Food for thought from "The Darkest Evening of the Year" by Dean Koontz:

Because God is never cruel, there is a reason for all things. We must know the pain of loss; because if we never knew it, we would have no compassion for others, and we would become monsters of self-regard, creatures of unalloyed self-interest. The terrible pain of loss teaches humility to our prideful kind, has the power to soften uncaring hearts, to make a better person of a good one.

To her way of thinking, intuition was a word for perceptions that were received on a level far below the subconscious. Intuition was seeing with the soul.

Boredom is a state of mind akin to an emotion. Perhaps the emotion to which boredom most often leads is despair.

Billy knew the power of ideas. "You are what you eat," the nutritionists endlessly hector fast-food addicts, and you are also what ideas you have consumed.

"Put any three human beings together," she said, "and three of them are going to have psychological problems. So we just cope with one another."

The geometry of judgment is a circle. Hate is a snake that turns to consume itself from the tail, a circle that diminishes to a point, then to nothing. Pride is such a snake, and envy, and greed. Love, however, is a hoop, a wheel, that rolls on forever. We are rescued by those whom we have rescued. The saved become the saviors of their saviors.


Food for thought from "Jesus, CEO" by Laurie Beth Jones:

Sandra Marleen Harrison says her only goal in life is simply "To be a blessing." This used to frustrate me . . . how do you develop an action plan and benchmarks for that kind of goal?
And yet, as I have grown, I find that her goal is becoming more and more my own.

. . . from Proverbs 3:18, talking about Wisdom, and it reads, "She is a tree of life to all who lay hold of her branches. Happy are all who retaineth her." And then I realized that was what I wanted more than anything else: to be a blessing . . .
Today's decisions are tomorrow's reality.
~ sign at the United Methodist Church


"Ella Minnow Pea" (A Novel in Letters) by Mark Dunn
The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog. A story about words and letters and pangrams . . . lots of fun to read.
(Say the title quickly.)


Food for thought from "What I've Learned" . . . (Reader's Digest, October 2008)

Take your profession seriously; don't take yourself seriously.
~ Clint Eastwood

I get sillier as I get older, so I don't know what wisdom means. I can only pass on something that I've been acquanted with . . .
~ Judi Dench

History, theory, and critism are the three fundamental elements to grow in a professional life. History will provide you with the tools for understanding. Theory will be the pilosophy of why you're doing it. And criticism will provide you with the ability to continually master what you are doing. Play with these tools and you can do pretty good things.
~ Massimo Vignelli, interior and graphic designer


Food for thought from "The Last Lecture" by Randy Pausch:

It's important to have specific dreams.

So that was a setback. . . The brick walls are there for a reason. They're not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something.

Somehow, with the passage of time, and the deadlines that life imposes, surrendering became the right thing to do.

We all have finite time and energy. Any time we spend whining is unlikely to help us achieve our goals. And it won't make us happier.


Food for thought from "The Giant's House" by Elizabeth McCracken:

There is nothing I can't make into a library in my brain, no objects I don't imagine borrowing or lending out. Not out of generosity - I am a librarian, and protective - but out of a sense of strange careful justice. Part of me believes all material things belong to all people.

Peggy, you're too serious. In this life, you have to make things up.
Because. Because - that's what life is. Making yourself believe the best things you can.

...that he would, in fact, withhold things that would not ordinarily be secrets, just for the pleasure of withholding them. This was because Caroline so desperately wanted to hear them. You never tell your secrets to people who want to know, I understood that much.


Last evening, Saturday, October 18, was our annual Pumpkin Carving Party. We've lost count, but we think this was at least the 17th party. Attendance this year was 92.