AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: "I'm mad as hell and I'm not gonna take it anymore!" DATE: 9/08/2006 12:03:00 PM ----- BODY:
I'm not really that passionate about it, but I am moving. I'm packing up my blog and going to typepad. I have become so frustrated with Blogger than I can't take it anymore. I am unable to post on blogger sites that haven't switched to Beta. The photo option is down more than it is working and I feel constrained by Beta's "unable to..." commands. I'll leave this blog up for a while to direct traffic and pull any information I care to have on my new site. You can find me now at Please come over and visit.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Blogger 1: Traci 0 DATE: 9/07/2006 04:40:00 PM ----- BODY:
I had these grand plans today. I was going to post some great pictures from a party I went to Sunday. Now that Blogger is allowing edits of raw HTML, I was planning on a change in my page layout. I had every intention of cleaning out a few things and adding a few things.

Well, Blogger kicked my butt! Pictures will not upload. I tried to change my template and in the process, lost my color scheme. I tried to clean out a few of the miscellaneous buttons and lost my counter. I will stop for now, lest I lose my entire blog history.

I tell you this not to whine but to assure you that I was indeed planning on posting today (after an unusually extended absence).

The Blogger gods are not looking favorably upon me today.

On a side note: All you HTML template geeks out there need to get busy. None of the blogskins work on the Beta system. Consider me your head cheerleader! GO! GO! GO, GEEKS! GO!

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: On the road... DATE: 9/03/2006 11:46:00 AM ----- BODY:
Grab the photo hunt code or join the blogroll.

Jason and I borrowed Dad's Old Faithful pick up to gather a family heirloom and cart it home. (More on that later.) I shot this picture with my phone as we crossed the steel bridge and drove past a tobacco field. The perspective inside the perspective made me think of the history we carried in the bed of the old truck.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: "The crimnial justice system is represented by two seperate, but equally important groups..." DATE: 9/01/2006 10:48:00 AM ----- BODY:
Today was a first for me. I went to court.
On July 4th I got pulled over for violation of the Tennessee Move Over Law. Let me state for the blog record, that I was unaware there was such a law. I did indeed move over, out of courtesy and concern for the officer. However, according to the State Trooper, I did not move over far enough.
I've gotten tickets in the past for speeding. I've never been pulled over and wrongly charged. I always paid my ticket like a good citizen and went on my way. This time I chose to exercise my right and go to court. Did I mention the ticket was almost $200?
This morning I showed up at 9 am for General Sessions court. After almost an hour of names being called out and whispers at the judges bench, my name was called. (They went down the list alphabetically, of course.) The exchange went something like this:

"Mrs. Ward, do you have any outstanding tickets?"
"No, sir."
"You're going to traffic school, Mrs. Ward. Does that suit you?"
"Actually, Your Honor..."
"Mrs. Ward, pay the clerk the $50. Show up for 2 hours on Saturday and clear your record and don't do it again, please."
"Yes, Sir. Thank you, Sir."

Not exactly the epic courtroom declaration I had rehearsed in the car on the way over, but $50 is doable and I didn't have plans for Saturday anyway.

I should also mention that Big Tom Buchanan of Survivor:Africa was in the courtroom as well. Apparently, he had appeared at Elizabethton's Independence Day Parade and was ticketed as he left town. Big Tom didn't have to go to traffic school. His ticket was dismissed.
Maybe I should have worn my overalls.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Blue DATE: 8/28/2006 05:44:00 PM ----- BODY:
Grab the photo hunt code or join the blogroll.
September 22, 2005-Huntsville, AL.
We waited in the heat for hours to see a festival show. As the sun was setting, we laid down in the cool grass and watched this gorgeous rainbow fade above us.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: STORY by Steven James DATE: 8/28/2006 12:54:00 PM ----- BODY:
"Theology is the greatest threat to spiritual pilgrims when it becomes the game of defining God and gets in the way of letting God define you. I think the wonder tales - fantasies and fairy tales - lie closer to the heart of the...story because they acknowledge the reality of good and evil, the battle between right and wrong, the power of the supernatural, and the wonder of a world where dreams actually do come true.
If you try to divorce the mystery of Jesus from Christianity, you'll be left with just another religion, and a not very interesting one at that. Mystery lies at the heart of this story."

This book doesn't fit into any established category. It is an examination of the Christan faith, but far removed from the textbook style of writing often associated with such pursuits. It is poetry, metaphors and lyrics intermingled with spiritually grounded descriptions of the person of Jesus Christ.
Visit Steven James' website to get a taste of what this book offers.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: October DATE: 8/24/2006 01:55:00 PM ----- BODY: Speak to me in gentle tones of falling leaves and orange hues.

Spin a tale of whispering winds and crackling fires.

In your most cautious voice, explain the autumn season;

the quietening of Mother Nature, the closing in of winter.

Tell me why my spirit longs for this time.

Like a child’s eyes, slowing closing and opening,

drifting to that dreamlike place just outside of sleep,

I am drawn to October.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: How do you say...? DATE: 8/23/2006 02:54:00 PM ----- BODY:
I travel around the country with a diverse group of people. My closest friends are from Georgia, Texas and Oklahoma. I'm a Tennessee native and Hubby is a proud Ohioan. As you might imagine accents vary. Sometimes when we're driving a long stretch of road or it's late at night and we're running on very little sleep, we play a game called HOW DO YOU SAY...?
EX: How do you say the color that's a mixture of red and yellow. The school color of Tennessee and Texas?
Orange. Simple enough, right? Is that pronounced OR-enge? Or is it Arnge? Maybe its AR-enge?
What is the name of the curled pasta that kids eat with cheese? Macaroni.
MAC-a-ro-ni? mac-a-RO-ni?
You get the idea. A group of English farmers believe cows have regional accents, as well. And phonetics experts say the idea is not as far-fetched as it sounds. Human accents develop from familiarity. We tend to take on the speech patterns of those around us. According to experts, accents among cows probably develop in a similar way as among humans, and resulted from spending time with farmers with differing accents. (Read article here.)
I live in a rural community. Cows are part of the landscape here. I never paid much attention to their communications, but now when I see them gathering, I'll wonder. Are they playing a round of HOW DO YOU SAY...?
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Generation T DATE: 8/22/2006 09:37:00 AM ----- BODY:
Am I the only girl who wants a Tshirt that fits a girl's body? If you're one of the teeny-tiny Sisters, you can just check out. I'm talking to my LB girls, here.
I found this book a few days ago and I'm psyched. I have several boxy Tshirts that I can't wait to rip, pin, sew and gather to create the perfect American pop icon in a size 16.
If you're good with a needle and a bit creative, I highly recommend this book. I'll be posting pictures of my new creations soon.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Plotlines DATE: 8/22/2006 08:52:00 AM ----- BODY:
What if you could suddenly remember every detail of your past? What if the details to every experience, good and bad, were vibrant and clear to you?
I have a terrible memory; everything from 'where did I put my keys?' to 'today is your birthday?!?'. I am constantly writing myself notes and forgetting where I put the note. Jason often has to correct me when I relay a conversation. I tend to attribute quotes to the wrong person.
SPILLING CLARENCE by Anne Ursu is a book I currently have on my wish list. A chemical spill in the sleepy little town of Clarence causes an unusual reaction in the residents. They begin to remember things long forgotten. Not just recalling the events, but every minute detail of the past.
This plot fascinates me. Being some one who cannot remember anything, I am terrified at the thought of remembering EVERYTHING. I believe our minds operate as filters. I know my self-preserving psyche has closed doors best left sealed. But along with the bad, some good has been lost as well.
Imagine the ability to clearly remember that loved one who has long since been gone. I've forgotten the sound of my grandmother's voice. I might be willing to trade the pain behind sealed door number 1 to hear that sound again.
Your thoughts?
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Doing the iPod shuffle DATE: 8/19/2006 11:04:00 AM ----- BODY:
Barbara tagged me. The assignment was to shuffle your media player and HONESTLY post the first 20 songs that come up.
Diversity is a beautiful thing.

