December 28, 2007

Friday Late Night Feast #173

Name 2 things you would like to accomplish in 2008.

I would like to:

1. Move the archives of my old blog over here.

2. Find balance and peace between being a working mom now and a homemaker.

With which cartoon character do you share personality traits?

How about a perfect balance of:
Hobbes, Winnie the Pooh, Blondy, Linus Van Pelt, Snoopy, Dennis the Menace and a smattering of the broad with the big club on BC.

What time of day (or night) were you born?

I don't know! I was just a baby!
I'm wondering what exactly you expect from this question.....

Main Course
Tell us something special about your hometown.

I grew up in Phoenix, AZ. The 60's in Phoenix were innocent (mostly) and very home towny. It is a different place today, being a sprawling metropolis now. Anyone you talk to who grew up in Phoenix in the 60's and 70's remember the common places, activities and local characters. Sure it was hot in the summer, but I don't remember it keeping us in watching tv either. It was all we knew.

If you could receive a letter from anyone in the world, who would you want to get one from?

An apology from the man who robbed (invaded) our home last summer.

Terrible, horrible, no good, very bad night (last night)

I have a horrible headache.

I was up half the night (literally) with my DOG, who was having the screaming trots all night....every 2 hours. I made the mistake of ignoring her tapping on her crate the second time she wanted out because I thought she was taking advantage of my kindness. Boy was I sorry. She pooped all over her crate....I had 4 blankets in there because she just got groomed and was shivering. So at 3am I was doing laundry and trying to get the odor out of the air!


She's fine today....even after leaving her in the house for 4 hours alone. So tonight she should be fine. I think she just got super stressed out from going to the groomer for the first time. They had to shave her because of several matted places. She looks rediculous!

Tonight Kelly and Cera came over for a girls' movie night. We watched Underdog (very cute!) and ate candy, Christmas goodies, pizza, hot cocoa and other stuff I think. Now I'm thoroughly exhaustified and ready for sleep, but my stomach is wondering what that was all about and is having trouble. I think it's in shock.

December 27, 2007


Today's high in Phoenix was 53F. I wore one of my cool Eddie Bauer sweaters, leftover from living up north, and went out. Yes, it was very exciting after my lazy day yesterday. Maggie and I took Maisy to the groomer.....her first visit EVER. She was very nervous since the last time we took her somewhere in the car, it was to the place where they keep you in a cage until they put you to sleep and hurt your tummy really bad! Then we ran to Target and spent all of Maggie's $30 cash, plus a $25 gift card on clothing and shoes for her. I bought some essential toiletries and then got $20 worth of half priced Christmas decor. (two boxes of brown, antic-looking jingle bells for the tree....30 in all and 2 large glass 'cracker jars' to use as cookie jars. One has a snowman and the other a penguin, so I can use them all winter.)

We went back to pick up the new dog. She was a good girl, but had several matted places and had to be shaved.....ON the coldest day of the year so far. So she is quite humiliated and skinny....very skinny. I guess the trick to keeping bichons mat-free is daily brushing. ehn

Since the dog was shivering her timbers, I decided to try the heater once more. Click, it came on just fine and has heated us up to a toasty 67F. I'm so glad it came on. SO glad.... It went so well that I went out to check on the pool pump. When it is below 32F out, you're supposed to run the pump all night to keep it from freezing. There was success with the pump too, but i had to give the sweeper a few encouraging bumps with the pool pole to get it really moving and there was air in the pipes. eek That is not really bad (I think). It just makes very disturbing noises until it gets all the air out. *gurgle...POOF....gurgle gurgle...POOOOOF* I just checked it and it's running smoothly now. *whew*

So that was my day, after a bowl of soup and tidying the kitchen, we will be spending the rest of the evening on the couch with a movie and blankies!

