Tuesday, April 29, 2008


XBOX Wife Ten Things Tuesday

Thanks for coming here today! It's been a madhouse of activity around the Brownstone household, and there hasn't been a lot of time for blog reading or writing.
I promise to be back to all aspects of blogging before too long...thanks for still visiting!!!

  1. Mr. Brownstone made breakfast for Tornado and Twister this morning ~ bacon, eggs...all of it!
  2. Tornado and Twister made it in bed by bedtime last night with no fussing ~ the results this morning were evident!
  3. I am not lacking for activities to keep my busy today! :)
  4. It is gorgeous around here! In just two weeks time, our huge oak trees went from having no leaves to being completely covered with beautiful green leaves. It feels so happy!
  5. I think the squirrels are gone, and we did not have to pay to have them trapped or removed!
  6. The repairs for all the damage they caused are almost complete ~ the outside of the house looks awesome with all new trim!
  7. Only a few parents get to go on the field trip for Twister's grade level tomorrow. I was one of the parents chosen to go with them! It will be such a fun day at the Children's Theatre!
  8. We have an exciting weekend ahead for church! Friday and Saturday is the Ladies' Retreat, and Sunday is the Children's Ministry Kick-off!
  9. Though there are a million and one things to do around here, my mind is not overly stressed or distracted. I feel at peace today.
  10. My siblings rock! I feel so very blessed by each one of them and their families!
Now go make a list of your ten things, and come back here to link! Have a blessed day!

Ten Things Tuesday Participants
1. Michelle
2. Jennifer
3. Lisa Beth
4. Rosheeda
5. Jill
6. Emily
7. Nikki
8. Chandra
9. mzzterry
10. Danna
11. Andria
12. JenniJ
13. Jayne

Learn more about Ten Things Tuesday here.

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Tuesday, April 22, 2008


XBOX Wife Ten Things Tuesday

This past Sunday, our preacher had all of us get out our cell phones in the middle of church and hold them high above our heads.
There was an audible wave of chatter throughout the auditorium. We all looked at each other as we obliged, all the time giggling, smiling, and wondering where on earth this might be headed. He had told us the week before to bring our cell phones...even though he had to know that we'd likely have them with us anyway. As we all held the phones above our heads, many people razzing our preacher by lighting them up and waving them back and forth as if at a rock concert, he told us to turn them to the "on" position. And in his turn to razz us, he actually told us to at least pretend like we were turning them on since we were ~ of course ~ in church, and they should have been in the "off" position. With phones ringing and buzzing everywhere, we all finally got our phones turned on and then set to vibrate, also at his request ~ one that would prove to be wise by the time all was said and done. Next, he asked us to text a message to someone. It could be anyone. The laughter was loud and clear. Texting??? He wanted us to text someone? Most of the people holding up the phones were not really a part of the texting generation, myself included! He told us that it was OK if it took awhile...he had a message from God's word for us to share: "Yet I will rejoice in the Lord."

This message came from Habakkuk. If you aren't familiar with Habakkuk, I encourage you to go and read it. You will find it in the Old Testament between Nahum and Zephaniah. It's a short book...only three little chapters. It might take you five minutes to read the whole thing. Maybe. If you read slowly. To give you the gist, though, Habakkuk is not necessarily a happy book of the Bible. It begins with Habakkuk crying out to the Lord ~ questioning Him, complaining to Him...almost accusing Him of not listening. He is frustrated! Maybe even angry. The wicked are prevailing, and Habakkuk is having to watch all of the injustice. The Lord then answers him, and it just might not be the answer for which old Habakkuk was looking. He tells Habakkuk,
"I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told" and cautions Habakkuk to watch as He raises up a ruthless people and brings them powerfully to battle.

And what does Habakkuk do? He complains to the Lord again, asking, "Why do you tolerate the treacherous? Why are you silent when the wicked swallow up those more righteous than themselves?" Then the Lord answers Habakkuk in Chapter Two by telling him that the time will come for the wicked to fall. He tells him, "For the revelation awaits an appointed time;
it speaks of the end and will not prove false. Though it linger, wait for it; it will certainly come and will not delay. See, he is puffed up; his desires are not upright - but the righteous will live by his faith..." He goes on to say, "For the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea." And then regarding those "puffed up" with "desires not upright", He says, "You will be filled with shame instead of glory. Now it is your turn! Drink and be exposed! The cup from the LORD's right hand is coming around to you, and disgrace will cover your glory." Then comes one of my favorite verses in the Bible..."But the LORD is in His holy temple; let all the earth be silent before Him." Can you even begin to imagine what that will be like? ALL THE EARTH will be silent. The animals, the winds, the waters, the people... What a glorious moment it will be when we are all in such awe of our Creator that there will be complete and total silence!

