Pitching Wedges and Straw Grasping

A moment of full disclosure: I’ve been staring at my computer for a good 30 minutes. A few minutes ago I got up, walked in the kitchen, ate a brownie, furrowed my brow, and came back. I stared some more. Then I got up, grabbed my pitching wedge, and walked around the block. I like to think when I walk or run and usually at least relatively decent ideas come to me. Nothing. Just blank. Then I started thinking bigger.

I have no idea what this blog will look like a year from now, five years from now. Heck, half the time I don’t know what this blog is going to look like tomorrow. I do know this though: moments of exasperation make you start asking questions. Instead of grasping for random post ideas like a child grasps at a bucket of straws, I started a conversation in my head, “why do we even write this blog?” “does it even matter?” “should we go in a different direction?” and on and on.

It’s funny to me that some of our most elegant ideas and liberating redefinition are born out of exasperation. We have nothing, thus we must change everything to make something better.

The same is true of marriage.

My dad used to tell me “Kyle, the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.” He was either talking about my dating life or my baseball career, I don’t remember which, but that quote stuck with me.

When Jen and I fight about the same things over and over again, out of sheer desperation we must change the way we interact, the way we treat each other. When we’re “going good” nothing shifts. If it ain’t broke…

Therefore those moments of tension are not ones we necessarily look forward to, but they are catalysts for change, predecessors of a better future together, and for that I am thankful. So even as we despise it, we must lean into our arguments and rather than letting them define us, we must use them to become more like Christ.

Now if only I could figure out this blogging thing…..

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Three Quarter Year Crisis

Today, girls are wearing boots and scarves.
Lawns are being cut for the last time.
Acorns are leaping from the trees and little kids are walking home from school with their parents. In jeans.

Trees are whispering to each other, “Is it time?” “Yes, it’s time…”
Handmade quilts are being added to beds so the windows can be left open all night.
Fresh fruits are starting to hibernate while soups, rested and ready, make their comeback in large proportions.
Cardigans and fleece blankets and warm colors sneak back into our lives while the air just smells of holidays.
Days are getting shorter and indoor project lists longer, though our evening walks last twice as long as usual.
Jackets add fun and whimsy back into our wardrobes, which are begging for variation.
The world craves more weather like this, and I crave apple pie.
There’s a desperate plea from the single masses for someone to love for the holidays.
Soon the world will smell of rich sweets and hearty meals and dusty heaters and cinnamon sticks.
And that’s a lovely thing.
For this, my friends, is fall.

And with fall upon us, we prepare for our first winter of marriage together. This year, nobody has to leave late at night in the cold.

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Leadership and Lists

Found this awesome list in a new magazine we started getting yesterday called Whole Living. Highly recommended so far. Of course we’re only 24 hours in and our emotions are about as stable as the fault lines in San Francisco so that could change. But for now, we’re good.

Anyway, we can’t let a great list like this pass without a little commentary (our numbers match up with theirs):

1. Very true, if you’ve ever fasted for longer than a day you can actually feel this happening.

3. Does anybody actually have good posture? I can feel the scoliosis ravaging my body with each passing day in the office…

5. Probably the hardest one on here for us to abide by. Either that or we just keep too much stuff. Also, I promise we’re not sitting here and talking about how Kyle’s going to do the odds and Jen’s going to do the evens and it’s going to be soo cute. Promise.

6. I’ve found there to be far more to learn out of school than in. Some of Seth Godin’s followers agree.

7. Profound (and Biblical) but easily the most difficult.

10. This sounds fairly intuitive and yet so many people (myself included) rely on their knowledge and experience. And why shouldn’t they? Those are the weapons of leadership that got them to where they are. It’s funny though, how easily personal proficiency in a specific art can lead to hubris faster than you can Google “hubris” to make sure I spelled it correctly (I did). Instead, let the Lord reign in your heart and be led by that. Nothing else.

Monday, Monday

Here are a few things that I can’t stop thinking about this week. Thought they might be worthy of sharing. Happy one week from Labor Day!

