Friday, July 30, 2010

So much to say and so little time to say it...

I finally figured out how to reset my password! So here I am again. We just got back from an amazing mini-trip to Yosemite and it was just beautiful! I will post a few pics as soon as I download them from the camera and get them to disk. The waterfalls were still going, the rivers and streams were filled with crystal clear water. The girls got to swim in one of the rivers in Yosemite Valley. We hiked up to Bridalveil Falls and so did everyone else! Too many people there! The road to the Tioga Pass was beautiful and had fewer people. The lakes were breathtaking and with all the snow we had this year, they were full of water! We have to go fishing next time. This was an exploratory trip. Got all our info and we are ready to head back soon! I have been wanting to do the drive through Yosemite for the last few years and finally, we went! So much fun!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Spiders and Scorpions and Centipedes, OH MY!!!

We have bugs. Lots and lots of bugs. Good bugs, bad bugs, bugs that fly around. Big, bad, ugly bugs. We moved here on March 1. Seven months. We just found a scorpion in the shower this morning. They are fast. It is about 1 1/2 inches long. We found a centipede a few weeks ago next to the front door. Inside the house. It was more than three inches long. It was so gross. All legs and pincers on the back and 1/2 inch feelers on the front. Eww. The scorpion is not quite as creepy, but okay, there should not be scorpions in my house. We have found black widows in the house. And there are regular spiders EVERYWHERE. I am totally fine with all these things being outside. We have three inch long caterpillars on the front porch, but NOT IN THE HOUSE. There is this cool website called and they are located in So. Cal, so I have gone there to find out about the bugs we found. I put the centipede in a container and figured, after the cat had scared it half to death, that it would die soon anyway. I put it in a Ziploc plastic container with the lid on. THREE WEEKS LATER, it was still alive! I figured if it lasted that long it deserved to live. So I released it over the fence into the wild area behind the house. Hopefully it doesn't come back to seek revenge! I didn't realize it had been three weeks until I figured it out after. I wouldn't have kept it in there for that long. We have this thing called an Eye Clops. It basically magnifies things so that you can watch them on TV, at something like 200x magnification. Well, we were planning to look at the centipede, but it didn't die! So much for roaches, I think after a nuclear holocaust, the centipedes will rule the world!

Anyway, so I think I have figured out the reason for all the bugs. Not only the fact that we live two doors down from a wild area, but also because the sprinklers are set to go on three times per day and the grass is so lush that we have toadstools growing in it. I think the bugs are enjoying all the water. Need to cut that down. The owners of the house adjusted the water so that the plants would grow and the bugs are thriving! So I am adjusting it down. And I am going to look into getting an exterminator. It's time.

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

The Good Dog

Jenny is our German Shepherd. We used to have two. Schaeffer had to be put down. He was really old. Jenny has had quite the life so far.

We got her three years ago. She was just a few months old and got bit by a rattlesnake that got into our backyard in Lancaster. She almost died. But, with a lot of money, medicine works. She spent the entire weekend going from one hospital to the other (the emergency vet is only open when the regular vet isn't and you have to transport the animal back and forth). This happened on a Friday, at 6:00pm. Anyway, she is fine now and no worse for wear.

Jenny has always been very rambunctious. She was bred specifically to have "high drive", a term used to describe dogs that are to be trained in Schutzhund, the German protection dog training. She was not meant to be a backyard dog. But we didn't have the money to do the training, and so she didn't get it. So, she got busy in the backyard. Destroying everything.
The picnic table. Like a big termite attacked it.
The kids balls that got left out. She shredded them.
The resin chairs (ate them)
The patio supports. She chewed them up.
The sprinklers. She would attack them and rip them out of the ground.
She ruined the grass.
She ruined everything that got in her way.
She jumped on people who went in the backyard.
You know that show, "It's Me Or The Dog", well, that is how I felt.
Until we moved.

