Thursday, December 31, 2009


10 years ago today......

We had just told Sam's parents we were expecting and were about to share the news with my family. That may not seem monumental but you have to understand....these were people who had given up hope of ever having grandchildren....Needless to say they were very excited!

Because I worked then (and still do now) at a place where children live, we had been frantically developing disaster plans and putting together emergency kits in case the worst scenario happened for Y2K. I even put together an emergency kit at home which Sam relentlessly taunted me about. So much so that when he brought home a box to put all of our supplies in, he sarcastically wrote on the outside, "Y2K...ONLY OPEN IN CASE OF EMERGENCY". All those hours of work and worry and then nothing happened!

I remember watching as the new millenium was celebrated around the world and then enjoyed celebrating it here complete with our 2000 light-up glasses and some awesomely huge fireworks that we shot off in my parents' front yard.
It really was a New Year's celebration I will never forget!
Leave a comment and tell me what you were doing!!

HAPPY 2010!!!!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Thursday, December 24, 2009

My Christmas Eve Present

I've been trying and trying to get Camden to learn this song for Christmas and he just wouldn't do it for me. Come to find out Sam had been working with him so he could surprise me. Just couldn't resist sharing it!! Merry Christmas friends!!

Monday, December 21, 2009


but I don't know what to do about it!! When Camden had the chance to ask Santa for something he said, "Just surprise me." When I asked Camden to expound on his wishes he said, "Santa knows what I want." Um...I have news for Camden...NO he doesn't!! Why do I have a feeling that Camden has an inkling of who Santa really is and is testing "him"??

On another note....the first night we went to see Santa the line was too long because it was pet night (of course it was pet night when I go....they gravitate toward me no matter where I am). Anyway Camden stood on the upper level trying desperately to get Santa's attention by alternately singing Santa Claus is coming to town (the Bruce Springsteen version) and yelling, "SANTA". It was too cute for words.

Thursday, December 10, 2009


We've had three fun snow days but now it's time to get back to it! :-( The kids did great being cooped up for so long and we really just had an enjoyable time!! Sad it has to end. Even though there is too much of it, the snow really does make everything look Christmassy. It especially makes all the lights on the houses sparkle and I have to say our street rocks this year!! I wish everyone would leave their lights up until spring. That might help get me through the darkness of winter.

Now Camden and I are off to Wichita for the funeral of a dear uncle and Claremarie and Sam will stay here and hold down the fort (CM has too many social engagements to travel with us!). Hope you all have a great weekend!!

Saturday, December 5, 2009


As I've discussed here and here before, the kids' career aspirations have not always been...uh well....inspired. There is some news to report however.

Camden has decided he wants to be a cheft. Yes, that's right. Cheft with a t on the end of it. Trying not to be the "wet blanket" mom, I haven't yet pointed out that in order to be a cheft, one probably has to eat more than just grilled cheese, bananas, applesauce, and chicken nuggets. I did tell him that he would need to taste all of the food he prepares and he said, "Oh no mom. I will have a taster."

(On a related note...when I showed him the picture, from the paper, of the new culinary school they just opened in Omaha, and told him he could go there to learn how to cook he said, "I don't need to go there. I learned everything I need to know about cooking from Grandma Park.")

Not such good news to report for my sweet daughter however. I asked her for an update on her career aspirations and she said, "I don't know what I want to be when I grow up but I do know that I'm going to have 10 dogs." Apparently she is going to be THAT person. :-)

At least she doesn't want to have 10 cats right? Who says I'm not an optimist??

Tuesday, November 24, 2009


Sunday night Sam put up our Christmas lights. We turned them on to check them and Camden was so excited. He ran around and around and said, "I love them...They are so pretty...Mom, I think I'm going to cry....I love this house so much...I hope I can live here forever!!" It was such a genuine, heartfelt statement from him. He is so happy and content here. To him this house represents safety, and love, and....HOME!

Content...a word that has eluded me lately regarding this house. I would love to move however, my new house sits on the corner of 156th and Dodge and looks suspiciously like a church/school. This house is small. It is hard to entertain here due to the set up. It is not as nice as many of our friends' houses. Many times I have avoided having people over because I'm worried what they might think. Our basement (which was finished) is still recovering from the hurnadocane we had in 2008. We are small house people who go to a church where most are big house people.

