Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Soapbox Rant

This article irked me today. It is out of USAWeekend, a little flier in the Sunday paper basically. I found it while clipping coupons this morning. It's titled "Facebook 101". It is a very short little article talking about how you can connect with your children by using Facebook.

Let me preface this by saying that I much prefer Facebook over MySpace. Several years ago, my husband was using MySpace and wanted me to start a page, so I did. And I was appalled at the amount of inappropriate images and advertising that would appear when I would visit pages. It bothered the husband too, but he wanted a way to communicate with old friends, so he tried to ignore it.

I decided I could do without MySpace. I basically made my own page, and then never went back. Except to check the husband's page every once in a while. Then he started Facebooking instead. Hallelujah. Now he hardly, if ever, checks his MySpace page. I checked out Facebook and wasn't nearly as offended by its content. I haven't been convinced to spend time making my own page yet, maybe I'm a little jaded by MySpace still.

Anywho, I prefer Facebook over MySpace. Now, about the article. After explaining to parents how to sign up for an account, it says this, "...Your child may not rush to friend you, but you still can communicate via the Facebook version of e-mail or ask if she'd be willing to use "privacy settings" to limit your access to parts of her page. For example, perhaps you can see her online photo albums but not the notes friends post on her "wall" (an online bulletin board). Even if your kids won't grant you an all-access pass, you may be pleasantly surprised to find their pals "friending" you, offering new connections to your children's world." (Emphasis mine.)

Seriously, one question came to mind. Who is in control here? You better believe the only way my kids would be getting to use Facebook would be with me having an "all-access pass." You can bet your bottom-dollar on that. There you have it, my soapbox today.

Random Confession and Thought

The girls were bribed to do well at the salon yesterday. They got ice cream. There wasn't enough time for Miss A to eat it before VBS, so she had to wait until today (I put it in the freezer, just in case you were wondering). I almost let her eat it for breakfast. I would have if there had been ice cream for me to eat as well.

Her eating reminded of something from my childhood. We rarely went to Kmart, but when we did we always went straight to the concession area. Because my Mom, she has a thing for popcorn. The Sis and I, we never went for the popcorn, it was all about the ICEE. Do you remember how Kmart used to sell ICEEs and they had the little spraw/stroon thingie? You know, the red straw that had a built-in spoon on it. I thought they were the coolest things ever. It was the best part of the ICEE. Perfect brain-freeze tool if there ever was one. Do they still make those?


I think Miss A could have used one this morning. She was fascinated when I told her about it. It would have made her breakfast, I mean, snack easier to eat.


Monday, July 28, 2008

A Very Short Surprise

My children act as if they have the most sensitive scalps ever. Seriously, they scream and cry and whine like they are in horrifying pain when I comb their hair. Thus, I have been threatening for quite some time that we would be going to get their hair cut, short. Short enough to eliminate the hour-long whine-fest while I attempt to remove the knotage. Our popular poem to say over and over and over again in many different voices in an attempt to entertain enough to prevent the whine-fest goes a little something like this... "Oh my little tots, you've got lots and lots of knots!" We are quite entertaining if we do say so ourselves.

Anywho, today was the day. I had been putting off the event because there aren't any "kid salons" in our new town. You know the ones where they sit in the cool cars and watch a movie of their choice and then get a balloon and a sucker when they leave. Yep, none for miles. The girls have only ever been to a kid salon. They had begun to associate hair cutting with all of the above and I was quite frightened as to what they would do in a salon without cool cars, movies, balloons, and suckers. I decided today to just go to the adult salon (the cheapest one in town because it doesn't really matter to me). I figure if the cut sucks really bad, it's hair, it will grow back. Some of you totally disagree in this philosophy. I have other things I want to spend my money on than expensive haircuts. We can just agree to disagree.

