Wednesday, January 30, 2008

My simple request...

"God give me patience...or a gun."

Yes, it's that time of the year again folks. The white stuff has started falling from the sky which ultimately means that most people out here who get behind the wheel end up forgetting how to drive. It's like the snow causes basic motor skills required for operating a vehicle to involuntarily shut down.

Seriously people, it's not that hard to drive in. If you could follow these few simple tips it would help me out a great deal:
  1. Do not push the pedal all the way to the floor. If you find yourself slipping as you head uphill, it will not help you to floor it.
  2. Do not drive 5 km/h. You're being paranoid and causing more of a problem to the rest of us on the road that can actually drive the speed limit.
  3. You don't need chains just because there is a little snow on the road.
  4. Do not refer to this as a blizzard. You are only bringing on the ridicule of everyone who has actually lived in the prairies at some time in their life.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Popcorn on the floor...

Yup...there's popcorn on the floor. And the flurries have begun. I've been up since 7:30am. Kids are watching Fraggle Rock. Erin is looking for the remnants of her lung. I'm half finished a Sprite with lime as I await the official start of NHL All-Star Weekend.

I was pondering a post about the core values discussion that I participated in this morning at our church, but then I started to second guessed myself. I always hesitate to write stuff about my own church. It's usually out of fear that someone will misconstrue what I say/write and it'll come back to bite me in the rear. (That couldn't possibly happen though, right?)

I also have a personal struggle with feelings of inadequacies...but that's for another post.

With that being said, I'm trying to process what the core values in a church should look like. My own personal feeling is that core values should be seen and known by every person (whether they know Jesus or not) that enters the presence of a particular church community. For that reason I feel core values need to be free of the Christian-ese lingo. They need to be simple and to the point. But they need to be tangible.

The few that have raced through my brains were these:
  • Scripture - We teach it. We study it. We live it.
  • People - Every person has value and worth, regardless of their economic, spiritual, ethnic, social or physical condition.
  • Authenticity - We're all a mess, so let's get real about it. Let's admit our faults, mistakes and short-comings; let's forgive; let's accept and love each other as we are...and then repeat daily.
  • Relevance - We speak the language of our community so they have a hope of understanding what we're saying.
I could probably add a dozen more. But I think these four hit at my current heartbeat. Thoughts? Additions?

Friday, January 25, 2008

Friday & stuff...

We got back late Wednesday night from Kelowna and our District Staff Retreat. All I will say is that Kelowna is definitely not Banff. But it was still nice to get away. It was a great opportunity to reconnect with some old friends, hang out with my network guys (and their wives), catch up on some sleep (I didn't attend a single morning session), and eat. I also spent a good portion of time with our new young adult's pastor (a good guy and fellow Manchester United fan).

And since our babysitting service was only available until Wednesday night we had to come back early (retreat usually ends Thursday morning) so we could drive the kids to school on Thursday morning. We also had an appointment to take the car in so it could get patched up from our latest incident involving negligent BC drivers. Incidentally we're now driving a Chrysler Sebring for the next week or two.

All in all I'll give the retreat one thumb up, 2 stars and a twinkie.

But back to real life now.

My goals for the wonderful Friday:
  • Purchase coffee (accomplished)
  • Read something
  • Blog (almost accomplished)
  • Play guitar
  • Build Lego
And for a random photo, here's what I've been spending a fair bit of time playing with lately. I'm having some trouble getting the whole setup plugged into the PC though.

Any suggestions?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

$0.88 Reviews...

Somehow I forgot to post this before I left for Kelowna and our District Staff Retreat. But these are from last week. I did rent another movie for tonight, but there won't be a review. But Bryce, you'd be proud of what I got for my $0.88 today!


Obviously I didn't choose this one. And I'll be honest and say that I'm not too sure what to even write about the film. I don't think I had ever watched a musical. So, maybe I was just confused as to why the characters were constantly breaking into song...

I'm sure that as far as musicals go it was probably a pretty good flick. But asking me for my thoughts would be like asking an armless man to carry your groceries for you.


Now this musical I was prepared for. I had heard the soundtrack (and enjoyed it) and read of a number of people (Kerry, Marko, Zach) who raved about it. And after weeks of being unable to scoop up one of the 2 copies in the video store I lucked out.

If you're patient with trying to understand the accents, and if you're able to look past some of the shaky camera work, you're in for a good one. I'll admit that I found it a little slow to start but over time it won me over. It's definitely not your typical Hollywood love story, which is quite nice for a change of pace.

And the music is simply beautiful. Even is you have no desire to see the movie, at least give the soundtrack a listen.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Random recap...

No, I didn't fall off the face of the planet. And no, this isn't going to become a blog dedicated to my highly subjective movie reviews. In an attempt to get back on track, here's a little recap of recent events:
  • Manchester United only needed one half to put 6 in the net against Newcastle. I am still in awe.
  • Bought "Winter" by Jon Foreman, but it's not as good as "Fall"
  • Succumbed to watching some American Idol...I know I've let some of you down, and for that I'm a little sorry. But have you seen some of the wackos out there?!?!
  • My soccer team lost again. Oh why do I even bother to tell you that? I'll let you know when we actually win a game.
  • I'm currently beating Erin in the "Knott Family Reading Contest".
  • If I told you what I'm currently reading I would immediately be voted in as Mayor of Dorkville. I'll ponder telling you when I finish.
  • I borrowed an effects pedal for my electric guitar (I'm unsure what it's called), and I am absolutely becoming enthralled with the sounds it will make. (Sorry Bryce, no banjo as of yet!)
  • It's cheap movie night!

