It’s not very fun to write about the good stuff, but I have to say that good things have been coming my way. Here are a few of them.

  • The doctor who charged me $50 for a no-show when my car wouldn’t start took the charge off my account
  • I wrecked my car and have been driving a rental--the rental company gave me a free upgrade
  • We found a wonderful painter who is not overcharging me
  • We found a carpet layer who is great and did not overcharge us
  • We found a laborer who is strong and grateful to have work so we can afford him as well
  • We have rented all of our rental property
  • I did not get a lung infection this time when I had my recent allergy attack
  • The dog is housebroken
  • We found a great place to buy appliances new and used
  • I love the classes I am teaching
  • My grandchildren e-mail me every day
  • We have money in the bank
  • Tarzan and I really like each other
  • Direct TV gave me Showtime free for 3 months
  • I find life solutions in the Book of Mormon
  • I have lost 6 pounds

I saw this on Lindsey’s blog (she is my cousin’s daughter) and thought it would be a great way to spend an hour. And, since Lindsey was so kind as to share the instructions for how to create this gem, I thought I would follow suit. Now you too can make a photo mosaic all about YOU!

How to:
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an imagen (I browsed, lots of pictures not just the first page).
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.
d. Copy the mosaic image (right click, save image as -- or just drag image to desktop) to your computer.
e. Upload image to blog and voila!

Here are the questions:
1. What is your first name? Sandi
2. What is your favorite food? Tacos
3. What high school did you go to? St. Johns
4. What is your favorite color? Red
5. Who is your celebrity crush? Brad Pitt (lame, I know)
6. Favorite drink? Virgin Margarita
7. Dream vacation? Italy
8. Favorite dessert? Peach Cobbler
9. What you want to be when you grow up? Writer
10. What do you love most in life? Tarzan
11. One word to describe you? Excited
12. Where do you live? Arizona
(Credits: 1. Pencil Sandi, 2. Taco Bell Mascot Statue, 3. Basilica of St. John, Selcuk -Ephesus, 4. Gizmo, 5. Brad Pitt, leaving Venice, Italy with Angelina Jolie and their children, was in town to promote his new film, 6. If You Like Virgin Pina Coladas... (Day 58), 7. Positano, 8. I Have A Sweet Tooth!, 9. Fifteen accounts of life, death, and everything that interferes., 10. Ahora estoy leyendo, 11. Young At Heart, 12. Tse Bighanilini, 13. Spider of Darkness)

We seem to go through life just doing what we do, trying to be contributing member to society and not expecting any recognition for it. However, every once in awhile, someone says "thank you" and it feels so good. This week I had two thank you's, the first has a funny story (of course, nothing happens to me without a funny story, right?)

Sunday night I was home alone and I had Dottie in the house with me. She was sleeping under my desk and I was working on grading papers when I heard someone knock rather loud on the kitchen door.

I was expecting Tarzan to come home and figured he had his hands full and needed me to open the door for him. I went to the door and yelled out--"who is it?" NO ANSWER. I got a little spooked and peaked out the window-- NO ONE THERE. I looked out the front window-- NO ONE THERE. Yikes, now I was really spooked. Dottie was running around in a panic feeling my emotions.

I turned OFF all the lights in the house and turned ON all the lights outside. NO ONE THERE.

Next, I went into the bedroom to get the hand gun and Tarzan had moved it. So, I looked for the shot gun, Tarzan had moved it. YIKES. And our alarm system is disconnected for the decorating we are doing in the living room. DOUBLE YIKES.

I said a little prayer and sat back down to my computer without opening any doors or questioning further. I felt for some unknown reason safe with Dottie there. She would at least lick them to death if someone broke in.

Later, Tarzan came home and said, "Some of your Church People were here." He responded to the puzzled look on my face by holding up a bag of cookies with a thank you note neatly typed and stapled to it. So, whoever left us cookies -- Thank you they were delish and it warmed my heart, once it quit racing about uncontrollably.

The second thing was a simple phone call from a lady who has moved to California. I helped her off and on for a couple of years and then when she moved, I never heard from her. She just called to thank me for helping her. Believe me, I didn't do that much, but in today's disjointed world even a word of encouragement is a big deal.

Has anyone told you thank you lately?
Did it make you feel warm and fuzzy?
Have you remembered to thank anyone lately?

It is so sad that there are still people in this world who cannot see past the color of your skin. We recently had a business person give us a quote for some work we needed done. When the quote was too high, we looked for another alternative to get the work done. When he did not hear back from us, he send us a rude e-mail accusing us fo using him and wasting his time. He has never met me, only Tarzan and in the e-mail he said among other things---"I am use to working with white people that have integrity, not random ghetto acts of 'take advantage of whomever, whenever.'"

What a huge dissappointment to have someone be so small and unthinking that they can say such cruel words with no remorse.

I pray for good things to happen to me.
I was in a wreck; the other guy was on the phone, and would not stay for the police. The good thing: I have insurance and they consider it a no-fault accident and will cover everything, including a rental car. It will only cost me the $500 deductible.

I pray for good things to happen to me.
We took the trash to the Gila Bend dump and drove the trailer over the edge and cut a big gash in the trailer tire. The good thing: It was going to cost us $150 to get a new one, but Tarzan talked the guy into $32.

I pray for good things to happen to me.
Tarzan has been the victim of identity theft. The good thing: The government has put in place a path to follow to get it corrected.

I pray for good things to happen to me.
I have had a migraine for two days. The good thing: This only happens a couple of times a year, it used to happen twice a month.

I pray for good things to happen to me.

This weekend I realized, that I do not just casually experience life. Rather, I see events. I see big happy occasions, and devastating sad occasions. I see happy things as more than passing moments, but stories to tell, stupid things as funny or irritating and story worthy. I also see the actions of others as great or even pitiful. With that said, let me tell you about fishing with Tarzan and the boyz.

I had a headache for three days last week and needed some true down time, when I didn’t think about (in alphabetical order) car trouble, children, church, cleaning house, dogs, etc., grandchildren, health, heat, money, redecorating, rental property, work.

Tarzan was going fishing with the boyz this weekend, so I asked if I could go. I said, “I either need to go away with you this weekend or I need to get a hotel and watch old movies while I eat ice cream and pizza.” He said I could go.

I went out to get in the truck after packing up a few things, putting together four meals to cook for the group and packing some kitchen items to cook with. He had put everything in the CAR not the PICKUP with no plan as to where we would sleep. I threw in two sleeping bags and an air mattress.

We started out at 6:00 p.m. and Shirley, his GPS system, told him we had 300 MILES to go. I thought we were going to Blythe, about 1 ½ hours away. First choice, get up tight because I have a five hour drive ahead and knowing we won’t get to the campsite before midnight? No problem, I have turned off the world, sit back and relax.

We do travel well together and when we arrived at Moreno Valley, he pulled right into a motel and got us a room so we could get some rest rather than trying to find the boyz in the dark. Good move, Tarzan. 4:00 a.m. wake up call, we took it and fell back to sleep. 6:00 a.m., up and at ‘em. We rushed around, jumped in the car and called Al to tell him we were about 15 minutes away from the lake and ask how to find him.

Al, was at home in bed.

They had not gone out the day before as planned.No rush now, a little Walmart shopping, they are the only store open at that hour, and we drove on out to the lake, got the best spot available in the camp ground and cooked breakfast. Here is my kitchen cupboard.

Here is breakfast, yes, that is a pound of bacon, we expected the boyz to show up before we finished breakfast. When they didn’t the two of us managed to eat the whole pound by ourselves. Oh, yes, and that is the pan that snagged Tarzan. He says he married me for love, but I saw his eyes light up when he say me great skillet.

The boyz showed up around 2:00 p.m. So, we just relaxed until they came. Here is Tarzan playing with his fishing gear.

Then the boyz showed up. Al and Lt.

Al asked if I was ready to fish, but I made it perfectly clear that I was not there to interfere. I was there to relax, I would not be getting on the boat today. They took off with a whirl of excitement while I settled into a day of doing NOTHING. It was so wonderful. Here is what I did all day. Sorry about the bird poop, see my Kindle, Armand is his name, I have actually given him a name label now so I will quit changing his name, see the iPod, see the crochet, see the snacks, you can almost see the lotion and the purple container is the nail clippers so I could cut and file my fingernails, awe, the joy of nothingness.

Oh, yes, and I napped--a lot.

It started to get dark and the boyz didn’t return, so I decided to cook. I really should have taken a picture of the beans. I had made a pot of chili beans for dinner before leaving home. It sat in the sun all day on the ground. I picked up the pot to begin heating it up and OH MY GOODNESS, it was full of ants doing the backstroke. I skimmed the ants out thinking a little protein never hurt anyone and I wouldn’t even tell the boyz, got the cook stove fired up and set the beans on the stove. When I took the lid off the thing was bubbling and it wasn’t from the heat of the fire – it had gone bad in the heat of the day, I guess that is what attracted the ants. Dumped the whole thing in the trash and began cooking the pork chops and potatoes. Everything was cooked and the boyz finally came back. It was completely dark, they had stayed until “the last dog died” to leave the lake. As they got out of the truck, Al said, “We would have been here sooner, but we had to wait for Lee to come back from wherever he went all day.” I said, “Hey, don’t get out of the truck making excuses when you have been out having fun.” Joking is part of being friends with the boyz. I can hold my own.

Had I not cooked dinner these three boyz would have gone to bed hungry, they were exhausted. They snarfed down the dinner I had cooked, and went straight to bed. We slept in the car, he on the reclining passenger side and me in the backseat. Thank goodness for Excedrin PM. At about 11:00 p.m. the spot next to us had a group of young adults move in. They set up bright lights, loud RAP music (mostly about rape and murder) and began to laugh, talk, play games (of questionable value), drink alcohol and laugh-loud. I asked them to turn the music down once, but it was soon back up as loud as ever and they didn’t stop until 3:00 a.m.

When we got up at 5:00 a.m., I turned on the Andrew’s Sisters mixed with Nat King Cole and a bunch of church songs. My music wasn’t near as loud as theirs, but I figured it was irritating enough. We then commenced to fix a breakfast feast of bluegill caught the day before. The boyz cooked the fish, I cooked eggs and hash browns and we had some of my good bottled peaches. We had a wonderful morning, even though I was eating the fish and saw a funny looking bone and threw it out into the field then suddenly realized it was the temporary cap from my tooth. Lt. did a wind direction and projectile velocity and walked right out into the field and found it. Isn't that amazing

I must say a word about the young adults. They were clean cut kids, obviously had money (or a lot of debt) and they had no clue what life is all about. There was inappropriate activity going on over there, inappropriate talk, inappropriate music and I could go on. The park has a strict rule of no alcohol anywhere in the park. These young folks were having beer for breakfast by the time we got ready to go and they were going to go out on the lake with their jet skis.

We packed up and jumped my car (that is another whole story I won’t bore you with about the day before). As we drove out of the campsite to go to the lake, Tarzan stopped at the park ranger booth and told them about our neighbors. He explained that since we are old folks, we just hunkered down and tried to ignore them, but it was a perfect setting for a serious confrontation. If we had been a young family with babies, he would have (he didn’t tell this to the ranger) taken his shot gun over and blown up the radio like Clint Eastwood and then gone back to bed. There was something about this group of kids that haunted Tarzan and I, we mentioned them several times over the next 24 hours, wondering how far astray they were and if they had a chance at happiness with the path they were obviously taking.

Then we fished.
Here come the boyz to get me.

Here we go.

Al at the helm.
Tarzan seriously fishing.

The first fish caught.
Lt. always catches fish. The fish see him coming and all get together and say, “Hey, Lt. is here, who wants to go first?”
Al caught a few, Lt. caught a few, but sadly, today Tarzan never caught one.
I napped and read. It was great.
We packed up our rods and left about 2:00 p.m. and headed home. What a fun, relaxing two days, I am completely rejuvenated. Come on world, I’m ready to take you on again.

After the big rains we had over the past week, I went down the hill this morning and saw these strange creatures growing up along the edge of our property.

Any idea what they are? The only thing I am sure of is that they don't look like mushrooms.

I was at Sharon's desk and she had a Starbucks Plastic cup with the cutest crocheted holder on it to catch that liquid that runs all over your desk when you have a cold glass of any liquid.

She told me her grandmother crocheted it and she has not been able to duplicate the pattern. I told her I could get the pattern off of it and she carefully put it in a plastic bag and gave it to me to take just over night.

I was able to get the pattern and made one last night for my Fresh and Easy water bottle. Isn't it cute? I am going to make one the size of a soda can next.

Here it is, I L-O-V-E it. My hand didn't get cold while I held my Ginger Ale to drink it.