1. The Word

I know it shouldn’t be an unusual occurrence for me to be smitten with the gospel, but I’m human, and it is. We had a guest pastor preach the sermon at church this weekend, and while those are always risky (they never tell you in advance because attendance will be severely affected) this guy was dead on. Sure he was mildly entertaining, his story lines were good, but I somehow came away with a hunger for the gospel like I haven’t had in a long time. And to me, that’s the best thing you could ever walk away with.

2. My Impending Employment

Yes, it’s true. I might actually get a job this week. I wouldn’t be climbing any corporate ladders any time soon, but I’d be wrapped up in a place I love with interesting things and inspiring people. More to come. But probably only if I get the job.

3. This Song

I’ve hardly been able to listen to his new album because I’m still dwelling on his old ones. Go Ray.

4. This Machine

Dear Singer Featherweight. It’s true that I didn’t even know you existed until three days ago, but it was love at first sight. I’ll do whatever it takes to make you mine. Love, Jen.

What’s on your mind this week?

Photo Attribution: Bench | Bible | I’m For Hire | Ray Lamontagne | Singer Featherweight


Thoughts From This Week

I’m thinking about maybe turning this Thoughts From The Week thing into our Sunday post much like we post links to other awesome blogs/sites/products/stories on Saturdays. Weekends are weird on blogs (people don’t read nearly as much) but we’ll try to keep things fresh and original over here. Try being the key word there. Onto a few things I thought this week:

  1. We played tennis yesterday, it was a train wreck in the same way experiencing Lindsay Lohan is a train wreck: dramatic, hilarious, at times enjoyable, and an intense desire to bathe afterwards.
  2. One of our friends (this girl) came down to have brunch with us on Saturday (well she didn’t solely come down to eat and talk for 2 hours with us, but we don’t have a lot of friends down here so just let us imagine it that way!) and it was awesome. We talked about theology, weddings, sports, travel, and food…you know, the types of things old friends should talk about, it was like an excerpt from Eat, Pray, Love and I was James Franco (in my head anyway).
  3. The new Ray LaMontagne album is fresh (I’m trying to branch on my descriptive adjectives…forgive me).
  4. Why is shopping for groceries the married couple equivalent of the Peloponnesian War? Should it really be that difficult to select a group of edible products you can both agree on for a given period of time (in our case 7 days). I feel like I have to armor up like Brad Pitt in Troy every time we walk in Kroger. I should really probably take it easy on the movie star comparisons….
  5. Groupon is doing for date nights what Dungeons and Dragons did for the 18-25 year old geeky American male. It’s a revolution.

Enjoy that Sunday afternoon nap  I know you’re about to take…

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Thoughts From The Weekend (in case you were wondering):

Marriage:Dating as PF Changs:Chili’s – Chili’s is fine, and it’s good to go there with friends and eat decent food but then when you go to PF Chang’s you find yourself saying things like “wait, why did we go to Chili’s? We never want to go back to Chili’s, we just want to stay at PF Chang’s forever. How is Chili’s still in business?” And thankfully, since this is a hypothetical SAT-style statement, you do in fact get to stay at PF Chang’s forever…despite the real-life monetary difference

The list of “places I would lobby for us to live at if we ever just randomly stopped paying rent and got evicted” goes something like 1. The 13th fairway at Augusta National 2. Barnes & Noble 3. Aspen Coffee and 4. Either of our parents homes…

We had friends in town from Oklahoma this weekend. I told Jen tonight “it was nice to interact with other human beings today…” Maybe this blogging/writing thing is affecting us more than we realize? Mix in a trip out the front door?

I just realized I made my visiting friend sleep on an unwashed quilt we bought from Canton that may or may not be from one of the last two centuries…oops

My sister and I thought of a new family slogan as we were swerving all over the highway tonight while my mom was yelling at the top of her lungs (on “accident”) into her phone at the person we were trying to meet up with and everyone else in the car (including the swerving driver) was trying to iPhone/GPS/become a cartographer real quick and map a Cheesecake Factory for us to go to: “The Porters – A Lot More Stressful Than We Should Be” – If that doesn’t inspire strong community and deep relationships then…well…I give up. Oh, and we ended up at a tiny Mexican restaurant in a mall right next to like 120 ice skating kids under the age of 7. Good times all around!

And last but not least…Congrats to some old friends on a new undertaking.

See y’all back here tomorrow, enjoy a relaxing Sunday!

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