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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Never Be The Same - song lyrics

(words and music: Mike Troxel)
Twelve men on a raging sea
Fear gripping in their hearts
Afraid that God He would not hear their prayer
Fearing that they would die
All along laying right beside
Was the answer to their call
They would never be the same again
They would never be the same again
One woman against an angry crowd
Enduring judgment and shame
Afraid that God He would not hear her at all
And she'd be condemned to die
All along standing right beside
Was the answer to her call
She would never be the same again
She would never be the same again
Much of my life I stumbled along
Ensnared by my sin
Afraid that I had gone way too far
Feeling my soul had died
All of a sudden deep within
I heard an answer to my call
I will never be the same again
I will never be the same again
So surrender your heart
To the maker of the stars
And the mover of the great four winds
And the healer of your soul
You will never be the same again
You will never be the same again

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Another Work/Rest Day

I just looked at the clock and can't believe how late it is! But, addicted as I am, here I am checking in to blog again.

Today was a work/rest day. In the morning, Susannah, my daughter-in-law and grandson went to the bank to clean. They have a big box of toys, so we moved them into the break room (which has no cameras) where the tot could play. 

We got it all cleaned in record time of 3 hours 51 minutes, (combined time). 
After that we went to Subway and ordered subway sandwiches. They were really good, with lots of veggies and chicken.

Then, we dropped off my daughter-in-law and grandson. Susannah and I cleaned the insurance office in an hour together. Then we cleaned part of the doctors' offices (the exam rooms, break room and hallway). I will still have to go in on Monday, but not until 8:00 to clean the other offices.

After that, we went home.  By 7:00 my daughter-in-law and Susannah and the grandbaby went to our friends' restaurant. My son and his wife got a janitorial job cleaning their restaurant 2 hours every evening. He also has a census job starting Monday. Susannah babysits in one of the extra rooms while they work.  

Tomorrow I will be going to church in the a.m. (my niece might come) and in the p.m. I was invited to go to a spaghetti feed at the Salvation Army church by my new young novelist friend. I invited the elderly lady I work with and am going to pick her up.  It should be fun. The money they make on the spaghetti feed is being donated to an orphanage in Uganda I think.  It should be fun.

It is very cold here now, but our house stays warm. The rest of my family is enjoying the Mexican sunshine!

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

What is it?

I admit I did change the colors from the original photo. I liked the original, but I thought it already looked abstract, so I worked with it a bit more on photobucket.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Rest and Work

I need to get to bed soon, but I want to write a little first.  Today went well. In the morning  I went to church with Susannah. I really enjoyed being in the worship service. There was special prayer for anyone who wanted to come up to the front. A lot of people did, including me.

The message was basically on how to stay out of debt during the Christmas season. It was pretty practical ways to save money. A lot of people spent way too much for Christmas. It really shouldn't be stressful. I see how stressed out some people get. We did not celebrate Christmas for many years for various reasons. The last few years we have been and I enjoy it. I think it can be used for good, enjoying family and enjoying giving, remembering Christs' birth...

And now... to talk about work again... (It seems that's all I talk about lately).  I did have to clean today. I decided yesterday I would rather do it today. Because a lot of offices were supposedly closed, I thought it would take an hour just to check the rooms and clean the windows.  But, it turned out that most of the rooms had been used. The rooms I cleaned Wednesday were still pretty good, but a conference room that was said to be "clean" needed vacuumed bad.

All in all, I got it done in 3 hours. I am keeping track of my time to see how long each room takes.
The only problems I had this time was that key 108 was also supposed to unlock room 109, which it didn't. The caretaker showed me where the extra keys were.  It seemed that Cindy, the other janitor,  opened it with that key, but it didn't work for me. 

My son and daughter-in-law and grandson came home today. Esther made hash browns and eggs for supper, which I really like. My grandson "washed dishes" for a long time. He loves playing in the water.
Susannah, my 13 year old was able to go ice skating today. She ended up staying with a friend all day, skating and later visiting. It helped me out, as I worked and I don't like to leave her home by herself at night.
It is going to be cold tonight I can tell. Tomorrow I'd better get my snow tires on!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

What's been happening lately

I haven't written here for awhile. The last time I wrote I was looking forward to Judah's wedding. Now he is married. It was a beautiful wedding.

I also was starting to try to write a novel in a month. I only have a few days left, and I only made it to 11,100 words so far. I only will have Sunday and Monday to write. This has been an exceptionally busy month. I've had extra work; a new job that started last Monday. It's cleaning a very large building that used to be the Junior High I went to school at!

Greg , Levi, Gideon and Clemy are in Mexico helping remodel at the deaf school in Mexico. They are building walls, kitchens, bedrooms and bathrooms in an already existing structure. Greg took a team down, consisting of 12 people in all, including our family. Susannah stayed home with me. Our oldest son, daughter-in-law and grandson are living with us right now, and left for a week for Thanksgiving.

I will include a photo that has nothing to do with anything, except that I took it and like it.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Hello there...

Tomorrow I will joined all the crazy people who will be trying to write a novel in a month. Even though it sounds like my priorities will be mixed up, I really do not plan on putting a lot of time into this until after Judah's wedding. That will be a priority, to get ready for!

I can't believe that my 3rd son will be getting married soon!

I wish I had more to write. All I can say is that I have been working 4 mornings a week, clean 2 houses a week, then clean 2 more businesses on Saturday (the family helps with those). Other than that I am learning Algebra with Levi and Gideon. Then R. has been helping with the girls' school work a lot. It is really fun having T, R and D staying with us. R has been helping out a lot with the cooking. The girls enjoy having their other "big sister" here.

The Mexico trip is happening right after Judah's wedding. I will be staying behind keeping the janitorial business going. Susannah and T, R, and D will be here with me too.

I wish I had more to say, but I'm tired.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

God's Favorites

I was very happy

To see you today...

To see you are doing better.

I will keep praying for you.

Don't give up.

Hang in there.

God sees you-

He cares about your life.

Someone once said to me,

"You know, we're all God's favorites"

I will never forget that.

So, remember if you are feeling down,

You are God's favorite,

And so am I.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Shoes in Tree

I took this at a skate park on a trip we made. In Mexico we would see shoes over power lines, up so high. Two kids once got electrocuted while trying to get shoes off the power line in Mexico. This is the first time in the USA I have seen shoes put up high in a tree like this. Some looked nearly new.

Friday, September 25, 2009

What is it?

Can you tell what it is?

hursday, September 24, 2009

Bridge Over Water

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Old Farm Machinery

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Monday, September 21, 2009

Ride at Six Flags

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Prism Windows

This was taken with my Sony cell phone camera in the "Underground Tunnels" taken from within the tunnel. These prisms were made to send light to the tunnels beneath the city. The tunnels were where the Chinese resided and some businesses many years ago. Now they are not used, but the city makes money on them by giving tours. An interesting tour to take.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Colors and Shapes

This started out as a photo of a wire fence in light and then I changed it in photobucket to make it in to something quite different.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Solarized Hallway Image

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Arizona Sunset

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Utah Rocks

Monday, September 14, 2009

Train Tracks

Catching up - 9/18 to 9/26

Friday, September 18, 2009

Another Parade and cleaning houses

We started the day out taking chairs down to where we wanted to sit for the parade. You have to get them there early to save a spot. Then, later we drove downtown. I parked the Toyota Previa in the railroad parking lot, but the police didn't think that was a good idea, so I moved. I don't know why he had to write my license plate number down though!

This parade only had wagons, people or horses. No motor vehicles. There were also marching bands from different schools in the area. After awhile the aroma got a little strong, but we saw a lot of very pretty horses.

After the parade I cannot remember what I did until I went to work cleaning houses. At 1:00 I stopped by the elderly lady that I help to see if I could come a little late. I gave her 2 zucchini that I got from our friend. She told me she was going to make a squash soup. Then I put a load of laundry in her washer and left for the other job. At that job, I cleaned 2 hours, then I returned to the other house and finished up her laundry and vacuumed. Her granddaughter came over with her husband and 2 kids. I'm sure they could help her with the laundry I didn't get done, as she had a lot.

We had just plain rice for supper, as I was too tired to cook. I didn't have any though, and just ate watermelon.

Susannah and Clemy spent a lot of their day with our friends. Clemy went on some rides and felt sick on the last one.

The 3 older kids ushered again. Tomorrow is their last day.

Tomorrow we clean the bank and the insurance offices tomorrow. If we all work together it won't take long.

