Wednesday, December 3, 2008

I can now legally drink alcohol.

I can now legally carry a concealed weapon.
But really I can't afford to. And so far, I haven't tasted any alcohol that I've enjoyed. When you think about it, if we trust/expect eighteen-year-olds to be able to vote for leaders for our country and state, if we expect sixteen-year-olds to be able to drive safely and correctly and not kill other people through stupid driving, why can't those kids be able to decide whether or not they should drink or carry a gun? Unfortunately, most sixteen and eighteen year old American kids today aren't responsible enough to be driving or voting, but I don't think government restriction will make them any more responsible. Most likely it will do the opposite.

Oh well! I had a pretty good birthday. It involved chocolate, high-speed internet, and the BBC production of "Bleak House". So sad! We're eagerly awaiting the last CD from Netflix. Our anticipation really gets dragged out with our current Netflix plan. During the middle of the movie a bat flew right into our living room and startled us all! Dad had to kill it (which was too bad) while we all hid in the bathroom. So there you have it! My birthday.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving food

Happy Thanksgiving! I'm in the mood for truffles, so I'm off to try this recipe:

1/2 C. butter, softened
2 1/3 C. confectioner's sugar
1/2 C. cocoa
1/4 C. whipping cream
1 1/2 t. vanilla

Cream butter in large mixer bowl. Combine 2 1/2 cups confectioners' sugar and the cocoa; add alternately with Cream and vanilla to butter. Blend well. Chill until firm.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Book Review: “My sister’s Keeper” By Jodi Picoult.

Our local book club picked this book to be “book-of-the-month”. It’s a provoking book, and I think Mrs. Piccoult meant it to be. I have to say, I DID NOT LIKE IT. I emphasized that because in all the reviews I read I found nothing but flattery and praise for Mrs. Picoult’s “beautiful, heartbreaking, controversial, and honest book.” Please, does anyone else NOT like this book? “Known for writing novels with provocative themes centered on family conflict and difficult moral choices, Jodi Picoult presents the story of a child whose sole reason for existence is to assure a genetic match for her terminally ill sibling.” You’d think with such “provocative themes” more people would disagree with her books! In talking about morals and ethics, none of the reviews seem to address what IS right and wrong. Mrs. Piccoult doesn’t seem to address it clearly herself. I think she does it fairly subtly. I feel like the whole book was meant to be propaganda.

In short, the story line of “My Sister’s Keeper” is this:
“Conceived in vitro, 13-year-old Anna Fitzgerald has decided to sue her parents to stop them from using her as "spare parts" for her older sister, Kate, who suffers from leukemia. After years of having her bone marrow and blood used to keep Kate alive, Anna now refuses to donate a kidney and strives for her own personal freedom. She hires lawyer Campbell Alexander to represent her, even as her own mother, a former civil defense attorney, fights her in court.”

These are the main issues in the book:
• A “Designer Baby”. Basically cloning. Is it possible? Is it legal? Biblical?
• A minor donating blood, bone marrow, and maybe even a kidney. Possible? Legal?
Parental rights. Anna has to sue to get her parents to stop taking her body parts? Possible?

Probably the biggest issue I feel Mrs. Piccoult is arguing against is Parental Rights. In her story she portrays it so that the reader feels that the parents should have absolutely no right to make decisions in their daughter’s life, because in the story they are, in a way, abusing her. I think what a lot of people would take away from this is that parents have too much control over their children’s lives. I feel that’s what Mrs. Piccoult wants people to understand from this book.

I am totally for parental rights. God put parents in charge of their children’s welfare. The idea of no parental rights comes from the liberals, saying government should be in charge of all children. I received this email in response to some questions about medical laws and parental rights:

“It is against federal law for parents (or anyone) to force children to donate blood or any other form of human tissue. According to The National Health Act 61 of 2003, Section 56(2), human tissue can not be taken from a person without written consent from the PERSON. The minimum age of consent is 18; anyone under 18 cannot donate organs or tissue. I'm not entirely sure about blood donations. According to the Human Tissue Act 65 of 1983 section 18(aa), a child the age of 14 can consent to donate blood (with a reliable witness). I highly doubt that blood or tissue would ever be taken from a child without their consent, except for the gravest circumstances.

