I’m Still Standing…

Just when I thought I had rejoined the world of blogging–working in the garden plus new health issues caused me to take another hiatus.  I’m happy to say, the garden is now history and, once again, I’m feeling better–or at least I was before I began trying to write this post.  It seems WordPress has changed [more than a few things] during my absence, but I digress…

When Ed planted our garden, this year, I began to pray for God to bless us with a bountiful harvest so we could share it with others.  I’m here to tell you, God hears and answers prayers!  God blessed and we shared our veggies!  I remember one day, in particular, when Ed brought me one-too-many buckets of squash, I stopped him at the door.  I refused to let him bring them into my already crowded kitchen!  The veggie table was full, as was the refrigerator!  Fortunately, just down the road, others were more than happy to take those squash off Ed’s hands. We shared our veggies with family, friends, and with people we didn’t even know.

The vegetable table was always filled with something!

I don’t know why, but my health always seems to pick the worst possible times to go wonky.  About the time we were finishing up with canning green beans, (just before Memorial Day) I began to have an earache.  That stupid earache plagued me the entire summer!  After four trips to three different medical specialists, taking two different rounds of antibiotics, using two different kinds of ear drops, six weeks worth of Sudafed and Flonaise, and a whole lot of miserable days later, I’m finally feeling better!  I haven’t had an earache in three whole days.

In other news, Ed finally began to clean out his parents’ house back in May, with the help of our daughter. (It’s about time, his mom has been deceased for nearly seven years.)  Our daughter listed the furniture on Facebook and it sold quickly. Only Ed’s old piano, a swivel chair, and six kitchen chairs remain, along with all of the dishes in the kitchen cabinets…  Dishes are “my thing” and I’m not looking forward to going through those cabinets!  I’ll want to bring most of them home with me, and I have no more room!  To solve the dilemma of what to do with “stuff” we can’t bare to part with, we’ve ordered a storage house…  Is anybody else out there guilty of hanging onto “stuff”?

Saying “goodbye” to my old friend “Classy” after 19 years

Speaking of “stuff” we can’t bare to part with, I finally gave Ed permission (for the third time) to sell “Classy”, my 2001 black PT Cruiser.  That car was my all-time favorite vehicle, and I’d had it since March of 2001!  (I wanted that car so bad I actually went to the dealership, alone, to talk with a salesperson about buying it.)  I thought I wanted to keep “Classy” forever, but things change, and reality eventually sets in. We’d had “Classy” up for sale a couple of times during the past year or so, but had always ended up removing the “for sale” sign after a few days.  Somehow, it never felt right to sell her.  I began to pray about this, and God answered my prayer again.  Shortly after Ed put the sign on the car, for the third time, a woman came by ready to buy the car!  Not only was she ready to buy it, she seemed as passionate about the car as I had always been.  We sold the car to her, and I’ve had absolute peace about the sale. In fact, the other day, we saw her driving the car in town and I didn’t even feel bad!

In addition to dealing with a garden, relentless earaches, cleaning out a house, and selling a beloved car, Ed and I have also been trying to survive this era of Covid 19 and all of the craziness that is accompanying it!  Like many, we’ve been mostly housebound for the past four and a half months.

For us, shopping consists of using Wal-mart pickup service or an occasional trip to the neighborhood dollar store for milk or bread. Once or twice we’ve put on our masks and actually shopped for ourselves someplace other than Wal-mart.  It felt so liberating!  Of course, we’ve had to make a few doctor visits during this time, too, which were a bit unusual. (wearing masks, waiting in the car until called, etc.)

Our church closed in March, along with all of the others.  We learned how to enjoy Sunday School using Zoom, and Sunday services via Facebook.  Once our church reopened, after several weeks, we attended services a couple of times.  We discovered we didn’t really feel comfortable attending services with the virus still making the rounds, so we’ve continued watching from home.  We were glad we made that choice when the virus began to hit some of our area churches–ours included!  When will this virus ever end?

Something else I’m ready to see end is the nonsense we’ve been witnessing on the news over the past few weeks… I do believe our country has gone mad!  When did wearing a mask become such a controversial thing? When did it become “acceptable” to deface or destroy public property?  When did only certain lives matter?  These are definitely deeply disturbing times we’re living in…and on that note I’ll end this post!  I hope to write again, soon.


