Thursday, January 28, 2010

Theology Thursday - Peace in Troubled Times

(Tricia here:  Check out this little devotion book from author William Moss.  Who couldn't use a little peace, benefit from taking some time out to focus on peace in our lives?  I like how this book is simple, so you can get right down to applying the principles.  Got me thinking about how contradictory it is to add chaos to your life, trying to get through another long study on peace and quiet in your life.  With simple thoughts and plenty of room for notes, this would be a good book to get you started on the practice of inner peace.)


Q & A with William Moss, author of
Finding Inner Peace During Troubled Times

(To listen to an interview with William Moss, visit www.ureadbooks.com/moss


Q: Our world is characterized by war, violence, and conflict, and many of us experience that conflict in our inner beings. What would you say to those who long for inner peace but wonder if it is possible to find?

A: I believe God wants us to find peace and will show us the way, if we are willing to accept it. But for many of us, the peace of God is elusive, and we are not sure how to accept it. How do we search for this peace? Should we isolate ourselves from the world around us by withdrawing and adopting an inward focus, that we might gain that peace for ourselves? Though this seems the obvious answer, I believe those who are in Christ should avoid the kind of self focus and withdrawal that would preclude us from being involved in the solutions of the many problems that confront us. Instead, we search for inner peace because we want to share it, that we may be able to help others. Inner peace, like life, is a gift from God that is for His glory—and it is meant to be shared.

Q: If God wants us to find peace, why is it so rare to meet someone who has truly found it?

A: Obviously, there are many difficulties, distractions, and hardships that stand in the way of our inner peace.
As Paul said to the Galatians, “So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law of Moses.”

Paul says, “The acts of the sinful nature are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like.”

Today there are some distractions Paul did not include such as: worry, self-preservation, hunger, lack of money, arrogance, competitiveness, criticism, and illness, to name a few. It is these distractions—whether due to circumstances or the attitudes of our hearts—that stand between us and the inner peace we crave.


Q: Who is the source of our inner peace?

A: The Bible clearly tells us, time and again, that Jesus Christ Himself is the source of that peace. In Romans Paul says, “Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Again in Ephesians, Paul says, “For He Himself is our peace, who has made the two one and destroyed the barrier, the dividing wall of hostility.” In Colossians, we read, “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace.” And consider the words of Jesus, the Prince of Peace, found in the book of John: “I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have peace. In this world, you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

Jesus gives peace to every believer. But so often, we allow the distractions of our days and our choices to pursue sin instead of the character of Christ to prevent us from accepting that peace.

Q: Some Christians have been wary of the art of Christian meditation because they have associated the word “meditation” with Eastern religions. Why is meditation so vital to our search for inner peace?

A: We live in a strange and changing world shaped by banking collapses, recessions, wars, politics, famine, hurricanes, pollution, and diverse economies and demographics. How does this changing, strange world affect our daily decisions? Where does God fit into all of this? One of our biggest hurdles to hearing God’s voice is the fact that we simply are not listening.

Many people wrongly believe that Eastern religions have the monopoly on “meditation.” The truth is that meditating on scripture was a spiritual discipline valued by the early church fathers, and it is a practice the church desperately needs to return to today. Whereas the aim of eastern meditation is to focus on nothing (in effect, emptying the mind), Christian meditation is about filling the mind—focusing on Holy Scripture and Christ. With the constant stream of media, noise, commitments, conflicts, and other distractions, you will not likely find times of quiet, stillness, and spiritual reflection unless you are intentional, unless you pursue meditation as a discipline. Through prayer and meditation we can transcend all the distractions and difficulties of our days if we live by the Spirit and put God’s love and presence first.

Q: What role does the Holy Spirit play in our search for inner peace?

A: God’s Spirit is within us constantly. As we read in John, “We know that we live in Him and He in us because He has given us His Spirit.” Therefore, because God is in Jesus, Jesus is in you, and you are in God. The Holy Spirit dwells in you at all times, and it is the Holy Spirit that connects you to Christ and to God, the power source that brings inner peace. Prayer and Christian meditation takes on a completely different quality when we realize that God knows us intimately from within. And God is love; within God’s love are the seeds for inner peace. When God comforts and encourages our souls through His love and when we share that love with others, He is guiding us along the path that leads to inner peace.

