Friday, May 30, 2008

You ask...I'll answer Pt. 4

Weirdest dream you ever had (that you can share on the internet)!
My scariest dream was a combo of Indiana Jones & another super scary movie. I used to dream about myself being kidnapped by a cult, then lowered down to a firey pit while all the members chanted at the top of the pit. They were staring down at me, watching me burn. I would somehow escape but then be chased around an old, deserted town by a man w/ a chain saw. Oh yeah, Texas Chainsaw Massacre.

The time you laughed the hardest.
I had a friend named Molly who, when we got together, it's ridiculously funny. We laugh nonstop...It was my goal to make her wheez...Those times are countless.

But the biggest laugh was probably at Costco in 1997. My Mom & I were shopping for disposable cameras for my wedding. (Don't laugh, it WAS the 90's)

She spotted some Polaroid cameras on sale for $40. She was big into her Mary Kay business at that time and thought some before & after pics would be fun. She spotted the film that was $11 bucks a package. She said "Wow - that's expensive. I wonder how much it costs to get developed?" I about peed my pants laughing "Uh,'s a Polaroid. You don't develop it." Classic.

Favorite Cleaning product and why it's so great.

I love Windex multi surface. I do my windows once a week so I can smell Windex. I think vinegar is a more natural substance to use. Besides it does so much, it cuts down on the clutter in my cleaning closet!

I also love Summit foaming garbage disposal cleaner. This stuff is awesome! I do it once a week just as preventative maintenence. It comes in a little packet that you shove in your disposal and about a minute later.....clean!

If you had another child what would their name be and why? A boy or girl?
My hubby used to want a boy and name him Bryce. I wanted the name Cole, it was my Grandma's maiden name. I would want another girl and probably go w/ something like Cadence or Kamber, or Chloe or Camel or Couch....something along those lines.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

My current fav. song

This entire CD is kick butt, but I really love this song. Beautiful. Even though there's no vid...listen to the song.

Throwback Thursday

This has been so much fun, although I'm behind on scanning pics that don't include any other friends. I certainly don't want them angry at me for posting their pic on the net!

This is a pic of my Mom & I in our backyard. Summer of 1977. She made all my fancy dresses, this one was pretty cute!

If you participate in Throwback Thursday, leave me a comment so I can check out your pic!

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Which TV Mom are you?

Which TV Mom Are You

Mandy, your TV Mom is Claire Huxtable
You are Claire Huxtable from The Cosby Show. You have high expectations for your children, just like you have high expectations for yourself. You've probably got your own life and your own career, but nothing is more fun than spending time with your family. You may be a professional woman, but you enjoy getting silly with the kids sometimes.You want good kids, but you also want them to be successful, smart individuals who can speak their minds — as long as they do so respectfully. While you enjoy being the kind of mom that your kids can come to with a problem, you are not afraid to set them straight when they're acting badly. When it comes to discipline, you try treat your kids like adults, talking calmly and coolly. And that's ultimately why they're going to grow up with such unwavering respect for you — as both a mother and a successful person.

All except I'm not a professional Mom & I get silly w/ my kids daily!!!

Don't you hate it when...

I love it when I meet someone new, that could possibly be a good friend. Kids the same age, similar interests, same church etc.

I hate it when that person seems to put me down because:

A. I'm not IN the ministry.
B. I haven't been attending as long as they have
C. They know the Bible way better than I do, and they are quick to point that small fact out.
D. I'm not consistent w/ my prayer and they make sure I know that THEY are.
E. They scoff because I've had relationships before I was married.

I am an honest, open, caring, growing woman. Sorry folks, I'm not perfect. Nor do I claim to be. That would blasphemy you see...I'm NOT Jesus.

Tell us something that drives you crazy or makes you angry...

You ask...I'll answer Pt. 3

World's Greatest Mommy has officially been renamed World's Greates Blog Question Asker.

Do you and your husband have a song?

Yes. Remember though, that we are hillbillies that have been transplanted to the suburbs. It's George Strait I Cross My Heart. =)

What was the name of your first pet? (That you remember)

My first dog was a basset hound name Shanendoah's Rainbow Girl (show name) Rainbow for short. I used to show her in local dog shows. She always won longest ears, saddest eyes...all of the good wins for a basset!

The ultimate gift someone could give you would be what?

My hubby - a Lotus. A friend - a lunch date. Nothing like getting out and having some quiet time to chat.

If someone were going to write a movie about your life, what songs would be on the soundtrack?

Must have tons of Prince...Purple Rain, Little Red Corvette, Raspberry Beret, Call my Name, Money don't Matter...the list goes on & on as far as Prince is concerned. Must also include a lot of Chris Ledoux and a TON of Beatles songs. A few from Manhatten Transfer, Tom Jones, Barry Manilow & Tony Bennett. My movie would be a musical...LOVE music.

3 best moments of your life...what and why?

1. Getting married - duh
2. Having the girls - super duh
3. My Mom dying. I know that sounds weird, but I had a chance to see what I was made of that day. And then to gain a whole new life & perspective was life changing. I was closer to God during that time than I have ever been. My marriage changed that day, my parenting changed that day...all for the better.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Blogger Small Group

This week's reading was James Chapter 5. I'm not sure why, but I haven't been good about reading the scriptures and then studying them for the week...I think I'm suffering from a mid-year crisis. Kids out of school, tons of activities outside of the house, lessons galore...bear w/ me.

The part of James 5 that hit me the most is The Prayer of Faith.

"Is any one of you in trouble? He should pray. Is anyone happy? Let him sing songs of praise."

First of all, I am the piss poorest example of this. I'm definately all about praying when I'm in a slump. I'm also great about praising when things are going fabulously. What I'm not good about is the other 80% of my life. The norm, mundane, day in & day out bull honky that IS my life...I'm horrible at praising / prayer during that time.

Doesn't the bible also say the if we ask, it will be given to us (if it's God's will of course)? But doesn't that require some effort on my part? Not only to ask, but to believe that he will do it and also believe that he CAN do it?

I'm so guilty of praying empty prayers. "God can you ________?"


This week starts a new chapter for me. I'm going to be more aware of my prayer habits (horrible as they are) and turn them around. I think he'd be happy to hear from all of us this week, if we'd just trust and know that he CAN do what we ask and not pray empty prayers out of obligation.

