And I’ve been so busy dismantling it that I haven’t had time to post any pictures. But, here are some things I’ve learned:

NEVER shine a black light behind a toilet before cleaning the area.

The Swiffer extender thingy has multiple uses. It is likely that I will go through at least three boxes of disposable duster heads before the house is clean.

Mr. Clean Magic Erasers take do not completely erase stensils…but they do dim them. It is likely that I will go through multiple boxes of those as well.

I am lousy at making color choices under pressure.

Carpet is the easiest thing in the world to remove.

Carpet glue is not the easiest thing in the world to remove.

My dad is a perfectionist when it comes to making things right in my home. He is awesome and I will not share him.

My mom has an amazing gift for not getting completely overwhelmed by the to do list and keeps things organized when the list seems to be growing instead of shrinking. I will not share her either.

Arched windows are beautiful. However, they are a pain when it comes to window treatments.

I have discovered that my neighbors on one side have a drum set and like to loudly and passionately discuss politics in their lanai (that’s what we call the pool area). This is WAY better than my apartment neighbors who smoke and yell at each other and their toddler all. day. long.

Sitting in my lanai with my feet up, watching the sun set beyond my pool is the best thing ever.

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It’s like watching a train wreck…

No, I’m not talking about my new house. Though that is why I haven’t posted all week. The pictures are still on my camera. And I’m working on my work laptop in an ambulance. So…no house pictures.

Instead, we shall talk about one of my favorite pet peeves – the church marquee sign. I have a friend who refuses to set foot inside a church with a marquee sign. I think she’s brilliant. The minute one of those signs goes up, the IQ of the congregation seems to plummet. Don’t even get me started on the new LED church signs. I DO NOT think that when Jesus said “let your light shine before men” He meant, RETINAL BURNS FOR EVERYONE!!

Anyway, over the last few weeks I have noticed something about church signs; I can’t, not look at them. My eyes automatically go right to them. And then I want to slam my head against the dash of my car.

I pass four church signs on my commute. I believe they come from four different denominations ranging from liberal to conservative. I have seen some doozies.

Let me share a few. Because, seriously; someone needs to tell me if I should laugh or cry.

“Be a Lego in God’s hand” I’m guessing this means I’m supposed to be useful. Personally, I would have put “Be a Lego under Satan’s foot.” I think that has a better ring to it.

“Duty calls! Enlist in missions!” Because being a missionary out of duty rather than passion is sooooo healthy.

“Unlike Autumn, God never leaves.” I think that was supposed to be punny??

My personal favorite was the one that had been vandalized. The letters had been rearranged to say…something the church didn’t intend. I admit it. I laughed.

The fact of the matter is, you cannot sum up God in three or four words. To make an attempt is to put Him in a box. Maybe that’s why so many don’t take the church seriously anymore. We’ve attempted to define God in short, catchy sayings. And He is so much more than what can fit on a marquee sign.

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I no longer support the death penalty

Does this mean I can’t be a conservative anymore??

I’ve been battling this decision for two years. What God has been showing me about grace does not really make room for the death penalty. But what I’ve lived and what I have seen…I want the “justice” of ending the life of someone that takes a life. Deep down inside. That’s what I want.

You can do the research yourself. The truth is, states without the death penalty have lower homicide rates than those with. There is no evidence that the death penalty causes anyone not to take a life – in fact, it appears that homicides increase shortly after executions. And let’s not start on the number of people sentenced to die who have later been found innocent.

But let’s get spiritual.

First the OT Law. There we find multiple sins worthy of death. And thus, especially for homicide, many Christians say “It is in the Bible. We have to do it.” But, what did Jesus say? In Matthew 5 He shows us how we are to treat our enemies. He dismantles the idea of “an eye for an eye” which is the only purpose for the death penalty.

Those in corrections will tell you that there are three reasons for the death penalty. Retribution, deterrence, and incapacitation. Evidence has proven that there is little to no deterrent affect to capital punishment. Life in prison without parole is just as effective at incapacitation as an execution. Which leaves retribution. Good, old fashioned vengeance. Jesus said that this is not to be a motivator for the Believer. Also, let’s not forget that part where the law was meant to show us our need of the cross, not how we are supposed to function every day.

Second (and last) is the emotion in the pit of my stomach when I say I’m willing to let killers live. What is that emotion that boils up? Is it a need for justice? No. Is it disgust at the crime? No. It is pure, unadulterated hate and anger. It is the ugliest emotion I could ever conjure. And it comes up every time I think about the death penalty not being there for certain people and crimes.

Oh, I want to put people to death for their crimes. I really do. But the emotions that want that – they are not of God. They are not fueled by His grace. They are not a reflection of His Son. For me, that is where this debate ends. That is why I can no longer support the death penalty.

