Thursday, December 20, 2007

My Mind is all a Swirl

I have so much flying through my mind right now! I was sick last week and the kids were under the weather this week; so I am totally thrown off. I am late/behind on sending out my Christmas cards. My shopping is behind and I totally need to go to the grocery! I have tonight and Sunday night to get stuff done, no pressure. I don't think I have ever been this behind. I did manage to buy some things online last week. I am hoping they make it on time....

On top of that, I have been seriously considering renting my house out. We have tossed the idea around for many years. We have recently met many people who have 1 or more rentals. A good friend of mine recently acquired her second rental property. Her realtor told her not to sell any of them right now,because of the market, and that renting was the way to go with this crappy market. I have read that the sell of homes are down 6.7% from this time last year. Due to the huge amount of foreclosures and the mortgage industries tightening of standards, there are more people out there renting than purchasing. So, I don't know.....We are both going to pray about it. Renting out your house can be a big deal. So the other half and I are going to pray about it ALOT and have dinner with my good friend K and her Hubs and hear how they have gone about having 3 mortgages and 2 sets of tenants. I have always wanted to have a rental property, weird I know. But they can afford you some financial security when you are older. The properties could also be sold at a later date and pay for C or G's college or any extra expenses we may incur due to G's delays. It's alot to think about. So we are praying about it. We also seem to be running into quit a few acquaintances that have a property or two and have been more than happy to share their experiences with me, which is lovely of them to do.
So my question to any of you is, have you ever had a rental property? If so what was your experience with that, tenants, lawyers, and realtors?


Saturday, December 15, 2007

Have Yourself and Eco-Friendly Christmas...

We are headed to a "Green" Christmas Party tonight with a gift exchange. My first thoughts when I was invited were: is this a spin on a white elephant but I bring something green, and that's a cute incorporation of the Christmas seasons use of the color green. It was good that I asked about the whole "white elephant" thing, because I was sooo wrong! It is to be an environmentally friendly gift. We have to be creative and the gift must be an,"interesting and fun gift that is either made from sustainable materials or will help in some way, by it's very use, to reduce energy consumption to put under the tree for a gift exchange." This struck me as a fun challenge. I mean it's easy to find eco-friendly things, but to find something "fun" and "creative" that seemed to pose more of a obstacle. So I have spent the past week racking my brain and scouring web sites. Last week I read a great article in our local paper that helped me on my journey.

According to the newspaper, "going green" for Christmas is the thing to do. So much so that the accounting company of Deloitte & Touche surveyed on the subject. They found that 12% of people in my state plan to buy more eco- friendly gifts this year. while 20% will use less plastic bags when they make their purchases. 19% of people, state wide, were planing on not wrapping their gifts with traditional wrapping paper. (It doesn't recycle, so it just sits and landfills.) It was good to see I was in good company this holiday season, but this didn't help with where I could find cool, green, gifts pronto! Further in the article I had my answer! It would seem that Home Depot, Target, Yahoo! and Walmart (?!) all have environmentally friendly products on their websites! How great is that?! So I perused Target, Home Depots, and Yahoo!. Great sites all. Great selections. Now I didn't end up buying anything from the site, though I may in the future. (I didn't have enough time for the shipping) But I did do something that I know to be easy on the planet and that is: I shopped local. There is a Wild Birds Unlimited not too far from me. On top of selling bird seed and bird things, they have a good selection of eco-friendly soaps, jewelry made from natural materials,and natural jewelry by women in Africa. So I chose from that and am putting my gift in a reusable tote. I think that meets all the requirements. We'll see. I am off to have a good time and I can't wait to see what everyone else came up with!

More Tips For a Planet Friendly Holiday:

  • Buy a potted Christmas Tree. Replant it in the spring or donate it to your local parks department.

  • Use LED lights on the tree. They use 90% less power that traditional lights, but they do cost more to purchase.

  • Make your own gift. Who doesn't like something so thought full as something made by hand? From candy, to soaps, to scarves, all ways a way to make it creative and personal.

  • Make your own wrapping paper. You can use the comics, maps, brown bags, ect. I did this one year using brown bags and paint. I painted the bags free hand and I used potato and rubber stamps. It was alot of fun!

Links to Websites listed above:

Home Depot

Yahoo! Green


Friday, December 14, 2007

O Christmas Card! O Christmas Card!

I was at a Christmas party several years ago. Someone there expressed how they found the end of year letters, that some people put in their Christmas cards, to be annoying and self important. I was opening cards, yesterday and reading some letters, when I was reminded of this conversation. I love those letters. I am not the best on the phone. My lifestyle does not provide a lot of time for the phone or meeting up with my friends on a regular basis. Plus, some of them live out of state. So I find these letters give me a chance to find out of all the fun things that have happened to them this year. It gives my friends and I something to talk about next time we meet. I also enjoy each persons unique writing voice. Receiving such a letter makes me feel that the giver finds me to be a close enough friend that I probably do care about what has transpired in the last 365 days. So, to all of those out there who fill their cards with an end of the year synopsis, keep 'em coming! You are not gloaters! 98% of we recipients get a joy out of reading your years joys and adventures. Bring 'em on.

And to those of you that feel these letters are "annoying and self important", don't read them. That way you aren't annoyed by someone who has mistaken you as someone who cares. Also, don't complain at parties about these things. You run the risk of hurting the feelings people who only have the best of intentions by sending these letters. If you think about complaining openly then you have to ask yourself ,"Who's the real self important one here?"

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

This picture sums up their sibling relationship!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Ten Rules to Live by

The topic for Letters to my Daughters writing project is "Ten Rules to Live by." I have tried to give this a lot of thought. I really have. However, I am not sure what my "rules to live by” would be. So we will stumble through this together.

1. I do believe you have to believe in something higher than yourself. It gives some reassurance to know I am here for something bigger than to eat, drink, breath, work and die. I find meaning in believing in a force bigger and more loving than myself.

2. Strive to be and do better. Everyday should be a new day to try to be a better, more loving, more forgiving individual. Making the world a better place starts with you and your smile.

3. Get outside. When we take the time to get outside and take a walk, garden, or just sit, we have the opportunity to unwind and see what it is all about! When one takes the time to observe the outdoors it takes you out of yourself. It gives us a reason to want to preserve the planet.

4. Take risks, stretch yourself. It can be any kind of risk. Go to a new coffee shop, travel to a place you have always wanted to go. There is such a feeling of freedom and accomplishment when you push yourself to do something new, learn something new, or go some where new!

5. Do not be afraid to fail. We are all afraid to fail. Failure is inevitable. Every great somebody failed many times before they succeeded. The secret is to learn from the failure and head back to the drawing board!

6. Never quit, never give up! See #5 :)

7. There is a reason for everything. I believe this with all my heart. Too many things have happened in my life that back up this theory. The trick is being patient enough to find out what the reason is or was.

8. Travel and learn about other cultures. If you can't afford to hop a flight, go to the library and check out a book. Learn about people and countries other than your own. You will find we are all more alike than we are different.

9. Study the arts. There are so many to choose from, you are bound to find something that tickles your fancy and lets you see the world in a whole new light!

10. Love. Love someone, love something. A pet definitely counts! When you love and take care of something other than yourself, you become less selfish and there is such a freedom in that. It is not easy, it never will be, but it is a necessary and useful journey all the same.

Hey look at me! I was able to come up with some stuff!! I think I just learned a little more about myself, this is always a good thing.

Saturday, December 01, 2007

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year

I love the holidays! One of my favorite things to do during the holidays is to have a nice hot cup of Starbucks Christmas blend and mint M&M's. These are two things you can't get any other time of the year other then December. I love them so much that I usually try to stock up on a few bags of both before they leave the stores for another 11months.
Some times it just the little things, ya know?

