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Preview: It Just Dawned On Me

It Just Dawned On Me

Musings of a Christian, Mom, Reader, Ordinary Person.

Updated: 2018-03-20T07:37:26.571-05:00


This Aging Thing


I had no idea that aging would hurt this much.  Or be so life changing.  Or especially that it would be so darned...


Tonight we had supper over with and cleaned up by 5:30, so Les and I merrily headed to the living room, iPad and book in hand to spend the evening sitting on the couch, randomly reading, checking social media and watching "Sherlock: The Abominable Bride" which we had DVR'd.  (Actually Les did not have a book.  Or an iPad.  Just to be clear here.)

Guess what.  At 6:30, I was freezing, stiff from sitting still for less than an hour and so darned tired I could have toddled off to bed and slept till morning.

But since I had psyched myself up to watch Sherlock, I decided to take a nice warm shower, put on jammies and robe, get warmed up and woken up so that we could enjoy tv together for once.

So I limped to the shower, got warmed up, settled on the couch, started the show and Les fell asleep.

And then Sherlock was stupid.  I don't know why, usually I love him.  I mean the show...

And now at 8:30 I'm exhausted again.

Perhaps it's time for a little smackerel, to quote Pooh.  Did I tell you the cutest kid ever loooovvveeess Pooh? 
(Cause seriously what is a blog post without an adorable grandchild picture, right?)

Did I tell you I've gained X amount of pounds since August?  I try not to think about it actually.  I especially try not to think about it when there are dark chocolate brownies, or homemade cookies or cheese dip or...anything else worth eating.  The bathroom scale is gathering dust bunnies, but my pants are happy to inform on me. 

So no smackerel for me sadly. 

Now, while I was in the shower, many hilarious and/or spiritual truths passed through my mind but sadly the Sharpie that would be handy for recording deep thoughts on the shower wall was nowhere to be found.  Lucky for me, I'm sure.

Remember about six or so years ago when I would write this blog in my manic state at four in the morning?  Or at two a.m. after a frenzied bout of bridesmaid dress creating.  Or "daughter in college" paper proofreading?  What the heck happened?

Brilliance has left the house. 

Just Open The Book


Today was a day for relaxing.  A day to do nothing, be nothing and accomplish nothing. So I opened a book (or two) and flew way on the magic carpet made of paper and ink.  Words, punctuation, white space. Dotes and lines and squiggles.  All seem to be an unlikely means of traveling anywhere in space and time.  But through the power of language I traveled far. Today, I was the chosen one. I have the mark of God's favor on me but my family abused my innocence of its true meaning and power to use me as a political pawn. I was kidnapped, but soon learned that my kidnappers would become my most trusted friends. I fell in love twice. My first love was killed before my eyes when my enemy and captor sliced his throat . I can't forget how his blood covered my leather armor.  And I can't forget that he died protecting me and to ensure that I would one day be the ruler of the known world. There are few friends for a chosen one.  Betrayal can be found everywhere.  Many want to use my power. In the beginning, I don't even know what I am capable of.  It will take months and months of hardship and trials to learn what I can do. I traveled with four companions.  Two are trustworthy--my lady's maid and the captain of the Royal Guard. (He is my second love). Two are possible enemies.  But I have learned it is sometimes good to keep your enemies close. We escaped certain death by stealing a fishing boat to rendezvous with the brother of the captain of my guard. While sailing across the sea,  an unearthly tropical storm picked up our ship and left us on the shores of a deserted island that pulsed with the power of the ancient earth.  My companion and sometimes enemy, Storm, and I harnessed that power and brought it back to civilization with us.  It is this task that shows me he is worthy  I defeated powerful magicians and stopped the warfare between four kingdoms.I bought a child slave out of pity and she saved my life.We caught up with an enemy party and rescued Hector--my love, my advisor, my friend and the Captain of my Royal Guard, killing all 16 of the enemy. He was in bad shape, but I have learned enough of the power that I hold to heal his concussion, knife wounds and broken bones. My companions and I traveled for days to cross a mountain range before the snows began.  We were only at our destination for a few days when circumstances forced us to take again and the snows underground through abandoned mine tunnels, battling fear, exhaustion, giant scorpions, and  collapsing floors, only to discover that the exit to the caves was blocked with rock fall.  Enemies trapped me in a pit that was so deep that when I fell my leg was shattered and a broken rib punctured my lung.  Luckily, another chosen one heard my cry and used his power to heal my body.  I defeated powerful magicians and stopped the warfare between four kingdoms.  I ordered the death of some traitors and the lifelong punishment of others. I was married wearing the finest silk and the crown of the realm. It is hard and exhausting to be queen. Luckily, I can close the book and go back to being ordinary me. It was a wonderful, exciting, relaxing, stimulating day. Read Rae Carson's fantasy trilogy beginning with The Girl of Fire and Thorns."  You, too, can be queen--just open the book.  [...]

