Friday, January 30, 2009

Awful ...

A really good friend of our family was arrested on horrible, awful, totally life changing charges this week. I feel sick to my stomach; and just want to cry for him.

Mike - please know that our thoughts and prayers are with you during this horrible ordeal.

I don't believe that the charges are true. I believe that what he was accused of did happen; but I do not believe that it was done by Mike.

May God be with the family, may the full truth be revealed to those who need to know, and may mercy and comfort be will all the parties involved.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

It's been a week

... since I last posted anything.

Life has been busy. I hope life is treating you and yours well, and that you are staying warm and dry.

Happy Thursday!

Thursday, January 22, 2009


This was sent to me by my mom, and I knew it needed to be on my blog:

The Sack Lunches

I put my carry-on in the luggage compartment and sat down in my assigned seat.
It was going to be a long flight. "I'm glad I have a good book to read. Perhaps I will get a short nap,' I thought.

Just before take-off, a line of soldiers came down the aisle and filled all the vacant seats, totally surrounding me. I decided to start a conversation. 'Where are you headed?' I asked the soldier seated nearest to me. 'Chicago - to Great Lakes Base. We'll be there for two weeks for special training, and then we're being deployed to Iraq.'

After flying for about an hour, an announcement was made that sack lunches were available for five dollars. It would be several hours before we reached Chicago, and I quickly decided a lunch would help pass the time. As I reached for my wallet, I overheard soldier ask his buddy if he planned to buy lunch. 'No, that seems like a lot of money for just a sack lunch. Probably wouldn't be worth five bucks. I'll wait till we get to Chicago.' His friend agreed.

I looked around at the other soldiers. None were buying lunch. I walked to the back of the plane and handed the flight attendant a fifty dollar bill.'Take a lunch to all those soldiers.'

She grabbed my arms and squeezed tightly. Her eyes wet with tears, she thanked me. 'My son was a soldier in Iraq; it's almost like you are doing it for him.'

Picking up ten sacks, she headed up the aisle to where the soldiers were seated. She stopped at my seat and asked, 'Which do you like best - beef or chicken?' 'Chicken,' I replied, wondering why she asked. She turned and went to the front of plane, returning a minute later with a dinner plate from first class. 'This is your thanks.'

After we finished eating, I went again to the back of the plane, heading for the rest room. A man stopped me. 'I saw what you did. I want to be part of it. Here, take this.' He handed me twenty-five dollars.

Soon after I returned to my seat, I saw the Flight Captain coming down the aisle, looking at the aisle numbers as he walked, I hoped he was not looking for me, but noticed he was looking at the numbers only on my side of the plane. When he got to my row he stopped, smiled, held out his hand, an said,'I want to shake your hand.' Quickly unfastening my seatbelt I stood and took the Captain's hand. With a booming voice he said, 'I was a soldier and I was a military pilot. Once, someone bought me a lunch. It was an act of kindness I never forgot.' I was embarrassed when applause was heard fromall of the passengers.

Later I walked to the front of the plane so I could stretch my legs. A man who was seated about six rows in front of me reached out his hand, wanting to shake mine. He left another twenty-five dollars in my palm.

When we landed in Chicago I gathered my belongings and started to deplane. Waiting just inside the airplane door was a man who stopped me, put something in my shirt pocket, turned, and walked away without saying a word. Another twenty-five dollars!

Upon entering the terminal, I saw the soldiers gathering for their trip to the base. I walked over to them and handed them seventy-five dollars. 'It will take you some time to reach the base. It will be about time for asandwich. God Bless You.'

Ten young men left that flight feeling the love and respect of their fellow travelers.

As I walked briskly to my car, I whispered a prayer for their safe return.

These soldiers were giving their all for our country. I could only give them a couple of meals. It seemed so little...

A veteran is someone who, at one point in his life wrote a blank check made payable to 'The United States of America ' for an amount of 'up to and including my life.' That is Honor, and there are way too many people in this country who no longer understand it.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

I am

.... Proud to be an American!

Yes, today is historic in that it is a Presidential Inauguration day; and it is historic as our first African American president is being sworn in.

