The position of the moon

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The moon was looming low overhead as we drove home the other night. Blair, with astonishment, yelled, as she noticed it. It was beautiful and appeared larger and closer to us than normal. "Objects in mirror are closer than they appear," I thought and wondered what was the phenomenon that causes this occurrence. The kids asked questions, "Do you think we could see the flag on it if we had a super powerful telescope?" "Does it look like it's falling out of the sky?" "What would happen if it does fall out of the sky?" "Is it cold on the moon?"

We couldn't take our eyes off of this beautiful celestial body.

The mysteries of the moon have puzzled great thinkers for centuries. Astronomers and researchers all have their theories, dating back to Aristotle. There are many ideas as to why the moon appears larger on the horizon but none have ever been proven. Even Nasa has no real explanation.

They basically say that it is either an optical illusion or how the brain perceives the sky as a flattened dome rather than a true hemisphere. Others say it is the angle from which you are viewing.

In any case it is about perspective.

While some situations in life never change, as in this case, the size of the moon, seeing it from a new perspective can change the whole outlook. Putting yourself in someone's shoes so to speak, can cause you to be more compassionate, more forgiving; better. It's your perception or how you internalize it, that causes this phenomenon.

After my father died of cancer, I watched a segment on t.v. about a hospital that was working with oncology med students, nurses, doctors and interns. These people had to ride a stationary bike for hours and the resistance settings on the bikes were automatically changed for them, causing higher inclines. They did this for hours and were winded, tired and worn out after it was over. Then they were told that this is how their chemotherapy patients feel after a treatment. Some of them cried because they just had no idea and were moved to be more compassionate.

Many great organizations have been started because of a perception. It seems that after we have been affected by a situation, we are more likely to affect change somewhere else.

It's funny how one person sees something a different way from another. One may see a beggar on a street and think they are lazy, working a scam and refuse to give some spare change. Another may see it as someone who has lost their way and are in need. And for whatever its intended use, they give the spare change.

While one sees loud children in a store as unruly, another sees them as everyday kids who may be tired just like theirs and they are oblivious to the sound. And frankly, secretly happy it's not theirs this time.

Human perspectives are interesting and varying don't you think?

Whatever they are, take a moment to look up tonight and see what kind of view you get.

A surprise awakening

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

I woke up and stumbled out of bed. My lower back ached from being sandwiched between a two year-old boy and a 6 year-old dog that likes to curl up behind the bend of my knee. My hands were sore from weeding the flower bed and overgrown garden the day before. A stretch of my fingers pointing upward felt so good. After I stretched my sore muscles, I quietly slipped into the hall. The morning welcomed me and the sunlight beckoned me to the front room.

Then I walked down the hall and happened upon this sight...

A four year-old and an eight year-old were asleep on the couch. One had their foot on the other's head. After scooping them up and taking them to their beds, I surveyed the damage:
Cheerios and tortilla chip crumbs were everywhere. Toothpaste was smeared on the arm of the couch. A wet towel was on the floor; evidence of an attempt to clean. "High school musical" sheet music was thrown about, Nerf dart gun bullets had been shot and papers from the previous night's game of Charades had been used for confetti.

Apparently, they partied it up long after we went to sleep.

I hope this isn't a sign of things to come.

Linking to Design it chic

Avant-garde parenting purchases

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

High heeled pain was the title of one of my last posts. You know I love a good high heel, but for babies? Really? We're always saying with regret that kids grow up too fast, so why do we want to speed up the process? I blame this on Katie Holmes.

When we had our first child we didn't buy anything until the baby was born because we did not find out the sex of the baby beforehand. At my shower, everything was unisex so we were set until the baby arrived. On the way home from the hospital we stopped at the PX and bought some girly things. It was so much fun. From that point on, we decided that was how we were going to approach the rest of the babies that would hopefully come to us. What we didn't do was fall for the unnecessary gadgets and the ridiculous baby items that are out there. I think the most gadgety gadget we bought was an electronic thermometer. You can get caught up in it. has highlighted some of their picks for ridiculous parenting purchases.

Take the Baby Box for example.