Q: Because the practice of Christian meditation has been neglected for so long, many Christians aren’t sure how to begin. Can you offer an example to get them started?

A: Start prayer and meditation by finding a quiet comfortable place, by closing your eyes, by breathing deeply until you are completely relaxed. Quietly and slowly open your heart and mind to a loving God whose Spirit is dwelling within you.

Breathe in love, breathe out anger.

Breathe in peace, breathe out despair.

Relax: let God’s love into your heart.

Be calm. Be at peace. Take more deep breaths, and feel the stress, anxiety and fear drain from your bodies.

This exercise will prepare you to listen to God’s voice as you concentrate on a scripture passage and to respond in prayer.

Q: What is the most important message you want to communicate in Finding Inner Peace During Troubled Times?

A: If we seek inner peace we will find it. In the book of John, Jesus says “And I will do whatever you ask in My name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask Me for anything in My name, and I will do it.” So many people don’t experience inner peace because they haven’t truly sought it. My hope is that through reading this book, people will commit themselves to that search for inner peace and share this peace to the glory of God.


Finding Inner Peace During Troubled Times by William Moss
The Barnabas Agency December 2009
ISBN: 978-0-578-04244-2/64 pages/softcover/$5.99
www.WilliamMoss.org
http://store.believerspress.com/shop/finding-inner-peace-during-troubled-times/

Monday, January 25, 2010

Super Dee Dooper

Why is it that the two times the (Indianapolis) Colts get into the Super Bowl, the Super Bowl logo is primarily orange? 

Look at all the lovely logos the NFL has had in the past (go on, look!) - and the two that are mostly orange are....Super Bowls XLI and XLIV. 

Is it the Miami connection?  The Orange Bowl?  If they are going to use Miami Dolphin colors, why not some lovely turquoise or teal or whatever color that is? 
However, I would much rather deal with orange splattered on my blue and white merchandise than watch someone else play next week.

Rock on and GO COLTS!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thursday Theatrics

(I am thinking maybe this could be the start of something.  Three out of the four people living in this house are drama queens, everyone but me seems to have some kind of alliteration day-of-the-week thing going on in their blog, so why not, right?)

Tonight I am in the kitchen decorating my Bigger Better Blue Friday cupcakes and the girls call from the other room, "When we come in the kitchen, take our picture!"  "O...kay...."  "Is the camera ready, Mom?"  And this comes walking around the corner:

That is one strong chick!

Of course, then they had to reverse it:



(Don't tell the girls I posted pictures of them in their pajamas!)
(Oh, and do you like where the dogs tore up the floor?)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Pray for Jessie

The youngest daughter of my dad's cousin Steve went into a coma Saturday night.  It was very unexpected and they are just torn up about it.  Please take a moment from your busy day to read about Jessie and say a prayer for her and Steve and the family.  Thank you.

http://jessieupdates-steve.blogspot.com/

The Rocks Cry Out

A whole host of people and companies have jumped on the Haiti bandwagon - which is great that they are helping, hopefully for altruistic and not selfish reasons - but please use caution and give to a reputable organization with experience in Haiti.  Jim and I have supported a child in Haiti for many years through Lifeline Christian Mission (www.lifeline.org).  I wanted to share with you this update from one of the founders.



January 19, 2010

Gretchen DeVoe (Lifeline Administrator & Co-founder) has been in Lifeline's Haitian headquarters at Grand Goave through this entire earthquake experience. Gretchen, Bob DeVoe and Bobby & Lakey Curlee are ministering to the Haitian people and coordinating relief efforts in Grand Goave and other Lifeline communities.

The following update was sent by Gretchen this afternoon:

The Rocks Cry Out!

Today as I was thinking about all that has happened, the scripture came to mind that tells us that even if God's people remain silent and fail to proclaim His name, the rocks will cry out! (paraphrased).

Never had I experienced an earthquake. I think we had a small one in Ohio a few years ago and you just felt a little shaking, but no big deal! I vividly remember what happened last Tuesday, day 1. I was starting to leave my computer desk when I heard a loud noise that sounded like the box truck or tractor was right outside the window. At first I thought it had hit the house. But it was only seconds before I knew it was an earthquake. I was thrown sideways and up the ledge into the small dining nook with the kitchen. It wasn't until 6 days later that I discovered an abrasion on my elbow; such a minor injury, but I'm just sharing this to help paint a picture of how consumed we were with what was happening. Many of the women commented that they could tell the direction from which the quake traveled. We were shaken sideways and everything fell over in the houses. The lockers in the big dorm fell over and the gals who were in their dorms at the time said the bunk beds shook horribly.

