Wednesday, November 22, 2017

The Wednesday Hodgepodge

For one reason or another I have not participated in the HP in about a month.  So, it's good this Thanksgiving Eve to join in the question answering.

1. tightly do you cling to tradition when it comes to holiday gatherings and celebrations? For instance do you always do the cooking, never eat at home, always go to grandma's, never miss the parade, always watch football, never change the menu, always eat at 2 PM, etc.? Have you ever celebrated Christmas or Thanksgiving away from hearth, home, and family? How did that feel?
We do not really have any "real" Thanksgiving tradition.  I have cooked, and we have gone to the country club buffet (it's awesome).  Thanksgiving took on a huge change when my Mom and MIL no longer hosted it.  It was time for me to step up to the plate and I can assure you that I have not done near as well as either of them.
At Christmas we do have a "set" tradition.  We always have our family Christmas on Christmas Eve unless we celebrate it a bit earlier when our daughter and her family can be here.  When family lives away you often have to adjust your tradition.
For many years we lived 1000 miles away from my parents and there were Chritmases that we went to celebrate with them and, while I always preferred to be home, it was very special to share a Christmas with them.

2. it easy for you to ask for help or are you a do-it-yourselfer? How is that a good/bad thing?

I'd have to say that I'm a do-it-yourselfer.  I have asked for help and am certainly not above it but, as I said, I prefer to do most things, especially when it comes to meal preparation, by myself.  I will allow some help in the clean up process, but again, I just prefer they sit at the bar and keep me company while I work away.  I guess it can be bad in that I probably wear myself out quicker than if I allowed folks to help me.

3. Abundance...what is there an abundance of in your kitchen?

Gadgets and dishes.  I absolutely love dishes and have several sets.  And, I also love kitchen gadgets.  I so enjoy browsing kitchen stores to see if there is some gadget I don't have or even know about.

4. Name...the smallest thing you're thankful for? the biggest?

Well, this may sound so very silly but the smallest thing would be makeup.  My goodness, I cannot imagine my life without it. ~chuckle~

The biggest, without a doubt whatsoever, is my salvation and the assurance of knowing that I have an eternal home with my Lord and Savior.  Nothing else can compare to this!

5. Key...What do you think is the key to living a more grateful life?

Cultivate the habit of always being thankful , realize that bumps in the road are a part of life and always, always have an attitude of gratefulness. 

6. State your own random thought here.

This little guy called me yesterday morning and told me that he had come up with an original joke and he wanted to tell it to me.  Let me preface this by telling you, for those that do not know, Clancy's last name is Broome.  Okay, here's the joke:

Why were the Broome's late for school?
They overswept.

I was pretty impressed and of course I laughed.  I mean, Clancy is only 9 years old and he came up with this all by himself.

May you and yours have a memory making Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Let's Chat

Let me see, now where did I last leave off?  It seems my blogging has been "hit or miss" the past couple of weeks but hopefully it will be a bit more regular now.  It is a busy time of year, so we shall see how it goes.  But, hang in there with me.............

This past Wednesday I had my eye appointment with a retina specialist at The Hamiliton Eye Institute in Memphis, TN.  The HEI is located downtown and it is as big as many hospitals.  We were told by one of the nurses that the first two floors are all related to the eye and the 3rd floor is dermatology.  They have specialists for absolutely every part of the eye.

My visit went very well.  I saw a Dr. Caladez and he said that the laser retina surgery I had in July looked good and it was done correctly.  I was thrilled with that news.  He did say that I have some retina issues that indicate I will likely have further retina tears and/or detachment.  I hated to hear that but he also told me that they could be repaired if taken care of promptly.  That was good to hear.  I ask him how I could not have known that I had retinal tears before I went in for my check up.  He said that can happen at times but generally you will know through flashing bright lights or other visual impairments.  I will be most in tune with any visual changes and will be seeing a specialist every 6 months.  

The day before we left to go to Memphis I woke  up with hoarseness and a somewhat sore throat.  It wasn't bad so I didn't do anything about it.  On Tuesday I woke up with no voice and the beginnings of a bad cold.  I knew I could not head out like that so I ran in to see our family Dr.  He gave me a couple of prescriptions and a shot and off we went.  I am still dealing with the remains and likely will for a few more days.  It is just so aggravating!

Our Thanksgiving will be very low key.  Hubby, our son and I will join our friends at our country club's wonderful Thanksgiving buffet.  Our DIL and the gran girls will be in Oklahoma with our daughter and her family.  We'll be eating at 11:00 and then I plan to come home and begin the process of decorating for Christmas.

