Monday, November 24, 2003


1. How many books have you read in the past year?
Not as many as I would have liked. due to limited income and lack of time. I have moved
three times in the last year but at least 25 or more. Normally I can read 3 or 4 300 to 400 page books in one
weekend. I read very fast.

2. What book should be banned based on its boring subject matter?
Any newer school text books. They are so boring and some of the stuff in them is absolutely idiotic or just
downright wrong. It's no wonder school children are less prepared for life after dealing with this junk.

3. What book should be (or should have been) on the 'best seller' list but wasn't?
Don't do bestsellers list. I look at a book cover and read the blurb in side on the jacket or the cover to determine
if I am going to buy it, or read it if I get it from the library.

4. What time of the day do you do most of your reading?
Right now, anytime. When I get a job, it'll be after work and chores.

5. If you were to write a book, what would be its title?
I would write the book first and then let the plot dictate the title.

Speaking of books, which I have before. Who are your favorite authors. What Genre do you like?

I have given a list of my favorite authors but have left a few out. Like W.E.B. Griffin, Robin Cook, Lynn Kurland, Robert Heinlien. Just finished up a New Nora Roberts, and have a Clive Cussler half finished on the bed side table.

I like to read techno-thrillers, Romance, Sci-Fi, just about anything I can get my hands on. I read Reader's Digest, and all the "women's" magazines. I absolutely love mail order catalogs and recipe books. Never order anything from the catalogs, but I still like them.

Friday, November 21, 2003

Friday Five

1. List five things you'd like to accomplish by the end of the year.
By the end of the year? This year? That's a little soon don't you think?
well, I'll give it a try
1. Clean up my credit
2. Get a job
3. Get a home equity loan to do some updating and improvements on the house.
4. Get everything (and I mean EVERYTHING) unpacked.
5. Look into going back to school

2. List five people you've lost contact with that you'd like to hear from again.
This is a hard one...Many of the people I have lost contact with go way back.
1. Rose( best friend from high school).
2. Robert Fuller( guy I knew in the Navy)
3. Ed and Gelli( friends for over 25 years, haven't really lost contact with them, just haven't called them since before I moved from SC)
4. Jim( a friend of mine and my deceased husband's. Haven't talked to him in quite a while).
5. Can't think of a fifth...I'll have to think about it some more.

3. List five things you'd like to learn how to do.
1. Stained glass
2. Play a steel guitar
3. Play a keyboard (the musical kind, not the one I am currently using)
4. Draw, so that I can draw the pictures I see in my mind
5. Work with clay tho make sculptures of the things I see in my mind

4. List five things you'd do if you won the lottery (no limit).
1. Set up a trust
2. Pay off all my bills
3. Buy a new car and furniture.
4. Send gifts of money to all of my family that are in need of some extra
5. Set up a non-profit organization that provides eye-glasses and dental work for people of low/no income who are in desperate need of them ( this is a big problem when you are on a limited income)

5. List five things you do that help you relax.
1. Soak in a bath tub full of fragrant bubbles
2. Burn aromatic candles, oils, and liquid pot-pourri
3. Add a shot of Kahlua or Grand Marnier to my coffee.
4. Lay in bed all day reading a good book
5. Listen to music ( right now it's Trans-Siberian Orchestra)

that's it for my Friday 25. Lets talk about music. What's your favorites? What do you listen to when you drive or are stuck in traffic? What do you listen to to unwind or when you just need the noise?

When driving and stuck in traffic I listen to rock and roll. You know Steve Miller, Boston, Bad Company, Steppenwolf, Iron Butterfly, Dobbie Brothers, Molly Hatchet, BTR, ELO, ZZ Top,
CCR, that kind of stuff.
To unwind or for noise, I listen to Country, the oldies mostly cause I don't like all this new age country clone music... all the newer artists sound and look alike. I listen to Patsy Cline, Webb Pierce, Hank Snow, Hank Williams, Jim Reeves, Mel Tillis. Some of the newer Artists are Vince Gill, Randy Travis, Martina McBride, Ricky Skaggs Suzy Bogus, Pam Tillis.
The only really new one that I like is Toby Keith.

