The driver of tomorrow is not thinking Green...

The driver of tomorrow is not thinking Green...
He's thinking Classic. (click on photo)


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Mar 31, 2011

Song of the Day: Lead Me; Sanctus Real

Life can be difficult for those of us that have the answers. Like a puzzle, we know (think we know) where each piece should go. And the outcome - a gorgeous, fulfilling, glorious photograph. But you know, the world doesn't want to cooperate. It pulls, picks, disrupts, misleads until the fabric of importance is broken.

Some of you that know me will well think "Rebecca, let it go. Move on." But the fact that my children live without an important piece of their life and who they are and the same for Matthew's daughters, will always render pain. I have a cut on my hand from a few years ago. It was little, deep, nicked a nerve. And from time to time, it will twinge, ache, cause me to rub the scar or massage and flex my hand. I imagine it will bother me from time to time for years to come.

As is a scar on the proverbial spiritual heart. There to keep us aware that we are not yet whole and we have yet more work to do.

Which brings me to today's song of the day. As Matt & I have been attending the "Love and Logic" video series class, the first session have been about women. What surprised me was how much the video validated who and why I am what I am as a woman.

And that teenagers need to be watching this before they attempt to venture out into the great battle called relationship. We prepare them for all aspects of life except how to understand the dynamics of male & female. I can educate our girls, but who will educate their son so that my daughters can have a man of insight, discernment, wisdom & worth to marry? There's this unwritten expectation that we all just jump in and duke it out, hoping to be the less than 50% that makes it all the way to the end. It's one of the most important decisions we make because it is an event that is life altering - good and/or bad. A choice most of our kids will make - who to hook up with if you will, who to give your internal self, your soul to - and we spend little time preparing them for what is to come. Men and women are DIFFERENT. Not wrong. Just different. (That's an understatement)

This song played on the way in to work today and I thought it truly captures the spirit of most woman's heart AND a child's longing. Whether boy or girl, all kids want to be loved & cherished by their own parent. And often we fool ourselves with the old phrase "children are resilient" to give ourselves an out. If that were true, why are there so many walking wounded adults in the world today? Why is alcoholism, drug addiction, pornography, infidelity ruling our people, destroying lives & taking names? Many start as attempts to sooth inner pain and connect. Male & female, both need connection and at some level, crave relationship.

So I blog and I remain passionate about what I learn. And I hope as He works it out through my keyboard, it touches someone today.

Mar 29, 2011

Japan in Crisis

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Song of the Day: Song of Hope, Rob Seay Band

Rob's quick note about the song.

I particularly like this video someone put together to the song because the photos they used are like the ones in our own personal library. "I will sing a Song of Hope, sing along! Just to know that you are near is enough." Right on!

Mar 21, 2011

Song of the Day: Hold Us Together, Matt Maher

One of my favorite songs. Saw this guy Matt Maher recently in concert. Great stuff.

Mar 20, 2011

Song of the Day: Nothin' on You Bruno Mars

Wow, what sweet sweet music. I love this new artist. Word has it...that our elementary principle's daughter is dating Mr. Mars and this song is for her. Checking on the truth of that little kid rumor... ;) I'll post the Grammy video if I can find it. I LOVE this because he's in the studio and just the purity of his voice is awesome.

Nothin' on You Baby.

Signs of "Parentism"

The beautiful "Mom" pendant my 15 year old daughter bought me for Christmas last year. The mini van. The frazzled hair? No make up face? iPod, Calendar, checkbook? 5 bedroom house? Baseball bags, soccer balls & game chairs in the trunk? My smile when I see or hear a kid in passing through my day. No? Well then definitely, the 5 gallons of milk I carry out of Safeway every 4 days, the fact that our neighbors hear our garage door up & down, first thing early Sat morning, all day long, as our cars drive all over the local earth distributing children. No sleeping in is a sure sign of parentism.

Surely, it's a dream and I really live in a Penthouse, drive a BMW and travel the globe, camera and journal in hand.

Wouldn't miss one garage door opening for all the single life in the world. But I am beginning to dream of, with a rush of excitement, our kids walking into the sunset, to their own dreams, college, love, life and our retirement, motorcycles, motorhome, 80's rock music, flamingos, beach and sun.

