Thursday, July 31, 2008

Because a list is as good as I can do right now.

The last few days have been so busy that I believe there is an actual cyclone swirling around me. In fact, they may name a major hurricane for me.

Hurricane Melanie, Cat-5. Forget boarding up your windows. Just get out of her way.

I have been going, going and now I am gone. If I were a rapper they would name me Poop Dog.

See? The fatigue is affecting me.

Here is a list of things I have done today.

1. Sold a car. Signed papers in the rain. Avoided lightning strikes.

2. Sprayed Easy Off to clean my oven later. HATE cleaning the oven. HATE it.

3. Picked up comforter from the cleaners.

4. Went to the drug store.

5. Took child to the doctor for final check-up.

6. Went to Target and bought kitty litter pads because I have to move with a huge cat with kidney issues. (Don't tell the Hampton Inn!)

7. Got the Venti Mocha, non-fat, add the whip.

8. Grilled pork tenderloin for dinner.

9. Cleaned the fish bowl.

10. Made pot of coffee that I am about to enjoy.

Ahhh... blogging, coffee and HGTV. Relaxation awaits.

How was your day?

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

It was a great shopping experience, except for the heaving.

School starts in just a few weeks and in the middle of it all, we will be packing up and moving. We'll arrive at our new home days before school begins, so our shopping opportunities are slipping away.

So yesterday we headed for the mall for some nice fall-ish clothes that do not cause heat stroke. To the people who have decided school should start in August, the hottest month of the year, I have one question for you.

Are you mad?

Before we began our capri shopping trek, we stopped at Chick-Fil-A. When we walked up to the counter, I knew there was a problem.

An entire area of the food court was roped off and a huge Zamboni-like mop thingy was parked in the middle. A man was fiddling with the cap of a drain with his foot. I never saw anything coming from the drain, but I suspected that something foul could emerge at any moment.

After we got our delicious nuggets, we walked away, far, far away from the Zamboni Zone and found a table. I opened up my Meal #5 and saw the source of the problem. The restrooms were closed and a huge sign blocked the entrance.

Let's put it all together.

Roped off region. Zamboni. Drain. Closed restrooms.

EWWWWW! All I can figure is that the restrooms were backing up or about to back up into the food court. FOOD COURT. Right next to my beloved Chick-Fil-A.


We scarfed down our meals from far, far away and I saw a man begin to drive the Zamboni. Another man stood by with a mop.

Um, yeah. Like that's going to do anything.

We didn't stay long enough to actually observe the cleaning. Thank goodness.

We finished our lunch from a distance and took a detour to our favorite stores, where we did find some great fall-ish clothes for school.

Shopping for fall clothes in July while watching a Zamboni.


Nope. This is my life.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Leaving Prints

Hitting the snooze button once more.

Pulling the sheet up over your head.

Turning on the light.

Holding a toothbrush.

Stirring coffee.

Spreading peanut butter on soft white bread.

Penning a note on a napkin.

Pouring milk over Cheerios.

Patting a child gently awake.

Combing through tangled hair.

Wiping a tear.

Grabbing keys and locking the door.

Gripping the wheel.

Twisting the lipstick at the traffic light.

Swiping a debit card.

Carrying groceries while holding an umbrella.

Sorting the laundry.

Drying dishes.

Writing a check for the mortgage.

Answering a cell phone while clicking the keyboard.

Opening the refrigerator door.

Stirring spaghetti sauce simmering on the stove.

Folding your hands to pray at the dinner table.

Turning the faucet to start a bath.

Holding a book.

Hugging a child.

Pulling the covers up to tuck them in.

Turning out the light.

Setting the alarm to start the day all over again.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Good, clean, grass-stained fun.

Somewhere in my neighborhood yesterday, a perfectly sane woman was inside her air-conditioned home watching HGTV and drinking Diet Coke because it was hot as blue blazes outside.

Then she called her friend on the phone and told her about the crazy woman down the street who was mowing her lawn on one of the hottest days of the summer so far.

Um, that was me. The crazy one.

I realize that it was absurd and beyond all reason to be outside in the scorching heat, but the new mower, it was calling me.

