Savannah and Sweet Tea

"Helllooooooooooo Kristin!", chirped Eric happily on my voicemail. "Guess what? Bob didn't get a truck over the 4th of July weekend and I will be helping him move this weekend instead. Call me and hope to catch up with this weekend!". I thought yay, old Savannah friend visiting and I get to meet a fellow Savannah refugee as well! With that, I cleared my calendar for Saturday and called back to set up a time to meet Eric and Bob. I was looking forward to catching up with Eric, but more interested in picking Bob's brain (his old neighbor) on his reasons on moving from Savannah to Atlanta.


Normally when people ask me where I moved from and I say Savannah, the response I receive back is, "Oh, I love Savannah" or "Why would you leave Savannah?" The body reactions that correlate with those statements also has this vacant look of disbelief in their eyes.You know  the look where you just can't believe what you are hearing so you lean closer and your eyes squint together as you are proccesing the information that is being presented. If it is not the look of disbelief, it is the wistful reminiscent look of  remembering a weekend adventure with friends exploring the old town squares lined with majestic old oaks dripping with Spanish moss (or too long of a night on Riverstreet). I do have to admit, one of my favorite times of the year is in October, when the air is starting to finally get that slight touch of crispness in the air. The world comes alive again with festivals, activities, and people just out enjoying the fact they will not melt upon opening up their front door.I can feel thebright sun gently beating down on me in the late afternoon, my sneaker ladden feet beating briskly on the cobblestone pavement on a nice long run past antebellum homes of a bygone era. Yes, that is something that can not be matched elsewere.


Yes, I have a strong appreciation for the art, architecture, and the cultural oddities that simply can not be found outside of the Savannah. However, when asked if I will ever move back there..err…no.  I start to shiver like someone had just tossed a big Mickey D's sweet tea on my back as a mean joke. It was funny as I met Bob at his new apartment in Decatur. The look on his face was of total peace and his eyes were soft with a gentle twinkle. He was in a new world, new adventure, new possibilities. Seriously, if I was a white male nearing 40  and had  curly brown hair, you could have sworn that was me..that was my look of bliss.  Eric, Bob, and I ran around that day all over Atlanta, with me playing tour guide. It was quite empowering to be able to point out different places to go and what was fun.  We capped off the day with a first for all, The Vortex.

I would like to pause for a moment to give a few thank yous out. Thank you to The  Vortex for the awesome Black and Blue burger and its ice cream scooped sized dollop of  blue cheese on the burger.  It was enough cheese to spread over a few meals and then some.  Oh and thank you to the 4 foot and a couple of pieces of change Asian dude (with a half shaved head) at the new bakery across the road from The Vortex. Dude was fluttering around in his apron that puddled on the floor (literally) like he was enjoying something other than sweets in between customers (if you catch my drift). I still smile as he came around the counter to look at the chocolate mousse cupcake I was interested in in the glass case. Dude stared at the cupcake  and smiled the biggest of smiles and said yah (softly and with California cool kind of drawl) when I said I would take the chocolately confection. My purchase of the cupcake rocked his world or at least whatever he had been puffing on did.  

By human nature we are always looking for something else. It doesn't have to be a bad thing. We live in places for a time and a reason. But, there comes a time when we must move on and grow as human beings and just experience life. To me we would be truly denying ourselves the beauty of life if we don't jump out and see what is out there.  As Martha Stewart says, "It is a good thing.". 


So, will I move back to Savannah? I highly more than likely will not ever do so (only if there is a God forbid emergency or a super fantastic rich man that is looking for a true Southern belle (I can change,right? :) Do I appreciate the time I spent there? Of course. Is there a bigger world outside of Savannah? Resoundly yes.


Now, if you will excuse me, I need to go find a towel and dry off.


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Why talk it out? Just delete.

I am hoping and praying Staples will be able to fix out the kinks in their EASY buttons. Because, once they do I am going to HQ myself and suggest that they start working on a DELETE button. I don't think people realize that if you delete someone off your Facebook page all your issues and problems will all just magically disappear! Isn't that just the most awesomest idea! I should happen to know, it has happened to me twice (well it is more like three times..two people, one did a double delete). I've been sleeping easy so it, MUST work.


I joke about it, but truly it is sad. Technology is a blessing and a curse. FB allows you to keep in touch with friends across the miles and smile when you see that a childhood friend is doing well and be a loving parent to their children. But, I have noticed it will bring out the worst in people too. Both times, I spoke what I had to say (I have peace about it)  was the truth and was meant to help the person, not harm. With both persons, I received either random texts or messages, or a 'shout out' in on their statuses. The assault of course did not achieve theri purpose so I was given  the big boot off their ,do I dare say, 'friend list' with out laughing too hard. I do take into account, if this had happened in the 1980s or some other time without social media, I would have probably had my hair pulled or my name scribbled with a deraugatory word next to it on the bathroom stall. But…


The point I think I am trying to make is , social media has acted as an enabler in making people lazy to a point (some more extreme, of course) about having to maintain a real friendship or face problems when they are in your face. If either of the above two had just said to me "Kristin, what you said well it bothered me and well it kind of hurt me, Can we talk?". I would have said "Yes. Meet over coffee (or your beverage of choice)?" and we would have talked. Whether or not our opinions or the facts would have changed by the end of the evening..that is fine. Hopefully at least, a feeling of mutual respect would have been at least achieved by then. The person(s) would have at least known I am in their corner, even if it is not what they want to hear. Just know that I took the time to care. 


