Tuesday, July 31, 2007


I'm always interested to read bumper stickers on the cars in front of me as I drive. I have never been one for bumper stickers myself, but I think you can find out a lot about people from the ones they choose to display. For example, you can tell if they are political or religious or proud of their honor student. And you can sometimes judge their sense of humor or occupation or hobbies. But I saw one the other day that I absolutely could not figure out. I read it and read it again and wondered who would display this particular bumper sticker. It said..

Do not meddle in the affairs of dragons...
for you are crunchy and good with ketchup.

What?!? Who puts that on their car for the world to see. A dungeons and dragons geek (no offense), a medieval historian, a fantasy writer, Shrek? I still haven't quite figured it out. Maybe someday I will find the perfect bumper sticker for my minivan. But I'm pretty sure it won't have anything to do with dragons or ketchup.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Sweetest Wedding Ever

I just got home from the sweetest wedding ever. My sister married the love of her life. It was small and intimate, held outside in a friend's beautiful back yard overlooking Hayden Lake. But the real beauty wasn't found in the setting, but in the bride and groom. They are so much in love that you could feel it in the air. And they both so deserve it. The last few years haven't been easy for either of them. So now that they have seen and felt what real love can be, they appreciate it all the more. They stood in front of family and a few friends and declared their love to each other and their dedication to their new family that includes my wonderful nephew. It was wonderful and amazingly sweet.

My sister seemed to be kind of missing from my life for a few years while she was in a less than desirable relationship, but now she's back. She's smiling and laughing and so, so happy. She calls me and shares her life with me and tells me stories and I absolutely love it. She has always been my best friend and I'm so glad to have her in my life again. The real Ada is back. The fun, happy, life-loving one. Welcome back, sis. I love you. May the rest of your life be as full of love as tonight was. And call me, I love to hear your voice.

Friday, July 27, 2007

Time Flies...

I absolutely can't believe that it's almost August. It seems like I just finished school and it's been almost two months. We've been busy doing work around the house with a few fun things thrown in. But there's still so much I want to do. Like...
  • spend a few more days at the beach
  • go on a long weekend trip to Montana
  • attend an Indians baseball game
  • take a trip with the boys to Chuck E. Cheese
  • make a visit to a T-Rex named Sue
  • see more free movies at Riverstone
  • enjoy Sunday concerts in the park
  • spend a day at Raptor Reef
  • go for our annual day at Silverwood

And all of this has to be done during the month of August when I also have to start getting ready for the next school year. Yikes. I have to go get started on my list. Today looks like a great beach day!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


This week is Vacation Bible School at church. VBS is always busy and crazy and fun. We have about 100 kids attending this year, mostly visitors from the community. Our theme is Noah and my job is to teach the story, piece by piece, focusing on obedience, trust, faith, and hope. It's always exciting to share the Bible with God's children and especially those to whom it may be a new experience. I pray every morning that God will water the seeds that I plant and that these children will take something away from this week that will last them a lifetime.

And it's always fun to meet new kids. Being a teacher by profession kind of gives me a little advantage over those who only teach during VBS. I know within a few minutes the personality of the class as a whole and most of the kids individually. I've taught enough kids in my day that I can spot a "challenge" a mile away. That happened yesterday with one boy in particular. He wasn't disrespectful or especially disruptive. But I knew. I knew that if we spent anymore than our allotted 20 minutes together, there would be some issues. So I taught my class and he showed off and gave silly answers and I just smiled thinking about his teacher next year. Good luck whoever you are. You're going to need it.

