Favorite Food

My favorite food used to be a big, fat, juicy hamburger with "everything on it". Just thinking about this makes me sad. I used to LOVE Caesar salad and fresh salsa (I make really good fresh salsa!) but alas, I can not eat anything that is fresh. Or raw, if you want to be more specific. It really does stink. I hate watching my husband eat a salad and I can't have any. He is really good to me because he will not let me for any reason cheat and eat a piece of his lettuce. Right before I go to put the lettuce in my mouth he always says, "Rachel, you'll regret it!" And of course, rash comes and my mouth swells and all that fun stuff. My body just can't take it. Of course I react to some things more than others.

So, I bet you are wondering what my new favorite food is. Yeah, I bet you are holding your breath. It took me a long time to figure it out. I was at Miss Betsy's house for a spell one day and she told me she had left over Chinese food in the fridge. Lo and behold I found Kung Pao Chicken and I loved it so much I ate it cold. Now, I have always loved Kung Pao Chicken, but I think I realized that I more than love it. Heck, I ate it COLD.

Yeah, it is hot, yeah, it will burn in my stomach, and yeah, it will most likely give me cramps all night, but you know what, it is worth it. So now that you know my weakness do not tell my arch-enemy what can kill me. He might slip me a sliver of tomato in my plain hamburger and my throat will close off and I will surely die.


My middle child's quote of the day:

"T! (my oldest boy) Your cheeks are all rosy! It's like you're in love!"


New Blog

This new blog will be well worth your read in the many days ahead...


Medical Manual

Since my husband had heartburn last night, I am sitting here listening to my oldest son read all about it to me first thing in the morning.

Yesterday he was reading about bad breath. He read that the advice for bad breath in the manual is to merely "rinse your mouth with plain water. It does more than the mouth washes one can buy at the store." I think those people are nuts, actually.

At the moment he is reading, "...avoid tight clothing and tight belts..." And he keeps going...


One More Great Quote by Lewis:

"If God had granted all the silly prayers I have made in my life, where should I be now?"

More Lewis

I take comfort that this man is worshipping with us as we worship "with all the company of Heaven." He is like a rockstar to me. Here is his take on the Lord's Prayer, specifically the "thy will be done" part:

"...But more than that, I am at this very moment contemplating a new festoon. Tell me if you think it a vain sublety. I am beginning to feel that we need a preliminary act of submission not only towards possible future afflictions but also towards possible future blessings. I know it sounds fantastic; but think it over. It seems to me that we often, almost sulkily, reject the good that God offers us because, at that moment, we expected some other good. Do you know what I mean? On every level of our life----in our religious experience, in our gastronomic, erotic, aesthetic, and social experience,---we are always harking back to some occasion which seemed to us to reach perfection, setting that up as a norm, and depreciating all other occasions by comparison. But these other occasions, I know suspect, are often full of their own new blessing, if only we would lay ourselves open to it. God shows us a new facet of the glory, and we refuse to look at it because we're still looking for the old one. And of course we don't get that. You can't, at the twentieth reading, get again the experience of reading Lycidas for the first time. But what you do get can be in its own way as good.

This applies especially to the devotional life. Many religious people lament that the first fervours of their conversion have died away. They think--sometimes rightly, but not, I believe, always--that their sins account for this. They may even try by pitiful efforts of will to revive what now seem to have been the golden days. But were those fervours---the operative words is those---ever intended to last?

It would be rash to say that there is any prayer which God never grants. But the strongest candidate is the prayer we might express in the single word encore. And how should the Infinite repeat Himself? All space and time are too little for Him to utter Himself in them once.

And the joke, or tragedy, of it all is that these golden moments in the past, which are so tormenting if we erect them into a norm, are entirely nourishing, wholesome, and enchanting if we are content to accept them for what they are, for memories. Properly bedded down in a past which we do not miserably try to conjure back, they will send up exquisite growths. Leave the bulbs alone, and the new flowers will come up. Grub them up and hope, by fondling and sniffing, to get last year's blooms, and you will get nothing. 'Unless a seed die...'"

---C.S. Lewis from Letters to Malcolm


Peanut Cakes

I just finished making this major Wilhelm delicacy at Christmastime. Peanut Cakes. You take yellow cake, cut it into little squares, frost each side of the square and then roll the squares in finely ground peanuts. It is really labor intensive. I feel kind of gross. You know when you eat too much sugar or even when you are around too much sugar you get that sick taste in your mouth? I am right there. Ick.

My boys just came downstairs and told me that they had decided to hibernate for four days. They thought hibernating right under the tree would do well. It was short-lived because I told them "no" and once in awhile it sticks.

My house is a filth-bomb. I can not keep up with it. My house in Idaho was good bit smaller (1100 square feet) and a good once a week cleaning on a Saturday (which usually took me an hour and a half) did the job. It is not like I have ever wanted more living space. I never have. Wilhelm can vouch for that. We just sort of got what we got. I have a number of people to clean up after, so that may be part of the problem. I have one more bathroom to clean, two more sets of floors and a whole flight of stairs. I could keep going but I won't bore you. So, what am I doing on here? Heck, I don't know. Evading. Maybe blogging makes my house dirty...


I got my friend Betsy going on reading tons of Wilkie Collins, so she has picked up books that I have not even bothered to pick up yet. This woman is handing me books now saying, "Have you read this yet?"

I'm thinking, "Uh, I haven't read a book in a few months. I don't know what is wrong with me. I never thought I would say that I don't have time."

But, she gave me this one book that is pretty good so far. I decided to sit down one night and really read instead of fold laundry or something or other. It is called Man and Wife. It is basically about a maimed woman who thinks that she may be married to her betrothed's friend on accident. I know, silly, but Collins did know quite a lot about law in those days and he often made strange stories up with the information he had.

You guys should pick up some Collins, he is worth the read. At times he can be a pure mix of Dickens and Hardy. I see more and more Hardy as I read. Bad things happen, it is great.


The Rocket of Christmas

My youngest son actually whips out the calculator and counts the HOURS until Christmas. I keep telling him that he needs to not obsess about it. He will say to me, "I know, I know, I am getting obsessed. ---But I really can't wait until Christmas!"

In the car: "Only one hundred and thirty four days until Christmas!"

"How did you know that?"

"I calculated it when I got up this morning."

"Oh. You nut."

A few days ago this kid kept talking about Christmas and presents. I gave him the look that meant, "you are obsessed and Christmas means more than presents!" I think he very well knows this look because he said, " Mom, I can't wait for Christmas so much. I know I am obsessed. Please pray that I will be thankful!"

I am sure I don't help matters much at times. I caught myself telling my oldest son (the big one) that his stocking is full to the brim. He put up his fists in a surge of energy and his eyes popped out. He finished it off with the sound of a tea kettle whistling at full blast.

I know, it was shocking to me too. This is something he does periodically when he can't contain his excitement. I think on Christmas day when he gets the microscope or the gameboy games he wants he is going to spontaneously combust. I can imagine him doing the tea kettle thing again and launching off through the ceiling. No more oldest son. He went sky rocketing into space and can be seen no more.


Funny Faces

My daughter was being goofy. She was making faces at me by squinting and putting up her fists. This is a face that she seems to think is a laughable one. I told her, "Girlie, you definitely are original!"

She said to me, "I definitely am hilarious!"

Didn't know she knew that word!


A Lesson

This is on my "to read" list today. I think you all should give it a read. I have read it in the past and it did not effect me then. I think it will do me good now. The author is Doug Wilson's father, who I have been told from a trusty and knowledgeable source that when he rebukes or speaks in a correcting manner the recipient would never know, he is so graceful. I am in awe of an ability like that.


