vendredi, décembre 31, 2004

It’s New Years Eve and I will be bringing in the New Year at work. Tonight, like the last couple of nights, it is quiet at the refinery tonight. I hope to enter the New Year sitting at my desk and not outside fighting some problem.

Lisa and the children are doing well. Three of the four are at home. Christian is at work, but he should be finishing up soon. I want him home and off the roads before midnight.

I have picked up a new book. It’s a book that I have wanted to purchase and read for a number of years but have not gotten around to it. It is The Forgotten People: Cane River’s Creoles of Color by Dr. Gary B. Mills . I am not disappointed. Mills was a fine historian and this is a great and valuable work. My friend Ron Metoyer, a descendent of the gens de couleur libre (free people of colour) of Cane River, graciously loaned me the book. It is wonderful and now I MUST go and buy my own copy.

This is the second book I’ve read on Louisiana’s gen de couleur libre. The first book I read on this subject is Creoles of Color in the Bayou Country by Dr. Carl Brasseaux, Keith Fontenot and Claude Oubre. It is dealing with the free people of colour in the Acadian Parishes of Louisiana and not with the Cane River people who are to the NW of this area.

This too is a book I highly recommend. I own and have read a good deal of Dr. Brasseaux’s books on the Acadian/Cajuns. I like everything he’s done.

Coram Deo,

mercredi, décembre 29, 2004

Tonight I'm at work. I have been off since I worked of Christmas Eve. Monday Mk and his son and me and my little boys went to Longville to visit my folks. Dad and Terry were home and we spent a good afternoon with them.

Mk's son got a new BB gun for Christmas and he wanted to shoot it. He got to do that. The three boys played nicely together. While they were playing I got my
SKS out and we shot a number of rounds with it.

After shooting the SKS, Terry got his
.22 cal. pistol (Ruger) out and we shot clip after clip from it. I did most of the shooting. Mk is not comfortable shooting, but we're working on him in that regard. My dad also gave me his newest .38 cal. revolver to try out, and I shoot a number of rounds from it as well.

(I found it interesting to hear that MK's family, who are very conservative upstate New Yorkers, are pro-gun control. I guess even many Northern conservatives differ with Southerners and Westerners on that issue.)

We had a good time in Longville. As soon as MK and I have the same days off again we are planning to take the boys up there for another camping trip.

Tuesday morning I went to visit my Pawpaw, but he was not home. I did visit with Corbett (my step uncle) for about and hour. I hated to leave without talking to Pawpaw but I had promised my little boys and Mk's son that I would take them to the park.

I spent the afternoon at the park with the three boys. They had a great time. I pushed them around on the merry-go-round for a good while and then played other games with them. After a bit they started playing around in ways that did not require my assistance, so I sat down with a book and read for a while. We spent about three hours at the park. It was a nice outing.

Today I was able to go by and visit with Pawpaw and Mrs. Esther (my step-grandmother). I love visiting with them so much. It's always fun.

That's the rundown of my days off. Now I have other things to do.

Dominus Vobiscum,

dimanche, décembre 26, 2004

We’ve made it through a cold, but very nice, Christmas weekend. We spent most of the 25th here at home. We had Lisa’s family gathering a week ago Christmas eve, and my family got together the next day, so we weren’t obligated to visit anyone on Christmas day.

It was nice to just spend the day at home with Lisa and the children. I did get out once. Lisa’s sister Rhonda was without heat. Her heater wasn’t working so I went there, climbed in the attic and lit the pilot light for her. All was working nicely when I left, but she and her family had spent the coldest night of the year, so far, with no central heat. I told her she should have called sooner, on Christmas Eve.

This morning we went to Trinity Luthern Church to worship. It was a nice service. Tomorrow morning, Lisa and I are supposed to meet with the pastor. I’ve been looking forward to this meeting. I have a number of questions that I would like to ask him about the differences between Reformed and Lutheran views on certain matters. This will be our second time to meet with the pastor; the first time was mostly a "get to know you" session.

The pastor at Trinity is Rev. Duke. He is in his 60's and is a very personable gentleman. Lisa seems to like him a lot.

I told my friend, Bill Smith (pastor of Covenant PCA in Sulphur), that we have been attending the LCMS church and that I would like to visit an Episcopal Church as well. Bill said he knew the Vicar of the local Episcopal church and thought he was theologically conservative. I would like to visit and worship with them. I have worshipped at many Christian Churches but not an Episcopal church. We may visit there soon.

I am not sure what we are going to do as to a church.. I don’t think we are going to return to Bethel (our home church).I have a number of friends at the PCA Church here in Sulphur, but it looks like Bill Smith will soon be leaving and moving to Louisville, Kentucky, to pastor another PCA church up there. I like Bill and hate to see him go, but it would put him very close to Southern Baptist Seminary. He will be able to return to school and get his doctorate. This will be good, because he has great gifts that further education will only help.

I know our friends at Bethel would like us to go back there, and now that we have moved to Sulphur our friends at Covenant would like us to start going there. I’m in no hurry to make any decision about that. I think the move to Sulphur gives us a chance to visit other denominations, which I have wanted to do for years. As long as we lived so close to Bethel, I did not think it would be right to visit around, but now that we have moved, and there are other traditional Protestant Churches between us and the Reformed Churches of Bethel and Covenant, I think this is a good opportunity to check out these churches.

After Church today Lisa went to meet a friend and the little boys and I went to the park to fly an aeroplane they got for Christmas. It worked great, until I crashed it several times. I will have to get them another plane.

Once the plane ceased to function, they went and played on the swings and things at the other end of the park. We had a good time.

I am finally 300 pages into Calvin. I am reading slowly, but I continue on. Calvin is worth taking one’s time to read. I am enjoying him very much. I’ve also been reading some small things on the Lutheran Church and Lutheran views.

Coram Deo,

vendredi, décembre 24, 2004

Joyeux Noël,

Yesterday and today are holidays for most folks at the refinery, so we shift workers are the only ones working. We had a nice quiet day yesterday, with no extra people around, so we cooked up a big pot of turkey and sausage gumbo.

Today we’re having smoked “drunken” turkey for dinner. We also have lots of snacks. M. Trahan (pronounced trah-hahn [you only start to pronounce the ‘n’ then stop]) cooked yesterdays gumbo and C. Cudd smoked today’s turkey (with a can of beer in it) at home, and brought it out here.

Things are going fine around the house. Lisa and the kids are doing well. Morgan and Christian have been working in the evenings, and so I’ve hardly seen them since I’ve been on days.

It’s cold for South Louisiana. We have actually seen a few snowflakes this morning. The high for today is 36 deg. But our normal high is 62 degrees and our normal low is 42. So it is way cold for Cajun Country.

When I leave the refinery, tonight I want have to comeback until Wednesday night. So I will spend Christmas day with Lisa and the children. We have no plans. We are just planning to spend the day at home. The little boys can play with their new toys and we can watch a DVD or two.

We have plenty of fire wood, that I picked up from my mom and dad’s place in Longville. So I also plan to keep a nice fire in the fire place going. I love to sit in front of the fire with good book and a glass of wine, brandy, Scotch or bourbon, depending on my mood/taste at the time.

Lisa and the kid’s have decided that they want a roast tomorrow instead of the more traditional Christmas dinner. She’s seasoned the roast and I will stuff it tonight when I get home.

Let me get back to my work duties.

Dominus Vobiscum,

mercredi, décembre 15, 2004

I am so blessed by God. I am blessed beyond measure.

Yesterday Lisa, Morgan, Christian and I went to eat at Olive Garden. It was so nice to sit there with my wife and our older two children and visit. I like to spend time with my family. There are few things in life better than that.

Today I worked around the house. I had to put about half my books back on the shelf and I but up a couple of shelves in Morgan’s room for her books. Then I went and found my niece Shannon and her husband. Their truck had broken down and they needed a tow home. After we got to their trailer, I visited with them for a while. Brian, Shannon’s husband, recently returned from Iraq and has left the army and become a civilian. Brian starts a new job in the morning.
I don’t know if Shannon has been to church since her Dad (my brother Gerry) died last year. I spoke with her about that and encouraged her to go to worship services.

Tonight, Lisa ordered pizza and I went to get it. After eating, I let a fire in the fireplace and we sat in front of the fire wile Morgan read more of C.S. Lewis’ The Magician’s Nephew from the Chronicles of Narnia series. Then we did home work and our eight year old started reading a new biography of Christopher Colombus to me.

After Lisa and the little boys went to bed I sat by the fireplace with Calvin’s Institutes and a jigger of bourbon whiskey. I read Calvin and sipped on the bourbon in a cosy chair in front of a fire. Nice!!!!

Deo gratias,

mardi, décembre 14, 2004

Home life continues in a quiet normal pace. Morgan and Christian are working a good bit, which is good for their checking accounts and mine.

I recently purchased Luther the movie, after viewing the one Izzy loaned me. I’ve been waiting for this movie to come out on DVD for more than a year and I was not disappointed when I finally got to see it (see a review). This should be obvious, because I went to Walmart and bought it for myself.

I was supposed to work last night and tonight, but I have vacation time left and took these two nights off. TK, is working days, and he came over after his shift yesterday. I told him that I had some Killians in the refrigerator with his name on it, and that was enough to entice him to pass by after work.

