February 29, 2008

Friday Feast #181

Who was the last person you hugged?

My friend Teresa. We were at a wedding tonight. Charles wasn't feeling well and was waiting for me in the car. So I went in to get a piece of cake to go and there was Teresa!

I had looked for her earlier and thought she'd gone home, and I gave up hope of getting to talk with her. We had a hurried conversation and quick hugs. I wish there were time enough to get to all the people I really want to talk to and connect with at events like that.

There were a lot of friends there tonight that I could have spent a long time just visiting with....it was that kind of night.....and I think the twinkle lights in the church courtyard really helped with that kind of mood. ;) I thought it was dreadful to cut it short, but we had to.

Share a beauty or grooming trick or tip with us.

Okay, here is my tip. Do you know those really annoying problem areas in grooming that we all just HATE about ourselves? Think of someone else you know with similar problems. Do you think less of them for it? Of course not! (you'd better not) I try to remember this....my friends love me the way I am and I don't need to hate myself for things that can't be changed with a little concealer. lol It is such an American way of thinking.....and it's wrong. Outward appearance should be one of our lower priorities in life and we make it number one way too often. I say, relax and focus on people around you and who you are inside....your character.

There is nothing wrong with good grooming, being in shape and looking your best! But I want to come to the place where I am not hating things about myself that I can't change and focusing so much on outward appearance. Some of the most beautiful people in the world are the people no one can stand being around because they are so focused on themselves. The people you really love being around are the ones who are caring, outwardly focused and content with themselves.

In other words, people love you for who you are inside, focus on that and on others. True beauty comes from within....and people can tell.

What does the color yellow make you think of?

I've got SUNshiiiiine on a cloudy daaaay *cool guitar vibes*
Anyway, that was the first thing that came to mind.

I love yellow, and I found out 2 years ago,
after 22 years of marriage, that Charles does NOT like yellow.
At all. Not on the walls anyway.

When we moved here I was asking him about colors to paint some of the walls.
"Oh anything, I'll like anything you want. ....But not yellow."
I reminded him that my very cute kitchen in our last home was butter yellow.
"I know. Please don't do that again. I just don't like it."

Now I desperately am wanting to paint something yellow!
I think I'm just a little rebellious or something. What IS that?

Main Course
If you were to make your living as a photographer, what subject would your pictures revolve around?

Still life. I love to take pictures of things like old furniture, architecture, scenery, flowers, texture and good composition....

What was the longest book you ever read?

I'll count a series as a long book. I've read all of the Anne of Green Gables books, including Rainbow Valley. I love those books dearly. Montgomery is such a good writer, you can picture it all very easily, feeling like you're there. And they are just pleasant...no mystery, anxiety or trauma. Well not like orcs being slain type of trauma, just regular life trauma with real life resolving afterwards.

***Go to Friday's Feast to learn more or to do your own spread.***

February 27, 2008

Spring Fever or something

It almost got up to 80 degrees today.

I came home today to find the puppy had gone on a rampage.

So I went around and fixed all the damage Maisy had done, including chewing up neon pink and orange markers on my bedspread!!! It's in the wash. She also emptied out one of my outdoor planters (she's been seeing me garden and maybe thought she would 'help'?) and she had dragged Bethany's cute lacey shirt outside along with my socks. WHAT a pill! It's a good thing she's as cute as the dickens.

Today at recess, the second grade boys were playing tag. 'Base' was anything purple.

Guess what color shirt I was wearing today?

(it's a good thing they are cute too)

February 26, 2008

Larry Norman 1947-2008

Larry Norman died Sunday of heart failure. He was called the 'father of Christian rock' and I used to have all his albums....those big, black vinyl thingies. He wrote, I Wish We'd All Been Ready , Only Visiting This Planet, UFO, Why Don't You Look into Jesus, etc, etc. I used to know them all.

He's probably best known for this song:

But this is why he was so controversial: (mild for today's audience, but back then...yikes. Apparently this video is from the 80's...ha...but he wrote it back in the early 70's I think)

He was keeping it real before the Church realized what was really happening out there.

February 21, 2008

Friday Feast #180

Have you ever played a practical joke on anyone? If so, what did you do and who was your victim?

Many....maaaaaaany practical jokes. One time, when I was in college, we 'borrowed' something from a professor's office during finals week. It was his old, worn recliner, in which he was rumored to take a nap each afternoon. We demanded a ransom of one of those huge bags of M&M's, but were never paid.

