Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Blonde Moment Puzzle in the Hodgepodge

Today we have a one-hour delay for the dusting of snow we got overnight. I am going to let myself have 18 minutes to write my answers, so--lucky you-I have to be abbreviated. 

1. It's been said that one small positive thought in the morning can change your whole day?  Do you think that's true? Do you find that an easy exercise most mornings? What's something positive you told yourself this morning? If you missed that boat, what's something positive you could tell yourself tomorrow?

Yes, I believe that. It's not always easy when I start every day with the aches and pains of old age, but generally I look at a day as a clean slate. 

If a negative thought is hard to nip, and I don't want to stay there, I force myself to say, "Rejoice, for your name is written in the Lamb's Book of Life."  If I can find NO other good thought, THAT one picks me up.  But usually I look forward to making a fresh start as I sip my coffee and talk to God.

 2. There will be karaoke at the next party you attend...are you in? Or will you be faking a sore throat?

That all depends on the company, my mood, and the song choices available.  I can sing hymns and 80s music without much thought. Does anyone sing "How Great Thou Art" on karaoke night? 

3. January 29th is National Puzzle Day...what's something you've found puzzling lately?

On Monday, I was taking my boy to school and was sitting at a light that's a stone's throw from the college on the other side of his school. At this light was a long line, presumably students' cars heading for college.  We watched a small green Honda pull out of the line, attempt to go around on the shoulder to cut through to the long driveway at the liquor store on the corner.  But the driver  (blonde and 18) slipped in the icy slush and slid down the embankment of the cornfield adjacent to the driveway.  I was puzzled as to how she figured her little car would even plow through a foot of roadside slush. 

FYI, after dropping my son off, I came back and offered her help, let her sit with me till cops came, 
and stayed with her till real help arrived. The trooper said that cut-through is private property and would be a $110 fine. 

4. Jigsaw, crossword, acrostic, logic, sudoku, word search...what's your favorite, and when did you last work one?

I'm not a fan of puzzles, but of those listed, a word search.  Last time I worked one? Can't recall. I should probably do more puzzling so that recalling comes more easily!  Actually, quilting is a type of puzzle--arranging and rearranging blocks that are mostly squares, triangles and rectangles . That's my favorite. 

5. Recently a writer by the name of Amy Glass ruffled feathers with a post she wrote saying she looks down on young women with husbands and kids and she's not sorry. Among other things she says women will be equal with men when we stop saying housework and real work are equally important.  You can read the whole piece by clicking here.

 I don't have time to read the article now, but reading that she looks down on people with husbands and kids, I have two immediate reactions:  1) She is terribly selfish.  2) She has been very hurt in the past by poor examples of husbands and father.  As for real work and housework, what is not "real" about housework? I mean , it'd be nice to have a fairy cleaning for me, and it'd be nice to collect a paycheck for keeping house, but you know what? I get satisfaction out of doing the work , the very real work involved of keeping house. I don't need to waste my energy contending with her notions. She doesn't know what she's missing.  

6. What's a product you've noticed in the grocery store that you'd like to try, but haven't yet?

Kumquats .  

7. The author, Charles Lutwidge Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll) was born this week back in 1832 (January 27th). Which character from his celebrated novel, Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, would you most like to meet, and why? Here's a link to the character list if you need help on this one.

I would like to meet Alice and ask her to share that magical shrinking potion. Sounds better than any diet beverage on the market.   When I peer into the looking glass in my bathroom each morning, I see a need for such a commodity. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

My time is up, but I leave you with one thought IF and ONLY if you are a Christian: Rejoice! Your name is written in the Lamb's Book of Life.   

If you are not a Christian, feel free to ask me what the Lamb's Book of Life is.  

Thursday, January 23, 2014

First Doll Quilt: Pretty in Pink

Back in November, I finished my first doll quilt and sent it in a shoebox, along with this doll and some other little goodies, via Operation Christmas Child, to a little girl who is known to God but not to me. 
I just kept imagining the same kind of joy she'd receive from playing with her baby doll as I did when 
I was a little girl. My grandmother made a baby doll quilt and a bed for one of my dollies. 
I loved it. 

Here is the first quilt I made.  It's approximately 16x18" finished.
Pattern: my own patchwork design
Machine pieced and quilted, Janome DC 1050

All snuggled up for her trip overseas.
I sure did have fun playing with decorative stitches!

                               Made with love by Zo....(personal ID blotted out).....2013

 Dear Baby, I'm so happy you are now in the arms of your new little mommy. I'm sure
you're both having loads of fun. 
Dear Little Girl, Please enjoy the quilt. It was a joy to make for you. God loves you.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Hodgepodge with a Chance of Sideburns

Strap on your gorgeous bowling shoes and play along with the Hodgepodge, won't you?

1. It was decided on Sunday the Denver Broncos will meet the Seattle Seahawks in this year's  Superbowl. So when was the last time you bowled? Not where you thought this question was going is it?  Do you like to bowl? Are you any good? 

Clever segue, there, Joyce.  If questions were bowling balls, you just rolled an unexpected strike on that one.   

Last time I went bowling, my baby was in the third grade, so that was three years ago. A bunch of the kids and us moms spontaneously went out after an early dismissal.   Do I like to bowl? Yes. Am I any good? Eh.  It usually takes me five or six frames to get in the groove (or should I say, to get OUT of the groove, AKA the gutter).  I'm not sure I trust my shoulder or my balance any more, considering I can't even throw a banana peel away without needing physical therapy as a result.  (In case you missed that story, check out my previous post.)

2.   Should sports stars be role models? 

Most of them are already role models, but not all are good ones.  I think every adult, regardless of profession, should be a good role model, but since we are a leisure-centric society with an inordinate
preoccupation with sports,  kids are going to gravitate to the athletes in the media to emulate.  Wouldn't it be loverly if stellar character were a prerequisite for stardom?

3. January is National Oatmeal month...are you a fan? How do you like your oats?

I love oatmeal.  The most common way I fix it is with raisins and brown sugar, microwaved. 
The best way,  though, is Baked Apple Oatmeal, which I just happen to plan on fixing tomorrow. 
It's really more of a dessert, thinly disguised as a nutritious breakfast. 

4. What is one book on your reading list for 2014?

The Book Thief.  I've heard all good things about it.

5. What would you like your future self to say to your present self?

Aren't you glad you obeyed God's voice in 2014 and became a post-abortion counselor? You helped to set captives free from guilt, shame, unforgiveness, and other demons. You are richer for having been vulnerable, courageous, and compassionate.  God gets all the praise. 

6. When scrolling through the TV guide, what is one movie title that makes you want to stop, grab the popcorn, and watch for a while?

The Notebook.

7. What are two style trends you hope never come back into fashion?

For men:  Long, thick, furry sideburns. (Honestly, I can't wait till thick, furry beards go back OUT of style. Ick!).   

For women:  Stirrup pants.  They make most of us look like bowling pins.  I'm just not a fan of clingy polyester--no way, no how. And I sure hope I never witness furry-sideburn men wearing stirrup pants. That was a style once upon a time, you know.  As Timon in The Lion King said, "Let's leave the past behind us!"

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

On Sunday, I had such a God-ordained surprise.  My plan was to drive to Silver Spring (between here and DC) ,  after church,  to purchase fabric from a man whose late wife had been a quilter for 25 years. Bless his heart, he was selling her entire studio.   I didn't want to go alone, but didn't know anyone on the spur of moment who might share my desire. When I got to church,  I  locked eyes and smiles with a woman named Susan who asked if I remembered her. Of course! We took our quilting class together in the fall. I didn't know if I'd ever link up with her again, but I had a burning desire to hear her testimony. All I knew is that she had grown up Jewish and became a Christian 10 years ago. 

She said she had started visiting churches after leaving her current church, and remembered the name of the one we attend and like.   

One thing led to another and I asked her if she was spontaneous and would she like to ride down with me to look at fabric? She's single and she offered to drive since my van's tire was low (again). 

I got to hear her testimony as we rode down to Silver Spring.  At first she said, "My testimony really isn't all that spectacular."  To which I had to pipe up and say, "Susan! You were dead and now you're alive! How much more spectacular can it be than that?"

She grew up Jewish, but going to synagogue was empty for her. Hebrew prayers meant nothing . Festivals were lackluster to her teenage spirit.  As an adult, she felt "something was missing." Two ladies in her office in 2004 had something she wanted: love, namely the love of Jesus. They witnessed to her; "I knew what they were doing and I assured them they were NOT going to make a Christian out of me!" 

One night Susan lost control at the wheel of her car and almost crashed, but was able to make it home somehow. The next morning at work, her co-worker said,"I was praying for you all night, but I wasn't sure why."  Susan was convinced that her life was about to change.  After a few visits to her co-worker's church, she gave her life to the Lord and was baptized by that same woman.   

Just had to share that rebirth story!

(Oh, and I ended up getting a lot of fabric, while she found none. The man wasn't much older than us, so I feel his wife died young--early 50's.  I choked back tears as I expressed sorrow for his loss, and assured him that I would use the fabric to bless children and other people with quilts. His wife had excellent taste and did splendid applique' quilting. I could feel his sadness and also his pride. Susan remarked when we left, "He was clearly of my tribe." We Jewish-blooded girls know what that means. If he doesn't know the Messiah, I hope and pray that he, like Susan, finds what (who) he is missing.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Daybook, or a Fall in Winter. 1.20.14

The Simple Woman's Daybook comes to my aid today, when my thoughts and life's events are as scattered as the rugs about the house. 


Outside my window... a stunning sunrise streaked with coral, lavender, powder blue and white. I took one look at it and thought I heard God say, "Look what I painted for you today, sweetheart."  He woke me up extra early so that I could admire it.

I am thinking how many times I've revised my resume' and  cover letter for a prospective employer.  I know it has to stand out and highlight my achievements, but every time I try, I just want to boast in God.  He prepared me from childhood with parents who valued the things I've passed on to my children and students. He gave me a husband who valued my work raising children and homeschooling them. My children's lives give testimony to those values and that work, but somehow I am supposed to promote myself, and it just feels icky. 

I am thankful... that I am healing fast from a nasty fall on Friday. Try not to laugh, but I was at the gas station, pumped my gas, got back in the van,  and decided to get back out and throw away my banana peel.
I opened the door, stepped out with my left foot, grabbed the peel (in a bag) with my right, and was going to quickly--in one fell swoop--toss the banana peel. But my right toe got stuck in the door frame area and I  lost my balance, fell headfirst into the metal gas pump, knees striking the concrete platform, right shoulder and hands taking the impact.  I went into the station, reported my fall, and got a couple bags of ice from the soda machine. Sat in my van, shaking, crying, wondering if I could drive home. By God's grace, yes, I could, and did.

In the kitchen...  I hear the boompa, swish-swish, boompa, swish-swish of my hardworking servant,  AKA the dishwasher. 

I am jammies (pink Henley style longjohn shirt, teal sweatpants), white socks, and black slippers. This is my holiday wear, and by that I mean today is MLK Jr Day.  No school, no reason to dress for the drive and the possibility of being seen in public.  Unless I fall again and end up at Patient First looking like this.

I am creating.. my first doll quilt of 2014. There will be a plethora of purple pinwheels. My hope is to make 7 doll quilts and buy dolls to go with them, pack them into shoeboxes and mail them with other little goodies for Operation Christmas Child.

I am with my boy today to pick up supplies for his science fair project. He is building a battery-powered motor.  

I am wondering... what the inside of my oldest son's new house looks like. They settle on Friday, and move on Saturday, Lord willing.  I am so excited for them in this new beginning as homeowners. I keep picturing my son pushing a lawnmower on a spring afternoon while my daughter-in-law rocks our future grandbaby to sleep in the nursery. No, this is not an announcement; this is merely a dream!

I am reading... . quilt books and magazines by the dozen.

I am hoping..we soon find a replacement vehicle at a good price. My van's front windows don't work, the driver's side tire won't hold air, even after being patched, the heater is slow to warm up, the gas gauge has long since been faulty, the battery died last week (at the same Exxon where I took my wicked fall).  My silver van--my old grey mare--she ain't what she used to be. She is me. (Or, to be grammatically correct, "She is I.") 

Good thing my hubby doesn't look for a newer model in the wife department. 

I am looking forward to...a nap. That's okay, isn't it? Oh, and being snowbound tomorrow because we might get 5" of snow!

I am learning that people are much more insecure than they appear. Everyone has a story, everyone has fears, everyone wants to be reached out to and noticed and loved.  This is the year I'm really going to start taking the initiative rather than waiting for others to get acquainted.

Around the house...are many things needing to be reorganized. Good thing I enjoy setting up systems, huh?  Too bad they don't maintain themselves.

I am pondering... God's brilliance in designing a certain plant called arnica, which grows in Europe and is what mountain goats eat when they've injured themselves. Arnica reduces inflammation and discoloration from bruising ; I had not heard of it until Saturday when my mom called and told me of her German friend who gave her Arnicare Gel (homeopathic cream).  My mom brought me some and all I can say is it worked so well that I didn't need ibuprofen for the rest of the day.  

A favorite quote for today... actually is a just a little song made up and sung to me by one of my daughter's darling first graders. Picture a little bronze-faced boy with dreadlocks and a sweet voice singing this: 

I like school.

I like school. 

It's so fun to come to school.

 We play outside and have some fun.

 We play inside and learn in Ms. Z's class.

School is so much fun.

One of my favorite things... is being hugged. 

A few plans for the rest of the week:  

  • delivering a baby....quilt . (Ha! You thought I'd become a midwife.) 
  • submitting my job application, 
  • playing phonics games with first graders, 
  • offering to clean my son's new house or old apartment on Saturday, as most needed.  I think my penchant for falling on concrete should eliminate me as a mover of boxes. Here's hoping I don't trip over a vacuum cleaner and bust my face open on a dresser.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

I Reckon it's the Hodgepodge

 Sometimes you need to rub the mental sticks together a long time to get the pile of brain cells to catch fire, but today's Hodgepodge questions are pretty easy. Kind of like turning on a gas fireplace with a little switch. 

Thanks, Joyce. It's been rainy and cold  on top of AND inside my head today.  I'm not feeling much like roughing it in the cranial cave.

1.  Are you a force to be reckoned with? In what way?

I asked my hubby: "Am I juggernaut?"  He answered, "Naut." 

I asked this question of my son (the 11 year old). He said, "No, not unless you're about to punish me for a week!"   Since that might happen once or twice a year, I don't think that qualifies me as a  "force to be reckoned with."  I've given people a "piece of my mind" on occasion, but usually my tendency is to stuff my deepest hurts. 

However, you mess with one of my kids?  Look out, honey! All bets are OFF !  

Oh, wait. I do know one thing that my family hears about regularly: not coming to the table for dinner right away when I call. When I'm hungry and the food's hot and I call you, and you ignore me?  GRRRRROOOOOWWWWLLLLL !!!  I don't even like it when my COMPANY dilly-dallies once I have announced, "Dinner is served."  Chop-chop, my friend!

 2. What are two things you love about the wintertime? Or, if love feels like too strong a word, what are two things you 'like' about winter? 

One: Bright red cardinals on a snowy branch

Two: snuggling under a pile of blankets with my man

3. Pomegranate, kumquat, persimmon, kiwi, and guava are all fruits said to have health benefits, particularly during the winter months. Do you have a favorite on the list? Are there any on the list you haven't tried? 

Favorite: kiwi .  I don't think I've had a kumquat.   I had a special feeling that a certain girl who brought two fresh pomegranates to a party here in 2011 might end up being my son's wife. She sure did!  As a toast to them, I arranged especially for pomegranate juice to be served at their wedding rehearsal dinner. She liked that. 

I was once tricked into eating a unripe persimmon. Just typing that sentence made me squint behind the ears, you know? Sour doesn't begin to describe unripe persimmons!

4. I passed a local church yesterday and noticed they had this on their outdoor sign- 'When all else fails, do the right thing.' Your thoughts?

That was a sign on a church?  Wow.  The advice is unbiblical.  I would call the pastor and get HIS thoughts!  Do the right thing first, last, and always.  Maybe all else has failed BECAUSE you didn't do the right thing?  That's biblical!

When a pastor misleads his congregants, or lets his signs do so, I can become a juggernaut for sure.  I can see how this sign might fester in me awhile now. 


5. Do you ski? According to one list I've seen, the top 5 ski destinations for 2014 are-St. Anton Austria, Whistler Canada, Cortina Italy, Tahoe USA, and Zermatt Switzerland.  Of the five listed, which would you most like to visit? We can make skiing optional if that helps the non-skiers with their answer. 

I don't ski. Tried it once at age 15 with the youth group and had only a little bit of fun. But the next day could not move a muscle, which was odd, because I was an in-shape cheerleader. I guess with skiing I had used muscles I never knew I had, and apparently tensed them all up for four hours straight.  Not only that, I had hit a mogul so hard that my ski ejected from the boot and went airborne over the edge of the mountain.  I used my butt as transportation to finish the course. 

I have never desired a second chance to learn.   Although, if I could literally ski my butt off, I might be tempted to try.   

Oh, why must I make a whole paragraph out of my answer? Some people manage to be brief. 

The answer to part B is Zermatt, Switzerland.     

6.  What's the last thing you looked for online? (Besides my blog!)

An SUV.   We are in the market for one. Recommendations, anyone? Love yours? Hate yours?

7. What saying, slogan, quote, or motto have you seen lately that inspires you for the new year?

Deut. 6:18 Do what is right and good in the Lord’s sight, so that it may go well with you and you may go in and take over the good land theLord promised on oath to your ancestors, 19 thrusting out all your enemies before you, as the Lord said.

 I'll be expounding on this im a future post, soon, I  hope.

8.  Insert your own random thought here. 

I've become a bit concerned   afraid in the past week dealing with a certain symptom I've never experienced.  I have been getting sudden, painful surges of coldness in my hands, and most specifically in my left pinky and down that side of my hand. Sometimes feel it in my right hand. It's different from cold hands I've had before where the skin is understandably affected by the air. 
This happens when the rest of me is warm, deep in my bones, and even when I was in the sun yesterday on a 55 degree day.  

Naturally I looked up my symptoms on WedMB and I think I have prostatitis. 

Seriously, though, I am concerned. Should I be, or am I just experiencing normal aches from being a woman of a certain age in the dead of winter? 

Friday, January 10, 2014

Christmas Lingers

The Christmas tree has been down since New Year's Day, and the fallen needles vacuumed up many times over. But if I breathe deeply (or visit my front porch),  the wonderful scent of Christmas lingers.

Decorations are all (almost) packed neatly away, relabeled and reshelved, except for one that 
didn't get the invitation to the reorganizing party.

Our dining room server no longer has this arrangement on it. But it was nice while it lasted.

The ornaments--and I used almost every single one of the treasures amassed over 27 years--have been loving wrapped and stored for another year.  But a sweet question lingers in my memory, asked by my grown daughter on Christmas Eve when everyone was here:

"So, Mom, did you cry when you were hanging up all those little ornaments we made when we were little?"

(To which I answered, "No, but I'll cry when I have to take it all down by myself! Ai, yai, yai, the un-decorating is daunting!")

 Lingering thought...

Sad thought  ...where was that baby I was so looking forward to holding and spoiling on Christmas Eve?

Well, her momma get wickedly sick to her stomach an hour beforehand. She missed her own Christmas Eve service. She missed taking baby to her first Christmas celebration.  She simply brought a loaf of bread over, apologized, held back tears, let us pass the baby around, and then left.'

Goofy thought...

I bought a fresh green swag and added my own touches.  Judging from the look of this bird, you'd think I was drinking too much eggnog. I said to him, "Oh, bird, you are being held on by a wing and a prayer."

Woops!  Now just a wing.

               I made this a two-sided window pillow. One side has big flakes, the other small. Because, like the old saying goes, "Some of my best friends are flakes."

I called this pillow design "Sashing Through the Snow."   My daughter loves it and says it looks great in her room.
Joel grew a beard for the occasion.  Ambrey excels in finding perfect gifts that bring out a lot of laughs or oohs or aaahs. 

Dee really liked the girly, pink croc wrapping paper I picked out with her in mind.
 Here she is pretending to be a QVC personality: "And if you call now, you'll get this lovely bonus gift with poinsettia and rose-colored cord!"

The girls are always thinking of each other and making things as gifts for each other. I am so blessed that they love each other in tangible ways.  Dee made this for Sarah's room. Notice by her 
clothes that she likes the color combination. 
Paul got a pick guard for his guitar that had to be demonstrated. 
Sort of.  We begged him to play a little tune while 
he had his baby out.  And he did. 

He also had prepared a fun little quiz about Christmas carols and trivia that he passed around before gifts were opened. 

The recent graduate, his collegiate wife,  and his sister/teacher on break were moaning in jest.  "Come on, Dad, really? A quiz? Don't your realize...??"  But there was a prize for the winner. 

That happened to be me.  Goody, goody!  Growing up Baptist, we always sang the first, second, and last verses . So the second-verse questions of the quiz didn't stump this ole gal!

(And no, I didn't know about the quiz or prize ahead of time. My hubby did a good job of keeping the Dunkin Donuts gift card and the quiz a secret until  show time.)
We had a little photo shoot. Sit? Stand? Where? Who? Why?
On a chair, is little brother yet as tall as big brother? 

All the girls, including Dee's mom.

All the guys. 
 And then there were other thoughts that lingered...but that's enough for now. Wrapping can't all be done at once.

Wednesday, January 08, 2014

Blue Suede Hodgepodge

I interrupt my search for a new vehicle to bring you the following edition of 
the Wednesday Hodgepodge, sponsored by 
Joyce.   Thank you, Joyce. 

One  fuuny thing before I start: my hubby just chuckled at a weather page he saw online: 
"Tonight's Low--11 degrees"
Current temperature:-- 10 degrees"

1. Every January 1st since 1976 Lake Superior University has published a list of words they'd like to see banished from the Queen's English.  Words may be banished due to misuse, overuse or just general uselessness (go here to read more about how the words were chosen).  Here are the words/phrases they'd like to see banished in 2014-

selfie, twerk/twerking, hashtag, Twittersphere, Mr. Mom, T-bone, ____on steroids, the suffixes-ageddon, and -pocalypse added to anything and everything, from the world of politics the words-intellectually/morally bankruptand Obamacare, and from the world of sports the words-adversity and fan base

Which of these words/phrases would you most like to see banished from everyday speech and why? Is there a word not on the list you'd like to add?

None of those words has bothered me (yet) from overuse. However,  I'm probably most annoyed with all the selfies I see on Facebook. It's not the selfies themselves, but the frequency and the mere fact that they are, by nature, self-focused.  I won't expound here;   I brought up this pet peeve by way of poking fun of it on my Facebook-- and one of my friends got so bent out of shape that she unfriended me. Wow. 
There's a suffix I'd like to see banned: -alicious.  Porkalicious. Waffle-icious.  Swagga-licious. It should  be banned. and so should first grade boys picking their nose and eating it. ("Boogerlicious ?")

