Tuesday, July 29, 2008

More Vacation Pics - June 20

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I really don't have time for a decent post though I want to post something to say hello...so here are a few pics from June 20 of our vacation. These are in, you guessed it, Glacier National Park!!! These were taken early one morning on our drive up Going to the Sun Road. I tell you, I never tire of being around this type of scenery. Isn't it gorgeous? I hope to post some bear pics tomorrow (or soon) - as soon as I have a chance to get back to the computer.

I actually have a date tomorrow night so that is exciting!!!

Enjoy the scenery:

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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

P.S. - the last two pics aren't identical, though they look like it. I took sooo many pics of the same scene, many turned out similar. I think I probably took over 100 just of this little scene.

Have a great Tuesday everyone :)

Sunday, July 27, 2008

A completely unexciting post

Pretty much nuthin about nuthin...but truth be told, I'm avoiding paying bills...oh I have a ton of stuff to do, but I'm sitting here at my computer doing what I usually do. Procrastinating. I hate it when I do this. Here it is 3:30 on a Sunday afternoon and I haven't even started what I figured I'd get done yesterday (or two weeks ago)

Anywho, this'll be short cause I don't have much anyway, but I thought I'd share a few exciting things.

Number 1:

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This is what I found on the kitchen cabinet yesterday afternoon. Yea, we don't have trash cans here can you tell? I would think my 13-year old would be trained better, but I guess it is just easier to litter the counter (and floor, etc.) with trash than throw it away. Let me just say, I better not find the chewing gum stuck under my coffee table!! (ha, just kidding - he doesn't do that)

Number 2:

A lot of this has been going on. Relaxing. Yesterday Brandon lay in my bed (with the dog) and watched movies while I dozed for part of the time. We did run a few errands, but we relaxed also. It really is good to have him home.

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Number 3:

A while back, Brandon was playing with his air soft gun (soft pellets) in the house (which I mistakenly hadn't told him not to do) and he busted out one of our track lights high in the ceiling. UGH. I could barely reach it even on the highests of ladders..but I finally got around to replacing it this weekend. I had the hardest time trying to unscrew the darned broken bulb. Stupid me, tried it with no gloves on and guess what? Yep, I cut three of my fingers on my right hand. Stupid. I then put gloves on and finally got it to come out.

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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Today after church we're just lazing around again. It is too hot outside to do anything out there. Brandon is heading with my dad to a fish fry with the church group this evening, but I'm staying here! I guess I should get on to my bill paying. Just wanted to say hello to the internets. :)

Saturday, July 26, 2008

A Wildlife Refuge Video Montage

I think this will be easier to use than the one I posted before. And by the way, this montage features some additional, better pictures than were in the original one I posted. I visited the Wildlife Refuge 4 times this week (July 21 week) - morning, sunrise, and two different sunsets. So, I got a variety of pics. I still have some better shots I want to get as the animals tend to run when they see a human and I want to get some much closer up shots. I'll have to practice and plan it out.

I really like the sunset photos in this one. It was sooo beautiful out there that evening.

And Brandon made it home fine last night - about 9:45 p.m. They had a great time at their camp. They did a lot of mission work, volunteering at food banks and a ranch place where kids ride for therapy. Brandon told me they worked very HARD in the hot sun, digging for hours on end. Hmmm...sounds like the book "Holes" - ha ha. Anyway, he said it was great, but a lot of work. The last day they got to enjoy going to White Water Bay in Oklahoma City. So, he came home tired and sunburned.

We slept in this morning. That felt good. Of course sleeping in only meant I slept until 7;15 or so, but it felt good to just lie there and stare at the wall without having to rush somewhere or to get ready. We're just hanging out today, trying to get his school supply list in order. Hope everyone is having a great weekend.

Oh yea, and I have had a couple of dates from the internet dating thing. It is going well. At least, I got a little activity out of it. It is too early to tell for sure, but it looks like it might be promising :)

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Wildlife Refuge Shots

*Another note - I removed the montage from here and posted it in the next post because I added to it and because it was auto playing (in both places) with the song....so sorry if you are looking for the video...check out my July 26 post.