We sat in the living room and talked for about an hour and a half , and drank a few Irish Reds while chatting. We had a good visit and decided that we needed to get our group together and all watch Luther at Gary and Liz’s house, because they have a big screen TV. Gary (by phone) also agreed with this plan. He was persuaded when we offered to bring the liquid refreshments.

After TK headed out, Mike called and asked if it was a good night for us to get together and pray. Mike arrived about 9:30 with a bottle of red wine (a Cabernet Sauvignon 2001 from Liberty School). It was a good, somewhat spicy wine. We drank a couple of glasses of wine, and snacked on Pepper Jack cheese and Triscuits. Then we went to pray. It was beautiful night. The sky was clear and the air was cold. We walked around the neighbourhood and prayed for about and hour.

I have work to do around the house.

Coram Deo,

dimanche, décembre 05, 2004

Morgan and Christian are working a lot these days. Christian seems to be doing well with his job and so is Morgan at the bookstore. Both of them working does mean that Lisa and I no longer have a built in babysitter. We can no longer say "I need you to watch your brothers" if something comes up. Oh well.

I’m still on days and have worked all this weekend. Today and yesterday were good, quiet days at work. Tomorrow should be busy because its Monday. Everybody will be looking to get to work and they need a permit issued by me to work in the unit, so I will spend all morning handing out work permits, coordinating work, etc... Though tomorrow will be a busy day, its also our last day. We work off tomorrow afternoon and all of the shift, except for me, will not be back to work until Friday evening. I have to come in on days Friday for Rescue Team training.

Yesterday after work, Lisa the little boys and I went to Woody’s house. He had invited a number of friends over. There was nothing for the children to do, so the little boys and I walked down to the small carnival that the City of Sulphur had going called "Christmas Under the Oaks." The boys got to ride a number of rides, including a mechanical bull (Lisa had joined us by the time they rode the bull).

In the past few days Ive read (reread) a number of the short works of the Church Fathers, including Clement’s epistle to the Corinthians. I love Clement’s epistle. I’ve read it a number of times, and it is just a great work. I’m still reading John Calvin’s Institutes. I can't say enough good stuff about what I have read so far in Calvin.

Morgan is two thirds of the way through the CS Lewis’s The Magician’s Nephew. She’s reading this aloud for the family on evening when we are all home.

Coram Deo,

lundi, novembre 29, 2004

Yesterday was a beautiful South Louisiana fall day. Morgan and Christian went to Bethel Presbyterian Church and Lisa, the little boys and I went to Trinity Lutheran Church. Lisa and I meet with the Pastor (Rev. Duke) during the Sunday school hour.

We had a good visit. We learned some things about him, his family and his time in the ministry. He also gave Lisa and me a couple of copies of Luther’s Small Catechism and a small work book titled “I Have Good News For You” by Rev. Donald Ginkel.

The Pastor wanted us to read the section on the Sacraments (especially on the Lutheran view of the Eucharist). I have some knowledge of Lutheran teaching on this subject and I’m interested in reading what these to sources have to say on the matter.

Yesterday evening Christian was at work (Outback Steakhouse) and Morgan, Lisa, the little boys and I were all home. The boys have been wanting to light a fire in the fireplace, and last night I lit a fire in my first ever fireplace. All the family gathered around. Lisa sat crocheting, the little boys drew or watched the fire. Morgan read to us from The Magician’s Nephew, which is the first book in C.S. Lewis’ wonderful series the Chronicles of Narnia.

Morgan read the first four chapters aloud. I had not heard them since I read the series to Morgan and Christian when they were no older than the little boys are now. After the third chapter, Lisa announced that it was time for the little boys to take their baths. They asked if Morgan could read more if they took quick baths. Lisa consented and the boys quickly bathed, including washing their hair, and Morgan read one more chapter.

C.S. Lewis is a great writer, and this series is one of the greatest fantasy epics ever written. I have read a good bit of his stuff and all of it has been quite good. My favourite Lewis book is his small novel titled The Great Divorce.

After our reading and prayers, the boys went to bed, as did Lisa. Christian returned home from work about 9:30, and MK came over not long after that. Mike had a bottle of Jacob’s Creek Shiraz with him. I poured us each a glass and we sat and talked while drinking wine and eating cheese and Chex Cereal.

The big topic for us last night was about the similarities and differences between Reformed and Lutheran theologies. We did go for a walk after finishing the wine, but we did not get to pray, because our topic of discussion ran into overtime.

Soli Deo Gloria,

dimanche, novembre 28, 2004

I spent most of today at home with the children. Lisa worked until about noon and then went to see a friend who is going through a divorce. She got with the friend again this evening and they went to supper together. The lady is a good friend. Divorce is a terrible thing, so it is good that Lisa can be there for her friend.

I got two new DVDs today. The first one I purchased at Walmart when the little boy’s and I went grocery shopping this afternoon. The movie is Frank Capra’s classic It’s a Wonderful Life. The other DVD I received today was ordered for me by my friend Butch Ellis. He was ordering Warriors of Honor and I asked him to order me a copy also. He called this morning and told me that they had arrived, so I went and picked up my copy and visited with he and Judy for a little while.

I watched both these DVDs today and love both. I have seen It’s a Wonderful Life many times. It is one of those timeless stories that you can watch over and over again.

Warriors of Honor is a very good documentary of Confederate Generals Robert E. Lee and Thomas J. "Stonewall" Jackson. I can not recommend this documentary to highly. It is a must have. It is a breath of fresh air in the fact that it gives a far more Southern slant to the War Between the States and not the usual Northen version that we Southrons have been force fed in textbooks for almost 150 years.

Lee and Jackson were both great military leaders and more importantly they were great men of God. They were both devout Christian men. The Scotch/Irish Jackson was Presbyterian and Lee, who was of English descent, was an Episcopalian. Of course, in that day, both these Southern Denominations were solidly Bible believing and theologically orthodox.

Robert E. Lee is my greatest American hero. I love history, especially early American history, and I have found very few Americans who come close to Lee in being worth of admiration and deserving of imitation as does Robert E. Lee.

We will be worshipping at Trinity Lutheran Church here in Sulphur again tomorrow. We are supposed to meet with the Pastor tomorrow.

Dominus Vobiscum,

samedi, novembre 27, 2004

It’s very late and I should be in bed, but if worked the graveyard shift (6pm to 6am) for the past four days and though I am off tonight I am still very much awake even at this late hour. I just finished reading an essay from I’ll Take My Stand: The South and the Agrarian Tradition. The essay is by Allen Tate and is titled Remarks on the Southern Religion. My response so far is "hummm."

Yesterday I arrived home from work at about 6:30. I went to bed and was wakened at 11am to get ready for Thanksgiving dinner. We went to Lisa’s sisters house, where her whole family gathered to feast and be thankful. I was privileged to be asked to pray over the meal, and then we all at our fill on to many good foods and desserts to name.

I visited with family and friends until about 3:15 when my bro-in-law "J" brought me back home. I gave him a quick tour of the house, said good by and went back to bed. I slept until 5:30pm. Gary J picked me up for work a few minutes after 6.

Gary and I sipped on Bourbon on my front porch this morning after work. After he left for home I went to bed and slept until 11:30am. I then got up, drank a cup of coffee and started helping Lisa put up the Christmas tree. At about 1:45 I realised the LSU vs Arkansas game had started, so I turned on the radio (we don’t have cable or a working antenna) to listen to the game.

After a particular play, I called MK on the phone to on it. Chester was at his house and he invited me over (again) to watch the game with them. Lisa urged me to go join them, which I did. After the game, Lisa, the little boys (the big kids were at their jobs) and I went to Longville to visit my folks. We had a good visit.

We got home just before 10 pm. Lisa and I put a DVD of the movie Khartoum (Staring Charlton Heston) on. I watched the whole thing, but Lisa feel asleep early in the movie. It’s a good movie.

I will now try once more to go to sleep.

Coram Deo,

mercredi, novembre 24, 2004

I haven’t blogged in a while. I’ve been busy at work and home. Some of the business was on things that are not all that important things, and others have been very important. MK and I made it to the LSU vs. Ole Miss game. Mitch T. and Chuck Y. Came with us, but they sat in another section of the stadium. We had a flat tire on the way home. We were on the Interstate near Welch, La when the right rear tire blew out. We got home about 2:30 am on Sunday.

Me, Lisa and the little boys again attended the nearby Lutheran Church (LCMS). The pastor had a good sermon. The liturgy is not very different than what we have at Bethel (PCA) (where the big kids went to Church).

Some big news that also saddens me a bit is my friend, and pastor of Covenant Presbyterian Church Bill Smith, and his family, may be leaving the area. He may going to pastor a PCA church in Louisville, Ky. This would put him near Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (the flagship of the SBC) and he could get his doctorate. Getting his doctorate is something we has wanted to do ever since I’ve known him.

Gary J. And I have car pooled to work the last couple of nights. He drives. We pick up a beer on the way home in the morning and drink it on my front porch. Yesterday we added a shot of Wild Turkey to our beer. We visited and drank our beer. When we finished he headed home and I went to bed.

