Wednesday, July 29, 2009

nepal or bust

This was Danielle as I was saying good bye to her last Friday. It was hard for both of us, but we both knew she was about to embark on a life changing adventure, and we were excited for that. Thank you to everyone who responded to this post and have lifted up a prayer for her, her team, and the trip.

She has sent two updates thus far and they both have been rays of sunshine for Don and I. If you would like to read them, and any future correspondence, they are posted on her blog, Daze of Dani.

Again, thank you for your prayers.

Monday, July 27, 2009


If you left a comment to yesterday's post, thank you. My post wasn't really directed at anyone. It truly was just wonderings and I knew other bloggers were wondering some of the same things. I definitely understand the busyness of summer. I know that's been part of my problem.

I had not thought about Facebook as a possible reason for the waning blogosphere, but it makes a lot of sense. I'm sure that many women blog to connect with others and Facebook is a great place to achieve that. Originally, Facebook was only for college students. It was designed strictly for that group. Then they opened it up and the High School age (if not younger) and young adults signed up. I was on, too, because I worked with the youth and like I said, it's a great way to connect with others.

But there weren't too many people over the age of 30 using this social networking site until a year or so ago, and then there was an explosion of people joining. My "friends" include: family, church friends, blogging friends, old classmates, old youth group students, current youth group students, and acquaintances of all kinds. I love and use Facebook as a wonderful tool to keep in touch with all these people. Needless to say, I spend a fair amount of time logged in.

So I can see where some bloggers have switched their priorities and use Facebook to connect with others. Plus, they have all those quizzes, surveys, fan sites, and games, not to mention the status updates. You could spend all day on the site, and I know some people who do. Don't worry... if you think I'm talking about you, I'm not. Those people don't read my blog =)

Even though I use Facebook and enjoy my time there, I will continue my blogging. For me, connecting with others is a bonus to blogging. I truly enjoy the relationships that form here in bloggyland, but my number one purpose to blogging is that I have an ongoing record of my life, my thoughts, and my feelings. Facebook doesn't come close to offering me that.

And don't even get me started on the subject of Twitter.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

just wondering

I wonder...

... why I haven't been more motivated to blog.

... why other bloggers aren't posting as much.

... why some bloggers have ceased to write completely.

... why comments have been so scarce.

... if my posts are lacking something, like interest.

... if I would be more motivated to write a post if I knew more people were reading it.

... if other bloggers have been less motivated, or if it's just the season of summer.

... what I can write about tomorrow.

Speaking of blogging, Michelle of Scribbit wrote a great post on what she's learned about blogging that has me wondering even more.
Check it out.

Friday, July 24, 2009

laughter is the best medicine

I've had a busy week helping Danielle get ready for her trip (read previous post) so I haven't posted since Sunday. But I figured I could come up with a question for Aloha Friday to get me back into the routine of posting.

My Aloha Friday question is:

What is something that can always make you feel better?

My answer to this question is laughter. I believe that laughter is so good for the soul. If I am down about something, I usually try to find something I can watch - either a TV show or a movie, where I can sit back and laugh. Not only does it take my mind off of whatever it is that is bothering me, but it serves as a soothing balm and lifts my spirits. You know what they say... laughter is the best medicine. At least it is for me.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

on my knees

This Friday is a big day.
... especially for Danielle
... but also, for me.

My 21 year old daughter, Danielle, leaves for a month long mission trip to Nepal this Friday. She is very excited, and a little nervous, to be finally leaving after months of preparing for this trip. She and eight others have bonded as a team and feel like they are ready - emotionally, physically, and spiritually.

Me? Well, my level of readiness for having her leave isn't quite as high. I can't help but have a certain level of anxiety over her traveling half way around the world, to a country with political unrest and where there has been violence perpetrated towards Christians.

Danielle has said from day one that she felt God wanted her on this trip, and as I've watched her over the months, I believe this, too. And if God has called her and the rest of the team, then His plans for them and the trip will be carried out. He will be watching over them.

But that doesn't mean that I won't be on my knees each and every day. I know the power of prayer and this team and trip have been bathed in prayer. Our pastor had Danielle come forward this morning so he could say a special prayer for her and asked the congregation to be praying for her during the month. Tonight, there was a send-off for the team where family and friends were invited. The meeting ended in a powerful time of prayer. It has given me some peace to know how many people have been and will be praying for this small group who's only desire is to be the hands and heart of Christ.

