Saturday, April 26, 2008


This is probably one of the few posts you will see about my weight. I'm not a big fan of talking about it in public. This morning, my friend Jennifer dragged me to Weight Watchers. I have been very anti-diet my entire life, but I think that I need help - real help - and it looks like WW might work for me. I'm still feeling very skeptical and probably will, until I meet goal weight and keep it off for an extended period of time!! I sat through the meeting before deciding, but signed up afterwards. I think that with a good dose of reality and a good friend for accountability, it just might stick. If anyone in my area wants to go with us each week and be accountable too, you are more than welcome.


Aloha! I'm just sitting here thinking about my mom & dad and how they are spending this week at an awesome resort in Hawaii. (No jealousy here!) *wink* They lived in Hawaii for 3 years before they had children. My dad was a nuclear engineer on a Navy submarine. He would go out on the boat for up to six months at a time, while his bride (my mom) would await his return. He cannot talk much about those years, because of the highly secretive nature of what they were doing. We still make jokes that he was a rare plant salesman (reference to "Meet the Parents" for those of you who don't get it!). They had a long distance relationship and when they got married on October 18, 1969, they flew to Hawaii a few days later and were gone for 3 years. When they returned, they settled in a small town in Nebraska where both of my brothers and myself were born.

My mom & dad have not returned to Hawaii since they flew back to the mainland in 1971 - 37 years ago! Some friends of their own a timeshare in Hawaii, visit every year and invited my parents to travel with them this time. They were excited to return and see all of the changes the past 37 years have brought. My mom & dad are some of the most thrifty people I know and don't take big vacations. They finally splurged on a vacation for themselves. I hope they are having the time of their lives! Love you, mom & dad - take lots of pictures!!!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

One Year Ago

One of the most difficult days of my life happened one year ago (April 25/26). I received a phone call that my friend Amanda had entered the hospital with pregnancy complications and would be there for awhile. I dropped everything and went to the hospital to visit her in the afternoon. I tried to be upbeat and encouraging and truly had hope that she would spend the remainder of her pregnancy on bedrest. It sounds weird to hope for bedrest, but the alternative was not even a remote possibility in my mind. I left a little before 3 o'clock in the afternoon to pick my kids up from school. Approximately 30 minutes after I left, her water broke and Zachary's entrance into this world was imminent. At 22 weeks gestation, we all knew what this meant. They were told that he would be dead before he was born. Later that night, my friend Amy and I went to the hospital to lend support during this horrible tragedy that was scheduled to be a momentous happy occasion only 18 weeks later. Amy and I were able to love on Amanda & James during labor and left the room for the delivery. The waiting was horrible and sad. Very sad. There are no words to describe the sadness. When we entered the room and met Zachary for the first time, we learned that he was born alive and his short little life lasted only minutes, not hours. We tried to comfort our dear sweet friends as much as possible and helped them remember Zachary's life by taking photos. We were there as they tied the tiny little gown on his body and as James & Amanda wept over him. That was the most heartwrenching, difficult thing I have ever been through. When you love your friends, you grieve with them. As difficult as the experience was for me, I cannot even begin to fathom how difficult it was for them. I had not carried this baby in my tummy. I had not painted rooms and bought baby clothes. I had not prepared a place in my heart and my home for his little life. I had not planned for his future. Amanda and James did. And now, he was gone. I have been in awe of their strength through trials and their honesty about their struggles over the past year. They are my heroes. I'm grateful that I was able to meet Zachary. Even though his life was way too short, his life touched mine in so many ways. I cannot wait to meet you again in heaven someday, Zachary. You are loved & missed.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Movie Review: Reign Over Me

Wow! I had seen previews for the movie Reign Over Me, but didn't really know what it was about. The movie stars Adam Sandler and Don Cheadles, but it is amazingly not a comedy - and not a stupid comedy either! It is a drama... a very touching, heart warming film about a man who loses his family (Adam Sandler) and his long lost friend (Don Cheadles) that reaches out to him. If you want a movie to cry about, this is the one!