You ask...I'll answer Pt. 2

Dan (djByron) said...
Found you on Twitter following someone I follow.What part of Indiana are you at (approx location of course)? Just asking because I met my wife while living in Elkhart. We remained there for 3 years prior to moving back to my home state of New York.

I'm in Granger. About 15 minutes from Elkhart. My hubby works in Elkhart. Well his office is there, he drives most the day. Haven't spent much time there...any suggestions of things to see or do?
More great questions from World's Greatest Mommy...

Are you political?

Very. My hubby & I love to talk politics. Now, I didn't say that I know what I'm talking about. But, I do know what's important to me. Although we don't always agree politically, we have fun fighting about it......and making up. =)

Do you believe in love at first sight?

Not for me. I believe in LUST at first sight. I wasn't (still not) mature enough to look at someone and think anything remotely close to " WOW, they'd be a really great caretaker, father, provider, protector" If anyone can, great. But, I don't have that in me.

What are 3 necessary things to have a great marriage?

1. Learn each others' love language. The way I give love is not the way he feels loved. I had to (still am) learn his language and then learn to speak it well. His is acts of service..NOT FOOD RELATED. Argh.....

2. Remember that those sweet little nuances he had before you got married? You know, the ones that were so cute and makes him unique, and you just love that about him....those are the things that will drive you crazy once your married. Focus on the reasons you chose him, not the negative. EVERY MAN on the planet has those annoying things about them. The grass IS NOT greener.

3. Priorities. God first, family second, career third. I want a man who loves God more than me. Without God in the picture, it seems nearly impossible to stay married anymore (we celebrated 11 years in April). I want my man to keep his family by his side, not shove them over to make room for more hours at work. I would also include, keeping your wife above your children. Taking time & effort w/ her shows your children how important she is to the family. In return she will be filled up and be able to pour that out onto your family. A lot of times Moms feel second rate....=( NOT COOL!

Some words your kids will use to describe you as a mom to their own children?

Oh man! Good question. Of course, these are my hopes:
*Christ follower
*A good listener
*And bakes the best chocolate chip cookies EVER!

Favorite cleaning chore?

I have two. Vacuuming & windows. I vacuum everyday (main floor only) and I do my windows once a week! Weird, I know.

This has been fun! Ask any more if you can think of some!

Sunday, May 25, 2008

I'm a law breaker. But not traffic laws. Ok maybe a few.

I've been super conscious lately of the habits of Indiana drivers. You see in Oregon, we have actual LAWS that are ENFORCED. Here, folks swerve, tailgate & speed w/ no regard.

Since I've been more aware, I think my blood pressure has taken a turn for the worse.

Last week I was turning into Sam's Club. There was a stop sign, so I stopped. I then turned left into a row of parking. At the same time someone else (coming towards me) turned right BEFORE the stop sign and crossed over 3 rows of emtpy spots...He nearly hit me.

On Wed. I was at Aldi. I stopped at the stop sign right in front of the entrance (pedestrian crossing). The person behind me turned before the stop sign to take a short cut through unparked spots. When I was able to turn in, she had to put the pedal to the medal to avoid getting crushed (in her Passat) by my tank..literally, it's loaded down w/ all sorts of torture devices (AKA children).

I must confess I am a law breaker though. I usually set my cruise a few mph over the limit.

Which traffic laws do you consciously (or unconsciously) break?

Friday, May 23, 2008

Let's go to NY

Someone suggested I enter my 2 little ones (C is too old) in a cute baby contest. So, I did.

While being totally partial =)...they are the cutest things EVER.

Check them out. Vote for Campbell here....and Kenady here.

You have to click on the stars at the top of the pics. C' it for me. If you all vote, I'm totally winning.

What's in your car?

Shannon over at Rocks in my Dryer is hosting a "What's in your car?" carnival. We all clean out our cars and then post the embarassing list of contents on our own blogs and then link back to hers.

First of all, I have to say that MORE embarassing than my list (my car is actually pretty clean) was cleaning it out in my pj's at 7 am this morning. My neighbors were heading to work and let's just say that their opinion of me is not very high anyway. =/

Here's my list (and a few pics):

Stuff to keep-
ice scraper/snow brush
registration documents
Madonna cd - although I should just throw it out...ipod!
C's bible
An emergency kit w/ 3 days worth of survival stuff (matches, em. blanket, light stick, whistle, water etc)

Stuff to chuck(or just put away!)-
New case of water - just bought yesterday
lip gloss
hand soap
1/4 roll tp
purple plastic Easter egg
7 papers from children's church
2 Girl Sprout registrations
2 lolly pops (unopened)
plastic paint pan
2 reese's pb cup wrappers
2 sticky name tags
1 lolly pop stick
1 bank receipt
$2.01 for tolls
small amount of dirt

Not too shabby!

Head over to Rocks in my Dryer and get a good look at how us ladies keep our cars. I think purses should be next. THAT would be embarassing!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Church video

A must see. GCC's way of encouraging volunteers.

You ask...I'll answer Pt. 1

Here's a few questions from World's Greatest Mommy

Most embarrassing moment as a mom.

- I was at Disneyland in the Summer of 06, by myself, w/ the 3 girls. We had this vacation planned before we moved, so the girls & decided to still go w/ out my hubby. You can ALL imagine how so very fun that was....can't you? I was waiting outside the fence of Dumbo, watching my two oldest (6 & 3 at the time) ride. The baby (8 mo) was in the stroller next to me. I look over to check on her and the stroller was rolling down the hill. I forgot to set the brake! Some nice lady caught the stroller before it crashed & burned into the churros cart. She gave me a dirty look and I think I cried quietly while my kids finished their ride. It was a stressful trip!

Proudest moment as a mom

- When I hear the girls singing in their room. I listen closer and it's worhsip songs. Made up worship songs, but worship none the less.

Thing you're best at cooking

- I can't pick one. I LOVE to bake. My most requested baked items are chocolate chip cookies, pumpkin bread, ginger cookies, banana bread. My most requested family meals are chicken, cheese & spinach stuffed ravioli w/ alfredo. Also, chicken tetrazzini, s***on a shingle, wellfare burgers.

