Sunday, July 31, 2005

Another Journal?

I've started another journal.  I know - I already have two.  This one is mainly for me, but I am willing to keep it public because in it I share about my relationship with Jesus Christ.  The Word of God has sustained me through every day of my life.  I want to share that with others. 

Please feel free to go by and visit.  If it's not your cup of tea, that's okay.  I welcome comments and questions, but won't argue theology with you. 

The name of my new journal is Blessings By Day .  Pop in and say hi.


Saturday, July 30, 2005

Another Survey

From Patrick, I got this survery - might as well speak out

"Another SurveyI found this survey over at Dave's "Random Thoughts from a Progressive Mind."  Rather than forcing my answers into the small places, I thought I'd give the extended versions:"

Abortion:  I'm absolutely against it.  I understand when the mother's life is threatened, but I can't stand the thought of the frivolous slaughter of unborn children. 

Death Penalty:  I have a hard time with this.  I truly believe there are people who deserve to die for their crimes, but I'd hate to be the one handing out the sentence.

Prostitution:  The worlds oldest profession?  What a shame.  I guess you can't legislate morality, but all for making it illegal.

Alcohol: The legal age should be 21.  Chronic drinkers shouldn't have a drivers license. We need to remember that alcohol is a drug.

Marijuana:  A dangerous starter drug.  I don't care what others say.  After a while you want more.

Other drugs:  (Assuming we mean currently-illegal drugs)  This is a no-brainer. It needs to stay illegal.

Illegal Immigrants:  The operative word is illegal.  There is a right way to enter the country and a wrong way.  Everyone should follow the same rules. (this is Patrick's answer, but I can't go any better)

Smoking: I quit.  Everyone should quit.

Drunk Driving:  Tougher sentences.  Make the first conviction mandatory jail time.  Drunk drivers need to be OFF the road.

Cloning:  This is to scary to think about. I know it's happening under our noses, but I am opposed.

Racism:  It's a hurtful thing.  Maybe we should bring our children up colorblind, blind to other religions and cultures.  That will help.

Premarital Sex:  Listen, there's only ONE first time. That should happen on your wedding night with your beloved.

Religion:  Not to be confused with spirituality.  Zealots from any belief can cause serious problems in society.  If we all, no matter what religion we espouse, could try loving one another, religion would never be a problem.

The War in Iraq:  I'll probably get a lot of flak over this, but I believe we have done the right thing. I applaud the men and women who are selflessly serving our freedom there.  I wish there were no such thing as war, but I understand the necessity.

Bush:  Our president, right or wrong.  I appreciate his boldness.

Downloading Music:  I've never done that.  don't understand why anyone would steal.

Legal Drinking Age:  Definitely 21.  It's a privilege, not a right.

Porn:  Well, obviously I am opposed. Don't like it - think its stupid.  So there.

Suicide: It happens.  I do understand the depression that leads to the desire to die, but its a sad commentary on life when death looks better than the alternative. 

Blessings, all!


Hot Night on the Old Town

Last night was WONDERFUL!  Andrea had a church girls' slumber party and Rob and I had "date night"  It's not too often we get one of these.  Andrea pretty much goes everywhere we go.  For the most part, we are a 24/7 family.  I go to work and Rob stays home with Andrea. 

We decided on Thursday night that her night away would be a perfect time for us to spend a little quality time.  I got home from work about 6:40 or so, changed my clothes, rested a few and we went out to dinner.  The "regular" places seemed too blah for date night, so we chose a little restaurant we had seen on Main Street.  It looks like an old rail dining car.  Once inside, the atmosphere was dreamy.  The maitre 'd seated us next to the fireplace - candles lit, not fire - and gave us menus.  Though it was tough, we made ourselves not look at the right side of the menu.  We ordered specialty ice tea, a crab dip appetizer (fabulous!) and dinner.  I had a peppered petit filet and he had steak and scampi.  I don't know when I've ever had a steak I could cut with a butter knife!  It was awesome.  They gave us Fiji bottled water instead of tap water.  There was soft, old-time music playing in the background.  To say it was a romantic place to have dinner is not saying enough.  Since we only get to do this once in a coon's age, we didn't mind the expense. 

It seems so odd that we should have a date night, but honestly, we didn't even get a honeymoon, so personal time is extra nice for us.  We started out with 13 kids, expanded to 30 and more and have only Andrea (whew!) now.  She's a special little girl and we love her.  We also value those few and far between times when we can act less like an old married couple and more like teenagers.

Those of you too young to understand - just wait - you'll get wrinkles someday, too.

Silly Survey

This borrowed from Patrick, who borrowed it from Christie (who I have never read, but think I will like), who borrowed it from someone else.  Busy Saturday, as you can tell:

1. Copy and Paste in your blog
2. BOLD anything true                                                                                             

3. Leave plain anything untrue

4. Add something true about yourself at the end

001.  I miss somebody right now.
002. I watch more tv than I used to.
003. I love olives.
004. I love sleeping.
005. I own lots of books.
006. I wear glasses.
007. I love to play video games  (yay Pogo)
008. I’ve tried marijuana.
009. I've watched porn movies.  (how many years ago??? - didn't like them.   
010. I have been in a threesome.
011. I have been the psycho-ex in a past relationship.
012. I believe honesty is the best policy.                                                              0
13. I couldn’t live without my cell phone.
014. I like and respect Al Sharpton.
015. I curse frequently.
016. I have changed a lot mentally over the last year.
017. I have a hobby. (duh- my 'puter)                                                                
018. I’m a perfectionist.
019. I carry my knife/razor everywhere with me.                                                      
020. I’ve never broken anyone else’s bones.                                                                                                     021. I’ve broken bones of my own.
022. I have a secret that I am ashamed to reveal.  (but don't tell)                       023. I love rain.
024. I’m paranoid at times.
025. I would get plastic surgery if it were 100% safe, free of cost, and scar-free.
026. I need money right now.
027. I love sushi. 
028. I talk really, really fast sometimes.
029. I have fresh breath in the morning.
030. I have semi-long hair.
031. I have lostmoney inLas Vegas.
032. I have at least one brother and/or sister.
033. I was born in a country outside of the U.S.
034. I shave my legs.  (once every 6 months)
035. I have a twin.                                                                                                
036. I talk a lot.                                                                                                     

037. I couldn’t survive without Caller I.D.

038. I have pictures of friends all over my room.
039. I have lied to a good friend in the past 6 months.
040. I know how to do cornrows. 
041. I am usually pessimistic.
042. I have mood swings.
043. I think prostitution should be legalized.
044. I think Britney Spears is pretty/hot.
045. I have cheated on a significant other.
046. I have a hidden talent.
047. I’m always hyper no matter how much sugar I have.
048. I think that I’m popular.                                                                                    
049. I am currently single. 

050. I have kissed someone of the same sex.  (DUH - I Have two daughters)                                                                                         
 051. I enjoy talking on the phone.
052. I practically live in sweatpants or PJ pants. (except when I'm at work)
053. I love to shop.
054. I would rather shop than eat.
055. I would classify myself as ghetto.
056. I am bourgie and have worn a sweater around my shoulders. (whats a bourgie???)
057. I’m obsessed with my LJ blog!
058. I don’t hate anyone. 

059. I would go out of my way to cause shit with someone I hate.
060. I don’t think Mike Tyson raped Desiree Washington…
061. I’m completely embarrassed to be seen with my mother. 
062. I have a cell phone.
063. I watch MTV on a daily basis.

