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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Is it my turn yet?

Due to Aaron having come down with a mild case of pneumonia, we postponed our holiday dinner with our daughter and family until Dec. 26.  They brought all the food over from Milton-Freewater and cooked it at our house.  

During the cooking period we began to open our gifts.  We don't give lots of gifts to each other--just one or two.  Curtis, almost 4, kept asking, "Is it my turn yet?"  

Then we loaded everything in the vans and took it to my parent's house where we all ate together.  Leg of lamb, mashed yams, green beans and rice pilaf.  What a yummy dinner.

Today the temperature begin to rise and the snow began to melt.  My dad's gutters were full of ice and needed to be removed.  Aaron spent 4 hours helping to chip out the ice.  The clean-up from a beautiful snowfall is not pretty.  The streets are mushy and dirty.  It's slippery.  And if the temperature falls tonight, oh boy, it'll be a mess tomorrow morning.


Friday, December 19, 2008

Yes, Virginia, we will have a White Christmas even if Bing doesn't sing!

All of this beautiful white stuff has resulted in schools being cancelled 3 days this week (Tuesday, Thursday and Friday) so students are getting an extra long Christmas break.  So far the roads haven't been difficult to drive on as long as you slow down and watch out for everyone around you.


Winter in Eastern Oregon, 2008.  Here is the front of our house.  After Aaron shoveled off the front porch earlier this week, it is now completely covered again.  We can't use the front door.



Our beautiful back yard.
Picnic anyone?  



               The neighbors appreciate
               Aaron clearing the side-
               walks and driveways.




The snow-blower is a gas hog.  One
neighbor gave him $5 and then also
gave him a gallon of gas.



  
                                Our neighbor's pine tree.                                                            












Monday, December 8, 2008

Be Prepared

When I arrived home from work and exercising at Curves my husband had quite an interesting adventure to share.  He and our Pastor, Ron, had gone to a place that does special wood cuts, etc. for Ron to buy a mantel for his parent's fireplace.

On the way home they spotted a car along side the road with a woman looking through her trunk.  They decided to see if she needed help and sure enough she did.  She had a flat tire and her donut tire was unusable and she had no other spare.  Aaron and Ron told her about calling Les Schwab.  She had no money but both Aaron and the pastor said that they would pay for the tire.  The guys went over to the nearest McDonalds for lunch and then came back to wait with the lady.  After an hour the tire guys showed up (right on time) and fixed her tire.  $136.  Ron gave her his address with the hope that she'll be able to pay him back.  But even if she doesn't he will have done a good deed.  We'll split the cost of the tire with him.

So Aaron sent out an email to our lady friends telling them they should make sure to have a spare and a jack and any other needed tools in their vehicles.  So if you only have a donut tire-think about getting a spare.  Make sure you have a jack.  You don't want to be stranded along a freeway or back road unprepared.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Life as I know it

So hopefully I haven't been rude to anyone lately.  I certainly try not to be.

After returning from Texas on Monday November 17, our son and his wife received a call that our daughter-in-law's grandmother was nearing death.  So they made an emergency trip to Hermiston to see her.  Of course, that gave both sets of grandparents another chance to see our kids and our granddaughters.  On Saturday we had the privilege of having both of our children and all 5 grandchildren together.  That doesn't happen very often and we are thankful for this opportunity.

Although I am enjoying my subbing duties at the High School Library I'll be glad to see the regular person recover from her injuries and be able to return to work.  Hopefully it'll be sometime in January.  Or February.  She has to be released by doctors to be able to return to work.

I also had the opportunity to share my faith in God with students today.  They brought up the subject, they asked the questions and I answered.  How great is that!!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

HOW RUDE!!

At the Denver airport I went to get into line at Heidi's Deli to get some breakfast for Aaron and me.  I thought I was at the end of the line, but NO I wasn't.  I cut in before other people and wasn't even aware of it.  I think it was a combination of not much sleep the night before and getting up at 4:00 a.m.  I heard a lady say, "How rude!"  and looked around to see who she meant.  The flight attendant who was right behind me sat by Aaron and me at the tables and I asked him if she had meant me.  He said she did and of course, I apologized to him.  The lady had left to look for another eating spot or I would have apologized to her also.  I have no idea what she looked like and I never saw her again.  So I'll make a general apology to the people in line behind me....I'm sorry I cut in.  I honestly thought I was at the end of the line.  I have to say that this bothered me for hours.  I don't intentionally like to be rude.

So if you were at Heidi's Deli at the Denver airport on Tuesday, November 11 around 7:00 a.m. and I got in line in front of you...I'm sorry.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Driving Miss Margaret

On Monday October 27 we left our home at 5:12 a.m. and drove just over 600 miles to my sister's house in Fairfield, CA.  Aaron drove the entire distance.  He had said he was going to have me drive some, but he is like the Energizer Bunny--he just keeps going and going.  I have the unfortunate habit of drifting off to sleep now and again and again and again.  At least that way I'm not giving him any trouble!!

It was great to see our nephew Spencer and hear his stories of boot camp.  What a great attitude he has about the entire experience--even the really rough parts.  He had great admiration for his drill instructor.  This coming Tuesday--Election Day--he starts the next part of his training in San Diego and then he'll be heading to Virginia to begin training for his MOS.

I always have a great time being with my sister Jeanne.  She had to work but was able to take off early.

We are off again on November 8--flying to Lincoln, Nebraska and then on to Austin, TX to see our son and family.  Can't wait to give those little granddaughters a hug and read to them and play games with them.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Jes walkin' along, mindin' my own bizness

Yep, I'm doin' my best Sarah Palin.  The more I hear of her the more I like her.  She's a down-to-earth woman who is learning, learning, learning.  I hope that America gives her and McCain a chance to show what they can do.

Now, on a different subject.  Yesterday I took a walk here in Fairfield, CA and I'm so much slower than I used to be.  My only knees protest at every step and the 12 minute mile I used to be able to walk has turned in to a 15 minute half-mile.  

One thing I really like while walking along the sidewalk is how the city keeps all the bushes and trees trimmed off along the sidewalk.  Everything is cut of evenly so that nothing protrudes out over the sidewalk to impede your walking.  I wish that my city in Oregon would enforce the policy they have whereby the property owners are supposed to keep the sidewalk area cleared.  Too often we have to step out into the street to avoid trees and bushes.  So, thanks Fairfield City Crews for keeping things cleared off for the walkers.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Number 101

This is my 101st post. I've blogged my way through Botswana, across the USA, and in Namibia. I've expressed my views on politcal and religious beliefs. I've shared about my battle with weight, my family and the lady who thought I wasn't going to stop at the stop sign. I've had mostly good comments although one person told me I was wrong to feel the way I feel about who should be the next President of the United States of America.

I am very concerned that our nation is quickly becoming Socialist--expecting the government to do everything for us from birth to death. God help us is my prayer.

Credit cards....stop using them unless you can pay it off EVERY month. It took me awhile to learn that lesson but I have found it is an excellent way to live--debt free.

House...don't buy a house that you can't afford to make the monthly payments. That is the cause of the foreclosure problem going on here in the USA.

Live within your means is a good motto to live by.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Four Letter Words or Five Letter Words or a Nine Letter Word

I admit I don't understand the need to use crude language.  There are so many other words to use.  I've already had to take one friend off of Facebook because other people posted on his/her site with bad language.  I hope I don't have to do that anymore.