None of these things should matter!! So many people would be overjoyed to live here. I know that!!! I also know that Sam is a good provider for us and when I feel/think like this I dishonor him and all of his hard work. Some people in this world live in one-room houses that are smaller than our entryway. I know this!!! I also know that God has blessed us beyond measure so.....

As Thanksgiving approaches, you will find me working on my attitude, having been inspired by my son's example of contentedness and the wisdom he unknowingly displayed by understanding that a home is more than the square feet or the value attached to it.

Praying......I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength. Philippians 4:11-13

Monday, November 23, 2009


I'll admit it...I keep up on celebrity news and gossip. People is a guilty pleasure (anything to get through the work-out). You'll often catch me laughing at their shenanigans or shaking my head in displeasure over their idiocy or political views. But this guy???
Totally remember when he came on the scene in Thelma and Louise.....

Loved him in the Ocean movies.....

But I don't care how rich you are or how much charity work you do....beads in the beard....NEVER a good idea!!!

Monday, November 16, 2009


On the 12th anniversary of my 29th birthday I was hoping to come up with some words of wisdom I could share, not in a condescending way but rather in a helpful, "I've been there done that" way. I mean this getting older business should benefit someone right??

However, instead of the list I had hoped there would be, there is really only one thing I can think of to share. It has proved very helpful to me in numerous situations.

Are you ready??

Always, always, always check to make sure there is toilet paper in the stall before you sit down!!

Hey, don't laugh....that's good advice!!

Here's to spending next year growing in wisdom!!

Saturday, November 14, 2009


Per this little guy, it's "hug your mom" day.
Who knew?? :-)

Thursday, November 12, 2009


First let me say I do not watch this show. I've actually heard it is pretty bad. However, this commercial totally describes the kind of day it's been around here.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


I know, I know....Thanksgiving is the next holiday and I can assure you that I'm not forgetting it or downplaying it. Just really feeling the need to focus on the season of Hope (without the change)!!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009


Camden Camden Bo Bamden

Banana nana fo Famden

Me Mi Mo Mamden.....Camden

In our car, the Name Game is his favorite song to sing. You can bet that if you ever cross our path you will be sung about on one of our many drives.

Camden got his first note from a girl this week. He says it is not a love note just a note from a friend (he took the words right out of my mouth). She is in his preschool class and actually lives right behind us. She made him two of the cutest little pictures I've ever seen. (That's her in the picture.)

This week we went to the pumpkin patch with his preschool class. What a fun afternoon!!

He always listens to music as he is drifting off to sleep. Right now he is listening to a cd with older songs on it. His favorite is Dry Bones (the ankle bone's connected to the leg bone.....). I think he must really ponder the words of the songs because the other day he asked me the following, "You know that song that I listen to that says He washed my sins away?" I said yes. He says, "Well, how exactly did He do that?" This led to quite a conversation, some of which I'm not sure he understood. The good news is that I was able to connect my explanation to the way we give him consequences for bad behavior. I knew he would understand that as he has been getting A LOT of consequences lately!!!

Not sure how one little human being can be such a mixture of contradictions......sweet and cuddly one minute, sassy and naughty the next. One thing is for sure.....he is our Camden and we love him!! (I snapped this picture because it reminded me of how he used to sleep when he was a baby, with his little arms over his head.)

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Have you ever had a morning at church where you just couldn't get focused??

The friend I usually sit by (when Sam is working) was gone today so I knew I would have to find someone else to latch onto. I decide to sit in one of the weird "5 seat" rows that we have at our church and I move right to the middle seat just hoping that other friends who I know usually sit in this area, would show up and join me. They didn't....