Upon Spying a Tiny Pair of Sunglasses Amongst the China


Look!  Tiny spectacles amongst the china. And a candy kiss to!  Chocolate and red, two of my favorite things!  

Those tiny red glasses sent my imagination soaring--wouldn't the little Hummel wannabe boy look cuter in them?

And chicks--they dig red glasses, no?

Wonder if my mom has noticed this yet!  

From the Top Bunk


I'm once again at Falls Creek Church Camp cooking for hungry teenagers till my body is ready to collapse into bed at night.  We had a cooking staff change and I drew the top bunk this year. I haven't slept in a bunk bed since college and Not surprisingly, everyone's first thought is "will I fall off?"  There's other things to consider though.  

First gear up mentally and physically to hoist your body up that ladder.  1 X 4 boards don't look so thin. Remember when you were in third grade and you scampered up and down the ladder from a bunk bed?  Yeah, well, likely your body weight has changed since then and the pain can be torturous to aged feet. 

Then look at the spot on the bed that you will flop onto once you reach the top. If sadly this space has been filled  with things like your iPad, magazines and camp mail, there are two choices. Hang on by your elbows and attempt to clear a landing point or resign yourself to climbing back down to move stuff, knowing that you must go through the foot pain process again. 

Have supplies handy.  Getting a tissue or lip balm or taking that nightly bathroom break is not so easy.  Be willing to wake your lower bunk mate up if everyone has been so kind as to go to sleep with the light on. Unless of course you want to climb the ladder again.  

So really, falling out of bed while sleeping isn't that great of a concern.  Falling out of bed while trying to get down is.  

Are You Afraid of the Dark?


That moment when you come into your dark, empty (hopefully) house and you see a light in your bedroom. 

And you wonder if the murderer is hiding in there or if once again you forgot to turn off the closet light before leaving for work that morning. 

True Wardrobe Confessions


I did it.  Today I bought something I swore I never would.I bought....Jeggings.  I used the self-check at Walmart and furtively hid them under the sweat pants that I was also purchasing.  Kind of like back when I was embarrassed to buy feminine products.  It's role reversal.  Used to hide those under a swimsuit.  Now I'd rather not let anyone know I'm purchasing anything like a swimsuit or jeggings so I tried pretended they were for my daughter. Pitiful, I know. I had a good reason actually for buying such a questionable (at my age and fitness level) item.  You see, awhile back I purchased an awesome shirt at a Real Women's Store downtown.  And it wasn't on sale. AND the name of the store did not end in Mart, nor did it contain the word thrift or discount.  Seriously, I'm getting wild in my old age.So anyways, back to this awesome shirt.  It is a little past hip length and flares at the bottom and did not look good with my usual loose fit slacks(perhaps should insert here formally loose fit, but that leads down a whole other rabbit trail that involves Nutella and fear of sweat).  Then I saw some skinny girl wearing a shirt fashioned in the same manner and it was with leggings (jeggings, whatever) and boots and I had an epiphany:  I have a long shirt!   I have boots!  And those types of pants are cheap, cheap!  And then I can feel better about the money I spent on the shirt that I have now owned for two months and never worn!  And perhaps I could look just like that skinny girl???  or not.So, reasoning and justification led me down the slippery slope of fashion to buying jeggings. Will I wear them?  We will have to wait and see.  I don't drink so there will be no false courage when donning this outfit.  You've seen those women with such thin legs their leggings are loose on them?  That's probably not gonna be me. The real problem with clothes is not the clothes themselves, but the body they must cover.  Fabric is a tad thinner than it used to be, so then the clothes must be a tad looser but unfortunately fashion seems to dictate 'fitted.' You know that story The Saggy Baggy Elephant?  I don't really recall the story line but the title seems to say it all.  I try to remind myself to check the back view before leaving the house but sometimes I'm in WalMart walking behind someone and wonder if they know they look like that and then I remember I didn't look in the mirror very well myself that morning.  Things aren't where they used to be if you know what I mean. So on that uplifting note, let's talk swimsuits.  It's not swimsuit season but aren't they the worst things to buy?  (worse than jeggings!)  In 28 (blissful) years of marriage, I've purchased maybe five swimsuits.  The last one was for a family beach trip to San Diego where thankfully the ocean was too cold for swimming. In spite of being well traveled, that costly item of apparel has only been worn 3 times. It usually goes on vacation with us, but seldom sees the light of day.  Or the chlorine in the pool, or the salt in the ocean if you get my drift.  (Ooo! another water reference!)  It is going to rot in the dark before it gets worn out from wearing! When trying on a swimsuit, I don't want a three way mirror around.  Or glasses.  Or an audience.  Beyond checking that everything that needs to be covered is covered, the mirror view is avoided.  I try to comfort myself with Parade and National Enquirer and all those other higher thinking pieces of newsprint at the checkout counter that show Hollywood type people frolicking around the Riviera and such places in their Speedos and bikinis and it turns out that even some of those thin ones should not be wearing so little in public.  If only the dressing rooms could be papered with a few of those? Perh[...]

