Thursday, September 30, 2010

Hopes and Dreams for the Future Day 30 Blogging Challenge

Ok...just in case it doesnt happen in the next 365 days (as posted above), winning the lottery would be really nice. Other than that, I want my family to be happy and healthy in every way. I want my children to grow up being healthy, confident, and productive citizens. I want to have a good retirement after spending years in my soon to be new career in which I had helped many people. I want to maintain contact with friends that mean and have meant a whole lot to me. I want to live a physically healthy lifestyle that I am able to maintain. I want to write a book.

I want to travel far and wide. I want to travel with some good friends and see cool stuff together. I want to go back to Edinburgh, where I h ave roots and take my brother and maybe my mother with me. I want to visit Sweden where I also have roots, with my brother and mother.

I want to contribute significantly to the problem of pet overpopulation, pet homelessness, pet abuse, and abandonment. I want to see things get better there.

Thats all...nothing much:)

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Hopes and Dreams for the next 365 Days-Day 29 Blog Challenge

First and foremost in this would be stuff involving my kids. I hope and dream that they would continue to feel secure where they are at. I hope that my daughter will learn to shut her mouth when she shouldn't be talking and think about the things she says BEFORE she says them. I hope that A continues to improve on the lying thing (and I don't mean become a BETTER liar, but not do it at all!), I wish L would stop putting things in his mouth...he's 11 not 1.

I wish and hope that my husband and I would learn to become really physically healthy people by changing our habits, eat less and exercise more. I hope that our family, to include extended be very healthy and happy for the next year at least.

I wish Rocky the Monster Puppy would stop trying to eat everything and that the three other dogs would forget how to bark at the wind and everything else outside.

I wish and hope that I can figure out what it is I want to be when I grow up, so when I start on my Masters in six months, I'll have a clearer direction.

I wish and hope that I become stronger in my faith and a more spiritual person; doing what I'm supposed to do and not do those things that I'm not supposed to do and that my relationship with the Lord grow more.

I wish that this internship I am starting will turn into an awesome job of some sort...I guess that's more of a dream.

As long as I'm speaking of dreaming....winning the lottery would be really nice.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Playing Catch Up with the Dropped Ball I have dropped the proverbial ball on the blog challenge. But hey, I made it 21 days! It was finals for school though, and then a much deserved mini vacay, so I didnt have time really. BUT...Im making it up. Right here, right now.

Day 22- A Website: Ok here is the website,  that consumes some of my down time, which until now, hasnt been a whole lot. Webslueths is where I go to indulge in my hobby of delving into missing person cases and unsolved murders. And no, Im not revealing my screenname there. So there.

Day 23- This is where I really drop the ball. I havent been a real you tuber, because I just dont have time for one more I dont have a video to share. Theres one where the rednecks try out a bullet proof vest on one of their redneck friends...they actually SHOOT this guy in the chest to see if the vest works. Yeah.....but I couldnt get it to download on this computer, so you are just going to have to take my word for it.

Day 24- Where I live. If I told you that Im afraid I would have to kill you. No, I live in what is considered High Desert, there are a lot of real "cowboys and indians" here. A huge world famous rodeo takes place nearby every year. We have a  huge mexican population, which I happen to like because I love their food and we have some fantastic Mexican restaraunts  here. Besides Ive spent quite a bit of time over the years in their country and I have a respect for them.  There are antelope, coyotes, curlews, cougars, and ground owls to just name a few of the wildlife that is here. Oh, and part of the gorge of the huge river that flows houses big curly horned Big Horned Sheep. There are tons of rednecks here too, that amuse me quite a bit...and no, I am not one of them. I wasnt born and raised her, I landed her about seven years ago. The town is small, the school is small and good, and I kind of like it here. Although I have to drive about 40 miinutes to go shopping anywhere except W@lm@rt.. ...which I try to avoid like the plague.

Day 25-My Day in Great Detail- Ok since this was supposed to be done of Saturday, I'll think about that day and talk about it. This will be fun because I was smack dab in the middle of a mini vacay. The hub and I woke up in our hotel room at about eight O clock in the big city we were in and went downstairs to the lobby for their "continental breakfast" which didnt have much of anything. I did grab a yoghurt and coffee of course. We went back up to the room and showered, packed and  went downstairs with our bags. The valet retrieved our car and we were on our way. We were still hungry so we swung by Mickey D's and got a bfast sandwhich. We drove or I should say the hub drove, a couple of hours to the coast. We got to the coastal town and called the friends we were meeting. They were a little bit away still, so we drove around and looked at all the houses and people, and found the hotel we were going to be in. We had to use the bathroom (hey, it said great detail), and after that we went and looked out the balcony of the lobby. When we were done with that we turned around and saw our friends coming through the lobby door. We gave hugs and said hi. We were all hungry for lunch so after we checked in we went downtown for lunch.  They recommended a pizza place. I was going to have a slice of pepporoni pizza, as was my husband, but they only had one left. My hubby was going to eat the pineapple, ham, and jalenpeno combination of the day, instead, but I know how much he loves pepporoni, so I ate the pineapple, ham, and jalepeno pizza. We also had a salad with our pizzas and I had an ice tea, unsweetened. We ate and visited with our good friends which we hadnt seen in a couple of years.

