Friday, November 30, 2007

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Suburban Sunrise

Even here on our way to work and school, we have glimpses of unreal beauty.

1 "Arise, shine, for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord rises upon you. 2 See, darkness covers the earth and thick darkness is over the peoples, but the Lord rises upon you and his glory appears over you. Isaiah 60:1,2

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Spittin' Images

On the MyHeritage site you can submit a picture of a kid along with pictures of the parents to see who he/she looks more like. I did this during Thanksgiving vacation. First picture, Bridget tilts the scale toward her mother, me. I agree, she has pretty much always looked like me though I sometimes see a bit of John in her.

The next picture, Maria tilts the scale toward John. I'll go there as Maria is pretty much the splitting image of John's sister.

Now things get dicier. Edward, who has always been a male version of his mother, me, actually tilted the scale to John. It's ok, they're both male. Must be John's goatee that attracts the needle.

I tried new pictures of Edward & me and this must be more accurate.

I tried another one of BeeBop, and it went to John! What?

Now this next one is more like it. Maria looks equally like us both. I think that pictures capture different facets of the face at different moments in time and so can look like different facets of the parents face at any given time. That is my theory.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Netherlands Nuesday 7

Today we have some video footage from the Zijl Family reunion, September 15, 2007.

Monday, November 26, 2007

The Meaning of a Name

Our last name sounds kind of like a smile or a slippery fish, but if you look it up in Urban Dictionary, you might be surprised. Here is the link to the definition.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Body Double

This past holiday weekend, I've had a little time to explore the sight which can analyze a picture of your face and tell you who you look like. I blogged about this last year, but to review, I looked the most like Jacki O.

They now have a feature which allows you to see how you morph into someone else:

So now when people are staring at me trying to think of who it is I remind them of, I can say, well, I do have a 78% likeness to Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. I just need a brunette hair-do and oh, a string of pearls which I do have.

I tried a different picture of an older 45 year old version of me and now they say I look like the ever-perky Katie Couric. I think the mouth is really off on this one!

It's kind of fun. You should try it.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Feeling Vestive

Bridget, the Blogger, & the Queen Mother

It's hard to believe it's the time of year again where you go out shopping for Christmas. We realized that we were all wearing vests while we shopped and feeling quite festive about it so of course we wanted to have our picture taken. Even with shopping, it has been a very relaxing Thanksgiving vacation

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

from our table to yours. Bridget, Maria, Edward, John, Me, Dad, Beatrix, Mom.

For our dinner, we had ham, potatoes mashed with turnips, sweet potatoes, broccoli, and pumpkin pie. We included the rooster in this photo since we didn't have turkey. Mom is finding many cleaning projects to keep herself busy here. I'm busy handing her stuff.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Netherlands Nuesday 6

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Building in Groningen, September, 2007

This building reminded me of a fancy cake or a little tin soldier.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Back and Forth

Bridget to the far right in an exciting volley

We have enterred a new chapter of our life as sports fans. We are done forever with chasing Edward all over the cross country course and next Spring will be the last time we watch him run round and round. For now, I will be sitting in the stands watching Bridget & friends hit the volleyball back & forth to the opposing team. It's been fun so far.

Sunday, November 18, 2007


We had a pre-Thanksgiving day feast today down at our little church downtown and I must say it was fantastic to eat with our "family" down there. We had everything - 2 deep fried turkeys, stuffing, mashed potatoes, squash, pumpkin pie, and for those who know me well - STOMACH ACHE! I'm glad I had practice, because I will watch it on the real day this Thursday.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Bloggable Buckeyes

From deep within Woverine Territory, Maria & Bridget are happy for their cousins that the Buckeyes won today.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Flash Back Friday 43

Happy Birthday to Uncle Al, a little late - that's him in the 1950's!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

The Sands of Time

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A friend of mine took a trip to Israel & Jordan in October for 2 weeks. She asked me to pray for her before she left - 2 weeks is a long time to be so far away from your family - so I did. I was thinking later that I should have asked her to bring me back some dirt or something because that would have been cool to have some actual dirt that might have been around in Bible times, but I didn't think of it at the time. She brought me back something even better - colored sand in a bottle - I don't know how they got it in there like that - from the archaeological site of Petra in Jordan. I put it next to Oma's Bijbel.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Something for a Cold November Day

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The Queen Mother's Squash Soup
2 med squash (summer or acorn)
1/2 t. curry 4 c. chicken broth 1/2 t. dry mustard
1/2 c chopped leaks 1/2 t. ginger salt pepper

More or less of the ingredients may be added. Can use both types of squash.Place on cookie sheet: whole, unpeeled squash in 375 degree oven for 1 hour or until soft. (Test by piercing w/knife) Remove from oven and cool. When cool (or warm) peel squash and core. Cut into chunks and place in sauce pan w/chicken stock, leaks and seasonings. Simmer for 1/2 hour. Blend hot soup in small batches in the blender. Correct seasonings. Freezes well.