Greg wants to go downtown to listen to some music with me, so I better go. Until tomorrow... Hasta Luego!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Working Together

I didn't get up till 9:00! After that I woke the kids up. Then I picked Greg up where he was working on our Dodge van. We went to the only good coffee shop in town. It was full of tourist wearing cowboy hats and boots. Some people were having pizza and beer for breakfast. We got 2 coffees and 1 big cookie to split. They have 1 free refill there and good coffee.

Despues... (after that) we went to do the "bank" job - cleaning job I mean. All 6 of us worked and we got out in an hour. Some of us worked less and waited for the others' to finish. After that I took Greg back to our van so he could finish working on it. Then, 4 of us went to clean the insurance offices. We got it done in 35 minutes. That's a record, but if you counted all our time separately, it's not as good as when Gideon and I clean by ourselves.

Now we are home. I'm doing laundry and going to REST.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

BBQ in our yard

Bedtime. We had 2 different families over for a BBQ today. We made shishkabobs. Mostly I have been eating a lot of fresh veggies and more fruit. But today we had meat. I made "pico de pajaro" salsa, which has to be made outside because of the hot chili vapor that gets into the air. It's made by roasting "chili de arbol" over a fire, or burner, and then putting it in a blender with salt, tomato sauce, and garlic. It turned out very hot and good.

It worked out really well having both sets of friends over at the same time. The 2 husbands knew each other from playing basketball together a couple of years ago. Their seemed to be enough in common with everyone for a good visit for all. There were 10 kids here altogether, and 6 adults.

I get Mondays off if I work on Thursday morning, then come back Thursday evening at the doctors' offices (cleaning). I like Monday off!

We are starting home school tomorrow. I have charts for the kids and we'll have a little meeting in the morning of our goals.... I got a really good Algebra 1 curriculum that will be coming in the mail soon. It was made for home schoolers and comes with a CD teaching and text book. If we really like it, I hope to get the same curriculum for Susannah and Clemy. That will have to come later though.

Monday, September 21, 2009

First Day of Homeschool (this year)

Today went fairly well. In the morning I slept in till 8:00. After we had eaten breakfast, I had a little talk with the 4 kids at home about what were our goals for the week. We are just going to stack the morning dishes, then after lunch Susannah is going to wash. Clemy puts them away before Susannah washes and maybe after and also wipes counters, puts food away and sweeps.

I gave everyone their charts. The boys went downstairs to do their schoolwork. I gave Clemy and Susannah some placement tests in Math. Clemy did her schoolwork on my bed and Susannah on the kitchen table.

I spent a lot of my morning sorting through school books and "stuff", trying to find places for everything. We only have 1 bookshelf and it is very full. I put some books under my bed also. After we get some remodeling done, we can put another bookshelf downstairs.

My brother stopped by to visit. While we were visiting Gideon offered to make spaghetti for supper. I really appreciated that because then I could visit with my brother. It turned out good. I did stop by the store and got some more spaghetti sauce and bought garlic bread. I forgot the salad, so we had broccoli with it.

The girls and Levi walked to the library, then I went to pick them up.

We are all going to bed early.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Anybody like Fried Green Tomatoes?

I am thoroughly exhausted. I got up at 6:40 and got to work at 7:15, which is quite late. Greg and I had coffee at home and I just didn't get out the door soon enough. So, when I get to work late I have to work smarter and faster. I got most everything cleaned before the first office person came. There are 3 rooms I cannot clean unless I am supervised as they have patient files in them. My friend Christy, who is an office worker told me her tomatoes were frosted last night. I had checked the weather report and it wasn't supposed to get that cold. But, my brother later told me that they take the readings and forecasts from the airport. Maybe it is warmer there.

When I got home, I checked our garden. All the plants had succumbed to frost. The fruit was fine, only the plants dead. So we picked all the green tomatoes, jalepenos and squash.

I spent a great part of the day cutting up green tomatoes and jalepenos to put on the food dryer. I also took the food dryer apart and cleaned it out as it hasn't been used for 10 years. I let it dry in the sun before using it. It still works great.

Homeschooling went fairly well, considering that I was busy with other things a lot. Susannah has forgotten a lot of her math she learned last year so she is going to have to review some. The new Algebra 1 textbooks and CD's haven't arrived yet. Clementina got a lot of library books, so when she gets her schoolwork done she likes to read.

Greg took Gideon to work with him. He is framing a house about 20 miles away. The boys will probably work with Greg 1 or 2 days a week still.

For supper I made fried green tomatoes with onions, eggplant and bacon. I also made cookies earlier. My healthy ones wouldn't hold together very well. They were chocolate chip with sesame seeds and wheat germ.

We haven't eaten yet and Greg just brought Susannah back from gymnastics so I have to go now.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Our Personal Testimony

I only have a minute to write. A busy day. Sometimes I wish I could clone myself. The Algebra curriculum came, it looks great. My meleluca order came. Home school went OK. I had to take a 2 hour nap in the afternoon because I got to bed too late last night and was tired today. Took Levi to the doctor today to have his thumb checked out. He slammed it in the door Saturday. I wasn't worried about it, but today I realized he could have severed his tendon and wanted it checked out. It is fine and will heal. I learned about how to check if a tendon is severed and how to wrap a bandage.

We went to church tonight. Upstairs in one room was the kids. In another room adults and the missionary challenge class. Downstairs the youth.

In the missionary challenge class he taught about how to write a personal testimony. This class is for Christians, so the writing would be about 1. Before I met Christ - what my life was like. 2. How I met Christ - what happened and 3. How my Christian life is going and what I have learned. We each spent 10 minutes writing an outline and then different people shared their testimonies. The pastor encouraged people to write a more detailed and then share it - perhaps with family, friends. He even suggested you-tube. I thought of my blogs.

I do believe as a Christian I need to share my faith. I try to share in a more natural way and intertwine what I say with every day life. But I don't think I have as much courage as some do at times, knowing others will disagree or find fault. I do want to be true to God in what I share and not worry about what people think of me. In some ways I think we should be concerned with how we share and try not to offend as much as possible. But sometimes that is inevitable.

Tonight, after church, there was a lady outside that came up to Greg and told him her story. Her 14 year old son got in trouble for what she said were minor things. They were going to send him to a group home, or a place for teens. A guy in a blue car that she didn't know showed up and told her son he would hide him and took off with him. That is so scary. She asked us to pray for him. His name is Stephan if you want to pray with me. I am really concerned for this kid. Who knows what kind of person took him away. Unless God intervenes she may never see her son again.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Getting our Computers Connected

In the morning I went to the Chevron gas station and had coffee with Greg inside. There was a policeman just leaving and Greg talked to him about the boy that I had wrote about last night. He was getting into trouble and was supposed to go to a boys home, according to his mom. She also told us that he got into a car of a man she did not know. I was really concerned. The police told Greg that about every 2 days she reports her son missing. He said she was "not all there". I feel bad for her. I wonder how people like her get to be like they are now. Was she always that way or did something happen to her?

It's getting difficult to write at night sometimes. That's when I like to write, but it's also family time.

Today has gone pretty well so far. I still got to work later than I should have, but working fast I got it all done in time.

I did the 1st Algebra 1 lesson with the boys. It comes with a 10-15 minute lecture on CD first. Gideon didn't want to do it, as it was too easy, but I told him we were all going to anyway. He missed 2, so I guess unless he gets 100 % he can't say anymore. It is a fun program with pictures.

I am utilizing the different subjects I have on the computer. We don't have one set "curriculum", so I mix and match different things. It's way more interesting that way. I am hoping to get some friends who have skills in different areas and ask them if they will teach a class.

Levi is a genius. He was able to connect all our computers together so I can use files off of the other ones and vise versa. He still has some bugs to work out, but now I can use the printer from my laptop, as long as the other computer is on. Levi said what he did was actually pretty simple, but it sounds quite complicated to me.

I am also using the "break timer" that gomedome made available when he was doing his blog.

I found a really basic Bible study online. It's free, and if you want you can send in the answers to the quiz at the end. Here's the link for it. It has different levels and looks fun.

Basic Bible Facts

Greg has been working long hours doing construction. His shoulder was hurting yesterday. I'm not sure construction is doing his body any good. Janitorial is less demanding I think. If we were able to get enough janitorial jobs then he would quit doing construction. But if I know him, he probably will keep doing it, because he likes it and if the job is there he will take it. I don't want to get more cleaning jobs than I can do on my own, or I'll be in trouble. We are not in the position to hire employees yet.

I need to go check on all the children.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Another Busy Day

I didn't get up till 8:00, which was very nice. In the morning I did Algebra 1 with Levi. Gideon wants to finish his Algebra 1/2 book and then he can catch up with Levi.

