Pink Ice Cream and Old T.V.

I must have not had enough adult interaction, lately.  I sit down to write and the white of the screen just grows and grows…and it mocks me a little bit, too.  Really, I think the most interesting thing I’ve done lately is redye my hair cause the pink was getting a little dull.


Not dull now!

The kids and I took a jaunt to the pond for about an hour and pretended to fish (I need to find all the fishing gear!), and then we made a quick ice cream run on the way home. That was the sad part of the day, because in her gleeful excitement, Tiny Dancer opened the gas station door on her own foot (something I’ve totally done, by the way) and got a dirty, nasty cut that had to be doctored before ice cream time. The plan was popcorn, ice cream, and a movie; but we ended up watching Leave It to Beaver episodes instead.


(Oh, does that not look like fun to you city-people?! Hehe.)


I’m so glad my kids love the old shows! I think it’s just a matter of training them to, actually. But we’ve been watching Andy Griffith and Dick Van Dyke since they were itty bitty. They love all of it, now. And I swear that black and white t.v makes kids 50% calmer than color (though I have no scientific proof). I can’t wait to introduce them to I Love Lucy. It’s a toss up whether I’m saving to buy Lucy or Little House, first. But I want to read them the Little House series before I buy them the seasons, I think.

What were your top three favorite shows as a kid? Mine were Little House on the Prairie, I Love Lucy, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. And yes, I realize that only one of those reveals that I am actually thirty-three years old. I did have a few solid years of The Brady Bunch, too.

What are your kids’ top three shows, today? In what ways has kids’ t.v. improved in the past twenty or thirty years…and in what ways has it not (in your opinion)?

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Hair, and Hair Related Problems

Last week, I decided we were in desperate need of some new family pictures. So, I asked a friend if she’d mind meeting us early Sunday morning to get some shots by the river before church. And, like good friends do, she agreed.

I realize that to call any portion of the following three days’ happening “disastrous” might sound melodramatic. I realize that. Now, let me tell you about the disastrous things that then happened. Ha.

First, Bay Bit cut her hair…again. And by “cut” I mean “to the scalp,” and right on the top of her forehead! If you’ve been around here for awhile, you know that this is not the first time I’ve been forced to get very creative with Bay Bit’s hair. After I threw a hissy fit and tried, once again, to explain to her that while a good trim does (seem to) make hair grow faster, obliterating ones hair is not the fast track to Rapunzelhood, I began to asses and fix. I spent the following half hour trying to work up some layers and side-swept bangs that, if fixed right, would cover the crime. And when I finished, I sighed, “OK, that will work well for pictures. But pleasedon’teverdothatagain!”

A day later (because I was going crazy, remember??), I sent them to my mom’s for the day. Henceforth, my mother shall me known as “The Butcher,” because she spotted the damaged area on her granddaughter’s head and decided she had a grandmotherly obligation to further fix the problem. And she must have been happy with her efforts (better known as pixie bangs), because she brought my daughter home without so much as a downtrodden look of remorse! This led to my second hissy fit.

[I love you, Mom! It’s just that I have no other stories to tell. Ha.]

I calmed down when I realized that pixie bangs can also be side-swept, and I proceeded to gather outfits for the following morning’s shoot. To the last microscopic detail, the next fifteen hours went like clockwork…

Baths, hairdry, sleep…curl, spray, dress. We were off to church with time to spare (and looking pretty adorable, too)! What I couldn’t have been expected to plan for, however, were the 50 mph winds that nearly blew my door off its hinges when we arrived.

We decided to wait until later in the day, so I squirmed when a sweet teenager played with Cuddle Bug’s hair during worship and completely destroyed her curls. The wind still howled loudly after church, so we waited until after lunch…and then after dinner. Meanwhile, the kids became increasingly disheveled and I internalized my hissy fit trifecta.

Needless to say, no pictures were taken in the making of this post. However, we did arrive early to church!

