Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Backyard Part VI

Last summer we planted sunflower seeds in our backyard. To our suprise these finches came for the seeds as the flowers bloomed. It was the highlight of our day when they showed up. We had to carefully hide behind the curtains and peer out so we wouldn't scare them off. We had not planted the seeds with the intent of attracting and watching birds, but I think in the future we will.

To see more happenings from our backyard click here or here.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Self Realisation

Art Card #45: What have you come to discover about yourself lately?

I can jog two miles. A couple years ago my friends invited me to get up early in the morning and go jogging! I laughed at the idea. Me, jog? I would rather sleep in as late as possible, thank you very much! She was a very convincing friend. She told me I would feel better about myself and have more energy. She told me that when my children greeted me in an awakened state it would be much more pleasant than when they shouted my name and told me they wanted breakfast while I was pulling the sheets up over my head. So I gave it a try. I needed to keep my body healthy and I was up for the challenge. At first I could barely go a quarter of a mile without stopping to walk a bit and catch my breath. My friends were so nice to walk with me and help me build up my endurance. I stuck with it and each month I tried to go a little bit farther. Two years later, I can run two miles without stopping! I'm sticking to this jogging habit.
Supplies: Magazine clipping from REI, stickers from Miss Elizabeth's, patterned papper from "The Stack"

Sunday, November 25, 2007


When we went to church on the 18th they asked the children what they were thankful for. Z stood up in front of the congregation and said, "I am thankful for the pretty leaves." We have made lots of piles for jumping in, have been on many walks collecting them in plastic shopping bags, and enjoyed seeing them change to brilliant oranges, yellows, and reds. On the surface her statement may appear simple, but in reality it means so much more. "Pretty leaves" gave us reasons to take walks together, stay outside just a little bit more, and giggle and laugh as we tried to escape from them when they tumbled down out of youthful hands.
We made the wreath for our door by collecting fall treasures. The girls and I enjoyed glancing under the pine boughs for the pine cones and scouting out interesting pieces of bark. We went to the dollar tree and bought a round wreath and then stuck them on with hot glue. Did I mention I like a good bargain? Total cost: $1.00.
I too, must share with you what I am grateful for, my DH who manages to impress me with his knowledge and skills, my daughters who bring joy and beauty to the everyday, and my family who can be found almost anywhere at anytime for anything. So I say, "Thank You." Thanks for letting me be me and listening to me when I complain, cry, and laugh. You mean everything to me.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Winter Bear

Ever need a project that requires a white crayon? Find some dark colored construction paper and break out the white crayons. See what neat pictures you can make! Z made this in her special art class. (I wish I was clever enough to think of ideas like this.)

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Laugh Until You Cry

Here I am and it is the bewitching hour. It is a quarter to midnight and I am visiting my sister. We are eating chocolate, sitting on the couch, and watching DVR'ed versions of our favorite shows. That's when this witch gets me laughing. She has glowing red eyes and she holds a skull in her left hand. She is broken from all the love of young toddlers. Push her button on her tummy and her eyes light up, she waves her skull up and down, and tries to tip her head side to side, only she can't anymore, so it's more like a wobble.

I stayed up too late. That is the sure recipe for laughing until you cry about everything and nothing all at the same time. Then I have to clap my hand over my eyes and hold my face because it hurts.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Buried Treasure

Ever wanted to dig up buried treasure? Z did, but wasn't sure were any was located. She didn't let that stop her. She is a resourceful person, and anyway there was a shovel in the backyard. She packed a pencil pouch with her favorite treasures; a white feather, sticker earrings, bracelet, my little pony cards, and crumpled valentine. Then she placed them in a zip lock bag and got to work digging a hole. When she was satisfied with the depth and width, she placed the treasure inside, buried it with soft brown earth and waited two weeks. That's when I stumbled onto the scene. I saw her spreading out the contents of the pouch. She had a look of amazement on her face, as if she found an ancient artifact. She was admiring them like they are worth a million dollars. She explained to me that this treasure had been buried for two years. Sure enough, when I looked out in the backyard I saw the big hole next to the little shovel. Then she reminded me of the caution she gave me two weeks before, "That's why I told you not to dig there."

