Monday, June 30, 2008

Bucket List and Link to a Giveaway

Have you heard of the movie "The Bucket List"? The premise is these guys make a list of things they want to do before they "kick the bucket" and then they set off to complete the list.

So I'm wondering, what are some things I want to do before I kick the bucket? I had to seriously think about this in December of 2006 because I almost kicked the bucket! And truthfully, there is nothing that I haven't done that I would be disappointed to miss out on before I go to heaven, but there are some things that would be nice to do.

1. Hold my granddaughter, Emma.
2. Visit Scotland.
3. Visit Germany.
4. Visit the East Coast. We've been to 37 states including every state in the contiguous 48 west of the Mississippi but we haven't seen the East Coast.
5. Spend a week in a secluded cabin with my Hero. Just us, no phones — maybe a hot tub (wink, wink.)
6. Write a book (I'll finish my BA in December and the main reason I went back to school was to hone my writing skills.)

Right now, that's all I can think of. I'm sure there are other things I should add to the list, but I will revisit this idea soon.

The Simple Woman, June 30

FOR TODAY, June 30

Outside my unbelievably beautiful weather. It is 77° with a slight breeze and a few puffy white clouds in an otherwise blue sky.

I am thinking...I am? Wow, I don't do that much with this silly menopause thing going on … I am thinking that I need to put my laundry away.

I am thankful for...God's mercy and long suffering. He is so good to me.

From the kitchen...ah, we are having sirloin for dinner. It was on sale!

I am creating...a pair of culottes to wear this weekend.

I am going...nowhere! Just enjoying my home today. Later this week, I am going to Kansas City but for now, just staying home.

I am wearing...the same comfortable blue denim dress I seem to wear every Monday! What a creature of habit I am!

I am reading...other people's blogs!

I am hoping...that my grandson's allergies clear up.

I am hearing...the quiet of my neighborhood. In the distance, I can hear the pound of a hammer on the house they are building in the next block.

Around the house...most things are caught up. I need to vaccuum and put the laundry away but that's about it.

One of my favorite things...the feel of my Hero's work-weathered hand against my cheek.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...we are headed to Kansas City on Thursday and will be visiting my family over the July 4th weekend. Then we are coming back late Saturday in time for church on Sunday!

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...
My granddaughter, 27 days old.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Some things get better with time

There are dishes that you prepare that are supposed to sit for a while before you eat them so that the flavors "marry." Pea salad is one of those dishes. I haven't made pea salad in almost ten years.

As with most things in my life, there's a story behind that little bit of information. My mom was a terrible cook. She could slaughter a box mix. Really. However, there were a few things that she could fix better than anyone. She could fling a mean hamburger. I still don't know what she did to them, but she made hamburgers better than anyone I know. She was also the queen of fudge-making. I've tried for years to use her recipe and get the same results, and sadly, I fall short. (My sister inherited the crown.) She could also just whip up a marvelous pea salad.

Shortly after she went home to heaven, my family was eating at a buffet and I was at the salad bar. I saw the pea salad and found myself standing in public with tears coursing down my cheeks. I would never have Mom's pea salad again. It sounds like such a little thing, but my heart was truly broken. I couldn't hardly eat anything the rest of the day. Time passed. One day several years later I was again at a buffet (hey, with six kids, you do what you can) and I saw the pea salad. This time, though it was bitter -sweet, I wanted some. I ate it quietly and thought of Mom.

Today, for the first time since before she died, I made pea salad. This time the memories that flooded my heart — memories of a woman who couldn't hardly boil water but could stir up a pea salad to die for — this time the memories made me smile.

Saturday, June 28, 2008


As I prepared to enter kindergarten at Mrs. Jaebker's Finishing School, this is what was happening in the world:

In China, Chairman Mao launched the cultural revolution. Anyone with an education became a suspected enemy of the state.

The United States Supreme Court ruled that poll taxes were unconstitutional.

MasterCard is born as Master Charge. Next year, Congress would hold hearings to debate the legality of credit cards.

IBM introduced single-cell Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM).

The first effective vaccine against Rubella (German Measles) was introduced.

The United States Congress voted to prohibit prayer in public schools.

The Supreme Court ruled in the Miranda case giving birth to the Miranda warning: "You have a right to remain silent. Anything you say can and will be used against you in a court of law. You have the right to the presence of an attorney to assist you prior to questioning, and to be with you during questioning if you so desire. If you cannot afford an attorney, you have the right to have an attorney appointed to you prior to questioning."

