Monday, June 30, 2014

More of William

Back in  March some time, William along with all other juniors in the State of Lou-zee-ana took the ACT.  This was his third time.  Yes, that's a lot....and odd, I know, but  we had him take it as a ninth grader just to see where he was at (he had taken many classes ahead of schedule, so we felt like he was prepared somewhat) know what he needed to work on.  At that point he made a 26 - which we were THRILLED about!! It was high enough to qualify for the in-state tuition program. (He was, also, relieved. We have told our children they are responsible for paying for half of their college - hopefully, through scholarships.) He took it again a year late as tenth grader and made a 28.  Again, we were thrilled.

If it had been up to me, I would have stopped there.  But it wasn't.  As I said, all eleventh graders take it during school here - no exceptions.  Besides, my tax dollars pay for it.  He made a 30.  Yippeeee!!!

Now we were beyond THRILLED!!!  A 30 would get even more scholarships than that 28.  Love it!

But....he made a 26 in the math portion....he wasn't happy about that.   If he had gotten a 28, then he would qualify for the honors program at his current school of choice. He wanted to take it again.

Really??  Sounds like torture to me...but hey! Sure, I'll pay the $36.50....on ONE condition: you study math. He knew from his scores he didn't go very well on the basic algebra part (which he took as a seventh grader) nor did well in geometry (which he took in eight grade).  I wanted him to work on those sections.

And he did. For two weeks before the test on June 14, he worked out math problems as well as reviewed the English part.  Friday night we got his new score: 32 over all and a 32 in the math section!!!!


A 32 will pretty much qualify him for a full ride any where he wants to go.  He's still leaning towards LA Tech an hour away from home, but it's so nice to know he can have his pick of schools and not have to worry about being saddled down with debt after gradation.

At the end of the night, Drew and I looked at each other and wonder out loud how in the world we ended up with such a smart kid! (If you add my ACT score and Drew's together, you might get a promises on that.)  The blessings of the Lord are amazing. We are very grateful.


Thursday, June 26, 2014

All About William

The other night the dishes needed to be put away at the same time as the laundry dinged.  I gave up years ago to being the one who did it all, so while Drew and Ben took charge of the kitchen (which is only fitting since Ben has kitchen duty this month), I had William help me with the laundry.  After all, as I told him, this load was mostly his stuff.

But my Mr. Seventeen had THAT look on his face.   I'm sure you know the one.  The one that says I was interrupting a very important moment in his life.  That couch really needed him to lay on it - at that very moment.

I tried to get him in a better mood - "Come on - you love spending time with me!!  And don't you love helping the Laundry Fairy??!!??"

His reply? "No. I want the Laundry Fairy to just magically do the laundry and put it my basket."

Yea, well.  That may happen during the school year when you are busy, but during the summer? You will get off your lazy butt and help me!!

Oh, to be  seventeen again.

Today was the day he decided to mow the yard.  We had talked about this earlier in the week, and I told him I would wake up him when I came in from my walk sometime between seven and eight.  I went to wake him up around 7:40ish, but it took about twenty minutes for him to actually get out of bed.  Later in the day he said he didn't remember me coming in the room...just him waking up to his lights on and the door open.

I didn't even ask how late he stayed up reading.

He really didn't want to be Yard Boy today.  (Not really my problem.) It did take him almost all day to do the yard.  Not that he worked continuously.  After all, that would have taken more energy than he had. He needed to stop to watch the US World Cup game, eat, watch another soccer game, watch Ben play on the Sports Center.....oh, there are just so many things that needed to be done.

Mowing?  Edging? Raking?  Only if I have to.

You like that car you drive, right? Then yes, you have to.

One thing that he has learned is NOT to say "I just don't feel like it". Nothing gets my blood pressure up more than hearing that.  After all, that's what being an adult - especially a mom - is all about: doing what needs to be done no matter how you feel about it. Which is why he just grunts instead of saying those words (not that he really needs any reason to grunt...that's his first language after all.)

But at the end of this day, my yard looks great,and my Mr. Seventeen is tired.  I'm sure he'll sleep well tonight.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

A Two Bath Day

For the second time this week I ate lunch out. Yesterday I meet four other friends for a final lunch as one is moving next week to Alabama with her military husband.  Today I met my friend Tricia to get all the good info (aka gossip) about last week's youth camp.  As I was getting my drink I could not find the lids for the cups.  Hmmmm   No problem, I thought. 

