Sunday, June 28, 2009

Journal entry 258--Cliche

What cliche best describes you?

"Don't count your chickens before they hatch" That seems to apply to me. When I get excited about something, I tend to jump ahead and think about all the future possibilities! I'm learning to relax and wait.
I'm changing this blog to a once a week meme, so now it will be weekly reminders. Hope that's okay with everyone.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Journal entry 257--Father's day

Write about a memorable Father's Day with the man you love.

My best Father's Day has been since I was married. I was blessed to have found such a great man who is a great father to our children. He is everything that I wished for in a father. I always remind my children how fortunate they are and thankfully they know it. I love seeing them interact with their father and after seeing my husband's father, I know where he learned it. He was a great example to my husband and he is more of a father to me than my own was. It's been good for me to see that there are men out there who are loving fathers.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Journal entry 256--Tickets

Have you ever gotten a driving ticket? Describe what happened.

I got my first ticket when I was 17 years old for speeding. I thought it was okay to drive 75 in the fast lane of the freeway. Granted, this was back when the speed limit was 55 on the freeway.I tried to talk my way out of the ticket, a skill that would later work in weasling out of a ticket, but this time it didn't work. During that time, I was in college and taking a biology class. I was bringing home my dissection rat to study for a test. The poor cop was a bit grossed out seeing my flailed opened, pinned down rat lying on the passenger seat. Oh well.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Journal entry 255-Child

Describe yourself as a child.

I was a happy little kid up until my father left us. After that, my mother kind of shut down and my sister, brother and I had to grow up fast and parent ourselves. By age 8 or 9, I was still silly. I remember getting a hold of a tape recorder and saying random things in it like recording all the German words I knew, which weren't very many. I was also imitating some of the characters on the "Dukes of Hazard" television show. One time my brother and I decided to record our version of the Beatle's Number 9 song only ours was called "Take 10." It was fun to be silly because it took our minds of other things.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Journal entry 254--Morning

How do you get ready to start your day? Any tricks to being on time?

I'm great at running out the door, frantically yelling at my children to "hurry" and being late somewhere. I think I just try to do too much and then I run out of time. My 7 year old is teaching me how to not rush her by being very slow and getting angry with me when I tell her to hurry. Consequently this makes getting ready last longer and I get more frustrated. Since then, I've thought about what I'm expecting of her--to drop everything she's doing and run out the door. So to compromise, I now give her a 10 minute warning and show her what the clock will look like when it's time to go. This way she can finish up whatever she's doing and be ready to go when the time comes. It's a work in progress. I just need to be better prepared.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Journal entry 253--Travel

What do you think is the best part of traveling? Seeing new things or coming home?

I love to travel and see new things and meet new people. I love to see how other people and cultures live and act. However, if I'm with my family, I'm okay to stay a long time. I don't miss the busy life and deadlines and homework, etc. If I'm away from my children, I start missing them too much and can't really enjoy myself. The best trip we took as a family was a cruise. I didn't want to leave the boat!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Journal entry 252--Winning

How far would you go to win? Are there any actions that would be acceptable to you?

I love to win, especially when it's a game that I know I'm good at or in my mind, should win. However, I won't cheat to win. What's the point? You end up knowing you won under false pretenses and that it means nothing. When I play a game with my husband, it's all out war and each one of us tries to win. Usually when playing with my equally competitive 11 year old, I don't cut him any breaks but I do for my 7 year old (naturally). I hate when people cheat in games and don't follow the rules. My 11 year old is inheriting my competitive nature!

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Journal entry 251--Help!

I need your help! I'm having a difficult time thinking of things to write about. Anyone have any suggestions?!?

Friday, May 29, 2009

Journal entry 250--Your home

What do you love about where you live?

I love how my city has a small town feel to it. It's big enough that not everyone knows me and what's going on in my life but small enough to run into someone I know at Target, Costco or the farmer's market. The best part of where I live are the friends I have. We see them every Sunday at church and it's been a wonderful way to raise my family. We have a lot of wildlife at our house, although there are many times I don't like them eating my garden. It's just a great city and I love living here.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Journal entry 249--Forgiveness

Do you struggle with forgiving someone who has hurt you? Write about how you are trying to forgive that person.

I have struggled my entire life with forgiving my father for not being a father to me. What makes forgiving him even harder is that I don't really think I loved him or even liked him for that matter. I never really knew him and when I did catch up with him 30 years later, I found that he had very few redeeming values. I know I shouldn't judge him but it was wrong that he chose alcohol over his children, whether he could help it or not. I look at my 6 year old daughter and can't even imagine putting her through the same pain that I felt at the same age. I'm trying to forgive him but I still feel too much anger towards him.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Journal entry 248--Family Gatherings

What do you look forward to during family gatherings?

I love to get together with family and play games. We usually sit around a table and play different card games, board games and a certain dice game. It's fun to be able to talk to each other and laugh about our competitiveness. I also look foward to putting a puzzle together with my nieces and nephews. We always seem to get out a puzzle and frantically try to put it all together by dinner so we can use the dining room table.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Journal entry 247--Brothers

Write about an experience with your brother.

My brother is a genius. So growing up with an extremely smart brother lent itself to some interesting experiments. I was the hunchbacked Igor to my brother's Dr. Frankenstein either helping with various experiments or being the guinea pig. One time that comes to mind is when he made a generator that sent out small volts of electricity to whoever was holding the two attached metal poles. While I, Igor, held the metal poles, my brother would turn a crank which sent out the electricity. He usually stopped turning it a minute or so after I started yelling.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Journal entry 246--Helping

How can bad situations in your life give you more compassion towards others? Write about a time when this happened.

I've written before about how I didn't have the most ideal childhood and at times I feel sad about it, but I have learned a lot from it. I've been in many situations where I needed to understand how another person was feeling in order to help them. One that comes to mind is a young boy who had just lost his father. He was suppose to participate in a play but felt too alone and upset to be around others who didn't understand what he was experiencing. I was able to share with him how I felt when my mother died when I was young and knew what he was going through. He eventually agreed to be in the play and did a great job. He just needed to be understood and unless you've been through a similar experience, it's difficult. I wish my mother had not died but I am grateful that I had the opportunity to help this young man.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Journal entry 245--Villains

Write about your favorite fictional or non fictional villain.

This is hard to think of someone! One person that comes to mind is Professor Moriarty from Sherlock Holmes. Sure he's evil but he's so smart and I have to respect that.

Sherlock Holmes described Moriarty as follows:

"He is a man of good birth and excellent education, endowed by nature with a phenomenal mathematical faculty. At the age of twenty-one he wrote A Treatise on the Binomial Theorem, which has had a European vogue. On the strength of it he won the mathematical chair at one of our smaller universities, and had, to all appearances, a most brilliant career before him.

But the man had hereditary tendencies of the most diabolical kind. A criminal strain ran in his blood, which, instead of being modified, was increased and rendered infinitely more dangerous by his extraordinary mental powers. Dark rumors gathered round him in the University town, and eventually he was compelled to resign his chair and come down to London..."

Friday, May 15, 2009

Journal entry 244--Impressions

Finish this sentence: "People usually view me as..."

