Where the Unlikely Electric is Found...

8:29 PM

"I Reach Your Hand to be Your Clay"

Posted by Heather Arney |

May 31, 2010

There was a time that I zealously typed out my brain-wave blog posts in Word (or in the ghetto-my-computer-didn't-come-with-word-alternative), but sadly I have been reduced to a dead-virus laiden-laptop, and am living on the edge, typing as I go on a roomie's Mac. How daring you say?? ;)

It's okay - there are seasons for all sorts of things...and I don't mind so much being out of the tech season in my life, because seemingly God has graciously been blooming a different kind of season in my life as of late. I won't pretend that I have majestically arrived at a spiritual mountain top, or hold any new keys of wisdom....only that God has made me hungry, and it is very humbling. Not humbling in that I feel bad, or not good enough, but hungry and humbled in a beautiful and delightful way. Crazy to say, but maybe for the first time ever in my life, God really has my attention. Yes, I have been a Christian for many years, but I'm trying to unpack what all that means. God has me on the edge of my seat these days - all I want to figure out and know is how all this works, more of who He is, more of His heart. I want to know Him in a way I have never known Him before. It's like I'm sitting having coffee, reading the Bible, and hanging expectantly, waiting for conversation back from Him...I think that is how it is supposed to be, but not how I have lived.

I would say one of the greatest things I am being challenged I with and am working through, and learning about is the great power that Jesus, through the Spirit had, and what He did while on the earth. Jesus taught and healed so many people - so neat to see these two things hand in hand.

John 14:12-17 say this: "Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask me anything in my name, I will do it. If you love me, you will keep my commandments. And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Helper, to be with you forever, even the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it neither sees him nor knows him. You know him, for he dwells with you and will be in you."

So as I read stories out of the Gospels, they come to life in a new way - they aren't just stories, they are powerful ways in which Jesus, and other believers broughts refreshment and healing through the power of the Holy Spirit, in peoples' lives. What do I do with the verses above that tell me that through His Spirit I can and will be able to do the things that Jesus has even done and more. Do I believe that? What faith it takes to believe this, and to start walking in this. I think right now I am asking God to show me/teach me about such faith, such faith to believe that He can use me in whatever way He wishes, because of the power through Christ and the Holy Spirit. Because of the Holy Spirit, we as Christians harbor so much power to be used by Him in great ways...Lord teach me, Lord teach us all.

These few lines above don't even scratch the surface of what I feel I am learning about lately, or what questions jump around in my mind, like a crazy monkey on a trampoline. (Fantastic visual image, huh? I try) ;) And so as not to ramble past what is needed, I will simply implore you to go to to experience something quite unique and amazing. This last week someone told me about a brilliant young girl, who encountered God at a very young age, and who, unexplainably (aka, ONLY through God), has been given the gifts of writing through poetry, and of art, through painting and drawing, FAR FAR beyond her years. Her story is astounding, and I've been munching down on her poetry book I'm borrowing, called, "My Dream is Bigger Than I." You don't even really have to be a lover of poetry (lucky me that I am), to be TOTALLY blown away by the truths this girl imparts/communicates, and the depth that she has, at such a young age.

I leave you with just a taste of her poetry:


Cocoons got hardened in the weathered clay.
My day is bound. I cannot talk.
The time I breathe, and the time I race.
Tonight the wind begins to walk.

Far away, no one sees my eyes.
I sing to paper butterflies to stay alive.
Far away, I hear someone love.
I will not leave until my time.

Like naked pine trees fall in ocean roots,
I fall without my shadow in the smell of rain.
Like newborn butterflies reach wooden flutes,
I reach your hand to be your clay.

The Waiting

In the distance
the scenery watches me
and teaches me
how to wait.

One foot--barefoot.
The other--still in a cast.
The waiting landscapes
my heart.

will stop
when my planted sycamore is grown.

6:06 AM

On Occassion, Not Always, but Often... :)

Posted by Heather Arney |

April 17, 2010
Sometimes I...

Sometimes I like to rock side pony tails.
Sometimes I think I’d wear leggings every day if work was okay with.
Sometimes I feel so deeply I wonder if my heart might break.
Sometimes I sit for hours with girlfriends over coffee talking about everything and nothing, all at once.

