Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Traffic control

Tomorrow we do four hours of traffic control from 5pm to 9pm. Not looking forward to it, but at least we won't be in the hot sun. Monday is 4th of July. We worked the Visitor's Center for an hour today. It wasn't too bad. We didn't get backed up. We're expecting well over 100,000 visitors for the week-end. They're already here some of them. Our loop is full and the shoreline is filling up. There was a car crash in the park today, but people weren't hurt.

My bellydance friend phoned me today and invited me to El Paso to watch her perform and do some workshops. I'm not going to go. I feel badly about the other girl who would share a room with us. She's a beautiful and talented dancer. Her father a Baptist minister. Something about her aches my heart.  Is it the Holy Spirit?

I think she sells her body, that is, she sells her self. They think poor little Lil is blind. It's the body the men want, but the self gets taken in the bargain. One can say she keeps her self separate, but it's a slow death of the heart. The money and the travel she finds irresistible. I think she cannot be paid enough for the part of her inside self that's getting ruined. And children are not dumb. Sooner or later they know what their mother is doing. It's not a good living. It's a bad living. Pretty it up with expensive clothes and exotic places for a season. One day you wake up older and still alone in your parent's home.

Me. I'd rather be a secretary making minimum wage eating Rosarita Refrieds every night and take care of myself.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

A finding

I find that when I go to sleep at night I'm very comforted by the feeling of my iPod in my hand. I always keep it right under my pillow so I can feel around and find it, in the dark, without ever waking up my husband. Last night I didn't even need to put my ear pods in my ears. Are they called ear pods. The ear thingies. I didn't even put them in. I was holding my iPod, my pillow all soft and puffy around my head, my blankets tucked under my chin just right, and I drifted off into a sweet sleep. I said my prayers but didn't finish with "in the name of Jesus." I popped awake and added a few more people and told God these are all together in one batch even though I went to sleep for a few minutes in between, in the name of Jesus, your precious Son, amen. Then I slept all night. I slumbered which is to be dormant or quiescent. This is a good thing for the insomniac, which I hate to use that word, so rather let me say, when you're a night owl.

Sunday, June 27, 2010


I ordered a pizza for dinner. Went to pick it up and they said they had no order for me. I was a little bent out of shape because we were hungry. They asked if I ordered it from their store and I said, Well, of course I did.

Then I sat down and thought for a minute. Looked at my phoney-phone-phone. Looked up the numbaroo I dialed. I guess I put the number for Pizza Hut in my phone when we were visiting California. Ordered a pizza two states away. Whoopsie! I didn't pick it up either!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

A day

Miss him. He's gone to 4-H Pig School. I've been looking forward to him being gone so we could be free. Now he's gone and I'm somewhat miserable. What's this? A crack in my exterior?

Guess I'll hem my pants. I got some new tops. Here's one. I got the pink one. It's superly, duperly cute. I hope it washes well. I bought everything in a size large which is inch-wise one size too big, but everything fit. Some of the reviews said to buy one size up. I like those reviews. Sometimes they're pretty helpful. A lot of the dancewear does run small. If you have any actual curves you may burst the seams. I might cut off the sleeve ribbon. It's actually cute, but may be too muchy cutie for me. I do like off the shoulder stuff. Selena schooled me on a bunch of fashion tips and she said the fashion mag informed her that my build looks best in off the shoulder garments.

Saw about a dozen baby quail yesterday. A big batch.

I'm a little homesick and I'm the one at home.

I deleted the "Rockstar" by Prima J song from my list. Well, might keep the song because it cracks me up, but turned out the video is too jumpy for me. . . . Not in favor of the jumping.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Sweetest Sound

My husband laughing while talking on the phone with our eldest son.


Baby Liliana's laugh.

Next song

The next song I'm adding is Rockstar by Prima J. I should probably not link to it because YouTube videos have a way of disappearing. Anyhoo, it has a very cute beat and the words are just terrible. Not profane, but it's about two highly conceited girls who think they're models and gorgeous and that everyone is looking at them. Like Grama says, these are things you shouldn't say about yourself. You should let other people say them about you.