Published in: on July 10, 2020 at 5:03 pm  Comments (1)  
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A Birthday, A Root Canal, And A Cancelled Trip…

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve blogged here.  In fact, it’s been so long, the site actually made me sign in with my username and password!  But here I am, and the title of this post could easily sum up the past three weeks of my life!

Yes, I had another birthday.  My sixty-fourth, to be exact.  Way back in the days when I listened to the old Beatles song, When I’m Sixty-Four, I didn’t think much about ever being sixty-four, but here I am.  How did that happen?!

Although I hadn’t felt well for several days prior to my “sixty-fourth”, I actually felt pretty good on my birthday.  Early that morning, Ed and I threw our lawn chairs in the back of the van and headed for St. Simon’s Island!  All I really wanted was to spend the day lounging in the shade of my favorite oak tree, while enjoying the view.  God blessed me by giving me a “good day” and Ed made sure I got my birthday wish!

my birthday view

The day was as close to perfect as it could be.  A gentle breeze blew, there wasn’t a cloud in the sky, and there were no annoying people around.  In fact, there were very few people around at all!  When we got home, that evening, I even found a freshly baked pound cake waiting on my kitchen counter–courtesy of my daughter-in-law, Jennifer.  It was the perfect ending to a perfect day!

Two weeks after my birthday, I celebrated again with family.  Yes, I said, two weeks after.  That’s how long it took our family to coordinate schedules to celebrate mine and daughter-in-law, Jennifer’s, birthdays. (Her birthday is two days before mine, so we celebrate together) 


We celebrated our birthdays at the new home of our oldest son.  (This was their first ‘official’ get-together since moving in.)  We all celebrated with bar-b-que spare ribs and all the trimmings, plus cake/ice cream, and lots of gifts.  It was a nice evening, and we all had a big laugh when Jennifer opened one of her gifts–a witches broom!  Being the good sport she is, she immediately hopped on it and galloped around the room 🙂  (There’s a story behind this gift, but I won’t take time to explain today.)

Just a week after my official birthday, and a week before the family celebration, I experienced my first root canal.  Happy sixty-fourth to me!


I’d been dealing with this ‘bothersome’ tooth, since my last checkup, six months ago.  I’d mentioned this tooth to my dentist during that visit, but he suggested we leave it alone for as long as possible. When I went back for my regular cleaning,  x-rays finally showed trouble was brewing, and the dentist said it was time for a root canal.  Fun times!  The procedure was not fun, but wasn’t nearly as bad as I’d thought it would be.  In fact, the most painful part was paying the bill!!!

You see, way back in June, on a whim, I signed [Ed and me] up to take a bus trip to Key West during the first week of November.  If you’ve read my blog, you’ll know that visiting Key West is on my bucket list.  In fact, it’s the only thing on my bucket list!


So, I’ve faithfully saved money for the past three months, in anticipation of our upcoming trip.  Little did I know I was saving up for a root canal, instead!!!  I was actually planning to mail the large final payment for the trip on the day I found out I had to have the root canal and crown.  Cost of the root canal and crown?  The same price as the trip to Key West!  Long story made short, I tearfully cancelled our trip, three days later.

Yes, I could have put the root canal or the trip on our credit card, or even taken the money out of our savings, but I didn’t feel like either of those things was the right thing to do, at this time, because six birthdays are coming, plus Christmas, and yearly taxes will soon be due, as well.  Also, for some unknown reason, I’d already been having second thoughts about this trip, so I took the ‘unplanned expense’ as a ‘sign’ that maybe I should just cancel.

Perhaps there will be another travel opportunity sometime in the future.  Who knows?  In the meantime, I’ll keep dreaming of Key West–while wearing a new crown on a very old tooth!  Year sixty-four has certainly started out with a bang!


Published in: on September 19, 2018 at 9:35 am  Comments (6)  
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A New Year, A New Hodgepodge…


Happy New Year!  What better way to help get the year started than with The Hodgepodge?!  As always, many thanks to our gracious hostess, Joyce, for keeping things going.  Now, here are today’s questions:

1. Share one favorite moment/memory from your Christmas holiday.

My favorite moment/memory from this Christmas was the candlelight church service that Ed and I attended on Christmas Eve.  It was our first time attending a candlelight Christmas Eve service, and our oldest son brought the message. Good moments, good memories.

2. What was the best thing you ate over the holidays? Was it homemade or store-bought? If it was homemade did you make it?

