Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Hiding in the Jeep

When I was a kid, my dad used to bribe us with Yoohoos to run errands with him. I think Yoohoos are gross now, but when I was a kid, I loved them.

One such time, I went to the gas station with my dad to get milk and Yoohoos, and I waited in my dad's old Jeep Comanche while he got the goods. As I waited, a grand idea popped into my head. It would be really funny to hide behind the bench seat, and jump out when my dad got back to the car.

Oh, kids. They're so funny.

I pulled the lever to get the seat forward and climbed behind it, squishing my body among the jumper cables and bungee cords. Not much space, but with my left arm, I managed to pull the seat back to it's orginial position. It clicked.

I couldn't move.

I was pinched in. My neck was stuck awkwardly allowing me to peer over the edge of the seat. My left arm hung lifeless over the back of the seat, and my plans of jumping out to scare my dad were foiled. I humbly waited for his return.

As I watched him unlock his door, I saw something that I had never before seen in an adult.

A look of confusion and sheer panic washed across his face. The Jeep was empty. I was gone, possibly kidnapped from the car.

I was overwhelmed with shame for causing this emotional turmoil in my dad. I frantically waved my left arm, getting his attention. All this happened in a matter of seconds, but it impacted me for life. I never want to make anyone feel that kind of horror again.

The whole thing ended in laughter, seeing as I was uncomfortably squished behind a seat by my own volition. He drove me home that way. Just kidding. He let me out first.

Monday, May 30, 2011

The Host

Stephenie Meyer is obviously famous for her Twilight series, but shortly after Breaking Dawn was published, she took a different route with a sci-fi novel called The Host.

It's the story of alien body-snatchers who take over planet Earth. One alien, named Wanderer inhabits a young woman's body. The only problem is that the woman, Melanie, won't give her body up without a fight. They mentally compete for the body, Melanie's constantly interrupting and changing the character of Wanderer.

It's fantastically done, too.

One of my favorite aspects of Stephenie Meyer's writing is her ability to make fiction become reality. I'd never been so convinced of the normalcy of vampires and werewolves as I had been when reading Twilight. Likewise, aliens travelling through the universe seems as normal as Sunday afternoon football when Stephenie Meyer writes it.

Plus, that whole post-apocalyptic theme is popular these days.

I like Steph Meyer. She's creative, sweet, and emotional. I think I connect with her as a writer on that level. I'm super in-touch with my emotions, so connecting with her emotional characters is just natural.

Meyer doesn't have anything on her website about upcoming projects, but I heard a rumor about a mermaid series. In September 2009, she posted about The Host movie in pre-production. Obviously that hasn't happened.

If it were me, I'd wait to introduce new projects when the Twilight hullabaloo dies down. Until then, check out The Host. It's fun, fantastical and different. No vampires. (But I'm still team Edward.)

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Please Tell Me

Five things I want people to tell me if they see:

1. A booger hanging from my nose.
2. An eyelash chilling on my cheek.
3. A bug crawling around on my face.
4. A nasty chunk of something in my teeth.
5. An unruly section of eyebrow that has separated from the rest of the brow.

Please, for the sake of my vanity, tell me these things!

I'd rather be embarassed for a second, then see it at the end of the day and wonder how many people did NOT tell me about it, but just stared instead. I understand. I've been guilty of the stare-without-share before. But let's just agree to end that nonsense right now.


Saturday, May 28, 2011

10 Things about Rufio

1. He doesn't like fruit. I've tried giving him blueberries, grapes, strawberries, apples and watermelon. He will gladly accept fruit and play with it for a while, but never eat it. I have to pick it up and throw it away later. He does like meat, cheese and bread.

2. He chases squirrels.

3. He finally lifted his leg for the first time whilst peeing the other day (he's 15 months old). He did it once, but reverted to his old ways and hasn't lifted it since.

4. There's one part of our walk, where he once found an unwrapped Slim Jim. I didn't let him eat it, but ever since that day, he always spends extra time sniffing the area for more Slim Jims.

5. He likes to stick his head out the car window at all times.

6. Our neighbors have two black cats that Rufio has come to ignore, but upon meeting them for the first time, he got dangerously close to getting his nose scratched. The cats hissed and arched their backs, and Rufio just lunged in and out, trying to get them to play. Finally I pulled him away, as I feared for his life and mine.

7. He still lies in his hammock, but he scratched it up so much that it's more of a fort now than a hammock.
8. He crawls on the back of the couch like a cat.

9. He started nipping at my ankles when I get home from work. I think it's because he's excited and not because he's herding me. I'm breaking him of it.

