Wednesday, May 31, 2017


Today was bone density scan day and it was the easiest medical day ever. Now we wait for results. I was done in about ten minutes so I was off to other destinations and points.

Last night I was at a friends home for homemade banana ice cream. They had invited others to join in the fun so it was a lovely evening out on the porch as we solved world problems and then discussed health issues to the point that we became old people we were so enthralled with our discussions. Nah, we stayed young minded, but just barely. One of the things we talked about was going back in time to live a simpler life. I think I might have been the only dissenter because you really can't go back and it wasn't simpler back then either. Really, like I once read on a Beth Moore blog, her grandmother told her she liked the modern days. Life was hard, with less time helping appliances and scratching out a living....well, it was just dang hard. I think I agree with Beth's grandmother. Really, I would be dead maybe several times over because I have been privileged to experience modern day medicine that changed my life course. Life might have been simpler because it took a lot out of one, which means there is little energy left for fun or getting into trouble. When you think about how long it took to wash clothes or to fix a meal or to build a wasn't simpler at all. Compared to Houston life here is simpler for many reasons. One is living in an area that isn't as populated makes things a lot easier. The pace of life is slower and even then it isn't all that easy to enjoy. Six weeks with this tooth thing just floored me cause I knew if I was in Houston I would have been squeezed in for an appointment to remedy the problem. It was hard not to think about that but then the end result is more satisfying that having a temporary crown glued on but having a tooth "built" to handle the load as we wait for the nerve to make the curve. Life is simpler in that produce grown locally is so much easier to obtain and this girl loves a good produce stand. Farm to Table restaurants aren't just fancy places but mom and pop places that have been in business for decades. Yep, it is a change for this freeway driving girl to be on the back roads and those roads have been built without any shoulder or extra room. If a big truck is coming toward you, you are hugging the side of the road for dear life. Out here in the country there are very few if any bike lanes. The roads are yellow double stripes and just this year it is legal to pass a bicyclist to ease around them. A tractor may slow you down but it doesn't really make you mad. The scenery is filled with so much to behold. The colors along the roads are in a changing time, from the white blossoms of the wild blackberries to the pink rambling wild roses that now cover culverts and line the road.

Sadly, I think progress is happening across the road. The herd of cows has been getting smaller by the week and I just looked out across to not find any cows out in the pasture. There is a bulldozer up on the hill and it has cleared out some of the trees and is smoothing out the ground. This probably means houses will be starting to be built soon enough. That has been happening farther up the road and while the economy is good here, people are taking advantage. I have suspected this change of events would happen but I was hoping it wouldn't be this quick.
After I wrote the last paragraph I drove around to see if the cows were truly gone. It looked to be true. When I got back my neighbor was over at her mom's and we hadn't had a chance to visit since I returned from Texas. We talked about what could be happening across the street and she came over to look at the porch. They are thinking about doing something to their back porch. When I came inside and then looked out the front window, there were still a few cows. A truck pulled up near the barn and put feed in the feed troughs and those cows came running. It was not the usual guy I have seen there the past few years. This caused me to do some research last night on land around the area. There are three planned communities, one close to the river, one down the way (expensive home and lots in a gated community) and one more in Leicester. With the widening of the highway, you knew this would be coming. For fun I looked at houses for sale in Madison County and when I told Roy this morning I had found one I really liked, he said to me what he always says when I have expensive ideas, get a job....get a good job."

Well, the day is moving on just like progress in the country. Hopefully, it won't go fast but if it does I will still enjoy the life here even with new neighbors. Face it, it is hard to replace as good of neighbors as those cows have been.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Rain, Hair and Beauty

The afternoon has turned to cool temps and overcast skies. I think the rain is over pretty much for the most part. Buddy and I are being cooled by a breeze and Buddy is entertained by the various birds that fly close to the porch. Earlier this afternoon when it was rather warm, she sat at the front door indicating her desire for a porch visit. She won't stay out here by herself yet because if for any reason I need to go back into the house, she is pretty much my shadow. I love that she has discovered her new bed. It has taken her a while to cozy up to it. The birds are singing with such vigor, so maybe they are happy the rain has gone away for a time.

I listened to Second Baptist Houston on the radio this morning. Rev Young has been preaching on heaven. It was a good sermon. Of course the music in between the programs is what I like best. I downloaded some instrumental music today because if Alexa is being temperamental I can play music in the background.

