Friday, December 27, 2013
(By the way, the "B" word is not a word I use, but it is the name of his blog. He doesn't use off color language, it's just funny.)
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
After dinner, we exchanged gifts. My gifts were a big hit; I think everyone was delighted, and of course that meant I was delighted too! Almost six-year-old granddaughter got a Sorry game and a joke book; three-year-old got a Princess play set (generic princesses, not Disney), baby grandson got a set of three vehicles, car, train and boat. One d-i-l got a whimsical owl clock for their playroom, where she already had a decal mural of a woodland scene, and the other d-i-l, who is from Texas, got a large Texas star to put on her wall. I think she was the most thrilled; it will be interesting to see where she decides to hang it!
Husband was in charge of our sons' presents. One got an electric tool, a drill or something (I'm very vague about tools), and the other rejected all our suggestions, and we couldn't think of anything, so he got cash.
My son's gift to me was a very special and thoughtful one. I have a small collection of little cat figurines, and have tried to match them to individual cats. A black cat cut-out with a votive candle for Shadow; a clear glass cat for Crystal, a wooden cat for Woody. (Of course, not all our cats' names lend themselves to a figurine.) I have long been keeping my eye out for a frosted glass cat for Frosty, and son found one! However, at home he noticed that it was clear, not frosted. So he found out how to "frost" glass, and did it for me!
Oh, and husband gave me a small gift even though I had shown him a long list of all the new and new-to-us things we had bought for our house since moving in - rugs, buffet table and lamps, framing of pictures, etc, etc, etc. He gave me a plastic duck call from Duck Commander! The girls had a ball with it!
The children played, ate M&Ms, and we halfway watched a Christmas movie on TV. (I don't even remember which one.)
Sunday morning, out of town "kids" went to church with us, and we were all going to eat together at a Mexican restaurant. They (son and family in town) never showed up, and finally called. They were at the other one of the same name, a small, local chain! So, each group stayed where we were after all.
It rained all day Sunday; we got over 5 inches before it was over. Son and d-i-l left shortly after lunch, and husband and I just relaxed with books and movies, coffee and comfortable clothes the rest of the afternoon and evening.
Today, we drove about 2-2 1/2 hours to visit my aunt, my father's sister-in-law and one of the only two left to either of us from our parents' generation. She is not doing well, is completely dependent on friends and housekeepers/sitters. She remains cheerful, though, and still has her mind, and we had a good visit! Afterward we took our friends (the ones who take care of her) out to eat and to see their daughter at work. We hadn't seen the daughter in a long time; she's always been at work when we've visited before.
Tomorrow, I'll catch up on laundry, taking out garbage, and vacuuming and cleaning the house again, and visit some neighbors. We'll wait until next week, maybe after my birthday to take down the Christmas decorations.
Friday, December 6, 2013
The colors are fading from the brilliant hues of October and November to a gentle hint of color, very soft in the morning mists we've been having lately, and many trees are bare already. Just in time for Christmas decorations! ( I always thought it was odd when we lived on the Gulf Coast that the trees stayed brilliantly colored among the Santas and snowmen in the front yards.)
We've been planning and deciding where we're going to put our tree and other decorations in this house. We put wreaths on the front gate, one on each side, and husband stringed up lights along the top of the gate. However, they are the bright bluish/white LED lights, and I'm not real happy with them. I prefer traditional yellow lights. He said he won't mind taking them down and putting up our old icicle lights.
He set up the outdoor Nativity in the side yard, but it's behind a fence which partially blocks the view. I think it might do better in the front yard, where passers-by can see it through the gate.
The tree is in the living room, in front of a window. We have a tree skirt, but I'm afraid Woody the cat will make it into a bed. He decided to help me decorate:
I put the Nativity on a table in the living room, and my little village on a card table in the den. The two little elves of my mother's that I kept are in the kitchen windowsill, making it merry and bright!
Our older cat, Spite, is no longer allowed inside the house. He stays in the sunroom now. It's heated and air conditioned,and protected from the elements, and in the daytime he can go outside. He kept using our den carpet as a bathroom, and it doesn't smell so nice unless I keep spraying with deodorizer every day and light scented candles. I'm really sad for him, because he's a sociable cat and enjoys company. We go out there with him several times in the day and evening. He's the first cat we've ever had that gave us this kind of trouble. He's gotten worse since we moved, but he always liked to use the bathroom and kitchen rugs for his "business". We could pick them up and wash them, but this is a big room-size rug. The sunroom has a brick floor, and he does use his litter box out there!