PRAYER REQUEST: Please pray for our group from the church who are on a mission trip to Mexico. They are doing a short Bible school for the kids there and they are sleeping in the church. It has no heat and the weather is a little more chilly there than Phoenix. Pray for warmth and effectiveness as they work with the children there.


With Charles and my 2 teenagers on a mission trip this week, it's verrrrrrrrry quiet around here. Yesterday Maggie and I spent most of the day in our jammies, arguing over who had to run out to the curb to get the mail. (because we'd have to put on shoes)

Maggie lost.

We ate leftovers, watched movies and morning game shows (not making that mistake today) and I taught Maggie how to do the 'stem stitch' on the embroidery project she got for Christmas. She is now obsessed with it. I will take a picture of the finished project. It's a cute felt pillow.

Maisy spent a lot of time snuggling up to the side of my lap and being clingy in general. I think she is cold. I had to go and find her last night to put her in her kennel (bed). After calling her name several times, I found her hiding from me in Maggie's bed! It is very cold for Phoenix this week with a wind blowing too. I noticed this morning that our heater is not blowing. It rumbles, but it doesn't blow out the warm air.

Our pool sweeper does not look like it has moved since yesterday either.

I am no longer asking why things go wrong or break when the hubs is out of town, I just accept it as reality. *sigh*

I do have plans to leave my house today and go to the store though and tomorrow across town to have lunch with my sisters.

I'm enjoying the destressing process though.... emencely!

December 21, 2007

S'all good now

I forgot that I posted that last little blip. I was in the middle of baking, shopping, and a last minute rush to get ready for our last day of school, making sure I had my part of the teachers' snack day ready, as well as little token gifts (of peppermint biscotti) for my coworkers. In the middle of all of that, we had our Wednesday night activities of AWANA and prayer time with a friend. It was quite a day.

I'm much better now. Yesterday was our last day at work for Christmas break. Everyone at our school was throwing around MERRY CHRISTMAS's allllllll day long. No "Happy Holidays" in sight or sneers at the word Christmas. I think that is all PC hype! Most of the store clerks I've run across say "Have a merry Christmas!" too. I think a counter 'rebellion' is on. We can't be led along by the nose anymore by our weird PC propaganda.

And, as my dear husband said in his last sermon, that is not the point anyway. Most of our culture doesn't really observe a celebration centered around Christ's birth anyway. But here is an article from my friend e-mom's blog, Chrysalis, I've been meaning to link to ALL December on making more of the Christmas season. I especially appreciated the part of the article quoted from the Purpose Driven Christmas by Rick Warren. Great thoughts and ideas!

Only 4 days left until the great day of Celebration of the Incarnation, my friends! Put on the music, shop with love, bake with joy and Merry Christmas to you!

December 19, 2007


I"m so worn out I could melt into nothing and blow away.

Tomorrow is my last day of work for 2 weeks though,
so by Saturday, watch out!

December 18, 2007

Wordless Wednesday: Hope

Romans 15:11-13 (NIV)
11And again, 
   "Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles, 
    and sing praises to him, all you peoples."
12And again, Isaiah says, 
  "The Root of Jesse will spring up, 
    one who will arise to rule over the nations; 

   the Gentiles will hope in him."

 13May the God of hope fill you
with all joy and peace as you trust in him,
so that you may overflow with hope
by the power of the Holy Spirit.

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

December 17, 2007

Withdrawing...hang in there pws!

OK, readers, let me just say a few words to my fellow pastor's wives who have suddenly found themselves without their beloved forum.


heh....actually she was trying to do some holiday decorating on the forum and it did the error thingie. She is grieving about it, so no rubbing it in....even though she is responsible. ;) The web deacon is out of town for the week, so we will have to find out some other ways to keep in touch! If you want to send me your email addresses, send them to, I will set up a group email so you won't go into too much withdrawal. If you think you may be having symptoms, go this page to find out how to get some relief.

We will just support each other through this crisis....hang in some chocolate and enjoy your families. {{{group hugs}}}}

December 16, 2007

Goodnight, Leader of the Band

One of my favorite music artists died this morning after a battle with cancer.

