"Have you thought about writing your family history, but found yourself stuck from the start? Writing a family narrative can be a daunting task, but Karen Jones Gowen found a way to bring her mother's story to life." (Homespun Magazine)

Thursday, September 30, 2010

I'm Going to be a Marine Mom

Monday, September 27, 2010

Wasting Money is Stupid

I just got back from a sales meeting where a new guy talked about a company he worked for once that was on the verge of getting a huge contract. The boss said, "If this goes through, we'll all be sitting on the beach in Hawaii throwing hundred dollar bills in the air."

Of course, this image, which is meant to be a powerful motivator simply puzzles me. Why would you throw the money in the air?

Why not go shopping with it? There must be some fabulous restaurants in Hawaii where you could enjoy lobster, and all the amenities for that hundred dollars. Or go buy some great shoes, purses, and make up. Get a spa treatment.

Or is the idea that you have so much money that you can do all these things and still have enough to throw away?

If that's the case, then how about giving it to homeless people? Or better yet, find a nice catholic nun (aka Whoopi Goldberg in Ghost) and give those hundred dollar bills to her instead of throwing them in the air.

Is it possible to have so much money that ever wasting it like that makes any sense whatsoever?

Friday, September 24, 2010

A Lovely Day Involving Pie

Yesterday we picked 4 boxes of gala apples from our tree. They weren't quite ready but I got overzealous so there they are-- not as wonderful as they should have been but still nice, large, slightly tart apples. Of course everyone wanted pie. When they all want pie, it's fairly easy to get help in the kitchen. So my youngest son, a high school senior,  made the crust for two 9 in. apple pies while I cut up the apples.

He said:  Mom, remember last year when we had Pie Week?

I said: Yes, that was so nice. You learned how to make crust and every day after school we made a new kind of pie. Pie Week was fun.

(There was apple, peach, and something involving pudding and whipped cream I think, but I can't remember all the kinds of pie. I only remember how delightful it was that my teen-age son wanted to be in the kitchen with me making pie. That doesn't happen often. In fact, only then. And today.)

He said: I was telling my friend Megan about Pie Week and she said when they make pie at her home, she makes the crust while her mom does the filling, and when they're done they roll out the bits of dough and sprinkle cinnamon and sugar on top and bake it. I thought it was weird that we did the exact same thing.

I said: My mom used to do that too, but I didn't help her much with anything. She and I didn't cook together like we're doing now. Shall we have Pie Week again? We can make more pies than this. You can come home from school everyday this week, and we'll make pie again.

He said: No, let's just do this one. What did you do that was wild when you were young? Did you toilet paper anyone's house?

I said:  I never heard of that when I was a kid. But once a friend and I wrote nasty things about another friend on a bathroom wall. And I used to smoke straws. You light the end of a straw and smoke it.

He laughed.

Anyway, we had a lovely afternoon, and the apple pie was delicious.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Is This a Crush?

Conversation at dinner table:

18 year old son (high school senior): So this girl comes up to me at breakfast and says, 'Hey, can I have a drink of your juice?' And I say, 'Sure.' So she takes the cup and SHE DRINKS THE ENTIRE THING! I was so mad. So then her friend comes over and starts eating my cinnamon roll. Just picking away at it until it's GONE!

Me (highly knowledgeable mom and a girl with 3 sisters): She has a crush on you. They like you.

Son: No, they don't.

Me: Yes, they do. That's a girl's way of saying 'I want you to take care of me and feed me for the rest of my life.'

Son: No, it isn't. Just because they come up and annoy me and eat my food doesn't mean they want to marry me and live with me forever.

Me: Of course not. It's all subconscious. But yes, underneath that is what they're saying, although they don't realize it. Believe me, I know how girls think. One or both of them have a crush on you.

Son: (scoffingly) No, they don't.

What do you think, people? Is this a crush or not?

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Sometimes I miss our dogs

We had a Doberman named Lugosi and a Bassett Hound named Tara. Lugosi died first, just a few years ago, and Tara followed the next summer. I am truly surprised she waited that long. They were the same age, had grown up together and were as bonded as a brother and sister--the kind who never fight, who do everything together, laugh and get in trouble together and play jokes on other people.

Tara & Lugosi used to work together to destroy the back fence. He would pull on boards with his teeth, she would dig out dirt underneath with her big paws, to give him more biting room. They'd keep at it until there was broken boards and splinters all around, and a hole big enough for them to squeeze through. Then they would be free to run around the neighborhood. They never went too far. And they were always together.

Neighbors would see them and phone us, "Your dogs are out."  Lugosi looked scary. After all, he was a large Doberman with cropped ears and tail, at attention, ready to attack. But of course he never did. He just looked like that. Can a dog help the way he looks? Tara flopped around, following Lugosi everywhere. She somehow made him look cuter and more innocent, probably due to her Bassett hound cuteness.

