Saturday, October 10, 2009

The bear is tired - updated

Yesterday at noon I picked up the church keys. On the way home I stopped at the church.

Since I no longer have all the files I used to have from earlier computers and different software, I do not have masters of worship books just sitting and waiting to be printed. So this morning I did the tedious cutting and pasting to put a Eucharistic liturgy into a 12-page folded booklet. If you have ever done something like this, you know you have to arrange the two half-pages on one sheet so you have pages 12-1, 2-11, 10-3, 4-9, 8-5, and 6-7. (I used to have PageMaker which assembled all that for me.) Much simpler doing the lesson insert, though still requiring attention. I'm glad I have done so many things like this in the past or I would have been lost.

Today I stopped at the church again and took some measurements, verified a few items.

Then I went shopping. Stopped first at the wrong branch of a church supply store - which wasted time but gave me exercise walking 7 blocks each way from my car. It was a beautiful fall day and nice to be out. Granted, the balloon crowd made for some congestion - on the roads and on the sidewalks (this was Old Town).

Headed further east for the main store. Oops, I-40 has three (count them, three) lanes closed up ahead.

Finally got to the store. Picked up items that were not in the church: a pall, corporals, purificators, hosts, communion wine. Actually, everything but the wine. Was headed home when I remembered that and circled back. They are not a liquor store so there was paperwork with the sale of altar wine.

Stopped at a supermarket. I picked up some food for me but also got hand soap for all the bathrooms at the church. Some bottled water to mingle with the wine (not putting ABQ tap water in, thanks). And a gallon of purified water for holy water. No sense in blessing just a bit at a time.

Stopped to have copies made. Thirty copies of a service booklet with Holy Eucharist II, Eucharistic Prayer A. (There are no prayer books in the church.) Fifteen copies of tomorrow's lessons.

Got home and harvested a few small tomatoes. Had my only meal of the day.

Blessed holy water. I use the full traditional ritual, exorcising salt and water first - English translation of the old Rituale Romanum. I don't mess around when it comes to holy water.

Stapled service booklets and folded those and the lesson inserts.

Assembled, in addition to items already mentioned, toilet paper, paper towels, dish soap, regular towels for the sacristy, pruning shears for flowers, matches, altar candles and candle holders, a San Damiano crucifix, a couple of icons, sponges, and stuff I have already forgotten.

I am still working on a sign for out front. For now, it's hand painted or nothing.

Hemmed a piece of green African fabric that was just the right size for a frontal.

Will work on the sign and the sermon.

A new adventure. A new ministry.

Brother Bear's Traveling Salvation Show is almost ready.

To bed shortly.

Thanks for your prayers, everybody.

UPDATE: Sign completed. To bed.

--the BB

Pray for Wangaratta

Oh, and pray for Rob too!

"You have called me here to be repeatedly born in the Spirit... in light, in knowledge, in unknowing, in faith, in awareness, in gratitude, in poverty, in presence and in praise."
--Thomas Merton, Conjectures of a Guilty Bystander

It has been quite a journey since he and I were in CPE together.

Every blessing on his ministry.

--the BB

By any measure all Americans should be proud

Ms Rachel lays it out for us all.

h/t to blackwaterdog

--the BB

The journey away from religious abuse

The pain came as I began to realize for the first time that I had been using my faith to bring harm to others.
--Brent Childers

Another journey from religious homophobia to support of equal rights. Read it all here.

National Coming Out Day: 11 October 2009

--the BB

Planting my butt in the chair

Karen Armstrong on "faith":
It was only in the late 17th century that 'belief' came to mean an intellectual assent to a rather dubious proposition. Just look up 'belief' in a good, historical dictionary!

At this time, truth was becoming more notional in the scientific West. We were losing the more traditional form of faith which saw religion as a practical activity. Like driving, swimming, dancing or gymnastics, you learn the truths of faith only by constant, dedicated practice - not by reading texts or adopting a metaphysical 'belief'. Like a myth, a religious doctrine is essentially a program of action. It makes no sense unless it is translated into practical action that helps you to dethrone egotism, selfishness and greed by practicing compassion to all living beings. In the book, I try to show how doctrines like the Incarnation or Trinity were originally a summons to selflessness and compassion and that we only discover their truth by making these qualities a reality in our own lives.

Read the whole article here.

My professor of Hebrew Scripture, back in my Baptist seminary days, told us that the biblical notion of faith was not intellectual assent to the proposition that a chair would hold me, it was sitting in the chair, committing myself in the most practical manner. It was thus about how I lived and where I made my commitments and not about my abstract belief system.

