Saturday, November 29, 2008

While reading one of my favorite blogs, I came across this story. I thought it was cute!

THE GOOD NAPKINS...ahhhhh...the joys of having girls...

My mother taught me to read when I was four years old (her first mistake)....

One day, I was in the bathroom and noticed one of the cabinet doors was ajar. I read the box in the cabinet. I then asked my mother why she was keeping 'napkins' in the bathroom. Didn't they belong in the kitchen?

Not wanting to burden me with unnecessary facts, she told me that those were for "special occasions" (her second mistake)...

Now, fast forward a few months....It's Thanksgiving Day, and my folks are leaving to pick up my uncle and his wife for dinner. Mom had assignments for all of us while they were gone. Mine was to set the table.

When they returned, my uncle came in first and immediately burst into laughter.

Next, in came his wife who gasped, then began giggling.

Next, in came my father, who roared with laughter.

Then in came Mom, who almost died of embarrassment when she saw each place setting on the table with a "special occasion" napkin at each plate, with the fork carefully arranged on top. I had even tucked the little tail in so they didn't hang off the edge!!

My mother asked me why I used these and, of course, my response sent the other adults into further fits of laughter.

"But, Mom, you SAID they were for special occasions!!!" Isn't it easier to just tell the truth and be careful who you ask to set the table for you!

Friday, November 28, 2008

New Thanksgiving Tradition

I had heard that if you want to burn off your Thanksgiving meal, you would have to go out and run a marathon. Well, who wants to do that! So instead of going outside running, one of the kids put on the music and began to dance. Next thing we know, we are having a dance party! With a house full of teens and young adults, I suppose this would almost be inevitable! We spent a good hour selecting our favorite dance songs off the internet, old and new! Play the video below to check out the fun times!

The rest of the day was the wonderful traditional family get together time! We are truly thankful for such treasured memories!

Ev was the first one at the table! She was ready to eat since she is eating for two! Baby will be here in 6 weeks!!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


For just about 8 months now I have been vegetarian. I began this as an experiment to see how my health and my weight would be affected. So far I haven't really noticed much change. I have been concentrating on making sure that I take in enough protein and iron, so basically I feel the same. I didn't test my blood composition before I started, so maybe that has changed; less cholesterol, etc. So, I 'm not sure how long this experiment will last.
This marks my first Thanksgiving without eating turkey. I know it will be hard not to eat just a little, but I will give it a try! I am cooking one for the family, so they won't go without!

When I see photos of these turkeys, it reminds me that turkeys are created to be eaten. Though I understand some of you might not agree with me, I speak from a voice of experience. For 20 years we raised turkeys from day old hatchlings to Thanksgiving Day dinner. This was quite an endeavor. We would order 15 - 20 downy soft little chicks and raise them up for our food. The turkeys were not the smartest bird on the farm, let me tell you! The stories that you have heard about turkeys drowning in the rain are all true! I never really had one drown, but they do tilt their heads up towards the sky allowing the water to pour down their throats when the rain starts. It is the weirdest thing! After spending umpteen dollars on feed, they were ready to butcher. Some years I fed them better than others and they would get too big too fast. They would be ready to butcher in October! We would still have to feed them for another month. Our recorded largerst butchered out, cleaned, ready for the oven turkey was 36 lbs! No lie!! We had to cut it in half length-wise to put it in our little oven. Many times we would let several of them stay "on the hoof" so to speak, keeping them alive until Christmas dinner or New Year's. Once or twice we got lazy and didn't get around to butchering them in a timely fashion and by March or April they would be having leg and feet problems. We had one go blind once. It was hard to butcher her, but we didn't want to let the meat go to waste when she got to be 10 months old or so. We had one that we called "tweak beak" because it had a deformed upper beak that went sideways instead of straight forward over the lower beak. He had a hard time eating, so he didn't hang around until November; we ate him early!
Ok, that's enough turkey stories. I have more, but you get the idea! I encourage all of you to have a wonderful Thanksgiving Day, turkey or none!
Give thanks with a grateful heart!!!

