OH, how I would love to be sitting next to you as you watch this!

OK, so I’m minding my own business checking my mail, and something from a site called “Forumeter” shows up on my Google Alert –yes, I Google Alert myself and Russ and Babybloomr, get over yourself– and here’s what it says:

“I found these videos of high school drama kids doing lipsyncs on a Beta tape that came with a betamax player I bought on eBay. Other tapes in the collection were TV broadcasts in Seattle … so these might be from the same area? If you know these people, send them the link.”

It’s dated February 2, 1988!

Apparently these two lovely young men and their friend behind the camera made this music video in someone’s basement (that just happened to have a wooden cross in it…?), or maybe it’s where their youth group meets, or something. Anyway, one guy is lip-synching his little heart out to Russ’ vocal on “I Still Believe” and his friend is rocking the guitar parts. The performance is not exactly what you would called ‘packed with emotion,’ which is even funnier considering their song choice. It is just all so incredibly 80’s-tastic that I just had to share it with you!

And here’s the thing: if ANYBODY on the face of God’s green earth has any idea who these guys are and where they are now I cannot begin to tell you how happy that would make me.

I wonder if they have any memory of even doing this?!

I wonder if they are pastors somewhere now? Or teachers, or car salesmen… or serial killers? Bless their sweet hearts, who knew that what they did way back when they were just two bored teenagers sitting around on a rainy afternoon with nothing to do would ultimately up in the hands of Russ’ wife (who just happens to have a blog, mwahahahaha!)  and that Russ himself would be sitting in his kitchen 20 years later watching it and saying, “Oh, bless their hearts…”

And so, I now present to you “I Still Believe” by Russ Taff and two random guys that will probably never know how much enjoyment their little artistic endeavor from yester-yore has now brought to so many!

154 Responses

  1. themema

    What a riot! And what fun it would be to find out who they are and what they are up to now.

  2. mariajhmom

    I have no idea who those guys are. I do know one thing. That was and still is a great song! Thanks for the trip down memory lane!

  3. tori

    themema– I KNOW! But I have no idea how I could ever find them.

    mariajhmom– Honestly, I think that is my all -time favorite song he ever did.

  4. Phyllis S

    Love It!

    Tori, you might put a comment on the “you tube” page for this song, someone might read the comment who knows the guys.

    Keep them coming…..

  5. LindaB

    Wow, that guy does look a lot like Russ when he was that age. (Notice how sensitive and diplomatic I am in not blurting out, “…when Russ was young!”) I bet a lot of people told him he looks like Russ Taff! He even did the signature “AH HA” in the intro! (I love it when Russ does that! Does he ever walk around the house singin’ that “Ah ha” thing? Like…..”Tori, I found the remote we lost……AH HA!”)

    Cool video, Tori. I think Phyllis has a good idea about how to find these guys.



  7. tori

    Phyllis S– I did! Wonder if I’ll hear anything…?

    LindaB– I think it’s the mullet. Mullets make everyone look just alike, male or female. Trust me, I’m from Arkansas, I know my mullets.

    DELIVERED– Exactly.


    OK, Tori – you didn’t answer LindaB’s question about the Ah-has! And, LindaB – you are as funny as Tori! I look forward to your responses as much as I look forward to Tori’s life commentaries! Have ya’ll met?
    Yall pray for me – I am tryin my first batch of Pepper jelly this weekend! I love it, can’t find it in any store, decided to make it myself. I’m from the country, but my grandma & mother did all the canning, freezing and jams – I did all the plantin’, weedin’ & pickin’! And, no one has done any of that stuff in a LONG time!

  9. LindaB

    Johnnie, you’re making pepper jelly? All by yourself? Do you need a license to do that? You’re not talking hot peppers, are ya?

    Thanks for the compliment…..I think. That Tori knows way more words than I do, and she can arrange them so well! And so hilariously! She’s one of a few writers that can make me laugh right out loud…….when I’m by myself!

    Yes, to answer your question, I have met Tori Taff….. twice! Both times in Gatlinburg at Family Fest. I can tell you about our meeting——just picture the hare and the tortoise…..walking through town……she is walking and talking and I’m wishing I had an oxygen tank and roller skates. I have to tell ya—-Tori has an illegal supply of energy! That or I’m dang near in a coma. But she is honestly the nicest, most down to earth, kindest lady on the planet. And entertaining! I hope you get to meet her someday. You’ll love her!

  10. trishARKANSAS

    LindaB, I think delivered has something there. I remember going through a particularlry hard time and depression was setting in and i read your comments on a particular subject. As I was reading it … it felt like God was just wrapping His arms around me. It brought me such comfort. If I never get a chance to meet you here than I am really looking forward to heaven so that I can get the opportunity to talk to you.

  11. LindaB

    ((((Trish)))) You are very kind! And I hope I get to talk to you someday too! If not here, then in another and better place. God bless you!


    OK, LindaB – I guess this is the episode where Johnnie & LindaB ignore Tori on her own blog, huh? I’ll take my chances!

    First – yep, jalapenos, & no license needed, I think? Oh, well, if so….then I have been on the opposite side of the law for alot worse things! (& survived, all glory to God!)

    Second, ya’ll gotta let me in on the next Gatlinburg party, then, so that I can crash it! I am just waiting for God to give me the go-ahead to travel, (I really try to have my steps ordained by Him), but you & Tori have been targeted! Fair warning has been issused, OK?
    And, don’t you dare sell yourself short, girl! Your writing/communication skills are fabulous in their own rights! That’s why I had to wonder if ya’ll had met. I’m gonna get in the loop soon enough, too. Waiting to meet both of you at a concert – have never been to a concert whatsoever! So, keep me updated on when the next one is – I’ll bring roller skates!

    Thirdly – I already love Tori like Job loved the Lord! Almost as much as I love Pepper jelly, and those fat-free devil’s food cookies at the Dollar General! (I’m sure Tori likes being compared to food!)
    I look forward to meeting you, Tori & Russ in the very near future.
    Love, Johnnie

  13. LindaB

    Well, Johnnie…..I don’t think Tori will mind if we talk amongst ourselves while she’s jet setting and cruising on the high seas…….suffering for Jesus, of course! I don’t know if they have internet access on a cruise ship in the waters around Alaska. But if they do, I bet our Tori will find it!!! Maybe she’ll send us some pictures.

  14. cary

    I like Just Believe a little more, because I was going through a period of spent faith in my life and I did not know how to obtain faith enough to receive my healing, and then I heard Just Believe. The 20 year old preachers kid with renewed faith could believe some more until the incurable disease was removed by God. Each time I would feel faith dwindling, I would pop in the Walls of Glass cassette and listen to Just Believe. The song: I Still Believe, is just as powerful in my life, now that I have received my healing and later in life. The Lord works mysteriously, I noticed one day walking in from the garage where I work, the exhaust fans were making the same sound as the beginning of I Still Believe. All of the sudden, the words were flooding into my memory and I started singing the words walking in to work. Victory in hand and my spirit revived. I know I felt the presence of the Lord and it is due to a Prince with God. God Bless Russ and Tori. You are a powerful team used by God.

  15. GRITSinNC

    What a wonderful “find”, Tori. I hope you hear from or about those guys. I didn’t know Russ that far back, but I wish I had. That song sorta reminds me of “Bethlehem, Galilee, Gethsame” which as done by Russ is about the greatest message in a song I’ve ever heard, and I cry every time I watch the video of him singing it in Israel.

    LindaB, I agree with others…your comments are extremely entertaining and you & Tori both make me laugh right out loud by myself. :) I wish she could blog every day ’cause I could use the lift you and she provide.