I have not been able to read much lately, but I did finish book 1 of Calvin’s Institutes. The man was a absolutely brilliant. I can’t wait to read the whole thing, but it is going to take me a long time to finish it.

Coram Deo,

dimanche, novembre 14, 2004

I’m spending another Lord’s Day working at the refinery. My family is spread out today. Lisa and Morgan are in Monroe and will be attending Auburn Ave. Presbyterian Church. The little boys are with Reaux-Reaux and, like Christian, they are worshipping at Bethel PCA today.

Things are going well today. Matt brought some Ducks and pork (wild hog) and Cudd brought some deer sausage. Matt then made a homemade roux and then cooked an all wild game gumbo. That boy cooks a mean gumbo. He also fried up some of the duck breasts for an appetizer (yum). It was all very good.

We here at work are hoping for a quiet afternoon, because we all ate our fill. This has been a good week for food. While in Longville the other day, my mom cooked up some fresh mustard greens (with bacon), baked sweet potatoes and smoked pork steaks. That is a meal. I don’t get freshly cooked mustard greens very often, and they are so good.

I’ve read a number more articles from Richard Weaver’s book since last noted. I’m still working through Calvin’s Institutes and I’ve also read a number of things from the web, including the Battle for Fallugah.

When off work from the refinery, I’m doing some painting and other chores around our new house.

Coram Deo,

Ps. Andy Richard (pronounced Ree-shard, because it’s Cajun) said that he has not yet appeared in my blog. He's promised to stop and drink a few beers with me just so I will mention him on the blog. He is now officially mentioned, so he has to stop by the house and drink a beer or two on the front porch.

vendredi, novembre 12, 2004

I was able to enjoy most of this week off from work. I returned home from Beaumont Thursday evening a week ago, and did not return to work until yesterday. On Tuesday night The little boys and I went to Longville with our tent, shotgun and .22 rifle. We set up camp on a pipeline clearing on the back part of my parents ten acres. I set up the tent and started gathering fire wood. My brother Terry came and joined us around the fire. We drank a couple of cold beers, talked and watched the boys play, roast weiners and then marshmallows.

The boys had a great time. I let them stay up late and play with sticks by the fire (I was supervising closely) until one of the boys said he was tired. We then crawled into the tent, said our prayers and went to bed. It was cool out, and I slept good (considering I was on a thin piece of foam laid over hard grown). I had hoped the boys would sleep in after staying up late, but that was never going to happen.

They were up by 6 am and ready for me to get the fire going again, which I did. The good thing about camping where I did is mom is near by, and she soon had hot coffee ready.

We spent the day shooting guns and visiting and burning fire wood. The boys had a blast and I was completely worn out by the time we arrived back home (about 5 pm).

Coram Deo,

jeudi, novembre 11, 2004

Ok, I am going to post a political commentary on the blog, then I will get back to my regular day to day blogging. Here goes:

There is an interesting article I picked up The article is titled Louisiana Democrats: Few Happy Faces. It is worth reading.

The Louisiana Democratic Party, like the Democratic Party in the rest of the South is hemorrhaging badly, and the future does not bode well for them.

In the 19th Century the Republicans were the Radical anti-Southern party and the Democrats were the conservatives. During the 20th Century these two parties flip-flopped positions.

The South has, historically been, and still remains, the most conservative region of the United States. It’s a no brainer to see why Southerners have abandoned the Democratic Party in the past 30 years.

In 1984 the democrats held 20 of 26 Southern Senate seats. Today they hold only 4 seats and the Republicans hold 22 seats. The South has been abandoned by its old party. Conservatives are not welcome there.

The old time conservative Southern Democrat is nearly an extinct political species. It has been cast out by its old party, and has either turned (like myself) independent or Republican. The Dems have no one to blame but themselves and their friends who have taken the place of Southerners. They are Feminists, Homosexuals, the anti-gun lobby, pro-aborts, rabid environmentalists and anti-Christian secularists (to mention just some of them).

Deo Vindice,

mardi, novembre 09, 2004

I am so glad the elections (except for a few Louisiana congressional offices) are over and we can move on to other things, but before that here are my thoughts on things.

I have made clear on numerous occasions that I disagree strongly with neocon ideas, especially when it comes to international relations, and it is obvious that George W. Bush is surrounded by neocons. Still I am very happy that Kerry lost the election, and Bush won. This is because Kerry would certainly have placed liberal, activist, judges to the federal courts, including the Supreme Court. Bush is far more likely to place non-activist, constitutionally conservative men/women to the courts.

Republicans have a mixed record in their court appointments, especially on the Supreme Court. Dubya’s father gave us Justice Clarence Thomas (the best man on the court today) and Justice David Souter (one of the worst judges). Republican President Gerald Ford appointed Justice John Stevens onto the court, and he too is one of the more liberal and activist judges on the high court.

I am hopeful; the word is that President Bush is considering Clarence Thomas to replace ailing Chief Justice William Rehnquist. I think this would not just be historic (first black Chief Justice) but a wonderful choice, because Thomas is the best, conservative Justice on the court.

He could then (hopefully) nominate a truly conservative Hispanic, like Miguel Estrada , to replace Thomas. It is possible that he will opt for someone like Alberto Gonzales , who is an old Texas friend, but is not sound on a number of issues (like abortion and affirmative action). So GW may well follow his father and give us a mixed bag on the courts.
Now to Congress. I told some of my friends and co-workers that I could not for any reason vote to send a Democrat to Washington DC, because the Democratic Party is controlled by and beholding to radical/ liberal interest groups. A congressional Democrat would be under a great amount of pressure to fall in line with the party. This is not good.

The Democratic Party is rapidly losing the whole of the South, because it has been taken over by secular, pro-homosexual, pro-abortion, anti-Christian radicals.

Coram Deo,

Ps. This does not mean that the Republicans are the “good” party. They are (overall) only somewhat better. They too are far from a conservative party.

dimanche, novembre 07, 2004

I spent most of election week in Beaumont, Texas. An number of our Refineries Rescue Team members, including me, attended a Roco “Rescue III” training class . The training was great and we were not far from home (Lisa came over so we could go to dinner one night), so it was a good experience.

I was in Beaumont Tuesday for the election, but I had already voted absentee, so I was covered. I knew that turnout to vote was very high, and I expected that to turn things in Kerry’s favor. I was obviously wrong.

I'm trying to kick the information/news junkie habit, and I am doing pretty good. In the old days I would have watched the news from the moment I got back into the hotel until the wee morning hours (like MK did), but instead I went to eat with my other team members, came back to the hotel and read Calvin’s Institutes until I went to sleep.

I did wake up a 3:30 AM. It is then that I turned on Fox News and saw that Ohio and Florida were among the Bush/red states. I new Bush would be around for four more years. I have mentioned a number of times on these blogs that I don’t like the neo-con agenda, which Dubbya and his advisors hold to, but my main concern in this election was the Supreme Court. This President will likely get at least three anointments to the high court. With Bush we will get some (not all) good nominees. Kerry would have given us three very bad choices.

I made it back home Thursday evening, but did not have internet service until today. DSL was giving us some trouble, but BellSouth fixed the problem and we are back online.

Lisa, the little boys and I went to the Lutheran Church (LCMS )again this Sunday. Lisa seems to like the it there, and the Pastor seems to be theologically conservative and solid on social issues as well.

There are some differences between Reformed (my own theological view) and the Lutheran views, but they are not so big that we can not worship there. I do think I will read the Augsburg Confession this week. John Calvin signed the 1540 addition of the confession. I figure that if Calvin could sign it should be OK.

We did get to see how these brethren partook of the Eucharist today. They get up and go to the front of the church to receive the bread and wine instead of sitting in the pews.

Dominus Vobiscum,

dimanche, octobre 31, 2004

This was our first Halloween (All Saints / Reformation Day) in this new neighbourhood. The little boys were excited because of all the house for them to Trick or Treat at. Our old neighbour hood was much smaller and more in the country.

We had a couple of extra kids with us last nigh. We volunteered to keep the two children of some friends so they could attend a party. Lisa and Rhonda took the children trick or treating I stayed here to hand out candy, but Christian did that job for me.

The youngest child soon tired out, and Lisa took her home. I then went with the boys to continue the quest for candy and treats. They had a blast.

This morning we (Lisa, the little boys and our two extras) went to the early (traditional) service at the Lutheran Church. I think that was fitting considering this is Reformation Sunday (the day Martin Luther nailed the 95 Thesis to the church door at Wittenberg, Germany)
If read another of Richard Weaver’s essays titled Lee’s Philosophy. Like the other two articles I found it to be an insightful work. I am still working in Calvin’s Institutes as well. Calvin is amazing and his insights are, at times, tremendous. The more I read him, the more I like him.

I have to leave this evening for rescue training in Beaumont, Tx. I am glad our week long training is so close this year, that way I can still get with the family this week. I will bring Calvin, Weaver and Cicero with me to read. I would really like to get a lot reading done in the Institutes this week.

Coram Deo,

mercredi, octobre 27, 2004

Today was a somewhat busy day at work, especially this afternoon. The one big item we had to do was to purge and then line up one of our HDS hydrogen compressors. The whole crew jumped on the job and it and we got it done quick enough.

