Friday, November 27, 2009


Ok, now that my "serious" gratitude list has been written, here is my "not so serious" gratitude list. Here are some things I say, "Thank goodness" for:

1) A comfortable king-size bed with a down comforter - Since I first discovered down comforters (and actually mine is down-alternative), I will never be without one. A comfortable, roomy bed makes all the difference in the world for a good-nights sleep.

2) Chocolate - I like dark chocolate the best, but I love it all - milk chocolate, dark chocolate, and white chocolate, with nuts or without, and even the creamy centers!

3) Harry Potter CDs - both the books on CD and the movie soundtracks - It may sound juvenile to you, but these are my "stress-relievers". I listen to one or the other every day.

4) A sense of humor - both mine and in anyone else. We need a little humor in this world.

5) The Internet - email, blogging, sending IM's, family chat, online shopping, Google (I've decided that you can google ANYTHING).

6) IPods - Haven't got one yet, but I'm getting one for Christmas - Portable music and audio books to carry wherever you go.

7) Ice - I have learned to appreciate this more living in a country who doesn't believe in serving it in your drinks. :0)

8) US Airport Security - You can say all you want, they're a little more lax in other countries, which is a little scary!

9) Jackets - probably my most favorite article of clothing. You can't have too many.
I wish I could wear them year round.

10) Books - I probably read a book a week, unless it's really thick. I read everyday for an hour while I eat my lunch.


Yesterday was Thanksgiving in the States. I went out to lunch with 3 friends and we talked about it a bit. Mostly worrying about our kids and hoping they all had a place to go for dinner. One of my friends found out one of her boys didn't have anywhere to go and she was a little upset that he would be spending Thanksgiving alone. We both shed a shared tear over it. :0) We are having 11 people over for a Thanksgiving dinner on Saturday night. We had to do it Saturday since the guys had to work Thursday and the kids had school. We have to do it Saturday night because the teenagers (4) have sports during the day. So since it hasn't been Thanksgiving for us yet, I have been thinking about gratitude and so I've decided to post 10 things that I am thankful for:

1) My husband - we will have been married for 40 years in June. Even though I miss my family terribly I have been grateful to be able to be here in Ireland where we really don't do much during the week except just be with each other. It has brought a sweet peaceful tender feeling to our relationship. I'm glad that I can spend more time with him here than I would have if we had stayed in the States and I'm happy to find out that we do enjoy being around each other even more.
2) My Children - I'm thankful to have such loving, caring children who are trying to be responsible adults. I'm grateful for the person that they have become and who they are striving to be. I am thankful that they are loving parents to their own children. I'm extremely grateful for the fact that all but one of them have lived close by me after they were married. I don't know how long they will be able to do that, but I know that if they were to move away I would miss them terribly, just like I miss our oldest who is not able to live by us. I miss them so much and will be so glad when we can finally come home.
3) My Grandchildren - I'm thankful that I can have fun with my grandchildren. I'm so happy that they live close by (we won't be in Ireland forever) and that they love to come and visit us. I'm thankful that they are such good children and that they are healthy. I'm so thankful for the love that they show to me. I also miss them so very much.
4) Our Parents - I'm grateful for honest, loving parents who raised me in the gospel. I'm thankful for all their care and advice to me and for raising me to be who I am. I'm grateful for a mother-in-law who I love to sit and talk to and who loves her son so deeply. I'm grateful that the Lord has allowed all of our parents to live as long as they have.
5) The Gospel of Jesus Christ - and the fact that Christ died for us so that we have the opportunity to repent of our sins and be resurrected. I'm thankful that we have a living prophet who leads and guides our church. I'm thankful for the saving ordinances that allow us the opportunity to live with Him again. I'm thankful for a church that involves it's members and for all the knowlege and talents I have gained by serving in the church.
6) Friends - I'm grateful for the friends I have at home and who I miss. I think of lots of people and it's funny that sometimes I will see someone on the street here or in a store that reminds me of someone I know. I think of that moment as a "tender mercy" that the Lord has given me to help me rememember the friendships I have. I am grateful for the friends I have here in Ireland who help me make it through the weeks here.
7) My Health - I'm thankful for my health and especially for my 3 yr old knees. I'm so thankful that I can walk again without pain and don't have to act like an 80 year old person anymore. I'm thankful for a doctor listened to me and did the operation even though he originally wanted me to wait 5 more years.
8) My Country, the Good Old USA - I'm so grateful to have a country that is so abundant in everything. You never realize how much more we have in the US until you go to another country. I'm thankful for the big wide streets, the wonderful freeways that make it so easy to travel around the US. I'm thankful for the grocery stores with their many, many choices and different brands. I'm thankful for the cleaning supplies, believe it or not. :0) I''m thankful for the different scenery the US offers - deserts, mountains, plains, hills and valleys.
9) My Home - I'm so thankful for my home, my house and my yard. I love the view out of my back patio. I'm thankful for being able to have such a wonderful home and for the fun that my husband and I have had in remodeling it.
10) I'm thankful for me and who I am. I'm thankful for all the influences in my life - husband,parents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, cousins, friends, enemies, the gospel, teachers, trials, successes, failures, and talents. I'm thankful for who've I've become, and even though I know that I'm not perfect, I'm thankful that I can still strive to be a better person.