064. I sleep more hours than I am awake.
065. I have passed out drunk in the past 6 months

066. I have lied to my parents in the last 2 weeks.

067. I have kissed someone and cringe every time I think about it.
068. I’ve rejected someone before.
069. I currently have a crush on someone. (my DH)

070. I have no idea what I want to do for the rest of my life.
071. I want to have children in the future

072. I have changed a nappy before.
073. I’ve had the cops called on me before.
074. I bite my nails.
075. I am a member of the Tom Green fan club.
076. I’m not allergic to anything deadly.
077. I have a lot to learn.
078. I have dated someone at least ten years younger or older. 

079. I have/had a best friend of the opposite sex.
080. I am very shy around the opposite sex.
081. I’m online 24/7, even as an away message.
082. I have at least 5 away messages saved.
083. I have tried alcohol before.
084. I have made a move on a friend’s significant other in the past.
085. I own the "SOUTH PARK" movie.  (we have one or two)
086. I have avoided assignments to be on Xanga or my blog.
087. When I was a kid I played "the birds and the bees" with a neighbor or chum.
088. I enjoy country music. (all kinds of music)

089. I love my best friend.
090. I think that Pizza Hut has the best pizza.
091. I watch soap operas whenever I can.

092. I watch cartoons and like them.
093. I have used my sexuality to advance my career.
094. I love Michael Jackson, scandals and all.
095. I know all the words to Slick Rick’s "Children’s Story".
096. Halloween is awesome because you get free candy.
097. I watch Spongebob Squarepants and I like it.
098. I have dated a close friend’s ex.
099. I am happy as of this moment.
100. I have gone scuba diving.
101. Had a crush on somebody you have never met.
102. I’ve kissed someone I knew I shouldn’t.
103. I play a musical instrument.
104. I strongly dislike math.
105.  I'm procrastinating on something right now.

106. I own and use a library card.     
107. I fall in lust more than love.
108. Cheese enchiladas rock my socks.
109. I think The Lord of the Rings is one of the greatest things ever.
110. I’m obsessed with the tv show "Lost."
111. I am resentful that I have to grow up.
112. I am an entirely different person around different people.
113. I think the world would be a better place if people just smiled more often.
114. I think ramen is the best kind of food in the whole world.
115. I am suffering from a broken heart.
116. I am a nerd. And proud of it!!
117. No matter where I am or who I’m with, I always seem to be lonely.

118. I am left handed and proud of it.
119. I don’t change who I am for someone else.
120. My heart resides below my feet.
121. I am a Senior in High School.
122. I enjoy smoothies.
123. I have gastritis.
124. I have nothing better to do with my time.
125. I am listening to Radiohead right now.
126.Most people call me by my middle name.
127. I once stole a music stand.
128. Pi confuses me.
129. I love NASCAR!
130. I own over 200 CDs.
131. I work 7 days a week. - this week, anyway
132. I have mono.

132. I don’t have the ability to make decisions without changing my mind.
133. People tell me I have a horrible sense of humor.
134. I'm wearing a bonds chesty.  (A what?)

135. I had more than one Thanksgiving dinner this year.
136. I’ve drove to a different state to see a band I like.
137. I am the most over analytical person I know.
138. I believe in wasting time.
139. I don’t listen to much music.
140.I have a shoe fetish.
141. My favorite holiday isn’t Christmas.
142. I prefer weeks off of school insteadof days here and there.
143. I like sex.
144. I wanna go home.
145. I don’t know what I would do without my friends.
146. Christmas threw up in my dorm room and I love it.
147. Friends is my favorite tv show.
148. I can touch my nose with my tounge.
149. On most days, I like my job.
150. I need a new piercing or tattoo.
<FONTSIZE=2>151. Been embarrassed by the number of people you’ve slept with.
152. I still use the phrase when I grow up.
153. I have a need to use phrases and words from the 80’s to "relive my youth."
154. I've given birth without painkillers of any sort.
155. I would do anything for my husband/wife.  
56. I go to the gun range to relieve frustration.
157. My name is Mindy, but I’ve never met Mork.
158. I want to get my drivers licence next year.
159. My passion is art.
160. 160 questions was a waste of my time.
161.  I unicycle.  (yeah, right)

162. I almost died when I was a few months old. 

163. I'm younger than I look!

Friday, July 29, 2005

The Friday Five

From Courage here are the Friday 5.  I really like reading Courage's journal.  Very insightful and fun at the same time. 

The Friday Five

1. What was your first job?

I got a job at a golf course coffee shop.  I was 16 years old and ready to make my way in the world.  It was a rough job for a little girl I was at the time - the men made some really awful comments.

2. How much did you make?

The minimum wage at the time was $1.25 an hour (don't say it - I know) - they made you report your tips and deducted that from your pay.

3. Describe your least favorite co-worker of all time.

I doubt she would recognize herself here, but just in case, I'll leave her name out.  She was our supervisor in the office - about 4' 10" tall and nearly as wide, though a snappy dresser.  She just never, ever shut up!  We couldn't get our work done.  Then she chastised us for not completing the days' work. 

4. What is your dream job?

I've had my dream job!  I spent 15 years in Mexico as a missionary.  It just can't get any better than that.

5. What do you currently do and do you like it?

I'm working in the ofice at a mini storage facility.  Strangely, the job suits me well.  It's not stressful, I can take and use my laptop when its not busy - they pay me for that!  It's the perfect job for a retired missionary.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Just Saying Hello to the UK

This is for my friend Sylvia.  And for Jeannette and Sandra and a few others.  It's already morning where you are anyway.  Lots of love to you all.



This 'n That

I've been trying all afternoon to get a name tag someone sent me into my journal.  I thought that I could use Photobucket to do it, but I guess I was wrong.  I didn't get anything figured out at all.  I just keep thinking I'm smart enough to handle graphics and the like, but continue to fail miserably.  Good thing I am persistent.  Also it's a good thing I'm not hanging my hopes on graphics. 

It's been sort of a quiet week.  I did some writing on Monday, but other than that and working, I've been a lump.  It's been warm enough that people aren't coming in to bother us at work, so I have tons of time to be online.  I'm grateful that my boss lets me bring the laptop with me.  I don't deal well with boredom. 

I'll be working a lot of hours this week because my co-worker is going on a fishing trip this weekend.  I normally don't work on Sundays, but she's giving me time off to take a trip north with Rob in a couple of weeks and I want to return the favor so she can go fishing.  I won't be worth much at home, but my paycheck will look nice. 

I'm hoping while I'm up north I'll get a chance to see my daughter as well.  Last time Heather and I were face to face was over 2 years ago.  I really miss seeing her and her kids.  We'll be a couple of hours from where she is, maybe we can meet half way or something.  Mostly, we will be visiting Rob's family in the Sacramento area.  His brother just moved their dad up there and dad is getting a little frail, so we want to visit when we can.  Rob spent many years not having a good relationship with his family and now that they are all on good terms, he wants to build up those precious memories.  I so understand.  We will never regret the time we take for them. 

Andrea is excited about the trip as well.  Her English is much better now and she's so much more confident than she was last year when we visited.  The plane tickets are in hand, everything is set but the packing (which I hate!)  I only care to take a couple of changes and my 'puter.  Gotta stay on top of things, ya know?

Monday, July 25, 2005

The Firestorm


I've been asked where my name, Firestormkids04 came from. What gave me the idea to call myself that? I've been a bit reticent to share, because, well, some of it hurts. I think I know you J-Landers well enough to begin to share the firestorm with you all.