If you really feel that this is something you should have, you can go to any store and ask for a box when they are stocking shelves. It will save you $30.00. Reuse, reduce, recycle! I just saw a beautiful, new Moses basket at a thrift shop for $5.00, by the way.

Next up, the Placenta Bear. You read that right, Placenta. (And I just lost my husband as a reader. After his experience, I promised I would never use that word in a sentence. Oops.)

After you emulsify the placenta with sea salt and whatever else needs to be done to it, you sew it up in this bear. And like most stuffed animals, it may end up at the next garage sale you attend.

Bear kit: 25.00,
Average cost of having a baby at a US hospital before
co-insurance: $10,000.00.
Having your spouse run after the people yelling, "Stop! You have my placenta!" and explain that they just purchased the accidentally placed placenta bear at the garage sale: Priceless

If you don't want to do that, their website touts their ideas as "5 fun things you can do with your baby's placenta" so you'll have 4 more things to try. Think placenta pills here people! (How many times can she use placenta in a sentence? you're asking yourself.)

The time out mat.

This makes time-outs fun! Unless this is an adult time-out, I don't want it to be fun. I want it to be silent while they stare at the walls. Actually, I'm describing my time-out...

Theirs is usually defined by weeping and wailing. They would probably stomp on this product and break it anyway so it's a no go for me.
Studies have shown that babies can hear outside sounds and recognize your voice. Why not refine their musical taste while in utero? For $130.00 you can have a pregnancy sound system.
And because it's portable, you can wear it anywhere, just like in the picture. I don't get why she's wearing headphones though...

All I did was sing to my babies. It was zero dollars too. That's so 2008.

What was your best parenting purchase?

Food for thought and health

Monday, July 26, 2010

I just happened to catch a Martha Stewart segment the other day that was really interesting. I don't normally watch this show because the t.v. is usually hijacked by Dora and Spongebob. But by some miracle, the kids were not watching t.v. and the channel just happened to be set. So it caught my attention when I heard the show's introduction. And I was in need of a cleaning break anyway.

The topic: organic food.

We like to buy organic as much as we can. We try to only buy free range beef and chicken. It's not easy to find out my way but it seems that more stores are carrying larger selections. While there are no type of Whole Foods markets in my neck of the woods, we are surrounded by farms and every Saturday there is a farmer's market just 8 miles away. I get my choice of beautiful fruits and vegetables. The Amish grow the tastiest carrots.

During the show I learned that 90% of the food we buy in the stores is corn-based. Not the plump, fresh corn on the cob that is so juicy and sweet but the not-for-human-consumption corn that is fed to animals and used when sweeteners are needed. This type of corn is actually not supposed to be fed to animals either. Being fed only corn causes the cows to get sick and then they are given antibiotics that transfer to their meat. The guest on the show said that it is one of the main reasons for the spike in childhood diabetes and allergies. The information was much more in depth, but you get the gist.

I also found out that the first push for organic gardening was started by a man named J.I Rodale in 1947. It was called the Soil and Health Foundation and is now known as the Rodale Institute, a 333 acre certified organic farm. See here for Martha's segment.

It looked like a great place to visit. But I figured just like Canton's first Mondays and Roundtop in Texas, two places that I have always wanted to visit, (which I also lived near but didn't know about until after I moved!) this was a place that was out of reach. Well, lucky me, it is right in Kutztown. PA. So I'll be heading there to tour the farm and be in organic heaven.

Of course I'll take you along in photos. Stay tuned!

I am now going out to weed the garden. Wish me luck, it's long overdue!

What are your experiences with organic gardening?

Guest post - a Northwest author's short story

Sunday, July 25, 2010

My brother, Blair Dobson, is an author of several short stories and human interest articles. His work has been published in Northwest lifestyle magazines and for the past few years he has been researching material for his books. This short story, The Cherry Tree, was written for a church publication. While most of his stories are better suited for a book, I thought this was the perfect piece for Sunday afternoon blog reading.

Blair and his wife Tami have four children and enjoy residing near the coast of the Pacific Northwest.