The two main characters had gone to dental school together and were roommates. They had not kept in touch, but one day Don saw Adam walking down the street. He had heard that Don's whole family died, so he got in touch with him and befriended him. I won't ruin the movie by spilling all of the details in this review - it is well worth watching yourself! It was so neat to watch the plot unfold and the relationship between the two men develop. I hope that if I'm ever in a desperate, lonely situation that someone reaches out to me like that. It was amazing and very touching. I bawled my eyes out.

I do not like movies that are not realistic to a certain point (hence why I'm not a big fan of science fiction, Star Wars, Lord of the Rings, etc.)... but movies where the characters could be real people in real life situations really get to me.

5 stars!

Sunday, April 20, 2008


I've been thinking a lot about this lately. At one point since I've had babies, I had lost 40 pounds. Unfortunately, I've gained it all back. I am not and have never been what you could refer to as "thin". Due to genetics and a sugar addiction, I've always been average or above average on the scale. I am okay with that & don't even care what the scale says when I am in shape. Lately, I feel way above average for me and the scale certainly does not deny that fact. I understand that I'll never be "thin", but I at least want to be in the normal range for my body type and genetics. I believe that I know what that feels like (it was feeling pretty good 40 pounds ago)... and that's not where I am right now. So, I'm festering about it. Unfortunately, when I fester about something it makes me want to eat more sugar. Bad idea! So... I'm working up some resolve right now. I've spoken to a dear friend about accountability, but no firm decisions have been made yet. I'll let you know how it turns out. Pray for me, if you think about it. This is definitely one of those things in life that cause me to fully rely on God - my strength alone doesn't do the trick!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The Gift of Worship

At our Creative Arts Ministry training a few months ago, they showed us this video at the beginning of a worship session. It moved me to tears. Today, I saw it posted on a friend's blog and thought I would share it with you. Please comment if it moves you too.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Happy Birthday, Truman!

FIVE YEARS OLD! I cannot believe that my baby is five years old. This week, he turns five and we also register him for kindergarten! I lived for so long in the world of diapers, bottles, naps and the double stroller. It is hard to believe that era is over. My boys are growing up fast!

We celebrated Truman's birthday with a trip to Peter Piper Pizza, then home for cake & ice cream and presents! Truman also had a "party" at preschool earlier in the day.

To my bubba:

You are my baby! Your smile has always melted my heart. When I was pregnant with you, I prayed for a calm, sweet baby and my prayers were answered. You have always had a sweet spirit about you (with a feisty streak!). I am most blessed by the funny things you say and the smile that lives on your face. You are such a smart kid and I'm blessed to be your mom.

I love you with all of my heart! Love, Mom

A look back in time...

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Interesting Conversation

I was talking to Harrison & Truman on the way home from their friend's sleepover on Saturday morning.

Me: "What time did you guys get up this morning?"
Harrison: "I don't know."
Me: "Was it really early, like dark outside, or later?"

Truman (very matter-of-fact): "It was in the morning."

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Ah, the sweet sounds of...


I'm sitting here on this lovely Saturday morning listening to the beautiful silence. Tommie & Franklin are camping this weekend, the other two boys are at a friend's house and the two puppies are outside romping around. I'm enjoying this morning's alone time much more than last night - probably because I know it will be over very soon.

