Wednesday, March 30, 2011


Random dancing.
Smiles and getting along.  uhm...wait a minute.  who are you and what have you done with my daughters?
The boy.  He cleans.
His room? 
His golf clubs....obviously.

somehow, he enlists the help of an unsuspecting sister.

Time to break in the grill.  Winter:  you are over.  I'm cooking outside now. 

Book Review

So I tried my hand at a "professional" book review:

By Tara M. Case

Check it out. 
The book is EXCELLENT.
The author is pretty nice, too!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I told you it was a conspiracy

The gas prices.

I'm not kidding.

Remember the last time I filled the gas tank, the prices dropped by like a dime....that is 10 entire cents....about 10 minutes after I pulled out from the gas station.

I joked with my daughter how it must be some conspiracy....and that prices will no doubt go back up 10 minutes before I need gas again.

Today I needed gas.

And the price went up.  Today.

oh my gosh.....i knew it. 

Gas prices have something against me.

If you want to know when to fill up, just ask me....prices will be low when my tank is full.  And vice versa.  It's like a mathematical equation. 
I hate math. 

I'm going to try and outsmart the gas prices next time.  I'm not going to make eye contact with the price board for 24 hours before I need gas. 

And I'm not going to be thinking about getting gas when I drive by in case they can read my mind. 

It's not becuase I'm crazy or anything. 
I think we all know that I've moved a step or two beyond that. 

Monday, March 28, 2011

A Slideshow Update

So...gotta keep up with my "scrapbooking"

Starring in this week's photos:

Claire writes and sings me a song

8th grade field trip....Mrs. Frett takes pic of me while I'm taking pic of her. All the kids want to be just like us when they grow's true....they just don't want to say it.  But you can just tell.

Nathan won't look at me while I get the camera out.  But all of his friends do

Dinner at the Grunders. 

Marisa and my sweet baby neice, Avery

Other random photos....for the sake of random-ness...and because we are just fun.

Sometimes it's good to know.

It's always nice when visiting with your local law enforcement and you start off by saying:

"Will I go to jail if....."

And the friendly crime-stopper responds in a manner that lets you believe that he hears that sort of things all the time. 

It eases some tension.
And it's just good to know. 

Sunday, March 27, 2011

The 2nd Reason

So I'm going to try my hand at writing a "professional" book review. 
I've never done this before, but have always wanted to try it. 

I got my hands on the first book that I am going to review.

And the first words that came from the woman who handed it to me were something like this:
You'll cry.

The Girl-Talk-Translation of that means:
It's good.

It's a story about cancer
about life
about love
about hope

And she was right.
I had some tears.
And I think it is one of those stories that makes you a different person when you are done reading.

I'll be sure to post my review when I'm done as well as a link to where you can get the book.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Big Scare

I'm talking about the "C" word.

you know the one. 


It has no doubt affected all of us, in one way or another.

I was going to say "directly or indirectly"

but i had i hard time typing that one out. 

Because even if we have not "directly" had cancer.....
....when someone close to us has, it "directly" affects us.

And I know this.
I live this. 

About a year-and-a-half ago, I noticed a spot on Brian's back.
It was there for a while, but it was....changing.

As it turned out, "suspicious" translated into "cancer."
And, you know, it was the kind there isn't a cure for. 
So the question(s) then becomes....
can we get it out?
has it traveled?
how long?

I have since come to hate and love each of these questions. 
Because I am a different person because of them.

The long story, short is that my love
had cancer
It didn't travel to the lymph nodes
But there is never
really an
"out of the woods"

It's more of a
"Keep a really close eye out for any more suspicions"

The two of us
and both of our families
have gone through
the depression
and healing
that comes with this particular
diagnosis and prognosis.

And for ME, personally,
It has become one of those things that was scary
and threatening
and then.......
....just something that I forgot to think about.

Until this morning.

For 2 reasons.
Both seemingly unrelated.
Except that I have this faith/intuition/gut-feeling
that the 2 reasons
are totally related.....and meant to be.....for me.

(just a side note here, so so so sorry if you are expecting to read more than my personal journal-type thoughts wisdom, no humor, no insight.....just thoughts processed out on the page here)

I saw a "spot" on my brian.
I did not panic.
Outwardly, anyway.
I investigated.
And it turns out to be nothing more than a bruise.
Which I humorously blew off
in a way that is
probably not for me to 

But it made me feel emotional
And take another thought
about the fragility of the life we have.

And emotional about the life we are promised
(as a believer....that's me)

And I am tearful
In that, ugly sort of crying way that I can sometimes get

And thankful
In the very same tears and breath. 

