Friday, June 29, 2007

Friday Night Adventures

Whew - this has been a busy day. We drove to Austin this morning to pick up Allan's grandmother and bring her back for a visit. She's going to stay with us almost 2 weeks. It's her first visit here, and I think she's pretty excited. I KNOW she's excited about seeing her great-great-granddaughter! Hopefully we'll be able to do that early in the week. She's our first official guest (other than various teen-aged boys) in our guest room (aka Sarah's room).

Jacob finally started his job on Wednesday. He is working the conveyor belt. He picks out the seeded watermelons and packs them in boxes to be put on the trucks for shipping. His work days are from 8 a.m. until 11:00 p.m. with a 30 minute lunch break. My poor baby is sooooooooooo tired. Once he gets that first paycheck, it will all be worth it though.

Evan Almighty

Allan and I went to see "Evan Almighty" last night. It was really good - nothing objectionable - great for the whole family. I love his assistant - she always plays a great role. Lots of sight gags and funny lines. I think I liked "Bruce Almighty" better, but this one was worth the trip to the theater.

Lean Mean Thirteen

"Lean Mean Thirteen" by Janet Evanovich is the thirteenth installment of the Stephanie Plum adventures. It was as funny as ever. Grandma was in fine form, Morelli and Ranger were both looking for Stephanie's attention same as always, Lula is a scream. There are exploding rodents, stun gun accidents, and burning buildings. A great read, perfect for summer !

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Mid-Week Activities

We drove down to Progresso, Mexico yesterday for lunch. We ate at our regular place, and picked up some Advantage for the dogs. It's nice being so close to the border, because it makes for a nice outing when things

in town are too boring to face. This is the mighty Rio Grande River, from the exact border between the nations (Mexico to the left, Texas to the right). This is the Progresso market. There were not many people this day, but more cars than usual. You can get any kind of dental work done on these blocks, hair braids, prescription-free medications, leather goods, pottery, and loads of junk as well.
This is the inside of one of the bigger stores. Thankfully the stores usually have a/c. It was blazing hot this day.

Sarah and the baby are doing great.
Jacob started his job (finally) at 9 a.m., and thinks he'll work until 11. I bet I didn't pack enough food for such a long day. Can't wait to find out what he's been doing. One thing for sure - he'll be tired!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Same Kind of Different as Me

Here's a shocker: "Same Kind of Different as Me" by Ron Hall & Denver Moore is a NON-fiction book - yes, I've read a non-fiction book:) A friend from church gave us this book to read, and it is an amazing story. It is the story of 2 men - a homeless black man from the cotton fields of Louisiana and a well-to-do art dealer - and the art dealers wife. This is the story of how these three people came together at a homeless shelter, and how God worked in their lives. It alternates between the two men's voices, telling how they grew up, and how they came to meet at the mission. It all happens in Fort Worth, TX, which happens to be where we are from. It was neat because we recognized all the places, and Ron Hall actually graduated from our high school. This was an inspiring story, and well worth the time spent reading it.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Jessa Update

We drove down south yesterday afternoon to visit Sarah and Jessa. Sarah is doing amazing - she's in a little pain, but doing really well. She had quite an ordeal having this precious girl.They wanted a completely natural birth with no doctors, only mid-wives. She labored hard and long trying to give birth, and transferred to the hospital after many hours. Finally, at 1:09 a.m. on Sunday, they had a c-section. All went very smoothly, and everyone at the hospital I encountered was wonderful.She should get to come home today (maybe) or tomorrow (more likely.) Jessa is just so good natured so far, eating OK, and just as sweet as can be.
It was awesome to hold her, and hear her sweet little sounds that she makes. He new uncle thinks that she is scared of him because she fussed while he was holding her. I told him it was him who was scared of her, and she could tell! He'll get over that.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

Jessa's Big Day

Jessa finally made her arrival this morning between midnight and 1:30 a.m. Just a quick dash of the details before church. I've had 3 hours sleep since Thurday.
9 pounds 4.1 ounces; length at this point unknown; 30 hours labor; c-section; looks just like her momma did! Will see her again this afternoon and take some pics in person rather than behind the glass.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Step On A Crack

I finished "Step on a Crack" by James Patterson earlier in the week. This book introduces a new character, Mike Bennett, a NYC police detective. This story explored both sides of the character: his personal life, and his professional life. On the personal side, very touching...loving husband and dad to 10 adopted kids. On the professional side, he is called to negotiate with someone who has taken 34 famous people hostage in St. Patrick's Cathedral at the funeral of the former first lady. Also has 2 really interesting characters: his Grandfather, and a new au pair. Really a good read, I hope he writes more books with these characters.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

That Was Then . . .This Is Now

How the time flies. You are looking at the two best boys on the planet. Safely home from camp. They didn't fall off the mountain, and had a blast.

