Monday, April 30, 2007

Handbag Tag

Well, I have been busy today cutting out, baking, and icing about 200 cookies....I would post a picture, but they all just have the first color on them. Details will be added tomorrow, and I'll post pictures then for you to see.

In the meantime...

My buddy Lisa over at The Preacher's Wife tagged me for this handbag reveal. You really want to get to know someone? Go through their purse! So, since I really needed to clean out my purse, I'm playing along!

Here is my purse!



I told you I was a baseball fan! Now I had one picked out last fall for football season, but money was tight, and I just couldn't justify it. Maybe this year...

(And yes, I use this purse ALL THE TIME. Even to church! I did switch it out for a wedding once, but otherwise, this is my purse for better or worse. It's actually broken and the strap comes unbuckled all the time, but I love it too much to let it go!!!)

And here is what actually belongs in my purse!



top row: my Bare Escentuals Mineral Veil travel compact, my list of what I am and am not allowed to eat -- it's two pages people, and I can't always remember when I'm out! A package of batteries, because we always seem to need them when we are in the car for game-boys, or two-way radios, or the remote control for the VCR (boy do we sound spoiled!), the two rolls of dimes I keep for unexpected rewards for the kids when they do good stuff. The idea is that they get dimes when they obey without questioning, or help someone without being asked, or other such things, and then they put them in a bank to save up for a new Playstation 3...they have a LONG way to go to get that new Playstation! My PDA, which happens to be a Dell Axim, because my computer runs Windows XP Media Edition and Palm is not compatible, so I have to have a PDA that runs Windows Mobile. (I'm saving up for a Smart Phone -- then I can blog from ANYWHERE!)

second row: My meds -- the smaller bottle is the Vicodin which I take for pain and must ALWAYS have with me. (I had an attack once while driving, and it is impossible to drive in that kind of pain.) The bigger bottle is my regular stuff I have to take 4 times a day to keep my kidneys functioning at some semblance of normal. My checkbook is next and the embossing that you can't see is the MLB logo. If I had opened it up for the picture, you would have found Houston Astros checks inside! (BIG fan, I'm telling you!) My purple ballpoint pen, 'cause it's my signature color. Next is my wallet, which matches the purse...I may not match my purse to my outfit or to the occasion, but my wallet and my purse DO match, oh yes ma'am they do! My Sally Hansen Hand Therapy for extremely dry skin. I wash my hands A LOT, and I need intense moisture!

bottom row: And finally, my little purple sewing kit -- just in case!

After I snapped the picture, I remembered the outside pocket of my purse. I took another picture that included my "plumping" lip gloss in a lovely rosy/mauve shade and my silver business card case which happens to be empty because I gave them all out when I delivered a cake to a Rehab Clinic with a full waiting room of people who apparently LOVE cake! I did snap another picture, but apparently I turned off the camera before it processed the picture and committed it to memory, because it just isn't there!

And now, for all the things that were in the purse that didn't belong there!



Okay, that pile on the left is a bunch of receipts. There always seems to be someone behind me in the line who is in a HUGE hurry and starts moving up in the line before I can put the receipt in my wallet, so I just shove them in my purse. And just FYI I found only one in the pile that I actually needed to keep! The pile at the top is made up of coupons which I never use for the most part. I just forget I have them! There was one bubble gum wrapper, and one flyer from M's ballet class there on the right. There was also a toy car, and Sponge Bob playing cards that I took away from one of the kids at one time. The broken ear piece to my glasses that Lenscrafters couldn't fix. One old battery that I replaced with one from that package you saw earlier! The tea-light candle was part of a visual aid for one of the lessons in the Bible Study I told you about here And an empty bottle of my all-time favorite lotion "Palmer's Cocoa Butter". It smells like chocolate, and although I can't eat any these days, I can still smell it!

Now here's an interesting little twist for you...I found a hole in the inside pocket of my purse, and these items had found their way through that hole and into the lining of my purse!



That is my old cell-phone that the speaker went out on, so I let D play with it until he started chewing the buttons right off the thing. My pedometer which needs a new battery, but it is not readily available at the Wal-Marts or the H.E.B. (THE grocery store of Central Texas ya'll), so I carry it in my purse just in case I happen to be over by the battery store...yes, there is a store up the road that sells nothing but batteries of all shapes, sizes, and voltage. A penny, a cough drop, and my extra tube of mascara just in case I need a touch up.

So, there you have it. Thanks Lisa for the tag...this was fun, and now I have a nice CLEAN purse!

If anyone else wants to play, consider yourself tagged!

Sunday, April 29, 2007

In Which I Completely PANIC!

Oh, my friends, I am literally sick to my stomach. I can hardly breathe. My worst cake related fear has happened, well--my second worst fear. I got a call today that sent me into a complete panic attack. I was hired to do a wedding cake for someone this coming June, and back in March, she sent me an email asking if I could do her wedding shower cakes as well. I agreed without knowing dates. It turned out that when she sent me the confirmation of what she wanted, she only included one shower date, and let me know that her sister would contact me with the details. The date she gave me was May 5th.

I had already agreed to do another wedding on that day, but figured that as long as I could deliver the cake for the shower the day before, all would be well...

So, last week I was emailing back and forth with the sister finalizing details and she happened to mention that she could either get the cake early on Saturday before my other wedding delivery, or on Sunday after church. WHAT??? The shower is on Sunday? Well, there's no problem then. There is no conflict with the wedding! I mentioned that I had originally been told the shower was on a Saturday, and she confirmed that it was, in fact, on Sunday. What we never talked about was WHICH SUNDAY!

Guess what phone call I got today? "WHERE IS OUR CAKE???" It was one hour before the shower, and there was no way for me to even bake the cake, much less decorate it! Now, I know it wasn't my fault. I know there was no way for me to know. I even went back and looked at every email we had sent back and forth and the only date ever mentioned was May 5th, (thank goodness I still have all those emails!) but I am still sick over the whole thing. It turns out she does have a shower next Saturday, but that isn't the one they wanted the cake for.

I immediately sent an email to both the bride and her sister with a copy of the original email with the date of May 5th on it, and let them know how sick I was over the whole thing and offered to make the cake for next Saturday's shower if they wanted me to. I am now anxiously awaiting a response. HOPING and PRAYING that it will consist of "No, we aren't mad at you. It was my mistake. And we'd love for you to do the cake next weekend." But I am completely nervous and literally sick to my stomach over the whole thing. The only thing I can imagine that would be worse would be to have messed up the actual wedding rather than just the shower.

