Monthly Archives: May 2012

(yet another) gerbil update…


Today, I was standing at the swimming pool talking to my friend when my middle daughter taps me on my shoulder while I was talking.  She is my little 8 year old that continually looses her gerbils (read here and here for more gerbil updates).

She proceeds to tell me that last night (yes, last night) while showing her gerbils to my youngest daughter she forgot to close the cage door.  And, the gerbils are missing.

I am standing at the pool.  In my bathing suit. Everyone has been swimming for at least 30 minutes.  She gets out of the pool and picks this moment to let me know the gerbils have been missing since last night.

So, I told my friend what the interruption was about… we laughed (if I didn’t laugh, I would cry) and I called my husband.  He said he would go start the hunt.

I called him as we were leaving the pool and he said the cats were standing vigil at the bookcase, so most likely there was at least one gerbil under it.

When we got home we moved the bookcase out a bit and got out our two gerbil balls.  We put one ball at both ends of the bookcase.  Paprika was under there.  It took about 10 minutes of waiting and she walked in to the ball.  I deposited her back into her cage.  She seemed quite happy to be home.

(Note: we are seasoned experts on catching missing gerbils and we have found that the gerbil balls are the quickest and easiest way to return a missing gerbil to it’s cage). 

We couldn’t find Ginger.

I just sat on my daughter’s bed feeling both sad and annoyed.  And, a little deflated.  Would we find the other gerbil?

One of my cats sleeps behind the gerbil cage and she was laying there… so happy to have her entertainment back.  By this time Paprika, the rescued gerbil, was already asleep when I saw the cat moving her ears and head around.  She heard something and it was close.

I laid down on my stomach and moved some items and saw a pile of chewed wires.

The gerbil had to be close.

Then, Ginger walked out from the mess of demolished wires.  I yelled for someone to hand me a gerbil ball.  Ginger walked right into the ball and I put her back into the cage with Paprika.

I can’t believe my daughter’s timing.  It is beyond me why it struck her to let me know the gerbils were missing.. the next day while at the pool.

I can’t believe we actually found the gerbils (yet again).  And, I know we would never have found them this time (or the other times) without the help of our other pets.

We lost a video game and a DVD player today (those were the wires that were chewed) but the gerbils are back safe and sound.

Incredible (yet again).


josephine, anyone?


As I mentioned before I am thoroughly enjoying my new blog life.  I have enjoyed writing my blog and I have also enjoyed looking at all the other blogs out there.

While I was perusing the other blogs I ran across one called “Melinda McGuire Writes ” and she is an author!  I always feel so excited to run across a great blog.  And this was one of them.

I downloaded one of her books for my Kindle called “Josephine: Red Dirt and Whiskey” and I just finished reading it.

This was a great book.  I can’t stop thinking about Josephine.  She was a lonely Southern girl married at 17… and so her story begins.

I have had trouble even starting a new book because I don’t want to let go of Josephine just yet.

I really hope you read this book and enjoy it as much as I did.


Goodreads describes the book:

It’s the Great Depression in rural northeast Texas, and not much has changed, except in the life of Josephine Killian. After losing her mother and her aunt, Josephine finds herself alone and independent. Loneliness leads her to sacrifice her freedom for the bonds of marriage, and life becomes routine. But, when a mysterious stranger, Ethan, appears, he draws out what Josephine fights to keep hidden. Ethan opens up the doors to lust, secrecy and addiction that could lead to Josephine’s self-destruction. Will the people she knows from church, her neighbors in Hefner Falls, and her own desire to turn away from evil be enough to overcome the temptations Ethan offers? Or, has Josephine gone too far to turn back?

swimming in a sling…


Our neighborhood swimming pool has officially opened and my kids love to swim.  We have been to the pool everyday since it opened.

Frequenting the pool on a daily basis has been hard for my oldest daughter.   She recently broke her collar bone and is wearing a sling.

She has worn her bathing suit (and her sling) to the pool each and every day… hoping to get wet.  I let her wade into the water, but have told her not to get the sling wet.  We don’t have another one and she is supposed to wear it at all times.

The good news is that her orthopedic doctor said that she is healing well and she could probably start “kicking around” in the pool in 2 weeks.  Great!

Yesterday, I told her that I would buy her a second sling and she can get the older one wet.  That is all I said… “you can get the sling wet.”

So, I went to buy a second sling and I met them at the pool.

When I got to the pool here are the things I immediately noticed:

  • The sling was wet.
  • She was swimming.
  • With one arm.
  • With her orthopedic doctor’s daughter
  • And, the orthopedic doctor’s wife was watching

I walked over and calmly reminded her that she is not supposed to swim yet, quietly reminded her who she was swimming with and refreshed her memory that all I said was…

“…you can get the sling wet.”

Photograph taken with iPhone and edited with Camera +.

the sunset…


Last night, I stopped to take note of a beautiful sunset.

I was sitting at my daughter’s soccer tryouts and the sun was setting over the field, so I took a few pictures.

I didn’t think about the pictures until this morning and saw that they are quite lovely and had to share!

“Happiness is a Swedish sunset; it is there for all, but most of us look the other way and lose it.” ~ Mark Twain

Photograph taken with iPhone and edited using Camera +.


garage sailing…


I really want to be a garage “sailor.”  I want to wake up on Saturday mornings and drive around nice neighborhoods and go to their garage sales (via mini-van instead of sailboat) and try to find a treasure, a bargain, something fun, something great… for a quarter.

My oldest daughter and I have talked about this for months… that we need to go to garage sales.  I have several friends that have found amazing things at garage sales.  When I ask the price (because I’m nosey like that) they will say things like “25 cents” or “1 dollar.”  It is always something great that I wish I had found for that price!

