Sunday, September 30, 2007

Thought of the Day

The ABC’s of Life

Accept differences

Be kind

Count your blessings


Express thanks


Give freely

Harm no one

Imagine more

Jettison anger

Keep confidences

Love truly

Master something

Nurture hope

Open your mind

Pack lightly

Quell rumors


Seek wisdom

Touch hearts


Value truth

Win graciously


Yearn for peace

Zealously support a worthy cause


Friday, September 28, 2007

Crop for the Cure

I think that most of us have been effected one way or another by Breast Cancer. My first dealings with it was when a girlfriend was diagnosed back in Texas, she was at the time trying to ween her son from breast feeding. I'm sorry to say that Tonya fought valiantly but sadly lost her 3 ½ year battle with the disease shortly before we got here (Ellsworth AFB, SD) in August 2003. We were neighbors in Texas, our daughters played together, went to ballet lessons together and even went to speech therapy together.

A dear friend of mine who was one of the very first friends that I made during our assignment in Maine 17 years ago was diagnosed just over a year ago with Breast Cancer. She was never one to ever mince words or to stand by the sidelines, she sought and took aggressive treatment and is now a 1 year survivor and I'm happy to report is cancer free! My girlfriend Robin reminds me that life is precious and me must do what we can to live life to it's fullest. To tell those around us about the importance of getting mammograms.

So here I am, hosting a Crop for the Cure. I hope to honor my friends and to raise money for Breast Cancer research and awareness. I plan on using my culinary skills to make a beautiful gourmet lunch for the ladies that attend (ssshhh were going to eat off of real dishes too- they just don't know it yet). We'll have many terrific door prizes and a gift basket raffle. I'm charging $25 per person for this event...I hope to make it a HUGE success! I'll be designing some projects for the ladies and getting them together in kits. I look forward to spending some quality time with this dynamic group of women! There's a wonderful woman Kristi is her name over at who has a blog please check it out. She talks about her journey with breast cancer. Kristi is also doing the Walk for the Cure. My friend Theresa did this last year and walked over 600 miles. It's such a worth while charity, please give to it if you can.

Rubber Stamps and Scrapbooking Supplies

As an avid stamper, I adore many different lines of rubber stamps. One of my favorites is Stampin Up. I have a friend who sells (her name is Peg) and I tell ya...this woman does the neatest things with stamps! For just over 2 years now I've been in one or another of her stamp groups and have not been able to make it...but recently I had Stamp group meet up in my home. Peg had THE neatest items to show us (now I want them all). But the best thing is that they can all be used in scrapbooking too!

Now why am I writing about this? I feel that everyone should take a stamping or scrapbooking class, to get back in touch with some techniques and to see new products being used. I'm all over those water color crayons (which will be my next purchase). LOVE love love those! The total ease of working with them was remarkable. I have water colors in a tube, water colors in dried cake form and water color pencils. But these water color crayons were THE easiest things to work with!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Quote of the Day

"You can do anything if you have enthusiasm."  

~Henry Ford 

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Will it Blend?
I first became aware of Blendtec through my husband and children. What a total crack up! There's this guy in a lab coat with and industrial blender grinding up stuff...needless to say it was right up my alley! So when I get this e-mail from Cricut News today you can imagine how much I laughed. So the link is up above- go check it out and prepare to laugh!

Learned Behaviours

What are learned behaviours? selfishness, cruelty and the one that gets me shaking my head a lot these days... arrogance. Arrogance is a lead in for other 2 bad behaviours to take root. When I see this kind of behaviour in the spouses of commanders it makes me take a step back. There's been one woman in particular that takes being the wife of a commander a step too far and frankly she's just over the top. It is as if she has this "need" to be the constant center of attention. If she could only see herself as her peers see her maybe her behavior would stop. It's no wonder that the members from that particular squadrons spouses group are the way the are- acting as if they're members of some elite sorority and how everyone wants to be their friend (ugh). I wish that there would be more teaching of compassion, harmony, charity and volunteering within the military community. Most of the time we work with younger wives, ones that are newly married and ones that have never been this far away from home before. We are their military spouse role models, we're here to give them guidance, to help them be the best person that they can be. To be supportive of their husbands' career choices and the really hard to cope with separation during a deployment. I take my responsibility seriously I treat it like I do my volunteering...I give my all to these spouses and am always there to lend a helping hand. That no one person need to be made to feel left out or worse yet to be made to feel that if your husband isn't an aviator that you aren't worth getting to know. God has given me a purpose in life, I know that by being the best person that I can be, to be there for spouses who are new to the area and need a friend, to be there for those who need someone to talk to and to sit with them to let them know that they are not alone, to help to get them through a rough day. To show compassion and how to truly be a friend.

So, did I sound preachy? I probably did. But this is something that has been bothering me for quite some time and I really needed to get it off of my chest.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Something to think about...

 "Ability is what you're capable of doing.

Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines

how well you do it."

~ Lou Holtz

Quote of the day

It is the province of knowledge to speak and it is the privilege of wisdom to listen"
~Oliver Wendell Holmes

School and my children...a look at real life

Our children are the future, there's no doubt about that. What we teach them about the little things adds up to big things. Showing kindness, love and compassion for others is one of the BIG things in my book. So when my son wanted to help his best friend with a project in one of his classes, well I smiled...until I realized that he was being asked to bring his Air Soft pistol to school. Immediate red flag right there. I don't mind helping out a friend but there are procedures to follow. So I had the boys do the right thing and have the school call me, I'll bring in the item, hand it over to school security and then they could call me after the class was over and I'd come back to the school and pick it up. The boys DID do it right and I had to bring in the item.

