Friday, September 29, 2006

a pleasant afternoon :)

Yesterday, I spent the afternoon with Oma. We had such a nice time together. By the way, if you still have grandparents to enjoy, I urge you to take advantage of the time you can share together. Grandparents can be such a gift......they have so much love and knowledge to give. I miss all of my grandparents dearly, so I am especially glad that I now have Opa and Oma.

Anyways, usually when I see Oma, lots of people are around. But this time, it was just she and I. We had a nice lunch together, and then looked through my wedding album that I just got a couple of weeks ago. Well, that just made us want to look at more pictures, so we went down to the basement and dug out all kinds of old things. We spent the afternoon drinking tea/coffee and looking at all sorts of pictures, mostly wedding. I saw Opa and Oma's wedding pictures from 1957, which were just beautifully classic. Then I saw all the wedding pictures of Oma's children -- my in-laws (of course), and the rest of the aunts and uncles. We had a good time working our way through the decades and laughing at the clothing and hairstyles that everyone thought were so fashionable! :)

Oma was a nurse, so after that, we spent a good bit of time relating stories and chatting about nursing. Then, as always when I go there, I played the piano for her, and we sang together. There is just something so special about a grandma and the love she shows, even to me, a granddaughter that she just gained last year.

So, if you haven't recently, go spend time with your grandparent(s)! Or if they don't live nearby, call them and tell them you love them. Or write a letter. Your life will be enriched, and your grandparents will be happy. As for me, I can't wait for the next day when I can go back!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

gas prices revisited

Gas prices went down again.

I just thought I'd post that b/c I'm happy about it! Currently, at the station down the street, gas is $0.80 a liter ($3 a gallon). It's so nice to be able to fill up for 20-something dollars instead of 30-something dollars.

My good mood continues....

Rose, Ruby, and Evelyn

This is a blog that I copied over from myspace. I thought some of you might enjoy reading it. To read more about another lady from our nursing home, click here.

For those of you who don't know, Jamie and I spend some Sundays every month volunteering at a nursing home. I also volunteer at a retirement home here in the area during the week on occasion. Which I totally recommend......it is a very rewarding, inspiring, and often humbling experience.

Anyways, on Sundays, we have a sort of church service with them, mostly sing hymns and the like. Many people come to these services, but not many people come to every service. That is, with the exception of Rose and Ruby.

Rose is a great lady with a wonderful smile. I do not think she is as old as some of the others, but because of her total dependence on others to care for her, she lives in this home. Rose faithfully attends every service. But Rose is special in another way -- she cannot talk. The first time we met her, we weren't sure if she actually wanted to come to the services, or if she was just placed there by the nurses to be babysat by us, in a manner of speaking. We soon discovered this was not the case! As we came to get the people from their rooms to come to the service, we would ask Rose if she would like to come. That was when the most beautiful thing would happen.......her face would light up with the brightest and best smile and she would nod her head. During the service, while others were singing joyfully and even loudly, Rose's smile sang for her. I smile just to think about it.

Then there is Ruby. Ruby also comes to every service. Ruby, however, can speak, and usually does a lot of it! In her advanced stages of dementia, she sometimes rambles on and on about things the rest of us cannot see or hear. But what is generally garbled speech becomes quite understandable as Ruby listens to the old hymns we sing. Every time she hears them, without exception, Ruby will stop in the middle of her ramblings, and say, "Oh, that's beautiful, just beautiful" and stop and listen. She makes me smile too.

Evelyn is a lady that lives at the retirement home that I go to during the week. I truly think that I would be hard pressed to find a more gracious woman. She is just lovely and elegant in every sense of the word. She is also very independent, but unfortunately has to depend on others for some things, because she is blind. However, what would be a handicap for most, is more of an asset to Evelyn, or at least that's what she says. As I play the piano for them to sing hymns, I look around at all these people. Evelyn is the one singing all the songs, every line, every word. She told me that because she does not have to worry about reading the words, she can picture the face of God while she sings in praise to Him. How beautiful is that? It inspires me so much every time they sing "Amazing Grace" and I see Evelyn singing, "I was blind, but now I see!" I venture to say she sees more than the rest of us!

I am so blessed to have these people in my life. Every time I volunteer, I am inspired a thousand times over.

