Friday, November 30, 2012

I made it to Day 30 of NaBloPoMo!!!

This is the last of my off-subject blog posts, I promise! Well at least until Oliver is born and then I'm sure you will all want to see him, right? And I hope to start showing you things I've made for him soon. But for one last time I will use the BlogHer NaBloPoMo prompt for the day:

Friday, November 30, 2012
What has been the hardest part about blogging daily?

Doing anything other than personal hygiene on a daily basis is just not my style and even the hygiene has taken a back seat to some much needed down time on occasion. I have found out that I function better when allowed to fail, or at least when allowed to not follow a rigid structure. My ideal vacation would be one that has a starting and ending point with some "must see" spots in-between, unlimited budget (in my dreams!), no set time frame and done in a comfortable vehicle with a killer sound system. The closest I've come to that is a side trip to Colorado at the tail end of a business trip to Western Kansas. I must say that my 91 Bonneville did have one of the best sound systems of any car I've ever had and was very comfortable. Ok, so I digress.......

It's been tough for me to remember to blog every day and I've had to back-date one or two posts. I'm more of the "blog when I feel like it" sort of people. That's why I've not pursued any design teams or gotten super committed to weekly challenges. I guess some folks thrive on the competition or love the challenge, but I find my life to be far less stressful when I allow myself the flexibility of controlling my leisure time by not having to abide by deadlines. Heaven knows I've got enough of those at work! Yeah, I never could keep a paper journal or diary either. I found at least four spiral or hardback journals with only one or two entries in them, including some that I started when my daughter was born.

So what causes this lackadaisical attitude? Is it my CADD (Crafters Attention Deficit Disorder), PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder), sensory overloaded or maybe none of the above? Maybe it's perfectly normal and all of you who religiously blog every day are really the odd ones! Maybe you have an unnatural need to achieve this lofty goal, or perhaps you actually make money blogging... Yes, THAT must be it!!! So when I grow up and retire maybe I'll start blogging every day too and maybe someone will pay me to do it! Sounds like a plan to me!

If I were to start blogging every day or even once a week, what would you come back here every day or week to read?

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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Three great blog to read

It's hard to believe that November is almost over and even harder to believe that I've posted for 29 straight days in a row! Wowser! The BlogHer NaBloPoMo prompt for today is:

Thursday, November 29, 2012
Tell us about three new blogs you found this year.

Honestly I can't tell you when I began reading these three blogs, but have thoroughly enjoyed them over the past year.

First is Simply Modern Mom who will treat you to recipes and other home ideas that will simply delight you.

Next is Erin Cooks, another great foodie blog full of great stuff.

Then there's Sweet Paper Treats where Karen continues to amaze me with her talent as a card and scrapbook creator. Now she's even designing stamps for Market Street Stamps!

I'm certain that you'll enjoy their blogs too, so go take a look!

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Driving in a blizzard

Today's BlogHer NaBloPoMo:

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tell us about the worst trip you ever took.

It would have to be the return trip from my husband's grandmother's funeral years ago. He didn't realize that he was allowed to take funeral leave, so I drove across western Kansas in a blizzard. Talk about white knuckle driving! If it weren't for the awesome 1969 Buick Wildcat that I was driving we never would have made it. If I say "PFHULLLUMP" and tell you that we plowed through 3 to 4 foot or higher snow drifts while maneuvering around the cars and 18-wheelers that were going off the road around us or were already in the ditch would that muster up a clear picture? Around these parts they call it a ground blizzard because the snow had already fallen, but the wind caused fresh drifting and white-out conditions. It's only 206 miles, but felt like 2006 and took about ten times longer. Well I got him back home safe and sound and I'm sure his employer was impressed with his commitment to work, but I'll never drive in those conditions again!

Oh yeah, we still have that old Buick in the garage. Betsy has seen her better days, but we have plans to get her fixed up and drive her in parades one of these days!

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

T-minus 30 and counting

That would be 30 days and the countdown is for the birth of my first grandchild Oliver who is due December 27th! I can't believe that the past eight months have flown by so quickly and that soon we will hear the cries and coos coming from that tiny little baby boy. Ok, so let's tie that thought I. With today's BlogHer NaBloPoMo prompt:

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

If you could instantly know any language in the world, which one would it be?

Hmmm, it's a stretch, but while looking up the origin of the term t-minus I discovered an interesting fact on the Wikipedia entry. The term was first used in a 1929 German silent film Frau Im Mond (Woman in the Moon) which was the first time a rocket launch was presented on film, or at least the sci-fi version of one. So, rocket launch = birth of baby and German is the language I'd love to know instantly! I've lived in Germany twice and studied the language in collage, but can't for the life of me get a handle on becoming bi-lingual! What's up with that?