As we begin singing two young people (I'm going to be pretty vague here although I don't know these people and don't think any of my blog readers know them either.) sit in the two seats to my right. We are in the middle of the first song and instantly one of the person's hands is in my face. I have no problem with how someone else worships during our singing but it was just kind of distracting for me. Totally my problem. After 5 songs we sit down for the sermon. I'm doing my best to focus and then it begins. First was the humongous, I think a good 32 ounce, travel coffee mug with a flip-top lid that evidently has to be clicked shut and then re-popped open between every drink. Then came the slurping during the prayer. I know, I know coffee is hot and we are a modern church who welcomes all coffee drinkers!! Next was the chewing of the fingernails. Have you ever noticed how when some people chew their nails it makes a loud clicking noise? That was this. All I could sit there and think of was how many H1N1 (we've been calling it the high-knee flu around here as H1N1 is so cumbersome to say) germs could possibly be under those nails. Just when I finished praying that this person would be protected from all of the cultures they were ingesting, out came the anti-bacterial, fruit-scented, hand lotion. Surely that would stop the nail biting......Nope!! I should also mention that through all these noisy events there has been constant touching of the face and running of fingers through the hair. (I was thinking maybe some OCD was involved here but now my professional diagnosis is fidgetor.)

If church would have been over at this point I might not have felt the need to blog this story. Here's how it ends.....

So the next big event, again during a prayer, was knuckle cracking. I almost giggled at this turn of events. However, the cherry on the big old church sundae today, was the back rub given during the closing reflection and prayer. (No I wasn't looking during the prayer but couldn't help but notice during reflection time.) Gotta love that "right in the middle of the worship service" pda!!

No worries though....I still managed to write down a full page of notes, understand the point of the sermon and find the humor in the situation. Next week however, I'm back to my usual focused self and my assigned seat!!!!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009


It's only October 6th. It's rainy, cold and gray.


Saturday, October 3, 2009


So tonight I was walking around the neighborhood and saw this little boy that had climbed up into a tree. Evidently it was the first time he had ever done that as his dad was very excited and was calling for the mom to come out and look. Trying to be friendly to strangers, which is not natural for me, I said, "You better grab the camera." Well as most times when I try to be funny, it just doesn't translate. The dad said, "My son is up in the tree." At the time I thought to myself, "Well of course he is. That's why I said to go and get the camera." That seemed to be a weird response to someone who was just trying to share in his son's tree triumph. The more I thought about it, as I finished my walk, I realized that he thought that I meant he was staring at me and that he should take a picture. It lasts longer!! Do you really think that's what he thought? That would mean that he thinks I think that I'm all that and a bag of chips. How embarrassing!!! The moral of the story.....Don't talk to strangers.


Last weekend Claremarie got to attend her first Husker football game. Unfortunately, Grandma Park suffered a work comp injury, while she was babysitting here and it was bad enough to keep her from using her ticket. She kindly offered Claremarie her ticket. It was a fun night and now she will always remember that her 1st game was the 300th sellout. That's pretty cool!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


We know the show is actually about 5th graders but around here we have entered the world of homework this year. YIKES!! It has been a long time since I've done homework (13 years to be exact and that was just grad school-nothing like 4th grade!!).

Claremarie is an awesome kid. She is sweet, thoughtful, helpful, funny..... However, when it comes to homework, she is easily distracted and doesn't really pay too much attention to what she is doing. I suppose it is because she is so highly intelligent this 4th grade drivel doesn't really interest her. Seriously though, it is highly frustrating. I'm losing hair quicker than a middle-aged man.

This really is our first year to experience homework. Before she has always been able to get her work done at school. But now, every night, we sit at the table and many times, one or both of us wind up in tears. Half the time I'm not even sure what the teacher is asking for and for some reason Claremarie can't explain it to me. One night I helped her with a paper and the next night she came home and said she got several of the questions wrong. What?? Please don't tell me that I, as the mom, am already obsolete as of 4th grade!!! If that's the case the next 9 years are going to be long and dreary!!

Sam and I are very frustrated because we were good students and school came easily for us. Not sure this is going to be the case for Claremarie. You may wonder exactly how bad she is doing....she is....well, just average. She isn't the smartest kid in her class (and she really doesn't care-now that is a foreign concept for both Sam and I) and she isn't the least smartest kid in her class. She seems to be one of those kids who is just content with getting by. She is not internally motivated and she doesn't thrive on the competition with the other kids. Have I done something to make her like that? Is this something I can live with for the rest of her educational career?

