Saturday, April 30, 2005

Not much happening these past few days. Andy was up most of the night Wednesday with pollen-related general yuckiness. I wish he had told me he wasn't feeling well. Instead, he got up and got himself some water, turned on his light and sat up reading most of the night. If he had awakened me I could have given him Benadryl to help him sleep, but he said he didn't want to bother me. So, at 4:30 when I got up and saw him still awake, I gave him Benadryl then, knowing full well that he'd be too unconscious to get up for school at 7:00! I just let him sleep and he slept until 9:30. I'm a stickler for not giving medicine for every little thing. I honestly believe it keeps everyone healthier to let your body do the fighting, if it can. Too many people take medicine for every little ache and pain, and your body doesn't even have a chance to try to defend itself, and so no antibodies to anything get built up. I feel the same way about seasonal allergies. I know people suffer with them, but pollen has been around longer than people have! I'm quite sure the first settlers didn't go running to Ye Olde General Store for Claritin. I just think that we are in too much of a hurry to "get on with our day", and will take something to feel better so we can do that, instead of just taking it easy a day or two while your body builds up defenses. I guess I'm doing something right - Andy hasn't been to the doctor's for two years and that was when he caught scarlet fever when it was going around school. When his temperature went from 99 to 103 in the space of an hour and he became too drowsy to talk to us I knew this was not the time to let his body fight by itself. Tom hasn't been to the doctor's for three years, and that was when he developed a fluid sac around the screws in the top of his leg and it was too painful for him to even walk. We are blessed with good health and a family lineage that is the same.

Andy has a track meet on Tuesday that sounds like a lot of fun. Five elementary schools from this area get together at the local high school and spend the day running races and doing different sporting events. Each school competes against the others. It is only for the fifth graders of each school. They will be doing that until 1:00, then they return to school for a lunch catered by Chick-Fil-A. Sounds like a great day! All of the fifth graders from Andy's school were given a T-shirt that the school had made up with all the fifth graders' signatures on it and that has their school name on the front. The fifth grade teachers got together and gave me one too! I will proudly wear it on Tuesday as I cheer my son on! He has signed up for a few of the races. They had to sign up in advance for what events they wanted to participate in so there wouldn't be complete chaos on Tuesday.

We went to Jerry's mom's house on Thursday night for his birthday dinner. Unlike my birthday dinner (steak and macaroni and cheese - which, I might add I haven't had since I was a kid - and miss very much), we had roast beef and lots of other good stuff. Of course there was cake and ice cream, too. Tom wasn't able to make it because he had lessons Thursday night. He is doing very well at work. All of his lesson slots are filled because so many people have requested him for their teacher, and now he has been put in charge of instrument repairs at their repair shop, too. He has gotten raises commensurate with all of this too and is doing very well financially. He seems to have a real talent for all things musical, from playing music to building or repairing instruments. He is self-taught in all of this too which is very remarkable, I think. But then again, I am his mother and could be just a tad biased!

Today is a rainy day and so I think I will finish my work, try to do some decluttering and sorting, and maybe work on the blanket that I'm crocheting. Needless to say, we decided not to go to West Virginia this weekend. We thought that it wouldn't be much fun traipsing around in the rain for two out of three days looking at land. We are getting things lined up around here though in order to sell the house. The electrician came by last week and is going to be finishing the electric in the garage sometime soon. The plumber came by yesterday and told Jerry what he needed to get in order for him to put a shower in the downstairs bathroom. This also involves moving a wall in the adjoining laundry room and moving the water heater, washer, dryer, and refrigerator that are in there. Tom said that we're going to fix this place up so that we won't want to move! Nah... THAT will never happen.

Thursday, April 28, 2005

Not a great picture, but this azalea has grown to be HUGE! Must be the coffee grinds I feed it!

Another azalea - complete with bee!

The sun shining through the plum tree branches. If you look closely you can see teeny, tiny plum buds!

