Thursday, December 6, 2007

Today's Feast for the Brain

I saw this on the Certain Uncertainty's blog @ and thought I'd play along.

How much money do you plan to spend this upcoming holiday season?

Well, I had every intention of keeping it reasonable and even started a Christmas Club account last year to pay for this year. Let's just say that I have already spent what was in my Christmas account, and maybe a few hundred more, but I'm done and I didn't charge any of it. So, that at least is a very good thing.

What was the last television show you watched, and was it good?

The last show I watched was a re-run of Iron Chef America, battle sugar. It was good, even the second time through.

If you had to paint the walls of your living room tomorrow, what color would you choose?

Something much lighter than I have now, probably a sage green. The living room has the most ugly, dark wallpaper. urgh. Sadly, I picked the wallpaper! In my defense, it was chosen and hung about 12 years ago, and the color of the wallpaper reflects my mood at that time in my life. I hate it and want to change it, but alas, my dh is not the handy sort and it's a big project to take on myself, so it's staying for the time being.

Main Course
Name something clever or practical you have thought of that should be invented, but hasn’t yet.

I have no idea.

List 3 things you would like to receive as gifts this upcoming holiday season.

1. Gift cards to clothing stores like Macy's or Talbot's.

2. A new bathroom floor

3. Laminate flooring in my dining room.

None of these things are likely to materialize, but a girl can dream, right?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007


I did it! I found a "WOW" gift for my hard-to-buy-for-tech-geek husband. At least I think it'll be a wow gift. I can't go into details here, because he might read the blog between now and Christmas. He doesn't usually, but with my luck, he'll decide to check in and lo and behold find out what his present is.
I had already bought him a gift in October that was sure to be a WOW, but stupidly I had it shipped to the house and not to my office. He works from home and there is no way he would not see the package before I did. The box was a dead give-away, so I had to give him his present early. It was a GPS, and he was totally surprised and excited to have it. We've already put it to good use, especially with my trips to Boston to see the TMJ specialist out there. I'm just so upset that I couldn't surprise him for Christmas.
But, today, I got an email for this cool site that shop at occasionally. For the heck of it, I decided to see what they had to offer - especially since it was $5 off a $35 purchase. And, there it was. The coolest gift. He won't be expecting anything like it. I'm so excited!
I'll post after Christmas with his reaction. I hope he likes it as much as I think he will!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

It's a Wonderful Life

Why, oh why, didn't anyone warn me what a tear-jerker this movie is?


It is December 1, and I can officially start decorating and getting my home ready for Christmas. Now, mind you, I have been listening to Christmas music since the Monday before Thanksgiving, and my Christmas cards are done and were mailed on November 29. I have only stocking stuffers left to buy, and I am done with the "have tos" of Christmas. Now, the fun begins!

My dh bought me a beautiful advent calendar for my birthday. Here's a pic....

Behind each tiny door is a piece of the nativity scene. Alternately, the scene can be set up, and tiny treats placed behind each door. I haven't decided how I want to do it yet.

My Christmas baby and I can hardly wait to set it up and decorate. My baby's birthday is in 10 days; she'll be six. I can't believe it. Where did the time go?

My teenagers are already rolling their eyes at me when I suggest that we all decorate the tree. I guess when you're a teen, stuff like decorating for Christmas is just lame. Oh, well, I never said they had to LIKE it, but I want them to participate and participate they will! I bet they'll enjoy it once they get going (a bribe for dinner out doesn't hurt either).

I love, love, love Christmas. How about you?

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

A Christmas Movie Poll

Ok, I am not really a TV or movie person, but something about Christmas makes me want to dig up the movies I grew up watching at Christmas time. So, here's the gig. What movies say "It's Christmas" to you? Please leave me your list in the Comment section. I am itching to get watching some great Christmas flicks!

To get you started, here are some of mine:

1. The Year Without a Santa Claus (my all-time favorite)
2. The Santa Clause (with Tim Allen)
3. Santa Claus is Coming to Town
4. Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer
5. Frosty the Snowman

Friday, November 2, 2007

New Car!!!!

I was in an accident in August. The accident was a hit and run and my car was totaled as a result. That's my car over there to the left... .nice, huh?

Dh and I were finally able to afford to replace our car and just picked up our new wheels this week! Here's a pic of our new car.

I know it's big and yes, it will take some getting used to driving it, but I really like it a lot! Lots of room for our kids, their friends, and their stuff!

I feel really blessed by God. Not only did I survive the accident with minor injury (broken finger and some TMJ symptoms), but now we have a really neat car!

