Camp Clothes…UGH!

My sweet little JP came home from pre-teen camp yesterday afternoon.  He had an awesome time.  Apparently, he and two of his friends became camp champions in a 3-on-3 basketball tournament, and he came in 10th place out of 50 in an ironman-type kid’s triathalon.  He’s very athletic, can you tell?  He was suntanned, and I think he might have possibly grown a bit taller in the week he was away.

More importantly, he grew in his faith during the week, thanks to his great counselor Mark Nichols.  He loved the band, Godstruck, and he said the worship leader (Drew Worsham) was really cool.  I believe it’s beginning to sink in that you can be a really cool dude, play music, even be a skateboarder, and be true to your faith in God.  JP got to “hang out” with the band, and thought it was cool that the drummer gave him one of his sticks.

JP said the food wasn’t very good, but of course, it’s camp.  It’s not gourmet.  LOL!

All that being said, I was so excited to have him home.  I missed him and all his noise.  That is, until I opened the laundry room door at home this morning and found five little plastic “walmart” type sacks, each one tied up in a knot, and each one full of wet, sandy, mucky clothes.  You could tell they’d been tied up in the heat, because each one was full of condensation on the inside.   Oh Lord, please help.  I had to pick each one up, open the bags, and force the contents into the washer without breathing.  Oy.  What were these kids doing all week?  Rolling on the ground?  Wading in pond scum?  I set the washer on the hottest setting, regardless of the color or the fabric.  I don’t really even remember what he took to wear, but whatever it is, it’s getting scalded.  I’d add Clorox if I thought I could get away with it.  I added a Tide Stain Remover packet too.  I figure anything helps at this point, right?

I’m so thankful he got to go to camp, and had a meaningful and fun time there.  Just like all the sand and muck in his camp clothes, staying at camp last week I pray will have the effect of washing away some of the dirt and muck in his life and help to mold him into the young man that I see…that God sees…in his heart.  Like the old saying goes, it all comes out in the wash.  🙂



Good Friends and Good Wine…

I had a back-to-school book club meeting at my house last night, just me and about 25 girlfriends.  And yes, we did discuss a book at least once during the evening.  I think.  It was so much fun!  We laughed, talked, ate, drank, and laughed and drank some more.

The Toe Lady, AKA Melissa, was here and painted toes for us as well as put feathers in the hair of them most daring girls…LOL.  Of course, I had to get a few.  I’m getting my hair done today so I’ll post pictures of the new hair and the feathers later this afternoon.  My toes look so cute!  I picked a pink and brown “squiggle” design.  Melissa does such beautiful work.  It’s like each toenail is a little canvas for a piece of artwork.  Her book of designs is incredible.  I highly recommend you look her up and book her for a Toe Party –



Life is so much more richly blessed when you have good friends to share it with.  I am a lucky, lucky girl to have the friends, the family, and the life I have today.  I pray that each of you have strong friendships that help you through life’s good times and bad times.




A buffet of possibilities…or Buffett, as the case may be.

I was going through some things from the conference I attended a couple of weeks ago and a random paper reminded me of one of the speakers.  He talked about being your own superhero, finding your passion, yadda yadda yadda.  Now don’t get me wrong, he was awesome and I love motivational speakers in general.  One thing he said, however, really kind of stayed with me and the memory was triggered today.

Who would you rather be, if given the choice, between Warren Buffett and Jimmy Buffett?


That’s a tough call.

One is one of the richest men on the planet and is a consummate philanthropist as well as one of the most savvy investors ever.  The other is a legendary singer, songwriter, author, producer, cook, and has legions of fans known as “parrotheads.”  Both live incredible and enviable lifestyles and are highly successful in their chosen endeavors.  They probably share many similarities…as many as their differences, I’d assume.

To highlight some of the differences in personality, just read a quote or two from each.  First up is from Warren:

 A public-opinion poll is no substitute for thought. 

There seems to be some perverse human characteristic that likes to make easy things difficult. 

Then we have a couple of my favorites from Jimmy:

People who think too much before they act don’t act too much.

Wrinkles will only go where the smiles have been. 