Christian and Ryan picked me up after work, then we went to pickup some Chinese takeout and came home. Morgan’s "beau," Sean, was at the house when we got here, and we all sat down at the new dinningroom set that Lisa purchased and enjoyed our supper.

The little boy’s were at their Reaux Reaux’s house (Lisa’s sister Rhonda) when I got home, and didn't get home until about 8 pm. My good friend David (Dah-veed), who lives in Grand Coteau called to remind us of the lunar eclipse, which had just started.

I called everyone onto the front porch to see the event. I explained what was happening to the little boys, who were soon bored, because of the eclipses slow progress. I went and got them now and then so they could witness the progress of the event. They were excited each time by the change, but were immediately ready to do other things.

I called them out again after the full eclipse was visible, then we went to their room, prayed, recited the The Apostles Creed, did our kisses and hugs and then they went to bed. I poured myself some bourbon (on ice) grabbed The Southern Essays of Richard M. Weaver and read his essay titled "The Older Religiousness in the South" while sitting alone on the front porch enjoying God’s awesome display in the heavens.

I’ve owned Weaver’s book for a number of years and I am just now reading it. I’m impressed!! This latest article was very good and useful.

It is past my bedtime, so I’m off to bed. 4:45 AM will come quickly and I am behind on my sleep quota for the week.

Dominus Vobiscum,

mardi, octobre 26, 2004

Yesterday was a work in the yard day. I dug up six camellia bushes that were in front of the porch. Gary came over and took them to plant at his house. He did bring a six-pack of Killians. So after we loaded the bushes we sat on the porch and enjoyed a couple of cold beers.

The little boys spotted a racoon climbing in the old oak in the backyard right about their bed time, so we all went outside, me carrying a flash light, and there was the racoon looking down on us. It was not near as excited as the little boys were.

Lisa and Christian came home from the store with a new dinning room set. I started putting it together. MK called while I was working on the table. He had a bottle of wine that needed to be consumed. I told him to come on by. He came over and we had a couple of glasses of Jacob’s Creek Shiraz (2001). It was a good wine. We then went for our walk around the neighbourhood. We talked about a number of issues (political and social) and then had a good time of prayer.

Oh! I also voted absentee yesterday. I will be glad when the election's over.

Coram Deo,

dimanche, octobre 24, 2004

Saturday MK and his son, Chester and his son, plus Christian, Ryan and I, all went to the LSU vs. Troy State game in Baton Rouge. We went in two vehicles. There was an accident on the bridge crossing the great Atchafalaya Basin , so we detoured north to highway 190. On the way back south to I-10 MK took a wrong turn and we drove a beautiful scenic route. We saw beautiful ancient cypress, and life oaks. And lots of sugar cane fields. We also passed through the town of Maringuin (Cajun for Mosquito). It was a nice drive. Then we were back on the interstate heading for Baton Rouge and Death Valley.

LSU tried awfully hard to loose the game put managed to pull out a win in the last part of the fourth quarter. The most interesting thing came at the beginning of the game, but it was not on the field but in the air above us. An owl (I think) came over, swooped down and caught something (a moth I think) and then flew off.

We had an uneventful drive home, and arrived here at two in the morning. This morning we got up and ready for church. Morgan spent the night in Longville and went to First Baptist up there. Christian and Ryan went to Bethel (PCA) and Lisa, the Little boys and I visited Trinity Lutheran Church ( Missouri Synod ), which is here in Sulphur. I enjoyed the service, though it was their “contemporary” service. I would like to visit the more traditional service. I would like to experience the traditional worship and liturgy.

I hope to take a nap this afternoon.

Coram Deo,

samedi, octobre 23, 2004

Friday was an ok day for me. I got home from work and went to bed about 6:30 am. Christian woke me at 11:30 am to see the air conditioner repairman. While he was here I called the electric company to try and fix an on going billing error that has come about since our move.
The billing error is fixed, but the AC man said that the problem is with the electrical breaker box and we need an electrician. Ugghh. I think we will see the electrician Monday. Thankfully we have a two units so half the house is cool.

The little boys and I went to the park again today and we raced back home. I did read an essay by Richard Weaver today. The article is “Two Types of American Individualism” and it is in a volume of his essays titled The Southern Essays of Richard M. Weaver . The book is published by Liberty Fund. They put out some GREAT stuff.

I found the article interesting; in it weaver compares the views of John Randolph of Roanoke (a political hero of mine) and Henry David Thoreau , who was a fine writer, but someone whom I dislike him and think little of his views.

This evening Gary and Liz called to see if we would like to go to supper with them. We were able to do so and they picked us up at about 6:45. We went to the local Chili’s Restaurant (love their two for the price of one bar) and ate. We then went dancing for a little while. We were home around 11.

It's way past my bed time.

Dominus Vobiscum,

Ps: I'm still making headway in Calvin.

mardi, octobre 19, 2004

My buddy Seep has just left for home. We've not been able to get together for a while, because of his or my schedule. He got here about 9:30 with a bottle of Beringer Merlot (2000). We opened it; poured a couple of glasses (MK was amazed that I actually had some wine glasses, because I usually serve the wine in jiggers) and sat at the table an discussed our thoughts on Calvin’s Institutes and other theological and other topics. My nephew Ryan joined in the early part of the conversation.

After a few glasses of wine and a good time of conversation we were ready to pray. So we walked a round the neighbourhood. MK lead off in prayer and when he finished I prayed. It was a good time of prayer and praise to our most holy and awesome Lord God.

I am tired. Christian and I spent a good bit of the morning at the Social Security office getting his birth date straight (they have him listed two years older than he is), then I spent most of the rest of the day removing, painting and replacing shutters on the house. Of course we worked on home work (and a little bike riding too).

Coram Deo,
Ps. The Merlot is all gone.
My buddy Pete needed to be off for a couple of days of his regular shift, so he and I did a trade. He is working for me tonight and tomorrow night and I will work the first two nights of his shift. So I am home this evening and AWAKE. I slept until after 1 pm so I’m hardly tired yet. So I am going to write a quick note for the blog and then read some in the Institutes.

The little boys and I went to the playground by the house. They played for a while and then they wanted me to spin them on the merry-go-round. "Faster - faster" was the repeated request from them. After a while of this I was ready for a break and sat down near by in the grass. The boys continued on the merry-go-round a bit longer. Then my 8 year old just laid there as the, soon to be 7 year old, pushed.

My 8 year old then got up an walked over toward me. He wasn’t looking very good, and he sat on my lap. We sat there a while then, when he did not start to feel better, I decided we needed to come home. So I put my boy on my back and we walked the two blocks to the house.

He then layed down with his mom for a while, before he lost his lunch. But he did recover quickly after the purge. Then it was time to do our routine of homework, baths and bed.

Deo Vindice,

samedi, octobre 16, 2004

I got off work at six this morning. I had a little task to do when I got home. That took about an hour, then I got ready for bed and crashed in my special room for when I’m on the graveyard shift. It is a very small, very dark, very cold room that I’ve made especially for sleeping when working graveyards. I sleep until about 2:30, then I got up and vegetated around the house for a while.

I did toss a football with my youngest son, before making a quick trip to the Lowes Hardware Store. Then I got ready for work.

Tonight we will be having more gumbo (it’s always better the next day). Mitch brought some smoked deer sausage to add to the pot. We will have a pretty good feast on that later this evening.

C. Cudd cooked some squirrels and sausage in a brown gravy today and brought it out to work. I had a nice serving of that, over some rice earlier this evening. It was very good. I need to get Cudd’s recipe. I’ve cooked my share of squirrel, but it’s never turned out that good.

We are trying to get together to make a squirrel hunt, but it doesn’t look promising for next week. However I’m hoping Christian and I can make a hunt next week. I’m also looking at taking the little boys on a little camping trip next week as well. All depends on my work and the weather.

In my reading I’ve noticed Calvin quotes from or refers to Cicero’s little book De Natura Deorum (On the Nature of the God’s). So I have acquired a copy of it and have started reading that as well as all the other “stuff” that I’m reading.

Gotta go; -- Dominus Vobiscum,
Lisa and I had the pleasure of each others company Thursday evening. The two of us went out alone to a local restaurant, where we enjoyed a nice meal and pleasant conversation together. After twenty-one years of marriage I still, very much, enjoy my wife’s company. I think I enjoy her company more now then ever before.

Our night out for fine dining, did through a little kink in our normal routine of home-work and baths for the little boys, but all got done as it was needed.

I did not get much reading done while I was off from work, but I did get some. I am still slowly working my way through Calvin’s Institutes. This is taking even longer than I thought, because he quotes lots of ancient secular and Christian writers, and I go and look them up and read what I can, before returning to Calvin. It is worth the time I am putting into it. I become more impressed with Calvin the more I read him.

I did finish the biography on Thomas Fairfax. It was a good, easy read.

I’m working tonight. Things a pretty quiet here at the refinery. I did bring all fixings for chicken and sausage gumbo tonight. The cool weather has made it down here to the Deep South, and in Cajun Country that usually means gumbo!!!

We all ate our fill and It was very good. (Mitch actually cooked it)

Coram Deo,

jeudi, octobre 14, 2004

We are now back on the web at home. We got DSL from BellSouth. When it is up and running it works fine, but for some reason we can’t access the web at times. We will find out why and (hopefully) get it fixed.