A Storm is Coming

It's been a long time since we have seen even the remnant of a hurricane in the Northeast, but apparently one is on the way. People are preparing for high winds, heavy rains, and power outages. There's a certain something in the air - people are bracing for something. The weather people are saying to expect several inches of rain. We have canceled our fellowship event at the church. My dh has stored anything that was out in the yard that may go flying due to high winds.

This might sound sick, but I love a good storm. Mind you, I don't enjoy being in the throes of a full-fledged hurricane. I've been through those before and it's not something I care to repeat. But, there's nothing like a good rainstorm when you and your family are comfy and cozy at home. Part of me hopes the weather people are wrong (they often are when it comes to crazy New England weather) because I have lots to do that involves going outside of my home. I won't be doing any of it if the storm hits.

With any luck, we won't lose power and I can cook, clean, and bake. I love the smell of baked goods on a cold, dreary, rainy day. Nothing cures the blues better than something warm and sweet from the oven!

Monday, August 20, 2007

I've been tagged...hooray!

Thanks, Kay, for the tag. I love being makes me feel wanted!

One-Word Responses Meme

1 Where is your cell phone? purse
2 Relationship? married
3 Your hair? multi-colored
4 Work? always!
5 Your sister? fun!
6 Your favorite things? kids
7 Your dream last night? unremarkable
8 Your favorite drink? water
9 Your dream car? convertible
10 The room you're in? dining
11 Your shoes? everywhere
12 Your fears? fewer
13 What do you want to be in 10 years? godlier
14 Who did you hang out with this weekend? friend
15 What are you not good at? sports
16 Muffins? absolutely
17 Wish-list item? house
18 Where you grew up? home
19 The last thing you did? talk
20 What are you wearing? clothes
21 What are you not wearing? glasses
22 Your pet? sleeping
23 Your computer? laptop
24 Your life? predictable
25 Your mood? better
26 Missing? sons
27 What are you thinking about? finances
28 Your car? black
29 Your kitchen? ancient
30 Your summer? done
31 Your favorite color? teal
32 Last time you laughed? today
33 Last time you cried? earlier
34 Last school? BCC
35 Love? hard
36 Tag? Jen

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Cna yuo raed tihs?

Cna yuo raed tihs?Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can. fi yuo cna raed tihs, yuo hvae a sgtrane mnid too.

i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno't mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt!

I saw this cool tidbit on the website and just had to share.

So, can you read it? Leave a comment and let me know!

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Hi there

That's all. Just hi. I'm a little bored at work and really don't have anything intelligent to say, so I'll just say hi.

Saturday, August 4, 2007

Taking the plunge

Well, with all my griping about money earlier this week, we have taken a leap of faith. We have enrolled my middle son in a Christian school. I don't know what possessed me to even think of it, much less consider it, yet here I am, fresh out of a meeting with the principal and head teacher, with a stack of papers to fill out and return with a $300.00 check.

When the idea came to mind, I quickly dismissed it, thinking that my son would never agree to it. He is a social butterfly, and the school we are enrolling him in is very small. Like 35 children in the whole school small. Goodness, his public school homeroom alone had 25 students in it.

I never in my wildest dreams thought my son would agree to such a change.

Not to mention the fact that he will now have to wear a uniform. This child lives in jeans and t-shirts. He's only worn dress pants and a shirt and tie a handful of times in his whole life. He did not hesitate to tell me AGAIN that yes, he would like to transfer to this school. He didn't care about having to wear a uniform.

The next obstacle, which I thought sure would kill the deal was the issue of his hair. My middle child has the most beautiful hair I have ever seen on a boy. And it's long. He likes it long. In fact, it took weeks of coaxing AFTER SCHOOL finished in June to have him cut his bangs and clean up the split ends. We had about three inches cut off, and it's still long. I'm not kidding. This kid loves his hair, and he loves it long. Trouble is, in Christian school, it has to be short. Or so I have been told. He agreed, without much hesitation (there was some) to cut his hair. You could have knocked me over with a feather when he agreed to that.

Come to find out, after our meeting with the principal, his hair is fine the length it is so long as he cuts the bangs so that he can see. They are ok with the length in back - their issue is that it not cover his eyes and it has to look neat.

All these things have led us as a family to believe that this child simply must attend this school. Every obstacle has been addressed and removed. The only issue that remains is money. We can swing it, but it will be a juggling act. Not to mention that teen camp is coming up and I am sending both boys to the tune of $250.00 for the week.

So, here I am. Trusting God to provide the funds for this new venture. Tuition and camp will take a chunk out of our savings - savings that I find some small measure of comfort in having. Maybe that's why God is having me tap into it, so that I can trust HIM and not the money in the bank.

