Monday, December 12, 2005

Snow Pics

Toby and Landon having fun in the snow. These
were taken
about a
week ago
when we
had a
white and
fluffy snowfall.
It's all almost
gone today
thanks to the
40+ degree
weather we've
had over the

Court and
posing for a
shot. Landon
didn't want
to smile for
the pictures.
I think he
just didn't
want to
take time
for pics --
the snow
was too fun,
as you can
see in the
next picture...
Landon's first sled rides! He had so much fun!

Thursday, December 08, 2005

Canon Perkins

I ran across this site yesterday and have had this sweet child on my mind ever since. He's the same age as Landon but has a rare liver condition. It's a sad but hopeful story. Canon also already has a younger sibling so I can only imagine the life style his parents must have right now -- what with a sick child and a little baby. Keep them in your prayers.

Monday, December 05, 2005

On Toddlers Eating Baby Cereal

You know your kids were born close together when they're both eating baby cereal out of the same bowl.

That was my bright revelation last night when I fixed Janae a nice gooey bowl of mushy rice cereal and proceeded to feed her and Landon started asking for some. He insisted on feeding himself so I was relieved that even though he was eating baby cereal, he was acting half grown up about it.

At one point, I'd reach down to put a spoonful of goo into Janae's open mouth only to feel the bowl in the other hand kinda get bumped. I glanced at it and noticed Landon was running his finger through it.

I pulled the bowl away and looked down at the spoon going into Janae's mouth and saw that she was biting down on the end of the spoon. As I'd push the cereal into her mouth, it would all run off the handle end of the spoon and fall down on her shirt.

While trying to catch that, I set the cereal bowl back on Landon's tray, assuming he'd go back to feeding himself with the spoon. When I looked back at him, he was using the gooey substance as a dip for his "hint of lime" chips. He sat there and dipped in style until his chips were gone.

Janae would holler for more and Landon would oblige his spoon until I could pry another little glob between her rosy lips. She wanted that stuff like crazy but wouldn't open her mouth up any more than enough to just bite the end of the spoon. Her mouth was surrounded by my attempts to get the food into her mouth.

Then we ran out of one bowl so I had to make more. Both kids were worried about that but I soon set them at ease when I brought back a nice full bowl. Baby cereal was one of the best inventions: you can make it fast and you can make as much as you need and if you don't, you can throw out the leftovers because that's what the directions say. It makes for a cleaner fridge that way and less hassle. Talk about fast food.

Eventually, Landon was disinterested in the snack and Janae wouldn't crack open her lips at all -- her little jaw was so firmly set. So we cleaned everyone up and put our snack away.

When I was first mixing up the food for Janae, I had told Toby that Landon was too old for baby cereal. He can eat regular cereal now and doesn't need that gooey stuff. While I sat down at the table to feed Janae, Landon started begging for something. Come to find out, he loves that stuff and does still need it.

So, either my kids were born too close together or else one doesn't want to grow up. Or, maybe it's both. At least he can feed himself though so I guess we're on a start.

Sunday, December 04, 2005


In case you can't tell, I'm on a blinky binge. I told Toby it's my new blog background; like a new stationery or something.

It was a valuable computer language crash-course to learn how to interpret that gibberish when inserting all those silly icons into my Template. I never knew these things "< >" could be so important. (It took me about two minutes to find them on my keyboard just now.)

My two favorite blinky sites were this one and this one. I also like this one for the variety. And this one was absolutely adorable.

Most blinkie sites will urge you not to steal their bandwidth. At first I didn't know what that meant and thought I was guilty of it until I read that if you are saving the blinkies to your hard drive (right click, save as...) and then uploading them somewhere else (like before putting them on your website, message board, blog, etc., then you're doing it right. It all scared me at first but then I realized that I was already snagging them legally and had no reason to fear the internet cops. But good information to keep in mind nonetheless.

You can roll your eyes at my blinkies or enjoy them. Either way, I won't give a blink.

At least I'm more female...

It said my brain is 80.00% Female, 20.00% Male. Hmmmm....

Your Brain is 80.00% Female, 20.00% Male

Your brain leans female
You think with your heart, not your head
Sweet and considerate, you are a giver
But you're tough enough not to let anyone take advantage of you!

What Gender Is Your Brain?

Friday, December 02, 2005

What's Your Occupation?

This evening has been quite calorie reducing for me. They should really come up with a fancy exercise name for a person who makes frequent jumps off their office chair and then jogs, sprints or runs out of the room about twenty feet to save the life of a small individual. If there was such an exercise, I could fill in the "exercise daily" section of the forms you fill out when you go to the doctor's office.

For now, I have to leave that section blank because my kids keep me too busy doing the office chair sprint exercise.

I've been sitting at my desk surfing around on the web, checking out my regular sites and writing emails. At least, I'm trying to.

After making repeated trips to the nether regions of our house looking for a 2 1/2' male child, I'll sit down only to have to lunge across the room to retrieve a UFO (unknown foreign object) from my woman child's mouth. Then a boy with the above description will come tripping into the office with a handful of large crackers (or "car-tures" as he calls them) and will march over to the fridge to get a pop.

When he made a find behind my desk (there's about a 2" gap between the desk and wall) and pulled out a small lego, I dove my hand to grab the choking hazard from my son only to hear a choking sound coming from my girl on the other side of me. I kind of did a fast motion sway between the two of them while trying to decide who's life to save first. I can't remember who I grabbed first or if I had to use my toes and legs for that one as well as my fingers and arms.

All I know is there was a cracker and that small hazardous lego sitting on my desk when the dust cleared. There was also a collection of cracker crumbs balancing precariously on my space key that eventually slid down into the keyboard. I don't where those came from.

As we speak, both children are playing peaceable in the pop fridge rearranging cans. There's a collection of crackers and large legos on the floor behind me. Only the sound of computers can be heard right now even though there are two adventurous little people cruising around the room. Well, the sounds of moving pop cans can be heard too. As well as an occasional "whoa" by the larger child followed by a wail from the tinier person.

I'm glad pop cans are somewhat kid proof when it comes to opening them or else we'd have a mess right now. The boy is stacking and moving a collection of them and the girl is chewing on her own personal can. There have been frequent wails and exchanges of cans between the two youngsters only I think the exchanges aren't all quite completed because that baby seems to be getting the short end of the stick.

I should also be able to fill out the "occupation" part of those forms with something other than SAHM. I'm also a paramedic, child care provider, chef, wet nurse and psychiatrist.

Yes, psychiatrist.

At least a half dozen times tonight my husband has asked me what's wrong with our child that favors a tendency to wail. Either it would take an interpreter or psychiatrist to figure it out.

Since they haven't come up with a "language" that babies use, I guess it would take a psychiatrist until that interpreter comes around.

And, since the wailing child happens to be mine then automatically I should know what's wrong, right? Well, compared to the rest of her parents, I think she's crying because something didn't go her way.

I guess if I had a cool can of pop all to myself just for me to chew on, I'd cry too when my bossy big brother took it away from me. You wouldn't think it would take a professional to figure that out but maybe it does if you're the dad.

