Sunday, September 14, 2008

Monday Musings

Thank you for making the effort to continue to be a part of my life. It means so much to me. I do feel your support and love.

I know many of you are still living in summer mode, but we are definitely into the beginnings of autumn. It is more than a nip in the air in the mornings. In fact, as I ride my bike to the gym, it's more like a BRRRR factor. I even caught a whiff of fireplace in the air one recent morning. Some of the leaves are already changing - -

Speaking of the gym - the good news is that I made the cut to the final 8 contestants for the cruise to Mexico - I was asked to write a short essay. I realized after I turned it in that I left out several important points that I meant to make. Oh, well. Tomorrow we'll know the winner. I heard that one guy had lost an enormous amount of weight - I don't know how it is physically possible to lose that much in only 3 months. Fortunately, weight loss was not the only factor in the decision.

I took a little trip back up to my old office the other day, with Feisty and one of her buddies along for the ride - and of course, the twins. Did I tell you about the goofy lady I worked with who told me not to bother to bring the girlies when I came to visit, but to bring a dog??!! HUH??? Did you ever hear such an insensitive thing to say to a grandma?? I think it's a good thing she never had children. A very good thing.

Anyway, the girls and I were walking around campus, and I have to say that I was pleasantly surprised to see far fewer belly buttons showing than the past few years. It's about time a bit of modesty returned!

Retirement - I jokingly told everyone, when they asked what I was going to do with "all that time," that I was going to do what I felt like doing and not do what I didn't. Well --- I have tried to have my mornings to myself. Riding bike to the gym, working out, and riding back home takes a good bit of time. I am trying to get things in my house in order one mess at a time. I took some pictures, but am embarrassed to show them. Maybe I will later. It is taking me alot of time to complete each individual project. In the meantime, as I work on these projects, my nice little room becomes inundated with piles as I sort and toss. I must have thrown out 500 recipes this week that I was quite sure I'd never use. I am a great saver of things I might someday try - not likely. So I'm decluttering one cupboard at a time. We're in the throes of deciding how to re-do our kitchen. I'll have to do before and after pictures when we get that far.

More about retirement - one of our dreams, once DC has retired as well, is to take a trip to visit every place we have lived - being preacher's kids, both of us, that will cover a lot of ground. We will go to Minnesota, Nebraska, maybe Iowa where he was born, Michigan, Illinois, Kansas, Arkansas, and Oklahoma. Hopefully I'll get to visit some of you!

My afternoons are spent with Feisty and the twins while Kristen studies. (I neglected to mention in my back to school post that both of my adult children are back in college - exciting times). If anyone thinks you can get anything done while you care for baby twins and a 4 year old, I beg of you to let me know how it's done! I've been attempting to get my fall things out and on display for a week now - don't even have them out of their storage place yet. Maybe this week.

Speaking of which -- have you ever known of anyone who could ruin Rice Krispie Treats? You know these simple little things that take 10 minutes to make??

Well, now you know somebody - me! We eat at church on Wednesday nights and it was my turn to bring a dessert. I had everything I needed, and wanted to bring something kid friendly. I rested just a few minutes too long while the twins napped - the minute I put the butter and marshmallows in the pan, I heard their little squeals. I turned down the heat and ran up to attend to them - when I got back, the marshmallows had begun to stick to the pan. I decided to pour the mixture into a bowl and microwave instead. The marshmallow volcano erupted in my microwave - the bowl was too small! So I got a bigger bowl and attempted to pour the mess into it - but the little bowl was SO hot! By the time I poured the mallow mess onto the cereal, it had become too hard and I had one big gloppy mess - and most of the krispies weren't even coated. At that point - a pan and two bowls later, I threw it all in the sink and headed to the grocery store for something from the bakery. I'm usually pretty proficient in the kitchen!