Friday, November 30, 2007

It's Official

The Other half has officially killed his knee. Last Saturday ,while playing basketball with his "Old Fogey" league, he did a jump shot and blew out his knee. A 4 Doctors visits, 2 xrays, and one MRI later the verdict is in, his ACL is toast. The other things in his knee are either stretched or blown out too. We have been told that his ACL will have to be reconstructed with either his own tendons or cadaver. My vote is for his own tendons. (Please pray they can use them) They will do some scoping/scraping will they are in there too. We meet with the Surgeon on Monday to get the full rundown of all the fun and to get a date for surgery.
This will be surgery number 2 for The Other Half in less than 12months. SHESH! I told him he's getting expensive and I might just have to trade him in for another model! ;) His sister texted him and said,'You might not think 30 is old, but you knee sure does!' That had me rolling!
On a serious note, please keep us in your thoughts and prayers. Him having surgery always makes me nervous. And I am not looking forward to paying off yet another surgery. Thank God for insurance!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Random Quote

Me: "G, I need you to get ready for bed."

G, is ferociously strumming his sister's pink barbie guitar to some Goo Goo dolls song.

Me: "G, Listen to me! You need to get ready for bed!"

G, still ferociously strumming:" I can't! I NEED to rock and roll!"

This comment comes on the heels of him having broken my mixing bowl while drumming to the sounds of the Foo Fighters. *Sigh*

Me, tiredly:" Ok, five more minutes of rock and roll and then off to bed."

G: "I NEED to rock and roll!!"

Me: "Five minutes or I take the guitar NOW.Which is it?"

G: "Ok, five minutes."

Even rock stars know when not to mess with mom!

Wordless Wednesday

My 3 Boys

Tuesday, November 20, 2007



I can't believe Thanksgiving is almost here. This year has passed very quickly for me and my family. There is so much for me to be thankful for this year. Yes, I may not have the house I thought I would, but I do have a house, a roof over my head. I am thankful for that.

I am thankful for C's school and staff. She is flourishing there, even more than we thought she would. She hates being sick on school days! What?!

I am thankful for G's school and staff. With out those amazing women he would not be communicating even close to as well as he does now. They are miracle workers.

I am thankful for my friend The Psychologist who has helped to guide us with G. Without her expertise and friendship G's delays would have gone undiagnosed for several more years. I can't tell you how many people use to dismiss my concerns of his delayed speech, hyperactivity,and over sensitivity as him "just being a boy." She was the first person close to me that had the training and the confidence to say," I'm concerned too." I am so thankful for that.

I am thankful for The Other Half's new position and for his self growth. I am thankful that he is such a great father, lover of cats, and that he loves my dogs more everyday.

I am thankful for good friends and their love and understanding.

I am thankful for my self growth this year. I hope I never forget it.

I am also thankful for family and that they really do pull through for you when the going gets tough.

Last but not least, I am thankful that this year is almost over! This has been one big fat funky year and I can't wait to finish taking the lessons from it and move onto next year. Clean slate. (Ya ever have just one of those years?)

We will be traveling during this holiday. I love gearing up for it by making a mix cd or two. It kinda gives the travel a sound track, other than the 2 wild children fighting in the back seat and asking why the car is stuck in traffic and why aren't we there yet! I have found that sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do to feel hip and sane while parent or traveling. So my mix cd's usually has something hip, something old, something new, something emo, and something Laurie Berkner or Ralph's world-ish. I can truly say my cd's are eclectic!

To those of you that are traveling, I wish you safe traveling and I hope you keep your sanity.

For those staying near, I wish you a happy holiday as well!

Happy Thanksgiving to you all!!!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Yet another leg of the Journey

I have written a little about my sons sensory processing disorder. Well now he is at an age where they need to find out if some of the things he is dealing with are in the autism spectrum or some other kind of delay. So this weekend I filled out a form that will rule out (or in) "regular" autism. His teachers and therapist have assured me that they don't think he is autistic. But by having me fill out this form it will help them to start to narrow down what is happening with G. In February we start another leg of our journey into special needs by having G tested by a woman who is amazing. She comes to us highly recommended by friends of ours who are colleagues of hers in the field of psychology. She is the go to woman for high functioning autism and a plethora of other things. She has no agenda other than the child's welfare. Sounds good.
We are doing all of these things in hopes of getting G the right programs and help when he starts school next August. By getting him tested early we can get him started on the way to learning in a way that he can understand. These test results will also help his teachers to help him and understand him better.
I have had many friends talk about being uneasy with children being labeled. I understand that. I really do. Unfortunately if you want any help, your child has to be "labeled" so that those around them know how and why to help. I am hopeful that whatever the out come G won't ever feel like "I am a kid with speech delay" or "I am the high functioning autistic kid." Our goal at home, and away, is to for him to be G, our son, who learns the way he learns, and is just as special and cool as anyone else.
This is an interesting leg of our journey.( Not that any twist or turn with G has ever been dull or uninteresting.) I feel that we are getting even closer to having questions answered that have tugged at my heart for the 2years that we have been on this road. I don't want my son to be anything that he is not, but I do want him to be comfortable with who he is. I really feel that these tests are getting us one step closer to getting us all there.

If you would like more information about Sensory Processing Disorder, The SPD Network has a very informative site.

If you would like more information on Autism, Autism Speaks will keep you informed.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Christmas Shopping China Free

A local artisan turned me onto this great site called Etsy. It is a website filled with crafters/artisans from all over the world, but mostly from the US. I have yet to order anything yet because I still have to narrow down my gift ideas. There is so much to choose from! Most,if not all,of the artist take paypal. Etsy tells you how much that "shop" has sold and its approval rating. There is something for everyone ,or anything, on your Christmas list at Etsy. If you like giving one of a kind gifts,without breaking your budget,you are bound to find something on Etsy.

Long Time no See

Well October was one crazy month that did not go according to plan. To make a long story short we were suppose to sign the papers on both homes the first Friday of October and be out the following Tuesday, 4 days later. Something came up for our buyer and so we had to post pone closing every week for the next 3 weeks! Then the buyer went MIA therefore voiding our contract. It turns out she was not pre-qualified like her realtor had told us. The buyer was so frustrated with the people she was working with that she just stopped returning phone calls. It has been a disheartening situation for all of us. The kids are very sad/mad that they won't have their new bedrooms. Because our buyer wanted all of our appliances I went out and bought new appliances, of which are currently in my garage. To top it off my house is emptier than ever and for the month that it has been back on the market we have not had one showing. We have always had,at least, 2 showings a weekend. So, I took it upon myself to list the house on Craigslist, in addition to it being on our Realtors website. I am really struggling to understand Gods rhyme and reason for all of this. We have had our house on the market almost a year. I am really getting disheartened/ depressed about this.

On a good note, The Other Half started his new DM job at the end of October and loves it. His districts numbers are totally in the toilet. These poor guys have not had a manager that cared. And for the last 6months they didn't have a manager at all! Luckily for them the Other Half is a total optimist and loves a good challenge. He has met every single one of his distributors and they were all down in the dumps, but they are hard workers, and are ready to do better, they just want someone to help them get there. Most of these guys already know The Other Half because he trained them to do their job or they've met at work conferences. We both know this has helped him get off to a good start with these guys.

A week after the Other Half officially started his DM job we went with some friends to San Francisco and Napa. I will post more on that later, with photos. It was a great trip!

To sum it up, October was interesting.

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

My House is in Contract!!!

This is a quickie update. I hope to post more in the up coming days. A quick recap of the past 2weeks and why I've been on hiatus. The kids started school! Yippee! We all have been passing the flu around the past 2weeks, booooooo! On Tuesday of last week the other half received a promotion and on Wednesday a woman put an offer on our house?! Crazy great! By Thursday we had finished negotiations and I had the real flu, leaving my sick self, The Other Half, and our realtor to look at houses all this past weekend. We have to be out of our place by the second Tuesday of October, No pressure! It is a challenge to find a house you like when you are well, but let me tell you it is down right no fun when you are sporting a 102 degree fever! But we think we found something we like, out of the 20 we saw this past weekend! I kid you not, 20 homes and I have only found one that seems to have what we need. Just our blessed luck it happens to be Bank owned and in PERFECT condition!!! So we place a bid on Tuesday and we should know by tonight or tomorrow what the bank thinks.
Please say a prayer that we get the right place for the right price. God has really been moving the past two weeks and it is so exciting! I am so excited to see what he is going to come up with when it comes to our lodging!
I hope you all are well and I will blog more soon!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Mini Hiatus

I will be back and blogging in the next couple of days. Life has been a little crazy with all the back to school stuff and getting use to the new schedule.
Best of luck to all of you gearing up for the new school year as well!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

What's in Your Shopping Cart?

