Thursday, February 26, 2009

Top Gear

Last weekend Thomas introduced David and I to the British TV show TopGear that has some clips on Utube. We laughed our heads off. Last night during dinner we flipped on the computer and watched a few more clips while we ate. This is HUGE. We don't really get into TV too much - we like movies but we look wonderingly…even enviously at times…at those couples who refer to some sitcom or reality show as "our show." The truth is we didn't even get a converter for our TV. We just hardly turn it on unless there's a DVD in the player. I write all that to say - we're not that easily swayed. Top Gear is ridiculously funny. If you want a taste, here's a link to blips from an episode where they are challenged to build amphibious vehicles - what they don't know when they build them is that the end challenge is to take them across the English Channel.

I could go on and on. It's hysterical.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Big News



For the past few months David and I have been placing secret bets on when Brad and Lisa would get married. From the first time he came to Louisville to visit Lisa, we were fans of his...and loved watching from the sidelines as he fought to win her heart. Lisa is such a treasure...and not a gal to be easily swayed by any ole guy who crosses her path. Brad pursued her well and has proven himself a man worthy of her respect.

This weekend we found out the big news- Lisa and Brad are engaged!!!

My apologies for delaying my blog post (Mrs. Boeving - I know you were counting on me as the news bearer:) but I wanted to give her a chance to joyfully declare her own big news first!

The date is set for the summer. Best wishes, Lisa and Brad!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Caramel and Coke


We got a bit of snow this afternoon and Melvin the Malaysian was super excited. I think this was his first time to see non-Mississippi snow. There's a difference in the flakes....and he stood outside amazed that it would actually stick to his shirt.


They even got Melvin on his first sled ride....we probably got less than a quarter of an inch, but somehow they made it down the hill.



Long have I admired those dedicated women who've reached a pinnacle in any cooking career - the success of homemade caramel icing. This afternoon I plucked up my courage and tried my hand. To my absolute amazement, it turned out fairly well for a first attempt. So now, we're all in a sugar daze while playing one of our favorite games...The Settlers of Catan.



For all you MC folk...please note Thomas has a coke in his hand. He brought 6 liters with him to our house. I'm serious.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Thomas and Melvin



When I was a junior in college, MC hired a new BSU associate - Thomas. That year we went to my all time favorite state-side mission site: Mission Arlington in Texas. Thomas led the trip. I was in the midst of raging doubts and intellectual quandries concerning the Christian faith. I think that was the first time I heard Thomas mention Melvin. On the car ride to Texas he began to tell me Melvin's testimony. He spoke of the power of God to save, and about hope in the midst of severe suffering. It was a turning point for me in my struggles…the simple testimony of a brother I'd never met at that point. Thomas is one of the smartest people I know. He speaks Mandarin - just because it seemed like a cool language to learn. He writes books. He's been absolutely everywhere - barring Iceland. (Though I've never asked him specifically so I suppose he could have been there.) He has a story for every occasion and an uncanny ability to quote song lyrics appropriate (or sometimes inappropriate) for any situation. One of my favorite stories about Thomas is that once in college he and a buddy decided to take a road trip to Chicago. They missed an exit and were headed west. They decided to forget Chicago and drive to California. If I remember correctly, they drove all through the night. Thomas arrived at the beach, called his mom to say hi and they got back in the car to return to Mississippi.

When I was in Africa, Rebekah Ray wanted to come over for a visit. Her parents forbade us from hiking and going on safari without male protection. Rebekah talked David Dawkins into the trip and asked Thomas to think about it. He'd told her he'd "had a hankering to go to Africa" and bought a ticket. It was seriously one of the best trips of my life. When I returned to the states a month later after 1.5 years in Africa, we all went canoeing together at the Spring River. That was the weekend David first spoke to me about his desire to pursue me. A few months later, Thomas started dating Marni. I've never been able to get a picture of just who would be the perfect match for Thomas. When I met Marni, it all made sense. She's perFecT for him. And talk about good stories - that girl's got a book full - just from living with Thomas. Last time we visited Oxford, she pointed to the backyard. Thomas's dream was to build a bicycle that you can ride into water. He succeeded….though it cost their backyard a bit of beauty.

