Monday, August 29, 2011

Monday Continues...

Another hot day and I'm so glad to be indoors.  Today has been another full day of workmen in and out of the house.  Right now the A/C man is knocking around in the attic, outside and in the garage.  The casita bedroom is not cooling off quite like it is supposed to.  Earlier this morning the drainage repair guys were here working out in our courtyard.  Cabinet guys, warranty guy, TV installation guy and a couple of others which I cannot remember right now will be here this week.  Meanwhile the boxes are diminishing and things continue to come together.  I am trying to do some actual cleaning today since that has been hit and miss.  Most of our time is spent getting things organized and put away.  Or make that re-organized.  Saturday, we took another big load over to Katy Christian Ministries and I already have two more boxes ready to roll.  On Saturday, I was able to get into the casita bedroom and get some work done in there.  And since the desk came on Friday, I've been able to get things organized in the desk.  A huge accomplishment has been working through boxes that have random, who knows what to do with this stuff, kind of things. 

After church yesterday, we stopped at Lowe's and finally got the 8' ladder we need to change out A/C filters and change light bulbs.  Of course the ladder is safely stored away in the garage.  Filter changing can wait for another day. 

I continue to make gradual steps towards really cooking dinner.  In fact, I was going to fix dinner tonight but since I had to stay home and wait for all these people, I haven't been able to get out to pick up some critical ingredients.  So maybe dinner will be cooked tomorrow.  It's feeling like a go out or take out kind of night. 

Thursday, August 25, 2011

An Overcast Day with Some Lingering Rain...I Love It!

It actually rained here last night.  There was a pretty good show going on in the skies over Houston.  Seems like a very long time since I've last seen lightning and the rain.  Well, it was actually kind of interesting driving home from choir in it.  I noticed a text from Roy on my out to the car that we didn't have power.  In fact none of CR had power.  Thankfully, I had thought to put the flashlights in a place where they could be found easily.  Before the lights went out he had been working in the garage putting all the Christmas stuff up in the attic.  I was dreading a hot home but the lights came on before I even got to the Beltway.  We lost power again sometime after 11:00 but it wasn't for very long. 

Without power...the one thought that kept running through my mind, thank you Lord that we put the 9 volt battery into the sprinkler system box.  Believe me, I cannot tell you too much of what the guy said to me about programming the thing, alternating days, overriding the system and our seven zones, but I did hear and remember...get a battery so you don't have to reprogram the thing.  Done and done.  Actually, the wrong one of us received the how to's.  Thankfully, there is a booklet that came with the system and Roy can read it in all his spare time. 

My trips to Pottery Barn seem to bring rain.  I went to PB two days in a row this week, so maybe that helped the rain come.  PB is a strange land.  It is not particularly a joy to shop in their stores, although I like so much of what they offer.  You never know what you can pick up and take to the counter or what has to be called in from the back.  It doesn't seem as if the two stores want to accommodate the customer as much as they want to beat the window treatments off of each other.  At the River Oaks store, I purchased a lamp that had to be delivered to the store resulting in another trip into Houston to pick it up.  They had it in stock at the Town and Country store and at first they were going to make me take the claim ticket back to the RO store for credit.  Finally, the clerk relented on that diatribe and actually called the store and did it over the phone.  Gee...  I ordered my last piece of furniture from them yesterday, a small couch for the bedroom.  Think I will start to look elsewhere for anything we need for the rest of the house. 

Fact- from our home to Town and Country 20 minutes.  From Walgreen's on Chimney Rock to First Baptist-35 minutes.  Time mapping is not my best thing but I thought I'd given myself plenty of time to do the PB thing, eat dinner and pick up medicine from Walgreen's and still be at church in time to take in a little bit of Dena's series, God's Story for Your Life.  Seems, I was sadly mistaken by not taking in account a police action, 5 o'clock traffic and the like.  Came in a little late but was blessed by what I heard.  Of course I couldn't stay for the whole thing because of choir.  So here's a little plug, if you are wondering what your purpose is, God's story for your life is an awesome study.  Dena is one of the best teachers and I'm not saying that because we are good friends.  6:00 pm in room 252 on Wednesdays at HFBC.

There is still much to be done around here but at a stand still until the desk is delivered and my DIY project is finished.  Think that it needs one more coat of white gloss and it should be done.  Until then...there is always more to put up and maybe clean...  Still have my record going of not using my oven or cook top.  Although I now know how to set the clocks on the oven and microwave. 

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Second Day Back at School...or in Houston

Too bad we don't have any little boys in our lives because our house is big truck/construction central today.  The sprinkler guys are working in the yard laying pipe and the lot behind us is being prepared for the foundation to be poured.  Not only those two things but there's some kind of big cable laying machine running the length of our fence.  It can't be anymore than five inches away from the fence line.  Buddy is rather intrigued by the whole thing and I tried to take a picture of all that machinery but the glare from the sun is too much.  Lots of roaring of engines surrounding me today. 

