Saturday, May 30, 2009

Addicted to love.

That's the name of a song, right?  Just checked.  I'm good.  It's late on Friday night and I have an audition in the morning, but I can't go to sleep without posting.  (Anyone think it's funny that I described 10:40pm on a Friday night as "late"?)

I'm currently addicted to a few things.

-Trader Joe's everything.  I'm pretty sure it's the only grocery store that makes me smile just before I walk in the sliding doors.
-Kelly Clarkson's newest album "All I Ever Wanted."  I love me some Kelly and this new one is so much fun.
-Song #10 -Long Shot - on "All I Ever Wanted."
-Showing Harry Potter movies to friends for the first time.  I've been walking Erin through the movies over the past four months to get her ready for July 15th.
-The Ellen show.  I work out at 3:00pm precisely on Mondays and Fridays.  Somehow those are the only two days that I can manage to stay on the treadmill for a full hour.  I must look like a crazy person as I laugh aloud frequently while running.
-Google Reader.  Also, shared items on google reader.
-Vacuuming.  I love it.  I especially love the new vacuum my mom bought me when she was here in February.
-Real Simple and Relevant magazines.
-The Arcade Fire album Funeral.  The song Wake Up is on the trailer for "Where the Wild Things Are."  I'm also addicted to that trailer.
-I would mention grilled cheese sandwiches, but I think I've made that addiction fairly well known.
-Making ridiculous projects on The Golden Child.  Garage Band and iMovie are taking over my evenings.
-My Key Word Study Bible that I received for Christmas.  It has both Greek and Hebrew translations.
-Hitting the snooze button.  I am cursed in this area.
-Route 44 Diet Cokes from Sonic.
-Wanting to end blog posts with that's all folks, that's a rap, that's all she wrote, or The End.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What Goes Around...

This time I'M the one asking the questions!

Valerie: Okay, question one! Have you ever starred as Anne Shirley in a high school production of "Anne of Green Gables?"
Ginger: Heck yes. But the true story is that, through auditions, I was cast as Diana Berry. And then six weeks before the show, Anne did something that was...not good. So that's when I got the role.

Interesting... Now, have you ever tried to kick a tree over and ended up stabbing yourself in the leg with a piece of projectile wood?
That is a true statement, yes. And for a while later the doctors thought I still had wood in my leg!

What goes around comes around. Who do YOU have a crush on right now?
Obama. (pause) No, we'll say.... Well we can just go with my standard answer... that would be Kenneth Branagh.

What movie is Kenneth the hottest in?
HAMLET! Uh... Mourning clothes? HOT.

Interesting. So, tell me about your feelings regarding inside cats and dogs.
Umm... Well for me personally, there's a reason that when God made animals, he didn't build buildings and put them inside of them. And I know a lot of people reading this have indoor cats and dogs, and that's fine. I just don't want them living inside my house. The animals, that is.

Agreed on all counts. What's the best movie you've seen in theaters this year so far?
(Very long pause) Can we go back to '08 and pick Slumdog? Umm.... Sunshine Cleaners?

Oops, I accidentally typed "Sinshine."
Well, that actually sounds about right.

What's the worst?
"Confessions of a Shopaholic." I'm sad to even say I saw that movie. Who gave that script a green light? They should (shakes head)...not have a job.

What are your top 3 or 5 all-time favorite tv shows?
(Without missing a beat) Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman. Lost. The Office. Alias. Gosh, I don't know... Veronica Mars... or My Boys?

It doesn't have to be exactly five.
Okay then, Veronica Mars and My Boys. Growing up it was Saved by the Bell and Full House.

Great segueway into my next question! Have you ever participated in a Saved By the Bell trivia contest?
Uhh... yes, and won second place! But that was back in the day when people didn't really utilize the internet, and I went online to the trivia pages and read up on a lot of info about the show. Some people would call that cheating, but... I would go with what Zach Morris would say, which is... freeze time and it makes it all okay. Remember when Slater's pet lizard dies? (At this time Ginger proceeds to sing word for word the song Jessie Spano sang at the lizard's funeral) "...In that big chameleon banquet in the sky!"

