random thoughts

carocollageBefore I begin rambling, let me just say that 21 years ago today, I welcomed sweet baby Caroline into the world. And just last night, she got engaged!! I’m so happy and excited for her. 

And now, until I get more details on the upcoming nuptials, let the randomness begin:

~ I can’t get enough fresh peaches. Or okra. Not together, of course.

~ Now that I spend more time on the road, I’m even more annoyed with slow drivers in the left lane. Seriously, if everyone is passing you on the right, you’re doing it wrong! A couple of days ago I got boxed in by a slow car in front of me and one that insisted on driving along beside me for miles. My guess is that at least one of the drivers was on the phone.

~ Waiters who don’t write down our order don’t impress me. A correct order does.

~ Surely I’m not the only one tired of the “I’m offended” culture so prevalent today — especially on the internet. Just this week I saw it on an instagram pic put up by someone who is rather famous in some circles. It was a funny — darkly so — meme that I chuckled at and kept scrolling. Lots of folks left comments about how offended they were and that they were now unfollowing (that’s a modern word, isn’t it?) her account. I guess they’ve never heard the phrase “don’t take offense where none is intended.” And I guess they live super-insulated, cushy lives where they’re never confronted or challenged in their thinking. In my experience, life is jam-packed with unpleasantness, unfairness, and just plain old garden variety yuck. If you can’t just let at least some of it go or even laugh at it, you’re in for some misery — and probably not too much fun to be around.

~ It sure is nice being married to an IT guy. The wifi on my laptop has been dropping out every few minutes for days. I finally had Paul take a look and he fixed it right up — something about a duplicate IP address. Given his distaste for Apple products, it was an especially loving act.

~ Random thoughts, random photos:




~ I’ve got a whole day (Lord willing!) stretching out ahead of me, with nothing scheduled. I need to do some regular chores around the house — with the music cranked up, but I also plan to get some stuff listed on eBay. I’m in a purging mood.

~ True confession: I finally saw Shrek for the first time last night. Yeah, I lost a bet, so now I have to watch 5 movies of Paul’s choice. 1 down, 4 to go.

~ And the word of the day is:

Screen Shot 2015-07-11 at 8.25.33 AM

…and that probably sums up this post. 😉

Happy Saturday!


My Saturday was a girls’ day. My sister, niece, and I went shopping, and I began the search for a dress for my son’s upcoming wedding. We headed over to Valdosta, where we didn’t have much success, and then we continued over to a bridal shop in the metropolis of Adel. It was a beautiful day for driving through the south Georgia countryside.


I may have found a dress there, but they will call me back on Monday with more information from the company.

We drove back to Thomasville where we shopped a bit and then decided to treat ourselves to dinner at Jonah’s. They have the best Greek salad in town, and I added Cyclone shrimp to mine. I’m still thinking about how delicious every morsel was.

While we waited to be seated, I snapped some photos of the many faces of my energetic niece:








She most certainly doesn’t get her love of posing for the camera from her mom or from me. Must be from her dad’s side. 😉

Glad to live where I do,


random thoughts

~ If I happen upon a Rocky movie on tv, I have to watch it.

~ I think I’ve eaten my weight in chocolate this holiday season. And amazingly, I still have plenty left here in the house. I’d better get busy if I want to get rid of it all before the first of the year.

~ I’m not really into New Year’s resolutions, but I do have some goals for 2014. One of them is to read the books I already own before buying more. That’s one goal I’ve never attained despite trying many times.

~ Do you make New Year’s resolutions? Want to share?

~ I can’t wait to see Lone Survivor. I read the book and hope the movie does the real story justice.

~ The end of incandescent light bulbs draws near. I just ordered a bunch of them from Amazon because I hate the new bulbs. If you want to stock up, use this link and Amazon will throw a few pennies my way. That way I can justify book purchases despite what I wrote above. 🙂

~ I’m reading Khaled Hosseini’s latest novel, and I don’t want to put it down! At the same time, I dread finishing it because I want to spend more time with the characters. At least I have plenty more good reading lined up for 2014.

~ I get to see one of my very favorite people in the world in a couple of weeks. I can’t wait!

~ That favorite person sent me the link to Dave Barry’s Review of 2013. Unlike Dave, I do not miss 2012.

