Friday, July 12, 2024

Five Minute Friday :: Capacity

Veggies box to capacity
Five Minute Friday :: Capacity Linkup

Boxes, dishes, buildings, digital storage—you name it: container capacity is an essential practical concern. When you're baking at home or in a commercial kitchen the capacity of your measuring cups and spoons needs to be accurately marked. The pan for your cookies, cake, pie, or casserole must properly fit your ingredients and allow for expansion. When you pack a box to send overseas or across town, capacity must be correct for all the items and usually for some cushioning, too. In addition, box measurements must align with capacity stated by the shipping company, whether USPS, UPS, Fedex, DHL, or another.

With the twin container ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach practically within hailing distance, I pay attention to all sorts of capacities related to international shipping. Default container length has increased from twenty feet to forty; you can imagine the increased weight and size they can handle. Then there's the ship's physical capacity in terms of weight, length, depth, and height; capacity of the water to contain how many ships at one time; how many can dock at once.

Aside from baking, shipping, and other everyday notions, as Kate observed, all of us have limited physical and mental capacity to do what we'd like to do, to pursue and attain our dreams. Each of us contains gifts God has given us for the good of community and creation.

In Jesus' time and place, people believed all resources were finite, so everyone assumed a zero-sum existence. If the rich got richer, the poor must have gotten poorer. If someone's social status increased, someone else's had to have decreased. Capacities were fixed and limited! If you believed that to be the case, wouldn't you hesitate to share your time, your talents, your financial treasures?

In his first act of public ministry recorded by Luke, Jesus announced the time of Jubilee when debts will be canceled, when all creation will thrive in shalom-filled "enough." When that time arrives, saving, investing, and stockpiling won't be considerations.

God has given us and we've received capacious talents and gifts, and we've been called to contribute. Do we fear our capacity is limited, the world's needs unlimited? Or do you believe God's capacity to give is unlimited and unchecked, that God will keep on giving to you so you can keeping giving to your community, your family, your church, your friends, the world around you?

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Wednesday, July 10, 2024

A Cat Is Watching

A Cat Is Watching: A Look at the Way Cats See Us by Roger A Caras on Amazon

A Cat Is Watching cover
A Cat Is Watching was the earlier of Roger Caras' pair of books about most people's most familiar companion animals, domestic felines and canines. He writes from lifelong knowledge—sometimes specifically about the Cats of Thistle Hill Farm. Caras' stories and observations are engaging, and even as someone who has lived with cats and known cats for a long time, I learned some new information.

Black and White photographs and drawings enhance the book and I love the chapter headings that each feature a line drawing of part of a cat's anatomy! Including an extensive index also was a smart move. This is the kind of book you might enjoy on a rainy afternoon or evening or carry to the beach for some pleasure reading. A Cat Is Watching definitely is worth finding at the book shop or yard sale, or borrowing from the library more than once.

• my amazon review: felines and friendships

A Dog Is Listening

A Dog Is Listening: The Way Some of Our Closest Friends View Us by Roger A Caras on Amazon

A Dog Is Listening CoverThis is the second of Caras' pair of books about most people's most familiar household companions, domestic felines and canines. For the title, the author picks up on the very very well-known phenomenal acuity and range of dogs' hearing. The book design is identical to that of A Cat Is Watching, and in this book also, I love the line drawings featuring snippets of dog anatomy for each chapter heading. Chapter 12 describes and lists members of each (at the time of writing and publication, 1992) American Kennel Club-recognized groups of dogs: Terrier; Non-Sporting; Herding; Sporting; Hound; and Working.

As someone who loves dogs but doesn't know them the way I almost instinctively "get" cats, I especially enjoyed and appreciated the history, anecdotes, and stories in the book. Similar to A Cat Is Watching, this book give the reader a sense of what's it's like to live with dogs who adore you rather than with cats who demand to be worshiped. A Dog Is Listening fully is worth any animal lover's acquiring, reading, and re-reading.