Jays game

Anyone who knows me really well knows that I am the New York Yankees' biggest fan. I live and die with the Yankees. I know every guy's number, I know the batting lineup, I know the starting pitchers......and I might even be able to tell you a few stats. :) For those of you who might think I'm a bandwagon jumper, or I just picked them b/c they're good, well, think again. Just ask my mom and she'll tell you that I have liked the Yankees ever since I was a little kid. The reason why? Because my daddy liked them!

That being said, my husband is a major Blue Jays fan. Probably not their biggest fan, but we'll just say he likes them. :) We watch a lot of their games on TV at home, so I know all their players and stuff as well. Well, the Yankees and the Jays are in the same division. Which means they are rivals........which sometimes doesn't bode well in this household.......lol. For our anniversary in July, we went to a Jays/Yankees game. Maybe not the best idea in the world.......we are both majorly competitive, and I think there's maybe a little bit of sore loser in there, too. :) Afterwards, we figured out that even though we both enjoy going to baseball games, it wasn't the most fun in the world to cheer against each other the whole time.

So.........on Saturday, we decided to go to a Jays/Red Sox game. The Boston Red Sox are also in the same division as the Jays and the Yankees, and are an even bigger rival of the Yankees. In essence, that means I don't like either team! The Yankees had already won the division a few days ago, so this game was pretty inconsequential to me. Except for the fact that I HATE the Boston Red Sox!!! Even though I would normally never cheer for the Jays, I did it this time and with great gusto. My husband and I were finally cheering for the same team!

It was such great fun to boo the Red Sox, which we did with great enthusiasm. There was a whole row of Sox fans behind us, and Sox fans in front of us, so we made sure to cheer for the Jays and boo the Red Sox extra loudly. I think by the end of the game, they were very sorry they had traveled all the way to Canada to see their team play. We had two of Jamie's brothers with us, and I think they were a little embarrassed to be seen with us. :) We are going to go to more games next season, so I think we will try to go to ones when they play Boston......we had such a great time! :)

For all you Boston fans out there.....the hunt for October is over. Sorry, boys!

P.S. The Jays won the game 5-3. How very gratifying.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Mabel

Mabel is a tiny lady who has inspired me and changed my life and reinforced my faith, yet I have never met her. And I will never get a chance to meet her in this lifetime, not until Heaven.

For those of you who don't know, Jamie and I started a nursing home ministry in our church, and we visit a local nursing home one to two times a month, holding services and singing and that type of thing. We have been doing this, I guess, 8-9 months now. Volunteering there has opened up a great opportunity for our pastor, whom they asked to be one of their spiritual staff, so to speak.

So, last week, our pastor got a call and they said a lady named Mabel wanted to see a pastor because she was nearing the end. I guess she had cancer and a broken hip, and was just very sick. He went in to talk to her, and come to find out, she was a Catholic and wanted her last rites. Instead of just saying, "well, I don't do that and have a good day" type of thing, he took the opportunity to talk with this lady about the condition of her soul. I don't know everything that happened, but I do know that he asked her, "do you know what the requirement is to get into Heaven?" And then he proceeded to walk her through the simple plan of salvation. When he had finished explaining it, he was about to ask her if she wanted him to pray with her so she could receive Christ as her Saviour. But he didn't even get that chance, b/c as soon as he was done talking, she bowed her head and began praying and asking the Lord into her heart to save her! Needless to say, he was so excited! She continued praying and told the Lord that even though she was going to spend the rest of her life on this bed, that she wanted to give her life to Him.

The next day, Mabel's daughter called our pastor and said, "what have you done to my mother? There is such a change in her!" Apparently, when her daughter had come in to visit, Mabel was all smiles and said to her, "I've received Jesus as my Saviour and you should, too!" Our pastor was so glad, b/c he had been praying for some reassurance that she had really given her life to the Lord, and there it was!

Five days after Mabel got saved, she entered into her eternal rest with her newly found Saviour. In fact, she passed away during the time we were there having a service with the other residents. The next day, Mabel's daughter called up our pastor again and asked him if he would mind speaking at her funeral. Well, the Lord was just working in amazing ways at opening so many doors in this situation. It was the kind of thing that just made you sit back and say, "Wow, God, You are awesome!"

The funeral went well, and our pastor spoke about receiving the Lord Jesus into your heart. Most of the people there were Catholics, and were a little stunned that there wasn't a traditional mass. However, there was one lady in the back, who kept nodding her head in agreement as our pastor was talking. After the service was over, this lady came up to him, and said that she was a born again believer. She had been Mabel's nurse for several years and had often spoken to Mabel about her need of a Saviour. Every time in the past when she had tried to witness to her, Mabel would become angry and tell her to be quiet and that she didn't want to hear it. When she heard that Mabel had passed away, she was reluctant to come to the funeral, but did so anyways, and thereby received one of the biggest blessings of her life.....that lady she had witnessed to for all those years had finally become a Christian!