If you are so inclined, can I ask you to say a prayer for Danielle, for her team, and for this trip. And you could add me to that prayer, too - just for the relief of anxiety that creeps up when I let my guard down and forget that God is in control.

Thank you so much. Your prayers are greatly appreciated.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

school dance

If I Could Blog Back Time
is hosted each Thursday by Lola of Lola's Diner.

Today's topic: School Dance
What was your first school dance? Or memorable Homecoming Dance or Prom? Tell us about it. And if you've got photos of the event, post them.

In thinking on this subject, I realized that I have several occasions I could write about. I also have pictures from the last two year's worth of high school dances, but I think I'll save those for another time.

There was one dance that will forever be etched in my memory. It was my sophomore year and it was a Sadie Hawkins dance. [For those who might not know what that is, it is where the girls ask the guys to go to the dance with them.] The theme at my high school for Sadie Hawkins was country or cow boy/girl, which made this situation a little better since I didn't put a lot of money into a dress and all that goes along with that.

There were a couple of guys that I had my eyes on to invite to the dance. I was excited (and nervous) to ask one of them but really looking forward to the dance. I remember sitting around with a group of my friends in youth group discussing the upcoming dance and who was going with who. As the group thinned out, an old boyfriend came up to me and convinced me that I should ask him to the dance - as friends.

I was a little surprised. We had our time together but it had passed. We had remained friends and he was one of the cutest boys at church and in school. There was a little part of me that was flattered that he wanted to go with me. I even entertained thoughts that he had deeper feelings for me than I thought. But there was a bigger part of me that didn't want to ask him because there was another boy I really wanted to ask. This was my chance to act on my feelings without it becoming "weird" to let him know that I liked him.

To make a long story short, I agreed to inviting this boy. my old boyfriend. We met at the dance and went in together. I think we even danced a dance or two. I don't remember all the details because what I do remember is that he ended up ditching me for another girl. He deserted me and when I finally found him, he was having his picture taken with this other girl. I then watched him dance with her and sip punch together before I called my mom to come pick me up.

What I didn't know at the time was that this boy and girl had liked each other for some time but had only shared their affection for each other after the girl had already asked another boy to the dance. My date needed a way to get into the dance so he could spend some time with her. I was his way in. It didn't really help my hurt feelings to find out that the guy she took to the dance was dumped in much the same way as I was. Nope, my feelings were pretty well stomped on.

The boy and I didn't talk much after that. He knew he had been a jerk and even though I didn't hold a grudge, I had no need for someone like that in my life. Some lessons are harder on us than others.

Okay, to end this post on a positive note, I'm including pictures, even though I cringe at them, from the next two Sadie Hawkins dances (1976 and 1977). By my Junior year, Don and I were seriously dating and I attended all the dances with him. They were all happy occasions.

Monday, July 13, 2009

what will this week look like?

It's been a long and winding road, full of pot holes... and we're still not at the end.

Let me explain.

Don and I decided at the end of last summer that we wanted to to buy a pop-up camper trailer. We have had them before and could kick ourselves for selling our last one. It was perfect but we had stopped using it (youth ministry took our weekends away from us), and felt the best thing was to sell it.

When Spring finally came around this year, we started looking for a camper - mostly on Craig's List. We had been saving and had the cash. All we needed was that one camper.

It's been an uphill battle. Most of our experiences were calling the seller within a few hours of when it was listed only to find out the trailer had already been sold.

But there was also the time when the seller crashed and damaged the camper an hour or so before we were to see it. Of course, he didn't bother to let us know before we drove the hour to get there and didn't expect it to make a difference in our decision to buy his trailer.

Then there was the Sunday afternoon we were supposed to go see what seemed like the perfect camper only to get a call that morning letting us know that the something on the trailer broke and couldn't be cranked up and opened up.

And this one was the most frustrating. We were the first to call and granted the first view and opportunity to buy what looked like a beautiful pop-up. It was the Saturday before Father's Day and the buyer didn't want to meet that day or the next due to the holiday. We had to wait until Monday. Don gets off work early, we bought sandwiches for the hour and a half ride north, and were ready to go when we got the call to tell us that the wife had sold the camper earlier that day.

She had received a call from someone who wanted to come and see the trailer. She told him he could see it second after us. He then offered to buy it sight unseen. How could she refuse?