10. Sometimes during our walks, he trots along so quickly that I let go of the leash to see how far he'll walk before noticing I'm not behind him. He usually does a double-take after a minute and stares at me as if saying, "Why are you just standing there?" Then I laugh at him, because the joke's always on him. Not me. Ever.

Friday, May 27, 2011

Tipping the Scales

Recently my conversations about acting have gone something like this:

Nice person (NP): "When is your next play?"
Me: "Oh, I'm actually doing film acting, so it's just based on when I get cast for films."
NP: "What kind of films?"
Me: "Mostly student films and independent stuff."
NP: "Do you get paid?"
Me: "No. That's my goal though. I don't want it to just be an expensive hobby."

Readers, let it be known: the scale is tipping.

(That's the scale of expense and income, which was heavy on the expense side.)

Sunday night I got a call from a friend who's in an independent, short film where the lead female had to drop due to schedule conflicts. My friend suggested me to the director. Two days and a ton of emails later, I auditioned and was cast. Yay for networking!

AND it comes with a paycheck! Woot! It's not a Hollywood-size amount, but I'm also not SAG or famous or you know, worth of that kind of pay. However, it's more than enough to cover my gas costs, so we're talking, minor profit (not minor prophet! Get it? Hosea?...heh...Bible joke).

I would have done it without pay, but money is just icing on the cake.

I'm super excited about this film. It's the true story of a young man's battle with cancer. It is a beautiful script. I cried while reading it, but that's no surprise. I'm a crier.

Bottom line: I'm seriously thrilled.

For now, the scale is still heavy on expense, but there's a light at the end of the tunnel and it's growing, and it'll be an oak tree some day. So, follow your heart and look both ways before crossing the street.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Goliath Bones

We went to Sams the other day to get some essentials. Our membership is almost up, and we wanted to stock up, before we let it run out. We needed dog treats, but they only came in one size:

"No problem," we said. "We'll just break them up."

When we go thome, I opened the box and this found about 500 bones like this:

You may think, "That's not that big." But we usually give Rufio bones the size of my pinky finger. He eats one every day when I put him outside before going to work. I've chopped up a bunch of these big bob marley's into quarters. 

Moral of the story: when the box says "Large," believe the box.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Celebrating Great Men

Saturday, after my first day of filming in the 95 degree Florida heat, I went to Zane's company end-of-semester celebration dinner. I drove straight from film set to dinner. So along the way, I ran into a Target bathroom to wash my face, put on make up and do my hair, because I had been a sweaty mess earlier that day. Life is fun when it's busy.

The event was at this beautiful house on a lake.

I got to see my hubsy get promoted! His boss read a list of wonderful things that Zane's coworkers have said about him, then announced his name. The whole room cheered and chanted his name. It was more than enough to make this wife extremely proud. I feel so blessed for us to be a part of such an uplifting group.

Matt and Zane in what seems like a dust storm.

The evening continued like that, with cheers and encouraging stories about each of the men on the team. I shed several tears and thanked the Lord for what He's doing through these great men.

I'm also very grateful for the other wives. During Zane's first year with Booster, I was the only wife! Now a year later, there are five of us (and counting)! These are such sweet women that I've been able to get to know, laugh with and comiserate with over the last few months. Such a blessing.

Lovely ladies! Can't wait for the single men to add to our numbers.  

Team Orlando!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Horror[ible] Make-Up

This weekend, I was shooting in Palm Coast. Here's a little photo evidence.
The cast. Yep, all women.

In character.
The last day, I was getting my make-up done and...
...I asked if he could cover up that blemish on my forehead. Sooooo not flattering, even for a nerd.

I think he got carried away.

Be careful what you ask for!!!

The make-up smelled so nasty that I was nauseated the rest of the day. I washed most of it off in the sink on location, but the smell lingered until I took a shower at home.


But acting is always fun!

Monday, May 23, 2011


It's Monday, and it's time for a book review.

I've already talked about Austenland several times, but  it's time for an official review by Deborah.

It's the story of a thirty-something single woman who has obsessed for years over Pride and Prejudice, especially the BBC movie version starring Colin Firth. Her great-aunt dies, leaving her an all-expense paid vacation to a resort in England.

Upon her arrival, she steps into her own Jane Austen novel. The resort is designed to be just like Regency-era England, including dress, food and gentlemen!

Shannon Hale is a quirky writer, and I absolutely love her style. I read this book in one day, because I couldn't put it down. Sadly, I didn't get anything else accomplished that day, but that's okay!

Readers are leaders! Or something.

So, go read this book!

After you read it, you'll be pleased to discover (though you are discovering it right now) that there is a sequel in the making! January 2012 is the tentative release date.

