This Hodgepodge Feels Like Home…

This time of the year always brings back memories of moving into our second new home.  We weren’t quite finished with our house, but, on November 9, 2007, Ed and I moved out of our home of 30 years, and into our second home.  It’s hard to believe almost nine years have passed since then.  I can still remember hauling boxes and furniture across the yard…  Yes, we moved right next door!

Thanks so much to our hostess, Joyce, for taking time to host this week’s Hodgepodge, especially since she’s getting ready to move, herself!  I appreciate you, Joyce, and best wishes with the move!

1. Besides your very own house, describe a place where you feel most ‘at home’?

I guess that would have to be our daughter’s house, located next door to us, which used to be our house until about nine years ago.  It’s only natural that I’d still feel ‘at home’ there, since Ed and I lived there for over 30 years, and raised our family in that house.

2. When did you last ‘hit a home run’ with something? Explain.

I’m going to say “surviving hurricane Matthew”.  We only lost our power for 21 hours, compared to many neighbors who were without electricity for several days.  Although we lost two large trees, we had no damage to either of the houses on our property.  Nine family members stayed together in our tiny, two bedroom, one bathroom home, for 3 days and 4 nights, and everyone got along well. God is good!

3. Tell us about something you love in your house or kitchen that is ‘homemade’.

I have a large, ‘homemade’ sign hanging over the refrigerator that says “Kathy’s Diner”, and has a menu written on it.  I had this sign specially made for my kitchen whenever we built this house, and I love it.  It matches my red, white, and black Coca Cola decor.  Look closely, at the picture below, and you can see the sign over the refrigerator.

Coca cola Christmas kitchen...

4. ‘A man’s home is his castle’…which of the world’s ten most captivating castles (according to The Travel Channel) would you most like to visit and why-

Mont Saint-Michel (France), Edinburgh Castle (Scotland), Neuschwanstein Castle (Germany), Glamis Castle (Scotland), Windsor Castle (England), Chateau de Chambord (France), Hampton Court Palace (England), Prague Castle (Prague), St. Michael’s Mount (England), Leeds Castle (England), and Swallow’s Nest (Ukraine)

I’m sure any one of these castles would be captivating, and fun to visit, but I don’t know anything about any of them, so I’ll take a pass on answering this one.

5. What’s a recent or upcoming plan or project that’s required you do a little homework before getting started? Did the homework cause you to abandon your plan or adjust it in some way?

Hurricane Matthew has caused a couple of unplanned projects at our house.  First of all, we had to move two freezers and install a new screen door on our storage house (for ventilation).  Next, was the project of cutting up and removing the two trees that were blown down, which required some repair work to the chain saw. (Ed still has one tree left to cut) Last comes the project of shopping for a generator, so we’ll be prepared for the next big storm that blows our way!

6. In your opinion, is homework an unnecessary evil or a valuable practice? Should schools be done with homework? Why or why not?

I think a little reading and math homework is valuable, because there’s not much time for practice during class. However, teachers need to be considerate and assign homework in moderation.

7. Share a favorite memory of your childhood hometown.

I remember when ‘Dairy Queen’ first came to our tiny little town.  It was back in the 60’s, and it was a big deal to everyone!  I don’t know which I liked best–the hamburgers and french fries or the soft serve ice cream.  Our original Dairy Queen was a very small, barn-shaped building, with a red roof, and no inside seating.  Over the years, our Dairy Queen’ has been renovated two or three times, and the name has been changed.  These days, it’s a very nice D Q Grill-n-Chill, with inside [or outside] seating, and I still enjoy their hamburgers, french fries, and soft serve ice cream, on rare occasions.

