Sunday, November 30, 2008


Woo-hoo! I DID IT! NaBloPoMo! I posted 30 posts in 30 days! Yay me! It was really interesting to see my mind get changed regarding blogging as the days went by. I found myself intentionally watching & listening for blog material every where I went. Waiting in the car for my hubby to run an errand became a treat because it gave me a few moments of alone quietness to ponder stuff. I started writing little notes to myself when a fun idea hit me.

Blogging gave me an opportunity to share my heart in a brand new arena to brand new people! I saved up stories & questions for future postings. My life is rich with adventures & events & I am anxious to find ways to share my lessons learned & to let you laugh at me in the non-lesson type stories that fill my personal journals.

Reading everyone else's posts has been a wonderful education & entertainment unending. We are a world of varied people with tons of stories, messages & kooky insights that continue to uplift & surprise me. I know that there are no guaranteed prizes in this writing challenge but it has been totally rewarding to me & I'm glad I did it!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

Christmas Tree O Christmas Tree!

Can't you just about smell the beautiful evergreen pictured above? The heavy, fragrant aroma of a newly chopped tree used to be my favorite thing about Christmas season in our house. We always bundled up the boys & headed out to a local tree farm to search long & seriously through the "forest" of beautifully perfect trees. Our sons would listen to mommy & daddy argue lightly about which tree was the best shape & height. Which one would have the high honor of holding the tons of ornaments we had collected, along with the cute & creative ones that our boys had made for us over the years. (Truly amazing what all can be done with paper & glue!)

If you are able to catch the aroma of the tree above then you are inhaling a mixture of metal, paper/fabric, glue & possibly some paint. Unfortunately when the tree farms started charging over $30 for a skinny tree we gave in (read: I gave in) & purchased a .....horrors....FAKE tree! It still hurts to admit it & to hear myself ask hubby to "please get the tree box down for me, ok?".

So that wonderful holiday-filled tree perfume is absent from my house now unless I get it in candle form or some kind of spray in a can, which I will never do! Tomorrow evening I will open the box & sort out the graduated sized branches & ASSEMBLE my Christmas tree. It just feels so wrong, but it looks pretty nice once the ornaments are on and the pretty lights are sparkling away. And it is definitely way less messy. There are no dry needles on the floor around it every morning & I don't have to remember to put water in the holder every day. We don't have to worry about the possibility of water damage to the floor underneath it. The financial side of buying a fake tree is a major plus in the equation!

But I still miss the hunt for the perfect tree & the complimentary hot cocoa they served at the tree farm. The families all bundled up even though it is California & we really have no idea what true winter weather is! I loved the Christmas carols coming over the loudspeakers & the free sleigh rides around the farm. I'm sitting here thinking that maybe someday when I have some grandkids, we'll have to go wander around a tree farm, drink some cocoa & go on a sleigh ride. Maybe I will even splurge & buy myself a real tree!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Time To Decorate!

Here is my family Christmas photo from 2007. We traveled out of state last year to be with my parents & sibs & their kids for about 4 days & it was wonderful! This is in my moms' house where you cannot look in any direction without running into decorations of the holiday. She goes all out & it takes her weeks to put it all up & then again to strip it all down again.

I was thinking about her this morning - after -Thanksgiving which is normally my Christmas decorating day. No, I never go out shopping on this day, no way no how! I did not really decorate today though because I needed to really clean for something happening here tomorrow. As I dusted furniture, scrubbed bathrooms & swept all floors (no carpeting in whole house, just rugs on wood-like floors) I could clearly picture a huge calendar that my mom used to draw each year to keep us on track for her decorating schedule.

You read that correctly. She had a serious decorating schedule. The calendar began THREE MONTHS before Christmas! It was all about DEEP cleaning the entire 2 story house from top to bottom in preparation for her major decorating plans. I kid you not. My moms' decorating involved removing EVERY SINGLE object from every space & table top, storing it away & replacing it all with holiday themed pretties. We had little Christmas trees in the bathrooms, complete with tiny ornaments, real greenery along all bookshelves & staircase banister, fake snow on all windows & the pictures on the walls were either replaced with holiday scenes or wrapped up like a gift. The front door & yard were always beautifully decorated. The couches had Christmas pillows, the kitchen had green & red patterned napkins, hot pads & dish towels. We used Christmas mugs & dishes instead of the regular stuff & enjoyed spicy scented candles & lots of Christmas music on the stereo. To top it all off we had two huge Christmas trees; the one in front of the big picture window was elegantly decorated in silver or gold & the tree in the family room was a crazy, fun mixture of all the ornaments we had made for her or she had bought through the years at holiday craft shows.

