Sunday, December 28, 2008


I turned 60 this year...the age where you are most definitely on the down-hill slide (an assumption based on the fact that I don't know any 120 year-olds). The point where you can no longer pretend that you will "clean up your act" next year. The point where you need to start eating and acting like an adult (well, at least eating like one).

It has long been a tradition in our family to make cut-out Christmas cookies. When I was a young mom, I loved it so much that I developed my own recipe because I couldn't find exactly what I wanted. Things of beauty, they were. Melt-in-your-mouth they were. DELICIOUS!

This year, since we weren't with the girls for Christmas, I decided to bake the cookies and mail them to Seattle. I just could not, though, force myself to put Crisco in them. Just reading the word made my arteries shudder in fear. So I substituted "lite" Parkay. You could tell a difference, but they were still pretty tasty.

For home, though, I decided to really "clean up" the recipe:
Splenda instead of sugar
Egg Beaters instead of eggs
"lite" Parkay instead of Crisco and margarine

INTERESTING best describes the outcome. However, I did glean some wisdom from my experiment (and adventure):
1. Above substitutions do NOT produce a dough suitable for cutout cookies. (no prob...flat, round cookies will do just fine)
2. Above substitutions do not even produce a dough that resembles dough...ADD MILK
3. The term "sticky bread dough" is a necessary part of any vocabulary used to describe results of this adventure.
4. Eye-balling "walnut sized blobs of dough" to be made into spheres will NOT produce uniform sized balls of cookie dough.
5. Rolling them in Splenda does help the stickiness, but putting the bowl of Splenda on the burner is NOT the best idea unless you want to do some cleaning of the drip pan.
6. Taking the rings off BEFORE rolling the dough into balls is a much better idea than taking them off AFTER said rolling has been done.
7. Finished product does not even VAGUELY RESEMBLE sugar cookies. They resemble...uhhhhh....ummmmmm....welll, they DON'T resemble sugar cookies!
8. Adding this recipe to "recipes that turned out well enough to make again" is a great idea...NOT!!!!


not actually related to the cookies, but just FYI, when the spout of the soft soap has "build-up" in it, the soap tends to squirt on the shirt instead of into the hand.

And now I think I'll go have a "cookie."


Sunday, November 23, 2008


I'm moving into the 21st century...have created a page on Facebook. Supposedly I can import my blog. Let's see if this works.

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Went to a luncheon today for the Methodist District Conference. During the program, the praise team led the group in 3 songs. During one of them, the instruments stopped, and it was just the group singing, filling the room with such beautiful sounds. It transported me back to the college days of Baptist Student Union retreats and the overwhelming feelings of love and being blessed. It transported me back to a retreat at HEB foundation camp...driving through the river to get to the camp...hiking in God's glorious hills...swimming in Blue Hole, ice cold and crystal clear...sleeping on bunks with such sagging springs that you had to do major climbing to get up and out of the bunk. And then...on the last night...sitting out under the stars with a few dear friends and the guy I was crazy about...and suddenly we all started singing "God Is So Good." That has been a special song to me ever since.

It transported me back to an awesome Conference...Mission Atlanta, Georgia. A huge auditorium of young adults all singing the song written especially for the occasion. I still remember the words. ..."oh help me Lord to find my God's world today." (Funny, that's what we're all still searching for, isn't it.) An amazing conference...strong feelings of conviction...such life shaping events.

And then I returned to the present...back to the "here and now." I found myself awash with the longing to just once more be able to revisit and recapture those amazing feelings when the heart overflowed with love and the conviction to be totally selfless was overwhelming. I guess I will just have to settle for the nostalgia...the nostalgia and its accompanying mixed and gratitude for having had the experiences, but sadness that I will never again be able to experience them. I've often heard it said that you can never go home again. I know that's right, but in this case, I would love to try.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Nope, I'm not trying to tell you to shush...I'm talking about all the great fall colors as the mums begin to bloom. I just love it when there is "a touch of fall in the air."

Today was a good day. It wasn't overly cool, but it was overcast and blowy...kind of like "blustery" I was able to convince myself that fall is close by. And indeed I think it is. The high temps for almost all of next week are in the 70s!!!! I LOVE IT!

I have some cool pumpkin pictures to show you...just as soon as I figure out which memory card they're on. I rounded up all of my memory cards tonight to look for a batch of missing pictures, and now I'm not sure which one has the pumpkin pictures on it. But never fear, I will find them!!!!

Slideshow came together nicely. The really nice thing about showing it on the big screen at church is that you don't see all the "noise" and imperfections that show up on the computer monitor. That's close enough to "editing" the pictures to make me happy! Only glitch to the finish of the project was when my slideshow program informed me that I don't have a CD drive on my computer. Uhhhh...yes I do.'s right there!!!! [pointing to the CD drive] But alas, there was no convincing it, so I had to resort to Plan B. Now that all of that is behind me, I can work on some of my other projects that have been waiting in the wings.

Other tidbits from the week:

I was quite annoyed on Thursday night to find out they had killed off Warrick Brown (CSI) without consulting me first. I have seen every episode of that silly show---MULTIPLE TIMES; surely that should have given me some special privileges, don't you think? BUT NO! I had to find it out when they aired the show just like everyone else....HOW RUDE!

I have decided our house is haunted. I wouldn't have been able to make such a brilliant deduction had I not been faithfully watching "Hauntings" [TV show] for several years now. I have learned soooo much. What other explanation could there be for notebooks that disappear and directories that turn up in the wrong pile and missing batches of pictures????????????? YEP...HAUNTING HAS TO BE THE ANSWER!

And now, since it is past midnight, I shall bid you a fond adieu.

Lovies and huggies to all!!!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008


The jury has returned. The verdict is in. There is no longer any doubt whatsoever. It is totally and completely out of my ability to do a project simply!!!

Yep, I'm in the midst of yet another of my projects. (Not my idea this time, but I once again failed to say "no.") You know the projects I'm talking about. The ones where it is supposed to be "no big deal"...just a little something...keep it simple, but I am on my third day, full-time--and it isn't finished yet.

"Just a simple little slideshow," they said. Just a little something to show a bit of the church's history; something to be played before each of the services one Sunday during the stewardship emphasis. But simple isn't in my vocabulary. "Little" never applies to my projects. Audience or not, it doesn't matter. And so I am compiling a slideshow which pretty much shows the complete history of the church. Pictures of the progression through the years. Pictures of the buildings and the leaders and the people. Researching as I go, of course. But it'll be cool when it's finished, even if I AM the only one who ever sees all of it.

I'll let you know when the smoke clears and the dust settles.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


This has been one of those of those days when technology and I have locked of those days when technology wins by leaps and bounds.

Need to rip a track from a CD? No problem...should take about 5 minutes. It took 3 hours!!!! (new programs and hidden commands, in case you're wondering!)

Need to send email to a friend...a friend to whom you send mail all the time? BOUNCY, BOUNCY...4 TIMES!!!

Need a new title line for a new web page? No have a template and notes. But where the heck are some of the settings listed on the notes???????????

Need bad weather for your NOA weather alert machine to go off? Heck NO!!! You just have to be breathing on days like this, and it will "come alive"...not with warnings but with nice loud static!!!

I can hardly wait to see what the rest of the day will bring!

Thursday, September 25, 2008


One of my favorite things to do each night is to read my niece's blog. She writes beautifully...and says a great deal with her words. Tonight's blog was about the power of words, which of course started me on a trip down Memory Lane...all the way back to some of the nicknames I had in elementary school. I assure you they weren't terms of endearment. I remember them vividly to this day. They did indeed hurt my feelings...and they did indeed have an influence on the way I felt about myself.

Her blog went on to say that that is often carried to excess these days with folks being "offended" when no offense was intended. And I agree with her. There is a lot of absurdity these days.

But I do think we need to be ultra aware of the power our words have on those who hear them...while at the same time being willing to "forgive" those who have a tendency to accidentally put their foot in their mouth...such as the "someone" who created this blog!!!

Friday, September 19, 2008


Wow, September is 2/3 gone. Fall arrives officially next week, again without my being ready for the big day. (have I mentioned that I'm still trying to get my "ducks in a row" so 2008 can begin???)