Back to today. I told the girls we were going for a surprise because I like to keep them in suspense. Remember, I am rather elusive. I asked them what they thought the surprise could be. Miss A says, "I was thinking maybe DisneyWorld. But we would have to go to the airport. How far is the airport?" If that were possible, I would have so been there! Now how do I make the salon sound fun in comparison to DisneyWorld?

Miss C thought the surprise was "Applebees?" There again, that would have been a nice surprise. Not quite as difficult to make haircuts sound better than Applebees, though that does sound rather scrumptious as we are now getting close to dinner time and I am on the computer and not in the kitchen. Hmmm, I think my stomach is now growling.
Anyway, I tell them, "we're going to go get haircuts!"

Insert squeals of delight here and a rather fast-paced conversation of two little girls whose mouths can't quite go as fast as their brains. They were excited! Both of them said they wanted their hair "very short." "It will just be sooooo cute." "Hee, heee, heee, this is going to be so much fun." "I can't believe we're going to get our hair cut!"
Miss A first. Her before picture got eaten by the BlackBerry monster, sorry. Here's her in the chair after about 6 or 7 inches getting cut off.
Miss C waiting for her turn. Consider this her pre-picture. Loooooooong curly hair.


Miss C's turn. See the pretty long curls? Beautiful, and about to be trashed. Don't cry, we've got a surprise coming.

I had asked that Miss C's hair not be quite as short as Miss A's because her hair is curly and I didn't want her to look like she had a really short cut with a bad perm. The stylist realized that if we cut her hair an inch shorter than I wanted, she would have enough to donate to Locks of Love. What's a bad perm short hairdo when you can donate to a little girl in need and not have all that beautiful hair be trashed? We went for it. Here's Miss C's response to the idea that another little girl was going to be wearing her hair...



The finished product, so cute.
I got my hair cut when they were done. They were entertaining everyone in the salon by jumping up and down to feel their hair bounce and looking in EVERY mirror in the place. Miss A is convinced that her teachers at VBS tonight won't recognize her and that is apparently just waaaay tooooo exciting for a 5-year-old to handle. She's beside herself, and really looking at the pictures below, that cliche is kind of true. They look even more alike with their very short hairdoos.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I'm Just Sayin'

I've killed 9 flies today. Inside the house. Without a flyswatter. Just call me Mr. Miyagi. Maybe my children are being raised in a barn.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Stepping Up-Week 2

Good morning ladies!

We are going to have some fun with our discussion today. I know that many of you read last week's, but you didn't leave a comment. I think you will want to comment this week, so here is a little lesson on how to leave a comment. (I'm not insulting your tech skills, just giving a little guidance to those who need it and don't want to ask!) Remember how your school teacher always said, "The only stupid question is the one not asked!" Okay, maybe that was just my teacher.

Anyway, when you are finished reading this post, at the very bottom there is a pink line that says "Posted by Hope" then "o comments". Click on the "0 comments". There will be a new page pop up that says "Leave your comment" and has a box there. Type whatever you want to say in the box. If you don't have a google account, then just select Name/URL and type your name in the "Name" box. If you don't want us to know who you are just select "anonymous". Then, click "Publish your comment." It will say, your comment is awaiting moderation or something like that. That just means that it is waiting for me to do something on my end. Your comment will show up as soon as I can get to my computer!

Now, onto the real discussion. Beth's video lesson was a lot about Hidden Hypocrisy. My husband and I learned a lot about this topic when we were going through our first pregnancy and the resulting death of our daughter. We tried extra hard to be the "ever faithful couple", the "great example", the "strong ones", because we felt like that was what was required of us as Christians. As a result, we were worn out, exhausted, and no one knew how to help us through it all.

When we finally started being "transparent" with people and telling them how we felt and how much we were hurting, people were able to help. More than that, God was able to use us to share His story!

Our testimonies are so much more effective when we are transparent with people. Now, I'm not saying we bear our souls to everyone we encounter. We still want to glorify God in all that we do. But, it is absolutely okay to share our hurts and let people know how much we need God and other Christian friends during those times. God has given us each other to share life's journey not just walk along parallel to each other and never cross paths. Let's cross paths. Let's step out in faith and share with one another and see how God uses it.