Last night we saw the movie Fireproof and I totally recommend it.  Only one professional actor, Kirk Cameron, is in the movie--everyone else is an amateur.  It has much to say to every family.  I think anyone who watches it could pick something out and say "that is just the way it is in my family."  I know it affected me that way in several areas.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Margaret Wetterling has voted

Oregon has gone to mail ballots only making the day of the clerk announcing, "Margaret Wetterling has voted" to be a thing of the past.  I prepared my ballot yesterday evening and tomorrow I'll either mail it in or drive to the library and drop it in the ballot box there.  No one will announce anything...in fact...no one may even notice.  But I'll know that I have done my civic duty and voted for the presidential candidate of my choice (see below to see who that is) and for the various senators, congressmen, Oregon state measures and local city council representatives.  My friend, Joe, is on the ballot.  Yep, the same ballot as the candidates for President of the United States of America.  We live in a great country!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Working Out

It's all about the moving and moving and moving.  This is a picture of me in Windhoek, Namibia at Curves.  I exercise regularly at the Curves in Hermiston, Oregon.  Is it doing me any good?  I hope so.  I may not be seeing huge losses pounds wise, but it is good for me in staying limber.  Women of all ages exercise there.  Sometimes I think about quitting but I know that it is a good thing for me to do.  Gotta keep moving and moving and moving.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Anonymous

I believe that I have the right to support for President whomever I wish.  I believe that YOU have the right to support for President whomever YOU wish.  I believe that I have the right to say so on my blog or in person.  I believe that YOU have the right to say so on YOUR blog or in person.

I don't think I have the right to tell you that you are wrong.  I don't believe that you have the right to tell me that I am wrong.  We have the feelings we do for various reasons.  My reasons are not wrong and your reasons are not wrong.  This is the United States of America where both you and I are FREE to say what we want (within reason--no shouting "Fire" in a crowded theater unless there really is a fire.)  And we are FREE to worship the way we please--the government does not have a state-sponsored church we have to attend.  And we are FREE to vote from our heart. Whoever wins this election will be my President and I will have respect for him.

My husband's cousin, Liz, took a video of Sarah Palin at a rally and how she handled a heckler. Liz posted this to You Tube.  It got picked up on the Drudge Report and bodabing bodaboom over 41,000 people have seen it.  Unfortunately, other people claimed it was their video and actually made money off of it.  Now tell me.....is that fair or honest????

Friday, October 10, 2008

Who will win?

I'll admit it...I'm just a tad bit scared.  I'm scared of what will happen if McCain is not elected.  I'm scared that the time will come when we'll lose our freedom of religion, our freedom of speech, our freedom to bear arms, etc.

I know there has been a lot of stuff out there about Obama that ISN'T true, but there is also a lot of truth being told.  McCain doesn't have a stellar past either and that has been brought up also.  One thing I have admired about McCain is that he admitted his errors.  He admitted he was not faithful to his wife when he returned from Vietnam.  I have yet to hear Obama admit to any of his past mistakes. (Perhaps he has and I just haven't heard it.)

The Bible tells me "that he who is without sin should cast the first stone."  I'm not without sin, I admit that.  But when I asked Jesus into my heart to be my Savior and Lord I have someone to go to and ask forgiveness when I do sin.

If you read this and you're feeling a little scared, please vote for McCain.  And for peace of mind and heart, ask Jesus to be your Savior.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

A little brag about my kids

Larisa, who is 35, and her husband Paul have 2 children of their own and have over the past few years taken in foster children.  Just yesterday 2 siblings were brought to their home, a 5 month old and a 2 year old.  I don't know how long they will be there.  Thankfully, Paul has a great job which allows Larisa to be a stay-at-home mom.  

Nolan, who is 32, and his wife Maryanne have 3 children.  They are also fortunate that Nolan has a job which allows Maryanne to be a stay-at-home mom.  To earn extra money Nolan mows lawns on the weekend.  Maryanne is homeschooling their oldest daughter who is in kindergarten.

I am proud of my children and how they are parenting their children.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

A New Marine is being birthed

As I write, my nephew Spencer is in The Crucible.  He is at the Marine Corps Recruit Depot in San Diego in his last week of boot camp.  The Crucible is 55 hours of intense training,  where you absolutely must depend upon your fellow Marines.  In these 55 hours each Marine is given food for 2.5 meals.  In honor of what he is going through my sister, Spencer's mom, is only having 1 meal a day.  I'm very proud of the choice Spencer made to join the military.  He knew that college was not for him and so he chose this direction.  He has really loved boot camp and this 18 year old kid will come out an 18 year old man.  Semper Fi

My other nephew, Cleighton, is in the Navy and is serving on the USS Ronald Reagan--somewhere out in the ocean.  While this may sound exciting, it isn't.  It isn't like being on a cruise ship.  But what they are doing is important.  Cleighton has his watch times, like the other sailors, always being observant for what is out there.

God bless the USA.

Whinin' about the Wind

Today I worked at my former work place as a substitute for 4 hours.  I helped some third graders with writing sentences using subjects and predicates and how they must match.  It seems to be a difficult concept to comprehend for children, especially when they don't read what they've written out loud.  When I read the sentences to them they could hear what was wrong and what needed to be changed.  I enjoyed that time period of learning.  Why, oh why, oh why didn't I stay in college and become the teacher I was planning to be!!!

About the wind?  The person I subbed for has playground duty with the first graders.  It is not a difficult time--just walking around, talking to kids, making sure they don't hurt themselves or someone else.  But today in Eastern Oregon it is terribly windy.  Back in the "old days" when I first worked at the school and had playground duty every day, I wore contact lenses.  I was always having to pop in to a nearby classroom and work to get the grit out of my eyes.  Now I'm back to glasses and the wind was no problem.

The wind is probably my least favorite thing about living in Eastern Oregon.

Go McCain/Palin!!  

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Died in the Wool Conservative Republic

Yeah, that's me.  Originally I was a Republican because my parents were so I didn't know any difference.  Now I pretty much know why I'm a Republican...because I'm a conservative.  I did tell a fund raiser on the phone one day that if they called me again asking for money I was going to become an Independent.

Yeah, I'm going to vote for McCain/Palin.  I was very pleased at how Gov. Palin handled the debate this evening.  She may not have been perfect, but she is very new to the national scene.

Yeah, I'll be glad when the election is over because shortly after that we get to go to Texas to see our beautiful granddaughters.


Wednesday, September 17, 2008

My Hometown

What I Like 
1.  The attractive walkway with flowers and fountains along the main highway through town.
2.  The clocktower at the park by the fire station.
3.  The house at the end of our street that has been all cleaned up by the new owners.
4.  The house around the corner painted a beautiful dark olive green while we were gone this summer.
5.  The new retaining wall by the apartments on Sunland.
6.  The beautiful flowers at the house on the corner of 17th and Alleluia.
7.  The very nice park and walking trail by the Umatilla River.
8.  The nice yards that people put a lot of time into keeping attractive.

