Monday, November 28, 2005

my calendar

I haven't posted anything on my calendar lately,... so I thought I'd fill you in. This is the month of November. Incredible isn't it?

As a matter of fact, I'm heading to one of those "meetings" tonight, fulfilling my civic responsibility. It's officially my resignation meeting though. I'm not going to be the secretary of the group any more, and tonight is the night I get to tell them! :)

Since it is the end of November, I was looking over the notes on the calendar pages one last time before flipping the page in a couple days... I must have missed this one, or I certainly would have blogged about it a couple weeks ago....

"November 17, 1992 - A Dateline expose reveals that GM trucks are unsafe if you attach explosives to the gas tanks and detonate them."

Am I the only one who thinks that is hysterical? You gotta love Dateline's reports.... :)

Sunday, November 27, 2005

1989 Journal Entry

I spent some time this weekend cleaning out my desk and ran across this old journal. Haleigh was 2, Lindsey 6 weeks... me... wow... 21. It's like a time capsule.

April 12, 1989 2:30pm

I think I am going to be crazy by the end of this day. So far, I have put Haleigh to bed about six times, saved Lindsey just in the nick of time from being stomped on, saved Lindsey from a roller coaster ride in her swing after Haleigh pushed her, tried to rock Haleigh to sleep for about 1 ½ hours, and while I was on the telephone with Marge, she managed to drag out 150 tissues from the tissue box, rip off the binding from her best, biggest, and most expensive book, and eat nearly all the frosting from a cake sitting on the stove.

I have spanked her, talked to her, spanked her, talked to her, and am about to spank her again because she is now in her room, standing on her bed and pulling the strings on the curtain so they open… close….. open…..close…. be right back!

Frustration is setting in. Haleigh is crying, Lindsey is now crying, and I am about to cry too. I have one million things to do and her I am writing in my journal and trying to ignore them all… it isn’t working.

Saturday, November 26, 2005

the meatloaf bites the dust

It could have been perfect.
It could have been good.

BUT... as I already mentioned, the girls vetoed the veal.
So, we went with pork and beef. Stuffed meatloaf. You're supposed to blend all these great flavors together and then layer them with leftover stuffing in the middle. I know it doesn't sound that great, but it looked awesome.

So, we vetoed the veal. Then, when it came time to make it, someone had gone before me and eaten the leftover stuffing. We left it out. Decided to blend all the spices and flavors together and make an incredible UNstuffed meatloaf.

It cooked for about an hour. I had made a great twice baked potatoe out of the leftover potatoes and heated up the green bean casserole. Called everyone to the table and they were starting to come in to the kitchen (it takes a while in my house to gather everyone).

As I took the meatloaf out of the oven, I gingerly placed in on top of the stove to cool for a while , then just before everyone came into the kitchen, I carried it proudly to the table.

Right before I got there, however, I realized a moment too late that the bowl was incredibly slippery and it fell out of my hands.... right onto the floor,... and splattered all over the floor, literally splattered everywhere... pan and all broken to pieces and blasted to smitherines...

we ate leftover turkey .....

Friday, November 25, 2005

Lazy Day After

Lazy Day After

We had great plans today… but at the last minute we decided it was too cold out to go anywhere, and so now we are sooooooooo lazy. Sitting around watching the Food Network and all the great ideas for leftover recipes. Great Thanksgiving and lots of great food, then everyone watches the great cooks on tv and then we all want to cook again!  What in the world???

We had a great Thanksgiving.  One thing I have always appreciated about my husband is his willingness to totally pitch in and help with the cooking.  He peeled so many potatoes yesterday morning. I think we both kind of overestimated how many potatoes you need to make mashed potatoes for twelve people.  It’s definitely not a 5 gallon bucket full.  That’s way too many.  We had leftover mashed potatoes all over the place!

We had plates of mashed potatoes for supper, we ate mashed potatoes for a midnight snack, then got up this morning and I made potato pancakes, then I made a twice baked potato casserole for supper tonight…. I think we might have used them all up finally.  I didn’t realize a person could be so creative with leftover mashed potatoes.  I was almost wishing I had a few more,… I had some more ideas!

To go with our potato casserole, I wanted to make this great looking stuffed meatloaf for supper…. with veal, pork, beef, made into a meatloaf and stuffed with leftover stuffing.  But the girls vetoed the veal idea.  They are such chickens!  The thought of eating a baby cow didn’t sit too well with them, so we opted for just pork and beef.  I guess the grown up animals are okay to eat, but not the babies.

Abbie got inspired and made our dessert.  Emily even pitched in with the potato pancakes this morning.

Why is it so hard to do anything but cook and eat when you sit around and watch the food network?

Tomorrows challenge is to figure out how to creatively rid ourselves of some turkey and cranberry sauce…

holiday shopping



Thanksgiving is officially past.

I ate too much Turkey

I ate too much Turkey, I ate too much corn,
I ate too much pudding and pie.
I'm stuffed up with muffins and too much stuffin'
I'm probably going to die.
I piled up my plate and I ate and I ate.
But I wish I had known when to stop,
For I'm so crammed with yams,
sauces, gravies, and jams
That my buttons are starting to pop!
I'm full of tomatoes and french fried potatoes
My stomach is swollen and sore,
But there's still some dessert
so I guess it won't hurt
if I eat just a little bit more!

Tuesday, November 22, 2005


Thanksgiving Dayn.
  1. The fourth Thursday of November, observed as a legal holiday in the United States to commemorate the feast held at Plymouth in 1621 by the Pilgrim colonists and members of the Wampanoag people and marked by the giving of thanks to God for harvest and health.

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire.
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something,
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations,
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Be thankful for each new challenge,
Because it will build your strength and character,

Be thankful for your mistakes,
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary,
Because it means you’ve made an effort.

It’s easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those
Who are also thankful for the setbacks.

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive.

Find a way to be thankful for your troubles,
And they will become your blessings.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Psalm 119:114

You are my refuge and my shield; I have put my hope in Your word.

Thursday, November 17, 2005


The word of the day today is:

epitaph - n. 1. an inscription on or at a tomb or grave in memory of the one buried there. 2. a brief statement commemorating or epitomizing a deceased person or something past.

I didn't realize it had that second meaning.

Okay, somewhat morbid to think about --- but mostly if you don't know Christ.
But, an interesting thing to poll the blogosphere about.

What do you hope your epitaph says when you have gone to be with Christ in heaven?

Recess Duty

It was teacher appreciation at Em's school today. We parents made salads and lunch food for the teachers and took over their normal duties so they could enjoy the lunch hour. I had recess duty. I signed up before I knew how cold it was going to be...

I arrived at the school and checked in as a visitor just in time to have the lunch room mommy march in with a child and proclaim "She has a tummy ache too."

"too"... that word sunk in a second or so.

The secretary said "What's for lunch? This is the third one with a stomach ache."


I headed out the door, and as I was just getting used to the 11 degree heat wave, a child looked quite forlorn. She was being comforted by her friend. I thought I would be nice and see why she was so sad.

"Because... I feel like I'm gonna puke..."

I quickly escorted her into the nurse's office before her problem became mine, and headed out for the remainder of my recess duty.

The first thing I noticed was that it was bitterly cold. The second thing I noticed was how many children had no mittens and were running around with their coat unzipped. I was trying to run around and zip up the coats and beg them to put on mittens. I was surprised how many didn't have them...... One child was sitting on the outdoor bench with his boot and sock off, dumping the rocks out of his boots. I headed over to rescue his toes from frostbite just in time for him to stick it back on with the sock halfway on and run to play with his friends. Note to self: buy lots of mittens and donate them to the school for these precious hands.

My mind wandered for a moment on how I should be sure to tell the principal to send a note home URGING the parents to send warmer mittens for their kids.. then I was thrust back into reality... RECESS DUTY.

It was more like combat duty!
Note to parents: You should seriously see how our beloved, blameless brood behave when at school on recess.

I must have had at least 15 kids involved in some sort of altercation.

**Use your whiney-est voices when you read the following quotes out loud**

"Zach is following us and we don't like it"

"We were playing and he keeps bugging us"

"I wanted to swing and I don't want to run and they won't listen to me"

"I feel like Zach is stalking me"

I handled that last one in a very diplomatic way... even the finest full-time educator couldn't have done a better job.
"STALKING!?!" I said. "This is RECESS. It's not possible to STALK at recess! He's in third grade for God's sake! Play nice."

I know one thing for sure. When my daughter comes home and says someone at recess did something to her. I will turn it around and say "Play nice". The "victim" is never innocent, as I witnessed so clearly this afternoon.

Do you want to know what else I noticed? Most of the whiners were boys! I know, I know. I wouldn't have believed it myself if I had not witnessed it with my own eyes and ears. Given my long history with feisty females, I would have surely thought the whiners would be girls. But, nope. Not true today for sure. All boys.

I witnessed boys arguing over things I didn't realize boys argued over. I watched boys practice their wrestling moves on each other. I saw first hand how boots become muddy, hats get lost, and snowpants get holes.

I watched as one by one, the kids, eager for winter sports to begin, but not having enough snow to quite have too much fun, ran and slid down the partly snow covered incline for lack of an actual hill and toboggan. They ran and ran, then let loose and slid on their knees and rears. Their run was really longer than the actual slide, which ended quite abruptly when their knees hit the rock on the area where the playground equipment started. It looked quite painful really. No doubt bruises will be the topic of conversation in the bath tonight as the children claim they are unaware how they got there and that they have NO CLUE as to how the holes appeared in their fresh, new snowpants.

Now we know.

I have a new appreciation for the teachers on recess duty. Every parent should experience it at least once.

Tuesday, November 15, 2005


I just read Beefy’s Blog and it reminded me of something that happened to me a few years ago so I thought I’d share.  Now don’t TELL me you haven’t had a similar experience!

Okay, I was walking into Kwik Star and going to purchase something when this car pulls up to me.  I look into the car and there is a lady in the back seat with a baby.

Lady: “HI!” … as if I am an old friend.
Me: “Hi!” … as if I know her.
Lady: “How are YOU doing?”
Me: “Great!  How are YOU?”
Lady: “We’re doing sooo good.  The doctor released us last week and everything is going good”
Me: “Really?!? That’s great!”
Lady: “Yeah, it is incredible how many blessings we have”.
Me: “Yeah, you really need to appreciate that don’t you?”
Lady: “You guys were sure a lot of help, I can’t thank you enough”
For a split second, I hesitated.  I know she is mistaking me for someone else.  But, I am in the middle of it.  Should I admit my faults? No, there is no way I can confess that I am an unknown innocent imposter.  I am committed to it.
Me: “That is our pleasure.  Well, I better get going. It was nice to see you again.  See ya!:”

I am such a people pleaser… I didn’t want her to be uncomfortable in her error.  So, I lied completely.  I wonder if she ever realized her mistake, and then thought… What in the WORLD was that lady THINKING???????

Like I said, don’t TELL me you haven’t done it!

Monday, November 14, 2005

Happy Birthday Dad

Today is my dad’s birthday.  He is 65.
We have been through a lot together, my dad and me.
It almost seems like two lifetimes.
My parents were divorced when I was young and there were some real complicated relationship issues between my parents.  I am sure I will never know the depth of the hurt experienced on both sides there.  I am sure I never want to know.
So, there were several years (15 years actually) that I had no contact with my dad, didn’t know him or who he was or what he did or anything.  
I have gone through a lot of emotion with my dad.  I loved him, hated him, resented him, pitied him, mourned him really.
Then, when I was 21 years old, was reunited with him.
We have had a relationship ever since.  That was 16 years ago. This year marks a new era.  I have now officially known my dad longer than I have not known him.
I can now say I really know my dad.  
Is he perfect? No.  Am I? Double no. Well, triple no.
I can now say, after lots of time and emotion, and confusion… that I love my dad sincerely.  I respect him, and I honor him.
Thanks dad for being there for me now.  For making up for the time lost, for being the incredible grandfather that you are.  For the hours of playing barbies, just to spend time with your granddaughters as children, for letting them drive your cool car as teenagers.  Thanks for the billions of trips to Horton just to bring me eggs and flour.  Thanks for mowing, for weeding, for yardwork galore when I am tired.
Thanks for who you are.  For being polite and teaching my kids by example about manners and respect. And for being real.
I know that our lifetime has created much heartache for you.  I know that you wish things had been different, and you too mourn what was lost between us.
Thank you for not looking back to what should have been, but for looking forward to what can be.
Happy 65th birthday dad.  