I recall yelling for the women's team to get out of the house. We ran into the field and had all the women get with their groups and stay there on the ground. And they didn't need told to pray! The initial quake lasted for probably a minute or two but the aftershocks came constantly, one right after the other. I have learned from Dr. Bill Rutherford and others who have lived in California and experienced quakes before that they never heard the aftershocks coming. I can tell you WE HEAR THEM COMING here. The rocks rumble beneath the ground and then the shock hits and the buildings tremble. You also feel it rumbling underneath you off and on all the time as the earth is shifting and settling. The sensation is akin to walking on a ship. But in all of this, what I want to point out, is that the rocks are literally crying out! And they testify to the power of our awesome God.

Bob DeVoe, Lifeline Founder & President, is in Haiti

Bob arrived safely this afternoon after a two long days of flying first to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and then hitching a ride in a private jet to Port au Prince.

On his way to Grand Goave he stopped at our Children's Home in Carre Four at Mahotiere and the children are fine but the two-story Lifeline school that includes high school is gone and a home fell into the church. Bob also stopped at Leogane, which is basically totally devastated. I'll leave it to Bob to update you later on what he has witnessed and experienced.

Food Relief

Here in Grand Goave it is time to begin food and housing relief. For the most part people have been paralyzed because of fear and no homes to return to. I briefly met this morning with one of the mayors and another official and we are developing a food distribution plan. Bob will help us get a rebuilding plan established.

There are other centers here in town where people naturally migrated to because they have wide open, outdoor space. We think there are 4 or 5 of these around Grand Goave.

The plan, as it stands now, is to develop a community committee and we will meet tomorrow morning to begin final arrangements for distributing the Kids Against Hunger (KAH) food.

Each refuge center will have a name and the people there will be identified by a colored card representing that center. The plan is to deliver the food to each of these locations simultaneously and distribute simultaneously at a given hour to avoid people going to more than one location to get food.

The quantity of KAH food we have on hand is about 10 pallets or 150,000 meals. But we have 2 containers in port that we think we'll be getting soon. Those 2 containers will feed 600,000 meals.

Pastors of the community will be part of the "committee" or leadership of each center in their area. When it comes time to distribute the food, there will be prayers and singing. Then the head of each family will be given the same amount of food, regardless of size of family and they will have to make that sufficient until the next distribution. We believe we should distribute 3 times a week giving enough food to last for about 2 days.

Clean-up & Housing Relief

The next plan is to tackle the job of clean up and rebuilding. The mayor is in agreement that the people themselves have to clean up their own rubble or recruit family and friends to help. After everything is cleaned up and out of the way, rebuilding or a total new house will be constructed. Again this will be done by zone.

We are asking the officials to try to have the government dedicate some plots of land where multiple homes can be built in the same area. Sort of like the Petit Paradise area where so many Lifeline homes have been constructed. (Side note: all 150 homes constructed by Lifeline stood firm through the earthquake!) This will make delivery of materials easier and the people themselves can provide the water and security for the materials for their home. Clustering them together will make it more efficient.

Here's what we are encountering now

These are all things to pray about specifically.

•We need fuel - both diesel and gasoline. If we don't have diesel for the generator, then we don't have electricity to email, pump water, or have electricity in the medical clinic. We need gasoline to run the trucks to pick up the diesel.

•Banks remain closed so we can't get our money here to us so we can start rebuilding.

•Shortage of construction and other materials.

•Shortage of food.

•The port in Port au Prince is not accepting ships yet due to damage, so shipments/containers of relief supplies can't be sent until we know they can get here. The shipping companies are not accepting shipments until the port opens up, but when it does open we want supplies to flood in. (Please note: Through a generous donor, Lifeline has aquired 50,000 square feet of warehouse space to stage supplies and containers. Lifeline will ship them once the ports open up.)