"The Cherry Tree"

I completed my service as a missionary in the spring of 1982 having represented my church within the boundaries of Seville, Spain. I spent the last night in the Province of AndalucĂ­a and the final evening at the mission home. After my final interview with my mission president, I retreated to the very room where twenty-two months earlier I had spent my first night as a green missionary.

The time had moved by as fast as the winds carried clouds off over the coastal regions. People back home said I would miss it when it all ended. They were right!

I remember leaning against my bunk and staring at the moon while listening to my fellow companions. They talked about the people they would miss and the impact that this country had on their hearts. They were not alone for I, too, felt the very same way. It challenged me to continue my missionary efforts back home. However, during all my months of service in Spain, something else had an impact upon my heart; a recurring dream that always seemed to get the better of me.

I was raised in the outlying countryside of a small township in the state of Washington. We lived near a place called Prune Hill, which was part of a larger area named Grass Valley. At five years of age, I, along with my younger brother, would run and play the summer away, roaming through hay fields behind our home. Within the valley stood old fruit orchards with several small stands of trees; apple, pear, and cherry but Prune was the most common.

On one occasion, we met two neighbor girls our age and found ourselves swinging under the limbs of a cherry tree. An old tire swing that someone’s father put up kept us entertained. What a thrill it was to have formed a bond and friendship with our new friends, even if they were girls.

We spent long summer days playing in the acreage of tall grass, away from worrisome parents. For several seasons this continued, until one day the family of these two girls packed up their belongings and left without notice. I only knew them by nicknames we gave each other and did not recall their full names.

The remembrance of playful kindred spirits left a huge mark in my life. So large was this impact that I often dreamt of this pair of sisters. As I grew from grade school, the faces of my two friends were hazy and I felt they were somewhat hidden from me. I always assumed the reason for this was that I was very young and thus unable to recognize and identify them as something other than a cherished childhood memory.

The dream itself was very detailed and rarely ever changed. I saw beautiful white blossoms attracting honeybees atop the tree with an old rope and tire swinging under its main branch. Our meeting place would always be under its canopy.

This dream accompanied me through all my years of school, seemingly on a monthly basis and also followed me on my journey an ocean away, with never a hint of change to its state or impression.

During my first year of missionary service, I had this dream several times a month. However, as I progressed toward the final months of my experience in Europe, the dreams for some reason dissipated and images were less clear until almost void. I believed I would never know the identity of my two friends.

Morning had come at the mission home and the time for final good-byes took place. Upon arriving in Madrid, we soon boarded our jet that would carry us back across the Atlantic. We were excited and began to speak English again; more than we thought possible.

As the Elders began to make plans for their personal arrivals and stories of future girl friends falling at their feet were thrown about, I sat quietly allowing the plane to lift me into the air.

We were silent as the plane rose off the ground and headed West. I remember closing my eyes and relaxing my body, leaning back into my seat. The mixture of air hissing through the cabin and the drone of jet engines were the only sounds I heard.

Thoughts eagerly entered my mind. I wanted to continue missionary work at home and I began to ponder with whom I could share this message.
Without warning, a snapshot popped in my mind as if thrown there instantly. What came to my soul was an overwhelming feeling that I was to visit a friend from my teen-age years. Her name was Bonnie and she would be baptized if I shared the Joseph Smith story with her. Never in all my time teaching about Jesus Christ to the citizens of Spain, had I received such powerful inspiration as to the direction and teaching of a particular person.

Within three weeks, I located where Bonnie lived and she grabbed a hold of the church’s teachings quickly and without hesitation. She attended church, young single adult dances, firesides, and various activities. She was excited about her faith.

The spirit throughout the Gospel discussions was stronger than I had ever felt. Bonnie soon became a member of my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day-Saints. After her baptism, we celebrated by visiting some local sites of beauty and just enjoyed the evening talking about our blessings.
The night grew late and it came time to take her home. On the drive home, Bonnie had curled up on the seat next to me and drifted off to sleep. This had been her big day. I humbled myself by whispering a quiet prayer, thanking my Savior for his infinite wisdom and granting me the opportunity of this blessing. I had been guided to Bonnie. He kept alive in me the spirit of missionary work a bit longer.

