Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Play Me a Tune, Mr. Piano Man

This might be boring for some, but I thought it would be interesting to see my "playlist" for the day at work. I didn't listen to my iPod the whole day, or I'd have a ton more songs. But as it is, this shows my eclectic taste in music. It was set on My Top Rated.

  1. The Covenant - Annointed
  2. Feels Like Home - Chantal
  3. Better Than Wine - Derek Webb
  4. Crimson - Nicole Nordeman
  5. Lucky - Hoobastank
  6. Hero - Chad Kroeger
  7. Miss Independant - Kelly Clarkson
  8. Bari Improve - Kaki King
  9. Rush - Ally & AJ
  10. I Saw the Light - David Crowder Band
  11. This Is Your Life - Switchfoot
  12. Wide Open Spaces - Dixie Chicks
  13. So I'll Stand - Nickel & Dime
  14. Brighter Day - Kirk Franklin
  15. Clothes - Barlow Girl
  16. Alejate - Josh Groban
  17. Consuming Fire - Third Day
  18. You're An Animal - Jose Gonzalez
  19. No One Like You - Passion Worship Band
  20. My Stupid Mouth - John Mayer
  21. Still at the Shore - Shane & Shane
  22. Bless the Lord - Jason Morant
  23. I Will Praise You - Jacob's Well
  24. All I Need - Shawn McDonald
  25. Soulfire - 12 Stones
  26. She Talks to Angels - Dashboard Confessional
  27. Never Alone - Barlow Girl
  28. Stars - Switchfoot
  29. Open Skies - David Crowder Band
  30. Numb - Linkin Park (clean version)
  31. 1985 - Bowling For Soup
  32. Good Morning Sun - Ben Folds Five
  33. Abandon - Jason Morant
  34. Walk By Faith - Jeremy Camp
  35. All For Believing - Missy Higgins
  36. Perfectly Done - Shawn McDonald
  37. Offering - Jason Morant
  38. Famous People - Brad Paisley
  39. A Song For Momma - Boyz II Men
  40. Wrestle With God - Wild Sweet Orange
  41. When She Cries - Britt Nicole
  42. Perfect Picture - Michael W. Smith
  43. All About You - Nate Sallie
  44. Last Flight Out - Plus One
  45. None But Jesus - Hillsong
  46. Little Moments - Brad Paisley
  47. Listen - Nouveaux
  48. I Don't Regret - Barlow Girl
  49. Everyday - Hillsong
  50. Around Me - Jennifer Knapp
  51. Feelin' the Same Way - Norah Jones
  52. Was It Just a Dream? - 30 Seconds to Mars
  53. Letters to the President - Hawk Nelson
  54. Politik - Coldplay
  55. The Day Before - Tammy Harper
  56. No Such Thing - John Mayer
  57. I Can Only Imagine - Mercy Me
  58. Catchafire (Whoopsi Daisy) - Toby Mac
  59. One Boy, One Girl - Collin Raye
  60. Not Enough - Caedmon's Call
  61. Above All - Michael W. Smith
  62. You Are Better - Jacob's Well

Monday, August 25, 2008

Visual DNA

This is really neat...try it! When you click on the link, a series of about 15 pictures will come up. Click on a photo in that category that appeals to you. Again 15 pictures will come up, click the one for you and move on. Just continue to keep picking. At the end it will give you a profile of yourself.... It's called a visual DNA.... Your choices dictate your profile. Click on the tabs on the right. I thought mine turned out pretty accurate.....

Recent Grant Pictures

Here are some recent pictures of my favorite nephew. Of course, the fact that he's my only nephew doesn't mean anything. :)
I asked Grant to smile and he winked at me. What a little ham!

My brother in law was washing the car. Grant couldn't believe his luck that he was able to "help" his daddy, and get soaking wet in the process! He kept saying, "Splash!"and "Wash". He had the best time!!

Grant came out to meet me when I got home from work. I asked him if I could take his picture. He first said, "No" and then smiled and said "Yes". But the stinker wouldn't smile for me.

This is from a few months ago. I asked Grant to be an elephant. Usually, he'll "trumpet" like an elephant, but this time, he decided to "be" an elephant. Aren't kids so creative??

Silly little boy! This time he did smile for me!

My sister, Stephanie

His favorite playground activity... swinging!

