Monday, January 31, 2011

sigh. a snowy monday. it's actually kind of pretty out there. but the screensaver says it all, i guess.

i'm hoping this week will go quickly, as i have several unpleasant tasks to accomplish by week's end... seriously, i am so ready for something fun! last week, in a fit of selfishness, i ordered a 'stir crazy' from amazon. i am not saying that it's a great solution to winter (and certainly 'fun' is not a permanent solution to anything), but i have to admit, it is a pretty snazzy little kitchen gadget to have. word on the street has been that these are great 'go to' gift items, and i would have to concur.

as you can see however, i chose to gift myself at this particular time ;)) in case you wonder, only 1 T. of oil makes a whole batch of corn. must be more healthy than that chemically induced stuff that comes in the bag, no?

happy monday!

Friday, January 28, 2011

3 day weekend

i decided to give myself a 3-day weekend starting right now. actually, i don't have a ton to do, except for class prep for monday. i swear, i need to get out of the house today, and i am happy to see the sun peeking out.

plans include:
• hanging with Jesus
• hanging with His friend kristie, possibly (involves her leaving her house, also)...
• making shortbread
• making valentines
• making up my seed order

i've been anxiously waiting for this post for almost a month. i think the first seed catalogue rolled in the day after christmas. i have saved them, not looked at any of them except for a quick peruse.

the all-time best seed catalogue comes from baker creek. it's huge/oversized and the photos are phenom. they do only heirloom seeds, and they don't endeavor to only pick the 'heroes' for their photo shoots. although, they do shoot some weird specimens. can't you almost taste these pics?

they also make you want to try things you've never grown before.

sigh. big sigh of relief. this weekend, we get to kick january to the curb. that means only 2 short months until this frozen tundra goes away. i plan to use the time wisely, and live each day as fully as possible. but a little section of my brain is going to be reserved for THEN.

happy friday!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

no cancer!

yay God!! thanks to everyone who has been praying. one more surgery next week, but then we both should be 'good to go.'

And God said, “Let the land produce living creatures according to their kinds: the livestock, the creatures that move along the ground, and the wild animals, each according to its kind.”

And it was so.

God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds.

And God saw that it was good.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


a certain someone has decided that if she spends her entire day glued to my side, nothing bad like yesterday will ever happen again. i wish i could tell her that i am not the one with the power to make that so.

in quietness and rest

wow. i so had to get rid of that post with the weird puppy picture (to answer Cher, YES, they are real - go to facebook and search for 'boo'). i am at a loss these days to think of posts. yes, it always happens in january.

even when i decided to go take a pic of SOMETHING, i found my camera battery dead. sigh. nothing in january is as it should be, it seems.

life has been very INSULATED around here. i have not been outdoors much, and i cannot say i have done a whole lot. i sleep. i am in the slow period of work, and i am not feeling especially creative. i am back to teaching, and spending an inordinate amount of time thinking about it, even when i am not doing it. i am tired.

and yet, there is a strangeness to all of this. i have been seeking God more. i have determined to make Him the center, not the circumference (i like that analogy). it's been difficult to put into words how that decision is affecting my life. it's subtle, and mostly all internal so far. it has to do with peace, and a letting go. it's been quite comforting.

siesta had her biopsy yesterday. now, i just need to wait for a week or so to find out the results. it seems i'm always waiting for something, and peace has been very fleeting for me in waiting. God is working on that, too.

yesterday some of my scripture reading included this snippet from Isaiah 30:

For thus said the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel:
In returning and resting you shall be saved;
in quietness and in confidence shall be your strength.

i call it a snippet because if one goes on to read the whole of Isaiah 30, much of it is a rebuke to a people that have gone astray. Isaiah is like that as a book. not alot of middle ground. i guess that is why it is 'my' book, the book i love the most of all. i want to be like Isaiah, which is a fairly big aspiration, or at least one that seems the most outrageous of things to desire.

and in the midst of this bland month, i am turning to quietness and confidence more and more. the endlesseness of winter and of days is seeming not only bearable, but necessary. and mostly, like Isaiah, my vision of the One who has plans for his people is propelling me forward.