1. Jeopardy/Greg Kinh Band
What can I say? I'm a child of the 80's.
2. Mother and Child Reunion/Paul Simon
Have I mentioned, I LOVE Paul Simon?
3.Captain Jack/Billy Joel
4. Do You Know You Are My Sunshine?/Statler Brothers
Okay, say what you will, but nobody does four part harmony like the Statlers. My grandmother LOVED them and it stuck. Don't judge me.
5. Humble Me/Norah Jones
She increases the cool factor by at least 9%.
6. Hell or High Water/Tinsley Ellis
7. There's a Rainbow/Marty Stuart
Marty Freakin' Stuart!!!
8. Indigo-go/The Dingos
This was a local band Jason and I used to go hear back in the day. Wonder where they are now?
9. Rescue Me/Pushmonkey
10. Old Dan Tucker/Bruce Springsteen
Hayley learned this song in kindergarten. :)
11. Nothing At All/Third Day
Can't believe I got to 11 before Third Day showed up.
12. What Good/Third Day
13. Give Me Jesus/Fernando Ortega
Love this song. My friend Katie sings this song beautifully.
14. Fortunate Son [Live]/John Fogerty
Listening to CCR intantly makes any day a good day.
15. Bedtime/Disney soundtrack
It helps me sleep, okay?
16. Its About Time/Jamie Cullum
Jazz vocalists do it for me.
17. Forever I Love You/Statler Brothers
Are you judging me? Stop it.
18. That Where I Am, There You May Also Be/Rich Mullins
Rich Mullins was a master poet.
19. Atmosphere/Tobymac
Have you seen him live? You should.
20. Seriously Gone/Dan Baird
Ending with a hip alt country rock sound.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: "Anyone who has a library and a garden wants for nothing." - Cicero DATE: 8/18/2006 02:04:00 PM ----- BODY:
I found this little questionnaire on Karla's site. I love books. I love talking about books. So...let's talk about books I love.

1. Book that changed your life: Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller, Velvet Elvis by Rob Bell, Traveling Light by Max Lucado
2. Book that you've read more than once: A Christmas Carol by Dickens, I read it every year.
3. Book you'd want on a desert island: If you expect me to celebrate Christmas on this island, I'll need a copy of Dickens' Christmas Carol. For off season reading, Love Medicine by Louise Erdridge
4. Book that made you laugh: Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams, Praise Habit by David Crowder
5. Book that made you cry: My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult, Of Mice and Men by Stienbeck
6. Book that you wish had been written: To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee
7. Book you don't enjoy: The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold
8. Book you are currently reading: The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Spear, Tunneling by Beth Bosworth, and Middlesex by Jeffrey Eugenides
9. Book you've been meaning to read: Spilling Clarence by Ann Ursu, No Ordinary Time: Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt: The Home Front in World War II by Doris Kearns Goodwin
10. Book you remember as a real page-turner: Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult, The Pilot's Wife by Anita Shreve
11. Non-fiction books that you have enjoyed: The Greatest Generation by Tom Brokaw, Undaunted Courage by Stephen E. Ambrose, CASH by Johnny Cash
12. Children's books your family has loved: Where The Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak, Dr. Seuss' Horton Hears A Who ("I meant what I said and I said what I meant. An elephant is faithful one hundred percent." Words to live by.)

These are some of my more noble reading materials. I confess, I'm also a big fan of fluff. I love a good predictable mystery, science fiction is a mainstay for me and I find no shame in a quick read of short stories.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Fall 1986 DATE: 8/17/2006 02:45:00 PM ----- BODY:
Barbara challenged me to post a picture of myself from high school. It took a while to find one. I'm not much for keeping things from my teen years. Jason had this in a stack of old annual staff photos.
I have a terrible memory, but I recall clearly the moment this picture was taken. The back says Fall 1986.

Blogger is giving me a fit about posting pictures. Click on the teeny tiny photo and you can see a larger version compliments of Photo Bucket.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Ch-ch-ch-changes DATE: 8/17/2006 11:15:00 AM ----- BODY:
Blogger has decided to go Beta. I had thought at first we had a choice, then I read the fine print. We blogspotters will be required to convert to Beta evententually. So, might as well jump in, right? I'm working on getting it back to the same color scheme I had last time you were here. Any of you figured out how to post pictures on your sidebars? I'm at a loss. Advice welcome. Back to the mines....

**2 hours later.... Here is what I've found: Blogger is currently not allowing me to post pictures. Blogger is currently not allowing me to edit html in my upgraded template. What to do? What to do? I've decided to hold out on the template change until I can alter the layout to my satisfaction. As for the pictures, I'm working on that. I'll get back to you.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Life Lessons with Mr. Turtle DATE: 8/14/2006 04:53:00 PM ----- BODY:
I had a few short minutes to race home, then back to work.
I was speeding down the winding road toward my house when suddenly I slammed on the brakes. There he was, Mr. Turtle. I threw the car in park, hit the hazard lights and flung open the door. I ran to Mr. Turtle. I picked him up. He hissed at me, but that's only because he didn't understand the reason for such personal contact. I carried him across the hot asphalt and placed him on the other side of the road in the cool grass. I ran back to my car and continued on.
We should never be so busy we fail to notice those around us who might be struggling. Even when they hiss at you...
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Power Trippin' DATE: 8/11/2006 01:18:00 PM ----- BODY:
Mr. Richardson, my 11th grade Civics teacher, once said to my class, "If you learn nothing else in this year, learn this. Understanding this will serve you well in life."
Power tends to corrupt; absolute power corrupts absolutely. (An observation that a person’s sense of morality lessens as his or her power increases. The statement was made by Lord Acton, a British historian of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.)

I have learned all too well that Mr. Richardson was right on track.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Photo Scavenger Hunt DATE: 8/09/2006 01:20:00 PM ----- BODY:
Grab the photo hunt code or join the blogroll.
This week's theme: Money

