Thursday, August 31, 2006

Puppy Update

Juju is now 4 months old. Her last visit to the vet was last Friday, when she received her final set of vaccinations and her rabies shot. She weighed in at 26 pounds!! The vet says you can estimate their adult weight by doubling it at 4 months, so she will probably grow to twice her size now: 50 pounds or so.

She is doing well with potty-training; in fact, I'd say she's pretty well potty-trained, although you still have to make sure she's let out frequently. But she is fine being left in the kitchen for 4-5 hours at a time (although one of us is usually home after 3-4 hours of "alone time"). We have taken to keeping the garbage can and kitchen towels up on the counter out of reach, though!

She loves water and loves to dump her water bowl all over the kitchen floor...many times a day, if possible! And of course she is in the chewing stage, which they say puppies go through between 4-6 months, growing in their new adult teeth. So she always has to have something in her mouth. And she really craves a good 20-30 minute walk each evening! But I'm glad not to have a "barky" dog, because she generally only barks at me if she wants attention, a walk, food, or when she wants to come inside.

She does really well socially. She loves to play with the neighborhood dogs and kids and loves to run around the yard. She knows sit, stay, down, shake, and speak really well, and is doing pretty well with come.

She has graduated from sleeping in her crate/kennel (which she has incidentally now outgrown and needs a new one before I can confine her in one again) to sleeping in my bedroom with me. Yes, I let her sleep on the bed!

She still has a lot of puppy energy, but I think she doing pretty well for a four-month old dog!

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Piles & Piles

Piles, piles of stuff. I have many piles. Usually papers and books. Why do I have piles?? I've been asking that question to myself lately. If I put the books that I've been wanting to read on the bookshelf, I will forget that I haven't read them yet, so therefore they must be in a pile by my bed. Magazines...I probably haven't read the last 10 magazines I've received, thus they are in a pile somewhere to read. A pile of unopened mail that I haven't gotten around to yet. A small pile of bills to pay the first of the month. Piles of music to give to students. Piles of music to put back on the shelf. A pile of music to go through and see what I want to keep. A pile of dishes in the sink to wash (or load into the dishwasher). Piles of folded clothes (or not so folded) to put away.

I have some excuses for these piles, but I don't know if they are really valid reasons to have piles or not. It takes energy to take care of a pile, whether it be reading the material or washing the dishes...many days I don't have much energy when I get home (at least not for that kind of stuff) so a lot of times I wait for a day that I can get up in the morning and have a fresh start on this stuff (i.e., Saturday). Saturdays are great days to sort through piles!

Another excuse is that I tend to be a visual person and will totally forget about something if it has been "stored away" somewhere.

And the last reason to have piles is that there is no place yet designated to store the aforementioned "stuff."

The bad thing about having piles is that you get used to it. And sometimes I let things "pile up" in my spiritual life. Whoops. Forgot to have my devotions for the last 5 I have to read 10 chapters of Deuteronomy in one sitting (as an example). Can I really make it a point/habit to take care of some of these things EVERY day??

There is a whole lot of accomplishment derived from taking care of a pile. Sometimes it is very freeing to get things taken care of in the short term and not have a whole pile of "dishes" or whatever sitting in the sink. So I'm not trying to make excuses, I'm just trying to figure out why I do things the way I do and if they should be done that way or not.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

My Piano

Okay, I know I said I had decide what to get this year: a Mac, a dog, or a piano. Well, the Lord provided all three for me this summer in His time! A friend had an acquaintance trying to get rid of a piano, so I decided I would at least look at it. I had been hoping to spend only about $500 or $600, and this piano (once I got there) was quoted to me as $800. But it appeared to be in very good condition, hadn't been moved for a long time...also hadn't been tuned in 3 years, but I did like the feel of it, even though it's only a "Cable" brand. I looked at it on a Thursday, I think, then that Sunday night (we didn't have church) a group of guys from the Career Class jumped into a car from the softball game they had at church and loaded it up onto a lift truck that another man from church had. I didn't have to even lift the bench! Praise the Lord for a great church family! I haven't written about it yet because this all happened the week right BEFORE Sarah came to live with me, so I've been kind of busy since then! We have played the piano, although now it desperately needs tuning, but a co-worker from school has offered his services to come tune it for me, and he's not even going to let me pay him. Jehovah-Jireh!