I think people usually view me as shy or even stuck-up. I've had a lot of disappointments in my life and tend to put up a shield before getting to know someone. It's not that I don't want to meet the person, I just need time to get comfortable. Sometimes I also get tired of chit-chat and I'm a bit of a loner person. I don't think chatting with store clerks, etc because I just want to get out of there. I guess I need to work on this.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Journal entry 243--Creativity

Sorry I haven't been posting a lot, but I'm still recovering from shoulder surgery and sometimes it hurts to type on the computer.
When are you the most creative? Early morning or late at night? Why?

I am the most creative the minute my head hits the pillow. At a time when you're suppose to shut your mind down and relax, that's when my brain really starts churning. Many times I keep a note pad on my night stand to jot down ideas otherwise I will inevitably forget by morning. A few months ago, I was writing a play for my church and I must have turned my night light on at least 5 times to write down ideas. Sometimes I don't even bother turning on the light and I just write things down in the dark. I guess I think better at night because all the distractions of life are gone for the moment and I can actually hear myself think!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Journal entry 242--Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to everyone! I hope you think about your mom at some point today and if you can wish her a happy mother's day! Enjoy yourselves today and relax!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Journal entry 241--Mother

What about something you admire about your mother.

My mother was very artistic and creative. She was always doing some kind of craft when I was little and could sew anything. She also made the best wheat bread ever! Growing up, she sewed many of my church dresses which I loved because they were unique and unlike anyone else's. One time I was in a play and my mother made a bunch on animal masks for us. They were colorful and fun to use. I miss her creativity.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Journal entry 240--Movies

Have you ever walked out of a movie? If yes, what was the movie and why did you leave it?

I've walked out of a couple of movies and wish I had walked out of several more. My friend and I left a movie called "The Pick-up Artist" with Robert Downey Jr. I don't remember what the movie was about only that we left because it was so boring. There is another movie that I saw with a friend called, "Meet Joe Black." Basically we both thought the other one wanted to see the movie so we stayed only to find out later that we both wanted to leave. At that point the movie was half over so we stayed and just talked through the movie. Don't worry there was no one else in the theater.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Journal entry 239--Nails

Describe a silly thing you did as a child.

Aren't most of the things you do as a child silly? I remember painting my nails a very frosty shade of lilac and then turning cartwheels in my backyard. I must have painted at least 15 coats of polish on my nails. After each coat and before they were dry, I would run into the backyard and turn cartwheels a few times before heading back in for more polish. I thought my nails looked great and was amazed that they never got smudged. Looking back, I think I was delusional!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Journal entry 238--Games

Describe a game that you used to play as a child.

I used to play a game called MASH where each letter stood for a different category of housing. For example, mansion, apartment, shack and house. The person would list four boys she wanted to marry, four kinds of cars and four numbers that represented the amount of children you wanted. Then the person would draw a continuous circle and count the number of lines it made. Next, you counted that number and cross out whatever ended on the number. Whatever was left in each category was you future. So you might end up married to Billy, living in a shack with 5 kids and driving a limo. It was a silly game but my friends and I loved to play it.

Thursday, April 30, 2009

Journal entry 237--Your day

Describe your day today. Is it any different than your other days?

Today was not much different than most Thursdays. I went to the gym where I'm slowly getting back into exercise after my shoulder surgery and then headed over to Walgreens. There I bought a bunch of stuff for $.10! Yes, I'm addicted to using coupons. After I went home, I worked in my garden and continued to devise evil plots to destroy the rabbits that eat my garden and finally I went to my daughter's school where I teach music. Once that was over, I took my daughter to piano lessons and then picked up my two boys from middle school. Lastly I drove to Albertson's where I cleaned up on more great deals. I know this is all very boring but how was your day?

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Journal entry 236--Dogs

If you could be any animal in the world, what would it be and why?

I think I would need to be a fantasy animal because the idea of flight has always intrigued me and also going anywhere underwater. If I had to choose something I think it would be an eagle. Although, the thought of a mouse diet is very unappealing. Maybe I could be a shark or some creature in the abyss. That way, I could explore the ocean. Probably the best life of an animal is my puppy, Ruthie's. I suppose I could be her and have a life of ease--sleeping on a cozy bed, constant attention and meals on demand!

Monday, April 27, 2009

Journal entry 235--View

Describe a beautiful view.

I could stare at the ocean all day. I love it! To me, it is the most relaxing view to admire. I love watching the waves form, crest and then crash onto the shore. I'm always on the lookout for dolphins and sea lions either jumping through the water or peeking their noses out. Pelicans are also fun to watch as they dive straight down into the water for a snack. I love the sounds and view of the ocean.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Journal entry 234--Earth

With the celebration of Earth day last week, what changes if any have you made to help the environment?

I try to conserve energy by turning off lights and changing all my bulbs to florescent. I have a compost in my backyard and a garden. I would love to put up solar panels and a wind mill in my yard but it cost too much money for the amount we would save. My biggest struggle is the shower. It's so hard to be quick about it! I'm trying!

Friday, April 24, 2009

Journal entry 233--Smile

Write ten things that make you smile.

1. My children and husband
2. My puppy
3. Getting checks in the mail
4. A great yard sale find
5. Winning a card game
6. Chocolate chip cookies
7. Stability
8. Marx Brother's or Mel Brooks movies
9. Watching my garden grow
10. A good book

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Journal entry 232--Wind

What does the wind remind you of?

I always think about my bedroom when I was a child. My bed was up against the window, which had curtains. I loved to lie on my bed and let the wind gently blow the curtains outward. I loved the feel of the warm air and the smell of orange blossoms it brought with it. An orange tree was just outside my bedroom window. It was so relaxing to lie there and let the curtains fan my face. Now a days, unfortunately, the wind is too strong where I live to enjoy it!

Monday, April 20, 2009

Journal entry 231--Skills

Describe a skill that you would like to learn.

I am learning how to make cheese. I've always been interested in the cheese making process and last year purchased a cheese making kit. This Thursday, I'm putting it to the test. Ideally I would love to be able to make hard cheeses like cheddar but I'll need a special refrigerator for that. We'll see. I'd hate to spend more money on making cheese than it actually costs to buy it! I'll have to let you all know how my cheese turns out this Thursday!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Journal entry 230--Fathers

Write about something special your father has given you.

I've realized that most of my entries don't involve fathers because of my lack of a father growing up. However, I know a lot of you had or have a very loving father so this entry is for you! The only thing I can think of that my father gave me was a china doll my grandmother made. I loved my grandmother and admired her talent for sewing and handicrafts. Making china dolls was just one of her many talents and I'm thankful I got to keep one of her dolls.

Friday, April 17, 2009

Journal entry 229--Schools

Describe how you feel about your state's current education system. Do you think it's doing enough for your children?

I'm personally fed up with our education system. I'm inches away from homeschooling my three kids and I don't really know what's stopping me. It just seems like everyone's priorities are going different ways and no one realizes that the schools need money to give our kids the education they deserve. My boys had a great fourth grade teacher who recognized what to do with gifted kids and always tried new and innovative things with the kids. She just received her pink slip because she is not tenured and at the same time one of the worst teachers is still teaching because she is tenured. My friend is a tenured teacher and she has fought to end tenure because she agrees that teachers should stay because of their merit and skills. Now I know there are many, many tenured teachers out there who are wonderful but I'm talking about the ones who are not and still stay at a school teaching. Arrgghhh! The whole system drives me nuts!

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Journal entry 228--Children

Each day write about one of your children and how they are similar to you.