My son continues to amaze me. He's growing up into a fine young man with a heart so big. He's an honor roll student who wants to see his best friend achieve more. You see, his best friend is at best a C level student- no there's nothing wrong with that but my son sees so much more potential in his friend for good Andrew says "if he'd only try". Our son Andrew is only 15, yet has gotten his drivers license a week before school got out, got first job this summer, and has his first car. This is a young man that makes plans, makes goals and has dreams of being an Air Force Officer and an aviator like his Dad. I have no doubts that our son will achieve his goals!

I can't really talk about one child without the other coming to my mind. Our daughter Hannah is a remarkable child. When you take the word "gifted" I think it has her picture by it. She's a gifted child in so many ways; gifted in the art of compassion for others, gifted in the ease of how mathematics just come to her , gifted in the way she wants to lift others up in their understanding of science and math. Tell me...what 11 year old would do a HUGE report on Atomic Physics? I mean really? She knows everything there is to know about a scientist named Enrico Fermi- from his work in physics to his personal life. She told me yesterday that she wished that he could have lived long enough to see the advances that have been made in medicine and the treatment of cancer. Yesterday she cracked me up "hey Mom" yes Hannah "do you know what Saturday is?" yes, it's the 6 month anniversary of us being here in our new home "besides that Mom...what else is it?" Well your Dad and Granny Bette will be back home "besides THAT?!" no sweetheart what else? "It's Enrico Fermi's birthday!, he would have been 107 years old!". Picture me trying to be excited for my child in animated humor...Wow sweetie that's really something! I wonder what my little girl is going to be when she grows up...her college choices are MIT and Harvard, she's not picked one over the other but I'm leaning more towards MIT :-)

I'm glad that my children have learned the art of compassion and can think past their own needs and help their friends strive to be the best that they can be academically and socially.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Quote of the Day

"Mid pleasures and palaces though we may roam,  

Be it ever so humble, there's no place like home."  


~ John Howard Payne's what happens when you make other plans

OH how that saying rings true for me :-) I know that I've said this at least a hundred times...who would have ever thought that I'd be so darn busy? Every single day there's something going on...someone to see or something that has to be scheduled. Today is no different. To be honest, I wish that I had a little more free time.

Here's something that I haven't mentioned but will husband is having eye surgery today. Yup he's getting that corrective surgery so he no longer has to wear glasses or contacts. When it comes to poking in your thanks! I hate going to the eye doctor and getting that glaucoma test (it whigs me out). Obviously I don't wear contact lenses and I only have to use reading glasses when I'm tired. My husband has been talking about having this corrective eye surgery for years and now he's finally getting it done. I'm happy for my husband, but Eeewwww! Surgery on my eyeballs is just one of those things that will NEVER happen! My mother-in-law is there with him (they're in Colorado), she'll be taking care of her eldest son for a week and driving him back home this week. I think that she relishes this time with her son and likes the fact that she is truly needed.

Meanwhile back on the Ranch...I've been dealing with situations pertaining to school aged teenagers. Andrew lost his cell phone somewhere in the house. I've been looking for it for a week now with no luck. I gave him the "talk" about not being responsible for his belongings and so forth, offered a $20 cash reward to Hannah to help to find her brothers phone. She had no sympathy for him in that matter what so ever so I thought that offering her a cash reward would bring her into the hunt. Are you ready for where it was found? I shake my head...Andrew found it, in was in a pocket of his dress slacks for JROTC. Yup he put on his pants and there it was, LOL! Dead as a door nail but there it was. Got it plugged into the charger for 20 minutes before he and Hannah left for school. But the good part is that now my teenage son has a shockingly CLEAN bedroom. Hannah's bedroom on the other hand (insert eye roll here)...well lets not go there right now.

I had the kids prepare dinner last night. I put the chicken into the hot skillet and let the kids take it from there. I let them know that they were cooking dinner. What was dinner? Chicken Tacos. Not once did I go back into the kitchen to see what was going on. I let them know that they could call me in the phone intercom and ask me questions but the rest was totally on them. They did a pretty good job at getting the meal together. Now for the other up. Apparently they didn't hear the part about cleaning up after themselves. So here I am this morning with a kitchen that needs to be scrubbed down. They made a little bit of a mess but nothing that isn't easy to clean. I've got a dishwasher full of dishes plus a 10 inch deep sink full (only 1 side though). So once the first load is done, I'll unload and fill it again. I'll try them again on making dinner this week- this time making it perfectly clear about cleaning up after themselves in the kitchen.

Now for the repairman from Jeld-Wen windows to show up. I'm not very happy with the kind of customer service I've received from that company. Especially when the 2 people I'm dealing with (the repairman and the customer service agent at the company) are ignorant to my needs. We will have been here in this home for 6 months on the 30th- and still no screens on the 2 front windows (a total for 4 screens) plus having a damaged screen door for the sliding class door- ugh! Well this week since it's been so unseasonably warm I've had to open the kitchen window- only to discover that the screening is not attached at the bottom of the screen frame- nice! So now I have to deal with those dorks a while longer for them to fix that. What really chaps me is that I was told "uh yeah I've had your window screens for about 6 weeks now but was waiting on the screen door to arrive before I came out again". AUGH! Like it would have broke the bank for you to make 2 service calls. I could have really used to have my screens so I could have opened the windows versus having to use the A/C to cool my house. The windows from this company are nice but the customer service is the worst! I didn't pick out the windows so I didn't have a say is which company they would come from but I do have to say that the two past homes we bought had Anderson Windows and their customer service was top notch! I had a problem they had someone in a quick manner at my house at a time that would work for me. They were professional and didn't put their knee through a window seat-Which reminds me I need to call the drywall people and the repair guy for the fiberglass bathtub. Where are these people? They should have been here weeks ago to fix this stuff that I had on our fix it list when we moved in here!

