July 29, 2010


Dole has launched a marketing campaign for things you can do with bananas after the sun goes down.  I know because there was a sticker on my banana that says Go bananas after dark!

I love going bananas! anytime of day, so I checked out their website.  They offer P.M. recipes that include ways to incorporate nanners into your backyard bbq, salads, desserts and s'mores!

See that picture?  Dole.com calls these Grilled Bacon Maple Banana Bites.

Dudes, whatever.  Those are straight up Bacon Wrapped Bananas!


July 22, 2010

on remembering I have faith {part two}

This is what I do. I obey the commandments and I seek to do Your will and I try my best to love others the way You do.

I read books about how to do it better, and I ask for You to show me how, and I try to form new habits and think in new ways and I strive for understanding and come up with ideas to do it more and offer suggestions for how to achieve it.

I write lists and read books and listen to wise counsel, start projects and make notes and if I can just be better and stronger, learn more, try harder, I can repair, restore, renew, help, heal, understand, change.

But I am weary, and things never change. I never change.

And then,

Is this what I own?

Knowledge that goads me into believing I can think my way through it
Diligence that wraps me in false security, for if I Just. Keep. Trying.
Independence disguised as obedience

And I wince at the familiar sting - I’ve been doing things my own way, the way that I own. Thinking it will be me, all my lists and ideas and efforts, well-intentioned as they may be, that will cause and effect; sweet victory will be mine because I studied and sacrificed and never gave up.

But if I cling to my things, my ways....

...nay, my most prized possessions...

...am I missing the greatest splendors?

Don't I trust enough to walk without relying on myself, on what I own?
Words find me; whispered among the stockpile and rations of books and lists and ideas.

Give up what you own. Then come, loved one, follow me. All things are possible with God.

part one

July 21, 2010

land of enchantment

Aaron and I drove to New Mexico in late June. I mentioned the giant grass-hopper sighting we had on the way there.  What I neglected to tell you about was all the other wildlife we encountered.

Somewhere between Ozona and Fort Stockton, we came upon Paisano Pete, the Roadrunner.  He was just about the biggest roadrunner I've ever seen.  He seemed friendly enough, at first. But when it was time for us to be on our way, he became a bit pesky...

... meep meep...
After Aaron snapped this picture of Paisano Pete trying to make off with his wife, he dropped the camera and rescued me from what surely would have been a tragic ending.
Whew! That was close!

Later that afternoon, we visited Carlsbad Caverns and loitered around a cave entrance in hopes of seeing hundreds of thousands of Mexican Free-tail bats fly out for their nightly feeding. The park rangers call it "The Bat Flight."  Doesn't that sound so thrilling?
Come witness the spectacular Bat Flight!

I was particularly excited because I've tried unsuccessfully several times to witness this same bat phenomenon right here in my own town.  Unfortunately for us, nature did not cooperate and the New Mexico bats didn't exit en mass that evening.  Foiled again!

But we did see this giant fly.
(The bat is for scale.  It's not a real bat.)

But wait, look! A big bat head is biting Aaron!

{thinks to self Why is all the wildlife on this trip unusually large?}

The next day, we visited the Living Desert Zoo and Gardens. While we did expect to see wildlife there (duh), I did not expect to see any creatures outside of their faux natural habitats.

But then there was this.
I wouldn't have been so surprised if this was a normal moth.
But, obviously, it is the elusive Enormous New Mexico Desert Wall Moth.

The highlight of our trip to New Mexico was attending my cousin's wedding. The ceremony was held way up in the mountains of Pecos National Forest, in a grassy field surrounded by magical Aspen trees.
It was beautiful.
Summer sun tinkling down through the Aspen leaves
cool mountain air
electricity of impending late-afternoon mountain storm
Love and Kissing and Mariachis

and then this butterfly landed on my sweet Aaron

wild and free to land anywhere it pleases in all of this glorious creation
and it chose Aaron.
{even fellow-wedding-goer-dude was impressed}

I think, for just a moment, it was contemplating slipping into that pocket.
But it fluttered away.

Then I thought of this quote from Charles Dickens
I only ask to be free. The butterflies are free.
Mankind will surely not deny me what it so willingly concedes to the butterflies.

I painted that quote on a coffee table I had in college. I loved that table. My Dad and I made it together before I moved to Austin, especially for my college apartment.
I wish I had a picture of it. I should look for one.

Back to oversized wildlife spottings.

Now this last thing is actually the first thing we stopped at on the trip. And it's not exactly wildlife.
But it used to be wildlife. And it was big.
Although it is officially the The Deer Horn Tree, Aaron advised that it is not exclusively deer horns. There are antlers and skulls from other horned wildlife.

Isn't it kind of weird? And also interesting?

and slightly scary?

The end.

July 19, 2010

on remembering i have faith {part one}

Life squalls, threatening to capsize me if I don’t figure it out and


But then,

what if I am the storm?

flesh feverish with a thousand thoughts slicing wild-hot
bones crashing loud with earnest effort
heart raging with determination
soul gusting fierce to opposition

Words find me, breathe calm to my tempest.