Levi's finger is getting better. It's still sore, but healing.

A week or so ago I paid a bill with Bill Pay with our bank. But, the problem was that the default account was my eldest sons' and had been closed for awhile. The bill was reversed and they suspended my ability to use Bill Pay. I called them today and almost got it straightened out, but got cut off. Finally, in the afternoon I went to our bank and "Tim" helped me get it fixed.

I cleaned one house in the afternoon for 2 hours. The other one I worked for 1 1/2 hours, helping an elderly lady with her laundry, vacuuming, mopping and visiting.

Susannah cleaned the fridge and made cookies when I was gone today. That is one job I do not like to do, and it is so nice when she helps with it.

When I was done I ended up getting U-Bake pizza, as I didn't have time to make supper. Then, the kids and I drove to our friends' (10 minutes late) to baby sit for their 3 kids. The parents had a date night with another couple we know. The other couple are the doctors where I clean offices. They had fun and a much needed date.

While we were at our friends', I left for awhile to take the clothes out of the elderly ladies' washer and hang them up. I hate leaving wet clothes in her washer, as she can't go down the stairs and has to call her son to help her. Or, worse, she will try to go down. She can hardly walk and I don't want her to get work. The other house I work at is a few blocks away, so I stopped by to get my check. I told her $25, when I actually was supposed to get $45. I was tired and wasn't thinking straight. So, tomorrow I have to go back and get another check. I don't want to let it go for a whole week.

I am very thankful for all the fresh veggies and fruits we were able to eat this summer. I wanted to go to the Farmers' Market tonight, but didn't have any time, so I missed out. They will still have at least 2 or 3 more before they close down for the winter. I hope next week I can go and get something good to eat!

Well, I need to get to bed. I will try to catch up on reading blogs tomorrow. It is getting difficult to find time to be on blogit. I am busy all day and then Greg doesn't want me to stay up late. So that leaves no time. But, it will all work out.

Susannah cleaned the fridge out for me today and also made chocolate chip cookies. Susannah cleaned the fridge out for me today and also made chocolate chip cookies.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

A Friend Came by Just At the Right Time

It's getting late, so I'd better write while I can. If I am not able to read blogs now I think I'll have time tomorrow and Monday.

I was very glad when we got the 2nd cleaning job done, as I didn't really want to clean today.

I felt a little down. I think I started getting in the wrong frame of mind, saying things like, "I don't have any friends here." Then I remembered Velda, but thought she was so busy all the time.

After that, Greg said he would take me out for coffee. Right about that time, Velda and Richard showed up and they ended up going with us. We had a very nice visit. God knew I needed them to come when they did.

They had some sad news to share though. One of the nice "kids" that worked at the coffee shop died about a week ago. I'm not sure how, but it could have been a drug overdose. There was one this last week with a guy about the same age - 23 -

About a week or so ago I was thinking about him and thought of praying for him. He seemed to be on my heart. Why he died, I do not know. Why I felt to pray for him, (as I don't even know him), I don't know. But God knows why.

I just got off the phone with my daughter in Mexico. She is doing good and I miss her.

I called the lady I worked for yesterday and told her I had said the wrong amount for my check. She's going to pay me the difference next week.

It is still quite warm in the day here, but at night it could get cold. I bring all my house plants in at night. I dug up my flowering cactus and hope to keep it alive all winter indoors. We might buy a grow light to keep our plants healthy.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A few days worth of journal

Mon 9/14/2009 8:52 PM

Do You Hide Your House or Car Keys?
I am quite tired and I only have a few minutes to write. I watched some friends' kids today, took our boys and one of theirs to the skate park, went shopping...

I drove out to the ranch this afternoon to get some canning jars and my canner that has been in storage. After I had driven a mile down the road, Clemy popped her head up. I didn't know she had wanted to come. Susannah stayed home with the boys, as they had to usher again tonight. It was Susannah's idea. It reminded me of the time our dog "Sarah" came to church with us. We had gotten half way to town when she popped her head up. It was almost as if she was saying, "I wanted to go too!" At that time we were meeting in a home fellowship, so that day our dog came too!

Anyway, I got my canning jars and then we ended up eating supper with my sister, brother-in-law and nephew. After visiting awhile I drove back into town, giving my nephew a ride to his apartment.

When Clemy and I got home, the "hidden" house key had been moved and I couldn't find it. So, we tried to get in the window, but the stupid storm windows kept falling shut on me. Finally, we went through a bedroom window, climbing up the fire escape stairs.

I was talking with my nephew on the way to town about how many people had a hide-a-key under their car or a "hidden" key under a rock or the mat of their house. We lost a key in Mexico that way. Some things had gotten stolen from the rental house, and the "hidden" key was missing. I thought I knew who did it, so I told her about how someone had broken into our house to see if she reacted. That happened another time in Mexico, when a cinch for a saddle had gotten stolen out of our horse trailer. I suspected one boy, so when I saw him, I asked him if he could keep a look out for it. He told me he would. I found out later from the neighbor boy, that he indeed had stolen it, but couldn't get it back because he had sold it for $5.

Tue 9/15/2009 10:47 AM

Trivia of the Day
I got to work a little late. On those days I have to work smarter, so I get everything done before the office workers come in. When they get there, I can clean the other 3 offices.

Now I'm home. My stomach has been feeling sick. I'm wondering if I still have the flu bug or if it's something else. I need to get going on the canning. I have 1 box of peaches to do, which really isn't very many. Susannah suggested just eating them, which might not be a bad idea. I'll see how many are left after I freeze a bag or 2.

We are all going to meet Greg for lunch at a park, near where he is working. The weather has been nice. Yesterday it was about 80 degrees I think. I am watching the Cook's 3 kids until Randy off work. They may stay later if everyone is getting along well. Yesterday they had a lot of fun. The boys are making a tree house and the girls played under it for along time, sweeping and making a pretend kitchen... In Mexico we had a tree house and that was Clemy's favorite place to play. She misses it a lot I know.

If I work in the morning tomorrow, then I'll get Monday off again. My friend who works at the doctors' offices is going to come in so I can clean. I like Mondays off. (There are 3 offices I can only clean when someone is there because of the patients' files)

It might be getting crazy in our town, as the Rodeo starts Wednesday. The last time I went to any of the Rodeo or town events was when I was 23 and worked for the Newspaper. I worked in the darkroom, and they used me as an extra photographer, until the main guy came. It was a great job. I really miss working in the darkroom, but with digital photography, it will only happen again if I do it as a hobby.

Wed 9/16/2009 10:07 PM

Memories triggered
It's late, so I can't write much. My stomach felt bad in the morning. My family prayed for me and I noticed a couple of hours later it felt good. I also had taken same parasite medicine last night, so I guess the combination was good (prayer and medicine).

Greg worked all day doing construction. Today the boys worked with him. When he got off, we walked downtown to all the sights, sounds, and smells on main street. It was busy, with booths cooking Thai food, Chinese food, BBQ, hot dogs, caramel corn,... Booths that sold western wear, western purses, jewelry, Musicians with sound system. Musicians with only a guitar and a hat for donations. There was one musician that was singing Creedence Clearwater Revival music. It sounded original. It made me wonder if he was part of the band he was so good, but I knew he wasn't.

There was a booth with gospel tracts asking the 2 question test, "If you died do you know you would go to heaven?"

The second question was, "If yes, why?"

My 4th son wrote something on his blog the other day about how the sense of smell can trigger memories like no other sense. It worked quite well with me, remembering all the times I had gone to the Fair, carnival and the people I had been with. I also think music triggers memories as well.

Thu 9/17/2009 7:32 PM

I got carried away on Greg's haircut!
A "full" day again. In the morning I had a headache. It was because I only drank 1/4 cup of coffee yesterday, so I guess I'm addicted. After I got over it me and the girls canned peaches and nectarines. I should have bought 2 boxes of peaches and no nectarines. The nectarines started going bad faster and some didn't even ripen. The girls helped me peel the peelings off after I had put them in hot water. I haven't canned for 10 years, but it all came back to me. I used 1 Tablespoon or so of honey in each jar instead of making a sugar syrup. After it was all finished, we had 10 quart jars of peaches and nectarines. We aren't going to eat them until winter!

Gideon made whole wheat french bread today. I should have helped him a little more, as there were a couple of things he could have done to make it better. But, it's still quite good. Making bread takes practice.

In the afternoon, our family walked around on main street to see the sights. I took a lot of photos for fun with my camera phone. I can't find our other camera, but it's around somewhere.