That's right. I said NEW mower.

Last summer my husband was away with work and I was left with yard duty. We could have hired someone and, in fact, the kid next door did a fine job mowing the front yard. All I had to do was mow the back.

With a push mower.

My neighbors were amazed. The other wives who sometimes mow their lawns could not believe that my mower was without power. In essence, folks, I was powerless.

Two of the neighbors nearly forced their self-propelled Cadillac mowers on me.

The difference between a push mower and a self-propelled mower was amazing. It was like going your whole life without Cool Whip on your dessert and then some sweet, old aunt tops your pumpkin pie with fluffy goodness one Thanksgiving and your life will never be the same.

If you are scratching your head or chuckling, perhaps you've never had to mow with a push mower.

Let me explain it to you. A push mower is just one step above Amish.

No offense to the Amish. I love their quilts.

Seriously, I can relate to the Amish. I know what it's like to be picked on; I'm baptist. People still think we don't dance.

Hello. Have you never been to our Vacation Bible Schools? Have you not seen the cool hand motions? It's crazy fun. Crazy, I tell ya. We just don't swing our hips or shake our fannies.

At least, not at church. Wink. Wink.


A few weeks ago, my husband was mowing the backyard when I heard the mower abruptly go silent.

He came inside and said, "The mower is kaput. I hit a stump or something."

Y'all, I was elated. I knew this meant that we were getting a new mower. (I know. I need to get out more.)

We headed to Lowe's that afternoon and discussed the self-propelled option. I told him about how wonderful it was and how much he would love it. I didn't use the Cool Whip analogy, although it would have been useful at the time.

The difference in price between the push mower and the self-propelled mower was a mere thirty bucks.

I, of course, asked if I was worth thirty bucks.

He, of course, paused to think about it.

It's a good thing I am confident in our relationship.

In the end, we bought the self-propelled mower. I was tickled to death. (I know. I know. My own husband thinks I need to get out more.)

So, yesterday, I was looking at the blades of grass which touched the sky, and the mower called me from the shed. Or maybe I was hallucinating from the heat.

Either way, I mowed the yard with the self-propelled mower and it was easy as pumpkin pie with Cool Whip. In fact, I almost wanted to dance.

Shhh... don't tell the deacons.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

A New Kind Of Breakfast Club

We went to the movies yesterday and I saw some of the best advertising creativity I have seen in a while.

JCPenney has just launched a new market strategy using the theme from The Breakfast Club. For now, the ad is being shown only in movie theatres. I tried to find a link to the video to share with you, but I couldn't fine one.

I LOVE commercials. Good commercials. Using psychology and creativity to change human behavior fascinates me. I know. I am a nerd.

Have you seen the commercial? What did you think? Anyone find a link? Email me.

And, JCPenney, if you're reading, feel free to send me some free stuff.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

She has a complex.

As usual, I am going to update you with Maggie's latest traumatic kennel experience.

Because I know you are biting your nails, waiting to find out just how awful it was for her.

Plus, I have absolutely nothing else to write.

We picked up Maggie yesterday at Ye Ole Patient Pet People's Kennel for the last time before we move. I asked the staff to make sure she had all of her shots while she was boarded so that she would be current for our upcoming road trip.

We are driving several days to our new home and I'd hate to pull into the Hampton Inn at midnight and have the hotel staff turn us away because Maggie was not up to date on her rabies shot.

Maybe that's what happened with Mary and Joseph; they weren't current on their shots. The "no room in the inn" line was just a facade.

Oh, yeah. That was smart. Send them to the stable with all of the animals. None of them had rabies. Sheesh.

I digress.

So anyhoo. I asked about Maggie's shots and found out that some states do not recognize the 3-year shot that Maggie got last summer. Well, you guessed it. The poor girl had to get an extra shot.

While we waited, the receptionist asked,"Is Maggie happy with you?"

I couldn't help but picture Maggie on a couch somewhere and a man with a notebook and pen recording all of her deepest thoughts...

"Feelings of abandonment?"

"Hmmm... it's all your mother's fault."