Well.....apparently, it was a problem...

Just after the severe severed our hamburgers, I reached over for the kitchen....and hit my drink....and it landed my lap.

I was pretty much much so I had to come home and not only change clothes, but take a second bath as I was sticky in...well....all sorts of places.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Camp Report

My wonderful little duckies came home from camp at two a.m. Sunday.  The bus broke down - of course - and so they were two hours late.  But at least they are home.

Well.  Melissa was home.  She left today around 2 p.m. for the elementary camp where she is a counselor. My little girl was so tired! She went to sleep last night around 9:30. I had to wake her up at 11 this morning.  While most of her clothes were packed, she still had to gather some of her things and do a few chores before she left. I think she will be totally exhausted by the time she gets back Friday morning. At least this camp is shorter, close by, and since it's with elementary kids, they will be going to be before midnight each night.

Sunday we were able to sit and let the kids tell Drew and I stories from camp week.  Several were entertaining.... One night each group were to do a skit and it turned out most did comedy skits based on the staff members of the church.   I wish I had seen a few of those!  They sounded hilarious!

Of course, being a bunch of teenagers there were some problems. One issue was not new: modesty. One person definition of what modesty looks like is different from another person's....and yes.  The teen girls don't like the youth leaders definition.   For me, it seems to be an issue of respect.  You know the rules of the camp before you't complain.  If you don't like the rules, then don't come!  Many liked seeing how much they could  get away with....such a spirit of rebellion and pride in the end showing it's ugly head.

Then there was Benjamin and his lost wallet.  This is not the first time this child has lost a wallet.  Luckily, the last two times God had some grace for the child and it was returned to him with every cent still there.

This time?

Nope.  Totally lost.

On the way to camp in New Mexico, well over 15 hours from here, they stopped to eat on Monday morning (they left Sunday night at ten and drove all night long....and still didn't get there until after noon on Monday.) After they ate at a fast food restaurant, a few of the boys including William and Benjamin went into the nearby Wal-Mart.  Ben remembers having his wallet in his hands as he walked into the Wal-Mart, but doesn't remember what happened to it after that.

Over these last few years I have told the boys time and time again to NOT wear soccer shorts off the soccer field as they have no pockets to keep their wallets in.  Being boys that think they know better, they ignored mom.


Benjamin had no where to put his wallet because he decided to wear soccer shorts on the bus ride to camp. And apparently, set his wallet down in the store as he was looking at something.  Urgggg......
makes me sick to think of how much money was in there.....he had at least $70 in cash and a few  gift cards....absolutely sick to my stomach!!

When I told this story to a friend, she said jokingly that maybe I can get him a "man-purse".  Sadly, he had one!!! Each of the boys have an Ole Miss soccer bag.  Ben used his to keep his wallet, a few snacks, his Epi Pen, a book...just a few things he wanted with him on the bus.  But when they stopped for breakfast he decided to just take his wallet not the whole bag.

Thankfully, I forgot to give him his military ID card, so at least that's not lost (that would have been a huge headache to replace!!!). I'm hoping this will be a lesson to him.

But just in case its not, I have taken all his soccer shorts away. He's not allowed to have them anymore....when soccer season returns, he'll get them back - but not now.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Today's This and That

Never did get the audiobook program to personal Geek-On-Call (Drew) has had a cold this week.  So....I'm sort of staying away from him. I really don't want that seems nasty.

For the last few days I have gotten lots of sewing I have lots of hand sewing to do.

Today I got my hair cut.  I'm having to break-in a new hair dresser. Again.   The first one I really liked here, moved away last summer, so I started seeing a mother of one of Melissa's friends.  The last haircut I felt like she was finally getting use to my hair and I was happy with the end product.

And now she's going into real estate.

So.  I'm now seeing another mother of a teen I know. She's in the same salon - which is close to the house and I love that. I think she did a good job.  I'll know for sure after I wash and style it myself.

Just like EVERY other hair dresser, she tried to straighten my hair. It looked good...for about an hour.  Then it falls.  And starts to curl.  I just go straight to the curl.  Anyway....we'll see in the morning what I think.

