Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Baseball is my favorite sport, but things didn't start out that way. I grew up in a family of football fans. As I mentioned in a previous post, I watched the Dallas Cowboys during their heyday when Tom Landry was coach, Roger Staubach was QB, and they were considered not only America's Team but God's Team. Ah, those were the days...except they never did beat the Steelers in the Super Bowl. Terry Bradshaw, Lynn Swann, Franco Harris...I hated them. In spite of how good those guys were, I despised them. I was and still am a Cowboys fan through and through. The hard part for me about being a Dallas fan in those days? Riding to school with Steeler fans. The morning after the last time Pittsburgh beat Dallas in the Super Bowl was the worst. The Steelers at that time were 4-0 when playing in the Super Bowl, and the kids I carpooled with were not mere Steeler fans...their dad was a former Steeler player. They didn't have to say a word about the game, they just rode to school, quietly staring out the window. Ouch...it still stings. (Yes, Charlie and Beverly, if you're reading this, I'm talking about you!)
In the midst of all this great football, I started going to Texas Rangers baseball games. It was my payment for babysitting for my sister. She really got a bargain, but I learned to love baseball. Texas rarely won, but Texas had some fabulous players that were heroes: Buddy Bell, Steve Buschell, Jim Sundberg...the list goes on.
To this day I still love baseball. In my opinion, it is THE all-American sport. There is something beautiful and poetic about a 6-4-3 double play that mere words cannot describe. And while summertime baseball is beautiful, October baseball is amazing. October baseball is an all-together different level of play, and it is awe-inspiring.
I say awe-inspiring, and yet I have never personally experienced post-season play with the Rangers. To see fans at a baseball game wrapped up in coats, gloves, hats, etc., is a foreign concept, something strange and wonderful never experienced in Texas, a truly miraculous event that I get down on my knees and beg God to give to the Rangers. This team is in a league of its own, and I don't mean that in a good way. Let me explain: first you have the farm teams--A Ball, AA Ball, AAA Ball; then there's the Rangers, then there's the rest of major league baseball. The Rangers are the final stepping stone before making it to baseball greatness. Lest you should think me completely out of my mind, do the names Slammin' Sammy Sosa, Ivan "Pudge" Rodriguez, or Alex "A-Rod" Rodriguez ring a bell? All three of these guys played for Texas before going on to bigger and better teams. Sammy Sosa ran head-to-head with Mark McGwire in 1998 to see who would break Roger Maris's home run record. Pudge Rodriguez, a huge fan favorite, was about to be traded when a "SAVE PUDGE" campaign throughout the Dallas-Fort Worth metroplex kept him on the team. He was traded a few years later and has won two World Series since leaving the Rangers (Florida Marlins and Detroit Tigers). Alex Rodriguez--if you pay ANY attention to baseball, you know what's going on with him. The salary he commands boggles the mind. And yet, my poor hapless Rangers remain in the cellar, barely seeing daylight. It's the curse of a Rangers fan.
Thankfully my secondary team--the Red Sox--has what it takes to make it to the championship game. And while some fans see the Sox as the second coming of the Evil Empire (sorry folks, that honor has been reserved for the Yankees), vacationing with friends up on Cape Cod has made me a bit of a Red Sox devotee. The Rangers are still "my" team (perhaps at this point out of pure pity), but I am excited that Red Sox won the Series this year. After all, as Rangers fans eternally cry out, there's always next year.
Saturday, October 27, 2007
I started my birthday off very early by showering and getting ready for the 3rd grade field trip to the Witte (pronounced “witty”) Museum in
Let me add here, in case I’ve never mentioned it, that we live in
In 2nd grade, the kids at my daughter's school study
Right before we left, my daughter wanted to get something from the museum gift shop. When she went after the Webkinz, I had to put my foot down. No way was she going to get yet another Webkinz at gift shop prices, even if it WAS her own money! So she bought some polished rocks, a key chain and a plastic ring. She was, for the most part, pretty happy about her purchases.
