Monday, August 17, 2009

Memory Lane

Here I am on my very first day of kindergarten at Holy Family of Nazareth Catholic School in Irving, Texas. I remember being so excited to wear that red dress. Ain't I cute?! I also had a brand new pencil box with pictures of America on it. My teacher, Mrs. Randall, was the loveliest lady I had ever seen. She had high heeled black shoes with no straps in the back so they made a satisfying clicky sound as she walked. She had long curly black hair and she was very nice. My best friend in kindergarten was Mary Garza. I also played a lot with Ryan Sitton. We would go Daddy Long Leg hunting together. Bo and Heidi were also good friends.

My mom taught me how to read and write. I have a long name for a kid to learn how to spell. She would write out my name E L I S A B E T H and then draw little lines underneath each letter so that I could copy my name out. But I thought she was mixing the letters up and wanted me to unscramble them. I would get so frustrated because I didn't know which letter would come next. I think she would get frustrated with me because she didn't understand why I wouldn't just write the letters down. It's funny now.

I loved kindergarten. We learned Spanish; learned to count; learned our addresses and phone numbers; went to the park and fed the ducks; had Halloween, Christmas and Valentine parties; played on the merry-go-round; listened to stories; made crafts.

I wish I was back in kindergarten.

Just kidding!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Frugal Friday

I think most everyone knows I love to use coupons. This is a picture of my little coupon organizer that I bought at the Dollar Tree six years ago. It originally had a foldover flappy thing and an elastic band to keep it all together. Now, though, it is showing its old age not very gracefully. Basically, it's ready to be retired... A few weeks ago, I started visiting all the Dollar Trees in our area (there are quite a few) to find a replacement, but it turns out "couponing" is much more popular now than it was six years ago, and these coupon organizers are very elusive and hard to find...

All that to say, that for my birthday, a very sweet lady in our church gave me this (pretend you hear a chorus of heavenly voices singing "taaadaaaa"):

Can you believe it???!!! I am THRILLED to have such a really cool place to organize all my coupons. Notice the handy dandy pink zipper thing that I can keep a highlighter, scissors and a calculator in. And also the very valuable "free" coupons. That way I won't forget I have them. There are divider tabs which provide separation between the different categories. And there's a funky folder in the back so I can put copies of coupon policies or sale ads there for reference.

It's been so much fun to sort my coupons and stick them in the little spots. I realized that this is a natural hobby for me. It combines shopping and sorting and saving- three of my very best skills and talents. (Also notice the alliteration in the previous sentence. "shopping, sorting, saving" - Man, I'm good. I should be married to a preacher. Oh yeah, I am.)

And this week, we are right in the middle of Harris Teeter triples. That means that HT will triple the value on any coupon up to 99 cents. Now, I've never seen a 99 cent coupon; the highest I've seen before you hit the dollar mark is 75 cents. That means I get $2.25 off if I use a .75 coupon. Limit of 20 coupons per day.

I'll spare you the sordid details of each transaction, but let it be known that with the help of this really sweet brand new coupon notebook from a good friend, I have purchased the following for the grand total of $36.44:

2 boxes Kix; Trix; Cheerios, 2 boxes Lipton tea bags; 3 boxes bouillion cubes; 9 cans pork&beans; 2 boxes Uncle Ben's rice; 2 bottles barbecue sauce; Lady Speed Stick; Head&Shoulders shampoo; 11 pounds chicken leg quarters; 4 bottles Sunny D; gallon milk; Chex Mix; 6 bars Dial soap; 1 pkg. Ziploc containers; microwave popcorn; 1 roll Bounty; Mentos gum; Spot Shot; hot buffalo wing pretzels; pkg of pretzel snack packs; 2 Zone bars; 2 Colgate toothpastes; 2 flosses; 4 pounds ground chuck; wheat Italian bread; 4 pack of yogurt; 2 pkgs. pepperoni; 3 2-pound bags of corn bread mix; Italian dressing; 2 boxes jello; 3 Weber spices; shaving cream; Sure deodorant; 2 loaves wheat bread; Starbucks ice cream; 2 Purell hand sanitizers; and a single serve of Minute Maid frozen lemonade.