I began listening to Dan Fogelberg's music when I was in high school and by my sophomore year in college, I had all of his albums. This is how I used to spend a few hours per week, lying on my bed in daydream land.I LOVED that song. It was just the right kind of music for when you felt angsty and moody. Always a little sentimental, it was a blend of folk, rock and jazz, always pure poetry.

He wrote this song about his father.

And this one about meeting an old girlfriend:

In 1999, he made a Christmas, CD by then....and I read an article about it. He was asked in the interview if he still practiced his New Age beliefs because the album was very much about Jesus, and he said then that he had converted back to Christianity.

I am glad to know it.

December 13, 2007

Peppermint Biscotti

There is an internet cookie recipe exchange going on over at Walking Faithfully. Go on over to get some new recipes and add a link to one of your favorite cookie or candy recipes!

Peppermint Biscotti

1 stick butter
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 1/2 tsp peppermint extract
2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt

1 1/4 cups crushed peppermint candy canes - divided
(Some to add to dough and some to sprinkle on top)
Chocolate chips or candy bar

Preheat oven 325ยบ
Cream butter and sugar and beat until smooth and creamy.
Beat in eggs one at a time.
Add the peppermint extract.
Add flour, baking powder and salt, add to wet mixture.
Beat til smooth.
Stir in 3/4 cup crushed candy canes.

On a floured counter, divide the dough in half.
Roll each half into a long roll.
(about 1 1/2 inches in diameter and 10 inches long)
Set the rolls on a baking sheet at least 3 inches apart.
Bake in the top third of the oven for about 25 minutes.
(or until lightly browned on top)
Cool the rolls for 5 minutes.
Slice diagonally into 1/2 inch thick slices.
Lay slices flat on the baking sheet and return to the oven.
Bake for another 10 minutes.
Turn the slices over and bake another 10 minutes.
Cool on a rack.

Melt chocolate in small batches in microwave.
Pour some of the chocolate into a small ziplok bag.
Snip a tiny corner of the bag.
Drizzle melted chocolate from ziplok bag onto one side of cookie.
Cool and store in airtight container.

Enjoy these dipped in coffee, tea or hot chocolate.

Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

December 12, 2007

Wordless Wednesday: Nativity

This is an olive wood creche we bought on our trip to Israel in 2005.

This is the creche that Charles made for me our second Christmas together.

But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, “Abba, Father.” Now you are no longer a slave but God’s own child.
And since you are his child, God has made you his heir.
Galations 4:4-7 NLT

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

December 11, 2007

What it's all about....

Charlie Brown: I just don't understand Christmas, I guess. I like getting presents and sending Christmas cards and decorating trees and all that, but I'm still not happy. I always end up feeling depressed.

Linus Van Pelt: Charlie Brown, you're the only person I know who can take a wonderful season like Christmas and turn it into a problem. Maybe Lucy's right. Of all the Charlie Browns in the world, you're the Charlie Browniest.

(Silly Charlie Brown....he just needs to focus on the meaning of Christmas...)

Charlie Brown: [shouting in desperation] Isn't there anyone out there who can tell me what Christmas is all about?
Linus Van Pelt: Sure, Charlie Brown, I can tell you. Lights, please.

[a spotlight shines on Linus]
Linus Van Pelt: "And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the fields, keeping watch over their flocks by night. And lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the lord shone round about them, and they were so afraid. And the angel said unto them, Fear not, for behold, I bring unto you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you this day is born in the City of Bethlehem, a Savior, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; you shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes and lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel, a multitude of the heavenly host, praising God, and saying, 'Glory to God in the highest, and on Earth peace, good will toward men'".

That's what Christmas is all about, Charlie brown.

