Monday, December 29, 2008

Christmas recap

Got an email from my friend Rainy regarding the Meyer clan Christmas hoopla. I'd be more than happy to comply with her request and provide photos and insider information on the par-tay.

Rainy,you are so right when you say it seems like we always have a fun time together. I realise how blessed this makes us that we just enjoy being together.

Here is a picture of Janae and her new squeezy cheeked baby girl, Eliana. They are keeping their eye on all the yummers.

Adam and Becki Meyer and their two rascals, Isaac and Caleb. (Amy told me she wants Isaac for Christmas. Becki readily agreed. Hmmm.)

Here are a bunch of the guys chuckling over our newest member, Malachi Meyer. We loves our babies!

Three girlies that I adore to pieces. Kaitlyn, Ashley and LummaLoo Amy.

Winner of the best Christmas shoes! No doubt. They are bright red underneath. As cute as the feet that are in them! (Amy)

Hark! Angels appeared and we were blessed by Christmas carols they sweetly sang to us. And we didn't even have to watch sheep out in the cold!

Christmas chaos.

Hollie and Macie Meyer.

Rachel recently agreed to join our family by becoming engaged to our Andrew. Our family just keeps growing. Welcome, Rachel!

Look at all these young people. Celebrations are so much fun with all these guys.

Two Aunties with babies. Reader Brenda is the pretty one. I'm the smart, kind-hearted one.
Eliana and Malachi are the real babes, though.

This is just plain fun. And funny. Hollie "Mary" Meyer and her husband Luke "Joseph" Meyer reading us a paraphrased version of the Christmas story. Hollie can't see worth a hoot and so borrowed Eric "the Shepherd's" glasses. Which seemed to make things worse for poor, blind Mary. She stumbled through her reading. Luke didn't help as he thought reading in a Middle Eastern accent would heighten the entertainment value of the Christmas story. When his accent slid into Latino territory and then just stayed there, we all died laughing. It was hysterical, amigas. Seriously funny. (Cheila and Renick are supposed to be wisemen. Yes, Renick scares me,too.)

It was almost as funny as the following little scenario. Here's the back story: We all knew we wanted to do some sort of Christmas "program". But some family members voiced some concern about putting others on the spot, say, if we were to go around the room and ask everyone about the best present they ever gave, or something similar.
Not everyone likes to be the center of attention. In fact, they run away from it with as much panic as if a pack of rabid cocker spaniels were chasing them down.
So, rather than focus on family members, Tambry got the brilliant idea of focusing all our attention on the NON-family members present that evening. Our guests.
Here is where she brought them all up to be questioned, poked and prodded. Have you ever seen a more relaxed looking group? NOT!
I'm sure our guests were grasping the true meaning of the Spanish Inquisition Christmas spirit and can't wait to return next year when we will probably have a pirate theme and make them all walk the plank. Which a few of them would look forward to more than being grilled by the Meyer clan.

Matt and Janae Meyer Wolf and sweet baby Eliana who is showing that she is indeed Number One.

Cousins Macie and Caleb playing with new toys. Okay, Macie is probably trying to grab it away from Caleb, but it is a still photo and we can pretend they are playing nice.

All in all, it was a fun celebration. Being a part of this family is getting better all the time. As we looked around and saw all the young people, young married families, and oh my goodness, all the roundy-eyed babies, we are grateful and excited to be here. Right where God put us.
Thank you, Lord.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Christmastime Feasting

The weather outside is frightful and has stopped my wogging in its tracks. So when my friend sent me this email it is as though a glorious light shone all around and the universe made perfect sense once again.

I will embrace this plan.

1. AVOID carrot sticks. Anyone who puts carrots on a holiday buffet table knows nothing of the Christmas spirit. If you see carrots, leave immediately, go next door where they're serving rum balls.

2. Drink as much eggnog as you can. And quickly. It's rare. You can't get it any other time of year; who cares if it has 10,000 calories in every sip? It's not like you're gonna turn into an eggnog alcoholic or something! It's a treat! Enjoy it! It's Christmas!!

3. If something comes with gravy, use it. That's the whole point of gravy. Gravy does not stand alone. Pour it on! Make a volcano out of your mashed potatoes (or stuffing), fill it with gravy. Eat the volcano! Repeat.

4. As for mashed potatoes, always ask if they're made with skim milk or whole. If it's skim, pass. Why bother? It's like buying a sports car with an automatic transmission!

5. Do not have a snack before going to a party in an effort to control your eating. The whole point of going to a Christmas party is to eat other people's food for free. And lots of it. Hello??

6. Under NO circumstances should you exercise between now and New Year's! You can do that in January when you have nothing else to do. This is the time for long naps, which you'll need after circling the buffet carrying a 10 lb. plate of food and a vat of eggnog!

7. If you come across something really good at the buffet table, like frosted Christmas cookies, position yourself near them, and don't budge. Eat as many as you can before becoming the center of attention. If you leave them behind, you'll never see them again.

8. Same for pies. Apple. Pumpkin. Pecan. Mincemeat. Have a slice of each. Or mix it up, but have more than one! When else do you get more than one dessert? Labor Day?

9. Did someone mention fruitcake? Granted it's loaded with the mandatory calories, but avoid it at all costs! I mean, have some standards!