2. What one unfinished project nags at you begging to be completed in this new year?

Fixing my old 1948 Singer 15-91 sewing machine so that I can use it.  (The power is amazing in that motor!)  It was useable when it came home from the repair shop (had it rewired for safety) but I decided to take it a little bit apart to clean the dust out, shine up some dull chrome, and polish the black metal.  (Thanks, YouTube, for the tutorial.) The other night I was "this close" to finish my reassembly it when I dropped a little, tiny screw that I cannot find anywhere. My son looked and looked. I used a flashlight. I got down on hands and needs. No can-do.
3. When did you last have a bowl of soup? What kind? Homemade or from a can? What's your favorite soup?
I can't believe I'm going to admit this, but it was a few nights ago and it was Ramen noodle soup, which is something I buy maybe once a year to satisfy my boy's craving for it.  He was so cute when he made it; he declared, "Now I'm ready for college!"  
I guess he's heard a few stories about how I survived on Ramen noodles circa 1985 in my humble apartment that had no stove, just a two-burner hot plate. And I was grateful . Hashtag Uphillbothwaysinthesnowtoschoolstory.

4. Snowed in, snowed under, snow job...which one most applies to your life in recent days, figuratively speaking.
Figuratively speaking, snow job.  I won't expound on this topic either; I have become cynical and am taking 2014 to try to reverse this recent (last 2 years) trend in my heart to believe I can't trust anyone who says they value me, my skills, or my giftings.
5. What's the funniest movie you've ever seen, or at least one of the funniest?
I'm really dating myself with this mention, but I think it was Meatballs.  Do you all remember it, with Bill Murray and all those pranks at summer camp? We laughed so hard. I wonder if I'd still find it funny, or if it just struck me funny in junior high. 

6.  In general, would you say you're clumsy?

In general, yes, and in specific, definitely yes.

7. Elvis Presley was born on Hodgepodge Day (January 8th) back in 1935.  Are you an Elvis fan?  What's your favorite Elvis tune? If that's too hard, which Elvis tune do you dislike the least?  Click here for a list of his songs.
I am an Elvis fan, indeed.   Not sure I can pick a favorite. Most danceable is "Jailhouse Rock," but I can also feel all swoony inside  when I hear "I Can't Help Falling in Love with You."  
Two bits of Elvis trivia:  (1) My husband's oldest brother used to be an Elvis impersonator. Hilarious!  He was particularly enchanting when he sang "Blue Suede Shoes." (Tony, if you're reading this, we must get an encore soon!)   (2) My mom's birthday is the day after Elvis's (but several years after).  Not that she reads my blog, but Happy Birthday to my mom!
8. Insert your own random thought here.
Here's a "What Would You Do?" scenario for you, from my real life.  Let me set the background:

Yesterday I had to take my van in for a routine oil change and to have the tire plugged.  What a cold day! On the way to the shop, I stopped at the Exxon station to clean it out. Little did I know the battery was weak; after sitting at the trash can area for all of five minutes with the door open and lights on, I couldn't restart the engine.   I sat there cold, trying to put a plan together.
I closed my doors,  watched for anyone who looked like they knew how to jumpstart a vehicle (to no avail), called my hubby who said to call GEICO. Well, GEICO had me on hold too long; I couldn't waste my battery on that. Eventually my dear friend Bonnie came to my rescue and suggested I go inside and try to find someone with the know-how and confidence to give a hot-shot. I  then walked inside Exxon, summoned my public-speaking courage and cheeriest tone, and then asked, "Excuse me,  my car battery died out there. Is anyone in here able and willing to jumpstart it for me?"
I got the following responses from the six or seven customers in line:
-some pretended they couldn't hear me (but it's a small station and I projected like a cheerleader at a pep rally)
-some got suddenly busy on their phone or in their purse
-one lady asked,"You got cables?" and when I said, "Yes," she did nothing more.  Umm....okay.
Finally, one big, friendly man --who reminded me of former Ravens linebacker Ray Lewis--stepped forward like a hero, out of the line he'd been waiting in. "I can help you, ma'am."  
And what did I do? First, I said something to him about getting more jewels in his crown for this good deed.  
Then I asked him, "Are you sure you're warm enough without a coat? I mean, I can call GEICO."   Something in me has to mother everyone I meet; why is that??  He gave Bonnie and me a brief refresher course under the hood: "black-to-black, red-to-red."  I think I knew that, but all things electrical scare the wits out of me. I thanked him profusely and he went back inside.
Anyway, what would YOU do if you had been one of the customers in the Exxon  in the same situation? Be honest. I'm curious.