Sunday, January 30, 2011

One After

Yesterday I ventured out to find some finds.  I went to Target, Michael's, Ross, Bed-Bath-and Beyond, (City Brew for Lemon Mint Iced Tea) Salvation Army, Sacs, Community Thrift Store, 4-Corners Thrift Store, (stopped for lunch at the Coffee Pot- "Hi, EM!") one antique store, Nu2U and Safeway on the way home for groceries.  In all of my hunting for my Before projects I only found one curtain panel, two baskets, 2 curtain rods, 2 wire racks, one plastic ice box and several other non-Before-related items.  So it wasn't very productive, and I was feeling a little discouraged until I realized I really had a fun day! 

So tonight David risked life and limb to climb up on "the ledge" to help me start the Ledge Redo.  It's just a start, but it makes me smile every time I descend the stairway.


I'm open for ooo's and ah's and ideas!

Saturday, January 29, 2011


Ledge/Window above stairs.

So, it's Saturday morning, and I had NO plans for the day.  
Except the plans I just made which happen to include a trip to Ross, 
and three thrift stores to look for "After" photo details.  
(I really wish it was yard sale season!) 

These photos are of areas in the house that have stayed "Before" for long enough.  So wish me luck, and pipe up with any ideas you may have.

Main Bath
The main bath is shared by Grace and David.  It is sorely lacking in storage. 
Existing are one (1!) small drawer and the area under the sink.
I wonder what I could do with the space behind the door.
Under Main Bath Sink

Could you find a pair of earrings in this box?

Master Bedroom with "original" window treatments.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Taco Salad

Do you know what you get when you don't make your bed in the morning?  You get to make dinner!
So tonight the kids made dinner.
Grace, complete with apron.

Dave chopping veggies.

Consulting the recipe.

Em relaxing and reading the newspaper.

Ready for the onions.

Waiting for dinner.

Dinner time skyline.

Homemade taco bowls.

First one to the table!

Dinner is served.

Taco Salad

Job well done!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Tie wood

Getting up at 5:00am to work out means that I am ready for bed at 6:30pm.  What is wrong with this picture?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner

DK and I have a favorite local talk show that we listen to on the way to school.  The hosts are two guys that excel in trivia and odd news.  Each morning they ask some kind of trivia question that callers try and answer.  For example, yesterdays was "40% of women say they break out in a sweat when they have to do this".  Callers guessed everything from "pushing a shopping cart" to the obvious "working out at the gym".  The correct answer was "40% of women say they break out in a sweat when they have to parallel park".  Trivial.  And odd.

This morning's question was "70% of single men say they lie about how often they do this".  Not sure what possessed me, but I picked up my phone to call in.  I was the first one to call, and my answer was "Do their laundry".  I heard two "Ohhhhh, so close".  One guy said "It has to do with laundry".  I answered "I was going to say 'Wash their sheets'" to which they both cheered.  And mumbled "That's amazing".  Then they asked me how often I washed my sheets and I said every other week.  They told me that most single men admit to washing their sheets every four and a half MONTHS!  To which I replied "Maybe that's why they are still single!"  They got a big kick out of that.

Oh, and there was no prize.  No winner, winner, chicken dinner.  Just the satisfaction of knowing that I am a trivia queen!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Weekend in Helena

We had a great get-away weekend in Helena.  Jim, DK, Grace, Em and I went for DK's basketball tournament.  His eighth grade travel team was coached by yet, another coach.  Seems as if they have been coached by committee thus far, but maybe this one will see us through the end of the season.  Maybe.

Saturday's games were at 1:00 and 5:00.  Not bad.  But our first game today, Sunday, was at 7:00AM!  Seriously.  7:00AM!  They played well, even though they, and most of the crowd, were still half asleep.  David has some sort of contusion on his left leg, maybe from an opponent not quite awake yet.  We finished up the tourney with a 3:00 game.  Won 2, lost 2.  Not bad for having another coach.

Our weekend also included staying at a hotel with dozens of other tournament players, 

sweet new uniforms, 

shopping three stores in thirty minutes looking for a bathing suit for Grace,

visiting a Methodist Church, 

enjoying two naps,

two trips to Starbucks

eating at Taco Treat,

and driving home in weather that included rain, sunshine, snow, and clear skies all within a 70 mile drive.

Tomorrow is Monday.  Here we go again!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Briarwood Terrace

Gotta love Facebook.  This is a photo I found on a friend's fb page of her family.  We were neighbors from 1967-1977 or thereabouts.  The eldest daughter was my age.  I thought her room was so cool because it was plastered with posters of really cute guys, you know, like Bobby Sherman and the Osmonds!  Her brother was my brother's age, and our moms were their cub scout leaders.  The youngest two daughters were born while we lived there.  I'm pretty sure I babysat them occasionally.  Mr. L worked for IBM and drove a Mach-something-awesome-car.  He was so cool!  So I'm posting this photo so my mom and dad can look at it.  They don't have Facebook.  They will love seeing this.  Trust me.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

This is the ring I ordered for myself.  It came in the mail today.  It's a perfect fit! 


