Friday, May 29, 2009


We had planned a week at the beach but a mix up with our reservations left us without a place so we are now planning a few days in New York City. Our daughter went last year at the same time and had a wonderful time so we are looking forward to a few days away. We love to travel. Maybe that stems from moving around so much in the military. The things we want to see while there include the empire state building, statue of liberty, a broadway play (Chicago), the Today show, and of course I want to run in Central Park! The trip wouldn't be complete without some shopping on Canal Street or playing on the big piano in Macy's which was featured in the film "The Big". Now all we have to do is decide what our sign should say that we will hold up at the filming of the "Today" show!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Our Governor

Our new governor, Bev Purdue, is having quite a time balancing the budget. It seems her answer to everything revolves around cutting the pay of the state workers. . . teachers in particular. At first, she cut their pay for the months of May and June by 10 hours. They were suppose to take this time off (the how was not explained) and not get paid for it. Our school system worked it out where the teachers would take this time after the children were out for the year and the teachers were scheduled to have work days on June 15th and 16th. Of course, this affects my daughter as an Assistant Principal. She will not have those two days off as they have meetings for them to attend, so she works the same amount of hours with less days for two months. This is in the midst of her rent going up June 1 and gas rising faster than we can keep up with. Now Governor Perdue's bright idea going forward is instead of the mandatory 180 days the children have to attend school, is to make them go 175 next year and the 5 days is 5 days less that the teachers would be paid. My question to her is what happened to all the money from the North Carolina Educational Lottery???????????? The school systems in our county haven't seen it. Does she realize that first year teachers get paid less than prison guards but the guards are at least allowed to carry a gun? It is not easy to recruit teachers and it is getting even tougher now. They are also cutting some assistants that the teachers of the younger grades need, and in some cases they are even cutting assistant principals. With all the disrespect that the children and parents show to teachers and administrators, it is amazing anyone would work in the educational field! Thanks Governor Perdue!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Long Weekends

Just like so many people, I love long weekends. Not that I had a whole lot planned for this one, but it was relaxing. Friday night I did some shopping with my daughter. Saturday morning I had my nails done and then I got things ready for a scrapbooking crop this Friday. Saturday evening we went to a graduation party for a sweet girl named Chelsea. Sunday at church I had the best time teaching Sunday School and then we sang a lot of patriotic songs in the 11:00 service which was nice. Heather and I started Monday off with a morning bike ride before it got too hot, and then we took the puppies for a walk. Monday was suppose to be the best day for the pool but the sun was in and out so I didn't get in. My husband was in for just a little bit and got quite red. I am reorganizing my scrapbooking supplies and so Gary put a couple of pieces together for me. I am using the Michael's coupon each week and buying piece by piece of the storage and desk items I need. It is too much trouble to drag out the supplies for scrapbooking to the dining room table and then put them all back when I am done. I have taken a corner of one of the spare rooms for scrapping purposes now :-) When is the next three day weekend?

Friday, May 22, 2009

Air Conditioning

When it gets warm and companies and businesses turn their A/C on, why do they turn it so low that we are now forced to wear sweaters or jackets. The idea is to cool it down but not make it so cold that people are miserable. My office has been freezing for the past two days and as a result, I have a scratchy throat this morning. My daughter and I are going shopping tonight, and the stores will have that air conditioning cranking to the point where we will be uncomfortable. My daughter is cold natured to begin with so she is use to taking a jacket everywhere with her even in the middle of July and August. In these tough economic times, you would think they would be a little more frugal with the energy cost and cut back the air!

Thursday, May 21, 2009


Everyone is asking me if I saw the special about Farah Fawcett. I think they assume since I had a similar (she had anal and I had colon and the difference is measured in just inches) cancer that I would have watched and they were right-I did! Farah was diagnosed the same year, 2006, that I was, and I am thankful that mine has not returned...yet. The one thing that bothered me about the show and they didn't discuss, was why she didn't have a portacath installed. Yes, her viens were worn out and damaged from the chemo, but that wouldn't have been the case if she would have had a port installed. Accessing the port feels like a mesquito bite so it isn't painful at all versus the time, pain, and agony they showed as the nurses tried to tap into a vein that would accept the needle after multiple chemo treatments. Now getting the portacath installed and removed wasn't a day in the park but the advantages far outweighed that discomfort. On May 30th, I can say that I have been cancer free for three years and I will feel more confident about remaining that way as each year passes!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Scrapping projects

My scrappin pal, Suzy, suggested some changes for my page of yesterday. See what a difference this makesA few bubbles and some rubber duckies make a big difference. I wasn't sure how the yellow would mesh, but there is something on the edge of the tub that is yellow, and kind of a yellow hue even in the patterened paper so it worked. I like how Ana is looking down so it kind of seems like she is looking at the ducks. Another layout that I did for my second Israel album was of the Dead Sea.