    Delivered, it must be a NC thing ’cause I love those fat-free devil food cookies at Dollar General too…and hot pepper jelly on cream cheese on a wheat thin….yummo. :)

    When you say you’ve never been to a concert, do you mean any concert or just a Russ concert? I’ve never seen Russ in concert either…sure wish he’d get booked close enough I could attend. Praise God for videos! A couple other of the well-known Christian artists will be not too far away soon though. I’m sure I’ll never get to Gatlinburg so don’t guess I’ll ever have the pleasure of meeting Tori & Russ. :(

  16. GRITSinNC

    Sorry…I’m in such a habit of that semi-colon parenthesis smiley thing, I see I do it way too often when it automatically turns into a smiley or frowny face. I’ll try to restrain myself from now on….as in right now…

  17. LindaB

    Well, I know what I’m doing Monday morning——I’m finding me a Dollar General……the cookie isle……fat free chocolate cookies!!!

    :):):):) (hey, that’s cool!) :)


    Ya’ll are TOO funny! I REALLY did laugh out loud, & guess what? I use the computer at the local library, so now all the librarians are frowning at me & about to kick me outta here! I mean, I threw back my head & HEE-hawed! I found those same cookies at the Dollar Tree for a buck a box! Grits – when I go to see Russ & Tori and LindaB, (see, she’s part of the package now!) I will take pictures for you. I usually love taking pictures of my fingers, too, so I will try to save some of those for you, too! I thought that cruise started on the 21st! I feel sorry for them working so hard for the Lord while I am here in 90 degree humidity!

    And, I have never, ever been to any type of concert. Had chances to see Rick James in Greensboro 25 years ago, but was too intoxicated to even get to the concert! Then, again had chance to go back stage to George Clinton & the Funkadelics, (my all-time fav b4 Holy Ghost blasting!) but was again incapable of even leaving the house! Just more demons I would have had to get rid of later, I suppose.

    I am sure that the cruise ship has wi-fi. We’ll get pics tomorrow, I bet. She can’t resist us!

  19. LindaB

    I also enjoyed your testimony, Cary! It sounds to me like the Lord has brought you a long way! Isn’t it amazing that often times, a song can make more of an impact on our life and our choices than a whole bunch of expertly delivered sermons? A catchy melody seems to etch the words on our minds forever. And we, like the sheep that we are, seem to need repetition to learn anything! I think it’s also interesting that King David, a man after God’s own Heart (which is a whole other fascinating subject to ponder), was a musician and a singer.

    Well, anyway, I don’t think I’ve seen you here before, but I could be wrong. Welcome and we’re glad you posted!

    And Johnnie, I hope you’re right about Tori remembering us here at home laboring in the fields and sends us some exotic pictures!

  20. jonny

    Art, words as art or in an art form, have always been able to penetrate, reach areas a “message” could never touch. Actually, when Paul is giving an example of how we should use our words, he uses an art form as an example.

    Would appreciate prayers for my dad’s side of the family. Around two weeks ago a cousin my age was shot to death by her husband. He also shot and killed their two sons ages three and seven. He then killed himself. Her mother taking it extremely hard, understandably To my knowledge noone on my dad’s side of the family has a saving understanding of Christ. Thanks in advance.


    Oh, Jonny! I am SO sorry, & you can believe that I have already prayed,& am getting my warriors/partners on it like YESTERDAY! Bless your heart over all this anguish, & ‘tho its easier said than done, let this be a growth/trust/faith catalyst in your relationship w/ our Maker. All things DO work together for good to them that love God & are called according to His purpose, AND NOTHING IS TOO DIFFICULT FOR HIM. This I do know. I will be praying specifically for God’s will in their individual lives, but also praying that He will use all of this for His glory. Sometimes, unfortunately, it takes these things to draw us to Him. You, (& your family)are about to be the target of much prayer! Hang on to Him, Jonny! I had wondered where you were – you are quite a word artist, too! In His Deep Love, Johnnie

  22. jonny

    I’ve been around. Just enjoying you ladies bless, enjoy each other while Tori’s absent. Other than resisting making another pass at LindaB, I’m OK. I’m not close to anyone involved. It was of course quite a shock to many, and is truly tragic, but as I wrote, the mom, grandmother is not doing well, at all. My father and the mom’s little brother, my cousin’s uncle, are probably effected as well, but haven’t heard anything about them. Oh, and this was also quite a shock to the neighborhood, community where it happened. Thanks so much for the prayers! Peace!

  23. delightedabroad

    Jonny, I’m so sorry for this family tragedy ! However I want to pick up the other topic you mentioned. I totally agree with you that art has a much better access to a human heart. And you’re also right that words can be real art. That’s just what I experience nearly every time I’m doing my “homework” – I’m in the middle of a training to become a translator/interpreter and I can really assure you that this is a special sort of art. So that’s why I truly enjoy Tori’s blog and your comments ! It’s amazing how you, Tori, can even paint a picture with words !

  24. jonny

    Thanks, and thanks. I trust Tori will appreciate your words concerning her writing as well. Interestingly enough, by brother was the writer growing up. He still actively writes, by the way. I didn’t “click” into it until my early thirties = /

  25. trishARKANSAS

    Oh God, please help Jonny’s family. Let Your peace reign in their hearts. Give them that peace that surpasses undrestanding. Most times we don’t understand such tragedy but Lord you can take this and turn it around for your glory. I pray that this family will come to the saving knowledge of You. In Jesus name….. Amen

  26. rachelbaker

    I’m praying for your family Jonny, what a terrible tragedy.

    I’ve missed you all while I’ve been away on holiday (vacation). 15 days without the internet, and I discovered I’m not as dependent as I thought, although I must admit its nice to be back.

    Tori’s blog has to be one of the best ‘communities’ on the web – of course we all come to read her wonderful writing, but surely this ‘comments’ section is nearly as good; laughing, sharing and praying for each other.


    Jonny – still prayin!
    Hey, LindaB! Where ya at? Gettin a little slow out here w/out you & Tori talkin!
    Grits – someone told me I gotta have goggles & gloves to make that pepper jelly. True? The recipes don’t say anything about it. Am I gonna be sneezin the whole while, or what? Haven’t bought peppers, yet, someone is supposed to bring me some out of their garden today.

  28. jonny

    The gloves and goggles are more than likely because of the acids in the peppers. I used to make my own salsa and was careful with handling the jalos. I may have boiled them 1st before handling. It was around 20 years ago = /


    20 years ago? So, I’m not gonna bite & ask how old you are. Obviously your eyesight is terrific if you’re still using your phone for this! And, ya’ll – I see that Tori has the nerve to be blabbing all over another site, but leaves us here high & dry! She had better be saving the best for last! If I don’t get some pics & stuff soon, I’ll start jerking & twitching! Tori – this had better be good, girl! I can’t figure out how to read nothin’ but the first line of it!


    LindaB! Where r u?

  31. jonny

    She’s obviously run off with Tori!! 45.

  32. Barbara M. Lloyd

    Have to tell you folks that Linda B is as sweet as she is funny…I’m blessed to be one of her friends.

    And Tori Taff is the epitome of wonderful wit, common sense, and a command of the English language uncommon to one of her age. But because I love her I won’t mention her age. Oh heck, this is Tori…she’ll tell you herself if you wanna know. Tori’s picture is in the dictionary in two places…right beside “beautiful”describing her features and her spirit…and “down-to-earth.”

    And, drum roll please…I have been privileged to attend several Russ Taff solo concerts. Pull up your socks and hold on to ‘em ’cause Russ will bless ‘em right off. He comes as a Revival package all rolled up into a magnificant singing voice and a little preaching thrown in…and he’s funny, too.

    Now before we have to throw you down, pour a lkittle oil over you and pray for you because of those envy horns growing out of your heads….just be happy for me in my old age years. Your time is coming!