It's that time again,back to school shopping! I usually love shopping but this year it was just too much! I think everyone had the same idea as C and I. We went to the uniform shop, busy. We went to Target, busy. As we were almost done at Target I remembered that C needed a "dressy" pair of shoes and my little niece needed a birthday present. Being that my niece is 3 I knew there was a good chance that some of her favorite things had been recalled.Which in turn reminded me that I am trying my darnest to boycott China. I was looking for My Little Ponies and some of her other favorites. None were to be found. They were recalled, I suppose. Then I remembered I had promised her Playdough. When she was over 2 weeks ago she and G had played with it and she loved it! I had told her next time I saw her I would bring her some. So I was off to find the Playdough. We found it. I figured it was there because it wasn't made in China. WRONG! Playdough is made in china?! Yup. Did I give in? Yes. Why? I made a promise and I couldn't find any substitutes. After that my guilt ridden self took C to the Target shoe section. All I could find were made in china shoes! I'm not saying ALL of Targets shoes are made in China, but all of the ones in her size and of the dressy persuasions were! Geez! I was tired from shopping but determined not to give in again, so I asked C if we could go to Once Upon a Child and see if they had loafers or something there. She was fine with that. (Thank God!) I don't have alot of time to shop and run around for shoes, but I figure if the item is second hand I can live guilt free, right?

After are shopping I was exhausted. It was a while before I decided to unload our days purchases. As I was unloading it dawned on me to look and see where everything had come from. This is what I found:

Made in China

  • Body Loofah

  • Foohy Erasers

  • Crayola flash cards

  • Rose Art Washable Markers

  • Elmars Glue

  • Target Bandages

  • 2 Piggy Banks from the dollar bin

  • Starpoint Tinkerbell folder

  • Focus folder

  • Sweet Art folder

  • Maybe it's time,inc folder

  • AND the big heart breaker......High School Musical Folder

Made in USA or else where

  • Cotton Cotton balls, USA

  • PaperMate pens, Mexico

  • PaperMate pencils, USA

  • Bic pens, Mexico

  • Crayola Colored Pencils, Brazil

  • Crayola Crayons, USA

  • Color Sharp highlighters, USA

  • Target Disinfecting Wipes (their answer to Clorox wipes), USA

  • Method aroma spray, USA

  • School Uniforms, USA

  • Norcom construction paper, note books, and loose leaf paper, Mexico

  • Fruit of the Loom tank tops, El Salvador

  • Hanes crew socks, USA

As you have seen from my list, not all of Crayola's products are manufactured in the same country. I found this to be true with several companies. I'm sure there are many more. Target's Circo brand, for instance, had blue knee socks made in China. Circo also had similar socks that were made in Mexico and the United States.

As I have fully realized,from today's adventures, boycotting China is not easy. However it is necessary. The companies of the USA and China have to see that we know what goes into Made in China and we care about what goes into Made in China. I am willing to read labels and do the best I can to stop buying Chinese manufactured products.

Lastly, I have to comment that buying Chinese manufactured products isn't always cheaper. Many of the competing products out there are BOTH made in china. I picked up 2 packages of undershirts. One was Fruit of the Loom the other was some Target off brand. The off brand wasn't in it's rightful place, so I decided to take both packages to the scan station to see how much it was. Turns out the off brand was a dollar more expensive for the same about of undershirts and the off brand was Made in China. I suddenly had two good reasons to go with Fruit of the Loom.

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Another Recall ?!

Mommyzabs from has recently started a new site. While she will still be blogging on, she now has a site devoted to a cause she is passionate about. Her new "baby" is It is a blog devoted to exposing the harsh reality that is the oppressive communist regime of The Peoples Republic of China. She explores and uncovers their harsh treatment of their own people and their lax business practices. It is a site that answers the question "is cheaper really better?".

We, as a people, can no longer think what China does is its own business and it doesn't effect us. We have seen in the last 9months how much China does effect us right down to our home lives. We kicked off the year with the menu foods pet food recalls that spanned from Walmart dog food to Eukenuba. Then we had the Thomas the Train lead paint recall. This week we entered into not only another toy recall but we are also having a toothpaste recall!

If this causes you to ask your self,"What in the heck is going on over there?" Then click on the notchinamade button and go find out!

Monday, August 13, 2007

What do you do?

What do you do when it suddenly dawns on you that a family member has changed and not for the good? What do you do when you don't recognize who they are anymore? What do you do when you are concerned about their health and well being? What do you do when it is the proverbial "damned if you do and damned if you don't." What do you do? These are some of the things that are weighing on me currently and I don't have any answers for any of them.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Things My Kids Love

I don't know about you, but I have a picky eater. C isn't really a picky eater. She'll try most things and then we have her brother.... G has Sensory Processing Disorder, lactose intolerance and is allergic to citrus. We've been told because of his Sensory Disorder that he doesn't like alot of texture when it comes to clothes, food, the world. I don't know how much I believe about the food thing, but I do what I can to get him to eat healthfully. Having him eat healthy can be a challenge. I have to make sure the food he eats doesn't contain any citrus or dairy. (Although he can have cheese.) I am continuously reading labels. One of the things I was bummed to find was that he couldn't eat anymore was applesauce. Almost all brands of applesauce have cornsyrup and citric acid. If they don't have cornsyrup they still have citric acid. G adores applesauce so this label find was a real bummer. A couple of months ago I came across the greatest thing, Mott's Healthy Harvest. They are snack size applesauce by Motts. They come in blueberry, granny smith apple, country berry, summer strawberry, and peach melba. They are all made with all natural fruit. G loves the blueberry the best. He thinks it is pudding because it is a similar color to his sisters pudding cups. :) He also favors the strawberry and the peach. I love it when I find a win-win food item!

A Gymboree Gift Card Contest @ Shakadoo!

The ladies at Shakadoo have a really neat site and a really neat contest. Shakadoo is a site that has "Everything to do with your Shak." They have info on home decorating, kids,home improvements (currently with a tool give away!),gardening, electronics, and a section for if you work from home. To top off how fun the site is,they are having a contest for a $250 Gymboree back to school gift card! All you have to do it sign up by posting under the Gymboree post by posting, then post on your own blog about their post. Then you are officially entered!
Even if you don't want to enter the contest I recommend the site,it really is informative.

Shakadoo is at , and may the luckiest mom win!

Monday, July 30, 2007

Oh my goodness gracious!

First off, our house has been back on the market for a whole week. When we re listed it, our realtor warned us that the housing market it even slower than it was a year ago and that we shouldn't count on having as many showings as we did in the past. We completely understood. Well, this weekend we had 3 showings! Our realtor just called me and said one of the prospective buyers, a single mom with a 3year old daughter, would like to bring her father though our house on Friday to see what he thinks!!! The single mom's realtor told our realtor that she is confident that they want to make an offer. I know it is all preliminary and that the negotiating part can be a pain, but I would REALLY appreciate any prayers on this situation. Our prayer is that our house will have the right buyer. A buyer that is a christian, a family or person who will be a benefit to our court and that our house will be a blessing to them just as it has been to us.
All in all I am excited! Our house and court really would be so perfect for a single mom and her daughter......
Thanks in advance for the prayers!

Monday, July 23, 2007

Coffee, yum!

I am a hopelessly devoted coffee freak. I make no apologize. I love it. Every cup has a different flavor. All beans are not created equal and hence I do discriminate in my choosing of coffee. I will not,unless under duress, buy coffee at a gas station. There has to be no hope of finding another coffee supplier before I will, hesitantly, lay down my 59cents for a cup of the acidic brown water they tell me is coffee. I am a coffee snob.
But there really is a reason for the snobbery. Coffee beans are like grapes that are grown for wine in that the coffee beans take on the nuances of the area they are grown in. The sun, air,water, and soil play a huge roll in how the coffee not only grows, but tastes. I recently read in a magazine that coffee beans grown in Hawaii are "light, delicate, and floral with well balance acidity." The beans in Kenya are "lush with big, bold, fruitiness and complex qualities that mimic a hearty wine." I personally adore Brazilian coffee's. My favorite Brazilian Ipanema by Starbucks, is grown in a volcanic soil. The volcanic soil of Brazil gives the coffees a nutty taste with a light sweetness, and low acidity.

