Infinity Goods blog

A blog for God’s People

Archive for January, 2008

WFMW & Thursday 13: Our Purpose Driven Lives

Posted by infinitygoods on January 29, 2008

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The Lenten season is approaching quickly.  For the past two years while I was working at my church I have used the book “The Purpose Driven Life” by Rick Warren to prepare for Easter by reading his book and reflecting on his 40-day spiritual journey.  I found different insights each year as I have grown and changed.  It worked for me so well that I want to repeat it for a third year, and for 2008 I hope you’ll join me on-line.  I highly recommend this book which according to Publishers Weekly has become “the bestselling nonfiction hardback book in history.”  So come find out why with me and my other readers.  If you don’t already own it, you can check it out from your local library when the time comes, or you can purchase it.

If you’re interested in “The Purpose Driven Life,” please join me for the 40 days of lent as we go through each of the 4o short chapters one day at a time.  I will start the discussion with the introduction on February 6th (Ash Wednesday) and we will continue for the next 40 days during lent, finishing on March 17th (St. Patrick’s Day), just in time for Holy Week and with God’s help we will be prepared for a new purpose driven life during the Easter Season.   (I will continue my other posts as well.)

Here are 13 of many more discussion questions taken from Warren’s book:

  1. What do you feel most people’s lives are driven by?
  2. What has been the driving force in your life?
  3. How is friendship with God similar to any other friendship, and how is it different?
  4. What fears surface when you think of surrendering your complete life to Christ?
  5. What are the barriers that keep us from loving and caring for other believers?
  6. Is there someone you need to restore a relationship with that we could pray with you about?
  7. Where in your spiritual growth are you having to be patient because there seems to be little progress?
  8. How has God used pain and trouble to help you grow?
  9. What do you love to do that you could use to serve others in the family of God?
  10. How does comparing ourselves with others keep us from fully developing our unique shape?
  11. What do you feel might be a part of the Life Message that God has given you to share with the world?
  12. How has reading through this book together refocused or redirected you life purpose?
  13. What have been some of the most helpful insights to you?

For more participants, head over to Shannon’s Rocks In My Dryer, and to Thursday Thirteen.  And if you’ve missed some of my previous posts, just click below.

Posted in blog, blogging, Blogroll, book, books, Caring, carnival, Christian, Christianity, Church, culture, education, Faith, God, Home, Household Tip, Household Tips, How To, howto, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Internet, life, publishing, Purpose Driven Life, reading, Rick Warren, Rocks In My Dryer, Spiritual, spirituality, Thursday 13, Thursday Thirteen, Tips, WFMW, works for me wednesday, Works For Me Wednesdays, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Hit The Road, Junk! And Don’t Come Back No More!

Posted by infinitygoods on January 29, 2008

wfmwbluebanner.jpgI hate junk mail. I think most of us do. It goes straight from my mailbox to the garbage can and I even have to pay for this nuisance and inconvenience to be hauled away.

Yet I had never taken the time to look for all the addresses and websites to contact to discontinue these pesky intruders. That’s because I never realized just how much of a problem it was until I went away for a month during December/January. I asked one of my kind neighbors to collect the mail for me and when I returned, my jaw just dropped at the sight of how much junk mail had accumulated.

I promise you I am not joking or exaggerating when I tell you that he handed me a huge gift bag larger than a paper grocery bag and it was even literally bursting at the seam! Boy was it heavy. About as heavy as my husband’s 20 lbs. free weight — maybe even more, but I don’t want you to think I’m exaggerating, so let’s just say 20 lbs.

So at first, I thought it might be full of Christmas catalogs (and I love looking at those) or maybe too many of our friends and family didn’t hear in time that we would be out of town and sent their Christmas cards to the wrong address. I knew it wasn’t bills because we do all of that on-line and by phone.

As I was sorting through the mail I made 2 piles: “To Read” and “Garbage”. My “To Read” pile had 2 free professional photography magazines, 1 bank statement, 3 Christmas cards, 1 bill payment confirmation and one newsletter. That’s it — 8 pieces of mail for the entire month and EVERYTHING ELSE WAS JUNK MAIL. … !!!!

So I took matters into my hands and searched the Internet for those addresses to rid myself of that junk because enough is enough! It will work for me soon and I’m sharing with all of you so you don’t have to take the time to do all that address hunting on your own. I just know it will work for you too.

