serendipitous reflections

Friday, March 31, 2006

Happy Birthday DAD!!

Kid in a candy shop...This was from Christmas 2004 when Sue gave Dad his Big Bertha Club. You would have thought he was given the keys to the candy shop. I just love this picture.

Happy Birthday DAD!! Posted by Picasa

Thursday, March 30, 2006

This is what Lisa's birthdays used to look like....

Nothing gets between Lisa and a bottle of Mad Dog. hehehehe I think this picture is a hoot. It's from my 30th birthday retro prom, but I'm sure if we look hard enough we have some that look like this from high school!! Posted by Picasa

Lisa's birthdays now....

This is what they look like now...I know it's Gracie's party, but my, look how far we've come from just three years ago.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY LISA!! Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Brown Bear, Brown Bear

We also got Gracie a new copy of "Brown Bear, Brown Bear." She made a point to tell Jeni that her copy was ripped when they were at Target with us, so Jeni couldn't resist getting her a new one. Posted by Picasa

Ladybug sandbox

We got Gracie a sandbox and sand toys and a few others got her beach toys too, which was perfect. Gracie had lots of fun with the sand, and most of it actually stayed in the sandbox. Posted by Picasa

Summertime Fun

Gracie had big fun on her new Summertime Fun swingset. The slide was her favorite. Posted by Picasa

Gracie sports a windblown hairdo

This is what happens when Uncle Dean dresses Gracie. She gets to go out with "that windblown" hairstyle. In my defense, it was very windy that morning. Posted by Picasa

Inside balloon flower

Here is a good picture of one of the balloons inside. They looked so great and were a bunch of fun to make. Posted by Picasa

Balloon flowers

Jeni had this great article from Martha Stewart Living from several years ago showing how to make giant flowers from balloons. We made a bunch of these, and Jeni and Lisa put them on the front porch of the house for Gracie's birthday. We also used them throughout the house. Posted by Picasa

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Get Human

Do you actually want to call customer service and get some customer service? Visit Get Human. This website has a growing database of 800-numbers and how to get through to an actual human. What a unique idea!

Friday, March 24, 2006

Please update

I know she's busy, but I wish Nikki would update her blog. She tells such funny stories and you know Evan has been up to something with t-ball season in full swing!

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Turn your face into a pirolette

You know that old visual illusion, is it a vace or two faces? Now you can make one of your own face. This is a really neat website, and really, I don't this $149.95 is a bad price for this ...

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Sordid Lives

We went to the Workshop Theater production of Sordid Lives Friday night with Bill and Barbara, and Tiffany came in to town to go along with us. She had introduced us to the "black comedy about white trash" about a year ago, and as soon as we saw it was coming to town, we just knew we had to go. We went on opening night, and it runs through April 1 (St. Patrick's Day to April Fools...). It was a great rendition of the movie and very well done. We highly recommend it!

Monday, March 20, 2006

Crazy juggling

Cathy had shared this amazing video of a juggler, then I happened to stumble across another video of someone who decided to do the first show, but with five instead of three. Watch the first, then the second and be amazed. There's a ton of multiplexing (two or more balls thrown at the same time from the same hand) and some great numbers tricks.


Smokey VIII, Tennessee's winningest mascot, passed away. He was 11 years old, and spent eight seasons with the Vols, with a 91-22 record and a national championship.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Blingo is my search-o

Have you tried Blingo as your search engine yet? No spam, no junk, just Google search results and FREE PRIZES! I won a movie pass back in December, and by winning, my brother did too because he referred me. Click below, sign up, and start searching. Blingo has started giving away more prizes, faster, during an occasional Blingo Frenzy, so check it out.


Friday, March 17, 2006

Back up...

Some of you may have noticed the "Forbidden" message the past few days. Apparently Blogger had some trouble with a "filer" that hosted our blog, but it appears to be fixed (yea!).

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Dog Eat Doug

I have a morning routine that started as a child -- reading the comics as I eat my cereal. This has evolved into reading the comics online as I try to defend my cereal from Maggie, but the essence has remained the same. A while back, I stumbled across a comic strip on a blog called Dog Eat Doug, and it quickly became one of my favorites. Now, among Overboard, Foxtrot and Non Sequitur, is my daily dose of Dog Eat Doug (link to the daily strip). If you enjoy nice comics, check it out.

Monday, March 13, 2006

Cats and dogs living in harmony

Brother and sister playing together (while not actually having to interact) ... thanks to WiFi Nintendo DS. They were racing each other on Mario Kart DS. Posted by Picasa

Going for the ball

Evan sprints from his position at shortstop to go after a short hit. It was a lot of fun watching the little ones chase the ball and run the bases. For their first game, these little guys did a great job. Posted by Picasa

Evan's Opening Day Parade

Evan walked in an Opening Day Parade for his tee-ball team. He managed to hang on to the balloon for the entire 45 minutes of ceremony before releasing the balloon at the end to mark the beginning of the season. Posted by Picasa

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

To be 12 again...

