Wednesday, May 18, 2011


Did he just trip my son????

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I am not quite sure what is wrong with me these days but my spirit is yearning to go to England and France. I picked up a book in a doctor's office about The Heart of France put out by Victoria magazine and I suddenly felt this yearning to go there. I was watching Masterpiece yesterday and my heart just ached to go there. I am not sure what is causing this desire. It is unbelievably strong, it feels like homesickness, except I am not from there so I can't be homesick. I wonder if this is how my dad felt and why he was so excited when my brother decided to get married in England. Dad had all these British History books...I wonder if it is woven into our DNA?

Whenever I watch a television show set in England (and I watch a lot) I am absolutely mesmerized...the architecture, the landscape, the sounds, it just captures me. I never pictured growing up to be an Anglophile, it just happened.

Slip, Slide, and learn to Power Skate



M is the one in gold


My Heroes

I am so thankful for these people who are out in all sorts of cold/hot/rain/freezing weather and their extremely long days. We have been told to expect more power outages and to conserve power in the upcoming months. I see this and wonder how we have power already.

This and That

I did a little volunteering at a Red Cross Shelter after the tornadoes Of April 27 and the people I served dinner to touched my heart. I took a drive today to look around at areas hit when the EF5 traveled NW. I saw what it did west of me (We had a small tornado skip over us and another one to the south of our neighborhood, nothing like what these people experienced, we were unscathed).

One gentleman (and he really was a gentle man) told me about making coffee using a clean sock, using scraps of thrown wood, etc. (He was so sweet. He said he didn't eat anything that once had eyes...but then he saw the brownies...he asked if they had eggs and looked so wistful when we said yes. He "pondered" as we say here in the South and changed his mind. I still feel guilty for showing him the brownies...I feel like I tempted him but I think he decided after all he'd been through, chocolate was the anecdote)

The second night I volunteered, a power crew from GA came roaring in about 6:40 (we stopped serving at 7 p.m.) and they said they broke land speed records to get there. This was about their 12th day of working and they were so sunburned. We found them band aids for their blisters and sunscreen and Tylenol for the burns. One guy told me he came with $20 in his pocket and everyone in this area was so grateful for their work, he still had most of his $20. One of the crew was so appreciative, he came in after eating and asked if he could help do anything. We declined and he offered to take out the trash. We declined that offer also...they had been working sun up to sun down and no days off...and he was going to take out the trash...unbelievable.

One family had their home damaged and the wife's parents home was damaged. The wife found two rentals and the family moved all of their belongings and her parents 3 days. She came in and asked if she could help in the kitchen. We said no, she walked over and started washing dishes. Unbelievable.

One day last week, I drove by a high school that was just missed and there was a hand painted sign in front of the school..."Prom dresses for tornado victims, FREE."
In all the chaos, I forgot it was prom season...all those kids looking forward to it all year and people stepped up to make it happen.

Last week when I was driving by an area that was wiped out, I saw a utility worker up in the cherry picker, restoring the damage. I tried taking a picture while driving with my cell phone (relax Mom, I was going slow) but I just couldn't capture the story. I tried again today but I still can't capture the feeling. These workers are so amazing.

Everywhere I go whether it is to wash the car or go to the bank there are emergency response vehicles, insurance disaster vehicles, Red Cross disaster vehicles. It's weird, it's so nice to see them but it breaks your heart.

Okay, I am yelling at my rowdy kids and totally lost my train of thought...I guess I'll just attach pictures I took today.(Oh, and before I forget...M and H helped me at the last night of dinner and all M wanted to do was mop, he was determined to mop and couldn't understand why you couldn't mop until everyone left...)

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Easter Egg Hunt

See what you're missing??? Pour yourself a glass of wine and enjoy.

Electronically Challenged

I took some video of the nasty storms that rolled through on April 27...but here is the problem, I used my iPhone. First, the quality is poor so you can't see the cloud formations, which were spooky. Second, I accidentally deleted the really good video with lots of sound from the winds and if there is a way to retrieve from the trash, I don't know how. Third, if I had known what was going on behind me to the west, I would have been scared in a way I can't even imagine.

So, what you have here is a nice little video of rain...very deceptive.

Learn to Throw

This restaurant is right by our house and Monday is Kids' Night...they eat free and learn a few tricks...since this place is within walking distance from our house, I'm thinking it may be H and M's first place of work :-)

Friday, May 6, 2011

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Can I Outsmart a Computer???

Just trying to post the pictures (couldn't attach it to the previous post :-/ )

When The Lights Go Out....

Color! Eight years ago while living in MA, our power went out for a couple days and we kept Hannah happy by coloring. A lot. (It just happened that day a box came from Land's End with the inside one big Christmas picture for coloring)

This last week when our power went out, Hannah discovered my favorite crayons and coloring book, the she found some markers and went to town...I uploaded my cell phone...and this is what a found.

Color on!

PS this is just a small sampling of what was on my fun courtesy of the Little Blonde. :-)

Huh, the pictures won't post...odd...

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Good Shepherd United Methodist Church

This is the Church I volunteered at for Sunday Night's Dinner.

