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party on Wayne...

Party on, Garth.

Happy Halloween, everyone!


a very sad day

Maggie passed away last night. She was 3 years old. 3 years old... I didn't find out about Maggie's passing until Darlene emailed me (thank you, Darlene) this afternoon. I was out and about this morning - working on filing my fictitious business name, applying for my business license and opening a business checking account (I'm a real business owner today - kinda strange). So I just sat down to work and I read the email. Everything just came to a screeching halt for me. My left over tuna casserole was still in the microwave and I just fell to my knees in deep prayer and actual sobs. The crying surprised me, too. I think one of my spiritual gifts is empathy, because sometimes I can feel other people's emotional pain.

I was praying for Maggie and her family, before I knew anything about the news, this morning and I just kept telling God: "I just don't understand why." Look at her. She is a precious little angel. I know God has his plans and everything is in His perfect timing, but that doesn't mean it's easy to understand why it all happens. I can't even imagine what her parents (Rick and Beth) are going through right now. I guess we can all be at peace knowing that Maggie's holding Jesus' hand right now. And while I know the Williams' hearts are at peace with where Maggie is - it doesn't make them miss their sweet little girl any less.

Cling to the moment, everyone. If there is ever a lesson in terminal illnesses - it's live every moment in sheer joy. Treasure those around you and bask in the love of your family and friends. All we have to take with us are our relationships.

If you have a moment, please say a prayer for Maggie's family. Let them know you're praying - sign their guest book on Maggie's site.


these people are really into their Macs

These people are really into Apple. I love the iJac. Click on the title of this posting to see more. I might carve a pumpkin, but Justin is anti-Mac symbols on our pumpkins. I don't want to do it because I'm an Appleophile, it's because it's different. I'm excited about carving our pumpkins, even if it's a plain old face. What kind of things do you carve into your pumpkins?


Prayers for Maggie

As you know, I have been praying for Rebekah for a long time. A few months ago, through Rebekah's page, I was introduced to a little girl named Maggie. She is suffering with leukemia. Maggie and her family need your prayers - so very much. Click on her photo to read about her diagnosis, but mostly, please pray for Maggie. As Christians, we believe in miracles and I'm not going to stop praying for one.


Mistress Tootie Bell did it, so I did, too!

You Are A: Puppy!

puppy dogBeloved by all, puppies are energetic, playful, and loving. Your playful and friendly nature is part of what makes you a puppy. Known for their loyalty, puppies make great pets for young and old alike. And an innocent puppy face can melt anyone's heart!

You were almost a: Lamb or a Bunny
You are least like a: Frog or a SquirrelWhat Cute Animal Are You?



I know it has been a long time, but really, threats?

In the past week, I have aged about 20 days. Why does illness just suck the life (and time) right out of you? I don't even know what happened to last week. I do know that in the midst of starting my business avec shiny new iMac, a better, shinier one came out - not days from the arrival of the new one. Woe to those of you who have purchased the iMac before September 30 - you're just plain out of luck. In technology, that's the way the cookie crumbles. You're probably thinking that's not a big deal - so what, it's newer and has a few more things. Well, if you are thinking that - you are quite wrong, my friend. Quite wrong. The new one has a faster processor, better RAM, more RAM, a built-in web camera, a remote for media access anywhere around the room and it comes standard with mighty mouse. So, it was worth all the hassle to return the thing. I won't go into Apple's strange policies and even stranger policies for business members. I will say that it took a few phone calls, some pleading, some demanding, some more pleading, some more demanding and then finally a 3-5 day period of time for Apple to think about allowing the return. So, as soon as my eggs are done boiling and are safety in my belly, I will be heading off to FedEx to send in old Mac and patiently await the return, credit, re-purchase and arrival of the new Mac. What a process!

In other news: I hate the grocery store. If it's not empty, I hate it. It's like running a gauntlet of near-misses. And people don't seem to care how rude or impatient they are at the store. Yesterday I had to pick-up brownie mix, because I was making them for our Bible study group, and I was amazed at how hard it is to not be annoyed and not to get injured. In the parking lot, I almost hit a woman randomly running across the parking lot with her cart and then while I was walking into the store, I almost got hit by some man going like 40 MPH in his giant SUV. Then, in the store, my toes had a near-miss with a runaway cart - which some kid was supposed to be supervising, but was distracted by the Halloween decorations and abandoned his cart. A man leaving the baked goods isle did not step to the side to avoid missing me, in turn, causing me to jump behind an end-cap of Captain Crunch. Some crazy girl on her cell phone stepped side-to-side in front of the brownies, making me do the same in a potty-dance sort of way - just to get around her. So, after finally getting my brownie mix, the same cell-phone girl wandered in front of me at the 15-items or less. I gave her the benefit of the doubt, because she was on the phone and not paying attention to anyone. Cell-phone girl then did the strangest thing - she left her hand-held basket on the belt to go in search of something she missed. I think she thought the line would wait for her until she returned. That's audacity, man. I always assumed that if you forgot something, you leave the line and then come back - not just leave your basket like a bookmark. Anyway, so needless to say, the line kept moving. I told the clerk that I thought the girl was coming back, but she insisted on keeping the line moving - which made sense. So, I was almost done with my purchase and then the girl came back - still on the phone and looking totally annoyed that the line had moved. She, and I kid you not, climbed into and over the cart that was in her way to get back to her place - of course, not saying "excuse me" or anything. I don't think she stepped on any food in the cart, but the bulging eyes of the woman who belonged to the cart indicated that she certainly did not have her permission to climb into it.

Clutching my brownie mix and receipt, I made my way for the exit - completely distracted by the incident. I was thrilled that I had made it out, without a battle wound. Elated too soon, my balloon deflated as some crazy old lady ran right over my foot with her cart on her way to the parking lot. Thank God I wasn't wearing flip flops. I'm going to pretend that she apologized, but I'm pretty sure she was happy about her wayward cart of destruction. She must hate the grocery store more than I do.


somebody, please, put me out of my misery

That Kathy Bates movie has nothing on the condition of my throat. I usually am the one person who can withstand the mega-germ infested world we live in. Somehow, throughout the years, I have managed to remain relatively unscathed by the evil thwartings of all things ill. However, I have failed my mission to be a healthy human until 2006.

My head feels like one of those cartoon anvils, and every time I move it, I expect Wile E. Coyote to cower under it's falling weight. I have a Chlorospetic numbness on my throat now, but between squirts, it feels more like sandpaper on fire. Then there's the coughing. The painful, gut-wrenching, horrible coughing. It's a ceaseless sort of cough that wants to see that I get no rest at all. But that's OK, because I really shouldn't be resting anyway. Because here's the real kicker: being self-employed does not give you sick time. So, you either tough it out and get it done or you don't do it at all and you don't get paid. Wonderful.

On the brighter side of things - the 'Tussin Buz is quite nice.


thanks frances

Apparently my past relationship resembles:

And I am most like:

Strange world to live in, Frances - a strange world, indeed.


there's no turning back now

Well, I have a domain and website. It's so strange to me. Things are rolling with my new business, but I really need to get more focused. Bean Creative Designs by Marla Tipton


salt of the earth

Those are the kind of people that Justin is related to. They are absolutely the salt of the earth - kind, generous, warm, hospitable and did I mention kind?

We spent 4 days in Oklahoma this past weekend. I had never been there, but I didn't expect getting there to be such a long trip. We flew out of Reno with my in-laws, so our trip started on Thursday after work. We drove 3.5 hours from Pleasanton to Reno. The next morning we flew from Reno to Denver (2H 20M) and had a layover (2H) then we flew from Denver to Oklahoma City (1H 30M). Then we drove from Oklahoma City to Wilburton (3H). I was happy to stand when we finally got there! I keep wondering if there is a faster way to get there. I honestly don't think so. Well, other than flying directly from here rather than driving to Reno, but it's still a long trip either way you dice it. Oh, and on the trip back we did that whole thing in reverse (except that we flew through Phoenix, instead of Denver - adding 250 miles to our trip) and we did it all in one day, rather than two. We had about 17 hours of traveling yesterday. Yikes!

We had a blast, though. Seriously, we had more fun that I ever expected. I went 4-wheeling on their ATVs and mucho land. We ate - a lot. We visited and just had a nice, relaxing time. I don't get to do that very often, even on vacation. I am drawn to a lifestyle that doesn't demand so much from you all the time. I get tired just looking at my week here. I needed a rest more than I knew and Justin's family took me in like one of their very own. I think I adapted well to their way of life - but not the humidity.

Strangest comment: The chiggers might not like you, because you have darker skin.

1: I didn't know what a chigger was until I got there, so that was odd to me. They are small little biting bugs that come out of the long grass. They apparently can been annoying and their bites itch badly. In fact, Tip said his friend almost lost a leg to an infected chigger bite. That seems extreme, but they are not fun to get, none-the-less.

2: I have dark skin? Ok, so Oklahoma is the whitest state I have ever been to and I am of "mixed" blood, being German and Hawaiian/Puerto Rican, but dark skin? Cool, maybe all this time my mother was right - I am black.

Anyway, not everyone was happy that we got away. Padme missed us. Here is a photo of her to keep you happy all day long.