Things are going well. My youngest son has finished his reading to me for the day. He finished an A Beka reader yesterday and started on of our McGuffey’s Readers today. Our next to youngest will be finishing his McGuffey’s Reader in the next few days.

I grilled my first brisket two days ago. It was very good. I had to open a bottle of red wine to enjoy with the meat. It was a cabernet sauvignon and accented the meal wonderfully. Neither Lisa or the kids like red wine, so I have had it all to myself. There are benefits to having a family of semi tea-tottlers. (Lisa likes margaritas and some sweet drinks so my stuff is safe).

The first really nice cool front of the fall season came through this morning and it feels so nice outside. I would really like to go squirrel hunting. I hope I can do so next week when I work off of the graveyard shift.

We are still settling in to this new house. I still have lot’s of painting to do, and more light fixtures to change, but we are making headway.

I got a very bad headache while I was watching the presidential debate last night. It was a sinus headache and not caused by the debate (though it could have been). I’m glad the debates are over. I missed most of the first one, caught all of the second one and watched a little more than half of the last one before I went and buried my aching head under a pillow in a very dark room (to help my head).

I don’t think the debates are of much use for someone serious about the truth. They are interesting to hear spin, lies, half truths and rhetoric, but this is not what you depend on if you want to make an informed decision. Sadly though, this is where lots of folks will make their choice from.

I am not a member of either major political party, but at sometime in the past I had belonged to each at one time. I started out, like so many Southerners as a conservative democrat. But I became disillusioned with the Democratic Party very early on. I switched to the Republican Party after acquiring and reading the 1980 Democratic Presidential platform.

What I read in that platform shocked me. It was the platform of fellow Southerner Jimmy Carter and it was liberal to the gills. It had strong socialistic leanings, was pro-abortion and pro-homosexual rights. After I read the platform, I returned it to the co-worker who had loaned it to me. I thanked him and then went to the courthouse and changed party affiliations.

My leaving the Republican Party was not so dramatic. I simply don’t want to be a part of a party that I differ with on so many points. I am far closer to them than I am to the modern Democratic Party, but that is not saying a whole lot.

I have voted for people from both parties (and third parties), even when I belonged to a particular party. I have never voted a "party ticket" and never will. I will vote for the candidate that I think can do the best job no matter which party he/she belongs to, with this exception. I will never again vote for a Democrat to fill an office in Washington D.C.

I can not vote to put even a good democrat in the US House, US Senate or the Presidency. Party politics are too big a deal there and the Dems are too beholding to pro-abort, homosexuals, left-wing demagogic civil rights types (e.g. Jessie Jackson, Al Sharpton, etc...) and other assorted political degenerates.

When it comes to the US Congress or the President, I will be voting Republican (often while holding my nose) or I will vote third party.

Coram Deo,

vendredi, octobre 08, 2004

My blogging is still a bit off because I still don’t have internet access at the house. This should be remedied soon. I have subscribed with Bell South for DSL access. I am presently waiting for the DSL set-up to arrive and we will be good to go.

I worked overtime last weekend so I was only off Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday I ran a few errands and did some stuff around the house. Tuesday evening was routine. The little boys and I played with the football, then we did their spelling and reading home work before they took baths.

After their baths it was my turn to read to them, so I read them a chapter from Joanne De Jonge’s wonderful little book My Listening Ear (Discovering the Wonders of God's World). Then I read Hansel and Grettle from a children’s story book. After that we said our prayers. After our regular prayers we always recite either the Lord’s Prayer or the Apostles Creed.

Wednesday the little boys, Christian and I all went to Longville. I brought my mom her birthday present (Thursday was here birthday). We visited in Longville for most of the day. We returned home in the early evening and went about our routine.

Yesterday was a very busy weekday. We had a number of items hit our shift from almost the time we started the shift (6 AM) and stayed very busy most of the day. Lisa picked me up from work. She and Christian went out for a mother/son visit over supper at Outback Steakhouse. The little boys and Morgan were not home. So I stayed home alone and eat a nice salad (with a Killian’s), then I took a long hot bath and relaxed. After the bath I fixed myself a drink (made with moonshine, that I recently acquired, and coke – I can’t even sip the moonshine straight). I then got one of my current books and went to bed.

dimanche, octobre 03, 2004

I am at work tonight on overtime. I have to post from here because we still have not been hooked up to the internet at the new house. That is my fault, I will try to do something about it this week.

So far, here at work, the night has been fairly quiet in my area. I hope that continues for the whole weekend, because I will be out here tomorrow night (on overtime) again, then I should be off work until Thursday morning, when I will start my regular shift.

All the kids seem to like our new house and neighbourhood and things are slowly getting ordered at our new house. It’s been slow getting completely settled there because Lisa fell and hurt her tailbone (and got a black eye) about two weeks ago. She is getting around ok, but she still hurts and there is much that she can not do.

I have met a few of our new neighbours. One neighbour, Jody, works in maintenance out at the plant. I’ve known her for a number of years and she’s a nice lady. I met her husband the other day; and he seems to be an ok guy. Another neighbour, who I have met only once, is an eighth grade history teacher. I love history and hope to talk with him more.

Our next door neighbours to the south (Stan and Beverly) are old friends of our good friends TK and Kelly. They all attended First Baptist Church of Sulphur for many years together. Our neighbours still attend there and Stan teaches Sunday school there and I think he’s a deacon as well. These folks seem to be very nice and I've spoken with them on a number of occasions.

I think Lisa and kid’s are going to go to Morgan’s boyfriend’s church (Sales Street Baptist Church) tomorrow. I hope to wake up in time to make the 1pm service at Covenant Presbyterian Church (PCA) here in Sulphur.

I am still reading (slowly) in Calvin’s Institutes and I’m reading his letters as well. I am also making good headway in John Wilson’s biography of Thomas Fairfax (a Puritan general in the English Civil War). I’ve also started reading The Real Lincoln by Thomas DiLorenzo .

Let me get back to work.

Coram Deo,

mardi, septembre 28, 2004

I have not blogged in a long while. Lisa and I have moved to Sulphur and we have not yet gotten online service at the new house. I know I will be getting it soon. I plan to get DSL because we are not “planning” on getting cable at this new house, so I have a cable modem sitting in a box with nothing to do.

The Lord has really blessed us in this move. We got a good deal on our old house, and a good deal on the new (for us) house. The children seem to be happy with this move. The big kids -- Morgan, Christian and Ryan (our nephew) -- each has her/his own room and the little boys are sharing a room.

I now live just a few miles from work, so my commute to work is shorter - about five minutes. I really like that. The older children have a farther drive to get to university. So I guess its a trade off.

MK (Seep) and I went to the LSU game Saturday. Mike got a couple of tickets from a friend of his. M. Trahan (pronounced - Trah - hahn -- cut the "n" short) road with us. He and his wife were supposed to go to the game, but the wife got sick, so m. road with us.

It was my first time to go to an LSU game. MSU was a wiped by LSU. It was a lot of fun.

MK and I have decided to take on John Calvin's Institutes of the Christian Religion . I’ve used the Institutes for years in my studies and I’ve read a good deal in them, but I haven’t read them through from one end to the other. I hope to do so now.

I’ve also started reading a biography of Thomas Fairfax. Fairfax was a Puritan and Lord General of the Parliament’s army during the English Civil War.

I have also started reading Calvin's letters now that I have completed the correspondence of St. Cyprian (or as the old Cajuns would say his name "See-pree-yan").

Coram Deo,

jeudi, août 26, 2004

This going to be a short post. Lisa and I signed the papers on our new house yesterday and we signed the papers selling this house. So we are very busy packing, and getting ready to move. We will be moving this weekend.
We have been able to throw away a bunch of junk. Morgan and Lisa are working on a putting together a garage sale. I don’t want any part of that.
Well, I need to go pack some more stuff.


dimanche, août 15, 2004

Today is the Lord’s Day. I did not make it to church because I had to work. I work twelve hour shifts that go from six to six. Today I happened to be on days. I finish my last twelve hours on days tomorrow and will be off until Friday night.

Working Sundays, except for missing Worship services (which is a big deal) are not bad at the refinery where I work, because there are no generally maintenance people and view supervisors. Things are usually relaxed on the weekends.

I just finished saying our evening prayers with the little boys before I came to write for the blog. The boys were getting to bed late so I was going to cut or prayer time short. After we pray our regular prayers we then recite together either the Lord’s Prayer or the Apostles Creed. I was going to skip this last part of our prayer routine, but they would have none of that and wanted to recite the Lord’s Prayer. I was very pleased at this. I then gave them a very short (2 minute) lecture on what we meant when we say “hallowed be thy name” and then we recited the prayer together.

Lisa and I are supposed to sign all the papers to sell our house and buy the new house on the twenty-seventh of this month and we plan to start moving in the new (for us) house on the 28th. The new house is very close to some of my co-workers and to a few of my friends who attend Covenant Presbyterian Church in Sulphur, including the pastor Bill Smith.