Someday, maybe, I'll have that nest egg I've always wanted but seems to elude me. Or maybe my life will be spent trusting God for my finances. Either way, I know He won't let me down. As King David said "I have never seen the righteous forsaken or their children begging for bread."

May my life be a testament to God's love and grace; may I walk righteously before Him. He will not let us down.

Monday, July 30, 2007


Ten things on my mind this morning, in no particular order:

1. Will I ever get out of debt?

2. Will I ever be able to lose weight?

3. How come I feel so miserable?

4. My son told me yesterday that God provides for our needs...not our wants. I need to think about that some more and get my priorities straight based on that statement, which I know is true, but I am still in denial.

5. I don't want to be like a mule - stubborn, unteachable, always bucking.

6. I want to be like a tamed stallion - powerful, strong, beautiful, yet under control. There is something to be said for being under the control of your Master...quiet strength...

7. I want to get out of debt. We are not in trouble, but there isn't much extra $, that's for sure.

8. I'm fixating on $ right now, especially with school starting in a month. I have three children to clothe and buy supplies for. Thank God that my oldest son's dad agreed, and has already purchased, the special uniforms and shoes that are required by the vocational high school.

9. God provides for my needs.

10. I need to stop worrying because God provides for me. Always has. In the most amazing ways, sometimes.

I sure do love HIM!

Thursday, July 26, 2007

Monday Madness (Yes, I know it's Thursday)

Since I also am creatively challenged, I lifted this meme from Loop de Loops blog, which she in turn lifted from Monday Madness.

This one is about food:

1. Are there any weird "food rules" you have? Feel free to list as many as you like.

Well, after a lifetime of dieting (mostly unsuccessfully) I am sure I have lots of food rules that don't seem like food rules to me but really are. For instance, I used to love fettucine alfredo. I cannot bring myself to eat it now because I know how incredibly fattening and bad for your heart it is. I don't eat chocolate, but I love chocolate. I always analyze food in my head before I eat it. Often, said analysis will cause me to pass it by. It amazes me that with all my food rules and issues, I'm still overweight. But that's a different post altogether.

2. When you were growing up, what ONE thing did your parents always remind you of, when it came to meal time (or cooking)?

That I should eat everything on my plate because there were starving children in Africa. Looking back, I see that that argument makes absolutely no sense? How would my eating everything on my plate help starving children in Africa? Shouldn't I send them food instead?

3. Is there anyone you know whose food you won't eat (for one reason or another)?

I don't think so.

4. Is there anything you "specialize" in cooking, that people actually ask for?

Well, I make a great lemon raspberry pie, and a gingerbread trifle that is awesome, if I say so myself. Do people actually request it? No, not really. They do however, always ask for my husband's potato salad.

5. When you were growing up, what one meal do you remember as being your favorite?

New England Boiled Dinner - inevitably, though, even time my mom made it, I got sick BEFORE eating it, so I never got to enjoy it right away. I always got the leftovers.

6. Today, what is your IDEAL meal?

Grilled salmon, rice pilaf, and roasted veggies if I'm being "good."
If I choose to indulge, then I'll have Thanksgiving dinner, with all the fixings.

This meme comes from Monday Madness

Ethical Question

These sorts of things happen to me all the time...well, I've never actually found $100 just lying around, but I am often faced with ethical dilemnas. So, the question of the day is:

If you found a $100 bill on the sidewalk, what would you do?

a/put it in my wallet, hello new shoes!

b/Pass it by, gross, germs!

c/Give the money to charity.

d/Add it to my savings.

I would definitely pick it up and give the money to charity. I would feel incredibly guilty using or saving the money for myself, knowing that it didn't belong to me. The ideal option would be to find the person who lost it, but if it's just lying on the sidewalk, chances are good the person would be long gone.

I was recently faced with this question, only the amount of money in question was $5. Yep, just $5. I was at the self check-out lane at our local grocery store. I paid for my purchase in cash. As I counted by change, I noticed that the machine had counted out $5 too much. The $5 bills were crisp and new, so I imagine they just stuck together.

After a momentary lapse in judgment wherein I thought about just stuffing the cash in my wallet, I realized it was wrong. Did I want to sin (steal) $5? Was it really worth the guilt for $5? Would I honor God by making excuses for keeping it? The answer to all those question is NO.

So, once I got my head on straight again, I located the supervisor and handed her the $5, explaining that the machine had given me too much change. She just looked at me with the most interesting look on her face. Something like "You're crazy, lady, for telling me you got $5 too much."

I am quite certain that the moment I turned my back, the supervisor pocketed the cash, all the while thinking I was crazy for even mentioning it.

Well, she may think I'm crazy, but I feel that I did the right thing, honored God by it, and took another tiny step toward holiness by showing integrity.