My daughter, Olivia is very similar to me and the way I acted as a child. Like her, I was the youngest in my family with two siblings much older than I. We both had to fight to keep up with the older kids and always wanted to do what they did. Olivia is precocious and talkative. My grandfather said I was the same way and if he wanted to know everything that was happening in our family, he just needed to get me on the phone and I would spill the beans. One thing about Olivia that is not like I was is her faith in Heavenly Father. I wish I had as much faith as she does. She's an example to me with her simple, straightforward love for Heavenly Father and Jesus.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Journal entry 227--Children

Each day write about one of your children and how they are similar to you.

My son, Chris is very pensive and quiet which is how I was as a child. He's the type that likes to have 1 or 2 good friends around him rather than a large group. Chris is cautious with others and can be shy at times. I was a lot like that growing up. I didn't like to deal with lots a people around me and would rather hang out with my best friend. Chris is not like into sports which is what I was like. He loves reading just like I do and has often gotten into trouble at school for reading a book during class. I did the same thing by hiding my book in front of my textbook when I thought the teacher was boring. Chris has a great sense of wit and I love being around him.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Journal entry 226--Children

For the next few days, depending on how many children you have, describe how each child is similar to you. Make each day entry for each child.

My son, Brad is probably the most like me. He's very passionate about whatever he believes in and has an opinion about everything. I'm a lot like that only I was worse when I was younger. He thinks everything should be equal and fair, especially if it pertains to his well being! I can be like that as well. In games, I hate it when people who know better, cheat. Brad is the same way. He can't even handle it when I let his little sister win. He's such a good and loving child and I love him tremendously.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Journal entry 225-- Easter

Happy Easter everyone! Describe an Easter from your past.

Every Easter, growing up my family would go for dinner to my grandparents house. We'd have an Easter egg hunt with all the cousins and I would always get a big chocolate Easter bunny in my basket. Then I would sit down with a jar of peanut butter and dip broken pieces of chocolate into the peanut butter. My grandmother would always serve ham, potatoes and green beans. Her food was delicious especially her desserts which were pies. She always made a lemon meringue pie with her fresh lemons from her tree. Her lemon pie was the best. Besides missing her, I also miss her wonderful lemon pie.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Journal entry 224--Car trips

Describe a long car trip you've taken as a child.

Growing up we would often take a long car trip from Los Angeles to Provo, Utah. Twelve hours long! If you've ever driven that trek you'll know how dreadfully boring it is going through the desert. Often times our radio would not pick up any music only static and we certainly didn't have Nintendo DS nor DVD players. To pass the time, we would play lots of car games as well as card games. I would also read a lot or sleep. I really hated making those trips although it was fun to see my grandparents. My children now have no idea how easy it is for them! DVD players and hand held games occupy their time now!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Journal entry 223--Losing a tooth

Write about a time when you lost a tooth. How did you lose it? Was it your first tooth?

I have allergies and as a child needed to take medicine. This medicine was disgusting and made me want to throw up whenever I smelled it. One day my sister was asked to give me my medicine, however, she had more important things to do and was pretty annoyed that she had to do this task. She carefully pour the medicine onto a spoon and waited for me to open my mouth. The medicine was nasty, remember, so I wouldn't open up! Finally, I did when I had listened enough to my sister getting mad at me and she jammed the spoon in knocking my front tooth out. The tooth was already loose so I didn't mind that she knocked it out, but she felt bad!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Journal entry 222--Secret

What's something you've never told anyone. If you're brave enough, write it down.

I'm not brave enough to write my secrets down. They're between me and God and nobody else! So maybe you'll have better luck writing yours down!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Journal entry 221--Christmas shopping

Describe one of your most harried Christmas shopping experiences.

Every year growing up Christmas shopping was a crazy time. Most of my mom's shopping was done on Christmas eve! It just seemed like a normal part of the season. Because we waited until Christmas eve to complete our shopping, the stores were busy with long lines and grumpy people. Sometimes we even bought a Christmas present on Christmas day! It wasn't until I married my husband and realized that Christmas shopping is best done early in the season. My mother-in-law starts buying presents the day after Christmas for the following Christmas! That's a little too early for me.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Journal entry 220--Closet

Write about what one would see in your closet right now.

Someone would see a big mess! A pile of clothes ready to iron are sitting on our ironing board and my shoes are in disarray. I try to organize my clothes and it looks great but that only lasts about a month. For the most part my closet isn't too bad. I have seen worse but writing this just reminds me that I need to get busy and organize it again.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Journal entry 219--Impatience

Are you impatient? How impatient are you?

Before I had children I was extremely impatient. I think that childrens' actual inability to move quickly helped teach me patience. One thing I'm not patient about is my own personal healing. As you know I had shoulder surgery 3 weeks ago and I'm getting pretty sick of not being able to do every I normally did. I want to get my garden ready and spring clean my house but I'm so limited that I just end up frustrated. My doctor says I need to rest my arm more and take it easy and I try but I get depressed and impatient being limited. I know I should relish this time when I have an excuse not to do stuff but that can only last so long!

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Journal entry 218--Siblings

Describe a memory involving a sibling.

My brother is 10 years older than I am and I always wanted to be around him when I was little. I thought everything he did was clever and fun. He had this remote controlled helicopter that was attached to a long, thick wire and flew in a circle and I loved playing with it. Often we would build a little barrack out of legos with a little military man trapped inside. Then we flew the helicopter around and around bashing it into the lego prison until the man was freed. All the while listening to The Dr. Demento Show on the radio. I loved that my brother played with me even though I was so much younger.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Journal entry 217--Vices

What is the strangest vice you've ever overcome?

When I was three years old I had a strange habit of scratching my belly button. I really don't remember too much of it because I was so little, but my mom said I couldn't keep my hands off of it. I do remember our mean family doctor who threaten to sew my belly button closed if I didn't stop playing with it. I still to this day believe he would have done it and that it wasn't a threat! After that I stopped scratching my belly button and ended my strangest vice ever!

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Journal entry 216--Gardens

How does your garden grow? Describe your gardening plans for this season or a past garden attempt.

I grow a garden every year and some years are good and some, like last year, are bad. I can always grow foods that are not my favorite like beets and squash. Last year my tomatoes were destroyed by worms, and our new puppy who discovered tomatoes were tasty. I'm trying my hand at hydroponic gardening this year and will let you all know how that goes. So far in my little Aerogarden I'm growing herbs quite successfully and have several little seedlings growing in my kitchen window. I'm really just glad that my family doesn't rely on my garden for life support otherwise we'd be in big trouble.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Journal entry 215--Sayings

Have you ever said something that you had no intention of it being said out loud, yet somehow it did?

When I was 11 years old, the movie "War Games" came out and I loved it! I remember my family was eating dinner with my brother's girlfriend's family and someone asked me if I liked the movie. I blurted out, "Yes and Matthew Brodrick is so cute." As those words were exiting my mouth I was trying to think of a way to crawl under the table. I had no intention of saying those words out loud! I was thinking that but didn't want everyone at the dinner table to hear it! My brother totally teased me for that one.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Journal entry 214--Saving

How do you save money? What are your tricks if any?

I've started using coupons and shopping deals lately and it has become more of a game for me. I've been checking out the ads and comparing them with my clipped coupons to stock up and get the lowest prices. I've also just tried to ask myself before a purchase, "Do I really need this?" Most of the time I don't or I wouldn't hesitate before buying it. The thing that's nice about saving money with groceries is that I don't feel as bad about buying a want item. The whole process has been liberating.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Journal entry 213--Crank Call

Have you ever made a crank phone call? Describe it.