The 3 older children are ushering again. I suggested to them to say "sir" and "ma'am" to show respect and also they may get more tips. I don't know if they'll take me up on the suggestion or not.

Tomorrow is my housecleaning day. I only have 2 houses, but I am quite tired in the evening, so end up doing the 2 office jobs on Saturday with the family. If I ever have to do them on Friday I can, but I usually don't want to. I will have another housecleaning job soon, for the doctor where I clean the offices. She and her husband don't have time to clean their house. I've cleaned for them once. They live out of town and their home is very cool. It's very lived-in, but has rock floors and a "greenhouse" room that is between another room. It will probably be once a week. Another good thing about that job is that I'll be able to take the girls with me and they can do their school work while I'm cleaning. The boys could come also if they wanted to.

The weather is about perfect right now. It's between 80-90 in the day and cools down at night. I am going to enjoy it while it lasts. The area in Mexico, where we were has perfect weather from November to April. After that it gets hot. I will miss it again this winter.

My food co-op order came in yesterday. I got pinto beans, rice, licorice tea, chamomile tea, Pau de Arco bark, Slippery elm, black walnut hull tincture, rice milk and pearl barley.

Before we went to the main street events, I cut Greg's hair. It was getting pretty long and he at least needed a trim. The haircut started out great. It would have been the best I'd ever done. But... I got OCD about it and tried to make it perfect. So, he got the shortest haircut he's had in years. I felt really bad. He wore his hat tonight. Susannah said that it would probably grow out before Judah's wedding. I hope so.

To end a fruitful day I got a call from my daughter in Mexico. She was sick yesterday, but today is much better. I am so thankful that I was able to have a heart to heart with her.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

"There's an animal on the stairs!"

I wrote this post on September 10th, so I'm a bit behind. I will try to get caught up soon!

Today was another busy day, but mostly I was doing things I wanted. I sorted all the books and stuff I brought back from Tucson/Mexico finally. We only have 1 small bookshelf in our bedroom, so I removed all the books that I won't want to read for awhile and replaced them with new and exciting material. There isn't any more room on the shelf. All the other books will have to go in boxes for now.

We live in this funny, old, crooked house. It has a lot of little rooms. Downstairs there is a room by the furnace room that we are using for storage. But in the furnace room is a small space I might make into an office. I would need to clean it up and put some good lighting in there. Maybe I can use it for a writing/art studio. It is very small, but I like small and it would be fun to have a space there. The only problem is that it will get really cold in the winter, unless we do some improvements.

The 3 older children at home are getting jobs ushering for the big "Round-up" that starts in a little over a week. It is the biggest deal in this town. It is one of the largest rodeos in the USA and Canada. Most of the fast food businesses and restaurants raise their prices for that week. If I had it together more, I would think of some little business to make extra money. I have thought about it, but decided that I just don't want to.

Many of the locals leave town or just stay at home. I haven't lived here since I was young, so I don't know if it's as busy as it was then. If so, then it will be crazy for awhile.

There's going to be a church meeting in the park with about 5 churches participating. There will be an "all you can eat" breakfast in a park one day. I figured that our family could buy a lot of food for the $49 it would cost all of us to go, so I think we'll stay home. Anyway I can make good biscuits and gravy if Greg wants some.

I don't have to get up early tomorrow, but I might still. Tomorrow will be an exceedingly busy day if I choose to clean the insurance office and bank in the evening. The good part is that I can do it on Saturday if I'm too tired.

The coolest thing that happened tonight was that when I was going out the downstairs back door, a little opossum was peering at me from under our picnic table. I took a picture with my phone camera. I was afraid to get too close for fear that it might attack me or something. It was probably a baby though. Later on, after it had gotten dark, Clementina was walking down the stairs and ran up saying, "There's an animal on the stairs!" By the time I went out there, it was gone again.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

We left for our trip to a Christian festival on Friday and just got back last night. We arrived at the park, Friday night and pitched our tent in the same location as last year. It was in the far corner of the park, near the river. During the 3 days we attended, there was music under the large tent and speakers in the evening. They served 2 meals and the rest we were on our own. There also were some missionary speakers on Saturday afternoon.

I woke Sunday morning feeling a little sick in my stomach. It lasted pretty much all day, then on Monday too. I think it was a bug I picked up from my sister a few days before. Thankfully it was not too bad. (most of the time)

One of the themes during the festival was to be connected to Jesus the way that He was connected to His father. Also, another theme I remember was to listen to what God says to me and then do it. One of the speakers was an ordinary guy, 68 years old. He had recently been to Africa and told about his friend who traveled with him to different villages. One of the stories was about how they were going to a village because his friend Pee Wee, (his nick name), said God had told him to go to a certain village. The older Canadian man started doubting because the car wasn't running well, it was hot... and everything seemed to be going wrong. The African, said to "Wayne", you wait and see, because I know God spoke to me about going there." Finally after they got there, they shared the gospel and everyone in the village believed. The village wanted them to come back in a few days, which they did.

Wayne also shared about another African man that was healed from some stomach ulcer that had hurt him for 3 years. Wayne videoed it, and the man kept rubbing his stomach and saying, "It doesn't hurt any more."

On Friday and Saturday night it rained very hard and the wind blew. I was so happy that our tent did not leak very much. It only leaked on the edges and a towel took care of that. Our children stayed with friends or under the big tent so they stayed dry too.

A lot of people did get wet though, but everyone seemed to be happy and deal with it in a good way.

Judah, (son #3) and his fiance' were there. Son # 4 was there also. I was able to talk to my "adopted" Mexican son's (old) girlfriend, and found out her side of the story. It sure makes a difference to hear both sides. I cannot give him any hope for their relationship. Now I need wisdom to share this with him in the right way.

My eldest daughter is gone now, :( and I am going to miss her a lot, but I know she is in a good place.

My 4th son bought a car, an old Datsun. It looks like a little sports car. He has his license now, but has to save money for the insurance and to fix a few things on it. When we stopped by the house he lives in, I picked all the ripe tomatoes as they were not being harvested. He said to pick them all. His garden is much better than ours. It is probably the soil.

Our family stayed at some friends' on Monday night. They made a really nice dinner for us. I picked green beans and we also had corn from their garden. Unfortunately by evening I wasn't feeling good again. I started getting a migraine and my stomach was upset again. By Tuesday morning I was OK. We

On our drive back to our desert(ed) town, we stopped in another town and the boys went to the skate park. I called a friend that I haven't seen for 5 years who lives there. We exchanged e-mails and want to get back in touch. In the next town we all bought shoes on sale at big 5. That was good, because where we live there is only Wal.mart and JC Penny's for shoes, not really a good choice. We can drive 1 hour away for shoes, but it was nice to get them on the way home.

It is hard for me to write about a lot of things when I miss a few days. Hopefully I will be able to write every day now.

I went grocery shopping today, and am going to make a meal plan. I am also doing inventory so I will remember what I have on hand. I just found out how to order from a food co-op, and will order on Monday. They are called Azure Standard and deliver in many places in the US now. They have health food and whole grains, herbs.... at good prices.

Well, I am back in the home routine. I went to bed by 9:30 and got up at 6:00 (or so). I want to try to shoot for 9:00 bedtime, even though it will probably be more like 10:00.

Greg just started a construction job working for a friend. That job is supposed to last 3 months.

Levi is making a bunk bed for his sisters'.

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Back to my usual routine again

It's been awhile since I've been around here. My mornings are now busy with cleaning the doctors' offices. I clean houses for about 4 hours a weeks. We have an insurance office we clean on Friday evenings. Now, we have a "bank job", cleaning - that is - on Fridays. It was so incredibly dirty the first time we cleaned it last Friday. It took me and L & G 10 hours in total hours! I'm hoping this week will be half of that.

I started a poetry section in my "blog-it". That is a subscription blog that I write on also. At first I wasn't sure I would keep doing it, but I've found it helps me to write everyday. It is a blog where you "get paid" by those on "blog-it" that read you. One month it paid my subscription out of 5. But, it's still worth it to me, as the many comments are encouraging and most people who subscribe are writers or "wanna-be" writers.

I can send a link to anyone interested in joining blog-it. I get $20 for a referral, if someone joins for 3 months. I would only recommend that someone try it, and if they don't like it they can cancel. Don't join for the $, but because you like to write and want others to read what you write. It also feels more private, as only subscribers can read the blogs.

Any way, my life has been pretty boring since I got back from my vacation. I did enjoy the family reunion at Redbridge park near Hillgard State Park. It was fun and I liked sleeping in the tent. I did get upset when the "4 families" of Hispanic decent set up their camp 2 feet from my tent. I don't know if they were being rude on purpose, or just ignorantly, but I was a little irate for awhile. I got over it when I realized that the tent could be moved. My 2 younger sons and J.A. very willingly moved my tent to a more secluded location by the river. After that I was glad that the "4 families" moved in on me! They were having a great time and I'm glad that I didn't ruin it for them.

