Monday, December 27, 2010

Christmas 2010 New and Old Traditions

     Christmas in the Mussack household doesn't just happen on Christmas Day but actually begins a few months before (Octoberish) when my planning sensors start ringing warning bells reminding me that the holidays are just around the corner. I love this season from mid-October until mid-Jan. The season includes not just the major celebration days Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas but my birthday, my sons' birthday, my husbands and mine anniversary (27 years this year!) and my parents anniversary in mid-January (59 years for them - wow!).

I love picking out the gifts for my family and though I may complain a lot about how it doesn't feel like Christmas and I get blue... that is only because I get so nostalgic for Christmas past - when the children were small and the excitement of keeping secrets and watching their faces light up at their Santa presents, and seeing them eagerly soaking in the Christmas story of the babe born in the manger and the true reason for the season. Forget them not being able to sleep... I wasn't able to sleep... my dear husband had to hold me back a couple of times from waking them at 3 am to go open presents.

This year was stressful and my husband was away at work and the youngest is stationed overseas, my Dad is in a nursing home and the dog was pregnant. But I had my daughter and son-in-law and my oldest son here with me and Christmas was still wonderful and exciting. Different though... but I am grateful for any chance I have to spend time with my family. We forego the traditional turkey or ham and made pot roast... Kim says she is going to start this tradition with her family and tell her children that they are having the Who Rare Roast Beast (from the Grinch)!

Everyone was happy with the sacrifices made and money spent to get the gifts that was received. I got Kimberly a bunch of little things, sweater from Target, home decorations, etc. Brent got his traditional annual lottery tickets. I think he won back about $10. (Oh well)... JD got his new leather jacket that fits him perfectly.

Santa sent me a CRICUT IMAGINE... I was so happy... Huge hugs and kisses to Santa.
JD got me a waffle iron... I have been craving Belgian Waffles and now I can make my own.
The dog gave me the best gift of all - two days after Christmas she gave birth to six adorable Chizer puppies (Chihuahua - Mini-Schnauzer mix)

I wish I could've been two places at once this year because I would've really have liked to be with my Dad, Mom, and brothers and sister. I miss them and Dad is not in the best of health.

Then the best time of all - the day after Christmas... after Christmas shopping - when Kim and I stock up on seasonal decorations for next year because after all... Christmas will continue on and on and on as long as we keep it in our hearts, start new traditions, and remember that the best part is being with those with we love!

The 2010 Christmas tree... We had to put all of the presents in the bay window because of all the dogs.

The Build - A- Bear box is to me from Kim. Another tradition I have is when one of my children leave home I have them get me a Build-A-Bear and put a voice recording in it. Then when I get lonely I play the sound of their voice and it makes me feel closer to them.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


  Making two scrapbook layouts of a younger me and a younger hubby and making Thanksgiving cards made me reflect on how truly grateful I am for everything. Grateful that David has a job, grateful that I get to travel and see my daughter, grateful for my parents, sister, brothers, aunts and uncles, cousins (of whom I have plenty), mother-in-law, brothers-in-law, my dogs, my kids (definitely my kids).

JD cleaned out one of the Jeeps for me today and bought it a drawing pad that belonged to Kimberly. I opened it up and lo and behold there were all her drawings and ideas for her wedding to the first guy she was engaged too. Made me think how grateful I am that God's plan are not necessarily our plans. He has all things in control and takes care of the details if we just put our trust in Him. (Proverbs 3: 5-8) She is now married to a wonderful man who loves her very much.

Here's the cards I made: just using leftovers of paper, ribbon, rub-ons, Stampin Up acorn stamp, markers, etc.

Card #1

Card #2


I am grateful for:

Gods grace, goodness and greatness because He has given me

Richly, all things, salvation and many blessings

And for this

Truly thankful I am;

Enjoying life each and every moment of each and every day

Filled with His Spirit from above

Underneath the shelter of His wings and His encompassing


Never enough my frail human cries out

Everlasting Father, eternal God

Save me, keep me

Shepherd of my soul.

by: Deborah Mussack 10/29/2002

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Times They Are A-Changin Again.

