Musings from the Gilly Pad

About Me

Christmas card 2008

     Ok, so I know this little family Christmas card is somewhat inappropriate, but it says more about my family and how we roll more than words can describe.  I have my little slice of heaven on earth with this gang.  I love my husband and three kids and my dog.  Don't misunderstand me, it's not an all out love fest.  We can all drive each other crazy.  We're fully aware of our flaws, except the ones to which we are blind.  We struggle with finding balance in life, and some days just struggle to be nice.  We're in this thing together, though, and we all enjoy the ride.  We're just crazy enough to keep life interesting.  One of my sons asked recently, "Why is our family so weird?"  He's very insightful and I took that to be a compliment!
     I believe the words of Jesus, "Love your neighbor as yourself," and the words of Elvis, "A little less conversation and a lot more action."  I think God is a masterful artist, and that is why He made all sorts of people with all sorts of colorful personalities and interests.  He wants me to love Him, and He wants me to love those that He created- that means EVERYONE!  "Love your neighbor as yourself" was not a suggestion.  I do not believe it means "Love those who look like you, act like you, have the same interests, are the same race, speak the same language, live in your country, are of your ethnicity, share your sexual orientation, have the same academic and financial status, and your exact political ideologies." NO! NO! NO!  I think Heaven is going to be one big surprise party, and we are all going to be surprised by who is there!!!
     We all come with a disclaimer, so here is mine:  I'm no theological, spiritual, or moral giant.  Please don't assume that I live the pretty little pristine life.  HA!  Look, I go through peaks and valleys.  I'm prone to wander, yet I seek to live a life that reflects His goodness.  I really think that loving your neighbor as yourself is a great creed to live by, even if you don't believe in the One that taught it.  My hunch is that this world would be a nicer, safer, more respectful place to hang out.  His opinion of me should be the only one that matters, but my pride and vanity always peek through.
     I'm pretty sure I don't fit the typical stereotype.  I'm not going to let my rear end do the talking.  I'm not a bumper sticker kind of person.  I think we are to embrace and be a part of progressive, positive culture.  I think shunning it and separating yourself from it reflects a fear that God is not in sovereign.  I believe in self-control and having boundaries.  I enjoy red wine and every once in a while a little vodka-tonic with a twist of lime.  I exclaim curse words (here in the south we call them "cuss" words) every now and then, and sometimes I think I even use them appropriately.  Although, in my opinion, using them gratuitously only makes one seem unintelligent.  (unless your the Dude, Dude) I just think its advantageous for people to know other nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, etc.  I really don't like the words conservative or liberal.  They both carry a negative connotation (depending on which side is using the term) and they've been twisted to represent something different from their original intent.   I vote democrat and republican.  I don't really like politics.  I'll readily admit I don't know enough about certain issues to have an intelligent conversation about them.  I'm also cynical and just don't trust politicians.  I know there are a few good ones out there, and I think it's important for us all to be involved.  Most importantly I think we all should concentrate on our own holiness and try to keep our own nose clean.
     I prefer to be in a good mood, but sometimes get really down.  I really like to be around people, but I also need a little solitude to recharge my battery.  I like to find the good in people, and I'm all about steadfastness and longevity in relationships.  If I have extra time in my day, I read. I always wish I had more extra time.  I love reading about the lives of real people like William Wilberforce, Abraham Lincoln, and Dietrich Bonhoeffer.  I also love anything Jane Austen, Anne Lamott, David Sedaris, Donald Miller, Gary Thomas, and Wendell Berry.  That's a strange mix, but that's me. I love my kids and love my husband more.  We still date, and our favorite thing to do is sit on a porch with good conversation and wine.  My favorite sounds: the crackling of a fire, water in a stream, birds in the morning, and the laughter of my kids.  I hate to hear dogs bark incessantly, especially when I'm the morning.  I'm the type of person who has a passion for things I have a passion about.  I love to learn, I love food, clothes & shoes, things that smell good, comfort, peace, some animals, Pilates, art, architecture, and live music.  I absolutely love my city, Memphis, TN and have an even greater hope for her future!  I think I live in THE BEST part of Memphis, which is MIDTOWN.  I actually see my neighbors and know the names of their pets or children!  We have sidewalks and most nights during the summer, random chit-chats occur in the middle of the street b/c we like to engage in each other's lives.  We Midtowners have a little culture of our own around here, and we like it that way!  At I'm writing this, I have a huge problem with CVS purchasing a church building, which is on the National Register of Historical Places, with plans of demolition.  I've had a lot to say about that in past blogs.  I strongly believe in preservation and the vision & efforts of Memphis Heritage!
      I believe who we are is a culmination of our life experiences.  Join me as I share my struggles, convictions, and lessons I'm learning about my place in the world. I hope to offer encouragement and comfort, and a sense that we are all in this together.  If you stick with me long enough, I know I'll make you feel better about yourself.  I'm sort of irresponsible and pretty forgetful....yes, that includes forgetting my kids in various places.  No one is alone here, and absolutely no one is judged. We all have our own "junk" and the need to live with a little more grace, mercy, love, and forgiveness toward all mankind...and that includes ourselves.