Friday, July 08, 2005


Today we went with friends to a sprayscape and had so much fun! The Prawn and the other little one would only go through when the stuff was cycling through the low-spray setting, but the others got soaked and ran through everything. Then we moved on to a nearby sand pit, and after that to the huge play structure where my friend proceeded to blow the minds of some cute Korean kids by speaking Korean to them. :o) It was awesome weather - sunny with a bit of breeze, and off to one side thunderstorms were booming and lightning was flashing but they all passed by with a good berth. We brought food and made a day of it and had so much fun. I'm sure we'll be back soon.

Right now I'm in the midst of making a pie crust to fill with Snow Ghost pudding. I'm determined to make a stinking pie crust if it kills me. (So far the few I've made have not been what you'd call great.) If this recipe works, I'll post it. So far, I'm not too impressed with the instructions, which say to use a KitchenAid blender on pulse to mix the dough. All it did to MY KitchenAid blender was jam up the works. Right now the 2 crusts are "resting" in the fridge. I guess pie crusts have a well deserved reputation for being high-maintenance. But the crumbs I scraped out of the blender tasted awfully good (if you like that sort of thing, that is) so I haven't lost all faith in this recipe. Next comes the arm-breaking task of stirring that pudding for what seems like weeks.

I have a bruise (I say, "bruise" but there's no mark yet) inside my left elbow that is spectacularly painful. I didn't discover it 'til I was toweling off after my bath last night. If it does start showing it should be rather technicolour. But I do recall that it was a great block. Of course I re-smashed my left shin and re-wrenched my right ankle, so I'm lopsided when I walk.

On June 20th, daughter #2 was evicted from her room. She was hoping to earn it back by July, but alas, her putting-away skills were not strengthened by the experience and she's now been evicted from squatting in her brother's room. (#1 has also lost squatting rights there since they both mess it up and leave it that way. Sigh. Not sure what it's gonna take...) On the other hand, her old room (now #4's room) has never looked better! (helped a great deal by the fact that #4 still Family Beds with us, LOL!)

We're counting down the days to Celtic Fest on the 16th. This time we'll have to make it back to the kids' area in time for them to make some of the cool crafts. Navan, my sister's group, will be singing there a few times, so of course we'll catch a performance and take lots of pics for my mom. I wonder if I can get inspired enough to whip up something Celtic for the kids to wear...

We found out a bit about a pool about 20 mins from our house that has a fabulous play area and is all indoors so we can swim year round. We may have to buy a year-long pass!! I'm taking the kids to check it out next week.

I think my pie crust is nearly done with its beauty rest, so I'm off to bake it. Wish me luck!

In which another appliance bites the dust

It's my dryer this time. Much better than having no washer, but still, WAAAAH! I had all the laundry out today flapping nicely in the breeze, went to TKD for 3 hours (big kid class, our class and our sparring) and about 10 mins before we left the do-jang, the heavens opened up and commenced pouring on my laundry. Phooey! Did I anger the Laundry Gods somehow?? Maybe I could offer some kind of stained sacrifice... ;o)

In other news, we went to the bi-annual tournament in June. I always feel like a bit of a party crasher at the Mason's temple or something, since I'm always the only woman there in my age group. So I had to fight 3 men, but I won all my matches and took a gold in forms, too, so I'm satisfied with my performance. This was Gordy's first tournament. He took 3rd in forms and first in sparring! He had to fight a friend from the do-jang as well as 2 little black belts who were really good! But fortunately, when the medals were awarded in sparring, they separated the black belts from the blue belts, so Gordy got good experience in sparring but ony competed for POINTS against the other blue belt.

Today the master's wife brought a friend from Nigeria to spar us. He's a Bo Dan (temporary balck belt) and very good. He was challenging, and fun to spar. They're going to try to have him come to sparring at least once a month, which will really be great for us. He has a beautiful jumping round kick that I have to try to imitate! (I got clobbered with it a bunch of times, LOL!)