Clemy just had her 10th birthday party. She had a slip-n-slide (homemade) and a cookie cake. Petra also made horchata. The only thing missing was the pinata. She had about 5 friends come and they had a blast!

That's about all for now. Maybe I'll post some poetry on here from blog-it later.

Sunday, August 02, 2009

Summer Heat

We did go to the coast and had a nice time. It was 60 degrees there! I am so tired of driving though. I got to visit good friends and walk on the beach.

Greg, Levi, Gideon and Petra stayed a week longer, as Greg had some work lined up.

It has been so hot here, but I guess it is almost everywhere right now. The girls and I went swimming one day with our friends. That was so refreshing.

Tomorrow looks like might be another swim day in the afternoon. A good time to get out of the house.

Not much else to say.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Work, Meeting new friends and weekend plans

Now I'm cleaning the offices in the morning. We can only clean when there's another office person there, which is a bummer. But, we need to adjust and working in the morning is better now. I talked to my friend and it doesn't matter if we are bonded, it won't change the agencies' rules. So, when you can't change something you have to accept it.

Today Petra and Levi came in to help. We got it all done in 1 hour. I found a blind in a new exam room that was so dusty I could hardly believe it. I cleaned it (as far as I could reach), but all the blinds need done when I get a ladder.

It is nice getting off at 8:30 and not having to go in the evening, so maybe I'll get used to the new routine.

Our family will be going to the coast this weekend. The doctors' offices are closed Thursday and Friday, and I talked to the other office we clean and the boss said we could come in on Thursday instead of Friday. Then I'll need to check the trash cans on Tuesday as well.

I am looking forward to doing something together with the family, but all the driving just doesn't sound too fun right now. I'm glad I'm not a truck driver.

Yesterday We went bowling. It was dollar night. We took our 4, the Hawkins' 3 and 1 other girl. We all had fun. First I played pool with Greg. I can shoot with my right or left hand, so that is nice, but I still lost. Susannah had started a bowling game and had to leave to go to gymnastics, so I took over her game. I got a strike the first ball, but after that I didn't do so well. My score was 91.

We met an interesting couple there, with 2 children. The lady was in a wheelchair. The man spoke English with an Italian accent. They were from Italy. He also spoke German. He and Greg visited a lot. After awhile I came over and visited. I didn't want to interrupt their family time, but they seemed happy to visit with us. Our little friend who came with us, Nikkola, speaks German, so he spoke to her in German some. She is shy and didn't say much. Her mom is my good friend and from Germany. She married a family friend, so now we are almost like family.

Greg is getting a "tree job" across the street. At first he was going to do it by himself, but then decided to get a hold of a man he's worked for who has a tree service company and so they will work together.

I think Greg might take all the kids rafting in the river today. I'm not sure I will go, but maybe. The river isn't very swift, but I'm not sure how clean it is.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Home Sweet Home

We're home! I was gone about a month. Seemed like forever and seemed like a very short time too. When we came home there were some improvements done to the yard and bathroom. Greg and the boys had cleaned the house and there were candles burning everywhere. Some of my plants died, but there was a beautiful fern on a table.

We all went to the skate park for about an hour. I sat by the river and the boys skated. The girls all went on a walk.

Greg has been contemplating getting an A/C unit or swamp cooler. I think we should just use the fans for now and wait. It doesn't stay hot here very long. If it does, or we can't handle it we can get something though.

We now have 3 extra teens in the home for a week. The ages of kids here now are: 9,12,13,14,15 and 16! What fun! Our 2 families get a long real well and the children too. The boys all like to skateboard and make home made videos.

Yesterday morning we woke up in the motel in Ogden, Utah. I slept in till 9:30, as I hadn't gotten to sleep till 1:30 or so. It was a little confusing, as my phone registered a different time than the alarm clock and a different time than my computer. I was able to catch up on my blog(s) and all the kids had fun swimming. At 12:30 the office called. (My computer said it was 10:30). I said to her, "Are we supposed to be out?" "Yes". "OK, we'll be out in 10 minutes." So, we got out fast so I wouldn't have to pay for another night.

When we all left, I had to try to find the apartment where Greg and I lived when we first got married. There was a parade on that street and a lot of craft booths. We parked and walked the whole length of 25th street. I saw a lot of old buildings, but wasn't sure where it had been. The whole street was being renovated, with coffee shops and other stores. When we lived there, I hate to admit it, but it was near the "red light district".

It was actually a nice apartment, furnished, but in a bad area.

After talking to a lady in a coffee shop, she told me that she thought one building had been torn down. "It was a Brothel", "Was the name of it, Ed's Variety Shop?" she said, "I think so."

Well, we lived directly across it, in the upstairs apartment. We thought maybe it was a "brothel", or a drug house. I went there in the day once, being curious, to see what they sold. Everything was dusty and looked like it had been there 20 years. I bought a fingernail clipper and got out of there. I drew a picture of it also and have it somewhere.

After buying good coffee, we were on our way. It only took us 6 hours to get to my sisters'. We had a good visit and talked about old times when we were kids. As kids, we did not get along. My mom said we were too much alike. Petra thinks we are a lot alike too. But, we are good friends now. We stayed overnight and visited more in the morning, then took off.

We stopped at another little town. They had a whole block with craft booths too. I wanted to see them, but I was out numbered, being the only one who did. We stopped at a convenience store, bought drinks and left.

Greg has been doing the office cleaning at 6:30 a.m. There has been a lot of construction being done at night, so it's necessary. Maybe we'll start cleaning together and get it done sooner.

Everyone is going to the park, so I have to go if I want to go with them.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Almost home and more about our trip

We drove 16 hours, but finally made it to Ogden at about 11:30 pm Arizona time. (but it's 1 hour later here) I'm staying on Arizona time, because it's the same as Oregon. They do not do daylight savings time in AZ.

The trip went well and we really only stopped for gas and a supper break, but I don't think I'll be eating at Wendy's anytime soon.

It was fun traveling with another family. I learned my "following a car in traffic skills" when our family took road trips through Tijiana, and some big cities traveling east. It's a lot easier if the person you are following doesn't change lanes at the last minute and exit. That happened once near LA, when Greg did that. At that time we had "walkie-talkies" to communicate with. I couldn't find mine, then we got out of range. We finally found each other, but it was scary at the time.

The scenery was beautiful. Desert scenes with flowers and many different kinds of plants and shrubs. Part of the way there were cacti. We didn't take too many pictures, because the day was all about getting there. I wish we'd have gotten more. Petra took some really pretty sunset pictures.

I'm going to try to get a hold of my blog-it friend in Idaho that I just met on the way here. Also, I need to contact my sister. If all goes well, we will stay at her house tonight, so we can arrive at our little house tomorrow early.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Leaving between 7-8 tomorrow for Ogden

(PS, I left comments from my blogit for you to read)

My headache never came back. I started to get stressed out though, packing. We got the car packed first, and then later I was able to talk with our friend to see what he could bring in his van when he comes to Oregon to pick up his kids. There will still be 2 or more boxes of books I am going to have him mail to our address though.

After packing, I ate supper. Then Petra, Susannah and I walked to our other friends and visited with him and his wife awhile. Then, we all went swimming in the pool. It's still pretty hot here at night, so the pool felt good. Now I'm going to finish a couple of things I need to do, then get to bed. The plan is to leave at 7:00, but it could be a little earlier or later. I think we will be on the road for 15 hours. We'll see how close my estimate was by tomorrow night.

I reserved 3 motel rooms for the other family and all of us. Greg and I used to live in Ogden, Utah, when we first got married, so when the guy on the phone said the motel was on Washington Blvd. I thought, "Oh my." It is practically downtown and not in the best area. But we'll be safe inside our motel and there will be another family there too. I hope it's not too loud. Maybe in the morning we can drive by our old apartment on 25th street, if I can find it.

A migraine and a dream

I woke up at 3:30 a.m. I was dreaming I had a headache. I wished it had been a headache. I took 2 IBU and tried to sleep with a washcloth on the left side of my head. 1/2 hour later it wasn't any better, so I walked up to the house where Petra was asleep and got some excedrin from her. After another 1/2 hour it finally went away and I fell asleep.

I was dreaming a very involved mystery dream. In it I was looking for a key to a room. Then there was a special key that was on the side of the doorknob that did something else, like opened a secret room or something else mysterious. I found the key hidden in a hole in the wall. There was a lamp and a hat in front of it. I had the key, but the mysterious strange lady came was coming back, so I was looking for another generic key to replace it so she wouldn't notice it until we were done with it.

Another part of the dream was there was a spider building a web across the little creek, but on my way to put the key back my hat touched it and I couldn't believe how strong the web was. I pulled my hat out and ran to put the hat in front of the hole in the wall again.

Just then, the lady came walking around the corner. But, then I started dreaming about headaches again and woke up. I took 1 excedrin and now I am feeling better.

I think it's a combination of not drinking enough water, drinking tea and coffee (which dehydrates) and a couple other things (being tired...)

I have a lot to do, unless I get worse. Know the pressure will be on as we are caravanning. I'm sure I'll be ok and I have a lot of help.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

A Caravan to Idaho

I ended up not getting as much done as I wanted to. I guess I'm still a little tired from the long drive from San Antonio on Monday.

I did get to Trader Joes. I bought some boxes at Home Depot so I can mail my books if our friends can't bring them with them when they come get their kids in a couple of weeks.

Petra and I ended up eating fast food Chinese food at Bashas' instead of getting a Starbucks. She was hungry and I missed the street for Starbucks. We bought a 3 entry plate and split it. Really good food.

Tonight some other friends that we haven't seen for over a year came over to visit. So our 3 families had fun visiting. The kids went swimming. The great news is this family came to Arizona about the same time we did and we are going to caravan together and leave Friday morning. I hope I can get all my stuff done tomorrow and still get to sleep by 10. Petra has a migraine, so I won't be waking her up to walk. I think I will sleep in and then get everything done as fast as possible. I really don't have that much to do, just sort my "stuff", and do laundry and then clean the trailer. We also should pack the car before dark to see how it all will fit.

I still want to visit my new blogit friend who lives in Boise. Our friends who are caravanning with us live in Northern Idaho. It should be fun traveling together. They have a 9 year old boy and 11 year old girl and a little dog. We will have 2 adults, a 10 year old girl, two 13 year old girls, a 14 year old boy and a 16 year old boy. Should be interesting and lively.

Plans for today..

Today is going to be one of those busy days. I got up early and then woke Petra up so we could go on a walk. When we lived here a couple of summers ago, we used to walk every morning. It was a special time to spend with her. It is cloudy today, so the sun wasn't beating down on us, yet it's hot and a little humid still. We stopped to visit a family friend who lives on the same road on our way back for about an hour.

After my cold shower, Petra is coming with me to do some errands. I need to go to Trader Joes' to get some dark chocolate for Greg (and me too). He really likes chocolate and they have really good chocolate. Also some good coffee.

Then I have to get some boxes for the books I will mail, or our friends will bring to Oregon. Mostly my favorite books that were in Mexico and some I had left in Tucson.

We will probably go to Starbucks if Petra wants to. The 2 younger girls stayed overnight at some friends of ours. They had been planning this for months. Yesterday I took them to the swimming pool and then I met them all at a pizza place. I visited with the mom where they stayed overnight. She has several children, and there were going to be at least two extra, our 2. I think 11 altogether. I hope they had fun. They probably stayed up till after midnight.

I'd better go now. I am tired, and also have to finish sorting our stuff in the horse trailer, and take some more clothes to the thrift store that we have. I hope it doesn't take too long.

More photos when we were in Mexico:

Here's some photos from our road trips:

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Road trip from San Antonio to Tucson

Tue 7/14/2009 1:09 PM

I am safely in Tucson in the "Tinker Camp". We arrived last night at 9:30 p.m. Arizona time. I went to bed at 11:00 after unloading part of the car and visiting .... I was exhausted. I had originally wanted to get a motel, but we got an early start so it was not necessary. Most of the trip was great. We left San Antonio at 8:00 a.m. Petra drove part of the way. Driving is usually relaxing for me and I would rather drive than ride.

We stopped in El Paso, Texas for a nice restaurant lunch. It was over 100 degrees there. The humidity went down after leaving San Antonio, so our air-conditioning worked better.

I understand now, how "Road Rage" happens on a freeway. I am usually a patient driver, not letting what others' do upset me (except when they are shaking their fist at me because I did something stupid, then I cry). But on this trip there was a car from New Mexico driving in the passing lane, a little slower than I wanted to go. They would not get out of the passing lane. I hate it when people pass me on the right, so I tried to give them a hint and follow them, but not tailgate. No matter what I did, they would not get out of the left lane. Then I decided to pass on the right, but found I couldn't because there was a car going slower in that lane. This went on for over 50 miles.

I was getting more and more agitated inside. Finally, they got over and I passed them. Then the speed limit went from 75 to 65, so I slowed to 68 and they passed me. I was so glad when they finally got in the right lane and took an exit. It turned out to be a girl, blonde, with pink streaks talking on her cell phone.

After dark, I tried to pass a car, then noticed someone right on my tail. So, I put my blinker on to get out of their way and they passed me on the right, not waiting for me to get over. Then, I was passing a motorcycle and a car was coming up fast behind me and was going to try to get in front of me around the motorcycle. I got over and let them by. It was a New Mexico plate and wondered if it was that same car that did not let me pass them earlier in the day. I didn't find out because by then I was driving much slower because I was tired.

I think some people get their drivers licences out of a cracker-jack box.

Then I got to see a "sky show" for over an hour. A sky show is when God paints the most incredible sky and cloud scene before your eyes. The colors were incredible. I tried to take some photos while I was driving, but they didn't turn out very well. Our friend in Tucson is a painter and paints incredible clouds and sky scenes. His link will be posted at the end. I Wish he could have seen the clouds I saw in New Mexico.

If you like impressionism art, please check out this link. You will not be disappointed.

Six Flags

Sat 7/11/2009 9:50 AM

I'm at Starbucks, using their wireless. My son's internet is slow.

Six Flags was great. We got there about 10 and left at about 9:30. I went on a roller coaster first, because I knew I would change my mind if I just didn't do it. It was scary and I screamed all the way, but I'm still alive. My daughter-in-law thought I would really like the second roller coaster. I was in line, but when I saw that it went upside down, I changed my mind and didn't go on it. My daughter told me later it was the scariest one and Clemy said it felt like she was going off a cliff. I'm glad I didn't go.

Most of the other ones I went on were water slides, or raft rides, almost like a roller coaster. My favorite was the Lazy River ride, about 3 feet deep with water that moved and you just sit in an inner tube and go around in the "river" and under some small waterfalls. But, that's probably where I got my sunburn. We all put sunscreen on more than once, but most of us got some kind of sunburn. Mine isn't too bad. I don't want to know how bad it would have been if I hadn't had any sunscreen on.

The last thing was a laser show on the side of a cliff and fireworks. I found out why Texans are so proud of Texas. The laser show was all about Texas history and my daughter-in-law said that in school they get a lot of Texas history and how great Texas is. The first time I was in Texas I saw the Texas pride. I can understand it better now. It's hard to be proud of Oregon when they are one of the only states that have passed assisted suicide laws and others... Oregon is a beautiful state, but I don't agree with a lot of things the government does. They seem to have a law for everything and it's getting hard to breath there... getting smothered by all the laws.

I wished Greg was here for the water rides. He would have liked them.

Today is a rest day and tomorrow. We plan on leaving Texas Monday early. I want to go half way and rest more, but everyone is pushing me to drive the whole way. I do have my daughter to help drive, but I can't sleep in the car well. I am not sure what I'm going to do yet. It's supposed to be a 12 hour drive, but it took us 15 hours. We did stop a few times, but I need to.

Cheerios, Oil change, tires and watching Indian movies!

Wed 7/8/2009 9:58 AM

This morning I talked with my husband for quite awhile. He was so happy to tell about our grandson, who is living with his parents in Asia. The story goes something like this: My son is reading a book to his little 1 year old. In the book are cheerios. So he starts pretending to eats the cheerios, and so does his baby. After awhile he goes into the kitchen and gets real cheerios and "makes them appear" so they start eating real cheerios. The baby believes they came out of the book.

It is very funny, but hope he lets his son know it was just a game. Little children believe easily, even when things aren't true. They also trust easily.

In the morning, my daughter-in-law took me to a place to get my oil changed in the Previa. After that was done, we dropped the mini-van off at the tire store. When I had my flat in Mexico, I should have bought 2 new tires, but I didn't know, so now I'm buying one. The ruined window gaskets, bad shocks and transmission flush will all have to wait.

