Monday, March 30, 2015

HELLO Monday..........

My friends, can you see the smile on my face?  Well, we have had some beautiful spring days the past week and it has made me happy, happy.  But, it appears that we will be enduring more rain the next 3 days but hopefully not a deluge.  Did I mention that we "need" a driveway? ~chuckle~Meanwhile, here's some HELLO's for this Monday morning.

HELLO birthday boys and fun times........My baby brother was in town this past week and he celebrated his 50th birthday on St. Patrick's Day, so, even though it was a week later, I threw a little celebration for him. We donned the dorky hats for a little fun!
It was such a beautiful evening that we all went outside and enjoyed it.  We've been cooped up inside way too long and it was fun and refreshing to be outside.
On Friday Hubby celebrated his birthday.  We went to a new restaurant that has gotten rave reviews and we were NOT disappointed.  Tommy's steak looked like a pot roast and he did end up bringing some of it home.  Their food, service and atmosphere would get a 5 star rating from us.
HELLO house progress.......our shutters have been painted and are ready to hang and that will likely happen this week.  I sure do like the color and can't wait to see them up.
This is our painting contractor and he and his crew have been busy bees painting and staining.  If you look closely you can see the ceiling color, it is Softer Tan by Sherwin Williams.  All our ceilings will be that color.  So glad that white ceilings are a thing of my past.
The buffet top turned out just beautiful.
And, I absolutely love how the stained section of the kitchen turned out.  Now, can't wait to see the painted section, thinking it will be "the icing on the cake."
The tile work went full steam ahead this week.  The Master shower and all the other baths shower surrounds were done.  I couldn't be happier with the looks.
They started the tile flooring (in baths, and a small section coming in the garage door) on Friday and will finish in just a few days.
Then they will be gone for a few weeks until it is time to lay the wood flooring.

Friday, March 27, 2015

About Me - Part 2

I know you have been waiting with "baited breath" for the second half of this post. I started it last Friday and it went on a little longer than I had expected so I decided to divide it into two parts.  Off for Part 2 of All About Me.....
I keep my camera attached to my hip.  I never want to miss a moment that might need photographing.  I'm certainly not a pro by a long shot but love taking pictures and then playing with them over in PicMonkey.
I have been an early riser all of my adult life.  I am up by 5:30AM M-F and find that I am my most productive in the mornings.  I have no where I usually have to be but I still love getting up and getting started. ~early bird gets the worm~
I consider myself a qualified caregiver.  When I was around 37 years old I began overseeing the care of my paternal Grandparents.  They had lived in Arkansas all of their lives and the time came that they needed to be moved into a nursing facility.  My Dad, their only child, lived in Virginia and they did not want to move that far so they agreed to come here to Louisiana where I live.  Little did we know that they would live a long, long time and I would be busy, busy overseeing their care.  They were 80 and 82 when they moved here.  My Grandfather lived 7 years and we just knew that my Grandmother would die within months as well.  But, she lived an additional 7 years and died at the age of 94.  She could be a force to be reckoned with and there were times that I did not know if I would be able to survive.  They were just the beginning of my degree in care giving.
My sweet MIL was stricken with Alzheimers over a period of about two years.  She was able to stay in an assisted living facility until she needed a nursing facility.  Hubby and I were the main overseers of her care as both of her daughters lived a long ways away.  They came regularly and took as active a part as they possibly could but one can only do so much when a lot of miles are involved.  I always made sure that she was receiving the best care possible at the nursing home and that meant running intervention a lot and serving as her advocate.  Word to the wise: never, ever put your loved one in a nursing facility without staying on top of their care!!!!!  She passed away on January 1, 2008.
In June of 2011 my Daddy was stricken with Guillan Barre Syndrome and his life (and mine) was forever changed.  He was 81 years old and looked and acted like he was many years younger.  I spent most of the next 3 months by his side in the hospital  while we did not know if he would live or die. I could absolutely write a book on the ups and downs of the 3 years that followed.  I certainly never dreamed he would have made the recovery he has made.  He lives happily at the assisted living facility here.  He will never be what he once was, but then who is? ~wink~  He is the answer to a whole lot of prayers.
My Mom had a massive stroke on Nov. 30, 2008 and died two days later on Dec. 1st.  It took me almost 5 years to come to terms with her death.  It was so hard for me to wrap my head around her death as it was so unexpected.
I am very traditional in my home and its decor. I'm not one to step very far out of my box.
I'm also very traditional in my dress and love to match from my head to my toes.  And, I love to accessorize and like all things ultra feminine.
I love Sonic's unsweet tea with cranberry flavoring and their popcorn chicken.  Yummy!!!
I love bacon and think everything is better with it. And, I love potato chips and thankfully I have a lot of self control or I could eat a whole bag at a time.  I have salt cravings more than sugar.
I love to be organized and like for things to be organized. For me, it makes for a very productive life.
I am very punctual and appreciate punctuality in others.
I love to laugh and have a very loud laugh.  I can control it if I have too but I prefer to just let it flow at full volume. You know they say laughter is the best medicine. ~I believe that~
It is a rarity for me to ever turn the TV on during the day. I love music and if anything is on during the day it will generally be contempory Christian music. ~lifts my spirits~
I love to be busy but not too busy.  I like my "down time" as much as my busy time and I try to balance the two as much as possible and it makes for a happy gal!
I LOVE internet shopping and much admit that I am addicted to Amazon Prime.  Yes, even order my K-cups from there and I live less than 2 miles from the grocery store.  It is just so, so convenient and quick.  And, most every internet business makes returns simple, simple.  It's a win win as far as I'm concerned.
Well, I imagine you now know more about me than you ever cared to know but, hey, you didn't have to read this. ~I'm teasing~ I've had fun with these posts and hopefully you have had fun reading them and learning a bit more about this Southern gal.

