Sunday, June 29, 2008


This picture does not do it justice! I just about dropped what I had in my hand and I think I repeated, "Lee!" over and over until he came in to see what was going on! This picture was taken through the glass window in our kitchen and the deer was standing in our garden, sticking his tongue in our birdfeeder! The three of us stared at each other for quite some time. She was beautiful.
Lee was able to get the door open and was excited to try to get a "better picture". This is how it turned out! We just laughed!I hear people complain about the bunnies and deer in their yards but it doesn't bother me. After 12 and a half years living in Minneapolis, I like the wildlife visiting our yard. (Although I am glad that the woodpecker moved on after a few weeks of 5:00 am wake up calls! And DON'T get me started on squirrels!)

See, Josiah, we shoot deer a little differently in the city...

Late Pictures of Moving Day

Just getting started...
Last time sitting on the porch...
Loading the trailer with all the high school boy help...
My nephew, Josiah, packing the computer stuff...
The crew at the new house after prayer for the new adventure...Last time eating on the deck...
"Official" last time locking (for sleeping there...we have had to go back at times)
Nighty-night in your new house! (In a temporary bed until their new one arrives from the fabulous Becker Furniture World)
They are pretty settled in now! Just need the old house to sell...

Friday, June 27, 2008

Thankful Thursday (a little late!)

Ok, yeah, yeah, I know. I am posting Thankful Thursday after Foody Friday, but I just didn't get a chance to post!

It turns out that Thursday was a day to be thankful (well, every day can be for one reason or another, if you have the right attitude, I suppose) because we got the most recent blood test and cat scan results for my Mama and still NO signs of cancer!! Praise God!

Dr. Shelton's Soothing Ginger Tea

Today's Foody Friday post features my very own creation: a soothing cup of ginger tea that's guaranteed to help you relax. The following recipe is for one serving.

All you have to do is slice up about two teaspoons of fresh ginger...

...put it into one of these...

...and place it in a cup. Next, pour the boiling water and steep for five minutes.

Add a splash of lemon juice and sweeten with a tablespoon of honey.

This miracle concoction is great for indigestion, sour stomach, nausea, sore throat, coughing, nasal congestion, muscle aches, and a host of other maladies.

What are you waiting for? A prescription? Try some today!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wonderful Wednesday!

The most WONDERFUL news!! We are FINALLY done with all the projects at the parental units' former home. It is ready to LIST! We are SO excited! I also got to eat at one of my fav-o restaurants, PF Changs, with my co-worker and boss, courtesy of Entertainment since our books are going to print. After, we stopped at a store and I tried something on. In a COMMUNAL changing area. Huh? What's that? Oh. My. Gosh. TP!! haha!! Sorry if this is too much info, but my Mama always taught me to put TP on the seat. Apparently, a piece made it's way into the back of my pants. Gratefully, my shirt was long enough to cover said piece of TP. My co-worker, Shawn (a female), said, "I have never seen that in real life!!" And along with me, was laughing! I thought after Turdy Tuesday that y'all would get a kick out of this! Hopefully Thursday will be Thankful Thursday - with no bird poop, TP or other bizarre surprise!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Turdy Tuesday

[moving day photos coming soon]

Today wasn't terrible. But it wasn't great. Lest I get too whiny I will list a few positives. I saw a bad car accident and I wasn't in it; I was able to get our adoption paperwork overnighted to the Haitian Consulate in Chicago; and I have a great family. But I had icky things to deal with. There is an issue with one part of our Haiti adoption paperwork that I can't go into but need prayer for a resolve. A weird, unexplainable thing. Part of the problem is the fact that we don't know how to go about resolving it. When that happens in life, the "thing" eats at ya and when you turn it over to God to handle it creeps back into your brain space.

The next thing was that I had a work related thingy to deal with. Also annoying and brain space invading. To top it all off, a bird did it's duty, or doody, on me. On my head. SMACK on the TOP of my HEAD. (I can hear you laughing...cut it out) So with all of this, I treated myself to an ice cream cone. The ice cream fell off the cone. It was one of those days where I was glad I had a cell phone so I could ask Lee to start a hot bath for me before I even got home. So - here's hoping for a better tomorrow...or we MIGHT have a Whiny Wednesday on our hands.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

Don't Call ME a DIVA!!