What I Don't Like 
1.  Gang grafitti written wherever they want to write it--generally on other people's property.
2.  Yards that are not kept up.
3.  Cats that come and use our yard for their toilet.
4.  When someone decides it'd be fun to put soap in the fountain which then can ruin the motor costing us, the taxpayers, money.
5.  People who drop their soda cups, bottles, etc. and other trash anywhere they please--sometimes within sight of a trash can.
6.  Shopping carts being left anywhere and everywhere in a parking lot.


Friday, September 12, 2008

An Apple A Day

Aaron and I are the proud owners of 2 Apple Computers. Yes, you read that right...two.  We purchased an IMac and and a MacBook Air.  It has taken several hours of work getting email configured, getting one connected to the DSL and the other to the wireless router but Hallelujah...we have been successful.

So at this moment we have 4 computers, two of which we need to delete items or move to the Macs.  Our granddaughter is buying the laptop and the old PC will go to PC heaven.  For the time being Aaron has to use the old PC for his Sunday School lessons because he has so much info on it.

Now neither of us can complain about the amount of time someone is on the internet or using the computer.

An apple a day keeps the arguments away.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Last weekend in Namibia

It is August 30--our son and his wife's 11th anniversary. Happy Anniversary Nolan and Maryanne. It is also our last weekend in Namibia. This morning the plan was to take one of the workers out to breakfast but I woke up not feeling so well so Aaron went by himself. Now, I'm telling you the truth!! for me to turn down going out to breakfast you have to know I really didn't feel good. After taking some meds I began to feel better. I gave a last piano lesson to Laudia and she presented me with a dress that is her tribal dress. I was very surprised. What a nice thing for her to have had made for me. Now I have a dress from two of the tribes here--Damara and Oshivambo (and I've probably spelled both of them wrong.)

Tomorrow we'll be busy in church--Aaron is preaching and I'm leading worship. Then Monday morning we'll head off to the airport.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My Day by Margaret

Today I have been married 38 years--and all to the same man.

This is my day:

Went to breakfast at the German cafe where I had a brotchen with salami, cheese and tomato. Also had an apple turnover and coffee. Aaron had bacon, egg and toast with a jelly donut.

Came back home briefly, then went to pick up Rosie to clean the church then we went to a streetside vendor to buy a hat.

We have been amused by the fact that this sign clearly says No Vendors or Selling but everyday this man is here selling his hats. Also several women set up food pots to sell meals. You will see a policeman standing around and even purchasing food. So perhaps the sign doesn't mean what it says.





This is a gambling joint in town. I have NOT been there. It is called The Lucky Dip--lucky for whom I'd like to know.





After returning home Aaron went to the shop to work and I went to the library where I solved some of the mysteries I needed to solve. I worked on songs for church tomorrow and got that all prepared.

I had forgotten to take my phone with me so poor Rosie spent more time at the church then planned. We went to pick her up, Aaron took her home, I stayed at the church waiting for the choir.

Only 3 people came and so instead of doing a special number tomorrow they will be part of the worship team. I taught them songs they did not know.

Now Aaron has the BBQ going to do some chicken and I'll cook some rice.

All in all a very profitable day.

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Taking it for granted

Electricity that is. Living in the USA we are used to having electricity most of the time. Winter weather can change that, and also other circumstances. But generally we have electricity.

Today here in Namibia it had been announced that the electricity would be off all over town from 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. We had a dinner to prepare for the folks from various towns in Namibia who had gathered in Otjiwarongo for a church conference. Fortunately most cooking is done on gas burning stoves. There were four of us in the kitchen preparing the meat, onions and potatoes. Several kilos of rice had been cooked. Carrot salad was the vegetable of the day.

Many people here enjoy the bones and this game meat had lots of bone. The long hours of cooking made the meat extremely tender and when I sat down to eat I enjoyed it so much.

The only bad thing about not having electricity today was not being able to watch the Olympics but that's okay. It was a marvelous, busy day and the tiredness I felt was deserved. Working to serve others brings a great reward of satisfaction.

Tomorrow we will do the cleanup. The hot water had all been used so cleaning by hand wouldn't have been very sanitary. The dish washer is full. By tomorrow we'll have hot water again and the kitchen will be put to rights.

Ahh...life is good.

Sunday, August 10, 2008

You Just Might Get Called to Preach...even if you aren't a preacher


Today, August 10, we visited another local Assembly of God church here in Otjiwarongo. We went expecting to hear one of the students, who is the pastor and also attends the Bible school, preach, but he had not yet returned from Zambia. A young lady was leading the service, beginning with prayer. At one point she welcomed us and called Aaron "pastor." I think perhaps if you are visiting Africa and you are white and attending church it may be assumed you are a pastor. Not the case for us.

A bit into the service this young lady and a lady we knew came back to us and asked if Aaron could preach. When you are serving Jesus, the answer should be YES. So as they sang all their songs, announcements and more songs (I'd told R to sing lots of songs) Aaron was thinking about what he would talk to them about.

So.....as it turned out, Aaron did become the preacher for today. He had me go up front with him and I gave a short talk. Every sentence either of us said is translated in two languages. You are patient and speak one sentence at a time and it works well. Aaron then gave his talk about the potential we have to be used of Jesus, using how water goes through turbines to turn the generator to produce electricity at a dam as an example.

At the end of the service after they took the offering I was asked to conclude in prayer. Before praying I said I wanted to sing a favorite song I'd learned here last year: "There's no one, there's no one like Jesus." Oh they sing it with gusto.

What a privilege to serve Jesus in this way. Be ready!!

I am putting this picture in just because I think it is a cool looking picture of zebras at Etosha National Park which we visited a few weeks ago.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Double Bar LInes


For all you non-musicians out there, the double bar line means you are at the end of the song. For me right now it means that the class is finished, the recital is finished, and the juice and cookies are finished.

Some students played pianisimo, some played mezzo forte, and a couple played forte. Some played andante when they should have played lento, some played...oh you get the picture. I can't think of enough musical terms to describe it. I worked and worked with those who were playing eighth notes, explaining the relationship between quarter notes and eighth notes. "Eighth notes are two times faster than the quarter notes. You cannot play the simple quarter notes fast and then slow down for the eighth notes. If you can't play the eighth notes faster then you must slow down the quarters." If I said it once, I said it 10 times. When it was M's turn you could tell she was extremely nervous. Her 3 youngest children were there to hear her for the first time. She announced that she was going to play "Away in a Manger." Throughout the song she made so many mistakes and corrected them that if you didn't know what she was playing you'd have had a hard time figuring it out. But when she was finished she was greeted with a wild round of applause. Later she asked her husband if he could tell she was playing "Away in a Manger." He said, "Well, you told us what you were going to play." She laughed hilariously at herself for quite a while.

When I called for R to come play I asked him what he was going to play and he replied, "The Falling Bridge." Aaron laughed very hard as did we all. Two of his friends had come to hear him and he played "London Bridge is Falling Down" exceptionally.

Dr. Z had learned the melody of "Amazing Grace" from the printed page and then came up with own version. I had showed him how to play a C Chord with his left hand to end the piece and he ended with a flourish by playing it 3 times.
He and the other man who played Amazing Grace said they needed the grace of God to be able to play.

Things at the campus will now be very legato until the middle of August when the Church Conference starts. I'll finish up in the library, and Aaron will continue with his carpentry. Our flat needs some attention. The stress is over for awhile.
We've been asked to come back to Namibia next year after we finish up in Botswana. We'd be here for 2 weeks and I'd teach the music class again.

