Friday, July 31, 2009


Justin I've called "The Golden Child" for about 5 years now. He has this attitude that all will go right and even when others might look at his situation and think it is not going right, Justin doesn't ever see it that way.

Situation #1
When Justin was in high school he thought he didn't have a band final. A friend called him, waking him up, and told him there was a band final. With 10 minutes left in the class period Justin runs up to the band director, the band director has him play his part on percussion and all is fine.

Situation #2
Justin needs to get to the airport on Christmas Day after work. He gets to the airport early but all the parking is filled up. He drives around, his flight time getting closer and closer, he finally finds a place to park but its minutes to take off. Paul calls and tells the airline that he is on his way. They hold the plane for him!! He gets on the flight. It's all good.

Situation #3
Justin gets a call that he is late for work. He wakes up immediantly and says he will be right there. The manager meets Justin and sarcastically says, "Like to sleep in?" Several more times the manager makes a comment to Justin like "You are here on time today." Justin starts noticing the manager first and greeting him by name and saying, "How are you?" Next thing that happens is the manager asks Justin if the Hyatt can help him pay for college, help him get a job when he moves to San Antonio, etc...

I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles four things: A rainy day, the elderly, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights. Justin would handle all 4 in a positive way.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Complaint Free World

I am 5 days into being more direct with what I need instead of complaining to anyone standing near me. I had an exciting moment today when I realized that when I did talk to the person that I needed to about the problem (instead of 4 others who had no interest in the situation), the problem did get helped.
I think I avoid telling the person I need to approach about problems because I don't want anyone thinking I cannot handle things or I'm not easy going.
It's becoming easier not to complain. I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one. Sometimes the silence IS golden and I feel better.

Childhood memories

Things I remember
  1. Always able to talk to mom.

Riding the tractor out to the pond to roast hotdogs on a stick.

Swinging on a rope from hay bale to hay bale.

Dad building a skateboard out of a piece of wood and roller skate wheels.

Twirling with my friends to music on the front porch.

Building a tree house with wood we got from the new houses going up around us.

Riding my bike through the woods.

Going to the bowling alley for an ice cream cone.

I love you Mom and Dad for giving me a wonderful childhood.

Friday, July 24, 2009

The albatross

Love the title-I haven't decided if its the worry or this bracelet I'm wearing that is the albatross.

Two things:
1. In 6 months Paul and I will have been married 25 years and I would like to keep him until then. August 18 he goes back to the audiologist. They told him his syptoms sounded like a tumor not just hearing loss.

He also needs to make an appointment with a heart doctor. The constant high blood pressure coupled with his brother needing bypass surgery has him worried.

2. On a lighter note--I'm thinking if I don't put the "Complaint Free World" bracelet on then I don't have to do it. This is only the second day and I made it really well until my Masters class last night then I started being critical of Rachel. Of all people, I pick on someone who has done wrong to no one.

Goal for the day: Be a positive influence

Monday, July 20, 2009


Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

Favorite part of life:

Paul: yes, dear (as he makes a face behind a wall)

Me: Are you sticking your tongue out at me?

Jacob: No, but he's making a really weird face.

1st grader: I wouldn't have hit them with a rock on their hand if they wouldn't have put their hand under the rock. (such perfect logic)

Me: Jacob you know you are not allowed to kiss girls.
Jacob: Too late.

Jacob: There was a friend at VBS from my school.
Me: If they're from your school then they are in our neighborhood. You should have them over.
Jacob: It's a girl.
Paul: about you talking at school.

Ms. Sue: Don't get into trouble because I work at a small private school and I don't have bail money.

I just read on my brother's facebook: Choose the path that takes you toward something you love, instead of the one that takes you away from something you fear.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Plan for the Best

I'm planning on having a very good day today.

This picture was taken in Thomaston, Georgia but it could be the north side of San Antonio.

Today I have a busy day beginning with doctor visits (these knees are just not working and I'm told they aren't going to without surgery), then I go to work a 6 hour day (not too long), then to the Zimmers to learn about the Brazil campaign for next year and last I pick up Jacob from his trip to Oklahoma.

