Saturday, November 30, 2013

Post Thanksgiving and Black Friday

A quiet moment on Saturday morning.  It feels good to sit here, eating breakfast and not having to jump into the day so quickly.  This week has had a lot of workmen, installers and appointments to have things taken care of around the house.  The men have come in, done their job and disturbed everyday life.  Another thing I notice is, when they moved furniture, they failed to complete the task because, none of it has been put back into place.  The day is beginning quietly but once Roy gets home from Bible study and yet one more trip to Best Buy, the TV will be on until late this evening.  We will work on the last bit of Christmas and then we will cheer Auburn in the Iron Bowl. 

Guess I am a little sad because fall officially ended yesterday for us out here on the prairie.  I gathered together all my favorite decorations and stored them away until next September.  We are in the midst of Christmas decorations.  We listened and watched LSU win for senior day in Death Valley with improbable freshmen and second stringers as they made a 99 yard march down the field in the closing moments of the game.    In a melancholy way the sound of college football is silent until much later in December after today.  Yep. fall is over and now onto winter.

This has been an unusual Thanksgiving.  I like that.  I don't miss a lot of things about the holidays from the past, but the one constant that I do miss whether it be a holiday or an every day, is my mother.  Truthfully, I always had a countdown that began on Thanksgiving and ended in mid-January where the best moment of the day was putting an X on the day and getting one day closer to the goal of being done with this season.   We went against the status quo of holidays after my mother passed away because it is futile to try and recreate certain parts of holidays.  It is better to begin new ways, not even going to use the word traditions.  It works for this season of our lives.  Last year we went out of town for Thanksgiving, this year we stayed around home.  Because we have had so many in working and since we did not have Sequisha, we weren't able to go to the storage unit to get decorations until Thanksgiving Day. 

Sequisha came home to us on Wednesday.  Roy brought her home.  She looks great.  Thanksgiving morning Roy made a delicious breakfast.  Let's just say anytime Midway Market bacon is a part of a meal, it is a good meal.  Roy began scouting out the sales and making his action plan for Friday morning.  Once he did that, we went over to Bass Pro Shop because that is what non hunting or sporting life people do on a holiday.  Two years ago we bought holiday dishes there and new boots for Roy.  This year I got a winter hat and Roy got some flannel and waffle shirts.  Then we went to the storage unit.  We had forgotten just how much Christmas junk we have which is somewhat surprising since it is not the most wonderful time of the year for me.  Many of the things I have were things made by my mom or ornaments she brought back from trips that we would find in our Christmas stockings.  Yep, my mom did our stockings up until those last years when we would have been grateful if she even knew what stockings were.   During that first trip to the storage unit, we realized the timing of the day was off for our holiday meal.  So after the first load we went to Jack in the Box and got our Thanksgiving tacos.  Then we unloaded and went back for the much smaller second load.  Later in the evening we went over to our friends for a bit and when we came home we finished off Thanksgiving Day with some of the best ham I have ever tasted. 

Yesterday, we waited for Comcast and they actually came on time.  After lunch, we began working on decorations for the yard.  It had been my intention to outsource lights but we waited too late.  So, we added net lights on our hedge which one would think would be an easy task.  Ha!  I live to laugh!  In the midst of untangling net lights we come to the conclusion we have not bought enough lights for our hedge.  Once again math failed me and it was Roy's math which is usually good.  We should have gone with my...hmmm...5 boxes of lights just feels right approach.  Thus Math Man had to go back to Lowe's, who by this time are almost out of lights to get a few more boxes.  In the midst of searching for lights and other things, he had his shopping cart with the boxes of lights he had found, stolen from him when his back was turned.  He tracked down the culprit and when their back was turned, he took them right back.  Ah, the Christmas spirit on Black Friday.....  What is so sad is, Roy was at Lowe's at 5:00 am that morning getting a wet vac, work light and flashlight that were on special.  Roy just left to go back to Lowe's because the multi plug timer dealy we bought, doesn't work. 

Last night I finished up decorating in the house.  Buddy was wandering through the boxes and I think she was getting nervous that we were packing.  She was my little gray shadow for most of the evening.  We bought these little Christmas lambs last year and keeping Buddy distracted from those took up a lot of valuable decorating time.  Finally, when she had given up staying awake, I was able to put them where I had planned and hopefully she doesn't see them.  I had planned to put out many more decorations but made a decision to go light on decorations.  The antique French pot rack is being used as a tree for the third year and it is almost finished.  I need to find another stocking hanger and then I think the rest of everything will be loaded up and returned to the storage unit.  Don't think I am even going to hang any wreaths this year but I might change my mind by the end of the day.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving Eve Day!

When we were at The Biltmore in September we discovered a great magazine , Our State.  Of course it is not our state, but the state of North Carolina.  We decided to subscribe to it and received the first magazine this week.  Even though we do not live in NC, several articles were of such great interest that we upped our subscription for another year.  Included in this Christmas issue is, 16 Original Prayers for North Carolina and one of them is from Billy Graham.  Since we are making a return trip during the Christmas holidays to The Biltmore, it's nice to have this resource to plan things out for the trip.  In fact we front loaded an extra day at the start of our trip instead of taking two nights for traveling.  If the roads are clear, we will be able to get to a gallery we both like in a small town outside of Asheville.  I follow the gallery owner on FB and love the new photographs and paintings.  One might need to come home with us.

After a few dreary, wet, cold days, it is still cold but the sun is out.  I don't mind those cold, dreary days at all.  I welcome them though many others do not.  Buddy is watching the birds and Roy has gone to pick up Sequisha.  We will be so happy to have her home.  While we appreciated the Jeep, the ease of getting in and out of Sequisha is more appreciated than ever. 

Yesterday, seemed like a taco soup kind of day.  Only, we were missing a few ingredients.  Roy volunteered to make a Kroger run.  So thankful for that.  Dena was dropping off my coat I accidently left at her house on Sunday evening, so we invited her to eat dinner with us.  She volunteered to bring chips and queso.  One never turns down the offer of chips and queso.  Ironically, she a Texas A&M graduate had to eat dinner off our LSU placemats.  They are paper and we asked if she wanted to take hers home as a souvenir.  Surprisingly, she declined.  Dena and I watched the finale of DWTS.  I hadn't watched it this season but with all the filler montages,  I didn't feel like I had missed a thing. 