A Reason to Smile

About a month or more ago I was at a worship music meeting for my church and the lady that does the sound, Asha, told me that she just got an iPod and it is so cool. I will quote her: "I didn't really think I wanted one, but once I had one, I thought, I need this!" I am paraphrasing, but she said essentially that. It made me laugh because she was further saying that "all her favorite songs" are on this thing, so when she is walking down the streets of DC she is listening to her iPod and she just wants to hug everybody and smile at them. I went home and told this to my husband. He laughed. Guess what I got for my birthday. Yep, I don't even have to say it.

So, I am listening to a shuffle of Oasis, Eisley, Grant Lee Phillips, Sarah McLachlan, Coldplay, and u2. I don't feel like hugging anyone or even smiling at anyone (I am not as nice as Asha) but this is pretty cool.


Getting Older

My oldest is at the Dennis the Menace age where he hates to get wet and get clean. I literally have to drag him to the shower, turn it on, and guide him in there. Oftentimes what happens is that once he is in there he does not wash his hair, or he doesn't wash is body. He will come to us dripping, saying, "Well, I took a shower!" I will take a whiff of his hair and it will still smell oily. You know, that "I haven't washed my hair in four days" funk. "Get your butt back up there!" I yell. On top of this he gets pretty ripe under his arms. It's like he turned into a mini man over night. So, I have had to start buying him Right Guard and hopefully if he remembers after the shower, he will put it on for his own sake and maybe ours.

My oldest has an old friend (who is a year or so younger than he is) who moved to Wisconsin a year ago from Idaho. We got a Christmas card with a picture of her and her sisters and he noticed it setting there on the frige. "Mom!" my oldest says.

"What's that?" I ask him.

He is looking at the picture on the frige intently. "Well, Audrey will NEVER be able to get to my age at the same time as me no matter how old she gets, will she?" he says with animation.

"Nope. So, what do you think of Audrey? Does she look older? Has she changed to you?"

He starts running off and says this through the house: "Yeah! She looks older! Old enough to wear deodorant!"

My laugh was muffled but in my mind it could be heard from outside.


The Helmet Breakers

A future band is on the rise. The members include my two sons (namely my youngest son). They are called "The Helmet Breakers".
Here is a few song titles that especially struck my fancy:

1.Money's Too Much
2. Christmas Love
3. Can You See
4. Bang on the Run (a little like "Band on the Run")
5. Too Much
6. Total Blackout
7. Emergency Breakdown
8. XXX
9. The Emergency Squad
10. Magical Key (we are almost getting Beatles here)
11. Love that Girl (this, I was told, is to be like "Love Me Do")
12. Up to 100 Years Old
13. 18 and Up Can Drive a Car
14. I Am Only Six

My youngest son said that he is going to sing and then other people that he meets later in life will play the instruments. He absolutely has no real music to go with these song titles, just titles and no actual songs, so it is hilarious that he thinks that once the Helmet Breakers really rise they will write songs according to the notes of a six year old boy.



My four year old daughter was laughing in the back seat of the car last week because the trees were "bare maked". She was pointing at them in their shame.

I wonder why I just don't appreicate the beauty of my children more. This life is so distracting. I get so caught up and God has given me these little brilliant lives to care for and sometimes all I can think about is getting them to bed so I can rest! I would say that I don't know what the answer is, but I think I do know the answer. I just forget it all the time because I am a dunce. I know that if I love the Lord with all my heart I will love my neighbor as myself. I will think beyond myself and my own rest will not be the issue any longer. I will actually find rest in NOT resting! Lord, give me joy I pray!


Blank. Complete blank.



I was just playing Rumi with my oldest. He beat the living tar out of me the first game. He said just that too. "I beat the TAR out of you, Mom! I bet no one could surpass a record so strong!" The boy rarely triumphs over me at a card game (except Uno and I hate Uno!). All those years of sitting around the house as a kid playing games with my sister or just playing solitare paid off. I am shocked at how competitive I get. I remember when my kids first got the game Trouble. It is a fast-paced board game where you knock each other out and try to get "6's" in order to get back in again. For some reason kids have all the luck with dice. I remember at one point (this was a few years ago) I was so livid with anger about the stupid game because I wanted to win! What is really silly is that I was playing with my kids.

This will make my husband's eyes roll a double whammy. I remember when we were dating my brother got an x box or nintendo or something and he had this light sabre Star Wars game. If you were the best you got to be Darth Vader and just rip your opponent apart because you had all the cool tricks. My husband and I would play this game (note he was not my husband at the time) and he would just rip me to shreds every time. I was actually a really good sport at it but wanted to beat him someday. I especially hated the fact that I could never be Darth Vader because I stunk so bad at this game. Believe it or not, I would practice before he would come over and I got pretty good. I could be Darth and everything. I even learned some crazy trick that no one else knew and I became unbeatable. When I pulled this on my husband he was like, "there is no way---my control must be broken! How did you do that?!" We would be playing Darth Vader versus Darth Vader and my Darth Vader became more powerful than his Darth Vader "could possibly imagine". I really thought that it was all fun and games. Everytime I would win I would giggle and bounce around and hug my husband like he was Bob Barker on the Price is Right. I was just happy I could beat him at something. I remember one time I played Trivial Pursuit (don't do this to yourself ever!) with the man and he was the first player and his "turn" did not end until he got every wedge and won the game. No one even got a turn. He tried to teach me chess once and he plowed me down so fast I had no idea what hit me. I have tried playing Scrabble with him and I tell you, don't do this to yourself either. Somehow he always gets those 40 point triple word scores and you are essentially left in the dust with your sad little word "toy" as your only triumph because hey, you used a "Y"! In short, we never played that game again. I have since learned that it is not "cute" to do that to a guy that is used to winning.

So---when my son gloats about beating the tar out of me, sure, it hurts. Well, I guess it doesn't that bad. Besides, I think he only learned the phrase "beat the tar out" from me anyway. So I must not have learned my lesson because I still must gloat. If I can ever get my husband to play Scrabble or Trivial Pursuit with me and by some divine miracle I win, that is cause for gloating! That is a once in a life time chance to be on top of the world! I might get shot, but it would be a good death!


Mean, Crazy, Cold

The heater is not working correctly. The landlady just pretty much hung up on me after I asked her again (the fourth time) to get the problem fixed. She did a series of cut-me-offs and excuses and then said, "goodbye" and hung up. I don't get it. Another great morning beginning on the right foot.

I just wish that during Christmastime people would be nicer or at least try harder to be nice so that I would not have to try so hard to have a good time. Of course I have been experiencing a lot of things lately where I have had to set boundaries or just put my foot down. I had a dream that someone said to me, "You have gotten so mean since you've decided to set these boundaries." I have been cowardly in the past and saying no was really hard for me. If being brave, setting some boundaries and saying no when I can not or will not is being mean, I guess I am. I rather like "being mean" better. I know where I stand!

Of course I am having this conversation with myself because I am the one that thought of the "being mean" issue (because of my silly dream). So great, now I'm mean AND I'm crazy.


Embracing Plunging

I can't think of anything to write about. I woke up having to unclog a toilet full of brown loveliness, it would not work, so I had to drive in the snow to the hardware store (with three sick kids, mind you) to get a new plunger, a snake, a snow scraper for our car (which I did not have and had to use my hands!), and some bleach. Before getting to the store two cars just completely crashed right in front of me so I had to sort of slide by them to get to my destination. I was like, "Hold on kids, and pray we don't get crashed into!"

Made it home in one piece, thankfully. I was wrathful. I can't even explain to you the stench, the nastiness, the monster I was at odds with. I don't want to scare you, ladies, but when you are a mother, sometimes excrement becomes part of your life. I still have not embraced it.