I assured the receptionist that Maggie was completely happy (as much as possible for a cat) and that she adored my daughter who, by the way, was totally cheating on Maggie, petting two kittens awaiting adoption.

Needle sticks and unfaithful owners. Someone call the ASPCA.

When I convinced the receptionist that Maggie was a happy cat, she said, "I'm glad she's happy with someone. She hates us."

Not that she took it personally or anything.

Another kennel tech spoke up,"That's how I'm going to act when I get old."

"Me, too," I said, "if someone puts me in a home, I'm going to hiss, too."

Hear that, Hubs? Prepare for the hissing when you come see me for the yearly visit in the Old Folks Home.

And, please. No shots.


Tuesday, July 22, 2008


That's the sound of a family and its cat back home from a weekend trip.

I think the patient ladies at the kennel are even happier than us.

More later...

Thursday, July 17, 2008

New Creatures

Last summer my daughter and I were given a tiny treasure. The little girls who live next door found a caterpillar and, knowing that my daughter loves all kinds of insects, they brought it over for official identification.

We knew it was special from its black and yellow markings...

Today I am writing over at Internet Cafe, so be sure to grab a cup of joe and join me.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Works for Me: Passing Along Books and Magazines

My daughter loves to read. She has received many books as gifts. There are some she keeps and reads again. For the rest, we pass them along.

1. Be sure the books are still in good (almost great!) condition.

2. Call your local library and ask if they would like a donation. Many do not take them for their shelves, but use them towards a book sale fundraiser.

3. Ask your school's librarian if they would like them.

4. If there is a children's home or shelter in your area, ask them if they would like children's books as well. Always make sure the books do not contain any violent material. (Even Spiderman could be scary in their situation.)

5. Magazines can be collected and given to hospitals. Be sure to call first. Ask for the hospital's volunteer coordinator.

6. If there is a prison in your area, you or your church may want to collect appropriate books and magazines for inmates. Be sure to check first. Some areas have a prison ministry in place.

No matter where you decide, always, always, always call ahead. They may not need the books or are unable to accept them for other reasons. Many agencies and organizations have policies in place about donations.

For more tips, see Shannon.

Dr. Duncan Hines could run circles around Dr. Phil.

In an answer to this, I baked a huge pan of brownies last night, which is perfectly rational and healthy.

I like to put the fun in dysfunctional. Adding a few chocolate chips is also helpful.

With the whirlwind of events involved in moving, I am trying to keep a sense of normalcy and peace in our household. It is also the summer, the time when children grasp hold of every inch of whimsy within their reach and hold on for dear life until the first day of school.

I am trying to keep that whimsy within my daughter's reach while keeping those brownies a respectable distance from mine.

It is a delicate balance.

So, you may visit here and find nothing one day, rantings the next, or an off-the-wall, crazy post about insects or a trip to Wal-mart. Or all of the above.

I've always said, being crazy is the only thing that keeps me from losing my mind.

How is your week starting out?

Monday, July 14, 2008


If stressed is desserts backwards, I am a BIG, HUGE, slice of cake.

A backwards one.

The move, it is getting to me. SO, if I sound a bit nuts, well, I am.

Real post later-

Sunday, July 13, 2008

There they go again.

Edited to add-

Jenni got it!

The quotes are from So I Married An Axe Murderer, a Mike Myers classic!!

My in-laws love to travel. They have been on some pretty exciting adventures including Antarctica, South America, Ireland, and the African jungle.

They've met some pretty interesting people and one or two gorillas.

Now they are in Scotland.

No offense to the Scots. I know it is a lovely country. From what I have seen, it is absolutely a lush, green paradise, but the first time I heard my in-laws say they were headed to Scotland, all I could think of was this-

"We have a piper down. I repeat. A piper is down."

And I have to say this-

"The Colonel, with his wee beady eyes. And that smug look on his face, 'Oh, you're gonna buy my chicken."

It is apparent that I need to get out more.

Points to people who know where this insane humor is from! Hubs- you can't guess.

Hint- It's not from Scotland.


Friday, July 11, 2008

An old Pink Panther joke is soooo tempting.

