Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Quaking in my Espadrilles

By most accounts, the Great East Coast Quake of 2011 wasn't a source of widespread devastation. It was considered a moderate and nearly unprecedented quake for this area according to the experts and a huge inconvenience for the locals. This is pretty much the extent of our damage.

Mechagodzilla is obviously more awesome than Regular Godzilla. But it wasn't all bad. I'm totally convinced the quake cured my garbage disposal. After a week of malfunctioning, it mysteriously began to work again after the quake.

A lot of the damage was emotional. I was sitting by a set of second-story windows waiting for Isaiah's therapy session to conclude. When the shaking started, I thought it was a central a/c unit about to blow. But the shaking grew more intense and the rumbling grew louder. I looked out of the window expecting to see a truck, a train, a plane...something. But nothing. It was a gorgeous, sunny day.

I rode out the quake petrified. Wanting to run, but not being able to move. In a flash,I thought about death. The office building was shaking and swaying in such an unfamiliar way that I knew it couldn't be anything good. I did not want to die - maybe it was the shock - but there was a peace surrounding me. I just wanted my kids to be OK.

No cell phone calls could go out immediately afterward, but I found out from my sister in Arizona via Facebook that my mom and Savannah were shaken, but fine. And my mom is apparently in the wrong professional. She should have pursued a career in body guarding. Or in the NFL. She didn't realize what was happening, but she knew she had to protect her granddaughter. So naturally, she tackled her. Mariah had been evacuated from her school and came home upset and concerned about possible aftershocks. We are still a bit unsettled over yesterday's events, so I was relieved they cancelled school today.

The earthquake gave me a crash course and what I know for sure is:

Earthquakes can fix things around the house

I am not truly afraid to die

My mother has a future with the Washington Redskins

Friday, August 19, 2011

Brownies Nation

Yes. Yes they do.

*Special shout-out to Jen in Cali for spotting this!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Leggo my Eggo. Seriously.

When people hear the term "comfort food", they automatically think potatoes, mac & cheese...typical carbs. Somehow, around the 24-pack-a-week mark, frozen waffles went from lovely, occasional breakfast fare to my drug of choice.

What can I say? They are perfect. Warm, light, and toasty. Crispy and tender all at once. Their sole purpose is to bring me happiness. Oh ~ and poundage. My clothes have been shrinking ever since I arrived at Waffletopia. But that's OK. The view from Celeryville is overrated anyway.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Be Cuz of Faith

Here I am on First Cousins' Weekend with my cousin, Michele ~ Master of Library Science. Thanks to her amazing accomplishments, she and her family have taken a huge leap of faith. Uprooting their lives and relocating, we are now not only emotionally close, but physically as well. God is good.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

The Tortoise in My Hair

One unnerving thing about living in a metropolitan area is the nonstop pace. Everyone is always on the go and quickly. Not exactly ideal conditions for a turtle attempting to cross a street.

But last Wednesday was one turtle's Lucky Day. That was the day that I happened to be driving down said street and noticed what I initially thought was a dead leaf resting between the bright orange parallel lines.

I've seen squashed turtles before. There was a big one at the end of my driveway just last month. I couldn't do anything to save him, but I was sure I could do something for that brown leaf that - upon further investigation - turned out to be a strong-willed (if not GPS-challenged) baby Diamondback Terrapin.

Instead of relocating him right away, we decided to take him home. We created a makeshift terrarium and an acceptable Baby Turtle diet. After his initial reluctance to eat (chalk it up to shell shock - sorry!), I was as delighted as a first time mom to see his Turtle Turds in the box the next morning. And by then he even had a name: "Crush". Partial Disney character; partial his lack of being so.

He has since been adopted by my brother and his family and renamed "Horatio", which is, quite honestly, easier to remember and much more suitable to that innocent, wise-looking face of his. My nieces are excited about their newest addition (joining his Beta sibling). I'm just excited I'm not any closer to ending up on an Animal Planet hoarding special.

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Too Blessed to be Distressed

There's a scene in the original "Shrek" movie after he frees Princess Fiona and they are confronted in the forest by the king's henchmen. But instead of getting kidnapped, Fiona proceeds to kick their butts - as Shrek and Donkey look on in amazement.

I can appreciate that scene. Too often females are portrayed as helpless, weak, and poor decision makers (who runs from a killer in high heels?!)

There have been times in my life when I have wanted to be delivered from an unpleasant or even dangerous situation. Sometimes I want a Hero. But more often than not - I want to find my own way out. To see if I have the level head and courage to make good decisions. Even if it's the decision that I am in over my head. Like last weekend when my van battery died while on an outing with the kids.

When I realized I had drained the battery, I sat. Sat and thought. That's all I could do. J was out of town. And I really didn't want to feel like he had to save me, anyway. Then I remembered my Auto Membership. They could get me jump-started in no time. It wasn't like I was admitting I was in distress. Just ill-equipped to handle that particular situation. Make no mistake: I didn't need to be "rescued".

It was just by sheer coincidence that the company they sent out had the logo "Rescue Auto" blazoned across the back window. Oh well. Whatever makes them feel good about themselves.

I've decided to invest in one of those portable battery chargers. Who knows, I just might end up someone else's unexpected, but very welcomed Knight-in-Shining-Armour.

Friday, August 5, 2011

Waiting for Boaz

For all you single ladies who are in such a hurry to find someone, here's a quick piece of biblical advice: Ruth patiently waited for her mate Boaz. While waiting on YOUR Boaz, don't settle for ANY of his relatives: Broke-az, Po-az, Lyin-az, Cheatin-az, Dumb-az, Cheap-az, Lockedup-az, Goodfornothin-az, Lazy-az or Married-az...and especially his 3rd Cousin Beatinyo-az!

-Bill Johnson

Thursday, August 4, 2011



My maternal grandmother had 26 grandchildren. Almost all were able to gather this past weekend for our first ever "First Cousins" reunion. It was 3 days of activities designed to reconnect, reminisce, and most importantly - eat. It was the first time most of us had been together since Grannannie passed away a little over 2 years ago. We took the time to introduce our families and welcome my new sister-in-law. Thanks to our living overseas off-and-on for years, some hadn't seen my girls since they were babies. Most hadn't even met Isaiah.

But the love and laughter that enveloped us practically made up for lost time. They expressed more than just their love for the kids and me. They showed their support. Reassured me and rallied around me like a "Love Intervention". They reminded me of my special place not just in our Family, but in our World.

The love and laughter live on