Wednesday, December 27, 2006

My Kinda Gift

Not many ladies I know would love a Christmas gift like the one I got from my awesome husband. In fact, Janice asked Dave "are you absolutely sure she'll like this gift?"

(One lady I know would and if she reads this she should identify herself immediately...)

What means the most to me about this Christmas gift is the effort it took to plan this gift and execute it.

We are going to Tucson to watch the University of Arizona Wildcats play basketball and will spend the night at a great resort. He had to buy tickets from a broker in Atlanta, reserve a hotel room, make overnight arrangements for 5 kids, check our calendar, buy a sweatshirt and do all of this without me knowing. And he did it! Boy was I surprised and am I ever excited.

I've been a huge fan of U of A basketball for years. I had season tickets back in the day, for 4 out of the 5 years I was in Tucson (1984-1989). Lute Olsen is a great man and an amazing coach.

I think this is their year to win.

Go Cats!

I'll take lots of pictures! K?!

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The Magi

Matthew 2:9-12

9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen in the east went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold and of incense and of myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

Will you bow down and worship king Jesus with me?

He alone is worthy of our praise and adoration.

I am overjoyed,

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Say Cheese!

I know for a fact that James would rather have a root canal than take our annual Christmas picture. Here he is at a stressful moment. Sarah is happy though.

I assure you Dani (the pouty one) is only being silly in this photo. She LOVES to have her picture taken. She often takes them of herself.

Towards the end of our session the kids moved from the hearth to the floor and it made for a more relaxed and fun picture. Here the girls are being goofy and cute and well, James is too cool for words. Check out the collar.

And last but not least.

Our 2006 Christmas picture.

It's the best I can do with 5 squirrels, um, blessings.

Merry Christmas from our home to yours.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

From Heaven Above

This is a lovely book with beautiful illustrations. It is a Christmas carol written by Martin Luther in 1513 for his 5 year old son. The illustrator, Guy Porfirio, lives in Tuscon.

You can listen to it at The Cyber Hymnal

From Heaven Above To Earth I Come
Martin Luther

From Heaven above to earth I come,
To bear good news to every home;
Glad tidings of great joy I bring,
Whereof I now will say and sing.

To you, this night, is born a Child
Of Mary, chosen mother mild;
This tender Child of lowly birth,
Shall be the joy of all your earth.

’Tis Christ our God, Who far on high
Had heard your sad and bitter cry;
Himself will your Salvation be,
Himself from sin will make you free.

He brings those blessings long ago
Prepared by God for all below;
That in His heavenly kingdom blest
You may with us forever rest.

These are the tokens ye shall mark,
The swaddling clothes and manger dark;
There shall ye find the young Child laid,
By Whom the heavens and earth were made.

Now let us all, with gladsome cheer,
Follow the shepherds, and draw near
To see this wondrous Gift of God,
Who hath His own dear Son bestowed.

Give heed, my heart, lift up thine eyes!
What is it in yon manger lies?
Who is this Child, so young and fair?
The blessèd Christ Child lieth there!

Welcome to earth, Thou noble Guest,
Through Whom e’en wicked men are blest!
Thou com’st to share our misery,
What can we render, Lord, to Thee!

Ah, Lord, Who hast created all,
How hast Thou made Thee weak and small,
To lie upon the coarse dry grass,
The food of humble ox and ass.

Were earth a thousand times as fair,
Beset with gold and jewels rare,
She yet were far too poor to be
A narrow cradle, Lord, for Thee.

For velvets soft and silken stuff
Thou hast but hay and straw so rough,
Whereon Thou King, so rich and great,
As ’twere Thy heaven, art throned in state.

Thus hath it pleased Thee to make plain
The truth to us, poor fools and vain,
That this world’s honor, wealth and might
Are naught and worthless in Thy sight.

Ah, dearest Jesus, holy Child,
Make Thee a bed, soft, undefiled,
Here in my poor heart’s inmost shrine,
That I may evermore be Thine.

My heart for very joy doth leap,
My lips no more can silence keep,
I too must sing, with joyful tongue,
That sweetest ancient cradle song.

Glory to God in highest Heaven,
Who unto man His Son hath given,
While angels sing, with pious mirth,
A glad New Year to all the earth.


Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Around Our House

I've been snapping pictures just so I could participate in this fun day!

This was Boomama's great idea! And guess what? She loves Diet Coke. :)

Welcome! Come on in!

