Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Clay Play

The other day I went to Ben Franklin's and bought some Sculpey clay. Tonight the boys and I sat down together and made some stuff. It's baking now, so when it's all done I plan on taking some pictures. If I can get the printer to recognize my camera card, I'll post some here.

No close encounters of the vehicular kind lately and no news from the insurance company. Oh well...

Monday, July 23, 2007


I don't know what else to entitle this entry. Tonight I picked up D and his friend from a youth center in downtown at 10:00. The boys had a good time and we were talking about scouts and swimming plans as I drove the friend home.

He lives off Route 50 east of town, so it's a little ways out. Here Route 50 is a divided highway, with a grassy wide median and two lanes in both directions.

While I was in the process of passing a pick-up towing a horse trailer, I look ahead of me and see headlights - headlights in my lane - coming straight for us. We were maybe five car lengths apart. Not much time to react at all, but I moved over to the right. I wasn't really sure the pick-up wouldn't be hit, but it was still a better option than the head-on into the car headed right for us. I didn't hit the pick-up, and the wrong-way car began to go into the grassy median when he was about two car lengths away. In my rearview mirror, I could see him go into the next paved shortcut to the other side.

Wow - that was something else. I'm still a little shaky and it's been about 30 minutes. The boys and I joked and talked about it - but when we pulled into the friend's driveway, D prayed and thanked God for sparing us.

I don't even know what else to say. But there you are.

Sunday, July 22, 2007

The Secret

I'm gonna let you all in on a secret: I need to lose weight! LOL - I know that those of you who know me know that, and those who don't know me personally - you've probably already figured it out.

Anyway - that's not really the secret. The secret is my goal: my husband and I are celebrating our 20th anniversary in December of this year. It is my goal to get back into my wedding dress.

Now, I'm not going to tell you how much I weigh and how much I have to lose - why? Well, just because. But I will say this: it's going to take exercising three times a week and eating right. Not rocket science - I just need to rebuild habits I put to the wayside about a year and a half ago.

Tonight after church, I found an accountability partner. We are going to set goals - not weight goals - but behavior goals. My goals this week are to exercise three times (at least 30 minutes each) and to not eat after dinner. I know I can do it if I set my mind to it and with God's help.

Tomorrow I will work on insurance stuff. What fun!

Hope you had a great Sunday!

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Almost Heaven, West Virginia...

Well, West Virginia is not very far away from us, but my mother-in-law and I are traveling to Clarksburg, West Virginia, which is about five hours away. We are leaving tomorrow morning for a baby shower on Saturday. My mother-in-law's niece is having twin girls.

I hope to do some geocaching while I'm gone. I'm basically going because she does not like to drive long distances like that. So we'll do a little road trip and have a good time.

I took my van in to the insurance adjuster for the OTHER guy. Apparently, there is some dispute over the accident so they were not ready to accept liability in the accident. The guy pulled out in front of me, for goodness' sake! I think the problem stems from the deputy who is a part-time guy. I don't think he ticketed the other driver. We may have to fight to get the van fixed. What fun!

Hope your weekend is going to be filled with great things!

Tuesday, July 17, 2007


Well, I wasn't here on Monday, but now I'm ready for the rest of the story. Hope you are!

The day after I prayed about not using my signing skills, I was talking to the first grade teacher. She knew I knew sign language. I had even taught a class at school. So she stops me in the hall and says (now, remember: this is the very next day!): "We have a deaf couple that want to come to church this Sunday (Mother's Day.) Can you interpret?"

Now, my mind went through quickly all the reasons why this was NOT a good idea: it had been a long time since I interpreted, I wanted to start small, I can't remember much - I've never even met them! But those were quick thoughts. I wasn't stupid (and I'm mostly not now.) When God plops an answered prayer right down in front of you, you're not supposed to pass it up.

And so, I went. Yes, my skills were rusty, and I had to do a lot of fingerspelling. But the couple was very patient, their little baby was as cute as a button, and after service, the woman asked me, "Are you going to be here every Sunday?"

Well, what do you say? I was actively involved in my own church in my hometown. This church was in West Virginia, 20 miles north. My family was involved at the other church; what was I to say?