One hobby you wish you had/were good at, but you're not

- scrapbooking. I have ALL of the supplies, and plenty of time, but it just doesn't flip my skirt. I get no enjoyment. It's a big chore for me. So I stopped when my oldest was 3. =/

Make and model of your first car

- 1969 Volkswagon Bug. Cream. License plate said "GRUVEN"....I loved that car. No, I take that back I LOVED that car.

If you could be any kind of flower what kind would you be and why?

- I actually hate flowers. I mean, they're ok to look at, but I would never (NEVER) spend money on them. My hubby knows I prefer Godiva chocolate, purses, shoes or flowers. I guess I would say an african violet, only because they were my Mom's favorite.

Any phrases your parents said to you that you swore you'd never say to your children, but you do?

- No. My Mom wasn't very creative w/ her sayings. She used "I'll give you something to cry about. Kill em w/ kindness." She'd also say "Get your bratty a** back in bed."

I use "What you want & what you get are 2 diff. things. This isn't BK, you can't have it your way. Want in one hand, poop in the other & see which one fills up first." I say "I don't want to see your sweet face until morning."

Different personalities....complete different I would say.

Thanks for the questions. Feel free to ask more!!!

Throwback Thursday

Here we go again. Posting up ridiculous pictures of ourselves ON THE INTERNET!

This is one of me and my boyfriend at the time. It was one of those Sadie Hawkins type dances. I had to ask him, we had to match and I had to pay for everything. I just happened to find that sticker. Isn't it soo coordinating. I didn't even notice until I was scanning.

I was only 15 at the time, had no job so Mom & Dad paid. =) We went to the Gap to find those great hooded shirts & blue shorts.

In this pic, we're standing on some sort of ladder. Actually, I think I am the only one standing on it. I was 5'2". He was 6'2". He was a basketball star, I was a cheer star. Typical huh?

Any of you (who went to school with me) guess who this is?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Blogger Small Group

This week's reading was James 4.

For those of you who are new to Small group...welcome. I'm Mandy and I don't follow the rules. I don't comprehend scripture well from reading & analyzing, so I usually write a story. Just thought I should let you know in case you look at other people's and mine looks weird!

The first thing that popped out to me in this scripture is 4:8 when it says "you double-minded". The first thing I thought of was "two-faced". Ummm.....that's a hard subject for girls. So many times we (in our younger years of course) say one thing to this person, and another thing to that person.

But wait, isn't it true for adults too? Don't some of us act one way in front of our Christian friends, another way at work, and another way at home?

There is a woman at my old church who is always kind, smiling, helpful when there is a group of ladies around. But when you are alone w/ her, she's very different. Making you feel unimportant & unwelcome. Doesn't seem very Christian, but isn't it us Christians who give Christians a bad name?

I honestly think that because this woman was a leader in the church, she knew all of us on a deeper level. Deeper as in, SHE'S SEEN THE FILE, if such a "file" exists. She probably knows everything about us!! I feel like she treated me differently because she knew my past. And not "past" as in last week, last month, last year...but like LAST DECADE! Hello? I think I've grown up a lot in a decade.

The other part that hit home for me was the "boasting about tomorrow". My family LOVES to make plans. Plans for a weekend, a road trip, a vacation, our finances, additions to the house...everything! We made a 400+ paper chain to countdown to our trip to Disneyworld in DECEMBER! (206 days!)

We plan things so far in advance and yet God tells us that "we are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes." He also says "you do not even know what will happen tomorrow."

Silly me - I thought I was in control here! I have plans coming out the wazoo! Plans for my kids college, their weddings, their KIDS. Yet, I feel like we have to plan for somethings. We can't say "I'm not going to save for their college because who knows when Christ is coming."

I guess I need to find a balance in that area of my life. I thought I had learned that after losing my Mom so suddenly... guess I need a referesher too.

UPDATE - Dangit - after reading my post back I realized that 4:11 applies to my reference to the mean lady at church. "do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against his brother or judges him speaks agains the law".........whoops.

Monday, May 19, 2008

What the heck..

I'm in need of a blogging / twittering break. I've got so much clean up after my camping weekend. I've also got my last Girl Sprout meeting tomorrow and cheer tryouts is this week. Ahh...

So here's the scoop. I want to know who reads my blog & answer any questions you might have for me.

Ask me anything. I'll do my best to answer honestly while still holding on to my dignity.

Leave me a comment and make sure you link to your blog so I can read it. Tell me your name, what state your in, how you found me, what you hate / love about my blog, a question...anything at all.

I'll start answering on Wednesday. Even if you've never commented before, please comment!!!

I can see God

The girls & I had some great talks this weekend. Here's one of our conversations:

Cyra - "Why aren't we able to see God?"

Kenady - "I see him all the time!"

Cyra - "No you don't"

Kenady - "Yes, I do"

Mom - "Girls, God is kind of like the wind."

Cyra - "What? He makes us cold and blows over our tent?"

Mom - " No. We can't SEE the wind, but we know it's there when it rustles through the trees. We know it's there when it comes through and cools us off when it's hot out."

Cyra - "Oh, I get it. We can hear him talking to us or telling us what to do, we just can't see his face."

Kenady - "How come God doesn't talk to me when I ask him to help me clean my room?"

Cyra - "hahahaha"

Mom - "He does help you. By giving you a strong body so you can do the work."

Kenady - "That's not the kind of help I want."

Mom - "Well, what you WANT, and what you GET are 2 different things darlin."

Sunday, May 18, 2008

Camping = time w/ God

For those of you who follow me on Twitter, you already know I took my oldest 2 camping this last weekend.

We had a good time. It took me a whole hour to set up the tent, but I was still impressed. Hello? It's not easy...

The first night was rough. Our camp stove broke. Sucky. Then a storm came through. Super sucky. We just layed awake and looked at each other.

The girls fell asleep, but I was wide awake waiting for the storm to throw us (in our tent) back to Indiana.

So, I started to pray. Now, I have to admit that I'm horrible at praying consistently. I pray when I need something, not as a form of worship....I'm working on it ok.

My favorite way to pray is the ABC prayer. Find a word that starts w/ A that you want to pray for. Here are a few that I ended up praying about, that really moved me.