This whole story encouraged me in so many ways. Our God that we serve is just incredible! It really helped me to know that God can still save elderly people. Sometimes, it can get discouraging going to the nursing home week after week and seeing little outward response. You wonder how much some of them understand, if they understand at all. You wonder what your purpose is there, and what God is doing here. And then you hear one story about one lady trusting Christ as her Saviour, and suddenly everything makes sense. We can't always see everything, we don't know everything that will happen, we certainly can't see the seeds we are planting. Just like that nurse who planted seeds with Mabel for years and finally saw results now.

Some plant, some water, but it is God that giveth the increase. "He must increase, but I must decrease." All glory be to Him for another soul who has safely entered His fold!

Friday, September 22, 2006

cravings.....and I'm not pregnant!

So yesterday, I was feeling terrible pretty much all day for lovely girlie reasons. I wasn't really in pain, just feeling uncomfortable. But anyways, when I get like this, I like to eat (and eat and eat and eat..........and so on!). I'm going to be a bad pregnant lady! (NOTE: This is not an announcement of any kind! I'm just saying if and when the time comes.........lol) After dinner last night, I just kept thinking about food and how good certain things would taste. Just kinda thinking about it, and not saying anything out loud.

It got to the point where thinking about it wasn't enough, so I got my shoes and jacket on to go to Walmart. Which my husband thought was extremely weird, but oh well. :) I decided I wanted Coke and Oatmeal Crisp Maple Nut cereal. Now Oatmeal Crisp is my absolute favorite cereal in all the world, and usually any variety will do, but for some reason, I really wanted the Maple Nut kind. Don't ask me why. I got the Coke at Walmart, and then come to find out that they didn't have my cereal in stock!!! They only had the Vanilla Yogurt kind (how dare they?).

After being frustrated (for like two seconds), I didn't even hesitate. I bought the stuff I had in my hands and then was on to the next store in search of the elusive Maple Nut cereal. I think I found it at the third store, and it cost me a dollar more than it would have at Walmart. But what's a girl to do? I pity my poor husband should I ever become pregnant.........I am liable to send him out at all hours of the night for Slurpees and chocolate and who knows what else? :)

Now everything was was all better. I had my cereal and I could forget about my discomfort. Hopefully next time, I'll crave something that we actually have in the house. But I'm not placing any bets.............

Thursday, September 21, 2006

the little things in life

Someone sent me this as a forward.......I usually delete them immediately, but I liked this one!

A list of natural highs.........things we dismiss as the small stuff......

  1. Falling in love
  2. Laughing so hard your face hurts
  3. A hot shower with someone you love ;)
  4. No lines at the supermarket
  5. A special glance
  6. Getting mail that isn't a bill
  7. Taking a drive on a pretty road
  8. Hearing your favorite song on the radio (this does make me quite happy!)
  9. Lying in bed listening to the rain outside
  10. Hot towels fresh out of the dryer (gotta love it!)
  11. Milkshakes
  12. A bubble bath
  13. Giggling
  14. A good conversation
  15. The beach
  16. Finding a 20-dollar-bill in your coat from last winter (this has happened!)
  17. Laughing at yourself
  18. Looking into someone's eyes and knowing they love you
  19. Midnight phone calls that last for hours (the best)
  20. Running through sprinklers
  21. Laughing for no reason at all
  22. Having someone tell you that you're beautiful
  23. Laughing at an inside joke
  24. Friends
  25. Accidentally overhearing someone say something nice about you
  26. Waking up and realizing you still have a few hours left to sleep
  27. Your first kiss (wow!)
  28. Making new friends or spending time with old ones
  29. Playing with a new puppy or kitten
  30. Having someone play with your hair
  31. Sweet dreams
  32. Hot chocolate (or hot apple cider)
  33. Road trips with friends
  34. Swinging on playground swings (I love to do this!)
  35. Making chocolate chip cookies
  36. Having your friends send you homemade cookies
  37. Holding hands with someone you care about
  38. Running into an old friend and realizing some things (good or bad) never change (true enough)
  39. Watching the expression on someone's face as they open a much-desired present from you
  40. Watching the sunrise or sunset
  41. Getting out of bed every morning and being grateful for another beautiful day
  42. Knowing that someone misses you
  43. Getting a hug from someone you care about deeply
  44. Knowing you've done the right thing, no matter what other people think