For the second day in a row, Roy made a Southern Maid donut and kolache run.  Last night we both said at the same time, that the donut shop stop needed to end, well at least for now.  Because this afternoon we will pick up our Thanksgiving dinner from Good Ol' Boys.  It is a calorie laden extravaganza!  Tomorrow in the late afternoon, we will go to friend's to finish up celebrating our thankfulness and appreciation of all that God has provided.  Each Thanksgiving in the past few years has been different.  Two years ago, my mother was buried on the Friday after Thanksgiving.  Last year Roy decided we should do something different and we went to North Carolina to spend Thanksgiving at The Biltmore.  OK, yes, the Biltmore is not different in what we do, but he thought it would be a good thing on the first anniversary of my mother's passing and service.  We will be going to the Bass Pro Shop tomorrow, kind of our tradition and Roy will probably go out and take a few photos like he likes to do.  You know me, I am content with a good book, a good cat and a good cup of hot tea chased with a Diet Coke. 

I read an interesting article this morning, actually an opinion piece of the NY Review of Books.  It is political in nature but that's not why I found it interesting.  The piece is on the decisions made in the first term of our President's administration and for me any President's name could be substituted and I say this because this is not a political discourse on my part.  What drew me in was the reminder of making good decisions early on make for a better time further down the road.  This article could be true of any corporation or organization right down to the degree of decisions we make each and everyday in our little lives.  We should always keep in mind those we surround ourselves with, whose opinions we value, and the effect their presence and words have in our lives.  The Psalmist knew that from way back when, Psalm One states it plainly. 

Happy Thanksgiving Eve Day!

Monday, November 25, 2013

A Little Night Convergence

Good Morning Monday!  I am delighted to see you!  I am thankful to see you!  It's a beautiful Monday morning in the neighborhood, in Rancho De Five and in our home.  The heater is taking the edge of coolness out of the air and the fireplace is adding ambiance and warmth.  Roy is coming in from Southern Maid, which just happened to open this morning.  He is all things being equal because I think he was the first customer for the Shipley's when it opened.  There is an assortment to sample.  I passed on the boudain kolache, but Roy has proclaimed it to be wonderful.  The glazed donut kind of reminds me of Krispy Cream in glazing style.  When one can be a donut critic, one must have eaten too many donuts in one's lifetime.  Accompanying our assortment today is coffee flavored with Bailey's Irish Cream.  Not the real stuff but the coffee creamer.  But all the above only contributes to a beautiful morning on the prairie.  I will get to that in a minute.

We went to church yesterday morning, our church, not visiting a church.  Honestly the draw for attendance was the release of the orchestra's new CD.  Which by the way is outstanding!  It is called Adoration at Stone Chapel.  The other draw?  A return trip to The Fresh Market.  The serendipity of the morning, going to Le Peep, otherwise called LBS-Late Breakfast Stop, with Cary and Kathleen.  We had a lovely meal together with laughs and good conversation...heck, we even had prayer and the prayer was to thank God not to bring in a table or to quiet a room.  Love that about our LBS.  We adjourned and Roy and I headed to The Fresh Market.  We picked up a few supplies for pre Thanksgiving week and Thanksgiving Day.  We also stopped in at Barnes and Noble because I had a mailer full of coupons that were just begging to be used and used they were.  Roy found a book, I found a book and a magazine and buy one get one free tin of tea.  We chose Christmas Spice.  Then we got back in the Jeep Wrangler, which by the way is a whole lot easier to get in than to get out of, and headed back to the wet, cold prairie.  We were welcomed at the door by a meowing, attention needing Buddy.  Buddy and I soon settled in for a cup of hot tea, a book and eventually a nap.  Roy tried to hang in there with the Texans.  If they had been winning, it would have been too loud to take a nap on the couch. 

I had texted Dena in the afternoon to let me know when she got home because I had a few goodies for her.  Knew she had an exhausting weekend.  I planned to leave the goodies by the gate so she could get them and still have much needed alone time.  What a great surprise when she called that she had gotten in some alone time and wanted me to come in with the goodies.  I was so happy to do so because I wanted to see the new things she got for her home.  Love how she has made her home so warm and inviting.  We visited a little and then I headed back home to read and to watch football with Roy.  Love to watch Peyton Manning play. 

All was calm until about 1:30 am.  I woke up and ended up throwing up.  Of course never waking the slumbering and snoring Roy.  I got back in bed feeling rather confident that a return trip was unnecessary, but then the strangest thing happened.  I was immediately drenched in sweat.  I thought my heart had gone into afib because I could feel an irregular beat.  I got up to take a blood pressure reading, never once disturbing Roy, and found it to be normal and my oxygen count in my blood was good too.  I returned to bed still sweating and actually kicked off the covers to cool off and now my skin felt like someone had rubbed Ben Gay on me.  Nothing was working to help me cool off, so I woke up Roy.  He fixed me a cool compress of ice and I put that on the back of my neck.  I asked him to pray for me and he did asking the Lord for bold things.  He fell back asleep but the tingling on my skin continued.  If something didn't happen soon, I was going to wake up Roy once again to either call for an ambulance or take me to the hospital.   And then, just as suddenly as it all had come upon me, it was gone.  I woke up this morning feeling good, heart in rhythm.  I have no clue what all that was about last night but I don't want it to return.  There were several times I had the maudlin thoughts of, am I going to die?  Well, I know that will happen someday unless the rapture occurs before that, but I was thinking more specifically...last night.  Maybe it was my meds not agreeing with popcorn I ate way too late last night but I can say...out my house whatever that sickness was. 

Roy is anxious to get the day started but of course I am into easing into the day.  I think he really wants to use this computer and not the lap top.  So I am off, literally the computer and the start of a beautiful day. 

Saturday, November 23, 2013

November Wintery Saturday

If you have read Monablog for anytime you know that once winter like temperatures and overcast days roll around, I'm humming and quoting the song, In the Bleak Mid know one of the happiest and joyful songs of all Christmas.  Half the time I am not singing the real words but words that M&G wrote to it years ago.  It's a mixed bag.  I have to have the words of What Child Is This in front of me because I sing our version of Whose Child Is This.  I have forgotten the real words.

Roy just came home from Bible study and he is getting ready to head back out to take some things to KCM, remember that is Katy Christian Ministries, not Ken Copeland Ministries.  Don't think he or his ministry is in need of gently worn clothes.  Then he is making a stop at Midway Market for bacon.  It's that time of year when the world falls in love and it could be falling in love with bacon over at our home.  We rarely eat it but cold temps and holidays just says, eat some bacon.  The magazines that we subscribe to also send mixed messages.  There is Southern Living, Southern Lady and Garden and Gun espousing cakes, cookies, sugar, fat, adult beverages and the like....then there are the few fitness magazines we take that espouse the danger of the holiday season of cakes, cookies, sugar, fat, adult beverages and the like...  It is a good thing I have ADD and can't pay attention long enough to feel guilty or prideful about all this.