Jacob has got to be the quietest, most easy going 13 year old. I've missed his level headed look on life. Thank you Scott for filling in last night and talking great wisdom.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A complaint free world

Leah Farmer is doing a non-complaining campaign. The book is called "A Complaint Free World." :) She says, "The point is to eliminate complaining. A lot of people don't realize that most of us can express the exact same concerns with almost the exact same words without the tone and intent of complaining. So a lot of it is learning to express myself in a more positive and well-thought out way while eliminating whining, gossiping, etc. The problem I struggled with the most was complaining about things to people who had no power to change the situation. For me the goal is to change my own outlook, communication style, ability to recognize blessings, and reduce the effect of my negativity on those around me. "

Well said Leah.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Remember My Name

We are so proud when we see our children learning. They smile, roll over, sit up, crawl, walk! Maybe its the teacher in me, but I like the "other" first: writing their name, counting by 2's, learning the multiplication tables AND when they surpass me in knowledge. Justin is very good at explaining to me about things that I know nothing about. I love it.

Today while moving the desk Jacob had outgrown out of his room, I noticed he had carved his name on it! I called him over in unbelief that I had never noticed this before. With his big smile and giggle he said, " I did that when I was 6 and look I wrote the "C" for Collier because I didn't want anyone to think it was some other Jacob."

When Paul and I first married his family would tell me stories of Paul. Paul was the baby of the family and so all his siblings had stories. One of my favorites was when Paul had just learned to write his name and he went into his brother's bedroom and on his brother's desk, he wrote his name! Paul was so proud of himself that he learned to write his name.

Our daughter was proud when she learned to write her name. She was sitting, rock in hand, on the trunk of our car when she decided to practice writing her name. In big 18 inch letters she spelled her name, correctly, on the trunk. I was so upset. I took her around Alamogordo explaining graffiti and that it was against the law to write on other people's property. Just like Paul and Jacob, Chelsea was just proud that she could write her name.

Friday, July 3, 2009

Small towns are wonderful

Janis Hagler, Pam Hunter and Me
Christian Heritage Banquet and Auction 2008

The Air Force has mainly put us in very small cities to live, and it has made bonding with friends such an easy process.

In Colorado Springs we were more spread out but with planning the mothers of young children met at parks around the city. Alamogordo was completely different. When it only takes 5 minutes to get from one side of town to the other, we could call each other and say, "Meet me at ________park" and you could get a group there in less than 30 minutes.

When someone needed something, same thing, phones would ring and help was there. You didn't have to consider traffic patterns, time of the day, etc... I miss the small town.

Janis, I will miss you when you move to Wichita!!! Even though we could barely ever drive across San Antonio to see each other, you were there when Chelsea was in the hospital, when we moved to San Antonio and when it mattered. When we were in Alamogordo together you would get bored, get the kids and come over unannounced. I miss that. Small towns are wonderful.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Spider Webs, Rivers, and Drive In Windows

Just finished up Vacation Bible School and had so many fun times with the kids. Cindi and I started to reminisce about the fun activities we did with our children.

Spider Webs: Justin and his friends were about 7 years old and I gave them each a roll of yarn and they had the den to make spider webs. They stretched the string from one chair to the next and across the room. They had fun making it, climbing through it, and then a few weeks later cutting it down. I gave them each a pair of scissors and they cut away at their strings while I came around collecting all the pieces.

Rivers: This was so much fun that the kids gave it a title. They would take the water hose and let the water run to make indentions in the yard. They then would take dump trucks to move the earth, make highways, and bodies of water for boats. This was an ongoing activity summer after summer after summer.

Drive In Windows: Our house was the meeting place for Justin and his friends between the ages of 6 and 8. Chelsea had her friend Johanna and all of them would order their food from outside. I had a sliding window in my kitchen. The kids, with help from Paul, made a menu complete with drinks, popsicles, corn dogs and chicken nuggets. The kids would pretend to honk their horn, I would slide open the window and they would place their order. I then would tell them to pull around and they would go to the sliding glass door to pick up their order.

I treasure each and every stage of their precious lives.

Justin and Chelsea's Photography

Justin and Chelsea won ribbons for their photography when they were between 8 and 10 years old. Chelsea always concentrated on the animals. Justin's photography focused more broadly. I loved the way Chelsea dressed the rabbits for graduation, marriage, and any other event her and her friend Cayla felt the rabbits needed to attend. Below you will see Starburst and Honey's wedding reception. She planned on breeding them and (of course) needed to have them married first.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Guilty conscience

Okay, I've already admitted I struggle to like the pets. We are now down to only a dog and snake. The hamster and rat have been missing for a month.

I woke up on a Saturday and saw the rats had gotten out of their cage and eaten through over $100 of computer cords, printer cords, telephone cords, etc...I grabbed one of them and tossed it out the front door.

I went to meet a couple of friends for breakfast and when I got home, I found out the other rat and the hamster were gone too. Those I didn't touch, but I'm feeling really guilty about them being missing.

Paul thought he saw something under the hot tub, but we haven't had any other signs....