To celebrate the second day of back to school I went into Houston.  It really wasn't something I was planning to do, but Roy sent an email telling me he had left his Blackberry and cell phone at home.  Very unlike him to do that, but he was so excited to try his new way to 99 that in all the hurry and scurry of the moment, he walked out the door without them.  So, I volunteered to bring his Blackberry to him downtown.  He said not until after 11 and I thought, for sure without a doubt.  Who was he mistaking me for, the early bird?  A type A personality.  Actually, I have been getting up earlier than I did at the condo.  I can now sing Holy, Holy Holy with the real words.  If we sing that song at church, I have to change the words so that I'm not singing a lie.  "Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God Almighty. Early MID morning my song shall rise to Thee." True words are early in the morning...but that doesn't happen so much so early mid morning seems to fit the bill. leave the house around 9, actuality of exit...9:30ish.  Dropped off the mail and headed into H-town.  Stopped at the condos to pick up a package that had been delivered, stopped at the bank, took some stuff back to the Nord, got organized at the Container Store, and got some great things on sale at Pottery Barn.  (Not seen a rain cloud though)  Next stop, downtown to give Roy his Blackberry.  Then I went to Lowe's and Michael's.  Hit the freeway and stopped in at Home Goods and picked up a hamburger at Mickey D's (no complicated order this time) on my way home.  Happy second day of school to me.  Interesting that every where I went I saw more moms with toddlers out and about.  They probably needed yesterday to recoup.  Well, I didn't see any downtown but you know what I mean. 

In true bloggy, DIY style, I began a project last night.  In true no attention span style, I forgot to take a before picture of my project.  Anyway, I am painting a four shelve wall hangy thing.  So steeped in craft talk.  It is dark brown.  I prepared the thingy, primed it and did a coat of gloss white on it.  Apparently, one can is not enough...but so I thought.  So I went to Michael's and they had two cans left.  Score, it was on sale.  Extra score, ran into Wanda Jean there.  So maybe I will complete my project tonight.  It is just too dang hot to work on it during the day.  So maybe I should take a mid project picture and then one when the job is complete.  Yesterday, considerable time was spent in the casita bedroom because once everything in there is set up, the boxes in the house will diminish. 

My quiet time reading was in II Kings this morning.  Nothing like some evil kings to get one riled up and going in the morning.  So thankful Judah at least had some good kings intermixed with the bad ones. 

Maybe tonight Roy will finish our courtyard patio furniture project.  There's not much left to do on it but the plastic straps holding stuff together might be nice to remove.  It is sometimes overwhelming to think of the things we have left to do.  This evening we can check sprinkler system off the list.  Have my window treatments for the living room and breakfast nook ordered.  Not to fear designer friends, I had professional help for this. I still think these dark blinds look good and all my non professional designer friends do to...the designer types, just give me a weak little smile and kind of have that there, there, you didn't know any better did you...bless your heart look on their face. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

First Day Back to School...It Really Doesn't Affect Us Though

First day of school so I took this opportunity to run to the grocery store.  I went back to HEB because I liked it better than the Kroger.  Little did I know that HEB could and will fill the deep shoes of the play grocery store.  I found out this morning HEB carries the rosemary ham that I found at Rice several weeks ago.  Score!   This morning I tried to do some real grocery shopping, like stuff more for meals than snacks.  It has been so long since I have cooked any type of thing, my mind is blank.  Roy suggested Sloppy Joe's and meatloaf.  Two things that are very do-able.  I am more of a winter time cook, tortilla soup, roast, chili, and taco soup.  Anyway, I made a dent into buying staples and the like. 

We went with Bill and Peggy to see "I Heard That" in Galveston.  It is a play written by the two guys that have done all the Tuna productions.  The larger guy was very limited in his role(s) so they added three other actors to fill out the show.  It was funny, had good lines, but it wasn't Tuna funny.  We ate dinner at Willie G's beforehand.  Love their gumbo.

I've been working some in the casita bedroom.  It has a long way to go, but bit by bit it will all get done.  When Roy and I were at Home Goods on Saturday, I noticed a couple of round lumbar type pillows that are used on daybeds.  Just the inserts at PB and other places are out of this world but  found a couple for $9.99 that will fit into the pillow covers I bought.  So a return trip to Home Goods to pick them up looks in order.  Not doing too much in the casita bedroom until the TV is installed.  We are just using the little 19" one we have and maybe will get something different when it breaks. 

