Sunday, October 25, 2009

Warning: Slow Moving Porcupines May End Up In Your Tires

Last Tuesday night I was driving to Jen's house in Goldendale and came across a slow moving porcupine in the middle of the road. I saw it at the last minute and, of course, ran over it! The big guy might have already been dead or just trying to make it to the other side of the road & I interrupted his travels.

I screamed, not only because of the loud noise and thumps the collision caused, but I am one of those people who will stop for a chipmunk while they decide which way they'd like to go on the street and which tree is the best. Seeing flat animals makes me sad for the animal's family that's left behind at home. So, hitting a porcupine was one of those sad moments for me.

It was dark when I arrived at Jen's and no way to really check the car out to see if there was any damage. The next morning, Jen and I looked out and there were all these quills sticking out of my two right tires! Of course, we're both wondering if the quills will make the tires go flat. Pulling a few of them out I found out how sharp they are. The quills have barbs on them and were quite stuck into the rubber! I ended up pulling most of them out, but left a few of the "evidence" in place to show David when I got home.

On leaving Goldendale, I looked for signs of the porcupine and there was nothing on the road where the incident had occured. I wonder if the big guy walked off, saying "ha, can't hurt me...take that!" or if another animal had come along and scooped him off the road as a late evening snack.

I have the pulled out quills in a safe place (a baby food jar) to share with kids. I wish I had the full quills so I could use it when I read the book "Prickles"....a sweet book about a porcupine that doesn't have any friends because he's grumpy! But I wasn't about to stop and ask the prickly guy if I could have some of his quills for a teaching project. Life in the fast lane....not so fast when you're a porcupine!

Friday, October 23, 2009

Gratitude Friday

Good morning! Coffee is on....grab a cup and join me in Gratitude Friday! What are you thankful for this week?

1. coffee! David roasted coffee beans last night and the coffee smells A-M-A-Z-I-N-G this morning.

2. kindergarten hugs! I taught Kindergarten yesterday and the kids swarmed all over me to give hugs when they arrived. Cherished moments. Talk about feeling loved!

3. the ability to still learn! I took a big midterm last night and even though I stressed over it (and don't think I did well!), imagine what would happen if I no longer could be a life time learner?

4. travel time! I spent the last week with my mom in Hansville, I served Lutefisk in Poulsbo, a quick overnight with my aunt & uncle in Auburn, a few nights in San Francisco with Ian and another quick overnight with Jen in Goldendale. That's a lot of miles. I LOVE traveling, though!!! (and all of the Starbucks that are waiting for me to visit!)

5. friends that continue to give me encouragement. Life hasn't been very fun lately. I can't explain everything that's going on, but it's been a sad journey since camp got over.

Thinking on Psalm 61 this morning: "O God, listen to my cry! Hear my prayer! From the ends of the earth I cry to you for help when my heart is overwhelmed. Lead me to the towering rock of safety, for you are my safe refuge, a fortress where my enemies cannot reach me. Let me live forever in your sanctuary, safe beneath the shelter of your wings." (vs 1-4)

Hope you have a wonderful Friday. I'm off to teach those sweet kindergartners again!!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Recipe of the week: Oven-Baked Pineapple Pork Chops - Gooseberry Patch

From Gooseberry Patch, I'm making this recipe tonight for dinner!

Oven-Baked Pineapple Pork Chops

8-oz. can pineapple slices, drained and 4 T. juice reserved
2 T. soy sauce
1/2 t. ground ginger
1/2 t. garlic powder
4 pork loin chops
1/3 c. Italian-seasoned bread crumbs
1 t. paprika

Combine reserved pineapple juice, soy sauce, ginger and garlic powder in a shallow bowl; add pork chops, turning once to coat. Marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours. Gently toss bread crumbs and paprika in a pie plate; add pork chops, coating both sides. Arrange pork chops in an ungreased shallow 13"x9" baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. Turn pork chops; place one pineapple slice on each pork chop. Bake 25 additional minutes. Makes 4 servings.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

October's 10 on 10

I did it, I took pictures on the 10th of the month!! Lots of pictures of camp, plus a few of the beautiful Lake Spokane on a gorgeous fall day. Enjoy~

Friday, October 9, 2009

Gratitude Friday

Woohoo, living on the edge today and changing the picture to the left! :)

I have been relaxing (aka LAZY) all day and just know getting to Gratitude Friday, plus sharing a cup of coffee with the Company Girls. No school today so no job = no stress! Kinda nice.