I notice that many of these are about laughing! :D In which case, I'm good, cuz I'm always laughing! Which one is your favorite?

random

Well, I have a feeling that this post is going to be about anything and everything, hence the title. :)

First off, I'm a little frustrated b/c I already wrote this post and it somehow got deleted. Well, probably the more accurate description would be to say that I accidentally deleted it, but I was going to try to let my computer take the blame for my error. :) It's so easy to blame things on inanimate objects (or the cat, for that matter!). Let me see if I can remember what I wrote.

My parents came up to visit this past weekend, which was a very nice time for everyone, I think. They came a little earlier than planned, and were able to say an extra day, so needless to say, I was excited about that. My parents are not the kind of people who could ever wear out their welcome, unless they were to stay for months and months and months or something. Even then, I don't know if I would be sick of them, b/c I just happen to have the absolute best parents! Not that I always thought so, but that's another story for another post. We only have a one-bedroom apartment, so we let them stay in our bedroom and we slept on the sofas. (Okay, there's the reason we might not want them to stay too long!) I am very fortunate that my husband has a great relationship with my parents, so he even took the day off on Monday, and we all hung out together and talked and had fun. I cannot emphasize how blessed I am to have the people God placed as my parents, I could never trade them for anyone. My mama looks to be doing quite well, so thank you to all those who have prayed. She is getting the results of some bloodwork next week, so we shall see. Here is a pic of them.


Other news -- I am still in the quest to find employment. I guess jobs are not that easy to come by around here, at least if you want to work somewhere other than a fast food restaurant. I have dropped my resume by a few places, so I am waiting for call backs. What I really need to do is get moving on getting my nursing application together. I have to send separate forms to Canada, Pennsylvania, and the school where I got my degree from (apparently, I should still be IN school, since I am still ending my sentences with prepositions........lol). And there is a fee just for them to ASSESS your application! It is not a huge amount of money, but it is substantial, so it really makes you think and check and recheck and double check all the information you have written down to be sure it is correct. At any time, they may reject your application, and the fee is nonrefundable, so I am being extra careful. Sometime, I think my life is eating, sleeping, filling out paperwork, and making phone calls..........lol. Okay, it's not THAT bad.

Jamie worked all day yesterday, came home for about 20 minutes, and then headed out for the rest of the evening. So poor me, I was alone most all of the day. When Jamie is gone, I almost NEVER feel like cooking, especially just for me, it seems like such a waste. But I figured I'd better eat something. So my dinner menu was......(drum roll please).....tortilla chips with cheesy salsa, a few pieces of fresh pineapple, and a tangerine-flavored Fun Dip! And the Fun Dip was the best part, I'm getting hungry just thinking about it...........lol. Anyways, I'm sure some of you can relate to not wanting to cook for just yourself. There are some days when the first time I eat anything is when Jamie gets home and we have dinner together. Sometimes I think, what did I do before I got married? Then, oh yeah, it comes to me............Mama cooked for me......lol.

Well, I think there is more to be told, but I will save that for another post.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

a different pic of Spencer

Since the other one got deleted for some crazy reason......here is an updated pic of my kitten Spencer. She is getting so big, eh? :)



Friday, September 15, 2006

this weekend

Yay!!! My parents are coming for a visit this weekend. :) It will only be for a couple of days, but I am excited that they are driving all the way up here just to see me! They decided to bring our wedding album instead of sending it, so I get to see THEM, too. Which means I'd better get busy cleaning and cooking and baking and such. They'll be here tomorrow.

To whoever reads this, could you all please pray for my mom? She has been doing really well lately, but we never know when things could get bad again or the cancer might come back or whatever. So please keep my beautiful mom in your prayers. God has been so good.