C - Children, that they would find God loving men and continue to serve Christ.
L - Love, that I would be better about showing love to folks, not just my immediate family.
M - Money, be more responsible w/ what he's giving me to manage.
P - Patience, force myself to practice so that patience is my automatic response. Also, positivity...I'm such a pessimist. (perfect timing huh Scott?)
Q - Quitting, that I would follow through with things. Quitting is not an option. God doesn't quit o me.

Anyway, the first night, as horrible as it seemed, turned out to be some great time w/ God.

Here are a few pics from the weekend. The truck unpacked & packed. The tent ....aren't you impressed? Kenady's swollen feet from our LONG hike. Cyra awake at 2 am. Having breakfast in the back of the truck. Didn't get picks of us writing nature haiku & cinquain poems and then binding our own books. Also missed picks of our campfires. The phone died.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Favorite shoes

OK, so I totally bagged on Crocs yesterday. I claimed them to be the "ugliest, most unattractive pair of shoes ever to be produced." I know some of you must love them. I mean for Pete's sake, they sell out of them weekly at the Hallmark(s). And everyone at the Walmart(s) is wearing em.

So I'd like you all to post a picture of your favorite pair of shoes (even if they are crocs) and a short story of where you bought them, why you bought them, how much they were (any bit of information that might be of interest to us gawkers) on your own blog. Then come back here and click on Mr. Linky and add your name and your post's URL. Not your blog's URL, just the shoe post.

If you can't figure it out, just email me, or call if you already have my #.

Honestly, I'll be thrilled if I can just figure out the Mr. Linky thing and get more than 5 people to post.

Here's my favorite pair.

My hubby game me a gift card to a shoe store that had BOGO. LOVE BOGO!

I found some running shoes. Not showing them here, because frankly, they might as well still have the tags on them. Then I found this sweet pink Sketcher sandal / tennis shoe. They looked like ballet slippers, and some of you know my LOVE of ballet slippers.

They were about $45 and have been through many, many airports. Easy to slip on & off w/ 3 kids in tow. I had them for 2 years already!

Please, please don't email me informing me of the perfect self tanner that I so desperately need. I know I'm white. In fact it's difficult to tell the shoe is even pink from the blinding glare off my legs. And ignore the Jasmine & Aladdin bandaid. I cut myself shaving.

Don't forget to post on your own blog then link back here.

Family night.

Tuesday night was our family night. The girls chose Pirates as our theme. Dustin & Alison joined us again, as well as the neighbor girl.

First we decorated the table w/ an old fishing net, and a diaper wipe box decorated like a treasure chest. I put a few beads, rings and candies in it before I hot glued it shut. We also had a telescope made out of a paper towel roll.

Cyra made some paper decorations to hang from our light. I made parrots from toilet paper rolls that had a stretchy string so you could put it on your shoulder. They were stinkin' cute.

We made signs out of ripped up paper bags that read "Pirate only, trespassers will walk the plank" for the front door, "Poop deck" for the bathroom & "Time flies, when you're having rum" for the kitchen.

Appetizers were "peg legs & sea foam" (carrots sticks & ranch), "sailor's knots" (pretzels) and "cannonballs" (whoppers). And the punch was Sprite w/ ice cubes made from Tropical punch kool-aid. When the ice cube melted, it looked like Sharks Blood.
For dinner I served the kids hot dogs in a blue basket with a skewer & sail stuck in it. I also sprinkled gold fish around so it really looked like a boat. The adults had "seaweed" - spinach pasta w/ grilled garlic chicken & seafoam (alfredo).

Dessert was supposed to be a pirate ship cake, but dangit if my cake recipe isn't too moist. ;P So I chopped it all up, layered it with pudding and topped it with ground up graham cracker crumbs and served it w/a shovel & looked like a sand pail! (Guess I didn't get a pic.)
The girls played Go Fish. I also made a homemade hook and they tried to get "sailor's knots" out of a bowl using it.

It was a fun night! Let's see what they come up w/ next time.

Throwback Thursday

This is so much fun, except my scanner wouldn't scan the pic I WANTED to put up. So, here's another that was already in my puter.

As you can see, my love of cheerleading started early.
Why on earth would my mom let me out w/ mismatched green sweats? Oh, but if you have on the patent leather white Mary Janes it makes it look so much more put together.
Join me for Throwback Thursday! Leave a comment, so I can check out your post as well.

You're seriously p.o.'d about cookie awards? Part 2

This is the response I got from a particular Mom after I sent out this previous letter.

We are well aware of the process and fully understand the civics lesson that you describe below. I was not suggesting that we were less committed to the goals of Girl Scouts because of selling less cookies. What I offered as a friendly suggestion was that perhaps there was a different way to hand out the prizes.

This is my response:

I was trying to address everyone's concerns via one email. Not everyone voices their concerns or questions easily, so I wanted to quell any fears before they surfaced.

If blank understands the cookie sale program, then I guess I don't understand the problem. It clearly states what it takes to get those prizes. Girls can choose to do it or not. That is part of the recognition that the GS office encourages us to give.

Cyra wanted a certain prize (low on the ladder) so she made a plan and followed through. If she hadn't of followed through, she would have been disappointed, but at no one's fault but her own. That's part of the learning process. We never learn the true thrill of success unless we experience failure a few times. Just like fledgling businesses fail if they don't have a plan and then execute it, so it is w/ cookie sales.

It is not fair to take away the recognition from any girl whether it be receiving a badge or a cookie prize. Participating in recognition from, or for, their peers is an important life lesson that is in line w/ the GS way.

Last year we did an actual cookie prize ceremony. Girls came up, got their prize, talked about their process, received applause and we went on to the next girl. This year, things were busy, so we just handed them out casually.

If you think this is too hard for blank to be a part of, I understand. I would be willing to send out an email before any prize ceremonies and parents can decide whether or not to bring their daughter on that day. I will not take away the chance for these girls to be recognized by their peers for a job well done. But I find no problem with allowing parents to decide if that's something they want their daughter to experience.

Apparently I'm not being forward enough w/ my Moms. I don't think I should have to take away that amazing experience of receiving a prize and being applauded by your peers, just because 1 child gets upset.