I would love to tell you more about my birthday, but this is longer than I thought it would be. So more next time on the rest of my birthday.
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Happy Birthday to me (on Thursday),
Happy Birthday, dear meeeeeeeeeeeeeee (on Thursday),
Happy Birthday to me (on Thursday)!!!
And what am I doing on my birthday? Taking a field trip with a bunch of 3rd graders. Uh, what is wrong with this picture?
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
I've received lots of responses, most via email, to my last post, and amazingly enough, all of it was positive. So thanks everyone for chiming in. And I did hear from
My mind is still reeling from ALL the events of the weekend--not just my grand-scale humiliation--and I have some thoughts to share with specific people. Forgive me if I don't include everyone...
Jamie--thank you for being you. Love the ponytail. Your wife is awesome. So I've inspired you to blog, have I? That could mean one of two things: either you liked what I wrote and want to "go and do likewise", or you thought what I wrote sucked and you think you can do better. I'm going to assume the former and be happy with that. The nice thing about blogging is that Pam Pack and Kate Turabian have absolutely no input.
Bob--you are a riot. I am so glad you and Heidi came Saturday night. It wouldn't have been nearly as fun without you. I also couldn't have gotten through The Revelation without your "help". I owe you. Congrats again on #4.
Dan--Dude, you rock! I have all your albums!!! I have had so much fun reconnecting with you and getting to know your fantastic family. Cheryl is wonderful, and your girls are a joy. I look forward to many more years of professional sporting events, Steve Taylor listening parties, and rubber-band shooting. I NEED MORE COWBELL!
Doug--I talked to Cash about the bike stuff. He said if you pedal really fast and steer around them you won't end up in the trees. And just to ease your conscience, I have completely forgiven you for forgetting we went to the Junior-Senior banquet together. Teresa is wonderful...tell her to call me when she's in town and can do lunch.
Craig--no need to worry about me showing up unannounced at your front door. I've come to terms with things and the torch I've carried all these years is more like a Bic lighter these days. Thanks for being such a good sport and taking it so well. Oh, yeah, Happy Birthday!
Hunter--you have a daughter named Katy and she's really really really smart. It just can't get any better than that! Your wife is precious...she's coming to stay with me for some time. I'll call you when I decide to give her back.
Dana--I am so glad you came! I have missed your sweet smile over the years.Jana--I'm so bummed you didn't/couldn't make it!!!! Yes, I still live in
Philip--CALL ME. RIGHT NOW.
Julia--thanks for the offer (all of them) of your guest room. I just might take you up on that some day. It was good to see you. Thanks for the giggles.
Libby—have I ever told you that you make me think of Jackie O? Please take that as the compliment it was intended to be. I still laugh about you giving me grief about kissing Matt. You are so cool. Glad you’re back in
And last but certainly not least:
Charlie: WHERE ARE YOU?
Now for those of you who gave me all that grief for drinking WATER while the rest of you were consuming tasty adult beverages, please allow me to elaborate.
For me, liquid consumption is a matter of practicality rather than entertainment. I drink because I am thirsty. Most tasty adult beverages require too much effort to enjoy. Beer tastes like what it looks like, and tequila always requires a tongue-shaving the morning after. And believe me, those nicks and cuts just aren't worth the effort. Alcoholic beverages I do enjoy are the ones with the little umbrellas in them, and the cost is just stupid. I can pay $8 for a Bailey's on the rocks, or I can have the whole bottle for $15. (Do I sound like Ford here?) If I have the option of picking either a dip cone or a daiquiri, without hesitation I will take the dip cone every time. Without question I would choose flan over a top shelf margarita. I would rather have Carino's chocolate cake (the one that's heated up with the little toffee flakes in it...mmmmm) a la mode over a Coors Light, Coca Cola Cake over Bud light, peach cobbler instead of Michelob, and a batch of chocolate-Reese's peanut butter chip cookies over anything. Give me liberty, or give me Bennigan's Death by Chocolate. I can't think of a better way to go.
