Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Recap of Day One

Day One of potty-ing did not go well. We had pee on my lap and poop in the closet, but nothing on the potties. We had lots of running and some spinning along with a little bit of sitting. Singing and clapping helps to keep them engaged, but too much singing and clapping leads to dancing. While dancing is fun, it is not sitting on the potty.

Bribery is not getting us very far, either. Filbert has promised them a puppy when he doesn't have to buy diapers anymore and also a frog to the first one that gets anything in the potty. They each have a chart for stickers, but so far, no stickers have been earned.

Monday, March 30, 2009

April Fools is Coming!

When I was in Junior High, I decided to pull a prank on my classmates. I got some pixie sticks from the store. I cut off the ends and refilled them with salt. Being the smarty that I am, I kept a few filled with the candy. When I'd ask a friend if they wanted one, they would be suspicious because of April Fools day. I would pull out one of the untainted ones and eat it. Of course every single one of them fell for it and gladly downed a pixie stick full of salt.

When Mr. Bean and I were dating, I took my engagement ring from a previous relationship and wore it to church on April Fools day. We definitely got some strange looks and some awkward words of congratulations from our friends. We had only been dating for about 4 months.

Aaahhhh good times. Did you do any great pranks on April Fools Day?

Sunday, March 29, 2009

The Chronicles of Narnia, Book Review

Today, we have a guest blogger giving us a review of "The Chronicles of Narnia" by C. S. Lewis. Filbert has been reading the book series to Walnut over the past couple of months and they are on the seventh book. Walnut has graciously agreed to share his thoughts on Narnia with our readers.

Aslan made Narnia. Lucy discovered Narnia by a wardrobe. Edmond met the White Witch. Peter, Susan, Lucy and Edmond turned into kings. I like it because it's magical. Aslan died and then came alive.

Thank you, Walnut, for your insights! I think that's a pretty good job from a 6 year old book reviewer.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Managing Your Day

I recently read a great post over at Simple Mom about managing a routine when you have little ones running around your house. Her tips are really great and this is a must read for parents of small kids!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Happy 100th, Grandpa!

Well, today is the big day! My great grandfather turns 100 today. String Bean and I are celebrating with 5 generations of family out in Seattle this weekend. I thought you might enjoy some excerpts from a news article about his life that was printed in the Monroe Monitor.

Before arriving in Washington, Miller, one of 10 siblings and the only boy to graduate from high school, was somewhat footloose, working as a traveling salesman in the Midwest before heading to Los Angeles for work in the airplane manufacturing business.

“I had an aunt in Los Angeles,” he said. “I lost my job, I was out of work, and I had interviewed with (plane builder) Lockheed with a rep. in Minneapolis. They didn’t call and didn’t call, so I decided to come out to Los Angeles where they were anyway.”

It worked; he got the job and the career he would pursue until retirement.

He started out working on the P-38.

After six years, though, the job ended.

“Lockheed was going to lay me off, and I had a brother with a dealership in Minnesota,” said Miller. “I moved back there and joined that firm.” Then came World War II, and Lockheed cranked up production.

Back to Los Angeles went Miller, working on the P-38, this time outfitting the planes with guns for the war effort. He also worked on the C-69, a large cargo plane. After a while, he became a teacher, which lead to his next job.

“I was teaching about the airplanes,” he said. Some people from a company called AirResearch Manufacturing came in to take a class from him. “I asked them if they had jobs in their field service department.”

He switched careers after clearing it with military, as those involved in the war effort were required to do in those days, and continued to teach about airplanes for the rest of his

He also had a large family; he and his wife Dorothy had seven children.

Upon retirement, in 1972, he moved to Startup. “I built the first house in Startup in two years,” he said. “They hadn’t had any houses built in that long.” He and Dorothy bought a manufactured home on two acres and joined the Hillcrest Baptist Church in Sultan.

After 68 years of marriage, Dorothy died in 2000. Miller moved to Merrill Gardens three years ago, at the age of 97.