These are new this year. I bought them at Gold Canyon Candle Co. I can't wait to light them.

I love Costco! Even their Poinsettias are BIG!

This Nativity is very special to our family. It was given to our parents in 1972 and Nancy gave it to me several years ago. I think my Dad's parents gave it to them and I still have the original box from Marshall Fields. Dave is very kind to allow me to keep the box as it is in terrible shape and should be replaced. He understands.

I'll post more later but I must go now.

UPDATE I have time to add a few more.
Enjoy. And thanks for the comments.

Now I usually don't have fresh flowers around my house but I bought these to have for my dinner party on Saturday night. They are sitting on my kitchen table, can you see the white board in the background? :)

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Gourmet Again......

Baked Asparagus
Kathleen Daelemans

2 bunches asparagus, washed
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil
Coarse grained salt and cracked black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Place asparagus in a large plastic bag. Drizzle half the olive oil over the asparagus, seal the bag and shake until asparagus is coated evenly with the olive oil. If necessary, add only enough of the remaining olive oil to coat the asparagus. Place the asparagus in a single layer on a cookie sheet, season with salt and pepper. Bake until tender or crunchy depending upon your preference, about 12 to 20 minutes.

Serves: 8

Isn't that a great recipe? Easy and delicious.

And now, the most important part of the dinner, the whole reason I am going to all of this trouble ;-)

The dessert:

Creme Brulee
Alton Brown

1 quart heavy cream
1 vanilla bean, split and scraped
1 C. vanilla sugar, divided
6 large egg yolks
2 quarts hot water

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Place the cream, vanilla bean and its pulp into a medium saucepan set over medium-high heat and bring to a boil. Remove from the heat, cover and allow to sit for 15 minutes. Remove the vanilla bean and reserve for another use.

In a medium bowl, whisk together 1/2 C. sugar and the egg yolks until well blended and it just starts to lighten in color. Add the cream a little at a time, stirring continually. Pour the liquid into 6 (7 to 8 oz) ramekins. Place the ramekins into a large cake pan or roasting pan. Pour enough hot water into the pan to come halfway up the sides of the ramekins. Bake just until the creme brulee is set, but still trembling in the center, approximately 40-45 minutes. Remove the ramekins from the roasting pan and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 3 days.

Remove the creme brulee from the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes prior to browning the sugar on top. Divide the remaining ½ C. vanilla sugar equally among the 6 dishes and spread evenly on top. Using a torch, melt the sugar and form a crispy top. Allow the creme brulee to sit for at least 5 minutes before serving.

Serves: 6

My friend, Elizabeth is so excited to be the one to bring/prepare this dessert. She is happy to be out shopping for ramekins and a torch!!

The Menu

Hot Jalapeno Crab Dip
Caesar Salad
Bourbon Beef Tenderloin
Wild Rice Casserole
Baked Asparagus
Creme Brulee

You should try it sometime. I've gone to the trouble to collect the recipes, now you do it for your family. Won't they be surprised and blessed.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Gourmet Continued....

Main Course

Bourbon Beef Tenderloin
Paula Deen

1 cup bourbon
1 cup brown sugar
2/3 cup soy sauce
1 bunch parsley, leaves chopped
1/2 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 cups water
3 to 4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves chopped
1 (5-pound) beef tenderloin, silver connective tissue removed
Oil, to brush grill

Preheat grill or oven to 350 degrees F.
Prepare marinade by combining the bourbon, brown sugar, soy sauce, cilantro, lemon juice, Worcestershire sauce, water, and thyme in a bowl. Make sure the tenderloin has been cleaned and the tissues have been removed. Fold the tail end of the beef back underneath itself so that it is of uniform thickness and secure with butcher's string. Place meat in a dish and pour marinade over meat, cover, and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours, or up to overnight, turning meat over several times.

When grill is ready, place meat on oiled surface and reserve the liquid from the marinade. Cook over high heat with lid closed, turning meat often and occasionally basting with the marinade. Cook for approximately 25 minutes for medium rare.

Serve with horseradish cream on the side.

Serves: 8-10

Side Dish

Wild Rice Casserole

1 1/2 C. wild rice
2 cans beef consumme
2 cans water
1/2 C. + 2 T. butter
1 C. chopped onion
2 T. chopped green pepper
1/2 - 1 pound fresh mushrooms
1 C. whipping cream
1/2 C. grated parmesan cheese

Soak and rinse the rice through. Cook rice in consumme and water 45-60 minutes, cover slightly. Saute onion and green pepper. Saute mushrooms. Add to rice. Put rice mixture into 2 1/2 quart casserole. Pour cream over rice a and dot with butter. Cover with parmesan cheese.

