Friday, April 24, 2015

Time For Catch-Up

One of my goals in starting this new blog is to document our life in South Carolina. Neglecting to write for more than two weeks is not quite meeting that goal. Let's see if I can catch-up with a list.
1. Two weeks ago I was thrilled to be able to fly back to Iowa to spend a long weekend with my daughter, son-in-law and this sweet baby girl:
So much cuteness!! A piece of my heart is on that Iowa farm with this sweet baby. I know, I know. In 6 weeks I have turned into one of those grandmothers. No apologies. Grin.

2. I was in Iowa for a meet the new baby shower that was attended by extended family.
These are a couple of my favorite pictures of from the shower.
My in-laws.

My parents.
Great-grand parents. Lydia has seven living great-grandparents. How cool is that?

3. We are still in a holding pattern back in South Carolina. We have a lot of things scheduled and lined up for the next month. Things like painting, furniture delivery, kitchen cabinets being customized and hardwood floors being refinished.

4. After those things are done there will be lots more boxes unpacked and things actually organized and the house actually decorated.

5. We intended to spend a long weekend in Charleston, SC, but when the weather forecast was for lots of rain, we canceled the plan and did some shopping instead. We went to Charlotte, NC to IKEA and Crate & Barrel, made a stop in Hickory, NC and ordered an awesome bed for the guest room. Our final stop was in Asheville, NC where we intended on doing some sighting seeing, but I got a migraine and that thwarted plans. We ended up coming back home early. Phooey. That headache lasted three or four days. Yuck.

6. I don't wear makeup every day when I'm at home, but I have been on a quest to find a good full-coverage foundation. I even went to a store and let someone try makeup on me. I bought it and tried it a couple of times, but ended up returning it because it smelled weird. Like an old lady. Couldn't take it.

7. Hubby brought me home a rose yesterday. It's so pretty in this stemmed glass. (I haven't unpacked the box with vases yet.)

9. We made a trip to Lowe's last night. It seems as though any trip to Lowe's is actually two (or three) trips to Lowe's. You gotta look over the options, then go home to think about it or measure things and then go back for the purchases. Then there is inevitably another trip for something you forgot.

10. Gotta end this list with another Lydia picture. My daughter sent this to me last night.
Baby smiles. Eyes lighting up. Be still my heart.

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

A Wednesday Hodgepodge

1. Besides left over Easter goodies, what's something currently kept in a basket at your house?
We have a random basket on a coffee table that holds all sorts of remotes that are awaiting their assignment. We just have to find the TVs, stereos, blue-ray players they go to and decide where to put those things. Sigh. Moving. Oh, there are also take-out menus and a power cord to something and coasters and instructions for a blue-ray player and a dust rag and printed out HOA rules and recycling guidelines in the same basket. Because that makes total sense. (It's not even a terribly large basket.)

2. 'The greater danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss it, but that it is too low and we reach it.' ~Michelangelo Buonarroti )
So which one are you...the one who aims too high, or the one who aims too low? Have you ever seen The Sistine Chapel? Did you know Michelangelo's surname prior to answering this question?
I don't really like to admit it, but I think my "aim" is often too low.
I have never seen The Sistine Chapel and I always thought Michelangelo was a one named dude. Learn something new every day, huh?

3. April 7th is National Beer Day. Hmmm...wonder how that's celebrated? Do you like beer? Have a favorite? If you're not a beer drinker do you have any recipes you enjoy cooking that call for beer?
I think beer tastes (and smells) like gross liquid bread.
My favorite recipe that uses beer is Pioneer Woman's Beef Stew with Beer and Paprika. Oh man, that stuff is so yummy!

4. When did you last travel somewhere new? Tell us where? How'd it go?
We made a quick trip to Charlotte, NC in February.
We haven't done much exploring of our new state, yet. Moving projects will keep one from doing things like that, I guess.
We are planning on going to Charleston, SC in a couple of weeks. I've always wanted to visit there and I'm pretty excited that we live  only three hours from there!
5. The value of a professional athlete is greatly overrated.
They get paid an outrageous amount of money for doing something that does not add a lot of value to society.

6. What's a pet peeve of yours when it comes to restaurant dining?

Wait staff that isn't trained and/or isn't attentive. We ate out recently at a fairly nice restaurant where our waiter was a very quiet talker. So quiet, in fact, that when he came to the table to take our orders, he just stood there and did not say a thing! I initially wanted to wait to speak until he said something, but then I just wanted him to go away as quickly as possible. He gave me the heebie jeebies!

7. It's Poetry Month...share a favorite poem, either the title, a few lines you find meaningful, or the whole kit and caboodle.
Can't say I have a favorite poem. Poetry has never interested me much. (Except when Hubby writes me one of his famous "Roses are red, violets are blue" poems. They are very original!)

8. Insert your own random thought here.

My daughter texted me this picture a couple of weeks ago. This is my mom and my granddaughter. They share the same middle name of Mae.

 My daughter called me to tell me the story of this visit. She lives about 40 minutes west of where my parents live. One Tuesday about two weeks ago, my daughter woke up from a nap and had a voice mail from my dad. My parents had left the house that morning to go to a doctor's appointment for my mom, but it was canceled at the last minute. Mom indicated (she has no speech due to a stroke about 18 months ago) that she didn't want to go back home. My dad has an amazing ability to ask Mom enough questions to figure out what she is wanting. He says that after 62 years of marriage he ought to be able to read her facial expressions and just plain understand her. Dad asked Mom if she wanted to go out for lunch. She nodded her head yes, then no. Meaning, Dad discerned, that she was fine with eating lunch out, but she wanted to do something else. While they were eating lunch, Mom kept pointing west. So Dad asked and asked trying to figure out what was she was pointing towards. He finally asked, "Do you want to go meet Lydia Mae?" to which he received a resounding "Uh Huh" and a strong nod of the head yes!

