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Steven S. Billings

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Wednesday, August 30, 2006


Wow.  Where did I leave off?  Oh yes ...

Monday and Tuesday of last week were jam-packed with office-type work, because I would be out of town on Wednesday and Thursday.  Sermon, bulletin stuff, propers, etc., all were completed in those two days.  Whew!

Wednesday and Thursday were my first ever two days in a row in the studio.  We spent both days working on the "Where Is the Love?" mix.  What a challenge!  This song has turned into one of the most difficult challenges of the project -- something I never expected.  The session players struggled with it, and it was hard to sing.  There are a TON of words in this song!  Plus, I sang it very raw, drawing on the energy aspect of the song, not being terribly concerned with accuracy.  Now, while that gives the performance the edge it needs (I think), it presents a challenge for the mix, in that all of the inaccuracies need to be cleaned up.  So, after two days, we ended up with a pretty decent mix, but more work is needed to make it all it should be.  We still have to have our brain-storming session once we whip what is currently there into shape.

Friday I met again with RF to consider stewardship stuff.  I have some reading to do -- homework. ;)

Saturday was the dedication of the new school building.  That was fun.  Good to fellowship with friends Richard and Barbara, as well as church folk.

Monday was sermon, etc., day again.  Tuesday I prepared my epistle for the newsletter.  The rest of the day was filled with medical stuff: T@2 with LS, CC, and HoH with K.  Then I stopped in to JC for some acting fun.

Today I'm finishing up preparations for the newsletter, which will be completed later in the week by Jean & Co.

So ... back to work!

1:20 pm edt

Monday, August 21, 2006


What a week this has been!  Had a recording session on Monday.  Greg rode down and spent his last day living in Detroit with me.  We went to Coney Island downtown Fort Wayne.  I've been telling him about the difference between a real Coney Dog and the chili dogs they try to pass off for coney's here in Detroit.  Chet had never been there either, so the three of us went down and had a great lunch.

Back at the studio we started the vocal session for "Where Is the Love?"  Justin and I had finished mixing "Puzzle Master" in the morning, and it was time to sing.  Danny K. stopped in later and we all had great fun.  My voice felt really good, so with Chris at the consol, we finished all the vocals before wrapping for the day.

Tuesday was a big day for study and writing.  I finished Sunday's sermon and a number of other items.  Thrown into this mix was a quick stop by Greg and Robin's condo to see the finished work and to say goodbye.  Then a visit to HoH with V.  Badly needed!  In the afternoon I had my T@2, which was also badly needed. Then it was CC for an adjustment.  Somehow I'll get this neck back in shape!

Wednesday was all day at the office.  Jean and kids came to work, as usual, which is always enjoyable.  Well ... almost always. ;)  Later T.M. stopped by with her two girls.  We all ordered pizza and had a good time visiting.

Thursday was back at the studio.  Added a little embellishment to "Where Is the Love?"  Then we did keyboards.  Chet played some absolutely AWESOME organ stuff!  Just wait 'til you hear it!!  Wow!  Lunch with Patrick, and then back to work on the WITL mix.  Got a lot of work done on it before wrapping.

Friday I spent most of the day at the office.  Met with R.F. to discuss a stewardship strategy.  Very informative and encouraging.  After work I went to see Talladega Nights.  Ick.  Don't go!  A few good laughs, but overall ... yuck!

Saturday I spent mostly at home resting and puttering around the house.  I did get out in the evening to see Barnyard.  A little too much bathroom humor for my taste, and a subtle social agenda.  Also, it seems an awful lot like "The Lion King goes rural America."  But it has some good moments.

Sunday was church in the morning, of course, followed by a Continental Breakfast provided by Melvin Smith of Old Redford Academy.  He's trying to appease us for the wreck he's made of our Summer.  It won't work.  A muffin and cinnamon roll ain't gonna do it for me.  Now, gimme a steak-and-eggs and we can talk! ;)  Seriously, I'll be extremely glad to have the construction next door overwith.

Today is sermon day, etc.  So, I guess I'd better get to it.  God's peace ...