10. ONE FINAL TIP: If you don't feel terrible when you leave the party or get up from the table, you haven't been paying attention! Re-read these tips, but hurry! January is just around the corner!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Lucy, you got some 'plainin' to do

Maybe you've noticed that I'm not Lucy (but I do Love Lucy), and I don't have 'splainin' to do, but 'plainin.'

As in "complaining."

Snow falling from the sky is pretty.

Snow that makes it difficult to live my life? Not so much.

We have around 3 feet. Of snow.

This amount of snowage buries your vehicles, knocks out your power, which then freezes your water pipes. The horses still need food and water, which now must be hauled from the creek. In buckets. Through snow drifts so deep I can't see my big dogs in them. This is getting to be hard work.

I can't make cookies, or wash anything, or make coffee. I know. COFFEE. (I'll leave the memorial service details at the end of the blog.)

And do you have any idea how many cords of wood I hefted into the house in the last few days?

Also, I may be hormonally challenged today. Good timing, don't ya think? Just sayin'.

I was supposed to get my hair done today but had to cancel that appointment and now my shaggy hair keeps hanging in my eyes and face and until I want to scream.

Bad hair does happen to good people.

I haven't been taking this trial in stride. Not even close. I'm sure I'm a doll to be around. Just ask Rod. Or pray for him. That would be appreciated.

I haven't been turning to the Father who loves me and replenishing my quickly dwindling supply of peace, joy, patience, grace or love.

I've been letting the snow win.

So I give up.

I give up our electricity. I give up my idea of my Christmas celebration and the worries of traveling to relatives homes. Big sigh of relief. These are not my worries after all. I'd just forgotten.

Back to the foot of the cross to lay it all down again, and in return replenish my dwindling supply of peace. Joy. Patience. Grace. Love. Jesus.

What a deal.
I am more than thankful.

Merry Christmas, all.

(added: Power is back on, pipes are fixed. I love LIGHTS!)

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Do you see what I see?

If you look at my pictures here, you will. We are in the middle of what our local media is calling "The Arctic Blast of 2008."

I call it "Winter".

It gets cold up here in the mountains, so we are keeping our wood stove stocked which means lots of chopping wood (for Rod) and lots of hauling wood (for me.)

The pipes in the barn froze, probably around the same time the temperature dipped to 7, so we have been hauling warm water out to the horses. That's lots of fun. Really. Lots of fun. Here is our new mare Duchess, who looks like a fuzzy bunny right now. A bunny with four hooves and a penchant for whinnying. Cute, right?

Here is Pa Ingalls getting ready for a walk with me and the dogs this morning. Notice the jeans and flannel shirt. This is the SAME THING he wore last spring when we began wogging together. What is up with this?

P.S. Yes, he does have a ski coat, pants and boots.

Here is Ma Ingalls. The New and Improved model. She can haul water and wood while wearing her Columbia Omni-Tech 3-in-1 parka and ski pants as well as her Columbia Titanium snow boots.

HA! I laugh at the snow and cold.

And at Pa Ingalls who thinks he'll stay warm in his Wrangler jeans. Cotton flannel runs away and cries at the snow and cold we've been experiencing this week.


Can you say "hypothermia?"

I can.

I can also say "hot chocolate" which is sounding just about perfect right now.
Hope you are all enjoying all the moments of your Christmas season where ever you are.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


I thought for a second or two about not posting this video that my pal Randy sent me yesterday.

Right now, in the middle of the Christmas season, it didn't seem appropriate somehow. I want to think happy thoughts about reindeer and wrapped presents and SNOW!

Then I realized the truths in this video tie in with the Christmas season perfectly. Better than my decorations and cookies can do.

I don't want to fill my mind with visions of sugar plums and figgy puddings at the expense of the truth and the things that really matter. Know what I mean?

And because he came as

a Jew

a servant

a baby.

Go, click on this link and watch the video. It's important.

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them,

"Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger."
Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

"Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace to men on whom his favor rests."

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

A Giant Pot 'O' Pancake Soup

I've got troubles. Big troubles.

I made a turkey Monday night with all most a couple of the trimmings. But the crowning touch on this bad boy was that I laid nice fat slices of bacon across the turkey and then basted the whole masterpiece with pure Vermont maple syrup (or SIR-UP, as Reader Brenda likes to enunciate) every 30 minutes while it roasted.
I know, right?
Yes, it smelled divine and tasted great, too. Salty-sugary heaven. Just call me Diana Deen. Or Butter-Girl. Or Zocor-Woman. Yeah, that.

Fast forward to today. Soup sounds good. Think I'll use the leftover turkey.

I chop up veggies, the leftover turkey meat and the juices from the turkey that I saved.Sprinkled seasonings. Made a huge pot of soup. This should last for days.

I let it simmer for a while before I tasted it.

As you probably figured out before I did, our soup kinda tastes like breakfast. It tastes like we were pretty liberal in our use of the MAPLE SYRUP from VERMONT.

It is making me gag. And tear up a little bit.

But Rod came home a minute ago and I guess I had hoped he wouldn't notice. Yes, that is what I hoped. I fed him raw meat in a tortilla once(it was an ACCIDENT!) and he didn't notice until I mentioned he had dog-breath. I've done lots of stuff that he didn't notice. I hoped this was one of those times.
Now I wish I would have had the camera ready when he tasted our Breakfast Maple Turkey Vegetable Soup. Breakfast in a bowl. With vegetables and turkey. And syrup. Yummy.

