Sunday, December 06, 2009


There's a pink stroller in my living room.

It has a pink car seat to match.

It has flowers on it.

It's very girly.

I have a few baby clothes put away in a closet upstairs.

There's a bouncy seat and a Leapfrog toy in Quinn's office.

We're still circling around a couple of baby names.

I am enormous and nauseated and have heartburn.

And yet...

It feels strange that there is another baby coming. Maybe it's because pregnancy overwhelms me so much. Quinn talks to the baby and I feel her kick and move and wonder how our lives will change because of her. It still seems so far away that she will be here (and there's more vomit and heartburn coming before she does), that I just put the thought aside.

Really, can it change that much? Our lives, I mean. We already have three children and adding another mouth to feed doesn't really change the dynamic of our lives too much, except that she's a girl.

Yet, somehow I think it will.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


Having a bit of a melancholy day today.

Thinking about how fast the boys are growing and am sad about it, but at the same time have very little patience with them. Sigh...

Tired of the boys getting sick every other week. Or every week. I've not been sick. Quinn has not been sick. Which I'm thankful for.

I think there's something important leaking from the van. So saith the man. I really don't think anything about the van unless the air conditioner is not working as fast as I want it to or I'm broken down by the side of the road.

Feeling chubby. Blah, blah, I know I'm pregnant, but I have a bit of complex. The weight gain is driving me nuts. It's not helpful that I can no longer keep up the four mile trek I was doing. The Braxton Hicks get quite annoying after a bit.

I miss my friends in Birmingham and friends here. I feel like a hermit lately. And I'm terrified to go anywhere significant because I'm afraid I'll throw up (last trimester nausea has come).

I had to drop Christmas choir (which I adore) because it ran too late and I would fall asleep or simply not show up because I had conked out on the couch at 7pm.

I miss my mom and my sister. They'll both come sometime when the baby is born, but I miss them anyway.

I need to clean my house and must muster up the energy to do this, but it's so daunting.

The children are bickering. Sigh...

I don't like days like today. I feel like I've been on the verge of tears all day.

Sorry for the downer folks. It'll get better. I know.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

by Edgar Allan Poe

From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
From the same source I have not taken
My sorrow; I could not awaken
My heart to joy at the same tone;
And all I loved, I loved alone.
Then- in my childhood, in the dawn
Of a most stormy life- was drawn
From every depth of good and ill
The mystery which binds me still:
From the torrent, or the fountain,
From the red cliff of the mountain,
From the sun that round me rolled
In its autumn tint of gold,
From the lightning in the sky
As it passed me flying by,
From the thunder and the storm,
And the cloud that took the form
(When the rest of Heaven was blue)
Of a demon in my view.

Well, that explains a bit, doesn't it?

I see a busy day before me, but it's all fun times for our family today (bring on the candy) and tomorrow starts November! The countdown is ON for this baby to come. My last trimester starts in one week! October went by super fast, as will November and December because of the holidays to come. Here are some pictures of our Halloweeny activities. We also did Mummy Dogs (think pigs in a blanket with a leetle bit of the hot dog showing throwing to look like a mummy- mustard drops for eyes work well), but without the pictures.

Have a safe and fun Halloween!

Friday, October 23, 2009

I think I'll dress like a witch after all...

Saw this article on my friend, Amy's, blog and thought it was interesting...

Here's the original link, but I thought I'd just repost the article here so you don't have to go through the trouble of clicking on the word "here".

Concerning Halloween
by James B. Jordan
August, 1996

OPEN BOOK, Views & Reviews, No. 28
Copyright (c) 1996 Biblical Horizons
August, 1996

It has become routine in October for some Christian schools to send out letters warning parents about the evils of Halloween, and it has become equally routine for me to be asked questions about this matter.

"Halloween" is simply a contraction for All Hallows’ Eve. The word "hallow" means "saint," in that "hallow" is just an alternative form of the word "holy" ("hallowed be Thy name"). All Saints’ Day is November 1. It is the celebration of the victory of the saints in union with Christ. The observance of various celebrations of All Saints arose in the late 300s, and these were united and fixed on November 1 in the late 700s. The origin of All Saints Day and of All Saints Eve in Mediterranean Christianity had nothing to do with Celtic Druidism or the Church’s fight against Druidism (assuming there ever even was any such thing as Druidism, which is actually a myth concocted in the 19th century by neo-pagans.)

In the First Covenant, the war between God’s people and God’s enemies was fought on the human level against Egyptians, Assyrians, etc. With the coming of the New Covenant, however, we are told that our primary battle is against principalities and powers, against fallen angels who bind the hearts and minds of men in ignorance and fear. We are assured that through faith, prayer, and obedience, the saints will be victorious in our battle against these demonic forces. The Spirit assures us: "The God of peace will crush Satan under your feet shortly" (Romans 16:20).

The Festival of All Saints reminds us that though Jesus has finished His work, we have not finished ours. He has struck the decisive blow, but we have the privilege of working in the mopping up operation. Thus, century by century the Christian faith has rolled back the demonic realm of ignorance, fear, and superstition. Though things look bad in the Western world today, this work continues to make progress in Asia and Africa and Latin America.

The Biblical day begins in the preceding evening, and thus in the Church calendar, the eve of a day is the actual beginning of the festive day. Christmas Eve is most familiar to us, but there is also the Vigil of Holy Saturday that precedes Easter Morn. Similarly, All Saints’ Eve precedes All Saints’ Day.

The concept, as dramatized in Christian custom, is quite simple: On October 31, the demonic realm tries one last time to achieve victory, but is banished by the joy of the Kingdom.

What is the means by which the demonic realm is vanquished? In a word: mockery. Satan’s great sin (and our great sin) is pride. Thus, to drive Satan from us we ridicule him. This is why the custom arose of portraying Satan in a ridiculous red suit with horns and a tail. Nobody thinks the devil really looks like this; the Bible teaches that he is the fallen Arch-Cherub. Rather, the idea is to ridicule him because he has lost the battle with Jesus and he no longer has power over us.

(The tradition of mocking Satan and defeating him through joy and laughter plays a large role in Ray Bradbury’s classic novel, Something Wicked This Way Comes, which is a Halloween novel.)

The gargoyles that were placed on the churches of old had the same meaning. They symbolized the Church ridiculing the enemy. They stick out their tongues and make faces at those who would assault the Church. Gargoyles are not demonic; they are believers ridiculing the defeated demonic army.

Thus, the defeat of evil and of demonic powers is associated with Halloween. For this reason, Martin Luther posted his 95 challenges to the wicked practices of the Church to the bulletin board on the door of the Wittenberg chapel on Halloween. He picked his day with care, and ever since Halloween has also been Reformation Day.

Similarly, on All Hallows’ Eve (Hallow-Even – Hallow-E’en – Halloween), the custom arose of mocking the demonic realm by dressing children in costumes. Because the power of Satan has been broken once and for all, our children can mock him by dressing up like ghosts, goblins, and witches. The fact that we can dress our children this way shows our supreme confidence in the utter defeat of Satan by Jesus Christ – we have NO FEAR!

I don’t have the resources to check the historical origins of all Halloween customs, and doubtless they have varied from time to time and from Christian land to Christian land. "Trick or treat" doubtless originated simply enough: something fun for kids to do. Like anything else, this custom can be perverted, and there have been times when "tricking" involved really mean actions by teenagers and was banned from some localities.

We can hardly object, however, to children collecting candy from friends and neighbors. This might not mean much to us today, because we are so prosperous that we have candy whenever we want, but in earlier generations people were not so well o_, and obtaining some candy or other treats was something special. There is no reason to pour cold water on an innocent custom like this.