I got tears in my eyes (and do now as I write this out) when I first heard this story. I shake my head in amazement at what my mom has accomplished since her stroke despite the things she cannot do. I also am so moved by my dad's care for my mom.

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

Settled In? Hardly!

Two weeks ago Monday, the moving truck delivered our household goods. Several people have asked if we are settled in to our house. I just laugh because we really are not at all. We still have about 12,876 boxes to unpack.

What the heck have we been doing?

We realized before the moving truck came that the wood floors that are in all the main floor rooms (except the bathrooms) are in very bad shape. It's only a nine year old house, but it's evident that 1) the builder cut corners with finishing the floors, and 2) the previous owners did nothing along the line of upkeep (of anything in the house). (And they left the house filthy.)

We have lined up someone to come refinish the floors but that won't happen until the end of April. In the meantime, we don't want to unpack too much stuff that we have to move again when that happens.

Yes, this is pretty frustrating. No, I don't do well living in chaos. When I fell stressed I like to quilt, but that's not possible right now because my sewing room is still in boxes. Sigh.

Hubby has been working like a madman to clean up and paint the garage. The previous owners smoked in the garage (and on the screened in porch) and it smelled terrible! Every time someone opened the door from the house to the garage, the smell wafted into the house. Ugh! So, dear, wonderful, hard-working Hubby has washed all the walls, prepped with Kilz paint and is now painting the garage. Since the walls are already divided into three areas: drywall, cinder-block base and a molding in between, he is painting it two shades of gray and the molding black. Even though he's not finished, it already looks so much better and the awful smoke smell is gone!

Anyone want to come in May to help me set up the kitchen? I look at all my stuff and I look at the kitchen and freeze. Not my strong suit. It takes me a while to figure out how to make it function.

We left our house in Minnesota on Christmas Eve. It will be more than five months from that point before we feel like we are settled in to our new house. Sigh.

I decided a good way to deal with the stress of a chaotic house is to leave! Mature way to handle it, huh? I'm flying to Iowa this weekend to see my granddaughter (and her parents)! Yippee! Can't wait to hold that precious little sweetie! I hope to see my parents while I'm there, too!

Monday, April 6, 2015


Easter morning found us at a type of church we have only been to one other time. (Christmas morning 1999, Hanmer Springs, New Zealand.)

This year we celebrated Easter at an Anglican church. There are two couples in our Community Bible Study group who attend this church and had invited us to visit. What better Sunday than Easter?

I really wasn't sure what to expect. I guess I expected something dry and rote. Boy, was I surprised! There was a definite feeling of joy of the resurrection of Jesus and glorifying God going on!

The service started with what they called The Flowering of the Cross. Children (and some adults) came forward to put flowers on the cross. It was beautiful.

The fragrance from the flowers was lovely!

It is a very liturgical church, so there was a lot of responsive reading. The minister (Priest? I don't know what they are called in the Anglican church) gave a gospel-filled message wanting people to actually know Jesus and have a relationship with him. (I've been to too many church services where the sermon could be summarized as "Go be nice to people".)

After the sermon, communion was served. Everyone filed up front to receive communion. Since we had name tags on, I was touched to hear my name from the minister (priest?), "Judy, this is Christ's body broken for you. Judy, this is Christ's blood shed for you." Love the personal touch. I was moved by watching the ministers lay their hands on the heads of some of the children that went up with there parents and pray for them. I wondered what they prayed.

I was amused at the spring and Easter garb. Evidently men of the South like to wear bow-ties, pastel plaid sport coats and I saw more than one man wearing a light blue and white striped sear-sucker suit. Oh my. The three year old little boy with the saddle shoes and the light blue and white sear-sucker suit was cute, but the men? Hmmmmm.

Overall, it was a beautiful celebration. I was happy to be surprised.

Thursday, April 2, 2015

I Know Who I Am

I spent the first two days of this week proving to the state of South Carolina that I am me.

Why? I was trying to get a South Carolina driver's license for me and South Carolina license plates for our cars.

There are many steps required by the state to go through to get this accomplished. I would say the easiest part was paying the property taxes for the cars.

Then came the DMV.

I may be wrong, but I got the distinct feeling that the lady who first receives the people at the local DMV delights in finding that you don't have the right documents. I went on Monday afternoon to get the list (which she quickly rattled off) and Hubby and I searched boxes for the correct documents. We were having a hard time finding some of the required documents and frustration was setting in. I prayed for God to intervene, and a few minutes later Hubby comes upstairs with a three-ring binder and starts pulling out the necessary documents. I laughed. It was a very logical place because a few years ago I asked Hubby to put together a notebook. In it is all our important papers and information about financial stuff, etc. Hubby did a wonderful job of organizing it. The problem was, we both forgot about it!! We blamed it on the stress of moving. Yes, absolutely that and not the getting older and all that stuff.

Tuesday we both went to the DMV together to finish all of this. As we were showing different official documents, I thought that it seemed a very difficult task to prove we are who we are.

But I KNOW who I am IN CHRIST. And I couldn't be more thankful.

Romans 10:9 says:  If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved.

If I am saved, then I am a child of God.

Galatians 3:26-28 says: So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Gentile, neither slave nor free, nor is there male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.

1 John 3:1 says: See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

I am thankful that God doesn't require a birth certificate, passport, marriage license, proof of address, social security card to call me His child. 

So grateful.