When it comes right down to it, is this about Claremarie or about me? Who is her "averageness" really hurting? I'm the one worrying about how this all reflects back on me and wondering what other people think of her and me. I'm finding it hard to even share this issue on the blog. is an ugly word and something I am definitely struggling with in this area. Struggling so hard that sometimes I find myself taking it out on Claremarie. That absolutely CAN NOT continue.

So, if you are looking for me in the next 9 years, I'll be the hairless mom, sitting at the kitchen table, swallowing my pride, pursing my lips to keep my mouth shut, and hoping and praying that the answers are in the back of the book!!!


Evie is doing great!! It's definitely a miracle!! I won't tell her story for her but keep checking her blog for updates. What a great testimony to the One who is the Great Physician!!

Friday, September 18, 2009


My heart is heavy today thinking of a friend who is facing something very difficult. For the complete story please check out her blog Long story short she is going into the hospital to deliver her precious baby today, a baby that the doctors have said will probably not survive delivery. Please stand with me in praying to the God of impossibilities that despite the odds, Evie will survive. And if God does choose to take Evie home, then please pray for Lindsey and her family. Thanks friends.

Monday, September 7, 2009


Then followed that beautiful season...
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.
-- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


Monday, August 24, 2009


How do you entertain a five year old, who is desperately missing his big sister, and who still has two weeks left before his preschool starts?? You let him watch Charlie bit my finger, the remix, from YouTube over and over!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

10 reasons why.....

Don't get me wrong. We loved most of the things about our trip to Disney however after visiting both Disney and Adventureland within 2 months of each other I feel qualified to make the following declaration.


10. Even though neither the seniors running the rides at Adventureland nor the people running the rides at Disney seem happy in their jobs, at least the seniors occasionally will give you a smile.
9. At Adventureland you can bend over to tie your shoes laces without the fear of being trampled by thousands of crazed Mickey fans, many of whom are driving motorized carts and pushing strollers.

8. You don't have to take out a second mortgage to buy a meal at Adventureland.

7. After feeding your kids frozen lemonade and soft pretzels for 3 days at Disney (due to huge crowds at all the real food stands), they don't even ask to have either at Adventureland. In fact, I believe I saw a look of terror cross their faces when we passed the frozen lemonade stand.

6. At Adventureland the longest line we stood in was 10 minutes. At Disney World it was 2 hours.

5. At Disney World walking was like swimming upstream. (It reminded me of when my parents and I were at the Mall of America the day it opened....with 1 million other people!) At Adventureland we didn't have to worry about rubbing up against and sweating on strangers all day. We could actually move freely about. Even wave our arms if we wanted to!!

4. At Adventureland we could actually get a picture taken with a character. (Never mind that it was a mangy dog.)

3. Disney World 96 degrees, 100% humidity. Adventureland 80 degrees, 100% humidity.

2. At Adventureland I didn't have to worry about Sam getting into any fights with Europeans who, at Disney, were constantly cutting in the front of every line.

And the number one difference why Adventureland is better than Disney World.......
About $3,000 big ones!!

Tuesday, August 11, 2009


Today we were driving home from our afternoon's activity. I was kind of spacing off thinking about what I was going to cook for dinner and thinking about calling Sam. We came up to a stoplight and I had to push on the brakes a little harder than usual to stop in time. It was not a big deal, I was just going a little faster than I thought. I didn't think anything of it and continued daydreaming. Meanwhile the car in front of me pulled up a little and I pulled up a little too. They did it again and I (totally subconsciously) did it again too. That's when I saw it. A little birdie waving to me from the lady's hand in the little white car in front of me. WHAT? Sometimes you receive the three finger salute because of something you know you have done but when it comes unexpected as this was, I found it SHOCKING. (Claremarie said, "Look mommy she's giving you the peace sign." Not sure why she thinks that but very thankful I didn't have to explain it to her!) Being the recovering people pleaser that I am I really just wanted to chase after her and ask her why she was so upset with me. For two obvious reasons I didn't but I will probably be obsessing about it all night wondering why!!