Beyond the Door


I lie in my bed and talk to You.  But my mind wanders.  As I pray, thoughts distract me.

I see canvas all around me.    Am I surrounded with curtains?  Or I am in a tent?
Far above my head is an ornate brass pull.  If I can only reach high enough to pull it, what will be revealed?

Would it be the vast inky blackness of the night sky, studded with glittering stars
The infinite forever of the universe.  Will the darkness still hide You from me?  Or will I hide in it?

Or would I find the rolling ocean, whose depths hide wonders that man has never seen?  Would it be the froth and roll of the tides and waves, occasionally spitting out a glimpse of You, but shielding the true wonder that You are far beneath the foamy green depths?

Beyond the canvas door would there be endless rolling plains of golden grass, waving in the wind, calling me to step boldly into the unknown?

What will I find if I leave the safety of my tent?

You are calling me to come explore Your glory, beckoning for me to leave the safety of this canvas cocoon I have built around myself and telling me I have enough faith and enough bravery to explore the world because You are always with me.

Could the universe light up with flashes of light--shooting stars, fiery comets and planets in motion, reflecting the glory of You?

Can the sea become as still as glass, allowing me dive into its depths and explore the green water and see the vastness of Your love?

Can I leave the tent behind and stride into the great and endless expanse of grass, relying on You for safety on my journey--following to find, just over the hill, green treetops that indicate refreshing cool water, where I can linger and rest with You?

Give me courage as I gaze into the night sky, when I plunge into the ocean sea and as I wander on the endless plains.

Give me the courage to know that You are there, out of sight, but still beside me, encouraging me to leave my safe nest, to pull the curtains back, to reveal the vast, infinite glory that awaits.

I've Been Reading...