I ate so many good things, it’s hard to choose just one–and my waist is showing it, too!!!  I’ll choose “fruitcake cookies” as my answer, though.  We ate some at a get-together that we attended, and those were some of the best fruitcake cookies I’ve ever eaten.  They were homemade by a friend, and she was kind enough to send some home with us, too.

3. What was one of the most beautiful things you saw over the holidays?

I’ll say the Christmas light displays Ed and I visited, shortly before Christmas.  We noticed there just weren’t many light displays, this year, but we found three families who went “all out” and had filled their yards with all kinds of Christmas decorations.  We thoroughly enjoyed looking at their displays, and really appreciated their efforts.

4. What does fresh start mean to you?

A fresh start means putting the past behind you, and starting all over, like when you move from one place to another, or when you retire.

5. On a scale of 1-10 (with 10 being very positive and 1 being not so great) how would you rate 2016 in terms of personal achievement and well-being? Explain.

If I compare 2016 to our nightmare year of 2015, I’d have to give it a “10”, but since Ed and I did have a couple of issues to deal with during the year, I’m going to give 2016 an “8”.   2016 could’ve been better, but we know it could’ve been a whole lot worse, too!

6. Every January 1st since 1976 Lake Superior University has published a list of words they’d like to see banished from the Queen’s English. Words may be banished due to misuse, overuse, or just general uselessness. Go here to read more about how the words were chosen or, if you’re like me, to find out what in the world the word or phrase even means or the context in which it’s used. There were quite a few on this year’s list I’d never heard before.

Here’s the 2017 list of banished words-

You, Sir-focus-Bete Noire-Town Hall Meeting-Post Truth-guesstimate-831-historic-manicured-echo chamber-on fleek-bigly-ghost-Dadbod-listicle-get your dander up-selfie drone-frankenfruit-disruption

Which word on the list would you most like to see banished in 2017? What word or phrase would you add to the list?

There were quite a few  words and phrases I’m not familiar with either.  I think I’d most like to banish the phrase “Town Hall Meeting” simply because it makes me think of politics–and I’m not ready to think about politics again!  I’d like to see the word “selfie” banished, too, as well as “selfies” themselves!  Will this fad ever die?

 7. Large or small, light or deep, share with us one goal you have for the new year.

My goal for 2017 is to continue my spiritual growth.  I received a new Bible for Christmas and I plan to spend a lot of time with it.


A few ‘storm clouds’ [of life] have been gathering around Ed and me during the past few weeks.  I’m not at liberty to share details, but I will tell you these ‘clouds’ involve medical issues, procedures, and waiting for results.  Not the way we’d hoped to begin our new year, but we’ll be okay.

Also, our daughter-in-law, Jennifer, lost her granddaddy on January 2, the day after his birthday.  He had been hospitalized the entire month of December, and was finally sent home, under hospice care, on Christmas Eve. As you can imagine, the holidays have been bittersweet for Jennifer and her family.  They have been, and will be, in my thoughts and prayers.


Published in: on January 4, 2017 at 8:51 am  Comments (13)  
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This-N-That On Tuesday…

I’m posting my usual ‘Monday post’ on Tuesday because I simply couldn’t motivate myself to write anything yesterday.  Life continues to throw curve balls at me, and sometimes it just gets to be a bit too much.  Yesterday was one of those days…

The weekend was a busy one.  Our oldest son turned 33 on May 10–Mother’s Day.


the birthday boy

Our entire family (almost) celebrated his birthday with him on Saturday night.  His wife made delicious pulled pork for supper, and finished the meal off with her delicious ‘Hershey Bar Cake’.  I can’t believe 33 years have passed since our son entered this world–just four hours after Mother’s Day of 1982 ended.

Of course, the Saturday night celebration was followed, on Sunday, by Mother’s Day.  I’d like to say it was a ‘great’ Mother’s Day, but instead I’ll just have to say it was a ‘different’ Mother’s Day.  We went through the motions of celebrating, as usual.  I spent time with my daughter and both of my sons, at different points throughout the day.  I received several lovely gifts, some cards (and a letter), and Ed took care of making breakfast and lunch.  I felt very loved and appreciated, but a cloud loomed over our celebrations–and I didn’t take one single picture.

The damper on the celebrations was the fact that our son-in-law, of almost 14 years, was not with us.  He and our daughter are in the midst of some marital woes, and are currently spending some time apart.  Life threw us this curve ball about a week ago, and we’re still reeling from it.  If you  know me, you know how I feel about family and marriage, so I’m definitely hoping and praying the two of them will be able to back up, regroup, and make things right again.  In the meantime, it’s tough for all.