He likes to sit in my lap and watch the videos I've taken of him. After each one, he'll say, "More." Every now and then, I try to surprise him and take a picture. It's not often he's still anymore!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

God forbid

The more I know your power, Lord
The more I'm mindful
How casually we speak and sing Your name
How often we have come to You
With no fear or wonder
And called upon You only for what we stand to gain

God forbid, that I find You so familiar
That I think of You as less than who You are
God forbid, that I should speak of You at all
Without a humble reverence in my heart
God forbid

Lord, I often talk about Your love and mercy
How it seems to me Your goodness has no end
It frightens me to think that I could take You for granted
Though You're closer than a brother
You're more than just a friend

God forbid, that I find You so familiar
That I think of You as less than who You are
God forbid, that I should speak of yYou at all
Without a humble reverence in my heart
God forbid

You are father, God Almighty
Lord of Lords, Your King of Kings
Beyond my understanding
No less than everything

God forbid, that I find You so familiar
That I think of You as less than who You are
God forbid, that I should speak of You at all
Without a humble reverence in my heart
God forbid

God forbid
God forbid

~ Point of Grace

Santa Rosa Beach

Here are a few pictures I took on my cell phone, from our beach trip to Santa Rosa (near San Destin)

My Mom, who never goes into the ocean, went for a walk with me.
We decided to look for shells. She knelt over to get a good one and... fell in!
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Mother's Day

My dad took us out to the swanky restaurant at the Birmingham Botanical Gardens for Mother's Day.

Me, Mom and Grant
(It was unusually chilly that day and I was freezing!)

Grant and Dad (whom he calls "Pops")

Stephanie and Carl

Grant... playing next to the very prickly rose bushes.
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Thursday, August 21, 2008

What a Mighty Fine Day

Let's talk about my crazy day, shall we?

I set my alarm early, with the intention of getting up early (obviously), so I could get to Starbucks for a special treat. However, when I looked at the clock this morning, it was after 8:00!! The first words out of my mouth were, "CRAP!" I threw my covers back and took the fastest shower of my life. I was still late to work, but surprisingly, not very. No Starbucks for Mer.

I haven't been at work too long, when I'm sent on my first errand of the day. My poor coworker has a double ear and sinus infection. (Hello! Why aren't you home in bed?) So, my boss asked me to go fill her prescription. I was actually able to get three things done, in one feld swoop. Her drugs. Deposit a check. And, get a peppermint mocha at Starbucks! Yeah!

I get back and dig into work. Unlike most mortgage companies around town, we are SLAMMED! From day to day, I never know what my day will look like, but I'll most certainly be busy. Example, over the course of about four days total, I stuffed 700 envelopes. Yes, you read that right. 700!! I edited, printed and folded the letters... Separated all the magnets... Stacked the letter and magnet together for ease of stuffing... ran the envelopes through the postage machine (that alone took a few hours!)... Stuffed them... taped them all closed... and finally put address labels on. That didn't even include all my other random work.

My second 'errand' is to go pick up lunch. Since I haven't made it back to Walmart since my last debacle, I've been eating out. Spending money like I had some. Ha That's besides the point. Since I helped my coworker with that mailing, he said he'd buy my lunch for the next while. So, I picked Jason's Deli for lunch. I have a new favorite there: Chicken Club Wrapini with fruit on the side. Ohmygoodness. So yummy. Usually, whoever picks the place, has to pick up the food. I'm not sure how that started, but that seems to be how it works. Although, come to think of it, I'm pretty much the designated food getter. Which has its perks, but often, just a pain in the patootie.

Craziness ensues after lunch. The phones ringing off the hook. I'm copying large files, one after the other. Many things are going on and I'm in the thick of it, when my boss says, 'Hey, you want a drink?' 'Sure, I say.' (Which usually means he or someone else wants one and doesn't want to go get it.) He plops down I'd say around $3 in quarters. His underlining expression is that he wants me to drop everything I'm doing and go get. I don't "obey" immediately and he comes back to check on me and gives me this 'look'. "I'm leaving," I say. Good grief. So, that makes errand number 3 for the day.

I felt like I was out of the office more than I was in it today. Not sure, but I think I used 1/4 tank of gas! Geez.

Oh, I forgot to mention. My router arrived at work some point in the day. My first thought was, "Oh man, I hope this works." Surprisingly, when I first get home, I didn't race upstairs to try it out. Instead, I cleaned up my car some. I've been meaning to clean the windows for a while now. I put washer fluid in the car and RainX'd the windshield. I also armoraled (is that a real verb?) all the leather parts in my car. Now, I just need to vacuum it out and give it a bath.