I'm sure you're surprised.  I've not been blogging.  Unfortunately since the coming of the iPad, the computer has been shunted to the side.  Not the iPad is unfortunate--I love it.  But even with a bluetooth keyboard, blogging is much less convenient. Today is the last day of Summer Break.  (insert crying and gnashing of teeth here.  You might even include writhing around on the floor but I'm trying to stop that)  Yesterday, the next to the last day before I have to report for school was spent being miserable alternately on the couch, my red chair and in bed.  Summer flu--horrible.  So I didn't really feel like crying and all that because of the end of summer break.  I was crying for a different reason. And by the way (this might be too much information) no one tells you how important Kegel exercises are when it comes to throwing up.  That's all I've got to say about that.So about the books.  I've read tons.  Lots of Kindle freebies.  Lots of sequels to Kindle Freebies that I had to purchase for a small amount of money (Unless you add it all up and let's not, ok?).  Thrift shop and garage sale purchases.  Also a few Advanced reader copies from publishers.Zondervan (Christian Publisher) has a relatively new Young Adult book imprint, Blink.  The books are not "Christian" but are a great way for public and public school librarians to get their hands on great stories from a Christian Publisher.  I get monthly emails from them with choices of books to request!  I love it.  If you like YA books or know of a teen that does--sign up and read away! Aquifer by Jonathan Freisen is set in the future where water is scarce and those who control it control everything.  Luca knows that someday he will take over his father's duties--he is the son of the Deliverer who is entrusted with the survival of the world by knowing the way to the underground Aquifer where he appeases the ratlike miners who control the world's water supply.  Luca's father disappears and he finds himself thrust into a role he isn't ready for.  Luca's inheritance reveals the true nature of perceived friends and enemies.  He discovers knowledge that is kept from the general population to keep them subdued and he also finds (of course) that he is stronger, braver and smarter than he thought possible. Reality Ends Here by Alison Gaylin is the story of Estella Blanchard and her family who are the stars of the reality show "Seven is Heaven."  I thought this might be a fluffy "Hollywood" piece but was pleasantly surprised at the elements of mystery and the depth of some of the minor characters.  It includes a lot--a Christmas gift from a long dead father, a surprise friendship with a boy band star, sibling relationships, an attempted murder and high speed car chases.  And did I mention bedwetting and wrestling matches? I received both of these books free to evaluate.  I must admit I'm a bit weary of the futuristic, dystopian direction of Young Adult Fiction but I did enjoy Aquifer and plan to purchase both of these novels (if I ever get any funding) for our school library.I've got more books to read and review so I'll stop here.By the way--it's 10 am and 72 degrees here on my back porch in Oklahoma.  What?  After the drought and heat we've had for the last three years, I was afraid Aquifer might become a reality but at last we've had rain and unimaginably cool temperatures!  Yay!    So I'm sitting here watching hummingbird wars, listening to the fountain in the pond, admiring the neighborhood squirrels gymnastic ability and wondering why I can't get rid of those darn moles whose tunnels are making my birdbaths list to the side. [...]

When I Buy Second-Hand Books


I've never heard of Cinderella's Garden by W. Macneile Dixon(image)
But I'm a sucker for maps on the end papers and book plates!  

You do this, right?


When it's time to go on a trip, don't you fantasize about the cute accessories you could take with you that would be so fun to make?

Do you spend hours on line looking for a template, then give up cause of course, there is plenty of time to look and make it later?

Do you decide that you're really not in the mood to make anything anyway and you can be satisfied with the same old bland stuff everyone else has?

Do you decide the last minute that of course you need a cute patchwork neck pillow for the plane and then be glad you thrifted those random blocks of quilt squares that were not enough to do anything with except make this?

You don't?  


I do!  Now I have an adorable (yes, it is isn't it?) neck pillow to take on our Ireland trip.  I hope I don't lose it.  

Side effect--it kept me busy instead of worrying about all the storms in the OKC.  Not that I didn't still worry but I didn't sit in front of the tv being confused about where the storm really was in relation to my loved ones and I prayed while I sewed.

Oklahoma is still getting pounded by Tornadoes!  Please pray the weather settles down.  I was hoping for a cool, wet spring.  And it has been cooler and wetter but stormy too!

Whom Can I Fear?