One of the azaleas - minus bees for the moment!

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

Time Is Flying!

Where is the time going? And why does it seem that the older I get, the faster time goes by? I don't like it - no, sir - I don't like it one bit! The phone rang yesterday morning and the caller ID screen read "United States Government". Hmm...maybe I should answer this, I thought. Turns out it was a Sgt. Kinney from the U.S. Marines who wanted to know what my soon-to-be-19-year-old son planned to do with his future. I guess Marines don't have a sense of humor - or at least this Marine didn't. When he asked me if my son had considered a career in the Marines, jokingly I gasped and said "You want to take MY BOY!!!!". After a moment, Sgt. Kinney said, "No, ma'am. I assure you I do not want to take your boy." Then I laughed and said, "It's okay. Actually there are times when I'd like to bring him to you!". Again, a silence for a moment, then a serious "Yes, ma'am". Hoo, boy. Tough crowd! Oh, well. I guess a Marine with a sense of humor is an oxymoron. Like civil war.

If it wasn't upsetting enough to be reminded that MY BOY is going to be 19 soon, yesterday at school the teachers asked me to sort the Family Life books that they will be using to teach in the next few weeks. I took a look through one of the books - and had to stifle a shriek of terror. It's the birds and the bees! OH NO!!!!! Not my OTHER BOY! He's not ready for this. I'M not ready for this.

Now, we are trying to decide what to do for Jerry's birthday tomorrow. School is closed on Friday and we had originally talked about going to West Virginia to look for property, but we're not sure what we're going to do just yet. In any case, Jerry's mother said she wanted to at least go to dinner or something tomorrow night if we don't go to the mountains. Another year older for him. Actually, I don't mind his birthdays. Since he is six months older than I am, I have six whole months to tease him about being old! For some reason my mother used to always confuse Jerry's birthday with the birthday of Porky, a dog we had when I was growing up. I wonder if there's something subconscious going on there about what she really thinks of him?!

Well, Andy will be finishing elementary school in about six weeks, Tom will be turning 19 in a while, Jerry turns another year old tomorrow, and I'm getting more gray by the day (larger, too!). Time really does fly, doesn't it? I can remember being 12 and wanting to be 13 so I could wear mascara, and mom saying "Don't wish your life away". I remember being 15 and wanting to be 16 so I could drive, and mom saying "Don't wish your life away". I remember being 17 and wishing I was 18 so I could get married, and mom saying "Don't wish your life away". Now I'm really understanding the wisdom of those words, and telling my boys the very same thing.

Monday, April 25, 2005

Not a lot has been happening, and not a lot of thoughts rolling around in my head lately, either! Sometimes something will happen, or I'll see something and think "BLOG!", but nothing blogworthy has happened recently. Well, except for what we like to call the "meringue pie incident". Luckily, I was the first one to taste it, and quickly quarantined the pie before it did any further damage.

The volunteer lunch at school was very nice. There was a lot of food! There were platters of meats and cheeses, every kind of salad you could think of, including garden salad, pasta salad, tuna salad, broccoli salad, macaroni salad, potato salad, and probably some others that I'm forgetting. They had a place called Mom's in the Kitchen cater it. I didn't even know this place existed - now if only they had delivery service......!

The knitting is going okay. I'm still practicing that, but I got itchy to create something, so I fell back on the old crochet standby. Yarn has certainly changed from back in the day! I found a wonderfully nubbly, thick and soft yarn that I am crocheting a blanket with. I also bought some yarn that isn't actually yarn at all - it's more like feathers on a string. I have ordered some chenille yarn and I can't wait to make something out of that! I ordered from Knitting Warehouse. I have never ordered anything from there before, but their prices were even better than Wal-Mart, and they seemed to have good reviews. We'll see when the goods arrive!