He noticed.

So, any ideas? Any help? I put in turkey gravy mix and sage and more salt.

I prayed. This was going to be dinner for TWO DAYS people.

P.S. If anyone wants to come over, no need to bring dinner items. Or dessert.

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Why so glum?

We were told by our unreliable weather people that we wouldn't be getting quite so much rain today. Judging by the cows and other farm animals drifting by in the currant, they were WRONG.

Chopper is not amused. He was rather glum as he looks forward to runs on the wooded trails, not dog-paddles across flooded areas.

Because it is a soggy Sunday, I may have spent more than a little bit of time on the interweb looking up little known factoids to entertain you, the masses Reader Brenda with.

As I was perusing the pet section of Craigslist (WARNING! WARNING! STAY AWAY FROM THE PET SECTION OF CRAIGSLIST!!) I was muttering under my breath about the abysmal regard people seem to have for spelling. I am no perfectionist, not even close, but the mistakes seen here often make it difficult to even understand what they are trying to communicate. Take the title of this ad:

"Dog pasted away"

Was it a horrible Elmer's glue accident?

Could the dog have been a closet scrap-booker?

I read the whole ad, and to be honest, I'm still not sure what happened here, if the dog passed away, or wasted away. But, regardless, I went away.

Next, I found this ad:

"guini pig with cage and fairy costume - $10 "

I didn't even care about the misspelling at this point, or the fact that I abhor rodents of every size and shape.

I was intrigued with the idea of someone wrestling a costume onto their Guinea pig. Seriously...I am making little choking, hacking noises right now. But here is the rest of the ad:

"Give the gift of a rodent this christmas! She looks adorable in her fairy costume! She comes with her cage, extra food, ect. If you want, you can even have her fold-up play pen. I'm moving and she can't come. She has shiny black hair. She's a year and a half old. She's a good girl and will let you hold her, especially if you feed her a carrot stick. NOT AVAILABLE UNTIL DECEMBER 23RD, which works great if you want to give her as a Christmas present. We want her with us for our Christmas celebration, which is on the 22nd. "

Are you screaming, too?

Give the gift of a rodent? Nothing says Christmas like beady little eyes and bubonic plague, I suppose.

I would move away, far, far away and not only not let her come, but not leave a forwarding address. OR a cell phone number. Just in case. If she wears a costume, she might be able to dial a phone.

Shiny, black hair on a PERSON is nice. On a rodent? Not so much. In fact, pretty creepy.

They want her with them for their Christmas celebration? Are they doing a Nativity play? With their Guinea pig in her fairy costume? Are they afraid her new "forever family" won't let her be a part of their Christmas festivities or sit on Santa's lap for the picture?

Unfortunately, this ad did not come with a photo, but because I care about you, I did a search and came up with a couple Guinea pig pictures. Not in fairy costumes, though. But still, enjoyable.

I'm a giver. Merry Christmas.

FYI...There is a Guinea Pig Festival in Peru where they spend all year making cute costumes for their pet Guinea pigs(Look at that poor little girl in the picture above. Grandma is forcing her, saying "Give Pedro a kiss, dear.")

The townspeople dote on their pets, hoping for a prize in the festival....pampering them...fattening them up...

...because then they are apparently tasty little buggers, too. Seriously. They eat them.

Anyway, I need to go tell Rod my idea for our next adventure-vacay.

Oh...and you're welcome. :-)

Thursday, December 4, 2008


Just finished watching the latest installment of Top Chef which I recorded yesterday because HELLO. I fall asleep around the time the sun goes down. Which is unfortunate as sunset is at 4:27 pm for the next three weeks, according to the local meteorologist.

While I watched Top Chef, I did six sets of leg (butt) lifts. Ouch!

Then I whipped out six sets of ab crunches. (Underneath my Costco-muffin-top are abs of STEEL.You'll just have to trust me on this.)

Finally, I cranked out 3 excruciating sets of push-ups. (yep, they are the knee ones) But my arms are still shaking as I type this. No upper body strength what so ever. My arms are like noodles, I swear.

When I was finished, I hauled myself right over to the island in the kitchen and plowed down three honkin' chocolate oatmeal raisin cookies.

*****DANGER !!!DANGER!!!*****
Do NOT watch cooking shows while working out!!

Lesson learned, grasshopper.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I almost wish I had been a leper

Leprosy (n) a chronic infectious disease affecting the skin and peripheral nerves which causes loss of sensation, paralysis and deformities.

I think I may have had something like this condition for about a decade and didn't even know it. An actual medical professional didn't diagnose me, but as I look back on my symptoms I'm pretty sure this is what it was.

It began innocuously enough. With a small spot of anger at someone that totally deserved it.Seriously. You can ask anyone that was there. It was justified.

Because I was right in my anger, I held on to it. To be honest, I didn't feel it growing. But it did. It's claws dug into my heart and mind until I couldn't put it down even if I had wanted to.

So I tried to ignore it instead.

Memories surrounding this relative who had rejected me, shamed me and humiliated me when she should have loved and protected me started out painful and became numb. Kind of like a leper whose nerve endings are damaged.