9  Sadly, our little baby didn't make it.  When the kids went to the specialist, there was no heartbeat and Sarah was induced a few days later.  Their regular OB/GYN was kind and compassionate and encouraging for future children.  The nurses were wonderful and said they hoped they were on duty for the next birth that would be in much happier circumstances.  In the midst of this, Les' aunt passed away and an uncle had heart valve replacement surgery.  My nephew graduated from high school and I'm in the throes of 'end of year' inventory and school activities. Social media has provided a convenient way to spread information without the dread of repeated phone calls. We've posted verses for our own encouragement as well as for other hurting people.This has been awkward and weird.  We are not used to being on the "prayed for" end of prayers.  We have been called inspirational for our faith.  We don't want to be inspirational.  We don't want to be seen as religious.  We don't want to just be posting tried and true phrases as nothing but words.Each new day has brought a decision or a circumstance we wish our children didn't have to deal with.  And yes, they are adult children.  (I read not long ago that a parent is only as happy as their saddest child and that has certainly been true.) Because of rules that govern hospitals, they issued a birth certificate.  Jake and Sarah chose to name their daughter Faith.And that name pretty much sums up what has sustained our family through the last couple of weeks. Faith is all we have.  Faith is all any of us have.  People are human and weak.  Their bodies fail.  Friendships change.  Emotions make us unreliable.  Time and distance hinder real communication. Thankfully, God continues to give me encouragement through His word.  I told you in the last post that I have been reading "Jesus Calling" for my morning devotional.  Each entry includes verse references that I have been looking up and writing out in a journal since January.  I've read these verses before--they are familiar words.This has just illustrated to me how important it is to be in the Word so that when trials come and you need these verses, you can clutch these well known words close to your heart and be ministered to.Faith is all we have.  Les and I were talking about how we believe that everything is God's will but why is it that God's will can be so painful?It's a conundrum.  A loving God, creator of the universe, concerned with the minutia of my (and your) life that allows tragedy, trials and troubles to fall upon us.If you can accept the plausibility of a virgin birth, if you are a believer of the resurrection of Jesus from the grave, then all you can do is accept that all those promises in the Bible are true.  If you can't believe wholly and without question in the first two statements, then the wisdom and instruction found in the Bible will be probably be meaningless. (not that we can't question God--He's big enough to handle questions, anger, doubt and fears--after all, He created us and knows what we are feeling and thinking)We don't have to understand it.  We waste our breath trying to explain it.  The best thing we can do is exercise our faith and believe.God is always with us. (Exodus 33:14)His grace is sufficient. (2 Corinthians 12:9)He always works for the good of us (Romans 8:28We can find rest in Him (Matthew 11:28-29)We can trust Him (2 Corinthians 1:8-9)We can always give thanks (1 Thessalonians 5:18)We don't have to be thankful for our circumstances and we don't have to find happiness in them.But we can be thankful that God is there with and for us in all of them. And we can find joy in [...]

Joy in Trials


I recently finished the Beth Moore study "James--Mercy Triumphs.".  There were many life lessons to be learned and applied in this book but the theme and the verse that continued to come up in my life--on Facebook, in other Bible studies, was that of James 1:2

Consider it pure joy my brothers 
whenever you face trials of many kinds, 
because you know that the testing of your faith 
develops perseverance.

Well.  Really.  Who wants to keep hearing that?  Was it a warning, a message, or just a theme that happened to be in all the media I was being exposed to lately?

I also recently read Ann Voskamp's book One Thousand Gifts  about finding joy wherever you are, whatever you are doing, whatever circumstances you find yourself in. She describes how we must look for and can find joy in the midst of mountains of laundry, sick children, and hurting people. Take her "Joy Dare" by clicking on this link and find out how to give yourself One Thousand Gifts before the year is up.  But remember--you are giving the gifts from you because they are simple, sought after gifts from God.

Ann Voskamp emphasizes that you must hunt for joy in the midst of chaos.  James assures that we will find joy in trials.  My daily devotional from "Jesus Calling" and Bible reading has centered around relying on God step by step, one day and one moment at a time.  

Today we've been called on to put our lessons to practice.  We've been looking forward to the birth in September of our first grandchild.  Today, Sarah and Jake went to the doctor for the ultrasound to find out if we should buy pink or blue.  Turns out we still don't know.  The ultrasound showed a lot of fluid around the baby's brain, heart and liver--the doctor has given a preliminary diagnosis of fetal hydrops.  This can result in death of the newborn shortly before or after delivery.  

Our hearts are broken for our children.  We have relatives with serious illnesses.  We have friends who struggle with health and family issues.  You probably have things in your life that Satan is using to attempt to steal your joy and hide the fact that God is always there by our side in whatever situations we find ourselves in.

Will you please join us in prayer as we strive to find joy in our circumstances?  

Thank you. 

From the Wind


The calendar says its Spring but the weather is not convincing me. We had snow and ice, rain and hail, thunder and lightning and were under a winter weather watch and a severe storm warning all on the same day!

The wind blew down some treasures. A delightfully preserved oak leaf and some dried up sycamore seed pods were on our driveway this evening. They reminded me a bit of shrunken heads.

Snow Days


We have had three days off from school now.  The snow storms have started with rain, which freezes, then gets covered with snow so it's kinda difficult to drive.  Today it's true blizzard conditions with still lots more white stuff to come--The wind is wild and all the roads are closed round these parts.

It has snowed quite a bit more since this picture was taken.  My butterfly bush behind the birdbath is completely flattened now.  The crepe myrtles are dipping into the pond.  It's not terribly cold so the snow is wet and heavy.  Les and I went and knocked some snow off a large evergreen bush which usually houses a bunch of birds in bad weather.  The top was all sprawled out and there were no birds inside.  I love this bush because it blocks our 'town' view somewhat and makes our backyard feel more secluded.

