Sunday, October 26, 2008

Our Trip to Florida -- posted by John

Here we are at the stadium:

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Here are the alligators and turtles we saw at Lake Alice:

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Here is the map I got at Corky Bell's so you can see where we went:

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On Tuesday I went on one of my dad's business trips to Florida with my dad and Sarah Grace and James.

Our first stop was in Charleston, SC to eat lunch with a client of Dad's at Sunfire Grill. I ordered shrimp and fries because the shrimp and grits were too spicy for me. Shrimp and grits are a specialty here. I had a taste of Sarah's and then I had four large glasses of ice tea before we left. They teased me once we got on the road because I had to keep asking Dad to stop every five minutes, or so it seemed.

Our next stop was at Cracker Barrel in Georgia for supper. Guess what the pretty waitress kept filling my glass with? I couldn't tell her no because I fell in love with her.

I slept through most of Georgia and we got to the Courtyard Marriott at 11PM. We unpacked, brushed our teeth and went right to bed. But first the hotel gave me two toothbrushes and a tiny tube of toothpaste because I left mine at home. I left the can of wrinkle remover, too. And a pair of pants Mom bought me for the trip in the dryer. Every time it was discovered that I left something they would all look down on me and say, "JOOOHHHNNN!" I am a forgetting buffoon.

The next day Dad went about his business and did not tell us he was taking us to.... GAINESVILLE! Gainesville is the home of the University of Florida and our beloved Florida Gators football team. Dad lived in married student housing when he was a little boy while his father was getting his MBA and Ph.D. It was a happy time for my father so we are all Gator fans, too.

While we were there we saw Tim Tebow and Percy Harvin and Urban Meyer practicing. Tim Tebow was a homeschooler like we are and he won the Heisman last year. We are very proud of him.

We ate supper at The Swamp which is a restaurant across the street from the stadium.

We also saw soldiers marching around the stadium with bayonets.

When we were in Jacksonville we saw the Jaguar stadium.

The day we left we ate at a restaurant that serves alligator and it was great. It was a little chewier than the alligator Sarah Grace made but it was still good. They served large portions and we kept eating and eating but the pile would not go down! Next time I will try frog legs.

I noticed on the trip that the bacon was chewy, not crispy like Mom's. I like crispy better.

I got a muffin and fried potatoes and peppers and strawberries at the breakfast buffet. It was really good.

I almost forgot to tell you about Puppy. The Friday before this past Friday, Puppy almost died. Puppy is an affectionate sheep that always comes to us for lovin'. She is like a puppy and we love her so.

When Spence went out to feed Uncle Bob, he found Puppy lying on the ground bloated with her legs kicking. He and Will gave her vegetable oil and massaged her stomachs but Will thought she was a goner. He didn't think she would live 30 minutes. They called Mom and Sarah Grace and James in Lexington and they came home, stood her up, and massaged her and prayed to God to save her. Mom was crying so hard because she loves that girl to bits. And the Lord did save her and we are so thankful.

If a sheep goes down and bloats, it will die if you don't catch it fast, and even then it might still die. She is now in a trailer in the carport while her nerves in her shoulder heal. Dad gave her anti-inflammatory shots in her muscles. She's going to stay up near us while she heals for another week.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Riesling Blue -- posted by John

Riesling blue (that's what I call it) is my favorite color. It is the color of the smooth, slender Riesling wine bottle that Mom sometimes buys at Sam's. I wish I could get colored pencils that could color in that color and I wish I could buy clothing in that color but I've only seen it come in glass. It might be that the glass is what makes the color so beautiful. So, I think we should all wear glass shirts and color with glass pencils. As Monk would say, "Lol out loud."

We took sheep to auction on Saturday. As we were taking the sheep to the trailer, Uncle Bob was spitting on us like crazy. He does that if he gets really troubled and thinks we are harming the sheep. One time we were shearing the sheep and he thought we were hurting one because she was squirming around and he came up to me, collected his spit in his mouth, and then blew it in my face. I said, "Bobby, what did you want to do that for?" And then he blew his nose on me! It's like a shotgun spray that spreads out like a shower. So, we got showered with each sheep we loaded up in the trailer on Saturday.

We went to my Ma's house yesterday for supper and Bible study and guess what I saw? In a beautiful glass dome my Ma has a treasured gold pocket watch that belonged to one of our ancestors. It hangs from a hook in the top of the dome. I have always loved looking at that watch. Last night when I went over to look at that watch, I noticed that on the stand that holds up the dome my Ma put the beautiful emerald ring I made her. I told you she loved it! She is keeping it in the place of honor with the golden watch. When I saw it there under the glass dome, my heart burst with pride!

A funny thing happened at supper. My sister makes very delicious healthy food and she makes our salad dressing from scratch. Our favorite is her honey mustard dressing made with yogurt. Mom even told Ma to give it a taste because it is so creamy good. Mom tasted it at the same time and guess what? Sarah Grace had left out the honey! What's really funny is that we boys had it on our salad and didn't even notice! I remember thinking it wasn't as thick as usual and it tasted more mustardy than usual. Thankfully Sarah wasn't too embarrassed and it didn't make her feel bad. She thought it was funny and not surprising because it had been a busy day and Richard woke her up in the middle of the night and she never fell back asleep. Even great cooks can forget things!

I've got to go pack now because I'm going on Dad's business trip to Florida with Sarah Grace and James. We're going to a restaurant that serves alligator and snake and frog legs. I can't wait!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Our Septic Tank -- posted by John

A while ago I was doing schoolwork on my parents bed while my father was making business calls at his desk. Mom was resting while Sarah Grace was tickling her head on the sofa. I typed out my entire post on my computer and the entire thing got deleted. Mom kept trying to find it no matter how hard I tried to convince her it was lost. I was right.

Our septic tank got filled up today so Dad called the septic tank people to come pump it out. We watched a history lecture from The Teaching Company while they pumped it. They had to remove the steps that go from the deck to the pond and then they had to dig down to the lid. Our steps are attached by big bolts, so they are easily removed.

Mom says septic tank people do noble work and I have to agree with her. Septic tank work is something that has to be done by someone, and we should be thankful for him. They have to deal with sewage by pumping it out everyday and then they have to go dump it at the waste water plant. It is not a pleasant job.

I think it would be the perfect job for my dad, if he ever needed to get another one, since some bankers are losing their jobs, and he is a banker. We are in a financial crisis and that is bad because we have eight children and some debt that needs to be paid. It would be perfect for him because while he was using the auger to make sure it wasn't a clog, he couldn't smell it! Some smells my dad can't smell. That's why he is just the one to change diapers, too.

Yesterday and the day before was Richard and my Ma's birthday. I wrapped all the packages and I did a fine job of it. George helped me by handing me the tape while I held the paper nice and tight. He handed me the scissors too.

For my grandmother's present, I made her a beautiful ring and she LOVED it! I bet she is wearing it right now on her middle finger. I found a circular piece of metal that may be a key ring. I took a strip of red duct tape and rolled it around backward on the metal ring. Then I took a nice plastic emerald I found in the craft tower and I stuck it on the tape. I put it in a ring box and wrapped it up and then I put it in a gift bag. Richard gave her a heart he cut out and some red string with it. George boiled her four eggs from our chickens because she loves boiled eggs.

We had a party at Ma's house last night and we played pool upstairs over her garage. Each one of us playing won at least once.

Mrs. Dee was there, too, and she ate with us and had cake and then we had Bible time all together.

Mrs. Dee had to leave first because she stays at night with a lady that is a new widow who can't see well and shouldn't stay alone. Mrs. Dee is a widow too.

One of my mom's favorite things in all her life is when I write my posts. She told me that today when she was searching my computer for my lost entry. I just love that. It made me feel so loved when she said it. She also loves it when I laugh and talk at the same time. She says my eyes twinkle. She told me that today too.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My Wife Account -- posted by John

Sunday, Dad and Mom and Sarah Grace and I went to Ma's house to study the Bible. I learned a lot of things like David (Dah-Veed) means love, Judas fell headlong and his guts spilled out, on the cross Jesus gave over the care of his mother to his disciple, John, not his own half brothers.

That was probably because his brothers weren't his followers yet. Maybe his mother wasn't either because one time when his brothers and mother should have been sitting at his feet being taught by him, they were on the outside instead of the inside.

Matthew 12:46-50
46While he yet talked to the people, behold, his mother and his brethren stood without, desiring to speak with him.
47Then one said unto him, Behold, thy mother and thy brethren stand without, desiring to speak with thee.
48But he answered and said unto him that told him, Who is my mother? and who are my brethren?
49And he stretched forth his hand toward his disciples, and said, Behold my mother and my brethren!
50For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother.

I don't know where his sisters were when all this was going on. Later on in Acts his brothers were with the believers and so was his mother so I guess they all eventually got born again. At first they thought he was going to sit on the throne right then and there but then they realized that if he kept his kind of preaching up, he'd get himself killed. They did not understand that was God's plan all along.

We also learned about how some people can get a devil. Sometimes unloved children get a grudge about being unloved and they can eventually become evil. My mother was very troubled about a little boy in the paper who broke into a zoo and went about killing animals with a rock and feeding live animals to a crocodile. They said he had a blank face all the while he was doing it. She wondered if that little boy had been abused or hated at some time.

Osama bin Laden is not the son of his father's most loved wife. He could have a great big grudge, you know. He surely has a devil.

Sometimes people just keep doing sins over and over and over again until they give themselves over to it.

A Ouija board is something no holy person would have. Witchcraft and all that kind of stuff is devilish, so we don't do any of that. We don't even do Halloween. We don't miss it. Some of us don't even know what it is.

Mrs. Browder gave me some clippings of a certain newspaper writer because she thought I would enjoy his writing. I haven't read them all but it made me think that maybe I should consider being a writer. I wouldn't want to be a newspaper writer but maybe a book writer.

I know some people come to read my journal who are people I don't know. They must like it because they keep coming back. I don't know if any men read my journal because only women have said they read my writings. Sometimes my brothers tease me about that. Sometimes I tease my brothers like now when I tease one of them because he is reading Pride and Prejudice.

Maybe if I worked hard I could sell my writings like James might one day sell his paintings and I could put the money in my wife account.

Mom says we boys should work hard and live at home to save money for a wife. We should have enough money for a wedding and a wedding gown and wedding jewelry and the best wine we can afford and also a pretty little first house with cook pots and flowers and lovely things. We should get a wife just as soon as we can and love her and take care of her forever.

I've been reading some Amelia Bedelia books I found around here and she is a mess. She takes things so literally. A lady told her she would like some cereal with her coffee so Amelia served her coffee with cereal in it! A man told her to stamp some envelopes and so she jumped on them. Get it? She stamped on them. The books are very funny except for how all these people reject her in a cruel way. They yell at her and send her away. In the end she turns out okay but on the way she has a tough go of it. She's innocent all along so it will hurt you to see her being treated so mean even though there is a happy ending.

Richard's birthday is tomorrow and he has invited me to bake his cake.