Similarly, the jack-o’-lantern’s origins are unknown. Hollowing out a gourd or some other vegetable, carving a face, and putting a lamp inside of it is something that no doubt has occurred quite independently to tens of thousands of ordinary people in hundreds of cultures worldwide over the centuries. Since people lit their homes with candles, decorating the candles and the candle-holders was a routine part of life designed to make the home pretty or interesting. Potatoes, turnips, beets, and any number of other items were used.

Wynn Parks writes of an incident he observed: "An English friend had managed to remove the skin of a tangerine in two intact halves. After carving eyes and nose in one hemisphere and a mouth in the other, he poured cooking oil over the pith sticking up in the lower half and lit the readymade wick. With its upper half on, the tangerine skin formed a miniature jack-o’-lantern. But my friend seemed puzzled that I should call it by that name. `What would I call it? Why a "tangerine head," I suppose.’" (Parks, "The Head of the Dead," The World & I, November 1994, p. 270.)

In the New World, people soon learned that pumpkins were admirably suited for this purpose. The jack-o’-lantern is nothing but a decoration; and the leftover pumpkin can be scraped again, roasted, and turned into pies and muffins.

In some cultures, what we call a jack-o’-lantern represented the face of a dead person, whose soul continued to have a presence in the fruit or vegetable used. But this has no particular relevance to Halloween customs. Did your mother tell you, while she carved the pumpkin, that this represented the head of a dead person and with his soul trapped inside? Of course not. Symbols and decorations, like words, mean different things in different cultures, in different languages, and in different periods of history. The only relevant question is what does it mean now, and nowadays it is only a decoration.

And even if some earlier generations did associate the jack-o’-lantern with a soul in a head, so what? They did not take it seriously. It was just part of the joking mockery of heathendom by Christian people.

This is a good place to note that many articles in books, magazines, and encyclopedias are written by secular humanists or even the pop-pagans of the so-called "New Age" movement. (An example is the article by Wynn Parks cited above.) These people actively suppress the Christian associations of historic customs, and try to magnify the pagan associations. They do this to try and make paganism acceptable and to downplay Christianity. Thus, Halloween, Christmas, Easter, etc., are said to have pagan origins. Not true.

Oddly, some fundamentalists have been influenced by these slanted views of history. These fundamentalists do not accept the humanist and pagan rewriting of Western history, American history, and science, but sometimes they do accept the humanist and pagan rewriting of the origins of Halloween and Christmas, the Christmas tree, etc. We can hope that in time these brethren will reexamine these matters as well. We ought not to let the pagans do our thinking for us.

Nowadays, children often dress up as superheroes, and the original Christian meaning of Halloween has been absorbed into popular culture. Also, with the present fad of "designer paganism" in the so-called New Age movement, some Christians are uneasy with dressing their children as spooks. So be it. But we should not forget that originally Halloween was a Christian custom, and there is no solid reason why Christians cannot enjoy it as such even today.

"He who sits in the heavens laughs; Yahweh ridicules them" says Psalm 2. Let us join in His holy laughter, and mock the enemies of Christ on October 31.

Check out the site. I've never heard of celebrating Halloween from this perspective before. I've always considered Halloween harmless for the kids to dress up and get candy and decorate some pumpkin cookies and carve a jack-0-lantern, and all that jazz. I have very pleasant memories from my childhood Halloweens (especially since my sister's birthday was the week before the said event and there were some spectacular goings on with that). I scoff just as much at the term "Fall Festival" as I do "Winter Break" in lieu of "Christmas Vacation". I've ignored the naysayers because I simply don't care. I like Halloween, stamp-stamp, and I'm gonna get some Snickers from the neighbors. We'll do our Jack-0-Lantern (scary is the vote this year) and set him on the porch with a light in his belly. Quinn put his foot down about the Halloween Tree, but I love the idea, Abbey! Maybe eventually...

If I've stepped on your toes, I certainly do intend to (wink, nudge), but I also am hoping to remind you of our central focus forever: the gospel of Jesus Christ and that it is central to our lives; our very existence. Letting my nine-year old dress like a skeleton instead of a superhero will not devalue the gospel.

Like in a lot of things, moderation is delicious...

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Excerpt from the Raven

Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December
And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor
Eagerly I wished the morrow; - vainly I had sought to borrow
From my books surcease of sorrow - sorrow for the lost Lenore -
For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore -
Nameless here for evermore

PS... picture is by Gustave Dore
PSS... Quinn won't let me name the baby Lenore. Or Poe. Or Raven. Sigh...

Friday, October 02, 2009

October's Here

"From ghoulies and ghosties and long-legged beasties, and things that go bump in the night, good Lord deliver us." (Old Cornish prayer.)

I love the month October. Smile.

Of course, the playlist is up. And, of course, there will be caramel apples. And possibly other new things. And childhood Halloween stories. And the traditional last minute costumes for my kids. And Poe. I love Poe. And spooky quotes (like the one above, which raises the hair on the back of my neck, in a good way) will periodically appear.

Fun times...

more to come...

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Legacy of Swarthy Eyebrows

Yeah, so I changed my layout. I did it here on Shabby Blogs (Thanks Virge) and I love it (if you're on FB and want to see my fabulous new blog background, click on the original post thingy at the bottom). It was the least complicated background change I've ever done. Most erase everything you've done (like in the sidebars), but this one was super easy.

I've been thinking about having a daughter this week. And also about ants, which have raided our house this week. But mostly, I've been thinking about having a daughter. I have visions of a dark-haired little girl, with an easy smile and a winning spirit that attracts many friends. And she may be sweet, but she could possibly be bossy (I'm a bit bossy), she could be neurotic (ahem- let's not even go there), she could could be manipulative (not me!), she could be overwrought and emotional and snotty (visions of myself when I was fourteen) and she could have dark, swarthy eyebrows. You may be thinking, "What? You don't have dark, swarthy eyebrows!". Oh, yes I do. I carry tweezers and a mirror with me at all times (just in case I have an eyebrow emergency). I still have visions of being called Kim Dukakis in 1988. Do you remember him? Allow me to remind you.

Michael Dukakis has swarthy eyebrows. Just saying...
Anyway, why does this matter? It doesn't. Except that I'm vain and neurotic and self-righteous and want her to beautiful and winning and sweet (See? That reflects how good of a mother I am). I've never thought about any of those things when I've been pregnant with the boys. My only thought when I've been pregnant with the boys is, "Wow, I wish I would stop throwing up." But now we've introduced a new element in this life and that is how I (ME) could affect my daughter. Will she watch me obsess about food when I feel out of control? Will she see that I'm more conscious of my appearance that I should be? Hmmm... How irrational my expectations are! I am a sinner raising children! My human-ness affects everything I do. Really, the only thing I know that I do right is saying to my children, "Hey guys, Mom's not good enough on my own effort to get to heaven, thank goodness for the sacrifice of Jesus and the grace of a loving God. I'm gonna screw up big-time (and do all the time), but Jesus is perfect."
And we've already raised (practically speaking and with the help of her mother) one little girl and I'm watching her be an adult with exceptional interest. She's beautiful and kind and we're awfully proud of her. She's our girl.

Maybe she could help us out a bit with baby girl #2... What do you say, Rach?

Friday, September 11, 2009

Ups and Downs

I should be unloading the dishwasher. And throwing in another load of laundry. And possibly sweeping the floors. Definitely packing my suitcase. And yet... here I sit. Well, I did clean the lint from the dryer so I'm good, right?