As you know, I spent many years in Mexico as a missionary. It was and is the most rewarding work I've ever done. It never felt like a job. I always felt I was just “home.”

I was called out from my home. I wasn't sent by a church or missions group. My late husband and I retired to Mexico to live the sweet life while we were still young enough to enjoy it. We immediately got involved with the theater group there. We acted in several plays, even directed a few. It was a glorious and fun-filled time for us. We also met a group of Christians that held a Bible study every Tuesday. It wasn't church, but the closest thing to it. Elva was a wonderful teacher – 92 years young and she knew the Bible inside and out. Her son, Howard was part of the theater group. He and his wife invited us to come to the mission they had just a few miles away. I wasn't having any of it. I had my life in nice compartments: theater group, a small business venture, Bible Study, time alone with my husband. It's all I wanted. But June was insistent. Every time she saw me, she would ask again. She told me I would love it. I really didn't want to go. Finally one day I asked her if I went one time, would she then leave me alone? She said yes. I made an appointment and made the trip.

That trip changed my life forever. I went that day and didn't stop for 5 years. I joined the tiny staff at the clinic and felt I'd found my avocation. I loved helping these people and God had apparently given me a nearly instant ability to speak the language. As the clinic grew, I spent more and more time at the mission. Our business venture made us some money and went by the wayside. We just about stopped acting in the theater. My husband helped with building projects at the mission. We had a new direction.

The nurse who ran the clinic came some days and others she just didn't make it. They were expanding the clinic size and asked me to be their clinic manager. I wasn't a nurse, but with the help of the sometimes-present doctor and a book called Where the Is No Doctor,by the Hesperian Foundation, I made it through. This is where I experienced the first real trial. It seemed the nurse didn't want me running the clinic. She wanted to do. I was willing, but she hardly ever showed up and Howard wanted me to do it. I almost quit. I hate having people angry at me. She stirred up a lot of fuss. It was hard and I felt like I was being dragged through a furnace. Her words stung my heart. I thought this was what I was supposed to do for the Lord.

Eventually, the fire burned itself out and we got past the problem. She really didn't have time to come to the clinic all the time and realized that she had her own work to do. One of her ministry workers, however, didn't get over it and several months later, out of the blue, she reported the clinic to authorities for supposed “irregularities” It was a nightmare! The health department came in and gave the doctor we had hired a real rough time. We had to throw many needed medicines away because they weren't authorized for use. I held bitterness in my heart because I thought the nurse had sent her. The devil was trying to steal our joy.

As it turned out, the nurse knew nothing about it and was horrified to learn of the betrayal of the clinic. She came to ask forgiveness and we went forward again. We became friends. She began a ministry with handicapped children. I worked at the clinic and took in needy children. All seemed well with the world.

In 1997, I quit working at the clinic to stay at home with the 6 babies under 6 months old that I had in my care. The Lord had completed my clinic training for me and sent me home to do what He had planned for me in the first place. I am still surprised that this is what He chose for me to do. I didn't think I'd done all that great a job as a mom. I got chance after chance to make new mistakes and rectify old ones. God is truly good.

That year, my husband and mother died within 36 hours of each other and I contracted Hepatitis A. I sent all but 2 of the children home and stayed home to heal and grieve. I slept in the crook of Jesus' arms and cried to him of my loss. He sustained me with His word, telling me that He would never leave me nor forsake me. In a very short time, I had turned from yellow back to normal and I brought my 2 children home.

Then the firestorm blew again. My neighbors thought that surely after the death of my husband I would give up the silly notion of caring for Mexican children. They were so wrong. I wanted nothing more than to serve the Lord in this capacity. I dedicated the rest of my life to Him. They were furious. Missionaries had come to finish the house my husband and I had been building and we moved into it. I moved Mexican workers into the trailer I had lived in and brought more children home. They called the authorities. I received a notice to appear at the courthouse. From what I could understand, the notice said it was going to be like an arbitration to make our neighborhood more livable for all.

I fenced the area in front of my home so the children couldn't get out into the street – that was one of their complaints. So silly, there were only a fewpermanent residents in our “campo”. The rest were weekenders. I didn't totally understand. These people were my friends, or so I thought. The last conversation we had before the appearance date was another complaint and this statement: “And you claim to be Christian!” Her voice was so ugly and hateful.

I prayed a lot and especially hard the day I was to appear. I had offers from a couple of friends to go with me, but since it was to be an arbitration between myself and the neighbor, I declined and went alone. Big mistake! When I arrived, as many of the residents (regular and weekend) as she could muster were standing in the courtyard. I felt my stomach drop. I sat in a chair in the waiting area and bowed my head. I didn't pray for victory. I prayed that the Lord would help me to be a Christian throughout it all. I felt blindsided and He was the only one I could turn to. After a few minutes, I raised my head and saw the father of my oldest child (he had beaten her with electrical wire, opening wounds on her back and legs). Remembering my prayer, I spoke and asked him if he was well. He was there to handle the legal matters for his young daughter who had been hit by a car. He thanked me for asking and asked that I tell his daughter about her little sister.

When we got inside the meeting room, I was ready to be bombarded, but the officer of the court would allow only my next-door neighbor, her husband and their translator into the room. The rest had to wait outside. I remained silent as they voiced their complaints. I didn't even have to bite my lip. When asked a question, I answered truthfully and without extra words. It was hard for me. I was upset that this woman I had considered a friend was throwing vile insults and charges my way. It hurt deeply. Occasionally she would turn to look at me and her eyes would shoot daggers through me. The court officer asked me how I came about caring for the children and whether I was in the country legally. I showed her my documentation and told her that the home was privately run to benefit children in substandard situations. After further questioning, she went to speak to a judge and came back. She told my neighbors that their claims had no merit in Mexico. I could take in and care for as many children as I wanted as long as I didn't abuse them in any way.

I left elated. God had spoken for me. I didn't need to defend myself or the ministry. I just needed to go forward. I wish I could tell you that things got better then, but it was a long, long time of bitterness on their part. I stood on this scripture during that time: 1Peter 2:23 (my paraphrase) – for when they hurled their insults at him, he threw no insult back, neither did He threaten or judge, rather left the judgement to Him who judges justly. I had that scripture taped everywhere, knowing that if my Lord could keep silent, then I could too.

Eventually, the relationship was somewhat restored. We had an easy peace between us and life went on the best it could. I brought Americans in as volunteers to live in my old home and we tried to be the best neighbors we could be. It was never the same. My trust level was down. I trusted God to help me, but didn't fully trust my neighbor not to hurt me again.

I never knew when the Lord pressed me into His service that it would be so hard. Being with the kids wasn't hard, it felt natural. But the trials were there so often! I didn't know how much Satan hated the work of ministry. He used loved ones and strangers to attack again and again. There was another rift between myself and the nurse I had started ministry with so many years before. It was very personal and I won't go into it here, but it changed our relationship forever. I took a stand. I'm glad I did. I'd do it again.

Next came the loss of our beautiful home on the beach. We had been assured that we would be able to keep our homes, that the threatened eviction would not happen. As we watched military troops come into our area, we knew that it was all over. More than 300 people lost their homes that day. I will never forget. I have already forgiven. The children and I had to move on. Our pastor had a tiny house for us to use and we went there with gratitude.

While living with our pastor, I met Robert and fell in love and got married. It was wonderful. Together, we decided on a plot of land to buy for the ministry. The pastor helped us buy it. The land had to be in the name of a Mexican corporation or Mexican citizen. We could not own it outright.

