirit. It touches us in places words can't access. It crosses between the physical world and the spiritual and can draw us to places we'd never find without a trail of notes to lead the way.
My new bluegrass songs draw me to the quiet, simple times. To a life that isn't go, go, go. Where the fastest thing moving is the banjo man's fingers. But boy, can they fly.
So, even while I'm pressing near ten miles over the speed limit, my soul is chuckin' a bean bag at a big painted board that done-been cut with a hole. That thur's the three point hole, ya see. If'n y'all git the bag in thur, yer durn good at corn-holin'.
Thank you, God, for music in all it's forms, and especially--today--for the banjo.

Friday, June 18, 2010

God bless the (Insert country of origin)

I think it's grand to see lovers of their country turn out in face paint and wigs at the Olympics and the World Cup. Where we come from largely defines us in ways we don't always recognize, some good and some not so good. It's important to recognize the negative, but just as important to be grateful for the positive.
In an age when it seems to be going out of style, I admit: I am a patriot. I get a little misty when I hear that Lee Greenwood song and I say prayers for soldiers in the airport. I would have cheered on the US of A today as they played Slovenia (what was that ref thinking, anyway?), unfortunately, I was busy being gainfully employed.
However, I have found the time to watch England play Algeria...without inhibiting my professional performance. A British commentator noted that Algeria is playing, and I quote, "above their station."
I know what he meant. They're ON today. They're all systems go. They're catching some breaks. It wasn't that he said it, since I agree, it was the phrasing.
I don't think in stations. Here, in the US, we don't have stations. We don't have nobility who are considered innately more valuable. We tell our kids they can be anything they want, whether they grow up in the sticks or the city, with government assistance or a with a 48-piece set of silver spoons, forks and knives in their mouths.
I'm glad for that. While it may not be strictly true--no matter how on I am I will never be a singer. or a dancer. I've made peace with it, though--I love that we offer that opportunity. That encouragement. That equality. I love that, because of those who have fought for our nation, for women's rights, for civil rights, that I am not considered more or less than any others just because of how God designed me. I love that our soccer team has different colors of hair.
Because of the basic tenet that all of us are created in God's image (or as our forefathers said, all men are created equal), I don't think God loves the US more than any of His other nations. But, I feel very blessed that he set me here.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Get behind me, hair

You know how sometimes a week comes when it seems like your head is glued to the pillow and not even the hyperactive sun can break the bond? When the radio man yells at you the first time the alarm goes off, so you hit snooze and then he yells a again so you give him one more chance? When adding water and coffee to the pot in the right places takes way too much fumbling and thought? When you bow your head to pray, and stare blankly at your lap for undefined periods of time instead?
Well I've had one of those weeks.
It takes so long to do the routine that I've been running late. And, since my focus is mostly on keeping my eyelids propped open I am not all that concerned with glam.
Weeks like this make me so grateful for hair bands. Instead of thirty minutes with a flat-iron, I spend five. So what if the results are a lopsided bun. I don't have to see it.
I have got no spiritual tie-in for this. If y'all can see one, please share. I'm just happy that my hair is still out of my face!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

All for One, One for all

My small group has been going through Ecclesiastes. We were due to finish this week, and in an effort to implement what we've learned from the Lord's word, we decided we ought to eat, drink, and be merry, potluck style.
From seven until just after nine, the conversation flowed like wine, the wine flowed like honey, and the food was as rich as it was bountiful. There was colorful, diverse, and continuous conversation, a mosaic bound by a love only found in community.
It was as if the whole night wore a hazy glow, a moment when the world and its trials, its distractions, its limits, wasn't invited. It was just us and an age-old tradition of gathering over good food and being women together. Sharing that piece of our spirit that is universal, a reflection of a beautiful God. These are the moments, the memories, that time cannot fade.
I am so thankful for these times. They make me wonder if they would be as special if they weren't so rare. But I think they would. I think that sense of oneness is what the church, what humanity, was meant to feel. Oneness with each other, oneness with our Maker.
Thank you, God, for my Smallies, and for the moments that exist in dimension untouched by time.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