Back to the router. I'm not going to go into all the details, as it'll just frustrate and make me mad all over again. But let's just say, my apprehension from the other night came to fruition. Dang it. I broke down and called Tech support.

Why in the world are all the options leading up to speaking with a human, in perfect English, but once you reach a human, it's someone from India? Please, answer me this question?!?!?!?!?!? I understand the need to save money, but please, give me a break! Are you really doing the American public a service by making everyone mad who calls for help? There's GOT TO BE a better way!!! I mean, seriously. OK, I'll get off my soapbox for tonight.

I'm talking with this woman in India. I'm speaking as clearly as possible. Spelling things out, using names for letters, so she'll know what I mean. (M for Mandy. E for Elephant. R for Richard. E for, well you get the idea. But I have 16 letters in my first and last name, so this 'game' went on for a while.) Once we she had my name down, I began to tell her about my problem. Which, by the way, I explained to her AT LEAST THREE different times. Each time, she'd come back and tell me the very same things. Ohmygosh. I thought I was going to scream. I finally said, "Ma'am, you aren't listening to me. This is getting me absolutely no where. Hope you have a good night." CLICK!! I am not easily angered, but whew buddy, this pushed me over the edge!

I unplugged everything and walked away... and called my mom. haha Then made dinner, chocolate chip pancakes and watched Olympics. Which leads me to now, 1:04am. I should have been asleep about an hour or two ago. Oh, this is funny, I was fast forwarding through commercials and I fell asleep. LOL Thankfully, I wasn't out long. Ok, off to bed for me.

Happy trails!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

I Heart Seattle

I thought a lot about Seattle today, for some reason. I went consecutively for nine years, but haven't been back in two. I really miss it. I come alive in this way I don't even know how to describe. It's like the closer I get, the more my heart races, the more I feel alive. I don't know what God has in store for me next summer, but I'm definitely thinking about my Suquamish friends. Though, they are in my heart, so they aren't too far from my mind. Here are some pictues taken three years ago! Wow, has it been that long?!?

Jessica and me on the ferry

Christy, Jonathan and Austin

Christy and me

Just a sample of the gorgeous flowers at Kiana Gardens on the Suquamish Reservation
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ARV & Mer

Amy and I realized we don't have very many pictures together, so we were inspired to be silly.

One of my few friends whom I see eye to eye with.

This worked out amazingly well. I set the self timer on my cell phone. (Isn't technology crazy?) I only had 5 seconds to get into place.
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Tuesday, August 19, 2008

The Nature of the Beast

Remember a few months ago when my internal network card went capooey or something of that nature? And I had to go through the "trauma" of figuring out what to do next? Well, wouldn't you know it, the replacement external thingamabob broke recently. Without getting too technical, there's a small prong which holds the Ethernet cable in place. But, it wasn't made very well and somehow the flappy thing broke. After much frustration, I finally found the connection and decided to duct tape it in place. Which, in theory, was a great idea. But it's not a completely secure connection, so every once in a while, if I move just right, I lose connection. Arg.

I'm back at square one where I was a few months ago. Do I purchase another external thingamabob, but with a better connection port? Or do I spend a little bit more and get a wireless router? That's the question of the hour. I've done a lot of thinking and it just makes sense to 'splurge' and get the router. I'm not that concerned about the price - only because I have an unexpected $50 gift card from Toyota for the test drive that I didn't take. (I think I talked about that in an earlier post?) Not to say I'm just throwing money away, no, not at all. I want to use it wisely and think this is the way.

My other concern is that something will go wrong while I'm installing it. Because, let's face it people, my life is like that theory of relativity or whatever it's called. Anything that can go wrong, will. It's just the nature of the beast in the Quintana family. So, while I trust my computer skills, as I'm somewhat of a geek and know my way around a commuter. I didn't do so hot in networking class. In fact, I think it was the only C I made my whole time at Virginia College.

Therefore, I enlisted the help of my friend Amy's husband, Tommy. I told him about my situation and asked his opinion on what I should do. He agreed with me to go for the wireless router. In the long run, it'll add a tremendous amount of freedom for me. (I'm currently trapped in my bedroom, as far as the Ethernet cord will reach. Which given the fact I have to move my laptop v-e-r-y c-a-r-f-u-l-l-y in order to maintain connection, as previously mentioned. I can't get too far.)