I've been a range of human emotions this week. On Tuesday, Quinn and I went to have a sonogram done of the baby. I've been dreading this appointment, more so than previous pregnancies, not because I've experienced problems, but because there reasonably could be problems. And I'm getting more neurotic as I get older. This actually has been my easiest pregnancy and THAT, my friends, is saying something. Anyhoo, the sonogram technician was fabulous and the appointment went off without a hitch. And I found out I'm having a GIRL! I was surprised and elated. How fun! Oh, the bows and shoes and dresses... You know I'm going to love it. Possibly the best part has been telling everyone I know. It's been good and my smile has just nearly hurt my face. On Tuesday night, I came home from Back to School night at Silas' school and our good friends, the Speeces, were here and had brought a lovely pink, smocked dress for our baby girl and strawberry icecream (pink) with pink tablecloth on the table, pink napkins, and a It's a Girl! balloon hovering over the table. What a lovely surprise!

And then on Wednesday my Pappy died. He was diagnosed in August with pancreatic cancer and then he died Wednesday. It was very fast. I knew it was coming. We all did. And then it happened. And now I'm flying out tomorrow morning, without my husband and children, to go to the funeral with my parents and sister and two of my nieces. And today I've been a basketcase. I burst into tears during carpool duty (which, by the way, if you burst into tears in carpool duty, then you are done with carpool duty for the day), and really just wanted to come home and sit next to my husband on the couch and not think about anything. Which is kind of what I've done, except that I can't stop thinking about the trip and the baby girl and my sweet little family and death and Pappy's amazing imitation of Donald Duck. He always smelled of pipe tobacco when I was a little girl, which I loved.


Somehow, Christ is glorified in this melting pot of emotions. My only consistent hope in this world of constantly changing happiness and sadness is Christ. And the tears will fall (from both happiness and sadness), but He is still my hope.

Monday, August 03, 2009

Air Quotes and Being "Healthy"

I read a chapter this morning in my "free" pregnancy book from the doctor's office. I put "free" in air quotes because (1) I like air quotes and (2) because it's not free, perhaps I should say the book is "included" in the large deductable I will be paying to my insurance company. Alas, it's better than no insurance at all, so I will be satisfied with my "free" (can't help it) book.

Anyhoo, the chapter caught my eye because it was called "staying healthy while pregnant". "Healthy" (in my warped little brain) means "skinny", so I gave it a read. It's interesting, with this being my fourth baby, that I get MORE obsessed with not gaining too much weight while I'm pregnant instead of becoming more "oh well, I gain weight when I'm pregnant". I get very irritated when I read articles about staying "healthy" (see above air quotes on my definition of healthy) when I'm pregnant, because I don't gain 25 to 30 pounds when I'm pregnant; it's more like 40 to 45. This, in part, is due to the fact that I am hungry every two hours (not unlike a newborn baby) and must have something substantial to eat (three strawberries are not going to cut it). And when I say "hungry", I ain't (using bad grammar for emphasis) just whistling Dixie. "Hungry" means "I must eat now or I will puke". I know this from plenty of experience. Sigh... So I make my delicious, neurotic cheese toast snack (one slice of bread with two pieces of turkey, two slices of provolone cheese and a healthy sprinkling of Lowry's garlic salt with parsley placed under the broiler for approximately four minutes) at least twice a day and kick myself for not eating an apple, even though I know an apple ain't (see above parenthesis for using bad grammar) gonna cut it.

I am neurotically (I mean "healthily") exercising and trying to drink a lot of water, but my weight is steadily creeping up because I absolutely cannot stay at the recommended "2100 calories a day is all a pregnant woman needs". So I scream at the book "EXCEPT FOR WOMEN WHO THROW UP WHEN THEY'RE HUNGRY!". Of course, the book (which does not have ears) cannot hear me, but my husband can, who thinks I'm crazy when I'm pregnant anyway. Which is only a little bit true.

And so I press on...

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

News Flash


I haven't blogged in a while. I guess you know that.

Let me sum up:

1. We had a great year in our public school system. This came as a complete shock to me because I wasn't planning on having a great year. The boys did very well in their classes and Quinn and I were both pleased with the outcome. Will we homeschool in the future? Not sure. Maybe. I think it will depend on circumstances and the individual ways the boys personalities pan out.

2. Working this year was an educational stretch for me. I learned how to become more efficient at home (of course, this came after the initial two weeks of crying everyday after school) and I liked having the same hours as the boys. Someday, I think I shall become certified (that was meant to sound lofty- didn't you see the 'shall'?).

3. This is our last school year in Mississippi. Quinn will finish up his on-campus classes this year and then we will move back to Alabama. I am excited, but will be sad to leave new friends we've made. And we've made some dandies.

4. And last, but, wow, not least, I'm pregnant with baby #4. Yes, somewhat (HOLY COW, IS THAT POSITIVE????) shocking information for us, but I'm growing more excited about the new life growing in me. I am eleven weeks today and still in the throws of panic-eating (I hate vomiting and my body likes to be sick when I'm pregnant) and trying anything to help keep the nausea at bay. I always struggle with my body image when I'm pregnant. I eat all the time (panic-eating) and, duh, typically gain a good bit of weight when I'm pregnant. I'm still running (uphill battle) and trying to stay active (even though I DO like remaining sedentary), but I'm still feeling chubby. Of course, it doesn't help that I get a positive pregnancy test and the next day I cannot button my pants. Anyhoo, I'm due on February 2 and am already excited about the hospital stay (there's cable at the hospital). We find out in September the sex of the baby. Felix insists that it's a 'sister'. We'll see.

Maybe I won't wait another three months to blog.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Painting 101

I've learned to paint since we've moved to Mississippi (which has been one year ago tomorrow) and not just "the middle" either (which was my only painting job I was given), but real "I'm gonna paint this living room if it KILLS me" painting.

Well, today I've tackled the upstairs bathroom. And I'm learning some interesting things about painting. I'm documenting them so that I'll remember not to repeat the mistakes AGAIN.

1. Wear old scarf in hair. I have paint at the end of my ponytail from where I've turned my head in a small, confined place.

2. Wear shoes. Because it is the bathroom, we had to move the toilet to paint the wall behind it. I don't know if you've ever moved the toilet in your house before, but when you move a toilet it smells very bad (plus it's my boys' bathroom- if you catch my drift) and there's "liquid" that seeps from the inside of the toilet onto the floor. I was wearing shoes, but I spilled paint onto them (number three coming up) and took them off to rinse them and then promptly stepped in "liquid seepage" and closed my eyes in disgust. Niiiice.

3. Do not place tray of paint precariously on the edge of the tub. This may seem obvious, but apparently it did not occur to me at the time. And then it fell over. Butter side down, of course.

4. Do not use the edge of tub as a step ladder. This may also seem obvious, especially because I'm a wee bit accident prone, but I'm content standing on my tippy-toes to reach the wall above the tub. I did come downstairs to get my phone though, in the hopes that, if I did fall, I would be conscious enough to call 911. Isn't that a good idea?

There. Documented. Now I'm going up for coat number two. And some bleach to clean up the seepage.

Friday, May 08, 2009

While I'm Avoiding Pilates...

Yes. It's true. I got up at 4:45am to do pilates and have sat my booty at the computer instead. I am sipping coffee (with Creme Brulee creamer... mmmm), and mulling the fact that I am, in fact, avoiding the Windsor Pilates lady and she's sobbing in her DVD box.