The moral of the story: Get one of these.



I must admit I am addicted to Trader Joe's. I was talking to Miss Betsy about it today and she is too. What is it about Trader Joe's that is so stinking wonderful? I pretty much think it is everything. Those of you in Idaho be informed that a Trader Joe's is like a Win-co and a Cost Plus World Market combined. ---And you get these really cool thick, paper bags to use later for just about anything.

My kids hate it!



I have found that I can fight all day and every day for a douse of Godly peace and it does not come because it is already here. I find that in a twisted way, it's not the kind I want. I want worry-free days, no interruptions, no hardships. I can choose to have peace---really, joy that comes from Jesus. I think prayer is the key. As Keith Green has said, "make my life a prayer to you.." I have found in all things that I can never do any good on my own. I may just beg and plead with Him to pick me up and keep me safe when He just may choose to tightly hold my hand instead. He teaches us all in different ways.

The promise is that He is with us, that He came and death is conquered. What else can touch you? "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things shall be added to you."

At this "season" I know that I need Him and the enemy has no power.


Fearful and Fanciful Mind

I just got back from running again. My oldest has been begging me to take him so this time I did. He didn't make it past a few blocks and said that he would have to walk the rest of the way. I told him to just go down a block and make a right and go home. The kid is nine years old, I don't know why I did this, but I was really reluctant to let him go. I did though and I saw him jogging off in the opposite direction. I immediately had thoughts of someone shooting him before he got to the front door or some car hitting him (they do speed down the street!). Before I knew it I heard sirens and it seemed like they never faded but just stopped eventually. I was far gone in my thoughts, thinking of a funeral, what I would say, how my husband would react, how empty the world would be, without my oldest. By the end of my run I was almost sobbing and when I realized this I saw how ridiculous I am! How utterly ridiculous! I always leave something and come back thinking that a doom bomb is going to hit.

When I lived in my house in Idaho we lived on a corner lot. If I went shopping and I had to drive by my house I would always look at it to make sure it was not "burning down". For years whenever I would leave the house I would tell my husband that if I never made it back home that I loved him.

Whenever I drive to D.C. now (or anywhere far and somewhat dangerous) I think, "this could be it! This could be my day!"

I suppose I have a fearful and fanciful mind.

At any rate, I was relieved to see my boy's shoes thrown on the entry way floor (I am never happy to see that, but I was thinking he could be dead!)---and I guess like Nemo's dad I need to "lighten up." Good grief.



I knew that if I looked through some of C.S. Lewis' writings I would find that his thoughts on pride were similar to mine (or maybe mine are similar to his! Let me not kid myself! Ha ha!). Read what he says, this is worth your while:

"According to Christian teachers, the essential vice, the utmost evil, is Pride. Unchastity, anger greed, drunkeness, and all that, are mere fleabites in comparison: it was through Pride that the devil became the devil: Pride leads to every other vice: it is the complete anti-God state of mind...."

It keeps getting so good and making me even more uncomfortable as I read! I love it!
Look at this and chew on it:

"If you want to find out how proud you are, the easiest way is to ask yourself, 'How much do I dislike it when other people snub me, or refuse to take any notice of me, or shove their oar in, or patronize me, or show off?' the point is that each person's pride is in competition with everyone else's pride. It is because I wanted to be the big noise at the party that I am so annoyed at someone else being the big noise. Two of a trade never agree. Now what you want is clear is that Pride is essentially competitive--is competitive by its very nature--while the other vices are competitive only, so to speak, by accident. Pride gets no pleasure out of having something, only out of having more of it than the next man. We say that people are proud of being rich, or clever, or good-looking, but they are not. They are proud of being richer, or cleverer, or better-looking than others. If everyone else became equally rich, or clever, or good-looking, there would be nothing to be proud about. It is the comparison that makes you proud: the pleasure of being above the rest. Once the element of competition has gone, pride has gone. That is why I say that Pride is essentially competitive in a way other vices are not. The sexual impulse may drive two men into competition if they both want the same girl. But that is only by accident; they might just as likely have wanted two different kind of girls. But a proud man will take your girl from you, not because he wants her, but just to prove to himself that he is a better man than you. Greed may drive men into competition if there is not enough to go round; but the proud man, even when he has got more than he can possibly want, will try to get still more just to assert his power. Nearly all those evils in the world which people put down to greed or selfishness are really far more the result of pride..."



I don't really want to debate about this, I just wonder what opinions are. I think that behind every "type" of sin (hatred, fear, worry, doubt,lying, etc.) self-love (or what I call pride) is behind it all. I tend to think it all springs from "I think I am the center of the universe, don't cross me," type thing. I think we were born in sin thinking this way (those of you with children, look at them, it is evident).

For example, if I lie to someone and tell them that my hair is my natural color, I have the motive of wanting people to think I am what I view as perfect. It boosts my ego, pets my pride. That is a silly example, but it is true. I think as small and minute it gets (the sin) the more it points to the self love that is behind it all.

Look at Satan.

Look at Eve who, at the prospect of being like God if she ate the fruit disobeyed. Disobedience springs from self-love. "Don't tell me what to do, I know better!"

Whenever I say this to someone (and I have not said it much) they always seem surprised. What is so radical about that? Mindi, I know you have a ton of wisdom on this! Take it on! :)


Let's Get in "Tune" With our Emotions!

I was watching a tiny snippet yesterday of a woman teacher on TBN (I can't remember who she was but she seemed nice enough and had a Southern accent---blonde. I think I have seen her on other shows with a husband talking about marriage)who was pretty much telling a man audience that women need stability from them. She started to make an analogy of "you could bring your wife into a brand new mansion of her dreams and I guarantee you the first few days she is going to cry. I know you would think, 'I provided all this stuff for you, even the mansion of your dreams and you are upset!' I tell you, don't be upset at her, she just needs you to put her arms around her and assure her that this will take adjustments and she will need to support you at this time...women are like this."

Umm, spoiled women are like this. Going to cry over moving into a huge mansion? I would cry over the idea of cleaning the whole thing myself every Wednesday, that is what I would cry about!---Not over moving into a mansion and I "just can't cope with the change of it." I think real women are adaptable women, not a bunch of whinny, sobby, over-emotional wrecks that cry over an overload of riches. That is ridiculous.
Where is God in this story?
Cry for the many homeless people in this world that would take a few feet of the floor of your mansion to live on!

Lots of venom, I know, sorry.



The kids were watching a television show. Some commercial was on where some guy's voice was beckoning my children to watch "Sabrina the Teenage Witch". Of course, this is a show that they can not watch, so as this guy was saying stuff like, "Don't miss out on Sabrina! She is wily and wonderful! Give her a chance and watch her at three!" or something like that, the kids started to talk back to the guy and say, "No, that's a bad show! We can't watch it!" --- my oldest.
My daughter says, "No way!" or something like that,
and my middle child says, (this is crude)"No! Are you crazy? I can't watch it! I go poop at that time!"

Typical male?

Thanksgiving Afterthoughts

This morning I decided to *not* pull out the books and let the kids have another day off of school (I know, I am strict). While at breakfast the kids were discussing yesterday, Thanksgiving. I can't even remember what my oldest said. Something about the food, I think. Perhaps the turkey and how he loved it and how he loved drinking pop all day. I think that sounds right. My youngest (the girl) said that she loved her new friend Joannella (who came to eat with us) because she is so beautiful and she plays dolls so well, etc. etc. My middle boy said, "I really liked Thanksgiving. I liked it 87%." He can't give me a straight answer why it is exactly 87%, he just says stuff like, well, it is almost 90.

