Friday, April 28, 2006

a lovely day

so, yes, the wide tent has been largely neglected lately. sigh. life is so rich and full, and finding a balance that includes writing here on any sort of regular basis is proving elusive. ah well, it's not such a bad dilemma to have.

today was a lovely day in philadelphia. i love this city, all the time, but especially in springtime. the temperatures have been mild, the sunlight on the river just sparkles, and the trees and bushes are a riot of pink and white blossoms. and being the mom of a highly spirited, temperamentally challenging pre-schooler is soooo much easier when regular physical activity is as easy as stepping outdoors any time of the ever-lengthening day. these days i'm realizing that much of the challenge that is micah is mostly about me, about my ability to cope. winter is just so hard for me. spring is feeling like a honeymoon. a honeymoon with the honeyman, as he has recently dubbed himself: "i'm the honeyman!"

so this morning micah and i met some friends at smith memorial playhouse, an indoor playhouse located in one of the mansions of fairmount park, along with a brand-spankin' new playground. all totally free and a ten minute drive from my house, along the blossoming and sparkling kelly drive, which follows the schuylkill river through northwest philadelphia. this stretch of the river is one of my favorite places in philadelphia, especially in the springtime, and i've run many many miles along the jogging path there.

we had a lovely time at the playhouse, and then headed to trixie's school which got out at one o'clock for the teachers' professional development. i'll have to tell more about this remarkable school another time; it's also one of my favorite places in philadelphia. i had a posse of girls -- trixie, the two neighbor girls i take care of before and after school, and another friend's daughter, and we (along with a very tired and napless micah) headed to the philadelphia museum of art to gaze upon princess grace's wedding gown. she was a philadelphia girl, and lived less than a mile from me (in a very tony neighborhood which starts, in classic philadelphia fashion, just a block from my quite-gritty-quite-urban-feeling-not-quite-but-almost-a-ghetto neighborhood). indeed, kelly drive is named after her brother, who was a city council member. it was fun to drive home from the museum along kelly drive, and just blocks from our house point out to the girls the church where grace worshiped (and where philadelphians hoped against hope that the wedding would take place), and to the block where her house was. i haven't figured out exactly which house was hers, but i jog past there all the time too.

when julie got home i left the kids with her and headed to a meeting at the school about next year's administrative structure and how to deal creatively with a serious budget crunch (i sit on the board there and will be board president next year). i came home to an empty house (bliss!) as julie had the kids at the ymca (micah's playing tee-ball!) and pulled together a lovely meal of lentil stew, steamed broccoli and caesar salad, completely out of thin air, as i haven't shopped in over a week. we ate on the patio out back (well, "out back" is precisely the size of a very small patio; we live in a rowhouse and have a patio of a back yard and a postage stamp of a fr0nt yard) and then spent some time as a family cleaning up. (my new motto is "i don't care if you made the mess -- i'm always cleaning other people's messes. we're a family, and if the house needs to be cleaned, we just all have to pitch in and clean it!") and while i've been typing this, micah fell asleep all on his own (that *never* happens, i always have to sit with him). so the house is cleanish (okay, it's not clean at all, but it's not the total pig sty it had become by the end of a week of total neglect on my part), my kids are asleep, and it's only nine o'clock.

life is good at the wide tent. hope it's as good wherever you find yourself.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

adoption dot com boycott

i've personally never been there, and it sounds like a good thing.

for any of you who are adoptive parents, or considering adoption, please check out this site about a boycott of adoption dot com because of discrimination against gay, lesbian and single parents.

Friday, April 14, 2006



April 7, 2006, Philadelphia

On Tuesday, April 4, 2006, the Official Board of Old First Reformed Church, United Church of Christ, unanimously passed a resolution (see full text, attached) in opposition to HB2381, the so-called “Marriage Protection Amendment” currently under consideration by the Pennsylvania House of Representatives. The Official Board’s resolution opposes the amendment’s discriminatory definition of marriage as the union of one man and one woman, its potential to repeal significant rights and protections which support safe and stable families for gay men, lesbians, and their children, its violation of the principles of religious freedom established just blocks from Old First, and its incompatibility with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the principles of God’s love and justice.

On Sunday, April 2, 2006, Marta [lastnamedeleted], a member of Old First, shared a moment of concern about how HB2381, and similar legislation across the county, affects her and her family. Marta's partner, Julie [lastnamedeleted], is the director of music at Old First, and they have two children. “The most specific way the amendment would affect us is that we could lose our domestic partnership benefits, which we receive from the publicly-funded Philadelphia school district, where Julie is a teacher,” says Marta, who is a stay-at-home mom and serves as an Elder and as Church School superintendent at Old First. “But even more scary to us is the way this sort of legislation feels like an assault. Day after day we hear that our committed, covenantal relationship is a threat to the institution of marriage, that our loving little family is a threat to the very fabric of society! It seems like every day, there’s another bill or ballot measure, each one more severe and punitive than the last, until we have to ask ourselves, when is it going to stop? How much longer will we and our children be safe in this Commonwealth, in this country?” Following worship on April 2, many members of Old First participated in a letter-writing campaign in opposition to HB2381.

Founded in 1727, Old First Reformed Church is located at the corners of Fourth and Race Streets in historic Old City, Philadelphia. Old First strives to be a wellspring of faith for a diverse people in the heart of the city. Old First is proud to participate in the United Church of Christ’s “God is still speaking” campaign. We promise to all that “no matter who you are or where you are on life’s journey, you are welcome here.”


APRIL 4, 2006

WHEREAS Old First Reformed Church is an Open and Affirming congregation of the United Church of Christ, where we welcome into full membership persons of every race, language, age, gender, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, and economic level;

AND WHEREAS Old First Reformed Church holds that discrimination is incompatible with the gospel of Jesus Christ, and we commit ourselves to work diligently to end all oppression and discrimination which afflict God's people in our society;

AND WHEREAS Old First Reformed Church affirms all relationships founded on the principles of God's love and justice;

AND WHEREAS the Official Board of Old First Reformed Church finds that HB2381, the so-called “Marriage Protection Amendment,” which defines marriage as the union of one man and one woman, would establish in the Pennsylvania constitution a discriminatory definition of marriage;
AND WHEREAS the Official Board of Old First Reformed Church finds that HB2381 would repeal significant rights and protections which support safe and stable families for gay men, lesbians, and their children;

AND WHEREAS the Official Board of Old First Reformed Church finds that in these ways, the so-called “Marriage Protection Amendment” is incompatible with the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the principles of God’s love and justice;

AND WHEREAS the Official Board of Old First Reformed Church finds that the so-called “Marriage Protection Amendment” violates the principles of religious freedom which were established just blocks from our church;

THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED: The Official Board of Old First Reformed Church, United Church of Christ, opposes the “Marriage Protection Amendment,” currently under consideration in the Pennsylvania House of Representatives as HB2381, and we endorse any effort by our members to defeat this amendment.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

for anon

anon, i'm sorry you feel like you need to hide your identity here. please know that as long as you remain civil, as you have, i will not remove your comments, and at any rate, no one is going to be allowed to attack you for your views here!

your interpretation of scripture is certainly one many christians agree with. personally, i think it is a sad and stunted reading of god's word, one that makes god very small, indeed, and makes idolators of its adherents.

(and i'm not interested in proof-texting, but just for the record, jesus had not one word to say about homosexuality.)

i'll keep you in my prayers, anon.