I loved Beth's statement, "He [God] knows when something glorious in the future necessitates something difficult in the present. Because He knows the glory will be worth it, God will risk being misunderstood. Yes, God wants us to have joyful, satisfying lives, but He also wants us to have crowns to cast. Rewards to receive. Character to develop. Compassion to give. TESTIMONIES to tell. In the midst of those painful processes, God makes bold promises."

A few pages earlier Beth also said, "The scenarios that we pay to see at the movies will ultimately pale in comparison to what Christian pilgrims have endured on our journeys to Mount Zion...From heaven's vantage point, your story is exceedingly more exciting than you can conceive--replete with dangers, near misses, and great escapes."

So, consider the people who have been transparent in your life, the testimonies you have heard, the stories you have read in the Bible. If you could see one of those testimonies made into a motion picture, which one would it be? And, just for fun, what is your all-time favorite movie and why? Tell us about it in the comments!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Sheltered

I often find myself joking about how our kids live "a sheltered life". Not meaning that we try to shelter them, but that they don't really get many cultural opportunities. You know, to broaden their horizons. We do leave the house, but we don't get to experience new things all that often. We would love to have them not be sheltered in this sense of the word. We would love to give them all kinds of opportunities. I believe we grow and become better people by having new experiences and learning how to adapt to them. We're working on it, baby steps, people, baby steps. Anyway, I think this definition by dictionary.com gives a little idea of what a sheltered life really means...

shel·tered [shel-terd]
–adjective
protected from the troubles, annoyances, sordidness, etc., encountered in competitive situations: a sheltered life.

I'm probably going to ruin a future post by my sister, but hers will be much better anyway because it will involve many, many, many pictures. And really, pictures are just plain fun. At the risk of totally ruining her story, here goes...

I had talked to my sister this morning about the fact that they went out on a boat on a lake some time this past weekend and her 4-year-old boy got to go tubing. It was a very funny and entertaining story. I'll let her tell that part. :)

I figured the girls would enjoy the story and have fun knowing what Cousin C did this weekend. So, I told them all about the tubing, the boat, and the lake.

They thought it sounded rather delightful! "We should go to the lake and ride on a boat and go tubing! That would be JUST SOOOOOO MUCH FUN!"

Then I told them the part about hitting a wave, flying through the air, landing in the water, floating to the top because of his life vest, waiting for the boat to come back and get him. It was a very dramatic retelling of the story. I'm sure there were no embellishments.

Suddenly the girls were very concerned about Cousin C's safety. "Were there sharks in the water?" "Well, then were there crocodiles?" (Um, maybe we should consider restudying that in science this year?)

"What is in the water then?" they asked. To which I replied, "Fish and snakes." (Read here and here and about the girls' love for snakes.) After pondering the idea of snakes in the water, Miss C says, "Well, we don't want to be bit by snakes. We SHOULD JUST STAY IN THE BOAT!"

Now, there is a very good spiritual analogy here about never getting out of the boat for fear of the snakes in the water. The girls are sheltered in the physical realm by a mother who hates snakes and "lake swimming" more than anyone I know, and so, the likelihood of them being exposed is slim. However, in the spiritual realm, they are sheltered by a God who promises to protect them from the "snake." Now that is the kind of sheltering that I want them to experience forever!

Keep an eye out for the snake, girls, but don't ever stay in the boat because of him. Your God will protect you. DIVE IN and hang onto Him for the ride of your life! And when you hit a wave and get thrown into the water, don't worry, He'll help you up, because He is your Life Preserver! Thank you Lord for your protection!

"My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one." John 17:15

Friday, July 18, 2008

Persistence and Preservation

Miss A (the 5-year-old) has been obsessed today with a little question. She has spent two hours following me around the house and asking it. I decided she was being persistent enough that I might ought to answer her or it could go on all day. Here's the question...