Finally, I will say this about Shannon Hale. I've enjoyed all her books, and I've read five of the nine published. That's a good enough sample to know I love her writing.

I trust her as an author.

It's nice to find an author whose work you enjoy reading. Wait, I'm having deja vu. There are just so many good authors out there!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Nerd Alert!

I know, you're expecting another picture from my middle school days. I was such a looker.

But instead, I'm going to share with you my costume for my upcoming film shoot this weekend. It's a no-budget film, so we're responsible for our own costumes. *eye wiggle* I'm playing the nice smarty-pants, who doesn't get out much.

I'm excited because I've got an intense scene that's comparable to the transformation scene in American Werewolf in London. Look it up on that popular video-sharing website. I have a feeling that the special effects in this film will be similar, but not quite as advanced as that one. Retro-style.

Maybe you'll see it someday.

The producer wants to submit it in festivals...and carnivals!

(thirty points)

Thursday, May 19, 2011

He Caved

Zane traveled three weeks in a row (minus weekends) last month. It was gruelling. Last Sunday was our first afternoon to just hang out, and guess what we did?

We bought the New Super Mario Brothers game!

Zane had a popular electronics store gift card (Best...something?), so we basically got it half-off. It was nice of him to buy that game for me. I mean, us. That's a good thing about marriage - you share gift cards! I let him have my popular music store gift card (aTunes. No, eTunes. Whatever, I can't remember), so we're even. Not that you compete in marriage or measure who gives more to whom. Zane would always win.

Anyways, the New Super Mario Bros.! I know, you're probably thinking, "What about finishing Wind Waker?" Good question. We haven't finished it, but we will. Someday. Maybe. Probably.

Who cares?! It's all New Super Mario Bros. now!

We've had so much fun. It's actually really hard to play two players in the same game. We get in each other's way a lot.

I've died several times, so many times that I have six continues, and we're only on world three. But I just laugh. It's part of growing up as a non-gamer. I don't expect to get through Mario without dying. I'm happy if I get to the end, and if I'm wearing a penguin suit, then I'm thrilled.

Of course, who wouldn't be thrilled to be wearing a penguin suit?

It's nice to have Zane back home, so we can spend some quality time killing gumbas. It's also just nice to have him back home.

Snow Bunny

You know how some women look like hot babes when skiing in the freezing cold, wet snow?
Breckenridge, CO, 1999. Check out this hotness:

You would think it'd be difficult to accomplish that level of attractiveness, but it's not that hard.
This Florida girl knows.
I'm so hot, I'm melting the snow.
98.6 degrees, baby!

The gentlemen will be all up ons.
(twenty billion points)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

I Found a Toilet Portal

 Saw this when I was draining my bladder before my callback last night:
UCF Communications building, women's restroom, second stall from the entrance.
If you need to get to the Ministry of Magic, use this one.
It'll just take you a long time to get back to Orlando from London, or wherever you exit the ministry.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


This is my 200th post.

200 minutes ago: Today at 12:40 p.m., I was at work, thinking about my callback tonight.

200 hours ago: May 9, 2011, 8:00 a.m., I was walking Rufio and dreaming of exotic destinations.

200 days ago: October 30, 2010, I was in Georgia, picking cotton.

200 months ago: September 17, 1995, I was home from school (fourth grade, where I had probably been reading The Lion's Paw by Robb White) enjoying my carefree afternoon at the house on Glastonberry Road, from which my family moved the next summer.

200 years ago: May 17, 1811, Paraguay became an independent nation. This is not directly relevant to me.

200 posts ago: May 20, 2009, almost two years ago, I wrote this first post.

In honor of my 200th post, how about you go ahead and follow me! In return, I'll tell you about this lovely photo:

This picture was taken approximately 167 months ago in the summer of 1998, before braces, before eyebrow management, before digital cameras. It was also right before our family went on a cruise to celebrate my grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary.

No, those aren't natural curls. I slept in 200 perm curlers the night before. Not really 200, I just wanted to use that number again.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Once Upon a Marigold

I recently began a new method of choosing books from the library. Goodreads has been helpful, but sometimes the library doesn't have what my friends have recommended. When that happens, I go to the young adult section and scan the shelves for books have have more than four copies.

If it was well-liked enough for the county to invest in so many copies, then it's probably a good book.

Last week I used my method and came across Once Upon a Marigold by Jean Ferris. Surefire method, people. This book was a HIT! I could have read it in one day, because it was so lovely.