On CD player right now is Dire Straits, Simon and Garfunkle's greatest hits, and Trans-Siberian Orchestra's first CD. Talk about diversity! Rock and Roll from the 80's, rock and roll from the 70's, and Heavy metal and orchestra mixed Christmas music.

Yep, when Trans-Siberian Orchestra is not making Christmas music, they are a heavy metal band....can't remember if they have a different name when they play heavy metal or not. Some of the Christmas music is traditional, some is stuff they have written to express feelings and thoughts of the season. I highly recommend their first CD. It is excellent, even if not your usual cup of tea.

yes I love Christmas music. I buy a few new CDs every year. I have about 10 to 15 CDs and about 10 cassettes that I inherited with the house. I like most of the old carols and some of the newer stuff. The only thing I don't like are some of the Country artists Christmas music, they always seem to change to much of the melody to suit what they consider is their own personal style. I call all the newer artists clones because they really have no personal style, they all sound alike and they all look alike.

do you sing along with your music? I do...I can even carry a tune. Singing also makes me physically and mentally feel better. There are several songs that remind me of my deceased husband and that he liked that cause me to tear up...but for the most part I like to sing cause it makes me feel good.

And how is your Friday? Here's hoping it is a good one.

Thursday, November 20, 2003

It started out being a good day and went downhill rapidly from 8:30 on.
My 11 year old daughter is having some problems in school... needless to say all the school officials and I agreed that she needed to be tested as ADHD and Dyslexia run in the family(19 y/o daughter is severely dyslexic and 13 y/o son severely ADHD). At the time of the initial meeting my impression of both of her teachers was not very favorable

To put it bluntly, I was on the defensive the minute they came in the room. Normally I do not go with my first gut reactions, knowing that everyone has a facade and sometimes that tends to get in the way. Danielle has also told me about some of the things these two ladies do in class and I'm not happy hearing that they resort to public humiliation as a tool to get children to do as they ask. All public humiliation does is alienate the person whose behavior you want to change. They also discuss students in the hearing of other students, another no-no.

These two women have stricter standards than they have at the Middle school and the high school. Can not turn in assignments early, more than 2 hours of homework at night and on Fridays. They expect these 11 and 12 year olds to act like little adults. They expect organization and responsibility to be the watchwords. Organization and responsibility have to be taught, you are born with these engraved into you DNA.

One of these teachers offers absolutely no positive feedback to the child what-so-ever. Nothing my daughter does is ever good enough for this woman. Because of that my 11 year old who used to love school and want to be there every day now tells me she doesn't feel good and doesn't want to go to school because she just remembered something that she didn't finish. This is my "Happy" child who is always in a good mood and never has a bad thing to say about anything. Now all I hear is how this teacher has made fun of another child in class and that she said that something that my daughter did was not "good enough" with no other explanation.
Now, you and I both know that positive reinforcement works; even with adults. When you make someone feel good about something they have done, they will usually work harder to get more of the positive feedback. Everyone likes to feel good about what they do.

And obviously this woman has not learned anything from events such as those that have happened at Columbine, Co and Jonesboro Ark, and all of the other schools across the country. The problems of these children did not start with just other children. They were perpetuated by the adults that did not care enough to put a stop to the acts of the other children or other adults. The bullying, teasing, humiliating, and name calling of children by other children starts in Kindergarten and if adults don't actively put a stop to it then it only gets worse. The children being picked on are being alienated and don't go to the adults for help with the situation because from past experience the adults don't do anything about it, because they did "see or hear" it. The longer it goes on the, the more the child is alienated from the rest of the kids and the more withdrawn they become. Eventually they become resentful and when they feel they can take no more abuse they do something violent to themselves or others. No one has put a stop to the abuse so they feel they have to. Now, it is really bad when some one in an authorative position practices the same types of abuse on a child. If a child has this problem with the other kids in school, how do you think the other kids are going to react when they see a teacher doing this? Think about it. Kids are not dumb. They pick up on what the adults do. This is a viscous circle that adults are allowing and I have yet to see any adults connect the dots and figure out that they are just as much to blame as the child or the child's parents. Just kills me how blind people are to the reality of these situations.
My youngest child has a problem staying on task and focused and the teacher seems to want to punish her for that. Not mention of the fact that my daughter is trying the best her 11 year old self can do, just that it is not good enough.
I have been trying to give this teacher benefit of the doubt, but several other things have happened that have just made me livid. It's very hard not to let my daughter see all this and possibly influence the way she acts towards this teacher.
Needless to say I have arranged a meeting with the principal for the week following the Thanksgiving holidays. We'll see what happens then.
Now for:

