Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Written by Paul Harvey.....
Paul Harvey says:
I don't believe in Santa Claus, but I'm not going to sue somebody for singing a Ho-Ho-Ho song in December. I don't agree with Darwin, but I didn't go out and hire a lawyer when my high school teacher taught his Theory of Evolution.
Life, liberty or your pursuit of happiness will not be endangered because someone says a 30-second prayer before a football game. So what's the big deal? It's not like somebody is up there reading the entire Book of Acts. They're just talking to a God they believe in and asking him to grant safety to the players on the field and the fans going home from the game.
But it's a Christian prayer, some will argue.
Yes, and this is the United States of America , a country founded on Christian principles. According to our very own phone book, Christian churches outnumber all others better than 200-to-1. So what would you expect -- somebody chanting Hare Krishna?
If I went to a football game in Jerusalem , I would expect to hear a Jewish prayer.
If I went to a soccer game in Baghdad , I would expect to hear a Muslim prayer.
If I went to a ping pong match in China , I would expect to hear someone pray to Buddha.
And I wouldn't be offended. It wouldn't bother me one bit.
When in Rome .....
But what about the atheists? Is another argument.
What about them? Nobody is asking them to be baptized. We're not going to pass the collection plate. Just humor us for 30 seconds. If that's asking too much, bring a Walkman or a pair of ear plugs. Go to the bathroom. Visit the concession stand. Call your lawyer!
Unfortunately, one or two will make that call. One or two will tell thousands what they can and cannot do. I don't think a short prayer at a football game is going to shake the world's foundations.
Christians are just sick and tired of turning the other cheek while our courts strip us of all our rights. Our parents and grandparents taught us to pray before eating, to pray before we go to sleep. Our Bible tells us to pray without ceasing. Now a handful of people and their lawyers are telling us to cease praying.
God, help us. And if that last sentence offends you, well, just sue me.
The silent majority has been silent too long. It's time we tell that one or two who scream loud enough to be heard that the vast majority doesn't care what they want. It is time that the majority Rules! It's time we tell them, You don't have to pray; you don't have to say the Pledge of Allegiance; you don't have to believe in God or attend services that honor Him. That is your right, and we will honor your right; but by golly, you are no longer going to take our rights away. We are fighting back, and we WILL WIN!
God bless us one and all ... Especially those who denounce Him , God bless America, despite all her faults. She is still the greatest nation of all. God bless our service men who are fighting to protect our right to pray and worship God.
Let's make 2009 the year the silent majority is heard and we put God back as the foundation of our families and institutions .. And our military forces come home from all the wars.
Keep looking up.
'AND THAT'S THE REST OF THE STORY'
Saturday, December 27, 2008
It was a very exciting week, as my brother graduated from Navy Boot Camp. He has much to be proud of! He was the RPOC of his division, which basically means he was in charge of 88 other guys. He also got a promotion while he was in, which is very unusual at Boot Camp. I am very proud of him!
Last night, I was lucky enough to spend a couple of hours listening to some of his stories. We will also get to see him on Sunday for a BIG family gathering in his honor!
After the Holidays, he will return to Chicago for 32 weeks of schooling. If we're lucky, maybe we can go back and visit him on the base this Spring!
I'm proud of you!!
When I saw him, I gave him his Christmas present. It took him approx. 10 seconds and 2 bites to eat 2 entire Swiss Cake Rolls. (For some reason he never got the ones I sent in the mail)
Friday, December 26, 2008
Cold Wind. Escalators. Poker. Lego Men. Taxi Cabs.
Water. Elevators. BURTON. Blue Men.
Starbucks.(and more) Cold Wind.
Setting: Back seat of a yellow CAB, on the way home from The Blue Man Group
[Eyliana's 2nd CAB ride of her life]
Eyli: "Grandpa, I don't know what my mom is talking about!"
Grandpa: "What do you mean, honey?"
Eyli: (loud enough for the driver to hear) "My mom said that CAB drivers are all crazy, but I don't think so! I like riding in the CAB!"
Thursday, December 25, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Sunday, December 21, 2008
Thought I'd share......
Dear Cook Family -
It has been brought to my attention that you will spend the days before Christmas in Chicago, as a family. How exciting for you!
Kids – because you are getting older, it is getting harder and harder for me to bring you the right toys – (you know, the things you really want.) So, I thought this year I would leave you a little spending money – and you can pick out your own gifts in Chicago.