After that we all went to a huge antique store. My friend and I ended up cracking up over a very bizare and slightly disgusting childrens' book, which of course, I had to buy. She bought a huge old poster size add for Del Monte canned corn. It was just a picture of a huge can of corn that boasted:
"Family Size in Liquid". It cracked us up too...especially walking around town with that under her arm. We went to another antique mall and she found a camera sold in the 1939 NY world's fair (she collects things from that), and I bought a square Walt Disney drinking glass (I have a collection at home).  We walked around and did more shopping...until our feet started to hurt and we were thirsty. Three of us walked to the room, stashed our treasures and walked back to the restaurant where my hub was holding a table. We had a drink and an appetizer and chatted some more.

After this, we went to the actual ocean and looked at it for a while and visited. I think this is when we went into the huge candy shop where the hub and I spent $61.00. Yeah, a bit ridiculous, but we bought fudge and chocolate covered twinkies to share and a bunch of salt water taffty for the kids and freinds at home. We went back to the hotel, lounged around, talked and listened to Pink Floyd. When it was dinner time, we went to a seafood restaraunt, where I had chicken alfredo (Im very picky about what sea food I will eat), which was VERY good. After dinner we went back to the hotel and more talking and laughing ensued. We talked about all kinds of things that I dont dare mention here, most of it was reminiscing about or wild teenage/early adult year antics, which my friend and I were involved in together. can just imagine. We were very interesting to say the least. Then at about mid night or so, we went to sleep (it was a suite, so each couple had their own rooms).

Day 26-Week in Great Detail: Im pretty much skipping this one, this post is long enough. Pretty much my week consisted of pulling my hair out trying to finish my last week of school, selling popcorn for cubscouts, getting ready for the mini vacay, and getting the kids ready to stay with a friend and with grandma while we were gone.

Day 27-Worst Habit: I guess, its caring what people think. I dont know why I do....most of them suck anyway. Oh and messing with my head and hair, drives the hub crazy. My head doesnt itch or anything, its just a habit...keeps my hands busy I guess.

Day 28-Whats in My Handbag: Hey this is, so Im caught up: Im thrilled too that I cleaned my handbag out when we got back from the coast. That could have been slightly embarrasing. Instead, it will probably be sllightley boring. it is:

My wallet (red in color);a bottle of Midol (survival item); Feminie Hygeine products (sorry if there are any dudes reading, but thats reality); sunglasses (black); Chap-Ex lip balm-Tahitian Tangerine; a petsm@rt pet perks card key chain thing; tube of lipstick "Amethyst Shimmer" color; nail clippers; lotion-Rosehips and Lavender (from the hotel)-smells really good; my hairbrush; my phone; sticky notes; Tums; a pen; a Luna lemon zest "hole nutrions bar for women" that my friend gave me incase we were out and about and didnt want to stop shopping to eat but felt a tad hungry; and a couple of loose gummy bears rattling around in the bottom of my bag, which I am now throwing away.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

A Recipe-Day 21-Blog Challenge

Im choosing the following recipe because its one that I just got and I think its wonderful and pretty easy (if you dont think that letting bread rise for a million hours is hard, I mean you can DO other things while its rising).

A co worker gave this to me and she swore by it. I decided to try it because I love homemade bread (without a bread machine, thank you). I love the way the dough feels, I love the way it smells when its cooking, and I love the way it tastes when you pop it your mouth all warm with butter slathered on it. Thats good stuff. It really was easy, and it really was good. My hubby, who isnt as thrilled about bread as I am (he likes it sure, but he's not a freak about it like I am) even ooohed and aahed and couldnt quit eating it. Kids liked it too, but they are bread lovers as well.


1/4 tsp active dry yeast
11/2 cups warm water
3 cups all purpose flour, plus more for dusting. You may use white, whole wheat, or a combination of the two (which is what I did).
11/2 tsp salt
Cornmenal or wheat bran for dusting

In a large bowl, dissolve yeast in water. Add the flour and salt, stirring until blended. The dough will be shaggy and sticky. Cover bowl with plastic wrap. Let the dough rest at least 8 hours preferably 12 to 18 at room temperature...about 70 degrees.

The dough is ready when its surface is dotted with bubbles. Lightly flour a work surface and place dough on it. Sprinkle it with a little more flour and fold it over on itself once or twice. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and let it rest for about 15 minutes.

Using just enough flour to keep the dough from sticking to the work surface or to your fingers, gently shape it into a ball. Generously coat a clean dish towel with flour, wheat bran or cornmeal (I used corn meal). Put the seam side of the dough down on the towel and dust with more flour, bran, or cornmeal. Cover with another towel and let rise for about 1 to 2 hours. When its ready the dough will have doubled in size and will not readily spring back when poked with a finger.