I had put out almonds in a dish among other snacks and appetizers. I think he ate the whole dish. He did not know he liked almonds at first, he just kept eating them. He told me after the first few that he only liked almonds about 45%. I said, "you hate them that much?" He says, "No, I love them 45%. That's a lot." OK. Later that evening I saw him sneak another almond in his mouth and I said, "Really liking those almonds, eh?"
"Yes, Mom. I think I love them 95%. I hated them a little at first, but now I love them a lot!"

His percents in the positive are "love it" and his percents in the negative are "hate it" So if he loved Thanksgiving 87% that would mean he hated it 13%. I wonder what he hated?



This Thanksgiving turned out well, I thought. It is the first time in seven years that I have been able to sit next to my husband while eating a Thanksgiving dinner, and I am thankful for that. I have the greatest husband alive. His past job required him to work 12 hour shifts holiday or no holiday so I often spent Christmas or Thanksgiving (always) without him. I am glad he was present during the Thanksgiving where I made the whole meal (which I have never done before and have always wanted to). It was really fun and everything turned out great(except for the gravy--but thankfully, I did not need gravy because the turkey was not dry!!), so I am thankful for that as well. I think it was an overall good time with friends from church. I am so happy that we were able to spend this time with them. It was probably boring, but my husband and I are pretty low key. Mr. Wilhelm did say when they left, "In retrospect, I think we should have played games or something." I laughed and said, "what? scrabble? We have no games! I was just happy with good conversation." And that we had.


Thoughtful Entry

Here is a great blog entry by a friend from church. The thoughts seem to be based a lot on this past week's sermon by our pastor, Dan Claire, which is great because I totally missed the whole thing. I was downstairs with the kids (which I absolutely adored doing---I never knew how much I missed it!). Give it a read if you haven't already.

Little Teacher

My oldest son (who is nine) is quite a Christian. Everything is plainly black and white to him. A few days ago, as is his custom, he pulled out his Mayo Medical Manual for a little light reading at breakfast. As I was putting the bread in the toaster I said, "Hey, what are you reading about in there?"

"Oh, well, I am really interested in suicide. It tells a lot about it in here. It says that a person is usually full of grief...then it says there is really no cure for grief..but that is silly...these people should just pray to Jesus! He is the cure, Right Mom?!"

"You are absolutely right," I said.

"Yeah, Mom. I don't get how these people don't know this stuff. These people that wrote this must not believe in Jesus!" He shakes his head shamefully.

When I told my husband this he had to laugh. He is the one who stated later that he thinks so black and white. He really does. He then told me that every Sunday at church during any time of the service he is wiping away tears (sometimes several times a service). Mr. Wilhelm has asked what he is crying about and he says that he doesn't really know, he just cries.

I have a lot to learn from my son. I can be icy, unfeeling and unmoved when the Spirit is present. Sure, there are many times when I am moved to tears during a service, but this child proves to me that a child-like faith is better than mine. I am sure our Lord delights in children who believe in Him. Everyone knows it says that we must become like little children. I am my son's teacher in so many ways but definitely in this way he is mine.


Austen Fan Bliss

My results from the quiz:

The Mansfield Park type: Another under-represented
and misunderstood type, these people are
serious-minded and not afraid to stand up for
their principles. They admire others who do the
same. Possessing a bit of a protective streak,
they are ever-ready to defend their
unfortunately oft-abused heroine, and have
inexplicably never had the urge to hit Edmund
over the head with a 2 x 4 (okay, maybe that's
just me...:-D).

Jane Austen novel quiz
brought to you by Quizilla

Running in the Rain

I just got back from what else but running in the rain. I have only done this a few times. I love the rain, I absolutely love it. I got pretty drenched, but it was worth it. A good run too. I am getting better at those hills.

The rain always makes me think of my husband who is fond of it as well. I remember before I dated him I saw him enter a house (I was inside the house) with a raincoat on. When someone commented on the "nasty weather" he said that he loved the rain. In my boldness (as some friends would say) I said (really without thinking) "Oh man, you are scoring points!"

Rain brings us all together. I can feel the love. Right on.


Pride and Prejudice

Two friends of mine from church accompanied me to see Pride and Prejudice last night. We were late because it was impossible to find a parking space---it took us 20 minutes. I can't believe the amount of people that go to the movies in Fairfax. It was a Friday night, but it is sad how many people live for the weekend. I think it is kind of a sad existence.

Anyway, we came in late, but that didn't matter much to me, I know the story fairly well, so it didn't effect me much. My friends and I all had to sit in seperate seats (none together) so that was the first time I have ever sat alone in a theatre. It was quite funny because I was really in front and I spotted two seats and went down the aisle (saying "excuse me, excuse me") and finally I get to the seats and these young people are just making out like crazy. The lady two seats down said, "they have been doing that ever since the movie started and it is so gross!" I think they heard her, but they kept going. They had some of their stuff on one of the seats I wanted to snatch, so I tapped the guy on the shoulder (he was closest to me) and with a "smack" he was like, "huh?" and I said, "is this seat taken?"
"Uhhh, no."
"Thank you."
The really embarrassing thing is that the lady two seats down (I ended up sitting next to her and my friends found other seats not knowing what I was doing) kept talking about it and congratulating me on my boldness. The people could hear her, I am sure. I wanted to smack her. She kept making noises and commenting on the movie like a regular spectator THE WHOLE TIME. She squealed when squealing could be called for (I guess) and made grunts and noises of disapproval for characters she disdained, and she was over all annoying. I am darned tooting sure that if there was something sad that happened she would be a bawling mess. I am sure she would have wiped her nose on me too.

So, the movie was good, I thought. Like a friend said, it was full of sexual tension and focused much on Mr. Darcy. I particularly liked the scene where Mr. Darcy proposes to Elizabeth in the rain. I know that is not how it happens, but it was just better. My friend Catherine who went with me said that the movie had a big splash of Bronte in it, which I thought a very notable comment. I agree. I think that is why I really liked it. I thought the cinematography was really great---although I really did not like a mistake I saw in the film---when Elizabeth was dancing with Mr. Darcy I could see Keira Knightly's earpiece (so she can hear her lines in a commotion or something). She looked like she had a growth in her ear, and I totally missed most of that dialogue looking at her ear in disgust.
I thought it was good, yes. A little too cheesy/romantic at the end, but no one dies in every movie, right? Elizabeth is not about to throw herself in a weir or anything. I would be dreaming and Jane Austen would roll over in her grave.


I am really sickened. I went to go buy Coldplay tickets two hours after the sale (on accident) and now all they have left are nosebleed seats for 56 dollars a piece. I prefer not to see Chris Martin as a speck in the distance. I may as well dim the lights at home and just play the cd. I am spoiled though because the last tour I got fourth row seats and now that Coldplay is so huge it is like trying to get a good ticket at a U2 concert. Impossible.
The really frustrating thing is that we are members of their website and for both visits to our area they never "randomly selected" us for a presale that they have for the fans. If we were randomly selected, it would cost us $80 anyway (a piece) which is nuts.
Anyone who has tickets to give away for free post away. I would be your friend forever.



Well, I am going to go see Pride and Prejudice tonight with a friend from church. I actually enjoy this story by Austen and maybe Persuasion (and a few others were ok) but I am not a crazy Austen fan. I think she is too flighty, a bit too petty, and somewhat snobby. I tried reading Emma this past spring and I just could not finish it. I thought Emma was so snobbish that I was not interested in her at all. I still have not seen the movie and I am sure I am missing out.