This is what happens when a staff meeting goes too long and you have a wad of one dollar bills in your purse.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Key to Kokology DATE: 8/09/2006 01:03:00 PM ----- BODY:
If you read this, you might be interested in the following.
1. A DAY TO REMEMBER: Graduation ceremonies follow certain fixed patters, but ask ten different people to describe their impressions and it's probable that they'll describe ten different scenes. People naturally tend to focus on different aspects of the world and therefore find certain types of information easier to recall than others. The thing you remember about your graduation shows the area where your powers of recall are strongest.
a. The face of the principal: You have a special aptitude for remembering faces and names. Meet someone once, and you never need to be introduced again. That I skill that has stood you in good stead on more than one occasion, making people you barely know feel like valued friends.
b. The banner: You've got a strong head for figures-birthdays, telephone numbers, batting averages, the number of steps from your front door to the car. You might not remember the names of someone you ate lunch with last week, but you could probably recollect how muh you paid for the meal. Those powers of recall have hearned you a reputation as serious and dependable. After all, you never forget a date.
c. The ranks of students standing: You don't remember things so much as you reminisce about them. Your ability to recall a scene is inextricably tied to the emotions it aroused in you, and you can almost experience the efeelings again just by turning your minds eye that way. This allows you to replay and enjoy happy memories over and over again. But it also means you have difficulty forgiving and forgetting after you've been hurt.
d. The playing of the graduation march: Visual memories seem to fade quickly for you, but the things you hear and say are stored in a permanent file that you can access as easily as pulling a CD from the shelf. When your memory of an event is blurred, sometimes all it takes is hearing a snatch of a melody that was playing in the background at the time to cause the memories to come flooding back to you.
2. LOOK OUT BELOW: The sheltered life of a potted plant corresponds to the hidden guarded side of your character and the way you try to keep the world from penetrating your social mask.
a. The plant landed on the ground upright and intact: You appear to be strong and confident and are always eager to demonstrate your coolness under fire. But beneath that tough facade is a person more concerned with keeping up an image than actually living it.
b. The pot broke, but the plant seems to have survived the fall: You seem calm and unflappable to others, but the reality is you just hate to show your emotions. those pent-up feelings within you just keep growing and growing, and no pot can hold them forever.
c. The pot and the plant are both smashed beyond recovery: You seem to be soft-spoken and self-effacing, but that 'natural listener' is crying out for the chance to shine cnter stage. You are only waiting for the opportunity to break out of the silf-imposed mold that confines you.
d. For some strange reason, there is no sign of either the plant or the pot: You excel at generating excitement and making others laugh, and people see you as the life of the party (even when there's no party in town). But that glib exterior hides a seriousness and even a shy side that you choose not to show the rest of the world.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Smart is SEXY! DATE: 8/04/2006 03:05:00 PM ----- BODY:
Culture Vulture offers this report. There is such an up side to being a book worm. According to the report, half the people surveyed would look twice at someone based on their choice of reading materials. But before you head into the singles' scene armed with your favorite graphic novel, be warned. Erotic fiction, horror, self-help books and the dreaded chick-lit were all deemed turn-offs. The classics, biographies and modern literary fiction stir the most interest. I've said it before, I'll say it again: Smart is SEXY!
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Stayin' Alive DATE: 8/03/2006 04:56:00 PM ----- BODY:
Jason and I finally took a giant leap into the 1990's. We got cell phones. Sprint is the only service that works in our rural setting, so the choice of carriers was a simple one. We got these cute camera phones for free with the standard 2 year agreement. (Jason's is NOT pink, BTW. Mine is! :D)
I'm all excited about the free nights and weekends, of course. But what really got me going was the ringtones. My friend Jamie has a really cool program that allows you to turn any song into a ringtone. I was all about that. I even purchased a Bee Gees song from iTunes. My friend Bari requires a Bee Gees song.
The problem? I can't get the darn thing to work. I get the ringtone set, send it to my phone, but it won't download. Grrrr. Is the problem Sprint? I have no clue. What good is a kicky pink cell phone if I can't make it play the Bee Gees?
I'm open to suggestions...
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Kokology DATE: 8/03/2006 11:14:00 AM ----- BODY:
I'm a big fan of kokology. It's pop psychology in a party game. Try these: 1. A DAY TO REMEMBER: The flowers you wore to the prom are faded and brittle, an uncomfortable number of the faces in the yearbook look unfamiliar, and most of the things you learned in trigonometry seemed to vanish from your memory the instant you handed in the final to be graded. But some memories from high school stay fresh in everyone's minds, always readily available whenever the urge for a trip down memory lane should strike. Think back on your high school graduation ceremony. Which of the following images stands out most clearly in your mind? a. The face of the principal handing out diplomas and shaking hands b. The banner reading, "Congratulations Class of XXXX" c. The ranks of students standing proudly in their caps and gowns d. The playing of the graduation march
2. LOOK OUT BELOW: Keeping plants offers us the chance to give without any promise of reciprocation, gratitude, or reward. It's true that they ask for little-just some water and sunlight-but in a material sense they give even less in return. Nonetheless, houseplants enjoy a popularity that seems out of proportion to any decorative function they might perform. Perhaps we keep them because they fill a very human need; the need to be needed. A potted plant you've been keeping on your balcony falls over the ledge it was sitting on. You run outside to survey the damage. What do you see? a. The plant landed on the ground upright and intact. b. The pot broke, but the plant seems to have survived the fall. c. The pot and plant are both smashed beyond recovery. d. For some strange reason, there is no sign of either the plant or the pot.
Take the little quiz. Leave your answers in the comments and all will be revealed Monday.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Psych me! DATE: 8/01/2006 05:39:00 PM ----- BODY:
I followed the link on Karla's blog and took a personality test. I have to say, its pretty much dead on. I'm always amazed at how these simple test peg me so easily. I suppose I"m not as complicated as I like to pretend.
Scroll your mouse over the image to see how I scored. Anyone surprised by the results?
Genuine Visionary
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Hayley and Ruby DATE: 7/31/2006 03:03:00 PM ----- BODY:
Grab the photo hunt code or join the blogroll.
This week's theme: Animals
Hayley found this beautiful hummingbird lying on the ground near the lake. Of course, she couldn't just leave it there. She brought it home and tried her very best to nurse it back to health. Unfortunately, she wasn't able to save it. Ruby the hummingbird only lived 4 more days. We buried her in the backyard in a ceremony worthy of such a noble creature.
Ruby was a special experience for the whole family. How many little girls get to kiss a hummingbird?
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 7/29/2006 11:39:00 AM ----- BODY:
"Traci, do you ever wonder what other people are into?"
Yeah, Man. I check out This website allows you to search key words to find who's checking out what and where.
Harrison Ford is most popular in Atlanta, GA. Blog skins searches are all the rage in Mylasia. Salt Lake City, UT leads the way in searches for Star Wars toys. Austin, TX peaks the chart for Dell laptop information.
Go to the site and see what people all around the world think is cool.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: ASL in the spotlight DATE: 7/28/2006 08:23:00 AM ----- BODY:
Six years ago, when I came to work for this organization they were building a new website. My new boss was bopping around with his digital camera taking pictures of everyone and everything. I asked him more than once to please not post my picture on the website.
Several days later, a friend called to comment on the site. "Nice picture of you," he said. I quickly logged on the site. There I was, in full color. I went into nitro-panic mode. I skipped all the fun build to panic attack sypmtoms (nausea, anxiety, dizziness ) and went right into hyperventilation. I called my supervisor and begged him to intervene. I could not calm down until I knew the picture was down. I know most of my co workers never understood my issue. I'm not sure I understand it all.
There is a trust factor. There is an issue of control.
That was 6 years ago. Today I am taking a huge step. I am inviting you to view my ASL films on YouTube. Most of the songs are by one of my favorite bands, Third Day. The other 2 are songs I love to sign.
Innocent Give Cry Out To Jesus Your Love Oh Lord Love Song If You Want Me To Give Me Jesus
I hope you love the songs, but if you don't, its fine. I believe this little project was for my benefit.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Rock N Roll ACTION DATE: 7/27/2006 11:17:00 AM ----- BODY:
Grab the photo hunt code. Join the blogroll.
The theme this week is ACTION. I considered several different subjects and decided on a concert photo. The energy level at a Third Day show is off the charts! Rock ACTION! I snapped this photo of Mark Lee in Arlington TX in July 2005. I posterized and tinted it for a 70's rock poster vibe.
Sorry the Saturday Scavenger Hunt photo was posted on a Thursday. I'll do better next week, I promise. You can join the Scavenger Hunter by clicking here.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: As Promised...Jason's review of THE RACONTUERS DATE: 7/21/2006 02:24:00 PM ----- BODY:
OLD BUT NEW AGAIN The hardest part about trying to describe an album you have already read multiple reviews of is not repeating what you have already read. The Raconteurs have received so much press due to the membership of Jack White that it feels like you know their debut album before you even listen to it. You have probably read reviews with descriptions such as “righteous” and “clever”. Those descriptions are certainly true here. Many reviews have stated that White, Brendan Benson, and the rhythm section have concocted a mixture of styles from the 1970s. While it is true you hear echoes of Thin Lizzy, Zepplin (“Store Bought Bones”), Foghat, and even a little early Black Sabbath (the title track, “Broken Boy Soldier”), I think this album pays more tribute to the Beatles than anyone else. The first track, “Steady , As She Goes” is as tightly crafted as anything the Fab Four recorded in the Rubber Soul/Revolver days; and if you don’t find yourself tapping your foot, then you may be rhythmically challenged. The second track, “Hands” sounds like the Beatles if Lennon and McCartney had grown up listening to Kurt Cobain (that’s a good thing, by the way). “Intimate Secretary” could have come from Sgt. Pepper and “Together” sounds as if someone found an unused demo from Let It Be and turned it over to the Raconteurs to finish. Now this may sound like I am taking something away from the band, but I’m not. It is almost impossible to record anything in rock/pop music and not have it influenced by the Beatles. The comparison is made easier here due to the format of two guitars, bass, drum as well as two vocalists who play off each other well. It sounds as though these guys have been working together for years instead of being a new band. Somehow, they manage to make these familiar sounds seem fresh. Credit the rhythm section of Jack Lawrence and Patrick Keeler for keeping everything grounded while the guitars and vocals sometimes soar above the songs themselves. The only song that seems a misstep is the closing track, “Blue Veins”. Someone explain to me this current trend of having albums end on downbeat somber notes. Every so often, someone has to record an album of solid, unpretentious, non-gimmicky songs that reminds us why rock music is the worldwide force it is. If you are looking for that album, then the Raconteurs have it ready for you.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 7/21/2006 11:22:00 AM ----- BODY:
"So, tell me, Traci. Any of the new fall line up catch your attention?"
"Yeah, Man!"
NBC's new show HEROES has me jazzed. I'm a sucker for a superhero story. I love the idea of the ordinary person finding the exrtraordinary inside themselves. (In this case, with a little help from a solar eclipse and a renegade scientist.)
Understand, I have no inside scoop. I am not saying this show will be great. I am only believing in the possibilities.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Perspectives... DATE: 7/21/2006 10:52:00 AM ----- BODY:
Yesterday I spent about 2 hours in front of the camera. I filmed about 6 songs, 4 of which I'm happy with. The filming went well. Its so frustrating to get 3 minutes and 12 seconds into a 3 1/2 minute song and hit yourself in the eye while trying to look graceful. The vids will be edited this weekend (hopefully) and be posted by mid week. Don't hold me to that, I'm using free labor.

You know what anorexia is, right? Not the the eating disorder side of it, the mental picture side of it. Anorexics see themselves as fat no matter how thin they are. Whatever the opposite of that is, I have it. I looked at the person on the video monitor and thought, "Who is THAT?" I swear it didn't look anything like me.

I'm not fishing for compliments here. (You're kind, but really, don't bother.) What fascinates me is the distorted view we have of ourselves. Can I be honest and tell you something? I think I look better than I did on that screen.

My friend Pope and I decided its just an overload of positive self image. I imagine its a matter of perspective. When I am on the inside looking out, I feel confident. I like me. I could make some improvements, certainly, but as a whole I am happy with me. But when the angle is altered, when I'm on the outside looking in (in this case through a video monitor), its a different picture.

Tell me. Am I alone on this? Is this just a woman thing? Does your self confidence get a bit banged up when your view changes?

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Wordless Wednesday DATE: 7/19/2006 10:13:00 AM ----- BODY: photo by Jason Ward -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Lights! Camera! Music! Panic! DATE: 7/18/2006 04:42:00 PM ----- BODY:
Thursday I begin a new project. I'm excited and so nervous I'm about to hyperventilate just thinking about it. I will chose several songs by one of my favorite bands, Third Day, and video myself interpreting them. I plan to post the videos on Youtube. I chose Third Day because I know all their songs by heart and this offers a certain level of comfort. I also am counting on the support of my friends and fellow fans. Why so nervous? I've been interpreting for almost 8 years now. I have interpreted for large church services, funerals, weddings and important medical situations. But, I don't like to be recorded. There it is. Every flaw. Every misstep. Every amateur error for everyone to see. Interpreting a song is taking the song and making it your own. I, as in interpreter, make certain assumptions about the writers intent. My eyes and facial expressions must portray the emotion of the song or it becomes flat. I know I'll have nightmares. I'm at a meet and greet. Mac Powell walks toward me, frowning. "Hi Mac!" I'll say, smiling. He'll shake his head disapprovingly. "What you did with my song, Traci...not cool. Not. Cool."
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 7/14/2006 03:10:00 PM ----- BODY:
The Yeah, Man! for today?

Check out The Raconteurs. Their CD is amazing. (Hopefully Jason will write a review this weekend and I'll post it soon. My CD reveiws are so lame. ) Aside from a great CD, they have this super geek cool website. All you oldschool DOS fans will love it.
Check it out. Play around with the site and enjoy some tunes and videos.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Scare Tactics DATE: 7/14/2006 02:52:00 PM ----- BODY:
I was talking to a friend the other day. She was telling me that her husband loves horror movies. I said I didn't understand why. Why would you enjoy being scared? I really don't get that. Today, I watched a NBC promo and I tasted the bitterness of my own words. I think maybe I do like to be frightened in my own weird way. Vincent D'Onafrio is one of my favorite actors. I just love watching him. He fascinates me. Yes, I think he's sexy. (Its not all about the acting skills, is it , girls?) Want to know the dirty little secret? He scares me. Truly. I feel sure if I ever found myself in the same room with him, I would begin to cry, because that's what I do when I'm scared. Not scared as in being afraid to approach a famous person. I mean frightened, terrified. And yet, I watch his movies and never miss him on Law & Order: CI. Maybe I understand the horror movie junkies better than I thought.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: What I am is what I am DATE: 7/13/2006 08:57:00 AM ----- BODY:
While trying to answer a questions posed on the comments of this post, I came across this little quiz.
I may not know what I'm to be called, but at least I have my color scheme right.

Your Blog Should Be Purple

You're an expressive, offbeat blogger who tends to write about anything and everything. You tend to set blogging trends, and you're the most likely to write your own meme or survey. You are a bit distant though. Your blog is all about you - not what anyone else has to say.
What Color Should Your Blog or Journal Be?

Although I take issue with that last sentence...
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Wordless Wednesday DATE: 7/12/2006 08:41:00 AM ----- BODY: photo by Jacinda Applewaite -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Nice Guys Finish Last DATE: 7/10/2006 04:47:00 PM ----- BODY: Green Day sang it. Leo Durocher said it. (or did he?)
Well, they're wrong. You want proof? These are two of the nicest guys you'll ever meet.
It's a great testimony to character, when the first thing anyone says at the mention of your name is, "He is such a GREAT guy".
This is my Jason and David Carr.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Purple Haze-stacks DATE: 7/07/2006 04:44:00 PM ----- BODY:
You'll notice a change around here today. I liked the previous color scheme, but it felt a little gender nuetral. I like being a girl!
Purple was a fine choice, I thought. Purple snipits: If you care, Wikipedia has some great insight on the purple vs violet debate. Harold and the Purple Crayon is one of my favorite childrens books. Nothing rhymes with purple. (I think turtle is darn close, though...)
So enjoy the purpleness of it all. Say nice things about it in the comments section. :)
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 7/07/2006 02:43:00 PM ----- BODY:
Hey, Traci! Ever have those random thoughts that never quite get where they're going? Yeah, Man! Cool things I should have already told you about. 1) iPod 5th generation users NEED this program. Handbrake allows you to upload your DVDs to iPod. I own these things! They're mine! I should be able to watch them anytime I please. 2) Personal mini-fans are gay. I grant you that, but when its 102 degrees in the shade. They rock. So unless you're looking to impress one of the 11,000 people surrounding you at the next outdoor rock show, pack one!
3) Cool chick music: Edie Brickell/Volacano 4) Thai tea. Not telling you this long ago is my most grievous misstep. Thai tea is a strong brewed iced tea with a shot of half and half. Creamy and energizing. Seek it out. I give and give around here. How about you tell ME something cool I don't know about? Come on, people. Dazzle me!
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The Coolest Birthday EVAH! DATE: 7/02/2006 09:09:00 AM ----- BODY:
This has been the coolest birthday to date! My favorite band led 11,000 people in wishing me a happy birthday. How cool is THAT?!?! This first one is Sarah's video. Thanks for catching it, Sarah. :) This is the same clip from Jason's persecptive. See the camera man waving at me? I was on the big screen. Yes, I was. :)
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 6/29/2006 03:49:00 PM ----- BODY:
Blogs are nothing if not self-indulgent. Keep that in mind...

"Traci, are you planning a big birthday celebration?" Yeah, Man!

Today's Yeah, Man! is...well...ME! Sunday is my 37th birthday and I'm leaving you with this post as I go off to celebrate. Jason is taking me away for the weekend. He promises fun surprises to mark the occasion.

Every birthday is a gift, every year a precious treasure. It doesn't matter if you're 16 or 60, CELEBRATE!!!

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Uncle Fluffy's not too chocolatey chocolate cake DATE: 6/26/2006 02:31:00 PM ----- BODY:
Have you ever noticed that chocolate cake can be a tad weighty? Don't get me wrong, I love chocolate, but sometimes its just too much of a good thing.
Try this recipe.

1 box of white cake mix
1 box chocolate instant pudding
1/3 cup cold milk
1 package chocolate chips
1 container Cool Whip
Add pudding mix, chocolate chips and milk to the cake mix. Prepare according to cake mix instructions.
After the cake cools, top it with cool whip and a handfull of chocolate chips.

This is a nice, lighter alternative to a heavy, iced chocolate cake.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 6/21/2006 04:29:00 PM ----- BODY:
"Traci, do you know any cool ways to discover new sounds?"
Yeah, Man!

Like a good little lemming, I joined I'm digging it so far. My favorite feature is the personal radio station set up. Type in the names of a few of your faves and it plays music similar to those artists. Pretty cool way to discover new bands (and genres, if you're bold). Apparently, I should be into a group called Spoon. I'll delve into that a bit more.
My least favorite feature? It's so public. There it is! My playlist! For all the world to see!
So, in the spirit of submersion therapy, I have posted the updating chart on my sidebar. What does it tell you about me this week?
Check out and tag me as a friend. I'm Calicogirl, BTW.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The Supreme Court ROCKS DATE: 6/20/2006 11:54:00 AM ----- BODY:
(June 6, 2006)
Paul Reed Smith Guitars has announced that the United States Supreme Court today denied Gibson Guitar's final appeal of a Court of Appeals decision upholding PRS' right to make a single cutaway-style guitar.
Read the article here.
I confess, I know nothing about guitars. I'm one of the 'idiots' who wouldn't be able to tell the difference. But Jason mentions this lawsuit from time to time and I thought I would make some 'see I pay attention!' points with this post.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 6/16/2006 08:40:00 AM ----- BODY:
"So, Traci, do you know any cool artists?" Yeah, Man! Vanessa Wright Hollifield is an incredibly gifted artists I met this spring. Her use of color and shape will amaze you. She creates works based on scripture. The inspiration for each piece is brought to life in a graceful display of words and color. "My work is an expression of faith through art...Nothing says it better than the color, clarity, and texture of glass." Check out her site. Browse. Buy. She sometimes sends me pictures of her newest pieces. I considered sharing them with you here, but I'm selfish. I want to possess them a bit longer before they go up on her site and I am made to share. You'll just have to forgive me.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Those crazy kids! DATE: 6/14/2006 01:37:00 PM ----- BODY:
When it came out in Britain in December, the Mosquito sound system was supposed to be the sonic equivalent of a "no loitering" sign. Its annoying, high-pitched sound -- which many adults can't hear but most young people can -- would act as a teen repellent.
Now, teens are staging a worldwide rebellion: Downloading the sound, or another ring tone in that same high-frequency range, allows them to hear their cellphones ring when their parents and teachers (mostly) cannot.
Read the article here.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Matthew 6:21 DATE: 6/13/2006 10:35:00 AM ----- BODY:
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also." Matthew 6:21 KJV
Notice Jesus didn't say, 'where your heart is, you will put your treasure'. No, the treasure comes first, the heart follows.
On a spiritual level, our treasures and hearts are toward Heaven. Our blessings are to be shared with the intent of winning others to Christ. Our hearts should long for the day we are with Him. Most Christians understand this and have no trouble showing proof of this attitude in their lives.
But what about the practical less spiritual applications? Where are your treasures while you're here? Careful what you invest your treasures in. Your time. Your money. Your emotions. Because your heart will surely follow.
The Message says it this way: It's obvious, isn't it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.
Over the last few days, I've been thinking about where my treasure is and where I want to end up being. I'll be making a few changes around my storehouse and a course correction or two.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Late night alert DATE: 6/12/2006 04:48:00 PM ----- BODY:
Two of newest faves are making the late night scene this week.
Tonight, June 13: Cat Power - David Letterman (CBS)
Wednesday, June 14: KT Tunstall - Jay Leno (NBC)
And an old friend from high school...
Thursday, June 15: Echo & the Bunnymen - Craig Ferguson (CBS)
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Over The Hedge DATE: 6/12/2006 12:21:00 PM ----- BODY:
Jason and I saw this movie over the weekend and we loved it. Honestly, I can't remember the last time I laughed so much at a movie theatre. A family of hibernating creatures awakens to spring and begin preparing for the gathering of food for the oncoming winter (273 days 'til winter!). Only to discover STEVE. STEVE is the hedge, designed to keep wilderness and suburban sprawl humanely separated. It is the formula animation film. All the standard moral lessons apply: Family is most important. Good prevails. Even the worst among us is not beyond redemption. Real beauty is inside. Etc. Dreamworks doesn't take any real chances in this film. The characters are tailor made for the actors giving them voice. Gary Shandling's Vern the turtle is the cautious leader of this interspecies family. Bruce Willis is the cocky, swaggering con man (con racoon?) who leads them all into danger. Steve Carrell is the ADHD squirrel. The angry black skunk is voiced by Wanda Sykes. Eugene Levy and Catherine O'Hare play the parents of a nice midwestern porcupine family, complete with triplets. Avril Lavigne's turn as Heather the teenage opossum is dead on. (Pun intended.) William Shatner steals the show as Ozzie, the opossum who takes great pride in playing dead. He doesn't just play dead, he PLAYS dead. Ozzie has that Shakespearean quality that lends itself to a long and dramatic death scene. Go see this movie.
Some of my favorite lines to watch for: "You're the devil." Vern "But I like the cookie!" Hammy "Rosebud..." Ozzie
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: U2 iPod DATE: 6/06/2006 03:03:00 PM ----- BODY:
Apple continues their partnership with the Irish rockers. The special edition iPod is a standard 5th generation with 30GB, storage for 7,500 songs, 25,000 photos and 75 hours of video.
What isn't standard? The color scheme: a sleek black casing with a red wheel. Still trying to decide what to have laser engraved on the back of your new toy? The U2 iPod settles that for you. Engraved on the back are the signatures of the band. This model also comes with access to an exclusive 30 minute U2 video. If you were holding out for the next big iPod thing...this is it! Check it out here.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Bruce Springsteen - We Shall Overcome: The Seeger Sessions DATE: 6/05/2006 10:11:00 AM ----- BODY:
Bruce Springsteen was the voice of my teenage years. His music was the soundtrack for midnight rides on backroads with the windows down. Singing "no retreat, no surrender" at the top of our voices. "We learned more from a three minute record, baby, than we ever learned in school." That voice, raw and still undomesticated sings a different song now. Springsteen has released WE SHALL OVERCOME: The Seeger sessions. I will not pretend to have a vast knowledge of folk music or Pete Seeger's catalog. Others, more qualified, can address the resurgence of the folk movement and Springsteen's contribution. I speak from a purely emotional stand point. (The same way I review all music.) I love this album! I love the comfort of it. I am thrilled that Springsteen has followed me into adulthood with an album of stories and history. The ballads Jesse James and Mrs. McGrath bring you to a campfire as the gifted storyteller recounts the life of a famous outlaw and a wounded seaman. The Dixieland Jazz sound of Jacob's Ladder sends the Gospel tune into a new genre of undefined boozey, rowdy religion. My favorite track, O Mary Don't You Weep falls into that undefined category as well. Should you dance? Lift your arms in praise? Or raise your glass? All options are open to you. The rebellious spirit I fell in love with 20+ years ago is not absent. Pay Me My Money Down, Eyes On The Prize and the title track all speak to that spark that never really leaves us once ignited. Did Bruce follow me into adulthood or did I follow him? Did he push me? I can't say for sure. But either way we both seem to be shining in this new station of life. I think I'll go for a drive, roll down the window and sing out, "Froggy went a courtin', and he did ride, uh huh/Sword and pistol by his side, uh huh..."
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 6/02/2006 09:04:00 PM ----- BODY:
Today's Yeah, man! goes out to my friend Jamie. Question: Are you willing to go ALL out? Are you ready to humiliate yourself on the world wide web to win a meet and greet? Are you prepared to go the distance? Answer: Yeah, man!

Jason suggest a caption contest. Any takers? Caption this picture of Jamie. WINNER gets a 'pirate-y' prize. Come on! You know you want to....

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The guardians of Campbell's Dairy DATE: 6/01/2006 05:29:00 PM ----- BODY: -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: X3: The Last Stand (4 out of 5) DATE: 5/27/2006 12:59:00 PM ----- BODY:
X3 begins 20 years in the past. We watch Charles Xavier (a digitally remastered Patrick Stewart looking fantastic at 45!) and Eric/Magneto encounter Jean Grey for the first time. Jean Grey is the most powerful of all mutants. She has immense and undetermined powers even at a young age. Fast-forward 10 years. A young boy, the future Angel, works frantically with cutting tools and bandages to rid himself of his mutation. He awkwardly saws away the sprouting wings on his back. His father discovers him and is obviously disappointed his son is not human. Fast forward again to the not so distant future. The young boy’s father has created a cure for mutation. One injection will reverse the cellular damage, turning mutants into humans. Magneto rallies an army of mutants to destroy the now weaponized cure. The usual suspects, Mystique and Pyro are joined by Juggernaut, Multiple Man and various other militant mutants. Jean Grey returns from the grave as Phoenix. Jean’s alter ego joins Magneto. A civil war among mutants begins. I give X3 4 stars. It accomplished the goal of a good comic book adaptation. It kept the geeks happy with subtle references and true to the history characters and it entertained an X Men novice such as myself. My favorite scene in the film occurs in the final battle sequence. Wolverine, Storm and Beast find themselves staring at three vials of the cure. The camera pans as each character looks to the vial, then to their companions. Storm voiced her opinion when a cure was announced. “There’s nothing to cure! There’s nothing wrong with you!” Beast countered, “Some of us cannot hide as easily as others.” A sharp contrast is made between Storm’s obvious beauty and Beast’s blue-skinned furriness. Wolverine’s reaction carries the most impact. Taking the cure would not make him human. His skeletal alterations were done surgically. As Wolverine stares at the antidote for mutation, we see a longing for what can never be: normality. Highlights: *Kelsey Grammar as Dr. Henry McCoy: The Character of Beast had the potential of becoming (for lack of a better word) cartoonish. Grammar’s portrayal of Beast allowed the human side of the furry blue creature to shine through effortlessly. *If you are a Hugh Jackman fan, this entire film is a highlight. He is the star. Lowlights: *The Jean Grey scenes were a bit too “Carrie-at-the-prom”. She levitates and glows red as her hair swirls around her. Objects and people shatter. *Rattner-ism. Director Brett Rattner cannot resist a bad one-liner. He loves to remind us he was once a 14-year-old boy. *Magneto telepathically picks up and moves the Golden Gate Bridge. This seemed a bit over the top, even for a comic book movie. But as Jason pointed out, “It is Ian McKellan. And you know how much the old queen loves the drama.” Go see X3. It’s worth the price of admission. A few asides: *We owe Brett Rattner an apology. (We made some rather vicious RUSH HOUR jokes.) *The special effects people impressed my hubby with the true to character fighting style of Beast. *Why does Wolverine’s shirt disintegrate but his pants are indestructible? *“Here comes the message! Don’t miss the message! This is the message!” –Nitpicker’s Guide ST:TNG Other reviews here. View the trailer here.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The Way I See It #70 DATE: 5/25/2006 12:31:00 PM ----- BODY:
"It's difficult for people to get rid of junk. They get attached to things and let them define who they are. If there's one thing I've learned in this business, it's that you are what you can't let go of." - Brian Scudamore, Founder and CEO of 1-800-GOT JUNK?

What can't you let go of? What are you? Are you satisfied with your answer? No? What are you planning on doing about it?
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Christmas in May DATE: 5/20/2006 11:59:00 PM ----- BODY:
Jason and I had the opportunity to travel to Atlanta this weekend to sing in a Gomer choir. Third Day fans from around the country met in a recording studio with the band and provided backing vocals, encouragement and some Christmas spirit for the upcoming release. After the session, I had a few questions for guitarist Mark Lee. Click on the audio button below to hear the mini-interview.

Thanks to everyone involved for involving us.

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: DATE: 5/20/2006 09:26:00 PM ----- BODY:
this is an audio post - click to play
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Stay tuned... DATE: 5/20/2006 09:23:00 AM ----- BODY:
this is an audio post - click to play
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 5/19/2006 09:51:00 AM ----- BODY: "Are you into that whole introspective thing, Traci?" "Yeah, man!" Check out Sarah's post about LIFE LISTS. Take inventory of your life. You might learn something about yourself. Here are some excerpts from my LIFE LIST. You can learn something about ME. 1. Visit Ireland 2. Hear Paul Simon sing LIVE 3. Become an American Sign Language interpreter [check] 4. Write a devotional for girls 5. Take voice lessons 6. Sell something I've written 7. Be published on NPR [check] 8. Learn to play an instrument 9. Attend a movie premiere 10. Take an art history class 11. Read The Complete Works of Shakespeare [check] 12. Take a part in a community theatre production 13. See a cure for Rhumatoid Arthritis 14. Understand complex baseball plays 15. Celebrate my 50th wedding anniversary 16. See Paris again I would appreciate it so much more now 17. See a play on Broadway 18. Grow a breath taking tulip garden 19. Learn to swing dance 20. Design a line of hip bohemian clothes -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Asides DATE: 5/18/2006 02:41:00 PM ----- BODY: *I'm changing my hair style...again. I'm thinking of this.

If I cut my hair like this, will I look all dreamy and distant, too?

*I'm headed to Atlanta Saturday to see these guys.

What could be better? Seeing THESE guys...

Feel better soon, Bari. We need you!

*I'm seriously digging my new laptop, a Dell inspiron 6400. This puppy ROCKS. More on that later.

* One of these days I'm going to learn to swing dance. I think its just the coolest thing!

*Jason told me the other day I need something more hip on my CD list. He said my 'list of old guys' made me seem old. I like THE KILLERS. Does that make me hip?