So the recliner had to die.

Oh, c'mon now, I'm kidding. We sneaked it back.

What do your salt and pepper shakers look like?

Where is the next place you plan to visit (on vacation or business)?

Well, I am leaving to go to a ladies' retreat tomorrow afternoon. We're going to a retreat center in the mountains of Prescott, Arizona. (speaking of practical jokes, there are usually some shenanigans each year up at the retreat....I can only hope I"m on the correct side of the shenanigans)

Main Course
What kind of lotion or cream do you use to keep your hands from getting too dry?

Suave oatmeal stuff. Since nothing I have found really works and it appears I'm allergic to lanolin, I just buy the cheapest lotion that has petroleum and glycerin in the top ingredients.

Make up a dessert, tell us its ingredients, and give it a name.

I'm no good at naming things nor do I want to make up a recipe, so I will just tell you one of our favorites around here. It is the perfect sleep over dessert and we have 4 daughters, so we make it a lot.

Bake chocolate chip cookies, just until they are done around the edges. The center should be close to raw.
Put half baked cookies in bowls and put one large scoop of vanilla ice cream on top.
Squiggle a little chocolate sauce on top, then serve before the ice cream melts too much.

It is called a Pizzookie and if you don't want to make your own, go and order one at Oregano's.

***Go to Friday's Feast to learn more or to do your own spread.***

February 19, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: White Days

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

Missed, loved, pounced

I went back to work today after missing all of last week due to the dreadful FLU. I work as an aid in two different classes of second graders, and I was blessed today as I came into their rooms. The first class I worked in today, I heard a whispering wave of "Mrs. L....Mrs. L is back! We missed you, Mrs. L." It was so sweet, so endearing....I could almost look past the fact that it was these little smiling faces that gave me flu germs in the first place!

Two hours into the day, I switched rooms, coming in in the middle of math. As if it was planned, as soon as the door opened and I came in, they all started shouting (in the middle of math....eeek!) "Hip Hip Hooray! Hip Hip Hooray! Mrs. L. is back!" The teacher was laughing, so I imagined she was in on it too. It was fun and very welcoming. It turns out they were kind of worried about me. I opened their belated Valentine cards and candy while they were at P.E. Then when they came back in and saw my desk with the opened cards on it, one by one, they would turn, make eye contact with me and ask quietly, "Did you get mine??" It left a smile on my face for the rest of the day. =)

At home though, another little someone was wondering where I'd gone and when I'd be back. Maisy greeted me at the door, wiggling and 'smiling' like a maniac. She usually waits on the couch until I greet her, even though she is quivering and doing her 'smiling' grimace she gets when she is anxious. Since I've been home today, she's been following me around. When I sit, she lies with her chin on my legs, when I walk around, she is at my heels (sometimes pouncing them), and she was even patiently sitting on my lap while I brushed her with the wire brush, instead of squirming and trying to jump away.

I feel loved.

February 18, 2008

Quiche baby

When I told my kids we were having quiche for dinner, they said, "What?" Then I said, "Eggie Pie" and they were like, "oooooooo, I love that!" So this even comes with a nickname.

Here's the quiche:

1.Whatever filling you want:

Bacon and swiss
Broccoli crab
Asparagus ham
sausage mushroom swiss
Bacon and spinach

or anything else.

2. put filling in a pie shell. (recipe says to spread butter on the bottom of the crust but I usually don't)

3. Pour this egg mixture over the filling.

Whisk very well:

2 cups cream, half n half or milk (depends on how authentic or rich you want it) I usually just use milk.
4-6 eggs
1/4 tsp nutmeg
3/4 tsp salt

4. Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then turn the oven down to 325 and bake for 35 minutes. YUM

February 15, 2008

Good people

PhotobucketI just watched an amazing news story. If you want to watch it, the video is here. It is a report on a storage place for frozen embryos. Thousands of embryos kept on ice. Every city probably has a place like this, but here is the amazing part. These scientists and doctors who take very meticulous care of the embryos, actually CARE for these potential human life. It breaks their hearts when people who have embryos stored there call up and ask that the rest of their embryos be destroyed. Like one of the men said, "We may have a possible future president of the United States in there."