When other people mentioned their close, happy relationships with their certain relatives, stinging pain would strike, unless I shut it down with my practiced numbing techniques. I tried hard to keep my emotions in a deep freeze.

I began searching out replacements for this person who I felt had rejected me so terribly in the past, hoping for and settling for scraps from others who already had complete families and weren't searching for more. Like I was. I was trying to make myself feel better with substitutes.

If this relative was going to be at a family function that I would be at, I froze in fear and then reacted by running and hiding. Or I acted as though I were above it all; as though white hot hatred weren't bubbling just below the surface, lava-like, waiting to explode. With a plastic smile on my face I tried to pretend like I didn't want to scream "How could you?!" or "Why?!"

Sounds healthy, right?

Many times I have rejected people before they could reject me. This anger I carried was deforming how God meant for me to be.

Years have gone by. I have taught bible studies which have included chapters on letting go of anger and bitterness. (I tried....really.) Also, chapters on forgiveness. (I didn't stick, I guess.)

One week ago today,I going through my study of "When I Lay My Isaac Down" by Carol Kent God was gently nudging softly making me aware holding my feet to the flames so I knew it was time to lay this down.

So I did. My girls prayed over me and I snuffled, sniffed and prayed too. And I did the ugly cry. U.G.L.Y.

But I laid this heavy, ugly burden down because I don't want to carry it around anymore. God has forgiven me! I want to forgive. God gave me grace! I want to extend grace. I am tired of having this place in me that is not His place. Please take it from me.

Later that day, I was spent and exhausted. Imagine that.

Something brought this person to my mind. I felt no pain in the memory. Hmmm. I went further. Another memory. Again no pain. But no numbness, either. What was this?

I jumped full on into my sea of ugly. I visited them all. I touched on everything. I felt nothing. Wait, not nothing. I felt....comforted. Soothed. Held. He was with me in my place.

Universe away from numb.

I left the past and moved to the potential future. I began weeping when I realized....I could call this person...I could visit this person....I could talk to this person! I can and do pray for this person!

I am free! God has healed me from my disease!

Do you know how completely weird it is to have lived with a thing for so long and to have the Lord remove it from you? I cannot explain this except to say, I almost wish I had been a leper, so I could show you and shout, "Look! My spots! They are GONE!"

I must be honest here and mention that I did wake up periodically throughout that first night, then in the morning and check myself with the memories. Just to see if it was still true. If I was still clean.

But I bet the lepers that Jesus healed checked in the morning to see if their skin was still clean, too. Just sayin'.

Psalm 103 1-5

Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from death and crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!

1Peter 2 9-10

But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.
“Once you had no identity as a people; now you are God’s people.Once you received no mercy; now you have received God’s mercy.”

Friday, November 21, 2008

Letter to my son's girlfriend's parents

Dear Chad and Jody,
It was so good to meet you both last night.

But I feel I must apologize.

We find we are just so happy to have Josiah's girlfriend, Ashley moving in with our daughter Amy. She has become a part of all our lives in a short time and so we find ourselves overcompensating for our weaknesses and shortcomings.

Last night's dinner was supposed to be at our house, but our kitchen cupboards are still laying all around the house contributing to the general feeling of disarray. (And no, Caroline, duct tape WILL NOT hold them on for any length of time and that IS NOT a design statement I want to make.)

So we invited you to Plan B: a noisy, smoky Mexican restaurant where the waiters kept plunking beaded, glittery sombreros on customers' heads and bursting into a maniacal version of a Spanish Happy Birthday song. We were scared, too.

Seriously. How many times did they sing that song last night? How many people actually celebrated their birthday at LaCarretta in Gresham last night? A dozen? Two?

I'm sorry that you had to fear for your life when the waiters came swinging through with their sizzling platters of Fajitas. No stray ember or flaming bits of pork singed your hair, Jody. I checked.

I'm sorry for allowing Chantry and Renick, (Josiah's young cousins) to welcome Ashley to Oregon with their litany of Blond jokes. Did you notice that they are always the "brown-head's" of the jokes and seem to come out in a much better light than the blonds?Yes we, did too.

I am so sorry if Amy offended Ashley by "staking a claim" on Aunt Brenda with her hugs and PDA's when they came by the table. She was just making sure that there will be no rift in their relationship when another sweet, blond shorty spends time in the 'hood.

I apologize that for the look of shock and dismay on my face when Ashley mentioned my "Steve Madden" shoes that I wore to a wedding last summer. Excuse me, but those are exquisite Ann Taylor shoes, Ashley.

I think I recovered quite nicely though. You can still borrow them. See, I can forgive almost anything.

I so apologize for offending you when, after seeing Ashley's new closet at Amy's house, Rod told everyone at the table that it looked like Ashley worked at a clothing store AND THEN ROBBED THEM. I'm sorry we laughed so hard about it.
We know she didn't steal anything. Really. She just likes loves lives for clothing. We get that.

I apologize for trying to make a good first impression. And by that, I mean a false impression. Deceitful, even.
You know that little welcome bag of Oregon treats and tidbits I put together for Ash to make her feel wanted, welcome and less homesick? Well, I completely stole that idea from a friend/family member. (thanks, Rainy)
Wow. Didn't know how great it would feel to be looked upon as thoughtful and creative for the first time in my life.
So nice. Wrong, but nice.