We ran out of bird seed the other day and took awhile to get the feeder re-filled. For several days our visitors came to check, then they disappeared. It took several days after the food was replenished for the finches to return. They also brought a cute little chickadee. There is another feeder hanging from the Austrian pine. We have quite a few resident squirrels as well - this one particular little guy is very persistent --

I have been going through a lot of pictures, beginning to try to decide how to sort and save them when I begin the huge project that I'm planning for winter. So many of them bring a post possibility to mind. I thought I'd share this one with you just for the fun of it. I got braces when I was 33 years old. I was very happy to be able to get my teeth straightened, and my doctor loved adult patients, because we did what we were supposed to do! I even wore headgear - the doctor told me that every hour of headgear wear took an hour off the other end - I wanted to be done as soon as possible. I worked in a school kitchen at the time and the kindergarteners, when they came for their milk break, would say, "Look she's wearing bracelets!" So cute. I'll never forget the trip we took when I was in the middle of wearing rubber bands - finding a place to brush my teeth and replace the bands was a challenge. But it was so worth it.

Can this grandma do a bit of bragging? Care Bear was saying her prayers and she said, "Dear Jesus, please let me have some harder math homework tomorrow. All they have is 3's and 4's and 5's, and I know those already." What a kid - she's reading at 5th grade level - in first grade - the youngest kid in the class. Sorry, I couldn't resist!

Wrapping up this crazy mish mash of mental meanderings - on a more serious note.

I have been reading through the Bible chonologically this year from The Message. I just finished Ezekial and chapter 20 has stuck with me. Four times in that one chapter, God states that He is so tired of the rebellion of His chosen people. He says that he seriously considered unleashing his anger on them, but "I thought better of it and acted out of who I was, not by what I felt." I believe God is still acting out of who He is, not by what He feels, as He watches us self-destruct as a nation. Then in chapter 22 Ezekial quotes God saying "I looked for someone to stand up for me against all this . . . to take a stand for me and stand in the gap to protect this land so I wouldn't have to destroy it. I couldn't find anyone. Not one." I trust He can find us standing in the gap.


Christa said...

Love the pictures of the squirrels on the bird feeder. I haven't had any of them yet. I captured some pictures of humming birds tonight, I was just outside playing with my camera and the cat when they buzzed by, and I was near the feeder.
I agree modesty really needs a come back. If some of these young girls really knew how they looked to others they would be appaled.

I will retire the end of this school year, and look forward to some extra time to clean out. I am trying to do some decluttering now, before my daughters wedding, as we will have a housefull of family. Next summer we are planning on driving to Colorado, Superior is outside of Boulder, and who knows where else as Elizabeths future husband is re-enlisting in the military after the 1st of the year.

Take care and God Bless.

Susie said...

Hi Dawn,
I love your ramblings! It's truly just like sitting down for a nice chat. How great that you got your braces as an adult. Your smile is lovely..
I'd say you have every right to be very proud of Care Bear. She sounds so smart!
I'm sure you're very very busy with the girls so I wouldn't worry about the Rice Krispie treats. Those things happen..

Deb - Mom of 3 Girls said...

I'm so glad to be able to catch up again! :)

I have to agree about being very, very glad that girls' clothes are getting at least a little more modest again. It's been much easier this year to find clothes for my girls that I'm ok with having them wear - and I just hope that it stays this way until all of these little ones are grown, at least.

I'm having a hard time getting things done with just a 2-year-old around in the mornings - I can't imagine trying to with 2 babies and a 4-year-old. :)

I saw Michigan on your list - yay! :)

I haven't tried to make Rice Krispies Treats in years - that would be a good project for the girls and me though. Maybe we'll have to see if we can give them a try soon.

Way to go, Care Bear! Hannah's going to be similar, I think - she's already reading chapter books along with Abby and just started kindergarten. :)

Sorry this comment is so rambling - that's what you get for a rambling post though, I guess! ;)

Hootin' Anni said...

LOL...I would have started doing the rice krispies in the microwave in the first place. Now reading your little ditty on your experience not only made me laugh, but it also reminded me of our daughter...she isn't a cook in any way...too funny.

Oh yes....Autumn in Colorado! Nothing like it. Here, on the coast we do actually have a change of season but it's not until about mid January...the leaves fall, but by March it's all in full bloom again.

