Saturday, August 13, 2011

May 29, 2011

Rev. Matt Kennedy
North Park Covenant Church
Chicago IL

Scriptures: Acts 17:22-31, 1 Peter 3:13-22, John 14:15-21

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

My Favorite Year

Lucie turned one yesterday! We've done much celebrating, and she has enjoyed being the center of attention. It's been a crazy busy and full year with many ups and downs, and it certainly has been my favorite year ever. We've been so blessed with this wonderful baby (now more like a little kid)! Please enjoy this video chronicling a Year in the Life of Lucinda!

Lucinda is One from Matt Kennedy on Vimeo.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Stay tuned

OK, so I almost have a video for Lucie's birthday. It will be up tomorrow!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Your 2010 Seattle Mariners

I've looked everywhere but I cannot find my Mariners baseball cap. Fortunately, my little "Sweet Lu" is representing for me this opening day.

Just a few hours from the first game of the season. Seattle made some high profile moves much earlier in the off-season, and it was certainly looking like the Mariner's front office was "in it to win it". Cliff Lee, Chone Figgins, and Milton Bradley were the major additions to the team. But as pre-season continued skeptics began asking again whether the offense would be good enough and the starting rotation go deep enough to make a run for a title in what could be a competitive division. Doubt and concern grew as Cliff Lee suffered an abdominal strain in spring training that has the potential to keep him out of the rotation till mid-May. Mariners fans were waiting to see if GM Jack Zdierenek had any surprise moves left before the season began in order to fill the offensive holes at first base, DH, and elsewhere in the infield; or perhaps to shore up the back end of the rotation with a better arm. Instead, we entered spring training with a mix of solid players and some big question marks.

Here is where I put my hope. The best 1-2 pitching punch in baseball: Felix Hernandez and Cliff Lee. Reports are that Lee is recovering fairly quickly from his strain, and that though he starts the season on the DL, he could be back as early as the end of April. Additionally, we have Erik Beddard recovering from elbow surgery and also progressing very quickly. If he comes back in form, we'll 3 starters each capable of staff aces. This becomes especially valuable in the postseason where the breaks in between divisional and league series sets us up to sweep our rivals, saving our back end of the rotation for clean up duty. And though there's a lot of skepticism about our offense, I like what this lineup has going for it. Ichiro and Chone Figgins are an incredible pair to lead off with. They get on base a lot and move around the bases quickly. We might not have much in the way of power hitters, but when you get fast guys on base often-- runs will score. I'm also of the mind that Milton Bradley has a lot of potential to bounce back from what was really not-all-that-bad of a season with the Cubs last year. The guy can still hit. If he stays healthy, sane, and avoids ejection-- I think he can still hit for avg and draw walks. Once again, the bullpen looks to be an underrated asset. And though it'll be hard to match the defensive numbers put up by last year's squad, once again this team is built around incredible defense that will help keep us in games even when our bats aren't so hot.

The big question marks and worry spots are still offensive in nature. A Ken Griffey Jr./Mike Sweeney Platoon at DH is a frightening thing. Both are fragile, older guys who each have a good chance of losing playing time to injury, and each will have to buck the trend of steep hitting decline in their age brackets. Similarly, with Casey Kotchman penciled in as the everyday 1st basemen, he hasn't yet shown himself to hit big league pitching with consistency. He strikes out too much, and doesn't seem to have the power bat you'd like from a first baseman. And finally, Ian Snell continues to struggle to find the strike zone. He remains something of a head case. Many say the potential is there to be a fine starter, but I'm just not all that impressed.

I think this team is built for a winning season, but it's hard to see them easily finishing ahead of Texas, the Angels, and even Oakland looks competitive. A few things will need to go right: Lee gets healthy quick, Griffey/Sweeney bucks the trend and hits productively inspite of their geriatric status, Kotchman breaks out with some power, Beddard comes back with that good placement and killer curveball, and Milton Bradley proves that last year was a fluke and he is still a solid hitter. If three or four of these things happen, we've got a good chance. If two or three happen, we've got an outside chance. And the possibility exists that all scenarios fail to play out and we lose 90 games. But its opening day and everybody starts out tied for first! This is an exciting team because there is so much that could go right and so much that could go wrong. 2008 was a huge disappointment, 2009 was a pleasant surprise, 2010 just has no predicting...

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

A Quote for Ash Wednesday

"There is no deeper pathos in the spiritual life of man [sic] than the cruelty of righteous people. If any one idea dominates the teachings of Jesus, it is his opposition to the self-righteousness of the righteous. The parable spoken unto 'certain which trusted in themselves that they are righteous, and despised others' made the most morally disciplined group of the day, his Pharisees, the object of his criticism. In fact, Jesus seems to have been in perpetual conflict with the good people of his day and ironically justified his consorting with the bad people by the remark that not those who are whole, but those who are sick, are in need of a physician...

