Friday, July 24, 2009


My Mom has had cancer twice in the past year. In November, she had breast cancer and had a masectomy and in June she had colon cancer and had a foot of her colon removed. I was wondering what all the "ribbon colors" meant so I googled "cancer colors and meanings". I already knew that a pink ribbon is the color for breast cancer.

I found out that either a blue or brown ribbon can stand for colon cancer, while a lavendar ribbon signifies all cancers.

Mom just found out from a recent PET scan that she doesn't have any more cancer in her body. She was amazed, because I think she had been preparing herself for the worst. I think we all do that. In fact I think that is exactly what we all have been doing. When she found out that there was no more cancer, she kept wondering why she was so blessed? Whaever the reason, I'm glad and profoundly thankful. I'm just not ready to lose my mom quite yet.

Like my new blog quote says: "Do not believe in miracles. Rely on them."

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


The day I went to see Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince I also bought the soundtrack on CD. I really like it, it is one of my favorites. I have all of the soundtracks on CD except Prisoner of Azkaban. For some reason, everytime I go to look for it, they don't have it. One of these days I'll find it....


My husband is a "do-it-your-selfer". He loves tinkering around and building stuff and fixing stuff. Since we have been in Ireland he has really missed his shop and getting to do stuff like that.

Well he has a new project here. Since he has been doing some fly-fishing, he brings his waders home and cleans them off in the shower and hangs them up. This is no problem since he had a bathroom with a shower in his office and he uses that. Obviously that wasn't good enough, because now he is building some kind of boot stand for his waders. He brought his tool box with some of his tools over here so he has a few, but the other night we had to go to the "B & Q" to get some glue, a chisel and some clamps. When he was sawing wood - IN MY KITHEN!- he said he needed a vice. I said, "And just where do you think you are going to put that vice, because I promise you it is not going on my table nor my granite countertops!" He just laughed. The other night he bought some clamps. I said, "I hope you're not thinking of clamping those to anything in my kitchen or house." He assured me that he was only going to use them to clamp the project together while the glue dried. I know better though, because I know he WANTED to clamp it to something. I saw that gleam in his eye! I did find out that his "sweeping" wasn't enough to get the sawdust off of the floor. The next morning, after repeatedly sneezing my head off, I finally realized it was from left-over traces of sawdust. After I got the vacumn out and vacumned the kitchen floor, I stopped sneezing.

Meanwhile, he's happy as a clam working on this project. Question: Just why ARE clams happy?

Monday, July 20, 2009


Amber and Delirious have been talking about their bedrooms, so I decided to join in the fun.

In the Omaha house, I have a very early memory of having the bedroom that later on belonged to my two brothers. I can't remember who I shared that room with - not sure if it was Twist or Inklings. I do remember we had the bunkbeds in there. We also had Inkling's bookshelf. I don't know if it was hers or became hers later. We didn't have any books in it, but it was the greatest Barbie house I ever had. It was a big deep bookcase with 2 shelves. I thought it was the coolest 2-story Barbie house. Of course we used the top of the bookcase (it was a long, wide, low bookcase) for the Barbies' rooftop patio. This bookcase was big enough to accomodate the Barbie canopy beds we made out of shoeboxes, with peg clothespins to hold up the half of an Oatmeal box that we used as the canopy - covered in fabric, of course. I think those beds were about the only real constructed furniture we had, and the rest was just whatever item, box, bottle, etc we could find around the house to assume the identity of the item of furniture we needed. From this bedroom, you could open the window, take out the screen and get on the slanted part of the roof and walk up to the flat top roof. Just don't let Mom catch you doing it. :0)

The next bedroom I remember having was when I shared the Master Bedroom suite with my sister. It was really like 2 rooms in one, and was actually a master bedroom with a nursery. To get to my room you had to go through hers, but there was no door or wall between her room and mine. I had a small closet in my room, but she got to use the coveted Cedar Closet, which was just outside her bedroom door. You could actually go into the closet and get dressed, because it was really like a tiny room - cedar lined. It smelled so good in there. Half the room had a closet rod on it with Mom and Dad's old or out of season clothes. The other half of the closet was my sister's. I inherited my Grandmother (dad's mom) chest of drawers, and vanity table and bench. My bedspread (handmade by Mom) was white with red roses and Mom had covered the vanity bench in the same fabric. The chest of drawers was quite tall, with a box on the top that had a hinged lid. If you lifted the lid, the inside was lined with either ribbed corduroy or velvet (not sure which). When my grandmother lived with us as an invalid, this is where she kept her medication. Even years later, it still had that medicine smell. The vanity was similiar to the one in the photo, except it was dark brown, with carvings, carved legs, more oval and singular mirror in the middle. When we moved to Texas my mom refused to bring them, thinking it was "junk". I was heart-broken. Later she realized what a great antique those were. I remember that the twin headboard I had, had once belonged to Inklings. It was wood and had carvings on it that, if I remember right, were something like nuts or acorns and oak leaves.