Before caller ID, it was easy to crank call people. Not that it's okay to do that. The crank calls I made were innocent, mostly to boys I liked. I would call their number, hear their voices and hang up. Then my friends and I would giggle hysterically like the silly little girls we were. Probably the worse crank call I made was when I was 8 years old and I randomly called some man and sang "You Light Up My Life" by Debby Boone to him. He was nice and told me, "Not bad." Pathetic!

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Journal entry 212--Spring

What do you think about when the season Spring begins?

Whenever Spring hits and the weather becomes warmer, I start thinking about the beach. I live in Southern California so when it's Spring I start getting antsy for Summer weather and the beach. I also have grand aspirations of spring cleaning my house and throwing away unnecessary items, but I never quite see it come to pass. You see, I have children who think that any work longer than an hour violates child labor laws. We did, however clean out our garage today, so I think we're on the right spring cleaning track.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Journal 211--Say what?!?

Describe a time when you were told you something only to find out later that it was false.

When I was 3 years old, I went to a preschool that had a big tree house. It was so much fun climbing up there and looking down at all your friends playing on the school yard. One day as I reached the top of the ladder and went into the tree house, there was a pile of doodoo on the floor. I quickly climbed down and told the teacher who replied, "It was probably done by a dog." I believed her and went off to play. After I got home that day, I told my mom what had happened. Her reply? "Can dogs climb ladders??" I thought for a minute. "No, then who did it?" My quirky mother's answer? "Probably a little boy!" Thankfully I never did find out the culprit.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Journal entry 210--Dumb

Have you ever done something so dumb, you just had to laugh at yourself afterward?

I actually burned my cornea with a curling iron! I was getting ready to go to church and because it was the late 80's, I needed to curl my bangs. Somehow the curling iron slipped from the hair and hit the inside of my eye. It was quick but hurt so much I wanted to cry. I went through the day with a watery eye and blurred vision until I finally decided to go to the emergency room. I was trying to avoid the ER because I was a poor college student. The Ophthalmologist fixed me right up with eye drops and an eye patch. My future husband had a good laugh and now I can laugh at it too.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Journal entry 209--Memories

Describe a childhood memory.

My best friend growing up had a little pond in the front of her house. This pond attracted many frogs and tadpoles so we decided to catch them and keep them as pets. It was great watching the tadpoles turn into frogs and then have a bunch of frogs as pets. My mother wasn't too happy with that. But I was and ended up with 10 little frogs. To feed them, we would place a plastic bowl with honey inside it and leave it outside to collect ants. Once the bowl was filled with captive ants, I put the lid on and left the bowl in the freezer. The ants froze and came out of the honey easily for the frogs to eat. They were happy little guys.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Journal entry 208--Surgery

Have you ever had surgery? Describe the event and what went through your head before hand.

I had surgery on my shoulder last Tuesday repairing some torn cartilage. I was quite scared before the surgery. Realistically I knew that I would be okay and survive but every time I said good-bye to my kids that day, the crazy thought of "is this the last time I'll see them?" Yes, I know it was crazy thoughts but it was difficult to stop them! Everything turned out alright and my shoulder is now healing. My blog posts for the next few weeks might be a bit shorter because it hurts to type for a long time, but I'll try to keep up. Thanks for hanging in there with me.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Off for next two days

Hello all,
I just had shoulder surgery today and will not be able to write any entries for the next few days. Continue to write on your own. I'll be back. Thank you.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Journal entry 207--Theft

Recently two of my neighbors were robbed. Has this ever happened to you? Describe your experience.

I've never had my home burglarized but I have had things stolen from me. One that comes to mind is my wallet. I was shopping at the grocery store and I think my wallet fell out of my purse. Later I noticed it was missing and went back to the store. No one had turned in my wallet, yet it had all my identification in it. The entire experience was simply aggravating because then I had to cancel all my credit cards and make sure everything is in order. It's also maddening to think that people can be so dishonest. What ever happened to the golden rule?!?

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Journal entry 206--Fathers

Describe your father or a memory about your father.

I really can't do this entry because I grew up without my father in my life. The few times he came around, the memories are not so good. Hopefully you will have better memories to write about. I feel blessed that I married a man who is an amazing father to our children and can give them the love I never felt from a dad.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Journal entry 205--Regret

Is there anything you regret in your life? Describe it.

I was 20 years old when my mom died. There was a moment when she was in the hospital that I had a strong impression to talk to her about a will or getting her to put something in writing. I ignored the urging because I didn't want to think about her dying or give up hope. The following day she went into a coma which eventually ended her life. Consequently my mom did not have a will and her entire estate went into probate. Thank goodness my uncle was there to help my brother, sister and I. After many months of court hassles, we were finally able to settle her estate. At that time and for many years after, I regretted not listening to that prompting to talk to my mom about a will. Things worked out and I have no more regrets about it. I've learned, however, to listen better.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Journal entry 204--Dislike

Have you ever disliked someone at first sight? Write about your experience and what if anything became of it.

There have been a handful of people in my life who for reasons I can't explain, just bothered me. I don't know why I disliked those people. I've certainly tried to like them but it's just a feeling I get around them. There is a person I know right now that I try to like but they really bugged me! The problem of it all is this person is quite nice but for some reason I don't like them. So what do I do with this dilemma? I'm civil and friendly to the person. I don't hang out with them because I don't have to and I'm trying to find something I can enjoy about the person. It's hard but I'm trying.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Journal entry 203--Play/work

Can you play in your work? If yes, write about an element of play in your work. If no, why not?

I'm a stay home mom so play is always a part of my work. I play house, tea parties and games with my daughter and I play the Wii with my boys. When our family is doing their chores, we try to make a game out of it so it is not drudgery. It's important to play and let loose. I love having fun with my husband and children. Those are the memories I want and not mopping my kitchen floor.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Journal entry 202--The past

What are some behaviors that used to be the custom when your parents were younger that you wish we still did?

With all the technology we have today, communication has really taken a backseat. No one writes letters anymore. I have some old letters that my great uncle wrote to my grandfather from 1920 and they are some much fun to read. It's even interesting to see their handwriting and their way with words. I have letters my mother wrote to me when I was a child and I love to look back at them and remember her from her handwriting. What will my children have to look back on from me? I've thought about going a year with only writing letters to communicate! That would be challenging and interesting!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Journal entry 201--Motivation

What motivates you to finish something you didn't really want to do in the first place?

I hate housework but I know it has to get done because I also hate my house messy. My motivation to getting the house clean is enlisting the help of my husband and children and setting a timer for 15 minutes. During that time we clean as fast as we can and try to get the most done before the timer goes off. It motivates me because then I have to focus on one thing at a time rather than get distracted and work on something unrelated like cleaning out a drawer I haven't looked in for months!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Journal entry 200--Grandmother

Describe one of your grandmothers. Do you have a special memory of her?

My grandmother on my mom's side was hilarious. She let us call her "granny good witch!" Every Saturday, she had her hair and nails colored red and had a back so straight that when my husband first met her, he thought she had a rod implanted into her back. She played the organ her entire life, (that's why her back was so straight) and I can still hear her nails clicking across the keyboard as she played. My grandmother and I shared a musical bond; we both played the piano. Although, she mainly concentrated on the organ. After grandma died I couldn't touch the piano for 6 months. Everytime I tried to play a song, I'd start bawling. My granny good witch was a talented, classy woman whom I admire still.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Journal entry 199--Humor

What kinds of humor do you enjoy the most?