Karen Armstrong is attempting to remind us all of this. Hooray for her.

--the BB

Heart thread - 10/09/2009

My niece Paula writes:
Last year our grandson Austin participated in a fundraiser for one of his classmates who had cancer. She passed away last night and would ask you to please add the family to your prayers.

From the blog, Sammie Hartsfield:
Dear Sweet Sammie passed away today Oct 9th at 3 AM..

She fought hard and we could not ask for any more from her..
May she rest in peace and rise in glory.

Paula also writes of my sister Shirley:
Mom isn’t doing too well these days and each time I’m in Fresno to see them she looks more and more frail.
My cousin LaDonna writes of my Aunt Olga:
My mom has macular degeneration and can't see very well, but thankfully she is still able to live on her own.
Let us continue to keep Ellie in our prayers. And Allie. Jonathan is away so prayers for MP and Mrs. MP. Safe travels and return home for Mimi. Ongoing prayers for Roseann and Gary. Continued healing for JimB and Janet and Kathy and Diane. For James recuperating from a bout of H1N1. For all who teach (and grade papers) including several of our dear friends. For Jack.

KJ has the most wonderful news:
A HUGE "Thanks be to God!" After 20 months of treatment for breast cancer, my sister Karen's scan was a big "negative". At last! A test that is just fine to fail. Thanks to all who have remembered her in prayers over the past many months.
For folks at the Balloon Fiesta here in Albuquerque as it moves into its final weekend, that they may all be safe (we've had one accident this year already).

For David's family and friends and neighbors.

For peace and all who pursue it.

--the BB

Friday, October 09, 2009


DoD: Army Casualty Identified
Sgt. 1st Class Kenneth W. Westbrook, 41, of Shiprock, N.M., died Oct. 7 at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., of wounds suffered Sept. 8 when insurgents attacked his unit in the Ganjigal Valley, Afghanistan, using small arms and indirect fire. He was assigned to the 1st Brigade, 1st Infantry Division, Fort Riley, Kan.

Alan Grayson speaks for me

"Madame Speaker, I have words for Democrats and Republicans tonight."

"Let's start with the Democrats"

"We as a party have spent the last six months, the greatest minds in our party, dwelling on the question, the unbelievably consuming question of how to get Olympia Snowe to vote on health care reform. I want to remind us all that Olympia Snowe was not elected President last year. Olympia Snowe has no veto power in the Senate. Olympia Snowe represents a state with one half of one percent of America's population."

"What America wants is health care reform. America doesn't care if it gets 51 votes in the Senate or 60 votes in the Senate or 83 votes in the Senate, in fact America doesn't even care about that, it doesn't care about that at all. What America cares about is this; there are over 1 million Americans who go broke every single year trying to pay their health care bills. America cares a lot about that. America cares about the fact that there are 44,780 Americans who die every single year on account of not having health care, that's 122 every day. America sure cares a lot about that. America cares about the fact that if you have a pre-existing condition, even if you have health insurance, it's not covered. America cares about that a lot. America cares about the fact that you can get all the health care you need as long as you don't need any. America cares about that a lot. But America does not care about procedures, processes, personalities, America doesn't care about that at all."

"So we have to remember that as Democrats, we have to remember that what's at stake here is life and death, enormous amounts of money, and people are counting upon us to move ahead. America understands what's good for America. America cares about health care, America cares about jobs, America cares about education, about energy independance, America does not care about processes politicians or personalities or anything like that."

"And I have a few words for my Republican friends tonight as well. I guess I do have some Republican friends."

"Let me say this; last week I held up this report here and I pointed out that in America there are 44,789 Americans that die every year according to this Harvard report published in this peer reviewed journal because they have no health insurance. That's an extra 44,789 Americans who die who's lives could be saved, and their response was to ask me for an apology."

"To ask me for an apology?"

"That's right. To ask ME for an apology!"

"Well, I'm telling you this; I will not apologize. I will not apologize. I will not apologize for a simple reason; America doesn't care about your feelings. I violated no rules by pulling this report to America's attention, I think a lot of people didn't know about it beforehand. But America DOES care about health care in America."

"And if you're against it, then get out of the way. Just get out of the way. You can lead, you can follow or you can get out of the way. And I'm telling you now to get out of the way."
"American understands that there is one party in this country that is favor of health care reform and one party that is against it, and they know why."