~ Seriously? “I always say to myself, ‘What would Saban do?'”

Happy New Year, y’all! And War Eagle! 🙂


random thoughts & miscellany

~ I’m not a fan of tattoos, but I understand that some people find them meaningful. It puzzles me, though, why people post pictures of theirs on pinterest when their skin is inflamed all around the new tattoo. That’s gross.

~ A is my favorite letter. I like the way it looks.

~ If I have chips in my house, I will eat them.

~ Pajama Boy has to be one of the worst marketing ideas ever. And, honestly, I’m just sick of the government trying to sell us on Obamacare. It’s backwards. They’re supposed to work for us and represent us. Instead, they’re trying to convince us that it’s good for us.

~ I have thoroughly enjoyed this Christmas season. There are several reasons for this, I think. The main one is that God has been exceedingly good to work contentment into my heart. I’m truly happy, deep, deep down in my bones, more so than I’ve been in years. I’m also grateful for and have been trying to follow advice like this. I’m finding that having no expectations of others is really freeing. #thingsiwishidlearnedearlier

~ Some wisdom from Proverbs and delusions of diligence:

The difference between the lazy man and the diligent is not whether or not they can work. It’s whether or not they can work without a boss pushing them.

~ When laughter is an act of defiance.

~ What must you leave behind?

~ on photography and remembering – I’ve never understood why someone (and I’ve seen plenty of people doing it) would take photos of every work of art in a museum or even videotape the entire trip to Disney World. But the premise of this article is a little weird to me. I don’t really take photographs so that I will remember every detail. Just yesterday I was looking through several years of photos on my laptop and kept coming across things I’d forgotten about. The photographs reminded me. And as I looked at some of them, I could remember all kinds of things surrounding the subject matter and when/where it was taken. Isn’t that the point of most photographs?

~ How not to repent

~ Caroline tweeted one of our recent conversations:


~ I recently tried out a recipe for pesto cheese bread that I found on pinterest. I can recommend it!

~ I took a dialect quiz, and I’m not at all surprised by the results:


Happy Christmas week, y’all!

random thoughts

~ The other night on the way home from Target, a very hungry Ms. Claus got into the stocking candy she’d just bought for the kids. Now Ms. Claus has to replace it. It’s a low point for Ms. Claus. UPDATE: The candy has been replaced, and Ms. Claus wised up and bought herself some this time. 🙂  For the children’s sake, of course.

~ I recently participated in a political survey. Here’s one of the questions and my response:


Don’t you wonder about the folks who would answer “Don’t know/No opinion”?

~ Speaking of surveys, I’ve noticed a trend in questions about race/ethnicity. It’s “what do you consider yourself to be?” That’s what it’s come to — what race I consider myself to be? Well, my skin color is pretty much as white as you can get, but I consider myself to be a wise Latina. So there!

~ Because I’ve purchased some Auburn items from Amazon, they’ve suggested that I might also like several University of Alabama items. Um, I don’t think so. They need to straighten that mess out before they start working on the drone delivery.

~ On Saturday, I enjoyed a day at home. It was a rainy day, perfect for Christmas lights, wrapping presents, drinking coffee, and watching movies. All that was missing was Auburn football. I can’t wait until January 6th!

~ Right now my favorite combination of flavors is caramel, dark chocolate, and sea salt.  THIS!

~ My peeps are coming home for Christmas break in two more sleeps!

~ I love my little town. The downtown is so cute with its unique shops and restaurants, bricks streets, and classy Christmas decorations. When I walk out of my office at lunch time and hear church bells pealing, I feel like I’m in Europe — with the benefit of English.


~ Speaking of Europe, my time there has made me ever so grateful for the conveniences of the U.S. that I once took for granted. Grocery shopping, parking, laundry, driving — all of these are sooooo much easier here than there. Plus, we have drive-thrus!

~ My hair stylist (who is AWESOME!) stays booked up well in advance, so I’ve already made all of my appointments with her for 2014. As she was calling out the dates and times to me recently so that I could get them on my calendar, I began to wonder just what in the world would be going on in my life in, say, August. The past couple of years have been filled with surprises — some devastating and some wonderful — and I don’t expect that to change. Still, when I wrote down the August appointment, a flicker of hope and excitement lit up my heart. That was a gift from God.

