j-flamingo reflections

Inspired by the grace and beauty of the flamingo, my life reflected by my love of reading, writing and creating.

Homemade Christmas gifts




Now that Christmas is over and people have received gifts and been surprised so I wanted to post this now.
Each year I like to create something homemade for friends that I can give to them. I didn't get as much done this year because I didn't start early enough but I did get a few things made. I'm still working on some other projects for my family and I'll post about them later.
Pictured is the Angel and Snowman earrings I made and the tote bags I made that my brother-in-law, Nathan, taught me how to make as well. I really appreciated learning about totes - Thanks so much, Nathan! I couldn't believe it when I found these fabrics because they were actually perfect for the people that I had in mind to make these totes for. I was amazed and I think the fabrics are so great, so pretty and really fun!

Piano Solo by Scott D. Davis

My daughter, Hopie, introduced me to Scott D. Davis and his music on the piano. It is so beautiful and just blew me away so I had to share it!

This is his rendition of a popular rock song by Evanescence called "My Immortal." This song is beautiful as it is and has always spoken to my heart.

Here's the beautiful piece by Scott D. Davis.

Here's the version by Evanescence with her singing the words.

I like it both ways - I love the words and getting lost in my thoughts as I listen to the music.

Yet Another Computer Issue

Yes, again my computer was down for about a month. Ever since I bought my first computer in high school with my hard-earned money, I've had one computer issue after another and have been through quite a few computers. I suppose it might be time again for a new one now. But if I can hang, maybe I can get a laptop or one of those cool touch screens. Like the virtual one on Iron Man, okay so I'm really dreaming here. I'll most likely be fixing up this cardboard box while waiting for prices to go down on the next cool computer when everyone has one already.
My brother Sam described my computer trouble best on the phone the other day, "Since it seems like your computer is always down, I thought I'd give you a call." Thanks, Sam and I did appreciate your call.
The crazy thing is that I love computers and would probably consider myself addicted. Hi, my name is jewels, jewelie, or whatever nickname you know me as and I love to e-mail and blog endlessly. I love to look all kinds of things up - "Google"! I love to watch TV shows I've missed over and over as well as cool movie trailers. I've been introduced to Facebook now and I have fun with Multiply and Sparkpages as well. I'm still considering if I really need a MySpace or LDSJournal account yet. I love the photo blogs, ideas and forums about scrapbooking or papercrafting topics. I love to pay all my bills in about 30 seconds. I love to window shop online because when it comes to online shopping I have to be careful. I could go on and on.
Funny thing is in high school, if you would have told me what computers would become and what the internet would be, I probably would have considered it science fiction. Well, here we are and I'm ready to share again through blogging. Just remember if you don't hear from me in cyberspace for about 2 weeks or more than yes, my computer's down again. Otherwise, I'm just busy with real life whatever that means now.

The Quilts of Grandma Rae

It's hard to believe that it has been about 10-11 years since I finished this quilt with my sweet Grandma Rae. She had a dream to make a quilt for each of her grandchildren. Since it is so time consuming and her grandchildren kept growing and coming so fast, I'm not sure how many she was actually able to make.
I feel lucky and happy that she invited me over at a time when I lived close enough to walk over and help her finish my quilt. She let me choose my colors, fabric and pattern. I chose the star quilt pattern because I had an orange star quilt as a young girl growing up that I just loved so much that it tattered away to pieces eventually. I missed it and its comfort so much.
I really needed this experience in my life back then. She helped me in many ways and through each step in the quilting process. Some parts are more fun than others in quilting. It was a challenge and a lot of work. What I enjoyed most was the warm relationship that I gained with my Grandma Rae and the insight I saw into my own mother's past also. I will always treasure this moment and think of my loving Grandma fondly.
One part that I will always remember was my first little girl, Hopie, was playing around us as we were working on this quilt. It's another reason why it means so much to me. I was a new and very nervous mother. I wasn't used to the unexpected things that little ones do at Hopie's young, around 12-18 months, age.
Once, little Hopie, tried to stand up using a TV tray and since it wasn't very stable at all, it collapsed on her and she hurt her head. Immediately, my Grandma helped Hopie and me, then we ended up in the ER for her to have stitches. It was so scary then but with quick action Hopie recovered nicely and she is fine, of course, at 12 yrs. old now.
Another incident, was when Hopie tried to drink some of my Grandmother's fabric dye. We hastily called Poison Control and followed their directions to help Hopie. It all worked out without another trip to the ER, but Hopie had a nice dark brown ring around her lips and a brown tongue for a few days. I remember that she would still smile so cute and with that brown circle around her mouth, if you can just picture that, well then, I couldn't help but smile back.
These are what I recall of the cherished memories I have of making a quilt with my Grandma Rae. I'm grateful to her love, gratitude, knowledge, outlook on life, quilting experience and her inspiration. She was literally a life-saver to me through all of this!

