Wednesday, October 15, 2008


I've got a long list of things that I'm stumped about, and I'm going to share them in hopes that somebody out there might have some answers for me!

First, and this isn't that big of a deal, but why do I like the below picture? It's random and kind of weird, but I like it! But I would love it if it meant something. Any creative ideas how this picture could be meaningful? Do any of you have a story about kid feet and a vase that you'd like to share with me?

Next, why is it that when your house is clean, nobody spontaneously shows up to see it, but when it is dirty you get all kinds of unexpected visitors. Last week I had the lovely experience of showing the upstairs half of my house to friends who'd never seen it before, and it was seriously you-could-hardly-walk-down-the-hall messy and seriously embarrassing. I don't know why I agreed to let them see it! I definitely learned my lesson, and have since had the upstairs decently clean, but I've had nobody to show it to. I almost want to call someone--anyone--"Hi, it's MAG. The upstairs of my house is clean. Can you please come look at it? Please!?"

And how do I say no to dough? Cookie dough, that is, and not eat cookies all day long if I know they're just sitting there lonely in the bread drawer? It doesn't help that they're the best cookies EVER. I thought I was missing something when for years I didn't know how to bake yummy cookies. Now that I know how, I'm wishing I didn't. It takes all my will power not to make them at least once a week. Here's the recipe for Ultimate Chocolate Chip Cookies: (Thanks, Kandis!)

3/4 c. butter-flavored shortening
11/4 c. packed dark brown sugar
2 TBS milk
1 TB vanilla
1 egg
13/4 c. wheat flour
1 tsp salt
3/4 tsp baking soda
1 c. chocolate chips
(can add oatmeal, pb and toffee chips for fun)

Combine shortening, sugar, milk and vanilla--mix. Beat in egg until well mixed and lighter in color. Add flour, salt and baking soda, then chocolate chips and other add-ins if desired. Drop rounded teaspoonfuls 3 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet. Bake at 375 for 8-10 minutes (chewy) or 11-13 minutes (crisp). Don't over bake! Remove cookies to foil to cool.

And on to the next thing I'm stumped about. I'm working on cleaning out my laptop in hopes of selling it. But it has an atrocious number of pictures saved to it. Today I started uploading them to photobucket, wanting to have backups of my snapshots on the Internet. Yeah, that'll pretty much take forever. Where do you guys back up your pictures? Any secrets? Whisper over here.

Finally, I'm still trying to figure out how to do everything--everything I want to do and everything I feel like I should do. It seems like right when I get one thing going, another thing falls off the map. Right now exercising and reading are remote villages on my map and photography and writing are capital cities. And I love reading and I love exercising! How could they fall off? Can't I do every last thing I want to do?

But the last thing I want to say, and if you read nothing I just wrote, I do hope you at least see this:

Thank you! I truly love reading all of your blogs. They lift me up and inspire me to be better. And thank you for the kind and encouraging comments you've sent my way. They are so sweet and uplifting. I really love you all!


  1. Marie...YOU are inspiring! I love reading your thoughts. I wish I had something great to say to help you with some of your questions...but I really don't. Except, thanks for the cookie recipe! I'm always looking for yummy cookies to make...which leads to the same problem you are facing. So, maybe you shouldn't have posted the recipe!!!

    Love all your're gettin' good!

  2. ditto on the YOU are inspiring for sure!!

    #1. i too am really drawn to that picture. i love chilrens feet for one, and it also falls into the rule of thirds...something about how our brain responds to images, the rule of thirds is appealing to learn more...

    #2. i want some cookies!!! however they are currently banned from our house due to me having to be in a bathing suit in a little over a month. ugh!!

    #3. i too struggle with fitting it all in, but i try to stay present in the moment, and do whatever it is i am doing 100%, and when i move on to the next thing do that 100%, when i do this i find i accomplish than when i am "thinking" of all that i am not doing. sounds hokey but it totally works!! my tolleyism for that day:)!!

    you are so talented, and it is one of the best parts of my day reading your blog!!

  3. Well, thanks for the cookie recipe! You know I'm always trying to improve my baking skills. I can't wait to make these!

    Do you have an iPod? Gib always listens to audiobooks. You could listen to them while you work out and kill 2 birds with 1 stone! :)

    I think you should just like that picture because it's cute and you like it. Sometimes strange is beautiful, you know? Put it in one of those 12 empty frames you have upstairs! hahaha

    And don't worry about the mess in your house. At least you have room to be messy! I can't keep our apartment uncluttered and Sofie's toys are multiplying quickly. Right now there's literally a path from the front door to the kitchen! Now that's bad! But luckily no one comes to visit our bat cave...

    Keep the pictures coming! I LOVE them all!!

  4. Wow! Thanks for the helpful comments! I've thought about "being in the moment" all day long. Thanks, Shannon. :) I'm so bad at that. And I started watching some of Michael's tutorials today. I would have sooner, but I have to use Will's computer for that because mine doesn't have sound. He's awesome, though!

    And no, I don't have an Ipod, but I should get one. That's a really good idea about reading and working out at the same time. Anyway, I'm off to work out right now! :)

    Thanks, you guys. :)

  5. BTW, Wonka is me, Marie. I'm just signed in as Will. haha

  6. To start: I love both of those pictures. I agree with Shannon on the 3rds and also with baby feet. Something so scrumptious about those little toes and all the chub. And that first one of Miss B is so cute!
    Next: As one of the ladies you showed your "messy" upstairs to, it really wasn't that bad. It was so fun to see your cute kids' rooms!! Call me anytime when your house is clean and I'll come right over and admire everything again!
    I keep worrying about backing up our pictures as well. It freaks me out when I hear stories of people having problems with their computers and losing all of their pictures!! I use Snapfish, but I haven't taken on any big downloads yet.
    And, mmmmm! Cookie dough! I sneak it because I know I shouldn't give it to the kids, but I can't resist it myself. I grew up eating it - sometimes we'd make the dough just to eat the dough - no cookies baked.
    And I love your blog. You are so articulate in the way you express yourself. You inspire me!

  7. Hi Marie! I really like the picture of the vase and feet. If you want some meaning, the first thing that came to mind is a vase holds things, perhaps ideas, creativity, frontiers to explore and those darling little feet are the vehicles for exploring those things and are obviously tired out! I love your blog too. You are always so positive so um, right back at ya! Oh, and I back up my photos on CDs, which is perhaps an outdated method but you could back them up on an external hard drive or memory card or something. Good luck!

  8. let me just say - you are great!

    As far as pictures...I would recommend an external hard drive. a little more expensive than the web, but a good option




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