Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Living Dangerously

I'm grabbing life's bull by the horns and taking no prisoners! (Do you like how I just grabbed random cliches that are completely unrelated and mixed them together with my bare hands?)

In the past two days:

**I mowed the lawn...with an electric lawn a the ocean. Yowza! Can you feel the adrenaline?!

**I allowed my kids to paint for hours at the dining room table. Seth and Lily included! My heart was a-racin' indeed.

**I baked 5 dozen cookies and one loaf of beer bread...and I only ate one cookie. I washed it down with a glass of Slim Fast. Bring it!!

Now I'm on fire to see what other damage I can do!

How have you lived dangerously this week?

Monday, September 21, 2009

What I Did On My Summer Vacation

Okay, so this update is long overdue.


Beach Days

Swim lessons


Independence Day

We adventured on a three-week vacation from Texas to Missouri to Indiana to Ohio...back to Texas. We survived. Thrived. And I have pictures to prove it.

Oh, and Rob had to work, so the four kids, one dog and one mom drove up without him. He was to fly up and meet us in IN the second week. I feel like I accomplished something significant in simply getting us all there in one piece. And...the first leg of the trip was without A/C. It was 107 in Austin when we drove through, if that gives you any indication of the heat factor. But, good news was in the works.

First stop, Denton, TX to crash on my sister-in-law Stacey's house. Great things happened here. 1.) I saw my awesome nephews Bill and Kelly. They are great. 2.) I got to meet Stacey's kind and handsome boyfriend, Sean. 3.) Kind and handsome boyfriend finished fixing the A/C on our van, making the remaining hours of July travel far more enjoyable.

Here's a picture of Stacey and Sean:

Next stop, Halfway, MO, my place of birth, and where my parents, paternal grandparents, and a few aunts and uncles and cousins live. My mom had to work the evening we were to arrive, so we just stopped at her restaurant, grabbed dinner there with my dad, and visited while she finished up her shift.

Isn't she the cutest waitress?

Then we visited with my parent for three days. We relaxed, played, visited. Great times were had by all.

My favorite picture of my dad:

It was hard to say good-bye to them. I have been gifted with very supportive and loving parents. They are a great blessing to us.

Next stop 12 hours later: Etna Green, IN.

I saw siblings, nieces and nephews, friends, more friends, and my precious maternal grandparents.

After Rob's conference, we headed out to Ohio to visit with Rob's family. Lot's of R & R was had by all. Just what we needed.

Our last stop in OH was to good ol' Ludlow Falls, where Rob went to Teen Camp as a youngster and where he and I counseled as older youngsters. We thought the first night of camp meeting was to take place on our last night in OH, but alas, we were a day early. We explored the creek instead.

So, I may have overwhelmed you with pictures. Not much different from old vacation slides, but believe me when I say that I spared you, because I still have HUNDREDS more. Just wanted to give you the photo-synopsis and not the entire manuscript. Maybe you can come on over for dessert and coffee sometime and I'll show you the rest!

And though we had a wonderful time, we were so happy to be back home. For the first time in eight months, Texas really felt like home.


Besides trying to get caught up from being gone for three weeks, the highlight of August was Caleb's birthday...but he deserves a post all to himself, so I'll write that at another time.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


Long-ago friends of ours from college have an awesome band called Threadspinner. Jon and Sarah Ziebarth moved from Indiana to California several years ago (like ten, maybe?) so Jon, who is now a brilliant research scientist, could attend grad school at Stanford. Jon used to play in a band called Fresh Cod, and they practiced in our musty basement in South Bend. Good times. Sarah is a beautiful vocalist.

They just released their first video "Night Chorus" this last week. I love it! It's sweet and artsy and beautiful. I know you'll enjoy it, too. Check them out!