I asked him at the end of class, "You get into trouble at school, don't you?" His answer said it all. With a mischievous little smile, he cocked his head and said, "Maybe." Yeah right, maybe. There's no maybe about it. But for some reason it's the kids like him that I remember most fondly. Not during the school year in which I see them everyday, but after. When it's only the memory that's left. The memory of their smile and silliness and sweetness under it all. So here's to all my "maybe" kids. Thanks for the memories.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

It Will All Be Over Soon

I have a confession to make. I know that what I'm about to say is going to be hard to believe, but it's true. Every word. I just hope that this revelation won't make you think badly of me, but I have to get this out in the open. Okay, here it goes. I have never...read a Harry Potter book. Or seen a movie. I know, I know. It's unbelievable that I have completely missed out on the storm that is Harry Potter. When the books first came out I wasn't really interested because I'm not a big fan of fantasy and I have to admit that the witchcraft turned me away. And now as the whole thing has grown to have a gigantic amount of overexposure, it's just to much for me to get mixed up in. I have friends who are big fans and they often have conversations that sound like a different language to me. I just smile and wait for it to pass. There are stories in the news about these books that make me wonder what kind of a slow news day they have to have to report on if Harry is going to die. He's not real, people! And waiting in line to buy a book. I love books, but it would have to have pages made of money for me to wait in line for it. One good thing I will say about the whole thing. These stories get kids to read, so they can't be all bad. Right? And maybe, since I've heard a few million times that this is the last book, all the readers of the world can move on and meet some new people. So, Harry, I never knew ya. But the truth is, you have enough friends as it is.

Friday, July 20, 2007


My mind is full today. I don't know if it's med withdrawals or just one of those days. Here are a few of the things that are spilling out of my brain today.

I have great friends. We had girl's night out last night and it was a ton of fun as usual. I was reminded once again of how blessed I am to have this group of sister friends.

Josh is getting too tall. I'm not tall at all but he is catching up to me way to fast.

Adam is the cutest thing ever. And a little dramatic. As I walked into the living room this morning, he said, "Mom, you would not believe how hungry I am!"

I have a lot to do today: clean the playroom, go into town to run errands, work on VBS lessons, take the boys to Fun Friday at church, prepare the communion trays for Sunday, call the Indians baseball guy about church night, pay bills, and probably more I'll remember as I go.

What a blessing the Bible is. Today's favorite verse is Psalm 25:15, "If I keep my eyes on God, I won't trip over my own feet." (from The Message)

Monday, July 16, 2007

Day 1

Today is the first day in six months that I haven't been on anxiety medication. I have to admit that not taking it this morning caused me a little anxiety. But nothing like what I suffered before my treatment. It all stems from the car accident that I had in April 2006. It seems that thinking that you are going to die, even for a few brief moments, can wreak havoc on your brain. My neurotransmitters were all out of whack because of the stress of it all and made me think I was having a heart attack or going crazy or both. For months I suffered from anxiety/panic attacks and all the symptoms that came with them without knowing what it was. It took two weeks of major symptoms to finally make me realize that I needed help. Counseling, to help me see what I was dealing with, and medication (even though I fought it) helped me to slowly get better. Now here I am, off the meds and hopeful that I can stay off. And better able to recognize and deal with my anxiety.

I did some research this morning on how to control anxiety naturally. I found that diet (high in fresh food, low in anything processed) and exercise can help a lot. Also relaxation techniques and meditation/prayer are helpful. Sunlight, fresh air, adequate sleep and nutritional supplements (magnesium, B complex, and calcium) were also mentioned as natural ways to deal with anxiety. All things I kind of knew and don't always do well with.

So, today is a new day. I've already meditated and prayed on my front porch in the fresh air and had a healthy breakfast. Now I'll just need to throw in a little exercise, take my vitamins, and go to bed at a decent hour. Because, whatever it takes, I will get well and stay well.

So many people suffer with anxiety attacks and aren't aware of it so they don't seek help. Following is a list of symptoms of an anxiety/panic attack:
  • heart palpitations or racing heartbeat
  • chest pain
  • hot flashes or chills
  • cold and clammy hands
  • stomach upset or queasiness
  • frequent urination or diarrhea
  • shortness of breath
  • sweating
  • dizziness
  • tremors, twitches, and jitters
  • muscle tension or aches
  • headaches
  • fatigue
  • insomnia
  • apprehension, uneasiness or dread
  • impaired concentration or selective attention
  • feeling restless or on edge
  • avoidance
  • hypervigilance
  • irritability
  • confusion
  • nervousness or jumpiness
  • self-consciousness and insecurity
  • fear that you are dying or going crazy
  • strong desire to escape

If you or someone you know suffer from panic attacks, don't suffer needlessly. Get help. Life is so much better without the pain.