I enjoyed thinking about the fun we had in the Dead Sea as I scrapped this and I even journaled a little bit so I wouldn't forget the details. I've zoomed in on the journaling tag and it is a little fuzzy but I think you can still read it.

Signs of Spring

I've seen more baby birds and their nests this year than I think I ever have. We have a family of woodpeckers who have taken up residence in the tree between our house and garage. It was a rough time for all of us as they learned to drill since they started on the metal flashing of the chimney! They have moved on to wood now. Saturday we saw a mother cardinal hovering over three babies that decided to leave the nest to test thier wings. She was very busy. The babies were covered in soft down fluff instead of feathers and were very funny to watch. At work I have a dove sitting on some eggs in the tree outside my window. Her backside hangs off the nest and she downloads onto the sidewalk. We have had to put out a red caution cone and a sign that explains the hazard after the incident last week where one of the vendors was splattered! I am hoping these are signs of spring because I am ready for warmer weather!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Rainy day...again!

It started to rain yesterday and today is a total washout. The rain makes me want to stay inside and either sleep or scrap, but being at work isn't on the list!! Yesterday I was able to scrap a couple cards, one for my niece, and one for my dear friend Elouise. I can't post pictures as either one or both may see this. I also scrapped a page that I can't decide what is missing. I think the bottom half is a little empty. I am open to ideas so email me your suggestions, scrappers!

Saturday, May 16, 2009

I won, I won!

I just found out that I won a scrapbooking contest that I submitted the page entitled "three" (see previous posts for a picture of this page). It's not a big prize, just some papers and embellishments for scrapping, but that's the first contest I have entered and I won.
This was my morning project.

and it's second page

Friday, May 15, 2009

Lots of Z's last night!

Feeling better this morning after a good night's sleep. Not sure what the neighbor did with the bowls but they didn't clatter last night. I felt a bit remorseful this morning as I ran past their house but it was still dark so I couldn't tell if the dog had new bowls or not.

I was able to finish the scrapbook page I was working on the night before. Ana is such a good subject and so much fun to scrap. Check out the picture of her blowing out the candles...

I love how she claps for herself after the candles are blown out!

I'm not sure what the weekend holds for us. My husband has had a rough week at work so I told him to sleep in tomorrow morning and I will go for a long run and then find something quiet to do like scrapbooking! If it is sunny, I hope to get in the pool for a little while. It's been a long winter followed by a lot of rain so soaking up some sun would be nice.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Second day of "Sleepless in North Carolina"

Okay, the dog was at it again last night (see previous post of Sleepless in NC). He woke me up at 11:30 and again at 1:30. My husband had issues at work and didn't get home until 3:30 so he missed the ruckus. This morning when I headed out for my run, I dropped a note in their mailbox. It was a very nice note. I told them they had a nice puppy and he was very sweet, but explained all the noise he made at night with his bowls. I told them we weren't angry or mad and that we have a dog so we know how they can be, but I was desperate for a full nights sleep. I signed it "Thanks, neighbor!" I am hoping this will solve the problem and not create any animosity with the neighbor. We'll see.

I worked on a scrapbook page of Ana's birthday last November. I have it almost finished and will post a picture in tomorrow's post. I attend a monthly scrapbooking get together so I am trying to organize our Mexico pictures for that night which is May 29th. I missed it last month because I wasn't able to get pictures and papers organized having just gotten back from that trip.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Just wanted to share what I was able to scrap last night.

These are for two different albums.

If you've seen any of my albums, you know that I like two page layouts so these two match with two that I did last night (see previous post). I am finally making some progress with my pictures!

