Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Monday Musings on a Tuesday

Here I am!  I didn't forget!  I like blogging!  And I like you (whoever you are!).

It's chilly out there!  Fall came in quickly.  And I love it.  I'm wearing some Lularoe leggings two days in a row under my skirt.  Speaking of which... I saw this.  This should say "when you realize how many Lularoe groups you've been invited to".

We are getting our family picture taken quickly tomorrow before our senior goes off for her senior pictures.  Picking out coordinating but not matchy clothes for our group of five has not been fun trying to figure out.  I almost hoped it would pour rain so we could delay it a week.  Do you think I could lose five pounds tonight before we have our picture taken tomorrow?  I hear when you are in front of a camera you look bigger than you are.

I had a massage last week.  As I laid there in my semi-conscious state I realized it seemed to be the same music that is played at funeral homes.  They must think it is soothing.  I wonder if disagreements would immediately be settled between the MYP if I quickly turned it on?  It's worth a shot!  Plus they might forget their issue and focus on their mother that has mental problems.  Heh.

The internet was down one whole evening here at the Chairman and Co.  It was nice and horrible at the same time.  Nice because everyone wasn't tied up with it.  Horrible because 99.9% of the homework assigned requires the world wide web.  So since mothers have all the answers, I was asked repeatedly why and when the internet would be restored.

I picked up a new modem and as I was driving home I wondered what just was inside that little box of magic?  What's the difference between a modem and a router?  What's inside a router for goodness sake?  These are all rhetorical questions because quite frankly, I don't want the answer.  It would make my brain seize.  

I just returned from a trip to Costco.  I quickly ran in for a return and to pick up three things.  I walked out nearly an hour later with a cart of $205 worth of goods.  I hate that place.  And love it.  There was a lady there that had perfume so strong I could smell her at least 30' away.  I wonder what that would be like to smell so strongly of perfume and that's all you'd smell wherever you go.  I wonder if she smelled the chocolate chip cookies baking like I did?  

And then there's Willie!  Who's Willie you ask?  He's a little dog that come to our house for a weekend visit since his doting parents were out of town.  When I first saw him, I thought he was quite honestly, the ugliest little thing.  Then he came to stay with us and I forgave him is looks and fell pretty hard for the little thing.  Pugs LOVE people.  Or at least he loved me.  If I even looked like I was going to provide a lap he was up next to me before I could get my bottom sat down.  He'd blink slowly at me gazing deep in my eyes.  And he'd snore worse than any old man you've come across.   The Chairman said he looked like a cross between a dog and a bat and a pig.   I miss him already.
He never asked for an invite.  Laps are made to be sat on.

Yes, they got along splendid

I was eating potato chips

Yep.  No matter what you were doing. 

Yesterday we were at a college fair for our high schoolers.  It was nice but made me wish in a way we were looking at preschools instead.  That just happened yesterday didn't it?

So have I bored you enough?  Lets see what's on my camera roll.  

Monday, September 19, 2016

Monday Musings

A picture is worth a thousand words.  I sure hope so because all I'm going to give you this time is one picture.

I've just returned some from extra-special days.  "Conbenchion" like one of our MYP used to call it.  We sit on chairs now so it's probably not so accurate.

There were a lot of moments when my human brain said, 'this would make such a nice picture'.  But it isn't the time nor the place to take pictures so I'll try to share with words.

Though there's a huge crowd, there's a beautiful picture of working together.  Fitly-joined.  It almost seems no one is the 'boss'.  And yet, the work of feeding, housing, and encouraging a large group seems almost effortless - though we know that is far from the truth.

It is beautiful to see large groups of YP standing around just sharing and laughing and being in the present.  It is also beautiful to not see any personal electronic devices out and people "hiding" behind them.

I loved to see a young person gently guide a very elderly person into the diner.  They weren't related at all.  I also loved to see an older person help guide another one that was yet older over a small hill.  They both were 'helps'.

Again, there was a mass of young singers blending their voices in sweet harmony.  For some reason my eyes always want to leak when I hear them.

I'm not sure how they do it, but the meals are just utterly wholesome and delicious and plentiful.  When you look into the cookhouse, it's as if there's a bunch of worker bees buzzing around making it all happen.  And most of the time there are huge grins on their faces while they do it.

Here is the picture that I'll share.
I think it's ten years now that I've been a part of the "Loo Crew".  The ones that work by my side change from year to year, but the helpfulness is the same.  I posted this picture on FB and there's been over 100 "likes" and lots of thoughtful comments.  I wasn't looking for the comments because I fear I'm losing my reward with each additional comment.  