I took both dogs to the vet to get Jenny her Rabies shot and have Schaefer put down. Then she came with me to the new house. But this was not the same Jenny that went with me to the vet. This Jenny is pretty close to perfect. She is calm. She is well-behaved. She rolls around on her little tiny patch of grass. She doesn't eat the sprinklers. She even comes in and sleeps in the doggy crate at night and doesn't want to go back outside in the morning. She doesn't jump anymore. Scott had purchased something to get her to stop jumping. He never opened it and took it back the other day. We never used it. Didn't need to.

Maybe it was the wind. Maybe it was seeing her buddy get left at the vet. Maybe it was something else. But Mama is very happy now that we have a well-behaved dog! She still kicks up her heels and runs in circles when she gets excited, but she is really, very good. We were going to find a home for her, but as long as she keeps being good, it isn't a problem. So, I don't know what it was, but we have a very nice dog now. Who knew?

Friday, June 27, 2008

What A Day!

I don't get out much. Sunday we went to church and had people over in the evening. Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we stayed home. Didn't need anything, didn't want to spend the money on gas, etc. Thursday, Jessica called her Papa at 8am and said, "Do you want to go to the beach with us?" How could he say no? So he changed out of his work clothes and put on some shorts and came down the hill. We grabbed a change of clothes and some frozen water bottles and headed out by about 9:30am. We drove out on Hwy 126 through all the orchards and groves (this is a huge agricultural area because of the climate) and as we approached Ventura, we started talking about how long it had been since we had been to Buellton and Solvang and how nice it would be to take a trip up there. Well, we kept going. Had lunch at Pea Soup Anderson's. Dad treated for lunch, so I didn't want to spend a lot. I had the "All-You-Can-Eat" Soup Lunch and the girls had macaroni and cheese and spaghetti. Dad had soup and Chinese Chicken Salad. With our tummies full, we took off. We drove to Solvang and Dad was looking for a place to park. He ended up going through town and we found the Santa Inez Mission, so we stopped to take a look around. They have very beautiful grounds and it was nice and peaceful. Over on one side of the grounds there was a path that had crosses and on each cross was one of the Stations of the Cross, numbered and with a description of what each picture was. It was very nicely done. Jessica stopped to read and look at each of the pictures. We also walked through the rose garden. Beautiful!

Next we were off to wander around the town a bit, so we parked on a side street and got out to look around. We stopped at a wine and cheese shop. I noticed that they had Silver Oak and I asked if they had something similar in taste to the '93 Silver Oak we had just had. He said he didn't have that, but he had the '03 Silver Oak, which was $100 per bottle. Said if he could get it, the '93 would be $240! I told him we didn't have that much money, but was there something for less that would be nice? He suggested the Arnold Palmer Cabernet. $14/bottle. That's better. Dad bought two bottles. Then we went on to a bakery and got the obligatory tub of Solvang butter cookies.

We decided to head back so we would have time to spend at the beach. The girls got to have a little taste of Solvang and the mission and so we had to move on.

Next, on the way back toward Santa Barbara, we stopped at a U-Pick Blueberry Stand. Who knew there was such a thing? They had rows and rows of blueberries and they were good! We didn't pick too many. I think they were affected by the heat waves of the past week and a lot of them were wrinkled. We will have to try again another time. But it was cool! And they were delicious! On we went...

To the beach! There is a little alcove beach next to a park off of Seaward Avenue in Ventura and it is awesome. The grass park has swings and a playground, clean restrooms and a sand beach. There is also a big "ship" parked in the sand and it has a rope thing attached to a cable that you can hold on to and it carries you down to the sand. Really fun! Rebekah was too scared to go on it the last time we were there, but yesterday she did and she loved it! She went on it three times, though the second time she fell off. She didn't get hurt, she just fell in the sand, and she got on it after that, so I guess she was okay. Jess loves it and goes on as much as possible. They also enjoyed getting their feet wet in the ocean and the water was COLD!!! I got my feet wet, too! Then we went to Andria's Seafood Restaurant which has, by far, the best food around there! Best fish and chips I have ever had and then we also tried the onion rings. They were phenomenal. The only bad thing was that we had to split the order four ways and there wasn't enough! So yummy! They also have a fresh fish market at the place and everything is fresh!

