July 2007


I read an interesting diet tip taken from one of Oprah’s favorite diet-help books:  Take one of Listerine’s breath strips to help stop food cravings.

When I was a kid, we had outdoor kittens every summer.  We always had to use worm medicine on them; seems like that’s one of the things you had to do with kittens.

One time, Mom bought the medicine and gave it to our kittens.  Maybe she read the directions wrong and gave them too much, I don’t know, but we were sitting in lawn chairs talking about something or other when suddenly one of the kittens leaped up and began dashing about like a possessed demon!  Crashing into the legs of the lawn chairs, zipping here and there—bam!  bam!

That’s what I felt like when I tried the Listerine Cure.

I mean, is that stuff legal??!!  The only way I can figure it stops cravings is that because when you die, it’s true you have no more cravings then.  I dashed about the house with my mouth open wide, saliva pooling in my mouth…are you supposed to swallow when you eat one of those??

Must be why the packaging is so cute.

I haven’t eaten anything since.




Four or five times a day I don a hat and go outside to tackle my mortal enemy.

(the hat is for another enemy not covered in this post)



Although his beauty can be astonishing, each one that goes down is a moment of triumph.



I don’t REAALLLLLLY “murder” them; I just collect them and assist them to go “swimming.”



It can be an enjoyable game.  Firstly, there’s Find the Beetle, which is a pastime similar to hunting for Easter eggs in the grass.  Then there’s Cup Toss, a game of skill to catch the beetle as he drops to the ground OR flies off into the air.  I must do this while not disturbing the rest of the plant, or OTHER beetles will flee before it’s their turn for The Big Swim.

I very much enjoy the other creatures I see in the plants; they are numerous, and so different from each other.

A spider that has caught a butterfly


The butterfly’s happy brother

A caterpillar

A bee with orange legs

Another butterfly

My son thebenedictmock says I need to start listing Beetle-Hunting as my hobby!



Just returned home from a 3-day “mini vacation” for the 25th anniversary–what a difference a 3-day break can make! 

We did all sorts of things we don’t usually do.  First, we stopped at a local marsh.

Then we continued on to our rental cabin.

We did a lot of walking, on trails

and by water

and even rented a surrey (my legs were too short to peddle it).

My husband did some wine-tasting

and we ate at many restaurants we had never been to (such as Outback Steakhouse and Olive Garden)—we chose them off the latest poll of Top Full-Service Restaurant Chains.

We spent time reading

took a pontoon boat tour,

and even re-decorated our car!   (just kidding!)

We made a lot of memories and added some private jokes to our repertoire!


By the way, the hymn that was sung at our wedding was Be Thou Exalted.  The words were written by Fanny Crosby, which remained unnoticed until Alfred Smith wrote a tune for them.  Alfred Smith, a hymnist who had worked with Billy Graham, spent a week at my college leading us in very rousing and wonderful singing, including this song; I bought his hymnbook at that time and it is the 5th hymn in that book (Victorious Life Hymns).



25th Anniversary
I have a good friend who
often brings flowers into the church for Sunday service.  This morning I was amazed to see what she had
brought in:  the same kind of flowers my
husband and I had for our wedding—pink gladolias.  They were BEAUTIFUL.

I knew there had been a death
in her family, and I assumed these were from the funeral.

I whispered to one of my
sons and told him about the coincidence with excitement.

When my second son sat down,
I explained to him too!  Maybe she would
let us take them home, in honor of our 25th anniversary this week,
do you think?

When my husband sat down, I
pointed it out to him!  And he said…”I
bought them for you, Dear!”

Oh, my.

We had the rare occasion of
special music today in church, and…she sang the same song we had sung at our

How wonderful IS that,