Ya'll please pray that they won't hold this against me. Pray that they will realize there was no way for me to know the date was this weekend. Pray that they aren't angry with me. (I really don't like people to be angry with me.) And please pray that I can sleep tonight. I'm afraid that I'm going to dream of messing up next week's orders all week long and I'll be a total basket case...or more of one than I already am! I just wish one of them would call or email and let me know what they are thinking. I had a mentor tell me once that 94% of all fears never come to pass. I'm holding on to that, but I'm still really nervous about the whole thing.

((((SIGH))))

Saturday, April 28, 2007

In which I shamelessly brag on my boys...or at least their teams!

So, it has been quite a while since I have posted the results of any of the boys' games. That would be because I've had SOOO many more interesting things to post about...NOT! It would actually be because lately both teams have been STINKING IT UP!!!

After the initial 3 game "Practice Tournament" in which b's baseball team won EVERY! SINGLE! GAME!, they then turned around and began the regular season with FIVE! STRAIGHT! LOSSES! Then, two weeks ago, there was a Mid-Season Tournament, and they WON! EVERY! SINGLE! GAME! and took the Championship for their division. They had a week off from baseball, and returned to the regular season games by LOSING! BIG!

However, after a serious "Come to Jesus Meeting", they have now WON! TWO! GAMES! IN! A! ROW! and it's not even a tournament!!! b has had a couple of good hits...something that had been sorely lacking. AND he has been making some outs playing 2nd base and even shortstop today! He got a double-play this week by catching a pop-fly and then throwing out the guy trying to run back to first base! Can you say, PROUD! MOMMA!???

And here is the boy stealing home on a wild pitch.



J's soccer team won their first game right out of the box, and then lost EVERY! SINGLE! GAME! with the exception of one tie...UNTIL! TODAY! Today, they won...7-2! J didn't have a whole lot to do with the win...he just wasn't in the "soccer zone" today, but they won, so it was a good sports day all around at our house today.

And here he is in the game...he's the one standing by the referee, watching...not the one actually RUNNING TO THE BALL!



And because I know you have all been wondering...here is my man. He is taking a break from coaching 3rd base while the other team changes pitchers....again. I snapped the shot just before he spit out a sunflower seed! You can see that I married him for his rugged good looks...oh, and his legs! Woohoo!



And just because I find it to be one of the sweetest pictures EVER...my first and last born watching my second born play soccer.



Have I mentioned that I am a sports FREAK, and I HATE! TO! LOSE! I have absolutely zero athletic ability, but I LOVE! SPORTS! and I am just slightly competitive...with other people's talent that is! And on that note, MY! SPURS! WON! TONIGHT!!!

Now at our house, if there is a sporting event playing on the tv, aside from Indy Car Racing, I would be the one who turned it on. B (notice the lower case b for little b, and the capital B for daddy...clever, no?) will watch sports with me on occasion, but will not be the one to turn them on, and if I leave the room to, say, fix his dinner, or switch the laundry over, he WILL change the channel. He does willingly watch Longhorn football with me, and NASCAR, but the rest would never see the tv in our house if I didn't turn them on. However, I don't generally watch basketball. I will watch almost anyone play football, and I follow at least 6-8 Major and Minor League baseball teams. I keep up with 3 or 4 tennis players, but I only watch basketball twice a year. I watch March Madness when the Longhorns are in it, and I watch the Spurs in the playoffs. I do LOVE my Spurs. I could give you a list of why, but then this post may go beyond general rambling, to so completely boring, that you turn off your computer and go do the dishes! Anyway, it's the playoffs, and I holed up in my bedroom and watched them beat up on the Nuggets tonight in complete happiness.

On one final, completely unrelated note. I have a word of advice that you MUST heed. NEVER, NEVER, NEVER, begin a Karen Kingsbury novel when you have an unfinished "To Do List"! Once you get to a certain point in her books, there is just no putting it down! On a positive note, I did read about 200 pages today, and was able to finish the book so that it won't interfere with what promises to be my busiest cake and cookie week EVER. I got absolutely NOTHING done on my list today, but now I'm free to work next week without the temptation of a Karen Kingsbury book staring at me! I'm not even going to the library until this week is over...it is just NOT a good idea!

So, as I said, I have a busy week with cakes and cookies, so I may not be back to post for awhile. I'll definitely be in and out with pictures for you though. How sad is it that what may be my last post in awhile was complete rambling? Oh yeah, that's what ALL my posts are...okay, we're good.

Friday, April 27, 2007

There's Got to be a Post in Here, SOMEWHERE!

In our house, "mischief" is spelled with a capital "D". In fact, J was doing a reading comprehension lesson the other day and had to ask me how to pronounce the word "mischievous" and what it meant. I offered a definition peppered with "D" stories. "You know how D likes to climb in the pantry and get out stuff? And how D likes to get ahold of the food coloring and poor it out on the table, and chairs, and his hands, and feet, and clothes? And how D likes to sneak into the bathroom and eat toothpaste? And how D likes to sneak into the bathroom and use everybody else's toothbrushes? And how D likes to sneak into the bathroom and float stuff in the potty...like other people's toothbrushes? (We may never brush our teeth around here again...you just never know where your toothbrush has been! In fact, Daddy couldn't even find his this morning! Fortunately for his fellow co-workers, he had a spare in his travel kit....whew!)

D has been caught with a bowl of cookie icing in one hand and the paintbrush from said icing in his mouth. He has been caught sipping on a pastry bag full of buttercream like it was a baby bottle. And he has been found with an open package of "Kool-Aid Singles" and a huge smile on his face.

The Evidence:




And just for fun, here he is after I removed him from the scene of the crime into the kitchen sink, and given him a thorough bath! (I just love that he is still small enough to take a bath in the kitchen sink!)



I've never had to deal with anything like this with the others. The closest thing I can think of was finding M lying on the couch one Saturday morning with a lollipop in her mouth, a stash of 3 more under her blanket, and the empty wrappers of 6 others stuffed in the sofa cushions! She has issues with sugar, but she freely admits it and that's half the battle, right?

But my little D...he comes out of his room in the mornings to find me enjoying the peacefulness of a house full of sleeping children, and he is just so precious! He squeals, literally squeals "MOMMA!!!" as soon as he comes around the corner and spots me. He runs, with arms out, repeating "Momma! Momma! Momma!" until he is tucked in a snuggly little ball in my arms. He will snuggle there for all of about 30 seconds before his mantra changes from "Momma!" to "MOKE" (D-speak for "milk"). He signs and shouts "MOKE! MOKE! MOKE!" until I peel myself up from the couch and take him to the kitchen for some milk. Finally, with his milk firmly in his little, baby, toddler hands, we settle ourselves back on the couch for some quality time together watching my recorded tv shows from the night before. (We are not normally home in the evenings, so I record my shows and watch them the next morning before the rest of the world wakes up.) He has a specific spot where he likes to sit, and he will tell me "my 'pot, my 'pot" until he is comfortably situated half on the arm of the couch, half on my hip, nestled in the crook of my arm. He still has those puffy morning eyes, and serious bed-head, but he is still too young for morning breath. I breathe deeply of the smell of him, and sigh a contented sigh of happiness...