One day,Tuesday, the power went off but our generator kicked in. Having no clue with propane and propane accessories, I asked Roy to look at the gauge to see if we were low. A little Carolina wren had built a nest under the cover protecting the gauge. Roy had to move the nest a bit and a little tiny egg rolled to the ground. You might as well put a knife through my heart at that moment. Then when the little wren came back to the now messed with nest and missing egg, she was distraught. She went into the nest several more times and then flew away. This wren was my morning wake up call singing so early in the morning. She has left and I am so sad. We never intended to harm but lesson learned. I mean really, what a smart little bird. Out of the elements, pretty much protected from a snake but it didn't figure on a propane gauge check.
Well, I was wrong, we received a little more rain yesterday afternoon. Nice cooling rain that makes porch gliding so enjoyable. As I expected, yesterday was a totally ensconced day, not even going to choir practice. The afternoon included a short nap. The Godfather I and II were on TV last night and I watched a little of both of those movies but AMC has way too many commercials which extends a movie began in the evening into the early morning.

FB has been full of pictures of a much looked forward to day. Jason Swiggart pastors HFBC's Cypress campus. They have been meeting in a school for four years. Yesterday, they celebrated their last Sunday in the school by remembering all the good things God has done and last night the lighting of the outdoor cross on the front of the new building was celebrated. Jason is the minister I worked for at First Baptist. His sweet spot is people and he looks like he is doing well with a job of ministry in the midst of Cypress. Many of the people there now were in Young Marrieds when he was over that portion of ministry at First Baptist. It is a joy to see all of this. Chambers, their oldest son, just graduated from Baylor. He was my first assistant when he was in the third grade.

The backyard is quiet now which is usually a good indicator that the feeder is empty. It will be a little later for me getting out there to remedy that situation for them. Today is treatment day with the hair product from France...just like the coneheads. It is a thickening product for hair, an oil left in for 10 minutes, then after shampooing, a liquid product goes into the hair, no rinsing. I can kind of feel a difference but I don't know. The essential oil does smell good so that's a plus. The stylist at the salon says I need this, I'm not too sure but this is much better than the every other day stuff she suggested. Oh there was a day that I would have dedicated that much time to my hair but meh.

Because there were two years with drought, this spring has been especially colorful in the hue of green. The grass and trees are verdant. With that backdrop the rich colors from flowers and ground cover provide an exclamation point of beauty. Think I will get out for a bit and enjoy this beauty until the clouds gather once again to provide abundance. The weather guys are saying rain and storms later today.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

I'm Back.....

It has been a little bit of time since I have blogged partly due to being busy but more so because of the loss of a blog post that I had worked on for quite some time. It was a favorite and it seemed to be more than just this is what we have been doing but it held some descriptive thoughts and feelings. When I came back to the post to publish was gone. Not in draft file, not anywhere, not here or there...Gone. The intense taste of discouragement grabbed me and I had no desire to come, sit before this screen and write again. Several days ago the stirring returned to write and and knowing to release the melancholy of loss would be most helpful. Sensing deep within my spirit that maybe all along that post was meant for me and not to share. So this Sunday morning, taking a sabbatical Sunday, I sit before the screen, with KHCB playing in the background and cup of coffee by my side. Buddy has decided not to come downstairs as of yet. She is ensconced in her blanket dreaming cat dreams.

The late night storms weren't as bad here as some we've had before. Lots of lightning and thunder but the rain seemed to be on the lighter side. Happy for the rain to help the newly planted azaleas that Roy put in this week as well as some knockout roses. We also planted some sunflower seeds that we harvested from last years flowers. I think I'll add a few more plants to the raised bed just in case none of the sunflowers come up. This past week has been rather rainy and we used the opportunity to do some projects that we've had on the back burner because good weather and roads calling out to us enabled us to go along our merry way. Roy put together this cheap, pressed wood bookcase with cubby holes, for things in the garage. Lots of parts for this "simple" bookcase and it took us all afternoon to get it together. We took the opportunity to clean out all the sawdust, obvious sawdust, from the porch and deck construction. Once the weather cleared we got some trees trimmed whose branches were obscuring our vision getting out onto the road. Saturday morning we gathered it all together and took it to the dump with so many other of our new best friends. The line was long but it moved along quickly. This week also included an A/C checkup and having a locksmith come to the house. Our front door lock and knob have been problematic. You never close the front door all the way because even unlocked, you were locked out. We were so pleased with the work done and we had some additional work done. We felt productive in getting things knocked off the to do list.

