Tending to My Own Garden

This piece from Mary DeTurris Poust (and her follow-up thoughts) has been making the rounds. It’s hit a real chord (or nerve, or home-run) with many, and produced a great deal of commentary that I find both timely and helpful. And it’s reminded me of my own frustrations over the question of how to respond to the shepherding deficiencies we see all [Read More…]

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Palate Cleansing with Cantus

After last week’s excitement, I feel like I could do with a bit of non-controversy. Something calming. Something straight-forward. Something like this: That’s Cantus, a Minneapolis-based, nine-member vocal group described by some as “the premiere men’s vocal ensemble in the United States.” I don’t know how to make a judgement on that particular claim — does [Read More…]

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REMINDER: “The Hollow Crown” Starts Tonight!

At last! Tonight at 9PM (check your local listings), PBS’ “Great Performances” will unleash the first part of the Beeb’s Sam Mendes-produced “The Hollow Crown.” Described as “a lavish new series of filmed adaptations of four of Shakespeare’s most gripping history plays; Richard II, Henry IV (Part 1), Henry IV (Part 2), and Henry V,” it is an event over which I have been obsessing ever [Read More…]

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The Laughter of Learning

Homeschooling a whole mess of boys is a huge challenge. And I say this knowing full-well that I can only grasp the reality of that statement tangentially; my beloved, patient wife bears the real brunt of its truth. Something that makes it measurably easier, however, is the willingness of the older boys to help their [Read More…]

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Peter Bellerby, Globemaker

I’m fascinated by people who make things with their hands. Probably because I’m as bad at creating things with my hands as anyone ever, so successful hand-crafters seem like gods to me. Enter the godlike Peter Bellerby — a Londoner who really, really wanted to give his father a globe for his 80th birthday, but just couldn’t find [Read More…]

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Leonard Cohen’s “Show Me The Place”

Thanks to Steven Greydanus’ musings on this Fred Stobaugh piece from a few weeks ago, I’ve been listening to Leonard Cohen’s “Show Me The Place” almost non-stop ever since. I love it. Absolutely love it. Though I’m not entirely sure why I love it so. Musically, it’s pretty straightforward (aka, plain). And I’m not at all sure what [Read More…]

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The Family That Views Together…

View image | gettyimages.com The weekend was insane. Again. Some day soon, I’ll come to the realization that all weekends spent with a family of seven boys are insane, but today is not that day. One upside of the aforementioned-and-ongoing insanity, however, is that it brings the highlight of the weekend into sharp-and-grateful relief: Watching [Read More…]

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Perlman and Zukerman Play Handel and Halvorsen

This is definitely one of those “made in Heaven” matches; on both counts, actually. Wonderful, wonderful stuff. (Also, a very nostalgic piece for me. I played it a great deal during my piano-lesson days, though perhaps not quite this well. And yes, legalists, I didn’t play the Handel-Halverson version, because that title refers to the [Read More…]

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And May Christ Be In Our Midst

Today is a day of powerful, overwhelming emotions for many of us — a day when words feel hopelessly inadequate. For me, that means today is a day for music. (For as long as I can remember, music has helped to guide me through moments just like this, when my thoughts and the words I [Read More…]

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“Frame by Frame” — PBS Studies the Art of Stop Motion

The art of stop-motion has fascinated me for nearly as long as I can remember. I think it has something to do with the enormous amount of patience required — a trait that I greatly respect, but sorely lack. As my long-time friend and college roommate used to say, “Yeah, yeah, patience! How long will that take?” (Interestingly and perhaps [Read More…]

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