At least 20 minutes before the dough is ready, heat oven to 475 degrees. Put a 6-8 quart heavy covered pot such as cast iron (this is what I used), enamel, pryrex or ceramic, in the oven as it heats. When the dough is ready, carefully remove the pot from oven, and lift off the lid. Slide your hand under the towel and turn the dough over into the pot, seam side up. The dough will lose tis shape a bit in the process, but thats OK. Give the pan a firm shake or two to  help distribute the dough evenly, but dont worry if its not perfect; it will straighten out as it bakes.

Cover and bake for 30 minutes. Remove the lid and bake another 15 to 20 minutes, until the loaf is beautifully browned. Remove the bread  from the dutch oven and let it cool on a rack for at least 1 hour before slicing.

Yeild: One 1 1/2 pound loaf.
Adapted from the New York Times

 So, my friend throws in a handful of sunflower seed (shelled already, of course) into the dough. I was going to do this but I forgot to get the seeds. Im doing it next time though. The only problem with this recipe is its gone very soon after its is so good.

Monday, September 20, 2010

A Hobby of Mine...Day 20 Blogging Challenge

Ok, I think most of my hobbies have been discussed on here before. I like put things into my face...I like to read....I like to cook, particularly to bake. I like to swim and do all manners of water type things. I like dogs. I like to scrapbook, I like TV and movies.  You know...all the usual stuff

One hobbie, however that I dont really discuss much of at all here and is really kind of personal to me is my fondness for missing people and unsolved murder cases. Particularly, I am a psychology freak. I love trying to figure people out that do hideous things, in particular. Yeah, Im a bit strange. I will admit that much. I watch a lot of Nancy Grace (or used to before she started focusing so much on spoiled celebraties), and a lot of Investigation Discovery. I like to read true crime books. I can keep my self awake at night trying to figure out where Haleigh Cummings or Kyron Horman are. What Casey Anthony is exactly...stuff like that. The Jon Benet Ramsey case, as well as the Jacob Wetterling, Gabriel Johnson, and Trenton Duckett cases all bug the crap out of me. Same with missing adult cases.....those are really strange. Do people really just take off more than we think they do? Where do they all go? Is the sex slave industry so huge and protected by influencial (read Government or owners of corprate monsters, if you wish....) people that they just are allowed to exist? Scary thought. These people have to be somewhere. And someone KNOWS what happened to them. We truly do walk amongst monsters......

I can and do sometimes spend days on the computer researching and reading about various cases. I am a websluether and am a member of that website (blog entry coming soon).  Sometimes it consumes me too much, which is why I keep it kind of private, well....until now that is. The kitty is out of the proverbial bag, I guess. Meow.

But really...WHERE are they and what HAPPENED to them and WHO is involved?

Haleigh Cummings

Kyron Horman

Jacob Wetterling

Gabriel Johnson

Trenton Duckett

Sunday, September 19, 2010

A Talent of Mine-Day 19 Blogging Challenge

My talent is that I have no talent. There.

No? Ok....umm mumm mummm (the sound of me thinking)

How does one know when one is talented? When they can do something most people can't, or when they can do something better than average? Im going with the latter on this.

Apparantly I write a pretty good paper for school. I tend to get As on most of them. Does that take talent, or does it just mean Im sick somehow? I dunno. Im a great swimmer. I can do a mean butterfly stroke. My husband tells me I do it very well.

I can make a mean Tiramusu and great chicken enchiladas

I can draw better than average. I havent done so in a very long time though.
Im usually good with dogs, especially when they are dogs that are of one of the people pleasing breeds.  It just so happens that mine are not. Mine are of one of the few "I could care less what you want" breeds.

Im great at sleeping, drinking coffee, and eating chocolate, and.....

being stupid and silly, and wasting huge amounts of time. At those things, I am the champion of the world.

My Wedding-Day 18 Blogging Challenge

Ok so I get to brag here. Not about my wedding per se, because that in itself was pretty uneventful, extremely simple, and quick, but what happened during the weekend we got married. This is one of those times that I wish I wouldn't keep forgetting to buy a scanner, because pictures would be nice in this case, and it was before digital cameras were really that common. I certainly didnt have one.

Anyway, T and I got married in Reno. It is not the first marriage for either of us. Reno is where both his children were born, and he is a gifted gambler and loves to do it, and I had never been there, so we went.
We were supposed to stay in a room at the El Dorado. We got there and they didnt have our room. T is also gifted at getting people to compensate for something they screwed up on; pretty much because he wont just say "oh thats OK" like Im apt to do, because I can be a push over sometimes.

Anyway, they didnt have any other regular rooms left so the clerk just sighed and said that she really wasnt supposed to this but.....

and handed him a key (well...card actually). On the way to the elevator he turned to me and said:

"Im thinking we just scored big time....if its how I remember..." and we proceded to the top floor.