Sunday, November 13, 2005

my blog entry for today

I was sitting in church tonight and I thought of a million zillion things I could blog about.  Now as I sit in front of the computer, not one comes to mind. Duh.
The word of the day today is “betwixt”.  It means between.  Sometimes this word of the day calendar is really annoying.  As if betwixt is a word I wouldn’t know.  Then, the sentence they use is this:

Jack Sprat could eat no fat, his wife could eat no lean; and so betwixt the two of them, they licked the platter clean.  

I got a little irritated with that too. I believe the poem goes “and so between the two of them”…. I’d like to smack that calendar writer.
So hostile I know.
I am eating crow now though… for those of you that don’t know what eating crow is, it is an expression you use when you make a grievous error.

I ripped off the calendar page, since it is 11:44pm and the day is nearly done, and I am somewhat annoyed at the word betwixt and the use of it in an incorrect sentence. As I go to toss it energetically into the trash, something catches my eye on the back …. I start to read…

Perhaps you’ve always said “and so between the two of them.” That’s fine, but when the Jack Sprat nursery rhyme was created (probably in the 1600’s in reference to Charles I of England and Henrietta Maria, his wife), “betwixt” and “between” were apparently equal.  “Twixt”, like “tween” is closely related to “two”(and the be- prefix is Old English for “by”). A couple hundred years ago, the phrase “betwixt and between” took on a life of its own to mean “neither one thing nor the other”.  At about this same time, “betwixt” fell out of favor, but it’s not archaic; nowadays, it’s simply used more consciously than “between”.

Oh… so they did it on purpose. And they even said “that’s fine” oh so politely.  I suddenly feel guilty for wanting to smack the unknown calendar writer. But that brings me to the next question.  What does it mean to use “betwixt” more consciously than “between”?  It’s like saying the same thing isn’t it?

Hey… you can’t have an interesting perplexing fun awesome sassy cool and fantastic (aka popular) blog entry EVERY day.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

word of the day

Word of the Day: riposte \ ri-post\ n

1: a fencer's return thrust after a parry
2: a retaliatory maneuver or response; especially: a quick retort

I wish I were a master of verbal risposte, able to dash off the kind of reply that most people only think of in the car on the way home.

Now you use it in a sentence.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

i dot know

So Shawn won't most likely post this so I figure I will do it instead.
Emily is so good on the computer. Her favorite sites are and and .

She and Shawn were looking for some cool animal sites cuz she's been into animals. And she ran across which has an animal link on it. So, she has been learning at the young age of 6 to surf the net.

She came across a fun thing for kids to do and then a place where you can click on to "send it to a friend". You have to fill in the information and email it to a friend. Here's her information:

Name: Emily
Email Address: I dot know what you men
Friend's Name: Shera Steere
Friend's Email: same as me

She just stinkin cracks me up!

shell bell

My brother is law is the sweetest thing on earth.
He isn't feeling well right now. He went in for a check up and is having several things going on at the same time. He has struggled with so many health issues in his lifetime, and he doesn't complain a whole lot. So, it's hard to know when he isn't feeling good. But, now on top of all the other "stuff", he has pneumonia.

Please take a minute to pray for him today.

I love you, Shelly.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005


I was cleaning out an old box and ran across a journal from last summer's trip to Mexico....

Wed, July 14, 2004
The church we went to today was in a very poor area two hours away. We did a vacation bible school in the afternoon in the park and there were a ton of children there. I think this was, by far, the largest crowd we have attracted the entire time we have been here. I would have to guess there were over a hundred and fifty kids here. It was a heart wrenching day. Most of the families cook in holes in the ground covered with palm branches. After lunch, there was a woman who brought her daughter to us because she was sick. She couldn't have been more than four years old. The doctor looked her over and asked her a few questions. The baby had a cough and a fever which had lingered for over a month. She needed a chest xray and to be checked for tuberculosis. She didn't have any money to take a taxi to a clinic as it was a long ways away and it cost 200 pesos. 200 pesos. That is about 20 dollars. We gave her the money to take the child. There was no more for me at that point. I lost it. Everything inside of me wanted to scream and curse this place where children are hungry and sick. Every negative thing at this point attacked me and set me off into tears for a long long time. I saw a look on Dr. Roger's face, a frustration of sorts, of knowing what to do, and not being able to fix it. And hoping and praying that this woman's sick child will motivate her to take her baby to the doctor for help. 200 pesos is a lot of money to her. 200 pesos. I've wasted 200 pesos on snacks, souveniers, and water the past five days. 200 pesos. 20 dollars. I spent that on a lunch date with Shawn before I left. My shoes are 500 pesos. My shirt 250. The pain in my heart is immeasurable.