We moved from the pastor's ranch to a rental house in town while we prepared the land for building. Groups from churches in many parts of the United States came to help clear, scrape, dig and build. Fourteen months after we moved off the ranch, the home was nearly completed and we moved in. It was very “rustic” at first, but we loved it. It was so peaceful. Our home was on a bluff, surrounded on all sides by agricultural land. We could see all the way to the ocean. It was a little island of God's love. Perfect place to minister to the children and for them to grow.

The biggest problem that Robert and I had was prejudice. Not his. Not mine. The prejudice of the Mexican people toward him. He is brown as they are, son of a Mexican man and Apache woman, born in the U.S. He is truly 100% American. The locals saw him as a threat. They thought he should think as they did. He couldn't anymore than most foreigners. Robert had been a soldier. He was loyal to the U.S.A. They wanted him to change. I'll say that so many years in Mexico had changed me. I had lived among the people for so long, that I was accustomed to their culture. I just went along with the flow, so to speak. It was a little harder for my precious man of God. For this he was despised. The locals wouldn't look him in the eye. Many came to talk to me instead. My Spanish was better than Rob's but my heart no different. He was hurt and we were once again in the middle of a firestorm.

This time, the fire was different. Rob had health issues and had to leave. The local pastor and church thought I would stay and run the ministry. Told me in fact, that I must do so. They told me my husband was no good for me.

I spent much time in prayer, lying on the floor in my closet, crying to the Lord. What should I do? My first responsibility, Lord is to you, then to family, then ministry and so on. HELP ME!! I was depressed. I was angry. It was hard for all of us. Andrea wanted her papa. The kids wanted papa. I wanted papa.

I went to church and again I heard a preaching about family and what should come first. My place was at my husband's side. He wasn't so ill that he couldn't care for himself, but his doctor didn't want him to return to Mexico. I needed to go to him. I started to make my plans, spoke with the local pastor and told him I would be looking for another couple to take our place as directors. In my prayer life, I felt that I should talk to our friends who had a daycare ministry. I prayed again and again and waited for confirmation. When I got it, I went to our friends and asked them if they would take over the ministry for us.

As it turned out, we combined the two ministries and it has been very good. The fire burned for a while. The pastor's plan had been to take over the ministry himself with me as director. He wanted the piece of land now that it had buildings and farm animals on it. He thought we were rich. We are. It's just that our riches are not silver or gold. Our riches lie in Christ Jesus and Him crucified. In his greed, the pastor and a couple of others broke the law and tried to take something that wasn't theirs to take. We are grateful to God that the ministry has survived yet another firestorm.

If you ever decide to serve the Lord, be ready for the storms. His fire is a refining fire which will make you stronger and burn away from you that which is not pleasing to Him. He will not leave you or forsake you. I know. I've been in the refining fire. I was never, am never, alone. It's my one guarantee.

Recall Notice

A friend forwarded this to me this morning.  Normally, I don't open e-mails that have been forwarded so many times, but I trust and love my friend.  Hopefully one day she will learn to cut and paste.  Anyway, enjoy!

Recall Notice

The Maker of all human beings, is recalling all units manufactured, regardless of make or year, due to a serious defect in the primary and central component of the heart.

This is due to a malfunction in the original prototype units code named Adam and Eve, resulting in the reproduction of the same defect in all subsequent units.

This defect has been technically termed, "Subsequential Internal Non-morality", or more commonly known as S.I.N., as it is primarily expressed.</ FONT>

Some other symptoms:

1. Loss of direction
2. Foul vocal emissions
3. Amnesia of origin
4. Lack of peace and joy
5. Selfish, or violent behavior
6. Depression or confusion in the mental component
7. Fearfulness
8. Idolatry
9. Rebellion

The Manufacturer, who is neither liable nor at fault for this defect, is providing factory authorized repair and service free of charge to correct this SIN defect.

The Repair Technician, J esus, has most generously offered to bear the entire burden of the staggering cost of these repairs. There is no additional fee required.

The number to call for repair in all areas is: P-R-A-Y-E-R. Once connected, please upload your burden of SIN through the REPENTANCE procedure. Next, download ATONEMENT from the Repair Technician, Jesus, into the heart component.

No matter how big or small the SIN defect is, Jesus will replace it with:

1. Love
2. Joy
3. Peace
4. Patience
5. Kindness
6. Goodnes s
7. Faithfulness
8. Gentleness
9. Self control

Please see the operating manual, the B.I.B.L.E. (Believers Instructions Before Leaving Earth), for further details on the use of these fixes.

WARNING: Continuing to operate the human being unit without correction voids any manufacturer warranties, exposing the unit to dangers and problems too numerous to list and will result in the human unit being permanently impounded. For free emergency service, call on JESUS.

DANGER: The human be ing units not responding to this recall action will have to be scrapped in the furnace. The SIN defect will not be permitted to enter Heaven so as to prevent contamination of that facility.

Thank you for your immediate attention.


Monday Morning Question

From my friend Krissy, I attempt to answer the Monday Morning Question:

If you had to pick something that has really enriched your life over the past year, what would you say it is?

Wow! There is a lot.  Let's start with the fact that the Lord placed His ample arms around me and held me through so many changes in a short period of time that I wouldn't have survived without His arms and armor - "Put on the whole armor of God . . .that you might be able to stand against the wiles of the evil one" (paraphrased - see Ephesians 6:10-18 for the whole text)

My faith in God has been put to the test and rather than punish my weakness, He has seen fit to offer me more faith through trial.  He is an awesome God.  He gave me Robert and Andrea to love as well.  Not only His spiritual presence always with me, but the physical, earthly manifestion of love that is family.  What more can a person ask? 

Be blessed this Monday, J-Land.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Personal Commitment

This morning, Andrea made public her commitment to Christ by being baptized.  This was a decision she made on her own without a push from us.  She came back from church camp changed in a visible way.  Her worship at church was deeper and her desire to know more of the Lord palpable.  She's been studying her Bible and writing scriptures to learn.  It's what we wanted for her, but we are thrilled that she is motivated to do it on her own as well.

There were tears of joy in our faces as we watched our daughter come up a new creation.  Her testimony and that of the 11 other young people who made this step of obedience is a testimony to the work the Lord is doing in the young people at our church.  We are so proud to be her parents. 

Before the young people were baptized, the pastor asked us to pray and to take time to remember our own baptism as well. In my hands I held a Bible that was presented to me just 4 days after my baptism in the ocean in Mexico.  I stepped into that cold March water a free woman and came up a new creation. 

That Andrea's relationship with the Lord is more profound is obvious.  It's her relationship with Him, not hers through us or through the leaders or pastors.  the change in her is palpable.  Her worship time is more personal. 

She's grown into Christ right before our very eyes.

Amen, Jesus, Amen.

Easy - Like Sunday Morning #16

From Pixiedustnme :

"Did you read the latest Harry Potter novel yet?  Have you read any of them?  Have you seen any of the movies?" 

I never have ready any of them.  I actually don't intend to.  I have a problem with witchcraft, spells, etc.  I wouldn't watch the movies either. 

There are so many good, quality books out there that I just don't think it's necessary for me to step beyond what I believe.  I used to love books like this . . .the more strange things, the better.  The writers always had  tremendous imaginations.  As I read, I walked farther and farther away from God.

