Thursday, December 31, 2009

Jasmine Thai Restaurant (Lincoln City)

If you find yourself in Lincoln City craving a delicious plate of Pad Thai with a tall cool glass of Thai Tea, I highly recommend Jasmine Thai Restaurant.

I went there with my bride during our family vacation a month ago and have been meaning to give them a plug. I have ordered Pad Thai at more Thai restaurant then I can count in pursuit of the best. Jasmine Thai comes in at a close second to a restaurant that is much closer to home for many of you in the Portland area.

Vi Thai (Wood Village, near Gresham) has prepared my favorite plate of Pad Thai no less then thirty times over. Vi Thai has set the standard to which all other Pad Thai is compared. Coupled with great service and a relaxing ambiance, it comes highly recommended.

Worth noting is Vi Thai and Jasmine Thai have comparably delicious Salad Rolls, though Jasmine Thai adds an artistic flair to the plate with some small carved carrots.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

The Office (Japanese Edition)

Monday, December 28, 2009

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Chinese Man Throws Bicycle at Thieves to Save the Day (Vid)

What you don't see is a women walking out of a store when her purse is snatched by two men riding by on a moped. The man on the bicycle sees this unfold and:

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Friday, December 25, 2009

On This Christmas Day

"Can I, will I forget how Love was born, and burned
It's way into my heart unasked, unforced, unearned"
-Jaroslav J. Vajda (Where Shepherds Lately Knelt)

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

"I Was Wrong about Church Buildings"

I love see The Church continue to explore new Gospel shaped forms. Recently Francis Chan wrestling with the "comfortable substitute" that his church has found itself stuck in. And now Dan Kimball humbly confessing his reactionary response to previous forms.

If you are a part of a church, are the engaging this issue? What does it look like in your context?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Africa Performed A Cappella by Slovenian Group Perpetuum Jazzile (Video)

Mind Blowing:

Here's my second degree claim to fame. I have a Slovene brother, Gasper, who knows a couple of the singers and they rehearse in the same building that he works.

I also like this one:

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Chevy Volt Nearing Production

Chevy Volt will interface to smart phone apps right out of the gate. This will allow for remotely scheduling charging times (to take advantage of cheaper utility rates), receive status updates from the car, research rates from utility companies, notify you if you forgot to plug it in after arriving home, and more.

This is a very positive indication of a culture shift at General Motors that should bode well for the Volt, as well as the rest of their portfolio.

The Volt sounds like a technical marvel all-around.

If you are not suave of the technical features of the Volt, Autoblog has a great review up from their first test drive in a pre-production model with all components of the vehicle functional. My favorite part of the article is the repeated observation about different aspects of the Volt which are "as good if not better" then hybrids currently on the market, to which Andrew Farah's (vehicle chief engineer) always remarked that the team is not satisfied and will continue to improve it before production.

Here's to hoping Andrew Farah and his team can pull it off!

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Must Watch Worship Experience (Video)

This guy Carlos is shooting the EPK for his album when a homeless man walks up, kneels, breaks down in tears, and busts our in reggae praise!

Off of Carlos' blog:

"If you listen carefully at the end you hear me saying this to Danny.
“Keep trying to make it man.”
He looked me square in the eye…cocked his head sideways with a confused look on his face…and said,
“Trying to make it? No man. I ain’t trying to make it…I’m making it. Jah puts His soldiers everywhere. Jah says, Yea though you walk through the valley of the shadow of death… So He places some of us, in that valley.”"

LOTR Humor

Barad-dûr was an inside job! And some Lord of the Rings Facebook status updates. This new form of humor has been gaining momentum over the last year. (See also Star Wars status updates.)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Sons of Day (Music Video)

I'd like to introduce you to the first of two aspiring bands from the Russian community in the NW that I have been enjoying over the last year:

Oceans Deep by Sons of Day:

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Comfortable Substitute

After watching (and posting) Francis Chan's sermon "Lukewarm and Loving It!" I have developed a fond appreciation for his ministry and teaching. He has a great article titles "The Comfortable Substitute" that documents the changes his Church embarks on as the reevaluate how they "do church". He provides some stimulating thought in regard to "redefining success" and "killing our sacred cows".