Why German and not something romantic like French or practical like Mandarin? Perhaps because half of the blood in my veins is of German origin and did I mention that I'd lived there twice and studied it in college? I thought so! What makes it so special? I think it's the fact that while living in Germany as a soldier in the Army I found something that has remained with me ever since... A true relationship with my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ! Yes, it happened as a result of a coffee house ministry called King's Crossing Coffee House which was done in the basement of the base chapel. Yup, I was part of the Jesus movement!

I hope to be able to share my love for The Lord with Oliver in a way that enriches his life. Maybe we'll even learn to speak German together!

The tour group in Israel, March 1975

My baptism in the Jordan River March 1975

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Monday, November 26, 2012

The language of Mom

Monday, November 26, 2012

Do you speak more than one language? How did you learn the additional languages?

I'd like to get off the beaten path a bit tonight as I answer those two questions. What do you automatically think of when asked if we speak another language? Yeah, me too... A language other than that of your home country, whether that be English, German, French, Japanese or any other written and spoken language. Well here's the thing... I truly believe there is another very unique and special language that I'd like to call Mom-speak. We all know what that is, but the amazing thing is, it's different for each and every one of us! How many other languages can boast of that power?

Let me give you a few examples of what Mom-speak sounds like to me, but before I do, let me share the most recent picture of her that was posted on Facebook by my niece right after Mom got a hair perm and manicure. Isn't she beautiful?!?

Ka-Mish-Shaaaronnnn!!! She'd say as she worked her way down the line of daughters... Kathy, Michelle, then me, Sharon. Gee Mom, can't you even remember who you're yelling at? Hah! Little did I know that the curse would follow and even with just one child I still do something similar, only now it's something more like just out and out calling her by one of the dogs names. Silly short-circuited brain cells!

There's another sound that Mom used to make as I was growing up. It's the sound of a thick leather belt being doubled back on itself and snapped to make a loud smack. That sound was like the two-minute warning and when it was heard we knew that at least one of us five kids was in trouble. We'd start out with our backs to the wall hoping not to be the recipient of a tanned hide and sometimes use our two minutes to plan and scheme. Mind you, she never really did any damage, but it only took one spanking to instill the fear of that belt and usually just the sound of it was enough to stop us in our tracks!

This next Mom-speak is really a smell, but to me it represents my mom, so it belongs in this discussion. Mom was a coffee drinker and Dad preferred tea, probably because she is German and he is English-Irish. To this day the aroma of instant coffee always reminds me of Mom. Sometimes I drink it just for the memories. I kind of compare it to the instant dry milk we always had growing up. Sometimes we were lucky and she'd mix it with some real milk, but usually it was Carnation Instant Milk straight up!

Not what you expected, huh? Well you should know by now that I don't have a good memory for words, but can think in pictures. Now add smells to that memory bank and I have more subject matter to draw from.

I wonder what my daughter will always remember about my Mom-speak?

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Sunday, November 25, 2012

Colors of the season


Every time I walked past this display of color on my kitchen counter I got a good feeling. Weird, huh? I'm not sure if it's the red and green that remind me of all the pretty colors of Christmas or if it is the shiny red skin of those plump red bell peppers, but something just makes me feel good inside to look at them. This morning as the sun was shining on them through the kitchen window I just couldn't resist capturing them on my iPad's camera so I could hold on to that feeling long after they're gone. At $1.68 a piece I won't be buying many more of them until they're back in season. It'll be frozen peppers for us this winter!

So tell me, what colors make you get that warm and fuzzy feeling inside?

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Saturday, November 24, 2012

Getting ready for winter

The other day I noticed the corn on our squirrel feeders was disappearing. Not being eaten, mind you, but whole cobs were disappearing! Hmmm, is there a corn cob thief in the neighborhood? Nope, there's a smart squirrel getting ready for winter! I watched as she struggled to get a cob off the feeder, settling for only half as it broke in two pieces. When she disappeared from view I grabbed my trusty iPad and headed outside to track her down. Below is a collage of some of the things I found, including a huge nest up in the Pin Oak behind the house with our friend the squirrel laying on the branch trying to be so flat that she nearly disappeared in to the wood. You might need to click on the picture and zoom in a bit to see her inside the orange circle.


Witnessing this future mother's preparation for winter reminded me of some of the things we do around here. The most visible are the changing decorations that go from Halloween to Thanksgiving and as of today, Christmas. We now have beautiful lights out front and in the windows thanks to the other three residents of this home. I stayed inside where it was warm and did my own sort of nesting as I worked on curtains for Oliver's nursery and made another dinner in a pumpkin.

I've already done the annual changing of the clothes from summer to winter. Oh to have a closet big enough to hold more than one season! Better yet, how about one of those closets that rotate? I'll add that to my dream house list of "must haves!"

What do you do to prepare for winter?