Of course, this is not a typical week at the grocery store. That's why I get so excited when I'm able to do this. I do spend some time getting my coupons ready before I go to HT - on their website, they have where you can do online shopping and then go pick up your order at the little drive-thru place at the store. I go onto the online shopping section of their website and look up prices. That way I can know what's a good deal and what's not. I always inwardly chuckle whenever the cashier tells me, "You saved __ dollars!" Because, really, I didn't "save" it - if it was full price, I never would have bought it in the first place.

But that's the fun of couponing. You never know what you'll end up with in the cart! I can't be brand loyal; although I have my brand preferences (Duke's is the best mayonnaise, Heinz is the best ketchup, Grandma Mildred's is the best bbq - but you can't buy that in the store). And it's good scissors practice for the kids. They practically beg to cut the coupons out...

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

That's The Way It Is

Chris is always telling me I need to go blog. But a lot of times I don't know what to say, and thinking of something requires way too much brain energy. No smart-aleck comments allowed. So I've decided to think up a weekly plan that would guide me in my posts, so that it would require only minimal brain power and maximum fun and creativity. It is on purpose that the day that goes with the topic starts with the same letter. That helps me to remember on any given day what I'm going to write about without me having to think real hard. Heh, heh. You may think it's lame, but even lamer is having a blog and never posting. So there. If I miss a day, I forgive myself. And I might even be lucky enough to have extra posts on a day if I have something really interesting going on, such as yesterday with Autumn learning how to climb out of her walker. That was indeed a blog-worthy feat!

Monday - Memory Lane
Tuesday - Told Ya So/That's the way it is/That's what I think (Basically, I get to say whatever I want about whatever I want)
Wednesday - Wordless Wednesday - I post a picture and you get to think up a caption
Thursday - Thoughtful Thursday
Friday - Frugal Friday
Saturday -
Sunday - Song and Verse

Unfortunately, I can't remember the "S" word for Saturday. And my list is ... somewhere. So I'll have to figure that out, but I still have a few days before I have to worry about it.

That's the way it is.

Hmmm, now I wonder, was it Silly Saturday, Saturday Snack, Saturday's Surprise, Sneaky Saturday,...

Monday, August 10, 2009

Autumn's Escape

Monday's Memory Lane

My mom was here last week visiting. My kids call her "Grandma Julie". When I was growing up, we called our grandparents "Grandma" and "Grandpa". All of them. Yeah, I know. It was very confusing. So confusing, that in fact we kids resorted to calling them the "Big Ones" and the Little Ones". Not to their face, but just when we were talking about them to each other. Obviously in this picture, this is the "Little Grandma" since she was very short. The other Grandma was the "Big Grandma" since she was much taller (although she was not nearly as plump) than this one pictured. I was nine years old in this picture. This was taken on one of our annual pilgrimages to Michigan to visit the Grandmas and Grandpas. Of particular note in this photo is my baby brother who is screaming his head off. Very cute, John.

This is Roseanna and Lawrence, my dad's parents. They raised 5 boys, so Grandma was a "tough cookie". I remember that several years before this picture, she had a heart attack. That's when she quit smoking. She used to tell us about how when all her boys were at home and she made cookies, she had to hide the cookies in a special hiding spot so that they wouldn't eat them all at once. I begged her to tell me where she used to hide them; she finally told me, but only after we got all alone in the kitchen and she whispered the secret into my ear. Whenever we would leave at the end of our yearly visit, she always handed a goody bag over to my mom for us kids. It was filled with miniature candy bars, jars of hot fudge, jelly rings and gumdrops. Grandpa was a brick mason. He thought nothing about running around the top of smokestacks at factories, or riding a motorcycle while standing. He even rode his first rollercoaster in his late 80's. He told the best stories about living through the Great Depression. I can still hear his voice in my mind as he would laugh and tell jokes and say things like, "You can say that again!" or "...Go a ways down the pike..." or "You must have a hole in your glass, you need a refill of root beer!" At least once during each visit, he would take us grandkids on a walk up to town and we'd get a donut at the grocery store. I don't know what was more fun - that donut and chocolate milk or playing with the cattails near the pond on the way to town.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Sunday's Song and Verse

These are written so that you may believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing you may have life in His name. John 20:31

Monday, July 27, 2009

Bits and Pieces From My Childhood

Listen, my children, and you shall hear of the midnight ride of Paul Revere. Twas the 18th of April in 79, hardly a man is still alive who remembers that famous day and year. One if by land and two if by sea, and I on the opposite shore shall be, ready and waiting to spread the alarm to every Middlesex village and farm...

