Category Archives: Fun

Return To Civilization

Not sure how glad I am to be back.  I will post more pictures later but these are views from the cabin.  There was no one but us and our friends for a radius of 2 miles.

Early morning mist

Later in the day..


We pack up tomorrow and Tuesday start heading home.  It has been a blessed trip.  Reconnecting with old friends, Rambling around the mountains, downtime with no phone, no computer, nothing but mountain air and beauty all around 🙂

August 8 Stealing Time

Writer’s Book of Days prompt: Write about something that was stolen

memories often link it
and shrink it
anticipation stretches it
catches it stopping it
waiting and hating the waiting
are hobbies you don’t want to choose
we lose it infuse it
with waste and haste
but a taste of sweet nothing
to do but be in the world
curled with a book or
just look at the sky
think on why we misuse
and abuse it once past
it is gone and you
can’t get it back get on track
like a thief we should sneak
away hide away
run away say that you will
I will too and we’ll steal
all that we need that
we want pay no heed
to the clock tick tick tock
it keeps running we’re
sunning ourselves on the rocks
and we won’t pay a price
or think twice though
the everyday world waits
and skates along fine
with no worry about where we
would hurry back
scurry back it’s still there
and our cares though
we dared we’re not scared
we confess no regrets
do the time take the time
make the time
hold it in hearts take in
filling and swelling
made bigger more room
for the rest now the
test flying colors
of blue, green and gold
flying by through the window
the glass keeps me in
but the air lets me out
throw it wide run outside
breath it in sigh it out
it’s our time we can shout
if we want or be quiet
and dream star filled nights
starlight ridge
builds a bridge between
never ends

Tartan Festival

We spent the day in a pasture in Athens La. at the Northeast Louisiana Scottish Association Tartan Festival and here is a video of one of the bands.   The band is called Needfire and they are from Dallas.  Amazing. I could feel the didgeridoo vibrate in my chest.  We watched the fiddler completely wear out a bow.  I completely wore out my ankles tapping my feet and my hands ache from clapping.

The weather was perfect and I had a haggis plate for lunch.

My grandmother would have loved this.

I loved how in the middle of rocking things out they would all of a sudden throw Scotland The Brave on the pipes into the mix.  These guys had enough energy to power the lights in a small town.

Daughter gets credit for the photography 🙂

Also at the festival:

Alex Beaton

Smithfield Fair

Jed Marum

One Word Humor

Everybody has to get into the act 🙂

and the word really was : humor

I love April Fools Day

if you can’t find you can always Topeka it.  Google also had a vowel outage this morning.  🙂

Big Bang Monday Smiles

The guys are taking a train trip because Sheldon won’t fly.

My favorite quotes (that I could type – some were too long and passed by too quickly)
Leonard: “Sheldon we’ve only been on this train for ninety seconds and you’ve already said a thousand words. Just tell us where to sit and shut up.”

Leonard: “Oh look, now he’s boring on an international scale.”

*Summer Glau is on the train with them LOL (I guess the fact that I know who she is makes me a little geeky)

Howard and then stolen by Rajesh: “It’s hot in here, it must be Summer”

Leonard: “I see, it seems that once again you are caught between a rock and a crazy place”
Sheldon: “I hate when that happens”

Penny: “Hey Leonard what’s going on with Dr. Wackadoodle?”

Sheldon: “Leonard let me tell you something – personal robots cannot get here soon enough!”

Penny : “What up moonpie ?”
Sheldon: “No one calls me moon pie but meemaw”
Sheldon: “She calls me moon pie because i’m nummy nummy and she could just eat me up”

Big Bang Theory Jewels

It has been a strange day and not altogether good.  I have been playing escape tonight watching Big Bang Theory which was a repeat that I had somehow missed. Here are some of my favorite things from the show tonight.

Oh don’t tell her…
We’re playing klingon boggle!
What like she didn’t know we’re nerds?

I LOVE Big Bang Theory!