Bake @ 350 for 30 minutes

Serves: 8-10

This is a side dish so it doesn't necessarily have to be a new recipe, plus I'd break the rules just to serve this to my guests. It's. That. Good. We grew up eating this at Christmastime and always with a tenderloin. I think the whipping cream makes this dish extra special.

Are you salivating yet?

Next Gourmet post....a very simple vegetable and my all time favorite dessert that I've never had homemade. I cannot wait for this dinner.

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Snow People on My Mind

Have you heard Willie Nelson's version of Frosty the Snowman? It's great and I'm not even a big fan of his.

I thought this cartoon was just darling and silly. HT: Janice.

This poor snowman got himself caught up in the latest man fad.

One more from
Artist Unknown

Adios Amigas

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Gourmet Night

We were invited to join a small group of friends (three other couples) for a Gourmet Dinner Club about a year ago. The host couple (think wife) picks the entire menu and then gives the recipes for the appetizer, salad or soup and dessert to the other three ladies. The hosts are responsible for the table setting, main course and side dishes.

The "rules" are simple. These must be new recipes and something you and your friends have not made before. The food should be special ie not spaghetti and meatballs, enchiladas or meatloaf. (Three regular meals around here). We only get together about once every three months, rotating host couples/homes. This way it does not burden any one couple.

I am having Gourmet at my house on December 16th and I will be sharing my recipes and decorating ideas over the course of the next few posts.

We will start with the appetizer, of course.

Hot Jalapeno Crab Dip
Emeril Lagasse

1 pound lump crabmeat
1 tsp. chopped garlic
½ C. chopped pickled jalapenos
¼ pound Monterey Jack cheese with jalapenos, grated
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. hot sauce
½ tsp. salt
½ C. mayonnaise
2 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated
1 recipe Toasted Croutons, recipe follows

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Combine the crabmeat, garlic, jalapenos, Monterey Jack, Worcestershire, hot sauce, salt and mayonnaise in a medium size mixing bowl. Toss gently to mix. Spoon the mixture into a medium-size mixing bowl. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese evenly on the top of the crabmeat mixture. Bake until golden brown and bubbly, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let sit for about 5 minutes before serving with the croutons.

Toasted Croutons:

1 loaf French bread (about 8 inches in diameter and 15 inches long), ends trimmed and cut crosswise into 1/4 –inch thick slices
5 T. olive oil
¼ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the bread slices on the baking sheet and brush them with half of the olive oil, then sprinkle them with 1/8 tsp of the salt and 1/8 tsp of the black pepper. Turn to slices over, and brush them with the remaining oil and sprinkle with the remaining salt and pepper. Bake for about 6 minutes, then turn the baking sheet around in the oven to ensure even browning. Bake until the croutons are lightly browned, about 6 more minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before serving.

Yield: about 32 croutons
Serves: 8

And next is the Salad. You may think it is odd that I picked a simple Caesar salad....well, after doing a little checking, none of us have ever made a real caesar salad from scratch. Costco caesars do not count here!!

Caesar Salad
Emeril Lagasse

4 garlic cloves
4 egg yolks
2 anchovies
1 T. Dijon mustard
Juice of two fresh lemons
1 C. olive oil
Cracked black pepper
2 large heads of romaine lettuce, washed, ribbed and patted dry
3 oz. Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
12 oz. of salad croutons

Rub the inside of a large wooden bowl with the garlic cloves. Remove the garlic cloves, and finely chop. Add the egg yolks, remaining garlic, anchovies and mustard to the bowl. Whisk until all of the ingredients are incorporated. Whisk in the lemon juice. Slowly drizzle in the olive oil, while whisking constantly. Whisk until all to the ingredients are incorporated. Season the dressing with salt and pepper. Gently tear the lettuce into bit-sized portions and add to the salad bowl. Using a hand-held grater, grate the cheese into the bowl. Add the croutons. Toss the salad completely and re-season if necessary. Serve the salad on cold salad plates.

Serves: 6-8

Stay tuned for the main course and a very special, Wisconsin side dish.

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Home At Last

Dave arrived home just as expected, Saturday night around 8:30. His trip went very well and he did not have any problems. Thank you for praying!