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Home is Where the Heart is..

The Painter family draws their roots heavily from the coal mining towns of West Virginia. I have always known something about the Painter side of the family, but much is still cloaked in a lot of mystery. My grandfather, Tennis Painter (who I only met a couple of times as a baby) was a preacher for the Methodist church who blazed up and down the WV countryside holding tent revivals in the cool mountain evenings while ministering to the locals at several different churches on Sunday. In addition to his pastoral duties, he worked the coal mines, eventually obtained his college degree, and

taught school (while still pastoring and raising a family). Although, I never had the privilege of meeting him and getting to know him as youngster or much less as an adult, I truly learned more about him and my roots on a trip with my Dad to a coal camp historical site in Beckeley, WV over the July 4th weekend.


For some reason, a part of me really wanted to travel and see this coal mine exhibition in Beckley as soon as I saw the brochure lying around my Dad's apartment located in the heart of the "city" of Saint Mary's just along the Ohio River. My Dad, being the fussypot, that he is complained about it being so far away, but eventually agreed to go. As he was fussing about the distance I was muttering to myself "if he did not drive 15 miles under the speed limit all the time, it would not be a full day excursion". Anyhoo, Saturday morning, we hopped into his 2007 white Ford Focus and puttered through town and down the quiet highways to Beckley. Despite the difficulty of getting him to go, I knew he was going to enjoy going to seeing a part of his life that he knew as a kid and in my heart, I knew in my heart that I was going to learn a bit more than what a coal mine. Conversation on the way was typical, a few short minutes of general chatter, then silence. Dad blowing on his pipe filled with Borkum Riff tobacco out the window (which he claims bothers no one if you don't inhale..heard that one before somewhere?) and me staring out the window admiring the hillsides filled with farms running for acres bursting with ripenining corn and periodically interspersed with patches of Queen Annes lace in full summer splendor.

As we approached the coal mine exhibition, my natural tendencies to be a curious cat, perked up immediately. The city of Beckley has an area set up in a way similar to how coal mining camps were set up years ago, the prestigous Supervisors house, the eternal bachelors shack, a family home, and the company store. The company store back in the early 1900s was run by the mining company where the coal miners used their scrip (which is what they were paid in) to purchase the necessities of life. Much to my delight, the man giving the tour into the coal mine was a coal miner who had actually  worked in the mines for 24 years and was a true southern West Virginian (as evidenced in how he "warshed" something or had something in his "herr").  I smiled listening to the guide as Dad and I took our seat on the rail cart along with the rest of the tourists (made up mostly of families) as we prepared to journey into the center of the earth. Yes, this is a bit of an exaggeration, but I was getting ready to go INSIDE the mountain, I will write what I choose.

Needless to say, I gained more respect for the miners who mole miles into the earth daily to harvest this black sooty stuff that gives light and heat to millions daily. The respect comes more for the miners of the bygone era, where there were no laws to protect them from being underpaid (20 cents for a ton of coal is what they earned in the early 1900s. They were extremely lucky if they made two tons in a work day), injured, or whatever other dishonest concoctions the mining company could dream of. The light from the end of the tunnel began to fade (literally) as the cart clanked into the mountainside. My Dad began to strike up a conversation with cotton topped gentleman who was sitting next to him, both men fellow West Virginians whose fathers had worked the mines as well. As we journeyed into the mine, the tour guide pointed out that the mine had to be expanded so the rail cart could bring in tourists. The tunnel is no more than seven feet high. The mining tunnel was about four feet high (I stood up and compared, I am short, I know what I am talking about) which was clearly etched into the rocks . Our guide stopped the cart several times to point out tidbits of information and even showed us some of the lights used by miners in the early days. One light the miners hung on their hat resembled a teapot that stood no more than three inches high and had a hook on it so that it would latch on to the front of the helmet. Inside the teapot was a wick that burned (yes real safe) a little light. I was comforted by the fact that there was enough water dripping through the seams of the rock to put out a gaseous explosion, I think.