Tuesday, September 12, 2006

a yummy recipe

Well, ever since I have entered the world of housewifery and such things that go along with it, I have been experimenting with recipes. This is all new to me, b/c I rarely did any cooking or baking before I got married. Now, a year later, I have become much more comfortable. Anyways, that being said, I thought I would share this yummy recipe that I made for dinner tonight -- baked potato soup. :)

Ingredients You Will Need

  • 4 large baking potatoes
  • 2/3 cup butter (do not substitute margarine!)
  • 2/3 cup flour
  • 6 cups milk (can use whole or 2%)
  • 3/4 tsp salt (can omit)
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 12 slices bacon, fried and crumbled (I personally use more bacon than this to try to convince my husband that this is a "meat" dish.......lol)
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese
  • 1 cup (8 oz) sour cream

Directions

  1. Bake the potatoes using the method of your choice (I use the microwave)
  2. Cut the potatoes in half. Scoop out the pulp and put it in a small bowl.
  3. Melt the butter in a large kettle. Gradually add the flour to make a pasty mixture.
  4. Gradually stir in the milk. Continue to stir until smooth, thickened, and bubbly.
  5. Stir in the potato pulp, salt, pepper, bacon, and cheese. Cook until heated. Stir in the sour cream.
  6. You can serve this immediately or transfer it to a slow cooker set on low to keep it warm for as long as you wish.

And that's it! Pretty straight-forward. I made it this afternoon and kept it warm in the slow cooker until dinner time. This works well for us b/c I never know when Jamie will be home from work. And it was particularly good since the weather is showing increasing signs that autumn is near. Enjoy!

Monday, September 11, 2006

don't forget

Today is September 11, 2006. Five years later. It hardly seems like it could have been that long ago. Five years ago, I was 18 and a freshman in college for just a few days when I heard the news. How unreal it seemed. I watched some of the news reports today on the memorial services, and it still seems a little unreal. I wonder how long it will take before all Americans don't even blink an eye come September 11. Eleven years ago, there was a bombing in Oklahoma City, and I don't remember the last time I heard something about that. I hope I will not forget, I pray I will not forget.

Today, I volunteered at the retirement home. It was nice to see the Canadians remembering this day with moments of silence and such. Then, I took a lady from the retirement home to see World Trade Center tonight. It was the second time I have seen the movie, and was just as touching. Still shocking, still unreal, still very very wrong and very very sad.

Don't forget.

Opa and Oma

On Saturday, I got to spend most of the day with Opa and Oma (Jamie's grandparents) and Beth and Cheryl (two of his sisters). I am so blessed to have them and be loved by them, as I no longer have any biological grandparents of my own. And these two are definitely incredible! They are so loving and caring and very interested in what is happening in each of their grandchildren's lives (and they have 19 plus me!). And they will be married for 50 years in August 2007!

♥ OPA ♥

Opa is 76 years old (or young, depending on how you look at it). He is so cute.....right now, Oma has her arm in a cast b/c she broke two of her fingers, and Opa is taking such good care of her by doing all the housework and helping her do everything. Opa used to be a preacher, and is still very faithful in church. He is an amazing artist, and I mean AMAZING! He gave us one of his paintings for our wedding last year, and we have hung it proudly on our living room wall. (I should take a picture for all to see!) Opa and Oma have his paintings hanging all over the walls of their house. He loves to take pictures and work in his garden, which is just beautiful. He is very adept with his computer and loves to e-mail! He loves to have deep conversations! I think he must have been a psychiatrist in a past life, b/c whenever I tell him something, he says, "and how do you feel about that?" LOL! He is so great.


♥ OMA ♥Oma is a bit younger than Opa, she just turned 70. She is such an extraordinary person. I have never seen her angry or upset or say an unkind word to anyone! She is loving and giving and so cheerful. How I pray that I will learn to be as graceful as she is. Oma used to work as a nurse, and still has a part-time job doing home care for another lady. She plays the organ at church, I love to play the piano while she plays the organ. Honestly, I think she has one of the best senses of humor around! She can joke and laugh with the best of us, even with a hint of harmless sarcasm here and there. :) I think one of the most amazing things about her is that she will do anything, and I mean ANYTHING, and never ever complain about it! If I asked her to go shopping, she would do it. If I asked her to wash my dishes, she would. If I asked her to dig a big hole in my backyard, she would do it willingly and with a smile on her face. She plays Barbies with Jamie's younger sisters, and pool with his brothers. I would also do well to develop this attitude. She loves to do puzzles, and play Scrabble. She is just the best!

I'm so glad that I got Opa and Oma as grandparents when I married Jamie. They are wonderful people, and I'm blessed to know them and be loved by them! I love you, Opa and Oma!

Thursday, September 7, 2006

gas prices again....

Since I said I might be complaining about this the next time, I wanted to post this! I am definitely NOT complaining (not yet........)