So, of course I said yes. After a year of attending the worship service at the church in Winchester, I would hop into the car and drive 30 minutes to interpret at the service in the church in West Virginia (Cedar Grove.) After about a year of that, our family decided that God wanted us all to be an active part of Cedar Grove, and that's where we've been for five years. We've watched the little boy grow up, saw the addition of another member to their family. I still mess up and they are still so patient with me.

Sooooooo, what was it that goes around and comes around?

On Sunday, I stood in the hallway outside the auditorium. To my left, I see a 17 year old girl, with two college sign language classes, talking to the mom. Next to them stood the preacher's wife, talking to the dad.

I am so in awe of God that He would let me be a part of this circle. Hands are reaching out in love to share the gospel of Jesus and to share the hearts of the people. That's what it's all about.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

What Goes Around, Comes Around

It's story time, friends, so sit back and enjoy a walk down Momma Marauder's memory lane.

Sign language was always interesting to me. During my junior high and high school years, I volunteered at a day camp for kids with developmental disabilities. We used sign with some of the kids and I learned the basics: yes, no, sit, stand and the ever-important bathroom sign.

Later on, when I was in college, a fellow from the local Bible College came to our church. He started a Signing Choir, where we used taped music (that's like CD's today, kids!) and did sign language to the lyrics. We signed at our church and some local churches in Cincinnati. We even traveled some - with one trip to Michigan and a short excursion into Canada so we could call ourselves an "international" signing choir.

We had a lot of fun and learned a lot of sign language back then. The choir had been established for about 6 months when a family in our church found out their toddler son (I think he was two at the time) was profoundly deaf. How cool is it that God had put the ministry of the signing choir in place before the need was there? This little boy and his family were surrounding by hearing and deaf people who knew or were learning sign language.

The church went on to establish a strong deaf ministry and now there is a deaf church that meets separately in the same building. The family went on to be highly involved in ministry with the deaf. Here is a link to their website:

The church is where I interpreted for the first time (4s and 5s Sunday School class) and learned so much from deaf individuals and hearing as well. They were patient with my mistakes and helped me develop a life-long skill that I can use to serve God.

Fast forward many years: I had used my sign language skills very seldom in the ensuing years. I taught school and was busy with family and church activities.

When we moved to Virginia, I used sign language with one of my students, but it was very basic. I felt what skills I had were fading. Then I moved to my current school, Mountain View Christian Academy. Here, I met a teacher whose husband preached in a church in neighboring West Virginia.

One evening during my prayer time, I asked God to show me what He would have me do with the sign language - give it up, use it to honor Him in service somehow. I didn't know what to do. But He did. :)

This post is getting long, so I will finish the story tomorrow. Stay tuned!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Solo Geocaching Excursion

Well, after yesterday, I decided I wanted to go out and do something fun. So geocaching it was. I made my list of 9 caches I wanted to go and find. And off I went.

Now, if you don't know about geocaching, you can go to the website and read about it. But I thought I'd list some benefits of geocaching here:

- free sweat, no membership fee required!
- wild raspberries, all you care to eat!
- strange looks as you crawl under the bench
- learning about small towns and seeing places you've never seen before

- ticks (I only found one little fellow this time)
- poison ivy (made sure I wiped off with hand sanitizer this time. The rash that is mostly on my left arm is healing up now)
- gas (no, not from lunch)
- getting lost (okay, I only had to wander five minutes to find my way out of the woods)

Usually, geocaching is a family affair for us, but this was a solo day for me. I found three out of the nine I looked for - it would have been more if I had more eyes with me. But it was fun to get out and enjoy the weather. Boy, was it hot! But I got my exercise!

My shoulder is feeling fine today from the accident. I guess I will get in touch with the claims adjuster on Monday to see what they're going to do about the van. We just had liability insurance, but the other guy should pay for our van.

J is camping again tonight with the scouts and it's kind of quiet here. My mother in law has already washed the dishes, so I think I'll watch some TV.

I might be singing with the praise team in church tomorrow. I love to sing. We are going to teach the congregation how to sign one of the praise songs, so that when our deaf couple come back from vacation next week, they will see the entire church signing with them on one song. How cool is that?

Hope you all have a great evening!

Friday, July 13, 2007

Third Time's a Charm

Three blog posts in one day? Oh well, that's okay.

Well, today was interesting. The morning was filled with a run to the dump and waiting for the cable guy. After Larry the cable guy came (just kidding - his name wasn't Larry - but you knew that,) I went to the doctor's. Ohhh, what fun! After being told once again to get my blood sugar down and exercise more, they sucked my blood out! The nerve of them people!

Then it was off to school for a little bit. I graded a test and wrote some emails. I was killing time because I needed to take the youngest to his scout master's house for a camping trip, and I didn't want to go all the way home.

We stopped on the way at a gas station for a snack and then began the short trip to the scout master's house.

(Here's the part where it gets scary - you may want to close your eyes.)

(Are they open yet? - Good!)

So, I'm driving along minding my own business and this guy in an SUV pulls out of a McDonald's parking lot in front of me. I managed to hit my brakes and turn a little to the right, or I would have been head-on into his driver's side doors. As it was, the left front end of my car smashed into his.

But, we were all wearing seat belts and no one was hurt (although my right shoulder is a little sore.) I don't even know if the other guy got ticketed, but I sure hope he did - it wasn't my fault. In fact, the first thing he said when he got out of his car was "I'm sorry." Hey, accidents happen - I was cool, calm, and collected. But I sure hope his insurance company is going to pay the cost of fixing the van. The left front fender is dented up and I lost the headlight and turn signal.

But I am very grateful. Again, no one was hurt and it could have been so much more worse. Both vehicles were able to be driven away, and any crash you can walk away from is a good one, right?

So - how was YOUR Friday the 13th??


It has been brought to my attention that I forgot some celebrities I had crushes on. Here is the edited list:

Celebrity Crushes:

1. T_T!
2. T_T!
3. T_T!
4. T_T!
5. Torry

Pilfered Content

Okay, I'm not really pilfering the content of someone else's blog, but I saw this "meme" on Mrs. Goodneedle's blog, and I thought I'd give it a try.

I wish to do before I die:
1. Visit Hawaii and see the ocean from the sandy beach.
2. Write a children's story and have it published.
3. See my two children settled into satisfying careers.
4. Travel across American and see its beauty.
5. Visit Europe.

I can do:
1. Crochet.
2. Communicate in American Sign Language.
3. Sing.
4. Teach.
5. Pray.

I can't do:
1. (Yet) - stay organized.
2. Speak unkindly about another person (at least not without feeling guilty.)
3. Eat peas and liver.
4. Stop singing.
5. Forget all the wonderful things God has done in my life.

that attract me to the opposite sex:

1. Smiles.
2. Honesty.
3. Commitment to God.
4. Patience.
5. Being married to him! (LOL)

Celebrity Crushes:

Can't really think of any off hand.

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Summer Time and the Living is Easy?

Well, it's been an interesting time after getting back from Kansas. My mother-in-law has moved in so we're trying to consolidate two households into one. And it doesn't help that my house was a mess before! LOL It's coming together slowly.

I am doing my first tutoring of the summer tomorrow. It's actually for no pay because I donated five tutoring sessions to our school auction. But it should be fun. She's coming to the house - a rising second grader.

Did I write about my poison ivy yesterday? When we went caching in Kansas (or in Oklahoma) I must have finally succumbed to the poison ivy curse. I talked to my sister tonight, and she and her husband have it, too. I'm going to email my cousin and see if she's suffering as well. Oh well, the price you pay when you go play in the woods.

Monday, July 9, 2007

Back from Kansas

Well, I'm back from Kansas and I'm going to try to get back to blogging! The trip to Kansas was a good one; I had a good time with my cousin who turned 50 while I was there. We did some geocaching and watched "Evan Almighty" in the theater. That was a great movie! Hope you all get a chance to watch it. We all need to be building our ARKs.

My mother-in-law is all moved in and has washed dishes twice today and made dinner. I'm about to get spoiled again, I think. She really is a nice woman, and I think she likes having her own space downstairs (living/bedroom combo.)

While in Kansas, my cousin taught me a new crochet square, so I'm working on a blanket for my husband's birthday (shhhhhhh... it's a surprise!) It is a square that looks like weaving. I will take a picture of it sometime and post it.

It is SOOOO nice not to be teaching summer school. I am going to be tutoring some this summer, but it's nice not to have the daily commitment.

Sorry there is nothing spectacular in this post, but at least I'm back in the swing of things. Have a great day!