Mar 17, 2011

MSNBC Japan Radiation

My comment "I don't believe the government is going to tell us everything we need to know about this radiation problem"

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Mar 16, 2011

Aww Yea 2 Minutes - Business Time Flight of the Conchords

It's WEDNESDAY! What Wed wouldn't be complete without church, followed by 2 minutes of Business Time? HA!

This video was done in 2006, about the time Matt introduced me to these guys. Since then they've become quite popular. You may be thinking "hmmm, where have I seen that guy?". Jemaine Clement played the artist in "Dinner for Schmucks" (a riDONKulous schmucky movie that was a waste of valuable resources).

Time for the recycling....

Mar 12, 2011

Song of the Day: Sing a Song - Third Day

I love this jammin' Third Day song but I couldn't find a really great video of it. Guess I'll have to make one!

Hope it gets your hips moving, your feet tapping and your hands in the air this fine Saturday morning. Blessings!

50 Things to say to your children: Janel Breitenstein

Janel Breitenstein

1. I’m proud of you. And even if you weren’t so fantastic, I’d still be proud.
2. I believe you.
3. The way you _____ is such a perfect addition for our family. God knew just what we needed when He gave us you.
4. I know you and I haven’t been seeing eye-to-eye lately. But I want to let you know that I accept you whether I agree with you or not, and I’m committed to working on our relationship so we both feel understood and secure.
5. I can’t believe how _____ you are. I can’t imagine the plans God has for you!
6. You know, you may not feel very _____, but God knew exactly what He was doing when He made you the way He did, and it was just how He wanted to express Himself. I love you just the way He made you. And I wouldn’t have wanted Him to do it any differently.
7. No matter how royally you mess up, I’ll always be glad you’re mine, I’ll forgive you, and I’ll love your socks off.
8. I saw how you _____. I’m so proud of you.
9. I forgive you. And I won’t bring this up again, okay?
10. I want to hang out with just you tonight. What do you want to do?
11. I remember when I _____. I felt so _____. I don’t know if that’s like what you’re going through, but it was a tough time for me.
12. I’m sorry. Will you please forgive me for _____?
13. I got you this, just because.
14. Lately I’ve really seen you grow in the area of _____, like when you _____.
15. Yes, there is food in the house.
16. I admire the way you _______. In fact, I could learn a lot from you in that area.
17. That was a really wise choice.
18. No chores today.
19. I trust you.
20. You’re really growing into a young man/woman of character. I can’t tell you how exciting that is!
21. Go ahead and sleep in tomorrow.
22. I had no idea you could do that! You impress me.
23. What do you think?
24. I canceled your appointment with the dentist.
25. I love your dad/mom so much! He/she is so _____.
26. I love being around you.
27. I’m so glad you’re home.
28. Thank you!
29. I love doing _____ with you.
30. You are one of the best gifts I’ve ever gotten. I am so humbled God gave me you.
31. I feel so proud when I’m with you.
32. You handled that so well.
33. I made your favorite _____.
34. I’m trusting that God will take perfect care of us. He’s always done it before! Can we pray together about this?
35. With God’s help, your dad/mom and I will never, ever get a divorce.
36. That looks great on you.
37. If I were in your shoes, I would feel so _____. Is that how you feel?
38. Would you turn your music up?
39. You are so well-disciplined in _____.
40. I sent you a big ol’ care package in the mail.
41. That was so courageous.
42. Do you feel like I’m understanding you?
43. If there were one thing you could change about me as your mom/dad, what would it be?
44. You have some real gifts in the area of _____.
45. Let’s go to Grandma’s!
46. It is so cool to watch you grow up.
47. Just wanted to let you know I’m praying for you.
48. I miss you, but I’m glad you’re having a good time!
49. You make me so happy just by being you.
50. I love you so much.

This article originally appeared on MomLife Today, FamilyLife's blog for moms at all stages of life and motherhood.