I have a list a mile long of people I need to call- I've got to call all of the ladies from Lunch bunch and see who is coming and who is not coming, plus calling the repair people and figure out when they are going to come out to my house. I need to finish the laundry clean towels would be nice., vacuum the house, get the guest room ready for my m-i-l. My list goes on and on and on. I think that I'll have some more coffee before I do anything more :-)

Well I JUST got a call from the high school...need to run out there for something (I"ll give you all the scoop on that one later). It's interesting to say the least.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

quote of the day

Carry out random acts of kindness, with no expectation of reward, safe in the knowledge that one day someone might do the same for you.”
~Diana Spencer

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Coffee is my friend

Most people would not consider 6:30 am "sleeping in" but it sure is for me! I feel refreshed and renewed. Of course there's that wonderful mug of Swiss Chocolate Almond coffee I'm drinking- that always helps to start the day in a happy way! It's like a grown up version of hot chocolate- no whipped cream, just some half and half to make it creamy and smooth.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

My Cookbook Nook: Cookbooks

My Cookbook Nook: Cookbooks

Cooking makes me Happy!

I forgot to add in some of the details about yesterday...we were booted from the 20th and told that we could have our function on the 27th due to some sort of over sight on the part of the club. The Air Force Ball is on Saturday and frankly it's because of it that we can't have our function tonight. It's frustrating but I'll get over it. Part of being married to someone in the military is having to be flexible...I'm bending over backwards on this one. My other issues are; not getting the costs of our menu items. I've been dealing with this for months! I made arrangements for this meal back in July and didn't get a price on it until Wednesday- the afternoon before the event, AUGH!!! Then there's being lied to, I really dislike liars. Tell the truth, it's much easier to keep up the story if it's TRUE. It especially erks me when someone lies to cover their butt, it's such a sorry excuse. Just confess that you screwed up and move on, no lies needed.

Working at the Thrift Shop all of the great ladies who volunteer their time was just what I needed! I can not believe how much work we were able to accomplish the store looks fantastic! I left feeling energized and most of all...I was HAPPY!

So what do I do when I'm happy? I cook! Okay so I've been wanting to cook Indian food- I've been craving it for a few days now. So I had to get some special Indian spices in order to create these fantastic dishes. So where do I go to buy them? Certainly not Albertson's or Safeway that's for sure! I drive down town to Curry Masala a wonderful little Indian restaurant in Rapid City...oh my gosh it smelled like heaven in there! A wonderful gentleman helped me to select the spices on my shopping list...I came home and made 2 different Indian dishes and both were out of this world YUMMY! I'm going to bring some to the store tomorrow and share it with who ever is working. Yes it's spicy but not overly hot spicy like some Tex-Mex foods can be. This was aromatically spicy- cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, garam masala, channa masala and fresh grated ginger, garlic and more! I'll be sharing the recipes on my food blog

Dealing with disappointment

I was so bothered and upset yesterday that I couldn't blog about it. It seemed that yesterday was to be filled with disappointment. But I suppose it's all in how you (me in this case)looks at it.

The Air Force Ball is on Saturday not that this has anything to do with me personally but effects my Thursday evening plans. I get a call yesterday from the Dakotas Club letting me know that we do not have the room for our function that we have made our reservations for the 27th. Okay so what do I do now? Apparently there was some oversight on the club managers part I know that we made the reservation for the banquet room for the 20th. My word against his...especially when he never got me a contract so basically I'm screwed. Thank the Lord my dear friend (and current OSC 1st VP) was at my home for scrapbook group (another story in it's self). As I'm standing there with egg on my face thinking...great! I've got to contact 50 people and let them know what's going on...most who have had to get baby sitters and make arrangements for child care. I felt bad, really bad. It's been this on going struggle with the club to get us prices on anything...and finally I got prices $8.oo for vegetarian kabobs and $10.50 for chicken kabobs. So he gets me prices after I've asked him a dozen times, had the VP get on him about prices at least that many times, nice! I'm not one to have my husband fight my battles, I deal with Tri-care (military health care program for dependants) and other military related issues all on my own. But I've hit a brick wall and am not getting anywhere with the club. We have a standing agreement...our group will host a function at the club every 3rd Thursday, we are guaranteed MOOLA and what happens...we get the shaft that's what happens. It's as if we aren't given the priority that we deserve. WE are a guaranteed paycheck and we get treated as if we do not matter. Enough is enough...I called in the big guns on this one and am getting commanders and deputy commanders involved. I've had it with the lack of communication and the lack of common courtesy. I'm so thankful for my girlfriends who helped me to get people notified that our function is now on the 27th. There's Kim who has helped me through my terrible day, there's Irene that sent out the mass e-mails to the club members, the squadron commanders spouses that got the information out to their people down to my dear sweet friend Heidi who has this way about her. I love talking to Heidi about life and that thing we call the Air Force. I was pretty much fed up with being lied to from the club, felt like a failure because I couldn't come right out and be a bitch and get in the face of the club manager (as much as I really wanted to be like that I just couldn't do it) and I was feeling rather overwhelmed with the entire week that I had laid out for myself.

