Wednesday, April 30, 2014

The Nesbitt

Back in January Monte announced that he knew what he wanted for his birthday

which is in February.

He briefly explained that he wanted a bracelet for fitness

or something.

What I heard was one of those bands that was supposed to keep you from falling down.

Which I am not even sorry to say is flat out stupid.

After several more explanations that it was not, in fact, a stupid so-you-won’t-fall-down bracelet,

he told me it was called a Fitbit,


which I could never remember,

and felt it was awkward to say,

so I started referring to it as a Nesbitt.

Not that I am AT ALL equating Monte wanting a rubber bracelet with Buzz Lightyear losing his arm, going a bit “bat crazy”, wearing a woman’s hat and calling himself Mrs. Nesbitt after a bit too much Darjeeling tea.


You are supposed to wear this Nesbitt like a watch and it monitors how many 

steps you take, 

calories you burn, 

miles you walk, 

stairs you climb 

and how restful your sleep is.

 Monte would roll over in the middle of the night, 

hit the button on the side of the Nesbitt, 

which illuminated the entire room with an eerie blue light, 

to see if he was getting enough restful sleep.

He was constantly telling me how many steps he took in a day.

When he didn’t get in what he thought was enough, 

he’d walk around the house until he did.

Which was confusing to the dog.

Who thought it was some really boring, 
repetitious game.

He ended up buying the Nesbitt for himself for his birthday

(once I found out it was over $100)

and gave it to himself early.

So for the past 4 months I have gotten daily reports on Monte’s wellness via the Nesbitt.

He synced it to the computer and everything.

Monte can get a wee bit overly excited about new technology.

He’s no early adapter (thank goodness) 

and he’s never camped out in line in front of an Apple store before 
a new something or other has been released.
(SUPER thank goodness!)

But his seemingly growing dependence on the reports from this little rubber bracelet was baffling and let’s be honest, annoying to me.

But he could be doing WAY worse things
 than being concerned about his health.

He could be growing a handlebar mustache,
planning for a zombie apocalypse,
wearing skinny jeans
or playing video games for hours every night.

I got a text from Monte last week while he was out of town on business that he lost his Nesbitt.

He was able to log onto his computer and see when the last “beam me up Scotty” transmission was.

7:45 am.

He figured he was just walking into the office. He looked all over the parking lot.

Even under cars.

He looked all over the office and had others help.

No Nesbitt.

He was sad.

I should have suggested some 
Darjeeling tea over the phone.

Once he was back home from the trip, he got a call that his Nesbitt had been found,

this past Monday,

in the parking lot of the office building.

That means the Nesbitt potentially sat in that parking lot for 5 days,

getting rained on,

possibly run over

and who knows what else.

I mean, maybe even an unsuspecting guy picked the Nesbitt up thinking it was his,

only to try it on later at home realizing that all the information on the Nesbitt was not his.

It was a strange Nesbitt belonging to someone else.

And he’d had it on his wrist!

So maybe this man,

this poor freaked out “I-didn’t-mean-to-steal-your-Nesbitt” possible man, 

took it back to the parking lot he found it in Monday morning 

and discreetly tossed it on the ground hoping that whoever lost it would be on the lookout for it.

Heaven forbid he take it to Lost & Found or anything.

It’s the revenge of The Pants With No One Inside Them!

Click on the link above
if you are lost.

“I said I was sorry he lost his Nesbitt.
In the parking lot with no one inside it.
I said and said and said I’m sorry,
I said it but I lied it."

**When pulling up an image of the Nesbitt, the website said this version was no 
longer being sold because of a voluntary callback due to rashes and a faulty snap.**

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

What Would I Really Wish For?

Today is World Wish Day.

Did you forget too?

I really am not one to make wishes. 

I much prefer to put my hope in things with power, like prayer.

But what would I wish for if I had some sort of "run-in” 
with Aladdin’s Genie in a bottle?