I am making large strides in the correspondence of Cyprian (pronounced See-Pree-yan in Cajun), the Martyred Bishop of Carthage (258 AD). I am enjoying it very much and have found it quite interesting. I took a small break from Cyprian this weekend and read Imitation of Christ (book 1) by Thomas à Kempis . This is an absolute goldmine. Kempis lived from 1380-1471 and was a member of the Brothers of the Common Life. Which was a pre-Reformation spiritual renewal movement within the Medieval Church, that was centered in the Netherlands.

The book is written for Religious (i.e. Monks) so I do have points of disagreement with à Kempis, but it is clear that he loves the Lord and almost all that he says here needs to be heard by Christians today. His promotion of asceticism is (I believe) off base, but even this aspect of his book should be read and heeded to some extent to check the rabid materialism and “ME-ism” that has infested much of the Church and so many Christians in our own Culture.

The introduction, which was written in the late 19th century, to the copy of Imitation of Christ that I read pointed out that this book was then second only to the Bible as the most popular book of the day. I believe this book, which is well over 500 years old needs to be read by more Christians today.

Coram Deo,

jeudi, août 05, 2004

It’s been a while since I’ve posted. The unit shutdown kept me tide up for a couple of weeks. I was putting in some long, 13 ½ hour, hot, sweaty South Louisiana July days. All I did when I got home was take a bath, eat supper, kiss the wife and kids and go to bed. It was a rough two weeks.

All my family is well. Lisa is working a lot because a lady she works with was in a traffic accident a while back and she has not returned to work yet, so Lisa is taking care of her friend's clients as well as her own.

Terry’s daughters came in for the summer from Oregon. Brain (Shannon’s husband) is finally back from Iraq and the two of them are visiting his family in California. Brian (Sandy’s husband) is working on a pipeline in Oregon. Paul Soileau and company are in Canada, and have nearly finished the bike ride from Texas to Alaska.

It looks like Lisa and I may be moving to Sulphur. The business next door to our house would like to buy our place. Lisa found a house she likes in Sulphur, and we may be moving there soon. The new house is near a number of people I work with, and it is also right down the road from my good friend Rev. Bill Smith’s family.

Mike Seep is blogging again, so check his stuff out.

Coram Deo,

mardi, juillet 06, 2004

Today is July 6th and it is the 1st anniversary of my dear brother Gerry’s death. Over the past year I have cried many times as I’ve thought of Gerry. I loved him so very much and miss him dearly. Gerry was a great brother, a wonderful friend and always good to talk to.

A couple of years ago I brought a couple of friends, Damone and Izzy, to Gerry’s place to shoot some guns. Gerry had forty acres and I often went there to shoot with him. Anyway, Damone, Izzy and I went there to do some shooting. When I told Gerry I wanted to bring these fellas to his place, he was happy to let me bringing these young men to shoot their weapons (which they had never shot out of doors before).

Gerry had gone some where that morning and was not home when we got there. Later that day, after a lot of ammunition had been spent, Damone and Izzy got to meet Gerry and my dad. Later at work Damone was telling some of the guys at work about our outing. I remember he could not get over how nice Gerry and my dad were. Any time that event has come up he always makes a big deal of their kindness to himself and Izzy. (That means a lot to me when I hear things like that.)

The good news is Gerry is now with the Lord. I would not have been assured of that before he got cancer. He knew the truth before, but it was not evident in much of his life. The Lord was gracious to him even in this terrible sickness. We will meet again.

Now onto other matters.

Morgan and Jac made it to Virginia with no problems, though I was a basket case until they called safe and sound from the conference. They did get a good laugh when I showed up the night before they left with a new hand held GPS. They thought it was a “sweet” gesture, but they said they did not need it and that I should return it. So that’s what I did, and they made it to Virginia with out the GBS.

The children here at home are well. My eight year old and I meet with the session (i.e. Elders at Church). He was examined, and will be admitted to the Lord’s Table (Communion) next Sunday. Before we went to the session the little boys wanted to swing, so I pushed them on our rope swing that we have hanging from the oak tree in the front yard.

Tonight after we got home and they bathed they read to me, which is our normal routine. We then said our prayers (Lisa, the little boys and me) and I read them a chapter from Of Skies and Seas by Joanne E. DeJonge. I read Mrs DeJonge’s stuff to Morgan and Christian when they were young. It is great stuff.

This morning when I stepped out the front door to go to work, I heard a mocking bird (which is my favourite bird). I looked and saw a very brave, but foolhardy mocking bird standing about three feet from Christian’s cat fussing at it. The all black cat, Voodoo, just sat there paying the bird no mind at all. Mocking birds are brave and I’ve seen them fuss at and attack cats before, but I have never seen one standing so near a cat fussing at it like this one was. (He/she may be not be long for this world if it keeps that up.)

The bird flew off when I walked to my vehicle. It really tickled me to see that sight.

Our God is a great God,
Coram Deo,

samedi, juillet 03, 2004

My daughter and niece left this morning on a road trip to Virginia. They are heading to the Christian Worldview Student Conference which is held every year at Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Virginia.

The girls are very excited about this trip. This will be their third time to attend the conference. It is a very good conference put on by Calvary Reformed Presbyterian Church which is located in Hampton Virginia. Two years ago Mike and I drove a group of young people to the conference and were able to attend it ourselves. Last year the girls flew to the conference.

This year they decided on driving to Virginia. They are old enough to make the trip, but I am really nervous about letting them go. I know it will very likely turn out to be good for them. They are testing their wings. I wanted to not let them do it, but I know that that would not have been the right thing to do. So I have done what I can to make sure the trip goes well.

This has been a busy week and much has been going on. Emotionally this was a rough week. I have been worried about the girls making this trip. Also this week we came on Gerry’s first birthday since he passed away last year. That was hard. I did tear up on June 30th when I thought of Gerry on his birthday.

In my reading, I’m still reading Cyprian’s epistles. I have also been reading in the Apostolic Fathers, and I have even picked up the Iliad and continued it as well.

Coram Deo,

mardi, juin 29, 2004

I was extremely busy at work yesterday and today, but they have been good days. Yesterday I was working to get a hydrogen compressor ready for machinists to work on. I one point we had to shut down the work because of a thunderstorm. Everyone left the job site, but I stayed and watched an awesome lightening show. For an hour or so I as watched the storm pass just to the north of our plant. It was beautiful.

After a 10 hour work day, I came home and swung my youngest son on the swing that hangs from an oak tree in the front yard. While I was swinging my youngest, Christian, Ryan and our teenage across the street neighbour read the first three chapters of Acts. I joined them latter as they were having a discussion about biblical “stuff.” Later we went for a walk around the neighbourhood (2 ½ miles) and talked.

Today was busy at work again. We were working with the hydrogen compressor again. I was able to leave after just 8 ½ hours today. When I got home it was time to swing both the little boys on the oak tree swing.

Now I am typing and watching the Brit Hume’s news program on Fox News and typing this. I will soon (when Brit Hume is over) get back with the children.

Coram Deo,

Ps. It is still raining every day.
PPS. Lisa's friend Kim is doing much better. She is out of ICU and is recovering.

vendredi, juin 25, 2004

Today is the third day of nearly constant rain here in South Louisiana, though we did get to see the sun for a little while yesterday evening. I'm home today and out of the rain, but yesterday I had to work in the rain for much of the day (though I was not in the rain as much as the other guys with whom I was working.

Lisa’s very good friend, and her children were in a very bad accident early yesterday morning. Thankfully the children, while badly shaken, came through it unscathed. Lisa’s friend, Kim, is at the hospital in intensive care. She’s banged up pretty badly. Last night, when conscious for a short while she said that she swerved to miss an on coming car in her lane. Thank the Lord; none of Kim’s injuries seem life threatening, so we are hoping for a slow but full recovery.

I took the day off because I was tired and I wanted to be available for Kim and her family if they are in need of any help.

I finished reading Tertullian’s Apologeticum a few nights ago. It was a good read and there were insights there that I found useful. I plan to read more of Tertullian latter, but for know I would like to read some works from other church fathers. This morning I read The Life and Passion of Cyprian, Bishop and Martyr by Pontius the Deacon, who was a disciple of Cyprian in Carthage and not long after writing this short biographical sketch of Cyprian also became a martyr of the Faith of Jesus Christ.
I now plan to begin reading some of Cyprian’s own writings. Cyprian is an important man of the early Church. He, like Tertullian and Augustine was a native of Romanized North Africa.

Lisa and I had a good time at the Turner’s the other night. The other couple were friends of the Turner’s though I had meet the gentleman a number of years ago. All three of us men are members of the Sons of Confederate Veterans and so the South and the Late War of Northern Aggression was a fair part of our conversation.
It was good that Lisa and I brought a fifth of Rebel Yell Bourbon (this is Mr. Turner’s preferred whiskey) because they had run dry of the stuff. It was a time of good friends, good conversation, good food, good wine, good dessert, good bourbon and good coffee. That’s hard to beat.

Let me get to other things.
Coram Deo,

mercredi, juin 23, 2004

I'm still working straight days. This week I am working 10 hour days, instead of the eight hours a day I worked last week. Lisa and I have a dinner date this evening, at the Turner’s. There is another couple invited as well, but I don’t think I know them. All three of us men, who are going to be there tonight, are (from what I have been told) Confederate types. So after supper we will have to sit around, sip bourbon (I think I’ll pick up a 5th of Rebel Yell for the occasion) and reminisce about the Lost Cause.