So, I purchased this one from Hopefully I made the right choice. It's not like me to just purchase something without doing a ton of research, but I trust Tommy's opinion. He said he's had this one for years and hasn't had a problem with it since he bought it. Plus, another good thing, he'll know how to help me should something go wrong. Which, well, you know. Speaking of which, my "L" key just went flying off the keyboard. I kid you not!! Do you see my apprehension? hahalooolollll (That's what happens when mashing the L back in place!)

Monday, August 18, 2008

My Ambition In Life Is To

Written for a free write assignment in English class. I just started to write, and this is what came out. Reminding me once again of my real job here on Earth. ~ January 23, 2002

My ambition in life is to, first and foremost, follow God’s will. Though, figuring that out is have the fun. Someday, if God blesses me with a husband and children, I would love to be a stay-at-home wife and mother. After watching my mom for the past 24 years, that is who I want to be. I also want to design web pages for Christian organizations. I would love to be able to someday, work from home. So, I could be there for my family if they needed me.

I think ambition is something that carries me throughout life. Without it, I would have no drive or will to succeed. When I was younger, I wanted to be the one to kick the kick ball the farthest, so I could get all the runners home safely. At that age, it was a real ambition; one that I could see and reach. Although, now I look back and I just smile. As I grew and matured, my ambitions became bigger. They grew from child-like dreams to, hopefully one day, grown-up realities. I often struggle with what I want my ambitions to be, and what God really wants for me. Are all my motives selfish? Are they the best for me? I often wonder.

I often wonder about the things that I do. How do they affect the people I know? I often wonder if the things I aspire to do, will make a difference in people’s lives. I know that I will, and I know that I have. This weekend is the direct proof that I do indeed make a difference. One poem could quite possibly change the lives of strangers for eternity. It’s true; people really do hang on the verge. How selfish of me not to realize this more often. I get so caught up in the things I want to accomplish, that often it becomes hard to stop and think about others. I am not here for me. I am here to serve my Creator, by winning souls for Him. That is what my ambition should be. That’s all I should ever care about. How dare I forget that!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Who's on first?

I love this bit!! Abbott and Costello perform the classic "Who's on first?" baseball sketch in their 1945 film. Check it out!

Chocolate Chip Supreme Cookies

My sister made these fantastic cookies this weekend, make them for yourself and see what you think!

Chocolate Chip Supreme Cookies

½ cup shortening
½ cup butter or margarine, softened
¾ cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
¾ cup sugar
2 eggs
1 (3.4 ounce) package vanilla instant pudding mix
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
2 ¼ cups flour
1 tablespoon baking soda
¾ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
½ teaspoon salt
12 ounces semisweet chocolate chips
1 ½ cups chopped pecans
1 cup uncooked quick-cooking oats

Cream shortening and butter; gradually add sugars, beating well. Add eggs, beating until blended. Add pudding mix and vanilla; beat until blended. Combine flour and next 4 ingredients. Gradually add to butter mixture, beating until blended. Stir in morsels, pecans and oats.

Shape dough into 1½-inch balls; place on lightly greased baking sheets, and press to 1-inch thickness. Bake at 375 degrees for 12 minutes or until lightly browned on top. Remove cookies to wire racks to cool.

From Southern Living: 40 Years of Our Best Recipes

To the Faceless Man in My Dreams…

For some reason, I woke up with this poem on my mind, so I thought I'd share. Let me know what you think.

You have visited me often; more recently than before
Always making me feel as though you know me through and through
An unexplainable feeling of joy
That finally someone understand me
I smile, laugh, and talk with you so freely,
Not at all clumsy like when I’m awake
You know just the right things to say
And always when to same them

I long to be in your presence
To feel your loving words drape over my worrisome shoulders
So that they sooth the rigid muscles, calming my very being

I long to sit with you
Talking about much or nothing at all
But either way, I’d leave knowing I had the best conversation all day

I long for your companionship
When a simple act, like telling a story
Opens up the very fabric of time, to explore through our imaginations

I long to go on adventures with you
Whether we tame the wild beasts… at the zoo
Or go on a "lion hunt" in the backyard
The destination always the same… imaginative adventures

I long to ask you random questions
Where you patiently answer each with a smile
And a question in return for me

I long for you to challenge me
To make me the person you know I can be

I long to meet and get to know you
I long for my life-long, best friend
I long to not feel lonely
I long…

Written by Meredith Quintana on February 11, 2003

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Sadness of Being Forgotten

Do you ever read something and for no apparent reason feel unsettling drawn to it for inexplicable reasons? That very thing happened to me last night. I started a new book which my coworker gave me, "The Last Summer (of You and Me)" by Ann Brashares [Same author as The Sisterhood of The Traveling Pants]. While I can't technically recommend it yet, as I'm only 1/4 into it, I wanted to share this quote:

"Sometimes you couldn't face the sadness of being forgotten until you felt the comfort of being remembered again."