    Is there a complaint department around here? I sure haven’t seen one….but there was no sound coming from those two young boys when I watched the video of them mimicing Russ. bummers.

  33. LindaB

    Hey folks! I didn’t hear y’all callin’ me! I was busy cleaning. No, really! I scrubbed every inch of my bathroom with a toothbrush and Comet. That’s not like me. But I heard on TV that older people who fall and are injured usually do their fallin’ in the bathroom. And I thought I didn’t really want the 911 people comin’ in my bathroom to rescue me in its present state of untidyness. So….I cleaned it up real good! I’m ready to fall now……if I have to.

    MommaLloyd, you are too kind! And that’s just one of your lovely attributes! You make good cakes too!

  34. LindaB

    Gee, those cruises are dang long, aren’t they!!!

  35. jonny

    Oh, and yes, good eyesight for my age. No surgery, glasses or lenses yet. I do wear sunglass on stage, as seen in the updated photos if one clicks on the green “jonny” name, but they are not prescription.

  36. MostlySunny

    Hey everybody! Back from vacation (holiday to some of you). South Dakota, Montana, Yellowstone, Wyoming. etc…the Obama’s were following us. Things got crazy there for a while – secret service, stuff closed or blocked off, keep your windows closed during these hours, can’t go there today, helicopters, park police everywhere!

    And no internet! So I’ve been catching up on all the happenings on Tori’s blog:

    Great song – don’t know who these guys are
    Pepper jelly – love it!
    Jonny, Oh my!
    Never met Tori(or Russ) – hope to someday

    OK, I’ve been blessed just checking in here…more later.

  37. trishARKANSAS

    You all are having an awful lot of fun on Tori’s blog.

    Jonny clicked the green jonny tab. How neat!

  38. LindaB

    Welcome back, Mostly Sunny! (Cute name, BTW!)

    Trish, YES WE ARE! While the cat’s away, the mice will play! And play. And play. That’s who we are!

    I clicked on your name too, Jonny! Impressive! You’re a rock star! I just have to ask one question——who chose the name “LoveGrapes”???

  39. jonny

    Oh, LindaB, I tried to hide the fact I’m a rock star from you while attempting to woo you. I was hoping to impress you with some of my other God given attributes before dropping the “rock star” bomb on you = / Oh well. I hope finding out this way was not too much of a shock on the ol’ system, especially after all your hard work in the bathroom!!

    The name was/is my idea.

  40. trishARKANSAS

    Jonny just want to add a few questions to LindaB’s one (where did that name come from by the way?) Is the peer pressure incredibly difficult? What do people say to you when they find out that your a Christian. Are you at liberty to share your testimony in the club scene?

  41. LindaB

    Well, Jonny, it WAS a shock! I don’t know why, but I thought you were in the military. (I’m kinda slow, ya know.) But a ROCK STAR—-WOW! That changes the whole “woo-ing” dynamics here! ROFLMBO OVER AND OVER!!! (I’m crackin’ myself up here!) I should tell you that if you’re into the “club scene”, as Trish said, the only “club” I’ve ever been in is the Mickey Mouse Club——I lost my ears long time ago though.

    Say, that cleanin’ the bathroom yesterday has wiped me out today! And, I found out that the toothbrush I used to scrub the grout lines was MY OWN!!! EWWWWWW!! But my teeth are “Comet” clean today! (I thought they looked whiter than usual!)

    Good questions, Trish! Your turn, Jonny!

  42. trishARKANSAS

    LindaB, has the toothbrush left your teeth with a lemony scent and squeeky clean?

  43. jonny

    The name originaly came from a Terry Scott Taylor song, Love Grapes. Its conception comes from, I believe, the gospel of John, chapter 15.

    What others think of me has rarely bothered me. Oddly enough, I find more pressure to be apart of things I find against what God requiress of me through those at church.

    Fortunately, I’m quite respected in the scene here. I think when the penny drops for some concerning my faith they just become more distant, quite. It’s hard to explain, but everything truly seems to happen in God’s time and in ways, circumstances and situations He’s working for His good purposes.

    I’ve had many opportunities to speak my peace publically. My “message” is usually to point out how we all need love and to see if we can’t find some new, more effective ways of loving each other cuz the old ways just don’t seen to be holding the fort. There are often a mix of faiths at our shows, so publically I stick to the love message. Privately, I’ve had other opportunities to express more of where I’m at, or believe I’m at, in Christ. I also get opportunities to speak at various Christian gatherings. I’m usually speaking about being rightly related to Christ, learning to listen to His voice alone, and work on being only true to that. Oh, and that it is impossible to be His without love. Some other stuff as well, but usually things along those lines.

    I find how I behave, live my life, is far more important, vital to His kingdom than what my words have to offer. I don’t believe we can love, or preach, with words. I also trust completely in how Christ uses me in the arts, the understanding He’s given me of how He uses art, for serving His purposes in, with and through me. Hope this covers your questions.

  44. jonny

    Oh, and I seem to do more listening than talking, although there’s definately some room for improvement there as well. I believe one of the first steps towards loving others is to shut up and listen.

    Well, I had a pair of Mickey Mouse ears once as well. Wasn’t a club member, though. I used them for other mouse purposes, Mighty Mouse to be exact! I put the ears on, safety pinned a red towel for a cape, maybe even had a yellow t-shirt!!, then “flew” off my grandmother’s couch over and over again until my little sister wanted in on the action and got hurt. Lost the ears, cape and jumping off grandma’s couch privileges. All good things come to an end, I guess = /

  45. LindaB

    “I find how I behave, live my life, is far more important, vital to His kingdom than what my words have to offer.” — Jonny

    Well, AMEN BROTHER!!!! Our actions and attitudes DO speak louder than all the wonderful speeches we can spout, I believe! And I commend you for your honest and sincere testimony in whatever “scene” you happen to be into! (Is that a dangling participle? My bad.) In what country did you say you are living? I forgot.

  46. jonny

    Finland, Helsinki. I also run a thing called House of Love club in three of Helsinki’s leading music venues. I was interviewed at the beginning of the year for one paper and the interviewer stated I was the king of organizing happenings in the music venues, clubs, in Finland. Christ just really started opening a lot of doors in that area a few years ago and I just accepted that’s where He was leading, one step at a time, one mistake at a time, one day at a time.

  47. trishARKANSAS

    Jonny!!! How awesome. I just loved your testimony. It’s true actions always speak louder than words.

  48. LindaB

    Yes, you have an awesome testimony, Jonny! God bless you!

  49. jonny

    Thanks! And I’m more than blessed being able to be a part of this blog! Thanks to everyone for making this such an awesome place to “hang out.” = ) Helps prove that God is still good, obviously = )

  50. bettyrwoodward

    I shall be glad when this cruise ends so we get another blog. Sorry Tori I know you’re having a good time but we’re missing you here!

  51. rachelbaker

    Agreed Mum, but its great hearing about everyone else too!

  52. jonny

    Well, we now have over 50 Say it!s!! that should be some sort of record here…

    I finally got to experience the video with sound! Jumped over to YouTube to do so. It got to me. Grateful I wasn’t sitting next to Tori while watching it! So much has happened since 1st hearing and being into the original version of the song, its album. It all sort of hit me at once hearing Russ’ version again, they way his vocals seemed to penetrate the heart of the piece, and there two kids, and the person taping being so young at the time, as I was, especially in/with my faith.

    FWIW, I was sooo looking forward to getting the album when it was 1st released. Loved Walls of Glass, Metals didn’t work for me, but this one seemed so promising. Really cool, impressive cover/look for Russ at the time, and he FINALLY lost the moustache! I’d heard a couple clips from it on a promo cassette and it sounded more like stuff I was into then. As mentioned, I was already a fan of the original version of I Still Believe, and I also noticed it had Down In The Lowlands, which I was also already a fan of via the original artist’s demo version. Unfortunately, that ended up being the reason I quickly gave it away. I didn’t appreciate at the time the censored lyrics to the Lowland song.