"They understand that if Barack Obama were somehow able to cure hunger in the world the Republicans would blame him for overpopulation"

"They understand that if Barack Obama could somehow bring about world peace they would blame him for destroying the defense industry."

"In fact, they understand that if Barack Obama has a BLT sandwhich tommorrow for lunch, they will try to ban bacon."

"But that's not what America wants, America wants solutions to it's problems and that begins with health care, and that's what I'm speaking for tonight."

"I yield back the balance of my time"

Lifted via MinistryOfTruth

Preach it, Brother Grayson!

--the BB

This evening I walked into a church

The former congregation has left. The Episcopal Church is too diverse and messy for their taste. Of their future they affirm "Nothing will change about this Church, Christ's and ours, except it will be totally obedient to Jesus Christ and His eternal Word in witness before a watching world."

May they indeed be faithful witnesses to Christ.

Tomorrow I will be preparing to open the doors on Sunday and welcome "whosoever will." If even one other person shows up we will celebrate Eucharist.

I ask your prayers.

For all who have ever worshiped in that place.

For those who have walked away.

For those yet to enter those doors.

May we all find and be found by the One who is the lover of our souls.

--the BB

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Hallowe'en would not be complete without the boogeyman

Rove ponders (a fantasy scene from the Rude Pundit):
It's just so easy to make Democrats show their haunches, ready to be fucked. He reads his most recent Wall Street Journal column ... where he uses the grimmest possible polls to try to demonstrate that Democrats will lose power if they pass health care reform. "You see? You let 'em get that knot in their stomach, that feeling they're gonna shit themselves if they take a risk, even if the absolute reverse is the truth. That's called fear. And fear makes you freeze. And nothing gets done."

Yep, the Dems get played like violins. If they could jettison fear, what might they accomplish? Go, Alan Grayson! Kick ass, Barbara Lee!

Farewells and food

Jeanetta's memorial service was this afternoon. She was from Kentucky and a wonderful, plaintive bluegrass "I'll fly away" was sung and accompanied by a fiddle. Beautifully done and very moving. Her brother Jim gave a deeply touching eulogy.

Those were complete in themselves. For my liturgical money one could have segued into the recessional "Shower the people," and everything essential would have been said and done (at least in a non-sacramental context).

In keeping with brother Jim's exhortation I told our teenage nephew and godson that I love him and he hugged his uncles back.

May she rest in peace and rise in glory (though for her I keep preferring to say "may she dance with angels").

Since an immense crowd was likely headed to the house afterward (the church was filled to overflow seating), Bill and I sneaked off and had dinner at La Provence afterward. After dinner he went over to the house and I headed home.

We shared a really nice 2007 La Violette Côtes du Rhône Moillard. He had a house salad and I had crab cakes on mesclun. The flavor was lovely (though I would have liked a crisper sear on the outside to add to the texture).

Next he had canard à l'orange with an Israeli couscous (with cheese). The couscous was interesting (mouth feel more like a timbale of risotto) and duck divine. I had the porc ardéchois, a double pork chop on a bed of fabulous smashed potatoes with a cranberry and apple chutney. Every mouthful was terrific.

Since we were on a roll, Bill had a crême brulée: classic and perfection. I had a lemon tart that was, as I like my lemon desserts, wonderfully tart. A strawberry and caramel coulis ribboned with crême anglaise balanced it out. Did I mention all this went with a truly lovely wine?

I am feeling very mellow this evening. Exquisite food can do that.

Peace out!

--the BB


DoD: Army Casualty Identified
Maj. Tad T. Hervas, 48, of Coon Rapids, Minn., died Oct. 6 at Contingency Operating Base Basra, Iraq, of injuries sustained from a non-combat related incident. He was assigned to the 34th Infantry Regiment, Rosemont, Minn.

DoD: Army Identifies Casualty
Spc. Paul E. Andersen, 49, of Dowagiac, Mich., died Oct. 1 in Baghdad, Iraq, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his camp using indirect fire. He was assigned to the 855th Quartermaster Company, South Bend, Ind.


DoD: Army Casualties Identified (2 of 2)
Pfc. Alan H. Newton Jr., 26, of Asheboro, N.C...died Oct. 2 in Murcheh, Afghanistan, from wounds suffered when they were attacked by a suicide bomber. They were assigned to the 422nd Civil Affairs Battalion, Greensboro, N.C.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (1 of 2)
Capt. Benjamin A. Sklaver, 32, of Medford, Mass...died Oct. 2 in Murcheh, Afghanistan, from wounds suffered when they were attacked by a suicide bomber. They were assigned to the 422nd Civil Affairs Battalion, Greensboro, N.C.