Friday, August 1, 2008

What's a jingle?

In preparation for teaching music here in Nambia, I did a little searching on the internet looking for easy beginner piano music. I found a site where it is free to print music from and I downloaded 20 songs in to my flash drive and printed them out, making a booklet for each of my students. The first song was A Tisket, a Tasket, A Green and Yellow Basket. Finally after hearing that many times, I told them "No more A Tisket, A Tasket."

One of the songs is 2 lines of "Jingle Bells" and a student was singing it as he walked along. He saw my husband and asked, "What's a jingle?" Another song is "London Bridge is Falling Down." A student wrote "important" on the song, meaning he really wanted to learn it. They may not understand it, but they like the song. They were amazed when I told them London Bridge is in Arizona now.

A student was overheard asking, "Why did London Bridge fall? Was it during World War II?" When I was told that it cracked me up. Things we take so for granted just knowing are not necessarily things that are known all over the world.

Another student was absolutely determined to learn the simple version of "Amazing Grace." On his page he wrote "vital." And he has learned it. It may not be perfect but it will be recognizable. The amazing thing about all of this is....they've learned these simple songs in only 5 days. I've tried to spend 15 minutes per day with each of the 14 students and tomorrow they will have a small recital. We had a practice today where each of them played their piece. How exciting. We applauded. They high fived. These are adults who are so excited to learn a little about playing the piano.

One man who plays well by ear, has learned on his own "When the Saints Go Marching In." It has chords and tied notes--not necessarily an easy feat for a beginner. He has spent a lot of time on this song. I've helped him twice, figuring out the rhythm, where the notes fit together, etc.

It will be interesting to see how the recital comes off tomorrow. To be continued.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Music Class Glitch

Here I am on the first day of teaching Fundamentals of Music in Otjiwarongo. On the wall behind me you see words on a blue background....this is NOT what I was hoping for. I had prepared a Presentation slide show (kind of like Power Point, but not) to illustrate some of the points in the lesson. Alas, we were not able to get it to show.....unless....you clicked the mouse on the top of the slide and slid it all the way off the desktop screen and then it would show on the wall. No matter what we did, it would not work.

Then this morning I took my computer to church to use for projecting the words of the songs we were going to sing and the words would not show on the wall no matter what we did. So whatever we did on Saturday to try to see the presentation, completely messed it up for using the program I have for our church songs. So, we just sang without the words to read from. How novel. It was okay, though, because most everyone knew the songs. Everything turned out well. Crisis averted.

Teaching in Otjiwarongo


Fundamentals of Music class in Otjiwarongo. My first experience to teach anything other than a Sunday School class. In one week's time--24 hours of class time, and helping students practicing on the piano--we will have a small recital on August

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Ohhhh, the Pain, the Pain

of not having a battery for our laptop. It has completely died during the 6 weeks we've been in Namibia and D**l says we can only use their batteries and they can only be purchased from D**l.

So if our intricate plug-in system here gets bumped, the computer goes off immediately..and I mean immediately. Today I was at the library at the Bible School entering some information for spine labels and bar codes I need to print. The long, long extension cord I generally use was in use across the room and I couldn't just take it. I had my laptop plugged into the wall at a table, but the room where the printer is, is too far away to reach so I'd have had to unplug, have the computer immediately die, then go plug in and have to do the whole restart thing. I thought about it and thought about it and decided that I'll do it another time when I just start in the room where the printer is.

We are praying that our laptop lasts until we get back to the States where we will purchase new computers.

If ONLY the battery had died before we left for Namibia. That's life on the dry side.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

And uh one and uh two

In 2006 I was asked to teach Fundamentals of Music to the students at the Bible School in Tlokweng, Botswana. The missionary gave me the book to begin studying. The course is actually intended t0 be a self-study text but even with my 3 years of studying music in college and almost 10 years of piano lessons, I have to admit there are things in this text I've never of, so to think that a non-musician could grasp all of this material on their own is hard to imagine.

I brought the book home with me and several months later decided to do some studying. I had to email the missionary's wife to ask something and she wondered why I was beginning so early. Then in 2007 while in Namibia, Mark, the missionary here asked if I'd teach the course. Glibly I replied that I would.

The book had set unopened for quite some time in my home in Hermiston, but before we came to Namibia this year I did begin studying. But I became more serious about it after I arrived. I've made many notes in the text, I've made a flip chart to use in class. I've printed off free beginning piano music and I have a chord chart for each student.

I'll begin teaching 4 hours per day this coming Saturday, July 26, and then Mon-Fri of the following week. Each student (12) will sign up for a time to practice very simple songs on a piano. I'll go back and forth from the two rooms spending 15 min. w/each student.

This is my goal. By Saturday, August 2, each student will be able to play a very simple piece, or two. Those who have some experience with music may be able to play something that is a bit of a challenge. They'll take a final in the morning and then right after we will have a mini-recital. Victoria (missionary's wife) suggested we have juice and cookies. We'll have a certificate of some sort. This will be so different for these Namibian students that I'm looking forward to how it is all going to come off.

This will be my prepatory for teaching the course in 2009 in Botswana. Hope my practice session goes well.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Yes, Virginia, Honest People Do Exist

On Saturday, July 12, Aaron and I along with our missionary friend Bill took a trip to Waterberg Plateau Park, where we went on a 4-hr. game drive. We saw only about 4 animals--the hydrox, the sable, and eland and a giraffe, but being on top of the plateau, one of the higher points in Namibia was interesting. Red sand, very fine, would be difficult to drive through in a regular vehicle but the Land Rover we were in handled it just fine.

Unfortunately during the 4-hr. drive Bill lost his wallet. It is actually more than a wallet. It is like a daytimer with all the money and cards, etc. By the time he realized it was lost it was after 6:30 p.m. and very dark....and a long way from where he lost it. Linus promised to keep a look out for it and Bill made several phone calls. No word, no wallet, no use of any of his cards.

Today after the class he is teaching was finished he took off for Waterberg. It is slightly more than an hour's drive. He talked to the folks at the park but his wallet was no where to be found. Shortly after he pulled in to our driveway he received a phone call that the wallet was found. There were a group of students who were in the same area we'd been and one of them had picked it up. Not one dollar was missing. Not one card was missing. The young man, Moses, wondered why anyone would throw away such a thing, with so much in it. Bill rewarded the young man and when he and Aaron returned he was a happy man. It is nice to know that there are honest people in this world.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Does He or doesn't He......Exist???

As I was perusing the various blogs I came across one that looked interesting. The person who created this blog had the scripture "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." Phil. 4:13, so I believe I can assume that this blogger and I share "like precious faith."

On her site she has some discussions linked to blogcatalog. One of the items that people are discussing is "Is There a God?" I found that interesting and I thought I'd weigh in on the subject, but here on my own blog.

As an evangelical Christian I have complete faith that there is a God, that He sent His only Son, Jesus Christ to earth as a baby, to grow up and eventually die for my sins. He did not stay in the tomb, as on the 3rd day He was resurrected from the dead and now sits at the right hand of His Father, interceding on our behalf.