I can't tell you why this affected me so, but it took my breath away for some reason. Does it mean anything to you? Evoke any feelings? Or am I just being my crazy emotional self again?

Beyond Measure

Often, when I'm feeling wordless, but overwhelmed by 'something', a song will come on my iPod which perfectly describes it all. Which is why I'll randomly post lyrics -- in case you've ever wondered.

The fog has finally cleared to see,
The beautiful life you've given me
To feel the breeze of my newborn's gentle breath
With one to walk hand in hand,
To share this life that you have planned
It's like a storybook with dreams
That are meant to see every next step is an extraordinary scene

I know that I've been,
Given more than beyond measure,
I come alive when,
I see beyond my fears
I know that I've been given more than earthly treasure,
I come alive when
I've broken down and given you control

I've faced a great tragedy,
But have seen the works of what you bring
A display of faith that you give,
I don't know if I will ever understand
The depth of what it is you've done inside,
But I know that I will won't find any worth apart from you

Everything that I have
Has been given so unselfishly
And shown that even when I don't deserve
You always show the fullness of your love

--Beyond Measure by Jeremy camp

Drunk on Spirits of Fear

For reasons, unknown by me, I've become quite fearful lately; literally paralyzed with fear. Most often it rears its head at the most unusual time, like going grocery shopping or something equally as normal. I get all ready to go, but stand at the threshold of my door, look out the window and don't move. I can't explain it. It's never happened before, at least, not like this. This year especially has prevented me from doing normal every day things. I was reading in a medical handbook of sorts at the Dollar's house the other night about all sorts of interesting things, when low and behold, I stumbled upon the issue of anxiety. There was check list to "self diagnose" yourself. One by one, I read through the items, and was astounded that it described how I've been feeling lately.

I'm not one to talk about how I'm feeling. It's just not something I do. Whether it makes me sound whiny, or let's face the real issue, I don't want to be vulnerable. I hate putting myself out there, knowing that people will look at me differently or perhaps even make judgements about things they have no understandings of. Which, is another reason I often don't talk about my depression. It's just easier to push it down deep and deal with everything else going on in my world. But, as we all know, pushing something away doesn't resolve the issue. It's just like a boomerang and will eventually come back around. But this isn't about depression tonight, though, perhaps might be related.


It's such a small word which literally oozes from every fiber of my being at time. Obviously, not all the time, but enough that I feel the need to write about it. You know? Usually the very things I don't want to talk about are the very things which need to be out there. So whom ever this is for, know that you're not alone. You see, I should have no reason to fear. Not only are all my needs (and most wants) met, but I'm a child of God. I John 4:18 says, "There is no fear in love, but perfect love casts out fear."

I've never been drunk before, nor do I ever plan on being so. I was listening to my iPod today at work and "This World" by Caedmon's Call came on. A song I've heard literally hundreds of time before, but suddenly the one line, "This world is making me drunk on the spirits of fear." hit me like a ton of bricks.

I've been walking around drunk on the spirit of fear. I've allowed this into my life and it's prevented me from living. Achieving goals. Find the potential buried deep within me. I was destined for bigger and better things. (You too!) God didn't create me to merely earn a paycheck! He created me to glorify Him. But what have I been doing? Sitting on the sidelines, scared of what might happen if I get in the game and get hurt. (Sorry for the sport analogy.)

Essentially what I'm saying is this. Yes, I struggle with the 'what ifs' in life and yes I allow fear to overwhelm me, but basically what I'm trying to do is give myself a pep talk. I need to buck up and get on with my life. I just don't want to look back even a year from now and be in the same place I'm in now.

I read a quote the other day that said something about how those who have made a difference in life didn't sit back and wait for it to happen. No, they chased after what they wanted, with no fear and had conviction that they would succeed. (Man, I can't remember the real quote, it was way better than my paraphrase!) I want the same for my life.... I'm just not sure how to get there. Any ideas?