So in the end I have this....things happen for a reason. We may not know why (at the time) they happen but as the day and event unfolds it becomes clearer as to why. I think that God knows things about us that not even we know...until he shows it to us. He answers prayer in such a way as to be mysterious and when you look back upon it you realize that is some off the wall way your prayer or prayers were answered. Obviously it's not always in a manner in which we think it is an answer to your prayers but when we take the time to sit back and reflect on the matter or really was the Lord dealing with it in his own way. I think that God has a sense of humor, at least when he deals with me :-) He has given me some of the best and loyal friends I could have ever asked for, ones to help me through the rough patches and ones to share the best of times with. I cried my eyes out several times yesterday but through it all, I knew that somehow everything would work out.

Scrapbook group...oh wasn't that one a joke. When you get 5 people e-mailing you that they will be there...and no one shows up, that's disappointing. But in the end it did work out for the best because we ended up having to make oodles of phone calls. So as it was having no one come was a good thing after all.

I couldn't deal with calling and talking to the club manager and the food manager so I had Kim do it. So what did I do? Cooking is such a HUGE stress reliever for me so I made a couple of quiches! An asparagus & onion quiche and a bacon & onion quiche- oh my word they are so YUMMY!!! Why is it that things that give others stress (like cooking) I find relieve my tensions? I could have cooked up a storm yesterday but left it to being 2 quiches instead. Maybe it's the chopping up the of veggies with a very sharp knife then searing them in a very hot pan, LOL!

Today I'm going into the Thrift Shop to be around people that make me happy. I'm bringing the quiches that I made yesterday and we're going to have a picnic style lunch with real plates and flat ware, real napkins and so forth. I'm going to let them know just how much they are appreciated and me. Because if there is anything that I really know about in the's that you should let those around you know how much they mean to you and show it in your own special way :-)

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


So there I was...sitting in front of my computer trying to get the handouts made for the rules and the games of bingo and my computer freezes up on me. I was beside myself! I'm having my husband look into this because it freezes up on me a lot these days. Maybe I'm doing something wrong...who knows. So the spouse jumps in and makes the handouts for me.

Okay after that 3 hour fiasco is straightened out I realize that I need to get the bingo cards packaged in groups of 5 to hand out to the members. Get this I had to get my paper trimmer out and cut them apart! I still don't have a firm count on how many folks are going to show up but hey...I know that it's at least 50 people and that's a good number to start with. But since I am also tying this in with a canned food drive I'm giving out an extra package of bingo cards with every 5 cans of food donated to the food pantry. IN the end I grouped together 180 packages of bingo cards, I plan on getting more together today.

The prizes are fantastic and I hope that I win the plug in cooler! I really want one of those things for us, it would be great for traveling and backyard parties.

Scrapbook group meets today. I've been so darn busy with things that I didn't even think about getting some stuff together to work on- ugh! SO I'm going to find some items and pull them together to have something to work on. I promised my friend Kim that I'd make us some lunch. I'm torn between quiche or French Onion soup (made from scratch of course). The ladies will be here in an hour...I better go scrounge something up to work on.

Monday, September 17, 2007

In the groove!

I spent the day having fun...first it was visit with my girlfriend Kim (she's such a treasure) then it was stamping with friends (we made the cutest little cards) then it was lunch with my husband. After lunch we dropped off some of the Bingo prizes for Thursday nights function then off to do errands together in town.

It's official, all of our cars are now registered in South Dakota. We became official residents not too long ago. Then after the court house with the car registration we were off to drop off stuff at the Salvation Army (things from our end of season clean out from the Thrift Shop), a trip to Lowe's to get some wood to make some shelving in the storage/utility room, then to Hancock Fabrics so I can get some material to make a window treatment.

I've not been in the "sewing groove" for quite some time but tonight I got it bad! I made my new window treatment and now to get the hardware installed. I can't do that since the power tools are being used by my husband at the moment. I don't want to break his stride as he is really making some serious progress in the utility room. The hardware can wait until tomorrow...then I'll string everything up and make it look pretty in the formal dining room. I chose Crimson- never had any sort of window treatment in that color and decided that I wanted to try something new and different. No more country cutesy for me, I want a more sophisticated look going on in our home.

Sunday, September 16, 2007

I'm Invisible

Some of my friends might not notice it but I've been feeling a bit overwhelmed with all of the things I have on my plate right now. I"ve got such a busy schedule this coming week. My dear sweet friend Kim knows me so well and she sent me this lovely story (thanks Kim). It hit the spot, it's how I've been feeling about all of the things I do...for my family and the volunteering that I do. Read this story and I promise you, you too will feel uplifted.

I'm invisible.
It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, "Can't you see I'm on the phone?" Obviously not. No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor, or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at all.
I'm invisible.

Some days I am only a pair of hands, nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this? Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, "What time is it?" I'm a satellite guide to answer, "What number is the Disney Channel?" I'm a car to order, "Right around 5:30 , please."

I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and the eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated summa cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going she's going... she's gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in. I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself as I looked down at my out-of-style dress; it was the only thing I could find that was clean. My unwa hed hair was pulled up in a banana clip and I was afraid I could actually smell peanut butter in it.

I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, "I brought you this." It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe . I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: "To Charlotte , with admiration for the greatness of what you are building when no one sees."