We got to out of the elevator and there was no where to go but through some double doors that we had to use our card on. It led us down a hall way and to our room. Our room with double doors. We opened it and I almost fainted. The clerk had given us a corner penthouse suit on the top floor. It was huge and one whole wall was a window looking over Reno and the hills. It had a TWO huge big screen tv mounted on the wall, a full kitchen and marble top bar. The bar was in front of the big window so you could sit on the stools and look out while having a drink. It had a full living room, a huge dining room and up two steps was a platform with a big hot tub...right in front of the window, so you could soak and enjoy the view. On the other side of the hot tub area, was steps leading down to a small area with a tv and DVD player and another couch. Through those doors was a huge bedroom with another TV and entertainment system and off the bedroom was a glass and marble shower, the biggest shower I have ever seen, and then the huge vanity/sink area. Off that through another door was the toilet. There was also a small bathroom off the dining room area.

I know that my description doesnt do it justice...lets put it this way....they only let VIPs (like celebrities) stay in that penthouse usually...and here we were. We kept expecting them to come up at any minute and kick us out. But they didnt. They even delivered the paper to our door every morning and supplied us with thick heavy plush robes.

(You can see the words "El Dorado" in pink at the top...our room was the top row inthe right hand corner...that black space was the window I was referring to. )

We played a little trick on my brother when he got to the hotel. We met him in the lobby and after securing his luggage in his room we invited him up to our room for a drink. He was impressed and a bit skeptical so we had to tell him what happened, because there is no way we could have afforded a room like that. He had brought us In and Out Burger (  from Los Angeles where he lives, so we sat at our marble bar, ate and oohed and aahed out the window.

The next day we got married at one of those little chapels by some lady. It was really quick and informal, but a lot of fun. My brother even threw rice or something at us. T showed us around the city and we did some sightseeing in the surrounding areas like the old mining town of Virginia City, and also took us around Tahoe. We hung out at the El Dorado and other casinos watching dualing piano players and also went to another piano bar where we exhausted the piano man with our requests. We had a blast.

T and I were in the hot tub in our room one night, with the curtains open staring out at all the pretty lights, when a helicopter flew by, hovering almost level  (or so it seemed) with our room, shining its bright light in at us. That was interesting....I hope the pilot enjoyed his view.

We got married in February, which is also when the West Minster Kennel Club Dog Show is on, and since it is my version of the superbowl, I watched it on both TVs in the living room area. For the life of me, I cant remember which breed won that year....and Im too lazy to look it up at the moment.

Anyway that was our wedding or the events surrounding our wedding. Now whenever we go somewhere I am secretly hoping that they screw up or room reservations.

Friday, September 17, 2010

An art piece...Day 17- Blogging Challenge-and a little message....

This is one of my favorites:

Edward Munch's The Scream. I have always liked the picture. Probably because it is how I feel sometimes...especially in the morning, or when Im dealing with GICOE. I had a coffee cup with this on it and I used it every morning. Until I broke it on accident, then I really felt that. It reminds me a little of Van Gogh's style; I thought this was Van Gogh before I learned different. I like Van Gogh...crazy guy who cuts off  his ear. Thats fun, isnt it? No?  

So, I was going to do this post on an old print we have hanging up in the house. Hub and I were on one of our antiquing road trips in New Hampshire and we found this old print in a very old but hand made frame. We thought the picture was interesting and it was old, so we bought it. We removed the dilapitated old frame (with no glass of course) and found that the news paper backing it was from 1898. Sweet...We got it reframed in a gorgeous custom frame and that is where it has been. I have tried and tried to find out who the artist is and what year the print was from exactly, but I havent been able to find it on the internet anywhere. Its a black and white print of a lady laying on her side inside a cave and she is reading a huge book, and lying next to her is a skull with a rose near it. Sound familiar to anyone? I wanted to post a picture of it here, but I ran out of time to take a picture of it and post it. Maybe I'll work on that soon and someone can finally put a name and an artist to the print. So for now The Scream is going to have to do.

I am taking off this afternoon for the mountain where we are having a women's retreat for church. Its a fun relaxing, and spiritual time where there is no computer service (or phone service-I think) so for the next two blogging challenge day 18 and 19 I will have to do when I get back. Take care!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

A Song That Makes Me Cry-Day 16 Blogging Challenge

I have a couple that make me cry. Most of them are songs we sing in church though. One song that isnt a church song that makes me cry is "Dust in the Wind" by Kansas. When my beloved cat Spock died, me and hubby were both pretty sad. Hubby buried him in the front yard flower bed, while I lay crying in bed.  When he was done he came in and sat on the bed next to me and we talked about the evil, but entirely lovable little bastard. Then we went downstairs to our family room (this was pre kids, so it was a little bar area that we entertained in-then it turned into a playroom) and hubby put a record on (yes, an actual record, we are collectors) and said:

This is for Naughterbee (one of many ridiculous nicknames we had for him). ...

and he proceeded to play "Dust in the Wind" and I started sobbing all over again. SO everytime I hear that song it makes me sad and I think of that day. So...moral of the story is if you have a song that you like, dont play it in rememberance of someone or something you love, because it will forever make you sad when you hear it.