So, what would you do if you found $100? $5? a quarter?

"But my God shall supply all your needs, according to HIS riches in glory."

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

This is what makes me obsessive-compulsive

Today's blogger challenge on 2Peas was to write about 5 things you do EVERY DAY without fail. Since I love lists, I'm all for this challenge.

Every day I....

1. Take my thyroid med

2. Go to the bathroom LOL

3. Check my e-mail and surf the Web

4. Pray

5. Get dressed

All of these things are done by 7:30 a.m. on a typical morning.

Actually, the more I think about things I do every day, the more I realize how methodical I can be. I like routine for the most part, but always leave some room for spontenaiety. I like surprises every now and again, but true to my OCD-ness, I like to have some semblence of control over surprises and spontaneous happenings. Makes sense to me.

I've been tagged - SEVEN

I've been tagged by Loop de loops, so here goes:

List 7 random things about myself. This isn't going to be easy, you know. I don't really like self-examination.

1. I have obsessive-compulsive tendencies. It's true. Ask anybody.

2. I cannot think if my surroundings are chaotic. I thrive on orderliness. Unfortuntately, the only place that is orderly in my life is at work, go figure.

3. I have struggled with my weight for more than 2/3 of my life. Being I'm not that old, that's a LONG time.

4. I am a loyal friend.

5. I need a manicure and pedicure. It's been way too long since I've had either. Nice visual, eh?

6. I want to go back to school in the worst way.

7. I enjoy a challenge, especially if it is something that makes me use my left brain.

There you have it. Seven random things about me. Fascinating, huh?

I am now supposed to tag other bloggers. Since I don't think that anyone that hasn't already been tagged actually reads my blog, I have no idea whom to tag. But, here goes, maybe I'll get lucky:

1. The Edge of Reason
2. Greg
3. Jen Shunk
4. Little Women
5. A Beautiful Mess
6. Ali Edwards
7. Becky Higgins

Each blogger should list 7 random facts/habits about themselves. People who are tagged need to then report this on their own blog with their 7 random facts as well as these rules. They then need to tag 7 others and list their names on their blog. They are also asked to leave a comment for each of the tagged, letting them know they have been tagged and to read the blog.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Blast from the past

Huh? Can you repeat that?

Your Linguistic Profile:

45% General American English

40% Yankee

10% Upper Midwestern

0% Dixie

0% Midwestern

Thursday, June 7, 2007

It's A Wonderful Life

Today's blogger challenge - what one wonderful thing happened to you today...

Well, the day is still young as I type this, but so far today the most wonderful thing that happened was being able to go out in the sunshine and enjoy the wind blowing through my hair as I drove around town doing a bunch of little errands. One errand of which included seeing my friend, Lucy, whom I hardly EVER see but always enjoy her company. We had a nice visit and got caught up on life. I hope it won't be another year before I see her!

Otherwise, I am happy that things are quiet and mundane. Too much excitement often means too many crises; I can do without those.

How about you? What wonderful things happened to you today?

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

What Do You Love?

I know, I know, it's been a long time since I posted anything of any great worth and I know all my rabid fans are just waiting with bated breath for a dose of intellectual ramblings. This is not the place for such things LOL

Since I enjoy making lists and crossing things off said list, I will now entertain you with a list of my current favorite songs. Please try and contain your excitement. I know it's more than you could have hoped for, but it will be ok, really. I promise.

So, here it is in all it's glory:

1. By His Wounds - Mac Powell

2. Holy, Holy, Holy - Kutless




Ok, by now you must be thinking - hey? where's the list? What's going on here? What's the matter with my computer?

Truth is, I don't really have favorites of anything. I enjoy many things, but I cannot in all honesty say that something (anything) is my favorite. I thought about changing my list of five favorites from songs to restaurants or colors or books, but sadly, I can't think of five FAVORITES in any of those categories. How sad is that?

I used to say I "loved" many things - bubble baths, scented candles, Bath & Body Works stuff, chocolate, Italian food, the beach. Alas, now I can truly say that while I enjoy these things, they do not hold the attraction they once did. I am hard-pressed to say I LOVE anything, because it is too strong a word to be used on temporal things. I ENJOY these things and more, but do I LOVE them?

I do what/whom I love, though. That is a much easier question to answer. I love my God. I love my husband. I love my children. I love that God's love for me will never change, regardless of what I do or don't do. I love that my relationship with God is always growing and changing.

I have learned over the past year or so that what I enjoy and what I love should be two different things. When I "love" earthly, temporal things, I run the risk of that thing or things choking out my love for God. Even my love for my husband and my children can become unhealthy if I put it above my love for God. There must be a balance.

