Sunday, July 31, 2011

Summer is Almost Over

Ten days of summer left for me. It seems odd that 'summer" will be over, when, according to the calendar, we are not even halfway through the season of summer yet.

I've still got a few things to do, necessary things, like clean out the medical receipts drawer. I ought to take everything out of the china cabinet, wash it all in hot soapy water, clean the shelves, and return it. Amazing how dusty, and even a little greasy, the glassware in there can get, even when in a cabinet with closed glass doors that are rarely opened. I'd like to go to Commerce - nothing badly needed, just feel like the summer isn't the summer unless I've walked through my favorite stores in Commerce. I'd like to go to an old hardware store in a little town in Georgia - supposed to be quite a destination. But it is so, so, sticky hot that little trips like that lose their appeal.

The adrenaline for starting back is starting to flow - the mental organization and thought process that happens around this time of the year. I probably ought to go to school and work for a day or two. There's something about coming in the first morning of inservice and at least be partially underway with the necessary work, that is good for the psyche.

I also probably ought to go in and run a bunch of copies before codes are put on the copy machine!

I have not yet had my annual dream of having a class that is completely out of control - the same dream every summer, for 30+ years now. Summer can't be over until I have that dream!

Friday, July 29, 2011

A Simple but Good Bible Study Idea

If you're looking for a good Bible study idea that doesn't require lots of extras, you might be interested in this. Rand suggested it to our students the last time we were at camp, and I tried it this summer.

It's this: Go through the book of Psalms and write down every attribute or promise of God. You can use a computer or write things down longhand or tailor it any way you please. Just look for the statements about God. You will be amazed at how many you find. So far, through Psalm 96, I have written down 12 pages, front and back - that comes to over 620 attributes and promises, with over a third of the book yet to go.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Squash Fritters

I made these about a week ago - went to and combined several recipes. They really were more of a squash pancake than a fritter. They're mainly shredded squash, an egg, a little flour, and seasonings. I added parmesan cheese (the shredded, not the powdered, kind). We liked them very much.

The second batch, a few days later, I added panko bread crumbs. The fritters were too soft and runny to say that they were "rolled" in crumbs, but I did dust each side with them. The added texture really added to the taste and made them even better.

Unfortunately, I had very little luck with my squash plants this year. All seven of them over the past couple of months made big, beautiful plants - but didn't produce any squash. I read somewhere that you can use a Q-tip to pollinate the female blossoms using pollen from the male ones. (Did you know that squash blossoms are gender specific??!! The female ones are slightly swollen at the base.) I just couldn't see myself doing that. I'll just buy squash at the farmer's market.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Quartet at Oakwood

The Calvary Quartet came to Oakwood last night. Unfortunately my camera takes videos that are too big to post on here. I don't understand this megabyte issue and why videos taken on some people's cameras will post just fine, but mine are too big. Anyway, they sang well. We had some 35 people at the house for BBQ afterward. Always nice to have the quartet come by, along with their local family members who ride down for the evening. I wonder what the neighbors thought about the huge traveling bus parked out on the road!!!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Minor Fix

Not to bore anyone with medical things, or sound like a little old lady who can't talk about anything else - but something else that happened with the same doctor I saw Wednesday. I did NOT see her about ankle/foot pain that has plagued me for months, but she happened to notice something during the exam. "Did you know you have a fallen arch on your left foot?" So I spent $15 on four arch supports for the left shoe of the four pairs I wear the most. As long as I wear those shoes, the pain is no longer a problem. Minor fix for what had been a very vexing problem. Nice that it was a cheap fix also!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Not That High

So I had a doctor's appt. yesterday, and the nursing assistant routinely takes my blood pressure. The cuff fit fine - not too small or any effort getting it on. She says "It's 146/96." She didn't think anything of it, didn't ask any questions, and started to write it down. "Whoa," I respond, "something is not right. My blood pressure is usually very close to normal." She gets a different cuff, one with a larger width, and re-takes my BP. 126/80.

What if I hadn't said anything! I might be on medication by tonight.

Makes me wonder how often these machines and equipment might be wrong. Also makes me see how important it is to be familiar with one's own body and what normal readings usually are.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

"I'm Sick"

When ML had strep throat a week ago, the timing was both fortunate and unfortunate. Good in that she got sick on Thursday night, and since her summer school class is Monday-Thursday, she didn't miss any classes or labs at all. Bad in that she had a huge test on the hardest part of the course material that Monday.

She went to the teacher after turning in her test and told her that, though she knew it didn't make any difference, she wanted the teacher to know that she had been very sick with strep throat and not able to study until Sunday afternoon, and if her grade was not good, it was because of that -- not because she didn't care about doing well. (Which was, I thought, the best way to handle it.)

But, being a teacher myself, I know how often students use sickness as an excuse to get out of things. Unfortunately they are often enabled by parents. When I get a note saying "Please excuse ___ for not completing ___. He was not feeling well." -- I know that more than likely the student was tired, or just didn't feel like doing the work, or whatever, and talked Mama into writing a note. "Not feeling well" is not the same as "sick."

The extreme of this situation is what we always have two or three of every year: students who get to 19 absences in a class, the absences almost always scattered in nature, at about February or March. They automatically fail the class at 20 absences. It is amazing how they are able to get to school without any absences for the rest of the year.