Sometimes I understand the deeper and more profound truths of God, and sometimes I don’t.
Sometimes I think about how much fun it would be to go stomp puddles after a storm.
Sometimes I remember how much I don’t like being cold, and therefore should imagine puddle jumping from inside.
Sometimes I drink Chai and scribble “profound” lines on coffeeshop napkins, wondering if others do the same.

Sometime I get the biggest kick out of yard sales, and block sales, especially when I find that treasure, that I love but don’t need.
Sometimes I break out into dance, and think how healing and freeing it is to boogy down without a single care of what anyone else thinks.
Sometimes I wish I could feed every hungry mouth around me, and save every child that is trapped in a chaotic family that seems to be without hope.
Sometimes I see hope in the world, hope because of Christ.

Sometimes I listen to songs on repeat for an hour, because they are so profoundly impactful – each time it plays is the first time.
Sometimes I feel like a stranger on this earth, because my home truly is elsewhere
Sometimes I wish my hands were better at creating art – at least better than a 4th gr. Level.
Sometimes I sing, and then pretend that I’m going to be the next folk hit.

Sometimes I am content with where I am at in life.
Sometimes I trust God and know that He is great and mighty to save, and holds me in His hands.
Sometimes I see a little bird and am reminded how much more He’ll take care of me, if He’s got the back of that sparrow.
Sometimes I see a sunrise so compelling, that I am alive in new ways, and ready to live with crazy zeal, creativity, and delight…and sometimes I do just that.

9:57 PM

The Return from Outer Space:

Posted by Heather Arney |

December 29, 2009
This particular afternoon found me in random of all random places - a foreign shower , staring at an Alberto V05 bottle, contemplating my life, and wondering who in the heck Alberto is, and if he knew that I was using his shampoo at 1:40 in the afternoon, days after Christmas 2009. And if you know me, you probably know that I'm not normally hanging out with Alberto in the shower, and instead rocking something a little more user friendly and natural...well, I digress from here. The geographical location wasn't someplace altogether foreign, that I woke to find myself in. 'Twas a planned visit indeed. Iowa. Freezing cold. Blizzards. Car battery dying. Seeing family I haven't seen in years. Discovering sleep, and falling in love with it. Reminiscing, laughing. Learning that some hunters out here use the hooves of animals as coat racks (who knew??!). Sipping coffee and chatting with Grandma. This has been Christmas 2009. Chock full of interesting moments. Perhaps this week and a half in the perpetual tundra seems like an out-of-body-experience, because I have no framework for being here, and all this lazing about and plowing through snow is worlds away from my day-in and day-out work world in the Fres.
And this oh-so-apt title above, is less about returning from Iowa to California, and more about a return to writing again (my words have not graced the e-page since September!), and more about a return to intentionality and simplicity and a slower pace in life. What. In. The. Heck. Does it mean to sloooowww down, and go through life at such a pace, that your head has time to sort and think, your heart has time to feel, your hands have time to do and create, and your body has time to properly sleep? Those may seem like basic questions, but yeehaw if I have had good answers and actions to them in these last few months. Besides, I have highly neglected my entrepreneurial collage projects (only somewhat kidding, ha!!), and my mad black bean soup making skills are rusty and need to be worked on. ;) There are so many daily things/and tending to my soul, that I'm missing out on because I'm doing too many "oh, it's an important function/good cause/blah blah blah" nights out! I'm not committing to a life of tutelage under Bette or Martha...but you get my drift.
We drove, or should I say inched, "into town" today, on icy roads, and through miles upon miles of white blankets and fog, presumably covered up farmland. There was not a whole lot of visual creativity or change for miles....just white, WHITE, darker white, lighter white, and white-ish fog! But somehow what felt boring and plain at first, became beautifully simplistic and idyllic. Farm life - perfect chance to slow down and observe farm oddities I am not used to coming into contact with. While we drove today, many a pheasant almost met their demise, as the hurried off the slick snow, and away from their team huddle in the middle of the road. And strangely enough, I was duly impressed with the fact that I had just seen a school of pheasants in the snow today, and probably no one else I know was experiencing that same thing at that same moment. I am experiencing more "only in a small town" moments than I can recall, care to relay, or knew I'd stumble upon. But all of this good Christmas lazing about in 20 below weather, has forced my heart and head to slow, to re-center, to create and find more peace, and to take a deep breath.
Here's to renewed energy in 2010! To be mindful of what I choose to give my time pick the right rewarding and important things to be involved in...knowing that a great thing at the wrong time, isn't necessarily a great thing. Here's to purposeful and intentional creativity and dreaming...And for whoever you may be, picking over this tiny essay of sorts...may you find that deep peace and intentional slow, as you start a new season in the New Year.
I'm flying back (weather-permitting) this weekend, ready to collage, make soup, attend to my soul, and start the New Year out at a better pace!!