My One Little Word for 2011 is "Strength".  In choosing that word for the year, I had every intention of living that word in order to become stronger.  Specifically, physically.  I am weak, tired and find myself always feeling weary.  I want to increase my physical strength.  I want strong arms and shoulders, and my physical therapist says I need to increase the strength in my glutes. 

But I knew it would also be opening the door for other areas of my life to be challenged to be stronger.  So far I've needed to draw on my OLW to:

1.  Deal with a water leak from our construction, including physically moving all furniture out of one bedroom into another, explaining to teenagers how to handle something that you really don't want to deal with, and contacting our builder about my concerns of water damage.  None of those things come naturally to me when I live in my weakness.
2.  Stand strong in knowing that our trip to the Middle East IS the right thing for our family of four, knowing that it WILL change our lives, and that it IS an eternal investment.
3.  Say "no" to Nana when she asked if I could come help her for a week.  I tend to want to help/serve/enable others.  It's probably good for both Nana and I for me to say "no", but it wasn't easy.

This is only January 18th!  Can't wait to see how learning to live in STRENGTH will be played out next.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Tickets Bought

Faith in my life today means buying tickets to Germany and the Middle East for four, without any fund-raising monies collected. 

Faith is also knowing that even if we don't collect the entire $8000 needed for this opportunity, God will use this trip in our lives and the lives of our kids to change us forever.  It is an investment to fulfill a dream we have of exposing our kids to what God is doing in other parts of the world. 

I find strength in living by faith.  

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Furniture Moved

Water leak is dried up.  Furniture is back in place.  All of Grace's things are back in her room.  She is organizing.  We may never see her again.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Middle East Trip

 I wanted to update you on an opportunity.  As most of you know, Jim is serving as the Senior Pastor at the Evangelical Free Church in Bozeman, Montana (   We’ve thoroughly enjoyed the ministry at the church since moving here in July of 2008.  Jim’s also enjoyed being involved with Cru@MSU ( a ministry of Campus Crusade for Christ on the campus of Montana State University.   Every Wednesday night, during the academic year, around 400 students gather at our church building to worship, learn from God’s Word and just spend time together.  It’s a very exciting, high energy environment! 

Here’s the exciting opportunity, during this coming Spring Break, our family has been invited to be part of a team of college students from Cru@MSU that is going to a Muslim country in the Middle East.  We will be meeting with local university students and serving local churches.  There are several reasons we’re looking forward to this ministry. 

1). Great Commission: To be directly involved in the Great Commission of Jesus Christ, which is “to make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:18-20).
2). Cru@MSU:  Serving alongside the staff and students from the Cru@MSU team. Jim and I have always enjoyed campus ministry and this could be an opportunity to serve.
3). Friends: While in the Middle East we’re planning to visit a family, supported by our church, which is ministering there.  We’re also planning to visit a summer exchange student, from the Middle East, who lived with our family over a decade ago.  She is now married and she and her husband have a set of twins. 
4). Family:  If it is financially feasible, we would like to take our two youngest children, Grace and David.  They’ve never experienced an overseas experience.  We would love for them to see God’s big picture for the world and develop a heart for the nations. In addition, on our return trip we would like to take a brief layover to visit our son Andrew.  He is currently working at a resort for U.S. military personnel in Garmisch, Germany.  

Please remember us in your prayers as we prepare for this trip: 
·         1. Grace and David have never experienced a mission trip like this, and it is our prayer that the Lord would use this time to change their lives forever. 
·         2. We are in the process of raising the $8000 that is needed for our whole family to go.  If you would like to bless us in that way, go to , then enter our project number #1993213.  Next click on the "Give a Gift" button. Please click on the "Add Comments for Montana State University, Bozeman Scholarship" link, and enter our names in the comment field.  Or if you prefer, you many send a check made payable to: “Campus Crusade for Christ” and mail it to our home address.
·         3. We want to be an influence not only to the people we will meet in the Middle East, but also to the Cru@MSU team members.  Our hearts still love college students!

Thanks for praying for us,

Monday, January 10, 2011

Dear Andrew....

...Remember that book shelf you left in David's room, loaded with books?  Remember I said it might be better to just store all the books in "the hole"?  Remember that you said the bookshelf was flimsy?
Well, I will be bringing home boxes tonight to unload the bookcase, to move it, because water has leaked in the room where your bookshelf is standing.  It may be ruined.  Hopefully the books are okay.  We will store them in "the hole".

