Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Well, the retailers didn't get my help putting them in the BLACK for the year. :) I slept in... got up, dressed and took Drew to see Disney on Ice at the Fort Worth Convention Center. It was really cute.

The show started with a typical Disneyland Main Street Parade. The Incredibles are on vacation there just trying to be normal...but Syndrome has other plans. It was really cute. They totally had me laughing at Elastigirl's padded butt in the casual clothes. (Must be nice!) There were a couple of times they didn't make the jumps... and busted (ouch) but they kept in stride with the program and Drew didn't even seem to notice.

I have to admit, that I think I get more out of watching him than I do from watching the shows. Just seeing him be so excited at the magical"ness" of the moment... it just brings tears to my eyes. I'm such a freakin sap now that I'm a mom -- or it could be PMS but I;m going to go with the lesser of the two evils right now. :) When I initially said I"d bought tickets Josh was really bummed he couldn't go but, seriously, these programs are SO geared toward 6 and under... not 8 and up. He would have "enjoyed" it (as did I) but not... been excited about it... ya know?

We're home now... Drew's watching Arthur... I Just ate a small slice of dad's vanilla wafer cake (MMMMMMMMMMMMMMM) and I changed into my comfy clothes. I was considering going to the Fort Worth Parade of Lights tonight. it starts in 1 hour and 15 minutes but... it's 52 degrees with 84% humidity and frankly... I would rather just snuggle and watch a movie. :)

Perhaps if I had a friend going too, it'd be worth it but... it's just still a little too chilly.

BUT... going to Disney on Ice got me thinking... I'd really like to go back to Disney -- perhaps I'll just sneak a peek at the website...see if they've got any deals going on. :)

Monday, November 24, 2008

A child's nativity

From another blog HERE is a chance to win a children's nativity set. What a great way to visualize the bible story of the greatest birth mankind has ever known? I've been trying to find ways to put Christ back in Christmas... and what a great way to do that!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Fredericksburg, Texas

This weekend I went to Fredericksburg, Texas. One of my most favorite places to go. My dad went with me this weekend. It was really a nice trip. I picked him up from a car dealership and we drove down through Glen Rose, stopped and had some DELICIOUS barbeque and then on to F-burg. It got dark QUICK and there were LOTS of deer out (ON THE ROAD!) UGH! Made for a few interesting moments now and then.

We got to the place that I love, Till's Cabin... settled in and got a good night's sleep. The next day we enjoyed some of their sweet bread (made fresh in town) and went shopping. I LOVE SHOPPING THERE! I could move to that area of the state... it's so beautiful and just... I love the country... I want land land land!

Anyhow -- that night we got back to the cabin, lit a fire in the fireplace and watched Texas Tech get their butts handed to them on a platter by Oklahoma. It was PAINFUL to watch... let me tell you! At one point I just went to get a Subway just so I could leave the television! Painful! Pitiful! Dreadful! (it was bad -- are you following me?) UGH!

The next mornign we got up and toured the Pacific War Museum and drove to Lukenbach and then headed home. It was a nice visit with dad and I hope we can do a small trip like that once or twice a year. :) I think it was wonderful spending time just the two of us together.

While I was there, I had a little friend visiting me -- from Alaska... A Scouting group I'm a part of is doing a "Flat Stanley" project so I took him along and got some pictures of him everywhere as well. It was a hoot! I hope they enjoyed that when they got it back home!

Friday, November 21, 2008

I'm in LOVE....

... with a cow named Otis. :) ha ha ha... I absolutely adore the movie and TV show called Back at the Barnyard. It's just brilliant! I love the storylines, the writing is witty and it's just ... it is MY SHOW! I LOVE IT!

I tivo Barnyard not for the boys, but for ME! :) IT IS MY SHOW!

The movie is genius! I love the Kevin James (King of Queens) as Otis... I love Sam Elliot as Ben, Otis' dad... Samuel Jackson as the stubborn mule... I love Biggie Cheese singing Boombastic in the barn (Shaggy). It's just ... SO FREAKIN CLEVER! This is one of my FAVORITE scenes... it's when the farmer comes into the barn and sees all the animals up on 2 legs, talking and dancing... and gets whacked. The little rat is too cute... "I've got a pulse... weeeeeeee" Check out the scene HERE Both my boys will just say this line and bust a gut laughing...

I love Mrs. Beatty next door... she is just clever and I love how she's NUTS with the talking animals... In one episode of the TV series, she decides to run for mayor "to put an end to talking animals"... when that doesn't get a reaction she adds, "and I'll make you fudge." YOu HAVE to see this show! Seriously!

Veterans day came and went....

and I didn't really say a thing -- shame on me.

We have paid $30 a year to the Lion's club for them to come post a beautiful red, white and blue flag to fly at our house proudly on all major holidays. It's a symbol of freedom that we should display every day but it seems like when it's an every day thing, it becomes commonplace, but to preserve it for those days when we really SHOULD not take things for granted... it's more poignant.

It is the VETERAN, not the preacher, who has given us freedom of religion.

It is the VETERAN, not the reporter, who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the VETERAN, not the poet, who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the VETERAN, not the campus organizer, who has given us freedom to assemble.

It is the VETERAN, not the lawyer, who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is the VETERAN, not the politician, who has given us the right to vote.