In fourteen hundred and ninety two Columbus sailed the ocean blue.

I have to live with myself and so
I want to be fit for myself to know
I want to be able as the days go by
To look myself right in the eye...

Make new friends but keep the old
One is silver and the other gold.

Once I was a tadpole grubbing in the mire
Till I became ambitious and started to aspire
I rubbed my tail so vigorously against a sunken log
It disappeared completely and I found myself...a frog!...

Righty tighty lefty loosey.

The Goops they lick their fingers
The Goops they lick their knives
They wipe their mouths on the tablecloths
They lead disgusting lives...

When in the course of human events, it becomes ...

Four score and seven years ago...

The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.

Be sure your sin will find you out.

Be ye kind, one to another, tenderhearted, forgiving each other, even as God, for Christ's sake, has forgiven you.

Every Good Boy Does Fine

A penny saved is more than a penny earned.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

The Cruke

A warm breeze washes over my body as the waves softly lap at the side of the boat. The boat I am on strangely resembles the cruise ship we were on a couple of months ago. I listen to the sales pitch of the ten-year old surfer boy who's missing a leg. He is touting a blow-up killer whale decoy who is also missing a leg. The stump of the plastic whale is shaped like a chicken leg. The surfer boy explains that he lost his leg last summer swimming with the killer whales, but oh, the fun to be had... it was worth it...

(...hoarse crying sounds...)

I open my eyes to the sound of Savannah sobbing, standing next to my bed, her face inches away from my face. She gives a throaty cough. I jerk my head back and glance at the bright red numbers on the clock. 4:26 am. "Calm down, Savannah. Why are you crying?" She gives a couple of heavy breaths then gasps, "I've got the cruke!"

*Cruke = croup. A coupla months ago, Savannah did have the croup. Two nights ago, Autumn had the croup. Savannah woke up last night coughing and worked herself up into a dither thinking she had the croup. She maybe had a slight touch of it, but nothing major. Colds are going around the house. Me and Seth are the only ones not touched by it... (knock on wood).

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Old Fogey

This morning as we were eating our breakfast of (what else) frosted mini-wheats, Jacob was reading the milk jug label. "Hunter Farms... is that the name of the farm this milk came from?"
I said, "That would be my guess."
Then ensued a discussion between Jacob, Savannah and Eli about how farmers milk cows - Jacob said, "City farmers use a machine that hook onto the ..."
Savannah interrupts, "the milk thingies!" as she points to her belly.
"Udders, Savannah," I correct.
Jacob continues, "Yeah, they hook on there and it milks the cow. Country farmers milk the cow the old fashioned way."
Eli giggles, "But the fahmahs have to be vewy gentle. Or the cows might kick like on That's So Raven."
Jacob goes for the first hand experience, "Mommy, what does it feel like to milk a cow?"
"I don't know, Jacob, I've never milked a cow before."
Disbelief around the table.
"What do you mean, you've never milked a cow?! I thought you grew up in the old know, like in the 90's. Hey, Eli, back then the cars didn't have any curves like our cars do. Cars back then had all corners. I'll draw you a picture after breakfast so you can know what they looked like."

I hate to admit it, but yes, if the 90's are the old days, I am an old fogey.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Command & Conquer 2

I'm so excited about the deal that‘s coming this weekend at Texas Speedway, and since Elisabeth’s eyes glaze over when I share my stats with her, I have to get this out of my system here... :)

Mark Martin at intermediate tracks
221 - the number of top ten finishes he has
139 - the number of top five finishes he has
18 - the number of wins he has

The last two weeks
6th at Bristol
7th at Martinsville
7 - the number of spots he has gained in the points
27th - where he currently is in the standings
He’s on a roll!

TOTAL wins in his career = 35
plus 48 wins in Nationwide and 7 in the truck series

So all together he has 90 wins!

And now I get to prepare for Texas...