11:54 PM

And They Shall Be Called, September Snippets.

Posted by Heather Arney |

September 18, 2009

I seem to only write once to twice a month on here.....and maybe that is because I only want to share if I have some grand epiphany, delightful verbage to contribute, profundity bubbling in my heart and head, or something comical.....I think it is hard to "blog through the mundane." I can surely promise you that you don't want to know a lot about my last few weeks...:

Like that I acted like a kid at Christmas time, the day we Fresnans woke up the other day and saw that it HAD rained in the night, and my pavement was wet, yet when I scooted out the door in my pjs, nothing was falling from the sky. I came back in the house and my power was out, so I showered in the dark, and remembered that I am a person from many places. I flashed to my years in Vancouver, where I was always freezing cold, so tired of the constant day-in and day-out rain, always hoping for one tiny ray of Mr. Sun, Sun, Mr. Golden Sun, to please shine down on me....I'm so thankful, actually, for all the sun-time we log here in the 'No, but my heart was giddy with rememberence of the good rain memories. I also flashed to my college summers, when I'd leave Vancouver, and head back to Maryland. Maryland would be hot and humid, and then would offer up terrificly divine flash flood thunder and lightening storms, and I would watch with glee from my couch, in awe....until out power went out for days.

Can you possibly imagine that all of what I just wrote "flashed" through my mind in about a ten minute period, just because it actually happened to rain in the middle of the night here in Fresno? That instance/happening/event in the night was intersecting with my past, my life experiences, my rich memories, my weather preferences, and my well-geographically travelled soul.

Still working at my job, day in and day out, trying to become more inventive and creative in my work, loving the chance to work with kids, not loving working 8:30-5 EVERYDAY. Yuck and a half...that is permanently unresolved, temporarily...if that makes sense? Yet, I guess I don't want to share common things on my blog, or average thoughts, but things that have great feeling or depth, or hold weight, or, or, or.

So how about:
I'm in a small group through a church, and it started up a few weeks ago, and I'm so delighted to meet new faces of people my age, who love Jesus, and who seem to all be in this place in life of really wanting to ask Jesus what it means to live authentically for Him, to really know Him. The book we're really good. Yea, let's put our "I know my Christian literature, or I'm a Greek Philospher" mindsets aside...and seen as teaching tool/devotional guide....the book is teaching me SO much. Are my life and my actions filled with love and grace-giving? Am I primarily concerned with loving God and loving people, or am I wrapped up in outward practices, that can be good, but are not if they operate in and of themselves - faith practices that can turn into legalism, that we put in the center of our hearts, rather than loving and serving Him and His people. Will people see Christ in me? If so, how?? Will be it be because I'm full of His love?

How about:
I'm so incredibly excited to re-make this fab holiday-esque recipe that I tried out for the first and only time, a year ago Christmas time. Something to the effect of taking Greek Phyllo pastry, and laying out sheets of it. Then putting a Brie cheese round in the center of the Phyllo dough pastry. Then seperately one makes a concoction of dried cranberries, pecans (that you have to toast first), a bunch of spices (not sure off-hand which ones), and a fair dose of port. That all gets mixed together and heated up really well and so all the goodness merges. Then when there is definite merging action going on, pour the said goodness all over the Brie. Then wrap up the Phyllo pastry around the Brie and gooey mixture, like you're wrapping a package (except not like when I'm wrapping a package - I swore off wrapping things from now on!! It looks like a 4 and a half yr. old wrapped bags only.) Lastly, you do an egg wash over the pastry, pop it in the oven for some amount of time (?) at a certain said temperature (?), and VOILA!!!!! Yummy gooey mess that tastes great with some quailty bread - like artisan whole wheat kalamata olive bread, or quality crackers of sorts. Keep in mind that when you cut into this, I think it is a bit runny/messy.

How about: I have the great opportunity to be a part of an acoustic/folk show at a coffee shop coming up, and get to work with some talented musicians...I'm going to be contributing back-up vocals, so to speak...I'm as happy as a peach pie!...(I hear they are happy, I've not confirmed the rumors..)
And also...I was already closer to 30 than I was to 20, but this really get cemented as I have ANOTHER Birthday in 2 weeks!!! (It's funny how those b-day come around pretty consistently...) I'm not sure how I feel about this...yes it's just a number, but still....

