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Showing posts from 2012

Dark meat and turkey carcass

Aah, here we are, once again, on the eve of  Thanksgiving, aka National Pig Out Day.  I can't think of another holiday that glories and celebrates the wonder of gluttony, except maybe Mardi Gras, but that's not really a national  holiday. But I digress.

I'm not sure which grocery store I will hit up on the way home today.  I am supposed to make a dessert for the feast I am attending.  Creamy, smooth, peanut butter pie?  No, that's my sister's.  (More on territorial foods at family gatherings in my post-gluttony blog.)  I think I will scour the internet for a low-cal dessert that four people will eat, right before they have "just a tiny piece" of peanut butter pie, chocolate layer cake, pumpkin pie, and chocolate chess pie.  All with whipped cream on top. 

I kind of checked out on the whole cooking thing after I got divorced with the rationale that hey, I don't have to be Betty Crocker anymore.  Phew.  Load off.  For the record, I did cook quite a bit…

Motorcycles, Hondas, and convertibles

Chances are, you are going to go somewhere this week.  Maybe you'll walk, ride a bike, or drive a car to your destination.  I have a Honda Accord that I am pretty much in a committed relationship with -- it's dependable and looks good.  But if someone drove up in a cool convertible or a big motorcycle, I would pass up the Honda.  Not that I don't love my little car, but how fun to feel the wind in your hair and feel like you are in a commercial for "cool."

Riding on a motorcycle or in a convertible would make the ride more fun and adventurous, kind of like you are in a action flick.  You'd still get to the same destination eventually, but the way you get there would be much more enjoyable.

In the same way, raising children, helping out with elderly parents, having a financial difficulty, waiting for Mr. or Mrs. Right, working for that next big promotion -- you could discount each of those experiences for how difficult it is, what the disadvantages are, how you …

8 Reasons to Follow Your Passion

I like cheesecake.  And I, on occasion, make cheesecake from scratch.  It's a laborious process, and I always freak out a little towards the end, wondering if I have cooled it slowly enough for the center not to crack.  But it's not my passion. 

I am a sucker for a romantic comedy.  Sign me up and stick a fork in me, because I am done.  I always cry at the end of Love Affair, which is a modern remake of An Affair to Remember.  I can practically recite every line from You've Got Mail.  Mr. Darcy (if you have to ask who?, don't worry about it) is in the back of my mind most days.  But it's not my passion.

It's taken me a long time, but I have finally figured out that I HAVE to write.  It's what I do.  Sometimes it's funny, sometimes vewwy, vewwy serious (read that in your Elmer Fudd voice) and sometimes I have no idea how something will turn out until it's done.  But it's my passion, and it's what I do. 

So over the span of my passion-follow…

I Like It

If you know anything about me at all, you probably know that I am on Facebook.  I started out being a "protective parent" to see what my then-young teen children were doing, but now my Facebook presence has evolved into me interacting with friends who are my age.  Yeah, I'll comment or like something on one of my daughter's or son's friends' pages, but just because it's cute or funny or pithy.  

I realized the other day that I "like" a LOT of things on Facebook.  To me, it's kind of an affirmation that a person has posted something worthwhile and not just letters taking up space.  Then there is the ubiquitous posting about something sad, like a death or illness.  It's always weird to "like" that, because I wonder if my friend gets the idea that I am commiserating with them in their time of need, not that I find something great about something bad.  

I like that there's NOT a "don't like" button to choose on Face…

What's Your Vote?