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photo courtesy of Google

There’s something else that’s special about our local DQ.  The owner, Zuber Malek is a wonderful person, who cares about, and gives back, to the community.  Local citizens have responded to his kindness and generosity by giving his DQ the honor of being a top fund raiser for The Children’s Miracle Network!  Below is a picture of the sign, showing this year’s grand total:13906971_10153903695795892_7909803460642953741_n

Random:

Yesterday, the ‘unthinkable’ happened to our daughter.  She flushed her toilet, then came back a while later to discover a disaster.  The toilet flapper didn’t close after the tank refilled, and, apparently, the drain was sluggish, and couldn’t handle the flow of water.  The two malfunctions became the ‘perfect storm’ for a flood. Water went all into their bedroom, into the dining room, and into the kitchen.  Water even ran out the back door and down the steps.  Did I mention our daughter has laminate flooring?  Laminate flooring and water do not make a good combination.  Within the matter of a few minutes, there was quite a mess to deal with.

By mid-evening, with the help of family, the kitchen and dining room had been disassembled, with cabinets and furniture removed.  All of the soggy laminate had been taken up, as well.  Hopefully, there will be no chance of rain in the forecast, because most of the kitchen cabinets are sitting on the front porch, and will be sitting there for a few days while the floor dries out.  Fun times!

 

 

 

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Published in: on October 26, 2016 at 7:48 am  Comments (14)  
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Miscellaneous Monday…

When I last blogged, last week,  it was the day after Ed and I visited a neighboring county’s fair.  It had been YEARS since just the two of us had been to a fair, and we really enjoyed ourselves.  We ate a pancake/sausage supper, watched some pigs race, admired various breeds of poultry on exhibit, visited the old farm equipment exhibit, toured a very old log house, filled with antiques, and even watched syrup making and cornmeal grinding in progress.  It was a nostalgic look back at a much simpler time.  I think, if the truth be told, those were much happier times, too.

Ed and I were in the process of trying to take each other’s picture, at the fair, when a sweet student nurse stopped and offered to take this picture of us together.p1010523Bless her heart, it’s good to know there are still kind people among us.  The picture is a little blurry, but, at least, she captured the memory.

Ed and I were able to literally experience God’s protecting hand upon us on the way home from the fair.  We were about three miles, or so, from our home, when we noticed something odd in the road just ahead of us.  Apparently a car accident had just happened, and before we could even process what was going on, and slow down properly, suddenly there was an entire wheel (suspension still attached, but no car) looming in the lane in front of us, while the wrecked was car in the lane beside us.  Thanks to Ed’s quick reaction,  we were able to swerve off the edge of the road, without losing control, and avoid hitting the wheel.  I shudder to think what might have happened if our little PT Cruiser had hit that large wheel in the road!  I’m so thankful we were not involved in the first accident, or in a second accident caused by the debris of the first accident. Praise the Lord!  The whole incident shook us up pretty good, though.  You just never know…  After the fair trip, the rest of our week was ‘fairly’ uneventful (pun intended!).

Ed began the tedious work of cutting up one of the pecan trees we lost in hurricane Matthew.  It was a good-sized tree, so it’s been a pretty good job for one person.  It hasn’t helped matters that our chain saw isn’t being agreeable. He’s almost finished with tree #1, but a second tree is still awaiting his attention.  The chain saw is still acting up.

My poor hens are still molting, and they still look awful.  Egg production has stopped, and their appetite is small, these days.  I actually had to buy a dozen eggs, last week!  I certainly can’t complain, though, because this little flock of nine hens has laid over 3,000 eggs!   I’ve decided to keep ‘the girls’ penned up and give them some medication for a few days, in hopes it will help them get back to normal.  They’ll [eventually] continue to lay more eggs, but their best laying days are behind them, since their ages range from 4 1/2 to 2 years old.

In other news, our oldest grandchild, and only granddaughter, celebrated her tenth birthday, over the weekend.  She’s grown up so much this year!  She’s growing into quite a lovely young lady, and we’re so proud of her.  Her family celebrated with a party, on Saturday, which all of the guests enjoyed.

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Speaking of celebrating, tonight will mark the one-year anniversary of Ed’s heart attack.  I’m SO thankful he’s alive and well to celebrate!  It’s been a very special year, and we’ve treasured every day of it.  A good friend, and former co-worker of mine, buried her husband, just yesterday.  But for the grace of God, I could be celebrating the one-year anniversary of Ed’s death, today.