Mark Martin - at Texas
8 - the number of top ten finishes he has
5 - the number of top five finishes he has
1 - the number of wins he has

Plus he has won 5 IROC races, come in 2nd in points 4 times, and has the experience of driving in NASCAR since 1981.

I will definitely be eating cereal to support his sponsor - no fear there. Even if I didn't like frosted mini wheats, I would still do this to support Mark Martin (#5 driving for Kelloggs). Anyway I look at this, he’ll come out the winner!!!

Guest post by Chris

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Command & Conquer

I'm so excited about the deal I got this morning at Harris Teeter, and since Chris' eyes glaze over when I recount my exploits to him, I have to get this out of my system here... :)

1st transaction -
8 boxes frosted mini wheats
1 box honeycomb cereal
worcestershire sauce
frank's red hot sauce
mentos gum
airheads candy (6 pk)
cracked wheat italian bread (which I got sliced to make sandwiches with)
rhodes frozen dinner rolls
6 cans pillsbury grands biscuits
1 bag reduced apples
1 bag reduced nectarines
TOTAL I paid = $5.38
plus 3 coupons for free milk and a mail-in form for $10 from Kelloggs

So now I had to go use my free coupons for milk...

2nd transaction -
8 boxes frosted mini wheats
3 gallons organic milk
TOTAL I paid = $6.15
plus 3 more coupons for free milk and a mail-in form for $10 from Kelloggs

Plus I can cut out 5 tokens from my mini wheats boxes and send in for a free DVD.

So all together I paid $11.53 for everything!

We will definitely eat all this cereal - no fear there. Even if we didn't like frosted mini wheats, I would still do this to make the money ($20 back from Kelloggs) and I could donate the cereal. Anyway I look at this, I come out the winner!!!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Center of the Universe

Just in case you didn't know, I am the center of the universe.

Now you're mad at me because you think I'm wrong, but I'm telling you, I am the center of the universe.

Okay, so maybe I'm not really the center of the universe, but I know someone who does think so:
To Autumn, I am the center of the universe. I realized that the other day. It's funny and sweet how her moods change depending on whether I'm paying attention to her, holding her, talking to her, feeding her, or just being in the same room as her. And when I'm not doing any of those things, then she lets me know of her displeasure. Which, in reality, shows that she is the center of the universe. So as far as she's concerned, it's all about her which means it's all about me. Thinking this through is starting to hurt my brain. But it does reinforce my personal opinion and belief that all humans are at the core very selfish beings.

I mean, really, most of what I do or think is based on selfishness. Why do I buy ice cream? Because I want it. Why do I get mad at other drivers? Because they're not driving the way I think they should. Why do I make the kids go to bed early? Because I am tired. Why do I expect certain behavior from others? Because I think I deserve it/that's the way it should be done (according to whom?-me)/I want things to be fair (the way I see it).

And when I don't get my way, I do like Autumn does. I pitch a fit. Figuratively speaking (most of the time). What is pitching a fit? Complaining, whining, ignoring, grumbling, yelling, crying, pounding fists and feet, silent treatment, making so much "noise" that I get my way. Lots of grown-ups do this. It's just hard to admit, or even see. Haven't you ever felt like suing someone because you didn't think you were done right? Well, guess what? Life ain't fair. Ain't no amount of fits gonna make it fair. I'm not the center of the universe. You're not the center of the universe. And it's an awful hard thing to have to tell Autumn, but she's not the center of the universe, either.

God is the real, true, and only center of the universe. Dadgummit, He's the One who created the universe that needed a center. And since He created the universe, I reckon He's the only one big enough to fill the center of it. So really, it's a matter of perception vs. reality. I may feel like and think that I'm the one it's all about. But I'm not. God is. I need to re-align my thinking to the truth. God is the center of the universe. And God wants me to accept Him as the center of my universe. It's up to me whether I accept or not, but that doesn't change the fact that He is. I can choose to be in harmony with Him, or I can choose to "pitch a fit" and fight against Him.

I am so thankful that God is the center of my universe. I hope that one day Autumn will acknowledge the truth of her Creator. And I pray that you, too, have your center calibrated with the true Center of the universe.