We went to the Biltmore Estate after a delicious lunch at The Moose Cafe Wednesday. We went for the ice cream and for a quick trip inside Traditions. The skies opened up and lots of rain fell. We waited out the worst of it with a group of senior citizens...we don't think of ourselves as part of that group unless there is a discount or close parking involved. I have noticed in past trips to the estate the tour bus groups pretty much resemble each other in that the ladies wear white pants...why? White pants are a magnet for stainage and messiness. Seems like most of the sightseeing is spent waiting and looking for the bus. These groups are traveling about the country, seeing things in fifteen minutes and using the rest of the tour time to wait for much anticipated busses. This group sent out a woman with an umbrella to scout out the situation...her report, no bus was found. So, they sat there staring off into space. The rain let up and we were up and out into the fresh rain cleansed air. They remained glued to their chairs, eyes fixed on the horizon waiting for that bus to take them to the next fifteen minutes of sightseeing. After we had made our purchases, we walked back to the truck and my phone rang but when I answered I couldn't hear anyone. This happened three times and I told Roy, I think this must be from the dentist office. Kind of makes me think of Paul's thorn cause this has been an issue.  Once we got to the truck I recalled the number and sure enough, it was. They had a cancellation at 11:00 and if I didn't mind waiting about an hour after my cleaning appointment, they would be able to work on my broken tooth and fill two cavities. Hallelujah! Not having to wait until August for this to happen and to have the tooth worked on before meeting with an oral surgeon in a couple of weeks...this made me so happy. It had almost been six weeks since the tooth broke, then maybe with an unnecessary root canal, with packing that only lasted six weeks, I was thrilled for a little closure. Love the dentist and his staff. They are so friendly and funny. Even with as much as I talk, keeping my mouth open for several hours was a little difficult. My cavities were in the front of my mouth. So with all the novocaine, my lips remained numb for several hours. I could not drink anything, out of a glass, bottle or straw without getting stuff all over me. It was rather comical. Because I hadn't had anything to drink since before my 9:20 appointment, afib made an unwanted appearance but it was soon dispelled by hydrating and getting some magnesium into me.

The past month has been busy and I am looking forward to a little down time in the coming days. I will make a drive by run to the imaging center for my bone density test on Tuesday. I kind of think I know where it is but want to make sure.

After a little rain, with no growth showing, this morning it is a different story about the sunflowers. The little flower bed has a lot growing, peaking through the soil. When they get a little bigger I might need to transfer and replant some of the plants. This makes me extremely happy.

I could blog more but y'all have to be tired reading all of this. Hopefully, you were able to read and not fall asleep.

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Too Much Fun...Too Much Fun To Blog

It has been a while since I have written on the blog but having so much fun put a crimp in my time and nothing was written here. Lisa P came to NC and of course fun, laughter, conversation, chatting and solving the world's problems were all done while she visited. Her plane landed in the late night hours in Charlotte. We spent the night at a hotel there and we were up and on the road early to meet Brenda and Vivian at the Inn on the Biltmore Estate. We ate lunch on the Veranda at the Inn. Perfect temps to take it all in. The food, delicious. The scenery, breathtaking. I think Vivian was a little tired and wasn't interested in shopping at the Inn or later running around to view the sheep, geese and whatever else we could find to take a million pictures of. So we bid adieu to she and Brenda. Lisa and I had a front row seat to the sheep and little baby lambs that filled the fields near the lamb birthing barn. We took tons of pics and videos. Then we drove around the lagoon to watch the geese and all their young uns'. The day began to fade and we headed toward home but first we said hello to all the exotic animals that live down the road and around the corner.

Friday morning, Brenda invited us over for breakfast, so we didn't need any time to get ready and head over that way. She made three kinds of bacon, the candied bacon is my favorite, biscuits, homemade cinnamon roles, grits, strawberries, flour tortillas filled with cranberries, cream cheese and lemon, stuffed dates topped with a pecan, sausage and cheese rolls and jalapeno poppers. Oh my goodness! We were stuffed in such a very happy way. As promised from Lisa's last visit, Brenda began to teach Lisa how to make biscuits. Her biscuits turned out really good. Lisa also learned how to make sausage gravy. We waddled to the truck, made a quick stop at home to put up leftovers Brenda gave us for Saturday morning, and we were headed back out to Madison County. We stopped in at Penlands in Marshall and found such a deal on pajamas made in NC. Very cute! We did a little more looking around and then headed out to the country. We eventually made it over to Mars Hill and stopped in at Fiddlesticks. Cute shop.