Sleepless in North Carolina

After some quality time spent scrapbooking last night, I went to bed around ten (late for me who rises early to run). I was almost asleep when there arose such a clatter, I sprung from my bed to see what was the matter! Both pups were snoring in their little beds, and I realized it was coming from outside. I looked outside but it was too dark to see anything. The noise was like metal falling on cement. I thought maybe the neighbor's dog was in their garbage can but ruled that out after about 10 minutes of steady clatter. Surely, they would be outside taking care of it if that was the source of the noise. The noise stopped and I drifted back to dreamland. I awoke to the same noise near midnight. It was so loud! My husband came home from work just as it stopped and I described the sound to him. I suggested maybe it was a bear in the trash cans and he assured me we lived in suburbia and no bears were around. He smiled as it dawned on him what the noise was. He had been awoken by the same clatter a couple of mornings ago. One of our neighbors (not the neighbor where I thought the noise was coming from) had a new German Shepard puppy and he was playing with his metal food and water bowls on the cement patio. I wanted to know why the owners weren't out there stopping the puppy to which he replied "They work nights so they aren't home to hear it". Now it all made sense. I started feeling bad for my other neighbor who's bedroom window is just a few feet from the puppy. If I could hear it in my bedroom which was over 100 feet away, she must have been pulling her hair out! Needless to say, I am dragging today. My usual morning run didn't happen. I need some sleep!!!!!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Scrapping Part two

Since I am new to this blogging thing, it takes me a bit longer to figure things out. Here are two more pictures that I wanted to show of scrapbook pages but couldn't earlier.
This is a two page layout meaning that they will be next to each other in the album
Now that the Spanish class I was taking has finished, I will have more time to scrap!


I've been talking about scrapbooking and how much I am getting accomplished so I wanted to show you what I am working on. This one is my favorite:

As I was finishing my Israel album a couple of weeks ago, I realized that I still had pictures from that trip that I wanted to scrap so there will be a second album for Israel. Afterall, it was the trip of a lifetime and I would hate to leave anything out. Here are a couple pages that will go into the second album:

I love the irony in that picture where the road sign points to "The City of David" and two Davids are standing unaware underneath it. For whatever reason, I can't get the last couple of pictures to load. I'll have to save them for another post. As you can see, I've been busy!

Monday, May 11, 2009

Pound Cake

Since yesterday was mother's day, my daughter cooked my favorite food (chili) and even made a pound cake that was topped with strawberries and whipped cream. We are enjoying a bountiful strawberry season this year:-) Several of you readers have asked for the recipe for the pound cake so here it is:

Sour Cream Pound Cake
1 box butter recipe cake mix (preferably Duncan Hines)
4 large eggs
1 cup of sour cream
1/3 cup of vegetable oil
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
Preheat oven to 350 and spray Bundt pan with Pam. Mix above ingredients with mixer on high speed for four minutes. Pour into sprayed bundt pan and bake for 55 minutes or until toothpick comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes, then invert onto heat resistant serving plate.


I've realized that I am not very good at emailing or blogging on the weekends. There is too much to accomplish! Saturday's schedule included a trip to Lowe's for flowers for the flower beds and pots for the front porch and deck. We have a shade garden in the front which is becoming "established" which means the flowers come back each year and there is little maintenance. I love it. The flower bed in the back yard has not reached that stage yet, but is getting there. Each year we add a few things. This year we added "foxglove" which is a pretty tall plant but has beautiful flowers.

The foxglove is the plant in the back. Notice that it has flowers at the top and bottom and plenty of buds in between. To the left of it is a plant called "firepoker" which was planted two years ago when the neighbor thinned his stash of this plant. In front is some small brown eyed susans that we planted last year. Having come back this year, proves they were a good choice! We had to thin out some calla lilies and some of the big red flowers that we don't have a name for. That was some work but is now over with. My husband has a hard time throwing plants out. The whole process of "thinning" was something I had to ease him in to. He figures it is a good thing if you get something to grow and I had to explain that yes, it is good, but too much of a good thing can be bad. We want a variety of things in the flower bed, not just calla lilies and big red flowers. He did work hard as shown in this picture

The big red flowers are behind him with the purplish leaves. The calla lilies are in the center of the flower bed, right in front of his feet where you can see two rows of them poking their heads up. They will bloom in a couple of weeks and are bright yellow. That was pretty much our Saturday!