Mar 11, 2011


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Whirlpool Japan

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Japan 8.8 Tsunami in motion

Wow you think. A Tsunami. That must be frightening. Yes, but have you seen one in motion? I haven't. Until now and it was incredible. This video awakens the mind to the absolute power of the ocean. Of our world when it decides to take over the territory we humans think we own & control. Now I don't have to imagine the horror of massive water flowing. I see it with my eyes. Removing everything in it's path. Some of this video reminded me of watching lava flows in Hawaii. The slowness of something so beautiful and deadly. One of the clips shows the water moving towards a road, where there are 2 cars driving (probably psycho news crews, ha!). It is really incredible.

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The Irresistable Man: Dennis Rainey

The next time you stop at McDonald's, try this. At the counter, say, "I'd like to have a hamburger, fries, and a Coke, please." Then listen carefully to the cashier. If she's worth her salt, she'll ask you, "Will that be large fries and a large Coke?" You see, a well-trained cashier would never ask, "Will that be small fries and a small Coke?"

What's the difference?

Just millions of dollars. Changing one word—large instead of small—is called "suggestive selling." That's no accident. McDonald's intentionally places a positive thought in your mind about buying the large size. Why? The company's research shows that customers will, more often than not, sink their teeth into the larger order if presented with the larger option.

Understanding customer behavior isn't small potatoes.

When multiplied by millions of orders a month, tens of millions of extra dollars a year flow into hungry cash registers—all because the company took the time to know the customers.

McDonald's is so committed to understanding its clientele, it even knows most customers prefer to bite into a hamburger and taste the ketchup before the mustard.

What does all this have to do with romance? Plenty. The success McDonald's has experienced as the world leader of fast-food franchises came about because the company became a careful student of the customer. In the same way, one key to thriving in your relationship is to understand your wife. This is not to suggest that you should try to manipulate her. Rather, as you invest time and effort to understand your wife, you'll discover how to define romance using your wife's dictionary. I have to admit that I defined romance for years using my distinctly male dictionary. We men spell romance: S-E-X. However, I've learned when I want to communicate romance with Barbara, I'd better understand how she defines the word! As a husband does this, he understands the three nonnegotiables for a romantically satisfying relationship: security, acceptance, and an emotional connection. Let's unpack these one at a time.


If a man heard somebody breaking into his house in the middle of the night, what guy wouldn't grab a baseball bat and defend his wife and his children against the intruder? That's a given. But did you know that your wife is, in many ways, under assault every day? Look carefully, and you'll discover there are all kinds of forces that have already broken into her life; they've already compromised the security of your home life.

Who are these intruders?

Often they come in the form of unresolved issues from the past—wounds from abuse, from family abandonment, from poor choices in the past, or from a divorce. These trespassers might not be obvious to you on the surface, but they can rob your wife's sense of well-being years after the fact.

For example, when Barbara and I were first married, I had no idea that she had experienced some painful things growing up. Some of those wounds began to surface about 15 years into our marriage. I'm going to purposefully be vague because what she had experienced was not as important as how I responded. When the persistent invaders finally came out of the shadows, I did my best to comfort her and express the love of Christ to her.

Although I didn't always know what to do, I didn't run from her wounds. I didn't deny she'd been hurt. I tried to let her know that she was loved and that our relationship was a safe place for her to begin to heal. And I asked God to give me wisdom to know how to encourage her. God does answer prayer.

Even as I shouldered the burden with her, I knew we could use some added help from a counselor, so we made arrangements for counseling. Barbara would say today that those days were very challenging, but going through the experience together enabled her to be liberated ultimately.

Past issues are not the only unwelcome guests that threaten a wife's security. She desires to know her husband is committed to providing financial security in the home. Do you take the lead in establishing a family budget and pay off bills in a timely manner that creates security, or do you create fear with reckless financial decisions?

She wants a relationship built upon the bedrock security of a husband who refuses to follow his temptations. Are you a man in control of your passions, or do you lack self-control? And when she is subjected to a cruel or emotionally abusive co-worker, family member, or friend, she needs a husband who will defend her. Do you protect her emotionally from any person who is trying to take advantage of her by going to that person and verbally shielding her?