If I wasn't trying to make a positive first impression AND make Ashley feel welcomed, I never would have attempted the cute Oregon welcome bag, with the Douglas Fir bough complete with pine cones AND the printed legend of the fox and the mouse. (honestly, wasn't it adorable?)

No, I would have brought you all home, rummaged through the door less cupboards for some grub, parked myself on the most comfortable spot on the sofa and stared silently just hoping one of you knew how to make coffee and would offer me some because my head still hurt.
That is how I really roll.
When I am not attempting to be someone else and make a good first impression.
So I apologize.

Mostly, we apologize for "stealing" your daughter away to another state like this, especially with Thanksgiving next week.

Chad, I'm sorry that Ashley introduced you to us as her "Dad." This was obviously as huge mistake and should never be repeated in our presence. You are and always will be, her Daddy.
We won't let her forget again.

I'm sorry I showed so much excitement that she had arrived, when I know you must have been having a tough time of it.

But here is the deal that makes it all worth it to me.
The look on my son's face. I don't see that look too often.
Here he is on Christmas morning when he was four or five. Granted, he was opening clothes, and he doesn't like or appreciate clothes like Ashley does. :-)

I'm not gonna try to describe what his face looked like when he opened his first Nintendo console when he was nine or so. I'll just say this is the closest it has come:

You guys raised a great daughter and we are blessed to have her here amongst our family. We'll take good care of her.
Diane and Rod

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I didn't know what I was missing

This year a couple of friends and I decided to form a bible study/accountability group. There are just three of us and we know each other well. You all know one of these women as My Reader Brenda. The Other Woman (that sounds so ominous) is Jen, and I am wishing I had a picture of them to put up here right now. Ahhhh, I have one.

I should have done this smaller group thing YEARS AGO. This is good stuff.

These two women speak truth into my life. Do you even know how important that is? It is like when I can't see out of the forest, they can see which direction I should go and give me scripture to guide my steps.

In a larger group, I have found that you tend to be....well, more polite. In our small group, we cut to the chase.

Because we all know each other that well, and love each other no matter what.

Have you noticed I am blessed by these women in this group?

We pray, cry, laugh, talk, read, study,encourage,uplift,point each other in the right direction and saw moulding together. Doesn't every small group?

(This is Bren and Jen at an actual wedding...not at our Wedding at Cana bible study)

I used to think I could stay up on my mountain with only my man and my dogs for company, wogging with Jesus every day. But He has given me more than that.

Thanks, my friends. See ya Tuesday. Oh, and it is not very fair that I post a picture of you and not one of myself, too.
Here is my most recent photo as I pray for you and your partying ways.

Ecclesiastes 4:12
Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Proverbs 25 :12
To one who listens, valid criticism is like a gold earring or other gold jewelry.

Monday, November 17, 2008

Random thoughts in no particular order

I believe that is the actual meaning of particular order.

What an attention grabber that title is.

Woo! Some publishing company, or whoever writes titles for books, should snatch me up quick. I'm witty. And quite knowledgeable, obviously.

I haven't written for awhile so to break back into the blogging I came up with this following post:

Random thoughts from this morning. In no particular order. Fascinating. Really.

While I was jogging +walking =wogging: I sure hope no one buys this vacant house. I really enjoy jogging on their property and if someone lives here, they might kick me off. That could get ugly.

Still while wogging: Boy, if a bear attacked me right now, I kinda wished someone lived closer, like in that vacant house so they could come help me when they heard my screams for help. Kind of the classic catch-22. What ever that even means.

Still wogging: I wonder if my Reader Brenda is wogging right now. I should go faster. Or wog further. I should feel some sort of wogging competition well up within me...


Still wogging: my ipod "songs for running" folder is maybe a little too random as I go from these lyrics: "Oh what I would do to have the kind of faith to climb out of this boat I'm in, and into the crashing step out of my comfort zone into the realm of the unknown where Jesus is, and He's holding out His hands...etc.

To these lyrics:

"I need you,Boo....I gotta see you Boo... and the hearts all over the world tonight...said the hearts all over the world tonight...Hey Little Mama,ooh you're a stunner....etc..."

Both of these are wog-worthy. But still. I should organize.

While showering after wogging: gee this is really minty fresh conditioner! Hope it isn't mouth wash. Hope it works. Hope my hair stops falling out.

Looking at hundreds 27 half painted cupboard doors laying strewn around the house as though "Trading Spaces" had exploded here during the weekend: Gosh, I hope those hinges get here today so we can install these doors BEFORE we meet Josiah's girlfriend's parents for the FIRST time HERE Wednesday night. That would be rather awkward for me as I try to convince myself that it doesn't doesn't just doesn't matter...

(Here is our dining room table, covered by a few newly painted cupboard doors. The color is called "Mission Tile" not "Bozo's Hair: The Early Years.")

Still looking: Wonder if I can cover up that enamel paint smell with a nice,warm Chicken Tortilla Soup?
Dare I hope that Ashley's parents are handy with a paint brush and screwdriver?

Thanks for visiting. I'll be back soon. Promise.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

May the Road Rise Up to Meet Ye

In this case, it is an Irish curse, not a blessing. I have a bonny condition known as Vestibular neuronitis which causes the lovely and abrupt onset of vertigo.

What is vertigo, you ask?