So, if you could build muscle by reading, I would be one happy beefcake. Instead, I drag my sorry self to the gym and run in place while listening to music at a decibel meant to drown out my thoughts, which rotate between "Oh my gosh I'm bored," and "Oh my gosh I'm really bored."
The feeling just after a run is amazing, but the thirty minutes themselves ooze by at a rate only slightly faster than I am, or my name ain't Slowsky McGee. But, there are few things that make it way more appealing.
1) knowing other people have to run, too
2) a good show on the TV with at least semi-accurate sub-titles (though the really bad ones can be hilarious)
Which is why I love the World Cup! Though I'm a southerner these days, I was raised on soccer and fresh mountain spring water in the lovely Pacific Northwest. We had football there, but soccer always drew a bigger crowd.
So, every four years, I bust out my stadium chair and do a little spectating as some of the world's greatest athletes face off for their countries honor. And if I can time my gym visit to coincide with a match, I feel that much more a part of it. A solidarity with those men, halfway around the world, who are sweating at the same time I am.
It's inspirational on a lot of levels. These people have committed their lives to achieving excellence. They sacrifice physically to do so. There is no aspect of their lives that isn't in some way impacted by their devotion to a goal. When you think about training for four years to spend a mere six weeks in pursuit of your That's commitment. Imagine if they'd all said, in their various languages, "Naw, that's going to cost me too much. I think I'll just sit here and pick at my hangnail."
I think God gives us all a goal of some design. For most of us it isn't quite so grand as the World Cup and for some of us it may take much longer to achieve. But, as with these men, the pursuit of that passion, that calling, is the very best possible life we could lead. It makes me want to run.
So, thank you, God, for the World Cup, the extra motivation it gives me to hit the treadmill. Thank you for putting in each of us a goal that you will coach us toward, and that, when we strive for it, will make us the best version of us we can be. May we hear you, see you, feel you on the way, and may we find contentment and success on the journey. And maybe a free kick on the goal every now and then.

Friday, June 11, 2010

That's the spot

As with every week, I'm glad it's Friday. Really glad. But this week, I feel a little more relaxed than normal. Because I had a facial.
The thing about a facial is that it's not just cold cream and exfoliation. It's an hour in the semi-dark while somebody else takes care of you. The sound of waves and harps massage your brain and steam gently loosens your pores while trained hands untangle your shoulders. It may not feel splendid when there's a thumb playing Red Rover with your neck muscles, but about three seconds later, it's as if your teen years, pollution, and gravity never happened. You're free. Relaxed. New.
It is almost impossible not to feel beautiful after being pampered, and in this day and age, that's saying something.
When I squeeze my own neck, it's just not the same. That's more an expression of tension than a relief from it. Which I think is part of what makes it all the more special when someone else takes time to cleanse the angst from your shoulderblades. For a single girl like me, that someone is an esthetician.
Thank you, God, for the kind of peace that we can't get by ourselves.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

No, I wasn't winking.

I wish, when I was under intense pressure, my heart would race, my palms would dampen, and my eyes would widen slightly in that beautiful terror that haunts heroines on-screen and in print.
Instead, I break out.
NOT a leading-lady response. But with Neutrogena as my faithful companion, I can find within myself the gumption to fight back!
Recently, perhaps because Neutrogena and I are so effective, my nervous system has decided it's time for a new stress outlet. Now my left eyelid goes into a micro-twitch at lightning speed. It doesn't happen always, just in spells, and I've discovered if I jam the pad of my index finger against the lid aggressively, my eye will back down and sit still for a while. I don't think it's noticeable to third parties (I certainly hope not), but I'm tempted to get out the scotch tape and do a little problem solving. Then maybe I'd manage that wide-eyed fear thing going from at least one eye.
Though it is a small muscle with a small spasm, it steals my attention entirely. It is very distracting to see your lashes bob in and out of view. One can hardly enjoy a good sunset when one's eye is batting of it's own accord. Which, in my propensity to see analogies even when my eyes don't want to cooperate, made me think of perspective. How often do I succumb to the minor irritants in life and miss out on the wonders around? How often do I let one twitchy situation become my sole focus, when I could just look beyond to the sunset? Or revel in all the muscles I have that aren't running amok?
So, today I'm thankful for all the time my eye doesn't twitch, and the pad of my index finger to stop it. I'm thankful that even when my lid gets hyper, life is still good! And, of course, for the good folks at Neutrogena, fighting the good fight against break outs everywhere.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Just. Be.