Wow. Okay... Have you ever gone on a local morning show to quite literally cry like a baby?
Uh, yes. It was called... "How cool are you?" Or something like that. It was on a 6:00 am news show. Local news, with Stormy the Weather Dog. They had people on to do stupid human tricks, but they must not have been very talented because I made the finals. But I totally got gypped in the finals, because I got beat by a woman that could shoot a lay up behind her back! That's not a stupid human trick. That's like a...skill!

Okay, this is a two part question...Would you consider yourself a good speller? (When I get to the word 'consider' she breaks out in "Consider Yourself" from Oliver.)
Anyways. Umm, I'm much better than I used to be. I can now spell cabin, anniversary, business, and Saturday, which was not the case 15 years ago.

Well then the second part of that question, is have you ever won a spelling bee?
Well, no, because I was technically runner-up.... Oh! Hold on! Someone's at my door. I'm going to have to let you go!

Oh! Uhh... okay!
Okay! (hangs up)

Friday, May 22, 2009

Does this count... my weekend if I work both Saturday and Sunday?

Memorial Day weekend is upon us and once again I've managed to not have to attend any graduations.  I love being supportive, I would just rather be able to sit next to the person and not have air horns blaring all around.  And once again I am also not in Galveston with the entire extended family.

So, what am I doing?  So kind of you to ask.

1.  Watching the season premiere of Glee on Hulu.  I've started it and am already deliriously addicted to this little show.  Can't wait for the full season in the fall.
2.  Borrowed a computer monitor to finally pull all of the documents off of my CPU from college.  Who knows what choice delights await my searching?  I have a feeling it could be a gold mine of sorts.  The original monitor died in 2005 and I haven't had the time or energy to remedy the situation.
3.  Running OUTSIDE this evening.  Why would this possibly make my list?  Monday the high was 107 degrees.  There had been already 6 consecutive days in the 100's.  Today is cloudy with a high of 75.  Glorious.
4.  Working, but I love what I do AND there will be over 200 helium balloons in my room this weekend.  The temptation to teach with a helium voice may prove to be too strong even for my best intentions.  Apologies now for any voicemails left in a slightly higher register.
5.  Meeting a Texan from the blogosphere!  Talk about 6 degrees of Kevin Bacon.  Val sent me to Annie's blog years ago, Annie mentioned Andy, and Jordan commented on Andy's blog.  As soon as I discovered this transplanted Aggie I started following her on google reader.  Long story short - we are meeting up on Memorial Day.  I think our moms had been suggesting this for a while.  They should both be so pleased with us.
6.  And finally for my next trick... I'm off on Tuesday.  Monday is my usual weekend, so the holiday pushes my weekend to Tuesday.  What to do?  (Deep breath.)  I know exactly what to do.  Somehow I called a local theatre and am auditioning for their 2009-2010 season.  This is another one of those get out of the car moments.

Happy Weekending!

Monday, May 18, 2009

The Weekenders*

Friday I stayed at work later than usual. Because I was working on work things. Big, important work things that required plenty of writing, editing, formatting, importing, highlighting, stapling, and sighing. Today I am realizing that I didn’t BOLD enough or make clear enough because I had forgotten that not everyone interprets information the same way (ie the right way). Today I am replying with plenty of “Actually...” emails. “Just to be clear...” emails. “You’re still not understanding me...” emails. And still I am sighing.

But on Friday I left work feeling accomplished and satisfied and ready-for-the-weekend-y! Our usual “Friday Night Fun” group met up for pizza and MarioKart and backyard adventuring. Because everything is an adventure when little ones are involved. Nearly two-year-old Jack was delighted and astounded (rightfully so) by my ability to throw a ball into the tree branches and catch it again. Truly a feat of magical genius; Harry Potter would be proud.

Friday night ended with what I thought would be a SHORT Skype conversation with G. At the point when she exclaimed “I’m going to interview you for the blog!” I knew all hope of making it to bed before 12:30 was lost. AND may I state for the record that I was playing the Annie soundtrack at the time because GINGER had been singing “Maybe!” She just likes to leave out important details sometimes....

Saturday: woke up at 9am. Thought “Forget that!” and turned Gilmore Girls on to lull me back to sleep. Woke again at 12pm. Sleep WIN! Later on I met Stacy and Tamara at the movie theater to see “Wolverine,” as I’d already seen “Star Trek.” Geek cred WIN!

After church yesterday I went shopping and ended up coming home with new tennis shoes and fun squishy comfy flip flops (thank you Buy One Get One ½ Price sale!). Are you seeing the cushioning on these things? My feet are in love with me today.

I couldn’t continue to ignore the gorgeous sunny weather we were blessed with, so I hit the pool for a while once I got back to my apartment. I love summer!

Later in the afternoon I came up to the office armed with pink balloons, a princess crown, and a High School Musical 3 birthday banner to help Tamara decorate Stacy’s office. I mean, if Troy and Gabriella’s giant faces aren’t going to make your birthday happy, I honestly don’t know what will. Tamara and I had fun with streamers and ladders and ribbon, and it all ended up looking quite festive, if I do say so myself!

I spent the evening cleaning my kitchen and creating Oreo Truffles for the birthday celebrations today, which always takes longer than I plan for it to. But it’s always very much wonderfully worth it, because that is one of my very favoritest desserts! Brainwave this time around: used my Magic Bullet to crush the Oreos! It truly was magic. Harry Potter would be proud.

Today: Happy Birthday, Stacy! Our whole department (all four of us) went out to lunch at Rudy’s for some tasty Texas barbecue. And don’t try to tell me you’re not jealous, because I can hear your stomach growling from here! A little while after we got back it was time for the office to sing Happy Birthday- which undoubetly results in a roomful of people mentally thinking “Hope it’s chocolate for me” (it is, actually—chocolate AND Oreo, to be exact).

Tonight: Cleaning the apartment. Because tomorrow? Is High School Musical 3 movie night at my apartment! Oh, don’t worry, readers. I can feel your jealousy emanating through the computer screen. But you will be there in spirit. And in song. ‘Cause you are the music in me.

*Man, I love that show. So clever. So hilarious. I have been anxiously anticipating it's release on DVD for years. Any day now...right? Oh well. Later days!

Friday, May 15, 2009

Maybe he's rich. A money interview.

Valerie is currently playing the soundtrack to Annie during our Skype conversation. Now to begin the interview....

Me: What is it like having such a wonderful older sister?

Val: Am I answering as though you're asking the question? Or like a third person is asking? Okay....What is it like. Well, it's a barrel of laughs, I'll tell you that much, although much of the laughter is definitely yours.

Me: I just wanted to start out with a good question. Ok. Number two. Who is your current crush?

Val: Laughter... GUY PATTERSON.

Ginger: Who?

Val: Haven't you seen That Thing You Do? He's the charming, hilarious, nice guy drummer!

Ginger: Right. I forgot that you live in a movie.

Val: (sigh) If only.

Ginger: Ok. Really juicy for our HUGE readership. (Now laughing because Valerie held up Apple Juice to the camera.) Nice. No. What was the worst thing that you did by the time you were in 8th grade?

Val: There could be that time I tried to open my sister's eyes with pencils... oh wait, that was you. Or that time I caused my sister to have to get stitches in the back of her head... no wait, that was you. OR that other time I made my sister fall off her bike and break her fingers... WAIT. You again.

Ginger: Um. Nice. Way to be a difficult interview. I don't buy the angel schtick. Ok, what's the worse punishment you ever received?

Val: (Thinking hard.) I mean, you should really ask if there is an interesting answer to the question before you start typing.... I mean, I was grounded twice. And I was probably in about fifth grade, so it's not like I really missed a lot of social interaction. And we weren't really allowed to watch TV anyways, so what did that do? I mean... although I do remember getting yelled at for my messy room more than... 700 times.

Ginger: Ok. Then. Lightning round. Already. What is your favorite blog to read every day?

Val: That's mean. Really mean. Hold on. I gotta look at Google Reader.... Just one?

Ginger: Just one.

Val: Are you typing everything I say? Umm.

Ginger: The people want to know. You are like blog queen. Give you a crown.

Val: Yes, because I read a lot of blogs... not just one. But if I could only pick one, I would have to say... Fail Blog. But if I could add to that I would include... Annie, Dani, and Shani. Hey, that RHYMES! And Julie and Katie.

Ginger: That's funny. Ok. Next one. Who is the meanest person that you know?

Val: Gosh... Who's the meanest person? YOU. When you are talking about other people.

Ginger: What?

Val: Well, I can't say someone for real. In all reality, probably me. (laughs)

Ginger: I buy that. What movie are you most looking forward to coming out this summer?

Val: Hmm... Are you writing, "pretending to think this through?" and actually meaning HARRY POTTER AND THE HALF-BLOOD PRINCE which premieres in theaters this JULY 15th?

Ginger: Two months from today!!! Wingardium Leviosa!

Val: I've already said that phrase twice tonight.

Ginger: I use Alohomora as a greeting.

Val: (laughing)

Ginger: So... how bout that Lost finale?

Val: Oh my gosh. That show just blew my mind all over my face.

Ginger: Sounds graphic. Like Sunshine Cleaners.

Val: No, just tense... and also insane.

Ginger: What book are you reading right now? The O'Malley series? Flight 914 is down?

Val: (Geller gesture from friends) I just finished Angels and Demons and now I'm on a book called Can You Keep A Secret, very shallow, very thin story-line and I call it a "pool book." I take it when I go out to the pool.

Ginger: What is in your purse?

Val: (Rolls eyes and then sighs) Oh! Have you seen my new purse?

Ginger: I have a new purse too! Here's mine. (Show each other purses.)

Val: You've always got to elbow your way in and steal the spotlight.... My handy dandy planner which has Harry Potter, The Office, Hairspray, and Jim Halpert and movie stuff on it like Lord of the Rings and Sound of Music. Ok. Um. My calendar that says you were visiting in March. Nail file. Trident gum. Check book. Halls fruit breezers for when I get a sore throat. Movie ticket for Star Trek. Winter Green tic tacs. Sun glasses. Kleenex. This is so not exciting.

Ginger: Where's the knife?

Val: You mean lip gloss? Business cards? Oh, there's those earrings! Apparently my Eiffel tower earrings have been in here.

Ginger: Those could work as a knife.

Val: Movie ticket to Coraline.

Ginger: OOOH.

Val: Good movie. Oh, business card for my hair dresser.

Ginger: I thought it was one of those cards that tell you what your name means, like Valerie... woman of God. What does your name mean?

Ginger: To be annoying?

Val: Ha. Starbucks gift card that I've had since Christmas because I don't drink coffee or go to Starbucks.

Ginger: Send it to me!!!

Val: Thas for meee. Last thing. A really funny fortune from one time when we out to get a fortune. Wait. I mean Chinese food.

Ginger: How was that palm reader? What does it say?

Val: First of all, I didn't get the fortune. You have to keep in mind that Kyle got this. Trust me... Okay, it says, "If you've got it, flaunt it."

Ginger: (Laughs)

Valerie: Exactly.

Ginger: Sounds like just desserts to me.

Val: (Laughs) Not touching it! Not playing that game, Morby. Okay... coolest part. The top of my purse is magnetic!

Ginger: This has been really educational.

Val: I'm sure it has.

Ginger: That's about it. Um. When are we actually hanging out next?

Val: Well, theoretically I'm coming to Arizona, but seeing how it is summer, I'm thinking not so much.

Ginger: Hey. It's only 105 on Sunday. Suck it up. Or, I could just come home for the 4th of July.

Val: Why don't you go ahead and do that since you are considering going ahead and doing that.

Ginger: Good deal, and that's a wrap. Wait, no. This is a rap...

Val: NO, can we just skip the corny jokes?

Ginger: Ok. The End.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

A Conversation.

Me: Last night I was IN BED and UNDER THE COVERS before 10:30! I was so excited!

Mom: Yeah, wow, that does sound… exciting.

Me: Well… I was proud of myself. And maybe I can do it again tonight except CRAP! I probably need to blog tonight…. That ALWAYS takes longer than I think it will!

Mom: I’ll bet it does. That’s why I don’t have a blog!

Me: Really? That’s why you don’t have a blog?

Mom: No, really I guess it would be the stress. Especially the fact that you SHARE a blog! I would get stressed out knowing the other person is waiting on me!

Me: That does come into play….

Mom: Yeah, I can’t imagine.

Me: Well what am I going to blog about?

Mom: Umm… I guess you could talk about your favorite teachers? Or maybe your least favorite teachers? How about the stoplight in the cafeteria?

Me: I think Ginger’s covered that….

Mom: Can you talk about a time you got in trouble?

Me: Haha… what time were you thinking about? Can you think of a time??

Mom: No, I can’t! What times were there?

Me: Well, I know in 7th grade I got a discipline slip…

Mom: You did??

Me: Yeah, remember? The whole class was talking and Mrs. Geyser got fed up so she wrote each of us a discipline slip!

Mom: Oh yeah… How terrible. Well is that the only time?

Me: I remember getting in trouble in kindergarten! Mrs. McQuillin had to come out to the van to talk to you after class because Meredith and I were being rowdy and we pulled our arms inside our sweatshirts and were flapping them around when we were supposed to be quiet.

Mom: Yes, you were a real wild child!

Me: Haha! Well, that’s all I can think of! Unless you count that time we had to meet with my fifth grade teacher before school! But I think that’s because my grades were slipping….

Mom: Yeah, they must have gotten all the way down to a 90 or something.

Me: Probably something like that… I guess I could write about how I get to bowling for work tomorrow! OH! Must not forget to bring socks!

Mom: That would be gross. Don’t forget to take your socks.

Me: I could write about… going to dinner at Grandma’s tonight! How she made me vegetable soup, and then we watched American Idol?

Mom: And then you could talk about that guy you hate!

Me: Uggh! Adam Lambert! I can’t stand him! And he was on the cover of my Entertainment Weekly this week! What’s THAT about??

Mom: See? There you go.

Me: This is good. Great starting off point. Hey, do you mind if I use part of our conversation in my blog?

Friday, May 8, 2009

Leftover Fridays

I used to love going to potluck meals as a kid.  Maybe it was the fact that there were so many varieties of food available.  Where else can you put meatballs, fried chicken, three kinds of rolls, macaroni and cheese, spaghetti, and enchiladas all on your plate?  As I've grown older (and wiser) I've come to fear potluck meals, and that's not just because I believe that the dishes could have been prepared around pet hair.  We don't have potluck meals at my church and I do not choose cafeteria style dining.

When I worked for a camp full time we had a weekly chapel service and meal that we would enjoy together.  That meal was made up of a smorgasbord of everything leftover from the previous weekend's conference and retreat groups.  I usually made the mistake of choosing the first food that looked both safe and somewhat nourishing.  Oddly enough, most of us would cross our fingers for meatloaf.  It was a safe option.  Otherwise you might fill one of the little sections of your styrofoam plate with something that's just "meh" when you could have found the one secret awesome item of the day.  

Today is potluck Friday.  I brought some random items and hope you will supply the rest.

1.  Last Saturday night during service a third grader brought up close to $20 to put in the offering.  He placed each small bill in slowly and then turned to walk away.  His shoulders sagged and he took a deep breath before turning back around and pulling out ten more dollars.  He threw the bills in the bucket and said quietly, "Aw screw it."

2.  I'm wondering if any of the new movies out are worth seeing.  I tend to just go to the movies with a group of young moms now who want to see things their husbands wouldn't want to see.  Thus Bride Wars and 17 Again were the last two movies I saw in the theatre.  Someone please help.

3.  Has anyone ever read Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard?  It came highly recommended, not to mention  that it won the Pulitzer Prize.  I can't get past the 2nd chapter.  Is it worth pushing through?

4.  The high was 105 degrees here yesterday.

5.  I'm looking into U2 tickets.  Which performer would you pay the most to see?  How much would you pay to see them?

6.  I've watched the new Pride and Prejudice more times that I care to say and unlike my sister, I am not a repeat movie watcher.  What's your go-to-movie to play in the background or watch multiple times?  (Just to change things up I put in the A&E Colin Firth version the other night.)

7.  What was your favorite book or series to read as a child?  I was taken in by The Babysitters Club, American Girls, The Mandy Series, and of course... Jeanette Oke books.

8.  I have had two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches in my entire life.  I have no desire to increase that number.

9.  Check out this recent study that found that out of all the discretionary items, broadband internet was the last thing a consumer would give up.  I personally went without internet access for 6 months  out of '08-'09 so I wouldn't be in this same boat.  You?

10.  I went to lunch yesterday for a co-workers 30th birthday.  Everyone started talking about the age they have dreaded the most.  Three people threw out the number 26.  What in the world?  (Everyone at the table was between the ages of 26-31.)

11.  Anything else my day might be missing?

And that's all I've got.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009


I write a journal entry every every night before bed. Decided to share a few random entries portions with you. Enjoy!

6/26/06 12:12 AM
Okay, so my fear of roaches has reached an all new level. Just a few minutes ago I was in Grandma’s front bedroom when I saw one on the wall. I flipped out and leaped into the fetal position in the blue chair, seriously considering waking someone up and trying to get them to kill it. BUT I decided to be a big girl and do it myself. By now it had crawled over my bed and I didn’t want it to fall into my sheets so I was gonna use my shoe to get it crawling the other way, but instead it flew off the wall STRAIGHT AT ME! I completely freaked out and did a backwards somersault off the bed and landed half on the floor and half on the wooden rocker, but I didn’t care. I began scooting close to the wall and squealing, completely panicked. “Forget this,” I thought. I grabbed my pillow, Teddy, my phone, pajamas, and this journal and bolted. No way am I sleeping in there tonight! I’m in the middle bedroom but still shaky and FREAKED out. It will take me a while to calm down. Hmm… is there a name for this? All I can say is there better not by any freakin roaches in here or I’m sleeping in my car!

9/28/06 10:55 PM
Today after work Ginger and I ate at Chick-fil-A and then watched the Office. Hilarious!
Oh! Haha- when we were at Chick-fil-A Ginger said something and I go “Word.” And then I paused and gave her a weird look like, “Why did I just say word?” and Ginger spewed Diet Coke EVERYWHERE and we just laughed and laughed for about 5 minutes. It was so funny.

12/28/06 11:23 PM
I cut my finger. Off. I cut the tip of my finger off. With my razor. It bled. A lot. It hurt. A lot. Blood. Pain. Bye.
TGIF tomorrow!
Oh- before the incident, Carter and Dawson and I watched The Office, some of the best of Jimmy Fallon, and the end of the Chipmunks movie. Very diverse. And we had malts. Mmm… I tell you what, I could use a malt right now, me and my finger. Or what’s left of it anyway….


I hate our ABC station. There was “bad weather” so they cut in on LOST! Grrr… I’m going to stab someone in the eye!! Holy cow.

5/9/07 10:41 PM
Oh my gosh! Lost is SO creepy and scary! I thought I was watching a horror movie or something! I mean, what’s with the terrifying Jacob’s shack? Is this The Blair Island Project?! Holy Jeez. And is Locke really DEAD?! WHAT THE HECK!!

6/16/07 12:22 AM
I’m tired. Wow.
Man, I really love Gilmore Girls. I know I’ve said this before, but yeah.
Watched half of Pearl Harbor this evening.
Tired. Looking forward to sleeping in!
I have three round little bumps that form a triangle on the palm of my left hand. That’s weird, right? Especially since I don’t recall like… poking myself, or getting bitten or something. Maybe… I was abducted by aliens?

8/20/07 9:01 PM
I got an email from Jason Marsden today!! The Jason Marsden, of Step By Step, Boy Meets World, Full House, the Weekenders, and Goofy Movie!!! Can’t believe it! J That’s so cool!!

1/3/08 10:16 PM
I found my social security card today! Finally… I looked for a LONG time last night and a LONG time today before finding it—in my wallet. Yeah. Don’t say anything.

Friday, May 1, 2009


People are always asking us, "What makes you so quirky?"  (That's a really polite way of wondering why we are obsessed with film, literature, and our family.  Someone recently went as far as to claim that I am insane.  I will choose to take this both in stride and as a compliment.  This is something that you must often do when you are as easily amused with your own self as we happen to be.)

"We are each a combination of many factors woven together out of the joys and sorrows of life.  We're the product of our choices.  We're the result of what was done for us or to us by our parents.  What were the ingredients that made you who you are?"

Well Luci Swindoll, I'm so glad you asked.

Val and I (and the bonus Jonas, Clay) are the result of a house that played a lot of classical music and watched a lot of the 3 Stooges.  We grew up eating picnics in the park on Sunday afternoons, attending thousands of band and choir concerts, and memorizing our own home movies.  That's right, if you don't know what we are quoting, we are probably quoting the childhood version of ourselves.

If your family attended church, you more than likely went out to lunch on Sunday.  This was not the case for our family. (Which is possibly the reason that I ate out every Sunday for lunch while in college.)  We usually enjoyed grilled cheese sandwiches while fighting over... err... reading the comics.

Soft drinks (Cokes) were reserved for special occasions.  (Which is possibly the reason I lived off of coke throughout college.)  But being the especially sneaky children that we were, we often used to drink cokes in the closet under the stairway and then hide the cans in the various drawers and crevices, only to act totally dumbfounded by such an item a few months later when mom discovered the cans.  Why we didn't throw them away when she was at the grocery store I will never know.

We were only allowed two or three Oreos for dessert.  (Which is possibly the reason you will still find the container for Oreos upstairs when we all come home for holidays.)  I discovered early on that you can fight this system.  Simply drop two Oreos into the bottom of your cup of milk and carry the three you are allowed to the table.  Although the extra Oreos will be soggy, you will have achieved a successful breaking of the rules right in front of the enemy.

I would not recommend that you allow your children to take their carrots or vitamins to "finish outside."  We didn't finish them.  We pushed the carrots and vitamins through the floorboards of our playhouse.  Our parents didn't realize that they were giving us so much more than just a place to let our imaginations run wild. 

We all read the paper, just different sections of it.  The T.V. was reserved for the weekend (or whenever mom and dad left the house.  So glad the garage door was so noisy.  "Run!  They're home.  Val, start playing the piano.  Hurry, Clay!")  Sugary cereals came three weeks out of the year (Happy Birthday to me from Lucky Charms) - and then any time you could win the battle over the mini boxes at the beach house.  I imagine we are the only kids who would try and wake up early to make sure you didn't get stuck with Apple Jacks.

We are a lucky family who still loves laughing in the kitchen and walking through the neighborhood.  We spent Advent around a wreath, and Easter at the Cha-Cha Church.  Those most loved are the brunt of countless jokes.  I pity any fool trying to enter this extended family.  We live on malts, BBQ, 7-layer dip, chocolate pie, sweet potato casserole, tiger butter, and cashews. 

My older cousin confessed to thinking us the strict family, but I know we had a fabulous childhood.  Thank you to mom and dad for:
-Doughnuts on Sunday Mornings
-Countless Family Vacations without a television producing some of the best memories.
-Music Lessons (and even getting to practice piano at 6:15am)
-Letting us try everything, even the things we were less than coordinated for (Ballet, tap, baton twirling, soccer, basketball, volleyball, softball, hockey, swim team, children's theatre, scouts, art class...)
-Breakfast for dinner
-Movie traditions on Christmas Day
-Wonderful examples of giving and prioritizing faith
-A wide appreciation for music
-A bizarre sense of humor
-The command to "Go outside and play!"
-Encouragement to do or be anything we so desire... even if we are a bit insane.

From home movies circa 1988-
Mom: What did you do today?
Ginger: I went to BSF...
Valerie: Blah, blah, yadda, shirt, paper...
Ginger:  And then I came home...
Valerie: Blah, blah, blah, babble...
Ginger:  And then I came home...
Valerie: Paper in the sink...
Ginger:  AND THEN I CAME HOME and had my quiet time.
Valerie:  Pizza!