Friday, July 31, 2009

What's in a name?

When I lived my short stint in Utah I heard some crazy names. It was a contest to come up with the most original combination of two or even three names. Most of the time they sound very made up and very ridiculous. I think that little Ashergenesis will wish he was named James by hour two of Kindergarten. Annekette is going to be known only as Anne, her close friends will tease her about telling her awful secret to the world. If your dad's name was Don, than your name would be LaDon or Donnette. If you didn't catch that, you just add a La or Ette to the end of something.

Some people name their children after a place...Paris seems to be popular, or Brooklyn. I know of a little girl that was named Andalusia, after a town in Alabama. She went by Andi.

Nothing tops the name I heard of a poor unfortunate girl in the grocery store the other day though. At first I thought, "No, that can't be for real. Maybe she brought her dog in and she's just yelling after it." I wish that was the case. I heard her mother call, in a raspy haggard voice.

"Tequilla!! Tequilla!!! I said Tequilla!!!! Girl, get your butt* over here! Whatchue got in yo mind? Runnin off like that. Now, get my grabbin stick and reach that!"

So, does she have a brother named Michelob?

*Substitute for real tearm.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

First time riding horses!

We are lucky enough to be friends with some people with horses. Or should I say Lindsay is lucky enough. We finally went over to their house and rode them. This was Abbey and Lindsay's first time riding. They both loved it, but I think that Lindsay was the most excited. Jeff even got up and rode. He led them around the trail and I think the horse had had enough. It nipped at him and was snorting and panting pretty good on the last ride.

The two horses names were Gingersnap and Susette. It was interesting to see the different personalities that they both had. Ginger was a good horse for the kids, but you had to show her who was boss up front. Susette gets spooked a bit to easy, so adults usually ride her.

I'm sure we will be back to ride them soon. I so happy that my girls got to have this experience. I remember that I loved riding horses so much when I was younger. In fact, I wanted a horse instead of a car. Maybe some day we will have a horse too.

Monday, July 20, 2009

We have a winner!!!!

Through the use of the random number generator of, we have selected the winner. The winner of the 100th post contest is Lisa Sorenson {insert fanfare here}.

She will be receiving her own set of Ms. Heidi's Ice Cream Toppings. I can't wait to make them and Jeff can't wait to assume his taste tester role.

Congrats Lisa and thank you to all who follow the blog and continue to be a part of the DeCoursey Project.

{Fade to music~Don't Stop Believin' by Journey}
Journey says congratulations Lisa.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

100th Post! Something Sweet

I can't believe I've reached my 100th post. Jeff started this blog a long time ago with the hopes that I would take it over. Me, never being one that lets herself get pushed into anything, resisted and refused to do so. I obviously relented and I have to say that I do enjoy myself.

I am happy to have made some new friends, kept up with old ones, stay connected to my family, and reconnect with other family members.

I wish that I had something to offer as a give away. Alas, I am still working on sending out stuff from my last give away. I have a year to fulfill it you know. :) I am making ice cream toppings for that particular give away. Ice cream toppings has something that I've wanted to do for a while. I make a killer caramel sauce and I am developing a hot fudge too. Maybe even a peanut butter hot fudge, inspired by my uncles great love for that particular legume. Oh, and I have a delicious butterscotch!

What the heck! I'll do a give away. I'll give away a set of Miss Heidi's Toppings to the lucky winner. If you won one before, you can still enter. I was going to let you pick what flavor you wanted, but this way you get all four!

Disclaimer: I will get this made and to you as soon as I can. That means it might be next week or a couple of months from now.

Rules: Leave a comment and let me know if there was a particular post you liked out of the 100. If you are a lurker, than could there be a better time for you to come out? You can have up to 5 entries. The cut off date is Sunday ; )

Happy 100th Post DeCoursey Project!

Monday, July 13, 2009

And now, she's 11

My sweet little Abbey is now 11 years old. Her official birthday is on the 11th of July. I was a bit busy to do a post that day, so today is the day! She had a very nice party with friends, swimming, karaoke, cake, and presents. Before showing pictures from the day, I'm going to write 11 great things about Abigale Rene'.

1. She is very sweet and loving.

2. She loves animals...ALL animals. {no, you can't have a snake.}

3. She is very creative.

4. She loves stuffed animals. Rudolph is her very favorite. I think he'll be going to college with her.

5. Her favorite color is blue. She particularly likes baby blue.

6. She likes to help out in the kitchen.

7. She is a wonderful reader. She finished the Harry Potter series by her 9th birthday.

8. She writes and draws comics. They usually have animals as the main characters.

9. She loves Mookie and Mookie loves her best. She likes to brag about it every once and a while. : )

10. She has decided to join the swimming team. I am really proud of her.

11. She has a special place in my heart. She is my first child. I will remember fondly the first two years that was just us. My little bayba.
And Bruce is once again in every birthday shot.

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Why we applaud our Veterans

*I would like to apologize for the size of the letters. Blogger is being difficult. Please bear with me.

I am taking over Heidi's blog for a moment. I've been feeling compelled to write about an experience on the 4th of July that stuck with me and made me ponder about some things. Before I do so, it was a wonderful holiday. Heidi planned out most of the details and it was great.

We were in Couer d'Alene for the holiday. Part of the morning consisted of me taking the girls over to see the parade. It was the kind of parade that I remember in my youth and what I consider all small town parades to be like. It had all of the usual characters: politicians kissing babies, strange obscure community groups, public servants (firefighters, police officer, etc.), current serving military, and Veterans. The later going first of course.

As each veteran group passed by, the crowd erupted into well deserved and appropriate applause. All throughout the parade, there was a Canadian woman there with her two children about the same age as my girls that was talking the entire time, explaining the purpose of each and every group.

The first thing that struck me as odd during this interchange was that the kids didn't understand what veterans were or why they were important. Her response is what stuck with me for the last few days, festering just below the surface.

"Americans are really into their Army and Navy. They seem to think they are important."

SEEM . . .

"They like their military and like to celebrate the people who did actual fighting. In Canada, we don't have a very big military and they aren't very important. Americans just seem to like the people who fight."

. . .

I was floored. In the moment, I didn't know what to say. I'm rather glad I didn't because it wouldn't be my usual pleasant toned and subdued sort of statement. I couldn't believe what I was hearing. Veterans not important, the tone of Americans being unsophisticated, violence-mongering people, on the 4th of July!

How could someone from a country which has a history of not being afraid of pitching in and defending freedom (For those of you who don't know, Canadian forces were part of the Normandy invasion in WWII. They took Juno Beach.) show so little regard for the sacrifices of others on her behalf? I want to go on the record that I do NOT believe her view points reflect the general attitude of all Canadians regarding veterans and military personnel, but how can you be so ignorant and raise your children to be ignorant.

Growing up it is practically part of your DNA here in the states to honor and respect veterans and definitely be aware of who they are and why they are important. My daughters are 10 and 8 and they understand why we applaud during parades.