He currently lives there with his second wife, Lois XXX Miller.

He will celebrate his birthday with his five surviving children at the Northshore Senior Center in Bothell. Many of his 20 grandchildren, 41 great-grandchildren and six great great-grandchildren are expected to attend.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

It's That Time

Next week, I will attempt to start potty-training Peanut and Cashew. Pray for me. It's Spring Break so there's no school to get in our way. I've got two potties and a mat to put down on the floor. We'll have to use the hallway as Potty Central, because our bathroom is not big enough. We've had some experimental excursions on the potty, but no deposits as of yet. I've got stickers and I'll print out some charts. With Walnut, we bought a special potty book and a potty friend, but they didn't really help, so we'll fore go that expense this time around. Walnut also got tons of candy, but that's not an option this time. I don't really think this will be a fun time, but who knows, maybe they'll surprise me.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Traveling with a Toddler

Tomorrow, String Bean and I are traveling to Seattle. It is about a 5 hour flight from here. The airport it about an hour away, and we have to get there two hours early. We are renting a car and the hotel is 30 miles from the airport in Seattle. So...we are looking at an 8 or 9 hour journey when it is all said and done.

Luckily, my parents (Nana and Pop to String Bean) are meeting us at the airport. They planned their layover to be here so they could take the flight to Seattle with us. I am spending all day today getting laundry done, carseat vacuumed, random kid things packed, and wondering what is missing from my list.

On this trip, I am taking a small plastic bucket with a lid and putting all String Bean's little toys in it so she has something to play with on the airplane and at the hotel on the other end. Since "in" and "out" are her favorites right now, this bucket should do the trick!

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Slip of the Tongue

We've all made them. We've all said things we've had to apologize for. I'm fortunate that I've never made one on a late night television show. I'd like to extend some grace for President Obama regarding his "Special Olympics", but I'm having a hard time with it. It's personal for me. That's my son that is being mocked. I've heard the apology, but the sting is still there. It's all over our society, the disabled are still a minority that it's okay to mock. How many times have you heard a joke about riding the short bus? The short bus is a reality for me. Every day I walk down my driveway and get Peanut off of a short bus. He absolutely loves riding the bus. He gets the most precious, excited look on his face when you ask him about the bus. He even made up his own sign for the bus, he waves his little hand in the air in an arc. But then I think about a few years from now when he hears his first "short bus" joke and the thing that brings him such joy now, will make him the butt of a joke.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Plan B

It saddens me that a judge has ruled that 17 year olds now have access to "plan b." (I don't care what they say ["It is not an abortion pill"], it still teaches our kids they can do what they want without consequence.)

I'm frustrated that the drug even exists. Luckily, there is a 30 day waiting period before it goes into effect and still a chance it could be turned over.

What are your thoughts about this new controversial decision?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

A Torrid Affair

I'm having a torrid love affair...with tea. I drank it all the time in high school, but I've just recently re-discovered it due in part to having a couple colds back-to-back.

I've always been a loyal fan of iced tea, but hot tea has recaptured my interest. There's nothing like a hot cup of Earl Grey to start and end the day right!


Friday, March 20, 2009

Battered and Bruised

I just pulled an apple out of the refrigerator. I proceeded to almost drop it and did the whole juggling a single object thing. I failed miserably and my apple smacked down on the kitchen tile with that sick sound that only an apple hitting the floor makes. Images of bruised apple filled my mind as I watched it roll from one end of the kitchen to the other, out into the dining room, under the high chair, past the hutch, and stop just short of hitting our chinchilla's cage.

After rinsing it off, I took a few bites. Of course, String Bean wanted some. After she attempted to chew the skin, she spit it all out at me and left me alone with my battered and bruised fruit.

I was only able to choke down half of it. Something about the overly juicy, brown, bruised parts grossed me out.