Friday, November 15, 2013
Thanksgiving will soon be here. Our son and daughter-in-law are coming from a city just north of here, possibly will stay overnight. I hope so, we don't see enough of them. (Of course we could go there just as easily.)
Son here and family will be going to spend the holiday with his wife's mother and other relatives.
Winter has arrived; we have had our first frost. The leaves have been pretty here, especially the popcorn trees, which are invasive and not welcome, but I still like the fall colors!
We also have a small crape myrtle growing under the oak tree in our back yard. It had lovely dark pink long-lasting blossoms last summer and brilliant red foliage this fall. I would like to transplant it where it can grow larger, but don't know if hubby is willing or able. Maybe we could at least clear out the undergrowth where it is.
This Sunday is Shoebox Sunday at church. Ours are ready, and I've paid the shipping online, so I can "Follow our boxes" with a bar-coded label.
I have Christmas cards and newsletters ready to send early, to let friends know of our change of address. Most of them know already, but they may have forgotten, and a few may not know.
I will not start decorating until after the first of December, though. I feel that Thanksgiving is important enough and special enough to have its own time, a quiet time with orange and gold colors, pilgrims and turkeys, and thankful prayers.
After the holidays are over, around mid-January, I will have knee replacement surgery! I have severe arthritis in both knees, and have been in pain, sometimes more and sometimes less, for more than 15 years. I will have them done one at a time. I am so looking forward to being able to walk and stand without pain again!
Monday, October 21, 2013
Overly indulgent grandma (me) quietly offered to her daddy (my son) to let her have it and I could easily buy another one for the shoebox. Wisely, my son said, "No, she has to learn." Quietly and gently he explained to her that she has many coloring books, but the little girl who lives far, far away has no coloring books or toys. Unconvinced, my granddaughter left the room in tears.
Later, after peace and calm were restored, she happily helped her sister and me pack the shoeboxes. I added pictures and notes, and together we prayed over them yesterday.
Tuesday, October 15, 2013
Monday, September 30, 2013
Got an email today from the neighborhood Homeowners' Association. This community believes in caring for others; it was a note letting us know that one of our neighbor families is going through a hard time and may need some help. I went over there to see if I could take their garbage can out to the curb for them, but they weren't at home. I'm wondering if they were in a hospital.
Sunday, September 8, 2013
Prayer is a wonderful gift that God has given to each of us, even me, that we can approach Him, that we can come into His Presence just as we are, full of fear and worry, lacking faith and love. He will accept us just as we are, and will give us wisdom, the peace that passes understanding, joy, love, unity with Him, salvation, forgiveness, reconciliation, understanding, blessing, faith. He makes it possible for us to do everything He has required of us. “Everyone who asks receives; who seeks finds; and to he who knocks, the door will be opened.” Matthew 7:8
Saturday, September 7, 2013
Husband has been working like a Trojan all week, mixing, vacuuming, adding water, pumping out water, driving across town to the pool company, then doing it all over again. Gradually it changed from dark green to medium, then light green, then we could see bottom! The vacuum for the algae on the bottom is a strange contraption attached to a tube that suctions it out onto the ground. He has it piped away from the house, and our yard it big so it's not going into our neighbor's yard either. It hasn't rained for 2-3 weeks, but the salt, etc probably isn't good for the grass.
Now it's blue and pretty again! Looking like it used to:
Sunday, August 25, 2013
I'm hoping we'll be able to use our pool again before it's too late. The filter pump broke and it's been in the shop a week. Husband decided to buy a new one so we'll have a spare and won't have this layover again, but he forgot that the adapter is still on the old one, at the shop! Meanwhile, the water has turned completely green again, dark green. Not bad for a reflecting pond, but not what we want in a swimming pool! It didn't take long to turn, it was amazing.
We miss it, we did enjoy it in the late afternoon, after the sun went behind the house. Then we didn't have to bother with sunscreen. The pool exercises for arthritis were helping my knees, the "noodles" are helpful and fun; it's fun to just sit on one and float all over the pool, too!
Daughter-in-law (the new mother) hasn't yet been able to use the pool; she was "out of commission" for a few weeks after childbirth, then it rained hard every day for awhile, and now the filter pump's broken. Frustrating! The children have only been swimming twice. I hope we'll be using it more next summer. The baby will be one year old and we all can enjoy it together then!