Horse Bookmark


Today, I came across a blog about stamping from Dan in U.K. He had done a tutorial about how to use distress inks that are alcohol based. I had bought a Tim Holtz ink pad that was like this and hadn't tried it yet. So, when I saw this tutorial, I was very inspired. I tried it out and I made this horse bookmark. This is only my first attempt, so I'm sure I'll get better at it as I practice. I'd also like some more of those inks and crazy stamps like the one he used but for now I'll just enjoy the ones I have.

As for my supplies I used, they are:
light brown card stock - unknown
tea dye Distress Ink - Tim Holtz
Dark Moss fluid chalk ink - ColorBox
Gold Violet Two-Tone ink - Pearl Ex
White Craft Stamp pad - Stampin' Up
Mare and colt horse stamp - Stampabilites
Bluebonnet stamp - Hero Arts
Garden Collage stamp - Stampin' Up
Watercolor pencils and blender pens - Stampin' Up
Oh, and a spritz of water

Overall, I loved this technique and I will try it again. I'd recommend watching Dan's tutorial before trying it yourself. He has some great tips. One that I was excited about was one that I have used and that is using post-it notes for masking, it works so well!
I had fun and I can't wait to try it again. I'll be sure to post the results.


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Now playing: Roxette - Listen To Your Heart
via FoxyTunes

J.S. Bach on a Sunday Morning

I love classical music on Sunday mornings and I'd like to tell you about different music I'll listen to each Sunday. I'm not worried if you care or not. I'd just like to express my feelings about it.
Bach's music helps me retreat into a more meditative state. I love his use of strong chords and how they reach into the depths of my soul. I'm not usually one to like Opera but I love the far-reaching mysterious voices that come when people are singing his music. It's very dream-like and beautiful to me.

Here's a couple of quotes that might shed some more light on meditation:

“We could say that meditation doesn't have a reason or doesn't have a purpose. In this respect it's unlike almost all other things we do except perhaps making music and dancing. When we make music we don't do it in order to reach a certain point, such as the end of the composition. If that were the purpose of music then obviously the fastest players would be the best. Also, when we are dancing we are not aiming to arrive at a particular place on the floor as in a journey. When we dance, the journey itself is the point, as when we play music the playing itself is the point. And exactly the same thing is true in meditation. Meditation is the discovery that the point of life is always arrived at in the immediate moment.”
~Chad Alan Watts

“Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless - like water. Now you put water into a cup, it becomes the cup, you put water into a bottle, it becomes the bottle, you put it in a teapot, it becomes the teapot. Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend.”
~Bruce Lee

Meditate - be music, be water.



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Now playing: Johann Sebastian Bach - Aria aus den Goldberg-Variationen (Glenn Gould)
via FoxyTunes

cards I made just to post here




I can't resist blogging and I couldn't think of what I wanted to post next so I made some cards just for the occasion. I'm amazed at how great I think these turned out. I really had my creative juices flowing for sure today.
I'm not sure what brands the cardstock is, some could be Stampin' Up, but the stamps are for sure Stampin' Up. Believe it or not, I only used one tiny piece of patterned paper ~ the rest of the paper is cardstock and inks that I created. My inks are a combination of Stampin' Up, VersaColor, ColorBox fluid chalk inks.
If you drop by, feel free to comment and let me know what your thoughts are on these cards. Perhaps, these might work for the card class I'll be teaching in October better.