Speaking of God, Ed and I traveled to a different church, yesterday, to hear our son speak, there, for the first time.  It was about a thirty minute drive to this little church, located on a little country road at the other end of our county.  The church building was simple, the congregation was small, but the service was so sweet.  It took me back in time, to the little country churches of my youth.  Ed and I both agree, we enjoyed visiting there.

The Sunday evening service took us back to a church we had visited last Sunday evening.  It turned out they were having a special prayer service for the upcoming election.  Again, it was another sweet service.  They invited us to join them, next week, for their 5th Sunday night sing.

I’m running a bit behind with getting this blog post written and posted, so I should stop right here, for today.  Ed and I began today by having blood work done, and getting our yearly flu shot.  What a way to start the week, but it’s a way of life, at our age!  I’m just thankful we’ve lived to see another day, together.  Amen!

Have a happy Monday!

 

Published in: on October 24, 2016 at 1:58 pm  Comments (3)  
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Hodgepodge # 284

You’ve gotta’ love and appreciate the tenacity and determination of our Hodgepodge hostess, Joyce.  She’s only days away from moving into her new home, but she still managed to plan and host The Hodgepodge!  Thanks, Joyce, my hat is off to you.

Here are today’s questions:

1. What would you say is your strongest sense?

That’s a good question!  My eyesight and hearing sure aren’t what they used to be.  Working with stain and polyurethane, in an enclosed area, has dulled my sense of smell, too.  I have neuropathy in my feet, so my sense of ‘touch’ isn’t what it used to be either.  I still enjoy eating, so I guess I’ll say my sense of ‘taste’ is my strongest sense 🙂

2. Do you believe in the idea of a ‘sixth sense’? Why or why not?

Yes, I do believe in a ‘sixth sense’.  Sometimes, I’ll get a particular ‘feeling’ about something (or someone) that I just can’t explain.  I refer to this ‘feeling’ as my sixth sense.

3. When do you most feel like a slave to time? Explain.

Now that Ed and I are both retired, the time I feel most like a “slave to time” is on Sundays.  We  watch the clock closely, all day, so we won’t be late for church.

4. Have you ever worked in a restaurant? How would you rate the experience? If you could own a restaurant what kind would it be?

When I was a teenager I worked in the restaurant part of my uncle’s gift shop/restaurant.  I hated everything about it, and only lasted a couple of days.  I’d rate the experience zero stars, and I’d never own a restaurant of any kind, period!

5. Ever traced your family tree? Share something interesting you learned there.

I’ve never traced my family tree beyond my grandparents, but my paternal grandparents lost two of their children, early in life.  Their only daughter fell, as a child, hit her head and died.  One of their six sons died from a ruptured appendix while still a young man. Oh, I also thought it was interesting that both of my parents had sisters named “Georgia Belle”!

6. What did your childhood bedroom look like?

I had several different bedrooms, while growing up.  The bedroom I remember most ( from ages 12-17) was located on the front corner of the house, so it had two windows facing two different directions.  (I could sit on my bed and watch the teenagers riding from one end of town to the other!)  As a young teen, I painted the walls of my room blue.  The paint job wasn’t perfect, but I was proud of myself.  The furniture in my bed room was older, and had been painted white.  I had a poster of Peter Fonda (as Easy Rider) on my wall, and a stereo in one corner.

7. Anyone who knows me knows I love decorating for special occasions.  

I love to decorate my living room (and sometimes kitchen) for all special occasions, not just Christmas. (although Christmas is my favorite.)  I have a ‘year round’ tree in the living room, and change the decorations, every month, to reflect whatever occasion falls within that month. The shelves in our living room are decorated with matching curios, as well.