I worry about opening the door to these beliefs in my daughter.  Witchcraft isn't cute, it's dangerous.  I want her looking to God for her answers.  She's at an impressionable age.  There's other stuff we don't get into as well. We don't watch violent movies or those with plenty of sex or foul language.  Real life has enough of this.  I know it seems boring not to do so, but we're not bored at all.

My personal last good book to read?  Other than the Bible? I read a series of books about two young girls in the south after the end of the civil war.  Then I read the Orphan Train series - very predictable books, but basically good stories. 

Okay guys - there you have it.  Harry Potter isn't allowed reading in our house.  You are welcome to comment, but remember this - I didn't tell you that YOU couldn't read and enjoy.  Most of you are old enough to make up your own mind about this sort of stuff and wouldn't want me interfering anyway.

Blessings to all, I'm off to see Andrea get baptized this morning. 


Friday, July 22, 2005

Friday Five

Okay here I go.  This comes from Courage .

1. Who was your first best friend?

Becky Furman (I suppose that's not her name anymore).  she and her family moved in next door and we were inseparable.  They came from Ohio and I had no idea there was such a place.  Becky was cute and blonde and just a little chubby.  I was gawky and skinny, kind of a tomboy.  We have Bible studies and devotions at her house.  When I was 13, I went with her family to Billy Graham and received my personal salvation.  I miss her and wonder how she is now.

2. Who have been some of the most influential people in your life

My mom.  Definitely my mom.  She taught me about God and unconditional love.  There are others, I am sure.  There were teachers who helped me become who I needed to be, and pastors who were there to guide as well.  Our Pastor Reed is one of those people.  He always know how to handle a situation with peace.

3. Do you usually have one best friend or a lot of close friends?

I have a few of very close friends, like to think that they feel that way about me.  I have one friend who has stood the test of time with me and loves me anyway.  I don't do well in groups.

4. Do you believe people of the opposite sex can be best friends and not lovers?

For the most part, yes I do.  I think it depends on the maturity of the people involved.  I don't mean years, but wisdom.  In high school, I had two best friends - they were both guys.  One one point or another we had crushes on each other.  Gratefully, that didn't wreck our friendship.

5. Have you ever fallen in love with a friend?

More than once.  I married one of my friends and it was a disaster for us both.  I'm married to my best friend right now.  I think it helps to develop a friendship.  It has for Rob and me.  If we hadn't been friends, our love wouldn't have helped us over the rocky first year of marriage.  Of course, it helps when your friend and you also agree about the Lord.  That is the glue that cements us together. 

Blessings,  Penny

Next time I brag . . .kick me

I was bragging yesterday to Lisa how pleasant it was here where we are.  Not so very hot, a pleasant 80 degrees and probably 75 in Ventura.  That's what I get for spouting off at the mouth. 

I don't know what the actual temperature here is, but it's hot!!!  It's muggy, too and the usual breeze we have . . .gone.  I'm paying.  I'm really paying.  Not going to brag again - at least not anytime soon.

I don't do to well in the heat.  My feet swell up, I feel sluggish and just a little bit cranky.  I suppose a lot of people feel that way/  Sad thing is, when I feel like this, I'm not thinking of anyone but me.  PLOM (poor little old me).

Work isn't bad.  No one is coming in.  They don't want to go out in this heat.  Who wants to go inside a storage shed when the pavement is melting?  They aren't even coming in to pay their bills.  They are calling and using their debit cards. Makes it a bit boring, but I'm so lucky to have a job where I can use my laptop and write or play Pogo. 

I'm off tomorrow.  No plans.  Been sitting here trying to think up a new ice cream flavor for John's weekend assignment.  Too sluggish to think.  Rob wants to go buy stuff for his fish tank.  I'm only going if the store is air conditioned and he promises we can stay for at least a 1/2 hour.

Maybe I'll go look up the Friday Five and try them.  Forgot his name.  Gotta look through my alerts.  Exciting day.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Anniversary Time

Andrea came to work with me today.  Her daddy had an appointment somewhere in Los Angeles and had to leave at oh-dark-thirty to make it.  She likes to come with me.  She thinks it's cool to sit at a desk and pretend she has a job too.  I guess I kind of tricked her today, though.  I brought school work for her to work on.  She didn't like it at first, but since I was right next to her, she could ask question after question and it was okay.  She did some of her best work.

On the way to work every day, I sing praise songs and I pray.  It's no different when I have Andrea along.  She joins me in the songs and we even sing a few of our favorite Spanish songs while we are at it.  We had just finished a medley and a thought crossed my mind.  "Do you know what day it is today, Andrea?"

"No, mom." 

"This is the day . ." I didn't finish the sentence, because we began to sing that song, too.  It's a pretty joyful song and when we finished, we were both smiling.  Then I looked at her again and started over.  "It was one year ago today that you came to live in the United States."

She grinned at me.  She's been working on becoming fully American since that day.  She's succeeding!  It seems such a few days ago that I brought her to her daddy to stay with him while I finished up at the ministry in Mexico.  She was so excited to go with him.

I cried all the way back to the ministry.  I wanted her to stay with him.  I needed for her to be here so I could get that stuff done.  There was so much to do.  I felt alone.  I walked back into a house with 27 kids, 5 adults and myriad animals and I felt alone.  For six weeks since Rob had come to the US to get ready for us, Andrea and I had slept in the same bed as we had done when she was small.  I missed her presence there.  Not even Angel, who tried to fill Andrea's shoes could fill up the hole inside that I felt without Rob and Andrea. 

Remembering it this morning brought tears to my eyes.  I didn't let Andrea see them.  I am so grateful to have such a wonderful family.  I hope the next time I am tempted to yell at one of them I remember this again.  God really blessed our lives when he knit us together. 

Why I Keep a Journal

I'm going to try this for Judith's Artsy Essay contest. 


I started this AOL journey last September.  I got a free trial of AOL and decided to make the best of it.  My son John has a journal here.  I would like to think he got his talent from me. 

Keeping a journal is my way of sharing my thoughts and ideas with myself.  You can come along for the ride.  I actually love it when someone makes a comment, but it's really all for me.  I think of it as a leisurely stretch, sort of like a cat; legs in front, back arched, eyes closed in some unknown delight and a soft purr in my throat.  Often the words come before I have a chance really to think them out.  That's journalling.

There's so much I want to put in words so that I won't forget.  It seems the older I get, the more often my thoughts fade away.  I'll find myself grabbing a paper if the computer isn't right with me. I'm not too fond of paper.  I've been typing since I was four years old and writing stories and poetry since nearly that time.  Oh!  How my mind wanders!  There are poems in my head.  The story of my life.  I want to pass it on to my kids and grandkids to do with as they will.  In the meantime, maybe I'll have some fun sharing with others as well.

I have the feeling that my journal actually keeps me.  It keeps me sane.  It keeps me current.  Mostly, it keeps me at peace with myself.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Dufus and the Towel Rack

I've really done it now.  I've totally scared and ticked off Rob and Andrea.  It happened this way.

You all know I'm at jury duty.  Been here all day.  Got chosen twice and excused twice.  I've been happily playing on the internet in the interim, so it's not been at all bad. I've had a conversation with my friend Sylvia and a few chats with my Rob.  Its this last one that had me kind of flustered.

We were talking away when I remembered I hadn't fed the dog.  I asked Rob if anyone had done it.  He said he had and that Andrea would feed him this afternoon.  Then he asked me if I had read about the bird in our last chat.  I'd had to log off and run.  I didn't read it and then I got a kind of a hole in the pit of my stomach. 

