Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Praying for Obama

Just realized it's Tuesday!

Lord, I pray for President-elect Obama. I ask, Lord, for Your influence in his life, for him to truly turn his heart towards You, to seek YOUR will for our country. Thank you for being all knowing, and all powerful. In Jesus' Name.

I am Elizabeth Bennet!

Take the Quiz here!

I knew it! I get the guy! :) Yippee!!! Oh yeah, I'm married with children already. Oh, well.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Praying for the President-elect

Daja had this idea straight from God, and I decided to join with her in praying for our President-elect.

So, I'll join Daja in praying that a strong, Godly black man comes along side him to guide him. My own prayer is that he reconsiders reinstating UNFPA. I don't understand why we should fund abortions in America, much less in China (for instance), where abortions are forced on mothers who have already had a child.

As Daja said, feel free to use the picture above, and join us in praying fervently for President-elect Obama.


Monday, November 17, 2008

I can't believe it's Monday already. The weekends don't have that much kick when you are a stay-at-home mom. That is my title now, since I work so infrequently that I can't really count it. I've wanted this since before my kids were born, but this is the first time it's happened, and not because we were planning it, per se. And thus, the financial problems. Oh, well.

I am trying to get the grocery bill down, and it sure is helps that gasoline is $2.39 today, versus over $4.00 a few weeks ago. I joined The Grocery Game recently. I had used it years ago, and cut our grocery bill to about $40 per week. I stopped because we had no more room for the stockpile!!! I use it differently now, but it is helping a little bit.

The Prince and I are heading to Disneyland on Wednesday, because it's The Happiest Place on Earth, and that's where I need to be! We bought the tickets a long time ago, and they are expiring soon. I get to go twice, this time with The Prince, then with The Princess in a couple weeks. We had to buy four tickets, but The Gearhead doesn't like Disneyland (sick puppy that he is).

Blessings to you!

Friday, November 14, 2008

The one where I lose my mind

Are ya sick to death of the word "Texas" yet? I AM! So, I'm going to think about it tomorrow, 'k?

Pictures, that's what I need!

The kids have been participating in a public speaking class with our homeschool co-op. They were not happy about it, but The Gearhead and I insisted. This is how the table looked at my friend's house, whose kids were partnered with mine for the second assignment, which was a debate.

"D" and The Princess were working for 8 hour stretches at times to learn all they could about the topic of the debate. They had to learn both sides, and be able to argue both. "D's" mom and I probably put as much work into it as the kids did. We felt quite overwhelmed at times, but figured everyone else felt the same way. We found out that they certainly did. The kids did great (especially these two).


This is our piano. Well, truth be told, it's my in-laws piano. It was given to my husband's grandmother when she was a teenager, and the tuner told us it was about 90 years old. It hadn't been tuned in years, and since The Prince is taking piano lessons, we decided to get it over to our house and get it tuned. See that lovely pile that the tuner (Vick) is pointing to? That, my friends is a mouse's nest. There were droppings inside the piano all over the place. Additionally, there were little paper parts that were completely gone from mice having eaten them. So, our tuning project went from about $150, to a whopping $300. Luckily, the in-laws paid. I love in-laws.

Vick was at our house for about 3-1/2 hours. I had never seen all the inner workings of a piano, so it was quite fascinating. Did you know that when they do the actual tuning, it's so repetitive and soothing that people fall asleep? Both The Prince and my mother-in-law fell asleep while he was tuning! The Princess and I weren't here, or I would have gotten pictures.

The Prince was overjoyed that he finally got to play a real piano at home. The keyboard just wasn't the same, so it's been relegated to church for Sundays only, since he can't very well cart a piano to church.

Man, are you as bored as I am, now?

The Princess and I are headed out to see my niece sing at an opera recital.

Have a blessed weekend!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

I'm a real blogger! I have a troll!! And, THE GEARHEAD SPEAKS!!! Oh yes, he does.