Friday, May 8, 2009

Mother's Day

My husband sent me this beautiful basket of flowers for Mother's day. It makes my whole office smell good and brightens up the room! I see a miniature yellow rose bush in the front that I can transplant outside and some zinnias that will look great in the back yard.


Yesterday I heard from my cousin, Jim. Laid off from Chrysler after many years, Jim is desperately seeking employment. It is odd how we remain friends after so many years. Our lives are so different but yet intersect on some levels. Our mothers were sisters. Mine was the oldest of nine children and his was the third from the youngest. His family lived in Toledo which was about 3 hours away. They would come to visit their family in Pennsylvania and would stay at our house. My sisters and I would give up our rooms and the kids would sleep in make shift beds of pillows and blankets on the floor. Jim and I would talk for hours while the adults would tell us to hush. During the day, we could always find things to do, card games, ball, and family picnics and reunions. We were only a few months apart in age and even back then our lives were so different. Jim's family were devout catholics. Although my family had nothing to do with church, it was the center of my life. As a teenager, I walked about a mile and a half to and from church every Sunday morning, Sunday night, and Wednesday night. This was no easy task in the middle of winter in Pennsylvania! The more I read and learned of the Bible, the more I wanted to know, and the more ridicule I took from my family at home. Jim's family went to church together and prayed together which was something I wouldn't experience until after I was married. After I left home, my mom would keep me updated on what Jim was doing. He married and had three beautiful girls. My mom liked his wife and that eased my mind as she was a pretty good judge of character. We hadn't connected in years! It was wonderful. I could now catch up with this cousin that I had spent so many good times with as a child. Sometimes we will let a few weeks go by where life gets busy and we don't hear from each other, but then I will open my email and there will be one from him. Not sure how I got so lucky to have this cousin in my life but I am glad I do!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

May showers?

I thought it was April showers bring May flowers but it seems to be May showers so does that mean June flowers?

I've been trying to figure out what bothered me about the Kindle that I spoke of in yesterday's post and I think I know what it is. When I was a teenager, I bought a cassette recorder/player. When my dad saw it, the expression on his face was so perplexed that it has haunted me to this day. He could not figure out how it worked and it was like he saw a ghost. It was more technology than he could comprehend. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my Dad's death and I think he's been in the back of my mind. Now I wonder if I am having the same reaction to this Kindle that he had to the cassette recorder. I am amazed that people think it will replace books. We've always had books. Books have been a big part of my life. We had a metal shelving closet full of books when I was younger, and I think I read every one of them. When I went to school and discovered the library, I would check out two each week. I would read one and my mom would read the other one and then we would switch. We read the entire series of the Boxcar Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner. Isn't that something that I remember the author's name after all these years? This went on until I graduated. In high school, I liked biographies which is what I still prefer. When I discussed the Kindle with my daughter last night, she said it made her sad. She inhereted my love of reading and she can't comprehend a world without books. She even loves the smell of them. I've been pretty good about technology. I am computer literate, I caught on to email when my daughter left for college, I pick up my MP3 player before I head out for a run, I can pay my bills online, balance my checkbook online, and now I can even blog, but I am just not ready to embrace this whole Kindle thing just yet!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

The Kindle

Okay, I have updated the blog, my profile, and even added a couple of pictures. Not bad for the first day. I might get the hang of this blog thing yet. I've heard about blog candy but I am not exactly sure what that is so it can wait for another day.

I've been reading about this little machine called the "kindle" that has. It is for reading books electronically. You don't have to have a computer to utilize it and it is light weight. They say the battery will last for about 4 days. USA Today says that today's three year olds will never know what the inside of a bookstore is when they grow up as this Kindle will put bookstores out of business. I find that hard to believe, especially at the price it is selling for which is currently $349! I do like the fact that books can be downloaded in sixty seconds and the price for a book that is on the New York Times Best Seller list will be $9.99. That's pretty good since some books on that list can be as high as $33 for a printed copy. If you haven't heard about it, go to and watch the videos. It is awesome.

Trying new things

Okay, this blog thing is new for me but I am going to give it a try. Bear with me as I get it organized and begin posting as often as I can (hopefully daily as my blog title suggests).