More insight in the English

September 27, 2007 at 10:25 pm | Posted in Personal | 2 Comments

I was fortunate to receive a lot of insight from the Cousins while they were here. It started because they genuinely seemed to want to do “local” things! This was shocking to me! All the other relatives had seemed to only want to re-create England right here. I found out from the cousins that this is actually a normal thing that many British do. I was told that many of the vacation hot spots for the British are in locations that simply mimic England except with good weather. There is English decor, food, beer, in fact, it is like a little England. They have seen this from Spain to Thailand! I never knew. I guess I figured that if you went on vacation somewhere, it was to do as the locals do. To have some fun, and soak up the culture though activities and food. That kind of attitude would explain a lot of the problems I felt I had with the previous family visits. There was a cultural misunderstanding of what a vacation should be! I am also glad that I got to experience a couple of English folks that were here to enjoy the Southern experience. We started by taking them for their first meal of real Mexican food!

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They loved it! We have a small locally owned restaurant right down the road that we go to all the time, and it is fabulous! It is entirely staffed by Latinos, and you often see Latinos eating there. This is a good sign. If you go into a Mexican restaurant and all you see is white folks, turn around and leave, it ain’t gonna be real Mexican food! We consider the folks at the restaurant like extended family, and thus they are always happy to meet our family! I think we all had a great time just eating, visiting and getting to know each other. Karma Girl loved having another “girl” to play with, especially one with a digital camera!  

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Remember to pay attention to those around you!

September 27, 2007 at 3:29 am | Posted in getting involved, politics | 1 Comment

You never know when you might see someone who needs your help! I saw this link over at Angry Black Bitch today and wanted to send it along to all of you. It is a shame that media still doesn’t place the same importance on a missing woman or child of color (any color) than they do on a little blond haired, blue eyed white girl. Please visit this sight and keep your eyes peeled. It takes a community to lift up our women and children!

http://blackandmissing.blogspot.com/

And http://bringnailahfranklinhome.com/content/

Chag Sameach!

September 26, 2007 at 8:29 pm | Posted in religion | Leave a comment

For those of you celebrating the Jewish holiday of Sukkot,

chag sameach!

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Visit from family

September 25, 2007 at 7:57 pm | Posted in Personal | 2 Comments

I thought we would never have family from England come to see us again, but I was fortunately wrong! Karma Hubby’s cousins contacted us and said they were traveling around the US and they wanted to meet us! I was nervous, but excited. My own family is not real close, so I guess I had hoped that by marriage I would be able to get that close family feeling, but it is not going to happen. I am to much the interloper to them. I feel sad about it, but it is their choice. So, it was with mixed feelings that we began to prepare for the visit from the Cousins. As we went to prepare the new room, we realized the AC is out. Now it is still in the 90’s outside, and the room was built into the attic area so it was at least 100 F in there! We went though two weeks jumping through hoops to get the AC repaired. Turns out that the guy who hooked it up to the new room, serviced it, and had just filled it with freon, neglected to tell us it had a leak. When we called our home warranty company, they said it was pre-existing, so they would not fix it. A new AC unit is astronomical, so we knew it was gonna be a bit to get it fixed. This sent us to moving all the stuff we had put up there to make a permanent and comfortable guest room, only to later finds out the people we made it for will not be visiting anymore, downstairs to the former “guestroom” which is really the study. We spent two weeks trying to get everything sorted, only to complete it at the last minute. Then it was just waiting for them to arrive and get them settled. Turns out they were super nice and such a pleasure to have! They were the perfect houseguests! The kids loved them and they seemed to love the kids! I was so relieved to have folks here that seemed to want to be here! We did tons of exciting things and I will tell you all about them, with photos, in upcoming posts. Just goes to show you, you have got to hang in there and have faith enough to not give up, people might surprise you any day! Plus, ain’t they just the cutest couple ever?!?

Strange knock at the door

September 24, 2007 at 4:08 pm | Posted in humor, Personal | 2 Comments

I could have sworn I heard a strange knock at the door and when I went to open it, here is what I found!

                                   

“She” was just staring at the door as if waiting for us to come and open it up for her. She hung around for a bit, visited with the kids,

we offered her some spinach for lunch, and she politely refused and wandered on her way to her next errand.

I love when fun and quirky things happen to break up a day!

September is National Preparedness Month

September 20, 2007 at 8:43 pm | Posted in frugal, Health, Personal, simplicity | 2 Comments

As we visited with friends and family who were affected by Katrina recently, I remembered the lessons I had learned from all the bad that happened there as we worked for two weeks in the garage as a staging center for the 28 family members we had displaced (Sister’s In-Laws)and listening to their stories. Of course, here in my area of the South, we get more tornados than anything. We also get to enjoy ice in the winter. Some of ya’ll get snow storms, we get ice. And is case you didn’t already know, it can be a real pain in the a$$ to deal with ice on everything. Power lines snap and roads are undriveable. So, I have done what every one should try and do, I have emergence kits built into my everyday life. The problem with having a regular kit as recommended by FEMA is that the kit can blown away or float away with the house.