It is the VETERAN, who salutes the Flag,

It is the VETERAN, who serves under the Flag,


I have THIS link that was sent to me ... a beautiful tribute to our veterans. I hope you take the time to view it and to share it with those you know and love.

Finish what you started

I am passing this on to you because it works, and we could all use a little more calmness in our lives. By following the advice heard on the Dr. Phil show, you can find inner peace. Dr. Phil said, 'The way to achieve inner peace is to finish all the things you have started and have never finished.'

So, I looked around my house to see all the things I started and hadn't finished, and before leaving the house this morning, I finished off a bottle of White Zinfandel, a bottle of Bailey's Irish Cream, a package of Oreos, the remainder of my old Prozac prescription, the rest of the cheesecake, some Doritos, and a box of chocolates.

You have no idea how freaking good I feel right now.



This should be printed and posted VERY LOW on the refrigerator door - pet nose height.

Dear Dogs and/or Cats:

The dishes with the paw prints are yours and contain your food. The other dishes are mine and contain my food. Please note, placing a paw print in the middle of my plate and food does not stake a claim for it becoming your food and dish. I do not find it aesthetically pleasing in the slightest. The stairway was not designed by NASCAR and is not a racetrack. Beating me to the bottom is not the object. Tripping me doesn't help because I fall faster than you can run. I cannot buy anything bigger than a king sized bed. I am very sorry about this. Do not think I will continue sleeping on the couch to ensure your comfort. Dogs & cats can actually curl up in a ball when they sleep. It is not necessary to sleep perpendicular to each other stretched out to the fullest extent possible. I also know that sticking tails straight out & having tongues hanging out the other end to maximize space is nothing but sarcasm. For the last time, there is no secret exit from the bathroom. If by some miracle I beat you there & manage to get the door shut, it isn’t necessary to claw & whine, try to turn the knob or get your paw under the edge & try to pull the door open. I must exit through the same door that I entered. I have been using the bathroom for years --canine or feline attendance is not required. The proper order is kiss me, then go smell the other dog or cat's butt. I cannot stress this enough!

To pacify you, my dear pets, I will post the following message:

To All Non-Pet Owners Who Visit & Like to Complain About Our Pets
  1. They live here- You don't.
  2. If you don't want their hair on your clothes, stay off the furniture. That's why they call it 'fur'niture.
  3. I like my pets a lot better than I like most people.
  4. To you, they are an animal. To me, they are an adopted child who is short, hairy, walks on all fours and doesn't speak clearly..

    Remember: Dogs and cats are better than kids because they:
    1. Eat less
    2. Don't ask for money all the time
    3 Are easier to train
    4. Normally come when called
    5. Never ask to drive the car
    6. Don't hang out with drug-using friends
    7. Don't smoke or drink
    8. Don't have to buy the latest fashions
    9. Don't want to wear your clothes
    10. Don't need a gazillion dollars for college, and...
    11. If they get pregnant, you can sell their children

Some neat links

My mom is a pelothera of fun websites... some of the ones she'd recently sent are below. Enjoy

The Christian Tree: This is a really neat way to read scripture. Check it out HERE

Fun Buildings: My mom sent me a link to a really neat website that lists a bunch of strange architectural feats. You can see it too HERE

Icons at night: I love, love, love's just too creative! I'm so thankful that there are people on the planet who can think like this! Makes life fun for the rest of us! See it HERE

Firearms Refresher Course

1. An armed man is a citizen. An unarmed man is a subject.

2. A gun in the hand is better than a cop on the phone.

3. Colt: The original point and click interface.

4. Gun control is not about guns; it's about control.

5. If guns are outlawed, can we use swords?

6. If guns cause crime, then pencils cause misspelled words. (This is my favorite!)

7. Free men do not ask permission to bear arms.

8. If you don't know your rights, you don't have any.

9. Those who trade liberty for security have neither.

10. The United States Constitution (c)1791. All Rights Reserved.

11. What part of "shall not be infringed" do you not understand?

12. The Second Amendment is in place in case the politicians ignore the others.

13. 64,999,987 firearms owners killed no one yesterday.

14. Guns only have two enemies; rust and politicians.

15. Know guns, know peace, know safety. No guns, no peace, no safety.

16. You don't shoot to kill; you shoot to stay alive.

17. 911: Government sponsored Dial-a-Prayer.

18. Assault is a behavior, not a device.

19. Criminals love gun control; it makes their jobs safer.

20. If guns cause crime, then matches cause arson.

21. Only a government that is afraid of its citizens tries to control them.

22. You have only the rights you are willing to fight for.

23. Enforce the gun control laws we ALREADY have; don't make more.

24. When you remove the people's right to bear arms, you create slaves.

25. The American Revolution would never have happened with gun control.

26. To enslave a nation you must first confiscate all guns! (Adolph Hitler - 1936)

Today's the day!

Today is Josh's last day of PUBLIC SCHOOL! It's a bittersweet day for me but I know, in my heart of hearts, that this is the right decision for our family.

Drew and I are going up to his school today to have lunch with him and to turn in his letter to the office. Everyone says to mail it certified, return receipt but I just don't see the need for that. I have a great relationship with the secretary and office staff there. I will also mail a copy but see no reason to jump through hoops.

Drew is currently watching a new show. Well, it's not a NEW show but a new show to US! It's called Word World and he LOVES IT! It's so cute and he really digs singing the songs and spelling the characters out. Educational programming -- whoda thunk it!