We are in the process of repainting (hello and thank you to Heather and Crissy who SURPRISED me with their presence for my birthday and helped me paint the living room! We had great fun!), fixing, and (perhaps) laying the Pergo flooring before my family comes up to visit in two weeks. While you may raise your eyebrows in apparent disbelief over my monumental chore list that I put off to the last minute, I scoff at your disbelief in loftiness and snobbery. I work better under pressure. Ish. Of course, I am not laying the floors (ha), but I have learned to paint (also ish) and have just a wee bit of guilt of asking my husband if we can do this and that while he's preparing for finals. More scoffing by you? Well, I ask of you, which is more important: The house being done to perfection before my family gets here in two weeks or Quinn finishing well in his classes? er... Don't answer that.

I've also been mulling over smells. Now, if you know me at all, you know my fascination with different smells. This smells bad (ew, smell it! Um, ok!), this smells good (sniff... ah!), what can this smell be (hmmmm...). I've been reading Rebeccah's stuff on living a simpler life (check it out), which also equals living a cheaper life ("cheaper" almost outweighing my weird "smelling" thing), so I have been enamered with making my own shampoo, deodorant, yogurt, and toothpaste. I have not actually done these things yet. I think about it and think it would be good. And really, the only thing that is stopping me is smells. I like the smell of brown sugar shampoo and Dove soap. I love standing in the deodorant aisle at the store, agonizing over which deodorant I should pick. And don't get me started with shampoo and hair products. I prefer to go to the store by myself when I'm picking out these things so that I can stand there as long as I wish to pick out the most perfect smelling item. So, I have my dilemma. Cheap versus smelling really good. I shall mull still.

I have two weeks left of school.

I'm going to start food journaling again. (I need more obsessions)

The clock is chiming 6:00am and I must get started with my smells....

Monday, April 20, 2009


I'm sorry. I usually don't post stuff like this, but I thought it was, um, interesting. Maybe a little gross. Well, since my husband ran screaming from the room when I said, "Hey, check this out", I'm guessing it's not at all a point of "interest" for men. And a lot gross.

I, however, am intrigued. Check it out.
By the way, it's for a woman's monthly, just so you know. Perverts.

Friday, April 03, 2009

Creature of Habit (Well, I want to be, anyhow)

I mentioned in yesterday's post that I made lists that included me peeling wallpaper. Well, I find myself making lists everyday now. Different lists: grocery lists, organization lists, to-do lists, idea lists, weekend lists, etc. I find myself looking forward to writing them. More so than actually accomplishing the tasks on the list.
Currently I'm writing this list:

Weekend List:

buy birthday present for a birthday party tomorrow (creative ideas?)
take out spring/summer wardrobe for everybody
deep clean upstairs and downstairs
and, of course, the everpresent: PEEL WALLPAPER in upstairs bathroom

I'd like to transfer my desire of MAKING lists to actually ACCOMPLISHING them (especially that BATHROOM!). At least I feel like I'm getting SOMETHING done if I write down what I want to do. Maybe if I set a timer that would help.

Thursday, April 02, 2009

Spring Fever Makes Me Cranky.

Feeling overly critical.

Burnt out from school. Don't think I could have a jobby-job where I didn't have a summer break. I'm longing for it.

Really want to paint rooms in my house. That, of course, must come AFTER I peel wallpaper. Hmmm. I keep writing "peel wallpaper" on lists, almost as an afterthought. It's not working. I ignore it just as well if it's written down.

Haven't taken the Spring Clothes out. Need to. Silas has finally outgrown size 5 shorts; he turns 7 in two weeks (hello, WOW). Poor baby, he looks like a ragamuffin. I usually love taking out my spring clothes, it's like a surprise from last year.

I just finished the Twilight series. I have a hard time reading what I term "Hype" books, because I usually don't get the hype or I think it's over-hyped. Twilight is a BIT over-hyped (admit it!). It's not the greatest writing and Bella is an annoying character. I didn't like her until the fourth book, when she finally developed into a strong character. However, the story was a bit addictive and I read it in every moment of my spare time. The movie was... okay. I'm hearing all of my Twilight "Fanatic" Friends howling (forgive my pun) at my critique, but I did read it. So, um, there.

What shall I read now? Help me. Even if you hate my critique.

Time for lunch.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Brian Regan on Flying

Love. So funny. Nearly peed my pants watching him with the girls the other night.

"It comes with a turnip and a spork."

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Tim Hawkins Scary Bedtime Prayer

I've been obsessed with this guy today. Laughing, laughing, laughing... still laughing...
This one is BY FAR my favorite. His scary face is solid.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Soup de Jour

Quinn and I have fallen into the glorious habit of cooking together. I enjoy this immensely; we spend time together, chopping vegetables and stirring our concoctions with anticipation. Concoctions, you say? Yes. We've learned, over the past couple of years with a slim purse, how to cook cheaply and there's nothing cheaper to make than soup. Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Soup, Black Bean Soup, Pinto Bean Soup, Chicken and Rice Soup, Taco Soup, Tortilla Soup, name it and we come up with something. Not having all of the ingredients for the soup never bothers me, what does an Internet recipe know anyway? So we make do, come up with delicious alternatives, and then I promptly never think to write it down. If you have broth, veggies, a leetle bit of meat (though not always required), and a cupboard full of spices, then you can make a delicious concoction yourself. Shaun, Virginia's husband, once said that he hated to bake because it required too exact of measurements, when, with cooking you really can do just what you like to make it taste as you like. I've come to believe him, though I've not always thought that it was so. Why would you change a perfectly good recipe?
Well, it started when I never had the EXACT amount of ingredients for this recipe or that recipe, or if I was missing an ingredient entirely. I used to dismiss the recipe altogether, but then I thought, "why not try it without that". This led to, "but I don't like that, what if I did this instead?" Now, I've nearly become too arrogant (say it ain't so) with my liberations with recipes. Or, perhaps I should say that we (hubby and myself) have become too liberal because we usually make the soups together. Though, I prefer to call it scientific (doesn't that sound better?). We test things and glory in our success. And soups are usually very successful because you can always add more broth or spices or veggies or whathaveyou to ensure the success.
You may be saying to yourself, "But I could never do that! What if I get it wrong? I don't know even how to start!" Well, my dear reader, why am I blogging about it? Surely not to gloat in your face! I, in my soup knowledge arrogance, will help you get started.

First: A lot of our soups are chicken based. Cooking a whole chicken is cheap (a heckuva lot cheaper than just cooking chicken breasts) and then you have your own chicken stock. You can accomplish this by boiling a chicken until the juices run clear, but I loathe the smell of boiling chicken and prefer to roast mine. Just throw the chicken in a roasting pan, fill the pan halfway with water and season the top of the chicken with whatever spices make you happy. We usually use garlic salt (because it is always here). Bake at 350 degrees for approximately two hours, or until juices run clear. Save the liquid (hello, chicken stock) in a covered container until you are ready to use. I can usually get about 6 cups of cooked meat off a whole chicken and I store them in Ziploc bags until I'm ready to use them. For those in a time pinch, get a rotisserie chicken from the store. Of course, you don't have to use chicken. You could use beef or bacon or ham. Or be vegetarian. You are the boss!