~ I really want to get back to my photography hobby. I’ve decided to tackle another 365 project, beginning on January 1st. Last time I posted my photos to Facebook, but this time I think I’ll do it over here.

Well, I think that’s quite enough for now.

Merry Christmas, y’all!


random thoughts

~ I was off work but still in town last month on a weekday — a rare event!– and I caught myself thinking that I could really get used to running errands during working hours. And then I realized that I can get used to pretty much anything. I’ve learned over this past year that I’m flexible.

~ I was flipping through stations in my car the other day and caught the end of a song, “I’d like to check you for ticks.”  Seriously.

~ Not sure how I ended up busier than ever in this particular season of life, but I’m very much looking forward to a break at the end of August. I can’t keep this pace up.

~ I wish I could figure out what about my posture causes one of my shoulders to ache.

~ Being in Idaho was like having a little preview of fall weather. Makes me want some Auburn football.

~ I haven’t had a soft drink since June 3rd. Maybe that’s why sales are down.

~ Soon and very soon, I’ll be able to read for fun. And it’s going to have to be books I already own because I need to take it easy on acquiring new ones.

~ I still love Friday Night Lights. A couple of times lately I’ve happened up on it while channel-surfing, and it’s just what I feel like watching these days.

~ In Idaho I saw a young woman with a Mason jar tattooed on her leg:


C’est la vie.


a hipster?!

So… last week, I posted this picture on Instagram:


And shortly thereafter, these comments appeared:


I’m not sure how a 45-year-old woman can be a hipster. I wear reading glasses because my vision is failing me, my car isn’t particularly eco-friendly (and that wasn’t my primary concern when buying it), and I study at a coffee shop because too many things at home distract me and sometimes I need a change of scenery. Could I really be a hipster? Or are my kids just messing with me? What do you think?


Random links & thoughts:

~ A living room made entirely of Belgian chocolate.

~ I was bummed to find out that Google Reader is going away this summer. I’ve used it for years to read my favorite blogs. I’m giving feedly a try.

~ The Holocaust was worse than we thought.

~ Here’s a peek at Trevin Wax on What We Talk About When We Talk About Rob Bell:

…Bell eliminates more paradoxes than traditional Christian teaching does.

It’s traditional Christianity that portrays God as holy and wrathful against sin while being gracious and loving towards the sinner. For all Bell’s talk about embracing “both/and,” it’shis vision of Christianity that emphasizes God being for us, to the exclusion of any idea that God would stand over us in judgment.

Traditional Christianity doesn’t just include “both” but “triple” truths – God against us in our sin, God instead of us as sinners, and God for us as the Justifier. Far from diluting the beauty of God in His transcendence, traditional Christian dogma leaves us with unresolvable tensions and paradoxes galore: free will and sovereignty, God in us and yet distinct from us, the Trinity, the inclusive call to salvation from an exclusive Savior. The list goes on.

The paradoxes of traditional Christianity multiply in ways that stimulate the imagination. Bell’s teaching lacks that kind of substance.

Bell’s book goes down easy, kind of like whipped cream without the cake. God is ahead of us, beckoning society forward, and (how convenient!) it just so happens to be in the direction that society is already headed. Who would have thought?

~ Nancy Wilson on Contentment

~ American girls charted by the Beach Boys

~ Janie has me itching to read Frank Delaney’s Ireland. When this semester is over…

~ You stand a VERY good chance at this point of winning my latest book giveaway.  Pop on over and check it out.

~ Speaking of books, this new series by Leland Ryken looks excellent.

~ I’ve been looking through some old pictures lately. Here are some of my babies and me:


~ It’s a busy week of the usual with the added yuck of taxes. Blech.

I’m off to work to earn some money so I can send more to D.C. (Just as I finished typing that sentence, Loverboy’s Working for the Weekend came on my iPod. Coincidence? I think not.)
Have a good Wednesday,

beware the…

Years ago (it seems like a lifetime ago!) I awoke on a March 15, and when I checked my email I found this message from my son:

Beware the……..













eyes of March!


What can I say? We’re a nerdy classical homeschooling family, and we can find humor in odd places.

