Monday, December 31, 2018

Security PSA

I, like most of you, do my heavy thinking when I am cleaning up the kitchen.  I scrub pots and think about the steps I should take if we ever have a super big earthquake.  I load the dishwasher and contemplate a rational argument with a liberal.  And the other night, I started thinking about how hard it must be for serial killers in our current world.  Stay with me, I'm going somewhere with this.  Before, they could stalk their victim and then make their move.  Today, they have to avoid so many security cameras.  It seems that every intersection , business and front door has a camera.  This train of thought led me to thinking about kidnapping.  Now, personally, my plan is to go limp if they ever try to get me.  Have you ever tried to wrangle a limp, protesting two year old?  I have and barely succeeded.  I can confirm that I am not two, nor do I weigh what a two year old weighs.  I think with my arms over my head and body limp, it would take a lot of determination to move me.  I also plan to spit, scream, and if necessary, pee myself to make me not worth the trouble of kidnapping.  So, if one day, I do come up missing, get that footage from some camera.  It will be definitely be worth your time!

Back to the matter at hand.  These serial killers also have to be aware of Apple watches and smart phones.  You can send a SOS signal from them to get help.  Which make me start thinking, how do I activate the SOS signal from my watch?  I feel if it has that function, I should know how to use it because smart watch plus dumb person equals dumb watch.  So, yes, I most certainly looked it up.  And here is your PSA for the day.  If you are in trouble, press and hold the side button on your watch.  Continue to hold it until the slide bar appears.  If possible, slide the bar.  If not, continue holding it.  It will do a count down then notify the police with your coordinates.  And then hopefully, help will be on the way!

While "researching" this, I sort of fell down a rabbit hole and I now know that my watch also has a "Fall function".  If you have a heart attack and fall really hard, your watch will notify the police that you need help.  If you are clumsy and fall super hard, it might still work.

PSA over.  What do you think about while doing the dishes?  And don't say dishes.

Friday, November 30, 2018

Bracken Blurbs

#1- Sunday Morning, I was standing by the door getting ready to head to Sunday School when a lady came in.  She looked at me and said, "You look wider." I cheerfully replied, "Thank you!" Everyone left that conversation confused. (I HAVEN'T gained a pound!  I weighed myself.)

#2- Today, Abbey was going to clean the blender after making a smoothie.  We clean it by rinsing it out, adding water and soap and blending to get the blades clean.  The lid sadly wasn't fully pushed down.  It was her first shower in the kitchen.  And now, my counters, my walls, my cabinets, and my floor are super clean.

#3- I was talking with my Mom in Alabama and she mentioned that Alaska had a big earthquake.  She then ask me if we felt it over here.  I told her that I didn't know, but she is probably closer to Alaska than I am, so did she feel it?  And she is indeed closer.  800 miles closer to Anchorage than I am.  It turns out that she didn't feel it either! (Y'all better not tell her I told this story!)

Monday, October 1, 2018

Hello!

Hi there. I imagine that you have come here looking for something to read.  And all you see are the same stories that have been here for a couple of years.  Let me try to explain.  I love to write and I seem to have an extra amount of things happen to me that are amusing.  And for a time, my kids were little and cute and said the funniest things that I wanted to record and remember.  But then they grew up.  And they didn't want everything I found amusing to be shared on the internet.  Well, they didn't care if I shared, they just cared if people read them.  I can respect that even if I don't really like it.  I tried to invoke a law about if you give birth to someone and spend years (Years!) awake with them at night, you get to share stories until you die.  I was vetoed. And to be honest, it threw me into a writers slump.

But, I enjoy writing and I miss it.  So, I'm going to start again.  It's true.  I am busy.  But it is also true that you make time for the things you want to make time for. So for now, I'll be seeing you.

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Pride goeth before destruction...