Fuel Follow-up

Lesly just returned from Petit Goave where we were able to purchase 2 drums of diesel; this will last 2 days. We go through 55 gallons a day.

God bless you; thank you again for all that you are doing. Please continue to help.

Living and loving to serve,

Gretchen L. DeVoe, Administrator
Lifeline Christian Mission

On behalf of Bob, Gretchen, Bobby & Lakey in Haiti, the Lifeline staff thank you for your continued prayers and disaster relief assistance! You have answered the call! Donations and disaster relief items are flooding into our Ohio office and to drop off locations across the US. We deeply appreciate your support for the Haitian people and Lifeline's ministries!!

Serving Him,

The Lifeline Staff
Lifeline Christian Mission
http://www.lifeline.org/
614-794-0108

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Raising the Bar

So, last week I was showing off the lovely Blue Friday treats I made for work.  (I was very impressed with myself getting this done on a work night.)  They may not have been the most beautiful things in the world, but they were yummy.    I also made brownies with the horseshoe logo in blue sparkle gel on the top of each square.  Those, also yummy!

Of course, our beloved Colts have won, and now I have to come up with something better for the upcoming AFC Conference Title Game Blue Friday.  Like the Colts, I need to up my game.


(I know, I know, I shouldn't have used the extent of my creativity on the first playoff game, but as a fan who has faced at least as many disappointing playoff endings as the Steelers have rings, I was playing it safe.  No second game, no good cookie-bringing-in excuse.)

So, ideas, please!!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Faith, Hope, and Love in the midst of suffering

(Tricia here:  I thought what the author is doing is pretty cool.  Haven't had a chance to read it - am I the only one whose to-be-read pile never gets smaller, no matter how many books I read? - but I hope to soon!)




Author Gil Ahrens Reaches Out to the Suffering in Haiti


Author Gil Ahrens, who shares his personal story of loss and adversity in the new book Shattered, Shaken and Stirred, is reaching out to the thousands that are suffering in Haiti. In response to the horrific earthquake in Haiti, Gil has created a special promotion to raise funds for earthquake relief.

Gil Ahrens has reduced the price of Shattered, Shaken and Stirred by 10% for all Amazon purchases of the book. Gil will donate 25% of book sales to Food for the Hungry www.fh.org, which is providing food and relief to Haitians in need.


The official word:

Personal experience with loss and adversity leads Author to help others

During a weekend trip to attend his cousin’s wedding in Denver, Gilbert Ahrens’s world changed forever. His wife, Kim, had just given birth to their first (and only) child, and although she was still recovering from her C-section, they used the occasion to introduce their daughter to Gil’s extended family. After leaving the reception early, the Ahrens’ car was hit head-on by a drunk driver traveling 95 mph. Gil’s first book, Shattered, Shaken and Stirred: Reconnecting with What Matters Most After Loss and Adversity, is his account of the aftermath of the collision that left his wife paralyzed but their three-week-old daughter miraculously unscathed.

“People who go through challenges often think they are alone and that their struggle is uniquely incapacitating,” says Gil. “Part of my intent in writing this book was to say that they—we—are not alone. That the journey of hardship, no matter the form, is not an isolated trek. It is on a road shared by many others. And it is a road everyone travels on eventually. In fact, it is a foundational element of life, dating back to Adam and Eve and carrying through to the greatest example: Jesus. It’s incredibly na├»ve and selfish of us, really, to believe that we should be somehow immune from hardship and suffering, that somehow we are entitled to a blissful life, free of profound suffering.”

In Shattered, Shaken, and Stirred, Gil tenderly encourages readers with an eternal truth he has learned through personal trial and affliction: When there is hardship, it is for a reason. “Any valuable tool or piece of equipment needs to be tested and pushed to its limits in the laboratory before it can be ready for service in the field. God is not testing us to see if we are worthy; He is preparing us for something greater than we can imagine. The key to everything—to surviving, coping with loss, adapting to changed realities, and managing to get by—is Faith, Hope, and Love; that is how we find and reconnect with joy.”


Shattered, Shaken, and Stirred by Gilbert Ahrens
Positano Press/October 2009
ISBN: 978-0984289516/224 pages/softcover/$14.95 ISBN: 978-0984289509/224 pages/hardcover/$24.95

http://www.gilahrens.com/

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Playoffs?!?