    I think this was the 1st time I’d listened to Russ’ version of I Still Believe since giving it away. As I wrote, so much has happened since then. I’d really appreciate hearing it with the “ears” I have now.

    An interesting side note to when the original version of the song was released. The band The Call were not on a Christian label, they made no public noise about their faith, although people were aware of it. Well, some Christian leaders, Christian book store owners, managers, wanted to know just what they did believe, exactly. Also those connected with Christian radio stations, especially if they were going to play, promote the song. In response, the band sent the apostle’s creed, “I believe in…” Apparently this did not go over big with some of those who wanted to know = /


    LindaB – as funny as that bathroom thing was, I have sent xtra angels – PLEASE don’t fall! And, how do you get MamaLloyd’s cakes! Does everyone out there have a meeting w/out me? And how long does this cruise last? Is she ever coming back?
    Jonny – my librarian says that I cannot get Myspace here. So, jeparker63@gmail.com is where to send that. I am about to have a fit to see it! I wondered why your name came up in different colors!
    Sunny – good to have you back, too! You gotta be a southerner to even know about pepper jelly!
    Trish – we went from ignoring her to talking about her on her own blog! Maybe we will prompt some response soon.
    OMG! Jonny – and you’re not even here in the country? A rock star? Why did I think you were just over in California? I am floored! Impressed! Curious! that was even a speechless moment! Gona try to pull up Lovegrapes on the web.


    Jonny – cannot pull you up except on MySpace – which isn’t available here. Will be checking my email for a pic.
    Are any of ya’ll going to Myrtle Beach for the Gaither Fest. & Russ gig on Oct. 2&3?
    I think that Tori ought to back today or tomorrow – Russ has a gig on the 29th, so it is time for them to come back & get ready to go again!

  55. jonny

    I don’t have the photos myself, and I don’t have a computer!! If you’d like to see them ASAP, maybe someone here with a MySpace account could copy them and pass them onto you. There should be a whole mess of photos, plus a slide show or two, uploaded soon as well.

    Oh, and if someone from Russ’ camp could send a friend request to the LoveGrapes MySpace page, it would be appreciated. His sight doesn’t accept friend requests from mine = /

  56. trishARKANSAS

    Delivered-I thought Jonny was a she not a he. I must have missed him wooing LindaB.

  57. jonny

    Well, I didn’t have to be a he in order to try and hit up on LindaB, but we need not go down that path. And I thought my name was spelled with a lower case “j” at the beginning, but I must have missed that as well = /

    Actually trishARKANSAS, I at least qua-triple checked to see if it was OK hanging around here and not being one of the human type female species. Those who responded at the time all gave me a green light, so have been hanging out ever since = /


    Trish – there are 2 Jonnys – he is the one that spells his name w/ lower case, my name is Johnnie, (female) but the name that pops up is DELIVERED, since I have been delvr’d from numerous demons.
    Hey, jonny – I guess that I WAS a “rockstar”, (that’s what they call crack addicts), but you are really a true rock star! Bad joke, I know. Missing Tori WAAAAY too much! Will try to catch up w/ the MySpace thang on a friend’s computer.
    AND – I’m w/ Trish – I missed the wooing! Course, I’m not known for subtlety, either!

  59. LindaB

    Do y’all think Tori is gonna be upset with us when she gets back and we’ve got over 50 replies on her blog without her……..with some testifyin’, some woo-in’, some bathroom jokes, some pepper jelly and Dollar Store finds??? I hope not! If she cuts us off, where will we go? Some group therapy thingy somewhere?

    Yeah, she said her ship was in a fogbank. And I say, welcome to MY brain! And praise the Lord for Ritalin!

  60. jonny

    There was nothing subtle about it! At first I thought she was free, available. I let her know I’d be all over her like a fly to molasses. Then she mentioned an ex-husband still around. So I thought it best to check with him first before taking out and dusting off the old fly suit. Then, the bomb! This was all some sort of twisted inside joke and that she was indeed still married!! What a blow, I tell ya! Well, at least I left Russ and his notorious shoe collection alone for awhile.

    This is probably a guy thing, but I wonder if we can make it to 100 Say it!s before Tori’s next blog entry = )

  61. trishARKANSAS

    jonny- your ok with me too! I’ve enjoyed the testimony a lot. That’s preaching stuff.

    LindaB- This has been really a lot of fun. I am looking forward to reading Tori’s next blog!

    Delivered- ME TOO!!!

  62. rachelbaker

    jonny – I don’t think its a guy thing, lets go for 100!

    Poor Tori, I think she was under the illusion that this was HER blog!

  63. MostlySunny

    Tori who?

  64. jonny

    YES!! A take over!!! Woo-hoo = ) = ) = )

    Well, I wasn’t trying to preach, just walk the line, share where I’m at.

    OK, we should probably set some sort of guide lines here for the take over. For example, no Saying it! just for the sake raking up the numbers. There really should be something to Say, even if just for the sake of keeping LindaB partially entertained. And no slipping into gossip just to rack up a few more numbers. I mean think about it, we are taking over TORI’S blog! Not easy shoes to fill, but I think we should give it an honest try!! I got a good feeling about this, so it MUST mean God is on our side!! Right! Uh… right!?! … … right???

  65. jonny

    Oh, and the take over should probably be done in love. Some of us are processing Christians after all!!


    This is getting way too good, yall! I think we can hit that 100 mark before she gets back. I hope this doesn’t damage poor Toroi’s ego any! If so, LindaB can clean her bathroom, Jonny can rock out a little, and I can send her some pepper jelly! And, all will be well.
    But, word to the wise – Big Sister IS watching! Yall better do some Say Its quick!


    hey, and what’s that about Russ’ shoe collection? So, he has a coffee AND shoe habit? I thought it was just black shirts! And, for the record – since we have a lurker named TORI – HE NEVER EMAILED ME BACK FROM HIS BLOG SITE! But, since he IS Tori’s husband, I’ll let him slide on that!

  68. jonny

    The shoe thing is my own twisted intention that I was having some fun with awhile back. Unfortunately, I can’t remember anymore what sparked it in the first place. Probably a culmination a few little things = / I’m hoping it hits critical mass vicious rumor level soon, though = )

  69. trishARKANSAS

    I’m a children’s church pastor. Last Saturday I held up a $1 bill. I asked the kids what it was worth. We all agreed that it was worth $1. Then I crumpled it all up and asked what it was worth in it’s crumpled state. Again we all agreed that it was worth $1. Then I told the dollar that it was stupid and it was ugly. But we all agreed that it was still worth $1. Then I told the kids that it doesn’t matter what the world throws at them that they were made in God’s image and that they were valuable to Him.

    So there it is I’m a children’s pastor. Not a Rock star ( I don’t think people could take my singing ) I can’t carry a tune in a bucket. And I am not a good cook (although I can make a mean chocalate gravy.)

    I have really enjoyed learning about y’all the past couple of days.

  70. LindaB

    “…I’m hoping it hits critical mass vicious rumor level….”

    Ba ha ha ha ha ha ha!!!!!

    Well, guys, I’m babysitting right now for my grandson Carter. When his dad gets home from work, my hubby and me are going away for a couple days. So, you folks can chat away and try to hit that 100 comments challenge without me. I have faith that you can do it without breaking a sweat.

  71. rachelbaker

    So, we need to have something to say, it must be entertaining and not in the slightest bit gossipy – jonny, you set tough standards, and I’m not sure I can meet them.

    I am neither a rock star or a children’s minister, and can positively say I will never be either! My task at this point in my life is to be Mum to the three most beautiful, wonderful children in the world, the oldest of whom will be five on tuesday.