Today I was pondering why she worked so hard for so many weeks to have the ultimate Christmas each year. Sometimes she desired every detail to be so perfect that it made her too sick & tired to even enjoy the actual day once it finally came around. This morning, for the first time I believe I figured out what was behind all that planning & work. When she was a child her holidays were pretty much the opposite of what she had given us. I recall her describing a year when she had cut out a tree from butcher paper & taped it to the wall so she & her sibs had something to look at to tell them it was a special day. What gifts they put under that paper tree I don't know.

I wonder if as a little girl she may have made a promise to herself that her kids would have a real Christmas each year instead of what she had. My mother is an enthusiastic, people-loving, generous person who is also very strong & determined when she sets a goal for herself. It would not surprise me at all if somewhere in the back of her mind & memory she is thinking about that paper tree while she decorates her two big lush trees & draping fragrant greenery around the fireplace mantel.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Oh My Tummy!

I just got home from a day of feasting, laughing, story-telling, teasing, complimenting, sharing, talking & more talking & of course complaining about being too full as we get up for more pumpkin pie!

Both our families live out of state so we join a group of close friends each year for our Thanksgiving meal, & it is so fun, I love it! We each bring our specialty dish & bask in the compliments & the rare moments of silence as everyone has their mouths full at once.

There were about 16 of us this year, we purposely tried to keep it down after it began to grow too huge in the last few years. This was just right for visiting & being able to hear each other in the crowded living room-turned into dining room.
After a leisurely meal of all the classic dishes, & a few bottles of wine, the men cleared the table (great group huh?) & disappeared out to the porch to smoke pipes & the women found themselves alone & laughed about it looking like the old fashioned days of Gone With The Wind when the ladies would go take a lady-like nap while the men smoked.

I have lunch with these same people every single Sunday & I also work with some of them every day, yet we still have so much to talk about every time we get together! It's amazing how many stories & dreams we all have & how fun it is to hear the new ones along with the old ones that the entire group could recite from memory. I usually never want to leave these gatherings, but after several hours a shift kind of happens & different ones begin to head to the kitchen to package up some left-overs to take & my hubby starts to give me the "the look" that means he's done & ready to go home.

There are lots of hugs & kisses & thank-yous as we head out to our cars & fill the trunks with goodies for the next day. We are all getting together on Saturday night just for fun & we will probably still have more stories & dreams to talk about then!

Our tradition is really not very different looking than the normal family gatherings that most are able to do each year. We are a family in the truest sense & we have chosen to be in one anothers' lives, through the good, the bad & the ugly. I love these people & I am loved by them. Don't want to sound corny here, but, isn't that what the holiday is about? Getting together with those you love & giving thanks to God for each of them? That & getting up to watch the Macy's Parade of course!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Holiday Food!

See that expression on Writer-Sons' face? It totally matches mine when I think about my mom's sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top! I know, some of you think that is a disgusting idea, but, Oh man is it yummy! I believe that may be the main reason my guys want to spend holidays at Grandmas house, she cooks. I do not.

Now you know why my kitchen looked so clean & neat in this recent post! I have always hated cooking, so now that our sons take care of themselves, my hubs & I get a big lunch out somewhere because we work together & then just snack at night. I love being free to do stuff like that any way we want to, one of the advantages of our age I guess!

Anyway, sweet potatoes are one of my favorite holiday foods. My moms' Cinnamon rolls & fudge are the best I have ever tasted too. Can you tell I have a bit of a sweet tooth? When I was a little girl my mom made her fudge several weeks before Christmas, wrapped it in foil & hid it in a closet so it would be ready for Christmas Day. I accidentally found the hidden treasure one year & secretly ate a few pieces each day until she opened it up on Christmas Eve to find an empty container! Not a happy holiday for me, my punishment was to eat nothing sweet on Christmas Day! Torture!