Anyway - the point is this: There is a high enough percentage of enabled and not really necessary absences, that teachers get a bit jaded at some point. Then, when someone like ML comes along, who had a real and debilitating (for a few days) illness, the teacher has to make a judgment as to whether it is legitimate or not. Fortunately, when a student has a good track record, as ML does, it makes it a little easier to judge correctly. I certainly hope that was the case in ML's situation with her teacher.

Friday, July 15, 2011

No Root Canal for Now?

So I saw the dentist Monday, for a terrific toothache the night before, in a tooth which has been going downhill for some time (probably since it got loaded with filling when I was a kid). He gave me a prescription for amoxicillin and said that if that didn't help, I'll need a root canal.

Well, I took the prescription and got it filled and thought, "Yeah, yeah, this isn't going to help at all - just a routine to go through. The nerve is deteriorating and this is just putting off the inevitable." But I've faithfully taken the pills twice a day all week.

Two nights ago, hot food did not affect that tooth as much as it has been. And in the last two days it has been slowly improving. I just now ate an ear of corn cooked in the microwave - ate it very carefully - and had very minimal pain.

Maybe the amoxicillin really is helping! I'll take it!!! (literally and figuratively)

Thursday, July 14, 2011

$5 Worth of Peaches!

Stopped at a peach shed and told the teenage boy running it that I needed some that were usable today. He showed me a box of what he called overripes, but which I could see were perfectly good peaches at their peak ripeness -- about 30-35 in the box. I asked him how much - he thought a minute and said "Five dollars?" I got the better end of that deal.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

My Son is OK

My son is OK. Sore but uninjured. And very much alive.
The people in the other car were uninjured also.
So grateful to God for those blessings.

Last night we got one of those phone calls that every parent dreads. "Mom, I was just in a wreck." He looked down for a minute. Went around a curve and rear-ended a man with a child in the back seat.

His truck has a large repair bill but was not totaled.

He is very sore tonight. His grandparents went to visit him and be an encouragement to him, which he appreciated greatly. He has learned a valuable lesson.

And I am just thankful that he is OK.

Monday, July 11, 2011

When It Rains. . .

. . .Mary Lee had strep throat this weekend, 102-104 degree fever consistently for three days.

. . .Mike had a broken tooth, turned out to be a cracked filling, which had to be repaired.

. . .I had a bad toothache last night so went to the dentist also - maybe a small infection, otherwise, the big RC (root canal) coming down the pike.

If it's not one thing it's another!

Too hot to think of something "intellectual" for a post. Temps in 90s and humidity makes it above 100 heat index. Whew--

Friday, July 8, 2011

Another Nostalgia Photo Post

Hanging around the house today because I don't like to go too far away when my daughter has a 102 fever and strep throat. So here is another nostalgia post of old pictures.

These first two I call the pictures of "my two hippies." In the first one they were just "hanging out" one day when we still lived in Taylors. But don't they look like a couple of wild men?!!

I have no idea what Mike was painting here to be dressed so raggedly, but they sure were having a good time.

ML and Aunt Rhoda

Both children with cousins--

This was a Christmas card one year. Today seemed like the perfect time to post it since the sunflowers outside are currently in full bloom. Sometime soon I'll post a pic. of the volunteer sunflowers that have grown under where the birdfeeders were last winter! Anyway, I thought the pic. below was really sweet - especially in ML's special sunflower dress that, I think, Grandma and Aunt Rhoda made.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A Must-Read Link

This woman - a cousin of our former youth pastor's wife - is facing death due to cancer. This is how a Christian can have peace and assurance in facing death.

Thoughts About Casey Anthony and Other Stuff

What bothers me most about the Casey Anthony verdict is that the jury didn't even see fit to convict her of aggravated child abuse. I can see why they didn't feel that there was enough evidence for first degree murder. (I thought she'd get 2nd degree, or aggravated manslaughter.) But - a woman who doesn't report her child missing for a month? Is that not aggravated child abuse? Could they not find something in those charges to convict her for her bad behavior?

Next thought: I am seeing more and more that poverty has deep roots. There are very few people who are desperately poor, or homeless, or with addiction issues, that can be described as "blameless." Those who work with very needy people have to deal with their reactions to such things. You can't really say "Well, if you had done [such and such], you wouldn't be in this boat." If you give to such people, you have to make peace with that reaction. Which of course, is why Christ's love is so unbelievable - He could have said to all of us, "You bear blame, so you are responsible and must take the punishment." But He didn't.

Final thought: I am also seeing more and more that the people who live upright lives, save their money, determine to be responsible for themselves and their children, are the ones who will be "punished" financially. Want to go to school and have no money? Free government grants. (Never mind why you have no money - that you spent what you did have, didn't work, or whatever.) But those who have some saved - they don't qualify. Need medical care? Say you don't have insurance. They'll see you anyway. Our system rewards bad behavior in so many ways.

So much for miscellaneous thoughts this morning! Besides that, it's time to get some breakfast for daughter who is going to summer school, then get going on this house. Maybe.

Saturday, July 2, 2011


Went through 10 years of Christmas cards tonight. I've been going through memorabilia the last few days and have condensed seven boxes down to three. So many memories. I found a lot of old letters, get-well cards from pneumonia & surgery, baby cards, wedding cards, thank-you notes, birthday cards, pictures, calendars, and much more.

What's interesting is that there are notes from students that I don't remember who they are any more. (But considering that there are now close to 2,000 former students, maybe that is understandable.) However, most of them I do remember, well, and it was fun to read their old notes.

Then there are the photos and written things from my own childhood, and notes and cards from my family.

Hard to throw anything out. I kept the really good stuff, but some of it had to go.