It is feeling like a Mexican food type of day.  We have to narrow the choices because there are a million places to chose from out here in Rancho De Five.  In the world of food news, Roy saw that a Wendy's is open on 1463.  They have some of the best salads in all of fast food land.  Next to it a Southern Maid Donut shop is opening on Monday. The Luby's/Fudrucker's is getting closer and closer to completion.  Yes, I have finally joined in with the senior adults being happy about a Luby's opening and not some other trendy type of place.  Don't get me wrong, I am happy about Katy getting a Trader Joe's next year but not as happy as veggies already prepared and waiting for you to make your choice or going with a senior discount on the Luanne Platter. 

The fireplace has been on since early this morning.  When you have gas logs I don't think you can refer to it as a roaring fire.  It's gently controlled.  Soon the quiet will turn and our home will be alive with the sounds of LSU football and then later in the evening Baylor football.  Geaux and Sic Em!

While reorganizing last night I came across my heart journal that I kept at the beginning of that journey.  It was fun reading for me because of all the healing that has happened, how each and every twist and turn was met with hope and faith.  The prayers that were being lifted up in my behalf and the kindness of friends and strangers always warms my heart and for these things I am so grateful.  That in the midst of an extraordinary illness, God made it possible for me to live it out as ordinary.  In the journal were some notes I had taken from an online group I joined after I retired due to my heart.  I wanted to make sure my spiritual heart was healing too because working at a church can sometimes be difficult and can cause a crisis of faith, not in God but in the intentions of people.  It's not all prayers and shares.  The group was good for me even though I think in some aspects I am still dealing with issues and happenings that I didn't understand then, and when I see it now, I still don't understand but rejoice I'm not in the midst of it all.  One of the women in the group said something that I had heard years ago, and she too talked in depth of loosing and losing yourself in getting away from toxic people and the grip we can sometimes find ourselves in.  The sad fact is, if we want to get well (John 5) we have to remove ourselves from those people who have had influence on us and who never want us to get well.  Heck, they don't want anyone to get well, they just want to be the benevolent voice that keeps everyone indebted to them.   I remember this woman who was sharing about her situation and with the toxic co-workers and thus co-laborers she had been thrust into and at the end she knew she had to get away.  Slowly but surely she felt all her talents and gifts were being undermined and she saw this chipping away at her marriage and her relationship with her children.  She was healing in this online group and had found a job that valued what she brought and for her the best was, she wouldn't be working for a church or even a non-profit.   I loved the time I met with this online group because we talked or rather typed out frustrations and hurts.  To a woman, each and every one of us experienced significant healing, resulting in not spending a lot of time in bitter and revenge land.  It is good to give thanks unto the Lord and it's good to interact and have closure with those who know how those subtle directives that infuse themselves in the midst of serving can take a toll.

It is now the evening of this cold and overcast Saturday.  Roy and I had Tony's Mexican food for lunch and stopped by Pier One to buy an ottoman I have had my eyes on.  We cheered LSU and now we plan to cheer on Baylor, although I am more nervous for the Baylor game than I was for the LSU game.  The fireplace is lit again and Buddy is asleep in my lap.  Warmed up with a cup of Christmas cinnamon tea.  I need to look for my sweaters.  I have no idea where I stored them.  It could be a layer upon layer kind of day tomorrow. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

A Very Fine Day to Organize and Think of a Hymn

This is the weather that I love!  Overcast and cold.  What a beautiful day!  The rain and thunderstorm this morning just meant that the temps would be dropping sooner than later.  The water feature's level is up rather high.  It is drizzling a little now but again I have to say, I love this weather!  We were able to get out in all this earlier.  We couldn't leave until our warranty guy made it here to check on our shower.  He doesn't think it is anything serious.  After Roy took care of some business emails, we headed over to Target.  We got everything on our list and then some.  Roy was in the mood for Chinese food, so we headed over to T Jin's.  It also gave us a chance to run into HEB for a few things with hundreds of our best friends.  While we were eating we got a call from the dealership and Sequisha should be ready to return home on Monday or Tuesday. 

I've been holed up in the casita bedroom most of the afternoon.  Have several projects started but I stopped them because I needed to be better organized.  I feel like I have almost accomplished the reorganization.  One of the things we got at Target is a Crossly Radio.  We have one in the house and the sound is so good, so we picked up one for the casita.  Listened to Mark Lowry's love songs album and the choir and orchestra, Declare His Glory.  Love those songs!  Looking forward to getting the new orchestra release this Sunday. 

Today was the first day of Roy's vacation time.  He got a haircut and also took Buddy for her mani/pedi this afternoon.  Buddy is never really appreciative of that mani/pedi.  Roy is getting some much deserved rest now.  Think he is watching all his Castles that has been DVR'd. 

Back inside from casita where I spilled almost a whole bottle of Diet Coke.  I was cleaning up DC as quickly as possible because that bedroom still has carpet.  We were talking the other day that eventually we are having hardwoods put in the two guest bedrooms.  Not a high priority but a priority none the less.  Finished up the last of my organizing and as soon as I finish eating dinner, I am heading back out that way. 

I've had that traditional Thanksgiving hymn on my mind.  We even sang it in elementary school, probably isn't sung there anymore.  Maybe it can be heard at very traditional churches on Thanksgiving Sunday.

1.      Come, ye thankful people, come,
        raise the song of harvest home;
        all is safely gathered in,
        ere the winter storms begin.
        God our Maker doth provide
        for our wants to be supplied;
        come to God's own temple, come,
        raise the song of harvest home.
2.      All the world is God's own field,
        fruit as praise to God we yield;
        wheat and tares together sown
        are to joy or sorrow grown;
        first the blade and then the ear,
        then the full corn shall appear;
        Lord of harvest, grant that we
        wholesome grain and pure may be.

3.      For the Lord our God shall come,
        and shall take the harvest home;
        from the field shall in that day
        all offenses purge away,
        giving angels charge at last
        in the fire the tares to cast;
        but the fruitful ears to store
        in the garner evermore.
4.      Even so, Lord, quickly come,
        bring thy final harvest home;
        gather thou thy people in,
        free from sorrow, free from sin,
        there, forever purified,
        in thy presence to abide;
        come, with all thine angels, come,
        raise the glorious harvest home.
I looked up info on the author of this hymn.  Very interesting that this man Henry Alford.