Since I am not much of a cook, my contribution to family or friends gatherings is always the dinner rolls or something easy like jello. Early tomorrow morning I'm headed to the grocery store for my jello recipe ingredients. I make this wonderfully sweet concoction of raspberry jello, raspberries, pineapple, bananas & sour cream that is as good as dessert!

This Thanksgiving we will be joining some good friends of ours because all my family is out of state & we aren't traveling this year. So the marshmallow-y sweet potatoes will have to wait another year. What are some of your favorite holiday foods?

Monday, November 24, 2008

Writing About Writing

The picture above has nothing to do with this blog post, I just thought it was funny.

We are on DAY 24 of NaBloPoMo! Only 6 more days & posts to go! It has been fun & challenging for me & I hope to keep it up at least every other day if I can. My dream used to be about becoming a newspaper columnist. I went to a writers mini conference & heard a professional columnist describe his job. He wrote one article a week & it was sent out to 20 different newspapers & they all paid him!

Money was not really my main motivation though. I just loved writing but never imagined my name on a book cover or movie script. I loved the idea of putting fresh words out there every week & having an audience with feedback & some kind of relationship going on. Like Dave Barry or Erma Bombeck. I used to clip her columns out all the time. (You younger ones may not recognize her name, but she was hilarious & very real.)

As it turned out I was able to realize this fantasy for several years but not in the way you may expect. I was a pastors wife for 10 years in a very small California town. The local newspaper had a once a week Church Page for the pastors to write about their Sunday sermons & make church announcements. I did not ask permission of anyone at the paper but I just grabbed that little chance & ran with it! I sent in a weekly column about life's' turns & funny experiences & seeing God in all kinds of situations.

After taking my two sons to school in the mornings I would sit in front of my computer & type away. I loved the deadline of it, the column had to be in the editors hands before 2pm on Tuesday each week. I was a very busy mom & church leader. I organized the ladies activities, taught the children's church, ran a local ministerial wives group, typed the weekly bulletin, went to an exercise class, drove a carpool, met with a small group in my home each week, etc.. But I managed to fit the writing in for nearly 8 years.

People in the community would comment on the column when we met & I loved the attention it gave me. One lady even told me that she cut it out & put it on her fridge!! Woo-hoo! I now have a binder of those articles, both the originals on regular paper & a copy of the newspaper printouts.

The other day I was thinking about how so many of my friends are seriously going after their life-long dreams & wondered what happened to my dream. I really love my job a lot but it is not my dream job. My dream job would be to write short snippets of words that cheer someone up or brighten their day or make them at least chuckle a little bit. I don't want a book with my name on it that will gather dust on someones shelf. I want my words to be fresh & real & honest & living. And then I realized that blogging is the new column writing! We are all sending our fresh words out into cyberspace to be loved or ignored, saved or deleted by strangers who we may never see face to face. I would love to think my words made a difference in the life of a reader but that again is not my motivation. I write because I have to, because the words are swirling around in my head & heart & they need to be released. NaBloPoMo has forced me to write everyday & put my words out there for all to see. And I am enjoying the process very much, even as I catch myself daydreaming about what to write next, or thinking about how something will work for my blog even as I am living it! At least cyberspace doesn't get thrown into the trash the next day!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

My Joyful Kitchen!

Isn't that just the most perfect spot for my new mosaic made by my friend? It makes me smile & even giggle when I enter my kitchen, love it, love her!

%#@&!! On another note: Today I could not get my hair to go into it's new, cute style at all. The more I worked with it (mistake #1) the worse it got! The stylist made it look & sound so easy in the shop. Isn't that the case a lot?

"All you need to do is dry it in sections & wrap the sections around a rounded brush & blow dry it that way, then just add a touch of styling paste & there you are!"