Things have been going well at home. Ryan is still with us, and he is welcome for as long as he likes. He’s started reading some works that I’ve suggested. He should have finished Francis Schaeffer’s How Should We Then Live. He also recently completed the Gospel of Luke and has started the Book of Acts. Christian too recently finished reading Luke and has also started in Acts. He is also reading my old Western Civ. book from college.

The other night the three of us (Christian, Ryan and I) went for a 2 mile walk. During our walk we saw a satellite (space station?). We were trying to figure out what planets we could see, but we were only able to make guesses. We need to look some sky charts.

Coram Deo,

vendredi, juin 18, 2004

It has been over week since I have been able to sit down and write on any of my three blogs. I was taken off shift this week and worked 8 hour days, from 7-3. I am working on the operations plan of an upcoming turn-a-round (i.e. shutdown, catalyst change and maintenance). I think a lot was done, but there is still more that I need to do and will have next week off shift to complete that work.

Wednesday of this week we had a feast at work. Mat brought ten cleaned squirrels someone else brought some deer sausage other folks brought more items. Bud cooked the squirrels and deer sausage in a wonderful gravy. This was a feast when placed over the South Louisiana /Cajun staple- rice. Marlin (Big Dog) provided pecan pie and Blue Bell ice-cream for dessert.

After a feast like that we were kind of useless after our dinner, and luckily it was a mostly quiet afternoon at work that day. The guys had cooked up rabbit and deer sausage the day before, but sadly I missed that meal.

It has been nice to get home early every afternoon this week. The little boys and I were able to go for a number of afternoon walks. I get to point out certain birds and trees for them. We also did our evening readings (them to me and me to them) and of course we pray together every night.

I’m now going to finish this blog and go grab a book and read for a while. I recently started reading Tertullian. Tertullian was born about 160 AD and lived as a pagan before he converted to the Christian faith in the mid to late 190's. He was an educated man of his day and was literate in both Greek and Latin. I’ve read a little of Tertullian’s stuff in the past. Right now I am about half way through his Apologeticum.

I am still working my way through the Iliad and of course I am still reading lots of other stuff. Today I read Peter Leithart’s review of Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar. I found Leithart’s review to be very insightful and interesting.

Coram Deo,

jeudi, juin 10, 2004

After working last night, I finished this series of graveyards, though the rest of my shift has to work again tonight. Upon leaving the plant Gary J and I stopped at the Circle K for a beer and fellowship before we headed to our respective homes. I got to bed about 6:30 and drifted immediately to sleep.

I awoke this afternoon about one. I was alone and took some time to prayer. After a season of prayer I went outside, sat under the oak in the front of our yard, and began to read. It was warm out, but the grass under the shade of the tree was nice and cool.

I lay on my back with my head leaning on the tree and the monkey grass we planted around the trunk. It was nice laying there reading. There were doves cooing in the trees around me, occasionally a mocking bird would sing or a bluejay let out his hoarse call, and in the ditch at the end of the road, which always has waterin it, a bullfrog joined his voice in with the birds.

I was reading the last of Keith Mathison’s book The Shape of Sola Scriptura. I have read a number of Mathison’s books, and respect him as both a scholar and a writer, but this book was far better and (to my mind) more important than I could have imagined before I read it.

This is the most important book that I have read in at least five years, and maybe as many as ten years. I can not recommend this book to highly.

Coram Deo,

vendredi, juin 04, 2004

My shift finished up on Wednesday evening. I had worked 96 hours in the previous 7 days and had started those seven days work nights and then flip flopped to daylights after a couple of days. On the first two days on daylights I worked 16 hours, starting at 2 AM. In all that my sleep pattern was seriously messed up, because of switching from night shift to day shift, and I did not sleep well. When I fell asleep last Wednesday night I slept for about 13 hours straight.

Yesterday, after my long sleep, I got up and worked around the house. And spent time with Lisa and the kids. The little boys read to me from our McGuffey’s Readers. They are both improving nicely in their ability to read aloud. After they each read to me, I then read to them from a book that we have started. We then had a time of prayer before they were put to bed.

Some weeks back, after our reading and prayer time, I picked up one of them by his hands and feet and placed him in his bed. The other immediately insisted that I do the same for him. They both find this to be a great way of going to bed, so now it has become the routine when I am home. I pick each one up by grabbing both hands and ankles and place them in their beds. They then beg for me to do it again and I usually succumb to their pleas and do it twice.

With all the hours I worked and the trouble we were having at work, I have not been able to read a lot. I am still reading Mathison’s book The Shape of Sola Scriptura. I detoured off of this book again to check out another quote. The Quote was from St. Thomas so read a good bit in St. Thomas AquinasSumma Theologica. I am also reading The Iliad. I have read parts of it in high school but have never read the whole thing. I am also continuing with Fyodor Dostoevsky’s The Brothers Karamazov on tape. One of the tapes was garbled, this equals 1 ½ hours of reading, so I had to read that section for myself.

I am enjoying all three books, though they are very different from one another.

At this moment Lisa is at work, Christian and Ryan have gone to run a few errands and Morgan has taken the little boys to see the new Harry Potter movie. The were supposed to meeting their cousins at the theatre.

I would like to go to Longville this afternoon to visit and do a little fishing. I hope we can go but it will depend on how things play out.

Coram Deo,

lundi, mai 31, 2004

The guys and I are spending our memorial day out here at the refinery. Thankfully I’m working my regular 12 hour day instead of the 16 hour days that I worked Saturday and Sunday. This has been a busy holiday weekend for those of us working out here at the plant.

Everyone pitched in for a big meal today. Young Mr. Trahan (pronounced Trah-Hahn [short on the n]) cooked crawfish étouffée for us, and it was very good.

Lisa and I are supposed to go to the Kleinman’s for supper this evening. Folks are supposed to arrive at six, but I will be just getting home from work then, so we will have to be fashionably late.

I have a top operators meeting to go to, so I have to go.


samedi, mai 29, 2004

This has been a rough day for me, but my work day is almost over. I plan to head straight home, take a long bath (while sipping on a little Bourbon) and then read until I fall asleep, which should not take very long at all.

I had to work the graveyard shift on what should have been my last to days off, but Peter twisted his ankle and I was on call to cover him. That was not to bad, but we had a problem, on the last of the two nights. On that last shift, the potential problem did not happen and I went home and went to bed.

I got up at about 2 PM. (this is Friday afternoon). Lisa, soon after I got up, left for New Orleans; She and a couple of lady friends are going shopping. The big kids took off to Longville and I stayed home with the little boys. We did our thing for a few hours, then I fed them, got them cleaned up and brought them to spend the night with Lisa’s sister (Their dear Reaux-Reaux).

When I got home, I noticed that the refinery had called and they wanted me to come to work at two in the morning. I did what I needed to do and then went back to bed. Of course I had slept until 2PM, so I could not fall asleep. I tossed and turned, read some Dostoevsky, hoping that would put me to sleep, but nothing worked. At 1:10 AM I got up, got dressed and came to work.

I am now coming to the end of a very long work day, and all I want to to do is get cleaned up and go to bed.


mardi, mai 25, 2004

Today is a very sad day for me. I am off today so I’ve been working around the house. I cut the grass in the backyard this afternoon. After I finished I came in to get cleaned up. (Now here’s the sad part) I opened my very last bottle of my home brewed beer, then I filled the tub with water, got my copy of the Iliad off the shelf and settled into the tube. Sipping on home brewed beer, reading a classical work, while relaxing in the tub is a wonderful way to end working in the yard.

It's time to get the little boys reading and math work started so this blog must be short.

Coram Deo,

dimanche, mai 23, 2004

After my shift relief arrived on Saturday morning, a few of my buddies and I went to a nearby Circle K for an after graveyard shift beer. We sat on a tailgate, drank our beer, conversed for a while before we headed out for our separate homes.

I had to go by Kroger’s and buy some groceries before I went home. I crawled into bed at about 7:00. Normally I would have snuggled with Lisa, but she is in Houston this weekend. I fell asleep immediately. Our youngest son woke me at about 7:20. He was coughing, so I gave him some medicine and put him back in bed and fell back into my bed and sleep to about 3 pm. That was an unusually good day of sleep.

After I got up, I vegetated in the house for a while before joining the little boys in the backyard. They were playing on their “clubhouse.” I went to check on the blackberry’s that we have planted and found it had a number of ripe berries, so I called one of the boys over to help pick the berries. He and I were steadily picking and eating the big luscious berries, when I looked down and saw a snake coiled up right in front of me.

I was startled and jumped away. I got a rake and picked the snake up and moved him to where I could see him better. It was a hognose snake.

I love hognose snakes. I called my non-berry eating young son over and gave the two boys a demonstration of how this snake acts when he encounters a person. The snake, true to his nature, flared his neck and opened his mouth trying to look as menacing as he could. I then struck the ground next to the snake, and he convulsed a bit and rolled over on his back to play dead.