There is also the issue of shade grown and fair trade coffees. Shade grown is actually the traditional method of growing coffee. With coffee production at an all time high, trees have been cut down in order to plant more coffee plants. According to next to tobacco, coffee is the MOST chemical sprayed product consumed by humans. When coffee is shade grown chemicals are not used on the coffee because it is usually being grown organically. The trees that are used to shade the coffee house migratory birds that, among other things, eat bugs that threaten the coffee. Another bonus of shade grown coffee is that the coffee beans mature at a slower rate, which increases the natural sugars of bean and enhances its flavor. Yummy.

Now fair trade coffee is another great way to feel good while drinking your cup o' joe. If you come across the fair trade symbol on your coffee that means that often times is not only organic, but the farmers are paid a livable wage. A "livable wage" is not always the case with non-fair trade coffee. Often coffee farms are akin to sweatshops. The farmer is paid a price for their coffee that is less than the price of production. This makes it hard for the farmers to sustain their farms and their families. When you buy fair trade you are helping to ensure that farmer is getting paid and treated fairly. In exchange for the $1.26 minimum per pound the farmers are paid, Fair trade coffee farmers are also asked to grow their coffee in an earth friendly manor. Fair trade coffee promotes economic independence for the farmer and his family/workers and it helps them to want to farm in a more earth friendly way.
Now if all of this talk about coffee has made you a little parched I have found the yummiest iced coffee recipe.

Thai Iced Coffee
1c ground coffee
1/2 tsp ground cardamom (an Indian spice. it has a cinnamonish taste to it)
8Tbsp low fat sweetened condensed milk

1.Brew 8 c. of water with coffee grounds and cardamom to make double strength coffee. Transfer to large pitcher, and chill. ( I left the coffee grounds out during my transfer and it wasn't easy, but it was worth it.)
2.Pour 1c coffee into tall glasses filled w/ice. stir 1Tbsp sweetened condensed milk into each glass, and serve.

Last but not least here are some brewing tips from Wild Oats Market places own magazine. I found these quit helpful and I hope you will too. Happy Brewing!
Best Brew Tips:
Choose whole beans and grind at home for the freshest taste. (It really doesn't take long to do this and you will notice a difference in the taste of your coffee!)

Store coffee in an airtight container in a cool, dry place.

Do not store beans in the fridge or the freezer as they will absorb smells, which translates int o off-tasting coffee. (been there, done that, yes the freezer does.)

Use whole beans within 2weeks of purchase.

Choose a coffee maker that brews between 195 and 205 degrees Fahrenheit. ( or buy a french press and broil the water yourself. Talk about yummy coffee!)

Grind according to your type of coffee maker.

Use very cold, filtered water fro the purest coffee flavor. (believe it or not it does make a noticeable difference.)

Use about 2Tbsp or ground coffee for each 6 to 8 oz of water, adjusting for taste.

If you would like more coffee info I have listed some sites below:

* is a site dedicated to "ideas for environmentally sustainable living."

* is a site dedicated to coffee education. You can even look at coffee info by region.

*Global Exchange is a website that is "devoted to social, economical, and environmental justice around the world."

* "The worlds leading coffee buying guide"

Friday, July 13, 2007

Enviro propaganda

I am posting a clip of Robert F Kennedy Jr and Glenn Beck. I am posting because I am really irritated with RFK jr's Live Earth speech. If you watch the clip it will show what RFK said and what he called people who don't support his and the Live Earth supporters idea of environmentalism and climate change. It should also be noted that RFK jr is a environmental lawyer. I am also including the definition of fascist,fascism, and treason.

A fascist is someone who upholds fascism.

Fascism is a) A system of government marked by centralization of authority under a dictator, stringent socioeconomic controls, suppression of the opposition through terror and censorship, and typically a policy of belligerent nationalism and racism.
b) A political philosophy or movement based on or advocating such a system of government.
2. Oppressive, dictatorial control.

Treason is a 1. Violation of allegiance toward one's country or sovereign, especially the betrayal of one's country by waging war against it or by consciously and purposely acting to aid its enemies.
2. A betrayal of trust or confidence.

As you will see from the clip, at Live Earth RFK jr called people fascist who don't agree with his, and Al Gores, stance on climate change. He also went so far as to say they are guilty of treason! He is a lawyer! He understands the weight he words hold. He used these words to get the young crowd fired up. I sincerely hope the crowd understands the miss use of his words. Fascism and treason are some heavy words and they hold no meaning when it comes to environmentalism.

Also I should note RFK jr, in his speech at Live Earth, said to write Glenn Beck's advertisers and tell them they won't buy their products because they fund Glenn Beck show. I would normally agree with this kind of protest, except for the fact that one of Glenn Becks sponsors is Rennai tankless water heaters, which are EXTREMLY enviro friendly.Glenn Beck also owns a Rennai. Does RFK jr check his facts or is he hoping we don't check his? I am extremely insulted by his verbal carelessness.

Monday, July 09, 2007

3 Things of More

So, I am having a crappy day today. I have a sinus infection/summer cold, so does G, I had a mini argument with my mom, and a couple of other piddly crappy things happened. I was trying to think of something to get out of my grumpy funk when it dawned on me... I should think about things that I love rather than things that are annoying me currently. (And doesn't it seem that every thing is annoying when you are under the weather?)

So here it goes:

I love daddy's spending time with their children.

I love the smell of flowers after the rain.

I love senior citizens who still hold their spouses hand and look lovingly into each others eyes.

I love unrequested generosity.

I love little children giving each other hugs.

I love the pure joy my dogs seem to have every time I walk through the door.

I love the quiet.

I love the crickets chirping on a summer evening.

I love a good cup of coffee.

I love having a house in a safe neighborhood.

I love siblings helping each other with out being asked.

I love siblings falling asleep snuggling.

I love that all of these thing no matter how big, small, or "insignificant", are all blessings.

What do you love?

Friday, July 06, 2007

God,Fortune Cookies, and Bottle Tops

This is a fun and , hopefully, informative post. My mom believes and has always taught my sisters and I that God can speak threw anything and anyone. For example Moses and the fire bush, the talking donkey in the bible. For the past 4 or 5 years my mom has this thing with fortune cookies. She doesn't use the lottery numbers on the cookie paper and she has never believed the fortune cookies for more than a good laugh. Starting about 5 years ago she noticed the fortune cookies that she would receive seemed to be "speaking" to her. At the time my mom had been mulling over and actively speaking to God on matters of her personal and professional life. She had also started to feel frustrated about these matters. She and I had prayed about some of this and went out for Chinese one afternoon. We finish up and opened our fortune cookies and, I forget what the fortune was, but my mom started crying. She wasn't crying because the cookie told her she would meet the man of her dreams that day or find success, but it had encouraging words. Words that fit her situation to a T. This has continued to happen on and off for the past couple years to the point that we find it humorous. Where am I going with this? Well a friend of ours,Mimi, is moving and she knows how much my son G loves her son's Jeep. Her son does NOT like the Jeep. So she figured this would be a great time to give this to G. My son was so ecstatic!! He looked like he was going to explode with excitement. He ate breakfast,lunch, and dinner in HIS Jeep the whole next day. It was so evident that Mimi's gift meant the world to him. It really impacted him. I was sitting out back, watching G ride around in the Jeep, and sipping my favorite bottled tea, Honest Tea. They always have fun little quotes and sayings on the bottle top. So, I read my bottle top that day and I fell in love with what it said. It was a quote from Albert Price, "What we do for ourselves dies with us. What we do for others and the world remains and is immortal." Wow. I just pondered that. Mimi's gift to G impacted him so positively. He will remember it and treasure it forever, at least in memory. The great people of the Bible and the world have been people that adhere to the quote from Albert Price.
Was it God "speaking" to me through the bottle cap? I think he was encouraging me and reminding me. We all should strive everyday to see God moving, speaking, or sending fortune cookies, you just never know how God is trying to get your attention. :)

Whoa Horsey!