To the person in the pew, Henry Alford is best known as the author of the Thanksgiving hymn "Come Ye Thankful People Come." Among scholars, he is better known for his commentary on the Greek New Testament, on which he labored for eighteen years. He did much of this work while carrying on the duties of a vicar to the small parish of Wymeswold. It had been neglected and he rebuilt it, visiting every soul in his keeping. One of his major undertakings was a series of Sunday afternoon sermons in which he taught through books of the Bible, explaining their meaning. He had a knack for explaining things in a way the simple people could understand.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Riding Along in a Jeep Wrangler

Sooooo, Sequisha is at the Toyota dealership getting some body work done, getting the rear bumper replaced.  This has turned out to be a two month adventure.  While all the back and forth between the insurance company, getting the bumper ordered and scheduled, we thought this might turn out to be a painless process.  Ha!  I live to laugh!  Roy had painstakingly gone through the details with Toyota and with Enterprise Car Rentals because he is a plan man.  So there was lost paperwork and no one from Enterprise at the dealership when we arrived, so we sat there for a little while.  Now, these are the things that usually put me over the edge but since I had been asked to give my devotion from leadership council for Thursday morning Community Bible Study opening, you better believe I had that give thanks attitude going.  Roy was pacing and anytime someone who looked official came by, he would ask them if they were with Enterprise.  Finally, the guy shows up to take us down the street to the Enterprise location offsite.  We crammed ourselves into this tiny Corolla.  Roy was practically laying across the back seat and I was in such a tight space, it looked like I was praying all the way down the Gulf Freeway.  When we arrived at Enterprise, we were told they would get that Corolla all cleaned up for us and we would be on our way.  Oh, no, no....there is a reason we drive a SUV, we are tall and I have bad knees.  Roy was agitated by the time we went into the office again explaining to the staff who could not find our paperwork, that he had talked to them about having a larger car for us and we were willing to pay the extra over the rental stipend.  And then it happened....they made us an offer that I could totally refuse, "what about a mini van?"  Now my outside appearance was rather calm but on the inside of me I was giving thanks to God but also asking if He would intervene because I could not see me driving a mini van and He knows mini vans are my arch nemesis in life.  Frantically, I am thinking, ok, I will make fun of myself having to drive a mini van and I would need to find the stick people store so I could add a few, oh like 19 or so family stick figures to the back of the van window.   About that time a Jeep Wrangler was parked in front of the office and a bunch of the employees of Enterprise were looking inside it.  Roy immediately said, we will take that one...meaning the Jeep.  The man who was helping us  was so surprised to see that Jeep because they rarely got that kind of car at their location.  Those were usually returned to the airport.  He wished us Merry Christmas but inside I was thanking the Lord for providing a Jeep instead of a mini van.  This Jeep is four wheel drive, off-road kind of vehicle.  I'm fixing to take that thing out and get my Duck Dynasty on and get all red neck up in here or be a mudder like Honey Boo Boo.  I chose Duck Dynasty.  We found out later if we had used Enterprise onsite, we would have probably been stuck with the Corolla because Toyota likes them to put you in one of their cars.  We are already smitten, so there is nothing to worry about there.  Last night

Once we got back to the Rancho De Five area, we decided to pick up Roy's car from the Park and Ride, then head over to Lupe's for dinner.  Since Roy and I were now in separate cars I didn't have his help changing lanes because the Jeep has much smaller windows and bad blind spots.  We got separated and Roy saw a Jeep Wrangler with flasher lights on sitting in the middle of a median.  For a few seconds he thought it was me, but the Jeep wasn't gray and black like the one we rented.   When we got home we realized we could put the backseats down and at least get the huge head rests out of the way. 

Now, we have a week off from CBS for the Thanksgiving holidays.  I am so grateful that I was asked to share this morning.  On Tuesday I read my devo because of time constraints and the like but today I just used notes and was able to use yesterday in part of the devotion.  The scripture I used was Psalm 136.  Great one on giving thanks. 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Give Thanks!

This was part of my devo from this morning in leadership council.  I am so reminded that if we stop being thankful and living in gratitude things quickly become evident what being ungrateful looks like.  There is an anger that simmers in us that can erupt into full blown anger when things don't go the way we want them to, when we are inconvenienced, when lines are long, unexpected expenses happen, something in our home or car breaks down,  we become hyper sensitive to words and actions by others and basically we find ourselves out of sorts and unhappy about many things.  No wonder the Psalms are filled with thanksgiving because we need to be reminded of all we are and have by the grace of God. 

Many homes in our neighborhood have had Christmas lights up for several weeks.  One home several streets over still has a few remnants of Halloween decorations in the yard.  The lady across the street has this turkey with a pilgrim hat hanging from one of her trees.  This slightly weird and disturbing decoration is the only Thanksgiving themed yard I've seen.

I am sure that most of us have fall décor adorning the inside of our homes.  I put out all of our fall items on Labor Day weekend because this is my favorite time of year.  With college football games starting and fall colors trimming tables and fireplace mantles, it feels like fall on the inside of our home but  once we step out the door, we are dealt the harsh reality; that the temperature says summer is still here.

 Somewhere between Halloween and Christmas, Thanksgiving is losing out. 

Thanksgiving is diminishing and is being replaced with the emphasis of Black Friday. The Christian view of living a life of giving thanks is being replaced with more emphasis of casting vision, giving leadership and a business mindset to delegate instead of serve. 

I've been thinking a lot about the phrase "give thanks.   We have burlap covered letters that say that on our fireplace mantle.  Those two words are a great reminder of how to live in peace, trust, and security…Give Thanks.  In our study of Genesis we have seen Noah and Abraham give thanks to God by building altars, worshipping and giving thanks.  They acknowledged God's faithfulness and His enduring love by the physical act of building an altar that conveys the deep acknowledgement of thanksgiving in their hearts toward God.  Give thanks! 


When we give, we can only give something that we possess.  I know there have been times that I could not give thanks because I didn't possess gratitude.   I could only give what I did possess which many times included; anger, bitterness, jealousy, selfishness, and entitlement....  There are more I could name but you get the picture.  

My background is one of "secret tests.’" What was supposed to teach my brother and I quick reactions, the ability to not hold anything too tightly and be in charge and in control of situations did nothing but turn us into fearful and cynical children and then into fearful and cynical adults. My brother and I were subjected to secret tests daily.  The test could be over nothing of real importance or it could be multi layered and confusing.  I cannot recall one time that either my brother or I passed a secret test.   It was difficult to ever be in the moment of daily life or when we were away from home to have fun because we worried about what “test” we would return to face.  We didn’t think about thankfulness or gratefulness because we were too worried about making the right choice and the dreadful consequences of the wrong choice.  I thought everyone gave me secret tests, so I gave secret tests and just like me, everyone failed. 

For years because of secret tests, I seldom gave heartfelt thanks to anyone or about anything because anything good that happened to me, I felt it was deserved because of all the mean and cruel things we were experiencing.  If I did give thanks, my thank you was more like a child being prodded by a parent to express thanks for something.... 