Secondly: Flavor. So you've made your chicken, and you've learned how to cut the meat off the bone and save the broth for your soup experimenting. Now, let's think of the beginning of the soup. Flavor is the key, which is monumental in most recipes (who wants a flavorless meal?). We always (always, always, always) start any soup recipe (and many other recipes as well) with a whole chopped onion and minced garlic (yes, Shaun, it's fresh). If I have celery, then I chop some of that, too. Saute onion and garlic (and celery) with Extra Virgin Olive Oil until it is tender. Doing this at the beginning enhances the flavor of your soup and nearly ensures your success with experimenting. These ingredients are always at our house; they are like milk and bread.

Thirdly: The stuff in it. After sauteing your onion and such, pour in your chicken stock. I always pour in a box (32 oz) of chicken broth, too (unless, of course, your base is beef-then use beef broth... Vegetarian broth is also handy if that's your preference) to increase the amount of soup. You can use water and chicken bouillon as well. Then comes the stuff in it. You can use as much or as little chicken as you like (I used about a cup of chicken in our soup today, and just cut it very small to stretch it) and then dumped whatever my little head desired in the pot. I had a hankering (shutup, I live in MS) for artichoke hearts (yum) and decided to base my recipe around that. I cut up a can of the hearts with the chicken and dumped them in the pot. Then comes the real dumping. Let's see, I put in raw broccoli and spinach today, two cans of Northern Beans, and the chicken and artichoke hearts. The beauty of soup experimentation is that you get to decide what you want! The consistency was to my preference (it can be thin or thick) and so then I went to spices. Spices are VERY important. You could really use salt and pepper if that's what you have, but why not mix it up a bit? My standard favorite spices to add to any soup are cumin, red pepper, ground mustard, and italian seasoning. I'll start off with a teaspoon of each, then judge how I like the taste. Sometimes I'll add curry, chili powder, or cajun seasoning to spice things up a bit. And then I'll add salt to taste. I've also replaced a taco seasoning packet for my favorite spices or add a Ranch packet to make things a bit creamier.

Lastly: the rolling boil. After all ingredients are in the pot, we turn the heat on high and let it boil for about 10 minutes, stirring the whole time to ensure the soup not burning. Then we let is simmer for however long we need it to. The longer it simmers, the better the flavor is. Serve it up with whatever you like.

Ideas: Since the beginning process is very similiar everytime we cook (the sauteing and such), only the stuff in it changes. Here are some ideas to change things up:

Taco Soup: 1 can each kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans, corn, Rotel tomatoes and diced tomatoes. Add taco packet (and Ranch, if you want) as seasoning.

Bean Soup: Add four cans pinto beans, 1 can spaghetti sauce (we use Hunts), and can diced tomatoes. Season as you like. This was one of my favorite soups ever. We used a lot of Italian Seasoning

Vegetable Dump: This is fun! Take whatever leftovers you have (yes seriously) and dump it in the pot. Add cans of whatever to stretch the soup. Season as desired.

Spicy Black-Eyed Pea Soup: This one I've used for a long time and used to have a recipe for it, but it's long gone. I just go by memory now. 4 cans black-eyed peas, 2 cans tomatoes (I use one Rotel and one diced plain). Use 1 to 1 1/2 tsps of cumin, curry, ground mustard, and chili powder. We usually (though not always) saute 1/2 pound of bacon in the pot and then and then saute onions and garlic in the bacon fat. Mmmmmm.... This is in lieu of sauteing with olive oil, though you may choose to do that instead. This is a spicy one, but my kids gobble it up! They like it with the chopped bacon (that you cooked at the beginning), shredded cheese and a spoonful of sour cream. This is the soup pictured at the top of this post.

Fillers: Adding 1 cup of uncooked rice or 1 to 2 cups of dry pasta before you boil the soup will stretch your meal. Or, as Crissy Sharp says, "Put a can of corn in it." I like to say that with an extra thick southern accent. Because it's fun.

Experimentation is fun! Give it a go.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Ash Wednesday

Today is Ash Wednesday. Last year, we were at Community Presbyterian (home church in AL), had a pancake supper with our congregation on Tuesday night, which was followed by information about Lent. My husband helped plan this meeting and I was planning Lent Sunday School lessons and the preparation of our hearts for Easter in Sunday School (teaching 4k and 5K). We've done this the past few years, and last year was the first year our church observed it together. I loved it. My jogging group would talk about the gospel during our runs and our general need for Christ, sometimes with tears and broken hearts. There's something about giving up something you enjoy (that may be very hard to do), to make you see your own lack of self-worth. It's very introspective. It's meant to be.

This year, I didn't even really think about it until yesterday, when I arrived at work and everyone was wearing Mardi Gras beads (apparently, Mardi Gras is a big deal in Jackson, MS), and the children made masks and such in their classes. Double blink. How could I forget? I enjoyed it so much last year. Did I enjoy it because I was participating with my husband and a group of good friends? Did I enjoy it because I participated in giving up something that I loved? Was my own self-righteousness the reason why I loved Lent last year? Pause... Our church does not "do" Lent here (as a whole- maybe some families do it independently) and Quinn has been swamped with schoolwork and has not thought about it. Guilt.

I loathe seeing my own self-righteousness.

And yet, seeing it breaks me and points me to the cross. My heart is filled with selfish ambition and my own self-importance. Lent is never about me. It's about Christ and me seeing my need for Him.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Love It

fail owned pwned pictures
see more pwn and owned pictures

LOL. Can you see this happening? I can and it makes me laugh harder.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Reflections of a Human

We went to Birmingham this weekend for our church's 25th anniversary. It was lovely. I'm sad the weekend went by so fast.

There are a hundred things whirling about in my wee brain, but I shall not wax eloquent (ha) on them this morning (class starts in 20 minutes). Instead, I will give you, in question form, a tidbit (if you will) of my thoughts.

Seminary time is a strange time. We're living completely different lives than we used to. How will this reflect on our future? Will this play out in our ministry?

Am I really going to be a pastor's wife someday? The thought of that makes me tear up and want to throw my head in my hands and sob. I don't feel like I'm cut out for the job. And yet, it appears that it will happen. Husband will be a peach of pastors. And I shall be his liability.

Crow's feet is making me angry. My vanity is an absolute idol. How can I be a leader and yet have so many things that I worship other than God? Be honest. I cast it off as "obsessive compulsive" (eating, laundry, exercise, appearance, performance), but is it really that I'm building my own dissolving, crumbling, imperfect kingdom? There is such a fine line between being healthy and being obsessed. I never walk that line. I think about it and jump right into obsessiveness.

Where will we live when we go back to Birmingham?

Will I have another baby? Or two?

Am I really thinking about going back to school this summer? Because I sure am procrastinating on getting things started.

Rachel, Rachel, Rachel... What will she do? Who will she marry? Where will she live? She is our girl, though I never birthed her. I watch her with interest and fear.

My heart is full and there are tears behind my eyes. Life is unsure, though I'm pretty sure of my calling. Why did He choose me for this purpose? I am unworthy of the calling.

Saturday, February 07, 2009

Valentime's Day

Have you ever noticed that a lot of children will say ValentiMe's Day instead of ValentiNe's Day? If you haven't noticed, then I'm telling you, THEY DO. It must be easier to pronounce the M instead of the N. Well, this fact has not escaped my music teacher at school (she's a smart cookie), who integrated spelling the word Valentine out loud with the children and having the children practice pronouncing in together for her lesson this week. It would go a little bit like this:

"Boys and girls, why are we singing songs about 'being my Valentine'?"

All together, with big smiles and sparkling eyes, "Because it's close to Valentime's Day!"

"Yes. Boys and Girls, let's look at this chart together. Spell Valentine with me." She uses and pointer and points to each letter as the children spell it with her. "V-A-L-E-N-T-I-N-E." Big smiles. "Yes. Very good. Tell me, boys and girls, is there an M in that word?"