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Left:  Year round tree decorated for Easter

Right:  Year round tree decorated for Halloween

 

 

 

 

 

Random:

Ed and I did something, last night, we hadn’t done in years. We went to a county fair, alone! In years past, we’ve always gone to the fair with family, but, this year, we went solo, and you know what? We had a great time!  It was the first time I ever remember going to the fair, on a week night,  not having to worry about how late it was getting.  Yay for retirement 🙂

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Published in: on October 19, 2016 at 8:10 am  Comments (12)  
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Random Observations…

I’ve discovered that life goes on in the aftermath of a hurricane.  Now that everyone in the community has had their power restored, life is pretty much back to normal.  I believe the last of our community had their power restored by last Wednesday. The students have all returned to school, and clean up is in progress almost everywhere I look.  Life goes on.

After being able to actually tour the area we live in, and see much of the damage caused by hurricane Matthew, I now realize, more than ever, how blessed most of us really are!  There are many, many trees down, with a lot of them within just a few feet of people’s homes.  Fortunately, most of the trees fell away from most people’s houses–or in between them.  But for the Grace of God, all those homes could have been damaged, including the former home of Ed’s parents.

I’m observing that our little flock of chickens hasn’t been quite the same since hurricane Matthew.  Their chicken coop is located at the edge of our yard, where several tall pines surround it.  The noise from the storm was LOUD from inside our house, so I can only imagine how it must have sounded to the chickens from their coop outside!  Whenever I let the hens out of their pen, the following morning, the poor things pretty much stayed hidden for the first day after the storm.  The fact that some of our hens are in the middle of molting season hasn’t helped matters, either.  Some of the poor things look like they’ve been plucked, so they’re still looking naked and afraid:)  Egg production is now at a standstill.

Have you ever noticed how one project always seems to lead to another one?  During the hurricane, we were forced to move two freezers from the former home of Ed’s parents.  One freezer we put inside of our storage house, the other we placed under our carport, temporarily.  Because there are no windows for ventilation in our storage house, we had to purchase a screened door for the house.  Ed’s in the process of installing the screened door as I write.

Yesterday, I observed, again, how God will help us triumph over whatever stumbling blocks Satan throws in our path.  Yesterday morning, I woke up with a headache, that persisted all day, and threatened to keep me from attending worship.  I determinedly  made it to the first service, but by the end of the day, I came close to giving in to the headache, which had worsened. I was really struggling because our son was guest speaking at a little church, in town, and I really wanted to hear him preach again.  Finally, at the last minute, I got off the couch, put on my clothes and went to church–headache and all.  And do you know what?  Once I got into church and began the worship service my headache almost went away!  Praise the Lord!

You know, good worship services can take place anytime, anywhere.  What could be sweeter than gathering with four elderly Alzheimer patients, in an assisted living home, singing Jesus Loves Me, and hearing their sweet voices all chiming in?  That experience was priceless, and one I’ll always treasure.

There’s nothing quite like decorating for autumn…twice!  I’d just finished putting up the last of our fall decor, when the weatherman began warning us about hurricane Matthew.  Finally, on the day before the storm, I decided I should bring the outside decorations inside.  I’m so glad I did!  Last Friday, Ed and I  finished decorating–for the second time.  Unfortunately, my blow up jack-o-lantern decided to stop working last night.  What’s a girl to do?

My back is feeling much better, these days.  Although I’m still cautious, I can bend without discomfort, once again.  I still feel some minor nerve involvement in my left leg, but I can live with it, and hope, in time, that will continue to improve, as well.  The surgical site on my ‘backside’ is also doing well.  One of these days I might actually get rid of my padded toilet seat 🙂

I don’t know why, but I’ve really been struggling with this ‘blogging thing’, lately.  What once came so easily, is now so difficult.  I’m lacking in both motivation and energy.  I hope the situation will improve, with time, and that my blogging friends will not forsake me during this difficult time.  Thank you to those who still come by and comment!  I love and appreciate you.  Thank goodness for The Wednesday Hodgepodge, which guarantees I’ll blog and visit at least once a week, but I’m going to try and to better.  With that thought in mind, I’m outta’ here…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Published in: on October 17, 2016 at 11:20 am  Comments (4)  
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A ‘Moving’ Hodgepodge…

It’s a ‘different’ kind of week at our house.  We’re still trying to settle down from the past few days of dealing with hurricane Matthew, and its after effects.  Thankfully,  our power and internet have been restored so I can participate in today’s Hodgepodge!  As always, many thanks to our hostess, Joyce, for hosting.