If you look in the comments from the last blog post, you will see this, a comment by "Anonymous":

Why Texas?? I am sick of Cali people coming here, this is a very conservative state, the last thing we need is Californians driving up home values here.

Don't mess with Texas, stay in your land of high taxes, state income taxes and gay marriage.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the term "troll" in the Internet world, a troll is one who posts inflammatory comments anonymously, as this person did. I chose to publish it, because it goes to show how narrow-minded and judgmental people can be, and I want to warn those of you who are just starting blogs (Hi Cherie!) that they are out there. You NEVER have to post anonymously, as some would have you believe. All you have to do is make a profile with Blogger, which doesn't have to have a blog attached. Also, I do have one friend who posts as "anonymous," and then signs her name in the comment, so I know it's her. This person did not do that.

I am going to answer said "Anonymous" aka "Coward," this time. But this is the last time:

Why Texas, you ask. Well, there is a laundry list of reasons. We have friends there, and we've visited a number of times in the past few years, and love it. We are very conservative, and are fish out of water here in our home state, despite living in one of the most conservative areas of the state. We plan on becoming Texans in every way if we move there. We are not white collar snobs (though not all white collar folks are snobs, in my experience). I'm not sure how moving there will drive up home values, but if you own a home there, and your home values go up, isn't that a good thing?

We voted "Yes" on Proposition 8. And it passed. Gay marriage is not legal here as of November 4, and I don't understand how our moving there has anything to do with that.

Oh, and for your information, Texas property taxes are higher than ours; so much higher than ours, they more than make up for our state tax. Your sales tax? THE SAME AS OURS (for now). Do your research, Mr. or Ms. Troll, before posting such uninformed garbage.

Blessings to you, Troll/Coward. You need all you can get.


The Gearhead speaks, y'all!!! He read the troll's comment, and had to jump in. Here ya go. Disclaimer: The thoughts and opinions of said Gearhead do not necessarily reflect the thoughts and opinions of this blogger, but they come pretty darn close.

Gearhead here. I walk into my family room to be informed by my better half that her blog received it's first troll comment. Great! I can't pass up this opportunity, either.

I have been told by more than one native-born Texan that I will fit in Texas better than they do, and my family is very welcome . I can't wait to meet one of you in some Texas diner. You will not know me, but your fat, lazy, disrespectful carcass will be easy for me to pick out of a room full of the friendly, polite folks that most Texans are. The time will come when I'll over hear some self righteous local whining about something stupid, and I will be reminded of you and this here blog, and chuckle.

Take comfort in knowing that I pray to God that I follow His will in all areas of my life including how I vote. So here it is TROLL:

#1) If your concern is that we're not conservative enough for you, relax. Texas will become more RED if we show up. I have never been stupid enough to vote to tax ourselves on anything.

#2) If you are afraid you won't be able to buy a house, don't despair. If your Grandma hasn't kicked you out of her trailer yet, she probably won't just because we move there. (hahaha Trailer Troll)

#3) Gay marriage a problem for Christian families in Texas, too? You bet. I'm glad the citizens of the Texas state capital city didn't vote on our Prop 8. That would bring new meaning to the term "Cowboy Wedding."

All that said, I understand that a lot of Californians seem to bring too much pretentiousness with them. Trust me when I say, if I encounter a good example of this, I will introduce myself to them as "100% former Californian," and "Don't Mess with Texas." Also, understand it will take every strand of restraint I have to keep from slapping the cheap, knockoff, O.C. swap meet cologne off their poser, metro-sexual selves.

God, guts, and guns built this country! Got the guts to put your name on what you say? E-mail me, pal, we might be neighbors soon! ;) Greasy@dslextreme.com

Monday, November 10, 2008

Kinda fun meme

I love The Simple Life at Home - the blog and the reality, I 'spose.