That's how we started this morning, with D snuggled in his "'pot" watching CSI (the gross parts were past, it was just investigating now...)

Five minutes later, he is up! RUNNING through the house shouting, RUN! RUN! RUN! with no particular destination, just a desire to RUN! and SCREAM! I send him off to wake the dead other kids, and try to watch the rest of my show. After a few minutes, I notice that the SCREAMING! has stopped. The RUNNING! has stopped, and silence fills the house...uh-oh...

I first check his usual haunts, but no, both bathroom doors are safely closed. I then remember that I have cookie bouquets in the kitchen awaiting delivery later today...that's when the panic hits! As I race to the kitchen to save my cookies, I almost run right past him. My cookies are still safely on the counter. My precious little boy has found a different vice. He has the flour shaker and is making flour circles on the living room carpet. Pretty harmless considering the syrup, honey, peanut butter, food coloring, etc. that he could have gotten from the pantry and decorated the carpet with!

So, I give up my tv, and I put on his absolute favorite..."Signing Time" to which the squealing begins all over again!

There are times when I am sooooo grateful for this gift of a child in my old age...and then.......there are times when I ask myself, "What was God THINKING when he gave me this child in my old age!!!"

***************************************
Oh yeah, and because I KNOW you are curious...here are the cookie bouquets safe from harm! (These weren't orders, these were for the ladies at my husband's office, and for our church secretary in honor of "Secretary's Week". Nothing like LAST MINUTE, huh?)

Thursday, April 26, 2007

In which I set aside my "To Do List" and actually write a post!

I don't normally do women's Bible Studies at church. I'm too busy with the kids and the cakes and the dishes and the laundry... Seriously, we generally have one night a week that we don't have a practice or a game, or something we have to do. Adding one more thing just never seemed like a good idea to me...until...Miss Marcy stood up in church and announced that she was starting a Bible Study on "The Book of John for Women". Now I don't really know Marcy at all. She sings on the worship team with her husband and has a beautiful voice, but that's about all I know about her. That and the fact that she is funny. (One of my most favorite traits in people!) I have been to a couple of baby showers at the church that she attended and when she spoke, she cracked the place up. So, my interest was peaked. But when she told us that as she was setting out the sign-up sheets for the Bible Study, and one of the ladies signing up told her, "I don't normally go to these things", it was her response that sealed the deal for me. She said, "Neither do I!" That was it, I was in!

However, I was still concerned about our sports schedules and such, and I didn't want it to be offensive or disruptive to her if I wasn't able to attend every session, so I sent her an email explaining that there were some nights that I would not be able to be there due to my son's baseball games, and would that be too disruptive? She immediately replied letting me know that I was welcome to whichever sessions I could attend and that she would email all the material that I missed to me, so I would have a complete notebook. She's cool isn't she? This study was obviously not about her!

Well as it turned out, the study was a six-week course and we had baseball games scheduled for 4 of those dates. However, apparently God wanted me there as well, because two of those games were postponed due to rain, and the fourth was a late game, so I was able to attend before the game! The session I did miss was on "Patience vs. Frustration". I guess God didn't think I needed that one...or maybe He can just recognize a lost cause when He sees one...LOL!

Anyway, it was a FABULOUS study, full of wisdom and creative teaching tools that I wish I could share with you in detail, but that's not really my thing. What I really wanted to share with you was what I personally took away from the whole thing. There were lots of little things, of course, but the main thing came to me on the second to the last meeting of the series. The lesson was on "Trust vs. Doubt" and the activity was called "A centerpiece of faith and trust". Basically, Marcy had purchased a bunch of different types of cut-flowers. They were all laid out on the table and there was a vase filled with water in the middle of the table. One by one, we each knelt at the table, chose a flower, cut it off to the length we wanted, and placed it into the vase. As we placed our flowers into the vase, we each made one of the following statements taken from John 17 in order:

1. We glorify Your Son.
2. You have given us eternal life.
3. You are the only true God.
4. Your work is complete.
5. Jesus, You are exalted.
6. I belong to you.
7. Every good thing comes from You.
8. I believe Your Word.
9. I am Yours.
10. You are mine.
11. I am protected by You.
12. I am safe in Jesus.
13. I receive Your joy.
14. I receive Your words.
15. I am protected from the evil one.
16. I am not of this world.
17. Your Word is truth.
18. I am sent into the world.
19. I am set apart for You.
20. Others will see and believe.
21. My oneness with You will affect the world.
22. The body of Christ is one body.
23. God loves me.
24. I will see Your glory.
25. You sent Your Son.
26. Your love lives forever in me.

Now, let me tell you, by the time we had gone through each of those 26 statements, and pruned those flower stems, (part of the lesson, you see, is the pruning) and placed them in that vase, we had quite a beautiful arrangement! It was an example of how God sees all of us together as a beautiful bouquet, and even though we need some pruning now and then, we are still part of that bouquet. Cool huh?

But here's the really cool part...the statement that fell on my turn was "You are mine". I had often thought of myself as His, but had never considered Him to be mine. I guess this was something that God really wanted me to hear, because at the end of the evening, we were each given an envelope to open with a personal message for each of us. The messages weren't anagrams of our names, but each letter of our names was highlighted throughout the message. This was significant because one of the things we had studied was about God calling us by name. Anyway, the message for me included that "I am Yours" from God to me! I am still trying to wrap my mind around that, but it is so obviously something He wants me to know, that I am going to focus on it for awhile and see what He does with it.

I really wish I had taken my camera with me so I could have posted a picture of that bouquet to share with you all. It truly was glorious!

And now, although I must return to my "To Do List", I will leave you with this thought...You are His, and He is yours! Wrap your mind around that today and let me know where it leads you!

Thanks for stopping by.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Be Careful What You Ask For...

Ever since I was a teenager, every.single.time. I prayed to God for money for one thing or another, someone would call me for a babysitting job. I never got a mysterious check in the mail, no long-lost-relative-I-didn't-know-I-had would kick the bucket and leave me money, Ed McMahon never showed up at my door...no, I would get a babysitting job.

And you know what...God is the same, yesterday, today, and forever! I was praying recently about the need for some money for some stuff, and well, you saw the three cakes He sprang on me last week here. And guess what...I just got a call from a business that I've made cakes for before, and they want a cake for...TOMORROW!