So....what if I'm wrong? What have I lost in this life if I'm wrong? Because of my faith in Jesus Christ I have adopted certain life style changes. So if I'm wrong in my belief about God and Jesus Christ, here is what I've missed out on. I've missed out on getting a DUII (DWI) from drinking too much alcohol (I personally drink no alcohol.) I've missed out on various diseases directly associated with smoking cigarettes. I've missed out on being addicted to heroin, meth, cocaine, etc. I've missed out on HIV/AIDS. I've missed out on sexually transmitted diseases because I've been faithful to my husband. I've missed out on robbery, murder, etc. I've missed out on losing all my money to gambling. Isn't that a lot to miss out on?

So...what if YOU are wrong if you don't believe in God? Here's what you will miss out on. You'll miss out on having complete peace in your heart knowing that Jesus is in control of your life. You'll miss out on an eternity spent in heaven with your fellow believers from around the world. You'll miss out on the joy of not being addicted to drugs, alcohol or cigarettes.

Now I know you won't all agree with me about the cigarettes or alcohol and you'll say you can still be a follower of Jesus Christ and do those things. Okay. But they aren't for me. That is the choice I made. The Bible doesn't say, "Thou shalt not smoke." But it does say that my body is the dwelling place of the Holy Spirit and I want to make that dwelling place as good a place as possible.

If I am wrong in my belief about God, at the end of my life I won't say, "Oh, I wish I'd used drugs," or "I wish I'd been unfaithful to my husband." Or other things like that. It will still have been a fulfilling life.

But if you don't believe in God and His Son, what things might you say at the end of YOUR life?

I'm not here to force you to believe in God. I'm just here to give you something to think about.

"For God so loved the world (you can substitute your name here) that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved." John 3:16, 17

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Observations

I go to Curves in Hermiston, Oregon on a regular basis . While in Windhoek on Monday I went into the local Curves to have my picture taken. The equipment was just the same as in my local Curves but I didn't exercise. Melissa, a missionary here in Otjiwarongo, is putting me through my paces in a way that is very difficult for this ol' gal.
While driving in to Windhoek on Monday we came up behind this truck loaded with wood. I was able to take this photo through the windscreen (windshield). It was only when we got quite close that we discovered it was all held in place with a rope.For the life of me I don't know why the above writing is underlined. It isn't even a choice I can make here on blogger.

Eggs: This morning I'm in the process of making deviled eggs for a baby shower to be held this evening. The eggs were all brown, as are all the eggs I've so far seen. Are they any healthier than white eggs? Nope, they just came from brown chickens. If you don't believe me, look it up on the internet.

Baby Shower: Baby showers are conducted somewhat differently here than in the USA. Instead of each person bringing a gift, the invitees are asked to give sums of money..whatever it is felt they can afford. Then the hostess or someone she asks purchases baby gifts for the honoree. This way no one is embarrassed if they are unable to spend much toward a gift. My part in the festivities was to buy items for a game--a classic shower game. Items on a tray...show for a bit...name as many as you can. At the end all of the items will be given to the mother. My allotment to spend was N$200 (approximately $25 US). I purchased thirteen items including nappies and something called Gripe water which must be used if the baby is having a little indigestion.

BBC Food: I am enjoying watching the Food Network from BBC. It is very different than the American Food network. There is no Emeril Lasgasse, no Rachel Ray, no Bobby Flay...But we do have Ainsley Harriot on a program called Off the Menu, where 2 teams work to recreate a recipe from a famous South African restaurant. Quite entertaining. I also like Jenny Bristow Light, who shows how to cook things with less fat. Others I like are The Endless Feast (which comes from America), Master Chef at Large, a program where they are searching for a winner whose prize will be that they get to work in a restaurant. So far all I've seen are cookoffs where they choose someone to be in the quarterfinals. I have yet to see the quarterfinals. After awhile, Aaron will say, "Can't we watch something else?"

Hallmark channel: The Hallmark channel here is somewhat different than at home. There are some really good things to watch on it. Midsomer Murders is interesting. I also really like McCloed's Daughters--a series out of Australia. It is from 2004 but they are new to me.

For news we get CNN out of Britain, and the BBC News. One nice thing is that we are not hearing TOO MUCH of the election goings on in the US--no ads. How nice!

We enjoy reading the Namibian newspapers and seeing how they are viewing what is going on in the world. They are concerned about what is happening in Zimbabwe.

Enough observations, my eggs are awaiting deshelling!!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Our little helper

Aaron and I are once again in Otjiwarongo, Namibia for 3 months. This year the missionaries, Mark and Victoria are living in the house in front of us. Last year this house was being worked on and it finally got to the point where they could move in in June. It is very nice to have them close by although I have promised that I won't be dropping in all the time.

Between our flat and the house was nothing but dirt. Mark had the workers put in a sidewalk of paver blocks between the two houses. Aaron asked how I'd feel if we put in some money and had a larger area covered. So we did and it is so nice. It is big enough for both pickups to be parked on it and still we have room to walk in front of them. The picture to the right is Gino. Gino is almost 4 years old. He is the son of Pauline and Seigfried, both of whom work for the missionaries and the Bible School. Gino comes to work with his parents and entertains himself quite nicely. He speaks very little English but we seem to get the idea of what he wants. The picture shows him helping to carry the small blocks over by the house. He was chattering away to his dad and gesturing. I asked if he was saying that he was putting the bricks in a nice stack. That was a pretty close translation.

I received an email telling me that someone had subscribed to my blog. But I have no idea who as it came out in computer gobbledygook. So whoever you are...enjoy.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Winging our Way

On June 4 we flew from Seattle to Dulles International Airport in Washington, D.C. The movie on the flight was The Spiderwick Chronicles which I soon realized was not a movie I was interested in so I listened in on the conversations between the FAA controllers and the pilots of planes in the area, including ours. As we flew across the country our flight was handed off from one locale to another and each one asked the various pilots to check in. I heard a lot of G'day and we were in the United States. Must be a shortcut way of greeting. As we flew along I realized that many, many planes were being put into a holding pattern. There was very bad weather in the D.C. area, including a tornado that caused the tower at the airport to be evacuated for a period of time. One pilot asked how much longer this would be happening as he was running low on fuel. A couple of planes may have landed in Richmond, VA if I understood all the lingo correctly. One pilot said they were getting a pretty good knocking around and asked if there was an alternate level they could fly at. Again, if I understood correctly, he was told to continue where he was.

Finally planes were beginning to be allowed to land. The debris had been cleared from the runways. I'll bet there was a lot of activity going on that we never saw, but I sure do appreciate all of the hard work done to allow all those planes to land safely.

So when we landed we had to get over to terminal A for our international flight on South African Airlines. We arrived with a little time to spare, but not enough to get any lunch. At about 5:00 p.m. Eastern time we boarded the plane and we sat there and we sat there and we sat there. Ay yi yi!! Seems all that time that we couldn't land the planes waiting to take off couldn't because of the storm so there was a real back up. The pilot had people communicating with the officials to explain that due to our very long flight that working hours for the staff was going to be a real problem if we couldn't take off soon. Finally at approximately 7:00 p.m. we were given clearance to take off and after we were in the air the pilot explained that if we'd had to wait one more hour the flight would have been delayed 24 hours. I'm glad that didn't happen because then we'd have had to get ahold of Mark and Victoria in Namibia to let them know we'd be late...really late.

