2nd quick post of the day

ok...be warned.  the picture i am posting is not for the "faint" of heart, if you will. but i felt it needed to be done.  i really felt i should update you on the surprise i encountered and wrote about here. well, on the way to church this morning we drove by our next door neighbors' house and saw this...
oh how sad this makes me...one thing i really like about our neighborhood is the critters--and now we have one less.

just a quick post...

Ok...I know--you've probably gathered by now that I really like the movie (500) days of summer.  well, i do.  and so today i would like to share one of my favorite scenes...an homage to the scene in the movie enchanted, set to music from conventional 80's band hall & oates.  i hope it brightens everyone's day...


happiness is....

MDE is a girl after my own heart...i introduced her to broadway shows/tunes when she was 5 and she was hooked {praise God!}. one of our favorite showtunes comes from you're a good man, charlie brown--"happiness..." won't you take a minute and enjoy??

so, in honor of MDE beginning her senior year of high school this week--my smiles come in the form of "what is happiness..."--a list of simple pleasures--
  soft melting butter on a hot, fluffy biscuit

the smell of new crayons...mmmmmm!

a personal card or letter received in the mailbox--and no, i am not talking about the mailbox on your computer....
ranunculuses + peonies...
their beauty amazes me

picture books

floating in my wonderful pool--feeling the hot sunshine, the cool water...listening to nothing but my thoughts and the tink-tink-tinkle of our kinetic sculpture

what are your simple pleasures...what brings you happiness?


what to read next

i just finished reading the guernsey literary & potato peel pie society--a light, easy read. however, each summer, i try to visit/revisit a classic, but this year i haven't done this yet. in summers past, i have "tackled" east of eden, a separate peace, to kill a mockingbird, the great gatsby--just to name a few. which brings me to my dilemma--i need to get started on a classic, but what? i am debating: catcher in the rye, crime & punishment, tender is the night? anything else? i tried anna karenina one summer and almost finished it, but...didn't. so i would like something fairly manageable, if you know what i mean?

the soundtrack of "my life"...

you know how you watch a movie and the "perfect" song plays over the action--or a montage of images seems to have the best song? well, today our family had to deal with a comedy of errors and miscommunications. this leads to my thinking...if a soundtrack played over "my life", what would i want it to be like? this list is just a few soundtracks that i would love to hear as i face love, heartache, fun times, frustrating times, etc in my everyday life--
  • grace of my heart--how can you not love burt bacharach teaming up with elvis costello?
  • once--tender and heartbreaking
  • garden state--simon & garfunkel, coldplay, the shins...absolutely charming
  • the big chill--just pure fun
  • (500) days of summer--the harmonies of simon & garfunkel, the haunting voice of regina spektor, classics from the smiths...what more could you want?
  • win a date with tad hamilton...well, i know--but you need some cheeky, "cute" songs, too!
so...what music would you like accompanying your life?


a summer day of surprises, sweat, and sacrifice

first of all, don't you love alliteration? if there is anything fun about writing...it has to be alliteration. it's just so easy to use! ok, enough of literary terms...
let me tell you all about an interesting day...last friday. it began with an early wake up--around 6:15. i showered...put the dogs in the "back
40"...set up my cereal breakfast...and went to get the newpaper from the yard. a little back story, first--about 3 weeks ago, the kids and i discovered that the neighborhood feral cat had delivered 4 kittens earlier this summer. well, one day the kittens chose our front porch/bushes to play and romp and we gleefully watched them. we hadn't seen them around much since that day. so....when i went to get the paper, i heard a rustle in the bushes. assuming the kittens were back, i rushed over to have a peek. and to my surprise-- no kittens! but instead i saw this:
only bigger...and scarier!!!! needless to say, i did what any sane person does--i screamed and ran for the camera. but by the time i got back, he was scampering away. oh well.
after breakfast, we loaded up the car and headed to pick up OFK (our friend Kim) who graciously sacrificed a work day (by working 4 10-hour days) to ride with us to college station to give us her perspective on texas a & m. by the time we hit the donut store and starbucks, we got on the road about 45 minutes later. why does it always take soooo long to actually get on the highway when going on a road trip? the tour was very beneficial. you really get a sense of the magnitude of a campus that has 60,000 students! only one problem during our tour...it was so hot, so humid. we probably sweated enough to fill kyle field. we would walk and "tour" whatever building was in our path, just to get the a/c. despite the heat, we had an awesome time.
so for now, we are done with our spring and summer of college tours...i say "for now" because there is one more on the east coast we just never had time to fit in. so MDE will go ahead and apply and if she gets in & feels like it is a true possibility, we will make the time.


this week's smiles come from...