This is actually a wonderful arrangement for me, as I will have less to carry in my sleigh on Christmas Eve. Contrary to popular belief, I am OLD – and delivering presents to a BILLION or more in one night is quite difficult. I applaud your parents for setting up this little arrangement, as it saves me time and money. In fact, your parents are geniuses (especially your mom).
I may stop by on Christmas Eve, simply to fill your stockings and check for those little cookies. PLEASE make sure to leave the little carrots, too – as the reindeer were quite upset that they had to come out 4 nights in advance to deliver your letter – and there were no carrots here. (In fact, Rudolph really threw a fit when I told him we were leaving without the carrots.)
Have a great time in Chicago – make sure your Grandpa wears a hat, or his head will freeze!
Friday, December 19, 2008
I am lucky enough to work at a school, therefore I don't have to go back to work till January 5th!
And I got an extra day off today! Yeah!
One thing I didn't get done -
I forgot to tell my lunch buddy that I wouldn't be around for a few weeks.
Almost everyday I eat my lunch in a park.
I usually stay in my car and eat, or read.
Almost everyday my lunch buddy sits right outside my car door.
Waiting for me to feed him.
At first the "don't feed the waterfowl" signs scared me into obeying the law.
But, he was very persistent.
And I kept thinking "he looks hungry and cold"
So, I started feeding him.
Now, when I pull up, he's at my door within minutes.
(I have a feeling that I'm not the only 'LUNCH BUDDY' he has. I brought my husband with me on this trip, and he said he was so fat he looked like a Turkey)
According to Dan, I am not technically breaking the law, as he CLAIMS that a seagull doesn't count in the "waterfowl" category.
I'll stick with that - to avoid the guilt.....
Thursday, December 18, 2008
She's the little dancer in the middle of the screen. If you look really closely, you can see her cousin, David, dancing 2 spots to the RIGHT.
Don't miss the KICK LINE at the end. Too cute!
(Don't mind mommy's camera flashing every 5 seconds)
Sunday, December 14, 2008
Saturday, December 13, 2008
Today, as I read Karrie's Blog, I suddenly felt immense PRIDE for my baby brother. Congrats to you and all of your hard work!
Over the years, alot of people I know have had relatives serving in the Armed Forces, over-sees and here in the US. I am sorry to say, I just continued to tell people things like - "I'll be praying for your family" or "I'm sure it must be hard being without your loved one", and then I went on with my day without ever thinking about them again. It never really HIT HOME, in the gut, until it IS MY BABY BROTHER. Wow, it gives me a whole new perspective.
I am proud of you, dude.
Your Big Sis
Friday, December 12, 2008
Kristie: (FAST ASLEEP, in bed) ZZZzzzz….ZZZZZzzzz…
Dan: (Just Arriving home from Ski Club, WIDE AWAKE) Hey, wake up!! You’ve got some mail!!
Kristie: Honey, I’m sleepy….
Dan: But, I just got the mail, and you got a postcard.
Kristie: Honey, I don't care about mail .
Dan: But, It’s from Andy!
Kristie: What? COOL! Andy wrote me a letter? (WIDE AWAKE, sitting up in bed)
Dan: Yep, here it is.
Kristie: (Annoyed) Honey, this is the self addressed/stamped postcard I sent to him.
Dan: OHHHH, I wondered why his handwriting looked like yours.
Kristie: (More Annoyed that I am now WIDE AWAKE) I'm going back to sleep.
Three things I learned from this conversation:
- Even though I set up his computer to “Automatically Show” my blog’s web address when he opens the EXPLORER icon, MY HUSBAND still does not read my blog.
- Even though my brother is a HULINGS, he still isn’t smart enough to realize that he didn’t need to put another stamp on the postcard, as I had already stamped it.
- As far as I’m concerned, there is still no reason to check the mailbox.
Wednesday, December 10, 2008
you will lie down and sleep soundly.
25 You need not be afraid of sudden disaster
or the destruction that comes upon the wicked,
26 for the Lord is your security.
He will keep your foot from being caught in a trap.
Thank you, Lord, for always offering PEACE as an option.
Monday, December 8, 2008
Friday, December 5, 2008
I've been told over the past 2 weeks that "It's a Nationwide Problem"
Are you kidding me?
Why couldn't they run out of Toffee Nut Syrup?
I'm so bothered by it, that I couldn't even blog about it until now.
This is a picture of me, last Sunday, after I finally got my coffee fix. I had to drive to WALKER to get this, near Grandville. If you can't read my lips I'm saying, "Thank GOD!" The WALKER store obviously went above and beyond, and stocked up on my SYRUP, just in case there was ever a "Nationwide Shortage".
Feel sorry for me a little bit. It's my birthday today. I literally received a total of $95 in STARBUCKS gift cards for my birthday, from 4 different people.
And I couldn't even drink my FAVORITE drink, because of a NATIONWIDE shortage.
PS: The caption on this picture, however, would be: 'When will she get her bottom braces? her top teeth are so straight, and her bottom teeth are still VERY crooked.'
This week, I failed to continue to convince him that was a good idea.
This is the beginning of his sleeve. It obviously isn't anywhere near being completed. Now that the initial battle is over, I am assuming the entire sleeve will quickly evolve on a weekly basis.
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Sebastian: Yes, it was so cool! Mr. Cook is the coolest bus driver ever!
Mrs. Cook: I know - he is pretty cool. He didn't get lost, did he?
Sebastian: Well, ummmm, well - no, he just took a little longer to get there than most people.
Tuesday, December 2, 2008
Realizing that we've been Told that you probably won't write back to us, I have stolen dad's idea and enclosed a SELF-ADDRESSED, STAMPED postcard that you can send back to me.
(for my faithful blog readers - here is what it says)
Thank you for sending all of those letters! I think you are the greatest sister in the whole world. I also think you are very smart, much smarter than our other brother. In fact, on a smartness level - you are definitely the smartest kid in our family.
My superior officers thank you for all of the Swiss Cake Rolls you sent. But, don't worry about me, the food here is great.
Can't wait to see you this Christmas! I hope you can sneak into the graduation ceremony!!
Your Little Bro,
Property of the US Navy
Sunday, November 30, 2008
Thank goodness for:
- Comcast ON DEMAND (Little Einsteins & Mickey)
- The Snack Cupboard
- The Piano
- and this VASE thingy that Dom has LOVED since he was born
I hope you had a happy Thanksgiving Weekend. We miss you around here.
Your Big Sis
(and your little boys)
Friday, November 28, 2008
PERFECT PICTURE of the Cook Family.
- Socks are being sorted, because Dan said they had to be. Do you see me in this picture? No, because I only sort socks ONCE-A-YEAR – on Father’s Day.
- Dan is diligently sorting the socks, with a pair of underwear on his head.
- Katie is FED UP, and is ‘kindly requesting to be excused’ from this chore.
- Tyler is the smart one, and figures if he sits there with his mouth shut, Dan may just make Katie do the whole thing by herself, considering she’s the one that is ‘kindly requesting to be excused’.
- Eyliana is still young enough to do exactly what her dad tells her.
- Dudley is happily enjoying time with his family, where almost everyone is in the same room, and he can play with as many socks as he wants.
Thursday, November 27, 2008
today we took our ANNUAL "(very-smart) Fab Four" Holiday Picture. You know - the "gay one" that I make you SIT STILL for - on EVERY holiday. It somehow wasn't the same without you.
However, the three of us look more like siblings than you do, anyway. At one point, we substituted Jamie's dog for you. He actually looks more like our sibling than you do, too.
Hope you had a bunch of GREAT FOOD for Thanksgiving. I ate an extra piece of Apple Pie for you. We actually had SO MUCH food left over - we couldn't figure out why - Mom finally said, "It must be because Andy didn't eat."
I am thankful for you. (I'm also thankful that we have more leftovers this year)
Your Big Sis
- Divine Intervention – God’s always got my back.
- Daniel Wayne Cook – and all of his 'Dan'nerisms.
- Kaitlyn M., Tyler W., and Eyliana D. Cook – and everything they are that reminds me of their father.
- My new boss – for Influence, Respect and Change.
- My Bestest Bud – and her wisdom and encouragement.
- 420-some students at WMAAA – and all of the little germs that come with them.
- Friends at Faith Harbor Ministries – Old and New.
- My 2nd Best Friend – and his unconditional love.
- My extended family – there’s like a million of you.
- All of you that read this nonsense everyday – even if some of you don’t leave comments – yep, I’m thankful for you, too.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Did you watch it? Probably not, because the American Music Awards were on at the same time – so, you guys were probably watching that.
Common, don’t tell me that now that you’re the Cheif Honcho over there, that they don’t give you TV time?? You’re probably sitting there drinking STARBUCKS right now reading my letters. (I know…..Without the whip cream, of course.)
Your Big Sis
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
1. You CAN’T open plastic packages with your teeth. It’s impossible.
2. You CAN’T bite your nails, or cuticles. I obviously USED TO do that all the time. Now my nails look great.
3. You CAN’T eat without brushing your teeth afterward. Well, you CAN, but you shouldn’t. (Take my word for it)
Monday, November 24, 2008
Sunday, November 23, 2008
"If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head."[e] 21Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Thanks for caring about such things.....
Your big Sis
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
This is just me "catching up".
- Jamie got a new puppy! I haven't seen him yet, but his name is TYSON - and he is a beagle mix.
- Dad started a new church - Faith Harbor - and Dan and I are excited to start serving! On our first Sunday, last week, we had 46 people in attendance!!!
- Cook Underground isn't doing that good, so Dan is now DRIVING A SCHOOL BUS. He went back and finished getting his "P" and "S" endorsement so he could drive our school to field trips!!! He loves it!
- Dan did not see ONE deer when he was "hunting" in the woods - he did, however, see a deer on the way up to the woods. It was standing on the side of the road, bleeding out of it's mouth. My husband got out of his truck, chased the deer through the woods, jumped on its back, stabbed it in the heart, and slit it's throat. NO, I'm serious. (He was attempting to save it from suffering, because he figured it must have gotten hit by a car) I'll let him tell you the story over Christmas.
- Eyli has a piano party today - you would not believe how well she is playing, now!! She's come a long way since - Ballerina Bears (or whatever that song was called) :)
- Tyler is playing indoor soccer and they win every game like 13-2.
- Katie is LOVING highschool, (a WHOLE SCHOOL of girls just like her - Ya, it's wonderful......)
- We are going to Thanksgiving at moms new house. I am trying to convince her that we should "Deep fry" the Turkey this year!! We'll see how that goes :) We will miss you........
Keep in mind - I ATTEMPTED to send Swiss Cake Rolls with this letter. If you didn't get them - they must've confiscated them.
Bummer for you.....
Your Big Sis
Monday, November 17, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Today brought the beginning of a journey.
A journey of FAITH, where a group of believers met as a small church body to explore God's Word and encourage each other. Our new Pastor, happens to be my dad; and the group of friends surrounding us is SMALL, but MIGHTY.
We took communion, explored God's Word, sang a-capella, got to know each other &
took pictures of the very first SUNDAY at
Faith Harbor of Muskegon.
we are meeting at WMC high-school in Muskegon at 10:30 am on Sundays.
Our kids made use of the "church is over, but our parents are still fellowshipping" time - and decided it was a great opportunity to relax and 'text' important people.
Saturday, November 15, 2008
That is so like you –
- Wait a week
- Assess the food – Is it good? Just OK? Yucky?
- Once you realize it’s good
- Make a move
- Make sure you get the job
- That gets you to the food faster
I also got word that you can’t receive Swiss Cake Rolls in the mail! Bummer! I will have to eat the box that I bought for you.
(Are you on a boat?)
Your Big Sis
Thursday, November 13, 2008
Especially when you are the type of person that likes to STAY in the same little box you were always in
When you feel the loss of what you left behind SO BAD that it's gut-wrenching
When you're excited and scared about the future all at the same time
When you have to say "God, are you SURE?", even though you know you're not supposed to
I've been attempting to write a NICE LITTLE BLOG about the recent change in our CHURCH life. Every time I sit down to do it, I GOT NOTHIN'.......
This week I received this letter from one of my bestest friends.
It warmed my heart
It made me feel like God was telling me, "you'll be fine"
And it WROTE my blog
All at the same time.
(Now, that's a good friend)
I've been thinking about you a lot lately and all of the changes. By changes, I mean you leaving.
It's bittersweet. Bitter because we won't be worshipping together on Sundays. Bitter because we have come to love you and your family as our family. We have been blessed by having you in our lives.
Sweet because it's difficult to do anything but celebrate when people you love answer God's call, even when it takes them on a different path. The interesting thing I have come to realize out of all of this is that though we are on different paths, we are still going in the same direction. The direction of the cross, the direction of Christ. That is a beautiful and joyous thing!
So I want to say to you, my friend, I will miss our time of worship, but I celebrate with you. Enjoy and be blessed on this new adventure God has called you to.
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
I’m so sorry, I really wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday in person.