Yesterday afternoon one of my favorite Peeps dropped by and with his visit, he left behind a messy trail of toxins.

I'm talking, of course, about The Bug Man.

One night last week, while I was loading the dishwasher, I noticed a few ants in my tea glass. Oh, how I hate sugar ants.

I'd just received a postcard reminder from Buginix for their usual visit. Most of the time, they only spray outside the house, but I called Monday morning to ask them to come inside and take care of our dear friends, the ant family.

I use the term Friends loosely.

I have learned way too much about insects from my own child and from Arnold, The Bug Man himself. One thing Arnold told me on his last visit was this-

"Don't try to spray the ants yourself and don't clean before I arrive."

Spraying the ants yourself makes them scatter and can actually make the problem worse. Cleaning before he arrives removes their little pheromone ant trail and it is difficult for him to see from whence they come.

Yesterday morning, as difficult as it was, I did not spray the kitchen counters with anything. I saw a few ants just lollygagging around, but none of them had any sense of purpose.

Apparently there is at least one market not tapped into by Rick Warren.

So, anyhoo, I made myself a little solution of sugar water and left over Toaster Strudel icing, put it out on a paper towel and BAM! Emeril himself could not have made a better ant meal.

The Bug Man called me to let me know he was on his way, and asked if I could tell where they were coming from. I told him about my little ant sugar solution and he was elated.

When he arrived, he used some serious exterminator terminology like "Are they trailing today?" and I knew I'd climbed the rungs of the bug killer ladder.

I was in the cherry picker of bug killin,' my friends.

What was even more funny, is that he had a rookie in training with him. He showed him the little ant solution and the three of us watched the ants snack on it.

The Bug Man then told me about all of the amateur housewives he'd visited yesterday who had cleaned their counters and then declared,"The ants aren't here today."

The two of them rolled their eyes and he said,"You've made our job much easier."

Um, glad to help.

We continued to watch the little guys snack at the bar. One of the ants scurried away.

As it did, The Bug Man took out his official bug flashlight, and said,"What is THAT?"

His light formed a spotlight like a helicopter in a field, searching for the runaway suspect. I heard a search dog barking in the distance, but then I snapped out of it and realized it was just the dog next door.

"Oh my gosh. That is a dead body! This ant is carrying a dead body," The Bug Man discovered, then turned to me and said,"He is carrying away the ones you've already killed."

It was then that I knew we should have secured the crime scene.

I walked out of the kitchen and watched TV with my daughter as The Bug Man and The Rookie went to work. I could overhear the two of them talking ...

"We're going to bait them."

"Looks like they're coming from the outlet."

"Since she is already using a sugar water solution, we are going to go ahead and go with that."

Squirt, Squirt, Squirt.

They called me back in and The Bug Man explained the Plan of Action.

"We went ahead and mixed up a sugar water solution, but first I sprayed your Febreze to isolate the ants in this small area. That way they will go right to the bait. What we really want is the Queen. I've used a mild pesticide, Boric Acid, and mixed it with the sugar water. You should see results in a few days."

(And seriously, I am not sure what impressed me more. The fact that he went with my sugar water solution or that he cleaned the countertops with my Febreze!)

The two of them went outside to conquer the other annoying insects and I watched as the ants began to find their way to the deadly sugar mix. It didn't take long for them to "start trailing."

Within minutes, there were tiny black dots gathered around a blob of goo. They didn't notice that their friends were, ya know, dead.

If I listened closely with my new Bug Expert ears, I could almost hear them saying...

"Hey, guys! Look, sweet goo.... kinda tastes funny. Must be diet!"

"I can't feel my legs."

"What happened to Larry?"

"I dunno. Somebody better call him a cab."

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Thursday Thirteen: Summer Epiphanies

1. How in the world did my grandmother do all of her housework, cook three hot meals a day and manage to keep her hair looking good in this heat?

Granny, I am forever grateful for the dishes you left me, and for the advice about locking my doors and how to act like a lady, but a summer survival guide would've been equally helpful.

2. My air conditioning is on and I am sweating.

3. All I did was dust and clean the bathrooms.

4. I actually paused to wipe my brow. Do people still say that? "Wipe your brow?"

5. I went to an elementary school without air conditioning. It was hot. Our junior high and high schools had AC but it never worked.

