celticdragonfly: (Firefly - Kaylee - Yay!)
Pictures of the kids dressed up to go to Maundy Thursday and Good Friday services, and LOTS and lots of Easter pictures from today.
Pictures and commentary behind the cut )
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
We were out late last night at a party (post later, hopefully with pictures), and got home very late. I was, however, determined to get us to church this morning, we've missed a lot of weeks due to family illnesses. And of course I knew I'd want to go next week, too, for Reformation Sunday - after all, it's the Sunday after Oct 31st, right?

Got us up and heading out, running late but not intolerably so, made good time and got there just in time - the announcements were already going, but the procession in with the acolytes and such and opening hymn had not started. We came in and went around to our usual pew, getting there just as they had everyone stand for the opening hymn. I had a moment of thinking "my, the church is well decorated for just a Sunday in Pentecost" - and noticing "there's a lot of people up in the choir loft" - and then as I'm fumbling for the hymnal and starting to look at the bulletin that had been handed to me on the way in, the brass starts playing and OMG it's A Mighty Fortress! *TODAY* is Reformation Sunday.

THEN I notice the extremely high proportion of people wearing red all around me. I never manage to do that - I don't really *own* anything red, I look terrible in it - but I had planned out red outfits for all three kids. For next Sunday.

I'm sorry to not have been prepared for it, but I am glad that we were there. We only sing A Mighty Fortress once a year, after all.

There's a Lutheran church over in Dallas that is doing Reformation Sunday vespers in German this evening. I'm tempted to go to it. I haven't heard a service in German since I was last in Atlanta, way too long ago. My German isn't fluent enough to follow everything, but I'd like the refresher.
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
I got all excited and worked up about posting about the protest last night, and didn't get around to posting anything else from my day.

The best part was that Calvary Cafe and the Kids' Club program restarted last night. The kids were tremendously excited to be back. They were eagerly running off to kids' club. I got their paperwork filled out and went back to the big room that gets used for the cafe dinner, where [livejournal.com profile] fordprfct was keeping Alanna for me while I was getting the big kids settled. I got back to find Alanna in her godmama's arms - Mary and Bruce were there. It was lovely, since Alanna was in a nice awake, social, smiley mood, and got to spend a lot of the evening with her godparents. I felt so unencumbered, going up to get my dinner without having to be concerned about any kids!

And it was a great dinner. Chicken caesar totally fails to express what great things Phil can do with a chicken breast, romaine, cheese, and grapes. And garlic bread, and roast potato. OooOooOoh. I went ahead and got a plate for [livejournal.com profile] selenite just wrapped up in foil until he got there, and it's well I did, since they'd run out by the time he got there.

Mary went and picked up the kids at the end of Kids Club. They were so happy. Came running and shouting to see their Daddy. They were "helping" put all the chairs away, too - at least helping push the chair-hanging storage things across the room. And playing with their godparents, and Mary Ruth, and just generally running around having a good time. Maggie was totally wound up like a top. Jamie was trying to join into chase games and saying "I got you! I got you!"

I'd missed this, I'm glad to have it back in our lives.
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
I took the girls to church this morning - we overslept by an hour but got there just as things were starting anyway. (My fault, I accidentally set the alarm for PM, not AM.) It went well. Alanna was more awake than usual, and I had to go into the cry room to nurse during the sermon. I love the cry room, that I can be right there and see and hear. Mary and Bruce, the kids' godparents, were there, which thrills Maggie so much.

After service, Maggie was bouncing up and down, jumping, in the lobby area. Our new Pastor Kerstin, in full robes, even the big green communion chasuble, started jumping up and down with her. This was just adorably cute.

Mary and Bruce were taking communion to some older church members again, the same people Maggie went along to see a couple of weeks back, so they took Maggie along again. I think it's just a lovely opportunity, a chance for her to spend time with them and help with a really good ministry, and hopefully encourage her to want to help others as she grows up. She had lunch with them too.

Mary gave me a baptism book for Alanna today, with pictures and descriptions of her baptism. It's really sweet. That will go into her faith chest with the other special mementos of the day.
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
Yesterday was the church potluck and get-together to say farewell to our intern Tara, who's about to leave at the end of her year. It went pretty well. Certainly both the casserole and the bread vanished. [livejournal.com profile] selenite had to spend a lot of his time off dealing with Jamie, although he did sit nicely for a while.