Oh my gosh have I had a whirl wind 2 weeks! I am so glad it's coming to an end! Two weeks ago today we received a call from my other half's doctor letting us know they wanted to preform surgery on his vocal cords ASAP. From what we under stand, the size of the "nod" concerned them and they didn't want to leave it in there any longer. We were very excited! So they scheduled us for a 6:30 am surgery on June 25th. Sadly, Monday the 24th we received a call that my other half's grandfather had passed away. His grandpa was a really nice man. So the other half had surgery, as scheduled, then we traveled out of state Wed for the wake and Thursday for the funeral. It was so nice to see people we hadn't seen in ages, but it was frustrating for my other half because he was instructed not to utter a peep, or laugh, for 10days! Sadly he had to converse with family and friends via a white board and lip murmuring. I have to say I was very proud of him, he didn't utter a peep! We came home from the funeral on Thursday evening, stayed in town until Saturday then it was out of state again to visit the in laws! Whew!
It was a nice trip. The kids became proficient in lip reading and translating, we boated, looked for toads, hot tubed and all around lived it up while trying to keep the other half silent. I think being out of town helped him alot. Instead of staying home waiting for the days to roll bye until he could talk, we were out of town for a most of his silence and having continuous amounts of fun.

The other half went for his check up yesterday and clean bill of health!!!! The doctor was amazed that my other half had managed to stay silent for so long, except for a 4th of July party :) The doctor said the throat looked great and my other half can now start speech therapy and talking 5minutes an hour yesterday, and 10minutes and hour today. He was so ecstatic. The doctor also let us know that when he preformed the surgery he had to do more than he thought he would because of the size of the cyst. And he was concerned how the voice would be, but God is good and he sounds "great". It will be a while until we will see how his singing voice will be, but that too is up to God and the other half has amazed me with believing Gods will will be done either way. I know how important his voice is to him and that expression really touched me.

Because of all the things that went on the past two weeks we had to reschedule putting our house back on the market!!! I am so excited to do this again. I have no idea where God wants us. We are totally clueless to this, we are just praying like crazy. I am praying that God will have a strong Christian family buy our house. A family that will build up the neighborhood and be an asset to our neighbors and the neighborhood. We have such great neighbors that I am really saddened to have to move, but we have really out grown our house and it has served the purpose that it was given to us for. I also hate to close the book on the parts of my kids lives have unfolded in this house. I am so sentimental! But I know God has good things for us if we just pray, listen, and wait. (It's the waiting part that always gets me! Oh my gosh am I a proactive waiter. I really need to work on that! ;) ) I just know that if we keep praying God will bring the right family and the right time, people that will enjoy "our" house and create memories of their own too.

I know I haven't written in a while but I hope everyone had a great and reflective 4th of July!

Friday, June 15, 2007

Made in China?!

The most horrible thing has happened, my Betula Birkenstocks are made in china! I ordered the cutest pair of Betula Birkenstocks the other day. I have been anxiously awaiting their arrival. My feet could not wait to wear these hippy cute things. The finally arrived to day! I excitedly pulled them out of the box, put them on my feet, wore them around the house, and then decided I better check them for damage before I headed outside to show these babies off! Much to my dismay they had a stamp on the inside leather strap "made in china". Not cool! My first thought was I had been taken for a ride and the vendor had given me a pair of knock off's for a not so knocked off price. I decided to search google before I contacted the vendor. I'm glad I did. It turns out my beautiful Betula "Birkenstocks" are LICENSED by Birkenstock and thus they are not made in Germany, like a regular Birk. Further research yielded that the Eurowellness line of shoes by (or licensed by) Birkenstock are also made in China! It is very puzzling to me that a shoe company that is synonymous with hippy foot wear would do something so unhippy, like support a shoe line made in China. One thing I have learned from this ordeal is that when buying online, from the TV, or a catalog I am going to have to check ahead and see where the item is made.

If you would like more info on why not to buy made in China products go to:

P.S. Very trivial update: I have found a small portion of my summer clothes!!! I'm not sure if the little clothing sprites decided to throw me a bone here or what, but I am not complaining. Now if they would just give me back my 2 other containers of clothes....... ;)

Thursday, June 14, 2007

Party fun

I just had to share. My eldest had a birthday in May. I've been debating about whether or not to put some photo's up from party. The party was so much fun though, that I just had to post a few. We hired a nature person to come to the house and educate everyone on nature and the "nuisance" animals that one might find in their neighborhood. It was great. The kids played games, observed a live opossum, tarantula, bats, and a snake. I think the adults had as much fun as the kids, which is always great! I love putting together birthday party's. It seems a birthday is really a time for celebrations. It's a celebration of life, love, and how far one has come. Birthdays are also a great excuse to load up on my 2 favorite foods, Cake and Icecream! In my opinion cake and icecream can be the only food groups. I just love birthdays party's, can you tell?The only problem I find with birthdays is the family is so large that we are up to almost 40 people by just inviting them! It is easy to blow a budget on food alone for those eating machines! :)

P.s I also have some prayer requests. We have has several family members have surgeries related to cancer recently. One member is still in the hospital because they haven't any white blood cells!
We have a friend who has had some complications with a transplant organ and would appreciate prayer for them.
And lastly my other half has, in the last month, found out that he has a vocal nodule that will need to be surgically removed! We've been told that he will have to be silent for 10days following surgery, then on day 11 he can speak for 5minutes every hour, the next day it will be 10minutes every hour, so on and so forth. It will take about a month or so to get back to normal for speech and even longer for singing. Really crazy...
We appreciate all your prayers on behalf of ourselves and others.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Is it just me or.....

Is it just me or is there something weird going on? I can't put my finger on it but it seems there is something not right going on in the world today. Gas prices have been going up over the past 2 to 3 years. Visa is continually running adds on how uncool cash is. Illegal Aliens are constantly being given newer and cooler titles, other than Illegal Alien, by our government leaders. And our president seems to be for illegal aliens, against a wall for our border with Mexico, and against strict searches and crack downs on the boarder, all while conducting a "war on terror".

First up on my blog of confusion is Gasoline. Lately it seems that all I see on TV are these commercials for ethanol. Congress keeps talking about ethanol. Why ethanol? The government has said it would like the US to have 1/4th of its gasoline usage converted to Biofuels, like ethanol, by 2024 (I believe that is the correct date.). I was listening to Glenn Beck several weeks back and he had some experts on. They said it would take a corn field the size of Texas in order for us to convert 1/4 th of the nations fuel to ethanol! They said that one of the problems with ethanol is corn. Corn is the plant that we use to make ethanol. They said we would have a spoilage problem with the corn before it is made into ethanol, therefore making the price of corn go up. That means corn wouldn't be affordable for people who like to eat corn. Instead of eating corn we would be putting it in our automobile tanks. I heard on NPR last winter that ethanol also uses and pollutes more water when going through the process to become ethanol. They said the water is unable to be cleaned and converted back to water. So it seems to me there aren't alot of bonuses to switching to ethanol. My question is why does the government think it is so great? Are they trying to drive up the price of our foods by making gasoline or ethanol more expensive, but giving farmers steady jobs? I really am scratching my head trying to figure out this issue.

The government and the Bush administration also has me scratching my head over their push for an immigration bill. It doesn't seem like their bills are interested in cracking down on anyone. It seems they are trying to make it easier for them to stay and get into the US. I don't understand why we want someone to stay and work in the US who can not follow the rules to get into the US legally. Also, If anyone can enlighten me on why they are marketing illegal aliens to us I would love to read it. They keep coming up with newer and nicer titles for illegals every week. Are they pushing for illegals because they want their votes? Just today Dennis Miller said a poll found that a majority of illegals would vote democrat if allowed to vote. So why is Bush so in favor of illegals being allowed to stay? Is it because he's on his way out and he doesn't care? Is our government,seemingly, in favor of illegals because we are in bed with Mexico and trying hard to become a one world government? Is it because everyone in congress and the white house have illegals working for them and they don't want to lose them? Is it all of the above? The government really has me confused on their push to protect illegals. Mexico and Canada both would throw any American in jail ,and prosecute them extensively, if they were found to be in their countries illegally. So why are we so nice? We are currently funding the Mexican economy, so I understand why Mexico wants us to go soft on their citizens. I just can't figure out why our government wants to go soft on the illegal alien. Why is Bush supportive of us not having a fence on our south boarder and why is he in favor of prosecuting US boarder guards? We have been told over and over again that terrorist and their weapons could easily be smuggled in through our south boarder. Wouldn't it be nice to make it harder for them by building a fence?