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Now playing: Edvard Grieg - Notturno
via FoxyTunes

Honeybees and Stings Part 2

This is completely ironic since I just wrote about my memories as a child with honeybees recently, yesterday(Sept. 4th), I was stung by a bee! So, I now realize that I forgot how much it really hurts! Ouch!
I called my dad, since he's a beekeeper, to ask him about it since I'm limping around and it's swelling so much. I had told him how the bee's stinger was stuck in my knee where it stung me and he asked if I had pinched it out or scratched it. Well, I had pinched it out and apparently that releases more venom into the area so that's why it has swollen even more. If the stinger gets stuck in you then you are supposed to scratch it out instead. So, there's something to remember - scratch the stinger out! I know I'll be fine and I feel bad that the bee most likely died since it lost its stinger but I want to scream also. Hopefully, in a few days, it will stop swelling and heal. Then I'll forget about the hurt of the sting once again and go back to liking honey.
I was with Hope when I was stung by the honeybee because it happened at the dentist office parking lot. I started to reminisce and this experience took me back in time to 7th grade when I was stung by a yellow jacket about six times at the school bus stop. It had crawled up my pant leg and became trapped and just kept stinging away. It was in the same knee, my right one, and I remember it swelling pretty bad too. I had to actually pinch the yellow jacket in my pant leg until it died and stopped stinging me. I was afraid to let go of it on the bus full of jr. high school students. I didn't want to scream out or draw any attention to myself about the situation or risk the very real possibility of being teased. So, I held the yellow jacket firmly in my pant leg until I got home and let go. I saw that it was huge and then I screamed. My mom was scared and came to help me. I can still feel the cold ice packet that she put on it. I was relieved for a bit. She still remembers that experience also. I've lived through being stung a few times now, I can do it again. Wish me luck!
Btw, Hope did great at getting her filling at the dentist. She was a darling patient and didn't have the laughing gas either by her own insistence, they told me. Hope, you always impress me!

just some cards I've made







First of all, I'm new to posting my cards or papercraft items so bear with me. I wanted to post some cards that I've been working on this weekend. I haven't done anything with papercrafting for quite some time-about 18 months or more. So, when I was asked to teach a cardmaking class, I was surprised they still wanted me to. Also, I thought it was the perfect opportunity to get back into it. Anyway, this is what I've come up with. I don't really think the pictures do them justice. I did my best in taking them though.
The thanks card is a design from my sister-in-law, Amy, sent me that she created. I took her idea and this is my version of her card. On the flamingo b-day card that is a Stampin' Up stamp and the paper is Elsie. The hope stamps are Close to my heart - Spunky Alphabet and I used a flower punch on the bottom. A fun technique that I came up with. Too bad, you can't see the inking and pattern paper because I thought it looks really cool. The red card is actually a deep burnt orange red color and the accents are orange and black. I thought these colors were perfect for fall. Anyone know the new fall colors and trends this year, though? The quote on this card reads: To love and be loved is to feel the sun from both sides. I love that quote so it's on my sidebar!
I'd love to hear your feedback, if you'd care to comment, so I can be sure to have some great card kits made up for the class which is coming up on Oct. 18th. Thanks for looking.

Vivaldi on a Sunday Morning

I usually listen to classical music on a Sunday morning and today is no exception. I put in one of my favorite C.D.'s and it is Vivaldi - The Four Seasons. It speaks to my soul. I love to hear the quiet moments and the intense. It helps me relax and enter another dimension where all I have to do is listen and dream.

the tooth fairy confessions


Since this week has been a tough one for Nessa(see post), I've been thinking a lot of the tooth fairy in our house lately. Nessa kindly reminded me that the tooth fairy at our house is not very good. We have to e-mail it often to remind the fairy of its duty or at least that's how I explain it to my children.


Anyway, a funny story came up that my children remember happened to Nessa when once, out of sheer desperation, I had asked my husband to help me with improving the tooth fairy operations. Of course, I can't remember everything but Nessa had remembered. Our recent conversation went something like this:


"Mom, don't you think the tooth fairy is forgetful?"


"Yes, I think so."


"One time the tooth fairy gave me a sucker under my pillow."


"What?! A sucker...what do you mean? I don't remember that. I don't think that's what...I(um, cough) I mean the tooth fairy would do."


"Don't you remember the tooth fairy gave me a sucker, you know, a lollipop?"


"I just don't get it, why?"


"That's what I was wondering the next morning. I didn't think suckers were good for your teeth. That's what the dentist said when I told him about it."


"Oh, great. Well, I'll have to talk to the other tooth fairy about this."


"Yeah, tell the tooth fairy I'd rather have some money like other kids get."


"I'll keep that in mind."


As you can just imagine what I, as a mom, was thinking from the above dialogue like what was the dentist really thinking when Nessa told her about tooth fairy sucker's and so on...?Anyway, when Nessa put her certificate from loosing this last tooth - actually having it pulled at the dentist's - the tooth fairy was determined to give money.