If you say anything with enough conviction people will believe you. Or at the very least they'll cede the point to prevent a confrontation. This comes in handy when I'm surveying the jobsite of a construction foreman who's "been doin' this since before you were born, Missy." (The Missy is usually implied.)
I've learned catchphrases for the roofing industry, abbreviations common to electrical workers, and the vernacular swims out in a twangy accent that startles even me sometimes. Might-could, done-been, and other Siamese words work their way into my speech pattern.
It helps. At the end of the day, more often than not, the supers and foremen I talk with answer my questions and listen to my recommendations...or at least they pretend to.
I am a twenty-eight year old professional with a whopping four years of experience. It's much better than when I had one year, but I still have to earn my share of respect. Be one of the guys. Be tough and smart, but not too smart, and friendly, but not too mushy. Be an intimidator who likes people.
Which makes me so grateful that God can handle me just being me. Scared. Overwhelmed. Goofy. Shy. I can be afraid of heights and he won't think less of me. I can want to be taken care of and He jumps at the chance. I can be weak and He isn't just strong, He's the strongest in those moments. When I mess up, I'm not "that girl who messed up." I'm His daughter. Beloved. Safe. I can't outrun His reach. I can't need Him too much or be too clingy or ask for more than He wants to give of Himself. I can't be a cliche because He doesn't create those. The God of stars, moons, raindrops, epochs....that God is far too big to be confused by me. Far too wise to be disappointed. In a world where being too strong is almost as bad as being too weak--and I often find myself wobbling down the line with a toe in each category--God knows my heart. Even the parts I don't understand myself.
Thank you, God, for being big enough--nay, bigger than enough--for me.

Monday, June 7, 2010

CZ is a girl's best friend

I am not a rich girl. Well, okay, I suppose if you count the entire world population all of us with roofs and food and stuff are rich.
What I mean is, I budget. I want things I can't have. My phone doesn't do anything if I run my fingers over the screen. My car sports four cylinders, and the TV is a cube that would easily fit in the dishwasher.
All this is absolutely fine, and if I cared enough, I could even change some of it. But some things I like are just expensive.
Like diamonds. If diamonds were a girl's best friend, I'd be a mite lonely.
I love sparkly things. I wish rhinestones would make a comeback. I like rings and necklaces and feel as naked without earrings as I do without my cell. So what is a sale-shopper like me to do?
Live it up with Cubic Zirconia!
When the sun hits the face of a CZ, rainbows ricochet off the facets. Even indoor lighting flits in an eye catching twinkle from the cut angles. It may not be rare, but it is lovely. It's value comes from it's beauty alone. Not because others want it, not because it speaks of my status or wealth, just because I like it.
Thank you, God, for the simple pleasures in life, the moments that sparkle freely in an average day, the the times that are not rare, but shine anyway. The joys in life amid the mundane activities, the things that speak little of status or position and speak all the louder because of it. And thank you for sparklies in this girl's price range.

Friday, June 4, 2010

I could be anywhere

Of all the fun I have planned for the weekend, the thing I can't get out of my peripheral thoughts is the stack of books. Yay!
Perhaps I'm a bookworm. No, I take that back. I'm most definitely a bookworm. And while I love the slightly rough feel of a fresh page, the dry scent of a new book, and even that subtle crack when the spine creases for the first time to reveal it's inked pages, the thing that makes these dear is the story itself.
After a very long work week, and a very short nap on the futon, I have already dipped into a new story.
I'm not sure if I'll make it through this before starting another because that discovery, that first glimpse of a new and foreign world without bugs (in books there are rarely bugs...isn't that fabulous?) is so enticing. However, once entered, its hard to draw oneself from the journey. Alas.
But you know what? It's the weekend! I can spend it as I please. And this weekend, I'll spend it with a small-town cop facing a suspicious animal mutilation, in the bayou with an architect, ambling under the Texas moon, and in a community turned upside down when the walls begin to talk...
I am so glad for stories and time to read them! And the authors who hatch them, pen them, scrub them down, and share them! And this weekend, for Heitzmann, Y'Barbo, Wingate, and Gutteridge...and Wingate again if the mail brings book six tomorrow.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Final Answer?