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:

No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names.

These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished.

They made great sacrifices and expected no credit.

The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, "Why are you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be covered by the roof? No one will ever see it."
And the workman replied, "Because God sees."

I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place. It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, "I see you, Charlotte. I see the sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become."

At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life. It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride. I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.

The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, "My mom gets up at 4 in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table." That would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his friend, to add, "You're gonna love it there."

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right. And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Live Simply.
Love Generously.
Care Deeply.
Speak Kindly.
Leave the rest to God

Saturday, September 15, 2007

Clean your room!

With that very thought in mind I cleaned my scrapbook room that is :-). It's amazing how messy and cluttered one little space can get. But then again that's what happens when you play with your toys and don't put things away when you've finished playing with them. So everything is pretty neat and tidy, I swept the floor and put things in their proper place. I burnt a candle in there for a while to make everything smell nice and fresh (I just love the scent "Clean Cotton").
I'm getting ready for Stamp Group to meet here on Monday and Scrapbook Group to meet here on Wednesday. I'm not making any snacks or nibbles for either event as I really don't have time for such frivolities this week. Maybe next month will find me not scheduling things back to back like I did this month. One of my biggest regrets is not being firm in saying "no children allowed" for our OSC crop...I will be putting it in the next OSC news letter as it is time away from kids and's just the ladies and that's just how I want to keep it!

Friday, September 14, 2007

Mom- the psychic that can find all things misplaced

You ever think about your life and how much easier it would be if your children actually did what you asked them to do? Like putting things away in their proper places when they are done with them! Which leads to me to... what is it with me being the hub for all things misplaced? It's like some sort of mother vortex psychic thing going on...I can't find the keys to MY car...lets ask Mom she'll know where I put them. Or my husband "honey do you know where my wallet/cell phone/hat or something or other here is?" Some mornings I just hold my breath and wait until they leave for work and school! It's like that all of the time...they misplace something and suddenly they think that I know where they put it? Sheesh! Please tell me that I'm not alone in this issue. I can't call what I do having any kind of psychic ability I like to call it being ORGANIZED and leave it at that, LOL!
Ah Friday, dear sweet Friday is finally here. I've been waiting all week for this day to get here :-)

Lots going on as usual...this morning is a little more special. There's the opening of the Finance Center on base and that's a BIG "to-do". The Secretary of the Air Force Mr. Michael Wynne is out here plus Senator John Thune and Congresswoman Stephanie Herseth-Sandlin. Yup this is going to be something alright! So with that ...I've got to put on something dressy for this fine occasion.

After attending the opening of the Finance center I'll be heading over to the base Thrift Shop to finish what I started yesterday...clearing out old stuff. It's amazing how much stuff can accumulate in that little store. But I've got plans for it to be cleaner/neater/more organized than it ever has been. Bringing in that 1000 count box of plastic bags that I bought at Sam's Club was the first step in getting rid of all of those paper and plastic bags people keep bringing in for us. I'll just be taking it all over to the recycle bin and getting our store cleared out of spiders, their webs and other little icky things that have accumulated over time.

Meanwhile back at the Ranch...I've got to get things put away here at the house. I've concentrated all of my efforts on getting the Thrift Shop organized and cleaned up that my house has suffered a bit this week. I come home and am tired and would just like to rest. Hannah and I watched some Home Improvement shows last night...and one was MORE interesting that the other. Oh my word I loved them all! One of my favorites is "Designed to Sell". Those folks know their business! I love how they improve things and changed things around, help the home owners to get the highlights of their home shown off in such brilliant ways! Most times it's using what the home owners already have and added a touch of color to the walls. Other times it's clearing away massive amounts of kid clutter (a.k.a. toys) changing out some furniture or adding furniture to a room. It's amazing what little things they do add up to such a huge fantastic look change in the room. Now for me to get on the ball and get something done with this house. I've got Andrew's room done, my Scrapbook Nook done and our Master Bedroom for me to finish the rest of the house! I've been dragging my feet on window treatments, I've got my sewing machine out, now to finish up some projects for the windows. I'm going to get the big Sash done this weekend for the main window in my formal dining room. I've got to put the liner in the panels for the family room curtains and get them hung up. Hannah's room- well I need to design something for her room and nothing has popped up in my head other than designing and making applique valances and those will be a lot of work. Lets not even talk about the dining area off of the kitchen...still no clue as to what I will do in there or in the kitchen. I had at one time bought a Roman shade for the kitchen but it was the wrong size and I took it back to the store- never did buy another one.

Well the kids are off and that's my Que to get ready for the day. I've got to pack a bag with a change of clothes as I don't want to work in high-heels all day long.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Thought of the Day

One Person can have a profound effect on another. And two people…well two people can work miracles.  They can change a whole town. They can change the world.

~Diane Frolov and Andrew Schneider's a 4 letter word

that strikes fear into the hearts of men. As Kim and I headed out for the moving out of here closing our doors sale at the scrapbook store I thought about my husband who thinks that sales never save him any money. I went to see what the store owner and manager had out out for this sale...I bought a few pieces of paper for an upcoming altered project, some foam letter stamps and some tools. I adore tools! The rest of the stuff...I let the rest of the crowd oh and aaahhh over it as I knew what it was...OLD merchandise. Actually, I was VERY surprised to see all of that old stuff there. Personally speaking a great deal of that old stuff at the sale was stuff that I had donated to the collection box that they had for Hospice House donations. I'm not staying that the stuff on the shelves was the stuff that I had personally donated, what I am saying that it was the same merchandise- and it was OLD!