Another song that can make me cry, but doesnt always is "Fire and Rain" by James Taylor. And when I hear "Your'e All I Need" by Motely Crue, I dont cry exactly but I feel really sad...its actually a very twisted song, but sad in its own wierd way, and the melody is beautiful haunting and sad at the same time.

In church when we sing "Refiner's Fire" I cry....and the old hym "How Great Thou Art"..gets me everytime. I will want that one played at my own funereal , I have long decided. But hopefully that wont happen for a very long time.....

RIP buddy.

(not actually him, but looks identical to him)

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Dream House-Day 15 Blog Challenge

OK this was fun. First off, I love old houses....southern plantation, Victorian, Gothic,Gothic -Victorian, doesn't much matter I love old houses with tons of character and perhaps a little history too. So my dream house would be a big ol' house of some sort...probably Gothic, or these:

I would do the inside in a combination of Gothic and modern. I would want some of the Gothic architecture to come through, but I wouldn't want it necessarily to have that cold feeling to it that some Gothic interiors can have. I found some pictures on the net here that kind of capture what I would want in my dream home.  Here is a Gothic kitchen that has been restored to reflect a more modern feel:

I would want a big ol' Gothic claw foot tub in my bathroom too...I mean a big one. It would have to have a shower in it too though for my family and friends who despise baths and insist on showers (can you believe people who don't like baths? -Hi J!!). Lots of little shelves and nooks to set candles in is a must have for a bathroom in my dream house...oh and a fish tank built into the wall would be nice. I got this picture here.
And I came across this bedroom that I would feel like I was in heaven in.....not real Gothic as it is, but a mix of this with some of the original Gothic architecture would be really nice...I don't think I would ever leave the bedroom.....
My dream house definitely includes a pool...and this would be perfect if it opened out onto a big balcony. Overlooking the ocean of course...on top of a cliff, with a nice safe path down to the water.....doesn't that sound nice. Of course the kids rooms would all be big enough, with great views as well. Perhaps with a giant video game wall in a playroom. Oh, and a library...what Gothic dream house would be complete without a library? Not mine. I would also have a dog room that opens up into the back garden with their own little safe fenced in area. A nice place for them to be in or out while we are gone. So, when can I move in?

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

A Non Fictional Book- Day 14 Blog Challenge

When I did the post on favorite books, many of my favorites are memoir type books. Most of the time that is what I perfer to read. I just got done reading the "Heroin Diaries" by Motley Crue bass player Nikki Sixx. Its non fiction and is taken directly from his diary during 1987-1988. The year I graduated  high school (1987).

I love this book and it has earned itself a place on my favorites shelf, and gets five stars (out of five). Its shockingly honest, as a diary would be. Its amazing that  he didnt cut anything out, because good heavens there is just some things that fall into "TMI" in it. It is as real as it gets. I knew rock stars lived a certain way, but honestly, even having that knowledge already, I was shocked by some of the things Sixx puts out there by publishing his diary.

I feel that anyone thinking about dabbling with drugs may change their mind after reading this book. I also feel that someone struggling with addiction may gain some insight as well, as Sixx touches on most of the excuses and feelings that are present when faced with the option of seeking help.

It takes a look into Sixx's childhood and the pain he feels from events in his childhood is as raw as it comes as he expresses it in his diary. From now on when I read a memoir I will wonder  how much more the author would be telling us if it were coming straight from a personal diary.

Occasionally Sixx lies to himself when he writes in his diary, but that is usually about drugs and it is plain to see that  his addiction is penning certain entries.

It also has writings in there, following some of the entries,  from the perspectives of people who were around Sixx at the time, and how they viewed his state at the time. Sixx himself also offers asides and clarifications on some of his writings as well, elaborating on some of the stuff that the diary does not make clear to an outsider.

Truly, fascinating stuff.

Monday, September 13, 2010

A Fictional Book-Day 13 Blog Challenge (Didnt we do this already?)

Well, I guess I will write about the current book I am reading. Im reading Menonite in a Little Black Dress.

So far, so good.

Do you know what the difference between Amish and Menonite is? Most Amish, the "old order" completely seperate themselves from the way others, like me, known as "the English" live. No phones, television, computers, cars, electric appliances, higher education etc. Menonites can have all that stuff if they want, except "old order Menonites". But, like the Amish, they are Anabaptists and tend to live rurally, with lots of kids and lots of animals, and are conservative, like the Amish in the way they dress. Both groups are extremely passive and do not care for ritual in their worship and the church services are very simple without a lot of flash, ritual, and religious icon. The menonites are heavy into volunteer work and mission work, where as the Amish perfer to keep to themselves. Basically Menonites are "Amish-lite".

I have a confession to make....I kind of sort of envy those people. The Amish especially. I mean its a lot of hard work, but its also a simpler life. I have always felt a little jealous of their family life and all the time they get to spend together because they arent involved in the rat race; they work together. All those delicious recipes-making everything from scratch. I would love to have the time to do that everyday. I would love to be totally self sufficient by growing and raising our own food.  We are a two income family and have become accustomed to certain things. If it were just me, well then....I could make the change. My hubby doesnt feel that way though. He raised pigs before for a while and he's not ever going back there again. Farming just wasnt his thing, I guess.

