Tuesday, June 30, 2009

We like Skype

My sister and I got hooked up on Skype. We like it! With Skype you can make phone calls on your computer. We're saving on cell phone time. And you can include video with your voice. It was a hoot. At first we just sat and grinned at each other! We're trying to improve video quality. I'm afraid my satellite won't be fast enough because you need at least 24-38 fps (frames per second) and I only have a measly eight fps. Consequently, for both of us our voices are out of whack with the video image and the video is fuzzy and/or frozen. I checked my transfer rate and it's so slow that we're going to call the satellite dish man again to see if he can help. Last night I had 30 kbps upload speed. That should be a crime. Normally it's not that slow for us.

July 4th is one of the busiest days of the year for this park. This pic is from last week-end. This coming week-end they'll be parked two, three, and four deep along the shore! It gets wild and crazy. Last year the park had about 109,000 visitors for the 4th. If 1% of those people get drunk and get in arguments and fights that's a lot of work for the rangers.

My Vancoymcin antibiotic started working well for me yesterday. Yesterday I had no discomfort at all and I was able to do everything I needed to get done, and with a dash of joy added. Today I feel very well too. All the days before were not great and Saturday was a bad day. On Saturday I drove our son to swim lesson a mere 15 minutes from here. On the way, my body decided it had to go to the bathroom. I parked fast and ran fast and the bad news is I did not make it to the head in time. I poohed some in my swimsuit. This is life with antibiotic induced colitis. I do like the Vancomycin better than Flagyl. On Flagyl my body ached so much. I thought I was simply falling apart, but now that I'm off Flagyl and the body aches have ceased I realize it was a side effect. One morning last week I couldn't even bend over to brush my teeth. I couldn't kneel down at all or I couldn't get up. I'm glad that part is better. Ninety-five percent of people are cured with Vancomycin. I pray I am one of those 95%.

A kind of funny thing happened on Sunday. I went up to the front to ask for healing at the alter call. I am quiet and my pastor's hearing is not excellent. Well, I told him, "I'm on the last medicine and it's not working," and he thought I said I had asthma. He prayed over me for healing of asthma and kind of loudly too. I was too embarrassed to correct him. His wife laid hands on me too. I figured God knows what I'm needing and asking for even if pastor got the words wrong. I came home and said to my husband, "Honey, I'm healed of asthma!" Hehe. My colitis symptoms did improve muchly on Monday, thank you Lord.

Lastly, I'm doing Bible teaching with my son on the topic of saving sex for marriage using examples in The Word such as how Joseph reacted when pharoah's wife wanted his bod. What did he do? He ran and he ran so fast she was left holding his coat!

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Art, maybe

Helen's hanging plant

Out of the camera this photo was plain, mustard colored, and flat, yet it interested me. I pulled it into Photoshop and, like magic, as I post-processed it I found all these fantastic cracks and child's drawings on the wall - none of which show in the original photo. It's kinda cool. It's in my friend's yard. There's a door on the same wall I might do next. I snapped the door today but I will go back and try including the concrete steps in the frame and see if it looks better that way.

My memorizations are going well. I'm working on Jeremiah 9:23-24 and I almost have it done. It's about what God values. I have one song memorized now too. One whole song! Which reminds me. My new favorite girl band is called Parousia.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Day by day

Monday right before 3:00pm was the worst. The Flagyl stopped working and I felt very bad. I thought it would be no problem to wait over the week-end for Wal-Mart to ship in the Vancomycin, but if I knew then what I'd be in for I'd have driven the hour and a half to Las Cruces. Now I'm on the antibiotic that my doctor calls the "Big Gun" against C. Diff and I hope and pray it will restore my fauna and flora. My goodness, it's terrible having something like this wrong, and be wrong for so long. It's like living life under a blanket with all the daily joys of life muffled. I will say the Vancomycin is easier to take. It's a capsule and doesn't taste awful like the other does. Would it kill them to put a little coating on that stinkin' Flagyl?

I went for a walk and it was a lovely day with cloud cover. Hot, but beautiful. I felt much improved all day but the walk made my tummy ache. We had a tad bit of rain. In the morning a roadrunner was clucking right under my bed outside the trailer. My dad and his wife stopped by on their way home from Nebraska and we had a really nice two hour visit.

My husband and son are watching "The Three Stooges" and laughing like crazy. I find the Stooges mildly amusing. It's got to be in the genes.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Would those birds shut up

The horses are called Paints. I guess they're a combination Pinto and Quarter Horse. Don't quote me on that, but it's what I read. There was another white horse and he put his head in our truck. That was exciting! They're domestic horses. That's why he was so friendly.