Therefore the premise of this book is rather far-fetched, and I'm not sure it can be rationalized. Federal law often requires parental consent for minors undergoing medical operations not so that the parent can control the child, but so they can protect him! If a child does not want an operation, the parents are there to back him up. If the doctor wants to force something on a child that the parents believe is harmful, again they are there to protect him.

Honestly, the entire premise actually verges on child abuse. This girl was 'created' simply to meet someone else's needs which means that her human rights are not being preserved. Is it not abusive to create a specific baby simply to take from it for the sake of someone else? In my personal opinion, the conception of this child constitutes sufficient child abuse that the parents would no longer have rights to that child.”
(As far as I can tell, “designer babies”, basically cloning, is not yet possible on such a level)

The Red Cross says that to give whole blood, platelets or plasma you must:
• be at least 17 years old (16 for whole blood in Iowa, Kansas and Nebraska with parental consent)
• weigh at least 110 lbs.
• be in good health
Those younger than age 17 are almost always legal minors (not yet of the age of majority) who cannot give consent by themselves to donate blood. (Each state determines its own age of majority, which can be different for different activities.).

And as far as kidney donations go:
“In 2004 the FDA approved the Cedars-Sinai High Dose IVIG therapy which eliminates the need for the living donor to be the same blood type (ABO compatible) or even a tissue match. Since medication to prevent rejection is so effective, donors need not be genetically similar to their recipient. Most donated kidneys come from deceased donors, with some coming from living donors.”

So it wouldn’t really be necessary to take a kidney from a minor, and it’s not legal for minors to donate blood or organs. The whole story seems to be totally unrealistic, not at all based on truth, and an attempt to sway people’s minds against Biblical principles. I wish people really would think about these issues, and not just digest the latest novel on the shelf and then base their worldview on it.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

We learn from our mistakes. Hopefully.

A mistake we made was to allow an eleven year old to campaign with us. He was our youngest volunteer, and he would just not stop talking. I'm not in any way close to saintly when it comes to patience with younger children, and so when it was my turn to take him in my car, my already frazzled nerves gave way and I told him and everybody else in the car(though they couldn't hardly talk anyway) that we were going to have a moment of silence for everyone who had died in car accidents today, and that moment would end when I said it did. It worked for a little while.

The next day, he was in a different car. Mistake! I should have kept him with me. The driver of the car accidentally locked her keys in the car. While they were waiting for help to arrive, this boy without the driver's knowledge, tried to pick the lock of the trunk by sticking leaves and sticks in the lock. So when the driver did finally get the car keys, the car's trunk wouldn't open, and all their literature for distributing was in the trunk. It was one big mess. I feel really bad for the driver of the car, and I hope they can get their trunk fixed without much trouble.

District 39 is now a better place to live

Thanks to those who voted Beau McCoy into office.

The Campaign for Beau McCoy:
We left early Saturday morning- no one should have to get up as early as we did, but we had to get to Omaha by 7am. Saturday, our first day, we had about twenty volunteers going door-to-door doing lit drops and some sign waving at the big intersections during rush hour. That evening a few of us did phone calls and when we stopped making calls at 7pm(There was a football game starting then) we were all worn out. But the dollar theater is right next to the Republican office, and the temptation to see "Wall-e" was too much to resist, so we went to see that and didn't get to bed until late. Our hosts graciously took us to church on Sunday and we tried to rest up, but it's hard to do that when you're in someone else's house. Monday morning we were back at it again, with more sign waving and lit drops. We had about ten people on that day. Tuesday- the big day- was unreal. By this point Jen and I were wearing down from lack of sleep, lots of exercise, and the stress of organizing the volunteers. We had roughly twenty people that day, and we did even more sign waving and lots more phone calls. Not as many lit drops, though, because it almost wasn't worth it at that point. The weather was a campaigner's dream, perfect temperatures and sunny. Tuesday was the only day we had weather trouble. It was very windy, and that slowed us down a bit. We quit sign waving at 7pm and then headed over to the victory party. And this time it actually was a victory party, because sometime around 10pm the governor called and congratulated Beau McCoy, District 39's newest State Senator. Whew! I know we had a part in this victory, and I am so glad he won.

