Wednesday, July 29, 2020

A Moving Hodgepodge

From this Side of the Pond

1. Last time you moved house? Something you've learned in moving house?
Well, we are about to celebrate our 5 year anniversary of moving into this house.  It was August 11, 2015.
We had lived in our last house 36 years and that's way to long to live in the same house in my opinion. ~smile~  Stuff somehow seems to accumulate and I cannot tell you how much stuff I got rid of when we moved.  And, I'm really good at getting rid of stuff all the time but you would have never guessed that when we moved.  I've tried really hard to not let stuff accumulate in our new house but it remains to be seen how good of a job I've done.  I've learned "stuff just accumulates quickly."

2. Move mountains, move along, make a wrong move, moved to tears, get a move on, move up, move over, move out of the way, move the deck chairs on the Titanic, move it!...pick one and tell us how it fits your recent circumstances.
I have two and the first would be "move along."  I think that's what I've done and many others, during these pandemic days.  Just keep moving and hopefully it will end SOON.

Second would be "moved to tears."  That is the way that I often feel in these past weeks when I watch the news and see the hatred, disrespect, meanness, and destruction happening in our great nation.

3. What have you been doing to make yourself move (aka stay fit-active) during these strange times?
Really nothing any different than what I normally do.  I ride the elliptical every morning, M-F, for 30 minutes.  It's not a lot but I figure it's a whole lot better than nothing and I've been either walking or doing the elliptical for about 35 years.  I could and probably should do more, but............

4. This week's calendar includes celebrations for the following foods-

National Coffee Milkshake Day (Sunday), National Creme Brûlée Day (Monday), National Milk Chocolate Day (Tuesday), National Chicken Wing Day (Wednesday), National Lasagne Day (Wednesday), National Cheesecake Day (Thursday), and National Avocado Day (Friday)

Which one on the list would you be most inclined to celebrate? Which would you be most inclined to skip?

I had no idea about these but it just so happens that Lasagne is on our menu for tomorrow's dinner.  I know, it will be a day late, but, hey, it's close.  We'll have family here and Lasagne is always a good meal for a bigger group.  
I would have no trouble skipping National Chicken Wing Day. I've never had one so guess I might not know what I'm missing but I really don't care to find out. 

5. Next week's Hodgepodge lands in August! I know!! Raise your hand if you feel like July flew by in the blink of an eye? Now bid farewell to your July acrostic style. If you don't know what that means click here.

J - jeering by lots of very discontented folks
U -ugliness across our nation 
L - Lea's birthday month
Y - youth, a thing of the past for Lea ~chuckle~ 

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

These dear folks, my brother, his wife and daughter will be arriving this afternoon for a few days from Arizona and Iowa.  I'm so excited that they decided to arrive on my birthday and know that they did that intentionally. ~chuckle~ The only sad part of this visit will be that my brother, who has not seen our Daddy since last Nov., will only be able to have window visits with him.  But, other than that, we're going to try and have a good, good  time of being together.  The very best birthday present I could ask for!

Monday, July 27, 2020

What's Up?

Well, my dear readers have probably wondered if I fell off the face of the earth. But, I haven't, just haven't  been inspired to blog in recent weeks.  I've been busy with other things that I enjoy but didn't want you to completely forget about me, so thought an update was in order.

The Best Easy Chocolate Chip Cookies - The Wholesome Dish

I LOVE to bake and I've baked more cookies than the law allows since the Covid pandemic.  I guess it has served as a type of therapy for me.  Week before last I made Chocolate Chip, Peanut Butter, Sugar, and Pecan cookies plus a batch of Brownies.  My freezer is stocked and I've shared them with family and  friends and still have plenty more to share.  A dear friend gave me the cutest cookie platter for my upcoming birthday and I look forward to using it real soon.

We had dear friends come for a visit last week and it was such a nice break from all that surrounds us these days.

I hosted a dinner one evening while they were here for some of their friends from high school.  Both Diane and Dwight are from here and enjoyed visiting with these long time friends.  I had the men sit at one table and the gals at another and I had so much fun creating the table scape for the gals.