Next I rolled him over on his belly a few times, so the boys could watch him immediately switch back to laying on his back. Hognose snakes seem to think that they must be on their back in order to play dead. I picked the snake up so the boys could touch him. I then let him go in a rose bush so neither of our cats would get him.

By the time I let the snake go, it was time to head for work again. We were very busy trouble shooting a couple of items early in the shift but things have now slowed down.

When I went to the central control room for our top-operators meeting with the shift supervisors, I found a gecko by the door and caught it. I was hoping to bring it home to show the boys but it got away.

Lisa should be home before I leave for work tomorrow.
Dieu bénissent notre famille! Amen.

Coram Deo,

jeudi, mai 20, 2004

This is my second night on graveyard shift. Last night was a good shift, and we are hoping for the same tonight. My old friend LaCasse is working to with us this evening. He and I are both working as top operators (something like a working foreman) this evening.

LaCassse brought a some Cajun CD’s and I have a few with me, so we are looking forward to hearing Cajun Music tonight.

Lacasse's CD’s include Steve Riley and the Mamou Playboys, Richard LeBouef and Two Step , Moe-D , Wayne Toups and I have The Lost Bayou Ramblers, the great Alphonse “Bois Sec” Ardoin and Les Frère Michot.

I have picked up The Shape of Sola Scriptura by Keith Mathison. I’m 100 pages into the book and all I can say so far is wow!!

I’ve gotta go. There is work to do.

Coram Deo,

dimanche, mai 16, 2004

Today was another Lord’s day. Lisa, the little boys and I all worshipped at Bethel this morning. Our niece, Lauren, worshipped with us today. Another niece, Jac, invited her to join us. Lauren was raised in the United Methodist Church. She and her parents are conservative Christian people.

Our older children were not in town and did not worship with us. Morgan just got back to town and Christian, and his cousin Ryan, are spending the night in Longville.

Mike and I were going to get together this evening, but I didn’t here from him. So it ain’t gonna happen tonight. I think I will open a bottle of wine and have a glass or two on my own.

I have a little work to do before going to bed so good night.

Coram Deo,

samedi, mai 15, 2004

There has been almost constant rain this week. I worked Days at the refinery from Tuesday thru Friday, which is a busy time for us. When our shift got to work Tuesday morning we found that one of our Reformer units was down and the powers that be were trying to decide what to do. The unit came down because the CCR was in trouble. That shutdown kept us busy all week, especially my buddy Craig Cudd.

I assigned him to take care of the shut downed CCR, when I thought it was not such a major task. I has turned into a near full blown turnaround and he is having to work today and perhaps tomorrow (on our days off).

I promised him that I would sign up for overtime next time we are on call so he will be not be on call.

Christian, Morgan and Lisa are at work and I am home with the little boys and my nephew Ryan, who has been staying with us for about a week now. They are all playing with the Game Cube. I’m going to read to them as soon as they finish the next game then they will both have to read to me.

I am going to encourage Ryan to read the Bible while I do read with the little boys.

I’ve finished A Prayer For Owen Meany by John Irving. It is the first novel that I’ve read in a long time. The man is certainly a talented writer and I though a lot of much of his style, but some of his sexual stuff was, though there is not a lot of it in the 545 page book, still I thought it to be out of place and superfluous to the story. The basic story was pretty good, but I feel the climax was somewhat anticlimactic.

I think Mr. Irving’s religious and political views that appear in his book are certainly on the liberal end of the spectrum (which is not unusual). He is able to express those views through the main character in the book. Irving’s knowledge of recent history is clearly shown in the work. Much of the book was entertaining, but over all I would give it a “just ok” rating.

I am currently listening to Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov. I was hesitant to get this book, because of my past experience with Russian authors. I wanted to read this book because I have heard a good bit about it. So far it is good on tape.

I plan to turn back to non-fiction in my personal reading, which is my preferred type of reading. I may read a biography, a theological work or perhaps both.

Coram Deo,

lundi, mai 10, 2004

Saturday was a work in the yard and around the house day for Lisa and me. We had to get things ready for today. Lisa’s family came over for mothers day, my paw-in-law birthday and, since the family was here, our sons upcoming birthday.

Sunday morning I got up and made breakfast for the family. I made some pain perdu (lost bread). That’s the Cajun name for what the rest of the country calls French Toast. Lisa requested this meal for Mother’s Day.

After breakfast we got dressed and went to church. The worship service was good. I was assigned to say the offertory prayer. After church we came home. After changing into shorts and flip-flops, I went to the back porch and got the BBQ pits going. We had burgers and hotdogs, along with all kinds of other good stuff.

It was a nice time with the family. Some folks were playing pitch and catch, others were sitting around talking about everyday stuff. We had a good mothers day.
Saturday was a work in the yard and around the house day for Lisa and me. We had to get things ready for today. Lisa’s family came over for mothers day, my paw-in-law birthday and, since the family was here, our sons upcoming birthday.

Sunday morning I got up and made breakfast for the family. I made some pain perdu (lost bread). That’s the Cajun name for what the rest of the country calls French Toast. Lisa requested this meal for Mother’s Day.

After breakfast we got dressed and went to church. The worship service was good. I was assigned to say the offertory prayer. After church we came home. After changing into shorts and flip-flops, I went to the back porch and got the BBQ pits going. We had burgers and hotdogs, along with all kinds of other good stuff.

It was a nice time with the family. Some folks were playing pitch and catch, others were sitting around talking about everyday stuff. We had a good mothers day.

vendredi, mai 07, 2004

I worked off shift Wednesday morning. I slept all that day. I have tried to get up early in the past but I am both useless and miserable when I do that, so if I go ahead and sleep, I’m still useless but I ‘m rested and feel a lot better. Wednesday was a wash. Did a little around the house and had the little boys read to me before putting them to bed. I pay them for reading, which motivates them to do so.

I was up late that evening. We had a small family emergency that kept me up until about 3 in the morning, I likely could not have fallen asleep much before that anyway. This small emergency seems to have resolved itself to the benefit of all. I hope so, and there seems to be good reason for such optimism.

I slept in a bit on Thursday. My dad called about 10 in the morning. He was on his way to pick me up. We went to work on an old trailer house for my nieces Shannon. It is my late brother Gerry’s old place. It is in very bad shape and we are hoping to make it livable. Gerry and his family moved from there 10 or more years ago. He allowed some of his wife’s kin people to live there for almost nothing. They were supposed to keep the place up. They did not do a good job keeping their end of the bargain very well.

Shannon’s husband is in Iraq. He is one of the those soldiers that was supposed to have returned home but had his time in that bloody God forsaken place extended. Dad and I worked on the place with Shannon. We worked as long as my dad was able. We got a good deal done before dad was to tired to continue. Then we called it quits.

I spent the rest of the daylight hours at home with the family. The boys and I went for a walk. We stopped at the cow pasture to chat. There I sat down in the grass and I explained the Eucharist to them and asked them questions. We then continued our walk.

That evening I propositioned the little boys with a fishing trip. They both wanted to go and Lisa gave her blessing. The boys and I headed to my parents house to spend the night. We got there late, about 10:30, and mom and dad were already in bed. Mom had prepared us all a place to sleep. Grif was asleep before we got there. I placed Grif in a bed and Haden laid on a couch near me.

I stayed up reading until after 1 in the morning. Next morning Mom got up and made coffee, bacon and eggs for the boys and me. After we ate the little boys and I headed for Brian and Sandy’s pond. We fished for a while. Haden was, as usual, the first to become bored with fishing, He went off playing with the paddle boat and other interesting items. Grif and I fished a good bit longer. The fish were not biting real well, but we caught several nice size perch, enough to make a meal for a few people.

Eventualy both boys gave up fishing. and we then went for canoe ride. Then we went for an extended ride in Sandy’s paddle boat. The boys worked the paddle and I worked the rudder. The boys enjoyed this boat much more than the canoe. It is almost impossible to turn over, so I didn't make them wear life jackets. I would never allow such a thing in the canoe.

We had great fun paddling around the pond. We then returned to Mom’s house for dinner (the noon meal). After a good meal of Lima beans, bacon and rice, I then cleaned the fish and we headed back to town. I brought the fish to my in-laws. The boys and I visited with them for and hour are so.

I am blessed with wonderful in-laws. They are fine people and have always supported Lisa and me without the least bit of interference in our marriage. Lisa and I both have very good people for in-laws. This is important. I can’t count the number of friends and family members whose marriages have suffered because of bad (sorry) in-laws.

After a good visit on the back porch with my maw and paw-in-law, the boys and I headed home. Lisa and I worked in the yard for the rest of the afternoon. She and all the boys are now asleep, Morgan is at the college working on an art project, as his her boyfriend.

I am drinking a glass, or two of wine, or maybe three (perhaps four) and watching the movie Rob Roy on DVD as I write this. Rob Roy is a good movie, but it has some very hard scenes in it. Still I like this movie a lot. In it a man, does what he must for the sake of honour. I like honour.

Honour is an old quaint concept lost in the modern, and even more so in the post-modern world. I'm a dinosaur and should not exist in either the modern or post-modern world. I hope to see the return of honour and the death of the modern and post-modern world. (note:My beloved brother Gerry too was a dinosaur. DEO VINDICE)

I will now say a Cajun "bon nuit" (good night).

Coram Deo,