Sunday, June 22, 2008

Introduction and Explanation

First, a brief biography: My first name is Megan, my last name is none of your business, and my usual internet handle is the Sojourner. I am 18 years old, preparing for my sophomore year at Franciscan University of Steubenville. (I skipped sixth grade, in case you're curious.) I'm majoring in journalism and theology; I'm also in the Honors program because being a double-major doesn't get my blood pressure high enough for my liking. (I'm something of a chronic worrier and honestly prefer it if I have something like school to stress out over--school I can conquer.)

I've been blogging at But I Digress... since November of 2007. In June of 2008 I started discerning a second blog; if you're reading this it means that God gave me the green light and this blog went public while But I Digress... went private. If you know me personally or have someone who knows me personally who can vouch for you, feel free to request access to my private ramblings. If you don't know me personally you will have to be content with my more serious side, as expressed on this blog. The name, Thinking of Things Aloft, comes from The Apology, the reference is explained more thoroughly in my previous post. I hope the main content of this blog will be fairly reflective essay-style posts, but given the way my brain works there will probably be a lot of dry humor even in those. I also hope to occasionally give a somewhat more personal look at things. More on that in subsequent paragraphs.

The main goal of my life is to know, love, and serve God with all my heart, soul, mind, and strength. I was raised Roman Catholic and about six years ago (a few months before my Confirmation) made the conscious decision to be an active Catholic--which, in my view, means asking questions. Even the hard questions. Especially the hard questions. I question God because I believe He has the answers. Sometimes I don't like His answers. There have been plenty of times when I've had temper tantrums with Him because He isn't running the universe the way I want it run. Faith is one of the areas in which I hope to get personal from time to time. I love the intellectual pursuit that is theology, but my faith means nothing if it's all in my head. I've made it a practice since I started blogging not to sugarcoat the fact that having faith is sometimes a struggle. Knowing in your head that God is King of the Universe doesn't mean it's always easy to trust Him with your life.

Another of my interests is education. Now, when I say "discussing education" I do not mean getting tangled up in the public school v. private school v. home school debate. I do have opinions on that subject--considering that I have, in my 13 years of formal education, had 4 years in a public school, 8 years in a home school, and 1 year (so far) in a private school, I can hardly help but have opinions. However, I'd rather look at it from a philosophical standpoint: What are we trying to learn? Why are we trying to learn it? What is the best way to learn what we need to know? Perhaps we'll even synthesize theology and education by asking what Menon asked Socrates: Can virtue be taught?

Then there's a question which is somewhat contentious in our society today: the relationship between men and women. Being a woman myself, I've more than a passing interest in the feminist movement. I'd like to explore what they did right, what they did wrong, and whether what they're doing now is hurting or helping women. The goal of this is not to bash the feminist movement, but to attempt to discover what the dynamic between the sexes ought to be. Again, there is going to be a synthesis of this with theology. Everything synthesizes with theology eventually because eventually everything goes back to God. As a subheading of the men and women topic, I'd like to discuss courtship and romance. This is a topic I'm very interested in for a number of reasons, not the least of which is the fact that I'm currently involved in a courtship with a fellow Franciscan student whom some of you might know as Shakespeare's Cobbler. (He blogs at Ventures 'Neath Aeviternity and also contributes to The Three Anachronisms and The Literary Videogame Project.) Although one of the purposes of going to two blogs was to keep personal aspects of our relationship private, in addition to consulting the great body of literature (both ancient and modern) dedicated to romantic relationships, I will also draw on the things the Cobbler and I are learning as we discern our own relationship--so you might notice the occasional personal update if you're looking.

I also hope to do more pro-life writing, which I never did much of on my old blog despite the fact that it's an issue near and dear to my heart. I don't intend merely to talk about abortion. Yes, abortion is one of the greatest attacks against life in our day, but at the same time I occasionally get thoroughly creeped out by the modern idea that there is some kind of standard human beings ought to conform to in order to have rights. All you have to do is look at people like Terri Shiavo to know that there is something wrong with our culture. I have two close relatives who are on SSI because they can't entirely take care of themselves. I wonder sometimes if one of these days people are going to decide that people like these ones I love are not worth supporting anymore. I don't like this idea that we can arbitrarily decide who is worthy of being called human and who is not; abortion is just the tip of that iceberg.

Beyond that, you might get days when I feel like discussing anything from politics to videogames (the Cobbler has been teaching me about those). I will also recycle posts from my old blog, partly because if I'm writing a series of posts on a topic and I've already addressed one element, I'm not going to re-write that; and partly because there will be weeks (or months) when I'm too busy or too tired to come up with original material, and I hope to post here fairly often (perhaps once or twice a week would be a good goal to begin with).

In short, welcome to my world. I hope you enjoy your stay.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Breathing

I used to spend a week just breathing--Treebeard

Dear Readers,

I have, over the last couple of days, come to the decision that I need to take a break from this blog. I'm posting this more for personal accountability than anything else, since I think most (if not all) of the people who follow this blog have other means of contacting me if they want to know how I'm doing.

I need to do three things: 1) Be more present to my family. I didn't come home for the summer so I could sit in my room and stare at the computer all day. 2) Revive the practice of Epic Emails. I have a fair number of long-distance friends and while the blog is a good way of keeping in touch it isn't the same. 3) Figure out how to court Scott without feeling the need to post about it continually. Just because we're both bloggers doesn't mean our relationship needs to be publicized, and just because I wrote a couple of "He is NOT MY BOYFRIEND" comments doesn't mean I need to write a thousand "He is my boyfriend, yay!" comments.

