Sunday, January 31, 2010

Reading the Bible in a Year

So, as a little background, I grew up Catholic, with a Charismatic Catholic mom. And while my mother is quite a captivating lady and can spin quite a yarn, that's not the sort of charismatic I mean. According to Wikipedia the Charismatic Catholic movement is like so:

The Catholic Charismatic Renewal is a movement within the Catholic Church. Worship is characterized by vibrant Masses, as well as prayer meetings featuring prophecy and sometimes glossolalia, or "speaking in tongues." This movement is based on the belief that certain charisms (a Greek word for gifts), bestowed by the Holy Spirit, such as the abilities to speak in tongues and to heal (which Christians generally believe existed in the early Church as described in the Bible) should still be practiced today.
A dove, symbolizing the Holy Spirit, who is believed by Christians to confer various gifts.

A Catholic church in Ann Arbor, Michigan describes charismatic prayer:

"A charismatic style of prayer is common at Christ the King. People are free to raise their hands in prayer and during songs, many pray their own prayers audibly, some pray in tongues, etc.... They pray with expressive or charismatic prayer at monthly parish prayer meetings, at the beginning of parish meetings, and most especially during certain moments in the Holy Mass. These are some of the external markers of a charismatic parish. Internal markers include a radical surrender to the Lordship of Jesus Christ in all parts of life, a strong adherence to the Gospel and the teachings of the Catholic Church, and the pursuit of strong friendships centered on Christ."[1]

So the Catholic I grew up with, and the Catholic you may know are a little different. There are stories told about my youth where I thought sea gulls were the manifestation of the Holy Spirit, and I thought Jimmy Swaggert was the President since I saw him in front of a podium wearing a suit a lot on TV. And while I definitely felt a strong connection to Jesus, God the Father, and the Holy Spirit, it was a childlike connection. I didn't reach a point in my walk with Jesus where I felt strongly compelled to engage in the charismatic activities my mother was involved in. I didn't read my Bible with joy, but rather in this fashion of "I need to read this thing all the way through." I did not know the Catholic Bible was different than the Bible non-Catholics read.

So even though I have been a baptized believer since I was about four, I knew very little about the Bible. In fact, what I did know about the Bible came from one book, and it wasn't the Catholic Bible. It was this Jehovah's Witness children's book of bible stories my grandmother had been given.

As far as Bible stories go, some of my favorite grand slams are in there. but flipping through today, I got a big giggle of "Dinah Gets into Trouble" hehe

Anyhoo, back on track. I could tell people a bit about the Bible, but not oodles. I am now at the point in my walk where I want to know more. I've taken several very good Bible studies and feel as if I have a few tools in the tool kit before I set of on this Bible reading on my own. But starting off at the beginning and just reading through didn't work so well. What do I know about reading the Bible? Should I read straight through and get stuck at the begat-o-thon? Jump around by whim? No, I needed a plan. A plan with checklists. A plan with places to read through the Bible, but which isn't sporadic.

I needed(and Elizabeth Garn had recommended it ):
The Discipleship Journal Bible Reading Plan
*raise the roof* blogistsas, because it keeps me organized AND competitive. Because I need a little competition to get me through Leviticus.

I am just behind by Acts for right now. I find it very repetitive at this point with Saul and Barnabas roaming throughout the ancient world. I know I should thoughtfully pray and try to glean information from it, but I figure reading the Bible at all is better than giving up because I'm not doing it right. So speed reading through Acts it is.

Ruby Rating 3/5
Bible progress 23/300 or 7% done.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Happy Anniversary, Kim!

Eight years ago:

We had a full Catholic Mass (I grew up Catholic, Kim was baptized at Bible church during college) then promptly left the Catholic church.

Look how little Julia was!

Thanks for being the butter to my bread. I love you.

Friday, January 8, 2010

She gets up while it is still dark; she provides food for her family and portions for her servant girls

Proverbs doesn't mention cleaning snow off your car while it is dark out, but I think we can agree this is implied.