Check it out, folks, I can get down and dirty with the big boys! I have scraped, sanded, sealed, peeled, planned, prepared, prodded, primed, painted, pulled, pushed, purged, packed, produced, proclaimed and everything else along with the best of them!! It has been an exhilarating, exhausting process. I NEVER thought I would be excited for the day that my parents moved out of their house - we moved there when I was nine - but when the time is right, it's right. And we all know it. Pics of the moving day in the next post!
(in the last pic you can see the white powder on the camera!!)

Sorry, Girls!

I know what you're thinking, but I'm sorry! He's MINE!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Corene Bean

This weekend was so fun. I went garage sale-ing with my niece Jenny and her kiddos and we had a blast. Saturday night, Corene, Matt and Jenny's oldest, had her very first all-by-herself-sleepover. Here she is in the backseat with 8 lilac bushes that we spliced from my folks' place.
We took Corene to her first movie in the theater. Of course we had popcorn. We saw Kung Fu Panda and we all gave it two thumbs up.
We got home late, so straight to bed! The dogs happily joined her - and they stayed with her during the lightning and thunder! (June LOVES that scottie dog which was a gift from Lee to me - and it has a squeaker in it - you can see her gunning for it here...)
And here they all are...Here are the girls hanging out before church...such good pals.
We met up with the rest of the family at church but thought we better get a picture of the three of us to commemorate Corene's first sleepover!
And maybe next time, little sister will come along...

Monday, June 16, 2008

I'm in Denial...

One of our cats, Nika, died on May 29. We had thought that Ezra would go first -- he is older and isn't necessarily, um, doing very well. In fact, he has been tossing his cookies for some time now. He is losing weight (our big fat cat ain't so fat anymore), his front legs shake when he is sitting or standing, he's meowing often (not like him) and leaving undesirable deposits around. We think it may be time. to. call. the. vet.

The vet is Carla, our good friend (pictured here with the pups), who in this case, would make a house call since Ezra doesn't handle car-rides very well. We have been discussing the inevitability of this for some time. My father, a former farmer, has also offered to "take care things" for us, but I just can't go that route. I don't even want to know what that route is!

Ezra is somewhere around 18 years old or so -- 16 and a half of those years have been with us. Are we really going to have to say goodbye to both of our cats within weeks of each other? After all these years of cats? I. am. in. de. nial. Ezra is the one who has let two year olds pull clumps of fur out of his side and he just looks on. He has been stepped on, laid on, sat on, and he just deals. He is the best cat with kids and everyone loves him. He gets along with our dogs well. He sleeps by us. He has an extra special quality. I. am. in. de. nial. Waaaaaah................

Friday, June 13, 2008

Eat Dessert, Help a Child!

This weekend, Wendy's is donating .50 of every Frosty purchase (and they have a much larger selection now!) to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. I am sure you recall that the founder of Wendy's (Dave Thomas) was adopted as a child. Please consider stopping by to treat yourself to something yummy while you help US kids get out of foster care and into permanent homes.

Random Updates Again

March 13 marked 27 months since our LID - log in date. (China entered our paperwork into their system on 3-13-06.) The CCAA processed 10 days of paperwork this past month which is a far cry from the 30 days they used to do, but an improvement over the 2-3 days they had been doing most recently. If they keep this pace, we MAY get Olivia's referral in '08. Umm, we're ready.
I have not been as good at marking the details of the "Paper Chase" of Patricia and Philippe as I was with Olivia because of all the Mama Drama, but wanted to catch you up on a few things. One is that I had forgotten to get the MN documents state certified. I had already gotten the state certifications for our birth certificates from CO and LA, and my employee letter from MI, though. Got that step taken care of and now a copy of our dossier is in CA getting translated into French Creole. As far as I understand it, once we get that back, we send it to our agency, who sends it to Haiti, and then our (hopefully not...) two year countdown begins. Please pray for our kids. While they wait to come to a home they know very little about. Please pray for us as we want them home before 2010!! Please pray for the government of Haiti - in upheaval - to improve. Please pray for all the adopting families and waiting children. And for all the kids without families. Please boycott UNICEF or at least read this article from NEWSWEEK decide for yourself.