*Well, it appears it works, but it is too wide for my template. I don't know how to fix that cause I only cut and paste the html code from the onetruemedia site. Maybe some of you out there can help me? In the meantime, I think you can still see most of the pics....

OK, I hope this works. The above photos were taken last night at a local Wildlife Refuge. I have been there before, but I really don't know my way around that well. A friend of mine who knows the place very, very well took me out there to hike and to hopefully get some good shots. I got some fairly good ones. I actually plan on going out there bright and early tomorrow morning (before work) at the crack of dawn, to try to get some sun rise pictures. Wish me luck on that!

I cannot BELIEVE how busy it has been since Brandon has been gone. Remember how I told you I did the Singles deal on a trial basis? Well, seems to have turned out really good. I got a lot of responses, which shocked me actually and I'm talking to several different people and we will see what develops. Part of me thinks "I don't have time for this!!!" but we'll see. Trying to keep up with all that can be exhausting. My trial subscription ended but it was really worth it as I have already met some nice people (friends but could turn into something else...who knows).

In other news, I went and weighed in today at Weight Watchers and guess what??? 2.4 more pounds lost!! That means I've lost 7 pounds in the three weeks I've been back. About 4 more and I'm at my goal weight!!! 2 more and I'm back where I was hovering. I really hope to lose about 10 more but we shall see. I am working out a lot (went to two classes last night after work) and that is also what is taking up a lot of my time. Between working full time, working out, trying to keep everyone emailed and updated and keep up with Bloglines (which is a losing battle!!!) and keep all my ducks in a row. Well, lets just say I'm not getting enough sleep!!! Calgon, take me away.

It is all good though. Things are going well.

I have a bunch more vacation pics to post but I have to find the time to write the posts. I'll get around to it.

In the meantime, enjoy these pics.

Monday, July 21, 2008

Best Shot Monday

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Here is my Best Shot Monday photo. This was taken in April when I visited the Ft. Worth Botanical Gardens. I could barely even see this little guy on the flower until I got out my Macro Lens. I just love taking photos with the macro lens as it opens up a whole new world!!

By the way, the watermark on this is my old blog site, which is private (in case you are wondering...)

For more great Best Shot Monday photos, check out TRACY'S SITE

Brief synopsis of our weekend:

Brandon arrived home on Friday evening. Yea!!! It was great to see him. This boy of mine, who is now taller than I.

Saturday I started out the morning with an approximately 14 mile bike ride (yeh me!) with a friend of mine. Since I don't think I can fit my bicycle in my car, he came to pick it up in his truck. We saw all manner of wildlife on this ride and it was totally, totally awesome. We saw a herd of wild hogs, a BEAVER crossing the road and swimming in the water, buzzards, geese, deer, a bald eagle, a beautiful full moon and lots of sunflowers. And just pretty scenery. I loved it. OK, so my butt was very sore, but hey, you can't have everything. What a workout. I'm hoping to get to do that really soon. Then, I got home about the time Brandon was waking up and cooked a big breakfast of pancakes and bacon. YUM!

Saturday we ran errands and hung out. Saturday night we went to see The Dark Knight. It was good. WE both enjoyed it. Oh, Friday afternoon I went to see Mama Mia and I loved it. Very cute and great music!

Sunday was church of course and packing up Brandon for his camp. I did make him mow the yard tonight.

Oh, and get this. I cooked a nice dinner tonight (which I seldom do) - chicken fajitas. Homeade pico-de-gallo and homeade flower tortillas along with some very tasty chicken fajita meat I cooked on the grill. I had a bunch of it that I cooked and we ate less than half of it. I had a big chunk of meat left that I was going to use for lunches this week. Yum. I saw WAS.

I come back here to the computer to type up a lovely post for you all, and I hear a clatter in the other room. I thought that Brandon was throwing his dish in the sink, like he is prone to do so I get up to say "put that in the dishwasher" and I realize he isn't in the kitchen at all. My container that had the meat in it is EMPTY. Empty I tell you!! That dog ate the rest of my chicken!! I was so ticked. She got right up on the cabinet and ate it all. GRRRR

On a totally different subject, at church this morning, I lean over to Brandon to ask him something and realize something is amis. What is wrong with this picture?

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Yep, he had his shirt on inside out sitting in the pew in church. I leaned over and whispered to him to let him know. He immediately slipped out and changed. How funny is that? I'm sure the people behind him had noticed and if they were observant, probably noticed that he changed it. oops.

Friday, July 18, 2008

June 19 - Hike and about a Bear

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Ok, so back to our vacation. I told you I had a lot of photos...and I still have about oh, 10 posts or so with what I consider the best or the most interesting pics.

This was at Glacier National Park. We started out that morning and drove up one side as far as we could. Remember, I told you the Going-to-the-Sun Road was closed part way up so we could only drive the 12 miles out of like 50. So, we came to the end and they had this walking trail that was actually made for a wheelchair. It was ramped the entire way with a wood walkway. Really cool. It was about a total of a mile. My mom doesn't usually go on the walks with us, but she went this time. I was glad. She doesn't get to hike with us much. She broke her ankle in three places a few years ago and since then she just isn't able to walk very far, especially on any ground that isn't flat. She is afraid she might fall again. Don't blame her.

Anyway, we were on this trail fairly early in the morning and there weren't any other people directly near us. We came to a bridge over a beautiful waterfall. We were all about taking pictures there so we hung out a bit. My mom was crossing the bridge and my sister was withher. My son and I had just posed for my dad to take a picture of us (he was at the start of the bridge) when we heard this crackling of the leaves. We looked to the left and from underneath where we had been standing, crawled a BEAR!!! We hadn't seen one on our trip so far and we were hoping we would see one (though not so close). Unfortunately, Brandon's reaction was to RUN and scream as fast as he couold to the other end of the bridge. It freaked us all out. I got him to quietly come back and we watched the bear as it plodded along right in front of us.

Dad was holding his camera up taking pictures and I was right behind him, trying to also get pictures. My hands were shaking and I was simultaneously freaking out and excited.

Then, the bear stops walking along the path AWAY from us and actually looks at my dad (or at us) and turns to face us (double gulp) and starts walking toward us. (I'm really wishin I wore my Depends about now...) and below is the picture I got of it coming our way. This bear comes towards us and it not very far from us and just stops and looks at my dad. (dad is kind of small so maybe he was thinking "not worth lunch" or something. I don't know, but I was freaking...trying to tell my dad (in a low voice) come ON dad, lets go!!!

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DAd just stood there taking its picture. He got a pretty good one, though it is fuzzy, like all mine. But, can you believe how close this bear was? The below picture is the one my dad got. Tell me this isn't dangerous!! We weren't in a zoo and there were no fences. This bear was not that far from us.

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And then, just as quickly as it came to look at us, it turned the other way and walked off - up the path to the left of the waterfall and on its way.

So, that was a huge amount of excitement for us. We laughed about it a bit later because my mom is deathly afraid of heights and bridges and she was really not wanting to go across the bridge. It was funny, she has NO PROBLEM getting across that bridge when the bear showed its face. I mean, I've never seen my mother move that fast. We laughed about that after the fact!

So after that, we continued along the path. We then came to a place that went uphill to another couple of trailheads. Brandon and my dad went up to check it out. Mom and Amy decided to head back to the car. So, I joined my dad. I saw that the sign said the shortest trail was a 2 mile hike!!! I don't think they realized that. So, we set off on this trail. We ended up hiking the whole thing - so we hiked like 5 miles - 2 miles there, 2 miles back and the other part of the trail was a mile. Man, was I tired after that!!! So, these next shots are some of the scenery we saw along the way.

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I thought these tree roots looked cool.

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I loved how the sunlight played in these trees - it almost looked surreal. Doesn't this look like what the forest might have looked like in Little Red Riding Hood or some other fairy tale?

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We also would come out along the river every so often...the trail would wind around -coming by the river frequently.

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My pictures don't do the beauty of it justice.

The hike was supposed to lead us to a lake so we were anxious to see what the view looked like after our long hike. Here it was. It was indeed beautiful!

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I wish I had had weeks to spend in Glacier. There are hundreds of trails similar to this one - each reaching another beautiful venue or scenic vista. I never tire of seeing God's creation.

Well, that is it for this day's pictures. I hope you've enjoyed our day.

I should mention that Brandon will be coming home tomorrow!!! He'll be here for the weekend and then Monday he is off to church camp until Friday. We have plans to go see The Dark Knight this weekend, so that should be good. I also plan to go see Mama Mia tomorrow afternoon before Brandon gets here. Popcorn here I come!!

Everyone have a great weekend.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


I’m completely caught up with my Bloglines account. I’ve looked at all the 70 some blogs I have registered with Bloglines and at least skimmed through most of their posts. My account is “clear” at this very second so NOBODY and I mean NOBODY post anything for about a week, k?

That way, I can get caught up with other stuff in my house besides the blogging.

Ha. Like that is going to happen. But, it does feel pretty cathartic to finally feel “caught up”, at least with that. And I know it won’t last for more than what, 30 seconds or so before SOMEONE, some evil someone decides to post a picture of their kiddo or tell the internet about their day. Curses.

Ya know, if you keep up with reading blogs daily, it really isn’t so bad. But, for some reason, I just can’t seem to do that and I also can’t seem to stop apologizing for not doing so. Someone pass me one of those “blogging without guilt” buttons! Seriously, I hope to keep up with everyone, at least for a while, but I know me and my life and it won’t be long before Mr. Obligation is knocking at my door and more important things take precedence, like oh, my son and that little thing called sleeping.

Speaking of time suckers, two nights ago, I decided to try something out. Internet dating. I won’t lie, I’ve tried internet dating in the past using a variety of services. Met some really nice people and some totally losers too, but I just got burned out on it. I haven’t dated anyone in quite some time so I thought what the heck, why not try it again. So, I am. I’m basically finding out this is another time sucker. Emphasis on the word SUCKER. We shall see how it goes, but the service I’m trying is allowing me to try it for a few days for free. Once I pass the free mark (next week sometime), I’ll then have to pay if I want to continue. And I’m not sure I’m going to. I might. Or I might not.

I am actually having quite a bit of activity on my “profile” so that is a good thing. And I’ve had a couple people email me. I guess I’m just not THAT excited about it because I’ve tried it before and all that emailing and typing and question answering and asking and pouring your heart and soul out and then nothing. Well, it is exhausting. And I guess that is why I haven’t done it in some time. It seems rather futile and hopeless. Same ole people out there (most of them losers) looking for love. BUT on a positive note, there has to be some good men still left out there or so I’m hoping.

And when Brandon’s school starts back and the summer winds down, I doubt I’ll have any free time to keep up with it, but like I said, I may not even join. What about ya’ll out there? Have you ever tried internet dating and if so, did you enjoy it? Have any horror stories or experiences you wish to share, good or bad? I’d love to hear them.

On a final note, I weighed in at WW on Tuesday and I lost another POUND. So, I’ve now lost 4.6 pounds in 2 weeks so that is good! I still am wanting to lose about 13 more pounds ideally (and more if I can) but at least I’m not gaining for now.

P.S. - the picture I posted is totally unrelated to this post. I just feel funny posting without a picture!!! This picture was of the North Carolina countryside on our vacation in June of 2006. I just loved this picture with the red barn and the view from our vista. This was taken with my old Canon, before I got the REbel Xti.

How To Cool Off In A Texas Summer

OK, Kailani of An Island Life is having a neat writing contest. For all the details visit HERE. I'm kind of late entering as I've been busy with other things (like catching up on blog reading!) so I hope this isn't too late. (I believe I have until midnight tonight)

First, take two mischevious little boys who want to cool off and have some fun. (See picture below)

Second, get a bunch of water balloons.

Third, have them strip down as much as possible without being indecent (the boys, not the balloons).

Fourth, go outside (this one is very important)

Fifth, Fill up the balloons with water.

Sixth, Take the filled balloons very carefully to the agreed upon place for the fun to begin.

Note that squeezing the balloon like this before you get ready is NOT recommended.
Also note that zipping up your pants is probably a good idea also.

Seventh, get your friend to stand directly under the said water balloon while you stand ready with a nail or any other sharp object.

Eighth, insert sharp object into balloon and wallaa, you have a way to enjoy a Texas Summer!!!

Alternatively, if you don't have any friends, you may do it to yourself!

Finally, if you are feeling really adventurous, you can do it multiple people at the same time!

What a great way to enjoy a Texas summer. (by the way, these were taken a couple of years ago when Brandon was quite a bit smaller!!!)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

June 19 pictures - Mountains and Waterfalls

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Time for more vacation photos. These are as you guessed, from June 19. This day we drove to Waterton Lakes National Park (spent a couple of hours) and then drove on Going to the Sun Road for as much as we could of it.

Going to the Sun Road is this awesome road that spans 40 miles from West Glacier to St. Mary, and it goes right through the heart of the park. However, because of the high elevations, and because it was cut right through the mountain, there are many parts of the year that the road is closed. Unfortunately, the road hadn't even opened for the season while we were there. So...you could go about 12 miles up on side and 13 miles up the other..but then you had to turn back around and go back down the way you came.

The parts we did get to see were breathtaking. I was very disapointed we did not get to drive the whole way. I have heard it was an experience like no other. They said on the very top of the mountain, around Logan's Pass, that the snow drifts were at least 100 feet high!! Also, they have lots of avalanches and so the road was just not passable yet. It was hard to imagine that only a few miles up, these conditions existed, because where we were was very temperate and beautiful.

These first few pics were of one of the stops on Going to the Sun Road. I can't remember which one exactly. But aren't they beautiful? The one below is of course, my dad. I thought it turned out good. Actually, I'm kind of disapointed in the quality of these pics displaying on here. The actual photo itself is much superior to the version being shown. I think this is a drop shots thing. Not sure. These photos appear sort of blurry or grainy to me and the actual photos just aren't like that. I hope it isn't too distracting.

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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

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As we drove along, I saw these pretty flowers that I had to get a shot of.

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These next two shots were of one of the most beautiful scenes I think. The below picture is of St. Mary Lake. In the second shot below, the island in the middle is called "Wild Goose Island".
This was what we saw at the BOTTOM of Going to the Sun Road. Can you imagine what scenery would have been waiting for us at the top? I can't imagine.

In fact, going back to Glacier National Park and traveling Going to the Sun Road (the whole way) is one thing that I am putting on my "Bucket List" or things I want to do before I die. It was just breathtaking.

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Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

Photo Sharing - Video Sharing - Photo Printing - Photo Books

The last couple of pictures were of a lake that was on the Going to the Sun Road. The water was crystal clear and the way you could see the rocks through the glass-like water was just so cool.

Going to the Sun Road and the scenery we saw in the day and a half we were at Glacier National park was probably the favorite part of our entire trip. I will leave you with a narrative from the back of a book I purchased called "Going to the Sun Road by C.W. Guthrie. The following is from the back cover:

"Traveling Glacier National Park's Going-to-the-Sun Road is an experience like no other.

Crafted over a steep and unforgiving route - one that some thought impossible - the Going-to-the-Sun-Road spans 50 miles from West Glacier to St. Mary, taking travelers through the heart of Glacier. This marvel of engineering offers visitors some of the most awe-inspiring views in the world as it traverses the Garden Wall, with its 1,000 foot drops, crosses the Continental Divide at 6,646-foot Logan Pass, and winds its way through the magnificent mountains and along the shore of St. Mary Lake.

Park officials, landscape architects, construction engineers, and countless laborers toiled nearly 20 years to carve a road that least damaged the magnificent country it crosses - something that had never been done before on so large a scale. It was designed to harmonize with the landscape in such a way as to be almost unseen.

One of the most scenic highways in the world, the Going-to-the-Sun-Road set the standard for all national parks. It is the best of its kind."