Saturday, we went to Weaverville and then headed over to the Biltmore again. The sheep weren't out but we went to Traditions, the Winery and had supper at Cedric's. Lisa and I split a bison burger, she had salad and I had soup. Of course the delicious pretzel bread and lusty monk mustard butter were the bomb diggity. After supper, we went to see Vivian and Bill. She had made hummingbird cake and surprised us with homemade ice cream. She replicated the ice cream they had on Thursday, pineapple mint. It was good! Super good! We had a great visit, then headed back home.

Sunday, Lisa sang with the choir for our concert of prayer service. We sang Brooklyn Tab's Pray. Powerful! Pastor Gene is getting so much out of us as a choir and for that I am thankful. Since Sunday was Mother's Day, I cooked a roast in the crock pot and that is what we had for lunch. After taking a relaxing attitude toward the afternoon, we called Brenda and headed back to the Biltmore. The sheep were out and entertaining. Even the surprise of seeing Taylor, my trainer, and his family at the Biltmore made the afternoon special. Heard my name being called. There he was with his wife, children and in laws. Brenda, Lisa and I then went to the creamery for, yes, ice cream and then back to the Inn where Lisa wanted to make a final decision about a dress. She opted out on it and we were delighted to see bunnies and deer on our way out of the estate. We dropped Brenda off and then Lisa and I took another drive around to see the camels, elk, deer and watusi.

Monday morning we went to the gym. While I worked with Taylor, Lisa worked out. Then we headed over to Waynesville. Had a delicious lunch at Blue Rooster. Then stopped at Belk, Robin Blu and Hazelwood Soap Company. Since there is tree trimming being done on the freeways, we took back roads home. Once we got here we began to pack and get ready to head to Charlotte for Lisa's early morning flight home on Tuesday. Once Ray had packed up for the day, we left. Had a fun conversation with CourtneyS and then stopped for supper at Cracker Barrel. Got in, pretty much checked in with Roy and Malcolm, then we both fell asleep with visions of coconut cake dancing in our heads. Lisa was up and gone before 4:30 am. I dozed off and on and then got up and got ready to come back to Asheville and see the dentist. After seeing him I do feel like I am in good hands but also learned the news that the root canal could be a total waste of money. We shall see. So first appointment available, August. I will also see an oral surgeon and begin the process of having a couple of implants done. Started down this road but oral surgeon died and then we started the process of buying a house up here. I it is.

Well, that's it for tonight. I watched Houston's First Baptist tonight as they release their new album. Blessed.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Erie, Panama, Root...What Is A Canal Alex?

It is always good to stop and take in a moment. I think several of us had that kind of moment yesterday in Sunday School, I mean Life Bible Group....or whatever the name du jour is in this relevant season of life. Our class is very special, but then maybe all classes have the thought that their classes are special or unique. There is joy in knowing we can all experience that no matter what the in vogue title is in the latest and trendy "church world" vernacular. Because really it is all meaningless without the people, bringing with them their particular talents or gifts to share and experience with one another. It is all about worshiping God as we gather, the unity of the Body in the bond of peace. When in the rehab hospital almost every night as I struggled for rest in the middle of the night, I would pull out my phone and look at and pray for each friend from the pics I took on the last Sunday before returning to Texas. Among those pictures is a photo I took at Gale's home, her desk, where she studies and prepares our lessons, whether they be Sunday School lessons, Life Group lessons or Life Bible Study lessons. I love to look at that picture and pray for her, great visual.