So the house is bad. It's really bad. Sooooooo bad. But one thing I have been totally on the ball about lately is making sure I have a plan for dinner each night. I have been very guilty of letting Kim do this entirely too often after his long day at work. Granted, sometimes I do legitimately have migraines or overwhelming fatigue and pain, but I can admit I allow myself to get lazy and rely on my husband who can cook a little too much.

So I've made sure to make a plan each day as I am driving home. We have vacuum packed most of the meat and poultry we have bought recently, so I can defrost it quickly in the sink. I haven't copped out with chicken nuggets in a few weeks! I've even made... salad. I know. Salad. Though I am not good at salads. I like salads, but I lack salad creativity. My mother in law can make a mean salad, so I should ask her for some tips when she comes in March.

This weekend I HAVE to start working on the house. I am putting the Christmas decorations away, so that should help motivate me. But it's really not good over here. I'm scared!

Ruby Rating - 3/5

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Dry & Chapped Hands: A repair guide for Nurses and Mothers Alike

So, working in the nursing industry, I wash my hands a lot. Because I don't do the laundry or dishes much at home (Kim's office is by the laundry room and he does it most of the time and we have a dishwasher) and haven't been changing baby diapers in quite a while I don't wash my hands ridiculously often at home. I wash them, let me clear, but just not as much as I did when the kids were little. On the other hand, I wash my hands countless times a day at work, and I hand wash dishes a lot for my clients while I am there. As a result, this past week my hands have become terribly chapped. On the verge of having cracking knuckles, which would make using hand sanitizer intensely uncomfortable, I set about repairing my hands with vigor.

So, my guide for preventing and caring for chapped, cracking hands:

1. Don't wash your hands in hot water. Use warm water. It works just fine and will dry your hands out a lot less.

2. Pat your hands dry instead of rubbing.

3. Use hand sanitizer if you can instead. For me, this is a lot less often than you would think at work because I have to wash my hands between patients, and after dealing with patient incontinence, including diaper changes and taking out the incontinence briefs in the trash. I wear gloves the whole time, but regulations state you should actually wash your hands with soap and water. I use hand sanitizer as much as I can in between.

4. Use gloves when you do dishes. At work, I use medical gloves, but dish gloves would be more cost effective and ideal at home. This protects your hands from the hot water you should use on dishes.

5. Use hand cream after you wash your hands. Honestly I don't have much time for this at work. It makes the gloves slide around and I don't like that. But if you can prevent your hands from getting over dry with plain old hand lotion, why not try to do that? At home I use lotion every other time I wash my hands.

6. Let's assume you abused your hands this past week. The baby was sick and you had to wash hands every 10 minutes. Now for the choose your own adventure portion of the post!

If they are:
a. chapped (looking like a dry dessert or red, but not cracked open) put on an intensive hand cream and some cotton gloves to lock in the lotion. I am typing with a pair on as poor English.

b. If the lotion stings, or if your hands are cracked and possibly bleeding, break out the aloe with lidocaine from summer. Put some of this on the sensitive/cracked areas, then follow up with an unscented, dye free balm like A&D ointment or Aquaphor. After THAT you can put on the hand lotion and gloves. If you have one of those paraffin hand things like my sister does, this would be the time to break it out.

Your hands could potentially look swollen and very red after moisturizing them because they are damaged. Mine looked like I had a run in with a toxic chemical and were very VERY attractive. Throw in some ragged cuticles and... can we say hand model awesomeness? Or not. At all. But the next morning they looked much better. Still dry, but not horrible. Or red and puffy. You will have to keep on top of them until they are normal, which for my OCD hand washing sister is never, or for the non-OCD folks reading the post probably a few days. Start protecting them now, because cracked hands are awful.

Recommend products:
A&D Ointment
Sally Hansen Salon Severely Dry and Chapped Hand Remedy
Neutrogena Hand Cream (the ointment stuff)
Gloves in a Bottle Shielding Lotion

Feel free to post your suggestions in the comments and I will add them to the post.