I was talking to a friend the other night and we were discussing literature. She was confessing to me that she is not an Austen fan either and she loves Bronte and Dostoyevsky.I do think the divide is there with Austen fans and non-Austen fans. I am right there. I have read some Bronte (I enjoyed Jane Eyre and Vilette and Wuthering Heights by Emily) and I have read a few things by Dostoyevsky, and I love him as well. I love the dark side of literature---I think the side that makes you think a little more. I don't see a lot of literary symbols in Austen, just a sort of romantic fluff. But perhaps I am wrong. My pet author is Hardy, so if any of you know of Thomas Hardy you will know why I am not too keen on Austen. I can't even begin to describe Hardy to you if you have never read him. He is full of irony, tragedy, and nothing ever goes right. He is a bit hard to read at first (he is noted as the "King of Description") but I find his descriptions so full of all those things you have tried to say but have never had the words. The Return of the Native is my favorite novel by this man. I went through a period (a number of years ago) when I just wanted to read his stuff and I read all the novels. I am just finishing up all the short stories now.

I think the best thing I like about Hardy is the fact that he knew women. He loved women and he knew them. He depicted them perfectly. When I read about Eustacia Vye (from ROTN) I saw myself. I think that is what good literature is---it is real, not fake. An author who has the ability to express things correctly to an audience obviously outside himself is a gifted person. I think Hardy is that man. A true artist. But that is my opinion.

So all you rabid Austen fans don't bite me. Just accept me, ok, I am really a nice person.


One of a Kind Kiddie Game

I just caught my two boys playing what they call, "The Not Sinning Game" in which one does horrible things (like hitting, kicking, name calling) to the other and the other has to react in a non-sinful manner. I thought, well, that is funny.

I found my oldest pounding on my youngest boys' arm while my youngest boy just smiled and tried to think of something hilarious to do to "lose on purpose" because that is "more fun."

What kind of game is that?

We also bit the bullet and got cable installed today (to my sadness) but Thanksgiving is not the same when you can barely see the football players on the t.v. screen, now is it? I would rather watch a Twilight Zone marathon. Not that that is bad.

So, my oldest son is visibly happy that we have cable now. He was sitting at the school table this morning as the cable guy was installing and he said, "You know Mom, it's nice that we are getting cable, but I really am happy with the way our old TV was too!" He does this. He always wants to prove to me that he is happy with what he has. At the moment he is watching Tom and Jerry and laughing his rear end off.

Ugh. I hate TV. Gotta go run up those incredible hills for a spell!

Popcorn and Prejudice

The other night I was exhausted. My husband sits down next to me on our bed (we were both reading---does his laptop count?) and he talks about how horribly he made popcorn the night before. I was gone, so I couldn't make it for him. "Oh, man, Rachel, it was awful. It was the most awful popcorn I have ever had!"

I said, "I get the hint. You want me to make you some popcorn."

"Well, you do make it the best. I can't go back."

Oh brother.

I have posted about this already. It really is a recurring thing with us though. I don't mind at all making the popcorn, but he is using his Minnesotan parents' tricks (they used to claim he made popcorn the best when he was a kid----apparently not, because I do, eh?) to get me downstairs cranking the whirly pop or plugging in the popper.

It works every time too.

I waltzed down there and made it thinking all the while, "I make the best popcorn!"

Come on over sometime, you guys, and have the best popcorn of your life at my house. Mr. Wilhelm swears by it.
Really, it's not that good.


Horrid Metal

Jewelry freaks me out. I hate metal on my skin. Or any ornament, for that matter. I tolerate my wedding ring (I had a hard time at first, but now I am used to it), but other than that I hate jewelry.

Someone sent a list to me a few weeks ago talking about how great it is to be a woman and how we don't regret all these things. One of the things was piercing the ears. I regret that. Only because now I just have little dimples in my ears and not actual holes. I don't want holes anyway. I would rather they closed up totally.

Before Mr. Wilhelm and I got engaged we went to a jewelry store to look at diamond engagement rings. I warned the man that I did not care for one, but he thought I was just being nice and cheap or something. I don't think he had a clue how much those things cost anyway. I stood there looking at a bunch of clear rocks totally uninterested and baffled at the price. I would have to pay thousands of dollars to put something detestible on my skin! No way! I imagined turning over in bed one night getting the rock stuck in my nose. Even worse. I begged him to be rid of the idea that I wanted a diamond ring and told him to just get me a band if he ever knew what was right for him. I thought it funny though when I did get engaged (I have two bands---one wedding, one engagement) how people would ask to "see" my ring and I would show them my band just as happy as anyone else.

So, my daughter is hanging out with her Aunt and her Aunt gets all generous and gives her all this jewelry and stuff. While my daughter is in metal heaven, I am in metal hell. Imagine how I have to pick this stuff up. It literally makes me want to throw up, I am that weird about it. I am not picking it up anymore. If I have to I will vacuum the stuff up.

So, we will not get on the subject of coinage. All of you who know me, just don't mention this stuff when I am eating. Really disturbing.


Groceries and "Black Powdery Stuff"

I have gotten started late this morning. I had a ton of email. The kids are still upstairs playing or something, I am sure they are not sleeping. My oldest complained yesterday that he has "black stuff" in his throat and it feels "powdery". He further said, "I think I have a sore throat." I said, "Well, we don't have to do math, but you have to do your other subjects."
He said, "I thought you would say that."

He later said, "I think I am feeling a little better and I want to go on break outside."
"Really?" I asked, "Then I suppose that we could work on your math lesson after break, eh?"
"Well, I am still feeling a bit powdery in my throat."
"That's what I thought."
So, we just sat around inside (big shock) and did a bunch of nothing. I didn't. I cleaned my house and did all the usual. There is always bucketfuls of laundry to do.

Today, however, is grocery day. You know the routine. It consists of my trying to purchase a great number of food items while trying to keep my children next to me. It also consists of trying to convince other people that these children that I am so desperately trying to keep beside me are MINE. Ugh. Here we go again. Maybe we will have yet another amusing story tomorrow.

So, I am not sure if I will school today or not. I have not seen the black powdery pirate yet. I know, it is late in the morning too. It will be a crazy day, I tell you, a crazy day.


Bit on the Bottom

One night my youngest boy asks me in the car (I think it was the same night we went out to dinner), "Mom, do you hate taking care of us?"

"No," I said, "I love taking care of you, but sometimes I am selfish and want my own way and then I get upset and then I act like I hate taking care of you. Why do you ask that?"

"Oh, just sometimes you yell and stuff."

"Yeah, well that is when I am being sinful and selfish."

"Oh, ok."

A couple days pass.

Heaven forbid I feed my youngest daughter FOOD. She is wimpering and whining, the usual. Does not want to eat. I can't even remember what it was. She starts saying stuff and then starts to cry. She says, "Mom, you're being so mean to me!"

"Why? Because I want you to be healthy and feed your body? Because I told you to eat your food?"


My oldest boy says (apparently he was listening that fateful night in the car---BIG SHOCK), "(my daughter's name)---Mom is just being selfish right now. She wants her own way, right Mom?"

These posts are looking more and more like a Family Circle comic strip.



This post on my husband's blog really bothered me. Look at "Sad but True" and give the link a read.


The Millionth Time

Since I have moved here I have been bombarded with ejaculations of surprise over the fact that I have three kids. It happens CONTINUALLY. I mean, every time I go out. Last night my husband and I decided to take the kids out to dinner and we arrived in separate cars. As the kids and I were waiting for Dad to pull up, an older gentleman pulls up and looks at me and peers in wonder. He says the typical, "These aren't yours, are they?"

By now I just say, "Yeah."

"Really?" Wide-eyed.


He points at my oldest (who is almost as big as me, by the way) who is sitting on the other side of the bench. "Even him?"


"You don't look nearly old enough."

"Well, I am."