Anyway, I decided to do this meme:

Bold the things you’ve done and will admit to:

1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/world
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child (I wish, fyi)
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted (well drawn, more like, but I bolded it anyway)
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Gotten flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous (Johnny Depp, y'all - when he was about 18 or 19, and Sean Penn, and others who I can't think of. I live in So Cal, after all.)
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby (two!)
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee

Sure wish I could bold the Paris ones. That's a dream I have; to go to Paris and see where my ancestors are from. Dijon, France - isn't that cool?

Anyway, if anyone wants to play, have at it, and be sure to leave me a comment so I can come see!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Revisiting Texas

I've spent the past few hours looking at property in Texas again. This may be the only way out of our financial problems. When we were talking about it at the beginning of the year, I have to say I was excited. I've never moved farther than five miles from my childhood home, so it seemed like an adventure. When the Gearhead finally said it wasn't going to happen, I tried to look at the bright side. I tried to relax in traffic, to enjoy the weather, to be thankful that I am here for my elderly parents.

Now? I'm not so excited. I did a great job of psyching myself into accepting our circumstances here. The reasons to move now are more concrete, like "If we stay here, we're just going to fall into more and more debt." I could go out and get a full-time job, but we've lived that fantasy before, and don't want to go back. I couldn't make enough to make all the stress and trouble worthwhile anyway.

Updates to come, I'm sure.


This is Breahna. Isn't she pretty?! She's my husband's cousin's daughter. She calls me "Aunt Claire," and has since she was little. She calls The Princess her other half. I'd have her living here if I could. I love this kid.

And here is La Princess. Yup, same dress. They were amazed that despite the fact they are shaped differently, they could both wear the same dresses.

This picture cracked me up. They thought this was a hoochie mama dress, so The Princess did a little dance to emphasize that fact.

They cannot resist the MySpace look. So goofy.

Have a good one, y'all. Sorry, I couldn't resist.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

I've been in a bit of a funk. Finances are super tight since my work nearly dried up. The Gearhead hasn't gotten as much side work as we would like, but is expecting a few checks soon. Our bills are paid, but I've had to charge groceries. We had done Dave Ramsey's Financial Peace University, and I believe his philosophy (Biblically-based) is right on. However, when you don't have enough money to make ends meet, you can't very well pay off debt. I had sworn off credit cards, until there was no money for groceries.

All this to say, I have got to learn to stop worrying. God commands us to not be anxious, yet I am the anxiety queen.

"Rejoice in the Lord always, again I will say, rejoice! Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. The Lord is near. Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard you hearts and your mind sin Christ Jesus." Phillippians 4: 4-7

Do I rejoice in the Lord always? Nope. Do I exhibit a gentle spirit, especially in stressful situations? Nope. I am so not everything that God has called me to be, and yet He gently guides me towards His heart.

It doesn't say that our prayers will be answered by God solving all our problems. It appears to me that merely praying and thanking and letting our "requests be made known to God" is what brings peace.

He grows us during trying times. Someone said recently, "Heaven would not seem as wonderful if our lives here were pain-free." I am not a citizen of this world, but of heaven. We should keep our minds on that, and realize that the trials here bring refinement.

The bottom line for me today is this: I worried, and fretted, and didn't sleep, and got angry. And then, I did some accounting for my notary business. I am not good at accounting, and only do it about twice a year. One company didn't pay me all year, to the tune of hundreds of dollars. It was a clerical error in their office. I am expecting that rather large check in the next few days, which will mean I don't have to charge groceries next week. The Gearhead is also expecting a couple payments, so maybe that will take us through the next month.

This is always how it goes. I have continued this same pattern for years. God is so patient with me. I am posting about this so that hopefully I will remember next time that He will not leave me or forsake me. We have never gone hungry (though a little less food would probably do me good). We have never missed a house payment, or even paid one late. We have decent clothes to wear. We drive old cars, but they get us where we need to go. And we have way more cars than drivers in this house. We are so spoiled in America!

I've been reading Pioneer Woman's blog this past week. Her husband and daughters were in the Dominican Republic with Compassion International. Please go there and look at the pictures they've been sending, and the ones her daughter took. I am ashamed to have complained about my situation.

Blessings to you.