Tara wasn't very bright. One time an upstairs window was open without a screen. Tara saw something go past on the front yard, probably a cat, and decided to chase it. By going through the window. My mom and I were in the living room and saw Tara fly through the air in front of our picture window, her big ears flapping. She fell on the grass, tumbled back up and went chasing after the cat.

Yes, sometimes I miss our dogs.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Here's a good idea-- take the kids to see a film about the end of the world

One night awhile back my husband and I went to see the film 2012. And behind us was a family complete with soda cans rolling around the floor, who knows what other snacks they brought into the theater in mom's big purse, and a couple young kids. Just a fun, family outing to see Hollywood's version of what happens when the earth's core heats up and destroys the world.

This is a pretty good movie, my husband and I thoroughly enjoyed it. But not what you'd want children to see. Aren't kids prone to nightmares anyway, without help from the latest Hollywood disaster film?

So how about it folks. Take your little ones to see a film where California is completely destroyed in about 5 minutes of awesome computer graphics. No, that won't give them nightmares. How about where a dad tries to rescue his two boys and dies in the attempt with the boys watching and screaming? Sure, why not! It's all fake after all. The kids know that, right?

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Day our Nation was Attacked

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Canning Tomatoes

Monday, September 6, 2010

Stupid Things I attach Value to

Things I attach value to that have gotten out of control:

Plastic bags of all sizes (Yes, I know! What idiot saves these? And I wasn't alive during the Great Depression either.)

Purses and canvas bags (What is it with my obsession with having stuff to carry stuff?!)

Empty water bottles (I like to refill them and drink water out of bottles instead of glasses. Go figure.)

Oh, wait that's not all-- empty soda bottles of a certain shape, for use as water bottles (Is it because I live in the desert?)

Paper, any and all kinds, including the sheets that still have one good side ( I could write a novel a year until I die and still not use all this paper!)

Gallon size Ziploc bags (these at least make sense. Rinsed out & dried they're quite reusable, but not if they had meat. Then I throw them out.)

Books. (You've heard of cat ladies? I'm the book lady. Every room in my house has a stack somewhere. The least I could do is put them away, right?)

DVD's. (Stupid to buy them since I only watch most movies once or twice.)

I could go on, but these are the worst offenders. I'm not a saver. Actually, I do quite well at decluttering and tossing or giving away, but this list is my toughest challenge. What's on your stupid save list?

Friday, September 3, 2010

Bringing in posts from my original blog-- Has anyone ever heard of Vox?

Vox is where I started blogging. I did a lot there until I discovered Blogger. Goodbye Vox. I visited now and then and wrote the occasional post. Now they are shutting down, and I'll lose my posts by Sept. 30. Since most of them were daily life type of stuff, I'm going to transfer a few of them to here. This one was when it was mid-summer, and dang I still miss summer!!

Today I watered the front lawn-- the dry spots--timing the sprinkler 30 minutes on each area. I know Utah is a desert, but I don't want to hear about growing native plants yadayadayada. I've eliminated over half the grass that was here when we first moved to this house, and what's left I like to keep green thank you very much. Which takes water, especially in July and August.

Meanwhile, while moving the sprinkler around all afternoon, I also did laundry and edited a manuscript. Heated up some lasagna from the freezer for the fam, and went back to sitting, watering and editing. Under the ceiling fan in the living room, of course, which is the only tolerable spot in our house from about noon to 9 p.m. 

Tomorrow is a family party so I just finished making a HUGE batch of caramel corn. Why don't I learn to be conservative in my food prep? Because I'm a creative cook and add a little of this, and more of that, and try this, and oh yes two cans of evaporated milk how will that be? It's not getting to soft ball stage, I need to add the rest of that bag of brown sugar. Until I have a huge pan of caramel. Better make more popcorn, I don't like it too sweet. And four giant pans later I sit down under the fan again to write about what I did. 

If I did photos, I'd take pictures to show you. But I like to draw pictures with words. It's good practice for my writing skills. Not that you folks get much in the way of my writing skills on this blog. I pretty much just blather away about whatever's on my mind.

Haha, nothing's changed there. I still use my blog to blather about whatever's on my mind.Only now I do it here instead of on Vox.

Shooting the TV

I want to shoot the TV like Elvis used to do. Good thing there are no guns in the house or that TV would be history. We haven't had cable for years. We were so happy with our old-fashioned antenna wires hooked through the attic, getting all the local channels. Plenty for us, since the major network channels provided what we like-- PBS, Law & Order, Criminal Minds and sometimes House. 24 Hours when it's on. When I'm by myself, I like to watch American Idol and America's Next Top Model. Those are our TV shows, and we watch erratically, not caring if we miss anything. No tivoing or anything like that. We are very 20th century TV watchers.

Then came the digital age, and we were forced to buy that little box if we wanted to continue watching our TV. So we took the $40 coupon and bought our digital box. It works half the time. Some channels don't even come in. And sometimes when we're in the middle of a show, it starts sizzling and blacking out.

It's like the old days, the Fifties--when you would have to go bang on the TV to get a good picture. Only I don't want to bang on it, I want to shoot it and put it out of its misery.