It is like you are riding a cool roller-coaster ride all the time. Without having to pay for it. And without the actual coaster. Or the fun.

It is when you walk about as if you have been drinking again.

It feels as though the spinning, it JUST WON'T STOP.

Please, road, stop all the rising up to greet me. Just stay where you are.

Rolling waves of nausea. They also rise up to greet me.

I always knew I hated sailing.

Dr. Grise just says to lay in bed with my eyes closed until it resolves itself. This has been since Thursday and although they are not quite ready to read a book or all my back log of blogs yet, my eyes are ready to be open.

Good things:

*I saved.

While Rod has been out hunting these last ten days, I should have been doing the female equivalent and been shopping. This is what I do.

*And I change decor. (I really use that term "decor" loosely. Ask my Reader Brenda.) But I think I finally figured out what color to paint my kitchen cabinets after really studying the Terra cotta tiles very closely. For about an hour. While I couldn't move.

*Rod will be home soon. Today!
*This incident gave my sis-in-law Tam a chance to drop a few incidents, showcasing the differences in our lives. Like this one:
Tam:Oh, this reminds of that time when I had altitude sickness from mountain climbing. Boy, was I sick!"
Me: retch-groan...
Tam:No, on second thought, this is more like when we were moving from one African country to another and I couldn't help because I was so dizzy. No doctor could pinpoint exactly what the problem was. They ran test after test...
Me: groan-whine-retch
Tam: No, wait! This totally reminds me of that time when we were rafting down the Nile River and I....
Okay, I added that last one in, but Tam would have added it if she could have figured out a way to seamlessly segue. Notice how she contracts glamorous conditions in exotic locals and I have a glorified pimple in my ear while laying on our StainMaster polymer? What is up with that?
Did I mention she is going to Switzerland in January? Gee, I hope she doesn't break a leg. Although, it would be a great story to use against me later. :-)

*I know that there is an end in sight. This made me empathize with my mother in law who is house bound, and in pain every day. The phone calls of encouragement meant so much to me, as did the warm meal that my wonderful niece made. My son and daughter who rushed up to make sure I was alive....or put their name's on things they wanted after I'm gone. Well. Whatever.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Words get in the way

There are several reasons fall is my favorite season. Pumpkin Spice Latte only being one of them. Beauty that defies description being another.

Look, God let me feel like a professional a content amateur photographer, capturing all the pretty at my mother and father-in-law's house the other day.

Are you enjoying the season where you are? What are your favorite aspects of fall?

Monday, October 27, 2008

Do Not Respond to Emails While Under the Influence

I'm sure you all totally agree with that title and would never in a million years do something like that, right? Especially to a COMPLETE and TOTAL STRANGER, right?
Yeah, me neither.
But, for argument's sake, say you got one of those nasty migraines that lasts all night Thursday night. Then, as you are still suffering the effects, ANOTHER migraine starts creeping in. What do you do? If you're me, you grab the phone while you still can and dial Dr, Grise who rushes you (or is it me...?) in and gives me (us?) a big ol' shot of Demerol.
Within a half an hour I am floating, and pointing out to Rod, that it didn't even hurt when I fell down on in front of the house and look how SOFT the pillow is and HOW HAPPY I AM THAT THE MIGRAINE IS GONE and I SURE LOVE THAT DR.GRISE,DON'T YOU? I may have yelled all of that. A happy yell.
Rod had to keep sending me back to bed because I wanted to stay awake and enjoy the effects of this magical drug.
I'm sorry if I offend, I'm just saying. No Pain. Magical. Happy.
After I had slept for about 234 hours, I woke up and decided I'd read email.
A happy surprise awaited me in the form of an email from a gal who lives in a distant state whose husband studies long distance with our own Western Seminary. Well, apparently, this delightful gal and her husband are praying and seeking God's wisdom on the possibility of them perhaps putting down roots here in our beautiful state.
Well, Wahoo!

When I began to type back I figured out I couldn't string words together real good, and my spelling was bad. Worse than normal.
So I decided I should just send her a quick note to tell her that I would really respond to her later...when I could make sense. Because I'm all about making sense.

Then I thought I should get my sister-in-law Brenda involved because I always ask her for help when my brain won't work. Which is pretty much M-F. (She needs weekends off, apparently)
So, here is the actual note I sent to this poor pastor's wife who just had a few questions about Oregon:

Oh, boy I really want to respond because email made you sound exactly like the sort of person I personally would want to live here in Oregon with me. Then I thought, oh no, I am still way under the effects of a huge ol' shot of Demerol of Doc Grise gave me yesterday, I shouldn't be reading emails, let alone responding...I'll send it to my sis in law. It seemed like a good idea at the time. I sent it, then remembered she is on lots of vicidin from getting rear ended while she was in her mini-cooper Friday night, she will be no help.
If you read this, you would never want to move here at all. You would pick someplace like Iceland maybe. I should probably just stop typing and go back to bed because I have to keep typing words over and over again. Lots of misspellings.
You know, I will just respond when I can think clearly, so just disregard and delete this whole email for now.
thank you,

Wow. Don't you think they are going to pack right up to move here? Yeah, me too.
They should make me an ambassador somewhere.

Well, I'm gonna go get some tequila now so I can catch up on some blogs. Apparently, that is how I roll.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I wish I were watching t.v.