Friday, March 6, 2009


So, I hit my mid 30’s today. And since the average lifespan is relatively 70, I guess that puts me at “mid-life”. I know that the 50’s are usually associated with the “mid-life” crisis but I feel I’m being a little presumptuous to think I’ll make it to 100 or more. The 30’s are an interesting time of life. When I was in my teens, I perceived the 30’s as being old. And I assumed that by the time I reached those years, life would be pretty settled and on course. That is not the case in so many ways. I still have a part of me that is searching for who I am and where I’m supposed to be in the world. I still feel I’m in transition. Actually, there seems to be strong Biblical support for what Dr. Black calls the “age thirty transition”. I’ve not read his book that covers this subject but I heard him speak on it at a small conference years ago. The concept is simply that the age 12 and the age 30 are transition ages in Scripture. At age 12, one becomes a young adult (at least, in the generations of old this was true) and then the age 30 was when one transitions to full adulthood. It is also a transition when one becomes aware of their mortality and the realization that life will pass them by if they don’t get settled and find their place.
It is an interesting thought and one that seems supported by experience if not Scripture. I won’t go into his argument here (the links below point to his book and to a sermon on this) but I can testify to the feeling. It is only in my thirties that I have begun to feel comfortable in my own skin and with who I am. It wasn’t until my thirties that I began to feel comfortable around “adults”, began to think of the rest of my life, and began to worry about my health. Of course, my experience is not the norm for all but I believe many could testify.
I’m 35 now. If God is willing, I have many years to live. And if the age thirty transition has any merit to it (and I personally buy into much of it), I’m just beginning to live life at its best and fullest. The second half is the best half. It not only encourages me to look forward to what God is about to do in me and through me; it reminds me to ease up on those younger than me who are still transitioning. I give them grace and see them all wearing signs that say “under construction”. And don’t think that the construction project ends when you hit thirty or thirty-five. The sign is just changed to read “Under Construction - sorry for the delay”.
“For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.” Phil 1:6 (NASB)

Age 30 Transition sermon
Dr. Black’s book

Guest Post by Chris

Thursday, March 5, 2009


I think I am physically dyslexic.

I frequently have to stick up both my hands to see which one forms the "L" for left, to remind myself which side is left or right. As long as I'm confessing, I might as well add that I still sing the ABC's to alphabetize things; but that doesn't have anything to do with my physical dyslexia.

I realized my dyslexia issue tonight. At the kickboxing class at the gym. It was my first kickboxing class; I was excited. We started out with the loud music and the instructor hollering out the commands. "March in place." This was easy. He showed us newbies the few punches and kicks that we would encounter. I could do this. "Right jab". So far, so good. "Right jab, left hook." Oh, yeah! "Right, left, left knee." I'm gettin' the rhythm, baby. "Right, left, left knee, right kick; Super Power!" Uh, oh. My knee was kicking when everyone else was jabbing. My left hook was going hard and fast while everyone else is right side-kicking.

I looked like a flailing monkey.

I couldn't keep my right and left straight. I couldn't remember if arms meant legs or legs meant arms.

But I'm going back next week. It was fun despite my appendage entanglement. And I think this class can teach me a thing or two!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


It’s ping pong with a kiss. The love pong, that is. A great website that Elisabeth and I discovered last year. It’s a fun quirky way to strengthen the communication skills between couples. The concept is very simple. Both of you sign up and then one of you will receive an assignment by email. Each assignment seeks to help improve on how you communicate and/or how to communicate on particular topics. Along the way, you can click on highlighted words that give extra counsel on how to understand the art of communication better. After you’ve completed your assignment, an email will be sent to notify your pooh-bear. And then your sweet-tart will have a chance to respond to what you’ve said. Once your lovey-dovey has had the chance to read and respond to what you‘ve shared, the assignment is complete. You can either move on to the next assignment (which will be emailed to your little pumpkin) or keep the communication going as much as you like on the current subject. This back and forth (like ping pong, thus the name, love pong) is a great way to learn to communicate and have fun at the same time. We highly recommend it.

So, check it out and love pong away. By the way, it’s your serve Elisabeth…my little dandelion.

Guest Post by Chris

Sunday, March 1, 2009


My ears, tired after hearing the downpour of rain for 2 days, strain for the soft sound of snowflakes hitting the windowpane. The clock is ticking in the next room. The blazing fire crackles and pops. I feel a low rumbling. Is that a train? No... "Chris! Is that thunder??"