He ate at Cracker Barrel twice, both times he ordered fish and green beans. (!?)

He parked the truck in our driveway until we could take it down to the warehouse tonight. Here are a few shots of the new truck.

Tomorrow starts another week. The laundry machine is humming, the dryer buzzer just went off and dishes are in the sink. The house is decorated for Christmas and it looks very pretty. Four our of five children are sound asleep and one is still skipping around thinking of things to do to prevent her from going to bed. Her name is Hannah. Poor little Danielle is sick tonight with a fever and chills and a headache, she'll stay home and rest tomorrow. Hopefully it is not strep.

That's all for now. God bless you today and this upcoming week.

PS If you look closely, the truck in the previous post looks nothing like the one he brought home. Oh well, I tried :-0

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Dave's Excellent Adventure

My husband is driving from South Carolina to Phoenix this weekend in our brand new Mercedes! Oh, just kidding. I meant to say our brand new Chevy 5500.

Isn't she a beauty? Now picture it with a great Interstate Batteries logo on the box part.

He is in Greenville right now. He has already driven in heavy rain and fog. Will you pray for his safety? I have heard I-40 is a mess in Oklahoma and that Dallas got hit real hard. (I just got off the phone with him and he has decided to take the Southern route.)

I thought he should stop along the way to say hello to all of my blog friends but he didn't think that was necessary. Imagine that.

If my husband read this blog he might have to correct the type of truck I picked but I'm 99% sure this is the one. Close enough. A truck is a truck is a truck. ;-)

Wednesday, November 29, 2006


A cold front moved in and it is cold and blustery tonight! It may get down into the low 30s where we live so I brought my potted plants (the ones I could carry) in out of the cold.

Don't they look pretty in my house? (sink)

This little girl is tucked in and cozy warm too.

Hot cocoa anyone?

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Bitesize Book Review

When I find a great book I like to share it with as many people that will read it. I like to purchase several to have on hand and be able to give them away as needed. The book The Duties of Parents by J.C. Ryle is one of those books. I have purchased 10 at a time to be able share them with others.

I feel the same way about Bitesize Theology by Peter Jeffery. It's a little gem of a book. It is described as "an abc of the Christian faith". It has concise explanations of theological terms and concepts. I really like the "Think About It" section at the end of each chapter as well as the "It's Worth Quoting" quotes.

Here's what John MacArthur says about the book:

"Peter Jeffery has a unique gift for presenting difficult concepts precisely, with clear and simple language. Bitesize theology is both sound and simple- a combination that is all too rare in modern evangelical literature. This is an invaluable resource for both lay people and serious students of theology"

And here is a "It's Worth Quoting" quote from the chapter titled "God" to spark your interest:

"Nothing will so enlarge your intellect, nothing so magnify the whole soul of man, as a devout, earnest, continued investigation of the great subject of the Deity. Would you lose your sorrow? Would you drown your cares? Then go, plunge yourself in the Godhead's deepest sea; be lost in his immensity; and you shall come forth as from a couch of rest, refreshed and invigorated. I know nothing which can so comfort the soul; so calm the swelling billows of sorrow and grief; so speak peace to the winds of trial, as a devout musing upon the subject of the Godhead"

C.H. Spurgeon

Friday, November 24, 2006

Catch Up

Grandparent's Day At School

Thanksgiving! I'm thankful.


In this picture we are without Danielle and Sarah but have Nicholas with us. Don't mind my goofy face.

All is well. It has been a very fun few days. Thanksgiving was wonderful. Except my turkey wasn't completely cooked after 3 1/2 hours in the bag and it was time to eat. We were able to carve enough for everyone to enjoy and thankfully we also had a ham. After dinner I promptly threw the legs and wings and extra meat in to a stock pot and cooked up a huge batch of turkey broth. I'm pretty sure Tom was not completely thawed and that was the problem. Oh well, what can you do? I'm sure my soup will be delicious.

Have a great weekend!

Friday, November 17, 2006

Oh So Cute

A friend brought her brand new Havenese puppies to school and I'm in love. They are absolutely precious. Her puppies are pure white and only 8 weeks old. She found the breeder in MO and they were shipped to Phoenix. I had not heard of this breed until now. Isn't he adorable? Maybe someday......