    I discovered Tori’s blog a fair while back when I googled something about cabins in the smokey mountains when we were planning a holiday, and soon became hooked. I have to admit to becoming a fan of Russ through being a fan of Tori, rather than the other way round. AND if it wasn’t for this wonderful blog I wouldn’t have had the pleasure of helping to organise the concert in England, being there, and spending some time with Russ. I’m still gutted I missed Tori though!!


    R we actually gonna do this thang?
    Well, Trish – I think that dollar stuff was the neatest thing! I am passing that on to my ADULT pastor. That’s not just kid stuff!! I’m gonna store that for next week – I am also past-time 1st grade teacher & substitute for elementary children. Also, working some w/ a private agency w/ employment supposrtive services for vocational rehab referrals in this area, as well as choir singer & church secretary. I love being able to now serve the Lord.
    LindaB – you, me & Jonny have done our fair share to take over the blog!
    Rachel – I found this wonderful place & people thru Russ’ blog – have been in love w/. Russ since probably 1977, but now say, “Russ who? Oh, Tori’s husband!” No wonder he hasn’t answered my email!!
    But, you have met them, huh? I feel as though I have known her for years, she’s just that kinda girl! But, I really, truly am excited about the day I can hang out w/ her a little & get the humor & views firsthand. It will be awesome! And get to hear him sing in person will be great, too. What’s his name, again? hehehehehe I hope that she will be at the Myrtle Beach gig. Not going to one until I am sure that she & I will get up there.

    That’s all, folks! Have a great weekend. You can best believe that come Monday morning, we will be hearing from her. I am ready for the pics!

  73. GRITSinNC

    Gosh,you’ve been having too much fun without me. I too am missing Tori, but all your Say Its are helping with that withdrawal until she gets back. Sure hope she’s gonna have time to do some witty & serious blogging soon.

    jonny, I was very impressed with your testimony. Your “motto” is something we all need to aspire to. I was surprised you’re from Finland. Gotta ask a question. I saw a 20/20 or Dateline or some such show a few years ago on Finland and they said most of the people were depressed and drank a lot because of the long periods without daylight. Is that true? Sure not true for you because it’s obvious you have Jesus!

    Johnnie, did you get the hot pepper jelly made? If so, how’d it turn out? Did you burn your eyes & hands? Make enough to send some west on 64?

    Nope, I can’t go to Gaither Fest in MB. Are you going? I need someone to go with me that can help me get about and daughter can’t do it. She’s taking me to Richmond in November for GVB and EHSS concert, so can’t do both. But Russ won’t be in Richmond. :( Seeing Ivan Parker a week from tomorrow night. Don’t know how I’m gonna ever get to see Russ and Tori, or get some MommaLloyd cake.

    LindaB, sorry you’re going off to leave us too, but enjoy your time away.

    Maybe I should have broke this up into two Say it’s in order to help hit the 100 mark?

  74. jonny

    Nope, breaking it off in two would be cheating! I’m from California, but now live in Finland. I’m not Finnish. Yes, they do drink too much, sadly so. Don’t know if it’s cuz of the long, dark winter though. Depression is also a problem, as well as people taking their own lives.

  75. delightedabroad

    This blog really seems to be a true community… Hope you don’t mind if I drop in every once in a while. I not only learn a lot in terms of content but also in terms of “every-day-language”. Yes, I confesss – I’m not a native speaker. (Please tell me about mistakes, wrong expressions etc !) Can anyone tell me when this blog started ? Are you all in from the beginning ?

  76. jonny

    Welcome delightedabroad!! Thanks for stopping by and Saying something! No, not everyone’s been here since the beginning. There was a one year celebration some time back, but can’t remember when, exactly. Maybe April?? If you go to the top of the page, over to your left in the black margin there is the word “Archives” just below the word “About.” If you click on that you should be able to find the very 1st blog entry somewhere. As for myself, I don’t mind you dropping by every once in awhile. The oftener the better, as far as I’m concerned, but I’m sort of new-ish here as well. By the way, where are you from, where are you staying now??

  77. delightedabroad

    Hi jonny, you’re right, the first blog started in April 2008. And thanks for your subtle hint (drop in/drop by). Well, right now I’m sitting in front of my computer :-) – but I guess you mean something else… I’m German and I live near Stuttgart. It would be great to join in that “blog community”, I didn’t participate in something like that before. Least of all a Christ-loving one.

  78. jonny

    Where around Stuttgart?? I’ve lived in both Stuttgart & Heilbronn (sp?) end of the eighties, beginning of the nineties! Well, Christ loves us, that’s for sure, His Father first and foremost. Hopefully we’re able to follow suit as best we can, and/or as He allows us to = )

  79. jonny

    Sorry, not Heilbronn, it was Untergruppenbach. Not completely sure about the spelling on that on either = /

  80. delightedabroad

    Your spelling is absolutely correct. The town I live in – called Weinstadt – is about 20km eastward from Stuttgart. This city is where I attend a language school. It might happen that I confound English spelling with the French one because that is my second language… i mean the second foreign language.

  81. jonny

    Cool! I recently started a full time Finnish language course. It lasts about ten months. It’s extremely basic, but I’m being paid to attend = ) I believe I’ve been to Weinstadt at one point or another. From 1983-1986-ish I lived in Nùrnberg amd Fùrth. I then spent around five years touring all of Germany, East and West at the time, as well as all German speaking countries. I was doing theatre in German, and sometimes English. During our brief training in the winter, and longer periods in the summer, I stayed with a Family in Stuttgart, and hung out a lot around Heilbronn and Untergruppenbach. Anyway, thanks so much for posting and sharing a little of what’s up in your life right now. I’ll leave it to the ladies to ask further questions = )

  82. rachelbaker

    delightedabroad, your English is great, and even if it wasn’t we would still be happy to have you here. I only ‘delurked’ a few months ago.

    Right, facebook confirms that Tori is back at home. Somehow she seems to think that unpacking and laundry are more urgent than us though (??!!??) so let the mutiny continue.

  83. jonny

    Right! OK then, more tid-bits concerning Finland!! Did you know that Finland consumes more coffee, caffeine per capita than any other country?? Or that they supposedly consume more ice cream, especially in the winter time, than any other country?? Or that the Finnish language is supposed to have more words for getting drunk than any other language??

  84. rachelbaker

    I can honestly say I didn’t know any of those facts, but now I do. How long they stay in my memory though , I couldn’t guess.

    Wow, ‘modern’ English seems to develop a new word for getting drunk on a near daily basis, the Finns must have a lot! Do they refer to different types of drunkeness (along the lines of tipsy/merry – plastered/bladdered) or are they just words for getting drunk generally (of which all the ones that spring to mind in English are too rude to print here but you know what I mean)?

    Do you think the amount of caffeine consumed is in direct proportion to the amount of alcohol consumed? You know, to cope with the morning after the night before.

    Tell us some of the best things about Finland jonny!

  85. rachelbaker

    So I just surfed on over to the BBC news website to see what was going on in the world and this was on the main page


    It seems Finland is also famed for weird and wonderful sporting contests. Who knew?

  86. jonny

    The health-care, medical system is SERIOUSLY good!! God could not have planted me in a better country to have three pretty big health problems be dealt with!

    Oh, and seeing as how I don’t speak Finnish yet, I could not take care of your one question for you. But, as to the alcohol, caffeine, ice cream, and copious amounts of other sweets they ingest, they just seem to be into extremes. I guess if they’re gonna do something, they just go for it, no holding back!! = /

    Well, at least we made it to eighty-five before Tori comes back in with a freshly opened can of whoop-bottom!! I hope that isn’t too difficult for delightedabroad to figure out!