Well I do not have the dexterity to reach back there & hold the round brush just right for the dryer to set it correctly. I feel like I need at least one, maybe two more arms to do this! So this morning it looks kinda weird, & of course it's my first Sunday since the cut. But being the devout christian woman that I am, I do not ever let my looks interfere with my worship experience! Unfortunately that would be a lie of huge proportions. Ha!
I am now at home drinking out of a coffee cup someone gave me a while ago. Printed on it are these words; "Lighten Up, Loosen Up, Let Go, Soak It In, Choose Life." Hmm....don't have to hit me over the head with a message. Or maybe you do!

Saturday, November 22, 2008


I am thankful for this view out my classroom window.
I'm thankful for a husband who looks at me in my sleep.
For two sons who are good men.
I am grateful for the amazing friends I get to work with every day.
I am thankful for the ability to travel for my work.
I am thankful that my lifelong headaches have gone away at last.
I am full of thanks for a beautiful home.
I am thankful for words.
I am thankful for praying parents & grandparents.
For a brother, sister & many neices & nephews.
I am thankful for lots of new freedoms in my life.
I am thankful for my health & strength.
I am grateful for my faith, laughter, lessons learned & battles to fight.
I am thankful for an amazing life!
I am thankful that I know exactly Who to thank!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Blue & White China

I have some truly amazing friends! No, I mean it, I am surrounded by many very creative & artistic people. One of my close friends is selling her paintings in galleries here & in Hawaii for thousands of dollars. Another part of my gang has written 5 books & working on a 6th right now, actually 3 of my buddies have written books! Crazy! Some are musicians with CDs out & invitations all over the world.

So I should have known better when I gave one friend a bag of old ceramic flower pots that I no longer use. They were cracked & dirty but I couldn't just throw them in the garbage because they had sentimental meaning to me. I had purchased them at a goodwill store while I was still single. They just captured me & began my devotion to all things blue & white! I have used them for the last 30 some years for plants, combs, lipsticks, pens etc.

I gave them to a friend who does mosaics for a living. (well...part of her living)I figured she could use them in some of the cool stuff she makes & sells. Well, yesterday before I left work to come home mildly sick (Feeling fine now! Thanks for asking!) she begged me to come into her office & see her latest project. Tears soon appeared as she unveiled a gorgeous mosaic just for my family made out of our treasured pieces! What are you going to do with a buddy like that? I am blessed!
Check it out.....

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cheer up Pics

I'm not feeling good today & came home early. Had to miss an important but dreaded meeting, oh well. So will only post some cheery sunflower pics that I have taken on my way to work.

And this is a painting done by one of our students. It now hangs on my living room wall! Love it!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Stupid Commercials

Today's' post will be a short one because I will be out tonight & that is when I usually do my writing.

There is a really dopey commercial that I keep seeing lately & it just makes me crazy. I hope I don't get in trouble for saying the product name (let me know if that is a "no-no" ok?)but the commercial shows a busy mom hurrying her family out the door because she has a lot of supposed cleaning to do while they are gone. Then after they all leave she just sprays her Glade air freshener around & then proceeds to relax & enjoy her day alone.

When the fam gets home her husband says something about how great everything smells & what a lot of work she must have done. She responds (and this just sounds so stupid to me) "Yes, aren't you glad?". At that point he sees the air freshener can & says "Don't you mean Glade?" AAHH!

I totally understand using air freshener to make a house smell nice & clean, but to use it INSTEAD of cleaning? Yuck! And how many days is she doing her cleaning this way? Just how many cans is she going through until brilliant hubby figures it out?
And who would say "Aren't you glad?" when complimented on a clean house?

Do you have a commercial that makes you crazy? Tell me about it & if there are a lot of great ones I will list them in a post.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Thank you Coffee Slut for this sweet award! (And the others you gave me!)

Here are the rules for this one:

1. Mention the blog that gave it to you and comment on their blog to let them know you’ve posted your award.

2. Publish these rules.

3. Share 6 values that are important to you and 6 things you do not support.

4. Grant the prize to 6 people.

6 values that are important:
1. Believing the best about people.
2. Speaking truth wrapped in love.
3. Finding the joy.
4. Refusing to be a victim.
5. Never allowing fear to make my decisions. (Hard!)
6. Choosing my atmosphere.