Some days I think I totally get the small-town charm thing. I voted recently, and my voting place is at a church near my house. You would have to know it was there to find it, even though it's been there probably 40 years.
What I like about it is that it is the epitome of a "sleepy little place." We don't have picketers on voting days, nor does anyone seek us out for exit polls. You come, you go, and in between , you see that the people in our voting district are pretty much the same, that is, middle ageish regular people that probably have a dog or a cat and kids and cook out on holidays. There's a few young 20's thrown in here and there for a little spice. And I like that.
Conversely, my aunt and uncle live on about 20 acres in Dasher, GA, surrounded by a 100-acre swamp. It is super quiet and a nice place to get away for a night or two. You can hear yourself think.  Really.  Like the actual neurons firing.  And you may not see anyone on the road when you driv…

How to keep white tennis shoes white

Aaahhh, summertime-- there’s nothing like the cool of an ocean breeze, the gentle sway of palm trees, and the slight fragrance of sunscreen.  Life is idyllic, before it comes to a crashing halt, say, oh, about August 15th, when those who have not completed their summer reading go into crazy reading mode to get it finished.  But somewhere in that frenetic reading time, most find the opportunity to go buy some new clothes and especially new shoes.  White new shoes. Not just white.  It’s almost a fluorescent white, kind of whiter-than-white, and the wearer is put on a shoe wear -Defcon 1 to keep those pristine white shoes as white as they were the day they came out of the box.  Oh, the care!  The new shoe wearer avoids puddles, dirt, and threatens bodily harm to friends who would like to “break in” a new pair of shoes by stepping on them, scuffing them, etc.  These new shoes kind of remind me of marriage and the movie “Magic Mike.” A marriage relationship is a rewarding one, but has to …

Content

So what?

This is the question I ask myself as I prepare to teach and speak to a room full of 7th and 8th grade girls every Sunday morning.  Another question is, "Why should I care?"  or more importantly, "Why should middle school girls care about what I have to say?"  I tend to be a little (or a lot) ADD, so as I prepare to teach, I want everything to be interesting and compelling and something to care about.

I follow a blog written by a guy I think is pretty astute, Jon Acuff.  If you are not reading his funny blog, Stuff Christians Like, then  you are missing out.  But he also writes a leadership blog and the current series is on social platforms, or as I like to irreverently refer to the whole idea because I am kind of a rebel that will eventually conform, "social platformin'." His point today was that you have to have content, the "what" of the who-what-why-where-when model of journalism.

So  I asked myself, what is this whole blog thin…

Oh Summertime, how I love thee

I have to think that summer is my favorite time of year.  Of course, living in the Sunshine State (aka Mosquito state)  like I do, it is easy to come across a sunny day between May and October.  You're never too far from the beach in the state of Florida, and it's a likely chance that some body of water is nearby.  It's not considered abnormal to wear a beach coverup inside a fast-food, or in the case of Christian Chicken, a quick-service restaurant.  I also like that there are certain rules that we Floridians are just, well, exempt from. 
Like, white shoes are really a year-round choice, depending on what the weather is.  I mean, really -- if it is 80 degrees at Christmas, it's hard to NOT take a picture of yourself by the pool in a Santa hat. So wearing white shoes is really not a hard stretch of the ol' imagination.  Likewise, I know that it gets cold after Labor Day in some places, but everyone in Florida knows that September is just when hurricanes are starti…

I'm not a cool mom

Okay.  I like to think that I actually AM a relatively cool mom, as moms go.  I can't remember a time when I have been so completely embarrassing to my children that news of my weirdness went viral.  But I have to tell you that I am now officially inclined to bust out a tear or two or three.

I don't know where or how it started, but one day I just realized that I am a big boohooey mess.  In fact, I no longer listen to country songs that describe any kind of loss, regardless of its dog/truck/red solo cup story.  Nor do I watch "there are starving children around the world and if you were a decent human being you would help"  infomercials.  I hear about a tearful homecoming of one of our country's proud and brave military and it is ALLLLL over--break out the barrel of Kleenex. 

So what in the world  happened that made me such a weepy woman?  All I can attribute it to is a "tenderized heart." 