The girls asked me why Jim and I always start going "PLAYOFFS?!?!?!?!?" when the topic comes up.  I explained to them about the Jim Mora press conference and they were cracking up.  (I must do a good Jim Mora.)  So I looked it up on YouTube to show them the real thing, and came across this enjoyable SportsCenter Top 10.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Wishing and hoping...



I want an eReader.  I have officially decided on the Sony Reader Touch Edition.  Isn't it groovy?
I love to read and love to carry a good book with me, but sometimes it isn't super-practical.  With this however, I can travel with zillions of books (ok, 350 of them, but that is still at least 340 more than I can usually travel with) and not break my back or have to carry a ginormous purse.  Plus, the Sony Reader works with the eBooks from the library, so I can still get free books!  Now I just have to find someone to get it for me.  My birthday is in two weeks - is there a birthday equivalent of Santa Claus?

Friday, January 15, 2010

Blue Friday


Ta dum!
I was creative!
(those are #1s and feet, which was as close to "football" as I could get)

Pants on the Ground

Can I get this playing on some loudspeakers in my neighborhood?

Saturday, January 9, 2010

What is/will be your faith path??

(Tricia here:  I haven't read this yet, but I am hoping to - it sounds really interesting.  Might be a good small group or family study.)


 

What is faith and why does it matter?

Make sharing your faith a priority in the new year!

Everybody has faith. They may not be aware of it, but every person you know trusts in something that they can’t prove or know in an absolute sense. And everybody has what author Mark Mittelberg calls a faith path, a way of deciding what to believe that leads them to their spiritual point of view. “Faith. Everybody lives by it—even skeptics and atheists! That’s right. Everyone you know trusts something they believe in but can’t prove or know absolutely. They take it on faith,” Mittelberg says. “If you want to talk to your friends about your faith, it helps to understand what they believe and how they got there. Because badgering people to change their minds just doesn’t work.”

Many people don’t realize they’re living by faith, and few would be able to describe their faith path. But in the Faith Path workbook and DVD series, based on the book Choosing Your Faith, (which Mittelberg coauthored with Lee Strobel), Mittelberg discusses the six common faith paths (relativistic, traditional, authoritarian, intuitive, mystical, and evidential) and how some are definitely more helpful than others. Not all faith paths lead to something good. Some are dead ends.

Many Christians cringe at the thought of talking with non-Christians about faith. It’s almost like trying to explain music to a deaf person or a painting to someone who is blind. But one important thing any Christian can do is understand their friends—listen to them and consider how they think. Then it becomes possible to truly communicate God’s truth.

The Faith Path workbook and DVD can be used by church groups and individuals with a heart to more effectively engage unbelievers in faith conversations. The program builds on Mittelberg’s sensible, evenhanded approach to evangelism. DVD segments include teaching from Mittelberg, as well as short interviews with fascinating people talking about the faith paths they were on before they came to Christ. Interviews seen on the DVD are then discussed in a thought-provoking, enjoyable group format, as well as in workbook entries. Among other things, participants will learn to recognize the danger of paths that lead away from Christ and will deepen their own faith in Christ and reinforce their reasons for believing.



Faith Path (Workbook & DVD) by Mark Mittelberg
David C Cook/October 2009
Workbook-ISBN: 978-1-4347-6513-0/softcover/141 pages/$12.99 DVD-ISBN: 978-1-4347-6514-7/$24.99
http://www.davidccook.com/

Colts' Manning corrals NFL-record fourth MVP

Colts' Manning corrals NFL-record fourth MVP

Posted using ShareThis

Friday, January 8, 2010

50 watts per channel...

This post, courtesy of some resourceful person on You Tube, is dedicated to Pam and Dwaine.  Two people who played a very important role in my teen years, two very precious people to me then and now, two people who I am so glad to call friends, and two people who can be just as silly as me.  I love you zillions. 



(Props also to my cousin Bryan, who posted this on his Facebook profile.)

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Deep Thoughts with Martha


(Today I got really annoyed with the school district.  I figure I did enough ranting and raving yesterday and don't want to be pegged as the new Yosemite Sam ("reg-a-freg-a- rootin-tootin-yadda-yadda-grr"), so rather than go on and on about that, I bring you something light and lovely to make your day complete.  (It was either that or start screaming "Serenity now!  Serenity now!!"))