Others have pondered the Buffetts before, obviously.  There is even a book available called Invest Like Warren Buffett, Live Like Jimmy Buffett.


I think if I had the choice, I’d choose Jimmy over Warren.  I’ve never been materialistic, so all that money from ol’ Warren would probably just frustrate me and bring out the worst in not only myself but people around me.  Besides, how can you turn down my all-time favorite Jimmy-ism?

If life hands you limes, make margaritas!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on this one…

How hot is it?

Oy vey.  It’s as hot as I can ever recall it being, and I’ve lived 41 and 3/4 years in northeast Texas.  Believe me, I’ve seen hot.


I survived the heat wave of 1980.  In fact, my mom bought me a t-shirt that said so.  I remember wearing it to school the first day back from summer vacation when I started the 6th grade.  I only thought it was hot then.  I was a kid, so what did I know?  I spent my time in the pool or in the A/C at the skating rink.  LOL!

Now I am a bona fide adult and have to work for a living.  Hot + work = much misery, even when work is inside with a fairly functional A/C.  The whole driving there, getting out, walking in, etc. is just icky.  Today I started back to work after having six glorious weeks of vacation time.  I think I sweated off most of my makeup before 8:30 am.  I moved furniture, changed bulletin boards, rearranged, threw away, and reconfigured several of the rooms in my building.  Needless to say, by lunchtime, I had no makeup left and my hair was looking like a mop.  I was a hot mess, for sure.

I did accomplish much today.  I am really excited about the upcoming school year and look forward to working in my new position as the CTE (Career and Technical Education) Counselor.  I have an awesome boss and I get to help break in a new principal.  😉  That being said, however, I am still incredibly sad that Project HOPE has been shut down.  Throwing out old (and some really, really old) day care items and storing things that might be reused by PreK and K was difficult for me today…so many memories.  So many babies have come through the program in 21 years.  I’ve had the privilege and the blessing to have spent 9 years there, bonding with children and their moms, praying for them, hoping to give them enough support to help them achieve their potential.  The students and babies of Project HOPE have taught me so much more than I feel that I ever taught them.

Enough sadness…I really do look forward to the new position and working with more students and the great CTE department at the high school.  I have lots of ideas and plans for the year, and can’t wait to get started.


Hey Lady…

Yes, you lady…the one sitting four seats down from me in the movie theater.  You, the grown @$$ woman with her teenage kids (who, by the way, ARE NOT bothering anyone).  Could you please put your phone away and stop texting?  The bright white iPhone screen is blinding my peripheral vision and distracting me while I try to watch this awesome movie.  Every time you press the button, the screen lights up like a spotlight.  Seriously?  The 12 year old next to me isn’t texting as much as you are.  I might expect it from her.  There might be a mutiny in the 14th row here momentarily, however, if you DON’T PUT YOUR FREAKING PHONE AWAY!!!

Whew.  Glad I got that out of my system.

Anyhoo…went to see Cowboys & Aliens last night.  AWESOME!!!  I liked it very much.  Lots and lots and lots of action, and I mean, really, what movie can go wrong with Harrison Ford AND Daniel Craig?  The special effects are incredible, and the way the two worlds of space and the old west come together is just so cool.  If you like action movies, you’ll like this one.


There is a lot of violence.  Quite a bit of blood, both human and alien, and lots of shooting, blowing up, stabbing, and other kinds of deadly mayhem.  I would not recommend this for kids under about 10.  It might scare the pants off of them.  The aliens are definitely creepy.  There were even a couple of times I practically jumped out of my skin.  The way the aliens attack the humans is bordering on Friday the 13th kind of gore, but it’s not quite that bad.  Just a word of warning, in case you want to take the kiddos to see it.

All in all, it was worth $7.00 for the ticket and I’d probably even buy it when it comes out on DVD.  See it and judge for yourself.

What’s YOUR happiest day?

My 11 year old son asked me today, “Mom, what was your happiest day ever?”  I was kind of stunned, because I’ve never really thought about it.  I mean, of course, the days each of my sons were born rank up there, but that’s too obvious.  My wedding days (first AND second) were both fabulous, but again, everyone would pick those.  I had to think.

