Author Archives: debwa

About debwa

Follower of Christ. Married, Mommy, Mariners fan. Social Media Junkie. Interested in theology, history, politics, and especially areas where those three topics intersect.

Pi Day


Today is a day to eat pie and celebrate math.

I went to the grocery store and bought some pie for dinner. But then I swung through the drive through to grab a quick lunch.

And what did I see?!?

It’s also Shamrock Shake season.

Many, many years ago I started a social media campaign to bring the shamrock shake to north Texas.

Success tastes delicious.


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I’m trying to get into a habit of writing. I’m not entirely sure if it will be on this blog – or perhaps elsewhere offline. The last several weeks and months have brought several topics to my mind as well as a larger project I’d love to finally (after really years of considering it) get going.

In saying that, I continue to hit the same roadblocks I’ve always hit.


Mental Energy.

Emotional Energy.

Fearing Failure before I even start, and therefore, don’t start.

All of those things (and more) still exist, but as I’ve talked to people in my everyday life, as well as a few people I admire online, I think I’m at a point where I need to just suck it up, ignore fear of failure, make time, and just do it. Just write.

I’ve always known that if I talk about ideas and goals out loud to people, it makes me much more likely to follow through. And while I’m not entirely ready to “write about writing” on this blog, I’ve been talking in real life and sharing goals and ideas with people.

When I tell people what I’m thinking or wanting to do, it’s partly to judge their instant feedback. Am I crazy? Is this a really bad idea? How do they react in body language and words? It’s also partly to hear myself say it out loud. If I’m at a point where I can start to say outloud things I’ve considered for years, it’s becomes more real.

All of that to say, I just spent an silly amount of time seeing if I can migrate this blog to a different free hosting site so I don’t have all the ugly ads. I have concluded that for now – the ads are here to stay UNLESS we were to bite the bullet and play for a WP plan. (Which I don’t see happening anytime soon. Needs over wants, a wanting myself and readers to not see ugly ads is currently in the want category.)

With that – I’ll admit I am skipping church right now because I needed to get some mental, offline writting stuff done and its one of the few times that my kids are out of the house, completely leaving me alone.

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I turned 42 last week. My kids are getting older and (if Twitter dies) I should have more time on my hands in this season of life.

I do miss long form writing, and while I’m not starting a substack subscription like everyone else in the world, I would love to get back to writing here.

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Yesterday I turned 40

I haven’t forgotten this blog.

I know it looks that way as my posts dropped off from at least once or twice a month to zero in a year, but it’s often on my mind. Perhaps this post will silently explain the busyness and importance of life around me that prevents my public writing. The words are there, in my mind, they just don’t make it all the way to here.

As I reflect back over my 30s, it is a decade of mostly imminence joy, but also deep sorrow. On one hand I would likely consider it “the best decade of my life.” And yet, there is one dark blotch of sadness that makes me hesitant to label it as such. <— This is as far as I got in writing before my younger brother (who lives over 2,000 miles away) slammed into my sliding glass door startling me into practically having a heart attack. He had flown in (unbeknownst to me) and came along with my older brother and his family to surprise me for my birthday.

Since that point on Saturday, it’s been birthday celebrations and surprises. I didn’t get a chance to finish my thoughts.

Now, the day after my birthday, I couldn’t sleep. Perhaps this is the very definition of being “old.” Although reality suggests it’s more likely I have an early apt at the DMV to renew my license and my brain is terrified I’ll miss it. I hardly ever set alarm and if I sleep in, I’ll need to drive around illegally for the next month.

I do intend to complete my original thoughts for this post but I’ll leave you with this, a bullet point summary of the last ten years.

*2010 – I turned 30 and 9 days later, got married

*2011 – JJ had a short hospital stay. I was laid off about three weeks after he came home. Our house was invaded with bedbugs.

*2012 – We started our debt free journey and learned we were expecting our first child.

*2013 – I was laid off again, four months before Zayden was born. We finished paying off 46,000 dollars of debt in 22 months.

*2014 – We traded in my beloved Jetta of 10 years to purchase a minivan.

*2015 – Elliot was born.

*2016 – I had open heart surgery. Four months after surgery, we sold our town home and moved to our current house.