See, people. Drugs did not fry our brains. The heat did.

6. If it were not for the fact that the pond out back is totally gross and filled with bacteria, rain run-off, and beaver excrement, and for the fact that I have, you know, standards, I would be out there wading in it.

Not swimming. No. That would be totally redneck.


7. I would give a Paula Deen cookbook to just hang out with the polar bears right now.

8. Has anyone noticed that the new buzz word is "climate change?" They can't decide if we are slowing cooking or freezing to death. But, the weather, it is changing.

Thanks, Einstein.

9. I don't think I can get to 13. My brain is cooked.

10. That pond is looking pretty inviting...

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Google Guffaw

My most disturbing, yet somehow most entertaining Google search yet.

"krispy kreme bathing suit calendar images"

Suddenly, I crave a custard-filled, chocolate-covered donut.

You know you're a Mom when...

You pick up the last bit of Toaster Strudel left by your daughter and begin to take a bite.

She stops you and says, "I licked it."

You eat it anyway.

Then you say,"I don't care. You're my kid."

But, oh how you wish she'd saved you some of the icing.

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Works for Me: Reusing Dryer Sheets

My friend T knows how much I love a good tip. She shared this one with me.

Save your used dryer sheets. Wet them generously and use them to scrub soap scum. When finished, rinse well with clean water.

You will need at least two used dryer sheets to do this. (As soon as they are wet, they will shrink up.) You can use a new one but I like the idea of recycling the old ones.

The softener dissolves the soap scum and the sheet acts as an abrasive. It also smells great!

For more awesome tips, visit Shannon.

I draw the line at workout tapes by Fonda.

I got up yesterday with every intention of being productive.

We are moving in a little over a month and I have stuff to do. Important stuff. Plus, we had no milk, no bread and no Diet Coke. It was a state of shopping emergency at my house.

Finally, after a promise to get a Happy Meal, my daughter and I climbed into the car to get things done. Yes, M'am. We did.

Except for the climbing in the car part.

And getting things done.

I knew something was wrong when my keyless entry wouldn't work. I kept pushing the button because that is what you do when something doesn't work. You just keep trying over and over.


I had to use the caveman method of actually putting the key in the door's lock to unlock the driver's door. I climbed in, hit the unlock button for daughter.


Then I tried to start the car.


No clicking noise, no sound of effort.


It didn't even raise its fists at me.

We went inside the house and I called the roadside assistance service because have I mentioned that this is A BRAND NEW CAR?!

I then phoned the pizza people because I'd promised my daughter a Happy Meal and we are completely out of food, unless you count half a box of Wheat Thins and some hot chocolate mix.

The pizza arrived on time, but not the roadside assistance service.

We ate our pizza, which was delicious. I highly recommend ordering pizza in the middle of the day because it will arrive at your door hot and fresh. No one else is ordering pizza at 1:00 PM and the pizza people are just sitting on ready to rush out and deliver some gooey, cheesy goodness.

The roadside assistance service arrived after about 2 hours. I was at home, not actually stranded on the roadside, so I was not a high priority.

Understandably so. I would feel bad if he had zoomed by a woman with a screaming baby in a wet diaper on the side of the highway to come rescue me in the comforts of my home. With fresh pizza and all.

To my surprise, Tom the Tow Truck guy (who should be a new character on Cars, I might add) was very nice, courteous, and informative. He charged my battery and my Honda Pilot was up and running.

He offered to still tow the Pilot to the dealer or to follow me there. I decided on the latter, so daughter and I hopped in our Honda as Tom tailed us. He followed us all the way to the dealer and checked on us before he returned to rescuing other stranded women.

Tom suggested that, even though it was a new car, we could have a bad battery. I had not left any lights or other battery-draining gadgets on, so something was definitely wrong. I still had to wait for the Honda people to figure it out.

Y'all. I don't like mechanics. I always feel like they assume I'm a woman and I don't know nothin' about fixin' no cars. You could put waiting in an auto shop right up there with waiting a the Post Office.