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Pumpkin Bread

Recipe by Pillsbury
Pumpkin by Libby

2 C. pumpkin
3 C. sugar
1 C. oil
2/3 C. water
4 eggs
3 1/2 C. flour **
2 tsp. soda
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ginger

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease and flour bottoms only of two loaf pans. In large bowl, blend first 5 ingredients. Beat 1 minute at medium speed. Add remaining ingredients; blend at low speed until moistened. Beat one minute at medium speed. Pour batter into prepared pans. Bake at 350 for 60-75 minutes. Cool 5 minutes; remove from pans. Cool completely.

**I used 2 1/2 C. fresh ground soft white wheat and 1 C. white unbleached flour and it turned out just fine. Next time I'm going to try to decrease the amount of sugar by 1 C.

This is a no-fail recipe. The bread is always moist and delicious!!

I also use the Libby Pumpkin Pie recipe every year and it too is a winner.

Do you like pumpkin?

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Anniversary and Delurk Day

It’s my One Year Blogiversary here at Just Janet. Hard to believe I’ve been doing this for one whole year. It has been an interesting year on this blog. I felt like quitting many times and lately my posts have been very lame and not consistent. I didn’t have a clear purpose for writing this blog when I started but it has evolved into something very special. I share this blog with my real life sisters in Wisconsin, Missori and Arizona and it is a wonderful way for me to keep in touch with them. In fact, I think this silly form of communication has brought us closer in our relationships. I also share this blog with other fine ladies; some live here in the Phoenix area and others around the country who I’ve met online. My goal now is to continue to share my life with my sisters and friends and to share the love of Christ with who ever will read this crazy blog. And may God be glorified!


This is a special day, so if you are a lurker here at JJ, today is the day you should delurk and say hello. Don’t be shy.

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

What? Christmas Music Already?

Well, yes, when it's this good I have to share....

I am a huge fan of James Taylor and have listened to his music all of my life so when I saw this at Sam's Club I grabbed it. This is classic James. I think it can be described as folk/pop/jazz/blues Christmas. It has a nice mix of traditional and sacred.

He works with a man named Dave Grusin on this CD. I had not heard of this man but after reading a little about him I now know how talented he is and it is not a surprise that this CD is so good.

My favorite songs on this CD include Go Tell It On The Mountain, Some Children See Him and In The Bleak Midwinter.

Buy this CD, you won't be disappointed.

Fun little note about James Taylor. My brother Jim and his wife Susan (of ten years) live on Martha's Vineyard. Susan has known James for years and invited him to their wedding. My goofy sisters that attended the wedding were soooo excited to see James that they were snapping pictures with him in the background. Gee, do you think he noticed? I know I would have been even more of a goof had I been there.

OK, I'll put the CD away for one week. That's it. And then it's out for the remainder of the Christmas season.


Sunday, November 12, 2006

A Taste of Fall

The trees in Prescott were yellow.

They were stunning!

We had a wonderful time in spite of my upset stomach and 'issues' Friday night. Remember in my last post I mentioned I was feeling run down? Well, it hit me Friday night while we were in Prescott.

Hannah and Jessie helped me make my bed and Stacey and her mom juiced organic carrots and made me drink it. I crawled in to bed and slept. I was able to get up and enjoy Saturday, I think the carrots did the trick. I am seriously going to be shopping for a juicer. I've heard good things about the Omega brand juicer. I think if I set out to juice 3X/week that is a reasonable goal. Our family does not consume enough veggies so this will be a great way to get them down. I will probably start with carrots and apples and then experiment from there. I know parsley and beets are very good for you so eventually I should add them.

Anyway, all is well. We had a wonderful time with wonderful friends and I love the town of Prescott more with every visit. I could very easily live there full time.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

This and That

Hello, I haven't really felt like posting lately. We've been very busy and I have felt a little worn down and very tired. Here's what has been happening...

* Volleyball ended two weeks ago and the girls were undefeated!

* Football ended last Saturday and the boys were undefeated!

* Today was an early release day and I had 9 girls here at the house. They ate pizza, fresh veggies and sweets and jumped on the trampoline, played volleyball and laughed loudly!

* Emmitt continues to WOW me every week. I remembered to watch. :)

* Mack, Nancy's 14 year old golden retriever who has lived with us for 3 years, is being a naughty boy when we are gone. If we have left a low window or the window next to our French doors open he busts through them. He has ruined 3 screens. The first time it happened Dave thought we had been broken in to and pretended he was Barney. Goof.

* Hannah and I get to go to Prescott on Friday with Stacey and Jessica and we will not hurry home on Saturday :) I am looking forward to a little get away. It will be nice and chilly up there.