Remember seeing these on my Prime Purchases last month?  The vases come empty and I had my favorite local floral designer do these arrangements in them.  They were a big hit with the ladies and really cute and perfect for an informal setting.  It was also a fun diversion from all that surrounds us.

I received a call from the assisted living facility where my Dad lives one morning this past week.  They wanted to inform me that my sweet Dad's apartment had flooded and a lot of his ceiling had fallen in. A workman was in the attic doing some kind of work and accidently stepped on the sprinkler (a part of the sprinkler system) above my Dad's room.  It burst and a big MESS happened.  Daddy was fine and thankfully none of the ceiling fell on him.  It wasn't heavy ceiling but a lot of wet insulation fell with it and I'm afraid it might have literally scared him to death if it had fallen on him.  The administrator told me he would have to move to another room immediately as his room would have to be totally remodeled.  So, to make a real long story short, they granted me and my sweet daughter in law special permission to go in and assist with his move.  Goodness, it was overwhelming but we managed to get it done and they allowed me to go back in the next day and put the finishing touches on things.  He had to move across the hall so everything in his new apartment is opposite of what it was in his old room.  Bless his heart, he's handled it like a trooper and while it was a tough way to get to spend some time with him, we both enjoyed our time together.  I did nearly have a heat stroke with the mask, the plastic overlay and gloves on, but I survived.  It was a tad bit sad when I left as we both had no idea when we would get to be together again.  ~did I mention that I'm sick of this pandemic~

And, these precious girls,

and these cute boys are preparing to return to school.  And, no one knows exactly what that is going to look like.  Both of their schools have plans and we can only hope that their plans go as planned.  And, both our daughter and DIL are a bit anxious about their school year  as teachers.  There's still so much unknown.  Just one more reason for me to be much in prayer for this coming school year. 

As I mentioned above, I have an upcoming birthday, as in this Wednesday.  Diane started my birthday week with this beautifully wrapped gift.   She knows I love birds and this was the most beautiful bird gift wrap and inside was the cutest cookie platter.  She knows me well!

youtube: Zakia Chanell pinterest: elchocolategirl instagram ...

Another precious friend gave me a Charcuterie Board and I can hardly wait to "try my hand" with it.  I think the sky is the limit as to what you can create with them so I'll be sure and share with you my first creation.  I ordered a book of ideas  from Amazon and will let you know how it goes.

I already feel so celebrated and my birthday isn't until Wednesday.  At this stage of life I'm just thankful to be here and celebrating.  

These pandemic days have been so disheartening and my heart had been saddened by all of the ugliness, anger, and disrepect in addition to the Covid.  So, I am not attached to the news, trying to stay connected with those I love and remembering that God is still on His throne and none of this has caught Him by surprise. 

Woodland Grace A Special Prayer For You Textual Art on Wood

May you have a blessed week!

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

A Secret Hodgepodge

From this Side of the Pond
Another Wednesday, another Hodgepodge, I love having this consistency in a world that is anything but consistent.  Well, guess it is consistently insane, come to think about it.  But, for now, I'll enjoy answering the questions for the week.

1. The Hodgepodge lands this year on National Secret Keeping Day...on a scale of 1-10 (with 1 being I'm a blabbermouth and 10 being I'm a vault) how good are you at keeping secrets?
I am very good at keeping secrets and am thankful for having a few folks in my life that know the value of keeping secrets as well. 

I read here nine jobs for people who can keep a secret-cybersecurity worker, executive assistant, housekeeper, lawyer, nuclear plant technician, physician, private investigator, psychologist, security guard  Of the jobs listed, which one most interests you and why?
I have always thought that being a private investigator would be the MOST interesting job and have said, "in my next life I'm going to be a private investigator."  But, thankfully in my next life no one there will need PI's and we'll be enjoying a peace unlike anything we have ever known. PTL!!

2. What's the secret of life (or one of them anyway)?
Remember this acrostic everyday
J - Jesus first
                                                                        O - Others second
                                                                        Y - Yourself last
What a wonderful world it would be if we all lived with JOY!

3. Off the record, best-kept secret, a fly on the wall, top secret, my lips are sealed, secret shopper, as quiet as a mouse, poker face, spill the beans, open secret, bite your tongue...which secret idiom can you best relate to right now? Explain.
Oh, for sure, "bite my tongue."  There have been several instances in recent weeks where I have overheard conversations that I so wanted to get involved in.  But, it just wasn't worth it and I have bitten my tongue.  A very wise decision for sure! 

4. Spill here the secret ingredient in one of your favorite recipes?
Well, I had never heard of Garlic Pepper until about 5 years.  I've heard of Garlic Salt all my life but for some reason, had no idea about Garlic Pepper.  I was eating a Chicken Salad made by a friend of mine and I knew the minute I tasted it that there was something in it that was just extra good.  I ask her what she put in it and all the ingredients were familiar to me until she said, Garlic Pepper.  Needless to say, I've never made Chicken Salad again without the addition of Garlic Pepper and it can always be found in my spice drawer.

5. My mama celebrates a big birthday tomorrow. Share a favorite quote, song lyric, saying, or verse of scripture that will add some sunshine to her day (ours too!)
Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you. 1Peter 5:7

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

Okay, all together say, "Aweeeee."  Aren't they just the cutest little patriotic boys.  I thought their Momma did a super good job of dressing them on the 4th  and their just such happy fellas.

Put a smile on your face and be kind!!!

Prime Purchases

And, here we are, the first Tuesday of July.  I mean, how did that happen?  Of course, we pretty much lost 2 entire months of this year but, nonetheless, time is flying by.  So, that means it's time to share a few of my Prime Purchases with you.

Scrub Singles
I found these about 3 years ago and have been using them to clean our porcelain kitchen sink ever since.  I recently ran out and they were no where to be found but on Amazon.  They have a sponge like side and a scrubber type side.  They are a one time use for me.  

Buff and Shine
My husband uses these like there is no tomorrow and since our Salley's closed a few months ago, he's had to resort to Amazon to find them.  They are fingernail buffers and he probably uses them everyday.  He has the most well kept hands of any man I know.  So, if you have natural nails and want to buff them to a nice shine, then you need to order these.

6.8 Ounce Spray Bottle

These are the neatest spray bottles and you just may need them in your life.  I was looking for a smaller spray bottle and found exactly what I wanted in these.  They are easy to handle, a very hard plastic and the sprayer is terrific.  I have some after bath splash moisturizer that has a pour spout and I do not like that and  now I have poured it into one of these and can mist my body with it.  They come 3 to a pack and I'm sure I'll find a good use for the other two.  If you need smaller spray bottles then I recommend these.

Stainless Steel Straws with Silicone Tips

If you've been reading my blog very long then you know that I am a "straw girl."  I do NOT drink without a straw.  I am NOT a fan of the metal straws but these stainless straws with the silicone tips are "A Okay."  And, they come in the greatest colors and they come with these cute little brushes to clean them.

Capri Leggings

I was looking for a certain color capri leggings and found these.  Their rating was 4 our of 5 stars and they come in a lot of great colors.  They have a denim look to them and the fit is great.  I recommend sizing up one size.  I do not like my leggings skin tight, for me I prefer a little "give" in the fit. These fit perfectly and the price is very reasonable for the quality.

False Eyelashes
Okay ladies, have you been wanting to try false eyelashes?  Well, order these and give them a try. You get 3 pair for under $10.  These are very natural looking, not overly thick and are easy peasy to apply.  I decided to give them a try since it seems eyelashes are so "in" right now.  I wore them for 2 days and haven't worn them since.  I just did not think they were worth the effort and I feel like, for me, that my natural lashes look better.  But, you might feel differently.  

Ladies Head Vases

Ladies, these may be the CUTEST item that I have ever posted on my Prime Purchases.  These are vases and they were EMPTY when I purchased them but I took them to my trusty floral designer and she put these cute arrangements in them.  I remember my Grandmother having a couple of the vintage ones when I was a little girl.  Amazon also has the vintage looking ones as well but when I saw these I couldn't resist.  I think they would be so cute as the table scape for a ladies luncheon, or how about for someone's office desk.  I'm even thinking they might be what I give our office girls for Administrative Professional Day next April.  And, if my house lent itself to this type decor, I'd sure use them.  But, they would look very out of place.  All these cute ladies need is a name. ~giggle~

Cell Phone Stand/Holder

And, these are pretty cute too and they are very handy!  These are adjustable cell phone holders and in such "happy" colors.  AND, their less than $7 for all 6.  They would make great "happies" for your family or friends, which is what I'm going to do with them.  I mean, who does not need one.  I have 2 and I keep my phone on mine when I am at home.  I have one in our kitchen and one in my home office. They had a 4.5 out of 5 star rating.  I think you may need to order some. 

Have a great Tuesday don't forget to be a blessing to someone today.

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

A Blueberry Hodgepodge

From this Side of the Pond
As we are living in ever changing days there's this one constant in my life, the Wednesday Hodgepodge.  Hey, it's the little things folks.

1. Are you currently making plans of any kind? What kind? What emotions are associated with the planning process? Tell us about one plan you had to cancel due to the current situation which shall remain nameless. Ha!
No big plans being made but we do have two sets of company coming in July and we're sure excited about that.  One set is dear friends and the other is my brother, his wife and their daughter.  We will be going to Oklahoma the first of August to help out with the boys when our daughter has to return to work but the boys do not go back until a later date. ~it takes a village sometimes~  Then we plan to go to the Atlanta area in Sept. to see Hubby's two sisters.  So, we do have a few things to look forward to and that is a very good thing.  But, we can only hope and pray that nothing happens with the Covid restrictions, to change these plans.  We had to cancel our trip to Oklahoma back in March because of all the Covid mess.  Hopefully that will NEVER happen again but time will tell.

2. Last time you saw stars, either literally or figuratively?
Most days if I even turn the news on for 5 minutes, I start to see stars.  Oh, my, goodness, it is so disconcerting and depressing and I'm much better off not watching it.  That's all I'll say about that.

3. Blueberries yay or nay? Blueberry pie, blueberry muffins, blueberry yogurt, blueberries by the handful...what's your pleasure?
Oh, I LOVE me some blueberries, but always in something, not by the handful.  I'd say blueberry muffins are my favorite and I have some fresh blueberries in our freezer that I'll be making some muffins with very shortly.

4. swim against the tide, swimming upstream, in the swim, sink or swim, makes your head swim...choose one of the 'swim' idioms listed and tell us how/why you relate?
And, once again I refer to the national news.........I often think that I am swimming against the tide when I watch the news.

5. Sum up your June in a single sentence.
We had our Oklahoma family come for a visit and that "made" our June worth happening.

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

Okay, I told you when our pergola was finished, I would share a picture with you.  Well, here it is!  We are thrilled with it and the addition of the lights and decorative wrought iron pieces gave it such a nice touch.  I believe I remember Hubby saying it is 10' X 18'.  It's rather large.  And, while we may not use it everyday, it sure does make a lovely addition to our landscape.

We took our wrought iron table and chairs that were on our back porch and put it under the pergola as it was more suited for weather.  We do have the middle of the pergola covered but in severe weather, whatever is under it, will definitely get pretty wet.  And, the firepit table and chairs are perfect on our porch and make our porch look like an extension of the house.  Talk about comfortable!  The chairs are swivel rockers and the middle piece on the table lifts off to reveal the firepit.  We look forward to trying it out when we are not fighting some of the hottest and most humid weather on record.  

And, I leave you with this.............yes, there is still good in EVERY day.

Every Day May Not Be Good Wood Plaque Wall Décor

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

A "Pinky" Hodgepodge

grab button for From this Side of the Pond
I've missed the past couple of weeks of the HP and am thrilled to be back today.  And, as always, thanks to Joyce for providing this link up for us each week.

1. This time last year where were you?
Right where I am today, at home.  June is generally not a traveling month for us, our daughter usually comes to see us in June.

2. In honor of National Pink Day (June 23rd) tell us your favorite pink food or beverage. Was it on the menu at your house yesterday? Do you like to wear the color pink? If we came to visit would we find this color in your home decor? Blush-fuschia-salmon-raspberry-your favorite shade of pink?
My favorite pink food would be a dessert called Pink Fluff.  It's a pie made of whipped cream and a can of cherry pie filling, poured in a graham cracker crust and chilled.  It is a wonderful summer time dessert.
No, it wasn't on the menu yesterday nor has it been in a very long time.
I can and do wear soft pink tops on occasions but I currently do not have any pink in my closet.
No, there is absolutely no shade of pink in our home decor.
I would say that blush and salmon are my favorite shades of pink.

3. Stop and smell the roses, looking through rose colored glasses, a rose by any other name, not all moonlight and roses, no rose without a thorn...which rosy saying currently fits your life in some way? Explain.
Hummm......I think I'd have to say, "looking through rose colored glasses."  I say that because that is how I am trying to view the current condition of our country. I'm trying hard to stay positive and hope that it all turns out a whole lot better than the way it is headed.

4. Are you a 'reader'? Do you tend to read lighter books in the summer months? Do you have a summer reading list? If so, give us a title or two.

I have gotten back in to reading since the Covid stay at home order back in March.  While being so confined, I began reading and have so enjoyed it.  I use to read a lot and got away from it for a while but I'm back at it now.  Above is my current stack of books.  I do like heavy or historical books.  I generally enjoy just a good fiction novel.

5. Share with us one rose and one thorn from your weekend.
The rose would be a lovely breakfast with friends on Saturday morning before Hubby and I headed out to find light fixtures and a fan for our pergola.

A thorn would have to be the very sad condition of our country. It grieves my heart.

6. Insert your own random thought here.

Unmarked Graves, a song by 28 Days on Spotify
Monday our illustrious governor gave a Covid update and it was NOT what I wanted to hear.  We were suppose to enter Phase 3 in the coming days but no more.  He added 28 more days to Phase 2.  Good grief!  Phase 3 means that families that have loved ones in senior living facilities would be able to go in to see them.  I am beyond ready to get in to my Daddy's apartment/room.  We have been able to have porch visits the past month but I am tired of having to depend on someone at the facility to do for him what I normally do. Things such as make sure his socks match his clothes, his candy baskets are properly filled, his linens changed in a timely manner and the list goes on and on.  His limited eyesight prevents him from being able to do these things on his own.  And, one would think that "assisted living" means just that, ASSISTED.  But, sadly it doesn't.  I have to contract separately with a nurse to administer his meds twice a day.  Assisted living facilities in Louisiana are not allowed to do anything medically  for their residents.  I mean, really!!!!  Oh, my, guess I'm sounding a bit negative and I don't like that.  So, I'll close by saying throughout this whole Covid ordeal my Daddy has been so content and for that, I am more than thankful.

100 Famous Quotes About Life That Will Inspire You

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Lately with Lea

Well, I'm pretty sure that many of you have probably wondered if I had left the blogging world.  I suppose the only excuse that I can give is that it just hasn't been a priority in recent weeks.  And, I've been enjoying some other hobbies that have taken my blogging time.  So, there you have it and now let me share a bit of what I've been up to lately.

New Bedding

During the covid stay at home time I had way too much time to think about home decor.  I have never been happy with the bedding in our guest suite and decided to start looking for something else.  Well, I came across these spreads and shams and I LOVE them.  We have a king bed and 2 twin beds in the suite.  I much prefer bedspreads to comforters and dust ruffles but bedspreads are a little difficult to find.  I found these at Penney's and they were on big time sale.  I am now very happy with the entire look and am so glad that we have this private suite for any overnight guests that we have visit.

The Pergola

We've been talking about having a pergola built ever since we built this house and finally we had it built.  It is lovely but we are still putting the finishing touches on it.  The structure has been finished for 2-3 weeks and the electricity has been run to it.  Now we are waiting to get the decorative touches added, the fans and the lights.  We have a swing and a table and 4 chairs under it.  I'll be sure and show you the finished product.  It's a lovely addition to our patio.


At the beginning of the "stay at home" order I was in one of our inside storage spaces and ran across a half finished baby afghan that I had started 12 years ago for our first grandchild.  I'm not sure what happened  to cause me not to finish it and just put it up.  But, whatever, when I saw it I decided it was wayyyy past time to finish it.  So, with plenty of time on my hands, I had it finished in short order.  It is 40" x 40" and so, so soft (pictured on right)  Finishing that one sort of reignited my interest in crocheting, so off I went in search of more crochet thread.  Well, there are so many different types of thread now and I found a very thick thread that I thought might be fun to crochet.  It was really too thick for my liking but once I started I saw it through to the end.  It is about 60" x 60" and it feels like a weighted blanket, very, very heavy (pictured on left).  It is very pretty colors and hopefully I think of someone that would enjoy having it.  I have now started another one and  who knows how long I will stick with it, but for now, I'm sure enjoying crocheting.


I use to read quite a lot, but in recent years I haven't read much more than blogs and a few magazine articles.  Well, I've gotten back with reading and am so enjoying it.  I started the Miss Julia series and they are so entertaining.  There are 23 books in the series, so I'll be busy with them for a while.  I've had several friends tell me that all the books by Lisa Wingate are great, so I have 3 of those I'm going to read.  I'm going to take a break from Miss Julia when I finish book 2 and read one of the Lisa Wingate books and then will go back to Miss Julia.

Memory Bears

I've  been looking forward to sharing these little guys with you.  A lovely lady here in our town, who is a seamtress extraordinaire, makes these "Memory Bears."  When I first saw them at one of her shows I knew that I had to have some made for our Grans.  They are all made out of one of my Daddy's long sleeved shirts.  And, you can see his initials on the pockets of each one.  I guess since my Dad is still living that these are not memory bears yet, but one day they will be and I think they are the sweetest physical memory his great grans could have.  I gave the bears to the grans mothers this past weekend while our daughter was here visiting. I also had one made for myself. NOTE:  If you want to know more about Peggy and how to get in touch with her, just let me know.  She does have a FB page called, Peggy's Stitches.  She can do them out of shirts, blouses, skirts and  any material that you might choose.  Her work is perfection!

Bridal Bears

And, the Memory Bears are NOT all that Peggy does.  She also made these bride bears for me out of my wedding dress.  These will one day go to my two granddaughters, probably when they become engaged to be married.  Yes, they are only 5 and 10 years old now, but I didn't want to wait to have them made.  I bought a keepsake box to store them in and have shown them to my DIL and she was more than a little thrilled.  Every thing on the bear and the veil is from my dress and veil. I feel pretty sure that the girls will love them when that time comes in their lives. Talk about advance planning!

Tee Ball

Our little Andi Kate is playing t-ball this year and of course, didn't get to play when they were suppose to but are making up for it now.  She and her little team are so cute.  I definitely look a bit silly with my black sunglasses and black visor on.  You can't really tell where one ends and the other starts.  Oh, well, it was hot and the sun was bright the evening this picture was taken. 

Family Time

Then, last Friday, Bridget and the boys came for a visit from Oklahoma.  It was her first time to make the drive by herself since Case was born (he's 10 months old now).  They had a great and uneventful trip.

Case is now mobile and crawling or scooting all over the place.  He is the cutest and sweetest little butterball and kept us all on our toes.

The bigger kids had fun fishing, playing and staying cool in the girls "redneck" pool. They are 4 and 5 and 10 and 11, so it works out great.

Of course, Daddy is still confined to the assisted living facility for the most part.  He can come out on the front porch (as of a month ago) and we can visit out there as long as we do not touch.  But, we wanted him to get to see the baby and he could not come outside to see him so we took Case to visit through the window.  Dad's eyesight is so very limited and then trying to look through a screen made it even more difficult.  But, he enjoyed us coming by and visiting for a few minutes.

Afternoon of Pampering

Hanna Beth spent the day with me yesterday while Andi Kate was having dress rehearsal for her dance recital this Friday evening.  Hanna Beth has such pretty nails and hands and she loves a manicure and pedicure so we decided to go and get a little pampering.  She is growing into such a lovely young lady.

So, there you have it, what I've been doing lately.  Blogging takes a whole lot of time and I truly do not know how so many gals blog  I know that for many of them, it is their job and provides their income.  But, mine is for my sheer enjoyment and sometimes life gets in the way or there's something I'd rather be doing with my time.  And, the same goes for reading others blog.  I have not been reading as many blogs either as it requires a good bit of time as well.  But, seasons come and seasons go.  But, it sure has been fun to create this post and I'll try to drop by and visit you my dear blogging friends in the next  few days.  And, a big thanks to all who take the time to read my posts.

Blessings abundant during these most unsettling times!