My daughter-in-law checked out another Indian DVD from the library. If you've seen slum dog millionaire, and liked it, then you might want to watch some others. The other 3 I've seen had romance and Indian dancing, but were clean.

I'm still telling myself I WILL go on the roller coaster. I can take dramamine. I WILL scream the whole way!

Monday, July 06, 2009

My Phone has revived...

Monday, July 6, 2009

I am at Starbucks using their fast internet. I had some business to do, now I am chatting with a friend on Gmail and trying to write here too. She types FAST. Amazing Fact: My Sony cell phone started working a little yesterday. Last night the screen would come on and off. Today it is working, but a wire might be loose, so I am not trusting it. If it keeps working that will save me about $50 to replace it with a decent used phone.

I am trying to decide if I want to go to Six Flags amusement park. I think Petra thinks it will be "too much" for me, and she is right, but I might want the adventure and I'll take dramamine so I can go on a roller coaster!

Better go. Have a nice day.

A great day

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Sunday's events

Another full day. We all went to church in the morning. Afterwards, came back to my son's home and I took a nap. Later we had a wonderful meal of Barbecued chicken and beef, salsa and tortillas.Zyanyas' mom, dad and grandmother came. Her grandmother doesn't speak English, so I had some more Spanish practice again. We were able to communicate OK.

After the other relatives left, we watched a movie from Indian Films called "Jab we met". It was a little corny in parts, but turned out to be a really good film.

Tomorrow the girls are going shopping. I may go to the library and do my email. The internet here is really bad, and I can't even get a signal with my older laptop. It doesn't work very good at all, so I can't count on it.

All the other things we might do, I'll tell about after we did them.

I am very thankful to be here and see my older son and his wife. She takes very good care of him!

July 4th

Saturday, July 4, 2009

End of a great day

We went to see some fireworks over a small lake in San Antonio. Lots of people... The fireworks were really good. Now we're back "home" and resting. I was able to get a short nap, which left me feeling groggy for a long time. Now I feel awake and it's about bed time. A great day and looking forward to more great days this next week.

We're in Texas!

I am at my son, David's and daughter-in-law's. We arrived at midnight last night (Friday night) (Texas time). The drive was pretty boring, and took 15 hours actual driving time. I ended up driving the whole way because the 2 other drivers stayed up till midnight the night before and by the time I would have needed them to drive they were tired. But I was fine and we are here!
Petra, the younger girls and Zee are going grocery shopping. I tried to get internet on my computer, as they have a low signal, but it wouldn't work, so I ended up using their laptop. I tried to transfer what I wrote on my USB card, but it wouldn't work. Oh well.

This week I plan on resting a lot and enjoying my time here. The girls want to go to Six Flags, an amusement Park. "Bob" has a bad sunburn on his feet due to his fishing adventure last weekend. By the time we go, he'll be better.

David and Zyanya bought a fixer-upper here in San Antonio. David is a skilled carpenter and handy man, so their house is looking really nice. Today he and "Bob" are working at his other job, building a deck for someone.

Thursday, July 02, 2009

Amazing photograph

This is an amazing sky scene we saw as we were driving to Tucson. Taken by:
(c) 2009 Jenna Stoeppler

Back in the USA

Here are some photos of the trip:
1st: Sunset in the village
2nd: Sunset
3rd: Entry road to the village
4th: Driving through the City
5th: Driving through a village

I thought the trip up to Tucson would be uneventful. It started out fine. We left the village at 9:00, with the windows locked and the house looking as if we were only leaving for a weekend. We got gas in Toltecas, 5 miles away and bought snacks at the store.

The night before, our neighbor asked Petra if we could take her son and daughter to Santa Ana, where they would get a bus to Corboca to visit their sister. I knew we would be loaded down, as there were already 6 of us,(Petra, me, Clemy, Susi, and 2 girls that had been helping out at the deaf school) our luggage and I was bringing several boxes and backpacks stuff from our house. I told Petra I hoped we had room and I really wanted to bring them.

After packing the car, we did have room, and it didn't seem that crowded. I always thought I was tough, because we never had air-conditioning on our trips back and forth from Mexico to USA, but I am so glad we had it. I never realized the stress the hot weather, and driving in a car was before. It was relaxing driving for me.

When we were getting close to Hermosillo, the road was really rough, but the car seemed to change sounds. At first I thought I had a flat, but after awhile realized that wasn't the problem. I was determined not to stop until we reached a place I could check the van out. I did not want to be stranded on the side of the road in the heat with cars and trucks whizzing by.

We were trying to find a "Pollo Feliz" to no avail. We didn't want to eat at Kentucky Fried Chicken, but decided to turn around and head there. After pulling into the packing lot, I got out and checked the car. The tread on the left front tire was separating, and that was why the van was vibrating so much.

After eating at KFC, we took the van to the tire shop right across the street, but they didn't have our size of tire. But, he told us where Michellen tires was, right around the corner. We went there, I bought a tire and it was put on the van and in 30 minutes we were on our way.

Nearing sunset their was an amazing cloud formation that Jenna was able to photograph. I am going to post it on my blogspot and put a link here.

We made it to Tucson around 11 pm or later. Everyone but me was hungry, so we found a Taco Bell. My stomach had been hurting me from something I ate in the morning, so I got a milkshake from McDonalds' later, which didn't help at all.

I slept soundly and woke up without a stomach ache. We have today to rest, then tomorrow we are heading to San Antonio Texas.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

At the internet cafe' in Mexico again

I got away for a bit to try to write a little. My last entry was too long, but I didn't know how else to write about it all.
Yesterday after I left the intenet cafe', I went to pick up the girls from our friends' house. We ended up eating "caldo de pollo", or chicken soup. Very good. I miss Mexican food and how they cook it a lot.
When we left I did about #5 stupid thing. I locked my only key in the car. The car has a stupid dinger that drives me nuts, so I had thrown the keys on the dash, then forgot about them when I locked the car. I had something in my pocket that felt like a key, so I guess I had it. I could not believe I had done something so stupid.
Our friend, Uriel and I tried for about an hour to break into the Toyota Previa. That is one tough car to break into. All the gaskets around the windows were getting chewed up and I hoped that would be all the damage done. I really believed, eventually we could get in, but it was looking dismal.
Finally I walked to the store with Pati, and talked to the store owner to use the phone to call a locksmith. A young guy, around 20 or so was working in the back with the owner, Roberto, and he said he could get into the car.
So, after another 1 1/2 hours, using wire heavier than a coat hanger, he and Uriel got the lock button to push and open. I was so happy and relieved! I will have to buy new gaskets for both front windows, as they are destroyed. I'm glad he didn't take the small wing window (which doesn't open) out, which was next on the list.
After I got home, Petra and I took the rest of our belongings out of the rental house down the street, and went through it all, throwing away stuff and I decided to give most away. It was material and some clothes and yarn mostly.
That was yesterday. Today I have been resting and not motivated to do much. I am reading a wonderful book, but don't have it with me, so can't even remember the author. It is about writing and art. I was going to tell about it, but I think I will save it for when I can quote one paragraph that is changing my thinking about God. How we are not dull to him and what we say and write he is interested in. I need that now because I know that what I write feels boring to me. I hope that I can encourage you all later, when God has changed me more.

Monday, June 29, 2009

I'm writing from Mexico

Wednesday 6-24-09

I am writing all of this on Saturday evening from our house in Mexico. I haven't been able to get to an internet cafe' yet, but by the time I have this posted you will know I found one. I think I need to give an overview of how the trip went first though, before I tell about today. It is long, but there is no other way to tell about everything.

We left around 9 am from Tucson, Arizona. I would have left earlier, but slept until I woke up. I wanted to make sure I got enough rest before we left. Everything went smoothly most of the way. I drove about 70-80 mph a lot of the way. We went through several toll booths. We used to take the Indian roads around them, but it takes at least 2 more hours and the side roads aren't very good.

By the time we were in Navojoa, 1 hour from our house, everything seemed to go wrong. I had some boxes to deliver to a mutual friend from our friends in Tucson. I drove to their house, but they weren't home. I tried to call, but couldn't on my phone. We waited around for about 15 minutes then left for the store before going to the village. I bought a phone card there, and tried to call our friend again. I got a hold of her and she said she would meet me at the store.
I shopped until Becky got there. After she came, I gave her a laptop from her daughter and some DVD players another mutual friend. We visited for about 15 minutes, then I left.

I was excited about getting to our house, as I hadn't been there in over a year. But, unfortunately, I could not find the hidden key anywhere. Greg had sent me a text message and told me there were keys to the house in the ashtray. But, unfortunately, the top dead bolt would not work. It always had a problem sticking, and there was nothing I could do to get it to budge.