I'm going to use it in the beginning as a warm-up. I think it's cute and very easy. I've been wasting billions of minutes trying to find a converter, a free one, that will convert iTunes songs to WAV format so that I can do a radio edit. I thought this song said, "Oh my God" in it, and I was going to reverse God to say dog. Heh. But wonder of wonders. I checked two different sets of lyrics on YouTube and listened over and over, and I'm sure they're not saying "Oh my God." I couldn't believe it. All this time I've wasted thinking I needed to edit it.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

A mere 15 minutes

I have all of 15 minutes of Zumba songs memorized.  I have 45 minutes to go.  Ohmygosh.  It's taken me a month to memorize this much.  I have to go faster.

In college I had nearly enough dance credits to minor in dance.  One class stopped me.  Choreography.  I was afraid to take choreography.  You had to audition students, pick music, create choreography, teach it, and see it performed in the once yearly Student Dance Concert. The college had a very good dance department and they still give performances, to this day, to a full house. How I wish I had expressed my fear with someone who could have encouraged me.  I was too quiet though.  Twenty-five years later I have the opportunity to do what I was too chicken to do back then. 

"If you can hear the inaudible, think the unthinkable, see the invisible, believe the incredible, you can do the impossible."  

In the Zumba class I know we're going to break up into groups of four and each student must come up with choreography to a song.  I can see that it is potentially fun because it's cool to see how differently each person interprets music with their body, but it's, it's, it's. . . . choreography.

"If you can hear the inaudible, think the unthinkable, see the invisible, believe the incredible, you can do the impossible." 

I once attended a cattle call for dancers at Disneyland in L.A. A cattle call is when anyone is welcome to apply. I danced woefully badly because one of the qualities needed for professional success as a dancer is to pick up dance steps quickly. I never did pick up steps quickly. I can learn them well. I can make them my own. But I need time and I have never been able to do it fast. Man, we danced across this mondo humongous auditorium and let me say this about that - the walk back to my seat after a very public failure was the farthest, longest walk of my life.

After I get 60 minutes of songs memorized I'll have a base to add to and change around. I can do it. I can do it. I can do it.

Get well!

I think of April and wonder how she is.  She has the best care possible and I pray the Great Physician heals her perfectly and completely.  The angel said to Mary, "With God, ALL things are possible." I can hear him, Gabriel, in my head.

"If you can hear the inaudible, think the unthinkable, see the invisible, believe the incredible, you can do the impossible." 

Oooh.  That's just a saying, but I heard that too.  In my head.  It's in a big, strong voice.  I've been yelling like a Marine, "SIR.  Yes, SIR!"  this evening.  I might be annoying my husband with it a little. I hope none of the neighbors complain.  Maybe that's why everything is in a big, strong voice tonight.

I feel happy now!

Get well, April.  Don't take too many meds (I know you won't).  Walk around when you can.  Drink.  Eat fruit.  Sit outside if it's nice.  Dream good dreams.  Put your faith in the Lord.  He has good plans for you. Hear it?  Jeremiah 29:11---> "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."

Yeah.  I'll take some of that too!

Friday, June 18, 2010

I short. I'm SHORT.

I signed up at the gym last night and thought they were having aerobics but it was yoga.  It was a great class.  My abs are sore today. I was the only student.  When I was attending a year ago the gym was busier.  I wonder where everyone went.  They only have aerobics once a week now.  Mondays.  Step aerobics.  I'm going to go and not use the step.  The step slowly kills my feet and knees. It doesn't happen right away.  It's subtle.  Devious.  Once it hurts then it hurts for months.

Got my new pants yesterday.  Rushed to try them on and was so disappointed that I didn't look like the model.  Unfortunately, a 5'1" person cannot look like a 5'9" person in pants.  My husband loved them on me, but I was a little blue.  They're hipster pants and they go only 1.5" or 2" below my belly button.  That model had miles and miles of tummy showing below her belly button and looked so pretty.  Not that I planned on wearing a crop top and showing my tum, but all my tops are long.  In fact the fashion is long tops so all of mine completely cover up the detailing at the waist.  I may as well be wearing plain black pants and save a lot of money if the pink and white and the drawstring doesn't show.