It's interesting to me that sometimes we complain about something and when we finally get our way, we don't like it. I often think about how I would really enjoy time to myself in my own home with no one else. I complain to Tommie that he needs to do things socially, so I can be home without him. He's such a homebody. Last night, I had that opportunity to be home alone and what did I do:
7:30 - ate dinner with a friend & walked around an outdoor shopping center chatting
9:30 - visited Blockbuster to return movies & rented "The Bodyguard" - a movie I love, but Tommie doesn't
9:40 - talked on the phone to a friend, considered dropping by to visit
10:00 - returned home to let the puppies out
10:05 - too tired to watch a movie, don't want to waste my "alone" time by sleeping, so I decided to give the puppies a bath
11:15 - finished bathing & grooming and clean up
12:00 - fell asleep watching TV with a sleeping puppy on my chest
12:15 - woke up, let the puppies out, put them in bed and went to bed

I guess I'm a lot more boring than I thought I was!! When I was in college, I would have found a group of friends that wanted to go bowling or to the coffee house, then wandered around or hung out at someone's apartment until 3 or 4 a.m. playing games or cards without even considering bedtime. Okay, maybe I'm not boring - I'm OLD!

I really enjoy time alone at my house during the day or for one evening, but simply knowing that Tommie & Franklin won't be back until Sunday and the other boys wouldn't be home until Saturday morning made my time bittersweet. I am a social creature and though the noise and chaos that frequents my home sometimes drives me nuts, I do not want to live without it!

(p.s. I sure hope Tommie is taking lots of pictures on his campout, because I missed a prime opportunity to get wet puppy pictures!!)

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Adventures of Max & Lucky

My first attempt at using Windows Movie Maker...

More cute puppy pictures!

When things are calm in puppy world, Max & Lucky like to chew on the same toy or cuddle together.
When things are rowdy in puppy world, Max & Lucky enjoy chewing on each other!

Oh Hail!

Last Friday at 3:30 a.m., the entire household woke up to the sounds of a massive thunderstorm, followed by large hail. This was our 2nd instance of hail in a week and the biggest in size and largest amount of hail that I have seen in my entire life! The hail stripped the baby leaves off of the trees and left the yard looking like a war zone. We sustained some roof damage, as well as damage to my new Rondo. Thank goodness for insurance!

The above photos were taken at 3 something in the morning. The photo below was taken at about 7 a.m. In the most shadowed parts of the backyard, the piles of hail did not completely melt until afternoon - even though it was very warm outside.

Thursday, April 3, 2008

100th Post!!!

In honor of my 100th post, I was reflecting on various things... I love lists! It is a simple, but fun act to list out something - anything. People to write notes to. Things to do. Groceries to purchase. Favorite movies of all time. I was thinking about lists and I remembered one of my favorite books ever. I found it in a bookstore when I was in late Jr. High or early High School. It is entitled "14,000 things to be happy about". The entire book is one giant list. No sentences. Just phrases. Or words. Not many books have survived from my childhood, since I've moved so many times! However, that book remains on my bookshelf to this day.

After pondering this post idea, I pulled it from the shelf and was inspired. I was planning to write my own list of 100 things I am happy about (for my 100th post)... I got to about #15 and then I had a thought. I wonder if this book is still in print. I wonder if I'm the only person in the world that thought this list was the coolest book ever.

So, I googled it. Amazingly, not only does the book still exist, but it was reprinted in 2007 and there is an entire website devoted to that book and the other works of the author. The author tends to go a little new-age in a few areas, but overall I feel that this book/list is a wonderful reminder that we need to be grateful for the little things around us. If we focused our time and energy on all of the positive things around us, we would all be much happier people. The greatest part is that God is good, so nearly anything we find that makes us happy comes from Him. In reality, a book about 14,000 things to be happy about is a tribute to a wonderful God. Whether the author intended it as such or not.

I'm sure that I could sit here and come up with a list of 100+ things to be happy about, but instead, I'd like to challenge each of you to come up with 100 of your own. Maybe someday, I'll post my list (or the start of one), but for now... I'll leave you to ponder... - click on "Happy House"

"Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life—in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing. But even if I am being poured out like a drink offering on the sacrifice and service coming from your faith, I am glad and rejoice with all of you. So you too should be glad and rejoice with me." - Phillipians 2:14-18

This is how I want to live my life. Grateful. Cheerful. Rejoicing in the positive. This is my "new year's resolution" on April 3, 2008.