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Watching for Us

My sister has a family journal that she sends to us about her activities and what her children are doing. I love to get it and read the funny things they say and do. She placed this poem in her journal in June 2005. I asked her if I could put it on my blog because I liked it so much. It lets my mind wander to the corner in my mind where I keep the curtain pulled on the memories of my mom. Sometimes I venture there, pull the curtain aside, and sit. Waves of love and loss flow over me like suns rays through the clouds. Then life quickly calls me back and I slip from my thoughts and quietly close the curtain again.

Watching for Us
She always leaned to watch for us,
Anxious if we were late,
In the winter by the window,
In summer by the gate;
And though we mocked her tenderly,
Who had such foolish care,
The long way home would seem more safe
Because she waited there.
Her thoughts were all so full of us--
She never could forget!
And so I think that where she is
She must be watching yet.
Waiting till we come home to her,
Anxious if we are late--
Watching from Heaven's window,
Leaning from Heaven's gate.
-Margaret Widdemer

Monday, November 12, 2007


Convenience is found all around me. Take for example, the picture shown above. Notice the overturned bowl? That is the washing machine. The woman who uses it to do her wash has to squat next to it and turn the clothing through the soap and water by hand. She scrubs it on a board and wrings it dry. Notice the hangers dangling from the awning, that is her dryer. After her hours of scrubbing, twisting, twirling, and slapping she can finally hang them up to dry. She is lucky today because there is no rain. She is also lucky she has an awning in case there happened to be rain. I am soooooo glad I don't have to do my laundry by hauling jugs of water to a metal bowl. Just this weekend there were many spills at our house. Namely; throw-up, bowl movements that didn't make it to the toilet, cups that tipped over, I was doing a lot of laundry. I really enjoy my washer and dryer. I want to express my gratitude to my DH for buying me a washing machine and my sister for loaning me a dryer. My heart and hands say "Thank you!"

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Bread sticks

For homemade bread sticks that go well with spaghetti, chicken soup, or lasagna here is a recipe you can try.

1 1/4 cup warm water
1 tbs yeast
2 tbs sugar
1/2 tsp salt
3-4 cups flour
1/4 cup melted butter

Dissolve yeast with sugar in warm water. Next add the salt and flour and mix for three minutes. Let the dough rise for ten minutes. Roll out the dough onto a floured surface into a rectangular shape. Place onto a creased cookie sheet and cut into sticks. Spread butter on top and let rise for five more minutes. Bake at 375 degrees for twenty minutes.

A yummy twist on this recipe:
Sprinkle a little bit of dry ranch dressing mix on the dough after it has been rolled into a rectangle. Place ham or turkey and veggies on one half. Fold remaining dough over the top and make into a pocket. Bake until brown.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007


Art Card #44: Home

Our current home is a two bedroom townhouse. I have a desk in my closet for setting up my creative corner since space is sparse. I sew and make cards in my closet. Sometimes other family members find it handy and ask to borrow it, sitting at the desk on a folding chair. Our house is not a big place but it's home. We are warm in winter, cool in summer, and have our own fenced in backyard. We have plenty of places to snuggle up with a good book and read. We have warm cookies from the oven. There are families that live in cardboard walled houses with corrugated tin roofs. I know I've been inside them. So compared to them I live in a Mansion!
supplies: Miss Elizabeth's stickers, acrylic paint, & photo caption stickers.

Thursday, November 1, 2007


Art Card #43: sCaRy

What scares you?

Gecko's scare me! It took a lot of guts to admit here on-line to my fellow readers who may think I am strong and brave. They are not poisonous, don't have sharp teeth, or let off foul odors, so why am I so easily frightened by gecko's?
When I lived in Manila we had them in our house. Their skin is see-through. They hang out on the walls looking for insects to eat. It is kind of freaky to see their heart beating under their pale skin. I have a phobia that they will jump off the wall and onto me. Especially when I am most vulnerable; in the CR (comfort room). One time I was taking a shower and looked up to see one above me. I screamed. I don't like to be surprised like that while in the shower.