I shopped last night online for a shorter top and found a couple possibilities.  I neatly folded the pants the way they came, using the same creases, and put them back in their package thinking 50/50 I might return them today.  They are very well made and the supplex/lycra fabric has absolutely fantastic holding power.  I wondered how those girls keep their behinds from shaking like jello.  It's the pants!  The pants make you look really firm.  I need pants like this for my entire body.

But during the night, my great thinking time, I got a bright idea.  I remember the girls in dance would bunch their shirts up at the side or back and put a band on it.  I put on my pants and tried it with one of my tops and it worked!  Yay.  It doesn't ride up, yet is cute.  Success.  Problem solved.  I still will order a top or two to see if I can get two tops to go with the pants for variety.

Baz Luhrmann says don't read fashion magazines.  They will make you feel ugly.  And take care of your knees he says.  You'll miss them when they're gone.  I never appreciated how important they are till recently. 

Son is taking the semester test for life science.  I hope he does well.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Horse dreams

I'm getting good at grooming Bella. Son gave her a bath about three weeks ago and washed the winter season away and that one bath has made such a difference. When I brush her now I can get the white very white. I brought all my grooming tools home and cleaned them yesterday.

We bought 100 bales of hay for her this week and unloaded them too.  Above is a picture of 100 bales.  I have a bruise on my thigh from trying to carry a bale on my side like Leah. Here I am jogging and Zumba-ing and I was huffing and puffing carrying this hay. Leah wasn't fazed. She wasn't even breathing heavily. Sheesh.

Son has trained Bella so well that when I was washing her foot today she picked it up for me. Sweet little thing, she is.

We'd like, ideally, to buy 80 more bales. Cecilio said that 180 bales would be enough for one year, but I don't think we have a place to store 80 more. That's too bad.

Tonight husband said maybe sometime he will buy me a horse. I was so surprised! Completely surprised. I don't know if it could ever really happen, but it's nice to think it's possible. It gives me nice dreams. I love to think of Bella's body and brushing her. I bought her some fly spray called Endura and I hope it's effective. It should be delivered next week. The flies are so pesky and land on her eyes. I don't like that. She's perfect when I wipe her eyes with a cloth now. It's a part of my grooming routine that she wasn't crazy about at first. She'd swish her head around. Now she stands perfectly.

She's a little depressed though. Her friend, Bailey, and her mom got moved. The pasture is supposed to get planted but the man has still not come to do it. Bella only has mean Dancer next to her and Dancer's baby. Bella and the baby like each other but that darn Dancer has nipped Bella's behind twice now.

I wash Bella's water barrel once or twice a week. As soon as we put her back in her corral area the first thing she does is drink. She loves fresh water. She knows we love her. I cleaned Dancer's two water barrels today too.

I'm going to bed and will dream a dream of my own horse someday. I still haven't gone riding. That's a bit dorky. I'm putting the dreaming ahead of the experiencing. Even if it never happens, we have Bella. Everyone says we spoil her. No, we love her.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Don't think I'll ever be a manager

The other day we were working in the Visitor's Center and a senior couple drove up to the window and asked to purchase an annual day use pass. I was at the window and explained that it will take a few minutes to do this and to avoid causing a back-up at the entrance, please make a u-turn, park, and come inside to buy the pass.

The man made a u-turn all right. He drove up to the window again the wrong way! Whaaat? I look out the window and screamed (not a long scream, a short scream) and hurriedly told him to continue forward, turn left, follow the road and re-enter the park. He drove off, I turned around and said, "Did you just see that?"

My husband rolled his eyes and said, "Oh, you handled that well." He's always Mr. Cool Toes in situations. He's never screamed except for once in 2005 in Alaska in our first trailer when the water suddenly turned ice cold and he was in the shower.

Drivers are crazy! It's a lucky thing there was no oncoming traffic.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


Oh dear.  The mom who was supposed to hand out flyers and take care of publicity for our big 4-H breakfast fundraiser didn't do anything.  She forgot.  This is a bad thing.  We got there this morning at 6:30am and Leah and Kelly were already there.  The kids worked and we moms worked (I worked the least) and earned $20.00 more than was spent on all the breakfast food and plates and cups and stuff.