Thursday, March 19, 2009

AIG Bonuses

I am as frustrated as much of the rest of America about the AIG Bonuses using our taxpayer money. Have you heard on the news that the execs who received the bonuses are getting death threats?

I can't help but wonder how I would feel if I were one of the execs who got a bonus. In our rage, we forget that they are real people with real problems. Perhaps for some of them, the bonus they got was an answer to prayer to pay off a huge debt. Perhaps for some of them, the bonus was the reason they were able to avoid foreclosure.

I'm sure there are greedy guys out there who were thrilled to just have more money to line their greedy pockets. I still can't help but wonder.

On the other hand, aren't these the same execs who drove AIG into the ground? Do they really need or deserve bonuses that will ensure that they stay with AIG through the rough times? Should they even stay?

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Compliment Guys

Hope this gives you a good laugh (and maybe an idea for something to do this weekend)!

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Update on the Card

Mr. Bean and I went to the grocery store to look for birthday cards for the various family members with March birthdays. There are 4. We were successful in all of them, except the 100th birthday card for my great-grandfather.

As we looked at the shelf, we found "age" cards starting at 60 and going up in 5 year increments all the way to 95 and then it stopped. Why?! So, we were considering getting a 95 card and a 5 card until our friend Patrick suggested we just get 100 1-year-old birthday cards.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Carless and Computerless

Oh me, oh my, whatever shall I do! Strange lights are flashing on the dashboard of my van, so to the shop it goes as soon as Filbert gets home. I hope it doesn't rain tomorrow, because Cashew and I will be walking to pick Walnut up from school. Our aging computer is going in for a tune-up tonight, as well. So, I'll be stuck in the house with no entertainment. Maybe I'll actually do some housework. Probably not.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Blast from the Past

My old college roommate is here visiting this weekend. We had several other college friends come in for a cook-out and to reminisce before Beth leaves for the mission field with her husband, Justin. They expect to leave for Croatia in June-ish.

We enjoyed sharing old college stories, "what are they up to now" moments, and comparing notes on our own lives for the past 9 years. What was interesting is how our lives intersected in college and how they continue to intersect in various ways now even though we do not see one another regularly.

Since we are all friends with one another on Facebook, we've managed to keep up here and there, but Facebook is no excuse for a real face-to-face conversation, although it is better than no communication at all!

Saturday, March 14, 2009

100 Years Old

My great grandfather is turning 100 on March 27th. String Bean and I are going out to Seattle to celebrate. I am looking forward to getting a 5 generation photo while we are there! That's pretty fun because when I was about String Bean's age, I was the 5th generation in a 5 generation photo with another grandfather of ours at his 100th birthday party.

I'd like to get something small for him for his big day. Any ideas? He's 100, so I don't think he needs anything. Apart from ordering a card online, I'm having a hard time finding a happy 100th card.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Eucalyptus Drive

I heard this a couple of days ago and just can't get it out of my mind. There isn't a video, it is just audio.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

No Line on the Horizon

A guest post from my husband, Mr. Bean on U2's new album, No Line on the Horizon. If you are considering purchasing the album or if you have already listened to it, you probably will find this interesting. Enjoy!

A little background on my life with U2. I grew up in Japan (5th grade through my senior year of high school), and when I was in 7th grade, my dad went back to the U.S. for some reason or another, walked into a record store, asking “What’s new that I can bring back to my kids in Japan?” and the sales clerk told him to pick up a cassette copy of The Joshua Tree. That was pretty much the first real rock record I ever owned. Not a bad start for exposure to the wide world of rock ‘n’ roll. Rattle and Hum (both the cassette and the movie on VHS—“It’s a musical journey”) followed shortly thereafter, and my fandom was confirmed. Through high school came the confusing shift to Achtung Baby and Zooropa, and I’ll admit I didn’t really get it. But, when Pop came out while I was in college, the 90’s trilogy (AB, Z, and Pop) with all its brilliant, irony-filled soul-searching hit home, and to this day, those have continued to be three of my favorite U2 records.