Well, I just dug some moist cracker crumbs out of the corner of my female child's left eye and with the sleepiness that has come over her, I have to assume that she's ready for bed. Since I'm the mom, I should know that at least.

The night is coming to an end and it is time for kisses and snuggles down into warm beds. Troubles and wails cease for a time and tummies are full and diapers are clean.

And moms can sleep (or sit here and type or surf) without figuring out all the problems her children come up with.

I still think I should be called a psychiatrist.

Some cute pics of our kids

Or should that be, "Some pics of our cute kids" instead? Whatever.


There. That might sound more humble; less proud perhaps.

I've promised everyone and their mother that I would post pictures but I haven't gotten to it until now. Hope you enjoy them everyone and your mom!
Thank You

Landon wasn't enjoying the leaves very much -- as you can tell by the unpleased look on his face.

Janae on the other hand, did like them. She liked them so much, I found a little piece of one in her diaper a couple days later. As you can tell from looking at her, she is a starving child and has to forage to stay alive.

What a look on that face! Landon loves driving his car and spends hours going on trips... or wherever his car takes him. Yeah, I guess you could call that a trip -- even if it's just up and down the side walk.

Janae all smiles for a picture. Just don't walk away from her or else that smile stops.

Bathtime Buddies!

Cuddly kids in their jammies (or "dimmies" as Landon calls them)

Janae all ready to get her picture taken

I have to stick this one in too so you can see some of her little pearlies. She has almost 8 now and she's not even 8 months old yet!

Landon talking to Beemoo (and Beemoo is Auntie Britt, for those of you who don't know that yet.)

And finally, Janae and her Daddy

Thursday, December 01, 2005

Before and After Pics of our office

We renovated our front porch and turned half of it into an "official" office and the other side is a open/railed porch.

(sorry, not a good pic -- will update soon as now the whole front is finished.)

These are befores of the office. Actually, the office was in an entirely different room than it is now.

Our old office was a thorn in my flesh since it was well unorganized and not quite the kind of room you'd like to take a picture of. I realized now as I searched my My Pictures folder that I have no plain old pics of the office. You'll have to do with these. The little boy in one of the pics above, is my husband's little adopted brother, Jeremiah. The above pictures of the office was Toby's desk. Here's a picture from the vicinity of where mine was: (sorry, not a good pic!)

And now, here's the new office:

(my desk above and Toby's desk below)

decor detail below

This is what it looks like from the doorway

Before and After Pics of our bedroom

Here's a picture of our room before I did the redecorating:

And here it is after:

Power Of Suggestion

Yesterday, Toby came home for lunch with a look in his eyes that said I'm-ready-to-conquer-the-world-if-my-finances-are-okay as he punched away at his calculator wrist watch. He didn't seem too interested in lunch as he wandered around the house with a tape measure and pencil and a much too small stocking cap on his head.

After making his food, I searched the house looking for him and found him measuring our room.

"Are you ready to get new carpet, Hun?" was his greeting as he scrawled another number on his little stick-it pad.

"Carpet?" I asked.

He looked at me with a pleased grin and with a note of triumph in his voice said, "Yep."

My only wise response was, "Are you sure we can afford it?" As soon as I said it I wanted to suck the words out of the air and into my stomach, even if they would've given me a stomach ache to eat them.

I should know that before Toby even puts gas in the car, he makes sure our budget can accommodate it. And to put carpet in our house would give him even more reason to analyze and critique our finances.

He overlooked my question and informed me of the allotted allowance he had set aside for this new project and where exactly the money was coming from and how it would be handled.

I raised my eyebrows in shock and excitement and went back downstairs to stir the soup, trying to adjust to this new idea.

Eventually he came down stairs and I could hear him counting the steps as he made his way down. As he went to the table, he jotted down another number and ate his dinner while he read a book.

In no time, he was done and standing at the door with the pencil and paper and stocking cap and telling me to get the baby so we could run to the carpet store and pick out carpet.

I should know by now that when Toby sets his mind to do something, he goes all the way. But, for some reason when he was measuring the rooms, I inwardly assumed I'd have a couple days to digest the plans. He wasn't even giving me an hour to think about it.

I was thrilled to go pick out the carpet right then. I love picking out carpet and other such house hold items and to be kept waiting in order to digest an idea, well, sometimes that can be annoying. We went and picked out a few samples and came home.

Later that night, I knew the time had to come to finalize our choices. I washed my hair and showered, put on a pleasant night gown and arranged the sample boards across our bedroom floor. Of course, I would've washed me and made me clean had we not been deciding on carpet but since we were doing both that night, I made sure to plan them together. Adds to the effect somehow.

Toby sauntered in and informed me right up front that whatever I chose would be fine with him.

I assured him I knew that but would really appreciate his suggestions. I don't like making such life changing choices by myself -- like picking out carpet that we'll have to live with for the next 25 years.

He put his chin in his hands and intently peered at the samples for our room. I pointed at one and he agreed. We moved to the hall's carpet choices.

We both pointed to the same one at the same time and deemed that one chosen for the hall and steps. We moved on.

As we picked the final choices for the other two rooms, he'd say one choice; I'd say another. We'd discuss differences and details and then make a choice. Then I'd pick another one and then he'd point out yet another one. Finally, we were moving to actual colors (like blue, green, etc.) even though from the beginning we had both agreed that staying neutral (like tan, grey, etc.) would be best.

Just out of the blue, I pointed to a pleasant blue Frieze
. He immediately liked it and said to go with that for what will be Landon's room. I said something to the effect of what if our next child is a boy; then Janae would get that room. (It's the smallest room and would suit one child better than two.)

"What if the next one is a girl?" Was the response I got -- as if there could be another sex besides boy or girl.

And then he said, "That's a nice color; it would work for a girl... it's kind of a grey blue color."

It was a nice color and I was half tempted. But what he said next only confused me.

"It really isn't blue anyway; it looks grey. Yeah, it's a grey color," he finished with.

I blinked my eyes and searched the very fibers of the carpet for some obvious strand of grey.

"That's as blue as you can get, Hun... sorta a grey blue shade but everybit of it is blue." I couldn't see how he didn't get it.

"Fine," he said as he shrugged his shoulders. "You pick out the carpet... this is why you should just do it yourself because you don't like my suggestions." And he went back to his book, as if the fact that I didn't agree with his all his choices made it so the previous agreeable choices were obsolete.

"Well, my dear Hun, remember I said I wanted your suggestions?" and I really did mean it. "I didn't tell you that you had to pick out the carpet -- I just wanted your suggestions."

He kind of nodded his head and agreed and was relieved the weight of the carpet was off his shoulders. He pointed at another color with his toe and then suggested we should just go to bed and look at them in the morning. The light would be different and would make the colors more obvious.

I agreed on that suggested choice and we headed to bed.

Sometimes power of suggestion is the most effective; other times, well, a suggestion is just another choice. If only some people would realize that.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

Pop Fridge

It's been one of those days where routines and rituals haven't gotten out of bed yet. And since its already after lunch, a "normal" day probably isn't going to happen today.