Life threw, yet another, curve ball when our son helped us install a moisture meter (I think the correct term is humidistat) under our house over the weekend.  Even after adding insulation and a moisture barrier, the humidity level under our house was still over 80%!  I wanted to cry.  For the moment, we’ve added a fan to the equation, which seems to help some.  In the meantime, we’re figuring out our next course of action.

I’m still having some back issues, but continue to put off going to the doctor because of the medical bills I know it will cause. Most of the time my back feels okay, but my left leg continues to be a problem.  Sometimes my leg goes to sleep if I sit or lie down in a certain position, and sometimes it will begin to have what can only be described as spasms when I walk. It often feels ‘heavy’.  For now, I’ll continue my ‘wait and see’ approach. My daddy had chronic back issues, as does my older brother.  I’m pretty sure it’s genetic.

Ed continues taking care of the garden alone.  I am finally able to walk out there each day, but that’s pretty much all I can do, at the moment.

100_5066Ed (far left) hoeing alone

2015 is proving to be a challenge, in gardening, for us.  The ground is either too wet or it’s too dry.  Then there’s the challenge of fighting off insects, rabbits, and deer. Our latest curve ball, regarding the garden, happened yesterday, when the tire of the tiller blew up!   Ed just bought a new tube for that same tire, last week.  Now he’ll have to buy the whole tire.  It’s always something!


a few garden-fresh veggies

On a happier note, so far we’ve enjoyed fresh squash, carrots, cabbage, and garden peas, and a few blueberries from our garden.  The hens have been enjoying fresh lettuce from the garden, each day.  We expect to have fresh potatoes and onions in a few more days, and, hopefully, some green beans before too much longer.

During these days of our trials and tribulations, I have to constantly remind myself, Kathy, things could always be worse.  God showed me this, yesterday, when a particular incident occurred. I’d sent Ed to town to run an errand for me.  He’d only been gone a few minutes when the phone rang.  It was Ed, on the other in of the line, saying, “It’s me.”  He went on to tell me that he’d come upon a bad wreck, on the way to town, involving a large tanker and a pickup.  There were two Life Star helicopters on the scene.  Ed was calling to let me know he wasn’t involved in the accident, in case I heard about it before he returned.  After I hung up, I immediately thanked God that Ed hadn’t left for town a few minutes earlier.  Yes, things could always be worse–but I’m sure hoping they’ll be better soon.




Published in: on May 12, 2015 at 10:37 am  Comments (5)  
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Friday Fragments…

Half-Past Kissin' Time

What a short week it’s been in our neck of the woods!  Ed and I have barely had time to catch our breath.  Early mornings have found me hard at work in the yard, then Ed has been joining me in the late afternoons after he got off from work.  Things are looking better with each passing day.

We’ve finally been getting a break from the daily rain showers that plagued us for nearly two months.  It’s only rained here once this week.  I hope the rain continues to miss us throughout the weekend because, if it does, we’re getting concrete poured under our carport on Monday.  I’m excited about that!  Ed built the storage house, with an attached carport about three or four years ago, but we weren’t able to get a floor poured until now.  Rain, please stay away!

Lawnmower problems plagued us, all of last week, after Ed accidentally ran over the protective netting covering my blueberry bush.  On Friday evening, he finally pinpointed the problem and got the mower running again.  Meanwhile, our son-in-law’s push mower died, too!  Our riding lawnmower worked double-time getting everyone’s grass mowed, once it was up and running!  Meanwhile,  Ed and I decided to purchase a new mower while the ‘end of the season’ sales are still going on, then sell our old riding mower to our daughter and SIL.  The new mower should be arriving on Monday.

The television antenna that I ordered, last week, arrived on Tuesday.  It’s an outside antenna, but it’s so tiny!  Not at all like the huge antennas of yesteryear.  Ed hasn’t had a chance to properly install it yet, so, at the moment, it’s sitting on a corner table in the living room!  It works like a charm, even from there!  We were finally able to watch Big Brother again on Wednesday and Thursday nights.  Life is good again!  Now, when the time is right, we can kiss Dish Network, and their ridiculous fees, goodbye…

Ed lost his cellphone about three weeks ago.  He doesn’t have any idea what happened to it.  He looked for it everywhere he could think of, but no luck finding it.  Finally, after a couple of weeks, he decided to just buy another Tracfone and port his number/minutes over to the new phone.  When he did, he discovered that 700 of his minutes were gone!  I think we can safely assume someone stole his phone, and have been enjoying his minutes!  Either that, or Tracfone cheated Ed out of some of his minutes.