Yesterday I woke at 4:00am and couldn't sleep. At 5:00am a quail started crowing incessantly every 30 seconds and he continued his exultation for 30 minutes. I was gritting my teeth thinking is the next crow going to be 25 seconds or 30. Then I thought, oh dear, but I love the quail. What in the world is the matter with me? I stand at the window and wait to see who will get a drink of water and wonder, will it be a dove, a sparrow, a roadrunner, a mockingbird, a quail, or a squirrel who comes for the next sip. I have to meditate and pray a Proverb. Proverbs 17:22 - A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. So true.

My husband and son are working the kiosk at the Visitor's Center till 3:00pm. 'Tis busy here this week-end. Beautiful day with puffball clouds all around. We ordered my husband a new money clip for Father's Day. It won't come in till Tuesday though. Drats. It's a nice Indian Head Nickel style. He lost the one that I gave him about 15 years ago. He left it on top of the change machine at the laundromat and someone took it. Luckily, he had taken his money out of it. He shouldn't have set it down. I'm going to make him that Nilla Vanilla Cookie Wafer with banana and vanilla pudding recipe for a special dessert. I hope he'll like it.

We're proud owners a yet another chip in our windshield. Yesterday a regular old Ford truck passed us on the left and a teeny rock hit our windshield. Now we have three chips and a crack in it. We may have to think about replacing it!

I'm starting a different antibiotic on Monday. The pharmacy doesn't have it in stock today. My doctor said this next antibiotic is the big gun for use against C. Diff. The Flagyl didn't seem to be working for me this time. He said Flagyl works for a limited time and it looks like I need this other medicine. I haven't felt well for a week. Here's my big whine about it. WAAAAAAAH. And I'm done whining. That's the only whine allowed for that. I have a swollen cold sore on my upper lip that hasn't scabbed yet. That garners its own separate whine. Waaaaaah! Okay, done. :)

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Flag earrings

My sister wanted to see the 4th of July earrings I made so my son took some quickie pics for me.

In this pic, I look good but you can't see the earrings. I look so nice in semi-light!
I just took my pill. I take it with food but it still makes my tummy feel, meh, so-so. I used to enjoy having a bedtime snack but now that I have to take this pill with food I've come to hate a bedtime snack.

I gave our son a big pep talk on the importance of writing his pre-algebra problems from the top down neatly and legibly. I told him math develops logical thinking and people always like to whine and say "I'll never use this math in real life," but in reality, they do. It's important to be able to think in an orderly manner. I said a lot more too, but it escapes me what I said. Anyhoo, he responded favorably and has written neat and legible math problems for two days - in a row.

At the ranch

"The Grandmother"
She's been around a long time!

Deer in the distance

With the naked eye I could hardly make out these deer. My camera saw them clearly though which I didn't realize till I downloaded the pics. We spent the day at the ranch yesterday and it was peaceful and fun. We drove down a canyon and we saw horses and cows, calves, and deer. Branding day is the 27th and it's always a big event. They have about ten calves this year. That's a lot for this ranch. They'll be branding some bulls too. It's going to be a sight to see the men pull down those big, strong animals.

Had a terrible dream the other night. Dreamt I went to someone other than Ivan to get my ends trimmed. I looked in the mirror and my hair was cut in that style that everyone is wearing lately; real short at the nape and above shoulder length on the side. I'm sure I dreamt of that style because I was sitting in church looking at the pastor's daughter flip her hair about and she has that style. I asked the hair stylist what happened and why she did it. She said she didn't know. Then to top it off I dreamt my stomach was really big and round and sticking out and that's not all. When I walked I stomped around like Frankenstein. What a nightmare.

It's such a pretty day here. I can't get enough of sky, sky, sky.

Monday, June 15, 2009

Our dish is fixed

Saturday's New Mexico sunset

We're back in New Mexico and we're so fortunate. We got a site with full hook-ups for a month and my husband is volunteering. It's worked out well. My husband called up the volunteer coordinator even though all the sites we're full for the summer when we left, but one site came open! And then the Hughes.net man came out to the park and fixed our satellite dish for us. We have a brand new arm and nose on the dish. It works now! He was a knowledgeable technician.

On the down side, that nasty C. diff returned. My good bacteria are having a hard time flourishing I guess. I'm on a med for 21 days to fix it. Last night at evening church I asked my friends there to pray for me and Brother David, the assistant pastor, got the anointing oil out for me and he and his wife and some others that I like a lot, prayed for me. I have a hard time asking and I knew I should ask but it was so hard doing it. Finally, only a few people were left in church and I asked him and man, my face turned red as a beet. Clunk me on the head will ya. I told him he could pray for me later at his home but he said, "Liliana, you know us and if we're gonna pray we're gonna pray it right now."