So...even though I really do have a post to share with you all...I'm off to add a cake into my schedule of school, and serious housecleaning, and possible soccer practice if the rain holds off today! Maybe I'll get to that post later, when all are in bed, safe and quiet...maybe.

Sunday, April 22, 2007

Weekend Wind-Up

Well, it has been quite the busy weekend here in cake and cookie land. I got a call on Wednesday asking for two small cakes for a birthday party for a brother and a sister. The cakes needed to be delivered on Friday. Since I didn't have any other cakes to do this week, I agreed to make the cakes even though I prefer a little more notice. The request was for a Cinderella cake for a 7 year old girl and a Batman cake for an 11 year old boy.

For the girl, I made a gumpaste/fondant carriage and sprayed it with luster dust to make it glimmer. Then I just put a Cinderella candle next to the carriage. Unfortunately, the carriage took a little longer than expected to dry, so I was running a little later than I wanted to on the delivery. Then, when I finally got it ready to attach to the cake, I opened up the Cinderella candle, and her head fell off!!! I had to go back to the store and exchange it for another one before I could deliver the cakes...ugh! It all worked out in the end, and here is the final result.




And then I made this one for her 11 year old brother. I had planned to do a 3D gumpaste thing for this one too with a little Batman figure next to it so the cakes would be similar, but all I could find was Spiderman 3 and Superman Returns figures. Apparently, it's been awhile since a new Batman movie came out, and he was not the figure of choice for most cakes right now. I finally managed to find this toy, and I incorporated it into the decoration of the cake. My 11 year old gave his seal of approval, so I guess it came out alright.




After I finally delivered these two cakes and cleaned up my mess, I was exhausted. But I had promised J. that I'd make soccer ball cookies to take to his game on Saturday 'cause it was his turn to bring the snack. I asked him if we could just go buy a snack, and I'd make the cookies for the end-of-the-season party, but he really wanted them...so I made 2 dozen of these before I went to bed!



They were a big hit! I was glad I stayed up to do them for him.


I also got an email on Thursday asking for a wedding/baseball themed cake for about 45-50 people for Saturday afternoon. Apparently a couple of season ticket holders for our local AAA Baseball team got married... or married again... I never quite got that straight. Anyway, they've been together for 22 years, and they were having a Tailgate Party/Reception before Saturday Night's game, so I came up with this!



And here is a close up of the "Happy Couple"! I used a gumpaste/fondant mixture in a push-mold to form the people. I added baseball hats, painted them with food coloring and inserted toothpicks in the legs while they were still soft so I could stick them into the cake after they hardened. The bat, mitt, and baseball were made "freehand", and attached to the cake with icing.



We had a great time at the tailgate party AND at the game. Our team blew a 5-0 lead going into the 7th inning, but our good friend David Matranga was there. (He used to be on our team, but got traded. And his new team was our opponent this weekend.) It was fun to see him and talk to him for awhile after the game. Besides being our favorite ball player, he also really helped little B. with his hitting after he tore his spleen. (Little B. had fallen 8 feet out of a tree at a picnic and tore his spleen. We spent 4 days in the hospital, another week in a wheelchair, and then another 3 weeks of limited mobility. This happened just before he was to switch from "Coach Pitch" to "Kid Pitch". Little B. had lost weight and muscle tone and was quite weak and a little nervous about standing in the batter's box and letting kids throw baseballs at him!) David worked with him once a week throughout the season to re-develop his swing and get his confidence back. We became friends and have really missed having him here on our team. David also hit the first grand slam home run that we ever saw! I made him a cake for that one!! It was soooo cool!

We got home from the game just before 11:00pm. Just in time to see the last 25 laps of the NASCAR race. I got to watch my boy, Jeff Gordon win!!! What a fabulous day!!!

Then, I got up this morning and made 23 cupcakes (I guess I over-filled them, because there just wasn't enough batter for that 24th cupcake!) I didn't take a picture because they were boring. I just did big stars all over the tops because it was the fastest way to ice them while using the least amount of icing. I usually do swirls on cupcakes, but they take a lot of icing, and I was using what was left over from the baseball/wedding cake and I didn't want to have to make up another batch! They were just to take to the picnic in the park after church, so they didn't need to be fancy, just yummy.

So, that was my weekend. And now I've got to go switch my laundry from the washer to the dryer and put in the last load for the day. Then, I'm dragging my carcass to bed and not moving until tomorrow morning!!! I'll be back when I can see straight again!

Thanks for stopping by.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Just Checking In

I know there are a couple of you out there that wonder if all is okay over here in "Crazy Land" if I don't post each day...I know because I get phone calls and emails asking if I'm okay! It's so nice to be loved...and missed :)

Nobody has said or done anything funny...sorry. I need to get after them about that!

I just thought I'd a take a second while my lunch is settling to let you know that I am alive and well. I may be having a kidney issue...whether it's a stone or something else, I don't know. It just hurts off and on. Not too badly, just enough to make me step it up on the fluid intake. The Vicodin has remained in its bottle...most of the time. The problem is that the more I drink, the more it hurts. (It's a vicious cycle, I know.) This is "normal" for me, but if it is a stone, I need to flush the sucker out. The other problem with pushing the liquids is that I spend half my day in the bathroom! Difficult at soccer practice, baseball games, etc. Annoying when I'm trying to actually, you know, SLEEP during the night! One thing bad kidneys will do is make you tired, and I could really use my sleep! So, if ya'll just want to pray that whatever the problem is will be resolved soon, I'll take those prayers!

Well next week will be cookie crazy around here, and the week after that will be cake crazy...today, I am cake AND cookie crazy! So, I'd best get back to it! I'll have some pictures to post later on, so you can just all hold your breath in eager anticipation of those!! Well, maybe just move to the edge of your seat...I've got a few more hours of work left to do and I wouldn't want you to hurt yourselves!

Thanks for stopping by...I'll be back later with pictures!

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Writer's Block

I'm having trouble thinking of anything to blog about lately. I have one post in the works, but it is a bit lengthy, and I have too much to do this week to spend much time on it, SO....I did think of one other Jonathan story for you. I actually can't believe I forgot to share this one earlier since it happened over a year ago!

We were at my niece's wedding. The wedding was held at this really cool, historic mansion just outside the city. The location of the actual ceremony was called "The Barn", but it was really a beautiful building with stained concrete floors, large rough-hewn logs were used as pillars throughout the room, the walls were limestone, and the ceiling looked like it was a thatched roof from the inside. So, we were sitting there, quietly, in the service when Jonathan starts looking around at the stone walls, the wooden pillars and the straw ceiling. He leaned over and said to me, "Mom, it looks like all three of the little pigs worked on this place!" In my great efforts to stifle my laughter, I think I emitted a snort or two which got me not a few curious looks from those around us! Oh well, we're all related now anyway!