All my life, I have heard, "Pride goeth before a fall."  But that is actually a haughty spirit.  Pride just brings destruction.  Now, in the following story, I would like to think that I wasn't being prideful.  I didn't mean to be prideful if I was.  I was trying to do the Lord's work like a good, little girl.  But there was destruction.  Great, embarrassing destruction.  The kind that makes me wonder why I am sharing this, but well, funny stories must be told.
Earlier this year, we had special guest here in Taiwan.  We are blessed to often have guest who are willing to endure the long flight over and we are always very grateful.  However, these guest were a bit unusual in several ways.  1. They were younger.  2. Their whole family came. 3. They were here for a month. 4. They were here at a time when my mother-in-law was out of country.  So, I had a chance to host them for dinner at my house.  I love hosting guest and was really trying to put my best foot forward.  I set the table with my best dishes.  I cooked a great meal with homemade marinara sauce, homemade bread and some cute individual cheesecakes for dessert.  I'm not bragging, but I'm pretty good at cooking.  And eating, but we'll just talk about the cooking! 
So, we had all eaten this great dinner and it was time for the coffee and dessert.  I quickly cleared the table and got each person their preferred coffee or tea.  I had just sat down with my dessert and was enjoying the wonderful conversation when our guest speaker said something that hit me so funny.  And for the first time in my life, I spewed coffee out of my mouth and across the table!  I was very, very effective.  I hit the guest speaker, his wife, their coffee cups, my father-in-law's cup and the whole plate of little cheesecakes.  After all, I like to do things well!  I immediately clapped a hand over my mouth and fled to the bathroom.  The table sat in stunned silence.  I quickly washed up and returned to red-facedly apologized and began cleaning up the mess.  By this time, everyone had recovered and were laughing!  Well, I was laughing, but not recovered.
As you can imagine, this has been the source of many, many jokes and I am just happy that they had a good sense of humor about my "explosion".  I am a bit scarred now.  I just barely sip my drink if I am listening to anything funny.  After all, my mouth has already failed me once!



Saturday, October 10, 2015

Schedule

Many of you wonderful people have ask us when we are going to be back in the U.S..  In an effort to make life simpler for everyone, I am now posting a very simple schedule over on the right of this blog.  If you are interesting in having the Chris Bracken family at your church at some time, these are the dates that we will be in the US.  Also included are some of our events in Taiwan that we would love for you to help us pray for.  Thank You!

Christian Development Course in Chinese

Hello World!


Many of you have approached us over the years and ask for help when witnessing to Chinese people you have met.  You have made a new friend, but you've discovered that only so much can be communicated in nods, smiles and hand gestures!  Often, we wish we had something to immediately give to you since we might forget to mail a book back when we get home.  Well! Finally! This is hot off the presses and sure to help!  It is 40 Christian development courses translated into Chinese (Simplified characters)!  With his permission, one of the ladies here in Taiwan has translated Bro. Crawford Coon's A Reason of the Hope. You can download the Chinese lessons here:


https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B20h0TRS5H1sQ3RLUXZYUnBLZzA/view?usp=sharing


You can download the English version here:


http://thedayaftertomorrow.net/ag5/Christian-Development-Course-A-Reason-of-the-Hope--ISBN-0961885335-9780961885335.pdf


We are elated to have this available!  Hopefully, this will be a blessing to you!  God bless!



Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Fall... In November

While most of the people reading this are bundling up for winter and possibly seeing a snowy landscape outside of their windows, Taiwan is just beginning to embrace what we call Fall.  On this Evergreen Island, there aren't piles of crunchy leaves or the smell of fireplaces filling the air.  But the breeze is pleasant, not like our summer breezes that feel like that gust of air you get when you open a hot oven.  The sunlight has a softness and no longer seeks to scorch your skin.  The sun goes to bed around 5:45.

 If you have read this blog for long, you know all about my love for fall.  It is such a perfect time of pumpkins, cornbread, soup, freshly sharpened pencils and newness!  I know, I know, Spring seems to have the market on newness!  But not to me.  Never for me.  I was always the kid that loved the first two weeks of summer and suffered through the rest.  I wanted the schedule and environment and even homework that school provided.  Fall was always a new start to school with new supplies.  I would beg to buy everything early and pack my backpack weeks before school started.  Then I would sit my backpack where I could see it every morning when I get up.  I remember waking up, laying in my bed and staring at my backpack.  I would feel a thrill of excitement as that was my promise that school was going to start soon.  

For a few years after graduating college, every Fall felt like a party I was missing!  But, as I've gotten older adjusted, I've come to realize that Fall is still a time of newness for me.  Some people like to make big changes at New Years or on their birthdays.  Fall is my time.

So, as I sit in my second story office and stare out at the green, green leaves on my tree, I see two reddish brown leaves.  And those two leaves amazingly remind me of God's love.  God's love for us goes beyond the cross and into the smallest, most private parts of our lives.  He doesn't just want to save us, but to have a relationship with us.  The lover of my soul cares that I love Fall.  And as a reflection of His love for me, I have a tree that sheds its leaves.  An oddity in Taiwan for sure.  Jesus loves me, this I know!