3 for Thursday

If you could do ANYTHING you wanted (let's say you had magical powers or something)...
1. What would be the first 3 things you'd do for other people?
First I would get rid of all disease and illness in the world...People would only die from old age, natural disasters or accidents. Those are things I would like to do something about but that would really upset the natural order of things.
Second every terrorist and dictator would be boiled slowly in a vat of oil.
Thirdly, while I am being omnipotent, lets give everyone a little more money.

2. What would be the first 3 things you'd do for yourself?
1. Make myself financially independent
2. Make myself about ten years younger and still know what I know now.
3. Give myself a business so that I could be happy with my job.

3. What would be the first 3 things you'd do to your enemies
This is the really hard one. I really don't have any enemies( contrary to the rant above).
unless you include the people mentioned in #2 of question one above; and they are not really enemies to me directly but to my way of life and my beliefs. I don't want to be "judge, jury, and executioner" with anyone's fate in my hands. God will sort them out and I think I'll leave that to him.

Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Holiday Sweets-- What is your favorite holiday sweet? You know, the one you only really can get your hands on once a year?
Chocolate covered cherries

Twosome: Recipe-- ...and can you get the recipe for it? ...or is this one of those closely guarded family secrets handed down mother to daughter. ...and hey? What about us guys? How are we ever supposed to figure out how to do this stuff? ...or should we even try ?
I don't make them, I buy them. I wouldn't want to make them. My kitchen would be an even bigger disaster than normal. And I don't believe that we have any closely guarded family secret recipes. The only one I can remember that I have ever asked for was my mom's fruit cake and she lost the recipe so I never got it.
Yes, guys, just follow the recipe. It's kinda like building an engine. But make sure you read it or you will have a disaster on your hands, not mention pissing off the woman of the house.

Threesome: Exchange-- But if you do have that recipe and you can bear to share, why not stop over at the exchange and drop it off? Barring that: do you routinely exchange sweets at holiday time? Yeah? What kinds?
Cookies, snack mix and candy. Occasionally I will make a cake and give it with a good cake plate as a gift. Or a plate of cookies.

Well, that's about it for my Thursday. I hope yours have been better than mine and if not, tomorrow is another day.

Till then.

Monday, November 17, 2003

Monday Madness

Well the holiday season is fast approaching and that means shopping, decorating and baking! Have fun!
1. Have you started your Christmas shopping yet? If not, when will you be starting?

Nope, not yet, I usually have to wait till the money gets in which means at the last minute.
I pick up some things a little at a time the weeks before, but major stuff has to wait, sometimes till the night before.

2. What are your favorite holiday goodies (baked goods, etc.)?

Cookies, any kind, and pumpkin pie, and left over turkey sandwiches.

3. Do you decorate for Christmas? Inside, outside or both? When will you be putting your decorations up?
Decorations go when we decide to do it. And when I can get my oldest son motivated to help. He's taller than I am so he gets to do the stuff on the eaves outside. The lights go up some time after Thanksgiving. The tree used to wait until about the 15th, but now it goes up when ever I can go down to the tree farm and get it. We really have no set schedule.
Year before last I had to throw away my musical lights cause they had just gotten to old...Guess what found some more this year and I'll be buying some next week and they will go outside to annoy and amaze the neighbors. The new lights I bought for the tree year before last have no blue bulbs so I am buying new ones for the tree that have some blue in them(if I can find the multifunction ones) the others will go outside on the bushes.
Hopefully I will have enough extension cords to do what I want to do.
Not sure what I am going to put up where inside. I have a formal living room with no furniture in it at the moment, the tree could go in there in front of the window, but we are very rarely in there due to lack of furniture. Everything is in the den, so I am not sure what I am going to do yet. Will have to wait and see.