Thomas and Melvin are making a road trip to Louisville this weekend to hang out. David and I are terribly excited. Anything's possible. We're planning to take them to the skate park if the weather holds up.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Old Favorites


This week I've been picking up some old favorites and reading a few lines here and there. My Elisabeth Elliot books were ragged by the end of high school and college. Over the past few years, I haven't picked her writing up quite as much. This morning I did. I was reminded from the start why I spent so much time quoting her back in those days.
I think part of what refreshes me so much in her writing is her practicality. She's always applying the living truth to real living. I'm so prone to emotionalism and she has a knack for bringing perspective that's not ruled by emotion - but conscious of it. The Scriptures take precedence over the emotion but in it she doesn't lose the beauty and sweeping depth of life as it is lived here - with all our senses and emotions engaged. God has often used her words to shed light on life for me.

Here's a taste for you:

"Between two and three o'clock yesterday morning I luxuriated. I lay listening to the night sounds in a small house on the "stern and rockbound" coast of Massachusetts….I was thinking, as I suppose I am always thinking, in one way or another, about mystery. An English magazine which contained an interview had just come in the mail, and of course I read it, not to find out what I'd said to the man last spring, but to find out what he said I'd said. He had asked me about some of the events in my life, and I had told him that because of them I had to "come to terms with mystery." That was an accurate quotation, I'm sure, but as I lay in bed I knew that one never comes to any final terms with mystery - not in this life, anyway. We keep asking the same unanswerable questions and wondering why the explanations are not forthcoming. We doubt God. We are anxious about everything when we have been told quite clearly to be anxious about nothing. Instead of stewing we are supposed to pray and give thanks."

Monday, February 16, 2009

Valentined



David is incredibly hard to buy gifts for - I was particularly excited about my Valentine's selection though. After last year's gardening success, he's already been making plans for this year. Our neighbor used Miracle Grow last year and his tomatoes were hUgE compared to ours. This may have more to the fact that he's probably been gardening for 70 years now than it does with Miracle Grow but David was convinced he needed a little miracle. Here he is with his happy gifts - I threw in a blueberry bush as well. I make the confession that that selection wasn't entirely unselfish:)



I stole an idea off of Beth's blog and made a few felt hearts to decorate my reed diffuser. Cute?



Last year David cooked me dinner for Valentine's Day. I loved it so much that I requested it become a tradition. It was a complete success again this year. Just to give you an idea - he wore a suit and served me with a white towel over his arm. I love that husband of mine. Here's the dining room table pre-feast:



I realize I've been tagged by Laurin...but Dave has the laptop so you'll have to wait for my response.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Behind the Wheel



One of my favorite parts of marriage is that I have a driver. David loves to be behind the wheel. I love to sit in the passenger seat. David gets car sick if he reads too much in the car. I can read, work on the computer, sleep, pull out my craft bag...you name it. When we took our trip around the West after we married, we drove over 7,500 miles in 33 days. I drove no more than 10 of those 7,500 miles.

This little video came to me yesterday and made me laugh so hard. Why? I can totally relate. I have TerRibLe depth perception. I can't tell if there's a foot or an inch between me and other cars when I'm parking. The truth is - I've gotten out of my car more than once to let someone else parallel park for me. I know some girls might be offended that this little video was originally entitled "Female Drivers." Not me - I'm the kind of gal they stereotype.

My secret dream is to drive like Charlize Theron on The Italian Job. I think about it everytime I see a Mini Cooper.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Crockpot-ables

Basically, I love my crock pot. I have three crock pot cookbooks. I have three crock pots in various sizes. Sometimes I use them to cook simultaneously.

During the Ice Storm, Bonnie made lasagna in the crock pot. It was delicious - and easy. I tried it out on the Memphis crew this weekend and it was a hit. Usually I'm not much of a recipe poster. I leave that kind of thing up to my food blogging friends who hold expertise. But, at Brienne's request I am putting it on the blog - I feel more qualified to post this one since it pertains to my crock pot passion.

Violette's Lasagna
(Fix It and Forget-It.)

8 lasagna noodles (uncooked)
1 lb browned/drained ground beef (I substituted 1/2 bag frozen spinach drained for one pot - it was a hit!
1tsp Italian seasoning
28 oz jar spaghetti sauce
1/3 cup water
15 oz ricotta cheese
2 cups shredded mozzarella
4 oz can mushrooms (optional)

1. Break noodles and place in bottom of greased slow cooker.
2. Layer ingredients. Repeat.
3. Sprinkle with remainder of mozzarella.
4. Cook on low for 5 hours.

MMMMM. Tis good.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Memphis to Louisville


Beyond my night with the pink cowgirls, I had a pretty girl-friendly weekend. Lynn's Paradise Cafe, shopping on Frankfurt, chocolate covered strawberries, a sappy chic flick. Anytime Memphians are in the vicinity, I make it a point to clear the calendar:) This weekend Amanda and Brienne made the trek to the Boeving house...

Amanda and I have been friends for over 16 years and when I'm around her I usually act almost as ridiculous as I did in Junior High. There are only a few who know the extremity of that statement.


Brienne and I have met on a few occassions but have never really gotten a chance to hang out - something about her made me feel instantly at ease though. I forgot that I barely knew her until I had to ask her last name! We have so many mutual Memphis friends that for a few years now I've felt like we just should be friends. Glad the feeling is remedied into reality now.


In case you're wondering, little Savannah had some assistance for this one.

The Pink Cowgals



I know you've been on the edge of your seats all weekend about my night at the Circus.

Fire hoops with a tiger to jump through them.
Check.
Ballerina elephant with decorated tusks who could balance on a cylinder.
Check.
Cotton Candy and junk food galore.
Check.
Ridiculous clowns that are enough to make even a well balanced child cry.
Check.
Acrobats climbing on high ropes with no safety gear.
Check.

The circus was pretty much what I remembered as a child - only I saw it all through older eyes. As a child I didn't think too much about the people underneath the clown costume or up on the tight rope. As an adult, I thought of little else. Circus workers are a mystery to me. There must be a documentary on them by now. Maybe I'll try to find it.

At the end of the night, I asked Keyara what her favorite part was. Immediately, she replied "The Pink Cowgirls." In the midst of all the action, a provocative country song about "being a woman" blasted through the arena and a large entourage of girls clad in some sort of hot pink cowgal spandex danced across the stage. The song ended with them spinning on ropes in their cowgal leotards. It was quite moving, apparently.
Never mind the lady who hung from her toes 25 feet from the ground with no net to catch her or the man in the cage with 3 tigers - give us the pink cowgirls!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Fire Hoops

A few months ago I was matched with a "little sis" through a great organization - Big Brother Big Sister KY. For the past few months Keyara* and I have been hanging out - watching HS Musical 3, Hollywood Chihuahua, visiting the Art Sparks museum, eating Chick-fil-a. Tonight we are going to the Kosair Circus that's at the KY Expo. To be honest, I'm not really sure what to anticipate? Fire hoops. Tight ropes. Elephants. Tiny cars and clowns. Lions in cages. What takes place at a circus these days? For all I know they could have jumped on the technology bandwagon and there could be laser lights and simulated tight rope walkers. It's been at least 10 years since I've been to a circus. I feel confident of one thing though - Cotton Candy!!! How could they improve on that?

*ok. that's not her real name.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Hibernation

It is cold in Louisville. 10 Degrees this morning when I stepped outside. At times my teeth chatter so violently that I'm afraid they will fall out. I've noticed a few things in the past week of winter flurry:

1. I am unusually tired.
2. I've been eating more than my regulated caloric intake per day.
3. I would rather have my teeth fall out than go for a run.

Is it possible that my body is going into hibernation?


A few tidbits about hibernation found on Encarta are reinforcing my conclusion:

"In cold weather most animals must eat large quantities of food to obtain the energy needed to carry on normal body activities."

"As body activities slow, the animal becomes less and less capable of coordinated movement, gradually slipping into a state of dormancy, or torpor."


What if I slip into a state of torpor?

tor⋅por   /ˈtɔrpər/ [tawr-per]

–noun 1. sluggish inactivity or inertia.
2. lethargic indifference; apathy.
3. a state of suspended physical powers and activities.
4. dormancy, as of a hibernating animal.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Down by the River...or the Strait



Back in the day, when David first began to "woo" me(what a great word) he was on his way to training in Virginia before heading to Peru for two years. He and his team mate Quinten decided to extend the road trip and drive around the Great Lakes and up into Canada. Their goal : to dip into the waters of all the 5 of the lakes. They did. In Peru, he swam in the Amazon. In Africa - the Indian Ocean and a random frigid stream with Thomas Herrington. It's become a habit...almost an obsession. One of the first things that David shared with me about his trip was that he dipped into the Bosporus. It was definitely a highlight of his trip. Thought I'd let you in on the saga. I'm not sure this one goes along with my life long dream - to step on all of the continents. I'm more of a land girl myself. Antarctica doesn't seem like a conducive climate to his quirky dream.