Monday, January 24, 2011

boo and friend

so, i haven't totally broken from facebook. it's hard to leave all your friends behind, take boo (little guy on the right) who has 792,602 followers, including me. that is probably more than oprah, even though she now has a sister to follow her also.

here is boo's new buddy. awwwwww. he's like a hippie version of boo :)

Sunday, January 23, 2011

the nudge

happy sunday everyone. the sun is shining brightly, slightly warming the temps to 2 degrees.

inside, i am warm today. i am feeling the results of an awesome morning, full of God and worship. it started out kind of peculiarly, as sometimes God moments do.

for the last month, i've been journaling to/with God in the morning as i do my morning devotions. at first, i was unsure of how to start. i did not want a bunch of chatter on the pages. so, i began to pray about it. sometimes, when i prayed, a single word or a small phrase would pop into my mind. i began to write these words down as a 'heading' whenever it happened. more than once, God used the word as a topic to minister to me about. to give you an idea, some of the words so far have been:




now, this has not happened every day. and every day has not been a painful word. but as i thought about it, how on earth does one get up and live their day when FAILURE is the first word that pops into their head? the experience has strengthened me to put my day before God, because my own mind is not to be trusted.

today's word was SURRENDER.

i was kind of excited to get that word. i want to be surrendering my life and will to God completely. so, i dug in and buzzed through my bible reading and 3 devotions. which were wonderful, but spoke nothing NOTHING about surrender. at least not that i could discern.

i rolled over, and considered going back to sleep for awhile. it's sunday, after all :)

as i lay there, i felt a nudge to get up and retrieve a book i bought a few weeks ago called 'the me i want to be' by john ortberg. i immediately decided not to read it, because i am sort of in this mindset not to be about me all the time. anyway, i had read the first few pages, but not much else.

i got up, opened the book, and found the chapter i was on called 'discover the flow.' as i reviewed the first few pages which spoke mainly about the holy spirit, i started to react. since i've been a christian, i believe i have had an awareness of the holy spirit, which i sometimes listen to and sometimes don't...the times when i've most wanted to tap into the spirit, i've had some trouble. so this teaching seemed both valuable and timely.

as i finished up the chapter (which among other things, compared the holy spirit's operating to a GPS, not really sure about that one) i did start to see why God brought me there...

" To live in the flow of the Spirit means doing what Jesus says. I will mess up alot. I am going to need his power. I know that, but I form the intention by saying to him, "God, with your help, as best I can, I will do what you say. I will give you my life, my time, my obedience."

Jesus is the only one with authoritative wisdom about how to live. He is the only one to bring about the possibility of forgiveness for your sin and mine. He is the only one to give any kind of realistic hope of conquering death. To all who approach him, he is a thirst-quencher, the life-giver, the Spirit-bringer. No matter how wrongly you have erred in the past (this is big for me) if you are sincerely ready to listen to and obey God, you do not have to worry about God being mad at you. He is not that kind of God."

oh boy. did i cry about that one. because i have been of a mindset lately that i have gotten so off course, so miserably off the path, that He must be mad. very mad, and ready to bring very serious consequences for which i am unprepared. what a wonderful gift He gives to let us know our crazy thinking is incorrect, and misjudges His character.

so, off to a good day. it was of no surprise whatsoever to find our church worship band playing the very best 'surrender' song out there! it's called 'the stand' from hillsong united, and is being done by michael w. smith in this rendition.

Friday, January 21, 2011

lying them down

whew. finally friday. i am always so relieved to get to this day, as it usually is an 'office' day for me, no meetings or outside distractions.

i should be working on the stack o' things i have to do, but i do keep thinking about other things. like the new bible study i'm doing.

it's called 'lies women believe' - and at first, i was not too excited about it. i was figuring it was just another christian self-help book that told us if we did things in the correct 1. 2. 3. order with Jesus, all would be well. sometimes, i am not so good at doing things in all the right order, and when i do, i find myself dug deeply in the pit of legalism, which is worse than just being screwed up :)

ha. anyway. God (so far) has been using the book, by showing me the ALL TIME, BIGGEST LIFE-LONG LIE that i fall for all the time! fear! as much as i have known the Word and its take on fear, i have never, ever successfully rid it from my day to day life. i get scared about everything, big or small.

