Saturday, August 22, 2009

Bread and Lots of Butter

After watching The Time Traveler's Wife with several girlfriends this afternoon, we headed to Olive Garden for some soup, salad and of course breadsticks. After our waitress brought out a second heaping bowl of breadsticks, I selected one and then commented rather absentmindedly, "I wish I had a bowl of butter to dip this into." The three girls I was with thought this rather amusing considering they were already slathered with butter and garlic.

When our waitress returned to check on us, I mentioned that dinner was great and the only thing that could have made it better was some butter. She smiled and promptly returned with one of those single serving type packets, with butter wrapped in gold foil and the Land-o-Lakes seal. She asked if I would like it melted and without hesitation I said, "If you wouldn't mind." (Note: Our waitress had already endeared herself to me because of her laugh, and this only sealed the deal for getting a great tip.)

Just as I had wished, I was able to enjoy my third (and final) breadstick of the evening by dipping it in butter. Much more butter than most people enjoy but I'm not most people. I love butter. I'm not just a bread and butter type of girl, I'm a bread and LOTS of butter type of girl. I don't mess around when it comes to adorning toast, croissants and english muffins with golden, translucent, savory butter.

PS-I'm not sure when my love for butter started but I have also been known to consume small tubs of cinnamon butter at restaruants in exchange for having my dinner bought. You can ask my friend Brian about the time we went to Billie Jack's in Williston, FL....that was some good eatin!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Random Reviews

It's not the end of the week yet but I feel ready to give some random reviews of my happenings and wanderings of the past seven days.

  • God has been so generous in providing a really solid start to my third year of teaching. I have a tremendous set of freshmen coming through my Ag program and they have really supportive parents. So supportive in fact that I had a line, yes a line, at Meet the Teacher night last night. It was only scheduled to last 1 1/2 hours but I stayed 35 minutes longer because the line was never ending....
  • I ate a fried egg sandwich on sourdough bread everyday this week. I have this really annoying habit of falling in love with some type of food and then eating it day-in and day-out until I become sick of it. I've done this many types before with things such as cheese crisps (senior year at UA), bean and cheese burritos (junior year at UA) and green apples for lunch (the past year). The funny thing about eggs is that I love so much I rarely tire of them.
  • My dog has been destroying plastic water bottles and milk jugs everyday this week. She has fantastic little chompers and I try to keep her occupied chewing up recyclable material as opposed to killing my poor plants. First I freeze the bottles with water and once I set them out she has a hay day trying to pick up the frozen bottles.
  • I have enjoyed amazing sunrises each day this week as I walked Johnnie Reb (my plastic chewing dog) around 4:45am. It's been a peaceful and energizing way to start the day and I am hopeful about making this a daily habit this school year.
  • Anna (my sister) and I tried a new restaruant on Tuesday with Kami, a friend of ours. It was called Orchid Thai Garden (Dysart and Indian School). The food was pretty good but my favorite part of the whole experience was the 70-something owner who was named Perry. He shared that he had been traveling to Thailand for the past 20 years about two times a year. He must really love that place. He was eager to share his love for Thai food with us. He gave us a Thai ice tea on the house so we could try it....not bad but I probably wouldn't order it on my own. It was very earthy tasting. If you live on the west side of the Valley and need a Thai fix, check this place out.

I am looking forward to the weekend and I hope you are too!

Monday, August 3, 2009

Donate Blood Marrow

I'm writing today's entry for my friend Summer who was diagnosed with severe aplastic anemia in February 2009. This rare disease has basically stopped her body from producing red and white blood cells and platelets thus making her super susceptible to infection and also making her very fatigued. At this point, Summer has already been through a treatment that involved blood transfusions to replenish her supply of red and white blood cells and platelets. Her body responded for awhile but has reached a plateau in terms of improvement. Currently, her physician is considering a second round of this same treatment and if that doesn't work she'll need to have a bone marrow transplant. Please be praying for Summer's FULL recovery--her body needs to be able to produce both types of blood cells and platelets so that she can return to her normal life which includes caring for a 9 month old. Please also be praying that this second round of treatment is a success so that they don't have to resort to a bone marrow transplant.

Now onto my next request and the subject of this blog. Most people have heard of donating blood but not as many have heard of donating blood marrow. As I mentioned in the previous paragraph, Summer's last resort for treatment is doing a bone marrow transplant. The thing is, she doesn't have perfect match registered in the nationwide bone marrow transplant. That's where you come in-if you read my blog I would like you to prayerfully consider donating bone marrow or at least spreading the word to your family and friends about this life giving opportunity.

To register in the blood marrow bank, you simply request a kit and then swab your cheek. It's really simple, and honestly pain free, and once the registry is updated, you could be a life-saving match for someone within a week. There is no fee associated with donating bone marrow--and even better is the procedure that they use to extract your bone marrow. One way that your bone marrow is harvested is a process called Stem Cell Pheresis. In stem cell pheresis, a donor gives only stem cells (undifferentiated cells that can develop into any type of cell) rather than whole blood. Prior to the donation procedure, the donor receives an injection of a special type of protein (growth factor) that stimulates the bone marrow to release stem cells into the bloodstream. Whole blood is drawn from the donor, and a machine that separates the blood into its components selectively removes the stem cells and returns the rest of the blood to the donor. For more information on how to donate bone marrow, please visit or stop by a blood bank today and tell them that you would like to register in the bone marrow bank.

Finally, there is a replacement blood and bone marrow drive for Summer on Sunday, August 16th in Auberry, CA. If you know of anyone who lives in California who might be interested, please pass this info along to them.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Aunt Katy the Nanny

I played nanny for my brother and sister-in-law a week ago while they traveled to Oklahoma for my sister-in-law's high school reunion. While I never thought motherhood was easy, I have a new found appreciation for the day and night job that mothering is. Each day started around 4:45am when P, my youngest nephew, usually woke me up by crawling into my bed. About five minutes later G would follow and ask me what I was making for breakfast. I enjoyed my three and half days with my nieces and nephews and would readily agree to do it again. Enjoy the picture anthology below...
Notice P sleeping on the floor...not sure why. He went down for his nap really easily, no persuasion required, so sleeping on the floor wasn't a product of a fit. I just liked the picture...pretty soon he won't be taking naps anymore and I won't have a chance to snap fun photos like this.

We went to see the movie "Ice Age, Dawning of the Dinosaurs." P got a nap before we went so he didn't sleep on the way back. G however refused a nap prior to the movie, so she zonked out on the way home.

Since my parent's were also out of town for my cousin's wedding, we made several trips to my folk's place each day. My nieces and nephews are drawn to collect snails like most kids are drawn to candy so each time we came back, a few snails made the trip back with us too. D is posing next to the "snail city" we created on top of the dog crate...everyone know that snails needed a good home to rest in while we went inside.

J is big enough to ride in the front now...he was holding our leftover popcorn tub on our way back from the movie.

I can't get enough of this kid. P wants to wear his boots no matter the occasion and you'll notice that his boots were perfect for riding his little bike around the driveway.