I leave today for Fredericksburg. I thought about taking Josh with me... but I invited dad instead. I'm sure we'll have a good time. We haven't had an adventure together in a LONG time. :) I'll take advantage of the opportunity to just be with dad.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Two wheelin' (well, sort of)

This was a big night for Drew! He is two wheelin'! I said to save the bike that WAS Josh's first bike, put on some new tires and give it to Drew for Christmas but Andy thought that would be in poor taste and since he knew where the training wheels were and I didn't, he got it all hooked up for Drew. He was SO EXCITED to be on a bike! He sure learned how to lock up those brakes, let me tell ya! This is the first step... he's really becoming a big boy! And, I don't know why but my photos are REALLY looking grainy lately! :( BUT that doesn't take away from how cute he looks on his bike!


Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Things to think about

A lecturer, when explaining stress management to an audience, raised a glass of water and asked, "How heavy is this glass of water?" Answers called out ranged from 8oz. to 20 oz.

The lecturer replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.

He continued, "And that's the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on."

"As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden. So, before you return home tonight, put the burden of work/life down. Don't carry it home. You can pick it up tomorrow. Whatever burdens you're carrying now, let them down for a moment if you can. Relax; pick them up later after you've rested. Life is short. Enjoy!"

And then he shared some ways of dealing with the burdens of life:

  1. Accept that some days you're the pigeon, and some days you're the statue
  2. Always keep your words soft and sweet, just in case you have to eat them.
  3. Always read stuff that will make you look good if you die in the middle of it.
  4. Drive carefully. It's not only cars that can be recalled by their Maker.
  5. If you can't be kind, at least have the decency to be vague.
  6. If you lend someone $20 and never see that person again, it was probably worth it.
  7. It may be that your sole purpose in life is simply to serve as a warning to others.
  8. Never buy a car you can't push.
  9. Never put both feet in your mouth at the same time, because then you won't have a leg to stand on.
  10. Nobody cares if you can't dance well. Just get up and dance.
  11. Since it's the early worm that gets eaten by the bird, sleep late. The second mouse gets the cheese.
  12. When everything's coming your way, you're in the wrong lane.
  13. Birthdays are good for you. The more you have, the longer you live.
  14. You may be only one person in the world, but you may also be the world to one person.
  15. Some mistakes are too much fun to only make once.
  16. We could learn a lot from crayons. Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull. Some have weird names and all are different colors, but they all have to live in the same box.
  17. A truly happy person is one who can enjoy the scenery on a detour.

My kind of learning

I have taken so many of those learning style quizzes to deterimine the way you process information.

And it all comes back to the same thing ALL the time!

I'm pretty much 50/50 with visual and auditory... mix in a few percentage points of kinesthetic as well and that's me in a nutshell. Isn't that crazy? I wish I could be all one way or the other but I guess it's just not meant to be for me. . . that way.

BRACE yourself...

Joshua got BRACES today! :) I said, "You'll hear these: metal mouth, tin grin, brace face." He thought it was hilarious.

We got to the ortho office. He logged himself in and went back to brush his teeth. We waited just a second before he was called back. We were under the impression he was getting his expander today. He got his expander... and his front braces... and his bottom expander. The stuff they can do now is AMAZING! After the attendant said, "let me get the doctor to check this so we can start on your braces." Josh had a look of panic on his face and said, "BRACES?" She laughed a little, as did I, and said, "Oh yeah, you get the works today!" And they gave him the works! I have to turn his expander once a day for the next 21 days. His bottom expander is going to be turned once a week until his jaw have expanded properly (he has a pretty severe overbite). Crazy man... crazy...

I come home and am quite excited to attend a home schooling seminar tonight at Creative Arts in Action. It's a workshop designed for anyone having a question about the possibilities, questions about how to, discussing the pros/cons of homeschooling.... and I can't WAIT!

I've gained all my weight back i'd lost in the last 3 1/2 weeks... not much but still.... go on a roller coaster ride and eat like crap.. you too can gain it all back! :) BUT I have realized that before I really didn't have the right attitude and it was all about convienence... now it's about being healthy. I understand there will be ups and downs and I'm prepared for them now... my big problem, so far, is that I have to plan. I need to plan meals well in advance so that I'm NOT searching for convenience. I'll get there... I need to have faith in myself. It took me a year to put it all on... and it's not coming off in a month! :) (I'll take 3 months! ha ha ha) :)

I'm pretty excited about this weekend as well. I'm driving down to Fredericksburg. :) WOO HOO... anyone want to go?

Monday, November 17, 2008

The History of Aprons

There have been several things these past few days that have really reminded me of my grandmother. She was just such an awesome woman whom I really admired. My mom sent me this and it just hit home so I wanted to share.

The History of APRONs

I don’t think our kids know what an apron is.

The principle use of Grandma's apron was to protect the dress underneath, because she only had a few, it was easier to wash aprons than dresses and they used less material, but along with that, it served as a potholder for removing hot pans from the oven.

It was wonderful for drying children's tears, and on occasion was even used for cleaning out dirty ears.

From the chicken coop, the apron was used for carrying eggs, fussy chicks, and sometimes half-hatched eggs to be finished in the warming oven.

When company came, those aprons were ideal hiding places for shy kids..

And when the weather was cold, grandma wrapped it around her arms.

Those big old aprons wiped many a perspiring brow, bent over the hot wood stove.