Friday, November 14, 2003

No Friday Five today

I don't care much for the Friday five today, so I think I 'll skip it

There is not going on in my neck of the woods other that cleaning up in the attic. What a dusty chore, altho I have found some neat things and some things that go back to the 1900's. Very interesting stuff to be sure. I am planning another foray up there with the shop vac to try and reduce the copious amounts of dust covering everything.

Hope I survive the Dust Bowl of 2003 in the attic. However, if you spot a whirling dust dervish, it'll probably be me.

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Now it's time for the Thursday Threesome and 3 for Thursday.

First the Thursday Threesome

Onesome: Envision-- How much television do you watch each week? Are you one of those who can you call up the nightly program schedules for the major networks (and a cable channel or two) in your head? ...or do you have to search the paper to find out when the Thanksgiving Day parade is? (Hint: It's on a Thursday.)
I have shows I watch and basically know what time and day they are on. When the kids are home, they keep the TV on but when it's just me I favor the radio.

Twosome: whirled-- Oh, my! That holiday stuff is coming up soon! Are you ready for Thanksgiving? ...or are you going to be whirling around at the last minute?

Thanksgiving? Is that this month? I will probably buy the Turkey and ham the Friday before so Mr. Turkey can thaw by the next Wed. night when he is stuffed and put in the oven. Will make cake and pies the Tues. before and buy everything else that Wed. when everything is on sale.

Threesome: peas-- Shine on the the healthy stuff; we really don't care if you eat your vegetables (okay, the mom's here on the Porch do ): what are you looking forward to eating on Thanksgiving that you just cannot get the rest of the year?

Pumpkin pie. I love them but only think about them during Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Now for 3 for Thursday:

If you won a million dollars...

1. What are the first 3 things you'd buy?
New furniture, because I don't have very much and I have a big house to fill. A new car, then I would have one for driving the kids around and one to have fun in(new one would be a sports car) and lastly a new computer with all the bells and whistles and a T1 line.

2. What are 3 things you'd do?
First before buying anything would be to set up a trust to keep Uncle Sam's greedy paws out my money, second pay off all the bills and my car and straighten out my credit and third take a trip to Scotland, Wales and Great Britain, land of my ancestors.

3. What are 3 charities or people you'd give some of the money to? Diabetes Association, Heart association, and an animal charity of some sort.

That about does it for the Thursday 3s. Whats new in your world today?

Monday, November 10, 2003

AHHH!!don't you just love Mondays?

No, Especially if I have to get up at 4AM and drive 150 miles.

Left the house at 5 AM to get to Wichita Falls to take Phase I of the TSA's Airport Screening Assessment. Got there at 7:15 for an 8:30 test. Got to start at 8:05 cause I was the only one scheduled to take the test today. The 3 hr test took me 1 hour and 15 minutes cause I elected not to take any breaks. Was back home by 11:00.

The test was given at the Midwestern State University campus which is very nice. They were already in full swing to getting Christmas Decorations up( just a tad early for me altho I have started humming some Christmas carols. The kids would shoot me if I started to sing them this early.)

Now I can't tell you what the test consists of but I can say that it is pretty much the same as the one I took in Mar of 2002 in Los Angeles.

Got word via E-mail that I had passed the test and set up Phase II. The nearest date they are scheduling is 16, 17, and 18 Dec. So I go 18 Dec. to do all the other stuff involved.
Also had to download about 20 pages of forms that have to be filled out between now and then.

Also, for those of you who know me personally, don't be surprised if you get a friendly phone call or visit asking about me. It's all part of the back ground check. Please feel free to talk about me behind my back, I won't mind.