Websites for more information:




Saturday, July 14, 2007

Christmas In July

We had a yard sale at our house today and just like every other time that I have a yard sale (about every two years), I am vowing to never do it again and to just take the stuff to Goodwill and be done with it. That's where most of it goes in the end anyway. We did make a little money and our effort was mostly for Josh and Adam to encourage them to get rid of some of the bazillion toys we have scattered around our house. They got to keep the money for anything of theirs that they sold. (They made $32.75 and are so excited!) But despite all the work for very little reward, something good came out of it. I went down to the basement last night to look for last minute items to include in the sale and started going through some boxes of books. I knew that I had tons of children's chapter books that I had bought while I was in college and since the boys are just now getting old enough to read them, they have been in those boxes for awhile. I love books, which is probably why their are hundreds in my house. Literally hundreds. One lady bought 55 books this morning and I still had three boxes left to sell. And there are still two boxes downstairs to keep and one to go to school. Not to mention full bookshelves in every room in the house except the kitchen and bathrooms.

Going through the boxes was like Christmas! Each one contained books that I had read before the boys were born and it was like seeing old friends. So many of those books are so good and I can't wait to share them with my kids at home and at school. I couldn't help but smile as I pulled out some of my favorites: "Sarah, Plain and Tall," "Julie Of The Wolves," "Ella Enchanted," "The Secret Garden," "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," "Number the Stars," "A Taste of Blackberries," "Jacob Have I Loved," "Onion John." All so wonderful.

But in addition to those books, I came across a bunch of books by author's that I had studied in my American Lit class this spring. I have been meaning to get to the library to check out some of their works but haven't yet. And now I don't need to. I have a stack of books just waiting to be devoured. Among them are "The Red Badge of Courage," "The Sound and the Fury," "Life on the Mississippi," "The Red Pony," "The Great Gatsby." Some I have read and others will be deliciously new. I also found an old book that I read when I was a teenager called "Jubilee Trail." I remember loving it, so it goes on the list as well as "Jane Eyre." Now I just have to decide which to read first. Maybe I'll go alphabetically.

I always say that I don't collect anything, but I guess I do. I collect books...and the friends I meet in them. And so now I'm off to make some new friends.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Half Old

Today the boys and I went to the free movie at Riverstone. It was "Over The Hedge." We'd seen it before, but hey, it's free. Aidan, my 4 year old nephew went with us. We had fun and enjoyed the show with lots of other families. On the way home we had the following conversation.

Josh: "Mom, can we go play at the park?"
Me: "No, Josh, it's too hot."
Josh: "Not for us."
Me: "The news last night said stay inside. The hot weather isn't good for kids or old people. And you're kids and I'm old."
Josh: "You're not old."
Aidan: "Yeah, you're only half old."

Thanks, Aid.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

15 Years

Today I have been married for 15 years. 15 years of good times and bad, rich and poor, sickness and health. And I am better for it. I am just as happy and in love as I was in 1992. Maybe even more so.

I am married to a man that I met when I was 11 years old. We went to school and church together. I'm pretty sure it was playing four square when we realized we were meant for each other. Actually we did like each other then, but we went to different high schools and didn't actually start dating until I was a junior and he was a senior. We dated for three years before we got married, but I like to tell people that we were engaged since middle school. It sometimes feels like it. We were married seven years before we had kids, so we had plenty of time together, just the two of us. It was fun. We worked and went to college and wandered all over the place trying restaurants and seeing movies and going to concerts. I hardly remember a time without him in my life.

In honor of our 15th anniversary, I thought I would share 15 things about my husband.

1. He knows me better than anyone, including myself.
2. He has wonderfully blue eyes that shine when he laughs.
3. He has seen me in all my craziness and still loves me more than anyone.
4. He knows what I'm talking about when I say "I knew it!" and "ice cream."
5. He likes to watch cooking and food shows on television. (Probably because he doesn't see anything like that at home.)
6. He is a great dad and makes me glad that God put us together in this family.
7. He believes in the power of prayer.
8. He loves and understands my family.
9. He's a great teacher in and out of the classroom.
10. He likes his music loud. And preferably from the 80's.
11. He knows the difference between trips and a set.
12. He has always worked hard to support our family.
13. He knows the lyrics to every song he's ever heard. Not to mention the artist, title and year it was released.
14. He's the only man I've ever kissed.
15. He is my best friend.