There are a couple more things on my list for today and then I'm calling it quits for the day.  With so much to do, I haven't really had time to just sit back, relax and read.  Think that is coming sometime very near in the future. 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Quiet on a Saturday Morning

It's an early morning here on the prairie, but not as early as yesterdays.  We know our security system works so that is good news.  Roy left for the office sometime before 6:00 in the am.  I thought I heard a different beep from opening and closing the door when he left but didn't really think too much of it.  A few minutes later Roy is calling letting me know he thinks he might have accidentally tripped the alarm but not to worry, he caught his mistake in time.  Another 10 minutes later my cell phone rings.  The call was from a number I didn't recognize and almost didn't answer it, but I thought what if it is Bassett or from the workmen that are supposed to show up today.  It was the security company letting me know that the police were on their way.  Roy had pushed the panic button.  I told her everything was fine but she couldn't call off the police until I gave her the "safe" word.  Safe word?  There's a safe word?  Roy didn't tell me a safe word.  So while the security company held, I called Roy.  No answer...  I said is the safe word numbers?  Of course I was missing the obvious, safe WORD.  Finally, Roy answers.  I ask him for the safe word and he doesn't have nary a clue what I am talking about.  Then he remembers and I was able to tell the security company.  She said she would try to cancel the call with the Po Po.  So, I did what any normal person would do, I got up and waited for the Po Po to arrive.  I couldn't find my summer robe so I had to put on my winter one...heavy...yet soft, but I was sweating bullets.  Surely if the Po Po came a knocking at my door, they would suspect something because I was sweating like a big dog.  After 30 minutes I realized their call had been cancelled.  I was free to go on about my day.  My day that started way too early.  Too bad because it was one of Buddy's quieter mornings. 

Roy spent most of his day at the condo waiting on Salvation Army to come pick up furniture.  He got the lady lined up who is going to do the final clean up and he got boxes ready to bring home more stuff left behind.  He actually brought home dishes and frozen food so that's not too bad.  I was dreading the sight of more boxes.  It has been a fairly successful week getting boxes unpacked.  Thursday Pottery Barn delivered furniture.  We will have to wait on doing any final arranging in the casita bedroom until the TV is hung on the wall.  Everything looks nice in there, the day bed and the project table.  The console looks awesome in the living room.  Bassett delivered the second couch for the living room yesterday.  The only thing left, that is for now, is the desk we ordered. 

Last night Emily and Dena came over before going to a party for Raouf at Peggy's.  The party was for everyone who has ever gone on a trip with Raouf and the Hickey's to Israel.  I crashed the party...and only had to take pictures of the group as my "punishment" for not being official.  It was a lot of fun, lots of great food and I got to visit with friends I don't get to see very often. 

After crashing the party, I came home and crashed.  I'd been invited to meet friends for breakfast today but I had to punt.  I feel like a cement truck has rolled over me several times.  It will be nice not having anyone scheduled to deliver or repair today.  In fact no one comes until Tuesday.  That's when the sprinkler installation begins.  Our grass will be praising God for a consistent drink of water. 

Here are a few pictures charting progress

This is the breakfast nook but it is all things meal wise.  We turned the dining room into a library or sitting room.  Those pics are to come.

 Sitting on the couch by the window looking into the kitchen.
 Another view from the kitchen of the breakfast nook.
The living room view from the entry way.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Thursday Thoughts, Third Edition

Every day we are adjusting to life on the prairie.  One thing that I'm still learning is all about timing.  In Houston, you gave almost every drive time at least 30 minutes, even if you were just a few blocks or miles from your destination.  Here, it is all about 5-10 timing, maybe less.  I'm talking about driving around here not back into Houston. This actually gives more time to get things done around home or do a blog post.  Whatever....

I took yesterday off.  I hit the road, went out to breakfast and did some pricing of things, bought pillows and mattress pads for guest rooms and splurged on a bread maker.  Not just an ordinary bread maker, but one from Williams Sonoma.  This thing does it all except brush your teeth for you.  Bought a couple of the bread mixes and I've been given some stellar bread making advice from friends.  You should have seen the faces of the sales clerks in Williams when I asked, it says add water and oil.  What kind of oil should I use?  I kind of had that WD 40 look on my face. 

Realizing we get very poor cell phone reception here, we added a Comcast line.  Since we have been without a land line for a long time, I had forgotten about telemarketing phone calls.  So far all of them have been for home security.  When we were pricing home security, we couldn't get any of the major firms to even give us a price quote.  Now that we have found a company and have security installed, we are getting calls from every security firm around.  I added our number to the do not call list but it doesn't take effect until 30 days from now. 

Another thing, we have to call the Chronicle every day to have our paper delivered.  With newspapers trying to hold onto a diminishing customer base, you'd think someone could get the paper here.  Only day we didn't have to call was on Sunday.  Maybe we should change to just the weekends and see if that makes things less complicated.

I think I met the door repair man with jelly on my face this morning.  Not that I'm all concerned how I looked to a man wearing crocs, black socks, t-shirt with arms cut off and holey shorts.  But you know jelly especially when it is strawberry can quickly be blended into ones cheeks for that sun kissed bronzed look.  It is a little sticky but it gets the job done.  I attracted a trail of ants though while I was outside with him.  Now, the A/C guy will come in a couple of hours to look at something in the casista bedroom and then Pottery Barn between 4:00 and 6:00. 