Look at those sunset photos, eh? Glory to God. I went for a walk and the colors were amazing. I was snappin' and snappin' hoping my camera would catch the brilliance. Fire in the sky!

It's a regular, normal, homeschooling day today. No. Driving.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Oklahoma thunder

National Cathedral in Washington, D.C. Photo taken June 5, 2009

We stopped at a perfect time. It was about 3:30pm and started to rain and there was a KOA Kampground only a few miles away. We got completely setup and inside within ten minutes. And we have thunder! Big, giant, rumbling, bumbling thunder! As long as there's no tornado we like it.

My husband just cut up some watermelon for us to eat and it's delicious. Watermelon. It reminds me of, hmmm, it reminds me of being eight years old in Nebraska, of hot summer time and we kids running around having a watermelon seed spitting fight. It was Timmy and Chrissy and me. Timmy was one year my junior and Chrissy and I were the same age. Timmy was my first kiss. It was in the days when a peck between a little boy and girl was not illegal and it was sweet, not vulgar. They call him Tim now, not Timmy, of course. He had curly blonde hair.

A couple weeks ago when I was at the hospital I got three hair compliments at once and it was from three black girls. I was at the lab and my hair was down and they said I had pretty hair, long hair, and then my two favorite comments, they liked how it shows the change in my hair color over time, and it's healthy. I totally should have told them I attribute its health to coconut oil but being as how I had dropped off some samples I wanted to escape quickly and quietly.

Hafta make dinner now. It's leftover homemade chicken noodle soup, one of our favorites. Having soup for dinner on a rainy day - you can't beat it. Son has had a sore throat and fever so it'll be good for him. It'll soothe his throat.

Monday, June 08, 2009

After 24 years, I still blush

I thought I read somewhere that after age 50 people don't blush anymore? I still blush and have often blushed easily.

Today my husband said I haven't been doing much dancing. That's a big duh. People with diarrhea just don't dance. But I digress. I am wearing my Peace, Love, Belly Dance top which is kinda cute and I said, "No, I haven't felt much like a belly dancer, that's true." And then he said I still looked like one. That's when I turned red and he said he can't believe I still blush because of my own husband. I don't know why I turn red sometimes! I guess I should just be glad he gets over me being sick so easily. Back in 2005 when I barfed till dawn I thought he'd never touch me again after hearing me doubled over the commode with the flu. The next week, he's kissin' me like always. Men have a short memory maybe. That's a good thing.

There is one time I blushed that I've never been able to forget and I wish I could. It happened at my new job as a city planning intern. I found out I had blown out the competition for this job so I was brimming with self-confidence. On my first day the Director of Planning took me around to meet the employees and the urban planners, most of whom were men. He introduced me to my boss-to-be and when the director said, "And I'd like you to meet Dick," I shook his hand and could feel my face turning from pink to red. Have you ever experienced the unmitigated horror of not being able to stop an oncoming blush! I didn't think any bad thoughts. Really I didn't! I was just embarrassed for him that his name was Dick I guess. There's no way to disguise a blush. You lose all the upper hand, all coolness, once you have a red face hanging out there. You can't cover it up. You can't bring your hands up to your face because that'll just highlight the situation. Sigh. I'm sure the two of them had a good laugh about it later at my expense.

Hey! My husband said there are fireflies outside. Oh boy! I gotta go see some fireflies. We don't have those in California or New Mexico.

Saturday, June 06, 2009


I ask you, who could resist? Somehow, we did! Haha! Chambersburg, Pennsylvania.

We toured Washington, D.C. yesterday. Got up at 5:00am and got home at 7:25pm. We went on a tour bus. My feets is still sore! My favorite part was the Lincoln Memorial. Wow. It's way bigger than I thought. And we visited the Smithsonian, and saw the Washington Monument, the Vietnam Veteran's wall, the WWII Memorial, the White House. It was incredible. At the National Archive our eyes touched one of the four original existing Magna Cartas from 1215, the original Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the some of the Amendments.

The other night we went to bed and woke up the next morning to find fuel had gone up 20¢ at the gas station we had scoped out. If only we had fueled up before bed!

We're on our way back to New Mexico to chill for awhile and wait for the doctor bills to roll in so we can pay 'em off. I thank the Lord we can pay our bills.

Our son had a great time tonight at a flashlight candy hunt. Also we're grateful for his sharp little eyes. Today he noticed the valve stem on a trailer tire was puffed out. My husband thinks it's defective so he changed it out and put on the spare while we're here in a campground. That kid is so observant. He's worth his weight in gold. 'Tis a driving day tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 03, 2009

He's tired of driving!