the latest, biggest fear comes concerning my little fur friend. i think you guys know how much i love and treasure my siesta. she is just a great gift of comfort and joy at the end of my day, every day, as a single woman. i have a deep, deep love for animals, which has been there my whole life. i find they bring peace and 'rightness' to the world for me. it's really hard to express in words, but i guess i'll have to leave the rest to your imagination.

long story short, i had her vaccinations done on november 12th. several weeks later, i noticed a lump at the site of the injection. i brought her to the vet immediately, and found out there is usually not a problem, as most injection lumps disappear within 2 months. i have brought her back twice to have it checked, and as of today, it still exists.

words cannot describe how much afraid i have been that she might have cancer. 'the' cancer that i am afraid of is very rare, but apparently very real. i'm not going to even name it, or give it much more credence, because this post is not about the cancer or even the lump.

this post is about how God is using this experience as an OPPORTUNITY to illustrate to me how he is more powerful than fear. i tell ya, people, this is nothing short of amazing in my life. i cannot begin to illustrate the process, but it's been a combo of my own prayers and the Word, my new bible study about lies, and some teachings i've had that talks about the 'river of life' existing in my core, or belly.

see, the fear has always lived right there. on any given day, actually MOST days, of all of my 48 years, in some sense, i have lived with the fear IN THAT PLACE. and God, in his huge mercy, has begun to replace the fear with His Spirit. it hasn't happened automatically for me. i have had to approach Him and ask. however, it has worked to do that!!! wow, what a concept that to think that in all of the unknowns, the uncontrollables of this life, i can have PEACE.

yay God!!!!! people, this is monumental for me. i believe God is in-process to showing me that NOTHING, NO ONE or NO THING can separate me from Him, and His power and loving provision rests over me in ALL THINGS.

i am so very grateful. i wish the same for all of you, in whatever lies are most crippling in your life today. let's thank Him together, okay?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

souper month

wow, it's SO january right now, isn't it? so far, i'm doing okay, but i imagine the tantrums will begin soon. today there is a tiny bit of brightness that i am choosing to call sun peaking out. that will help.

anyway, i thought i would blog about beans today. not sure how most of you feel about beans! when i was a kid, nothing could make me gag more than thinking about having to eat a lima bean. or a red bean in chili. i used to fish them out and push them to the side of the bowl, because they were just gritty and weird. i did eat navy bean soup, probably because my mom cooked the daylights out of the beans, which made them not quite discernible.

these days, i still don't eat alot of beans. i like refried beans on occasion, with lots and lots of cheese, which probably cancels out their health benefits.

the one, ONE bean that wins my vote, though, is black beans. black beans are yummy. in the summer, i make a lovely bean/corn salad that i have blogged about before, i think.

last night, i made this recipe for black bean chowder. i got home, and did not feel like making dinner. however, this took about 5 minutes to throw together, and about 30 minutes to simmer. EASY!

i actually did not have chicken on hand, but i had some frozen shrimp. so i threw that in at the end. it was fabulous. but i'm sure if you skipped the shrimp and added chicken, that would be good, too. oh. and i put some cumin in. because black beans and cumin are yum-o together. oh. and i added some chopped green/red peppers instead of the jalapeno, because that is what i had.

so, feel free to adjust it a bit to your family. i swear, it is the kind of thing that can make you change your mind about beans :)

Black Bean Chowder

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 jalapeno pepper, diced
1 medium onion, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried basil
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
4 cloves garlic, mashed
2 14-oz. cans black beans
3 cups chicken stock
1 cup cooked, shredded chicken
1 cup frozen corn
1/2 pound cooked shrimp, cut into bite-size pieces

In a large soup pot, saute the jalapeno pepper, onion, and carrot in the oil for ten minutes or so until soft. Add dried spices and garlic and saute for another minute. Add black beans and chicken stock and bring to a boil, then turn down the heat and let simmer for 30 minutes. Add chicken and corn and heat through, then add shrimp and heat that through, too. Season with salt and lots of pepper and serve