And, I leave you with this thought........

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Wednesday Hodgepodge

Not sure how Joyce worked the HP into her very busy schedule this past week but she's apparently Super Woman. And, I'm sure she knows our disappointment if she didn't show up for us.  Hats off to you Joyce for your untiring efforts each and every week!
1. This coming weekend is Palm Sunday, which marks the beginning of Holy Week. Do you celebrate Easter in your home? What was your favorite Easter tradition as a child?

We do celebrate but this year and the past few have not been on Easter Sunday but the day before.  We will have a family dinner with our son, DIL, the Princess and the Sweetheart. I will give them some Easter "happies" and we will probably hunt a few eggs. Our Texas family will not be able to be with us. ~oh, the joys of long distance family~

2. George Weinberg is quoted as saying, 'Hope never abandons you, you abandon it.' Agree or disagree? Share your own thoughts on the word hope.

I agree. Hope is the expectation or desire for something and without it life would not have near as much meaning.  Of course, as a Christian, our eternal hope is Jesus Christ  and one could certainly  say that He never abandons us but we abandon Him.

3. Weigh in with a yay or nay on the traditional Easter candies. A solid milk chocolate bunny? Cadbury Creme Eggs? Peeps? Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs? Jellybeans? Coconut Cream Eggs? Of the candies listed, which one would you most like to find in your Easter basket?

I would enjoy a small bite of a milk chocolate bunny, no to everything else except Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs.  I do love the mixture of peanut butter and chocolate.

4. When did you last feel 'like a kid in a candy store'?

I have felt that way several times during our house construction.  The choices can be overwhelming for sure but I have had such fun.  I don't have difficulty making decisions and with the trusty guidance of my designer, I have often felt like a kid in a candy store for sure.  Last week we were in a carpet store looking at some carpet to have cut and bound to use as an area rug.  I haven't looked at carpet in years and years and had no idea all the textures and designs available.  It was such fun!

5. What's something you know you do differently than most people? Does that bother you? Does it bother other people?

Interesting question..........I'm quite sure I do a lot of things differently than most but the one thing that first entered my mind is how I fix hamburger meat.  If I need hamburger meat in a dish, such as lasagna, spaghetti or chili, I boil the meat, I do not fry it.  My Mom always did this and so I have too.  It is so much cleaner and so much healthier.  I add a bag of seasoning blend and it takes just a few minutes for the meat to brown and be ready for whatever dish I need it for.  It doesn't bother me a bit and I've even had friends start doing it after they found out I did it that way.  I have had some folks sort of turn their nose up at the idea and that doesn't bother me either.  ~to each his own~

  6. Palm Springs CA, Palm Beach FL, or the PALMetto State...of the three mentioned, which sunny spot would you most like to visit right now? Which have you visited at one time or another?
I think I could use a dose of Palm Beach right now.  I've been to all 3 states but never to Palm Springs or Palm Beach.

7. If you could change the length of a day would you lengthen it or shorten it? Tell us why.

Hummm.........I can think of a few days that I would love to have shortened for sure and some I would like to have lengthened.  But, in general, I think days are just about the right length and I can usually get everything done in the hours allotted and then enjoy some "down time."  And, if I don't get it all done it's likely I got all I "needed" to get done. ~big smile~

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

This was taken last night at the family dinner I had for my baby brother's 50th birthday.  Is that not the sweetest......Great Poppa bonding with Andi Kate.