1. What would you say is the best and worst thing about moving house?

The best thing about moving is getting a fresh start in a new place.  The worst thing about moving is packing, unpacking, and figuring out where everything should go.  I hate moving!

2. What’s moved you recently?

Hearing our two oldest grandsons pray.  I’m very moved by how well the two of them can already pray, even at ages four and seven.

3. Do you feel your life is moving forward, backward, or is on hold? How so?

Life is definitely moving forward, because time is passing at a break-neck speed!  In less than tw0 weeks Ed will, hopefully, be celebrating the year anniversary of his heart attack.  I’ll also receive my first social security check.  (When did I get that old?!)  Last, but not least, our youngest grandchild will also be turning three in about three weeks!  No more babies in our family 😦

4. On the move, move mountains, get a move on, it’s your move, or bust a move…which phrase best applies to some aspect of your life right now? Explain.

For the past five days, it’s been “get a move on” around here.  You see, although we live about 80 miles from the Georgia coast, we happen to live in an area that was greatly affected by hurricane Matthew.  First we had to prepare for the storm, then we had to survive the storm, now we’re cleaning up the mess caused by the storm. (I’ll give more details below.)

5. What song makes you want to get up and move?

These days, there’s not much that makes me want to get up and move, but back in my teen years I loved to dance to this song…

6. Your favorite snack to grab when you’re ‘on the move’?

I don’t really have a favorite snack to grab ‘on the move’, but I’ll say a banana or a pack of crackers because I can eat those while driving.

7. What one accessory makes your house feel like home?

I can’t think of any single accessory that makes our house feel like home, but wall decor is very important to me.  Our new house didn’t feel like a home, to me, until we hung pictures or other kinds of wall decor.

Random:

As I mentioned, earlier, hurricane Matthew sure packed a punch in our area!  I’ve never heard such wind or seen as many downed trees and power lines in our area.  Friday night was definitely a night to remember!  Ed and I lost two large pecan trees, but, fortunately suffered no other property damage.  Our oldest son suffered some mild damage to his home and to their children’s trampoline, but nothing too serious.  Actually, Ed and I were some of the very fortunate few who were able to keep electricity throughout the storm!  What a blessing!

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some of our neighbor’s downed pecan trees

Both of our sons and their families stayed with us during the storm, then both sons lost power at their houses.  When all was said and done, nine of us ended up staying together in our two bedroom, one bathroom house for several days and nights.  We not only survived, but actually had some good times together while doing it!

On the day after the storm, we had to unload and move two freezers, plus the food, to our house because the house where the freezers were kept lost power. We also moved the food from our son’s freezer into our freezer to keep it from thawing.  Our youngest son was able to put his frozen food in our daughter’s freezer because she still had power. We did a lot of food moving, then the unthinkable happened.

Two days after the storm, on Sunday, Ed and I (and our daughter) lost power, too!  Some of the linemen accidentally burned up our transformer while doing some repairs down the line, then had to get a new transformer from Atlanta.  The nine of us were actually sitting around the table having supper when the power went out, so we ended up dining by candlelight!

Things got a little more complicated with nine of us living in a house without power or running water, but we made it! (We have a well/pump, so no power equals no running water, either)  Well, we not only survived, I think we grew closer together.  In hard times, we pulled together–and improvised.  Have you tried PBJ and water for breakfast, lately?  I have!

Fortunately, for us, on Monday morning,  a friend of our DIL’s, who’d already gotten their power restored, was giving away some ice they no longer needed.  When our DIL said we’d like to have the ice, they offered use of their generator, as well.  What a Godsend that turned out to be!  (Ed was about to make an eight hour drive to purchase one.)  We were able to save all of the food we’d worked so hard to grow, pick and store, while many people lost all of their frozen food.  Again, we were so blessed!