When people kept asking us how long we'd live in a trailer and travel I would say, "I guess we'll quit traveling when my husband says he's tired of driving." Well! He said it yesterday. And he said it again today. So. It's official. As in double official.

In itself it doesn't change anything drastically but it gives us a direction. I always wondered, how would we stop? I didn't think I'd ever want a house, but now! I kinda do. This year there's been no joy in the driving. And I used to wonder how could we all want to stop traveling at the same time? God works in miraculous ways. We all three want to settle down and all the praying I've done asking where to settle? Answered. We'll settle in New Mexico and we all three agree. We all three love it. We all three are ready.

So that'll open a new chapter - the chapter of finding an abode. New happiness to find, new challenges to face. But the chapter doesn't start yet.

Gettysburg. We arrived today and went to the Gettysburg Museum and the 20 minute movie was so good. I almost cried about three times. We'll be here a couple days. There's an auto tour we want to take and maybe a bus tour into Washington, D.C. I was thinking of spending a couple weeks to drive several times into D.C., but we can't take it here for that long. We want to head out west. It's more open there. We prefer the open land. Here there are so many trees and cars and people. We are claustrophobic from it. I told my husband today that I think I have a touch of ye olde depression closing in and I think it's because we're not in a place we really want to be. Course, my lame illnesses of the past two months are a major contribution too, but we just really need some open road soon. I praise the Lord for His answer in perfect clarity. It is an awesome God we serve.

It was a four state day today: Tennessee, Virgina, West Virgina, Pennsylvania. In the median between the interstate going north and south there was a carpet of wild red Iceland Poppies! Quite a sight. I love those flowers. And we didn't know the Bible Belt came up this far. First off, crosses. We've seen about four giant crosses. And on the radio you can find a sermon to listen to any time of day! And on the interstate today was a flashing sign with a warning of only one lane ahead and it also flashed "Christian Enlightenment." Whuh? Who put that in a state sign? The ACLU would be on it like white on rice.

The photo is the side of the road on the way to KOA.

Monday, June 01, 2009

Leaving Smokies

View from the walking path going to Clingman's Dome.

A faraway bear. I'm scared of bears. Do you see the butterfly?

We're leaving the Smoky Mountains tomorrow. It was okay. We spent two days in the park. Yesterday we went to Clingman's Dome, and today to Cademan's Cove which is the most popular spot in the park. Cademan's is a one lane, one way 11 mile loop and people drive slow. Going in we were all fresh but coming out we were headachy and tired and hungry. People are as bad as at Yellowstone - they stop and no one can get around them. That part was kind of miserable. The best sighting today was a pileated woodpecker. He was big. We saw two black bears (a mama and her teen), one deer crossing a cemetery, and some turkey birds.

I was a little disappointed with the buildings at Cademan's Cove. The churches are so well kept that they didn't look old. They had the windows replaced and the part between the panes was plastic so I know they're new and all three churches were freshly painted. I expected them to look old. The cabins and outbuildings, well, I couldn't photograph some of them without the walking path chain being in the photo or cars. That's not very authentic! Then at the other end of the park, yesterday, I took a bunch of photos of the landscape and when I downloaded them they looked like a bunch of regular ol' trees and hills. Hmmm. A little disappointed. I like trees. We need trees. I'm the first to holler, "Hooray it's Arbor Day!" (That might be a stretch.) But I guess you need a specially trained eye to catch a really good tree doing what trees do.

I'm glad we came so I can say we've been here. I think fall with the changing leaves would be spectacular, but it's so crowded. On Sunday the park was packed. I suspect all the eastern parks are more cramped than the National Parks west of the Mississippi because of the high population of the eastern states. It's a blanket statement, but generally.

It's 513 miles to Gettysburg.

Now for the lyrics to one of my favorite songs from fourth grade. We sang it at school.

On top of Old Smokey,
All covered with snow,
I lost my true lover,
For courting too slow.

For courting's a pleasure,
But parting is grief,
And a false-hearted lover,
Is worse than a thief.

A thief will just rob you,
And take what you have,
But a false-hearted lover,
Will lead you to your grave.

The grave will decay you,
And turn you to dust,
Not one boy in a hundred
A poor girl can trust.

They'll hug you and kiss you,
And tell you more lies,
Than crossties on a railroad,
Or stars in the sky.

So come ye young maidens,
And listen to me,
Never place your affection
In a green willow tree.

For the leaves they will wither,
The roots they will die,
And you'll be forsaken,
And never know why.