God commands us to love Him with all our heart, soul, mind, and strength AND THEN to love others as ourselves. God must come first, followed by others, not the other way around. Things have no place in that list. Why? Because as humans, we tend to want to worship and adore those things we can see, feel, touch, or taste. We want something tangible. We are too easily swayed by stuff.

Lest anyone reading this think I am being legalistic, or going fanatical or something crazy like that, fear not. I did not say that I cannot ENJOY things. I do enjoy many things. I enjoy going out to eat. I enjoy surfing the Web. I enjoy hanging out with my friends. I enjoy scrapbooking. I enjoy reading. I enjoy having a clean house. I enjoy feeling sunshine on my face. I enjoy peace and quiet. I enjoy going to the movies on occasion if there is a film worth seeing.

I am just being careful with how I word things. My LOVE should be reserved for God and then my husband and children and then others. Once my love is in the right place, I can then enjoy the abundant life promised me by God. And it is abundant! He has blessed me beyond my wildest expectations. Loving God is not a chore. Loving the world and the things in it is - the world is a cruel taskmaster who is never satisfied.

God wants my love. He shall have it. No one deserves it more than He.

So, what do you love?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007


If these tests are to be trusted, then apparently I am quite balanced, mentally speaking. Interesting.

You Are 55% Left Brained, 45% Right Brained

The left side of your brain controls verbal ability, attention to detail, and reasoning.

Left brained people are good at communication and persuading others.

If you're left brained, you are likely good at math and logic.

Your left brain prefers dogs, reading, and quiet.

The right side of your brain is all about creativity and flexibility.

Daring and intuitive, right brained people see the world in their unique way.

If you're right brained, you likely have a talent for creative writing and art.

Your right brain prefers day dreaming, philosophy, and sports.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Two Things About Me

Today's Blogger Challenge on twopeas was "Two Things About Me."

Since I haven't felt like I have anything intelligent to say the past few days, I figured I'd give this a go... so, without further ado:

Two Names I Go by: Mom and Bet (sometimes Mom turns into "But, Mom....")

Two Things I am Wearing Right Now: Sandals and capris

Two Things I Want (or have) in a Relationship: Passion and Loyalty

Two of My Favorite Things to do: Scrapbooking and reading

Things I Want Very Badly At The Moment: More $$; time by myself. Not necessarily in that order

Two pets I have: Two cats

Two things I did last night: Grocery shopping and surfing (the Web)

Two things I ate today: Cranberry orange muffin and a handful of Fritos - not at the same time, though

Two people I just talked to last: My boss and my co-worker

Two Things I'm doing tomorrow: Going to a Mother's Day breakfast and CLEANING!

Two longest car rides: To Toronto, Canada and to Mt. Washington Valley, NH

Two Favorite Holidays: Christmas and Thanksgiving

Two favorite beverages: Mochas and water

Two favorite scrapbooking tools: My MM cutter and my fluid chalk inks

Two favorite scrappin companys: Basic Grey and My Mind's Eye

Sunday, May 6, 2007

You Are Cookie Monster

Misunderstood as a primal monster, you're a true hedonist with a huge sweet tooth.

You are usually feeling: Hungry. Cookies are preferred, but you'll eat anything if cookies aren't around.

You are famous for: Your slightly crazy eyes and usual way of speaking

How you life your life: In the moment. "Me want COOKIE!"

Taking my cue from Loop de Loops (Kay), I took the above quiz. Those who know me know I can't resist a quiz, especially a personality quiz. I keep taking them, hoping to get a different answer, but no...I am consistently consistent. Oh, and I love COOKIE MONSTER, so I guess it's good that I am him.

Oh, yeah, and I am hungry!

Thursday, May 3, 2007

Where In The World......

would I like to be right now?

If money were no object, I would love to go to Europe. Not just one country, but lots of them...Portugal, Spain, Germany, France, Switzerland, Ireland, Austria, and Italy. I would also love to go to Israel.

I want to walk on streets where history was made. I want to see the ports the navigators sailed from, praying they wouldn't fall off the edge of the Earth. I want to see the site where the Berlin wall once stood. I want to see the Eiffel Tower and the vineyards of France. I want to see the Swiss Alps. I want to see the rolling green of Ireland and kiss the Blarney Stone. I would love to visit Rome and see the ancient ruins. And I would love to visit Israel and see firsthand where the Biblical accounts actually happened! How cool would that be?

Alas, these are but pipe dreams, as there is no way I could ever afford it. So, instead, I fix my eyes on Heaven, which no doubt is infinitely more beautiful than anything we could ever hope to see on Earth.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The Scrapey-Thingy

You know what I mean - that lovely tool the dentist uses to get the gunk out from between your teeth and gums. The scrapey-thingy that makes a sound like fingernails going across a chalkboard, only you can't escape from it and make it stop because you are laying in a chair with a person hovering over you with a sharp scrapey-thingy.