There's a roast on and lots of firewood.  All the electronics are charged and so far the tv has stayed on mostly.  Les had to go clean it off twice and he sprayed it with Pam the second time and that seemed to do the trick.

Our baby Molly (married and 20 years old) is stuck with her husband at their house with no electricity.  They can't get the wall heater lit but they do have hot water.  It's an old house so the amount of insulation is dubious.  I feel bad that I didn't encourage them to come here last night and stay.  But then they would not get to experience the fun and excitement of pioneer living!  They can talk about the Blizzard of 2013 someday to their grandchildren!

If you need a simple little craft to distract your mind for a bit from blowing snow, here's a little activity for you:

Tattoo a banana!  Of course you will need some bananas....our stores are closed and they are cleaned out anyway when people were preparing for the Snowpocolypse.  

But anyways, just take any kind of blunt but pointy object--and trace your letters or picture or whatever you like on the banana skin!  Within a few minutes it will start to darken and your secret message will appear!  It just darkens the skin, not the fruit, so the banana is still yummy and edible.

Go on--try it!  You know you want to! 

Television? Why?


Not the news.  Definitely not the News.  I can get all the depressing information I need from the headlines of Yahoo, and MSN.

Lifetime?  No.  I once watched a movie on there.  Or perhaps three.  But anyway, I determined from that vast amount of research that all Lifetime Movies are about pregnant teens, abused wives, murderous mistresses, cheating husbands, and tragic lives. Oh and kidnapped children and people with diseases of which they will soon die.

Sports.  You've got to be kidding me.  We have a plethora of ESPN type channels, a barage of hockey channels, an inundation of football channels.  Plus all the sports on the regular channels.  I like Olympic sports--some things.  Like Ribbon dancing.  Which is probably not a sport.  I like Olympic Gymnastics.  I like Thunder Basketball.  But I hardly ever schedule anything around a sport unless it is to avoid it.  Except for Thunder Basketball playoffs and I'm not sure what happened there but I got a little manic and crazy about it.

I used to like Glee.  Then they got all about sex on every single show.  I still like the music part with the musical theater staging of the songs.  Just not the story lines. I work with teens.  I'm not living in a hole.  I know that teens are sexually involved with each other and such.  And it's wrong.  Wrong, wrong, wrong.  They have enough problems just growing up and adjusting to the real issues of life without adding sex to the mix. And sex has become way to casual--They (many of the real live teens I know) don't have any qualms about hooking up with someone right away.  It's kind of like sharing a coke or something.  Or so it appears to me.  But how will this casual use of each others bodies eventually affect them?

So, not tv shows with teen characters.

The Travel channel--seriously, who can afford those vacations?

Cooking shows--nope, nope, nope. They make me cook. and shop for food. And especially food with cream and butter and sugar and chocolate. And sometimes Nutella.

HGTV--I'm dissatisfied with my house, my yard and my fireplace surround. And don't get me started on those yucky tiles in our bathroom.

So I can't watch tv shows with food or home decorating.

I guess I'll just stick with books. There's this one series by Sarah Graves called Home Repair Homicide. And I like those culinary mysteries by Diane Mott Davidson. There's recipes in the back! And last month I read a terrific football novel called Pop by Gordan Korman. I used to really love Harlequin Romances (back when they were romances, not how to novels) and my favorites were set in Foreign countries.

Oh, the irony, the irony.

What's That Noise?


I come from a long line of hearing impaired people.  A great uncle received one of the first if not the very first cochlear implant.  Our family reunions are very loud and are a great place to peddle hearing aid batteries!  Can anyone explain to me why these kinds of genes are not watered down?  People get skipped with beauty, brains and sense but it seems that things like ultra white skin, bad knees and hearing loss just run thickly in the blood!

I had quite a few ear infections as a child and started to notice in high school that people needed to repeat themselves.  I've tried to avoid the whole thing be becoming an excellent lip reader.  (which, by the way is quite useful in school....not that I would blackmail or abuse the talent or anything.....).  But it's starting to get annoying and I'm tired of asking people to repeat everything and oh well, I can't see, my joints hurt and my hair color has to work really hard so why not go for the gusto and embrace aging with all my money.....