As I pulled my pick-up truck to a stop, Bonnie began to awake. In her eyes there was gratitude and before I had a chance to open her door, she turned toward me and asked,

“You don’t remember me, do you Blair”? I knew I held a puzzled look to my face.

“You know", she said, "the girl by the cherry tree…”

Collecting Q & A

Friday, July 23, 2010

I have been asked a lot lately about what types of things I look for when out thrifting or antique shopping. I have also been asked how I know when something is valuable or not and what my favorite things are to collect.

So I thought I would take the time to answer those questions.

I never set out to start a collection. I just found things that I liked and suddenly, after a few purchases, a collection was born. So buy what you like and work it in your home. Things always look better en masse than scattered about. And when it comes time that your taste has changed and you are finding other things, you'll have a whole collection to sell to someone else. I go through collecting phases so believe me, there is always someone looking for something and you might have it.
As for the value of an item, I never really know. It just comes from looking it up online and then getting a feel for the next item. I bought the cutest large, antique double stroller about 11 years ago to use as one of my picture props and I have had dealers offer me double what I paid. I am not parting with it though. I have never seen another one like it which is one of the reasons for its value.

Some things I like to collect:

1. Ironstone or transferware -
If you like this type of thing, try thrift shops since antique shops can be pricey. Always check the register mark on the back of the item. There are a lot of different variables with the register mark so just like all works of art, you have to train your eye to the characteristics of ironstone. It's usually heavier and often a creamy white. Some of the English makers were Spode, Wedgewood, J&G Meakin, Wood & Sons, Birks Bros. & Seddon, T & R Boote, Turner & Tomkinson. Ironstone wasn't marked until after 1813 so if it is not marked, it could be very old. If it says "iron ware" it is a reproduction.

2. Typography -
Letterman's letters, old rubber stamps, linens with monograms - I always look out for any initial of my family members. Just after I got married, I began to look for anything with a monogrammed "M" being that was my new last name initial. My favorite letter is my dad's varsity "M" for his high school. My dad gave it to me after I got married and I love it still. Typography has become a huge trend so it's easier to find more things now. But because of that, prices have gone up.

3. Vintage paint by numbers paintings -
I love their muted colors and the usual imperfection of the artist's work. I love that they are a bit of Americana. I tend to like landscape scenes. They are getting harder to find at thrift shops because of the demand. Ten years ago you could get them for a buck a piece at antique malls. Now they are on ebay and you have to pay a bit more. I saw one in a thrift shop recently and it was 27.00 buckaroos. Forget it. Try garage sales. I like to use them in the kids' rooms.

4. Vintage yard sticks -
They are a bit of America gone by. They were made to be useful but to also be a form of advertising. Some have hinges made of copper and fold up adding to their interest. They are great to hang on the wall to measure your children's height. I've seen them folded into a star for a country look, used as a backsplash in a kitchen, glued on to a ledge on a shelf, and made into a table top. My kids just like to open them up and fold them back, over and over. They are going for about $14.00 on ebay and at well-known flea markets. I have not paid more than $3.00 for any of them. So check your local thrift shop.

5. Anything that screams "homemaker" to me -
I love vintage aprons and have quite a few. My mom always had us wear hers when we were little and were learning to bake. I loved that. She also started me on vintage sewing items. My favorite is a bone needle holder that looks like a little doll. I also use vintage buttons and ribbons on projects. You can find these types of things rather inexpensively. My daughter has an old coffee can filled with vintage buttons that we bought for 1.00 at the flea market. Because these types of collections are small, they fit nicely into my sewing basket and don't get strewn about.

My advice: Collect the things you like. If you do, you'll find a use for it. Curio cabinets holding your treasures are kind of becoming a thing of the past. Use those treasures some way. There's no better way to polish the silver like using it - just don't put it in the dishwasher.