Not too long ago I was witness to a friend's walk of fait…

Kleenex-y dreams

This is the season that older daughter will graduate from high school. This is my first child to do so, so I am walking in uncharted territory. I have no idea what to expect, except that a lot of Kleenex will be involved.
I remember little about my own high school graduation, but I do succinctly remember a picture I took with the six girls I counted as my closest friends during those years. I liked the picture well enough to have it framed, but I haven't seen it in years.
That day, as we cut up and smiled and laughed, we could never have nor would we have wanted to know what would happen in the years to follow. We learned what bad choices were, what infertility felt like, what spousal abuse was, and how to mourn a spouse gone too soon. But we also saw that the bonds that friendship had already formed over our high school years loved beyond bad choices, cried in unison on the tough days, and fiercely hung together to protect our friends.
The other night, at my daughter's grad…

Top 14 ways to eat a Butterfinger

I'm lying.  There are actually not 14 ways to eat a Butterfinger.  I mean, there may be, but I know of just a few.

My partner in crime at work, Lori, keeps a ridiculously large jar of "bite-size" chocolates near her desk.  This is right next to the leadership poster that makes seagull noises to provide a soundtrack for the eagle pictured on the poster.  (Seriously, with stuff like this, my blog writes itself..... :)) Anyhoo, as I ate a bite-size Butterfinger in two bites rather than the self-prescribed one bite, cohorts Lori AND Charlene filled me in on the correct way to eat a bite-size Butterfinger, which is apparently to let the chocolate melt off in your mouth and then to daintily use your bicuspids to shave off parts of the candy until it's gone. 

This is in direct violation of my candy manifesto, which clearly states than any candy worth having can be eaten immediately without any required preparatory action, i.e., letting the chocolate melt off.  But th…

I Was the Other Woman. Kind of.

Without sounding too Hester Prynne, I was the other woman. Kind of.
My friend Kenn (whose name has been changed to protect the innocent) has been playing his bagpipes (name of instrument changed to protect a beautiful instrument) and singing at several local live music venues. Because I am an awesome friend, I have been promising to come see him for about a year.  And had yet to go.  So when I had a free evening and I knew he was playing, I ambled my way over to this restaurant and proceeded to order some black bean flautas. Yum!
At the break between sets, he walked over to a table with two women and talked to them and then made his way over to my table .  Kenn invited me to join these other ladies, who were also there in support of him.  I am always up for making new friends, so me and my flautas picked up and moved. Kenn introduced me to his girlfriend Berry and her mom. (Note: previously, I had learned that although a nice person , Berry could become territorial and not-so-nice if…

Three Reasons To Say I Love You

You may already think you are in charge of this blog just by reading the title.You already know why.But as is the par for Flying Pants, we’re going somewhere else with this. “I love you” are possibly the three greatest words you can say.The three worst words? “There’s no Frostys.”Seriously, though, expressing the sentiment of love is a wonderful, encouraging thing.I am a big fan of saying it because you mean it, not because it’s three words that fill up dead air space.So, with that in mind, I humbly present three reasons for saying THE WORDS: 1) You have children. When children are young, telling them that you love them not only lets them know they are loved, but saying kind words in a loving tone teaches them to use soft voices and loving tones.Children’s behaviors are often “caught” more than they are “taught.”Your actions as a parent teach volumes. When children are tweens/teens, saying “I love you” can be what shores up their day when they are battling issues like self-esteem, peer pr…

Who Needs a GPS?

REally.  Seriously.  Who needs a GPS?  If you have been a place a gazillion times, do you really need a voice in a box to tell you where to go?

I didn't think so.  I was taking Young Son and Youngest Daughter to Busch Gardens for Spring Break.  We have been there countless times and have never gotten lost.  We took off south, cruised through Orlando, and set off even further south to the Land of Reasonably Priced Theme Park Food.  It wasn't until we were seeing signs for towns south of Tampa that I started to wonder if we had gone the wrong way.  (Yeah, not much gets past me.)  After Young Son determined that we were indeed further south than we needed to be, we turned on the GPS and I put in the address.  After taking a tour not only through a construction zone and school for crack dealers, we ended up on the other end of Busch Blvd., effectively placing us in the "still hopelessly lost" category.


One legal U-turn later, we were FINALLY headed towards Busch Gardens…

Sweet Smells

Ask anyone in my family about the watermelon incident of 1986.  After they stop chuckling, he or she will explain that we left a watermelon in our car in the middle of July in Daytona Beach, FL.  It was a mistake, really, because only a foolhardy individual would do such a thing.  Imagine our surprise and dismay when we came back to the car a day later to find the watermelon had exploded all over the interior of the car.  Just for fun, one day, leave a sliced watermelon in your car on a hot day.  Actually, don't, because it STINKS.  Although we cleaned the car with the vengeance of a scorned woman, on really hot days for years to come it would reek slightly of watermelon.  


Conversely, because we have a variety of citrus trees at our place, for a short time every spring I can take in a huge,deep breath and take in the scent of beautiful, delicate citrus blossoms.  I don't know what it is about this smell, but I will purposely sit outside, be still, and just enjoy breathing in. …

My Driving Problem

I live in Jacksonville, FL, the largest city in the continental United States.  It is roughly 840 square miles wide.  It just seems much bigger when you drive it.   For example, for me to drive to work each day is 22 miles.  I take a suburban route because I don't like highway traffic.  However, I have a commute nemesis that I secretly dislike.

It's Dunkin Donuts.

I don't have an actual problem with the donuts themselves, although I do think they have a funky aftertaste and I prefer Krispy Kreme a whole bunch more.  It's more the people that go there.  And not actually the people, just their entitled sense of right of way to get in and out of the Dunkin Donuts parking lot.

Whenever traffic is moving and there is no cause to stop, it befuddles and maddens me to see perfectly good cars stop perfectly good motion to let people cross traffic to get to Dunkin Donuts.  Huh??? Is the need for baked goods so overwhelming and such a universal desire that there is psychic commu…

Hi. My Name's Terri, and I'm a Notification Junkie.

When I was at Cumberland College,  the College of the Kentucky Mountains, (now known as University of the Cumberlands) I was fortunate enough to serve on the Campus Activity Board, which planned all kinds of fun events for students.  (Shout out to Kime and Jeff Harris and Charlie and Kim Higgins, who were also on the board as freewheelin' single folks and eventually married.... aww) But, as usual, I digress.  One year we planned a series of games for Spring Fling and one of the activities was the twirly whirl, which, for you uneducated folks, is taking a baseball bat, standing it up straight, putting your nose on the end, and running around the bat like a crazy person at least ten times.  I'm not sure how it messes with your equilibrium, but try it and then try to walk normally.  Im-possible.  Really.  Try it.  It's kind of fun.  Or at least have your kids do it and laugh at them.  (evil mommy moment)

I love facebook and it is a great way to keep in touch with people.  I r…

The List

I feel as if I am a reasonably intelligent person, and I read on a number of topics that I am not actually super concerned about just because I want to be well-versed on a number of subjects,but mostly so I can remain family Jeopardy champion. A little Car and Driver magazine here, a little ESPN web page there. I'll even gladly admit to my lack of skill in the accounting world. But there's one thing I will broadcast from the tallest cell tower - Man Things I Don't Understand.

I am happy for the differences that exist between men and women . I love that women are soft and pretty and smell good. It's a great way to be. But there is an inherent difference between the two sexes that CANNOT be reconciled! Knowing the stats of a baseball player for his entire career? Umm, okay. Grunting monosyllabic responses to questions phrased as a question? Hmm. Having the ability to actually be thinking about nothing? That defies Girl World at a cellular level! Spitting for distance? Ic…

Walking with Friends

Honestly, this is something I should do at lunch every day.  I "accidentally" forgot my shoes last week, and I sincerely forgot my shoes this morning.  But this is not what this post is about.

In the teaching-high-school-English portion of my life, I was one of several chaperones for a trip to a national park in our city.  It was a very nature-y setting and the students loved just being able to run and roam.  Another teacher and I decided to take a walk down one particular trail, just because it looked like "fun."  In retrospect, it was not the kind of fun that actually FEELS like fun.  It's the kind of fun that you hope will be fun because it resembles an opportunity that could possibly be fun if the planets aligned properly and you were wearing the right kind of shoes.  So off we went down this trail that seemed to be fairly worn and had some signage to direct fun-seekers.

