Archive for May, 2009

Aussie Teenage Song Video

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

My blogging friend Linda (Remote Treechanger), who lives in Australia, posted this “Aussie Teenage Song video” on her blog.

Do you know any U.S. teenagers who converse in this manner? I’m thankful my kiddos include me in their conversations.

Excuses, excuses

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Green growth and blue skies

Lovely days lure me outside

I forget my blog.


Don’t have much to say

Maybe I feel uninspired.

No boring blog posts.


Still no camera.

What’s a blog without pictures?

Cuts down on blogging.


I stay up too late

Playing word games on Facebook.

Blog goes unposted.


So I live and love,

Work and play, sleep and waken,

A dormant blogger.


‘Til I get my groove

Come visit me on Facebook,

My blogging buddies.


Simple Woman’s Daybook

Monday, May 25th, 2009


Hosted by Peggy

For Today…May 25, 2009

Outside my Window…Nighttime; smells like rain is on the way.

I am thinking…I have so much for which to be grateful. I thank the Lord for a delightful day spent with family and friends today.

From the learning rooms…One of the teachers with whom I work lent me a book I’m really enjoying entitled Tools for Teaching by Fred Jones. Some of the chapters sound so interesting. How about this: Weaning the Helpless Handraisers? There are some kids who don’t listen while the lesson is being presented, but expect you to come and present them with a private lesson when they’re supposed to start working. Better yet, they would like you to do the work for them!

I am thankful for…a quiet home, and time to sleep.

From the kitchen…We enjoyed smoked spareribs with homemade BBQ sauce and roasted red potato salad today. Though smoking the spareribs took extra time, it was worth it. So delicious!

I am wearing…Blue jeans skirt and floral print blue top (still long-sleeved).

I am reading…Tools for Teaching by Fred Jones. Lots of you home school moms would enjoy this book I think.

I am hoping…to continue helping eighth grade students tomorrow with a complicated final project which will be due soon.

I am creating…this blog post before I turn into a pumpkin at midnight.

I am hearing…quiet house sounds.

Around the house…The grass is growing so fast. Things are truly lush and green around here now.

One of my favorite things…is preparing delicious food for my family to enjoy, especially when I’m not rushed for time.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week…Well, I would like to bake bread tomorrow. I’m sure there will be plenty to do.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you…


Grandson Diederick loves going to the park near his home with his mommy and little sister.

Hostess Peggy says this about The Simple Woman’s Daybook:

Are you content to linger on the simple things of life…then join me in taking a little look into the day plans and thoughts of those of us who are focusing on simplicity…the beauty of the everyday moments around us. That is my vision for this idea!

Eight Things

Tuesday, May 19th, 2009

I saw this meme over at 4everMom’s blog. She also included the category 8 Shows I Watch on TV, but I don’t watch TV. That’s a good thing, since I spend plenty of time relaxing online as it is!


8 Things I’m Looking Forward To:

  1. More time to clean the house during the summer.
  2. More time to prepare meals during the summer.
  3. Being warm during the summer. It seemed like a long winter this year!
  4. Attending a Quince anos party for the first time.
  5. Going sailing in my husband’s little 12 foot Pelican sailboat, strictly as a passenger, though. And, please let it be on a lake, not the sound.
  6. The children’s help during the summer to declutter the house a bit more.
  7. I hope we can afford to travel to California to visit Grampa and Gramma Taron this summer.
  8. Someday, somehow, I want to sew or purchase new curtains for the house.


8 Things I Did Yesterday:

  1. Worked at the middle school from 9am until 1pm.
  2. Grabbed a quick lunch at home and visited with my husband.
  3. Drove to Lynden to pick up my mom from her home to take her for a doctor visit.
  4. Did some shopping for my mom, and grocery shopping for us.
  5. Did a Simple Woman’s blog post, after not writing on my blog for a while.
  6. Played Lexulous, a Scrabble-take off, on Facebook.
  7. Prepared yummy hamburgers for dinner, which Rick cooked on the barbeque. Yum!
  8. Did my usual stretching exercises before bed.