I finally decided to drive another hour to Los Mochis, where my daughter was. But, unfortunately, by the time we got there it was 1:30 a.m. And I didn't want to call. I was so tired by then that I wasn't thinking straight. I might have even tried to call, but I can't remember now. I am embarrassed to say it, but I ended up driving around for 2 hours, looking for a nice motel or trying to remember how to get to the deaf school.

Anyone who knows me well, knows I have very little sense of direction. I really wish I'd had a map of Los Mochis. I ended up going in circles .I had asked a person at the OXXO (store like a 7-11) if there was an inexpensive nice motel nearby. He directed me to two, right next to each other. I found them, but felt uncomfortable, not knowing what kind of motel it was, so I drove around looking for a better one. I never did find one. Eventually, I asked a taxi driver, and he led me to a “good hotel” By then I would have taken any kind of hotel. I gave him a dollar bill, but he wanted more, so I gave him a 20 peso bill and took my dollar bill back. He hinted for more, but I didn't give him any.

It was old, but in it's time was a noble place with a courtyard. They also had a locked area to park my car. The hotel manager wasn't too happy I'd woke him up at 3:30 a.m. The hotel had a ceiling fan and a wall fan, but no air conditioning. It wasn't too hot, so that was fine. We had to get a room with 3 beds, for more money, as the manager said the others were all full. 2 of the beds were OK, but one was not very good – a little lumpy and uneven. I told Clemy she could sleep in mine, but she didn't. (The next day she told me she could feel the springs). I took a cold shower to wash the sweat off and went to bed. It was 4:45 a.m. By then.

Thursday 6-25-09

I woke up about 10:00 a.m. The girls turned on the TV and were watching a movie. It took me awhile to figure out that it was the “Flinstones” only with real people instead of in cartoons. It was also in Spanish.

I took another shower, as it was getting warm in the room and then we left.

I drove around about ½ hour before we found the deaf school. I had tried to call earlier, but no one answered.

I prayed last nigh and today for God to guide and protect us. I think one reason I drove around so much was I didn't know if I was in a good or bad area of town and I felt uncomfortable and wanted to find a safe place. At least there was hardly any traffic out. Mostly taxis and police cars. I'm surprised I didn't get stopped.

I finally recognized a street name and some landmarks. Petra was very glad to see us! We ate lunch at the deaf school. After that Petra and I did some errands, picking up kids, delivering more gifts to a relative of our friends in Tucson.

The weather was very humid, but not as hot as I was expecting. The air felt heavy and moist.

Even though my Spanish isn't very good, my mind was able to switch gears and communicate with people again. If I don't think about it too much, then I can talk in Spanish.

Petra and I stopped in a little outdoor cafe'. They served K-freeze and cappuccino's. Petra and I had a nice time visiting and catching up a little. We went to Wal-mart to buy cat food. It is cheaper at Sam's Club, but I don't have a membership card anymore. I don't want to get rid of our 2 cats. They get some cat food, and when it runs out they eat mice, lizards, snakes and bugs. They also get a few scraps from the neighbors.

Around 6 p.m. The 2 girls and I drove back to the village with Petra's keys. We made it there before dark. First we drove to our friend, Carmen's house, who runs 1 of the 2 stores there. She also takes care of our water and power bills when we are gone. Then we went to our house and were able to get in. I was surprised that it was as clean as it was. Petra has been going there every 2 or 3 weeks and has kept it fairly clean. Since she started leaving a window open, so the cats can go in, there have been less mice. The cats were skinny and very happy to see us (or the cat food).

I swept the bedrooms, living room and kitchen, then I took a cold “bucket” shower and went to bed. We have no running water in the house because the hurricane in September broke some pipes. I bucket shower works fine in the summer if you don't have to heat up water. I'm glad that I have trained myself to take cold showers.

I really am enjoying being in our house. I didn't realize how much I missed it. I hope we can come back soon to live.

Friday 6-26-09

I didn't get up till noon. I slept 3 hours for yesterday and 9 hours for today.

It is very humid here and a little hot. It gets worse in July and August.

Susannah has been washing clothes all day. It looked as if it might rain, but didn't.

Today I drank 2 glasses of carrot juice, ice tea, and water. I also put some beet and an apple in the carrot juice.

I spent most of the day cleaning my bedroom and looking through stuff. I found a lot of very dead mice and cockroaches. I have about 10 small bags of clothes from our closet to give away. I am finding some books I want to bring to Tucson, then I will mail them to our house in Oregon from there. I don't know when we will come back, so I want to take care of things.

I wanted to go to the internet cafe', but didn't have time. I need to get to sleep now. It's about 10 p.m.m

I found the lost keys. They were in the area they were supposed to be, but I just hadn't looked good enough.

I had a nice cool bucket shower and now I am going to bed.

Saturday 6-27-09

I got up at 8:00 I think. I feel SO tired. I did some laundry this morning and Susannah helped me hand it on the line. It is so humid here. It's hot, but not extremely so – but the humidity knocks you out. I had a glass of carrot juice with beet and apple again for breakfast. I tried out the little camp stove that Judah made, but it didn't work so well. It worked perfect when he tried it out 2 times. It took 3 times for the water to get hot enough for coffee. I finally made some, then made some tea to make iced tea later.

Greg called. He is going to a men's retreat and the 2 boys are going with him. They have colds.

I rested most of the day until Petra came with 2 girls who have been helping at the deaf school. They got a ride from some missionaries who live only 30 miles from us. They have been there 10 years and we have never met them. I guess Greg has been in contact with “Brian”, but he never mentioned them to me. They were very nice and visited for about ½ an hour before they left.

Petra went to Dyanas' kindergarten“graduation”. Dyana is Carmen's little girl, the store owner here.

While Petra and everyone else was gone, I drove to the village 5 miles away that has an internet cafe', but it was closed. I always get so lost and turned around in those 2 villages that are side by side. I don't think I should ever drive anywhere by myself at night anymore if I can help it!

2 more things happened that are not too good. I dropped my phone really hard, and now the screen doesn't work. I think maybe it works, if I can get the screen fixed. I'm glad I brought the go-phone with me too. I really don't need it now, except I can text Greg on it. The second thing is that the dead bolt in our front door won't work, so I can't lock it. We will have to try to fix it, because we have to lock the house when we leave. I think eventually we need to replace all the locks that are not working right.

It is late and I need to get to sleep. Tomorrow is Sunday. I don't know if Petra and the other girls will be going to church or not. I cannot go to a Mexican church unless I wear earplugs. So, I may stay home and rest. If I go I will be taking my earplugs.

Sunday 6-28-09

I rested most of the day and read a little. I had coffee, using the little stove made from a pop can that Judah made for me. It uses grain alcohol. It didn't work very good, but I finally got the water hot enough. I never did buy propane, as we aren't going to be here very long.

In the evening I took Christy and Jenna to church. Petra, I and Clemy went back home. Petra, Clemy and Susannah did dishes, cleaned and finished supper (lentil soup in the crock pot). After the 2 girls got back from church, we had supper with a couple of neighbors. It was SO good! I haven't been eating very much real food, so it tasted especially good.

The funniest thing that happened was when Carmen (the store owner) was explaining about how she was getting "injections" for her dog - so it wouldn't get pregnant. The shots are meant for the local ladies. "Lety" is in charge of the health care in the village and gave them to Carmen. We all laughed for about 5 minutes!

It was so fun to be with our friends again!

Tomorrow we are sleeping in and then Petra and I have to empty out the house we have rented for visitors. Some other people want to rent it. I am not looking forward to it, but it has to be done.

There are a lot of other things I have to get taken care of before we go back. We plan on leaving Mexico Wednesday morning early.

Monday 6-29-09

I woke up at 8:30. It rained quite a bit last night with lightning and thunder. I hope it doesn't rain again till after we get the stuff out of the rental.

I drove to Los Toltecas with Jenna, Susannah and Clemy. We went to my friend Pati's house and visited awhile. She talks pretty fast, but I can usually understand most of what she says. We had to "catch up" on the last year. She told me all the people that have died since we left and how everyone around is doing.

I left the 2 girls with Pati and Jenna and I are at the internet cafe' (finally). It works pretty good, but I finally plugged my laptop in, because I am used to it.

I know this is long. I thought about putting it all in different entries, but if I do that, it messes up the order, and I wanted it to be in order. I guess only the ones who are really interested and have time will read it. If you are busy, please come back and read it as you can.

I might be able to come back tomorrow morning, but only if I get up early. God bless you all and I hope to have time to read some entries before I leave here.


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