You lived in Nebraska at one time? I was born there.

Tin Grins are in...I like that.

Great post for the day Dawn. Have a terrific Monday. said...

Hi Dawn.

We've no signs of autumn yet. It is still quite warm and muggy here. Autumn is just around the corner though.

My those squirrels are so naughty. It is a wonder the birds visit at all.

I have made those rice krispy treats. A friend of ours shared a delicious recipe to make them using peanut butter and then icing them with chocolate. It was delicious. I'd love to make them sometime.

Have a lovely Monday,


Theresa said...

Hi Dawn,

I've finally arrived at your blog!

I'm just leaving work, so I'll comment later when I'm home.

Judith said...

I love that part of the Bible verse about standing in the gap. Reminds me I have a responsibility to stand up for what I believe in, and you are so right about our needing more modesty. I seriously doubt the younger generation knows what that word means, but it's not their fault. Adults accept whatever the marketplace sells. Lets the media tell them what's decent and what isn't.

On a lighter note, I appreciate your photo shots, especially about Autumn, and good for you, for making the effort in the weight loss contest. and, to end this long note, It is wonderful about the grand daughter's reading level. You should be proud.

Sherry said...

Rice Krispie treats are one of m most favorite snacks...I think I need to go stock up to make some:).

I know that you followed the Micah Crimmin's cancer battle-I can't remember how I learned of it, but for whatever reason, they left me on his email updates. Anyways-he relapsed a couple of months ago and passed away this morning. Sorry to leave such a sad post for you-but I knew you and Kristen followed his story a while back and thought you'd want to remember them in prayer. I just want to run home and hug my kids. Just doesn't seem fair.

Mimi said...

wow, it's hard to believe that you are already in the leave changing mode of fall...I just love all the pictures of leaves changing...
we just go from summer to less hot...
that little squirrel trying to steel the birdseed is quite the acrobat...I'll bet the birds gave him a fit if he was still there when they came for their daily meal...
I am so happy to be able to keep up with your blog again...

Robin said...

My - that was a newsy post!
I love the story of your Rice Krispie bars! Somehow it is reassuring to know that even the "proficient" have their kitchen moments!
Our trees aren't changing yet - I don't want them to either! I love summer and the older I get the less I love winter.

A Hint of Home said...

Hi Dawn,
I think I got this figured out but I may only be a guest for 30 days. I guess at the end google will let me know.
You sure have your hands full. It's so sweet that you are able to be there for your daughter and granddaughters. I know it's a sacrifice and they are lucky to have you.

It's still around 90 here and no leaves are changing yet.
I've had the same mishaps in the kitchen. (frustrating) Have a good week.

Linda said...

It's good to catch up with you Dawn. I haven't been doing any commenting these days but wanted to let you know I'm thinking of you.
I'm pulling for you to win that contest. What a great deal!

Coe said...

You need to check out Katy's blog. She finally wrote again. I think life is very busy at school!
See you Wednessday, Coe

Penless Thoughts said...

Boy what a nice, newsy post. I enjoyed it all.

It is a great misconception that upon retirement you have all this time....not so.....we just find more things to do!!!

Sure hoping your essay will win you that trip.

When you get to Oklahoma I trust you'll make it my way and we will get to meet :o) What fun that would be. I'll bet you and I would have so much to talk about we would "talk over each other"!!

I did the picture scanning last winter from photos from my youth. I stuck with it, once I started. It took a LOT of time, but I am so glad I went ahead and tackled it. Our biggest problem was locating the proper scanner for all the 35mm film we had.

Hootin' Anni said...

I'm back this morning for a request...a prayer request. You can find details on my Tuesday blog. Thanks and have a happy day today my friend.

Maine Mom said...

Autumn is in the air here, too and the leaves are changing. There is a tree near our library that I would love to take a picture of, but I never have my camera with me when I go by it.

Yay for being one of the 8 finalists in the contest!

Great job decluttering! It takes up a lot of time, but I bet your house looks and feels nicer every time you work on it.

We have a squirrel that does the exact same thing on our bird feeder!