The reason I posted it was because one little girl came in and said, 'it smells like Skittles in here!'.  I was so happy as it was Saturday night and usually things aren't so "Skittly" after we've had approximately 400 ladies use the facilities many times a day.  Thankfully we stayed ahead of the game and hopefully it smelled like the strawberry Skittles.  Those are my favorite. 

In a world of so much negativity, it is so wonderful to be in a place that only focuses on the positive and all that is for us.  I'm thankful for quiet resting places.  And I'm thankful for the pictures that will feed my mind and heart for the next year. 

Now off to more mundane things like folding the last four loads of laundry and rushing to the store to fill the fridge and pantry once again.  

Happy week ahead to you!

Monday, September 12, 2016

Monday Musings on a Monday!

Greetings my friends, acquaintances, or perfect strangers!  I have just a wee bit of time to Muse, so Muse I must.  There's some squash cooling on the counter to scrape off the rind.  There's a substantial snack to feed the starving MYP that will be pulling into the driveway in a few minutes.  And there's a dog to pick up from grooming soon.  I hope she smells better than when I left her.

In random order, here's a bit of Muse.

* I have a weird ability with license plates.  I usually can list off the three letters of the license plate of most of our friends and neighbor's cars.  And when I happen to see one of them at a store or on the road I immediately know it is them.  The other day we were turning into a business and I said, "So and so are here!  The YP riding along said, "how do you know?  There's lots of cars just like that one."  Well my sweet, you didn't read the license plate did you?

*  Do any of you write down things you just did on your planner or things-to-do-list just so you can cross them off?  I do.

* What is your most frequent emoji used on your cell phone?  I think it may or may not be indicative of the type of person you are.  Mine is the emoji that just has the sweet smile.  But a close second is the eyeballs looking sideways.  That's probably because I'm spying on a lot of people.

* I like writing letters and notes to send to people through the mail.  I'm not sure why, but I always feel so satisfied licking the envelope.  That may or may not be my next year's resolution - to write to people more.

* The ants are not just marching one by one and two by two, they are marching by the tens in my kitchen.  I've about had it with them.  Any suggestions are welcome.

* There's a theory out there that people that read blogs or watch vlogs (video blogs) get depressed because they think their life isn't as wonderful and perfect as the ones they are looking in at.  Well yesterday was one of 'those' days.  There was a lot of angst in the house.  There was conflict.  There were some tears.  And there was a few hours in the night that their mother was thinking that parenting some times can be very, very hard.  You see it's kind of like parenting whiplash.  The rewards, encouragement, discipline, etc. that works for one might be the exact opposite of what works for another.  Don't get me wrong.  Our MYP are wonderful.  But they aren't perfect and as parents, we aren't either.  We're all learning in this journey of life and I just want to let you know that life is very real here too.

* On a happier note, this week's weather looks so lovely!  Most weeks that is a very significant statement because who doesn't love comfortable, fall days?  Well this week will be just wonderful because of all that goes on in an old machine shed that has been transformed to a very special place.  We all so look forward to those days and I'm so glad the MYP anticipate it all like they did when they were three.

* If you come, stop by the bathroom and tell me hello!  If you're a man, please wait until I carry the garbage out.  Thanks for your understanding.  I don't want to hear blood-curdling screams while I'm working.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Tuesday Musings

I hope you all give me a break for not Musing on Monday.  It was a holiday after all!  And I may have been lazy on Labor Day.  Go figure.

Holidays are a bit off-settling.  It seems for three day weekends, each and every day I wake up thinking it is Sunday.  Well once it was anyway.  

It's hot today!  I refuse to turn on the a/c since it is September 6.  However, the humidity and the temperatures and a few hot flashes thrown in for a good measure are making it steamy.