I really liked Ed’s new cellphone (another flip phone) because it actually gets a signal and will work in our home, unlike most cell phones.  We went back to the store and bought another Tracfone just like Ed’s.  After TWO DAYS, and MUCH AGGRAVATION, Ed finally got my number and minutes ported over!  By then, Ed was threatening to buy a ticket to India, where, apparently, Tracphone’s unhelpful, customer service representatives are located!!!  What an experience!

I spent yesterday visiting with my friend, Diane, who lives about an hour away from me.  After three failed attempts, we finally had a beach trip planned.  As we were loading up her car to go, it began to sprinkle rain!  We went ahead and drove toward the beach, but the rain got harder!  She continued to drive.  Eventually, we ran out of the rain, and by the time we arrived at the beach, the sun was shinning and there wasn’t a cloud in the sky!  It was so hot and sunny, we sat under the pier.  However, on the way back home, we ran into one of the worst thunder storms I’ve ever been caught in!  It rained so hard we could barely see the road, and this continued for over thirty minutes!  What an experience, but we finally got our beach trip!

It’s official, I’m getting senile!  I was so tired and rattled last night that I took my medication twice!  I remembered I’d already taken it, about halfway through taking the second round!  Fortunately, I’m still here, and I didn’t get sick during the night.  Hopefully, all is well!  Next time I see that the slot in my ‘pill reminder’ is empty, I will assume that I’ve already taken the medication, whether I remember taking it or not!

That’s about it for me, and this session of Friday Fragments.  I’m linking up with other ‘fraggers’ at Half-Past Kissin’ Time.

We have a busy weekend planned, but I’m hoping it will be a good one!  I hope yours is a good one, as well.  See ya’ on Monday!

Published in: on August 9, 2013 at 9:00 am  Comments (8)  
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Friday Fragments…

Unknown Mami

It’s 6:30 in the morning, and here I sit, unable to sleep any longer!  When I used to work, I dreamed of the days when I’d no longer have to get up early.  It never occurred to me that I would still be getting up early because I wouldn’t be able to sleep!  Oh the joys of growing old…  Since I’m awake, I think I’ll take this opportunity to join in a little Friday Fun with Unknown Mami and the gang!

This week, Ed and I have worked diligently on getting ‘things’ back to normal around the house.  We’ve raked up tree roots, limbs, pine straw, and stump shavings.  We’ve filled in holes and ruts left by falling trees and heavy machinery.  We’ve worked to re-level the areas where grass used to be, and Ed even planted some grass seed.  A lot of work remains to be done, but slowly, but surely, we’re getting there.  In six months, we’ll probably still be trying to ‘get there’!

It continues to rain here almost every day!  Just about the time I think we’re going to dry out, it rains again!  Some days it rains a lot, other days it rains a little.  We’ve just about given up any hope of planting a fall garden.  I have a few cabbage and lettuce plants growing on the front porch.  If I don’t get to plant them in the garden, I’ll just transplant them to larger pots.  It’s been so wet, we haven’t even been able to mow down the rest of the summer garden yet!

Whenever it rains on a regular basis, our grass grows like crazy!  Although we don’t have a lot of grass left in our yard, at the moment, we still have plenty of grass to mow in other areas.  Wouldn’t you know, our riding lawn mower picked this year to go on the blink?  Usually, Ed can fix most things mechanical, but, so far, he’s failed to get the lawn mower running.  At the moment, we’re left with only a very old push mower and a new weed eater.  I guess we know what Ed will be doing this weekend!

Public school started back here on Thursday.  What a short summer it turned out to be!  Neither of our grandchildren are attending public school this year, so the start date didn’t affect our family.  One grandchild is attending a Pre-K program that doesn’t begin until later, while the other is being home schooled for First Grade.  Neither grandchild will have to worry about going to school for another whole month.  Lucky them, because it’s just too hot to ride on non-air conditioned buses right now!