What vandals threaten her security? Does she struggle with the memory of an abortion, sexual abuse, or her parents' divorce that robs her joy today? Are there unhealthy influences or relationships in her life? Does she fear the future: growing old, children leaving home, the loss of parents and friends?

If so, how do you plan to evict these home invaders?

Allow me to suggest that you do not try to "fix" it or "fix" her. Most importantly, I'd encourage you to pray with and for her. Do not underestimate the power of praying for your wife. Pray simply, but pray out loud. Take her by the hand and ask God for wisdom and help with the task. Proverbs 2:6 (NKJV) assures you that "the LORD gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding." Ask God to guide you.

Secondly, I'd encourage you to repeatedly verbalize your love and commitment to her. Your wife may be about to take on an emotional giant in her life and she needs to know that you are standing with her and for her. Remind her that you promised "for better or worse."

Third, give her the freedom to process what she is experiencing emotionally with you. This kind of conversation means that you become a safe haven in an emotional storm. Let her talk without offering a solution. Comfort her with words of understanding that create hope.

It's a wise husband who can look back into his wife's life and evaluate how she has been affected by past events rather than sit back and be critical of how she was raised, or make negative comments about the parents who raised her. Instead, the prudent husband will serve as a healing ointment, a salve of love, one that fosters an environment where healing takes place.

Romance thrives in a secure relationship.


When it comes to acceptance, every man should take a page from the Song of Solomon and apply it to his marriage. You see, Solomon knew the importance of elevating his wife's beauty, her appearance, her dignity, her worth, and her value as a woman. As you'll see in a moment, he carefully chose his words to communicate how beautiful she was to him. Such praise and affirmation are essential for a woman to hear. Acceptance begins with an understanding of what your wife is feeling about herself.

Does she feel good about the way she looks? Her hair? Her clothes and shoes? Her weight? Her skin tone? Her body image? Her teeth? Her overall attractiveness? Chances are good that she compares herself to the airbrushed models of perfection she sees every day. From the covers of the magazines in the checkout line to the advertisements she watches on television, your wife is constantly made to feel inferior, unworthy, and unacceptable.

Solomon recognized his bride's need for affirmation and didn't hesitate to go beyond mere acceptance. He lavished praise on her. He said, "I liken you, my darling, to a mare harnessed to one of the chariots of Pharaoh" (Song of Solomon 1:9). Now, before you try that line on your wife, keep in mind the context. The picture was of Solomon's finest mare, most likely an Arabian beauty, a dark creature of unquestioned magnificence. It was the finest horse that money could buy. This exotic creature would have turned heads—maybe even caused a stampede because of her exquisite beauty. In other words, Solomon used poetic language to tell his wife that she was magnificent.

But that's not all.

Solomon quickly added, "Your cheeks are beautiful with earrings, your neck with strings of jewels. We will make you earrings of gold, studded with silver" (Song of Solomon 1:10–11). He not only accepted her and saw her as a woman of great beauty, but he lavished jewelry on her. When was the last time you sprang for a new bracelet? A necklace? A ring? Like Solomon, let your wife know you esteem her greatly by giving her something extraordinary.

When Barbara and I were first married, I realized early on that she needed to be cherished for her beauty. When we started to have children, her body began to change. She wondered if she was still physically attractive to me. I worked at praising her beauty at that stage in our marriage. And now that we've moved into the empty nest years, I can't coast. I understand how important it is for me to continue to praise her. The truth is, I think she's spectacular!

In the same way, your wife longs for unconditional acceptance. She secretly hopes you'll notice and commend her various qualities—her receptivity and obedience to God, her personality, her faithfulness in raising children and making a home. Because you are the most important person in her life, your affirmation and acceptance unleash an inner beauty and a confidence that radiate.

Emotional connection

Marriage is a partnership that takes teamwork. Some men fail in their partnership because they don't make an emotional connection with their wives. Heidi, who attended one of FamilyLife's Weekend to Remember getaways, writes, "My husband does nothing to help me around the house. I am just plain tired. I do all the laundry, dishes, cooking, cleaning, everything after working all day ... oh, we'll stay married, but I just know we could be happier."