DoD: Army Identifies Casualty
Sgt. Thomas D. Rabjohn, 39, of Litchfield Park, Ariz., died Oct. 3 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when an improvised explosive device detonated during an attempt to disarm it. He was assigned to the 363rd Explosive Ordnance Detachment, Coolidge, Ariz.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (8 of 8)
Pfc. Kevin C. Thomson, 22, of Reno, Nev...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (7 of 8)
Spc. Stephan L. Mace, 21, of Lovettsville, Va...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (6 of 8)
Spc. Christopher T. Griffin, 24, of Kincheloe, Mich...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (5 of 8)
Sgt. Michael P. Scusa, 22, of Villas, N.J...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (4 of 8)
Sgt. Joshua J. Kirk, 30, of South Portland, Maine...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (3 of 8)
Sgt. Joshua M. Hardt, 24, of Applegate, Calif...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (2 of 8)
Sgt. Justin T. Gallegos, 27, of Tucson, Ariz...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualties Identified (1 of 8)
Staff Sgt. Vernon W. Martin, 25 of Savannah, Ga...died Oct. 3 in Kamdesh, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked their contingency outpost with small arms, rocket-propelled grenade and indirect fires.

DoD: Army Casualty Identified
Spc. Kevin O. Hill, 23, of Brooklyn, N.Y., died Oct. 4 at Contingency Outpost Dehanna, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit using small arms and indirect fires. He was assigned to the 576th Mobility Augmentation Company, Fort Carson, Colo.

May they rest in peace and rise in glory.

This could be better than tar and feathers, so I signed


"Any Democratic senators who support a Republican attempt to block a vote on health care reform should be stripped of their leadership titles. Americans deserve a clean up-or-down vote on health care."

You may sign it here.

--the BB

Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Journeying mercies...

... and all that but Dulcis Jesu! how I miss Mimi when she is on the road and not blogging or commenting.

Hope she's having a wonderful time.

--the BB

I bless God for you

Come Holy Spirit,
fill the hearts
of your faithful people
and kindle in them
the fire of your Love.

General news postings

I confess that I have been putting up more links to articles at facebook and fewer here. My apologies, sports fans. It is one reason I have posted less here. Another is that I have been on the run. Lots of socializing throughout the past weekend. Crashed very early Monday evening. Last night I had dinner with a friend and the evening was largely gone by the time I got home.

One thing you ought not to conclude would be that I am feeling less passionate about national politics and international policy. The whole health care issue remains a very big deal with me. As well it should. I was only very partially employed from 2003 through early 2008. My insurance premiums (medical, dental, life) total almost $10,000/year and my copays vary from about $1,000/year to several thousand dollars/year. I know what it is like to come a hair's breadth from losing health insurance. I have pre-existing conditions. Serious reform cannot come soon enough for me. And I am one of the lucky ones.

The dithering and dallying and general sellout of the American people in the Senate Finance Committee really riles my 'rrhoids.

No, we don't need or want any damn triggers! The health insurance industry has already demonstrated, for decades, that it has no intention to play fair or to give a damn about anyone's health so we don't need to wait any longer to see if they will start playing fair now. Not. Gonna. Happen. So, Olympia darling, will you just drink a big cup of STFU? The lives and health of the American people are too high a price to pay for your one damn vote.

The thought of Senator Baucus being allowed anywhere near a negotiating table when it's time to hammer out the final product should send us all to Capitol Hill with torches and pitchforks. Actually, with a rail and some tar and feathers. Now there's a grand old American tradition I would - in my very wicked heart - like to restore.

In spite of some faint noises, is there anyone who really believes Harry Reid is gonna grow a set at this point? Really?

Abrupt change of topic:
Creative writing has been infrequent of late so nothing much to report on the adventures of the princess and her band of warriors and warmaidens. I suspect the throne is gathering dust.

And in weather we continue to have leaves starting to fall, breezes blowing to help knock those leaves off the trees and send them scooting along the ground, and some dramatic thunder and rain early this morning. Beautiful days with sudden shifts.

Alora, amici, queste sono le notizie d'oggi.

--the BB


There is opportunity to do some supply for a church in my own neighborhood. The level of church involvement I currently have is quite comfortable but one never knows what surprises the Holy Spirit has for us. Over the years I have become increasingly aware of my need for balance and opportunities like this are fraught with potential for both good and ill. So I am asking for prayers for discernment. I know this crowd is great at offering prayer support so I thank you in advance.