Here's the gist of it:  I left Dufus on the shelf in the bathroom while I brushed my teeth.  Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him start to climb the towel rack on the door.  I forgot him.  Later, Rob and Andrea couldn't find him.  Thought the dog ate him.  Didn't know how to tell me.  Then Andrea (remember Dufus hates her? ) had to go to the bathroom.  Dufus attacked her!  Scared the pee-wa-diddly right out of her.  She wasn't hurt.  I'm falling all over myself laughing!

I know . . .I'm bad.

This is me.  On jury duty - so cool.  I am logged in to the net right from the courthouse.  Been called once, excused and may be called again.  Will post more later.  It's only 10:30 in the morning and they are calling left and right. 

Well, at least I didn't get called this time.  The other trial that I was excused from was going to last 3 weeks.  I told them I wouldn't be paid for that time and they let me go, but I still have to be around the whole day while they are culling jurors for trials.  Part of me wants to actually be on a jury.  I think it would be interesting - the other part wants to get this over with so I can get back to my life.

I wonder why we think that serving on a jury is now such a burden instead of a privilege.  I surely wouldn't want to be on the other side of the process.  Our lives are so full that even the one day a year that my county requires seems to be such a hardship.  Where did that come from?  What's happened to civic duty?  I'm proud to be called to serve, even if it's just to sit here all day an be available.  Truth is, if I were on trial, I'd like someone like me to be calling the shots. 

Yes, it takes away from my life for a day (but not too much, I have my 'puter).  Yes, I could think of something I would enjoy more.  There are other nerds here, too.  Lost in their laptops, their work, their games, etc.  Like me, they don't seem as upset about the process as those who forgot to bring a book or something to do. 

I'm doin' my civic duty (read that privilege) and I'm having a pretty good time doing it so far.  Have a good day, folks.  I may stop in later if there's anything of interest to tell.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Plugging my hubby into the future . . .

It came today.  Rob's very own computer! I made him unpack it, plug stuff in and set it up.  It took forever - I probably could have set in up in 10 minutes.  But that wasn't the point.  More and more Rob has been asking me to look things up for him, usually followed by the statement, "If I knew how to work the computer, I would do it myself."  He had his first real lesson today.  Soon enough I'll have him journalling along with the rest of us.  One thing at a time, however.  He's learned to type in his name, get his AOL going and send an instant message.  Next he's going to have a few lessons on navigating the internet.  His new machine is as fast as my laptop.  Makes my other computer seem slow by comparison, and it's a great 'puter. 

Wierd thing, though.  This laptop has given me a sense of true freedom.  I can take it just about anywhere.  Wireless connections are in so many places.  I guess I am what you would call a severely addicted 'puter junkie.  It's one addiction I don't want to cure soon - or ever.  If I can get Rob addicted, then maybe he won't bug me so much.  Ya think?

For all who are wondering, the county gave me the day off jury duty to go have the medical tests.  However, I have to report tomorrow.  It's okay though.  This morning I saw a bunch of nerds just like me toting their laptops to the desks in back where there is a connection for electricity and a way to connect to the internet.  It won't be all bad - and maybe I'll get a chance to see first hand how our legal system works.

I won't have results of the test until next week.  Please pray that it's just my fibromyalgia driving me crazy and there's nothing else wrong.  I hate this pain, but can live with it if I have to.  Rather that than a trip to the hospital. 

Another milestone at our house today.  Andrea and her friend went shopping at the 99 cent store - we dropped them off.  Andrea said she would never ride a bus, but she and Amanda did just thaqt.  Spent their money, had a good time and came home by themselves on the bus.  Cool!  Scary! 

Peace, y'all.  I'm outta here.

Jury Duty

I have been called for jury duty and today is the day.  This is also the day that the doctor scheduled the ultrasound of my kidney.  I have to go in to see which one will win out.  I have the order slip for the ultrasound and the paper ordering me to appear.  If they want me to stay, I'll have to reshcedule the ultrasound.  I don't really want to do that because I've been having a tremendous amount of pain.  I wonder what will happen.

I really want to serve on jury duty.  In all my 56 years, I have never been in a place where I could do it.  I think it will be interesting.  Rob said it was boring, but I found out yesterday that I could take my laptop.  I guess most of the people don't even get chosen for a jury and after their one day of sitting around the courthouse, they are done for a year.  Either way, I'm ready to go. 

Of course, getting up early in the morning like this is definitely not my forte.  I like to sleep until about 7:30 and grumble for a while before I have to actually be human. I always think that just another five minutes will make the difference for me.  Probably not.  Like my dog, I guess I'm just a natural couch potato.

Monday, July 18, 2005

A Penny

I woke up in a bad mood.  I was grouchy.  I snapped at Rob.  I grumbled at the dog, felt like sqwauking at the bird.  Came to work.  Went to the bank and post office.  Got my 'puter out of its case and hooked it up.  Still grouchy.  Then I got this in my mailbox:

 The Penny

Remember this every time you pass that little penny

in the parking lot.

I always thought that it was for Good Luck,

but I love this version better:

I found a penny today

Just laying on the ground.

But it's notjust a penny,

this little coin I've found.

Found pennies come from heaven,

That's what my Grandpa told me.

He said Angels toss them down.

Oh, how I loved that story.

He said when an Angel misses you,

They toss a penny down.

Sometimes just to cheer you up,

To make a smile out of your frown.

So, don't pass by that penny,

When you're feeling blue. It may be a penny from


that an Angel's tossed to you.

So now pass this on to the people who you care


and who you feel are Angels to you,

I just did.

An Angel is now watching over you.

       Have  A  Great  Day!

I needed this.  Now I feel guilty.  Gonna have to ask forgiveness for being a grouch (you can spell that how you like - I'm a Christian woman and therefore can't use the other words) 

Have a blessed day, my friends.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

8th Grade Education-1895 style

 A friend sent this to me in an e-mail.  I've stolen it and reprinted it here for you all.

This says it all....

Remember when grandparents and great-grandparents stated that they only had an 8th grade education? Well, check this out. Could any of us have passed the 8th grade in 1895? This is the eighth-grade final exam from 1895 in Salina, Kansas, USA. It was taken from the original document on file at the Smokey Valley Genealogical Society and Library in Salina, KS, and reprinted by the Salina Journal.

8th Grade Final Exam: Salina, KS -1895 Grammar (Time, one hour)

1. Give nine rules for the use of capital letters.
2. Name the parts of speech and define those that have no modifications.
3. Define verse, stanza and paragraph.
4. What are the principal parts of a verb? Give principal parts of"lie," "play," and "run."
5. Define case; Illustrate each case.
6. What is punctuation? Give rules for principal marks of punctuation.
7 - 10. Write a composition of about 150 words and show therein that you understand the practical use of the rules of grammar.

Arithmetic (Time, 1.25 hours)

1. Name and define the Fundamental Rules of Arithmetic.
2. A wagon box is 2 ft. deep, 10 feet long, and 3 ft. wide. How many bushels of wheat will it hold?
3. If a load of wheat weighs 3942 lbs., what is it worth at 50cts/bushel, deducting 1050 lbs. for tare?
4. District No. 33 has a valuation of $35,000. What is the necessary levy to carry on a school seven months at $50 per month, and have $104 for incidentals?
5. Find the cost of 6720 lbs. coal at $6.00 per ton.
6. Find the interest of $512.60 for 8 months and 18 days at 7 percent.
7.What is the cost of 40 boards 12 inches wide and 16 ft. long at $20 per metre?
8. Find bank discount on $300 for 90 days (no grace) at 10 percent.
9. What is the cost of a square farm at $15 per acre, the distance of which is 640 rods?
10. Write a Bank Check, a Promissory Note, and a Receipt.

