Monthly Archives: December 2009

Favorite Holiday Movies

When the holidays roll around there are certain movies that I want to watch. The list changes from time to time. For the last several years one of my favorites is the movie “Love Actually”. It’s one of those movies that tickle all the emotions…laughter, sadness, joy. If you aren’t familiar with it you really should give it a try. It follows the lives of eight very different couples who are dealing with their love lives in various loosely and interrelated tales all set during a frantic month before Christmas in London. The writing, editing and acting are superb.

Another movie that has become a holiday favorite of mine in the last few years is the movie “The Holiday” with Cameron Diaz, Kate Winslet, Jude Law and Jack Black. Two women with guy problems swap homes for the holidays and each meet someone they fall in love with. It’s funny and touching and has a great monologue by Kate Winslet near the end of the movie.

What are your favorite holiday movies?

Celebrity Siting (sort of)

When I was in my twenties I lived in Los Angeles, CA for three years.  It was fun.  Besides enjoying the beach and the weather I also got a kick out of celebrity sitings (sometimes that meant just seeing them, sometimes it included an autograph and sometimes it was an actual conversation).  To name just a few of the biggies … Barbra Streisand, George Burns, Shelley Winters, Elvis Presley, Doris Day, John Travolta (actually the whole Welcome Back, Kotter cast) and Burt Reynolds were some of the most memorable celebrity sitings during my time in L.A.

Since moving back to Texas my celebrity sitings are far and few between.  I did have the opportunity to meet most of the Dallas TV show cast back in the 1980s at the Southfork ranch where they filmed a lot of the show.  And when I went to New York a couple of summers ago I saw Meryl Streep, Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth up close and got some autographs.  Oh, and I almost forgot, I had the privilege of meeting the author, Nicholas Sparks last year, at a special screening of a movie that was made from one of his books.  But, it is unusual for me to see someone famous these days.

Anyway, today I saw a celebrity (sort of) at lunch…I ran up to the Subway near my office to grab a chicken/bacon ranch sandwich and there was Jared, the subway guy.  He was making a sandwich behind the counter and joking around with everyone.  There were some camera crews there – maybe they were filming a Subway commercial or maybe it was something to do with Jared’s foundation – I’m not sure what was going on.

I took the opportunity to snap a pic with my blackberry (don’t know the two women in the picture – they were just some customers getting their picture taken with Jared) and I got to thinking how much I like celebrity sitings.

Does that make me shallow?

What Are We Waiting For This Advent Season?



This post is part of the series:

What Are We Waiting For This Advent Season?

at Christine Sine’s blog “Godspace

Holy Waiting

by Liz Dyer




For the dawn

Of light full blown

To grow inside us

A rebirth of love

Beginning again and again

Life anew

With a promise in our heart

Of coming celebration

What am I waiting for this Advent season?  The same things I wait for all year – love, kindness, mercy, compassion, justice, and the joy and celebration that those things bring.

Sometimes I wait for it in myself as I struggle to forgive someone who has wronged me or those I love…or when my caring seems to be turned back on myself and I am miserable because I am looking in the wrong direction…or when my humility slips away and I become a know-it-all defending my beliefs with prideful certainty.

Sometimes I wait for it in others as I watch innocent people suffer because of power and greed – as I hear hateful words spewed with careless abandon – as lives are lost due to war, disease, hunger, prejudice, disaster – as the oppressed, the disenfranchised, the outcasts are rejected or, worse, ignored.

Sometimes I wait for it in the church as I see exclusion, hate, division, and apathy going unnoticed while some less significant issue seems to be at the forefront – as I see numbers and programs and rules matter more than individual people – as I see the church turning in on itself, protecting itself, nurturing itself.

Sometimes I wait for it in God – when my prayers seem to go unheard and unanswered – when I am overwhelmed with all the injustice and suffering going on in the world – when it seems like the promise might not be kept after all.

Sometimes, I want to give up, to quit hoping, to quit believing, to quit waiting – but then I get some glimpse of the love that is being reborn, I see a flicker of the light that will some day be full blown …

In the man who leaves his successful, highly paid, glamorous job to start a charity for people who need clean drinking water.

In the church that goes to a nearby neighborhood and does extreme home makeovers for those in need.

In the small group of Christ followers who help those in need get their clothes washed and dried and call it Laundry Love.

In the football team who cheers  for the other side.


In the mom (me) who learns lessons of love and grace from her gay son.

In the God who became flesh and blood and moved into the neighborhood.

Yes, I wait all year but the Advent season is a special time of waiting.  It is a time to practice and train – a time to learn how to wait hopefully and joyfully – a time to be reminded of and reflect on the glimpses and the flickers of the past and the present – it is a time of Holy Waiting.