Saturday, December 27, 2008

Ages 8 and up

I have little cousins. And I love them. No, really, I do. They are so excited to see us and talk and play.

But they run constantly. They yell constantly. They get mad at you easily... and you know that as "the older one" you need to be the example and not get mad back, or not respond at all. And you definitely definitely should NOT call them Mr. Dumb Butt, or Sir Soggy Pants, or a Whaaaaaaa-bulance ('ambulance'...get it?). And you can't say dang it, or shut up, or stupid, or crap.... and don't jokingly say hell or damn. After all, there are little ears running around.
So, we sat down to play the boardgame Sorry with them. And the tagline "The game of sweet revenge" takes on a whole new meaning.

anonymous, yet mature cousin -"Oh Isaac! Looks like I HAVE to send you home. Again"
little cousin - "No! You've sent me home too much!"
A.Y.M.C. - "You've got the best position. Sorry Isaac."
little cousin - "It's been 'sorry Isaac' for the past six times."
A.Y.M.C. - I love this game.

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

The weather outside IS frightful

Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was stirring...

because of the funnel cloud.
Thank goodness for Rudolph, with his nose so bright.

P.S. I accidentally typed Rudolf, which reminded me of Adolf, which reminded me of my Christmas cookies. Because one of them has a little mustache and a swastika. Mom was horrified. I said, "Mom, I'm going to enjoy eating this little man." Don't even get me started on concentration camps.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Merry Chrismas Eve's Eve

Our Christmas feast with my Dad's parents consists of shrimp. Just boiled shrimp, coleslaw (dibs to Dad this year... it was really good), hushpuppies, and fries. Strange Christmas meal, I know. But we don't eat shrimp very often. Actually, unless you order it at a restaurant, we don't get it any other time of the year. Translation: we sit down and INHALE it. I believe we consumed 15 pounds this year. So, if you want to invite us for dinner, I would suggest serving something common. That way, we won't act like we're starving and scare you.


What cracks me up is that it always turns into this unspoken competition. We peel, eat, repeat... all the while eyeing everyone else's growing piles of discarded crustacean shells. Speed is not key here. But please don't stop eating. If you do, you'll realize you're getting full and than you're out. And nobody likes being out. Over the years, without anyone ever saying a word, teams have formed. We're pretty evenly matched. One boy and one girl. Things got a little switched up this year because of Jeff. But it's cool. If that's all the disruption he causes, I guess we can handle that.

Team We-Need-A-Bigger-Bowl

Team I-Need-to-Stop

Team Stop-Eating-Side-Dishes

Team Bottomless Pits


I'm not really sure who won this year. We never really declare a winner...because we cheat. Sometimes we stuff hushpuppies in our stack to make them look higher or we steal small handfuls from other plates. Nobody cheated this year, though. Full credit goes to each person's stinky leftovers.

Then we opened our pajamas. We always get pajamas from Memaw. And money. Mine this year were... well... very vibrant. Pepaw (who never sees what he helped pay for until we open it) looked at them and said, "Amy, obviously we were afraid you would get lost." Yeah... wow.

Monday, December 22, 2008

I always look in wardrobes

We watched Prince Caspian last night. The storyline was so changed by Disney that I have a hard time liking it (but Emily! we still enjoyed it and thank you for the Christmas present... so I am not disgruntled with your gift!). Reepicheep and Aslan are its only redeeming factors. I know I know, I'm talking about Chronicles of Narnia, AGAIN. I love them though. My Dad read them to the whole family so many times when I was little, I almost know them by heart. And watching it last night, I was struck again, by the powerful picture C.S. Lewis painted of Jesus through the untame Lion. Lucy always shames me in her utter adoration of him. I would like to think that I too would always love him, that I would shout with laughter while snuggling into his warmth, and trust him throughout it all. But I know I wouldn't. I would be Edmund, the traitor, Peter, the all-knowing, or Susan, the whiner. I mean, I teared up during the movie, just like I do in the book, when Peter and Susan find that they aren't coming back. The thought of never seeing Aslan again hurts me. Hello? Do I cry at the thought of being apart from Christ? Am I so caught up in the fantasy of Narnia, that I can't see my own shallow soil, my own treachery, arrogance and contentiousness? Something I have come to realize lately is this: God loves us. Groundbreaking isn't it? Hold on, I'm not finished. He desires us... but, He isn't throwing Himself at our feet. He wants us to pursue Him, to work at this relationship. Just like any relationship here on earth. I don't expect my friends to just love me, regardless of how I treat them (granted, most of you do a wonderful job, considering I don't return phone calls for 4-5 days). I have to give them me. Even more so for my family... although they get to experience the ugly sides of Amy more than my friends do. And still they love me. They forgive me, seventy times seventy times. I cannot take them for granted! I will work to make it work. I can't, no, I WON'T just assume they will always love because I am their sister/daughter/ friend. I want them to WANT to love me. I want them to get pleasure out of knowing me.... and so, I love them as best as I know how. And it's hard work, folks. Because I'm a wretched sinner and they are stinky rags and I don't always want to love them. But I have to.
The same with God, barring, of course, the whole "sin" thing on HIS part. Him loving us isn't the issue. He loves us. End of story. And He desperately desires that we love Him in return. But He isn't going to let it be easy. Because if it was easy, I would take it for granted. The harder I have to work at discovering Him and who He truly is, the more passionate I will become and the closer I will cling. So.... it's back to square one, as I dust off my clothes and try, once again, to change my path back towards the One who even allowed me to stand back up in the first place.

P.S. Disney... The Voyage of the Dawn Treader is next. Try to curb the "story changing" department as much as you possibly can. Because if you mess up the dragon, the blackness, Deathwater Island, the Duffers, or worst of all, Eustace Clarence Scrubb who hadn't any friends, this girl will not be happy.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Here It Comes

The sun is out!! It's been all week! Foggy, dark, cloudy, gray, drizzling... and worst of the worst: warm. That's what it has been like for FOREVER. It's so hard to be cheerful when it looks like that outside. Lately, it's been hard to be cheerful anyway, but the weather definitely definitely not helping. But now... the sun is laughing through my window and my body's Vitamin D machinery is chugging. And bonus: It turned cold. Finally! I was wearing a t-shirt last night. It was probably 70 degrees. It's hard to watch White Christmas in shorts and a t-shirt. If I don't watch myself, the bitterness can be consuming. Like when Danny Kaye steps to the window of the train and is like, "Hey! I think we took the wrong train! Yeah! It's all green out here!" I'm always like "Welcome to my LIFE, man! Geez. Go dance on a boat or something and shut up." Grrr.

But... no more. It's below 40 and the sun is shining and the tank is clean. And I'm going to grow myself a giant afro. See? How can you not smile?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

"And that's all you have to know, really."

You should watch this. I watched it the other night and it's hilarious. Probably one of the best presentations of the Christmas play by Hollywood that I've ever seen. Of course, when Hollywood was black and white it was a little different.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Oh yeah.

I love this song. I don't care if it's cliche to like it.

Please hold up your left hand

You know you're getting old when you notice two things about a strange guy:

1) Why yes, you are quite handsome.
2) Dang. Wedding ring.

I use to NEVER notice wedding bands. My friends would ask me, "Well... did he have on a ring?!" And I was always, "Heck if I know." But now, I notice. Immediately. This disturbs me.

Oh well. This guy was so pitiful... I couldn't help but smile. I was shopping with Mom and as I walked by, he goes, "Excuse me. Could you help me?" He held up three purses. One was a dark shiny chocolate, another was a soft sandy tan, and the third was a kind of copper/sienna blend. The third one was weird. He looked at me and goes, "She said she wanted a brown purse." Poor guy. He'd never thought there would be more than one option.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

lubdub-lubdub-lubdub-lubdub

Once upon a time, there was a girl. And she did have good characterisitcs. She was beautiful, compassionate, modest, talented, intelligent... and very very humble. But sometimes, she would do incredibly stupid things. For example: Drink coffee after 7:30 PM. Her father asked her if she wanted any. She wasn't in the least bit tired, so she knew she didn't need a caffeine rush. And she knew she had to get up early to go to school, so she knew she didn't want to lie in bed and count the ceiling dots. And she knew she shouldn't... but like I said before, she could be really really dumb sometimes. And sooo.... she drank it. It was delicious. The dark mug warmed her chilly hands, and the steam made her face flush. Her throat burned, in a nice, late night fire kind of way. And she studied and enjoyed the sensations.

And then, because she wasn't moving around at all, but was only curled up with an ATI book... her heartbeat kicked it up a notch. Her blood raced, almost audibly through her veins, and she's pretty dang sure her pupils dilated. But she got way more studying done than she thought she would. But now, it's nearly midnight and wide awake doesn't even come close to explaining the alertness of her brain.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

For He is good

It's Thanksgiving! And you know what that means.... a list!!

I am thankful for:

1) First and foremost, Jesus, for choosing me. I still don't know why.
2) My huge, chaotic, bossy, game-loving, loyal, 5-pizza family
3) More specifically, my parents, who have stayed together for 30+ years and loved us
4) Friends I would take a bullet for
5) That all four of my grandparents are still alive
6) To be able to worship without fear of being arrested or killed
7) My home, with a huge deck, wood floors, and a green bedroom
8) The piano
9) Clear Creek Christmas Tree Farm
10) Libraries
11) All of the Hogue children
12) Flannel sheets
13) Marshmallow + chocolate + graham crackers
14) Clean, easily accessible drinking water
15) Indoor bathrooms with running hot water
16) Grocery stores only 20 minutes away (because we ate 6 dozen eggs in the last five days!)
17) The ability to see the stars last night
18) Handel's Messiah
19) For having absolutely no clue how a boyfriend/girlfriend relationship works

I want to write more, but my computer is needed for a late night movie in the girls room.

14)

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Can You make it snappy, God? I'm in a hurry.

It's my own fault. I haven't been chasing after God. I haven't been looking for Him. My time with Him consists of occasionally reading His book, and giving half of my attention to self-oriented prayers. "My eyes are dry. My faith is old. My heart is hard, and my prayers are cold."

And so now.... now when I really need to know what He wants me to do... now, when I need to be curled up in His arms listening fervently to His words.... now is when I feel confused, wet, cold, and all on my own. I wish I could take all of the time I SHOULD have spent with Him in the last few years of my life and make one big smoothie out of it. Chug chug chug. Done. Thanks God. I'm glad You gave me an answer, because I sure as heck had no idea. Thank you for giving me the serenity of Your Will. But that's the problem, isn't it? I want it to be easy and to receive a revelation at the end. So, what if it's not star-studded? What if I have no idea of what I just read? Do I quit? What am I saying? That He isn't worth even a tiny bit of brain struggle?

So.... there can't be one colossal Bible filled smoothie. I've got to start down here, at the bottom, in the dirt. Picking myself up out of the mud is a daily part of the process of Christianity. For "I know how I ought to be. Alive to you and dead to me."

Saturday, November 22, 2008

dreading this

Caleb - "Whose Auburn playing this week?"
Dad - "Nobody."
Caleb - "Why?"
Dad - "They're preparing for the slaughter."

And if one of my Alabama fan friends makes an unnecessary remark, I will hunt you down, burn you at the stake, bury you alive, and keep you on bread and water for three days.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Life Lessons

In the past seven days, I have learned...

1) When eating in the car and you feel something fall from your food, give your clothes a good lookover before going into a store.

2) Don't tell the vet that your dog doesn't bite. It's a dog. All dogs bite. "Uh... it looks like we're gonna have to sedate him."

3) Alisa misses me. She said so.

4) Target has amazing shoes. I just don't wear their sizes.

5) Keep up with the Inbox on the kitchen counter. A credit card bill doesn't come in with Trumpets and Horns. It will just lay there quietly, as the due date looms.

6) If you have anything to do with an ('an' sounds weird) University office, call ahead. Because you will walk a mile, wait forever, and inevidably, not have everything you need.

7)Two and a half? A half, Dad? How does that work?

8)I don't like High School Musical 2. If you are glad of this, don't ask my opinion on number one.

9) I don't dream very much compared to some people.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Thanks Logan

The Patience of Ordinary Things- by Pat Schneider


It is a kind of love, is it not?
How the cup holds the tea,


How the chair stands sturdy and foursquare,
How the floor receives the bottoms of shoes


Or toes. How soles of feet know
Where they're supposed to be.


I've been thinking about the patience
Of ordinary things, how clothes


Wait respectfully in closets
And soap dries quietly in the dish,


And towels drink the wet
From the skin of the back.


And the lovely repetition of stairs,
And what is more generous than a window?

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Someone move this walking carpet...

I stole this from a friend. It's the gold medalist of my YouTube experiences.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Dimples and eyebrows

Getting to know the younger two:

Dalton, 12 yoa- I've seen your pictures on facebook
Me - You have facebook?
Dalton - No. But I have gmail. (head jerk) You can look me up sometime.
Me - Yeah, and go to jail.

Shafer, 9 yoa - (on the giant exercise ball, doing a crunch) - Uuuaaaggghhh!
Me - Whoa! Check out those abs!
Shafer - Man, I'll tell you who has great abs... Logan! His are awesome!

Fantastic. The more I get to know this family, the more I love them.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Stupidity

It irritates me to no end when I hear people saying they won't vote. Even my friends. Whether they didn't get registration information out in time, or they don't know where to go, or "it's pointless anyway... we're a red state" or "one little vote staying home doesn't matter" or they think it's silly how I think that one vote can change the world....!!! Augh!! No, one freaking vote won't change the world. But go and find out how many "one-vote" representatives of our country's population stayed home... thinking "One vote won't matter! What the heck is the big deal?" 1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1+1.... eventually makes millions, my friends.

Why do people take this so lightly? We have a chance to decide who our next leader will be, and you're too lazy to go fill out a piece of paper?! It's important! And as Christians, I think we have an even stricter calling. To perform our duty as first and foremost, 1) a child of God, and 2) an American citizen. We should be running these candidates through a much more intense filter than the world does! But we don't! It's ashaming to see your nonchalance in such an important decision regarding the future of our country.

So go ahead, Christians. Sit at home. Don't vote. Everyone else in this country has done such a bang-up job of destroying the morals and values that all those men in the Revolutionary War fought and died for.... you might as well join the cause and not care, either.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

yawnpalooza

I have an older adult class. And yikes is it boring. I mean, here-are-your-powerpoints-now-sit-there-for-2-or-3-hours-while-I-read-them-verbatum boring.

Anyway, maybe it was delirium that made this funny to me. Because nobody else laughed. I just ducked behind my pencil and choked.

Teacher, in older adult, monotone voice: "Patients with Alzeheimers should not smoke. (thank you, I'm glad i'm paying to receive this infomation) Well, for 2 reasons: 1) For health reasons, which are obvious. And 2) They might set the house on fire. And this would not be good." (Unless you're a pyromaniac)

Oh, how I giggled. But reviewing it now, I think it was totally delirium.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Tell me why. I want to know.

Today I called a friend. He's a good friend. Very very patient with my slowness in returning calls. Very very honest in his conversation. I'm pretty sure we talked for an hour and a half. There's a girl he likes. A lot. It's delightful.

You can call it nosy, you can call it female, you can call it stupid, I don't care! BUT, I love love love asking my friends why they like someone. I want to hear it. I love making them dig for words to describe this new found feeling. I want them to think about other things besides the fact that she's beautiful when she stands in the sun and the wind blows her hair or the fact that he's sensitive (what does that mean, anyway?). It's just that... you are my friend. And I am so happy that you have found someone with whom you could possibly grow old. Now tell me why! And most of the time, they do. Because I am willing to listen in silence while they fumble for the right words. I'm not trying to be the devil's advocate, friend, but if all you can say is that he has great biceps, calves, and nice teeth.... I'm sorry, but I will not giggle along with you. Can anyone define shallow?

Anyway, I was talking to said friend and I asked him why. And the floodgates opened! This guy is one of the most logical, eloquent, intelligent guys I know and he was positively stammering. He was repeating himself, tripping over sentences, and stuttering, yet, could not stop talking. I hardly said a word for a good 30 minutes. And he told me why he liked her. It was for her forthrightness, her modesty, her gracefulness, her way of speaking, her beauty, her adventurous spirit, her passion for her work, her love of her family, her way with children, her integrity, her walk with Jesus.... he went on and on and on. I usually get this conversation from girls, so listening to a guy explain what caught his attention was fascinating (and educational). He's trying to keep his emotions in check because he knows that it is possible nothing will come of it and he will say "God is good" regardless. But, oh, how he admires her!

And it caught me: why is this kind of love so amazing to me? Is it because it's just a tiny, little, microscopic, dust-speck of what God has bathed us in? Is it knowing that the only way we can even attempt to love here on earth is because He held our hand and showed us how to do it? He died for me because He was in love with me. He would have done it for just me. I ravish His heart with just one look. He has prepared the feast and sent me the invitation.
And Gomer is my name.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Welcome to the Psych Ward

The dry erase board hung alone. Its message was clear.

New Rule: Keep your pants pulled up
OR
Put on a hospital gown
OR
Stay in your room

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

For lung cancer, press one now

Ring. Ring. Ring. Ring.

- Hello?
- Mrs. Porter? (please read this is a sloooow, hoarse, cigarette-filled voice)
- No, this is her daughter.
- Honey, does your mama have a satellite or cable?
- No ma'am.
- Do ya' think she'd be interested in gettin' a dish?
- I know without a doubt she most certainly is not.
- Well, ooookay. Thank ya' hon'

I must say, this was the most unautomated sales call I have ever received.

Monday, October 6, 2008

oh dog it

This is Jack. A year ago, anyway. And this is courtesy of Jon Meeks's photography skills and Ryan Porter's hand.



This is what he looked like yesterday. He looks like Gollum in this picture.


He was so guilty: ears back, tail tucked, eyes wide, head sunk low. He was pressing himself against the wall as we piled out of the suburban. Dad rolled his eyes, "Alright, look around! Find out what the dog chewed!" I don't know whether to admire him for sticking around, or just call him stupid.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

happy birthday to me

Let's pretend I am a world traveler. These are some of my hotel choices.

This is an old prison in England. Well, it used to be a prison. But you can still lock yourself up at night.


This one's in Mexico. Duh.


It's called a yurt. Say it out loud... because it's fun.

Wales.... yes, one day.


Bring your own water and toilet paper.


It's a cave! In Arizona! But, I don't really want to go to Arizona.


Hooray for treehouses! They say you can watch the jaguars on the jungle floor below you. But I know without a shadow of a doubt that jaguars can climb trees. So, I'll just look at the picture, thank you.


Hopefully, your neighbor will NOT be a blockheaded Bracegirdle from Hardbottle.

No dalmation

I am here. I promise that I will never turn to the dark-side of "I-have-a-blog-but-I-only-write-on-it-once-a-year." Lame. Lame lame lame. And don't tell me you don't have time! I have friends who work full time, are in graduate programs, are planning weddings and they update frequently. And don't say you don't know what to write about! You woke up this morning didn't you? You're breathing, aren't you? Write about the awesome God who allows your heart to keep beating, your DNA to correct its own damage, and your loops of Henley to function.


I have community clinicals this semester... which means several things:
1) Different schedule every week
2) End of the day thoughts of "Why was this necessary?"
3) Lots of people, lots of different situations
4) Schedule gaps that allow for kick-butt workout programs at UAB's REC

Two weeks ago, I had to spend a day in a firestation and ride with the rescue team. My dad is a fireman, so I had a small (very small) picture of how things run here. I had been in several stations, had talked to different guys... but I was still nervous. I mean, Dad was always there with me. I was on my own here for eight hours. Gulp. Plus, heck, I'll be honest, most Birmingham stations have 1-2 pretty good-looking guys.
So I'm there at eight... shift change, I'm in the way, I'll just make myself invisible. It was a slow day in Birmingham. Nobody got shot or stabbed. We went out twice, one of which got canceled before we got there. It was funny because they were obviously a little embarrassed that they weren't able to show the young nursing student the dashing life of a fireman. I know they enjoy the assumptions everyone has about them. The whole idea of "We save people's lives, run into burning buildings, and look good while doing." Don't get me wrong... I know they do those things! And that they have to be brave and take risks when those circumstances occur. My Dad has been a fireman for almost twenty years. But it's also because of that, that I have never had any romanticized ideas of firemen. Dad has never played up what they do. Anyway, the rescue team have the radios that they can carry around. They were both young and were bored with the lack of activity so we ran errands most of the day. I kidd you not. We went to a kitchen-supply store, Belk, a grocery store, another station to see the new trucks, and two uniform stores (they bought me the t-shirt they wear to work!). It cracked me up. It was fun walking around stores with them. I was like, yeah, I'm with the firemen. I'm sorry if we smell like smoke or that our hands are dirty. We've had one busy day.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

In a world where you could fill in the blank as long as your voice was low enough

Don LaFontaine died September 3. And because I know many males who love to mimic these voices, here's a video.



And a comic strip to explain how females (some of the time, anyway) feel about it.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

I'm a Runnin'... from Chocolate and Cigarettes

A 12 year old Rufus Wainwright.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

1 of 37023 hits

Ten years ago today Google was born. It was probably a little rough at first. I'm sure there weren't as many hits, and that it didn't know everything it does now, and the logo probably didn't change with world events, national holidays, and weather updates. But... it was there. Larry Page and Serney Brin were only 27 and 26 years old. I bet they had no idea that they were dumbing down future generations. That Google, which comes from the word googol, which represent the numeral one followed by 100 zeros, would become a verb: past, present, and future. "I googled it," "I am googling it now," and "I will google it." That everyone, from the President to my little brother would use it when a particularly hard to find tidbit was needed. Scratch that. It doesn't have to be particularly hard. In fact, it's usually just curiousity. How do you spell definetly? Did you mean definitely? Why, yes. I did. Thank you, all-knowing Google. Type in the letters F and O and you can pick what it was exactly you were going to google: was it football? forever 21? fox news? or the food network? Well, I was looking for information about folic acid but Forever 21 has such cheap and cute clothing... thanks Google. My procrastinating self is happy.
Do you have any information on nephrolithiasis? 1-10 of 300,000. Good gosh. You need a life. Actually, you don't. You have too much of a life. No one should have 300,00 pieces of information on nephrolithiasis.

Happy birthday. Go define party. And no, I did not mean Lindsey Lohan.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Have at it

So, Michael Phelps has an amazing body. Duh. Which doesn't overshadow the fact that I found all of the attention he was getting in Beijing repulsive. And then, he wasn't even at the Closing Ceremony.... he was making his appearance in London, where he got a 9 jet flyover. Our soldiers, returning from Iraq don't even get that! The men and women who put there life on the line, who give up the possibility of a family, a career, of travel. They come home to their family. No band plays, no crowd cheers. And definitely no flyover. So, why does the swimmer? I know, I know. He trumped some amazing world records, he has worked beyond hard to get where he is, I'm proud that he is American, and so glad his mom made it to every race... but, gimme a break.

All of this to say, here's his diet. And a one day workout. No wonder he doesn't have a girlfriend.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

2nd gear impersonation

All I said was, "Why are your pants wet?"

video

Yes. There is always the chance that he could be the driver beside you. As your mom always says, "It's not your driving skills I'm worried about. It's everybody else's."

P.S. The room isn't as green as this video makes it look.

P.P.S. We aren't completely done with it anyway. That's why the walls are so bare.

P.P.S.S. Not like I care what you think about my room . Obviously. That's why I have taken the time to point out its flaws. Like girls who say, "I just didn't care what I looked like today. I just threw something on." Hello? I think you do care because you are pointing out how bad you look. If you really and truly didn't care... you wouldn't say anything.

Monday, August 25, 2008

They could be, Ryan. You never know

My Dad is cleaning out his desk and he found some of his journaling from 1995. He was quoting a conversation between Ryan (7) and Caleb (5).

Ryan - "I want a crewcut"
Caleb - "Is it dangerous?"
Ryan - "No!!"
Caleb - "Then I want one too."

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Yes, we know you don't know

This week started me back to UAB SON. Yee-haw howdy. Orientation week is always wonderful. And I say that with as much sarcasm as I possibly can. The schedule they set up for orientation week is never the same as the normal class schedule. Why? Why do they put themselves through the effort of coming up with another schedule that will only last one week? So, there we were, listening as they read the "Course Overview," the "Topical Outline," the "Dress Code," (!!! because after 2 semesters, they think we still need to be told to not show a bare midriff in our clinical setting???), and their office numbers. Thank you, dear teachers. You all obviously enjoyed your break because we have been given no information. At least, nothing new. Everything you just read came verbatum from the website. Meaning, we are perfectly capable of reading the freaking syllabus. So, since you don't have anything to show us, why don't you let us give you a quiz for a change. Calm down. It's only five questions. Which means if you miss more than one, you failed. Hakuna-matata.

1. Why are we, meaning the students, here?
a. Because you like making us waste our gas
b. You want us to know how unorganized you are
c. You feel more confident when the auditorium is full
d. Since tuition increased this year, you felt obligated to give us 3 days of nothing

2. Because this is an internet-based course, why don't you know how to work a computer?
a. Because the Dean never taught you how
b. Because your mom never taught you how
c. It's complicated
d. You DO know how to work a computer... but thought it would be funny to pretend like you don't

3. Why is it that what YOU are showing us online, is not there when WE log on?
a. There was an "internet crisis." Again.
b. Because you haven't put it on our page yet. And you are sorry for the inconvenience.
c. Because our dogs ate our computers.
d. Because we are morons. All 196 of us.

4. Why do you not have our clinical schedule figured out yet?
a. You feel powerful making us wait
b. You don't care that many of us have bosses who need a work schedule ASAP.
c. All eight teachers haven't figured one out
d. You are not in a position to disclose that information

5. Why doesn't the microphone work?
a. It does, you just insist on wearing loud clunky necklaces that scrape all over it.
b. It does, you just couldn't find the power switch.
c. When you were little you paced the shores with your mouth full of pebbles and talked over the waves, just like Demosthenes. Thus, you don't need a microphone. At least, you think you don't.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Oh. My. Word.

The swatch read Coconut Grove.

I call it Purple Tree Bark.

Benjamin Moore is a liar.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

My Tide-to-Go pen!

The room is done. Thanks to Mom, Aunt Ronda, Anna, and yours truly. I love it. Actually it isn't quite done done done. Tomorrow we head to the great metropolis of Birmingham to find a new covering for the loveseat, a corner shelf, stuff for our beautifully empty, green walls, picture frames, and a mirror. This excites me.
While I was in the process of lugging all of my stuff back into my closet (I have way too many purses, by the way. And shoes. Which reminds me... I just bought a pair of purple flats!) I decided to clean out said purses. Because, whenever I switch, it is a very hasty grab-stuff-and-run process. Meaning some items never get taken out of the bowels of the Fossil canvas, the Target hobo, or the cheap red leather. Did I say some items? Following is a list (because I love lists) of the hibernating purse dwellers. Yes, I was lame enough to take an inventory.

Ahem.

8 feminine products (just thought I would get the awkward one out of the way)
4 pencils
1 orange highlighter
11 pens (3 with completely chewed-up bottoms)
25 gum/peppermint wrappers
1 unopened peppermint
2 Kleenex - wrinkled, but very very clean
A bead with the letter 'N' on it (?)
A Lion King Broadway ticket from 10-06-05:Section CA, Aisle 3X, Row DD, Seat 27
6 lip products
6 orange and blue pom-pom ribbons from an Iron Bowl evening with Erin in '06
2 eyeliner pencils
2 tiny bottles of lotion
My Tide-to-Go pen
1 very bad fingernail file
This one confused me : A pair of knee high pantyhose. I have never worn knee-high panty hose in my life. Why are they in a purse that belongs to me?
1 very special letter
2 brushes
1 library book list
A bracelet and a necklace
3 working batteries (JACKPOT!)
2 hair rubberbands, one of which was broken
2 sets of directions to I have no idea where
1 teeny tiny tupperware container
7 bobby pins
2 prayer lists from church
My good pair of fingernail clippers
2 of Alisa's wedding registry lists
A fellow student's list of complains regarding Pathophysiology
1 unopened Bandaid
Disposable chopsticks (never used!)
1 headband
A receipt from a locksmith
$2.49
A child's picture drawn with blue crayon. I cannot figure out if they are astronauts, aliens, or a couple of octopus (octopuses? octopi?)
An otoscope cover
1 rubber tourniquet

It was kind of like Christmas. Kind of.




Okay. I lied. It was nothing like Christmas.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Can anyone say muscles?

Can I just say I love the Olympics? Because I do. Especially... especially!! the summer Olympics. They are incredible. These people's bodies amaze me. No, I'm not drooling. The women are just as impressive as the men. I didn't even know we had muscles there! No wonder the Greeks did it naked. But, I don't want to do it like the Greeks. Blech.
My family was all in the living room when the USA men's swim team competed in the 400 meter freestyle relay. It was great! The French had talked trash (but, hey, they're the French, what do you expect?), saying they were looking forward to "smashing" team USA. We were neck and neck the whole race. Our third man got a little behind, and our team captain had to make up lost time. With probably 25 feet left to go, Jason Lesaz caught up with the Frenchmen Bernard, and with a final surge... he touched the wall, 0.08 seconds ahead of his rival!! We were screaming in our living room! Probably the best moment of the whole 2 weeks. Ah. I love it.

And just so you know, my bedroom, after a decade of being gray, is receiving a makeover. Benjamin Moore calls it grasslands. I call it just right.
And yes, I am enjoying my break.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Do Not Press

I really really hope you have some time on your hands. Because I am about to provide you with a website that could waste it. If you do (obviously you do, or you wouldn't be reading my blog) then have at it. But, if you don't (don't have what? Time! Remember? Stay with me here), you must use self-control. It's one of the Fruits of the Spirit. It's a good thing to have. That is why I am providing you with an opportunity to practice it.

I leave it in your hands: To click or not to click, that is the question

It's hard isn't it? Look, I'll help you. Look at the top right of your screen... see the little box with the 'x'? Click that and leave. Don't look back. And you'll survive. You'll never wonder "What was that link?" "Did I miss out on a laugh? A tear?" "Why the heck did Amy put that up there?" "Why am I letting this drive me crazy?"

Enjoy.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Mommy said don't talk to strangers... so I never have.

Most of you know I was homeschooled, right? I mean, all my life. I have never set foot in a public school. Well, once my brothers played a basketball game in one and I did go then... but, regardless. But, it isn't something I bring up. It is NOT that I am ashamed of it. Not at all. It's just, I don't know, I don't talk about it.
I've been in clinicals with Jackie all year. Our homework is done together, we are always calling, checking, and sitting together. But, somehow, I had never mentioned homeschooling around her. Until today. Her eyes almost popped out of her head. She couldn't believe. "You're homeschooled! Oh my gosh! But... but... you're... you're...." Megan grinned, "She's cool. She's fine." Jackie just kept sputtering, "But you're so... socialized! Most homeschoolers aren't! What did your parents do to teach you how to interact?"
I wonder how many homeschoolers she knows? Because I know a lot. A lot. And maybe 10 of them are rather awkward around people. I also know a lot of public schoolers. And more than 10 of them are awkward around people.

First off, allow me to say that I have never been offended by these comments. Ever. In fact, they crack me up. I just laugh at their bewilderment. Because I just blew their expectations about what a homeschooled kid looks like to Jupiter. People's assumptions of homeschoolers are crazy. The media doesn't help. If a homeschooled family gets in the news they are all, 1) Dressed like dorks, 2) Have a billion kids, 3) are Freakishly smart, and 4) are Crazy (remember the woman who drowned all of her kids in the tub?). And for the record, six children do not equal a billion children. I have even been doubted. "You're homeschooled?" "Yes." "No, you're not. " "Yes, I am." "You cannot be homeschooled." "Well, I am. So, let's end this pointless argument."

It's the social interaction question that kills. I need to write a paper on this. Just so I can have an answer. Where did I learn to talk to people? I don't know! It's not like Mom and Dad sat us down and said, "Now children, today you are going to learn to talk to people." It just... happened. Is that so hard to believe? Why do people assume that, unless you are in a classroom for 12 years with people JUST your age.... you'll never learn to communicate effectively? How did I learn? Well, when I was 7-8 months old I said da-da and moma.... and I haven't shut up since. Where did I learn? .... Wal-Mart? Slumber parties? Piano lessons? Family reunions? I don't know! Are you saying you learned how to talk in school? Social interaction was around loooong before public education showed its face, buddy.
Crazy. Crazy crazy crazy.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Procrastination

If I wasn't in school and money wasn't an issue (ha!) I would:

1. Go snorkeling
2. Give my bedroom a complete makeover THIS WEEK
3. Hire a personal trainer
4. Turn our basement into a family room and install a home theater
5. Buy a Great Dane... he would be black and white and I would call him Darien
6. Go to the library and check out...oh.... 12 books that have absolutely nothing to do with the human body
7. Go swimming
8. Go tubing
9. Get Ryan to teach me how to slalom
10. Take guitar lessons
11. Get my boating license
12. Buy shoes

.... I hate this textbook.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Immune System.... you're fired.

Well... I fought off mucus for 2 weeks (yes, another blog about mucus). I finally went to the doctor, got a shot and a Z-pack. Ha ha! Take that you little snot workers! This morning, I woke up and laid very very still for a moment. Something was not right. Breathe slowly. And launch! Oh, toilet bowl... you're the only one who understands me. I was afraid that my socks would come out of my mouth! As I was hurling out last night's meal, Anna came up behind me and asked me if I was throwing up. Um... no? I just wanted to see how far I could stick my face in the commode. But she pulled my hair back and got me a wet washcloth for my face. The worst thing about throwing up is the aftertaste. And the burn in your esophagus from hydrachloric acid. So,
I have been in bed all day. Which part of me needed. But I had so much school I needed to get done. And I did get some done... just not enough. But I slept for over half of the day. Yay. And everybody has been bringing me Sprite and crackers. And Mom and Ryan have both knocked over my Sprite. And Emily and Graham stopped by to see me, because they're sweet that way. And here I am, at 10:10, wondering how the heck I'm going to be able to sleep.
Sigh. Good night. Sweet dreams.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Wanna ride it again?

Friday morning me and 15 other kids loaded into two suburbans and headed to Six Flags. I haven't been in several years. And even though my voice was gone, I had a blast. Good group of people. We were on the road by 6:36 and drove for 2 hours without stopping (considering 11 of the 16 were girls, this is truly worth noting). We pulled into the park and our wonderful driver missed the parking lot turn and went back out onto the interstate. That's okay, we didn't want to park yet anyway. Okay... here we go.
Georgia Cyclone. Scorcher. Mind-Bender. Batman. Ninja (I think I have new earring holes in my neck from that one). Acrophobia (the extreme stop at the bottom made all the snot come hurtling out of my sinuses). Superman. Great American Scream Machine. And... The Goliath.
If you haven't ridden the Goliath, you need to. Yes, need. And wait the extra 10-15 minutes for the front row. It is worth it. It takes you 200 feet in the air and then hurls straight down at 70 mph. Hands up hands up! Feet up! Don't think about the fact that you only have a saddle-sized piece of plastic over your lap and no belt or shoulder grips. Physics is the only thing keeping you in your seat anyway. And the chances of you dying were higher on the drive down here than on the actual ride. We rode it it three times. Hands up hands up! Smile for the camera! But don't pay $19.99 for the photo. I mean, it's funny to look at, but not that funny. And thanks to Emily Kitchens friendliness to a Six Flags worker... the third time we got to come up the Fast Pass lane (you get to skip the whole line and go straight to the seat lanes) without a Fast Pass. BUT... when we were standing in line for one ride, a tv was listing off the top 10 roller coasters in the US and in New Jersey there is a ride called the Kingda Ka. This thing goes 456 feet in the air and goes 128 mph! I am going to New Jersey. And I am riding the front row. With my hands up hands up.
Gosh, it was fun. We made it home by 10:30. And then I had to get up the next morning and go to a New Parent Labor/Birthing Experiene class at St. Vincent's. No, not for me. For school.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

A voice from heaven would be nice

I know He knows the plans He has for me. They are plans of welfare and not of calamity. Plans to give me a future and a hope. I just wish I had some idea as to why He chooses the paths for me that He does.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Yes, how much are your germ shields?

We are skipping Sunday school. I feel rather heathenish. But remember the singing school? Yeah, well, somebody brought the black plague. Ring around the rosies... we all fell down. I mean, I think 80% of that camp went home with something. Strep, pink eye, and crud. And the Porters' immune systems were obviously not prepared. Way to go immune systems. On Monday everybody, except Anna, was hacking up a lung... and the wonderful green stuff that your body is so good at manufactoring. Oh! Graham wrote a blog on snot (because he went to singing school, too). You should read it. By Wednesday everybody is feeling better. And Asa comes upstairs with red eyes -thus the ear drops story. And I have a very bad feeling about this. Because if something messes with one of us, it messes with all of us. Caleb and Anna are currently pink-eyed. Anna is touching her face and then touching public surfaces faster than I can clean them. And I have four days from Hades ahead of me. So, while the little mucus factory workers in my body are still working overtime, I'm doing just fine.
Wonderful. Anna is playing the piano.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

To give what we cannot keep, to gain what we cannot lose

I know you think he's a fool. But Gomer thought the same thing about Hosea. And even more appropriate: that's what the world thought of Jesus.

We in our foolishness thought we were wise; He played the fool and He opened our eyes.
We in our weakness believed we were strong; He became helpless to show we were wrong.
So we follow God's own fool; but only the foolish can tell!
Believe the unbelievable, and come be a fool as well.

Monday, June 30, 2008

optic and otic

My Mom just put ear drops in my brother's eye. He's fine. It was hilarious.

Mom - "Asa, hold still."
Asa - "It's burning. It's burning a lot!"
Mom - "I know. It's okay."
Asa - "Mom.. it really really hurts!"
Mom - "... OH MY GOSH! THIS ISN'T THE RIGHT STUFF!"
Asa - "WHAT?!"
Mom - "GO RINSE YOUR EYE OUT!"

My mom is incredible. I know I will never be able to show the Supermom skills she displays. But everynow and then, I get a glimpse of what she might have struggled with in Mother School.

and this was only 2 days

Sooo.... it's been over a week since my last post. I'm sorry.

Right now, I am sitting on my best friend's bed, in an empty house, full of snot, drinking hot tea, studying informatics, with a mound of tissues beside me. Well, actually, right NOW I'm blogging, but I was studying.

I was at singing school from Wednesday night through Saturday morning. Because most of you out there don't know what I'm talking about, allow me to explain.
Singing school is a mainly Primitive Baptist thing. But the Porters have only in the past few years become friends with a rather large group of them. Thus, we go to singing school. Think do re mi fa sol la ti do. Think shaped notes. And now imagine the leader calling out a hymn number, singing a pitch, and a group of about 200 people finding their notes (sopranos through basses). And bam. They sing. They sing beautiful four part harmony without instruments. It is a joy to hear. The ear for music these kids have developed blows my mind. Many of them play instruments... without ever having taken a single lesson. They just listen to the song, sit down, and start playing. And at singing school they teach you how. No, not the instrument part, the singing part. Granted, most of these people have been doing this for most of their lives every Sunday at church.... so I will never catch up. But, it is still incredible. Many many songs are sung, games are played, meals are served, dorms have cleaning crews that consist of kids, the dress code is strictly obeyed, adults are respected, and God is glorified. Very fun. Very hard to come back to school, gas prices, and snot.

Some specific highlights in no particular order:
1. Giggling with Emily one night... even though we were supposed to be quiet
2. Sitting in between two very low (and good looking) basses while singing hymns I had no clue how to sing
3. Playing volleyball till 1:30 AM Friday night
4. Listening to Graham and Caleb's "impressions"
5. Talking to Emily K., glad that I wasn't the only one getting irritated about some things (she's the preacher's daughter... if she gets mad, that makes it okay, right?)
6. Being shown new swing dancing moves... but I didn't learn them very well. I need more lessons.
7. I learned guillotine is NOT GILL-uh-teen, but GEE-uh-teen. As in "gee" in geek. So sue me.
8. Being quizzed on the differences between Presbyterians and Primitive Baptists
9. Logan's list on the things that define this decade... and the mental image of the clothing styles we may wear when we are old
10. A disgusting paramedic story
11. My hair Friday night, thanks to Whitney (yes, I'm vain enough to say that)
12. Sitting in the suitcase section of Graham's 4- Runner, in heels and a white dress. Never ever tell a boy that you will be fine for a 2 minute ride. He will make it his personal goal to make sure you at least clutch the seat in front of you for dear life
13. Friday night's performance. For several reasons.
14. A little girl telling me that the big question for the younger female crowd was "Who does Asa Porter like?" and watching my little brother and realizing he was (thank God) completely oblivious to his popularity.
15. Eleanor's dimples
16. Chelsea asking me if I liked younger men (regarding her brother). Ha.
17. Getting to know Lydia
18. Ryan calling me Wednesday and saying he missed me
19. Whitney... put your shirt on
20. A vest

Gosh. If I had been there a whole week you would be reading my list until Christmas.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

this will have to do

Okay, I was studying (no, duh... i've been studying all day long) and I went upstairs to take a break and I reached the top of the stairs and glanced at the tv. Because the rest or my family has what is know as leisure time, they were all watching The Untouchables. I have never seen it. But I came up just in time to see Sean Connery shout 'dago bastard' and then get mowed down by a machine gun. Wow. What a great mind relaxing image. And for those of you who have never seen it.... I'm sorry, but Sean Connery dies. It was gruesome.

And altruistic means having pure motives. Try to use it in a sentence. It's hard.

HEY!!! it's my 50th post! Celebrex!!

.... I mean, Celebrate. Stupid pharmacology.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Three unabridged moments

While driving to church:

Dad- Hey, ya'll sing that rooster song.
Everybody - Rooster song?.... rooster?
Dad - Yeah... you know, the rooster and the farm.
Ryan - The Fox Went Out on a Chilly Night?
Dad - Yes! That's a good one.

I fed a 12-hour-old baby today. She fit snugly from my elbow to the tips of my fingers. She was a perfect little black baby. She was so bundled up, it made me uncomfortable. But her wonderfully complete, tiny little hand, wormed its way out of the blanket and and grabbed my finger from the bottle.

I was told that technically I didn't have a third "moment" so...

Caleb graduated from high school a few weeks ago. I don't know if you remember the influx of money that surges via the mailbox after graduation, but I sure as heck do. Anyway, Caleb, being the organized maniac that he is, is staying as on top of his thank-you notes as he can. Last night, before i went to bed, I glanced at him at his desk. His hair looked like Wolfman and I'm pretty sure his pupils were dilated. I asked him what was wrong. "I am so sick of the word 'thanks' and 'appreciate,' " he said. "How many have you written?" I asked. "Sixty-three."

Also... to all my silent readers out there (coughDadTiffanyAngelaPritchettsBlevinsEmilyJimTiffanycough)... I love getting comments. Just click anonymous and type your name. Pretty please.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

I can totally concentrate... on myself.

Thomas Boston - Human Nature in its Fourfold State

"When God is speaking to men by His word, or they are speaking to Him in prayer, does not the mind often leave them before the Lord, like so many 'idols that have eyes, but see not, and ears, but hear not.' The carcass is laid down before God, but the world gets away the heart. Though the eyes be closed, the man sees a thousand vanities; the mind, in the mean time, is like a bird got loose out of a cage, skipping from bush to bush, so that, in effect, the man never comes to himself till he is gone from the presence of the Lord. Say not, it is impossible to get the mind fixed - it is hard, indeed, but not impossible; grace from the Lord can do it (Psalms 108:1), agreeable objects will do it. A pleasant speculation will arrest the minds of the inquisitive; the worldly man's mind is in little hazard of wandering, when he is contriving his business, casting up his accounts, or counting his money; if he answer you not at first, he tells you he did not hear you, he was busy, his mind was fixed. Were we admitted into the presence of a king to petition for our lives, we should be in no hazard of gazing through the chamber of presence. But here in lies the case; the carnal mind, employed about any spritual good, is out of its element, and therefore cannot fix."

This hit home. Whenever I pray or read I am constantly 'loose in a cage.' I will be in the middle of talking to my Father in Heaven and a rabbit will pop up and I will gleefully chase it. Far far away from my Lord. Well done, Satan. My time with Him is often choppy... full of my plans for the day, my hopes for the future, regrets from the past. My mind will not fix. And yet, as Mr. Boston said, my mind is capable of fixing. Ask any of my family: if you approach me and I am reading a good book, it will take several AMY!!'s to get my mind out of those pages. Why can't I be that resolute in my time with Him? Yes, it is hard to force your mind to stay in one channel, to not surface for air, to keep moving forward. But, is He not worth it?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Miracle of miracles

Well. It happened. I saw a baby be born. Today. It was the most disgusting, most fantastic miracle I have ever seen.
I was assigned my patient at 7:30 am. We leave at 2:00. At 11:00 I was told I probably wouldn't get to see the delivery. Dang it.
At 12:45 she was dilated 10 cm (this is called complete... you figure out why). For the next 3 hours, I coached her through her contractions. Three hours. With a contraction every 1-2 minutes lasting anywhere from 40-80 seconds. At 2:00 my instructor came in and I must have given her Bambi eyes or something because she said, "You want to stay, don't you?" I was like, "I've been here all day! I really don't want to leave right before the baby comes!" And she goes, "Good. Well, I'll be here somewhere. Here's my cell phone number. Call me when you're done." Su-weet.
Another hour and a half of pushing. It reminds me of that Calvin and Hobbes quote. Calvin just broke something and Hobbes asks him if he's going to tell his mom. Calvin is like, "Are you kidding? It's times like these when all she can remember is how long she was in labor with me." She has every right to remember, Calvin. I was exausted just watching this girl push.
Anyway, at 1530, the senior resident came in and got gowned, booted, and masked and got these. Well, okay. Not exactly like this pair, but very very similiar. They were shoved in and locked onto the head and that baby was pulled (NOT gently) from the birth canal. Aw. A little baby, fresh from it's mother's womb, right? The typical picture comes to mind. No. No no no no no. This child was bloody, purplish white, cone-headed, with cheesy gunk in between his toes, fingers, and in his armpits. He was slung to the warming oven, vigorously wiped down, and suctioned. As he lay there, color started spreading over his body. His toes and fingers curled around the hands touching him. He informed the world that, not only did he have working lungs, but he was not happy with his treatment. The mother began to ask, "Where is he?" The little man was wrapped up, and the nurse walked him over to her. And I thought of the verse in John: "Whenever a woman is in labor she has pain, because her hour has come; but when she gives birth to the child, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy that a child has been born into the world. Therefore you too have grief now; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you."

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Bouquet of grenades

Worked in the garden all morning. And planted the flower bed. Anna was describing the flowers that were in her piano teacher's son's wedding (stay with me here) and she said, "You know... dandelions?"
me -"Anna, dandelions are weeds. I don't think anyone would put them in a wedding bouquet."
Anna- "No! Not dandelions... they just looked like them!"
Asa - "Are those the flowers that look like bombs?"
me - "Bombs? A flower that looks like a bomb?"
Asa - "Yeah. Bombs."

Oh, little brother. One day, there will be something that cannot be related to a weapon, and then what will you do?

Sunday, June 8, 2008

The End

Yeah… attitudes are getting kind of stinky here at the end of the third day. And Dad passed his cold along to 3 of us. I despise sore throats. I can be so cranky: don’t talk to me, don’t try to make me laugh, I don’t even want to smile. But… all in all still a good trip.

The five kids went to the public pool today. I forgot how much I hate them: no stunts off the diving board, jump, surface and swim for the ladder (no playing around the board), no running, no horseplay in the water, no treading water, no holding your nose, no towels allowed… okay, I made the last three up, but, what the heck? Yee-haw howdy, here we are, standing in the pool. Don’t move or they’ll blow their whistles. After about an hour we were ready to head back to the lake where the only rule was “Don’t jump off the bridge.” I think I can handle that.

Dad and I left to find somewhere with internet service so I could download homework from UAB. We stopped in a little place called Lynchburg and the welcome center had wireless. Which is how the 2 previous blogs were posted. I was the only one in the room (except for the very cordial and quiet receptionist), the room was still and cool, and the leather couch was navy blue. It was perfect for studying… until 6 very large and in charge women, with their 3 small girls, entered. They had come from a softball tournament and were decked out appropriately, with sleeveless jerseys, baggy shorts and bleached/frizzy hair. They formed a long and loud line to both bathrooms as there were no men. I was trying to concentrate… because by this time I was on facebook and it requires a lot of attention. At least it was particularly absorbing at the moment. One woman began to show her friends how her little two year old could sing a country song. I didn’t recognize it but it had something to do with being a tough girl and what she’s going to do to her cheating man. I tried not to look prim and horrified. Close the laptop. Thank you, polite receptionist. Peace out, Lynchburg welcome center.

Got back to camp and we walked to the marina for a wonderfully massive ice cream cone. Yes, I have a cold. And yes, I know I just helped out the enemy troops in my body. But it was good.

Dad took Mom kayaking and we were playing in the road- cause that’s where all the cars are - when the young man who worked the front desk drove up. Single young man. He stopped, smiled and conversed. And conversed some more. With skillful manipulation of the conversation he learned our names, where we were from, learned I was the oldest, informed us of all his previous work experience, learned our ages… made sure we knew that he would be there in the morning when we checked out, told us about the star-gazing event tonight, and said if we were interested in getting a job at a camp that he would take our email addresses and send us info. Sir, I just got out of the shower, my hair is damp and curling in every direction except down, I have on a t-shirt and gym shorts, I’m barefoot… and you are obviously interested. A job that lonely isn’t very attractive to me. Oh, and are we coming back this summer? Oh… too bad. When he got back in his cart and drove off, Ryan looked at me and said, “It’s a good thing you’re here, or we would’ve never learned all that.” I said, “Yeah, well, you also would have got to play the last 30 minutes of daylight. It’s too dark to see, now.”
I want to write more, but I am exhausted. Good night.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Day 2's story.... still at the welcome center.

Current tick count:

Ryan – 3
Asa – 4
Caleb – 4
Amy – 2 (I’m such a slacker)
Anna – 3

But, to quote Asa, “I haven’t really been checking.” The ones counted were the ones crawling in plain view. But extra care is being taken in the shower… because there’s lots of places that are hard to reach. Sorry. Brad Paisley surfaced. I try to keep him submerged as much as I can. At least it wasn’t Toby Keith; I cannot stand that guy, but I seem to always sing him around one particular friend.
Today, we all went to Wal-Mart with the now-very-long list. The whole family went. We split in 3 different directions. Yet, because opinions are needed, someone would always come in search of someone else. Ryan bought a batman mask. He walked around the store and the campground with it on. He’s pretty good at the whole “I’m Batman” voice. When he told Mom, she just said “Well, I’m Batman’s mother.” One day…one day…. even though I used to hate it, I will look at my many children and say, “Because I’m the mother, THAT’S WHY.” And it will be amazing.

I will say this for Tennessee people: maybe it’s just a change of view but they seem to know how to work the land. It seems like Alabama is full of pastures with nothing in them except dried up ponds and cow patties. Ignored cultivation. The ground here is alive and working: wheat, corn, orchards, goats, horses, and cows. Don’t get me wrong, I love untouched nature. More than split- rail fences and autumn bouquets. But if God has given you land, use it in a way that would glorify Him! Don’t let it just sit there and waste away. I saw a massive Weeping Willow today. It was taller than the 2-story house it shaded. I glimpsed several tree-lined driveways, something I would love to have at my home one day: a driveway lined with Bradford pears. I would say oak trees, but I am a selfish person and I know that I would never get to see the full effect of an oak- lined drive.

Very hot again. I think the high was 96. I love camping but I realized today that we always always always go in April or October. No wonder.

The welcome center at Lynchburg, TN is cute... and has wireless

I am camping right now. And we don’t have internet (duh) so I am using Microsoft word to help me journal these few days. Thus, there will be a multitude of blogs posted all at once. Hoorah!
This is the first trip without Alisa. It’s kind of weird. And because we haven’t had a camper in a few years, we are all a little out of experience regarding camping. For instance, tomorrow, we will head into town with the grocery list we accumulated today. Things like more bread, more lettuce and tomatoes, more milk, bug spray, s’mores material (talk about traumatizing: camping without s’mores!), citronella candle (or salmonella, as I called them earlier)… and so on and so forth.

Despite the fact that it was probably 95 degrees today we actually had fun with each other. Because we are so extraverted, sometimes I wonder if we can hang out with just each other. And there were no Primitive Baptists with us. Could we make it alone? This afternoon went well…. the lake is 200 feet from our site and we just ran down, climbed a tree, and jumped in. We probably swam for an hour and a half. It amazes me that we get along so well. We are all so different, each one of us playing our own song, dancing our own dance, and singing our own words. Yet, somehow, when all together, a beautiful harmony sounds. Our senses of humor seem to bounce off one another’s. We dunked and screamed and splashed and cannonballed to our heart’s content. My brothers make my heart hurt with love. I am still aggravated daily. My hair is pulled, my ribs are tickled, my belongings disappear… but strange males get bristly looks if caught looking at me, I am told I look beautiful, my advice is asked, my conversation is sought. As the men they are becoming emerge from the quickly fading little boys, I am almost caught off guard. I don’t remember growing older! When did they? Don’t get me wrong… sometimes I could kick them in the teeth. Last Saturday, for instance. I made Caleb mad and vice versa and we resorted to name calling and hurling cracker packages at each other’s heads. I thought it was handled very well.

So… all of this to say, we are alive. We love each other. Tomorrow we will get up and have to think of something to do that involves just us. And it will be fun. I’m not guaranteeing this attitude will still be here by Sunday, but, for now…. there is peace.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

By the lion's mane

I cannot sleep. So I will tell you something....... i am over him. Ssshhh. For real.

Moving on: I visited Alisa and Jeff's new house yesterday. I love it. It has so much character. The floor has as many waves as a red-flag beach day. If you sit down next to someone on the couch, you find yourself leaning towards them. "I swear! It's the room! I am not trying to make out with you!" The living room has a huge built in book case that is already full and a window seat with amazing storage underneath it. And my second favorite thing about it is a smalll stained glass window in the dining/living room. There is nothing large or ornate about it. I think it is brown and yellow, with maybe some blue and red. The pattern is confusing and it's too close to the ceiling. It's just stuck there. It's fantastic.

BUT BEST OF ALL!! The bathroom door handle. I'm dead serious. The door knob is brass and is encased in a 9-inch plate with brass flowers and DRAGONS. Dragons? Seriously? Could a bathroom door handle get any better? Oh, but it can! Step off the wood, onto the tile, and close the door and you will see what watches over the throne room.

A lion. I kid you not. A brass lion's head with a ring in his mouth juts out over an old keyhole. These things are in so many movies but I have never seen one on a normal house, least of all in a bathroom. Personally, it seems kind of backwards... I think the knocker should go on the outside of the door, but, I'm not complaining. Who would complain when Aslan watches you brush your teeth?

Monday, June 2, 2008

Kotex life

Today I pulled in Wal-Mart (because where i live that seems to be all that everyone does) and I nearly had a heart attack. Today is the second of the month. What was I thinking? I don't know what it's like where you live, but around here people come out of the woodworks at the beginning of the month. I have never considered myself a snob. Except during the first of the month. And suddenly I am a high class, heel -popping aristocrat.
Dirty, bare footed children with suckers in their mouths... obviously straight from the bank teller, most of them crying or whining. Their mothers are aged beyond their years, and if they aren't morbidly obese, they are lean and stringy. Their eyes are dull and listless or snapping with impatience and anger at their ward. They bestow useless threats on the little ones: "I'm going to slap you," "I am going to count to 3 and if you don't come I'm going to leave you here." Seriously? Why don't you just count to 1,000,000 because that child is never going to come. They have heard that way too many times.
I have to keep dodging those stupid motor scooters, because these people don't want to walk on their own. They tell the pharmacist they can't pay the full amount for the medicine while a Budweiser and Camel box stare out of the buggy (yes, it is called a buggy here. Get over it.). And if one more overweight, tattooed man slides his eyes down me, I may castrate him. With my purse. How dare you look at me like I'm here to give you a personal show. I mean, I'm obviously not looking at you. Just keep walking, Amy... and for once, all girlish shopping tendencies leave me and I am a man. I walk in, I get my 3 items and I leave. I spent 7 dollars and 10 minutes.

But as I'm leaving and walking to my car, it hits me. These are the "least of these." I think about prostitutes and tax collectors and Romans in Jesus's day and how good He was to love them. "I would treat a prostitute with love" I tell myself. I would be right there with Jesus loving everybody. I mean, I'm soo good at loving. Just ask my friends.
And suddenly, I am a filthy rag. Do you know what a filthy rag was in the Bible? Think of that special time of the month, ladies, and what it looks like. That is a filthy rag. And that's what my righteous deeds look like to God. I don't even want to know what He sees when I'm being a smart-ass uptown girl.
I am so glad God didn't ask us to bridge the gap. Because I cannot even walk through Wal-Mart without condemning myself to Sheol.

Saturday, May 24, 2008

I love this boy

When Ryan answers the phone:

First ring-
Strange man- "Is this the vetinarian hospital?"
Ryan- "No sir, it is not. I'm afraid you have the wrong number."

Second ring, 2 minutes later-
Same strange man- "Is this the vetinarian hospital?"
Ryan- "No sir. You're calling the wrong number."

3rd ring, 1 minute later-
Same freaking strange man- "Is this the vetinarian hospital?"
Ryan- "Yes sir, it is."
S.F.S.M. -"Well finally! I've called this number 3 times, and it kept being the wrong number." (!!!)
Ryan- "Well, this time it's the right number. I'm glad you kept calling it."
S.F.S.M.- "I need to bring my dog in. Can I make an appointment or something?"
Ryan- "Oh you don't have to do that. We're having a slow day. Just bring him on in."
S.F.S.M.- "Really? Well, alright."
Ryan- "But don't take too long. We close in about 30 minutes." (It was 9 AM)
S.F.S.M.- "Oh! I will be there in just few minutes! Thanks!"
Ryan- "You are very welcome."

I thought I would pee in my pants, I laughed so hard.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Do you have any super glue? I'm sliding.

Today, I got to do something I have always wanted to do. I rode a motorcycle. Seriously. Jim was in town for the wedding and he brought his "crotch rocket" (sorry Amanda Hannah). So after school today I drove to his grandmother's house and he took me out. Oh my gosh. We walked out to it and he pulled out these little metal spikes for my feet and handed me a helmet. My seat was probably 8 inches wide and maybe 16 inches long. I hiked myself up to my perch and looked around. Handles? Seat belt? Rope? Anything? "Oh, you just hold onto me," he said. Holy crap. What if you have a sunstroke?! What do I hold onto then? But, I didn't say this. I am practicing submitting. And submitting sucks. I climbed up to my seat.



Yes, my seat is that strip of metal hovering over the back wheel. But I got up on it. And prayed. He looked back at me before flipping down his visor and said, "You've never ridden, right? Just lean with me on the curves. Don't lean the opposite way. That will mess me up." Mess you up? Which means it will also mess me up, right? I really like my epidermis. I hoped that keeping it was on God's agenda.
And away we went. I leaned. And bit my lip. And gripped the gum size foot rests with my toes, Jim with my knees, and ignored my screaming quadripceps. When he would shift gears, I was worried I was going to slide down and take him out. Lean right. Lean left. Don't look at the speedometer. It was a long 15 minutes. But, I am not a pansy. I wouldn't ever tell him to stop. But as the ride continued, it got easier. My legs relaxed and only tensed when I needed them to. I figured out how to use my human handle (hand on the stomach, one on the back ... I felt like I was administering some weird form of CPR). I didn't want to stop. Once the adrenaline starts rushing and the wind is whipping your t-shirt around it is an amazing experiece. I refused to think about my Dad's horror stories ( he told them to me 15 minutes before I got to the house). You enjoy the ride so much more when you're exposed like that. In my car, I have my radio, my cellphone, or people. Our conversation was limited to our briefs stops, and, of course, cellphones wouldn't fit into the helmet. And Jim is amazing at figuring out where the heck we are... because Brushy Creek people don't believe in road signs.
After 2 hours of Smith Lake highways, I guess asking for more would have been a little demanding. And I had to get back to my online course anyway. Stink. I think I want a motorcycle.
No... never mind. I just want to ride. I had a blast! Thanks so much, Jim! Whenever you need a riding buddy, just let me know.

Friday, May 16, 2008

For Her

What is it like to know that tomorrow you will be getting married? How does it feel to kiss your parents good-night one last time? You look so calm. How can you be?! It's midnight and you're writing thank you notes! I'm blogging. We should go to sleep. Tomorrow is a big day.
But, I don't want to. I want to watch you for a little longer. Tomorrow night, dear heart of my hearts, you will not be sleeping alone. Are you freaking out? No? Well, I am adequately freaked out for you and me combined. You looked beautiful tonight, even though you did sit in something. Sweet sister, I love you. Whenever Jeff has to go out of town, will you come sleep on my trundle?
Good. You're going to bed. No ceremony, you say. Just good night. You cannot cry. But you cannot sleep either. You're just lying there, twisting your hair, staring at the ceiling. But I will cry. Seriously, I never knew how weepy this girl could be. I would have made it without crying tonight when I was making my "speech" except I looked at Dad and saw that walrus mustache quivering. Then Pepaw wiped his eyes. And my cup ran over.
So, here's to you and the glorious years ahead of you. Because I can't be eloquent right now.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

i'm right here. And i'm about to get ear plugs.

I want to post something, but I can't hear myself think because you're talking too loud.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

May the script be with you

I'm watching Return of the Jedi. The old ones are amazing. Because George Lucas actually paid someone to write good dialogue, instead of depending on his mind-mystifying computer animated special effects.

"What did he say? R2! You're playing the wrong message!"

"The Great Jabba the Hutt says you are to be terminated. Immediately."
"Good. I hate long waits."

"There's nothing to see. I used to live here you know."
"You're going to die here you know. Convenient."

"A Jedi Knight?! Geez. I'm out of it for a little while and everyone has delusions of grandeur."

Basically, I just love Han Solo.

panic

Three times in the past week I have hurled myself from the bed into the shower. I don't know how I do it because the shower is through a door and around the corner. I should probably call an Olympian official to watch this feat. I didn't oversleep once all last semester and 3 times in the last 7 days I have. Once I accidently set the alarm for 4:50 PM instead of AM. Brilliant. Another time I accidently hit the "off" button instead of the snooze. And the third time I was staying with a friend and was planning on getting up when she did. But she overslept. So, we were both catapulted off of the mattress...towards suitcases and the bathroom. I would love to see the activity on a brain monitor when the lateness of the clock registers in my gray matter. I sit up and I know that something is not right. Like a friend said at school when he overslept for clinicals, "It's light outside. It shouldn't be light outside." I glance at the clock and 6:01 blinks back sleepily. Double take. Triple take. Wait 2 seconds for the adrenaline to be adequately pumped to all launching muscles... and SHOOM! into the shower. Cold cold cold! Too hot! Too hot! Soap in the eyes. No time to shave. No time to condition. Get out out out!! Can't dry hair! Can't make bed! Put on makeup! Breathe. And vow never to do this again.

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

To be a woman

"It's a strange thing, but somehow we expect more of girls than of boys. It is the sisters and wives and mothers, you know, Caddie, who keep the world sweet and beautiful. What a rough world it would be if there were only men and boys in it,doing things in their rough way! A woman's task is to teach them gentleness and courtesy and love and kindness. It's a big task, too, Caddie-harder than cutting trees or building mills or damming rivers. It takes nerve and courage and patience, but good women have those things. They have them just as much as the men who build bridges and carve roads throught the wilderness. A woman's work is something fine and noble to grow up to, and it is just as important as a man's. But no man could ever do it so well. I don't want you to be the silly, affected person with fine clothes and manners whom folks sometimes call a lady. No, that is not what I want for you, my little girl. I want you to be a woman with a wise and understanding heart, healthy in body and honest in mind. Do you think you would like to be growing up into that woman now? How about it, Caddie, have we run with the colts long enough?"

Monday, May 5, 2008

Linger-ee-uh

When girls name underwear:
Poke Me, No Secrets, Bohemian Rhapsody, Let's Make Babies Blue, Chiquita Girl, Blue Steele, Banana Split, French Maid, Indian Princess, Sneak-a-Peek, Seaside Surprise, Sweet and Sexy, 3 Days Off, Chocolate Rain and Sailor's Delight.


Dibs to everyone for not buying anything from Victoria's Secret. What the "secret" is, I do not know. Because the woman definetly doesn't hide anything.
You're never too old for a funny face picture. Thank you all for not making the "pucker" face. Because it's just plain annoying.


She'll probably make me take this one down.


And we had way too much food left over.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

no comment

My WWII calendar just informed me: Adolf Hitler commited suicide in his bunker 63 years ago today.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Showersheba

Phone conversation:
Amy: You know, I bet Bathsheba was beautiful; just to catch a king's eye like that.
Mike: Um, Amy? She was taking a bath on her roof. Of course she caught his eye.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

sickness of the tougher, dominant sex

My Dad is sick. And I feel very sorry for him.... but it's freaking hilarious. I will quote him from 2 minutes ago: " Well, I have been vomiting for the last 48 hours and having diarrhea for the last 46." I mean... he's not counting or anything. And 20 minutes ago: "Man! I feel terrible." And 24 minutes ago, " I am so tired of throwing up." And 32 minutes ago, "Well, I guess I'll go to bed for 4 or 5 hours and then be up the rest of the night." We know Dad. You are sick. Don't misunderstand me... we are taking care of him, we are sympathetic, we are loving. But I have to keep fummling (haha! or muffling, whichever spelling you prefer!) the desire to laugh out loud. And the man will NOT stay in his room. There are seven healthy people in this house and we would really like to keep it that way. I just disinfected every surface possible and now he's leaning on the bar again. And using a different bathroom. One word. Q-U-A-R-A-N-T-I-N-E.

He skipped church today.... we came home this evening and I heard Mom say, "Dennis? Why is the bologna out?"
And he goes, "I thought I would try to eat some."
Dad, if Sprite and saltine crackers go straight through.... I really don't want to hear what bologna does.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

The moronic cycle

The phases of a sunburn:

1. Stupidity - I don't feel like putting on sunscreen
2. Stupidity cont. - 10:00-3:30 are okay hours... right?
3. Delusional - I'm a little pink but it will be gone in the morning.
4. Epiphany - Oh. My. Gosh. I look like a lobster who jumped in a vat of boiling strawberry jam.
5. Denial - I didn't know I was burning! It isn't my fault!
6. Guilt - Poor little skin cells. They didn't get to live their full life
7. Sales rep - For Aloe Vera
8. Murderer - You touch me one more time and I swear...
9. Return of pajamas - because they were almost completely absent for a few nights
10. Itchy - Think Baloo off of Jungle Book
11. Reptilian - Whoa! That was a big piece!
12. Admiration - Nice tan. Hey, thanks.
13. Amnesiac - It's so nice today. I think I'll go outside without sunscreen.

Who Knew?

For your future knowledge, Balderdash/Malarkey game nights, impress the boy/girl moments, and so on and so forth:

Jello, if hooked up to an EEG registers movements virtually identical to the brain waves of a healthy adult.
The Hershey's Kiss got its name from the puckering sound made by the manufactoring equipment as chocolate was dropped onto the conveyor belt.
Wedding cake was originally thrown at the bride and groom.
While his wife spent long hours posing for the figure, the model for the face of the Statue of Liberty was Charlotte Bartholdi, mother of the French sculptor Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi, who designed it.
Marcel Bich was read to take the sales success of his disposable ballpoint pen on to the international market. Originally named after himself, he realized that the Americans would pronounce it bitch, he smartly dropped the H and called it Bic.
The name OZ was thought up by L. Frank Baum when he looked up at his filing cabinets and noticed one drawer marked A-G, another marked H-N, and the last marked O-Z.
The sight of oranges in the Godfather film signals death, or a close call, is about to happen.
Director Wes Craven named Freddy Krueger after a kid in school who bullied him.
Marilyn Monroe developed her signature walk by hacking off one heel of a shoe.
Al Gore and Tommy Lee Jones were college roommates.
A recording of a camel's moan was slowed down for the tornado sound in Twister.
Cats have 2 sets of vocal chords.
Bullwhips, when properly snapped, exceed speeds of 742 mph, thus breaking the sound barrier.
The original Volkswagon Beetle was commissioned by Adolph Hitler.
Kemo sabe means "white shirt" in Apache.
Podunk is in Massachusetts.
The smell of Crayons is so familiar and soothing it has been known to lower blood pressure.

Monday, April 14, 2008

I wish naked was an option

I have decided I want to kill myself. By DNA-damaging-UV-rays. In all seriousness. I was told dying in my bed in old age was a sissy way to die so I have selected skin cancer as my way to meet Davy Jones. And if you touch my back, I will bury you alive, burn you at the stake, and keep you on bread and water for 3 days.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

up and down

Things I have done over the last seven days:

1. Study study study study study
2. Slept an average of 4 hours a night
3. Managed to get two different tan lines with winter white in between on my neckline
4. Changed my birthday on facebook and got 31 birthday wishes
5. Failed a test
6. Broke down. Like sobbing-head-on-arm broke down. It was good. But it was interrupted.
7. Interruption was good though. My friend quoted a Dane Cook skit about women's breakdowns... and when I saw the pattern, I couldn't help but laugh
8. Saw Dave Barnes live
9. Ticked off a friend... but it's all good now.
10. Realized I enjoy clinicals
11. Had an excrutiatingly detailed conversation with someone. I mean, TMI.

What I'm about to do: Sleep forever. Oh heavenly day.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

would you please leave... pig killer?

Our pastor has been traveling through Luke recently and last Sunday he had reached the story of Legion, the demon possessed man. The story had always made the hair on the back of my neck stand up. Especially the, " I am Legion, for we are many." Wow.
I was glad to see the story tackled. I think demons are ignored far too much. And as the soldiers of the Evil One, I really don't think they should be.
But something I had never thought of was mentioned. Remember how Jesus stepped out onto land and the man (or men according to Matthew) rushed down to meet him? I mean, Satan was totally setting up his move. He was sending down a legion of demons to meet Christ. And they barrel down and Jesus steps out and.... "What business do we have with each other, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg You, do not torment me." He hasn't said a word and they are begging for mercy! Don't send us to the abyss! Send us to the swine! And He does it almost nonchalantly. Oh, okay. Go into the pigs. And they surge into the future breakfasts of the Garasenes and send them plummenting into the sea.

Here's the kicker. The townspeople, in fear, ask Him to leave. I don't really understand this kind of fear. If I had witnessed this I wouldn't be in much of a hurry to start bossing the guy around. But He leaves. He makes the now-sane man stay as a messenger but He leaves.

Wow. A legion of demons just begged for mercy from this carpenter and then hurriedly obeyed His command and the humans don't want anything to do with Him. How typical. How horrible. He created us and we want nothing to do with Him. We have seen the glory of the cross, the resurrection of the body, the life everlasting... and are stilled annoyed by His presence. "Yeah, I'm glad for the crazy man and all. I'm glad that I can walk through the graveyard without being attacked.... but dang it! I was looking forward to my bacon and that man just put all our pigs in the sea. Who does he think he is?"
Oh, he's just Joseph's son. Just a carpenter. He only lived a perfect life and died a repulsive death because He wanted me to be with Him in Heaven. That's all. Big deal.