The past month has gone by in a blur. We have family reunioned, CLEANED (and I mean REALLY CLEANED) the house except for my closet, the computer room and the laundry room, and had a wonderful visit with daughter and her beau. It's been a great time with lots accomplished. I will try diligently not to let it become habit.

While daughter was here we visited the Brown Ranch in Christoval which is a Wildlife Habitat with lots and lots of hummingbirds. We hiked, we watched the birds and deer and wild turkeys, we played games, we cooked outside, and we had a fabulous time. Oh, and we (using that pronoun very loosely) took lots of pictures. I can definitely see a return visit happening in the spring!!!

Today I spent the day updating the church's website. I was about a month behind in doing that. You just can't get good help anymore! All is spiffy and up-to-date now...all ready for the beginning of the fall season.

Tomorrow I will do whatever I decide I'm the furthest behind on...probably the stewardship slide show that is due in a couple of weeks. I still cling to the fantasy of being totally caught up on my projects, but I'm not at all sure I'll live that long!

Our weather has been beautiful. Our animals are all HEALTHY! I have a clean house. I'm slowly catching up on projects. All is right with the world.

Have fun on your wilderness hike, ACM !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, CS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

lovies and huggies to all!!!

Friday, August 29, 2008


After reading about vacuums and features, reading about a million on-line reviews, and shopping for 4 days, I have finally purchased a new vacuum cleaner. A thing of beauty, it is!!! Lots of cool features but moderately priced. BLUE! I have read the manual and taken it for a test run. NOW...I'm going to go set it in the middle of the back bedroom and tell it to "do its thing!" IT'S ITS TURN NOW!!!!!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008


I've been composing postings for my blog during the past few weeks, they just haven't made it to the blog. Minor detail!!! Let's see if I can summarize things.

I enjoyed the Olympics. I even stayed up until the wee hours a couple of times watching volleyball. You'd think the teams could have whipped out their wins a bit earlier, wouldn't you! I think the Olympics went very smoothly. I love all the athletes coming together in harmony. I love striving to be the best you can be. I don't like the heartbreak for those who lose a race by .01 of a second. And...I can't help thinking about how many people could be fed...and housed...with the 40 billion Beijing spent to "show off."

The public schools have started. For the first time in I can't remember when, I didn't buy any school supplies. I have never outgrown my love of school supplies, especially when I get fantastic deals on them. In fact, you could probably make a pretty good case for saying that I'm addicted to them! But...I still have a "stash" of folders (8 cents each, I'll have you know!), notebook paper (50 cents a package), and spiral notebooks(some ridiculously low price). We have no students living here anymore, the dogs just don't seem interested, and I can only use so many spiral notebooks!!!

Took our weekly trip to the vet today. Older dog who has had multiple strokes has a swollen leg and fluid-filled place on chest and wasn't even coming out of the doghouse this morning. I was fearing another stroke had caused her to fall out of the doghouse and twist or break her leg. Fast forward to this afternoon...she was limping but getting around. Major infection in leg...antibiotics and steroids...but not another stroke!!! That is a good thing.

Right now I am thinking that...
There's no way my "reunion projects" will be finished before the reunion--
I will NEVER be finished editing pictures--
My house will never again be totally clean...not EVER!!!!!

lovies and huggies to all!!!!!

Saturday, August 9, 2008


New cartoons posted August 9, '08.


I am such a silly ol' lady! Thursday night I found myself misty-eyed because the series So You Think You Can Dance was ending. It's a TV show, for goodness sake...but through the past several months, I've become quite fond of some of those kids.

I do realize, though, that the reason I enjoy the show so much is because of things that have nothing to do with the show itself. First of all, the dancing takes me back to those days when both girls took dancing. There are memories of recitals and getting costumes in order and trying to get the hair to look just right and scurrying to get costumes changed between dances...and, most of all, memories of bursting with pride because my daughter was the cutest, best dancer on the stage. (only a TAD prejudiced there!!!)

The other endearing quality of the show lies in the fact that younger daughter also loves it and is often watching it at the same time...all the way across the United States. We have fun talking about the dances and the dancers and how our opinions often aren't even close to those of the judges, not to mention those of "voting America."

I was sad to see this season of shows reach the finale, but all good things must come to an end. Now...BRING ON THE OLYMPICS!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008


I thought this was interesting AND informative. It's also a great reminder that God can use anyone, any time, any place!

Sunday, August 3, 2008


Isn't it funny how sometimes we don't realize how much we've missed something until we get it back. I have spent the day making my new laptop "mine." I have all but one program installed and working (the "working" part is a definite plus!). Tonight I put my .mp3 files on lappy. They have been on an external for about a year now because I had maxed out the computer I was using. Something had to "go" they did...all the way to the external drive on the table beside me. But...when I reloaded them tonight, it was as if old friends had come home. I had missed Andy without realizing how much. And I had missed all the others who used to serenade me while I was "computing."

I remember another episode along these lines. Younger daughter left for college in the fall of 2002. She (and her sister) had been my "focus" for the previous 18+ years. My "baby." Everyone (including her!) said I would have to get a life of my own now. And "get a life" I did. In fact, I was quite proud of how smoothly I transitioned into an "empty nest." No tears. No distress. Just branching out to do more volunteer work (so I would have an excuse NOT to clean house!!!). But then it was October and she was coming home for her first visit since she left. I was delighted. I knew she would be so proud of the way I had handled her absence. But what did I do when I saw her? I got all teary eyed the minute she walked through the door! I just hadn't realized how much I had missed her.

She lives in the "Great Northwest" now, thousands of miles away. She doesn't walk through the door very often anymore. But in her absence, I will be enjoying the wonderful reunion Andy and I are having.
(that's Andy Williams, in case you're wondering)

lovies and huggies to all!

Friday, August 1, 2008


I have decided that God is most definitely smiling down on our little household! Jelly Bean made it through yesterday just fine.

This morning Roy and I headed out and bought some super, duper heavy-duty dog clippers and proceeded to shave both of the dogs. It's not quite as good of a job as a professional groomer would have done, but it looks pretty dern good if you ask me!!! We have decided that if we are ever on the brink of starvation, we can just open a pet shaving business!!!!

JB was a bit squirmy, and we finally let her go when the majority of the hair was gone. Taffy went to sleep and slept through the whole thing. As soon as Taffy was finished, Bean decided maybe it wasn't so bad after all and came back over and plopped down at our feet for some more lovin' and shavin'. It was a fun time for all of us!!!

Not only that, out of Heaven only knows where, we are having rain today...with a predicted high of 95 instead of the triple digits predicted last night on the news.

I don't know if this will solve all of the problems...triple digit temps which will return tomorrow are still triple digit temps, but now I feel like I have done everything in my power to make our sweet Jelly Bean comfy and happy!

Thursday, July 31, 2008


To me, decisions are one of the most difficult parts of life. We have 2 of the sweetest dogs ever in our back yard. Golden Retrievers...with some Chow blood in them. The mother is 15; the daughter, Jelly Bean, is 13. Last summer JB started having strokes. We tried to head off the heat stroke this year by getting her "summer do" in April. But the hair has grown back...and she is too shaky to stand for grooming...and temps are consistently hitting triple digits. JB has started wobbling again, thankfully not as badly as before. I'm wondering if it's time to let her go. The part that worries me even more than letting her go is what will become of her 15 year old mother, Taffy. She won't know what to do all alone in the back yard. And...of course...the wobbles started right after dear sweet hubby left town.

So, for now, I'm going out every 30 minutes and pouring water over JB. She is covered in mud, but that's ok. DShubby will be back tonight. Tomorrow he and I are going to get "wild and crazy" with the scissors and get rid of some of that hair. I bought cippers a few years back, but they aren't strong enough for her coat.

Anyway, think of us as we try to decide when enough is enough...and what constitutes "quality of life" for the dogs. They still have each other...JB is still eating just fine...and walking around--not overly steady, but she gets where she wants to go. I have spent years feeling guilty that they weren't allowed to be house dogs because they are so loving, but my allergies just wouldn't allow it. So now I guess I'll shift gears and feel guilty about whatever I choose to do concerning JB.

Pets bring an amazing amount of love to a family. Unconditional love. It's the end that's so difficult.