I actually decorated the dining table and sideboard this weekend.  The decor that I do will be pretty but it will be kept to a minimum.  I've had my years of  decorating every inch of the house and that is just not my "gig" anymore.  The problem with decorations is that they have to be taken down.  Ugh,  That is no fun to me!  But, once I get my decor out I'll show it to you.

I have most of my Christmas shopping done but have got to get it all wrapped.  I have made a little fudge (for the chosen few). ~big chuckle~ I have my Christmas cards done, but they need to be addressed, stuffed, stamped with return address and stamp and then, finally, sealed.  Yep, there's a lot to preparing and sending Christmas cards, not to mention just getting appropriate pictures for them. I kept saying this will be my last year, but I just keep on sending them. 

I plan to get some cooking done ahead of time and put in the freezer.  Our daughter and the Grandsons will come the week before Christmas to celebrate with us and I want to do some advance preparation. I need to get started on that.

In spite of all that is going on in our country, the unrest, the hatred, the disrespect, the evil, there is still so much for us to be thankful for as we celebrate this week.  May these be the things that you are most mindful of as you celebrate.


Monday, November 13, 2017

Monday's Musings

Just in case you didn't realize it, 7 weeks from today is Christmas.  I know it's said frequently, but time really does fly by.  I've pretty much finished my Christmas shopping except for the gift cards that I will be giving.  Now, to get the gifts wrapped.  Ugh!  just not something I do not get excited about or enjoy. But, never fear, I will get it done!

Our landscaper and yard maintenance crew came last week to change out some plants, refresh the bark in the beds, add pine straw to some of the beds and plant pansies.

Our original landscape was done almost 2 years ago but we have, along with our landscaper, decided that we needed to replace some of the plants with some more fitting for the area they were in.  We are very thrilled with the change.  And, when the pansies get full grown they should put on quite the show.

Last Thursday was my Dad's 88th birthday.  I had a little birthday gathering for him over at the assisted living facility where he lives.

I had this jester hat and decided it would be fun for him to put on.  He was such a good sport about it and we all had a good laugh when he put it on.

I took some photo props and the residents enjoyed playing along with me while I snapped their pictures.

A few folks dropped by to join in on the festivities as well.  We so appreciated their effort.

One of my brother's send Dad 4 pints of ice cream.  They arrived right in the middle of his party so he got to stop and open the box.  Daddy absolutely LOVES ice cream, so it was the perfect gift. Apparently you can order anything on the internet. ~chuckle~

When I asked Daddy about doing a birthday party he didn't think it was necessary.  I told him that it wasn't every day that someone gets to celebrate 88 years of life and I thought it was necessary!  He enjoyed the celebration so much and was so glad that I went ahead with it, even though he didn't think it was necessary. ~smile~ It's the stuff memories are made of!

NOTE: We'll be off to Memphis tomorrow for my eye appointment Wednesday morning at The Hamilton Eye Institute.  After this trip we are going to "stay put" until the first of the year.  

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

The Teacup/Mug Exchange Reveal

This is my 2nd teacup/mug exchange to participate in with the lovely Stephanie over at The Enchanting Rose.  Stephanie spends a whole lot of time preparing for this exchange.  We fill out a form that she provides if we want to participate.  She then pairs us up with two others (most are bloggers but some are not).  One we receive from and one we send to and then we end up with two new friends.  There were 211 women who participated this time and they were from all over the world  Isn't that neat?  Teacups and mugs bringing women together across the globe.

I have a lot of fun preparing my box to send and of course, it's just so much fun opening the box from "my person."  Now, let me share my box with you.

I received my box from Debbie over at She Graces Her Home in God's Beauty. And, she just happens to be Stephanie's Mom.  Debbie is a jewel with a heart of gold and I'm excited to share with you the awesome box that she sent my way.

Note: my pictures are less than stellar and I'm not even sure why ~made me sick~  but, on with the story.........
Even the outside of my package was fancy and as you can tell, I was dead serious about getting into it.  And, in case you are wondering where I was, I was at my "little room" at my husband's office.

I just kept pulling things out, I felt like a kid at Christmas!  So, so much fun!

The biggie was this gorgeous cup and saucer.  We could exchange a cup and saucer or a mug.  I chose a cup and saucer because there's just something a little more special about a pretty cup and saucer.  And, that being said,  I always drink my coffee out of one of the new insulated mugs.  This cup and saucer is a lovely ivory china with a lovely gold design.  Very, very pretty and one I would have picked out for myself.

My extra's were awesome.  I love the Caramel Vanilla Cream coffee pods and she tucked in the box  to enjoy with my scones and raspberry jam, grown by Debbie and her husband.  An inspiring devotional book with a wooden bookmark and some magnets were also enclosed. 