There's tarnish on the golden rule
And I wanna jump from this ship of fools
Show me a place where hope is young
And a people who aren't afraid to love

This world has nothing for me and this world has everything
All that I could want and nothing that I need

This world is making me drunk on the spirits of fear.
So when he says who will go, I am nowhere near.

And the least of these look like criminals to me
So I leave Christ on the street

This world has held my hand and has led me into intolerance
But now I'm waking up, but now I'm breaking up
But now I'm making up for lost time
--Caedmon's Call

Monday, August 11, 2008

Everybody Knows

Everybody Knows
Author Unknown

You can't be all things to all people.
You can't do all things at once.
You can't do all things equally well.
You can't do all things better than everyone else.
Your humanity is showing just like everyone else's.

SO...You have to find out who you are, and be that.
You have to decide what comes first, and do that.
You have to discover your strengths, and use them.
You have to learn not to compete with others,
Because no one else is in the contest of "being you."

THEN...You will have learned to accept your own uniqueness.
You will have learned to set priorities and make decisions.
You will have learned to live with your limitations.
You will have learned to give yourself the respect that is due,
And you'll be a most vital mortal.

DARE TO BELIEVE...That you are a wonderful, unique person.
That you are a once-in-all-history event.
That it's more than a right, it's your duty, to be who you are.
That life is not a problem to solve, but a gift to cherish.
And you'll be able to stay one up on what used to get you down.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

I Wanna Talk About Me

I have been tagged by my bloggy pal, Keep Going.

Here are the rules:

1) Link to the person who tagged you.

2) Post the rules on your blog (copy and paste 1-6).

3) Write 6 random things about yourself (see below).

4) Tag 6 people at the end of your post and link to them.

5) Let each person know they have been tagged and leave a comment on their blog.

6) Let the tagger know when your entry is up.


1) I'm not a fan of larger groups of people, especially those whom I don't know. I tend to become a wallflower, but put a game in front of me and whew buddy, I'm a completely different person.

2) I taught myself how to ride a two-wheeler at age 8. (We had just moved to Virginia and the moving truck was literally pulling our stuff off the truck. I saw a group of neighborhood kids next door and wanted to join in, but didn't want to seem like a baby with my training wheels. I asked my mom to take them off and off I went to find adventure. I could be completely remembering this event wrong, but I don't recall anyone running behind me or anything traditional like that. Though, I've never been a very traditional leaner.)

3) I have an insatiable curiosity.

4) Being an Air Force "brat", I've moved around a bit. But the furthest place I've visited was Novosibirsk, Siberia on a mission trip in 1995.

5) God's gifted me with several creative talents. My current project, a book, "Strength in the Struggle"!! It's a collection of things I've written and photography I've taken.... all for HIS glory! I can't wait to see what He's going to do with it!!

6) I LOVE quotes. I found a good one tonight, "Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life. -- Confucius"


Did I Just Say That?

Of Heaven and Earth

Mighty Mama Molly

Tiny Green Dancer

Dreams, Nightmares and Other Random Ramblings

Blessed Beyond Belief

Monday, August 4, 2008

What had happened was...

...a series of unfortunate events, culminating with a rather unproductive Wal*Mart trip. But let me start back at the beginning. Actually, this whole mid-adventure could have been avoided had I gone to the store on Sunday like I'd planned. However, that's neither here nor there.

My hair cut appointment got cancelled, so I had unexpected time after work. I desperately needed to go grocery shopping; just like Old Mother's Hubbard cupboards, mine were bare as well. I really wish I wouldn't wait so long between Wal*Mart trips, but I know they will be costly and I hate spending money on food.

As I'm sitting in traffic, I realize there's no time like the present. Although, I realize my grocery list and coupons are at home. I know me. If I go home, I won't want to leave again. I had a pretty good idea what I needed (IE out of everything), so I figured it would be OK. Those were my first two mistakes.

If my like were like The Truman Show, I honestly think I might have really good ratings. Things just happen to me. I don't believe in luck, nor fate, so I don't know what to tell you. But I've come to see it as comical. I say that because of what's about to happen next (and really the whole trip). I got a cart and started to wheel it in the store, but that's when I noticed the squeaking... and everyone starring at me. Granted, I'm overly sensitive, I know this. But honestly, I knew people really were staring at me. So, I head back to the carts and pick out a new one. This cart has its own problems... a strong left pull. I wrongly thought, this is no big deal; it'll be fine. (Read: I should have exchanged it one more time.) Mistake #3.