Next was the return to “classic” U2 with All That You Can’t Leave Behind, that had some pretty fantastic moments (“Beautiful Day”, “Walk On”, “When I Look at the World”, “Grace”), and some poor ones (“Stuck in a Moment You Can’t Get Out Of” and “In a Little While”, which completely ripped off the opening lick of Sixpence None the Richer’s “I Can’t Catch You” from their self-titled record, which is a better song in every way. But I digress…). Overall, though, the record worked. How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb was probably the band’s weakest effort in some years (gosh, maybe going all the way back to October?, although most critics would probably argue for Pop, which again, I really liked). I mean, after “Vertigo”, most of How to Dismantle is filler.

So, for me, it was time for U2 to try something else. All early reports were that the band was indeed looking for new sounds, doing a round of tracking in exotic Morocco for inspiration. On release day, my coworkers and I dutifully headed to Best Buy to pick up our CD copies. (Sorry folks, as an audio geek, it’s still hard for me to not buy the full audio quality CD instead of doing the iTunes thing, especially for a record I care about. Yeah, I know. iTunes Plus, 256 kbps, yada, yada, yada. But what if they come out with a better encoding codec in the future? I’m stuck with 256 kbps AAC files! Tragic.)

I’ve listened through the record for a week now, and certainly haven’t mined everything that No Line on the Horizon has to offer. So, if you have thoughts to add to the discussion, please post them below.

Early reviews have ranged from “best record since Achtung Baby” (Rolling Stone) to “they’re trying too hard” (Time). Lots of people are saying the album is a grower. That either means 1) it actually does take a few listens to “get” what the band is up to, or 2) people are afraid to say it’s bad, but it is. So far, I’d have to say the former is more true for me than the latter. But it did take a number of listens. Here’s my track-by-track analysis:

“No Line on the Horizon” – I gotta say, this just isn’t that great of a piece of music. The chorus fails to soar, the chord changes are uninteresting, and the arrangement is mediocre at best. If there’s one thing U2 has done well over its career, it’s open an album well. Think of all the great tunes: “Where the Streets Have No Name”, “Vertigo”, “Zoo Station”, “Beautiful Day”, even Bono saying, “This song Charles Manson stole from the Beatles; we’re stealin’ it back.” Needless to say, this is not a good sign.

“Magnificent” – Ahh, now here’s some decent arranging, and proof that no matter how much U2 changes their sound, when we hear Edge’s classic delayed guitar sound, we know we’re listing to U2. And that’s a good thing. Bono hands us a song of praise (either directed to his wife or God, I would guess, but using Biblical terms like “joyful noise” and “justified” makes me lean toward the latter. I’m open to debate, here.) My one problem with the form is that the guitar solo seems misplaced. It lacks a lot of the great energy that the chorus provides, and feels like it should appear earlier in the tune as a result.

“Moment of Surrender”/”Unknown Caller”: It really surprises me that I’ve yet to read a review of No Line on the Horizon in which the reviewer realizes these two tracks go together. A cursory reading of the wikipedia article on the album tells us that Bono decided to write a number of songs from the point of view of various characters (as opposed to his own point of view), and that these two songs are written from the viewpoint of the same character, a junkie. (For what it’s worth, Bono has successfully used this technique in the past: “Babyface”, “For the First Time”, “Until the End of the World”, not to mention his stage personas of the Fly or MacPhisto.)

I’m impressed by the way “Moment of Surrender” manages to be a long song and a slow, long song at that, but somehow remains musically interesting throughout. In this track, our junkie has an existential crisis amidst an urban landscape. Bono nicely captures the ability for a person to have such an introspective experience of crisis despite being surrounded by others: “I did not notice the passers-by/And they did not notice me.”