To make a long story a little shorter, it started out great.  However, when the trail n…

Friday Fun

I have decided that I am occasionally going to dig out a "blog" from my journals every now and then, and today seems like a good day to start.  I do have to mention that the idea for this came from my good friend and partner in crime, Jamie Vaughn. 

The Way of the Mother
Mothering is the proudest profession.  And the oldest, too, despite what some may say.  I have some friends who are having babies, and they are so wide-eyed and eager and well, "fresh."  I guess that's why it's "refreshing"  in a way to see them and all their young mother friends talk as they hover over their strollers.

However, at this stage of the mothering game that I (and many of my friends) are in, having teenagers and older, there are very few things that are "fresh."  I have been excited over report cards approximately 116 times, we have sung "Happy Birthday" at least 47 times, and have put out cookies and milk for Santa about 13 times, when you conside…

Givin' Up

Giving up has such a negative connotation.  I'm giving up, throwing in the towel, that's all she wrote, the fat lady has sung.  I hate giving up.  I am thankful that I have an indomitable spirit of hope.  No matter how bad things are, I firmly believe that they are going to get better -- for other people.  I was ready to throw in the towel the other day with this whole blog thing.  But let me start with the beginning of the story, rather than starting in the middle like most of us ADD adults do.

I follow a lovely writer named Mary de Muth that is a published writer with a great web site and this incredible ministry.  I saw that another esteemed person that I follow, Micheal Hyatt, had asked the Tweetdom for names of people with great social platforms.  Mary responded with a few names, and because I like to see what other people are doing with their blogs, I clickety-clicked my way on over to one.  And it was this whole website with blog, speaking calendar, store, resources pag…

A Case of Mistaken Identity

It's amazing what you can learn from someone's email.  In fact, I am a little envious of another Terri Brown that I can only assume has a similar email to mine, terri_brown@hotmail.com.  I have been receiving emails meant for her for years now.  From these misdirected emails, I know that she regularly visits the dentist, drives a Mini Cooper, and is a medical coder by profession. She also lives in sunny Van Nuys, California, which in my mind kind of makes her a little cooler than me, since I can only reason that tan, skinny, beautiful, Mini Cooper-driving women with beautiful teeth live in Van Nuys, CA. 

So now what if someone decided what kind of person I was based on my emails?  Or my facebook posts?  Or my tweets?  Would they decide I was a person that loves God and really does try to follow Him, regardless of my weaknesses and shortcomings?  Or would the shallow, selfish part of me that I try to fight come out and show its ugliness? 

I heard a song this morning that has i…

MEdia Choices

One of my favorite things to do is go to camp.  It's right up there with going to the beach for a week.  I really, really love it.  Now, you may think that I go for the proliferation of bugs that invade my life for 5 days, but that's only a side benefit.  The DEET-scented "body spray" is also a big plus.  (Or, in the case of Norman Park, GA, the Badger Balm.  Nothin' like it.)


I love being with the girls that I normally minister to on Wednesdays and Sundays.  We get to spend a whole week together and I get to be a part of their lives for that short period of time.  This last summer I talked to these beautiful girls about media choices and different media in their lives.  From that, I developed a list of questions to gauge their media choices and help them learn to make choices that honor God and their parents.  I run quickly away from legalism, because I want these girls to think and learn and apply God's principles for life on their own.  Students that go to…

Putting Things Off

If there were a prize or a competition for putting things off, I am fairly certain that I would be the winner, or at least in the top 5.  If there were a Procrastination Pageant, I can imagine that the top 5 contestants (if they made it on time) would be subject to questions from the judges (who would inevitably be non-procrastinators) such as:  "A turtle is, by reputation, one of the slowest animals in nature.  How do you think a turtle procrastinates and becomes even slower?"  But I digress. 

This post is really about the opposite of procrastination, which I think is planning.  I have seen, on a few occasions, how planning ahead can make a day go by oh-so-much better and more smoothly.  I decided that I would write down a list of things I would like to finish this year, and thus far this list has pretty much sat on my desk and I look at it on a fairly daily basis.  But looking at a list doesn't make things happen.  A list is an inanimate object that exists to record w…