Friday, July 31, 2009

Don't stop believing!

We got a new bed a couple months ago. As you might recall, I fell in love with this bedding. But it was really expensive, so I was waiting for it to go on sale. A little over a week ago I noticed the price was marked down. But I hesistated, and it sold out in less than a day (even the sale price made me balk a little). BUT...if you really love something...I think you should invest in it. I could not find anything I liked as much as this, neither in bedding stores nor online. And there are A LOT of duvet covers to choose from.

Yesterday I was complaining about it on facebook. My girls Andy and Jo both encouraged me to keep hope, to try to find it. I'm a terrible decision maker, so when I loved this from first glance, I knew I had to have it. I think Andy and Jo must have known that about me. Or maybe all women are like that...?

Anyway, I didn't think there was any harm calling around to my local Pottery Barn stores, even though I thought it was a catalog-only item. I talked to a lovely woman named Barb at Pottery Barn in the Galleria and after a short hold, she told me they had one king duvet cover left, but it was the floor model. If I wanted it, she could sell it to me without packaging for 20% off. Um, yeah, Barb! Here's my credit card number!

Tomorrow I will wash, press, and display my beautiful new bedding. And to the women in my life who reminded me that the universe listens, I thank you.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Quote of the Day

Begin to think of yourself as a soul with a body
rather than a body with a soul.

- Dr. Wayne Dyer

Monday, July 27, 2009


Me with my new appendage. Sorry for anyone who has to be around me for the forseeable future. I'll likely take your picture. For practice. Raise your hand if you're getting sick of me talking about my new toy. Oh, for heaven's sake, Laura, put yours down!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Guilty pleasures.

The night we had burgers, I added homemade onion rings. I thinly sliced three large yellow onions and used Don's Chuckwagon Onion Ring Mix. Great vacation treat that may or may not make it into my home menu plan. :D

Also, I made two batches of my friend Dana's recipe guacamole. My mouth is watering just thinking about that stuff. I wasn't a huge guac fan until I fell in love with hers. Treat yourself!


4 avacados, mashed
juice from 1/2 a lime
1 1/2 tsp minced garlic
1/3 red onion, finely diced
1 - 2 jalepeno, seeded and diced
2 - 3 roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
5 - 6 shakes of tabasco
1/2 - 1 c shredded cilantro
salt & pepper to taste

Mix avacado, lime juice, garlic, onion, jalenpeno, tabasco. Season with salt & pepper to taste. Stir in tomato and cilantro. Enjoy!

At Shannon's Request.

These are taken with my old camera and my new one. Can you tell which is which?

Friday, July 24, 2009

Vacation is almost over...

...and I'm ready. It's been fun, but I'm ready for my home, my schedule, my time, my life. I guess that's good.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009


I'll still post some pictures here during my vacation - my faves - but to see all of them, you can visit here:

Leanne's Photo Site

Please note: I have uploaded 277 photos from the first four days of vacation. I have deleted at least that many. There are bound to be repeats, and my subjects are getting bored. I'm having a blast though!

Status Updates


...finished that bag of Twizzlers as fast as she thought she would.
...loves guacamole, but wishes avacados were calorie-free. going to Itasca State Park tomorrow.
...loves her new camera.
...'s photography subjects are getting sick of pictures.
...doesn't care.
...misses Laura's bed. Wait. I don't think that was it.
...misses Mindi's blog. Heehee.
...feels slightly guilty about having internet access. Slightly. over her guilt. enjoying vacation!
...will fill you in later...

Let's face it.

Most of this is about them:

Monday, July 20, 2009

And this one...

...for the fisherman among us, the 12 year old.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Todays' Photos

Perfect. Today was a walk with my husband, brunch, beach, kayaking, reading, photos (photos, photos, photos), steak dinner, ice cream. Now we're heading to play some dominoes with the folks! Hope your week is as spectacular!