One more thing: Craig has requested that witty banter be volleyed back and forth via email. It gives him something to do while wiling away the hours at work. Dan, Ford, Bob, can one of you be in charge of this?
TCA class of '82, you are awesome! My life would be so different without you all in it. Thanks to everyone for the impact you have made in my life. See you in five years if not sooner!!!
Monday, October 15, 2007
This weekend was my 25-year high school reunion. I attended a small private school (it was small back then, anyway) in the Dallas area, and our graduating class was a whopping 42 people. The title of my post was our class motto. Don't ask me what "rambling" is...it's been too many years. All I know is that you know it when you're doing it. However, it would be much better explained by some of my guy friends. Any volunteers?
From all outward indicators, it was a fabulous weekend. There were a lot of people that I hadn't seen in several years, and it was good to see them all. My biggest regret: I missed seeing my friend Sandy. She was one of my best friends in high school, and I wish I had been better about keeping in touch with her. She came to the first night of the reunion only, and she left before I got there. Sandy, if you're out there reading this, I MISS YOU! And no, I didn't just fall off the edge of the earth again. Your email server considers me to be spam. (Go ahead, Python fans, sing out!) Too many emails with the same subject line, I think. You would think I would learn to pick up the phone and call. If you fix the email thing, I would love to hear from you.
From my perspective, there were two huge questions that dominated the weekend: 1) Where's Phillip? and 2) Who was your secret crush? We still don't know the answer to the first question, but I left him a message on his answering machine letting him know just how unhappy I am, as well as an email in his Inbox. We'll see what kind of excuse he has for missing out. As for the second question, well, that was a question I would have preferred unanswered. It's a funny story, in spite of my great humiliation. Some of the names are being changed to protect the innocent or those who just shouldn't be identified.
Friday night, I went out with three friends after the Homecoming football game (which my team won decisively...was it 62-0?) to continue catching up. Someone posed The Question, and my girlfriend Lisa (a.k.a, The Great Keeper of Secrets) spilled the beans as to who my big crush was (thank you very little). After the class had dinner together Saturday night, there were six of us who decided to continue the party at a burger place across the street from where we had dinner. One of those people was Bob, who had been at the table with me the night before when my big secret had been revealed. Also sitting at the table was a classmate who, after consuming large quantities of liquid courage, decided to bare his soul and inform another classmate that he had been carrying a torch for her for 29 years. The Torchbearer's good friend--we'll call him Craig because, well, that's his name--was ecstatic that this was done, because he had been hearing about it for lo these past 29 years and had grown just a little bit weary of it. The Torchbearer's good friend was also my secret crush that I had had since he walked in the classroom door in 7th grade.
After the discussion about the Torchbearer and the Object of his Affection had run its course, the conversation then took a turn in my direction when Craig--a.k.a., my secret crush--wants to know just who my secret crush is. Surprisingly enough, I had actually given consideration as to whether or not I would ever tell him. It had become a topic of conversation with my 8-year-old daughter last year when she asked me if I had ever had a crush on anyone. I told her yes, but I didn't want to tell her who. She is another Not-So-Great Keeper of Secrets, so that little tidbit of information would be out at the most embarrassing moment possible (which is not too far off from what actually occurred Saturday night). I had decided there was no real good reason to ever speak of my secret crush, so when Craig put me on the spot, I panicked just a bit. Here's how the conversation ensued:
Craig: So Katy, who was your secret crush?
Me (panicking and trying to stall while still appearing calm): You really want to know who my crush was?
Me (closes eyes and shakes head no): Mmmm...no.
Craig (starts guessing): Was it Joe?
Me: NO, he was too mean.
Craig: Was it Fred?
Me: NO! I mean, nothing against Fred, but no.
Craig: Well, he sure had a crush on you.
