Monday, June 30, 2008

I think this is interesting . . .

"Optical illusion helps create fake speed bumps." That is the title of the article on CNN.com. If you want to read more click HERE.

Oh, did you happen to notice how I made my blog 'template' match the colors in my post? (I was tired of the same old same old.) 'Course when I change it to match tomorrow's picture (whatever that may be) it won't match this one. LIfe is full of dilemmas.

I think I better go.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

I have a beautiful daughter . . .

. . . who put up a vlog on her blog today. Click HERE to see it. (Oh, and she IS clothed, by the way!) (Oh, now for sure you'll click and watch it!)

Saturday, June 28, 2008

I have a handsome son . . .

. . . and he has a newfangled thing on his blog (which used to be on another website - but is back now to the original (I know what I'm saying). It's called a VLOG. You can get to it by clicking HERE.

Of course, he'll be embarrassed by the title of this post. So be it.

As for me, I'm in Oklahoma City. I came up for my sweet sister-in-law's baby shower and now I'm staying in a swanky hotel in downtown OKC (that my Sam arranged for me). LIfe is sweet. mm.

[Sam, if you read this, please feed Shiloh.]

Friday, June 27, 2008

New great nephew!

Here is little Lewis with his parents, Jennifer and Ryan Tompkins. This picture is taken in Viet Nam where they are now - doing all the paper work, etc., to finalize the adoption.
Doesn't Lewis look happy?


Here he is with one of his precious orphanage workers.


Everybody, pray for the long trip home- that it be safe and smooth and happy - for a little fella who has never spent his life anywhere but in 2 rooms!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

3 pictures . . .

Here's my mother with her Texas-sized flower. If you know the name of the flower/plant, let me know, please.
This is my Indonesian purse Sam brought me from Indonesia last fall. (I love it.) He paid 7 dollars for it. 'Course that's not including the trip there and back. Ha.
I think my coffee pot looks like a Chinese man with his lower lip stuck out. Do you agree?

4 Things . . .

1. Bob Dylan's real name is Robert Zimmerman.
2. Russians generally answer the phone by saying, 'I'm listening.'
3. The citrus soda 7-UP was created in 1929; '7' was selected because the original containers were 7 ounces. 'UP' indicated the direction of the bubbles.
4. Wasps are territorial. Ken and Pat told us this and gave us a fake wasp nest. Now we're eating breakfast outside in safety! (Really. A certain wasp used to come around. Now he doesn't.)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

2 more shower pictures . . .

These mints were bought at Hobby Lobby - in the bridal decor section. . . and they were yum. (Laura took this picture. I love it!)

4 Beauties: from left: Linh, Caroline, Julia, Gretchen.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Caroline's shower was SO FUN!

Here are some pictures!















[Unfortunately I didn't get a picture of Caroline opening up her gifts- in front of all the guests - which numbered about 40!]

Friday, June 20, 2008

Still celebrating . . .


This week - on all my blogs - I've been celebrating Sam's and my 30th wedding anniversary. On my 'What? Are You Kidding Me?' blog I've put up cartoons or one-liners. Frankly it's hard to find funny material that is uplifting about the idea of marriage! I'll give you 3 examples of what I mean:
"Marriage is not a word. It is a sentence--a life sentence."
"Marriage certificate is just another word for a work permit."
"A happy marriage is a matter of giving and taking; the husband gives and the wife takes."

Hello!!?? - I so disagree with those so-called 'funnies'.

Yes, marriage can be a challenge - I mean 2 people from different families moving in together for life. That DOES sound daunting. But it can be wonderful. And, for sure, you have to work at it . . . but, well, .....I won't preach a sermon here.

On my 'Grace Notes' blog I have put up some marriage quotes I like. Here's one that I particularly like.
"For a marriage relationship to flourish, there must be intimacy. It takes an enormous amount of courage to say to your spouse, 'This is me. I'm not proud of it -- in fact, I'm a little embarrassed by it -- but this is who I am.'"
—Bill Hybels

So marriage has been on my mind. . . but not just because of Sam and me. Tomorrow I'm hostessing (I think that's a word) Caroline's bridal shower here. There are seven of us actually as official hostesses, and four 'helpers'.
AND YOU WILL BE HAPPY TO KNOW THAT MANY (MOST OF, IN FACT) Of THE INVITED GUESTS HAVE ACTUALLY R.S.V.P.'ED. YAY!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
It should be FUN FUN FUN. Especially since I know we'll have enough food food food. !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Have a great weekend.
I will.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Zero Church

This fall Sam is starting Zero Church. Actually that is the KIND of church he's starting. The first 'edition' of it will be called Apologia - and will meet at Bear Valley church on Saturday nights. (It will be a branch of Bear Valley.) Basically it's church designed for those curious but not convinced about Christianity. . . and it is with a definite post-modern, intellectual bent. For more info on Zero Church click HERE for the website.

Sam has always had a passion to reach the unchurched. When he was in Southwestern Seminary in southwest Fort Worth decades ago he would go to TCU with a list of students' names who had picked 'no religious preference' and would knock on their doors and talk to them about Christ. This was when lots of his seminary friends were complaining that they didn't have a staff position at a church. Sam didn't either, but that didn't mean he wasn't doing God's work. (Me - I'd be too afraid. But then, I have different gifts (is that an excuse?))

Then when we went to Brazil as missionaries in 1980 he was frustrated when he was put on desk duty when he wanted to be planting churches.

Anyway, Zero Church is what he's focusing on now. Well, besides the B. H. Carroll classes he teaches.

Busy man . . . and wonderful.

(I'm focusing on him this week (and marriage in my other blogs) - because we're celebrating 30 years of marriage. --- I'm shamelessly congratulating ourselves.)

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

"The New Paradigm Church and Its Ethos"

The title of this post is the name of the Ph.D. seminar Sam is going to lead starting in August - with B. H. Carroll Theological Institute. HERE is their website.

All this week I'm celebrating Sam. it's hard to do that without impressing you, huh?

Sam is one of the few resident fellows at Carroll Institute who is not full-time who has been asked to teach (lead) a doctoral seminar. I am so proud.

Sam also teaches New Testament 1, 2, and 3 and New Testament Greek there (though not all at once) - and sometimes online.

Anyway. I'm proud.

Here he is at the breakfast table. (He let me take this picture.)
That's my man.

[My next post (maybe tomorrow) will be about Zero Church - which he is starting in the fall.]

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

30 YEARS!



30 years ago today Sam and I got married! (I thought we would feel like old people when it was 2008. Funny how 'old' changes through the years.)

Today we're spending the day together. . . breakfast out. Lunch out. Dinner out. That's my kind of day!! Oh, and we'll go by our old haunts as newlyweds - down near Southwestern Seminary in southwest Fort Worth. And the big celebration is tonight - we plan on calling some of our old friends from 1978-ish.- Sam's idea. (He is more sentimental than anyone would guess.)

Oh, and the rest of this week on all three of my blogs I'll be celebrating marriage. (You get to those blogs by going to 'Check out my other blogs' (up on the left) and clicking. --- I know. Shameless plug(s).) I had just about decided to retire the 'What? Are You Kidding Me?" blog for lack of interest, but Bailey and Elizabeth have renewed my 'vision'! As for the "GraceNotes" blog - well, no one comments, but quotes are easier to find than jokes so I'll keep it going. . . though it may be dying someday for lack of a comment. (Hint.) (Though, I DO know that you out there have lives and can't just sit around all the time with my blogs like I do. . . . . . --but in a perfect world. . . . . )

Anyway, have a great day. Sam and I will!! (Right now he's sleeping but soon we'll start the day of reminiscing . . . and eating. . . and enjoying each other. mm.)

I am so blessed.
Thank you, Lord.

Monday, June 16, 2008

My Two Mostest Favoritist Men. . .

. . . with one looking up to the other . . . and then to me, their adoring fan.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Fantastic Sam . . .


. . . is my man.
I want to wish him a FANTASTIC FATHER'S DAY . . . because he is a FANTASTIC FATHER!! ....and a FANTASTIC HUSBAND, by the way.
. . . Which brings me to this point: I want to celebrate him all this coming week (starting today) because not only is it Father's Day tomorrow . . . but on Tuesday we celebrate 30 years of marriage. !!!!!!!!

Life is so good.

Friday, June 13, 2008

3 Things FINALLY


1. The Tompkins are FINALLY going to get Lewis!! (The Tompkins are our niece, Jennifer, and her family (from Sam's side)) They FINALLY got the go-ahead to go to Vietnam and get their little boy. He'll be one in July so that tells you how long the adoption process has taken! (Happy Father's Day, Ryan!)
(Yes, this IS a picture of my new great nephew!)

2. FINALLY Saudi women are allowed to drive. Actually this is not brand new news. I think it happened in March. (I think American women have been allowed to drive for a while!!!!!!!!) Article (well, blog post or something) is HERE.

3. I FINALLY ate at Jimmy's Egg in Oklahoma City. All the Carmacks (well, most) know this place. Now I do. Delicious, HUGE pancake. Light and fluffy.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Just silly.

I'm up early - ready for the day - and very hungry. I have an appointment for blood work at 7:50 (routine check-up) so I've been fasting since midnight last night. Seems like a good time to blog (can't eat).

Yesterday afternoon I did the post about last meals -- maybe you haven't read it. You don't have to read it (of course) - but DO read the comment by Beth under it. It will make you smile.

I have a new top on from Christopher and Banks. I love that store - and was thrilled to find out that there is one in Southlake at the Town Center. That really surprised me because Christopher and Banks - though the name sounds uppity - is NOT. This top I have on was $12. I think it looks so good I'm wearing it to board meeting today - and that's in a bank - where you might find more uppity clothes on board members.

I'm getting silly.

I'll probably hit 'publish post' and then later delete it.
But maybe not.

I'm getting silly.

But . . . I can be silly ----- this is MY blog.

I guess when my stomach is empty my mind is too.
Hmm.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Last meal . . .

I feel sorry for people on death row. That sounds flip but it is not. I DO feel sorry for them, though I do believe in capital punishment (generally).
And I think it's great that they are given whatever they want for a last meal. Today, in the Star Telegram there is an article about a man who has ordered the biggest meal ever ordered as a last meal on death row. Click HERE to read about it, if you wish.

It made me think about meals, of course. . . . and what would I like as my last one. Mexican food, of course, would have to be considered. Lately, though, I've found myself enjoying Italian food. And not fancy Italian food. Yesterday I had a meatball sandwich at Firehouse Subs with Bailey. It was DELICIOUS. And has become a contender for 'last meal' status.


What would you want as your last meal? (Leave a comment about it, if you'd like. I LOVE COMMENTS.)

Oh, and speaking of death row. . . we're all on it. That could sound flip, but it is not, of course. (Have I told you lately that I love God---- I could preach.. . but won't here.)

Anyway, let me know of your contenders for last meal.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

This makes me swoon. . .



And just so you know- I was three years old when this came out. (I discovered it years later, of course.)

Monday, June 9, 2008

Join me.

There's a movement out there that I'm joining. Click
HERE to read about it. You might want to join it, too.
And speaking of that movement . . . this quote fits well with what I did today - and with that movement:
"The soul is healed by being with children." -Fyodor Dostoevsky
Now I really didn't need my soul healed this morning (thankfully)- but I got it healed, anyway!. I was with little Caroline while her mommy and daddy were at Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas where John had surgery on his knee. The surgery went very well. And me, I got to have a wonderful time with sweet Caroline. She is such a dear. . . and wise beyond her months (she'll be 18 months June 28th). It was so great just being with her. Life seemed to slow down . . . and be very gentle.
Thank you, Lord.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

2 more pics of Laura . . . and then a gift shop picture . . .

Here is Laura in the main kitchen where she cooked last Friday's meal for about 20-30 people. (I hadn't cooked for that many people until I was in my forties!) Oh, she DID get some help from Molly - who's pictured below.

Here's Laura and Molly at the gift shop register where Ken is paying for some Fair Trade coffee and some Fair Trade dark chocolate.

That gift shop is really nice. You could call it a small version of World Market.
Here's a picture of it.


If you're down Waco way - go see Laura (but you might call first). Click HERE for the website to the World Hunger Relief Farm. It has easy directions.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Here are three of my most 'favoritist' people in the whole wide world:

Here are (from left) Pat (my sister-in-law (Sam's sister), Sam (the love of my life), and Ken (my brother-in-law). Sam was showing them his online class discussion site - which is very interesting.

Here's Pat with her Egyptian Walking Onions - from her garden!


Some people have thought that Pat and I are sisters --- which is a major compliment to me.

[I LOVE being a Carmack.]

(see previous post for GREAT pictures of Laura at the World Hunger Relief Farm.)

Friday, June 6, 2008

Just a few of the many . . .

. . . pictures I took of Laura at the World Hunger Relief Farm near Elm Mott, Texas (north of Waco).

Here is Laura's tour group -- from left, Aunt Pat, Daddy-Sam, Laura, Mama-Nancy, Uncle Ken.

This is the Nicaragua House - where people can come and see how it is to live without plumbing and electricity, etc.

This shows Laura's tan.

The little goat drinking milk from its mother may have been the little goat Laura saw being born. But then, I counted about 9 little goats.

Laura is showing us some frozen goat milk here.

This is where Laura does some of her gardening. She's got a tiny carrot in her hand here.

Here is Laura where she sleeps. The room is unairconditioned - but Laura is okay with that!

Here's the toilet where everyone's 'business' is done. Normally I would not take a picture of a toilet. But this toilet is made so that it is completely environmentally correct -- therefore high up (Laura will have to explain).

Here's the 'dorm' where Laura lives.


So those are a few of the pictures.

We had a great time. After the tour we all went to Ken and Pat's house and had a yummy supper. I will put up 2 more pictures of them tomorrow.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Sweet girl . . .

I babysat little Caroline today. I'll prove it with these pictures . . .