Chips and kindling wood were brought into the kitchen in that apron.

From the garden, it carried all sorts of vegetables. After the peas had been shelled, it carried out the hulls.

In the fall, the apron was used to bring in apples that had fallen from the trees.

When unexpected company drove up the road, it was surprising how much furniture that old apron could dust in a matter of seconds.

When dinner was ready, Grandma walked out onto the porch, waved her apron, and the men knew it was time to come in from the fields to dinner.

It will be a long time before someone invents something that will replace that 'old-time apron' that served so many purposes.


Grandma used to set her hot baked apple pies on the window sill to cool. Her granddaughters set theirs on the window sill to thaw. They would go crazy now trying to figure out how many germs were on that apron. I don’t think I ever caught anything from an apron.

Isn't that the truth? My grandmother wore aprons and made her own. We would go to Hancock's and buy the cheapest fabric we could find and she'd make them in a day. Sewing is another lost art that I loved sharing with my grandmother. I never had to buy Barbie clothes; my grandmother made mine and they were ALWAYS better! There was a time a while back that I had some of her aprons but I think I'd gotten rid of those... probably after watching one of those "clean up your messy house" type of shows where they tell you that holding on to THINGS doesn't bring the person back and if it's not useful, it's just clutter. Though I understand the mentality... sometimes having a touchstone to take you back down memory lane... well, it's kinda nice. Don't you think?

There are so many "things" of my grandmother's that I remember... I wish I had her old jewelry box... I remember as a girl that I thought everything in there was the most amazing treasure chest on the planet. It was something that held SCREW on ear ring. And mostly clip on jewelry because my grandmother was rather not keen on having someone poke a hole in her ear. I remember her bottom cabinet in the bathroom was full of powder. After she'd take a bath, she loved to just cover herself in powder -- probably why she always smelled so good. We'd buy her perfume for Christmas sometime and she just loved all the pretty bottles but was almost seemingly afraid to use it because it might run out. Her favorite "new" scent was Beautiful by Estee Lauder.

I remember her last Thanksgiving with us... I made her dressing -- she was famous for it -- and they went to bring her "home" from the nursing center she was at. Everyone let her have the first bite.. she smiled and said, "needs more salt." We all laughed... that was the first Thanksgiving that she didn't go all out and just cook for the masses.

Amazing that she would feed an ARMY in her tiny little house... and it was NEVER a problem... and she did it all with ONE oven... a 4 burner stove and not a "formal" room in the house... I loved Thanksgiving at her house... It's so sad that my boys will never know or understand holidays like that again.

Thursday, November 13, 2008


Don't do what you'll have to find an excuse for. ~Proverb


My mom sent me this in a Power Point and I realized it's too good not to post here. So enjoy.

First I was DYING to finish high school and start college...

And then I was DYING to finish college and start working...

Then I was DYING to marry and have children...

And then I was DYING for my children to grow old enough so I could go back to work...

But then I was DYING to retire...

And now, I'm DYING... and suddenly I realized... I FORGOT TO LIVE.

Please don't let this happen to you.

Appreciate your current situation. Thank GOD for the good AND BAD in your life. If you are living for God, your current situations are working for good. Remember that EVERYDAY is a day of thanksgiving. Gif God the thanks and praise for what He is doing in your life right now. Perhaps something is amiss or has gone awry, but the Lord God is in control and he will never leave you nor forsake you.

While you are in the "now"... God is in the "not yet."

Coming up for air... again

I've made an important decision in my life and so I've been pretty much neglecting most everything else -- that is secondary -- to get to whatever I needed to do to make this happen. I've decided to homeschool Joshua. I'd been considering it pretty much since he started school this year. I don't agree with the methodology of their vocabulary/spelling program. I don't like the way they've instructed him to write the alphabet. I don't agree with the entire idea of teaching these children around a TEST rather than teaching them for the sake of providing them an awesome foundation which to build up on. I live in Texas where they have the TAKS test. Since the 3rd week of school, it appears this test is brought up daily in class.... "if you don't master this, you won't pass the TAKS" or "this is on the TAKS, if you don't get this, you won't go to the 4th grade." With this kind of input from the children's leaders, it's no wonder that on TAKS days, there are children at this school in the nurse's office throwing up FROM STRESS! Stress in the THIRD GRADE. It's ridiculous. Couple that with the fact that about once a week, they are asking for donations for something... and their methodology of punishment is ridiculous. You really can't just TALK some things away. The music teacher... I have NEVER seen her smile. Why is she in teaching if she hates her job so much?

Then I had an epiphany. I was actually terrified of having my son's future in my hands. And I realized what a moronic thought that was... I should be MORE terrified of having his future in someone ELSE's hands.

NOW I will have the opportunity to engage in daily bible studies and we can talk about God and not have all the other "agendas" being forced upon him by the "California" state of mind that is slowly trying to take hold and make things main stream that certainly ARE NOT.

Yesterday, I went and met with a great friend of mine, Dee, and had lunch with her and her two adorable children... Tyler and Trinity. She's a veteran homeschooler and co-coordinator of a Christian Homeschool group. It's quite overwhelming but I know that in my heart of hearts, it's the right thing to do for Josh. He HAS friends... he IS socialized. I will keep him involved in outside activities so that he will have exposure to other children and social arrangements. I will also NOT continue to home school him forever... I really feel, however, that these early years... this is when it's most critical for him to be a sponge... and if the methods they are using to teach him just aren't working -- I need to intervene and make his experience a successful one.

