New Jen's Horde

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Want to help after Katrina?

FEMA has put together a list of charities that are helping directly in the communities affected by Hurricane Katrina.

More than anything, they need money right now. Don't go there yourself until you're directed by a volunteer agency:
“Cash donations are especially helpful to victims,” Brown said. “They allow volunteer agencies to issue cash vouchers to victims so they can meet their needs. Cash donations also allow agencies to avoid the labor-intensive need to store, sort, pack and distribute donated goods. Donated money prevents, too, the prohibitive cost of air or sea transportation that donated goods require.”

“We’re grateful for the outpouring of support already,” Brown said. “But it’s important that volunteer response is coordinated by the professionals who can direct volunteers with the appropriate skills to the hardest-hit areas where they are needed most. Self-dispatched volunteers and especially sightseers can put themselves and others in harm’s way and hamper rescue efforts.”



Ruben used our photos on his Flickr Friday collage! Twice!

His theme was "threes" and I sent in the picture of the girls on Mt. Evans, and the girls dressed as Dementors from a cool Harry Potter party they attended. (Tiernan was hanging on my leg asking to go home during the Mt. Evans picture, and he was crying and asking to not have to wear his Dobby costume during the Dementor picture, so I actually had two "Three" pictures even though I have four kids.)

Check out the rest of his blog, too, he's an interesting guy!


Tuesday, August 30, 2005

They should just click their own heels together

and say, "There's no place like home."

A pair of ruby slippers worn by Judy Garland in "The Wizard of Oz" and insured for $1 million is missing from a Grand Rapids museum..."There's not a whole lot of evidence," Serfling said. "We're hoping that someone in the community has seen something."


Monday, August 29, 2005

"I'm a mur-diddly-urdler!"

This Ned Flanders Soundboard has my favorite quote!


Sunday, August 28, 2005

If you could ask a dead person any question, what would it be?

This weekend, the Gilpin Historical Society had their annual Cemetery Crawl. Actors research the people buried in one of the 12 cemeteries in Central City, and dress in period costume and tell the stories of their lives. This year they re-enacted 13 graves from the Oddfellows Cemetery, which dates back to the 1800s.

The "spirits" were doctors, miners, lawmen, founders of the town, pillars of society and others.


This woman, Mary, was very engaging, and told of how her husband remarried three years after she died, and how the new wife took over her life and probably even got her clothes, but wasn't buried next to her husband like Mary was.

At the end of her presentation, she asked if there were any questions. Maya, my seven year old, excitedly raised her hand and asked, "When you were buried, did you have any clothes on?" I could tell why she asked, because the woman had made mention that her successor got her clothing, but it didn't stop me from having that "Lord, take me now" feeling.

Luckily, Mary was a good sport and said, "Well, would you want to go to Heaven naked?" Maya said no, and Mary replied, "I didn't want to either! Of course I was buried in my clothes!" and they both laughed.

That was the only question my children asked all day. Yeah, we're fancy.


It's our first blogiversary! Woot!



Friday, August 26, 2005

Someone check the Weather Channel,

I think it may be snowing in the Underworld as we speak...

For the first time in almost eight years, after ignoring repeated pleading, cajoling, begging and bribing, Maya and Sage have finally chosen DIFFERENT haircuts!

Before now, they would ask for the exact same cut. Many times we would have to return to the salon because one thought hers was a little longer than the other, or some such defect. We tried to explain that if they cut it differently, people would be able to tell them apart more easily, but our logic fell on deaf ears.

Today, however, they strode in to Fantastic Sam's, and without even consulting the other, each picked out a new 'do from the books and asked their haircutter for it.

Different Hair Crop

That's Maya on the left, with the feminine undercut bob, and Sage with the sassy flip. She's also growing out her bangs. Will wonders never cease?


When I go to the zoo

there are already too many other humans there. I wouldn't pay to see them taking up exhibit space, too.

The scantily-clad volunteers will be treated as animals and kept amused at the central London zoo with games and music.
Scantily clad and kept amused with games and music, that pretty much sounds like everyone you ALREADY see in the summer.

And why the "fig leaves?" They don't do that to the other higher apes. If they're going to treat humans as a zoo exhibit, they should go all out, let them run naked and get them into a breeding program with other zoos. Oh, and watch out for those negative ape behaviors, they can express tension and anxiety in so many ways besides just flinging poo!