Me (brightening): He did??? Really?
Craig: Oh, yeah.
Me: Wow...who knew.
At this point, Bob decides to jump in and give Craig a little help.
Bob: Craig, I'm going to help you out here. (gesturing with fork in Craig's direction) Think lower football number...think shorter...think...the person I'm pointing my fork at right NOW.
Me (cringing and hoping beyond all hope that last clue wasn't a dead giveaway) Ouch.
Don't ask me what kind of expression Craig had on his face...I couldn't look. He was thoroughly surprised, however.
Craig: You're kidding. I had no idea. Why didn't you ever say something?
Me: Well, it's not exactly the kind of thing you just walk up & say, "By the way, just thought you should know..." Besides, I figured out that I'm way too old for you. (Craig's wife is five years younger.)
Bob: Wow, Craig, I can't remember the last time I've seen you blush like that.
So there you have it...my great humiliation. Fortunately, Craig didn't run out of the restaurant screaming...well, not very loud, anyway. It was pretty funny to watch it all unfold, even if it was at my expense. I have more thoughts to share, but they will come another day.
Thursday, October 11, 2007
I am the Queen of Good Intentions. You would not believe what a nice person I am, at least in my head. I have plans to bless others out the wazoo, but so much of it never comes to fruition. My follow-through stinks. Not only that, but I am also the Princess of Procrastinators, especially when it's something I dread doing. Recently I had promised my newish neighbor that I would bring a meal over after her daughter's eye surgery. Guess what...I FORGOT! I felt awful about it, and I knew I had to make things right. I kept putting it off, however, because I don't know my neighbor very well and wasn't sure how she would react. I finally sucked it up yesterday and MADE myself go take a casserole and some cookies over as a peace offering. I prayed and prayed that God would give me the words to say, that I hadn't done irreparable damage (I don't know what her spiritual status is), and that He would be glorified. I'm standing at her door, wanting to get this over with yet kind of hoping she won't be home. Not only was she home, she had company. It can't get any worse.
She lets me in and I start babbling my apology. She is very sweet, tells me not to worry about it, and that the baby is doing well. I show her my peace offering, and she is very excited. She says (and this is the way cool part), "Wow, I was just wondering what I was going to do for dinner. The kitchen is pretty torn up because of the work we're having done, so this is perfect." Isn't that cool? God's timing is perfect even when I procrastinate! GOD, YOU ROCK!!!
I am off till probably Sunday or Monday. I will be leaving tomorrow afternoon for Dallas for my 25-year high school reunion. I am very excited. No, really, I am! I'll tell you all about it when I get back. I might even try to post some pictures!
Have a great weekend, all!
Monday, October 8, 2007
When I saw Deb's post last Friday over at The Daily B about it being all my fault, I was very flattered. (Thanks for mentioning me, Deb, and how are you enjoying The Guy I'm Not Dating?) She said I got her thinking about--or rather, rethinking--her favorite books and authors. I couldn't tell her mine, however, because it would mess up my post for today.
I had originally made this one post, but it got too long (translation: I talk too much), so I split it up so as not to overwhelm. So here is my list of my favorite authors, in no particular order (click on each name to go to their website):
- Francine Rivers: "This announcement was brought to you by the U.S. Department of Redundancy Department." This one IS just a given, isn’t it? This is no slight to anyone else, but she is THE standard bearer in Christian fiction. There’s Francine Rivers, then everyone else. She is flat out amazing. She can also be very intense, some of her books more so than others. In addition to Redeeming Love (which is in development to be made into a movie, in case you hadn't heard), I have also read The Scarlet Thread, And The Shofar Blew (cried the entire last third of the book), and her Mark of the Lion series. If you haven’t read this series, talk to me first. There are a few things you should know before you start reading it. Many thanks to my friend Jenster over at Jenster's Musings who helped me get through it! Having said all that, Francine Rivers is one author I have NEVER regretted reading.
- Deeanne Gist: You know, even if
Deeweren’t such a good author, she is such a blast to hang out with in cyberspace! I LOVE Dee, AND her books are wonderful! She has three so far, all historical romances, and I have loved all three: A Bride Most Begrudging, The Measure of a Lady, and Courting Trouble. All of her books are fun and will make you laugh. (Her hero in Lady made me think of Tom Selleck.) Her characters have depth and are very realistic and relatable. If you have never been to Dee’s website, you are missing out. Her blog is very active, as is her new discussion board…you can tell she loves getting to know her readers. It was the highlight of my month when I won an autographed copy of her latest book! WOO HOO!!!!
- Robin Lee Hatcher: Robin’s books are just lovely. Her stories have a very deep emotional feel to them, and God’s grace is a common theme in all of them. The stories start softly or at a low point and crescendo like a magnificent piece of music. I always end up heaving a HEAVY SIGH when I read her books. She’s an established author and has written many books, of which I have read Catching Katie (my favorite), Speak to Me of Love (a very close 2nd place!), Loving Libby, Trouble in Paradise and Return to Me. In Return to Me she did a brilliant job retelling the story of the prodigal son (daughter, in this case) in a modern-day setting. All her books have been wonderful. She also has a great blog that is very thought-provoking and well worth visiting.
- Trish Perry: Trish is another new author—just two books—that has an incredible sense of humor! There were parts in her first book—The Guy I’m Not Dating—that made me laugh so hard I called my mother and read them to her so we could laugh together! Her second book, Too Good To Be True, is a bit more serious but a fun read nonetheless. I feel like an absolute moron that I didn’t pick up on the pun in the title. No, I am not telling…go read it for yourself! You won’t be sorry! You'll get more out of #2 if you read #1 first, but they could easily be stand-alone stories. I love her covers too! Very fun, just like her stories.
- Tamera Alexander: OH, MY. Tamera has written three of the most glorious historical romances you will find anywhere! She is another new author and wrote a series of books called the Fountain Creek Chronicles: Rekindled, Revealed and Remembered. The stories are wonderful, all set in the
in the 1860s. Her characters are deep, and you really get to know them intimately. When characters from book one show up in the other books, it’s like having old friends pop in for a visit. Be sure to have all three books handy so that when you finish one you can start the next. You won’t want to wait! Check out her website and read about how she got started writing…it’s a great story! Colorado Territory
- Sharlene MacLaren: Shar is another author that I have chatted with many times via cyberspace, and I would love her even if I didn’t like her books. But like them I do, which just makes her that much more fun! Her book Through Every Storm is a tough read about a difficult subject…in fact, I hesitated reading it. But I am so glad I did! The story is very realistic and true-to-life, and Shar handled it very well without making things depressing. You should also know that it was also nominated for an ACFW Book of the Year award this year. I’ve also read Loving Liza Jane and Sarah, My Beloved from her Little Hickman Creek series. Both were great reads, and I’m anxiously awaiting the final book in the series, which is due out in March 2008 (mark your calendars!). Shar tells a great story and can always be counted on for a happily ever after ending!
Thursday, October 4, 2007
I have long been a frustrated reader. I always had mixed emotions about finishing a good book. While I couldn’t wait to get to the end of a story to find out what happened, I also hated finishing because I didn’t know what to read next. I’ve always loved going to the library and book stores, but I never knew where to start or what to pick. Over the years I’ve read “Gone With The Wind” at least three times, maybe four. My mother-in-law’s favorite author was Rosemund Pilcher. She gave "Coming Home" to me for Christmas one year, but I kept putting off reading it. The longer I put it off, the more often my mother-in-law asked if I had read it. Just so I could tell her “yes, I’ve read it now please quit asking!”, I finally read it. I’ve been eating a healthy dose of crow ever since. It was a fabulous book, and I immediately started kicking myself for not reading it sooner. I have read two other Rosemund Pilcher books since—“The Shellseekers” & “Gemini”—but “Coming Home” was by far my favorite. Once I had read those, however, I was back in my old dilemma and didn’t know what to read next. Needless to say, I was a bit lost.
In the spring of 2006, my dearest friend came to me, shoved a book in my hands and said, “You MUST read this book!!!” Since my sweet friend doesn’t make recommendations lightly, I took her advice and read the book. It was the most amazing story I had ever read, unbelievably written with incredible depth and detail. It was absolutely breathtaking and left me speechless! The characters were so deep and true-to-life. I had never read anything like it! The book? Francine Rivers’ “Redeeming Love”. I very reluctantly returned the book to my friend and set out not just to buy my own copy, but to see if there were others like it. What I discovered was that not only had Francine Rivers written several other books, but there were a lot of other Christian fiction authors out there, telling deliciously romantic stories with God at the center. I thought I had died and gone to heaven…or at least the library.
Since that time, I have become a romance junkie. I have found author websites and blogs that I devour on a daily basis. (I found out that many authors put the first chapter of their books on their websites so you can “sample their wares”.) I have an ever-expanding library of paperbacks that I have read, re-read, and re-read again, as well as shared with friends. I was doing a pretty good job keeping track of who has what book in my head, but finally had so many of my books loaned out I had to put all my books on an Excel spreadsheet so I didn’t lose track! (Call me obsessive…I'm flattered!) In addition to finding established authors like Francine Rivers, I’ve also discovered some wonderful new authors, too. Next time I will tell you about some of my favorite authors.
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Tuesday, October 2, 2007
My first post isn't about me or my thoughts, but isn't that a good incentive to participate? My husband is a Hall of Fame BMXer (you'll hear more about him in future posts) and loves to do what he can to promote the sport. If you're not sure what BMX is, BMX stands for "bicycle motocross". Have you ever seen those motorcycle races where the racers are flying over mounds of dirt like salmon swimming upstream? That's what BMX is, but on a bicycle instead of a motorcycle. And no, my husband doesn't jump like that...anymore...but I digress. Sports Illustrated for Kids is having a vote for who to put on an upcoming cover of the magazine, and our BMX community is trying to vote a BMXer in. Here's the link to the poll:
Brock Heffron is the BMXer we'd like to see on the cover of SI for Kids. The voting is really close, so Brock could use all the nods he can get.
The other place you can check out BMX stuff is at the American Bicycle Association website. The ABA is one of the sanctioning organizations for BMX, and they are the ones that put together the BMX Hall of Fame. My husband was inducted into the Hall of Fame last fall (again, more on this later), which, I must admit, is really cool in and of itself. But again, I digress.
This is the email he sent out recently about this year's Hall of Fame voting:
Last year, it was one of the greatest moments in my life to be inducted into the ABA BMX Hall of Fame. This year, the voting has begun on the ABA website. If you aren't familiar with the nominees, I would like to share my thoughts for your consideration. Last year, your vote meant everything, and this year it will too!
- Dennis Dain (Pioneer Category) Was one of the most consistent, considerate, and helpful riders in the sport. He won everywhere he went, was on Factory Redline (our co-sponsor) and is truly deserving.
- Greg Grubbs(Racer Category) A skinny kid who took on the top name pros and won. Greg is from Nebraska and was part of the Midwest crowd (like me!) who dared challenge the big dogs and win! Greg was one of the first non-California riders to really dominate the sport with big wins at big races.
- Elaine Holt (Industry) Elaine Started BMX News, which spawned BMX Action. She helped move the bmx movement forward, and without her the sport would have suffered. Her work is the most worthy of all the Hall of Fame nominees in any category.I hope you will take the time to vote at www.ababmx.comSo there you have it! You think your vote doesn't count? Well, in these two places, it does!!! Hall of Fame voting is open to anyone, one vote per person. So jump on in to the fray and let your voice be heard!