So, now I've confessed, and I have a request in return -- prayers. :) Thanks!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


You have 2 cows.
You give one to your neighbor.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and gives you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and sells you some milk.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both and shoots you.

You have 2 cows.
The State takes both, shoots one, milks the other, and then throws the milk away...

You have two cows.
You sell one and buy a bull.
Your herd multiplies, and the economy grows.
You sell them and retire on the income.

You have two giraffes.
The government requires you to take harmonica lessons

You have two cows.
You sell one, and force the other to produce the milk of four cows.
Later, you hire a consultant to analyze why the cow has dropped dead.

You have two cows.
You sell three of them to your publicly listed company, using letters of credit opened by your brother-in-law at the bank, then execute a debt/equity swap with an associated general offer so that you get all four cows back, with a tax exemption for five cows. The milk rights of the six cows are transferred via an intermediary to a Cayman Island Company secretly owned by the majority shareholder who sells the rights to all seven cows back to your listed company. The annual report says the company owns eight cows, with an option on one more.
You sell one cow to buy a new president of the United States, leaving you with nine cows.
No balance sheet provided with the release.
The public then buys your bull.

You have two cows.
You go on strike, organize a riot, and block the roads, because you want three cows.

You have two cows.
You redesign them so they are one-tenth the size of an ordinary cow and produce twenty times the milk.
You then create a clever cow cartoon image called 'Cowkimon' and market it worldwide.

You have two cows.
You re-engineer them so they live for 100 years, eat once a month, and milk themselves.

You have two cows, but you don't know where they are.
You decide to have lunch.

You have two cows.
You count them and learn you have five cows.
You count them again and learn you have 42 cows.
You count them again and learn you have 2 cows.
You stop counting cows and open another bottle of vodka.

You have 5000 cows. None of them belong to you.
You charge the owners for storing them.

You have two cows.
You have 300 people milking them.
You claim that you have full employment, and high bovine productivity.
You arrest the newsman who reported the real situation.

You have two cows.
You worship them.

You have two cows.
Both are mad.

Everyone thinks you have lots of cows.
You tell them that you have none.
No-one believes you, so they bomb the **** out of you and invade your country. You still have no cows, but at least now you are part of Democracy....

You have two cows.
Business seems pretty good.
You close the office and go for a few beers to celebrate.

You have two cows.
The one on the left looks very attractive.

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Sack Lunches

I put my carry-on in the luggage compartment and sat down in my assigned seat.

It was going to be a long flight. "I'm glad I have a good book to read. Perhaps I will get a short nap," I thought.

Just before take-off, a line of soldiers came down the aisle and filled all the
vacant seats, totally surrounding me. I decided to start a conversation. "Where are you headed?" I asked the soldier seated nearest to me.

" Chicago - to Great Lakes Base. We'll be there for two weeks for special training, and then we're being deployed to Iraq "

After flying for about an hour, an announcement was made that sack lunches were available for five dollars. It would be several hours before we reached Chicago , and I quickly decided a lunch would help pass the time.

As I reached for my wallet, I overheard soldier ask his buddy if he planned to buy lunch. "No, that seems like a lot of money for just a sack lunch. Probably wouldn't be worth five bucks. I'll wait till we get to Chicago."

His friend agreed.

I looked around at the other soldiers. None were buying lunch. I walked to the back of the plane and handed the flight attendant a fifty dollar bill. "Take a lunch to all those soldiers." She grabbed my arms and squeezed tightly. Her eyes wet with tears, she thanked me. "My son was a soldier in Iraq ; it's almost like you are doing it for him."

Picking up ten sacks, she headed up the aisle to where the soldiers were seated.
She stopped at my seat and asked, Which do you like best - beef or chicken?"

"Chicken," I replied, wondering why she asked. She turned and went to the front of plane, returning a minute later with a dinner plate from first class. "This is your thanks."

After we finished eating, I went again to the back of the plane, heading for the rest room. A man stopped me. "I saw what you did. I want to be part of it. Here, take this." He handed me twenty-five dollars.

Soon after I returned to my seat, I saw the Flight Captain coming down the aisle, looking at the aisle numbers as he walked, I hoped he was not looking for me, but noticed he was looking at the numbers only on my side of the plane. When he got to my row he stopped, smiled, held out his hand, an said, "I want to shake your hand."
Quickly unfastening my seatbelt I stood and took the Captain's hand.

With a booming voice he said, "I was a soldier and I was a military pilot. Once, someone bought me a lunch. It was an act of kindness I never forgot." I was embarrassed when applause was heard from all of the passengers.

Later I walked to the front of the plane so I could stretch my legs. A man who was seated about six rows in front of me reached out his hand, wanting to shake mine. He left another twenty-five dollars in my palm.

When we landed in Chicago I gathered my belongings and started to deplane. Waiting just inside the airplane door was a man who stopped me, put something in my shirt pocket, turned, and walked away without saying a word. Another twenty-five dollars!

Upon entering the terminal, I saw the soldiers gathering for their trip to the
base. I walked over to them and handed them seventy-five dollars. "It will take you some time to reach the base. It will be about time for a sandwich. God Bless You."

