Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Old 100th

This is the 100th edition of the Wednesday Hodgepodge, graciously hosted by our friend (see #7 below) Joyce every week. Congratulations Joyce! It made me remember the organist at our church when I was a child teaching us the Doxology, which she called 'Old 100th' referring to the tune to which it is sung.  
"Praise God from whom all blessings flow..."  
Although I have not participated in all 100 weeks of WHP, I praise God for the hundreds upon hundreds of blessings in my life, and count the Hodgepodge as one of them.

I am praying for all those affected by the storm called Sandy as so many folks will be facing a long road of recovery and rebuilding. The images I see on the television look like something out of a horror movie (see #3 below), but I know they are real, and that the reality is even more devastating than the photos.

In the midst of a storm, I read these words, shared by Ann Voskamp, from Jonathan Edwards:
Your griefs will turn out for your ultimate good.
Your great things can never be grabbed away from you.
The Greatest is still to come.

And now, to the questions:

1. What creeps you out?
I have to say needles. Just. Don't. Like them. I especially hate blood tests when they put that little rubber band thingy on your arm and tell you to make a fist. I close my hand, but never, ever squeeze. I know. I'm a big baby.

2. What's your least favorite candy?
I have a hard time thinking of least favorite and candy in the same sentence. I am a candy lover. I haven't met many candies that I don't like. If pushed to choose a least favorite, I will say Mounds. Not a huge coconut fan. Unless it is a pina colada.
Vindale conducts  research on Facebook , and produced this word cloud based on the least favorite candy of Facebook users. The bigger the name of the candy, the more disliked it is. Do you see your least favorite?

3. Are you a fan of scary movies?  What's the scariest movie you've ever seen?
I am not a fan of scary movies. I'm not even a fan of detective shows, or any show in which a dead body appears in the first three minutes. When I hear that ominous music, I hit the remote in search of a Raymond rerun.
When our children were young teens, and past the trick or treating stage, I suggested a movie night with popcorn and scary movies. I think we rented Poltergeist every year because it's the only one I could find in the 'horror' section with a PG rating.
I do remember one year when we had a family outing to the movie theater to see 'The Ring.'
Of course, I think the kids were ages 12-20 by then, so I was the only one scared. What was I thinking?

4. What part of life confuses you the most?
Well, there's math, and the satellite remote, and trying to understand why on earth those people would want to go on Dr. Phil and tell the whole world about their problems. Why??

5. Pumpkin, sunflower, sesame, poppy...what's your favorite seed?
"And now, my beauties, something with poison in it, I think. With poison in it, but attractive to the eye, and soothing to the smell."

"Poppies... Poppies. Poppies will put them to sleep. Sleeeeep. Now they'll sleeeeep!"
 I don't know if poppy is my favorite seed, but that's my favorite movie quote about poppies.

6. Imagine your life ten years from today...what's changed?
Well, I'll be old. Really old. :) Hopefully, (still) enjoying my children and grandchildren, using senior citizen discounts, going on trips, sitting by the lake, and reminiscing about the good old days.

7.  What do you a) love the most and b) like the least about the Hodgepodge?
I love most, the interaction with other bloggers. I find myself referring to other bloggers as 'my friend ____' whom I have never even met in real life, yet still feels like a friend. It's a small world, after all.
I like least, that I don't always have enough time to visit all my friends and share comments.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Since today is Halloween, another photo from the archives.
 Adam 3, Jennifer (almost 8),
Jonathan 6, Andrew 9, David (almost 11).

And a poem/finger play, taught to hundreds of students (including me) 
who attended my mom's preschool:

Five little pumpkins, sitting on a gate.
The first one said, "My it's getting late."
The second one said, "There are witches in the air."
The third one said, "I don't care."
The fourth one said, "Let's run and run and run."
The fifth one said, "Get ready for some fun!"
Then whooooo went the wind, and out went the lights,
And the five little pumpkins ran out of sight!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Hey Adam, It's Your Birthday!