When did mattress pads cost $120.00?  I couldn't believe it!  The cheapest one at Macy's started at $80 bucks.  I took myself right over to Target and got the good old fashioned $20.00 kind.  Just need something to cover the thing, not add padding.  I also found some $4.50 pillows to put in shams. 

Tomorrow the second couch for the family room is delivered.  I thought it might be a couple more weeks.  The little secretary desk, or would the politically correct thing be to say is administrative professional desk, should be delivered sometime in the next few weeks.  Then I need to look for some accent tables since the pedestal table isn't going to work too well in the family room. 

Buddy is getting suspicious about our in and outs certain doors.  I am trying to keep her on the innocent side of knowing how a front and back door work.  Roy and I have a tedious exit process right now.  When the door guy came, I did open the front door because I knew Bud was in the back of the house, but I think she got a glimpse of it opening.  That crafty cat has about 3 hiding places now.  She can't nap on the bed like she used to.  It keeps me on my toes. 

It was so refreshing to be back in choir rehearsal last night.  My soul and spirit were ministered to and afterwards I got my fellowship on visiting and laughing hysterically with friends.  It dawned on me around 9:30 that I still had a 30 minute drive awaiting me.  Think it will be a good thing because that time on the road helped me unwind.  I am usually pretty wired after Wednesday night choir.  In fact it was Roy who kept waking me up last night asking questions.  He woke up late this morning and when I finally arose, I felt as if a truck had run over me. 

Back to my cleaning.  It is beyond me how so much dried out prairie grass gets into the house. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Uses Time and Materials Wisely, Works and Plays Well with Others

Thought I might go with a school theme this morning since school starts here next week.  This is day two for Roy driving to the Park and Ride and then taking the bus into downtown.  Likes the bus part but is still trying to work out the route he will take to 99.  In fact he left earlier today than he did yesterday and in an email this morning I reminded him that school begins next week and the traffic will be worse.  Come thou fount of every blessing, I knew that is what he thought about that good news this morning. 

Yesterday the patio furniture for the courtyard and for the back porch were being delivered.  Of course you could bank on it, both deliveries arrived at the same time.  Macy's arrived first and began putting the furniture together and taking it around back.  The furniture from Costco was next to arrive and the delivery was anything less than dutiful.  Right from the start the delivery man lets me know he isn't going to take any of the delivery apart, set it up or bring it into the house.  Told him it was going in the front courtyard, so no problem.  I was of the understanding that set up was included in the delivery, but Nancy girl did not read the fine print.  I had to help him get the delivery into the courtyard and I joked about not being a member of the union and I hoped I didn't get in trouble.  Delivery man had no sense of humor and said, there's no union.  Right then and there I should have climbed up on all those boxes on a pallet and yell like Sally Field did in Norma Rae, Union, union, union!!!  But I wanted this guy gone, so I only played out the scene in my mind.  Think he was waiting on a tip and I usually tip delivery guys because it is hard work, it's hot and most go the extra mile to help the customer.  My tip was  pulling the pallet up our steep sidewalk with him pushing the thing.  Not the thing for me to be doing in the heat and with a few heart events during the week. 

So last night after dinner, we went out, we came back home and began to take the boxes apart and assemble our set.  I am so very happy to report that both Roy and I stuck with the jobs we are good at and didn't try to take over the other's tasks.  Roy actually read the directions and understood them.  I read them and once all the jargon about washer K, bolt B, screw A, pvc part H...well you get the picture that I didn't get the picture.  Attention span was gone with the Katy prairie wind.  The evening grew dark and we kept at it.  Never once did we say anything in that aggravated tone of voice, or raise our voices or getting our (read my) feelings hurt.  We cleaned up the mess and kicked it out on the curb for the garbage today.  We were rather persperous and sweaty and I did the majority of my work seated, but we actually put the thing together and it is still standing this morning.

We didn't get a couple other projects taken care of and we still have some assembly to be done on the table.  So, guess Roy and I would both get a + in using time and materials wisely and works and plays well with others.  And you know it had to be a God thing because this kind of stuff is not in our natural or spiritual gifting.  Thus our usual cry of outsource, outsource, outsource became job well done. 

Monday, August 15, 2011

Stuff, Possesions, Junk and Cool Trendy Things

It is slightly ironic that as I sit here waiting on two furniture deliveries the effect of sorting, giving, throwing, packing, unpacking, storing and giving of this past week has me slightly overwhelmed with the fact, we have way too much stuff.  When we began this whole process in February, it seemed we were ahead of the game.  I had time to go through boxes of keepsakes and memories.  Religiously sorting through letters, cards, journals, pictures and programs I felt like I had done a great culling and letting go.  In fact, I went through things a second and third time.  There were still too many memories taking up space, so I reluctantly shredded letters from friends.  The hardest being, only keeping some of the letters my mom wrote me when they lived in Georgetown.  My mom has always loved to write and receive letters which explains why I love that too.  She would write 2 and maybe sometimes 3 letters a week to me.  So, you see I had a plethora and a dilemma.  Painstakingly, I went through her letters and kept the most meaningful.  My mother's Alzheimer's makes this decision even more painful, but it had to be done.  Then there is the box full of wedding and shower cards.  Over three fourth of the cards, I don't even remember the people.  Shred!   There are boxes of school day memories and the like.  Some of that stuff went too.  I mean really, why did my mom keep all my workbooks?  Another fact confirmed, my artistic ability in drawing has not advanced too much since my kindergarten pictures.  Stick figures are my forte. 