The older girl has started kindergarten, and loves it. She's happy with her teacher and with her classmates, and enjoys learning new songs and games and all the activities. She looks so grown up in her uniform! And she wears glasses at school, but not at home. I've seen pictures of her with her glasses, and she modeled them for me. I told her they look good on her; she looks very smart, and she said, "Why, thank you!"
The two-year-old is a happy child. She loves kissing her baby brother and playing with her sister. She misses her sister on school days, and says she's going to school, too! I think she's referring to KinderMusik, which she loves.
We're gradually getting more active in church. We're in Sunday school and "Forever Young" (the senior adult fellowship group), and attending a Bible study on the Book of Revelation. Very deep and interesting!
We are having a little flurry of doctor and dentist appointments, getting established with new ones here. Bought tickets for a Labor Day jazz fest, looking forward to that! Also, we'll probably attend a patriotic festival and fireworks later that day, postponed from the Fourth of July as it was raining that day (and it was also the day our grandson was born).
We had visitors today. Husband's brother and sister-in-law stopped by on their way home from the beach. (They live north of here, and the beach is south of here.) We had lunch with them, and then went to the park and spent time with our children and grandchildren, so they got to see them, too. It was a nice afternoon! I hope they'll come back when they can stay longer!
Thursday, August 1, 2013
We brought two blue Lazyboy chairs when we moved, and have added a chocolate brown loveseat and a multi-colored area rug, with large flowers of brown, red, and blue, with green leaves on a tan background. It pulls in the blue and brown of the furniture, and brightens up the dark wood floor. The cats like it too! (That's very important, you know.) I do want to get drapes for the large window and French door on either side of the fireplace, but that can wait.
The children and grandchildren have been over to swim, and we've swum without them, too. I copied some pool exercises for arthritis from the internet, and looking forward to doing them. We bought "noodles" (brightly colored flexible foam long noodle-shaped pool toys) that I will use for some of my exercises. One of them; the other one is husband's, for fun!
We joined a church, the one our children belong to. It's a little further away than others, but it'll be more convenient to go where the kids go, and be there for their special times. This past weekend they had a note-burning ceremony, in appreciation and celebration that all the buildings are completely paid for! Saturday night was a hamburger supper, a balloon release, and a musical program. Sunday morning the Sunday school classes had refreshments before the lesson (I took biscuits, and was very glad that my oven was working!), and a very meaningful church service. Representatives from each generation came forward and we were reminded of each generation's contributions to the church fellowship and work of Christ in the community, and the future represented by the youngest generations, the teens and children. The young woman presenting this part of the program got choked up, and I had to wipe my eyes.
I'm learning to make wind chimes! I repaired one, a bamboo one, and remade a small tinkly brass one! A little tricky, but just takes patience, not hard at all. I like the sound of the bamboo ones (we have one that didn't need repair, also), and the tinkle of the small brass one will do well with them. Now I'm waiting for a little wind!
Saturday, July 13, 2013
My husband made a return trip to our "old" house and came back with a truck and flatbed trailer full! He says we need to make one more trip.
Fortunately for us and for our friends, we were able to offer our house for them to live in while they build, as their current house sold much faster than they anticipated. We didn't want to put ours on the market until we had emptied it, and now we know it will be lived in and taken care of.
My aunt has been ailing. She apparently had a stroke and was unable to put any weight on her legs. With therapy at a rehab center, she has improved greatly and called me this morning! She sounded good, and is hopeful about returning home!
Our older son and his wife came to visit today. We spent the afternoon with younger son and his family (the one with the new baby). Then we came home and swam in our pool for the first time! We had a new liner put in and converted it to a salt water pool a couple of weeks ago.
Wednesday, June 12, 2013
Husband followed the movers in his pickup truck, but it overheated and a three hour drive took ten! It was better after he stopped for supper, and the sun went down, and he and the truck had a chance to cool off.
But, all turned out all right all right, we're here now and getting our pictures and knick-knacks arranged just how we want them.
We splurged on a major purchase this afternoon. An oriental rug shop nearby is having a sale and we went in "just to look around." Well, we both fell in love with a Chinese Aubusson rug with colors and patterns that go perfectly with our living room furniture. We did get a good price on it, but it was way more than we had planned to spend this afternoon!
Friday, May 17, 2013
Saturday, April 27, 2013
The house we are looking at passed all inspections: home, termite, and septic tank! We will close soon, and will start moving soon after! I will show pictures after it's officially ours. I have pictures now, but they show the current owner's furniture and possessions, and I don't want to put that out on the internet.