9:24 am edt

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Greg Wilkins

Well, the day has finally come.  Yesterday, Greg and I chatted for a bit in the morning before he had to go to his condo and meet the carpet cleaners.  On my way to an appointment, I stopped to look at his condo, and it looks fantastic!  I hope and pray it sells soon so that he and Robin can be out from under that burden as they begin their new life in Grand Rapids.  They have been wonderful friends for me.  So much so that it is difficult to tell them in person, for fear of tears.  Greg, you and Robin made a difference in my life when I needed it most.  God truly sent you to me, knowing that I would need someone to draw me out of my shell and help bring me back to life.  I already miss you both ... Trixie too.  God bless you in your new endeavors and let's look forward to visiting with each other soon.

The photo above was taken at the Kruse Museum in Auburn, Indiana.  They have lots of cool and historic vehicles there.  As you might be able to tell from the poster in the foreground -- if not by the vehicle itself -- this was the van used by the A-Team in the popular television series starring George Pappard and Mr. T.

1:00 pm edt

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Set Sail

Here's a little synopsis of this year's VBS at our church:

Our Vacation Bible School this year has followed an afternoon schedule, Monday, August 7 through Friday, August 11.

Our theme has been: Set Sail!

Daily themes have been:

Monday: Jesus Saves: Jesus saves God's crew members from their sins.

Tuesday: God's Will Guides Joseph: God guides his crew members With His Word.

Wednesday: Many People Build God's House: God's crew members use their different talents as they work together.

Thursday: Peter and Tabitha: God's crew Members send messages to others through their words and actions.

Friday: A Captain Shows His Faith: God's crew members show their Faith by trusting Jesus for everything.

Our daily schedule has been:

12:30-12:45 Registration/Opening

12:45- 1:30 Lesson

1:30- 2:30 Music, Craft, Recess

2:30- 2:45 Snack

2:45- 3:15 Craft Pt. 2

3:15- 3:30 Closing

On Wednesday evening we had a special Family Night, which included a Barbecue Dinner and a special presentation by Pr. Rodney Zwonitzer, representing Ephphatha Lutheran Ministry to the Deaf.

Our concluding service will be held at 9:30 AM this coming Sunday, August 13.  The children are invited to share their theme hymn for the week.  At 11:00 AM, we will enjoy an ice cream social.

Every child has received a tee shirt with the VBS logo on the front and the church name on the back.

7:59 am edt

Monday, August 7, 2006

2006 Nissan Altima

This is it. Not a photo of my actual car, but this is the model and color. I like it a lot. More photos to come later, and I'll include some specs then as well.

VBS this week. Very busy, of course. But in the end, we hope and pray that God will reach the hearts and minds of these young people as we present His Truth to them in word and deed.

1:32 pm edt

Saturday, August 5, 2006


Okay, the "hazy" part works, but ...

Between helping my buddy Greg prep his condo to sell, preparing for Vacation Bible School, and recording sessions at home and in Fort Wayne ... I'm pooped!

Now, mind you, it's a "good" kind of tired, but I'm tired nonetheless.

Oh ... and I bought a new car.  But I'll tell you about that later.

9:06 am edt

Tuesday, August 1, 2006


A high of 97 yesterday gave way to a high of 99 today here in Metro Detroit.  Thankfully, the humidity is only in the mid 50s, but, still, the heat is absolutely oppressive.  The high for tomorrow is expected to be 92, but Thursday we're supposed to get a break ... finally! ... expected high is only 76.

My buddy Greg has been with me this week, as he's working on preparing his condo to sell.  I've helped him out a bit and will continue to do so tomorrow and the rest of the week.

The neck is much improved, yet still uncomfortable.  CC today with Dr. Snyder.  A lot of movement -- thank God!

Looking very much forward to seeing the Marshall clan here in just about an hour.  We're going to go swimming and have pizza.  A perfect day to spend time in the pool!

4:10 pm edt

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For me, to live is Christ, and to die is gain.
(Philippians 1:21)

Be sure to get in touch so I know you're out there!