So backing up!  I headed to the Hawkeye state as I previously noted with my sweet sister.  It was everything I hoped it to be and much, much more.  I got to see old friends (she's really not that old), lots of cows and pigs, lots of special people gathered at a special place, and lots of extended family and more friends.  Yes it was that good.  It seems that the two short days I had away did much for my heart.  And for that, I'm grateful.  (I didn't ask for permission for any of these pictures to be posted.  So if you are reading this and don't want to be here, just let me know!)
This lady and I were into lots of mischief in the past.  Our lives are very different now, but deep down, we still kinda think alike.

behind the scenes of a very special picture

The man on the right was a huge influence to me as a growing teen.  I also owe the fact that I can play 412 hymns to him as he made me learn them so I could play a little pump organ for his meetings. 

and the next generation
 Then it was the first day of school!  This is one of those 'last times'.  This is the last time I'll take all three together.  We now have a Sr, Jr, and Freshman.  Bwah.  Where did my babies go?
So yesterday started off by me saving a life.  No, no one was choking here.  Well on second thought, yes!   Someone was indeed choking here.  The cat was choking on bird feathers as he walked up to the deck.  So I went out and poked at him until he meowed and the little finch flew out of his mouth and away from the terror.  I think I've saved four birds' lives this summer alone.  Then we did some dog sitting for the neighbor dog and then enjoyed a campfire.  
Goldens and labs will sit very still if there's treats involved

Son #1 brought out some hotdogs to roast and he left them on the ground right by Lisi.  Don't tell son #1, but Lisi may or may not have drooled on his hot dog.  Thankfully, she didn't eat it.
So this is probably enough!  I was already thanked for having the bathrooms so clean next week at our convention.  Whew.  Talk about pressure now!  I hope I lie up to expectations.

Have a good week!

Monday, August 29, 2016

Monday Musings

Good Monday Musings!  I've got a 'to-do' list a mile and a quarter long, but will quickly pen up a Muse for your aMusement.  Or mostly mine.

We've had some super-de-duper wonderful last days of summer.  There's been times with friends and just our family and some necessary work followed by unnecessary groans from some MYP.  But it gets done and the smiles return.

Son #1 inherited a little fishing boat that he now captains.  He is most pleased.  And if he sees I posted this picture of him on his little boat he will be most displeased.  So please do not tell him you saw him on this forum.  But those arms though...
I just returned a bathroom scale.  After I got it home, I realized we had one that worked nearly as good so I thought I'd save the $19.99 and return it.  The man at Costco taking my return asked if anything was wrong so I said, "I didn't like the number".  He paused and then looked at me and then realized I was joking and HAHAHA!  I couldn't help myself.

I was on a hunt for some good jerky and I saw that the price/pound for jerky for dogs was quite a bit cheaper than for people.  I was tempted to throw it in a Ziploc and see if anyone noticed a quality difference.

I charted the moods of daughter #1 and 2 this week one day on the fridge.  It was fun for me and slightly irritating and slightly funny for them.

Lisi celebrated National Dog Day.  Ok I lied.  She had no clue it was NDD, but I took her picture anyway.  You'd not know it by her soft, sweet face, but she almost nipped me in the hinder just before this picture was taken because she wanted a walk very very badly.

I was up at preps last Saturday.  And yes, I had the privilege of cleaning the bathrooms before everyone got there at convention time where - you guessed it - I'll be cleaning the bathrooms.  But there was an immediate crisis!  Some keys are missing for the paper roll dispensers.  So I hopped on the internet and got replacements ordered and they were actually shipped before I left the grounds.  Technology is weird.  And now I see why janitors like to have a ring full of jingling keys.  They are mostly necessary I reckon.  Doesn't this look squeaky clean?  Or maybe not.

We had our extra daughter here for the entire weekend again.  She's sugar and spice and everything nice - just like her parents.  She and daughter #2 decided to make a humongous project of decorating cupcakes.  They made memories and a huge mess.  I found frosting on a wall, the faucet, the side of the fridge, and on the wastebasket drawer.  They mentioned in passing there was a bit of a frosting fight.  Really?  I never would have guessed.

So the reason for my mile and a quarter 'to-do' list is that I'm hitting the highway tomorrow with my sister for a bitter-sweet occassion.  A family member has passed away and I just felt very moved to make an effort to go to the funeral.  You see I have a very, very small extended family.  And because of that, we've all tended to be very close - especially that several of them are laboring in far-away states and we cannot all be together.  But this time we can be and will be.  Yes, every level surface will not pass the white-glove test before the study meeting here Wednesday night.  Yes, the floors might have some crumbs.  Yes, the Chairman and the MYP will miss me (or so I like to think).  But some day down the road, I don't want to wish I had gone.  Life and relationships are so much more important than a pristine house.  It will be so very nice and so very comforting despite the circumstances.

So have a good rest of the week!

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Time to talk!

Or blog.  I realize it isn't Monday, but somehow my day filled up fast.  So it'll have to be Tuesday for my talk.  Maybe I'll listen some day.