8 Things I Wish I Could Do:

  1. It would be lovely to have the energy level and stamina that I had in my 20s and 30s.
  2. Someday I would like to get back into practicing a musical instrument. I especially enjoy acoustic guitar and soprano recorder. I no longer have the breath for French horn or flute.
  3. I would like to get back into sewing, too. One problem is that I prefer to move around rather than sit. Guess that means I won’t get back into doing embroidery.
  4. I would like to work outside more. I’m focusing on doing inside work first.
  5. It’s difficult to think of things I “wish” I could do, since I am so very privileged to have already received the desires of my heart: a godly husband, and nine children who love the Lord. I have as well God’s assurance in Romans 8:28 that all things work together for good to those who love Him.
  6. I wish to be a useful, compassionate person for as long as God grants me life.
  7. I wish to be a good gramma who doesn’t butt into her grown kids’ lives too much, but just enough so they know that I care about them.
  8. I wish to see all our kids make wise, godly decisions as to whom they marry.


I realize that my “wish I could do” list changed to a “thankful for” and “looking forward to” list, but that’s what you get.


How about you? Would you like to participate in the Eight Things meme?

Simple Woman’s Daybook

Monday, May 18th, 2009


Hosted by Peggy

For Today…May 17, 2009

Outside my Window…is a misty, moisty evening. We had quite a downpour this afternoon, and it’s still raining steadily. The May flowers are drinking up the May showers. The hostas, dicentra, and ferns seem especially perky this evening.

I am thinking…that summer vacation will be here soon! School is done on June 12th for us. I still don’t know if funds will be available for summer school to be offered this year. If there’s no summer school, I’ll be keeping busy at home instead.

From the learning rooms…Our 8th grade students are keeping very busy with their Breakout projects. The students explore a social issue (such as hunger, gang activity, child soldiers, the plight of refugees, or modern-day slavery, for example), do volunteer work in the community, and finally write a report and give an oral presentation before a panel of adults before they pass on to high school. This project is meant to help students “break out” of a self-centered world view to care a little more about others in our world who are suffering.

I am thankful for…God’s faithful provision. We have enough of all that we really need even during these tight economic times.

From the kitchen…Yesterday I tried a recipe (modified it slightly) from the June 2009 issue of Better Homes and Gardens. They called it Potato Salad With Country Ranch Dressing, but I call it Roasted Red Potato Salad, since I just couldn’t bring myself to add the ranch dressing mix. It is our new favorite potato salad!


3 pounds round red potatoes, cut in 1-inch pieces

1 small red onion, diced

6 cloves garlic, minced

2 Tablespoons olive oil

1 cup frozen whole kernel corn

¾ cup mayonnaise

2 Tablespoons cider vinegar

¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)

1 stalk celery, sliced

3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and chopped

Salt to taste

Optional: 1 one-ounce envelope dry ranch salad dressing mix

    1 avocado, halved, seeded, peeled, and chopped


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Place potatoes, onion, and garlic in 15x10x1-inch baking pan. Drizzle olive oil; toss to coat. Roast, uncovered, 20 minutes. Stir vegetables; add corn. Roast 15 to 20 minutes more or until vegetables are tender and browned.
  2. Sprinkle the vinegar over the hot potato mixture. Once the potatoes are cool, mix in the remaining ingredients.

Makes 12 servings.


I am wearing…still warm clothing. Sunday was warm, though. I was able to wear a light-weight blouse without a sweater! Woohoo!

I am reading…or rather, just finished reading an interesting and well-written book by Wendy Mass, A Mango-Shaped Space. Did you know that some people really do see sounds, see letters and numbers as having a certain color, or even see colors and shapes accompanying some tastes? The main character in this story has this disorder, which is called synesthesia. That is just the framework within which this interesting story occurs, however. This book is meant for young adults.

I am hoping…that our son’s 7th grade class gets to go on their field trip about the Snow Goose, a marine biology ship. Some windiness is expected tomorrow, so we’ll just have to wait and see.

I am creating…fewer blog posts these days, but didn’t want to miss this one.

I am hearing…my husband humming a psalm tune. We just finished family worship, our time of reading the Bible, singing and praying.

Around the house…Outside it is green, green, green. With longer daylight hours and plenty of rain, all the plant life is burgeoning.

One of my favorite things…is being dry and cozy inside with my family while the rain is pouring down outside.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week…This Saturday, Lydia and Seth are participating in Lydia’s girlfriend’s Quinceanera party. They have been practicing a traditional dance for this elaborate coming-of-age 15th birthday party. We pick up Seth’s tuxedo on Friday, and early Saturday morning, Lydia gets her hair done. Professional photographs in a lovely park happen first, then dinner, and then the dance. Our whole family is invited. I am excited to see what this will be like!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you…


Lydia did this little sketch recently. I think she’s looking forward to summer!