I went to my neice Sarah's Xanga blog and really enjoyed reading her list of interests. Reminds me what it was like to be 12... "Interests: I like art and drawing and writing and coloring with crayons and swimming and macaroni and cheese and root beer and biking and computering and playing with my dog and blowing into my straw to make bubbles in my drink and that really annoys my mom and watching fish swim around and lots of other things that I can't think of cuz my brain just died." My favorite is "blowing into my straw to make bubbles in my drink and that really annoys my mom."

Brock Rocked

Our nephew Brock and his band, Underscore, really got their groove on at the Blues Society Jam (Boise, ID). This review was very complimentary of their poise and talent. These boys are 7th graders and are out there playing some serious music. If you go to Brock's website, you can hear some of their music. If you are in Boise, and see these boys playing, stop by and give them a few minutes.

YOU ROCK BROCK! Posted by Picasa

Valentine's Day Soaps

I decided this year to make hand soaps for Dean's office staff for Valentine's Day. It really turned out to very easy. I followed the directions from Martha Stewart, and they turned out very cute. The only problem I ran into was with the heart-shaped cookie cutters. They were metal and would sometimes start to bend after a couple of cuts. So some of the soaps had a little different heart shape to them, which actually turned out pretty cute.

I bought all the supplies at Hobby and Lobby, but I couldn't find the little metal letters to stamp words on them, but I'm still looking. There's always next year.


Stamped soaps, inspired by candy conversation hearts, are great gifts for friends. Put in cellophane bags tied with tags; adorn with glitter.

Nonstick 9-inch square pan
Heart-shape cookie cutter
Glass measuring cup
Glycerin soap
Bench scraper
Soap colorant or food coloring
Spray bottle filled with rubbing alcohol
Cutting board
Needlenose pliers
1/8-inch metal letter stamps
Masking tape

We used a 2-inch cookie cutter (1 inch high) and 2 1/2 pounds of glycerin soap-sold at crafts stores-to make 16 hearts.

1. Depending on your equipment, yields may vary. To determine how much glycerin you'll need, fill pan with water to 1/4 inch below height of cookie cutter; pour water into measuring cup. Record amount; discard water.

2. Cut soap into small pieces with bench scraper; fill measuring cup. Microwave on medium heat until melted; stir. Add soap and heat until you've reached the water amount. Add colorant; stir. Pour liquid into pan. Spray with alcohol to eliminate bubbles.

3. Let harden at room temperature, 2 hours. Freeze 10 minutes.

4. Turn upside down onto cutting board. Create soaps with cookie cutter; pull cutter out with pliers if it sticks. Tape stamps together to form words, and imprint on soap, applying light, even pressure.
Posted by Picasa

The final product- packaged and ready to go. We also attached Valentine's Day cards good for one free Krispy Kreme. Each staff member received 3 soaps and I think they all really like them.Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Kung Fu

We were talking at work yesterday and in the typical way that conversations end up somewhere weird, we ended up talking about Salt-N-Pepa. This made me think of their first hit "Push It" which was big when we first went to Ocean Isle and I remember playing Kung Fu and listening to "Push It" at the arcade at the pier. So I'm thinking, is that game really called Kung Fu, or something else, and a quick search later not only confirms that it is Kung Fu Master, but you can play it online free! It was one of my favorite games at the time ... it's amazing how far we've come.

Sunday, March 05, 2006

Nathan update

Back around September, we told about our friend Hannah's brother getting seriously injured in Iraq. We tried to keep everyone updated. Around Christmas, there was fear that he may lose his leg. Well, last week we got an e-mail forwarded on from Hannah's mom that they were heading home, that Nathan had shown great improvement, and even though he had more surgery down the road, he was ready to be out of the center where he was and would be working at a recruitment station. Thank you all for keeping him in your thoughts and prayers the past five-and-a-half months. I know this has been a tough time for them, but thankfully things are turning out OK.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Big Orange checkerboard

Did you catch the highlights of the UT-Kentucky game? (ok, UT lost by two, but that's not the point...) Tennessee coordinated a t-shirt giveaway with seating sections to create the traditional orange and white checkerboard out of the fans. Go to the game wrapup and click on "Game Highlights" and you will see a great shot of the arena at the beginning.


I stumbled across this website today (yes, slow at work...) and it was neat seeing some of the food I ate when in Nepal, but I never had the Milk Burfi, and honestly, just to say it makes me not want to eat it... The Buffalo Momo were very good, as I recall.