Wednesday, August 23, 2006


I heard some bad news today. I found out that one of my "favorite" students at school--a Senior!--was expelled from school due to a bad decision he made at the high school retreat. I honestly don't know much more than that as to what exactly the offense was (although a girl was expelled as well)--and I don't need to know--but this just makes me very sad and disappointed. I'm sure this student had no intententions of wrongdoing but just let wrong thinking get in the way. I hope and pray that he doesn't allow this wrong thinking to become a manner of life, but accepts God's forgiveness and allows this to strengthen his resolve to walk with the Lord.

It is so easy to make "stupid" decisions...but our actions do have consequences. It is VERY easy and tempting to think that one little thing won't make a difference, or it won't matter if I do this one wrong thing that lasts but a fleeting moment...but that's a lie. What we do will affect not only the rest of our school year but quite possibly the rest of our lives. (I know I will definitely miss this person around school.) We never even realize sometimes how our actions affect those around us--especially those who look up to us. It is so easy to want to do something "stupid" (I know I am tempted sometimes!) UNLESS we are keeping our focus on God and His marvelous plan for our lives.

I believe Pastor Viars is planning to speak from the life of Jonah soon and how his actions had consequences for those around him. Just think of the men on the ship with Jonah who almost drowned! I need to keep an eternal focus whenever I am tempted to think that what I do will only affect me. That is definitely not true.

This is also a good reminder to me of how important it is to keep being daily renewed in my mind (Rom. 12:1-2, Phil. 4:8) or else it is easy to just get caught up in the worldly things of the moment. By spending time with the Lord EACH DAY (which is a struggle for me) I am helping myself to make right choices and, more importantly (what I need to work on) to think right thoughts.

(BTW, since this is a matter of common knowledge, I don't see this blog as gossip, but rather just sharing my thoughts and what I have learned and been reminded of through this situation in MY life.)

Sunday, August 20, 2006

All Moved In

Well, my little sis Sarah is here and all moved in to her red room! She came down on Tuesday night, followed close behind by my parents, who had most of her stuff packed away in their minivan. We spent pretty much ALL day Wednesday, Thursday, and again Friday going through her stuff and my stuff, figuring out where to put things and organizing. Mom and Dad were a HUGE help in buying organizers and getting the garage laid out really nice so we can put both cars in the garage! (Dad even put the finishing touch on my hanging tennis balls from the ceiling right so we know how far in the garage to park!)

Mom and Dad were thinking of leaving Friday but stayed one more day to finish helping get organized. We even spent a few hours at my office getting a few things moved around!

But we did take some breaks to eat out at some of the fine dining establishments in town (Cracker Barrel, IHOP, and Hunan Chinese Cuisine)...thanks Dad!

We were so busy I did NOT take any pictures, but I will have to snag a few soon of some of the new things.

Oh, have I posted about the PIANO yet? I have not...oh, I will have to post about that, too. I got a piano LAST week!!

Okay. Enough for now.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

A Speck

Can you find the earth in this photo?
Today in our Teacher In-Service meetings, Dr. Frank Hamrick, our speaker, showed us this pretty cool pic taken from space. This is a picture of the earth taken from a satellite headed out to Pluto; it had been traveling about 140 miles a second for 20 years. Can you find the earth in a sunbeam? We're just SPECKS on THAT speck!!! How great is our GOD!

"When I consider thy heavens, the work of thy fingers, the moon and the stars, which thou hast ordained; What is man, that thou art mindful of him? and the son of man, that thou visitest him?" Psalm 8:3-4

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Happy Birthday, Sarah!

I dedicate this post to my littlest sis, Sarah, who turned 22 yesterday (August 7). She is done with college and is ready to be out on her own, so she is coming to live with ME in Lafayette next week (probably August 15) and find a job. I'm looking forward to having her with me. Her red room is all painted and she is looking forward to furnishing it herself (after I get her a bed.) Happy Birthday, Sarah!

Monday, August 07, 2006

Allstate 400 at the Brickyard

My sister Rachel got her and her husband tickets to the NASCAR race this Sunday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway (Allstate 400 at the Brickyard). So they got to come down and stay with me from Friday night (I beat them home by half an hour) until they left this morning (Monday) at 9:30 a.m. They also brough their dog Reeses--so Juju had her "chew toy" again! We drove around and did some shopping here in Lafayette on Saturday. They came to church with me for the 9:30 service Sunday morning, then left at 11:00 to head to Indy to catch the beginning of the 2:30 race. (The dogs and I had a good nap on Sunday afternoon, though.) Matt & Rachel said they were able to still get there an hour before the race and hang around a little afterward. Their backs were a little redder when they got back because of being out in the 90-degree temperatures and the beating sun. But they said they had good seats in the "H" section (by Turn 4 and the entrance to the Pits) and were able to have the Jumbotron in front of them. It sounded like they had a good time, even though Matt's favorite driver is Jeff Gordon and he did NOT win the race. But now Matt has a Jimmie Johnson hat. And I think they bought a Jeff Gordon T-shirt or two. They came home around 9:30 exhausted from all the walking and from being in the sun. Hope you guys had fun! I enjoyed having you stay here!

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Pics in Michigan (see post below)

Tim & Kristen

Swimming in Lake Superior at Little Presque Isle

Tim & Kristen at Dead River Falls

Eating a Pasty Supper at Presque Isle

Juju with cousins Tippy & Reeses

I'm Back!

Just wanted to let you know that I arrived back in Lafayette safely after being in Upper Michigan for the last week or so. And, sorry, I am on the computer that I have NOT loaded my pictures on to, but I will try to add pictures from my laptop later today.

I had a fabulous time in Michigan. My friends Jon & Kristie got married. It's hard to believe they are actually married now because I can remember knowing Jon when he was probably about 6 or 7! Their wedding was very nice.

I enjoyed being in my parents' church for Sunday's services. I got to hear my brother preach in the evening service.

But the best thing was just getting to spend time with my family and getting to meet my brother's girlfriend Kristen. It's kind of weird to see him "all grown up" and holding hands with a GIRL...but I survived. And I really like Kristen. She is a very sweet girl. And even though we didn't win all of our games of Rook, she played well. Apples to Apples was very fun too. We played that a LOT! But we never got tired of it. It was also fun to pull out old home videos (especially ones like Tim in the "kissing chair") to show Kristen. I miss those days!

Monday we got to spend that hot day out hiking and swimming. Lake Superior is still cold! But by the time we went swimming it actually felt good. That was the day I got a nice sunburn on my back (which started peeling today) and also jammed a finger. I'm hoping that knuckle will soon be back to normal as it's still sore.

Tuesday and Wednesday nights we spent out at Van Riper National Park in my parents' pop-up camper. (My parents, Tim & Kristen, and myself). Kristen and I shared a bed with Juju, who was helpful in getting us up nice and early in the morning! Otherwise, Juju was very good--most of the time. And she traveled very well in the car for 10 hours each way. Get the air conditioning on her and she goes right to sleep!

My youngest sister Sarah had a Luau (open house party to celebrate her move away from home) Thursday night before Tim & Kristen and myself had to leave Friday morning. She baked probably the whole time we were gone camping! Great food and party, Sarah! Sarah is planning to come move down with me on August 15.

I will plan to add pictures later. But I had a great time in the U.P.