We all need a Linus in our lives about now.....=)

December 6, 2007

Reminder for moms at Christmas

For the sake of time and my family, I will just be posting some fun or devotional types of things I have collected on Christmas as I find them. With all the obligations and extra activities of the season, I want to share encouraging things, yet have the time to put more into our family life here.

This is an email from a friend. I received it two years ago, in December of 2005. She passed away just over a year ago, so this has even more meaning for me now. It is a dear reminder of how we can get sidetracked, sometimes by good things, and neglect the ones closest to us! I wish the author was listed, but on these email forwards, it usually is not. 1 Corinthians 13 has long been a chapter of the Word that I study and try to use often… is so basic…so fundamental in how we treat each other…….so read on this for a few minutes and then meditate on the real thing.

If I decorate my house perfectly with plaid bows, strands of twinkling lights and shiny balls, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another decorator.

If I slave away in the kitchen, baking dozens of Christmas cookies, preparing gourmet meals and arranging a beautifully adorned table at mealtime, but do not show love to my family, I'm just another cook.

If I work at the soup kitchen, carol in the nursing home and give all that I have to charity, but do not show love to my family, it profits me nothing.

If I trim the spruce with shimmering angels and crocheted snowflakes, attend a myriad of holiday parties and sing in the choir's cantata but do not focus on Christ, I have missed the point.

Love stops the cooking to hug the child.
Love sets aside the decorating to kiss the husband.
Love is kind, though harried and tired.
Love doesn't envy another's home that has coordinated Christmas china and table linens.
Love doesn't yell at the kids to get out of the way.
Love doesn't give only to those who are able to give in return but rejoices in giving to those who can't.
Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails. Video games will break, pearl necklaces will be lost, golf clubs will rust. But giving the gift of love will endure!

December 4, 2007

Wordless Wednesday: Christmastime 1983

Newly engaged, that is Charles and me. ;) (click to enlarge)

***To see more entries or to join in and do your own, go to Wordless Wednesday or 5 Minutes for Mom.***

December 3, 2007


I have a few friends, who I greatly respect and honor their choices, who choose not to celebrate Christmas. You have probably heard some of the reasons, and to them it is very important. I in no way want to dishonor that, but I simply want to tell you about my journey in why we celebrate Christmas.

I thought this through a few years back because some friends and I were talking about how to make Christmas more of a celebration of the Incarnation than selfish gift craziness. So here are a few thoughts for you to ponder as we go through our traditional Christmas seasons.... It 'just so happened' that I had just done a study and research project on the Jewish feast days a few years ago, in order to teach the feast days to my kids while we were homeschooling. All their feast days reminded me of our own elaborate holiday celebrations. I realized that God LOVES a celebration.

He required celebrations!

Celebrating Christ every day is essential in our homes, but He Himself set aside these Jewish feasts to celebrate and remember important things in the Jewish heritage, setting up lavish traditions, foods, even decorations for some feasts, visual reminders....symbols..... for the Jewish people. These were also, we know now, to point to the Messiah, fulfilled in Christ. And what event is more cause for celebration than the very Incarnation? So now I have no reservations about putting up lights, decorating the house, sing carols about the blessed event, baking special treats, setting up the manger scene and wanting to surprise people with special God did for us. What a surprise those shepherds got that night, hmmm?

I hope you are able to take the time to ponder God's great gift this year as you celebrate with your loved ones.

December 2, 2007

PW Tour of Homes

I learned how to put a slideshow together at tonight. It only took me about 15 minutes to do! My PW (pastor's wives) friends and I are doing a tour of our homes decorated for Christmas for each other, so I thought I'd put this up here too.

Merry Christmas season to you!

Nativity Kitsch

Sara, at Going Jesus has some collections of really bad religious...uh, not art...what is the word? Well, she calls it kitsch. It's too funny not to share. This is her Calvalcade of Bad Nativities collection. The baking sets on page 2 caught me off guard and I almost had a coughing fit from laughing!

There is a collection of Scary Santas somewhere on the net too, that I will post later.