U.S. History (Time, 45 minutes)

1. Give the epochs into which U.S. History is divided.
2. Give an account of the discovery of America by Columbus.
3. Relate the causes and results of the Revolutionary War.
4. Show the territorial growth of the United States.
5. Tell what you can of the history of Kansas.
6. Describe three of the most prominent battles of the Rebellion.
7. Who were the following: Morse, Whitney, Fulton, Bell, Lincoln, Penn, and Howe?
8. Name events connected with the following dates: 1607, 1620, 1800, 1849, 1865 .

Orthography (Time, one hour) Do we even know what this is??

1. What is meant by the following: Alphabet, phonetic, orthography, etymology, syllabication?
2. What are elementary sounds? How classified?
3. What are the following, and give examples of each: Trigraph, subvocals, diphthong, cognate letters, linguals
4. Give four substitutes for caret 'u.' (HUH?)
5. Give two rules for spelling words with final 'e.' Name two exceptions under each rule.
6. Give two uses of silent letters in spelling. Illustrate each.
7. Define the following prefixes and use in connection with a word: bi, dis, mis, pre, semi, post, non, inter, mono, sup.
8. Mark diacritically and divide into syllables the following, and name the sign that indicates the sound: card, ball, mercy, sir, odd, cell, rise, blood, fare, last.
9. Use the following correctly in sentences: cite, site, sight, fane, fain, feign, vane, vain, vein, raze, raise, rays.
10. Write 10 words frequently mispronounced and indicate pronunciation by use of diacritical marks and by syllabication.

Geography (Time, one hour)

1. What is climate? Upon what does climate depend?
2. How do you account for the extremes of climate in Kansas?
3. Of what use are rivers? Of what use is the ocean?
4. Describe the mountains of North America.
5. Name and describe the following: Monrovia, Odessa, Denver, Manitoba, Hecla, Yukon, St. Helena, Juan Fernandez, Aspinwall and Orinoco.
6. Name and locate the principal trade centers of the U.S.
7. Name all the republics of Europe and give the capital of each.
8. Why is the Atlantic Coast colder than the Pacific in the same latitude?
9. Describe the process by which the water of the ocean returns to the sources of rivers.
10. Describe the movements of the earth. Give the inclination of the earth.

Notice that the exam took FIVE HOURS to complete. Gives the saying "he only had an 8th grade education" a whole new meaning, doesn't it?! Also shows you how poor our education system has become... and, NO! I don't have the answers. If I had to do this exam, I would STILL be in the eighth grade!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunny Sunday

I honestly don't know where to start.  There's so much to tell.  You know Sammy came to be with us on Friday, right?  Majorly cool.  Also, Andrea came home from camp on Friday.  We sure missed her.  When she slows down, I'm taking pictures.  She came back so DARK!  Her eyes, skin and hair just about match.

She had a great time at camp.  At first, she wasn't talking.  She was just kind of hanging around.  Robert thought she was upset.  I thought maybe she hadn't slept for a few days.  I was right.  Moms know these things.  But she also looked like she needed to talk a bit, so we went to my room and curled up on the bed to chat.  Sammy though t he should curl up, too and we watched a 70-pound, uncoordinated pooch try to climb up and circle himself until he could lie down.  He's pretty tall, so we were cracking up by the time he settled down. 

Andrea then told me that camp was awesome.  All the kids got along great and they got to swim, kayak, play and pray.  During worship one night, most of the kids were moved to tears by the spirit.  Andrea said the tears were almost overpowering for them.  Eleven of the kids decided to be baptized the next day.  They, plus a few more will be baptized again in the church next week.  We could see the change in a few of the kids today at church.  Andrea was more "into" the service and her friend Amanda, who is so timid a feather would startle her, was more open.  All of the kids seemed closer to each other, the counselors and most especially, to the Lord.

Yesterday afternoon we found out just how fast our greyhound can be!  I got home from work a little tired and Rob stepped out the gate with the bird to greet me.  He didn't close the gate and Sammy slipped out behind him.  Before I could yell at Rob to grab him, he was off like a shot!  He disappeared down the street and I drove off after him.  Rob got in the other car and Andrea walked down to the bike trail.  I looked and looked, but it seemed the dog had gone into thin air. I was in tears. I was angry.  I didn't know what I was.  I parked the car and went through a factory parking lot to another section of the bike trail.  I walked back nearly to our house and shouted Sammy's name.  I nice lady named Jan came out with her dog to help me look.  I hollered at two menchatting by a truck and asked if they'd seen a dog. "A yellow greyhound?  The little girl just took him with her."  I nearly fell apart.  Now all I had to do was walk all the way back to my car and go home.  My emotions were diffused, but I wanted to blame someone.  I prayed to God to help me keep my thoughts to myself.  I hate apologizing for being a butt.  Anyway, Sammy's home, we are wiser and all of us are safe.

Somewhere between Friday and this afternoon, Dufus and Sammy have reached an easy peace.  Dufus is no longer shouting alarm calls everytime Sammy passes his cage and Sammy is no longer trying to lick or taste Dufus every time he calls out.  The seem to be ignoring each other and trying to vie for our individual attention.

We became members of our church this morning.  We miss our old church, but all of us have found new church homes now and this was the next logical step since we love this congregation.  Andrea wouldn't go anyplace else.  After church there was a pot luck and a few of the kids have gone to the movies together.  We dropped Amanda and Andrea off after a quick change of clothes.  We also put both Sammy and Dufus in the car for a trip to the pet store.  I don't know how Sammy did in the rescue lady's van, but he just flat doesn't know how to ride in a regular car.  He thinks he's a lap dog and tried to climb in my lap in the back seat.  He wasn't all that sure he wanted to get in in the first place and then kept his front feet on the seat and wasn't quite sure what to do with his back legs.  Dufus kept looking at me as if to say "Tell me again why you brought him?"  Sammy's legs would shake at every turn.  Poor dog, he didn't know what to do with himself.  I tried not to laugh, but couldn't help myself.  I was worried he might hurt himself.  At one point, he tried turning around and while making the turn, Rob slowed down and Sammy's tail hit me in the face and knocked poor Dufus off my shoulder.  If you have ever heard a Sun Conure screech when angry, you can imagine how it felt in an enclosed space. 

We had a good time at the pet store, got good discounts for our stuff because we adopted Sammy and had to tell where Sammy "christened" the store.  The car ride must have loosened his bladder :)  Dufus got to meet another Sun Conure (her name was Dawn) and looked like he wanted us to take her home.  Like we could afford the $600 price tag!  Sammy met a Boxer pup who barked at him, a Great Pyrenees who sniffed him and made friends and a couple of Labradors.  There was a Silky Terrier puppy, but the couple took one look at the big dogs and rushed off.  A black Chihauhua tried to join in, but his owner kept his lead short. 