What took me a while to recognize was how well “Unknown Caller” provides the second half of salvific arc to this character’s story. I mean, it’s kind of weird piece of music. You get a sense of dawning, a new day, from the opening tones, and suddenly the out-of-place “Sunshine, sunshine” in the lyrics starts to make sense. Our junkie gets a mysterious call on his cell phone (from the “Unknown Caller”—God, perhaps?), and this plot point explains the weird, semi-shouted, techno-positivism of the chorus that just doesn’t work musically without recognizing the scenario at hand. Heck, there’s even a churchy organ and brass instrumental section coupled with Edge’s guitar solo near the end to consummate this struggler’s transformation. (Thanks to my wife, Mandie, for helping to point this out.) So what used to be a really strange tracks 3-4 on a record really works, and works stunningly well.

“I’ll Go Crazy if I Don’t Go Crazy Tonight” – Edge, what were you thinking? Thank goodness the most stock pop lick EVER (“mi-re-fa-mi”, for you music geeks) only lasts four measures, and moves into a only mildly interesting ditty, both musically and lyrically. But at least it makes a nice lead into…

“Get On Your Boots” – We all heard this song before the record came out, and I, for one, wasn’t really sure whether I liked it or not. Heard in the context of the record, I have to say it works really, really well. Thanks, boys, especially for letting the distorto-bass and drums drive the verses. I also like the continuation of Satan-as-terrorist imagery that was found on “Vertigo” on How to Dismantle an Atomic Bomb. What does Bono mean when he says, “Let me in the sound?” Beats me. Ideas, anyone?

“Stand Up Comedy” – I really think that this song is about Bono’s interaction with evangelicals over his last few years. If that’s true, then what a song this is! Bono both laughs at the church’s inaction and implores them to action. (Although not implicit in this song, he’s presumably talking in part about the AIDS crisis in Africa.) Look at these bits of lyric from that standpoint: “Stand up/This is comedy/…/Stop helping God across the road like a little old lady/Out from under your beds/C’mon ye people/Stand up for your love”, and a really great couplet “God is love/And love is evolution’s very best day.”

“FEZ-Being Born” – This was supposed to be the album opener, and dang, it totally should have been. It’s certainly better than “No Line on the Horizon”, but I also understand that it’s not as much of a rocker. But still, Eno-esque though they might be, those first 35 seconds would have made an amazing soundscape to signal U2’s newest transformation. But they wimped out. Hey, I understand you gotta sell records and all that, but c’mon guys, take a risk. Of course the problem with starting the album with this track is that there’s not enough sonic experimentation like this elsewhere on the record. Dare I say, I wish there were even more Brian Eno on this record? (Gasp!) What a great impressionistic lyric, too: “A speeding head, a speeding heart/I’m being born, a bleeding start/The engines roar, blood curling/Head first then foot/Then heart sets sail.”

“White as Snow” – This is another of the songs written from the point of view of someone not named Bono. In this case, wikipedia tells me it’s a dying soldier in Afghanistan’s final thoughts as he’s been hit by a homemade explosive device. He thinks back to his days as a (presumably Christian) God-loving youth in middle-America (“Once I knew there was a love divine”), and now finds himself dying in an opium-selling Islamic country that wants no part of him (“Only poppies laugh under the crescent moon/The road refuses strangers/The land the seeds we sow/Where might we find the lamb as white as snow[?]”). Forgiveness in this scenario is only God-given (“Who can forgive forgiveness where forgiveness is not/Only the lamb as white as snow/…/If only a heart could be white as snow.”) So, what’s the connection to all of this with the tune to “O Come, O Come Emmaunuel?” I have a hard time believing that melody wasn’t chosen on purpose.

“Breathe” – This is a great U2 tune. Maybe not in the top 5 ever, but it’s pretty high up there. It rocks, the arrangement works, and U2 just killed playing it on opening night of Letterman week (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGurpsGKPCg, and while you’re at it check out their Top Ten http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iIrPDV05SXU, which the band pulls off with just the perfect amount of smirk and awkwardness.) Bono looks at the complexity of modern life and suggests there’s a way through: “These days are better than that.”