I did, however, see 2 NAVY guys in the Water Tower Place Mall. Dan pulled on my arm, as I proceeded to walk up to them.
All I wanted to do was ask them if they knew you. My plan was to have them SNEAK a Swiss Cake Roll back onto base, in celebration of your birthday. There are 2 reasons that you are not eating a Swiss Cake Roll as you read this.
- Dan held me back, and convinced me that those 2 sailor boys wearing white sailor hats could not possibly know you.
- Dan held me back, and convinced me that those two sailor boys wearing white sailor hats may be your superior officers.
Hope you enjoyed your birthday!
Did they give you an extra dessert or something?
Your Big Sis
Tuesday, November 11, 2008
are still a weekly occurrence here in our house!!
Dan: Well, ISN'T that the CAT CALLING the POT BLACK.
Like every other small business, Cook Underground, Inc. has felt the impact of the Michigan Economy. This winter, Dan will be making some extra money by driving around in a bus.
Because he already had his CDL license, it was a matter of him taking some “bus driving” classes over the past weeks before he could officially “drive” kids around.
He will start by driving the “field trip” bus for Tyler and Eyli’s school. And hopefully, he will be able to pick up some shifts as a “sub” at local schools in the area.
Last week, he took his first field trip to Grand Rapids with the WMAAA 4th graders.
Phone Call –
Kristie: West Michigan Academy, this is Kristie.
Dan: Hello, this is the WMAAA Bus Driver.
Kristie: Yes, what can I do for you?
Dan: I am just calling to let dispatch know that the 4th grade has safely arrived at their destination.
Kristie: We don’t have any “dispatch” here.
Dan: (I know, babe, I’m suppose to call into “dispatch” when we arrive.)
Kristie: OHHHH, Ok, thank you for calling, Bus-Driver!!
Dan: I will let you know when we leave to come back to school.
Kristie: Will you take me on a date tonight?
(The Bus Driver is HOT!)
Sunday, November 9, 2008
#2 - The people here can always see the best in people.
The Wicked Witch was really a NICE person.
#3 - The Talbott Hotel and it's luxurious shower.
#5 - A place where you can buy cool snowboarding clothes, and the people who sell them don't care that you don't snowboard (because you're afraid of the chairlift)
#6 - The ANNOYING cab driver that honks at you when you're walking, suddenly becomes your best friend when you need to get somewhere fast.
(We almost died on this particular cab ride)
#7 - Three floors
#8 - I'm really close to my brothers house,
no, I haven't found him yet.
#9 - Alone time
Thursday, November 6, 2008
- I LOVE email.
- I check my email all day long.
- At work I have a little picture of an envelope that pops up on my screen when someone sends me an email.
- When I get home from work, I check my email right when I get through the door. (In case someone sent me one while I was on my way home).
- After dinner, I check it again.
- Before bed I check it again.
- The first thing I do when I wake up is check my email. (While the coffee is brewing)
Dan checks his email once a week.
Just today, he answered an email I sent him last Wednesday.
- Dan LOVES the mail in the mail box.
- He checks to see if the mail lady came 3 times a day.
- When he's home he watches for the mail lady like she is bringing him a present (instead of a bunch of bills)
- Every time he leaves the house, he stops at the end of the driveway, gets out and checks the mailbox.
- When he returns to the house, he stops at the end of the driveway, and makes the kids get out to check the mailbox.
- (Sometimes he even checks it AFTER he already got the mail out of it for the day)
I NEVER check the mailbox.
As far as I'm concerned, I'll wait till the bill collectors call me on the phone.
Or maybe they could just send me an email?
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Whatever you do, make sure to watch this video ALONE! Do not show it to your Navy friends, as you look like a total WUSS. It doesn't help that Dan is such a STUD and makes you look bad.
(Just between us - I think he rigged up the game so he wasn't getting SHOCKED at all, and you were.)
Hope all is well on midnight watch.....
Your Big Sis
Sunday, November 2, 2008
He hasn't gotten any ducks yet.
He DESIGNED this DUCK-blanket that he made out of lightweight fencing and FAKE GRASS.
He zip-tied the grass to the fencing, to create a blanket to cover up with.
Then when the DUCK's fly over,
he JUMP's OUT from under the blanket and shoots them.
He went Duck Hunting again yesterday.
He took his NEWLY invented DUCK-BLANKET with him.
Still no ducks.
We could always use it as a DOG-BLANKET.
Dudley loves the thing.