i would rather sail than do anything.

Saturday, May 27, 2006

a hearty welcome to LIU QIAN GUO

liu means "willow" and qian means "pretty". she was born on July 30th, 2005 and was abandoned on the same day in front of a shoe store. she likes her toys and will scream if you take any of them away from her. and if she wants what you're playing with, she'll take that too. she's about 10 months old and deb will return from china with her just in time for her first birthday. woohoo! she's from the chinese province GUANGXI and from the small seaside village of BEIHAI. yeah! SEASIDE VILLAGE! on the south china sea. how perfect. she'll love living by lake michigan! (i know...not quite the same.) anyhow, welcome cute little person. i can't wait to go shoe shopping with you!

Wednesday, May 24, 2006


church got broken into again. there is a little bench that sits outside of door "D" that someone decided to throw into the bookstore window to try to get to the cash registers. i suppose the poor idiots didn't realize that the money from the registers is kept elsewhere...like the BANK! hardly any money even as change is kept around. the change that we DO keep around is kept inside a SAFE in a HIDDEN CLOSET nowhere NEAR the bookstore itself.

there WAS one funny thing about it though. (if you are a seinfeld fan, i don't mean "ha ha" funny but "peculiar" funny.) becky fox and i had gone to dinner sunday nite in michigan city after the da vinci simulcast at church. we came back to the church parking lot after 10:30 and surprised a yellow mustang that probably hadn't planned on running into anyone that time of night. the other "funny" thing was that just after i dropped fox off to get into her car, the parking lot lights timed out. i believe that yellow mustang knew that the lights were about to go off. fox and i both left the parking lot right behind the yellow mustang. i watched the yellow mustang pull into the driveway of the house just south of church. i suddenly realized they were probably just waiting for us to leave. i whipped around in the corner store parking lot and flew back to the church parking lot but went in the north entrance--out of sight of the mustang. i sat with my headlights off in the WAY back of the parking lot hidden behind the vans to see if the mustang came back in. i sat for about ten minutes in the dark waiting to sneak attack the maniacal yellow mustang villains.

they never came back into the parking lot but after about ten minutes when i finally left and went south on calumet ave, i noticed they were still sitting in the driveway of the same house--headlights on, car running. i suppose i may have scared them off for that night--as they may have been thinking a sunday night would be a good time to steal from the church bookstore since there was a lot of business done sunday morning. however, had i known there would be a burglary (or attempted burglary and definite vandalism) on another night this same week, i would have sneaked through the woods to get the license number--from the driveway they sat in. people always ask me, "what would you do if/when you do catch stupid and possibly dangerous people?" i actually have no idea. guess it depends how many there are. i could definitely take on ONE. but i would have called the cops before i actually moved in. that way i would have known i'd have backup. eventually.

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

the irony of it all

i have to drive into the yuckiest parts of chicago every day, let me just tell you! the irony of it all is that i drive by a sweet bunch of BEAUTIFUL sailboats. and this is the time of year they're all being floated. out of storage, into the water. i finally stopped by the yacht yard today for the first time. man, everything and ANYTHING you could ever need to sail. (and the prices to go with it!) sigh. i would much rather spend my days there than a mile from there. (at my school.) but even better, would to be in the middle of the lake away from stupid people. on a sweet boat. chillin. again, SIGH. here's a pic of one i saw them getting ready today. semis come in all the time with new boats and huge masts. wish one of them were mine.

Monday, May 22, 2006

my friend karl

please PRAY for my friend karl. he is not well and needs your prayers. he is having surgery tomorrow and will have surgery again soon, probably. he lives in northeast Georgia and yesterday (maybe two days ago) he also had LIGHTNING hit his apartment. made his microwave go "pop" and "sizzle." his t.v. went pop and sizzle too. so did the fridge and a few other things but some were salvageable. i guess it could have been worse! there was no fire! lightning doesn't strike the same place twice! besides that, you can send all the bad, bad storms up here for us tornado freaks! okay, karl?


garage sale fundraiser

well, saturday was a crazy day. the first garage sale fundraiser is over. the 3 items below this entry are still for sale to a good home. any reasonable offer will be considered. there is also a six-year-old gas forced-air furnace. my two friends scott and heidi are adopting from guatemala and my friend deb is adopting from asia. we are trying to raise support for the babies to be brought home. currently scott and heidi's son and deb's daughter are in orphanages. the sooner they can get to the U.S. the better. please consider donating whether you purchase an item or not. it's for an EXCELLENT cause! the next garage sale is friday & saturday, june 16th and 17th. leave a comment if you want more info. pictured here is heidi and sadie the dog. scott is pictured 5 entries below holding carter, their other son.

air tank for sale-made by grainger

this thing is worth about $100 scrap steel. all it needs is a compressor. it's supposed to be capable of 100 psi but someone told me it's capable of much more. (180) anyway, i'd be willing to accept a price starting at $80. please leave a comment if interested.

lawn tractor TILLER attachment for sale!

at least i think it's a tiller. or something. please correct me if it's something else. (good thing there's a picture!) anyway, leave a comment if interested. will consider any reasonable offer. it's near-new.