What does this have to do with anything? Well, here's the deal. My dh preached a sermon two weeks ago and used this marvelous dentist's tool as an illustration. We can brush our teeth as often as humanly possible and do all we know to do to keep our teeth clean. Still, it is not good enough. We need a professional to get down in the nooks and crannies to get the bad stuff out so that our cosmetic/asthetic efforts are not in vain. No matter how hard we try, or how "good" we are, there is still junk in there. It's the same way with God.

We know what we need to do - pray, confess and repent of our sin, love others, meditate on His Word, etc. We might even do all of those things (sometimes all on the same day!) but there is still SOMETHING that we ignore or harbor or hide in our hearts, thinking that it's ok and that what we are doing is enough. Then God steps in and says that He is ready to take us a step further in our walk. No doubt, said growth will involve some pain. How much, I believe depends largely on us and how willing we are to be obedient. The more we fight Him and stamp our feet, the longer the journey.

Back to the scrapey-thingy. When God takes the scrapey-thingy to our lives, it is sometimes (often) painful. Yet, it is so very necessary. The gunk He is trying to scrape and rinse away from our lives will only hurt us in the end. The temporary discomfort of the cleaning process will generate great joy and eternal reward, if we are willing to let Him work.

Right now, God is using the scrapey-thingy on me. While I'm not particularly enjoying what I am going through, I am often reminded that it is for my own good. Once it's done and the nasty stuff is gone, I will have grown to be a bit more like Jesus- and that's a very good thing. Pray that I have a willing and obedient spirit - I don't want to be under the scrapey-thingy any longer than necessary!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Spring Has Sprung......FINALLY!

It is another glorious day here, 10:45 a.m. and already nearly 60 degrees. I love sunshine and warm weather (but not too hot!)

We are busy with spring clean-up around here. The backyard is full of piles of dried grapevines and metal posts derived from the cutting down of a portion of the grape arbor in the backyard. This arbor was HUGE, and was well established. The fruit it bore was simply too much for one family to use, especially when most of the family doesn't really like the grapes that come from it. Most of the harvest over the last few years has gone to waste; the ground underneath the arbor is well nourished!

So, dh is out there right now, cutting the metal posts into smaller, more manageable pieces. We are hoping to haul them to the steel scrap place later this week and cash them in. The vines and miscellaneous other trimmings will be put through a friend's chipper so that we have our own mulch. That will save us a lot of money in mulch for the rest of the yard.

I have been busy doing some spring cleaning. I really need to wash my windows, but I'm not THAT motivated yet. I'll get to them eventually, hopefully before summer comes, but you never know.

The kids are back to school this week. They are in the home stretch now. Only ten more weeks until summer vacation. Then, I will have a high schooler, a middle schooler, and a kindergartener! It doesn't get much more spread out that than. The next school year will be a very busy one, I'm sure.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Just what I needed....

Yesterday was very difficult for me. I have been struggling with some situations in ministry that just have me so confused. I don't understand why they are happening or even how they started. Yet the reality of it is that there are some difficult things going on and they must be overcome somehow.

I was really feeling like I just want to put my head in the sand or put myself to bed and stay there...I just want to be left alone.

In my travels, I checked in on the LPM blog (Beth Moore - Living Proof Ministries) and lo and behold, a commission from Beth spoken over the women attending the Columbia event last weekend.

I almost cried when I read it because it is just exactly what I needed to hear. So thank you, Beth, for sharing this with all of us in cyberspace. It was so timely and so encouraging to me... Here is the commissioning:

Count it a joy, Dear One
When life gets hard.
God is doing something huge!
He is also proving
That you are NOT a fake.
Be brave, Mighty Warrior.
Your God is with you!
When waves are crashing,
Stand to your feet,
Throw your head back
And feel the wind of the Spirit!
God is painting a masterpiece
With multi-colored trials.
Go forth and display
Divine special effects
To the great glory of God.

This excerpt is used with permission...for the full entry see

Sunday, April 15, 2007

What I'm Missing Right Now

I used to be a voracious coffee drinker until the dreadful day when I realized that caffeine just had to go. The palpitations I felt on a daily basis were the most convincing clue. I don't particularly enjoy the feeling of my heart racing. Funny, because I never noticed it before in the 20+ years I've been drinking coffee in all its various forms, including espresso.

Still determined to feed my coffee addition, I switched to mochas. You know, half cocoa, half coffee. I figured some octane in my cup was better than none. Got addicted to mochas, sometimes three or more cups a day. When the caffeine in that got to be too much, I switched to decaf mochas. Not bad, but no octane.