If I had to put a date on it, I think that one of my happiest days was August 19, 1996.  That was the very first day that I was the teacher in my very own classroom.  My room, my students, my lesson plans, my chalk on the chalkboard rail (yes, back then, we used chalk…none of that dry erase board nonsense).  I was terrified before the first bell rang, but as the day went on, I got less and less nervous.  The kids, believe it or not, didn’t bite.  I wasn’t tearing my hair out or running away screaming.  It was FUN.  I loved that day!  I remember the euphoric feeling after the last kid left that afternoon…that feeling of “Wow, I can do this.”  It was very empowering.

I’ve had so many happy days.  I’ve been blessed beyond belief to have more happy days than any other kind in my 41 years.  Yeah, there have been some tough ones and some crappy ones and some that I wish I could erase or do over, but overall, there have been so many happy ones that I can’t complain.  Not at all.  The way I see it, if you are alive, have a little food to eat, a roof over your head, some change in your pocket, know Jesus, and treasure the love of friends and family, every day has the potential to be your best day yet.

What was your happiest day?

PS.  Here’s a picture of the sunset today.  Today was a pretty good day, too.  😉

Sunset over the country club

Waxing nostalgic…

I found myself thinking back to long-ago times this evening.  Being that this is my 4th decade on this planet, I’ve been allowed to see some pretty incredible stuff in my lifetime so far, and I love thinking about the things that shaped my generation, be they good, bad, or indifferent.

I was born in 1969 (after the lunar landing).   I don’t remember a lot of the 70’s except for sporadic things here and there.  I remember seeing Star Wars in the movie theater.  I remember my Green Machine and my Donny and Marie dolls (with their tour van and stage).  I remember my Mrs. Beasley doll (I was a huge fan of the show “A Family Affair” on TV)…but the 80’s…wow, those WERE the days.

I remember dragging my mom through Toys”R”Us to find the latest Star Wars figures (yes, even though I was a  girl) when The Empire Strikes Back came out.  I waited in line 6 hours to see Return of the Jedi.  I give major props to my mom, because I dragged her around a lot…looking for the perfect Jordache jeans, Polo button down shirts, and totally cool lavender Nikes with the white swoosh.   I won’t even mention her wild, statewide search for the elusive Cabbage Patch Kid doll in 1983.

I remember ankle boots, socks with lace around the edges, jelly shoes, leg warmers, neon ANYTHING, and of course, huge hair.  I guess the idea was the higher the hair, the closer to God.  I myself had the lovely bi-level ‘do, commonly referred to today as a mullet.  You know, business in the front, party in the back.  Exhibit A is from my junior year of high school:

1985-1986, 11th Grade

I remember Bon Jovi, Van Halen, Wham, Culture Club,  The Cure (I was going to marry Robert Smith someday), Duran Duran (and if not Robert, then Simon Lebon was my second choice), John Cougar, Cyndi Lauper, Madonna, and Huey Lewis and the News.  They wrote the soundtrack of my life.  That soundtrack was mostly on cassette tapes, but I fondly remember paying almost $600 for my first CD player when I got my very first income tax refund in 1988.

I remember the skating rink…man that was so much fun back then!  The anticipation before they announce “couples skate,” hoping the boy you liked would ask you to skate with him.  Skating and going to the movies were the two of the coolest things to do.  Speaking of which…oh the 80’s movies!!!!

The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Sixteen Candles, Say Anything, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, Some Kind of Wonderful, Less than Zero, St. Elmo’s Fire, E.T., Raiders of the Lost Ark, Back to the Future, Ghostbusters, The Goonies, The Karate Kid, Weird Science, Die Hard, Top Gun…the list goes on and on.  I consider it an act of good parenting that my children have been forced to watch most of these.  😉

I remember when the Challenger exploded, our whole school stopped and watched the events taking place on a TV in the library.  I remember when John Lennon was shot, because my 6th grade teacher was crying in class and we all asked her what happened, so she told us.  I remember “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!”  I remember hearing on the news about the discovery of a strange disease called AIDS.

What are the things you remember most about growing up?   Do they make you long for the good old days, or are you glad time has moved everything forward?  Did they help shape you into who you are today?–KJk-kgw

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