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Skiing With the Big Boys

This is where Jim spent all day Friday.  Moonlight Basin.

This is who he spent the day with.  There were about 15 people from church taking advantage of the $20 lift ticket day.  Jim got some more instruction on skiing and even skied a Blue. 

Addition Update:  They installed most of the windows in the new addition yesterday.  Yay!  Totally unrelated to that is the fact that both G & D's present bedrooms have wet carpets. Boo!   Apparently melting snow leaked in from the roof, that had the eaves cut off to attach the present new walls.  We have a call in to our contractor.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

My Word of the Year

A fellow blogger and friend posted something recently that really got me thinking.  SB referred readers here where I was introduced to the idea of One Little Word.  Basically it was a challenge to chose one word for the year 2011.  Now, I'm not very good at New Year's resolutions, goal planning, or even dreaming, but this One Little Word idea seems simple enough for even me.  And the jewelry photo on the One Little Word post especially caught my eye!  What a great idea, to chose a word to live, a word to meditate on, a word to create with.  One word.  For the whole year.  I even signed up for the One Little Word class, which comes with emails, projects, and other suggested tasks in order to help me live my One Little Word.  Hopefully by the end of 2011 I will have a hard copy journal of my year with my One Little Word.  But more importantly I will be changed because of my living with my One Little Word.

My One Little Word is Strength!  For lots of reasons.  Some of which I am still contemplating.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

New Year's Eve: To Sleep or Not to Sleep

New Year's Eve had us going in a couple of different directions.  G&D went to the above New Year's Eve Party.  It was a little unnerving for them both, because there were several youth groups invited, and that meant that G&D wouldn't know everyone there, and that is unnerving for them.  But I told D there was going to be a three-on-three contest, so he got a couple buddies together, and swept their division.  D had plans to go home with a friend after the party.  G was coming home.  (For future reference.)
 Jim and I took Emily to Rio Sabinas for a memorable NYE dinner. 
1.   We drove in -7 degree weather ALL THE WAY to Belgrade!
2.  We were "hanging" with the popular kids.  We saw several well-known Bozemanites.
3.  We were treated to The Black Flamingos; A cover/swing band.
4.  Good food.  Ribs, fajitas, and steak.
5.  Great dessert.  Chocolate Banana Sopapillas with vanilla ice cream and caramel sauce.

Em's photo!  Not sure why it looks like I have a bowl-cut hair do.  I do not!
So after dinner we drove home, and settled in to ring in the new year in a warm place.  We watched the ball drop, listened to city-wide fireworks, kissed each other, then rolled over and went to sleep.

Only to be awakened at 1:10am.  Grace texted me with two questions:
1. "Can I go to Perkins with the youth group?"
2. "Do you know where Blake is?  We can't find him at the church."
(Blake was one of D's basketball buddies that was supposed to catch a ride home with our youth leader) 
I awoke from my sleepiness and gathered enough wits to text Blake's mom, to see if she knew where he was.  I was pretty sure she would not appreciate a text at 1:15am to ask if she knew where her son was.
She didn't answer.
And then she didn't answer.
So I texted G to see if they had found Blake.  They had not.
And then I sent the text to Blake's mom again.
And then she answered.  Blake had left early, and forgotten to tell David.  Boys!
Back to Grace with a "Blake is home!" text to which she replied "I am coming home, too tired for Perkins".
She arrived promptly at 1:30am, letting herself in, being careful not to disturb Papa and Mama Bear.  But she did disturb Papa Bear, who got up to watch television until he was sleepy again.  So an hour later, back to bed goes Papa Bear and snuggles in soundly with Mama Bear.  Zzzzzzzzz.

Until they were both awakened at 3:42 by doorbells in their dreams.  Both had doorbells in their dreams?  Was that a real doorbell?  Papa got up to check the front of the house for visitors.   No cars in the driveway certainly meant that it must not have been our doorbell.  Until it rang again.  It was our doorbell!  At 3:42am?!

Papa and Mama both went to the front door, opened it, and saw D standing there, in shorts, no coat, in -13 degree weather, with no car in the driveway.  

Mama Bear: "What are you doing here?" (Remember, he was supposed to go home with a friend)
D:  "Well, the plans didn't work out and Chris left without me, so I just came home".
Mama Bear:  "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN!"  (Caps for intensity only, too groggy to speak loudly!)
D:  "I went to Perkin's with the youth group, and got a ride home".
Mama Bear:  "Good night".
D:  "Good night".

Once again Papa and Mama Bear returned to their nice warm bed, wondering who would have left their Baby Bear, in shorts, with no coat, in -13 degree weather, locked-out of the house, all alone in the night.

They didn't wonder very long....Zzzzzzzz.