Our entry way is divided like the wheat and the tares.  The boxes continue to increase for Katy Christian Ministries.  Some boxes need to go out to the casita bedroom, but I am still going through the boxes in there.  No matter, the room needs to be cleared for the bed and project table delivery on Thursday.  We think we need to order another bookcase for Roy's study.  He didn't realize how much space he had for books at the condo verses here at the house.  Several boxes hold things from my desk.  I just ordered a small desk for me that will double as a desk and enhance the entry way decor. 

It is a process.  Granted we both have lots of shorts and t-shirts because at the condo it took forever for clothes to dry.  The dryer vent went up to the roof and never did a good job.  Can you even realize how elated we have been when it took so little time to wash and dry sheets.  We freaked at the timeliness of jeans being dried.  Wow, this whole new washer and dryer thing has freed up lots of extra time.  We started going through clothes last night because we do not have room for everything.

Here is something that is just sad, I found a box that hadn't even been opened since we moved close to 18 years ago.  Serving trays that I hadn't even missed or remembered owning were the contents. 

While taking a break from boxes last night, I watched a little bit of Hoarders.  Now there is a show that will put light in your britches to get things done.  Just from watching a few minutes I had one last burst of energy to take care of more stuff.  The man who was the focus last night was trying to analyze why he started keeping everything.  He had a significant loss earlier in life and he thinks from that time onward, he began to "collect" which is hoarder talk for keeping all their junk.  During different times in this move I have contemplated why I can get on a kick of something and end up with a lot of that something.  Could be that when I was a kid our personal possessions were kind of sparse.  We didn't grow up poor but I think my parents, more so my dad's view was, don't give your children things that they might like, need or want because this lack will make them strong and not weak.  Everything whether it be discipline, love, Christmas, or getting ready to go back to school, was geared to this mantra, you will be strong, in control and not be weak.  This way nothing can hurt you.  Great theory but it didn't play out well in real life.  Roy is the middle child and his whole focus was to please his parents.  He though if he didn't ask for anything, they would notice this wonderful trait and give him what he needed.  Well, that didn't work either because of the whole squeaky wheel gets the grease thing.  Really, the middle kid of five boys... So there you are two damaged people, who like stuff and the lack of stuff early in life has played out into too much stuff later on. 

Hmmm....could things be trying to fill that hole in my spirit that can only be filled by God?  It hasn't ever really dawned on me, this obsession, until looking at it full the face this past week.  I have never been one to hold onto things too tightly, so maybe that justified everything.  I don't know, but I did read something this morning that kind of has me thinking and wondering...  "It's not our religious activities, it's not keeping the rules, it's not being a dutiful soldier fulfilling a cause.  He wants our lives and our hearts in intimate joyful relationship with Him."  Living on the Edge by Chip Ingram   So then maybe I should be thinking God likes me whether or not I have this cool stuff.  I joked with friends the other day that maybe now after seeing all we have moved, that I should read Radical. 

Back to work at hand, with a song in my heart, gratefulness for this home and maybe a little more understanding.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

900 Post

Certainly something moving (not referring to our recent relocating) or stirring (no, haven't cooked anything yet) or insightful would be appropriate for a 900 post...but I gots nothing.  Roy has gone back to the condo to pick up things left behind and at this point I am almost ready to say...yes, leave them behind.  Although the all important ironing board is on its way to Katy.  While he has been loading and throwing, I have been sorting and storing.  Since I have given over ownership of my beloved desk to Roy, I have no place for my pens, erasers, pencils and paper clips.  So, I'm debating whether to go ahead and order a desk that has caught my fancy online or wait.  After seeing how much I have that has no place to go, desk ordering will probably be happening sometime today. 

We spent a lot of time in Lowe's and Home Depot contemplating 8' ladders yesterday.  There was a sign by the ladders at HD that offered free shipping of any ladder under 24'.  Yet at the check out we were told delivery would be $49.00.  Forget about it...the ladder is cheaper at Lowe's  and we can fit it in Sequisha if we happen to put part of the ladder between us on the ride home.  We had all kinds of other home goods with us purchased from both places yesterday and fitting a ladder in with us would have been difficult for a ride home.  So changing out the filters will have to wait a few more days.  We have the more important task of buying TV's facing us.  Actually, I very rarely make those kind of shopping excursions with Roy.  My gnat like attention span doesn't help in the tedious process of making the correct decision for the TV hopefully living with us successfully for the next few years. 