The last bedroom of that house that I had was the downstairs master. I call it the downstairs master, because it is the one Mom and Dad used when Inklings and I were upstairs in that master. When I was in the downstairs master, I shared the room with Delirious. We had twin beds that had bookcase headboards. These later went to Twist and Sticks. We had yellow bedspreads and yellow curtains. This was at a time when Mom was redecorating, and we got to pick what color we wanted our bedrooms. I don't think Delirious got to pick, but I did. :0) I think this is where I developed a love for the color yellow (I've had 2 yellow houses). We had wood floors all through that house, but Mom and Dad decided to get carpet. It wasn't like real carpeting, because we didn't have a pad, but Dad had found a place to get room-size carpets - they didn't go quite all the way to the wall. Of course, I think our carpet was yellow, or maybe gold. This bedroom had a big, long narrow closet in it.

The last bedroom I had was in the Texas house. Originally, when we were first told that we were moving to that house, Inklings and I got to pick our bedrooms, but then as time got closer for us to move, Mom changed her mind and picked them for us so she could put the boys in one room with their own bathroom. I got "put" in the room that later became the office. It had 2 built-in bookshelves with either shelves or drawers under them. It also had paneling half-way up the wall. Originally, this was going to be the "Pool Room", until AFTER Dad bought the pool table and got it in the room, he found out that you actually couldn't play pool in that room, because there wasn't room enough for the cue sticks. So the pool table was moved out to the garage and I got the room. Mom decided one day that she was going to make me a bedspread. Funny, how I never worried about not having one, but I guess she did. I was always perfectly happy with a quilt on my bed. Anyway, she brought home some material one day and showed it to me. I can't remember if she showed it to me before she made it into the bedspread, or somewhere along the way, but she had envisioned it to be a shiny taupe. Gag me. Well, the other side of the material was a nice dark brown that had some texture in it. I opted for that side, so much to my mother's dismay, she made it that way. I loved it. I inherited the old hanging lamp to put in the corner of my room. It was a cylindar shaped - are you ready? - orange, white and turquoise striped and was hung with a brass chain. I thought I had a pretty cool room, but I didn't have a nightstand. A few trips to the Arrowhead drive-in, and I "collected" enough car-hop trays to stack up for my nightstand to hold my yellow (yes) phone. When I got married and moved out, my dad took the car-hop trays back to the Arrowhead and returned them, appologizing for the light-fingeredness of his evil daughter.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009


I've been reading a lot of books since I got to Ireland. Sometimes I am reading 2 or 3 at a time. Mainly because I keep one upstairs and one downstairs. :0) Here's a list of the books I have read since I got here in December:

The Tales of Beadle the Bard
The Black Swan
The Pemberly Chronicles
The Romantic Story of Elizabeth Barrett Browning
The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
The Book Thief
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Nighttime
Anna Karenina
To Kill a Mockingbird
The Alchemist - Nicholaus Flamel Series
The Magician - Nicholaus Flamel Series
The Sorceress - Nicholaus Flamel Series
The Devil Wears Prad
The House at Riverton
The Thief Lord
Dream of Orchids
Artemis Fowl Series #1-3
Mrs. Arris Goes to Paris
Angels and Demons
The Girl Who Loved Tom Gordon
The Road
Journey to the River Sea
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button
Angela's Ashes
The 5 Children and It
The Enchanted Castle
The Star of Kazan
The Woman Without a Past
Light From Heaven
Listen for the Whisperer
O' Pioneers
The Woman in White
The Porter Rockwall Series #1&2
Breaking Dawn
A Countess Below Stairs
The Secret Life of Bees

I also finished the Old Testament and am half-way through The Book of Mormon, and half-way through The Doctrine and Covenants. :0)

I think I need to get a library card...

Friday, July 10, 2009


When I was a young mom, I would hear other young moms talk about how they would get babysitters to watch their kids while they went to the mall, or out to lunch, or even grocery shopping. I couldn't understand it. I loved my kids, and loved being with them. I took them everywhere with me and thought it was a great event to go to the mall or grocery shopping. I remember when my oldest was little and my only child at the time, we had to take our clothes to the laundromat because we didn't have a washer and dryer. There was a laundromat not far from our house that was right next-door to a McDonalds. We would put our laundry in the washers and go next door and eat lunch and then get back just in time to put the laundry in the dryer. Then she would play with a toy she had brought, or color or read a book and I would read my book while the clothes dried. We thought it was great fun!

Whenever I had to go to the grocery store, before I left I had to go through and pick out the coupons I would use that day. I would make my grocery list and then pick out the coupons I thought I needed and check all the expiration dates on them, then off to the store we would go. I saved a lot of money using grocery coupons - it was usually anywhere from $10-$20 per shopping trip. If I had a baby in a baby carrier, we would use two shopping carts - one for groceries and one for the baby carrier to go in. Back then the baby carriers really didn't fit the shopping carts and the slightest movement would cause them to slip and your baby and baby carrier might fall off of the shopping cart, so I would put the baby carrier down in the shopping cart. Sometimes I had an older child to push that cart for me while I pushed the groceries, but I can remember many times pushing the grocery cart and pulling the cart with the baby at the same time. Then the other kids would either ride on the front of one of the carts, or just walk behind. They weren't allowed to run free around the store either. We made quite a caravan!