Monday, March 23, 2015

HELLO Monday.............

It's the 4th day of Spring and we have just endured a very wet weekend and I say endure because that's exactly what I'm having to do right now, just endure it.  We are so over WET that I could scream.  But, other than Wed. it looks like the sun may come out and make us very happy this coming week.  But, for now, I'll go forward with some HELLO's.........

Hello precious memories.....I continue with my preparation to move and this past Saturday I pulled out the containers that held some of our children's special clothes.  I, by no means, kept all their clothes, but I did keep those that I thought were extra special until they were about 6 years old.  They all fit into one Rubbermaid container and I had to stop and look at a few of them. 

 Of course, it brought back so many, many sweet memories of them  and it made it even more difficult to believe that they are now 35 and 38.
 ~where have the years gone~

And, when I found this, I really had a "moment."  Brandon only played baseball about 4 years but they were some fun times.  He gave up baseball when he fell in love with golf.  And, we thought that was a great decision.  He and his Dad have enjoyed a lot of fun times on the golf course and it is a sport that he  will be able to enjoy all of his life.
Hello house progress....... For the past 2-3 weeks it has been busy, busy at the house.  The prep work began by the tile folks for the Master shower and the shower surrounds in the other baths.  The prep work is very nasty and has made me wonder how anything attractive can come from it.  But, I'm pretty sure it will all come together and be exactly what I was hoping.
The painters continue with their prep work but they did actually paint Hubby's shop this past week.  It is white and looks like a surgical suite. ~smile~ He should have no trouble seeing in there for sure.
This is one corner of my pantry and those corner shelves will hold Lazy Susans.  We saw this just a couple of weeks ago on the internet and asked our cabinet designer if he thought this could be incorporated into our pantry and he assured us it could.  The Lazy Susans will be installed once the pantry is painted.  It will be a super place for canned goods and nothing can get hidden from me.  I have never had a pantry so you can only imagine how excited I am about this.
This is the cabinet coming in from the garage.  When it was first built it looked like the picture on the left and I felt like it looked like something was missing so I asked our cabinet man to redo it and make it wider.  He was happy to oblige and agreed that it did look better once he redid it.  He made it narrow because he felt like the corner was going to get in our way as we came through to go to one of the storage rooms.  But, he rounded the corner and that should help.
We had him make some changes on this wall of cabinets as well.  Hubby felt like that each end of the cabinet should be raised to give a nicer look and to allow space to put items that I might be getting out of the cabinets.  I am so pleased and have to give all the credit to Tommy for seeing the need for this.   It will also serve as an area to have some decorative items as well.
 These are the cabinets we had put in the guest suite.  For us not to have planned on making this area (above garage) anything it has worked out perfectly to make into a guest suite.

The kitchen cabinets are finished except for the corbels under the mantel above the cook top. And, of course, knobs and pulls.  As you can see part of the cabinets are going to be painted and part are mahogany that will be stained.  Our designer suggested this as Hubby wanted to have stained cabinets and I wanted painted.  So, this way we are both happy.  The small island will also be painted while the big island is mahogany.  I'm not sure I have actually seen a kitchen with this combination but I'm sure excited about it.

Things are moving right along and everything from this point on is pretty exciting.  And, as I've said 4 other times, we are in desperate need of a driveway and if Mother Nature would hear our plea and give us lots and lots of sun for about 2 weeks then we might be able to get that taken care of.  

In the meantime I leave you with this......

Friday, March 20, 2015

About Me - Part 1

I have enjoyed getting to know so many of my blogging buddies.  And, one of those ways has been when they did a post that was all about them.  A little history, their likes, their dislikes, their hobbies, their families and such.  So, today I thought it would be fun to let you, my readers, get to know me a little better.  My thoughts may get a little random and I may jump ahead and then jump back, but here I go.....
About 3 months old
 I was born on July 29, 1952 in Newport News, Virginia.  My Dad had served in the Navy and then went to work at the ship yard  in Newport News.  He met my Mom there and they were married on June 8, 1950.

I have two brothers younger than myself.  One lives in Culpeper, Virginia  and the other in Des Moines, Iowa.

When I was 8 years old our family was living in Ft. Smith, Arkansas (my Dad's hometown)  and my Dad surrendered to the full time ministry. I really had no idea what that meant but it did sound very exciting to me.

I accepted Christ as my Savior when I was 8 years old and since our church did not have a baptistry, I was baptized at another local church by my Dad. He would often hold baptisms at the local river but for some reason, I wasn't.

My Dad pastored several churches during my school years and I attended 8 different schools as a result.  I changed schools 2nd semester of my Junior year and my class ring was not even from the high school I graduated from.