Twenty-two years ago today, we added a sweet baby boy to our menagerie. If I remember correctly, I dressed the four older kids and sent them to a Halloween party while we went to the hospital to have a baby.
Adam Carter completed our family, and even at 22, he'll always be my baby.
Yes, he liked Thomas the Tank Engine, and carried his trains in a bag to keep him occupied while attending the older kids' activities. Nana made him this awesome cake to celebrate being three. Looks like Caroline and Jennifer were wearing spots that night.
I think my boys all keep their hair so short now just to pay me back for so many years of this hair.
Just one in his series of broken arms. I believe this was his first, just before vacation, of course.
Ready for prom.

A ten year 4-Her.
And last spring outside the famous room 202 at the fraternity house.
It's hard to believe it's his senior year of college, and I think even Adam wonders how it happened so fast. Ready or not - you're a grown-up! Even so, you'll always be my baby.
Happy Birthday Adam! I love you!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Hops to the Hodgepodge

Joyce, who hosts the Wednesday Hodgepodge, noted that today is Hodgepodge #99. That's a lot of Hodgepodge! She also noted that the number 99 reminds her of the old song '99 Bottles of Beer on the Wall.' Everyone's favorite for those long junior high bus rides. Ha! I'll bet there are more than a few of us who annoyed an adult or two ten by singing that song. I wonder if current youngsters know it? Enough of the bus ride down memory lane, and on to the questions...

1.  So, do you like beer?
The short answer is 'no.' I have never learned to like beer. Recently, we have been frequenting a brewery in Nashville, and I have attempted to join the fun. The last time we were there, I was on my third beer. Ever. I am ok sipping from the small sample glasses, but I don't know if I will ever acquire a taste for it.

2.  What's your least favorite repetitive task?
Loading and emptying the dishwasher. Definitely a first world problem.
Let's see how this goes, "Oh how I dislike putting dishes into an electronic machine that fills with heated water automatically, then washes and dries all the dishes at once while I sleep, or shop, or get my nails done. And then, later, I have to take all the clean dishes out of the machine and put them away in my cabinets." Yep. First world problem.

3.  When was the last time you rode a bus?  Where was it headed?
When we were in New Orleans last month, the streetcars were being repaired, so we had to take a bus to the Garden District. Definitely not as cute as a streetcar.
The bus did, however, get us where we wanted to go, and we enjoyed a delicious lunch.
Complete with this for dessert. Bread Pudding Souffle. Yes, I may have mentioned it a time or two before.

4.  What song from your childhood or from your own children's childhood could make a parent's nerves stand on end?
I don't remember our children singing songs that made my nerves stand on end. I think I was singing right along with them. Remember Raffi? Or Friendship Company?

However, from my own childhood, I remember singing Donny Osmond's Puppy Love all the way to Florida. All. The. Way. I had a little cassette player/recorder about the size of a cigar box, and the batteries held up for a good long time. I imagine my parents were a bit on edge by the end of the trip.
Someone help me, help me, help me, please.

That's probably why we got out of the car at the Welcome Station. To give their ears a rest. :)

5.  The US Presidential election cycle is drawing to a close (can I get an AMEN??), and the third and final debate was held last night...what was the last thing you 'debated about'?
I try not to debate too much. I do think we learn more by listening.
I remember a family debate between my two brothers over who was the greatest athlete, Tiger Woods or Lance Armstrong. How's that one working out?

6.  Can a person make too much money?  How much is too much?
How much is too much? It seems after the first several million, how much more does one really need? Not that I would know, of course. It does make me think of the verse from Luke 12:48b:  From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked.

7.  Pop-soda-coke-something else...what's it called where you live?
I hear several different words used in our part of the country. Pop is used frequently, and I often say soft drinks. Speaking of which, have you all seen the Coca-Cola Freestyle Machine? One of the restaurants in our little town has one, and it is pretty slick indeed. With a tap of the touch screen, you can serve yourself  a custom drink from 127 different choices. Just don't get behind the little kid who wants to try all 127 in the same cup!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
With Halloween approaching, I thought I would share one of my favorite vintage photos. That's Cowardly Lion (Jonathan 1 1/2), Tin Man (Andrew 4),  Scarecrow (David almost 6), and Dorothy (Jennifer almost 3).
Jonathan recently asked me if, when he was born, I immediately started formulating my plan for these costumes. Well, yes. Yes I did.
They hope to reprise these costumes (with a few additions to the cast) in a few weeks for Breakfast Club at Purdue. Breakfast Club, as you may know, is a Purdue football game-day tradition that includes the wearing of costumes and the drinking of orange juice (among other things). It does not include pancakes. You will not be surprised to know that I do still have the parts to these costumes, carefully preserved, and some may even be utilized in the encore performance. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Word to the Hodgepodge

It's time for the Wednesday Hodgepodge! The fun is hosted by Joyce, so after enjoying my answers, be sure to click on the button to pay her a visit. You can join the fun by answering the questions yourself, then linking up to share the love.

1. Noah Webster was born this week back in 1758....besides the online version, do you own a dictionary?  Do you ever use the hardback copy or is your hunt for a definition strictly online these days?
I'm sure we have a dictionary around here somewhere, but I will admit, I use the online version. I remember receiving a dictionary like the one below as a graduation gift. It was a popular gift back in 1978. I wonder if today's graduates would know what to do with it? I do remember my brother using mine to keep the lid on his hamster's cage, and the hamster chewing the back cover. Hamsters will do that. That's what's called 'eating your words.'

2.  Should public schools ban Halloween celebrations?  What about other holiday celebrations currently under fire?
Our kids (and I) always enjoyed Halloween celebrations at school. That being said, when I was teaching, I understood the disruption to the school day that these celebrations sometimes caused. Not all parents can put together an elaborate costume. Does a teacher really want 28 second graders 'all hopped up' on Halloween candy? Do classroom parties take up too much valuable instructional time? I hope teachers can implement holiday activities that allow all to participate, and promote learning at the same time.

3.  What's your favorite 'dog' movie?
The first one I thought of was Homeward Bound. Our kids loved that movie, and I did too. Such a good story, and a happy ending. I know folks will choose Old Yeller, but I always think of the sad part of that one. I much prefer happy dogs. :)

4.  When were you last somewhere you'd describe as 'too quiet'?
I don't know about the last time, but when I think of 'too quiet' I think of times when the children were little, and it suddenly got 'too quiet.' 
Then I would find something like this:
 Or this:
Those were the days. 
And you may notice that both photos are of Andrew. Hmmmm.....

5.  Are you a neat cook or a messy cook?  In other words do you clean as you go or make a big mess and then deal with it later?
I'm not a neat cook or a messy cook, which means I'm not a cook at all. I do it occasionally, and I'm not that messy when I cook. I'm plenty messy in other parts of the house. Just take a look in my laundry room. Or don't.

6.  Did you hear about Felix Baumgartner, the skydiver who broke the sound barrier via parachute?  Was your first thought  COOL! or was your first thought CRAZY!  Are you adventurous?
CRAZY! I can't imagine what would posess someone to want to do that. I was feeling a little sick in the stomach just watching. Not too adventurous here. My daughter jumped out of an airplane once, and I stayed home and prayed. She landed safely. God is good. I'll bet that's what Felix's mom is thinking too.

7.  What's not a word but should be?
I was having trouble coming up with an answer for this one, so I consulted my friend Google. I learned there is a word for this. An entire website, actually.

 Sniglet (snig'lit) - n. Any word that doesn't appear in the dictionary, but should.
 From the website:
 * A sniglet is a word that should be in the dictionary but isn't. Sniglets are the brainchild of comedian Rich Hall who, with a little help from his friends, wrote a series of books containing sniglets in the mid-eighties. While Rich Hall invented the word "sniglet" itself, sniglets are actually a long-running popular joke in which people make up their own humorous words to define things or concepts that have no "official" definitions. More information can be found at:

Some of my favorites from the website:

Gription (grip' shun) - n. The sound of sneakers squeaking against the floor during basketball games. I always wondered what that was called.
 Pediddel - n. A car with only one working headlight. Our kids always knew this one.
 Brakenoia  (Brak e noia) (v) The act or urge of stepping on the brake on the passenger side of the car. I've done it many times.
 Bumperglints (bump' ur glintz) - n. The small reflective obstacles in the middle of interstate highways which supposedly keep drivers awake and on track. I remember the sound of the car hitting these while driving through the night on vacation.

 8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Darci and Andrew took the kids to Zoo Boo last week, and came to the house looking for some easy costumes for the kids. Since I never rarely get rid of things, I have quite a collection of costumes in the archives.
On the left is Jennifer as a black cat, age (almost) 8, in 1993. On the right, Haleigh, age 2, wearing the same cat ears and collar, and Matthew, age 8, wearing a monkey costume, also from the closet.

Here are some photos of the cuteness that Darci shared. Looks like fun was had by all!
 Miss Ella was a ladybug, previously worn by her cousin and sister. A great way to share the love!

Monday, October 15, 2012

Damp Spirits

We went to Purdue for the Homecoming festivities on Saturday, but spirits (and bodies) were dampened before the end of the day.

I made the peanut butter football dip again, which seems to be well-received by the tailgaters.
We arrived early enough to do a little geocaching while the pancakes were cooking. Jim is the master of the pancakes, so that left me free to take the young ones on a little adventure. Our friends from Louisville were up for the game, so Matthew and their two girls were eager to start the hunt. Matthew manned the compass.
It seemed to be pointing in the direction of the Boilermaker statue. I was glad the description clearly stated that no climbing or scaling was necessary to find the cache. My little group would have been all about climbing and scaling. :)
Along the way, we passed this group getting all suited painted up for the game. The girls said, "Are those college kids?"
"Why are they doing that?"
Because they're college kids.
Sure enough, we ended up at the statue.
After circling it several times, going up and down the hill, looking over the concrete wall, and checking out the stairs...
we finally found it. It was a tricky one! Matthew, Makenna, and Abbi holding the clever little container.
We signed and dated the log, and put it back for the next geocacher to find.
Success! Now we're ready to have some breakfast!
Back at the tailgate, Adam enjoyed visiting with Megan and Shelbi.
Happy Makenna!
My dad and his friend Dick, who happens to be Shelbi's grandpa.
David and Shylah with one of his chemistry friends.
David and Shylah.
Shelly (Abbi and Makenna's mom), who, while visiting another tailgate, got a little too close to the fire and melted her shirt (which she had borrowed from Darci).
So glad we didn't have Shelly on fire!
Andrew showed me his Purdue Pete golf tee.
Andrew and Darci.
Shelly, Matt, Abbi, and Makenna.
Jamalyn, David, and Shylah.
I finally made it into the stadium in time to watch the pregame show.
Andrew and Darci and gang got to go on the field to cheer for the team as they came out. This was their view as they waited to line up.
Andrew, Darci, and Matthew.
Matthew even got to give five to Purdue Pete. On the field!
From my vantage point, this is how it looked as they were lining up.
Astronaut Gene Cernan was on campus for Homecoming, and delivered the game ball. Captain Cernan was the last man to walk on the moon. Purdue is proud to claim that the first man on the moon and the last man on the moon are both part of the Boilermaker family. Matthew got to meet Neil Armstrong and Gene Cernan in the summer of 2011 at a National Football Foundation event at Purdue.
I found my group in the crowd,
just before Andrew found me.
They all gave me a nice wave. So cooperative to smile for the camera. :)
Andrew is pointing to something in this one.
Here comes the team!
Go Boilers!

 Slapping hands with the players as they run onto the field.
 The band in the Block P formation.
The flags representing the teams in the Big Ten, which is actually made up of twelve teams.
Ready for my favorite part, "I Am An American."
"You can write them on your thumbnail, or sweep them clear across this gray October sky."
And it was gray. And it got grayer. More on that later.
At the end of the National Anthem, a Mustang P51-C did a flyover. We read about the plane on the way up to the game.

Unfortunately, after the excitement of the pregame tailgate, welcoming the team on the field, the band,  the flyover, and a touchdown on the first drive, things took a drastic turn for the worse. The play got worse, the weather got worse, and our spirits got worse. We donned our ponchos and stuck it out for a while before we headed back to the tailgate lot. Jim had a little tussle with a tarp he brought along, but finally got it in place.

Before long, the kids showed up, damp all over.

Matthew showed me his field pass for the game.
And stayed safely under his bright gold poncho. They must have sold thousands! At least hundreds. :)
We cooked some burgers under the tent before we decided to pack up our wet gear and head for home. The boys wrestled the tent into the van.
In the rain.
Still smiling.
Adam was elected to grab the flagpole and move the trash bags so we could exit the parking lot. He only had a 5 minute ride before he could change out of his wet clothes. We had 2 more hours. :)
All clear to head out.
And after watching the Boilers play on Saturday, we didn't blame this group one bit for deciding to take their tent and go home.