And yet, an almost surreal feeling comes upon me. A realization that this is the life they know. I only hurt for their loss because I have been spoiled with materialism. Trusting Christ for every day and every moment is so real for them. ... in all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy path. Oh that I could be more like these precious God fearing Christians.

my favorite things

Some of my all time favorite things might surprise you.

#5 – time alone: as much of a people person as I am, I never get over how great it is to have time alone. Time to do whatever I want. Time to think, dream, regenerate. Surf the net or clean the kitchen, whatever I WANT to do.

#4 – a crisp fall morning in Iowa – there is nothing like it. When the trees have changed color and are in the process of falling. I love those mornings when the leaves are falling and you can watch them fall. You can just see the seasons change before your eyes. The breeze is crisp, but not quite cold yet. It smells fresh and clean. I love that.

#3 – snuggling with my girls – at any given moment, I can bring myself to tears if I just think of a time when I snuggle with my girls. Ever since they were babies, and we would fight over who gets to sleep with the baby on your chest, we have loved to snuggle with them. Even as teenagers, I have to resist the urge at times (and sometimes I don’t resist) to crawl under the covers with them and snuggle.

#2 – cooking – but only when I have the time. I hate the “whatarewegoingtohaveforsupper” rush when I come home from work and I’m unprepared. But, I love Saturdays and Sundays when I actually have time to make something good and take my time at it. I love to try new recipes. This week I made this incredible pumpkin cheesecake cake. It was a pumpkin cake, with cheesecake ingredients swirled into it. So when it baked, it had this layer of cheesecake and a layer of pumpkin cake. It was sooooooooooooooo good. I think I undercooked it a bit – that’s the problem with new recipes. But, still it was good.

#1 – this has to be my all time #1 favorite thing ever. I love the first drink of the first cup of coffee in the morning. It has to be super hot, and when you swallow it, it burns all the way down to your toes. Shawn thinks I’m insane, but it’s true. There is nothing like the perfect cup at the perfect hotness.

I wonder what heaven will be like… will I be alone while I snuggle with my girls on a crisp fall morning while cooking and continuously drinking the first swallow of hot coffee?

Sunday, November 06, 2005


We’re all excited at our office. We have the greatest theatre
in the area. Now playing: Chicken Little Rated G, Dreamer: Inspired by a true story Rated G, and The Legend of ZORRO rated PG.
AND – its really fun when we work late, cuz the theatre is just across the street. When the marquee lights up and we are working, it’s always so exciting!

The theatre was renovated in 2000 I think, and the upper part – which I hear is pretty large – was made into a residential single family dwelling where the theatre’s manager and family lives.

The theatre is going to be featured on HGTV’s ReZoned. They are coming this week to film!

Maybe we’ll get some free advertising. We better clean up the messy office!

Word of the Day

Word of the Day:
Fulsome \’fĂșl-sem \ adj 1: characterized by abundance : copious 2: exceeding the bounds of good taste : overdone 3:excessively complimentary or flattering : effusive

Friday, November 04, 2005

apple crisp

If I'd have known that posting my bad mood on my blog would have brought me this delicious scrumptious plate of heaven, I would have posted my mood long ago.

Thanks for lifting my spirits friend! You are the best ever!

PS I updated my house blog. Check it out.

Thursday, November 03, 2005


I've been kind of grumpy lately. Too many irritations I guess. Too much stress. I wanted to write a blog but them I remembered what Thumper says: "If you can't say somethin nice, don't say nothin at all"... well, actually, I think it was one of Thumper's parents.

So, I'm not sayin nothin today.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005