In fact, my ultimate torture would be a convention for auto mechanics and postal workers held at your local public library. It would be my personal Gitmo.

But, this visit was less than torturous. It only involved a few used car salesmen and a lot of games of Tic Tac Toe.

Turns out, Tom was right. It was a bad battery. So, new car buyers, be warned. You might want the dealer to check that battery before you roll out of the sales lot. Ours was covered under warranty and I was fortunate enough to have roadside assistance.

And a helpful tow truck driver named Tom.

Monday, July 07, 2008

O'er the ramparts we watched.

Last year we moved into our house shortly before the 4th of July. Most of the furniture was arranged and a few what-nots were in place when all of the neighborhood festivities began.

My husband was out of town, so daughter and I stayed home for the day. We grilled hamburgers and I made apple pie.

Well, Mrs. Callender made it. I just warmed it up for her.

The sun started to set when we heard a pop, then another, and another. The neighbors were setting off fireworks.

Now, these were no wimpy fireworks. These fireworks went up in the air and all. Over the trees. Like those fancy ones they set off at the city park.

Daughter and I grabbed a blanket and ran outside. We sat in her fort and watched as the party began. It was all fun and roses until the bugs decided to join the party. We rolled up our blanket, went inside, and sat in our upstairs family room in front of the window.

For hours.

It was good, comfortable, American fun.

So this year we were just tickled to tell hubs about the fabulous fireworks we'd get to enjoy from the comforts of home. We pulled up our upholstered chairs to the upstairs window, along with the ottoman and waited. In the air conditioning. Without mosquitoes. While eating brownies.

The 4th is all about remembering sacrifice.

The fireworks were even better than last year. They soared up over the trees, reflecting in the pond out back in shades of red, white and blue.

It was quite the display of pyrotechnic patriotism. The neighbors won't be able to afford to send their kids to college, but hey, it was totally worth it.

Hubs fell asleep in the chair. I tucked daughter in for bed. She lay awake, watching the fireworks from her window. Within a few minutes, she drifted off to sleep as the display of dangerous entertainment continued.

It was a fine 4th indeed.

Forget the pie. I'll have a slice of good, old-fashioned, air-conditioned, bug-free Americana right here.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

One Word Meme

I saw this over at Linda's and it sounded like fun. Although, it is very difficult for me to do anything that involves just ONE word.

1. Where is your cell phone? purse

2. Your significant other? Batman

3. Your hair? Help!

4. Your mother? Honest

5. Your father? Hardworking

6. Your favorite thing? Motherhood

7. Your dream last night? Weird

8. Your favorite drink? Diet Coke (sorry, two words!)

9. Your dream/goal? Newspaper

10. The room you’re in? Living

11. Your church? Welcoming

12. Your fear? Losing #6

13. Where do you want to be in 6 years? Here

14. Where were you last night? Home

15. What you’re not? Risk Taker

16. Muffins? Cupcakes

17. One of your wish list items? Wooden Indian

18. Where you grew up? Georgia

19. The last thing you did? Sip coffee

20. What are you wearing? pajamas

21. Your TV? cartoon

22. Your pets? Odd

23. Your computer? Lap

24. Your life? Good

25. Your mood? Changes

26. Missing someone? Grandmother

27. Your car? Blue

28. Something you’re not wearing? Shoes

29. Favorite store? Target

30. Your summer? Short

31. Like(love) someone? My Batman

32. Your favorite color? pink

33. Last time you laughed? reading

34. Last time you cried? dinner

35. Who will repost this? Roxanne??

Friday, July 04, 2008


It has become a bit of a blog tradition here to post on Independence Day. I've shared my thoughts on sparklers and how grateful I am for those fighting for freedom.

Well, this year, I thought I'd just preach.

Oh, I'm kidding. There's no way I could pass the collection plate over the Internet.

I listen to talk radio a lot. I read a lot. I try to stay informed. This is an election year. It's my civic duty to stay informed.

Everyone on television, radio, and the Internet seems to fall into one of two groups. I know what you're thinking. Democrat or Republican? Liberal or Conservative?

