Hey, everyone! I've been wanting to and thinking about blogging often for the past month but whenever I was in the mood I wasn't around a computer. So, here's a month's worth of update in no particular order:
- Just finished watching City of God, which I think is one of the best movies I've seen all year (since last January, not since the start of this one). Just amazing. Completely brutal and hard to watch. I feel like I almost know too much about Rio's slums, but I'm glad for the education.
- Last week had a great visit with some family down in Mexico, MO, where my grandma lives. Amia did AMAZING on the 7 hour trip there and back. Feels like our leash is getting a little longer as we can travel longer distances more easily.
- We booked our flight to Haifa! We're leaving in late May for Baha'i pilgrimage. On the way we're stopping off in Rome for 3 days. When I found out we'd be staying there for a time I actually punched Suzanne in the arm (lightly) I was so excited. I've been dreaming of going there for some time. And timely too, since I just finished the first season of Rome, a joint HBO and BBC production about the rise of Ceaser and the death of the Republic, which really made it come alive for me. I was watching it thinking, why did they make this. Hmmm...let's see, a controversial leader plunges the state into a lengthy, protracted, exceedingly expensive war, uses the war to gather unprecedented power unto himself, and many of the elected leaders of the land are corrupt and use religion for political purposes. Is this ancient Rome we're talking about?
- I watched Northern Exposure up through the 5th season. I forgot how amazing that show was. Right around the first quarter of the third season it's like they passed adolescence and lost their preoccupation with sex and moved into love, physics, philosophy, art, Beauty, and spirituality.
- Remember that spiritual epiphany I mentioned a while back. I forgot what it was for a while, then remembered while talking with Suzanne. We began a little prayer campaign for 1) ways to pay for pilgrimage, and 2) ways to pay for pre-school for Amia. Ever since my mom passed I've had a hard time praying regularly. I prayed all the time when she was sick, and the more ill she got the more I prayed. But once she passed I haven't really prayed all that much and couldn't figure out why. It wasn't that my relationship with God was damaged, I never lost trust in Him or loved Him less. But I did feel off balance. During the prayer campaign I realized what it was. I feel like in many ways my mom's passing happened in the best possible way. Despite the terrible disease that facilitated her departure from this world, I feel that spiritually she was completely whole and healthy. So in that sense all my prayers were answered. But somewhere within all that was one piece of me that hoped she would live, that she would be whole both spiritually and physically. Once that dream died that piece of hope died too. And somehow that piece of me was tied to my prayer habits. In many ways I think hope is closely related to prayer that one can lead to the other. Praying regularly again for something I really hope for helped that piece of me be resuscitated. And that was a really good feeling.
- We've decided to enroll Amia in pre-school, at least by next fall if not sooner. We're looking for a Montessori or Montesorri--ish kind of place. What we like about that philosophy is the focus on independent learning and investigation, as well as the mixed age groups. We've visited a couple schools in the area and really liked them. We're trying to match quality with places that offer financial aid because being private schools these places are not cheap. Without financial aid it would be equivalent to making payments on a really nice BMW, but with it it's definitely doable. Some of you may remember the big discussion about homeschooling on these pages a while back. Most important for us is the idea of Suzanne and I, and Amia increasingly as she's able, to have a say in the process of education than any particular method, whether homeschooling, Montessori, Waldorf, or public education. Right now, where we live, for us and for Amia, Montessori seems the way to go, but we're open to other forms of education as we go along. We just don't want Amia to ever feel that her education, which to us means knowledge of herself, the world, and how she can act on the world to advance our civilization, is not her own, not authentic and soul expanding. More to come on this in the coming months as we hear back from the schools we've applied to. But we're definitely excited!
- I've been listening almost non stop to this song I Want Candy by Bow Wow Wow. And I don't know why! I researched it a bit and found that the group was begun in the early 80s by the same guy that helped get The Sex Pistols on their feet, and they wanted to mix African rhythms with New Wave music. That's kind of interesting.
- At work a co-worker/friend and I have founded the "Benevolent Order of Jugglers". We meet every week during lunch and teach people how to juggle and practice tricks. It is so fun! Last week's highlight was 2 person passing. We can't wait to unleash this on the world.
I promise it won't be another month before posting!