About 16 hours later we landed in Johannesburg, South Africa where we then hurried to our next flight. Guess what!!! That flight was delayed by about a half hour also. Then when we landed in Windhoek our luggage hadn't--along with just about everyone on the plane. So while Aaron was filling out paperwork, I went to look for Mark and Victoria. They were drinking coffee in the cafe and I walked up to them and said, "I have good news and bad news. The good news is that we are here. The bad news is our luggage isn't."

Eventually we left the airport and headed off on the 3 hour drive to Otjiwarongo. The lights of the city looked good in the distance. Our long day's journey into night was finally over.

Saturday, May 31, 2008

Made in America????? Not anymore!!

As much as possible I try to buy things made in the USA, but it is becoming increasingly difficult for many items that we need in our everyday life.

Recently my husband and I decided it was time to update our silverware....oops...I mean flatware. Obviously I can't afford silverware, but that is what we've always called it.

I looked at a local store and the brand carried there was made in another country. As I preferred to buy American made, I checked on the Internet and even called one company whose number I found on their website. I discovered that no silverware is made in the USA. The last company was evidently Oneida and they quit manufacturing here several years ago--according to what I was told. If I am wrong, please accept my humble apology.

Anyway....the silverware arrived today and it is truly beautiful. I purchased it through the JC Penney website and I'm very pleased with it. 92 pieces of silverware for $69.99. It isn't light weight and looks to be very durable.

I did get a chuckle out of the instructions for care that came with it and I want to share some of those things with you.

Please follow below use and care instructions in order to prevent injuries and enjoy many years of use.

Towel drying immediately after washing will maintain the appearance of the finish and eliminate water spots. Sounds like a good idea. Did my mom teach me this?

In general, undissolvable salt will "pit" stainless steel surfaces. Please to not put flatware together with salty, highly acidic foods or beverages (i.e. pickling) for long period of time. How many of you drink pickling as a beverage?

If wash by hand, flatware is easy to clean with warm water and mild dishwashing soap using a sponge, nylon pad or dishcloth. Soft scrub without bleach is recommended. Good advice for the new bride.

Do not submerge for long time. Will they stop breathing?

Do not use oven cleaners. Do not use steel wool. Why didn't I think of this?

This is one of my favorites. Always put flatware on a firm, flat surface to avoid falling accident. I have fallen many times in my life and where I put my flatware has not prevented me from falling even once.

Always clean the flatware set after each use. Failing to do so will result in residue built-up, making them difficult to clean later. Just think of the dish soap you'll save if you only wash your flatware once a week.

Flatware tools are sharp. Always keep them away from children. Children must eat with their fingers as flatware is far to dangerous for them to use.

Please keep the flatware set in a kitchen cabinet when not in use. Well, that ruins my plans to keep the flatware on the floor!

For daily dust, wipe with dry or damp clothes. But if I'm keeping them in a kitchen cabinet will they gather daily dust? Also, notice it says "clothes" not "cloths."

Okay, okay! I know that companies have to put all kinds of warnings and directions in with their products because people have done some silly things--like stick their hand under the lawnmower while it is running or pour liquids down the back of the television set. I just wanted to bring a little chuckle into your lives.

Moments

My brother-in-law Craig sent us this photo of my nephew Cleighton who is serving on a Navy carrier somewhere in the Pacific Ocean. I know the moment he had to leave his wife behind was extremely difficult. I am so proud of Cleighton for choosing to serve the United States of America in this manner. Every man and woman in the US military is very much appreciated by me.

At my TOPS Club (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meeting on Wednesday night my group surprised me by having a Goodbye Salad Bar. My husband went with me that night and we showed them our pictures of Africa. While we were doing that the ladies got things out in preparation. I don't know exactly how they pulled it all together but it was a huge surprise to me and a lot of fun. I won't be back to a TOPS meeting until September. This was a special moment for me.

The countdown clock continues ticking ever so quickly as the moment of our departure for Namibia draws nearer. The moment we board the small airplane in Walla Walla, WA on Tuesday evening the adventure begins. After spending the night at a motel near SeaTac Airport we'll board the United flight to Washington, D.C. where after a couple hour layover we'll board the South African flight for Johannesburg. About 16 hours later we'll land, be on the ground for a couple more hours and then on to Windhoek, Namibia.

The reality of this is that for over 24 hours we won't have the chance to change clothes. Now wouldn't you like to share that moment with us?

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Las Mananitas, Hermiston, Oregon

I've read a blog of a man who rates the various restaurants he eats at and while I'm not going to start doing that, there is one I'd like to tell you about.

Las Mananitas is a family-owned Mexican restaurant in Hermiston, Oregon. If you don't know where Hermiston is, get a map of Oregon and look in the Northeast part, almost by the Columbia River. Hermiston is near Pendleton where the famous Pendleton Round Up is held every September--not that I go!!

When my sister visits from Fairfield, California she loves to go to Las Mananitas and on her very recent visit we went twice. The Sopa de Albondagas (I may be misspelling that) is very, very good. In fact, I've never had anything there I didn't like. When someone asks Jeanne what her favorite Mexican restaurant is she always answers "this little place in Oregon that makes the best Mexican food ever!"

So next time you are driving through Hermiston and you come in from Interstate 84 and you pass the giant water tower with the watermelon painted on the side, start looking to your right for the Cornerstone Plaza because that is where Las Mananitas is located.

You won't regret it! Tell Esteban that you read this on the internet on a blog written by a lady from Hermiston, Oregon and proud of it.

Monday, May 12, 2008

What was the deal?????

I have never had so much trouble posting a blog. I just do a new one, click on Publish Post, and there it is. White lettering on a black background. But noooooo, not this last time. I had to redo it and redo it and redo it. I had to change all the lettering to white...which meant I couldn't see what I was changing unless I highlighted it. I do not know what went wrong but I hope it doesn't happen this time.

Gross, Disgusting and Yucky...Read at your own risk!

So what exactly do you think the dirtiest thing in your house is? Many people might say the toilet. And according to some cleaning shows I've seen on TV that might be the truth. But generally speaking most people clean their toilet at least once a week. I mean, how bad can it be? Pets drink from toilets. (Now that is gross!!)

The place I'm talking about is a place you cannot see, unless you hold a mirror and look at the reverse image. I'm talking about your.......DISHWASHER!!! How in the world does a dishwasher which has detergent in it every time you use it get so gross? If I knew the answer for that I'd let you in on it, but I don't.

Get a paper towel or a cloth and wipe along the front part of the inside of your unit. You would not be able to see this unless you are young and/or a contortionist so you could stick your head inside the dishwasher. I am neither young nor a contortionist. I took my dish washing sponge and ran it along the edge and oh the gross brow
n stuff that is sticking there!! Go ahead, do it now and you'll see what I mean.

By the time I took this picture I had cleaned out quite a bit of the gross brown stuff. On the right you see my husband Aaron taking off the screen at the top of the door and we cleaned that out also. Then we went to Safeway where I purchased a bottle of stuff specifically designed to clean out dishwashers made by Jetdry. I ran that through in an empty dishwasher and things look and feel so much nicer now. This was not the first time we have cleaned out the dishwasher and we've had it for about 10 years. So if you have never done this and you've had the machine for many years be prepared for grossness.