Finally, we come to Habakkuk's prayer in Chapter Three. In it, he praises and recognizes the power of God, saying, "His splendor was like the sunrise;
rays flashed from His hand, where His power was hidden." He talks of things of which he has complained...plague, pestilence, distress, anguish, wrath, famine... And then comes THE verse. Habakkuk 3:18 says, "Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will be joyful in God my Savior." Notice this, Friends ~ "YET I will rejoice in the LORD..." He does not say "IF the Lord will make it easy for me, then I will rejoice in Him." He says "yet". He also could have said, "Though there has been famine and plague, nonetheless I will rejoice in the Lord." Another way to say it would have been, "Though the wicked are triumphant in battle, even still I will rejoice in the Lord." Or he could have said, "On top of everything else ~ the distress, the anguish ~ I will rejoice in the Lord!"

Now back to the texting... We were instructed to text
"Yet I will rejoice in the Lord" to whomever we wished, just making sure that we included the word "yet". Our preacher's phone immediately started vibrating with texts sent from his congregation. In the middle of trying to text my siblings, their spouses, my parents, all of my in-laws, and my friends, my phone started vibrating with texts from friends hearing the same sermon. [Remember, I am not a part of "Generation Text", so some could be considered (much) faster texters!] Mr. Brownstone's and my favorite, of course, came from Lurch-Lady as she informed us that "Yeti will rejoice in the Lord." She did previously live on a frozen tundra ~ maybe she knows him??? Good for the Yeti, though...even the Abominable Snowman needs to rejoice in the Lord!

After finally getting the message sent to our loved ones, my phone started vibrating again ~ a message from a brother-in-law asking if he was supposed to be the recipient of what seemed like the continuation of a conversation to him, more messages from friends, and then came the message that was the kicker of them all... It was from one of my siblings, and it said, "Thanks. Momo wasn't rejoicing too much when Twister fell in the pool ten minutes before church this morning." Now to give you some background, "Momo" is my mom's grandma name, and Tornado and Twister had spent the night with my parents on Saturday night. :) Remember when I said that putting the phones on vibrate was wise? Of course, I had to text back, "No! Really?" Upon which I received, "Oh yeah. Twister was 'cleaning' the pool."

I couldn't help but relate the message of Habakkuk to "Ten Things Tuesday". This whole exercise each week (or each day if you're like me) is to help us find things for which to be thankful...even when it's not easy! God never told us that life would be perfect, but we are called to rejoice in Him!

Here is my "YET I" list for today...

  1. Twister fell into the pool fully clothed before church...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that my child has a spirit of adventure.
  2. My allergies and asthma have really worn me down for the past couple of weeks to the point of being pretty worthless when it comes to blogging, housework, or anything requiring focus or energy...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that allergies are seasonal, and they are also controllable.
  3. Squirrels have demolished a portion of our home...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that my children take delight in seeing the wildlife refuge in our front yard! (squirrels, lizards, blue jays, cardinals...)
  4. The repairs will be costly...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that the timing falls in line with the receipt of our tax return.
  5. I have been a terrible blogging friend the past ten days or so by not visiting sites or reciprocating comments...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that y'all have been so forgiving of this and you continue to visit.
  6. We do not get to see some of our siblings very often...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that we get to speak often and the closeness and love we feel for each other is evident in every conversation.
  7. Mr. Brownstone's "check engine" light is on...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that we have the means at the moment to have the car repaired ~ not to mention that we have two reliable vehicles.
  8. I haven't made even a small dent in what I need to accomplish for the day...YET I will rejoice in the LORD because I have such wonderful friends to distract me with phone calls!!! (An easy choice to make!)
  9. Our house is a complete and total wreck right now...YET I will rejoice in the LORD that our children have been able to participate in things that keep us busy on the weekends and during the week.
  10. And YET I will rejoice in the LORD that even though we had things we needed to accomplish, Mr. Brownstone and I were able to take time out and put domestic tasks aside to make time for one another this weekend. What a wonderful blessing!
I encourage each of you to make your "YET I" list, too; then come here and post your link so we can all share in it!