**One time I was listening to sports radio in SLC and Jerry Sloan's wife and high-school sweetheart, Bobbye, was on and talking about his doll collection. (Bobbye died after a courageous 6 year battle with cancer.) Jerry Sloan is the coach of the Utah Jazz. Of course the radio guys were having a good laugh about his hobby. Little did they know the kind of money dolls can bring...anyway, a few weeks later, I was at an antique show and high above the heads of the crowd, I saw Jerry Sloan. He was wearing his John Deere hat, perusing the aisles looking for his dolls. *Sigh* I always knew I loved him for some reason...and not just because he's the best coach ever.***

Have a great weekend!

Oh you shouldn't have...

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Shout outs to Montessori School for Learning, Lourie at CA Girl and Baby Boberg Bump for the blog awards.

Montessori for Learning has great activities that you can try for your kids, especially during these months of summer. CA Girl can always entertain you with witty posts about life and Baby Boberg Bump cracked me up when she shared 7 random things about herself and one was, "Sometimes I will hide a can of Coke in my closet just in case company visits and drinks all the Coke in the pantry."

And now I get to pass along the awards and tell you 7 random things about me, just in case you want to know...or not.

1. I can't walk down the detergent aisle in stores. The smells give me headaches and so does the thought of laundry I guess.

2. I like old sit-coms like The Jeffersons, Cosby Show, Happy Days, Cheers and Friends and Seinfeld reruns.

3. I'll watch Sports Center, even when my husband is not at home.

4. I still have some of my 80's clothes for when the kids have 80's day at school, they will be authentic.

5. Hate to lay out in the sun.

6. I landed on my back on a fresh pile of cow manure when my horse threw me.
7. Definitely a toilet paper over the dispenser not under person.

I will be working on fowarding these awards out all week.
Thanks, you all made my day!

Another year

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

When I first met Jon, we were just a couple of high school kids.

To me he was just a nice boy.

I never thought then that he'd be the father to my 5 children, or the guy who gave up his dream job because he couldn't think of being away from us 3 weeks out of the month.

I was only thinking of getting my homecoming dress and coordinating it with his outfit.

I never thought then that he'd be the one to, without complaint, run to the store anytime the kids (or I) got a craving for a treat. Or every night, gather the kids around him on the bed and read stories until he fell asleep.

I was only thinking of seeing him in the halls between classes and watching him play football at the stadium.

I never thought then that he'd be the one I lay next to every night and talk with face to face about our day, plans for tomorrow or reminisce of our teenage years together.

I am thankful that we get to spend his Happy Birthdays with him, forever.

Happy Birthday to my love.

High-heeled pain

Monday, July 19, 2010

"We conclude that long-term use of high heeled shoes induces shortening of the [calf] muscle fascicles and increases [Achilles' tendon] stiffness, reducing the ankle's active range of motion," the researchers wrote in the Journal of Experimental Biology.

When I was little, I remember my mom always wearing skirts and never leaving the house without her red lipstick and high heels. As time went on, she traded in her heels for tennis shoes and skirts became slacks. She never wore jeans until later in life.

I used to dress up when I went anywhere but now it seems that I've fallen into the same mode; foregoing fashion for comfort. I think it's because I don't work in an environment anymore which kept me out meeting with new prospects and a client base. And I am constantly involved with kids' activities and working around the house and cleaning up little mishaps...

I still don't wear tennis shoes out side of the house much. I reserve them for work and exercise but I still feel like I have clown feet when I wear them. Isn't there a high heeled tennis shoe??

So where do you stand: (pun completely intended) Heels or flats?

On a side note...

Photo courtesy of the Washington Post

I love weird roadside attractions, don't you?

RIP shoe tree...

BOISE, Idaho U.S. Forest Service officials in northern Idaho said the rubber-soled decorations that made the “shoe tree” a beloved Priest River landmark also helped fuel its demise.

Tourists and locals since the 1940s have dressed the tree with hundreds of pairs of shoes, nailing sneakers to its trunk and hanging work boots from its branches.

Firefighters found the tree engulfed in flames late Thursday, and the blaze was difficult to extinguish because the sizable cedar was covered in melted shoe rubber.

Officials have long discouraged people from adding shoes to the tree, which had become a roadside attraction featured on various travel websites.