Hostess Peggy says this about The Simple Woman’s Daybook:

Are you content to linger on the simple things of life…then join me in taking a little look into the day plans and thoughts of those of us who are focusing on simplicity…the beauty of the everyday moments around us. That is my vision for this idea!

20 Of My Favorite Things

Wednesday, May 13th, 2009

1. Color- the many shades of green I see outside my window
2. Dessert- freshly baked apple dumplings
3. Smell- the perfumes Pretty and Green Tea by Elizabeth Arden
4. Flower- sunflower
5. Animal- cats AND dogs, I just can’t decide on a favorite
6. Month- each month, as it comes, is my favorite. I enjoy seasonal variety.
7. Beverage- a freshly brewed cup of coffee
8. Pair of shoes- Well, I have a favorite new shoe store, Sole Obsession, because they carry my large size in feminine styles! Happy Day!
9. Snack- sliced Fuji apple
10. Song- anything sung by Eva Cassidy
11. Book- the Bible

12. Fruit- apple, if it is crisp and tart
13. Hairstyle- easy care, not flat against my head
14. Piece of clothing- anything comfortable, yet not sloppy-looking fits the bill
15. Store to clothes shop-
Target and Walmart
16. Season- autumn
17. Hobby- going out with my children
18. Thing to collect- memories
19. Movie- I’m looking forward to the new Night in the Museum movie
20. Restaurant- a local restaurant called The North Fork

Would you like to participate in this meme, too? It is being hosted by Peggy at The Simple Woman.

Simple Woman’s Daybook

Monday, May 11th, 2009


Hosted by Peggy

For Today…May 11, 2009

Outside my Window…Beauty: The white dogwood blossoms seem to glow in the twilight. Moisture: We’re experiencing quite a downpour this evening, and it’s coolish: 46 degrees. We even had some thunder and lightning.

I am thinking…The site has helpful information about heart health for women. This evening I filled out their form with my total cholesterol, LDL cholesterol, HDL cholesterol, Triglycerides, Blood Pressure, Fasting Glucose, Height, Weight, and Waist measurement. From that I found out that my heart attack risk is 2% and that I don’t have metabolic syndrome. However, they do recommend that I lose some weight (which I already knew), and that I work to lower my total cholesterol a bit.

From the learning rooms…It’s hard to believe that school will be over in one month! We’re still waiting to find out if funding will be available for summer school this year. I helped out with that last year, and found it to be such a rewarding experience. Instruction covers organizational skills, study habits, and positive choices, as well as academic subjects.

I am thankful for…each precious member of my family. Thank you, children, for your loving gifts on Mother’s Day: the handmade card, the “Pretty” perfume, the bouquet of flowers, and the fuchsia planter. I appreciate your loving helpfulness every day, too.

From the kitchen…I made two kinds of chili tonight, vegetarian and the ground beef version. This was a simple but satisfying meal on this drizzly evening.

I am wearing…cozy clothes. It’s not short-sleeve weather yet.

I am reading…I just finished an excellent book for middle school and high school girls entitled Models don’t eat chocolate cookies by Erin Dionne. This was such an enjoyable read, with undercurrents of good advice about health, body image, and how to deal with girl bullies.

I am hoping…that a good night’s rest will help my back to feel stronger and more relaxed. This ouchiness happens every so often.

I am creating…I recently baked banana bread for a friend. That’s about as creative as I’ve gotten lately.

I am hearing…The naughty dog chowing down on the cats’ dry food.

Around the house…The children are watching a DVD, “Frontier House,” about modern day folks attempted to live as folks from the 1800s did. If the kiddos recommend it, I’ll view the next episode with them.

One of my favorite things…is doing things with my kids. Rebecca and I have quite a bit to do together this week. I list a few of them in the next section.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week…Wednesday Reb and I need to attend a meeting for the Medical Tech Prep program into which she has been accepted. Tuesday, she will begin her Tuberculosis test, which is necessary to participate in the program. Thursday, she registers for classes at the local community college. This is through a program for high school juniors and seniors which is called Running Start. This excellent program pays the whole tuition bill!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you…


This is a wedding photo of Rick and me that he played with in a paint program.

Hostess Peggy says this about The Simple Woman’s Daybook:

Are you content to linger on the simple things of life…then join me in taking a little look into the day plans and thoughts of those of us who are focusing on simplicity…the beauty of the everyday moments around us. That is my vision for this idea!

