Thursday, January 29, 2009

I'm SO glad I have holes in my head!

One small drawback to traveling all over the country is elevation--and the changing thereof.

Elevation of my most recent "homes."
Mobile, AL: 16 feet
Amarillo, TX: 3,607 feet
Louisville, KY: 462 feet
So what's the problem you ask? Take a look at a few of my bottled goods.When we leave a place like Mobile (16 ft.) and travel to Amarillo (3607 ft.) the air trapped inside the bottles is dense, thus puffing the bottles up like a bunch of labeled puffer fish. Sometimes the air pressure inside the bottles is so much greater than the thin Amarillo air that the cleaners are actually pushed out through the spray tubes. I wind up with puddles of cleaners in my cabinets when I get home.
Then, when we leave Amarillo and drop to a place like Louisville (462 ft) the denser air outside the bottles pushes against the thin air inside so that the bottles cave in, as you can see in the photo above. When I try to use the cleaners, a vacuum forms and I have to open the bottles to get anything to come out.
I'm used to this routine, but it always makes me stop and think... I'm SO glad I have holes in my head. Once again God knew what He was doing when created us. Just think what it would be like, traveling across the country, if we were air-tight. Either our heads would cave in or we would puff up until we...
One time when we were camping in the Rocky Mountains we took a picnic lunch way up to the top of a mountain. Our bag of chips actually exploded because of the change in altitude. (That's kind of a messy thought.)
So if you need some reason to give thanks today, thank our wise Creator for the holes in your head!
They make travel much more comfortable!
I am fearfully and wonderfully made!

Winter Winter Everywhere

The weather is miserably cold, but if you like winter, Kentucky is the place to be. (I'm not complaining, but winter is NOT my favorite season.) Starting Monday night ice and freezing rain started to fall.It continued to fall all day Tuesday. Then after a few inches of that, and once the road looked like an ice skating rink...then snow, a few more inches of it, fell, hiding all that ice. If you are one of my readers living in the south, remember this post in August. Put your feet in a bowl of ice, pull this post up and "escape" the awful heat!

Aren't you glad this is not your home? Poor little birds!

I've stayed in and tried to keep warm, but I did get out and slip around on the ice to snap these pictures. There really is something beautiful about ice and snow even though they can cause so many problems for so many people.

One problem, for example, is trying to drive. We were sitting around here yesterday evening minding our own business when a motor home came down the road spinning its wheels on the ice. It started to slide, then...

BLAM! It slid into the side of our truck.

Spring is still a couple of months away, but it only takes one good ice storm to make me ready for it! I'm watching the local weather as I type. There is "possibly" more snow in the forecast. I think I need a cup of hot cocoa!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Quick Update From Shepherdsville

We made it here safely. We arrived Monday evening just before the ice started to fall. Now we are firmly in the grip of the winter storm that has crossed the country.

We are safe and staying warm, but not without trial and aggravation. Our refrigerator has stopped working. Something has gone haywire with an electrical circuit so most of the plugs in the camper are not working. Our cell phones work only sporadically, and the Internet situation is even worse. The truck is frozen to the ground and the streets are too slick to get out on anyway.

I got out and took a few pictures of the ice and snow that I'll share with you later when the Wi-Fi service is working a little better. But for now, I think I might have a cup of hot tea and take a nap. What else can you do when everything is covered with several inches of ice and snow?

Keep warm and check back soon to see if I've thawed out!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Somewhere in Arkansas...

in a cheap motel, stopped for the night with some 570 miles to go. Yep, the phone rang again. We are on our way to Louisville, KY. And every one's first question is, "What happened in Louisville?"

It's old news, but the answer is Ike. We're headed up there to help sweep up the last crumbs of claims left from the hurricane that made it's way across the country a few months ago. See, sometimes even Rick's job can be dull. This is likely going to be a short assignment, but hey, I'm not complaining. A paycheck is better than a breadline and we just paid less than $2.00/gal. for fuel, so maybe the trip will be worth it.

If you remember, you might say a prayer for good weather. It looks like we might be driving into some ice tomorrow. We've taken the "southern route" to try to avoid as much of the freezing rain as we can, but I talked to an insured in Louisville this evening and she said that it was starting to sleet there.

Just a few days ago it was in the mid 70s in Amarillo! Oh how it made me long for spring! But here I am, headed north in January. Crazy? Maybe. But crazy fits me fine. It's sanity that never seems to be my size.

