Sunday, July 3, 2011

Ticked off?

     One of the surprises resulting from our North Carolina camping trip last weekend was finding 4 deer ticks imbedded in my upper thigh on Monday night. I know that sometimes these ticks carry Lyme disease, which is pretty terrible - a coworker of Beth's has been off of work for over 4 years with complications from it. After doing some reading online, especially noting that 7% of cases can be asymptomatic, I decided to call our doctor. He agreed that it's best to play it safe with this kind of thing, so he started me on an antibiotic for 10 days. I don't think we'll end up going back to that campground/festival.
     We went to see Sara Groves in concert on Tuesday in Stratford. I've appreciated and followed her music for almost 10 years now - remember seeing her open for Michael Card shortly after 9/11. Her songwriting is insightful, powerful and beautiful. I was pleasantly surprised to see she was travelling with a full band and her family.
     The last week of school often seems kind of surreal - it's so busy finishing things up in the classroom and life outside of that has seemed especially full - especially the pressure to do something nice for Beth's birthday, which ended up being the last full day of school. Our Thursday night small group was doing a potluck finale that night so I said I'd "take her out" for dinner, wrote a personal card, and pledged that this summer would be my time to learn/relearn how to cook/prepare meals (this is part of my 'retiring before Beth' strategy [that's 3 years from now] - ie. how I can be a support at home when she continues working).
      We ended the last school day by going outside and singing under the shade of a big maple tree (my students sure love that song 'Pharaoh, Pharaoh'!) but I didn't bother to take a chair along out. I sat on the ground and now the last few days have been suffering with some pretty nasty, itchy bites (about 20!).
      Finished reading Ray Bradbury's "Something Wicked This Way Comes" on the school bus trip back and forth to Niagara Falls this week. It's a great book - although pretty dark it does resolve nicely and the dad ends up as quite an heroic figure - and we had a good day at the Falls. Also read Erik Larson's "Thunderstruck" this week. He does a great job weaving history (in this case Marconi's discovery and development of the wireless telegraph in the early 1900's) and horrific crime together.
      We got a really neat email this week from the first child that we had sponsored through Compassion International. He was from the Dominican Republic and is now 31 years old(!), living in Florida I think. He wanted to contact us to say thank you. It turns out he's a singer/preacher/producer and has released some CDs (I just purchased his latest music through iTunes!). Looks like it's in Spanish.
      This past Canada Day weekend has been a chance to visit with folks. We had some families from our Friday night group over for a barbecue on Friday and then went to see the fireworks up at the University. Saturday morning we had breakfast with our friends Olu and Tracey who we only get to see every year or so it seems. Saturday night was a get-together with long-standing friends. Lots of good conversations and laughter.
      A lot less music listening this week: Kerosene Halo - new Mike Roe/Derri Daugherty collaboration (nothing about it blew me away though), The Violet Burning - Chosen and Strength, Pierce Pettis - That Kind of Love

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