Andy graduated from D.A.R.E. on Friday. He proudly wore his T-shirt home. DARE stands for Drug Abuse Resistance Education. A police officer has been teaching the fifth graders for the last month or so. Andy has really learned a lot. He would come home every evening and tell us facts and statistics, and why Jerry really needs to quit smoking! I was touched by the essay he chose to write. At the end of the DARE course in addition to taking a written test, you had to write an essay about anything you wanted to, but in some way it had to incorporate what you learned. Andy chose to write a letter to Jerry asking him to quit smoking, and giving him what I thought were darn good reasons to! It was a very well-written essay.

Jerry is back on the eastern shore today. Yes, again. The latest on the trailer saga goes like this: Jerry took the trailer to another trailer manufacturer to get their opinion. The man there told Jerry he couldn't and wouldn't fix it, because to begin with the trailer was over-wide, which accounts for the no clearance problem with the wheels, and why they are rubbing the box of the trailer and tearing up the tires. This man told Jerry that there are legal specifications and measurements that trailers need to be, and that this one was over-wide and, therefore, illegal. He suggested the name of an attorney who is very knowledgeable about trailer stuff for Jerry to talk to. Well, this attorney confirmed that indeed Jerry's trailer was oversized and therefore illegal to have on the road, but that he couldn't help because it would be a conflict of interest for him as he represented the National Association of Trailer Manufacturers on a case before, and the company who made Jerry's trailer is a member of this. Have I lost you yet?! This attorney suggested we contact our own attorney and see what could be done. Before doing that, though, Jerry took his trailer to the Department of transportation police and asked them to inspect his trailer. We were really hoping that he wasn't going to leave there was a pile of citations! They were very nice and helpful, but they did inform Jerry that the trailer was illegal, and that he could very well be stopped and either ticketed, or the trailer would have to be parked until Jerry proved that he fixed it to within size specifications. And no, they didn't give him any tickets! When he got home from there, Jerry called our attorney here and explained the situation. The attorney asked Jerry to write a letter outlining everything, and bring it to him where he would refine it and send it to everyone involved and try to get something done without having to take it to court. Jerry, being the nice guy that he is, and not being the litigious type, decided to give the trailer people one more chance. When he called them and told that what he had found out between all of the people I mentioned above, they were suddenly willing to talk with him. Well, that proved to be useless. He went all the way over there this morning and the guy representing the company just kept saying that he sees oversized trailers all over the place, and didn't see what the big deal was. The big deal is that this trailer is unusable to Jerry as it is, because it can't hold any weight without rubbing the tires and burning off the backs of them because the thing is just too wide! The trailer company representative is either very stupid or is just playing the part, but in any case he just could not get it that something needed to be done, and that it was not our fault that we bought a trailer that turned out to be useless because it was built wrong. Jerry already started the letter that goes to the attorney for fine-tuning, and will be dropping that off tomorrow, I imagine. It is amazing to me how no one is willing to take responsibility for anything anymore. Everyone just pushes the blame off on someone or something else, instead of having some character and integrity. Those are hard traits to find in people these days. Well, I could go on and on about stupid people, but I think I've written enough for one afternoon!

Friday, April 22, 2005

Karen's Household Hint #2

Always check the expiration date on your lemon juice before making a lemon meringue pie. Unless, of course, citrus laxative was your intent in the first place.

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

How Politically Correct Can We Get?!

Who thinks up these things? Is there someone who sits in an office thinking of ways to change current terms into "politically correct" ones? It is truly getting ridiculous now. Today I saw a florist's ad reminding everyone to "Remember Administrative Professional's Day!" Excuse me? What, exactly, might that be, I wondered. After a short search I discovered that Administrative Professional's Day is what used to be called Secretary's Day. It seems to me that if everyone was as worried about doing their actual job and doing it correctly, then they would be less worried about the title of said job. Did you know that I'm now a Medical Language Specialist? Yes, the powers that be in the medical field decided that Medical Transcriptionist no longer accurately described the depth of knowledge needed to do that job, and that Medical Language Specialist was to be the new title. I'm glad I wasn't looking for a job recently. I saw an ad for "MLS with extensive ESL". I couldn't figure out what it was. Last I heard, MLS stood for Multiple Listing Service and had to do with the real estate field. By this time I was wondering why this ad was listed in the Healthcare section of the classifieds, and wondering what an ESL was, and why the Multiple Listing Service needed it. I finally figured out what it meant. I'm almost afraid to find out what will be changed next.