Friday, January 11, 2008

$0.88 Reviews...

The Kingdom

I had high hopes for this one, so maybe I let myself down. I found my head spinning trying to figure out who all the characters were throughout the first 15 minutes of the film. Even though they had names and job titles printed on the screen I often found myself trying to figure out who someone was and why they were even included in the story.

To me it seemed like too big of a build up. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that the FBI team isn't free to make their journey overseas.

No big plot surprises or twists for the most part. Sometimes it was even a bit predictable. No deep character developments. In fact, I thought they could have done much better developing some of the the other players like Jennifer Garner's character.

The ending leaves you with one of those "hmmm" moments. You know, the moments where you take a few more seconds to process what you just heard/saw.

All in all I wasn't too thrilled. Mildly entertaining as far as Thursday night movie watching goes. I'm just glad I didn't spend big bucks to see it in the theatre.

Monday, January 07, 2008

For 2008...

Everyone seems to be making posts about their goals for 2008. I wouldn't want to feel left out, so here's a few of mine. There's even an opportunity for you to have some input into what you'd like to see in a few categories.
  • Books - Let's shoot for 26. It seems to be a number that most people are shooting for, and I'm all for conformity.
  • Blogs - I'd like to keep my Google Reader at a manageable number. I'm thinking under 50. That means a few more cuts are in order. As for my own blog I have decided to remain as random as ever in 2008.
  • Music - Besides writing more of my own, I think I'd like to learn something new. Maybe I can actually learn to read music? Or maybe take some voice lessons? Or learn scales? Or learn to play electric guitar? Or maybe the banjo? I'm open to suggestions on this one.
  • TV - This is simple: watch less. The Writer's Strike is already making me feel like I've accomplished this goal. But should TV start up again, I'm already making a decision to opt out of Lost.
  • Movies - I'd like to do more blog reviews of what I'm watching. No big reason here, I just thought it'd be fun. And maybe you'll get a chuckle out of some of the junk I watch. Just don't judge me too harshly because I'm overly sensitive.
  • Friends - I need some new ones as the old ones still haven't moved any closer to us. Don't worry, if you are currently listed under the category of "friends who live in another province", you can remain as friends. However, if you would like to remove yourself from the list, please contact the site administrator. In all seriousness, I need to spend more time developing some relationships with people.
  • Finances - I need to become more "fiscally responsible" (yeah, I think that's what Erin called it).
You will notice an absence of ministry-related goals. There's a simple explanation for that. Those goals are developed in August and September, not in January. Duh. Either that or I don't have any significant ones. You decide.

Friday, January 04, 2008

$0.88 Reviews...

A local video store rents out new releases every Thursday for $0.88. How can you possibly go wrong for that price? So consider this the beginning of a new blogging least until I grow bored with it, or forget that I started it in the first place. Here's what was playing last night:


When this movie got released it wasn't even on my radar. In fact I had never even thought about watching it until I stumbled upon someone's list of favorite movies of 2007 (I can't even give props as I don't remember who it was...sorry). They listed it under a heading something like "Most Underrated Film of the Year" and even went as far as to compare it to The Princess Bride.

Wow. $0.88 well spent. Very entertaining, creative, and funny film with witches, pirates, falling stars, falling in love, and Robert DeNiro in a dress (I kid you not). I was splitting a gut at some parts while at other moments I was completely engrossed in the fantasy.

I'd be hesitant to show it to a younger audience and if you happen to be in the camp that considers the likes of Harry Potter and Halloween to be a tool of the devil, you may want to pass this one by. But if you haven't heard anything about this one, and you're looking for an evening of entertainment, you may be pleasantly surprised.


This was another one of those films I hadn't heard much about, but Erin had mentioned something about wanting to see it. Since I've been choosing such terrible movies lately I decided to go with her suggestion. It was probably a good idea.

I really don't want to say anything that may ruin the movie, but it deals a great deal with relationships and infidelity. I constantly found myself wrestling with the question "who's to blame in all of this?"

My guess is that you'll likely be taken through a range of emotions that has you identifying with certain characters and feeling sorry for them while you feel complete disgust with others. You'll probably get a few laughs in along the way.

But my highlight of the movie was probably Andy Griffith. He alone made it worth the $0.88.

In other news...

Canada is currently up 2-0 over the USA. It's looking like a Canada-Sweden match up for the gold medal, provided they don't completely check their brains at the door. Which, I hate to say, is entirely possible with this year's team.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

A bunch of stuff...

I'm still considering making a post about some of my goals for the upcoming year. I guess that will be Goal #1: write a post about my goals for 2008.

In the meantime, I'll stick to a recent summary of events.
  • I ended up teaching in the service this last Sunday. It's kind of a long story of how that came about, but let's just say that I had no idea I would be doing it until Friday at about noon.
  • I read "My Story" by Wayne Rooney. It won't be winning any literary awards, but it's got some interesting little tidbits about his life. I'm still flabbergasted that he was making so much money at such a young age.
  • I finished reading "Growing Souls" by Mark Yaconelli. This was a follow up to Contemplative Youth Ministry" and it focuses more on how the contemplative aspects were (and can be) put to use in various youth ministry contexts. Both books have made myself ask some questions about our student ministry. I'll keep you posted on what may come out of this.
  • A bunch of students are coming over to the house this afternoon for what we affectionately refer to as PROXIMITY.
  • I absolutely am loving my new pedal for my guitar. I just wish I could find more time to play with it.