• my amazon review: dogs in the household

Saturday, July 06, 2024

Designing B2B Brands

Designing B2B Brands on Amazon

designing b2b brands

This beautifully planned, strikingly designed, and solidly produced book of a couple hundred pages amounts to a seminar in the highly integrated development and presentation of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu, a global brand I'd previously not known about. The Google short version of their mission tells us, "Deloitte services include audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management and tax."

Indeed there are some differences between Business-To-Business and Business-To-Consumer branding; a comprehensive, up-to-date, panorama of a single firm is just that, and won't approach or touch upon every imaginable identity communication concern you may have about your own service or consumer product. Nonetheless, whether you're an MBA, an MFA, or work with branding in another capacity, these "lessons" the subtitle describes can be appropriated well and applied to good effect in many other cases. Following contemporary design trends, the book's open layout, excellent typography, and use of [literal] "white space" conveys a sense of leisurely opulence and purpose. Designing B2B Brands has found a place alongside the books I consult for inspiration and return to for advice.

• my amazon review: design seminar

Zoë's Cats

• Zoë's Cats on Amazon

Zoe's Cats cover

Cats from her rural setting in Cornwall illustrate and provide narrative in Zoë Stokes' book of exquisitely detailed, full-colour, mostly realistic felines. You can leave Zoë's Cats on a table or nearby shelf, pick it up, read a paragraph or two, enjoy a cat view, and find yourself ready to return to mundane tasks. You might want to buy this book as a gift for yourself or a cat lover; the recipient will not be disappointed in the least!

• my amazon review: lovely gift

Five Minute Friday :: Specific

Five Minute Friday Lunch
Five Minute Friday :: Specific Linkup

I love the word specificity! Kate had wise observations about how specific a parent feels about each of their offspring, how specific God feels about us, and how in both situations we receive care, concern, and even a kind of love specific to our needs. Despite overwhelming human parental and divine love for each one, that specificity is very individual.

I'm thinking of how generic I tend to get if – for example – someone asks what I want for lunch. Fact is, despite strong food preferences, I'll happily eat almost anything I'm not allergic to. I don't like people to go to excessive trouble or expense for me at home; when we're in a restaurant and someone else is buying, it becomes both wanting to stay in their price range and not wanting to see someone else's order and wish I'd gotten theirs instead of mine (even when we're each springing for our own).

Yet from my experience hosting, cooking, preparing meals for others when we haven't already predetermined the bill of fare, I totally get the crazy frustration of generic rather than specific responses when I ask what do you want? How do you want it prepared? How much would you like? Please, be specific!

If you ask me what I want, fixed how, and how much of it, here are some pictures of specifics that would please me very much. Thank you! Next time when it's my treat, I'd really appreciate specific requests.
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five minute friday lunch
five minute friday lunch
five minute friday lunch
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Sunday, June 30, 2024

June 2024

just the smell of the summer
• June is a happy reason to use this beautiful picture again! I can't credit the source as well as I'd like, but the original's from the almost defunct blog, that's what mariel said. Mariel's replacement blog's not active, either. Just the smell of the summer can make me fall in love. Yes!

• As my summary blogs for April and May explained, I started a gap half year mid-December, taking time to reflect and imagine. I'm still catching up with my weekly scripture blogs.

Urban Wilderness / City Paradise for June

UN World Oceans Day 2024
• United Nations World Oceans Day 2024: Saturday 08 June – Awaken New Depths
Bethel Center Boston
Here's a reflection about my original Bethel
Bethel Church Los Angeles
• There's another Bethel in my world—along the Miracle Mile in LA!
Juneteenth Celebrate Freedom
• Juneteenth 2024 – Wednesday 19 June

• Summer Solstice – Thursday 20 June 2024 – Just saying' No picture this year.
strawberry june full moon
• Strawberry Full Moon – Friday June 21. This illustration from a few years back always has delighted me.
Truro Cape Cod beach house
• This house is from a series I created of my original Truro.

Read about it!
Truro and Century signs bright flowers welcome rocks
• Now there's another Truro…
living local 2024
california orange and yellow flowers