Thursday, August 25, 2005

Kung Fu Science

One of the things Davin brought to our marriage was an enjoyment of the martial arts and martial arts movies. So, over the years I've learned to appreciate them as well. While having no where near an encyclopedic knowledge of them, we've seen more than the average observer, and they're usually pretty enjoyable when you're in the right mindset.

So, when I surfed across Kung Fu Science, I couldn't help but get excited! It's a dream come true for a science nerd/martial arts fan family!

This website was created when Michelle, a physics student, determines she'd like to see if she can break boards like the Kung Fu Masters. She goes to Chris, a black belt who's trained all over Asia, to learn how. But, instead of just hacking away at a bunch of boards, she sits down and determines first through physics calculations and speed trials, whether she is even theoretically capable of such a feat.

It's an entertaining trip through Chris' demonstrations, and Michelle's calculations to the end (which I won't give away), enjoy!


Wednesday, August 24, 2005

She won the lottery and plans to buy new

nylons. Ooookay.

I hope if I won the lottery I wouldn't go all out of control and buy a bunch of stupid stuff. Goodness knows I'd hate to have Fitty worried about me. But, I'd pay to NOT have to wear nylons for the rest of my life! Hateful, beastly things.

What would you buy first?


Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Apparently, I need to move to Oregon.

Oh, shoot, I guess Colorado should be fine, too. I guess it's just me then, and not where I'm living...


Monday, August 22, 2005

Having walked around on the summit of Pikes Peak

I'm surprised this doesn't happen more often.

An experienced 59-year-old runner collapsed and died during the Pikes Peak Marathon despite attempts by competitors to save him a little more than two miles from the summit.
High fives to people who even TRY to do that, I'm amazed at what humans are capable of. And I'm really impressed with the runners who stopped to administer CPR, in our jaded world it wouldn't be surprising if people stepped over him trying to keep their place in the race.


Sunday, August 21, 2005

100 Scariest Movie Scenes of All Time

After my birthday, I start looking forward toward Halloween. I mean, really, what else is there? Well, Labor Day, but we don't decorate for that, or have movies about it or anything...

Anyway, I found this list of the 100 Scariest Movie Scenes of All Time a while back, but I dug it out again today to look for movies to rent as we head into the scary movie season.

I've already seen 76 of these, which is a good solid C.


Saturday, August 20, 2005

It's raining men!

Or at least, Hunter Thompson.


Friday, August 19, 2005


Headline: Diaper Sparks Bomb Alert

We've had a quite few "diaper bombs" that cleared rooms like that. But, the squad in this article didn't have regular reciprocal sibling vomiting to deal with. Also, I'm pretty sure they would not be equipped to handle a Triple Excrement Blitz, which we had to decontaminate quite frequently after the twins were born and before Anya was trained.


Thursday, August 18, 2005

Happy Birthday, Julie!

Can everyone go say Happy Birthday to my little sister, Julie? She's a kick-butt sister, tough as they come, and she deserves to have the best day ever, but instead she's here in the States having yet another surgery this month. [:-| <---Scary Frankenstein face, to keep the doctors away today.

I love you, Julie!


Run, um....Johnathan, Run!



Wednesday, August 17, 2005

I feel better now, I think...

Do you ever find an website and can't for the life of you remember why you surfed in there? That's the case with Causes of Necrotic Wounds other than Brown Recluse Spider Bites, but I'm glad I've read it.

According to their map, I don't have brown recluse spiders in my part of the country (the map only covers the lower 48 states of the USA, I guess the rest of you will just be left ignorant of your brown recluse status, sorry :-/) So, I don't have to worry, there are no recluses here to bite me and cause their characteristic festering, spreading wounds.

HOWEVER, they do go on (and on) to tell us, in graphic detail about the zillion other things that can cause lesions just as putrescent...and FEAR NOT, we all have them in our environments. :-D

If you haven't had the creeping willies yet today, you should give this website the once over, it's worth a few minutes of your time.


Tuesday, August 16, 2005

August 16, 1977

For those of you who aren't true believers, this is the 28th anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley.

I, however, choose to look at the folks who believe that he's not dead. This is a deadly serious business for some folks, like Bill Beeny, curator of the Elvis is Alive Museum, who not only believes Elvis faked his own death, but that he's sanctioned the exile of the "real" Lisa Marie in order to further the cover-up.

Others treat this business a little less sacredly. In the campy film Bubba Ho-Tep, Elvis long ago traded places with an Elvis impersonator and is now trapped in the impersonator's life. Aging and decrepit, he teams up with an African-American man claiming to be JFK (the late Ossie Davis) to rid their nursing home of an ancient mummy. Ooooookay.

And let's not forget The First Church of Jesus Christ, Elvis, and other such spoofs. According to their gospel:
And Elvis saw them berating the poor recording artist, whose music was terrible and lyrics insipid, and Lo, the King said unto the mob:
`Let him who is without bad singles cast the first rhinestone.'
Perhaps, my longtime personal favorite take on this whole situation comes from Mojo Nixon, in his song, Elvis is Everywhere:
Elvis is everywhere
Elvis is everything
Elvis is everybody
Elvis is still the King.
Man oh man What I want you to see
Is that the big E's
Inside of you and me.
According to Nixon, not only is everything made of Elvis (except Michael J. Fox, whom he terms the "Evil Anti-Elvis") but he goes on to explain that Elvis built the pyramids and Stonehenge, and that weird things happen in the Bermuda Triangle because, "Elvis needs boats." The song ends like a rousing tent revival as he urges everyone to call up their inner Elvis...

Not a bad legacy for a surviving twin from Tupelo Mississippi who died alone on a bathroom floor, he'll obviously never be forgotten.


Monday, August 15, 2005



I found some amazingly strong magnets at Hobby Lobby. They're called "Power Magnets," and they'll stick anything to anything.

The kids and I started off discussing magnetic properties while working with them, but being the bad mom that I am, it wasn't long before I was leading them down the path to complete goofiness:
Magnet nose Jen
Yes, those are MAGNETS, holding my nose together.


While many of the children partook of this behavior, only one would allow himself to be photographed:
Magnet nose Tiernan


I guess the others are more mature than Tiernan and I?


Sunday, August 14, 2005



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Really, I think this is cool that U2 has received an award for their work for humanitarian causes.

But, would it have killed Bono to dress up a little while meeting with the President of Portugal? Maybe wear a tie, or at least take off the stupid hat and sunglasses? He looks like he's meeting friends for country line dancing after this or something.

Here's a clue, if a guy with the title of President will be pinning medals on you at any point during the day, at least button your shirt most of the way up...


Saturday, August 13, 2005

Proof of Life

Here we are outside the Argo tunnel, after having traversed the entire Double Eagle Mine:

ARGO-L-G at Arog Tunnel

Renee said in the comments of the earlier post, "LOL! She wanted to go...I promise. She just likes to think these kind of thoughts." It's true! I don't know what it is, I don't get sad or panicky at all, I just picture all sorts of destruction and devastation whenever the opportunity arises. So, if we're going to a mine of course I assume that the mine is eventually going to may well be today. Just in case I'm letting you all know that's why I quit blogging.

I also routinely give my husband instructions on what to do if I die. Not big things, I think everyone does that. Stuff like, "Oh hey, if I die today, you should know that I have steaks marinading and you should eat them tomorrow for dinner." Maybe I should lay off the CSI?


Friday, August 12, 2005

We're not dead!

More later, but I didn't want anyone to worry...


Argo Mine

This is where we're going to be all day today on a field trip. So, if you see on the news that it collapsed and I never write in my blog again, you'll know I've perished wretchedly, buried in the merciless, cold earth. "Come! let the burial rite be read–the funeral song be sung!" Sorry, waxing Poe-ish.

In the event that we don't all die in a horrid cave-in, I'll post pictures later...


Thursday, August 11, 2005

The eternal optimist

I just figured out that you can check Technorati to see where your blog is ranked in the blogosphere.

This is how you can tell I'm a real "the glass is half full" kind of girl, because when I saw that my blog is #95,012, my first thought wasn't dismay at the low was, "Out of how many?"


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I got carded! Woot!

Check out my hot little underage-looking self, and the offending product I was trying to purchase earlier this evening:

Oh yeah, I'm a glue sniffin' freak, you can tell. Seriously, how old do you have to be to buy glue? I'm pretty sure I look over 21...

Wait, maybe it was that giant zit-stellation on my chin that confused her? :-/

Anyway, I can't think of a better way to spend the eve of my 35th Birthday. Thank you, Cashier at Michaels, and Happy Birthday to Me!


Tuesday, August 09, 2005

I'm keeping better track of my stuff!

You never know where your random stuff ends up, but apparently some of it surfaces at Found Magazine. They collect up all those cryptic notes, pictures and the other flotsam and jetsam of our busy lives and display it.

Some of these notes need no explanation:

Paul and Olivia-Our doorbell is not a toy, stop ringing it or I'll have to call your parents.
This one makes you wonder if the author is OK:

Watch what you say Jon has had this whole house bugged from the get go-i saw and heard the equipment. More Later!
This note, written on some sort of cartoonish zoo stationery, actually sort of freaks me out. You hope for the parents' sake that the neighbor's mistaken, but then you don't want to wish a paranoid neighbor on anyone, either... It simply says:
To the parent(s) of the girl who live on the 2nd floor. Please come next door to 44 Taft 1st Fl + ring the doorbell, I need to discuss your daughter's advances toward my husband.
I wish I'd been a fly on the wall when they got THAT note...

Go check the rest of it out!


Monday, August 08, 2005


If you've been reading here for any length of time, you know that I just love to post about zombies. There's just something about a good (or bad) zombie movie that makes me happy, I don't know why. Depraved childhood, I guess.

Anyway, as I was catching up with The Sneeze today, I saw that Steve had asked nearly the same zombie question I'd asked in one of my earlier posts, namely, what happens if zombies have to go without brains for some length of time?

Check out his post and take time to read the hilarious comments. There are a LOT more people out there chewing this topic over in their brains than I could ever have hoped!


I'd be freaked out enough as it is...

Weather Forces NASA to Delay Landing

They already know that big piece of foam fell off, just like the one that doomed Columbia, and even though everyone's telling them it's just fine, I know *I'D* be feeling a lot better after re-entry.

But, that's probably why they don't let people like me in the Space Shuttle program in the first place. I'd be clogging up the airwaves all the time with my Drama Queen nonsense, or else I'd be goofing off..."Houston, we have a problem, Erickson drank the last of the Tang," or some such thing.


Sunday, August 07, 2005

On Top of the World!

OK, not really. And we drove most of the way, but DARN IT we hiked the last bit up to the 14,258 ft. summit of Mt. Evans! Except for Tiernan, who got carried, cheater.

ME-Lindner-Greens on top of world

You'll note that my fat butt is NOT one of the ones that had to lay down after the hike:
ME-Maya and Tiernan tired from the climb
I will accept High Fives from "big girls" everywhere on this one...

One of the coolest things about this trip was the amazing clouds rolling in. We actually drove through them, we were that high up! Check them out!
ME-More clouds

This was my family's offering for our homeschool group's co-op, you may recognize the topic from our fact-finding trip last month. We planned a picnic at Echo Lake and then a drive to the summit. Early that day our plans were nearly foiled by reports that the road was closed above Summit Lake by a mudslide, but they cleared it away in time. In all, 7 families attended with 18 children, and it was a great day!


How does it feel

to top the list of 100 books, songs, and movies that "changed the world?" That's what I'd like to ask Bob Dylan's "Like a Rolling Stone."

According to the article the second place was taken by Elvis' "Heartbreak Hotel."

I'd like to see the original article, because I wonder if there was a time limit put on it. Were they supposed to select from the last 100 years? If not, it's looking like Mozart and that Shakespeare guy got shafted.


Saturday, August 06, 2005

How's this for annoying?

My power steering is making a horrible sound, and we can't fix it. Not because we don't know a reputable mechanic, or because we're out of money or anything.

It's because we can't open the hood. It's not just us, the mechanics can't get it open, either. They took the grille off and everything! Apparently, the cable is fine, but the hood latch is jammed and we have to take it to the dealership. Hopefully they can open it without having to do something horrible and expensive to it (more expensive than the initial charge of actually using the dealer for repairs, I mean.)

It's a 1997 Dodge Caravan, and it's turned that corner from being a good reliable car to doing the equivalent of parlor tricks like "Stump the Mechanics" when it gets the chance. Ugh.


Friday, August 05, 2005


Laura found a pretty neat site, Stencilry, where they have amazing stencils and lots of tutorials, too.

She asked what stencil we would choose for a T-shirt. After looking them over, I'd go with this fabulous Salvador Dali:
Free Image Hosting at

And, although I guess I can see the artistic symbolism of going where no man has gone before and all that...I would have to give the "Risen Christ Flashing the 'Live Long and Prosper' Sign" (or whatever they call this one) a miss:
Free Image Hosting at

What would you choose?