I want to watch t.v., channel surf, eat fried whatever dipped in ranch and have my mind and heart muffled.
But I can't.
I read a post tonight that has me wanting to run away, not look, not think, and not hurt.

Not remember.

I am so tired of this election.

But I am weary and heartsick of children dying everyday because of abortion.

There. I've lost my readers.

You don't want to think about it either. Maybe you don't want to remember.

I know. It hurts. It can destroy us if we let it. We can numb ourselves with food, drugs, meaningless sex, blogging, anger, channel surfing or exercise. Whatever makes us turn away, keep moving and just not think. Not remember.
But if we don't talk about it, it will go on. And on. And on. We should really warn people.
I don't know about you, but I would do anything if God would answer my prayer and just let me go back to that time and that place.

I can almost see myself putting my hand on that door handle and walking through the door. Please, please, turn around.

I see myself being led to the back. Please, don't follow.

I can see myself in the back room and being helped onto the table. Get up and just run.

In my dreams, I leave and don't have the abortion. Do you even know how badly I wish that was what happened?
The truth was, I didn't leave for an hour. My baby never left. My baby died that day in the clinic because I chose to "not be pregnant" , a doctor chose to perform an abortion on a girl who paid him his fee and a country has vehemently decided that this is my right to have my own child put to death.

My children's sibling. They would have been delighted to have an older brother/sister.

My brother and sisters niece/nephew. Children are always loved celebrated in our family.

My husband's child. He would have loved you so much.

My baby, my baby. What have I done? My tears and grieving are not enough to bring you back.

I know that Jesus died on the cross in payment for my sins.
Even this.
I know, beyond any doubt, that I will be reunited with my child in Heaven one day.
But right now, I remember that time and that decision and am just ripped apart.I cry thinking of who my baby might have been and I am so completely destroyed over what I did. I am so very,very sorry.

I apologize that this is not my usual light and funny post.I don't want to think about the "issues" anymore either. I get it.

But I just had to say something as we head into this election where one candidate believes it should be a woman's choice whether or not she kills her own child for any reason what-so-ever.

Of course he would never be so crass as to word it like that.
But I will. Because that is what I did.

All my wishing and praying doesn't change a thing.
I am absolutely haunted by my choice.
And I can't change the channel enough times to make me forget.

When I refused to confess my sin, my body wasted away,
and I groaned all day long. Day and night your hand of discipline was heavy on me. My strength evaporated like water in the summer heat.
Finally, I confessed all my sins to you and stopped trying to hide my guilt. I said to myself, “I will confess my rebellion to the Lord.”
And you forgave me! All my guilt is gone.
Therefore, let all the godly pray to you while there is still time, that they may not drown in the floodwaters of judgment. Psalm 32:3-7

Monday, October 20, 2008

Because Every Sip Matters

You know how I like to start my mornings?You betcha. A nice, hot, aromatic cup of coffee.
And what if me drinking this said cup of coffee helped a country like Burundi combat hunger and disease?

Can I get a woo to the hoo?

(It is WFMW(works for me Wednesday)and you can find lots of tips for what works for everyone at this link. There are some awesome ideas there! Join the fun and add your own link, if you want.)

Even though Heaven knows I've tried, I personally cannot possibly drink enough coffee to help the entire country,so I am hoping that some of you will join in my fun and help support World Relief by buying a bag or two or 27.

I received the email below from my brother-in-law Dan Brose, one of our family's original "Outlaws" and known to thousands the world over simply as "Grand Poobah of World Relief in Africa and Everywhere Else." That is not his real title, but his actual title is so intimidating that none of us will ever speak to him again if we think about it. But Dan knows firsthand what he is talking about when he asks for help for the lovely people of Burundi.

FYI, we ordered our coffee from the website (awesome website, by the way) and received it quickly. To be honest, I didn't expect the coffee to taste that great because , let's face it, I am a coffee snob. To my utter surprise we L.O.V.E. the "Dancing Child" blend and I can see my coffee addiction going to dangerous levels because of it.
Excellent stuff.
Love in a mug.
It is that good, people.

So, if you're a coffee drinker, and I KNOW you are, consider skipping on over (you're skipping because of the high caffeine levels in your blood) and ordering some of this fine beverage.

It's the least we can do, dontcha think?
Because every sip CAN matter.

"Hello ,
In Burundi malaria and malnutrition kill more than 23% of all children before they reach the age of five!
World Relief is working hard to saturate a community of 243,000 people in central Burundi with simple health messages to prevent these senseless deaths. Volunteers are taught health lessons every two weeks, and they pass along the life-saving information to their neighbors. Due to a generous matching grant, your gift will be matched three times by another donor!
Please join MyCauze in this effort to raise $50,000.00 for "Save the children of Burundi" by Dec 6 2008 .