But whether our new president is African American, or made of Popsicle sticks and covered with green felt and pink dots really does not matter to me. What matters to me is whether our president can shepard this country through troubled times using respect and dignity.

What matters to me is that our freedom remains part and parcel of each and every American, and that all people are treated with respect, dignity and understanding, and that we all learn to "get along" side by side, accepting each person for who they are.

What matters to me is freedom of speech and the belief that my child will have a future to look forward to. A future where she continues to have the right to work hard in school to prepare for her future, and to attend the best college possible to help her reach her goals and dreams.

What matters to me is the future. A future where we can all continue to make our own choices, and live our lifes.

What matters to me is that I am an American. I have the freedom to live my life with honesty, respect and spirituality. I have the freedom to be me, and that is a treasure I often take for granted.

Congratulations to our 44th president; Barack Obama

May God bless us with a president who guides his country with pride and respect.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The missing piece ...

..... I spent the weekend rounding up old photos.

Like others, I want to be able to scan the photos and add a few choice ones to my facebook. This weekend I was able to locate most of my K - 6 grade class photos, but I am missing 5th grade.

I know that I went to the fifth grade, and I know that I attended John Cabrillo Elementary School. Can I tell you who my teacher was? No. Can I tell you anything about that year? No.

This disturbs me. If you know me; you know that I have a great gift: instant recall of most every fact of my life - and even those random things that everyone else forgets. Everyone has a gift, and each gift is a special treasure that helps define the person you are.

My gift is recall - I have a photographic memory with almost instant recall of names, faces, phone numbers, dates, times, seasons, conversations, what people wore, who they hung out with... I can usually recall it all.

But, fifth grade is a blank.

Once I post all the photos - maybe Andrea (or Shanon, or Tami) will be able fill in the blank for me. We went to school together. We may have even been in the same class together.

I do believe that 5th grade is the year that Leslie Schantz and her family returned to Sacramento from a mission in Indonesia. I didn't know Leslie before, but I remember her being the new girl at school, and being intrigued by her family. They lived just up the street from me, and she and I became friends. She was a really nice girl. I remember her family eventually moved to Woodland, and I went to her house several times, even spending the night.

Although I remember Leslie, I can not recall much more about 5th grade.

I hope I can fill that blank spot - I wonder what else I do not recall about that year? Is that the year I am thinking it was? The year I punished my dad and refused to speak with him?

Maybe that is why I don't have perfect recall - only pieces and parts, but not enough to really be of any substance.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

37 ODD Things about you!

Learn 37 things about your friends, and let them learn 37 things about you!

Send back to me and forward to friends!!

" Do You Think These Are Really Odd?"

1. Do you like blue cheese?
I love it, but it gives me fierce migraines, so I can't eat it.

2. Have you ever smoked?
Nope - can't stand it!!

4. What flavor of Kool Aid was your favorite?
It's a 3 way tie: Orange, Grape or Cherry

5. Do you get nervous before doctor appointments?
Yes. I hate going to the doctors.

6. What do you think of hot dogs?
I love 'em! (Parker's Hot Dogs are the BEST!)

7. Favorite Christmas movie?
National Lampoon's Christmas with Chevy Chase
(it was one of the first dates Russ and I went on 19 years ago!)

8. What do you prefer to drink in the morning?
Honestly, Icy cold Coca-Cola from Mc Donald's

9. Can you do pushups?
I can, but I don't

10. What's your favorite piece of jewelry?
My wedding rings

11. Favorite hobby/s:
spending time with my family and friends,
walking in the rain

12. Do you have A.D.D.?
Some days I certainly think I do

13. Do you wear glasses/contacts?
Glasses since I was 9.
Tried contacts in high school - didn't work out so well for me.
(However, I've got a great story about contacts, my Rainbow installation, and my dad.)

14. Middle name?

15. Name 3 thoughts at this exact moment:
I hope Manda is safe as she drives through the construction at Cirby and Riverside;
It's a beautiful day;
Lunch with Jill and Pegg was fun.