I have always liked a dry, witty humor. My husband has that which is one of the reasons I married him. I grew up watching British comedies which has a very dry sense of humor and I guess I became used to that. I love parody and satire where someone takes a real social problem and mocks it. An example of this is the Mel Brooks movie, "Blazing Saddles." That movie parodied racism and basically made fun of the people who are racist. Of course that movie couldn't be made now a days because people have become too politically correct and miss that fact that that movie is mocking what is wrong. It's still a hilarious movie.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Journal entry 198--Inventions

What do you think is one of the greatest inventions made?

Besides all the medical miracles we have now, some of which I wouldn't have my twin boys without, I'd have to choose Velcro. I love that stuff. Probably because I can't sew a zipper if my life depended on it. Now I can close anything with some Velcro. I use the stuff for costumes mainly but I've also used it for crafts and things I've made for my children. Velcro rocks!!

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Journal entry 197--Middle names

Do you have a middle name? What is the significance behind your middle name?

My middle name is Devon which is fun because it turned out that I married a man named Devin. When I was a baby, my mother's friend had a son named Devon. My mother loved the name and wanted to give me that name as well. Growing up I didn't really like the name because back then it was very unusual. During every school graduation, the announcer always messed up my middle name, calling me DeVon. It drove me crazy! Now I like my middle name. I especially like that it's the same as my husbands!

Monday, February 23, 2009

Journal entry 196--Social Event

Describe the last social event you attended.

Last December I got to accompany my husband to his work holiday party for all the health care workers who work for the hospital. What an honor! I was actually excited to go--the Four Season hotel, appetizers, etc.., until the talk, or should I say lecture started. Wow, either I'm extremely stupid or that talk was entirely inappropriate. I can't even write about the topic because it made no sense to me. For all I know, the lecture was conducted in another language--boring language. Yet, it wasn't just me with the glazed-over look in the eyes, other people in the room, including doctors had a hard time staying awake. The doc. sitting next to Devin wrote a bunch of negative comments on the evaluation form and then would proudly show everyone within a 5 foot radius . After the talk came the question and answer part of the evening. I was tempted to raise my hand and say, "I don't get it." Some people in the audience surprisingly asked questions although those were equally difficult to understand. I think the speaker paid those people to ask questions so it would look like someone actually comprehended his talk.
It was still fun to go out with my hubby.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Journal entry 195--Miracles

Describe a miracle that has occurred in your life.

One of my miracles is my husband. He is the greatest thing to come into my life. He's my best friend and keeps me smiling still after 17 years of marriage! Growing up, my childhood was less than ideal, however my husband has given me hope and shown me that there are good, loving fathers out in the world and he's one of them. He's gentle, kind and forgiving of all my stupidness!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Journal entry 194--Changes

What changes, if any, have you made in your life during this economic turmoil?

I've been using more of our food storage and serving more meals consisting of beans and rice. I'm certainly more penny pinching like I was when my husband was in school and we had no money. It was easy a few years ago for me to become complacent and think all is well, but now with everything in a crunch, I've started feeling unstable with the economy. That feeling like someone could pull the rug out from under you at any moment. Some other changes I've made are I'm planning on getting rid of our basic cable television and just asking myself before purchases if I really need that item.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Journal entry 193--Love Languages

There are several books out called "The 5 Love Languages for..."
then you can fill in the rest, either children, men, teenagers, etc. The author states that there are 5 languages in which we respond best to love. They are Physical touch, words of affirmation, quality time, service, and gifts. Which language do you think you respond to?

I am definitely quality time. I love and feel more loved when people spend time with me. That's why I'm always bugging my husband to play scrabble with me! Once he gives me some quality time, I'm a much happier person. My daughter is just like me. She handles life's little hardships much better when I spend some time with her first. My boys are physical touch. They both love when we hug and kiss them. I'm still trying to figure out what my husband is!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Journal entry 192--High school

Describe how you felt about High School or upper level schooling. Did you have a good experience?

I enjoyed parts of high school. I enjoyed being a flag girl and twirling flags all the time and I enjoyed my friends. But their was a part of me that longed to get out. I was so bored in school and didn't really like school until I got to college. By the time I was a senior in high school, I really did not care much about the people, only my close friends. I knew that once high school ended I most likely would never see these people again. I guess I like having a handful of close friends and didn't want to be bothered with chit chat from the other 900 students. Twenty years later I've kept in contact with 3 friends and two of them are my cousins!

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Journal entry 191--Television

If you could be in any television show, past or present, which would it be and why?

My entire childhood revolved around plotting to go on a cruise ship just so I could meet Gopher from The Love Boat. I think I sincerely believed he worked on the Princess Line. Why I had a crush on him, I'm not sure. Possibly because he was the cutest out of all the men on that show or he was kind of funny. I don't even think I knew what to do with him if he really was the Yeoman Purser for the Love Boat and I was the adventurous passenger. How could I know? I was only 8 years old!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Journal entry 190--A Family Pet

Describe a past or present family pet. What kind of pet was/is it? How did/do you feel about this pet?

We got a puppy when I was 5 years old and I thought she was the greatest thing in the world. We brought home our little black fluff ball and sat in a circle on the floor with her in the middle. She ran around from person to person getting to know us all. Jodi was my little playmate. I thought of her as my baby sister and would actually tell people that we adopted another child. We would play tug of war and I'd chase her around our coffee table that was opened on each end. Jodi would run through the opening and slide across the wood. In the morning when she woke up, she would stand on my chest and just stare. After getting used to the uneasy feeling of being watched, my eyes would open and was awakened to hundreds of kisses from Jodi. That's how she told me she wanted to got to the bathroom. Jodi was such a smart dog could recognize words like "cookie" and "bye bye." She was also a stubborn, feisty dog that could hold onto a toy and not let go even if the toy was lifted in the air. Jodi lived a long life and finally died when she was 16 years old of congestive heart failure.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Journal entry 189--Humor

Has humor ever saved you from a bad mood? Describe it.

My husband is hilarious. He has a way of making me laugh even when I want to kill him. There have been times when I'm acting snippy towards him and he just starts making fun of the situation and himself that helps me calm down. Of course he also knows when it's not a good idea to do that. When I'm completely furious about something, he tries to be more understanding and help me in that way. What a guy!

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Journal entry 188--Valentine's day

What do you like to do for your loved ones on Valentine's Day?

I simply like to spend time with my loved ones. This Valentine's Day, my husband and I took our kids to the store and let them pick out whatever candy they wanted for $7. They loved going down the aisles choosing their favorite candies and knowing that they won't have to share with each other unless they want to. As for my hubby and I, tonight we're going to spend time with some friends and celebrate Valentine's Day together the next weekend. What can I say, we're practical and would rather go to a restaurant on a less busy night when the quality will be higher than the quantity.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Journal entry 187--Mistake

Describe a mistake you've made in the past.

Growing up we had a black cat named Kelly who lived on our patio. She was a sweet kitty who loved us to pet her. One evening, my sister came home in tears carrying our dear pussy cat in her arms. Kelly had just been hit by a car. At the time I worked for a veterinarian and called him or I should say begged him to go down to the office at 9:30pm and check out my cat. However, there was nothing that could be done and we put poor Kelly out of her misery.