Tuesday, April 16, 2013
Friday, April 5, 2013
Tuesday, April 2, 2013
It's a disappointment, but we're counting our blessings:
1. We discovered the problems with the house before we bought it! And could legally back out of the contract.
2. We have an excellent real estate agent who really knows her stuff, has good connections with relevant professionals, has a ton of patience and doesn't mind working hard, and a good humored, pleasant personality.
3. We haven't sold our house here, and so have a comfortable place to live while searching.
4. We have had safe traveling up and down I-65 at least twice a month for about a year now. Nothing to take for granted! We still take note of the exit near our accident in 2007.
5. Our son and d-i-l have a room in their home for us!
6. We can afford to do this.
Sunday, March 31, 2013
Friday, March 8, 2013
This one is not especially beautiful outside, but is very nice inside and fits all our needs. I can envision where we will place our furniture, and where the grandchildren will play!
So, the process will begin very soon. I have already begun throwing away old magazines and papers (or recycling), giving away books I will never read or read again, giving unwanted items to thrift stores. We may or may not have a garage sale, probably not.
We'll miss our friends and our church here, but I'm sure we'll be happy there once we get settled in.
Update: Closing date is set for April 29!
Wednesday, February 20, 2013
I thought I'd do this to organize my entries, since I write about so many different facets of my life.
I'm still in the process of moving entries to the appropriate pages, and I may never get around to moving all of them. I hope this won't be too confusing. Let me know if you have any suggestions. Thanks!
Monday, February 18, 2013
See if this works.
ETA: Aha, I have to post pictures with Chrome now. Blogger's made a change.
By the way, this was the setting for our Valentine Dinner Thursday night. My husband and I ate at home by candlelight, in the living room on the glass topped table with the fancy china.
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" width="375" height="500" alt="Valentine dinner for two">
I guess Blogger made the change; I could do it the same as always on LiveJournal. Now I'll try doing it with Chrome. I'm on IE now.
Thursday, January 17, 2013
Update: The house we like is no longer available. One of the heirs wants to buy it. A lesson in patience!
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
The Bishop showed Christ to him. "I was a stranger and you took me in." He forgave the theft of his valuables, and made a gift of it, telling him by his actions, "Go, and sin no more."
Jean had a struggle with his soul after that encounter, as we all do. Accept Christ and His mercy and forgiveness, and follow Him by showing His love to others? Or continue in our sin, go on hating our enemies and seeking revenge, grabbing what we can, stepping on anyone who gets in our way?
He tried by his own strength to live up to the Bishop's standard, but failed miserably when he encountered a boy who lost a coin. Stepping on it, Jean refused to let the child have it, threatening him until the boy ran away. Immediately, he was plunged into deepest despair, bitter conviction, acknowledgment that he was a sinner in need of the Savior.
It's not an easy decision, and it must be made daily. There are many temptations along the way. Jean became a wealthy man, a leader in his community. A woman was fired from his factory; he could ignore her and send her away, or choose to seek medical care for her, be with her in her last moments, care for her child after her death.
Jean Valjean, a man of wealth and power, got down on his knees in the mud to rescue a workman pinned under a heavy cart, knowing that this action would lead to suspicions from his old enemy, Inspector Javert.
Later, when Javert's suspicions were allayed by the arrest of another man thought to be Valjean, it would have been so easy to let the mistake stand. To let another man be imprisoned for life in his stead. Another struggle with his conscience, with God. In the end, he chose to do the hard thing, the right thing. He came forward and revealed his true identity, bringing himself (now no longer a young man) and the young Cosette back to a life of running and hiding.
Valjean later aligns himself with a revolution against the French government. Inspector Javert, now a spy of the government who has infiltrated the protesters' headquarters, has been discovered and is tied up awaiting death at their hands. Valjean agrees to do it, but instead frees Javert, his old enemy who had devoted his life to his pursuit and ruin. Javert, conflicted by his devotion to law and duty and his debt to Valjean, a criminal, threw himself off a bridge. He could not reconcile justice and mercy.
This is the contrast between the two: Javert is stern, unforgiving, a symbol of righteousness and justice, law and order. He knows no mercy, no compassion. The law must not be waived for anyone, for any reason. Valjean, who is shown forgiveness and grace, comes to exemplify mercy, compassion, and unselfish love.