Word for the night : vociferous – conspicuously and usually offensively loud

phrase for spam and forwarded emails – internet banality

The guys one lab accident away from being a super villain

Sheldon:Woman you are playing with forces beyond your ken
Pennie: Well your ken can kiss my barbie!
Penny: I will not apologize
Sheldon: Well then I suggest you get a very long stick and play panty pinata

Penny is smart to hang out with the nice nerdy guys.  Nerdy guys are much nicer than girls.

I Want To Be a Kid Again!

Just for the toys – ok, forget the kids.  I may have to buy one of these for myself. They are just too cute!


“The Crayola MP3 Player is designed for children 4 and older and has a fun lozenge-shaped control panel with five large differently colored buttons for each function. The MP3 player also features a built-in voice recorder and speaker, for more interactive play. It holds 2GB of music and comes with earbuds as well as colorful letter stickers enabling kids to affix their names to the unit. The player runs on one AAA battery (not included) and can be plugged into the Crayola AM/FM Alarm Clock Radio dock.”

They aren’t out yet and are supposed to run about $49.00.  I can see a whole class of first graders, wearing their little earbuds, and listening to their teacher podcast.  I love these!


Friday night I joined a large percentage of the female population and went to see Twilight with my daughter and some of her friends.  I have NEVER waited in a theater for an hour to get in to see a movie before.  Not even StarWars, Harry Potter, or Indiana Jones.  We were probably in the first dozen or so people let in so we were able to sit near the back which I prefer – I hate getting a stiff neck.  There were a LOT of teenage girls in the theater so I was a little concerned that they would be talking and texting and the usual throughout the movie.  I needn’t have worried though – the minute it started they got quiet and except for the places where they laughed out loud at the movie the only noise I heard was an occasional comment about how something was different from the book.

Those comments made the whole thing a little surreal to me.  When is the last time YOU went to see a movie and heard a lot of teenagers commenting on the differences between the book and the movie?  I have always told my daughter that I would just as soon see a movie first and read a book second because if I reverse the process I am always disappointed. I like my imagination better than Hollywood.

My daughter and her friends had read the entire series.  I have only read the first book and it is a nice romantic story with some violence and vampires thrown in.  I know if I had read it in high school I would have been more enthusiastic – still it was fun to read, fun to watch the movie, and even more fun to listen to the girls who were all completely in love with the “totally perfect amazing, have to see it over and over again”, characters.  I was actually surprised at the amount of grown women sporting “real men sparkle” tee shirts.  I will read the rest of the series and will more than likely go see the rest of the movies as they are made.

This is not a movie for children.  There is violence and the “forbidden love” aspect and while I have heard some comparisons to the Harry Potter series I completely disagree.  Harry Potter does not have sexual overtones and there are messages throughout the stories that promote honesty, loyalty, and kindness.  While Harry Potter is science fiction and talks about magic, there is always this underlying confrontation of good versus evil and good always wins, even though there are trials.  There is a growth process that happens in the main characters as they mature.  Twilight is not about maturing – it’s about sexual tension, and the completely perfect (mainly because it is absolutely unattainable) romance.

It’s a teenage chic flick.


Book Lover’s Meme

Stolen from Robin….My favorite escape….
1. Do you remember how you developed a love of reading?
I started to love stories before I could read.  We had the classic fairy tales on albums and I would beg my mother to play them. I fell in love with reading very young.  The Witch of Blackbird Pond is the first book I really remember loving but I just always read.  When I was in elementary school my best friend had an apple tree in her front yard and her dad read science fiction periodicals.  We would grab a handful and find a good limb and pass them back and forth while we read and snacked on apples.

2. What are some books you loved as a child?
I remember when the library started in our town and every time they got a new Nancy Drew book in the librarian would call and tell me.  I also read all the Clara Barton Nurse books.

3. What is your favorite genre?
Fiction – crime, mystery, and some science fiction

4. Do you have a favorite novel?
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance

5. Where do you usually read?

6. When do you usually read?
I read every night to go to sleep.  I have been doing it so long that if I try to read during the day I will find it hard to stay awake!  I read online all the time.