Praise God, Mama's feeding tube is OUT!! She is done with all her therapies, and they move into their new townhome on the 20th. WOW.
Also, here was the forecast I saw today on my computer this morning:

This is the weather we DID have:

So glad the meteorologists got that one wrong. Hello to our dear friend, Fred, who is a meteorologist and who I am SURE called this one better than the rest! :) Hi Rico! Hugs to you and Jinglebritches!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Foody Friday - Hubby's Favorite Foods

Well, as you know, I am not much of a cook. Since Jenny wants the theme this week to be Hubby's favorite foods, I asked him what to post. Born in New Orleans, most of his relatives are still in the south, in Tennessee, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. Lee said that if he had to choose a last meal it would be Gumbo, Cornbread and Pecan Pie. He said if he came home and found this meal, he would probably die, so in fact, it would be his last meal! Har-dee-har-har. (I have OTHER skills!!) With help from my dear Mother-in-law, Marsha, (the BEST MIL you could ask for, by the way) here are some classic southern recipes.

Louisiana Seafood Gumbo (serves 4)
(Most Cajun recipes start with, "First you make a roux.")
4 large onions, peeled and finely chopped
1 stick of butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 quarts seafood stock
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 cup sweet green pepper, finely chopped
1 cup celery, finely chopped3 bay leaves
4 teaspoons dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper, or to taste
Salt and lots of freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 pound raw shrimp, peeled and deveined
1-1/2 to 2 cups cooked crabmeat1-1/2 cups fresh oysters
File powder, to taste
Cooked white rice

1. In a cast iron pot or skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions, and sauté until they are soft and translucent. Do not brown.
2. Slowly sprinkle the flour over the onion mixture and using a wooden spoon, stir it into the butter and onions. Continue to stir gently until the roux takes on a rich, dark brown color. This may take 20 to 30 minutes. Lower the heat if necessary to keep it from burning. (Do not leave unattended.)
3. While making the roux, heat the stock until it is very hot. When the roux has acquired a dark brown color, pour in the hot stock. (If you are using a skillet to make the roux, transfer it to a medium stock pot when it is done and then add the stock.) Stir until the roux and the stock are combined.
4. Add the other ingredients except for the seafood, file and rice. Stir and simmer very, very slowly for 2 hours. Then add the shrimp and simmer gently for 20 minutes. Add the crab and simmer a few minutes. Toss in the oysters and simmer until their edges curl, just a minute or two.
5. Serve hot in a big bowl with hot cooked rice. Sprinkle with file powder to taste and serve. Other types of gumbo are chicken and okra, shrimp and sausage, or other combinations of seafood, meat and fowl.


1 c. yellow corn meal
1/2 c. all purpose flour
1 tsp. salt1 c. buttermilk
1/2 c. milk1 egg
1 T. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 c. plus 2 T. shortening

Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Heat shortening in an iron skillet, muffin pan, or other baking pan. Combine corn meal, flour and salt in mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, combine buttermilk, milk and egg. Add baking powder and baking soda. Stir. Add 1/4 cup melted shortening, stirring constantly. Pour into hot pan, smoothing surface with spatula. Bake for 20 - 25 minutes or until golden brown on top. If desired, spread butter over top when removed from the oven.

Pecan Pie

4 eggs 1 c. brown sugar (dark or light)
3/4 c. light corn syrup (can use dark)
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. melted butter
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 cups pecans, chopped
9-inch unbaked pie shell
1/3 cup (about 25) nice looking pecan halves

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Beat eggs well in a large bowl. Add brown sugar, corn syrup, salt, melted butter and vanilla to eggs, mix thoroughly. Sprinkle chopped pecans in pie shell. Pour egg mixture over pecans. Arrange pecan halves around edge of filling next to crust for decoration. Bake on middle rack of oven for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees and continue baking for 25 to 30 minutes, until set. (May take a few minutes longer.) Cool to room temperature and serve.

To be clear, my MIL prefers to serve french bread with her gumbo.

To be clear, I don't think I will be making a roux anytime soon but only because I don't want Lee to drop dead. And, um, what is FILE powder? Ok, so, honey? I am taking you out to a restaurant for Father's Day!

Sunday, June 08, 2008


April 8May 7 June 7Cravings are a funny thing. My Mama has been craving a corn dog for a few months now. Of all the food in the world she wants a corn dog! :) Well, the great news is that Mom has PASSED her swallow test and can eat solid food now! Her speech therapist, Garrett, told her, "You can go eat a corn dog now!" So I took her to the A & W Drive In and she finally got to eat one! Mom hasn't been shy about her bald head - if someone looks at her a smidge too long in the store she will whip off her hat and say, "Wanna see it? Ain't I cute?" So of course she was totally fine with it when I asked if I could blog her peach fuzz. It is really coming in! Good thing, too, because it is getting too hot to wear a hat or scarf!
Sincere gratitude to all who have supported me and my Mom through this whole thing. The emails, notes, calls, cards, thoughts and prayers have sustained us both. Thank you so much!!