* It looks like Nancy will be moving back to Wisconsin some day soon. Her house is on the market here in Phoenix. I am so sad. She has lived here for around 18 years and frankly I can't imagine what it will be like without her here. I woke up this morning and cried, poor Dave didn't really know what to say or do. She is like a mother to me and a very young and lovely grandmother to my children. She loves them and spoils them in such a sweet way. My emotions about this are very strange to me. I feel very sad and a little lost. Empty. Heart broken.

Well, now you can see why I didn't feel like posting much lately.

God Bless you today.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Meet Cindy

My sister Cindy teaches kindergarten at an 'at risk' school in Columbia MO. She has considered other teaching jobs, with higher pay and in the upscale neighborhoods but she doesn't want to leave these precious little ones. They need her and she loves them.

Here they are at a pumpkin patch! Cindy is on the left in the orange coat looking very happy and festive.

I love you Cindy. Keep up the excellent work. Hope you don't mind me posting the picture! ;-)

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Are You Angry?

We are privileged to have a great man (with a gorgeous wife) :) teaching through The Heart of Anger by Lou Priolo in a class before our Sunday service. I have read parts of this book but now we are going chapter by chapter with discussion and teaching. What a blessing! This is not really a book about angry children, it's about how you and I can deal with our own sinful attitudes, behavior and anger and then begin to apply it to our children. Like P. said today, we must get the log out of our own eye before we can go to someone else with a complaint. Dave and I have a little saying/chant...."log eye, log eye, log eye".

I highly recommend you read this book. Better yet, move to Phoenix for the next 10+ weeks and be blessed by our friend's teaching and encouragement.

Thank you P. & M., we appreciate you!

Thursday, October 26, 2006

A Heritage

Lauren and I ran in to the Mobil to grab a Diet Coke and apple juice and we had a very sad conversation at the check out. It went something like this.

Mean Lady to Lauren: Do you want one of these Halloween bags?

Lauren: Sure!

Mean Lady: Do you have any brothers or sisters? Would they like one?

Lauren holding her fingers up: Yes, I have 4 sisters and 1 brother? (close enough)

Mean Lady looking at me in shock: You have 6 children? (Gasp.Gasp.)

Me: No, actually I have 5 children. We just dropped the others off at school.

Mean Lady: Five Children. (Cough) This must be the happiest time of your day. Getting rid of them.

Me in shock: No, not really.

Mean Lady: Well, how old is the oldest?

Me: Oh, that's my daughter, she's 14.

Really Mean Lady: Ugh. Oh my G*d, that's even worse, a teenager!

Me: No not at all, she's a great girl. (I love you Hannah)

Really Mean Lady: Oh, just you wait, it's coming.

Me: Ok, bye.

Really Mean Lady as were walking out the door: Can you believe that lady has 5 kids. Ugh.

I called Stacey in shock and we have a scheme planned. All of us in the area with large families are going to parade our sweet, polite and well behaved (no, not perfect)children through the Mobil and show this lady what children really are....BLESSINGS!!

Psalm 127:2

Behold, children are a heritage from the LORD,
The fruit of the womb is a reward.

UPDATE 1:57 pm
A friend and mother of 9 (yes 9 children) loaded up her kiddos and took them in to the Mobil station. The Really Mean Lady wasn't there, can you believe it? The good news is that a very friendly man complimented my friend on her beautiful and well behaved children. Happy day and nice people.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Oh. My. Heavens.

This man can dance.

I remembered to watch Dancing With The Stars tonight. Two steps into his second dance and I was screaming (I'm not kidding) and laughing and cheering. And, yes, I was all alone, stuck in the corner of our house having a blast watching Emmitt get down with his bad self!!

Emmitt is not the best dancer out there, it's Mario if you ask me, but his style is amazing and fun and that smile of his is just too much! I love the soul he adds to each dance. He can dance and he is a pleasure to watch. (Nice earrings, Emmitt.)

A few other Dancing thoughts....

* Joey's first dance melted my heart. I love Gene Kelly and that was a very special dance. I am so familiar with Singing In The Rain that I recognized all the steps.

* Jerry Springer's fan club (aka white trash) should stop voting for him. He's a horrible dancer but seems sincere and has improved.

* Monique is a lovely dancer but I didn't like all the stomping, it was a little over the top. Monique and Joey are in a close second, IMHO.

* I LOVE the shouting judge. He cracks me up!! Where does he come up with this stuff?