So, I'll see you in July. Take care, dear readers.

I find this amusing

Earlier today I was giving the Sister a ride someplace and on the way back from dropping her off I had a car chewing my bumper. Finally we stopped at a red light and I looked at the driver of the car in my rear-view mirror.

It was a white-haired woman.

I officially drive slower than an old lady.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Version 3

Generate a Barack Obama Quote!




"You know, there's a lot of talk in this country about injustice. Well I think Americans are tired of the same old cockroaches. Ordinary Americans believe in babies, they want less
scorpions, they just aren't sure if their leaders believe in change."
Generate your Barack Obama quote at Buttafly.com



(Thanks to Literacy-chic for the link.)

Version 2

Generate a Barack Obama Quote!




"These people haven't had change for fifty years. So you can't be surprised if they get bitter and cling to their cockroaches and their scorpions and their barrels of toxic waste. That's what my campaign is about. Teaching all the little people in this country that they can have babies."
Generate your Barack Obama quote at Buttafly.com


"We need babies, not scorpions."

Generate a Barack Obama Quote!




"I think it's time we had a national conversation about injustice. We need to get past all the cockroaches and recognize that we are our own best hope for overcoming barrels of toxic waste. We need babies, not scorpions. Babies are our change. And we need to have change in injustice."
Generate your Barack Obama quote at Buttafly.com


I messed with it a little bit, of course, by making my positive noun "babies." Not very Obama-ish, that. My vague postive concept (change) was taken straight from the man himself, though.

How We Roll, Part 2

"I made a Spanish family and I need help with Spanish names."

"Okay, just let me lick off this piece of cardboard here..."

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Sugar High

Mom: I must admit I think the chocolate frosting on the chocolate cake is a little much...it's like that ice cream we got in West Salem that was dipped in chocolate. That tasted like somebody had put syrup in a tub of frosting.

Me: Oooooh, that's a good idea. [hysterical laughter]

Mom: You have had too much sugar.*

Me: [more laughter]

Mom: I'm going to warn Scott not to let you have sugar.

*Too much sugar = two pieces of cake and a bowl of ice cream. We celebrate birthdays properly here.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Project Domestic Conquest: Day Thirty-Five

Tomorrow is my mother's birthday, the day after is Father's Day, and next week is Scott's birthday. So the Sister and I had some shopping to do today. We went to a certain store that is part of a worldwide chain and got five cards and two presents. Thanks to some shopping I did at the campus bookstore before I left last month, we now have Mom's birthday presents & cards, Dad's presents & cards, and I have a card for Scott. I don't have a present for Scott (yet) because I am a Bad Girlfriend who procrastinates and then doesn't have time to choose a present properly and refuses to just buy something.

How long did this take us?

Eighteen minutes.

Haha.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

A snapshot of my day

Sister: [making duck noises]

Me: Are you practicing?

Sister: Yep!

Mom: Practicing what?

Me: Scott taught her how to make more realistic duck noises.

Dad: Just what we need...

Saturday, June 7, 2008

How We Roll

"The cocoa fairy needs to figure out how to go color her hair."

This was an actual sentence spoken in serious conversation in my house.

Friday, June 6, 2008

My apologies

My mother was put out that I implied, in the comments section of my last post, that she would not recognize a quote from The Princess Bride. First, because "You guys watch that movie practically every day, I've heard it a thousand times." and second because, apparently, in a previous epoch of her life (before the Sister and I came along) she actually went and saw The Princess Bride. In theaters.

Amazing the things one's parents did in their impetuous youths.

Scott, out of context

" 'Goodnight, sleep well, I'll most likely call you in the morning'--for three years he said that."

Mega-points go to whomever can guess what movie he was parodying.

Oh, and it's been two months. Two exceedingly wonderful months. Not that anybody's counting.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Project Domestic Conquest: Day Twenty-Six

Yesterday, I decided I was going to be Domestic Girl and cook dinner all by myself. What I didn't think about was that we had a young visitor staying for dinner last night. So, yesterday's Domestic Challenge was "How to Cook Dinner While Redirecting a Hyperactive Seven-Year-Old." That's an essential life skill right there.

On an unrelated topic, between the two of us Scott and I work from 5:45 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. today--yet he still managed to find a time when we could talk on the phone. Have I mentioned that I love this guy?

Sunday, June 1, 2008

The Warrior Princess is Tired

Life has been hitting me hard these past few days. No great tragedies--just a bunch of things not quite working out the way I hope. Every now and then I'll wonder why. I mean, big tragedies I can understand. Job had big tragedies. There aren't any books of the Bible, though, about people who have one of those days where they fall out of bed and things go downhill from there (Well, I didn't fall out of bed--something to be thankful for, I suppose, especially since I was on the top bunk last night). I mean, why would the Devil care whether you burn your breakfast or whether your favorite shirt gets a stain or anything like that? Why would he bother to keep on hitting you with a thousand little things that go wrong?

I won't go on, because I'd rather not gripe on the blog, but I just wanted to mention that my inner warrior princess is just plain exhausted--these past two months or so it seems like she's had to be on the alert constantly. There have been a few major battles and then a hundred tiny skirmishes, such that she hardly gets a moment's rest. And she is very, very tired of fighting.