  • These culprits are already making a buck at our expense:
    • Direct Marketing Association ($1 for 3 years only, then you have to re-register) = www.dmachoice.org/mps
    • They also have this consumer assistance page to help you be removed from e-mail lists, phone lists, etc. and get a deceased loved one off of lists too.
  • These guy are selling protection insurance! (Who do they think they are, the Chinese and Italian Mafia put together?)
    • Green Dimes costs $20 and they’ll bribe you by donating a portion of your hard earned money to plant 10 trees = www.greendimes.com
    • Forty-one pounds costs a whopping $41 for 5 years only, but they’ll do you the favor of letting you chose which environmental organization you want a portion of your money to be donated to — now remember, you don’t get the tax credit for those donations because you received a service, but they do! = www.41pounds.org
  • Now here’s a few ways to not get in those mailing lists in the first place:
    • When you buy a product, be sure NOT to send those warranty cards in. You know the ones. It’s those cards that tell you you must register to protect your item for 30 days. If you don’t, they won’t fix it for free plus the shipping and handling which is twice the cost of a brand new replacement. And, oh yeah, by the way, which junk mail are you interested in receiving?
    • Buy, rent, join, subscribe only with companies which respect your privacy and guaranty it in their privacy policy.
    • Don’t donate money to anyone or if you must support that nasty generous habit of yours, donate anonymously by sending a money order with no name or donating in person so they won’t get your name and address (they’ll still give you a receipt), or go to www.networkforgood.org where they send your donation for a processing fee and promise not to give out your information to anyone.

For more participants in Works For Me Wednesday, visit Rocks In My Dryer.

If you’ve missed some of my other posts, just click below:

Posted in America, blog, blogging, Blogroll, consumers, coupons, culture, deals, education, Family, Home, Household Tip, Household Tips, How To, howto, humor, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Internet, life, Mail, Recycle, Resolution, Tips, U.S., Uncategorized, United States, USA, Website, works for me wednesday, Works For Me Wednesdays | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

Find Free Classics And Coupons On-Line At Read Print

Posted by infinitygoods on January 28, 2008

Agatha Christie Upton Sinclair Virginia Woolf

http://readprint.comI’m sharing with you something of interest to students, literature enthusiasts and coupon-clippers. This unusual combination can be found at Read Print, a site offering free on-line access to the classics, where you’ll find thousands of books, short stories and poems by many of the must-read authors. At Read Print, you’ll also find a biography and illustration of each author. There is a section for articles on literature and writing, as well as that unexpected and unrelated section for coupons for all sorts of companies such as Payless Shoes and Office Depot which must keep Read Print financially alive. The site which has been online since 2006 provides clean, clear, easy-on-the-eyes and well organized pages. There’s also a search feature to help you find exactly what your looking for.

Robert Frost Emily Dickinson William Shakespeare

Posted in America, American History, author, book, books, Britain, British, coupons, deals, Early American History, education, england, entertainment, Family, France, free, frugal, history, Home, homeschool, homeschooling, Household Tip, Household Tips, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Internet, Library, life, novel, Photography, reading, savings, Tips, U.S., Uncategorized, United States, USA, Website, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Proof Of Global Warming: Tropical Heat Wave Hits L.A., Calif.

Posted by infinitygoods on January 27, 2008

It’s Snowing In Los Angeles — Must Be Global WARMING!! by Infinity GoodsHere’s a couple of shots of snow in the Los Angeles mountains that I took in between rainstorms, from the west end of the San Fernando Valley, in the mountains separating Los Angeles County and Ventura County. This is NOT a common sight, so if you were wondering why I was posting about the cold from Southern California, this visual is worth a thousand words as the saying goes. Our thermometers, Snow — Los Angeles Style With A Palm Tree by Infinity Goodseven at the low altitude of the San Fernando Valley, were below freezing, something we are definitely not used to in these parts. And some prophets tell us that snow proves global warming! I just can’t resist laughing out loud, and often. I was glad to happen upon this palm tree: a visual juxtaposition of hot with the cold of the snow.

Posted in Al Gore, America, American History, blog, blogging, Blogroll, climate, culture, Earth, education, entertainment, film, Global Warming, Heat Wave, humor, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, life, Memories, nature, News, Photography, Photojournalism, science, U.S., United States, USA | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Adventures In Blogging — What Do We Have In Common?

Posted by infinitygoods on January 24, 2008

I’ve been seeing this long list on a lot of blogs lately and it’s interesting to see how we have a lot in common with each other and on some blogs we have so few in common with each other. This list seems to have been started by a real adventurous person. The ones highlighted in red are the ones which apply to me. The ones in black I do not have in common with the person who created the list. How do you compare?