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Friday, November 23, 2012

Hard words to say

Friday, November 23, 2012

What is the hardest word for you to say?

Here's another NaBloPoMo prompt that makes me dust out the cobwebs cluttering my brain and actually THINK. I can't think of a word that stands alone, but might be able to come up with a phrase. Let me think.... ****fhoooffff*** still trying to blow out those dust bunnies.....

Ok, so here's a word that in itself really isn't hard to say, but when taken in context as a permanent thing is difficult: GOODBYE

Why is it difficult? Have you ever had to say goodbye to a dying loved one or pet? That is when it's hard to say goodbye. It's that gut-wrenching, sickening finality with which one is forced to say that word through the tears while at the same time knowing that the person or pet is in severe pain and is passing on to a better place that makes it so difficult. Goodbye.... No don't go yet.... I love you... I'll miss you... Don't go yet... How will I live without you?..... I love you so much...... It's okay to go now.... Goodbye.......

In loving memory of Charmin and Tucker who will always be in my heart...

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Thursday, November 22, 2012

The last time I cried

Thursday, November 22, 2012

When was the last time that you cried? Why?

This is usually a tough question to answer, but this time it's a little easier. As I reflect on all that I have to be thankful for over the past year I have to say that the announcement of my daughter's pregnancy has to top them all! I'd like to say that it was what made me cry, but actually it was what prompted it, so that counts. The last outburst of tears was while reading my wishes for my niece and nephew's new baby at her shower. I was sitting next to my daughter who also broke down crying. It was a very special moment for the two of us as we got a brief glimpse in to our future. Here I am with my two sisters, niece and baby.

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Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Where do you like to read?

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Where is your favourite place to read?

Yesterday I told you that I can't remember book titles and today I'll confess that I simply don't do much reading. Well, not unless you include the countless blogs, online instructions for crafts and my daily dose of Guideposts. Really? Yes really! You see, I have this problem staying awake and find reading to be a trigger that tells my brain it's time to fall asleep. Even after I started taking pills for narcolepsy I still can't read much before dozing off. Yes, you can probably imagine how tough college was for me!

When I used to drive 30 minutes a day both ways to work I was able to check out book CDs from the library, so my car became my favorite place to read. Now with only 10 minutes of road time I don't do that anymore. I have, however, discovered podcasts and occasionally take this iPad with me on walks. So springs forth a new way of reading books. If only I could remember which app has The Hunger Games on it before it expires! Is there a search app on this little machine?

So what's YOUR favorite place to read and how do you do it?

Oh, here's a collage of Katie and Libby keeping the bed warm for me last night!

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Tuesday, November 20, 2012

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Talk about the opening of your favourite book.

I honestly don't have a favorite book. You know what came in to my head when I read the BlogHer NaBloPoMo prompt for today? "In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth." Genesis 1:1 NKJV

Yes, I've been thinking a lot about the miracle of life lately as I watch my grandson grow inside my daughter's womb. I am so blessed to have her living with us and have been enjoying getting to know my son-in-law better.

Getting back to books though, I've read my share of books, but am not the type of person who reserves a part of the brain for storing titles and authors for later retrieval, so even if I had a favorite book other than the Bible I couldn't tell you the name. Am I the only person like this? It's the same way with movies, although admittedly they are easier to remember than books. I can tell you that my most used books are those with usable pages, like cookbooks for instance. Oh, let's be honest, they're really the only books that get cracked open by me and that is going by the wayside now in favor of recipes on my iPad or printed from some awesome blog.

I found this great app called CamScan that let's you turn your iPad in to a scanner. Today I was messing around with some Penzey's Spices catalog pages just to see how it worked. This hot chocolate sounds pretty yummy, don't you think?

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Monday, November 19, 2012

My ideal place to get stuck

Monday, November 19, 2012

If you had to get locked in some place (book store, amusement park, etc) overnight alone, where would you choose to be locked in?

That is the NaBloPoMo prompt for today and didn't really take much thought because I wish I was there right now. A Luscious ten star spa (yeah ok, so maybe the stars don't go that high, but this is MY dream and I can have whatever I want!) this spa would come fully equipped with a staff of people to pamper me, bring me glasses of wine, fresh Holiday grapes, chocolate and strawberries or anything else I want. There'd be a steamy hot jacuzzi with soft music playing, warm oil massage and aromatherapy candles burning all over the place. AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

Now, back to reality. Tonight we meet the Doula that will be with my daughter and SIL before, during and after the birth of our grandson. Here's how we spent our time waiting.

I drooled over this recipe for Cheesy Garlic Basil Tilapia in the Penzey's spice catalog which uses all of my favorite ingredients. Hey if it's got garlic and basil I'm happy! And tilapia happens to be my favorite fish!
Emily and Matt were checking e-mail and reading weather blogs. We're still waiting for the long-term forecast for December.....

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