Friday, November 20, 2009


I found something out lately. Even though I am a follower of several blogs, my "following" doesn't seem to be working correctly. I was looking at the list of peoples blogs I follow and wondered why this person or that person hadn't blogged in awhile. I decided to click on their blogs and saw that they indeed HAD blogged. Why didn't it show up on my dashboard in my "following section"? It made me realize that maybe for people who don't blog that often it may not work. As soon as I clicked on their blogs, then went back to my dashboard, their posts (in some cases there were multiple posts) magically appeared in my following section. Weird. Has this happened to anyone else? Is there anything I can do about this?

Thursday, November 19, 2009


Today was my weekly lunch with some of the other US wives that are here. We meet every Thursday. We really can't go out of town for lunch, because one lady has kids in 3 schools here, so we always just eat in our town. Today we went to the Bagel Shop. This town has very little parking, and even at those places you usually have to walk a couple blocks or more to get to the restaurant, so I usually just walk from my house. Yesterday we started having terrible weather. It has rained practically non-stop and the wind has blown just about as hard as it can. I heard the rain beating on my sky-light all night long and I don't think the wind ever stopped blowing. Since I knew it would be useless to carry an umbrella, I just put on my trusty raincoat (wishing that I had ordered the longer one from Travel Smith). I have this really cool rain scarf. Well at least it looks like it would be really cool, and it would be but not if the wind is blowing. If the wind blows, it catches the front and blows it back off of your head. So that was out. I have another rain scarf that snaps under my chin. You know those ones that fold into a tiny packet and fit in your purse. Like your grandma used to carry? But it looks plastered to my head and my husband hates it. I vascillated between that one and just the hood of my raincoat and finally went with the latter. I had to take my glasses off because it does no good to wear them in the rain. (Where's Hermione when you need her?) So off I went to walk the 4 blocks to the Bagel Shop. I was not prepared for the gale force winds! Holy Cow! At times I even had to hold onto the front of my hood, but I could see other people doing the same. Some silly people had brought umbrellas. I just stepped around them as they stopped to try to turn their umbrellas back right-side out. I could hear people complaining about the weather, but secretly I thought it was great fun! I must either have a sick sense of humor or be incredibly bored (Or both). :0) In fact, I thought it was such fun that after my 2 hour lunch, I decided to walk another block to the mall! Neither the rain nor the winds ever let up. My husband told me that he heard that Ireland has had a record for rainfall this year.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009


I've been trying to walk more lately. Not only to lose a few pounds, but mostly to just get my heart healthier and build up my stamina more. Now I've developed a bone spur on my heel. I've had these before. One time I went to the doctor about it. He said you can do surgery but it will just come right back, so it's better to figure out what is causing it and fix the problem. Back then I quit wearing high heels and started buying sturdier shoes and it worked. Ok, so I already have sturdy and quite comfortable shoes, so now what? I bought a pair of gel shoe inserts for my tennis shoes and a couple of different heel cushions for some other shoes. Nothing. I stopped walking. Nothing. So now I said to heck with it and have started walking again. I guess I'll do it until I can hardly walk across the floor. Wait, I'm to that point now unless I put my shoes on. Oh well, too bad. But if I stop walking then I'll just gain weight and I'm 100% sure that won't help at all. So I'll just keep walking and trying to lose weight. I know I've posted these cartoons before, but I just think they are funny!