Monday, July 28, 2008


One of my younger daughter's friends has just begun an eleven month mission trip with World Race. She is blogging regularly. She writes beautifully, and her photography is outstanding. It is such a blessing to be able to share what God is doing through her. I especially liked the quote below:

"Ministry is not an act, it is the movement of the Holy Spirit in and through willing and prepared hearts. Ministry is to speak in Spiritual Love." -Nat

She also incorporated the quote below in her blog. I think it is a good one.

"Spiritual Love will meet the other person with the clear word of God and be ready to leave him alone with His word for a long time, willing to release him again in order that Christ may deal with him... Spiritual Love will speak to Christ about a brother more than to a brother about Christ. It knows that the most direct way to others is always through prayer to Christ and that love of others is wholly dependent upon truth in Christ." --Baunhoffer


Yep, today has been a good Sunday. I got up at the crack of....9:45. (but in fairness to myself, I must mention that I was up until 1:15 a.m. finishing photo projects for OTHERS). Anywho, before I let myself sit down I did the first 5 loads of laundry! Such an industrious soul, I am, I am. Of course, there are still 5 more loads that need to be done, but we just won't mention those. I have at least gotten all of the necessary clothes washed in case dear sweet hubby has to go to Dallas this week for work. Can't send him off with dirty clothes in his suitcase, now can I.

Speaking of dirty clothes in suitcases, did you know that that is a very efficient way to pack???? Just ask my daughters. They both load all of their dirty clothes in their suitcase and head for home (not very often, of course, since they live all the way across the U.S....but when they do come.) It is their way of telling their Mom that they still need her!!! What's that???? There is another explanation? I don't want to hear it; just let me have my moments!

I will leave you with today's ASTUTE OBSERVATIONS:

1. Cell phones are wonderful and easy to use...such marvels of technology. But they are cranky, too. Just plugging the cord into the phone doesn't seem to be enough to make them happy enough to charge. They expect the other end of the cord to be plugged into the outlet. PICKY, PICKY, PICKY

2. Cathye needs to write down her nuggets of wisdom when they happen because by the end of the day chances are good she will have forgotten. I'll let you know tomorrow if I remember the other Astute Observation from today!

lovies and huggies to all!!!

Saturday, July 26, 2008


Miracle of email program is all set up on my new computer!!! HALLELUJAH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! It's beginning to feel like MY computer now. Still squishes my legs, but that, too, will be under control one of these days.

One of my video projects is finished, too.

Now what will I use as an excuse to not do the laundry???????????

Thursday, July 24, 2008


Have I mentioned how much I hate setting up a new computer????????????

Tonight I decided I had procrastinated enough. It was time to get the email up and running on my new lappy. I tried about a week ago, but I transferred in one too many files from the old lappy, and all came to a screeching halt. So...I uninstalled and deleted everything and let the computer "age" a bit. Tonight I started all over again.

Tonight's first try of a new way of doing it failed just like the last one. Another uninstall & delete. Reinstall. It was already configured to pull in my email. weird, weird, weird And other weird stuff was happening. All sorts of error messages which prevented me from transferring in my folders of mail...and which kept the program from closing. I was totally baffled...AGAIN!!!

"When ... what to my wandering eyes should appear??????????"...but a little ol' window telling me the program needed to be configured. I have yet to figure out what it was reading that first hour or so, but once I configured this "new" window, it let me transfer in my folders.

Will I ever understand these machines??????????? PROBABLY NOT!!! But email is once again up and running on a new laptop. Now, where the heck is the folder that holds my bookmarks???????????

Wednesday, July 23, 2008


There's a quiz show on TV, "Are You Smarter Than A 5th Grader?" I'm sure I'm not.

At our house this week we're creating a new game show, "Are You Smarter Than Your Dog?"

The larger of our 2 inside dogs has had some sort of intestinal disturbance for the past 4 days. First two days brought lovely, SMELLY diarrhea in the middle of the night...on the carpet. Dear sweet hubby (dshubby) cleaned it up both times without even awakening me. Needless to say, that triggered a visit to the friendly local vet on Monday!!!

First Cathye and dshubby explained the situation to the vet. Next the vet said it didn't sound good because of the color of the ... ummmm ... deposits. So he prescribed 4 pills for Sable (the 20 pound patient). 4 pills is not a problem; 4 pills, 3 of which are the size of a pill for a horse, are!!!

For years Sable has taken her morning pills in a bit of bread, so that should work. I carefully wrapped the pills in little pieces of bread. First couple of pieces went down fine. But no such luck with the last 2 pieces. The bread went into the mouth...the bread came out. Ah ha thinks I. If I crush them, she will scarf it right down. YEAH, RIGHT! We did finally manage to get enough down for it to be acceptable.

To make a long story short (you're welcome!), since bread failed on Monday night, on Tuesday morning I called the vet. Try lunch meat. Sable loved the bologna...hated the pills. By crushing them we once again got enough down to be acceptable.

I dreaded the nighttime round. But...I made little bologna sandwiches for her (so I could "hide" the pills in the bread), and she was happy as a lark.

Ah ha... JOY...I have found the secret. Wednesday morning. Bread & bologna in...pills out on the floor. Another call to the vet. Try peanut butter; try crushing them. Ahhhhhhhh...why didn't I think of that!!!! Crush pills...mix with peanut butter...first two bites are great...last one is spit on the floor. Again...enough to be acceptable in my humble opinion. But now she's "on to" my peanut butter trick.

I'm out of options (except, of course, cramming it down her throat and holding her mouth shut); I'm NOT out of pills. So here I sit already dreading the evening doses.

Am I smarter than my dog? Uhhhh...that would be a negative.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Travel. Yep, that's what we did. Yesterday dear sweet hubby (later to be known as dshubby)drove to the little town about 60 miles from here where my Grandma (dad's mom) lived. We were in search of her house...the rent house she owned where my other Grandma (mom's mom) lived for a while...and the house where my aunt lived.

There was a miracle right off the bat. Even though I hadn't been there since I was a young girl, I was actually able to remember directions well enough to get us to the house. I was quite impressed with myself. I sorta thought you crossed a railroad track somewhere along the way, but there wasn't one anywhere in sight, so either I imagined that part of the directions or it has been removed in the past 45 years. The "visit" was kind of bittersweet. Needless to say, the house wasn't as massive as I remember, but it was still large. What was really disappointing was that the little rent house was all boarded up...obviously ignored for many years. Seeing it all again, though, was great!

I wandered around taking pictures, half expecting the police to show up asking me what in the world I thought I was doing. I also had my story of Grandma all ready in case the person living in the house was home and saw me. Come to find out (from my conversation with the lady who lives across the street), the little man who lived in the house died a few months ago, so I felt free to roam and snap pictures to my heart's content. Dshubby entertained Burton while I took pictures. I didn't take as many as I was too hot outside...but I'm delighted to have the pictures in case they decide to flatten one of the houses.

I must admit that since then, I have been thinking that it would be kind of cool to find the daughter who now owns the two houses and the land to see if I could go inside both of the houses. But that will have to wait for another day. For now I'll just be content revisiting all the memories that were triggered by that trip.

Sunday, July 20, 2008


Had one of those "ultimate shopping" experiences last week. I went to HEB to check for a couple of their special items that I remember fondly. What I found was certainly MORE than I was anticipating.

HEB is remodeling--turning into a mega superstore, it appears. But they have not let that slow them down. In fact, they have arranged things to enhance your shopping pleasures.

For those who love puzzles, you can begin by snaking your way through the construction crew's equipment or by maneuvering your car around the roadblocks on the main street. Next you can play "hide and seek" with all of the items you have previously purchased in that store; everything has been relocated. You can play dodge ball, too. Well, actually, it would be more accurate to call it "dodge the stockers" as they try to fill the shelves without colliding with the customers.

Last, but certainly not least, you can enjoy a "sing along" as you shop. In some areas you can sing loudly with the 60's music playing on the intercom. In other areas you can make up your own music, the beat determined by the rat a tat tat of the jack hammer as it breaks away the concrete in the middle of the store, allowing for the formation of huge mounds of dirt. (Perhaps for a rousing game of "King of the Mountain" once the barrier tape is removed!)

What more could anyone want???? A mask and earplugs, perhaps!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008


Have you ever noticed something and thought, "wow...that's cool...I wonder when they added that/built that or whatever" ... only to find out it's been there for several months--or maybe several years?