"Mommy, how do you know that Miss O is a girl?"

See why I was ignoring it now? I wasn't in the mood to have this conversation with a 5-year-old this morning. Really, I'm surprised she hasn't asked it sooner with all the boy cousins she has and all. My response...

"The same way I know that you are a girl!"

That's right, I am very clever, and vague, and elusive.

"By my hair? By my clothes? By my voice? I don't know, how do you know I'm a girl?"

Now at this point, I'm thinking, all of those things could be true. If I didn't know she was a girl and I saw her for the first time, based on all the above, I would assume she was a girl. Maybe that was all she wanted to know. Maybe that will do for now. Just answer yes.

(Please don't judge my parenting based on the rest of this post. I know it is my responsibility to have this conversation and someday I will. I'm just trying to see how much she is really asking so I don't give her too much information that she isn't asking for!)

I'll just see if she can figure it out for herself. You know, I'm not really the spoon-feeder-type of teacher.

"Think about when you take a bath. What part do you have that means you're a girl?"

What a ridiculous response you might think. How is she going to figure that out? Well, I'm from the school of thought that a 5-year-old or less does not need to be actually saying the correct anatomical terms. Because I know a little girl who actually used the V-word at a very young age and there was always something not-quite-right about it to me. Call me old-fashioned. I like innocence. Anyway, in our family, they are called "girly parts." I thought she would figure out very quickly the part she washes that means she is a girl would be her "girly parts." I overestimated her brain power on this particular day.

"My legs? My arms? My belly?"

Um, hello? Anyone home? I thought that, didn't say it. After guessing every body part, she finally got around to it. Then, we had to explain that boys don't have girly parts, they have boy parts to which she spent much time trying to figure out how to add an -y to the end to sound like boy-y parts like girl-y parts. It wasn't working quite like she wanted it to. She's clearly fascinated with words.

As she was pondering how to make the word sound the way she wanted it to, I was feverishly praying over what to say next. How much is too much? Is she really old enough for this information?

She says, "So, me and Miss C, and Miss O, and You, have girly parts and Daddy has boy-y parts?"

"Yep."

Here's the part where I wait for questions about what they look like, how are they different, or Lord have mercy, why?, etc. She replies with this...

"Okay. (pause) Mommy, does God rest at night?"

Now that is a questions I can answer. Thank you Lord! Clearly, our ever-so-anatomically-correct discussion has satisfied her current questions. I'm thinking, God, thank you for preserving her innocence just a little longer, and thank you that you do not rest at night! I might need you at night sometime when her questions get a little more grown-up than I am ready for them to be!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Stepping Up-Week 1

Welcome Stepping Up Ladies!

For those of you who aren't Stepping Up Ladies, you should be! I'm teasing you, sort of. I'm sure you are very confused as to what I am even talking about. Let me explain. A group of 27 ladies from our church are meeting together on Monday nights to study God's Word using Beth Moore's Stepping Up study. We started a few weeks ago, but we are only on week 2 in our study. So, if you want to join in, go here and get a book, catch up, and join in the discussion. Or, you can join in without doing the study too. Basically, you're all welcome and I'm so glad you came to this here blog.

I really enjoyed hearing from you all on Monday night about places you would like to go. We all have different places that are special to us and different things we like to do and different people we want to take with us. It is so fun to see how God has made us all uniquely different and uniquely special!

You all did such a great job joining in the discussion on Monday also, and as your fearless (okay, maybe not fearless) leader, you make it so much easier to "lead". So, thanks for your input and I pray you will continue to join in the discussion and share your lives with one another through this study. I am a firm believer in walking alongside each other in this journey and helping each other along, NOT going it alone! God has given us all different experiences that He can use to help others, if we are only willing to let Him!