Sunday, August 9, 2009


Do you remember that scene in Steel Magnolias where M'Lynn (Sally Field) says it was her highest honor to be there when her daughter was born and it was her highest honor to be there when she died? Well, that didn't happen to me (thank goodness) but an experience I had tonight reminded me of that scene.

We stopped in to see my Grandma tonight. Last weekend was her big 90th birthday celebration/family reunion. It was a busy time with so many people around complete with the fire alarms going off in the nursing home when the candles were lighted. (Yes there were 90 and no we didn't think that was cruel. It is called FUN people!!) We just wanted to check in and see if she had recuperated from the big event. We got there about 7:45 pm and she was already in bed. (Seriously?! Don't even get me started on that!) I asked her if she was recovered from the party and she said, "I could go for another one! That was fun!" Too cute.

Get to the point you say....OK. As we were talking to Grandma she untucked herself so she could hold our hands and such, so as we were leaving I gave her a quick kiss on the cheek and as the last one left in the room I told her I would tuck her back in. (I know her children have done this but I never have.) It was just such an odd experience that I'm not sure how to even describe it. (If I were a real writer I would develop this thought into some deep life application. Oh well....) Here I am, the granddaughter that was tucked in lovingly, many times by her grandmother, now having the privilege of gently tucking her in. So awesome that I get to do this for her and yet so bittersweet.......

Thursday, July 30, 2009


In honor of Camden's 5th birthday (as of 7:46am), here are his latest funnies......

As we were discussing his birth this morning he said, "I bet your tummy was really big when I was in there. I sure can imagine how that must of felt." No son you really can't!!

As I was trying to get him bed the other night, at 10pm he said, "When I have kids I'm never going to make them go to bed." Get back to me on that one when you have kids and are counting down the minutes until bedtime!!

As we were walking through the toy aisle in the store the other day and he asked if I would buy him something and I said no he said, "Please mom, I'm seduced by the fun." First of all good usage of the word and secondly where did you learn that word?

As we were finishing up supper last night, "Can I have some more food? I'm like Shaggy and Scooby. My tummy is never full." And so it begins.

As he was examining the billfold that Grandma and Grandpa brought him from TN and seeing there was a dollar in it, "I'm going to buy me a wife with that!" Probably going to take a lot more than a dollar!!

Happy Birthday Sweetie!! Thanks for making us laugh!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009


The last three hours of my time have been spent making frosting, coloring it, and decorating a Spiderman cake for Camden's birthday tomorrow. I'm by no means an expert cake decorator but I enjoy making cakes for my kids. This cake turned out reasonably well and I finished it before midnight so end of story right??
After I decorate my cakes I put them in the oven (if I'm not going to be using it!). That way they don't dry out and I don't have to cover them with anything. I told Sam that I was putting it in there and he said, "That's definitely the safest place for a cake in this house." I believe that was a sarcastic comment on my refusal to cook much during the summer. Oh who am I kidding....I don't cook too much anytime!! Anyway, I tucked the cake all safe and sound in the oven, thinking about how excited Camden would be to see it in the morning, and then moved onto my next task. Sam and I were discussing the fact that Camden asked if he could have cake for breakfast. Usually we let our kids eat cake the morning of their birthday. (Judge if you want to but birthdays only come once a year!!) We both agreed that it would be nice for him to have some cake for breakfast, however, that meant I had to mix up cupcakes because this cake is for his party. So, you can probably see where this story is going, I turn the oven on to preheat and begin mixing up the cupcakes not even remembering that barely 5 minutes earlier I put the cake in the oven. (Sam also didn't realize what was happening since he made no move to stop me.) When the timer dinged to tell me the oven was heated, a switch went off in my brain, "NO!!" I started screaming for Sam (he had gone to bed). He thought I cut off my finger (because so often you use a knife when baking cupcakes). I retrieved the cake and surveyed the damage. The frosting got pretty hard because most of the shortening melted out of it. It is definitely not perfect but it is salvageable for looks. It probably will not be edible but I just don't have time to bake and decorate another one so if you come to Camden's party, take a picture of the cake but if I were you I would eat a cupcake.
(Before on the left. After on the right.)

