Sunday, August 28, 2011

Farewell to Marge...

There was a memorial service at College Church today for one of the most wonderful and Godly women I've ever known.  Marge Gieser, who was transported to Heaven on August 12, was an amazing artist who made the banners that hung on either side of the platform -- always depicting either the season (Christmas, Easter) or the focus of that particular sermon series.  She choreographed, for lack of a better word, the special services -- organizing the children carrying their palm branches on Palm Sunday, the carrying of the banners on Easter, the silence and darkness of the Good Friday services, the "spread" across the Thanksgiving Eve service table (complete with the College Church Mouse....

And that is just a snippet of what Marge did -- that is what the people of College Church saw on a daily basis.  She was a wife, a mother, and grandmother.  Her husband and children called her blessed.  A life well lived...a life of service to others.  More than one tribute today referred to Proverbs 31....

The sanctuary was packed -- well over 1000 people there.  Our former pastor, Kent Hughes, (emeritus, now, as he has "retired" -- as much as pastors ever do -- and moved to Washington) presided.  It was wonderful seeing him again, and hearing him preach. 

The service was wonderful.  The music was transporting.  "For Alll the Saints" was never sung as triumphantly!

I don't think even Marge could have choreographed it better. 

Friday, August 26, 2011

More Favorite Foods

There were a couple of items I forgot to add to my other list.  Qualifier -- these are favorites of MINE....

Hamburgers/cheeseburgers/bacon-avocado-bluecheese burgers -- Alfie's, Glen Ellyn IL
Ribs -- Alfie's, Glen Ellyn IL
Garlic Ranch dressing -- Houlihan's (anywhere)
Cappuccino -- Valletta, Malta (hands down, best ever!!)
Green olives -- Sevilla, Spain

Tim brought me more olives from Sevilla for my Mother's Day present, along with a cute little olive dish.  These particular olives are not exported, so very hard to come by.

And -- Lord willing -- we are planning a cruise for November, 2012 which stops in Malta!!  So I will get my second cup of amazing cappuccino...

This is Tim and me at the little restaurant in Malta where we had that most wonderful cappuccino....

Thursday, August 25, 2011

On Becoming ... um ... OLD!

Grammies are supposed to be old.  And plump.  And have grey hair tied up in a little bun and smell like cookies. 

I'm old -- officially as of today, I can retire and start getting Medicare.  And I'm plump.  But we won't go there.

I don't have grey hair -- at least I don't know that I have grey hair.  Actually, I probably do, but since I haven't seen the real color of my hair since it turned an ugly mouse brown when I was pregnant with Tim, I have no idea what color it is.  It's not tied up in a little bun but it is short and I get it cut about every 5 weeks.  I tried for spiky once, but that failed miserably.

Smell like cookies....uh, no, I think today I smell like Calvin Klein's Obsession.  Probably if I smelled like anything it would be a computer.

What does a computer smell like anyhow?

I'm celebrating my big day by working on "stuff", getting a manicure, enjoying every single one of my Facebook Happy Birthday messages, buying myself a couple of books for the Kindle (hey -- it's my BIRTHDAY!!), seeing a mom and baby later this afternoon, and going to Houlihan's for dinner with my Bobbert and dear niece, Rebecca who is finishing her second day of classes at Wheaton College.

So far for my birthday I got a new office chair, an iPhone, and my trip to San Francisco.  Starting in June, I claim anything we need to buy (or want to buy) as a birthday gift.  That makes it all seem legitimate, somehow.  Bob got an iPhone too -- also probably as my birthday present!!

My mother ADORED her birthday.  She loved getting presents -- the more the better.  I think it was her 70th birthday -- was it then?  Lyn would remember...that we wrapped up 70 presents.  Lots of Heath Bars and pencils.  Didn't matter to her what the present actually was, she loved everything!!

Only better thing would be to have All My Children (and Awards) here today.  But I've been blessed -- Jill and the Awards here with Torrey and Chris in July; Tim and Annabel here with Torrey and Chris in August, Lyn and Tim, David & Rebecca here just last week. 

Yes, even getting old, I am truly blessed.

Thank you, Lord for all my birthdays!!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Fave Foods from LEC

Linda, Carole and I started a list of our favorite eats and where to get them.  Thought I'd share them here for posterity...

Consider each of these starting with "Best...."