It was easy-to-read, without moronic writing. The characters were cute and loveable. The story was the right combination of orginial and predictable, and it was funny. The author has a light and humerous style to her narration, which I thought was really great and even warranted some audible laughs, which scared Rufio.

I recommend this book! It was probably originally written as juvenile fiction and ended up on the YA shelf. That's okay!

To make it even better, I found the sequel when I was searching for an image of the Once Upon a Marigold's cover. Something else to put on my reading list!

It's nice to find an author whose work you enjoy reading. There's a sense of safety in checking out or purchasing one of their books. You know you're going to like it. At least, you hope you know.

Go therefore and read these lovely fairy tales!

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Brush with Fame

Everyone has their celebrity encounter story, right? Just say yes.

Well, mine's with Peter Noone!

You know, the guy from Herman's Hermits? They sing "Mrs. Brown, you've got a lovely daughter..." 

I mean, my story barely counts as a brush with fame, since I went to his concert with a friend at the Epcot Flower and Garden Festival. The part that makes it a true celebrity encounter is that he noticed my friend and me, who were 14 years old, singing along and thought it was peculiar that we youngsters knew his songs.  

In the middle of the concert, he walked off the stage into the crowd to our row and asked us how we knew his song lyrics, being that we were a little too young to know Herman's Hermits in the peak of their career.

My answer, "My parents raised me on oldies."

Old people love being called old. Try it sometime. They'll take it really seriously and never crack jokes about being dinosaurs or old fogeys. Trust me. Don't trust me.  

1. I've always been that tall.
 2. Don't ask about the scrunchie.

Okay, I want to hear your fame stories now. Who have you met? Even if it was after their concert, I want to know. 

Friday, May 13, 2011

New Genre: Horror-Comedy

I don't know how new it is, but I'm becoming familiar with a genre called horror-comedy, or comedic horror. Apparently Jennifer's Body was under this genre. I recently auditioned for a film called Nazi Bear in Space, which I'm almost certain was of this genre.

The following photo is also of the horror-comedy genre:
(Insert dramatic groundhog/gopher/prairie dog/chipmunk music here.)

(Shrill scream.)

Yes, I once had weird bangs. They did what they wanted. I couldn't discipline them at all.

Oh, yeah, I also played basketball on the school team one season. Eighth grade. It was horrific. (NOT terrific.) I scored four points the entire season. I never wore a sports bra, because I didn't need to, because I spent most my time on the bench, therefore (1) not sweating and (2) not jiggling. TMI? Sorry.

It was the most humiliating time of my life.

The only reason I played was because my friend who was a basketball star, destined to be in the WNBA (if it's even still around...see, I'm not into sports) convinced me that it would be fun.


Not fun. I hate running, and I have no hand-eye coordination skills. Yet, for the next few years of my life I still attempted about every sport until I eventually realized, "I prefer the arts."

Anyways, I just wanted to share this treasure of a picture and the relief that I now feel with the self-confidence to deny joining in on that pick up game of whatever sport. If it involves throwing, catching, kicking, running, or other forms of athletic skill, I'm out. Out...damned spot! (30 points there.)

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Please By My Friend

Hi, I'm thirteen year-old Deborah.
I wear headgear and take pictures of myself with my stuffed animals.

Will you be my friend?

Sorry, my knees are in the foreground. I'm still working on my disposable camera skills.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

The Mudding Incident

AP US History. I remember it like it was a 10 years ago. Not my favorite subject, but I took it in eleventh grade because that's what Knapps do. They take advanced placement classes. (My maiden name is Knapp, for all those confused readers.) Side note: our AP teacher assigned more reading and writing homework than any college class I ever took. That's not an exaggeration.

Near the end of the year, probably April-ish, we had the opportunity to take a practice exam. However, being the super-involved-in-extra-curricular-activity-students that we were, Sunday afternoon was the only time we could all gather together for the test.

Keep that information in mind.

My dear friend, Michelle, used to drive a beat-up old GMC Jimmy. I thought it was awesome, because she had her own car. It wasn't awesome that the spedometor was broken and the seat didn't adjust. Whenever I drove it, my tippy toes barely touched the accelerator, and I had to gauge my speed by how fast other drivers were driving. Not that I drove it that often. Just sometimes. Thanks, Michelle, for letting me feel a little of what it was like to have your own car in eleventh grade.

Enter "mudding."

The Friday before said practice-test Sunday, our other friends (I'll call them B&B in case they desire anonymity) took Michelle's Jimmy down a dirt road near our school. The dirt road led to a small creek, where they enjoyed mudding through the river at ill-advised speeds, not that they would know how fast they were going anyways.