Maggie pretty much was off on her own as soon as she got there. Her friend Caroline, as seen in the pics from Alanna's baptism, was there, and the two of them went off to sit and eat together - then later I saw them playing and dancing with Brianna - then also Mary Ruth, and her friend - and then another younger little girl - a whole happy group of them.

Our daughter, extroverted social success. We have no idea what bizarre genetic mutation enabled THAT.
celticdragonfly: (Default)
Okay, I think I found something I'm happy with. I realized that deep down, what I *wanted* to make was something that would fit under Pastor Phil's tongue-in-cheek description of the traditional Lutheran Hotdish. Hey, I *like* those. But cream-of-something soup, yeah, dairy.

So I found this Amish Six Layer Dinner Recipe that I think I may try. I may totally screw it up, given how bad I am at cooking, but we'll see. I have to go think about how much of each ingredient to get - how many green peppers does it take to get a cup when you dice it, and etc for each ingredient?

[livejournal.com profile] selenite had suggested I bake bread - that I actually enjoy doing, and since he'll be home tomorrow morning to deal with baby-stuff (kinda hard to suddenly go change a diaper while in the midst of kneading) I might do that too. We'll see.

Who knows, I don't even know how much of the family is going yet.
celticdragonfly: (Alanna 6-19-07)
[livejournal.com profile] rlseiver emailed me a bunch more pictures today. I uploaded some of my favorites. The new ones start here. There's some cute pics.
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
Yesterday was Alanna's baptism. It was wonderful that we had a whole bunch of people joining us there for it. Mary and Bruce are her godparents - they've been so wonderful for Maggie and Jamie, I know she's a lucky little girl.

My sister and my parents came in from out of town for it. [livejournal.com profile] fordprfct was there, and his mother Linda came.

Alanna was wearing a knitted set I made for her - all in white, christening gown with hearts, lace socks, and a lace cap with a purple ribbon. We got pictures, but I may want to do more later - we never did get a picture of her with the cap on. It was coming off as we went up front for the baptism, and I just had [livejournal.com profile] selenite keep it, since we were about to need to take it off anyway - and he'd been chasing Jamie after service, and by the time he got back to be in pictures I didn't get the chance to ask for it back.

One of the traditions in our church is that each child gets a faith chest, a lovely wooden box with her name on it. Hers is lovely. Right now it has her baptism candle, the cloth used to dry her head, the day's bulletin, and her outfit is going into it. My sister sang a hymn I'm fond of for the offertory, and I'll put the music for that in there, too.

According to the Yarn Harlot, "There is an old adage that claims that if an expert knitter places knitting needles in a babys hands, the child will be clever at knitting." I'd been thinking of asking Mom to do that - but by the time I was done with her whole ensemble outfit, I was feeling pretty good about my abilities! So Mom and I put needles in her hands together after the service. She grinned once she had them.

Pictures are here

Probably my favorite picture - because we got a great big smile from Alanna.

Afterwards we all went back to the house, talked, ate, played card games, and generally had a lovely time. Alanna got held by lots of people. Her Granddad in particular gets a lot of smiles out of her.
celticdragonfly: (Default)
Maggie has come up with a cute new way to introduce herself. "Hi, I'm Miss Maggie. I'm five years old. I'm almost six!" Her birthday was one month ago. But apparently she's decided this qualifes her as "almost six".

Alanna wore the blue sailor suit outfit to church this morning. [livejournal.com profile] bkseiver made it for Brendan when he was a baby, and each child has worn it in turn. It's cute.

[livejournal.com profile] selenite told me to go look in the church office today, so I did. There was the box for Alanna's baptism. (Each child is given a wooden box with their name on top, for special things - Maggie and Jamie's each have a candle, pictures from their baptism, things like that.) It's pretty. Lovely fancy fluted corners, distinctly different from Maggie's and Jamie's.
celticdragonfly: (Breastfeeding - international symbol)
So yesterday was a busy day. Woke to incredible pouring rain, but we wanted to go to church anyway. I wanted [livejournal.com profile] selenite to get to show off his new baby daughter on Father's Day. So we got everybody bathed and dressed and on the road, and only got somewhat wet getting there.

They had the pink carnation up on the altar for Alanna's birth. I had Karl take a pic of us with it. We enjoyed showing her off a bit. I felt really pleased to be able to sing again.

We spent the afternoon over at [livejournal.com profile] fordprfct's, and took a few more pics. I kept wanting another good shot of [livejournal.com profile] selenite with her but didn't get it. Maggie's pretty pleased with this one
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
I've been having some reminders recently of why I'm SO happy to have the church that I have.