I feel that way about our choir too. Feels special and unique. We altos are the mighty and the few when compared with sopranos. They outnumber us. I love how Gene leads us and the music we are doing. A good combo of new, contemporary and a splash of older songs just to keep everything interesting and everyone in the congregation engaged with worship. Seems like I am reprising a familiar role, commentary. While practicing for Easter Gene said I've not experienced the sunrise service here...and I added well, here in NC, we do it early. Last night he mentioned the Memorial Day picnic and that he had not experienced that here, and of course I told him that it was much later in the day than the sunrise. We all had a good laugh. We were working on the song Untitled Hymn, usually associated with Adrian Rogers. Angela asked if anyone knew sign language and Lorraine said, I bet Nancy knows sign language. Funny thing, I took a class a long time ago, way before everyone started taking a class to do interpretive signing with the singing but I admitted I only remember how to sign, you make me sick, help me and where is the bathroom?
Good Tuesday morning! I overslept this morning but thankfully Ray was later in arriving today. It was a full Monday and I even went to bed earlier than usual. Must have needed the extra rest. Had a good training/workout with Taylor. We concentrated on hip and knee rotation. Taylor mentioned that one of the therapists told him he was impressed with the work he is doing with me and how well I have responded to the exercises that are putting me back together again. I came home, ate lunch and got changed and ready for my dentist appointment. You know, you don't look forward to dentist appointments especially when a root canal is involved but on one of the loveliest days of spring, I was glad when they said unto me your appointment is at 3:15. The office has tons of music you can pick to listen to while having the procedure. It reminded me of my childhood dentist that had reel to reel stories to listen to while they examined or worked on your teeth. He had all the Dr Seuss stories. Yesterday, the choice was Carole King. Tina Turner was a close second but I didn't think I would sit still while they worked on me if I listened to Tina. So, Tapestry it was and the procedure was finished before getting through the whole album. Only got as far as Smackwater Jack, only missing Tapestry and Natural Woman. They also put those big sunglasses on you like you get to wear home after having dilated eyes at the eye doctor. It has been almost forty years since having a root canal and what used to take several visits took less than an hour. Hearing the drill and whatever other instruments they use...well, I thought I've been conditioned for the noise cause I've heard a lot of power sawing and drilling the last two weeks.

I had considered running an errand or two before returning home, but it hit me that I was emotionally tired. This whole tooth thing has gone on for three weeks and I'll still need to be careful and eat soft foods, which isn't really a bad thing, but next week I have an appointment with a dentist to begin the process and then complete the work and then do other stuff I have been putting off. I told the woman who answered the phone at his office that the dentist will probably be able to put his children through college once he is finished with the work. There are seasons of life where I find myself at the dentist weekly, then once the work has been done, I have a hole in my social life or so it seems.

On my way home on the river road right by the Post Office, the sheriffs were out in force, stopping us and doing a license check. I pulled out my registration and insurance info before being stopped by an officer. Handed him my license and he went to the back of the truck and looked at the license plate, came back to the window, handed back the license and told me to have a good day. I don't know if they are looking for someone or something specific, but it could have been just getting unlicensed drivers off the road. That scene was a first for me.

Thinking about sticking close to home today and get final preps done for Lisa's visit.

Saturday, May 6, 2017

Rain and Snow On A Saturday...We Just Got Rain

When I returned home this afternoon, Ray and I had a good conversation about Texas, guns, dogs, the right for Texas to succeed from the Union and we talked about the building process. It doesn't take too much time to get the beginning started, like the porch and deck. They tore out the old and put in the new...except for the remaining pieces for the covered porch floor. The deck went like gangbusters too with the concrete being poured and then the foundation of the new deck being built. The posts for the railing went up yesterday and today is the detailed work of getting everything prepared to frame in the door. Ray told me people get so impatient when it comes time for the detail work and he said it takes time and skill to do these things right. Since we built our home in Texas I am accustomed to the work slowing and progress being measured in inches rather than feet. Of course this is a broad brush stroke but we encounter the same process as we grow in our walk as believers. Most of the time when someone is new to the faith, things happen quickly and the foundation in the faith is laid but it is in the details, in the little things where a lot of change and growth are made. We grow impatient. I noticed the same thing with the glider and chairs that Doug restored. Taking this furniture that someone had grown impatient with and probably sold for a song and dance...from that to the finished product, lots of hard work in the tedious went into the pieces. We don't like the details to take extra time.
**************************************** is a cold but sunny Saturday morning. I was looking forward to sleeping in but a phone call woke me up, so easing into the day. I haven't had too many of these kind of days and miss easing into here and there but the sacrifice is a beautiful new porch. I'm tired but not fatigued. It is lack of long nights of sleep kind of tired, but I better get used to that cause Buddy will be back before you know it. She is going to love that screened in porch.

