January 31, 2008

a day in the life

at school
pj day and pancakes
a new dress-up play area
i want to be doctor first

baseball pjs and a doctor coat
silly for a doctor
to come to work in his pjs
he laughed

an afternoon with grandma
called to hear his voice
asked if he had fun at school
you betcha, he replied

got wind of drama
but luckily it blew right passed
my whirlwind of drama
although it was precariously close

a cell phone at fault
and mean words exchanged by text message
forwarded from one to another
until it came full circle

sixth grade is too young
to have a cell phone
liabilities far greater than benefits
my opinion only

work seems crazy
for my better half
do i ask lots of questions
or leave it alone?

sometimes leaving it at the door
and finding rest at home
is better than talking about it

but how can we understand each other
if we aren't on the same page?
a constant struggle for me
between too much and too little

the fog stays at bay
i try to remind myself
not to go looking for it
and by doing so,

life is good

January 30, 2008

wordless wednesday

from the high school yearbook...

January 28, 2008

question and answer #2

Time to finish up this question and answer thing. Here are the last questions...

I answered a question from Barb at A Chelsea Morning in my last post. She also had another question:
I know you've lived in Ohio all your life except for a brief time in Kentucky when you were in college. Have you ever dreamed of living anywhere else and if so, where and why?

I am going to combine my answer with this question from DK from A Flyover Blog:So, tell me what your "perfect vacation" looks like.

I dream of blue water. Anywhere. I love it. It speaks to my soul every time. Last summer, we took a trip to Put-in-Bay, Ohio. It's an island on one of the Great Lakes. I posted about it here (with pictures!). I really felt like I was home when I was on that island. I even took a couple pictures of my favorite house on the island. Sometimes when I'm having a really stressful day, I dream of being on the shore of that water and things melt away. The only thing I would change about that trip to make it my "perfect vacation" would be to stay somewhere with a bed. We camped and while I love camping, I'm not as young as I used to be. My dream is to one day have a home on the island. On the other hand, I also dream of living near Chicago. I think it's a cool city and it has blue water too - what a great combination! I've spent many moments at the end of the Navy Pier, soaking up the peace of the blue water. Both places are dear to my heart.

Diane from Diane's Place asked:
If your house was on fire and you could only save one thing, what would it be? People and pets are a given, so I'm speaking of material things here.

It's hard to come up with just one thing. I mean, I'm not all that materialistic but our worlds do seem to be full of stuff, ya know? My thoughts gravitate towards things that can't be replaced, like pictures, letters, keepsakes. I'm so glad that the digital era is upon us because it's easier to save those kinds of things. I thought about saying my laptop because who knows what all I have saved on here that I don't want to lose. But then I figured if I don't know I have it on here, it probably isn't all that important, huh? And then it hit me - I've been keeping a journal since the day after my wedding to Handsome. It's spotty in some places. It kind of tapers off once I started blogging but it covers almost five years of my family's day to day life. That's something my great-grandkids might enjoy reading someday. My own kids may even like to see it. I often go back and read it myself. So, long story short, I would save my journal.

I really appreciate you ladies asking questions. I enjoyed this little exercise. :) Hope you learned something new about me. Have a great week!

January 25, 2008

friday's feast #177 (#21)

Click on the picture above to learn more about Friday's Feast or to read other's responses.

How many times per day do you usually laugh?

At least once, sometimes more. Usually because of something my husband or my kids have said or done.

What do your sunglasses look like?

At the moment, I have the sunglasses that attach to my glasses. And I don't like them at all! Eventually, I'd like to go back to contacts so I can get a non-prescription (aka cheap) pair of sunglasses that I like.

You win a free trip to anywhere on your continent, but you have to travel by train. Where do you go?

I wouldn't mind going just about anywhere by train. I think I would like it. I've heard that Colorado has some pretty train rides, and also Canada. I think traveling by train would be part of the adventure. I would do my best to make the actual ride a big part of the trip.

Main Course
Name one thing you consider a great quality about living in your town/city.

There is a lot of history in our city and I think that is a great thing. But I guess the best quality would be the professional baseball team. My husband and I have been lifelong fans. Opening Day is a holiday around here - seriously.

If the sky could be another color, what color do you think would look best?

I'm partial to a blue sky - blue as far as you can see. And it's even better if it meets some blue water on the horizon. But if I have to pick another color, I guess I would say pink. See the picture in my header for the reason why. :)

I'll be back in the next day or so to finish the question and answers from last week. Have a good weekend!