And, to add to the loveliness of the package were these tiny little envelopes, hand made by Debbie.  Tucked away inside these envelopes were Southern sayings.  I such fun opening and reading each one of them.  Such a labor of thoughtfulness.

Debbie went "over the top" in selecting the items for me and I have and am enjoying all of them.  If you haven't met Debbie, you need to click on the link above and go pay her a visit.  You will be so glad you did.

My package went to Linda from Oregon.  Her blog is Lady Linda.  If you care to see the box I sent to her, click on the link and check it out.  I thoroughly enjoyed picking it all out and hopefully Linda is enjoying it just as much.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Monday's Musings

Well, it is so good to be back in blogland!  I don't know if you missed me but I sure did miss you.  I've been busy visiting around this weekend to catch up with as many of you as possible.  Hubby and I have been on the go lately and have one more trip next week and then we hope to be home the remainder of the year.  

Last weekend we had the rare opportunity to be with both of Tommy's sisters and their husbands.  One lives in Tacoma, WA and one in the Atlanta area, so it's not often that this happens.

One was passing through in route to Branson, MO  and one was in town to attend her husband's 50th high school reunion.

Our time together was short but was certainly better than nothing.  With all of us living many miles apart, it is often difficult to work out getting together.  

Last week we met dear friends in Branson, MO. for a few days.

  We stayed at one of our most favorite places, The Keeter Center (pictured above), located on the campus of the College of the Ozarks. It only has 15 rooms and it has a lodge like feel to it and is as lovely as any 5 star hotel.  And, they go above and beyond to make your stay exceptional!

There's so much to do in the Branson area.  We enjoyed several shows, and, of course, some retail therapy.  The men would move from bench to bench while we ladies shopped. ~smile~

The Keeter Center offers plenty of enjoyment itself.  They have the best ice cream, desserts and pastries. A very fine restaurant  and, they generally have some type of exhibit to enjoy.

We've been going to Branson for several years and always enjoy our time there.  This time we especially enjoyed seeing The Texas Tenors in concert.  You may remember that they won America's Got Talent 8 years ago.  Their voices will bring chills.  If you are ever given an opportunity to see them, I can guarantee that you will not be disappointed!

And, while we were away, this fella paid our across the street neighbors a visit.  Yes, showed up in their backyard.  Our subdivision  has two ponds, one small (behind our house) and a larger one across from us.  This is the 3rd alligator to show up in about 20+ years.  I pray that I never open my door and have one looking back at me.
I'm sure, like me, your heart is saddened once again by the tragedy in Texas yesterday morning.  These folks left for church yesterday just like many of us, never knowing it would be their last time. I can't help but wonder, when will it end?

Friday, October 27, 2017

My 1000th Blog Post

WHAT ???? Is this really my 1000th post?  In March of 2009 I began this journey called blogging.  I really had no idea what I was doing but it didn't take me long to get it figured out and to thoroughly enjoy it.  I had no idea of the many friends that I would make in the process and how many folks would actually say to me, "I so enjoy your blog."  That is like icing on the cake for me when others enjoy reading the posts I have written.  Heartfelt thanks to you, my readers, for your support, kind words, and for hanging in there with me these past 8 1/2 years.  Now, on to my 1000th post...........
Hubby and I went to Oklahoma last week to see our daughter and her family.  She and her oldest were on fall break so it was a good time to spend with them.

I often say that it's like going to a zoo when we go see them.  They live out in the country and they have horses, sheep, a cat and raise and breed Corgi's.  It's all hands on deck around their house when it comes to feeding all these critters.  I can only hope that these animals bring them a lot of enjoyment because they are a whole lot of work. And, it doesn't matter what the weather is, raining, hot or freezing cold, they have to be fed. ~not for me~ But, on the other hand, feeding time is also family time.  Most evenings Bridget and Coleman join Clint and Clancy in the process and Coleman likely has the most fun of all.  He chases after the dogs and sheep, plays on the tractor and just enjoys being outside. ~he's all boy for sure~

Poppa got Clancy's bicycle out and Coleman was ready to jump right on it.  Coleman doesn't back off from much of anything and I fully expect he'll be riding a bike (without training wheels) shortly. ~that could be an exaggeration~  He also gave Poppa a run for his money. ~chuckle~

Clancy works with the sheep several times a week in preparation for showing them next spring.  I have always heard that sheep are stubborn and now I know it firsthand.  Poor Clancy has to work hard to get the crazy things to do what he wants them to do but in the end, Clancy won the battle.  And, little brother follows him every step of the way trying to get his hands on the sheep as well.