16. Name 3 drinks you regularly drink?
cran-apple juice

17. Current worry?
The economy and it's far reaching ripple effect

18. What you hate right now?
The economy

19. Favorite place to be?
LOTS of favorites --- depends on my mood.
I love anywhere I can just enjoy life at the moment that I am in.

20. Where would you like to go?

21. What is your favorite candy?
Heath Bar

22. Name three people who will complete this?

23. Do you own slippers?
Yes they are bright pink and do a soothing massage

24. What shirt are you wearing?
Red, black, white, pink and silver stripe - with 3/4 length sleeves and a little collar

25. Do you like sleeping on satin sheets?
Nope! I am a flannel girl

26. Can you whistle?
Not nearly as good as Michelle can

27. Favorite color?
Purple, red, blue, celery green (sorry, I can't decide.)

28. Would you like to be a pirate?
Nope. I have no desire to be at sea

29. What songs do you sing in the shower?
The neighborhood dogs passed a law that prevents me from singing ever. Hurts their ears.

30. Favorite girls names?

31. Favorite boys names?

32. What's in your pocket right now?

33. Last thing that made you laugh?
Reading Samantha's responses

34. What vehicles do you drive?
Ford Freestyle
Ford Focus
(by the way Samantha - as much as I love you - I can not be your Robin in the Batmobile.)

35. Worst injury you've ever had?
Whip-lash from a car accident 16 years ago

36. Do you love where you live?
As a matter of fact, I do!

37. How many TVs do you have in your house?
Let's see: I in the living room,
one in Manda's,
one in our bedroom,
and I think Russ has 3 in the garage.
So 6.
That is 5 too many.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Twilight and New Moon

I was on Quilt Nut Creations blog this morning - looking at her awesome wordless Wednesday when I spotted the coolest countdown! (ya, it's already on my blog. I HAD to have it.)

Like millions of others around the world, I too am a big fan of Stephenie Meyer's Twilight series.

It took me about 4 days to read Twilight - and by then I could not wait to see how the story line developed and if Bella became one of the cool, un-dead ones. I finished the other 3 books in less than a week. Loved them!!!

We've seen Twilight twice at the theater. If you know me, you know that is highly unusual. I rarely go see a movie once, let alone twice. But - I have to admit, I'd be more than willing to go a third time.

You can get your own count down for New Moon by visiting: His Golden Eyes a Twilight Fansite.

And by the way - in case you are like me and did not already know, according to Stephenie Meyer's website TWILIGHT is being released to DVD on March 21 !!! (and, now you know what I would be delighted to receive as a belated birthday present!)

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


What do the following items have in common:

brillo pads
sand paper
poison ivy
chicken pox


They are all either scratchy or itchy, like my throat.

Oh well, I think it is just the weather that is causing my throat to feel miserable.
Personally, I feel really good today - a lil sore from Wii bowling, tennis and golf, and a lil sleep deprived from the residual of the migraine I had yesterday, but other than that, it is a really good day.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, January 12, 2009

I think I am getting old

.... or is it just that I am getting a cold?

I had so many plans for this weekend; and I managed not to get most of them done.

Friday night was fun, I was at Tina's house for GNO. We ate wonderful, warm and yummy taco soup, played bunco and laughed until our sides hurt.

Of course, I didn't tell anyone that as I was walking up her really dark driveway I tripped in one of those low, uneven and totally unseen spots that cause you to almost drop everything you have in your hands so you don't fall to the ground. Oh, yeah --- did I mention I was in heels as I practiced that klutz move of slightly spraining my ankle? Yeah. Nice.

I woke Saturday to a slight (barely noticeable) fever and sore throat. Hmmm... sore throat could be from all the laughter the night before, and leaving the heater running all night. Tends to dry me out like a stale piece of bread.

By Saturday afternoon I was sniffly and feeling stiff and sore all over. But, I figured that was from the cold air and lack of exercise, or maybe from my klutz move in Tina's driveway the night before.

Russ, Manda and I played Wii on Saturday night for a few hours. Manda is really good at tennis, she frequently beats Russ and I. About midnight I drank a warm cup of lemon and honey and went to bed.