Ten young men left that flight feeling the love and respect of their fellow travelers. As I walked briskly to my car, I whispered a prayer for their safe return. These soldiers were giving their all for our country. I could only give them a couple of meals. It seemed so little...

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life wrote a blank check Made payable to "The United States of America " for an amount of "up to and including my life." That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it."

... remember to thank and honor our soldiers... they're the reason we are the land of the FREE... because of the BRAVE!

Something quite powerful..

you must experience it to appreciate it. Check it out HERE

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Flashlight Walks

One of the treats I've introduced my boys to some evenings are what I call "flashlight walks." In essence, we take a walk, after dark, using a flash light. We've only done this a handful of times as I use it kind of as a reward for good behavior... it also goes hand in hand with how early we've eaten, how much work is yet to do but I have also discovered that it's an awesome way to bring some calm to my life and just get outside and breathe the night air. So... last night... away we went. I took my headlamp (flashlight on an elastic strap worn on the head). Josh had his super bright spotlight and Drew had my LED flashlight. We get a little further down the street and I realize that I'd never taught Josh the fun about watching for spider eyes.

Spider eyes?

Yes, spider eyes.

So I look into my neighbor's yard (2 doors down) and shine my headlamp over it -- it has something to do with the type of light in this headlamp but you can literally see HUNDREDS of little shiny spots in the grass reflecting back at you. They look like little Alexandrites just glittering in your light. I pointed a few out to Josh and he couldn't see them. So I took the headlamp off and handed it to Josh to wear... and he was immediately TRANSFIXED on the idea that in any yard ... there are literally HUNDREDS of spiders out.. we walked... adjusted the lamp and just tried to count how many there were... it's AMAZING.

So, instead of looking for all kinds of creatures, listening for sounds, watching for worms and bugs... we went on a spider walk last night and boy let me tell you... those were two excited boys. Especially when you zero in on one whose eyes appeared to be as big and bright but when you get there it's this TINY little thing.... maybe 1/4" in diameter... or when you get to find the ones that (inclusive of legs) are as big as a quarter... it was quite fun. The only ones taht really oogied me out were the ones that had all the little babies on their backs... I remember stepping on one a long time ago and I didn't know that's what they were and little baby spiders crawled EVERYWHERE... I FLIPPED out... and generally bugs don't bother me but that just creeped me out ... (like now, writing that... got covered with goosebumps! EWWW)))

So...spiderwalks -- try one today! :) Use an LED headlamp for the best visuals.... you can get them for $15 at Wal-Mart. Mine has a red light and then 3 settings to choose from for the LED lamps. It's worth every penny!

This guy freakin ROCKS

To quote Drew, I could listen to this brotha "all the day." He knows his shiz-nits and has a way to explain it that NO ONE could fail to comprehend! In other word -- HE ROCKS!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


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Cleaning out my computer files

Isn't it funny, not only do we have to clean out closets, drawers, toy chests and dryer lint traps. We must also clean out our computer files. I found a file that I wanted to save -- it was for a devotional I wrote in 2007 for my MOPS group.


Landy put out the call for someone to deliver the devotional today… deliver a devotional? In front of a room with relative strangers… speaking of something that I feel ill equipped to deliver… but heck – anyone know me knows that if in need, I’ll find a way.

So, I went about searching for something in my heart that I thought might touch someone in here… and then it hit me… just the simple power of faith and prayer… in being a woman, being a mom, being a wife, being a friend… the power of prayer is just something that until I guess you really experience the glory of God… you just have something to really look forward to. When we as Christians approach God, He still wants us to trust Him fully and understand that the solutions to our problems lie beyond our abilities. It is this recognition that releases the power of God. Prayer is an expression of the commitment and trust we have in God.

I was not raised in a church centered/oriented home. I went to church every other weekend with my dad… when I was older I began working and my typical Sunday was spent at my place of employment. It wasn’t until I was in my 20’s that I contemplated that there had to be something bigger and better than just me (amazing, I know)… and I began attending a Lutheran church in Colorado Springs. It was very contemporary and had a full band – how COOL! Going from a capella in the church of christ to a full band with a bass guitar and drums was just the icing on the cake to me and THAT was moving… THAT (for me) was worship… I was drawn to God then and there… Just as the a capella worship service didn’t appeal to me… formalized prayer doesn’t appeal to everyone – however even a capella or a 15 piece band… I believe the message really was the same – pray and give glory to God… take your worries to God… talk to God. I’m still a student of the bible so for me to sit up here and quote you bible verses would just be something that is just… bigger than I am… I did look up a few because I felt compelled to in my search … I’m by no means a theologian… though I’d like to be… among many other things… but the one thing that is a universal language like music is prayer…

Being the internet researcher that I am… I found these and wanted to share them with you…

The power of prayer is not the result of the person praying. Rather, the power resides in the God who is being prayed to. 1 John 5:14-15 tells us, "This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us - whatever we ask - we know that we have what we asked of him." No matter the person praying, the passion behind the prayer, or the purpose of the prayer - God answers prayers that are in agreement with His will. His answers are not always yes, but are always in our best interest. When our desires line up with His will, we will come to understand that in time. When we pray passionately and purposefully, according to God's will, God responds powerfully! Prayer is communicating with God. All you have to do is ask God for His help. Psalm 107:28-30 reminds us, "Then they cried out to the LORD in their trouble, and he brought them out of their distress. He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed. They were glad when it grew calm, and he guided them to their desired haven." There is power in prayer!