And now for some GREAT NEWS!! Our 9-year old granddaughter Karen participated in a spelling bee at the Walla Walla (WA) Balloon Stampede. She placed 3rd in the Third Grade part of the Bee and although she was disappointed to not have won first place (and to have won a laptop computer) we thought she did great. She received a gift certificate from a local bookstore.





Thursday, May 8, 2008

Crazy Week

Last week I worked all week and I thought this week I would get to stay at home more. But it was not meant to be. Tuesday the library assistant from the school where I used to work called me asking if I could work since she had a serious leg problem happening and needed to get to a doctor. Wednesday I subbed half a day at the Christian School where I volunteer and then went to the school where I was formerly employed to finish the day. Today (Thursday) I'm at the high school library until about noon and then I'll go back to the elementary school library to shelve books. Tomorrow I'll be at the middle school library in the morning. Ah, retirement.

This week I lost 3.8 pounds and I am very happy about that. I didn't eat things with sugar in them, like cake, cookies, donuts, etc. I believe this really helped. It is my plan to continue with this choice for awhile. I did it once for 9 months--no sugar. So I know it is possible.

I read a blog this morning about a lady who walks 6 miles a day and observes and takes pictures. She records how much money she finds--pennies, dimes. My grandfather used to find money when he walked--like $10 bills. I admire this lady who walks 6 miles a day. It'd take me more than 3 hours. Perhaps to supplement my retirement income I should start walking 6 miles a day. I might find 15 to 20 cents. Invest it wisely and in a few years I'd have $1.00.

Random thoughts from a random person.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Comments, Cool Whip and Cream Cheese

Okay...so none of those things have anything in common except that they all start with "C".

If any of you have read my blog recently you will see that I deleted one. It made me feel better to write it out and now the necessity for having it posted is gone.

I had written about being 100 pounds overweight and how I hate it but feel helpless to change. But...I know that I can change because I don't have to depend just upon myself. "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me." So is it Jesus' fault I'm overweight? No, it most certainly isn't. Jesus speaks to me in a "still, small voice" or through a friend, or through my family members and I choose to ignore that quite often. If I wouldn't get defensive when my husband says something that would certainly help. But those inward feelings arise and my attitude is "you can't tell me what to eat." Ahh, that is so bad.

So I'll carry on, keep exercising, keep thinking about what I'm eating and hopefully get rid of some of this excess poundage I'm carrying around. Isn't it sad to think of all the people in the world who may get one meal a day and yet I can eat like there is no tomorrow? Makes you think, doesn't it?

Comments: An anonymous person commented on a blog from way, way back. Thank you.
Cool Whip: It'll never taste like the real whipped cream.
Cream Cheese: Yummy!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Driving with my daughter

My daughter is a secret shopper, but....shhh....don't tell anyone. She has two differents kinds of jobs to do for this company. In one she pretends that she is looking to buy a phone or open an account at a bank. Based upon the information she sends to the company the business is graded on how they are doing at customer service, etc. Hopefully this information when relayed to the business she has gone in to will help them with better customer service. The other job she does is called an audit. For this one she announces that she is there to do an audit and then takes pictures of how the business (a gas station) displays their signage.

So on Friday April 25 we went to Milton Freewater where Aaron babysat and I went along on the drive to LaGrande, Oregon. We left about 1:30 p.m. and arrived back at her house at about 5:30 p.m. The really nice thing was the chance to ride with Larisa and carry on a conversation. We talked about many things and reminisced. It is wonderful to have her be more than a daughter, but my friend also.

We are also rejoicing that Jesus helped the splinter in Paul's hand come out so easily. For a picture of the splinter go to www.rizaroni73.blogspot.com. The doctors couldn't find it but Jesus knew right where it was.

If anyone out there reads this and knows how to remove something off of a Myspace page, please post a comment. I have two countdown clocks going for our return to Namibia and I need to get rid of one and can't figure out how.

I'm dealing with the aftermath of a migraine so I'm not thinking too clearly. So my blog isn't too interesting today, I'm afraid.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Reminiscing

Today we watched the wedding video of our daughter and Paul from almost 14 years ago. Larisa and the children spent Friday night with us. I'd come across the video and asked if she wanted it. She did and we decided to watch it.

There was my son, Nolan and his future wife, Maryanne walking down the aisle together. Nolan was getting ready to head of to Oregon State University and Maryanne was beginning her senior year of high school.

Aaron's parents were there, being escorted down the aisle by Aaron and by Nolan. I have to admit that it brought tears to my eyes. I don't think Karen (age 9) really understood that.

Then there was my sister Jeanne and I singing "Sunrise, Sunset". Oh it was beautiful! I have to admit that she is the better singer, but we have always had great harmony--she's the soprano and I'm the alto. Then the beautiful bride Larisa comes down the aisle on Aaron's arm while I waited at the end of the aisle. Paul (with a full head of hair) picks her up and the ceremony begins.

When it was time for the kiss, my nephew Cleighton was who 9 at the time, rolled his eyes and smiled, not sure of where he should look. Too funny! Now Cleighton is 23, married, and in the Navy serving on the USS Ronald Reagan. How time has flown.

As the camera panned the audience I could point out several people who have since died. In the video they are alive forever. It's kind of like thinking of JFK and always picturing him as the young man he was when he was killed. If he were still alive he'd be in his late 80s. Or Elvis...he'd be really old also. But in our minds they are forever young.

I find it amusing when in an obituary in our local paper the picture will be of the person when they were in their 20s or 30s and if they died in their 80s you know they looked nothing like the picture shown.

There are many things about getting older that are not so fun. It is discouraging to see the wrinkles in your face and neck and know there is really nothing you can do about it. Yes, I put the products on my face, hoping to hold off time for as long as possible. But I know that time is going to win. When you sit down for too long it hurts to get up. The knees don't behave like they did when you were young.

A few years ago Karen asked me if I would be alive when she grew up. I reminded her of how her mother's grandmother is still alive so there is a very good chance that I'll still be alive when she is in her 30s.

Ahhh...reminiscing. Memories are so precious so go out and make some good memories with your family today.

Friday, April 4, 2008

From 0 to 60 in the blink of an eye.....





Some pictures of my childhood--me and my sister Jeanne. My mom liked to make us dresses alike and we didn't mind that when we were young.

This merry-go-round was made by our dad out of an old car axle. That merry-go-round was the fastest you've ever seen. Several of our playmates threw up after riding on it. Oh, did we have fun!!
This picture was taken of Jeanne and me shortly before Aaron and I became engaged. Oh to be this thin again.


Here is a picture of Aaron and me on our wedding day, August 23, 1970. We are now a little older, a little wiser and a little bigger.


This picture was taken on board a cruise ship to Alaska in June of 2006. Shortly after returning home we took our first missions trip...to Botswana. Then in 2007 we went to Namibia and we are returning this year in June.
I was born April 1, 1948 to Cecil and Delight Goodwin, my sister Jeanne was born into the family in 1951, I graduated from high school in 1966, married Aaron in 1970, had a daughter named Larisa in 1973, a son named Nolan in 1976, and retired in 2006. I have a great son-in-law, Paul; a great daughter-in-law, Maryanne, and 5 beautiful grandchildren ...Karen, Curtis, Sabina, Addison and Emmaleese.
The years have flown by. Aaron and I have served Jesus faithfully all of our married life. We are thankful for the opportunities that have been made available to us.