Cathye: They've added a traffic light at the intersection of Southwest and Southland....finally. We've needed that; I've always had to watch really closely to be sure I turned in the right place.

Friend: Uh...Cathye...that's been there for several months now. But maybe you don't go that way very often.

Cathye: Yeah...that's it! I only drive down Southwest 2 to 4 days a day.

Definitely a "WELL, DUHHHHHHHHHHHH" moment!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Sadly, not the first. Probably not the last)

Monday, July 14, 2008


Yesterday afternoon I watched the DVD of the concert in Beijing showcasing Andrew Lloyd Webber's music. In fact, I watched it twice. The music was phenomenal! While I was soaking in all the gorgeous music (and singing along with some of the songs!), my thoughts drifted to the subject of "gifts and talents." I do truly believe that everyone is talented in some way, even though so many people feel totally worthless.

There were 2 main trains of thought along this track. The first one was how incredibly talented some people are...the musicians...the vocalists...ANDREW LLOYD WEBBER...and how very blessed we are that they have chosen to share their gifts to enrich our lives.

The second thought was the memory of my journey through the maze of "gifts and talents." I love music. Love, love, love music! I love contemporary Christian music. I have been to many church services where the music was more inspirational than the sermon. (shhhhh...don't tell that to any pastors.) I wanted in the worst way for my God-given talents to be musical. I wanted to share the songs that meant so very much to me. I wanted to bless people with beautiful piano music. But God had other ideas. I have an "ok for choir if standing beside a strong singer" voice, and I never had the opportunity to take piano lessons as a child. For many years hearing all of that wonderful music made me sad. Sad because I so wanted to be able to produce those sounds but couldn't. I missed a lot of joy holding onto MY idea of what my gifts should be.

That seems to happen to a lot of folks. Lots of quotes about it. Lots of stories. But what it boils down to is this: God's ideas aren't always the same as ours. His timetable is almost NEVER the same as ours. But He gives each of us awesome gifts and talents and blesses us as we share them with others. It took me a long time to "live" that truth. I hope you're smarter and quicker than I am.

Sunday, July 13, 2008


One of the advantages of going to the Saturday contemporary service at church is that it leaves my Sunday mornings free. This morning I headed out (all the way to my next door neighbor's yard)to take a few pictures. I just love sunflowers; they are so bright and cheery!!! Here are a few to bring you some Sunday Sunflower Smiles.

Lovies and Huggies!!!!

Friday, July 11, 2008


Now and then things happen that assure me that my "suspicion" that I'm clueless is indeed true! This morning as my friend and I were doing our morning rounds at the mall, we noticed that there was a long line in the middle of the mall...strange considering the stores didn't open for another 45 minutes. Well, second time we passed the line, my curiosity got the better of me...I stopped and asked one of the "residents" of the line what was going on. IPHONE..2ND GENERATION or whatever it's called. She said some of the people had been waiting since 10:30 last night...outside, no less. I mean, I can understand that happening in the big cities...but in our little podunkville??????????? Did I have any clue the new IPhone was coming out today???????????? uhhh...that would be a negative.

But, I did get a really great laugh when one of the news stories on our evening news alerted everyone to the fact that there is no 3G service in our little town...or in any of the surrounding towns, for that matter. I won't lead you to believe that I have a clue as to what 3G service is (I apparently wasn't listening very closely during the news), but I did grasp the reality that part of the IPhone "stuff" doesn't work here. Well, duhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh !!! Don't you think that perhaps they could have figured out that little tidbit of information BEFORE all of the phones were sold?????????? Hmmmmmmmmmmm...perhaps I'm not the clueless one after all!!!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


I'm just as honest as the next guy; in fact, possibly more so than most. Not being told the truth has always been one of my pet peeves...just ask my children. One of the main reasons I hate lies so much is because once told, it calls into question the credibility of all other comments that come from the person who told the lie. At least in my mind, it does. All of that means, I suppose, that I "embrace" truth.

Gotta tell ya, though--there are some truths that I don't WANT to "embrace." I've started walking with my friend at the mall. Does it affect how I feel and how much energy I have??? Uh huh. Have I always been told that exercise gives you energy??? Uh huh. Have I proven over and over again that it's true??? Uh huh. But I don't WANT to "embrace" that "truth!" I want to feel the benefits without doing the walking. Possibly I can "alter" this truth to make it more to my liking??? Probably not??? Well DRAT and RATS!!!

Have I also always been told that what I eat affects the way I feel...that the more carbs I eat, the more I crave carbs??? Uh huh. Do I feel better when I "clean up my act" and eliminate sugar and massive carbs from my diet??? Uh huh. Do I still want junk food and sweets??? UH HUH!!! DANG IT ALL!!! Another "truth" I don't want to "embrace."

I've hit the age when I need to "grow up" and be careful what I put in my mouth. I need to accept the fact that sitting in the recliner blogging on my laptop doesn't count as "exercise." I have to acknowledge that the eggs and milk in homemade ice cream do not make it a nutritional breakfast food. I guess I have to accept that truth is truth is truth, and if I "embrace" part of it, I have to "embrace" all of it. I just need to "bite the bullet" and do what I know I should do. BUMMER...and...SIGH!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


I don't know about you younger folks, but now that I'm approaching my 6th decade of life, I am becoming more and more "friendly" with COMFORTABLE! I used to love a challenge...brainstorming and working my way through problems was a "rush." Bring on those "new and improved" items! Let's figure out a new and more efficient way to do things! Now, however, I'm joining the camp of "if it ain't broke, don't fix it!" Just let me reside in comfortable familiarity.

I have a new laptop. It is a thing of beauty, it is. It also weighs a ton, it does...but that is fodder for another post. It will do all sorts of things that I didn't even know existed. That part is ok...I don't mind slowly expanding my horizons. Don't want the old brain cells to die! But why, I ask you, did they feel obligated to change the things that were WORKING PERFECTLY WELL on my old computer??????

Apparently "save" and "save as" are no longer "in Vogue." If I edit a picture, I now "make copy of" it and type in a new name...processes handled perfectly well by "save as." Perhaps it is trying to save me from myself. Trying to prevent the destruction of my original. Well I'll have them know that I already took care of my originals. Never, never touch my originals. Nope, nope, nope. I'm not sure yet if it forces me to make this new copy of any edited picture, or if it will just let me overwrite the old file by closing it without changing the name. Whatever is happening, one thing is for won't happen by SAVING it 'cause that option doesn't exist.

I think I'll like this new creature...but there will be some grumbles and mumbles along the way. I've always hated the phrase "but we've always done it this way." But...perhaps we could use it JUST THIS ONCE!

Monday, July 7, 2008


The 4th was a quiet one for us. We kind of spread out the celebration. On the 3rd we listened to the local Patriotic Pops Concert on the radio rather than fight 30,000 people to see it "up close and personal." The night of the 4th we drove a few blocks from the house and watched the fireworks display going on at the lake. Last night we went to the Dinner and Patriotic Concert at church.

In one of the photographic forums I read, it gave instructions on how to photograph fireworks. It was kind of a joint effort. My new remote control for my camera didn't work the way the instructions said it was supposed to, but Roy figured it out for me. Here are a few samples of the festivities.

lovies and huggies to all!

Sunday, July 6, 2008


When I am filled
I can point the way,
When I am empty
Nothing moves me,
I have two skins
One without the one within.

Who/what am I?

(answer at bottom of blog)

Friday, July 4, 2008


Many thanks to all who have sacrificed so that we can live in a "free" land. May God bless you richly!

Thursday, July 3, 2008


This young man's name is Anthony Gargiula. As far as I can figure out, he was 7 when this video was made. I think he's 9 now. This morning was the first time I had heard him, and it sent chills up and down my spine.

Tuesday, July 1, 2008


How many of you remember when "Survivor" appeared on our TV sets??? It was the "new horizon" for television. Something new and fresh. A strange oncept...entertainment with "your average 'John Q. Public.'" Perhaps there had been others that had gone before, but "Survivor" seems to be the show that brought the concept into the "mainstream media." I remember hearing some of my friends talk about the participants as if they were personal friends...and about changing their schedules so they could watch every episode!

Close on its heels have came such series as "Big Brother," "American Idol," (I think huge segments of America came to a screeching halt when American Idol came on the screen, too!), "Dog, the Bounty Hunter," about a million reality crime shows, "Funniest Home Videos," "The Deadliest Catch," "Dancing With the Stars," and one about America having talent.

