Archive for September, 2010

Secret Keeper Girls

Posted in This and that with tags , , , , , , , on 09/29/2010 by Susan Shay


Above is a picture from the Secret Keeper Girl blog.

Last Saturday night, I took my 11-year-old niece to the SKG conference in Tulsa. We met several other girls (12-years-old and younger) and their moms for dinner first.

The idea of riding in a van full of squealing little girls was a little much for me, so I drove. I noticed at dinner, though, the girls from my church did very little shrieking, and I’m grateful.

Several of my favorite women took their daughters, so I had a great time at dinner. My niece did quite a bit of table hopping–proof she had a great time, too.

I was late getting our tickets, so we didn’t sit with our home group at the conference. If we go next year, I plan to get seats with everyone else!

So what happens at a Secret Keepers conference (beside enough little girl squealing to last me a loooong time?)

They used scriptures to tell the girls that they’re beautiful just as God created them. They are princesses in God’s house and don’t need makeup or tight, revealing clothes to be pretty.

They taught the girls several tests to see if their clothes are what a Secret Keeper should wear, called Truth or Bare Fashion Tests. If you have a minute, check it out. I know several adults who could learn something! (I certainly did.)

Their website has a secret for the girls to discover anytime they’re online. Go see.  

I had a great time at the SKG conference, and only a couple complaints.

1- We could only find two (2!) bathrooms with 3 or 4 stalls each.  I’m not sure how many females were in the place. I’m horrible at that kind of estimating. Maybe a thousand? If there were only 500, EIGHT STALLS ARE NOT ENOUGH!

And those were at the bottom of five or six stairs. I’m so glad I didn’t need John MyCane anymore. I don’t know what women in wheelchairs did. But, yeah, I could live with that.

2- The big complaint at this conference is the same one I have at many Christian functions–Women who think, because they’re at a Christian function, they can order others to do this or that, and we’ll do it because, after all, we are Christians. Do unto others. Right?


So I was directed to “move down” because some friends were coming from the nosebleed section to sit by them.

Hey! I paid for these seats in this section. Those people paid for less expensive seats. Isn’t it tantamount to stealing when they sit in seats they didn’t pay for?

People! What are you teaching your daughters?

Are you wondering if we moved? Yes. We. Did. (Teeth gritted.) Why?

I figured the message I sent my niece by letting someone steal seats was less harmful than the message I’d be sending if I punched out the over-bearing woman. 😉

I’ll have to check with her mother and see what she thinks.

Disappointing Mary

Posted in My World on 09/24/2010 by Susan Shay

Yesterday I posted a question on Facebook and Twitter.

Hey Okies: Mary or Jari for gov? I hrd NYT is predting an easy win for Mary Fallin over Jari Askins. Right or wrong? (And how do they know?)

I hoped to get some answers (I like and dislike things about both candidates) but also hoped the question would bring to light predictions and how those calls are made.

Do they actually come to Oklahoma? (I wasn’t sure that the coasts even recognized Oklahoma as part of the US.) If they do poll in OK, do they only go to cities or do they go to smaller towns, too? Do they contact people who are truly going to vote, or do they just look at the way OK voted in the last election and go with that?

To be very honest, I’m about as unpolitical as I can be.

But here’s what’s funny–When I got home from work last night, I had a message that Mary Fallin is following ME on Twitter. Yikes.

Boy is she going to be disappointed.


Being Terminally Curious I wonder about other people. I know they’re out there, the folks who love politics and get a charge out of knowing all about the way the country, state or city is run.

But that’s not me. When it’s time to vote, I’ll read up on Mary and Jari to find out what they’re promising. Trouble is, I’m a skeptic. I know they won’t be able to keep every promise they make. They probably don’t even want to keep them all.

For most people, that’s just the way of the world. No big deal.

But I’m not most people. What I need to know about a person running for office is about their integrity. I firmly believe a person is only as good as her word.

If you’re a liar or a cheat, I don’t want to vote for you. Even if you’re only a cheat in your personal life or only lie when you’re talking to your loved ones, I still won’t believe in you. Because sooner or later, when the heat is on and you’re under great stress, you’ll do it to us, too.

You’ll cheat your constituents. You’ll lie to us and smile while you’re doing it. Because you can.

But if you honestly want what’s best for all the people, if you want all our citizens to live the best lives possible with jobs that pay a fair wage and affordable housing, and if you want all our kids to have the best education and future out there, and to be able to get it here, in our great state . . .

Let’s talk.

I’m Poll Dancing

Posted in My World with tags , on 09/23/2010 by Susan Shay

I don’t think I’ve mentioned in the last couple of days that I blog other places, too. Today, I’m at WRITINGSLUTS. And guess what! I learned how to make a poll. I might have gone just a little overboard. (I made 3. LOL)

No to the poll tax.

Yesterday, I posted on THE TWISTED SISTERS blog.

I hope you’ll drop by and say hi in both places. Be sure to do a little poll dancing with me while you’re there.

Pat’s New Old House

Posted in My World with tags , , , , , , , on 09/20/2010 by Susan Shay

When G-Man’s father died, we bought the house to refinish and sell.

That’s been several years ago. Not exactly a bargain after we’ve kept it this long, but we’re just about finished, and now I’m so glad he did it!

Before we bought the house, for reasons beyond our control, it had been neglected for many years and needed lots of work. Now it has it!

We pulled up old carpets and refinished the wood floors.

This is a picture of my wood floor at home  Pat’s wood floor. The floor has narrower strips, kind of like you’d find in a butcher block.

It’s absolutely beautiful now that it’s been redone. Not perfect, but so pretty I can hardly wait to share.

Yesterday I went over to sand and paint the window seats in the living room and bedroom. I could just imagine them being made the focal point of the room. I’m going back to put on a second coat today.

This is a picture of the real window seat. You can see cardboard on the floor so my drips won’t mess it up. And there’s blue tape protecting the walls. I can only imagine how it’ll look when someone moves in.

Can’t you imagine the bedroom with the window seat with a cushion to make the backside more comfortable and piles of pillows? What an inviting place for a little girl to dream or read or write in her diary. (Do little girls write in diaries anymore?)

This pic is from

In the hallway, there’s a place built into the wall for a phone. Yesterday I told G-Man that we needed to paint it, too, so it would match the rest of the woodwork.

“I don’t know if I want to do that. My granddad made it for my mom. When they built the house, she called and asked him to build it. This is the original condition.”

I couldn’t stand it. Not only did I NOT want to paint it, I didn’t want to sell it with the house. Knowing who’d built it, I wanted to keep it so we’d always have a connection to his mom’s dad.

So I asked him to remove it and bring it home. I’m not sure what I’ll do with it once I get it home. Hang it on the wall, probably. I’ll share it with you when I do!

Here it is!!! It’s setting on a yellow tote lid. Try to ignore the dust. 😛

Isn’t it beautiful???


Posted in My World with tags , , on 09/16/2010 by Susan Shay

I’m talking about memories and my visit to the Memory Barn in Branson over Labor Day at Writing Sluts today.

Come on over and see what I found in Branson!

What About Names?

Posted in My World with tags , , , , , , , on 09/15/2010 by Susan Shay

If you talk to a writer, one of the things they fixate on is character names. Unlike real life, for our main characters, the names have to be perfect. A tough guy has to have a tough name. A stand-on-her-own-feet woman needs a beautiful name that doesn’t sound like a little girl.

The name needs to fit!

More about names in a few.  

Know what’s in this picture?

It’s hard to tell, but it’s a “hover” of trout. (That’s another hint about where I’m leading. More about that later. Read on!) 

On our trip to Branson, G-Man and I went to the Shepherd of the Hills Fish Hatchery. We’ve been there before, but always enjoy going back. I love to fish (although I’ve never fished around Branson) and someday I’m going to learn to fly fish!  

They have lots of pools of trout in sizes starting at about the length of your pinky (maybe that’s why they call them fingerlings) to the ones you see above.

There’s even fish food available to feed them. The jump on each nibble like shiver of sharks in a James Bond movie.

Just below the hatchery is what looks to me like a river, but I think it’s Lake Taneycomo, just at the foot of Tablerock dam.

This is looking down Taneycomo. 

Looking toward the dam. Fishermen waded all the way across the lake right here, and kids played everywhere without parents having to worry too much.

These little girls had a cute puppy. At first, they put him down so he could wade in the water, he acted like a cat–hiked his back and lifted first one foot, and then the other, trying to shake the water off.

They picked him up right away.

I asked the girl’s mother’s permission before I took this picture. Aren’t they both adorable?

While we were at the hatchery, G-Man and I saw two couples from C Town! One was a couple I knew individually, but didn’t know were together until they surprised us while we were fish watching. (Hi, Lori and Michael!)

Being terminally curious, I was full of questions but didn’t have the guts to ask. Luckily, I happened onto Lori in the bathroom, where I got the scoop. Talk about being out of the know! I’m so glad I had a chance to catch up.   

They’re both so nice, and just perfect for each other. 😛

G-Man and I drove up river to a turnout so I could get these pictures of Taneycomo.

Those are fishing boats, dotting the lake. Must be deeper here than near the dam.

The lake  is small, but beautiful. Made me wish I  had a boat so I could see more of it.  

Group names–

So I called it a “hover” of trout. Did you know that a school of trout is a hover? I got an information sheet with a few other names of animal groups.

Here are the most interesting:

(From a give away at the Shepherd of the Hills Hatchery Fish Hatchery information center.)

A group of badgers is a Cete.

A group of moles is a Labor.

A group of cockroaches is an Intrusion! (No kidding.)

A group of owls is a Parliament.

A group of ravens is an Unkindness.

A group of eagles is a Convocation.

And my favorite–A group of buzzards is a Wake.

Rhinoceroses–a crash.

Porcupines–a prickle.

Kangaroos–a troop.

And elephants? A herd. (Didn’t work real hard on that one, did they?)

The group names really kind of make sense, don’t they? How many did you already know?

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