We've been busy lately! Summer brings so many great opportunities! Today we went to the park to picnic and play with friends and tomorrow we're meeting at the library and then going to a sprayscape. That should be a blast! We went swimming at a local lake last Friday and the kids loved it. On Saturday we hit the commissary and BX/PX and loaded up on groceries. I loaded a bunch of frozen and fridge stuff into our insulated bag and promptly left it in the parking lot. We figured it out when we got home, and called, and were VERY grateful to find out that someone had taken it right in and they'd typed up a list of everything in there and separated it into the fridge and freezer and were holding it for us!! Since we didn't have time to go get it before closing, we went up on Sunday and took advantage of the LOVELY base pool, then retrieved our bag of goodies and had a picnic in the park. It turned out to be a perfect day, and all because I was a bonehead, so I guess that's serendipity for you. :o)

I finally finished "Eyes of the Tailless Animals" (with much weeping - it was so depressing, I'd been putting off reading it) and am reading "Kite Runner" and "Out of the Blue," both of which are very interesting. I read "Labyrinth of Evil" (Star Wars book - remember I'm a total SW geek) last week and liked the story but not so much the writing style.

Mollusc and Sluggie have new friends at the do-jang who look like their twins separated at birth. :o) The oldest girl (Mollusc's twin) is a 2nd degree black belt and the next younger (Sluggie's twin) is a 1st degree. They have a 7 year old sister who's a green belt and is a perfect match for Gordy in sparring. They're a really neat family and I'm looking forward to getting to know them better. The oldest hates sparring, just like Mollusc (though she does a great job and kicks a lot, so I hope Mollusc will learn from her) and the next one loves it just like Sluggie.

The Prawn has officially started classes. I help teach morning Little Kid classes and John helps with evening Big Kid classes in exchange for her tuition. (Hooray, cuz we had no more money to spare!) She's doing really well!

I finally mailed off a story to a publisher for the first time in a long time. Now to work on another instead of just waiting!!

Cheeto (the raccoon) has been back since it got warm. The other night she brought her 5 babies. Soooooooooo cute! She still loves Trader Joe's caramel corn and cheetos.

We found a neat softshelled turtle (BIG) outside a store in Brighton a couple of weeks ago. We were going to Wildernest next door next, so we asked the lady there what to do with her. (She rehabilitates baby bats, and knows all about birds and all kinds of wildlife.) She knew the river that the turtle had likely come from, so we took the turtle there. A guy in the store turned out to be a photographer with his AWESOME camera there with him. He was so excited to see the turtle because he didn't have any pics of that kind yet, so he asked if he could take our pic with her, and then get some natural shots before she returned to the river. He mailed us a great 5X7!

On the sewing front, I've done a couple of skirts and have WORN them. (gasp!) Next projects are some birthday things for Sluggie. (picnic set a la Magic Cabin, and a little zippered cosmetic case among other things) The kids are soooo excited that Yi-Yi will be here soon for the Saline Celtic Fest and Sluggie's birthday!

I've returned to jewelry-making lately and have sold a couple more pieces. I need to list some more goodies that I have in stock.

I found a really weird website trashing C.S. Lewis's books and was pretty sure it was a farce because the guy's website contains one of the words he criticizes Lewis for using. I emailed in good humour, and the guy REALLY took offense and wrote me a really scathing and sarcastic reply, signed "In Christ Jesus." I was really confused at that point, because that's just what you'd expect a non-Christian to do in keeping up the ruse, and certainly not what you'd expect a Christian to do (not the closing, but the hateful content of the email,) but I was a *little* uncertain at the same time. He wrote another nasty email and I Googled his name, only to learn he was a PASTOR! Good grief!!! I'm proud to say I kept my replies pleasant and I hope what I said will help him take a look at himself from the outside in, but I doubt that a person like that can be tempted to change his ways or even consider that he might ever have acted badly. Sigh - the nastiest emails I've ever gotten, and they're from a pastor. He's exactly the sort of person that gives us all such a bad reputation. If you go to the Landover Baptist Church site (which, thank goodness IS a farce!) you'll get a taste of what the guy was like. And yet still I protect him by not posting his name and emails and site. How nice am I? (pats self on back, LOL!)

Once again it's time to soak away the muscular aches and the bruises. More later!