I filled up with gas this (ugly cold frozen) morning at $0.84 a liter (about $3.17 a gallon). Woohoo!!! Gas prices have continued to go down, so I continue to be excited. Small things make me happy.

Okay, that's it. Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, September 6, 2006

FINALLY!!!!


Well, look at that!!!! Just look! Can anyone guess what that beautiful piece of paper is???? It is my Canadian work permit, just arrived in the mail today! So as you might guess, I'm a little excited!!!! I guess that means tomorrow I will do some job hunting and applying and phone calls and stuff. I think this also means I can finally apply to take my Canadian nursing exam, so that means some studying is in order. I will update more as I learn more.

This whole past year, whenever someone has complained about their job to me, I have replied, "I would LOVE to even have a job!" And now, I can finally enter the job world. And if I know myself, in a few short months, I'll be one of those people complaining about their jobs. :) Well, hopefully not.....

Things finally seem to be moving along. I have also received the last piece of information that I need to send in to become a permanent resident, so I should get that by the end of the year. I am so thankful for everyone who prayed, and so thankful to God for allowing us to get this far. We seriously couldn't be any more blessed!

Tuesday, September 5, 2006

what's going on....

Well, I just thought I would post a little bit about stuff that is going on in our lives lately. God has been so good to us, so I thought I would share.



1) Jamie received a letter last week that he has made it all the way through the application process to become a cadet in the Ontario Provincial Police! Now, he has been put on an eligibility list and could receive an offer of employment at any time. And yes, he is extremely excited! He has wanted this for a long time, and when he gets this position, he will pretty much have a great full-time job for life. It will also mean that he can quit his other job in construction, which is very physically exhausting. Much as we are excited, we are also preparing ourselves for the cut in pay when he takes this job. The end result is good, but the starting salary is a bit less than what he is making now, although see more about that in #2. Here is Jamie in his OPP auxiliary uniform.





2) I should be receiving my work permit in the mail close to any day now! But I don't want to be too excited until it actually arrives, b/c the government is notorious for taking their good old time and holding things back due to inconsequential things. But I think I will really get it, most likely this week. So this will help when we have to take the pay cut at first. I am hoping to get a part-time job just to make some money for my nursing test. And maybe then, hopefully, I will be a nurse by the beginning of 2007. This has been something that I have been waiting for (and not very patiently!) it seems like forever.

3) hmmm, Spencer is Spencer.........tearing up the house and looking cute while doing it. She goes for her second vet visit tomorrow.

4) My mom called the other day, and our wedding album is finally ready! Only over a year later, but hey! I guess it could have been done sooner, but this whole business with living in another country is kind of extenuating circumstances, you might say. Also, the family pictures we had taken in June are done, so we will be getting those as well.

5) I got a new piano keyboard, courtesy of my church. I had this really nice keyboard that I used for a while, but when we moved, for some reason, it would not work properly anymore. So for the time being, I borrowed one to use for practice, but then had to give it back eventually. For a couple months, I didn't have anything at all, and was kind of just winging my way through playing for the services at church. Well, I knew this was not what the Lord wanted, He wanted my best. Our church offered to pay to repair my keyboard, but the store said it would cost $90 just for an estimate! How crazy is that? Our pastor then said to just buy a new keyboard and the church would cover the cost. So now I have a new keyboard and have no excuses for any mistakes on Sunday mornings! :) It is also good, b/c now Jamie and I can practice specials at home again. BONUS -- I wanted to get a stand for it, but they cost about $50 new, so I thought I would look around a bit. I'm glad I did, b/c I found a brand new one on ebay for the low low price of 55 cents!!! We'll see how good it is when it arrives.

6) It was family reunion day on Saturday for James' dad's side of the family. I met tons of new people, b/c most of these people were not able to come to our wedding, since it was in PA. It's crazy marrying into a huge family.......Jamie has like 25 first cousins on his dad's side alone! I think I have seven cousins TOTAL on both sides, so this was a little new for me, but fun!

7) First day of NFL football season is on Thursday! Yes, that is a national holiday in our house. Although I will have to watch the NY Yankees all the way through the playoffs (hopefully)

It seems like there is so much more going on in our lives than this small post. Rest assured, I will think of them and bore you with them later. :) Tonight, Beth is coming over for a girl movie night, so I am making stuffed peppers......yummy PA food!!

Later....

new page

Okay, so I'm not so great with this computer stuff. My blog looks pretty much the same, but it is a new URL and slightly different layout. I had to change it to Beta because I wasn't able to comment on anyone else's blogs and it was driving me nuts. All this to say that my old profile still exists (barely) but without a blog.