Practice-exam Sunday after we finished our test, B convinced us that it would be AWESOME to go mudding again. Michelle didn't want anything to do with it, but she let B take the rest of us naive AP History students down the dirt road.

We trust B. He is smart. Genius-status smart. I'd still trust him today.

We bumped along the dirt road with high school glee that we might be breaking the law driving on a [possibly, but probably not] private road. No seat belts necessary when you're going mudding. We soon found the creek. B plowed straight in and told us that they drove down the river on Friday. We told him, "Go for it!" We were so adventurous, we AP History students, takin' risks and takin' names.

Then the Jimmy sunk. It wouldn't go forward. I wouldn't back out.

Water started seeping through the doors, filling up Michelle's rather messy Jimmy floor. I frantically picked up her papers, cd player and other miscellaneous possessions that were about to be drowned in icky river water. "What are a bunch of AP students doing in a river on a Sunday afternoon anyways?" I was wondering at the moment.

We climbed out the windows and waded to the edge.

In typical Florida fashion, it had monsooned over the weekend. The creek that was fun to drive in on Friday, had become a trap of doom on Sunday. The Jimmy had sunk into a rotting bed of leaves and was not capable of emerging on its own, even with 4WD. Sad day.

The following ensued:
  • I left the scene, not interested in getting in trouble (I now see a pattern in my evasive behavior).
  • Friendly Jeep drivers came across B and Jimmy and offer to pull him out.
  • Jeep got stuck.
  • Friendly four-wheeler drivers pulled Jeep out.
  • Michelle called her dad.
  • Michelle's dad and uncle came with a freakin' big ranching truck and pulled the Jimmy out by forcefully tugging on it a number of times.
  • B detailed the flooded Jimmy and left it looking like a new car, except for the whole spedometer and seat adjustment stuff. I remember it smelling of coconut. So pleasant.

The next week at school we shared the story of our AP adventure in the Jimmy, including diagrams drawn by B to show exactly how the Jimmy fell into a bed of leaves. Life is full of adventures, great and small, even for AP students.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Dreams of Travel

I had a bad dream last night, so today, to clear my mind, I looked up travel destinations. Zane and I took a massive vacation last year, and I'm pretty nostalgic about it today.

Zane's going to Vegas this summer for his brother's bachelor party. I'm so jealous. I've never been there but really want to go. My consolation prize is a trip to NYC with my mom and sister. Pretty nice. We're still planning it, but tentatively we're going for three or four days in July.

Onto hopes and dreams of travel. I want to go everywhere. That's implied. But as far as planning out places to prioritize in my few years on earth, here are my desired international destinations:
Europe - any combination of countries in any number of trips
South Africa
New Zealand
South Pacific Islands

I'm interested in South America too. I hear there are trips from Argentina to Antarctica. *eyebrow wiggle* Feeling adventurous?

As for the United States, I've already hit most states, thanks to my travelling parents who took me on several sweet summer vacations as a child. But there are a few things I haven't seen or want to return to soon:
Los Angeles
Napa Valley
Mount Rushmore
Parthenon Replica
Where do you guys plan to travel? I'm looking for ideas for FL/GA weekend trips for the nearer future, when we don't have the funds or time to do long, extravagant vacations. Don't give me St. Augustine or Savannah. We need fresh ideas!

P.S. Follow Me.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Chocolate Peanut Butter Bundt!

In case anyone is wondering how Mother's Day went for me, it was okay. Church was the more difficult part of the day. I was late...so that I could miss the baby dedications and gifting of roses to mothers. Then I hid from people after the service when Zane was tearing down (don't judge me!) because I didn't really want to small talk or receive any pity--er, I mean sympathy.

Of course, the *real* reason I was late to church was that I just *had* to finish this cake for my sister's birthday today!

First off, this is not from scratch. It's an add-to-the-box-mix recipe. I still love cooking from scratch, but ever since my hand mixer broke, it's not very appealing to me. I'd like a Kitchen Aid mixer please. Thanks.

This recipe called for peanut butter chips. I bought them yesterday in the middle of errands and forgot that they can MELT in the HEAT! When I got home, I tossed them in the fridge, and Zane and I chopped them up.
They're peanut butter chunks now.  

Short cut through the baking. You can just follow the recipe found in Bundt Cake Bliss, the best recipe book I've ever received! (Thanks, Vicky!)

I used my regular bundt pan, because I knew I was going to be doing this:

I sliced it in half for a frosting sandwich!

While we're on the subject of frosting. Let's talk about solving problems mid-baking. See, this recipe called for half and half. Mine was expired. Gross. My Better Homes and Gardens Cookbook said I could use butter and whole milk as a substitute. So I used butter and 2%. Yeah, I'm a rebel.