*2017 – We took a family road trip to visit my brother Tim and his family in South Dakota. Robin was born.

*2018 – Tim died.

*2019 – I started seeing a counselor and taking medicine to help recover from medical PTSD. We officially started homeschooling. We celebrated our 9th anniversary with a kid-free trip to Disney World.

*2020 – The pandemic began and I turned 40.

I hope to elaborate on some of these items more in future days. If you are curious about anything from 2016 and earlier, just search this blog. I’ve written in detail about many of those items already.

Thanks for reading this disjointed, understated reflection of a decade in the life of one who knows she’s living in Bonus Time.

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Today is my 39th birthday.

This morning I was booted from the house so my kids could “surprise” me with baking me a birthday cake. Surprise is in quotes because I’m the one that set out the cake box and frosting a few days ago. I also made sure to leave 3 eggs in the fridge. 🙂

While they baked a cake, made cards, and wrapped gifts, I wondered around my favorite thrift stores.

Between Veteran’s Day sales (50% entire store) and price tag color mark down (one store had 3 colors at 75% off) I found some fantastic deals.

I found a couple of my brand, my size jeans.

I also found some wonderful old books. (Such as a lovely 2 volume set of “The Outline of History” by H. G. Wells. I’m aware some of its content is not congruent with a Biblical Worldview but I’m still interested in reading the books.)

I think we are ending the day with my choice of dinner (wings?), cake & cards. I love celebrating my birthday and being that I almost didn’t live through my first day, I’ll never be ashamed of my age.

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Disney World Experiences

I’ve written before about “Disneyland experiences” (see here).

However… to celebrate our anniversary, we are going, not to Disneyland, but Disney WORLD.

I haven’t been since 6th grade. To say I’m excited is an understatement – maybe mostly because it will be our first kid free getaway in six years.

Unbelievably, our oldest (now six…. see, that’s why no kid free trips), took the news really well.

I started out with gentle info. “Now son, you know that grandpa and grandma moved to Florida but just because we go to visit them does not mean we are going to Disney every time.”

Later “You know, Mommy & Daddy might go to DW without you kids. You realize you are really tall and can ride all the big rides, but little bro & sis can’t.”

Then I overheard him telling little bro “Mommy and Daddy ARE going to DW without us. Because I’m tall and you are not. I can ride all the rides but you can’t. We would waste a lot of time standing in line….”

Truth. He took our conversations to their correct conclusion.

JJ and I have talked at length how we want the kids to be out of diapers, and even more so, old enough to remember. Six is probably old enough, but four and two are not.

Anyway, I’m super pumped to get time to myself with JJ. I keep thinking “Getting out the door…. it won’t take forever!” And not only do we get a few days and nights of quality time, we get to do fun things and eat at fancy places.

Lastly…. we have a breakfast reservation at Oga’s Cantina. The reservation was not easy to get because the Galaxy’s Edge is extremely popular.

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Here is a list of books I’ve read so far this year. (Some are chapter books I read with the kids and some are books I’ve technically “listened” to via audiobook.)

2019 books

1. Food: A Love Story – Jim Gaffigan

2. The Tipping Point – Malcom Gladwell

3. The Penderwicks: A Summer Tale of Four Sisters, Two Rabbits, and a Very Interesting Boy – Jeanne Birdsall

4. Little House in the Big Woods – Laura Ingalls Wilder

5. Farmer Boy – Laura Ingalls Wilder

6. David & Goliath – Malcom Gladwell

7. Penderwicks on Gardam Street – Jeanne Birdsall

8. Little House on the Prairie – Laura Ingalls Wilder

9. Unbroken – Laura Hillenbrand

10. On the Banks of Plumb Creek – Laura Ingalls Wilder

11. Origin – Dan Brown

12. The Life You’ve Always Wanted – John Ortberg

13. Frog & Toad – Arnold Lobel

14. Henry Huggins & the paper route – Beverly Cleary

15. The First Consperacy – Brad Meltzer

16. Mary Poppins – PJ Trappers

17. A Cricket in Times square – George Selden

18. Memory of Light – Robert Jordon

19. On the Shores of Silver Lake – Laura Ingalls Wilder

20. The long winter – Laura Ingalls Wilder

21. Little town in the prairie – Laura Ingalls Wilder

22. These Happy Golden Years – Laura Ingalls Wilder

23. The First Four Years – Laura Ingalls Wilder

24. Becoming Mrs. Lewis – Patti Callahan

25. The Inklings – Humphrey Carpenter

26. On Reading Well -Karen Swallow Prior

27. Gray Mountain – John Gresham

28. Penderwicks 3 – Jeanne Birdsall

29. Little Women – Louisa May Alcott

30. Little Men – Louisa May Alcott

31. Phantom Tollbooth – Norton Juster

32. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle -Betty MacDonald

33. Wait Until Next Year -Doris Kearns Goodwin

34. Mrs. Frisby and the rats of NIMH – Robert C. O’Brien

35. Light in the Attic – Shel Silverstein

36. Henry Huggins Clubhouse – Beverly Cleary

37. Peace Like a River – Leif Enger

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Filed under books, literature, reading

Oh boy

Wowziers. It’s been my longest break from blogging ever.

I’d do a quick year and a half rundown but there have been too many things both wonderful and terrible.

For example, on the terrible front, my younger brother Tim passed away suddenly last October. I’ve done some writing about that but didn’t feel like making it public on this blog.

On the wonderful front, we’ve finally started our homeschool adventure, with my oldest beginning kindergarten. Which means I’m both busy and also don’t really feel like blogging about homeschool all the time.

So for now I’ll leave you with this, I’ve been listening to some amazing podcasts on reading and writing well.

These podcasts introduced me to a few new favorite books. If you haven’t read “Peace Like a River” by Leif Enger, I can’t recommend it enough.

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Gold medal

I wanted to share some thoughts I posted yesterday on my Facebook page.

Driving to church this morning, I found myself thinking about last night’s game – AND BAWLING!

1. I was very tired.

2. I was thrilled with the outcome.

But more than anything:

3. Games like that, verses Canada, take me back to all the wonderful memories of college & dear friends that I am so incredibly grateful for.

While we had (have) a good natured rivalry, and I (15 years ago) had to give a nod to their 2 gold medal wins during my graduation speech, it’s mostly about friendship to me. Sibling love. Our closest ally.

From living there when 9-11 happened (and the fear of being stuck outside of your homeland when the borders closed) to the Salt Lake games or grieving the tragedy of the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster, there’s no other Country and friend I want on my side more.

To the True North, see you in Beijing 2022 ❤️

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Filed under canada, friends, friendship, hockey, olympics

Post Baby Heart Check

I had my post baby cardiology appointment on Friday. I had an Echo and then saw the cardiologist. She says everything looks great!

I did tell her I’ve been having (what seems like) more palpitations. It’s normal for me to have some and from what I described, she wasn’t worried.

She did say lack of sleep, stress, and sometimes caffeine can increase them. I’ve never noticed a specific correlation with caffeine, but lack of sleep and stress (or anxiety about having palpitations so I have more or notice them more) are part of life these days.

Other than the fantastic “see you in a year” doctor’s orders where as follows:

1. Get more sleep

2. Lose 10-15 lbs

Both of these are directly related to being a mom and having 3 kids.

More sleep shouldn’t be out of reach. I can easily adjust my bedtime and go to bed earlier.

The weight one however is so new to me. I’m actually right in line with “normal bmi”, but being a heart patient, I totally understand wanting to be on the lower end of normal.

She wants me at 130-135. We looked up what I weighed when I first came to see her 9 years ago. I was SHOCKED! Y’all. 112 pounds. That’s like being see through! Way too light for my 5′ 6” frame.

I figure in 9 years, with 3 kids and 1 heart surgery, 35+ pounds isn’t terrible considering my starting point.

Now that I’m middle age, it will take some effort. I’ve never had to be concerned with what I eat before. (And I do love candy!) My game plan to start with us drink more water, eat less carbs. I’ll do that for a while and then reevaluate my plan as needed.

Overall – I’m so pleased. Also – I love my Adult Congenital Heart Disease Cardiologist. She’s brilliant and funny and kind.

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Filed under baby, cardiology, health