There must have been 20 cars in the parking lot and 30 or more of us waiting to get into the store. The average sale was around $50 to $60, Kim and I were right there in that price range too. QuicKutz dies at 60 to 80% off...who could resist? Certainly not us, LOL! We also bought these cool magnetic note boards these will be our projects to make while at the Crop for the Cure next month. Now I did go with intentions of buying items for the crop to give away as door prizes but alas, there was nothing in there that I could have bought to put together as kits- the owner made darn sure that she had paper there but not one single sheet of cardstock was to be had! She had a lot of paper that was getting rid of and it was mainly funky stuff with a few good pieces in between, maybe that's why I only bought a handful (like 8 pieces max).

I spent my time with a wonderful friend today and we had a blast! I took her into my favorite little furniture store in town (the nude furniture store). Kim found the perfect piece of furniture for her craft room- and I want one too! I'll have to take pictures of it the next time I go in and post it here. Basically it's an island that's meant to go in a kitchen, it's got great storage and on the opposite side there's the over hang where bar stools or a drafting chair can go. It's waist high so a great heights for working at while standing.

Now I'm off for a fun day at the Thirft Shop!

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Another Scrapbook Store closing it's doors

It's true, my new favorite local scrapbooking store that has only been in business here in Rapid City 1 year is closing it's doors. The owner decided to move to Mitchell- go figure. I don't think that the store owner gave the business a chance. Maybe if she would have looked for a store front that had a better flow of traffic, the place she was at was well...hard to find. I enjoyed shopping there but did find her prices rather high but I still enjoyed the great selection and enjoyed shopping there. I loved to be able to see first hand the kinds of merchandise that I only saw on line or in the magazines- loved the Fancy Pants stamps that she had. Am I sad that she's decided to abandon us after being here only a year? Yes! Especially since she drove the other 2 local scrapbooking stores out of business. So more than ever I will spend my scrapbooking dollars at my favorite place (no it's not Hobby Lobby) it's with Cindy and her site She has fresh new merchandise, the latest items on the market and the BEST customer service ever!

Where were you on 9-11?

As we look at the date on the calendar we remember what happened on this fateful day in 2001. Where were you when the planes stuck the twin towers? Where were you when the plane crashed in the field in Pennsylvania? Where were you when the plane hit the Pentagon?

I know where I was- I was at home. My husband called me from work and told me to turn on the TV, I did just as the 2nd plane hit the tower. I couldn't believe my eyes. My heart was breaking for all of those families that would never see their loved ones again. Then to find out that there were 2 more planes out there...I was sick with grief. I cried for 4 days straight. I remember being relived that my husband was on base. You see, his office took regular trips to the Pentagon. He and his office were supposed to be at the Pentagon that week. Phone lines were tied up all over the place, I couldn't get word to my parents or to my husbands parents that he was safe. The base was on total lock down- no one in or out.

A girlfriend of mine went to the Pentagon and took pictures of the carnage...she gave me prints to make a layout about it. I've still got those prints tucked away- I've still not been able to do a layout on the subject- it breaks my heart thinking just thinking about it. It's still too raw, too fresh too powerful a subject for me to work with without getting stains from the tears that will stream down my face while working on it.

Monday, September 10, 2007

What a Happy Day!

So I've been checking the blog every day to see when Cindy announces the winner of her contest. Well she announced it today! Here's the link to the blog entry

Oh my gosh I am thrilled beyond words to learn that my layout has been picked as one of 4 that will be used in one of her ads in Simple Scrapbooks Magazine! Please check out the site and give all of the ladies a whole hearted congratulations!

It's almost Monday

It's late Sunday night and uncharacteristically, I find myself up and wide awake at this late hour. Actually I was in bed by 9pm with the lights out and awoke due to needing to chomp on some antacids. I hate it when that happens. Acid reflux is just plain nasty when it happens to you, especially when you're sleeping!

Saturday was a day of leisure, okay for some, others had to work at home getting laundry done amid taking care of a sick child and being sick themselves. I am feeling loads better (head cold wise) but this acid reflux is kicking my butt!

Since it looks as if I'm going to be up for a while I'm going to get some things done on the compile my notes and get this months edition of a home owners association news letter written. Maybe I'll get out that Harry Potter book and start reading it again (I'm only up to page 108 and have been for quite some time).

I just realized that I have myself scheduled for something every single day for the week of the 17th- yikes! I am a busy person aren't I? LOL! Loads of stuff going on each and every day...I even have my first big Bingo debut for OSC...Backyard BBQ Bingo I'm hoping that it goes well).

While at church today I learned that our Priest IS NOT going to be deployed after all. You see, he had an accident in his home where he seriously injured his knee which now requires surgery. I volunteered to head up a committee to bring him meals while he is recovering. We have more then enough able bodied folks that can make and freeze a meal portion for him. We can fill his freezer full of delicious home made meals ready to be heated up at a moments notice. As you can tell, I have a high regard for our Priest- he is a likable gentle soul- who like any of us wants to feel loved and needed. My time is so divided with the things I do for the OSC that any more volunteering that puts me being away from my home and family IS going to interfere with my home life. But making meals and bringing them to a friend who needs some TLC...that just takes me getting up in front of our congregation and appealing to them as a family unit- not a problem! It's all about getting people together to help one who does so much for us and asks so little in return.