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with Touched wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive ride
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you’ and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris (and even lived there for 12 years)
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. . Seen the Northern Lights
14.Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
15. Gone to a huge sports game (and survived the crush afterwards)
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa Eiffel Tower and the Sacre Coeur Basilica in Paris
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables herbs
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a baby’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run (it must have been a miracle — most of the time I can’t even hit the ball)

36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day several decades
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer

40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country

44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love
53. In a restaurant, sat at a stranger’s table and had a meal with them (a few restaurants are like that and the train too)
54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs records (I haven’t been that organized for too long)
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day

60. Posed nude in front of strangers
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain

63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater

66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie

74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest

79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo The Bible says not to
81. Rafted the Snake American River
82. Been on television as a volunteer pledge drive taker an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark

88. Had a one-night stand
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a day cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didn’t stop when you knew someone was looking

103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldn’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication

106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Petted a stingray
110. Broken someone’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone (just a toe, so that doesn’t really count, does it?)
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a body part of yours below the neck pierced (not even above the neck!)
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery

120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper (my own mug and the ones I photographed)
129. Changed someone’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school

131. Parasailed
132. Petted a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad – and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language

139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that you’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts (even built motherboards)

144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didn’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair

146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someone’s life

And I thought I had a boring life!

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Thirteen Ways To Keep Warm Without A Heater

Posted by infinitygoods on January 23, 2008

Thursday 13 Number 15

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It’s pretty cold out there in most of the United States, even out here in California. Here’s 13 ways to keep warm without turning on your heater or at least keeping it set at a lower temperature.

  1. Wear layers and a sweater;
  2. Use one or more throws;
  3. Sleep with several blankets or down comforter;
  4. Wear socks;
  5. Wear slippers;
  6. Drink something hot such as tea;
  7. Bake something in the oven;
  8. When done, let your oven cool down with the door open;
  9. Eat soup or chili;
  10. Use a heating pad to warm up your bed or lap;
  11. Hug your pets;
  12. Hug your spouse;
  13. Use your fireplace.

And if you’re desperate because your heater broke down, you can even wear gloves, a scarf and a hat and be sure not to read any books about the Donner Party.

Wishing warmth to you all and a happy Thursday! For more participants, visit Thursday Thirteen.

Posted in America, blog, blogging, Blogroll, carnival, entertainment, Home, Household Tip, Household Tips, How To, howto, humor, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, life, pets, savings, Thursday 13, Thursday Thirteen, Tips, U.S., Uncategorized, United States, USA | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Multi-Tasking My Way To Leisure Time

Posted by infinitygoods on January 22, 2008

wfmwbluebanner.jpgLife is busy and if we want to squeeze every bit into 24 short hours, we have to multi-task and it’s all in the timing. Here’s a couple of examples that allow me time to read, blog or best of all, enjoy quality time with my family.

First, I let my appliances help me multi-task. I’ll fill my crock-pot, load my washing machine and my dishwasher, and I have 1-2 hours to go grocery shopping (I get to avoid the noise) or vacuum or just play.

Then, I’ll load my dryer — no rocks, please — and unload my dishwasher while the dryer and crock-pot are still going. I usually still have at least a half hour for another task or more play.

In the same amount of time it takes to do one load of laundry, I’ve also washed my dishes, cooked dinner and shopped for groceries, plus I’ve either done two other tasks or I’ve done two fun things.

On a cold winter day, my morning routine helps me relax. First, I’ll throw something in the oven (I either took something out of the freezer the night before or I prepared something the night before. It could even be something store-bought.)

The hot oven will warm my kitchen/great room 5-10 degrees, saving on my heating bill while I cook for my family.

Then I’ll put some water on the stove to boil. If I’m getting on the computer, I’ll turn it on now, because it would make me wait otherwise. There’s no need to stare at a screen that long. Every few minutes saved throughout the day add up to hours at the end of the day and week.

While the water and computer do their job, I set the toaster and prepare my cup. By the time I’m ready, the water has boiled and the computer is waiting for me.

I have the luxury of a leisurely breakfast while I’m cooking lunch and enjoying some Internet time (or a great book).

Making sure I rarely do only one task at a time helps me save up hours, it works for my sanity and I get to spend more time with my family.  How do you multi-task or save time for your family and yourself?

For more participants, head over to Shannon’s Rocks In My Dryer and if you’ve missed some of my previous posts, just click below.