Thursday, July 15, 2010

I am already tired of hearing the Mel Gibson tapes. Only because he sounds like such a heaving psychopath. It's disturbing to hear. Whether or not she was bating him isn't the issue. His problems with drinking and racist tirades are well documented but domestic violence? That will be an all-time low if proven. He basically admitted it already. Her dentist and son are testifying to witnessing some of the fights. What is so surprising is that in a current poll, 50% of Americans will continue to see his movies - if he has a career left. It's time he gets some serious help and put an end to his alcohol use.

On to Levi and Bristol. Anytime a family can find its way back together is something that I am all for. Maybe Levi realized that he is really just a small town guy and not the Hollywood type who enjoyed those hangers-on that he was attracting. Maybe they've matured some. They've had to with all of the media attention surrounding them, welcomed or not. Whatever the reasons, their family deserves a shot at happiness. I hope they are mature enough to work it out.

I can understand The Palin's hesitation, but forgiveness is possible. Just take last night's ESPY awards for example, there was an inspiring story about forgiveness on the Thomas and Becker families and that is some major forgiveness. It has to be one of the hardest things to forgive.

Go here for that fantastic story. It's 14 minutes you don't want to miss.

What do you think?

In defense

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

The other day an old friend found me on Facebook. I was really surprised. Just a few weeks ago I found his wedding announcement from years ago and wondered how life had turned out for him. We were friends when I was 17 and he was a few years older. He asked me out a few times and although he was cute, I was not interested. Especially after he tried to swallow my ear while we were watching a movie. I hated that.

Jon wanted to see this guy so I showed him and he got a kick out of my friend. I remarked how he didn't look anything like he did then. And to be honest, I'm painfully aware at how I've changed. But him, I would not have recognized if I were sitting next to him now. Except that if he tried to swallow my ear, I would know who it was...

Jon kept referring to this guy as my "boyfriend."

"He's wasn't my boyfriend!" I said defending myself as if speaking to teasing, older brothers.

He was just having too much fun at my expense I thought.
So while he was showering before work that day, I walked in to the bathroom.
Jon asked "Who is it?" but I didn't say anything and just went over and flushed the toilet.
He began to laugh as the water turned ice cold then scorching hot.


linking to Never growing old

"Not my child"

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Have you ever heard that from someone? Or maybe said it yourself?

As I was picking up my second grader from school, she entered the car with a pair of glasses in her hand. I looked at them and asked whose they were and wondered why we had them. I was told a friend let her borrow them because she did poorly on an eye test. I confiscated the glasses and set them aside, forgetting about them amidst the flurry of activity.

As soon as we returned home, my child went to take a nap which wasn't uncommon. She called me to her room and said that she "had a bad feeling in her chest." I was concerned because we had some prior medical issues with her heart but the check-ups always turned out fine. Then the phone rang and it was the school nurse telling me that my child was seen at the nurse's office. The same complaints were heard and she told me that feelings of anxiety and impending doom can be common with heart patients. It's often right before something happens, like a sixth sense.. And then she went on to tell me that she flunked her eye test and was moved to the front of the class because she was having a hard time seeing the board.

Strange I thought, she had never exhibited difficulties in seeing before. So I called the eye Dr. and they could see her that day. During all of this, she became more worried and felt sick. She kept complaining of a stomach ache and that bad feeling in her chest wasn't going way.

She said she felt bad but didn't want to talk about it yet.

I was beginning to put some things together and thought I had better call the teacher. Just as I was about to call her, she called me and asked if my child had worn prescription glasses. I told her that strangely enough we were going to the eye Dr. because of this failed eye test. She proceeded to tell me that my child stole some one's glasses and was wearing them in class. I couldn't believe what I was hearing but I said it all made sense now. After we laughed about a few things, I assured her I was going to handle it.
Insert evil laughter.

On the way to the eye doc, I said that now was the time to be honest. This lesson was going to cost me 50.00 dollars. Impending doom on its way. But the anticipation of having her very own glasses was too exciting for her and maybe, just maybe, this was working out! .