Then came the Daniel Bible study (by Beth Moore). She challenged us to give up something for a 12-week period of time, just like Daniel did. I thought long and hard about to give up. I wanted to give up something easy like aerobic exercise, but I easily give that up on my own. No great sacrifice there. I prayed. I decided to give up dessert in its various forms. You know, cake, cookies, ice cream, pie, pudding. I drew the line at chocolate, though.

Funny thing with me and chocolate. I love chocolate, but as much as I love it, I don't typically overdo it. I can make a candy bar last a week or more. If it's a good quality chocolate, a little piece is quite satisfying. I digress.

Alas, just giving up desserts was not enough. Deep down I knew that what I really need to give up, at aleast for a short time, was my mocha addiction. Everyone in my circle of friends knew my love for coffee. I always said coffee was my last vice and no way would I give it up.

I gave it up.

The first two weeks were hard, but not impossible. Not willing to admit defeat, I switched to straight decaf. Hazelnut decaf to be exact. Of course, by this time coffee just didn't taste that great to me anymore. Must have been the chocolate that clouded my judgment.

Fast forward about five months and I find myself in a situation where I feel that God is asking me to do another "fast." Food is often my crutch and I want to be free from that.

This time, after only a little arguing with God over what to fast from, I knew my answer. Chocolate - all things chocolate, including hot cocoa, mochas, Hershey kisses, chocolate chips, chocolate chip anything, M & Ms. You get the idea. Eliminating chocolate also effectively eliminates most desserts, which I have also decided to fast from.

This fast is for 30 days, until May 1. My husband is joining me with his own fast - he is fasting from anything spicy (hot). You see, he has this addiction to all things fire. If it has capsacin, he'll eat it in vast quanitities. The hotter the better. Chipotle? On everything. Habanero? You bet. On everything. He is a fire eater.

So, here we both are at the halfway mark of our fast. I can say that I haven't missed dessert all that much, or even chocolate for that matter. Very surprising. A few short months ago, I thought I woul dabsolutely die without them. Now, I am realizing it's not that vital to my existence that I have dessert or chocolate. Not to say that I never will. Never say never. But, I am praying that its hold over me has somehow been broken or at the very least loosened.

What I am missing is my Starbucks Hot Chocolate. I know, I know...the true chocolate lover would make hot chocolate from scratch with high quality Dutch process cocoa. But, when you are imbibing at work, such endeavors are quite impossible. Most powdered cocoa mixes are nasty. I agree. This one, however, is quite good. Very good, in fact, with hints of vanilla and a rich dark chocolate flavor. Quite good. I can probably do without dessert and M & Ms for a long period of time. I am, however, looking forward to being able to enjoy this drink again soon.

Coffee just isn't doing it for me. Who knew?

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Great Day

I love days like today. Days where I can get a lot accomplished. I love the feeling I get when things get done, especially those things that I hate doing and have avoided because of said intense dislike.

It is now 1 p.m. EST, and I have just sat down for the first time since 7:43 a.m. I have washed my kitchen floor on my hands and knees, with a sponge, one tile at a time. My floor was nasty. Those that know me IRL know that my kitchen is pretty big. It took almost an hour. It's done.

I have cooked three meals - chicken dumpling stoup (Rachael Ray recipe), mini meatloaves (14 of them) and ramen noodle soup for the kids (I'm babysitting two children in addition to my own today). I have washed the living room room - I cheated on this one and used the Swiffer. I vacuumed; I have washed more pots, pans, and Tupperware than I care to count.

I've made beds. I've cleaned my bathroom.

I've even rearranged our front room - my computer area is now in the corner and J's scrap table is in front of the picture window, closer to my scrap area. I hope with this move, she will be more inclined to "be an artist" in her own space, instead of trying to sit on my lap while I'm working on my own masterpieces. Time will tell.

Well, I better dash. I am sure there is more work to be the mountains of laundry that have been screaming my name since last night.

Friday, April 13, 2007

Ah, Relaxing.......

Today's blogger challenge is to write about something relaxing, or more specifically what I do to relax.

This is a very good question, because truthfully, I don't think I know how to relax or what that means, exactly. I simply cannot sit still, for when I do, I find myself waking up from a nap! If I'm not moving, I'm sleeping. I have two speeds -- full throttle and dead stop. I prefer full throttle.

I know I need to relax, or at least find a way to slow my mind down, especially at the end of the day. Waiting for the weekend just doesn't work because weekends are just crazy, plain and simple.