We stopped for gas (Dad's little Saturn got 35mpg!) and then we hit a veg./fruit stand on the way home. Got oranges, grapefruit, tomatoes, bananas, strawberries, cucumbers, plums and zucchini. And peanuts in the shell for Jessica. She loves those. And then, we headed for home. After the delay because of an accident on the 126, we got home at about 8:45pm. The girls were ready for bed! Kissed and hugged Papa goodbye and kissed and hugged Daddy goodnight and they were off to bed. What a fun day! I took the disposable camera, so when I get the pics developed, I will post some.

Monday, June 23, 2008

So, we have this wine...

I know very, very little about wine. Like, some are red, some are white, some are sweet and some are not. That about covers it. Well, last night we had some people over from church. So our priest's wife and I go into the family room to see if we have any wines that look appealing. I start reading off names to her and she says, "No, that's, that's sweet." I said, "Silver Oak". She says, "That is an expensive wine!" Apparently they had this particular wine at the home of some people that know wine and it was good. And expensive. We picked it up at a winery in Las Vegas, I believe it was the wine cellar at the Rio (where we got married) when we were there several years ago. Not knowing what was good, we asked them for a recommendation and that is what we ended up with. Two bottles. I doubt that it cost more than $20 per bottle. We would not have spent that much. Like I said, I don't know much about wine. So, we opened it last night and I sent her home with the little bit that was left. It was good. Very good. No bitterness, no wierd flavors. I don't usually like wines that are not sweet, but this was very good. So, for fun, I just now pulled it up on the internet. 1993 Silver Oak Cabarnet. Okay, the three prices I found were $115, $150 and $169.99. One place had it for $266.99!!! I about fell on the floor. I think that is funny. I am glad that someone who really enjoys red wine got to enjoy it. We will have to save the other bottle for some special occasion. Funny. Cheers, my friend!

Friday, June 20, 2008

31,000 Scientists Can't Be Wrong

Let me just jump on my bandwagon here for a little bit.

Really. Al Gore says that there are only a few skeptics left and that there is an overwhelming consensus in favor of the global warming theory. I never really did believe it. It just seems too ridiculous. But I guess I am a skeptic. After all, I am one of those who still believes that God really did create the earth in six days and man did not evolve from monkeys. I believe that man really did land on the moon. The human body has an incredible capacity to heal itself, if you allow it to. And, oh yeah, and the earth is round, too. But I digress. There is something called the Petition Project, where more than 31,000 American scientists, including 9,000+ PhD's have signed this petition, which basically states that they do not agree that human-caused emissions are causing global warming. Which I have been saying for a while now. This project was put together by a man named Arthur Robinson, who has also homeschooled his six children in the twenty years since his wife passed away. He developed a self-teaching method for homeschooling them and now has the program available on CD. The children were raised with no sugar and no television. On a farm where each has had responsibilities and duties. They have thrived over the years. One is now a Professor of Veterinary Medicine and another is a Professor of Chemistry, working with their father at the Oregon Institute of Science and Medicine.
The Petition Project is a separate project from the Institute. It is organized by Arthur Robinson. It is really interesting to read the views of other people besides Al Gore, who is so assertive and cannot believe that there are any "skeptics" left. He has so convinced himself that this global warming is real, that there is no convincing him otherwise.
So I did a little research. Over the past 100+ years, if you can believe the news media, we have been headed for first a warming trend (1895), then a little ice age (1920's), then warming again (1950's), then cooling again (1970's), then, since the late 80's, with the catch phrase, "Global Warming", here we are today. Well, I think God created this earth and put in quite a few damage-control measures. I think it would take a lot to mess it up for real. I'm not saying that we can't mess it up, or that we shouldn't be responsible and take care of what He has given us, but I don't think "Mother Earth" is as fragile as all that.
IMHO, I believe that as long as we take care to do our best and take care of the earth, it will be just fine. Warming shmarming. It's all a bunch of hooey.