Peace! Be Still!

July 13, 2010

if you feed a longhorn lavender

When Aaron asked me what I wanted to do on Saturday, I'm pretty sure he was not expecting to find himself frolicking in lavender fields.

I think he was looking for an answer more along the lines of

a) purchase a new mattress
b) chores that are long overdue
c) hat/cap shopping at Academy, because a man can never have too many hats (...?)

Really, we didn't frolic. Aaron did take me to a lavender farm, though.

It's somewhere between Wimberley and Blanco, which makes for a lovely drive.

At the farm you can cut, snip, pick and smell your own lavender.

After all that hard work to harvest your basket of lavender love, it's nice to sit on the double-seater swing under a big oak tree with your soul-mate while enjoying your lavender ice cream and gazing out across the rolling hill country. Just then, a gentle longhorn may wander over. And if you hold your ice cream out, he might come close enough to sniff it then snort into it deciding he's not in the mood for ice cream. Suddenly, you may lose your appetite as well.

But you will be simply satisfied with the fruits of your five-minutes of labor.

July 11, 2010

who did see that

We've had another impossible-to-see grasshopper sighting.  Aaron spotted this katydid hidden in a lavender plant. Can you even find it in the picture? It's like one of those hidden pictures in the back of a Highlights magazine.

It's always so funny to me how this happens.  We're walking along, and Aaron doesn't even stop or look down, he just keeps walking and says see that katydid? And I'm like what? where? in the sky 10 feet in front of you?

And he says No, right there, buried deep in the foliage of that plant we passed 6 paces ago.

And he'll stop and reverse to the spot and show me.

And I'm not kidding, I had to get on my knees and part the Red Sea to see this katydid.  I just stuck the camera into the jungle and hoped I was getting a picture of it. Then I spent the rest of the day saying katydid.

Aaron: Did you throw that trash away?
Angela: No, but katydid.

Aaron: What movie did you rent?
Angela: I don't know, but katydid.

Which inevitably turned into Sadiedid because, well, duh.

Aaron: Do you want some lemonade?
Angela: No, but Sadiedid!

please tell me you just spent 10 minutes over at the Highlights website doing one of those Hidden Pictures... because idid!

July 05, 2010


My three-year-old neighbor brought these flowers to me yesterday.

He picked them from his butterfly garden. He said he wanted to brighten my day.

It worked.

July 02, 2010

peeled like a banana

This is a grasshopper.

Let me tell you a story about this grasshopper.

Picture if you will: It’s mid-morning, the sun is bright, the clouds are fluffy and the New Mexico state line is only a few hours away. Aaron and I are zooming along, nary another motorist on the open road, I’m jabbering about something very important, like how I think I’m past the awkward stage of growing out my hair and I’m actually starting to like it again and it looks pretty normal in a pony-tail and I think I can even do a French braid without all the too-short neck strands sticking out, but is a French braid okay for a 31-year old or is that only for tennis players and small people, when all of a sudden...

EEERRRRRRT just like that we have screeched to a halt on the side of the road.

At first I thought Aaron was going to turn to the back seat and exclaim to the duffel bags and snack cooler “If you kids don’t stop fighting I’m going to turn this van around and nobody gets to meet Mickey Mouse!”

But then I realized we were quickly reversing along the shoulder of I-10.

I don’t know exactly how far we reversed, but I’d say from previous word problem experience, that given the time it takes to alarmingly decelerate from 75 mph and reverse back to the point you began to decelerate, it was about, oh, maybe, I don’t know, like a quarter mile? A hundred yards? I really have no idea.

I do know it was long enough for me to say something along the lines of whatarewedoing whathappened what’sgoingon iseverythingokay ohmygosh isthereadeadbodyrolledincarpetonthesideoftheroad what’shappening didsomethingflyoffthecar didweforgetsomething?!

Please note that up to this point Aaron had not said A. Single. Word.

Luckily, just before my bulging panicky eyes pop out of my head and my neck breaks from whipping my head around to see out of the car in every possible direction to find out what has caused this sudden backwards driving down the Interstate, the car comes to a stop and Aaron undramatically says "see that grasshopper?"

So yes. Aaron spotted a grasshopper while driving 75 mph. A grasshopper which God wonderfully and strategically created to blend in to its environment. Are you surprised? Because I wasn't. And then Aaron was able to reverse to the exact spot and see it again! I know objects in mirror are closer than they appear, but really Aaron just has Eagle eyes. Regarding this talent, he says "just look for something that doesn't belong."

After the grasshopper inspection and photoshoot we were back on our way and I decided to play the spot-things-on-the-road-that-don't-belong game. Only my version consists of enthusiastically hollering out what I see. Things like PIECE OF TIRE!  SONIC BAG LITTER!  STRAY TRAFFIC CONE!

I kept asking Aaron if he had spotted each item before I yelled pointed it out. But he was busy concentrating on not running over all the helpless little ants crossing the road.