I’m just a little bit aggravated with Dish Network!  As of midnight, on August 1, we no longer get our local CBS channel.  Something broke down with negotiations and the two were not able to reach an agreement for the coming year.  So right in the middle of this season’s “Big Brother”, we’ve lost the channel it comes on, and right in the middle of the new series “Under the Dome”, I can’t see what’s going to happen next!  Ed called Dish to complain, and was told they’re still negotiating.  In the meantime, they gave us a small credit to our bill for the inconvenience.  I ordered a television antenna yesterday.  Until the antenna comes or negotiations get settled, I guess I’m stuck watching the CBS episodes on the laptop 😦

Two of our grown children, who are also our neighbors, and their families, are headed off to the beach this weekend.  Both are going to a large water park on Jeckyl Island.  I’m really feeling the need for a beach trip of my own, but not the water park!  I’m hoping to go somewhere soon, ’cause this old gal sure could use some rest and relaxation instead of work and worry!  On that note, I’m going to end this post!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Published in: on August 2, 2013 at 7:33 am  Comments (7)  
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The Saga Of Our Tall Georgia Pines…


a peaceful morning in the pines

Until last week, our home used to be nestled among lots of tall Georgia pine trees. The trees were a gift to me from my father-in-law, over twenty years ago.  He decided to let his cow pasture (located next-door to our former house) grow up in volunteer pine trees, after I became upset while he was having his timber cut down.  Little did any of us know that, one day, Ed and I would build a new home among those volunteer pines.

When we built the first part of our new house, those volunteer pines were still relatively small.  We liked living among the trees, it gave us the illusion of being in the mountains. The years flew by, and before we knew it, many of our trees had become very tall (about 65 feet), and many had begun leaning in toward our home.  A new reality began to set in.

Whenever the wind blew hard, the tops of the pine trees would bang together, and it was quite scary!  Limbs and pine straw were constantly falling on the ground, and pine tar was usually everywhere.  It didn’t help knowing that, several years ago, Ed’s aunt was actually struck and killed by a falling pine limb!

May 2012 016

after last summer’s storm

Last summer, we received quite a scare when, during a storm, three of those pines came tumbling down!  All three falling trees brushed either our house or Ed’s storage house, but fortunately, the damage was minimal.  Ed and I decided, as soon as we were financially able, most of the trees had to go!  The day finally came.

Early last week, Ed contacted a local tree trimmer that I’d read about in the weekly newspaper, when his wife was featured as ‘cook of the week’.  Tim came out to the house the same day Ed called him.  He gave us what we considered to be an excellent estimate, and we made a deal to have twenty-seven trees cut.  Within two days (on Friday), Tim and his crew were at our house ready to begin cutting our trees.  Rain had actually missed us for two days, so they decided to go for it!  Little did any of us know that we’d get a flash flood over the weekend!

That Friday morning, I went outside and took some photographs before the men arrived.  It was cool and quiet, and for a moment, I actually had second thoughts about letting the trees go…


just a few of our pines before they were cut

All day, on Friday, I watched as the men began cutting our pine trees.  We’d contracted to have twenty-seven pines cut, but by noon, on Saturday, the number to be cut had nearly doubled.  Cutting some trees, exposed other diseased or faulty trees, and some trees were just in the way of getting other trees removed.  Twenty-seven trees quickly turned into forty-something.  I watched as most of our lawn soon became non-existent, thanks to the heavy machinery traveling back and forth over it.

Ed and I had mixed feelings about having the trees cut.  We really hated to see them go, but, at the same time, we knew it was for the best.  I’d spent several sleepless nights during wind storms, after those three trees fell so close to our house.  Still it was hard…

After the first day of cutting,  I counted the rings on one of the larger stumps remaining in the yard.  It had eighteen rings, one for each year of its life.  One tree, located over beside our carport, was even larger, so I’m guessing it was even older.  I didn’t get a chance to count its rings before the stump was ground up.


You know, life is funny sometimes.  Little did Ed and I know, twenty-two years ago, when my father-in-law gave us the gift of trees, we’d eventually have to pay to have most of them cut down.  It’s sort of ironic, don’t you think?   (to be continued…)

Published in: on July 30, 2013 at 7:19 am  Comments (4)  
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Sometimes Life Just Sucks…

Just two short years ago Brad and Jennifer became a couple.  I still remember the night of their first date when Brad called from the movies to ask us some trivial question about something the two of them had been discussing on their date…Brad’s funny that way.  It was mid-October of 2009.

first Christmas together

Our family met Jennifer for the first time on the night of our Halloween party.  Yes, Jennifer met her future in-laws while we were dressed as bottles of ketchup and mustard–and yet she married Brad anyway!  Go figure…

Jennifer was finishing up her training to become a registered nurse back then, and I recall there was some controversy about an exit exam or something like that.  I don’t recall all of the details, but I do recall that Jennifer’s mama went to the university and butted heads with the officials there!  Whatever she said worked, and the problem got solved.  Hell hath no fury like a mom whose child has been wronged!