While I was working on my hand sewing, we watched another game in the soccer World Cup.  Yikes! Some of these teams are very aggressive and physical!!  That was Greece today as they tied with Japan. While I like cheering for William's 2nd home country, they just could not get it together enough win - even when Greece was playing with one less player due to getting a red card (that's where you get thrown out due to aggressive and physical playing!)  I'm looking forward to watch the US play again on Sunday when I can watch the game with my two favorite soccer player.

Now we are watching baseball...which I think is pretty boring...even if it is Ole Miss. Love Ole is just NOT my sport.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014



I had this great idea to listen to an audiobook while I do some hand sewing.  But first, I wanted to see how I would like it, so I tried to find an audiobook for free. Which I did.

But getting it to play on my kindle...or iphone....or laptop???  Seems to be out of my technology ability.  Need to get my personal Geek On Call...yes. That would be my husband.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Camp Day One....

Today was the first day the kids were gone to camp...and it was a lot like the first day they were gone on the mission trip during Spring Break:  I cleaned. Thankfully, nothing was as dirty as it was during that Spring Break cleaning spree.

Not sure why I'm like this. I think better when my house is clean. Also, I now have five days to play.

I have several sewing/quilting projects I would like to work on.....errands one day.....finish a book start another one.....

Last night we watched Ole Miss play in the baseball College World Series....tough loss.  Tonight we are watching the USA play in the World Cup (that's soccer if you're living under a rock or just don't care about soccer). At the moment we are winning....but that second half is a long one.... We scored within 37 SECONDS!!  Amazing!!  May it happen again!!!

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Food Truck Round-Up

After VBS on Friday we went with some friends to a food truck round-up. After seeing so many shows on the Food Network about food trucks, we wanted to see if we could find some good food. While mine was just okay, everyone else said their food was really good. 

Saturday, June 14, 2014

The Moment of Opportunity

On Friday we survived the last day of VBS. I finally just gave up trying to get all the preschoolers (anywhere from 19 to 32 in four different classes) to listen to me.  Some just can't....too many kids....too much going on...very loud in the gym....and for 15 minutes it just wasn't worth it.  But I do think the preschoolers had fun.  We did lots of relays....with small balls, with bean bags. We played with the large parachute and played with hula hoops. In the end the main goal of running off some of their energy while the main teachers had a small break was achieved.

Friday as the boys and I were getting out of the car, both boys just jumped out of the van and ran for the church gym practically before I had my door open.   I smiled. Yep. They are ready to see their friends.  I was very pleasantly surprised to see William turn around about half-way and make his way back to the van to help me bring in the box of small bean bags.

Awww. My heart melted a bit.  See!! I AM raising a thoughtful sweet boy!!!  I even told him so: "That was so sweet! Thank you for helping me!"

As I walked into the gym a few steps behind William, I see him taking the bean bags out and PELTING his brother with them.


Yep. Some times kids can make you look a good. Other times, they are peeing on the car tires at Wal-Mart. (back story here)

Later in the day as I was telling the story to Drew, I asked William if he planned it that way (to throw the bean bags at Benjamin). He said no..."Just took the moment of opportunity."

Yep. That's boys.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Chef Benjamin

Today the boys and I survived day three of VBS....only two more to go!!  The first class was....well...crazy.  Just too many kids.  And for a portion of the class, there are other classes in gym. Which means these three and four year olds just want to yell and wave at their older siblings and friends.  The older kids are in the mist of their games, and so there's lots of screaming and yelling and none of my classes can hear me.

I really should just bring ear plugs and let my classes run wild.

Two more days....two more days.....

(Melissa is helping with the third grade class and loves it!!)


On a different subject.....

One of my goals this summer is to have the kids cook more.  Melissa and Benjamin cook fairly often, but William?  Only sandwiches and the occasional scrabbled egg.. None of the kids were around when I made out my menu, so this time around they had to choose from my menu instead of what they wanted to cook.  Benjamin had his turn tonight. He made my (or rather my mother's) meatballs and spaghetti sauce.  He did a great job!!  Very tasty! I probably will make William take his turn tomorrow night....otherwise he will try to find a way out of it.

I'm not interested in making them perfect chefs, but would like to be reassured that when they leave my house, they will be able to feed themselves with something other than grilled cheeses and frozen stuff.  After all, if you can follow a recipe, you can pretty much cook anything.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

So Far This Week

It's VBS week here.  As I have for the last few years, I am teaching preschool games. Overall, it's probably the easiest job in all of VBS. I arrive late teach four 15 minute classes, then leave early. But mainly, I teach it because I didn't have an excuse not to teach.....not very Christian like I know. It seems that the older my kids get, the less I like little kids. The boys are helping me, so at least I get to spend time with them. This year the first class had 27, the next 16, then 27, and the last was two classes combine with a whopping total of 33 preschoolers. 


