Saturday, May 31, 2008

New Book Reviews: Lincoln: The Presidential Archives and Shopgirl

I have been slow in writing and posting book reviews, but I've been playing catch-up and will post them a couple at a time until I've caught up.

The new reviews today are Lincoln: The Presidential Archives by Chuck Wills and Shopgirl by Steve Martin. The Lincoln book is mediocre and not really recommended; the Martin novel is lots of fun, but perhaps not quite as funny as people might expect.

Click here to see the reviews.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Meet My Niece

That's right! My niece has arrived. She's very cute, as you can see below. She's also very far away (4 states), which means I have not actually met her in person. But a trip is being planned to remedy that.
More importantly, there are pictures!
Here is Abigail Nicole. Underneath that hat she has wavy dark hair. I don't know whose hands those are, but that looks like my sister's watch.

Here's the proud father, my brother-in-law Erik. He was so excited that he made sure that this picture was one of the very first pictures he emailed out.

And here's the proud Mama, my sister Amanda.

Everyone is home and doing well. Abigail has a clean bill of health, and word is that the dog is already very protective of the baby. (Given that the dog is a Bichon, though, I'm not sure exactly what her protection would entail.)

Friday, May 9, 2008

Long Time, No Here

I've been busy on Fridays for a few weeks, including being out of the office for a couple of them, so I've neglected to update this blog for a while. My apologies for this.

Life goes on in West Virginia. Nothing terribly dramatic has happened, but I've been kept busy. On April 20, I was officially installed as the pastor here in Fairmont. It was a surprisingly large occasion (I don't really know what I was expecting), including some visitors for Illinois -- Rev. John Sowers and Rev. Howard Kennon and his wife Doris from Country Club Hills. It was a hectic and enjoyable weekend, with lots of conversation and food (of course).

The following week I spent three days in Huntington, WV for our church's Regional Assembly. It was an interesting assembly -- a much smaller event than in Illinois (pleasantly so). I certainly didn't know many people, but I met some more. Although it put me behind in some work back home, it was enjoyable and helpful.

With the warmer weather, I've taken the opportunity to play some golf. It's terrible -- there's a 9-hole course 2 minutes from my apartment; now I have no excuse to not play golf. Even the weather is less of a factor. But it's a good excuse to be outside. I'm trying to enjoy my surroundings -- golf, walking trails, etc. -- because it is really beautiful here and the weather has been gorgeous. This is all to justify my recent investment in such activities, which I took for a test drive earlier this week (I like 'em).

By the way, happy golf news -- and how often can you really have happy golf news. I got my first birdie on Tuesday. Putting from the fringe on a Par 3 (a sharply uphill Par 3), just trying to get it within a foot for a tap-in par (which also would have been cause for celebration). But it just rolled right in.

Church activities progress and keep me busy. The final spring Bible study on Romans started this week, with a much more involved discussion than I expected. I'm preparing for my summer sermon series on the Jewish Monarchy - Saul, David, Solomon, which will last for a still to be determined number of weeks, but which begins on May 18th. And so on.

More later....