--the BB

Monday, October 05, 2009

Afghanistan - stay informed, folks!

Afghanistan's presidential election, held Aug. 20, should have been a milestone in the country's transition from 30 years of war to stability and democracy. Instead, it was just the opposite. As many as 30 percent of Karzai's votes were fraudulent, and lesser fraud was committed on behalf of other candidates. In several provinces, including Kandahar, four to 10 times as many votes were recorded as voters actually cast. The fraud has handed the Taliban its greatest strategic victory in eight years of fighting the United States and its Afghan partners.

The election was a foreseeable train wreck. Unlike the United Nations-run elections in 2004, this balloting was managed by Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission (IEC). Despite its name, the commission is subservient to Karzai, who appointed its seven members. Even so, the international role was extensive. The United States and other Western nations paid the more than $300 million to hold the vote, and U.N. technical staff took the lead in organizing much of the process, including printing ballot papers, distributing election materials and designing safeguards against fraud.

Part of my job was to supervise all this U.N. support. In July, I learned that at least 1,500 polling centers (out of 7,000) were to be located in places so insecure that no one from the IEC, the Afghan National Army or the Afghan National Police had ever visited them. Clearly, these polling centers would not open on Election Day. At a minimum, their existence on the books would create large-scale confusion, but I was more concerned about the risk of fraud.
--Peter W. Galbraith, WaPo

Peter W. Galbraith served as deputy special representative of the United Nations in Afghanistan from June until last week.

Juan Cole's comment on all this includes these words:
One of the keys to successful counter-insurgency is the establishment of government legitimacy and efficiency. In Afghanistan, things are going in the opposite direction.
[Emphasis mine]

Cole also says this about the current situation:
This report in Dari Persian about hundreds of demonstrators in the western city of Herat who came out Sunday to chant "Death to America" is the sort of thing that keeps me up at night. The protest was also a funeral procession, for a 20-year-old Afghan man, who had been traveling on a road outside the city when he was kidnapped. The thugs demanded a $100,000 ransom, which his family did not have. The demonstrators, however, blamed the United States and the Karzai government for the lack of security. That is, as security deteriorates, there is a danger of a snowball effect, whereby the US loses any legitimacy even in the eyes of Persian-speaking Tajiks precisely because it is unable to provide basic needs like security. If the foreigners aren't even useful foreigners, the Afghans are unlikely to want them occupying the country.
[Emphasis mine again]

Marine Lance Cpl. Roy Aeschlimann takes cover during a shootout with Taliban militants in the southern Afghan province of Helmand. (Brennan Linsley / Associated Press / October 4) - source

I read news like the following and shudder:
WASHINGTON (CNN) -- Defense Secretary Robert Gates declared Monday that the United States will remain in Afghanistan for the foreseeable future, no matter what President Obama decides on immediate troop levels.
Or this (Laura King at the Los Angeles Times):
Reporting from Kabul, Afghanistan - In one of the most lethal battles for American troops in the Afghanistan war, a wave of insurgents attacked a pair of relatively lightly manned bases near the Pakistani border over the weekend, triggering a daylong clash that left eight Americans and as many as half a dozen Afghan troops dead.

It was precisely the kind of attack the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan is hoping to stave off by recently ordering troops to withdraw from such small outposts, concentrating instead on defending population centers. The outposts attacked Saturday had already been slated to be abandoned soon, the military said.


Military officials describe the attack on the jointly run U.S.-Afghan outposts in the Kamdesh district as a tightly coordinated onslaught by hundreds of insurgents.
The problem is that no one can define what "success" in Afghanistan would mean for us.

History is littered with great powers that thought they could occupy or control this part of the world. None succeeded.

So WTF are we doing there, or think we are going to do? Nothing good can come from allying ourselves with a corrupt and incompetent central government, "elected" by fraud and controlling only a small portion of the nation.

I want better reasons, clearer goals, and - thank you, Colin Powell - an exit strategy before committing more troops in Afghanistan or, for that matter, leaving the ones presently there.

And, no matter how strongly McChrystal believes what he is saying and even if he is right, he is not going through channels and should have his ass fired. If you want to tell the President something, tell him. Don't go all over the place with leaks and speeches trying to force his hand. Remember how all the Rethugs went apeshit over anyone who disagreed with, questioned, or vaguely undercut AWOL Bush?