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


This morning as Camden was eating breakfast, he stood up on the chair and said, "I have an announcement. Since it is so close to my birthday how about we just say I am 5." We laughed at him and his dramatics and jokingly said no, no, no. Behind the laughs as I turned away, tears quickly filled my eyes and my heart screamed NO. He doesn't understand how every year older he gets means that it is that much harder for me to pull him on my lap and cuddle with him. He doesn't understand that this is his last year before school, the last year that I will have him mostly to myself before I hand him over to other people who will lead him through most of his waking hours. He doesn't understand that with every birthday he gets closer to the time when he leaves his mom for another woman who will fill his heart.

I absolutely lose it every time I watch the scene in Father of the Bride where Steve Martin is playing basketball with his daughter and in one shot she is big and then in the next shot she is little. When Camden made his big announcement this morning, in my mind's eye I actually had the reverse experience. (I really did....I'm not just saying that for dramatic blogging....It was weird!) I pictured him growing up into the man I hope he will one day become. I could actually see him sitting at our table as a teen and as an adult. It took me a few blinks and shakes of my head to remember that for now he is still mine to love and cuddle and nurture.

For once reality was much better than the dream!!

Friday, July 17, 2009


Grilling, bike riding, smores, an outdoor movie and kids in the tent outside and mom in her own bed!! That's my kind of camping!
Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Thursday, July 16, 2009


Vague unease, unclear goals and unidentified passions have been the themes with me this summer. Haven't been able to pinpoint the causes other than discontentment with the way the country is headed politically and lack of any idea of where the 2nd half of my life will take me. Doesn't exactly make for good blogging......

Will be back soon......I hope!!

(Not to fear....the kids are having a great summer though!!)

Friday, July 3, 2009

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Sorry families everywhere but the best dad/father lives Park Place!!
Hey, he even has a balloon to prove it!!

Monday, June 15, 2009


Happy 18th anniversary Sam.

In a time when people call commitment old-fashioned and prudish and in a time when vows taken before God are dismissed as quickly as yesterday's newspaper, I treasure our marriage.

There are days when this journey is hard and not very much fun but always, we do it together.

There are days when the sun shines and all seems right with the world and always, we do it together.

Thanks for the commitment you have made to me and to our family.

Always and together,

Saturday, June 13, 2009


We are afraid that Camden has officially been brainwashed by the mouse! Tonight at supper we were discussing the fact that he had to miss his baseball game today. I jokingly said that today would have probably been the day that he hit his first home run. Claremarie sarcastically said, "yeah right." And then Camden said, "You never know...dreams do come true."
De-programming commences now!!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009


Dinner with Shamu.

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Monday, June 8, 2009


The end of a very long day.

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Sunday, June 7, 2009


7 days of park tickets and all they want to do is swim and play on the hammock.
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Getting ready to enjoy her last day as an 8 year old.
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Saturday, June 6, 2009

"The beach is awesome"

The above a quote from Claremarie as she experiencing the ocean for the first time.

Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

Friday, June 5, 2009

Thursday, June 4, 2009


Everything is pretty much packed and the kids are wired with excitement. Doing my best to keep the expectations realistic while not "raining on their parade" so to speak. We have tried to give some basic guidelines such as: please don't kick the chair in front of you on the airplane, we will be doing A LOT of standing in line, you are going to get very hot and your feet will get very tired, no we aren't going to swim with manatees, yes we will get to see Mickey (and these are just Sam's questions :-). Both kids are very excited about flying and seeing the ocean for the first time, not to mention their week with the mouse. This is our first "real" vacation with the kids so we will see how it goes. I'm just praying that the whining will be minimal and that we will have an enjoyable week together as a family. Sam had an ankle/leg injury last weekend so hopefully it will hold up during all our travels. Claremarie's birthday is Monday so we have some special plans for that.

Be back soon with pictures......

