Thursday, June 23, 2011

For Sale

The other day I had Melissa empty her bookcase so I could tighten the screws. It has a lean...which is great if you are in Pisa...not so good if you are a bookcase.  After the lean was taken care of, I had Melissa go through her books before she put them back on the shelf. As we separated the books that she wanted to get rid, I told her that we would get give them away or take them to Goodwill. She asked if instead if we could sell them on eBay.


They boys got into the act as well and cleaned out the big bookshelf upstairs.  Then Melissa did a lot of research on eBay to see what was selling and for how much. She really did a good job. Ben took pictures and helped separate the books.  Not real sure what William did....other than irritate his siblings....

As all the day went on, one thing was clear: I don't see my three children ever running a business together.

Most of the books are now listed on ebay - hopefully, they will earn some I think they already have some of it spent.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Rain, Rain - Please come again!

We actually got some rain today. So needed!  But don't think we got nearly enough.  We got more thunder & lightening than rain. But every little bit helps.

I was able to clean out the guest room closet.  So many things have been just thrown in there - too many - so many that we couldn't really walk in anymore and get to want we wanted.  But no more.  I ended up talking five paper grocery bags to the Goodwill - and another one to the trash can. It's all oranganized now. LOVE IT!

Melissa and I also got some shopping in.  I needed some comfy shoes I could wear when I work this fall (the plan is to still sub)- and a new outfit for an upcoming baby shower for my niece.

 Of course, I found a few other things other than a dress for the shower....

Melissa did picked out an outfit as well for the shower, but none of us (her, me, Drew) are totally sold on it.  We'll try the mall later this week.

Still hearing some thunder.....but not seeing any more rain...maybe soon....

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Day in the Life of....

Our day started with Drew and I taking William to the school for soccer conditioning/practice.  At six. a.m. As in way too early for a summer day.

But all was not lost.  Drew and I usually walk/run in the mornings, so just walked and ran at the high school track.  We did our normal two miles. William  - and all the other boys - on the other hand kept working.  For a total of 95 minutes. 

Felt so bad for William! I know he was not thinking the first day of conditioning would be that long.  I have a feeling he will be slow moving getting out of bed in the morning.

Our day ended with me taking Melissa and her friend to cross country conditioning/practice.  At least her's  was at seven p.m. And only lasted twenty minutes.  So much better. But the coach had them run barefooted. Not sure what it up with that.

Welcome to high school and middle sports. Hang on tight - it's gonna be a rough ride at times!

Saturday, June 18, 2011

The Lasts Times

Karen Kingsbury wrote in one of her books about the lasts time. She even wrote about a whole book about it, Let Me Hold  You Longer.  In it she talks of how we celebrate all the firsts of our children - the first time they roll over, the first time they crawl and walk....the first tooth in and the first tooth lost.  But many times we over looks the lasts times....the last time the toddle crawls to the last tooth falling out.  One day we turn around realize we can't remember the last time he crawled or the last time the tooth fairy was  needed.

I feel that way with VBS. Three summers ago I never dreamed that would be the last time all three kids would be in VBS...but it was. The next summer the chapel in Guam held VBS during July - our travel month. The last summer we moved. VBS schedules just didn't work out. Then this year, Benjamin breaks out with chicken pox and ends up staying home all week.

Not that I really minded  missing VBS. As I said the other day, I got a lot done!  Big projects done!

But still.  A part of me is sad.  That part of my children's childhood is over.  Bittersweet.  They can't grow up without leaving some of the sweet parts of childhood behind. Melissa is already talking about how she wants to be a helper next year.

Hopefully, chicken pox and all other contagious viruses will stay far away.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011


Today marked the third day of VBS - and the third day that we missed. Well, at least the boys and I.  Melissa has gone...and liked it "just okay".  Not sure if it's because it's different that what we had in Guam or if she's just out growing it.  Actually, because of our traveling we missed it the last two summers, so I  was looking forward to all of us attending.

Ben's not so broken up over missing it. He confessed to me that he didn't like VBS. Why? I asked.  "Because, they only teach what I already know."