Yep. That's a lot of kids!! Hopefully, all those 15 minutes will go fast.  Yesterday we played golf with a shortened swim noodle and a little plastic 5 inch ball. Today it's the parachute....that usually makes them crazy, so I'm excepting lots of yelling and screaming today...maybe I should grab my ear plugs....

The boys are taking piano lessons this month.  As usually, Benjamin has complained at just about every turn. I'm convinced that he complains just to irate me.  None of my kids liked the teacher that are assigned to through the school. In fact, Melissa and William quit going to lesson with him.  Benjamin would like to, but in this family all kids take piano lessons until the end of 8th grade, then it's their choice.  He has one more year.   This summer they are taking lessons with one of the youth workers - it's actually William's Sunday school teacher.  He's newly married....about 26 yrs old or so...very likable.  (The guy through the school is very, very quiet....waaay too quiet....almost no personality quiet.) Both boys like Brian a lot, so I'm hoping this is a good experience for them both. I think William missed taking lessons.  I'm really enjoying the house filling with music! (Melissa is not taking due to total lack of interest and how much she is gone this month.)

The kids and I are looking forward to Friday.  There's a "food truck round-up" across town and we are hoping to find it on Friday.  We've seen several shows on the Food Network about food trucks. Hopefully, we'll find it...and hopefully, the food is as good as the TV host say it is.

While we are across town, we are will, also, be on the lookout for costumes the kids need for camp.  Each night of camp there's a dress-up theme.  This year it's America, Disney, Fan Night, Dress Your Best, and What You Want to be When You Grow-up.  So, we'll be hitting a few thrift stores to see what we can find.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Marking Off

I love it when I can mark people off my prayer list:

...A local friend recently had a double mastectomy, but thankfully, does NOT need chemo or radiation.  She'll return to work in the next week or so.

...A dear friend living in the northwest, also, got a great doctor report when her breast biopsy came back normal.  On top of this health scare, her husband had already moved to their new base while she and the kids finished out school.  School is now over and he's with her to help her pack up the house and move across the country.  Very good to know they are back together physically and not just in spirit.

I really looking forward to late August when I can mark off another family off my deployment list....they have these last few months of a year deployment... I remember those last few months of Drew being deployed to would think the last few months and/or weeks would go by fast, but they don't....I think they are worse than the first months.  She seems to be holding  up well, but I know how long summer came be....

Of course, it always seems that as soon as I mark someone off my list I hear of someone else needed extra prayers. This afternoon, I found out that a couple in our Sunday school class are in the final stages of a divorce. I was speechless!!  I had no idea they were having troubles. Very sad.  But explains why I haven't seen them together in class in awhile.

She's Home

Melissa made it home yesterday from her trip to Ole Miss and then her camp. She was very tired - which I excepted. I knew she would not get a lot of sleep. She even texted one night at 1:15 a. m. saying she was STILL up writing an essay. 

Well....such is life at nerd camp. 

Her team placed fourth out of eight. Not the first place they got last year.  

It was so nice to have all my little duckies at my dinner table last night. Life feels complete when that happens. 

Friday, June 6, 2014



Tonight I went through my cameras and pictures. My cameras were a mess in that one worked and one did not....yes...that's what happens when you have kids.  Of course, I should be totally honest.  I'm sure I dropped the camera as much as the kids did....but they were in possession of it when it finally died.   Anyway.  I needed to get the photos off of it - so glad photo cards come OUT of the camera!  Also, I got my photos off my iphone. 

I came across several photos I forgot about. Including this one.  We were waiting for Melissa Easter Sunday after church.  I guess William got bored...but he is totally safe to ride home!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Air U

Air U is the newest attraction around here. It's a building full of trampolines. And yes. As you would think, the kids love it. Today I was one of the drivers and chaperones for the youth group to attend. 

While I didn't jump, I did have fun watching the kids especially, William. He along with the other high school boys, pretty much stayed in the dodge ball area. (I could have done without the whistle of the referee....oh, the headache...)