Loving Dish Network verses Comcast.  Only now I have to learn all new channel settings.  You're probably saying, is that all you have to worry over?  No, but again the attention span to actually learn new settings isn't all that focused.  There are several projects all over the house that has my attention, well at least for a few minutes at a time.  That is why I sit here at the desk, writing a blog post rather than finding a new place for stuff.  Since I haven't found an accent table for the family room and Roy doesn't have any kind of nightstand on his side of the bed, and of course the fore mentioned desk, I don't know what to do with things.  I haven't even tackled the casita bedroom which needs to be cleared up for the daybed delivery on Thursday. 

The ice dropping in the ice machine scares Buddy and me every time.  We both just jumped out of our skin and fur.  Buddy is beginning to be more confident in our new home.  She slept with us last night and she hasn't spent too much time hiding under beds today.  The windows aren't as accesible to her for the all important bird watching, so we are going to have to figure something out for her. 

Last night Peggy and Bill called us on their way back home to see if we wanted to meet them and Jaime for snow cones.  I kind of said no but that was Houston is hard to remember we aren't in Kansas anymore.  So we met them and then went onto Home Depot. 

We aren't on any GPS or Google map yet.  So, no one making deliveries can find us and have to call to get directions.  We were missed by our garbage service on Tuesday, but happily they found us on Friday.  No newspaper delivery until today.  Once the new dry cleaners know us by name, we will have really arrived.  It still doesn't feel real living out here. Think we located the closest dry cleaners to us yesterday and next to it is a really fun store full of cute things that I have no room for right now but should have that situation remedied in a few short weeks.  Hey, just supporting the local economy.   They have some of the cutest fall decorations.  Maybe fall decorations will help deliver us from this heat and lack of rain.  In the spirit of being a good neighbor, I have designated any Nordstrom purchases I might have made to the "we are trying to keep this grass alive" fund.   Only in Houston, without any significant rainfall would we be thinking a nice little hurricane might fit the bill. 

 I still have difficulty finding necessary things to get ready in the mornings.  Reality will hit Roy tomorrow as he begins an early morning drive over to the Park and Ride and the ride into downtown Houston.  Roy says he has never looked so forward to going back to work after a vacation in all his life.  Guess me trying to convince him he was at the Inn on the Biltmore Estate didn't work.  I didn't think those freebie shampoos and soap from there were enough. 

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Just Another Saturday in the Neighborhood

Buddy and I are holed up in Roy's study.  The sa-cur-i-ty guy is here and because Buddy hasn't been here during the week, we are nervous that she'll get skittish and run out the door.  Interesting, the very rooms she hasn't wanted to have anything to do with are now the rooms that she is crying to get into.  Hmm...sounds a bit like me at times.  The study has french doors, so at least she can look out and keep her all too vigilant eyes on everything.  I thought she would sleep like a cat last night but she wouldn't stay still for too long.  I don't think she is a fan of ceiling fans. 

Later today, we will make yet another Lowe's run.  We need to purchase an 8 foot ladder, another garbage container, some kind of hose (not panty hose thankfully) and other various and sundry things. 

On Monday the furniture for the courtyard and the furniture for the back porch will be delivered.  Then Thursday Pottery Barn comes and that should be it for deliveries for a while.  I do have a couple other things to order, but will wait and see how everything looks once we are really settled. 

It is interesting getting used to new noises in the house.  I told Roy in the evenings I feel like I am on vacation somewhere because we were turning on the light in the bathroom so that we, OK who am I kidding, so I could find it in the middle of the night.  We finally found our night light and that has helped.  I'm also getting used to where I have put my make up and stuff like that.  We are at that point in unpacking where we don't quite know what to do with some stuff.  Looks like another trip to Katy Christian Ministries is in the offering.  Other stuff just doesn't have a place.  We cut down our storage pieces when we moved.  Some of this stuff will go into the attic now that we have the extra plywood in for more storage area. 

For those who might be building a house in the cannot ever have too many electrical outlets in the bathroom.  We just have the ones by our sinks.  It would be helpful to have at least another outlet somewhere in the room or closet. 

Roy and I made our first trip to the local HEB Thursday night.  Not too bad.  In fact they have two items that I like that I have only found at the play grocery store and surprise, for a much lower price than the play grocery store.  I still get the HEB-ijittys there but maybe I will soon over come that.  I haven't cooked anything but we did bring home prepared food and had dinner here last night.  At the quick stop I made at Rice yesterday, I picked up some deli ham with rosemary.  It is out of this world good.  I should have bought some rosemary bread to go with it for sandwiches.  Maybe on my next stop there I will do just that.

We have found a bunch of Mexican food places to eat around here, now we are on the lookout for other options. 