7. Do you usually have more than one book you are reading at a time?

8. Do you read nonfiction in a different way or place than you read fiction?
I usually read a little bible, a little non-fiction, then pick up the novel to fall asleep.  I also read non-fiction on a kind of as-needed basis and I read non-fiction a lot online.

9. Do you buy most of the books you read, or borrow them, or check them out of the library?
I buy a lot of paperbacks used and non-fiction used from Amazon.

10. Do you keep most of the books you buy?
I keep a lot of the non-fiction and some of the fiction favorites.  I trade paperbacks or give them away.

11. What are you reading now?
Now You See Him by Stella Cameron – murder mystery/romance heroine has sad background, stalked by killer, strong guy woos and protects, lightweight but it takes place in Louisiana on the Bayou Teche with a hurricane coming in any moment.  We have family in the area so it adds a little.

12. Do you keep a To Be Read list?
I have a wishlist of Amazon and a To Be Read PILE next to the bed

13. What’s next?
A Voice in the wind by Francine Rivers

14. What books would you like to reread?
1984, Jane Eyre, Harry Potter, Once and Future King

16. Who are your favorite authors?
Too many to list, J.D Robb, James Patterson, John J. Nance

Denise – I’m tagging you!


Links To Visit

This is the coolest online image application I have seen.  It is called Sumo Paint and has a ton of features!  There are layers, gradients, shapes, brushes, and blend modes.  I played with it for about three minutes and made a little picture (nothing fancy, I know)


If you are in a more serious mood and if you Twitter you might consider in taking part tonight in fact checking during the vice-presidential debate.  NPR is asking that you watch and whenever you hear something that you think contradicts what you have already heard, see if you can find a transcript or video that backs it up and the same thing when a statistic is quoted – try to find the original source.  Twitter your finding with the tag #factcheck in your tweet.
Amazing – NPR will have people all over the country doing their preliminary research for them.  To me this is the interactive internet at it’s best.   What a way to get people involved.  I wish I had seen this sooner.  It would have been fun to have a twitter/debate party!  There is still time – if you have wireless and some friends with laptops get together and participate!

Technology and Cooking

It has been so hot that I don’t care to cook but today I was thinking about summer ending and school starting and I love to cook when it is cold.  Part of the reason for the winter food dreams is left over sauerkraut that I didn’t want to toss out.  I decided to make Hunters Stew or Kapusta as it was know when I was a kid.  I grew up not to far from Detroit Michigan and  a lot of my family’s friends were Polish.  My mother learned how to cook several Polish dishes and this was a favorite.  It is a stew made from drained and rinsed kraut, sausage (cubed pork of you have it), more chopped cabbage, mushrooms, and like most stews, pretty much whatever you have around.  I added a can of pinto beans drained and rinsed, a cubed potato, some baby carrots, and some chopped onion. Put it all in a crockpot and leave it on low all day, fix some cornbread and you have some good eating.

In the winter you could put it all in a big kettle on your wood heater and after a day of running around in the snow, trying to work and run errands, you would come home to wonderful smells and curl up with a good book and a quilt and life would be good.

While I am in the food mood I am going to share some of my favorite food websites.

Healthy recipes and recipes that contain ingredients that are tailored for certain health problems.  There are videos, you can sign up to receive recipes by email or subscribe by rss.  He is selling a book of course and advertising the tv show on Lifetime but the recipes seem pretty good.
Good recipes – again she is selling a book but the website is fun – there is even a game (whack-a-snack) and a section on tips and tricks for dining out and staying healthy.

There are two sites that give you comparison foods – something you shouldn’t eat and a substitute that is a healthier choice.  These are not necessarily sugar or fat free choices – just better.  There are some surprises here.


New on my wishlist!

One of my faves – good country cooking, pictures, and you will feel like you have known her all your life!

Sci-Fi Jeremiah

It is weird to see Luke Perry and Malcolm Jamal Warner in a Sci-Fi show, but I have been watching Jeremiah, one of those post- apocalyptic stories that creates opportunities for all sorts of situations.