In this season of acorn browns with the paprika colored decorations, our desire to give thanks has gone the way of this November holiday.  Overtaken with busyness, the loss of giving thanks is ignored between life, events and obligations.   Many times we don’t give thanks because giving thanks is hard, even in good times.  It can be extremely painful to give thanks in the tough times.  I am so thankful for a godly therapist who helped me learn to give thanks not only in words but she showed me how to live in thankfulness.  When we realize that life is a gift and we are overwhelmed with a sense of gratitude, when we fill every moment with praise for God's goodness and thanks for His generosity...we find wholeness and our hearts increase in their capacity to experience and give love.

Along with seeing Cheryl, I read a book that changed my attitude....shall I go cliché and say changed my attitude into gratitude; Stand Against the Wind by Erwin McManus.  I have included some of his thoughts in the above paragraph but this sentence transformed my way of thinking and living


A Life of Gratitude makes us


Overwhelms us with


And moves us to


Generous lives

Gratitude is central to the entire experience and journey of Christian faith. When we are grateful we experience life with a healthy optimism and when we lack gratitude we move toward pessimism. 


An ungrateful heart always sees what's wrong with life


Gratitude softens our hearts.  It makes us kinder and more patient.  We are more forgiving and legalism is vanquished in gratitude.  To give thanks is more than the 30 days of thanksgiving on Facebook.  To give thanks isn't passive, it's an action.  To give thanks is more than a holiday platitude.  Kirk Franklin tweeted this couple of weeks ago


"I had to make a decision to not just BE thankful, but to LIVE thankful.  I can't just wait for sunny never know when they come."

A little bit of Nancy Leigh DeMoss goes a long way with me, but I love this quote from her book Choosing Gratitude:

I found this to be true: Gratitude is a lot more than jonquils and journaling pages.  Gratitude is a lifestyle.  A hard-fought, grace infused biblical lifestyle."

Monday, November 18, 2013

Sunday Stuff

We went to church this morning.  No freeway closures.  Loved the worship led by Elevate which is the student ministry choir and musicians.  They did a fabulous job leading us to the throne.  I am not one to tear up but the experience they presented was so meaningful.   One of Gregg's points on the Epicureans made me think of the play grocery store.  So after church and LBS which for us stands for Late Breakfast Stop instead of Sunday School, we made a trip to see The Fresh Market.  It took the place of the play grocery store.  I would totally be buying dinner there if we still lived in the area.  Roy had their chicken pot pie for dinner and said it was the best, even better than Rice's, which I thought was the best of all time.   I didn't even recognize the store, it looks awesome and a lot of different choices even more so that Rice.  We bought some tea and cookies.  Last night I had a cup of tea and a heath bar cookie crisp.  Delightful!  So glad of the reminder of the play grocery store. 

Sunday afternoon was a total laze fest.  Roy went to work out when Shaub came into the Texans game.  I watched till the bitter end but watching was only made palatable with a good book.  This weekend I found a couple of books that will be very helpful with my artful journaling.  Great ideas that are easy and one doesn't have to be an artist.  I am top drawer when it comes to stick figures. 

We had planned on having Christmas lights installed on our house, but as time winds down toward Thanksgiving, it is getting more expensive.  So, we are going to just go with what we have with a few new additions from last year and a few new things this year.  We went to Lowe's on Friday looking for strands of battery operated lights.  Several catalogs are offering them but wanted to see if we could find them locally.  There are solar lights, so we went with some of those choices.  Hopefully, I will not have to stand outside with a flashlight to charge up the solar battery if there is a string of cloudy days.  Lowe's has their Christmas stuff outside in the covered area of the garden dept.  So it was a whole lot of fun looking for Christmas decorations while it felt like summer.  On Saturday we found a few more items at Target.  Still all solar though. 

I am so thankful for a tree on the green space next to our house.  It is one of the closest trees to our yard and it is the only tree that has fall foliage.  All the rest of the trees are green.  I can sit here in the study and in the reading room that we converted from being a dinning room and see that tree.  What a gift!  Even when I know it is in the 80's, it feels like fall from the inside. 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Saturday Night...Reflections

Roy is ensconced watching college football.  No LSU game this weekend.  We are rejoicing with Auburn and pulling for Baylor. 

As per his usual practice, Roy went to Bible study and afterwards stopped at the Enterprise Rental Car next to HEB.  Sequisha gets her new bumper this week and the dealership and Roy have been haggling with Nationwide on the rental car.  He was checking with the Enterprise close to us if we could switch out cars in case we end up with something as small as a mini cooper.  Yes, people six feet tall and taller fit into those small cars.  Our reasoning, this is why we drive a larger car, so the rental should at least be a SUV.  I told Roy we just need to ask for God's favor when we take Sequisha in.  While he was close by, Roy ran into HEB and picked up a few groceries. 

We headed over to Katy Mills Mall later in the morning because Books a Million was having a friends and family additional 20% off everything sale.  Glad Roy has been working out because we came out of the store with two rather heavy bags.  We lunched at Lupe's and then went to Target with the rest of Rancho De Five for a few things. 

This week in CBS we find ourselves in Genesis 19.  All kinds of stuff going on up in there.  So there is Lot sitting at the gate of the city, which means he's a mover and shaker...a high powered rancher...he has himself some moolah.   What Lot doesn't know is, Abraham has interceded for him with the Lord.  Sitting at the gate, with no clue that he would have been swept away and destroyed with everyone else if not for Uncle Abe helping him out again.  I think Lot would be the "businessman" in today's world that would be most attractive to the church.  He has the look, he has the leadership but he hasn't a clue.  Yep, that's usually how the church universal likes 'em.  Maybe, Abraham wouldn't be so attractive to be on committees and the like.  Many times we are more drawn to what they have more than who they are and what they believe.  Looking for some Kool-Aid drinkers sometimes...those who won't rock the boat, agree with everything and then help fund whatever is the latest thing.  You can read a lot of informative blogs that give the skinny on this kind of thing.  I have no practical experience with this...just a thought though in the study of Abraham and Lot.  Some of the questions in this week's homework really made us look into the reality of how Sodom, his daughter's fiancés, and the people of Zoar really viewed Lot and there doesn't seem to be a whole lot of respect for him.  I love the name Zoar, it means little place. 

I was talking with a friend this week who reads the old Monablog.  It was so encouraging that she told me she loved reading about this season of life for me.  The 50's has been a lot of fun in the midst of crisis, chaos, fatigue and departures.  The decade I was dreading turned out to be a lot more freeing.  That first year of being fifty though, I had my doubts this was going to be anything good.  I experienced deliberating depression.  I am a pull myself up by the bootstraps kind of girl, but nothing...was working or helping.  I got up, got dressed, went to work, came home and went to bed.  Everything was done by rote.  I could turn on personality but as soon as I could, I turned it off.  Lots of therapy and lots of patience and love from Roy finally pulled me out of that pit and thankfully, I didn't take the drugs that would help take the edge off.   I had a cancer scare when I had a hysterectomy.  Roy underwent all kinds of tests because his blood work gave us a scare of a diagnosis of Lou Gehrig's Disease.   Praise the Lord, he didn't have it!  I had a heart attack, a minor stroke and viral cardiomyopathy.  It was a long five and half year heart journey but I feel like I have made it over to the other side.  My knees are responding well to the all these things, in the midst of difficult days and sleepless has been good.  The Lord changed so many things in me that otherwise wouldn't have happened and it would have not been my choice to learn this way, but I rejoice that I did.  I'm thankful there are a lot less toxic people to deal with now and our lives are enriched with good friends and people who genuinely care and don't play games.  We are blessed and so thankful for God's goodness and faithfulness. 