Grab a cup of coffee or hot chocolate (it is rather chilly at my house) and share your Friday Gratitude list with me.

My list:

1. medical insurance coverage. I know I've shared this before but I had to go to the dentist and doctor this week because of TMJ pain. I'm being sent to a TMJ specialist and right now the case is being reviewed. I'm in a lot of pain with not being able to eat much or sleep a lot. Thankfully the dental visit was seen as an emergency, which our dental insurance will cover, and the TMJ visit will be covered, too, because it's seen as medical treatment. I also appreciate the free muscle relaxer samples I can take at night, too. It has made a difference. (Now if I can get the dogs out of my bed at night, I'd be ecstatic!)

2. coffee with friends. It was a very early morning Starbucks date with Polly. I so appreciate her! I swamped her brain with questions and she gave me back some answers to think about. Love those friends who give constructive criticism with grace!

3. date night. David and I are going out tonight to see "Up!" Looks like a hilarious movie, we get to have popcorn for dinner because it's a very early showing, and just spend time together out of the house. (GREAT MOVIE! Loved the story of Carl and Ellie. My favorite quote is "Russell: Sometimes, it's the boring stuff I remember the most." Remember to enjoy the boring stuff, too. It's what memories are made of. GO SEE IT or buy it!)

4. extra work. I'm headed out to camp tomorrow to help work in the kitchen -- serving, dishes and cleaning. I LOVE IT! It's how I paid for my car insurance in high school and college, working at Island Lake Camp's kitchen. I was jumping for joy when Jenny asked if anyone could help her out this week. Imagine getting paid, too! It will be a beautiful fall day out at the camp. Taking my camera.

5. The ease of the Internet. In less than a half hour, I booked a flight to San Francisco and found a hotel to stay at. I'm going in 9 days to see Ian, flying out of Seattle (amazing low fare!) I loved being able to book everything myself and saving lots of $.

Ok, I'm off to see the movie. Could someone feed the Beagle Boys at 5 PM and play with the kitties til we return? THANKS!! Help yourself to whatever treats you can find above the stove... I'm sure there's chocolate up there!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Just this thought....

Internal fighting.....between my heart and my head.

I was reading a blog this morning and Carol's story hit me like a brick. Not the actual story (besides tugging major at my heart because of her sweet baby Grace) but the end of the story. She asked some pretty pointed questions that got me thinking. As I read on another friend's blog, "my heart and head are in an arguement, continually!"

She asked : Do you feel all alone? Have you felt like shaking everyone around you and shouting, “Fix it”?

This is the verse Carol shared: "You know with all your heart and soul that not one of all the good promises the LORD your God gave you has failed. Every promise has been fulfilled; not one has failed." Joshua 23:14 NIV

I'm struggling in this area, trusting that He's in control. Esp with teaching jobs and in the friendship department these days.

How do YOU know with all your heart and soul that His promises to you have been fulfilled?

To read the rest of Carol's story, go to Internet Cafe Devotions.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Random Dozen

Linda is hosting her weekly random dozen and she had a bit of a Hall and Oates theme going in her original post. Come play along...just answer these questions on your own blog and link back here to share your answers.