"Noooooo." Big smiles.

"You're right. There is no M in the word Valentine. We don't say, 'Val-en-tiiimme'. There is no M. Watch my lips, boys and girls: Vaaalll-ennn-tiiinne. Don't put your lips together at the end of the word. Vaaalll-ennn-tiiinne. Can you try that?"


"No, boys and girls, not 'mmmm', 'nnnn'. Don't put your lips together. Try to say 'nnnn'."


"Very good. Now let's try to say Vaaalll-ennn-tiiinne."


"Very good!" She points to a picture of a Valentine Mailbox on the poster. "Boys and girls can you tell me what this is?" Hands shoot up. She calls on a child.

"It's a Valentime Mail Box!!!"


Tuesday, February 03, 2009

The DOOM of the Squirrel

This past weekend, Quinn decided to clean out the fireplace. We've not lit a fire in it this winter because it was advised that we wait to get it cleaned first. We called a couple of chimney sweepers (cue Dick van Dike image from Mary Poppins) and, WOW!, they are not cheap (cue Dick van Dike image with angry eyebrows holding out his hand for money)). So, Quinn decided that he would give it a go. He's handy and he's cheap (in a good way) and I have full confidence in his abilities. It's a very messy job (I sat, invisible, on the couch, reading a book), but I think he actually liked getting dirty. While he was sitting on the hearth, cleaning out the inside of the fireplace, he opened the grate (???) to let things that might've gotten trapped up there fall to the bottom. And then, THUMP, a THING lands in the bottom of the fireplace. A dead thing. That used to be alive. Sad story. The previous weekend, we had heard much loud (very loud) scratching from the top of the fireplace, and since we didn't really know how to get the critter out, we just hoped that he would figure it out himself (he got in, didn't he?). Yeah, he didn't make it.

Poor little guy. The children were nearly in tears, but Daddy quickly took care of the deceased squirrel and finished cleaning the fireplace. After I took a picture, of course. Morbid.
But see? Now we have a working fireplace. And I am happy. Because the living room is the coldest room in the whole house.

Thee End.

Monday, February 02, 2009

All Aboard the Sarcasm Train (choo!choo!)

Here we are, in the middle of winter and my seasonal depression crap has kicked in full force. I'm weepy and depressed and really could just do with some warmer temps and some flip flops without my little piggies turning into ice cubes. I realize that I'm in Mississippi and you folks up in those colder states are pointing and laughing at me. And perhaps even (gasp!)scoffing at me. Show me some sympathy! I grew up in Florida and this time of year, my little Floridian heart longs for the warm sun (yeah, don't ask me about being a Floridian in August- I'll deny it- the sun will melt the hair off your head). My best defense against the winter blues (besides driving my husband crazy with incessant tears) is sarcasm.

We celebrated Groundhog Day today at school and will celebrate it the whole week by singing joyous Groundhog Day songs and reading ancient Groundhog Day stories at school. What? Did you NOT celebrate Punxsatawney Phil emerging his tiny, rodent head out of the ground? Well THAT is a travesty.

Of course, this holiday (snort) shall be IMMEDIATELY followed by Valentine's Day, oh the day that made Hallmark stores what they are today. I will make 60 Valentine's Day cards this weekend (possibly 70!) and make four dozen cupcakes next week for school parties. And sing Valentine's songs aplenty.

And, OF COURSE, that will be immediately followed by President's Day. Do you have your President's Day cards filled out and ready to mail? I'm a little behind on that right now. You know, I may not actually get those out this year. Wipe your tears.

Contrary to my previous statements, I actually am enjoying these events. It will make February go by quickly and March brings (ta-dah!) Spring!! And Spring Break! And Daffodils! And Cherry Blossoms! And open-toed sandals! Well, maybe not open-toed sandals in March (a mistake I make every year), but there will be a lot more open-window days. Sigh.

Off to get a blanket for my frozen piggies...

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

An excerpt from The Bells by Edgar Allen Poe

Hear the loud alarum bells -
Brazen bells!
What a tale of terror, now, their turbulency tells!
In the startled ear of night
How they scream out their affright!
Too much horrified to speak,
They can only shriek, shriek,
Out of tune,
In a clamorous appealing to the mercy of the fire,
In a mad expostulation with the deaf and frantic fire,
Leaping higher, higher, higher,
With a desperate desire,
And a resolute endeavor
Now - now to sit, or never,
By the side of the pale - faced moon.
Oh, the bells, bells, bells!
What a tale their terror tells
Of Despair!
How they clang, and clash and roar!
What a horror they outpour
On the bosom of the palpitating air!
Yet the ear, it fully knows,
By the twanging,
And the clanging,
How the danger ebbs and flows;
Yet the ear distinctly tells,
In the jangling,
And the wrangling,
How the danger sinks and swells,
By the sinking or the swelling in the anger of the bells -
Of the bells -
Of the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells -
In the clamor and the clanging of the bells!

Read the whole poem here.
There are four parts to this poem by Poe. This is my favorite excerpt; the other two are about jolly jingle bells (woah), happy wedding bells (but you know death will be a part of it somewhere), and death bells tolling (ding, ding!). My heart started to race as I read this section; I just sensed the apprehension of waiting to find out just what WAS the emergency in which the bells were sounding? I love it when he writes:
...Of the bells- Of the bells, bells, bells, bells, bells, bells, bells-

I can hear his agitation and panic. And madness, let's not forget madness. Love it.
Just in case you didn't know... Edgar Allen Poe's birthday was January 19, 1809 (this, of course, bears a strange coincidence to it being my brother-in-law's birthday-he can do a great, ominous laugh, btw). This is the 200th anniversary of the year of his birth. There are celebrations the whole year through! You know what that means, don't you? That we will celebrate here, on my blog. Oh yeah, I'll wait for you to stop leaping for joy.

Happy Birthday, Poe. Dude, I love your stuff.

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Love these things. I recently did this for Facebook and thought I would post it here. Consider yourself tagged.