Buddy has almost stopped progress in getting anything written.  She is all over me, pawing at my face, purring up a storm and trying her best to fit underneath my neck.  Oh yea, maybe she is wanting me to include that she came into our lives  in this last decade. 

Friday, November 15, 2013

Buzzards, Brunch and Darling

Our neighborhood has two resident buzzards that spend quite a bit of searching time over the green space.  They sit high up on the electrical towers seeking something to devour.  I get a little nervous when I'm walking on the green space and they are perched on their observation post.  Never want to give them the impression that knee weakness might make me easy prey.  When the buzzards are around I am on point to protect our doves.  Our fence at times looks like a shooting gallery because of the doves lined up on it.  I have no clue if buzzards are like hawks that snatch their snare off the ground and carry them away.  I must get on Google later for research. 

I love my core group in Bible study!  These are awesome women who study and do their homework but I so appreciate their desire to talk their questions through and to know the Lord more.  Each one is so helpful and caring.  Yesterday was our brunch day and in addition to their desire to learn, is their great ability to cook.  We had thematic brunch yesterday of baked potatoes, along with deviled eggs, salad and several choice desserts.   Loved how brunch day fell on Genesis 18 day, when Abraham served the three visitors a delicious feast.  Took the role of a servant with them and then walked with God as He told Abraham what He was about to check out and do.  Abraham served and God treated Abraham like a close friend.  We have discussed this week Abraham sitting at the entrance of his tent in the heat of the day.  The main consensus was he was looking for God, I think he was at the entrance of the tent in the heat of the day because....he was living with a post menopausal woman...who is having heat flashes in the hottest part of the day and her emotions are all over the place.  Probably the entrance of the tent back then is what is now called a man cave. 

After Bible study, I ran a few errands and came home.  I was busy with a project and boom a wave of wooziness hit me like a load of frozen turkeys.  I felt as if I had been drugged and now I wonder if a juice drink I had at Whole Foods has papaya in it because my reaction was very papaya effect like.  I went to bed and took a nap and didn't awake refreshed but still groggy and woozy.  I had planned on going to Girl's Night Out in downtown Katy last night but I had to punt that big time.  I pretty much camped out on the couch for the rest of the evening, took a shower at 9:00 and went to bed. 

When we were in Blowing Rock in September, at one of the little shops I picked up a magazine; Darling.  No, I am not calling you darling, that is the name of the magazine.  Now one would suppose this is a southern magazine with a whole lot of Christian emphasis.  No, it isn't.  The uniqueness of the magazine is the recognition of "one size fits all" mentality is a false mentality.  Therefore, the articles are geared to about seven different types of personalities, not just seven different types of women's personalities.  I have enjoyed going through the articles and I'm thinking of ordering the next one that will be published in December. 

Now, I'm going out to seize the beauty of the day. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013


The last time I had studied extensively anything about the Patriarchs was in Bible study on Tuesday nights with Beth Moore.  It was the same year that Katrina and Rita happened and as Roy and I headed east to eventually turn north and everyone else was heading west, we talked about Abraham and how our journey opposite of everyone else felt very leaving Ur to parts unknown, although we knew we were heading toward Shreveport.  Well, honestly, that felt like parts unknown to me.  Fast forward to right now where we are studying Genesis and we are smack dab in the middle of Abraham's life with the soon coming birth of his son Isaac.  I have learned so many new things within this study and I have really pondered and considered so many scenarios of what and what didn't happen.  Chapter 18 isn't as wild as 17 but chapter 19 is looking to hold onto some wildness for sure.

When I left Leadership Council a little after 12:00, it was still pleasant and the cool front had not come out Rancho De Five way.  When I came out of Kroger, oh yes, there was a definite chill to the air and the wind had picked up considerably.  Outdoors really looks like winter and I am thrilled for all of this.  I even wore new boots with my jeans stuffed inside them.  I have become a boot wearer.  I was contemplating this new boot fascination and why now.  It came to me, with my knees feeling better and with me feeling better, boots don't feel weighty or cumbersome.  How fun was it wearing boots today?  Very fun! 

Now I am doing something I almost never do.  I am having a cup of coffee in the afternoon.  Coffee time for me is early morning or late at night, rarely in-between.  Maybe the boots are making me feel all trendy like or something.  Although the whole coffee feeling scene and Starbucks runs have kind of run their course and had their day.   Maybe the boots are saying baby boot steps girl and if my boots were talking instead of being made for walking...well I would be on The View or something. 

Along with the Fannie Flagg book, I am also reading Jesus Feminist, Exploring God's Radical Notion That Women Are People, Too by Sarah Bessey.  I like it so far.  Don't judge until you read it yourself.  It is not the book that you think it might be. 

My order from Sugarboo Designs came on Saturday.  I cannot tell you how much I love Sugarboo.  I love the vintage look of the paper and the quotes are not the standard ones we see all the time.  I think my love of quotes came from my mother's father.  I never really knew him and only slightly remember him but he had notebooks and five year diaries filled with quotes he loved and newspaper articles that meant something to him.  As a child I loved to sit there at his desk and look through those books and understand who he was and what motivated him to think and ponder.  I love me a good, thought provoking quote. 

That fireplace in the living room is calling out to me, so I must go with book and coffee in hand. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

A Just As I Am Weekend Catch Up

Thank you veterans!  Thank you to those who are currently serving.  We are grateful for your sacrifices. 

We had a totally laid back weekend and it was just what we needed.  Oh, the LSU loss wasn't a highlight but it was not totally unexpected.  Alabama's fake punt pretty much turned the momentum of the game.  It is looking like a probable loss to A&M.  Oh well, just isn't LSU's year in football.  We still enjoy rooting for them.  Loved the Baylor win!  In football, that was the highlight even though they played on Thursday night, not Saturday. 

There were several projects taken off the to do list.  We changed the A/C filters and batteries in the smoke detectors, finished up some trimming and mulching in the front yard, and a whole bunch of little things that are too mundane to mention...oh like mulch is that big of a deal.  Roy pulled a quad muscle, so that project ending injury curtailed Roy's involvement on Sunday afternoon wrapping up the to do's. 