This may not be politically correct at all, but I am convinced that we are a society of squirrels. This is what I read in Andy's book about squirrels:

"Usually the male leaves after mating, but sometimes the pair will stay together for a while and even build a nest together. But the male is always gone by the time the babies arrive."

I wonder how many fathers claim temporary squirrelity during their child support trial?!

Monday, April 18, 2005

Karen's Household Hint #1

Never, ever try to substitute Dawn dishwashing liquid for Cascade dishwashing powder. Please don't ask me how I know this - just trust me on this one.

Sunday, April 17, 2005

Goodbye weekend......sigh...

Another Sunday night. Which means closer to another Monday morning *sigh*....

We didn't do much this weekend. Or rather, I didn't do much this weekend! Jerry, on the other hand, drywalled the garage ceiling and spackled it all, and finished putting the electrical outlets where they need to be. An electrician he knows is supposed to come by sometime this week and connect everything to the house electric. Great - there goes the electric bill again!

All week we have been watching "Band of Brothers" on the History Channel. What a great series this was. Anyone who hasn't seen it really needs to. It was really hard to break away from it to get anything else done while it was on. Then last night they showed the movie "Windtalkers". This was a very good movie. It was about how the Marines used Navajo Indians to be "code talkers" during World War II. The Japanese never broke that code, even though they managed to break every other code used by the military.

I am looking forward to lunch tomorrow. Each year at Andy's school they have a special lunch for the volunteers. In previous years I didn't attend these, but I wasn't aware until last year that the teachers pay for this. Last year when Andy's teacher asked if I was going, I said no at first, but that's when I found out that she helped pay for it, and wanted me to go with her! It was a very nice lunch with lots of great food. I also didn't realize until last year that the teachers you volunteer for go too and you are their "guest". Hmmm.....I volunteer for two teachers this year - can I get two lunches?!

Friday, April 15, 2005


Friday at last! It hasn't been a bad week, but I do love Fridays! I feel like a kid again, getting to stay up late on Friday nights! Oh sure - I can do that any night of the week, but then I'd be miserable and make everyone around me the same way. Instead of staying up late reading tonight, I might pick up my knitting again. A friend and neighbor showed me a beautiful scarf she had knitted and it inspired me to learn how to knit. It's slow going, but I'm making some progress - at least after four days it's starting to look recognizable as knitting! I am, however, hearing knit 1, purl 1 in my sleep.

I was on a roll baking today - pun intended! I have a recipe for soft pretzels and Andy had asked for those, so I made a batch of those today. I need to find a new recipe, though. These didn't turn out tasting very much like the kind you get at a store. They were good, but could have been better. I use my bread machine for just about every kind of dough - so much easier.

The pretzels were made after I had baked a cake at 6:30 this morning. Strange, I know, but what a great way to heat the kitchen! It was cold in the house this morning, and I wasn't going to start a fire just for a few hours. We have a practically brand-new heat pump, but I refuse to use it. Energy efficient, my eye! Well, perhaps it is, but with our electric rates it's just very expensive to use. Everyone got a letter from the electric company in January informing us that our electric rate was going up 23%. That's a LOT! We had used the heat pump for only about five days during the last billing period, and kept a fire going the rest of the time, but I almost fainted when we got our electric bill - $251.00 for one month. Everyone around here was in shock. The lady in front of us got a bill for $200.00 - and she lives alone! The neighbors next to us got a bill for $280.00. They just built an addition to their house and weren't even in that yet, so they are dreading their bill when they actually move into the new part. So anyway, to take the chill out of the kitchen before it was time for Andy to get up, I baked a cake.