I was very adaptable with every move.  I jumped right in, made new friends and always thought it was a fun adventure being a PK. (preacher's kid) 

My full name is Lea Beth and I went by that until my Junior year of high school and, not sure why, but everyone began calling me Lea (pronounced Leah) and I've been Lea ever since.

I met my husband when my Dad was his pastor, here where we now live, back in 1965.  He was 18 and I wasn't quite 13.  But, I fell madly in love with him and told my parents at that time that one day I was going to marry him.

Hubby loves to tell folks that he waited for me to grow up and then he came to Virginia and asked for my hand in marriage and the rest is history.~a whole lotta history~

I wasn't quite 19 and Hubby was 24 when we married in Lynchburg, Virginia.  Just days later I packed all my earthly possessions and moved 1000 miles away from my family. And, that was wayyyyyy before cell phones and email and Hubby did not even have a job.  Now, he had his MBA degree but no job.  Can I just say that I cried myself to sleep many a night due to homesickness.  Thankfully, Tommy was mature and really nurtured me through that time.  

We were married 5 1/2 years when the Lord blessed us with a son and then 3 years later, a daughter.  

I fully regret that I did not finish college and have often thought that I would go back but have just never put my nose to the grind to do so.  And, guess I figure what's the use now. But, it's been something that I've thought an awful lot about through the years.

My oldest brother and I sang together as a  duet when we were teenagers.  He played the 12 string guitar and we sang for our own enjoyment, for church and various functions.  It is a very fond memory for me.  We were sort of "folksy" sounding.

For most of my time at home times were tough financially but I'm not sure that I really realized it.  I always had food to eat, clothes to wear and knew and accepted that I could not have everything I wanted.  We did not own a TV until I was 8 years old but I would spend hours sitting in front of the radio listening to Uncle Remas tell stories. 
~talk about a long time ago~ 
I loved the Lawrence Welk Show and before we got a TV, my parents would take me to my paternal Grandparents house every Saturday night so that I could watch it.  I wanted to be a Lennon Sister when I grew up. ~so funny~

Six years old

Well, this is getting a bit long and I sure don't want it to get boring and lose your interest, so I'll continue next Friday.  It's always best to leave folks "wanting more" not wishing you would hush. ~smile~  

Happy first day of Spring!!!  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

The Wednesday Hodgepodge

I'm not sure where or how Joyce comes up with questions for us each week but I do appreciate it as it helps me to have a sure post on Wednesday without my having to come up with a topic.  Hopefully she'll keep them coming for a long time.

1. Share a favorite song, book, or movie title containing the word green?
The Green Green Grass of Home, a hit from 1965.

2. Ralph Waldo Emerson is quoted as saying, 'Shallow men believe in luck. Strong men believe in cause and effect.' Would you agree? Are you a believer in luck?

My brain was struggling with the first part of that question so I'm going to pass on it and I do believe in luck up to a point. ~I'll leave it at that~ 

3. Spring water, Hot Springs, handspring, spring fling, spring break, spring fever, offspring...which 'spring' word best applies to something in your day, week, or life right now?

Oh, no doubt about it, I have a bad case of spring fever!  I am yearning for spring in a BIG way and it is peeking at us through the daffodils,and the grass is greening up, so I think we are well on our way.  Now, if the rain would just go away for a few weeks I'd really be a happy gal!

4. What's something you do to make yourself look or feel more confident?

Well, I've never thought about it making me feel more confident, but I'm quite sure that because I get up everyday and put my makeup on and accessorize (no matter what I have on) that it does make me feel more confident.  I am just not one to be sloppy or unkempt. I enjoy looking the best I can no matter what I may be doing, digging in the dirt, cleaning, or a night out on the town.
~just funny that way~ 

5.  It's National Celery Month...are you a fan? If so, what's a snack or dish you enjoy that calls for celery?

I'm not a big fan of celery and certainly not by itself.  But, it's fine in chicken salad, potato salad and the such.  But, to me, it's just not a necessary ingredient. ~big chuckle~

6. What's one thing you wish you'd learned sooner?
Oh, wow, there's a whole bunch that I wish I had learned sooner. And, I sort of hate to say this but I wish that I had learned to really believe that HE is able, nothing is beyond HIS reach and HE does have it all under control.  I have known this all my Christian life but until circumstances presented themselves for me to be put to the test, I had not really "learned" these truths. 
 ~hope that made sense~

7. Would you like to own a second home? If so where would you want that home to be?

No, I have never wanted to own a second home.  Owning one home is plenty!  I cannot imagine having upkeep and maintenance  on another.  Hubby and I did lease a condo in Oklahoma when our daughter and SIL lived there and we thoroughly enjoyed that.  All we did was enjoy living there without any responsibility.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.