Several girls didn't sell enough to get anything more than a patch. No one else got upset.

Am I being forward enough? Am I being rude? Tell me please.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Mr. Fix it

We have had this Sony TV for about 4 years. It's about 42 inches and has a built in DVD player. It works well. No complaints.

About 5 months ago, a little person decided to break it. I'm pretty sure it was deliberate, but can't get any of them to confess. I think she's the culprit. Seems sweet right?

My hubby was fed up the other night. He tore apart the whole tv. Pieces flying everywhere, a few choice words flying around as well. My dining room table was filled w/ ..... stuff. If I didn't know better, I'd say the unibomber had moved into the basement.

I couldn't believe it, but he took that thing apart, found a rinky dink, teeny tiny piece that was broken. Went to the store. Bought some super duper fix it grease and VOILA! Fixed.

No repairman needed. Under $5 to fix. No more screwdriver to get the darn thing to open.

He's a good man. I think I might just advertise his tv repairing skills.

You're seriously p.o.'d about cookie awards?

I received a less than tasteful note from a GS mom concerned that her daughter didn't have the same opportunity to recieve a cookie prize for her sales. I responded to the troop as a whole, just in case there were any other P.O.'d parents. Here's the letter I wrote:

I have been approached with a few suggestions on how to maybe ease some hurt feelings when it comes to the cookie prizes being handed out. I wanted to address this in a mass email for any of you that may be concerned about it.

This year, the troop sold 1080 boxes of cookies which equals $648 for our troops activities. Each girl, whether they sold 10 or 100 boxes benefits equally.

The Girl Scout council has been so kind to provide prizes to those girls who reach certain milestones. Girls who sell even just one box will receive a participation patch & certificate. The prize ladder is layed out in the cookie paperwork that is sent home at the beginning of the sale. It clearly defines that the girls' level of participation will be rewarded with specific prizes, as well as the funds to provide activities for the year. It also includes goal setting information to reach those prizes.

I think it's important for members of our troop, girls and parents, to remember that out of 11 girls, we have many different personalities. Some girls sell cookies ONLY for the recognition. Some sell because they understand the correlation of sales & activities or lack thereof. A few sell because they love the friendship that their Scout experience has created. Without cookie sales none of that would exist.

I must also mention that there are no "territories" in cookie selling. Our neighborhood has so many Girl Scouts, that selling here was impossible. Since we have no family nearby, we chose to go to Dad's work, the insurance office, the doctor's office and anywhere we could think of, to sell cookies. Next year we will have nut & cookie sales, so maybe we could all get a jump on our ideal selling locations.

I want all the girls to feel the success of funding their own activities. It's part of the Girl Scout tradition. It provides the girls with a chance to make a business plan and then follow through with said plan. The sale also gives them the chance to be excited for other girls whether they've reached the first prize level or the top prize level. And most of all, pride in completing their own plan and in how they've conducted themselves watching others receive recognition.

My goal as a volunteer leader is this; when the girls are finished with their years as a Scout, they will understand and uphold the Girl Scout law in every aspect of life.


I will do my best to be
honest and fair,
friendly and helpful,
considerate and caring,
courageous and strong, and
responsible for what I say and do.
and to
respect myself and other,
respect authority,
use resources wisely,
make the world a better place, and
be a sister to every Girl Scout.

I appreciate your support while I work with the girls, helping them to learn this important life lesson.


Miss Mandy

Parents drive me crazy. The End.

Works for me Wednesday

It's been a few weeks since I've participated in Works for me! Guess not much works for me. Actaully, that's not true. Not sure what I've been up to (beside 5'2")

Here goes - I've been working w/ kids for a lllllooooonnnnnnggggg time. I started out doing respite care for the ARC, I went to school for early childhood ed, I was a nanny for several years and now have my own 3 darling girls.

What I've discovered is this: accidents are GOING to happen.
And this: bandaids or an ice pack cures just about everything.
And this: little kids HATE you to touch their owies w/ said bandaid or ice pack.

So I came up w/ the ingenious plan. I ask for extra ketchup packets at the drive thru. Then I chuck them in a special spot in the freezer. When a kid gets an owie, they hold their ketchup packet on the owie until it's squishy again. That way, they get to hold it instead of you (we apparently push too hard) AND it's small enough for their tiny fingers.

Hope it works for you! Check out Rocks in my Dryer for more ideas on what works!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

What's your nickname?

I was thinking earlier today, about the nicknames I used to have growing up.

Here's a few:

My Dad called me Porkchop...I had chunky thighs.
Mayonnaise - I'm really REALLY!
Douche bag - thanks Marty. He did this until I asked my Mom what it was.

There's one more, but I can't share. Some of you already know it, but we're in mixed company.

What were your nicknames growing up? Or now?

Blogger Small Group

This week's reading was James 3. Kyle - why did you have to pick the book of James? It's like a slap in the face.

I DID actually read the scripture this week, before today. Thank you very much.

For some reason, little bits & pieces stand out for me when I read scripture. Here's what stood out to me this week.

"When we put bits into the mouths of horses to make them obey us, we can turn the whole animal. Or take ships as an example. Although they are so large and are drive by strongs winds, they are steered by a very small rudder wherevere the pilot wants to go. Likewise the tongue is a small part of the body, but it makes great boasts. Consider what a great forest is set on fire by a small spark. The tongue also is a fire, and is itself set on fire by hell."

I totally get the comparison of horses & boats to the tongue, although I've been(in the past) unable (maybe unwilling) to control it or have it controlled. My loud, abnoxious mouth has gotten me into more trouble than I can truly tell you about. No seriously, I can't tell you. You'd be considered an accessory.

Let me give you some background. I didn't attend church during the 15-25 stage. I partied. A lot. I got into some serious, not legal trouble. But, I did get myself into some real trouble in our small town. I was doing some things I shouldn't, then lying about it to ...well...everyone. My parents had no idea what I was doing. My friends (who SHOULDN'T have trusted me) were getting hurt left & right. I KNEW it was hurting them, but couldn't stop. My mouth had gotten me in some trouble, I thought no one could repair.

My friend Kristi (a new friend, already lost all the old ones), invited me to a women's "campout" aka - women's bible thumpin, hand raisin, Jesus praisin weekend. Needless to say I got saved. I actually prayed for salvation w/ Matt Kearney's Mom Shannon. She's an amazing woman w/ a heart for God.