Right now it's a loser's game with no coherent goal or strategy. We shoot ourselves in the foot on a daily basis.

I am glad the President is not rushing into a decision on this.

--the BB

Dance with the angels! - updated

Jeanetta Braziel yielded her radiant spirit yesterday morning. In the past year she lived life as fully as possible and in this photo she looks fabulous. Hard to believe that was just over three months ago.

May she rest in peace and rise in glory. May Rich and the rest of the Braziel family be consoled in their grief.

Jeanetta Braziel died peacefully at her home in Albuquerque on Sunday, October 4, 2009. Her husband Rich was with her at the time of her death. Jeanetta was the hub of a large and loving circle of friends and family. She lived and died filled with love and grace, leaving a hole that will never be filled although our precious memories will remain. Few touch the lives of so many in such a powerful and positive way. Jeanetta was born in Hopkinsville, Kentucky on October 9, 1952 to Frances and James Arndell. She grew up in Kentucky and Albuquerque and graduated from UNM with degrees in speech/language pathology and special education. She worked as a speech/language pathologist in California, returning to Albuquerque to finish graduate school. Jeanetta served her entire professional career as an educator at Jefferson Middle School, both as a teacher of gifted students and as a counselor. She loved Jefferson, her students and their families, her colleagues and the work to which she dedicated her life. Jeanetta was preceded in death by her father, James Arndell. She will be greatly missed by her family, including her husband Richard Braziel; her mother Frances Arndell; her daughter Lawren Carmignani; her daughter Christen Pike, her husband John and their two sons Jackson and Parker; her brother Jim Arndell, his wife Cindy and their son Conner; her sister Debbie Giles, her husband Rich and their sons Jason and Ryan; and countless devoted friends and members of her extended family. Services will be held on Thursday, October 8, 2009, 4:00 p.m., at Monte Vista Christian Church, 3501 Campus NE. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Jeanetta Braziel Memorial Fund which will be used to provide clothing for homeless students at Jefferson Middle School, 712 Girard Blvd. NE, Albuquerque, NM 87106 attn: Mike McNamera.
--Obituary in the Albuquerque Journal

--the BB

Good weekend

Today was busy. Blessing of the animals. We had over two dozen dogs in church throughout the service. And a gray African parrot inches from my left shoulder (I have a phobia about birds but with a cage I'm cool... mostly). made for a lively time with vocalizations from our elder siblings. Blessed all of them, two horses, and several photos of cats. Father Anskar was there and he and Malachi Matthew Melchizedek Mole both got blessed by Mother Rhonda. Some of you will recall Molesy's trauma of the last three years. He is doing much better. I thought he could use some special love today.

Had lunch with a friend and a lovely long chat. Visited some other friends this evening. No time to blog. Very tired. Already up way too late for a school night.

Sweet dreams, y'all!

--the BB

Sunday, October 04, 2009


Ten US soldiers killed in Afghanistan
Times Online - ‎1 hour ago‎
Ten American troops were killed at the weekend in two surprise attacks that caused alarm in Nato's US-led coalition. In one, hundreds of insurgents attacked a pair of isolated outposts in eastern Afghanistan, killing eight US soldiers and several ...

10/04/09 NYTimes:
Eight U.S. Soldiers Dead in Bold Attack in Afghanistan
Insurgents besieged two American outposts in eastern Afghanistan on Saturday, American and Afghan officials said, killing eight Americans and two Afghan policemen in a bold daylight strike that was the deadliest for American soldiers in more than a year.

DoD: Identifies Army Casualty
Sgt. Roberto D. Sanchez, 24 of Satellite Beach, Fla., died Oct. 1 in Kandahar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his unit with an improvised explosive device. He was assigned to the 1st Battalion, 75th Ranger Regiment, Hunter Army Airfield Ga.

DoD: Identifies Army Casualty
Sgt. Ryan C. Adams, 26 of Rhinelander, Wisc., died Oct. 2 in Logar province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when enemy forces attacked his vehicle using rocket-propelled grenade fire. He was assigned to the 91st Engineer Company (Sapper), Wisconsin Army National Guard, Rhinelander, Wisc.
DoD: Identifies Army Casualty
Spc. Russell S. Hercules Jr., 22 of Murfreesboro, Tenn., died Oct. 1 in Wardak province, Afghanistan, of wounds suffered when insurgents attacked his unit using small arms fire. He was assigned to the 4th Battalion, 101st Aviation Regiment, 159th Combat Aviation Brigade, 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault), Fort Campbell, Ky.