January 21, 2008

question and answer #1

I've been reading all the answers of the others who have agreed to take questions and I'm amazed at the honesty. I never started blogging in search of friends. I did it to journal my kids' childhoods, to vent frustration, to prove to myself that God is ever-present, and to connect to my family. But as I read all the answers, my realization is that I do have friends "out there". And no matter where life takes me or how long I go without a post of my own, they are still there. What a blessing that is to me! When I threw my hat in the ring for this question and answer thing, I didn't know if I'd get questions or not. But some of you showed up - and asked questions! And if you haven't asked yet, it isn't too late!

Here goes with round one...

Leave it to my good friend, Barb, to pose a thought-provoking question. Actually, it has caused me days of contemplation - which is not necessarily a bad thing. I just want to make sure I say what I want to say in the right way. Her (first) question is this:
I know you struggle with depression. It was pretty obvious when I first met you but it seems a lot less obvious now. So is it safe to say you're winning that battle?

Ah, Barb, but it is a war. I call it that because it is a series of battles, one by one, day by day. It's interesting that I call it a war because that's what I call my divorce from my ex-husband. It really wasn't a war in the sense that we destroyed each other, well more than a divorce already does. My friend and I joke about material things that must have gotten lost "in the war". It's around the time of "the war" when I really started being affected by depression. I'd had postpartum depression, but then again, I was barely 20 and had a new marriage and a new baby. Just a few changes... I bounced back but by the time the war came around, I was pretty battle weary.

The happy news is that the short answer to Barb's question is yes, I'm winning. But if you will indulge me, I'd like to give you the long answer. It's a mighty powerful testament to the goodness of Jesus.

I think that each of us is wired with an internal gauge of happiness. Let's face it, some people are just happy, and some are just not. While I think of myself as a happy person, I feel as if I have walked around, most of my life, with the Eeyore cloud over my head. I don't know if I feel things more deeply than most or if I am just less adept at handling those emotions/feelings. Whatever it is, there is a depth there that remains. It is in this depth that the feelings of depression, or my fog, comes about. I don't know if my soul is contemplating the issues at hand (or even past issues) or if my heart is taking time to process things, I honestly don't know. I guess if I knew, I wouldn't have this problem.

To counter this, I feel like I have been blessed with the gift of faith. By this I mean that I never question that things will work out to the good of God. I mean, during the whole two years that our old house was on the market, I never once questioned what God was doing. Well, I questioned how we'd make those two mortgage payments a couple of times, but through it all, I knew it would be okay. My gut feeling was peace. It really makes little sense to me that I usually have a great feeling of faith, a feeling of peace and the fog still consumes me. It's just the process of getting to the place where God shines through that gets me down, I guess.

With all that said, I'm doing a couple of things that have helped me. The first is that I am trying daily to read something from the Bible. Hearing God's words spoken in my mind reminds me to focus on things eternal and not the things of this world. That is such a help. Knowing that God is always with me helps me find the balance and gives me the orientation I need to find my way around the fog. I have also become involved in a Bible Study and between the ladies and the studying, I am finding it very helpful as well.

Prior to blogging, I kept a journal. Once I began blogging though, I no longer wrote in my journal. And being that this whole blog thing is not so private, I tended to censor what I was saying. It's hard to really hash through your feelings when you are censoring yourself. So, instead of turning here, to my blog, when I needed to write my way out of a fog, I've started keeping a journal type document on my computer. That's part of the reason I haven't blogged as much. Sometimes all my creative writing juices are exhausted by the time I get to blogging. But I've found my emotional footing again - and life is good.

Whew. I'll be back soon to answer more... :)

January 19, 2008

i wanna play!

Barb, Bev, Diane, Sarah, and a whole bunch of others have decided to take questions from fellow bloggers and then answer them. This idea originated from another blogger named Meredith. Boy, I bet she didn't realize what a chain reaction this would have.

I've been contemplating joining the "game". I figure I won't have anyone ask me anything because I took so long of a break that lots of people - as in the 2 or 3 that come by regularly :) - stopped reading. But after reading some of the others' questions and answers, it looks like fun! So even if I only get one question, I'm throwing my hat in the ring.

So here goes - got any questions for me? Come on, I know you have something you want to ask.

I'll be back soon to answer all of the questions that are going to pour in. LOL :)

January 18, 2008

friday's feast #176 (#20)

After a brief hiatus (okay, 21 of these have passed by without my participation...), I'm glad to be able to do a Friday's Feast! Click on the picture above to find out more or to check out others answers to today's feast. Here goes...

What is your favorite beverage?