This happens all the time. No one believes me. They act like I must be ten or something.

I get funny with the responses. Last night I was just tired. I did not feel like coming up with anything fun to say. I like to say, "believe me, I pumped them out, each one of them!"
or, "Well, no, I am not really old enough."
Or my personal favorite, "Yes, they are mine. Yes, I am young. I was a child and then I had children."
I should think of more. It really becomes monotonous in my life, this trying to convince people that the kids are mine. This one lady at the grocery store asked me about ten times over and over to the point where I almost lifted my shirt to show her my stretch marks.

The deal is that no one my age or under thirty has kids here. They all have careers or are students. I say "here" because it is true of this particular geographical location. It is not true, however, where I am from, like Idaho or somewhere less expensive to live or something. So, I will just surrender to the fact that people think I am too young! It will be nice when my kids are out of the house when I am 41. What to do?



Let me intrigue you with how my oldest talks:

Tonight the kids were rough housing. They were crawling around and pretending they were various animals, you know the routine. My oldest is absolutely obsessed with this Pac Man shirt he got from Target. It has three ghosts on it and it is way too big for him. In fact, it looks akin to a dress, but he doesn't care. He first saw this shirt in some run down Mc Donald's in some dumpy Virginia town on the way back from Chincoteague Island. Some punk kid was wearing it and my oldest was like, "That is the coolest shirt I have ever seen!" Mr. Wilhelm has instilled a love of Atari games in our son apparently. Anyway, we were at a Target and he saw it and of course, he begged me like nothing else for the stinking shirt. So, he wears this thing constantly. He reserves it in his drawer after wearing it the previous day and then pulls it out to wear. It gets stains on it, he wipes his mouth on it I am sure, and when it does get washed he puts that thing on as fast as he can. If any of you know me, that is how I was with my Wonder Woman shirt when I was a kid. I can relate to this. So as you may well imagine he is wearing the thing as I type.
Well, like I said, the kids were rough housing. My oldest comes up to me in great haste and concern and says between short breaths, "Mom! They were pulling my shirt! Look!" He turns around to show me how it is slightly pulled up around the collar. He continues to say, "Did they inflict damage!?"


Roll Back America

Does anyone feel guilty shopping at Wal-mart but shops there sometimes anyway because you know the prices are so low it would be wiser for your wallet?

We had this discussion last night at small group (it was not part of the lesson or anything). We have a lot of political people at our small group, so we really can't get away from that kind of discussion. I pretty much know nothing about politics, but feel horrible about Wal-mart. I think it is good and all that because it provides jobs, but of course, it closes down the local small stores, etc. etc. My pastor was saying that places like Wal-mart and Disney (I am really paraphrasing) start to shape our society----it's like they have jumpstarted a new culture. I hate it, now that I look at it.

I feel like that mean dad on speed racer that loathes cars and refuses to drive them so he rides a horse around instead. I am just not gutsy enough to ride the horse. ---So I feel guilty when I drive the car!


The Verve Reborn

I just put in one of my favorite CDs today by a band called The Shore. They sound so similar to The Verve that it is crazy. If you don't know who they are they have a song on the radio called "Hard Road" and I can't remember what the other single is.

It is funny how I discovered them. I was on my way home from picking up Liam's glasses (almost a year ago now) and I heard them on the radio. I thought, "My goodness, this sounds like the Verve!" Thankfully the jockey stated who they were. In fact, I think that was the first play they had on the station, if I remember right.

The really hilarious thing is that they are NOT from England, which is a little bit disappointing, but great because hey, I wish I were British too.

I think they are from L.A. Go figure. I'm from Cali too.


You Know, All That Crazy Stuff

Dinner with my kids can be hilarious sometimes when I am not on their backs to stop talking with food in their mouths or to use their napkin. For some reason last night they were arguing (the boys were) about whether "girls rule" or "boys rule". I know, stupid, but this is what kids talk about. My oldest (he is nine) argued that they "both rule" because they have different functions. He continued to say, "Well, don't get me wrong or anything, I kind of like girls, but I don't care about getting married or sex or any of that crazy stuff."

As you may well imagine, I almost choked.

I did a sort of double take like, "What did you say?" He repeated it. He did ask at one time what sex meant (a long time ago---he loves to read medical manuals) , but he used the word so casually. It was hilarious.

He continued to say, "Yeah, and I'm not going to be one of those teenagers who have posters of girls on their walls either!"

I said, "Where did you get that from?"

He said, "Oh, I don't know, I just know that for some reason."

I said, "Well, that is lust anyway and I would not allow it."

My youngest son said, "Yeah, it would be funny if real girls were hanging from the walls!" Then he proceeded to imitate a girl hanging from a wall saying, "help me!" in a falsetto. He realized what I had said just then. He said, "What is lust?"

I said, "Lust is wanting something you can't have."

So my oldest son said, "Yeah, like, you know, the lust of the flesh!"

I about died.


Local Career Women

It is really strange. I go to a church where there are countless career women----or at least women who are single with no families of their own. They have degrees---lots work on the Hill, or write, or do something crazy that I would never dream of myself doing. This is what happens after the dream of completing college. Last night I was singing at a benefit concert and we had a lady come from my bible study to babysit. We all got into a conversation with her once we were home and my husband asked her what she really wanted to do (since her job is not exactly what she wants). I was surprised at her answer. She said that she wants to be a mom. I know of a few more ladies that have this same dream. It is just funny how blessed I am---how my position in life could be a dreamlife to others.



Here is my favorite poem by Catherine Claire, a dear friend of mine. God has gifted her with the pen and I am in awe of it.

Led Zep

I have never been a fan of Led Zeppelin, but lately that same cd that my husband has been listening to has been in the car. I can't get enough of "Baby I'm Gonna Leave You". I think it is their best song like "Kashmir". Most Led Zep songs are just a sort of going on forever and Plant just screaming and jyrating around. I never knew I would like it.


Walter Wick's Biggest Fan

My middle child is obsessed with I Spy. I am about to go crazy on account of it. Everything is about I Spy.

The other night we were praying during our Bible lesson and it was his turn to pray. He thanked God for Walter Wick.

It doesn't stop here though. It goes further. He wants to make his own I Spy by making a great big mess and taking pictures of it. Then, for the finale, he can write a riddle (that rhymes) so one can "find" little objects in the heap of junk. I have this kid constantly at my heels begging me to look at an I Spy, make an I Spy, buy a notebook, find something about I Spy for him, or go to the library to pick up yet another I Spy.

I will not even begin to explain his fervor of Can You See What I See, which is also by the same man.

Walter Wick, if you ever google your own name and this pops up, you owe me.



I don't cuss (or swear, use dirty language, etc.) because I think it is a sin. I have heard or read so many Christians cuss, I just don't understand it. Is it not a sin to them? Is it justified somehow? What is the deal? Is it just culturally acceptable?

I would love to hear input.

Not Too Impressive

I have not finished Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrel yet, because I took a detour for awhile with a book called Cold Comfort Farm------I am almost finished. I am not too impressed with it, I must say. At least so far. It is entertaining, but I think I expected more out of it. I don't think it is going to redeem itself in 30 pages.

I have so many books to read and only one life----it is frustrating.


Sounds like a word, huh?

One night my daughter (who is four) told me when she was somewhat frustrated and half joking that I was "dilibated". She even shook her head. She said, "Mom, you're so dilibated!" I still have no idea what it means to her, but my husband and I use it all the time. We always tell her how dilibated she is, etc. She's about had enough of us.