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Counting down…

One week from today (as I’m writing this today, not as you’re reading this today) I’ll be a home owner. That’s two more shifts. And (hopefully) five more sch0ol assignments.

I’m going a little crazy.

Half of me is super, super excited to own a house. A HOUSE! Not a condo. A yard. A garage. A POOL!!!!

The other half of me is wanting to rock in a corner and mutter “what have I done??” I keep having to tell that half that my mortgage will be less than my rent – way less than my rent. Even with insurance and HOA added on, it is still less than my rent. Sometimes that helps that half of me uncurl from the corner and go look at pinterest.

I’ve never had much interest in pinterest (ha!). It has been useful for organizing articles and such, but to just scan the boards? Nah. Ain’t nobody got time for that.

Unless one is buying a house that has not been updated since 1999. Then it is a mad rush to PIN ALL THE THINGS!!. I kid you not, I have a board for every room. Even the pantry.

The sellers that were once a pain in my…left eyelid, have turned out to be rather generous. I now believe that the real pain has been the seller’s realator. The sellers were in town over the weekend to retrieve some belongings from the house and discovered that the pool filter was broken and some of the window screens were torn. Those have now been replaced. If I had mentioned them to the realtor, the response would have been something along the lines of “You should be happy you are getting windows!” Yeah. There might be a bad review of him popping up on the internet in a few months.

Speaking of my left eyelid. It is still twitching. I’ve increased my banana intake to nearly two a day. I think we can rule out a nutritional imbalance… I have a three week break from school that starts two days after I close on the house. I’m hoping that between the happy endorphins of house rehabbing and no studying, the twitch will go bye-bye. If it doesn’t, I might cry.


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Dear pastors,

Yesterday I was on the scene of a DOA. An elderly woman had passed away in the home that she shared with her daughter and granddaughter. They were not expecting to find her deceased when they returned from a nice day at the strawberry festival.

While I was doing my thing and the Sherri’s deputies were doing their thing; family, friends, and their pastor were gathering in the front yard. The funeral home was contacted and was on their way. A friend walked up to one of the deputies and asked him a question. When he had given a satisfactory answer, he advised that the granddaughter (probably under eight years old and clearly upset) be taken for a walk when the funeral home arrived. We all agreed that the little one did not need to have the removal of her grandmother’s body imprinted on her little mind.

The friend carried the advice to the handful of people standing at the edge of the yard.

I am unhappy to report that the pastor advised against following the deputy’s instructions. In his opinion, seeing the body removed from the home was part of the closure process.

No! A thousand times, no!

I saw my dead uncle when I was eleven. He was not in a coffin. He had not been prepared by a funeral home. I watched the funeral home take his body out of my home. Those images are forever etched on my memory. No child needs those images in their head. 

(I would just like to throw in here that I do not believe that I was damaged by what I saw – but I was already showing a proclivity to EMS. My brain was already wired differently than the average child’s brain.)

So pastors, when someone advises that a child should be removed from a situation, remove them. It is highly likely that they are speaking from experience. The child can get closure during the funeral when their loved one is represented in a way that will bring smiles.


A medic who is still a little bit angry

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Smarter than a Doc

I ran my first boating accident this week. An airboat full of senior citizens overturned. None of them were wearing life jackets. There were bodies everywhere.
No there weren’t. It was rather boring really. No one died (yay!), no one earned a helicopter ride. There was just a bunch of soaking wet, angry seniors with minor complaints.
My patient was a gentleman who had struck a rubber coated chain on the way out of the boat. The chain had caught him in the fleshy part of the side between the bottom rib and the top of the hip. It produced an amazing area of swelling. He’d basically grown an extra love handle.
I saw his injury and was pretty sure that it wasn’t going to kill him. However, I was also pretty sure that he needed a hospital with a good surgeon, just in case. So I chose to take him to a hospital about thirty miles from the accident scene.
When I called in my report, the nurse on the other end of the line wanted to know if I was calling a trauma alert. I was not. There was no blood in the swelling, Hus belly was nice and soft, his lungs were fine, his vitals were fine. He was in pain, but he was fine.
When we got to the hospital, the nurse took one look at the swelling and ran for the doctor. I approached them an assured them that the patient was completely stable and that there was no sign of bleeding in the swelling or abdomen. They didn’t care.
The doctor ran for the surgeon who was sitting about fifteen feet from my patient. I watched as he observed the swelling from his seat. He listened to the doctor’s opinion. Then he shook his head. “That’s just localized external swelling. That is not caused by blood or intestines. His blood pressure is fine. He’s fine.”
I did a little happy dance on the inside.
I love it when I’m smarter than the doc.

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someone. please. save. me.

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