My kids were usually well-behaved, but don't get me wrong - they weren't perfect. If they did act up and threatening didn't work, we left and went home. On the way home the "misbehaver" knew that the reason we ALL had to go home was because he or she misbehaved. Then they would also have to tell Dad the reason we ALL had to leave the grocery store and why we couldn't finish getting groceries. If that happened, I usually tried to go back at night alone, but many times just had to try it another day.

I can remember when Survival Knife was little. He was perfectly happy sitting in the seat of the shopping cart as long as he got to "hold" something. He didn't want to hold just anything, but something that interested him. His favorite things to hold were boxes of cereal, bags of chips, or sacks of cookies, but since we didn't always get to those things first, he also was content to hold bags of disposable diapers, tubes of toothpaste, or a bottle of lotion. As soon as I would go to put something else in the shopping cart that drew his attention, he would trade whatever he was holding for the new item.

I didn't always buy my kids a treat or toy when we went to the store. My kids didn't know this - or maybe they did - but I was always a sucker for books. If they ever asked for a new book, I usually bought it. Not an expensive book mind you, but ones like the Little Golden Books. If we ever did buy something, then Survival Knife would hold that thing until we left. Sometimes I even had to talk him into giving it to the lady so she could scan it.

I used to wonder why other moms didn't want to be with their kids? Did they not like their kids? Did they not like being a mom? Were they just lazy? I can remember one lady telling me that she would watch my kids for me when I went shopping if I would watch hers while she went shopping. I said, "Well...I take my kids with me." She asked me why and I said, "Because I like to take them. I like being with my kids." She never asked me to tend her kids again.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009


I was filling out one of those email surveys everyone sends you and this memory came to my mind, so I thought I'd blog about it.

One night when I was a teenager some friends and I started talking about Buddy Holly. For those of you that don't know him, he was a singer back in the 60's. Some people think he was the most influential person to affect rock n' roll, because his music inspired groups like The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, etc. His career only lasted about a year and a half, because he was killed in an airplane crash. People have referred to that day as "The Day the Music Died." Buddy Holly lived, and was buried, in a town that I grew up in as a teenager - Lubbock, Texas.

This night that we were talking about him, my friends mentioned that he was buried in the graveyard across town. We decided that we would go there and see his grave. So my friends Nece, Danny, Billy, Randy and I all took off for the graveyard. Just to mention, these guys were not our boyfriends, just boys that were our friends. Now according to these friends, Buddy Holly's grave was at the curve of the graveyard road, under a tree. We drove past it and we all looked at it, but by then they had all been talking about some other things in the graveyard.

One of these things was The Tomb of the Triplet Sisters. We went into the tomb, and since it was dark, Randy flicked his lighter so we could see the pictures on the side of the tomb. There were the pictures of the Three Triplet Sisters. They all had dark hair, and must have been dead for a while, because their picture was old fashioned - like they had taken the picture in the 1930's or 40's and were pretty freaky looking. I thought it especially strange that all three sisters were buried in that tomb. My friends even said that the tomb went underground and there was some kind of elevator that took you down, but I never saw anything like that. Of course, staying in the tomb and looking for the elevator was not on my top priority. Getting out of that tomb was my top priority.

We went from The Tomb of the Triplet Sisters to The Statue of the Walking Angel. This was a great big lifesize white statue of an angel in the center of the graveyard. My friends said that if you kissed his feet he would walk. Nece, and I decided to stand up on his statue base and put our arms around his shoulders. When we did, that is when Billy, leaned over and kissed his feet. We didn't stay around to see if he walked or not. We jumped down and started running for the car. We all piled in and drove off, not even looking back. We had scared ourselves silly and a graveyard near midnight was just not the place to be. This is an actual picture of The Walking Angel in the Lubbock Cemetary, although the website calls the angel "Umlauf Angel". In the email survey I was filling out, I had thought it was a statue of Jesus. After going to the Lubbock Cemetery website, I found this picture of the Angel. It's funny how years later my mind melded that angel into Jesus. :0)

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


On my flight to Atlanta, before changing planes for Ireland, I sat next to a guy going to Kentucky to Boot Camp. He was joining the Army to be a Trumpet player in the Army Band. I thoroughly enjoyed meeting Chris and talking about music, boot camp and even a little bit of Mormon religion. I was pleased to find out that Chris had dated a Mormon girl and in his words, "loved Mormons".

Chris, thanks for a truly enjoyable conversation. I hope you survive boot camp without too many aches and pains, and I'll be watching everytime I see an Army band. Remember when you said you didn't want to marry a Mormon girl and mess up her chances to be in the Celestial Kingdom? I told you there was an easy solution to that. :0) Just wanted to add that even though you broke up with the girl, feel free to "check out" the Mormon religion at any time. Hope to run into you again sometime!