6 Things I don't support:
1. Gossip.
2. Jealousy.
3. Cheating.
4. Wallowing.
5. Saying yes when I mean no.
6. Blaming others for my problems.

I grant this prize to
Lydia at Soulcuts
The One Minute Writer
Becoming Me

Monday, November 17, 2008




After not so patiently growing my hair out for TWO YEARS, I finally gave up on the long sleek bob look for my flat fine hair. Too much work for too little result. I am very happy with the shorter, shaggier look! Yay me!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Kiddie Christmas Program Pt 2

Here is the shot of my rocker son being a sad little shepherd. He is the the pink cheeked one standing on the far left. Want to know why his cheeks are so rosy? Because he has a bad momma! Yep, my little cutey showed positve evidence after the program that he had the flu! So glad I am not telling you a hurling in church story! But I was so busy being the "perfect pastors wife" that I did not pick up on how he was feeling. He never said anything but c'mon, look at that face!!

Remember what I said in the last post about people calling these little presentations tacky? Well, this pic above pretty much fits that don't you think? I had seen a program once that had a little girl dressed as a cow & it just bothered me so much. So instead I had a friend paint our barn animals. I did not want them to have silly cartoon faces but what are you going to do with a cheerful volunteer, ya know? (Which just about sums up why the church has some really goofy stuff around sometimes.)

This is me shepherding the shepherds back in my poodle permed days! Yikes! I did love doing those programs a lot. I kept it totally simple, no complicated story line at all, just people celebrating Jesus' first birthday. Even had the kids gather around a real birthday cake one year!
Anyway, this is getting me in the mood for Christmas. Time to shop, bake & decorate! Every year I say I'll do less & I have cut down quite a bit, but by the time another year rolls around I am ready to jump into it all over again! Do you have some fun traditions you don't want to let go of?

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Favorite Part of Christmas!

I know it is only mid November & we haven't even enjoyed our huge Thanksgiving meals yet but I can't resist showing you one of my favorite things that happen in December. Kids Christmas programs! They always get me. The above pic is over 20 years ago, my eldest is the shepherd on the end in blue. Cute-ness?!

As a pastors wife for ten years I loved organizing the kids programs even though I knew they were cliche & considered tacky by some. How can you look at these little angels & not smile? (Especially when you knew the REAL personalities of some of them!)
I have a totally funny & adorable photo of son number two with a bunch of fellow shepherds but blogger is not letting me load it at this time so it will have to delight you on another day.
Baby Jesus being held upside down, an angel sucking on her hair, Joseph punching one of the's impossible to ruin a kids Christmas program. It's all good!

Friday, November 14, 2008

Friday Fill-Ins: #98

Friday Fill-Ins: #98

1. Please feel free to come see my blog anytime! .
2. When I find a really old book I can't help sniffing it occasionally.
3. My favorite thing to cook up is a plan to go out to eat!.
4. Coffee & reading is something I can't get enough of.
5. That's the thing I love most about the idea of a library with a coffee shop! .
6. Christmas music in October always makes me think to myself, what the heck?
7. And as for the weekend, tonight I'm looking forward to a great Ray Hughes concert, tomorrow my plans include more time with him and Sunday, I want to eat lunch with my friends!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I'm A Journal Junkie

I am trying to remember exactly when I began to keep a journal & I feel like I was practically born journaling! I still have a few fat little diaries that locked shut with the tiniest golden key. I was probably about 8 or 9 & I loved them so much, filling them up, even writing around the edges of pages to fit all my thoughts & wonderings onto paper.

Later I moved on to large spirals & I still have a stack of those somewhere in my garage. Oh the drama! I like him, but he likes her & she likes some other him. There are even some mentions of the skinny long haired blond guy that became my hubby many years later!

After High School there is a bit of a gap as working, dating & marriage consumed me & then a true "Blank Book" journal was purchased the day after I found out that I was pregnant with our first son. I wrote letters to him telling him how happy we were to finaly know that he was coming to us. (It took us 4 years to get pregnant.) That same journal became his baby book in many ways because I continued it into his infancy & up till Pre-school.