Monday, November 16, 2009


Here's another song my mom used to sing to us, only when she sang it to us girls, it was "Mrs Zip Zip Zip. She only sang the first line though and then would improvise with a second line of "What makes you wake so soon?" I think she intertwined this song and the nursery rhyme "A Dillar, A Dollar, A Ten O'clock Scholar". I found several versions of this song, but this is the version that the sheet music is written in. YouTube had a third version of this also. I decided to post this video of the Lawrence Welk Show because he just mostly sings the chorus. I can remember watching the Lawrence Welk Show every week. I think my parents liked it, so us kids just watched it too. I posted the words to the sheet music version below the video.

We come from ev'ry quarter,
From North, South, East and West,
To clear the way to freedom
For the land we love the best.
We've left our occupations
and home, so far and dear,
But when the going's rather rough,
We raise this song in cheer:

[chorus: repeat twice]
Good morning, Mister Zip-Zip-Zip,
With your hair cut just as short as mine,
Good morning, Mister Zip-Zip-Zip,
You're surely looking fine!
Ashes to ashes, and dust to dust,
If the Camels don't get you,
The Fatimas must,
Good morning, Mister Zip-Zip-Zip,
With your hair cut just as short as,
your hair cut just as short as,
your hair cut just as short as mine.

You see them on the highway,
You meet them down the pike,
In olive drab and khaki
Are soldiers on the hike;
And as the column passes,
The word goes down the line,
Good morning, Mister Zip-Zip-Zip,
You're surely looking fine.

[repeat chorus twice]

The reference to "Camels" and "Fatimas" (fa-tee'-mas) are references to popular brands cigarettes of the time.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


My mom used to sing this song to me starting when I was a little girl, all the way up into my teens, because I used to go barefoot all the time. As I was driving to church today, I heard this exact recording on the radio. I have never heard the entire song. Mom sang to us all the time, but only snippets of songs, never the whole thing. Anyway, it's got some cute lyrics in it, so I posted the lyrics below the video. He doesn't sing the first part in this recording, but I included them in the lyrics below anyway.

Put Your Shoes On Lucy
Got an invitation to visit Manhattan
With my highfalutin' kin
Sent off to the catalog to get some clothes
Felt so stylish from my head to my toes

Seen all the sights and I even did some flirtin'
I was doin' alright till my feet started hurtin'
So I kicked off my shoes when I thought they couldn't see
But they must have, 'cos this is what they all said to me

Put your shoes on, Lucy, don't you know you're in the city
Put your shoes on, Lucy, it's really such a pity
That Lucy can't go barefoot wherever she goes
'Cause she loves to feel the wiggle of her toes

Put your shoes on Lucy 'cause you're here in old New York
You'll get by alrighty if you let 'em hear you talk
All the city slickers love that southern drawl
So give 'em that "Honey chile" and "Hi, y'all"

Lucy, let the good things happen
Lucy, won't you stop that gapin'
How you act will be the death of me
Don't they have skyscrapers down in Tennessee

Put your shoes on, Lucy, even though they kinda pinch
Stop baulkin', you gotta do some walkin', it's a cinch
Use your party manners, you'll need them and how
Put your shoes on Lucy, you're a big girl now

Friday, November 13, 2009


For some reason, this song popped into my head today. No, I'm not feeling down or depressed. This is an old song and Peggy Lee did it years and years ago. The Youtube videos of her doing it weren't very good, so I found Bette Midler singing it. I couldn't remember the verses, only the chorus. As I listened to Bette singing, I felt sorry for people who don't have the Gospel in their life. Maybe they are disappointed that "that is all there is" to life. I also felt very thankful for the Gospel in my life. I am thankful that I have a testimony of Jesus Christ and that He died for us so that we could repent and live again after this life. I am thankful that this life is NOT all there is. And I am so very thankful that I will be with my husband and my family in the next life. Listen to Bette's song. How does it make you feel?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