Jogger Blogger

I ran for the first time today in five months. I know, pretty pathetic. Once it gets past the two month time period, I think the only excuse is laziness. For me, at least. Five months ago I was up to 6-8 miles per run, but all I could muster today was about 2. I will explain this. Do you know how hilly Virginia is? Idaho is fairly flat. I will tell you, the hills kicked my butt. When my lungs can take it (this was my case today) my legs can't. And vice versa. As my husband would say it, I was "crawling". Twenty minutes of agonized crawling.

Air and Space

We went to Air and Space this weekend. I am usually interested in many things, but my daughter and I were just bored. I tried, really I did. Not only was it boring, but it was PACKED with people. That was so frustrating! It was so packed with people I was smelling bad breath the whole time. The boys loved it as much as they could have. They enjoyed everything, but wanted to sit down. There was barely ever a place. It just smelled and looked like a public school multi-purpose room. The thing is, we had heard so much about this museum---it was great, etc, etc. It really wasn't. I don't think it was any different from the little museums I ever went to when I was a kid. The only really cool thing that I liked was the Wright brothers exhibit. That was cool. I like the 1800's, so it figures. I can not wait to go to another art museum again!



I am supposed to go on a "date" with my other half tonight. I bet you it will be a night full of trying to figure out what to do!

This is the plight of the parents of young children. Plus, I am the most indecisive person I know by far. This makes for a night of frustration. I think though that I have a patient husband, so I am ok.

We so desperately wish to visit the second floor of the National Art Gallery. I spied some Van Gogh and Monet. Too bad it is not open tonight!

Perhaps we will visit Air and Space tomorrow with the kids.

Rain, rain, rain. A perfect night for me and my husband---we both love the rain. We scare ourselves.


Depths of Despair (Anne style)

My husband did not get this job that I was hoping he would get so I am really down today. I know, that is probably silly. I was really pumped about it.

So, to make myself feel better I was looking at my husband's blog and I clicked on the right hand corner to "next blog" just like a silly Christian would who wants to hear from God by closing their eyes and dropping open the Bible to read the encouragement there. The blog was a blog on knitting.

What does that mean?



I took my kids to a nice local park today and there were all sorts of park goodies: tire swings, regular swings, poles of all kinds, slides, bridges, etc. There was even a praying mantis on the overhead bar of one of the slides. My daughter spotted it and said, "The largest bug of your life is on this slide!" My youngest boy was amazed and stood there looking at it. I went over to touch it and study it and my oldest (who is ridiculously afraid of any bug---particularly mantises---he can hardly stomach looking at the one in his science book) yelped out that we were crazy to be so close to it. Finally I just picked up the thing with a toy gun and plopped it on some wood close to the trees. My daughter then felt free to resume slide playing.

Things got a little risky when I pushed my boys on the tire swing. They wanted to spin and spin and my oldest boy was nuts over it. My other boy was having a tough time. He was loving it but soon hated it because he kept saying that he was going to "barf." He eventually just sat on a bench looking white as a sheet until we had to leave. On the way home I wanted to go to the store to get some steaks since according to the weather forecast this will be one of the last of the warmer days before it really gets frigid. I want to grill. So, we stop over at the store and I am looking at steaks and my younger boy says, "Mom, I really feel like I am going to barf." He then puts his hand over his mouth and then I put my hand out to catch it all and of course it cascades all over my hands. Thankfully we were next to the restroom (Thank you God!) and I ran over there with my sick child and cleaned him up and proceeded to clean up the floor too. The pharmacy lady was like, "Ma'am, you don't need to clean that floor! We have mops to do that, you know!" She was talking to me in a patronizing way. It was annoying. I told her that I would prefer to clean up my own child's puke and she can feel free to mop it after that if she wants.

Then in the car my oldest asked if it were at all possible to "chuck down". I think he meant "down chuck".


Lye (Caustic Soda)

Yesterday I was on a quest for Sodium Hydroxide like the Holy Grail. Typically you find it next to the Draino in that section of the grocery store. Not yesterday. I have found it at the Sears Hardware but they did not have it. A really informed man (who watches a lot of tv specials) let me know that I need to be careful with that stuff because when I pour it down my sink and run water it will splash back in my face. I told him that I make soap with it, but he still insisted that I be careful when I pour it down my sink. I don't think the whole thing registered to him. Anyway, they did not have my lye there.
The kids and I went to Home Depot, Food Lion and Wal-mart hopping along singing "lye songs" and saying stuff like, "man, we only want to find some lye!" My oldest said in Home Depot that we should look in the "plumbing" section (mind you, he pronounced the "b" and I had to correct him). I need to make clear that I was not in the greatest of moods at this point in our hunt. I just wanted some lye, ok?
So, we went home defeated but I would not be! I called the Manassas grocery store to see if they had what their sister store did not have here in my town and behold! They did. I should have done that in the first place. Manassas has everything. People probably make soap in Manassas. Not snooty Fairfax. I ran down there with the kids and they each took a can of lye and we went to the check out.
I will not go on about our previous search for Sebastian Molding Mud! How frustrating!

And a Bowl Full of Mush

The other night we were pulling into the driveway and it was dark outside. My husband typically says, "Goodnight moon!" when the moon is big outside---for the kids. And he did. So my youngest says, "Goodnight Mr. Jesus!"


His Turn

The only thing I can think of off the top of my head where I have influenced the man of this house to be as "strange" as me (I am from California, give me a break) is sleeping with a pillow between my legs. I think my past influence in this was when I was a kid my best friend's mother (literally my "other mother") slept this way and I think we even had a conversation about it at some point. She told me that it was "comfortable". She stressed the further comfort of when you are hot, you can just stick the outside leg over the covers and then you are half hot, half cold which means you are perfectly conditioned. My husband thought I was a nut sleeping with the pillow between my legs for the first couple of years. He caught on though. It is supposed to give your back good balance, but we both still have horrible postures. Oh well. I really could go on about this subject forever---but let's just say that the man can not live without his pillow. The cool thing is that his spare pillow is inferior to mine. I get the good one because I thought of sleeping like that first.

Oh yes, I just thought of it. Music. I love Travis and Coldplay and have liked them since their debuts. The other half would act like he didn't like it at first. He would turn the music down when I would play it, shake his head---pretty much put up with it. Pretty soon I would be playing Rush of Blood to the Head and he would be turning it up or he would put the disc in himself. "Hmmm...," I thought. So, one bright winter day my greatest friend (L., who I miss) comes up to me and says, "Rach, are you having a bad day?" I said, "Well, not too bad, it is ok." She said, "I insist that you have a bad day! Tell me it is bad!" I said, "Well, ok, if you want me to have a bad day, sure, I'll have one." And then she tells me that she won two tickets to Coldplay (fourth row, mind you) by getting four James Taylor questions right on the radio. She always "wins stuff". This woman is incredible. She hears from her brother in law that Coldplay is coming to town,they are giving tickets away on the radio (and she doesn't even know who Coldplay is at this point, but KNOWS that I LOVE them) and so she listens intently every early morning to win the things for me. And she does. You know, because she always wins stuff. So we end up jumping up and down yelling fourth row at each other and Laura is purely excited because I am. She turned into a Coldplay fan when she won those tickets. Anyway, they were for us. She knew the other half did not care about them that much, so she was like, "It's you and me baby!"
I went home to tell Mr. Wilhelm. He got really quiet when I told him and sheepishly said, "Well, I wanna go."
To make an even longer story short, I bought he and my brother tickets and we lived happily ever after and went to the coolest concert of our lives.
But, the cool thing is that whenever Laura and I saw each other before the concert we would wave to the other with only four fingers. We would mouth "fourth row" and giggle. I would say that the fourth row is the best place to be.