One day Bridget and I were able to enjoy a mother/daughter day.  Those days seem to be few and far between, so this was extra special for sure.  We started our day at Inspirations  in Edmond, Oklahoma.  What a perfect start to our day.  It is just beautiful and the breakfast was out of this world.  

After we ate we enjoyed browsing the through the shop.  Everything beautifully displayed.  It was, as I stated, a most perfect start to a most fun day spent with my girl.

Again, thank you so much for being one of my readers.  You are a blessing to me and I pray that my blog is a blessing and enjoyment to all who stop by.  Hugs to all of you!

NOTE: Hubby and I will be off to beautiful Branson, Mo. this next week so I'll be out of pocket.  I'll have lots to share upon our return.  See you then!

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

What's Up Wednesday

I enjoy link-ups and have made so many new blogging friends by participating in them.  Today is the first time I've linked up with "What's Up Wednesday" but it won't be my last.  It is a monthly link up and that appeals to me as well.  Hope you enjoy!

What we're eating this week...........well, I cannot lie.  Truth be told, I do very little cooking these days.  I try to cook what I call a decent meal a couple of times a week and the other evenings we eat "gourmet sandwiches" with some chips, or we go out.  I'll cook more as the weather cools because we love stews, soups, chili and the such.

What I'm reminiscing about.....oh, I do a lot of this and right now I'm reminiscing about my precious Mom.  The 9th anniversary of her death will be December 1st.  Life has never been the same without her, but life goes on. There's no one as interested in the details of your life as your Mom.

What I'm loving.......the feel of fall in the air.  We've had fall like weather the past 3-4 days and it looks as though it is going to continue.  I love fall and the changing of the colors.

What we've been up to........Hubby and I returned from a few days in Oklahoma visiting our daughter and her family this past Sunday.  I've been busy getting caught up after being gone, preparing for company this weekend and going on another trip next Tuesday.  Yep, it's busy around here right now.

What I'm dreading........wrapping Christmas presents.  I use to absolutely LOVE wrapping gifts of any kind but not anymore.  I don't want to think it's my age, surely not!!!

What I'm working on..........I've started my Christmas shopping and have made a decent dent in it.  I have what I've bought ready to wrap but haven't gotten to the wrapping part just yet.(see above) And, I've done a rough draft of our Christmas card.  Every year I think I won't send them, but somehow I keep sending them. ~go figure~

What I'm excited about.......As I mentioned above, Hubby and I are going on another trip next week.  We are meeting dear friends in Branson, Missouri and we'll be staying at one of my most favorite places, The Keeter Center.  The colors will likely be beautiful, cooler temps and we'll be seeing some Christmas shows.  Yes, I am excited about this! 

What I'm watching/reading..........I'm enjoying The Voice, This is Us, The Menendez Murders (everything about this show is sad) and of course, Shark Tank!  About the only thing I'm reading just now is my Bible study book, Finding I Am and of course, blogs. ~smile~

What I'm listening to.........funny you asked.  My daughter just introduced me to K-Love radio and I've fallen in love.  I play it through my IPhone and through bluetooth in my car.  Wow, just such great inspiring christian music and the DJ's are awesome.  Yes, I'm in love!!!

What I'm wearing.........well, I'm finally in long sleeves, vests, cardigans, jeans or long pants and of course, booties.  Love dressing this time of year!

What I'm doing this weekend......We will be seeing both of Tommy's sisters and it's been a long time since they have both been here at the same time.  One is passing through headed somewhere else and will stay here for a couple of nights.  The other one will be in the area to attend her husband's 50th class reunion.  It will be a quick visit, but a special time.

What I'm looking forward to next month....after having time to think following my retina tears and laser surgery this past July, I have decided to get a second opinion.  I'll be seeing one of the many retina specialists at Hamilton Eye Institute in Memphis, TN in mid-Nov.  There are just some concerns that I have and I pray they are unfounded but I just need to hear from another specialist that "all is well."  It's so inconvenient to travel 4 hours to see a Dr. but when it comes to eyesight, inconvenience is not considered.

What else is new.........this isn't new but just a sweet something.........As most of you know my Daddy lives in an assisted living facility about 4 miles from me.  He will be 88 on Nov. 9th and is a retired minister.  I generally see him at least 4-5 times a week and most of the time our visits are very special.  He is a great conversationalist and so full of wisdom.  If, in our conversation, he senses that I may be a little down, discouraged, or have a concern, he will have prayer with me before I leave.  He's done this so many times but it still brings me to tears and at the same time, floods my heart with peace.  It's as though the gates of heaven open right up when my Daddy prays.  And, it doesn't hurt that he has one of the best voices in the world!  I hate to even think of my earthly life without his prayers. ~sigh~