Or maybe he wants 2 more pictures taken...

KEYY staff (12/06)

Some people--those who think they know Steve--would say that my boss is teasing me. They would take one look at this photo and exclaim, "He's giving you bunny ears!" But me? I know better. I know Steve's true character. I am confident he is simply expressing his heartfelt desire for...peace.


Death in Black and White: The Sequel

I had a cow today. For lunch! Remember my nemesis, Torro the steer? Well, I have now ingested a nice, juicy, round beef patty made from his tender flesh. Who's laughing now, big guy?? Ah, the sweet revenge of the carnivore.


Likeable Persons

Above, there are likely some likenesses of a few very Likeable Persons. Tim and Kristine, Kira, Nathan by name. I like Likeable Persons because they save me a lot of effort. I try to like Everyone, and generally I succeed, but it sure takes a lot of work in some cases. Likeable Persons ease my emotional work load. Likeable Persons are far from being classified as endangered species, but they are just rare enough to make them extremely special. That's why I am blessed to have had four of them visit me in the past couple weeks! How did they earn such an honored title? Well, two of them flew 1,100 miles, one drove 3 1/2 hours, and the other drove 2,000 miles to reach Provo, Utah. This makes them ready candidates. Besides that, they are all believers full of edifying speech, sincerity, and the joy of the Lord. I know quite a few Likeable People. If you're one of them--which you probably are if you're reading my lame blog--I hope you know how much I appreciate you. Thanks for your friendship! Keep up the Likeableness. (If you're not but you're dying to be, sending me gourmet chocolate and crisp $50 bills facilitates the process...)


Vacation in Utah: Try it! You'll like it!

Let me say up front: the Utah Tourism Bureau is paying me absolutely nothing for this. But they should be. So if you work for them, you may send a check or make a direct deposit to my savings account.

Here's a quiz about my state! Those who have enjoyed the pleasure of visiting or--even better!--living in Utah will do quite well; for those of you unfortunate souls who haven't--try your best!
1. Utah emcompasses A) vast deserts and salt flats B) sky-scraping mountains and forests C) narrow canyons and sheer cliffs D) all of the above
2. Utah scenery is A) amazing B) gorgeous C) breath-taking D) all of the above
3. Who should at least visit Utah at some point in their lives? A) hikers B) photographers C) anyone else who has a pulse D) all of the above

Answer "D" is correct for all three questions. And yes, there's only one right answer to each!

I had an amazing vacation during the first week of October. It was wonderful to hop in Bubbles--when she was running smoothly!--and play the tourist in my own state, seeing something new each day.

Of course, I must give credit to my fellow sight-seer, who made everything twice as enjoyable. My friend Brock flew all the way from Virginia to soak up the Utah beauty and it was my honor to be his hostess.

These pics don't do the place justice; come see for yourself!


"Name them one by one..."

My thanks, Father, for free salvation, imputed righteousness, and the promise of heaven. Thank You for sanctification--both positional and practical. Thank You for the cross, for Your Son's free-flowing blood, for the empty tomb. Thanks for the Comforter. Thank You, thank You for the privilege of serving You and the hope of suffering for You.


Lord, I have loved Your sky,
Be it said against or for me,
Have loved it clear or high
Or low and stormy,
Till I have reeled and stumbled
From looking up too much,
And fallen, and been humbled
To wear a crutch.
--"Astrometaphysical," Robert Frost
The sky! Somehow the sky is different here... It's big. Technically, it's bigger in Kansas, since the horizon is utterly flat there. Something about the skyline of the distant mountains makes the sky seem bigger here, though. "Elsewhere, the sky is the roof of the world; but here the earth is the floor of the sky." Willa Cather penned that about Nebraska, but perhaps she never saw Utah. Here, the sky is not a detail to complete the picture of the landscape; it is the defining element of the scenery. When I step outside, my eyes are often drawn immediately up. I see the clouds, piled up on top of the mountain peaks or spread out in thin wisps from horizon to horizon.

...And the sunsets here! They're unreal--night after night. One of my choice ways to relax is to walk or jog right about dusk and soak in the serene setting of the sun behind the Lake Mountains. Sometimes the colors are dramatic and breathtaking. Other times they are soft and muted, delicate. Father, You are the expert Artist!
Gazing on one of His masterpieces is humbling, like Frost wrote. It also leaves a feeling that I can only describe as longing.

I've been listening to an Andrew Peterson CD a lot lately... He sings, "Like a golden sky on a summer eve/Your heart is tugging at your sleeve/And you cannot say why.../There must be more..." And there is more! Much more. And that's it: heaven. Could it be that in my heart of hearts, I feel a fascination with the sky because it is the veil between me and my true home? To quote AP again: "We are wandering/In a foreign land/We are children of the promise of the faith/And I long to find it/Can you feel it too?/That the sun that's shining/Is a shadow of the truth..." Heaven! It's not just the place I'll end up when I die; it's my home (Hebrews 11:13-16). And it's real--more real than this earth, truth be told. Heaven!

