Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

Your gift from me is this:

my niece, Cora, the cutest baby EVER!


Be careful sending your kids out trick-or-treating if you live in North Dakota . . . there's a strange lady giving out these notes to kids she deems obese:

fat letter halloween

Click here for the whole story


I also have one thing to say to my Mom today:

I love you, Mom!

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Birthday Weekend


Saturday was my birthday!
I got this picture from my sweet and ADORABLE niece, Cora
(and her parents)!




On Friday, Greg took the day off and we went to the Arizona State Fair, mostly to see the
Star Trek exhibit.  There were costumes and the bridge set-up from the original series (with Captain Kirk) and even a shuttlecraft as it would be real-sized.  Lots of weapons from different species, and a really cool timeline of events in the Star Trek reality.


Don't worry; I wore sensible shoes, but they were still cute!



We also saw some neat exhibits, like these collected fossils:


And beautiful minerals!


 And these interesting fruits and vegetables:


Peanuts!
I never saw how peanuts grow before!


We got to see a little bit of the cow judging!


It was just like a dog show - the cows all stood in a row (the one to the far left in the line was mooing up a storm - s/he was really loud!)  The judge lady in the khaki jacket would give a direction and the cow's owner would take the cow on a little walk in a circle and back to its place.  


There was a petting zoo that had wallabies!
They are small versions of kangaroos and they are extra super cute.
They have little black noses.  
I felt sad for the animals in the petting zoo, though; they were MOBBED by noisy little kids.


Of course, there was lots of weird food on sticks:


And deep-fried food that really doesn't seem to be appropriate for frying:



Greg took Monday off from work, too, and we planned to hike the Peralta Trail, but on the way there, 
we saw this:
"check engine" - oh no!


Turns out that his gas tank cap was cracked and needed to be replaced.  
Or something like that. 
Now it is done and we are slightly poorer. 


 On our way out the door to our hike-that-wasn't, we saw this baby gecko on the sidewalk.
You'd never guess how small he really was unless you saw him next to . . .


. . . my shoe!

Don't tell the youngsters, but the only reason I was able to get this close to him is because he was no longer in the land of the living.  It's possible he got too cold. . . it is getting into the 50s for lows now (expecting highs only in the low 70s today - hooray!), and that may be too cold for a cold-blooded baby gecko.


In case any of you struggle trying to figure out how to plan for meals and have the ingredients you need and not be freaking out an hour before dinner time because you don't know what to make, take a look at this neat gift my friend Cindy gave me!  She said she felt sad that I have to think so hard just to eat, and she wanted to ease the process (thanks, sweet Cindy!)


Now you know what we'll be eating this week!

It's nice to just look at the planner around 4:30 and start cooking.  I don't know why I haven't done this before, but I haven't.  I have a list of about 12 recipes that work for me right now with the Crohn's business, and I am just rotating through them, so we eat each of them about every 2 weeks (some make enough for two nights, so the 12 recipes can easily stretch to more than 12 days).

I had a little flare-up for some reason (spicy spaghetti sauce, maybe?) over the weekend, but I am back to feeling perky and energetic and happy again already.  I didn't even have to change any plans due to fatigue or discomfort!  Amazing.  I am very thankful to be improving and to have hope.  Thanks for your prayers and encouragement!

Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Almost-Birthday!


I love this time of year!
At only 12 minutes after 6 PM, it was already twilight, and my outside fairy lights came on!
(I have them set to come on when it gets dark.)  I love fall!

This week is TONS of fun because my birthday is on Saturday (I'm turning 39!), and lots of celebrating has been happening.

Yesterday Greg's Mom came to visit.  We had a delicious meal last night (spaghetti, salad for Greg & his Mom, and homemade gluten-free breadsticks - yum!)  Last night and this morning Linda & I did a bunch of shopping and errands.  After shopping, we went to Barro's for pizza.  


We saw some interesting stuff while at TJ Maxx . . . 

This was an empty box Greg pointed out.
I imagine it would store things like mortgage documents, marriage certificates,
insurance papers, and things like that.


And then there was this artwork. 
Greg was observing it from the back.
The three circles slowly moved independently when started and continued moving for quite a while.
It was very soothing to watch, and a really neat idea!

Does anyone have welding equipment to make one of these?!


Greg took Friday and Monday off so we can enjoy time together.  That sure makes me feel special!
Tomorrow we are going to the Arizona State Fair, where we will be seeing this exhibit:


I LOVE LOVE LOVE Star Trek, and Greg found this exhibit and planned it independently, which makes it even more meaningful.  


The babies have been super cute, as always!

Stephen & Bjarne like to snuggle when it's a little chilly.


This is where Allistair spends a lot of time. . . on top of the cat stand
(it's over 6 feet tall!) in the bedroom.


 But sometimes he NEEDS to snuggle!  And a Daddy on the couch is perfect!


And sometimes he needs to get in a paper bag and fight his way out!


Stephen likes to scratch on the scratching post like this . . .
YouTube link 
video

Silly kitten!!!


Here's something that's making me happy today - new sandals!


Quick Health Update:
I am slowly continuing to get better.
I have had THREE extremely full days in a row, and I am not exhausted yet.
I have been sleeping very well, but I am not flashing "empty - empty - empty".
Six months ago, I wouldn't have been able to handle even *one* day as full as the last three have been!
So thank You, Jesus, for bringing me this far!
I have been able to juice again, but I have to still leave out all vegetables but carrots.
My juice the last two days has been 1 green apple, 2 large carrots, and 1 kiwi.  Yum!


Have a wonderful weekend!
Happy birthday to me (almost)!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Struvvelpeter

This video is funny for a couple of different reasons.

#1: Bjarne does this annoyed thing with his tail that looks like his tail has turned into an amazing cat helicopter propeller!

#2: I am in the background (not knowing that Greg was recording), talking like a big nerd about how he refuses to eat like Kaspar in Struvvelpeter and I'm quoting this German poem.  It's a bilingual video!


video


Struvvelpeter is a hilarious book written in German in the 1800s (I think) that was meant to frighten children into doing the right thing.

Here is an English translation - but I can't vouch for it being as funny.

Kaspar is a character who refuses to eat:

"Ich esse meine Suppe, NEIN!
Ich esse keine Suppe mehr."

[I won't eat my soup - NO!
I am not going to eat any more soup.]

 and eventually DIES.  They put his little soup bowl on his grave.



image from this website


I think my favorite story from this book, though, is the one about the thumb-sucker.
So as not to completely spoil the surprise for you, there is a Scissors-Man who deals with the thumb-sucker in a rather shocking way . . . 


If you need a good laugh, this book is highly recommended!

Hieroglyphic Trail



Yesterday I went for a hike with Juildeen!
We hiked the Hieroglyphic Trail in the Superstition Mountains. 
In fact, in spite of the national government shut-down, we hiked in a national forest!







The view was beautiful!
We told God what a great job He did making the mountains!



We saw a type of lizard I have never seen before!
He was a beautiful color of green.
I imagine he's pretty rare to see because he probably hibernates in the winter (when I usually hike).
Yesterday the high was 93, so it was a little hot for the hike we did.  
But it was Juildeen's Fall Break, so she was available!




At the top of the trail, there are very old native American drawings on the rocks.
The drawings are mostly animals and people.


Here is a close-up of a deer (or something similar):


Here are some people (Juildeen thought they were talking to God!)



We ate our picnic lunch at the top 



Some chipmunks wanted to share!  
Juildeen was very excited about the chipmunk taking the piece of bread she gave him.





After lunch, we walked around a little bit at the top and then went back down.  
Juildeen was a brave explorer! 




We saw a saguaro skeleton, which Juildeen decided had gotten hit by lightning.



 On the way down - still in a good mood in spite of heat and a long walk.
Hooray for Juildeen!



 I'm always proud when Juildeen looks right at the camera - she's so cute!



In other news, I have been working hard on cranking out the next lesson and
printing up backstock so I always have at least one copy of each lesson ready to ship.

Assembly line!



And the weather must be cooling off because Allistair decided to 
climb IN my pajamas with me the other night!


 Stephen, being as silly as ever:


Allistiar, completely wiped out by a whole day of being himself:


 Bjarne hogging the remote:


Claude guarding my shoes for me!
Thanks, Claudie!



And a picture of the shadows on the wall at church on Sunday. 
There are beams holding everything up, and the patterns they make are really pretty!



Health Update: The past two days I have eaten a small raw apple and haven't had a whole lot of negative reaction, so yesterday I decided to make a small Greek salad (cucumber, tomato, black olives, feta, & balsamic vinegar).  I LOVE this combination and have been desperately craving it.  I ate a little bit and the burping started almost immediately. Then the rest of the digestive distress.  So I guess I'm not quite ready for veggies yet.  Oh well, I'll try again in a month or two!

Enjoy your Wednesday!