The biggest lesson we learned through Katrina and through tornadoes, is to have a safety box at a bank. Passports, copies of IDs, birth certificates, and any other valuable information (credit card numbers and insurance papers) should be in there. If your house disappears in a fire, tornado, flood, hurricane the chances are that your bank vault might still be there. Also prescriptions kept at a national chain can be accessed from anywhere else there is that same chain, so if your local drug store is under water, you can still get your meds. Just make sure that all the stores are connected because just because they share the same name, doesn’t mean they can access your prescription if you wind up re-located to another state. This also helps if you loose your prescription, or find yourself needing one (like antibiotics) while on vacation.

There are also the little things that work well all the time. We are now in the process of acquiring all hand crank flashlights. This works on frugality and environmentalism too since we are not having to replace batteries all the time! This also is a help since the kids love playing with the flashlights (torches for my British readers!) during non storm time. By being frugal, we have hand cranked can openers, and plenty of blankets.

We also use part of our kit as our “hospital” bag. We have one bag that is packed with just about everything we could need for a hospital stay. If you find yourself suddenly needing to stay at the hospital, especially as a patient, it helps if you can send someone to grab that one bag and maybe nightclothes. This is especially useful if you are taking a child to the hospital ER and you know they are going to be admitted overnight. Just grab the bag on your way out of the door and you are set .

You can access more complete lists at http://www.ready.gov/.You can also check out http://www.fema.gov/and http://www.redcross.org/. How about you all, any tips you want to share with others on being truly prepared for anything?

Arrrrrgh!

September 19, 2007 at 10:17 pm | Posted in humor, politics | Leave a comment

Today is national “Talk like a Pirate” day and gosh have we ever!

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Talk_Like_A_Pirate_Day It is has been all “Arrr” and “Aye” here today! I hope you are having fun with it too!

Tomorrow we plan to wear black to show our support for the Jenna Six

http://www.michaelbaisden.com/Article.asp?id=470156

Arrr, tis mighty important for justice to be equal, and fer those that don’t agree, well ya scurvy dawgs, ye may walk tha plank!

Sew good!

September 17, 2007 at 4:49 pm | Posted in Craft, frugal, Health, Personal, recycling, simplicity | 5 Comments

shirt-beforee.jpgAs my weight loss has now neared 60 pounds, I am at the end of retro fitting my clothes. I have taken almost as much as I can out of the tops, and the cotton is getting thin from wear. Here is a before and after of my Razorback shirt (go Hogs!) shirtaftere.jpg

I feel good that I have learned enough about sewing to alter my clothes, the kid’s clothes, and to fix items that require sewing. See the cute little purse gifted to me by my Panamanian friend after a visit to her family? I am so glad I could repair the strap! The interior of the patchwork bag (vintage from my mom’s closet) needed repairing also. repairedclothese.jpgThere was a time in my life that I would have just gotten rid of the clothes instead of trying to make them last, much less repair them. I am really looking forward to buying new clothes for the winter as I no longer own a pair of jeans! I never thought I would shrink out of my clothes, but here I am! There are a couple of big consignment sales happening this month, so I will wait till the last day, when things are 50% off and go see what they got!I hate being at the plateau I am at, I really want to loose this last bit (I dunno, 30 lbs maybe) and I know what I can do to make that happen, I just haven’t cracked down hard enough on myself to do it. I have some calories to cut and some exercise to catch up on. I am at least glad that I have not put on the 10 lbs I had been averaging in gain per year for as long as I can remember.

Summer wrap up

September 15, 2007 at 2:10 am | Posted in Personal | 3 Comments

OK, so I keep telling you I will let you know what all else is going on, but I never seem to be at the computer anymore, at least not with time to write. I love reading all the blogs on my “roll” and keeping up with everything happening around me. To wrap up summer, in a most un-ceremonious way, here are some of the highlights.Karma Girl learned how to jump off the diving board all by herself, without any floaters. (In this photo she still has them on) poolblogsized.jpgBoth kids love going to the pool and playing in the water. They have both been through stages of scared to get the face wet, to no fear, to hate getting face wet. Sigh. Their father is not a big swimmer, but I can never remember a time I wasn’t in the water! The pool is now closed for the summer and the kids are already ready for it to be open again. I will keep the pool bag packed all winter in case we travel and can get to a pool.Karma Girl is now an officially registered home schooled child! Our co-op is in full swing and we are having lots of fun. We even went roller-skating and ice skating for the first time! blogsized-skate.jpgThey had so much fun! Me? I was frazzled! It is hard keeping two kids up right when you can barely do it your self. I do think it made them feel better though to see mom wobbling around on ice skates.blogsized-ice-skate.jpg We had a bowling day, and the kids bowled a 94, and 89 respectively on their first ever time to bowl. Yes, that was with bumpers, but I feel some bowling genius coming out of them!That is some of the highlights, and as things start coming into order, I hope to post a little more.

Fun link

September 13, 2007 at 2:50 am | Posted in Craft, frugal, recycling, simplicity | 1 Comment

I was reading this article at Wise Breadhttp://www.wisebread.com/cool-ideas-for-clothespins-and-binder-clips

and went to this link. http://www.rd.com/content/extraordinaryuses/extraordinary-uses-for-clothespins/So cool! I just had to share!

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