Im not thrilled about the clothing the women wear, because when its hot outside, I live in shorts or short skirts, capris and flip flops, or no shoes at all. I guess they just dont do that kind of thing. That part would suck. It would be nice though to not have to worry about what you wear because everyone is wearing the same thing. No striving to make sure your kids are in style, because it just doesnt matter in that community. There is an immense amount of freedom that comes from just that, I think. You could focus on the more important things in life; your family relationships, friendships nutrition, and spirituality. Really....what is more important than that? Nothing that I can think of. But when your are in this rat race the culture you are immersed in makes other things (like the latest movies, music, styles, fads, technology) important to keep up with. Imagine the freedom if nothing like that ever mattered. Wow.

I went to a menonites place once. They were selling a pop up trailer, and we were looking for one. They lived way out in a beautiful little spot...lots of kids running around, lots of animals running around, so peaceful really. But...I wasnt born into that culture and I guess its too hard for people to throw themselves into it; I have heard that it doesnt last for them when they try. Ill just have to be content with being an outsider, of being on the outside looking in through the pages of a book.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Something I am OCD about-Day 12 Blog Challenge

This is a hard one...I dont know even WANT to TALK about it.  Those commercials for the ASPCA about animal abuse. I cant STAND those. I know they are necessary in some way, but I cant stand to watch or hear them. I feel like my head and my heart will explode....if one starts I have to either cover my ears and bury my head in the couch so I cant see it. Or leave the room. AND I have to quickly do something else to get my mind off what I KNOW was just on the TV. I have to pace or listen to loud music or read...something else to get rid of it. I cant sit and watch tv or I will think about it.

Wierd? Yeah, I know.....honestly seeing those commercials makes me panic.

Oh and food in the refridgerator that may or may  not be expired. If it is one day past the expiration date, I will have to throw it out and this makes my hub mad. He says they can go a little beyond....I say they cant. Yuck.  Ive learned to live with that one though. ...the animal one? I cant get past that....I have nightmares and terrible haunting thoughts about the stories I have heard or seen on tv in the past. They play over and over in my head and I hate I have to go do something else..for real.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

A Photo of Me Recently-Day 11 Blog Challenge

Ok, so the challenge didnt specify that it had to be a good picture or even a clear picture of me. Just a picture that was taken recenty. Aaaand it didnt say HOW recent, right? Ok then. Get off my back. This photo is about two years old. The hub and I were going to Cabo for a surprise birthday of a friend of ours. Our friend had no idea that any of his friends were planning on going to Mexico with him and his wife. In fact, before he got to the airport he had no idea he was going to Mexico...just that he was going somewhere as a surprise. His wife had packed for him, so he truly had no idea. Anyway, so we between his wife and us we discovered that we were going to be on the same plane AND in the same row. We wanted to keep the surprise for as long as possible, so we decided (the hub and I) to wear disguises. Not that they would draw attention to us or anything. We just thought it would be funny, you know if he did notice us. Well he noticed us on the plane, not who we were but that there were a couple of freaks sitting across the isle from them. It was hard not laugh, and finally as he was looking at us, we took off the disguises. And indeed he was surprised. We laughed so hard all the way to Mexico.....

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Photo Taken Over 10 Years Ago of Me-Day 10 Blog Challenge

Me, year one.......

Heh, heh, look at the bottoms of my can tell I had been walking for some time before my first birthday (at 9 months), poor mother.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

OK...I Screwed Up...So Sue Me Already....

I have screwed the blogging challenge up. I posted two on one day, which means Im a day ahead. Crud. So the one I posted today was supposed to be posted tommorrow I wont post a blogging challenge item. I may post some other drivel though, if I happen to come up with anything.

A Photo I Took-Day 9 Blog Challenge

Im kind of proud of this picture that I took. I had taken a hundred shots of this church from the other side of it. From the side that you can see from downtown Puerto Vallarta and they were just ok...nothing special. Then we went to see Liz Taylor's and Richard Burton's house on this street. After the tour we decided to walk further down the street to unchartered territory for us, and low and behold, we could see THIS side of the church, framed by all the lovely flowers instead of a mob of vendors and people walking around. I was quite pleased...still am.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Photo that Makes me Sad-Day 8 Blog Challenge

Need I say more?

Random thoughts about Ratts in the shower

Do you ever have like the most random things pop in your head in the shower? I did today, only I guess it wasnt that random because it was triggered by something I was reading, but the memory was pretty random and something I havent thought about in like forever.....

This morning I was reading a couple of pages from Nikki Sixx's "Heroin Diaries" and he mentioned Robbin Crosby from the band Ratt and his freindship with  him and how he died from AIDS contracted from dirty needles. I was thinking about this as I showered because I remember hearing of Robbin's death and assumed the AIDS was from his promiscuous rock star lifestyle. It never crossed my  mind it was from dirty needles.