My favorite beverage is probably peach Propel or Wild Cherry Pepsi. But seeing as how both of those are are my no-no list (for medical reasons), I settle for water or decaf hot tea. Nothing beats a hot cup of tea on a cold winter day!


Name 3 things that are on your computer desk at home or work.

Well, I use a laptop and the laptop lives on an end table in our family room. On the end table is a box of stationary, a stack of books to be read, and a lamp. Boy, that's boring. :)

On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being highest), how honest do you think you are?

Probably a 9. Not a 10 because I just can't tell that lady with the really funky haircut that it's awful when she asks. But other than those kinds of cases, I try really, really hard to be honest. Life is too short to be any other way. Besides, God calls us to be honest. That's the least I can do.

Main Course
If you could change the name of one city in the world, what would you rename it and why?

This one is really hard for me. I mean it took ALL of the nine months (and really, it's ten months, but who's counting, right?) to name my son. I guess I would rename Put-in-Bay, Ohio (even though I think that place already has a cool name). I would rename it Manna. The blue water there was such a blessing to me. The whole island made me just slow down inside. I wish I could live there. It quenched a deep thirst in my soul and made me feel really close to God. I'm sure the people who received the manna from heaven felt really close to God and taken care of by Him. What a cool feeling!

What stresses you out? What calms you down?

I get really stressed out when the house is cluttered. I know that sounds trivial but it does. I am also stressed out when someone close to me is hurting. I have a really big heart and sometimes that isn't a good thing. Well, I mean, it is a good thing - it just makes me feel things more deeply than some and that can be stressful.

I am calmed by blue water. By blue water, I mean lake water or the ocean. We live by a river and it is mud brown. That doesn't do it. My favorite blue water is found at the end of the Navy Pier in Chicago. And the water surrounding Put-in-Bay, Ohio. I am also calmed down by reading. Escaping to another world for a little bit always helps.

January 16, 2008

a taste of the lone star state

Since I'm playing catch-up here on the blog, I thought I'd post some pictures I promised way back when. November found my husband and I in Texas. He had to travel for business and thanks to some frequent flier miles from his buddy, I got to go too! He's been to Texas a few times for work but this was my first time there. Actually, it's the farthest west I've ever been. I really loved it - the weather was awesome! I wish we would have had time to go to west Texas but it was a jam-packed trip as it was. Maybe next time...

We flew into Dallas but immediately got on a connecting flight to San Antonio. My friend's daughter just moved there a few months ago and we stayed a few nights with them. The first thing we did was check out the San Antonio Riverwalk in downtown San Antonio. It was the coolest thing. Here is a picture one of the many outdoor restaurants available. It was so peaceful to me, but then again, I do have a thing for water.

Then we went to the Alamo, which is also in the middle of downtown San Antonio. Actually, we took a Segway tour first. I was going to post pictures of us doing that but we looked like morons with our helmets on. It was a wonderful way to see a lot of San Antonio in a short amount of time though. We really enjoyed ourselves. The tour guide was very informative. He took us along another part of the Riverwalk and also to the Tower of Americas Observation Deck building. He also took us through the historical King William neighborhood. Some beautiful houses! I would have taken pictures but we were flying by on the Segways! :) So anyway, back to the Alamo...It was really neat but kind of creepy to me. I don't know why.
I guess I should tell you that my husband has two main objectives when site-seeing. History and baseball parks/stadiums. Well, stadiums in general. I tell him that as long as they have a gift shop, I'm good. :) Here is the first of a few stadiums we saw. This one is where the AAA minor league team, Round Rock Express, plays. They are owned by Nolan Ryan. It was a newer facility and they gave us the run of it. We walked in and the lady running the store was originally from our hometown! We were far from home so this was a surprise for sure!

Day two - AUSTIN
Then it was off for a little more history. We went to the Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library on the University of Texas campus. I love history of the First Ladies so this was a treat for me. Especially once I saw the handwritten letter from my favorite First Lady, Jackie Kennedy Onassis. No matter what your political opinions, anytime you have the opportunity to go to a Presidential library, GO. Take your family. It's an American thing to do. It was awesome. We plan to seek out more to go to. (By the way, they were working on the plaza of the library so that's why there are tarps and the like in the picture.)