Friday, August 12, 2011

Moved and Unpacked(well unpacking)

Long time no post and that is due to the fact that we moved this week.  This will be short but we are so thankful that the whole process toward the end of the building a home journey went smoothly.  Closing last Friday went without a hitch.  We came over and picked up the keys and we dropped off a few things that we had in the back of Sequisha.  Then we went and picked up our mail box assignment and keys.  We headed back to the condo and began loading up the cars.  Dena came over and she helped take a load out to our new home.  First things first, we ate dinner then came out here.  Saturday, we did the same kind of thing trying to get all the kitchen things here.  For someone who doesn't cook, I have a whole lot lot of dishes and cooking type things.  David and Emily came over on Saturday and Emily used her natural talents and spiritual gift of organization and she and Dena whipped my kitchen into shape.  On Sunday, Roy and I brought out all our hanging clothes and then prepared for the professionals to take over on Monday. 

So this week has been unpacking, waiting on deliveries, repairs, professionals and did I mention unpacking?  The deliveries have gone without a hitch.  Next week I just have patio and courtyard furniture deliveries and Pottery Barn on Thursday.  I believe Tuesday will be the first day in a long while that will just be a day, a regular day. 

We love it out here.  One of my favorite things to do in the cool of the evening and yes there is a nice breeze out here that makes it feel cool, is to water the trees and landscaping.  We are trying to put up a victorious fight of keeping our grass alive.  We have such a small yard, we didn't think we would need sprinklers.  Well, we were wrong.  So, we are trying to get someone out here to give us an estimate. 

We have been without TV or the Internet until today.  It was kind of nice to have quiet evenings, with just the radio and a good book.  Believe me, even after purging my collection, between the two of us we still have a whole lot of books.  The new furniture looks nice and I really want to play with it, arranging it.  But...there are more important things right now like, getting rid of boxes. 

On my way in to pick up Buddy, I stopped at Bed, Bath and Beyond and did a fairly sizable damage to our home accessories budget.  Stopped at Macy's and picked up a few things.  Went to the Amish Craftsman to look at benches and tables.  Then made a short stop at the Play Grocery store.  So, right now, we know Buddy is in the house, we just don't know where.  She is a bit overwhelmed by it all but hopefully, she will get used to everything soon. 

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Rocking Buddy's World

Lots and lots of books

We are not hoarders as might be supposed from these pictures.  In fact I filtered the choices because there are a few pictures that could look possibly hoarder-esk.  I worked diligently yesterday getting odds and ends packed away.  I also came across some things I had gone through early in the process and a lot of that stuff was shredded or put into the Goodwill box.  The old letters from boyfriends met the shredmatic yesterday.  Throughout the years I thought the letters might be interesting to those who had to go through things but after helping with my MIL's stuff and dealing with our own stuff, those "interesting" letters bid farewell.  No one really has time to read through everything and the fact that these boys and I broke up with each other every other week by mail has really been deemed by me as, boring. 

I treated myself to a Le Peep birthday breakfast this morning.  Then I went to the bank for a cashier's check, ran a few errands and picked  up the birthday cake Roy ordered.  Something is not right this birthday.  I am 57 years old, with wrinkles, dry skin and a major pimple breakout.  That is just wrong!  I know the breakout is from all the stress this week, getting closer to closing and seeing everything that needs to be taken care of by tomorrow.  Gee, good thing I don't have prom or something this weekend.  My beauty regime of late has been Perricone MD.  Come on Doc, can't you help a girl out?  I mean a senior citizen out and that is only if there is some kind of discount involved. 

I like the new ATM cards, they have an arrow on them indicating which way the card goes into the machine.  Although, I was good for a few laughs at the bank this morning, because I always choose the wrong door to exit and I also push instead of pull.  The bank close to our new home will have all the fun of watching my bumbling and stumbling.  They are going to miss me at the old bank. 

After a long day of throwing and packing, I treated myself to the Toddler and Tiara/Dance Moms flip a thon last night.  Good grief, everyone of those women act like they are still in jr high...and that goes for both programs.  Yet still, I watch. 

We did our walk through on Tuesday afternoon.  I promise you one of our living room walls looked like a blue mosaic of the last supper.  Roy being a former auditor and still a member in good standing as a Certified Internal Auditor (a little brag on the hubs.  when he took the Certified Internal Auditor exam, his score was one of the top five...not in America, but in the world of the over 2000 that sat for it that year) ...anyway, as a former auditor and being anal retentive man, there was blue tape every where.  Of course this ADD rattled brain had the attention span of a gnat, so I got very distracted and could not stay on task.  Thank goodness for Roy's tenaciousness.  After we finished up all the blue tape business, we headed over to the lake.  Everyone was going out to dinner, so we joined them and had a blast.  Although saying that Las Almedes was slow isn't descriptive enough...I don't know what is slower than slow or bluer than blue.  Afterwards, we wanted to do a nighttime drive by of the house and I am so glad we did.  It was not locked up.  The security monitor keyboard had already been stolen once.  So Roy locked it up and we were on our way home.  