The Gift – a book

Friday, May 8th, 2009

There’s a portion of a song that goes something like, “If you can’t be with the one you love, Honey, love the one you’re with.” (Is that by Will Young?) (Correction on 5/9: My friend Chris, who knows everything about music, told me that this is by Stephen Stills. He also wants you to know that Stills means something by those lyrics quite different from what I say.)

That line can have a variety of meanings, but one spin is reminiscent of the parable of the Good Samaritan told by the Lord Jesus Christ. The Samaritans and the Jews were traditionally enemies, but when a Samaritan took pity on a wounded Jewish man, Jesus said that it was the Samaritan who was truly the neighbor to the Jew, not those who would usually be called “neighbors.” He showed his neighborliness by his behavior.

Think of family love. More and more folks are opening their hearts and homes to adopt children who are not “bone of their bone and flesh of their flesh.” Does this mean they’re not really “family”? Does this mean that the real bond, the stronger bond, is the biological bond? I think most of us realize that it takes more than biology to make a family; you need genuine LOVE.

Sometimes we hear that adopted children worry about this. They wonder if they’re REALLY a part of the adopted family, or if they’re more a part of the birth parents.

I recently purchased a book by Karen Craft and Meghan Branscomb entitled The Gift. This book is a bit about adoption, and a lot about family love. I don’t want to give any spoilers, but I do recommend it to you! You can find out about ordering this book on the site Just Sharing a Story.


Little Love Bugs

Monday, May 4th, 2009

Aren’t my grandchildren, Carly and Diederick, the cutest little mischief monkeys you ever did see? This photo is my Mother’s Day gift from daughter Laura.


A Bushel of Blessings

Sunday, May 3rd, 2009

Today I have been especially sensible of the blessings I receive from God’s hand. Maybe the fact that it’s Sunday, when we step back from the busy doings of the other days of the week to focus on worshiping the Lord, has something to do with that.

The drive to church this morning was beautiful, the epitome of spring time freshness, after the heavy rain last night. Fluffy cumulo-nimbus clouds, flowering cherry trees, tulips, leafy raspberry vines – What could be lovelier?

This Sunday was special for us, too, because our youngest son, 13-year old Seth, made his public profession of Christian faith, after successfully completing the membership class and being interviewed by the church elders. The fact that this was HIS desire, not some cultural dictate, means so much to me. May he grown in his love and devotion to the Lord!

Another blessing I called to mind was that all nine of our children are seeking to live to God’s glory. What a comfort and encouragement this is to their momma! Though Rick and I have worked hard (and enjoyed our kids a lot, too) we know that it is God who regenerates our children. This, too, is His gift.

It was a blessing to freely meet together to worship the Lord, and hear God’s Word preached twice today. The times of visiting with friends afterwards were also refreshing.

When we got home from church this afternoon, daughter Debra got ready to sort her medications. She could not find her most expensive and necessary medication, which I remembered picking up from the pharmacy. A phone call to the pharmacy confirmed this as fact. I began looking everywhere for those meds: in the car, in the van, throughout the house, even through the garbage. I thought maybe I had thrown away the little bag that the meds come in without taking out the bottle. I remembered that I had run errands for my mom on the day I picked up the meds, so I drove half an hour over to her place thinking perhaps I had left the bag there. Nope. You can imagine that I asked the Lord to help me remember, all the while thinking that I was truly going dingy.

I returned home after my search, still unable to think where those pills might be. I pulled out the box where we keep her meds, and there they were! Deb had somehow missed seeing them, panicked, and I had not thought to check the most obvious place. Whew! I am so thankful to the Lord. Even if we could have come up with the money to replace the medicine, I don’t think the pharmacy is allowed to refill a prescription that has just been filled.

I mustn’t forget to mention that today included time spent with married children and grandchildren, another blessing to this gramma. Diederick and Carly are just so funny (and fun).

One of our grown sons called this evening to tell us he is treating us to a Katie Melua concert this coming Saturday! I guess he knows I always have excuses for why I’m too busy to do things, so he just buys the tickets and tells me when the event will be, getting me out of my comfortable routine.

That son also told us he has been selected as the graduate of distinction from the Computer Science Department of Western Washington University for this year. Congratulations, Dearie! I thank the Lord for giving him a sound mind, and the willingness to work hard.

I conclude with a picture of a dandelion. I love these flowers, not only because they are bright and cheery, but also because they mean summer is on the way. I hope you have much for which to be thankful to the Lord, as well.