We went back to our host's house and tried to sleep, and eventually exhaustion took over and we did get some rest. Next morning we left to go home. Kind of anti-climatic. The rest of the day was spent re-adjusting to real life, thinking, wait, we won- and now it's over? Aghhh! And we were all still pretty worn out. Jen and I talked about the campaign and all the mistakes we made, and how we would like to do it better next time, but now we have to wait two whole years. We feel like we made a lot of mistakes. The fact that we are now looking forward to having a liberal Democrat in the President's office makes me feel like we need to do even more work, starting now, to get Christian men into office.

So there's how we spent our days leading up to the Election:
Doing action-packed and educational volunteer service.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

I did have time to visit another cemetery last week...

What a beautiful day. But so very windy.

It was German too. Go figure.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


I came home from Lincoln on Friday. On my way home I wanted to make a stop at Cane's, a fast food restaurant known for its deliciously unhealthy chicken fingers. I wanted to take some home to Jen because she loves their food. As far as I know, there aren't any Cane's in Omaha and only one in Lincoln. But on my way to Cane's, I got very very turned around(LOST). Before last week, I hadn't done any driving in Lincoln at all, but now I know almost all the major streets and areas, because in the week I was there I got lost three times. When I finally got to Cane's, I had no idea how to get to the interstate, so I just headed in what I thought to be the right direction, and I eventually got to the right street. But I felt so bad about all the gas I wasted getting lost- it almost made stopping at Cane's not worth it. With that added driving time, the drive home took almost two hours. I was so tired I had to stop, so I decided to stop at a cemetery on the way. It's been on my list of goals for a while to stop and visit that cemetery before we move, so I am glad I finally went there.
It was kind of sad that the cemetery isn't being properly taken care of- there were several stones that were broken or sinking, and in one case the caretakers had just stuck the broken stone in a pile of concrete.

This cemetery is mostly German.

Who do you look to when you are lost?

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Out and About in the City

I've spent the past week in our Nebraska Capitol city of Lincoln helping out a pregnant lady. She has five very sweet children, and her condition is such that she can't do any hard work. Yesterday she had me get out the kids winter clothes from the basement, and carry them upstairs to the bedrooms- it took about four trips up and down! When that was done, I got down three garbage bags of clothes from the top shelf of the closet, and then had to put them back up at the end of the day. I had to stand on a bar stool to reach! So I actually got my exercise yesterday. Today I just cleaned wooden blinds- there's really no efficient way to do that.

I've been staying with another friend at night. I have so enjoyed having a whole huge bathroom all to myself. It's so luxurious! In return for room and board I've been doing some work for her, too. When I get back tonight she wants me to get out her winter clothes too. At least I won't have to carry them up two staircases- she only has one.

I've been doing a lot more driving in the city than I've ever done before, and I doesn't stress me out anymore, but I've gotten lost twice. Navigation by street names rather than by landmarks is hard to get used to.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Highlights from vacation:

We got to see old houses, older than anything we have in NE. They were beautiful!

We went to the new Creation Science museum in KY. It's expensive, but very well done.

I was able to spend an hour in the Lexington, KY cemetery. It's beautiful and rich in history.

We saw family in Ohio that we hadn't seen in ten years.

Lowpoints of vacation:

We were in tents. Jen and I shared one and everyone else had the other.

It rained, and everything including us got wet

I had to cook over an open fire from limited supplies

The bathrooms were always a long ways away

We had to set up and take down camp more than five times.

There is the short version of our two week vacation.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

Vacation does not mean you will have time to relax

In the last two weeks I've been to Iowa, Indiana, Illinois, Ohio, Kentucky, and Missouri, and now I am finally home. My favorite part of our two week vacation was visiting the Lexington KY Cemetery. I'll post more about it later- we're still unpacking. When we got home we found that our water distiller had leaked all over the floor and it had gotten moldy and ruined the wood flooring. Ugh. And tomorrow Dad is being ordained as an Elder in our Church. There's so much to do!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Rainy days

It's been a turbulent spring season for parts of NE, but all the big storms missed us and we only had normal rainstorms in our area.
Raining in the sun- can you see it?
Now, though, spring is over and we are getting into the hot weather of July. We are going to be tent camping for two weeks at the end of this month. I fervently hope that the weather will be decent!