I thank God everyday for him and the blessing of our marriage. Especially today.

I love you, Arrty. Happy anniversary. And many more.

Saturday, July 07, 2007


My sons were born 19 months apart. When Adam was born, he weighed a pound and a half more than Josh when he was born and quickly caught up with his brother. They even wore the same size diapers for a while. That's when I knew it was time to potty train Josh! Now Adam outweighs Josh by a few pounds and they are almost the same height. Over the years I have had lots of people ask me if they are twins. I guess it's because they are so close in size because they don't really look that much alike. And, in fact, they couldn't be more different. Josh tends to be more serious where Adam is silly through and through. Adam loves anything artistic but Josh willingly admits that he doesn't even like to color. Josh has this crazy, cow-licked hair that sticks up all over the place if it's not cut short. Adam has fine, smooth hair that never looks messy. Josh loves to sit on my lap and snuggle or have his back scratched. Adam has to be asked for every hug he gives. Adam likes everything vanilla. Josh prefers chocolate. But one of the biggest differences between the two is that Josh talks to everyone and has never met a stranger where Adam is very shy around people. Even those he knows well. I was reminded of this on Friday when we went to "Fun Friday" at church. It was a bike riding day and both boys were very excited. Adam has just started riding without training wheels so ended up on the ground pretty regularly. (9 times to be exact. He counted.) But there were lots of people around, so even when I knew he was hurt, he wouldn't make a sound. That would draw attention to him, and he hates that. So he'd just get himself up and dust off or lie there with his shoe stuck under the bike until someone rescued him. I can guarantee that if the same thing would have happened to Josh, everyone would have known it including the neighbors. I'm pretty sure that he thinks, "The more attention the better." So my Adam ended up with scraped knees, but no one knew. Heaven forbid that he would actually cry in front of people. And he only said a handful of words the whole morning. But believe me, he made up for it later when it was just us. He always does.

Friday, July 06, 2007


How rich are you? >>

I'm loaded.
It's official.
I'm the 55,394,943 richest person on earth!

Thursday, July 05, 2007


Yesterday morning the boys and I were driving into town to have breakfast at my folks' house. The boys were excited about the bbq we had planned for later in the day and the festivities to come. So I asked them, "Why do we celebrate the 4th of July?" Josh, without hesitation said, "It has something to do with Jesus." I had to laugh while explaining that this holiday, in fact, doesn't have anything to do with Jesus like most of the others we celebrate. But by the end of the day, I realized that I was wrong. Everyday has something to do with Jesus. We spent time eating and playing and laughing with friends. We sat out in our yard without having to be afraid of anything but getting sprayed by a stray super soaker. I held in my arms the 9 week old baby of friends and marveled at her tiny feet and lovely smile. I watched my two healthy, happy sons slip and slide and play in the sprinkler. I enjoyed blessings that many in this world can't even imagine. So I learned, that this day, just like all the others, has everything to do with Jesus.

"I have come that they may have life and have it to the full." John 10:10b

Tuesday, July 03, 2007


Before I go any further, I just want to say that I am not a poet. I don't ordinarily write poetry and don't in fact even like to read poetry unless it's written like a story. But I have noticed that when my sons sleep, their little faces look just like they did when they were babies. And a few weeks ago, while I was lying beside them as they fell asleep, this poem came to me without even really thinking about it. I got up and grabbed my notebook and started writing and very few words changed from what I thought during those moments when their faces magically changed from six and seven years old to six and seven days old. So here goes.


When he's asleep
His face is the same
As it was so long ago.

When he's asleep
I see the one
That I cradled in my arms for hours.

When he's asleep
His face looks just like the one
I studied those first few days.

When he's asleep
He's my baby again.
Not loose teeth and
Two wheeler bikes and
Video games and
Size 2 shoes.

When he's asleep.