Saturday, February 5, 2011
We had another 14 or so inches of snow this week and another day off from school. The last day of school is now June 22d. Ugh! And we still have most of Feb and all of March to get through. The snow piles all but block the view to the road and make getting out our driveway a bit chancy. Our house is at the top of small rise, and cars coming up the rise come at a clip sometimes, and unless it's dark, I can't tell they're coming, and they can't see me until they're upon the driveway. Now that the sun is peeking over the horizon when I leave for work the headlights don't send as strong a message that there might be cars coming.
We went out to dinner with friends last night. We tried a new-to-us restaurant, a pub inside an old inn, as a matter of fact, and we had a very enjoyable evening. Either this place is not well-known or people were too cold to venture out because we almost had the place to ourselves. We sat in front of an open fireplace with a roaring fire, and enjoyed some fine adult beverages and some good food. The beef was grass-fed and locally raised, and all of the menu items were made on site. We tried some winter squash fritters as an appetizer that were very good, and really enjoyed the peach linzer torte and chocolate chip whoopie pies for dessert!
Before dinner I met with my church's minister - our first monthly minister/moderator meeting. It's just to touch base with each other and to check in on projects, issues, concerns, etc. that either of us has. We definitely live in "interesting times." We're struggling financially as many small (and large churches?) are, but we are also struggling with an aging congregation and questions of lay leadership. In addition we are once again looking for music leadership. Some big questions loom large: How can we make ourselves more visible? How must our music traditions change? How might our worship traditions evolve? How do we interest, attract, and keep people who might be seeking a spiritual base? A group of people will be meeting next week to discuss evangelism. What does the word mean? For many people it's knocking on doors and handing out tracts. It has some negative connotations for some of us who have grown up in the mainline church. For some of us it means hospitality, it means telling everybody about who we are, it means sharing the good news with others, or it means inviting others to join us in our journey. I'm hoping I can get to the meeting, both to stay informed, but more to be a part of the discussion.
We're also heading into a difficult time of year as our school and town budgets are voted upon, and decisions about teaching assignments for next year start being made. Our administrators are beginning to meet with individual staff to discuss evaluations, test scores, professional goals, and some of us will get news we don't want to hear regarding the definite reductions in staff that will take place. It's a very uneasy time for us, and with anxiety, we sometimes become less kind to each other.
The sun has broken through at least temporarily. It's time to think about shoveling off the kitchen roof --- before another few inches of snow and this time, ice, arrive. And there are always the Saturday errands to run!