I needed items from both sides of the store: tooth paste, hair rubber bands (which I feel like I just bought, but I can never find any; what's that about anyway?), but as I mentioned before I also needed food. Did I mention I was hungry? Mistake #4

Why is it that Wal*Mart often has everything you don't need, yet nothing you want? Many of the normal things I purchase, they were out of. I'd rather go without than work with something else. (I'm referring to my face wash here. Not that you cared, but in case you were wondering. Oh, also my shampoo/conditioner too. It's a conspiracy, I tell you. Advertising companies get us hooked on something, then they rip the rug out from underneath us and make us get used to something new....) Oops, sorry, obviously, I hit a sensitive nerve with myself.

I had a Dad Question and called home, but got Mom; which was totally fine as it was her birthday today. I got to ramble to her a bit and hear about her day as well. But before I knew it, I'd not only wandered from my directive means of shopping (IE get what I need and get out), but I was also struggling with my left-handed cart, steering one-handed. Mistake #5

Back on track I headed towards the food part of the store. Normally, I hit all the inner isles, then come back and get all my refrigerated/freezer items. But I was already tired, hungry and oh yeah, did I mention I needed to use the restroom? Oh man. So, I foolishly did everything at once - without a list - and no coupons! Let me tell you, it was a disaster waiting to happen! Mistake #6

I really wanted to buy some fresh fruit, like a cantaloupe. Mom said to smell the bottom of it and 'feel it'. I felt like a complete doofus, especially having no idea if what I was doing was right. Then I remembered, I have no time to waste, things are thawing; no time to spare. I threw out that idea and headed for the check out isles. About that time, I realized, I really have no idea what's in my cart. Do I have lunch items? Um, not really. Do I have stuff to make dinners? Not so much. Did I get the Brita filters? Yes. At least, I remembered something.

I get home and unpack all the groceries, only to discover that I'm going to have to go back another day. But we knew that was going to happen from the beginning of the story, didn't we? Oh and I had one last mistake. I was looking over my receipt and realized I'd left my case of Diet Mt. Dew underneath the cart. Dang it! Either someone got something free, or they just brought it back in the store. Wouldn't you love to be a fly on the wall and see who the honest people are? Oh well. Serves me right. I weened myself off caffeine, now I'm back on the wagon.

Despite my many mistakes, I actually found some things I needed like: windshield wiper fluid, a watering can, 2000 Flushes, Chap stick, and coin wrappers (which by the way, once I got settled, I rolled coins = $31.50).

Now I need to figure out what I'm going to wear to work, brush my teeth and get to bed. Happy trails!

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Dog's Purpose

Dog's Purpose (from a 6-year-old's perspective).

Being a veterinarian, I had been called to examine a ten-year-old Irish Wolfhound named Belker. The dog's owners, Ron, his wife Lisa, and their little boy Shane, were all very attached to Belker, and they were hoping for a miracle.

I examined Belker and found he was dying of cancer. I told the family we couldn't do anything for Belker, and offered to perform the euthanasia procedure for the old dog in their home.

As we made arrangements, Ron and Lisa told me they thought it would be good for six-year-old Shane to observe the procedure. They felt as though Shane might learn something from the experience.

The next day, I felt the familiar catch in my throat as Belker's family surrounded him. Shane seemed so calm, petting the old dog for the last time, that I wondered if he understood what was going on. Within a few minutes, Belker slipped peacefully away.

The little boy seemed to accept Belker's transition without any difficulty or confusion. We sat together for a while after Belker's Death, w ondering aloud about the sad fact that animal lives are shorter than human lives. Shane, who had been listening quietly, piped up, 'I know why.'

Startled, we all turned to him. What came out of his mouth next stunned me. I'd never heard a more comforting explanation.

He said, 'People are born so that they can learn how to live a good. Life -- like loving everybody all the time and being nice, right?' The Six-year-old continued, 'Well, dogs already know how to do that, so they don't have to stay as long.'

Live simply.

Love generously.

Care deeply.

Speak kindly.

Remember, if a dog was the teacher you would learn things like:

When loved ones come home, always run to greet them.

Never pass up the opportunity to go for a joyride. Allow the experience of fresh air and the wind in your face to be pure Ecstasy.

Take naps.

Stretch before rising.

Run, romp, and play daily.

Thrive on attention and let people touch you.

Avoid biting when a simple growl will do.