We are experiencing a rare phenomenon. Thundersnow. At first, I don't believe Chris when he tells me this. Thundersnow? Yeah, like thunderstorm, except that it's snow instead of storm. But I can't deny the weatherological facts. It is snowing. And it is thundering.

Wikipedia, the all-knowing internet encyclopedia, tells me that there really is such a thing as thundersnow:
Thundersnow, also known as a winter thunderstorm or a thunder snowstorm, is a rare thunderstorm with snow falling as the primary precipitation instead of rain. It commonly falls in regions of strong upward motion within the cold sector of extratropical cyclones between autumn and spring when surface temperatures are most likely to be near or below freezing. Variations exist, such as thundersleet, where the precipitation consists of sleet or ice rather than snow.

I am wowed by the creativity of God. Who would have ever thought to mix thunder and snow? It's as if God said, "Ta Da! Announcing snow!" So not only do we have the uncommon appearance of snow, but it has also come in an even more uncommon form. It almost makes the 6-8 inches of accumulation we're supposed to get worth it.

We have bread and milk. We even have hotdogs and lunch meat. We have candles, matches, firewood, and flashlights at the ready. Hot chocolate and marshmallows are calling. The world we live in has shut down and it is just us and the thundersnow.

The heavens are sounding the glory of God; the arch of the sky makes clear the work of his hands. Day after day it sends out its word, and night after night it gives knowledge. There are no words or language; their voice makes no sound. Their line has gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world (Psalms 19:1-4).

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Out To Lunch

Yesterday, I was down in the basement switching the laundry when I overheard two cowboys tramping down the hall.

Cowboy Eli motions to the open basement door with his gun, "There's a woomin down thar."

Cowboy Jake drawls, "She's the cook."

Cowboy Eli pokes his head in the doorway, "Wellll, she's not cookin'."

Brief pause.

Cowboy Jake's voice drifts down the steps, "Yeah, well, really, she's just the housekeeper."

Really, it's time for me to go out to lunch!!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

A Little Sumpin' Sumpin

* Autumn has her first tooth. It came through on Valentine's Day.

* Savannah lost her first tooth. It came out a little over a week ago.

* Eli went to the ER Sunday night. But he's fine now. He had an allergic reaction (we think to peanuts - by breathing them). He swoll up with hives. But he's fine now. And he's taking meds for a week that make him hyper. Joy.

* Jacob wants me to post something about him, too. Ummm... Oh, yeah, last week at his basketball game, he got 2 steals and almost made a basket.

* And I might as well say something about Seth. So he won't feel left out. That is, if he could read. We bought him some strawberry heart peeps, and he doesn't like them. Crazy kid.

* Oh, and Chris has officially shaved off his goatee for good. He is still a very handsome man!

Hurry, Hurry, Hurry

So, even though they don't have to transition until June, many of the television networks will be going digital today. One of our local public channels even has a countdown going on... at 11:59 and 30 seconds pm anyone who has a TV with an analog signal (rabbit ears) will forever not be able to watch their programming. Only those who have "transitioned" to digital - either by purchasing a new TV, subscribing to cable, or buying a converter box - will be able to watch TV. So, are you ready? Or are you going to be left in the dark... (doom, doom...doom, doom)
We use rabbit ears to get our TV channels. Since we live in a large city, we are able to receive all of the major networks, 2 different public stations, and a handful of other channels. And we are "not ready" for the switch. At least, according to the media. Over the last few months, as the news anchors and sponsored commercials have been counting down the days until my screen turns to snow, I've actually laughed. It's just kinda funny to me to think that life might be over if I actually have to experience even one day without a TV signal. Maybe I won't even be able to breathe... AAAGGHHH!!
I'm sure at some point we'll get a converter. But we're not jumping just 'cause the government says to jump. We'll get it when we're ready to. And when our TV signal turns off, we might just actually start being intentional about what we watch. We might go to the library and check out movies we've been wanting to see but just haven't found the time for yet because we've been zoning out in front of whatever happens to be on. We might try some of those free RedBox codes. And please don't even tell me we won't know what's going on in this world. As if all of the news we hear is from the TV! Um, hello, everyone knows there's other ways to know what's going on... And to tell the truth, we haven't actually watched the news on TV in the last week anyway. Plus, now many sporting events are streamed live over the internet - and the ones that aren't, well, that's just a good excuse to go on a date to Smokey Bones (hint, hint). I've always wanted my kids to watch the good ol' cartoons like Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, Road Runner, Superman, Popeye - and now on Saturday mornings, they can because they won't be busy watching My Friend Rabbit. And when we eventually do transition, in our own time, they can go back to watching Jane and the Dragon and be the richer for it.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