In case some of you are wondering...there are 105 days until Christmas...better get on making those Christmas cards now or you'll be like me- full of good intentions of making them then realize that you're out of time and have to buy them from a store.

Friday, September 07, 2007

My Friday...

It's Friday and it's not like I had anything major planned- but I'm here at home with my daughter who has that horrible head cold that seems to be making it's way through the schools right now. My girlfriend down the street has it and I know that she is just miserable right now. My poor child looks so pale, she has bags and dark circles under her eyes, her eyelids are swollen and puffy and she walks around with a tissue box in hand. She has a slight fever and I had her put on some fresh clean jammies after her shower so she can at least feel a little better. Part of me thinks that the shower made her feel worse because she was hacking up a storm once she got out of the bathroom.

The down side to being a parent who is taking care of a sick child at home is this... it's that now I'm starting to feel rather crummy- runny nose, watery eyes and a pounding sinus headache. And to think that I was feeling fine this morning...ah the life of a SAHM will the wonders ever cease? I laugh just thinking about it.

I think that dinner tonight will be... from Pizza Hut. I can tell ya right now, there's not going to be any cooking going on around here today beyond the obligatory "feel good/get well soon brownies".

My Cookbook Nook: Apples

My Cookbook Nook: Apples

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Wow what a day!

I get the biggest kick out of working with my girlfriends at our base thrift shop. Oh my word they are a total hoot to be around! We accomplished so much today in preparation for our open house tonight (which by the way went very well).  The store looks great! Kristi did such a wonderful job of getting the consignment part of the store organized, Heidi and Kim brought the glass counter around to the side so customers can view items in it better and I just rearranged items in the house wares department so customers could view them better. WOW - what a world of difference those subtle changes made in the appearance and over all feel of the store. It’s so much cleaner now, better organized and everything just seems to flow so much better. I am so blessed to be able to call these wonderful ladies that I volunteer with on a weekly basis my friends.




Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Do you like who you are?

I'll be the first to say it...I like being me! Some days I wonder how I would have turned out if I didn't meet the kinds of people I have on my journey through life. But all in all I have to say that I like who I am. I always see those blog questions of the day "if you could change something in your past what would it be?". Oh for crying out loud... are you serious? Now if I really had to answer that question the only thing I would have changed was the crappy cars I bought, LOL!!! I have to think that ones life experiences make up who they are. I know that I am constantly evolving and changing and that's only because of my life experiences. Each day is a new day unto it's self. I wake up and say- Thanks God for another day, I'm going to make the best of it!

I had someone ask me recently "Is there anything that you don't do? My reply...yeah I don't do windows, LOL! I get a really strange look with that answer :-) I love to do things, cooking is a real passion of mine heck, I have my famous Momma Sauce simmering away on the stove right now:-) Cooking, sewing, gardening, needlework- I'll try anything once. If I find that I enjoy it, then I'll become proficient at it.

I can't begin to tell you how many times I've heard people say things like..."Oh I wish that I was as talented as so and so" or "Oh I wish that I could cook like you" or "Oh I wish that I could scrapbook like you and/or so and so". My answer is simple....get out there and try your hand at it! You never will know your full potential until you get out of your chair and give it a try!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Are you Happy today?

I have a question for those that read my blog- When was the last time that you did something that made you feel truly happy? It makes you stop and think doesn't it.

Now to answer my own question I have to say that I try to do something Happy each and every day. Be it test driving a new recipe on my family or friends, making a scrapbook layout or tinkering in my flower garden. One of my latest achievements was to make a scrapbook layout about my Dad having Alzheimer's Disease. It's been one of those hard things for me to create...I've tried a few times before but the words didn't come to me. Then I saw a challenge/contest of of sorts at using the Chalk Garden Products - the winner will be in an ad for the website. These papers were as challenging to me as was addressing my Pop's disease on paper. Then it all clicked at once, I knew what I wanted to say and I knew how I wanted to use the paper! My challenging myself with hard to use (for me) paper and a hard subject was the best thing I could have done. I'll post the layout once I hear who has won the contest. Would it be silly for me to say that I hope that I win? I didn't do the layout because I thought that I could win, I did the layout because I found that I had met 2 challenges head on and gave them both my all. If I do's all because of the love I have for my Pop and how I want to keep my memory alive in his heart.

So am I happy today? You bet I am! I'm going to go outside with my coffee in hand and dead head some roses!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

The History of Labor Day

Labor Day: How it Came About; What it Means

(courtesy of

"Labor Day differs in every essential way from the other holidays of the year in any country," said Samuel Gompers, founder and longtime president of the American Federation of Labor. "All other holidays are in a more or less degree connected with conflicts and battles of man's prowess over man, of strife and discord for greed and power, of glories achieved by one nation over another. Labor devoted to no man, living or dead, to no sect, race, or nation."

Labor Day, the first Monday in September, is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.

Founder of Labor Day

More than 100 years after the first Labor Day observance, there is still some doubt as to who first proposed the holiday for workers.

Some records show that Peter J. McGuire, general secretary of the Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners and a cofounder of the American Federation of Labor, was first in suggesting a day to honor those "who from rude nature have delved and carved all the grandeur we behold."

But Peter McGuire's place in Labor Day history has not gone unchallenged. Many believe that Matthew Maguire, a machinist, not Peter McGuire, founded the holiday. Recent research seems to support the contention that Matthew Maguire, later the secretary of Local 344 of the International Association of Machinists in Paterson, N.J., proposed the holiday in 1882 while serving as secretary of the Central Labor Union in New York. What is clear is that the Central Labor Union adopted a Labor Day proposal and appointed a committee to plan a demonstration and picnic.