Those are some of the HIGH-lights...yea, life is full of Low-lights (and no, I'm not trying to talk about getting your hair done...), but somehow my heart isn't so sure it is necessary to shovel out the low-lights in the blog, at least not today. My heart continues to wrestle, like most hearts do, with a lot of things. That's just being honest. I don't seem to always understand why things are they way they are, what things mean, what I'm supposed to be doing, what God is telling me...but I do know that God is so incredibly and amazingly wonderful. I think one of the reasons He is, is because He doesn't change. His character and nature are always consistent and He is always faithful. All those billion attributes we can pin on Him...well they are always attached to Him. He'll always love me in profound ways I don't yet understand, He'll always be gracious, He is the One that has set out plans for my life, He is a Father and a Healer, and a life-giver. He cares for the least of these...He is God...and I am not. I'm glad He is, and I am not.

So, I guess this is an update, a small tiny one....snippets. I am hoping that tomorrow morning or sometime soon finds me wandering Fresno with my camera again, taking pictures of things that speak to me as I walk. If I find myself doing this soon, I'll be sure to post any pictures that I get excited about.

Heather, Out.

5:58 PM

A Living Art Collage of Redemption

Posted by Heather Arney |

August 23, 2009

"Time can't go backwards, you cannot changed what has happened, but you can change everything else."

I just finished watching what many would call a very "B" rate movie called, "Mom, Dad, and Her," on Lifetime. Before you chuckle, I must say, (as I wipe tears from my eyes), that despite the cheesiness factor of this "made-for-tv film, I feel so incredibly moved, and have so many thoughts swirling in my head....The main word is "redemption." I don't think I have long-winded, poetic and profound, paragraphs ready to leap from my brain on to the pages, or e-pages as the case may be.....but maybe a few thoughts and a few pictures can say what I want to say.

The simple storyline of the film was this: A teenager's parents were divorced when she was young....she is struggling in life and getting into trouble. Her mother calls her father, out of despair, and she is "forced" to go live out in a rural area for the summer with her father and her new "step-mom." The step-mother is played by Melora Hardin, "Jan," the quirky old boss of Michael on The Office. Her role in this movie was glorious, and gloriously simple. The movie was typical - meaning I am sure you could script what the summer in the rural town with the dad and step-mom would look like. The daughter was pretty horrid and dreadful, and ran away and was mean to the father and step-mom...and the step-mom was gracious and loving back. She didn't try to be the girl's mom, or get angry at her for her bad behavior, instead she embraced her. She saw that the girl was broken because of her past, and her parents' failed marriage....the step-mom was gentle and sure, and through her simple kindness was a change agent. Her actions and her love brought forth redemption in this girl's life.

I couldn't even get up to zap my luke-warm coffee or get a tissue for my blubbery face...I just sat there, so incredibly moved by Melora Hardin, in this role. She was a change agent in someone's life because she called out the best in them, she offered hope in the face of hopelessness, she offered grace when it was certainly not the human thing to do. She helped someone see their way through something difficult, by being a presence and by being full of unconditional love. That struck me as exactly what Jesus did, and does, and costantly does in my life. How steady and how sure is the redemptive work of Christ in my life.

It sometimes takes a Lifetime Sunday afternoon movie to remind me of His redemptive nature....I am reminded of how much He is in the business of making old things new....of taking the broken and messed up places within ourselves and creating something beautiful, and using us right where we are at to touch another person. He banishes shame and hurt, and gives us something sweeter and more beautiful. I think sometimes we can barely behold this thing..we don't know how to behold it. Pain can be comfy, and this sweet tasting burst of Hope he offers challenges us to receive it, right in the middle of whatever messiness we are in. Behold it.
I got all inspired..I wanted to be Melora Hardin in her character in that moment. Don't get me wrong...I'm not looking to put myself in her shoes and sign up for the specifics of her life. I can only hope to be half the hope-giver as she was to that teenaged girl.