I love to scrapbook, and I find that if I just sit at my scrap table and work, I become much more pleasant. The trouble is, I'm often wound up so tight, that the thought of sitting and having fun seems wrong to me - I liken it to avoiding the Bubonic plague (in my own mind, of course. There's no such thing as the Bubonic plague anymore, is there? - time for a WIKI check, because you know I can't just sit and do nothing!)

Anyhow, I have given this some thought, and since the purpose of responding to a challenge is to answer the question, I suppose my answer has to be that I don't often relax, but I do enjoy a massage every now and then and that is REALLY relaxing! If I could afford it, I would get a massage as often as I get my haircut, every six weeks! More often than that, and I think it would lose is relaxingness, KWIM?

So, what do YOU do to relax? Leave a comment - maybe your suggestions will be just what I need to get me to relax!

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Some Quotes I Came Across Today

and very appropriate ones for where I am right now.

Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing. There is a time for silence. A time to let go... And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it's all over. --Gloria Naylor

We judge others by their behavior but ourselves by our intentions.--Stephen Covey

Monday, April 9, 2007

WIKI meme

My friend Kay tagged me on her blog, loopdeloops. It's my first meme! Thanks Kay (and yes, I am easily amused).

Here goes:

The rules are:1) Go to Wikipedia
2) In the search box, type your birth month and day but not the year.
3) List three events that happened on your birthday
4) List two important birthdays and one death
5) One holiday or observance (if any)
6) Tag 5 other bloggers to complete

Three events that happened on my birthday:

1. 1774 - First Continental Congress assembles in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
2. 1882 - The first United States Labor Day parade is held in New York City.
3. 1914 - World War I: First Battle of the Marne begins. Northeast of Paris, the French attack and defeat German forces who are advancing on the capital.

Two important birthdays and one death:

1735 - Johann Christian Bach, German composer (d. 1782)
1951 - Michael Keaton, American actor
1997 - Mother Teresa, Albanian missionary and humanitarian, recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize (b. 1910)


India - The birthdate of Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan is celebrated as Teacher's Day in India.

I don't have five bloggers to tag, so I'll pick the one I do have - Amy.


Today I want to talk about color.

The challenge question was: What colors are you gravitating toward lately? Which ones really move you? Which ones do you really like?

Lately, I have been gravitating toward greens and purples, sometimes used together, sometimes separately. However, my sister reminded me yesterday of the fundamental rule of color - TURQUOISE goes with everything. We learned this little tidbit of information at a class we took at Right at Home Scrapbooking two weeks ago. "When in doubt, go with turquoise. " And that works in your wardrobe, too, not just in scrapbooking. Time to add some color variety to my wardrobe, I guess. Supposedly, all this turquoise stuff will match what I already have.

That will take some getting used to, as it is not a color I normally relate to, which is a great segway to the next question.

Which colors really move me?/Which colors do I really like?

I am drawn to vibrant colors - red, blue, purple. Anything vivid, but not flourescent. Pastels just do not do it for me.

My other color family of choice would be earth tones. I love rich shades of brown, amber, gold, and rust. They remind me of autumn, which is my favorite time of year.

I wonder how turquoise fits in with that color scheme? Perhaps I should do a layout with these colors as an experiment.

Sunday, April 8, 2007

20 Things That Light Up My Soul

I got this challenge from the 2 Peas board, so here's my list in no particular order (except for the first one - He belongs there!)

1. JESUS - He loves me always; totally; completely; unconditionally. Without Him my soul would be dark and lifeless

2. My children's laughter

3. My husband's smile

4. Spending time with my friends

5. Online shopping, especially if there's a great sale and free shipping!

6. Starbuck's hot cocoa - that stuff rocks!

7. Date nights with my hubby

8. Scrapbooking

9. Writing

10. Bible study

11. Autumn - I love the clean, crisp air

12. Music - especially Christian rock, the louder and faster the better! My faves are Third Day, Kutless, Skillet, and Bleach. I will listen to just about anything though, except jazz.

13. Getting a great haircut

14. Seeing fruit in my children's lives. Those glimpses of godliness make parenting so worth it.

15. Driving, so long as it's wide open spaces. I don't do city traffic very well.

16. Reading a great book

17. Hugs

18. Kisses

19. Praise & worship

20. Christmas

I'm New To This

I've decided to join the blogger world, so here it is - my first post!

Today is Resurrection Sunday - the day my Lord rose from the dead to give me eternal life through His sacrifice on the cross!

It is a glorious day here on the East Coast - the sun is shining, but it is COLD - only 27 degrees. No sandals for this girl today; too bad, 'cuz my toes are done and ready to be shown off. Alas, New England weather is unpredictable, warm one day, cold the next. You just learn to go with the flow.

Well, that's all I can share for now. Gotta go get ready for services at church.