Brad and Jennifer spent their first Christmas as a couple, enjoying the holidays with both sets of parents.  Nobody knew then that  it would be the last Christmas for Jennifer’s mom.

Early in the following year, Jennifer’s mom suffered some kind of “spell” and ended up in the hospital.  In retrospect, her family now believes her heart had stopped beating while she slept, but somehow the heart managed to jump start itself again.  Denise spent several days in the hospital, having tests run, but was later discharged without any clear answers as to what happened or why.

In the meantime, Jennifer had her yearly pap smear done, only to discover that she had suspicious cells present.  She underwent a procedure,  in hopes that it would remove all of cancerous cells, but the cells were too extensive, and surgery would need to be performed.  Jennifer’s doctor referred her to an oncologist who referred her to another doctor who specializes in a new type of cervical cancer surgery.  Jennifer was only 23 at this time.

While Jennifer was waiting for her new, experimental cervical surgery to be scheduled and performed, her mother unexpectedly passed away in July of 2010.  Sometime during the wee hours of the morning, while she slept, Denise’s heart stopped beating again, refusing to restart this time.  She passed away on the day our entire family, including Brad and Jennifer, was planning to leave on vacation.

Jennifer and her mom...

In September of 2010, Jennifer traveled seven hours to North Carolina to have her special cervical cancer surgery.  The surgery was successful.  All cancer was removed.  Although, Jennifer lost her cervix, she was able to retain her ovaries and uterus due to this new procedure.  She had hopes of one day conceiving a child, although a pregnancy would be high risk due to her cervical surgery.

A couple of months after the surgery, Jennifer was rushed to the hospital with high fever and pain in her side.  She was admitted to the hospital and further tests showed an inflamed appendix plus a large abscess in her abdomen.  Abdominal surgery didn’t appear to be a viable option due to so much infection in the abdominal cavity(risk of spreading), so a drain was surgically inserted from Jennifer’s backside.  However, the drain was only left in place a day or so, then removed.  A tragic mistake that would come back to haunt Jennifer.

Jennifer was treated with mega doses of antibiotics and scheduled to see a surgeon at a later date about removal of her appendix.  A few weeks later, Jennifer spoke with a surgeon, who decided to leave her appendix alone.  Another decision that probably played a part in Jennifer’s future outcome.

Brad and Jennifer got married at the end of June, but several other things have happened along the way.  Over the past few months, since the initial flare up of her appendix, Jennifer has made several doctor visits–including  two more trips to the emergency room.  All of these events have  culminated in some distressing news for Jennifer.  On Tuesday of next week, Jennifer is scheduled to have more surgery to eliminate her problems.

Apparently, the infection from Jennifer’s appendix formed an abscess, that has remained inside of her abdominal cavity, and destroyed her right ovary, as well as both of her Fallopian tubes.  All of this damage will have to be surgically removed, along with the appendix–and anything else that the surgeon deems necessary once he gets a look inside.  This was not the outcome we were all hoping for two short years ago.

Life is funny.  We don’t always get what we want.  I try not to question God because I know that all things work together for good, but it doesn’t make some days any easier.  Sometimes life just plain sucks, and there have been plenty of those times for Jennifer during the past two years.

I admire Jennifer for her tenacity and ability to carry on.  Despite all of the things she’s endured during the past two years, she’s managed to plan a wedding, and hold down a nursing job with a grueling schedule.  It’s not unusual for her to pull 13  hour shifts, then make the drive home, which takes nearly 90 minutes.  She spends long days taking care of others, sometimes when she needs taking care of, as well.

I’m seeking your prayers on behalf of Jennifer,  as she prepares to undergo yet another surgery.  Life just seems so unfair sometimes, but we do what we must.

In addition to her surgery next week, Jennifer is dealing with another life-changing situation, as well.  Next month her daddy will be getting re-married.  This will be an adjustment for Jennifer’s entire family, but especially for Jennifer.  Life goes on, but sometimes it’s just difficult.  Jennifer had to pack up her mom’s things  last week.  Not an easy thing for her to do, I am sure.