It brings back all of those questions
and fragility
and insecurity.

Becuase, you know that hate/love thing I mentioned before?
I hate to think
about all of the moments
that I have wasted
on things that really don't matter
in this life
or in the eternal life.

And I want to love
and embrace
every single moment
of this life
that i am not promised

So that in the the heaven that i am promised
I can look back on
and say
"that mattered"
"i was there"
"i left it all on the field" (so to speak)

And no matter what
Whether it is my love
my kids
my family
my extended family
my neighbors
my coworkers
anyone who i am close to

I can say that I lived these words:

And now these three remain: faith, hope and love. But the greatest of these is love.
1 Corinthians 13:13

And now.
Are you ready for the second reason?
Stay tuned.....

I'm too choked up right now. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

8th Grade Field Trip and 1 Lucky Mama

It's been a few years since I have been on a field trip with the Wildcat. 

And I love love love it that he is old enough to make it so I would expect that he wouldn't want me to come along on these sort of things......
BUT....he still wants me to come along on these sort of things.

Making me a lucky mama. 

I knew I was lucky when the volunteer slip came home and he asked me if I could go..... opposed to just "showing me" the slip 2 days after it is due. 

And I knew I was a lucky mama when he texted me last night (from his dad's house) and said "FINANCE PARK w/MOM 2MOROW!!!"

And I knew that I was extremely lucky when son texted mom this morning to remind her to pack a lunch.....(she would've most likely forgotton?!)

But lucky....
...I mean
really lucky.....

came this afternoon.

When the wildcat risked it all....
....and gave his mama a 1.5 second hug.

Which is just long enough to be deliberate.
But not long enough to be extremely noticable.....
....except to the science teacher who promised she didn't see a thing.

I changed my mind. 
I'm not just a lucky mom.
I'm blessed. 

What a gift. 

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Job and Hobby....which is which?

Sometimes the people closest to me do not really know what I'm writing.  Or that I'm writing

That's because they see me working at a local coffee shop. 

And maybe think that writing is my "hobby."

That's okay to think that. 
But the truth is that the coffee shop job is officially my hobby.

Because I make more in freelance writing than I do at my day job.

Don't get me wrong; I make pretty good change for the amount of time that I work at the coffee shop. 
And I openly admit that I cannot afford to have a "hobby" that doesn't pay. 

And good business practices tell me that I should be spending more time on the things that pay more. 

But I like people. 
So a "hobby" that pays
And lets me be around people
Is still a good investment of time.

(Plus, also, I'm a pretty good cook. And I can handle big crowds.  I think that being a foodie and parenting may perhaps play a key role here.)

"The master in the art of living makes little distinction between his work and his play, his labor and his leisure, his mind and his body, his information and his recreation, his love and his religion.  He hardly knows which is which.  He simply pursues his vision of excellence at whatever he does, leaving others to decide whether he is working or playing.  To him he is always doing both." 
~James Michener

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Dear Winter, It is spring. Get over yourself, already.

So someone told me today that it may snow.

I restrained myself from kicking this guy in the shins, because I happen to love him, and I promise that I do act far more mature than the thoughts in my head. 

But I am sorta mad about this news.

I'm mad at winter for not respecting that it is spring. 

So it better not snow tonight.
Or even hint at snow. 

Besides, I've already painted my toenails in celebration of spring, and I'm ready to break out some flip-flops.

I only said that I wouldn't hurt anybody because I'm mad.
I didn't say I wouldn't pout.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Things that made me smile today:

Getting an article done.

Paying off a bill.

Visiting with a neighbor.

My pretty neice.

The crossing gaurd who pulled the Wildcat aside today to tell him that he noticed our front headlight was out this morning.

And this guy for fixing it:

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Inspiration for Today

"Most people never run far enough on their first wind to find out they've got a second.

Give your dreams all you've got and you'll be amazed at the energy that comes out of you."

~William James

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Church and Pizza with the Fam.

 This is us.  Claire, Tookie, me, Nathan, our friend Sam, gram in the back, Marz, and gramp
Mom and dad were too much out of their comfort zone to sit in front, so they sat in the second row. 
Usually they are in like the back 40 somewhere.
(thanks for taking this pic for me debbie!)
Claire and Took.  pretty eyes.

Pizza.  We added another friend to our group.
We are friendly like that. 
These two talked about boys the whole time, I'm sure.
And I think they texted each other even tho they were right next to each other. 
I could be wrong.
Hi Emma!