The payoff working with Taylor is multiplying. We, meaning me, have done a lot of core work and guess what? It is paying off in everyday functional fitness. He is giving a lot of focus on my left shoulder which has been an issue for over twenty years. As he was stretching it out and going through the process he said this is deep within the shoulder and the goal is to get it functioning again properly. Maybe even a bit of rotator cuff issues in the back. Learning the connections and connectors with our muscles and brain is interesting and keeps me on track. After my workout yesterday I headed back over to Antique Tobacco Barn to see if I missed on anything while we were there earlier in the week, since I could hardly concentrate until we got back for the glider. While going without any intent in mind some things did come home with me. Like a small wrought iron table that will go well with the set we found on Monday. This affords the opportunity for me to practice on a much smaller scale what I observed Doug doing. This table is also in better shape. Then I found something I didn't think I would ever find, a Biltmore Dairy Milk Box. The box that the milkman delivered your milk, cream and butter to. Now it is not the large metal box I have been searching for but with the Biltmore Dairy Milk bottles I have, it could make a lovely arrangement for flowers. There were two boxes and it was tempting to buy the older one but the lettering wasn't as plain as the one that came home with me. Added another Biltmore milk bottle to the collection and a tobacco stick stand. Don't know what that will be used, but for $16.50, how can you go wrong?

There is six inches of snow on Newfound Gap between NC and Tenn. Some reports are the roads will not be cleared until Monday around noon. The birds and squirrels have hung around here today. New birdseed will do that. I went out this morning and pulled a lot of weeds and then got out the weed puller for the hard to get weeds and the manual weed trimmer. I don't trust myself with the weedeater. A bunch of wild onions are growing out there and I returned to the house smelling a bit of onions. I swept up dirt and weeds and some of the sawdust that has accumulated. There is a lot to do in the garage but I cannot work on that till the guys are finished with the porch. I told Roy we need to start saving again so they can come back next year and do the back deck. We would like it extended, covered and screened in.

I got most of the cleaning done in readiness for Lisa's visit. Keeping up with tracked in stuff is a daily thing right now.

Well, I think the rain is over and I still have a few things to do before settling in.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Wonderful, Beautiful...

The squirrels are running kind of slow this morning which means the Wifi is not running very fast for the computer and pretty much not at all for my phone. Oh well... Anyway, other than Wifi things are moving right along. Doug left this morning after we put the glider back together and moved it and the chairs to the backyard. His phone died yesterday so he was anxious to get back home and get to Verizon. He just texted me that the phone started charging in his truck. Yahoo! Told him his phone need a vacay too. Except, Doug kind was busy the whole time he was here with the glider and chairs. He did a fabulous job. When we were at the Antique Tobacco Barn he asked me where would we start and I said, I always find things on the left side...and there they were...just sitting there waiting for me to see them from the distance. Doug looked at them, said they were in good condition, even with the rusty patina. Loaded them up and off we went to Lowe's several times but he left them ready to roll once the porch is He used hammered chestnut spray paint on them. Yesterday morning, after giving them the first coat of paint, we went to Stoney Knob for lunch and then headed over to Home Goods. We found cushions, pillows, and accessories. We were also dealing with a lady who wanted everything we touched. So we would have to put stuff in the cart even if we weren't decided on it. The trip to Home Goods was successful and lots of fun. Even got to show my creative side in the store and got the approval of Doug who told me he is stealing the idea.
Another night of good soaking rain. The rain gauge shows almost two inches. Around 4:00 am the area lost electricity due to limbs and trees on the line. With the generator we didn't lose power and for that I am always thankful. But it is dark out here without any lights. I took advantage of the time and looked at the sky filled with stars. Beautiful! The grid power came back on around 4;20 am. So, it was a rather short duration. Duke Power is good with the text alerts too.

I got out early yesterday morning and had breakfast at Tommy's. Really, where else will you get a delicious breakfast of eggs, bacon and pancakes for $5.95? Then I headed back to Home Goods to see if they had put out anymore cushions and they had. Found a pillow and also found a cat bed for Buddy on the porch. Went to Whole Foods for elderberry syrup and sliced and peeled oranges. A quick stop in Barnes and Noble was worth it cause I found my magazine. Then Publix for a few groceries. I introduced my brother to sparkling cranberry juice.