Okay, off my soapbox. Onto the real discussion. I mentioned Monday night that I would like to make our "large" group feel "small". We're going to do that in many ways, and one of them will be through this blog. I want to use the blog to spark more discussion than what we have time to share on Mondays. Each week, I am going to put up a post specifically dedicated to Stepping Up. So, check back here on Tuesday or Wednesday every week and join the discussion to get to know your group members a little better.

Here we go. I will just tell you now, I am a horrible singer. I love singing, but I am not good at it. I tried out for the school choir in 3rd grade. We had to go sing with the music teacher while she played piano. It was just her and I. No one else in the room. She asked me to sing America the Beautiful. After, oh, maybe 2 words. She stopped playing piano and said, "Let's try Mary Had a Little Lamb." Needless to say, I didn't make it into the choir that year.

My spirit was bruised. I believed that it was better to just keep my mouth shut than to let anyone hear me sing. I went through church for many years just "mouthing the words." I could probably win a lip-synching contest I got so good at it. My worship suffered because of it. I was so concerned about whether or not other people could hear me singing that I didn't allow myself to worship.

Now, believe me, I know that worship is not just singing! I worship God in many ways, throughout my day, every day, but I love to worship with song. So, I saved it for the shower or the car! I have often thought that if I could choose one talent, it would be singing. And I have often wondered if Jesus was a good singer. It made me think of this again when Beth talked about Jesus singing in the video Monday. On the one hand, I imagine Him to have the most beautiful singing voice ever and hope that it is so. On the other hand, if Jesus doesn't have a good singing voice, then I feel a certain bond with Him. He and I could be kindred spirits and "sing" to God together and not even worry if our singing is bothering each other!

I am still "reserved" in church settings. I sing (not lip-synch), but ever so quietly. What's more important to me than my voice, is what I am singing to God. In the video Monday night, Beth said this, "We can think a song is beautiful and memorize its words yet remain completely unaffected by what it says. Consider the relevance of Paul's words in 1 Corinthians 14:15 in our present context: "I will sing with my spirit, but I will also sing with my mind."

There have been times in my life when I was unable to sing the words to certain songs. I didn't feel like I believed them enough to say them out loud. It was very difficult to be able to come to a place where I could sing about God's faithfulness and goodness and actually mean what I was saying! I felt like God knew my heart and to sing these songs would have been lying to Him. So, I didn't sing. Now, I can say that I sing them with my whole heart. I believe these words with my whole being and I can shout them with confidence. Though, I sing them quietly! :)

So, here's the discussion today.
Have you ever had trouble singing the words to a song?
Do you right now?
What song is it and why is it so hard to sing?

If there is not a song that has been hard to sing, what is your favorite worship song right now?

Post your answer in the comments below so that we can share together. I may even have a little surprise based on these comments at the end of our study. Intrigued? Leave your answers in the comments. I'll get you started with mine. Read the first comment to see.

Monday, July 14, 2008

Pretend Trauma Drama

Miss A and Miss C have set up a hospital in the house today. Apparently they have two patient rooms and they have both been very full today. A few hours in, here's an update on the patients.

Room 1: The mom has a broken ankle and will have to stay in the hospital for 10 weeks, but don't worry she's watching TV and has a bell to ring if she needs help with anything.

Room 2: Apparently this "just borned" baby needs to go get "blood testes". It's a girl by the way. Poor soul. I think she needs to get a second opinion.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

The Days of Diligence

I was thinking about all the things needing to get done around here today and thought, I ought to do a post on that. So, I got the computer out and brought up the blog. Then, I got sidetracked by the Proverbs scripture that needed updated. I decided to update it first. Lo and Behold, look at the very next scripture that was awaiting me to put on the ole blog. Go ahead look over to the right. [Updated: Here's the verse. Time to change it again on the sidebar, so I'm just adding it here in the post. "The sluggard craves and gets nothing, but the desires of the diligent are fully satisfied."Proverbs 13:4 (NIV)]

Uh-huh. Does He know how to speak to me or what? A little conviction goes a long way. So, in the spirit of conviction, here goes. My post has taken a whole new turn.