Sunday, November 23, 2008


A few things that make my heart glad.

A big family to love

My mom

My dad

Daughters to spend time with in the kitchen

Sons who love

Grandbabies to kiss

Fun in the ocean

And this............

Love that lasts

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Autumn Sun

Slowly, slowly the autumn sun fades as the days become shorter and the nights become cooler.

The evening sun sinks rapidly into the depths of a misty fog as the dampness hangs thick in the air.

Winter is near, eager to step into its rightful place on the heels of fall.

I'm not ready.

Monday, November 17, 2008

November in Humboldt County

Unbelievable. Sunshine and temperatures in the 70's. I don't know that I have ever seen such fantastic weather in the middle of November here in the Pacific Northwest.
We spent the entire day down at the beach with a picnic lunch and the horses in tow.

Rex and Tilly were able to romp and play together. They both love the ocean, too!

Wesmonger really likes the camera.

Here is my heart. These are the ones that I love and care for.

The day was so exquisite.

The water was even tolerable for Arbiter to go in for a quick dip!

These are definitely days to remember and treasure.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

More than a 1/2 Century

This marks yet another milestone for me. I have finished an entire 1/2 century on this planet with hopefully another 1/2 to complete. I am blessed to share this special occasion with two very special ladies. Both of my beautiful DIL's share in the same birthday month as do I. Our honeys treated us to a wonderful celebration of our b-days this past weekend. We shared in blowing out the candles on the cake. Shortly after we indulged ourselves in this towering mass of chocolate cake, we had an earthquake. When we came back into the room the cake had slid off onto its side and fallen over. The quake wasn't that big, but we thought it was rather amusing!

The guys were so kind to honor us and make us feel extra special. N even gave us a solo on the toy trumpet!

Since the theme of our celebration was "Viva Mexico!" our friends M & TJ brought over this strange looking fruit. Most of us had no idea what it was as we cut it open and examined the contents. Yes, we should have realized that it was a papaya.

TJ does her best to look like she knows what she is doing with the exotic fruit. We had all kinds of candles, guacamole, chips, fajitas, and even some Mariachi music playing on the CD player. We had lots of fun. Thank you friends and family for making us feel so special.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Veteran's Day

This post may be a little late, but I cannot let the week go by without mentioning my gratefulness to all of those who have served in our military in order to make our great nation the best place in the world to live. Without these military heroes our country would not have freedoms like voting in a presidential election like we did last week or the freedom to pick and choose which media publication we would like to read to get our news. So many things that we take for granted. I would just like to say thank you, vets. Your sacrifice has not been in vain.

While touring the USS Midway last week, we came upon this lonely table in a corner 0f the mess hall. It seems that every ship had a special POW table set up in their dining room to remind them of the soldiers who remain imprisoned or missing in action. The sight gave each of us great pause in considering the price that some paid for our freedom.

Land of the free,
land that I love.
We are not perfect, but we are strong,
We are not sovereign, but we are united.
We are one, we are many,
We are Americans
And for this I am grateful,
I will never be ashamed.

Who are you?

Can you guess who they are?

Contestant #1

Contestant #2


Contestant #4

Contestant #5

The winner will receive nothing but self-bragging rights!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Fun in San Diego

Seth took his first plane ride! We flew into SLC, Utah and then on down to San Diego.

This is our posh hotel room. We felt really special staying at such a nice place.

Up on the second floor there was a sandy beach area and these beautiful cabanas where you could relax and read. I absolutely love purple, so I especially enjoyed the decor.

This lovely sight was awaiting us as we entered the room. (for a mere $58!) We decided to leave it there!