Speaking of clothes, (Well, OK. I'm talking about clothes now, so stick with me.) I have one sweatshirt and two hoodies in the camper. All my other winter clothes are somewhere in storage. I think hubby my get sick of looking at me in that one sweatshirt and two hoddies, but I hate to rush out to Wal-Mart and stock up on sweaters and the like because I'm still hoping for an assignment on the Gulf Coast! And because I'm a tightwad! So, I guess I'll just try my best to stay warm in the days ahead as I pray for a new storm near a sunny beach or an early spring!

We need to continue our journey early tomorrow so I'd better go wash off some of the road grime and hit the hay! Lord willing my next post will be from Louisville. See ya down the road!

Monday, January 19, 2009

What is "It?"

Tag, you're IT! What's it?

Whatever IT is, I guess that's what I am. (At least for this post.) Carol over at Choose Joy tagged me a few days back. I'm just now getting around to playing. (I never was any good at the game.) I'm supposed to tell you 7 weird or random things about myself.

1. My name--all of it! Lavonda is not common. My parents dreamt of me while watching an animated Walt Disney movie so my second name is the same as, well, a four-legged supporting character. My maiden name (Formway) is the made up American version of a I-can't-pronounce-or-spell-it German name. When my great-great-great (I don't know how many greats) grandfather came here from Germany, he made up a name that Americans could pronounce, thus all Formways in the U.S. are related. The name has almost ceased to exist.

2. I was in the third grade for only two weeks.

3. When I was a little girl, I used to pretend I was a horse or a cow.

4. During my life I've collected rocks, thimbles, and recipes, but not dust.

5. I usually sleep through movies. (At home, not in the theater.)

6. I look a lot like my mother.

7. I never lived in a town until I got married (at the age of 17).

Now I'm supposed to tag 7 other people.

How about if I just tag all 10 of my followers? (Except Carol) Take time to click on their pictures. Some of them have blogs and some don't. But they are all nice people. Those of you who don't blog, just leave your comments or you 7 things here for us all to enjoy. You bloggers, blog about your 7 things and then run out and tag someone else. Okay? Be sure to share links and all that jazz.

Thanks for playing.

What If...?

Have you ever played What If? You know, where you ask yourself what-if questions and then ponder your own answers? Like what if I'd been born a blond? What if I had a "skinny gene?"
What if the world really was flat? What if money really did grow on trees? What if I'd gone to college? What if TV had never been invented? What if men were not the controllers of the remote? What if chocolate tasted nasty? What if I could only own one pair of shoes?

I could go on all day. Don't get me wrong now. A lot of people would probably consider me a realist. Life is usually black and white and much too complicated and cluttered for fanciful day dreaming. But even levelheaded, down-to-earth, boring people such as myself need an escape hatch from time to time. I can't remember when was the last time I played this little game, but I read a news tidbit today that became my ejection seat, flinging me into the universe of what ifs.

Obama's inauguration is costing more than $150 million! I can't wrap my mind around that much money. We're talking a big forest full of money trees.

Over 15 mill will be spent on security. We wouldn't want our new American superhero to dash his foot upon a stone now would we? Of course not. The article doesn't say how much is going to be spent on porta-johns for the 1.5 to 3 million people expected to attend the event, but one has to wonder...

Around 45 million, give or take a dollar or two, will be spent to "create a dynamic inaugural experience." (Here I go flying out into the vast what-if expanse.) What if Abe L. (our hero's hero) would have had such a fan fair? Better yet, what if our new hero were as humble as Abe?

The spokeswoman for the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies is quoted in this article saying that they are very budget conscious. What if she had MY budget to work with? (If they are so budget conscious then why did President Bush have to declare an emergency in Washington D.C to get more money out of congress for security? What if Congress said NO?)

Ms. spokeswoman claims that the reason we're spending such a chunk is to send a message to the world about our peaceful transition of power. What if it really were a peaceful transition? We could have fewer security guards and more porta-johns.

What if the $150 + million could be used to help some American citizens who have recently lost their jobs make a few payments on their home loans, thus being a baby step in the long trip to repairing our broken economy? What would that action say to the world?

What if our new super-hero, who has raised some 35 million to help pay for this party, used his fundraising voodoo to raise money to care for our poor, our hungry, our overburdened oppressed tax payers?

What if we were more concerned about sending a message of real and lasting peace, hope and salvation to the world than we were about making life appear to be peaceful and hopeful?

What if...?

Friday, January 16, 2009

My Resolve

What to do about a New Year's resolution... now that it is the middle of the month. Obviously I shouldn't resolve to be more punctual or on top of things. Humm. Let me think.

I want to be super spiritual. You know, a hero of the faith. Maybe I should make a resolution to read my new Bible cover to cover. (I've already lost two weeks of reading time but I could probably make that up.) Yeah, I SHOULD resolve to do that, but will I get it done?

I could vow to keep up with entering receipts on a spreadsheet so tax time 2009 won't be quite so taxing. I COULD do that, but I said I would do that in 2008--I have a whole Rubbermaid tub full of wadded receipts to prove that I'm not too good at keeping that resolution either.

I'd like to lose at least 25 pounds. HA HA HA ha ha, ho ho ho, HE HE HE! (I'm glad I thought of that one! I needed a good laugh!)

There are plenty of changes I need to make in my life. So many in fact that I can't decide which one to put at the top of my list. I hate New Year's resolutions. Their only real purpose is to remind me of just how big a disappointment I am to myself.

I admire people who can make a resolution and stick to it.

Here is a list of things I think I could resolve to do in 2009 and be successful.
1. Lose at least 3 pounds of muscle and gain at least 5 pounds of fat.
2. Waste at least 1 hour a day playing with my DS.
3. Watch too much TV.
4. Go over my 1400 minutes talking to my girls on the phone.
5. Act like my mother OR my father, OR BOTH.

What kind of self-respecting person makes resolutions to do things that happen naturally, without even trying? I've given this whole resolution thing a lot of thought. I finally came up with a good one.

In 2009 I will try my best to be completely truthful ABOUT myself TO myself.

Sounds easy? Maybe you can try it with me. I dare ya!

Monday, January 12, 2009

Which Way Did It Go?

That steamroller that left me flattened--which way did it go? Oh, there was more than one? I thought so!

Relocating, (again) holidays, wedding, and making the rounds to visit family before we are deployed again and the winter crud (cough cough cough) just about did me in. So many days without my blog friends--I was starting to twitch! That twitching enabled me to peel my flattened self up off the ground, so here I am. Did you think I just gave up the ghost? I thought about it, but life is like a good book--I want to see how it ends.

Thanks for hanging in there with me!

Yesterday I told my mother that I was ready for my life to get back to normal. She asked me if my life was ever normal. Well, okay, so it's not really. But I'm ready for it to get back to it's less hectic abnormality.

In case you were wondering, my Christmas was wonderful, I went to bed early on New Year's Eve, the wedding was absolutely beautiful, (I cried only a little--some mascara was left when the day was done) and I think I've lived through the worst of the winter-time illness that gave me laryngitis, infected sinuses, and a cough that rattles the rafters. I will probably be coughing until spring.

I've not turned on my computer in a L-O-N-G time so today my electronic buddy informed me that I had 70 something new email messages. That doesn't count the who knows how many I have not read over the past three weeks. Just a minute ago I hurriedly deleted all the ones that I knew I could live without reading and I still have 101 unread at this moment. It's not good to get so far behind. But I did finally get a chance to go through the basket of snail mail. It was nice getting to read the Christmas cards--now that Christmas 2008 is just a memory.

Today I'm going to tackle the laundry. (I think I hear another steamroller coming!) And I will start to pray for a storm. (Forgive me, but that's the only way we can keep eating ya know.) We hope to hang around here long enough to help our youngest granddaughter celebrate her first birthday, but then we need to be getting back to work. By faith and God's grace we take it one day at a time.

After I get the laundry finished and play with the girls just a little bit, I'll try to read a few blogs and work on some homework. (I'm 5 lessons behind!) Y'all can pray for me to get caught up. I remember reading a cartoon one time that said, "God put me on this earth to do a certain number of things. I'm so far behind I'll never die!" I can relate.

Now if I can dodge those steamrollers...

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Happy New Year!

I remember a line from a song I heard many times as a child. I think it is from Walt Disney's version of Alice in Wonderland.

I'm late, I'm late, for a very important date. No time to say hello good-bye, I'm late I'm late I'm late!

I seem to be going in circles, feeling like I should be somewhere doing something but I'm too frazzle-brained to know where and what. The only thing I do know is...

No time to say hello good-bye.