Lastly why is Visa trying to make money uncool? The marketing geniuses (I really mean that) at the Visa came up with those great commericals where everyone is swiping or taping their card to pay for their items, then the dork with the cash screws up the flow of things. Yes, I know Visa is a company like any other and they want their product in everyone's hand. Heck, Visa is on my bank card! But here is one thing I know, not to sound all Orwellian, but Visa keeps track of your purchases. Every time you swipe your visa check card at Mejier, at the very least, they know the time you were there, the Meijer you were at, and how much you spent. Say you use your check card for a month, look at your bank statement. Your bank statement will tell which Targets you were at, the day, the cost, ect. It records almost everything. It gives anyone a good view into your life. It tells your travel habits, spending habits, and personal shopping habits. The tag line for Visa is even genius, "It's every where you want to be." That's nice and all, but I don't want people to know everywhere I be. All of the paranoia aside, is cash really that hard to use? It take a little thought to count the coins and the bills, but it's really not that complicated. Maybe we should look at it as a brain exercise, rather than a burden.

Now some of the questions I have posed may seem flippant or rhetorical, but they are truly a quest for answers beyond by first impulsive thought of ," Oh no big brother and one world government!!!!" I'll admit,at times I think the citizens of the world, seem, to busy or too lazy to take notice of what is going on in their communities or governments. Do we really want the government to wrap us in comfy warm bubble wrap with our safety helmets on and sing us a lullaby, all the while assuring us they have our best interests at heart? Should we just give them the steering wheel. We as Americans cannot fall asleep at the wheel, or let big brother tuck us in. These people can't even fix social security! We have to take self responsibility. We have to write our congress person and the president when we are concerned or anger by issues, such as immigration, ethanol, taxes, ect. It is easy to get busy, trust me I know, but the government has email now! Take a second, email your government officials. They are there to do the bidding of their citizens, not their wallets, and not what they personally think. They must never forget that they are there to work for us. Period.

Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Where O Where Have My Summer Clothes Gone?

I am in an interesting predicament, my summer clothes have disappeared! I am not kidding. I can not find them anywhere. We are trying to sell our house, so I stored some things at my sisters house. She and I dug for an hour or so in her basement, no luck. I have storage building in my backyard, nope not there. I remember putting them in HUGE Tupperware containers at the end of last summer. That's all I can remember. It is so strange, it's like the clothing gremlins have come and hijacked the clothes and are doing who knows what with them now. So in the mean time I've been buying clothes sparingly. I know the moment I go out and spend a ton of cash on new clothes my "old" clothes will magically appear. This has got to be some kind of joke. Who loses 2 big Tupperware things full of clothes? You know a joke like this is right up my sisters alley......Wish me luck on finding my clothes. These things have got to be some where....right?

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

John Mayer Drives me Nuts!

John Mayer was recently honored by Time Magazine as being an influential person. I am not sure how this happened. I don't have any clue why songs like "Your Body is a Wonderland", "Daughters", and "Waiting on the World to Change" would put him in the running for such an honor. The author of the Time piece gives little basis for Mayer's honor other than his songs will "be your friends for life." What?! If an entertainer is honored for an award, such as Times Most Influential, shouldn't they do something more significant other than write odes to women's bodies, and anthems for apathy? I will admit, I enjoyed his first album, but it doesn't mean he is influential. He's not, as song writers go, a tour de force. Politically he isn't either.I haven't heard of him using his celebrity for helping anyone but the Democratic party. Lord knows the Dems need another celeb supporting their causes! He doesn't go to visit orphans or raise money for children who have facial deformities, as his girlfriend Jessica Simpson does. He doesn't speak of or support any charities that I know of. So why Time Magazine did you put him in your 100?

I know this post may come off a bit snarky. I apologize if it did. I am simply frustrated with the media continuing to put people on a pedestal that haven't really helped society in anyway.

Thursday, May 03, 2007

The "Truth" about Al Gore

Al Gore Caught Warming Globe To Increase Box Office Profits

The Onion

Al Gore Caught Warming Globe To Increase Box Office Profits

Finally some news about Al Gore that doesn't make me roll my eyes. When I read this I actually roled with laughter. Only the Onion could make Al Gore funny.
I hope you enjoy!

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Catchin' up

Wow, it has been almost 3months since my last "real" post. Man, time flies when things are going crazy. Lets see where to being.....The last weekend of January my Dad married my now Step mom. She's great. I now have 4step sister in addition to my own 3 sisters. My Dad now has 7girls! Her girls are great. Both families love getting together. We are all so similar that it is a real blast. My step mom is a great cook, so my Dad now has a gut! He's always been so thin. He doesn't seem to mind and Step mom loves that he appreciates her cooking so much!
Most of February and March had my fam sick with the stomach flu, the real flu, strep throat, and sinus infections! It was the crappiest month ever! We are all on the mend now and enjoying the weather, thank God. To add to February's crap factor my Step mom found out she has lymphoma, a type of cancer. She received her diagnosis about 2 weeks, or less, after she and my dad were married. She called me personally to tell me, which I thought was very thoughtful. She said from the day of the biopsy on God has given her a peace about the cancer. She believes God is going to use her sickness to bring my Dad closer to God. I think she is right. For instance, the Sunday following the diagnosis my Dad wanted to go to church with her. He WANTED to go! The church she and I go to is progressive, by dad was raised southern Baptist, that is the reason he usually states for not wanting to go to church with her. Well he goes to church and the second song they sing is and old gospel song, sang like he grew up hearing it, and my dad had been singing it to himself ALOT in the days following Stepmom's diagnosis. He was floored. He turned to Stepmom, with tears in his eyes, and told her about the songs significance to him. She was very touched. Having said that, he has only been to church 2 other times in the past 2 and half months. That may not sound like a lot, but that is more than he has been to church in the past 10+ years, so I am very happy!
My Stepmom had further work done in March and it turns out that they believe she has very little of the cancer in her body. We were all happy to hear about that,but she does have to receive treatment. She started radiation therapy about 2weeks ago. It has left her tired. I'm not sure how often she will receive radiation or for how long. She and my Dad are very quiet on all the details. So I just pray for her and figure they will let me known stuff when they feel comfortable. Any prayers any of you would like to offer would be greatly appreciated.

On a lighter note my sisters and I went on a road trip to Philly last weekend. Man was it crazy. I sat the fence for a month or two before deciding ,a week before our departing date, that I would in fact be going. My sisters were really cool about my hesitations, but they were also really great at persuading me to go . Now, before I go any further I will name my sisters, for clarification purposes. I will not be using my sisters real names to "protect the innocent or not so innocent" :) My middle sis,will be Middlesis,and my youngest sis will be Babysis.(I'm a genius, I know)
The car ride was slated to begin at 7am last Friday. My sisters and I are notoriously NOT morning people. Notorious. So I figured we would miss the slot, and we did. Middle sis and myself promptly arrived a Babysis's house at 7:30am. We were on the road and hitting a Starbucks by 8am only to realize we were going the wrong way, we hit traffic, tried to take a "short cut" got lost, found our way back to Babysis's house to use the bathroom, and start out on the road again!! This would frustrate some, but these crazy things are to be expected by my sisters and I so we just laughed it off and off we went!
There is nothing like a 9 hour car ride to bring siblings closer and to find out how different you really are. We all three have such different musical taste. Middlesis loves classic country, some new country, R&B, and classic hippy music. Babysis likes classic country, Japanese music, 80's music, and some music that I have never heard of. Then there is me. I like some classic country, love the 80's, 90's, British rock, hippy rock, new and emerging artist, things like that. Out of fairness to each other we started a cd system in the car. Babysis could put in the first CD, since it was her birthday road trip, then me, then Middlesis. It worked out well. I think we all tolerated each others taste on the way to Philly. On the way home Sirius was king.
Baby sis made all the arrangements for the trip, being as it was her long time dream. We had a great hotel in the center of town. We could walk or bus to anything. There was a Starbucks on every corner.(Shocker, I know) So we were set. We visited Ben Franklin's grave, the Liberty bell, the halls were the Declaration was signed, the house that Tomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration in. We visited China town and had lunch there. China Town was by far the best! It is a close nit community. They were very friendly. There were a lot of families walking around. It was one of the few places that we felt safe. It is also one of the few place that we didn't observe any homeless people or people asking for change. After China town my sisters and I meet up with a couple of Babysis's friends that live near Philly. Everyone went to see the Mutter Museum of Medical oddities. YUCK! Mutter is part of the PennState medical school and its main purpose is education and research. Middle sis is a nurse so she was looking forward to the Mutter so she could learn some new things. Babysis had just always wanted to go, and her friends were of the same mind. Not me , no way! I sat in a nice comfy chair in the lobby away from all of it. When they came out of the museum they all said it was great, but I wouldn't have been able to handle it. I agree and I haven't any regrets.
After we arrived home on Sunday babysis did some further research on Philly. It seems it has the 3rd largest murder rate in the country! They had 7murders in our area on Saturday Night, thus explaining why Middle and Baby kept being woken by sirens! We had a good laugh and all agreed that it was a blessing that 3people went, instead of 2. We also agreed that it had been a great idea to say in after dark, even thought the streets were alive with all types of people and it had been so tempting to go out at night.
The trip was invaluable on so many levels. I learned so much about my sisters. So much of their hurts, their stubbornness, what I need to pray for when it comes to them....That part was kind of sad actually. I wish there lives were in such a state that I would just have to thank God for them. But they are not. My sisters have a lot of pain stored up from our childhoods and our parents divorce and post divorce. In a way it is a gift to be able to know these things that I have suspected for so long. I think the trip, at least for Babysis and I, was a time of understanding each other better and getting closer. I hope Middle sis feels the same.
So there you have it the condensed version of my life during my 3month hiatus. Hopefully I will be able to write more often. I am also hoping to bring more to the blog than just my life. We'll see how that goes. :)