There are times when God opens wide a door I didn't even see coming and I waltz through with a smile on my face.
This is not one of those times.
I've spent the last eight weeks walking down a long, dimly lit hallway toward a big...doorway...(it is fun to be cryptic, no?) unable to tell if it's shut or not. I didn't exactly chart this course, but that seemed like all the more reason it might have been a God thing. On occasion, He's had to distract me so I'll get out of His way in my life. So, as I approached this choice, I prayed, analyzed, prayed, critiqued, prayed, what-ifed, and then prayed some more. I was successful in turning it over to God for up to thirty minutes, then we'd start again.
My chief concern was the sliding-door conundrum. When you have a choice, and you could go either way, and neither seems "right" or "wrong." The Holy Spirit lets you make your pick without giving His whisper-nudge.
What to do? Especially when it's a big deal? What if I pick wrong, shift the entire course of my life, miss my chance encounter with Mr. Right at a coffee shop in the rain, and am thus unable to give birth to a cancer-curing wunderkind? While I'm hacking my last breath, feeble and alone, I'll be able to trace the cat-ridden turn of events back to this doorway.
Okay, yeah, that's not going to happen, but it feels like it might.
Well...the moment came. I walked past the last flickering bulb, brushing aside a curious moth, and squinted in the gloom. The shadows took shape and a dull glint reflected from the knob. I took a deep breath, gripped the handle, and twisted, then....
Nothing. Not. A. Thing.
HALLELUJAH! My answer was a door shut hard and tight. In fact, there was a little padlock on the handle.
So, there I go. For the first time in weeks, I expelled a full breath without tensing.
I know God has His reasons for doors open and shut, and even those formidable sliding doors. But, I am so thankful that this once, the answer was clear and sweet and obvious.
Thank you God for taking all the fear I can let go, and for making your will, just this once, obvious.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Rise and....well just rise, if you can

I was climbing into a semi truck at quarter to six this morning. I will be climbing into my Impala just after six tomorrow. And Friday.

I am grateful for Monster Energy drinks and all the chemicals crammed into them.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Elbow grease

I spent today looking under the hood of a semi (called a "tractor" by those of us in the biz.) No, I haven't left my profession to pursue dormant dreams of long-haulin' across the plane states. I was doing an ergonomic evaluation of a mechanic called Michael.
Michael showed me how to check the many pneumatic lines for leaks and how to change the fuel filter. But, I must confess, at least half my attention was focused on staying oil free. You see, I had the poor judgment to wear a brand new shirt today. I can't help it. I went Outletting yesterday and I needed to wear something new. So while I furiously scribbled the process of changing the fuel sensing unit and took pictures of Michael hunkered over the tank, I was acutely aware of all the tools and equipment around me, hoping I wouldn't run into something and smear grease on my new shirt.
Well, by the end of the lesson, I was grease free. Mostly, because I kept my arms crossed over my notebook when I wasn't frantically writing. This pose is great for keeping one's elbows away from blackened tools and surfaces (which in a shop means pretty much everything.) However, this pose is also the reason I have two small blue pen lines on the crook of my shirtsleeve. Always click the pen before crossing one's arms.
Enter, wonder-of-the day. Tide pens!
If you don't have one, get one now. It is the best two dollars and change you'll ever spend (perhaps excluding coffee...hmmm). With gentle pressure and a few quick buffs, the ink will be a mere memory.
Seriously, these things do to blood, ink, mustard, mascara and other stains what Jesus does to our souls. With a little scrubbing, it makes the ugly just disappear and leaves the white stripe as fresh as a daisy without stealing the rich color from the rest of the shirt...or life, whatever the case may be.
Thank you, God, for Tide pens, and for Tide-penning my heart...every day.