Monday, March 24, 2008

Emmaleese Hope

Emmaleese Hope and daddy, Nolan. Emmaleese is one and Nolan is .....well, not one. Just add 30 years.
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Addison Faith

Sabina Grace

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Finality of Leaving the 50's

Twenty-two days from today (March 10) I will no longer be in my 50s (or is it 50's) . I'm pretty good at grammar but never sure about the apostrophe with a number. Nothing belongs to the 50 so perhaps it should be 50s--my 50s.

My 10s I remember very little of. In fact I have no memories before 1st grade and that is sketchy. I remember skipping a word during reading group because it caught in my throat and the teacher told me the word. I knew the word but it just wouldn't come out. I also remember a little girl wearing pink undies who got a spanking in the classroom (that'd never happen now!!) and recess time being chased by boys and HATING it.

The year I was 10 my parents took my sister Jeanne and I to Southern California to go to Disneyland--which was only 3 years old at that time. We traveled south from Oregon in our little gray Volkswagen. If I correctly remember my parents went with $100 for the trip. That was also the trip I received my first bee sting..while riding in the Volkswagen.

My teen years were traumatic. My mother made me practice the piano daily, get good grades and dust the house once a week. Now don't you think that is just a little too much to ask.

My twenties ended my college life--quitting after 3 years, and then I met the man of my dreams. By the time I was 28 I had 2 children and so I spent the next 18 years raising them. They turned out pretty good if you ask me.

When I was about to hit 40 I thought, "I don't want to be fat and forty."
When I turned 50 I thought, "I don't want to be fat and fifty."
And now that I'm about to be sixty I'm thinking, "I don't want to be fat and sixty."

There was a period of time in my 50s when I got skinny but unfortunately that didn't last. So maybe in my 60s I'll be able to get skinny again. I will admit that my idea of being skinny now is a whole lot different then when I was in my 20s. Then it was weighing in the 130s, now it is the 170s.

Turning 60 means I'm a senior citizen. It means that applying for Social Security is only 2 years away. Turning 60 means I have 30-40 years left to live. Turning 60 means that my life has been blessed by having Jesus in my heart, my being married to Aaron for 37 years, by having a daughter about to turn 35 and having a son who is 31. It means that I have 5 wonderful grandchildren...Karen, Curtis, Sabina, Addison and Emmaleese. Turning 60 means I have good friends who will come to my birthday celebration where my daughter and son-in-law will cook a wonderful meal for us. Turning 60 means I'm alive and so blessed to be healthy.

Hallelujah!! I'm turning SIXTY!!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

I'd Like a LIttle Cheese With My Whine

Why can't other drivers read my mind and know what I intend to do??

A few weeks ago--and yes, it still bugs me--I left my home and drove to the stop sign on SW 15th in our fair city. This is something I've been doing for the 10+years we've been living on SW 16th. I pulled up to the stop sign perhaps a little faster than normal and a lady in a white car driving down SW 15th where it intersects with Joseph (you know who you are!) ((if she reads blogs)) stopped in the middle of the intersection, rolled down her window and said something to me. I have NO idea what she said but I imagine she was telling me off thinking that I wasn't going to stop. I would like to let this nice lady know that in the 10 years I've been stopping at this stop sign I have never run the sign and have no intentions of doing so now.

Then just recently I had to pull out into the middle lane of the main road through town. I waited until the traffic had ceased from my left, looked to the right (you have to look WAY to the right), saw that I had an opportunity to pull into the center lane. Oregon law says that when you pull into the center lane you wait until there is an opportunity to move into the right lane. (My son taught me that when he took his driving test.) I stopped, looked into my rear view mirror and discovered that someone was behind me waiting to make a left turn. Someone in a red SUV went by me and gave me a long honk thinking that I was going to pull into the traffic. Honest! I wasn't going to do that. I don't want to have an accident any more than you do.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Football Fever (but I haven't caught it)

Well.....yesterday was the LONG anticipated Super Bowl here in the USA. Although I understand the basic rules of football I don't really enjoy watching it, but since the Super Bowl signals that is is almost over for the season (there is the Pro-Bowl next Sunday) I can watch part of it. And there were a couple of very cute commercials.

Sometimes when the last show of Survivor or Amazing Race is on Aaron will come to the computer and discover who wins, since the program is already over on the East Coast. He'll ask me if I want to know and I let him know that "No, I don't want to know who wins."

So yesterday quite a while before the Super Bowl was over I was at the computer. At the point I was figuring out my scheme the Patriots were ahead of the NY Giants and it looked like they'd go all the way. I thought about it for awhile and figured out a possible ending score. Hmm, if the Giants got this and the Patriots got that the score would be 17-14 with the Giants winning. I went back to the den and told Aaron that it was on the internet that the Giants had won 17-14. Now obviously it was impossible for the internet to state this as the game was being played live in Arizona in our time zone. The Pats were still ahead at this point. There was no way the Giants would come back. Aaron just grinned at me and knew I was making the whole thing up. But turns out I was right... and the NY Giants won 17-14--my exact prediction.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Important Items

Here are some VERY important things you should or shouldn't do when traveling.

#1. Never, never, never throw away your boarding passes because you may have to prove that you were actually on the airplane. Having the itinerary from the travel agent isn't enough. Having a copy of the paper ticket showing all destinations isn't enough. No NO NO NO...you must MUST MUST have the boarding pass. So we got cheated out of several thousand miles from our flight to Africa last year.

#2. Don't put anything of value into a suitcase because that suitcase might end up staying in the country you just left. Yes, we still have a suitcase in Africa--either in Namibia or South Africa. If the suitcase had been empty having the airline lose it wouldn't have been such a big problem. As it was Aaron had to buy a whole bunch of underwear, and other assorted clothes. And guess what South Africa Airlines wants to prove we were on the flight. A COPY OF THE TICKET!!! And guess where our ticket info is? In Rapid City, SD. I called United today and the man who was so nice to me didn't seem to understand that I wasn't trying to get them to give me the airmiles (we'd been rejected twice because I didn't keep the aforementioned boarding passes but just wanted to know if they might still have the ticket info I sent them.) Sooooo.....

#3. Make a copy of your ticket info, make copies of EVERYTHING and probably twice because you might have to mail something somewhere or fax it across the Atlantic Ocean, spending money because you hope to get your suitcase back with the clothes you've lost but already bought new ones to replace them.

Do I sound frustrated? I am.

And in just over 5 months we'll get back on a SAA jet and fly to Africa again. And believe you me...I will NOT throw any boarding passes away until I know we've been credited with the airmiles.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Who in the world reads this???


My sister asked me, "Who reads your blogs?" That is a good question and one that I cannot supply an answer to. I told her that I frequently click "next blog" to see what other people in the world are writing about. Many I can't read although I recognize the language as German, French, Spanish, etc. After spending time in Africa where many people speak 3-5 languages I show my ignorance in that I can only speak one language. English!

Occasionally when I click "next blog" I get into blogs I'd rather not see. And sometimes those blogs don't have "next blog" at the top so I have to backtrack and then go forward again hoping to avoid the naughty pictures or language. I have flagged a couple of sites as inappropriate. I think this blogger site should be family friendly.

So "who in the world reads this?" Is it you....someone in the USA, the UK, Sweden, France, Botswana, Namibia?