123. Concert!

Saturday night I went to a concert with Graham Saber, Ryan Stevenson, Hawk Nelson, and the Newsboys.

Now, I’m an old fogey and the flashing lights gave me a headache that lasted a couple days.

But the songs were worth it!

I bought some Hawk Nelson CDs and a Ryan Stevenson CD, and I’m listening to them now.

“Eye of the Storm” and “Diamonds” reaffirm what I believe — God used the hard times in my life, and He was there with me.

“Drops in the Ocean” and “Live Like You’re Loved” remind me how loved I am.

And a song I’d never heard before, “Thank God for Something,” just helps me be joyful.

So I’m thanking God for that song!


116. The Feeling After a Good Decision

I made some decisions today.  I’m an INFJ.  I love making decisions!

One of them was to continue my sabbatical from online dating for awhile longer, or perhaps forever — until I can jump in whole-heartedly and enthusiastically.  I’m just not interested in giving it my time and energy right now.

And, once I made the decision, I feel happy about it.

The same is true of the other decisions I made today, including one to apply to be a Cybils Award judge again this year.

And that’s just a nice feeling.  To know in your heart that a decision was right for you.

111. Happy Coincidences and Disaster Averted

Yesterday, we had a Computer Deconstruction program scheduled at the library to be run by TechShop.

I found out fifteen minutes before the program was to start that they weren’t coming.

That was the potential disaster.  Here are all the happy coincidences:

  1. This is the only TechShop program that doesn’t use their fancy equipment.  For this one, they do bring lots of screwdrivers and automatic screwdrivers.  They also bring old computers.  But this one was not dependent on their equipment.  I looked in our supply cabinet, and we did have two toolboxes with lots of screwdrivers.  We had been collecting broken electronics from the staff for months and even had a laptop computer and a notebook computer.
  2. I’ve seen this program done twice before.  I knew that mainly the facilitators cheer the kids on and encourage them to figure out how to get the machines apart.
  3. For some reason my co-worker Amanda was scheduled to host the program with me.  (Usually we only have one host scheduled when a performer is coming.)  So I didn’t have to scramble to get some help.  The two of us together could run the program!
  4. One of the mothers of the kids who came happened to have an old computer in her car!
  5. If I had found out they weren’t coming sooner, I might have been tempted to cancel.  As it was, the kids were arriving — and we did the program.

And it was awesome!

I love this program because I love watching the kids figure out how the things are put together and succeed in taking them apart.  It’s empowering!

(In fact, I like to tell the story that it was because of this very program that I dared to look up youtube videos and take apart my own film scanner and fix it!)

Here’s a girl working on a printer:


And here’s how the printer ended up:


Thanks to all those happy coincidences and awesome kids, the program was a huge success!

We think we’ll probably plan to do one on our own next summer!


107. Dominion with Tim

I know I’ve mentioned this one before.  But the morning after tomorrow, my youngest moves away.  So tonight playing a game of Dominion with Tim was extra-special.

I do love playing games with my kids!  I’ve gotten to do a whole lot of that in my life — and one more time tonight.

I am blessed.


106. Family Trip

I’m going to California tonight!  My niece is getting married on Friday.  I’ll get to spend time with many of my 13 siblings and see several nieces and nephews and spend time with my dear friend Ruth.

This feels like a bonus trip, since I went to see family in Oregon in May — because I was interviewing for a job out there.  Normally, I wouldn’t have spent the money for two trips, but that was a good excuse.

I have an overwhelmingly large family.  There are some good things about living on the other side of the country where the only Hatch most people know is me.

But it is also a huge treat to get to spend time with them.  This is going to be a lovely trip.

105. My Dad’s Award

Last night I got to hear my Dad speak and see him receive a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Chappell Natural Philosophy Society!

It worked out great — they were supposed to start dinner at 6:00, which was when I got off work, about an hour away.  It turned out they started dinner at more like 7:30 — so I was right on time.  I got to have some food and hear my Dad speak.

This is a group for “dissident scientists.”  They encourage critical thinking and no hero worship.  My Dad by no means agrees with all of them, but they listen to him, and some do good work.

In his talk, he presented why his own theory is a much better fit with GPS data than Einstein’s Special and General Relativity Theory.

He is currently calling his theory TESLA — The Elastic Solid Lorentzian Aether.  It’s catchier, and I can finally remember it!

His theory explains the data better (and my Dad knows GPS data) and resolves paradoxes.  In this theory, alas for fiction writers, time travel is not even theoretically possible.



104. Seeing Planets

We had a very cool program at the library yesterday.  Astronomer Kevin Manning spoke to the kids and brought his big telescope for them to look through.

Unfortunately, we didn’t realize the sun wouldn’t go down until 8:45 pm — with the library closing at 9:00.

Fortunately, I was the one responsible for closing the library last night, so I could make an exception for stargazers.

And along the way, I got to see Mars, and the moons of Jupiter, and the rings of Saturn.

Tremendously cool!


103. God Speaking in a Sunday Sermon

I love it when a Sunday sermon has a message that is so precisely what I needed to hear, it seems pretty clear that God was using it to speak to me.

This morning that happened.

I won’t go into detail, but I was thinking that how God has worked things out for good in the past tells me I can certainly trust Him with my future.

That’s pretty much what the sermon was about — with some additional specific details that resonated.

But this is by no means the first time this has happened.

And it’s a blessing.

102. Family Math Games

I’m proud of our Family Math Games program at the library, because it was my idea to make lots of games available to families, one Saturday a month, and ask only that at least one parent plays with their kids.

And it just makes me happy when it works!

Today I had ten different groups of parents and children playing together.  The kids were learning, and everyone was having fun.

Few things make me happier than hearing a parent teach their kid a concept playfully and lovingly.  I heard kids practicing counting and strategy.  I saw a little girl happily driving a pink car to grandma’s house using shape cards.  I saw older kids helping younger kids figure something out.

Their smiling faces when they brought a game back and looked for a new one made my day.

It was beautiful and reminded me that I really do have an awesome job.

It also reminded me of when our family used to regularly play Monopoly Jr. together after dinner most evenings.  It was so fun to get to see a roomful of other families having that same experience.

And it was slightly sweeter because my youngest is about to move out and start his adult life on the other side of the country.  This is a good thing — He has grown up and is spreading his wings.  But it makes me happy that I can take something our family did that was great for our young kids and spread it to other families.  Even the ones who already would be playing games with their kids have new games here to try out.