1. I'm way more girly than I used to be. I Love jewelry, make-up, high heels (with cool hose or tights), interesting color combos, and jackets (year round).
2. I loathe winter though I love winter clothes (scarves and a vintage leather Agner trench I adore).
3. I've just started (in the past year or so) reading the "classics". I refused to read them in high school because I didn't want someone to tell me what to read. I used Cliff's Notes. Cheater, cheater pumpkin eater.
4. Come to think of it, I cheated a lot in high school. My mother is so proud. Stop cringing, Mother.
5. The older I get, the more OCD I get. About everything. Don't get me started on laundry.
6. Alright, you got me started. All the laundry must be clean, all the time. It doesn't have to be folded and put away, but it does have to smell good. I must smell every piece of laundry as I fold it. Sniff, mmmm. Sniff, mmmm. Sniff, mmmm. Some of you know this and are rolling your eyes right now.
7. I have very vivid dreams and nightmares. Sometimes, I wake up and don't know where I am. And I scare the crap out of my husband with screams or sobbing.
8. I love chocolate (if you've known me for ANY length of time, then you know this), but I cannot eat it anymore because I think it is linked to me having dizzy spells (what? I can say "dizzy spells" like an old lady) and headaches.
9. I. Want. To. Have. More. Babies.
10. I enjoy cooking. A lot more than I did than when I got married. I was a tad bit intimidated of my in-laws and their ability to cook amazing southern food. I think we had been married for three years when I ventured to be brave enough to try a recipe on my own.
11. I'm incredibly lazy, which is why Facebook is so appealing. It's pretending to do something, while you're really just being very, VERY lazy. "Hmmm, I think I'll look at Flair and give it to somebody. They will love it. I'm so productive." Flair is fun.
12. I love pretending to be the bad guy. I love to do an evil laugh (bwahahaha) and tap my fingers evil-ly. Especially with my children, who like to run from the room, screaming. Need a baby sitter?
13. I wish I could play the guitar. I can't get past the whole "wow, my fingers are really bleeding" thing.
14. I christmas-treed the SAT's in high school. Yeah, I didn't do very well on it. Wait, I only did that on the math part. There, that makes it better.
15. I don't like taking prescription medication. I think it's because I have a bit (BIT) of an addictive personality.
16. I never smoked weed. I did smoke two clove cigarettes in college (Yes, Bible college) and got as sick as a dog. I'm talking green and laying on the bathroom floor kind of sick. Never cared much for the smell of cloves after that.
17. Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. I just love to dress up and pretend. I never really grew out of that.
18. I'm a wee bit morbid. It kind of goes with that "I like to pretend I'm the bad guy" thing. And I adore Edgar Allen Poe. By the way, did you know that January is his birthday month? It's true. I'm gonna have to do something about that.
19. I know a lot of information about Ted Bundy. A lot. Yes, the serial killer.
20. I want to lose ten pounds. Never satisfied with my weight. Pretty frustrating, actually.
21. I'm going to bleach my sheets today. I LOOOOOOVE the smell of bleached sheets. Sniff, mmmm.
22. I've learned to love running. But you may be bored hearing about that by now. "yeah, yeah, we know. You love to run. Shutup."
23. I wish I were more disciplined with stuff. And not so lazy.
24. I want to make the goal to be three inches taller. Yes.
25. I'm only motivated to clean my house when there are people coming over. And there are. In about five hours. Toodles.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Five Things I Thought Were True About Running

1. Fancy, shmancy running clothes make you faster. While this is not true, they do make you look cooler and that counts for something. For me anyway. Because I'm a vain peacock.

2. It looks painful. Or beautiful. Depending on who you watch run. I probably look like I'm in pain, especially if I'm singing a lil' ditty.

3. It is a good way to get in shape. This is true, but not in the way I'm thinking. I'm thinking I should look like Kate
by now (duh, from Lost), but I don't. I'm thinking she probably exercises a LOT more than I do and generally eats less. And she definitely has cooler hair. No, I'm NOT jealous. Okay, maybe a little. (Hello, THIS WEEK is the season premiere!)

4. It's boring. It's not boring. I actually, ahem, like it. And like it more every week that I do it. It's alone time, chatting time (with Melanie- we run together twice a week), laughing time (alone and with Melanie- yeah, sometimes I look crazy), and a time for me to think and process and recover and contemplate and be goal-oriented and be thankful and be mad and be happy and be curious and think about my humanity.

5. You'll grow to hate it. Not so. I've grown to love it and look forward to it. To feel sweaty, feel my feet beat the pavement, feel my arms swing, to go slow, to go fast- I feel very human and very alive.

Here's a great way to start.

Sunday, January 18, 2009


Daddy and Felix have a conversation.

Daddy: "Hey, Sweet Cheex Beex!" He says this in his "I'm talking to the kids voice", which is so cute.

Felix: "I not a sweet cheex, Daddy. I a big boy."

Daddy: "Well, you're a silly goose!"

Felix: "I not a silly goose, Daddy. You don't hear me cock-a-doodle-do, do ya?"

I guess not.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Wearing Pink

I'm sporting pink today, in honor of Magdalena. She passed away on Monday morning in her Momma and Daddy's arms. Magdalena had Edward's Syndrome. Her Mom, Julia, started keeping a blog in May of 2008, after she was told that her baby she was carrying was going to be born with Edward's. Go here to read her story. Quinn shares a class with Noah, Magdalena's Daddy, and has admired his courage and his faith in the Sustainer of our strength.

Today is the funeral. They've requested people attending the funeral wear pink, in honor of their precious baby girl. I'm not able to go, but am there in spirit.
Pray with me as they go through their grief.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Cake Withdrawal


I feel a lot better.

The vertigo has gone away, for the most part (I still have occasional twinges). I'm so glad.

I miss cake.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Proof A Photo Can Haunt You

Can you find me? Yeah, the creepy lookin' one. Please note: all the other girls are smiling (my sister-in-law, Kerri, on the far right-standing). I am not smiling. I am intimidating. And apparently modeling the most awesome hairstyle ever.

This is from Camp Ikthus, maybe in '97 or '98. We dressed that way (what way??) for Kangaroo Court. I loved it. I'm sure there are more of these out there.

Fun times.


The scan was clear.

We found out Friday afternoon that the scan was clear, which is good news (duh), but that leaves me still feeling dizzy and not knowing why.

I talked to the nurse, who seemed at a loss for words (did she want the scan to NOT be clear???). She said, "Well, do you want to come back in?". Um, why? I told her I would call them back if I wanted to talk to the doctor or if I needed a referral to see an ENT (ear, nose, and throat specialist). (Don't call us, we'll call you). I started thinking (ouch, OUCH!), and was determined to figure this thing out myself. At this point (around 4:00 Friday afternoon), I was actually feeling okay (the headache did not have its vice grips on anymore) and the dizzy "cloud" (that's what it kind of feels like in front of my eyes) had lessened.

So....what was the difference? I had taken a Meclizine pill (the prescribed medication for dizziness), which might have helped, but I had still been feeling bad three hours after I had taken it that morning. The only other thing I had done differently that morning was sliver off chocolate cake periodically throughout the morning. Pause... And I had eaten a fat slab of it the night before... and the night before that. And woke up feeling wretched the two mornings in a row after consuming it. Hmmm... Maybe it had something to do with sugar overload. I did google "can sugar contribute to dizziness?" and saw chat rooms and web sites where people were talking about that. Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) can cause dizziness and such and it does run in my family, but I didn't think that it would carry on for two weeks. However, I decided to limit (cutting way back) on my sugar over the next few days to see what would happen. On Friday night, I didn't have any dessert, and woke up Saturday without the hangover-type headache I had woken up with the prior two days, though the dizziness "cloud" was still there (but to a much lesser degree than the day before). I took another Meclizine, had an egg for breakfast (instead of cereal), and started taking a vitamin supplement called lipo-flavonoid (I picked it up at CVS), which is supposed to help with "inner ear health" and Meniere's disease (Jan, you should check this out!). By Saturday afternoon, I felt almost completely better. The dizziness cloud was gone and my headache was minuscule.

I will continue to lower my sugar intake and take the supplements for the remainder of this week to see how it goes. This morning I woke up with a little bit of the "cloud", but no headache.

I know you all are hanging on a thread waiting to see what will happen.

"Oh no, no chocolate cake? Whatever will she do? I just can't wait to see what happens this week with her new diet! This is so exciting."

I know, that's you. You'll just have to wait and see.

Friday, January 09, 2009

What Am I Doing Right Now?

...Listening to my Pandora station

...Running white vinegar through my dishwasher to help dishes not be "cloudy"

...bleaching my sheets because of a disasterous nosebleed Silas had. He kinda freaks when he sees blood. He rarely cries if he's injured, but if he sees blood (even if he's not injured), he totally freaks. The spray of blood on my sheets looks suspicious. Hopefully CSI won't come with one of their blue-light thingy-s (official name) to find blood. Well, hopefully they won't come at all. I'm guessing they won't. No murders here, lately.