So two weeks ago I got hearing aids.  I'm not sure what to think.  The world is extremely noisy!  My Coke fizzes really loudly.  The lid rattles on the dish in the microwave.  The ticking of the wall clock is a nuisance.  Eating is a wearisome, noisy affair!  The microwave beeps at two different pitches.  A student writing scritches his paper, clothes are noisy, shoes are clompy and the fans on the computers and the heaters and everything else are just plain too loud.

But I still can't hear people speak that well.  The sound is kind of tinny and all those other sounds are still too loud.  Perhaps the audiologist or whatever he is can adjust this.  A face to face conversation is much improved but is someone behind me needs assistance, I have no idea anyone is even speaking to me.

I am driving my husband crazy with "What's that noise?" questions!

Improving the 'just ok'


My husband loves canned biscuits and canned cinnamon rolls. Me--not so much.

Tonight we were wanting a little sweet. He baked up some of those cinnamon rolls.

I figured out how to improve upon the mediocre.

Much better!

What was I thinking?


I thought this hexagon quilt pattern looked like fun and it was in a fast and easy quilt book. Hah!

Time consuming and careful stitching! At least I used scrap fabric!

A Charlie Brown Christmas


I'm not sure why but I'm just not in the mood to blog.  I don't think about it, I don't check my blog feed.  I don't understand.

Perhaps it's a hormone deficiency?  I blame everything else on that.

But here's a little Christmas video from us to you.  We are Baptists.  No one in the video has taken dance lessons.  It was just fun and silly!


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Jingle Bells


Shotgun shells,
Rabbits run away
I can't recall the rest of the lyrics to that version except they may or may not have included "Santa Claus is dead" but I prefer to think there were just further allusions to hunting wild animals. You know. Pheasants and such. And perhaps reindeer "snicker."

But anyhow....we have the trees out and fluffed and in place but no ornaments yet. Only some little Norwegian Folk dolls purchased last year at an after Christmas clearance sale, a faux antique baby shoe and these terrific shotgun shell lights crafted by my brother in law. He only sliced a few fingers in the construction of this design element. Perhaps that's why he used the red casings.

And this might be all. Les has play activities ev-er-y single solitary day for the foreseeable future.

You know, if I could just quit my job and become a trophy wife (yes, I know they are generally younger than I and the husbands are generally older than Les and yes they are considerably richer than the both of us) then I could always have a clean, beautifully decorated (from thrift stores) home!

The trophy husband should consider it, don't you think?

Hello--It's November?


Seriously--I didn't realize that it was almost Thanksgiving until this past weekend.  I don't watch tv but looked up a few times to notice the Black Friday commercials that were on.

Seriously?  I mean--isn't it just October 20something????  I vaguely remember Halloween but I was in the church building in Christmas play practice while all the Fall Festival activities were going on in the parking lot.   We've been working on the the Christmas Musical since August and since the temperature has remained in the 70s, it's hard to believe that the actual holiday season is upon us.

Just because we are working on Christmas stuff, doesn't necessarily mean that I'm ready for it!

I'm thankful, thankful thankful that the holidays are near.  Because that means I'm just a few days away from NOT teaching this particular reading class.

It's so exasperating.  We are researching 80s hair bands.  Not headband hair bands but rock groups with big hair.  Yes.  I'm vainly attempting to have some fun.  But.

The paper I passed out yesterday had 'Your name" on the top line and "band name" on the second line.  One students seriously asked "What do I put here?" (pointing to Your Name")  sigh.......  But these are the same ones who can't find articles about Martin Luther King, Jr. in an alphabetical list because he is not in the 'M' section, so what did I expect....

And spelling!  Much hilarity ensues when people spell 'Artist' wrong.  They leave out the letter S.  Luckily, this was soooo funny that they were laying their heads down on the table instead of laughing out loud.

Just two more days....two more school days till Thanksgiving.

I can do it.

Because I don't want to sound totally crazy teaching (attempting) research and reading skills with rock bands, I am tying in cultural phenomena (walkman, video, electronics music, computer graphics) with the musicians.  And I picked the bands.  I did not include Motley Crue to the dismay of one young man who pouted and didn't want to do anything if he couldn't do them.  wahwahwah....  



We aren't know-it-alls. But we do know where to look it up.