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School and Summer

This morning, I woke up sick. Surprisingly sick. Don’t you love it when sickness is surprising? And Bay Bit woke up with the exact same symptoms. When I got out of bed to let out the dog, though, the air was thick with smoke. So I think that explains the weird throat and sniffles; but, really, it’d be better news if we were just sick. We’re praying for our firefighters. Summer can be pretty scary in the mountains, and it would be a heck-of-a-lot scarier without them.

I’m sending the kids to Grandma’s tomorrow, and that’s just all there is to it. They’re driving me nuts this week; nuts, I tell you! We have one more month of school before our one-month summer break. Technically, we’d planned to be year round homeschoolers, but I decided that we needed  a little gone-fishin’ time. I might be looking forward to it more than they are…it’s a toss up.

Next year, I will have two second graders, two first graders (who are gonna have it pretty easy cause they’ve been following along this year) and an officially official preschooler. Baby Bear is so eager for school. Of course, I work with him here and there, but he hasn’t had anything even remotely structured, yet. He’s ready, though! Yesterday morning, he got right up in my face and said, “Hey…Mom, if yow enemy is hungwie, give him food to eat. If he is thuwsty, give him watu to dwink.”

And I melted into a big gooey puddle that the big kids had to clean up.

But, really, I didn’t even know he’d been paying attention during Bible. Yes, this is gonna be fun! And by next year I’ll have my school room back, meaning we can use our kitchen table for…

[drum roll please]

FOOD! Yea!

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Thoughts, Grateful Thoughts

I have so many stories to tell you. So many thoughts are pinned up inside me today, and it’s just not the right time to share them. Patience and blogging, they don’t mesh well. But I’ve finally come to that place where I can dial my best friend and not tell her that thing I’m dying to…the real reason I called. Timing, God is outside of it and even He, especially He, practices the importance of it.

I can tell you that I’m excited about this next move in my life. I’m excited about this beautiful, largely godless, poverty ridden state that I have the absolute pleasure of living in. I’m excited to get out in it and be a part of it. I’m grateful for the third trailer that I will have lived in in as many years. I’m grateful for humility, even when it comes through complete and utter humiliation. I’m grateful that I know God speaks, and I’m grateful for what He’s bent down and told me about this season. I’m grateful for my book, a book I absolutely believe He gave me. I’m grateful for my husband. He gave me a story he didn’t want to give me…and I didn’t want to receive it. But, God. But, God! I am so grateful for my family!

My life isn’t pretty. There is nothing about me that is worthy of envy. I am broken, poor, poured out. Maybe God is using me for the sole purpose of convincing you He can use you in spades. He’s certainly not using me because of anything good in me. But my hands are open, willing. On peaceful, still-water days, I can feel His hands…placing mine on my cross. And His voice whispers gently, as I’m quiet, while I’m broken, “It’s time to get up now. Follow me.”

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I Might as Well Try to Get Paid!

I like Facebook. My favorites hangouts are the private groups (if you don’t have one of those, get-ya-one). They’re the perfect way to use Facebook, in my opinion. You can have a thousand friends and only share your really personal life (or, you know, those embarrassing stories that would make your mama blush) with a few. This post, though, came about because of what I insist on posting for all to read.

Cause, apparently, I have only three things on my mind, lately: food, Pandora, and Roku.

And this post isn’t about food.

No, last night my status read, “In case y’all didn’t know, cause you NEED to know…Pandora through Roku is sans commercials.” And after I answered everyone’s questions about what the heck a Roku is, I thought, “Hmmm…I wonder if Roku would pay me for this?!”

And I guess they will!

Here’s the deal, y’all. My brother gave me a Roku box (probably one of the first ever made) three years ago for Christmas. We were sans t.v. at the time, and apparently he thought that we needed more entertainment in our lives. Today, we’re still using the same Roku box, and we’ve never even thought about upgrading to cable or dish or whatever.

Right now, we’re watching The Electric Company (which we like to do before phonics) on Netflix. For the rest of the day, our Roku will stream Pandora (DC Talk radio, thankyouverymuch). We’ll probably rent a movie though Amazon, tonight (because I’ve been promising the kids that we’d rent The Muppets). And after the kids go to bed, I’m going to watch the House season finale on HuluPlus. – And those or only some of the channels that are available by plugging that little black box into your t.v.!