Moments after praying the ABCs (Accept, Believe, Confess) I walk outside the cabin and see an old HS friend. I use the term friend lightly because the friendship ended with her confronting me at my job junior year and me sneaking out the back door. Yeah, bad situation.

She noticed me but walked to her cabin w/ out really acknowledging me. I prayed w/ Kristi and then followed my old friend to her cabin. I broke down when I opened the door. My tongue flew (w/ fire, but not the bad kind) I told her all the things that had been brewing over the past 7 years.

She looked at me and said "I forgive you." Wow - that was it? That was all it took? Telling the truth? Who knew?

I learned at that moment how powerful spoken words are. Actually how powerful unspoken words are as well. This scripture is a reminder for me. Where I used to be. And where I'm headed.

Monday, May 12, 2008

My first Christian CD ever

I was so excited to see Seth Bible perform at church the other night. This guy has an amazing voice and mixed w/ Trace, well, it was greatness.

Here's the vid of them performing a song from DC Talk (my 1st ever Christian cd).

To watch Seth sing alone go here, and scroll down about an inch. His song is called The Glory of it All.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Hats in church

Tonight we went to the early service at church. As I was sitting down, I spotted a couple from dance class. They aren't the most social people, so I took the initiative and went to say hello.

The wife was busy talking to a her neighbor so I asked the hubby how they were doing, and the wife (very suddenly) turned around and went OFF on him about wearing his hat in church. I tried to regain my composure...seriously she was yelling. I smiled and said "My hubby sometimes wears a hat too. When I was growing up, it wasn't allowed. But churches are much more accepting now." Her husband looked shocked that I even said anything that was in disagreement w/ her.

She replied "Real Christians don't wear hats in church out of respect."

Ummm...ok. I just said "Well, you two enjoy the service and see you soon." She stared at me for a long time after I sat down. I swear I felt my flesh being burned away. I looked over a minute later and the hubby had removed his hat. =/

Luckily Trace came out shortly after to start worship. Guess what? He was wearing a hat.

My experiment

Last night I went to dance class. First time since February. Naturally I was excited. I absolutely love to swing, fox trot & cha cha.

Disclaimer - names have been changed to protect the poor dancers.

There are several gentleman that I always end up dancing w/ at least once. Bob is about 50 and thinks he knows everything about dance. Mind you, he's only a social ballroom dancer, and has only been dancing for a few years. He has to stop & start constantly to stay on beat.

Next is Pete. He's about 75. He had heart surgery 15 years ago and dances to keep his body healthy. Attention Pete - just quit smoking a pack+ a day. That'll help. He's always trying to do the Viennese waltz...even when it's a cha cha. The Viennese Waltz should not be done by anyone over the age of 60 (w/ a few exceptions). He asks me to dance 5+ times a night. He's pretty sweet though.

Let's talk about Kyle. He's probably 25 & 6 ft. tall. He's decided that he won't adjust his frame for any woman, no matter how short. This results in some serious arm cramps while in a closed position. Although after last night, I'm thinking the open position is worse. He asks me to East Coast swing. He's not on beat. He decides to swing me out and pushes me so I'll do a double or triple turn. While I'm turning, he adlibs some cool John Travolta Grease Lightning moves. He wears super tight pants, so he really looks the part. Well, except for the glasses & the acne. I secretly prayed for the "Grease Lightning" to strike while we were dancing, so it would all just stop.

One more. Eric is about 25. He always wants to cha cha, but is still learning how. He likes to make up moves and claim that they are "advanced" steps. Hello? I've been dancing ballroom (among many other types of dance)MY ENTIRE LIFE. You can't fool me. Anyway, he always asks me out to Applebee's afterward nearly every time. Of course I don't go. Now I find out that only a few years ago "he" was a "she". Hmm...

So last night I walk in, NOBODY RECOGNIZES ME. Finally Tina says "Wow, I wouldn't have recognized you on the street!" The owner of the studio said the same thing.

I said hello to a nice gentleman that I usually sit by...he just walked away & smiled. This continued for several people. So I thought I'd conduct an experiment.

Experiment - Can I avoid dancing w/ the above mentioned folks for one evening? Maybe none of them will recognize me with straight hair, and I'll get the opportunity to dance w/ some of the young bucks that have some energy to really move.

It worked for most of the night. Pete recognized me and asked me twice (he of course did the Viennese). I obliged and used the time to talk. At least my lungs got a little workout, my legs sure didn't.

I did get to teach a few new guys how to foxtrot & swing. All in all it was a successful experiment. I think I heard (about 5 times) "Who's the new girl?" Girl? Wow - that alone was worth the time it took to straighten my locks. Wait, I guess when you're 75, a 31 year old looks like a girl. Never mind.

Friday, May 9, 2008

Don't forget to call your Mother

My friend Raianne just sent me this ebaums video. Hilarious. Don't forget your Mom, or the Mother of your children this Sunday.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


My sister in law participated in Throwback Thursday. I knew she couldn't resist for long. It involves pictures...she's the picture queen!

Favorite music

Last night I was downloading all of my cd's to my computer. My hubby had already put them on his laptop, but my computer is much faster. Poor guy, he's ready for a new computer.

Anyway, there were a few that had a difficult time because of the scratches.

For example:

Tom Jones
Prince - all but Musicology
Gwen Stefani
Mario Winans

Which cd's are so overplayed in your house that they would have a difficult time downloading?
If you don't use cd's at all - just tell us your fav. album downloads.

Throwback Thursday

Everytime I look at this pic I think the same thing "dang! That's some dirty water!"

My Mom always said it looked dirty from the rain water. Whatever Mom. I like to think we had spent the day making mudpies and memories. Only I know that's not true, because I can't remember.

Maybe Mom was right.

I'm hoping my brother Marty doesn't sue me for posting his pic w/ out asking. Jen - I'm asking you...after the fact.
If you'd like to participate in Throwback Thursday. Leave a comment w/ your link. Make sure you check out Scott's post & Kyle's post for a good chuckle.

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

It's here! It's here!

I've been checking my mail since Monday. No phone.