The framework he outlines seems to be a popular trend, at least here in the NW. The idea that he calls a "neighborhood church network" is popping up in a number of church plants across Portland under a variety of different labels.

As I understand it the church model puts "small groups" (cell groups, community groups, life groups, bible study groups...whatever you want to call it) front and center instead of one of many accessories to "doing church". Many established churches that I interact with have been saying for years that "small groups is where church really happens". The difference is actually allowing that knowledge to change your system.

It will be interesting to see how this transition pans out and what the long term impacts will be. The way many talk, it would seem this is the end all be all. I appreciate that Francis Chan at least acknowledges a handful of "cons".

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

The Kneppraths Kreative Khristmas Tree!

In a nutshell, Elena and I are "making" a Christmas tree with cloth, hanging it on the wall, having kids from the apartments make paper ornaments to hang on the tree. At our Christmas party, we are going to invite our neighbors over to write prayer requests on the ornaments, and then we will put presents under the tree against the wall.

Saves space in our teeny apartment, money on our tight budget, and is a great way to engage our neighbors about the purpose of Christmas.

Where we still need your help:

We are still brainstorming ways to effectively engage our neighbors in the Christmas story at the party. It will have to be a "drop-in" style party so we won't be able to do an organized large group presentation. It will have to engage each person individually through some sort of activity. Maybe connected to writing the prayer request on the ornaments?

We are also trying to think of some creative ideas for some form of presents we can give to neighbors who stop by.


This is our own little spin on the Advent Conspiracy.

We'll post pictures later.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Anticipation for StarCraft II...

This is the type of stuff that makes nerds sleep peacefully at night:
...We are trying to make this game complete – like if nobody buys any other product, this game needs to be awesome. Like if Blizzard gets hit by a meteor tomorrow and we all die, at least StarCraft II was awesome – that's what it needs to be.

After a decade of anticipation, I am quite content with how the product is coming together. There's some juicy content in the interview, especially if, like me, you are interested from a design standpoint.

If you are interested in SC II, and haven't already, you must check out their Battle Reports.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Russian Missionary Murdered

I first read about Father Daniel Syosyev's death on TallSkinnyKiwi and my ears were perked again when I saw an article on (I found this site after my many conversations with our new neighbor Mong, a persecuted Christian refugee from Burma)

It appears Father Daniel Syosyev lived a radical life. He led at least 80 Muslims to Christ and had received 14 death threats. I can understand why the competing kingdoms of this world had a problem with his presence on earth.

The latest article I read states "He wrote about what other people think but are too afraid to say."

It makes me wonder what kingdoms in America are competing for our attention that too few Christians are afraid to talk about.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Free Concerts! Join me!

This Sunday and/or Friday evening.

Sunday: Four Russian Christian bands (but songs will be in English). You can see the details on the facebook events. It's at 10pm but super close to our apartment. If anyone wants to hang out at our place before hand and play games.

Friday: Future of Forestry, 7:30 at Solid Rock. They will be playing a Christmas set. I was listening to their Advent album today and it's shaping up to be my favorite Christmas music of 2009. Details on Myspace page.

Let me know if your are interested in either.

If you are wondering, I am done with Spanish (FOREVER! an academic setting.) and looking forward to enjoying life a little.

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Make it a Man Card

...Because guys have feelings too.

A friend of a friend makes these. They are great! Handcrafted by a man for men! Classy and artistic in a masculine sort of way.

Consider ordering a few for some manly men in your life this Christmas season!

hint hint.

If you are on digg (if not, make an account!), log in and give it a click!

Wednesday, December 02, 2009