Friday, May 02, 2008

Jello Recipe

When Grandma Aurlette passed away, there were some linens and things that had been picked through and nobody else wanted. I took them. I didn't get much, but one of the things that I love is a flour sack towel that has this printed on the front:



You gotta love it.

Cute.And just for fun.

LINES TO MAKE YOU SMILE My personal favorites are in bold. Enjoy!
1.. My husband and I divorced over religious differences. He thought he was God and I didn't.
2.. I don't suffer from insanity; I enjoy every minute of it.
3. Some people are alive only because it's illegal to kill them.
4.. I used to have a handle on life, but it broke.
5.. Don't take life too seriously; No one gets out alive.
6.. You're just jealous because the voices only talk to me
7.. Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.
8.. Earth is the insane asylum for the universe.
9.. I'm not a complete idiot -- Some parts are just missing.
10.. Out of my mind. Back in five minutes.
11. NyQuil, the stuffy, sneezy, why-the-heck-is-the-room-spinning medicine.
12.. God must love stupid people; He made so many.
13.. The gene pool could use a little chlorine.
14. Consciousness: That annoying time between naps.
15.. Ever stop to think, and forget to start again?
16.. Being "over the hill" is much better than being under it!
17. Wrinkled Was Not One of the Things I Wanted to Be When I Grew up.
18.. Procrastinate Now!
19.. I Have a Degree in Liberal Arts; Do You Want Fries With That?
20.. A hangover is the wrath of grapes.
21.. A journey of a thousand miles begins with a cash advance
22.. Stupidity is not a handicap. Park elsewhere!
23.. They call it PMS because Mad Cow Disease was already taken.
24.. He who dies with the most toys is nonetheless DEAD.
25. A picture is worth a thousand words, but it uses up three thousand times the memory.
26.. Ham and eggs? A day's work for a chicken, a lifetime commitment for a pig.
27.. The trouble with life is there's no background music.
28.. The original point and click interface was a Smith & Wesson.
29.. I smile because I don't know what the heck is going on.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008


Speaking with my aunt recently about my Grandma, I started reminiscing about the day I took a trip with my grandma, Aurlette, to downtown Los Angeles several years ago. We spent the day together at the jewelry mart and just doing girl stuff. My grandmother loved to shop. No, really. Other people like to go shopping. She thrived on it. She would get dressed up, usually in a pantsuit, matching shoes, lovely purse, jewels on her fingers, matching sunglasses, sometimes with a scarf, and be ready to go out. A day out shopping with Grandma was A DAY OUT! And going out to a nice restaurant for lunch was a necessity.

I don't really remember if we went looking for something specific or if we were just looking, but Grandma found this ring. Well, actually, a ring guard for her wedding ring. It was, well, HUGE! Beautiful, with diamonds all around. Lots of gold and many, many small diamonds all over. Grandma was hesitant to buy it. She absolutely fell in love with it, but it was expensive.
So, she hesitated. I knew she really loved it. She didn't buy it at first, because it was a lot of money, but we came back to the booth later, after we shopped around a bit more. She SO wanted to get this! I reminded her that a.) you only live once and b.) we probably would not be back to the Jewelry Mart for quite some time and it would probably not be available again. So, she swore me to secrecy as to how much she paid for it and she bought it! She had it sized there and was able to wear it home that day. She loved wearing it! Such an extravagant purchase, but it suited her so well. My grandma, my mother and I all have large hands and as such, we can wear large rings. Lots of gold and stones. With her original wedding ring in place in the center, this just dazzled!

I poked around the jewelry mart that day while we were waiting for her ring to be done. I found a pair of beautiful dark purple teardrop shaped amethysts. About (I am guessing here) 8 carats each. They are huge! About 1/2 long each. Beautiful rich purple. I could not afford to have the stones set, so I was going to just buy the stones and have them set later. Grandma reminded me that we would probably not be back soon, so she offered to pay for one stone and setting, so that I could get them done. I still have these earrings and they are beautiful! And a fun reminder of that day.

