Sunday, January 27, 2013

Shopping for Churches - Christian Reformed

Today I went to a new (to me) church on Arcola Ave in Wheaton.  I think it will also be my last time there.  It was Silver Spring Christian Reformed Church. Sounds innocuous, right?  I thought it would be generic Christian, no problem.  Research shows that it has roots in the 1850s in Michigan and Holland.

Service started at 11 with a few nice hymns (there were a lot of hymns at this service), readings, prayers, and then the sermon.  It was "Little Christ's" - starting with a reference to Lewis Carroll's book on religion, which was nice.  Then he said we are all Little Christ's, which sounded good.  Reminded me of in Buddhism how we all have a Buddha Nature that we need to connect with and dwell in to live happy fulfilling lives.  From there it all went off track badly, according to me.  I try to separate politics from religion, and keep my spiritual life apart and more holy than my everyday beliefs.  The pastor today was a guest preacher from Vienna, VA.  Early in the sermon he mentioned that Jan 22 was the 40th anniversary of Roe vs Wade (a celebration I hadn't noticed passing).  That was his excuse for anti-choice rhetoric at a couple of different points in the sermon.  The first time was relatively short so I gave him the benefit of the doubt and kept paying attention respectfully.  The second time was longer and totally put me off.

I have a problem with older men and other people who will never be in the shoes of a distraught woman considering a pregnancy passing judgement on them.  What happened to freedom for all?  How can they pretend to know what is best for people whose shoes they've never walked in?  This was the first time I've ever heard a preacher talk about this issue directly from the pulpit.  Shocking for me.

When I first arrived I talked briefly to the woman that I sat next to.  She was also in her 30s and we seemed to have a lot in common, so i thought that was a good sign.  She must have also been visiting because after the sermon she totally got up and walked out.  I considered following her, but thought I may as well stay till the end since it was nearly over anyways.  Neither one of us donated when they passed around the offering request after the sermon.  Every other time I've gone to church service I have dropped money in, but this time it felt wrong to donate even a little bit of money to this church since it might use it in ways that are wrong to me.

I've been exploring a different Wheaton area church each Sunday, so stay tuned for other reviews!  I have two others that I've visited and not yet written about -- will add them soon in new posts!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Gardeners -- Seed Swap at Brookside Gardens this weekend

This weekend Wheaton will have an annual Washington Gardener Seed Exchange, on Saturday, January 26, 2013 at Brookside Gardens.  It costs $15 per person, but that includes lots of free seeds (a wide variety in smaller quantities, which is what you need to plant a real garden), talks (one sounds really good on Starting Vegetable and Flower Seeds Under Florescent Lights), and networking time.  It is 12:30-4pm with registration starting at noon.  I hope to attend and meet other local vegetable gardeners.

As noted on the Wheaton Patch, "The seed swap is a fundamental part of human history. Seeds were one of the first commodities valued and traded. Today, modern gardeners collect and exchange seeds for many reasons ranging from cultivating rare, heirloom varieties to basic thrift."  It is certainly cheaper to get free seeds than to order them from a seed catalog!

More info is on the Washington Gardener's website (the organizing magazine).

We're supposed to get a snow storm this Friday, so if that happens there is a telephone number on this pdf to call to see if the swap is still happening.  If it does snow I plan to walk around the neighborhood and take photos!  It would be my first snow in Wheaton.

Another great gardening resource is Rooting DC, a free, all-day gardening forum taking place February 23, 2013, 9am - 4:30pm.  It is an annual gathering that I will certainly attend, for gardeners (mostly veggie) from DC and the larger local area.  I've been a few years in the past and it is always great.  It usually ends with a big giveaway of one-year expired seeds that are donated to the organizers.  Older seeds can no longer be sold but still grow when planted!  Just plant a little more than you otherwise would to account for them being older.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Starting a local blog

Wheaton's location from an online profile.
I'm a fairly new resident of Wheaton, MD and want to compile resources about this community online for the benefit of all.

We have a "Patch" local news page.  It is a good place to keep up with country government meetings and the results of those meetings, read about local crime, and learn about some upcoming events.

A good blog about Silver Spring is Just Up the Pike by Dan Reed, referring to Rockville Columbia Pike that runs through Silver Spring.  Pike is an old fashioned word for road.  The author grew up in Silver Spring and is passionate about the area.

I find that the blog Greater Greater Washington includes a lot of content about Silver Spring, MD and enough of that relates to Wheaton too that I include it here.

I'm starting this blog partially in response to the sorry state of the two other blogs I know of that are about Wheaton: Wheaton Calling (Good name! Not updated since April 2012!!) and Good Eatin' in Wheaton (another good name, not updated since May 2012).

So this, Another Day in Wheaton will be another blog about that wonderful area. Updated more often, optimistic, and attentive to our community.