100_6099our former pastor’s home

Thankfully, our power was restored, late Monday afternoon, less than twenty-four hours after we lost it.  Our youngest son’s power was restored about nine o’clock Monday night, so they went home.  Our oldest son’s power was restored sometime after bedtime, on Monday night, so they went home yesterday.

Some folks in our area are still without power (four days/nights and counting), because so many trees are down in our area. Many roads are still blocked by fallen trees, so school has been cancelled for the week.  A lot of people sustained damage to their homes or vehicles, but it could have been so much worse.  In most cases, the majority of trees fell away from homes.  What a blessing!

Speaking of blessings, the two people in the picture, below, ‘tied the knot’, fifty-three years ago, today, when they were really just ‘babes’.  Today, they’re still together, and going strong!  I’d like to send special wishes to my brother and his wife (who’s always been like a sister to me).

Happy Anniversary guys! I love y’all and hope you have a great day!

53 years and counting…

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Published in: on October 12, 2016 at 7:50 am  Comments (13)  
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A Simple Woman’s Daybook Post…

For Today…

Tuesday, October 4, 2016.

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Looking out my window…

I’m still enjoying my windmill and all of the flowers surrounding it.  We received 2 1/2 inches of wonderful rain, yesterday, and it was much needed!  I couldn’t even remember the last time it had rained.

I am thinking…

How nice it was not to have to water all of my flowers, this morning!  Thanks to yesterday’s rain, they were still nice and moist. I love my flowers, but it’s a chore to keep them all watered.

I’m also thinking how much Ed and I enjoyed visiting, yesterday, with the former pastor (and his wife) of the last church we attended.  He and his wife are really nice and we always enjoy our time together.  He’s currently serving as a supply pastor, and waiting on God to lead him to his next church.

I am thankful…

for a lot of things, but, at the moment, I’m most thankful that my back is feeling better!  It makes the day SO much better when I can bend and move without pain.

One of my favorite things…

is this time of the year.  I love it when the mornings and evenings are cool, but the afternoons warm up nicely. October has always been one of my favorite months.

I am wearing…

a blue/white checked nightgown (lazy morning)

I am creating…
some fall floral arrangements.  This arrangement actually serves a dual purpose.  In addition to being decorative, it lights the walkway at night.

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I am watching…

a few of the new fall shows on television.  So far, we’ve watched “Designated Survivor” and “Bull”.  I like “Designated Survivor” because I’m a fan of Keifer Sutherland.  I’m still deciding what I think about “Bull”, but an interesting fact about the show is that it was co-created by Dr. Phil McGraw.

I am hoping…

God will show us where our new church home is supposed to be.  We’ve been joining our son’s weekly service at a local assisted living home, and visiting around some. I’ve come to look forward to those sweet services at ‘the home’, and have developed a fondness in my heart for the residents we worship with each week.

I am learning…

to have more patience than I’ve had in my entire life…  Learning to wait on God.

In my kitchen…

I cooked ham, butterbeans, cheesy mashed potatoes, and peach cobbler for supper, last night.

In my garden…

Ed planted some cabbage, lettuce, carrots, and radishes, last week.  We will plant some mustard and turnip greens as soon as the ground dries out a little more.  After this week, our fall peas will be gone.  I should be glad, but, actually, I’ll be a little sad.

Shared Quote…
“All that I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen.”  Ralph Waldo Emerson

A moment from my day…

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the windmill and flower garden

Closing Notes:
I haven’t been able to sit for long periods of time, so I haven’t been on the computer much during the past week.  I’ve spent most of the past week moving from the chair to the couch to the bed, due to my aching bottom. I’m feeling much better now, and am so glad my surgery is behind me.  I’ll get the stitches removed tomorrow.

Many thanks to Peggy Hostetler for hosting Simple Woman’s Daybook.

 

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Published in: on October 4, 2016 at 10:19 am  Comments (6)  
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