Eldest son phoned and it was pure joy to talk to him.  His job is going well.  The wife and babies and mom-in-law are doing well.  And I blurted out that I have an apology to give him.  I told him about when he was 12 and he was hungry for lunch and I didn't feel like making him a sandwich, but my husband told me to make one for him.  I did and I did it with a mean, hateful heart, and tossed the peanut butter and jelly sandwich on the table in front of him.  I may have made him cry.  I used to be so bad about preparing food because I never wanted to do it.  Over the years I've improved, thanks be to God who caused me to see myself as I am and also thanks to the example my husband has been.  My husband has always made food with love.  I've tried hard to be more like him in this way.  So tonight I said I was sorry about it and eldest son said, "I'm not scarred, Mom.  I don't even remember it."  He's such a guy! And then he said he's noticed that as people get older and they have time to reflect on the past (and he kindly said, he's not saying that I'm old, haha!) he said they tend to remember the bad memories.  I asked if he got that from his psychology classes and he said, nope, it's just him talking.  It is true.  It's true for me.  I wonder if it's true for others.

Tonight I'm thinking of what Jesus said, “The mouth speaks out of that which fills the heart” (Matt. 12:34).  Confession is no use without repentance.  I don't know if I can take too much of seeing myself as I really am though.

Next week I'm signing up at the gym for yoga and some kind of cardio class.  I have to or else the girly girls at Zumba will hurt me bad!  My two month prep plan was to work-out on my own one month and then join the gym one month before my Zumba class.  I read one student said she thought she was going to leave her bladder on the floor during the certification class.  Hahaha!  Last year when I went to the belly dancing week-end workshop I was working out at the gym and during a killer samba routine I was one of the few students keeping up.  So.  I think I should follow the same plan since it worked once already.  I do jogging every other day.  It's 1.5 mile fast walking (I get lost in my thoughts and slow down way too often), one mile jog, .5 mile walk.  It's brutal every time.  I don't like it one bit, but afterward I feel good.  Accomplished.  

We're back in the 90s and it's beautiful here.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Cute pants I hope

My husband was gone for two days. Everything was fine while he was gone. No emergencies or breakdowns which is good because he took the truck and if there was an emergency I'd have no transportation.  We have good neighbors though. Our son was a great help to me and I told him he reminded me of the character of Travis in one of my favorite books, Old Yeller. When Travis' dad leaves the family to go to Abilene, Travis takes on all of his father's responsibilities and does a good job too. What would I do without him? I don't know. We stayed up late because we couldn't sleep well with husband gone. I accidentally made up a funny voice and couldn't stop using it and made son laugh and laugh till midnight.

We are all together again and it is good.

The graham crackers were calling me from the kitchen cupboard to our bedroom very loudly last night. I lay in bed trying to distract myself by listening to my iPod. Milk said, "Get up and come to the refrigerator.  I'm cold and delicious. Pour a tall glass and have only one graham cracker." My tummy grumbled. Of course the milk knows I never, but never, eat only one graham cracker. I finally fell asleep. Go me!

Ordered a pair of pants for Zumba. I hope they fit well.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

A day

There was a huge sandstorm for about an hour yesterday. Husband left the truck windows cracked so sand got all inside the truck. He left the awning down for shade while we were gone to the laundromat so when we got home it was ripped and partly folded. Our front door blew open because someone, who hereby shall remain unnamed but it wasn't me, didn't close the door properly. The air conditioner was running - cooling down the outside world. Husband did considerable yelling.

After I looked everything over and sat down I said, "Well, nothing was stolen. It could be worse." So to me, much relieved, as long as all we did was cool the outside for awhile and rip the awning, why get in an uproar. Repair cost for the awning will cause some pain. But overall, it'll be all right.

The 4-H meeting was pretty good. I need to look up parliamentarian procedures because the kids are supposed to be using parliamentarian procedures and I don't know how to do it, but I know they're not doing it. I need to buy a gavel for our 4-H president. I like him a lot. He's a neat kid. I'm going to have a private talk with one of our boys who laughed and goofed off during Pledge of Allegiance - and he was leading the pledge. I think we should have him do it again and do it right and respectfully. I spoke with a 4-H grama who sat next to me. Her son was in Afghanistan then sent to Iraq where he died during his second tour. She told me he was killed by a roadside bombing. So far from home and love. She didn't cry and I tried not to. So I'm gonna share this with the young man and I believe it'll make an impression on him. During the meeting something came up. I forget what it was now, but I said, "That's anti-American." I wonder if that's why she told me about her boy. I'm a flag waver for sure. Her name is burned on my brain. Sandra. I never remember names, but I'll remember Sandra.