150 Things

I copied this from Donna. Highlighted are the things I have done. Remember I am 40 years old, some of these were done when I was a little girl or a wild college girl. Feel free to ask questions if I have sparked your curiosity. :)

01. Bought everyone in the bar a drink
02. Swam with wild dolphins
03. Climbed a mountain
04. Taken a Ferrari for a test drive
05. Been inside the Great Pyramid
06. Held a tarantula
07. Taken a candlelit bath with someone
08. Said “I love you” and meant it
09. Hugged a tree
10. Bungee jumped
11. Visited Paris
12. Watched a lightning storm at sea
13. Stayed up all night long and saw the sun rise
14. Seen the Northern Lights
15. Gone to a huge sports game (and survived the crush afterwards)
16. Walked the stairs to the top of the leaning Tower of Pisa
17. Grown and eaten your own vegetables
18. Touched an iceberg
19. Slept under the stars
20. Changed a babyÂ’s diaper
21. Taken a trip in a hot air balloon
22. Watched a meteor shower
23. Gotten drunk on champagne
24. Given more than you can afford to charity
25. Looked up at the night sky through a telescope
26. Had an uncontrollable giggling fit at the worst possible moment
27. Had a food fight
28. Bet on a winning horse
29. Asked out a stranger
30. Had a snowball fight
31. Screamed as loudly as you possibly can
32. Held a lamb
33. Seen a total eclipse
34. Ridden a roller coaster
35. Hit a home run
36. Danced like a fool and not cared who was looking
37. Adopted an accent for an entire day
38. Actually felt happy about your life, even for just a moment
39. Had two hard drives for your computer
40. Visited all 50 states
41. Taken care of someone who was drunk
42. Had amazing friends
43. Danced with a stranger in a foreign country

44. Watched wild whales
45. Stolen a sign
46. Backpacked in Europe
47. Taken a road-trip
48. Gone rock climbing
49. Midnight walk on the beach
50. Gone sky diving
51. Visited Ireland
52. Been heartbroken longer than you were actually in love

53. In a restaurant, sat at a strangerÂ’s table and had a meal with them

54. Visited Japan
55. Milked a cow
56. Alphabetized your CDs
57. Pretended to be a superhero
58. Sung karaoke
59. Lounged around in bed all day
60. Played touch football
61. Gone scuba diving
62. Kissed in the rain
63. Played in the mud
64. Played in the rain
65. Gone to a drive-in theater
66. Visited the Great Wall of China
67. Started a business
68. Fallen in love and not had your heart broken
69. Toured ancient sites
70. Taken a martial arts class
71. Played D&D for more than 6 hours straight
72. Gotten married
73. Been in a movie
74. Crashed a party
75. Gotten divorced
76. Gone without food for 5 days
77. Made cookies from scratch
78. Won first prize in a costume contest
79. Ridden a gondola in Venice
80. Gotten a tattoo
81. Rafted the Snake River
82. Been on television news programs as an “expert”
83. Got flowers for no reason
84. Performed on stage
85. Been to Las Vegas
86. Recorded music
87. Eaten shark
88. Kissed on the first date
89. Gone to Thailand
90. Bought a house
91. Been in a combat zone
92. Buried one/both of your parents
93. Been on a cruise ship
94. Spoken more than one language fluently
95. Performed in Rocky Horror
96. Raised children
97. Followed your favorite band/singer on tour
99. Taken an exotic bicycle tour in a foreign country
100. Picked up and moved to another city to just start over
101. Walked the Golden Gate Bridge
102. Sang loudly in the car, and didnÂ’t stop when you knew someone was looking
103. Had plastic surgery
104. Survived an accident that you shouldnÂ’t have survived
105. Wrote articles for a large publication
106. Lost over 100 pounds
107. Held someone while they were having a flashback
108. Piloted an airplane
109. Touched a stingray
110. Broken someoneÂ’s heart
111. Helped an animal give birth
112. Won money on a T.V. game show
113. Broken a bone
114. Gone on an African photo safari
115. Had a facial part pierced other than your ears
116. Fired a rifle, shotgun, or pistol
117. Eaten mushrooms that were gathered in the wild
118. Ridden a horse
119. Had major surgery
120. Had a snake as a pet
121. Hiked to the bottom of the Grand Canyon
122. Slept for more than 30 hours over the course of 48 hours
123. Visited more foreign countries than U.S. states
124. Visited all 7 continents
125. Taken a canoe trip that lasted more than 2 days
126. Eaten kangaroo meat
127. Eaten sushi
128. Had your picture in the newspaper
129. Changed someoneÂ’s mind about something you care deeply about
130. Gone back to school
131. Parasailed
132. Touched a cockroach
133. Eaten fried green tomatoes
134. Read The Iliad - and the Odyssey
135. Selected one “important” author who you missed in school, and read
136. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
137. Skipped all your school reunions
138. Communicated with someone without sharing a common spoken language
139. Been elected to public office
140. Written your own computer language
141. Thought to yourself that youÂ’re living your dream
142. Had to put someone you love into hospice care
143. Built your own PC from parts
144. Sold your own artwork to someone who didnÂ’t know you
145. Had a booth at a street fair
146. Dyed your hair
147. Been a DJ
148. Shaved your head
149. Caused a car accident
150. Saved someoneÂ’s life