Fried Oysters -- Hank's Oyster Bar, Washington DC
Calamari -- Logan's Tavern, Washington DC
Bacon -- Radisson Paper Valley Hotel, Appleton WI
Mexican (all around) -- Ted's, Norman OK
Soup & Salad -- Madison's, Jefferson City MO
Key Lime Pie -- Charleston's, Norman OK
Shrimp with Walnuts (Chinese) -- Chef Ping's, Arlington Heights IL
Pot Stickers -- T G I Friday's, Anywhere
Derby Pie -- Bistro 301, Louisville KY
Fresh Banana Cheesecake -- Cheesecake Factory, Anywhere
Grilled Artichokes -- Hitching Post, Buellton CA (they also sold Magic Dust...delicious on anything!!)
Chicken Pot Pie -- Embassy Suites, Salt Lake City UT
Macaroni & Cheese -- Doubletree, Arlington Heights
Carbonara -- Some little Italian restaurant in Morehead KY

I know I'm missing a couple -- will share when I think of them.

Meanwhile, the best all around bed I've ever slept in -- and at least I got to share this one with Bob -- the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco.  Too bad we were only there three nights.  Wish I could have figured out how to take the bed home with us!!

Church Hopping Part 3

With the exception of one more Sunday which will occur sometime in the fall, we have finished our church-hopping for the summer.  Quite frankly, if you live in the Wheaton area, or any other community that has a plethora of churches -- we'd advise it!  Particularly if you are empty-nesters.  Children, for the most part, aren't fans of church-hopping as they like their own space and familiarity.

Last Sunday we attended Church of the Resurrection, a contemporary Anglican church currently meeting at Glenbard West High School in Glen Ellyn.  One of my classmates from West Sub, Margaret Muir Webb, and her husband Jerry go there, and that's what spurred us on -- actually running into Margaret one Saturday at (our favorite store) CostCo.  (Great for the "senior buffet" on Saturdays....).

Anyway, it is good to get out of your comfort zone and see how others worship -- realizing anew that there are many believers who love Jesus, and that we don't all have to demonstrate this in the same way.

"Rez" was the most different of the four churches we went to this summer.  Small worship team, but good music (as far as CCM -- contemporary Christian music goes).  Liturgical -- very much so.  Communion which is part of the liturgy every week, was quite catholic -- all those who are baptized could partake, which meant three and four year olds.  The pastor, however, made it very clear that if you were not in a right relationship with Jesus, that you had better refrain from participating.  We walked forward and were served the bread by the pastor (gluten-free if you needed it), and wine or non-alcoholic wine (as you desired) by one of the elders.  Very much a solemn, yet joyful occasion.

We parked right behind Rachel, one of Torrey's friends from high school who grew up in College Church, but who now, with her husband and adorable daughters, live in the city and attend one of our daughter churches -- Holy Trinity.  They had come out to Wheaton for the weekend, and were going to Church of the Rez for the first time because her sister Jessica and family attend there.  Fun catching up with Rachel, and later with Jessica....

Overall, I think our church hopping experience left us with a much greater appreciation for College Church....especially -- oh most notably -- especially -- The Music!!

Friday, August 5, 2011

Making Comments...

Rosie just texted me to say she was having trouble making comments on my blog.  No problem, I thought, I'll just make a couple of comments and show her how it is done -- being the techy that I am.



For some reason I can't comment on my own blog either.

But I did change to the new editor thingy....I wonder if this will work better than the old editor.  New USUALLY is better than old. 

Except when it comes to Grammies, that is.

Families Together

At last. Tim and Annabel are HERE! They got in last night -- late. Somehow their co-pilot disappeared and was no where to be found...didn't answer cell phone calls, nothing. An hour or so later they finally found a spare (reminds me of a spare tire just sitting around waiting to be used), and they were on their way...

Got home around 11:00 -- it was midnight their time, but both were starving so had a little cereal (cereal is a wonderful thing) to tide them over until this morning.

They came from Atlanta where they were visiting Annabel's Mimi & Papa (maternal grandparents) and her Aunt Robin and cousins....prior to that they had spent several days in Naples with Jill and the Awards.

And now they are here! And Torrey and Chris come tonight....

Tim's "9 Day Club" will be in and out too.... That would be Michael Duncan and his wife Kelly (Mike's birthday is 9 days before Tim's), and Sam Bandstra, whose birthday is 9 days after Tim's.

But here are Tim and Annabel with Jill and Grammie's Awards...

I, of course, think they are all beautiful.

Of course, no prejudice here whatsoever....