I think that is one of the reasons I like taking pictures of random, broken down, old stuff...(specific, huh?). If you look at my "Creating in V-town" album on facebook, it is a glimpse of a photo escapade I had one evening. I took about 72 shots of funky couches and chairs in complete disrepair, that were dumped outside of a closed thrift store. For me, looking at those couches is not in the slightest way, depressing. Instead it evokes total hope and glee inside of me. What is the story of this couch, and what potential does it have? (Don't answer that question...the specific couch was so funky, it deserves to be burned or exploded, cause it was super icky, haha!) But for -analogy sake....what can be done with rusty old yesterday's stuff? It can be re-invented, re-worked, re-created, re-born, re-invested in. I LOVE THE "RE-" WORDS! It's like, TAKE 2, Try again, don't give up, you are rad, and you just haven't fully realized it yet.

What else has "-re" in it? REBIRTH. RENEWAL.

It is my prayer that God could use my little humble self in great way in others' life, by simply being a hope-bearer - pointing the way to Christ's gift of new life - helping people to see that He does super cool things with rusty people...He can fine tune and recreate.
Here's to thriftstore sweaters that get a second life, vintage furniture - round 2, and the redemption of our hearts and lives.....

I want to be a living art collage of redemption. Does that make sense? It did in my head.

The few pictures above fit my mood right now - shots I took 2 years ago when on a retreat up in the woods and mountains...simplicity. :)

7:21 PM


Posted by Heather Arney |

August 8, 2009

Just back from seeing the new Meryl Streep and Amy Adams movie, "Julie and Julia." It is as if I have come back from an experience - that I was given a small cushioned window seat into the lives of Julie and Julia, and that we are now moving towards friendship, or (okay, maybe just wanna be penpals.) Maybe I was not so profoundly impacted by this movie, following the life of Julia Child and her passionate pursuit of cooking, and the young woman who cooked all 500 and something of Julia's recipes in 365 days, as much as it inspired me and challenged me.

In the movie Julie was maniachal as all get out, swinging a full-time job, her marriage, and sometimes working her way through multiple French recipes in one night. She did not just boil lobster alive, and slice through the spine of a duck (count me out!!), but detailed her account in a zestfully vibrant and honest way, to her cyber readers via a blog. I must admit that blogging and cooking are two hot button words (and activities for me....perhaps, cooking more so), and so I was all about this film. I also must blatantly admit, I was envious of her great blog following!! It made me want to pick a theme, and some crazy task to do each day, and faithfully complete both the task, and the colorful description of the experience....

Being in the theater was a superb reality check for me. I am certain that after the movie, most every female, especially every young female, was completely enamored by the young Julie's life....was ready to live in a flat above a pizza shop in NYC, with an amazingly committed and devoted husband, pursuing such an adventure, and finding new fame. Not to say that it can't happen, because ABSOLUTELY ANYTHING, (almost), is possible with vision, and hard work, and never-ending creativity and drive.... My friend in the theater made the comment though, after the final credit rolled, about how easy it would be to get wrapped up in what looked on screen as Julie's perfect life and adventure...

As I wait for about an hour, to get ready to have delightful Thai cuisine with a friend, my hunger gets the best of me and I've fallen prey to string cheese and some (fab, I must say) dark beer....I am watching my roommate's over-sized, overly gleeful dog roll around on his back repeatedly, while chewing on a tennis ball, and I am thankful.... :) Thankful that I am human, and that God has equipped up as human beings with such wondrous capabilities and capacities to accomplish so much, to create, to dream, to serve, to love...heck to be thinking, feeling, people, and not dogs who chew balls. (See Hebrews 13:20-21 - God enables us and gives us strength where we do not have ability and are weary). What a great honor and responsibility. This weekend so far has been a quiet one so far, and for that I am thankful...a time to sit before God and really try and listen and hear from Him, and recenter myself, and really ask myself what is in my heart to do, and ask God what He would have for me....believe me, the string cheese and dark beer, are certainly enhancing the clarity I am receiving now! ;)

I may not be the next Julie, sweeping the cyber world with a thousand plus blog followers (although, maybe one day, ha!), but I am Heather Clarrisse, and for that I am thankful to God....

