Archive for January, 2012

January is over. Already.

How does the time go SO fast!? We just celebrated the new year, and the first month is over already. I think it was good that I made no resolutions, as I have not done anything particularly different yet this year. I have goals, but have barely begun to work on them. One of them is to get more exercise, because I am very out of shape. I began yesterday by riding my bike around the block twice (a mile), and repeated that again today (except we went around a longer block instead of twice around the short block).

What are you doing to meet your goals for the new year?

January Update Letter

Dear Family & Friends,

First, I want to apologize for the length between update letters! I had intended to send one at Christmas time, but obviously I failed. I hope you had a pleasant holiday season and I hope this letter finds you feeling well.

I haven’t written since August. I know there have been things that happened in that time, but most of it is a blur to me. I’ll try to hit the highlights, anyway.

In September, Robby turned 45 and Rachel turned 17. We went ice skating for Rachel’s birthday in what has become a tradition (or, anyway, it was our second year in a row to do it). She really enjoys ice skating. She received art supplies, mostly, and has enjoyed creating beautiful pictures.

In October, Timmy turned 15. I still can’t get over how fast these kids are growing, you know?

Also in October, I had the privilege of going to a ladies’ meeting at a church in Hartselle, AL, where a lady was speaking who had grown up with rheumatoid arthritis. She was diagnosed at 18 months! Her story was quite inspirational, as she discussed how she could only make it through with God’s help.

In November, we had Thanksgiving, and Robby’s youngest sister Cathy was able to be here with her family. It was very good to see them, and the cousins had a great time playing together.

I was also able to get a great deal on a train table and train set for the little kids in November, and they really enjoyed it! I like that the train is expandable with most wooden train sets.

A couple days after Thanksgiving, John Luke turned 6. He bought a toy rifle with his birthday money and dressed in camo and an army hat to pose for this picture.

Of course, we had Christmas in December. Robby’s sister Stephanie and her children were able to be here this year, and it was great! Bobby & Alex spent a lot of time together and we really enjoyed getting to visit with them for a few days.

This month so far, Nathaniel has turned 12. He was given a bicycle for his birthday and is thrilled with that!

We have had pleasant weather, for the most part, and some days were practically summer-like, which has been very nice. I hope that your new year so far has been going well, too.

God bless you!

Why do I write?

Why do I write? I write for many reasons. Some of these include: to process things; to vent; for fun; to share information; and to connect with others. What motivates me to write? Feelings are often motivators – when my emotions run high, writing offers an outlet that may not be otherwise available. This includes both positive and negative emotions. When I’m angry, a rant to a blank sheet of paper is more productive than venting all over someone who is not even involved in whatever it was that made me angry. When I’m overwhelmed by gratitude, writing that out (and sending it!) is an excellent way to express it – and a lasting one.

Now, that only applies to the dribbling, rambling sort of writing (which is, admittedly, much of what I do), but there is also the literary side of writing. For example, I entered NaNoWriMo in 2011, and even though I didn’t win, I wrote more than I have in any previous attempt. Why do I want to write a novel (of which I have two started now)? For one thing, I have always enjoyed reading. What could be better than being on the other end of that? As much as I have enjoyed reading, creating a work that others can enjoy would be immensely satisfying.

As for inspiration, that is more difficult. I usually have to work at finding things about which to write. My brother and my daughter seem to have never-ending waterfalls of ideas, but I have to chip bits of idea from solid granite.

Penguin Cupcakes

I saw a link to these on Facebook. They are so cute, and look like they would be pretty easy to make. It’s just cupcakes and Oreos, for the most part. Check them out here: Penguin Cupcakes.


I found out about this book in a rousing bit of that family fun thing that I did discuss in a post prior. This book contains not that thing that most usually shows up in works of fact or fiction, and it is difficult to avoid it. I found a wild thrill at this finding. If I can, I want to obtain a copy of it.



Adding: a copy is found on

Wordless Wednesday*


*what? You thought there would be a picture?


Quelf is an amusing and delightful game in which players act like idiots without it being a problem. Everyone gets in on the fun and it is a blast! There are five categories of cards and eight character pieces (each with its own personality, as shown by quotes on the cards). Apparently some boxes also include biographies of the characters, but the game I bought at Walmart did not include these. The cards include trivia, stuntz, showbiz, a Scattergories-style one, and roolz. This is a game that you really can’t appreciate until you play it for yourself!

Schedules, School, and Sleepiness

So here it is, Monday again and a new week. A new year! So we started to follow our schedule (which I created a few months ago, and it worked great the single day in which we managed to follow it successfully). So far, we only missed one thing on it today.

School is in progress, and one of my students has already finished for the day. Another is working diligently, and a third is … not.

The biggest issue with restarting the schedule is the time at which we need to arise. We are, unfortunately, a family of night-owls, and getting up at 6am is not the preference here. We have found, however, that we get more done if we get up earlier and get busy, so here we are. Again. Yawning abounds, and naps are being requested.

We’ll see how long it lasts this time around…

Happy New Year 2012!

It is incredible that it is already 2012! Where are the flying cars? Where are the silvery jumpsuits that automatically make everyone skinny and fit? Where are the robots that do all our work for us and even keep us company?

I guess that’s why they call it “Science FICTION.”