This Week's Weather Forecast

They say that if you don't like the weather in Minnesota, wait five minutes. Well, I don't think that's quite accurate.

As we were about to turn in last night, we noticed how warm it was in the house and wondered if we should turn on the AC. "What's the temperature going to get down to tonight?" Dawn asked. I didn't know.

I wasn't at a computer, so I called the free KARE11 weather service and put it on speaker phone. This is what we heard...

(If the flash player doesn't load, click here.)

There's nothing like a good laugh just before going to sleep!

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Tardy ADHD Weekend Update (it jumps all over, folks!)

Yeehaaaaaaaaaaaaw!! My parents bought a townhouse! It is l-o-v-e-l-y! And it is one mile from our house. God. Is. Good. Considering my Mom came home from the hospital on May 7, this is pretty fast action on their part, no? It has everything that they need on one level, but has a good-sized lower level for their 5 kids and their spouses, 16 grand-kids, 2 grand-kids-in-law, and 3 great grand-kids or any combination thereof.

When yet another run to Home Depot was required for all the projects at my parent's house, I grabbed my nephew's keys and his kids and we got the emergency stash (Jenny was teaching flute lessons). Here are the kids in the "CARt". The girls had a fun time "driving" while Isaac played with something I dug out of my purse. I had a lot of fun, too!

One of my favorite things to do is to go garage-saling. To survive the long Minnesota winters I hit the thrift stores, but that only addresses the chick who likes a good bargain. The garage sale is is a bit of Americana, a glimpse into other's lives, and my favorite part - the people. People are always nicer at garage sales. If the same people were shopping next to each other in Target, no one would be chatting! (pausing to lament over how long my hair was in this picture...GROW, HAIR! GROW!)

So when my friend (and former neighbor), Carla, called and asked me to go to the area-wide garage sale day in my old neighborhood I had to go. I was a bit conflicted since both of my sisters were in to help work on my folks' house, but I just decided I needed to take a couple of hours and GO! It is sooo fun. It looks life a county fair there are so many people walking around. In years past I have tried driving, but you only get stuck in the alleys waiting for other pedestrians or cars. I tried to walk it one year. Too slow! Too much ground to cover!! So, last year, I rode my bike. And I ran into Carla. On her way somewhere. This year she decided that she would like to go, too, so off we rode and had a GREAT time (I always have fun with Carla!) and it was such a lovely day. I have a basket on my bike (I have the most beeee-u-tiful bike...) and I also brought a backpack. I left my camera at my parent's house, so no pics of the event :(, but I did take a picture of a couple of the things that I got!

We found twin bedding for Philippe's bunkbeds (that we ordered last weekend while furniture shopping for my parent's furniture at the fabulous Becker Furniture World). I got beige and burgundy soft canvas-y duvet covers with shams. I was kind of bummed because I really had wanted plaid but couldn't argue with the praticality of the price. For some reason, I had pictured plaid in my head for his room. Then, at another sale, there was a plaid queen duvet for $5! So I am going to make curtains and pillows for the beds, and I think that will be better than if I had plaid bedding - too much PLAID!! Plus, Curtains, bed covers, and pillows all for $13. I just need to get duvets at IKEA sometime.

Ok, so switching back to the existing parental home - if I was really smaht I would have taken before pictures, but alas, I am not so smaht, so here are just a few after pictures. These are all the main rooms on the upper two levels. The lower two are, well, not done yet!!

Cleaned off walls, mudded holes, fresh paint...

This is actually Patricia's new bedding that we are using to "stage" the small bedroom that I lived in from 1979-1986, before I moved downstairs to the big bedroom. Looks different now...I had Granny Smith apple green shag!!

After almost 60 years of marriage they bought a queen-sized bed for their new house - I told them they are gonna wish they had done that sooner!

This is the most wonderful view from the deck. In high school and college we would set up a volleyball net "down the hill" and had a blast!! One really hot day we filled water balloons and played volleyball with them - never really knowing when they were going to pop!

Ok, so my last random ramble...we have had a lot of severe weather lately. I haven't been in a tornado warning in years, and then I was in two in less than a week. Unfortunately, there were two deaths when a tornado touched down in Hugo. I take the warnings seriously and it drives me crazy to see my husband watching out the window!! Here is the sky after the last warning in our area. There were no touchdowns, thankfully.

Ok, I shutty uppy now :)
Blog Widget by LinkWithin