Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Olive Mae Donaldson (day 01)

Olive Mae joined the family today at 10:56am.

8lbs, 4oz.

21 inches

I think the pics tell the rest of the story...

Monday, September 28, 2009

NEW Book Entry #01 (How the Church = God, & Why That is So Dangerous)

Another, totally separate book I'm working on that I can't help but share with you. It's been on the forefront of my mind the past 72 hours, and forced my hand to begin writing.

SYNOPSIS: I had the idea to write this book one evening while mowing my lawn. I think it was one of those unhealthy mows where I mulled over all of the negativity I was feeling at work, the dysfunction of church leadership, the wrong picture of Jesus being painted because the Church wasn’t acting as the bride it was called to be.

So out of an initial frustration and anger, came a greater hope for the state of the Church, to truly become and embody what it means to be the hands and feet of Jesus. To the world, the possibility of Christ’s bride is limitless. But there is much to be taught, learned, discarded, and acted upon.

I write this in humbleness, as I have most certainly been more a part of the problem than the answer. But as I’m learning to live and breathe and act more fully to my created purpose and uniqueness, I can’t help but write this.

I must write what I’m finding.

And in time, I’m sure I’ll even discard parts of this – and I’m okay with that.

But for now, here’s what I’m finding.

(that's all you get for now)

BUT I did just happen upon this, this morning and thought while we were on the subject matter, I'd post the link.

(Relevant Magazine Article - "A lot of people are cynical about the church. It’s a short step to then be cynical about God.")

Saturday, September 26, 2009

must watch!

this is too fun to not post!

Book Entry #13

This is an excerpt from my upcoming book, Lyrical Conversations of a Starving Artist...

Sad Song
© 2009 Ross Christopher Donaldson

I wonder which will come first
Our lives have only so much time
I can’t imagine a time
Spent without you by my side

Oh I think I need
Oh I think I need
Oh I think I need
I need your word

Thoughts of futures old and weak
Smiles and tears and lonely fears
If ever there was a time
I wouldn’t be alright
(never be alright)

Oh I think I need

Oh I think I need
Oh I think I need
I need your word

I wonder which will come first
Our lives have only so much time

Sad Song is a lullaby I wrote that is very un-lullaby-ish. The subject matter is sad (hints the name), but the instrumentation and melody suggest lullaby. I’ve always loved the abstract chaos a song or art piece can create when you combine something upbeat and light with more dark, intense, and haunting lyrics (or visa versa). So it goes with Sad Song.

Regarding this song, I have no idea what actually sparks thoughts. Perhaps a discussion, a movie, bad burritos; I’m really not sure. But after a few close friends had experienced the loss of family members, I suppose I became introspective towards mine and Kate’s marriage, and out poured this song.

I begin by stating the obvious, “Our lives have only so much time.” That is inevitable. There will come an end to all of us. The unthinkable thought of Kate leaving me someday to sickness or age brings tears to my eyes and I can’t imagine my life separated from her. We’ve grown exponentially closer in marriage. Our dreams and aspirations have strengthened the bond that is our marriage, life, and as individuals.

As the two of us became one, everything changed. With the intermingling of our souls, I have become entranced and dependant on Kate. Not in a pitiful, puppy-needs-his-master way, but rather in a way an artist needs canvas or a musician his instrument. I guess you could conversely say Kate ruined me. Without her, I was not whole. I am now. And I know it. Now there’s leverage. There’s something hanging over me. Thoughts of loss mixed with a cherishing passion.

And I think this is a perfect reflection of our reaction towards God’s love.

We are individuals before we know God. But once we taste the aroma of God and glimpse into his expanse of beauty, we are hexed. We can’t go back. We must progress. We must intertwine. We must love and work that love and better that love. And continually glide the transformative trail that makes us realize our willing and desired dependence with God.

Then at the chorus, I state the point of yearning. “Oh, I think I need (your word).”

There’s a nuance of doubt to the writing, because our humanness is to doubt, but the truth is that the need is carnal. It is completely innate.

The second verse more closely paints the picture of age. It grows more weary in its performance as it slowly decays towards the end.

The instrumentation even adds to the abstract of moods and composition. The persistent marching drum drones towards the end like a celebratory funeral march while the contrasting vocals coo and harmonize in togetherness.

But then at the final note, the cymbals crash, the low tom thunders, the guitars strum, and the vocals decay to a singular note.

One is left.

The sad song was inevitable.

Life happened.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


For me, you can always tell what type of mood/season/mindset I'm in, largely based on my 'playlist.' So, here's what I've been listening to almost non-stop for the past few weeks. I thought it was worth sharing...

That's it.