Now, hopefully that will tie you over until I can think of something profound to write, or until I have my...um...mammogram. I'm sure I'll have plenty to write about after that!

In the meantime, I'm off to school and the cake and cookie world for the next couple of weeks. I'll check in when I can with pictures and updates, and if anything remotely funny, or, you know, humiliating happens, I'll be sure to let you know!

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah, Hallelujah....YEAH!!!

I know, I didn't post on American Idol for the past couple of weeks...too much going on, however, I must say something now...FINALLY!!!

Now, I have been careful in the past to state that each of the finalists was a better singer than I could ever hope to be, and the past couple of weeks, Sanjaya has been singing better--although not in the league of the others by any means...HOWEVER, let me state for the record that what he did last night, I COULD HAVE DONE THAT!!! Even my 11 yr. old, who has liked Sanjaya from the beginning, admitted that it was...bad. really. really. bad.

So, thank you America! Now, we can get on with crowning the REAL American Idol!!! Which at this point should be Melinda or Jordin, in my ever-so-humble opinion...

Today is the Day to Love on Heather and Her Family!

*Shamelessly copied from Boomama's site today*


Are y’all ready to spread a little love? :-)

Today we have such an incredible opportunity to minister to our sweet friend Heather and her family. If you’re not familiar with the story behind this love offering, you can click here to see all the details.

If you are familiar with the story and ready to BLESS HEATHER’S SOCKS OFF, go here and click on the little “Make A Donation” button at the bottom of the post. The minimum donation is just one dollar - but certainly you may give more if you’d like. Your transaction will be completely secure via PayPal, whether you pay with your own PayPal account, your bank account, or a major credit card. If you don’t feel led to give or aren’t able to give today, then you can still contribute by praying for Heather and her family - and I know that they will be beyond grateful for your prayers.


Boomama will be posting updates on our progress throughout the day, and don’t worry - the donation button will stay active for a couple of weeks, at least. So if you can’t contribute right this second, that is perfectly fine…you can come back by tomorrow or the next day and still have the opportunity to give.

More than anything, may God be glorified as His children come forward to lift up sweet Heather.

Thanks, y’all, for everything - and I’ll keep you posted!

Monday, April 16, 2007

The Appointment

So, I mentioned in a previous post that I had had a doctor’s appointment recently that was a little bit eventful. First of all, it was one of those annual appointments, so you already know how much I was looking forward to it! And I will try to tell the story without actually telling the story...I don't want anyone to find this blog by some weird google search!

Well, I arrived in the waiting room with my Beth Moore book in hand, quite looking forward to a short wait at least, since I was childless and would really enjoy just a few moments of uninterrupted reading time. I found myself, however, people watching more than reading for the most part. It’s just so funny (knowing what kind of doctor’s office you’re in) to try to guess who is there for what.

Obviously the ladies with the large, protruding bellies are the OB patients. You can tell the first-time mothers as they are, for the most part, young and pretty with their make-up and hair done to perfection and their maternity outfits are cute and stylish. They have looks of excited anticipation on their beautiful young faces….sigh. Then, there are those who obviously have other children at home. They come in sweats and t-shirts with their hair pulled back in ponytails, very little, if any, make-up, and their faces show that fatigue that every mother knows so well. Yet still, you can catch them lovingly rubbing their bellies and talking softly to the little prize within…contented sigh. Then there are the men…there were two of them. One, listening intently to the lady next to him, whom I would like to assume was his wife, but I am not that na├»ve, and the other…sitting alone…talking on his cell phone…in a room full of women…in a place he obviously didn’t belong. I wondered if he had arrived before his woman, or if he had arrived late and was forced to wait in the waiting room alone, or if maybe his woman just did not want him in there for the whole examination…or whatever… At any rate, he looked quite uncomfortable and understandably so.

And then there were the NON-OB patients (or so I assume). There was quite a wide-range of these. There were the blue-haired ladies who spoke REALLY! LOUDLY! about the exact nature of their visit today…ahem. Then there was the lady who appeared to be there looking for a date. She was dressed to the nines in an outfit that looked like she was leaving there and heading on over to Sixth Street for some partying…and if she found a handsome doctor to accompany her, so much the better! Finally, there was the one that I couldn’t quite figure out. I assume she was a lady…’cause she was in the..you know…ob-gyn office. But she was a VERY, VERY, BIG woman. Not fat, BIG. She was taller than my Prince Charming, and she probably had 50 pounds on him. Again, she was not fat. She looked very athletic. But she had a crew cut of sorts and wore men’s jeans with a polo-type shirt and work boots. I believe we have a women’s semi-pro football team in this town…perhaps she was a member of that team…a linebacker, no doubt.

But the fun did not stop in the waiting room, ladies...oh no it did not. . In fact the..."fun"... didn’t really begin until the nurse and the nurse-in-training took me back. First of all, they weighed me… (I was prepared, by the way, with my lightest weight jeans, a light summer top, and a pair of dress sandals that could quickly and easily be kicked off just before I had to step on that scale! And yes, my toenails were painted, my big toes were hair-free, and my feet were all nice and lotioned...LOL!) Now, the scale at this particular office has a note on it that states FOR ALL TO READ, “Scale is off. Add one-half pound to weight.” Now honestly, do they need to post that? Can’t they give us the small satisfaction of believing just for one brief moment that we weigh one-half pound less? Would it KILL them to let us have that one small nugget of hope?!?

I will state, for the record, that I was at the exact highest weight that I am allowed to be without being considered overweight. I was given a “weight-range” based on my height, age, bone-structure, etc. It was a 17 pound range. I was at the very. last. pound. on that range. On the brighter side, I had been hovering, during the past year, about 5-13 pounds ABOVE that last pound, so I was pleased. However, that end of the range is there to accommodate extra muscle mass in those people who actually, you know, workout and stuff. So, I really shouldn’t be quite so pleased since I have no extra or, you know, ANY muscle mass to speak of. It doesn’t really matter what a person weighs ladies, back fat and belly rolls are unattractive on ANY sized frame…believe me. Thank goodness for jeans, and various undergarments made with lycra…lots and lots of lycra...that’s all I have to say.