Did you know that when you participate in family life by sharing in some of the daily duties, you connect with your wife on an emotional level? Men spell romance s-e-x, but women spell romance r-e-l-a-t-i-o-n-s-h-i-p. Working together around the house or in the yard (Barbara's other domain) is a great way to communicate your love for your wife.

Another way to connect emotionally is to compliment your wife. Proverbs offers this pointer: "Pleasant words are like a honeycomb, sweetness to the soul and health to the bones" (16:24 NKJV). How often do you praise your wife for what she does? Consider a few of these compliments to brighten her day:

* "Dinner was great! Thank you for always making creative meals, even when you're tired of cooking."
* "I love the way you read books to our kids. That's so much better for them than watching TV."
* "I'm grateful that you carefully budget our paycheck each month."
* "I admire the way you handled yourself with that rude salesman—you have such a winsome approach."
* "The flowers you planted make our home so much more inviting. I appreciate your hard work."

As you work to make an emotional connection with your words and actions, go below the surface to the real issues of life. How? Start to talk with her. For some, this involves a conscious choice. Share with her, for example, what goes on at work—what you're doing well, where you're struggling, the people you're working with, the people you encounter. Most women love hearing all of the details. You'll also discover that she can provide wise counsel on different issues you're facing.

Finally ask your wife questions about what she is feeling, and then listen to her. One way I do this with Barbara is to ask questions that can't be answered with a "yes" or "no." For example, I might ask her, "How did that exchange with our teenage son make you feel?" Making the effort to know specifics about her background, her favorite things, and her dreams all communicate to her, "I want to know you. I want to be your soul mate."

A favorite question that I asked Barbara was, "What is the most courageous thing you've ever done in your life?" Try that question on a date night with your wife, and give her time to think about her answer. You might consider sharing how you would answer the question. Here are ten other questions to help you make the connection:

1. What is one of your earliest childhood memories?
2. What is one thing from your past that you struggle with?
3. What was one of your proudest achievements before we met?
4. What was your relationship with your dad like? How about your mom?
5. At what did you place your faith in Christ as your Savior; what were the circumstances?
6. What would you say was our best family vacation, and why?
7. What is your favorite book in the Bible? Hymn? Why?
8. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you like to live?
9. What dreams do you have for our children?
10. What do you long to experience with me in our marriage?
11. What do you want to accomplish after the kids are grown?

As you study your wife and learn how and when to build security, acceptance, and emotional connection into your relationship, you will become an irresistible man. And let me make one last practical suggestion: When you come home from work, here are four of the most romantic words to say to your wife: How can I help? You'll never go wrong asking this question any time of the day or night. Those words are music to her ears because they demonstrate that you desire to connect to her world. Why not try it—and mean it—tonight?

Adapted by permission. Rekindling the Romance by Dennis and Barbara Rainey, ©copyright 2004. Thomas Nelson, Inc. Nashville, Tennessee. All rights reserved. Copying or using this material without written permission from the publisher is strictly prohibited and in direct violation of the copyright law.

Mar 10, 2011

Song of the Day: Cinderella Steven Curtis Chapman

Are you missing out on your children's lives? Did you dance with your daughter, when she needed your feet? Stay tuned for the interview at the end of the video. Wow, that's our night every night with Ryan. I need to stop grumbling and snuggle in.

The rest of the story is that shortly after this interview, one of those daughters was killed in a terrible family tragedy. Their teenage son accidentally hit her in the driveway of their home. Which Steven has talked about this song, written right before his daughters death, took on an entirely different purpose & meaning.

Please - don't miss another step.

Mar 9, 2011

Another Brick in the Wall - an alternate view

"We don't need no education
We don't need no thought control
Hey, teacher leave the kids alone!
All in all you're just another brick in the wall."

What a great song. I remember watching The Wall for the first time in late adolescent. I think I was first introduced to Pink Floyd in our weekend drives with Pete & Lenny in the famous Datsun. Watching the lights of Medford from the east hillside, jamming to great music. No, no drugs. Simple friendship bonded by great LOUD rebellious music. Later I was introduced to the movie by my ex husband. Loved it.