But it was that trailer that broke and wasn't able to be shown that we couldn't let go of. The sellers lived near by and we kept in contact with them, letting them know that we were still interested. They had to order a part which took a couple of weeks, but when they finally did the repairs, they gave us a call.

That was yesterday morning, and this was us yesterday evening...

The other part to this story is that this week was supposed to be our family vacation. Don took the week off and the kids chose to go camping over almost anything else. When we made these plans, we figured we'd have a camper by this date. So purchasing the pop-up yesterday was cutting it pretty close... but, hey! we did it. We have a camper.

But here now is the problem; we didn't realize until we got home last night with the trailer that the outside driving lights were not working. Don took it in this morning to be fixed, but we don't know how long that's going to take. So here we sit, on the Monday night of our vacation, not knowing what the rest of this week looks like. This may end up being the worst vacation ever. But, hey! we have a camper, and we are happy about that.

Friday, July 10, 2009

pack up the car


It's Friday! It's Aloha Friday!

This week's question:

If you were to take a road trip, where would you go?

I ask because we might be taking a road trip next week. As of this writing, our original vacation plans have not worked out and we're considering going to plan, um... C, which is a road trip. But we're not sure where to go. Some of the places we're considering are Yellowstone, Mt. Rushmore, or Mesa Verde - all beautiful National Parks.

Our kids grew up loving road trips due to how many trips we made between here and California to visit family. They say they still enjoy road trips but I think it would be different now. They are older, thus bigger and neither one of our vehicles is very large, thus it wouldn't be as comfortable. So, plan C may be scrapped. We'll be figuring it all out today. Stay tuned.

Kailani, of An Island Life, hosts Aloha Friday each week.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

favorite peaceful place

I recently came across something that I thought would be fun plus it keeps in line with the purpose of my blog; to record my personal history. Every Thursday, Lola from Lola's Diner hosts If I Could Blog Back Time. Each week she gives us a different topic to reflect on and share our memories through a blog post.

This week's topic is: Favorite Peaceful Place
What are some of your favorite outdoor places to go where your spirit is lifted and the rest of the world doesn't matter? Where life stands still and you feel at peace?

Growing up, I moved quite frequently, which meant I never had close friends. To compensate for this, I always made or found a place that I could go to be all by myself, with my own thoughts and imagination. I remember times when I would need to be by myself to escape reality, whether that meant my parents, my siblings, school, or school mates. I'm not sure I would describe the result of these times as one where my spirit was lifted, but I know I could shut out everything to the point where the world didn't matter. I did feel at peace.

Out of all these places of my childhood, the one I would have to say was my favorite was the rooftop of our garage where I lived when I was in sixth grade. I only lived there for a year and in some ways, it was a difficult year. I would climb a tree (it was either an apricot or peach) that stood next to the garage. Once I got high enough, I could step onto the roof. I could walk all around the roof, and usually did. From that vantage point, I could look into neighbor's yards and watch the cars go by on the nearby freeway. Most of the time I would just sit and be. The roof was my refuge.

There was one other place that came to mind while reflecting on this particular topic. From sixth grade on, I lived in a city near the beach. Once I was old enough to drive, I often drove down to a specific beach and park on the street overlooking the water. I could sit there in my car or on one of the many benches and watch the water, the birds, and the people engaged in their "beachy" activities like surfing, flying kites or rollerblading. I mainly went there when I needed to think and figure something out. Being at or near the beach always lifts my spirits and will always be a popular refuge.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

the best job in the world


  • Long term, team players needed, for challenging, permanent work in an often chaotic environment.
  • Candidates must possess excellent communication and organizational skills and be willing to work variable hours, which will include evenings and weekends and frequent 24 hour shifts on call.
  • Some overnight travel required, including trips to primitive camping sites on rainy weekends and endless sports tournaments in far away cities.
  • Travel expenses not reimbursed.
  • Extensive courier duties also required.

The rest of your life...
  • Must be willing to be hated, at least temporarily, until someone needs $5.
  • Must be willing to bite tongue repeatedly.
  • Also, must possess the physical stamina of a pack mule and be able to go from zero to 60 mph in three seconds flat in case, this time, the screams from the backyard are not someone just crying wolf.
  • Must be willing to face stimulating technical challenges, such as small gadget repair, mysteriously sluggish toilets and stuck zippers.
  • Must screen phone calls, maintain calendars and coordinate production of multiple homework projects.
  • Must have ability to plan and organize social gatherings for clients of all ages and mental outlooks.
  • Must be willing to be indispensable one minute, an embarrassment the next.
  • Must handle assembly and product safety testing of a half million cheap, plastic toys, and battery operated devices.
  • Must always hope for the best but be prepared for the worst.
  • Must assume final, complete accountability for the quality of the end product.
  • Responsibilities also include floor maintenance and janitorial work throughout the facility.

Your job is to remain in the same position for years, without complaining, constantly retraining and updating your skills so that those in your charge can ultimately surpass you.


None required unfortunately.
On-the-job-training offered on a continually exhausting basis.


You pay them!
  • Offering frequent raises an bonuses.
  • A balloon payment is due when they turn 18 because of the assumption that college will help them become financially independent.
  • When you die, you give them whatever is left.
The oddest thing about this reverse-salary scheme is that you actually enjoy it and wish you could only do more.


While no health or dental insurance, no pension, no tuition reimbursement, no paid holidays and no stock options are offered; this job supplies limitless opportunities for personal growth, unconditional love, and free hugs and kisses for life, if you play your cards right.


When I saw this, I thought of my daughter, Danielle. She's 21 and has had nanny type jobs for the past three summers. The more she handles this type of responsibility and the more she understands what her mother and father have done for her, she questions why anyone would want to be a mother (or father).

I tell her that she won't quite understand it fully until she, herself, is a mother. I try to explain that a child brings more joy than hardship; that they are gifts from God and bless the lives of his or her parents and when the time is right, she will want a child. She's not so sure.

And for me... I'm glad there's no retirement.

Monday, July 6, 2009

weekend wrap up

What a busy weekend we had. I am so glad I have nothing to do today... well, except for laundry. There's always laundry to do.

We decided to celebrate our country's birthday by going for a hike. We went to a local state park named Castlewood Canyon and three hours later we climbed out of the canyon sweaty and very tired. It's really not that hard of a hike. I, and a couple of other members of the family, are just out of shape. It was a nice day, though. There was enough cloud cover most of the time to keep us on the cooler side and beautiful surroundings.

(you can click on the above collage to get a better view of each photo)

We went home and took short naps before eating dinner and heading over to watch our local fireworks. We weren't sure the show would go on because of thunderstorms and rain that rolled through during the late afternoon hours. The temperature dropped to around 60 but the rain had stopped and the fireworks were launched. Twenty five minutes of bombs bursting in air was a nice way to end the day.

We spent all day Sunday moving Danielle into her new apartment. She and good friend Meagan will be sharing a two bedroom apartment near her school. The apartment is nothing fancy but I think the two of them will make it cute and their own.

Don and I have decided that this will be the last time we play the roles of "movers." [I think I've said this before.] She will be starting her Senior year this fall and every year we have moved her into a new place. And every time except one, she moved out and stayed here at home for the summer and then moved to her new home. That meant an extra move. Of course, along the way, she has collected more "stuff." From here on out, we will (or she will) have to pay for someone to lug all that "stuff" up two and a half flight of stairs (or whatever it may be).

By the time we got home last night, we were ready for an early retreat to bed. And boy did that bed feel good.

Friday, July 3, 2009

bbq and firecrackers


This week's Aloha Friday question is...

What are your plans for Independence Day?

I wish I had some big plans to report about but I don't. We've been invited to some friend's home for a BBQ dinner and then to watch local fireworks from their backyard. So we might do that. We thought about trying to get tickets to the Rockies game and watch their fireworks show after the game. We're pretty sure the game is sold out and if we wanted tickets, we'd have to go down to the stadium and try to buy tickets from someone on the street. Or we're thinking about taking sandwiches early to a local park and hanging out until the biggest fireworks display in Colorado starts.

We just can't decide but will some time today. All of the above options concern the evening hours, which means we have all the hours of the day free. Should we try to find something to do while the sun still shines? We could go to the pool. Or maybe go for a hike. Just don't know yet.

And we may have a spoiler for the day and/or evening. Our weather pattern shows that we can expect thunder storms. We've been in this pattern for a while now and we've had some pretty severe storms. I can't imagine firework shows being canceled because of weather, but it could happen. We may have lightning lighting up the night sky instead of the beautiful fireworks that I love so much.

Whatever we do, we will be celebrating our country's independence. And whatever you are doing, I hope your day is full of fun and celebration.