Monday, January 31, 2005

Another Monday

I made it through the day without screwing up too much but lately my screw-ups are the highlights of my life so maybe it's not such a good thing to be totally screw-upless.

I was in a "mood" when I left work so when the time came to skedaddle outta there, I checked to see if anyone was waiting (there wasn't), checked to see if there were any returns to be checked over (only the ones I'd done, so there weren't), told the receptionist I was outta there, and left. It was a busy day and I was done-in.

I had to stop in to buy bread and milk on my way home so $50 bucks plus later I was on my way home to the sound of sloshing and curchunking of tossed groceries in the back seat of my truck and the cranked up tunes of the Eagles as I made stops at the two stoplights (I always catch the redlights) and made the 4 right turns, plus a left, that take me into my driveway (not bad for 12 miles huh?) I've never counted the potholes that add to the sounds my groceries make but some day I'm gonna.

I walked in the door with both arms loaded with groceries and asked my over-worked hubby to please go out for the other 2 bags (just bread and milk remember?). I noticed as I came in that the grass and other bits of indefinable stuff was still all over the carpet from the kid play of the day before so I decided to grab the vacuum before unpacking the bags. I managed to get a nice trail cleared whilst unburdening my body of some of the hateful work attire I'm forced to wear in public during the day. After hubby deposited the other bags in the kitchen he told me he'd finish the vacuuming. I reckon he was hungry and decided the food would come quicker if he cleaned up a little of the mess (which at least half was his anyway) but I fooled him by making my way on to my bathroom where I was able to don my regular uniform of jamma bottoms and t-shirt before making my way back to the kitchen to throw some steaks in a skillet and some taters in the microwave.

Now the food's been eaten, the Terrorist bathed, and Nanny is going to finish up a little book work before she hits the hay.

Was I on'na roll or what?

I hope everyone's Monday was fine and I promise I'm gonna get caught up with my blog strolling as soon as things slow down a little around here.

Happy Birthday!!

Happy Birthday Miz Wanda! Hope it's a wonderful day for you!

Sunday, January 30, 2005

I was invited to add to this poem

by Cindra. It was started by a fellow blogger and several have added to it.

I'm drawned tonight
-in the words of your eyes
-they dragged me down...
-with quiet sighs.

- Tomorrow’s promise
- Is yet to be defined

- What will the evening bring (my line)

I'd like to ask Dennis to add a line, if he wouldn't mind, please. I think I'm supposed to ask 3 people but I'm so confused cause so many are doing this.

Saturday, January 29, 2005

I had a minute to play

So I thought I'd play Ms. Leslie's game.

Something Old

My Grandma and Grandpa Fisher in their youth sometime around 1924.

Something New

New baby blooming.

Something Borrowed

My vines are borrowed from nature every summer.

Something Blue

Blue Delft

Friday, January 28, 2005

Dammit it anyway!

I'm locked and loaded and looking for a fight! Everything is wrong: my clothes don't fit right, my hair is horrible, my truck has a dent, I never get to do anything, there is never enough money, nobody appreciates ME, the house is a mess, noone else does a damned thing around here, I've had money in my purse to buy a new couch for 7 weeks now and I can't find one NOR do I have the time to look very hard for one, Zach is spoiled, and so is the bird, the kitchen needs a good scrubbing, so does the rest of the house, there isn't enough time, and I don't care most days anyway, it's too hot, it's too cold, I'm tired of the same old food, my back hurts, my legs ache, I'm getting old and it pisses me off, I need a break but I have more breaks than anyone I know, AND IT'S ALL SOMEONE ELSE'S FAULT!

And I think I've got something stamped on my forehead that says "tell all your problems to this stranger since she's stuck behind that desk at your mercy!"

Ok, I'm done now.

Just Because

I keep getting the urge to purchase one of these but so far I've managed to restrain myself. Does this mean I'm turning into a redneck????

Wednesday, January 26, 2005

I've gone and done it.

I've crossed that fine line between genius and total insanity. I went into the untilty room a few minutes ago and opened the washer to put in a load of clothes. There were wet clothes IN the washer. So, I'm standing there thinking, "why's the dryer running if the clothes are still in the washer?" When I opened the dryer I found out that it was because I had started the dryer without putting the wet clothes in.

I wonder if this condition could be dangerous?

I've had my two days of starting work at 9 so tomorrow begins my 8:00 start days and I won't have a day off until Sunday. We've been pretty busy and today it's caught up with me. I'm beat.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005


I hold the greatest admiration for anyone who's organized. I reckon it's because I've never been blessed with even a smidgen of organizational skills. I can get into a routine whereas I can get things done that must be done, but I'm the one sitting there amongst stacks of files and piles of papers as I do them. I reckon I'm a visual person cause if something's out of sight, it's way outta my mind.

I used to play this game with a friend of mine who had Martha Stewart type organizational skills. We'd be sitting there having a cup of coffee and I'd ask her, do you have sissors? She'd get up, go to another room, and call back asking me which scissors I needed and come back with 3 or 4 pairs in her hands. I'd ask if I could see the photos she'd taken of their trip 10 years past or something, she'd be back in a flash with an album with the right photos in it. No matter what, she knew exactly where it was and could put her hands on it in a matter of minutes. Mind you, I could do the same thing but only after a couple of hours of searching and tossing aside boxes or stacks of every kind of unrelated items.

I can't even manage to get dressed in the mornings without backtracking a dozen times because something I need will be in a totally different part of the house. This morning I was able to do all my dressing in my bedroom and bathroom except that I had to go to the utility room to find the most comfortable underwear which meant I had to traipse through the house with everything up top covered while my bare bottom was exposed to the elements. If my underwear happens to be in the drawer, where it should be, then some other item of clothing would be somewhere else. It's just a vicious cycle!

Please tell me there are others out there like me, just to make me feel a little better about not knowing where I took my shoes off last night.

(please note that this does not represent me)

Sunday, January 23, 2005

Without A Paddle.

Next time you're having a lazy Sunday afternoon and want to laugh just for the hell of it, you need to rent "Without A Paddle".

"The call of the wild, the thrill of adventure. The mistake of a lifetime."

"Three lifelong friends... One lost treasure... What could go wrong?"

One of my favorite parts,,when they were confronted by a big ole grizzley,

Don Mott: What are you doing?
Jerry Conlaine: Taking off my shoes
Dan Mott: Why?
Jerry Conlaine:
Because I run faster with no shoes
Dan Mott: You can't out-run that bear!
Jerry Conlaine: I dont have to out-run the bear, I just have to out-run you!

Happy Birthday Trisha!

My oldest daughter, Trisha, is 33 today! I'm remembering a warm, balmy, January day when she decided to announce her intentions of coming into the world. After a long day of drugged labor she arrived at 10:05 pm.

Trish was absolutely the easiest to raise of our 3 children until she decided at age 18 that we knew nothing. I think she believes we're a little smarter now (grin).

Happy Birthday my sweet, intelligent, first born.

Saturday, January 22, 2005

Lazy Saturday

I managed to do very little this entire day. The Chick came to visit in the afternoon and we were completely entertained.

Zach and the Chick playing with her toy kitchen.

YaYa aggitating Jerri.

Friday, January 21, 2005

In THAT kinda mood.

It's been another long and busy day and I know this because I lost 3 cups of coffee today, those same 3 cups of coffee that I managed to get into the cup without being rudely interrupted by a client. I usually only lose a couple of cups during the day so I reckon I broke my own record!

I finish up a client, drop the file in line to be checked, and if there are none done by others to be checked, I trip back to the kitchen to heat a cup of water to make a cup of my General Mills delight. (not really but it'll do in a crunch). If things work out right, I have time to heat the water for one and a half minutes and throw in the powder stuff and stir. Then someone up front will ask me something and I sit the coffee down. Then I get distracted by something else, and by the time I remember my coffee, I can't remember where the hell I put it. Kameron, the sweet little receptionist, will sometimes remind me that I'd made a cup of coffee and find it for me but today she was also swamped so I've only managed to sip those 3 cups of coffee after I'd hunted them down and after they'd come to be the same temperature as tepid dishwater (similiar in taste too).

What I really needed today, after that last client, (the one that was scratching various body parts as I hurriedly tried to get all her stuff together), was a couple of glasses of wine. THAT's the kinda mood I'm in.

Or a fresh lemon slush from Sonic, spiked with my old friend, Jose gold.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Sometimes I'm just a Bitch.

Although James thinks I am all the time,
it's really only sometimes. I try to hold "her" back but sometimes "she" just escapes and says her piece.

This afternoon the phone rang while I was trying to do two things at once during supper preparation and an Earthlink telemarketer told me, in broken English, how Earthlink could increase the speed of my dial-up dramatically. I asked him if it were really possible for my connection to be speeded up on 40-yr-old phone lines. He told me he couldn't understand my English. I repeated my question and he still couldn't understand me. I finally told him to call me back when he'd found someone around there who could understand MY English and hung up on him.

I've just been in a rotten mood today but that's no excuse for letting "her" out to attack a poor unsuspecting telemarketer, even if he should have English lessons before trying to sell products to an American (even if she does have a slight southern accent). I normally only loosens the reins on "her" when hubby gives me cause but this poor fella was kinda just asking for it.

I finally went to the doctor today (I was able to take off work a little early) as advised by the doctor I saw while I was in Holland. My heart has been doing these crazy flip-flops and most days it only happens occasionally, the past week or so, it's been more often, like almost constantly. I've also had some major swelling of a few body parts. He (my doctor) is agreeing (with the Dutch doc), for the time being, that the skipped beats are from fluid accumulation in my body and in and around my lungs. He also believes it to be partly due to the beginnings of menopause. The EKG didn't show anything abnormal except that my heart is skipping beats (which I knew cause I told him that!)

So,,for the next two weeks, unless anything becomes different, I'll be peeing over the moon on a regular basis, cutting back on my salt intake, and taking some horse pills so my potassium levels will stay normal.

I hope everyone's Thursday was as good as it could be!

There was frost in the air this morning but it ended up being over 50F.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

Been a long day

And I'm pooped.

I need a foot rub, any offers?

I hope everyone had a good un!

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

I just heard a song that blew me away,,,,

And boy did it bring back some old feelings. Blaine Larsen is one of the newest country music artists to sign a deal in Nashville and although I'm not into the newest style of country music, I really did like this song.

How Did You Get That Lonely


How do you get that lonely, how do you hurt that bad
To make you make the call, that havin' no life at all
Is better than the life that you had
How do you feel so empty, you want to let it all go
How do you get that lonely... and nobody know.

I lost a dear, dear, friend to suicide and also my crazy, sweet, kind, brother-in-law. I can remember asking some of those same questions myself. I feel I've also been near the point to where I could have answered some of those questions but by the Grace of God and a thread of sanity, learned that those times will pass if you'll just hang on.

If ya'll get a chance you should give Blaine Larsen a listen. His music will grab ya.

OK, Whoever was trying to get my attention this morning,,,,


I just hope it's with good intentions though.

I just came in here to check my email before leaving for work and I heard a noise that sounded like someone trying to start a small engine. I thought perhaps hubby was right outside trying to start his ATV, or something.

I went to look and he had already left to start his day of bird hunting so I was perplexed but went back to my email. Then I heard the noise again and started looking, again, for the source. I finally tracked it to Zach's remote control Hummer. It was moving a few inches every few minutes on it's own.

Thinking the remote was stuck, I switched it off. A couple minutes later it moved again. I then snatched it up and found a switch on the bottom to turn it off too.

If someone's sending me a message here, ya'll call me on my cell so we can talk about it cause if GI Joe and Spiderman come trotting in, I'm outta here!!

Sunday, January 16, 2005

Uhhhhhhh and I gotta work tomorrow......

You'd think since I only work a few months a year that I'd be all bright and perky about the prospect of getting up at dawn, getting dressed up in underwear and clothing that doesn't have Tweety or pink rose buds on it, and going out into temperatures that aren't near 'bout like the ones I was boasting about last week. (you remember? those ones where you could lounge around outdoors without sleeves, even if it was raining?)

Well just call me Grumpy cause bright and perky I ain't!

I've finished up the 3 tax returns that I had to do here at home this weekend and I've made 2 cakes, and was almost alert enough to play with the kiddies while they were here yesterday and today although I did a lot of groaning most every time I moved cause for some reason the muscles in my back are kinda acting up. I think that's where the Grumpy part came in.

Zach loved his birthday cake and pizza lunch (as much as he took time to eat) and I think he loves the 2 new games he got for his birthday because he's been in his room playing them all day.

Anyway, I have the early shift tomorrow so I'm gonna go mildew for a little while before bedtime.

Some of the kiddies

The Chick and PopPop looking over some of his old marble and arrowhead collection.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Catching up on my sleep.

I didn't have to work today because I spent those 4 hours in a meeting last Saturday. I think I'll have to work some Saturdays but not this one at least. So, I'm taking advantage of the few minutes of quiet before Zach wakes up to sip my coffee and post a bit.

I'm still learning the routine of a new office and a new program but things were easier yesterday than they were the day before so I reckon even an old dog eventually gets it together. (I just hope that old dog can keep it together once it is). The folks I'm working with are great too so that helps bunches!

I was really tired last night but I'm pretty sure it wasn't from being overworked. I think all the excitment just caught up with me and I had to pause for a minute to crash.

This morning I need to go into town to buy a few groceries and get the stuff to make Zach a birthday cake. His birthday is Monday and he'll be a big 8 years old! He's been looking in the mirror to see if there's any sign of whiskers yet because he's pretty sure he's becoming a man already. Tomorrow afternoon his sisters, Alexis, and Jessie, will probably come over to have cake and ice cream with him. I ordered him a Cabela's Big Game Hunter game for his Game Cube but it hasn't come in yet so I've got to get him something to appease him until it arrives.

I hope everyone has a great weekend!

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Today was better.

Nothing spectacular or anything but normal except for having to leave home early enough to go by JW Paint and Body Shop for an estimate. $3785.00 worth of eyeballing later, I arrived at work and started my work day. And I was actually early since I made the late grand entrance yesterday.

I did have to do a little float trip this morning on our road. This, my dear friends and family, is the reason I prefer driving a truck!

I do prefer to drive a truck without dents in it though.

I did wake up with aches and pains this morning but no worse than the stiffness I normally wake up to so I guess the only thing that was actually hurt in the accident was my truck and my feelings.

This morning as I was telling the ladies at work about the accident, one of them remarked that you'd think the traffic would slow down when they noticed the blue lights flashing beside the highway. I told her that it wasn't necessarily true in this neck of the woods (the redneck, neck, of the woods). They probably saw the blue lights and just thought someone was late to take down their Christmas decorations!

She thought I was joking.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

Can't I just do this day over??????

If I could do it over, I'd start it out right,,I promise.

I strolled into work at 9:25am this morning thinking I was 25 minutes early with thoughts of having another leisurely cup of coffee before starting my day. That was before I glanced at the schedule to refresh my mind as to what my work hours for the end of the week would be and discovered that I was supposed to have been at work at 9:00 this morning. Tomorrow (Thurs) and Friday are my 10 to 6 days, not Wednesday and Thursday as I'd thought.

Boy did I feel dumb.

So, I made it through the day without screwing up anything else and then it was time to go home.

I was driving along and was about 3 or 4 miles outside the city limits when a car came out of a service station parking lot, crossed between two cars that were stopped in the left lane to make left turns, and bashed into the side of my truck. When the cab of my truck was all lit up with his headlights and I realized this ASSHOLE was gonna hit me I swerved to the right, partially to the shoulder of the highway, and avoided what could have been a 4 car accident. Since I was already on the shoulder I pulled over further and got out of the 4 lanes of traffic so I wouldn't get my ass knocked off again.

Ever try to push those little, tiny buttons on a cell phone when you're shaking like a pine tree in a hurricane? It ain't easy. And then you have to talk to whoever answers and you have to stop crying so they can understand what you're trying to tell them. When they can finally understand you, they transfer your call. Twice. YOUR 911 CALL!

By then the other driver had come up to my window to see if I was ok so I was able to relay to the THIRD dispatcher that I'd explained my predicament to that noone was hurt, (although I know my legs wouldn't have held me up if I'd tried to get out of that truck right then) but they needed to send a State Trooper out there pronto to the accident.

20 minutes later I called again.

Finally, after a 45 minute wait, on the shoulder of a 4 lane highway full of low-flying semis and cars zooming by, I get not one, but two Troopers, Opie the Third, and Trooper Winston.

Opie doesn't want to tell me anything about the dude in the car that hit me (he mentioned something about not being able to tell me if he gave him a citation or not although what I asked him was his NAME and address), all I know about him at this point is that he looked to be about 19 or 20, has long hair, and had left the scene to walk home a half a block or so, to the trailer park, to get his mother before the Troopers arrived.

Trooper Winston, however, had no such qualms about delivering a few tidbits ( I think he's still a little wary of me since he ripped off the back end of my new car with his Trooper car in 1997 while making a U-turn on that same highway). The tidbits did not make me a happy person.

The guy was driving an antique, it had to be cause Winston told me that it hadn't been licensed since 1974. He also had no drivers license, and no insurance.

At least I avoided a really bad collision by swerving over as much as I could and I can drive my truck even though it has a dent in it (dammit!!)

Did I mention that I'd made my last payment on my truck last month?

As I was leaving I asked the deputy sheriff, who'd also decided to stop by, if the dent was bad (I couldn't get out of my truck because I didn't want to risk one of those big rigs making me all mushy and stuff and also I was still shaking really bad). The good ole boy deputy told me, "Well, after you warsh that mud offin it, it'll probably show a purdy good dent". My reply was, "Kiss my ass, I live on a gravel road and I'm lucky to be getting out at all without 4-wheel-drive, have a NICE day!"

I have not had a good day ya'll.

And tomorrow I've got to start my day by getting repair estimates before going to work.

Brent, can't you move down here and straighten these boys out???

This could be the second time around for this.

But if it is, it deserves a rerun. I can SO relate to it.

Dear Tide:

I'm writing to say what an excellent product you have!
I've used it since the beginning of my married life, when my Mom told me
it was the best. Now that I am older and going through menopause, I find it
even better! In fact, about a month ago, I spilled some red wine on
my new white blouse. My unfeeling and uncaring husband started to berate me
about how clumsy I was and generally started becoming a pain in the neck. One thing led to another and I ended up with a lot of his blood on my white blouse. I tried
to get the stain out using a bargain detergent, but it just wouldn't come out.
After a quick trip to the supermarket, I purchased a bottle of liquid Tide
with bleach alternative, and to my surprise and satisfaction, all of the
stains came out! In fact, the stains came out so well, that when the
detectives who came by yesterday told me that the DNA tests on my blouse
were negative and then my attorney called and said that I
would no longer be considered a suspect in the disappearance of my husband. What a relief.
I thank you, once again, for having such a greatproduct, Well, I gotta go, I
have to write a letter to the Hefty Bag people.


A relieved menopausal wife

Tuesday, January 11, 2005

Happy Birthday Miz Mary lou!!!

I hope you have one of the happiest days EVER!

I think I'm gonna make you a cake.
And eat it.

Sunday, January 09, 2005

Happy Birthday Son!

On this day 25 years ago at 2:52pm you came into this world. You've made me cry a few times but the laughter that you have given me is what I remember best!

Jami, Bubbie (3 mons) and Trish, 1980.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Oddly enough

This has been a somewhat different week for me. First I had an email from my cousin down in Ft. Lauderdale asking me if I'd be interested in flying to Hawaii for a little R&R in late February, then the next day I had an invitation to a party way out west the first week in February, and THEN, I had a call from a cousin who I've not seen or heard from in over 2 years who just wanted to ask me if I was all right because she'd had a dream where, apparently, I died.

My replies to the 2 invitations were "HELL yeah, I'd love to, but since this is the only time of the year when I actually DO a little work, and I've told them I would work, I can't attend.

But you know, even though it's not possible for me to take advantage of these kind invitations, it feels really good to know that they thought enough of me to ask. Except for the one with the inquiry about my possible demise,,,I'm still pondering on how to take that. I sure hope her dream wasn't one of those foretelling kinds cause I'm just too busy to be checking out right now and I'm hoping my reservations with this life has a little more time on it.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Music and Memories

I Love honest open smiles
Kisses from a child
Tomatoes on the vine, and onions
I Love winner's when they cry
Loser's when they try
Music when it's good, and life
And I love you too.

,,,,Tom T. Hall, "I Love".

I have muddled and mixed memories of my childhood but I can remember always having a love for music. I listen mostly to oldies stations and classic rock in my truck when I'm driving and occasionally a song will come on and bring a memory.

I can remember sitting in a the little Dairy Bar in the tiny town of 300 where I spent several of my "growing up" years and putting a few dimes in the jukebox so I could hear "96 Tears" over and over again. I think I was around 10 or 11 then.

In the summer of 1968, as I was making plans to go to England to live with my father for 3 years, I remember hearing a song by Mary Hopkins that I loved the first time I heard it, "Those Were The Days". That hot summer day, listening to the radio as I tried to pack my suitcase for the 25th time, is a memory that goes with that song.

During my stay with my father and stepmom the Viet Nam War was raging and every time I think of Viet Nam now I think of Creedance Clearwater Revival and

Looking Out My Back Door
There's A Bad Moon Arising
Stuck in Lodi
Proud Mary
Who'll Stop The Rain
Green River

"The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly" brings memories of going to Huntingdon in Cambridgeshire with my friend, Susan, to watch bubblegum westerns starring Clint Eastwood (who I had such a crush on). I also think of Susan every time I hear the Bee Gees because she had every one of their records (she had such a big crush on Barry).

Kenny Roger's song, "Lucille", brings to mind Joel who was another American who lived in our little village in England that I became friends with. He asked me out every single day for a year and every single day I told him no because he was a year younger than I was.

"Joy To The World" by Three Dog Night has it's place in my memories too since it played on the radio in James's '68 Chevy as I was introduced to the dating practices of pure country rednecks. I bet we over to Helena to drag Cherry Street a thousand times in the months before we married.

I love songs that bring memories.

Thursday, January 06, 2005

Wanda, Special K, and Mary lou, made me curious so,,,

I just had to go searching to see what I could find out about the monster who claims to have started the "misery of the bra".

A lawsuit was fought in the courts from 1934 to 1938 in New York, between a German-born
designer, Otto Titzling (1884-1942), and a French-born designer,
Philippe de Brassiere over who had legal claim to the invention of the modern day bra. But, there were prototypes of the bra many years before either Titzling or Brassiere's claims.

Bra history truly began with the first bra to be patented. The first bra was patented in 1914 by Mary Phelps-Jacobs an American. It is not thought to be the first bra ever, but it is the first patented record and that gives her the credit.

Mary Phelps-Jacobs patented her bra design under the patent name of Caresse Crosby. Some suggest it was her French maid who provided the idea or the stitching help. Two silk handkerchiefs were tied together, baby ribbon sewn on to make straps and a seam set in the centre front.

I can't imagine this would hold up this set of mine without some major reinforcement with duct tape!

But then you also have American Marie Tucek who patented a bra-type undergarmet, which she called a "breast supporter," in 1893. It had two supportive cups and shoulder straps.

There were also a number of statues dating from 2500 BC have been found on the Greek island of Crete that show women wearing bra-like corsets that lifted their breasts out of their clothing. It was called a mastoeides (“shaped like a breast”).

Bust improvers or padded bras were popular in 1840. These bras have been called falsies, cuties, bosom friends, waxen bosoms, lemon loves, and pneumatic breasts.

In the 1920s, women wore bra-type underwear that pressed down their chests for the then-popular flat-chest look.

Also in the 1920's, a Russian immigrant named Ida Rosenthal founded the Maidenform lingerie company with her husband William. They made bras for women of every size and introduced the cup system (A, B, C, D). It wasn't until 1935 that bras were made with both cup and band sizes. The British called the cup measures junior, medium, full, and full with wide waist.

Strapless bras were introduced in 1938. They were popularized in the 1950s. Also the sweater girl bra was made in the 1950s. Its cups were shaped to points and looked a lot like cones.

The push-up bra was introduced in the 1990s. It makes women's breasts look larger that they are. In recent years bras have been sold that include little pillows of gel or water to make the chest look larger. Others can be pumped up with a little air pump.

Today, the average American woman owns six bras. White is the best-selling color for bras.

"Infoplease Article."
Figure Control.* Fact Monster.
© 2000–2004 Pearson Education, publishing as Fact Monster.
06 Jan. 2005

The Story of Soony

In 1988 some friends of ours hosted Thilo, an exchange student from Germany. He and our daughter, Trisha, became good friends and he spent a lot of time at our house during his time in the U.S. After Thilo went back to Germany, his coordinator contacted us to ask if we'd consider hosting a student for the next school year. We thought it over for a few weeks, talked it over with our kids, then told her we'd give it a try. Nancy brought over a stack of applications soon after and something about this Dutch girls application made me feel that she'd be the right one.

We met Danielle Eliza Hubertina Soons (Soony) in August, 1989 at the airport and as she walked off that plane, she walked into our lives and has stayed. She lived through the experience of living with a strange family in a foreign land as she's lived her life so far,,by viewing it as a new adventure.

Aug., 1989. Her first taste of southern fried catfish, but not her last!

Visiting the cotton fields with Elena,(who lived with friends of ours and became friends with Soony) and Vincente, another Arkansas exchange student.

With Trish, Jami, and Bubbie during her stay from Aug. 1989 to May 1990.

With Jami and Bubbie when she visited us in 1992.

1995 visit to Monschou, Germany when James and I visited her in the Netherlands

In 1997 she came to meet Zachary.

She came to visit again in March, 2000 as a surprise for me. I had no idea she was coming until she walked in the door one evening. I promised her during that visit that the next time I visited her, it would be to attend her wedding.

And I did.

I never imagined I could come to love a child, who I had not given birth to, as my own. All you have to do is open your heart and welcome her into your family.