Saturday Slideshow

One of the things I try to do here is post some pics. 
I'm a horrible scrapbooker.  (love it, but am consistently inconsistent)
So this sort of serves as my scrapbook.
For when I'm old and can't remember.

i mean, when i'm older

bear with me.  this is more for me than it is for you!
Here's what's up that I haven't posted about this week.

brady's haircut
hanging out with friends
the girl scouts throw a great party.  bounce house had my girls bouncing off the walls.  literally.
popcorn and movie night

Friday, March 18, 2011

i'm not going to throw a huge fit or anything

no, i'm not.
even if i am a little mad that the price of gas has stepped down by nearly a dime a gallon since i purchased a tank of it a couple days ago. 
i'm not gonna stomp my feet or cross my arms or pout or any of that fit-throwing stuff. 

and even though i have driven by the gas pumps about a half a dozen times today
and even though i let out a tiny little "hmph" every time i did....

...i did not throw a fit and explain to my jr. high daughter
 how there must be some sort of conspiracy set up to drop the prices about 10 minutes after i save up 2 weeks worth of tips to gas up my car.......any more than one time, today. anyway. 

My kids are proud of me.
throwing only One fit is definitely a sign of maturity on my part. 

Thursday, March 17, 2011

we interrupt this blog-cast...

We interrupt this blogcast for a routine test....
Rest assured that this is only a test
Designed specifically for the blogsite author
To question her sanity
And ask herself important questions
That are not unlike
Those that require looking into a mirror.

Should an this be an actual sanity questioning emergency
Viewers would be given specific instructions
For the proper procedure
In following the blog
In question.

We apologize for the momentary break
In blogcast programming
And promise to resume
With the normal nonesense
You've become accustomed to. 

Just kidding.
It's been a long day.
And not the first time in the last couple of weeks
Where I am asking myself:
Am I a hard person to talk to?
I didn't think I was.
But am I somehow coming off that way?
Or maybe it isn't me at all. 

And now,
We return to our normal blogsite programming
Already in progress.

I love when I can spring my insanity on totally unsuspecting blog surfers
And local pharmacies!
(i know you are out there!)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Cars and Conferences

So today

yes, today.

Full of highs and lows. 

My car wouldn't start this morning.
Wouldn't even act like she was going to start. 
Made a bunch of clicking noises flashed a few lights at me.

And then said No, I am not starting for you this morning.

So fortunately for me, today was just a lovely day for a walk. 
And I walked.  To work.
Which was busy.
In a good sort of busy way. 

(don't forget to tip your waitress.  the cook gets a share of those.  wednesday was a nice tip day!)

Got home.
Brian came and got my keys to try and start my car.

And wouldn't you know it.
She started right up.

What a b.

Drove the car to the gas pump and the car shop.  Explained what was going on.
With the car, I mean.
Could be battery issues.
could be electrical issues.

But I'm pretty sure it is PMS.
PMS is a difficult concept to explain to a car mechanic.

Had parent teacher conferences tonight. 

Heard lots of great things about my kids.
Which made me want to cry.
Because I know how much I try and they just keep turning out great in spite of me!
(just kidding...these kids are my heart)

I walked up to one Jr. High teacher and said, Hey, wanna talk about my kids.
She said, only if you want to hear how great they are.
And I'm all like:  Is that all you got?

And she meant it. 

Which makes me so proud I could cry.

And I do not have PMS.
I swear. 

And on a totally related note:
I got a chance to talk to someone tonight and I think I may have made a new friend.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Day 25

My 4th grader had a bad start to her day.

She got to school just in time to throw up in a trash can in front of her class. 

Making this DAY 25 of someone being sick in our house. 

But the good news....not that there is good news, but since i am grasping for any sort of silver lining I that she is now on an antibiotic along with her sister. 

Not that she can keep it down or anything. 
(there goes my silver lining)

Antibiotics = Drugs
Drugs = another visit to my most favorit-est pharmacy!
Favorite pharmacy = HANNAH
Hannah = Chocolate!  (she gives me a treat every time i come in)
(and i am a regular at this pharmacy)

So I belly up to the bar at my favorite pharmacy and Hannah's treat for me today was Dove Milk Chocolate with Caramel.

Do you know why I love Dove chocolate?
Besides the chocolate, I mean.
Dove chocolate is inspirational. 
Each piece is wrapped in foil with a nice message on the inside.

And my piece of "inspiration" today says: 
"You should charge for your great advice"

Thanks Hannah!

This reminds me of a pair of jeans I once I had. There was a random inspirational message on a tag sewed in right next to my zipper.  On the inside, so I could only see it when I was going to the bathroom. 
Because who doesn't like being inspired while on the toilet, right? 

I don't fit in to these jeans anymore. 
Not since I discovered the "inspiring" dove chocolate. 