In a post-apocalyptic future, a deadly virus has wiped out most of humanity. The only ones who survived, were those who hadn’t yet reached puberty. Now a decade has gone by, and a man called Jeremiah is set on a quest to find a mysterious place his father spoke of, a place called Valhalla

Favorite quote tonight

Kurdy: My mom said there are two kinds of kids.
You give them a box of crap – the one kid walks away – he figures he’s seen enough crap
The other sees the box of crap and starts digging like crazy because he figures if there’s that much crap, there’s got to be a pony in there somewhere!

Jeremiah:  Wow, your mom said crap?

I think I will go make some shortbread

Monday Night Nerdery

I love Big Bang Theory!

Random customer in computer store: “Excuse me – which do I need – firewire or usb?”

Sheldon (Who does NOT work there): “it depends on which bus you have.”

Customer: “uh … I … drive a chevy cavalier?”

Sheldon: “Oh dear Lord! What kind of computer do you have and please don’t say a white one?”


Just a General Update

What is it about the spring – I always fall under it’s spell. I brought most of my plants home from school so they could live on the back and front porches which are their true homes. I started digging up the rose bed today. Dale is tired of fighting with it – Roses are just so high maintenance. We are planning to fill in the area with stone so it will mean a lot more work and quite a few more trips to Home Depot for stone. I’m getting the itch to paint too. We have squash, asparagus, and walking onions growing in the garden. I have herbs and spinach in big pots on the back porch. I’ve already picked spinach three times and it is ready again. There was plenty of rain this year and it has made a difference. Even my peonies have been beautiful.

I managed to get a “start” on cleaning off my desk. I was starting to feel like I would be smothered under piles of paper! Another teacher and I got our presentation submitted for next year at TCEA and I only have one more week of staying late for open lab. The year is winding down. Dale is doing well and Kinsey will graduate. Jessica will get her license and will look for a job.
I bought myself an Mp3 player on ebay and it came today. I wanted something small for carrying when I walk and so far I really like it. The end comes off and you plug the whole thing into a usb port. I spent about an hour this evening dragging songs over to it and then went for my walk and I think I walked twice as far as usual.
Now I am watching Numbers and putting up the laptop and curling up with my book. No alarm clock in the morning and tomorrow is our 28th anniversary. I hope the rain holds off – I plan to work in the yard tomorrow but I’m not cooking. Supper will probably be Magels – mmmm. I’ve got to make the PowerPoint for Sunday evening but with google docs it will go together quickly. BJ is teaching on Romans and I have an idea for a skit for the kids to do on 1st Kings (maybe next month). It will take some time to get it together but I’m starting to put an outline together.

Monday is a weather day so I have extra time to play in the yard. Goodnight world and have a peaceful weekend!

TV Tonight

Big Bang Theory Quotes of the Week

1. there wouldn’t have been any ass-kickings if that death ray had worked!

2. Question – what happened?
Answer – I’m not sure but I think it involves a part of the human experience that has always eluded me!
Comment – Well that narrows it down!

Girls Just Want To Have fun!

It’s Friday night and I’m sitting here with my latte (which just happens to have a tiny but of Bailey’s added) and I am unwinding from a busy and stressful week. I am watching Bones as I write this and I have been surfing my favorite “just for fun” site and decided to share it here.
Girls this post is about a website just for you! Whether you like to shop, connect, organize, or travel there is something for you here.  If you are into food, fitness, home, or maybe have a future mini-girl geek you want to check this out!

There is all this and more at what is actually a group of websites that are divided into specific interests.  I always start out at GeekSugar

You can look at the side bar on the left and as you hover over each category you will see popsugar, yumsugar, lilsugar and more.  These are sites for after work or Saturday morning with a latte and just relaxing.  There are love it or leave it polls, recipes for cocktails, latest buzz on celebrities and plenty of goodies to get your girl on.