“Cedars of Lebanon” – The last “character” song, about a war correspondent in the Middle-east. Bono beautifully gets inside this worn, battered character’s head, who’s equally conflicted and wiser for the wear: “Squeezing complicated lives into a simple headline/…/Choose your enemies carefully ‘cos they will define you.” Musically, the sparse textures work wonderfully, and we even get a little more Brian Eno soundscaping (yea!). A good song, and a solid album-closer.

In summary, yes, there’s a few clunkers on No Line on the Horizon, but the good far outweighs the bad here, with U2 putting forth another solid effort. It’ll be interesting to see if the record of B-sides (think Amnesiac, Radiohead’s follow up to Kid A) tentatively titled Songs of Ascent will ever see the light of day, which wikipedia tells me will be a “more meditative album on the theme of pilgrimage”. Sounds interesting to me!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Adoption Day!

Congratulations to my friend Emily who adopts her adorable little girl officially tomorrow. She's had her since she was just a baby and is thrilled to add this baby to her family (here are photos to the adoption of the other kids on Emily's old blog). Emily and her husband, Keith, have already adopted a pair of siblings. Be sure to check Emily's blog for photos which are sure to come!

Congratulations Emily, Keith, and kids!

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

If Danger is Afoot...

...you can be sure that Cashew thought of it, Walnut figured out how it could be accomplished and Peanut volunteered to go first. They're very cute, but they do make me tired sometimes.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Daylight Savings Strikes Again

We managed to remember to change our clocks although some of our friends were a bit forgetful...

I'm enjoying the Daylight Savings effect on String Bean. Sleeping in until 8 am today? Hallelujah!

Does this mean in the Fall she'll be waking up much earlier?

Sunday, March 8, 2009

3 years ago today

We got Peanut's diagnosis of Prader-Willi Syndrome. We were devastated, but yet the grace of God was so over-whelming at the same time. I'd like to share a journal entry I wrote the day after we heard the diagnosis.

March 9, 2006
Today I am thankful. I'm thankful that Phillip was premature, because now he is getting therapy to strengthen his muscles and to help him to suck six weeks before he was even supposed to be born. I'm thankful he was in the NICU instead of the newborn nursery because the doctors and nurses had the experience to know there was something wrong with him besides being premature. I'm thankful that the doctors' trusted their instincts and ordered the tests even though they though they thought they would be negative. I'm thankful that Phillip was diagnosed at 2 1/2 weeks because now we have so much more time to prepare for the struggles ahead of us. I am thankful for the incredible support we have already received from our church. I am thankful for the enormous grace that God has given me today, because I have no idea how I am able to be thankful. Our God is so mighty and powerful, and yet he knows my name. He knows Phillip's name and has known him and loved him from the foundation of the earth. It is an honor to be able to worship such a marvelous God.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Compliments from Strangers

String Bean and I pulled up to the little strip mall where our local Starbucks is located. In the window of the Verizon store a man caught my eye, looked at my little one and a large smile came across his face. After ordering my drink, I saw him walk into Starbucks and order his.

Since String Bean always has a cookie in each hand, she was full of a mixture of cookie crumbs and drool which had made a nice paste on her hands. Quite disgusting looking. I took her over to wipe her hands off and the man came over to the napkin stand and said, "She sure is cute, but I bet you hear that all the time." So, in the spilt second before I responded with "Thanks, we never get tired of hearing it!" I wondered if we should crown him Man-of-the-Year or give him a dunce cap and stand him in the corner and dub him Master of the Obvious.

Man-of-the-Year: If I had been a single mom, that line would have been the perfect pick up line. Not only was he complimenting my child (and as an extension-me), but also assumed that I'd been hearing this sort of compliment her whole life. A stroke of genius.

Master of the Obvious: Anyone who know me and String Bean knows full well how cute she is. His statement merely stated the obvious. Any fool should know that we've been getting compliments on her adorable-ness from strangers for months (16 to be exact). Even her ultrasound got compliments from strangers like, "Wow, not only is it obvious this child is gifted, it is also obvious that she is a shoe-in for Miss America. No other contestants need apply."