I've Gone to the Dark Side

For years I have pestered my mid-western husband for putting "cream"(half & half) in his cold or hot cereal. I guess his whole family does it---I am not sure if it is a Minnesotan thing to do or if it is just a Wilhelm thing. I eat pretty low carb because of health reasons and so I try to stay away from drinking too much milk. I try to eat whole grain stuff instead of processed stuff (although I love all processed stuff). So, half and half is pretty whole, don't you think? I think so. It is somewhat low-carb, heck I want some flavor at this point, eh? So, you know, I am a believer. I LOVE it. Not just love it. I LOVE it. It is like turning health food into comfort food in one dip of the carton.

On another "dark side" note: I have hated popcorn my whole life. I can't explain why. My brother does too. I think, it is too salty, too buttery, just gross, because it sticks to my teeth. My sister in law got us this "Whirly Pop" for Christmas years ago and my husband adores the thing. You crank it and crank it over the stove and whalah! Out comes perfect popcorn that practically melts in your mouth. My husband has grown up with this stuff. I mean, it was a part of his daily life-style. Every night when the ten o'clock news would start his parents would tell him to make some popcorn because he was "the best at it." Yeah right. They ate this every night from what I hear. Who knows if it really was every night. Who cares. They ate it a lot. He used to make it, now guess who makes it. Yep. You guessed right. And why do I make it? You guessed it, because I am "the best at it." So, being the best, shouldn't I enjoy it at least a little? Yes, I do, regretfully. I rather liked being the one who did not like the popcorn and hated it. I was cooler then.



I have learned this week to hope in God, not in man. This life is but a breath (at times a meaningless one) and my hope should be set on the fact that I have a treasure in heaven and nothing will satisfy me on earth.
Don't you ever get that strange itch that wishes for something more exciting and you think going to England or going to Italy will fulfill it? C.S. Lewis says that those "itches" mean that we are meant for something else---something otherworldly. I believe it.



I think in parklife Damon Alburn talks about the "dustmen" waking him up (like my post yesterday). I thought that was funny. It is really hilarious that British people call garbage "dust." I learned that long ago when I read Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens (which is a splendid read, by the way). The main character lives next to a dust heap (I suppose a "dump") where the people then would gather and collect what they could salvage for an income. I suppose that is similar to our garage sale lovers. Sort of. All I know about the 1800's I know from the writers of the day (which may not be much). Cheeri--o.
Here is the site of one of my oldest friends: americanspark


The garbage men woke me up today.

I am tired.

I will really be tired later.

But I will drink coffee from my Wonder Woman cup and get into my invisible plane.


Chocolate Trees

Since moving from Idaho, there is not a day I don't think about my friend L. That spurs me to think of heaven and all the people that I am seperated from---my true family in Christ---all over the States. One of the delights of heaven will definitely be communing with my heavenly family with out sin!!! I look so forward to that. The fact that Jesus loves me and all of us as individuals brings me to my knees. Thank you, Lord, for all my friends that I will know forever! That thought right there makes me so euphoric. I miss L. now, but I will always know her and we can sit beneath my chocolate tree in heaven and eat to our fill without getting fat!


Purple Prancing Pony

My youngest child says that she wishes that she could be a "rainbow, unicorn, pegasus with magical powers." My husband said, "it is evident God created boys and girls to be different!" Then I remembered from the snippet I saw on "Napolean Dynamite" that Napolean was drawing a pegasus or some sort of mystical horse on his notebook. My husband refuses to see this movie just because everyone likes it and talks about it. This is the same with Titanic. I have never seen that movie either (not that I really want to). But, you know, same reasons. Everyone loves it, thinks it is great, and so we protest in our quiet way. Anyway, I am off the point like I so often do and it drives my husband crazy. I knew a guy like Napolean in High School. I mean, he wasn't really quirky like that, but he was just a little quiet, smart, smelly, and he wore horse shirts. So, sorry Wilhelm, some guys like horses---probably even mystical ones.


This is my niece's blog. She is hilarious. The Blog of Alisa


The Goal of Every Woman

I have run across so many friends that struggle as women with their identity and what they are to do with their lives. They struggle with who they are, what they are to do, and where they are to go. I have been there so many times and I tend to go there more than I should. I think, "what do I offer this world?" "What does God want me to do?" Everyone struggles with this stuff, but when you are a mother of young children or unmarried and waiting for that spouse, or just waiting for something different these questions crop up. I have put myself in the position where I thought that I had everything covered and I was doing everything in my power to get all of my chaos at a controllable level. I know we must all be content, all of us know that. The thought that came to my mind in this was the answer to "what am I to DO, Lord?"
What better thing is there than to be "precious in the sight of God"? I knew then that I should take 1 Peter 3:4 seriously when it says, "but let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the imperishable quality of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is precious in the sight of God."
I challenge all of my fellow women who read this to quit listening to the lie of the world that we are to be "something" to be worthy or to be a real individual. Whether we are mothers or single women with careers or no careers---that is where we are in life---God has placed us there. All the rest falls into place when we pursue God.


Johnathan Strange and Mr. Norrell

I brought this book with me to my little mini vacation on Chincoteague Island this past weekend and I could only allow myself about an hour of the whole time to read it. I mean, I guess I could have read it in the car on the way there (it lamely took us eight hours when "the other way" would have only taken us 4) but I get sick if I don't look out the window. I have raised my children to read books in the car so that they do not suffer this plight. Am I the only one?

Still on the book thing: I wanted to read the book but would not let myself. This is odd. I feel like books are mini vacations themselves. It is not really sensible for me to have a vacation from my vacation. It is a bit redundant. If I sat there and read a book the whole time I was on the beach I would not enjoy the beach! I would enjoy the book! Again, am I the only one?

So do you know what I did while my husband sat and read Folk on the Fringe to his utter delight? I made big holes in the sand and sweat myself silly like a kid. I think my oldest and I made two of the biggest holes in the sand that beach saw that week. I'd remember that more than I would remember a book.


Hats off to Noel Gallagher

Just went to the Oasis concert Thursday night. I was impressed with them, but Liam made me really tense! Of course in the usual Liam style he acted as if he did not want to be there and did stupid things. I could hardly bear when he began a song and then yelled at a roadie because he did not start singing at the right time and then began again (at least he did that). I think he was mad because he could not get his voice out the way he wanted. He did not whine so much in the usual fashion---at the end of phrases he would trail his voice off like he could care less. It was almost comical, but his body language said, "you stupid people." He would try to sing some note and couldn't hit it so he would cuss into the mic. It reminded me of a spoiled brat throwing a fit in a store or something. I have seen adults throw fits. The best way to describe the feeling of the onlooker is "embarrassed". At one point he said something before a song that said "will" or "wall" or something---who could understand that guy? How could he expect us to understand him? His accent is so thick it is like he is speaking a different language. I heard him yell, "You don't even appreciate it!!!" or at least that is what I thought I heard him yell. I was right because everyone went mad when "Wonderwall" started playing---no one could understand that he was introducing the song---the nit wit---if he would stop and realize that he is in America and we never hear thick Manchester accents on a regular basis. Everyone started singing with him and he threw a fit about that. He gave up in the middle of the song, said, "you sing it, you don't need me!" or something of that nature and walked off all "mad" to the other end of the stage. All the band members just stood there and acted like it was all normal. I kept looking at my husband and he just laughed and said that this is totally normal and he is actually being nicer than usual. How do you put up with this absurd man, Noel? To me, if they did not have Noel Gallagher, the whole band would be lost (of course). Noel's voice is better anyway.
My mom would always say "Poor Chuck" whenever Chuck Woolery would blush with embarrassment at a person mentioning unmentionables on his dating show (if anyone remembers it you have a good memory). In the same way I say, "Poor Noel"!