The First Labor Day

The first Labor Day holiday was celebrated on Tuesday, September 5, 1882, in New York City, in accordance with the plans of the Central Labor Union. The Central Labor Union held its second Labor Day holiday just a year later, on September 5, 1883.

In 1884 the first Monday in September was selected as the holiday, as originally proposed, and the Central Labor Union urged similar organizations in other cities to follow the example of New York and celebrate a "workingmen's holiday" on that date. The idea spread with the growth of labor organizations, and in 1885 Labor Day was celebrated in many industrial centers of the country.

Labor Day Legislation

Through the years the nation gave increasing emphasis to Labor Day. The first governmental recognition came through municipal ordinances passed during 1885 and 1886. From them developed the movement to secure state legislation. The first state bill was introduced into the New York legislature, but the first to become law was passed by Oregon on February 21, 1887. During the year four more states — Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and New York — created the Labor Day holiday by legislative enactment. By the end of the decade Connecticut, Nebraska, and Pennsylvania had followed suit. By 1894, 23 other states had adopted the holiday in honor of workers, and on June 28 of that year, Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday in the District of Columbia and the territories.

A Nationwide Holiday

The form that the observance and celebration of Labor Day should take were outlined in the first proposal of the holiday — a street parade to exhibit to the public "the strength and esprit de corps of the trade and labor organizations" of the community, followed by a festival for the recreation and amusement of the workers and their families. This became the pattern for the celebrations of Labor Day. Speeches by prominent men and women were introduced later, as more emphasis was placed upon the economic and civic significance of the holiday. Still later, by a resolution of the American Federation of Labor convention of 1909, the Sunday preceding Labor Day was adopted as Labor Sunday and dedicated to the spiritual and educational aspects of the labor movement.

The character of the Labor Day celebration has undergone a change in recent years, especially in large industrial centers where mass displays and huge parades have proved a problem. This change, however, is more a shift in emphasis and medium of expression. Labor Day addresses by leading union officials, industrialists, educators, clerics and government officials are given wide coverage in newspapers, radio, and television.

The vital force of labor added materially to the highest standard of living and the greatest production the world has ever known and has brought us closer to the realization of our traditional ideals of economic and political democracy. It is appropriate, therefore, that the nation pay tribute on Labor Day to the creator of so much of the nation's strength, freedom, and leadership — the American worker.



Alzheimer's, Dad and Me

Here are some pictures from our visit to California to see my parents. Here you see my Dad (I refer to him as Pop). He was diagnosed with advanced Parkinson's and Alzheimer's disease in 2005. While my Mom was in the hospital having hip replacement surgery my Dad had a bad accident at home and was unconscious for several days. Through several phone calls I was able to get one of the neighbors to call 911 and have the police break into the house...and find my Dad on the floor of the bathroom unable to respond. He was near death and the hospital had only given him days to live. I flew out immediately. It was during that time when his Parkinson's disease became known to the rest of us- apparently my Dad had known about it for quite some time but was in total denial about it. We found out a week later that he also has Alzheimer's - a disease that robs you of your memories.

So here we are out for a visit and this is my Dad on what we like to refer to as a good day. We had one day in which he did not know any of us and that was the first time that he did not recognize my mom- she was heart broken. She cried and cried and tried to get him to recognize her, it made me sad but I had to pull her away as she was upsetting him even further. It's very sad to see the ones you love being robbed of not only their mobility but of their precious memories. I do what I can to keep my memory alive in my Dad's heart and in his sending him hand made cards. I make a different one each and every week, I write about what ever it is that I have going on. When Hannah and I came to see him he proudly showed me his growing collection of cards that I have sent to him. He talks so highly of my husband and remembered to put on his B-1 bomber cap so I could take a picture of him wearing it for my husband - and yes Lucien got a kick out of my Dad sporting that hat!
This weekend I am making a layout using the picture of my Pop and Me and I want to write about his having Alzheimer's disease. It's a powerful layout idea for me and I want to make it be something that he would be proud of.


Here's something that I haven't done in a few days. I've got some great paper that I really want to work with. I'm not one to create something with patterned paper then look for a photo to go with the layout that I just made- I could never get behind that concept. But here I am doing just that- weird! I'm still in the rearranging stage and I think that I have the design nailed- for 2 different layouts.

Sign ups for the OSC scrapbooking group went VERY well Thursday night. Besides myself I have 12 people signed- I'm excited! Now we shall see if they all come to each get together, there will be some that want to get together on weekends and I'm fine with that too. I'm going to try hard to get the ladies to get together with the Enlisted Spouses group for their monthly crops (they are a fun group). The ESG meets at the chapel rec room on base at the last Saturday of the month. The place has a vast amount of tables set up with chairs and is a perfect place for a crop.

I've decided that I want to host a "Crop for the Cure". Not at my house but at the Club on base. I would like to have prizes donated from the various places in our community that sell scrapbooking supplies. I could collect the fees and donate them in the name of Ellsworth OSC- I've bounced this idea by our OSC president and the 1st Vice President and a couple of other folks- everything needs to get under way for this to happen. I would invite the ESG spouses to attend and basically anyone who scrapbooks could come to this event. I'd have to get firm Rsvps so the club could make lunch for us all. Ohhhh I just love this idea! I hope that I'm able to pull it off.