  87. jonny

    Well, rachelbaker, I was not aware of any of that. I will say though that I have never, not once, had an problems with neighbors, neighbours, or anyone’s relatives bothering me. One thing I do appreciate about Finns is that they do seem to respect one’s privacy!

  88. bettyrwoodward

    Well, I add my bit to make the 100. Rachel you do have wonderful children just as I have wonderful grandchildren. All 4 of them are lovely. I have one staying here now who I hope will sleep through the night even though he slept in my arms for an hour this afternoon. I will see the others next weekend when I visit you. All 4 in a week must be a record.

  89. tori

    I love you with the white hot heat of a thousand suns.

    I would kiss each and everyone of you right smack on the mouth– yes, I mean YOU!

    I have had more fun reading through these than any one person should, and I wanted to jump right in and be part of it all! YAY– LET’S MAKE IT TO 100!!!!!

    (I will have a new post with pictures and Lord only knows what else on Monday…)

    Blog on, you guys, blog on!

  90. MostlySunny

    OH…She’s back!!!!

    Well, still need to make it to 100 so here’s my part. Tidbits and wise sayings collected from MostlySunny (aka Julie in Pittsburgh)…See below…

  91. MostlySunny

    “What did yo do today that only a Christian can do?” Corrie Ten Boom

  92. MostlySunny

    “It’s easy to dodge our responsibilities, but we cannot dodge the consequences of dodging our responsibilities.” Josiah Stamp

  93. MostlySunny

    Sometime God calms the storms, but sometimes He calms you through the storms (don’t know where I got that one from)

  94. MostlySunny

    “As Christians, integrity is something we must strive for at all times.” Joel Eidsness sermon on Ananias & Sapphira – Acts 5)

  95. MostlySunny

    “When the pain of remaining the same is greater than the pain of change, you’ll change. Sheila Walsh – book “Honestly”

  96. MostlySunny

    Instead of pointing the way to the One who has the answers, we sometimes cross the line and become the one with the answers (don’t know where I got that one, either).

  97. MostlySunny

    Chuck Swindoll – “Simple Faith” regarding judging…

    1. We never know all the facts.
    2. We are unable to read another’s motives.
    3. We are prejudiced people, never completely objective.
    4. We put ourselves in a position we are not qualified to fill…namely, we play God.

  98. MostlySunny

    “it’s enough to know that whatever comes our way, God knows why.” Dr. Jean Garton

  99. MostlySunny

    “Everything in Christ astonishes me. His spirit overawes me, and His will confounds me. Between Him and whoever else in the world, there is no possible term of comparison. He is truly a being by Himself…I search in vain in history to find the similar to Jesus Christ, or anything which can approach the gospel. Neither history, nor humanity, nor the ages, nor nature, offer me anything with which I am able to compare it or to explain it. Here everything is extraordinary.” Napoleon

    “The Jesus I Never Knew” – Philip Yancy

  100. MostlySunny

    “Jesus is bigger than I think — and greater than I think. Nothing is beyond His ability.” Ann Graham Lotz – “Just Give Me Jesus”:

  101. MostlySunny

    God Is who He says He Is
    God can do what He says He can do
    I am who God says I am
    I can do all things through Christ
    God’s Word is alive and active in me!

    Beth Moore – “Believing God”

  102. MostlySunny

    Takes you places you don’t want to go;
    Costs you more than you want to pay;
    Keeps you longer than you want to stay”
    (don’t know where I got that)

  103. MostlySunny

    “God knows what we don’t, and He can see what we can’t.” Max Lucado – “A Gentle Thunder”

  104. MostlySunny

    False Facts –

    “It’s not what people don’t know that is so dangerous; it’s what they know that just ain’t so.”
    (don’t know where that came from)

  105. MostlySunny

    Knowing Jesus:

    Alters the way I see things
    Alters how I say things
    Alters the way I say things
    Alters when I say things

    Even on my very best day, I’m still just a sinner saved by grace.

    (again, don’t know – possibly Max again)

  106. MostlySunny

    OK. I’ve said enough!

  107. MostlySunny

    P.S. I was tying really fast, so please excuse and forgive the typos. Thanks a bunch!

  108. MostlySunny

    I’m sorry – one more that I just found that I’ve got to put up here:

    “When God closes a door…get your face out of the way and it won’t hurt so much!” Sheri Rose Shepherd

  109. Barbara M. Lloyd

    Well, Sugah, number this 109.

    I just had to find someone who could fix it so I could hear that boy sing….and I did! I thought it sweet…but I wish I could have been his personal trainer. I would have thrown in that famous little Russ Taff shuffle (never mind that the music didn’t call for it…I like it) and then I would have had him put his arm straight down and just a little from his body with that hand standing straight off in a salute to …well just standing off there. And then there’s that standing in place and movin those feet and knees to the beat of the music. And don’t forget the arm that goes up into the air, giving recognition to the Lord above. Gracious, that boy and I could make it happen…..until the real thing came along. Yep, that was fun…but even professional singers can’t successfully imitate “my” Russ.

  110. TabbiKat

    I am still smiling and do hope you find this duo!

    It reminded me of something DeGarmo & Key would have done in spoof fashion on Real Videos à la a restrained Spinal Tap.

    Thank you for sharing…absolutely delightful.

  111. jonny

    “Persue love as if your like depended on it, because it does.” The Apostle Paul

    Thanks MostlySunny! Appreciated then all, especially the one about judging! Oh, and the one about crossing the answer line! And congratulations to all who helped with our successful “take-over” to 100 Say it!s, and beyond = ) (That includes Tori)

  112. bettyrwoodward

    I’m a bit more awake now than last time I was here. Welcome home Tori. Rachel Thank you so much for arranging that concert here in the UK. I did have the privilege of meeting Tori and the girls to and am sure you will one day. Last night I was at a concert and heard my son sing to one of Russ’ backingtracks (Thank you so much, Russ) It was a concert with many artists and Dave was the only one to get a standing ovation!

  113. rachelbaker

    Tori’s back, Tori’s back woo hoo! Looking forward to Monday – do you feel the pressure mounting for a really stonking blog entry?! (They all are anyway).

  114. jonny

    That’s sooo cool!!

  115. jonny

    rachelbaker was too fast for me!! The “That’s sooo cool!!” was for Betty’s son Dave, in case someone missed that, didn’t get the connection.

  116. delightedabroad

    Totally agree with you, Rachelbaker, I’m so curious about hearing news from Tori ! And jonny, your “whoop-bottom” actually is a brainteaser for me ! Is it in the sense of ‘being completely filled with enthusiasm’ ? It is difficult for me to translate because usually you have a bit of text around an expression that explains the context.

  117. jonny

    Picture a tired and extremely stressed parent coming home from a long, difficult day at work. When that parent gets home they find the place a total mess! Somebody put baby sister in the toilet and keeps flushing it to see if she’ll spin around. Oldest sister thought she’d be helpful and starts preparing dinner herself. She’s never been alone in the kitchen before. Total chaos!! Meanwhile another child is being Picasso on one of the walls. That parent may just very well, then and there, open up a serious can of whoop-bottom and start whoopin’ all the children’s bottoms black and blue with a wooden spatula, which said parent just may end up breaking over one of the children’s bottoms!! Got it??

  118. jonny

    Oh, and the term, phrase is usually used with another word instead of “bottom.” One considered more vulgar and/or grass. Only three letters long, begins with an “a” and does with a “s.”

  119. delightedabroad

    Ahhh…that’s exactly what you don’t learn at school here – we’re lucky that one teacher at the language school (which is economically oriented) is an American. She would have known it but as we have long vacation now I didn’t want to bother her. – I was surprised when I realized that you, jonny, post your comments nearly all over the day. I’m aware of the timeshift (7 hours) between Germany and the USA and the “tiny” one between Germany and Finland. Don’t you sleep sometime ??