When we moved to Ireland a year ago, we took very little with us. Mostly clothes, a few dishes, fewer books and possessions. Now that I have lived without most of my possessions for that long, I realize how really unimportant they really are. I think the biggest thing (of possessions) that I have missed here is my piano. In fact, I have missed my piano so much, that I wish I had a baby grand piano instead of my upright one. So see, I really haven't missed MY piano, just pianos in general. I have realized that the most important things are family and friends. I have the Gospel here, so I don't miss that, although I do miss being in a place where the gospel is stronger.
Realizing that I don't miss my possessions makes me wonder - when I go back home to visit - why do I have so much stuff? It makes me want to go through my closets and throw stuff out, which is probably what I will do when I get home. I have this disorder (for lack of a better word) that I think I must have inherited from my mother or my grandmother. I keep "stuff" around because I think I or someone else might need it. I get a lot of pleasure by being able to give someone something I don't need, that they do need.
I have a storage closet that I love! It used to actually be a sauna, but when we bought this house, we ripped it out. I loved the cedar boards on the walls and BEGGED my husband to keep them. He couldn't understand why I wanted to. He told me he would put "nice" sheetrock up and then I could paint it. I liked the cedar boards and for once could not win this argument with my husband. I don't know if I just got tired and gave up, or what, because I really did like those boards. And besides, you can hardly see the walls, because I put up 3 huge metal shelf units in there. I'm talking the heavy duty kind that will hold 300 pounds on each shelf. They have a white coating on them and I think they look nice, and there is 3 shelves on each unit. Originally I thought I would use it for food storage, with maybe one shelf for crafts. I think right now it is about 2/3 crafts and 1/3 food storage - because I have too much stuff. Then my "grandma/mom" side kicks in and says that I NEED all that "stuff" for when the "famine" comes. (A great saying of my mom's.) I know that my craft "stuff" is not food, but after the holocaust or natural disaster, I will still be able to make crafty stuff and my hovel will look so nicely decorated throughout whatever season we are having!

Monday, November 9, 2009


Click on comic strip to make it bigger.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Agnes is my favorite comic strip. I used to read the comics everyday while I ate breakfast, but then I decided to read my scriptures then instead. A worthy cause, and I have not regretted it, but I have really missed reading Agnes. Recently Amber posted an Agnes cartoon on her blog, and that reminded me that I can go online to read Agnes. Yay! So today I went there and when I saw this Agnes strip, it really cracked me up. If you will click on the strip, it will open bigger where you can read it:

Monday, November 2, 2009


The people who live next door to me here in Ireland smoke. At least someone in their family does. It is a man and his wife and they have 2 small children and 2 teenage boys. I guess they don't allow smoking in their house, because they smoke between our houses (on their side of our 6 foot concrete block wall)and then they throw their cigarette butts into my yard. They land around my walkway where I walk to take the trashcan in and out of the backyard. They also land around my front door (this all depending on where they are when they are smoking). For a loooong time I picked them up and threw them away in my trashcan. But as fast as I picked them up, they threw more over. So now I have had it. I thought of several things I could do: 1)Pick them up and take them over to them and complain to them, 2)Complain to my landlord and let him go over, 3)Turn the other cheek and continue to just pick them up and throw them away, 4)Leave them on the ground. I have chosen not to do any of these things and instead have come up with a 5th option: Now I pick them up and throw them back over the fence. I know that is not nice of me. I know I should turn the other cheek. But too bad. I can't believe someone would think that they could just keep throwing stuff over the fence and it will magically disappear. Today I found some new things thrown over the fence. I'll tell you what it is and you tell me what it sounds like: An empty water bottle, a rather large (like 6-8") rubber band, a bottle of cleaner that said it was for "piercings". Should I have thrown those back over the fence too? I didn't. This time.