But I guess if you're reading this, you found my new blog and all is well. :) Here is me being annoyed with my computer and lack of knowledge.



Monday, September 4, 2006

World Trade Center

Well, the other day was a first for me. It was the first time EVER in my life that I have walked out of a movie theater crying after a movie.

Jamie and I went to see World Trade Center on Friday night. We had been wanting to see it since it came out, but this was the first weekend in a while that we actually were able to spend together and had time to do it. I had heard varying mixed reviews on the movie, some good, some bad. I guess a lot of people think Hollywood is just in it for the money they can make, and I don't know if that's true or not. But I do know that the movie moved me in many ways.

I was not in New York or anywhere close to it on September 11. In fact, I was in Florida at the time. I did not know anyone who was lost or injured in the attacks. I don't have any friends who have family members who were lost. I don't know anyone who worked at the World Trade Center. And yet, a desperate sadness overtook me as I watched the movie. And I know this is because I AM AN AMERICAN, and a proud one at that. Something that big is bound to affect everyone in the country.

But then I got to thinking. If the movie affected me this much, how in the world would I react if I or my family or friends were in some way directly affected by the attacks, i.e. lost or injured? I don't think there is any way that I would have been able to sit through the pain of remembering. Honestly, I sat there and cried and cried as I imagined (or feebly tried to) what it must have been like for those who were there on that day. So, in that respect, I can't get annoyed with all the people who have said it was too soon to make such a film.

Granted, I watched the movie in a Canadian theater with a largely (I'm sure) Canadian audience. And yes, I was highly annoyed with the teenagers sitting near us who were giggling and whispering throughout much of the film. At the end, a number of statistics from 9/11 were displayed on the screen. Just to see the raw numbers made me cry all over again. For example, I had no idea that rescuers were only able to pull 20 people out of the rubble alive. Just twenty. And I guess I really can't expect Canadians to understand or even feel the magnitude of what happened. But I did expect a little respect, and so many people got up and walked out during the credits at the end where they listed all the names of the people who were lost that day.

I guess human nature is what it is. We all need to take the time to feel things a little more deeply. We need to search our souls and weep for all those who were lost, all of them who were lost souls who did not know they were on their way to Heaven. It was a lesson for me -- am I honestly burdened to the point of crying over all the lost souls on their way to hell? And what am I personally doing about it?

If you haven't seen the movie, I highly recommend it. But take a box of tissues.

God bless America.

gas prices

I just thought I would add a quick note here that I am EXCITED about the gas prices as of late! I know you usually hear everyone complaining, but how can I complain? Up here in Canada, we fill up with liters, not gallons, so our prices probably seem way cheap to everyone in the USA.

When I filled up with gas a week and a half ago, it was $1.06 a liter (translate roughly $4 a gallon). Well, prices have continued to drop and drop over the last few days, and this morning, I filled up at only $0.88 a liter (approximately $3.32 a gallon)! I was so happy.....

It's the little things in life. Of course, what I choose not to remember is the fact that when I first moved to Canada last summer, $0.88 was a normal price to be paying for gas ALL THE TIME. But I won't dwell on that. To me, I saved $5.50 off the price of last time's fill-up, and that's good enough for me! Probably next week, I'll post something about outrageous ever-changing gas prices........lol.

But for now, I am happy. :)

401 days later.....

On August 28th, we were married 401 days!! Ha ha, I know that's not a big deal, BUT something happened that marks a milestone, I think. Or else I'm just really reaching for a blog subject...........lol.

Anyways, I was reaching for something on the kitchen window sill on Monday night, and there was a glass on the counter top right underneath me. Well, of course, as I was reaching, my arm just happened to hit the glass, and it just happened to fall on the floor, and it just happened to hit the tile floor instead of the carpet that was right next to it. Yeah, I'm not bitter or anything.

It was sad in a way -- we had six glasses of that size. What do I do now when six people come over? I no longer have a complete set. But then I thought about it -- it took us (me) 401 days to break the first glass! If I only do one a year, then I guess I'm doing all right. Plus, by the time I have kids, they'll probably be breaking them every day.