The habit was strong & I have always had a journal going ever since then, 26 years of "real" journals are stacked in my closet. One for each of the boys & my own personal ones. The picture above is a small portion of my collection. Those are the early ones which were very floral-ish compared to the more beautiful ones I use now.

Just inside the front cover of my childhood diary are some rules that I created for myself. (First born!) Mainly the rules were about writing every single day or else! Not sure what "or else!" meant but I was being very firm with myself! Ha!

Now I have one true rule: There are no rules! I write whenever, about whatever I want! That freed me up & made it such a pleasure to express myself in a safe place. Someimes I actually feel like an event did not really finish happening to me until I have written about it! Is that weird? Do any of you feel that way?

Now I am beginning to wonder if they should be left for my family after I die or should I think about destroying them. There is some pretty hard & harsh things in there, but it's all true. And sometimes when I look over them I am pleased with the way they show my whole life & the thoughts & questions I had as I lived it. There are a lot of prayers in there too & it's pretty cool to see the answers as the pages go by. Not that I am planning on leaving anytime soon though!

Now blogging seems to be replacing my journal entries & that concerns me. After all, these blog posts are not as permanent as a leather book full of ink. But I still carry my current journal with me every day & it is still my favorite place of collecting thoughts, questions & rants. I am completely honest in there & it can reveal my selfishness & jealousies pretty clearly. Which makes me often wish that it still came with a tiny golden key!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Too Old To Care?

Okay, I am really wanting to read all the new stuff my friends have been posting, but if I do that before writing, I may look up & see that too many hours have dissappeared & then I will have ruined my NaBloPoMo challenge of writing every single day for a month! So here's what's on my mind.....

The other day I was struggling with the fun job of eyebrow plucking. For a glasses wearer it is pretty tricky. Can't see the tiny hairs clearly without the specs on, but when they are on, they are in the way! I suddenly recalled a momment in a drugstore with my little sister when we were about 8 & 10 years old. We were looking at some crazy magnified glasses that had the ability to fold down one eye lense at a time. I remember laughing at them & telling my sister that by the time we got so old that we could not see clearly, we would not really be caring about our looks anymore!

Well, that day has arrived & I still care hugely about how I look. I'm still wanting to look put together & at least as nearly fashionable as I can. I often wonder if I care too much. A lot of energy & thought goes into my hair, weight, shoes, clothes & make-up. I don't feel guilty about it, but just try to keep it balanced you know?

I work with young people every day. Gorgeous, skinny, creative young things who look amazing even when they are late for school & still have pillow creases on their faces! Did that sound jealous? I'm not....but I now understand that old saying I used to hear, about how "youth is wasted on the young!". Ha! Maybe part of their beauty is their lack of awareness of it!

I have momments of feeling beautiful. But more often, my morning getting-ready routine ends with me looking in the mirror & saying "Oh well, that'll have to do!".
Of course if my glasses are still sitting on the dresser, the mirror is my best friend! Wonder where I can find some of those crazy glasses.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Todays Writing Prompt

Oh this is an easy one! Write about your favorite place in your home......
I have written about my favorite spot in my home before so I won't go into lots of detail except to say that it is my comfy, cozy, nest-like blue & white barrel chair.
I write in it, blog in it, talk on the phone, pray & stare out the window in it. When it is cold outside it is the perfect spot by the fireplace with a hot cup of coffee or a lovely glass of wine.

It has not looked really nice for a long time. The arms are frayed & it's a bit saggier than it used to be. (Kind of sounds like I'm describing myself there!)But it stills warms my heart & makes me feel creative & at home.
Thank you "One Minute Writer" for the fun prompt!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My Men

Today will be a bragging post. I am one of those lucky women who is surrounded by men. I am the only female in my immediate family, even the cat is male. My guys are no longer the little boys who left a trail of dirt, action figures, unbelievable sox & video games around. They are wonderful, surprising & creative young men who I love to be around!
Ok, now that I have decided to write about them, my mind is falling all over itself with ideas & stories! But for now I will simply introduce them them to you. The adventure of watching boys change into men is full of so many emotions & tests that I am happy to be where we are, but every once in a while I find myself missing the sweet little toothless grins & kisses. If given a choice to go back & do it again though? Nope!!
So here they are. My eldest is Writer Son, he is a mailman who is busy gathering stories out there every day & he would love to write screen plays for Hollywood.