Several years ago I did a Bible Study with a group of women using a book called Creative Counterpart by Linda Dillow. It became one of my favorite women books of all time. The book is all about becoming the woman, wife, and mother you have longed to be. It is a great book on balancing our priorities in line with God's Word.

Since I'm a planner, I wanted a practical way to plan out my priorities and have a checks-and-balances way of keeping on task. In the book, Linda mentions a planner/calendar that she created that would have been a phenomenal way of doing this, but it was out of print at the time. So, I took it upon myself to make my own. I searched long and hard for a good planner. See planners are kind of like purses to me. I love the idea of a small one that is easy to carry with me, but then I realize that I have way too much stuff to fit in it, so I have to get one that is bigger than I want it to be in order for it to function the way I want it to function.

I still haven't found the perfect one. I've thought about making it, but that would probably put my priorities all out of whack. :) Thus, I've settled on the Amy Knapp's Family Organizer. I like the Christian edition, but I can never find it at the store. I know I could order it online, but then I have to wait for it to get here and I'm usually needing it ASAP by the time I think to order it.

Anywho, I got this planner, and then I typed out the priority portion from Linda's organizer. (Go to this post to read about the priorities.) I purchase this planner every year and then print out the priorities and glue them over the grocery side of the planner (because my grocery list is always way bigger than that!).

Some (namely my husband) would say this is so behind the times and lame when I could just put everything in my BlackBerry, but that's a whole other post!

Anyhow, every Sunday I sit down and fill out my planner for the week including priorities, to-do list, and menu. Then, everything I need to know is right on the kitchen counter and ready for me to stay on task for the week. I can look at it and check things off as often as I want.

Problem is, I was looking at the last several months (like since we moved), and there are more things unchecked meaning undone, uncompleted, not finished, etc. than there are ones that are checked. So, I've come to the conclusion that I'm much better at planning than I am at doing! I already knew that, I just see now that it is well-documented and proven in the pages of my planner!

So, I'm thinking a little bloggy accountability might be a good thing. I only have 4 weeks before I start officially homeschooling the girls and many a project that need to be completed before then. If you look over to the right you'll see a new list titled "Diligent Days of Summer". This is a list of all the projects that I would like to complete before starting school. This may be very ambitious, but I know that I will be able to keep my priorities in better alignment once school starts if the projects are done. So, I'm gonna get busy and I'll update you as I complete them!

Priorities

These are the priorities I put in my planner courtesy of Linda Dillow. I so wish her planner was still in print.

I print out the list and the scripture and leave room in between each to fill it in every week. I pick pretty simple and cheap things. The point is just to make sure that I am focusing on them in order. If I get nothing else done, it is Bible Study. Then, something for husband. Then, making the kids feel special. Then, taking care of the home. You get the idea. I can get so consumed with the home and children sometimes that I neglect the husband and myself. See, it is not written-in-stone. It doesn't have to be done this way. It is just to help me consciously try to keep an eye on my priorities and have a plan to keep them in check each week. I've listed some examples from this week so you can see what kinds of things I try to do to keep my priorities in check.

This is going to sound helplessly unromantic, but the one I have the hardest time doing is the husband one! A man can only enjoy little love notes, emails, and candy bars so many times before he needs something new. I can't seem to think of anything else for the guy that doesn't fall in the category of surprising him with a new expensive technological gadget every week. I think I'm just gonna have to ask him for some ideas. See, unromantic, if that were me, as a woman, I would expect him to get me exactly what I want without me having to tell him. :)

1. LORD
"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness; and all these things shall be added to you." Matt. 6:33

-Stepping Up Study
-Prayer Calendar
-Daily Worship Time/Personal Bible Study

2. HUSBAND
"An excellent wife is the crown of her husband." Prov. 12:4

-? (I used to do lunch letters in his lunch, but now he comes home for lunch.)