Independence Day 2008

“Let the American youth never forget, that they possess a noble inheritance, bought by the toils, and sufferings, and blood of their ancestors.”

-Joseph Story

People in general seem to be very forgetful, so the repeating of the above quote and others like it should not be seen as a dull repetition, but as a necessary reminder.

"Liberty must at all hazards be supported. We have a right to it, derived from our Maker. But if we had not, our fathers have earned and bought it for us, at the expense of their ease, their estates, their pleasure, and their blood."
-John Adams

We spent our 4th of July in Nebraska’s Capitol, attending a celebration that included the recitation of the Declaration of Independence , a speech, and a dramatic presentation of the poem “Rodney’s Ride”. We got home late and crabby, but it was a day well spent.

Daughters of the Revolution
Celebrating Liberty in Lincoln, Nebraska

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Vacation at our Iowa Resort

We are having a great time, relaxing and being lazy, doing fun things! We've eaten all the ice cream and the whipped cream, and we are working on the chocolate sauce. We've watched plenty of movies and jumped on the trampoline. We did get some sewing done, and yesterday we went into Omaha to volunteer at our Church library. We labeled about 50 books with the Dewey decimal system, and there are about 250 books left, or more. We learned the Dewey decimal system real well, though.

Our hosts' chickens are surviving under our care, though we were too scared to force the sitting hens off their nests to get at the eggs, so now there is a little chicky added to the brood, with maybe more to come. Won't our hosts be surprised when they get back!
Today, our last day of freedom, we are planning to go(if tornados don't stop us) see "Prince Caspian" and do some grocery shopping. Tomorrow and Saturday we will be at conferences all day and we will have to clean house Saturday morning before we leave. Then it's back to real life and responsibility on Sunday. Not that we didn't have responsibility here, just way less than at home. I think living alone long-term could make a person very self-centered, because there's no one to take care of but yourself!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Big Event

Jennifer's high school graduation is on Saturday. Why do we put ourselves through so much stress and work to proclaim that we are officially done with school? When usually in the case of home schoolers there's so much to read yet that you end up doing continuing school for some time after you graduate? It doesn't seem like my graduation was this stressful! Maybe I'm just tired and I have a faulty memory.
The day after Jen's graduation she and I are escaping for a little vacation. We are really just house-sitting- but we will be alone and we are planning on relaxing and getting some projects done. I am hoping I can convince Jen to share a half-gallon of vanilla ice cream and a batch of chocolate sauce with me. She is so reluctant to eat any type of sugar, but I think sugar is essential to any vacation.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

My four hours at the primary

So yes, I was at the County Courthouse for four hours yesterday helping at the voting booths. My job was to hand people their correct ballot in its (ugly brown) plastic sleeve, and take it from them when they were done and then carefully slide the ballot out of the sleeve into the ballot box without looking. There was a lot of emphasis on the “WITHOUT LOOKING” part! We were NOT supposed to see what boxes were checked on any ballot. So it wasn't a big job or hard work at all, but I did learn a little bit about the voting process. There are a lot of rules! It was required that six people be there to help- there were four nice Grandma ladies and the precinct supervisor, who was a county employee. She mostly handed out the “I Voted!” stickers. We were in charge of eight precincts. I think we had somewhere around 700 ballots provided, and only 276 ballots were used. There was only one green vote all day, which is no surprise since we live in an agricultural county where the farmers think nothing of polluting the universe through hog barn waste and crop chemicals. There were no Nebraska party votes, and maybe a few less Non-partisan votes than Democratic votes. The majority of votes were Republican. Nebraska is a pretty Republican State.

I think people should be able to choose what ballot they want, whatever party they may officially belong to, and the smaller parties should be added to to the Dem. and Rep. Ballots, instead of being separate. There was hardly anyone to vote for on the smaller ballots because fewer people were running under those parties.