The neighbor that built the addition gave me a wonderful present today. It is a half-pint milk bottle that has "Chestnut Farms, Chevy Chase Dairy, Washington, D.C." embossed on one side, and "Safe Milk For Babies" on the other. I love it! She has a daycare in her home (hence the addition!), and sometimes I get the children off the bus for her since I'm there getting Andy anyway, and this was a thank-you gift for helping. Her husband works for a company who does a lot of excavating around here, and he finds treasure troves of stuff like this. She has quite an extensive collection of wonderful old bottles. If my camera starts to behave, I will try to take a picture of the bottle.

Well, on to my Friday is good!

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Walls CAN Talk!

Andy bought two new posters at the book fair last week. Looking around his room after he had put them up on his wall made me think about posters past and present, and gender differences in poster tastes. It seems to me that in choosing adornments for their walls, girls favor boys, and boys favor cars. I'm not sure that this ever really changes post-adolescence, either ! Tom has posters of guitar players and cars on his walls. Andy has posters of video game characters and cars on his walls. Not a female in sight.

What a difference from my friends and I when we were growing up. I had posters of David Cassidy, and then later on it was Peter Frampton who adorned my walls. One of my friends had her room plastered with pictures of Shaun Cassidy and Parker Stevenson. We would cut pictures out of Tiger Beat magazine and add to our already-cluttered walls. Another friend was not allowed to put anything on her walls - she had a lighted, framed picture of John F. Kennedy on her wall. I always thought that was a little weird.

Before cable television and internet where there is instant access to pictures of the current crush-of-the-month, we had to rely on trying to catch our faves on a television show, or waiting for the next issue of a teen magazine to come out. Times have changed, but the need for surrounding ourselves with things that interest us hasn't - it has only matured to match our grown-up interests. Well, for most of us anyway. How else can you explain the fact that women hang pictures depicting beauty, such as flowers, while men hang pictures of poker-playing dogs?!

Saturday, April 09, 2005

The plum tree in full bloom.

Too Much Me!

I have been having fun trying on clothes - right here at home! I found this virtual model site, and it's been a lot of fun. It is definitely an eye-opener as far as seeing yourself as others see you (when you are honest and enter the information as you really are!). It's also fun to see what you would look like heavier or lighter, too. I realized that there are just some things that, uh, larger women shouldn't wear, and that horizontal stripes can make one look like a barge!

Andy showed me a fun site today, too. You get to design your own roller coaster, but it takes some thinking to make it work. We adjusted the gravity too light and had the car flying (literally!) off the track!

We are enjoying the weekend - not really doing much, even though there's lots to be done. Maybe tomorrow.........

Thursday, April 07, 2005

In The Blink Of An Eye

It amazes me how quickly someone's life can change, or be taken away. Jerry is in Delaware today to have his trailer fixed. He bought his trailer there last year and has had lots of problems with it. He was looking underneath it and saw numbers on the axles; the front axle said "7" and the back axle said "6". Well, it turns out that the trailer is supposed to have two "7" (meaning 7000 pounds) axles on it, and somebody from the factory goofed. This is after Jerry had already taken it back once where they said they fixed it (but didn't). After many, many phone calls, Jerry finally got them to agree that they were responsible for putting the wrong axle in it when building it, and agreed to replace the axle with a new one, which is why he is there today. That's not the whole problem, though, and now he is waiting for someone to fix the entire thing or he told them they could have it back. The backs of the wheels on the trailer are less than half an inch away from the body of the trailer, and the last time Jerry carried a load on the trailer, the wheels rubbed on the metal body and melted the rubber off the back of the tires. After checking with several people and looking at the wheel clearance on other trailers, it was determined by the salesman, distributor and factory rep that something was indeed wrong and that maybe the trailer wasn't built to the right size specifications. Now it seems that everyone just keeps passing the buck on this problem and no one seems to want to take responsibility for fixing it; the salesman said to call the distributor; the distributor said to call the factory representative; the factory representative won't return anyone's calls. In summary, Jerry has planted himself at the trailer place where they replaced the one axle and has told them he's not leaving until someone fixes the other problem, too. (I fully expect a phone call asking for bail any moment now!).