Wednesday, June 4, 2014


Back in late February or early March I deactivated my facebook account.  I just got to the point that I knew too many trivial details about too many people. Also, I was slightly annoyed at all the other stuff....too much political stuff....too many "interesting" articles...just too much junk. And to be honest, I got my feelings hurt due to a comment a friend said....and I didn't like getting private messages from old high school boyfriends. As Drew has said many times "there's a lot of junk!"

So. I deactivated my account.

At the time I really didn't know if I would re-join.  I knew if I did, I would "de-friend" many.  After all, if I wouldn't send them a Christmas card, why would I want them to know about my day-to-day life?  I know several friends that see facebook as "mission field". To some degree, I agree with that premise. But I, also, felt a "release" from that from the Lord.

I have to admit that I missed it. I missed being in the first, anyway. Then as the weeks and months went by, I got use to the not knowing and it was nice! A few friends texted or emailed, and I was able to stay in touch with them that way. After all, my email and phone numbers have stayed the same for several years now. If someone wants to get in touch with me, they can.

One friend from church told me about a conversation or rather a disagreement she and a fellow church member had one facebook.  Yea....that's what I'm NOT missing.

As school got out and summer began, I started to think that I would rejoin...but had no real date in mind. A few days it crossed my mind, but then I would get busy and just never got around to it.

Tonight I got an email saying that my account had been reactivated. Since Drew was on the computer, I asked him about it.  And was shocked to hear him say he did! WHAT?!!!  Turned out, when he opened a new tab in windows it had the facebook page as an option. He thought I had rejoined (he knew I was thinking about it). Just by him logging on, it reactivated my account. That was a surprised....I really thought it would be more work than that.

I told him no, MY account wasn't the reason there was a tab - William had check his account today.

But since he reactivated the account, I decided to go ahead and get on to see what all was going on.

What did I find?  About all the same things.....not that I was really shocked or anything.

I was still overwhelmed with all the trivial stuff about soo many people....just too many!! Do I really need to know where one friend ate supper tonight? Or that another friend went on a good run? But there are friends that I miss......especially, several of my friends from Guam. One recently had a baby....I didn't even know she was pregnant! I did love seeing pictures of my friends and their kids....seeing how they have changed.

In the end, I deactivated the account again.  I like knowing less.....makes for a quieter mind and emotions.  I am still on Instagram (mainly for the beautiful pictures by the professionals photographers I follow instead social aspects of it)....and I plan to keep this blog going, so I'm not totally out of the loop when it comes to social media. But I think for right now, I keep off facebook.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014


Over the last week or so I have been using one of the reading plans in the You Version Bible app called "100 Descriptions of God".  Yesterday one of the words was "diligent" based on Philippians 2:13.  Not sure if I have ever thought of the Lord in that light before, but it has stuck with me. And since we are to conform to His imagine, I have to look at my life and see where I'm being diligent....or not...ouch!

While there are MANY areas I want to be more diligent in, one area I am trying to be better at - to be diligent! - is exercising.  My neighbor, Alice, and I have been meeting at 7:30 most mornings to walk. Then afterwards, I use my small free weights. I am NOT very good at exercising....never have really liked it.  But. This summer? I'm trying to be diligent.

Monday, June 2, 2014

Just Over Lunch

Today I went to my mom's to get Melissa. She had been with my aunt and niece at Ole Miss for the weekend. They had a blast!  She talked just about non-stop over lunch. I think she's already planning to return next year for the yearly event.  She even went to a baseball game....and now likes baseball.

And of course, she is even more sure she wants to attend Ole Miss.

After lunch I dropped her off at a cyber/robotic camp for the week.  It's a small group - 3 boys and 3 girls, I think she'll have fun.  And learn a lot. William went two years ago.....he left with a lot of knowledge about the cyber world....and with the knowledge he doesn't want to work in that field.  Good to know.  So, while this is a camp, she'll be working this week  - I don't think there's much "fun" involved.

The teacher in charge was concerned about her food allergies, but I'm not.  She usually is very careful (her run in with a nut in February was an odd moment....or a blond moment for her) about her food.  But he knows what to do....and she knows what to do....I'm not concerned.  For the most part they will be eating at the college's cafeteria.   Knowing my teen, I see a lot of pizza and hamburgers this week for her.

I missed her this weekend.  It was good to see her - even if it was only just for lunch.