Friday, June 27, 2008

Memorizing Scripture

How much Scripture do you have committed to memory? When I was a child and a teenager, I memorized major passages: Isaiah 53, Psalm 1, Psalm 8, Psalm 37, I Corinthians 13, the book of James, John 1, John 3. (I know there are others, but I can't remember!!!) My brain was younger then, but I still love to memorize God's Word. I've been working on the book of Hebrews for a while. I have a few chapters memorized. I've also committed I Peter 2 to memory. It is so much easier for the Holy Spirit to communicate with me when He is able to remind me of verses that I have written on my heart.

How much Bible is written on your heart?

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Are there things that you know you will never understand?

This week marks what would have been the 26th birthday of our first child. He was an untimely birth, an infant who never saw light. (Job 3:16 Or as an hidden untimely birth I had not been; as infants which never saw light.) We really don't know if he was a "he" but we have always referred to him that way. We had been married for almost six months when we miscarried between 6-8 weeks. In the following years, we lost 9 more children to untimely births. Our youngest child would be six.

We have had the blessing of parenting six adopted children and I don't think I could love a biological child more than I love each and every one of our adopted kids.

But I still don't understand. I have accepted God's wisdom. But I don't understand.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I guess this is good

What Your Workspace Says About You

You are generally fairly organized, but you have occasional slip ups. You find keeping organized challenging.

You are hardworking and driven. You have an excellent work ethic.

You enjoy your job and don't feel guilty about how much time you spend working. You have a good balance between work and your personal life.

You don't switch careers often, and you intend to stay at your current job for a long time.

At work, you are an introvert. You don't like people coming around your work space.

Western Potato Rounds

This would be a great side dish for those 4th of July get-togethers!

2 large unpeeled baking potatoes (about 1 1/2 lb.)
Vegetable oil
1 C. (4 oz.) shredded Colby-Jack cheese
6 bacon slices, crisply cooked, drained and crumbled
1/3 C. green onion slices
1/4 C. barbecue sauce

Preheat oven to 450°F. Cut potatoes into 1/4-inch thick slices. Generously spray both sides of the potato slices with oil; spread on baking pan in one even layer. Bake 20 minutes or until lightly browned; remove from oven.

In bowl, combine cheese, bacon, and green onion. Generously brush potato slices with barbecue sauce; sprinkle with cheese mixture. Return potato slices to oven. Bake 3-5 minutes or until cheese is melted. Yields 24 rounds.

Tips: Leaving the peel on the potatoes will help keep the shape of the baked potato slices. The potato slices will cook more evenly when sliced to the same thickness.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Some incomplete thoughts on water

Water. One of the most common substances in our environment.

I took my Hero to work this morning and we pass through Davenport on the way. I saw all the areas along the way that were underwater last week and are now drying out as the Mississippi receeds into her banks. I thought about the power of water. Thousands of people spent thousands of hours trying to hold back the rain-swollen rivers and too many times, the rivers won. Days after the last raindrops have fallen, the earth is still saturated. And yet, in the southeastern United States, they still long for rain. The thirsty earth there cracks for want of moisture.

In all our technology, science, and wisdom, we cannot control the rain let alone the water cycle of which the rain is a part.

I thought about water in the Bible:

But whosoever drinketh of the water that I shall give him shall never thirst; but the water that I shall give him shall be in him a well of water springing up into everlasting life.
John 4:14

And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
Revelation 22:17

When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.
Isaiah 41:17-18

And he shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that bringeth forth his fruit in his season; his leaf also shall not wither; and whatsoever he doeth shall prosper.
Psalm 1:3

And our God controls this water:

Or who shut up the sea with doors, when it brake forth, as if it had issued out of the womb?
When I made the cloud the garment thereof, and thick darkness a swaddlingband for it,
And brake up for it my decreed place, and set bars and doors,
And said, Hitherto shalt thou come, but no further: and here shall thy proud waves be stayed?
Job 38:8-11

Just some things I'm thinking about today.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY June 23...

Outside My Window... there is still beautiful blue sky! The weather couldn't be nicer.

I am thinking... that I really have a lot to do today!

I am thankful for... my wonderful husband — my hero. He's just a great guy!

From the kitchen... it is time to buy groceries!

I am wearing... a comfy blue dress and my tennis shoes.

I am creating... a website for the church.

I am going... nowhere until this evening when I need to go to the grocery store.

I am reading... stuff about building a website.

I am hoping... to see my granddaughter soon.

I am hearing... talk radio.