Ten Things Tuesday Participants
1. Rosheeda
2. Chandra
3. Jason
4. Dyane
5. Jennifer
6. shana
7. Jill
8. mzzterry
9. Emily
10. Danna
11. Jason B
12. Darrah
13. jen
14. Joy B.

Learn more about Ten Things Tuesday here.

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Thursday, April 17, 2008


I love to plan parties! If I had known in college that it was an actual job for which you can be hired, then "Bash By Brownstone" would be a swinging operation! Though I believe that doors to job opportunities never completely close, things do change when you have children. For the moment, it is totally satisfying to create awesome parties for Tornado and Twister...and anyone else that will allow me to have input for their parties! The planning, the decorating, the coordinating, the partying...I love all of it!

For this Seventh Edition Thursday Thirteen list, I'm sharing with you the themes of some of my best work!

Thirteen Parties I've Planned!
  1. Raggedy Ann and Andy
  2. The Jungle
  3. Princesses and Knights
  4. A 50's Drive-In and Diner
  5. Backyard Water Park Summer Bash
  6. Peter Pan: An Evening at the Theatre
  7. The 70's
  8. Spa Retreat
  9. Hawaiian Luau
  10. Campout
  11. Wizard of Oz
  12. Christmas
  13. Bachelorette Party: Viva Las Vegas!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Last week, a LOT of you left comments and emails wanting to know how I met Billy Idol. That story will be coming soon! I will also blog (in a separate post, of course) about the party listed above that receives the most attention in the comments!

Thursday Thirteen Participants
1. Jeanine
2. Jennifer
3. pussreboots
4. Lilibeth
5. Nicole
6. Cindy Swanson

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here

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Tuesday, April 15, 2008


I was recently tagged...twice! Being able to make a great little word play for the title inspired me to answer both tags in one post.

Of course, it wasn't hard for me because I generally have "a lot of ideas ~ extraordinary ideas" for that matter. With my "unique brilliance" and "sharp-mindedness" combined with "determination" and "high abilities", I know that my "forward thinking" must be so "difficult for you to fathom". I just have that special gift of "thinking differently from others".

Oh, yes...I am THAT GOOD, people.
But...the other shoe always has to drop...right?

I'm going to be "brave" here, and share with you what I'm wearing on that other foot...
Do not give this "homely" girl any props. I "hardly become angry unless provoked", but I simply "do not appreciate praises". Beware if you want to offer me a compliment because my reaction might be "unpredictable". "I'm really not able to control my emotions" (which tend to be "deep, just like my love"), and I can be a bit "stubborn and hard hearted". This personality flaw makes me "uncertain in relationships", but that's OK because I really "love to be alone", which works well for someone who is "secretive". Watch out, though, because secretive or not, I really "know how to dig out YOUR secrets". I can be "inquisitive" like that. I have an "if there is a will, there is a way" kind of attitude. I'm "patient, determined, and I never give up" ~ "always thinking, always motivating myself" to get to the bottom of YOU. After all, I do have a "fine and strong clairvoyance".

You really shouldn't fear because being true to the nature of a "romantic", I'm "trustworthy, honest, and a great secret-keeper". This is probably because I'm "generous", and I'm also a "less talkative" sort of girl, even though some might say that I'm "dynamic in personality, amiable, and even high-spirited".

And for the record...
I may be "homely", but I'm also "hardworking" and "well-built and tough".
Just like a Ford truck.

Dette at Dance of Motherhood tagged me for the "Twelve Months of Personality" meme. Below is my birth month. See if it didn't just hit the nail on the head...

NOVEMBER: Has a lot of ideas. Difficult to fathom. Thinks forward. Unique and brilliant. Extraordinary ideas. Sharp thinking. Fine and strong clairvoyance. Dynamic in personality. Secretive. Inquisitive. Knows how to dig secrets. Always thinking. Less talkative but amiable. Can become good doctors.Brave and generous. Patient. Stubborn and hard-hearted. If there is a will, there is a way. Determined. Never give up. Hardly becomes angry unless provoked. Loves to be alone. Thinks differently from others. Sharp-minded. Motivates oneself. Does not appreciate praises. High-spirited. Well-built and tough. Deep love and emotions. Romantic. Uncertain in relationships. Homely. Hardworking. High abilities. Trustworthy. Honest and keeps secrets. Not able to control emotions. Unpredictable.


  1. Mention the person who tagged you, and create a link back to them.
  2. Copy and paste the traits for all the twelve months, OR feel free to use the link provided here.
  3. Pick your month of birth.
  4. Highlight the traits that apply to you.
  5. Tag 12 people, and let them know by visiting their blogs and leaving them a comment.***
  6. Let the person who tagged you know when your post is available to view!
And now I'm tagging twelve people that I've either never tagged, or haven't tagged in a long while...
  1. Susan at West Of Mars -- the Meet and Greet
  2. Mercedes at Mercedes' World
  3. Nicole at The Journey Begins With One Step
  4. Jenn at Texas Wife and Mom
  5. Jill at Perfectly Parks
  6. Rosheeda at Ride-or-Die
  7. Dyane at A Family In Transition
  8. Vicki at The Brady Bunch
  9. Jennifer at Threadbare Gypsy Soul
  10. Skelty at Bloggy McBloggerson
  11. Jamie at The Life Of Molly And Sarah
  12. Jen at Wade's World
***I've been sick all day and am unfortunately still suffering from insomnia. I'd love to comment for the tags now, but it's just not happening tonight, folks! So...if you see this before I leave a comment letting you know that you've been tagged, then my humble and sincere apologies. It will be a bit before that can be completed!

And since I promised "two-fer" one...

I was also tagged by e-Mom at Chrysalis for the "What Punctuation Mark Are You?" quiz. Following are the results:

You Are A Comma

  • You are open minded and extremely optimistic.
  • You enjoy almost all facets of life.
  • You can find the good in almost anything.
  • You keep yourself busy with tons of friends, activities, and interests.
  • You find it hard to turn down an opportunity, even if you are pressed for time.
  • Your friends find you fascinating, charming, and easy to talk to. (But with so many competing interests, your friends do feel like you hardly have time for them.)
  • You excel in: Inspiring people
  • You get along best with: The Question Mark
What Punctuation Mark Are You?

There were no instructions to tag anyone on this one, so I'm tagging anybody that wants to play. If you do decide to join in the fun, come back here and leave a comment, so I can go see what kind of punctuation mark defines YOU!

Thanks for reading all the way to the bottom of this post! I'd like to think my friends would mostly agree with the comma traits, and that they'll vouch for me that the whole first part of this post was written with great sarcasm and wit.

Because of course you must know by now...
I have unique brilliance and a sharp mind. :)


XBOX Wife Ten Things Tuesday

Dear Thankful Friends,

I am sick today with a whole mess of allergies that have settled in my chest. Please pray that my body will be able to fight this off before it ends up becoming something worse. I promise to come back and post a thankful list at some point today, but I need some rest first. However...I'm going ahead and opening up the link for all of you, so feel free to link back to your blog! I can't wait to check them all out later. It's one of my favorite things to do during the week because it's so uplifting!

Thanks so much in advance for your prayers!


(P.S. Don't forget to come check out my thankful list later today! It will be added to this same post.)

Updated at 12:12 pm to add my "ten things"!

  1. WOW! I am so blessed to come here and read your comments from this morning. Thank you for your prayers and sweet words. This blogging community rocks!
  2. And speaking of blessings...aren't we blessed that God gave man the knowledge to create medicines that can make us feel better!?!!
  3. The sunlight is spilling in every window, and it fills my heart with joy!
  4. I am so thankful that my siblings, siblings-in-law, Mr. Brownstone, and myself are not "just family"...we are all friends ~ genuine, true friends.
  5. And speaking of genuine, true friends...one of my dearest friends brought me a Diet Coke with easy ice, cherry syrup, vanilla syrup, and real cherries from Sonic this morning because she knew I was feeling yucky...
  6. That's not to mention the Sausage, Egg, and Cheese Burrito she threw in for good measure...
  7. OR the fact that another one of my dearest friends rang our second line (while the first friend was telling me she was coming) to ask me the same thing! (Maybe I should have taken her up on a second cup of sheer delight!)
  8. My kids are both healthy right now, and that makes me soooo happy!
  9. It is quiet today...with the exception of the occasional pick-up game of squirrel basketball in the attic.
  10. Some friends of mine got a better report from their child's doctor than they were expecting this morning. I'm thankful that a virus can (simply??) run its course, but please add "D" to your prayers because a virus never SEEMS simple when you're the one that has it (OR when it's one of your kids)!!
Ten Things Tuesday Participants
1. Dallas
2. Dyane
3. Emily
4. Darrah
5. Chandra
6. mzzterry
7. Mercedes
8. Adrian
9. Rosheeda
10. We are THAT family
11. Amanda
12. Jennifer
13. Nikki
14. Jill
15. Joy
16. Danna
17. Michelle
18. JenniJ
19. Jen
20. Amy
21. David
22. Jason
23. Jamie
24. Andria

Learn more about Ten Things Tuesday here.

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Sunday, April 13, 2008


Ten days ago, Jayne at The Clock Is Ticking tagged me for the "Seven Random Things" meme. I think memes can be fun because they tell you a lot about the person. However...before "meeting" Jayne, I had already participated in this same meme; and currently, I am working on a "100 Things About Me" list to honor the 100th post tradition. (Don't hold your breath, though ~ it is much harder than you'd think. It might take all year to complete!) Considering these two facts, it might be just a bit redundant for me to list seven random things about myself. Trust me, I am not that interesting! (Even though y'all are all secretly wondering how on earth I met Billy Idol!)

To keep things interesting, I went to the ones that know and love me best. I asked Tornado, Twister, and Mr. Brownstone to make a random list of random things about me. Of course, one or two items receive a quick and definitive VETO...by me. There are still some things a girl has to keep secret!

Without further adieu, here are "Seven Random Things About Mrs. Brownstone...by 'The Rest of the Brownstones' aka 'Two Babes and a Babe'!"

  1. "Sometimes you bust out dancing. Well, not sometimes ~ you actually do it a LOT! You shake your bootie, and your dancing is bad!"
    ~ Tornado

  2. "Sometimes when you're in the car, you just bust out singing. You take a breath every few words, but you are a really, REALLY good singer!"
    ~ Twister

  3. "It takes you a really long time to pick out clothes when we're shopping. Like when we went to Target to buy food the other day, we were there for three hours. We spent two of those hours shopping for your one shirt."
    ~ Tornado

  4. "You get freaked out when people talk about 'Nightmare on Elm Street'. One time we were driving in the car, and we passed by Elm Street; and we were all teasing you about it. We said, 'Hey, Dad bought a house on Elm Street!' All of us were laughing, and you said, 'That's not EVEN funny!'"
    ~ Tornado

  5. "Every time you get a new pair of sunglasses you break them or lose them. You always keep 'em on your head."
    ~ Twister

  6. "Your deodorant smells like coconut. I like it. It smells yummy!"
    ~ Twister

  7. "You don't like black cats crossing in front of you're while driving. You're a 'scaredy'."
    ~ Mr. Brownstone
In the spirit of carrying on this meme, here are the rules:
  1. Link to the person who tagged you.
  2. Post the rules in your blog entry.
  3. Share 7 random, or weird, facts about yourself.
  4. Tag 7 random people at the end of the post, linking to them.
  5. Leave a comment on their blog so that they know they’ve been tagged. ***
So...in "random" order, I am tagging some people that I've never tagged before for a meme, who are all new friends from "Ten Things Tuesday", and who left comments for me on Tuesday! (Thanks, y'all!) They are as follows:

  1. Nikki at The Hill-Billies
  2. Terry at Mzzterry
  3. Shana at Easton and Lexi
  4. Amanda at Livin' On Tulsa Time
  5. Chandra at View From My Window
  6. Danna at Ramsey Five
  7. Michelle at Being A Star

Y'all are now "It"! (Or what that be "Its"?) I am looking forward to finding out more about y'all! I need to toss in the disclaimer here, however, that meme participation is optional and strictly voluntary. If it's not your thing, there is no pressure! And really, I was just supposed to tag seven people, but if anyone else would like to play along, please come leave a comment here letting me know that you joined in the fun!

***We're walking out the door to a party, so if you see this before I leave a comment letting you know that you've been tagged, then my humble and sincere apologies. It will be a bit before that can be completed!

Thursday, April 10, 2008


Some of these might make you green with envy...
And some of them might make you wish you had been a fly on the wall!

Below you will find my Sixth Edition Thursday Thirteen list. It is in no particular order. All met the criteria in random ways and in random places...definitely not all in ways that you might expect. That's all I'm saying for now, but feel free to ask questions in the comments. :)

Thirteen Famous People I've Met!
  1. Billy Idol
  2. Michael W. Smith
  3. Paul Overstreet
  4. Sheryl Swoopes
  5. Jim Jeffcoat
  6. Herschel Walker
  7. Shaquille O'Neal
  8. Davis Love III
  9. Delirious
  10. Rachael Ray
  11. Donald Rumsfeld
  12. Nelson Coates
  13. Rusty Greer

Just in case you aren't familiar with someone, links are provided for you to meet all of my old friends!

Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


If you are a regular commenter on this blog, then you might have noticed that it has taken me a bit longer to respond to you this past week. Normally, I like to respond to people as soon as possible, but your kind words have really piled up in the "in box" since last week, and for that I apologize.

Please know that it is not that I don't value what you have to say. And it is certainly not that I do not enjoy visiting your blogs...because I do ~ immensely. There are so many bright, funny people in this crazy little bloggy world! And for those of you that have literally been with me since the beginning, I can assure you that it is not another lung obstruction!

Any and all delays in blogging and comment returns are caused by my little friend. Her name is "Insomnia". Have you met her? She can be a bit pesky. She often comes to visit uninvited. She also hangs around long after you've asked her to leave. She jumps into the middle of any given situation, insisting to be a part of it...whether you want her there or not.

Oh, yes, little Insomnia. She barged in for a visit two weeks ago when Twister was ill with a severe earache. It was partly my fault. I invited her in for coffee that first night, needing to be awake to hold the heating pad on Twister's ear. We had a nice visit. I welcomed her in with open arms since I could not invite over her sister "Sleep". Sleep doesn't care for coffee anyway. The second night, I really wanted Insomnia to leave; but with Twister still in pain, I didn't force her. She was trying to be so helpful...I didn't want to hurt her feelings...BIG mistake. She doesn't really understand the concept of boundaries ~ she's an "open door policy" kind of girl. She has been hanging around for TWO weeks!! I've asked her to leave. I've BEGGED her to leave. I've even tried to FORCE her to leave. Yet, she's brought a suitcase or two with her. I'm beginning to seriously question our friendship.

And for the record, she and her sister Sleep must not get along because Sleep leaves the room the minute Insomnia pokes in her head.

Needless to say, I have acquired some sleep debt. Not. Fun. It is taking more time to catch up than it did to fall behind in the first place. According to Wikipedia, "The
National Sleep Foundation in the United States maintains that eight to nine hours of sleep for adult humans is optimal and that sufficient sleep benefits alertness, memory and problem solving, and overall health, as well as reducing the risk of accidents." It also says that "cognitive performance declines with fewer than eight hours of sleep."

So there you have it. My cognitive performance has declined. My alert level is down. I cannot problem solve and have poor memory about the most basic things. My health is declining, and I'm at risk of an accident. YIKES! These are not good things. Insomnia is really not turning out to be as good of a friend as I thought.

Now that you know what is NOT working-for-me, you can only assume what would be...what should be...working-for-me. If I could just get the pesky sister out the door!

For some really great tips on sleep, click HERE. These folks have made a really great list of thirty-three secrets to a good night's sleep. Some of them are obvious ~ like avoid caffeine ~ and some of them not so obvious ~ like learn how to use the Emotional Freedom Technique. (I had not heard of it either!)


and every other day, too!

To see what is working for other people, be sure and visit Shannon over at Rocks In My Dryer. Her Works-For-Me Wednesday carnival...well, it rocks!


WHY??? For the love of pete, WHY?

We've all asked the question. We've all wondered the answer. The joke is so old, I'm sure that our grandparents told it when they were kids. In fact, my grandma told it to Tornado and Twister the last time we saw her! Though there are many different variations, she still prefers the original answer..."to get to the other side". (She was so proud of herself for telling it ~ I can still see her sparkly blue eyes and her matter-of-fact grin.)

To find a suitable answer to this question, or fourteen answers rather, you should check out at the library, or purchase:

It's a brilliant book in which fourteen different children's book illustrators, including two of my personal favorites Mo Willems and David Shannon, each have a two-page spread to answer this question. The different styles of the illustrators are evident, and it's sure to bring a smile to all who read it.

If you've already read this book, or if you read it in the future, I would love for you to leave a comment telling the Brownstone family which is your favorite answer to "Why did the chicken cross the road?"

For more
visit Mercedes
at Mercedes Rocks!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


XBOX Wife Ten Things Tuesday

  1. This morning I am tired!! "You're thankful about that," you ask? Yes! I'm tired because I got home late and got in bed late because we had an awesome Children's Ministry Committee meeting at our church last night.
  2. This means that our church is growing ~ a 40% increase in children in over the last 5 years!
  3. Some of my closest friends serve on the same committee, and it's such a blessing to be doing this together.
  4. I am thrilled about a specific task of which I'll be organizing...kids for missions!
  5. As I look outside, the thunderstorms rolling in are evident. I love thunderstorms!
  6. I have things to occupy my time all day long today, reminding me that I have a sweet family of whom to take care. Washing their dirty laundry is just one of the ways I can let them know how much I love them! :)
  7. There is laundry to do! "WHAT?" You ask this question with force and in an "are-you-crazy" voice. Yes, I am thankful for that laundry! It means that we have enough clothing to get us through more than a day or two. I'll admit...this is one that I have to find reasons to be thankful.
  8. I have a sticker right smack dab in the bottom center of my foot! I KNOW...it HURTS! But it also reminds me that my toes are not tingling today. Maybe I'll share the rest of that story on another day.
  9. In an hour or so, I get to spend some quality time with one of my greatest friends Lurch-Lady! :)
  10. I am so thankful for all of you that are reading this! Ten years ago, I would have never imagined all the possibilities that the world wide web has allowed!
What are YOU thankful for today?

Look for more information about a Ten Things Tuesday blogroll soon! It will be here before you know it!

Ten Things Tuesday Participants
1. Nikki
2. mzzterry
3. Dyane
4. Liza\'s Eyeview
5. Shana
6. Rosheeda
7. Jennifer
8. Chandra
9. Jill
10. Jen
11. Jamie
12. Jason
13. Danna
14. Jayne
15. Vicki
16. Jenni J
17. Michelle
18. Amanda

Learn more about Ten Things Tuesday here.

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Monday, April 7, 2008


I am making an earnest plea for help! There are literally hundreds and hundreds of recipes in my box but meal planning for the week just does not seem to be working. The only things that are sounding good are the calorie and fat laden recipes. This is NOT what we need to be eating!

In the spirit of Menu Plan Monday...I would like to do a little reversing today. If you have a really great low fat, low calorie recipe, would you please post a link for it in the comments? If you don't have a link to your recipe, then I'd be ever so grateful if you'd post the actual recipe in the comments! Weight Watcher recipes are of particular interest, and if you have the points, even better! However, I am desperate for any and all healthy recipes that you can offer!

Thanks so much in advance for your help ~ I know that I can count on y'all to help with this! There are a LOT of fabulous virtual chefs!

As always, thank you to Laura at I'm An Organizing Junkie
for hosting this fabulous recipe carnival each week!

Obviously, you're not finding any great recipes here today,
but you can definitely find some by clicking the graphic!

For recipes from the Brownstone kitchen, click here.
(I actually do have some...just not today!)

Sunday, April 6, 2008


This week Mercedes at Mercedes Rocks has asked us to post soup recipes for

Now don't get me wrong...I love a good soup as much as the next girl, but when the weather starts getting warm, a hot soup just does not sound quite as tasty! What's a girl to do?

If you've read through my blog, then you know that I love blueberries because there is a whole post dedicated to blueberry recipes! The blueberry is also the answer to my soup dilemma. This delightful little fruit happens to be the key ingredient in a delicious chilled soup! Just as a bowl of hot, steamy soup can warm you up on a cold, blustery night...a bowl of this soup is the perfect thing to cool you down on a warm Summer evening. (You know we don't have Spring here in the South!)

Please enjoy another recipe from my mom's recipe box!

Chilled Blueberry Soup

3 cups water

1 quart fresh blueberries

¾ cup granulated sugar
ground cinnamon, to taste
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons cold water
sour cream or yogurt, optional garnish (I prefer vanilla yogurt.)
mint leaves, optional garnish

In a saucepan, bring water to a boil. In the meantime, remove stems from blueberries, then rinse and drain. Add blueberries, sugar, and cinnamon to water. Simmer for several minutes, stirring to dissolve sugar. (It is optional to puree the mixture in a blender at this point.) Set aside.In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch and cold water to make paste. Stir it into the warm berry mixture, and bring to another boil. Let cool; then cover, and refrigerate for several hours.

Serve chilled. If desired, top each bowl with a tablespoon of sour cream or yogurt. You may also sprinkle with additional cinnamon, and/or decorate with mint leaves.


For other great cookie recipes, click the graphic!

For other great recipes from the kitchen of Mrs. Brownstone (and my mom!), click here!

Saturday, April 5, 2008


You will be amazed by what you will see in the following videos!