  120. jonny

    I do sleep. But I also go on-line with my phone, which is right next to my bed. If I do happen to wake up during the night, I just grab the phone and give a quick check. The last few days have been different. I’ve been ill, so I’ve basically been in bed since last Thursday and definately caught up on much sleep!! I’m hoping to make it out to church tonight, though = )

  121. LindaB

    I’m home now and I sure enjoyed reading all your comments since I left! And you made it to 100!!!!! You’re so good!

    I love hearing about life in other countries……and now, thanks to you, Jonny, I know a little about life in Finland! (We just rented that new movie My Life as a Shopaholic, and in it, the heroine tells everyone she’s fluent in Finnish—but she was lying and just trying to impress her new boss……until her boss invites a real Finn to an office party and she’s found out. And here Jonny is talking about learning Finnish! Isn’t that ………well……..sort of…..irrelavant, I guess. Just thought I’d mention that. And the movie is very funny.)

    That phrase is used around here A LOT……..my son-in-law says “HEY! YOU WANT ME TO OPEN UP A CAN OF WHOOP A_ _ ?” He’s never said it to ME……….YET! But the day may be coming! I’d never heard it before——I guess not every slang American phrase is used all over the country. I like that one though.

    Slang phrases are really interesting and I suppose difficult for someone learning a language. My EX son-in-law was from Jordan and one day we told him we were going to a “baby shower’ at church. He thought we were all dressing up, taking the baby in question to the church, shower him off, eat a bite, and then come home.

    Welcome back, Tori! We’re all waiting to hear about the cruise. Don’t kiss me on the mouth though—–unless you like the smell of chorine and Comet.

  122. delightedabroad

    I pray that you’re well soon. The idea with the phone is not bad but Unfortunately I have such a particular one with which you can only telephone or send sms. Obviously I’m not that up to date in terms of technical ‘toys’. These are the moments where the generation gap strikes me – :/ – as if I were that old !

  123. jonny

    I think that too is a Finnish thing, too. They are definately into being up to speed on latest phones and computers and things like that. I can even get a coke from a vending machine using only my phone!!

    And I wouldn’t worry about age around here. I mean seriously, I was going after LindaB only a short time ago, who has to be our most senior member to date ; ) Of course, I didn’t know she belonged to another at the time. You may say she lead me a bit at that = / Sorry LindaB!! But it is good to have you back = ) = ) = ) You were missed!! The film does sound fun. I’ll have to see about renting it = )

  124. jonny

    I think that too is a Finnish thing, too. They are definately into being up to speed on latest phones and computers and things like that. I can even get a coke from a vending machine using only my phone!!

    And I wouldn’t worry about age around here. I mean seriously, I was going after LindaB only a short time ago, who has to be our most senior member to date ; ) Of course, I didn’t know she belonged to another at the time. You might even say she lead me a bit at the beginning… Sorry LindaB!! But it is good to have you back = ) = ) = ) You were missed!! The film does sound fun. I’ll have to see about renting it = )

  125. GRITSinNC

    Tori, SO glad you’re back! Can hardly wait for the blog post and pictures tomorrow.

    jonny, hope you’re better today. Sorry you have health problems…I can relate…but I’m old. Was hoping to be at church right now but just couldn’t do it. How did you wind up in Finland anyhow? Did you ever say?

    delightedabroad, like you I don’t have up-to-date technical toys. My cell phone won’t do all that internet stuff…it will do some but charge me an arm & a leg. I’m eligible for a free phone upgrade but I can’t afford the extra charges involved if I go hi-tech, so I’ll just stick with my computer and camera cell phone. I can text but I don’t like texting anyhow. Must be an age thing.

    MostlySunny, I love your quotes. I saved some of ‘em.

  126. GRITSinNC

    jonny, you posted while I was typing I guess, so I have to post again as I wonder about the most senior member thing. I think it’s probably me…I really think LindaB is younger than I…probably much so. It wouldn’t hurt my feelings though if I’m wrong. :O)

  127. bettyrwoodward

    Hope you soon feel better jonny. I am retired but don’t think I’m the oldest on here. I know of at least 2 that are older and there are probably more. Can’t wait for tomorrow and Tori’s blog.

  128. rachelbaker

    Well, as one of the younger members of this wonderful blogging community, I would just like to admit that I too, only have a normal, plain old mobile phone from which I can call and text but not surf the internet!

  129. delightedabroad

    Talking about age…I hope I’ll grow as old as I feel in the morning when getting up :):)

  130. trishARKANSAS

    I’m back. It was really neat reading all the comments. And learning about different cultures. I really think that we may be able to make it to 200 before tomorrow.

  131. LindaB

    OHG!!!! Jonny, how can you get a Coke from a machine using your phone????? That is just too much!!!

    I used to try to navigate the world of cell phone plans and charges…..but now I have simplified my life—–I have an LG flip phone I bought at WalMart for $50, and I buy minutes on cards from the same place for $30. It has 300 minutes on it and it lasts me two months or more. No monthly bill or hidden charges or surprises! Works for me!

    Hope you feel better today, our resident Finlander!!! Oh and I wanted to ask this question——if you’ve been there so long and you’re just now learning Finnish, how did you get along without knowing the language all this time? Do you sing in English or Finnish?

  132. jonny

    OK, first my phone. One of my old ones, the one I use for organizing happenings, gave up the ghost a little over a year ago. I also don’t have, and am not able to afford, a computer. Also, all my big time organizing was done via text messages, phone calls. I guess that was more than a little frustrating at times for some bigger booking agents, club owners and managers. Well, some Christian friends came to the rescue and pitched and paid for a new phone for me that I could also e-mail with! An added bonus was that I could also go on-line with it. I actually save some money with the new contract I have, FWIW. I can also use this phone as a modem should the good Lord ever decide to bless me with a MacBook = )

    OK, how did I end up here in Finland. After visiting a couple times before during the summer, I stayed with some friends for Christmas back in 1993. For a few months I had a terrible pain in the back of one of my legs. Got worse when I came here and rested up a bit. One family member suggested I have my lower back looked at. I did and it was quite bad. I was told I should not leave the country. Only two ways out and both could’ve made the problem MUCH worse. So I was told. So, my initial two weeks pretty much turned into a year in a day. Treatment was successful, but afterwards I was not interested in getting back into what I’d been doing before and started getting involved with the music scene over here.

    Personally, I’d be happy if we made it to 150!! But 200 would be even better = )

  133. LindaB

    “I hope I’ll grow as old as I feel in the morning when getting up!” –Delighted

    ROFLOL OVER AND OVER!!! Good one! I feel the same!

  134. jonny

    OK, LindaB, one goes to the Coke, or Pepsi, machine, looks for a certain telephone number on it, not all machines offer this service, one then dials the number, hears a voice letting one know how much it’s gonna cost them, then let’s one know it’s a done deal. The Coke machine gets all excited and let’s one know one is good to go for getting something within the amount the number one called allows one to. It’s then put on your next phone bill. One pays a little extra for this service.

    English is the second language in and around Helsinki. I can do my on-line banking in English, fill out all sorts of paperwork in English, there are now even movie tickets in English. My day job for some time was working in English language daycares. Some things have been tricky over the years, but friends have been helpful as well.

  135. Barbara M. Lloyd

    I’ll jump right in here while Johnny is teaching LindaB how to get coke out of a machine without paying for it. (You have no idea, Johnny, how much that lady gets out of machines)….Did I say “jump” right in here….let’s make that walk right in here….for I am the most senior member on Tori’s blog. I will be 79 in December.

    I’m the No. 1 Russ Taff fan….and there are 32 No. 2 Russ Taff fans. There would be a lot more but those 32 are fiercy loyal to their titale and have refused to let any more badges be made. The next will be No. 3’s. I may as well tell y’all the whole story.