If you want to help the Madison/Limestone County Tornado Relief, you can donate to Good Shepherd United Methodist Church (Mark Tornado Disaster) at 1418 Old Railroad Bed Road, Madison, AL 35757-6613 or send a check made out to the American Red Cross at the same address and specification.

CAPSHAW, Alabama -- Rev. David Tubbs has a church filling up with contributed food and clothing and a steady line of diners being served three meals a day. He has a brigade of eager volunteers from his church, Good Shepherd United Methodist, which has been designated by the Red Cross as the emergency shelter for tornado evacuees.

He also has "an amazing story how God provides," he says on this hectic afternoon.

"Last Wednesday morning, a truck showed up here and dropped off food for 150 people for four days. Paper products, all kinds of supplies. We were supposed to have a Kairos (prison ministry) out of Limestone prison," Tubbs says. "The team comes here (as its headquarters) and they go out to the prison, and they're feeding the inmates."

Before the Kairos team could arrive, the tornado did. The prison ministry program was postponed.

"When the Red Cross called me Wednesday and asked us to serve as a shelter, they said, 'David, how are you going to feed all those people?' I said, that's the least of my problems.

"We had all the food, all the paper products," Tubbs says. "It's like we were stocked and ready to go."

On Wednesday, between 500 and 700 people sought temporary refuge -- "Standing-room only," Tubbs calls it -- at Good Shepherd, which rests only a few miles from some of the most devastated areas in Harvest.

Though only 50 people have chosen to spend the night at the shelter since the tornadoes struck, more than 1,100 meals had been served through Monday breakfast.

"We're feeding anyone who needs it," Tubbs says. "We're feeding volunteers, we've fed tree-trimming people, we're feeding power company people, we're feeding the homeless and displaced. We're feeding people that don't have power. It's a really mixed bag."

Tubbs sings the same chorus as others coordinating volunteer efforts throughout the area.

"This community has been absolutely unbelievable responding to things," Tubbs says. "I think the community always rallies around the needy, but even I've been overwhelmed by the way they've rallied."

Tubbs shares another simple story.

One day last week, there had only seven packs of diapers at 10 a.m. He put out a call for help and "I bet we had 700 packs of diapers by 4 o'clock," he says.

The Good Shepherd gymnasium is the collection point for supplies and food. Piles of clothing line the far wall. Tables are covered with food, from a pyramid of SlimFast cans to a nursery's worth of baby food to canned soups. There are toiletries and drinks and snacks.

Eight folding tables are set up for dining. A CandyLand board game rests on one.

Chaquita Butler is in the gym, a pizza box under her arm. The tornado stripped half the roof off her house in Lakeview, where she lives with eight children and one grandchild. She's not nearly as concerned about her own well-being as she is others. She still frets over her family in Tuscaloosa; as of noon Monday, two of her aunts were still unaccounted for.

Because Butler has a car and some neighbors don't, she's transporting them to the shelter to gather supplies. Or she's simply driving over and delivering things back to them.

Happily, it seems for every bag being hauled outside, another generous soul arrives with something to provide.

In one corner of the gym, as you enter from a dark hallway lined with cases of bottled water, there is a hand-drawn sign on poster board:

"No Food or Drinks in the Gym"

That rule has been ignored.

Right now, the more food and drinks, the better.

May 3, 2011

I know I should be excited about Osama Bin Laden's capture but I think I am overwhelmed by the fact that it is raining (pouring rain) outside and I can only think of the damaged homes and businesses that don't need rain right now.

When September 11th happened, I was pregnant with Hannah and Greg was in Virginia. It was just Lauren and me and it was horrible. We lived on Base and the Base was closed. Our base was considered a high target. I was watching when the second plane hit and I was watching when the Towers fell. How someone could come up with such an idea and how someone could carry it through is beyond my comprehension. However, I have a feeling someone is standing in line, just as evil to take the place of the now deceased and soon to be martyred Osama Bin Laden.

Right now, my mind is limited to what is going on around me...I am including pictures taken from Limestone County (where I live). Maybe next week, I can celebrate the execution of Bin Laden...probably not...someone will just step in his shoes and pick up where he left off...

Monday, May 2, 2011

May 2, 2011

I went to church since there is so much to worship God for and so much to ask for others. I was doing okay until our pastor sang it is well with my soul...started crying like a baby...fortunately, I did not sob. Pulled myself together and lost it again when we lit candles for people who needed prayer. I lit mine for the person that God knew needed prayer the most...lost it again. I think people thought I needed help since a sister in Christ came over to pray over me. Oy. I can only think it was the Holy Spirit in my crying for what has happened to earth after the fall of man.

However, while volunteering at the Red Cross Shelter last night, God's hand was mighty. They were running low on meat and a restaurant showed up and donated everything from their freezer since they couldn't keep it cold...they needed ice and someone showed up with a huge ice donation...they needed foil and a few hours later a huge donation of foil was made...and so it went.

April 28 Tornadoes

Today, I am coming off the adrenaline that has been running through my body since last Wednesday...the power is back and I can do laundry. However, that isn't the case for many people in my area. I took this picture with my camera. This is Hwy 72 and we live a mile south of Hwy 72 and this picture is about 2 miles to the west of our house. I'll write more later but suffice it to say, my family is okay but many are not.