Now, after the weigh-in, we walked back to the room. Once in the room, both the nurse AND the nurse-in-training have to ask me a bazillion questions that I spent over 30 minutes answering the week before on their online questionnaire, so I wouldn’t have to do it at my appointment. And they both asked the same questions. I had to answer everything twice…well, three times if you count the online thingy. FINALLY, they get ready to leave, so the doctor can come and do the exam, and as they walk out, they mention that I need to put on the gown…opening to the front…great, just great. Except, I couldn’t find the gown…all I could find resembled more of an apron...a very thin apron...an apron you could practically see thru. Now, being on the higher end of my weight scale does not mean I am a large woman. I’m not. I’m on the smaller end of the size scale to tell you the truth, but that gown just barely went all the way around. (Now I should mention that I wasn’t seeing my regular doctor for this visit. I was seeing the Nurse Practitioner because my doctor was booked until May and I couldn’t get my prescription refilled without a visit, and I needed that refill.) So, maybe the poor Nurse Practitioners get stuck with the reject gowns…in this case a reject from the children’s ward, but a reject none-the-less. Fortunately, they did leave a sheet for me to cover up with… I just don’t think they expected it to be unfolded to it’s full length, and for me to be holding it all the way up under my chin!

So, finally the Nurse Practictioner comes in and guess what??? I had to answer all the questions...again! I could have sworn they wrote all that down in my chart 10 seconds ago! Where did that chart go??? One little interesting difference was that the Nurse Practictioner asked my age...very politely she said, "And let's see, you are 30...what?" as she was trying to do the math in her head based on my birthdate. I informed her that I was, in fact, 41 years old...information I would later wish I had kept to myself.

Well, we finished the usual exam...not pleasant...but not too painful either. THEN, I heard a sentence I never thought I'd hear as long as I never ended up in, you know, prison. We were going to do one more exam. A different type of exam. I very calmly mentioned that, well, this was...um...new. To which she replied, "Well, you've not been in your 40's before!" And THAT's when I wished I had kept my age to myself. If I hadn't just been reading in Lisa Whelchel's "Taking Care of the Me in Mommy" book about how important these exams are, I might have bolted then and there. However, armed with her encouragement that I needed to do this for my family, I stayed right there, in my see-thru apron, and prepared myself for the worst. It was actually quick, easy and a lot less uncomfortable than the regular exam...but still...ugh!

And as if THAT weren't enough, I was told I had to get a mammogram as well because now I'm, you know, in my 40's! Getting old stinks ladies, it really does!

Now, as unpleasant, though humorous, as all this was, I was given a clean bill of health with no signs of cancerous or pre-cancerous cells, and so I am happy and thankful. I haven't made that mammogram appointment yet, but I will...I promise...I will. I'm praying that Jesus comes back for His bride before my actual appointment, (can I get an AMEN?!?) but I will make the appointment. And now, here is your gentle reminder that Holy Mama's Club 17 is in two days! So, if you haven't just been in for your...um...annual exam...ahem...don't forget to do your BSE!!! And check in with Holy Mama and let her know you're OKAY!!!

My Perfect Household

*Updated: Sorry guys, I messed up when I entered the blog challenge, and I didn't link directly to this post. I just linked to my blog...DUH! So...I'm making this a "sticky post" and it will remain the top post until the challenge is over. So, if you are looking for new posts...you'll have to scroll down.

This article is my submission to the blog challenge sponsored by Art Bookbindery, "Empowering Writers to Self Publish."




This is a true statement...I promise.

Yesterday at about 12:30 or so in the afternoon. I was finishing up shining the kitchen sink. My mother had come and taken the girl to ballet class. Number one boy was busy shining everything he could find made out of stainless steel with the stainless steel polish; trash can, oven, dishwasher, toaster. Number 3 boy was in his room napping. And number 2 boy was sitting quietly on the couch reading his Bible because he had already finished the dusting.

I'm not kidding. It's true. Do you envy me? Do you think that I have a pretty great bunch of kids and a smooth-running life?

Let's rewind this picture...

It's 11:00. My mother is knocking at the door. I'm still running the vacuum over the middles of the carpet (no time to do the edges). The kids are daydreaming instead of picking up the toys, mail, books, etc. that are in the way of the vacuum. The girl is still looking for her shoes. The baby is screaming for attention. And the kitchen is a huge nightmare.

Rewind some more...

It's 10:30 and my mother is due in 30 minutes. The bathroom is still not finished being cleaned, there is JUNK all over the living room. Everything needs to be dusted and vacuumed. The kitchen sink, counters and table are filled with dirty dishes from the weekend's cake extravaganza, and the morning's breakfast. The kitchen floor is just a mite sticky in places with scattered cereal and a sippy cup or two strewn about. There are 3 trash bags in the kitchen waiting to be taken to the outside trash can. And there is a laundry basket or two with clothes waiting to be folded, as well as three with folded laundry waiting to be put away sitting on the living room floor. Oh, and let's not forget all the Easter baskets, candy, toys etc. piled on the couch waiting to find a home somewhere in this tiny, little, house.

Rewind one more time...

It's 10:00. The shrieking can be heard for miles! "COME ON GUYS!!!! I FORGOT!!! GRANDMA'S ON HER WAY OVER HERE AND THIS PLACE IS TRASHED!!!! B! CLEAN THE BATHROOM!! J! PICK UP IN THE HALLWAY!! M! GET DRESSED FOR BALLET!! D! PUT THAT DOWN!!! D!! GET OUT OF THERE!!! D!!! LEAVE THAT ALONE!!!

On second thought, let's fast forward back to 12:30. The dishes are finished. The floor has been swept and mopped. The living room has been dusted and vacuumed. The counters and table have been wiped clean. The sink has been shined. B has shined everything made of stainless steel in the house just because he wanted to make it look nice -- I didn't even ask him to. J has informed me that he was so interested in his Bible story, that he read ahead and is now 2 days ahead in his reading. The girl has just returned from ballet class with hugs and kisses for her mom. And the baby boy is still napping peacefully in his room.

You see, I could paint you two very different pictures of life in my house. Both would be accurate, but neither would tell the whole story. I thought a lot about this when I got a response to this year's Christmas letter from an old school friend. She said to me, "It sounds like you got everything you ever wanted." I thought for just one second about the house that's too small for 6 people, a school, and a bakery. I thought about car repairs needed. I considered medical bills that needed to be paid. I thought of things we'd like to buy but can't afford. Then I thought again...

This time I thought about four healthy, beautiful, children who think I'm the greatest mom ever. I thought about a husband who acknowledges (quite readily I might add) that I am not perfect while proclaiming that I am perfect for him. I thought of a house that we can afford to pay the mortgage on. I thought of the van I drive that my husband traded work to get for me so it didn't take any money out of our pockets. (The van with leather seats, front and rear AC, and a 13 inch TV with VCR installed in the ceiling.) I thought of the school books and software programs littering my kitchen where I teach my children rather than sending them off to strangers every day. I thought of the cake pans, icing tips, decorator bags, and thousands of accessories I have that allow me to be creative and make beautiful cakes and cookies for my friends while earning a little extra money on the side.