Through these Reality shows (or is it actuality????) you could choose a spouse, a model or a great decorator. You could even see "America's Greatest Dog!" (I'm sure none of them can be as GREAT as Burton!!!) There was some entertainment value in some of them...some pretty amazing talent, in fact. There was also be nice let's just say "lack of talent or entertainment value"

Have I watched any of them????????? Uhhhhhhh...[whispering here] that would have to be a "yes." Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh...don't tell anyone! I must admit to you that I watched what I think was the second season of "Survivor"...because one of the participants was a young man from a nearby town...and besides that, HE WAS CUTE!!! But once he was gone, I kind of lost interest. I've seen several episodes of "Dog, the Bounty Hunter"...including the one with a gorgeous Hawaiian wedding. And, truth be told, I am totally addicted to "So You Think You Can Dance"...supposedly America's #1 rated something-or-other which holds the record for the most response calls! Younger daughter and I started watching it during season #2, and it has been tradition ever since...even when we are thousands of miles apart. (How in the heck do they dance in those high heels????????????)

I gotta tell you, though, that the trend seems to have gone over the edge. We now have such rousing shows as...

Hell's Kitchen
The Verminators (oh, joy...I just love seeing dead rats!)
Well, you get the idea. Pretty much anything is fodder for the TV screen.

Let's make this an interactive post. Open the comment window and share your thoughts and confessions about Reality TV you've watched. And then...I think we all need to throw our hats in the ring and come up with suggestions of our own.

My suggestion for a new Reality TV show is...
Techniques for Chewing Toenails. (Just think of the possibilities.)

Other suggestions???

Saturday, June 28, 2008


Have you ever noticed that things are often not what they seem. Not just people, although that is often true. It holds true for happenings, too. Apparently this phenomenon has been prevalent through the ages. Why else would we have those wise old proverbs that tell is not to "judge a book by its cover"?????????

Tonight was one of those "real life" reminders of the truth behind the saying. About 4:45 this afternoon I was standing with towel in hand, getting ready to wash my hair so I wouldn't scare anyone when I went to church. Lo and behold, all of our electricity went out. It's really hard to reach our breaker box, so I did the next best thing. I threw my towel over my shoulder and headed out the front door, looking up...looking down...looking all around. Not sure exactly what I thought I'd find; perhaps a big electric pole "downed" in the middle of the street?????????? Nope...I didn't find any "tell tale" signs to explain the outage, but what I did find was my neighbor...coming around the corner of her house....looking up....looking down...looking all around! No electricity at her house either. No computers TVs with pictures...we might as well visit. So visit we did!!! We caught up on where all the family members are. We caught up on mutual friends who are ill. We laughed a lot.

What could have been a very annoying experience turned out to be fun and enjoyable. In fact, before the electricity returned about an hour and a half later, I had a chance to visit with another neighbor. More catching up. More laughing.

I'm glad the electricity went out. I'm glad the computers and TVs stopped working. I loved visiting with my neighbors. We should definitely do it more often!

Do I want to go back to the "days of old" when the distractions were fewer? Uh...I think I'll pass. The old body was getting a tad toasty without A/C!!!!!!!!! And I really MUST refresh my memory on how to get the car out of the garage when the garage door opener isn't available to open that door!

Friday, June 27, 2008


Have you ever noticed just how much more complicated things are in the late night hours or the wee hours of the morning? I've been playing with my blog...trying to get it all nice and spiffy for visitors...and for the life of me I can't find mp3 players that actually work. The ones I have on here used to work...I promise...honest...they played beautifully. But now they won't load. Bummer. They say "ready"...I click on the play arrow...and they start "loading." But they never FINISH matter how long I wait...believe me. So, I think I'll tackle this tomorrow. Mid morning. After all brain cells have awakened...and before the ones that were the early risers have finked out on me to go take a nap.

Sweet dreams!


'Tis a far, far better thing to check for ants BEFORE sitting down on the sidewalk instead of AFTER you have been sitting there for several minutes!

Thursday, June 26, 2008


Ahhhhhh...but I digress....what a wonderful phrase. So very, very useful when I discover that I have once again allowed myself to stray from the topic...when I have once again lost my focus....when I am exploring one of those tangents I quite frequently "go off on." My niece loves it, too!!!

Unfortunately, I think the appropriate term for right now is "regress" instead of "digress." In fact, I think I have regressed back to my "temper tantrum" stage. Not a full-blown tantrum, mind you. Just a bit of foot stomping and whining "I DON'T WANNA" in a somewhat annoying tone.

Last night I sat down and dutifully wrote out my "things I gotta do and projects I gotta finish" list. All nice and neat, with a nifty blank before each item on the list so that I can put a BIG check mark there when all is finished. A thing of beauty it is. So organized. So efficient. So fulfilling (once it is filled with BIG check marks).

A good night's sleep...a morning walk...time to tackle the list. Shall I start with item #1? I DON'T WANNA! Well, how about #2. I DON'T WANNA! Perhaps the third item on the list?? I STILL DON'T WANNA. And so went the afternoon...and evening. Did I put fabric softener in the load of towels waiting oh, so patiently in the washing machine? Uhh...that would be a negative. Did I accomplish anything on my list? NO! Am I totally clueless as to how I managed to stay busy all afternoon but cannot see anything accomplished. Guilty as charged. BUT, I am proud to report that I have this thing figured out. Go ahead and ask me, "Are there BIG check marks on your list now?"

YOU BET! I just went back and added the things I actually did!

Works for me!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008


How's that for a generic subject!!!!

Silly me...saying that I was going to start blogging right before Vacation Bible School and a visit from our younger daughter. Apparently a few brain cells escaped just before I wrote the last blog entry; they are still missing.

Now, to tie this eloquence to the title as all good authors/authoresses should do, let me just say that even though we have had 15 days of triple digit heat so far, we are free from triple digit temps this week. In fact, we have had a "cold spell"...all the way down to 95. I have been pondering buying a new sweater!

My niece just moved to Las Vegas. I fear I must report that some of her brain cells are already warped. She has joined the "club" that promotes the fallacy that "105 isn't too terribly warm when the humidity is low." me....I'm about to turn 60 and have lots of experience under the old belt (and let's not mention how much surface area there is in that belt)! I feel it is my duty to inform you that 105 DEGREE DAYS ARE HOT!!!!!! I don't care if the humidity is a minus 49 1/ is still HOT! Now, granted, it may not slap you up side the head and hang bricks from your body, but it is still HOT!!!!!!

Lemonade and A/C, anyone??????

Thursday, June 5, 2008


For the past week I have been mentally composing blog entries...but not a single one of them has made its way to my actual blog. "And why is that?" you might ask. I'm thinking it is influenced by several thoughts...but probably the most prevalent "reason" is because I'm just too lazy to do that late at night. The other "reason" is probably because I don't think anyone reads it, and I already know what I'm thinking about writing. niece has started a blog, and I have had a WONDERFUL time reading it and finding out more of what is going on in her life.

Therefore, I shall try this blogging thing again. I shall try to "wax eloquent" on the minutia of my days. And who knows...someone just might read it one of these days!

Sunday, May 25, 2008



This is an awesome song I stumbled across. It is a wonderful reminder of how much our prayers mean to our Military.

Artist: Ricky Skaggs
Song: Somebody's Prayin'
Album: My Father’s Son

Somebody's prayin, I can feel it
Somebody's prayin’ for me
Mighty hands are guiding me
To protect me from what I can’t see
Lord I believe, Lord I believe
Somebody's prayin’, for me.

Angels are watchin’, I can feel it
Angels are watchin’ over me
There’re many miles ahead ‘til I get home
Still I’m safely kept before Your throne
’Cause Lord I believe, Lord I believe
Your angels are watchin’ over me.

Well I've walked the barren wilderness
Where my pillow was a stone
And I’ve been through the darkest caverns
Where no light had ever shown
Still I went on ‘cause there was someone
Who was down on their knees
And Lord I thank you for those people
Prayin’ all this time
For me.

Somebody's prayin’, I can feel it
Somebody's prayin’ for me
Mighty hands are guiding me
To protect me from what I can’t see
Lord I believe, Lord I believe
Somebody's prayin’ for me.