Later as we were all sitting and remembering our lost little family member, we saw a black cat outside where Kelly usually sat. Thinking it was our neighbor's cat, Piwacket, who also was a black cat and identical looking to Kelly, I quickly ran out to scare it away. I didn't want Piwacket to desecrate Kelly's memory. Normally, Piwacket ran away anytime one of got near him. This time, however, the cat purred and rubbed up and down our legs. I think you can see where this is going. Soon we discovered that we had put to sleep our neighbor's cat instead of ours. I got the unfortunate job of telling the, said, neighbors.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Journal entry 186--Funny Moment

Describe a funny moment that has happened in you life recently.

Last spring my son, Chris was in a play which was all about the inner workings of the body. Each child was a certain organ, ie, the lovely liver, kidney twins and my personal favorite, the raging hormone. Chris got to personify the hormone even though he had no idea what it actually meant.

The play started out like most school plays. Kids filing onto the stage, cameras clicking and flashing all around and various waves from the actors to their parents. We were sitting in the front row eagerly watching Chris sing with his class when I started to notice a strange look on his face.

Me: (whispering) Devin, what's wrong with Chris? Is he scared?

Brad: (who obviously thinks he's Devin, chirps up) That's what he looks like when he's going to sneeze.

Me: stare blankly at Brad.

At this point I start to realize where this is all headed. Vomitland. Without making too much of a scene, I repeatedly nudge my head over to one side telling him to get off the stage. I'm sure from behind I looked like those guys on Saturday Night Live that dance to "What is Love?"

"Get off the stage!" Just as I was about to run up the stage to rescue him like the Super Mom that I am, it happened. Projectile vomit. He timed it perfectly because they were right in the middle of singing, "Internal, internal, internal organs..." I think every jaw dropped opened at that moment. Then just to put that extra cherry on top, Chris turned to the side to finally walk off the stage and, you guessed it, more projectile vomit. We all got a side view as well.

Next we got to hear a kids chorus of "ewwww." The teachers ushered the kids off. Mr. janitor got the pleasure of cleaning up said vomit and I got to sit--still in the front row mind you--and wait for the lovely aroma of stomach acid to clear the air.

Poor guy, but the show must go on. And it did. Of course no one would stand in the ghostly vomit spot even though it was cleaned up. Chris waited for his lines back stage. Everyone cheered for him after he did his part. What a trooper.

Let me know if you ever get to see the video of this on America's Funniest Videos.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Journal entry 185--Questions

For the next 5 minutes, try to list all the questions you had as a child.

Where did the entire beginning of the world and life begin?
Does the sky ever end?
Can I have a puppy?
Why doesn't my daddy love me?
Who is Heavenly Father's father and mother?
How are babies made?
Do I have to go to bed?
Can I keep it? (referring to the many stray animals I brought home)
How deep is the ocean?
What really happened to the dinosaurs?
What's it like to fly like a bird?
What is nothing?
How many stars are in the sky?

My time is up. Hopefully you remembered more questions.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Journal entry 184--Pain

How do you deal with either physical or emotional pain?

I ask this question because right now I am in a lot of pain, shoulder pain that is. I have torn cartilage in my shoulder and am having surgery in March to repair it. So to deal with the pain I take a lot of Motrin and try not to use it, which makes typing difficult! Emotional pain is different. I'm sure everyone has their own way of dealing with pain. Therapy, chocolate, being with friends, writing, being with family (unless they are the cause of the pain) scripture reading or prayer are all some ways people get through difficult times. What do you do?

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Journal entry 183--Gift

What's the greatest gift your mother gave you?

My mother taught me how to be self reliant. Now whether she purposely meant or not, I learned how to care for myself at a young age. After my father left, my mother sort of shut down and my sister, brother and I kind of raised ourselves. I learned to cook at a young age, make my own decisions and go for what I wanted or needed without anyone's help. I learned that if you want something you can only trust yourself to get it. I've since learned to rely on others and trust others. It's been a long process but I think my life is much better. I can't say that I liked the way I grew up, but it certainly taught me to care for myself.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Journal entry 182--Worry

What 3 things did you worry about this past week?

I always worry a bit about the state of our world and where's it's headed.
I worried about being able to pull off this play I'm directing and do a great job.
I also worry about my children and whether they are making good choices, making good friends and are safe.

I try not to worry too much but these are the things that are on my mind more than others. Hopefully you didn't have too much to worry about this past week!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Journal entry 181--Seasons

Finish this sentence: When I think of snow, I think of...

When I think of snow, I think of skiing. I love to ski but unfortunately don't get to do it that often. When my husband and I lived in Utah for awhile and had no children, we went skiing all the time. It was great. Now I'm lucky if we go once a year. Another thing I think of is the time I lived in Buffalo, NY and was bombarded with snow all winter. The snow piles in our backyard were literally up to my thighs and I can't even describe how cold it was. Cold for a native New Yorker, freezing for me, a native Californian! I have to say I'm glad I no longer live in the snow. To me snow is like a grandchild. I like to be around it but when it gets annoying I get always go home to get away.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Journal entry 180--Bad Habits

What bad habits do you have that you would like to change.

I would like to be more organized. I tend to be a scatter brain and it's difficult for me to organize my thoughts so I know what to do first. This is especially true when I have a lot to do. My husband usually helps me through my thoughts by breaking down what needs to be done first. He helps me realize what things need to be done and what things can wait. I try to be organized. I'm trying to go through all my pictures and organize them. In the meantime, my room with all my pictures is a mess! I need help!

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Journal entry 179--Angry!

Write about something that makes you really angry!

I get really angry when my children won't tell the truth! For example, one says the other one hit him. The other one says, "No, I didn't" Whom do I believe? It turns out later that the other one didn't actually "hit" the first child, but "punched" him. See the difference? So now I have to pretend like I'm in a court of law when questioning the child and ask questions like, "Did any part of your body touch your brother's in any way that could cause pain or discomfort?" It's so aggravating but I love them! I swear that child is going to be either a lawyer or a hostage negotiator when he grows up.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Journal entry 178--Food

What's your favorite comfort food. It can either be a food that reminds you of something or just plain makes you feel good. Why do I think chocolate is going to there for a lot of you!

My favorite comfort food is salsa and chips. Any salsa will do--hot, medium, mild, fruity, you name it, I like it! I love when the chips are either really thin and warm or super thick as if homemade. Chips and salsa don't necessarily remind me of anything or anyone, I just like eating them because they taste delicious. I have another comfort food and that's Frosted Mini Wheats. I don't know why but I've been eating them nearly everyday! They're so good with the frosted side floating in ice-cold milk. My kids think I'm addicted to them. They may be right, however, I don't think there's a Mini Wheats anonymous yet.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Journal entry 177--Advice

What is a piece of advice you can share that you learned from your mother?

My mother was full of advice that I respectfully ignored being the all wise teenager that I was. One piece of advice that comes to mind and puts a smile on my face is "don't leave the house without makeup or at least lipstick on. You never know who you might run into." Well, I can say that I do leave the house without makeup and I've never run into anyone famous or an old boyfriend. However, I've followed her advice about wearing lipstick because the older I get, the more transparent my lips become. I'll always remember my mother putting on lipstick in the car. She had at least 3 in her purse at all times. And now if you look in my purse, you'll find the same.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Journal entry 176--What do you do with a dare?