It's blowing snow and wind outside up to 50 mph so that means my roofing husband is staying on the ground today. Actually, he's staying indoors and taking a vacation. And when he takes a vacation, then I think I should too.

If only the kids would think so though.

After brunch (we skipped breakfast altogether and had it for an early lunch instead) Landon sat in his high chair dissecting marshmallows. He'd take the tiny pieces and stuff them up his right nostril. After pulling a whole string of them out I made sure he blew his nose into a kleenex for good measure. I could see a white glob way up there (about where the nostril enters the head) and I really don't want to find out what marshmallows can do to a little guy's brain. The glob came out thankfully.

Toby and I had just been talking over our meal about what a genius Landon is. I think he was listening and decided today would be a good day to stuff his nose with marshmallows.

After cleaning him up, Janae was wailing on the floor with blood trickling out one corner of her mouth. I grabbed her and dashed to the bathroom and wiped it off. No poking or prying would indicate where the blood was coming from. I think she just poked herself or bit her lip or something. She's still alive and doing fine so I'm not too worried. She was playing with her brother for about 2 minutes so that explains a lot.

As I sat down at my computer just now, Landon asked for his bag of crayons -- what's left of them. Janae was sucking on one last night (unbeknownst to me) and promptly dissolved a bright violet pink crayon in her mouth. The quanity in the bag seems to be dwindling and now I know where it's going. At least she doesn't get them stuck up her nose.

So, I handed him his bag only to have him take it and hand it back. I closed the bag and gave it to him. He took it and handed it back. I opened the bag and set it on the floor behind me. He took it this time and kept it.

Toby just asked me if crayons are the greatest idea for Landon. I think they are because it keeps him occupied and out of trouble. Toby then asked about him marking on the walls but so far Landon just sets them on my desk, then on a table, then on the floor and then across the room to the shelves then back on the file cabinet. I've noticed his favorite place to play with them is on Toby's pop fridge.

Yes, Pop Fridge.

We just finished our new office and of all things that had to be in here was a fridge for Toby's pop. Now I'll no longer hear the endearing, "Hun, can you grab me another pop," from my dear husband.

Most women probably wouldn't like it if their hubby took advantage of them and always made them get up and go get the old man a can of pop but I've always liked it. Even when I was big and pregnant and could barely waddle anywhere, Toby would ask me to get him a pop. And I'd happily do it.

Now he can just swivel around in his chair and swing the little door open and grab a pop. The only way I know he ever wanted a pop is by the sound of the closing fridge door. By then it's too late to get it for him.

I told him before he moved it in here that I would fill a cooler full of pop every morning for him and set it in the office. He just shrugged his shoulders and went back to his book.

It's nice to be needed and to be a helpmeet to my husband but the stupid fridge is taking my place. He's living like a bachelor again. His mom tells me that when he was single, he actually bought this little fridge and kept pop in it right next to his desk. I used to ask what happened with that idea but smiled to myself that I knew why he didn't need it anymore: he has me.

In our vows, I remember saying something like "forsaking all others..." and I wonder how Toby would like it if I bought a fancy little machine to do all our yard work and he wouldn't be able to impress me with his own abilities and do the task knowing how proud I'd be of him. With this machine, I could have it all done for him by the time he got home from work, but he'd be out one whole chance of impressing me and showing me that he loved me enough to mow the lawn.

And he'd have that much more time to sit around and read books and drink pop.

Even when we're on "vacation" like today, it's nice for me to have a purpose and goal in life by getting Toby a pop. Not today. I have all this extra time to blog about him now. (it's my way of getting back at him.)

The other day, I put several sippy cups of juice for Landon in the fridge. I figured that I could somehow incorporate this fridge into our family by involving our son into it. You know, kind of a father/son thing. At least that way it would be serving more of a purpose and not a breach between my son's mother and father.

I was glad to see him playing with his crayons on it today. The little white fridge is getting marked up with blues, pinks and greens but that's what makes it look less bachelorish. Not that there's anything wrong with being bachelorish -- I did marry a bachelor, you know -- it's just more warming to have this cold, white bachelor box becoming a more family friendly item.

Our vacations will be more relaxing for both of us. He won't have to ask for a pop and I won't have to get it for him. I hate to say "have to get it for him" because I really did like to get to get it for him.

Relaxing or not, I liked our old vacations better.

Monday, November 28, 2005

Are We Ready Yet?

Toby and I have been thinking about venturing into the possibilities of adding another addition to our already growing family. Our littlest baby is almost 8 months old already and the other baby is over 20 months so our time right now isn't as consumed with baby stuff like it was a few months ago. We're just not sure though if either of the kids are ready yet.

Or if we are, for that matter.

We've discussed the pros and cons, the ins and outs and all the perspectives of such a life changing decision and just haven't come up with a very conclusive conclusion. Neither a boy or girl would really matter although I do think that there's pros and cons with either. I guess that's where the pros and cons come in that we've discussed lately.

Since we've already had 2, it wouldn't really be a big adjustment if we do decide to go ahead with this possibility. Although, in a lot of ways I personally think that maybe we should wait since it could be quite a stress for all of us and would increase our responsibilities to yet more demands and duties. I'm sure it would be worth it in the long run with either choice we make. I suppose that means there would also be drawbacks with both decisions.

Since we had Landon and Janae so close together, that kind of effected a lot of our other plans. That year of taking care of Landon while being pregnant with Janae was pretty exhausting. I'm still trying to catch up from that. And then to add more on top of that just doesn't seem wise yet.

The last time I brought this up with my husband, he said he just didn't know. The time before that when I asked, he was researching possibilities, finances, health issues and alternatives. Since then, his conclusion is that we should wait until Landon is older (which also means that Janae will be older too) and see how we feel about it then.

I agree with the waiting choice.

But then one of us will bring it up out of the blue and we'll talk about it some more.

We do have the house. The yard. The ideal location. I am a stay at home mom and our finances wouldn't be effected that much. We just wonder if timing wouldn't be better if we waited.

There would be the added feedings, daily and night time care, bed, potty training, teaching lessons, playtime, baths, cuddles, etc. etc. And all would have to be covered and taken care of by the first 2 years.

Of course it would be a rewarding experience but still, are we ready for this again?

We've talked to other people about this; most encourage us to wait while others strongly urge us to go ahead. Bringing more people into this is just making this personal decision more complicated. Anyone have ideas?

Man, getting a dog is a big decision.


Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Manna From Heaven... well actually, Minnesota

This morning, while juggling a thermometer in one hand, a fussy/sick baby in the other and chasing a little boy all over my dusty house (Toby's drywalling our new office), I heard a sharp rap at the door and looked up just in time to see a delivery guy walk off the porch.

I opened the door and picked up the package and read the label. The address was ours but the name wasn't. By then, the delivery guy was gone.

Then I read the return address: Lena's Lefse in Minnesota and I could smell the aroma coming from the box. I immediately wondered what it would be like to eat lefse in Nebraska and if I would be tampering in somebody's mail by opening the package since it had my address on it but somebody else's name.

