February 2023 in Review
January 26: Movers arrived to pack most of our worldly possessions; we scoured the house to make sure we got everything out, and still forgot a lot; started driving at 5:30pm, made it as far as Jackson, Mississippi.
January 27: Drove from Jackson to Sweetwater, Texas; had lunch at a What-a-Burger somewhere in Texas - it was ok; saw an amazing sunset that seemed to last forever, though driving West might have helped.
January 28: Drove from Sweetwater to Lordsburg, New Mexico; Google suggested state highways in order to avoid construction on I-20, and we saw some amazing scenery and virtually no traffic; shortly after viewing my first tumbleweed I hit my first tumbleweed, while listening to Tumbling Tumbleweeds by the Sons of the Pioneers.
January 29: Drove from Lordsburg, New Mexico to La Mesa, California; for 100 miles saw billboards advertising “The Thing,” and decided we needed to see it. It’s an incredibly well done set of displays depicting a fever dream of conspiracies; in essence, aliens are in charge of everything and are pitting us against each other; at the end of the tour we saw “The Thing,” a mummified, humanoid simian, found in the depths of a copper mine. It was worth the stop.
January 30: Drove to Torrance to retrieve Jennifer’s car, which we had shipped from Columbus; met Elaine in person for the first time; thought about staying in the rectory, but decided to go back to Jennifer’s parents’ home in La Mesa.
January 31: Spent the day chasing Archie and Rachel, and was glad not to be driving anywhere.
February 1: Drove to the rectory in Palos Verdes Estates, and helped move all of our stuff into the house; planned to come into the office for my first day, but was advised that my place was with Jennifer at the rectory; started the process of unpacking; went to the store with the kids to get the first round of things we didn’t bring with us.
February 2: Woke up to a beautiful view of the city; started unpacking; went into the office, wrote my newsletter article, met two parishioners, met Claire in person for the first time; went to coffee and had a wonderful walk and conversation with the Rev. Deacon Celeste.
February 3: Spent the day unpacking, getting moved in, and working on my homily.
February 4: Went to Costco for the first time, picked up our membership cards, and walked nearly every aisle; unpacked, wrangled children, and then went to the Chinese New Year Celebration at St. Francis.
February 5: Our first Sunday!! It was wonderful; there was a light rain as I walked up the steps to the church, but after the first service there were no clouds in the sky; Jennifer and I felt very warmly welcomed, and Archie ate his weight in donut holes.
February 6: Jennifer and the kids were in San Diego; I washed a pile of dishes, unpacked some, hooked up the X-Box and television and played some video games to make sure everything worked; welcomed Jennifer and the kids back home just after lunch; wrangled kids and unpacked the rest of the day.
February 7: Came to the office and caught up on the month in review; worked on getting settled; answered emails; lunch with the Rev. Rachel Nyback at Frito Misto, which was amazing. Phone call with Father Jerry; home to help Jennifer with our children, who were not being adorable.
February 8: Answered emails; went to rectory to meet Joel, who attached shelves to the walls to keep them from tipping during an earth or Archie-quake; worked on the calendar/weekly newsletter.
February 9: Answered emails; wrote for newsletter; meditated in the chapel; prepared for vestry meeting; called five parishioners and spoke with three; met with a person in need of assistance; went to my first Warden’s meeting at St. Francis.
February 10: Sermon prep; went to Costco Friday morning - not a good idea; took the kids to the park; grilled for the first time at the rectory.
February 11: Sabbath time; unsuccessfully tried to get rid of cardboard and packing paper; worked around the house, unpacking and picking up; sermon prep.
February 12: Second Sunday at St. Francis! Another wonderful day; the choir did a wonderful anthem at communion - being able to sit and listen is a joy.
February 13: Offloaded a ton of cardboard and packing paper; moved the rest of the boxes of books to my church office; caught up on email; started preparing for Lent; met with Mark Bennett; met briefly with David Knight.
February 14: Caught up on email; worked on Ash Wednesday service; went to my first Deanery Meeting at St. Peter’s in San Pedro; met with Deacon Celeste; prepared for vestry meeting.
February 15: Talked with Claire about the Balkans; caught up on email; met with Jaime Bellows and Terri Tsuchida to finish paperwork on the rectory; went to finance meeting; went to vestry meeting - we have an amazing vestry!
February 16: Service planning for Ash Wednesday; wrote for the weekly newsletter; lots of odds and ends.
February 17: Sermon prep; met young families in the park for pizza and socializing; did more unpacking.
February 18: Went to urgent care to get prescription refilled; sermon prep; went to Ralph’s in Rancho Palos Verdes - the first grocery store I’ve been to with an ocean view; grilled outside.
February 19: Third Sunday! It was another great day in church, and the choir did another great job with the anthem.
February 20: President’s Day - I didn’t realize the office was closed, but I was able to get a lot of work done; prepared for Shrove Tuesday and Ash Wednesday services, as well as Lent and Holy Week.
February 21: Met with a parishioner and had a lovely visit; prepared for Shrove Tuesday service; Shrove Tuesday service and pancake dinner.
February 22: Ash Wednesday; staff meeting; prep for services; noon day service; worked on Lenten services; 6:00 pm service.
February 23: Met with Dick Briggs and Fabrizio Pelá to address the sound issues in the church; wrote e-news article; paperwork.
February 24: Bought a new couch with the kids in tow - it was character building. Worked on my sermon for Sunday.
February 25: Sabbath time; sermon prep.
February 26: First Sunday of Lent, but it was still a joyous service.
February 27: Caught up on email; called several parishioners and left them messages; had a wonderful chat and prayer with one parishioner; paperwork.
February 28: Caught up on email; worked on Vestry retreat; met with someone hoping to get married in the chapel; met with parishioner; was surprised by the staff with five individual Nothing Bundt cakes and a beautiful rendition of “Happy Birthday.” Ended the day with a beautiful Taizé service at 7:00.
Rector, St. Francis Episcopal Church
It's easy to schedule a meeting with Rev. Jason!