While in the grocery store our contractor called and said the metal guys would be at our home that afternoon to measure and discuss what we wanted for the railings for the stone steps and for the metal stand for a swing in the front yard. The guys came by and we talked a bit, or maybe that should be shouted cause we were out in the howling wind. Again, it is so true up here, these workmen do not want to talk to me, they would rather talk with a man about these manly things of building.

The high today is only in the mid 50's and it will be cool through Monday. More like March temps and weather. There might be more rain today but right now the sun is out.

Today is a workout day. Each week I see improvement and Doug was so encouraging with his words about the progress I am making. And with that I better eat breakfast and get started on this day.

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Rooster, Glider and Coconut Cake

Yesterday while cleaning and straightening things up in the kitchen, I took a picture of our kitchen table that is set into the bay windows. Saw an idea the other day about putting flowers in a wooden toolbox by using mason jars. So, I had this little one that I probably picked up at Target and used very small mason jars, also found at Target and cut flowers, not found at Target, and made an arrangement. Turned out kind of cute. This is the same table and window I took a picture of on an early Sunday morning, with the kitchen only bathed in light from a night light and contrasted with the snow outside the window. Turned out kind of cute. So this summer, I think I will take a picture of this same scene and then take one in the fall.

I am again defending the birds from stray cats wandering through. An orange cat just came through the backyard and chased off two Eastern Towhees either fighting or going through a mating ritual. Who knows? It all looks to be the same. Last night Bunny Foo Foo let me get kind of close. Last year Inez told me they get so drunk or enamored with clover they will let down their guard somewhat.

In 2015 we had indigo buntings visit the bird feeder then last year, we didn't ever see one. This year, I have seen one. I thought it was an indigo but put it on FB to get verification from my learned friends. I have seen a couple of hummingbirds too, so got those feeders out and then I found the ant deterrent.
Oh Tuesday morning, filled with sunshine and cool temps, welcome. I noticed along the roads yesterday that the wild blackberries are in bloom and not by coincidence, the temps will be much cooler on Friday. For now the house is quiet. No one came yesterday to work on the porch because of the rain. That doesn't mean I wasn't working. My brother arrived Sunday afternoon and he is the guru of DIY projects. But I am getting ahead of myself. Anyway, he arrived and after a short meet and greet and hug, we were off to Addison Vineyards so he could see the views and do a wine tasting. We had a good time visiting with the owner and learning so much, not only about the wine making but the process of going into the business. Since I don't really drink wine much I only took a sip of the mead Doug tried. It was very tasty. We left and drove around the countryside both around here and in Madison County. The surprise of the day was supper because I had fixed a roast in the crock pot. It was a mixture of an old recipe and a new recipe.

Doug came with me to my workout but he decided to read and do some research for finding a porch glider. I have never used Craig's List and he found a set of chairs and glider, only to find out it had been sold. So, to ease the disappointment of missing out on that grouping, we headed over to Blue Rooster in the pouring rain. Lunch did not disappoint and we have another person who loves them some Blue Rooster. We went to an antique place outside of Waynesville which is really a hit and miss place. I have found some things there that I treasure but most of the time the place is a a huge miss. We got a few ideas yesterday for some things but we walked away empty handed. Since we were taking the back way home due to all the traffic because of land closures on 40, a quick visit to Main Street Mercantile was in order. Saw a couple of things that I might go back to purchase. We then took the back way to 40 and ended up going to Antique Tobacco Barn. I like to start out on the left side cause that is where I have found things I love and as we were beginning our jaunt I saw a glider and two chairs. Doug did the check of condition and declared it a good find. He also suggested we make an offer lower than the price. We walked around but I could not get that glider out of my mind. Then I got panicky thinking everyone who had entered the place was going to buy that glider before we returned to the front of the building. The owner accepted the offer and the glider and chairs were loaded in the back of the the truck and we were on our way. After we dropped off the furniture, we went to Lowe's to get the supplies that Doug would need to begin the work of restoration. Supper was Sonic and after that we started in. We bought a cordless drill but progress was slow and the evening wearing on. I found a corded drill in Roy's tool box and that sped up the process. Then Doug sprayed on the naval jelly. This morning we should get the first coat of paint on everything and then head out to do more looking and enjoying one another's company. I am up early to let the crew into the garage and I am glad Doug is getting some sleep.

So that's a wrap for now.