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Cora Walks with Apples

Friday, September 18, 2009

Apple Picking 2009

Kate and I have been apple picking now for 7 years, and its only getting better (Cora just makes things fun)! There's something perfect about a cool fall morning, loading up the car, driving a while to our favorite orchard, then spending the day walking through row after row of apple trees.

Today, after indulging in a couple donuts from The Donut Palace, we headed to Augusta's Centennial Farms. At 65 degrees, it was bound to be a perfect day for picking!

We got just enough for a couple apple pies, some snacks, and of course ate our fill while picking.

Cora loved every minute of it. I love watching her big eyes swell with excitement and wonder!

So tomorrow we'll start the countdown to next years festivities...


Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Tech Amazement!

Every now and then I like to give a shout out to great, cutting-edge bands, artists, writers, etc. Welp, this post goes out to some tech experts for this little sexy number...

The Cinemin Swivel is a mini-projector, "just bigger than a candy bar, it can beam images and videos from smartphones, MP3 players, and laptops onto a wall. The picture can stretch as wide as a 60-inch TV screen."

Click here for more info!

Wow, that is cool. I am amazed and curious. Portable, yet projects rather large images. Could I substitute a TV for this? If its all its cracked up to be, I have a feeling these guys will be getting rather rich from this creation!


Monday, September 14, 2009

Like Um...


Thursday, September 10, 2009

Vietnamese Romance...

Kate and I went out tonight (no Cora - babysitter) for dinner and a movie. We started our date at Monsoon Vietnamese Bistro. It was our first Vietnamese food experience. It was delicious!

We started it out with this little number...

These are shrimp salad rolls – soft salad rolls filled with shrimp, lettuce, and mint served with sweet peanut dipping sauce.

For the main course, Kate got scallops and I went spicy...surprise surprise!

After dinner, we ventured over to the movie theatre to see Tarantino's, Inglorious Bastards.

Great flick. Pure Tarantino.

And now we're back and watching the last few minutes of the game.

Aahhhh, nice night!


Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Cora Rides the Subway


Monday, September 7, 2009

labor day fun!

today we ventured across the city riding the metro (subway). we started at the shrewsbury station and took it to the arch. cora repeats "au-ch" about 500-600X every day, so it seemed appropriate.she was all smiles as we saw lots of people, the river, boats, a helicopter, and of course, the "au-ch."


Sunday, September 6, 2009

just the 3 of us (feet in the sand)

This has been a crazy couple weeks of concerts, hotels, and travel!

First NYC, and this past weekend in Chicago. This time, I was able to take the whole fam - our last mini-vacation (just the 3 of us).

We set out early friday and got into the city early in the afternoon. It was Cora's first time to a beach, to a large body of water - basically a non-pool. 'Twas fun watching her explore the sand between her toes and in her mouth. She ran right into the water without any hesitation. She's so brave!While on the beach, feet in the sand - looking out to where nothing separates the water from the sky, I had one of those moments where it could have been just as easy to feel like some pointless cog in the vast expanse of creation, but instead felt greater purpose, passion, urgency, and direction amidst the beauty. With each wave crashing into the earth, and watching Cora work the sand like an artists easel, I knew I was doing what I needed to be doing - creating and helping others see their creative potentials.

So today, back in STL, it was great to share this with the church - working, serving, living with a purpose.

Moments like these don't happen all the time. But when they do, hang on to them for as long as possible. And share them - otherwise, you're just being selfish.


p.s. here's some great eatery in Chi-town...(i approve and recommend!)

Molly's Cupcakes (put me in a SERIOUS SUGAR COMA)
Gino's East (great chicago style pizza - thick and cheeesy)
Potbelly Sandwich Works (great hot pepper blend)

Thursday, September 3, 2009


There's power in a story. There's something that transcends in the history of a given work (song, poem, film, etc). Unfortunately, much art is never looked into, to find its back story.

Why do certain piece stand out for hundreds of years?

Better yet, why do we sing or recite them week in and out, without knowing and appreciating the story?

That got me thinking...My church is launching a new service in 2 weeks called S2, and its design is to be a storytellers service - telling and exploring the rich history behind the best worship tunes of our age.

I'm looking forward to it!


Tuesday, September 1, 2009

NYC Recap

Aaahhhhh, i'm home!

Don't get me wrong, NYC was great. The venues were fantastic, catching up with old friends, eating some great food, meeting some new fans, taking in the hustle of the city - all very good. But its good to be home.

I missed my girls quite a lot!

Highlights of the tour included:

1. free comedy club tix & Hannibal Burres (hilarious comic)
2. Thai, Chinese, PIZZA, COFFEE
3. beautimus weather!
4. having an amazing photographer capture the whole trip (
5. Adam Carolla Podcasts

Lowlights of the tour included:

1. traffic
2. parking
3. tolls
4. $115 parking ticket
5. Illinois & Indiana (too much corn)