Anyway, that explains why he is there. He called me a little while ago and said that while he was waiting there at the trailer place he saw a lot of commotion going on at the building right next to where he was. Then he saw a helicopter land there in the parking lot. One of the people working at the trailer place told Jerry that they had heard shots just a few minutes before and apparently someone had been shot right next to the building where Jerry was. While he was telling me this, I got on the internet to see if I could find out anything about it, and I found this article which explains it. It's difficult to think about the fact that we go about our everyday lives, never realizing that things can change in an instant. I am praying for those who were shot today, and as sappy as it might sound, I am also treasuring my family just a little bit more today, and thanking God that Jerry wasn't in that part of the parking lot at that particular time.

The people at the trailer place have to know by now that he is serious about getting the problem resolved; despite police and television crews swarming the area and skittish people ducking into buildings at the slightest sound, he's still there waiting, standing his ground! (I do hope someone is kind enough to provide him with a blanket should it become quitting time this evening and he's still there!)

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

View From The Swing

What a beautiful day it is today. After everything was done inside, I went outside to sit on the swing in the front yard. I love my swing. Jerry gave it to me for my birthday two years ago, and it's one of my favorite places to be. I brought a book outside with me, but the world around me held my attention too much for me to pay attention to the book.

I saw that the blossoms on the plum tree were beginning to open up. I noticed how the grass had grown so quickly after the last rain, and where there were brown dirt patches before, now there was green. I saw a chalk line drawn across the blue sky as if by an invisible hand. Oh, I know there must have been a plane before it, but I couldn't see the plane; just the line being drawn. I watched two red-tailed hawks fly back and forth bringing items to build a nest in the little patch of woods next to our driveway. One of them was carrying what looked like a very long ribbon in its beak. At least it wasn't a squirrel this time; we have seen them carry whole squirrels in their talons before. As I was pulling into the driveway one day I must have startled a hawk that was carrying a squirrel. Andy and I saw the hawk drop something large. We got out to see what it had dropped, and it was a dead squirrel. The hawk eyed us warily from a tree but didn't come back to retrieve his dinner until we had gone back up to the house.

I watched our old cardinal friend singing in the plum tree. This is a male cardinal who begins at about 7 o'clock every morning pecking at all the mirrors on all the vehicles in the driveway. He should know by now that this is his territory, but he still fights his reflection each and every morning. I saw a goldfinch eat from the thistle feeder. His dull brown winter coat has now changed to bright yellow for the summer. In between enjoying everything around me, I had to keep a close eye on our handicapped cat. I thought he would enjoy the outdoors today, so I brought him outside with me, but he was very busy, and wouldn't stay in one place very long. He acted as though the whole yard was new to him and he had to explore every part of it! When he decided to go around to the side of the house, I decided it was time to go inside. As I was walking around to the back yard, I caught sight of something else that made me glad for days like today - clothes on my clothesline! There is something very peaceful about watching clothes sway gently back and forth, and knowing that when you wear them, they will smell wonderful! In an earlier post I mentioned that I could not live where there were not four distinct seasons; I also could not live where I could not have a clothesline. Some of the new neighborhoods around me won't allow clotheslines as they feel it "detracts from the scenery", but I feel sorry for the people there. They are missing out on one of the simple pleasures of life. One day last week I had hung all of Andy's bedding outside and that night when he went to bed he exclaimed, "Mom! My blanket smells like sunshine!". I like that description very much!