Every holiday season, I go through our grocery aisles and search intently for lefse. I asked around a bit the first year and the only response I got was, "Excuse me?" And then they'd ask, "How do you spell it ... l-e-f-t-s-u-h...?"

Wrong suh! It's l-e-f-s-e.

"Hm, you say that 'lefsa'? Never heard of it. Is it food?"

And then I'd try to describe to them in words the scrumptuousity of this delicious Norwegian potato tortilla.

They just look at me like I'm nuts or definitely Norwegian -- which I probably am both.

So, with this fragrant box sitting on my counter, I called our friendly neighbor lady who also happens to be part of the neighborhood gossip party and asked if the last name on the box rang a bell. She said she'd ask her contacts and get back to me.

About 6 hours later, I got a call from her. She said she asked several other neighbors, looked in the phone book for the name and even asked the mailman but nobody recognized the name. She advised me to call the post office.

I couldn't find that number and plus they were closed so I decided to look Lena's Lefse up on the web. I'm so thankful for the internet.

Found the number and called and the lady I talked to remembered writing out the address. She said that since there were no people with that last name in Seward, we could just keep the box since the lefse wouldn't be fresh by the time I sent it back and she sent it to the right person.

I couldn't believe it. There were 25 pieces of 15" round lefse in the package. I thanked her wholeheartedly and emphasized it by jumping into a long-story-short speal about where I'm from, where I live now and how I can never find lefse here. She was pleased. I'm sure any of the rest of the neighbors would've thrown the stuff away because non-Norwegians don't usually care for it. Especially Germans. (Toby's German and doesn't care for it.) How our address got on there I'll never know but I'll never forget how we got lefse for the first time in Nebraska.

By the way, we shared some with our friendly neighbor and her husband because they've had it before and I knew they were one of few who would appreciate this Norwegian manna.

Side note: I noticed that not even my spellcheck recognized "Norwegian" or "lefse." This must be a German computer.

Sunday, November 13, 2005

The Tragedy Of The Lost Belt

This morning, my dear husband was busily getting ready for Church. He had selected a handsome pair of sage green slacks and a sharp white button up shirt and a white t-shirt for underneath. Black socks, black shoes and a black belt would top him off.

While I got the kids' clothes ready, I could hear him rummaging around and mumbling about his black belt. Usually it's the shoes he can't find but this morning it was the belt. He looked high and low and between each place he looked, he'd come and ask if I knew where it was. I assured him that the last place I saw it was hanging in the closet.

He'd go back to the closet and look in there again, searching the walls, floor, dark depths and the highest shelf. I noticed he never turned the light on in our bedroom so I mentioned that maybe if he shed a little light on the issue, he could see what he was looking for. He continued to grope in the closet like a blind man and never found the belt.

I mentioned checking thoroughly under the bed. He looked there.

I suggested the laundry hamper -- perhaps he threw it in still attached to the pants he last wore it with. He looked there and no luck. He even checked the baby's hamper.

I advised the towel hooks in the bathroom since his work belt was already hanging there. No luck. By now I was thinking either somebody broke in the house and took the belt or else it sprouted legs and walked out.

Finally, I went and looked in the closet where I knew it HAD to be and he walked off into another room wailing about not knowing what he was going to do. I wondered if the pants were on the verge of falling off but to me it looked like they fit well. I inwardly sympathized with him by putting myself in his pants, so to speak, and felt a sudden urge to grab my falling pants. Ugh, that's an awful feeling and to have to go to Church like that is misery.

With the light on, I groped through the closet, looked under shoes and behind a bin, double checked the hooks it normally hangs on and glanced under the hanging robes. No belt.

I admitted that I couldn't even find it as I patted him on the back that it was going to be okay and then went to finish getting ready while he got Landon up.

Shortly later, he was getting Landon dressed and I walked through the room and noticed a strip of black leather around Toby's waist.

"Hmm, so you found your belt?"

He gave me this strange look like I had lost my mind or something. Then he looked down and a light came across his face as his cheeks reddened.

" guess," he sheepishly said.

"You mean to tell me all this time you were looking for your belt and you were wearing it the whole time?"

As he dashed down the stairs to breakfast he yelled over his shoulder, "You'll never know!"

He admitted it later and now I'm no longer in the dark as to why it took him 28 years to find a wife. I wouldn't be surprised if he started looking again forgetting that he already had one. Now I can see why wedding rings were invented and why some guys probably should wear them.

Saturday, November 12, 2005

Dumber Than I Look

I haven't been posting lately mainly because the internet was down on my computer. I think it was only down one day altogether but as you can imagine, for one like me who is on a steady diet of the web, it took me a bit to get caught up with all my sites, news and research once I was off my fast.
Surf The Web

Plus, I've been greatly lacking in details to post about. Not much new and exciting has happened lately; except of course f or my internet being down.

Toby knew what was wrong when it first wouldn't connect to my computer. He told me to take care of fixing it since it was real easy. I don't mind doing Toby's work but I always know what happens: I start it and he finishes it. It makes me wonder what the use was in me even being involved in the first place.

Toby's computer was still connected and had quite a healthy connection considering my computer's connection was more than lousy. So, he knew for sure what was wrong and what I was supposed to do about it.

He said it was simple: anybody could do it and that I wasn't too dumb to be able to figure it out. How promising. I think that meant that I was dumb but not too dumb.

He gave me my instructions. I was supposed to call our local telephone provider and get a number from them to call the router company (Linksys) that was supposed to have some code that started with 251-something and type that into the address bar and click go and then re-set something and then voila, I'd be good to go. I was in the dark and totally lost but thought for sure I could at least get the numbers.

I picked up the local phone book and started looking for Alltel (our phone provider.) After scanning all the "A's," I could find no "Alltel DSL Service 800 Number." I told Toby it wasn't in there. He sighed and said it was and then grabbed my book and started looking. (Toby's the guy who can't find his own shoes in the morning before work if I happen to put them away the night before in the closet. I can now understand why it took him 28 years to find a wife.) Sure enough, it wasn't in there.

He grabbed another phone book and started looking and found the phone number for me. So much for me even starting the job -- he was making the first moves and not only that, he actually found something.

He gives me the number "800..." Okay, got it and I reached for the phone.

"Did I say 800?"


"Make that 888; not 800..."

I transpose the zeros into eights and dial the number. Finally, I was doing my job. Really, it was still his job but at least I was doing something about the job he was making me do that was really his.

Thinking I'd have to wait forever on hold at Alltel as you usually have to, I was surprised to hear Harold's friendly voice pick up and ask me what he could do for me.

Instead of simply asking for the 800 number that I was supposed to ask for, in my surprise that I actually didn't have to wait 15 minutes before talking to a real live person, I delved into a long tale about all my computer woes, why I was calling, and what I was calling for; assuring him that that magic phone number to Linksys would solve my problem. "Certainly," and he gave me the number.

Toby was probably breathing a sigh of relief when I finally just asked for that number.

Oh Jeez

I call Linksys. I couldn't decide what number I was supposed to push when they gave me the options of what I needed help with so I was automatically sent to some guy in India. It said the phone call may be recorded for quality and whatever else they needed. I think what they really like is listening to smart computer wizzes like me and then posting them on the internet under "Customer Service Funniest Recorded Phone Calls."