NASHUA woodstove for sale!

this nashua is an air tight woodstove made back in the day. it would be perfect for heating a garage or something. the manufacturer used to test their products by putting a stick of dynamite inside and closing the door. kaBOOM! if their product survived, it was ok to sell. this thing is worth $300 scrap steel. if interested, leave a comment. it comes complete with piping, bricks, and blower.

Thursday, May 18, 2006

how to make french fries

the only reason i'm awake right now although i went to bed at about 7pm tonight, is because my cell phone rang and rang and rang. somehow in a sleepy stupor i dropped it in the kleenex box by my bed and then had great difficulty getting it out. by the time i was awake enuf to realize my cell phone was ringing and it wasn't my remote, it was too late.

so here i am.

i had wanted to get together with a friend last night on the north side but i'm realizing it's good that i didn't. when i was out on my family's farm during spring break, my true cousins were not really around. brad is working on his Ph.D. at oxford--yes, the real one in england--and danica is a teacher too and was only able to come out for the weekend. besides hanging out with my aunt and uncle, i spent time with drew, brad and danica's cousin. (my faux.) but from now on he's just my cousin too. easier. anyway, he lives on the farm as well. he's got a potato gun and i had never been taught before how to make FRIES with the thing. turns out all you have to do is shoot the potato at a corn crib! and voila. french fries.

i was up quite late last night grading papers and entering grades. progress reports were due. ugh. so now that i've farted around online, i'm goin back to bed. so little sleep last nite...grr

hope u made it home safe, drew. give my spike hugs and kisses! xoxo


Sunday, May 14, 2006

last but not least....


scott & carter

worked all day saturday gathering large garage sale items for a garage sale fundraiser. my friends scott and heidi and another friend deb are all adopting internationally this summer. we were up till 11pm moving a HUGE air tank, a MONSTROUS cast iron woodstove, a furnace, steel shelving, a sweet leather la-z-boy, large and small furniture, electronics, etc. (oh yeah...and mostly in the rain.) we ended up calling a bunch of people kinda last minute because of the eight kajillion pound woodstove. the thing is seriously huge. funny thing about us being up till 11 on a saturday night and me STARTING to call folks around 9:30...two of the people i called to help are pastors at my church. oops. but they agreed to come and help. they rock. but i guess scott kind of had to because he's the one who is adopting from guatemala. anyway, here's a picture of scott and carter. carter's the man. he's about two months old and i'm babysitting him in a couple weeks!

if you think of it, pray for elijah and brynn. they'll be having a huge transition in their lives coming up soon. they are currently in orphanages in their respective countries.


how often have you driven through the drive-thru backwards? if you haven't, you should. and if you have, you should do it more often. you only live once. and mark, you're awesome!

also...should anyone need any interior decorating or office space "rehab" they can let me know. i know some people who are quite talented!!!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

23 school days left

do you see a pattern here? anyway, kids are awesome. i love my kids. this pic is of kids from my last school--i miss my old students. i like my new students too, though. well-most of them.

i found out recently that i am now expected to go to a two-day seminar next weekend. (may 20-21) that's a saturday-sunday! i have to be at a seminar ALL WEEKEND?!?!?! wow. unbelievable. it's learning about LRE--least restrictive environment. i will have no weekend. i am somewhat sick at the thought. sigh. my only comfort in this is that it is in oakbrook, and if you know my shopping habits, this bodes well with me. i have it all planned out. after my workshops on saturday, i'll start shopping at nordstrom (shoe section) and will make my way around to stir crazy for dinner. in case you don't know, that's where you pile as many veggies as possible in a bowl and some guy who likes fire will stir fry that stuff with any meat and sauce of your choice. i always get it with chicken. mmm. yummy.

speaking of yummy...apparently when i came home from school today amidst mid-munch of a mini twix, i fell asleep. yeah, i was surprised too. but i've got chocolate all over my pillow, my sheets, and me. i must be in need of summer break worse than i thought.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006


so tonite i helped my friend organize her garage a little. she just bought a house quite close to lake michigan last fall and it's really awesome. she's the one who's adopting a baby from china and she and some other friends are having a garage sale as a fundraiser in a few weeks. in order to have a GARAGE sale, one must have GARAGE space. (our other friends are adopting from guatemala.) so anyway, we're getting ready for the garage sale.

about the title...there are a lot of tools in this world that i don't know the names of. some i know but can't remember. (forgive me, my brain fails me at 31.) anyhoo, the biters are those green clampy things to the left of deb. i come up with names better than what they've originally been given. anyone agree?

Monday, May 08, 2006

how much ketchup?

i grabbed something to eat at mcdonald's on my way home from school today. one of the girls from the youth group was working. i asked for some ketchup and she gave me some, smiling. i grinned back at her. i knew she was up to something. thirty-nine packets is what she was up to. as i pulled away we were both laughing.

i laughed partly because i know in croatia, you have to pay an extra 20 lipa for each packet of ketchup you want. i always get annoyed over there because i don't feel you should have to pay extra for what you're entitled to! i'm a lover of ketchup and end up spending my bus fare back to my pansion on the stuff. i usually have to go back to an atm before i head to the bus stop. but now, i feel justified. the good ol' united states. free ketchup at mcdonald's rocks.

Sunday, May 07, 2006

time to sail yet? huh?

flowers for mom

i guess i should be getting ready for church right now but seriously...what do you really need to do to get ready? i mean, maybe i should jump in the shower again and de-funk my hair. (i took a shower last nite before i went to bed and going to bed with wet hair means when you wake up, it's wack-a-doodle.) point is, i'll just pull it back to a ponytail and hope no one can really tell.

i'm not usually a night-showerer but after yesterday, i had to. you see, i ended up doing a bunch of yard work at my parents' house and when i came home, i had grass clippings everywhere, grease on parts of me, etc. not only that, but i was cutting the grass up until the last little bit of sunlight was gone. i guess it was a good thing that the grass was so long. it's easier to cut grass after dark if you can see a distinct difference between what was already mowed and what needs to be mowed.

anyway part of what i was doing was dropping off a couple of baskets of some nice hanging flowers for my mom--early mother's day gift. and then i also ended up putting out the deck furniture and scrubbing it all down. got out the grill, cleaned out the shed, cut the grass, etc. so that's why i took a shower right before bed last night, woke up this morning having an obvious don king hair day, and should therefore be putting more effort into getting ready for church. ah well, God loves don king too.

Wednesday, May 03, 2006


I would like to recommend Madeleine Albright's book "The Mighty and the Almighty." If for no other reason, it will spark good conversation and debate. Here is an excerpt:

"The president says that liberty is a gift to everybody, but is he also implying that God appointed America to deliver that gift? Even to raise that question is to invite others. Does the United States believe it has a special relationship with God? Does it have a divinely inspired mission to promote liberty? What role, if any, should religious convictions play in the decisions of those responsible for U.S. foreign policy? But perhaps we should begin by asking why we are even thinking about these questions, given America's constitutional separation between church and state. And haven't we long since concluded that it is a mistake, in any case, to mix religion and foreign policy? I had certainly thought so."

As for Christ's opinions on this, I must wait to find out. I'm sure we're all a bit curious. But I believe Albright brings up some good points. Happy reading!

Tuesday, May 02, 2006

social security and kittens

social security is now set to be completely absolved in 2040 rather than 2041. i was going to get ONE YEAR of soc. sec. and now it's slated to end one year sooner. you see, i will turn 65 in 2040 and that is the EXACT year i should begin to receive something i've been paying into ever since i've been working. and that is the exact year that nothing will be left. HOW MUCH DOES THAT SUCK? our country's administration has issues. seriously. and dear dubya's approval ratings are less than one-third. i love it that we are completely screwing our own future as a country--one thing after another.

on a lighter note, as i was leaving school today i saw one of my little students with his cat and her kittens. so i took a picture. i forgot devontae's cat's name but the three kittens look identical. maybe they should be called fuzzy 1, fuzzy 2, and fuzzy 3. how original.

Monday, May 01, 2006

the dan ryan...

not to mention the express lanes are no longer and there are only three lanes open now instead of six in each direction...but they took out the right-hand lane this morning doing none other than CHANGING LIGHT BULBS in street lights. bringing down to TWO lanes what used to be SIX. can you even believe that? but that's chicago. crappy rainy full-of-traffic chicago. i had to go downtown again today for more training at medill. i went to learn how to make a "technology plan." without a tech plan, a school cannot apply for any grants--federal or state. so now i bet i'll be going to grant-writing seminars now too. oh joy.

see all this junk? this construction junk? i should be DRIVING right there! going 70 mph. not 10. over here. in the locals.