Story not over. If I had just cleaned it up and been done with it, all would have been well. I could have even forgot about it, maybe. But, a couple of hours later, I was walking through that area, and I guess my cleanup skills aren't top notch or anything, b/c I stepped on a piece of glass and cut the bottom of my foot! I wasn't sure if the piece of glass got imbedded in my foot or not, so baby that I am, I got my husband out of bed to look. Amazingly enough, he was not annoyed. So, anyways, I could have forgotten the whole broken glass thing, but for now, I've got a bandaid on my foot to remind me.

Irony. :)

Spencer

Spencer is my new kitty. She is a girl.

Yes, I know Spencer is a boy name, but she is perfectly okay with that name. It fits her. In fact, I think she will probably be able to grow up without being traumatized.

Spencer weighs 3.1 pounds as of her last vet visit.

She has a scabby mark right in the middle of her nose. She hit it on our bed while trying to jump up there during the night. You might think she would learn, but she still jumps up there every night.

Spencer hates water with a passion.
When she is happy, she can purr loud enough and long enough to supply power to a small city for a while.

She does not really like to be held, but will tolerate it for small amounts of time.

Spencer likes to lie between Jamie and me in bed (think what this is doing to our marriage......lol). But she doesn't understand when just one of us is lying in the bed and will jump all over the person until A) they get up or B) kick her out of the room.

Her favorite place to nap is draped over my laptop keyboard. Second favorite is the back of the sofa.

The other day, I had this cake with chocolate icing. Spencer got curious and plopped herself right on top of it! She was covered with icing. Needless to say, she got her first bath, and I was annoyed b/c I didn't get any cake.

We definitely know Spencer is a girl. She will pull my undies out of the drawer and play with them. I guess James' underwear are boring. :) She will also intently watch me put on makeup.

She likes to wake me up in the morning by licking my nose and patting my face with her paws.

We know Spencer loves us, b/c she used to play with her claws extended, and now she doesn't anymore. No more scratch marks.

Spencer has one little gray and black spot right in the middle of her otherwise all white belly.

She loves feet and shoes.

It is one of her great interests in life to watch me clean out her litter box. She sits right next to me and purrs approvingly. :)

She likes to sit at the computer with me and watch me play Tetris. At first, I didn't really think she was seeing it, but then she began swatting at the pieces as they were falling! She gets annoyed when nothing happens as she hits them. :)

My husband discovered she likes to play peek-a-boo. If you look at her while she is sitting under the table and then move your face away and do it a few times, eventually she will catch on. When you bring your face back, she will start "attacking" you by swatting your face and licking it!

Spencer is a great little kitty. I will add more when she does more cute things.

from yesterday......

I am the pianist at my awesome church. Which is generally a joy, and sometimes a challenge. Yesterday, the songleader announced that people in the congregation could pick favorite hymns out of the book and everyone would sing them together. I always get nervous at times like this, because inevitably, someone will pick a song that either 1) I don't know, or 2) I don't really like to play.

Well, an elderly man raised his hand and picked a number. After everyone had turned to it, there was somewhat of an uncomfortable silence in the building. I looked at John, the songleader, and he seemed a bit embarrassed as he admitted he was not familiar with the song. The pastor (of course) did not know the song, and most everyone else there was looking a bit confused. I, of course, did not know the song either, but I bravely said I could play it. Ha ha, they thought I was awesome, but it was really so easy, in the key of F and in 3/4 timing.

The pastor suggested that the man who had picked it come up to the front and teach it to everyone. He willingly obliged, and we made it through the song, and gracefully, at that! What we discovered, though, was a beautiful old hymn with wonderful words. I think we were all blessed to have had the opportunity to hear it and learn it. Some of the words were very moving, so I decided to post them here.


"Breathe on me, Breath of God,
Till I am wholly Thine,
Till all this earthly part of me
Glows with Thy fire divine.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
So I shall never die,
But live with Thee the perfect life
Of Thine eternity."

The words and the simple melody were very beautiful. I think it just goes to show us that while many modern worship songs are gorgeous and have their place in the service, the old hymns have not lost their power either. I am glad our church sings some of the old hymns. Thanks, Mr. Jerry, for the new/old song!

here's me!

Just starting my blog and seeing how things will go. I used to post entries randomly on MySpace, but I think I will try to be a little more regular on here. But who knows? I have faith in myself!

Just a little about me, I'm sure you can read the about me section for yourself, so I won't go into too much detail. I'm 23, I've been married a little over a year to Jamie, I live in Canada (even though I am American), I am a nurse, I am a mom to my little kitty Spencer.Hmmm, that seems like all the vital statistics. If you want to know more, just ask!

---Melissa