3. CHILDREN
"Behold, children are a gift of the LORD." Psalm 127:3

-Go get sno-cones at park
-Library

4. HOME
"She looks well to the ways of her household, and does not eat the bread of idleness." Prov. 31:27

-Armoire painted
-OAMC plan

5. YOURSELF
"You shall love your neighbor as yourself." Matt. 19:19

-Daily exercise
-Daily quiet time
-haircut?

6. OUTSIDE THE HOME
"Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations." Matt. 28:19

-Stepping Up
-Send email to the "name" family.

Friday, July 11, 2008

A Fashionable Friday

So, BigMama had this post the other day about her wardrobe wars with her daughter. I laughed hysterically because I can so relate.


Here's the outfit that won out today with Miss C. It was at least modest, which is a whole other issue. We went to church this way. Well, we dropped the hat so as to avoid the Kid Rock-meets-Avril look. It was everything I could do not to walk around singing a little Avril just so everyone would know that I DID NOT PUT THAT ENSEMBLE TOGETHER!




Thursday, July 10, 2008

A Dragonfly of Epic Proportions

I so wish I had video of this. Bear with me as I try to show you with words. There is still humor to be found without video. You might want to grab some popcorn and Junior Mints. Dim the lights. Play the trailer. And now for the feature presentation...

We pulled into the garage late last night (remember I'm having difficulty with schedule right now), and there was something buzzing around the garage. Loudly. With great fervor. It was swarming the light at the top of the garage and looking rather large and ferocious.

As it stopped long enough for me to get a good look, I notice that it was a dragonfly. Of course, I say it out loud. With all three girls in the van still. They do have ears. They are very scared of wasps right now (which has everything to do with their mother freaking out about some wasps that were in the kitchen a few weeks ago, I am a brave one).

Miss A. says, "What is a dragonfly? Do they bite?"

I say, "Um, I'm not really sure." (I know, my mind is brilliant in clutch situations.)

Miss A. says, "How are we going to get inside? I don't want to go inside."

I watch the aforementioned subject fly around until he lands on the light again. Then, with stealth-like reflexes we scurry all three girls into the house. "Go, Go, Go, NOW! Hurry! Close the door!"

Oh, it was amusing! I thought for sure it would be gone if not dead in the morning based alone on the pure scorching temperature of the garage. I was totally expecting a fried dragonfly for breakfast. Totally forgot about it overnight.

Fast forward to after breakfast. I'm washing dishes. I'm hearing an odd thumping on the door from the kitchen to the garage. I'm thinking, "what is in the garage? Is my phone nearby in case I need to dial 911? Should I finish the dishes and act like I don't know someone is in there or run like the freaking wind to the other room, gather the children, and pray in the corner until help arrives?" No, I do not get anxious about anything. I have a very level-head when it comes to hearing noises.

I put the dishtowel down, get ready to run, and realize that the thumping has become more of a buzz. A buzz that I have heard before. Last night actually. The blasted dragonfly. How did that thing survive overnight? Disaster averted. I finish the dishes.

Fast forward again. This time it is lunchtime. (Our day revolves around eat time. I can tell you what time of day something happened by what meal it was closest to.) We need to buy diapers and then take Daddy some lunch. So we are all ready to go. Through the garage.

Yep, you know where this is going. My hand is on the door handle. BZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ. Miss A yells, "What was that? There's something out there!" No kidding? Ya think?

With no explanation, because I like to keep my children on their toes, I start to turn the handle. Miss A yells, "Mom, don't you even think about opening that door!"

I almost peed my pants in laughter. I might have if her face wasn't pale as a ghost at how scared she was! It didn't help her feel any better when I explained that it was just the gargantuan dragonfly from last night.

"I want to stay home. We don't need to get diapers. We have Pullups. Daddy can come home for lunch," says Miss A. Oh she gets her braveness from her mother.

I would have agreed if Miss O hadn't been pulling off the Pullups and running around naked lately. Clearly diapers were important today. How did we escape being held ransom in our house by a dragonfly you ask?