Friday, April 13, 2007

Updates from my crazy life coming soon!

I haven't had alot of time to myself for a while. I hope to update this blog this weekend.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Busy, Busy, Busy

Wow, so much has happened since I last blogged. Man was January a busy month! My guest's from the UK arrived. We had a great time. This was their first trip to the states. So we showed them around. Everything was new to them, from the size and look of our schools, to shopping malls, to our American size food portions. We had fun figuring out the differences in language. They say boot, we say trunk. We say pants, to them that means underwear! We had tea and biscuits every day,Yummy! We were all sad to have them leave. It was a wonderful week. No more than 6 days later my other half was in the UK for work and to play a gig. He was excited because none other than Mr. Ewan McGregor was to be at the gig. My other half was able meet him, and reported that he is really great looking in person, and cool! Ewan and his two friends stayed for the first set and then asked for the bands information! They said they have movie rap parties in New York and they are always looking for new bands! Even if nothing comes of it, it is still freakin' cool and flattering.
We have also taken our house off the market for a month. Ugh. I hate selling a house. We're going to put it back on in March in hope that the spring plants will add curb appeal. For some reason snow and rain just don't move a house!
This week has finally been a time of slowing down. It feels like I can finally breath. It seems like since Thanksgiving it has been run, run, plan, plan, go, go, go! By this point it almost feels weird not to have much on the calendar.
I do have one thing on the calendar. I'm celebrating my birthday with my sisters this weekend!! I am so excited. My Brittany argument sister is starting to come around. She is talking to my mom just about everyday! In the past our mom has been lucky to talk with her once every two months! She and my mom have been discussing politics, religion, relationships, heavy stuff! It is so exciting. My other sister has a great hubby, she is quirky,and a lot of fun. We are kicking off the evening by going out to eat with our mom, then heading back to quirky sisters house for a night of our all time favorite movies, dance revolution, home videos, and junk food!! It's going to be a real deal slumber party! It is so nice that, not only am I excited, but both of my sisters are too!!

Speaking of politics, I have to start reading up. The media is really pushing Obama. I'm just afraid they are going to make him the next Howard Dean. In the 2004 election they were pushing Dean early on. The moment he announced he was running they were touting him as the next president, then one day the just turned on him like a pack of rabid wolves! I have a feeling they're going to do that to Obama in an effort to push Hilary. (Don't even get me started on her. I would love a woman to run for president, just not her. She has always struck me as very smart, but cold, unloving, methodical, and um, I don't know, communist. ) I hope none of this happens, but I just have this feeling it will. Having said all of that, I have to read up on all the who, what , where's, and whys. I like to be an informed voter. The problem, it seems, is that at this point all of the "candidates" are saying the same thing. They are trying to play it safe. I wish we could get rid of the "squeaky clean" candidate image and just get real! Is someone is willing to come forward and be themselves, warts and all? Please, candidates, if you will get real I'll be willing to listen. Because what you are can't be worse than what I think you are. Let's be honest, the title Politician doesn't conjure up the image of a boy or girl scout! So please just get real, and I will listen!

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Colbert the king of tv!

After whining about not having anything good to watch the other night, I was finally blessed with a great tv night. On Thursday I was still sick, so this lead to more sitting on my butt watching tv. As luck would have it, it was Thursday, night of may options! There was Ugly Betty, Grey's, Scrubs (it was the night of their musical), and Colbert with O'Reilly! The two I was most excited about were Scrubs and Colbert/O'Reilly. The Scrubs musical was cute. Lots of funny parts, just like Scrubs. JD and Turks hetero guy love song was cute. Colbert was on the O'Reilly factor earlier in the evening. Colbert was funny. He was great. O'Reilly looked uncomfortable. I'm not sure why he was uncomfortable, Colbert wasn't rude or out of line. Then later that night O'Reilly was in the hot seat over on The Colbert Report . Once again, O'Reilly just didn't seem comfortable. Both Colbert/O'Reilly shows fell flat of the hype and my expectations, but they weren't bad. I think they could have been better had O'Reilly just been more comfortable. Maybe he's just not comfortable being asked questions or in a parody situation. Who knows. Colbert was heard to say, after his show was over, that O'Reilly seems like a nice guy.
For your viewing pleasure I have included both segments. Enjoy!

Colbert on The Factor

O'Reilly on the Report

FYI, Colbert really did steal what he said he stole, Fox news confirmed it.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Whoa is me!

Oh my goodness do I have a cold! Ugh! I felt this cold coming on about 4 days ago. I have been downing regular tea, red tea, green tea, herbs, airborne, you name it, in hopes of warding this baby off. To no avail. I am sick and I don't have the time to be sick. (Do we ever?) It is t-minus 3days until I have house guests! I have soooooo much to do to get ready, very few helpers and not much energy. To top it off I have only crappy tv to watch in the mean time. I know, whine, whine, whine. But seriously, I have one evening to rest, which is tonight, and there is nothing on! Oh but you say,'Watch American Idol!' No thanks. I really think it is the most over rated show on tv. I hate it when they show the people who can't sing. Not only do I not want to hear them "sing", but I hate hearing them get torn down. I hate that the whole next day ALL the radio stations laugh and poke fun at the people who can't sing. I just don't get making fun of people or even laughing at someones attempt at their dream. I just can't make any sense of American Idol. But I'm too sick to bore people with the rest. So what am I watching tonight? Soap net. Oh yes, I said it, SoapNet. This is how desperate I am for some "decent" tv.

On another note, can you believe we are just about in the middle of January?! Is it me, or as you get older does time roll bye more quickly? Is it that we are more busy? Because I have to tell you I was a fairly active kid, and time seemed to take FOREVER to tick bye. Now it just flits. In some ways that's great because you get back around to birthdays more quickly. Now I have to prefece; I hate getting older. I always have. But I love my birthday, I love other peoples birthdays. Just like Christmas, how fun is it to go shopping for the right gift?! How yummy is cake?! Cake and Icecream are the best food group on the whole pyrimid. The very best. I am an equal oppurtunity cake eater. The more cake the better, with a nice side of icecream, pure heaven!

Totally on to another topic.(ADD much?!) I was at the library and discovered a new periodical. It's a Canadian magazine called Macleans. A friend of mine informed me that it was a kind of Time or Newsweek for Canada. They had a great article titled Why are we dressing our daughters like skanks? Great, catchy title huh? With a title like that I just had to read it and it was great! It talks about how companies and parents are working together to degrade the next generations innocence. I checked online and Macleans has an excerpt entitled Why are we dressing our daughters like this? Here is the link:
The article really is quite good. It certainly has affected who I purchase from and what I purchase. I hope you find it as informative and interesting.
Have a good week!