How much power? The power of prayer should not be underestimated. James 5:16-18 declares, "…The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective. Elijah was a man just like us. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops." God most definitely listens to prayers, answers prayers, and moves in response to prayers. Jesus taught, "…I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you" (Matthew 17:20). 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 tells us, "The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ." The Bible urges us, "And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints" (Ephesians 6:18).

Many of you don’t know me personally but I’ll share something with you -- in the recent past… I found a lump under my arm… I’m going today at 2pm for an appointment with the pancake doctors (mammographers) for a full diagnostic scan, mri and sonogram. I held in the fact that I’d found a lump from my family, my husband, my friends, but not my God… silently I prayed that it’d go away. Guess what – it didn’t. I finally felt that I needed to see my doctor and before I even made the call and all the rest fell into place, I put out an e-mail to my sisters in Christ to ask for prayers…. And I’ve had prayers flowing up … just for me ever since. It almost makes you feel special to just know that someone is sending a special message up to the Big Guy just on your behalf.

In the 19th Century, rescuing a drowning person from a pier presented certain logistical problems for lifeguards. They did not have the luxury of our modern rescue techniques and equipment. Instead, they used a "lifeline" system. When a lifeguard dove into the water after someone, he would tie a rope around himself and hand the other end to someone to hold. One stormy day, a lifeguard spotted a swimmer being swept under by the mighty ocean waves. In his haste, he forgot to tell someone, "hold the rope." Thus, as he went into the water, so did his lifeline. This lifeguard needlessly lost his life in the stormy ocean rage because of carelessness.

This story illustrates the importance of being consistent and faithful in upholding Christian workers through prayer. However, there is another lesson to be learned too. We should never rush off to do God’s work before we have adequate prayer support. As we serve the Lord, let us not forget to ask people to "hold our ropes."

And ever since I asked for someone to hold my hand in this walk of faith, I have felt the most complete sense of peace about the whole thing. You always here people say “give it to God”…and “pray about it” and I did… but only with a little help from my friends…helping hold my rope

The day that I’d called to schedule my appointment was like any other, chores, laundry… only the “what if” of this lump gave my simple non-serious life a violent shove INTO serious… as my eldest was off running wild in the woods with his dad, my husband was away for a trip to Vegas with his best friend to celebrate his birthday… I was alone with my 3 year old in a big house, with 3 fur babies… that night as I gave him a bath… I took a moment – and for anyone that knows me… I NEVER stop to just take a moment. The reality of the “what if” hit me and I didn’t want to miss out on anything of this little miracle’s life… as I watched him play in his bath with his Power Ranger toys and Buzz Lightyear action figures… without a care in the world… total faith in me… in the security of his home… what if this were serious… what if this were the dreaded “c” word… what if I wasn’t here for him for the big milestones in his life… what if… and none of that even seemed to be a greater worry than… what if I hadn’t asked someone to pray for me… and with me… that I will get through whatever this is…

The power of prayer… and faith in those praying for you is something amazing.

God's help through the power of prayer is available for all kinds of requests and issues. Philippians 4:6-7 tells us, "Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." If you need an example of a prayer, read Matthew 6:9-13. These verses are known as the Lord's prayer. The Lord's prayer is not a prayer we are supposed to memorize and simply recite to God. It is only an example of how to pray and the things that should go into a prayer - worship, trust in God, requests, confession, protection, etc. Pray for these kinds of things, but speak to God using your own words.

The Word of God is full of accounts describing the power of prayer in various situations. The power of prayer has overcome enemies (Psalm 6:9-10), conquered death (2 Kings 4:3-36), brought healing (James 5:14-15), and defeated demons (Mark 9:29). God, through prayer, opens eyes, changes hearts, heals wounds, and grants wisdom (James 1:5). The power of prayer should never be underestimated because it draws on the glory and might of the infinitely powerful God of the universe! Daniel 4:35 proclaims, "All the peoples of the earth are regarded as nothing. He does as he pleases with the powers of heaven and the peoples of the earth. No one can hold back his hand or say to him: 'What have you done?'"

I wanted to close with a little sing-songy prayer that I thought would give you a second way to look at the way you do pray and how to count your many blessings that you have… you always want your children to take time to stop and smell the roses… and sometimes it’s time that we as moms do it too… life is what happens when you’re busy making plans.

A Moms Prayer
Dear Lord,
It's such a hectic day, With little time to stop and pray.
For life's been anything but calm since You called me to be a Mom. Running errands, matching socks, building dreams with wooden blocks, cooking, cleaning, finding shoes and other stuff that children lose…
Fitting lids on bottled bugs, wiping tears and giving hugs.
A stack of last week's mail to read, so where's the quiet time I need?
Yet, when I steal a moment, Lord, just at the sink or ironing board,
to ask the blessings of Your grace, I see then, in my small one's face,
that you have blessed me all the while, and I stoop to kiss that precious smile. ~Author Unknown~

Monday, November 3, 2008

Keller PD Tour

Today my Bears and I went for a tour of the Keller Police Department. It was interesting and we learned lots of fun facts about being a police officer in general, as well as being one specifically in Keller. The boys took a tour... got to see the inside of a car, check out a motorcycle, look at where they process evidence and how they process evidence, see the property storage area, the Chief's office, the door to the jail, the dispatch call center and the interview rooms. It was actually quite interesting and I hope they learned a lot. Thanks to Officer Scott Bradburn. What a guy! I'm so thankful for the men in blue on our streets!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

T Minus... 3....2....1... BLAST OFF!!!