Anyway as I was thinking about him and Ratt, I remembered the one time I went for a younger man. I was in 10th grade and he was in the 9th, lol. He was a huge Ratt fan, and I really loved hanging out with this kid...we just connected. He was also going to my youth group at the time (a very short time) and we just really hit it off. We ended up going on a "date" although our parents didnt see it that way, Im sure.

We went to see Poltergiest 2 (I think-it may have been the first one, it was one of the two though). I remember eating a candy bar and going into the bathroom and throwing up for some reason. I remember his mom picking us up at the movies and dropping me off at my house.

I also remember that a week or so later, he broke my heart. He didnt want to "go out" anymore, he just wanted to be friends. He never really gave me an answer as to why. Now I strongly suspect his mom had something to do with it. And I can't say I blame her...I wouldnt want L "going out" with someone like me when he is ninth grade either! Im sure his mom thought he was a lot purer than he really was though. Thats the way it usually works.

Anyway, I had not thought about that in a long time. For as hurt as I was, it sure didnt matter to much as I grew up. Teenage angst sure sucks at the time, but eventually it fades away. Getting teenagers to understand that though is like pulling teeth. So I wanted to write this memory down somewhere so I can reflect back upon it when L is a teen (in a year and a half!) so I can remember how some of these things felt.

So now that Ive wasted a minute of your life you will never get back......can you remember a time of teenage angst that you thought you'd never get over, but did?

Monday, September 6, 2010

A Photo that Makes Me Happy-Day 7 Blog Challenge

Some might look at this picture and wonder why it makes me happy. Its just a picture of a  house with a sign on it and some balloons, right? So it appears....

However, the reason why this picture makes me happy is deeper than what you see when you look at it. This is a picture of our house on the very day that we brought our kids home forever. Our most wonderful and awesome adoption worker did this before we got home, and it was a very nice surprise.

My whole life I wanted kids....and finally, a dream came true. Finally. This picture is a picture of my dream coming true and what it looked like as I approached it. When the five of us walked through those doors we were home, together, as a family....forever.

Hello? Anybody out there?

It seems like the blog challenge and my answers have scared people away...its been a long time since I have had 0 comments for this many post in  a row.....where did everyone go? Bueller? Bueller?

5 A.M. ramblings of a mad woman...

...Its 5 A.M. on a Holiday and Im up. I must be out of my mind. I have a big paper to write for class today, so I figured I would try to make something "easy" for dinner. HA....its not easy if it requires getting up at the crack. Its crock pot baked beans, and after the beans had cooked for eight hours, I had to get up and mix the sauce stuff in it so it can cook another 10 hours. So, Im up. Dexter, my wire haired wiener is growling at nothing. He is protecting his chewie....even though NONE of the other dogs are around and even remotely interested in what he has...I guess it makes him feel better. Its making me grumpy though....I wish he would stop.

Okay in the middle of writing this, I discovered that one wiener (Carmen-the wiener princess) had not come in after I let them out to go potty. So, it had been about 15 minutes, and I was worried. I went out looking for her in the backyard (which isnt exactly small), in my robe and armed with a flashlight. Just about at the point I was going to panic, go get dressed and search the neighborhood frantically, I looked up and saw her looking out the sliding glass door at me. She was IN the house. Not sure how that happened, but I am losing it. Im sure my neighbors  think Im nuts.

Analyze this: I had a dream last night that I got my tongue pierced. It was pierced with a big yellow tongue ring (barbell actually-is it scary that I know that term?) and it was flavored. It taste like lemon. So even though my tongue hurt a little it tasted good. I was trying to go around talking with this thing and hiding it from my parents and people at work.

I think Ill go raid the candy jar and see if there is a piece of lemon hard candy in there. Then Im going back to bed.......Next up segment of the Blog Challenge. Later....

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Twenty of My Favorite Things-Day 6 Blogging Challenge

In absolutely no particular order what-so-ever....

1) My Family
2)Puppies (and dogs in general)
3)The wind
4)Thunder and Lightning Storms
5) The sound of rain against my windows and roof'
6) The smell of a wood fire
8)The ocean
10) Coffee
11) A good book
12) A hot bath
13) Laughing until I cry
14) Rock n Roll
15)Back massages
16) Spending time with great friends
17) Sleeping In
18) Dreaming
19) Getting lost in a good TV show or movie
20) Traveling

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Favorite Quote (s) -Day 5 Blogging Challenge

Ok my favorite quotes come from a dude who walked the earth a very long time ago......

"You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets"- Jesus

"So whatever you wish that others would do to you, do also to them, for this is the Law and the Prophets."-Jesus 

"You have heard that it was said, 'You shall love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you"-Jesus

You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye-Jesus

And.....this one, by Stephen King that just tickles me.....

People want to know why I do this, why I write such gross stuff. I like to tell them I have the heart of a small a jar on my desk.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Favorite Book (s).....Day 4 Blog Challenge

This question wasnt too hard, although I love many books. I just went to my shelfari and shazam! favorites are all listed there, so there wasnt any thought required, and these days I am all about not thinking (wait...that doesnt sound right).