Some of the kitchen junk packed up.  I am really shocked at how many kitchen utensils I actually own.

Yes, that is a basket full of tennis shoes and thank you, yes, there are tennis shoes in the boxes.  When I find a shoe that I like, in my hard to find size, I buy as many of them as I can.  Although in the quest of getting things ready for moving, I think it is safe to say I don't need to buy tennis shoes, flip flops or t-shirts for a very, very long time. 

This will be an extendomatic birthday that.  Today is also Buddy's birthday.  I believe she is six years old today.  Little does she know, that she is going to camp next week or she might call it prison.  Doesn't matter, they both tell you when to eat, when to sleep, when you have free time and they always tell you what to do.  I prefer calling it camp.  But this little Russian Blue cat is going to be upset then happy with her new home.  Russian Blues like consistency, they don't like change.  Buddy, your whole world is getting ready to be rocked!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

On the Home Front

Slowly but surely we have almost everything packed and the back end of Sequisha is once again full of drop offs at the Goodwill.  We are still moving way too much stuff but I think most people feel that way once the final inventory is in.  It is interesting to see one's life stacked up in boxes.  I will probably take some pictures to remember this season of life.  In retrospect, I probably needed all these months to go through paperwork, memories, clothes and the like.  When we moved into the condo, we moved in pretty lean and clean but after living here nearly 18 years, it is amazing but not amazing, amazing to find all kinds of things that haven't seen the light of day for a long time.  Oh, is there a market for dust bunnies?  I believe we have a very prolific bunch.  Too bad we aren't moving around Easter.  Surely everyone wants a dust bunny along with the chocolate bunny in their basket. 

To get into moving shape I did a little practice run through last night by helping a friend.  She had found a chair for her home and the back of Sequisha was just the right size to carry it home.  So, we picked up the chair and then stopped for dinner.  One must pace themselves and have proper nutrition in the moving or in this case, the delivery process.  Once we had properly energized up, we carried the chair into her home, successfully, without too much wear and tear, not on the chair but on the ol' body.  Think I'm ready coach, put me in.

Monday, August 1, 2011

The Re-purpsosed Driven Life

The Toyota service has kind of messed up our Saturday morning plans.  Roy had a 7:30 appointment to have Sequisha's oil changed and have all the required maintenance taken care of so the stupid light will stop flashing.  Usually, he is out of there by 9:00 and our plans were to go to Le Peep for our last Saturday morning breakfast, well last as in living in this area of town.  Doesn't look like it's going to happen.  He took the book Unbroken to read and I'm here packing up misc items that we can't quite do without thus, we are moving them until our attention is directed to them once again.  I'm taking a break, I can only do so much wrapping and packing on just a snack of a banana. 

My designer vocabulary has increased in these past months.  As I have written before, coffee tables and end tables are now called accent tables, but it seems a bit redundant because when referring to an accent table one must delineate where the accent table should be located.  I have recently learned the term "floating a couch" and all that means is this, it is a couch that is not pushed up against a wall or windows.  It is a couch floating in the middle of the room.  I prefer floating couches due to the fact that for so many years because of a room's design, the only choice I had was shoving a couch against a wall.  The new look in fencing is called "friendly neighbor fence."  This is a wooden fence that alternates the slats so that no one only has one side of the fence.  Our fence is mostly complete and we are happily surprised to have a little more backyard than what we thought we would have.  Of course there are the old standbys of window treatment and floor covering.  The hottest buzz in the midst of all these floating couches, accent tables and window treatment is, re purposed.  So much of the furniture I've been looking at is re-purposed.  Re-purposed is just a relevant term for used.  The wood can be from an old barn, an old house, a junk yard or garage sale.  I've been contemplating a desk made of re-purposed wood from China.  Something tells me, it is faux re-purposed wood. 

All this attention of re-purposed materials has me thinking a tab bit on the spiritual side of life.  God's purpose and plan for me has never changed, He knew all that before I was even born.  Which, we are going to take one of those famous Monablog detours right now.  There are a lot of songs written that say something to the effect of, He died for me and He didn't even know me, He gave abundant life to me and He didn't even know're getting the drift.  That might be a really sentimental and poignant thought but it is biblically untrue.  Psalms 139 comes to mind and dismisses the whole, He didn't know me but...thought.  These kind of songs are usually Southern Gospel in nature and Enlighten on XM Sirrus radio has been my choice of station for the past few months.  Anyway, I digress.   Oh yes re-purposed life. Some say re-claimed in this genre of reusing materials.  I find myself re-purposed and re-claimed.  Bad decisions, believing people who I shouldn't have, bad self image and self talk took me farther away from God's original purpose for my life.  Thank God, He's reclaimed me and re-purposed me to use me in the way He plans.  Most of that re-purposed wood from barns and homes look really good by floated couches, accent tables, window treatments, and floor coverings.  May my life be just as beautiful in the Master Carpenter's Hands.