We spent one afternoon touring the USS Midway Museum that is dry docked permanently in the San Diego Harbor. We wore ear phones attached to a receiver that explained all the history and details of the ship as we walked around. Seth even got to go up into the bridge area and be captain.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Time for a Rest

With all the events that have consumed my attention in the last few weeks, I was ready for some rest. I am in San Diego at this moment, sitting in a posh hotel while Gus attends a conference. While this is more work related for him, it is very rest related for me. I am so worn out this week! The decor feels more like an Ikea than a hotel! This hotel is completely geared towards the age group that we are studying this week in my lifespan class. There are mirrors everywhere, colorful fabrics, pillows, and textures adorning the windows and furniture, neon lighting, glass block, a sandy beach on the second floor and a bar in nearly every community space! The night we checked in they were having the Madonna after-concert party in the lobby! So I am getting submerged in the hedonistic, energetic type of behavior that seems to permeate this age group. So far we have visited SeaPort Village, Horton Plaza, Macy's (twice), and the Harbor. I haven't really gotten any rest! Tonight we go on a dinner cruise on a boat on the bay. Now that will be nice. I will post some photos when I can. It is fun, but a little odd. I laugh to think that in another decade or so these same young-uns will want all of those mirrors gone! No need to be reminded of those things that would change our self image! At lunch today, Gus said one of his conference-mates fell into the pool at lunch time, clothes and all. They have a very tiny pool area on the 2nd floor. The patio measures about 30 X 40 with a little pool in the middle. Well, it seems that one of the guys was carrying his plate over to his table and just spaced out the fact that there was a pool in the middle of the patio! I'm sure he was embarrassed, but I bet it was funny! Poor guy! So, all in all, we are enjoying everything. God is good to give times of rest when we need it the most.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Today and Forever

Sad news. Josh has been declared brain dead. Oh how much this pains my heart just to write these words. For with these words the weight of many hearts bends in grief, tears running endlessly in rivers of sorrow. Father God.
The teens gathered around in my living room today as they cried and shared and laughed. As my friend Tammie put it so well today, there is a fine line between sorrow and laughter. Each had their own grief to share. It was good. It was good to see them feel. To see them share. To see them support one another through a tough day. One brought pizza. Another brought flowers. One brought coffees. All brought their hearts.
Josh suffered from a very fast moving infection in his ear and sinuses. This quickly moved into his brain stem where it literally devoured the delicate fibers and tissues. He would not recover. Less than 24 hours after entering the ER, he was gone.
We will miss this gentle boy. I think so many of us feel so much grief and sorrow because Josh was such an open, loving social young man. He was always willing to share himself with others, never afraid to hold back. He will be terribly missed by many many young friends.
Please continue to pray for Bill, Kelly and their beautiful children. Pray for little Jordan. She is so heartbroken. She and Josh were very close and this will be a most difficult time for her.
Today I hugged my children.... alot. I heard Jo tell her brother Wes as she went to bed that she loved him. Tenderness and care so freely given.

Great is thy faithfulness
Oh God my father
there is no shadow of turning from thee
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Great is thy faithfulness
Lord unto me.

Sunday, November 02, 2008


Today has been difficult. Our dear friends have an 18 yr. old son who tonight is fighting for his life in a hospital in San Francisco. It seems he has had an ear and sinus infection for over a week and it crept up into his brain stem. He lost his ability to breathe on his own, had to be put on a ventilator and was put into a medically induced coma. We shared some special prayer time around his bedside at the hospital with his family and a few other friends from church. Josh comes from a huge family of 9 brothers and sisters. It was heart wrenching to watch each of them as they snuggled up and pressed against the side of the bed to whisper their love into his ear, their tears spilling onto the sheets. It felt so helpless to just stand there. But at the same time it felt good to be able to wrap my arms around the kids when they needed a place to bury their falling tears. What does one say in such times? Prayers. Hugs. Just a crying out to God for a miracle. Prayers to the Holy God who created the heavens and the earth. Healing Lord, please........ healing. Mercy. Please. Certainly You can do it. You can heal this boy. For it is to you, oh Lord that we look for the supernatural, for the unexpected.
Please pray for this family. Josh is such an incredible young man who loves Jesus. He loves to lead worship, share his faith, and encourage his brothers and sisters to do the same.
Please pray for Josh's special friend, Jordan, too. She is hurting for him as well.

As I wait for you......
I'm fallin' on my knees
Lord, hear my cry.