Friday, July 27, 2007


argh! i hate computers! the fan in the desktop is not working so my regular computer is out of commission for a bit and now the laptop is having problems with the alt key & fgh keys. they are sticking for some reason and as long as i don't type my name (which begins with H) or any words that have those letters in them the lappy is fine. if i do it goes into a grand mal seizure... sigh.

so i guess the remedy to my blogging block is having the computer crash because i've been rife with ideas of blog posts since i have not had the ability to blog... i'm at the library in the relief of the air conditioning with my kids at my side begging to use the computer here because they're in as much withdrawl as i am... so i can't write anything more pithy or interesting and besides that the heat has pretty much fried my brain. dear god, send rain and cool breezes soon.

hope you all are well, if i'm not responding to your emails, leaving comments on your wonderful posts or just plain old silent here it's only because of "fg&h" :)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

blah, blah blogging

have lost the will to blog... i have been journaling a bit and reading other's blogs, but i just can't seem to pull together much of a post. i know it will come back, but until it does i seem to be stuck in meme-land and nopostville. hope you are all having a wonderful summer!

Friday, July 20, 2007

summer reading meme

found this in the achieves over at julie's blog - one hand clapping - i remember reading her blog when she mentioned a science fiction/fantasy series (outlander - by diana gabaldon) that i have been meaning to read - and as i'm headed to the library with a need of good summer reading i did a search and found this - whan to play? here's the rules:

* Bold the ones you’ve read.
* Italicize the ones you want to read.
* Leave in normal text the ones that don’t interest you.
* Put in ALL CAPS those you haven’t heard of.
* Put a couple of asterisks by the ones you recommend.

(UPDATE - I liked Julie's/Erik's suggestion of putting (++) next to the ones you've seen the movie or TV show of, so I added that too)

(UPDATE 2 - bold & italicized don't show up in bloglines, so you'll have to click through if you care to see what i've read)

1. The DaVinci Code (Dan Brown)**++
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)++
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)++
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)++
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien) **++
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien) **++
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien) **++
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)++
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A FINE BALANCE (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)++
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)**
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)** (will be seeing it soon!)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving) - one of my favorite books of all time!
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)++
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone(Rowling)**++
17. FALL ON YOUR KNEES (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)++
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)++
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)**
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)**
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)++
24. THE LOVELY BONES (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)** (can't wait to see the movie - hope they do it justice as it's one of my favorites!)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)**++
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)++
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
37. THE POWER OF ONE (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much Is True (Wally Lamb)*****
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)*****
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)*****
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)**
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. The Bible **
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)++
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)++
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)**++
50. She's Come Undone (Wally Lamb)***
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver)*** (just finished it - no one should go to africa without reading this!)
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. ENDER'S GAME (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)++
56. THE STONE ANGEL (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)++
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrey Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment(Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. FIFTH BUSINESS (Robertson Davies)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Victor Hugo)**++
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones's Diary (Helen Fielding)++
72. LOVE IN THE TIME OF CHOLERA (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)++
75. The Secret Garden(Frances Hodgson)++
76. THE SUMMER TREE (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows In Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According to Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)++
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)++
81. NOT WANTED ON THE VOYAGE (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. REBECCA (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. WIZARD'S FIRST RULE (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)++
86. Watership Down (Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. THE STONE DIARIES (Carol Shields)
89. BLINDNESS (Jose Saramago)
90. KANE AND ABEL (Jeffrey Archer)
91. IN THE SKIN OF A LION (Michael Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (William Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)++
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)++
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. ULYSSES (James Joyce)

anyone read any of these that i've missed? please if you have recommends i'd love to hear them. a couple i'd add that i just finished are 'prodigal summer' by kingsolver and water for elephants (can't remember author) - both are intense, deep stories with rich characters - loved them - and i can't say enough about the poisonwood bible - i would make it mandatory reading for every christian and especially those looking to do mission work. kingsolver always teaches me so much as i read her books - she is a master weaver and storyteller.

Monday, July 16, 2007

8 random facts meme

i just saw that i got tagged by renee for a random things meme - here are the rules:

rules to play 1. players start with 8 random facts about themselves. 2. those who are tagged should post these rules and their 8 random facts. 3. players should tag 8 other people and notify them they have been tagged. my 8 random facts:

1. i love 70/80's rock music and still grieve that i threw away all of my old albums when i was told that jesus didn't.
2. i am a reality tv junkie and very ashamed of it...
3. i love bacon. i can't figure out why it could be a binge food for me, most of those kind of foods have an emotional link and i can't figure out where this one comes from, but i know i can't make it if there isn't a recipe or a lot of people to help me eat it because i think i could eat a whole lb. of it myself (i never have, just can imagine myself doing it and how horrible i'd feel afterward...)
4. i hate small talk. having to do it exhausts me. i want intentional conversations with a purpose because i guess i don't know the rules for casual conversations that other people just seem to know so effortlessly.
5. i have always wanted matching pirate ear piercings with liam (i have no idea what they're really called, but the ring in the top of the ear - he has no interest and i'm too chicken to go and do it myself.
6. i hate the scars i have on my knees. i guess my legs grew too fast as a kid because i have three slash scars on each knee that i always assumed were stretch marks because i was fat - not because i was tall - my bean pole daughter got them this past winter and she doesn't have a stitch of fat on her. i've always been so self conscious of them because one day in the gym locker room in 3rd grade one little girl asked me what they were... they were probably red and bright back then like pink's are now - now mine are just faded white lines, but i hate them all the same. they represent a very low self image and thinking i was fat from a very early age to me.
7. i am slowly learning a larger vocabulary for emotions than i ever had before. giving voice to feelings deeper than happy, sad, mad and glad. i am anal about not allowing anyone to define my feelings with unspecific terms and will sit in silence for a moment to attempt to correctly identify the true emotion i am feeling and give it voice. the daily examen it is helping me with this.
8. i loathe cigars and cigarettes. there are lots of reasons for this that i won't go into here, but smelling them fills me with deep emotions and even some times rage.

i tag:

1. trudging
2. lisa
3. elizabeth
4. erin
5. candy
6. deb
7. martha
8. tammy jo


sleeping in my own bed - what a wonderful thing! liam and i spent the past two weeks (minus a couple of nights in a hotel and one night for me in a glorious home with my blogger gals) on a double air mattress. it actually worked out better than i dreaded it might. we had a great two weeks and i chronicled some of the highlights (and vehicle low lights) on my other blog if you care to read them there.

we are safe, relaxed but exhausted and home. brilliantly i signed pink and buck up for "entrepreneurship camp" before we left - so i have a full week of 9-4 alone! yippee! it is a good time of re-entry for them too as they loved camp and were sad to leave the friends and the fun they had there. this will be different by a long shot - but still enough activity to keep them from whinging all week. and it only cost $75/each!! god bless them!

i'm not sure about re-entry into life here as i napped most of today. i do the driving so that liam can get back to work without being as exhausted as i am, that and i am a control freak, so it's better for everyone if i drive... sigh... yes, i'll be honest here.

the house wasn't super clean before we left, neat, but not clean - so i've got loads of work to do this week to get things back in shape - plus all of the grubby dirty things we brought home from camp.... at least it's supposed to be a cooler week so that the flat won't be horrid to work in.

liam came back to a primed office space (surprise) and it was very encouraging to have his peeps (i never know what to call the people he works with) have taken initiative to encourage him.

i have far too many blog posts in my bloglines to truly catch up (and this is a thinned out blog roll - i unsubscribed from over 50 blogs before i left to make my reading more manageable... it's just when you see 25 blog posts in 2 weeks you begin to wonder what it is that anyone has the time to write about in the small space of 15 days...

i totally enjoyed life away from computer and tv - it's a wide world and i want to spend more time in it and less time with my face in front of a screen. i know the best laid plans of rodents and women will probably find me settling back into my bad habits and cheering for reality tv again soon - but i am really wanting different.

i found the most dramatic moments for me was seeing and reconnecting with my sister and liam's sister and seeing myself in them at the stages of life they are in and being so happy to not be there any more and to see the amount recovery i have behind me. i tend to forget where i have come from, and seeing them and talking with them reminded me how very far i have come. it was with great sadness that i saw the chaos and results of choices in their eyes, and that there never were the questions that asked about how to get out, move on or find some hope of recovery. maybe soon. i don't mean any of this to sound arrogant like i have arrived or figured it all out. i so haven't. but i have seen in living color in these past two weeks my past and the chaos of having little kids and the struggle to comfort one's self with food. i had been so hard on myself and my recovery before we had left, feeling like i hadn't had much to speak of - but seeing again where i had come from - and knowing with everything in me that i DON'T WANT TO GO BACK has been a great revelation that i am really grateful for.

the highlight of the trip for me was this sunday when we got to worship in the old, round wooden temple in ocean park, maine, and hear tony campolo preach again. it was so great to know my kids got to hear him too. buck loved him and asked if he was a comedian too. to his 9 year old mind that was a high compliment! on the way out he saw my kids, asked if they were mine and kissed and hugged them - it was so beautiful. i told my kids that they might not understand who he is today, but one day they will understand that this was a man who advised presidents and challenged the church to justice and mercy. i just love him so.