They plan on returning next summer as paid staff. There could have been some practical jokes played while they were gone. These two are like two peas in a pod.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Friday, and No Baby Yet

Here it is, Friday night, and we still have no granddaughter:( We're trying to be patient...trying to keep ahead of all our work/chores so that if we have to head south, we'll have no worries here at home.

We had our friend Katie and her family over last night for dinner. Served grilled steaks, brats, and mahi mahi; peel and eat shrimp; rosemary new potatoes; tomato-mozzarella-basil tomato salad; and my made-up strawberry cake. Everything was delicious (Allan is the grilling KING!). Katie's new baby, Seth, is an angel.

I had a question about Wednesday's post from Jennifer about fried pickles. These are easy to make at home, so I thought I'd share my recipe. It is from the only good cooking magazine (in my opinion) - Taste of Home. The August/September 2004 issue to be exact.

Fried Dill Pickle Coins

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
2 eggs
1 cup milk
3 cups thin dill pickle slices, drained
Oil for frying
Ranch salad dressing for dipping

In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, salt, and pepper.
In another bowl, beat eggs and milk.
Blot pickles with paper towel to remove moisture.
Coat pickles with flour mixture, then dip in egg mixture.
Coat again with flour mixture.
Fry pickles about 10 at a time for 3 minutes or until golden brown, turning once.
Drain on paper towels.
Serve with Ranch dressing.

Tomorrow we'll have our small scale garage sale to try to get rid of the last of our big things from the garage (especially that monster grill guard which didn't fit Jacob's truck - please someone want that!). I'm more concerned with people taking things away than with the $$$.

I looked at books at Wal-Mart yesterday, and boy are there some good ones out right now that I can't wait to get to take on vacation. New ones by Catherine Coulter, James Patterson, John Sandford, Lee Child and soon Janet Evanovich. I'll be totally worthless as far as chores are concerned!

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Mid-Week Update

This has been a busy, but productive, week so far. Sunday was a great afternoon - nap and all. We enjoyed lazing around with nothing to do. Monday, we discovered that our friends from CA, Katie and her family, had arrived at 3 a.m. after dropping her son Paeton off at Scout camp with Jacob. We went to meet our new Godson, Seth. He is an angel. So cute. He smiled:) We went back to visit later that evening and took a dip in the pool. That day, I began my garage purge. Was very proud of my progress. Allan liked the idea, so yesterday afternoon, he decided to get involved, and now our garage is purged! We filled the dumpster, and have a pile in the middle for an impromptu garage sale on Saturday. I am listing items on ebay as I come to them (eliminates stuff AND boxes!) We had a small group Bible study last night. Folks were talking about a burger place in town (Big House Burgers) that we hadn't been to *gasp* and all were shocked by that. So we went there for dinner. They have fried pickles (our favorite) YUM says it all. Over at They Grew in My Heart, Jennifer posted a great list of Christian ways to ease stress. Check it out! Everything was really good. I have gotten no emergency call from camp, so I'm assuming that Jacob hasn't fallen off the mountain. Always a good thing. We still aren't's really hard waiting.

Act of Treason

"Act of Treason" by Vince Flynn is great. Awesome. 5 stars. Absolutely loved this book. Mitch Rapp is the character he writes about. He is a CIA agent. It is election time, and the presidential/vice-presidential candidates are on the campaign trail. A terrorist is hired to kill them with a car bomb. Mitch's assignment is to find the bomber, and who hired him. Flynn's books are always outstanding. Can't put them down. Mitch Rapp is a great character, as is the CIA director, Irene Kennedy. Only one of these books have been hard for me to get into...the pages keep flying on all the others. After two duds that I've had to quit reading in the last few weeks - this was a joy. Sorry that it's over.

Saturday, June 9, 2007

Update - Already

For some crazy reason, I just looked at the web site for the Scout Camp Jacob is going to. I found this picture, with this caption - After a week of training, the Scouts’ Climbing Merit Badge experience will culminate at “Graduation Rock.” Wow - not too sure I like the idea of that being Jacob about to hop off the top of that rock. (However, I think he'll love it, but boy - I'm a little nervous now!)