Now that warm weather is here (at least for today), I will finish cleaning the back porch so we can have dinner out there tonight. Maybe I'll leave the clothes on the line until then to provide a little dinner ambiance!

Monday, April 04, 2005

Goofing Off

Yes, I'm supposed to be working now, but I just couldn't get into it, so decided to see how the sunrise looked at the different beaches. I use this link to see them.

I got to see the sunrise on Rehoboth Beach this morning!

Sunday, April 03, 2005

Time To Build An Ark!

Boy, did we have rain yesterday. Rain water rushed over the rocks that run under a footbridge in the gulley/ravine in our back yard and was like a river with small waterfalls. It would have been a lot nicer to look at if the water hadn't been so muddy. It was fascinating to watch and Andy and I walked outside to look at it. When we got near it the noise was so loud, it was hard to hear each other talk. It was just like a rushing river. I stayed out there a long time just watching it. Andy was having fun tossing small pieces of wood from the wood shed into it and watching them travel. I had intended to get pictures, but after taking three pictures of other things in the yard, my camera started acting up again. I have been using Tom's so long that I had forgotten how persnickety mine can be. Unfortunately Tom had his camera with him, so I had to use my half-working standby. Enjoying the view of the "river" in the ravine took my mind off the fact that there was also likely a "river" going directly into the septic tank again. It was just a week ago that we had the last round of rain water pumped out of it. Sure enough, this morning Jerry informed us that we had to take it easy on the water as the tank was just about full again. This whole area is so soggy and waterlogged. Our neighbors two houses further down the hill from us were having a new septic tank put in, but when the machine dug the hole, the hole kept filling up with water, and then when they put the septic tank in, it kept bobbing in the hole because of the amount of water. And they had waited for an extended dry period to do this, too, so there had been no recent rain. We have city water - it seems to me with all the new building going on here that sewer should be considered, too. Okay, enough complaining!

I am feeling restless or something today. I can't quite put my finger on it. I just feel out of sorts somehow. Maybe it's just been a long week; the first week back to school after vacation, the Terri Schiavo ordeal, the pope's passing, daylight-savings time and staying up late last night - it's probably a combination of all these things! It has certainly been a newsworthy week, anyway. Tom's friend Billy (the drummer) was over yesterday and last night all of us were playing Mario Kart racing together. Boy, those guys can race dirty! I was just trying to concentrate on keeping my go-cart on the track but they were busy shooting turtle shells at everybody else, causing lightning bolts to strike other racers, and putting banana peels out on the track for the racers behind them to hit! Jerry especially seemed to have it in for me! I managed to win a couple of races, but it was through no actual skill on my part, I assure you!

Tom's other friend Steve is home from the hospital now. Tom and his group of friends usually get together and go to dinner on Friday nights and Steve actually went to dinner with them this week. Of course, he still can't drive or get around very easily as he has a hip cast and brace on one leg and one arm in a cast. Apparently when the front of the other car struck the driver's side of Steve's car, the top of his leg at the ball of his hip just popped right out of his hip joint. Tom said his leg didn't break, his hip just totally dislocated and he said the x-ray showed the ball of his hip six inches away from where it was supposed to be. That hurts just thinking about it. Anyway, that's why he's in the leg cast and brace because they did surgery for that and then they had to reconstruct one elbow. Tom said Steve told everyone at dinner Friday that he has a new appreciation for his parents, friends, and life itself, and that he realizes how close he came to losing it all. He is indeed a blessed young man. I don't say lucky, because I don't believe in luck - I believe in blessings as I believe someone is in charge.

Well, now that this daylight-savings thing is upon us, I guess that means dinner time rolls around an hour earlier, so I guess I'd better get with the program. I cooked a big roast last night, so I'll just figure out something to do with that, I guess. I made cinnamon rolls this morning - why can't we just have those?!


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