Cramming the phone all the way into my ear, I strained to understand his English. He must've been used to customers like me and began to fully enunciate each letter and word.

When I gave him my email upon prompt, he repeated it back with, "d as in delta... i as in India, b as in Bangladesh, i as in ignorance..." or something like that. The words he'd use to define the letters he was questioning me on were hilarious. I corrected him on the "d" and said it was "t" as in tom. And he said, "yessss, tee ahz eeen telta."

Then he started making me do all these things that Toby had never told me about and I was going to parts of my computer that were deep and dark and quite intimidating. Immediately, Toby recognized the rabbit trail my Indian friend was bringing me down and started shaking his head and loudly whispering negative responses.

I'd wave at him and shake my head, hold my finger to my lips so as to emphasis the importance of staying quiet and then making the impact of the need for quietness, I'd ask the patient Indian guy to repeat what he just said.

Soon Toby was half way between his computer and mine. He was looking over my shoulder and was making stronger and louder commands and pointing and sighing and heaving and shaking his head.

I kept hearing, "NOOOOO, you DON'T have to do that... they always make you do that but it doesn't work..." I was beginning to feel like my efforts were fruitless.

My kind Indian friend repeated the same thing three times for me and then when I typed something in and it wasn't responding right away he said, "Jist wait a moment end an arrer missage wil come upp." I thought to myself that even he was losing hope in me.

I kept asking him for that 251-something number and he kept saying that we had to wait until we had all this done before we could get to that part. Between his instructions, I started typing in every connotation of 251- something that I could conjure up but that wasn't helping either. The service tech had lost me a long time ago so I figured my chances of helping myself were as great as his chances of helping me were.

By now Toby was sitting right next to me and Janae was wailing on the floor next to us.

When he finally told me to unplug my router from the power source for ten seconds, Toby had had enough. He was getting louder with his "no, you don't have to do that" that I knew I was going to either have to politely hang up on the guy or else kindly sit on my husband's head. Or, I could just throw out the whole computer and be done with it.

Throw Computer "Thanks Sir, I fixed the problem... Have a good day! Bye...." Click.

I instead compromised and interrupted the fourth direction in a row that my Indian had given me and asked him if my husband could just talk to him. I handed the phone to Toby, stood up and walked away. Toby took my place on the chair and proceeded to fix my computer.

When he hung up the phone about five minutes later, the only thanks I got was, "You are dumber than you look."

I retorted with something like that I didn't understand why he had me do stuff like this since he was always the one to take over in the end. I quoted back to him a saying I've heard more then once from his sweet lips when he was helping me do my work Laundry and I'd stand over his shoulder and give him unsolicited instructions over and over:

either you do this or I'll do this; there's no reason we both have to be doing this.

He just rolled his eyes and (I think) inwardly admitted that I was right. I saw him smile as he went back to his computer and I went back to mine.

The next day I told him we needed to order a battery for our camera. Guess who did it in the end? I actually did but not without the help of someone else. I'm thinking I should frame Toby's famous phrase and hang it here in the office.

Friday, November 04, 2005

The Guys' Rules

This was probably intended as an email forward but I found it on the internet. I find most of it pretty accurate after living with my man for almost 3 years. Had to laugh at some of these. ~Court

At last a guy has taken the time to write this all down. We [men] always hear "the rules" from the female side, now here are the rules from the male side. These are our rules!

Please note... these are all numbered "1" ON PURPOSE!

1. Learn to work the toilet seat. You're a big girl. If it's up, put it down. We need it up, you need it down. You don't hear us complaining about you leaving it down.

1. Sunday sports. It's like the full moon or the changing of the tides. Let it be.

1. Shopping is NOT a sport. And no, we are never going to think of it that way.

1. Crying is blackmail.

1. Ask for what you want. Let us be clear on this one: Subtle hints do not work! Strong hints do not work! Obvious hints do not work! Just say it!

1. Yes and No are perfectly acceptable answers to almost every question.

1. Come to us with a problem only if you want help solving it. That's what we do. Sympathy is what your girlfriends are for.

1. A headache that lasts for 17 months is a problem. See a doctor.

1. Anything we said 6 months ago is inadmissible in an argument. In fact, all comments become null and void after 7 days.

1. If you won't dress like the Victoria's Secret girls, don't expect us to act like soap opera guys.

1. If you think you're fat, you probably are. Don't ask us.

1. If something we said can be interpreted two ways and one of the ways makes you sad or angry, we meant the other one.

1. You can either ask us to do something or tell us how you want it done. Not both. If you already know best how to do it, just do it yourself.

1. Whenever possible, please say whatever you have to say during commercials.

1. Christopher Columbus did not need directions and neither do we.

1. ALL men see in only 16 colors, like Windows default settings. Peach, forexample, is a fruit, not a color. Pumpkin is also a fruit. We have no idea what mauve is.

1. If it itches, it will be scratched. We do that.

1. If we ask what is wrong and you say "nothing," we will act like nothing's wrong. We know you are lying, but it is just not worth the hassle.

1. If you ask a question you don't want an answer to, expect an answer youdon't want to hear.

1. When we have to go somewhere, absolutely anything you wear is fine...Really.

1. Don't ask us what we're thinking about unless you are prepared to discusssuch topics as baseball, the shotgun formation, or monster trucks.

1. You have enough clothes.

1. You have too many shoes.

1. I am in shape. Round is a shape.

1. Thank you for reading this. Yes, I know, I have to sleep on the couch tonight; but did you know men really don't mind that? It's like camping.

-- A guy's perspective on everyday rules

Two Tragedies

Yesterday, I was made aware of two tragedies. The one is a tragedy of death in a family; the other a tragedy of a death of a family. The one was a physical death; the other a hypothetical death.

During the afternoon, I got a phone call that a friend of ours passed away unexpectedly leaving behind a close-knit large family. They were in a foreign country as missionaries for an indefinite time and their son especially had given his heart for it. After battling an infection that was thought to be serious but not deadly, he died as he was being life flighted to another country. I was shocked and couldn't quite grasp that it actually happened.

During the evening, my sister in law and I went to visit a lady and her two children who had become somewhat affiliated with our church through her ex-husband who had been in jail and had attended our jail ministry while there. Since then, he's had a rocky road back to a normal life and has recently pretty much gone to back to where he started. I understand the police have a warrant out for his arrest and he'll be back in jail. Because of lying, stealing and drugs, he has no house, no car, no phone, no job and no life.

I looked at the face of a wife who's husband left her for drugs and sex and only comes around to spend time with the kids once in awhile. I wondered how she can even get out of bed in the morning after having someone she loved, hurt her so bad.

This father of her children is anything but a dad and his words mean nothing because he lies more than he tells the truth. His child support I have to imagine is sporadic and inconsistent because his jobs seem to kind of conform around his bad habits.

Through looking at the house she's bought, the steady life she's provided for her kids, the job she commutes to at quite a distance everyday just to support her family and the way I could see she relates to her kids, I can see clearly that as best as she can she's picked up the pieces and has tried to go on.