I have a pretty eclectic taste in books (just like music, I guess). I dont read Westerns or those Romance novels. I'll give pretty much anything else a chance though. My favorite things to read are memoirs. Ok here is my list:

First of all...The Bible. There is no other book that I depend on and try to live my life by (though I fail constantly) than the Bible. That being are the rest....

I Know This Much is True-Wally Lamb.
This is a very long book. Its huge, but well worth it. It is about the life of twin boys growing up in the 50's and 60's, with a loving mother but a step father who is rather hard to live with. It follows the twins through their lives as they come to grips with one of them being diagnosed with schizophrenia and the healthy twin's struggle to come to grips with it as well as with his own demons, his stepfather, his girlfriend, ex wife, and loss of an infant, as he vows to take care of his brother for the rest of his life.

Undone-Wally Lamb
Another Wally Lamb book that I absolutely adore. Its about a girl who encounters a horrific event in her young life and how it destroys her until she finally ":comes undone" and fights her way back to something that resembles normal. Funny and at times heartbreaking.

The secret Diary of Adrian Mole Aged 13 3/4-Sue Townsend
A must read for those who love British humor and coming of age stories, although this coming of age is quite different. Laugh my butt off every time I read it.

The Catcher in the Rye-JD Salinger
Despite this being the book that supposedly (in his warped mind) encouraged Mark David Chapman to asassinate John Lennon after he asked the Beatle frontman to sign it, I love this book. A coming of age book about a boy who temporarily loses his mind. Wanna know something stupid? I found a hard cover of this book, an early edition, in a second hand shop and some wise guy had written in the inside of the cover: "To Mark, enjoy the book, Love John". Im serious. Jerk. Maybe they were going to try and sell it as THE book that Lennon signed before he was shot. Im sure that one is in an evidence bag in NYC.

The Glass Castle-Jeanette Walls
The memoir of a girl who grew up with mentally ill parents and the life that she and her siblings had to live with them. Running from the law and social services, living in extreme poverty and enduring abuse of all kinds until they were old enough to work and save money to get all three kids, one by one out of their situation. A story of survival for sure. Beautifully written.

 Blackbird-Jennifer Lauck
Another great memoir. A tragic tale of a young girl's life. The stuff that this young girl endures is incredible. Even more incredible that she was able to heal from it. There is a sequel to this book too. I read it because I had to know what happened in the rest of this girl's life.

Prince of Tides-Pat Conroy
I love Pat Conroy's stories. You may have seen the movie of the same title. Dont judge this book by the movie though. The book is full of rich goodness, and I love the way Pat Conroy writes about the south. I can taste the food, hear the bugs, feel the heat, and smell the watere the way he describes it. The book is about a man's quest to find answers to his sister's illness, and remembers many things about growing up in his family along the way.

Bag of Bones-Stephen King
My second favorite horror writer, but one of my favorite all time authors. This book is a haunting love story. At once frightening and a heartbreaking. Ive read many King books, and this one is by far my favorite.

Running with Scissors-Augusten Burroughs
I really enjoy Burroughs' books, and so far this one is my favorite. Again, dont judge a book by its movie. Supposedly a true story, a very weird childhood indeed. Somehow he manages to make it funny at the same time. I love the way he describes his mother in particular and how he felt as a young boy. Its hard to believe there are people in the world like the one's he ended up being sent to live with; its hard to believe they could continue on with what they do for so long before someone stops them.

Raising Demons-Shirley Jackson
Shirley Jackson is my  favorite horror writer. However, this book is not one of her horror books. It is the tale of raising her children and it is hysterical. Its hard to describe the horror stories of Shirley Jackson, but her stories of raising her children are funny and very entertaining. She is one of my heros and was what I had in mind when blogging about my kids.

Life Among the Savages-Shirley Jackson
Another non horror book from my favorite Horror writer. The same deal as Raising Demons, just different funny stories about her life as a mother in Vermont, where she always felt like an outsider.

We Have Always Lived in the Castle-Shirley Jackson
Hey whatta ya know? Its an actual horror story by my favorite horror author. Stephen King references Shirley Jackson and her stories in several of his own works. One of his books was dedicated to the memory of Jackson; it read;  For Shirley Jackson who never had to shout. Dont ask me which one of his books, because I dont remember. I do know exaclty what he means though. Her writing is so subtle, the horror is so quiet and barely subtle its scary. She is best known for "the Lottery" an extremely creepy and disturbing story made into an even creepier and more disturbing short film in the seventies, and "The Haunting". I first read "We Have Always Lived in the Castle" in the ninth grade. My friend had read it and passed it on to me. To this day we both love the book. I cant really do it justice by telling you what its about, because whats so great is the surprise of what exactly has gone on in the big house.  It full of subtle creepiness, mystery,madness, strange people and strange relationships. Good old fashion nightmare fuel, as my friend Ryan would say.