I made this for my kids a couple of weeks ago and told them all to pretend like they were eating squash baby food. It does have a bit more zest.

Monday, November 12, 2007

That Wacky November Frost

Bridget posing in front of the first frost before school on November 9. Yes, the petunias have seen a better day.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Our Stories

Click on this link to watch a 16 minute video which the seniors on the Cross Country team made at our house mostly. Last night, we went to a cross country potluck to celebrate the end of the season. Edward has made many great friends in his 4 years on the team. I remember once when his coach said at the end of the season, if you're sad, then that's good because you know you had a good thing. The thing he said last night that I remember most (and I've heard it before but it's good to be reminded) is that God created people because he loves stories. The cool thing about this video is that it shows a bit of each of their stories and how they came together as a team to create it. It's something I'm sure they will never forget.

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Calvin Calvin Sing We All to Dee

So I made it over to Calvin College 3 times this week! The first time was for a meeting for volunteers to be marshalls and umpires at the Cross Country NCAA Great Lakes Division 3 Regionals. I went over with Edward and learned about our volunteer jobs for Saturday's race.

Thursday evening, we went to a Scholar's Reception which Edward had been invited to to hear about their honors program. We saw our old friends Sam and Barb there with their son and talked about how it seemed like yesterday, our boys were just little babies.

This morning we went over to the race and I'm glad to say both the men's and women's teams are headed to Nationals!

Oh, if you go to this Calvin link, and scroll to the bottom, you might see the above picture of Edward playing his cello (on the right in the gray shirt.) I found it by accident!

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Virtual Reality

This really doesn't happen that often - but I thought made a good picture when it did.

Quite a few years ago, I belonged to not one but 2 book clubs. We would read a book a month and then get together to discuss them. Things are different now - not as much time it seems. A friend of mine who is an editor invited me to be in a book club on Shelfari (See book shelf on the right.) We'll see how it goes in the virtual world.

As if I'm not virtual enough - I started a Facebook at John's suggestion a couple of weeks ago. About a third of the people in my church including our 2 pastors are my Facebook friends so far. My kids are not because it's probably best that our virtual worlds not collide.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Netherlands Nuesday 4: The Search for the Perfect Wheat Cracker

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I may have mentioned before how much fun it was to go in the grocery stores in The Netherlands. Marianna decided that her digestive system would be more functional if she continued with her steady daily diet of wheat crackers. In the US, she has settled on (I think she said) the Kroger brand of Wheat Thins as the Perfect Cracker and she eats them daily. It turned out to be not quite as easy as you would think to find a wheat thin-like cracker, but we managed to have some pretty good ones. The sea salt variety, though not high in wheat and fiber content, turned out to be a very tasty one in the van rides throughout the country. It was especially poignant when eating them while looking out the window when the sea is higher than you are.

Oh, by the way, since I have been home, I think I have discovered the Ultimate Wheat Cracker: It is the Kellogg's Multi-Grain All Bran Cracker. I like to blog with these.

Monday, November 05, 2007

Reflection 2

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November 3, 2007, Michigan

So if no one is there when this tree falls, will it still make a sound?

Sunday, November 04, 2007

The Day I Turned 45

So yesterday since it was Saturday, John said we could do whatever I wanted.

"Hmm, I said, let's go for a hike and then go out to the Macaroni Grill."

The fall trees were still beautiful, unusual for November 3. We set our departure time for 4pm so the kids could do their Saturday stuff and we could too. Maria drove us down to a big state preservation area where we could hike deep into the Michigan Woods. We were alone in that woods.

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We walked for about 3 miles through deep leaves and bumpy terrain. We enjoyed the sights and the girls even loved looking at their big brother. Maybe they do this for fun.
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On the way home, John said, "That was a good hike." The whole hike thing took longer than we projected, so on the way home we decided to order pizza and have cake at home.
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Since last year's Geek Gift, the external hard drive, turned out to be such a hit with me, John repeated the stunt with a Colorimeter with calibration software and a 2GB flash drive. Ok, I did request these - they will make life easier.

Saturday, November 03, 2007

Friday, November 02, 2007

Flash Back Friday 41

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Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1950's in Willard, OH
Please note this was before I was born.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

The Pre-Pre-B-day Party

This afternoon, I was able to soak in the warm fall colors of fall by hot tubbing with my friend Lori next to her Maple tree with bright red fall leaves. Usually, the leaves are gone by now, but it has been a warm fall. So now I will get to enjoy a warm colored birthday. Lori & I have marked grand occasions, her b-day, my b-day, New Year's eve, by having coffee in the hot tub in her back yard, and since I'm about to turn 45, we found it a good excuse to do it again.

She gave me these pictures she took last night of Bridget, her daughter Elise & friends in their costumes & with their candy haul.
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Oh, and that ghost showed up again.