Well, as we skip to the next morning, it turns out the poor tooth fairy was still a bit forgetful due to a late night being on call, so to speak, but managed to slip $3.00 dollars under her pillow in the hours during breakfast without being caught in mid-morning daylight. The usual is $2 but an extra dollar for Nessa's bravery and having a forgetful tooth fairy couldn't hurt either.

Maybe, the tooth fairy needs to set an e-mail alert program or cell phone alert or something.....?

Luckily, Nessa's happier with her money this time like all the other kids that have normal tooth fairies.

Time After Time

I used to listen to the original version of this song by Cyndi Lauper many times when I was a teenager. Needless to say, I really liked it. So, when I found this on YouTube I was ecstatic when I came across an acoustical version of this song by my favorite singer, Rob Thomas. Now, I like it even more and find myself singing it around the house lately. I almost feel like a teenager again. If you want, listen and see what you think of it.

Honeybees and Stings





This is my brother, Mike's recent favorite memory. He sent me these pictures which I really appreciated. They are pictures of him and my dad smoking out a beehive all decked out in their beekeeping gear. These pictures really brought back the memories for me of when I was a little girl and I had helped my dad with the beehives.

I remember wearing the white beekeeping suit that my mom had sewn for me and really hoping that I wouldn't get stung. Even though, I'd been stung before, I just didn't like it. I dreaded that possibility because even when you might expect a bee sting, for some reason, they still take you for surprise somehow. It hurts!

After the honey was harvested from the beehives, we'd come home and the real work would begin. I remember watching my dad as he handled each honeycomb carefully and sheared it just right with a heated knife to produce the honey dripping process. He'd then place them in a big silver barrel that had a handle on it that we would turn and turn and turn until our arms were weak and tired. All of the children took turns doing the turning, but I'm sure my dad still did a lot more of it. It took a lot of turning just to get one bucket of honey. I never could believe how slow the process really was. How much work and dedication it took. I admired my dad's stamina, not only to harvest the honey but to let all of his children help him do it.

My dad would put the honey into jars and honey bears that we would store or give away to people to enjoy.

I still remember when he would make wheat bread and let us put honey on it as it was warm and fresh from the oven. It was soooo good!

I also remember eating bits of the sheared honey comb and it tasted so incredible. We would chew and chew it up like gum in our mouths until it started to taste like wax. Then spit it out into the trash can.

My dad also made lots of candles with the leftover honeycomb. They really smelled good when he burnt them. He was always looking for uses for the honeycomb and he didn't like things to go to waste if he could help it become something practical and useful.

I also remember him teaching us about the bees and how they made honey. I remember my dad getting little boxes of bees in the mail and watching them buzz around in the tiny box. I know how important the queen bee is to the hive. I know that there are worker bees, who do a lot of work, and drones who don't do as much. It fascinated me and I thought about it a lot. I still love the taste of honey and I think I always will.

Riding in an Airplane

In July, I rode in an airplane to go and visit family and friends in Ut. I don't fly very much at all and I was traveling by myself with my 9 mo. old baby boy as well. To say I was suffering from a little bit of flight nerves and anxiety was a bit of an understatement. I was terrified about getting through security, missing my flight, losing luggage, etc.. you name it and I was worrying way too much.
First, my friend Erin drove me to the airport at 5 in the a.m. which was so very nice of her (thank you, Erin.) I felt bad because she had to put up with me so worried and freaking out a bit. We had a hard time finding an entrance that wasn't blocked by road construction so we ended up following a cab into the airport. I made it there and it seemed really close to the time that my plane would be leaving. I was completely out of my comfort zone so I started sweating profusely. Somehow, I made through and basically ran with my baby to the gate. As I was boarding, a young lady came up to me, introduced herself and offered to help me carry the baby's car seat or diaper bag. I let her help me. She sat by me and helped me through my transfer and everything. I really needed it and I was happy to realize how nice people can be. It meant so much to me. Now, I worry that I didn't thank her for helping me.

Anyway, the reason I thought about this now is because I happened accross this comedy routine that Ellen did about planes: (WARNING: I didn't catch it but it states that she curses)


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WYvm-xRByA


I thought this was funny and more typical of an airplane ride unlike mine that turned out so pleasantly. Anyway, my point is it really is unique in this day and age when a person can open up, help a complete stranger and be so nice with nothing bad happening for either party.

So, Amy-Jo, if you happen to read this I'd like to say THANKS!
I had a great vacation and I also made it home without any trouble. I didn't really meet anyone like Amy-Jo again.