The most commonly asked question about Roku is, “What am I going to pay monthly for Roku?”

The answer to that is, “As much or as little as you want!” There are quite a few free Roku channels (though none quite as appealing as Netflix or HuluPlus), so you could just buy the box and be done! There is no monthly charge for Roku itself, you’re only buying the box (one-time purchase). Netflix charges monthly, as does HuluPlus. Also, Roku offers additional paid channels (though, I’ve never even felt the need to try them).

I’ve overheard quite a few of you questioning your t.v. bill, or wondering if you simply have too many channels. If you’re thinking about making the break from t.v. without completely making the break…

Well, obviously, I think you should get a Roku!

205627_Stream on your TV. Not your PC.

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What’s the Worst That Could Happen?!

Rachel E., you, my dear, are the winner of Jackie’s “How to Spread Sanity on a Cracker“. You sound like a true cheese lover…so I know you’re gonna love this book! Just shoot me an e-mail with your mailing address, OK?

For the rest of you, I have a question. Have you ever tried to sneak in a nap in the middle of the day? If you have, what’s the worst thing that has happened as a result?

For me, my answer is now easy. I’m an extremely light sleeper, so I’ve never been too concerned about closing my eyes while the kids watch an afternoon movie. I might even sneak in ten minutes of scattered sleep as a result. But, yesterday (you know, when I walked the kids to church), no one was quite as worn out as I’d hoped they’d be me.

I put on a movie, grabbed my Baby Bear, and closed my eyes. This time, though, my sleep was not exactly scattered. Nope, but that’s what the kids did when they were sure Mamma and baby brother were really sleeping.

I woke up to a freshly bathed dog (who now has blue toenails and smells like my favorite perfume) and a washed (but not nearly dried) bathroom floor. And, alright, it’s pretty funny now that I think about it. However, when you’re startled out of a nap by a very wet dog who, in the glee of being freed from the bathtub, lands on the couch and on top of your face…well, it takes at least twenty-four hours for that sort of thing to become funny.

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If You Really Miss Me, I’ll Blog

I kinda love you guys, you know that?! And when you check in because your favorite (OK, one of your many favorite) bloggers just doesn’t really blog anymore…and that worries you because you care…

…it makes me all teary-eyed and completely determined to do better. I will do better.

In fact, for every day of blogging I miss (for the next 30 days), I’ll give away a copy of my new book. It’s not available for sale, yet, but it will be before the 30 days are out!

Also, I’ll announce the winner of my current contest tomorrow. So if you want to win a copy of Jackie’s fabulously fattening and funny cookbook, be sure and comment before I make the announcement.

As far as blogging goes, I might as well stick my toes in the water tonight…

My house was clean – very clean – yesterday, and today it’s a complete disaster. Oh, the joys of being an materially enslaved American in a small home. Still, it seems that we’re going to be small home dwellers for quite awhile longer. We’re moving, again. But you’d move, too, if you saw the chance to live next door to your parents and some of your kids’ (and mine) best friends! They’re so excited they can hardly stand it.

And now, so is my mom! She’s finding out the same way you are…by reading my blog! My dad is probably less thrilled. He hates crowds. Ha.



This morning, Papa Bear needed the van for work and the kids and I wanted to go to church. Our home church is two towns over, but you can see the local “United” church from our house. So, we walked. Of course, by the time we got there, the only available seats were on the front row. They began asking visitors to stand and announce themselves while we were still making our way down the aisle. We made it quietly to our seats, and I counted my ducks as they filed into our row…

…and then I walked back down the aisle to retrieve Baby Bear (who had become distracted by a plate of cake).

I’m not a hymns and robes kind of gal, but the people were precious, the preacher masterfully incorporated Calvin and Hobbs (always impressive)…and thankfully, no, miraculously, even Baby Bear went almost willingly to Sunday school. And sometimes, a half hour break is worth a twenty minute walk.

At least, I think it is.

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