Sunday I woke tired and restless, but felt better after a hot shower. I'll admit to using all the hot water in the tank. My sniffles are not as bad as they were on Saturday, but I still feel run down and stiff and sore.

Manda and I spent part of the afternoon relaxing with Marina and playing catch. Marina's parents and children were gone for the day, and Rini does not like to be home alone. That cute, totally sweet and cuddly yellow lab has me wrapped around her sweet lil tail. We must have played catch for 2 1/2 hours.

I didn't sleep well at all last night. My head is pounding (is it a full moon?) and I felt hot and restless all night. My throat is scratchy and dry.

Ugh ... hopefully this head ache and sore throat will go away. I have better things to do with my time than get sick.

Off to drink a ton of water and see if I can find a better attitude. I feel pretty whiny this morning.

A challenge from Tanya (Sunday Baker)

Tanya who writes Sunday Baker is an amazing woman who inspires others with her warmth and love of family. Tanya is always sharing great ideas, and her latest idea was to challenge her readers to use the items in our pantry.

This is my first response to her challenge:


After reading your Pantry Challenge, I could not resist going home and seeing what I could make using only the contents of my pantry, freezer and refrigerator.

Here is what I have come up with so far:

Saturday Morning Breakfast:

Corn Bread pancakes.
Honey and dill butter

Peaches and apricots baked with a dash of cinnamon and 1/2 cup of craisins

Saturday Lunch:

Baked bell peppers filled with Tuna salad with olives, sweet pickle relish, grated cheddar cheese and fresh chopped red onion.

Saturday dinner:

1 large bag Elbow macaroni
2 pounds frozen ground beef
1 large can Cream of Mushroom soup
1 small can Cream of Celery soup
1 small package frozen carrots
4 stalks of fresh celery chopped
3 cups grated sharp cheedar cheese

boil pasta until tender, but not all the way cooked

brown ground beef,

add both cans of soup to ground beef and 2 cups of milk, bring to a boil.

add frozen carrots and fresh chopped celery

combine ground beef mixuture and macaroni in baking dish, mix in 1/2 of the grated sharp cheddar. Stir until mixed evenly.

use rest of sharp cheddar on top of casserole.

Bake 45 minutes at 350*

serve with a fresh green salad.

Sunday breakfast:

2 cans Comstock brand cherries
2 cans Comstock brand apples
(like you would use for pies, cobblers)
3 cups oats Quaker is my favorite)
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons cinnamon
1/4 brown sugar
1 tablespoon melted butter
small container vanilla yogurt

place canned fruit in baking dish and lighly mix together.

combine dry ingredients in small mixing bowl, sprinkle across the top of the fruit mixture

drizzle melted butter over the top of the dry ingredients

bake at 325* for 25 minutes

Served warm with a few spoonfuls of vanilla yogurt.

Thanks for this challenge! It should be fun to continue to use the contents of my pantry!

I did not go to the store at all this weekend, it was great to just use what we had on hand.

Friday, January 9, 2009


While talking about HIPPA and FTC Red Flag Rules of compliance today one of my co-workers recalled listening to this a few years ago:

Sorry I could not embed it into this post, but it is totally worth clicking on.

Our pets are micro-chipped, and people can be located through the GPS tracking on their cell phones ...... is this really so far off in our futures?


If you ever get the chance; this is one show I highly recommend you taking the time to experience and enjoy.

I tried to post the video from the site, but my blogger html was having issues with it.

Amanda and I had the pleasure of seeing this wonderful percussion delight the day after Christmas. We went with a group of fun loving people from Cast and Company Dance Alliance. Miss Lisa organized the field trip for us, and secured us fantastic seats.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

An Old Farmer's Advice

* Your fences need to be horse-high, pig-tight, and bull-strong.

* Keep skunks and bankers and lawyers at a distance.

* Life is simpler when you plow around the stump.
* A bumble bee is considerably faster than a John Deere tractor.

* Words that soak into your ears are whispered...not yelled.

* Meanness don't jus' happen overnight.

* Forgive your enemies. It messes up their heads.

* Do not corner something that you know is meaner than you.

* It don't take a very big person to carry a grudge.