Monday, June 07, 2010


It's still hot. A little too hot. Inside our trailie we can only keep it in the mid-80s when it gets over 100 outside. They should have built this size trailer with 50 amp, but it only has 30 service. The breaker did trip once yesterday while we were out. Yesterday was a record 104°. It was 104° in 1996. I want to break the record not equal the record. I like hot weather but over 100° is too muchy. Our truck thermometer said 108°. Anyhoo, it's warm again. The week-end was uneventful. Today we're homeschooling and then going to the laundromat at 3:00pm. We have 4-H meeting tonight at 6:00pm.

Saturday, June 05, 2010

Zumba routines

Brand new blog category.  I will list the choreography links that I like best and that I'm learning.  This is the result of hours of searching for steps I like.

Normally, I would never have considered getting certified in Zumba because 1) I'm not a natural leader and, 2) living in a rural area would normally make it hard to obtain fresh dance moves.  But if I want to Zumba, and not alone, I will have to be the one to teach it.  Small town and no one else is doing it. 

Praises to YouTube and the wonders of information shared on the internet!  Instructors are only too happy to create and share their wonderful music selections and fun dance steps they've put together. Also, Zumba sends DVDs with new choreography to its members every two months.  These two factors mean that even though there's no dance studio here and the closest city is 70 miles away, I can attend the instructor certification class and then continue learning dances on my own from the Zumba DVDs and the YouTube community.  Way cool.

My favorites:

"Kuliquitaca" by Tony Rosario choreographed by the Merengue Sisters.  Got it memorized and it's my favorite one of all.  Very fun to do. My daughter-in-law speaks Spanish fluently and she said the beginning of the song he speaks of his love for his country and the rest. . . . is gibberish. Cracked me up. I told her I couldn't find any English translation. No wonder.

Tanya's video  This is the most viewed of all Zumba videos.  She's got Latin dance in her blood I'd say and interacts beautifully with her class.  I've memorized the first song, Shakira's "Hips Don't Lie" and almost all of the third song "Mueve La Colita"  The literal translation of colita is "little tail" so it's saying move your little behind.  I'm gonna substitute plain hand clapping for the spanking movement. I think she looks good doing the little spanking part, but the rest of us would look lame. I've seen it done badly and it's pretty sad to see. If you're gonna be cool, be all the way cool, but if you ain't got it, face it. I'm not too proud to admit I am not as cool as Tanya.

Lola's Cumbia Celtica I love to watch the girl to the right of Lola.  Also love her shoes.  Must have the shoes.  The hips in the forward walking section are taking me the longest to learn.  Takes some finesse to get the hips going with the shoulders and take 8 small steps forward all at the same time all in unison.  lol!

Courtney Sajben's choreography for "Say hey, I love you" by Michael Franti.  I heard this song on the radio last week.  Checked to see if anyone used it for Zumba and, voila!, found Courtney's video.  I was attracted to this vid because I like her "Say hey" arm wave and the forward walking "window washing" arm movement.  Cute and cool.

So this is five songs, fast ones.  I need a warm-up, a cool down, plus three more.  They say a one hour Zumba class consists of about ten songs.

I'm finding that, for example in Lola's cumbia, a dance actually requires a bit less energy after I memorize it.  In learning a dance, I expend more energy trying to keep up, correcting myself when I do it wrong, comprehending the movement, and cataloging it in my brain.  Catching up when I've executed the steps wrong takes up energy.

Hot, hot, hot

It's hot.  Outside temp is 96ยบ and it's only noon.  We're hoping our trailie a/c will handle the load okay.  If not, small possibility we'd have to rent a house or apartment for the summer.  I pray it doesn't come to that.