The criticism which Jesus leveled at good people had both a religious and moral connotation. They were proud in the sight of God and they were merciless and unforgiving to their fellow-men. Their pride is the basis of their lack of mercy. The unmerciful servant, in Jesus' parable is unforgiving to his fellow-servant in spite of the mercy which he had received from his master.

Forgiving love is a possibility only for those who know that they are not good, who feel themselves in need of a divine mercy, who live in a dimension deeper and higher than that of moral idealism, feel themselves as well as their fellow men convicted of sin by a holy God and know that the difference between the good man and the bad man are insignificant in his sight. St. Paul expresses the logic of this religious feeling in the words:

"With me it is a very small thing that I should be judged of your or of man's judgment: yea, I judge not mine own self. For I know nothing by myself; yet am I not thereby justified: but he that judgeth me is the Lord."

...For this reason the the religious ideal of forgiveness is more profound and more difficult than the rational virtue of tolerance," - Reinhold Niebuhr

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Poor blog.

We've seriously neglected this blog! I don't have anything in particular to say, but in order to fulfill my duty to the blogosphere, here are a couple of CUTIE pictures of Lu that her awesome Auntie Adrienne took last weekend!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

5 months!

Happy 5 month Birthday (yesterday)!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Dealing with it

"Midway in our life's journey, I went astray from the straight road and woke to find myself alone in a dark wood."
-Dante, The Inferno

As I've approached this, the second anniversary of Evie's birth, I've not been able to articulate how I feel now about it. The second year of this grief journey has certainly been full of pain revisited but much healing as well. Yet I couldn't shake the feeling for the last few days that I was slowly approaching a dark place-- that daylight was slowly setting with the son as I approached shadowy woods. I would say that it is because this time of the year a different kind of pain is retouched. The general "ache" of Evie's absence is always with me, but at this time I feel the pit in my stomach at the memory of our trauma.

I enjoy remembering the happiness of Evie's birth. It was one of the few times in my life where I literally burst into tears of joy. That's a memory that cannot be taken from me. What does afflict me is the prospect of reliving the 21 days that followed-- the fear, the disorientation, and the trauma. We are glad to have so many people carry the memory and grief of Evie's life with us, and to celebrate with us the value of her life. But the trauma of those 21 days at Children's Memorial is something only Nicole and I understand.

For now, the task I have is embracing the memory of joy and the anticipation of our reunion at the end of time. These things ought to endure, while the troubles we suffered will pass away... and I will come out of these woods, and the pit in my stomach will pester me no longer.

We are a Family of Four

It's hard to believe Evangeline was born 2 years ago. In a way it seems like it couldn't have been that long ago, but it's also hard to remember life before her so in that was it seems like a very long 2 years. I've been stressing a little leading up to this day because I've wondered, how do you mark an occasion like this? November 17th, 2007 was a day of great joy, and I wish that I could just celebrate that joy, but instead all I can feel is what's missing.

I think I'll take the opportunity of her birthday to work with Matt to put all of her pictures into a album. Strangely, even though I have each and every picture of her printed and an album chosen, I have never completed that project. We will have the evening together as a family--please pray for us as we spend time remembering Evie on her special day.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Putting it all out there

I'm overweight. I have been as long as I can remember, but I've never weighed more than I do right now besides when I was pregnant. I think the fact that I've always been overweight made me not notice when I would gain more--sure, I felt fat in high school, but I would be thrilled to weigh now what I weighed then. After all, losing 40 pounds is a heck of a lot less daunting than losing 80. The fact is, I let it get away from me even though I think I've always thought that I could and would change. So why haven't I?

While I was pregnant and couldn't try to lose weight, I came up with a goal for myself. I turned 28 this summer, so the big three-oh is looming just around the corner and I want to be at my ideal weight by the time I reach that milestone. It's over a year and a half away, so it seems doable, but I have a LONG way to go. I need to lose 80 pounds to reach my ideal weight range, which sounds impossible! But I plan to take it 5 pounds at a time. A friend of mine who had a lot of success in weight loss recommended rewarding both small and large goals and that's what I plan to do!

I think putting this all in writing for the world (and by that I mean my 4 faithful blog readers) to see is my first step towards success. I think the reason I've generally failed to stay motivated is that I treat weight like money and politics--not pleasant or polite to talk about. But knowing that other people know that I'm trying will force me to get results so that I'll have something positive to report!

I've subscribed to Weight Watchers Online and it's my goal to log my food each day and stay within my daily points. Exercise is kind of tricky because now that I'm working and have Lucie, I don't have time for trips to the gym. But, I can walk with Lucie on days that it is nice enough to do so and I can do my workout DVDs in the comfort of my own home!

So here I go. Wish me luck!