The clincher is at the end of the story. They don't really throw the embryos away. They save them and keep them for another 10 years, just in case there is a chance of the parents donating the embryo to another couple or want to use them themselves. I got a lump in my throat listening to how they respect those little tubes that hold something very precious. "Precious cargo" is what one of them called it.

I call that good reporting.....and good people.


For the second year, our church is using a prayer guide put out by the Waymakers. This year's emphasis....during the Lenten season....is on praying for your city. Today's devotional and verse made my heart swell.

Isaiah 44:3-5 (The Message)

1-5 "But for now, dear servant Jacob, listen—
yes, you, Israel, my personal choice.
God who made you has something to say to you;
the God who formed you in the womb wants to help you.
Don't be afraid, dear servant Jacob,
Jeshurun, the one I chose.
For I will pour water on the thirsty ground
and send streams coursing through the parched earth.
I will pour my Spirit into your descendants
and my blessing on your children.
They shall sprout like grass on the prairie,
like willows alongside creeks.
This one will say, 'I am God's,'
and another will go by the name Jacob;
That one will write on his hand 'God's property'—
and be proud to be called Israel."

I had gone to pick up Emma from school yesterday afternoon and noticed a vivid white cross on her black beanie from far away. She wears her faith....her vibrant love for Jesus....on her sleeve, literally. On hats, shirts, sleeves, backpack, notebooks. And she speaks her faith too. She is quite genuine and remembers Who she is representing most of the time. ;) The picture of her in that hat walking towards me came to mind as I read the last part of the verse,

This one will say, 'I am God's,'
and another will go by the name Jacob;
That one will write on his hand 'God's property'—
and be proud to be called Israel.

Even though there are a lot of people out there who wear the cross or put fish symbols on their cars and make us cringe inside (though not all), because their actions do not meet up with their symbolage, there is a generation rising who are wearing God's name. They are proud to be His and they are beginning to sprout up like grass on a prairie.

I hope that makes your heart swell too. And I hope you know a kid like that. Encourage them and pray for them to rise up and be the champions of our faith for their generation.....well good grief, for OUR generation too! From the way God told it to Isaiah, it sounds like HIS heart is swelling for them too!

February 13, 2008

Apple green.....an ode to paint

Robin at Pensieve is having a poetry carnival. (not a contest, sorry) The quirkier the better is the word. Here is my entry. I wrote it 2 years ago when we had first moved into our Phoenix home and I began painting like a maniac.

Ode to paint

PhotobucketApple green, apple green,
I love to paint things apple green...
It looks so clean,
With satin sheen,
Oh how I love this apple green...

I paint my kitchen ceiling nook
I paint it in the bath
But when I’m done
I look to see my children shake and laugh

Cuz while I painted to and fro
I splattered paint on hair and clothes
On my glasses, up my nose
Even green on my pink toes

No matter....

Photobucket...I’ll paint it in each of my rooms
(Tho' you may say, she writes on fumes!)
But I say, "Oh no
I really do just love it so…"
Oh, this green with it's sheen,
It's so keen
Even if it's hard to clean....
....Off nose and hair and toes and jeans.

Tomorrow I will paint with brown
And I’ll think of rhymes and write them all down.

My snarky little Valentine

I do love Valentine's Day and I hope I get a nice card....because a dinner date just doesn't seem like a great idea with both of us down with illness.

So in case you're feeling a bit snarky this Valentine's Day, check out the collection of snark over at Despair.com (scroll down to see them all). They take the motivation out of motivational office posters and give you a laugh like a swift kick in the pants.

Disclaimer: These are not TO or ABOUT my Valentine, they are just plain funny.



They also offer Valentine's candies this year, called Bittersweets. (I cannot emphasize enough how funny I think that is)

Just shoot me....


An evil plague has taken residence here and I am ill prepared to slay it.

I have the flu.

Sunday night I started feeling feverish and achy and coughed extra hard. By morning I could not aim my arms in the direction I wanted them to go or focus on ......anything. Now after 3 full days of it, I am still coughing so much my lungs hurt, blowing more goo out of my nose than any human could possibly fit into their head, and although I am not feverish anymore, everything on my skin and inside it is aching.

Today was actually a slight turning point, as my head did not hurt like someone had played the drums enthusiastically on it all night, and I also spent more hours vertical than horizontal today. But now I am surrendering to the aches again and I don't know....this is not a really interesting or encouraging blog post, but it's where I am and it's not a good place. I think I need my mommy. If you feel the need to put on a germ mask and sanitize your hands after your visit here, you are a wise, wise person, and I do not blame you.