Also forgot to mention that I'm reading a totally awesome book! I'm thrilled, because I've been very frustrated the last few weeks with my reading material. I started an Iris Johansen book that was a reprint of an early romance novel. Quit 1/3 of the way through - not a big romance novel fan. Then started an early Alex Cross/James Patterson book - big mistake - do not like his early Cross books at all - way too much awful violence - ick - made it 12 chapters (about 25 pages :) and quit. This one I'm reading now 'rocks.'

Where Did the Week Go?

What a week! We finished VBS on Thursday. Had an awesome time, though not as many kids as in previous years. I'm not sure what that's all about... Jacob didn't get to start his job after all - we had rain on Tuesday, and the fields have been too wet to harvest. Apparently, if you can't harvest, there are no melons to stack :) He is off for a week at scout camp in the Davis Mountains. He is meeting up with his best friend, Paeton, there. They are our friends who live in CA and are coming for the summer to visit Katie's folks. Can't wait to see them, and meet little Seth. Our daughter, Sarah, had a Dr.'s appointment today, and nothing much is happening with the baby - maybe another week :( It is so, so, SO, SO HOT here. Thursday, I think it was 105 or something. Just going back and forth to the garage to do laundry has about killed me. I hate, HATE, HATE hot weather. (Once Katie gets here, we can go have pool time at her parents', and that will be awesome!) Tomorrow will be our first Sunday with a free afternoon in 7 YEARS. I'm not sure exactly what we'll do?

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

It Seems Like It Was Only Yesterday

It seems like it was only yesterday that I was chasing this darling boy around the farm - trying to clean his face. When I close my eyes, and think of him, this is the face I see. But when I open my eyes, I see this very handsome young man standing before me. A young man who begins his very first job on Thursday. Where has the time gone? He is thrilled to have found a job for the summer, especially since he has weeks here and there where he is committed to other things and he will be out of town. He is going to be a watermelon stacker. So when you buy that melon, think of him. Because he's tall, he'll be stacking them on the top shelf. In the watermelon shed. Where it's hot and there are lots of skeeters. I might, just maybe, be a little proud of him. :)

Monday, June 4, 2007

Scrap Happy Week 7

For this weeks scrapbook page, I used my new digital scrapbooking program - Creative Keepsakes Scrapbook Design. I am trying out an idea to make scrapbook pages out of all my photos and put them together in a slide show. Then, I'll make a DVD and give it to our parents for Christmas so they can see our year. Time will tell how it plays out. This page is from my February pictures, and shows some Eagle Scout things that we went to. You can see other, more professional pages by going to So Much to Say, So Little Time.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Vacation Bible School

We had our first night of VBS tonight. You can look here for some pics. I'll be adding pictures as the week progresses, so check back for updates. We're doing "Avalanche Ranch" by Group. This is a great company, and always has a good VBS program. We had a small turnout tonight, but I'm hoping it will pick up tomorrow. I love the mountain decoration. Can you believe this was trash?? All the paper was taken off the walls at our local primary school the last day of school, and magically transformed into mountains and sky. (There's even sky stuffed into the burlap bags!) As usual, we had probably 2 volunteers for each kid. Everything went great, and I can't wait until tomorrow.

Friday, June 1, 2007

Shrek 3

We went to see Shrek 3 this afternoon. It was good, and I have a feeling that like the others, every time you see it you see something you missed the time before. It wasn't as good as I was expecting, because Jacob loved it - said he laughed all through it. I loved Mr. Merlin's shoes :) Absolutely worth the 2 $3 tickets.

Going Into the Weekend

Jacob is home from the river. We were expecting to pick him up in the morning, but they arrived around 6:00. I am always so glad to see him when he's been away. He had a blast, lots of tubing, hiking, and looking at girls dancing. He's now convinced he needs to learn to dance. I thought I'd post a few pictures of baby Jessa's room that I took on Tuesday. Sarah and Joey did a great job on it! If you look closely, you can see the fabric book I made her on the bookcase, and her afghan on the crib. I can't wait until she's here to enjoy her lovely room.
I did some more spring cleaning today - finished going through and cleaning the last of the kitchen cabinets. Threw out another trash bag of clutter! Also got 6 items listed on ebay (3 have bids already!).