If you send up prayers for Jennifer, please don’t forget about our son, Brad, too.  Sometimes it’s equally as tough on the spouse of the one who’s going through the trials of life…especially when there are so many.

Published in: on October 13, 2011 at 8:47 am  Comments (11)  
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So Many Answered Prayers…

Fifty years ago found my brother and me growing up in a less than desireable home environment.  Our parents were struggling  with a multitude of problems brought on by alcohol abuse.  I think back to those times, and I know that scores of prayers must’ve been sent up on behalf of my parents, my brother, and me.  I also know that many of those prayers were answered.  We both grew up to be healthy, happy individuals with no desire to partake in alcohol.  Our parents even  took a six-year hiatus from drinking, and got their lives somewhat in order, not an easy task since they’d  lost nearly everything that they owned.

I remember back to the late sixties, when my parents were sober and doing good, I was halfway through school, and  my brother was happily married.  Unfortunately the Vietnam War was going on.  Like so many others during that time, my brother was drafted to go and fight in the war.  He served his time in the army and got sent to Vietnam, but returned safely and unharmed to his loving wife…more answered prayers!

By the late eighties my parents health had declined rapidly.  The years of alcohol abuse and prescription medication abuse finally took its toll.  They were in their late 50’s at the time.  I was 35 years old, happily married, and had three children aged 3, 6, and 9.  Suddenly I found myself being forced to deal with both of my parents being hospitalized– for four long months. 

My father was in ICU for over 2 months and wasn’t expected to live.  When he beat the odds and survived, he had to go through rehab.  My mother had a complete mental breakdown, and was in the mental ward the entire 4 months.  The hospital was a 125 mile round trip drive from my house.   I can honestly say those were the most difficult and trying months of my entire life.  I had to try to be everything to everyone and there were times when I didn’t know how much more I could endure…then I would pick myself up and go again.  I know that many, many prayers went up for me, my family, and my parents during those months, and they were answered. 

I believe because of those answered prayers, I never had an accident or any car trouble on those many trips driving alone to the hospital–once I drove home in the middle of the night after being up for two days and nights.  Usually,  I managed to drive to and from the hospital, visit both parents, and still be home when the children arrived home from school.  My parents survived, but were forced to enter a nursing home facility at the end of four months.  It was not what they preferred, but for the first time in my life, I didn’t have to worry about them.  I knew they’d be taken care of, and wouldn’t have access to things that weren’t good for their health.  So many answered prayers…

Ten years later, both of my parents were deceased, two of our children had graduated from high school, and the last one was just three years away from graduation.  Life was fairly calm…just before the next storm when I discovered that I had two masses on my ovary.  I wasn’t overly concerned–at first.  That was before I had a CA 125 test that came back elevated(possible indicator of cancer).  Suddenly my life was turned upside down again, as I faced my own mortality.  Many prayers went up again…and once again God heard and answered.  The test was wrong!  My ovarian masses weren’t cancer, but were by-products of a massive case of endometriosis.  Not only were the masses not malignant, but the hysterectomy cured many of the health issues that I’d suffered from for several years!  God answers prayers!

Flash forward six more years…our daughter had been married for 5 years, and  desperately wanted to be a mother.  After a year of trying, Brandy finally became pregnant–just before a scheduled appointment to a fertility specialist!  The pregnancy wasn’t an easy one though.  It was nine long months of ups and downs, tears and prayers, bed rest and hospitalizations.  Almost anything that could go wrong, did go wrong–and it was like that for the entire pregnancy and delivery!  Despite all of the ups and downs, trials and tribulations, God answered our prayers when little Madison Elizabeth was born healthy.

 I’m so grateful for all of those answered prayers–and for the ones who prayed those prayers.  In the midst of all of the mentioned situations, I always felt God’s strength and presence.  Although I didn’t know how each situation would turn out, I had faith that God would see us though, and He did. 

The theme of this week’s blog hop is “Answered Prayers”.  Join us with an uplifting story of a time in your life when prayers were answered.  Just click on the link below to join in or to read other stories in this blog hop.  Thanks so much for stopping by…

MckLinky Blog Hop

Click here to enter your link in the blog hop and view the entire list of entered links…

Published in: on March 22, 2010 at 7:56 pm  Comments (7)  
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