Should have known that I would get that type of answer out of Benjamin.

But he and William have enjoyed hanging out at the house.  Especially, since they got the Wii exercise board back to working order.

And me? I feel guilty for not going to VBS. I said I would teach, so I feel that I should. But I'm also love being at home.  I have gotten one big project done and about a third of the way done on another one. It's been so nice just dropping Melissa off then going home to accomplish a few things.

Not sure if Mr. Poxy will still be itchy tomorrow or not....and not sure if I want him to be or not! I would love to keep working on my project...get this one done and start on another one....

Monday, June 13, 2011

Monday Night

All is well here in Pox Land.  Ben's spots are almost dried up. I'll give him another look over tonight and again in the morning, but I'm really hoping all is well.

Then there's Melissa. I'm really hoping the spots on her leg are from bugs. 

We had a good weekend - Saturday we had just about nothing going on. It was lovely. Just lovely. At one point Melissa asked if I would take her and a friend swimming at the base.  No. I plan to do nothing the rest of the afternoon.

She was not so happy.  Whatever.   I enjoyed my lazy afternoon.  Drew and I did go out to eat - Mexican! - and made a run through the sporting goods store to buy me some new walking/running shoes.

Yes, Drew  is still getting me to run some.  .7 of a mile.  Not far, I know, but a good start for this walker.

 I did get a few books read this weekend - another one by Kristen Hannah - Night Road.  Once again, she writes a wonderful and compelling story.  I also, re-read The Handmaid's Tale.  And a few other books in the last week or so....just some light Christian fiction.

This week starts Melissa's conditioning with the Cross Country Team.  Several evenings a week. And we found out William has conditioning for soccer starting next week. His are in the mornings. Early, early.

The fun just never ends around here.....But we have booked a few trips for next month - yeah! Love to travel!

Friday, June 10, 2011


A friend on facebook just called my son an overachiever.  Sadly, I have to agree. You see, we think - okay, pretty darn sure! - that our youngest has the chicken pox.

Yes,  he did have the vaccine.

Yes. he actually broken out with a small case of the chicken pox when he was four.

And again tonight.

He came to us asking how to get rid of some bug bites. Drew took a look at them. Then asked me to look at them.

I told Ben to strip - yep. Bumps all over - about fifty.

Poor little guy.

But seriously!

Melissa, also, had the chicken pox when Ben was four. Then, she broke out again while we were in Guam. I blamed it on the weird viruses that floated around Guam and the rest of the Pac-Rim.

But now, Ben is breaking out.  Should be an interesting weekend.

Monday, June 6, 2011


Thursday I was working on a project on the computer when I heard a choking noise. I turned around and saw William with a panic look in his eyes. I asked if he was choking - he nodded yes.

I jumped up, ran to him, and did the Heimlich. Then I beat on his back. Then did the Heimlich again. Then beat on his back again. He finally said, "I'm good. I'm good."

Oh, so sweet words. Much better than that horrible noise of him trying to catch a breathe.

When I asked him what happened, he said the strawberry got swallowed just about whole.

Yeah....not a good way to eat!

And yeah. I think it took a few years off my life.

Then on Friday I was laying on the couch watching TV when I heard a choking sound from upstairs.  I yelled, "William!!!"

He yelled," I'm okay."

"What happened??"

"A piece of candy."

"What are you doing??  Son, would you quit trying to choke to death??!!!"

As Drew said, it's always something.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Books and Movies

Years ago when the book series Harry Potter was popular, I didn't let my kids read it.  There were many reasons.  Rebellion. Protection. Fear.

Rebellion - mine  -  I seem to hate having people tell me how I "have" to read or watch something. I like to make the decision on my own - not to be "forced".  (Which is why I have never seen Titanic!)

Protection - of the kids. Because of the fear - that would be William's.  William has always hated books or movies with a lot of suspense. Especially, if music is added. 

We once were watching a documentary on Abe Lincoln. One scene was a shadow of a man welding a knife. William had nightmares for several nights.   So. We have learned to avoid things that cause nightmares.