Last but not least, I want to say thank you to Amanda and Jason for making sure I was picked up at the airport when I arrived back home. You're great friends!

new quiz

I couldn't help but take another quiz and this one came out about right for me, I think.




Your Five Factor Personality Profile



Extroversion:



You have medium extroversion.

You're not the life of the party, but you do show up for the party.

Sometimes you are full of energy and open to new social experiences.

But you also need to hibernate and enjoy your "down time."



Conscientiousness:



You have medium conscientiousness.

You're generally good at balancing work and play.

When you need to buckle down, you can usually get tasks done.

But you've been known to goof off when you know you can get away with it.



Agreeableness:



You have high agreeableness.

You are easy to get along with, and you value harmony highly.

Helpful and generous, you are willing to compromise with almost anyone.

You give people the benefit of the doubt and don't mind giving someone a second chance.



Neuroticism:



You have medium neuroticism.

You're generally cool and collected, but sometimes you do panic.

Little worries or problems can consume you, draining your energy.

Your life is pretty smooth, but there's a few emotional bumps you'd like to get rid of.



Openness to experience:



Your openness to new experiences is high.

In life, you tend to be an early adopter of all new things and ideas.

You'll try almost anything interesting, and you're constantly pushing your own limits.

A great admirer of art and beauty, you can find the positive side of almost anything.

fun quiz

You Belong in 1957
You're fun loving, romantic, and more than a little innocent. See you at the drive in!


Not exactly what I was thinking...so I took the quiz again:


You Belong in 1986
Wild, over the top, and just a little bit cheesy. You're colorful at night - and successful during the day.


Now, isn't that more like me. Ha, Ha! Time warp, I'm caught between two worlds, I guess...

Comedy Routine


I like to laugh as much as the next guy. So, when my friend, Anne, sent me this e-mail about the comedian Tim Hawkins, I sat around the computer with my kids watching You Tube and laughing tonight. We had fun together singing Subway, and talking about funny things in life. My personal favorite tonight was about the playground - I have my own playground stories from when I was growing up but I'll post that another time.
My kids mentioned to me that I had some pretty funny comedy routine's that I've written & performed for them. So, I was thinking it might be fun to write them up and post them here. Maybe you'll laugh and maybe you won't, but since this is a blog, I won't know that unless you tell me. Anyway, have fun with my funny, good, clean humorous stories anyway. (Jared you'll forgive me later, right? I make you laugh every day because you know I'm a piece of work, right?)
Here goes nothing:

Thousand Dollar Clothes Rack

So, the topic at our house lately has been about whether or not to join a gym. I really want to because I need to do something to get myself exercising and on my way to loosing a bit as well. It's funny that this has come up later because two years ago, I had another friend who had joined a gym and I wanted to then as well. So, I brought this idea up to my husband, Jared and that got him thinking and his mind reeled to an idea of a home gym. We had a lot of discussions about this and typically they went something like this:

"Oh, honey, I'd really like to exercise more and my friend is joining a gym. Maybe that's what I could do as well. What do you think?" (Julie)

"That sounds great! I think you should exercise more - I mean - we both should." (Jared)

"I know, so what do you think about the gym?"

"Well, I've got a lot of concerns about that. Have you thought it all through because I have a great idea of making a home gym. We can both exercise right here at home."

"Oh, but honey, I'm home all the time. I'd like to get away, out of the house, to exercise."

"What would you do with the kids while you exercised at the gym?"

"They've got it all set up for that - a little play room just for them. I don't know all the details of how it works but I'd drop off the kids and exercise, then I'd pick them up when I'm done."

"I think if you had a home gym then you can watch the kids while you exercise. Right here in the privacy and comfort of our own home. I really want a home gym."

"Okay, if you really think we won't use it as a clothes rack."

So, we went looking around for home gym equipment and tried out quite a few machines and with our tax return money we bought a stationary bike and eliptical-type machine. At first, it seemed great, even fun. As time wore on, the fun wore off and exercise is just plain hard work with little benefits unless you stick with it over long periods of time. I know home gyms can work for some people and they can be great but I think for me it's not working out. Perhaps, it's because at first we put the exercise machines in the garage. Well, we live in TX and it gets really hot in the garage. I mean, really hot.
Since we realized that wasn't working then we moved them to our master bedroom. Well, at first it worked a bit. Our kids have loved the machines and really used them. They like to do things like see how fast they can make it go and ride them backwards. Zayah and Gracie feel like it's their own personal monkey bars. Also, now its too convenient for Jared to use to put his freshly ironed shirts on and that's exactly what he does. So, one day I just couldn't resist and I teased him by saying, "So, honey, how's the home gym working for you? I mean, how do you like your thousand dollar clothes rack."

My Life in Google Image

I saw this on my friend, Becky's blog and I thought it would be fun for me to try.
Ok, So this is what you can do, if you want to...When you are wondering what to post on your blog or, perhaps, completely bored out of your mind and can't sleep at night, after you have checked all your e-mails, checked out your friends' blogs, window shopped at your favorite online stores and still aren't tired.... YOU USE GOOGLE TO FIND IMAGES THAT DESCRIBE WHO YOU ARE . This is what I came up with...

my first name:


my age:


town where I live:


my husband's name:


favorite color:


place I grew up:


favorite place on earth:


my first job:


my first love:










Grandma's first name:



Favorite food:


Pet's name:








Favorite Drink:


What I studied in college:


Somewhere I'd like to go:


I hope this will post alright. If not, I did my best. I always have trouble posting images to blogspot. Oh well, there it is - my life in google images. Perhaps, you've learned something about me or maybe you already knew me. It's fun to see anyway.

Something funny today


I need to get this blog going so how about a little humor from my daily life.

Yesterday, I went shopping with my daughter, Hopie. I noticed a bumper sticker on a car that said "I'd rather be shopping." I told Hopie "I'd rather be blogging." She laughed and rolled her eyes. I also came up with another one like "Blog your life away." This a.m. when I was IMing with my brother-in-law I came up with "Blog, you're it!" and he liked it. Maybe I should go into the bumper sticker business. What do you think?

While I was IMing this morning, Zayah came up to me and wanted a can of tuna. So, as I was opening it up for him, he randomly says to me: "Mom, did you know that tuna comes from Mermaids?" Of course I laughed and thought it was hilarious and cute. Perhaps, later I'll set the record straight but for now it's too funny.

I've posted a picture of Zayah trying to drive at age 2.

Wondering about J.M.'s new album

I've been wondering what to blog about again for some time. Then I noticed an e-mail about John Mayer's new album that just came out so I thought I'd blog about that. If any of you are fans than you might like this video of him singing "In Your Atmosphere."
I remember hearing his music, not realizing it was him and I liked it. So, I happened upon him late one night singing for a PBS program called SoundStage. It was great because they had him performing his songs and also had clips about how he'd come up with some of them. I thought he was quite interesting and I'm always fascinated with singers who write a lot of their own songs like he does. It's the writer in me - I just like to hear about how someone comes up with ideas and what their process is like for writing. Plus, I've always dreamed of writing songs as well so I'm sure that has something to do with all of that.
I'm not sure if I'll actually buy the album and I actually don't have any of his albums yet because I keep thinking that I'm going to get an i-pod or mp3 type device and load it up then. Someday...I hope for that but for now I can't justify it. Well, anyway, I'm still a fan of John Mayer. His style reminds me a little it about Chris Isaak whose music I used to like in '89. Well, actually I think Chris Isaak had just a one song I liked but I would listen to it over and over on my Walkman radio at night. Anyway, that just brings back memories.

Online Again

After computer troubles and then connection issues with my ISP, I'm finally back online again. I hope to contribute more to this blog I started.
We celebrated a very quiet fourth of July. Jared had to work and I took my children to a fourth of July Festival they had at our church. I think we really had a lot of fun. I'll post pictures on the family site and a recipe of the yummy salad I made for the pot luck lunch as well if you'd like to check it out as well. After that we came home, just relaxed and watched movies together
Here's a quote that embodies my patriotic feelings on the fourth of July:
"There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America." -William J. Clinton
It is for the future of America that all of us keep trying to improve it and that we don't give up. There is always a little more that we can do personally and little better that we can become.

Computers and Dental Surgery

I suppose that I should get this blog going again since my computer has been fixed a few weeks now. My computer had been having trouble and thanks for my friend, Amanda's husband, Jason, who knows a thing or two about computers; he was able to revamp the whole thing. Now, hopefully, I can keep the computer running smooth and operating great. If not, I know who to ask, right? Thanks again, Jason!
I've also just had some dental oral surgery on May 28th of last week. I've been recuperating from that with the help of medication, of course. I've had moments of glee to intense pain which is increasingly ceasing now-thanks so much for that. I wasn't too worried about the whole procedure until we were driving there in the early morning. Jared and I were stopped at red light and I noticed the car in front of us was a beautiful shade of gray. I then realized it was a hearse and I exclaimed sarcastically that maybe it was a bad omen. Jared just had to tell everyone at the dentist office what I said about that but they convinced me I was in good hands. Fortunately, I was. It all turned out well - I'm still here and doing great!
It was also kind of funny how as I was going under the sedation medication that the dentist said to me, "You'll feel like you've had a couple of margarita's." I haven't had a couple of margarita's ever in my life so I didn't really understand that statement. I soon realized I wouldn't be anything but depressed after that. During the procedure, I had been told to raise my hand for pain. After I raised my hand a couple of times, I decided it would take forever if I kept raising my hand so I decided to count to five and surrender myself to the impending pain. The next thing I remember was a long string rubbing against my cheek, I went to grab it and the dentist immediately put my hand down, told me he was stitching me up and I was almost done. I guess it wasn't too bad after all and I'm grateful for a good periodontist in Dr. Brandon Sehlke.
Eating hasn't been what it used to be - a bit of a chore now. I love to eat so that's been tough to manage but I'm getting used to it and finding a way to eat anyway. I don't think I'll loose any weight though since ice cream feels so good to eat right now. Ice cream is amazing actually! I'm also enjoying bean & cheese soft taco's. I'm trying a lot of new Mexican Restaurants to find the best soft taco's out there since my favorite place, Juego's de Mexico, closed down. I miss that place! Nice people too.
I'll try to keep you posted more now. Oh, my children wanted me to mention from my last post that I also had a Disney Beauty and the Beast poster framed & hung up in our house before too.

Tag, I'm it!

Marcia and Amanda have tagged me to share 7 wild, wacky or obscure things about my life. A lot of you know me so well because I'm a "wear everything on my shirt-sleeve" type person. I once heard that if you tell your real age you'll tell people anything & I 'm just like that in real life. So, I suppose I need to get my blog going and I'll indulge you. Here comes the seven:

1) I wanted to be an actress since high school but I never took drama. In college, I thought it would be cool to take drama but found out that I get severe stage fright so bad that I can't remember my lines. I was good at making up lines but they don't really want you to do that. It changes things and messes it up for the other actors to follow you. I did find out that I'm a great prop mistress and a lot of things behind the scenes.

2) I attended a Bryan Adams concert once on a date. It was fun but I felt guilty the whole time because I knew that I didn't like the guy as much as he liked me and my mom informed me before I went that I was leading him on. I'm sure the guy hates
Bryan Adams' music now because I told him that afterwards and you can just imagine how well that went over with him. It's ironic fourteen years later that I married Jared who loves B.A.'s old school '80's music. I also have a hard time listening to him without thinking of this 'oh, I had to be so honest' incident.

3) In sixth grade, my teacher decided it was vital that we learned to play chess. The class champion was a kid named Bart. I decided one day in my cocky 6th grade attitude that I could take him on. I ended up wining the match and it made Bart really mad. So, we kept having re-matches. I kept winning and Bart just didn't like that. I was the only one who could beat him but I never won enough matches to be considered the class champion as he was. I just messed up his perfect record which annoyed him. Bart went on to bigger & better things like winning State in the chess club in high school. My glory was limited to 6th grade with chess.

4) I earned a "Ducktorate" degree from Walt Disney World. I worked there for a college co-op program & they gave us the option to take classes about film making & animation. It was fun & I learned a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff. My favorite class was screen writing. The only problem was that I wrote a version of "It's a Wonderful Life." I still remember the teacher pointing that out for me in front of the class. I hadn't seen the movie yet at that point in my life. I made sure to watch it and it's my Christmas tradition to see it each year. It's one of my favorites now.

5) One of my first memories that I can recall is when I was about four; I was getting ready and excited to go swimming in a little inflated pool that my mom set up for me. On my way out, I stepped on a bumblebee and it stung me. Ouch! It really hurt. I still don't like going barefoot outside to this day.

6) Posters I've hung in my room before: Donny & Marie Osmond the one in which they are wearing purple socks and yellow outfits, Dorothy Hamill wearing her blue ice skating uniform, Brian Boitano wearing his civil war like ice skating uniform, a black & white poster of Marilyn Monroe and a typical cowboy poster of, you guessed it, George Strait. I actually found some of my posters online. Anyway, I'm not much into posters anymore.

7) After thinking a while, I asked Isaiah what he thought one cool thing about me was and he said "because you feed me." When I prompted him for something else he said "because you're nice to me." I think that's pretty cool too. I do like to eat food and I'm glad to hear he thinks I'm a nice mom today. Needless to say, I'm flattered. I'll tell you something from when I was his age now - I loved watching Mr. Roger's Neighborhood back then and I wanted to be just like Henrietta Pussycat.

I'm going to tag:

Bonnie

Sam

Hopie and Jared

Lindsey

Jan

Trenda

Let us know 7 things about you if you want to.

The rules:
1. Link to your tagger and post these rules on your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by leaving their names as well as links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they are tagged by leaving a comment on their blog.

Thanks for reading! I think I'll start writing my "100 things about me post" before my 100th post. In between making my toddlers lunch, feeding the baby, & potty training Gracie that took a while for me to write but it was fun after all.

Focus on Reading

I've been having a bit of trouble focusing on reading or similar tasks lately. I'm sure a lot of that has to do with having a 5 1/2 month old baby boy, 2 toddlers and 3 school-aged children. Ya think? So, this past week when I started reading Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte and remembering what I've read - I was ecstatic! It takes a bit to get through a chapter because of distraction but I'm glad of it because I'm actually reading.
I've realized that I love to read. I read Jane Eyre a long time ago, in high school, and I remember liking it then but now I'm really enjoying it with my more mature eyes that I have now. Things are different somehow, more rich and expressive to me.
When I read this exchange between Helen and Jane, I could really relate with Helen's daydreaming. I felt like that must have been my cause for not focusing on what I've been reading. Here's the exchange quoted from the text I have, pg. 69:
Jane asks Helen:
"And when Miss Temple teaches you, do your thoughts wander then?"
Helen replies and I love this:
"No, certainly, not often; because Miss Temple has generally something to say which is newer than my own reflections: her language is singularly agreeable to me, and the information she communicates is often just what I wish to gain."
Oh, I'd like to be described as such. I know I have friends that are worthy of this description and I'm grateful for that. I love learning and listening to what others have to say of value.
Well, when I finish reading Jane Eyre, I'll post a book review on 5-squared. If you can't wait until then, feel free to check out Jane Eyre and read it for yourself.

Poetry Selection in print!


My poetry selection has been printed in the Sunday newspaper. It's pretty exciting and I wanted to be sure to post the link for all of you to read the poem this week. I hope you like it. I know I did. Be sure to read to the bottom and see what I've been up to. It will be up until Thursday.

Check it out here, if you haven't already:

Poetry : In Praise of Dandelions


Introduction

I've been literally dreaming of this blog for way too long. If you can't sleep because you're dreaming about writing blogs then I better just start my personal blog and write it! Tonight is a perfect opportunity anyway because my 2 yr. old isn't asleep yet. So, "ToyStory"is on for her and I feel like writing. Oh, don't worry even if she was asleep I might be writing because I feel like writing a lot lately. I just haven't been very good on following up on that urge. I have a lot of ideas swimming in my head all the time. I just need to focus and get it on the page. In the past, some of my best work has been done in the wee hours of the night when I think too much and can't sleep.
Are you wondering what a "jflamingo" is yet? Well, it's me! I made it up when I decided on what to name my first e-mail account. My name is Julie hence the "j" and I love learning about flamingo's hence "flamingo."
A few things you could know about me already is that I'm an alright wife to Jared and a reasonable mother to our six children and I like that there is never a dull moment around my house. What I also like besides motherhood is that I have other hobbies and interests which add color to who I am. That's vibrant!
On this blog, I'll share my thoughts or another word for that would be my "reflections," on life and what I like best. Or not. We'll just see what happens.
For now, welcome to "Reflections of a jflamingo..."

About this blog

Welcome Readers~to my blog! A tiny extension of myself and my life. Here, I'll share this journey through my top passions in my life - reading, writing, and creating. You can expect to read poetry, view my papercrafts and read design related posts. Every once in a while, I hope you'll grasp an honest feel of my heart. If you haven't noticed, I love flamingos! I think they are beautiful birds. *Thanks for your attention.*
She is pure Alice in Wonderland, and her appearance and demeanor are a nicely judged mix of the Red Queen and a flamingo.
~Truman Capote

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    I love living my life through reading books, creating beautiful things to make people happy, and sharing snipits of the world as I see it through writing, blogging or designing.

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