None of the ladies working with me knew why NE had a Democratic caucus besides being able to vote yesterday. It doesn't make sense to me why would they caucus and vote both?

After the polls closed at 8pm, we counted all the leftover ballots and only we were only one off. I left before the ladies figured out what happened to that one.

Four hours got to be a little long when there weren't many people coming in to vote, but I am glad I went. For one thing, it's good to get your name out as someone involved in politics. That way people know to contact you when they need help and then you can influence the political scene for the better, in little ways at least.

And on the way home, I stopped to see the sunset.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Voting day

Tomorrow is voting day in Nebraska, finally, and I will be working at the polls for about four hours. This is my first time doing this, so I'm not sure if I'll have much to do or not. Everyone else working in our whole precinct at the various voting places are elderly women, except for a few high schoolers who don't have a choice about helping or not, but they're glad to get out of class for a while. It should be a good learning experience.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Borg Obama

From Gary Bauer's report last night:

"Obama went for months with a bizarre explanation of why he wouldn’t wear a flag lapel pin. There is the bizarre photo of Senators Obama and Clinton, along with Gov. Bill Richardson during the playing of the National Anthem. Richardson and Clinton have their hands over their hearts, while Obama is standing there looking ambivalent. There is Obama’s now infamous statement in San Francisco dismissing the values of most Americans who, in the candidate’s own words, “cling” to faith and guns out of bitterness. And there is this comment Obama made to the Chicago Reader in 1995, as his political career was taking off:

    “In America, we have this strong bias toward individual action. You know, we idolize the John Wayne hero who comes in to correct things with both guns blazing. But individual actions, individual dreams, are not sufficient. We must unite in collective action, build collective institutions and organizations.”"

As a Star Trek fan, that last sentence really stands out to me. I don't know about you, but I don't want to be assimilated into a collective.

"I am Obama! Resistance is futile!"

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

A country necessity- the mudroom

Today the temperature was 75 F, and so I cleaned out our mudroom. Everyone who lives in the country ought to know what a mudroom is. It's the place where you supposedly keep everyone's muddy boots, instead of putting them on the newly mopped kitchen floor. That's where you keep all the odds and ends of gardening, empty boxes, extra garbage and bottles and cans to be recycled. But mostly, it's full to the brim of coats, hat scarves, mittens, and jackets. And today I packed them all away. I may regret it, because it's supposed to freeze again this weekend. We'll just have to go without! Because I packed them all away and they are NOT coming back down. In our case, the mudroom also holds the wood bin so we don't have to keep running outside all winter long to get wood to keep us warm. That would be worse than having to use an outhouse instead of having indoor plumbing! Besides all that, we have a small oven in our mudroom so we don't heat up the house during the summer, since we don't have AC either.

Someone is coming to look at our business tonight. It would be wonderful if our business would sell before our house... Last Sunday we went to look at houses in a really nice neighborhood on the outskirts of Omaha. If we have to live in town, I would want to live in a neighborhood like that one. There was more space than usual. We are still hoping to build our own house in the end, though.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Good or Bad?

Late last night we heard that two close friends of ours were in a bad car accident when two young people didn't stop at a stop sign at a blind intersection on a country road. The mother is is critical condition with head injuries(She's at UNMC in Omaha), and the daughter is reportedly not physically hurt. We are keeping aware of the situation and Mom and Dad will visit them soon, depending on how serious Mrs. P's condition is as the day goes on. I know this sounds like a sad and terrible happening, but what does Romans 8:28 say? We know that God causes all things to work together for good, to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. And I hope and pray that He might use this "accident" to bless this family with spiritual growth, especially Mrs. P, and use them to be witnesses to others.

I have always been a careful driver, even though I don't always stop at country intersections during the winter and spring when the corn isn't blocking the view. Now I will be even more careful. There have been so many young people killed driving on country roads in our community, just from driving too fast on gravel roads or going through stop signs.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Tomorrow will be better...

Finally school is over for the day and the boys are playing outside! They did get on my nerves today. Boys are naturally fidgety and noisy, and they had more trouble than usual concentrating on schoolwork today. While they cleaned up after lunch I cut up an old dress that had stretched out elastic and re-made it into a skirt. Now I am looking up recipes on google for lentil casserole so I can go make dinner.