Is it too early to decorate for Halloween?

I hope not, because I've already started? Check out my early birthday present, the Rest in Pieces Mausoleum. Oooooh 'Pooky! (That's toddler twinspeak for "spooky." They also didn't like food that was too 'Picy, which means it had flavor. I'm glad they're getting older.)


Wednesday, August 03, 2005


I know polite girls don't talk about these things, but I just spent all afternoon Rasterbating, and MAN I can't wait to show this neat new trick to Davin when he gets home!

I know it sounds dirty, but really it's just a program that takes any image and blows it up as large as 20 meters (that's over 65 feet for us stupid Americans) and formats it so you can print it for yourself. To get an idea of how people Rasterbate in their own homes, check out their gallery.

I made a photo of my lovely Dementor girls from a Harry Potter party earlier this year:
R-Dementors 2
It took 16 sheets of paper, but I think it turned out well. Since it's made of a bunch of dots, it looks better from farther away. Up close it's hard to make out:
R-close up
But, really Seurat CHOSE to paint this way, and his stuff hangs in galleries all over the world.

My verdict? This is very cool! It can be a little tough on your ink cartridges, but art is pain, baby. And a word of caution, after staring at all of the little dots while piecing this together and inhaling the rubber cement the whole time, I do think that if you rasterbate too much you could definitely go blind...


Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Sound Effects :-0

Yesterday, I was talking to my dear friend Anne while she was on her cell phone, and I heard her get into a car accident!

It didn't sound nearly as awful over the phone as it would have in a movie, and I had the added benefit of hearing her yell at the other driver "I HAVE THE GREEN LIGHT!" as it was happening and then she told me "I have to go," so it was pretty obvious she wasn't injured and was in full possession of her faculties at all times during the incident. And that it wasn't her fault (isn't that always what you want to know next, after you're assured that people are OK? Maybe I'm just a bad person...)

Before you worry, it was a mere bumper kiss between two vans, and no one was hurt. It wasn't Anne's fault, the other driver HAD run the light.

It started me to wondering...with the news stories on how bad it is to talk on your cell phone while driving, and how often everyone does it, it seems like we'd hear this sort of thing all the time. I thought I'd do some research, and I found this article that shed some light on the subject.

[T]he hard data tells a different story.

The oft-repeated "driving with a cell phone equals drunk driving" comment is based on a small 1997 Canadian study that didn't take other driving distractions into account. A much more comprehensive 2001 University of North Carolina study found that cell-phone use was responsible for only 1.5 percent of distracted driving accidents -- completely contrary to popular belief.

Much larger risks were outside events, other occupants in the vehicle and drivers adjusting radio and CD players.
The article goes on to say that cell phone usage has been the victim of statistical and political manipulation, and that, while it's not good to be distracted while driving, the use of cell phones causes less accidents than other distractions that we think nothing of, such as children in the car, or eating while driving. (My BIL totalled his car while eating, no lie!)

So, for future reference, drive responsibly no matter what's going on in your car. And, if you're talking on your cell phone and you get into a fender bender, do call the other person back right away like Anne did. Even though I was pretty sure she wasn't hurt, that didn't keep me from picking up stakes and moving myself to Freakout City until I heard from her that she was A-OK and on her way...


My sister's having surgery today!

Please stop by her blog and wish her well, and say a few prayers? Thanks!

Update: She's out of surgery and doing well. They won't know for a while if the surgery "worked."


Monday, August 01, 2005

Do-Si-Oh, HECK No!

This is about time for everyone to gear up for the next homeschool year. So, the human interest pieces are popping up in the local papers. Homeschool support group leaders like myself are getting more phone calls as people start to decide they're not going to send the kids back to school, so now they're wondering what should they do? (My next big rush of calls will come over the winter break like clockwork, but I digress.)

Christopher Smith writes a humorous weekly column about his experiences as a homeschool dad. I've been following his articles on and off since someone brought this one to my sleep deprived attention about a year ago.

This week he's written a great one spelling out his reasons why his family homeschools, called Why do we homeschool? Two words: Square dancing. It's really unique because it doesn't fall into the traps so many homeschool articles do. He doesn't make his family sound perfect, he doesn't make the schools sound awful. He doesn't make it seem like homeschooling is the only choice for parents who love their children, yet he does make it seem desireable and a workable solution. Plus, it's just a good fun read. Enjoy!


Ah HA!

Maybe this is my probl


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