Archive for October, 2007

My daughter is allergic to peanuts…

Wednesday, October 31st, 2007

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Fortunately, her father is a big fan.

For more pics of the Alexander Halloween activities, visit our family photo album.

Thanks!

Wednesday, October 31st, 2007

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This is a pic of several of our staff at a dinner to honor one of our staff who is leaving us. One of the great joys of my life is sharing ministry with such a talented and dedicated group of lay people who love God and have a deep commitment to serving him in all areas of their life.

Thanks for a great year Dana! We will miss you more than you know!

Upgrading to Leopard

Wednesday, October 31st, 2007

CAUTION: Techy & Geeky post ahead…

Last Friday, I received my Leopard upgrade disk in the mail. When I pre-ordered from Apple, I was surprised to see “delivers by Oct. 26th” in the order confirmation. I figured I would have to wait a few days from the launch date, but I actually had the operating system installed and working before the 6 p.m. launch time.

Upgrading

My first attempt to do the upgrade had some issues. After contacting Apple, I reinstalled using an “Archive and Install” which worked fine. To perform an Archive and install click “options” at the screen where it asks you which disk you would like to install the operation system on. The only thing you need to remember to do if you do an archive and install is to delete the “previous system” folder which will be on your hard drive. This is basically a copy of system folders and settings that will be eating up around 10 – 15 gbs until you take out the trash. After your system is up and running, you can get rid of it.

Performance

After upgrade, my system booted up as normal and everything is functioning great. I think I will be waiting on an upgrade to the program that I use to sync my blackberry, but other than that, all programs functioning just fine in their new environment. Leopard runs very smoothly and at this point, I would say that my system is actually working faster than it was with Tiger. It seems like I’m seeing the spinning wheel on a much more infrequent basis.

What I love

If you’ve seen a preview of Leopard, you are probably under the impression that the majority of the changes are simply “eye candy,” that didn’t add too much functionality. To some extent this is true, but there are a ton of features that greatly enhance the user experience. Here are a few examples.

Spaces

Spaces functions as virtual desktops which allows you to organize your windows according to the type of work you are doing in each of those windows. One of my favorite parts of spaces is the ability to default certain programs to open in certain spaces. In other words, I have iChat set up to default to space four where nothing else resides. That keeps my iChat windows out of sight and out of mind unless someone jumps on. I have Safari and Mail to default to space two which sets up a space for web browsing & email, and Pages, Keynote, Numbers defaults to space one. It’s very GTD/Merlin Mann because you have a wonderful ability to minimize distractions and focus on a particular task.

Finder

The Finder is another example of something that is both “pretty” and functional” Cover flow browsing is wonderful, especially when used in conjunction with Quick Look to be able to browse through your documents in a very quick way. I also really like the sidebar which shows you attached devices, other networked computers, as well as your personal drive folders. The finder is greatly improved.

Mail

With gmail recently introducing imap, I have started using Apple Mail again, and I the addition of ToDo’s, Reminders, and Data detection are wonderful enhancements to Mail. Stronger integration with iCal is also a big plus. I lift this up because in their marketing of Leopard, all Apple seems to be talking about it the pretty stationery. I’m not sure I’ll ever use that, but the other additions have really strengthened the functionality of Mail. iCal’s interface is also a lot better.

Time Machine

Finally, Time Machine. I purchased an external drive (250 gb’s for only $90) to work with Time Machine and after formatting the drive, Time Machine was up and running. The great thing about Time Machine is that I never have to think about it until I need it. I am really happy to have this extra security for my data within such a simple process.

If you’re wondering about an upgrade, I would certainly recommend Leopard. It is certainly a step forward in terms of the visual look of the operating system, but I think you will also find it’s a great enhancement to the functionality as well.

Another speaking tour

Tuesday, October 30th, 2007

I hope you already have purchased your tickets to see Rob Bell at Nokia here in a few weeks. Another great speaker is coming our way in February. Brian McLaren will be leading the “Everything Must Change” speaking tour which is actually a two day conference based on his latest book that shares the same title. Cost is reasonable and it’s being held in Dallas, February 22nd – 23rd. Many disagree and I don’t buy everything, but I would argue that McLaren is one of the most important theologians of our time.

Here’s the website for more info.

Book info:



“Everything Must Change: Jesus, Global Crises, and a Revolution of Hope” (Brian McLaren)

It’s finally here!

Friday, October 26th, 2007

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Today is a great day!

Anna at the Pumpkin Patch

Thursday, October 25th, 2007

Tonight, we made our annual trip to the Pumpkin patch to pick out our family of pumpkins. We came home with one big mama pumpkin to carve and four little babies. Here’s some pics of our little girl @ the patch. .

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A howling wind

Monday, October 22nd, 2007

Just got back from a quick camping trip with my two of my best friends who also happen to be pastors. We try to get away together on a somewhat regular basis to relax and bond. It was a great trip even though we got caught in a pretty big storm last night. We expected it to be somewhat windy. We didn’t expect howling winds and a pretty good downpour of rain, but we survived and had a really great trip.

The winds hit us about 3:00 a.m. and it was really some of the strangest winds I’ve ever experienced. You could hear them starting off in the distance and as they came closer the howling got louder and louder and louder until your tent shook violently for a moment. As quickly as they came, they were soon gone which left you wondering when the next big one would hit.

Laying there in bed listening to the storm, I wondered about how much my life feels like those winds sometimes. I can tell when busyness and stress is coming. I can hear the winds starting to howl and pick up steam and when they hit, it’s shocking and sometimes it hurts… But then the winds die down again and I wait for the next big one to hit. It’s a continuous process that over time can leave me feeling pretty beaten up.

But the winds also made me think about God… about how powerful God is, and how scary God is sometimes too. I think the winds made me think about God because even though they shook my tent pretty hard, it was still exciting to experience their power. There was a short thrill from knowing that the wind had just found me.

I don’t think I spend enough time thinking about how powerful God is. I like to think about the compassion of God, the grace of God, the love of God… but I don’t take the time to consider the awesome and raw power behind God’s character. I like to think about God’s heart being moved… but I tend to forget that God has the power to move things as well. I think that’s a chink in my theological armor. I don’t know.

But I do know this.

I’ll drive myself crazy trying to muster up enough power to survive to the point that I am left begging for God’s power to show up. Maybe that’s backwards.

Maybe I shouldn’t spend so much time running from the wind. Maybe I should spend more time running towards it.

A few more changes…

Friday, October 19th, 2007

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I have been working on the bookstore that I have set up on this site through Amazon. I now have 34 books listed that fall into seven categories: Understanding Faith, Theology, Leadership, Spirituality, Bible Study & Commentaries, Religious Fiction, and Fiction. Check it out.

A few thoughts…

Friday, October 19th, 2007

I’ve been thinking about my last post and my desire to “reconfigure” my blogging life. I’ve decided to keep this blog up with some minor tweaking. The first thing I’ve done is delete a ton of categories from my blog that I had either never spent a lot of time addressing or ones that I didn’t intend to continue to focus on. The other change is a bit more dramatic.

I think for quite some time, my blog has been a bit of a hiding place for me. Now, I know that sounds utterly ridiculous. Hiding on the internet, the most public medium available for communication. What I mean by hiding is that this has been a place for me to internally work things out and I can think of many occasions when I was actually embarrassed/worried by the fact that someone had “found” my blog. It’s hard to explain. Maybe that makes sense to some, but the bottom line is, I think I’m ready to let that go…

And in it’s place, I’d like to transition my blog into a place where I can simply share my story with the people who are a part of my church and others. This will involve actually telling them about my blog, which again, is something I have strongly avoided. For those current readers, I hope that isn’t disappointing.

My hope is to simply share my life and my story. It will continue to be a wonderful discipline for me in my life. I hope it is a blessing to someone else as well.

I am posting…

Wednesday, October 17th, 2007

I am posting tonight for a few reasons. First, I’m tired of my previous T.O post being at the top of the blog. That’s one of the minor reasons. Second, I’m posting tonight because I don’t know what to post. It’s actually how I have felt about the blog for a while now. My life has changed so much in the last six months, that I almost feel the need to start this whole thing over… But I don’t think I can bring myself to do it… but with the changes I’ve experienced in my job, etc… something different is stirring within me. Yet, when I sit down to post and I look at the categories I have setup for all my previous 500+ posts, I feel a bit constricted by what “David’s Bucket” has been about for it’s 2 1/2 years existence.

Not sure I know the answer, just trying to express the problem. Maybe I’ll recategorize stuff and simplify? I don’t know, but I need some sort of change here. Suggestions are appreciated.