1. On an average, how often do you splurge and buy something for yourself? When I am being frugal, I don't splurge often. However, I am the queen of Starbucks and I will splurge at least once a week on a venti vanilla non fat latte, esp if it's payday Friday.
2. What is the last creative project you began/finished? Creative project would be cleaning my house for two and a half weeks while waiting for a teaching job! Time to start on it again since I have today off. Other projects include rubberstamping cards. I'll work on one today and post the picture.
3. OK, Goldie Locks, do you consider your house too big, too little or juuuust right? Hmm, contentment would be the question here. It's a small house but just right for the two of us. But it's not what I really want.
4. What is your favorite outdoor chore? Pooper scooping is NOT my favorite chore, but sitting on the back steps with the Beagle Boys after the job is done and enjoying the sunshine & the Boys...that's a great reward for doing that nasty chore.
5. If you knew that cigarette smoking was not bad for your health but would be a weight loss tool, would you use it? No Why or why not? Just like marijuana is supposed to help with MS, not using it even if I might feel better. Nasty, nasty, nasty!
6. On a road trip, would you rather drive or ride? If the road trip is with girlfriends, I like to drive. If it's with my hubby, I like to ride. Then I can read and sleep.
7. What do you consider a trivial pursuit? Trying to figure out life! My head and heart are always in an arguement.
8. So ... how long do you watch a movie or read a book before giving up on it? A book will get a couple of chapters. A movie will get turned off if it's at home. If we're at the theatre, we'll watch the whole thing even though we're thinking "let's leave!" Did you know that if you leave in the beginning of the movie because it's not to your liking, you can ask for your money back or get another movie ticket? You can't wait til the end of the movie, though! We've done it a few times with AMC movies.
9. Is there a song that you really love but are embarrassed to admit because it's not cool or it's racy or because it's by Hall and Oates? I can't think of one right off the top of my head. (Ok, I thought...I loved Bob Dylan's song "Lay, Lady, Lay" and Chris De Burgh's song "Lady in Red". Perhaps kinda racy but back when I heard them, I was pretty naive! :)
10. On a scale of 1-10 (10 = extremely) how spontaneous are you? 7 but not a big risk taker, either. My favorite thing to do is to jump in the car and go for a drive, not really knowing where I'm going. It's always full of surprises and usually enlightening, both in sights and my own thoughts.
11. Are you a food and/or beverage snob? yep. Starbucks is always my drink of choice for coffee!! (even though hubby roasts amazing coffee, a Starbucks latte is the best!) I can't forget that I'm totally in love with German Reisling wines, either. Don't give me a glass of red, it's got to be sweet white!
12. Who/What are you trying to control in your life? I am realizing that I try control friends (or keep them at arms' length) which doesn't make for good friendships. How do I stop this cycle?! I could use some constructive criticism in this department.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Happy World Card Making Day!

I'll be making some cards inbetween studying for my English grammar class and doing some other errands today!! Have fun creating and brightening up someone's day with a homemade card. (If you would like a card, drop me an email with your snail mail address!)

I'll try to take some pictures of what I create. I know I need to make some birthday cards so this is a great day to get them completed. For more information about World Card Making Day, hop over to, which is presented by Paper Crafts.

Friday, October 2, 2009

Gratitude Friday

Good morning! Freshly roasted coffee being served today in my Starbucks yourself!

Gratitude Friday includes:

1. days off! I took yesterday off to recharge. I had a test last night in my English class and I wanted to study a little bit. Well, I studied, took a nap, had tea with a friend, got a flu shot, bought new glasses (I had to get progressive lenses!), cleaned the house and spent some time outside with the Beagle Boys. As much as I love teaching, it was nice to have to only make a decision for me or answer my own questions.

2. medical insurance! I got the flu shot yesterday and although I know they don't cost very much, my medical insurance pays for it all. Because we have our military medical benefits, I haven't had to worry about having other medical insurance while I'm not employed as a full time teacher. I know how blessed we are!

3. the crisp fall days! I love the changing of the colors of the leaves and knowing WHY they change. I'm headed up to Greenbluff this afternoon to get apples to make apple crisp and freeze some apple pie fillings.

4. drop in friends! I had two friends drop in for a visit this week. No call, just dropped in. I LOVE IT!! I miss having people at my house and they don't care that there's disarray all over the house. They came to see me!

5. warm sweaters and sweats! The temperatures have dropped and I'm not wanting to turn on the heat yet. So warm sweats to the rescue for cruising around the house in the early mornings and late evenings. I know, they're not the most beautiful and def don't win points with the fashion police, but they're warm and comfy. The warm sweaters.....cold, windy recess duty on Tuesday forced me to find a warm sweater for Wednesday, along with my coat! I'm thinking it's time to get acclimated or it's going to be a long winter.

What's on your list today? I hope you have a wonderful weekend. My friend Wendy is on her way to FL to see her husband, Lisa is on her way with her husband to Tahiti and I'm going to be wishing I could go somewhere instead of doing the gazillion items I've got to get done here. Have a great time, ladies! I'll just remember that I'm headed to Poulsbo in a few weeks to help with the Lutefisk dinner and San Francisco is going to be on the horizon soon, too!