The youth ministry is getting ready for their summer mission trip again. Our high schoolers do one every summer. I'm sure Maggie will be looking forward to it someday when she's older.

Now, lots of churches' idea of "mission trip" would involve knocking on doors and telling anyone that doesn't believe just as they do how wrong they are. Not our church. This year:
Where: Cairo, Illinois
Why: Cairo is a small impoverished community that is a victim of the deterioration of commerce and river industry. Approximately 33% of the population lives below the poverty line.
What: We will be working with a Kid’s Club, assisting with minor home repairs and partnering with a non-profit called Mission Build who works to create affordable housing for lower income families.
Now this I heavily approve of. Take care of people. Good.

What made it even better was the two pages in the most recent church newsletter. They're going to be reading to the kids, and trying to promote literacy and bookowning, and here's a list of books they'd like to get, new or gently used. A page of younger kid books, and a page of older ones - a lot of great classics, books I love. This is definitely a project I can get right behind. I'm a happy bookpusher with a good outlet.

We already had an extra copy of Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH, so that went off to the church. Yesterday I got by a Halfprice Books and picked up some more. A copy of The Secret Garden, a copy of A Wrinkle in Time, and a complete 8-volume set of the Anne of Green Gables series. We'll try to get those delivered to the church in the very near future.

Oh, the Narnia series was on the list, too. I didn't grab those, I figure with the recent movie that'll be a popular enough choice that someone else is quite likely to get it. But I'm pleased that while some church types might be arguing about censoring those books, ours will be reading them to kids and hooking them on a love a books with them!
celticdragonfly: (Maggie Xmas 2006)
I ought to post about an amazing development in Maggie's life.

We've known for some time that she was going to be going to Day Camp at church this week, M-F, 9 am - 3 pm each day. With all the uncertainty of things with the baby, we'd been wondering how we were going to manage to get her back and forth reliably and what would be happening. So when we'd signed her up, I'd talked to Janelle about maybe could we find somebody she could be in a carpool with?

Well, this is tricky, because there are few families as far from the church as we are. We're ELCA Lutherans. There is a tiny Lutheran congregation just west of here, at the "meeting in people's homes" stage. Not something I'd be comfortable suddenly bringing several rambunctious kids into, so we've never gone there. There's a nice small congregation partway between here and our current church, that we went to for a while - nice people, but very small, no nursery staff, not nearly as much of a kids' program as what we found at Calvary, so we changed to there. But it is a bit of a drive, and nobody else with kids that age is near us.

So I got a call last Friday from Janelle, the youth minister, about this. There's one staff member from this area - but it's one of the teens too young to drive anyway. Apparently each year for this Janelle ends up with several of the staff teens who don't drive staying with her, and various of her nieces and nephews come visit for it, and some of her godchildren come too. They just stay the whole week at her place, and she drives them back and forth from day camp in the church bus. And she was inviting Maggie to come along and stay, too.

What an amazingly wonderful offer! Wow.

Maggie won't know the nieces and nephews, but one of the godchildren she knows, and I bet a lot of those teen staff are also ones who've been helping with Kids' Club and she knows them. And she adores Janelle. She was very excited at the prospect.

So Karl bought her a pink duffel bag as her first personal luggage, and we packed up clothes and such for her for the week, and her sleeping bag and such. And yesterday after church Karl and Maggie and Jamie were at the summer kickoff kids' event they had, and Maggie went home with Janelle.

This has gone from "Maggie has Day Camp this week" to "Maggie's AWAY at camp this week." I expected this, but not so soon! My little girl. She'll turn 5 next Friday.

I had some serious talks with her about being on her best behavior, and remembering that Janelle and the teens are IN CHARGE and she has to be good, and if we get a call that she's not and we have to come get her that will be BAD. She seemed to be listening. I hope she's good. It sounds like her godparents may come visit her during the week, which she'd love, and there was talk about getting her to come home and visit if/when the baby comes.

Pentecost

May. 27th, 2007 10:15 am
celticdragonfly: (Maggie Xmas 2006)
I had hoped [livejournal.com profile] selenite could take the kids to church today, even though I can't go. I've missed most of Easter season and now I'm missing Pentecost. But he hurt his back yesterday, and didn't think he felt up to juggling both kids - and Jamie can get a bit rambunctious or need a lot of holding and carrying in church.