Around the house... I need to scrub!

One of my favorite things... is sweet ice tea! especially when the condensation gathers on the outside of the glass.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week… I have some sewing to do for myself. I want to work some to get the driveway cleaned up from the rain and do some clearing in the backyard. I have some work I need to do on July's Bible reading schedule for the church.

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

Saturday, June 21, 2008

The floods in Iowa are receeding

The waters are moving downriver on their quest for the sea, the next stage in the never-ending water cycle. The media cameras have followed and are covering the scramble in Missouri to shore up the levees and move possessions to higher ground.

Left behind is mud — mud and the pieces of lives that will slowly but surely be put back together. I can't watch the news at night without hurting for those who have lost their earthly possessions but with one voice echo the thought that "we have our family, and that's what counts."

It is the people around us that ultimately matter. I wish we, as Americans, were more aware of that when we aren't facing disaster.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Ever Joyful: Chocoholics Rejoice

Okay, this is just wrong! Wrong because I don't have any chocolate chips in the house!! Wendy! Run to the store . . . .

Ever Joyful: Chocoholics Rejoice

Thursday, June 19, 2008

He is so funny!

Last night, Wendy had something to do so she got Elisha down for bed and left to run her errand. She had put him to bed earlier than normal so she was letting him watch a movie to get sleepy. (I know, good families never do such things, but what can I say?)

I went into the room to retrieve something and he asked for more milk in his sippy cup. I got it for him and got him situated. A few minutes later, I had to go back into the room and he was holding his eyes wide open with his hands.

I said, "Beau, don't do that! It's not good for your eyes."

His answer was, "This is the only way I can keep my eyes open to watch my movie!"

I had to leave the room quickly in order to laugh.

Just a picture

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

It's never a good thing

It's never a good thing when one of your kids calls and asks the question, "Mom, how many points are you allowed to accumulate on your driver's license in a year's time?" (Thankfully, they are all adults and not on my insurance!)

Wordless Wednesday: What is he thinking?


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Video of the flooding from the Quad Citites Times

More pictures of flooding: Davenport, IA June 2008

Here are more pictures I took in Davenport of the second flood of 2008. All of these were taken on Saturday, June 15. The Mississippi actually crested on Monday, June 17.

The cars in the background on this first picture would have been under water at the crest.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY June 16...

Outside My Window...
a breeze is blowing and there is blue sky! The rain is supposed to let up for at least a few days.

I am thinking...
about taking a trip somewhere … anywhere!

I am thankful for...
God's provision. He cares for me.

From the kitchen...
A big pot of pinto beans and fried potatoes with cornbread on the side for dinner!

I am wearing...
my favorite denim dress.

I am creating...
a quilt for my granddaughter.

I am going...
to pick Elisha up from Head Start, and my Hero from work.

I am reading...
a couple of books by Lois Lowry.

I am hoping...
to buy my Hero a chainsaw tomorrow.

I am hearing...
the birds chirping!

Around the house...
I need to do some deep cleaning in the kitchen.

One of my favorite things...
is fresh air! It is cool today and I have the door open.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week:
I need to seriously work on the church's website. I also need to buy some groceries.

Here is picture thought I am sharing...

A Good Man

I didn't post about Father's Day yesterday. I talked to my Daddy. He's doing well. The family spoke with my father-in-law. He has advanced Parkinson's but he's doing very well considering.

And I spent some time with my Hero. The man who is the father of our six children and Pops to our grandkids. Since the days when our first child was tiny, he has always been a good dad. The kids didn't always see it that way, but I did.

He got a bunch of phone calls and Wendy bought him a Cold Stone Cake. (I think she had ulterior motives!)

Now, he's still a good Dad and a great Pops, and as always, my Hero.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Flooding in Davenport, Iowa June 2008

The red line on the far right in the picture is the usual bank of the river.

Just a guess, but I think the trains will be running a little late today.

I didn't know the name "River Drive" was a literal term.

The name "Levee Gone" might be more appropriate.

Exit to where?

I think the detour signs are a bit unnecessary, don't you?

Aw, why not?!

Maybe Jetski parking!

Where's his snorkel?

And More Storms

Even amidst the inconvenience and even destruction of the recent storms in Iowa, the majesty of God's creation is evident.

All of these were taken on June 14, 2008.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

In Between Storms and Flooding

There have been times when the sun was actually shining and the flowers were beautiful. I try to go for at least a short walk everyday and take some pictures. I headed out Thursday without much hope, but found some pretty things.