What a beautiful reminder that it is up to us to be those people who are down on their knees!!!!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


...the marvels of modern science, that is. Well, actually, I'm not sure it actually falls into the category of "science"...but...did you know that they now have Lavender scented spray starch?????????????? Yep, they sure do. I was ironing away a couple of days ago and my poor little can of spray starch "gave up the ghost." So, I just trotted down to my handy, dandy WalMart to get another one. WOW! So many choices!!!! I mean, it has only been 2 or 3 years since I bought the last can (and NO, you're not allowed to speculate as to what that says about how often I iron!), and I now have multiple fragrance choices...among other options. I chose a nice, smooth Lavender scent, and it is actually rather nice. Nice enough to make me want to iron more often? Uhhhhh...I DON'T THINK SO, TIM! (shades of "Home Improvement" there) But...on those rare occasion when the metal (teflon coated, of course) hits the material, I shall enjoy the calming effects of the lavender. Oh...and it sprays much more evenly, too. I wonder when that happened????

Monday, May 5, 2008


Knowing that there are some things on which you can depend is usually comforting, don't you think???? It's kind of like having a security blanket in reserve. Kind of like being reassured the earth is still revolving on its axis.

I am pleased to announce, in an effort to add to the stability of the human race, that I have once again done my traditional job of installing a program on my computer. This cute little window popped up...offering me a update for my Real Player. Now in the past those little windows have been very annoying in the way that they keep appearing, so I decided to go ahead and let it install the update. I read all options carefully, being sure not to have it take over my computer completely. All went smoothly. I patted myself on the back. And then...........
a cute little window popped up asking me that I had installed Mozilla Firefox...I wanted it to be my default browser.

SAY WHAT????????????????????

Where the heck did that come from???????????????????????????????????

<> Yep...there are just some things you can depend on!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, April 12, 2008


Our big dogs got a new "do" on Thursday. A friend of mine owns a "small dog" grooming business, and she was sweet enough to let me bring in our two big Golden Retrievers for their summer haircuts. (That was going wayyy above and beyond...believe me!!!!) Turns out they are more Chow than Golden Retriever and had massive "winter coats" that were just like a blanket up next to their skin. I helped her; I mostly "stood guard" so the dogs wouldn't try to jump off the table, but I was also covered in dog hair by the end, so I at least LOOKED like I have been a vital part of the process! Thankfully, they are old and decrepit and were happy to just lie there. You wouldn't believe how much hair she got off of them. Their back ends were so matted she had to shave them down to the skin, but she was able to just comb the heavy coat out of the front 2/3 of each dog. They are so funny looking right now...bare rear ends and back legs...and fluffy heads and fronts. They look like lions!!! And...wouldn't you know it, we have had 2 super-cold nights since they went "nekkid" in back. It was in the 30's last night. Thankfully, they have a nice, carpeted dog house which I HOPE kept them nice and warm.

Saturday hugzzzzzzzz to all!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008


Man does not see what the Lord sees, for man sees what is visible , but the Lord sees the heart. 1Samuel16:7

The world sees us as we appear to be; God sees us as we really are. He sees our hearts, and He understands our intentions. The opinions of others should be relatively unimportant to us; however, God's view of us--His understanding of our actions, our thoughts, and our motivations--should be vitally important.
The nineteenth-century reformer Margaret Fuller warned, "Beware of over-great pleasure in being popular or even beloved." And her words still ring true.
Few things in life are more futile than keeping up appearances for the sake of impressing the neighbors. So do yourself a favor: don't even try to keep up with the Joneses. You've got better things to do--far better things-- like pleasing your loved ones on earth and Your Father In Heaven.

Dear Lord God, Please keep my eyes on you and your plan for my life. Thank you for seeing me as I really am, and Thank you for all your plans for my life. What a wonderful journey that you put before us! Help us to not care about what the world thinks but help us care only what You think.
In Christ Jesus Blessed Name we pray. Amen
from Hugs--Daily Inspirations for Women

Sunday, March 30, 2008


We have company coming tomorrow. I'm really looking forward to being able to spend a bit of time with family. My hubby likes it even better than I do, I think. The main thing he likes is that although I am basically a slob, I am a "closet slob" and don't want the rest of the world to know just how cluttered my house gets at times. When company is coming, I get all or most of those little things done that I have been ignoring for a really long time. For example...I got the last two family pictures framed and hung on the family wall in the den. The older of the two was from 2005.

We tried out the new carpet cleaner I purchased several months ago. It worked acceptably. Boy, was the water ever dirty. You don't think having 3 inside animals has anything to do with the dirt, do you? Hmmmmmm...or perhaps it could be the fact that we haven't cleaned it since before we moved into the house in '92? The old vacuum just doesn't get everything!

Oh also need to put a star on your calendar or mark this day in some way. I actually caught up on my ironing today!!!!!!!!!!!! Totally out of character for me!

I'm trying milk with ice tonight. Can't say that I like it. Wonder what Alyson sees in it.

It's getting close to the hour when I turn into a pumpkin (at least on nights before mornings when I have to get up early), so I guess I'd better put the old body to bed. Sweet dreams and hugzzzzzzzzzz to all!!!

Friday, March 28, 2008

catching up

I have just finished "catching up" on reading Diana's website. She has such wonderful things to say. One of her entries talks about "giving all" to God. I'm not there. I'm still having little spells of rebellion when I want to do what I want to do...nothing bad, mind you...but things that aren't on my list of commitments. I don't think it's wrong, but I do think I miss a lot of joy when I grumble over already made commitments instead of doing them joyfully.

It's late, and my brain is not being very cooperative, so I'll continue this another day.

hugzzzzzzzzzz to all,

Friday, February 29, 2008


A well-known speaker started off his seminar by holding up a $20 bill. In the room of 200, he asked, "Who would like this $20 bill?"

Hands started going up.

He said, "I am going to give this $20 to one of you but first let me do this."

He proceeded to crumple the dollar bill up. He then asked, "Who still wants it?" Still the hands were up in the air.

"Well," he replied, "What if I do this?" And he dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now all crumpled and dirty.

"Now who still wants it?" Still the hands went into the air.

"My friends, you have all learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth $20. Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled, and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel as though we are worthless. But no matter what has happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value in God's eyes. To Him, dirty or clean, crumpled or finely creased, you are still priceless to Him. Psalm 17:8 states that God will keep us 'as the apple of His eye.'"

THOUGHT: The worth of our lives come not in what we do or who we are, but by WHOSE WE ARE!
received online from Mikey's Funnies

Sunday, February 24, 2008


I firmly believe that time has sped up. 60 minutes just does not last as long as it used to!

All is well here. Would you believe yesterday's high was 84!!!! The thing that makes that totally weird is that yesterday was the rodeo parade. I have lots of memories of rain and COLD on rodeo parade days...and that was when the rodeo was still held in March. There was one year that it was so cold that the band director let the kids wear gloves for marching (something she NEVER allowed), and she let them stay on the bus until it was time for their band to begin moving. They were also having trouble that year with the lips sticking to the metal instruments. OUCH!

They have changed our rodeo to a two weekend event. I've been intending to look up the schedule in case the urge hits me to go take pictures of the stock show, but I heard on the news last night that the kids are showing the animals this weekend, so I'm guessing today is my last chance for that, and I'm in the middle of another project and probably won't feel the tug of "photo ops" strongly enough to leave it. (How's that for a nice long sentence!)

Hubby has a bad cold. He has even resorted to taking Tylenol and Benedryl, and he RARELY takes a pill. I offered to go help him this morning with the sound at church, but he said he can cover all of it without any problems. I made him take a bottle of Purell so he can sanitize his hands after he blows his nose.

My walking buddy and I walked on Monday...first time in 2008. We were amazed at the change in the Mall since we were last there (right before Christmas). Taco Bell has closed, the eyeglasses place near Beall's has closed (they were 2 really big corner stores), and there are several walls in front of what used to be stores. Dillard's and Chick-Fil-A and Penney's seem to be the only ones with really good business. hmmmm...well, perhaps the cookie store, too. There is a fast-food Chinese place now, but I almost never see anyone eating their food, so they may not last too long.