Posted in blog, blogging, Blogroll, carnival, Faith, Family, Home, Household Tip, Household Tips, How To, howto, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, life, savings, Tips, Uncategorized, WFMW, works for me wednesday, Works For Me Wednesdays | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Are You Willing To Live Purposefully For God?

Posted by infinitygoods on January 21, 2008

The Green Tree Trail by ((IANB)) posted on Flickr’s public files
God, I have given up my own plans and purposes, my own desires and hopes. Give me strength to accept your will for my life. Help me give myself, my life, my talents, my all to you to be used for your purposes, your plan, your desires and your wishes. Help me become your worthy instrument. Help me accept and recognize your will. With haste, let me follow you without looking back. Let me say no good-byes. Let me not bury the dead. Help me follow you.
Amen



I came across a prayer I wrote a few years ago for a bible study class at my church. I was also working for the church and therefore working directly for God at the time. It was one of those spur of the moment things we have to write, off the cuff, while everybody else is also writing and all are self-consciously looking at the people in the room.

It seemed appropriate though that I should happen to find it. It just fell out of a notebook while I was looking for something entirely different, but for the upcoming discussion I will be posting here on this blog during lent about The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. It’s one of those things that some people consider mere coincidence while others like me consider it a sign or communication from God. The prayer is about giving up our own plans and purposes to do God’s will. How is that for timeliness?

If you’re interested in The Purpose Driven Life, please join me for the 40 days of lent as we go through each of the 4o short chapters one day at a time. Get ready by buying your own book or making sure your local library has a copy for you.

For more information about this book, check my other post.

Posted in America, author, book, books, Christian, Christianity, Church, culture, education, Faith, Family, Flickr, God, Home, How To, howto, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Internet, Jewish, Judaism, life, Memories, Photography, Spiritual, spirituality, Tips, Tradition, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I’m Still Dreaming; I’d Rather Be Singing

Posted by infinitygoods on January 20, 2008

Martin Luther King Jr. (1929 - 1968) I have a dream speach; Print designed by Tio and posted on Flickr’s public files

Would you rather be singing too?

Posted in African American, America, American History, art, Black, blog, blogging, Blogroll, celebrities, Childhood Memories, Children, choir, Christian, Christianity, Church, culture, education, Faith, Family, Famous Speeches, Flickr, Freedom, Friendship, God, history, Home, homeschool, homeschooling, Household Tip, Household Tips, How To, howto, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Internet, Israel, Jewish, Journalism, Judaism, Legacy, life, Martin Luther King Jr., Media, Memories, murder, Music, Nation, Negro, Negro Spiritual, New Year, News, nonbelievers, Obituary, Organizing, Photography, Photojournalism, politics, Race, Racism, religion, Republic, Resolution, singing, Slavery, Slaves, Speech, Spiritual, spirituality, Tradition, U.S., Uncategorized, United States, USA, Website, writing | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Celebrate Life; Plant Trees On Tu B’Shevat And Year Round

Posted by infinitygoods on January 19, 2008

1 Tree and 1 Bird by Mary B. Bloom uploaded on Flickr public files

When you shall come to the land, you shall plant trees. Leviticus 19:23

At sundown on Monday, Jews around the world will be celebrating Tu B’Shevat, which is the New Year for Trees. It is not a high holiday like Yom Kippur or Rosh Hashanah, but some families celebrate with their children by planting trees, donating to the Jewish National Fund to have a tree planted in Israel, or having a seder similar to the one from Passover as Tu B’Shevat begins the 60 days leading to Passover.

During President Bush’s recent visit to Israel, the Jewish National Fund presented him with a certificate for 36 trees to be planted in his name at the American Independence Park in the Judean Hills and in Negev. The JNF states, “As the present year, 5768 in the Jewish calendar is a shmitta year, when the land lies fallow and no sowing or planting is allowed in the earth of the Land of Israel, the trees that will be planted in the name of the U.S. President will actually be planted at the end of the shmitta year.”

Fellow blogger Robin has an excellent 13-point description of Tu B’Shevat and I encourage you to check her easy-to-understand but detailed information and links.

Posted in America, blog, blogging, Blogroll, Childhood Memories, Children, culture, Earth, education, Faith, Family, Flickr, George Bush, Global Warming, God, Holidays, Home, homeschool, How To, howto, Infinity Goods, infinitygoods.com, Israel, Jewish, Judaism, life, nature, New Year, News, Photography, religion, spirituality, U.S., USA, Website | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »