Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Wednesday Hodgepodge

 This is my 2nd HP entry this week.  I was almost finished with my 1st one and I must have accidently hit some key that deleted the entire post.  Grrrrrr........I was not happy at all.  I have had that issue several times since I got this HP Pavillion laptop.  I cannot stand it and will never buy another one.  The keyboard is overly sensitive and drives me bonkers.  Now on to the Hodgepodge.

1. It's officially summer (in the northern hemisphere anyway). Which summer month is best and why?
 I will go with my birthday month, July. In fact, one month from today is my special day.   My Mom told me that in her last days of pregnancy with me that she would get so hot that she would go and stick her head in the freezer of their refrigerator to cool off. ~bless her heart~

2. Can you swim? How did you learn? June 27th is National Sunglasses Day. How many pair do you own?
There was a time in my life that I could swim but I would certainly hate to have to swim today.  I took lessons as a child but it's been at least 35 years since I last swam.  I own two pair of prescription sunglasses, a bronze/brown pair and a dark grey pair.

3. What characteristic do you judge most harshly in yourself? How about in others?
I thrive on neatness and orderliness and it  can be my worse enemy or my best friend.  I would have to say that it has been my best friend for the most part.

I get aggravated when folks think their time is more valuable than any other persons.  And, when they are late or make others wait then they are in essence saying they value no one's time but their own. 
~not good~ And, there are always exceptions but I'm talking about habitual.

4. Robert Frost wrote the now well known poem entitled The Road Not Taken. What's a road (literal or figurative) you've always wanted to travel, and where do you hope it takes you? 
I am drawing a blank on this one.............sorry!

5. Popsicles-yay or nay? If you answered yay, what's your favorite flavor? 

I am not a big fan of popsicles, unless I am not feeling well.  In that case I'll take a cherry flavor.  I can't remember the last time I even had one.

6. Brexit-on a scale of 1-10 how knowledgeable are you on what's involved here? (1=very knowledgeable and 10=what's Brexit) Is this news you'll follow or is it something you think won't impact your life in any way shape or form?
 I'm at about an 8 and I will not be following it.  I wouldn't go so far as  to say that it will not impact my life but there's so much in the news right now that is or will impact my life negatively that it gets me in a funk if I let it.  My brother told me yesterday that he had gone on a news fast and I'm thinking that might be a  good idea. 
7. Share a favorite song on your summer play list.

Good Good Father by Chris Tomlin and indeed He is a good, good Father!

8. Insert your own random thought here.
Recently I went to my Orthopedic Dr.  When I signed in the receptionist handed me a clip board with about 4 sheets of paper and asked me to fill them out.  Well, I have been to this Dr. many times and nothing, except my address, had changed since my last visit.  No new medications, no new health issues, same as their current info.  I told her this and she said, "well, we're required to get this."  I just took it, sat down and began the process of answering the 1000 questions.  When I got home I was telling Hubby about it and he said I should have asked her who was requiring it. And, if they say, the Doctor, then I may well just tell them that I will let him know that nothing has changed and see what her response is.   I don't want to be an "old goat" but the medical forms we have to fill out these days are enough to make one crazy and when it isn't necessary and they make you do it anyway, it makes one double crazy.  And, I have to fill them out not only for myself but also for my Dad. I totally get it when seeing a new Dr. and I totally see them asking if there have been any changes since your last visit, but to start over from the beginning, well, I don't get that.
 Okay, rant over!

Happy mid-week! 

Monday, June 27, 2016

Monday's Musings

Do I even need to say that it is the LAST Monday in June?  Probably not, time is just whizzing by and we all need to be making every day count.  2016 is half over. Wow, that's all I can say.  Now on to the subject at hand..............
The landscaping continues, I know, it seems like it has been a forever project and it has.  But, I do believe that this week may wrap it up for the most part. ~Hope! Hope~  This is week 7 and that is plenty long enough as far as I'm concerned.
We are using a fountain in the front of and middle of the garage.  That seemed to be the perfect spot for one, so Hubby and I went "on the hunt" for one this past week.  We have a place about 25 miles from here that has any and everything you could possibly desire when it comes to yard accents.  We went early in the day but still almost had a heat stroke as we browsed all the choices.

We finally decided on the one above and we couldn't be more pleased.  But, can I tell you that the guys that delivered it and set it up probably felt like they had wrestled a bull by the time they finished.  Not really, they do this day in and day out but it is NOT easy and our fountain weighs about 800 pounds.  It is in 5 pieces and they were so meticulous about getting it level and done perfectly.  We gave them 5 stars for sure!  The base will be surrounded in a circular pattern of Colorado rock (that will cover the concrete platform) and that will give the base a finished look.  Yes, I'll show some more pictures when that is done. ~smile~

Now for a sneak peek at the rest of the landscape...........
 We had stone and rock pathways done to all the outside faucets.  That way should I need to use one of the faucets, I won't have to worry about wet ground or some yard critter hiding in the grass. ~giggle~
 All the beds that come up to concrete are edged in Colorado rock.  That pretty much guarantees the concrete will stay clean.
This is one of the back beds filled with red Knock Out Roses.  In a short time those bushes will be touching each other and it will truly make a big RED statement.
This is another back bed and the Camellia's will soon camouflage the fence around Hubby's outside stuff and the garbage bins.    And, the Crepe Myrtle  will provide us a small amount of shade that we desperately need.
 This is the right side of the house and the fountain is in this general area.

We are more than pleased and so enjoy looking out and seeing the outside come together.  I will share the finished landscape when it is finally done.

And, I leave you with this sweet picture...........
The girlies stayed the night with us one night last week and enjoyed an early morning swing with Poppa. This is the stuff that memories are made of for sure.

Blessings to you for a wonderful last week of June!

Friday, June 24, 2016

Our Master Bedroom Tour

Today I'm linking up with Kelly over at Kelly's Korner for her home tour.  She features a different room each Friday and today's feature is the Master Bedroom.  It's always fun to see how different folks decorate their houses, so I thought I participate in today's feature.  

 The windows in our Master Bedroom look out on our patio and the pond and they provide an abundance of light for us.  We needed coverings for the afternoon sun and for night, so I chose a pleated fabric shade that is easy up and down.  Just push it up with your hand and pull it down.  There are no cords or rollers.  Very neat!

 But, in the mornings and early afternoons the view from our bedroom is very pretty and will be even more so once the landscaping is completed. 

We have had this bedroom suite for almost 20 years and I still love it.  It is pecan and the bed is a sleigh bed.  The chest at the foot of the bed is the chest my Dad made for me when I graduated from high school.  Yep! it's as "old as dirt." ~grin~  It is made of solid walnut but it is almost a perfect match to our bedroom suite.  It is a very special piece to me and I'm so glad we were able to use it in our bedroom. And, I love the 3 different fabrics in this room. My decorator did such a great job in assisting me with all these choices.

Our night stands are rather large and I'm so glad.  I seem to keep mine pretty full with books, lotions, Ipad and such.  We did get these new lamps when we moved into this house and they are quite large but with the high ceilings, they needed to be. I notice that some folks night stands look like show cases but that is not the case with ours. ~chuckle~
This table graces one of the corners next to the windows.  It's just a decor piece and I love it.  I think it adds such a lovely touch to our room.

This is the bottom to the dresser that goes with our bedroom suite.  We removed the mirrors when we moved and it then made the perfect chest to go underneath our TV.  I know folks that do not have TV's in their bedrooms and know folks that would not dare have one hung on their wall.  But, we love a TV in our bedroom and I'm fine with it being hung on the wall.  ~not a problem for me~  And, you might notice the headphones sitting on the chest.  Those are wireless headphones for Hubby.  He can put those on and have the TV just as loud as he wants it and I will not hear a thing.  So, if he's involved in something on TV and I'm ready to go to sleep, it's a beautiful thing. ~wink~ 

This is a very large armoire that can hold a lot of folded clothes and is a very pretty piece as well.  In our old house it held our bedroom TV but we put the shelves back in it when we moved and now it holds my folded clothes and such.  It looks much prettier in this house than our old house because of the high ceilings.  It is a tall piece and the ceilings in our old house were only 8 feet.

 We enjoy having this recliner in our bedroom.  Hubby uses it to sit in when he's putting on his shoes and I will occasionally kick back in it and read.  It's a cozy corner that we enjoy.

Well, there you have it, our master bedroom retreat. Now, wishing you a wonderful weekend!

Monday, June 20, 2016

Monday's Musings

 Happy new week!

I hope each of you had a nice Father's Day weekend.  We celebrated over grilled burgers and all the trimmings yesterday afternoon.  We topped it off with Blueberry Pound Cake. And, we celebrated these 3 Dads, my Hubby, my Daddy and our son.  Sure wish we could have celebrated our SIL as well, but a few miles exist between us and at times like these, it really stinks.  But, it is what it is and we make the best of it.

And, the landscape is moving right along.  They actually started putting some of the plants in last week.  I cannot even imagine working as hard as these guys in this intense heat and humidity.  My goodness!  But, they are doing an amazing job and it gets prettier every day.  There is still more planting to be done, and stone and rock work and they should come close to finishing up this week.  I will show you some "up close and personal" pictures when it is completed.  Thanks for following along. ~smile~
I put some patriotic touches out on the front porch last week.  In spite of the troubling days we are living in here in the US, it's still the grandest country in the world.  And, I like to show my love of my country whenever possible.

And, I leave you with a chuckle............The above picture is of our spa tub in our master bath.  In the 10 months we have lived here we have used it 3 times so I haven't even thought about running the cleaning cycle on it.  I have cleaned the surface but nothing more.  Well, Saturday morning I got the manual out and decided that, even though it is seldom used, that it probably would be wise to run a cleaning cycle through it.  The manual said to add 1/2 cup of bleach and 2 teaspoons of low suds dish washing detergent.  Well, I didn't know if my dish washing detergent was low suds or not but as you can see, I found out it wasn't.  I set a timer for the 15 minutes that it was to run and left it.  I happen to go back into the bathroom for something and I saw what was happening and didn't know whether to laugh or cry.  It had about 5 minutes left of the cycle and I just decided to let it continue and hope that the suds were through growing.  But, let me tell you, I had a good time rinsing those suds out of the tub when the cycle was over.  Lesson learned!!  I will make sure I use low suds dish washing detergent next time.

Have yourself a wonderful new week!

Friday, June 17, 2016

A Bit of This and That

It's one of those days, a whole lotta stuff running through this brain of mind, thus the reason of this title.  
Hubby and I had the privilege of attending our son's deacon ordination service this past Sunday evening.  There are few things that touch my heart more than seeing my children serve the Lord. Brandon has been a member of this church for about 12 years.  It is a growing church with an awesome pastor and staff and it thrills my soul that he and his family are a part of such a church. When Hubby and I attend church with them we would be considered the "elderly" folks.  No joke, I have never seen so many young families in my life.  What a blessing!
I have been working in Vacation Bible School this week at our church.  I tag teamed with a friend and we have taken turns teaching the Bible lesson.  It is from 5:30 - 8:30 PM .  I probably have not worked in VBS in about 4 years (maybe longer) and while it was a different format then, it is t-totally different now.  And, I wish that I could say that I love the new "way" but I cannot say that. ~not that anyone asked me~  Whatever happened to the days of a calm and orderly beginning and ending ceremonies?  Whatever happened to staying in one classroom and being with the same teachers the entire session? This enabled teachers and class to build relationships.  Well, apparently that is no longer the way it is done.  I'm sorry, I'm just not a fan of organized chaos.  Now, I'm sure that says something about my age but, I'm not a fan of organized chaos outside the church but certainly not inside the church.  I'm afraid that so much of our churches programs today have become more like a "dog and pony show" and I struggle with that big time!  Why do we have to constantly entertain?  I'm sure it is the "new way" to attract folks to church and for them to ultimately come to know the Lord.  Surely that is the premise behind all of it.  For me, things have gone too far out in left field.  Truth be known, I'll die a fan of traditional worship. Yep! that's right and I'm sure that sounds as old fashioned as can be.  I still enjoy dressing in my best on Sundays, and singing the hymns.  My church has a traditional/contemporary blend worship style and I've adjusted to it and it's okay.  We sing some hymns, choruses and contemporary songs and we have two big screens in our ultra traditional sanctuary.  And, I might add, I am not attached to traditional buildings and really find the new design of churches very inviting and comfortable. I do think that a sanctuary such as ours can often appear stuffy and a bit prim and proper.  But, it is one of the most gorgeous church buildings and sanctuaries around.  Okay, I think I've started rambling so I will stop here. I could really go on for days on this subject, wouldn't change a thing.

Our little happy guy was diagnosed with FPIES last week.  You ask, what is FPIES? It is Food Protein-Induced Enterocolitis Syndrome. It is a rare food allergy that affects the gastrointestinal tract. Let me just say that it makes our little Coleman deathly ill when it occurs.  His Momma had already diagnosed him through the internet but the Dr. confirmed that her diagnosis was correct.  Most children outgrow it by the age of 3 but it can last longer.  Foods that trigger it are generally cereal grains, soy and dairy products, and chicken, turkey and fish.  Yes, a whole lot of very common foods.  But, the Dr. took a lot of time explaining it to Bridget and they will do their best to prevent him having these reactions by very closely monitoring his food.  Our prayers are that he will outgrow it sooner than later and that he will continue to thrive in spite of it.  
 It is hotter than hot here in NE Louisiana so we are going to do our best to stay cool this Father's Day weekend.  We'll be celebrating here on Sunday late afternoon.  We'll be celebrating my Dad, my husband and our son.  Hope it's a delightful weekend for you!

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Wednesday's Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday, the 15th, so that means that June is exactly half over.  And, then in 15 more days the year will be exactly half over.  Hard to believe!  Meanwhile, back with the HP.........
1. If you could sit beside and/or jump in any lake in the whole wide world today, which lake would you choose and why?
I would sit beside Smith Mountain Lake near Lynchburg, VA.  Hubby and I honeymooned on that lake and I went there a lot while I was in high school.  My days of jumping in a lake are long over. ~chuckle~

2. What's your favorite 'fruity' drink?
I'm not much into fruity drinks but I do use Strawberry/Watermelon flavoring in my water and love it.  I drink a lot of water and sometimes I have to add just a little zip to it and of all the flavorings I have used, the strawberry/watermelon is the only one I care for. 

3. I read a list here of thirteen things to do right now to simply your life. They were-

clean as you go, re-evaluate your relationships (cut toxic ties), unsubscribe (too many blogs and websites), de-clutter, write down your daily goals, reply to emails right away, forget multitasking, create a morning routine, re-evaluate your commitments (which hobbies and responsibilities are most important to you), say no, clean up your computer, and plan your day ahead

Which of the tasks listed do you currently find most helpful in keeping life simple? Which item on the list should you adopt in order to simplify your life this month?

I already clean as I go, have unsubscribed from several websites, de-clutter all the time, I make a daily task list, generally reply to emails asap, have a long standing morning routine and definitely plan out my day.  I'm thinking I'm in pretty good shape when it comes to simplifying my life. ~although there can be days that I wonder~

4. What did you do the summer after you graduated from high school? 
I worked and not much else.  I went to work doing various jobs as soon as I was of legal working age.  I don't remember there being anything real exciting about that summer but I loved working so I was happy.

5. Are you a fan of podcasts? If so what's a favorite? 
I take spells listening to podcasts. When I do listen to a podcast it is generally a sermon by one of my favorite preachers and I listen while I walk on the treadmill.

6. Do you think today's fathers have it harder, easier, or just different than fathers in the past?
I would say, different, especially in the world we live in today. There's nothing easy about being a father, but the rewards are worth the work.

7. Tell us one way you're like your father? Or not at all like your father if that's easier?
I am definitely my father's daughter.  My Dad thrived on organization and structure and I do too.  He was a minister and I truly believe these two characteristics played a major role in his success as a pastor.

8.  Insert your own random thought here.
Yesterday I saw a post on Facebook about the qualifications/requirements of the soldiers that guard the tomb of the Unknown Soldier(s).  I read the post and then went online and read more.  I was astounded at the requirements of those soldiers and the commitment they make to fulfill this position.  Talk about dedication!  If you have not read the "whole story" behind these guards, you should. 

Monday, June 13, 2016

Monday's Musings

Well, it's good to be back here and it's good to be home.  I sometimes think that the biggest reason for going on trips is to realize how wonderful home is. ~smile~  Coming back home is the hardest as I am not a fan of going through the piled up mail, washing the piled up laundry and unpacking.  But, we did have a good time in Branson and made a lot of memories. ~and that's what counts~
 Branson is a favorite of mine and Hubby's.  We've probably been at least a dozen times over the years.  This time we rented a large villa and were more than pleased when we arrived.  It was spacious with all the amenities of home.  The couples all had a king size bed and that's pretty much a make or break deal for our family.  We are all pretty spoiled to that and love it when it works out for us to have one when we travel. Plus, there was a big screen TV in each couple's bedroom as well.  As I said, it was very nice.

 We went to Silver Dollar City one of the days and the big kids and our SIL had more fun there than a barrel of monkeys.  He rode any and every ride that they wanted to ride.  Hubby and I enjoyed sitting back and watching them have fun.  The girls rode some of the rides inbetween feeding the babies and keeping them happy.  It was a special time of family fun that we do not get to enjoy very often. And, I'm pretty sure that all you Moms will agree, there's not much more precious than when a Momma has all her biddies under her wing. ~makes me teary eyed~
The week before we went to Branson, Clancy attended Pine Cove in the City. The above picture is him with his group and his counselor.   Pine Cove is a Christian Camp that our children attended from the 6th grade through high school and then worked on staff while they were college.  We love Pine Cove!!!   They have 2 camp sites and will be opening a 3rd site next summer.  Our children attended the site in Tyler, Texas.  They do what they call Camp in the City in various cities and they happen to have one in Oklahoma City this summer.  A church hosts the camp and the kids attend from 9:00 - 4:00 each day.  Clancy had a wonderful time and may actually go to regular camp in Tyler next summer.  If you are looking for a life changing camp for your child or grandchild, I cannot recommend Pine Cove enough. Our son and his family will be attending their 4th year of family camp the end of this month.
 AND, the landscape goodness, it reminds me of the construction of the house. It seems to be taking forever.  But, Hubby reminds me that they started with nothing and it is a huge task when you are putting in a yard literally from the ground up. ~chuckle~ The beds are finished and the larger plants have been placed.  The irrigation system has been installed.  The grass has been laid.  There is still the stone pathways to lay and the work on one area of the pond edge continues.  And, we are actually going to have a few water plants in the pond.  You can see them in the bottom left hand picture.  These  are Louisiana Iris.  Then lots of gravel has been put in that edge of the pond and it will be bordered with larger rock with stepping stones down to it. And, there is all of the beds to fill with the specific plants.  I will definitely have pictures of the finished product, whenever that happens.
In light of this past weekend's event I have a very heavy heart.  I'm reminded of the verse from a song, "this world is not my home, I'm just passing through."  Praise God for this assurance!  May your week be filled with His bountiful blessings!