Describe a time when someone dared you to do something. Did you give into the dare or walk away? What was the dare?

When I was in Nursery School, a boy dared me to punch him in the nose. He thought that I was some meek little girl who wouldn't dream of hurting another child. Well I guess he was wrong. I balled up my girlie fist and let him have it. His nose even started bleeding. The teacher soon found out what happened and I got in trouble. I remember skirting around the table trying to act innocent while defending myself. "He told me to do it!" I proclaimed. The teacher didn't buy it and I was sent to time-out.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Journal entry 175--Superbowl

With the superbowl fast approaching, describe how you feel about pro-athletes salaries.

I have always been annoyed that professional athletes get paid so much money. It's not that I think I should get the money, it just seems ridiculous that someone makes millions for playing a sport. What about our teachers? People who are working with and training our children. It all comes down to what am I getting out of this and sports bring in the money. That's why art and music programs are always the first to go in a public school. Athletes make so much because we help fund their salary. Society places such a emphasis on sports instead of music and arts and teaching that sports become the number one priority.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Journal entry 174--Like a...

Start your journal today with the sentence "There is nothing like a..."

There is nothing like a hug. I love getting hugs when I'm sad or congratulated or just because the hugger loves me. My children give great hugs, especially my little 6 year old who likes to give bear hugs that sometimes hurts my ribs! Every night when my husband comes home the first thing he does is hug me. Even if I'm in the middle of making dinner, I still enjoy his hugs.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Journal entry 173--Growing up

Have you changed any behavior or attitudes from when you were younger?

I used to be very contradictory in nature, always looking for an argument. I enjoyed saying things that could possibly lead to a heated debate. I later married someone who was a little more passive than I am and eventually our personalities switched places. Now I'm a lot less argumentative, although I'm still up for a healthy debate! My husband is more aggressive now and speaks his opinion more. As I've grown older, I just get tired of controversy and have learned that you rarely can change someone's mind. I also hate apologizing so I usually try to avoid arguments for fear I might say something I'll regret.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Journal entry 172--Well lived

How would you define a life that is lived well?

A well lived life is one of service. Serving others, you family, children, and friends are what in my opinion is the most important part of life. I believe we're here to learn and grow and teach others so they too can grow and become better people. A well lived life is one where, if you have children, you've been an active parent in their lives. A parent who sets boundaries and teaches them with love so that one day they can venture on there own and raise their children. Do I do all this? I try. Sometimes I have moments of selfishness and want to be served, but for the most part I try. And that's all we can do.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Journal entry 171--Laughter

Describe someone in your life that makes you laugh.

My son, Chris is the most hilarious person I know. He comes up with the most random things to say that always catch me off guard and just make me laugh. He's not afraid to act silly and laugh at himself. Whenever I'm feeling down, I can always count on Chris to perk things up. He's witty and smart and I love to be around him.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Journal entry 170--Passionate 7

Last day to write about something you are passionate about.

Music is my passion. I love playing and listening to music. Music has been in my life since I can remember. My grandmother was an organist and her house held two huge organs and a baby grand piano. I've been playing the piano since I was 4 years old and also played violin, cello, and flute. I'd love to play the harp but will have to do it through my daughter who wants to play it. Music is calming when I'm stressed and motivating when I need to exercise. What kind of music do you listen to?

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Journal entry 169--Passionate 6

Write about something you are passionate about.

I love to travel with my family. My kids are older now so it makes traveling a lot easier and they can do more things with us. For instance last year we went on a cruise with my brother-in-law's family. It was the best vacation I've ever had! We had a great time with the kids--snorkeling, seeing Mayan ruins and going down river in the Belize jungle. Traveling always brings our family closer. My kids get along with each other better, they enjoy being around us and everyone is a little more relaxed. Hmmm...maybe I'd better start planning our next vacation!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Journal entry 168--Passionate 5

Write about something you are passionate about.

I am passionate about my Sundays. Sundays are my day of rest. The day of the week where I do nothing but go to church, take a nap and spend time with my family. It is the most relaxing day of the week for obvious reasons, and my kids have learned to enjoy Sundays as well. By morning my boys are planning out the day which usually involves snuggling by the fireplace and playing a board game or cards. We spend the day reading and resting, which gets us all ready for the week.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Journal entry 167--Passionate 4

Write about something you are passionate about.

I am passionate about my husband! He's my best friend and makes me laugh constantly. I think that I'm a little bit of a strange person and he puts up with all my quirkiness. We've been married for 17 years and still make it a point to go out on a date once a week. He's a great father and I know and the kids know how much he loves them. I grew up without a father around and also with the thought that he didn't love me. That was extremely difficult. I love seeing my husband's relationship with his children. It's helped me see how father's should treat their children.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Journal entry 166--Passionate 3

Write about something you are passionate about.

I am passionate about my children. I want them to grow up in a healthy environment and become successful loving parents to their children. Isn't that what everyone with children wants for them? I want to help them avoid making the same mistakes I did as a child but I know they need to learn from their own mistakes. It's hard sometimes to watch them fail but I know in the long run they will learn. I'm passionate about their health. I don't know what I would do if I lost any of them. They as well as my husband of course are my life and I can't imagine life without them. My kids can drive me crazy but it's usually when I feel out of control. Just and out.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Journal entry 165--Passionate 2

Day 2 to describe something you are passion about.

I love doing genealogy and family history. So much so that I started this blog so that others as well as myself can keep a record of their own personal history. Genealogy is like a treasure hunt or a mystery. You never know what you'll find and what it will lead to. Through genealogy, I've learned that I'm related to Pochahontas. My husband is related to a woman named Rebecca Nurse who was accused and hanged for being a witch in Salem, Mass. It's a way for me to connect to my past and learn about the people I'm related to. Plus I think it's just plain fun!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Journal entry 164--Passionate 1

For each of the next seven days, write about something you are passionate about.

Monday: I am passionate about reading. I love to read and try to read any chance I get without ignoring my children. The only problem with my reading is that if the book is particularly good then I read it non stop, even staying up into the wee hours of the morning. Usually my house will stay a mess if I'm into a good book. I try to mother myself and say, "After you finish your chores, then you may read." However, like my children I don't listen to myself and consequently have a messy house with a lot of books read.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Journal entry 163--Love

Describe what love sounds like to you.

Love is the sound of children laughing or a brand new baby cooing and talking to their mother. It's my children and husband asking me if they can help or playing a game together. Love is the sound of beautiful music, especially piano because that's what I play. It's the sound of my son winning his soccer game and feeling so good about how he did. It's my other son's voice when he gets a great idea and is so excited to tell me that he talks too fast to understand. And then there's my daughter and her sweet voice telling me that she thinks I'm beautiful! Lastly the sound of my husband telling me how much he loves me. It may sound sappy, but to me those are the sounds of love.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Journal entry 162--Connections

How do you stay connected to the people you care about most?

I talk on the phone. I have always been a phone talker. Every day after school, my best friend and I would talk on the phone for hours. This, of course was before texting, email and facebook. Sometimes I miss receiving letters in the mail as opposed to email. It's something to look forward to. Blogging is another way I've found to stay connected to friends. We're able to read about each other's struggles and successes and see their children grow. It still is rather impersonal but certainly works well for long distant friends.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Journal entry 161--Grandfathers part 2

Describe one or both of your grandfathers. What were they like? Did you know them well? What influence did they have on you?