Today is a day of celebration - of sorts - mixed with sadness. I have finished all my classes in my Masters of Special Education. Turned in the last final assignment today. Yea!!!! I am happy. I honestly can't believe I have finished and have been approved to start student teaching in the spring semester. Where has the time gone? Seems like only yesterday, I had started my Associates in Degree. I feel like the eternal student.

Then I feel sad cuz I have made so many new friends during this course and it is hard to say goodbye - especially to my team mates. Hopefully, we will be able to keep in touch. I still keep in touch with many of my fellow classmates from my Bachelors Degree.

Note: my classes were online... so if you comment to my blog with substantive replies you will keep me from feeling sad since I will have someone to discuss things with... :>)

So.. on to another chapter in my life...Student Teaching and who knows?? By this time next year, maybe Special Education Teacher. Wow! Gulp...

Monday, November 1, 2010

Starting NaNoWriMo

November 1, all the chores are done for the day, errands are ran. I still have school work to do and bills to pay, but now I can focus on my novel for this month. My characters have all been jumping around in my head since the beginning of October. This year, I have decided to start with characters instead of a plot. I am just going to let my characters tell the story. And I'm not going to tell anybody what my story is about until December 1st, when anyone who wants to can read. It seems like every year I do more talking about what I want to write instead of actually writing. So this year... I am going to be hush, hush... shhh.... it's a secret.

Well, guess I'll go get started now. Pray for me... Wish me luck. Too stay on top NaNoWriMo suggests writing about 1667 words a day. That's a lot of words to write. Why is it I can get a 1700 word paper written for school in less time than 1667 words in a paper. Maybe because with the school paper, I have a given topic....

I might be asking some of you for ideas to get me over the hurdles when I get writers block!

Alright here goes!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Get Her While She's Down

This is a ranting blog.. so forgive me while I rant and rave.... but see the cute little dog in my blog picture...he's not so cute anymore!!! Well, yes he is, he still melts my heart when I look at him and have to pick him and snuggle him. Which he won't and hasn't let me do this past week because our mini-female schnauzer is in heat. Poor guy quivers uncontrollably. My daughter said imagine the "horniest" a guy has ever felt toward a female and then think that the poor male dog is probably having those feelings ten fold since he can only do the deed once or twice a year... if you (the owner) let him.

Well, I didn't think Journey (the Chihuahua) - all 8 pounds of him would be able to "do the deed" with the 20 pound mini-Schnauzer, he's so short and she's so tall... but the minute, the very minute I turn my back, he gets her while she's laying down. 4 in the morning, I had just come back into the bedroom, (I couldn't sleep last night) and the minute I lay down, I hear Journey yelping like he's pain. David sits up in bed going - Whaaaaattttt? I am yelling at him - he tied himself to Hallee. We run out to the living room and Halle is trying to unattach him (she is very sensitive regarding her booty region). I had to hold her down last night or I think she would've dragged the poor Chihuahua off the couch, outside and down the deck stairs, ripping the stem off the apple.

(Hallee - the new momma to be?)

So now my dilemma, do they have a morning after pill for female dogs? The timing could be nothing but bad. I was going to take a trip right around the time the puppies will be born. Grrrrrrrrr. (Yea dogs I'm growling at you). Let my guard grow lax, and he gets her when she's down.

On a good note though a Chizer is a mixed-designer breed and they are kind of cute.
 Seriously? Do I need this now?

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Tea Time Cards

 Went to a Craft Fair at Ellicott Elementary last Saturday and met a couple of ladies who sell tea. Not tea bags but real tea! The loose kind that you have to use a strainer for when you brew it. One of the ladies gave me a sample of hot Mango Tea sweetened with honey... OM! It was good! I was bored - not very many came to the craft fair to buy anything so I made her a card with my Cricut Expression... just a simple card with a flower background, a teapot with a heart on it and the words I Love Tea. Gave it the one of the ladies and she loved it. Now she wants me to make more... this could be an ongoing deal since they attend quite a few craft fairs. Here are a few I made today... Don't know if I'm too terribly pleased with them yet... but she said be creative and make various kinds. If anyone reads this let me know what you think...