On warm days, stop to lie on your back on the grass.

On hot days, drink lots of water and lie under a shady tree.

When you're happy, dance around and wag your entire body.

Delight in the simple joy of a long walk.

Be loyal.

Never pretend to be something you're not.

If what you want lies buried, dig until you find it.

When someone is having a bad day, be silent, sit close by, and nuzzle them gently.


Saturday, August 2, 2008


Ever wonder about me? This says it all!

The Nurturer
Introverted Sensing Feeling Judging

Quiet, kind, and conscientious. Can be depended on to follow through.
Usually puts the needs of others above their own needs. Stable and
practical, they value security and traditions. Well-developed sense of
space and function. Rich inner world of observations about people.
Extremely perceptive of other's feelings. Interested in serving others.

As an ISFJ, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you
takes things in via your five senses in a literal, concrete fashion.
Your secondary mode is external, where you deal with things according to
how you feel about them, or how they fit into your personal value

ISFJs live in a world that is concrete and kind. They are truly warm and
kind-hearted, and want to believe the best of people. They value harmony
and cooperation, and are likely to be very sensitive to other people's
feelings. People value the ISFJ for their consideration and awareness,
and their ability to bring out the best in others by their firm desire
to believe the best.

ISFJs have a rich inner world that is not usually obvious to observers.
They constantly take in information about people and situations that is
personally important to them, and store it away. This tremendous store
of information is usually startlingly accurate, because the ISFJ has an
exceptional memory about things that are important to their value
systems. It would not be uncommon for the ISFJ to remember a particular
facial expression or conversation in precise detail years after the
event occured, if the situation made an impression on the ISFJ.

ISFJs have a very clear idea of the way things should be, which they
strive to attain. They value security and kindness, and respect
traditions and laws. They tend to believe that existing systems are
there because they work. Therefore, they're not likely to buy into doing
things in a new way, unless they're shown in a concrete way why its
better than the established method.

ISFJs learn best by doing, rather than by reading about something in a
book, or applying theory. For this reason, they are not likely to be
found in fields which require a lot of conceptual analysis or theory.
They value practical application. Traditional methods of higher
education, which require a lot of theorizing and abstraction, are likely
to be a chore for the ISFJ. The ISFJ learns a task best by being shown
its practical application. Once the task is learned, and its practical
importance is understood, the ISFJ will faithfully and tirelessly carry
through the task to completion. The ISFJ is extremely dependable.

The ISFJ has an extremely well-developed sense of space, function, and
aesthetic appeal. For that reason, they're likely to have beautifully
furnished, functional homes. They make extremely good interior
decorators. This special ability, combined with their sensitivity to
other's feelings and desires, makes them very likely to be great
gift-givers - finding the right gift which will be truly appreciated by
the recipient.

More so than other types, ISFJs are extremely aware of their own
internal feelings, as well as other people's feelings. They do not
usually express their own feelings, keeping things inside. If they are
negative feelings, they may build up inside the ISFJ until they turn
into firm judgments against individuals which are difficult to unseed,
once set. Many ISFJs learn to express themselves, and find outlets for
their powerful emotions.

Just as the ISFJ is not likely to express their feelings, they are also
not likely to let on that they know how others are feeling. However,
they will speak up when they feel another individual really needs help,
and in such cases they can truly help others become aware of their

The ISFJ feels a strong sense of responsibility and duty. They take
their responsibilities very seriously, and can be counted on to follow
through. For this reason, people naturally tend to rely on them. The
ISFJ has a difficult time saying "no" when asked to do something, and
may become over-burdened. In such cases, the ISFJ does not usually
express their difficulties to others, because they intensely dislike
conflict, and because they tend to place other people's needs over their
own. The ISFJ needs to learn to identify, value, and express their own
needs, if they wish to avoid becoming over-worked and taken for granted.

ISFJs need positive feedback from others. In the absence of positive
feedback, or in the face of criticism, the ISFJ gets discouraged, and
may even become depressed. When down on themselves or under great
stress, the ISFJ begins to imagine all of the things that might go
critically wrong in their life. They have strong feelings of inadequacy,
and become convinced that "everything is all wrong", or "I can't do
anything right".

The ISFJ is warm, generous, and dependable. They have many special gifts
to offer, in their sensitivity to others, and their strong ability to
keep things running smoothly. They need to remember to not be overly
critical of themselves, and to give themselves some of the warmth and
love which they freely dispense to others.