You can help by making a simple change in your coffee consumption. Just follow the Web link in this e-mail to purchase award-winning Cauzal Coffee. Thirty-three percent of your purchase price will go directly to "Save the children of Burundi"! You will receive an order confirmation by e-mail and Cauzal will notify me of your support.
(And if you’re wondering how good this coffee really is, you’ll be happy to know that Cauzal Coffee’s roaster has been among the top two for Roast Magazine’s prestigious "Roaster of the Year" award two years in a row!)
Click here to visit my customized Coffee Shop page and order Cauzal Coffee now:
Thank you so much for supporting MyCauze.
Daniel Brose and The Cauzal Care Team

Thursday, October 16, 2008

So not cool

I read a great post this morning on my friend Randy's blog about how he doesn't get to "be cool" this coming election. (Seriously, could this election be any loooooonger?)
I don't get to be cool either, darn it.
But I do get to do the right thing, which pretty much makes up for my total lack of coolness.
Please go read Randy's blog today. Send it on to others to read. Join the non-cool movement.
Tell me, or him,what you think.
Be un-cool. Just for the election.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Horse Tales Part four

Welcome back (Brenda) to my Horse Tales series. This is the last one. I promise.

You can click here for part one, part two or part three.

How organized am I? Very.

Soooo, where were we?

Ah, yes.

Rod and I had sold all belongings and were moving to the tiny island of Moorea in the South Pacific where we would farm vanilla. And coffee beans.

No? You're right. I was just checking to see if you were paying attention. But, seriously? Think of the awesome posts I could write from my over-the-water bungalow on Moorea....

Back to reality.

We had sold our three horses and all the horse "stuff" we had accumulated while we were enslaved to the Horse God. We were cleansing ourselves and getting rid of what had captured our hearts rather than God. Although difficult and sad, it was a process that needed to be done. Sorta like cleaning out your fridge when it hasn't been done for a while.
You know what I mean.

After getting our heads and hearts screwed back on right, and recognizing what had happened to us, Rod began taking a look at perhaps, someday getting a horse again. Not letting it take us over, but simply owning one horse and enjoying it.

As Winston Churchill once said, "The outside of a horse is good for the inside of a man." We know the truth of these words.

Of course by this time all of our things had sold and our barn was now completely a garage. With no stalls to keep a horse.


But Rod had planted the seed and I began looking for horses in the area. I cajoled him into getting a horse that was.... pretty.
I clean their poop out of the stalls, for goodness' sake. Shouldn't I be able to enjoy the pretty horse while I muck out poop? I think so.
All the horse people you talk to say, "You can't ride pretty," but I disagree. If we are getting a horse to ride, why can't it be pretty,too? It can be and it will be. So there.

Here's what I'm talkin' about.

Yes, I pictured myself riding astride a beautiful palomino while wearing a long, floaty white skirt. While I'm at it, my hair is long and blowing in the wind and apparently I lost quite a bit of weight. But, it's my dream, so don't wake me up.

Rod didn't really picture anything other than a horse in the barn, so it was easy to get my way with the palomino idea. Even though he'd been mercilessly mocked before for riding my Barbie-Princess horse, especially by our farrier, Sned.Once Sned actually painted the horse's hooves with glitter nail polish right before Rod was scheduled to go mountain trail riding with a group of duster and spur wearing cowboys. Can I get a "yippee-ti-yi-oh?" That was fun.

But nothing really deterred Rod. He didn't care how pretty and girly the horse was. He was content knowing he'd have one in the barn.

So I made appointments to go check out some nearby palominos that had caught my eye. Right before we were leaving for a horse looking trip, I got an email from Annette and Rob, the wonderful people who had bought our mare, Kisses and her foal, Drifter. They were just sending us updated pictures of the two horses and letting us know everything was great. I responded that night, thanking them for the pictures and letting them know we were looking for one horse.

I got an email a short time later,

" We think it is possible that God brought us into the picture to take care of your horse(s) until you were ready to have them(him) back.

Wow. We were not prepared for that response at all, in fact hadn't even considered the possibility of having Rod's baby Drifter return home to our barn.

God has different ideas and plans than I do and He doesn't always communicate these to me. Odd, isn't it?

This couple who bought our horses are great people who love the Lord and want to follow Him in all the decisions they make. We have been so blessed to meet and become friends with them. One of the things I treasure most, in all my friendships, is the ability to laugh together. When Annette and I first met, we were laughing until we cried. Don't you love people who you can laugh with like that?

Here is Annette showing me how a horse pins it's ears. Or how she pins her ears when she is upset. I can't remember which it was now.

Anyway, when I first told Rod about the emails and I saw his face at the thought of getting Drifter, his baby, back, I was completely overjoyed at the opportunity to put my silly Princess Palomino dreams away and say yes to Rod.

(see this post, written the day before the emails.Eerie, Providential, isn't it?)

So God generously gave me an opportunity to love Rod sacrificially, and gave an opportunity to Rod to get his much beloved yearling back.
What an incredible God we serve!

When we wrote back to Rob and Annette telling them of our wish to buy Drifter back, we received the following email:

"We are just fine with your decision.....we knew our place was to stand back and let you consider your options. It has been a strange place to be, while on one hand, trying let you know how much they both mean to us, and on the other, making sure you felt very comfortable to want one or both horses back. God made it very clear what our role was to be and I'm glad He has led you to your decision. "

You can see why we love and respect Rob and Annette so much. Aren't we blessed to call them friends? I think so, too.

So we say goodbye to the past, when our idol horses consumed and hello to a new day, with God as our only God, and Drifter at home in his barn.

Below you can enjoy a video of Rod bringing Drifter home and starting our horse adventure again, but with the right perspective this time.

Untitled from Diane Meyer on Vimeo.