By the way, I think my pharmacist is jealous because I haven't even mentioned his name here on the blog.  He didn't say it, but I'm pretty sure he was thinking "hannah, hannah hannah!" in sort of a Jan Brady "marsha! marsha! marsha!" kind of way. 

So here is an official world-wide-web shout out to Ron the pharmacist:  who gave me a girl scout cookie and helped me get off that nose spray i got addicted to a few years back.  he also scored me some samples of alieve last year and that one time when i had a little bit of a spinal fusion surgery on my neck, he told  me that i probably wouldn't die from it and sold me a stool softener because i thought i was going to die from the side effects of neck surgery medication.....this single act in itself gave me hope for the future. 

Plus also:  he hired hannah.

Thanks Ron.  I'll add you to my christmas card list too.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


It's officially our 21st day of on-again, off-again sick-days in our house.

Today it's tookie.

I mean, today it's tookie....again.

poor kid.

Friday, March 11, 2011

If your name is "Hannah"

If your name is Hannah, and you filled my perscription today, I'd like to say:

Thanks for the raspberry chocolate candy.

You deserve a raise.

And if you'd like, click right HERE for a nice little story about an angel/pharmacy-tech-lady who I like to refer to (in my mind) as a pharmacy hero. 

'Cause you make getting drugs fun.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Another Sick Day

The question around here isn't 'is anyone sick today?'

but rather....

'Who is sick today?'

Today it's Tookie

random time, random place

At the band concert last night, I ran in to a friend who I probably haven't seen since the last band concert. 
We got to catch up briefly before the start of the concert.....

Even though we don't see each other that often, every time we do, it's like we haven't missed a beat.  (pun intended)

In the very short time we had, we visited about what probably seemed like random-catching-up-on-our-lives-and-kids-conversation. 

But for some reason, our chance meeting at the band concert, and some things that she said....were exactly the words that I really needed to hear. 

She probably doesn't know it, and would understandably be freaked out if I said it to her.....but she was the miracle that God put in my life yesterday. 

By the way, the concert was great.

Saturday, March 5, 2011


Time for a little style show.

Jr. High had an '80s dance last week.
The girls had fun dressing up.

I think Nathan just flipped his collar up. 
That works too!

When asked what kinds of stuff I wore in the '80s....I told them that we dressed up in sweaters with a shirt with a collar underneath....and flipped the collar up.
And we "tabbed" our jeans.  Folded them over and rolled them up.

As you can see from the photos....Marz didn't think what I wore was "cool enough" for the 80s dance. 

When I stop to think, I probably wasn't "cool enough" when I was actually in the '80s either. 

Friday, March 4, 2011

The Friday Funnies

It is time
to NOT be so serious.

It is time....
for the Friday Funnies.

(thanks lisa, for making me laugh with this one!)

There is a new study about women and how they feel about their asses; the results were pretty interesting:

30% of women think their ass is too fat...

10% of women think their ass is too skinny...

The remaining 60% say they don't care, they love him, he's a good man and they wouldn't trade him for the world.

Finding a Voice

Have you ever felt like you were searching for just the right thing?

That there was undoubtedly something out there that would really just make

I've heard variations of this thousands of times.
May have even said some of them.....

If I only had the right career/person/money/be married/live the dream......

Do you know what I mean?

Time out for a sec: 
forgive me if you aren't following.  this may be one of those posts that is more for me, than you. 
What I like to call free therapy.
my apologies.

Time in: 
I think that the key for me, as I have been learning over the last few years, has more to do with finding my own voice, and being comfortable with it, rather than always looking  around the next corner for the next thing....or than to define myself by my career/marital status/bank account. 

By the way, i am sitting here super early in the morning.  Because I can't sleep.  Again. 
And I am really mad about that, I might add. 
But for some unknown reason, things like this seem to come to me and keep me up in the middle of the night.

I love to take care of my family.  My home.  To cook. 
I love reading with my kids.
And watching them play sports.
And getting into their worlds as they grow into who they were meant to be. 

I should probably stop it with the whole mentality that if I just can get to the next step....right around the corner....the job/money/role....that that is what will bring me happiness.

Because if it never happens, then i might miss out on being happy right where i am at. 

I love to write. 
It gives me a voice. 
I am most comfortable in this role.
And I have alot to say.

I guess it feels good to not just find any voice, but to find my own voice. 

The End of this Post

can you tell that i am tired?

edited to note....if you are an editor of a newspaper or magazine and want me to write for you, than that indeed would make me happy....and i may change my mind on all of what i just said.'s my voice. 

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Rest Assured

That today I'm being a grown-up.

And am thinking about real-life, big-girl things. 

And health insurance.