I thought of all these things and I realized that my old friend was right. All I had ever wanted to be was a wife, a mother, and a teacher with the chance to use my creative talents to make beautiful things. I have achieved all I ever wanted in life. So, let's not linger on the 10:00am to 12:30pm times in our lives. Let's instead, follow the advice of Philippians 4:8 and think only on those things that are noble and pure and true...

I do have a great bunch of kids. And I do have a great life.

GOD IS GOOD!

Friday, April 13, 2007

Nine and One Half Hours Spent Over Three Days...

And you get 6 dozen, count em, 6 dozen cookies.



And they all look like Thomas, The Tank Engine!



And now, I'm going to take something for this dreadful headache, put my feet up, watch the Spurs kick some basketball bootie, and chill until I absolutely HAVE to get up and feed the family and wash the uniforms for tomorrow's games!

Oh yeah...

and THIS is what you get when the lenses get poked out of your baby's sunglasses!! The cutest nerd on the whole street!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Prayer List Update

As you know, I keep my weekly prayer list in my sidebar. Some of the people I pray for have links and you can click on their name and get more information about what to pray for. I am moving Kelli to the TOP of the list today and adding a link to BooMama's post about the immediate danger that Miss Kelli is facing. Ya'll, this emergency happened about 2 am. Tuesday morning. Do you know what Kelli was doing on Monday morning? She was emailing ME to find out how I was feeling!!! She is my hero. We both have kidney issues, but hers are SOOO far and above more awful than mine and yet she handles hers with so much more grace and humor than I ever have. She encourages me. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE pray for Kelli. She has some immediate needs, but the bottom line is that Kelli needs a new kidney. She just does. Also please pray for her husband and kids. They are so scared right now. And you mothers know that THAT is harder to take than your own problems! I know Kelli is more worried about her family than herself.

Also, I am adding Heather from "Especially Heather" and "Swank Style" and "Praying for Emma Grace" to the list this week. She has just been diagnosed with a tumor in her brain, but she knows nothing about where it is, what it means, or what's in store for her future. She says that her husband hasn't stopped crying...doesn't that just break your heart? So, I am praying that when Heather goes back to the neurologist for her appointment they will find NOTHING! That it will be one of those "What happened? Who screwed up?? There's no tumor here!" kind of appointments. Will ya'll agree with that? Thanks ya'll.

Monday, April 9, 2007

Where I have been...

I bet you're wondering where I've been...Well, I had to make this for our Easter Dinner out at my parents' house.



And I had to make this for my friend's daughter. Her birthday fell on Easter Sunday this year, so she wanted an Easter cake.



Then, I had to make these for the same girl to take to school today to share with her class!



And now, I have to go clean up the mess I made in the kitchen and get the girl ready for ballet and make sure the boy and the man have clean uniforms for the baseball game tonight...oh yeah, and start school!

However, I will leave you with a picture of the Princess in her Easter Dress, hat and gloves...isn't she beautiful? It was a shame that she had to wear her heavy winter coat over it to church because on Saturday, a cold-front came through and the temperature dropped to 35 degrees! We had sleet falling most of the day...may I remind you that this is April...in TEXAS?!? Last week it was 87 degrees and we were in shorts and t-shirts. It might be in the 90's later this week, but for Easter, we get...ICE!!



And, here is the little guy hunting his Easter eggs in the house because it was TOO DARN COLD outside!



So, that is where I've been, and now I am heading into the kitchen to clean up, and hopefully I'll be back later to tell you all about my doctor's appointment last week...it was quite the experience let me tell you!

Wednesday, April 4, 2007

A Quick Note

I know, my weekly American Idol rundown is late...too much schoolwork to do today and we have a game tonight, which shortens the day considerably.

However, I did need to make one note here. I've been monitoring my site meter pretty regularly, and it appears that no one is finding this site by any strange or suspect google searches, so I am going to open the comments to allow for anonymous comments. I know there are some people that don't leave comments because they don't have, or want a google account. Therefore, I have opened it up on a trial basis to see how it goes. If I start getting strange comments or spam, I'll shut the anonymous comments down, but for now, feel free to leave your comments even if you don't have a google account! And, as an added protection against the spammers, I've added that obnoxious word verification thingy. Sorry for the extra step, but since I do post pictures of my kids here, I need to be careful!

Tuesday, April 3, 2007

You're NOT going to believe this one...


I've been tagged with the "Thinking Blogger Award". My bloggy friend, Tracey, over at Show Me State of Mind says my blog makes her think...I'm pretty sure that's only because you must have a few cups of coffee, or Diet Coke, in your system in order to follow the many happy trails of my mind!!! So, thank you to "Real Estate Girl", and here you go...

There are a few rules to this thing. The first of which is that we are supposed to link back to the original post that started this whole thing. The second is that we are supposed to "Pay it Forward" by tagging 5 other blogs that make us think. HOWEVER...when I actually went back and read the original post, I discovered one little phrase that says..."...if you choose to...". Now, I read about 15-20 blogs on a fairly regular basis. The ones on my sidebar are those I check at least once a day...every day! And many of them have received this award already, and rightly so I might add. A couple, surprisingly, have not. And I found myself wondering if maybe people didn't tag them because they don't feel that they "know" them well enough to tag them to do something like this. But then I read that "...if you choose to..." line and realized that they don't have to tag others if they don't want to. I can give them the award for making me think, and they may never even know it since they most likely don't read this thing anyway! So, I'm going to just let you know who makes me think and why, and if any of those people see it and haven't been tagged yet, they can "Pay it Forward", or just quietly be proud of themselves...it's totally up to them!

Okay, here we go!

Obviously Barb over at A Chelsea Morning makes me think. She has the best posts about how to clean stuff, and cook stuff, and in general be a really good wife, that I've ever read and they actually make me want to clean stuff! I even saved a copy of this post partly because it cracked me up, and partly because there are many lessons in housecleaning there, and I'm afraid that if Barb ever pulled up stakes and deleted her blog, I'd be lost...so I saved a copy to my hard drive! Now, Barb has already been tagged, so this is just an exclamation point. If I didn't mention her, I'd just be, you know, lying! And I've really tried to resist, but I just can't. Barb linked to ME in her "Sunday Meanderings" post this week!!! Can ya'll believe it? I feel so special! And let me tell you, if I had any qualms at all about sharing the secret recipe for the cookies, or posting all those videos like a total AV geek, I don't any more. Barb needed them, and that means it must have been the right thing to do, and the lightning is not going to strike me down after all! Hee-hee!

I've already told you about Lisa, The Preacher's Wife who makes me think AND laugh! She's also already been tagged...DUH!

How could I not include The LPM Blog If THAT doesn't make you think, you're brain-dead my friend...pure and simple...brain-dead.

My last two are related to dear Barb.