i hope that you all have been blessed with smiles this week. for me, these are just a very few of the things that gave me an opportunity to smile--
we sang this hymn in church today..."o let all that is in me adore Him!"
a visit to a ben & jerry's in college station--do you see a pattern week to week about what makes me smile?
my whole family and several friends got to play scrabble at our nursing home...although there were many laughs, unfortunately, my team came in last! oh rats:a-d-z-e-s, y-o-u, and an used q!
family road trip!!!
an adorable, cheeky music video



they say that laughter is...the best medicine {unknown}, is by definition healthy {doris lessing}, and is inner jogging {norman cousins}. there is even a new workout system called laugh away. check it out on www.laughawayseries.net for a good chuckle. some people yawn when they see someone else yawn. for me, i can't help but laugh when i see others laughing. i believe laughter is a wonderful manifestation of joy! i love laughing. so many things can make me laugh--but the following are things that never fail to generate a true guffaw:
the muppets...the show, the movies, and i definitely relate to fozzie bear and his wince-inducing jokes
arrested development...yes, i know it's cancelled, as many of my favorite, misunderstood tv series often are {pushing daisies, for example} but you can watch it on dvd AND there is talk that they are making a movie.
is there anyone funnier on tv and in movies than kristen wiig?
if you haven't watched this video on you tube yet...rush right to it NOW! kittens inspired by kittens...so simple and yet so guffaw-worthy no matter how many times you watch it. this young girl takes a kitten book and "narrates" what each kitten is thinking/doing. absolutely precious and wholeheartedly funny. MDE {my daughter emilie} and i can recite it--and believe me, we do it often for no reason other than it makes us laugh. few things are as valuable as sharing a laugh with someone you love....
two very funny men on TV are conan o'brien and neil patrick harris...i understand that for some people, conan is an aquired taste. but for me, i love his self-deprecating, pop culture referring, goofy humor. plus i love his hair.
now...nph makes me laugh with characters like barney stinson and dr. horrible. he brought such a fun air to the tony awards and he is planning on hosting the emmys {not that i know very many shows this year with my attempt at reduced tv watching...that's altogether another story for another day}. besides being so boyishly cute--the guy sings!!!!
most days i try to read a couple {if not all on particularly lazy days} of my favorite blogs. some are designs sites, some craft sites, a few entertainment sites, and of course, my friends and family sites. but there is one site i never miss. why you ask? well, even if you didn't ask let me tell you...it is called cakewrecks and oh my goodness! there have been some entries that make me laugh so hard that tears stream down my face. i want everyone who has a snarky sense of humor to visit this site. i am just amazed that these things are real...that people who work in our bakeries can make mistakes like these...and often it is the comments she blogs that are the real icing on the cake {forgive me for that...remember, i can relate to fozzie}.
so...now that i have shared what makes me laugh--won't you share with me? there's always room in my repertoire for anything that brings laughter.
i will leave you with one last quote that i hope inspires you to laugh today....


...and why have a blog?

ok...so MHD (that stands for my husband, David) and i were at a friends' house having dinner and the subject of blogs came up. MFM (my friend, Molly) writes a wonderful blog called The Story on Morning Glory and we were discussing how i had always wanted to have a blog but just never set anything up...now i know why, but that's a story for another day. Anyway, the question was raised "why have a blog?"...is it pride? are people really interested in the little details of our lives? My response to this question is probably not--but for me, it's just like a journal, only more fun. You see, you can add photos, links, and all sorts of "tech-y" things. And how wonderful is it hitting the backspace button to delete misspellings and things that just didn't come out right? it's all so neat with no left-handed smears!
MFM has a lot to write about these days...she is expecting her first child. my sister has a blog...down the street creations (which is an etsy blog)...but that is because she has an etsy shop. my niece just started blogging...the decisive bride. Can you guess what she blogs about? well, that brings me to a slight dilemma...what do i have to write about. i guess for me--well, i will just write about the minutiae of everyday life. i will tell my friends about my blog...they can read it if they want, but that's not the point. i just enjoy writing and expressing myself on "paper"...i have never been a big talker. So, for now i will continue to blog (i have lots of ideas for topics)...and if you are inclined--i would love to read your comments.

Simply put...

how i desire to live the way this hymn so beautifully describes...
  1. all to Jesus i surrender; all to Him i freely give; i will ever love and trust Him, in His presence daily live.
    • Refrain: i surrender all, i surrender all; all to Thee, my blessed Savior, i surrender all.
  2. all to Jesus i surrender; humbly at His feet i bow, worldly pleasures all forsaken; take me, Jesus, take me now.
  3. all to Jesus i surrender; make me, Savior, wholly Thine; let me feel the Holy Spirit, truly know that Thou art mine.
  4. all to Jesus i surrender; Lord, i give myself to Thee; fill me with Thy love and power; let Thy blessing fall on me.
  5. all to Jesus i surrender; now i feel the sacred flame. oh, the joy of full salvation! Glory, glory, to His Name!
  6. --Judson W. Van DeVenter, 1896
  7. Luke 14:33 So therefore, any one of you who does not renounce all that he has cannot be my disciple.