Also made a few scrapbook pages today....

The top card was made with my Cricut Expression (using my Gypsy of course) and the cartridge Lovely Florals to make the background. The heart is from Indie Art and the letters are from Ashlynns Alphabet. I used the yellow Viva Decor pen to fill in the centers of the flowers in the background. The second card uses the Alice in Wonderland Designer Paper, a heart from Indie Art and the teapot from Ashlynns Alphabet. Oh and I added a scalloped border at the top using light green paper.  I used an acrylic stamp to stamp Tea Time in the middle of the teapot using Mango Mamba (?) stamping pad from Stampin Up. I finished the second card by putting white Stickles around the edges of the heart.

I had fun!

Monday, February 15, 2010

Progress Towards Perfection

I learned a new vocabulary word... this weekend. Heuristics, which basically means the trial and error method aid to solve a problem. Heuristics can be applied to science, education and well, why not life in general? It seems like I am forever using the trial and error method to solve a problem in my life...especially in the area of weight loss. I am an all or nothing person when it comes to dieting. I either stick to the "plan" or I don't. Usually, I don't, because I begin to feel deprived. My "wanter" starts wanting something that is not on the plan (like pasta). So I add something to my diet through the trial and error method. Sometimes what I added works but if it doesn't, I feel guilty and wonder what's the use? Am I doomed forever to be overweight?

Of course there are other aspects of our life that we apply heuristics to. Time management, finances, relationships and our spiritual walk. Trial and error. A progess towards perfection. Trials will happen. They are inevitable. And as humans we will err. The real battle comes though when we choose to give up because we have once again erred. We begin to question ourselves, doubt sets in, discouragement invades. We beat ourselves up through our negativity. Worst of all, is the obvious fact that we lose focus of who we are. Human, definitely, but more than conquerors through the blood of Jesus Christ. (I remember Ladelle Peabody singing that song when I was teenager. Those of you there in Tucson, might remember her) "We've been made more than conquerors, overcomers in this life. We've been made victorious through the blood of Jesus Christ"

Somebody asked the question today... What's the key? What's the key to losing weight? What's the key to this trial and error method of life?

I think it is found in James 1:2 "Count it all joy, my brothers (or SISTERS), when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing....

The keys: Joy, faith, steadfastness, and hope because you are (and I am) a progress towards perfection. Will we get it right the first time? Probably not... but keep on going. Stay strong.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Where I'm From

I just found out there is a contest for this type of poem. The funny thing is I wrote this about a month ago.
Where I'm From
I am from Marjorie and Sam, Harold and Berniece, Gladys and Sam.
I am from the sprawling metropolis of Des Moines, and the deserts of Arizona. The farmlands of Missouri, the icy coldness and beauty of Alaska and the historical surroundings of Virginia. My heart belongs to the Rocky Mountains with the majestic mountains, rolling meadows and cities with that small town feeling.
I am from oatmeal or Wheaties at breakfast and the era of Maid Rites and pork tenderloin sandwiches. I am from fried chicken every Sunday and the lovers of chicken gizzards and oyster stew.
I am from Scrabble and Anagram players - lovers of words - who taught me to love words too.
I am from hard workers - satisifed with life - never having to much but always just enough.
I am from a Democrat who taught me to be Independent.
I am from music - especially the hymns and Southern Gospel tunes of years gone by.
I come from the puritanical , serious and intellectual on my fathers side and the down-to-earth, practical, fun-loving and emotional on my mothers side. My parents had a lot of nerve thinking they could get along for a lifetime.
Somehow my parents intertwined these traits into my innermost being to make me who I am today.
I am serious enough to laugh, practical enough to embellish, emotional yet intellectual, down-to-earth with good common sense but puritanical enough to beleive that there are absolute truths.