I'm pleased with my new route.  I found that I can take a park trail almost all the way to the city's newly paved multi-use path. I read sand is good to run in, but my ankles like the paved path better.  So.  Asked husband to measure the distance and the path I jogged last night is one mile and the park trail is .5 mile.  That means I walk jogged three miles and of that jogged one mile.  Oooohweee.  For me, that's good.  I waited till the sun was almost down because it'd be crazy to run in the sun.  They have some cute three level water fountains on the path: tall for adults, small for children, and low to the ground for dogs.  Cute!  But they're not turned on yet.

I'm practicing my Zumba routines every day.  I figure it'll give me a head start so I can teach a class as soon as possible after I get certified.  YouTube is a gold mine.  A friend here got a Zumba CD to get ready for when I'm certified and she said she told her friends I'll be teaching.  It kinda pumped me up.  Then even better, whilst I was running the multi-use path yesterday a rig drove by and honked at me.  He did the honkity, honk, honk, HONK HONK, tune.  Well, that inspired me to run the whole mile and hold my stomach in real hard.  I found a very good running bra at Wal-Mart - two for $11.00.  It's better than the more expensive ones I bought at the mall.  My sister told me about them.  She's always telling me about good products.  She's a shopaholic.

Son is out playing at a friend's house.  My husband came home and said the friend said to tell me that he's playing baseball tonight at 7:00pm and I can come take pictures if I want.  Haha!  That's a hint if ever I heard one.  I should go tonight.  He's a sweet kid and I do like him and his family.

Overall, I feel exceedingly well.  Last week was a bad week.  I didn't even realize I was peri-menopausal premenstrual.  Fun combination to be sure.  My husband commented that I was very quiet and I told him it was because I was afraid of what I might say!  It's a little funny now, but last week it wasn't funny.  I can hear somebody chewing and feel like I'm gonna implode and I have to make myself say nothing because nothing nice will come out of my mouth if I let it.

Thursday, June 03, 2010


June, June, beautiful June.  Summer is my favorite season.

I've decided I hate the software that came with my Panasonic camera.  I can't even delete a photo while viewing it. Asks me if I want to download photos.  Duh, yes I do.  Have to click about four times to close the program.  Do I want to exit?  Duh, yes I want to exit. It's really dumb software.  The software developer should be pilloried.  I'm downloading the Panasonic photos using Windows from now on.

Our friend's daddy died Sunday.  He was in hospice. Our friend is very distressed and has been for some time.  Now he is emotionally distraught I think.  Worn to a frazzle from being primary caregiver, decision maker, a son, an only child.  Both of his folks are gone now.  I feel so bad for him and his family.

A nice geologist died here in the park on Tuesday morning.  They found him lying on the sand.  He had been on our loop and moved to the beach.  He gave a couple army men to our son.  His adult son visited with him the night before.  He passed on so quick and sudden.  None of us can know how long we have here on Earth.  It's the third death for the parks this year - a high number and summer has not even begun.  One man, about in his 50s, fell into the water perhaps of a heart attack.  The last death, a drowning, was one of two young men in a canoe.  The canoe tipped over.  One man made it to shore.  The other didn't - the one who had been drinking.  I'm amazed that alcohol can affect your swimming so much.  I guess it makes them make bad decisions or could it be that he wasn't coordinated enough.  I don't know.  Rangers have to pull the bodies out of the water and one of them took about three weeks to surface.  I don't want to think about that!

My hair is down to 47.5 inches.  Sometimes the knees look close and sometimes they look far.  I'm having to wash much more from sweating so much.  Get sweaty and dirty taking care of Bella and get sweaty from Zumba work-out and or jog/walking in 90+ degree weather.  I found a new song I'm gonna probably use.  It's the "Peanut Butter Jelly Time" rap song.  Too funny.

Matthew says in Matt. 10:16.  " ye therefore wise as serpents, and harmless as doves."  I'm navigating potentially dangerous waters choosing my music for Zumba dance.  I am in the world, but not of it.  My Zumba class will be different from the rest.  No profanity in the lyrics.  No flagrant sexual content.  Wonder if I can slip in a Christian rap song like "Feelin' So Fly" by TobyMac.  Using the kids' slang, that would be really sick.  Hahaha!