So, on Saturday morning.  I went “garage sailing.”

I brought my oldest daughter with me (since this was her idea too).  My youngest daughter just happened to wake up as we were walking out of the door.  So, she came too.

We drove around looking for garage sale signs.  We were not on a schedule and not rushed, so we just drove around.  We found several signs for garage sales and followed them.

We found one awful garage sale after another.  Either the items were not even worthy of a sale (not joking) or the items were extremely over priced.  I found a picture of a letter “B” for $10.  At a garage sale.  Really?  I could go to Pottery Barn and buy one new for that price (well, maybe not… but $10 was too high).

At another garage sale we found Beanie Babies for $3.  I think 10 years ago, when they were popular, you could buy a brand new one for $5.  Maybe they were “special” beanie babies, I’m not sure.  Regardless, they were overpriced for a garage sale.

We were disappointed.

The next sign we found boasted a 9 garage sale neighborhood.  Things were looking good.  Again, we were disappointed.  Finding nothing nice… house after house.

Then, we spotted it.  A hot pink double baby doll stroller.  My 5 year old was in the car and had her money ready to spend.

We hopped out of the car.  The little stroller was in perfect condition and it was only 5 dollars.  Yes, it wasn’t 25 cents or even 1 dollar… but it was nice and I knew it would get used.

My daughter handed the money to the mom and the mom turned around and handed the 5 dollar bill to her daughter.  The girl was so excited about the 5 dollars and my daughter was so excited about the double baby stroller.  It made me smile.  It was a win win situation.

When I was trying to find a “Google Image” of the double stroller for this post (on left)… I found one.  The stroller is an American Girl Doll twin stroller that is selling on eBay for $56.00 as a starting bid.  Wow.

Our first Saturday garage sale experience was a success!

It’s hit or miss and I see that now.  I will do it again.

My daughter loves the stroller and it has been used every day since!

Photograph was taken with iPhone and edited using Camera +. 

the lost art of regrouping…


I think one of the most important things to learn in life is to regroup.

Life rarely proceeds exactly as we predict and expect.  From little things to big things…  we can either get mad and dwell on something or choose to regroup.

I know there are big things that are very hard to overcome…. I am referring to the smaller, day-to-day troubles that we might face… not necessarily the big giant ones.  Although, I imagine that regrouping would be helpful for both.

I want my kids to know that when life hands you a different outcome than the one you expected… choose to regroup!  Take a deep breath and proceed forward.

I have seen more and more adults lately that just can’t seem to regroup.  Something seemingly minor happens to them and they just can’t shake it!

Do you think this is something that you need to learn as a child?  Or, do you think you can learn to regroup later in life as an adult?

The dictionary definition of “regroup” is

  1. To come back together in a tactical formation, as after a dispersal in a retreat.
  2. To reorganize for renewed effort, as after a temporary setback

Life will give us all setbacks.  It’s how we handle those setbacks that will keep us happy or make us miserable.

We all can show our kids how to regroup from an early age:

  • If you don’t get the popcicle color you wanted?  Regroup.
  • If you miss the shot on goal?  Regroup, figure out what you did wrong and try again.
  • If it is time to go home and you’re not ready?  Regroup, it’s time.

As an adult, we can demonstrate regrouping to our kids:

  • If you miss a great parking space?  Regroup, find another one.
  • If you someone cuts you off while driving?  Regroup, you’re safe, you didn’t get in an accident, no need to freak out.
  • If your pet has an accident on your favorite rug?  Regroup, it’s just a rug.

And, just a note – the pet that had an accident on the favorite rug.  That was my house.  Last night.  I took a deep breath and I regrouped.

I am hoping to lead by example and show my kids the lost art of regrouping.

Photograph of “The Orange” taken with iPhone and edited with Camera +.

start a blog…


I am so glad I started a blog!

It has been fun to put my thoughts on paper (well, keyboard) and has brightened my day when things were not looking great.

I was able to smile and put a cheery spin on events that were not so cheery… such as my daughter breaking her collar bone or my husband witnessing an attempted robbery on the same day.  Those things need a cheery spin… or I would cry.  My daughter needs to be bright and positive about her injury… or she would cry.

My husband is not phased either way… but, I’m sure it helps to have a happy (and cheery) wife!  I’ll have to ask him.

The other great thing about starting a blog is looking at all the other blogs.  There are some fun and creative people out there!

I have had so much fun looking at the Freshly Pressed section.  It is the day’s best blogs from WordPress.  There is a wide variety of topics here and I enjoy looking at all the great pictures and reading the blogs And, I’ll admit… I try to figure out how I could get “freshly pressed!”

Every day I feel like I struck gold!  I am continually finding a new blog that is entertaining and/or full of great information.

I have found new authors that have blogs and bought their books.  I have found incredible photography websites.  I’ve received recommendations on what photography editing software to use, what iPhone apps work best for editing photos, and many, many lists of book recommendations.

I’ve also found a great blog that only features cat videos and pictures – there is something out there for everyone!

I look at my day differently too.  When something remotely interesting happens… I stop and think about how I could write about it.  It definitely makes ordinary events little more interesting.

I’ve also had great ideas in the middle of the night… I think I’m a genius.  Then, I wake up and I can’t remember a thing…. except that I was almost a genius in type.  Almost.

Everyday, it’s exciting to see what is out there in “blog world” and it’s great to be a part of it.

My advice to you is…

Start a blog! 

It will make you more… cheery!

Photograph taken with iPhone and edited with Snapseed as recommended by a blogger.