We picked up her ring and left the jewelry mart. Boy did we feel like princesses! Then we went to a restaurant that she had always told me about. She said it was called the "Tex", so I was picturing an old fashioned bbq place, sawdust on the floor, etc. I couldn't have been more wrong! Le Freres Taix French Restaurant is a beautiful, fancy FRENCH restaurant! Linen tablecloths, beautiful wood decor, and it has been there since 1927! Was I in for a shock! It was wonderful. My grandma and grandpa had gone there often over the years and she was excited for me to share the experience. It was lovely. The food was delicious and we enjoyed each others company. Such a lovely day! My grandma was a beautiful person, inside and out. She was so very generous and she was always able to find something good, whether it was a person or a situation. She really did look at the bright side of life! She was always so full of life and cheerful. I am so glad that I have these wonderful memories of her!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Seminary Humor

Spending too much time with my husband, discussing his studies, etc. Time for something light.

Karl Barth, Paul Tillich, and Reinhold Niebuhr find themselves all at the same time at Caesarea Philippi. Along comes Jesus, and he asks these three famous theologians, “Who do you say that I am?”
Karl Barth stands up and says: “You are the 'wholly other,' the vestigious trinitatum who speaks to us in the modality of Christomonism.”

Following this, Paul Tillich states: “You are he who heals our ambiguities and overcomes the split of angst and existential estrangement; you are he who speaks of the theonomous viewpoint of the analogia entis, the analogy of our being and the ground of all possibilities.”

Reinhold Niebuhr gives a cough for effect and says, in one breath: “You are the impossible possibility who brings to us, your children of light and children of darkness, the overwhelming oughtness in the midst of our fraught condition of estrangement and brokenness in the contiguity and existential anxieties of our ontological relationships.”

And Jesus looks at them and says, “What?”

A New Do

I got a hair cut. Actually, I got them all cut. Or should I say, I got my hair styled. Because it had no style before. It had been about three years, or more, since I had been to a beauty salon. Sad. Scott cut four inches off the bottom one time and a friend did it another time. My bangs grew out and were no longer bangs. All I did was pull it back in a ponytail and try to get it out of my way. It was annoying more than anything. So I finally broke down and went to have it done. A very nice lady, I highly recommend her. She did a great job on my hair. She was recommended by Laurie. She has a beautiful hair-do, so I figured she must go to someone good. Well, it turned out nice. But I can't get it to do what the hairstylist, Julie, did with it. It was all sort of wispy and soft, flipped up on the bottom and curled in around my face. I will have to work with it and figure out what she did. But it is a good cut and it looks okay the way I blow dried it, even if it isn't the way she did it. Practice, I suppose. All the gray is gone, though, so I am happy. I feel like a girl again. And spending time with women whose ages are double digits didn't hurt, either. Girl time. What a concept!

My things

Things about me. In no particular order. I think I did one of these a long time ago. I am not numbering them, just in case I don't make it to 100. Which I won't. But. At least I am doing it.