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


Since the first post about this was such a hit, here is a pic of the fully bloomed clematis. Actually I just wanted to practice posting from my phone before vacation. But, isn't it pretty? I do not have a green thumb and we are overrun with rabbits around here, so I am excited when anything blooms in my yard!
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Friday, May 29, 2009


Let's hash this out once and for all. How much is too much to pay for a hair cut? My stylist is great (I think-please don't judge her by the way I style my hair.). I have been with her for 9 years and have moved with her 3 times. When I started going to her I was pregnant with Claremarie. We have gone through 4 pregnancies together and several miscarriages (hers). We have shared losses with each other as well. She knows my kids and husband and we are even friends on facebook and my space. We also share the same faith. As far as hair goes, she cares about what I want and never lets me leave the salon looking bad. I appreciate that because recently when she was on maternity leave I was sent out of the salon looking like a wreck! My hair is also very thin so she does certain cutting techniques with it to maximize the minimal!

When I started with her I think I paid $28.00 for a cut and style. Yes, I pay for the style even though I know I could do it myself. Now it is up to....I almost hate to say how much.....$50.00, not counting the tip. That is a killer. Since I have a short, very style specific hair cut I have to get it done every 4-5 weeks to keep it looking right and I can't just walk into great clips to get it trimmed. It needs texturizing!!

I understand that hair cutting is a craft and one that she has mastered quite well and I believe with every fiber of my being that people should be rewarded for their skill but it sure would be nice if there were some kind of grandfather clause!

So, am I paying too much (remember, this isn't a one length do that gets trimmed once a year) or is it worth it for everything I mentioned above? Does anyone out there pay almost as much? I'll ask one more time...How much is too much?

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Tonight I was going to blog about how disturbed I am about all that is going on in the world and the idiocy that is constantly on display.....Nah, too depressing and dreary.

Then I was going to blog about how much work it is to pack for my small family, for a week long trip and how the mom has to do all the work.....Nah, I'll be thankful that I have a family to pack for and that we get to take a vacation this year.
I thought about blogging about the musical WICKED (we saw it last night), but most people I know have seen it or are going to see it so that would be repetitious now wouldn't it?

So how about this. I don't have a lot of plants in my landscaping that bloom but today seeing these beautiful flowers just made me happy. (They made my neighbor happy too. I made her come look at them. She now officially thinks I have completely lost it!!)

I love the deep, rich color of this clematis. (I know this picture isn't stellar.) Sam helped me rig it up so it is finally climbing. Isn't it beauteous? Notice all the buds so it will only get more beautiful, provided we don't have a bad storm or that Camden doesn't pour gasoline on it.
And, of course you can always count on the peony to brighten your day. Their sweet smell and cheerful (yes, I think they are cheerful don't you?) blooms are wonderful (yes I know they have a lot of ants on them but ants are God's creatures too and as long as they are on the peony they aren't in your I right or am I right?). You really can't kill peonies either. I know because I've chopped them off and mowed them, yet still they live!!

NO!! I am not heavily medicated right now (just in case you were wondering).

Monday, May 25, 2009


When I was growing up Memorial Day wasn't about a barbecue or going to the lake. It was always about honoring those who are no longer with us. My family made the tour to the different cemeteries where loved ones are buried and placed flowers on their graves. We learned early on how to show our respect in these sacred places by walking near the headstones and by being quiet. We also learned a lot about history by reading the engravings on the stones of both the young and the old and by the stories my parents told of uncles who fought in the wars and of a great grandmother who had died during the flu epidemic. During the different memorial day services, we would hear the speakers and the prayers. We would see the men with their veteran's hats on, haltingly and often times limping, lay the wreath on the unknown soldiers grave. We would hear the mournful sound of taps being played out across the quiet hillsides and then we would hear the shocking sound of the gun salute break that silence.
My brother (as well as an uncle, an aunt, and a cousin) is buried at Fort McPherson, which is a national cemetery at Maxwell, NE. We stopped to place some flowers on his grave and as I looked out over the rows and rows of white tombstones, I thought back to these times and realized that these services and rituals were where I began to develop my love for this country and also where I came to learn about the sacrifice so many have made for us. My children asked the same questions that I always asked when I was young and now they are learning the same lessons I did.

It is so important to teach our children what this day really means. It only takes an hour or two to attend a Memorial Day service. Not much of a sacrifice when you stop to consider what so many individuals and families have given up for each of us. There is not a better history lesson to be found!! I promise the barbecue and lake will still be there when you are done.