...putting away a mound of laundry that looks suspiciously like I'm hiding something under. Like a dead body. The red chair in my bedroom attracks laundry.

I swear I'm not hiding a dead body.

What the heck? I must have CSI on the brain.

...comtemplating the CT Scan today, which I've come to believe will be a complete waste of time. And money. But we're going anyway.

...wearing pajamas, because I'm home from work. I like being home.

...packing for Grandma's, because we're going this afternoon to pick up Cheex (that's Felix), who's been with Grandmother this week. I've missed him so much.

...diagnosing myself, because I'm an expert at such things. I believe I have Benign Positional Vertigo, which (I remembered today - would've probably been helpful information yesterday at the doctor's office), that I was diagnosed with this 10 years ago. The exercises are what is horrid about the recovery.

...unless, of course, I have Meniere's Disease, which means I'll treat symptoms forever.

...Either one has no preventable measures. Unless you count "avoid head injuries", as preventable. Which I can't and can't.
What can I say? I'm clumsy.

...thinking about going to chiropractor to see if he can do something with my ear crystals. Sounds weird, but several people have mentioned it, and I've been reading about it today. And, call me crazy (too late), but I'm tired of being dizzy. And headachy. And nauseated.

...sigh... need to go finish get ready for stuff.

Thursday, January 08, 2009


So I went to the doctor today.

Long story (very, very long) short, I've got Vertigo.


Also, for your information, I'm not pregnant, I don't have high blood sugar, my blood pressure is a-okay, and, in general, I'm the picture of health.

Except for the nagging Vertigo symptoms, I'm topnotch.

The doctor was concerned about my Vertigo symptoms because there was no sign of why I should have them (usually, this time of year, Vertigo is accompanied with fluid behind the ears because of colds and/or allergies). So, he decided I should have a CT Scan.


I'm sure everything is fine. Though, there is a slight discomforting feeling when the doctor says, "I kinda wish I DID see something in your blood tests."

What does that mean?

He actually was very kind; thorough and gentle. I liked him.

Tomorrow I go get the CT Scan.

Today I'm taking medicine to help with the Vertigo. It's helping. A bit.

Here's to being normal soon. For me anyway.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009


I like eggs, but I don't like the smell of them cooking (until they are done) or the smell they have as they are washing in the dishwasher. Bleah.

The same goes with ground beef.

I always like the smell of EVOO (extra virgin olive oil, for those who aren't in the know. like me). I like the smell of it cooking or straight from the bottle. It just smells good.

The same goes with shampoo. Except that I never cook shampoo.

On Tuesdays, I eat lunch with Silas and his class at school. I get asked a lot of interesting questions, like today when little Joshua said, "Hey, Mrs. Hill, do you want to see how I can flatten my cheeseburger to make a pancake?" Ugh. No, but thank you for checking. Also, if children ask you, "Mrs. Hill, do you want to see us race to see who can drink our milk the fastest?", the correct answer is "no", otherwise I cannot be responsible for what you see coming out a six-year old's nose and mouth.

I still have Vertigo symptoms. Annoying, annoying, ANNOYING. I'm almost ready to go to the Doctor. Almost. I loathe a co-pay. And taking medicine. And going to the doctor to have them tell me, "Yes, ma'am, I'm afraid you have Vertigo. There's really not much you can do about it, but thanks for stopping by. Will that be debit or credit?" Or, even worse, to have them tell me (like a doctor did ten years ago when I had inner-ear Vertigo in college), "This is what I want you to do. Sit down in a chair and vigorously shake your head back and forth and up and down for thirty seconds. Then, immediately stop and focus on an object in the room. Do this three times a day. This will re-train your brain to not have Vertigo." And also make me throw-up. A lot. It's torture. I did it the other night (sheer desperation), and then slept for twelve hours after I couldn't open my eyes from the migraine headache it produced.

So, that being said, I'm afraid I'm going to be one of those old people who has to tell you all of my aches and pains. I don't want to be that way. So, nix the previous paragraph, unless you already read it, then, um, I'm sorry. Just pray I don't get pregnant while I have a blog. You're in for it then. I'm not a pleasant pregnant person. Alternate personality takes over.

Yawn. Well, my goodness, it's 8:07pm and I'm pooped out. Off to bed.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Resolving to be a Resolver

It's misty, humid, and gray outside. Supposed to rain all day. Matches my mood. The house is a total wreck, my Christmas decorations are up still, and I have three packed suitcases that need to be unpacked. I'm dizzy (though I feel there is improvement in this area-finally) and unmotivated. I haven't exercised in a week (because of dizziness, throwing up, and the like) and it sends my wee neurotic brain into overdrive.

And I'm reading all over about New Year's Resolutions.

There is something about them that appeals to me. Starting fresh, making a list, checking it twice, gonna find out who's naughty and nice (wait a sec- sidetracked). So that appeals to me, until I think about when I fail (which I inevitably will, because I'm a human being TA-DAH) and then I'm not interested in making the list at all. I hate looking at a list I've not completed. It reminds me that I'm a loser.

So if I were to make a list, it would be the total loser list of things I can accomplish in one day. Or something I already have accomplished, like "quit smoking". Well, I don't smoke so I can check it off. Or "be neurotic about laundry". Well, looky here, I AM neurotic about the laundry. Check. Or "lose 10 more pounds". See, that one just annoys me because I've been on a diet (ish) forever (like since I was a preteen) and it's never really accomplished because I'm never (ever) satisfied with my weight. Even if I did lose ten more pounds, then I would wonder how difficult it would be to lose five more. Grrrr.

It's interesting that I do accomplish things. I can run four to six miles at a time. I've been able to stabilize my weight for approximately four and a half years (not including pregnancy). I've become more organized (no, really) out of necessity and I'm not a complete slob (unless I'm sick - like now). I love to take pictures, and I see marked improvement in that area. I've become more confident in teaching about music and I try a lot of different recipes that would've scared me to try five years ago. See, I'm counting up all of my righteous accomplishments. Aren't I good?

Life is messy. Life is unpredictable. And I can't make a list of resolutions that will fail. It reminds me of my own humanity. And, quite frankly, I don't want to be reminded. Reminding me of my own humanity makes me realize that I need Jesus. I can't do jack on my own. I like to do things on my own. It's fun. And rewarding. And makes me a tad bit arrogant in my own failing skin. And though it's accomplished, it's flanked with failure, because I'm HUMAN.

So maybe I do need to make a list. Purposely reminding me that I need Jesus. Why does my flesh fight Him? Why do I not want to remember that I'm human? Why do I want to be a superhero? I want to remember my own accomplishments, even though they are streaked with my own sin and failure.

Maybe I will make a list.

Friday, January 02, 2009

Jump Rope Fun

My parents bought some outdoor fun things for the children to do while we were down there. The most popular thing that was purchased was a long strand of rope that we used for a jumprope. We took turns turning the jumprope and singing the old-school songs while the kids jumped. It was so fun!

Even Uncle Nick got in on the fun! Although he looks like he may be enjoying a leetle too much.


I've been very sick. Bleah. We are home now and I'm still recovering from what I thought was a wretched stomach bug, but am now thinking is some kind of vertigo or something. Dizzy and headachy, which came hand in hand with nausea. It made the last four days of our trip in Florida pretty miserable for me. And the trip home was like a 12 hour roller coaster (in a not good kind of way). And the baby is congested which means he pukes. A lot.

So, we're home now and recovering. I will post some pictures later from our trip. But am feeling a little dizzy right now.