Sarah's In the Midst of It was the very first blog I ever read. In fact, it was the way she wrote and documented those special moments in her children's lives that made me want to start my own blog to keep track of all those little memories myself! I had read an excerpt from her blog over at Lisa Whelchel's site, and decided to check it out further. The first post I read was about the book "The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane". It was written in the form of a letter to her son, and I fell in love with both her writing and her taste in books! I immediately checked the book and the CD out from the library, and the kids and I listened to it in the van while out and about. It was FABULOUS!!! I've checked in with Sarah daily ever since, and am now very impatiently waiting on "Marley and Me" to be turned back in to the library based on the review that she gave it. So, I guess Miss Sarah not only makes me think...she also makes me READ and WRITE!!!

Finally, there is Bev over at Blessed Beyond Measure who also just happens to be Sarah's mom, and Barb's sister. Her posts just invite you in. She posts about her life in such a way that makes you think..."please, can I be your friend?" She is so open and honest and friendly, you just feel welcome. My favorite post so far has been this one. I laughed so hard I was wishing I hadn't had quite so much Diet Coke before I read it! But her "Monday Morning Musings" are quiet and thoughful and full of much wisdom. It's a great place to hang out, ya'll!

And so, that's it. I've officially completed my first meme! And don't worry Tracey, I did manage to feed the kids and the man a decent meal: meatloaf, green beans, garlic-cheddar mashed potatoes, and ice cream to be exact! I finished the dishes, and did 2 loads of laundry. Just in case you were concerned...LOL. And now, I suppose it's time to get to bed...sigh.

Sunday, April 1, 2007

My Forensic Bracelets

Okay, so I watch a little too much tv. And I probably watch a LOT more forensic shows than is really healthy. I find myself being a little nervous in parking garages, on running trails through wooded areas, in my house alone at night, and you know...pretty much anywhere these days. It never seems to deter me from frequenting these places, I'm just kinda nervous being there 'cause, you know, a psychotic serial killer may be hiding there just waiting for a short woman, badly in need of; exercise, a haircut and highlights, a manicure (or at the very least-a nail file), and a complete wardrobe overhaul. I'd be just his type.

I, of course, blame my parents. I grew up watching tv shows like: "Ellery Queen Mysteries", "Quincy, M.D.", "S.W.A.T.", "Hawaii Five-O", etc., etc., etc. And my mother was an avid Agatha Christie and Mary Higgins Clark reader. So, it is a hereditary ailment. However, I realized that it had probably gone a little far when I found myself in a mild panic one day when I realized that my watch and bracelets were still sitting on my bathroom sink, and I was already in the car driving to wherever it was I was going. I couldn't turn around to get them because I was, as usual, running late...sigh. Now, I wasn't too concerned about the watch because, well, the cell-phone has a clock and it was firmly attached to my hip. The missing watch is more of just a "gosh I feel naked" kind of a feeling. The missing bracelets however, instilled a sort of mild panic. In order to fully comprehend my particular psychosis, you must first get to know my bracelets...

The first of my two bracelets is a charm bracelet. This one was given to me on my very first Mother's Day with one charm. It was a heart with the figures of a mom and a little boy on it...sigh. Then, the next Christmas, B added a double heart charm to represent the two of us. Added through the years have been: a house--for when we bought our first house; an Alpha and Omega--from the principal of the second and last school in which I ever taught; a heart that says, "Little Sister"; a holly leaf; a musical note with an ichthus (the christian fish symbol) on it--given to me by my sister because we were both singing on the worship teams at our churches at that time; a drummer boy--because I used to play percussion in the marching band in high-school; a mega-phone--because I was a cheerleader in college (don't get too excited ya'll, it was a VERY small Bible College and all 8 of us who wanted to, got to be cheerleaders for our basketball team-the only sport played at our school); a Dr. Pepper bottle--which has lost most of it's engraving due to much wear and tear, and looks more like a baseball bat these days; the Alamo--to commemorate a trip with my mom and sisters, and my first visit there; a painter's palette-because before I did the cake thing, I did the Tole Painting thing; a box of popcorn-because before they were forever banned from my diet by the cruel, cruel doctor, my favorite snack was popcorn and M&Ms--theater butter flavor only, please; a pair of baby boy shoes that marked the birth of boy #2; and pair of baby girl shoes to mark the birth of the one and only girl, and the newer version of the original "Mom and Boy" charm to mark the birth of the third, and final boy; and FINALLY, my latest edition was a margarita charm--again given to me by my sister as it was our tradition when I went to visit her in Houston, to go to a Wayne Watson concert or a tear-jerker movie, and then go out to Chili's for fajitas and margaritas. Alas, the margaritas have been taken away as well, but at least I still have my charm!

The second of my bracelets is a photo bracelet with head-shots of each of my four beautiful children.

And here is where the story gets a little creepy and you may want to call the men in the little white coats to take me for a little, um...vacation. As I realized that I had forgotten my bracelets, there were two main thoughts racing through my brain: Thought process #1 -- Oh, I need the bracelet with the kids' pictures on it! What will happen if one of them gets separated from me, and someone finds them, but won't let me have them back because I don't have a picture with me to prove they're mine???? Nevermind the pictures in my PDA, or my wallet, after all, in the panic of looking for the lost child, I might drop my purse somewhere and lose it--I need those pictures attached to my arm!!!

And thought process #2 -- What will happen if I'm in a wreck, or have a heart-attack, or a stroke, or heaven help me, I'm attacked and left for dead by the above mentioned psychotic serial killer, and the paramedics and police are trying to help me but they can't possibly do their best job if they know nothing about me??? Without my charm bracelet, how will they know that I'm a mother of four who has a man whose heart is attached to hers, that we have a mortgage to pay, that I believe that God is the First and Last, that I have big sisters who might just miss me, that I celebrate Christmas, that I like to sing songs to Jesus, that I was in the marching band, and used to be a cheerleader (this is important 'cause the cheerleaders always get better service, ya' know!), that a Dr. Pepper just might bring me out of the coma (or that I like baseball, depending on how hard they are looking at it), that I still "Remember the Alamo", that I'm an artist of sorts, and that if I am, in fact, dying, perhaps a last meal of popcorn and a margarita would be appropriate?

You see, I have watched enough "CSI" and "Without a Trace" to know that every detail is important and you never know just what tiny little piece of information might be the thing that saves a life! I just want to make sure they have as much information as is humanly possible. I'm just saying.

So, although I know that my dementia is beginning to get a bit out of control, I now lovingly refer to my arm jewelry as "my forensic bracelets".

Now, for those of you who mentioned to me that you were concerned that I hadn't posted in a few days....aren't you sorry now that you ever said such a thing??? You should be...you really should be...