Nope. The Whiny and The Guilty.

The Whiny believe they do not have enough and they want more. The Guilty believe they have too much and they feel just awful about it.

A small minority in America, The Whiny and The Guilty get the most exposure on television, radio and the Internet.

So, what about the rest of us?

You could call us the silent majority. We are, I believe, the heart of America. We are neither whiny nor guilty.

We're frustrated about gas prices and rising costs of food and we are trying to make the best of it.

We would love for Downtown to be revived, but we're glad Wal-Mart helps make our family budget stretch a little more.

When times are hard, instead of blaming ourselves or others, we hunker down and help ourselves and others.

We understand the blessings that America has received. We don't take those blessings for granted. In fact, we are grateful. We want to responsibly share those blessings with others in our own country and abroad.

We believe that this country is still a great nation, yet we understand there is always room for improvement.

We wave flags at parades. We eat apple pie and watermelon and buy Old Navy t-shirts for the 4th of July.

We get discouraged about politicians but we still believe in The Constitution.

We go to church or at least respect another person's freedom to do so. We say,"Merry Christmas" as we place our donation in The Salvation Army's red kettle.

We're just everyday folks. We don't get any air time, but we're still here paying our taxes, saving for retirement, and helping our neighbors.

This 4th of July, we might spend a little extra money on sparklers for our kids. You might see us grilling hot dogs and hamburgers with our friends. We'll go all out to celebrate our freedom and we won't feel guilty about it.

Most importantly, we'll remember the ones and The One who made us free.

This 4th of July, we'll stay home to celebrate. We're watching the prices at the pump. Chances are, we're buying our apple pie and watermelon at Wal-mart, and our Old Navy t-shirts were on sale.

We aren't complaining. We're just taking care of ourselves and our families while celebrating the many opportunities that make it possible.

Hey, it's Independence Day.

Thursday, July 03, 2008

In a word: Exciting

A few years ago I started reading BooMama. My friend Nancy directed me to her blog and from the first paragraph I was hooked. She's Southern. She's funny. She's real.

I started to blog myself and soon I found Big Mama. Having a daughter of my own, Big Mama's stories about Caroline made me laugh and cry all at the same time. Plus, she is from Texas and has great hair. What's not to love?

These ladies are two of a group of bloggers I read each and every day. Now they have got some seriously exciting stuff going on. Both of them are now contributors for the LifeWay blog called All Access.

Did you read that?


If you are Baptist or have ever driven past a Baptist church, you may have heard of it. LifeWay is the primary publisher for about 99.9% of the material in many Baptist and other churches.


Last weekend BooMama and Big Mama attended Deeper Still in Atlanta to blog for All Access.

DEEPER STILL which translates to Beth Moore, Priscilla Shirer, and Kay Arthur.

Can it get any more exciting?

Yes, it can. You can head over to All Access this week and read BooMama's and Big Mama's posts on their Deeper Still experience. I promise you will not be disappointed.

Go ahead and mark it in your favorites while you are there because you'll want to keep reading every day about how God is moving in a powerful way in the lives of women across this country.

Thanks, Sophie and Melanie (BooMama and Big Mama respectively) for sharing your testimonies and yourselves with us.

May God use you both in a mighty way in the blogosphere!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Works For Me: Five Ingredients Recipe Edition

Crock Pot Stir Fry Beef Strips with Mushrooms and Peppers

1 (1-pound) top round steak, trimmed
1 (16 oz.) package frozen pepper stir fry mix
1 can condensed beefy mushroom or golden mushroom soup, undiluted
1 (8 oz.) package sliced fresh mushrooms
1 (1 ox.) envelope onion soup mix

Slice steak diagonally across the grain into thin strips. Combine steak, frozen stir-fry mix, soup, mushrooms, and soup mix in a 3 1/2 or 4 quart slow cooker. Mix well. Cover and cook on HIGH 3-4 hours or on LOW 6-7 hours.

Serve over rice. Yields 4 servings. Double for a large family.

I usually do not like frozen peppers but they work well for this recipe. The steak will be very tender and the sauce is yummy!

See Shannon for more great five ingredient recipes!