* You cannot unsay a cruel word.

* Every path has a few puddles.

* When you wallow with pigs, expect to get dirty.

* The best sermons are lived, not preached.

* Most of the stuff people worry about ain 't never gonna happen, anyway.

* Don't judge folks by their relatives.

* Remember that silence is sometimes the best answer.

* Live a good, honorable life.

* Don't interfere with somethin' that ain't botherin' you none.

* If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop diggin'.

* Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.

*The biggest troublemaker you'll probably ever have to deal with,
watches you from the mirror every mornin'."

* Always drink upstream from the herd.

* Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment.

* Lettin' the cat outta the bag is a whole lot easier than puttin' it back in.

* If you get to thinkin' you're a person of some influence, try orderin' somebody else's dog around.

* Live simply. Love generously. Care deeply. Speak kindly.

*Leave the rest to God.

Christmas, Cousins and Twilight

On Wednesday night Manda and I are going to treat ourselves to seeing Twilight again! We are both so excited. We are going with Jessica and Casey after I get off of work.

It's nice to have the cousins interacting together again. Jessica is 9 years older than Manda, so it has been awhile since they have "hung out" together. Manda has always looked up to Jessica.

On Christmas Day after we opened presents at my mother - in - law's house we all went to Bob and Suzette's to enjoy family time and so that we could share the work and fun of getting the turkey in the oven. (Nothing says family like sharing the kitchen!)

Jessica and Casey had gotten their Wii for Christmas, and they invited Manda to join in the fun. Manda was thrilled to be included with them. She adores Jessica and Casey is a nice guy, with a warm and friendly personality (shhh... don't tell Jessica, but we think she and Casey are adorable together and hope he'll become an official part of the family in the not too distant future!)

Jessica had not had the time or energy to read Twilight yet. She received the entire series for Christmas and has been reading avidly trying to get through Twilight so she could see the epic theater release. So - she finished over the weekend, and we are all going to the movies.

I can't wait to see it again. Manda and I loved it the first time.

Here is a fun article I found about Twilight:

'Twilight': How Do You Like the Cast?

See the work that led Robert Pattinson, Kristen Stewart, Taylor Lautner, and the others bringing Stephenie Meyer's characters to life to these roles; are they your choices?

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

I think this might make a few people laugh

One of the guys I work with knows I am a blogger. He saw this clip and knew I'd have to have it on my blog today.

I'll admit, I found it very funny. There are some who probably won't:

Hope you got a Tuesday morning chuckle!

Pitter Patter ....

I was woken by the pitter patter of tiny feet racing across the bed this morning ....

.... the cats were wide awake, bright eyed & ready for cat playtime well before the alarm went off at 5:00 a. m.

It's a good thing they are cute. Harvest is the 6 month old kitten, and she is an instigator. She loves to chase Harley and will do anything she can to get his full attention. This morning she was launching her little adorable torti self off of anything higher than Harley, and was attempting to land on top of him.

Harley (being the much older, more mature cat that he is) tried to ignore Harvest's somewhat annoying antics, but he finally had to admit defeat and engage in playtime with her. The two of them were racing throughout the house at full speed, pausing only long enough to shift their direction of travel, or play hide and seek - and then of course they would to pounce upon each other in a hilarious version of cat WWF.

I usually have to intervene when Harley makes Harvest cry out. But, honestly, Princess PITA - Lil Miss Harvest is THE instigator and she deserves to have Harley put her in her place. Harley is just so much bigger than her, I worry about Harley hurting her. However, when Harvest sneaks up on him, grabs his long black tail with both of her tiny front paws and bites him as hard as she can, she is on her own.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy Monday!

Yes, today is Monday and I can not help but be a bit excited. Why? Because Manda goes back to school today.

No - I don't hate my child and wish to see less of her. Quite the opposite. I love our teenager. She is pretty darn well rounded, has a great sense of humor and is very loving. But - she is a "routine" kid and being off of her normal routine puts the whole house is chaos.

So the alarm went off at 5:00 am, and normalcy prevails!

Happy 2009. Better go do my hair and get ready for work.

Have a great day.