I only knew one of my grandfathers. He was my mother's father and was the true patriarch of our entire family. My grandfather was an entrepreneur who was always thinking of some way to make money. He was the example I had for handling money and taking risks with it. I loved my grandfather, who whenever he took us out for brunch would tell terrible jokes to the waitresses. I felt sorry for them, having to pretend to enjoy these jokes for a good tip. He was funny and would often say, "Oh for gosh sakes." My grandfather was generous and kind to me and I will never forget the way he treated me.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Journal entry 160--Stress

Describe what you do to alleviate stress.

Sleep is always nice to escape from the craziness of stress. A good book, hot cocoa, yummy food and my dog are all the things I use to cope with stress. It also helps to have a good friend to talk to or a blog! The best way I alleviate stress is by trying very hard to avoid it. I used to be a newspaper reporter and constantly had deadlines to keep. Now I stay home to raise my children and I cannot think of a better, stress-free life. This all changes, of course, during Christmas season when the hustle sets in. But like I mentioned earlier, I simply try to avoid stress.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Journal entry 159--Disappointment

Describe how you handle disappointment or bad news.

I don't handle disappointment well at all. I had a lot of disappointments as a child and consequently it didn't teach me how to deal. However, one thing I have learned is prayer helps me the most. Whenever I receive bad or disappointing news I quickly kneel down in prayer and ask for help through this tough time. It doesn't take away the problem but helps me deal with it. I'm able to think a little more clearly, and feel a little bit more peace of mind. That's the best way I've learned to handle difficult situations. Other than that, I turn to chocolate and my children's Wii!

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Journal entry 158--Failure

Describe a time when you flunked or failed at something.

School was always easy and a bit boring for me. I seemed to coast through high school without ever learning proper study skills, so when college came I was in trouble. My first "F" was in my college Chemistry class. I couldn't believe it! Of course, at the time I thought it was all the teacher's fault. "He was a bad teacher," I told my mother, "and therefore I didn't learn the material." Yet the bottom line was I didn't know how to study. I retook the class with a different teacher, corrected my mistakes and poor study skills and got an "A" in the class. Now, I can see this pattern with my own children. They hardly ever study and still get "A's" in their classes. It may take an "F" to wake them up!

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Journal entry 157--Admiration

Describe a quality that a close friend of yours possesses that you admire.

I have a friend that has a lot of hope. No matter how bad her life is, she is always optimistic. She also has a lot of faith and I think that plays into her optimistic attitude. Her faith that things will turn out okay despite how dreary it looks. I wish I had that ability. I lean a bit the other way with a more cynical look at things. I also worry about the "what if's." That is something I'm trying to eliminate and take on my friend's more positive attitude.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Journal entry 156--Gossip

Have you ever been on the giving end or receiving end of gossip?

If I have been a victim of gossip, I've blocked it out of my mind or I never knew. I've had my share of bratty comments made about me from behind my back. Of course these comments have upset me. I can't stand when I'm being represented unfairly or just plain wrong. Ashamedly, I have spoken about someone behind their back, not so much to be mean but to try to understand why they did something. I suppose many of us are afraid to confront each other when there's a problem but that sure would eliminate the back biting.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Journal entry 155--Negative

Describe what you do to fight off negative thinking.

I have some people in my life that are real Debby Downers. Anything I say they have a comeback of something negative. Usually when this happens I try to say nothing but positive things. If this person says that someone is doing something wrong, I counter it with, "I think they are nice or have good intentions." It usually gets the negative person to either change their comments or they stop talking to me because I won't participate with the negativity. It's difficult to be around a constantly negative person because it brings you down and is just plain annoying. Hopefully I'm not like this.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Journal entry 154--Home

What can you find at home and nowhere else?

If everyone is home, I can certainly find my family and that's makes me the happiest. I can find relaxation at home after all the work is done. My cozy bed is found at home and a spiritual peace that helps me through the day. The older I get, the more of a home body I've become. Once I'm home from running errands, I don't want to leave again! Unfortunately there's never a day that I don't have to go somewhere.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Journal entry 153--Mornings

Write about the first thoughts that come to your mind in the morning when you wake up.

My thoughts are usually, "Ughh, is it morning already?" I'm not a morning person and when I wake up, I like to lounge in my covers cuddling with my dog. I have to cuddle with my dog because my husband is a morning person and gets up early. Many times my daughter will crawl under the covers and snuggle which makes it more difficult to get her going. I also think of all the things I have to do that day and try to decide which to start with. So I trudge out of bed and start getting the kids ready for school and then myself. Once I'm moving I'm fine and ready to take on the day.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Journal entry 152--Sundays

Finish the following sentence: To me, Sundays are...

To me Sundays are literally a day of rest. I love Sundays because it's the day I attend church and can feel spiritually uplifted and it's a day to be with my family. After church, we come home, put on cozy clothes and cuddle under a big blanket while watching a movie. We also use that time for playing family games together. There are times when we invite some good friends over for dinner and games or we might go to other family's house for dinner.
Whatever we do, we try to stay together as a family and make Sunday a special day of the week. Our life normally is so busy with soccer, piano, and scouting that I look forward to a day of the week where I don't have to be anywhere except church and that's a place I want to be.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Journal entry 151--Illegal

Have you ever done something illegal? Did you know it was illegal at the time of the crime?

I did the kiddie crime of taking a piece of candy from the bulk candy section of the grocery store when I was 5 years old. Once my mother found out, she hauled me back to the store and I returned the candy and apologized. I never took another piece of candy. The worse illegal activity I did was when I was 13 years old. Now let me preface this by saying that at the time I honestly didn't think I was doing something wrong and illegal. It was just a typical clueless teenager time for me. On a Saturday, my friend and I rode our bikes to our Jr. High School and there we found a piece of chalk. What else could we do with a piece of chalk except write on the back of the lockers, "I love Brad" or "Brad is a babe." I had a big crush on this boy and I guess I wanted to tell the world. Although I didn't leave my name. Looking back on the occasion through adult eyes, I can see how terrible I was for doing this regrettable act. Now I would faint if I found out that my children ever vandalized!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Journal entry 150--Moms

Is there anything your mother did while you were growing up that you swore you'd never do with your children, but actually do?

I've copied a lot of my mother's sayings and facial expressions. Funny words like "honyak"or "skiwampus" seems to infiltrate my vocabulary often. I'm particular about the way my bed is made and presents need to be wrapped tight and neat just like my mother did. I also have a look I give to both my kids and husband when they've been naughty, which is the same look my mother gave to me. And if my dog is being troublesome, I usually say an exasperated "Awwhh" in a tone of disgust, which again I picked up from mom. However, my mother died when I was 20 years old, so my children have never known her. So I try to say and do things that she did and point out to them that their grandma used to say this or that. I figure it's one way for my kids to know their grandma.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Journal entry 149--Resolutions

When was the last time you kept your New Year's resolutions? Do you make resolutions at the beginning of each year?

I rarely keep my New Year's resolutions. I don't know if it's that I make the resolutions too difficult to keep or if I'm just lazy. Yet, I can't stay I don't try. This past year, I've tried to find my great grandfather's personal history and who his parents were. It's been a very difficult journey. He was from Sweden and had an extremely common name so that is presenting a huge challenge for me. Another resolution I've never kept is getting a bedroom set. My husband and I have gone 11 years with a bed frame. We just keep pushing it aside for other fixers around the house. Maybe this year? I can only hope.