So don’t get in trouble with your boss – just take a little “me time” tonight when the re-runs have you bored to tears and you need a little “geek is chic”  pick-me-up!  Have a great weekend

Just Checking In For A Moment!

I have been off the grid since my last post. It has been a very busy week and this weekend is going to fly by! We hosted the District UIL met at our school this weekend and while my part is small, it was fun with lots of payback. I coach Computer Applications (my first year) and my student took fifth place which I think is wonderful considering this was her first year to compete. My own kids attend school in the next district – a weird think I know but we are a small area geographically but have three school districts. My daughter placed second in Computer Applications and My son placed third in Extemp (I hope I have that right or I will never hear the end of it!)

A friend is at WordCamp Dallas 2008 this weekend and I hope learns some great stuff to share. I would love to have gone but too many conflicts this weekend! I will have to be content with searching for posts to read to live vicariously!

We have joined a small group bible study and we meet on Tuesday nights so that is one night we are busy, and then we are trying to attend two different churches right now which is confusing but we are trying to work out some things. One place has incredible teaching. the other has definite issues but we went there for years and many of the people there are like extended family. We have gotten involved with a small Sunday night praise service and tomorrow morning there will be a youth led service and then in the evening we will continue that theme but I AM TO GIVE THE MESSAGE. I have been struggling with this all week. I would have preferred a skit but they are doing one with the kids in the morning.

I’m relying on Luke 15 and the parable of the Prodigal Son but I’m concentrating on the eldest son. I would really like it to have meaning and bear fruit and I don’t want it to be about me. If you are a praying person I would ask for your prayers for this service that I would disappear and the Word would do whatever God needs it to do in this place and at this time.

There will be very little rest this weekend so I’m going to crash and burn early. I still need to do some more writing and tweaking. This is the first and maybe the last time I will ever do this – it is such a huge responsibility. I can’t imagine what it would be like to do this week after week. I AM looking forward to the kids’ skit. They will be goofy and cute and forget stuff but isn’t the way it always is?

For now world, goodnight! I will try to get some more tutorials up in the next few weeks.

Switching To A Mac Part 2

safariIcon.jpgHow do I get to the internet using my Mac?

The Mac comes with it’s own internet browser called Safari. Look for the icon that looks like a compass. Things will look very similar to any other time you have gone to the internet. Whether you have used Internet Explorer or Firefox you will see the webpage, a box that contains the URL or web address, and buttons for maneuvering around. Here is a screenshot that is typical of what you will see:

On the left you see the three little round buttons that let you close/minimize, or maximize. Just below them you will see arrows for going backwards or forwards. A button to refresh the page (looks like a circular arrow) and a plus sign which lets you add the current website to your bookmarks (favorites)

Down on the right bottom corner there is a little triangle with lines across it. You will notice that when you click the maximize button in Safari it doesn’t fill the entire screen. You can drag that triangle to make the window even larger.

If you are like me and even the bi-focals are not quite enough anymore there are a couple of key shortcuts that you will love. Command (apple) key and the plus sign makes the text on a webpage bigger. You can press the key combination several times to get things large enough to read. To go back to the normal size just press command (apple) key and the minus or dash sign. If you don’t like keyboard shortcuts you can do the same thing by going to view on the toolbar and clicking make text bigger or smaller.
There is another way to make things easier to see. First practice scrolling by using two fingers on your trackpad. You can drag two fingers towards you or away from you on the trackpad to scroll. If you do this (or use your mouse scroll wheel) while holding down ctrl you will be able to zoom in to particular areas of the screen. Just move the wheel or scroll with two fingers, away from you.
To go back to normal just scroll towards you.

This zooming technique works on everything – not just Safari.

As in everything on the Mac – you can always click help on the toolbar and find answers to your questions there.

There is a box to the right of the URL where you can type words to search for.

If you decide Safari is not your cup of tea you can install Firefox for the Mac. Next time I will talk about how to install an application so you can do just that!

I will be posting on using the Mac for the next few weeks and if you have a question I will be glad to try to find answers for you.