I am married.
Happily married.
I am 38.
I always thought 38 was old.
I don't feel old.
I have two beautiful daughters.
They are a handful.
But this is about me.
I am a Wife.
My uncle still calls me Pee-Wee.
Because I could fit in the way back of a VW as a kid.
I can't now.
My daughters think I am beautiful.
Did I mention how much I love them?
My brother died when I was 11.
My mother died when I was 36.
My relationship with my father has grown much closer...and I am glad.
I hate moving.
I have too much stuff.
I am working on this.
I hate to throw things away.
I feel better when I find out other people have messy houses, too.
I like Twinkies.
But only once in a while.
I like chocolate, but I don't consider myself a chocoholic.
I prefer white cake to chocolate cake.
So do the girls. Cool!
I like chocolate chip cookies with only a few chocolate chips.
And I like the dough better than the cookies.
My favorite flavors at Baskin Robbins are pumpkin and winter white chocolate.
At Coldstone, Cake Batter with white chocolate chips and pecans.
At Ben & Jerry's, Cherry Garcia or Cookie Dough.
My favorite meal would probably have to be Rib Eye Steak.
My favorite restaurant is the Smoke House, Toluca Lake, CA.
Favorite food - their garlic bread.
I love to cook and bake.
But nothing TOO difficult! I will leave that to my sister.
I hate washing dishes.
I don't mind 38 so much.
I don't want to be 39.
I have my mothers hands.
I live at the very north end of Los Angeles County.
Out of the city.
Which is the way I like it.
I'm probably not big boned. Bones get blamed a lot.
I love my church family.
And I like where we are living now.
I hate wind.
I hate wind.
Did I mention, I hate wind?
I hate wind.
There is not a lot of wind at the new house.
Which is good, because I hate wind.
I didn't used to hate wind.
I spent six years in the wind.
Maybe someday, I won't hate wind anymore.
I love Star Trek.
And Dirty Jobs. Mike Rowe is hilarious.
And The Twilight Zone.
And Deadliest Catch.
My favorite movie is the Princess Bride...inconceivable!
I highly recommend it.
And Secondhand Lions, too. Don't let the title throw you. Great movie.
Oh, and Ella Enchanted. Very cute.

Well, that is it. If I think of more, I can always do a My things...part deux.

Joann, time for a nice list. Think you can come up with 100 things? More or less.

Bacon Candy

Okay, this I am going to have to try. Everyone likes bacon...even vegetarians. You know I'm right!

This and the bacon cookies. Going to have to look those up on Deacon's website.

Jennie - I will do your list soon, I promise, I just may not get to 100.
Sandy - I am working on it.

Got my hair cut today. Without the extra nine or so inches of hair, my head is lighter and I can think more clearly now! LOL!!! Every time I turn my head, it goes too far!


  • 1 lb Bacon (not thick-cut)
  • 1/4 cup Brown sugar

Cooking Instructions

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees.

Slice bacon into 1/2 inch strips and dredge in brown sugar until thoroughly coated.

Crumple aluminum foil to allow for grease drainage and place it on a baking sheet. Lay out the bacon on this making sure not to overlap pieces.

Bake until crispy. Allow to cool and harden before serving.


It'll be the very first thing that's munched up if you bring it to a party. Guaranteed.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Moving, moving, moving.

On the road again. I have been moving. We moved to Castaic to be closer to our church family, closer to Scott's work, closer to, well, everything. It's not windy here either. That is a definite plus. The novelty of the stairs is gone. Rebekah doesn't want to climb stairs anymore. And my sister was right. Be careful on the stairs, because you will fall. I fell. I got a nice whopper of a bruise on the back of my arm, just above the elbow. It's a doozie. I was really tired when Jess came up to wake me up and fix the TV, which she is still getting used to. Well, I wasn't being careful, as I was half asleep and I slipped and fell down about five steps. My arm crushed the side of a box on the way down and helped bring me to a stop. Good job, Amy! Way to go. The good news is that my body is already so sore everywhere from schlepping boxes up and down and back and forth that I don't think I could possibly do any more damage than I already have. Great.

I am tired. Trying to unload boxes and go back and fill them up again. I still don't have all the stuff out of the other house! Maybe in a week or two. What a job! I will need to rent a truck for the last of the furniture and then that should do it. Oh boy, I hate moving! But I do like that Scott gets up later than he used to and he is home about 45 minutes earlier than he used to. That is really nice. This is good!

The girls love it here. The girl next door is 11 years old. She loves having two little girls next door. She comes over almost every day to see if they can play. We are in a cul-de-sac with only our house and one other. So all the neighborhood kids play here. Right outside. It is nice. The weather is nice. There is no hellacious wind outside blowing everything away that isn't nailed down (and some things that are). So that is good. And plants will grow here as well. There is a grape vine in the front yard and citrus and loquats in the backyard. Cool. All in all, a good move. I just wish it was all done.