Circuit City has also closed. Best Buy seems to be doing well, though. I'm expecting REX (electronics) and Big 5 to close, but they're hanging on so far. The one thing that always seems to "make it" here is a restaurant. Apparently cooking isn't the favorite pastime of a large number of residents of our fair city.

Leave a comment when you get a chance.

Lovies and huggies to all!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Another week has whizzed by. I might be a little closer to being caught long as you don't look at any of the long-term projects I really should be working on. It keeps me off the streets...right?

I have taken a lot of trips down Memory Lane recently regarding Valentine's Day. I remember the Valentine boxes we made and put on our desks in elementary school. They ranged from plain and simple to all decked out with hearts and lace. There were small ones and ones that took up half the desk.

I remember how we "graduated" to the "much cooler" folders hung around the room when we got into the upper elementary grades. I remember the silly Valentines..."your teeth are like the stars--they come out at night." Some of the Valentines bordered on being cruel. I remember the class "rebel" who gave out those Valentines. I remember how surprised I was that the one I got from him wasn't at all what I was expecting. I don't remember if he got very many Valentines or not...and, of course, I never knew if the ones he got were kind or otherwise. Kids can actually be quite cruel. I hope he's doing well.

I remember the silly verses we used to make up. "Roses are red...Grass is green...Your mouth runs...Like a sewing machine." Actually, that was a fairly accurate description of me--I was quite chattye even back then.

I remember the excitement of getting candy attached to one of your Valentines...and you were indeed popular if you got a whole box of candy. I remember the year I got a little plastic mosaic art kit from one of the boys; I thought it was the grandest thing on earth...especially the fact that it was from a BOY!

(and... having nothing whatsoever to do with Valentine's Day... I remember the most popular boy in the sixth grade who "published" his "Top 10" list every week of the girls he liked. I never made the list, but my best friend made it to #10 a couple of times. Maybe I was "popular by association"???????????)

I remember candy hearts and chocolates and heart-shaped suckers. I remember the popular kids whose boxes over-flowed with Valentines, and I remember the twinge of anxiety that came with "nerd territory" as I wondered if the number of Valentines I received would be embarrassingly small. Bless the children who gave cards to everyone; bless the Mothers who MADE their kids give Valentines to everyone.

And now I'm all grown up...and I send out lots of Valentines...because I know it means a lot to be remembered and to know that someone thinks you're special...and because I remember days gone by. And, as I remember and ponder, I have...smiles for the caring and sensitive kids of days gone by. Smiles for the special friends in my life now. Smiles for a loving family. Smiles for God's unconditional love.

HAPPY VALENTINE'S DAY TO ALL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008


It is too, too true that time passes more quickly as we grow older. That certainly seems to be the case to me!!! I figure that once February 16 has come and gone, I should be ready and organized enough for 2008 to begin.

This past weekend was Youth Weekend at church. The youth are totally in charge of all 3 services. It was delightful, as always. I took digi pictures...but I was conservative...I only took 2,000 pics. Tossed 700 the first time through them. I'll probably end up with 300 or so good ones. I just love digital cameras!!! You can take all the pictures you want!!!

We had a brief shower this morning. I just love rain. I love the sound it makes on a metal roof, and I LOVE the smell when everything is fresh and clean. Hmmmmm...perhaps I should figure out a way to get it to rain inside to get my house clean?!?!?!?!?

Oh yeah...we had an interesting visitor in our driveway on Saturday.

It has no idea how lucky it is that I interrupted it's "dig" before it made it into the back yard with the two Golden Retrievers.

We're having crock pot chicken and baked apples for supper. Come on down!!!

Tuesday huggies and lovies!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008


A mom was concerned about her kindergarten son walking to
school. He didn't want his mother to walk with him. She wanted to give him the feeling that he had some independence but yet know that he was safe.

So she had an idea of how to handle it. She asked a neighbor if she would please follow him to school in the mornings, staying at a distance, so he probably wouldn't notice her.

The neighbor said that since she was up early with her toddler anyway, it would be a good way for them to get some exercise as well, so she agreed.

The next school day, the neighbor and her little girl set out following behind Timmy as he walked to school with another neighbor boy he knew. She did this for the whole week.

As the boys walked and chatted, kicking stones and twigs, Timmy's little friend noticed the same lady was following them as she seemed to do every day all week. Finally he said to Timmy, "Have you noticed that lady following us to school all week? Do you know her?"

Timmy nonchalantly replied, "Yeah, I know who she is."

The friend said, "Well, who is she?"

"That's just Shirley Goodnest," Timmy replied, "and her daughter Marcy."

"Shirley Goodnest? Who the heck is she and why is she following us? "

"Well," Timmy explained, "every night my Mom makes me say the 23rd Psalm with my prayers, 'cuz she worries about me so much. And in the Psalm, it says, 'Shirley Goodnest and Marcy shall follow me all the days of my life', so I guess I'll just have to get used to it!"

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


What, you ask, is "Butt Dust"? Read on and you'll discover the joy in a child's sincere originality. No adult is this creative!!

JACK (age 3) was watching his Mom breast-feeding his new baby sister. After a while he asked: "Mom why have you got two? Is one for hot and one for cold milk?"

MELANIE (age 5) asked her Granny how old she was. Granny replied she was so old she didn't remember any more. Melanie said, "If you don't remember you must look in the back of your panties. Mine say five to six."

STEVEN (age 3) hugged and kissed his Mom good night. "I love you so much that when you die I'm going to bury you outside my bedroom window."

BRITTANY (age 4) had an earache and wanted a painkiller. She tried in vain to take the lid off the bottle. Seeing her frustration, her Mom explained it was a childproof cap and she'd have to open it for her. Eyes wide with wonder, the little girl asked: "How does it know it's me?"

SUSAN (age 4) was drinking juice when she got the hiccups. "Please don't give me this juice again," she said, "It makes my teeth cough."

DJ (age 4) stepped onto the bathroom scale and asked: "How much do I cost?"

MARC (age 4) was engrossed in a young couple that were hugging and kissing in a restaurant. Without taking his eyes off them, he asked his dad: "Why is he whispering in her mouth?"

CLINTON (age 5) was in his bedroom looking worried. When his Mom asked what was troubling him, he replied, "I don't know what'll happen with this bed when I get married. How will my wife fit in?"

JAMES (age 4) was listening to a Bible story. His dad read: "The man named Lot was warned to take his wife and flee out of the city but his wife looked back and was turned to salt." Concerned, James asked: "What happened to the flea?"

TAMMY (age 4) was with her mother when they met an elderly, rather wrinkled woman her Mom knew. Tammy looked at her for a while and then asked, "Why doesn't your skin fit your face?"

The Sermon I think this mom will never forget.... this particular Sunday sermon..."Dear Lord," the minister began, with arms extended toward heaven and a rapturous look on his upturned face. "Without you, we are but dust..." He would have continued but at that moment my very obedient daughter who was listening leaned over to me and asked quite audibly in her shrill little four year old girl voice, "Mom, what is butt dust?"

Thursday, January 17, 2008


Where is the usual January "slow down?" The month is more than half gone, and I'm already "a day late and a dollar short!"

Last night's weather forecast predicted that today's high would be 38. Apparently the weather man has not read the book that informs him that 38 is not a HIGH temperature!

Burton has learned that he can activate the robot vacuum cleaner by walking across the top of it. Knowing that puts a whole new spin on things "going bump in the night."

My Christmas letter has still not materialized. My New Year's letter has still not materialized. I'm now thinking along the lines of a Valentine (or perhaps Easter)letter.

Thursday hugzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz to all!
(read the post below this one...such a sweet story)


This is a bit long but very sweet, and it is a wonderful example of God answering our prayers "in mysterious ways."
The Old Man and the Dog
by Catherine Moore

"Watch out! You nearly broad sided that car!" My father yelled at me."Can't you do anything right?"

Those words hurt worse than blows. I turned my head toward the elderly man in the seat beside me, daring me to challenge him. A lump rose in my throat as I averted my eyes. I wasn't prepared for another battle."

I saw the car, Dad. Please don't yell at me when I'm driving." My voicewas measured and steady, sounding far calmer than I really felt. Dad glared at me, then turned away and settled back.