Sweet corn.  Our family enjoys it all through the year.  It is one of those things that simply do not taste as good if store bought.  I dread the 'corn day'.  So this year I would simply purchase a few extra dozen each time we were to have sweet corn.  I didn't have a horrible long day in the kitchen over a boiling kettle, and I also have all the meals I need for the coming year.  Win/Win if you ask me.

School is starting next week.  Someone recently asked me, 'are you excited school starts next week?'.  Honestly?  No.  Despite a grueling double-foot surgery and a long recovery, this has been one of my favorite summers.  Why you ask?  I see the day on the horizon when there won't be MYP coming and going through our doors - ours and others.  Yes, I realize they'll hopefully still be around.  But not as minors marching through the school years.

Some years ago on this blog (I don't have the time to link to the post) I wrote about the "last times".  There was the last time I made a bottle.  The last time I changed a diaper.  The last time I packed a meeting bag.  The last time I had to give baths.  The last time I gave a buzz cut to a little boy.  The last time I combed her hair (oh never mind... I still do that sometimes).  Well this time I can see the last times coming.  So I'm going to enjoy these times.  Even if the size 11 shoes are in my way sometimes.

I'm famous!  You knew that already though didn't you.  Didn't you???   Heh.  Anyway, about six weeks ago I submitted a picture I took to the newspaper.  They responded they might use it.  I half-heartedly would check most days and some days not.  Well last week I flipped the paper over to check the weather and there it was!  My picture!  No one has come forward asking for an autograph.  So I might as well put my pen away.

Our welcome mat has been very busy the past week as many have crossed over it entering the house.  I like it that way.  On Sunday, we had a couple tables full of friends.  One of the ladies that came is from India visiting her daughter and family who happen to be our good friends.  Her tongue has a strong accent to us mid-westerners.  Her dress is different than 'western' dress.   Her background and experiences are very different than ours.  But then she gave her testimony.  And then as she was leaving she gave me a kiss just below my ear on my neck and said, 'you are another daughter to me'.  And do you know what?  She felt just like another mother the way she said it.  Yes, we are one family.

So this is enough talking for today.  I'll pull up my camera roll and see if there's anything you'd be interested in.  Happy end of summertime to you too!

Monday, August 15, 2016

Monday Musings

Yes you're absolutely right.  I didn't blog last week.  I think it's a first in probably a year or so.  It didn't seem to affect many people's lives, so that's comforting.  However I missed you, and writing, and so blog I must!

Can you tell anything is different?  I'm guessing not.  From the outside, we look the same.  From the inside, we feel so very different.  We were just at an extra-special place for a bit over four days.  The rains came down in both a natural and spiritual way.  And my heart feels like the flooded ground we walked on.

This place is a magnet for young people.  If my math serves me right, I believe that nearly 2/3 of the crowd was under the age of 30.  I find that just astounding and wonderful and it makes the future look so bright in a very dark world.

As you can imagine, the singing was just beautiful.  I love singing.  I love singing parts.  And I pretty much am sure my favorite thing to do on this earth is to sing with the 1000 other people.  We were surrounded by young ones in our seats that have beautiful voices.  It was heavenly.

I must not have looked very good last year.  This year I was there sporting my new glasses and I received about four or five compliments each day on how the glasses made me look so good.  (heh)

I had a lot of family there.  In fact of my near-extended family, we were missing only three.  It was really, really nice to be with them all.  However, I had incredible visits and feelings with so many different ones that don't share a drop of my blood or my name.  And they felt like family.  I love that feeling.

I met several blog readers that came to ask if I was the Chairman's Wife.  That makes me nervous for some reason.  I hope I don't waste your time.

The Chairman had to miss a little bit of the time there.  It seems like when you have the one you love by your side you have more confidence.  At least I'm that way.  I was so glad when he returned.

So the real reality of it is that I have a lot to do today.  I see a stack of bills that need to be tended.  I have a camper to clean out.  I need to run get a few groceries.  I need to vacuum the kitchen since our pet sitter brought in some grass.  I have approximately seven loads of laundry to do.  I'd show you a picture of the clothes and bedding piles but I don't want to air out my dirty laundry.

Here's a few pics taken in the camper one night.  I don't like taking pictures on the grounds so I don't have much to share that way.

Have a great week ahead!  We have two weeks until school starts so we need to hit a few 'bucket list' items before that comes!