I'm torn. Don't misunderstand, I'll take the compliment. Thank you very much, Mr. Stranger. What do you think? Man-of-the-Year or Master of the Obvious?

Friday, March 6, 2009

I'm Feeling Judgmental

I guess it started last week when I saw an adoption listing for a two and a half year old little girl with Prader-Willi Syndrome. She has spent her whole life in the hospital because she has no one to take care of her. Then I was watching Oprah, and this woman was bragging about giving up her country-club lifestyle by divorcing her husband and moving her kids to a shack in the woods. Isn't there a middle ground there somewhere? I know I shouldn't judge, but sometimes it's really hard not to, but I have to remember, I am by no means exempt from judgment. So, I'm still working on that plank in my eye. Maybe, if I can get it out, I'll be able to see more clearly why people make the choices that they make.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009


Our church passed new bylaws which change our leadership structure. I am on the committee that is helping make the leadership transition to the new structure. I am also one of the candidates for the new "nomination committee" which helps place the leaders of the church.

Tonight was my interview. It was much like a typical job interview, but I also got to share how the Lord is working (and has worked) in my life. I've been serving with the group that interviewed me for a couple of years now. As I was being interviewed, and as one of the other members of this committee were being interviewed, it was interesting to learn about the trials each of us had been through and to rejoice and give God glory for his working in our lives.

Next week, we are interviewing 4 other candidates for this new committee. I am looking forward to hearing about the spiritual journeys of these other interviewees that I have known and worked alongside for several years now!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Wheel of Fortune

I heard on the news today that kids under the age of 2 should not watch images on a screen (TV, computer). String Bean LOVES Wheel of Fortune. How can I say no to a little girl who claps and squeals every time the audience claps (which is a lot), enjoys watching the wheel go around, Vanna "flip" the letters and Pat's corny jokes?

Monday, March 2, 2009

Our Movie Star

String Bean has been asked to star in a movie. Some students who work with Mr. Bean are working on their class film. Every class from seniors to freshmen write a short film, cast it, produce it, and screen it at the college. It is a big deal. The students rent limos for the stars and have them parade on the red carpet on opening night.

String Bean has been asked to play the part of a young child whose dad is telling her a bedtime story which is a flashback on his younger days. The students need a set and will be using String Bean's own bedroom. We have agreed to let the students rearrange furniture as long as they return things where they found it!

The original plot called for a crying baby. After tense negotiations, Mr. Bean got the producers to agree to a rewrite. String Bean will be able to use her own creative expression and act in the scene as she feels led based on the chemistry she has with her actor-dad. If that includes crying, so be it. However, if she's not feeling it, that's OK, too.

Salary negotiations and the technical riders are still in the works. String Bean has expressed interest in bananas, goldfish, corn chex and cookies in her dressing room. As far as salary goes, she has indicated she'd be happy if she were compensated by just getting to stay up late. Her agent (aka Mr. Bean) is working on her behalf to get the sweetest deal he can. Unfortunately, this is a low-budget film.

We start shooting in about two weeks.

Sunday, March 1, 2009


I've been a bit distracted this weekend from my regular routine. Mr. Bean, who has been working 6 days a week for months and months, had the entire weekend off (plus a half day on Friday)! I haven't known what to do with myself.

Thursday night, a friend called asking if she could come play with String Bean so Mr. Bean and I could have a date. Typically, I would have responded, "Thanks, but Mr. Bean has to work on Friday night." It was nice to take her up on the offer.

Saturday, we slept in. After doing some keyboard shopping for our church, we went out to dinner with friends.

Today, we went to church, did 6 loads of laundry (including folding and putting away), took naps, and went grocery shopping.

It has been a full weekend. Although we crossed several items off our to-do list, I feel rested and ready for a new week!