At home I left Dad in front of the television and went outside to collect my thoughts. Dark, heavy clouds hung in the air with a promise of rain. The rumble of distant thunder seemed to echo my inner turmoil. What could I do about him? Dad had been a lumberjack in Washington and Oregon. He had enjoyed being outdoors and had reveled in pitting his strength against the forces of nature. He had entered grueling lumberjack competitions, and had placed often. The shelves in his house were filled with trophies that attested to his prowess.

The years marched on relentlessly. The first time he couldn't lift a heavy log, he joked about it; but later that same day I saw him outside alone, straining to lift it. He became irritable whenever anyone teased him about his advancing age, or when he couldn't do something he had done as a younger man.

Four days after his sixty-seventh birthday, he had a heart attack. Anambulance sped him to the hospital while a paramedic administered CPR to keep blood and oxygen flowing. At the hospital, Dad was rushed into an operating room. He was lucky; he survived.

But something inside Dad died. His zest for life was gone. He obstinately refused to follow doctor's orders. Suggestions and offers of help were turned aside with sarcasm and insults. The number of visitors thinned, then finally stopped altogether. Dad was left alone.

My husband, Dick, and I asked Dad to come live with us on our small farm. We hoped the fresh air and rustic atmosphere would help him adjust. Within a week after he moved in, I regretted the invitation. It seemed nothing was satisfactory. He criticized everything I did. I became frustrated and moody. Soon I was taking my pent-up anger out on Dick. We began to bicker and argue. Alarmed, Dick sought out our pastor and explained the situation. The clergyman set up weekly counseling appointments for us. At the close of each session he prayed, asking God to soothe Dad's troubled mind. But the months wore on and God was silent. Something had to be done, and it was up to me to do it.

The next day I sat down with the phone book and methodically called each of the mental health clinics listed in the Yellow Pages. I explained my problem to each of t he sympathetic voices that answered. In vain. Just when I was giving up hope, one of the voices suddenly exclaimed, "I just read something that might help you! Let me go get the article." I listened as she read. The article described a remarkable study done at a nursing home. All of the patients were under treatment for chronic depression. Yet their attitudes had improved dramatically when they were given responsibility for a dog.

I drove to the animal shelter that afternoon. After I filled out a questionnaire, a uniformed officer led me to the kennels. The odor of disinfectant stung my nostrils as I moved down the row of pens. Eachcontained five to seven dogs. Long-haired dogs, curly-haired dogs, black dogs, spotted dogs all jumped up, trying to reach me. I studied each one but rejected one after the other for various reasons: too big, too small, too much hair. As I neared the last pen a dog in the shadows of the far corner struggled to his feet, walked to the front of the run and sat down. It was a pointer, one of the dog world's aristocrats. But this was a caricature of the breed. Years had etched his face and muzzle with shades of gray. His hipbones jutted out in lopsided triangles. But it was his eyes that caught and held my attention. Calm and clear, they beheld me unwaveringly.

I pointed to the dog. "Can you tell me about him?" The officer looked,then shook his head in puzzlement.

"He's a funny one. Appeared out of nowhere and sat in front of the gate. We brought him in, figuring someone would be right down to claim him. That was two weeks ago and we've heard nothing. His time is up tomorrow." He gestured helplessly.

As the words sank in I turned to the man in horror. "You mean you're going to kill him?"

"Ma'am," he said gently, "that's our policy. We don't have room for every unclaimed dog.

"I looked at the pointer again. The calm brown eyes awaited my decision. "I'll take him," I said.

I drove home with the dog on the front seat beside me. When I reached the house I honked the horn twice. I was helping my prize out of the car when Dad shuffled onto the front porch.

"Ta-da! Look what I got for you, Dad!" I said excitedly.

Dad looked, then wrinkled his face in disgust. "If I had wanted a dog Iwould have gotten one. And I would have picked out a better specimen than that bag of bones. Keep it! I don't want it" Dad waved his arm scornfully and turned back toward the house.

Anger rose inside me. It squeezed together my throat muscles and pounded into my temples.

You'd better get used to him, Dad. He's staying!" Dad ignored me. "Did you hear me, Dad?" I screamed. At those words Dad whirled angrily, his hands clenched at his sides, his eyes narrowed and blazing with hate.

We stood glaring at each other like duelists, when suddenly the pointerpulled free from my grasp. He wobbled toward my dad and sat down in front of him. Then slowly, carefully, he raised his paw.

Dad's lower jaw trembled as he stared at the uplifted paw. Confusion replaced the anger in his eyes. The pointer waited patiently. Then Dad was on his knees hugging the animal.

It was the beginning of a warm and intimate friendship. Dad named thepointer Cheyenne. Together he and Cheyenne explored the community. They spent long hours walking down dusty lanes. They spent reflective moments on the banks of streams, angling for tasty trout. They even started to attend Sunday services together, Dad sitting in a pew and Cheyenne lying quietly at his feet.

Dad and Cheyenne were inseparable throughout the next three years. Dad's bitterness faded, and he and Cheyenne made many friends. Then late one night I was startled to feel Cheyenne's cold nose burrowing through our bed covers. He had never before come into our bedroom at night. I woke Dick, put on my robe and ran into my father's room. Dad lay in his bed, his face serene. But his spirit had left quietly sometime during the night.

Two days later my shock and grief deepened when I discovered Cheyenne lying dead beside Dad's bed. I wrapped his still form in the rag rug he had slept on. As Dick and I buried him near a favorite fishing hole, I silently thanked the dog for the help he had given me in restoring Dad's peace of mind.

The morning of Dad's funeral dawned overcast and dreary. This day looks like the way I feel, I thought, as I walked down the aisle to the pews reserved for family. I was surprised to see the many friends Dad and Cheyenne had made filling the church. The pastor began his eulogy. It was a tribute to both Dad and the dog who had changed his life. And then the pastor turned to Hebrews 13:2. "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers."

"I've often thanked God for sending that angel," he said.

For me, the past dropped into place, completing a puzzle that I had notseen before: the sympathetic voice that had just read the right article...Cheyenne's unexpected appearance at the animal shelter. . .his calmacceptance and complete devotion to my father. . .and the proximity oftheir deaths. And suddenly I understood. I knew that God had answered my prayers after all.

Monday, January 7, 2008


Hmmmm...perhaps I should remove the Christmas pictures and replace them with something more "timely." Ya think???????????

Tuesday, January 1, 2008



Happy New Year, Everyone! It's always hard for me to believe that the old year is gone and a new one has arrived. As always, the old year seems to have gone by in a blur.

I don't usually make resolutions, but there are a couple I'm pondering very seriously this year. How about those of you who read this blog? Are you making any resolutions this year?

We had a nice trip to Seattle to be with the girls during Christmas. All travel was uneventful which is most definitely the best kind. Our younger daughter and her roomie were wonderful hostesses. They had a beautiful tree, and it was nice to sit and enjoy the lights. We did a lot of sight-seeing, a lot of picture taking (that's Cathye who took the pictures), a lot of restaurant visiting (YUM, YUM, YUM), and a lot of present opening. Santa was more than generous, as always. We opened gifts at Alyson's apartment and cooked Christmas dinner at Andrea's. After we ate that evening, we played games for a while. I love to see the girls laugh.

We enjoyed seeing where both girls work. We had a chance to visit Andrea's church both on Sunday and on Christmas Eve. I really, really liked the pastor's sermons! The two restaurants where Alyson works fed us royally. Food was great in both places.

The weather wasn't too bad. We had a wide variety of weather...some rain..a bit of sun...lots of clouds...some wind...some really cold days...and some fairly nice days. The rain was mostly drizzle so it wasn't too bad.

My favorite event was taking the ferry to Bainbridge Island on Saturday and eating at a little Pub there. Andrea's roommate and her boyfriend joined us which made it even more fun.

I was surprised at how long it took my body to get used to the time change. In fact, it was time to come home by the time I was used to it. I must admit that I slept most of the day after our return, but then I had to jump head first into a big project I'm doing for church which needs to be finished by Friday. Have I known about it for a long time? Uh huh But...I just couldn't get "the spirit to move" until we returned. It's nice to have it almost under control now.

We also have a Christmas party to go to on Thursday...for the church staff. That is always fun. Seems like there's also something this weekend, but right now I'm not remembering what. (shocker)

I would love to hear from you!!!!!!!!!!!!!
lovies and huggies,
p.s. It's supposed to be 12 degrees tonight! BRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR