Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Summer Fun Hodgepodge

Visit Joyce and join the fun!

1.  I recently read here about four secrets to happiness from around the world. They were-

Overcome your fears by facing them head on, allow yourself to relax and reset, work to live versus living to work, and find the good in life. Not sure if these are the actual secret to happiness, but which of the four do you struggle with most? Which one comes most easily to you?

The one I struggle with most is facing my fears head on.  That usually is not the first thing that comes to mind. Actually I'd prefer to avoid most of my fears (closed spaces, snakes, etc.).  The one that comes most easily to me is to find the good in life.  As crazy as the world seems there are still many good things in it for us to enjoy.

2. How would you spend a found $20 bill today?

I would take the family out for ices or ice cream.

3. Ego trip, power trip, guilt trip, round trip, trip the light fantastic, or trip over your own two feet...which 'trip' have you experienced or dealt with most recently? Explain.

The other day I tripped over my own two feet.  I didn't fall but rather flew a few feet in front of me as I was walking.  I think it may have been the throw rug but it seemed as if it was my own two feet!

4. If you could master any physical skill in the world what would it be, and how would you use that skill?

I've always admired runners.  I guess that skill could be used to raise money for a good cause.

5. As July draws to a close, let's take inventory of our summer fun. Since the official first day of (North American) summer (June 20th) have you...been swimming? Yes.  enjoyed an ice cream cone? Yes.  seen a summer blockbuster? Yes.  camped?  No.   eaten corn on the cob? No.  gardened?   No.  deliberately unplugged?   No.  watched a ballgame?   No.  picked fruit off the vine?  No.   taken a road trip?   No.  read a book?  No.  Are any of these activities on your must-do-before-summer-ends list?

The only one I would like to do is eat corn on the cob.  We used to eat it a lot but since hearing that most of the corn grown in the USA is GMO that has changed.  I may try to find some fresh, organic corn on the cob before the end of the summer.  

6. The Republican Presidential candidates will debate on August 6th. What's your question?

It is very simple....what will you do to help America get out of the mess it is in?

7. What's your most listened to song so far this summer?

I don't think I have one.  I like to scan the radio stations when I am in the car but I don't have any playlists that I listen to regularly.  I am feeling so out of it when it comes to technology.  How that happened, I do not know.  I need a crash course.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

How about a question?  I  know many of you at the Hodgepodge are quite talented in decorating and interior design.  Would you ever put a china cabinet and a server on the same wall, even if they would take up the entire length of the wall?

Thanks :)

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Light and Airy Hodgepodge

Visit Joyce and join the fun!

1. Is your home air conditioned? If it's not air conditioned, is that by choice? Did you grow up with air conditioning? If not how did you cope with the heat? Share about a time or place you remember as being too hot-the temperature kind of hot, lest anyone be confused.

Yes, we have air conditioning in the living room and bedrooms.  Yes, I grew up with air conditioning.  Our house was so cold that the throw blankets we had on our couches were often used by my friends.  They still remember that.  I do not tolerate the heat well.  I remember teaching in June and my classroom being so hot I would feel sick.  I had all kinds of fans, cooling neck wraps, even tried juicing watermelon.  

2. What's something in your life right now that falls under the heading 'up in the air'?

I can't say too much but general decision making for early Fall.

3. Your favorite light and airy dessert?

A root beer float.

4. When did you last feel like you were 'floating on air'?

I can't think of anything in particular.  In general I'd say those times when you see prayer answered in ways beyond what you thought.

5. Airport, airmail, airtight, airhead...which have you most recently encountered? Explain.

Airmail.  I was on the phone with my aunt who lives several states away yesterday and the post woman came to her door.  I sent her a small package and didn't put enough postage on it.  Instead of sending it back they just collected the remaining postage from her.  That is unlike me but I've had a lot on my mind and I guess I acted like an airhead.  Thankfully she knows me well enough that I wasn't embarrassed.

6.  Have you ever been to the Alps? If so where did you go? If not, is this a destination on your must-see list? If you were headed that direction this summer, which of the following would be your preferred activity...a gentle walk, a serious walk, a bike ride, a boat ride around one of the lakes, or summer snow skiing?

No, I haven't.  I am sure they are beautiful in person but it is not on my must-see list.  If I were there I would prefer a boat ride around one of the lakes.  I love snow, but have no desire to ski.

7. What is one saying or phrase that was considered 'cool' when you were growing up?

"Gag me with a spoon".  Yes, it was the 80s and Valley Girl talk was cool, even on Long Island.

8. Insert your own random thought here.

It has been very hot and humid the past few days.  Today is supposed to be less humid and oppressive and a nice summer day.  I'll still need the A/C though ;)


Wednesday, July 15, 2015

A Really Great Hodpepodge

Visit Joyce and join the fun!

1.July 15th is National Give Something Away Day.  What can you give away? Will you?

I have lots to give away as I am cleaning out my storage areas.  Yes I will give away clothes, toys and baby items.  I'm not sure if I will give anything away on July 15th, but I have been giving away things for the past few weeks and will be giving away more this week.

2. Do you have a mantra? Please share with the class if you feel comfortable doing so.

"I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me."  Philippians 4:13

3. Who does the grocery shopping in your house? How many times a week do you shop? Do you make a list or pray for inspiration in the produce aisle?

My husband does most of the grocery shopping.  Usually once a week with maybe a quick stop once or twice during the week.  I make a list after looking through the circulars and coupons.  For the most part, I plan what we will eat according to what is on sale.

4. Is there a TV show you're embarrassed to say you watch? You're going to tell us what it is, right?

I like to watch judge shows like Judge Judy, Judge Mathis, Judge Faith, etc.  Some of the cases are so ridiculous but for some reason I find it all really interesting ;)  Maybe because at one point I actually wanted to be a lawyer?

5. A recent article listed fifteen words we should eliminate from our (written) vocabulary in order to sound smarter-

that, went, honestly, absolutely, very, really, amazing, always, never, literally, just, maybe, stuff, things, and irregardless

Of the fifteen, which word is your most overused?

I would say really.  I often use it as a question....really?

6. So apparently dying your hair gray (in your youth!) is a thing right now. It's called 'The Granny Hair' trend. Your thoughts? 

Really?  Absolutely ridiculous.  What will they think up next?

7. A while back Buzz Feed asked members to share the most beautiful sentence they've read in a piece of literature. A hard thing to narrow down, at least for me, but let's try. What's one of the most beautiful sentences you've ever read in a piece of literature?

This is a really difficult question.  I am almost embarrassed to admit it...but I haven't read a book that is literature in a long time.  I had to use Google for help.

""Doubt thou the stars are fire; Doubt that the sun doth move; Doubt truth to be a liar; But never doubt I love."  by William Shakespeare in Hamlet

8. Insert your own random thought here.

Today is Amazon Prime Day.  There should be some really great deals going on.  I have my eye on a monogram necklace and I hope I can find a good deal.  I love Amazon Prime and think it is well worth $99 a year.  


Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Against the Tide, Troubled Waters Hodgepodge

Visit Joyce and join the fun!

1. When did you last 'swim against the tide'? Explain.

Last month when I spoke up and didn't agree with the rest of the group.  It had a good outcome but I felt like I couldn't just 'swim with the tide'.  I know that is vague but it wouldn't be appropriate to share details.

2. What's the last self-help or self-improvement book you read?

The bible.   
"as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue," 
2 Peter 1:3

3"Tolerance is a tremendous virtue, but the immediate neighbors of tolerance are apathy and weakness." (Sir James Goldsmith) 

Agree or disagree? Discuss. With civility please, because I think we have a good thing going in our very diverse (in geography, age, religion, political persuasion, ethnicity, marital status, upbringing, and cooking abilities)neighborhood here on This Side of the Pond.

I agree.  There is a way to be respectful and kind towards others without being tolerant of a particular behavior that you don't agree with.  I'm interested to read everyone's answers on this one in the This Side of the Pond neighborhood.  

4. What is one of your most vivid memories of the kitchen from your childhood?

Cleaning with my mother.  I remember the kitchen being orange at one time, and green at another.  I used to get down on the floor and lay on my stomach to clean and touch up the paint on the moldings.  I didn't mind doing it and it was a nice way to spend time with my mother doing something she loves (cleaning).  

5. How did/do your own children's summers compare with your summers as a child? If you're not a parent, answer as it relates to what you've observed about the current generation of children vs. your own childhood.

When I was a child there was a lot more freedom.  We would roam the neighborhood, ride our bikes to the pool, take the bus to the shopping mall, walk to the movies, and basically be outside until the street lights came on.  Well times have changed and I don't allow my children to do any of those things.  Unless they are with me or another trustworthy adult they don't go anywhere.  As they are getting older it is becoming difficult to figure out the delicate balance of responsibility and wisdom.  

6. Tell us what body of water you would most like to be on or near today, and why?

The Atlantic Ocean.  I'm an east coast girl and the ocean is my favorite body of water.  There is nothing like the sound of waves crashing while my feet are in the sand and looking out at God's beautiful creation.  It reminds me of how big God is and how small I am.  

7.  Share a favorite song about water, or a favorite song with the word water in it's title, or a favorite song to listen to as you sit beside the water.

"Like a Bridge Over Troubled Water" by Simon & Garfunkel.
8. Insert your own random thought here.

I feel like my answers today are very random.  Have a great rest of the week :)

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Stars, Cookie Dough and Your Smiling Face Hodgepodge

Visit Joyce and join the fun!

1. On Saturday July 4th America celebrates her Independence. (If you're not American,  feel free to answer in terms of a national holiday in your own country) What is your favorite thing about the day? Your favorite food on the 4th? Do you fly a flag at your house? Fireworks-yay or nay? Any special plans this year?

I love the 4th of July.  My daughter and I paint our toes with red, white and blue.  My favorite food is a good old cheeseburger hot off the BBQ.  Yes, we fly a flag at our house.  After this winter our flag was torn and needed to be taken down.  I haven't replaced it but will put out flags that I can stick into the ground.  Yay for fireworks.  Our usual plans have changed for this year so I'm not sure what we will be doing yet.  

2. What's something you recently got for free?

A $5 gift card from Target.  Technically it wasn't free because it was a promotion I received when I purchased another item but still it is free $5 to spend.  

3.  The Statue of Liberty, The Liberty Bell, The Washington Monument, or Mount many on the list have you seen? What is your favorite historical American monument, and why? 

I think I went to the Liberty Bell as a child but don't remember it.  I've never been to any of the listed, even though I live in New York.  I've seen The Statue of Liberty from a distance but never actually took the ferry there.  I'd say that is my favorite because there is just something about seeing her in the beautiful skyline.  

4. When it comes to the news are you more ostrich (stick my head in the sand) or hog (they have room to take a whole lot in)? How much attention have you given the recent news reports regarding ISIS and the acts of terror they've perpetrated against those who do not share their beliefs or support their cause?

I am more ostrich.  The news can really affect me so I try to limit it.  I like to know what is going on but try not to become engrossed in it.  I haven't given much attention to the recent news but I know it is happening.  

5. We're talking plain ice cream...vanilla, chocolate, or strawberry? Choose one.

Vanilla.  I love ice cream and all three flavors.  Sometimes I crave chocolate and strawberry is nice if it is an all natural brand.  I don't need to be in the mood for vanilla, you can never go wrong with that choice.  I eat coconut "ice cream" since going mostly dairy free and my favorite is chocolate chip cookie dough.  It is gluten free too!  

6. Share a song you love containing the word 'stars' in the lyrics or title?

"Your Smiling Face" by James Taylor.  One of the lyrics is:

"And I thank my lucky stars that you are who you are,
and not just another lovely lady set out to break my heart."

7. Describe and/or say goodbye to June with an acrostic. 

Okay, I love doing acrostic poems with my students and I could spend hours trying to come up with something, but I'm going with the first thing that comes to mind.

J- just day after day waiting for summer to come

U- usual days of racing to the end of the school year
N- now it's past and summer is here
E- endured, pressed on and met my goals!

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

 "If My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land." 2 Chronicles 7:14

I have a heavy heart as we head towards the 4th of July.  This nation is going further and further from what it was founded upon.  I pray for the future of our country.