Archive for August, 2009

     Life lately has consisted of class (for Dave), job hunting (for me), gym going, church attending, making short trips to whole foods for one item that turn into $50 spending sprees, talks about spending less, more job hunting, and making friends. Last night we went over to a friend’s house and another friend made us sushi. He had learned how to make it when he lived in Japan for a year, and it was sooo good. I’ve never been a huge sushi eater (only tried it a couple of times ) but this was really good. He used salmon in some, and tofu and crab in the others. I may even have him teach me so I can make it myself.

The job search has been going strong for the last two weeks or so. I’ve applied and sent resumes to over 20 jobs, everything from a financial aid officer at Duke, to writing elementary reading curriculum. It is very frustrating but I am learning alot about patience, faith, and how much I hate craigslist. All we need to learn now is where to find the money tree.

It is such a great feeling to be in a university town. Not only for the rich culture of knowledge and tradition, but, more importantly, for the amenities. The many conveniences that make our lives just that little bit better.


Library – We cancelled our netflix account and now use the library for all movies and tv shows we want to see. AND you get to take out as many as three at a time. Beat that blockbuster.

Food – We’ve already been to one free dinner on campus and as I write Dave is at another : ) Well, really he’s at a ‘retreat’ for the anglican house of studies, but he gets free brunch. And that’s definately something to write home about.  

Gym – Dave gets this for free and we only had to pay a small price for me to have a year-long membership. Good good.

Other perks include a good public transportation system, beautiful scenery (including Duke gardens), and seminary social gatherings… always a good time. I feel that over the next three years, the spiritual gift of accepting hospitality (which we all know is needed as much as its giving in this day and age), will be greatly nurtured within us : ) Thank you divinity school.  

Yesterday, as we were leaving  the gym, we stumbled upon a field hockey game. The duke team were playing Michigan state. It was so fun to watch and brought back many memories of the old days back in England. I recalled our old team uniform which consisted of  bright red rugby jerseys that were always three sizes to big, bright red knee highs and chunky black soccer cleats. As if that wasn’t enough, we were made to wear kneelength navy blue pleated skirts complete with matching ‘pants’ (underwear) that made you feel like you were running around the field in a diaper. Our reward for being made to wear such hideous outfits was a large wooden stick and permission to use it in any way we saw fit to get the ball down the field and into the net. The game was intense people.  During one away game, one of my team mates found herself standing too close to the opposition and got her cheek sliced open by the stick. She was  rushed off the field and whisked to hospital where she had multiple stiches and before we could say as much as  “did that really just happen?”, we were shoved back on the field with our coach yelling at us to move on and score some (insert favorite curse word here) goals.

As horrific as it sounds it was actually a very fun game and I enjoyed it very much. We played in PE and I played on the school team too because I just couldn’t get enough. It rained during about 80% of the matches, but hey, that’s England.

I turned these simple ingredients into this loaf of banana bread yesterday as we had a bunch of overly-ripe bananas sitting around.

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look closelyI’m beginning to worry about Milton, I think he’s an addict…Look Closely
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One week down…

My classes for the Fall semester:

Church History (Early/Medieval) – Warren Smith

Introduction to Old Testament Interpretation- Stephen Chapman

Introduction to Christian Spirituality- Lauren Winner

Sexuality: Bible, Church, and Controversy- Mary McClintock Fulkerson/Sam Wells

Spiritual Formation Group

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With moving away comes a lot of nostalgia. We often think about all of our friends back in good ol’ Texas and the good times we shared. Well, recently we’ve been thinking about our group of friends that we did liturgy with on Sunday nights.

We hung out often, what with Sunday nights and pub nights and just being in each others business! We loved it, we love them. They are such a warm group of people, so welcoming, so edifying. Paul, Sean, Mel, Steph, and Daniel… we miss you cats.

Melissa sent me this photo of our last night together and I just had to post it; it truly shows the tight bond we all felt with each other.


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Seriously though guys. We think of you all the time. We’re thinking of Ananda and her immenent arrival. We wish we could be there to wait with you, but we can’t wait to see her in December! Miss you all.

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First Day of Divinity School

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Milton waits for Dave’s return.

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Whirlwind weekend

This past weekend seemed like somewhat of a whirlwind. Dave went to his last day of orientation on friday while I cleaned house like a mad woman. Then we drove to Raleigh to pick Peter, Megan, and Rebecca up from the airport who came in town for a family wedding. We then returned to Durham, had lunch, and showed them around town a little. Then it was back to the house to get ready for the rehearsal dinner. Once we were all dolled up we jumped in the car and drove to Winston Salem, about an hour and a half away.

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We had a really fun time sitting at the ‘cousin’ table, eating barbecue and catching up with everyone! We had even more fun on the way home at 11pm when one of us randomly busted out with “Proud to be an American”, which lead to the five of us singing the song in its entirety at the top of our lungs. The next day Bill, Karen, and Celeste came over to see our house and Duke campus. We also ate this which I made the day before… buttercake with fresh lemon buttercream…. mmmmm

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After they left, we got dolled up for a second time and jumped back in the car to make our second journey to Winston Salem for the wedding and reception. There were quite a few interesting folks there including (but not limited to) a man who looked exactly like a stereotypical movie Jesus, a man with a supreme handlebar mustache, and two ring-bearing dogs. Great times, great memories.

We were all so tired from all of the driving and getting dolled up that we decided to leave the reception early and continue the festivities at our house. We said goodbye to everyone and drove back to Durham. Here’s what you get when you mix Klines, wine, beer, exhaustion, and camera timers…


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Lion King (Circle of Life)

It was a very sad goodbye when we took them to the airport as Rebecca is going off to college in Savannah and Peter and Megan are moving to Scotland for a year : ( But we had a great last weekend together for a while. After dropping them off we headed to a newcomer’s lunch at the pastor’s house of All Saint’s AMIA church. We had a wonderful time and both feel confident that this is a community we would like to invest in. He is good and faithful, and is taking care of us! Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers, they are much appreciated : )

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A project…

As Dave said in our last post, he finished his dissertation last week and has now sent it off to Scotland! We celebrated by having a feast on Saturday night….

Shepherd’s pie (his choice)

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And apple crumble and ice cream for dessert.




 I’ve explained to Dave time and time again that Shepherd’s pie is a poor man’s food, something that english people created years ago when they either had nothing to cook, or couldn’t afford to buy anything. So they took leftover meat and whatever else was lying around and threw it all together, and viola! But, he still seems to think it’s one of the best meals he’s ever tasted so who am I to change his mind?????? We all win; Dave thinks he’s getting the creme de la creme of dinner entrees, and I get to throw together a hodge podge of ingredients and call it a dish : )  

We also bought a bike last week. Dave found it in a pawn shop for a REALLY good price, he can ride it to the bus stop and catch a bus to campus. We really can make this one-car deal work.

On Sunday we attended All Saints church. It is part of the AMIA (Anglican Mission in America) and is located between Durham and Chapel Hill. We really liked what we experienced there and the people were very friendly. It was strange, for both of us, to be attending a traditional ‘church service’ in a ‘church building’ after so many years of house church. It’s also strange to be the visitors that nobody really knows. As far back as I can remember I’ve either been a regular (the one approaching the visitors to try and make them feel welcomed), or the arriving family of the new pastor, in which case everyone knows of you, is expecting you, and therefore stares at you for the entire length of the service to see how holy you are. Just kidding, of course I don’t have any of those lowly, stereotypical PK issues. All that to say, we look forward to going back and getting more involved.

Orientation starts tomorrow for Dave. I’m in the midst of craigslist and filling out applications in search of a job. Will keep you posted on that. I also can’t put The Time Traveler’s Wife down, so that doesn’t help with the job search.

We did some yard work yesterday, and other than the 30 mosquito bites I came away with, I found it very enjoyable! We trimmed back a large portion of the bushes at the front of the house and I’m hoping to plant some flowers down at the bottom of the yard. Our yard doesn’t seem to fit in with those surrounding it. If you drive down our street you see houses with colorful and lively flower beds, beautiful rose gardens, ivy crawling up the sides of houses, shapely bushes adorning the fronts of houses, and luscious grass surrounding cobble pathways leading to freshly painted front doors…

Then you arrive at our house.

Dead bushes envelop the steps up from the street on either side. The path looks like someone threw a pile of bricks onto the ground then sunk them into the earth wherever they landed. There are no flowers, no color, nothing. One can vaguely recognize the outline of a house hidden by several huge and unruly bushes. The front door and a lovely porch swing are masked from sight and the grass grows in spontaneous, random patches. I can’t bear the thought of people thinking we caused this overgrown, dying forest. Not that I give a flip about The Jones’, I just want it to look pretty : ) Hence; YARDWORK.

P.S. Go see District 9… we saw it yesterday and thought it was a GREAT movie, we recommend it. Love to all : )

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It’s been seven months. I met Mr. MacMillan in Glasgow in February; we had coffee and an interview at his home, and then he treated me to lunch at a restaurant in downtown Glasgow. I’ve listened to the piece (which is about 80 minutes long) probably fifty times in its entirety over the last several months, and have almost memorized the score. Writing about the piece has been inspiring, educating, frustrating, and oftentimes tedious. It is a magnificent piece of music. I hope to make it up to Boston in January to see the U.S. premier of the piece, and it is rumored that the composer is coming to Duke in 2011. It was like saying good-by to a family member when I had to send this  back to Boosey & Hawkes (it was on loan as it is  not released to the public yet):


My dissertation is finished and ready to be shipped off to St Andrews, first thing Monday morning. I’m going to have this tonight to celebrate:


This morning Han and I went to the farmers market. This time we had cash. And this time we bought butternut squash, among others.


Finally, last night we did what you would expect of any person who has just finished his dissertation on an obscure and esoteric modern composer and a Brit who grew up playing field hockey: we went to a baseball game. Go Bulls.



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