And I thought Harry Potter would.

So. We didn't read the books or see the movies.  There were times Melissa or Ben said something about wanting to see the movies.  But they seemed to accept our "no" without too much pf a problem.

There was, also, the whole controversy several popular Christians started with the witchcraft used in the series.  It made me ....unsettled.  I didn't want the kid to think the witchcraft was real - didn't want them to get all caught up in it.  Also, I was uneasy with the way many kids were so obsessed with the stories and yes, the witchcraft.  I much prefer that kids obsess with love. Not so much with the evil.

But that was when the kids were younger. Now they are older.  They understand the difference between real and pretend more than ever. And while William still doesn't like suspense, he handles it better.

A few months ago, William came home from the library with the first Harry Potter book on tape.   I asked him if he would be okay with all the suspense and possible scary things - and he was. Okay, then.  No problem.

So, he listened to the first book on tape with Ben (I think Melissa listened, too), then William read the rest of the series in less than a month.

Today Ben found the first movie on DVD.  All three watched it last night. And so far - no nightmares. That's always a good thing.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Oprah, Again

A few months ago I had asked what I thought was an innocent question on facebook: "What new shows on Oprah's network are you looking forward to seeing?"  Oh, my.  I was flood with all opinions of my friends - mostly against Oprah.  I said my view here.

I do think there is a sentiment in some Christian circles that Oprah is not a Christian. They base this opinion on several comments Oprah has made over the years.   But I think they need to re-think those opinions.

I was totally impressed with her "love letter" she gave as her last show.  You can read it at   It was truly beautiful.   In this love letter, she gave all praise to God - and named Jesus - not just any god, but GOD.

Are all of her beliefs - her theology -  agree with  mine? No. And I think that's okay. God has made us all different - that's plainly seen in nature as well as every type of church! But I do think we need to quit focusing on what we don't agree on, but instead focus on what we do agree on...And let God be God.

Friday, June 3, 2011


Most who know me, know that I'm not the best exercise fan around. I fully admit that I "dabble" in exercising.  I like the idea, but the actually running? Huffing and puffing? Yeah....not so much for me.   I'm always been amazed at my family and friends who do run - and run well! 

And secretly have wished I had that kind of body or strength to run like they do.

When asked if I run, my standard answer is some thing along the lines of "why run if there's no snake, bear, or rapist behind me?" or "no, I prefer to breath". This second response is more of the truth. I run and I just get out of breath so fast it just doesn't seem worth it - like how it's hard to breath in a sauna or on a really hot and humid day in the Deep South.  Then I'm  tired for so long afterwards - where's that extra energy every one talks about???  I haven't seen it!

Drew and I have always been walkers (okay - he would prefer to run, but walks with me). Mostly our walks in the past have been where we catch up with each other - our private marriage counseling sessions if you will. But here, he wants our walks to be more exercise since he is no longer exercising with the office like he did in Guam. So, he has been trying to get me to run some on our walks.  So. I do. A few houses, then I'm done. And he leaves me.  Off he goes to get a good sweat on as he says.

Secretly, he thinks I'm lazy or just plain out of shape. Secretly, I have always wondered if something is wrong with my heart or lungs.

The other day when we were walking he, once again, got me to run. This time I really did try to push my body and run farther than ever.  At the end of it, he looks at me and says, "You're not just breathing heavy, that's a wheeze! I think you have exercise-induced asthma."

I look at him and said, "I've been telling you for years that I don't run because I can't breath!! I wasn't making it up!!"

So, off to the doctor I went and came home with a nice inhaler.  Today was the first morning that I used my new friend. And yes! I did do better!! I ran farther than I ever have - even up a few (minor)hills and was still able to breath! Amazing!!!  And I'm not so exhausted now - which I learned is a sign of the exercise-induced asthma.

Will I ever be a great runner? Probably not. After all, my knees are over forty, but I do hope to be able to run the full loop that Drew does in the morning.  And lose weight....that's always a nice goal.

Time will tell, I guess.