Wow, Care Bear is a great reader! Her prayer was so cute. :-)

Mary said...


Doing anything with kids around is difficult. I usually just spend my time with the boys and then catch up later. It's easier that way.

I understand about your cleaning and decluttering. I must do the same thing and I am ashamed to show any photos. Since May we have been spending all our time on renovations and then I've had the boys at times, so all of my housework is WAY behind. We're hoping to finish up soon and then the race will be on to get this place ready for Christmas.

Great news about Care Bear's reading. Congratulations! Of course grandma's have bragging rights.

Jordan has been reading at an adult level since 4th grade. He reads quite a bit and really enjoys a good book.

Take care and have a great week.

PEA said...

Good morning Dawn:-)

How I love the pictures of the trees with their Autumn colours!! When I was gone into the city the other day (it's mostly forest between here and there) I noticed how the leaves were starting to change but you seem more advanced than us. With the frost we had this morning, though, it won't be long until Mother Nature wears her Autumn colours here as well!!

Goodness, imagine that lady saying not to bring the kids but the dog! I agree with you, it's a good thing she never had children! lol

Decluttering is indeed a very long room at a time, that's all I can suggest. I'm in the process of doing this again, what I didn't get rid of last year, I'm getting rid of now since I haven't used it since last year! Did that sentence make sense? lol

Oh Dawn, you ruined the Rice Krispie Squares? I didn't think it was possible! hehe Just teasing you of course:-) I actually know a few people who can't make them. lol

Look at you with the braces! I think it's awesome that you decided to have them at that many more people are doing that now, especially the ones who couldn't have it done as children because of lack of money.

Awwww I can see why Care Bear's prayer would bring a smile...what a darling she is and SO smart. Must take after her grandma:-) xoxo

Tammy said...

I love this picture of you with braces! You look adorable!

As for me, in the very near future, I may invest in getting my teeth whitened at the dentist. I had tetracycline as a child which stained my teeth badly and they now have techniques that can at least help. They'll never be truly white, though...but I think even in my 40's, it's not too late to do something like that, don't you agree?

Good for Care Bear...what a smart cookie she is! I don't blame you for bragging!


Nancy said...

WOW! Smart grandkids... you have a right to brag. And how about both kids in school. Transitions are sometimes hard.

Good for you on your dedication to the exercise routine. I bet you feel better too.

I love your autumn photos. It reaches you earlier than us and I bet the cooler weather feels nice. It was in the high 80's here over the weekend but we are suppose to see cooler weather soon.

Plan a trip to NC while you and hubby go on your tour. I would love to cross paths with you.

Midlife Mom said...

I too had braces as an adult. I was 40 and my son was in his braces too so we suffered together. I'm glad I did it though. I never did have to wear head gear.

I think your trees have turned more then ours. We are getting a few but not much. Just one here and there.

Glad to hear there wasn't as many belly buttons showing at the school. Those low rise pants should be outlawed! I hear they are going out of style and I hope that is true! If I ever see my granddaughter dressed like that I will put her over my checkered apron!!

What a nice prayer! Care Bear is one smart cookie!

I've messed up the easiest of recipes myself. Usually it's when I am in a hurry. I have my two grands this week so I'm not getting much done. I am trying to declutter one kitchen cupboard at a time. What a job, why do we keep so much stuff?!

Your yard is so pretty. That squirrel does look very intent on what he is doing!

I hope you win the contest!

nancygrayce said...

The leaves are gorgeous! It is even a little cool here in the mornings, but not very. I've been walking every morning and today I didn't sweat until I was a full block away! :) That squirrel deserves to eat if he can get something upside down. My sister also had braces as an adult!

groovyoldlady said...

I know that Kristen REALLY appreciates you and the time you spend with the kids because....brace IS impossible to accomplish much of anything with little people in the house.

However, that'll change as they grow, so for now embrace the chaos.


Sioux said...

Good for Care Bear!! Sounds like our Jennifer, who is now in 7th. She is writing her first novel...and wants to be called J. K. Smith (as in J. K. Rowling) as her name is Jennifer Kathleen.