Monday, January 15, 2007

Thinking Happy Thoughts

I have been trying to think happy thoughts the past couple of days. I have also been trying to make sense of Noah's passing and wrestling with my own feelings on it. I don't think, at this point, I would have had the faith and peace that Noah's parents had in order to do what they they did. I guess that's why I wasn't given Noah. Many parts of his story and his parents words spoke to me. Here is my little story and if you stick with me you will see how they tie together.
My mom and her best friend were talking the other day about my sister. (The one I had the Brittany argument with.) They were talking about their concerns and what not. My mom said something about my sister being an alcoholic. My mom's best friends says,'We're not going to use that word anymore. I refuse to label our girl. We are just going to start calling her a child of God, and anytime we want to use the A word ,we will just call her a child of God.' My mom recounted this little story to me on the same day that I read on Noah's Blog about his mom being glad that Noah didn't have a diagnosis and therefore no label could be put on him and it hit me.... When we or others are given a label it confirms or reaffirms something about us. If it's negative then we buy into it and can let that thing control us. We give the negative thing a foot hold in our lives ,or the lives of others, and therefore it has power. I have been given the story of God talking to Abraham lately. I was trying to piece together what it all meant. My sis, dad, Noah, no labels and Abraham. I think I might be getting it. When God told Abraham he would have descendants as numerous as the stars and that he would have a son; Abraham laughed at God and said 'I am an old man and Sarah is an old woman. We can not have a child at this age.' He labeled himself and Sarah. When we label that limits what we allow God to do. Maybe if he would have just fallen down and thanked God and accepted it as fact, MAYBE he and Sarah would have had their son sooner. What I am getting at is I am not longer going to label Dad or Sis. I'm not going to label them out loud or in my head. When I start to label them I'm just going to say child of God and thank the almighty for what he IS doing and will do in their lives.

Now on to less complicated happy thoughts that don't require as much thought. :)
I LOVE mint Christmas M&M's. I ran across a hidden half pound of them. I had hidden them over the holidays. I am relishing them. Ahhhh, it's the little things.....
I am enjoying a wonderful book call "Nonviolence: 25 lessons from a dangerous idea". I'll be giving updates on it as I get more into it. At this point , regardless of your stance, I recommend it. It has a lot of history in it.
I am so happy that my cat is getting de-clawed at the end of this month!!!! My couch is happy too. I have some great friends coming into town in a few days and it will be so nice to catch up with them.
I just received a few new cookbooks in an attempt to over come my culinary rut. I am looking forward to using them. I love to cook. I come from a family of great cooks and have been feeling inferior lately. I'm hoping these books will help. It's Rachel Ray, how can it not?!
These are my happy things for the moment. They may not be glamorous, but they are helping to keep me a little sunnier.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

This is an update of my previous post

Sweet Noah passed away on the same day that he was taken off of life support. I consider it God's grace and mercy that he passed so quickly. Please pray for his family during this time.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

My heart is so heavy

There are so many things that I've wanted to blog about, but right now they all seem frivoulous. There is a little boy named Noah Steven. You can reach his blog via mine, by looking at my links to the right. The short story about Noah is that he was born in August of 2006 and shortly after went into the ICU. The Doc's aren't sure what is wrong with Noah. He is on some type of life support and his parents have been praying ferverntly for a miracle. After lots of prayerful consideration they are taking him off of life support on friday. It's complicated and ,I can't even say I completely understand it, but they are putting him as a sacrafic before God and asking for a straight up miracle. My heart is soooo very heavy for them, their family, and for their son. This, I'm sure, wasn't and easy decision. I am asking anyone that reads my blog to go to Noah's. Read about Noah and his family. Most of please pray for them all. Please pray as God leads you.

Friday, January 05, 2007

Hangin' with me a fun way to spend your day?

Man am I tired today! I had to be up at 6:30 am in order to get my soon to be stepsister to the dentist to have her wisdom teeth taken out. Yikes! I thought she would be tired, but turns out she was in good spirits, but wanted to hang with me instead of going home to an empty house. It was a nice experience. We chatted and watched movies. It was nice getting to know my step sis better. She's a good "kid". She and I also decided to be shopping buddies next time one of us needs to do some power shopping:)Hanging with my stepsis aside, this week has been a real zinger. I am finding that I may not be so much of a stress eater as a stress drinker. Starbucks. Hazelnut latte. Mocha. Vanilla latte. mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. yummmmmmmmmmmmm. The good thing about Starbucks being a "stress buster" is that there is not one for about 5miles of my house and it isn't on my route to many places. So my stress buster is still in moderation. My stressful week has only equaled 2 lattes. Where as if I was an at home stress eater this could spell trouble. Thank you Starbucks for your crack laden drinks and the fact that your not currently convenient for me to get to!
I am going to log off now. Scrubs is do on soon. They brought it back, finally. Such a smartly written wacky comedy. Enjoy your evenings.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Calendars, Couches, and Cats, Oh My!

Have you ever looked at the calendar and your head starts spinning? I look at the calendar for January and it is already filled up with dates and possible dates. It feels like the month is over before it begins! I'm not complaining. I love being busy and having people to see. It is just crazy the over whelming feeling a full calendar can bring.
I am excited about 2007. I can't really say why; it just feels like it is going to be a good year. I felt the same about 2006, and I can't say I was disappointed. In many ways 2006 was the best year I've had in a long time. I just seemed to fly by too quickly.
I have to say I am enjoying the AWESOME weather we are enjoying presently. I am an active and outdoorsy type so the mild winter has been welcome. Don't get me wrong I would love to see a light dusting of snow, but it is so nice just to pick up and take my dogs on a walk and not have to worry about Eskimoing up just to do it.
We have 3 Dogs and 2 cats. This may sound like trouble, but it is a fine arrangement. All of our boys get along famously. They all get along so well in fact, that 4 out of the 5 have decided to conspire against my new sofa! My oldest dog, who has a bed of his own, has decided he needs to be sleeping on said sofa. The two midgets have decided that they shouldn't sleep on the sofa, but on the pillows, and there are A LOT of those. There is the one cat ,who believes the couch is his own personal scratching post!! I have mostly remedied the dogs with yelling, clapping, and throwing of other throw pillows at them. ( it seems to be working) The cat on the other hand is undeterred and has taken to scratching at night when mommy can't see! SO mommy is calling the vet tomorrow to make a de-clawing appointment. We'll see who the winner is now buddy!

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Years!!!
I usually like to have a quiet new years eve, but this year I was special, we were in demand for various parties. Imagine our surprise, No date with Blockbuster?! I was actually looking forward to watching a few flicks, but alas I was needed. We were invited, by a couple we adore, to our favorite wine bar to kick off the new years eve. Then there was the invite to a huge blow out party. We also were invited to two smaller parties held by some friends and neighbors of ours, but we had to decline all offers and go with numero uno, My sister in law. She was top pick for many reason. Reason number one: She asked first. Reason number two: she had a babysitter! All in all we're still reveling in the fact that we had so many offer. It was a nice ego boost :) We had a great time , but man am I beat today!
Since I felt like such a lazy butt today, I decided to catch up on my music and revive some of my old loves. OH MY GOSH! I had forgotten how much I loved Elvis Costello,Morrisey, the Smiths, the Cure, Pearl Jam....Man these bands and people took me back! So many memories...So I spent the day cleaning , a little, and reminiscing to myself.
As I was eating a healthy snack of Cheetos and sitting on my butt listening to music I started to wonder; Is everyone somewhat "stuck" in a certain period of their life? For most of us is it high school or college? It seems those are the two times in our lives when we understand how wide open the future and our potential really is. We are also realizing how little responsibility we are shouldering at that time and juncture. Everything seems attainable and easier at those points in life. These are just the things the Cheetos and I were contemplating...
I do not make New Years resolutions, but I do embrace every year that comes and hope for things. I hope 2007 is filled with more hope,continued purpose, new surprises, new dreams, and fun. For the world, I hope we all have a greater sense of purpose and a drive to do what is right and just. I hope we all find a greater capacity to love one another this year.
May we ALL enjoy greater Peace, Love, and Fellowship in 2007, Have a wonderful year!