Yesterday afternoon I was looking through some old books to use in my artful journaling projects.  It is nearly impossible for me to use any book that belonged to family members, not that I think the books are valuable but more for sentimental reasons.  If a book that was published in the late 1800s has made it this far, it deserves to stay on the bookshelf of honor.  I found an old civics book and I began to look through was perfect for what I wanted to do.  Then at the front of the book was my mom's handwritten name and address and I broke down in tears.  Thursday was the two year anniversary of my mother's home going and on Thursday I took some time to reflect upon my mother's life.  It was also time to be thankful to the Lord for having a mom who loved the Lord, loved to have fun and was so content to stay around home.  That staying around home is becoming a greater part of who I am these days.  Didn't cry any on Thursday but on Sunday to see her caught me by surprise that I would be so moved by her name written in a civics book.  I miss her but I have had more dreams where she makes an appearance or is a main character in the dream.  That makes me so very happy because it feels like time spent with her. 

I started reading Fannie Flagg's new book this weekend and I have laughed out loud several times which only makes Roy ask, what's so funny.  I used to try and explain why a book was making me laugh, but something gets lost in the translation.  I think the title of the book is The Last Reunion of the Filling Station Girls.  I am horrible at remembering titles and too ensconced at the desk right now to get up and check the title. 

While looking through old books yesterday, I came across a book published in the early 1900's, The Stories Behind a Hundred and One Hymns.  Over half of the hymns in the book I have never heard of and Fanny Crosby wasn't the only prolific woman hymn writer.  A woman wrote the most used and over used invitation hymn, Just As I Am.  The hymn writer was an invalid and was saddened with the fact she felt useless for kingdom work.   So, she wrote the words and someone put them to music.  Little did she know that she was being used in kingdom work because back in the day that was the song that pulled on your heart that eventually pulled at your feet to walk the aisle to the front of the church. 

Since I need to finish up some things around here, it feels like a just as I am kind of makeup and not going to mess with my hair.  Knowing that probably just scared a few of you to walk the aisle away from this just as I am woman today.  That Roy, he's a lucky guy. 

Saturday, November 9, 2013

What a Week!

This has been an unusually busy week.  I've had so much fun meeting friends for lunch and or dinner.  In the in between I've been doing homework, going to leadership council and Bible study, staying out of Consuela's way and working on a few projects.

Tuesday evening Dena picked me up to eat dinner, then go to Katy Mills Mall.  We decided on Chinese food, which was really good and then headed over to the mall.  There was something there she wanted to purchase and while she was checking into that I wondered over to Books A Million.  I know, I just surprised everyone with that news.  Wednesday morning I was up bright and early to head into Houston to meet Lisa P.  Love lunch with Lisa at the Lux.  We helped open up with the lunch crowd and we shut it down with the last remaining late lunchers.   I brought some Scuppernong Jelly for Lisa since we know that Rhoda, from our favorite movie The Bad Seed, sits under the scuppernong arbor several times during the movie.  The jelly is made with scuppernong wine, cane sugar and pectin.  Your toast has a little bite to it with that jelly.  I also brought her something from The Nord's new line of products of their brand; a red and black Nordstrom tea towel that has a hint of art deco in the design.  After Lux, we headed to the Rack....I am so singing Whitney Houston's version of I Go to the Rock, right now while writing.  After a little shopping I headed back out west.  There were more errands to run and then a little time to be killed waiting for Consuela to finish up.  Roy had wanted to go out for dinner Wednesday night, but I was so very, very tired.  He brought home pizza and we opted for dinner out on Thursday evening.  Thursday morning was Bible study and afterwards I met Mimi for lunch...yes, there seems to be a pattern here.  I came home for a phone call, man, it has been a long time since I have said that, but it had to do with my monitor and cell phones don't work as well.  I came home to find the console table I had ordered.  There was a little assembly but it went well.  Actually, this has two tables one is a bit smaller.  They were such a deal and I have tried several times to get this on Joss and Main, but they have run out of them before I could get one ordered.  They look nice but I need to rearrange the lamp situation or find a smaller lamp.  That evening Dena met Roy and me at Tony's.  Friday morning I had an appointment at Emmanuel and had a second blessing of seeing Susan K there too.  We both go to Stevie, so it was kind of party time.  It was early dismissal day out here on Friday, so all the errands I needed to run, were done rather quickly because it was like Christmas in the parking lots...and when I say Christmas I don't mean in it in a good way.  Roy and several friends had lunch at Midway, so he brought home brisket that we will have for dinner tonight as we watch the LSU/Bama game.  We are hoping the good LSU team shows up tonight. 

Is it just me or are Christmas lights up much earlier this year?  It is probably due to the fact that lights on the house used to be installed by the dad with the kids helping, now I think light hanging is outsourced.  And to be able to get all the houses done, some have lights up now.  We were planning on doing that but I think we are going to stay with our original plan from last year and do lights around the sidewalk.  Then we have several Christmas outdoor pieces that we bought last year at Brookwood. 

Hopefully, we will finish up mulching the flowerbeds today.  There are several lights that need to be replaced outdoors and the A/C filters need to be changed.  Oh and smoke detector batteries need to be changed.  Going to be life on the ladder this afternoon. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Another Fun Tuesday...

We kicked off the season of fall back last night with taco soup.  Nothing says fall and winter like hearty, delicious soups.  It wasn't all that cool yesterday but everything but the temps cooperated.  We had rain off and on all day and almost dark by 5:30....LOVE IT!  I know all of you who drove home in the dead of night at 5:45 did not love it.  Besides, it is only till March 9th of next year before we go back on daylight saving time. 

After studying Genesis 17 this week I believe that this chapter in the OT and the woman with the issue of blood in the NT might just be the least taught or preached from the pulpit chapters in the Bible.  It's kind of like if you are ever in mixed company, throw back term from the 60's but I am not talking about mixed bathing or swimming, and some guy gets hit in the Genesis 17 area on TV, all the men kind of do this synchronized winch and groan.  And a preacher man will tip toe around the woman with the issue of blood because just like we don't totally understand the Genesis 17 type hit, no man will ever truly understand what it is like to be like the woman with the issue of blood.  Just saying.....

Last night I completed the changing of the seasonal clothes in the closet and in the dresser.  I have yet to find my flannel jammie stash.  I wonder if Roy has anything to do with that?  Or is it just I have put them somewhere and I know not where to find them.  Not cold enough for them but it does make me wonder where in the heck they are.  I have found all kinds of other things like gloves and scarfs and necklaces and it wouldn't be complete without finding a few blank journals because I think all journals with narrow lines needs to come home with me. 