A Coco-Nut Shell

The Bahamas was truly a place of rest for us. Chris and I have never been to the beach together without our children or a youth group. It was almost weird to not have to constantly be on the lookout for wandering kids! We went on the nature trail on the island of Coco Cay in the Bahamas; we saw native wildlife such as lizards and chickens. We fell asleep while sunning on the white beach. We saw striped blue and green fish darting around the coral in the turqoise blue water. We spotted large crabs walking sideways on the beach rocks. In Nassau, we bargained for souvenirs in the straw market. We saw the pink police building, the pink court buildings, the pink ministry of health building, the pink restaurants, the pink hotels. (I get the impression Bahamians like pink.) On the cruise ship, we ate "rich people" food - escargots, filet mignon, cherries jubilee, mahi mahi, almond souffle with orange sauce, chilled pear soup. We explored all 12 floors of the ship - which included a huge entertainment theater, 2 swimming pools and 2 jacuzzis, a climbing wall, a sports deck (basketball, ping pong, weight room), spa, a huge conference room full of art for the art auction, casino, 2 large dining rooms, numerous other restaurants and bars, library, business center, plus several levels of outdoor decks. The comedy shows were funny, the love & marriage game show was unforgettable :), the song and dance show was entertaining, and the SuperBowl atmosphere was great!

So that, in a coco-nutshell, is how the cruise went! We took lots of pictures and have wonderful memories. These are my 2 favorite pictures from the weekend.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Cruisin' By...

It has been a whirlwind of activity around here. Of course, it always is, but the wind picked up a little this week.

On Monday, Eli and I went to the dentist for our regularly scheduled cleaning. The dentist's office is a very popular place to go in our house. For one thing, he has a fish tank in the waiting room. And for another thing, there is a well-stocked prize box for well-behaved children at the end of the visit. PLUS, some of the dentist chairs have flat screen TVs overhead so you can watch Spiderman or ESPN or HGTV while you're getting your cavities filled. Very cool and fun. Eli was planning what he was going to get from the prize box while we were still driving to the dentist. The sticky slappy lizard shaped thingy that sticks to walls and car windows and hair. It's lifespan is all of about 10 minutes, but oh the joy it brings to little boys. By the way, you haven't truly experienced a dental examination until you've been lying in the chair with the dentist tapping your teeth with the sharp pokey thing and suddenly feel the chair start to sit up and the dentist waving his elbows trying to get the pokey thing out of your mouth before it pokes you and Eli behind the rising chair giggling his head off. Truly an event to experience.

Autumn had her 4 month checkup. She is a solid 14 pounds 2 1/2 ounces (75th percentile for weight) and 25 inches (90th percentile for height). She is one of the sweetest babies I've ever been around.

And now I sit here blogging when I should really be packing. Packing for what, you ask? Chris and I are going on a C R U I S E ! ! WooHoo! I never in my life thought I would get to go on one, and yet in 2 days I will be on a big boat cruising towards the Bahamas. You know, there are some places on earth that just seem so far away from my world. The Bahamas is one of them for me; that's the place that I grew up hearing preacher's joke that they'd been called to be missionaries to. It never felt like a real place. So even though most people on the cruise ship won't know it, I'm actually embarking on an expedition to see if the land of the Bahamas is for real. I'll let you know... I hope I remember to pack everything. I made a list, but I might have forgotten to put something on the list... Well, I always tell the kids that if you've got your underwear and your toothbrush then you'll be good to go.

Monday, January 19, 2009


I'm back! I've blogged mightily in my brain over the past couple of months, but have not had access to the internet. I will be posting soon... :) In the short meantime, I hope you enjoy this video... Kinda like Santa Claus - wouldn't it be a hoot if it were really real??