Then I find out that it's coming DHL. I got my camera ready

I got my camera ready to take a pic of the DHL carrier only it was raining when she came. She put it in the door, rang the bell & ran back to her truck.
So, I didn't get a good pic. I guess I've only got 2 days to figure it out. The pressure.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

John McCain

I was forwarded this article about John McCain. Thought you might want an interesting read.

Blogger Small Group

I'm going to be honest and tell you all that I did not read this scripture until 10 minutes ago. Kyle "encouraged" me to follow through w/ the small group task.

Now let me be honest again. I quickly glanced it over and saw that I had a few things underlined. They were:

faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. (v. 17)


You see that his faith and his actions were working together. (v. 22)

So of course, I was going to write about that because, heck at one time it was the thing I got most out of James 2 right? I started writing and forced myself to stop. I didn't READ it, I skimmed and then proceeded to write about something, just for the sake of having an entry for Mr. Linky.

So I'm stopping to read, really read, pray for a minute and I'll be back.

OK - I'm back. Here goes:

James 2: 2 says Suppose a man comes into your meeting wearing a gold ring and fine clothes, and a poor man in shabby clothes also comes in. If you show special attention to the man wearing fine clothes and say, "Here's a good seat for you," but say to the poor man, "You stand here," or "sit on the floor by my feet," have you not discriminated among yourselves and become judges w/ evil thoughts?

Funny, but this is exactly where I'm at right now.

I moved out of a small town in OR where there were certain expectations of me. I grew up there. Everyone knew me & my family. I had lifetime friends. When I got saved I got some new friends. They weren't widely accepted by the old ones. I lost a few old ones.

Then I moved to IN. I can't tell you how excited I was to start over. New people, no pre-conceived notions. A new chance to grow in Christ.

We bought a 10 year old, very affordable (compared to OR) house in a good school district. I couldn't wait to meet my neighbors. Unfortunately no one stopped by for 2 weeks. Being the social person I am, I made about 15 loaves of pumpkin bread and went door to door. Most were receptive, some were not. After 2 years, most are not. I joked about the reason why earlier today. The real reason? Not sure. Last night I told my hubby that I think the people in my neighborhood are snobby. They think they have a lot of money, and I don't.

Honestly, how can you tell someone's financial record by looking? I don't have a nice car, but I don't have a car payment either. My house isn't new, but it'll be paid off in a very short amount of time. I don't have uber trendy clothes or kids, but I've got property that'll have me set for retirement.

But because of appearances, I'm on the outskirts in our neighborhood. 2 doors down they had a brand new Lexus, brand new, less than a year ago! I don't even know what they have now, something else new. Across the street there's a new BMW SUV. Behind us, 2 inground pools. Next door, they just got back from another vacation. In the cul de sac, their kids go to an exclusive private school. Down the road, new promotion, therefore brand new, big, home in EXCLUSIVE neighborhood.

But wait - aren't I being snobby, by saying THEY are snobby. Isn't that a type of reverse discrimination or reverse favortism? I, who has "less money" at my disposal, am discriminating against those who have it, or at least want to portray that they do? Who am I to judge how someone spends their discretionary income?

I'm going to stick to my guns and not fall back into the new car, new house, spendy clothes, spendy EVERYTHING lifestyle. I've been there, and it's not where I want to be. I'd rather have a 1/2 empty closet than a 1/2 empty bank account. That's just where I'M at in my life. That doesn't mean that everyone else (or ANYONE for that matter) has to agree or join in.

I've got to remember that God doesn't show favortism....I shouldn't either, or reverse favortism in my case. A difficult task for a pessimist.

It's Coco's fault.

I think I figured out why most of my neighbors aren't social with me.

I think it's my dog. Our neighborhood is filled w/ folks who have very large dogs...and jumpable fences. It's a good morning when I find a big steaming pile of dog doo in my front yard. Good because it actually made it to the grass instead of my sidewalk. Anway, these neighborhood dogs have "playdates." Seriously. One neighbor walks over to the other neighbor's yard and lets her dog in their fence so the dogs can "play".

Problem being, the dogs now have a partner in crime. They easily jump the fence and decide to come to my yard because...I have no fence (I prefer open rolling grass w/ no barriers. I'm open like that).

My dog goes out every few hours, steps only inches onto the grass, tinkles & comes back to the door. She doesn't wander, she doesn't raise a ruckus. Sweet, sweet Coco.

But, every once in awhile she goes out and there's another dog in our yard. They mistake her for a large chocolate bon-bon or a piece of tender steak and pounce. The neighbor's boxer pins her to the ground as she urinates all over his face (his face is as big as her whole body) out of fear. I try to break them up only to get growled at by the neighbor's polka dot dog.

The polka dot dog has been named such, well because I have girls and the dog has spots. Put those together you get a polka dot dog. This dog has chased my kid off of the bus, come in my back screen door while I'm cooking dinner to "help" me taste test, and, and, AND, takin' a dump on the walkway to my front door.

No, I haven't told the neighbor. She no longer likes me (I won't babysit her 3 kids often enough) (and possibly because I use paranthesis too often) and makes sure I know it by pointing out the faults in my yardwork, the chalk drawings on my sidewalk and my party decorations that are visible from the street (I secretly thinks she wants to be invited).

So, like me (and my dog) or not...I'm here to stay. And neighbor, if you're reading this. Lighten up. I really am nice and if you can teach your dog to hold his poop AND not eat my dog, maybe, just maybe he & Coco can be friends.

Monday, May 5, 2008

It's Cinco De Mayo

We're heading off to Mazatlan Mexican Restaurant tonight. The girls dressed up for the occasion. Thanks to Ana from Torero's in OR, we have TONS of Mexican dresses!

Do I have to shake hands at church?

Church on Saturday night was really great. Pastor Rob spoke. The current series is called Get in the Game and this week was entitled Call of Duty.

Anyway, I was sitting in about the 5th row on the right hand side of the stage. (BTW - sound people at GCC, it's not good quality over there) There was this guy sitting across the aisle & 1 row up from me. He was alone. We stood up to sing. He stood, but no singing. He just folded his arms and looked discerning. I remember Pastor Mark (I think it was him) telling us once that folding your arms was like saying "OK God - let's see what you can do. Show me, cause I'm not so sure." Of course I'm quoting what I remember, not what he actually said. Let's not get technical over here.