So we got the eye test done and my child was beaming. There was nothing of concern about her eyes except for the fact that she was in need of some attention. I felt bad about that part. It did seem like she always got the short end of the stick and I would change that and make things better but not before dealing with the lying and stealing.

The Dr. asked if I wanted to do a further test. It wasn't covered under insurance but it would be a thorough exam. He reminded me that her eyes would be sensitive and she'd have to wear these glasses for a few hours, holding them up for us to see.

Yes! That's just what I needed to teach this lesson. I love being a parent! Mwah haha...

My child said no. I said "Let's do it." Again, insert evil laughter here.

So we did and she came out of the exam room looking all goofy, in her roll-up temporary "glasses." She was so cute though, you almost felt sorry for her.
She saw me and started to take them off.

I said, "No, you'll hurt your eyes!"

She was trying to keep from crying. I was trying to keep from laughing.

I "suddenly" remembered that I had errands to run that day so we made a stop to Target. She insisted she was going to stay in the car. At 100 degrees outside I told her she'd burn up so she had to come inside. She started to remove the glasses but I reminded her that the light would hurt her eyes so she had to keep them on. Reluctantly, she came inside and I paraded her all over with those things. The next stops were to Ross and Michael's, making it a point to wave to all of the people we saw from school. We wouldn't want anyone thinking we're anti-social now, would we?

After that, the letter to her teacher, the girl and her parents wasn't such a difficult thing to do.

Last night, I found those glasses in a box and had Blair put them on and walk into the next room to show everyone. We all laughed and the guilty party just shook her head. Jon and I cracked up at reliving the lesson learned and how I took her all over town. More evil laughter. Payback hurts.

And then Jon reminded that when I am old and need my diaper changed, she won't be willing to do it. She shook her head in agreement.

Payback hurts.

Is it bad...

Monday, July 12, 2010

that the kids wanted Kettle corn but we didn't have any so I just made regular popcorn and sprinkled sugar on it?

that I just sucked up some little toys in the vacuum because I was too lazy to bend down and pick them up? I mean, does Polly Pocket really need all of those rubber clothes??

that I want to reach through the computer and slap the girl that has been having an affair with my friend's husband? She says her "favorite book is the Bible" and that she's "so blessed" to have a "new family!" Oh, Excuse me while I gag.

that if and when I see said friend's husband, I'll want to kick him where it counts? I didn't think so...

that I dream of spending my lottery winnings and how much I would give my friends and family even though I don't play the lottery?

that my daughter and I made a McDonald's french fry run in the middle of the night?

that the raspberry plant someone gave me died and I want to get another so they won't know I killed it?

that I wish I could twitch my nose like on "Bewitched" or blink like Jeannie so my house would be clean? I guess it's not going to clean itself so I had better go!

Happy Monday ya'll~

Thrift is not a four letter word

Friday, July 9, 2010

I'm back for another installment of thrifting finds.
But first, a big shout out to Meg from A Little Knick Knack for letting me guest post earlier this week. It was a re-post of my haggling tips for flea market and antique shopping. I have more tips but too much for a blog post since I could write a whole article. I just gave myself an idea...anyway, you can see that post here. Thanks Meg!

Now on to the goods!

It's been a little while since I have gone thrift shopping. I went with the specific task of finding an old, ugly light that I need for a DIY project. The time I don't need it, I see a bunch of them. This time, nothing. I guess I'll have to make another trip.

Two white candle holders for .97 cents each. Love the form.

A basket to hold my fabric, $2.00. I really like its washed out color.

New Target frames for $1.99 each.

Brown transfer ware for $1.00 and worth much, much more which is one of the great things about thrift shops!

A silver metal bowl for .49 cents. Really? I had to take it for that price even though I had no idea what I was going to do with it. I had a bag of decorative balls I bought at IKEA with the exception of the blue colored one. That is actually a K-Mart purchase. So there they sit. I like the combination of rough and smooth textures.

So for a total of around $9.50, I have a few new-to-me decorative items for my home. There are good deals and interesting items out there. Go find some and let me know how it goes!