Even if her husband did come back, renew his vows and make a 90 degree turn in his life, I would never blame her for not taking him back. The scars on his life from the multiple drugs and I'm sure the multiple sex partners would make it life threatening for her to love him as a wife should love her husband.

This morning, I awoke to my husband getting out of a warm bed and going out in the chilly morning to make a living to support his family. He'll come home tonight and hug and play with his kids, work on his house and show me that he really meant it when he vowed "forsaking all others and cleaving only to your wife."

This broken wife I visited last night, has no assurance of love and devotion. Her dreams are dashed and her hope is gone. Her love is dead.

The family who lost a son and brother can rest in the hope of seeing their loved one some day in heaven; this broken family (from a human stand point) has no hope of ever seeing their husband and dad restored. Both are tragedies and both are heartaches. The one sadness will last forever; the other, only for a time.

What a promise to know that when heaven is my home, earths joys and sorrows are diminished by eternity's light. How thankful I am for the promise of hope.

Monday, October 31, 2005

A Blog To Blog About

Now here's a good site to read on a rainy day, or a sunny day; cold day or even a hot day. In other words, anytime you want a good book to read, check out this site. It has lots of variety. You never know when the author is being spiritual, controversial, hyperbole, gossipy, friendly, naughty or just plain Britt.

A little history about the author...

she's a second born (that tells you a lot right there)
she likes to wear red socks
she takes long showers
she lives in a different state for half of the year
she was scared of July Fourth as a child
she's blonde but surprisingly isn't a blonde
she won't drive
she ran away from home once when my brother butchered a mean rooster
she's not married (she's not a rotten apple either)
she's not afraid to say no :)
she has a mean dog that attacks people (okay, one person)
she likes it when I clean out my closet
she has tons of money but has never had a job (she carries multiple $20 bills in her pocket at all times and hands them out to whoever asks for one)
she has multiple names (I'll spare you the list for now)
she's nice and has an interesting blog

Just getting her back for the one she did to me. :-P

(Our mother taught us not to fight when we were children so we had to learn how to get back at each other in other ways.)

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Just Like Clockwork

Countless times I've heard people ask me recently, "have you changed your clocks... did you set your clocks back?" Countless times I've lied and said, "Yes," when in reality, not one clock in our house has changed. Thankfully, the computer clocks automatically set themselves back or ahead so at least we have some accurate reference of time. I guess I'm not lying 100%.

Instead of saying 'no' and then having to explain the whole ordeal, I just say 'yes' because I do know that all I have to do is look at the time and subtract one hour from it and then I end up with the right time. So, at least I'm in the same time zone as the rest of my neighbors even though our clocks are set different from theirs.

The story goes like this... twice a year, my husband and I go through the whole authority/submission thing. You see, I'm being submissive by allowing his authority in deciding when, how, who, where and what clocks get changed. The only problem is, he's not exerting his authority. Of course, you can't be submissive to your leader by telling him what to do so it's kind of hard to submit to something that isn't happening.

This happens every time a battery dies in one of our clocks too. Time stands still in certain rooms of our house periodically.

Finally one time, I broke down and explained to Toby that the dad always changes the clocks; the mom just looks at what time it is. That's all she has to do with clocks. I suppose she can dust them off once in awhile or hang them on a different wall but the whole manual side of the clocks, is totally controlled by the dad.

He told me that where he comes from, the mom does the clockwork.

In that same conversation, I wisely explained to him that the dad also locks the doors at night (his way of exerting protection over his family and house) and sets the thermostat just right before bed. (his way of showing his tenderness and care for his family's comfort and wellbeing.)

He just nodded his head, grabbed his book and headed to bed, asking me over his shoulder if I locked the back door.

It gets confusing after awhile though because sometimes I'll just break down and decide to change a clock. Then I'll forget what clock was changed and what clocks are still on the old time and so then I forget if I'm supposed to add, subtract or just accept the time.

When I ask Toby why he doesn't change the clocks, he says that in 6 months, he's just going to have to change them again: what's the use. I say, what's the use washing your laundry today when you're just going to get it dirty tomorrow? I mean, his theory is easy to argue with.

Well, I just noticed the time and realized I need to scramble in order to get my baby down for her nap in time for a nice long snooze before church tonight. Wait... I think I have the wrong time... yeah, I still have an extra hour yet.

Okay, I think I need to have another talk with my husband or else just change the clocks. Just like clockwork, we have the same discussion every time. And we draw the same open ended, unanswered, conclusions too. Sigh.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

On Romantic Trucks And Screaming Kids

Toby had to go to Lincoln tonight to do a job estimate. He asked me if I wanted to go along (after I had asked him all day long if he thought we could go with) and I immediately said yes. Of course, since he was bringing me, he had to also bring the--er, our kids. That was fine with both of us considering we didn't even seem to consider leaving them home anyway.

So, he grabs the boy; I grab the girl and we head out to the truck.

Now, at first thought, I always think it's going to be romantic to ride in the truck versus the minivan together. It's a bench seat in the front and just seems more lovey dovey or something. Before we even drive past our mail box, I remember why it's never been romantic and probably never will be.

After putting Janae in her seat I had to run back in the house. When I got back to the truck, Toby was just opening his cell phone to make a call. I slowed my steps and stalled at the door and finished up some things before getting in, hoping his call would be over by the time we left. I was having visions of my husband, fumbling with the phone, backing out the driveway and down the steep bank into the street, looking for traffic while meanwhile avoiding the retaining walls, putting the truck in gear and not hitting any cars parked on the street.

My distant vision somehow merged into reality as I found myself moving back down the driveway with a husband on the phone while driving a stick shift truck. I also noticed he had a stack of letters to mail and knew that would only add to the confusion/excitement.

It dawned on me right then why the truck never has been a romantic experience.

All romance aside, I just held on to the door while we maneuvered up the street and headed into town. Of course, it wasn't until we were flying down the busy, crowded, fast streets of our state's capital did Toby decide he needed to make another call.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw him balancing the wheel with his elbow, holding the phone to his ear with one hand and resting the other hand on the stick. And then he reached for a notebook and pen. He handed that to me (whew) and repeated outloud everything the customer was saying so I could write it down. At least he wasn't trying to write on top of everything else he was already doing.

Then, he put the left blinker on and kept driving straight down the four lane highway. I kept looking for traffic that obviously must be in his way; keeping him from changing lanes. There was a blessed minivan several car lengths back that wasn't in his way at all so I continued to wonder why the signal was on and no lane changing was happening. The blinker stayed on and we just stayed in our lane.

After I started pointing, motioning and grunting about the signal being on, he changed lanes only to leave that left blinker on (ultimately giving one the impression he planned to head into the ditch since there were no more lanes to veer to the left into) and then changed back into the original lane several car lengths ahead. By then, we were at some stop lights and not in a turn lane though the right blinker was now on.

There were cars zooming past us on the right heading the direction of Toby's blinker but we were firmly stopped at the lights like the rest of the straight bound traffic was though our signal just kept blinking. I just assumed that he accidentally over corrected when he first shut the blinker off and it turned the right signal on.