Santa left me some delicious dark chocolate in my stocking.  But this is not just any dark chocolate.  No, sir.  It is chocolate infused with Martha Stewart Holiday Tips.   (Yes, I am Santa's favorite.)  I just could not keep these to myself, so I share them with you.  Can I just tell you how many dark chocolates I had to eat to compile the list?  Anything for my pals. 

And so, here are Martha's tips - yes Christmas is over, but there is always President's Day, or just save this post until next year.  They are timeless and appropriate for oh so many holidays.
  1. Group small flower arrangements on a cake stand
  2. Use pebbles in your tree stand to stabilize it
  3. A big ribbon bow makes a festive tree topper
  4. Try roast goose instead of turkey for an old-world menu
  5. Hot mulled apple cider spreads warmth and fragrant cheer
  6. Wrap presents in vintage linens from holidays past
  7. Roll ice cream scoops in coconut for snowman-inspired treats
That is as much as I have eaten - sometimes I get a duplicate, so it takes more chocolate than it appears.  Sorry, you shall just have to wait.  A good writer should always leave her readers wanting more, right?

(Update:  last night's chocolate had this sage advice:  "A Christmas open house is a relaxing way to entertain."  Seriously Martha??  In what universe??)

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Snow Emergency French Toast



I am a dramatic person, but not a melodramatic person.  I don't panic and go wacko over little stuff.  Well, unless it is a pet peeve, but those are different, right?  But when we are supposed to get, say, four to six inches of snow, I don't go into a tizzy.  Apparently I am in the minority.

I could go on and on about this, but here is the thing:  you are afraid you won't be able to get out of the house for days; or that you will get out of the house and down the road to the market and they'll be out of food because the trucks can't get through.  So you go to the market and think "What can I not live without for the next two days while I wait for the plows to come?" (plow the 2 inches of snow we usually end up getting when they forecast 6).  And you come up with milk, bread, and eggs??  Seriously?  This is as creative as people get I guess.  Me, if I was into that type of panic, I'd grab coffee, chocolate, and maybe some fruit so I wouldn't get scurvy.

My dad says people have to get their ingredients for Snow Emergency French Toast.

The local ABC station had a poll on their website today:  Do you typically go to a store to buy milk, bread, and/or eggs before a winter storm?  Somebody is lying because the percent of people who said no was 60% as of this evening.  It sure seems like more than 40% of the population is at the market when these storms are predicted.  I know.  I have been unfortunate enough to actually be out of something I need and been forced to go to the market when people are in panic mode.  That's an awful lot of people "not" buying milk, bread, and eggs.  And don't tell me that they are there to buy other stuff.  I have seen the egg and milk cases and the cartons (or lack thereof) don't lie.

Some day, my family is going to starve and the French Toasties can tell me "I told you so", but until then, I am stubbornly remaining steadfast.

And don't even get me started on the people who show up for work or an event and tell me how horrible the roads are.  Oh, you mean the roads I was just driving on, but still managed to get to work on time?  Those roads?

Friday, January 1, 2010

2009 In Review

Happy New Year!!!

Y'all need to check out this amusing Dave Barry article...

http://www.miamiherald.com/living/columnists/dave-barry/v-print/story/1397654.html

Always been a Dave Barry fan because my favorite brother's name is Barry.  (Now that he is grown up, he thinks it is Barrett.  But it's not.  It's Barry.  Always has been, always will be.)

I'm Famous!

Hey - I was quoted in the Indianapolis Star!  (Almost two years ago.  Just discovered the other day.  Does this tell you how far behind I am and how disorganized my life has become??)  Check this out:

http://blogs.indystar.com/starwatch/2008/02/  (Feb 13 entry)

" 'Turn west off Michigan Road and get ready for a swim,' Tricia Fortin wrote to Star Watch. After recent heavy rains in Central Indiana, she reported a drainage problem just west of Michigan Road at Cooper Road on the Northwestside (shown in the above photo). 'Due to a blocked drain combined with bad drainage, there is a constant pond across the street,' Fortin said. 'When the temp is below freezing, it is very dangerous and icy.'  Vehicles must cross the flooded street to access the Cooper Pointe subdivision."

I am such a community activist.