Any guesses on my favorite find of the day?

linking to

Chic on a shoestring decorating

Shabby Nest

AVision to Remember

It's a hodgepodge life

Cooling off

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Are you experiencing a heat wave in your neck of the woods?
Well, there's nothing like cooling off with a hose and a blow-up shark waterslide!

My kids would rather use it as a drinking fountain but whatever works.

Happy summer!

On disciplining others

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A picture of Charley totally unrelated to this post.
I just like it.

Recently I was in a store in the middle of the toy aisle. While looking around and as my kids asked for every thing they saw, I kept hearing a little girl say to whom I presumed was her brother, to "stop it." As she repeated this her voice was accentuated with a whine.

Her verbal pleas became heightened and she was crying, asking him to stop.

I looked over and saw that he was punching her. Not just a soft push like siblings can do, but a real closed-fist punch.

I have no patience for this kind of thing.

I could see the kids down the aisle but didn't see any parents. They continued to fight, or I should say, he continued to punch.

So, I sauntered a bit closer and gave the much older and bigger brother a stare and raised my eyebrows at him. He looked at me and scooted away from his little sister.

I went back to shopping and the cries started up again. I looked over and he was back at it. I could see in my peripheral vision that he was looking around to see if anyone saw. There were still no parents around so I went back to the kid and said,

"Do you hear her telling you to stop?!"


"Then please STOP." I said.

The little girl cried, "Yeah, stop it. It hurts."

He just shrugged his shoulders and slumped back down and played with toys that weren't packaged.

I went back to shopping but I would occasionally look up to see if they were still there. I caught him a few times as he was trying to slap her. He stopped mid-way when he caught my eye and reluctantly brought his arm down. The girl kept flinching every time he moved.

A little while later as I was in the check-out line, they ended up behind me. The girl was trying to tell her mother what he was doing. She wasn't paying attention and blew her off when she said, "Well, quit bugging him" like it was her fault.

Unfortunately that may be the reality of that home.

In my mom's generation and heritage, it was OK to discipline other's children. Maybe not every one's but certainly in the neighborhood. I remember my grandma yelling some thing at kids on her street and they ran away. Then I saw the mother of the kids bring them back to my grandma and say, "Apologize to Mrs. Hernandez for having to yell at you! You better behave from now on!"

Before every school year or the start of a new class at church, we tell the teachers that we won't be offended if they have to discipline our kids. Or they are always free to come and get us if they are disruptive and we'll handle it. We will never be offended.
I know, love and trust every one that teaches our kids so I know they'll be fair. We don't catch all of the things they do but if and when we do, we are quick to act. We have one that can quickly get out of control so we have to always be on our toes. It's just the nature of bi-polar disorder and it is so hard.

I know it's a touchy subject but my questions are...

How do you feel about disciplining other people's children?

Do you feel more or less comfortable if they are your friends?

Do you do it at all? Do you mind if it's done to yours with fairness?


linking to Take it from me

Thanks, Francis

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Our iconic anthem, "The Star Spangled Banner," is arguably one of the most difficult songs to sing. I'm not even a singer and I know that its two, is it two?, octave range is tough. You only have to look at a televised sporting event to see that this is true. Even some of the best singers in the country have mangled it's tune, leaving others to play it safe and lip sync in front of thousands at a stadium.
And don't even get me started on people who can't sing and still tried...

This anthem stirs up emotion and leaves us with swelled pride. Pride in a country that tries its best. Even when we are not all on the same page or unhappy with situations in the United States, we can count on that song to unite us, even if for a moment. I wonder if Francis Scott Key knew that he penned emotions that night which would follow us through all of these years?

It's words have always misted my eyes.
The fourth verse, one of my favorites, always causes that.
I do love this country of mine...

O! thus be it ever, when free men shall stand
Between their loved home and the war's desolation!
Blest with victory and peace, may the heav'n rescued land
Praise the Power that hath made and preserved us a nation.
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto: "In God is our trust."
And the star-spangled banner in triumph shall wave
O'er the land of the free and the home of the brave!

Do you have a favorite patriotic song?

Have a safe and Happy 4Th of July! Fireworks oh yeah!!