When I got back we also worked on cleaning out some more of the garage. When I inherited this house we had to clean out the office, all the closest and built in dressers. That's all done now so all that is left is to clean out the garage and both sides of the attic.

We have found lots of old items in excellent shape that I guess I am going to have to research and see about selling on E-bay. Lots of old books and magazines. Old Pictures that I will be giving to my other SIL to look thru. Any of that stuff that has to do with my husband I will let her decide if she wants to keep, and if she doesn't I'll keep them for the younger two kids.

Now for

Let's talk about food.....

1. How many 'meals a day' do you eat?Usually only two, tho sometimes on the weekends 3 small ones.

2. Do you enjoy cooking? Why or why not? I like to bake more than to plan and cook a meal.
Mainly I'm in a rut when it comes to cooking dinner, so I have been looking to find some new ways to cook things and new recipes to try, but like I said I prefer to bake which I haven't done a lot of lately.
3. Who cooks most of the meals in your home? . . . . . My oldest son and I share the duties however, when he is not here I have been letting my 13 y/o and 11 y/o try easy things.
4. Share a favorite recipe with us. How about and easy one? Cinnamon Toast. Take a slice of bread and spread with Margarine or butter( I use Country Crock cause it's low in fat and calories) Sprinkle with sugar(no fat , not many calories) and cinnamon(none of either) and maybe just a pinch of nutmeg(same as cinnamon) Stick it under the broiler till the sugar starts to get bubbly(not melted). By the time it cools enough to eat the top is slightly crunchy. Works well to sooth a savage sweet tooth attack and total calories for 2 slices is about 200 and fat grams less than 25 and if you use wheat bread the carbs aren't to bad either.

Well that's it for today, I'm kinda bushed from being up so early. Shouldn't have any trouble falling to sleep tonight

Sweet dreams till the nest time.

Saturday, November 08, 2003

Thursday Threesome on Saturday
(Iknow, I'm late again)

Onesome: Keep- What’s your favourite keepsake? Do you have something that has so much sentiment attached you’ll keep it forever? Tell us!
I have a dress that I wore to a military ball in high school...and any old locket that was given to me as a baby. I have my 2nd Class collar chevrons that went on my windbreaker and my husband's wedding band.

Twosome: The Back Porch- We’re named for Deb’s back porch, a place where people go to relax and wind down. Where’s your relax and unwind spot? The kitchen table...my entire family are "kitchen sitters" When we visit my mom that's were we all start out catching up on things....it's close to the firdge and coffee pot. After a while tho, everyone migrates to the living room and softer cushions.

Threesome: Donate! Got a cause you donate to regularly? I'm real bad about grabbing a handful of change at the light for the Shriners. Give any old furniture or appliances(which I am having trouble getting rid of this year) to the Veterans organization or Salvation Army for pick up. Would give to Goodwil but most of what I have will not fit into my Impala and I don't own a truck so they have to be able to come and get it.

The Friday Five on Saturday

1. What food do you like that most people hate?
Braunswagger. Everyone I know hates it. I like to make a sandwich of it with light Mayo, a little ketcup, and thinly sliced onions. Yeah, Yeah, I know, yuck. The only person I know who ate this was my dad so I guess that's where I got it from.

2. What food do you hate that most people love?
Squid...That's what I call EEEEWWW, yuck...NASTY!!!

3. What famous person, whom many people may find attractive, is most unappealing to you?
Who is that woman that plays Grace on "Will and Grace"? Can't stand her....Him either for

4. What famous person, whom many people may find unappealing, do you find
I'm with my SIL, I like Dennis Franz....I like most of the older more mature actors or "famous
people. The only young ones I like are Sandra Bullock and that guy from Australia that
plays in the movie "X-Men" You know the one with the black hair and Muttonchop
sideburns that has metal talons coming out of his hands? Yeah, that one...Some others are Sean Connery, Sam Elliot....Bill Pullman altho he's not that old. On the female side, I have
a hard time remembering any, just know them to see them on TV or DVDs.