Off the top of my head, I’d probably wish that I didn’t eat that enormous dill pickle with lunch yesterday since my fingers became swollen.

And I’d REALLY wish that I didn’t watch “Real Steel” with Monte Sunday night 
because I CRIED at the end.

It’s about fighting robots, people!

Clearly, I’m hormonally imbalanced.

I could take a different approach and go all Amy Grant in the song, “Grown Up Christmas List” and wish for war to end and for everyone to have a friend.

I could go Pharrell Williams and wish to be “Happy”.

You know how I love that song.

I could go broad and and wish for good health for my family and friends.

I could wish for a money tree to grow in my backyard right next to my beloved Sycamore so that we could be full-time givers.
I could really go for all the nooks and crannies of my house to be cleared, cleaned and organized.

I’d certainly wish to be a published author.

And for some of the issues we are having dealing with the school to be resolved quickly and painlessly.

But I have to say,

this isn’t my first rodeo.

I know that war, however brutal, can be necessary to end heinous things like the holocaust and terrorist acts like 9/11.

I know that even though it is miserable to experience and even worse to watch, friends come and go for a reason. Sometimes personal growth can only come with separation.

I know that good health isn’t a guarantee--for anyone. And how we choose to handle it is one of God’s greatest lessons.

I know that money can’t buy happiness. And great creativity is born out of finding and making beauty with limited resources. And giving out of our “little" means so much more than giving out of our “lots”.

I know that the only way to get organized is to roll up my sleeves and do it myself:  one nook and cranny at a time. [sigh]

I know that unwritten books don’t get published. But practice and practice and practice improves technique. And rejection polishes it.

I know that conflict can bring about important character traits. Patience only comes from being in situations that require it. Compassion comes from putting ourselves in another’s position. True change comes from the slow baby steps while holding someone’s hand rather than the fast leaps that can sometimes knock others down.

I know all this,

but don’t always remember it.

So what’s the harm in wishful thinking?

Monday, April 28, 2014

Table Decorating Ideas for a Women’s Luncheon

Every year our church does a women’s luncheon in the spring where women can sign up to decorate a table.

I love seeing all the different creative table decorations.

This year I did a 50s Diner theme:

I used record albums for chargers and Coke glasses that I already had. I gave each person a Coke to take home in a real glass bottle. Just like my grandfather had delivered to his house by the case each month.

In fact, that yellow wooden Coca-Cola crate is one of the crates the Cokes were delivered in. I use it on a small table top as an end table in my den.

I painted CDs with chalkboard paint and used chalkboard markers to color in the center of the “records” and write “The Diner”.

I borrowed a big parfait looking vase from Sumita and filled the bottom with turquoise gum balls I found at Target.

I made the top of the float out of a Styrofoam ball with fake carnations stuck in. 
I added a red rose to look like the cherry on top. And of course a paper straw.

I used my Waffle House mugs too.

This table really was my grandfather. 

Carisa sitting by the sweet mother of the girl singing.
I love the look on her face watching her daughter sing.

View from my table watching Julie hold her precious little step-grandson
(if that is even how you’d say it).

McDaniel decorated a table this year.
She wanted to do a peach theme since she was born in Atlanta.

And she loves drinking out of mason jars so she knew she wanted to incorporate them as well.

And coral. She had to have coral.

McDaniel placed a peach at each place setting with a card saying, 
“You’re a peach” stuck inside with a toothpick.

It was tough finding peaches in Ohio in April.
Here is a peek at the other tables:

Julie’s amazing bird themed table.

She sprayed painted twigs this gorgeous light blue.

Look at the bling hanging from the branches.

Monte saw it and said, “Is it a Frozen theme?”

Poor guy, living with all us women.

My favorite part was the handwritten scriptures written on birds at each place setting.

Each scripture was different. And each had to do with birds. 

Look at the table runner on this spring-themed table. The hostess hot glued fake leaves from a floral bouquet together and ironed them flat. Brilliant!

Don’t you love that she also put out seed packets?
Makes me want to go out and start digging in my
garden. Except it’s raining. And isn’t there some
rule about planting before Mother’s Day?
 She also put a potted flower in tea cups. I just love that!!

Music themed table. Even the confetti sprinkled on the table were musical notes, treble and bass clefs.

I never got to ask what musical instrument that is in the
center of the table. But it sure looks like something
Biblical that David played. 
 I love the color on this table. And the white chocolate crosses were a nice touch. 

Look at this! This woman is an interior designer and boy, does it show. 
I look forward to her tables every year.

This is such a peaceful table with all the calming green. 

I love those antler candle holders!

Oh my word, this next table was just too awesome! This was decorated by one of the wives of a Columbus Clippers baseball player.

Sumita hosts a Clippers family to live in their basement (set up like an apartment with a full kitchen and door to the outside and everything) each season.

She leads a bible study for the wives and really becomes an important part of the lives of these women who are living a very nomadic life during the baseball season following their husbands city to city often with little ones in tow. Just being in Sumita’s home gives them a sense of normalcy.

The baseballs in the vase, peanuts and box of
Cracker Jacks at each place setting was just awesome!

Many of the baseball wives came to the luncheon and sat at the table. They were so beautiful!

The decorator of this amazing table, cut the hides off of baseballs to wrap around the napkins as holders! You could smell the leather when you got near the table.

I approached the decorator of this table and said something like, “I love your balls!” which Sumita’s oldest daughter, Sara, overheard.

She just shook her head.

I need to think before I speak a lot more often.

This table had hearts all over it with handwritten reminders of who God is.

Patriotic table. I just noticed how the napkins were folded like a flag. Nice touch!

Even though the tables were fun to look at, talk about and take pictures of, the real reason we were at the luncheon was to hear from a speaker.

This year the speaker was Alyssa, Sumita’s youngest daughter. Just 19 years old.

She spoke about her recent health problems that forced her to drop out of her freshman year at college so she could have surgery. She spoke about her constant pain and how the doctors aren’t quite sure why that is still happening.

Alyssa spoke about how real God has become to her through this. How He gave her scriptures in quiet moments saying that she was being summoned by Him to this situation. How he loved her and cared for her and was in complete control.

The friend sending next to me who is a breast cancer survivor, turned to me wide-eyed and said God had given her those scriptures too when she was deep in her battle.

Alyssa talked honestly about being angry. Being scared. How she gave God deadlines for healing.

And then how she completely surrendered.

At 19. 

It was a wonderful message given by an articulate girl wise beyond her years.

I thank God for his faithfulness to her. 

And ask for your prayers for Alyssa as she still battles daily pain.

Does your church do anything like this luncheon?

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

I Want Candy…?!


Right after Easter?

No, I did not buy Big Binks for McDaniel.
This was a wishful thinking photo.

Did you know that TODAY is National Jelly Bean Day??

My favorite jelly bean colors.
I think that means I should be getting a big bag for free 
since I MUST be their product’s biggest supporter 
(except for the past few months when I took a break--
which probably showed up in a dip in sales).

The knowledge that it is National Jelly Bean Day has inspired me to write about my favorite candies.

 I know how deeply you must care about my candy desires.

My Top 10 Favorite Candies

1. Jelly Beans. Duh. But they must be your run of the mill jelly beans. Not jelly bellies or gourmet or tropical flavors or Jolly Rancher brand. Just jelly beans. I eat only 3 colors and in this order:  white, pink and then purple. [See picture above]. Monte only eats the green, yellow and orange. So we never fight over beans (and that would be a completely justifiable fight.) But we do always end up with a bowl of black and red beans to toss. 

2.  Candy Corn. It is always a happy day when I see the first bag of candy corn being put out in late summer. 

Hello, old friend!
My girlfriend got us a candy corn shaped basket to house our stash 
that remains out from September through November. 

Another girlfriend got me a candy corn necklace that I wear with pride.

Candy corn necklace selfie.

3. Laffy Taffy. This is usually just a traveling candy. Meaning we only buy it when we are on road trips. The not-funny jokes printed on each wrapper are good time passers and more times than not, I can guess the answers. Which says a lot about my sense of humor.

Pick Your Plum, which I’ve mentioned before, is a great website of discount products and they always include a Laffy Taffy in their packaging.

Well, when I recently received the metal monogram I had ordered, there was NO Laffy Taffy!

Cool monogram but Laffy Taffyless.

I expressed my concern to Julie who had also ordered a metal monogram. She sent me this picture to assure me it was JUST ME and they had not abandoned their Laffy Taffy-in-every-package policy.

Julie’s finger pointing all cocky at her Laffy Taffy.

 It must’ve been an oversight. 
If it happens again, I will send a desperately worded email. 

4. Werther’s chewy caramels.  

Yes, just the chewy ones. I have a fear of choking on hard candies and being alone when I am choking on hard candies and then having to rush around, without air, looking for something to ram my diaphragm into so I could expel the hard candy from my air passageway. To avoid all this, I stick with chewy candies.

5.  Reese’s Pieces.  

But only if we have vanilla ice cream. I am not one to just eat Reese’s Pieces plain like E.T. Not sure I can really expound on why but they need vanilla ice cream.

6.  Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups. 

Only if they are mini and only if they are frozen. Since I don’t like chocolate, freezing them makes the chocolate flavor more acceptable to me. I prefer they be mixed with vanilla ice cream too.

7. Gum Drops. 

I love the holiday gum drops that are shaped like bells that come out at Christmas time. They come in three flavors:  white, red and green. Again, I am only a white and red fan and Monte eats the green. Except this past holiday season I noticed that I got an excruciating headache every time I ate the red bells. What is up with that?! So now I am only a white bell eater. 

8. Peppermint Nougats.

I love these so much! 

My grandmother always kept a fancy candy dish of these out at Christmas. I don’t think I fully cultivated my love of them until I was an adult. We all love these--including the girls. FYI:  read the packaging closely so you don’t make the horrible mistake of bringing home 2 bags of spearmint nougats. They will make you wipe your tongue with a paper towel.

9.  Saltwater Taffy. 

I do love various flavors of taffy like vanilla, blueberry and caramel. The kind you can get at a bulk candy store, not the kind in a box from a souvenir shop on vacation. Unless you enjoy going to the dentist and getting a crown replaced.

10. Gum balls.

I know, I know, I jacked up my jaw and shouldn’t chew gum anymore. But I don’t everyday like I used to. Colorful gum balls are a rare treat for me. Last summer, I helped Sumita with her daughter’s graduation party and she had these blue and silver gum balls in large glass vases. 

Oh my goodness, the blue ones were amazing! 

As much as I like gum balls, Monte LOVES them. Until earlier this year when the glass dome got “mysteriously" broken, Monte had his own gum ball machine. Truth be told, and not by Monte, the glass dome was broken because he kept sticking his hand inside the too-small opening at the top of the dome instead of putting in a coin to get the gum as God intended. 

Anway, Carisa, Juan, Monte and I were sitting at a table in Sumita’s back yard at the graduation party, chewing on blue gum balls watching Monte spit a piece out, hurl it into the woods behind the house and pop in another. Carisa and I just kind of shrugged and did the same thing. 

More than once. 

Those blue gum balls lose their flavor fast.

A few days later, Sumita’s husband, Mark,  found all our bright blue already-chewed gum wads that didn’t make it as far into the woods as we thought. 


What’s your favorite candy?

The Liebers

I Can't Make This Stuff Up

If I could, I wouldn't be so surprised when crazy things happen. And they do. All the time. Much to my surprise. We went o...