 Well thankfully the journey continued on throughout the mine without a hint of a possible explosion or implosion. We finally finally finished the mining tour where it initially started. We all piled off the metal cart squinting in bright white light of the sun trying to decide what to do next. After a brief discussion Dad and started touring the recreated coal miner family home (see picture above) and the foreman/supervisors home as well. The foreman's home was the largest in the coal camp  (generally a two story clapboard and HAD an indoor privy) and the family had the most prestige. Dad kept talking about how he used to  play with the foreman's children all the time and on and on about different childhood antics.

The highlight of the expedition came when we stepped onto the solid pine floors of the schoolhouse. The room was filled with knee high wood (yes it was real wood) desks lined up perfectly in fours. We started looking around at the pictures and other ancient gadgets that were THE technology of the time (anyone remember a record player…much less one that you had to wind up? I doubt.) Periodically I grinned a toothy grin  at the young family in the far left side of the room who were trying on the dunce cap and sitting on the stool. I made a mental note to do it myself when I had made my way over to that end. We had finally made our way to the back end of the room near the Dunce family when I noticed an old black and white photo of a town. Being the old photo junky, I leaned closer to examine it when I saw in fading black letters 'Killarney'. I spun around and said "Look Dad. Here is a picture of Killarney where you lived.". In typical father fashion, he had to argue..uh uhh…you sure (insert huffs and puffs) between all this with me saying "look here. See Kil-lar-uh–nee". "I know how to read." to "You are right! Wow, it must be an earlier photo. I don't remember some of the buildings."

Dad was suddenly curious about what year the photo was taken and turned to find the volunteer who was manning the schoolhouse. Dad started towards a older man dressed in a pair of gray blue work slacks with a just a bit darker gray blue polo shirt with a gray blue trucker capped perched on his head. "Excuse, me can you tell me what year that picture was taken?". The man gave me smiled the I am retired, I am doing this because I want to, not because I have to smile and began to speak. The two old birds started up a conversation and I sat down at one of the desks gingerly plucking through Florence Webb's old spelling book. My ear was latched onto the conversation and my eyeball on the book. "1912..I wonder what happened to you Florence. Did you accomplish all your dreams?" I mused. My selective hearing quickly tuned back to the conversation with great interest. The man in gray blue was a retired teacher and had started his first teaching job IN Killarney back in 1956. This man remembered my grandfather, but couldn't quite remember the Painter children. If grandpa had not transferred to another congregation in 1955, Dad would have been in this man's student. The pair talked a bit more and then it was time to be on the road again.


My dad proceeded to tell me about the whole conversation as we left as if I had not heard a word or EVEN discovered the picture. I acted like a big girl and kept my mouth shut and smiled. I did have to say this was an amazing journey, to see a part of family history and a way of life that has shaped me directly and indirectly.

(Finish up end paragraph)






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Passion City Church has started up again for the summer, which I am quite excited about. This weekend PCC met at the GACS in Norcross. GACS is a school that never ceases to amaze me. It is a private school with K through high school on its campus, it resembles more of a college campus with winding roads, paths, and neatly manicured lawns in front of big buildings. PCC has been meeting over all over greater Atlanta for the last year and a half and has been drawing people from all corners of the metro Atlanta area and then some. Tonight was no exception, with floor seating and the bleachers packed to capacity. It is amazing to see how one baby church plant with no home has moved to reached the masses in such a short time. Some may argue that it is the pastor (Louie) or the worship pastor (Chris Tomlin). However, once you step through the doors and take a step back and look at what is going on, you can tell the spirit of the Lord is moving in a deep way.


The sermon last night was an amazing reminder of when things seem so low and there is no way lift your gaze and if you can lift your eyes towards heaven. Stephen did this even when he knew he was going into his final minutes of his life. The crowd was frothing at the mouth and was dragging him to the open gates to stone him to death according to scripture. Stephen however lifted his gaze towards and heaven and saw God. Stephen knew that in his final hours that God would give him the peace to go through this horrendous act against a "just" man with the knowledge the God is the carrying him through this.  "But he being full of the Holy Spirit, gazed into heaven and saw the glory of God, and Jesus standing at the right hand of God. and said, "Look! I see the heavens open and the Son of Man is standing at the right hand of God." NIV Acts 7:55-56. As Louie said when you are confronted by your enemies..look up. Looking at your own inadequacies..look up.






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QofD: Endings



Do you think it’s true that “All good things must come to an end?”

Do I think all good things must come to an end? Yes and no (and no I am not grooming myself to be a potential politician with these I answered the question but not answered the question answers). The good and the bad are a part of life. Good things do happen to us whether we have found our true love, spent the day laughing with a dear friend, or accomplishing a dream that we have worked so hard for. Even though the actual good thing in question is temporal in it’s time and tangibility,  it is what we take from it that never ends. If someone helps you in a time of need, that is a good thing. So when you are back on your feet and you come across someone in a time of you help them as that person had so generously helped you? If yes, good things never end. If no, well you see what I am getting at 🙂

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Hillsong United-Me Viniste a rescatar – Desde mi interior-Me viniste a rescatar – Hillsong United

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