Then I had to mix this by hand.

It's freakin' hard to get clumps out with a wooden spoon, so I whisked it and channelled my inner pioneer woman (not the blogger, the actual women of old) and mixed the sucker until it looked like so:
Beautiful. So tasty too!

I forgot to get pictures of frosting the interior and flipping the top half back and frosting the exerior. But I do have this picture of what it looked like when I finished. You can imagine the rest.
It smells amazing too, by the way. It kind of looks like mustard frosting, but it's actually peanut butter.

Here's a shot of the inside:

We had a fun time with the family. We played Beyond Balderdash, in which I cleaned house! Here's an example of my creative genius for giving the movie description of "The Night Has Eyes": CIA agent, Carson Ericks takes one last job before retirement. After a chance encounter with Russian beauty, Irena Volksovich, Carson's last job becomes a mission of survival.

Yeah, I'm that good. No one voted for my anwser. It had "Deborah" written all over it. Oh well. I fooled them during other rounds, which secured my win. Did I mention I rock at Balderdash? Yeah, I'm the bomb.com.

But enough about me.

After games, we had a lovely Mother's day/birthday dinner and opening of cards and gifts. We even skyped with my sister, who lives on the other side of the world in a large country, one with a huge population.

Then we played Ticket to Ride, the German version, which I just learned this weekend. So fun. Everyone should play that game.

Great day, great people, great games, great food.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Non-mother's Day

A few friends on facebook have been sharing this article from the gospel coalition this week. I scanned through it thinking, "blah, blah, blah, yadda, yadda, yadda." Until I read this phrase:

"Motherhood is not the greatest good for the Christian woman."

Then I thought, "Oh, I like this woman." She proves that has the experience to write this kind of truth. She confirms how Mother's Day is hard for so many women in the world: the single, infertile, those who have miscarried or lost children, etc. She also writes about how God uses our longings to make us more Christ-like.

Read it. It's good.

I don't anticipate Mother's Day being too overwhelmingly difficult this year. Last year I was super late getting my period, so I was super hopeful that maybe I was celebrating my first Mother's day. Nope, just a weird cycle. A few weeks later it was just disappointment, which spearheaded me into many months of irrational attitudes toward suffering. Mother's day itself wasn't bad, but the subsequent months were rotten.

*sing-song voice*Anyways...

This year will be good. Church might be hard, but sometimes I surprise myself with a lighthearted attitude. I'm praying for lightheartedness this Sunday as I watch my two bff's dedicate their kids to the Lord on Mother's Day. Share the joy, don't steal it! (I'm telling myself that.)

After church will be fun. It's all about celebrating my mom, grandma and aunt - and SISTER! Not because she's a mom (don't start any preemptive prenatal congratulations), but because it's her birthday!

Yep, she was born on Mother's Day, and this year the stars a have aligned - or at least the calendar dates - for her birthday and Mother's day to fall on the same Sunday.

I asked my mom to do a reinactment. She said no. Go figure.

Happy Mother's Day everyone!

P.S. Follow Me.

Update: Wanna know how my Mother's Day went? Check it out here.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Tribute to my Chacos

My chacos are so very fun.
I've worn them for a year.
My doggie tried to chew this one.
I kicked him in the rear.

(Not really. I didn't kick him. But really, he tried to eat my shoes. Again.)

I wore them in the southern rim
They made me feel so cool.
I took some risks, stood near the edge.
Please don't consider me a fool.

I wore them in the northern rim.
They got all red with dirt.
I wore them when I hiked within.
Not once did my feet hurt.

I wore them in the narrows trail
The dirt was washed away.
They helped me walk upon the rocks
And enjoy that glorious day!

I love my chacos through and through.
I wear them rain or sun.
They're good for walking, hiking, stalking
And shooting a something-gauge shotgun.
Don't I look like I know what I'm doing?

Who gave that girl a gun?! And check out her sweet chacos!

P.S. Remember to follow me!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Boy's Gone, Where's the Man?

I think there's an incredibly tangible and obvious line for when a child becomes an adult. It's not the first alcoholic drink, loss of virginity, or onslaught of puberty. It's in the attitude. It's when a child starts to realize that his/her parents are people too, that they have needs, that they don't soley exist to meet the needs of their children.

This can happen too early in life. Kids can grow up too fast from many different experiences, including taking care of their parents. There's a scene that is a good example of this in Finding Neverland, where James Berrie (Johnny Depp) and George Llewelyn Davies, the oldest of the Davies boys, have this conversation in the theater:

George: Mother asked me to take the boys out for the afternoon. She said she only wanted a bit of quiet, but she was trembling so badly she couldn't even finish her tea. I'm not a fool, Uncle James. I deserve to know the truth.