We had leadership meeting this morning but I had to leave early to meet Laurie M for lunch at The Nord.  It has been a long, long time since I have lunched at The Nord.  We had a great time over crab bisque and a salad for Laurie and me with my usual crab stack.  It was nearly 2:00 when we said our goodbyes only I looked at the Home dept for just a bit before heading to the prairie.  Such cute, cute things.  Last year the Nord didn't do a special Christmas ornament, but they did one this year.  So that has been taken care of. 

We heard a heart warming and eye opening devo this morning in leadership council.  And I think that God has just inserted a new Psalm into the Bible, Psalm 15.  Have I read it before and nothing resonated?  It spoke volumes to me this morning and just to make sure it is really in the Bible, I just looked at it again just now.  I use the NLT but The Message painted a picture that made it short, succinct and bottom line.  Love how the Word is always alive. 

It has stopped raining so guess I can go out and bring in the trash cans.  I figure if Roy can haul them out there when they are filled, I can bring them back to the garage when they are empty. 

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Sunday Mulch and Memories Vespers

The first full evening after fall back.  It is dusk and it is almost 5:35.  I love it.  The wind is bringing a little bit of chill to the air.  Earlier this afternoon, we worked on assembling a wooden cabinet that doubles as a litter pan receptacle.  I hope Buddy appreciates all the hard work her mom and dad put into the assembling process.  Neither Roy nor I are gifted in this way.  After a false start, a reassembling and Roy finally seeing the big picture that the drawer is for scoops and such and is found in the top part of the cabinet.  Roy thought it was a drawer that doubles as the litter pan.  Anyway, no one got hurt or mad or dare I say childish during the whole procedure.  We've assembled and carried that baby in, loaded up the litter pan with fresh litter and we're just waiting for Buddy to wake up from her early evening nap.  Buddy is not a fan of change. 

Loved having the extra hour to sleep and with that extra time we were actually able to get up and go to church.  Not a close by neighborhood church, but the church where we are members.  The music was so worshipful and heartwarming.  Those words sung by all were healing and inspiring.  Our church is so blessed with great music leadership.  We were looking for a friend and Roy thought he saw her going the  opposite way, so we turned back trying to find her.  Along the way we got to see and speak to so many friends.  When we couldn't find her, we headed over to Dayspring, her Life Bible Study class, and found her there.  I was so encouraged to run into Carole Lewis, little shout out to Carole on Monablog.  Roy and I went to Life Bible Study at Le Peep today.  It has been too long since I've had the cinnamon pecan pancakes.  I could eat breakfast food for every meal.  Then we stopped at Lowe's to pick up more mulch.  We should have those guys come and do our mulch that do the mulching for Rancho De Five.  The mulch is blown in from these huge trucks.  Ah yes, the fragrance of mulch filled the air around the Rancho for most of the weekend.   After our assembling of the litter box, we were able to get mulch out onto two flowerbeds.  We will conclude the mulch portion of our program later this week.

Last night after working on Genesis homework, I went out to the courtyard and turned on the fireplace.  It was perfect temps to sit and watch a fire.  Neighbors nearby were setting off a beautiful firework display that filled the sky.  Almost as good as New Years or the Fourth of July.  Many times when Indian couples get married, a firework show is a part of the celebration.  I looked up into the sky and thought, it is a good thing God told Abram when he did that Abram's descendants would outnumber the stars...cause last night Abram would have had made five or six descendants if he lived out here on the prairie.  Our Genesis homework is in Chapter 17 this week and it is rather funny that CBS is trying every which way to impress the importance of covenant without using the word circumcision.  Might be a very interesting discussion this week. 

This past week I have been thinking of all the people that took an interest in me when I was much younger.  There was the Sunday School teacher that taught me how to prank, a needed biblical asset to have.  There were all those teachers from church that my mother called as soon as I promoted to schedule a meeting.  It would just save time later on because I could be rather disruptive in class, double barreled because I actually studied the lesson.  Hey, that's the best way to disrupt, use the teacher's words.  There were those ladies who worked with the youth that took us clear across town to kick butt in church volleyball at Glen Rose Baptist Church, I think that's where we played.  We would load up in the station wagons and roll over to I 45 scared to death because we thought we were in a bad part of town.  I have no clue if it was but it was far away and those youth ladies always gave us careful instruction to leave the cars and go straight into the gym.  We had a pretty good church VB team and we won the league several times.  I started reading the book When We Were on Fire and I think that is why I've been remembering so many good things from back in the day youth days. 

Thinking I might need another fireside chat this evening and then watch some of the football game.  This is the most wonderful time of the year....

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Autumnal Awe

What a beautiful day!  I keep trying to find reasons to be outside and I'm getting really near to weed the back flowerbed again.  Only, I know better than to do that kind of stuff when Roy is not around.  But the bird feeder is clean again and the bird bath could use a once over.  It shouldn't be angry birds, it should be messy birds.  Roy has taken Buddy to the vet for her annual check up and her monthly mani/pedi.  She is not a happy camper but she should be happy that she is not being left to be a camper.  This year when we go out of town we have a house/Buddy sitter.  Buddy won't have so much PTSD when we and she come home from our respective trips. 

I was so productive yesterday.  I got a lot done that I have been procrastinating on doing.  Dena and I had planned a day of shopping yesterday but electrical work and microwave adjustment drew the day out, so we didn't hit the road until 6:30.  We did the first most important thing, eat dinner.  We drove over to Tony's to fuel up for shopping.  There was only time to go to World Market and Whole Foods afterwards, but it was fun.  The World Market in Houston was just plain old weird, but the one out here is stocked full of interesting items from all around the world sans the strange customers.  When I went there on Tuesday, one of the sales clerks kind of creeped me out.  She just seemed to be everywhere I went in the store and had a comment for everything I was looking at.  I was waiting for her to ask me, "Are you my mother?"  She was just trying to be helpful but it was a bit over the top.  She wasn't there last night, phew...!  Then Dena and I went to Whole Foods so she could get some gingerbread scones to take to Baytown for her mother.  I also introduced her to peeled oranges.  Before going into Whole Foods we walked into a rain shower that showed up unexpectedly and didn't stick around.  It still is a wonder to see rain on a continuous basis. 

Going to go support local shops this morning.  Lots going on and one of the best parts of fall; falling back is tonight.  This is the beginning of the best time of year with evening arriving earlier and the temps arriving a bit cooler.  This is the short span of the year I don't mind cooking because I am a fan of fall foods.  The sunrises and the sunsets are spectacular in color.  We have one tree on the green space whose leafs are actually turning into fall colors.  It's exciting!   Most of the Halloween decorations have been put away in our neighborhood.  Now is the time to focus on Thanksgiving, not just the holiday but the very act and joy of being thankful.  Thankfulness cures a lot of what ails us.