Fortunately, we got a call from the kids' godparents today, wanting to know if they could come pick up Maggie and take her to the 11 am service - because her godbrother Joshua is being confirmed today. I hadn't realized he was in this confirmation class. Well, I've missed a lot this spring. I thought this was wonderful. Karl got her bathed quickly, we dug out her black and red dress, and she eagerly went with them.

It was nice to see them and say hi. I've missed everyone. I hope I can go back soon.

Catching up

Feb. 8th, 2007 08:25 am
celticdragonfly: (Default)
Monday I had a productive day. Tuesday - I paid for it. Tired, exhausted tired, getting dizzy when I stood up wiped out. Wednesday I was pretty tired too.

Monday there was various laundry and dishes and cleaning up done. Then a run out with the kids and [livejournal.com profile] fordprfct for lunch, a bookstore run, and a yarn store expedition. [livejournal.com profile] fordprfct picked yarn for a baby blanket and I picked yarn for a baby dress. Then home for swatching.

Tuesday afternoon there was more yarn store expeditions - we finally figured out what size needle he needed, and went out to buy them. Also found buttons for the baby sweater I did in the golden yellow. Little blue ladybug buttons. Cute. Finished up watching movies at the house in Euless, then Karl drove me home and I collapsed.

Wednesday my plan was to stay collapsed until it was time to take the kids to Kids' Club at church. Jamie came home from school - in a different outfit, with a note from his teacher that apparently during crafts he dumped an entire bottle of glue on himself. She was apologetic, but said he'd thought it was loads of fun. That's a little boy for you. The kids went outside to play.

Now, we're in the process of getting Jamie those new glasses. The opthamologist made a small change to his prescription, but also pointed out the old frames were too tight for his face. Which explains why he keeps pulling them off, after finally having gotten good about not doing that. Sadly, one of the earpieces where it screws in to the front, has apparently stripped the screws, and keeps coming off when he does so.

Jamie came back from outside yesterday sans glasses. I sent Maggie out to hunt for them - she brought them back, but missing the earpiece. Later I went out and hunted through the yard, and could not find them. We were waiting for the optician to get new frames ordered to try on Jamie, since he'd outgrown the toddler line - I called to see if they were in - they were.

So, unhappily I got the kids loaded up and drove out to Southlake. They confirmed which size frames he needed, and promised to order his lenses immediately. And, amazingly, were able to fix the current pair enough for us to get by. Whew.

Later we went to church for kids' club. They do like that very much. Calvary Cafe was stuff I couldn't eat, so I sat in the library and messed about with my knitting project.

I was so very happy to get home and collapse. I was going to post last night, but we had a power dip and the computer shut down. I took this as a hint and went to bed.
celticdragonfly: (Celtic cross)
This morning I was scheduled to sing the Assistant Minister part for the 8 am service. I'd been scheduled for Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve for quite a long time - before I knew how rough this pregnancy was going to be on me. I had last sung back in October, and the Christmas Eve services got collapsed to 1 10 am service, and the 11 am person took the singing role.

Before I get further into the story of what happened today, let me give a little background information. The Asst. Minister has a singing part right at the beginning of the service, the Kyrie, where it's sing-and-response, then after that sings the first part of a hymn that everyone joins in for the rest. The words for the sing-and-response are always the same, and the hymn is one of two possibilities, "Glory to God" or "This is the Feast of Victory", depending on the Sunday. The music, however, changes. There are three different settings, different sets of tunes, that these are sung to. (This also affects the tunes for stuff later in the service - the offertory hymn, the Holy Holy Holy after the Great Thanksgiving, and the Agnus Dei just before communion - but I don't have to solo those.)

We'd been doing setting 3 recently, which is the hardest, and I'd never sung that as A.M. before. Setting 1 is very simple, and is the one that was up the first few times I did the A.M. role. My favorite is setting 2 - that's the one that feels like the "right" one to me, although to do the A.M. part I have to drop down an octave and sing it in the tenor range - that's what I was doing back in October, that got our music director coming up to me later and saying "you're a tenor!" Yeah, I've found I do much better singing most of the hymns an octave down.

At the Christmas Eve services, I'd noticed that we weren't singing setting 3 anymore - so I went up to Pastor Phil after service and asked him precisely what I'd be singing this Sunday. He told me setting one, and the "Glory to God" hymn. Okay, fine. So that was what I practiced yesterday. Setting one, no problem, sing it as written, and the Glory to God intro doesn't require anything musically difficult.

(By the way, one of the reasons I'm able to practice all this is that my mother, [livejournal.com profile] bkseiver, has been an organist at various churches, including some of the Lutheran ones I was brought up on. She has since kindly given me both the organist's version of the green Lutheran hymnal, and more precious, the organist's edition of the Liturgy book. A precious book to me indeed.)