James: I don't know the truth. She won't talk about it.

George: But you think it's serious?

James: It could be. The doctor felt she should go and have some tests.

George: Then you'll have to convince her to go then.

James: I've tried. She won't listen to me. And lately, to be quite honest, it seems that all my best intentions for your family have come to nothing but harm. Apparently I've made quite a mess of things.

George: It's Grandmother, isn't it? She's run you off, hasn't she?

James: Oh, she's absolutely tried with great effort. And perhaps with good reason.

George: It isn't you, Uncle Jim. She just... She just doesn't want to see Mother hurt anymore.

James: Look at that. How magnificent. The boy's gone. Somewhere during the last seconds,you've become a grown-up.

George grew up when he saw his mother as a person with needs and stepped in to help her.

Growing up too fast is sad, but it's also sad when people grow up too slowly. In our culture, there are many cases of kids selfishly relying on their parents into adulthood, without any thought to their parent's needs. 

Parents can spend twenty-something years bending over backwards for their kids. Devotion to a child from a parent is expected, but the breakdown occurs when the adult kid turns a selfish eye and refuses to show gratitude, respect, or even help in some cases.

Ultimately, every kid must become an adult. When delayed, immaturity is made obvious.

Mother's Day is Sunday, followed by Father's day next month. If you haven't told your parents how much you appreciate their sacrifices for you, do it! Let them know you see that they're people too. They have needs for friendship, health, appreciation, etc. especially from their kids!

Stepping off the soap box now. Thanks for listening.

Note: Parents aren't perfect. I'm not saying that kids have to ignore their parents' faults. Also, this excludes abusive parents. That's a whole different, extremely sad situation.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Giving Glory

I painted this in 2005 shortly after a break up. I was desperate for my life to reflect God's glory. I have always found a catharsis in painting, so I went to it! I found a short, God-glorifying verse and worked around that. A month later, I bounced back into life, rarely looking back at the pain that motivated this piece of art.

Little did I know that six years later, this painting would take on a new meaning.

The verse is John 12:28. The passage surrounding it describes Jesus' prayer a few days before he was crucified. He says this starting in John 23:

"The hour has come for the Son of Man to be glorified. I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. The man who loves his life will lose it, while he who hates his life in this world will keep it for eternal life. Whoever serves me must follow me; and where I am, my servant also will be. My Father will honor the one who serves me.

"Now my heart is troubled, and what shall I say? 'Father, save me from this hour'? No, it was for this very reason I came to this hour. Father, glorify your name!"

Here's the skinny on these verses - Jesus knows what He's about to go through. It's betrayal, torture, death by suffocation in a humiliating way on the cross. He knows all this, and He's not too excited about it, but He submits to God's will knowing that He must die so that we can live. Pretty heavy.

How does that affect my painting?

I was sitting in church listening to a sermon on this, and it hit me. I hate what I'm going through. I don't like infertility. It's pretty bad. But what shall I say, "Father, save me from this hour?" I have been saying that, a lot. I need to be saying, "Father, glorify your name!"

Maybe it is for this hour that I have come. I believe that God purposed for me to go through this trial, and I believe it's for my good and [hopefully] the good of those around me.

It's a tiny analogy - Jesus' death on the cross and my infertility - but it's profound to me.

I painted that six years ago, not knowing what trials were ahead. I certainly never planned this one. But God knew. He's been preparing me for it, and working in my heart through it. Six months ago, I would not have been able to say, "Father, glorify your name," without the caveat, "by giving me children."

I can say it now. I can say it without a caveat. I believe He has a plan, that may actually be better in the long run if I don't have kids right now (which is good, because I don't have them right now).

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Follow Me....

...to the ends of the earth!

Just kidding. I don't really want you to follow me to the ends of the earth.

I do, however, want you to become a follower on my blog if you aren't already. If you're following through RSS, Facebook, or Networked Blogs, thanks! Small request: can you follow on blogger too?! It's easy if you already have a gmail account - just click "Follow" on the left sidebar thing.

Thanks, guys.

When I was in high school, my BFF Alyssa and I made lots of movies. They were stellar. Seriously. Not really.

One of them was based on Dracula (you know, the bad vampire before good vampires existed?). Alyssa played the role of high school-aged, female Dracula. In one scene she stood infront of the light switch, flicked it a few times behind her back, said, "Follow meeeeeee!" in a high-pitched voice, then walked off frame.