Saturday, July 18, 2009


Ha! The up north resort has wi-fi! I wouldn't have even thought to check, but Cory did. So here I am. :) I'm going to try to stay away from FB, but I wanted to share some pictures from my new camera. I am madly, deeply, insanely in love with this camera. I'll try to share some more as the week goes on...

Friday, July 17, 2009

For the next seven days...

...I'll be on vacation. And since I'll be facebook-less, I thought I'd share with you a few of the likely Status Updates I'll be thinking of and would post if I had the internet:

Leanne... done with that bag of cherry twizzler bites. eating. Again.
...went fishing with Cole (huh? you?).
...built a bigger sandcastle than Matthew.
...reading her second book. eating. Again. properly sunkissed!
...misses Facebook.
...filled her 4gb memory card. Again.
...wishes she had picnik.
...misses you.

Have a great, blessed week. Muah.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

My new Canon XSi...

Here it is. In all of its boxed glory! I'm not even opening it until we get to our vacation destination, lest it take up all my packing/grocery-shopping/cleaning time! I have a feeling I won't be able to put it down once it's in my eager hands! When I get back, though, I'm going to have some glorious photos to share. I promise. Shannon challenged me to take the same picture with this one and my old one because she's curious what all the hype is about. Prepare to be amazed, Shan!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

And then, inevitably... world of friends collided. Get this:

Laren lives in New Mexico. She is my friend Mindi's next door neighbor, and Mindi's FB friend. She has a friend Laura that she went to college with. She saw Laura on my FB friends list and sent me a message to ask me how I knew her. Laura and I met online in an Expecting Club when I was pregnant with Matthew (she has a little boy born the same time.) So, the only logical thing to do was to become Laren's facebook friend. (Kudos to you if you were able to follow all of that!)

Astounding. Lovely. Add it to my List of Blessings.

Nutella, please.

I have a moderate addiction to this stuff. I'm working on it. Kind of. But in order to fully rid myself of it, I'd like to pass it on to you. Try it on french bread. Or at Punch Pizza in a Nutella pizza. Or on pancakes. But not on Giada's crust. Or just scoop it right out of the jar. It's worth it!

Monday, July 13, 2009

The Spiritual Series: Part II: Service

I didn't ask to be born in 1977 in America, in a conservative, middle class, stable family. It was a stroke of luck; a gift from God. It is my responsibility as an adult to use that privilege for good.

Continuously, I am overwhelmed by the struggles of people. I watch women in Iran marching on the streets for their rights (and being beaten, or shot and killed in some cases). I think of the mothers who, not so many years ago, died in childbirth before great maternity care. I think of the mothers around the world who struggle to give their families food, and my greatest struggle is whether or not to spend the money to build a deck on my already-pleasant home. I am humbled.

I am a Christian. I believe that Jesus Christ, in addition to being the savior, was an empathetic, amazing man. He taught love and kindness to all. He preached that we should take care of our neighbors, to feed and clothe our brothers. (Read Matthew 25:31-46). I am a follower of Jesus Christ, a Christian, and it is our responsiblity to take care of others.

In a present tense scenario, I think we should support our goverment in the quest to provide health insurance for all. There is no perfect plan; we are not perfect people. But when I think of the children, the parents, the elderly, the poor...struggling, dying without proper health care in the United States of America in 2009, I am reminded that Jesus asked us to give. Not to clutch our wealth to ourselves, but to give cheerfully. Treat all of humanity with love. (Read Romans 12)

I spend hours and hours thinking on current events. In spite of my busy life, I find myself feeling passionate about these things. I am challenged by those who think I cannot be "Christian" and "Liberal." I have been working through this in my head for many days now, and I think that if Liberal is what Webster says "a political philosophy based on the belief in progress, the essential goodness of the human race, and the autonomy of the individual and standing for the protection of political and civil liberties" then, yes, I am Liberal. And now, in this babbling blog entry, I have peace with that.

I'd love your input. How does service factor into your life? How does the word of God speak to you and how you define service? I know that I am far less than perfect, but I also know that God made me to be exactly who I am and I continue to seek His guidance as I seek answers. May we all love our neighbors as ourselves. (Matthew 36:39)

Sunday, July 12, 2009


I decided to go to Michigan about a week before I left. Most of you know I am not spontaneous. I like my schedule. But I've really wanted to go see my sisters and I'm happy I did. We ended up coming home Saturday afternoon instead of Sunday morning, and it was a fantastic trip.


- Unexpected stops with the four year old. He had to pee when we got to Ashland and by the time we got through the town (less than 10 minutes) we had to find a tree on the side of the road because he was miserable again. Then I took the juice cup away!
- The challenging drive. The four year old was miserable in the car. Needed to know every five minutes when we were going to be there. And without another adult to occasionally deflect that question, it started to feel like nails on a chalkboard.
- The kids' happiness. On Friday, Jack said, "I go home, Mommy." But then I asked him if he wanted to go throw rocks in the lake, "YEAH! I go throw rocks in lake!!" Good enough; easy to please.
- Watching Cole become a Yooper. He did not want to leave. He's such an outdoorsman, I guess it's no surprise. But after his first sauna/swim (he even pronounces it correctly now! Sow-na!), and pasty for lunch on Saturday, there was no going back. Someone send him a Yooper bumper sticker, please.
- Seeing my family. It's a crazy bunch, but those neices and nephews are so stinkin' cute. I miss them already.
- Sedar Bay (where the above photos were taken). My grandparents live on Lake Superior and this picture was taken at their home. It's the most wonderful, beautiful place on earth. God's country, indeed.
- Sandfly bites. (No, I didn't say these would all be GOOD highlights.) I am very itchy.
- Peg. She's the only friend I got to see up there due to our really packed schedule, but I loved every minute of it. How come some friendships only get better? And ours was so good to begin with. I love you, Peg!
It was a long, tiring drive. It was a lot of juggling around the three boys solo. And while I won't do it husband-less again, this one goes in the No Regrets folder. God speed, Michigan, thanks for having us!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Me and the Three...

...are heading to Michigan for the weekend. I've never done a road trip by myself with the kids. I've planned them, but backed out twice. It's been too overwhelming for me. But now, I have appropriately packed swimwear, clothing, bug spray, sweatshirts, sunblock, food, carfood, drinks, DVDs, coloring stuff, and extra advil for me...heehee...and we're all set! I plan to have a wonderful weekend with my family and hopefully see some friends along the way!

Have a great, safe weekend, all!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

My neighbors

We live in a cul-de-sac so we have the priviledge of seeing our neighbors frequently, since our front yards primarily face each other. I love these people. They have taken care of us over these past few years, and I am grateful for them. We do things together several times a year: Hibernation Brunch in February, the Fifth of July party in July, National Night Out, and Garry and Tonneli's Thanksgiving dinner. We cherish these moments as well as impromptu wine parties in our driveway, community clean-ups (the May storm last year, for example), the pranks, the laughs, the conversation.

I feel very blessed to have landed here!

Friday, July 3, 2009

Happy Independence Day!

In the spirit of the holiday, here is my favorite pasta salad (thanks to Kriz, slightly adjusted to my liking.)

Amish Macaroni Salad (I describe it as potato salad with noodles instead of potatoes):

1 lb macaroni, cooked according to package directions
4 hard boiled eggs
1 small onion, chopped
3 stalks celery, chopped
1 small red pepper, chopped
2 tbsp dill pickle relish
2 c creamy salad dressing*
3 tbsp yellow mustard
1/4 c sugar
2 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
3/4 tsp celery seed**

Stir together mayo, mustard, relish, sugar, white vinegar, salt, and celery seed. Add cooked noodles, eggs, onion, celery, and red pepper.

Chill and serve.

*I use light mayo or olive oil mayo
**I've never used this