  • Over 230 years ago, citizens cared about their freedom and their families enough to do what amounted to high treason against the crown. They were willing to sacrifice and fight to protect them. We thank them.
  • In many unfortunate opportunities since then, the men and women of our military have been called upon to defend our freedom and the freedom of others who cannot defend themselves. We thank them.
  • The sacrifices of our servicemen/women are not counted in just putting their lives on the line being willing to die for us. They sacrifice their families by being away from them, not being able to celebrate birthdays of spouses and children, having their loved ones worry about their safety, or being damaged in some sort of long term way. I live 10 miles from Fairchild Air Force Base and, as you can imagine, many of my neighbors are stationed at the base. Abbey's friend has a dad who is a pilot. He was sent away for a 12 month mission over Afghanistan. Another friend of ours is stationed in Korea for 9 months. He was able to get special permission to come home on 2-day leave for the birth of their baby and then go back. He is missing out on something great. They do it for their families and they do it for us. Josh, Helenor's dad, all of our neighbors who serve, we thank you.
  • Within our families we see the sacrifices that are made in the cause of freedom through our military. I have a few cousins who currently serve or have recently. Pilots, information gatherers, soldiers. Phillip, Andy, and the rest, I thank you.
  • Many have family members who have already served. I have an Uncle who served as an officer in the Air Force for many years. They had to uproot for each duty reassignment. He did it willingly. One of my grandfathers was a carpenter by trade. He served the Navy during WWII repairing beaten and battered warships to send them back out into battle. Larry and Grandpa, I thank you.
  • My own father is a Vietnam era Veteran. His draft card came in the first few months of his and my mother's marriage. Instead of taking a cowards way out as some did at the time by dodging the draft, he did his duty and helped to protect the freedom of others. He served in the Navy on a submarine. He served on both a fast attack boat and "boomer" keeping our enemies at bay. 3 months out, 2 to 4 weeks in. During his 8 years of service, he would only be home for about 1.7 of those years. That's 6.3 years of his newly married life sacrificed at sea. My brothers' and sister's birthdays, watching them grow up, holidays, anniversaries, the newlywed time of marriage sacrificed. I am very proud of my dad. His decision was difficult, but he did what was right. Thank you Dad.

We celebrate our servicemen and women, not because we like a good fight, but because someone is willing to sacrifice time, energy, families, and in some cases their lives for our sake and for the sake of freedom. We honor them whenever we can and do so with the respect and reverence that such sacrifices deserve. Maybe it is part our DNA as Americans.

I realize that she won't be reading this blog, but in the slimmest of chances that she ever does I want this to be here so that she can understand the real reason we will ALWAYS applaud our veterans during a parade and that maybe she can correct her flawed viewpoints and the miseducation of her children.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

I'm alive and here's proof, 4th of July happenings.

I have been absent for quite a while. I think I needed a break from the blog world, but now I'm back and ready to post the summer happenings of the DeCoursey's. I am looking forward to catching up on all of your blogs as well.

So, we had a GREAT time this year! We hopped the boarder and spent the day and having a blast in Coeur d'Alene Idaho. We got there early to get a good spot. Which we ended up moving from because someone set up a volleyball court next to us and we were the out of bounds area. After almost having our grill knocked over for about the 4th time, we decided to relocate. We found a safe haven among the trees. Not to mention, a lot more shade.

We had planned to have breakfast, lunch, and dinner in the park. I found this really cool looking pancake product that looked interesting.
It was a gamble, but it was on sale so I thought why not. It was a total FAIL. Horrible tasting and the consistency was mostly air, does not a good pancake make. After a few tries and tastes we threw it out.

For lunch we enjoyed burgers and all of the sides. The night before we made potato salad, deviled eggs, fruit salad, pretzel salad, and doctored up the beans to be ready for the grill. We also had a variety of chips and dip and of course, watermelon. In the evening we cooked riblets. Roasted marshmallows rounded everything out.

Before we ate we watched the parade. It was a hometown affair so nothing very fancy, but a lot of pride. I think Jeff is going to write about it in more detail, so I'll leave it there.

The lake was beautiful and felt great. We swam for over 2 hours. I think I could have stayed longer, but the girls were getting hungry again.

There was live music and we were right next to a huge playground. The street bordering the park and lake was pristine. The houses were immaculate and full of character. The funny thing was that not many of the owners seemed to be home. I think it's kind of a waste of a house like that. I would have a big party if I owned one and you all would be invited too.

The day played on and turned into evening. A slight breeze was blowing and it was just right. We found the perfect spot on the boardwalk to watch the fireworks.
I don't know about you, but I always get misty eyed when I watch fireworks on the 4th of July. I love my country and the colorful loud explosions seem to accurately convey my emotions for the U.S.A.

With the exception of the ridiculous amount of time it took us to get home afterwards, it was the perfect day.

God bless America. Land that I love.