And of course, since we were within walking distance of the University of Texas stadium, we just HAD to have a look. :)
Then, it was on to the State Capitol Building. I'm ashamed to say that before I married my husband, I didn't even know states had capitol buildings. But they do. We've been to the one in our own state and it was really neat. So, going to this one was a treat for me too. Lots of history here. I love to see how things were constructed in another time and another place. This building was actually planned as the city was planned so it fits in really neatly. Again, I recommend going. But get there before 5, because although the doors are open after that, there isn't much going on and NO one is around.
The inside of the dome. Isn't that beautiful?
We had dinner at this really neat place that's been there for years. It was called Threadgill's World Headquarters Restaurant, formerly Armadillo World Headquarter where lots and lots of famous people have come to sing. There was live music that night which was neat. I wish we would have stayed longer. Handsome tried to get me to stay but I didn't.

Day three - JOHNSON CITY
We headed towards Dallas on day three. Along the way, we stopped by Lyndon B. Johnson's childhood home. It's actually an exact replica that LBJ had built in the exact location. Pretty interesting. It wasn't far from LBJ's ranch but we didn't have time to make it over that way.
Somewhere along the way on that third day, we stopped at the Koffee Kup. Wonderful pie. I mean, wonderful! We also ate at a place called the Blue Bonnet Cafe in Marble Falls and I think that was on day three too. I don't know. If I looked at a map, I could tell you because it was all on the way to Dallas. The Blue Bonnet was cool. One of those hole in the wall places that's been around forever. I felt like I was in a movie or something. Same thing with the Koffee Kup.
Day four - DALLAS
We made it to Dallas on day three but it was way past bedtime when we got there! The next morning, we went to Dealey Plaza and the Book Depository Building. I got a creepy feeling there. I guess I never thought much about that time in history. I mean, I know tons about Jackie but being there was surreal. It affected me more than I ever thought it would.

Dealey PlazaCan you believe that they paint a white "x" in the road where the car was when he was shot? It gave me goosebumps. More than 40 years later and still an "x" marks the spot.
Acting on a suggestion (thank you!), we went to the Fort Worth Stock Exchange. This was so really interesting! Lots of shopping, some restaurants, and just the history of it all. Oh, and the cattle drives...
Every day of the week, they have a cattle drive twice a day. It was Sunday when we were there so there weren't that many, but that didn't stop one of them from wandering away. He came right up to us and just before he stepped up on the sidewalk to join us, a cowgirl came flying in and got between him and us. I wasn't that scared but there were some guys around us that were. Speaking of horns, you aren't going to believe what I did...
Look at me! Fat rolls and all. The way you have to sit in a saddle makes you thrust your gut forward, so there I am. This was one BIG boy. I am rather short and I almost didn't make it up there! What an adventure - I mean, do you SEE those horns?I have no idea what day but I'm sure my better half could tell you - ARLINGTON
We stopped by the Rangers Ballpark but they were closed. He did get his baseball though because the store was open. (For every park we visit, he buys a baseball for his collection. He's got a bunch!)
A bigger picture of the ballpark in Arlington.
And somewhere along the way, we saw Dr. Pepper Ballpark in Frisco, Texas. I don't know who plays there...
We also saw the Dallas Mavericks arena (and sat in the season opener game traffic) and we saw the Dallas Cowboys Stadium. My husband was one happy camper! We were in Dallas because my husband was meeting up with the guy he works with down there. We went to dinner with him and his wife. They are the nicest folks! I forget the name of the restaurant but it was really good Mexican food. My husband will remember the name - he's good like that. :)

The next day, he went on to Houston for business meetings and I flew home. It took five cities but I finally made it home. We landed once to pick up more people, then I had a connecting flight, and then I had to drive home from the final airport. It was a long trip but so worth it! I'm so envious of you Texans. I loved it! But I have one question...where was all the country music in Austin? I thought there'd be tons but I never did see it.

So, I don't blog for more than a month and then you get this MEGA post. Well, better late than never, I guess. :) Thank goodness for the interweb or I would never have remembered some of this stuff!


it is calming down
around here
the tree was put out
to the curb
the ornaments wrapped
and stored for another year
the few decorations
taken down
except for the mini stockings
that i forgot
well, and the christmas cards
that i put all along
our bay window

school has resumed
we are settling back into
our normal routine

it snowed here again
this morning
but the afternoon sun
melted it away
much to little man's dismay

you know, it's strange
in december
i felt way too busy
with going here and buying that
and being involved
in the church traditions
that i didn't feel like i had time to blog

now, it's slowed down so much
that this has to be the most boring
post i have ever done

but truly i feel blessed
i've seen busy and chaotic and crazy
i'll take boring anyday

happy new year everyone!

January 15, 2008

changing things up

thought maybe with the new year
i needed a new look

how original, right?

still working on it
but i'll be back :)

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