So this morning I headed off early to church, not as early as I maybe should have, but early. I said hi to Pastor Phil and said I was going off to the choir room to wake up my voice. I got in there, said hi to Victor, and sat down at the piano to practice and warm up, started singing the scale of the key of F, which is what setting 1 starts in, and then started practicing it. The Kyrie in setting 1 is dead easy, it starts C-D-F and then you stay on F-F-F-F-F then D then F. And the rest of the lines are F-F-F-F-F-D-F. So far fine, and then I launch off the last Amen which ends on G into Glory to God, which starts on G. No problem.

Problem. Victor stops me and tells me, no, we're doing This is the Feast instead of Glory to God. Oh no. I'm thinking of T.i.t.F. in setting 2 at first, and thinking I'm going to have to drop that an octave - and Victor points out, no, it's T.i.t.F. in setting ONE. Which I've never sung before. I don't even remember us doing it in that setting - I think usually while we're in setting 1 we've been singing Glory to God. Victor points out to me that in setting 1, I don't sing that first line alone, the whole congregation sings it - but I think, does the congregation realize that? They're used to the A.M. singing the first line alone, so I bet I will be. So I spend a bit of time at the piano frantically punching out that first line, in which not only the melody but the rhythm is different from what I'm used to. Oh, and it's in the key of D, not F major. It's pushing at the top of my range, too. Then I walk quickly back to the robing closet, carrying the liturgy book and softly singing that first line over and over.

I get to the closet, say hi to Pastor Phil, mention I've warmed up, and I'm about to start robing when he says something about yep, setting 2 and This is the Feast. What? Setting TWO? We grab the bulletin and look, and sure enough, from the music in there for the Kyrie responses it's clearly setting two. Now, setting two is my favorite, but still, I've just warmed up for setting 1. Setting 2 I have to drop down an octave, and the Kyrie is in the key of C, although at least This is the Feast is still in D, albeit a different melody. Pastor Phil offers to have me just speak the lines instead of singing them, but I really don't want to do that, and confirm that I still have a few minutes and can scurry back to the choir room to reset myself. I ask Tara, our intern, to go up to Victor and make sure he's seen that we're on setting 2, and tell him I need the starter note one octave down, please - they'll play the first note or three softly just before we start. I scurry back, practice frantically, scurry back up front (and these days, scurrying leaves me out of breath! Which is why I asked Tara to go upstairs to the choir loft rather than doing it myself), and robe up.

At this point I'm probably lucky to know which way is UP. I'm also realizing uncomfortably that before putting on the heavy robes, I should probably have slipped off the very warm wool socks and just put my clogs back on over bare feet. (Sigh, yes, I'm reduced to wearing clogs to church. They're *nice* clogs... my other shoes are hurting too much right now.)

So we get to the start of the kyrie - I'm expecting a singleton note to start on, an A below C - and he played a sequence of three, I'm honestly not sure which. I was totally flubbing the first line, hunting for the right note. GAH! By the second line, I had it much better, and I think from the third on I was right on the correct notes. But still, weep! After the hymn, as we sat down to hear the readings, Pastor Phil whispered "good recovery!" Sigh.

I'd also run into the problem that because of all the music kerfluffle, I hadn't gotten up front to read through the prayers that the A.M. reads, which I generally do ahead of time so I make sure there's no weird phrasing to verbally trip me up. Now, I'm good at reading out loud, even totally cold - but I managed to get a good look at it before the readings, and I could see that in the part where I'm reading names of people we're praying for with illnesses, one of the names was right under where the three-hole punch had gone. I can interpolate a lot from context, but not a name. So I'd whispered to Pastor Phil that I couldn't read it, and he'd managed to get a look at it during the hymn after the sermon and tell me the correct name.

To make things worse - I've been needing to slip out to the bathroom in the middle of the service these days. Maybe I should have gone during the sermon, but I like listening to the sermon. So I slipped out during the Peace, and had the offertory as my time period. Unfortunately, I was wearing my maternity overalls under the robe - one of the few comfortable decent things I have I can wear right now - and you have to totally derobe to go to the bathroom. Which might have been okay - except the altar mike isn't working right now, so they had us wearing the little portable mikes, that go in your pocket and clip to the collar of the robe, and you just de-mute them when you get to your part. So afterwards I'm frantically throwing the robe back on, and the clip for the mike fell off, and I'm desperately getting all this together fast - and as a result, I was discreetly slipping back up the side aisle of the church and through the sacristy just as it was time for the A.M. to read the prayer after the offertory canticle. Pastor Phil simply read it. I felt bad about that, though.