Moving on....I felt like I was supposed to go shake his hand during our meet & greet time. It was like I had that little angel vs. devil thing happening on my shoulder(although I'm convinced both were the devil). One second feeling like I needed to go over, the other feeling else will.

He shook several people's hands, not including mine. I have no idea why, but I just couldn't bring myself to do it. I watched him for the rest of the service. He wrote down a few tidbits from service, but then about 45 minutes into it, he reached down and untucked his shirt. Then he stuck his hand in his belt and just rested it there. Weird, but ok. Then he reached his hand down his crack....seriously. He picked, scratched, picked, scratched, picked and LET HIS HAND REST IN HIS CRACK FOR THE REST OF THE SERVICE! That's capitalized because IT'S GROSS!

I have no idea what church was about after that. I couldn't focus. Who could at that point? All I could think of was "thank goodness I didn't shake his hand and we aren't handling the same tithing bucket!!!"

I guess I'll have to listen to Call of Doody Call of Duty online sometime this week!

His vs. Hers

This is a new Get the lead out series called His vs. Hers. I stole borrowed the idea from Brent over at inWorship.

I made burgers yesterday. I rarely use frozen, preformed patties. I actually enjoy getting my hands yucky and mixing my own hamburger meat. I use hamburger, egg, bread crumbs, worcestershire, garlic, onion, pepper and pretty much whatever sounds good at the time. It is super tasty and has a really smooth texture. We call them "welfare burgers" after the Eddie Murphy skit in RAW.

His welfare burger:

Her welfare burger:

I think the only difference between the 2 is tomato & mustard. I just like cheese, mayo & lettuce.
Here's the Eddie Murphy skit that inspired our burger's name.

Friday, May 2, 2008

For those with a sub-par attitude

Michelle Wegner posted a list of 10 things you can do so you won't be mean anymore.

Although #3, 5 & 10 are right up my alley...#7 is yucky and #6, well, #6 is just wrong once you have ...ahem..."matured."

Here's my list for a little pick me up:

1. Vacuum
2. Hot bath
3. Cold Stone
4. Windows
5. Bake cookies Eat cookie dough
6. Basement dance party
7. Barnes & Noble
8. Twitter or blog
9. Stealing candy from my kids - I really enjoy this. They never know, & feel sneaky. Exciting & sick all at the same time.
10. Quiet time w/ Jesus

What about you?

Thursday, May 1, 2008

The Tooth Fairy

Shannon over at Rocks in my Dryer has a great conversation going! The topic (in case you don't want to read her post) is about how much the Tooth Fairy leaves at your house.

Here is the comment I left:

When my oldest lost her first tooth, the tooth fairy was having a super rough day and forgot to get change. She had just moved into her new house and didn't have a change jar or anything! She decided to leave $20 w/ a note and a YOM (you owe me). It said "I know it's exciting to see $20 under your pillow. I had a busy, busy day (what w/ all those teeth to collect) and ran out of dollar bills. I'm going to leave this for you and you can have your parents make change. You can keep $5 (for all your trouble) and put $15 under the pillow and I'll pick it up tomorrow night."

Yeah - it didn't work. She said "Did you leave that note Mom? Trying to get my tooth money?"

She then calculated how much her mouth was worth. At that time she had 20 teeth and called her Papa to tell him that she would eventually get $400.

Nice huh? $20 a tooth. Talk about inflation. I always got 4 quarters. Except once when they had really long roots, I got $2.

After posting that comment I remembered one time when I didn't have $20. So, I dug around in my gift box and found a small hello kitty handbag, some lip gloss, nail polish & a book I think. She was fine w/ that too.

I wanna know....

A. What did the tooth fairy leave you when you were younger & what year was that?

B. What does your tooth fairy leave now?

C. Or, if your kids aren't old enough...what is your plan?

Throwback Thursday

So my new friend (& small group leader) Kyle asked me to join his new efforts. We're starting Throwback Thursday. For all you hillbillies in Oregon...we ain't talkin' about that thing you do on the Umpqua....

Every Thursday (unless I forget, which I'm known to do) I'll post an old pic of myself and tell some sort of story to go along w/ it. Yes, it may be lame....but isn't lame the new cool?

So, here is me in all my 3rd grade glory. I only know that because I'm wearing THE pants. Parachute pants were my favorite. My Grandma bought me this black pair at The Hub....all you Oregonians know about that place!!! My Mom then copied the pattern and made me several other pairs in more girly colors.

I especially love my sweatshirt. I was so into Cabbage Patch Kids. I had 8 of them (still do).

In 3rd grade, I attended Bohemia Elementary school in Cottage Grove OR. My teacher was Ms. Holmes. She was from Chile and I loved her. My best friend was Tori Bell. She was also my neighbor and this is the year I got my first record (not to share or a 45)....Prince's Purple Rain. My Mom apparently didn't listen to it first to make sure it was appropriate for 8 year old ears.

It also looks like it's Christmas time in this pic. I noticed my Mom's Santa candle on the table next to me. I used to love Christmas at my house. My Mom spent a lot of time decorating and making so many yummy things to eat. My Dad didn't like Christmas, but I think that's because he grew up in a house w/ so many kids. His parents couldn't afford gifts, so they just had a lot of food. With 10 kids, how could you afford to have a BIG Christmas?

I have to talk about that loveseat I'm sitting on. I know my parents bought it in 1980, but I can't rembember where (I WAS only 3). It had a matching chair and this is where our parents sat when we opened our presents. Us kids sat here when we watched our parents practice their dancing. There is a big woodstove in this room that was always roaring in the winter. We'd dry off from our baths in there. Mom would raise bread on top. Dad would always have water boiling for tea. Despite their outward appearance, they're actually quite comfortable. My Dad finally sold them in his yard sale last Summer. We seriouly had those for 27 years. Wow.

BTW - our old house is for sale right now. It looks rougher than I remember. My room was the window on the left.

So, there you go. A glimpse into my life. I'll try to crop some new pics this week. I can't be posting my schoolmates photos all over the net. If you'd like to join Throwback Thursday, let me know. I'd love to read!