The first video is long ~ eight and half minutes ~ but it's the one all of the Brownstones preferred. If you suffer from ADD, or if you're the type that needs more immediate gratification, or even if you're simply in a hurry, then by all means skip to the second video. It's the same video, but it has been sped up and put to music. In my opinion, it loses some of the deliberation that is evident in the first video, and the quality is not as good because the camera appears to shake; but that being said...you will get the gist. The third video is slightly different. It's not quite as amazing as the first, but it's only thirty seconds. It also gives you a completely different view of what is happening in the videos.

This one /\ /\ /\ is longer, but better.

What to choose, what to choose... (I'd choose both!)

This one \/ \/ \/ is not quite as good, but it's shorter.

This \/ \/ \/ is a different elephant painting a different picture, but it shows more of the actual elephant than just the trunk!

If only someone had been throwing peanuts... We sat around the computer monitor with our mouths hanging open! They really are rather unbelievable! I did some investigating, however, and the videos are authentic. The Leonardo da Vinci channeling elephants are part of the Asian Elephant Art and Conservation Project, a non-profit organization based out of New York City. The elephants reside in Bali, Borobudur, Cambodia, India, and Thailand, as well as one in the United States. You can read more about them by clicking the above link. You can also purchase various items, including the artwork.

Judging by the artwork, I think that the elephant in the first and second video is an eight-year-old female, living in Thailand, named Hong. She can paint two things...an elephant holding a flower and the Thai flag. A similar painting to the one in the video recently sold for $500.00!!! The elephant in the third video is definitely a five-year-old male, living in Thailand, named Paya. His specialty is creating elephant heads!

Heard from the heckle-free peanut gallery:

  • "Y'all come look at this! This is amazing!!!" ~ Mrs. Brownstone
  • "LOOK! He's painting 'hisself', Mom!" ~ Twister, after simply watching (with great perception) the first brush stroke.
  • "Now that picture's a million bucks!" ~ Tornado
  • "The control in his trunk is showing incredible dexterity!" ~ Mr. Brownstone
What did you hear in your peanut gallery?

Friday, April 4, 2008


Oh, the relatives! What would we do without them? You either gotta love 'em...or you can laugh at them!

This week Mad Kane is giving us all the opportunity to laugh! Check out her Limerick and Haiku prompt over at
Mad Kane's Humor Blog. The topic is "relatives" ~ now who could resist that? Below you will find my efforts!

A little limerick for you:

I once had a cousin named "Slats",
Who did not consume many fats...

But his sister Bernita?

Well, she liked to eat-a!

So together they looked like
"The Sprats".

And now the haiku:

Things One, Two, and Three ~
What great memories I have
'Cause I was the boss!

Don't forget...
It's a mad, mad, mad, mad world!

Thursday, April 3, 2008


It's been a looooong week in the Brownstone household, so I am foregoing what I had planned for my Fifth Edition of Thursday Thirteen, and giving a loud shout out to Dette at Dance of Motherhood for this great Thursday Thirteen idea! She did it last week, and it was awesome! And as far as my great plans for this week? You'll just have to wait until next week!

Thirteen Things About Me...In The Moment!
  1. I AM...very, very tired today! Tornado and Twister have both been sick and have not sleeping at night!
  2. I WANT...two things ~ 1) for my babies to feel better, and 2) a new washer and dryer. OK, technically that's three things. Or is it four if I'm hoping that both of my kids feel better soon?
  3. I HAVE...wonderful ladies at my church that are amazing spiritual mentors, as well as mentors for everyday life.
  4. I WISH...that everyone who visited my blog would comment!!! :) Comments are fun to give and to get!
  5. I HATE...living on a budget! But at the same time...I'm so glad we do it.
  6. I FEAR...that I will never catch up on our laundry!
  7. I REGRET...not finding out about blogging sooner!! It's a fantastic stress relief.
  8. I LOVE...Mr. Brownstone! (<3 sigh!) I am so blessed to have such an incredible husband. I should tell him that more often than I do... I love my kids, too! They are bring me so much joy!
  9. I ALWAYS...make a list each day of ten things for which I'm thankful! (Check my Tuesday blog entries, and join me!)
  10. I AM NOT...loving the squirrels that have demolished our house trim.
  11. I DANCE...to make my kids laugh, but I totally rock at Dance Dance Revolution. Go figure!
  12. I CRY...a LOT these days ~ when I'm happy, when I'm sad, when I'm inspired, when I'm angry, when I'm tired ~ sometimes at the oddest times and sometimes just because.
  13. I SING...in my head all the time, under my breath most of the time, and very loudly in my car.
Get the Thursday Thirteen code here!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!