This morning I read a book called "Tomorrow Will Be Better" by Zdena Kapral. It is a very moving and well written story about the German occupation of Czechoslovakia. Reading books like this one is how you can really learn about history!

Monday, March 31, 2008

Yesterday was an interesting day-unfortunately, not a day of rest.

We had lunch with some old friends who are going through a hard time with family situations. They are really gracious people and very hospitable, and we agree on many issues, for example politics and the war. After lunch I shared a little about my trip to NC and I mentioned that I am looking for something to do now, and our hostess told me I ought to leave home, to be on my own and to do “my thing”. At least I am past people telling me I need to go to college! Now I just need to get out of the house away from my family and do my own thing! If only people understood: I do want to pursue my interests, but I love being with my family and I don't want to live away from them for long periods of time. Being away from my God-given support system is not healthy.

After that we went to look at two houses that had their good points, but it's not likely that we would seriously consider buying them. Next we went to look at the only straw bale house in Omaha. The owners are catholic and have eight children- a really neat family. The house itself is obviously unique. While we were there another couple came to see the house as well, and the husband turned out to be from Scotland. What an interesting day! We visit a straw bale house and meet someone from Scotland.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Is YOUR house ready to show?

It most certainly is not. With so many people living in one home, the three levels of our house cannot possibly all be clean at the same time. It is not humanly possible. We are trying to pack what we can now, and that makes the house even messier, with stuff lying around in stages of indecision and half-packed boxes. One room we have been trying to pack is the guest room. We have accumulated in the guest room closet enough costumes from other countries to set us all up for a costume party. What else do you do with clothes from other countries? We are going to have so many books to pack, ohhhhhhh. There is a bookshelf in pretty much every room in our house. We have an estimated 1000 books in high school history alone, so maybe we have about 5000 books total, but that's just a guess. Anyway, it's a lot, and I don't want to get rid of any of them. And guess what- our favorite book sale is in two weeks!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Cute boys are fun to kiss long as they are your younger brothers.

Well, we thought we had a possible buyer for our house and business, but after Mom and Dad got together with them on Friday we saw that it wasn't possible because they didn't have any money to PAY for the house and business. So we are back to square one, advertising our business. I am less and less not looking forward to living somewhere else, namely the city.

Yesterday I had all four boys with me at the business and home school co-op all day while Mom, Dad and Jen were away. Whew! I am teaching an art class at the co-op this month, so that makes it busier too. Today I went with Dad and Caleb to the St. Benedict Monastery to help out at a Christian men's conference. There wasn't much work for me to do, but it was good to be with the other Christian ladies helping out there, and the food was great! The monastery itself is beautiful.
So we are all worn out from being away, emotionally drained after thinking about selling, moving and deep Christian things.

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

1141 update

It now appears that LB 1141, the bill threatening to outlaw homeschooling in Nebraska, will sit in committee for the rest of the legislative session and will not be voted on. The Education Committee has taken no action on the bill so far. I was in Ohio the week of the hearing of 1141, but there was an estimated 1,300 home schoolers at the capital that day. My family was among them, and they reported every room was packed and everyone was well behaved.
Since we now have more of a feel of what our legislative body is like, we will be sure to keep an eye on the capital much more than we have in the past, because our politicians are decidedly not friendly towards the freedoms that NE homeschoolers currently have.

I am sorry to report that Dr. Patrick Johnston, the fellow we worked for in Ohio, lost in the primary last Tuesday. Ohio will be worse off for it in in the next few years, but Dr. Johnston is committed to politics for the long haul and I know he plans to run again in the future. You can be sure we will be back out there in Ohio, working to get him into office!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

A pet that could EAT YOU!

Did I mention that the Johnstons have a pet Python? Along with several smaller snakes, a baby alligator, and a dog? So I got to hold a python for the first time ever. And I'm not sure I want to ever hold one again! Here is a picture of other team members holding the 15 foot long python.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Back from Ohio after a week of campaign work

Caleb and I arrived back in NE late Saturday night and rejoined our family at Church the next day. After getting an average of five hours of sleep all week, it was so nice to sleep in my own bed last night! We had a great trip. It took us about 13/14 hours to get to Zanesville, Ohio, where Dr. Johnston and his family live. Dr. Johnston is running for State Representative, and you can check him out at There were nine people on our team, and we worked for the Johnston campaign Tues., Wed., Thurs. and Friday. Usually we did door-to-door literature drops in the morning, waved "Vote for Johnston" and "Honk for Johnston!" signs at a busy intersection during lunch hour, went back to doing door-to-door for the afternoon, and waved signs again during evening rush hour. My legs were pretty sore after doing all that running. The weather was miserable, too, but the good company and good cause made standing out in the wet, snowy cold worthwhile! It either rained or snowed almost every day we were in Ohio.
The Ohio primaries are tomorrow, and I am eagerly awaiting the election results. There weren't any polls done, so we have no idea what chance Dr. Johnston has of winning. Whatever happens, I am glad I could work for such a godly man, committed to being a public servant and using Biblical principles in our government.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Things are starting to pick up again. I have had a very nice break in the past two months, staying at home and doing domestic things except for a few short trips to Lincoln, and a little tutoring. Jen took over my days at the business while I was in NC, so I often go a whole week without having to go out in the cold more than a few times. Very nice. But I have been feeling lazy. I do want to live at home and help my family, and that does for the most part keep me busy, but I have been wanting a few projects to fill up my extra time.
I haven't found one consistent thing to work on over the spring, but more little jobs are popping up on the calendar. This next week I am planning on going to Ohio on a political campaign. I have been invited to help at a men's conference; the home school conference, women's conference, and Jen's graduation are also coming up. Mom says we need to start packing. I know there is more on the calendar, but I can't remember what it is right now. Anyway, I will most likely be in Ohio next week, so you won't hear from me. But that's nothing new, right? I've been terrible about posting.

Oh, another thing on the calendar is weddings! I think I might go to more weddings this summer than I have been to in all of the other years of my life combined. And I was unofficially asked to help with one of them... we'll see about the others. It's hard to believe so many people my age will soon be getting married.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Good turnout at Nebraska Capital

Yesterday, despite the dangerous driving conditions(it snowed. Again.), our whole family drove to Lincoln to take part in the home school Legislative Day, a annual event to help home schoolers learn about our legislature and meet with their senators- something like a field trip. However, due to the recent introduction by senator Shimek of the anti-freedom bill 1141, the focus of the day was primarily to talk to our senators about the bill and to make a show of force, letting our senators know that we are respectfully, but very strongly, opposed to this bill.
The roads were slick and icey in the morning, so instead of the estimated 1000 homeschoolers expected to attend, there were about 600. We arrived around 11am to hear Sen. Hudkins, Sen. Fulton, and Sen. Erdman speak to the group about LB 1141 and other bills of interest. Sometime near 12:30 we were divided into groups according to district so we could go meet our senators and speak to them for hopefully a few minutes. Our Senator, Kent Rogert, is fairly young and new to the scene. Our idea of him is that he is liberal, backed by rich farmers, and not too likely to support the home school cause. After lunch we listened to speakers from Family First, Nebraska Christian Home Educators Association(NCHEA), and Nebraska Family Council. The event ended at 3pm and we rushed home so we could get back before dark and get Dad's car unstuck from a snowdrift. The Lincoln Star Journal and Lincoln channel 10 News(KLON/KGIN) have both given media coverage to LB 1141, though it is generally biased in favor of the bill.

It was a good day, and we are all looking forward to the hearing on the 26th. I would not be surprised if there were 1000 people at that event!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Dewaine Gahan

With students from UNO last May.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

In Honor of Dewaine Gahan

A good friend and a great man, Dewaine Gahan, died Thursday after a long battle with cancer. Mr. Gahan was a strong Christian man, who I believe was a great witness to many people through his God-honoring attitude during his sickness. He did so much good work in the community; promoting the town and working to help it grow and stay strong. He loved sports; and as editor of our local newspaper he always had pages of sports editorials every week. Dad worked with Mr. Gahan often to organize short trips for UNO's international students, and Mr. Gahan was always very hearty, positive, and friendly. He will be very much missed, but we are glad he is not suffering any longer.

Food and friends

Last night we had some old friends over for good food and good conversation, except for the part where the adults started talking about septic systems and bathroom leaks. That's what happens when you have a plumber over for dinner.
Just before dinner, Caleb was being silly and he knocked the battery-operated timer into the main dish, boiling on the stove. Mom got an emotional phone call; Jeremy got up from his nap with an earache. Dad wasn't home yet and all the boys needed baths. But in the end, things calmed down and no one has gotten sick from the charged goulash yet.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Capital City

I am in Lincoln for the first time since early December. Mrs. Carr's house is sooooo dry, I feel as though I've been dried to a crisp. My eyes are dry, my skin, my lips, everything. I am doing computer work and dictation for Mrs. Carr so far, though she says she wants me to clean out her china closet. And I've been listening. Mrs. Carr enjoys talking, and she is very sure of her opinions. Guess who she is voting for? Ron Paul. I don't say much on that point, because if we were both so forceful, I wouldn't long be employed, and we sure wouldn't get along very well! She feeds me very well, though, so I really am not suffering. Last night we went to Panara Breads, and I had cheecy broccoli soup with a really good chicken sandwich- YUM! Coming from a family of nine, going out to eat means we go to MacDonald's and each get a dollar sandwich, so I am getting spoiled here.
Well, I will be going home tomorrow evening. Pray it won't snow!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Make the bed, shake the bed, and to bed we go

We are having guests tomorrow- a family from our Church with five children. They are staying until Sunday morning, so we had to clean the upstairs as well as the main floor. It's good that they are staying overnight, because we only clean the upstairs when we have guests, pretty much. If there's one thing I dislike about having overnight guests, though, it's making up all the beds and then washing all the sheets.

If we are feeling well, we "older" family members will be going to a lecture in Omaha on Jamestown, and some of the myths that surround the early American settlers. We've heard the speaker before and liked him, so if I take good enough notes I may have something substantial to share with you. I haven't posted anything educational in so long, I will make that my goal for the weekend- post a good post.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Sugar and Vegetables

I made a three layer chocolate cake today, wtih chocolate pudding as the filling and frosting. Oh, I love to bake sweets. Tomorrow being Sunday, we might have brownies- the half-baked kind.
But on Monday, oh ho, doom comes on Monday. We are going on a sugar free diet. Vegetables and fruits only. No meat, even. I know it will be hard. But it's not even for a long time- fruits and vegetables are too expensive, especially during the winter time, for us to be herbivores for long. Americans love to eat all the time, and it's a habit that is hard to break, in this land of plenty. I do try to shop and bake frugally- my general rule for baked goods is the recipe can't have more than one stick of butter or three eggs. I have trouble thinking generously when having to take dishes to parties or get-togethers. I tend to think in a stingy way; but my pride balances this out because I want people to enjoy my food. Yes, I'm a sinner.

We are watching the political debates on TV right now; the Republican Presidential candidatesare speaking. I have already decided who I am going to vote for in the primaries(unless my parents counsel me to vote for a different person), and being tired of and disgusted with the non-stop media coverage of the primaries, I am not paying too much attention. So don't bother to ask me detailed questions about the debate.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

I WILL post today

I have been trying to post for the past few days, but by the time I get my blogger-create-post page up, I have to run and go do something else and am not able to get more computer time.

Welcome to 2008, everyone.
Our New Year's Eve traditions are to eat summer sausage, cheese and crackers, and to drink punch(non-alcoholic, of course) while talking about our goals for the coming year. And we are always in bed long before midnight! I think we only use our punch bowl once a year, on New Year's Eve. We also go over last year's goals to see what we have accomplished. The main goal for 2008 is to pack up our house and move; that's a big job when you've been living in the same house for 15 years. We haven't listed our house yet, but we are starting to clean and pack nonetheless, because if we don't start now we won't be ready when the time comes. So far, we have cleaned out the pantry and the library. We easily have two thousand books or more, even after we got rid of several hundred.

Have I mentioned before that we are planning on moving this year? If not, surprise!