5. What popular trend baffles you?
Acrylic toe nails painted with the "French" manicure. What's up with that? Is there a
A real purpose for it? I don't even think it looks all that great. I just think " Ahhh...
another Air-head with more money than brains."

I love all these type questions...So you will probably see more of them and possible not on the day that they are actually posed
Here are a few of my own that I picked up somewhere along the way.

1. Coffee, Tea or something stronger? I am a big coffee drinker, I like to try new blends and
flavored coffees. My oldest son(20 almost 21) has gotten me hooked on StarBucks Cafe
Mocha...wish I could make this stuff at home! I have recently come off of decaf and
started drink half decaf and half regular(I mix the grounds up at home) regular gives me
heartburn and decaf doesn't so I figured maybe 1/2 and 1/2 might work...So far so good.
When I want something stronger I add a little Kahlua to my coffee.

2. How about a glass of wine with your dinner? I hate wine....I think it's right up there with
squid. For an after dinner drink, other than coffee and Kahlua, I go for Grand Marnier.
Altho classified as a liquer it is actually made with Cognac. Good stuff and very smooth.

3. Chocolate or white? Milk that is. Chocolate except with fresh hot chocolate chip cookies.
or chocolate cake.

4. What's your favorite color? I really like them all, but any in the blue or green spectrum.
It would really be easier to ask which I don't like

5. Okay....which color don't you like? Pink, Puce, Chartruese, but they are good for accent in
small doses. Very small doses. Oh yeah and mauve or dusty rose.

6. Chicken or beef? Chicken or turkey...no turkey ham or beef substitutes. Chicken is easier
to cook even with out all the skin and fat and actually has flavor unlike beef which without
the fat is like a slab of cardboard. A good steak done on the grill is not bad but it is still
high in fats which I try to do without.

7. Coyote or the Roadrunner? The roadrunner of course...beep, beep.

8. Bugs or Daffy? Bugs Bunny, he's the brains of the two and quite clever and on occasion
sneakily so.

9. Romance or Adventure? Why not both? But not the mushy romance...EEEWWW. and Why
is it that people who act can not kiss quietly? Most of the time it sounds like a marathon
smacking session at the dinner table. I can't stand that. t's such bad manners and every
time I hear it when 2 people kiss I think"What, didn't you get enough to eat for dinner?"

10. Favorite authors or books? Long list here....lets see...we'll start with the techno thrillers
Tom Clancy, Clive Cussler, Dale Brown...on to Stephen King, Dean Koontz, then to....
Christina Skye, Linda Lael Miller, Anya Seton, Nora Roberts.... I bet you thought I'd say
Sandra Brown.....Nope she is too modern for me in the romance dept. Prefer my romances
to have a little historical flavor. I even like the time travel ones.

Well that's enough for now.....we'll touch on some other more serious topics later. You know, like the really interesting stuff like politics and religion....Not your cup of tea? Well stop on by anyway, I'm sure there will be plenty to laugh about and enjoy.

Till then.

Friday, November 07, 2003

Fri. 07 Nov. 03

As the blurb at top says, FUBAR, SNAFU, Malfunctioning, Kaotic, Disfunctional.....it's all here.
Thats basically how our life is. I decided to do this after reading my Sister-in-Laws blog. I really enjoy it and love the way she writes. Since I like to write, I thought I would give it a try.

Here you will find all manner of things; fact and fiction, mystery and fantasy, love, laughter and humor; but mainly my thoughts on just about everything under the sun, maybe a few recipies, antecdotes about my kids and animals, etc.

I know, I know, how boring! But it's what I know and people say thats when you write your best when it's about what you know...And since I have just moved here and have no new friends yet, I can a least tell it all on my blog. You know, like a diary or a journal. Anyway, If it bores you feel free to move on, it won't hurt my feelings, but if you find you like what is written here, please, by all means, pull up a chair in front of the fire and sit a spell. I always enjoy visitors.

Will check back later, have to pick up one of the kids.
Bye now.

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