My parents were terrible parents. They shielded me. Which was odd since they were PRIME 60's flower kids. Aww yea. I was a product of a 17 year old teenage mom. My dad, a prime college student, boy from the Eastside of town. You know, up on the hill. One of those. The blonde hottie (yes my mom was hot) gets the college guy (who was also quite hot, I've seen the abs). Together, combined, they taught me morals, values, boundaries, to think, not expect, act, EDUCATE and a word - NO. Hmmmm. Interesting considering they are late baby boomers. Free everything and yes to all.

So when I first heard this song, it resounded to my adolescent brain. NO more! Period! Stop forcing me into YOUR way of thinking. One of the best that will go in to history.

As it rotated into my shuffle during my run, it took a different tone. I heard it on the other side. As a parent in 2011. Ironically this music that played into our psyche's may have actually whipped us into submission instead of rebellion. We are a generation of tolerant parents. We've been taught that it's not okay to have standards for ourselves or our kids. That it's not okay for teachers to have behavior expectations at school or apply consequences and discipline to the kids when they step out of line. Instead of reigning in those that would break children, who should NEVER have been allowed in the school system, we've run to the extreme and tied all of their hands.

We are wimpifying our boys, the next generation of men. Girls rule, boys drool. The classroom is set around a girls way of thinking. Boys are asked to be quiet, not to have outburst, perhaps drugged to conform. Yelled at by playground volunteers if they use star wars gun hands or lightsabers on the playground. The girls are running with power. Boys feeling inadequate and something is wrong with them. The same boys that will be men. There are plenty of studies out there fighting against this poor thinking and yet, as parents - we've become just one more brick in the wall. We sit in our place and watch, letting others tell us what we shouldn't do and allow the formation of the next generation with their own agendas.

As our kids enter junior high, we're expected to take a step back and let others have our children. Mold them, form them, tell them what is right and wrong as the world see it. We feel weird, incapable, feel resistance and annoyance should we stand up and say something silly, like - HEY! I'M the parent and I want to be involved! As the government looks on and some unseen future comes. Our kids may be weak, unable to fight and look on from their own place in the wall. And they've been taught in their own way, definitely do not ask, tell, fight back, have expectation, standards, question. Even as they hear your parents, your teachers, the adults in your life, do NOT know anything and not only are they stupid, they don't have any right to discipline or attempt to direct you, they learn to accept and not create any waves. The Matrix comes to mind.

Maybe, if we were raising generations of fighters, 91101 would have had a different ending. Instead of allowing Hollywood, sports, tv, radio, the medical science industry finagle their way into guiding out kids and returned to where it should start - the home - Americans wouldn't be seen as a country ripe for takeover. Plugging ourselves in to the latest technology, isolating ourselves from each other, medicating ourselves in various ways, addicting ourselves to everything possible, relying upon industry to provide and meet our every need - we are being controlled and in our silliness, saying we don't want to be. We have become. Another brick in the wall.

Don't worry about the feel of cement hardening around your brain. The end won't hurt. We're already asleep.

Song of the Day - "Forgiven" Sanctus Real

Song of the Day. I don't have to carry the weight of who I've been.

Which one of us hasn't failed in some ways? In the most important ways, where it counts the most? Our family? Our marriage? Our children? Work? A friend?

"The past is playing with my head. Failure knocks me down again. That Devil just won't let me forget. In this life, I know what I've been. In your arms, I know what I am. When I don't fit in, don't feel like I belong anywhere. When I don't measure up to much in this life. I'm a treasure in the arms of Christ."

I am thankful.

Mar 8, 2011

"You Are More" Tenth Ave North

I watched it again and really read the board. One thing that stood out in my mind is how huge the board is and it's completely full. So many hurts, so many shameful feelings, so many failures, questions - we walk around the isolated wounded when so many of us, could just reach out a hand and say "I've been there". How can I help you? I related to many, many, many items on this board. Healing is painful and sometimes, I think I'm done, good and a little video comes along to tell me I still have some work to do.

The artwork on the board is what's powerful. Great song.


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