    You think Linda B is a sweet, innocent child…well, she and themema are making plans to come to my funeral and steal my No. 1 badge right out of the casket. However, I am going to set a mousetrap so that whichever one dares to put their smutty little hands on it will get a surprise. Wouldn’t be surprised if they were scraping with one another on the floor trying to get that badge….and I will just reach out and hit them on the heads. That badge is going with me.

  136. jonny

    Maybe you just have to come back from the dead for a little while and give those two a serious dose of some resurrected, #1 Russ Taff fan whoop-bottom!! And it isn’t free using the phone. It’s actually a little more expensive, you just don’t have to physically pay for it until your next phone bill, SO that may put an end to any ideas LindaB may have of trying to use her phone on any unsuspecting Coke machines back where she lives!!

  137. GRITSinNC

    Catching up with the comments since I was last here has been the most fun I’ve had lately. I know…I lead a pretty dull life or ya’ll are just unusually entertaining.

    Barbara, you made my day…you’re a bit older than I! (I’m 75) But how come you look like you’re in better condition than I am?

    jonny, I enjoyed your explanations & descriptions. How is your back now? Sounds like my son has a phone similar to yours, except yours must have all the typewriter keys instead of letters on the numbers since you type so much. He uses his as a modem to get on the computer (he has an old computer of mine) because he lives in the sticks where there’s no internet service. Of course he’s on dial-up and that gets miserable sometimes.

    Delighted, I agree with LindaB…that’s one of the best sayings I ever heard. Problem is, I think I’ve lived to be as old as I feel when I get up in the morning. Of course it could always be worse.

    I can’t use a pay-as-you go cell phone because mine is my only phone…I gave up my land line several years ago, but pay as you go is great for those who don’t use their cell phones much.

    Thanks for the fun ya’ll have supplied in Tori’s absence. So glad I found this blog several months ago.


  138. jonny

    Back is good, thanks. Nope, normal phone keypad and a rather active right thumb. Not a typewriter type keypad. Those cost much more.

  139. delightedabroad

    Reading your comments is such an entertainment ! Now the day can start for me, the sun is shining, I can organize my day as I like and am even free to have a catnap later on… AND I’m curiously waiting for Tori’s news !!

  140. bettyrwoodward

    Well today should be the day of a new blog from Tori. Can’t wait. Jonny I can’t believe you type so much on a phone keypad is your thumb twice the size that it should be???

  141. jonny

    Leiber delighted, I believe a more common way to phrase what you wrote might be, “Reading your comments is sooo entertaining!!!” But “Reading your comments is such an entertainment” works for me on a few levels as well = )

    My hands are quite big thanks to a mom with big hands who would not marry anyone with smaller hands than hers. Another reason I didn’t in with a quartz keypad/keyboard is that I’ve been using this type around 12 years now. If I’ve survived that long using this system what’s another year or two until I get a computer again?? I truly hope we make at least 150 before the new blog entry = /

  142. delightedabroad

    You’re sooo right, jonny, I remember my teacher saying that verbs are used more often than nouns in English phrases … one more reason to keep on writing ! :) It seems as if I entered a community of “blog-addicts”. Hmmm, I think that’s where I feel good. Let’s see if we reach the ambitious 150 or more !

  143. bettyrwoodward

    I guess the 150 depends on what time of day Tori posts the blog (if of course she has time!)

  144. jonny

    Well, after we reach 150, or Tori starts actively bloging again ( I’m never quite sure if that’s with one “g” or two), whichever comes first, I think I’m gonna take a serious Saying it! break = )

  145. rachelbaker

    Oh jonny! I can understand that your thumb needs a rest. but please never take a serious ‘Saying it!’ break – we need you.

  146. GRITSinNC

    Ya’ll didn’t hit 150 yet? We musn’t let Tori down with our blogging prowess. :o)

    Came in hoping her blog update would be up but I know I’m expecting too much. It’s still early and she’s got to write it and upload pictures, and I think there’s a 1-hr time difference between where I am on the East Coast & her area. Maybe not. Anyhow, I’ll try to be patient. Just overly anxious.

    Sorry Delivered missed out on our blogging fun…no telling what number we would have made it to. Missed her.

    jonny, I can’t imagine typing all those words with my thumb on a regular phone key pad. Guess practice makes perfect.

    See ya’ll when we get to responding to Tori’s blog about the cruise. If that takes too long, I’ll see you before that.

    Have a blessed day!


    I DON’T BELIEVE THIS!!!!!!!!!!!
    And, here I am, rushing to the library to here what Tori has to say! 146 responses! Yall got REALLY busy after I shut down on Friday!
    Hey, Grits! Good to hear from you! And, Jonny – I hope you are feeling better by now. How’s your family doing these days?
    I still have not made the pepper jelly. Today is the day, though. Have been putting it off, little intimidated about it, but if I succeed, then so be it! If not, then I have only wasted 7 cups of suger & 2 lbs of peppers!

    AND, WHAT? TORI, its not like you have alot to do & all! Sure thought I’d be holding my sides by now & getting expelled from the library! Are you even really back, or did you take a detour somewhere else after seeing all the SayIts!

  148. delightedabroad

    Thanks GRITSinNC for broadening my vocabulary, I had to look up “prowess” – never heard that before. =/ I can nearly feel the excitement rise…

  149. rachelbaker

    DELIVERED – you mean all our ‘say its’ didn’t have you holding your sides and getting expelled from the Library?! Ah there you go, we may have staged a mutiny, but we’re not Tori, and we need her back!

  150. jonny

    Yup, she can blog away now! 150, unless someone was a wee bit faster than me = / Thanks everyone who supported the “take over.” It’s been real, it’s been fun… and yes, it’s even been real fun at times = ) Peace!!


    I am SOOOOO proud of myself! I actually logged in w/ that password from h**l from MEMORY! Yeah, I’m still on the password kick! Its just humongus!
    Hey, Grits has a name now! yay you! Nice to meet you, Celia!
    LindaB – call Tori and tell her she’s late! I’m getting ready to email her right now – withdrawals are setting in!


    HA! Did it again! Woohoo………….
    OK, folks – am on my way to really, truly make this pepper jelly! Will be back in a couple of hours to let yall know how it went. Ya might want to send up a few prayers – I’m being adventuresome & reckless – look, Ma, no goggles or gloves!
    Hey, FinMan – how’s it going? I think that this is entry #152. Wow! I think that she’s afraid to come back! Did she get lost in the pile of or what? Did the little yappy dogs lick her to death? Or did she see all the entries & get back on the boat?

    Come on, Tori – I know you’re reading this! We miss you too much now!

  153. LindaB

    “LindaB – call Tori and tell her she’s late!” — Johnnie

    Do you really think Tori would give ME her phone number???? Do you think she’s crazy???? THAT would be a big mistake!

    I AM going to pray for you, Johnnie, as you make your pepper jelly today. I don’t can ANYTHING ’cause I’ve heard of people getting food poisoning and dying from eating canned stuff that wasn’t sealed properly and I can’t take that kind of pressure! And the resulting lawsuit! People who can fruits and vegetables should be perfectionists who pay close attention to every little detail of the whole canning procedure! And that would NOT be ME!

  154. Barbara M. Lloyd

    Oh Linda, all of those canned jellies, preserves, pickles, vegetables…look so beautiful on the pantry shelves….you almost don’t want to use them….and you leave the pantry door open just so you may see them lined up there everytime you go in or out of the kitchen. Besides being yummy…they are a work of art. The only danger comes if you don’t hear the lids go “pop.”….and you can test them by pushing down in the centers. No danger there, sweet pea.

    Well,our Tori is back….y-e-a-h, blog-e-ville!

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