We had to do a bazillion takes, because neither of us could help cracking up when she said, "Follow meeeee!"

We thought we were funny.

I still think we're funny.

I'm fairly certain we were the only people who thought this way at the time. Hopefully they've come around by now.

All that to say, if you can, imagine me flicking the lights in your house. Great. Now imagine my voice in a high pitched tone saying, "Follow meeee!"

Perfect. Now, please obey. With regards to the blog. If you want. No pressure. Just sayin'. Cheers!

My Ideal Mate

I've been on a kick this week reading through my old journals from school. Today I'm going to share with you an entry in response to this prompt: my ideal mate. This was written when I was a senior in high school, about a year before I met Zane:

"He's a strong Christian, who loves God, and that love reflects and pours out into every aspet of his life.

He will be physically attractive as well.

He will have a good work ethic and be likeable to more people than just me.

He'll care about what I care about, even if it is only because I care about it.

He'll be honest: tell me all good and bad things on his mind.

He'll have the same goals as I do for our family and life together.

He'll be able to relate to my struggles, and I to his.

He will lead me and our family closer to Christ and each other.

He'll provide financially and emotionally for us.

He'll love me for all of me.

He'll get along great with my family, and I with his.

But most of all he'll be willing to lay his life down for me and our children.

He'll be my provider, protector, leader, lover, and best friend.

After he has met all internal qualifications, he will be attractive and rich."

My seventeen year-old self hit the nail on the head (as long as "rich" is a relative term). Zane is all these things and more. In fact, here's a list of great things about him that I compiled recently. There are endless great things I could say about him. I mean, I started the list before I even met him!

Monday, May 2, 2011

The Tall Dark Man

I have always enjoyed writing and have always been encouraged in it. I remember a particular time in life when my ninth grade English teacher raised my self-confidence in writing to a new level. We were given this prompt: "It was a dark and stormy night..." After she read through all our entries, she kept mine to read to the entire class. What an honor for a ninth grader! Thank you, Miss Thomas!

Here it is from August 21,2000:

It was a dark and stormy night when the tall dark man in the long black trench coat stepped under the street light. The time was approximately midnight. The man waited with a small briefcase in his right hand.

The light in the window across the street finally turned on.

The man looked at his watch and walked at a fast pace to the phone booth nearby. Closing the door, he dialed a number. His words were short: "Yes. I have it. No, no one killed. Yes." He looked suspiciously around, then opened the briefcase. He pulled out an envelope and some matches. After putting them in the inside pocket of his coat, he closed the briefcase and left the phone booth.

He went back to under the street light and opened an umbrella that had been mysteriously left there. He lit the match, burned the envelope, looked up to the window, and walked towards the apartment.

He stepped into the foyer and took off his coat. A maid came to assist him. He sat by the fire and lit a pipe. A tall woman about the same age walked in and sat down in a winged-back chair.

He looked at her and said, "I've burned the last remaining evidence. No one can ever find out."

She stood and threw his pipe into the fire, "I've called the police. They're coming to get you. You burned the wrong envelope." She held up her hand and revealed another envelope. "This has the original ransom note in it. The hostage is still in the basement. Return the money, and no evidence will be found showing you as the kidnapper."

"No, I'll never," he said as sirens were sounding outside.

He clutched the handle of the briefcase as the police came in and arrested him. They opened the briefcase, but only a hair comb lay in there.

"Ha, ha, ha," he laughed. "You have the wrong man!"

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Written Treasure

My parent's have an old traveller's trunk in their living room. It was passed down through my dad's side of the family. One of his relatives brought it over from Europe when they first immigrated (or emigrated?). It's kind of like a treasure chest, holding some very precious treasures: my memories from growing up.

I brought many of its contents home this weekend including my yearbooks, diaries and creative writing journals from school.

I'm in heaven.

I've been reading through my creative writing journals, and it's like I've struck gold. My sixth grade self is hilarious, my tenth grade self is inspiring. I'll share this little nugget with you. The prompt was to write about our goals. Here's an excerpt of what I said on August 14, 2000:

"I have many goals for each school year. As the year goes on, more goals come and go. For instance, I'll decide to do 30 sit-ups every night to keep in shape. My goal will fade as I come home tired everyday. My goals for this year would, right now, be to just come through with an A in each subject...

"...My one life goal as of now is to publish a book. I like to write fictional stories."

Don't worry, 14 year-old Deborah! You will accomplish this goal before your life is over!

I'll continue to share treasures from the trunk as I find them worthy of blog posts. Trust me, it's hard to decide, because everything seems worthy to me. I mean, I wrote it all! I'm kinda a big deal...to myself.