"For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet of God; and the dead in Christ shall rise first. Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus we shall always be with the Lord" (I Thess. 4:16-17). To the believer, the sky is more than a layer of gases around the earth. It is a curtain that could be torn open at any moment, revealing his Savior. That is why, I conclude, I feel more sensitive toward the reality of heaven here in big sky country. Amen. Come, Lord Jesus!


Kidding around...

Here are my buddies in the back yard...
Top: Nannette--goat with an attitude!

Middle: Cisco Kid--going to great lengths to get the last of the yummy grain.
Bottom: Buckwheat--hamming it up for the camera.

What cuties!
These are some of the Chinese kiddos who I've been teaching on Friday evenings at Provo Bible Church.


The Adventures of a Station-Sitter

Here I am in the control room at KEYY!

Living at a radio station means rarely is there a dull moment. Case in point... I was staying here alone for several days while the Barsuhns took a vacation. It was a fairly uneventful week until this morning when I woke up at 6:12 to a frightening BEEP-beep-BEEP-beep. Too loud to be my alarm clock. It took me a moment to comprehend what was going on. This place has more alarms rigged up than a penitentiary: one for "dead air," another for the Emergency Alert System and Amber Alert; and then there's the motion sensors, and of course the fire alarm and the carbon monoxide alarm--even one signaling mail has been deposited in the box outside--although it hasn't been working lately. But the beeping I heard was none of these; it was the dreaded Intruder Alarm, set off when someone enters the building without disarming the security system. An unknown person was in the radio station and I alone was there to defend it. Of course I could've investigated, or at least called out to ask who was there. But those very logical options seemed like very illogical death-wishes at the moment. So...I did the less-than-heroic thing and stayed in my room with the door locked and tremulously dialed Chris on my cell phone. I woke him up. "The intruder alarm went off... I don't know who's here..." I tried to sound very ho-hum about it all but really I meant: "HELP! Save me from the axe murder standing outside my door!" and I think Chris read my mind. He hurried over from his home a few blocks away. I was more than ready to let him be the hero. As I waited, I contemplated how best to respond if the intruder were to break into my bedroom: stand and fight with my curling iron? Or fall at his feet and plead for mercy? Thankfully, I didn't have to decide. Turns out, the "intruder" was just the local pastor who comes once a week to record his messages that are later played on the air. He didn't know that the switch to disarm the security system had been moved and thus he was unable to prevent the hair-raising ordeal for me. What possessed him in the first place to record his sermon at the unearthly hour of 6:00 on a Saturday morning is beyond me. I am simply grateful for the following: locks on doors, cell phones, curling irons, and Reader's Digest-type everyday heroes (you're the best, Chris!).


Death in Black & White

What a great time to start a blog! There's nothing like a near-death experience to get one feeling like he's got a story to tell. I had a close brush with Death this very afternoon, or at least his first cousins Bodily Injury and Intense Pain. They came in the form of a Holstein steer named Torro. Now, in Torro's defense, he is NOT mean; he IS waaaaay overly friendly--but the difference between these adjectives becomes very slight when you weigh 800 solid pounds and possess two sharp horns. I bottle-fed him and his brother, Outback, last summer when they were cute little calves with knobby legs and soft brown eyes. Outback--may he rest in peace--bit the dust a few months ago, presumably from swallowing a foreign object that had blown into the field. Which is why today, when I saw Torro with his head stuck in a trash can full of styrofoam packing peanuts at the other side of the field surrounding the radio tower, I raced to his rescue. First I made necessary precautions: I put hay in the rack to keep the beast occupied; I armed myself with a 3-foot metal pipe; I said a fervent prayer. Then I spent probably ten minutes picking up small pieces of the lethal white stuff (who dumps two Rubbermaids of styrofoam over an 8-foot fence into a pasture with animals in it?). I was just headed back across the field with the trash in tow, when the steer came lumbering over to meet me. He had lost interest in the hay and wanted to "play," i.e. shove me around with his horned head. I walked backwards, tripping over cowpies and the three pygmy goats, keeping the trash cans between the steer and me with my left hand and warding him off with the pipe in my right. Several times I thought he was going to bust the cans when he took a running start at me, but blessed be Rubbermaid for their sturdy products. Once I poked him in the eyeball with the pipe. He bellowed, turned away, blinked a few times... and ran right back for more. I stumbled backwards across that field for what seemed like a very long time, praying the whole way. At last I made it to the safety of the chest-high electric fence which keeps him out of certain portions of the field. After a few moments of deep breathing and taking inventory of my appendages, I promptly got the hose and sprayed him right in the face. Ha! Take that, you animal, you beef with legs to be butchered in a 6 weeks! He bellowed again and ran off. I win. Expense: shoes and pants smeared with manure, and dignity all but lost. Those nice city-folk in their condos lining two sides of the field had something to talk about over supper.