We were all glad to get back home.  Dufus, Sammy and Rob are napping and I am sitting in the recliner with my laptop.  I don't care if I ever move again.  I may take a nap, too.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Saturday Six

1. What is the last thing you either camped out or got up unusually early to be able to buy?  I'd have to say it was tickets to the Bolshoi (circa 1987)

2. If you had to give up one of the following for a full year, which would be the easiest to do without?  Which would be the most difficult to give up?
    a) Your personal vehicle
    b) Your Telephone (both cellular and land line)
    c) The Internet
    d) Meat (all of it:  Beef, Poultry, Pork and Seafood)
    e) Television
Wow, tough choices!  I guess I would have to give up meat! The hardest for me to give up would be the Internet.  I'm addicted.

3. How many items (include all bottles, boxes and containers) are in your medicine cabinet?  Which is the last one you used?  There are 7 - last used - toothpaste

4. What is the first source you go to for news of any kind when you wake up?  How much do you trust that particular source?  We go to channel 5 news - we trust it for the most part - I personally prefer the internet.

5. Take the Quiz:  
What do the letters of your name stand for?  P erverse,  E ccentric,  N atural,  N ice,  Young

6. What is your favorite color and why?  If you have a journal or journals, is this color the primary one on those journals?  If not, why not?  Currently, red is my favorite color - just seems to suit me - yes I use this color on my journals.

Sammy's Got HIS home!

Sammy moved into our home this morning before I left for work.  I was a bit sad because I wouldn't be there to spend his first day with him.  He is such a sweet dog and I just wanted to lie on the floor and cuddle with him. 

We got an adoption packet from Homestretch Greyhound Rescue & Adoption that included all the pertinent facts about Sammy:  hes 4 1/2 years old, born 4/15/2001, his racetrack name was Still Waters (isn't that cool?), and they note that he is gentle, affectionate, playful, sensitive and a lap dog.  He's been sterilized and has all his shots.  We also got information on Greyhounds, a magazine about them, a discount at a pet store and other cool information.  The note on house broken said "in progress", but Rob called me earlier and said that Sammy was laying near the hearth, got up walked outside and did his business.  Good DOG!  We have a winner here.

When Andrea gets home tonite, she will be thrilled.  She wanted him so badly.  She was disappointed when the Pomeranians didn't pan out, but I think God had a better idea, don't you?

I've been writing in my other journal this afternoon.  Sometimes its hard for me to do that.  The memories are so poignant that I find myself tearing up as I write.  I can see myself then, and my kids.  How has so much time passed and the feelings and memories are so fresh?  At first I thought I would post at least once a week to it, but now I see that the time just has to be right.  Maybe it's a God thing.  Who knows? 

I hope you all have a great weekend.  I'm working tomorrow, but am looking forward to a good weekend anyway. 

Blessings, Penny

Friday Five

Okay, guys, I don't know who started it or who to give credit to, but here are the questions and my answers:

1. If you only had to choose one, does righteousness fall more under giving pennies to the poor, or asking a rich man to come into your humble apartment (if you had one, of course)?    

I started to say I'd give the pennies, but I guess I'd choose to go to the person who needs Jesus, those that already have him will receive anyway.

2. Does adaptation to one's surroundings take place through one's actions or one's thoughts?  

By our actions.  I had to put one foot in front of the other to adjust to living back in the USA after 15 years in Mexico - my thoughts would not have done.

3. If you were to find the meaning of life how would you use it?  

I think I know the meaning of life, actually, although you and I would probably differ:  "Love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind and strength and love your neighbor as yourself." paraphrased from Matt 22:37-40 

4. Let's say you managed to find, through science, that the human brain had no freewill, and was controlled by a series of chemical reactions rather than a consciousness. Would you continue to search for answers?  

Yes I would.  And if I could search for answers, then I'd know I had free will.

5. You find a fossil of a bird buried in the ground by chance as you are digging in your garden. It is so well-preserved that one could see the actual feathers and make out almost every bone. Your young (maybe four-five year old) children come running over to see what you have found, and you decide to bury it back into the ground to keep it safe from them lest they break it. Later on that day, you come to dig it back up to show to your wife, but find that you have misplaced it. After admitting to your wife that you have misplaced the fossil, to the damage of your credibility, you contemplate whether you should have donated the fossil to a museumor kept it on display in your house. Which one would you choose and why, taking the situation into context?    

Well, I certainly would have given to a museum for all to enjoy, although I'm sure I would have loved having it to myself.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Weekend Assignment #68

So, my son John, at By the Way asked us to help celebrate Bastille Day by noting a contribution the French have made that impresses us.  He picked the Statue of Liberty.  Great gift from them.  She graces the entrance to New York with such dignity.  I still remember some f the French I learned as a kid, but now only a few useless phrases come to mind.  There's a fabulaous French restaurant in Ensenada where I have dined.  The food was great, pastries divine . . .Mexican waiters kinda wrecked the "French" atmosphere.  And I love those wonderful old movies with the French woman dancing the Can-Can (scandalous at the time!)  But most of all, I want to than the French for .  .  .  .  .




oo-la-la!!!!   the FRENCH KISS!!!  oh yeah, love that French kiss,  Did they actually think it up?  Who cares?

Before I was ever French-kissed (no, I'm not telling who or when, but remember I had a son when I was 16), the prospect seemed totally gross.  EEEEEWWWW!  Germs!  Then, HE leaned over, took my little face in his hands and laid one on me.  I was done for.  Still am.  When Rob inclines his head to mine and profers his lips, I'm there. 

I want you to know I'm not a sex-maniac or anything like that.  I like to think of myself as a romantic.  They say the true romance was born in France.  Since I'm a bit French in the mix, I must have gotten some of those wonderful tendencies. 

Sorry, son, if this is grossing you out, but us old folks need love, too!

No extra credit for me either.  Never been across the Atlantic.  Maybe someday . . .




Thursday afternoon

Well, Here it is sort of "hump" day for me . . .I have to work Saturday as well this week.  Work has been very slow today and I've just been catching up on some things that we put off until a day such as this.  I was going to hook up Elaine's DSL, but we found she doesn't have an ethernet connection on her computer.  Her son has an extra, so I'll do it tomorrow.

I thought I'd play Pogo for a while, but just haven't been in the mood for it.  My back has been hurting for a while.  When I went to the doctor a couple of weeks ago, they did bloodwork and some of it was irregular, leading them to believe I might have a kidney function problem.  They had me double my water intake and redo the test.  It came back better, but my back is no better.  So back to the doctor this morning before work.  She thinks I might have kidney stones.  I'm scheduled for an ultra-sound on Tuesday.  Personally, I'd rather it were muscle spasms.  She thinks its unrelated to my fibromyalgia and too far from the spine to be osteoporosis or arthritis.  It could be a whole lot worse.  And honestly, I hate complaining when my life is so good otherwise.  You know?  I'm truly blessed.  We have a good marriage, a beautiful daughter, a cool bird and a nifty dog is moving in tomorrow.  Our little house is just right for us and we are happy.  God has poured out His love on us and these petty little bothers seem inconsequential in light of His power.

Andrea has been at church camp since 4 am monday morning - the first time in her young life that she's been out of our care and control for more than a day.  It's really strange!  The first night, Rob and I were thrilled.  "Privacy!!!" We deserve some time alone.  Monday night was enough.  She may be a pain sometimes, but we miss her!  By last night it just didn't seem right.  We went out for Chinese (one of her favorites) and came home and, well, just looked at each other. Our lives are truly intertwined with that little girl.  She's going to miss Sammy's arrival tomorrow morning.  She won't be home until sometime tomorrow evening. (insert big, globby tears here).  By Saturday afternoon, we'll probably wish she'd stayed!  Some people are just never satisfied.

Oh well, that how it is.  And you know, it's a good life.