Today was the annual Pack 317 Rocket Launch. It was lots of fun. We had a good turn out. The Dallas Area Rocket Society came out to host the event for us. They're an AMAZING group and their knowledge is just... well, no pun intended but it blows me away!

Today something special happened also -- Drew got to attend! :) This was HIS first rocket launch!

Unfortunately, with all the other "stuff" we had going on over the weekend and whatnot, I didn't have a rocket fully built for BOTH boys so I grabbed them, drove to Michaels and bought some "quick to assemble" kits... one of them took 45 minutes! UGH... So, needless to say, we had ONE assembled rocket and 3 more kits to assemble for future launches! We were 5 minutes late and had ONE small rocket but three engines for it. So at least each kiddo could at least launch one rocket. One's better than none, right?

Here is Josh's launch (small -- not that monster next to it)

And this is Drew's set up

Fix THIS dude

What do you think? Should we pull out?

Perhaps the U.S. should pull out of Chicago ?

Body count in the last six months:

292 killed (murdered) in Chicago;
221 killed in Iraq.

Who Runs it: Senators: Barack Obama & Dick Durbin
Rep: Jesse Jackson Jr.,
Illinois Gov: Rod Blogojevich,
Illinois House leader Mike Madigan,
Illinois Atty. Gen. Lisa Madigan (daughter of Mike),
Chicago Mayor Richard M. Daley (son of Mayor Richard J. Daley)
..... leadership in Illinois .....all Democrats.

Thank you for the combat zone in Chicago. Of course, they're all blaming each other! Can't blame Republicans; there aren't any!

State pension fund $44 Billion in debt, worst in country.
Cook County (Chicago) sales tax 10.25% highest in country. (Look 'em up if you want).
Chicago school system rated one of the worst in the country.

This is the political culture that Obama comes from in Illinois . And he's gonna 'fix' Washington politics for us?

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Coming up for air...

This last month has felt like a complete blur. I feel as if instead of being the proactive woman that I am... the list maker...the planner. I became, April, the fire woman. I just felt like I was literally running from place to place putting out fire after fire. This has been one non-stop jam-packed month. I've enjoyed it but I am SO HAPPY THAT IT IS OVER!!!

Yesterday was a whirl wind. Although, I did get to take Drew to the pumpkin patch with his class at school a Monday or so ago (geez, it feels like it's been a month and it was only like 10 days ago), it wasn't my FAVORITE pumpkin patch so I asked my friend Sarah and her kiddos to go with us to ANOTHER pumpkin patch. :) We headed out on Halloween afternoon only to hit some TMS (Texas Motor Speedway) traffic (UGH) and so we got there about 20 minutes later than we'd intended. BUT... it was fun. :) Here's proof.

This is Drew and his buddy, Noah, in the train station before we departed.

This is our little train ride around to the pumpkin patch.

A horrible picture of me but hey, it's the best I can do when a) he's supposed to be SITTING in the seat behind me and b) the train is moving and c) I'm the one who always has the camera!

Tell me THIS doesn't look like they're having a blast?!

Very cool pirate ship set-up.


Dragging the wagon around that carried ONE mini, palm pumpkin.

I swear these inflatable jump-on/obstacle courses look like some kind of inflatable anatomy system... and this is Drew entering the esophagus.

...and so I guess this is him coming out of the... ewww.. nevermind.

Loved the slides

THE Pumpkin Express

I loved this picture, not because it's super high quality...but because Noah and Drew are in the hay maze. And they're BOTH in the same shot... Noah - left and Drew - right.

He loved crawling through the old petrified log.

We walked over to get some hot dogs and drinks and the boys got painted (Drew won't let someone paint his face but he did get a ghost on his arm). Then when we were leaving we were getting dive bombed with bees. He FLIPPED OUT. I think they were attracted to the foil on the hot dog so I wadded it up in a ball and hid it in my pocket and we seemed to be okay after that. It was really a scare for him though. Poor kid, he totally gets it honestly but he had two LAND ON HIM and... that'd freak me out! :) We came home and I went STRAIGHT to work on Josh's costume. :)

If you ask Drew what they were for Halloween, he'll tell you they were the "mummy brudders." :)


I've been considering homeschooling both of my boys next year for a MULTITUDE of reasons... and then I found this on a site I frequent... check it out..

What is a teacher?

Obama said,
"the single most important factor in determining a child's achievement is not the color of their skin or where they come from; it's not who their parents are or how much money they have. It's who their teacher is."

Since definitions matter, I thought I'd repost my definition of a teacher.

A teacher is somone who can...

--Give a hug without getting arrested.
--Bandage a knee without calling the school nurse.
--Change a lightbulb without calling the custodian.
--Make the children wash the bathrooms.
--Have a relationship with the principal without getting fired.
--Teach a child's mind while capturing their heart.
--Teach what they believe in and believe in what they teach.
--Meet the child's need and not worry about meeting the state guidelines.
--Commit to a lifetime of work without pay.
--Pray! in class, out loud, with the children and the ACLU can't say a word.

There is is only one that can fill that job description.

Here's your sign...

I can't believe STUPID people are allowed to vote too... sometimes, stupidity is just ... scary.