I got through the rest of the service reasonably well. I did find that the procession out, singing the hymn (we got a nice highly-singable one, Go Tell it on the Mountain) and walking, was enough to put me out of breath again. As it was, the lector well outpaced me, although I think I was doing a reasonable dignified pace. A last few gathered breaths so I could do the final A.M. line at the back, and I was done.

I'd already decided this better be the last time I did this role until well post-baby, but man, this certainly clinched it. This was way more trouble than I'd expected!
celticdragonfly: (Default)
I did the assistant minister slot yesterday at the 8 am service - it is the one that involves singing a lead part. I believe it's the first time I've ever sung into a mike. I was VERY nervous. I think it went okay. Pastor Phil said afterwards I'd done a very good job, several people afterwards said I did a good job, and one lady said I have a beautiful voice. Our church has a LOT of musical talent, amazing people - our music director is really good. So I was worried about doing well enough.

Today VBS starts, with me leading the crafts section. We're having breakfast and will head out in a bit. I am going to get rather behind on LJ this week.
celticdragonfly: (Laura - 12-10-05)
At church this morning, in the space of a couple of hours I was complimented on my skills at reading aloud (Van, who schedules lectors, said LOTS of people told him how well I did last week, and he wants to schedule me for a whole month soon), my looks, my parenting (Maggie's so wonderful and is so well-behaved in church), and my fiber arts work.

Wheee. Overall pretty nice on the Laura's-ego-feeding! Nice petting.
celticdragonfly: (Default)
I was lector for the 8 am service at church yesterday. I'd gotten a call asking me to do that service (actually, the 1st and 8th but I knew I'd still be out of town for the 1st) back before Christmas. That's one of the things I'd put down on my form of things I was willing to volunteer for. (It's funny - I suspect most people would be fine with signing up for things like greeter, when you're standing and shaking hands and talking with the people that come in, but would be nervous about doing something like lector up in front of everybody, but I'm the opposite.)

Between being out of town and sick, I hadn't gotten to see the texts I was going to be reading until 7:30 Sunday morning. (Oh, [livejournal.com profile] bkseiver, it was *not* the same ones as the listing you had for your church) I figured I could do a competent job of reading, as long as I didn't go into coughing spasms or sneezing a lot. I'm mostly better, but the cold is still dragging out. I picked up cough suppressant that morning and took it. I was also concerned with doing a competent job of communion assistant, as the lector takes one side with the communal cup.

When I got there I was realizing oh yes, today's the church's 50th anniversary celebration. Oh yeek. We have a visiting bishop emeritus and everything. (I don't think I'd ever seen a Lutheran bishop before) I had a moment of twitchiness that the service would be packed, but it wasn't, then someone made a comment about how people would be going to the 11 am service afterwards to stay for the afternoon feast. Ah, right. Excellent.

Things went very well. I had no problem finding a robe that fit, and did the procession and such, went through the service from up front, got to time for the reading, stepped forward to the podium and up on the step, and as soon as I started speaking I could tell that yes, the microphone was placed right and picking me up fine. I kept my speed slow (I tend to talk too fast, especially when excited), and I thought I did a good job with the reading. The rest of the service went well. It's very strong and moving to be going through the service from up there. We got into the run-up to communion and it was interesting, when we started the Lord's prayer, I realized the bishop emeritus next to me wasn't praying in English, and a second later realized it was German. Fascinating. Communion went well, I didn't trip and I didn't drop the chalice on anyone, so that's fine.

I generally came to realize just how well I did. During the sharing of the peace, Pastor Phil told me I'd done an extremely good job of that, was I doing all month? No, just scheduled for the one day, but I'm willing to do more. The lector takes one of the exits to shake hands and wish people good morning, and a number of people stopped to tell me what a good job I'd done with the reading, good diction and speed and feeling and such. Then after I'd de-robed and was down by the nursery, someone else stopped to confirm that I'd been the one doing the reading, and said I'd done a fantabulous job, they didn't know what it was but I had it!

It all made me feel really good. Not too surprising - I used to do reading in church in my early teens, did oratory and dramatic reading in competition back in middle school and high school, and I had DJ training, so I have appropriate training, and I do think I read out loud fairly well. But it still made me feel good. I hope I get asked to do more.

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