Have you read..


No Easy Day by Mark Owen? It's the account of the assassination of Osama bin Laden.  I'm really not a fan or war books or of technical things or even of real events (so I live in a fantasy world, what about it?) but I really liked this book.  The author interspersed the preparations for the mission with the story of how he came to be part of the special forces that performed such amazing and delicate duties to protect our country and freedoms.  He never came across as self centered--just a man with a job to do.  He reminded me a little of Dirk Pitt in the Clive Cussler novels--yeah, I'm a hero, but someone's gotta do it and I guess it will be me.  I was fascinated with their gear and impressed with the preparation that goes into a highly secretive and important mission.  Did you know that before the SEALS dropped in on Osama Bin Laden and his family, they had spent many weeks rehearsing the event and even had a to-scale family compound built to practice on.  With the help of special intelligence they knew the daily habits of the family, what animals were kept in the compound, the neighbors and even which direction the doors swung in the buildings!  I highly recommend it.  The book was a quick read and I was never bogged down by too much technical information or repulsed by too much description of close quarter killing.Intersections by Mark T. McCord.  This is a 'now and then' novel set primarily in the Philippines.  The story begins with a group of grad students on their way to visit Corregidor Island.  The main characters of 'now' are Lisa and Brandon, an unlikely pair who are drawn together by their mutual passion for history.  As they explore the battle site and underground hospital on the island, they are given a first hand look at ow the past was played out when they discover a box full of love letters from a nurse and soldier who were stationed on the island.  As they read the letters, the 'then' portion comes into play as army nurse Kate and infantry officer, Robert transport the reader into the past to know firsthand the fear, exhilaration and selflessness that transpired in the battle for Corregidor.  A friend of mine wrote this book and I purchased and read the book more as a courtesy than a desire to learn more about this WWII event.  But as usual,  I was drawn into the story--It was a wonderful and inspirational love story but more than that, it was a fascinating tour and lesson of a place and time of which I knew little.  I've also been reading a lot of free novels on my Kindle.  Now don't go looking for any depth or theme here--just entertaining and free (at the time) novelsThe Bad Luck Wedding Dress by Geralyn DawsonThe "Green" series by Judy Christie.  Gone to Green is the first one.The Old Buzzard Had it Coming: An Alafair Tucker Mystery by Donis CaseyThe Rose of Winslow Street by Elizabeth CamdenMidnight Marriage by Lucinda BrantThe Widow of Larkspur Inn by Lawana BlackwellThe Princess Bride by William Goldman--not free but so worth the money--if you like snarky, silly fairy talesA Daughter's Inheritance by Tracie PetersonAnd a bunch of other stuff!  I've been reading, not blogging, obviously! [...]

Mini cheesecakes


I was watching Unwrapped on The Food Network.

I got the munches.

I ate a mini cheesecake with a Oreo on the bottom and Nutella on top.

It. Was. Good.



My family had a lovely gathering over Labor Day weekend.  Almost everyone was at my parents at one time or another.  Unfortunately not all at the same time, but when your kids begin to grow up and have their own schedules for work and school and such, it becomes near impossible to get together.

The visit consisted of many dogs, shooting doves (Les got one! Jake got two! We didn't have to eat any!), game playing, drinking coffee, family gossip, feasting and hilarity.

Les and I didn't get to stay over on Sunday because of course, he's a music minister and hello, they kinda like him to be at our church on Sundays!

But Sarah and Jake got to go with the rest of the family to the little country church I grew up and was married in.  They got to sit next to my grandma and Sarah sent me the best gift--these pictures!

You may or may not have guessed that they did not sing from spotchy hymnals so Sarah included this original "before editing" picture.

Isn't this the most beautiful?  I'm not sure my grandma would agree, because she spent alot of time in her younger years hiding from the sun, coloring her hair and using quite alot of Mary Kay products.  

But these hands have made alot of meals, changed a bunch of diapers, caressed fevered cheeks, swatted naughty children, killed snakes (in her living room), worked cattle, wrung chicken's necks, painted pictures, sewn garments and quilts and folded in prayer......

There's no end to the works of love these beautiful, time worn hands have done.  I've been blessed with the effects of many pairs of hands like these in my own and my husband's family and I'm sure you have at least one pair of hands in your family that are as lovely as well.  Aren't you thankful for them?