hope you all had a couple of wonderful weeks, thank you again for your prayers and encouragement. i know it made us facing the hurdles we faced with better attitudes and more optimism than we would have had without them! can't wait to catch up on your blogs.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

adventures with volvo

time for the next installment of "adventures with volvo" - it is fixed, running beautifully and only cost us $146.00 - and the mechanic fixed tons of stuff that we had no idea was even not working. he was incredible! we brought baked goods to express our deep gratitude at his speediness and his thoroughness.

and the best news is that the transmission is fabulous. he removed the pan and it is clean and healthy! so many long years of driving may continue!! it was actually a cable that got stretched and kept telling the engine we were passing in the high gears. he fixed it well enough to get us far past home. we are so relieved.

i told liam that he could have charged us six times as much and i would have still been happy and relieved!

we're having a great time with family and i'm so enjoying some quality time with my niece. she's finally starting to warm up to us and is such a sweet gem.

thanks so much for your prayers and encouragment! it's been wonderful to know that we've got friends globe-wide praying for us! much love!

Monday, July 09, 2007

safe & sound - part iii

hi all - thanks for your prayers and encouragement - we are safe and enjoying camp. the car went in today to a great transmission guy my brother in law has used - so hopefully we can afford him. we joked and told him he was so good that people were coming from canada to get work done. hopefully it can be road worthy by the weekend.

pink and buck are having a great time at camp and can hardly stop to acknowledge us and we love to see them running and playing and enjoying every minute.

liam and i on the other hand have a private camp lot right on the lake and we are just loving our secluded escape and time together.

thanks again for all of your prayers and support!

Friday, July 06, 2007

safe & sound - part ii

hi all, what a trip! we had a flat 15 minutes into the trip in maine, a rad leak we've had to babysit the whole trip and about 3 blocks from liam's mom's house it started making horrible noises. we feared the worst (transmission) and were gladly grateful for the $410 bill to fix the u joints. the volvo is back and running and we have just spent the night in tourist-ville where my kids have so enjoyed being kids (and not having their clingy cousins attached to their hips!) it was like having talking/whining shadows for days!

i had an amazing time with deb, erin & lynne in luxurious comfort on thursday night and it is so truly wonderful to be with kindred souls. i am honored to be friends and loved by these wonderful women. wish you were there! we have begun talk of a 2nd path in my east coast community so if you are interested please let us know as we're trying to figure out the best time to get together and how many we need to make room for.

we head for pennsylvania today - get to see my dad, sister (ugh, her husband... pray for me) and my niece who i have NEVER had quality time with yet.

we've got to hit the water park again this a.m. before we leave - love and hugs to you all!

Monday, July 02, 2007

safe and sound

we are safe and sound in ontario. i'm on my in-laws computer and we've just had 24 hours here. i am calm and serene and so at peace. my hubby on the other hand is just a bit stressed out. see about 15 minutes into maine we got a flat tire. we obviously hit something in the road because not 2 miles down from where we (liam) changed the tire there was a van doing the same thing...

we got to bangor and had lunch and hit the ll bean outlet hoping to grab a laptop case and saw that the radiator was leaking fluid... sigh... not as fixed as we had hoped. the guy at the auto parts store talked us both down and gave us good advice (which we said we would heed either way - whether to head home and get the rad replaced or if he thought we could make it. he gave us stuff told us how to babysit it and headed back out on the road.

we had an awesome time on the drive and overnight at the holiday inn express in vermont. got back on the road the next day and had more of the same. just a wonderful relaxing time together. about 3 blocks from liam's mom's house the volvo started making a grinding noise and then the center of the car started to feel really wrong and each time we stopped at a stop sign starting moving again was clearly not what "vanna" (what we called her after about the 100th time i said "go put this in the van" - so we ended up calling her vanna) wanted to do. as we pulled up their driveway i said 'well, i hope they don't mind her here because i don't think she'll ever move on her own accord again.'

i think we dropped the transmission... sigh. today being canada day means everything is closed down - so tomorrow she will be towed (god bless inlaws with auto club memberships) to the trustworthy mechanic to see if she's worth fixing.

god please let her be worth fixing. car payments aren't something we really want to think about. and we still have MILES to go before this trip is over. we know when you drive a 20 year old vehicle that things like this happen. i am just amazed that she got us all the way here. it was clear to me that spiritually we were supposed to be here. i have no doubt about it. how we get from here i have no clue. but i honestly i really don't have stress or fear about how it's all going to work itself out.

i can feel the prayers being prayed for us - thank you. we would be so grateful if they would continue. i'd really love liam to have the peace that i have been given. that would be a wonderful thing. either way the time with his family is going so well and we are just really enjoying the time together.

i'll keep you posted as i am able - take care!!