I have been debating going shorter with my hair for a couple of months.  I had it cut some two weeks ago ~I like easing into things~ and went yesterday to have some more cut.  I looked online at scads of short "dos" and found a site that showed both back, front and side imagines. That is where I found the style I chose to go with. I get a wild hair every now and then to let my hair grow out and I ALWAYS regret it.  It just seems to drag me down and causes me to loose my perky look.  I'm happy as can be with my new look and feel like I have my sass back. ~grin~

Monday, March 16, 2015

HELLO Monday

Looking like we may have some sunshine today and it will be the best dose of medicine.  It's another Monday and time for some HELLO's......
 HELLO cake making....The day Clancy arrived last week I decided that we needed a cake.  I started getting things out and Clancy heard me and he came running in the kitchen, telling me he wanted to help.  Well, how do you say no?  You don't, you let him get a stool and enjoy making memories.  He kept asking me if he could lick the bowl and the mixers.  Well, I KNOW that "they" say that is a "no no" because of the raw eggs.  But, I licked them all my life, my kids licked them all their lives and we all lived to tell about it.  So, I did let him and he had more fun and enjoyed every lick. 
HELLO no show......We were to have a big Garden Club monthly meeting last week.  We have had it on the books since last summer.  We had invited two other clubs to join us to hear a speaker from Jackson, MS.  Well, the day before, the speaker got sick and could not come.  Efforts were made to secure another speaker but that wasn't possible.  We had already made a whole of plans and didn't feel like we could just cancel it.  A whole lot of yummy food had been prepared so we went right on with the scheduled time and had a great social gathering rather than a meeting.  You know when women get together they can have such a good time just eating and visiting and that exactly what we did.  It was a rainy, dreary day but it looked like Spring inside where we were with all the lovely spring accents everywhere.  

 HELLO online consignment....a couple of weeks ago one of my blogging buddies  told me about an online consignment place she used.  I had never even thought about consigning being a possibility online.  Well, once I checked into it, I found several places.  I found a couple that seemed to fit me and I decided to give them a try. One was LikeTwice.  I ordered the free selling kit that includes a huge clean out bag with postage paid.  As I prepared my clothing items to ship I wrapped them in a Saran wrap type of material to keep them neat during shipment.  They did not request this at all but I just decided that I wanted to keep them neatly folded as they were shipped.  ~I hope they will appreciate my efforts~

The other company I tried was  ThredUp.  They mailed me their clean out bags and I filled 3 of them up and sent them back, all with pre-paid postage by ThredUp.  I also wrapped them in the Saran Wrap type material for shipment.  Each place has very specific rules and they do not accept all brands of clothing, shoes or accessories.  You have to check to make sure what brands they do accept.  Thred Up settles up with you as soon as they receive your items.  They either give credit for you to spend at their site, a Target gift card in the amount you earned or deposit it in your Paypal account.  The amount you get per items varies, it is not a certain percentage.  I'm going to give it a try, it was so easy and then I'll decide if I want to do it again.  They will even mail back to you any items that do not sell or they will donate them.  I opted to have mine donated. I also have used a local consignment shop here in our town for years and years and love it as well.  I just thought this would be neat to try and it didn't cost me a penny to mail them my items, so I'll see how I like it.

HELLO new house progress.....there is so much going on right now that it's hard to keep up with all of it.  The painters started last week but there's nothing to really show as they are strictly doing all their prep work right now, priming and puttying.  I imagine it will be at least two more weeks before the actual paint begins going up.
 The cabinetry continues........the face was put on the kitchen island this week and once it is stained, it is going to be beautiful.
The cook top hood was installed this week, just needs the front panel put on and the corbels added.   I love the mantel!
 The laundry room doors and drawers were installed, now just awaiting the sink to go in and of course, eventually a washer and dryer.
I love the way this little corner cabinet finished out in one of the guest bedrooms.  And, it was not even planned, just happened to be a triangular space there and my decorator suggested we use the space for a corner cabinet. ~great idea~  
And, can I tell you how excited I am about these pull outs in all my cabinets.  There will be no more items lost in the back of my cabinets. Yea!!!!
This is the beginning stages of the tile work in our master shower.  The tile folks will be hard at work for the next couple of weeks with this shower and then shower surrounds and back splashes in the other baths.  
Slowly but surely it is all coming together.  Now if we can just have dry weather for a long enough time to dry out the ground. It can then be prepared and forms laid for the driveway.