It never fails to crack me up. Thanks, Will!

Happy Friday!



A collection of random links & thoughts on this Monday morning:

~ The always excellent Thomas Sowell on Shepherds and Sheep:

Implicit in the wide range of efforts on the left to get government to take over more of our decisions for us is the assumption that there is some superior class of people who are either wiser or nobler than the rest of us.

Yes, we all make mistakes. But do governments not make bigger and more catastrophic mistakes?

Think about the First World War, from which nations on both sides ended up worse off than before, after an unprecedented carnage that killed substantial fractions of whole younger generations and left millions starving amid the rubble of war.

Think about the Holocaust, and about other government slaughters of even more millions of innocent men, women and children under Communist governments in the Soviet Union and China.

Even in the United States, government policies in the 1930s led to crops being plowed under, thousands of little pigs being slaughtered and buried, and milk being poured down sewers, at a time when many Americans were suffering from hunger and diseases caused by malnutrition.

The Great Depression of the 1930s, in which millions of people were plunged into poverty in even the most prosperous nations, was needlessly prolonged by government policies now recognized in retrospect as foolish and irresponsible.

One of the key differences between mistakes that we make in our own lives and mistakes made by governments is that bad consequences force us to correct our own mistakes. But government officials cannot admit to making a mistake without jeopardizing their whole careers.

~ Cutest purses and Kindle covers ever! And I’d really love to have one of these iPhone charging stations.

~ A contrast in poems, in worldviews.

~ How Christians prepare for suffering — a peek: (Read the whole thing!)

In the 1992 sermon “Called to Suffer and Rejoice: That We Might Gain Christ,” John Piper unfolds the significance of Paul counting his gain as loss. Basically, the apostle took a long look at his life apart from Christ. All the things that he valued — his Jewish pedigree, his place in the upper echelon of religious society, his law-keeping — he took a long look at this list and wrote “LOSS” over it with a giant Sharpie.

And then he went a step further.

It wasn’t just the past values of his personal life. It wasn’t just “whatever gain he had.” Paul looks out into the future and declares everything as loss. Everything out there that could pass as positive. Everything good that he has yet to experience and everything which he will never experience. Compared to Jesus, everything is loss.

And lest we think this puts Paul on a pious pedestal, that he is at a spiritual level we’d never reach, Piper reminds us that this sort of reckoning is normal Christianity (Matthew 13:44; Luke 14:33). To consider Jesus better than everything else in the world is at the heart of what it means to be a Christian.

~ My photographer son recommends 500px instead of flickr, but I don’t know if I can muster up the energy to figure it all out. I’ve lost interest in flickr and haven’t posted there in ages. You can check out Will’s photos here.

~ ‘Tis the season to post this photo that never fails to crack me up:


~ An excellent article on “culture creep”. Words matter.

~ Failure doesn’t have to be the last word.

~ I’m itching to do some spring cleaning, but now with a full time job and my master’s class, it’s going to look quite different than it usually does for me. I think I’m going to aim for do-able: one drawer or small area every day. That may well take me into summer before I’m finished, but that’s okay.

~ I love this quote Ali shared.

~ Lars Walker on diversity is worth a read. Here’s a bit:

If there’s any word that’s been abused in our time (and there are plenty) it’s “diversity.” Whenever a contemporary American hears the word diversity, he tenses up, figuring some bureaucrat is about to impose another form of uniformity on him. We’ve made diversity about race, and that’s just stupid.

Snatch up a dozen people from random spots around the world, and set them down together in a room. It’s my certain conviction that the least important thing about any person in that group will be his or her race (their views on race may have significance, though). Gender will matter. Politics and religion will matter, as will cultural tradition. I don’t know for a fact whether general racial traits actually exist in people (apart from physical appearance), but if there are such traits they will have little or no significance, except in terms of how people respond to them.

And yet we talk as if diversity were just about race. A university proudly points to its multi-racial faculty, calling it diverse, even though every single member of that faculty holds ideas and beliefs almost indistinguishable from any of the others.

~ I’ve told y’all how I’m drawn to old, weathered objects, so I really love these photos of verdigris.

~ Molly recently shared a great quote on teachability.

~ Kim writes on lessons from the dining room table.

May your week start — and finish — well!