Sunday, January 16, 2011

next big thing

one of the funnest (yes, i know it's not a word) part of fantasizing about the new iphone i'll be getting soon is figuring out what kind of covering to put on it.

there are a LOT of choices, from bright colors to woodgrain or leather-like options, or even a paul frank monkey. all of them look pretty fantastic from afar, actually :)

what to do, what to do!!!

i'll probably just get the cheapest, most easily accessible one, to be honest. but just thinking about it brings me a certain kind of pleasure.

ps. my pastor noted today that it seemed my blog was mostly concerned with aesthetic pleasure and comfort. not sure if this is the best day to be posting on iphone cases, but i guess it shows he is starting to know me better! ha.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

people i love

i love talking about people i love, don't you? just for fun, i'm going to tell you about my friend Brad today. he's a person i love....although he is not a person that i told when i stole these pictures off his facebook page ;)

he he.


here is brad. he looks different than when i met him. that was maybe 15? years ago. he was probably about 20 years old and i was, ahem, OLDER than him ;)

he was my intern. i'm not sure he was specifically assigned to be MY intern. but i pretended that he was. there was just something about him, even back then.

this is his lovely wife, julie. julie didn't exist when i met brad. well, she existed, but neither brad nor i knew it. for much of the time that i have known brad, he didn't know julie existed, but he really really WANTED her to magically appear. and then one day, she did!! i'm glad we both found out she is real. i'm especially glad for brad, cause now he and julie have 2 lovely kids and a life in minnesota. that makes me happy.

this is the reason that i am blogging about and thinking about brad/julie today. it's because they are in india for the month of january for brad's job at the great big red target company! he's an information architect now, which is quite a leap from 'bobbi's intern' actually.

it's also why i'm proud of him. and why i wanted to post and tell everybody i love him! ps. he doesn't know i have a blog, so this is just between us ;)

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

things i've done today

- printed out two syllabi and accompanying materials for class tonite (yikes
- signed into online network for teaching and set up 'virtual' classroom (yikes)
- signed up for quickbooks online, and opened it (yikes)
- upgraded my email account to a business edition (yikes)
- signed up for web hosting and tried to write down all the various passwords associated with it (yikes)
- checked my legalzoom account and noticed that my paperwork is almost ready (yikes)
- created a pdf with working form fields (yikes)

since when did i become a rocket scientist? where's the creativity, people?!


Tuesday, January 11, 2011

apples for everyone!

well, it's a big day out here in the boonies. finally, FINALLY we are getting the iphone!!


well, i don't have it yet. too bad i am a cheapskate ;)

Sunday, January 09, 2011

the big chase

i was lazy this morning and slept waaaaaay in. when i entered the kitchen for my daily coffee routine, siesta was solidly perched, ears up, facing the stove and i knew that the day had finally arrived. i have a mouse in the house.

here's how it all started. last summer i had a mouse in the garage. he was cute and i did not have the desire to kill him, so i let him stay.

then, this fall/winter i have noticed siesta spending an inordinate amount of time in the basement. ears up, staring at the freezer. finally a couple of weeks ago, i bought one of those big boxy 'no kill' mousetraps, which actually should be labeled 'no trap' because it has not offered up any mice.

so, it was only a matter of time.

what ensued as i was grinding coffee beans was hilarious. i heard a loud scuffle in the living room. i see the little feet and long tail running across the wood floor. siesta was right on it, and trapped it in the corner.

soon, she had her prey between her two front paws and looked at me like 'what the heck do i do now?'

seconds go by, mouse is free and running again. this time she actually picked him up with her mouth, tail hanging out the side, and started prancing around. i could not have been prouder than if she had graduated from college.

as i ran to the front door, hoping that she would complete the deed by actually bringing her catch outside, i heard more scuffling, and alas, the little rascal is free again.

at this point, i think perhaps a bit of peanut butter and the death penalty might be in the best interest of all of us.

Friday, January 07, 2011

another debacle

every once in awhile, graphic designers become famous. usually, it's for something bad that they have done. he he.

last year, it was the now infamous 'gap' logo that lasted about 3 days, when an outrage from the good public on facebook confirmed what we all knew, that it was UGLY.

yesterday, it was the starbucks in-house designers who made the news, when starbucks decided to go 'nike' on us, and delete the words, leaving only the stylized 'siren' as their brand. from what i can perceive, they did not change a single other element.

yikes. 783 news stories on this since yesterday!!! seriously, people, it's graphic design, not world hunger! i actually kind of think i would know where that cup came from without the words, but apparently not every one agrees!

what do you think?

ps. this was the funniest graphic that i saw yesterday. ha! very good thinking!

Wednesday, January 05, 2011


got my hair dyed brown yesterday...

it matches:

• my fleecey
• my glasses
• my eyes
• my age spots
• my attitude

sigh. i should have made a new year's resolution to like january more than this...

happy discovery

i just found out that my computer has a post-it note app.

so far, highlight of my day :)

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

new neighbors

one of the best parts about feeding birds is that you start to see all kinds of little creatures that you never noticed before. for the past week or so, i've seen a couple of little guys who look sort of like that photo....

the interesting part is then figuring out what you are looking at. there is a website that has been helping me out quite a bit because it specifies birds that live in SD....the list is pretty big, but there are good photos of each kind of bird found here.

it's part detective work, and part entertainment for me. i knew these little birds by my sunflower seed feeder looked mostly like sparrows, but had a beautiful mauvey-rose colored breast. not bright red, but kind of pinkish. they match my kitchen perfectly :)

i am prettty sure, after digging last night, that i have common house finches, which sometimes have red breasts. yay! they are sweet, shy little birds, and i hope they stay awhile because they are so pretty.

Monday, January 03, 2011

see ya FB!

so, i've gone a week without facebook now, and i am surprised how little i miss it. at first, i found myself automatically checking without even THINKING what i was doing. now, that's a bit scary.

after a couple of days, though, i seriously did not even think about it. for now, i'll leave my account up there, and check it once a week or so....unless that sucks me back in, then i will have to leave it for good.

so, if i usually see you over there, i will not miss you, because you are here ;) i was reading somewhere where someone pointed out that FB/twitter are just ways for people to tell other people how clever we are...making ourselves seem 'smart' or entertaining in a sound bite makes us feel good about ourselves... not sure that is totally ALL that FB is about, i have seen some people who seem to be using it for more important things, but alas, that little comment rung quite a bell with me.

the last thing i need in life is something that makes me think more about me and how clever i am :))

ha. so, hoping God fills my time with something more purposeful. i'll let you know how it goes!

Saturday, January 01, 2011

i resolve

well, it's THE day, isn't it? the day to start afresh, to dig in and become all that you really really really want to be! i should be feeling good about that, but 48 years of experience has taught me that i kind of suck at resolving to do, and then doing.

still, we were created with the capacity to begin anew. the Spirit inside me calls me to make a plan for 2011, and so, here is my list...

i resolve to:
• live one day at a time, with the abundant provision that i have for THAT day, and that day alone;
• live humbly, and realize that i am a sinful human with many, many deficiencies, yet created for a purpose for which i am given all the tools i need to achieve that very purpose;
• find joy and happiness in the life i have been given, struggles and adversity as well as blessings;
• make my number one priority to build relationship with One person, who has been waiting patiently for a looooooooong time for me to make Him #1 in my life;
• share myself as openly and transparently as possible in this place, while forgoing some of the lesser, more 'false' relationships i have been wasting time with (reality tv and facebook immediately spring to mind);
• practice stewardship on many levels, more than just time, talents, physical body, etc (my pastor is teaching a series on this right now, and it seems extremely relevant);
• stop striving for worldy gain. okay, this seems nearly impossible, but i am going to pretend i am a sparrow in a field :)
• be open to new things, new people, and new places, and see where the path God has me on continues to lead;
• practice a 'daily office' with God daily, not once or twice weekly....!
• be open to listening more;
• go forth humbly, with great sincerity, with expectation, and with hope for good.

:) happy new day, everyone! i hope today is a good day for your resolutions, whatever they may be!