After the light turned green, he shut the blinker off and we headed towards the intersection and made a right turn into the right turning traffic. We never entered the right turn lane though. Somehow, we actually turned without being in the turning lane and without our blinker on.

That ordeal was over and he hung up the phone and I was beginning to calm my nerves when suddenly, we did a 3 lane drift into a left turn lane, a blinker went on, the windshield wipers started going and we lunged through the intersection before I even knew it. Whew. At least the correct signal was on. I think anyway... it all happened so fast.

After the roof estimate, we had planned on doing a drive through supper deal but when Toby suggested going in to sit down, I immediately complied because I couldn't imagine him balancing his supper on his knee, his phone to his ear, his elbow on the wheel and his hand on the stick. I knew that was all possible, yes, but not safe.

Following supper, we headed back home and back through all the downtown traffic, yellow lights gallore. On our way, Toby informed me that when a light turns yellow in Lincoln, you don't slow down in order to stop by the time you reach the intersection, you speed up. I told him I learned that right away when I moved here. Actually, I learned that before I moved here: I learned it when we'd drive together in Wisconsin when we were dating.

My dad always taught us to slow down when you see a yellow light; not speed up. Makes me wonder if that has anything to do with why my dad has never been in an accident and Toby's been in more than I can count on one hand. (though not all of them were his fault, I must credit him that!)

When we were about 15 minutes from home, our girl child started screaming and screaming and we both remembered why it had been such a big question about me (ie., the kids, the mom, everyone else besides Dad, etc.) coming with Toby to do the estimate. We wondered outloud why it had ever even been an option for us to bring her along. We both vowed to never be in a vehicle again with our baby until she's old enough to know not to scream so loud. Usually Spanish music seems to calm her nerves but that wasn't working nor was Michael Savage's talk show on the radio.

The screaming accelerated until we scraped up our steep driveway. Then at last we were safely home, the cell phone off, the elbow off the wheel and Toby's hand was grabbing his child while I grabbed mine and we headed into the house.

So much for a romantic evening in town tonight with our darling screaming children and lurch and lunge pick up truck. Though I must say that at least we could be together with not even a book to distract us from talking.:)

Monday, October 17, 2005

Always Wondered What I Was

You are a FLUTE.You, like the flute, are possibly the most
obnoxious creation in existence. You love
everything bright and cheerful and ridiculously
happy. Do the rest of us a favor--go jump off
a cliff with your annoyingly blithe demeanor.

What musical instrument are you?
brought to you by

Unwanted Guest

I shouldn't even call it a guest. It's an invader. An enemy. A vile being. And it's definitely unwanted.

I was doing my motherly duties of getting juice out of the downstairs freezer before bed last night. Landon had been begging for juice all evening but after a bout of unnecessary dirty and odorous diapers, I thought it best to hold off on the juice and encourage more liquids such as water thus reducing the scented and running ingredients that had frequented his diapers through out day. I knew by morning, juice would be okay and was preparing ahead of time.

I was going about my normal routine that I go through every time I go downstairs. All the lights get turned on and each step that I must step on is thoroughly scrutinized. I carefully eye any suspicious spot on the floor and remain on the lookout for any sudden movements. I arrived at the freezer unharmed (and unarmed) when I saw a flash of white.

Yes, white. Out of the corner of my eye, it was dashing wildly on the wall as if someone was flashing a flash light beam from across the room. I froze. Afraid was I to look upon my oppressor because I knew I would be thoroughly oppressed upon seeing the wicked invader.

My eyes turned and looked. My spine tingled. My brain immediately recognized the specie and sent a message to my feet to run fast. All my guards showed up for duty and my adrenaline was fully activated. I knew all 300,000 feet of the invader would soon be heading in my direction but at the time, I couldn't tell it from head to tail. And with the way it was dashing wildly about, I don't think it could tell either.

I slammed the freezer shut and retreated towards the safety of the stairs, forgetting the errand I was sent on that sent me to this dungeon of a basement.

When I got to the steps, it dawned on me that the freezer was not fully shut because in my haste to close it, I had slammed it instead which had only resulted in briefly closing it thus the seal hadn't totally activated. I could do nothing else but move my body back towards the wicked being on the wall and come within close range of it again. All 300,000 feet could conveniently march in my direction. And the defense I had was only my adrenaline. I didn't even have my feet shod.

I lunged 10 feet across the room while keeping my feet planted at the stairway so as to have a quick way of escape should the invader suddenly grow long arms and sharp teeth as we all know these kinds of things do.

The freezer door looked like it was touching the freezer and I deemed it safe enough to leave till morning. I mistakenly neglected to fully determine that it was more than just "touching" and actually closed. My safety was more important to me than all the food in my freezer.

I whipped back to the stairs, dashed up the stairs 6 steps at a time the whole time imagining long, spindly creatures crawling between the stairs and around my toes, up my legs, then following my spine straight into my hair. I knew they would at least snatch a toe or two. I actually arrived to the kitchen in one piece. I counted all my fingers and toes and was amazed to find even my hair in place. I knew the monster would be after me before long because of the vulnerable state I was in: my Provider and Protector was up in bed reading a book. I couldn't be safe until I was with him. Book or no book.

I don't even remember going up the stairs or how I got to our room but before I knew it, I was at his side shaking and jittering while breathlessly gasping out my horrific experience; expecting his condolences and sympathies as only a wife naturally does when she has a loving and caring husband.

(This is the part that gets really scary.)

He rolled his eyes, hardly even looking at me. So much for thinking I'd at least get a reassuring pat on my back that everything would be okay. He was completely unconcerned with the fragile state of mind I was in; my emotions completely reflecting a victim on the brink of a nervous break down.

And then he mumbled something like, "they don't hurt anything..."

DON'T HURT ANYTHING??!! All 300,000 legs would do more damage on my body by just coming within 5 feet of me than the horse's hoof that hit me in the shin when I was a kid. Don't hurt anything??!!

I animated how looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong the beast was by holding up two fingers. My dear husband just rolled over and went to sleep.

And then I remembered: I am married to the man who for months has been talking about getting a tarantula spider the size of a dinner plate to keep in his office and whom he can feed innocent lizards to. I've told him instead to buy the lizards and we'll cut up the spider and feed it to the reptiles. We could even keep the lizards in the kitchen for all I care but please, not a "pet" spider that we knowingly allow to live in our home.

"But it would be good for the kids to have a spider," this husband of mine says.

"It's better for the kids to have all their fingers than an exotic spider with big teeth," I wisely retort.

"I'll keep it in the office and clean it's cage," is the response I get. Like I'm worried about a dirty spider cage.

"I'll never ever step foot in your office with an eight legged beast living comfortably on your desk," was my well thought out response. He even offered to build the cage, as if that would make a difference.

After I slid in bed last night, I assured him we would call the exterminator and eliminate the centipede epidemic that was sure to sweep through our house. If there's one bug I can't stand, it's a centipede. The one I saw last night was white, long, hairy and fast. I've always been terrified of them since I was a child but until last night actually haven't seen one for at least fifteen years. I was beginning to think they were just a childhood fantasy fear that was only a figment of my imagination. Now I know they're real.

