Barnabas Tidbits!

I have returned to the real world...not that I necessarily want to be here, but here I am. I have to say, my week at Camp Barnabas was AMAZING. I will be honest, I had forgotten how physically demanding the position of Cabin Mom is, but I LOVED every moment of it.

I am amazed at the amount of KINDNESS at camp. Everywhere you look, people are loving on each other, helping each other, and just plain encouraging each other.

My favorite part was going to the pool. At camp, there is a teenager assigned to each child, and they are required to stay within arms reach of each other AT ALL TIMES. And, while I was skeptical at first when I went last year, it REALLY works.

So, at the pool, there are the "normal" swimming activities, except the teenagers let the kids get them wet, soak them, drag them down the slides was incredible to watch. And of course, I got to play a part in it too.

One of our campers, Ronni, stole my heart from the beginning. She's 7 years old, with Down's Syndrome, and is CUTE. She can be a handful at times, but can also be sweet the next moment. So, at the pool there is an area where you can pull a rope and let water pour straight down. Ronni would take my hand, put me under the water, get me soaked, and then fix my hair like we were in a beauty parlor. Then she would dunk me in the water to smooth the hair out and do it all over again. We did it at least 100 times the first day, and I'm not even kidding. She would even hold my nose at times so that water wouldn't go up my nose. It was my favorite part of the day. She didn't do it all the time with me, but just about every day I was dragged over and we did it. I just smiled. And it made the camp DVD, which REALLY meant a lot to me. My favorite part of my camp experience caught on DVD. Awesome stuff.

Also, one night at Wrap up, Ronnie came over and crawled into my lap and fell asleep. To be honest, I can't remember the last time a kid fell asleep in my arms. I was torn between laughing and crying the entire time. It was AMAZING.

I was constantly reminded that God knows what we need before we need it. I didn't know I would experience what I did through Ronni (and there will be more stories in the days to come, I guarantee it!) but each and every moment was a GIFT.

I've already told Laura I want to go again next year during the same week. :-)

I gotta run at the moment, but stay tuned for more Barnabas Tidbits!



I have to admit, I'm a bit bummed that my time here in Texas is just about to come to an end. I have REALLY enjoyed being a bum here on Ms. H's oversized chair, watching TV, goofing around on my computer, chatting, laughing, and playing with Freddy, the Weiner Dog. And, I am SO GLAD that Freddy has come to a place where he isn't so scared of me anymore. :-) To me, that means a lot to me.

The highlight of my day, althought it has all been enjoyable, is my new book Thr3e by Ted Dekker. I shared the other night how excited I was about the book bargain, but due to a headache last night, I didn't really start it until today. WOW! It has been a LONG time since I've been hooked on a book like this. :-) Thanks to TeacherLady in homegroup who recommended it! AWESOME stuff. :-)

Well, I think I'll log out and curl up with my book now!


Barnabas Bound!

I am enjoying my time here in the great state of Texas, but have been pondering the fact that one week from tonight I will be at Camp Barnabas, serving as a Cabin Mom. Last year I went, and I found myself in an incredible life-changing experience. I have been looking forward to going back again all year. So, it is exciting to think that one week from tonight I'll be with the CIA's and campers. I can't wait!

By the way, I had a camper write in to my comments section here on my blog, and if you're reading this, please write again. I would love to connect with you.

For the rest of my readers, I hope this finds you well. As for me, I'm gonna go back to my bum status!


The Bargain Hunter!

Today was great! I slept in, went swimming in Ms. H's pool, cuddled with the Weiner Dog a bit, watched a bit of TV, chatted online with a friend, and WENT SHOPPING!

Now, I'll be the first to admit I am not a huge shopper. I'm typically one to go to a store, get what I need, and get out. But, today when Ms. H. suggested going to Mardel, I was up for it. For those of you who don't know, Mardel is a Christian/Teacher supply store. And I found some good bargains!

My favorite bargain was a book a friend in HomeGroup suggested last week. Teacherlady in Homegroup suggested "Thr3ee" by Ted Dekker. I've never read any of Ted Dekker's stuff, but she highly recommended it. She said it was her favorite book of all time. That's a powerful statement for those of us who LOVE to read!