So....what do you do while you're sick...I mean to pass the time (because I've noticed there is a lot of time during the day recently). I found myself cheering for the end of the Hollywood writers' strike and crying during the American Idol cuts tonight. Oh, also cried during Supernanny. And the commercials seem sad lately too....so emotional. Seeing the cupid being so mistreated on the Walgreens commercial....it's just more than I can take. My dog is even sighing more.

Since my head didn't hurt today, I did play a hog's share of web sudoku, Free Rice, and the very entertaining Dialectizer. My favorite dialects are the Swedish Chef and Elmer Fudd. Anyone who has some boring reading to do, must use the dialectizer before beginning. (please)

If you have a mind to, please pray for us to get well. I need to get back to work (those second graders miss me, I know they do). Also Charles came home with dreadful news tonight......he's achy and coughing.


Wordless Wednesday: Emma's party

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

February 11, 2008

Partied out

Very busy weekend. Friday we ran around, shopped and cleaned for dd's party on Sat. Saturday we had the party lived to tell about it. 20+ teens, bunches of hot dogs, burgers, pinto beans (ha) and chips. And I made 2 cakes. They played ping pong, listened to music, played PS2, sat outside and talked, jumped on the trampoline, then tried to throw each other in the POOL (even in Phx the pool is extremely cold in FEB). They chickened out and no one got throw in. People threatened that they had their cell phones in their pocket or that they would get revenge. THEN after all of that drama, they all decided they would jump in together. So they all (ok, not all, about 7) put on Emma and Bethany's shorts and jumped in, only to scramble out in record time.

I think it was Bethany who started talking about what a cute little kid Emma was when she was little. So we got out some priceless home videos of those days. Emma was almost 2, Bethany almost 4, and Hannah was 5. Maggie was still a twinkle in her daddy's eye. ;) I think it was the the most fun of the evening. Those kids laughed their heads off and Emma kept burying her head down in embarrassment. At one point in the video, Emma went running into the bathroom and everyone cheered, because I told them there was a potty training moment on the tape. Bethany called everyone's attention to the tape and was giggling, thinking she would humiliate her sister (all in good fun). But when the camera turned the corner into the bathroom, it was Bethany who was buck naked and playing in the tub!

You never saw someone move so fast to cover up a wide screen television while trying to stop a video! It was a priceless moment and we all still laugh out loud when we mention it.

They had a pinata, a 3 ft tall Mexican donkey (or bull), filled with candy. They each took a turn smacking it, then after it broke only a few of the younger ones dove for the candy. The rest of them tore up the donkey and went around smacking each other with it's limbs.

By 7pm they all headed out to a church softball game. Hannah and I stayed home and watched Waitress. I laid on the couch and didn't move til it was over. Maisy laid in the crook of my bent legs the whole time too. She was tuckered from keeping track of all those people all day.

I got video of some of it, so I'll put it on my blog here soon.

February 5, 2008

Wordless Wednesday: Birthday girls

My new sweet sixteen and my new voter at eighteen.....(and in July I'll have a grown up 21 y.o.)

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

February 4, 2008

The Man Cold

What do you do when your man has a cold?

1. Plan lots of events and meetings that require your attendance.
2. Buy lots of soup, crackers and sudaphed, then try to block out the rampant coughing fits coming from your bedroom.
3. Go to him, immediately, stroke his head and say, "Poor little bunny."

My day:
~Woke up with a sore throat and sinus headache.
~Decided not to take a sick day.
~Worked 6 hours with second graders.
~Came home to no Sudafed.
~Had to go out and brave Walmart to get my Sudafed. (my head is thanking me even as I type this)
~Ran to my car in the parking lot in a downpour of freezing rain (slush falling from the sky).
~Put away stuff from store.
~Got my sweats on and settled into my bed beside Charles who is still trying to get over a cold he's had for 2 weeks.
~Opened my computer and viewed this video which was brought to my attention by my friend Michelle.
~Shrieked with laughter.......it seemed so relevant to my life right now.
~Charles just sat quietly nodding his head and chuckling and finally said, "Well that's probably the truth."

I had to put that in writing while he remembers he said it. Okay, he's not really THIS bad when he's sick, but we still found it familiar.

See it for yourself: