Summer Fitness Challenge

We’re mostly done with school work.  The reading and reports left require minimal participation on my part, so I am free to pursue other interests, like cleaning my house and sewing.  I decided to step up my exercise program a bit and take on the Crossfit Workout of the Day.  My husband loves this program, but he also loves a workout partner, so perhaps we can do it together.  Or at least commiserate.

Fortunately, I told him of my plans.  That link to the workout of the day reveals a very challenging workout.  It would take me all day long to do the number of reps they give.  And I would be so sore, I would never do it again.  My husband showed me the link for the scaled workouts.  If you click on the Crossfit WOD topic, and then go to the current day, someone has kindly suggested a modified routine for the “Pack” and for “Puppies.” 

Even doing the Puppies, modified and as lightweight as I possibly could (I didn’t do pull-ups, I did lat pull-downs), all I can say is OUCH. 

OUCHOUCHOUCHOUCHOUCH.  I’m determined to do this, but OUCH.

I have to go take a shower right now before my arms are too stiff to wash my hair.

Anybody else taking on a fitness challenge this summer?

Memorial Day

May 5, 1868
The 30th day of May, 1868, is designated for the purpose of strewing with flowers or otherwise decorating the graves of comrades who died in defense of their country during the late rebellion, and whose bodies now lie in almost every city, village, and hamlet church-yard in the land. In this observance no form of ceremony is prescribed, but posts and comrades will in their own way arrange such fitting services and testimonials of respect as circumstances may permit. 

Flags should be flown at half-mast until noon.

Enjoy your parties, but be sure to remember the dead.  Pray for them, and the families and friends left behind.

Blue Star Museums

Once again, the Blue Star Museums Initiative begins tomorrow, Memorial Day, and goes until Labor Day.  Last summer, we happily took advantage of the free museum admission offered to military families at participating facilities.  I noticed one new addition in my local area to last year’s list, so check your state, even if there was nothing on it last year.  This is only the second year running, so we can hope that it will only get wider participation every year.

To everything, there is a season

A few weeks ago, I’d had it with my cordless phones.  They were fairly old (in terms of modern technology), and were no longer holding a charge.  I had replaced the chargers and the batteries to no avail.  I went to Amazon and found the best rated, cheapest phones they had and got rid of the old set.

I’m happy enough with the new ones, and some features are better than the old ones.  One thing I really miss, though, is that the new ringtones are rather boring, and I can’t assign them to different numbers.  With my old set, if I heard “Old McDonald” I knew it was my friend, Christie. 

I thought I’d be ok with the change until my caller ID identified my husband as the caller. 

No more “Let Me Call You Sweetheart.” 

Makes me sad.


Weeks ago, I was lying on the porch swing with my head in my husband’s lap.  He was watching the fish jump out of the lake in the back while I lightly dozed and just enjoyed relaxing with him.

“Would it traumatize you if, many many years from now, I died lying here like this?” I asked him.

He looked down at me.

“It’s just so pleasant, so peaceful.  I’d just like to lie here like this and fall asleep and not wake up.”

“You’re not allowed to die,” was his response.

On Saturday, Billy came into the house to report that the swing had broken.  I investigated and discovered that rust, and not rambuctious children, was the culprit.  When I told Bill the terrible news, he said that he had seen lots of rust the last time he put it together (when we moved here over a year ago), and knew it wouldn’t make it to the next house.

“But I was going to die in that swing,” I moaned.

“You are not allowed to die – ever,” he insisted.

Each of us, separately, decided that perhaps the swing did not need replacing.  Then all day yesterday, we each kept thinking, “Oh, I think I’ll go sit in the – oh, maaaan, I guess not!”

We agreed, we need to replace it with something.  Maybe not a swing, maybe just a couch.  We have plenty of seats, but we want to sit next to each other.  I want to lie down with my head in his lap.

Even if he won’t let me die, ever.

Learning via natural (stinky) consequences

On returning from a three day road trip, the children were instructed to bring their dirty clothing to the laundry room.  They had been swimming in a hotel pool, and the bathing suits, still wet, had been packed up amongst the dirty clothes.  Yuck.

Fritz didn’t get the memo and unpacked his dirty things into the hamper in his bedroom.  I asked him to bring it down, but he moaned about the trip up the stairs again.  I let the matter drop.

Hours later, it was bedtime.  Fritz reappeared downstairs after the goodnights.

“Mom, where’s that spray stuff? My room smells.”

I gave him the Febreze and suggested he bring his dirty laundry down.  But what do I know? 

Sharing the same vision, or not

After camping this weekend, Bill and the boys set up the tent in the backyard to dry out.  In the evening, Bill was putting it away, and I went to help him with the rain fly, which is not rectangular.  He started to object to my pattern of folding.

“I usually fold the sides in to make it a rectangle,” he explained.

“It is a rectangle,” I insisted, gesturing to my not-very-rectangly shape. “You just have to think outside the box.”

“I was thinking outside the box,” he said.  “But my box is different than your box.”

Somehow, we make this marriage work.

Good intentions

Mary wanted scrambled eggs.  I gave her a bowl and told her she could have ONE egg.  She would crack them all if I didn’t specify how many.
She is surprisingly good at cracking eggs.  Rarely does she get any bits of shell in the bowl.  I think she’s better than some of her siblings.  She’s had a lot of practice.  I have not encouraged this practice.  She has insisted on learning.

I also gave her a spoon.  She likes her eggs beaten with a spoon.  I don’t argue with her, even though I disagree.  The spoon works.

Peter saw Mary beating her egg and decided he wanted one too.  I gave Mary another egg and added a bit of milk.

Mary knows I usually put oregano in my scrambled eggs.  Have you ever tried that?  It’s quite good.  She went to the spice rack on the back of the pantry door.  She selected the lemon pepper.  She’s only three; I guess I can’t expect her to read.  I showed her the label on the oregano and pointed out the letter “O”.  We’ll see if she remembers next time.

She went to the bowl to add the oregano.  Peter objected.  “I don’t like that,” he said.  I narrowed my eyes and stared at him, but decided to not say anything.  As I said, I usually add oregano to my eggs.  He eats it that way all the time.

Sweet Mary, though, was concerned for the finicky palate of her sibling.  With oregano in hand, and poised over the bowl of beaten eggs, she pointed to one side of the bowl.  “This is my egg,” she explained, “and that is yours,” indicating the other portion. 

Fortunately, Peter didn’t seem overly aware of the whole scrambling process.  And also, fortunately, he really doesn’t mind oregano in his eggs.

Circular savings

Twice in the last few weeks, I’ve tried to fill the 30 gallon tank of my 12 passenger van, and I’ve been cut off at $100, a few gallons shy of full.

I’m definitely avoiding unnecessary driving.

But today, I have a meeting on post, which is about a 25 mile trip.  After the meeting, I will head to the commissary (grocery store) which really does offer significant savings on many products.  They claim a 30% savings over the typical grocery store.  I believe them.  Even though they sell very few generic brands, often the brand name is cheaper than generic at the store.  Plus you can use coupons.  And meat is always cheaper, even cheaper than the sale prices I see locally.

But with the price of gas, I’m not sure if the drive is worth it.  Piggy-backing the trip because of the meeting, it is.


Yesterday, the kids were distraught over the breakfast selections.  I was not making pancakes, and they were left with Cheerios.  There was moaning.  Resigning themselves to a lengthy fast, they thought ahead to lunch and discovered that we had no bread.  There was more moaning.

I dropped everything to bake bread.  Lunch was saved.

My kitchen was hot.

It’s been A/C weather for at least a month down here in GA. 

Bread is expensive, especially good bread, yummy bread, healthy bread.  I’d like to make my own all the time, but I wonder if, in the summer, the increased cost to cool my home is worth the savings. 

I thought about baking all the bread on one day, the old-fashioned way.  I would need to bake at least 8 loaves for the week.  I only have 2 loaf pans.  That’s all day baking.

I thought about buying 6 more loaf pans.  Loaf pans, new, cost $10-$12 at Amazon.  I could spend $60-$80 on loaf pans, so I could bake bread all at once, so that I could save on A/C costs, and so that I could save on bread costs. 

I’m not quite sure if spending $60 to “save” money is worth it.

I thought about hitting some thrift stores or yard sales to see if I could find any loaf pans.

That would use gas.

Spending money on gas to buy used loaf pans to save money on groceries and A/C costs doesn’t seem so brilliant either.

Since I’ll be on post, I’ll check out the P/X (which is like a department store) to see if they have any decent loaf pans for less than Amazon.  I’m not hopeful, since their selection is usually poor.


My husband works not far from the commissary, and sending him to the store on a regular basis is another option for saving on groceries without spending money on gas.

I am loathe to lengthen his work day by another hour.

Then there’s the grocery shopping learning curve to deal with.  Buy this kind, not that kind.  Check to see if the coupon saves money over the usual brand.  Look to see what’s on sale and stock up.  Suddenly remember something not on the list.  Prioritize.

And not buy things that look yummy just because you are shopping at dinner time.  Right there, I think we’d lose any savings.


Anybody else feeling the gas and grocery price pinch? 

pretty, happy, funny, real

round button chicken

I’m playing along with Leila today.


The girls performed their dance recital at a local Easter Egg hunt on Holy Saturday.  Pretty and graceful.


I got this chaise lounge for free from friend and fellow blogger, Katherine.  It has spent the last 2 years in two garages awaiting re-covering.  When I found out that there was a woman in town who did re-upholstery, and she had reasonable prices, I asked my husband if it was OK to take it in. 

“Oh, you mean that thing in the garage I keep tripping over?  YES.  Please get it recovered.”

Happy husband AND happy wife.


Alexander the Great

“Mom.  I’m gonna paint that guy.”

I consider that premeditation.


I bought two of those large bouncing balls at the store.  Cheap fun.

Well, not so cheap fun when they play indoors and break your favorite statue of the Blessed Mother.