Friday, June 3, 2016

Lea's Favorites

A few of my favorites today............
My favorite bathing her Momma said, it's the only time in her life that her little pot belly is "too cute for words."  
Succulents....... they seem to be all the rage.  And, the faux succulents are so real that I really can't imagine trying to grow the real thing.  I've been looking for just the right container to have an arrangement of them done in and found it about two weeks ago. It's a replica of an old dough bowl.  I then went on a search for the succulents and then I searched Pinterest for ideas on how I wanted them arranged.  I took it all to my favorite florist and she did an outstanding job of putting it all together.  I've already had two people ask me if it was real.  I'm thrilled with it and it's a favorite for my kitchen table this summer.
 ~~~~~~ what this little book is that Coleman is holding.  If you do not know about these and have little ones or Grans then you need to check these out.  They are made of some type of material that truly is indestructible.  Coleman loves his!  I got him two for Christmas and he has just started playing with them and his Mom tells me that he loves them.  He can bite it and wad it up and it will bounce back.  It's even washable.  They can be found on Amazon, and they are called Indestructibles.
A favorite breakfast's called Cinnamon French Toast Bake and you can find the recipe here.  It's made with canned cinnamon rolls.  My sister in law made this for breakfast one morning when we were visiting and Hubby and I loved it.  The recipe calls for making it in a 9X13 pan and the one time I've made it I made it in an 8X8 pan and halved the recipe. My sister in law had done that and said that she saw some comments about it being hard to get done in the middle when baked in a 9X13.  But, it's just as easy to do it in 2 8X8 and that's what I did for our Branson trip.  I made it and have it in the freezer to take with us this weekend.  It is so, so easy and so, so good!  You should definitely give it a try. NOTE: I did not do the garnish that is suggested on the recipe.  I think it's plenty sweet enough without it and if someone wants added sweetness they can add extra syrup to their portion.

We'll be heading out in the morning towards Branson for a time of family fun.  I'm sure I'll have lots to "show and tell" upon our return.  

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

A Welcome to June Hodgepodge

It's Wednesday, that means the HP questions and it's also the first day of June.  Oh, me, the year is almost half over.  How can that be?  Meanwhile, I'm going to get my brain in gear and answer Joyce's questions.
1. Tell us about one fun thing on your June calendar. 
Oh, this is real easy!  We have rented a huge condo in Branson and we will be meeting our kiddos and their families there this Sat. afternoon.  We will stay until next Wed. and plan to enjoy being together and having fun.   This will be our first time all together since a year ago this past Dec. when we all met up at the Gaylord in Grapevine, Texas.  We booked a 5 bedroom villa the first week of Jan. so we have been anticipating this for a while.  I'm sure I'll have lots to share when we return.

2. How careful are you in the sun? Do you tan or burn? Do you make it a point to see the dermatologist every year? 
I am very careful, I have very sensitive skin and burn easily.  I so wish that I could tan beautifully like my oldest Granddaughter.  But, it's a fake tan for me or no tan at all.  I do see the dermatologist every year.  I'd much rather be safe than sorry.

3. Describe a time when you wanted to 'throw in the towel'?
One time  that came to my mind immediately was last summer when our daughter had their baby, 6 weeks early.  They had just moved into their house 3 days earlier and they were anything but settled.  We had just moved into our new house 2 1/2 weeks earlier but we had to drop everything and go to Oklahoma to be of assistance to them.  When we walked in their house there were literally boxes piled to the ceiling.  I knew that we had to get all those boxes unpacked and their house in living order, no matter how long it took.  Hubby and I dove in with all we had and in 8 days we had every box unpacked and the house livable.  But, when we walked in I definitely wanted to throw in the towel. ~it was overwhelming~ Added note:  we were so thrilled that we could go and be of such assistance to our daughter and SIL during such a stressful time.  They were definitely between a rock and a hard place.

4. What's a song you love that has a day of the week in the title or lyrics? 

Monday Monday by the Momma's and the Poppa's. It came out in 1966 and has such a catchy tune and I've sung it more times than I can recall.  Plus, I love Monday's!

5. Are you a fan of berries? Which one's your favorite? What's the most recent berry dish you've eaten? Which blueberry breakfast food appeals to you most-blueberry pancakes, blueberry yogurt, or a blueberry muffin? 
I'm a big fan of blueberries but not really any others.  I recently made a Lemon Blueberry Poke Cake and it's absolutely delish!  It is a wonderful spring and summer dessert.

6. What's something you want to do before your next birthday? 
Humm..........well, my birthday is July 29th, so not so far away.  I haven't even given a thought to something I might want to do between now and then.  Perhaps it would be to see the finished result of our landscape.  Surely that is possible given that this is their 3rd week to be working on it.

7. June 1st is National Say Something Nice Day, so let's all say something nice here. 

I have been at this thing called blogging 7 1/2 years and what fun it has been.  One of the delights is all the folks I have met and have even been privileged to meet about 4 of them face to face.  And, the other delight is those of you that take the time to read my blog.  Hardly a week goes by that someone doesn't mention my blog and something they read on it and I had absolutely no idea that they even knew I had a blog. I have a blog for my own enjoyment but when someone else enjoys it, then that's like "icing on the cake" for me.

8. Insert your own random thought here.
I mean, don't you want to squeeze this little butterball!  He went for his check up yesterday and weighed in at 18 lbs. 7 oz. He was 9 months old yesterday.  He seems mighty content to be at the Drs. office.  Needless to say, I can't wait to get my hands on him this weekend.