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Great News!

Stacey, Josh's mom, just called me from the doctor's office. His scans came back ALL CLEAR!! The next step is to get the Broviac removed. We are rejoicing and praising the Lord for his goodness and mercy. I have no words, only happy tears. Thank you for praying and please take time to thank God for all He has done.

Psalm 145
A Praise of David.

1 I will extol You, my God, O King;
And I will bless Your name forever and ever.
2 Every day I will bless You,
And I will praise Your name forever and ever.
3 Great is the LORD, and greatly to be praised;
And His greatness is unsearchable.

4 One generation shall praise Your works to another,
And shall declare Your mighty acts.
5 I[a] will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
And on Your wondrous works.[b]
6 Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts,
And I will declare Your greatness.
7 They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness,
And shall sing of Your righteousness.

8 The LORD is gracious and full of compassion,
Slow to anger and great in mercy.
9 The LORD is good to all,
And His tender mercies are over all His works.

10 All Your works shall praise You, O LORD,
And Your saints shall bless You.
11 They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom,
And talk of Your power,
12 To make known to the sons of men His mighty acts,
And the glorious majesty of His kingdom.
13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
And Your dominion endures throughout all generations.[c]

14 The LORD upholds all who fall,
And raises up all who are bowed down.
15 The eyes of all look expectantly to You,
And You give them their food in due season.
16 You open Your hand
And satisfy the desire of every living thing.

17 The LORD is righteous in all His ways,
Gracious in all His works.
18 The LORD is near to all who call upon Him,
To all who call upon Him in truth.
19 He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him;
He also will hear their cry and save them.
20 The LORD preserves all who love Him,
But all the wicked He will destroy.
21 My mouth shall speak the praise of the LORD,
And all flesh shall bless His holy name
Forever and ever.

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Scooby and Rednecks

I'm posting this picture for my blog friend Cindy. She wrote a funny post about annoying inflatables she saw at Sam's Club a few weeks ago. Well, this guy can be found 5 doors down from my house and every time I drive by it I think of her. Isn't he cute? I agree with her conclusion's silly to waste your money on these goofy halloween decorations. I'm saving my money for nice harvest type decorations like pumpkins and fall wreaths.

I also thought of Cindy when I heard a country song on the radio tonight called "Redneck Yacht Club". Listen to it here, ya'll.

Cindy, she's my hero. :-)

Monday, October 16, 2006

I Love My Crock Pot

Now that the temperatures have dropped below 85 degrees it's time for some soups and stews :-0 I am very thankful for my crock pot and don't know what I'd do without it on busy days. Today I have a low carb vegetable beef soup cooking. I found this recipe in a cookbook that belongs to Janice. It is "Better Homes and Garden low-carb slow cooker recipes".

My other favorite slow cooker cookbook is this gem. I got it at Costco a few years ago.

One of our favorite recipes in this book is the chicken in a pot. It is basically homemade chicken soup, you can add rice or noodles or make it thick like a stew.

So, tonight it's veggie soup and later in the week I'm going to try beef and red bean chili. Doesn't that sound good, it calls for chipotle peppers!

Do you use your slow cooker? Do you have any yummy, low carb recipes for me?

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Facing the Giants

Now this is the kind of movie I'll spend my money on....what about you? Do you plan on seeing Facing the Giants? I complain all the time about the trash at the movie theaters and we rarely take our children to the movies but we hope to see this one very soon.

I have read two positive reports so far from two fellow bloggers and homeschool moms.

Let me know what you think. And I'll be sure to give a short review after I've seen it.