"Unless you're touring the kitchen with the Royal Shakespeare Company, you can stop with the asides." -Will, Will & Grace

-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The incredible edible egg! DATE: 5/17/2006 03:42:00 PM ----- BODY:
It's been that kind of day. You know the kind? When this sort of thing makes you laugh hysterically...
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Guru thinking DATE: 5/10/2006 11:18:00 AM ----- BODY:
In an interview with NPR, Paul Simon relayed this discussion he had with a 'guru' friend.
"We start to talk and I say, 'What actually is going on? Because the stuff that I'm saying to myself sometimes is pretty nasty. And its interfering...Its interfering with a lot of stuff. '. I was particularly talking about work, but actually it interferes with a lot of stuff. And he said, "You know, that's a very typical thing and it happens with writers all the time. Its the inner voice and the inner voice is extremely harsh and very arrogant and very negative. And because you hear it from inside you, you think its true, because its coming from inside you.'. 'But', he said, 'its not really true.' He said, "This is my trick. Take a voice that you think is very funny. I don't know what voice you think is funny....But let's say its Buggs Bunny. And take that voice and put it on the sole of your shoe and then say all these negative things that you have to say. Let it come from that place. Then you'll get the perspective about how much you should pay attention to that." I've found it a very interesting, useful piece of thinking."
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Half of my mistakes DATE: 5/09/2006 10:26:00 AM ----- BODY:
There has been a reoccuring theme in my life over the last few days: Regrets. I had a conversation with a friend about the ever popular statement, "If I had it to do over again...". On my Google homepage I found this article waiting for me this morning. A preacher reminded me recently to worry for nothing, but pray about all things. And finally, last night Radney Foster offered the following words of wisdom.
Half of My Mistakes written by Radney Foster
Half of my mistakes I made stone cold sober
Half of my mistakes I made at closing time
Half the time I never saw it coming till it was over
Half of my mistakes I made with love on the line
Half of my mistakes I swear I should've known better
Half of my mistakes were made just among friends
You get a little distance on it, truth gets clearer
Half of my mistakes, hell I'd probably make 'em again
If I had it all to do over, I'm sure I'd win and lose just as much
But I'd spend a lot less time on right and wrong
And a lot more time on love
Half of my mistakes I made cause I was moving too quickly
Half of them were made cause my heart moved too slow
Nobody can tell you a damn thing if you ain't listening
Half of my mistakes I made because I couldn't let go
Half of my mistakes I'd give anything to change how it ended
Half of my mistakes, God I wouldn't change a single thing
You can lean to hard on regret, but I don't recommend it
Cause half the good things in my life came from half of my mistakes
Yeah, a lot of good things in my life came from half of my mistakes
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Late night alert DATE: 5/08/2006 04:41:00 PM ----- BODY:
Wilco is scheduled to appear on Late Night with Conan O'Brien on Friday, May 12. Plan to stay up late or set your VCR or program your TiVo or whatever it is you do. Just don't miss it. :)
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 5/05/2006 10:59:00 AM ----- BODY:
"Do you like country music?"
"Yeah, Man!"
I like REAL country music. I like the sounds of altcountry, cowpunk, insurgent country...whatever it is. You can start here for a taste of the altcountry sound.
With socially aware lyrics, low polish production and a pedigree of rock, punk and Hank Williams, Sr. these artists operate outside the Nashville music machine. You may have to go off the beaten path to find them, but its a journey worth taking.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: A Nationald Day of Prayer DATE: 5/04/2006 11:08:00 AM ----- BODY: -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: I've been hit! DATE: 5/03/2006 01:49:00 PM ----- BODY:
Barbara tagged me!
1. Never in my life: have I been as content as I am now
2. The one person who can drive me nuts, but then can always manage to make me smile: Hayley, my niece
3. High School was: Just a blip on the radar screen
4. When I'm nervous: I giggle
5. My hair: Is in the in-between stages of short and long.
6. When I was 5: My parents divorced
7. Last Christmas: Jason gave me a 5th generation video iPod. :)
8. When I turn my head left, I see: Photos of the people I love
9. I should be: Paying bills
10. When I look down I see: my little fat, bare feet
11. The craziest recent event was: losing Jamie. (Don't disappear w/o calling in first!)
12. If I were a character on Friends I'd be: Phoebe, I guess, (more so than any other)
13. I have a hard time understanding: people who are NEVER satisfied
14. Take my advice: Chose wisely, the man you love
15. My ideal breakfast is: Biscuits and gravy
16. If you visit the place I grew up: You would think you had gone back in time
17. If you spend the night at my house: Jason will make you pancakes for breakfast
18. I'd stop my wedding if: I didn't laugh at least once during the ceremony
19. The world could do without: bigotry and hate in the name of God
20. Most recent thing you've bought yourself: 2 skirts (very 80's!)
21. Most recent thing someone else bought for you: My aunt just handed me a Winnie and friends coffee mug
22. My favorite blonde is: Bari
23. My favorite brunette is: Jason
24. The last time I was drunk was: too long ago to remember.
25. The animals I would like to see flying besides birds are: Thinking about this one just weirds me out!
26. I shouldn't have been: so hard on myself
27. Last night I: played Nancy Drew computer games with Hayley
28. There's this girl I know who: is about to take Nashville by storm!
29: I don't know: why I think anyone would be interested in these answers. :)
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Da Vinci, magic tricks and the American way DATE: 5/02/2006 03:34:00 PM ----- BODY:
I know, I know. It's been almost 2 weeks since I peeked around the corner. I'll just use the old standby, "I've been busy" and we can leave it at that, okay? I went to the polls today. It's the primary for local positions; County Mayor, Sheriff, Councilmen, etc. As I approached the doors of the school gymnasium, I was rushed by campaigners trying to hand me stickers, pens, and cards. I waved them away with a smile. "No need," I said. "I've already made my choices. Thank you, no." I walked on to the booth, did my civic duty and went on my way. I thought about the uproar over The DaVinci code. Why do I not get myself in a knot about these things? Because I've already made my choices. Had I approached the polling station with doubt, those outside might have swayed me. A candidate with a smile and a firm handshake might have gotten my attention long enough to get my vote. I'm looking forward to seeing The DaVinci Code in the theatre this month. I've made my choices about what I beleive. No slick presentation will change my mind. But like the Constable running for re-election who was doing magic tricks for the voters, it may entertain me for a while.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: The Capitol Albums Vol. 2 DATE: 4/19/2006 11:12:00 AM ----- BODY:
Most bands issue 1 album a year. In 1965 Capitol released 4 American Beatles records. (The American versions differed from their British counterparts. Different philosophies and economics created a dual market.) These vinyl treasures were never released on CD. The Early Beatles (March 22), Beatles VI (June 14), HELP soundtrack (August 13) and Rubber Soul (December 6) are now being offered in a CD box set. Many of the songs from THE EARLY BEATLES were recorded and released in 1962 and 1963 by VJ Records. After Capitol signed the Fab Four, VJ re-released these raw recordings in an attempt to take advantage of their increasing fame. Capitol sued and VJ Records eventually signed away all rights to The Beatles in a small settlement agreement. That will go down in history as the worst business deal ever made. There is no version of BEATLES VI in England. Capitoal took songs from the Beatles For Sale (British edition) and created the American album BEATLES VI. After scavenging from British releases and left over soundtrack cuts the executives were still short 2 songs. The Beatles went into the studio to record and flesh out the album. They used 2 Larry Williams songs from their live show. BAD BOY is the stand out. The HELP soundtrack released in America was a true soundtrack album. It featured 8 Beatles songs and 4 instrumental pieces performed by George Martin and his Orchestra. The opening track combines two 60's icons, James Bond and the Beatles. Does it get any better than that? RUBBER SOUL is considered by many to be the Beatles first great album. This recording was offered in the US with a MONO and a STEREO mix. The box set offers both. RUBBER SOUL was the last album The Beatles allowed Capitol so much creative control. 1965 is my favorite era of Beatles history. I like the raw, simplicity of TWIST AND SHOUT and the playfulness of HELP. The folky rock of RUBBER SOUL is skirting the edge of disinterest for me. (I think its the sitar.) I'll be putting pennies aside for this purchase. Lots and lots and lots of pennies.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Stop selling God short! DATE: 4/19/2006 10:05:00 AM ----- BODY:
Have you seen that Tshirt little kids wear? It reads, in childlike scrawl, "GOD DON"T MAKE JUNK". Cute, huh? But how many of us believe that? Oh yes, you shaped me first inside, then out; you formed me in my mother's womb. I thank you, High God-you're breathtaking! Body and soul, I am marvelously made! I worship in adoration-what a creation! You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; you know exactly how I was made, bib by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something. Like an open book, you watched me grow from conception to birth; all the stages of my life were spread out before you, the days of my life all prepared before I'd even lived one day. Psalms 139 14-16, The Message Last weekend I met an artist, a lovely woman who works with stained glass. She explained to me how God had led her to become an artist full-time. I encouraged her, reminding her that God created her with an amazing talent to share. That talent was placed in her for a purpose. It is not vain to do what you were created to do and to take pride in that creation. I was doing well. I was encouraging a Sister to follow God's plan for her. I was praising our God for creating us with talents and gifts. Then...I blew it. I didn't even realize what I had done until days later. I said, "I have zero artistic abilities." Then I'm sure I made some sort of lame self deprecating joke. Several months ago I embroidered a baby quilt for a friend. I took the almost finished project to my Grandmother to ask her opinion on a particular stitch. She turned the quilt over in her hands, rubbing her wrinkled fingers across the backstitching, "This is good," she said. "for machine work." (In my family that is the equivalent of calling some one the worst possible name you can imagine, whatever that may be!) "Machine work?!?" I stammered. "No, ma'am. I stitched that by hand. Every stitch! By hand!" My Grandmother brought the quilt closer to her face and pulled gently at some of the long stitches. "Well, then," she said approvingly. "That's a different tale to tell. I'm a better teacher than I thought." I come from a long line of gifted artists. We are quilters and embroidery experts by experience. God gave that talent to many women in my family and we pass it along to each generation. I sold God short in that conversation with my artist friend. I gave Him no credit for the ability He gave me. God created everyone with a talent. Be bold in how you use it. Display your art. Play your music. Dazzle people with your brilliance. And when they brag on you, use that moment in the spotlight to teach someone GOD DON'T MAKE JUNK.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Enough is enough DATE: 4/17/2006 04:46:00 PM ----- BODY:
My Great Grandmother used to say, "Enough is enough and too much is nasty."
After 6 shows in less than 45 days, I'm ready to take a break from Third Day shows. It's not that there is anything wrong with seeing your favorite band 6 times in a little over a month. It's just wearing me down.
It's summer time now. My niece is the catcher for the youth club softball team and I plan to be there to cheer her to a successful season. I feel like I haven't had dinner with my best friend in months. My flower bed is a weed paradise. There are other things to focus on and I'm looking forward to doing that.
By the fall, Hayley will again be MVP of the season on a winning team. My best friend and I will have spent hours and hours talking about nothing and ... well, to be honest, there isn't much hope for the flower bed. But I will have spent the summer doing things I love to do and the anticipation of a 40 city fall tour will have me jittery with excitement.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: DATE: 4/13/2006 09:48:00 AM ----- BODY:
It's prom season and the drama is high. " Girl-A" can't find that perfect date. "Girl-B" can't find that perfect dress. "Boy-C" is refusing to attend and is getting tired of hearing about the fabled perfect dress. Hearing my youth kids talk about prom brought back memories for me. I attended my senior prom in a red and black Scarlett O'Hare ensemble. (Allow me to remind you, it WAS 1987.) There was nothing particularly memorable about the night. I attended with my highschool boyfriend. I broke curfew. I can't for the life of me remember the theme song. A few weeks after the prom the aforementioned boyfriend dumped me. I collected all the pictures, letters, gifts, etc into a pile and burned them in the backyard. For that reason, I don't think fondly on proms. But all that is about to change! Jason is the Senior chaperone this year. We have decided to make an event of it. I'll be wearing a black velvet gown. (Much more elegant than the Scarlett get up, I assure you.) Jason will wear a matching black velvet blazer with his hip suit. We will dance and laugh. This will be a prom to remember. I hope my dress fits. How should I do my hair? Who will be at out table? Who will have the most gorgeous dress? It's prom season and the drama is high.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Cut Footloose! DATE: 4/11/2006 12:36:00 PM ----- BODY: This is good for a giggle. -------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: "Yeah, Man!" DATE: 4/07/2006 07:50:00 AM ----- BODY:
Friday already? This week has hit me hard. I'm exhausted. Know where I can get a little boost? Yeah, Man! Coke Blak has hit the US market. Coke effervescence with coffee essence! Red Bull is so middle class. So 15 minutes ago. I'm sure all the beautiful people will be drinking Coke Blak. Coke and coffee, together at last. Oh happy day!
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Jesus loves me DATE: 4/06/2006 08:06:00 AM ----- BODY:
How can we begin to understand the love of Jesus? Jesus reached people on their own levels. He spoke to them in terms they could understand. He told parables to farmers about seeds. He spoke to merchants using illustrations of money. He spoke of family to a culture that valued genealogy. When some one tells you God loves you like a father, they are telling you the absolute truth. But if your father was the distant, unemotional type, how does that influence you? If I told you God loves you like a groom loves a bride on their wedding day, but you've never experienced that, it becomes a reference point and little else. Please know that God loves you with an all consuming love. His love for you goes beyond anything you will ever understand, but try anyway. Try to understand. Find that illustration in the Bible that speaks to you. Do not allow yourself to feel less than, because you don't have the same experiences as those around you. Ask God to reveal to you, in a way that you can relate to, the depths of His love for you. And never, NEVER let anyone shake that faith. I write this today secure in His love for me. Regardless of my understanding or yours, I know without a doubt My God loves me. Shalom.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Tennessee Road Trip 2006 Part I DATE: 4/04/2006 04:58:00 PM ----- BODY:
We headed out Thursday for Knoxville, our first in a string of shows. Our seats were not where we had expected them to be. I had been told I had seats just right of center. Perhaps they need to better define 'just right of'. We were waaaaaay right of center. Water under the are some shots from backstage before the show. Jason with David Crowder: We affectionately call David "a unique creation of God". David is amazing. I am thrilled to see him and DC*B at every show. Jason has perfected his David Crowder impersonation. "You people are viscous on the inside. Evil, just evil."
For those of you who have never had a conversation with me, this is me with Mac Powell. I've seen the band in concert 18 times, had the opportunity to meet them several times and it never occurs to me to get a pic with the lead singer. This time I did. My mother is so jealous! We have a little joke in my circles. When you talk to Mac, do NOT look into those beautiful blue eyes! I'm telling you, its a dangerous thing. Continuing in the Third Day motif, this is David Carr. It only takes a few minutes with David to realize he is a beautiful person inside and out. I like to refer to David as the 'all around good guy'. He spoke at the after party Saturday night. If anyone in that room wasn't moved by what he said, they are made of stone. What is a Third Day show without a picture with The Doctor? I have no idea what's up with the smirks...I swear we were much happier than we appear in this photo.
That's the Knoxville leg of the trip. Stay tuned for more from Tennessee Road Trip 2006.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Marty Freakin' Stuart DATE: 4/02/2006 03:18:00 AM ----- BODY:
Tonight we saw Third Day and DC*B for the third show in as many nights. I Saw the Light has been one of my favorite concert songs on this tour. Tonight Marty Stuart joined DC*B on stage. Guys! Marty Stuart! Dressed in a full length, tailored, lime green, fuchsia lined coat, he wowed the crowd with his mandolin skills. (And his fashion sense.) After he left the stage, I had to sit down because I was shaking. What a shock! What a treat! Click here to see part of the video. Check out his newest release Souls' Chapel.
-------- AUTHOR: Jason & Traci TITLE: Yeah, Man! DATE: 3/30/2006 08:30:00 AM ----- BODY:
I'm posting my Friday feature a day early. Jason and I are on the road this weekend. We're following Third Day through Knoxville, Chattanooga and Nashville. With the added bonus of Donald Miller, this should be a great trip! Which leads me to my "Yeah,Man!" for this week:
Road Trips! Road trips are a great way to get time alone, or alone together. Jason and I have been taking road trips for a couple of years now. It has become a priority for us. Hours together, driving from point A to point B give us unique opportunities. We debate, discuss theology, literature, music and our favorite flavors of ice cream. Any trip over 3 hours warrants the singing of "The Day the Music Died". Yes, we know all the words. ;) Jason and I have been a couple for almost 14 years, but I learn something new about us every time we travel together.
Take a road trip with some one you want to know better. Enjoy the journey and the destination becomes all the more special.

Happy travels!