My youngest is Rocker Son. As you can see his passion is metal music & he is really talented. His band plays regularly in the nearby big city & small towns in our region. He has a tough guy exterior that is covering an easily revealed soft heart.

They are amazing young men who have driven me crazy, kept me up at night, showered me with love, made me laugh & made me cry, but mostly they have made me proud.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

My Closet Needs Shoe Shurgery

Sheriously! Ok, I'll stop the shilly-ness. Couldn't resist one more, sorry. My closet is full of extremely ordinary, totally functional shoes that lack an important ingredient. Personality! My husband would totally disagree, but then he hates Clinton & Stacey whom I love & often hear in my head when I go shopping. They would not be happy with my closet. Most of the shoes in there were purchased before I got to know them. Here is the evidence.......

These little beauties are very comfy & I have worn them for a few years with jeans & other pants but now I can't bear to put them on because they suddenly look so klunky & old lady-ish. But it is now getting too chilly & wet to wear my beloved flip-flops.

So I have resorted to these. But they are cotton so they really might as well be flip-flops!

I have some boots & some fun tennies.

I also have high heeled sandals & ankle boots. Bet you'll never guess what colors they are. Yep, black & black! I seem to be a bit stuck. I have been a practical woman for many years. I am not very, to use my MIL cute word: "spendy". I figure that what little I have should be spent on something that can be worn with everything. But that is getting to be boring & sad. I do love these even though they are also black. Got them from Old Navy last year.

So, my bloggy friends, I ask you for your help. Any ideas of great shoes with some color & personality for a "careful" shopper? Keep in mind that I am a small town girl who normally shops at stores like Target, Kohls & Old Navy. My poor closet is in dire need of a shome shoe shurgery! Help!
(Wow, this post was hard because my photos only show up in code until I hit publish!)

Friday, November 7, 2008

One Minute Writers' Prompt

The "writing prompt" for today is the word "child" & it immediately takes me to one sunny afternoon only about 7 years ago in my livingroom. I was listening to a new worship CD & could not resist twirling around & around because of the joy that it brought up in me. As I twirled I caught a reflection of myself in the glass of a picture over our fireplace & it looked like a little girl twirling in front of her Daddy, feeling totally loved & accepted. I stopped & pondered that for a bit & realized that I had not been a twirly kind of kid; I was always mature, responsible & cautious. But from that momment on I have intentionally gone after the fun side of life & the extravagantly free version of following after God, & it has been an amazing ride so far!

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Bug Guts

Just a funny little example of how even us "mature" women have our embarrassing momments due to a busy life. Yesterday I was in line at the grocery store after spending a large amount of time all over the store gathering our needed items. I was standing in a very long line because of course there were only 2 lanes open during the busy after 5pm rush.
Wanting to avoid the stupid tabloid stories, I looked down at my black leather jacket & it had bug guts all over it from our last motorcycle ride! Yuck, gross, Oh well!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Praying About The Outcome

My main prayer this voting day is about the outcome. No, I am not praying FOR a certain outcome. I am concerned for what the outcome will bring OUT of us. Specifically believers. I am a believer & I am worried about how other people of faith will react if their choice does not get into office. Unfortunately, my husband & I were deeply dissappointed in the reactions & words spoken when Clinton was voted in. We heard wonderful, loving, devoted christians totally bash him & speak horribly about him once he got into office against their wishes.

I think that once the person is placed in office we need to express prayers of honor & thanks for what God is able to do no matter who is the "king" of the country. We need to be very careful to speak only words of hope & possibility, because it is really difficult to pray FOR someone that we are verbally abusing to our friends.I'm really not a political kind of person. I don't get out on street corners & try to legislate righteousness. I don't think that holding a sign up is going to change someones' vote or values. But I do believe in prayer & in making a difference one person at a time through kindness & truth. That kindness includes how I talk about my leaders. God help us.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Obituary For A Shirt

It happened this morning & I am so sad. Almost feel like I should send out formal death notices to my friends & family. My favorite white shirt is done for. How will I ever replace it with anything so perfect & loyal for so many years?