I decided not to call the exterminator until Toby's spider arrives in the mail and I'll give detailed directions of what areas in our house that need extermination. That way, we'll get the most for our money and we can all live in peace and harmony.

And, I'm NEVER, EVER going to the basement again. At least not until the nice exterminator guy comes. If he never comes, there will be at least two rooms I will be banished from: the office and the basement. I hate spiders and centipedes... all 300,008 legs of them. Of course, that leg total would only be one centipede and one spider but I can't imagine having more legs than that running around my house. I'm sure there's more than just one of each in this civilized house of ours because they say if you see one, it's a sure sign that there's a whole community of them. You'd think we lived in a mud hut with a grass roof.

At least our tarantula would be in a cage and wouldn't have any wives or relatives. The cage would help cut down on his population. Maybe Toby's cage isn't such a bad idea after all. I'd rather eliminate the need for the cage in the first place. But, if I have to have a spider in the house, I'd rather he was in a cage. The centipedes too.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Sound It Out

My six-and-a-half year old nephew, Braxton, was dishwasher shopping with his parents. Being in the midst of learning how to read, he was only trying to help when he noticed his mom intently reading some confusing information on a particular dishwasher. In exasperation, she looked at her husband and said, "Aaron, I don't get this."

Before my BIL could even respond, Braxton came over and put his arm around his mom's waist and encouraged, "Just sound it out, Mom."

Sealed Fate

Betcha didn't know that today is a very important anniversary of a very important part in history. Well, at least my history. Three years ago today, I met the man that would forever change the course of my life. He also met me and I've been changing his life since then as well.

We were at a large youth function when the meeting took place. I had observed the whole lot of the testosterone infected male species that equally swarmed the grounds as did those of my own womanly kind. Most of the other species were annoyingly shy or overly friendly and most seemed strange to me. Only a few that I noticed were in the normal range. Except for the guys I knew from my immediate group, I ruled the whole lot of them out except for two.

During the course of the day, I found myself in a van packed full of kids heading up a mountain. I was quietly minding my own self, thinking, watching and listening to all the chatter around me. I was reflectively looking out the window into deep ravines and up snowcapped peaks. I was just being unusually quiet when the friend sitting next to me attracted my attention with what she was saying to the guy sitting in front of me.

I don't remember what I said or did but whatever it was, suddenly this guy was sitting backwards in his seat and was totally ignoring her and all into talking to me. What they had been talking about was hardly anything I could relate to except for one minute detail. That was all it took for this guy to notice me and forget everything in this world except for me. I didn't even know his name yet.

He literally did turn around in his seat to talk to me. At first I didn't know what to think but I liked the way he looked, the way he talked and the way I could talk to him. He was one of those two guys that seemed normal and nice that I had noticed earlier. Everyone called him "Tobe" but when I questioned further just to make sure I knew his name, I found out it was "Toby."

After reaching our destination, we all got out and took a hike and more than once we passed each other. He always smiled real friendly and would say, "Hi," in a warm and friendly way.

While we sat and waited for all the hikers to return, a bunch of us sat in the van and talked about where we were from, who we were and all those important details.

From the front, I heard someone voice back to me that I had a Canadian accent and was from Canada. It was Toby. The way he said it, I felt like he was extremely irritated by people that talked with my accent. I defended myself saying I wasn't from Canada nor did I have an accent. Truthfully, HE was the one with the accent. He would have none of it.

I was convinced he didn't like the way I talked, not that I talked strange but apparently he thought so.

But, he continued to have a sparkle in his eye and throughout the next week, I caught him often looking at me. He was a head taller than most of the guys there and was easy to spot. More often than not, his head was turned in my direction and I could see the gleam in his eye from across the room.

Now, three years later, he still has that sparkle and he's still looking at me. And, he's still making fun of the way I talk.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005


I have been so forgetful lately. And when it comes to passwords and usernames, I forget them all. I even forgot the ones that get me to my own blog. If I just wanted to visit my page and had to type the address in, I don't remember how to spell Coeur d' and I forget where the "d" goes and on which side the apostrophe goes. Thank goodness for a "Favorites" list.

But, a Favorites list can be a problem too. I had a whole list of favorites in my Favorites and no back up plan. (sticky notes on my computer with all my favorite sites, passwords, shortcuts and usernames.) Recently, Toby had to reinstall Windows XP in my computer and... you guessed it. I lost it all.

I tried going on eBay today to pretend to bid. I always seem to lose the nerve and think that my Paypall account won't work -- actually it won't... I've never updated it and got a credit or bank number in it. So I bid and hope someone out bids me. And they always have.

Today, I couldn't even get on eBay. Then when I finally could, they said "Welcome back 'whatever-my-username-is' " but I couldn't get any password to work when I needed to ask the seller if they would consider setting up a Paypal account for me in exchange for me buying their item. I happened to remember my email address and the nice computers at eBay directed me on how to set up a new password. I don't know how many times I've done that in the past couple months and I've never bought a thing on eBay.

The other day I tried going on a pregnancy/baby site that I'm subscribed to and couldn't get a single of my usernames to work. I finally figured it out but then I can never remember if my password has a "u" in 'juniour' or if it's the other "junior."

Last week, I got an email from (somehow I got subscribed to that site too) and the subject line said, "Are you forgetting things..." (or something like that; I can't remember for sure.) I was like, "This is it! This is what's causing all the problems!"

I felt like I could identify so much with that subject line that I immediately opened the email and began to read about forgetfulness. By the time I was finished reading the short paragraph, I was sitting on the edge of my chair and knew I had something serious and was at a risk for Alzheimers. I felt so relieved to finally be able to put a finger on my memory loss and was in the process of taking their test to see if indeed I was pre-Alzheimers or actually already had the disease.

When I got to the section that listed those at risk, I was twenty-some years too young to qualify for even having a slight reason to take the test. I was disappointed in that finding and surprisingly, I haven't forgotten that important fact.

A few weeks ago, I couldn't remember if Janae's middle name ended in a "e" or just a "k." Is it 'Brooke' or 'Brook'? Good thing we have a legalized birth certificate for her.

Last night, my husband gave me directions for what to do with my computer to eliminate the pop up ads I've been getting. It was something real simple like, "turn off the computer" or something like that but I didn't remember.

Last weekend, my SIL ("sister in law" in internet language) was shopping and called me from the fabric store to ask me a question about fabric for a baby quilt. She told me where she was and I was well aware that she was indeed shopping. Later that day, I called her house to see if she had ended up going to town to shop and get her fabric or not. She just laughed at me.

There are countless other things I've suffered lately because of forgetting some important and major detail but of course, I can't remember them at the moment.

I will just self diagnose my ailment as Somezeimers: a disease my grandma always claims she has. She always says that she doesn't forget "all" off the time just "some" of it. Who knows... it may even be genetic and I actually have a reason for my memory loss.

Or maybe it's similar to "sins of the fathers being passed from generation to generation." Don't even get me going on that one. I do remember what I think about that concept.