We went out the front door. The girls hid around the corner of the house until the dragonfly flew off. In their direction. Over their heads. Squeals of terror. Seriously, you would have thought a pterodactyl was heading straight for them.

Lunch was late today. Really late.

Note To Self

You probably blog way too much when your 5-year-old says something cute and then looks at you and says, "Are you going to put that on your blog?"

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Learning from the Boys

Just a few things the girls learned last week from their week with the boys.

1. The words "toot", "spit", and "boogies" are fair game in Simon Says.

2. Do not follow the leader in Simon Says, if the leader is a boy.

3. Boys do not have to go inside to go pee pee.

4. Utensils are optional.

5. Snakes are cool.

6. Killing snakes is cooler.

7. Even boys have to wear helmets.

8. Captain Hook's hand is no longer there and not because it is stuffed inside his sleeve.

9. Boys MUST take baths EVERY DAY.

10. It is much louder and much funner to have boys around. :)

11. When asked a question, "I dunno" is the perfect answer, no matter the question.

12. I can't stand that this list has an uneven number of items! Got any to add?

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

A Schedule, It Does Elude Me

I am in some serious travel funk! I feel like Humpty Dumpty. I can't put myself back together again! We are a very structured family around here, normally, that is. We got back on Friday people, we still have no schedule. My children ate dinner at 9:30 last night. Seriously, my mother-in-law would be proud! (I love you, I'm just teasing you!) Miss A is 5-years-old and she has never eaten dinner that late! It was all for a very good reason, but still.

I don't function well without schedule, which is why this post is completely a bunch of rambling from my fried brain. I think my flux capacitor is malfunctioning. If I could just get back to the future, then I know that I would be on schedule again!

I've shared way too much information in this short post. Give me the evening to recover. I'll be back tomorrow, (see back to the future)with a good flux capacitor and my ramblings will make sense again, that is if they ever really made sense to begin with.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Home With Books

So, that little 10 hour van trip? Turns out, it takes 12 hours to drive to Dallas. And don't get me started about parking garages and 15-passenger vans. Let's just say they don't go together. Especially at 1 in the morning after 12 hours of driving.

We had great conversation and got to know each other well. Seriously, we (three women) talked for 12 hours straight, and it was quite fun. You can learn a lot in 12 hours, and it was all good to learn. I couldn't have picked two better women to spend 24 hours in a van with for the trip. That's what we call ministry folks.

The conference was, well, um, let's see, how should I say this, uh, interesting. Clear as mud huh? We were busy from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m., then ate dinner at midnight, got to bed by 2, and got up to do it all over again for an entire week. I'm exhausted. The job was actually really fun and it was great to see the team (13 of us) work together and have a blast doing it. They laughed so much and had such a great time. It is fun to see people enjoying ministry and encouraging each other. The actual conference itself, well, I'll maybe mention more later. Not sure.

The girls were very well taken care of and had a blast at Aunt Heather's house. Thanks so much Heather and Uncle Johnnie :) One week was way too long for me to be away, but you made the girls have so much fun that they hardly even noticed we were gone. Thanks again, and you really can send the boys our way some time! (Though, they'll spend much more time in the church nursery than the waterpark-in-a-box!)

Okay, I just wanted to tell you we made it back safe. The bloggy break was actually kind of nice, even though I was bummed to not have WiFi and be able to blog.

Just in case you have been dying to find out. Here's the books my sister sent to me.

1. Split Ends by Kristin Billerbeck
2. A Delirious Summer by Ray Blackston
3. SandPebbles by Patricia Hickman
4. Come Back, Amelia Bedelia by Peggy Parish
5. Walt Disney's Peter Pan

Something tells me that those last two weren't packed for me to read? Though I do love me some Amelia Bedelia! So, anybody read these? What'd ya think?

Alrighty, off to bed. Gotta try to make up some sleep (that never really works does it?) It's bound to be a bloggy week this week!