A quick aside: Say I was to dawn the hat of professional blogger, or pretend professional blogger, what crazy thing should I become obsessed with and pursue at greath lengths, and tell the whole world about? :)

a.) Make it my pyschotic bent to try every Chai tea, chai latte, and perversion of chai in this fine city of Fresno, and write a detailed report about not only the drink, but what company it found me in...

b.) A hunt for every authentic, and divine, and hopefully sanitary taco stand or truck or joint in this town, and my ravings about how good it is, a confession of how much sour cream I dumped on top, and the people I mingled with... (funny how the first two involve food!!)

c.) Quit responsibility (NOTE: DON'T WORRY, I WON'T DO THAT!) and become a traveling bohemian somewhere in Europe....probably somewhere in Ireland to start off....I'll write about crazy traveling life, my musical pursuits, and beautiful seas and villages I land in. Maybe one day....and maybe you can come too??? Let me know if you're in. ;)

d.) could be a blog about my youthworking pursuits but that may not entail enough humor for my liking....don't want to put you guys in tears, and make you grab blankets and need a hug...

Be commissioned to:

6:14 PM

I Wanna Be a New Heights Reacher!

Posted by Heather Arney |

July 25, 2009

They Might Stay

Let's play a guess what I'm describing, k?

- Studies words on a page for 2 hours a day...looks like some form of memorization
- Claims to play the vocal chords, and can be seen practicing their use, at 1 in the morning.
- Sings in buildings where coffee is served, and sometimes in funky joints....they serve alcohol there. :)
- Records on borrowed equipment - friend's roommates' mac computers - with much vibrancy, focused energy, songs for ears to hear...not just any ears, but ears of followers.
- Prints flyers spouting off such things as "Folk Delight Since 2009."

Well, I didn't tell you the rules....or how you were supposed to answer, so I guess I'm not very good at setting up games for people to play. I promise not to go work for a game invention company....but I can promise to tell you that the above RANDOM FACTS are connected to one of my new musical projects, called They Might Stay. I keep alluding to musical ventures in past messages, but haven't said anything concrete about it lately, because I have literally been buried in a Tower house with no A/C, practicing and practicing with my friend and musical counterpart Derrick, learning lyrics, fine-tuning, scheming and dreaming where we'll play, etc. We were maniachal and worked very hard in a short time, recording a 3 song e.p. to sell at our first actual show last night at Echo Cafe, the old Java Wava, across from Fresno High. (Our other musical venturings have been at open mic nights at a few different places, as well as an impromptu show at a Tower restaurant, and house parties.)

We like to joke about our really can go very many verbally creative places with it.
For instance, They May or May not Stay. They Might Come and Go, He left, she cried. Ahhh, I know those all sound terribly negative, but truly they aren't. Derrick and I have been having a blast, minus the getting no sleep at all as of is just the simple hard facts, or almost facts that he is probably heading back up to the Bay Area in the fall for a job. Who knows the fate of The Stayers or The Non-Stayers... :) If he jets up to the Bay Area, we may play a weekend of shows every other month, or so, switching from Fresno to the Bay Area.

Allz I know is that right now, I'm learning a lot, I am honored that a friend would allow me to sing what they have written and created, and I love singing for people in various venues. The adventure at least continues through the end of August, as we try to play a few more places.

If it seems that all I do is talk about music on this bloggish thing I call "Delight," it is because hobby or passion wise I tend to go through phases, and sometimes long ones - where I am pursuing something that is in my heart, and tend to spend every spare moment working towards that/doing that/pursuing that...whatever the "that" is. I am so very thankful to those folks that came out to our show at Echo last night, as well as to friends and family who eagerly cheer me on, and believe in our small musical offerings.....(that hopefully will become increasingly GREAT!)

Sporadically updated is this blog I know....I flew away to East Coast a few weeks ago for a family wedding, which was wonderful, and will fly up to the Vancouver area for another family wedding, leaving this week. Apparently getting married is a popular thing to do. And apparently flying half way around North America and back a few times for weddings is the thing that I do. :) It will be a good trip up to Van., but super short! And I'm sure I'll be bringing lyrics and fresh paper and pen along with me for my trip in the skyways...

I will close with the fact that I saw Counting Crows and Augustana in concert last weekend, with a friend of mine. They were BEYOND AMAZING. It was like a traveling musical hippie folk show....sometimes with both bands up on stage singing and playing together, with tons of instruments at the same time - everything from a banjo to a harmonica, to a piano. I have NEVER enjoyed a concert more in my life. I think I was moved by their onstage creative, presence and talent, as well as generally encouraged that I too can do anything I put my mind and heart to, (with God's guidance and help), and that it really is the human's own self that prevents itself from achieving, and aspiring and reaching new heights. I don't wanna box myself in, and play small...

I wanna be a New Heights Reacher....