Today I was getting ready to iron it & you should have heard the cry when I saw the two small holes on both sides of the collar! Not the kind of rips that can be mended, but actual material desintigration from so many wearings & bleachings. It has been my "go to" top since given to me as a hand-me-down in 2001. I know, most of you probably do not wear your clothes that many years, yikes it's almost a decade!!
But this little jem was special.

It is a mens tuxedo shirt. I know it's a mens because the bottons are on the "wrong" side. It is extra long & covers my butt & has saved said portion many times when my pants were too tight or the snap on my jeans would not do it's job until they stretched out a bit. (Wow, getting pretty personal here!)Anyway, this white shirt could be dressed up or casual. It has stff cuffs that required cuff links & a great collar that I used to add a little black velevet ribbon to as a tie. It looks (looked "sniff") cute & sexy with jeans too. I always recieved tons of compliments whenever I wore it!

So very sad. I will miss my faithful friend who could always be counted on to get me out the door when it seemed like nothing would work. I could wear it open with a tank or shirt underneath, or closed & pulled together looking. But maybe it won't have to be "good-bye" after all. Now that it is not wearable in public, I can enjoy it at home & not worry about ruining it. It's looking pretty good on me right now as I write this obituary to my favorite shirt. I guess it still lives on in another life. Does clothing believe in re-incarnation?

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Three Photos

I was looking over my photos on my laptop to get some inspiration for writing today & came across these three pics taken last April. I really like them a lot. The greens are amazing & the memories are happy ones. I was in the Philippines on a mission trip with our students. The people were so open, kind & welcoming. The weather was awful; constantly hot, humid & sticky. I remember that it rained that day as we rode back to our abode in that crazy green bus full of twenty-somethings & lots of noise & laughter.

But I think that what I like best about these pics is that it really looks like I am the woman that I WANT to be. I am joyfully drinking a brand new, unknown thing. Green coconut apparently has the sweet white milk inside, if you wait till the coconut fully ripens then the milk is not so good. And this was good, but that is still not my point here. This was a wonderful moment because I put aside my cautious, reserved, fearful persona & just did it! The laughter is more about that than what I was drinking.

Most photos of me are evidence that I am the quiet one who is on the side observing things & I am really sick of that role. I believe that we are all born with an inner freedom & joy that allows our childhoods to be pretty fun even in bad circumstances. But life takes it's toll on us & we often grow into less than we were meant to be. Less free, confident & bold. I am learning to unlearn a lot of that old garbage that made me protect myself & thereby prevent me from having more fun as an adult.

Those shots of me in the Philippines are full of fun. Even though moments after this was taken I had to step into a heated argument & misunderstanding between a few people in my charge. Life is full of both drama & fun & I am detirmined to get it all!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Here Goes....

Okay, I have my fresh box of Jujy Fruits, a hot cup of coffee, laundry has been put away & the house is warm & cozy while the rain comes down outside my window. I think I am ready to try the NaBloPoMo contest at last! I will try to write a blog every single day for the month of November. Sounds fun & challenging! (Click on title to see.)
I just got home from our Super Walmart & it was totally crazy in there! It is a rainy Saturday in a small town & I guess that is THE place to go! I usually avoid it at all costs on the week end but we had some very urgent needs, TP & coffee! What can I say? Urgent is urgent in some cases. I think our Super walmart is the next best thing to a mall for a place to hang out & meet friends. At least for teens, they were clogging up all the lines & aisles. Pretty sad to realize that the SW is the best place to hang out in town huh?
It is pretty wonderful to be able to buy food, hair goo, hardware, garden stuff,tools, paint,craft supplies, furniture & videos all in the same place though. I don't ever find clothes there that I like, they tend to look like the same things in better stores but when you try them on it just feels cheaper & hangs weirdly on the body.
It is the main place that my hubby & I use our cell phones consistently. We split up to get the things that we need then call each other to meet up somewhere. It's a huge place & I used to get all huffy when I would circle & circle to find him staring at a motorcycle magazine. Now we just call & then I get huffy cause his phone always sends me to voicemail!