So, as I was browing the book section, I found it for $7.99. Not bad. But, I'll admit, I put it back. I have it on reserve at the library at home, and couldn't justify it. Only kicker is, the book won't be available until the end of July. And, I want to read it now!

So, as I was walking up to the front of the store, I saw a copy of it on clearance for $2.99! I just about did a little happy dance right then and there! Needless to say, I made it out of the store with the book, a journal with Hebrews 11:1 on it, (one of my FAVORITE scriptures!) some postcards for my 365 buddies at school, and some note cards!

I know, it's not much. Not a huge thing. But in my book, it was a great shopping trip!

So, for now I think I'll go curl up with my new book!


Home Improvement, Oklahoma Style

Is it only here that all home improvement advice begins with the words, "Yaounta getcha some..."?

Stain streaking on the benches I'm painting?
"Yaounta getcha a rag and just wipe it on real light."

Did you discover the bathroom you're painting is actually paint over peeling wallpaper which leaves a smooth bare wall exposed?
"Yaounta getcha some joint compound..."

I'm beginning to think this has the makings of a great Q&A situation. All answers will begin with "Yaounta getcha..."

The Weiner Dog

Today has been a WONDERFUL first day of vacation. I have slept in, moved to my chair with my quilt, have set my laptop up, and have been enjoying my new Bum Status. I also need to mention the bonus of Comedy Channel and TNT, channels I don't have at home, where I have enjoyed escaping reality into the land of Television Entertainment. Ms. H. introduced me to the humor of Jeff Dunham on Comedy Central, where I laughed so hard I thought I was going to pee at times. :-) It was GREAT!

The highlight of the day though, was The Weiner Dog named Freddy. Freddy is a little dog who Ms. H. adopted from an abusive situation, and he's the most jumpy dog I've ever seen! Their have been several humorous moments, the first of which was when I was attempting to eat my sandwich and pretzels, and Ms. H. came over to get Freddy out of my lap so I could eat lunch in peace, and instead of going to her, he pulled away, and knocked my sandwich and pretzels all over! We were both laughing as she got the dog away! It was quite humorous.

And the story to top all stories for today, we were watching TV a bit ago and a dog commercial came on and Freddy started barking at the TV. So, then Ms. H. brought up a pre-recorded news story about squirrels, and Freddy went NUTS! He was barking and trying to reach the TV! I have never seen a dog react to TV like that! I laughed quite hard, and after it was over, I told Ms. H. "That was right up there with the Jeff Dunham show!"

Stay tuned for more goofy vacation stories on The Weiner Dog, Freddy!



Today I got up and went to church. As usual, I want to state that I LOVE my church family. This Sunday felt very different because I got to be on the Worship Team (not so different) and then I got to stay IN THE SANCTUARY for service. I have spent a lot of time back with the kids lately, so it was sort of nice to be out with the adults. And, I was amazed at how the sermon was right for me. It shouldn't be that big of a surprise, but I was in awe of God this morning. As Pastor Mike preached, I thought, "okay, God, I get that!" Good, good stuff.

So, after church I went home and packed up and came to Texas to visit Ms. H. After 6.5 hours in the car, and lots of good prayer time, I made it here safely. I am glad to get away for a few days, and act as if there isn't a Nowhere Real, Missouri to get back to. For the next 2 weeks I'm acting as if I'm not even a teacher at a school. :-)

Of course, the imfamous "Freddy" won't get near me yet. That's okay, give him time, and he'll figure out how cool I am! :-)

So, for now I'm gonna logout and relax!

Have a great day!


Back in...

...the Summer Routine!

I tell ya, this past week has been great. In fact, I can honestly say it's flying by faster than I expected. I guess that's good, I haven't been bored yet, and don't think I will be for a while.

I will say that my favorite part of break so far, is sleeping in. After several days of being a good teacher, and helping with some extra tutoring, I'm done. I'm still tutoring Jay, but that's not until the afternoons, so I am having fun!

I am also having fun staying up until the early hours of the morning with a good book. I know, I know, I am a bum. But, hey, isn't this what summer is all about? Staying up late and getting up late? Seriously...

I feel like this is the first Summer I've been on the verge of burnout from teaching. Mr. H. told me a few Summers ago that it is typically around years eight and nine of teaching, and, well, I just finished my 9th year, and I honestly feel a need for a break in a way I've never felt before. LostBoy has worn on me, and I feel different this Summer. In fact, I got a letter in the mail today about scheduled workshops that I will need to attend for my job, and some are offerred in July and again in August. I'll be honest, typically I do all I can in July so I can earn extra money. But, not this Summer. I plan to pretend for the month of July that I am not a teacher, with lost children to work with, I'm just a gal taking a vacation from work. :-)

Two weeks from now I am Barnabas Bound, but that will be fun, not in a classroom setting. :-)

At the moment though, I hear a book calling my name.


A Busy Bee!

So, over the past two days I have been to a 4th of July shindig with my awesome homegroup, Ruby Day with my parents, cousins, aunts, uncles, etc, out to Grove to hang with BakeryWoman and her family, and to church today to be with the coolest church family on the planet.

And now I am tuckered out. I am ready to be a bum. I was going to go see the parents this week, but I have opted to be a bum on my couch for a week. Fortunately, the parents were cool with that, as long as I will go north at some point this Summer. Little do they realize they can't get rid of me that easily! Hahaha!

So, while I am still tutoring and taking care of little stuff, I plan on being on the couch the majority of the time the next few days! I'm sure I'll have more movie news to pass your way as the week progresses.

As for now, I plan on heading to crash with a good book, one of my favorite parts of Summer Vacation!


6 Weeks off!

So I know it's been a few days since I've posted, but I'm glad to report that Summer Break has finally started for me! I am still tutoring a couple kids, but that isn't a biggie. It's nothing like working 7:30-3:15 (or later)each day. It's nice.

So now that I have a bit of time, I want to post my most recent movie recommendations. I have spent quite a bit of time being a bum and watching DVD's that I've rented, and I wanted to share what I've seen and give you some feedback. Please feel free to comment back if you've seen one and disagree or agree or have something you would like to recommend for my readers to see.

I'll start from what I've seen most recently and work my way back. I'm using an A,B,C,D,F scale. I'm a schoolteacher, so it's easy for me to think in terms of grades. :-)

The Spiderwick Chronicles-B+
While I haven't read any of these books, I wanted to see the movie. I didn't know anything about it going into it, I just knew many kids at school were reading the books. And, from the moment it started, I was HOOKED. It was an adventure story, and I am beginning to really like those. Now, if you're against magic, and that sort of stuff, this isn't a movie for you. As for me, I really liked it. (It's not like I'm going to go out and perform witchcraft on kids!) The only reason it got a B+ instead of an A is because some of the images were intense, and for it to be a kid's show, I didn't think it was appropriate for all ages. I know, it's rated PG, but I still thought they could have done it a bit better.

Vantage Point-B
I really enjoyed this flick. I was really drawn into it from the very beginning. I am really getting into action/adventure sort of stuff this Summer, and this was a good one. The only reason it's a B instead of an A was because it was good, but not good enough to be put into my video library. It was good, but it's not one I would watch repeatedly. But, with that being said, it's worth the rental.

10 Items or Less-C
This was an independent film starring Morgan Freeman. I rented it because it had Morgan in it. And, I will say, it was decent. But, it didn't have much plot or story to it. It had a few good quotes, which makes it worthy of a C. But, seriously, Morgan Freeman is better than that film. It was only an hour and 10 minutes long. Too long in my book. I'm glad he did "The Bucket List". I haven't lost all hope in Morgan Freeman yet.

Definately, Maybe-D
This movie is one I had looked forward to seeing since it was in theatres. Actually, I had wanted to see it while it was in theatres, but never did. And, I was GREATLY disappointed. I am typically up for a good romantic comedy, but this was awful. I'll be honest, perhaps it's my mood as I'm still waiting for Mr. Right, but to watch a guy have to choose between three girls...nope...not worth a rental in my book. I'm sorry I wasted my money on it.

I picked this up on a whim that it would be a good, no name romantic comedy. It was stupid. That's all I'll say. Two hours of my life I can't get back. ARGH!

Overall, my favorite movies of the Summer have been Wall-E (only in theatres) and The Bucket List. Both earned an A+ in my book.

Stay tuned for more movie news!