Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Life Choices

I have come to the conclusion that no matter how well we raise our children, no matter how many times they are in church a week, no matter how much counseling we give them ~ they make their own decisions and they have to live with the consequences of those decisions....the good, the bad and the ugly. 

It is hard to let my children take the consequences and not step in and help them at all ~ tough love stinks.  It has resulted in many tears, countless sleepless nights, and churning guts.  Its hard of a mom.  I don't think this ever gets easier.

We have 3 children going through major, potentially life altering situations.  Amy's is a major baby is getting married.  And moving away ~ ok only 15 minutes but still for me this is major.  The closer the wedding gets, the more anxious I get ~ its all good, just different.  I have 2 other children going through situations we have no control over and we just have to sit, pray, and watch/listen.  These are the hard ones. 

We are encouraging where we can, praying always, worrying lots (especially me, its a mom thing), etc.  One is a situation we never thought we would walk through again....ever.  The other is one we never wanted to happen.

We can't protect our children forever.  All of them are adults.  They have to face up and be responsible and act like adults.  On the flip side ~ we are always the parent, we don't stop being the parent when they are grown.  We can still offer advice and guidance but not realistically expect them to obey.  The saying "been there, done that" can apply, but some have to learn the very hard way.

Oh well.

Today I chose to be thankful for ~

quiet mornings I can study the Bible, in depth
long periods of prayer (some in the awake hours of the middle of the night)
recalling good times
listening friends, family & our Pastor
crafting time in the afternoons
books to read and lose myself in

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Fun, busy week

Last Friday I got to surprise my Miss. buddies and it sure was a lot of fun!  Their daddy had been working in Athens all week and they drove over for the weekend.  But, the kids were led to believe we were out of town ~ to pull off the surprise.  Amy, Greg and I met them at the Varsity in Athens for lunch and at least one of the kids was super surprised....Ragen!  It was so worth it to see her face and get her sweet hugs.  Honestly...they all have sweet hugs.  Then we went to Party City to buy some of Amy's wedding stuff ~ the invitations & envelope seals, coffee cups and lids, napkins for the buffet and dessert tables and huge bags of candy for the candy favor bar.  And Party City has an app with coupons, which I got to take advantage of!

Then back to the house for numerous games of Umo (Lauren's word for Uno), Phase 10, and Cirkus (a shape game like Blockus). 

They came back the next day ~ Steven was a huge help with Greg fixing a belt on the boat, we went to the Farm Stand for peaches, watermelon and cantaloupe, picked garden stuff in the field, and played Uno and Phase 10.  And then we watched it rain ~ a lot.  We thought our Stone Mountain Laser Show trip was going to be washed out but we went anyway and it was a fantastic, soggy, patriotic show.  Oh, we showed them Amy's veil and Miss Lauren decided she needed one I made her a veil ~ which she wore all day, to the farm stand and too the grocery store. 

They headed back to MS on Sunday morning ~ and the Smiths drove over and got here Sunday evening.  Austin stayed in our RV.  We ran lots of errands.  Austin's mom, Tammy brought over the flowers she had made ~ all the bouquets, table centerpieces, corsages, boutonnieres, etc.  She did a fantastic job and they were beautiful.  Monday afternoon, she stayed at the house with me and worked on a couple of more corsages and a boutonniere.  I had a project to finish also, so we had a nice visit.  Amy, Austin and his dad went to the new house & ripped up carped in 2 rooms and got them ready to lay the new flooring.

Monday night we headed back to Stone Mountain for the Laser Show again...this time half of Atlanta was trying to get into the park with us.  It was packed!  All was great except for one incidence ~  at the end of the Laser show and before the Patriotic fireworks show ~ they had everyone rise for the National Anthem and the Pledge of Allegiance.  If you chose not to stand and be respectful (like the people behind us) ~ then you should, at the very least close your mouth.  Those folks were loud and obnoxious the whole time ~ I shushed them at one point.  But think about it ~ you are at a Patriotic celebration of our Nations 241 st birthday on the Eve of the 4th of July ~ if you don't want to be respectful, you should have stayed home.  I am proud of our Nation, our Heritage, and the sacrifices made by our brave Military. (rant over)

Tuesday, we spent time at the lake with Katie her crowd, and Austin & his folks.  Lots of fun swimming, playing with water squirters, watermelon eating, tubing, jet ski riding and knee boarding.  Then the rain started.  After we got the boat loaded back onto the trailer, the thunder and lightning started so we were thankful that didn't happen while we were on the water.  We let Cracker Barrel fix our dinner that night!  Yum!

Wednesday we went out to the house and worked on painting and the floor.  They got the floor done in the little bedroom and the master bedroom.  Greg finished up the last strip of flooring in the master and the little bedroom closet last night.  Now we need to do the baseboards and touch up any spots for paint.  Amy, Tammy and Austin cleaned the vent covers, the ceiling fans, and Amy spray painted the vent covers.  Everything is looking nice and clean and will be fanstastic when all the projects are completed. 

After visiting James yesterday and going to Walmart and Kroger with Mom, I sat down last night and cross stitched.  Something nice and lazy.  Amy & Greg worked last night ~ Will and I had leftovers for dinner. 

Oh, and we sold Amy's car.  She has been wanting too for a while.  Greg put it on Craigs List on Friday night and it was sold by Sunday afternoon.  Now, to find the girl another vehicle.  Her biggest want on her car list is a working air conditioner! 

I am thankful for ~
help with wedding preparations
sales and coupons on apps
watching Amy & Austin interact with each other
household help with their future home together
recreation time
the USA and all it represents

Here are some pictures of our fun, busy, tiring week!  And even though it was was worth every minute! 

Amy & Austin

Being at the lake is obviously very tiring!
Amy has wanted to take Austin jetski riding for 2 years!

American Flag over the Memorial Carving at Stone Mountain Park

Ragen and I

waiting out the rain for the laser show

Our handprint chicken pictures inspired by pinterest!

Me, Amy, Alston, Ragen, Sara, Lauren & Angel ~ fun at the Varsity

Thursday, June 29, 2017

Where did the Babies Go?

My Grandsons aren't babies anymore ~

Thankful for ~


Monday, June 26, 2017

Life is Happening

Life is rushing along at a fast pace.  The long cozy winter days are long over and the summer busyness is setting in. 

The garden is doing great.  I've got loads of squash, lots of green tomatoes, and quite a few meals worth of green beans.  I have canned 2 canner loads of squash and one of green beans.  I would love more beans but may have to find a farmers market to buy them at and can them.  It would be a blessing to have enough to last the winter.  One of our fruit trees has 14 granny smith apples on it and Amy is excited ~ those are her favorite.  We are getting some cucumbers too, so I will get to make relish this year!

Moms health had a slight set back a couple of weeks ago and she experienced a moderate stroke.  3 1/2 days in icu isn't a fun place to be.  For the most part she had great nurses ~ there were a couple that needed to work on their bedside manner.  She was really blessed in that it mainly affected the strength in her left arm and hand.  It could have been so much worse.

Miss Amy is starting to look for another car.  She is getting tired of no air conditioning and the power locks don't work on the doors.  She and Greg are combing Craigs List looking for something.  She would like something of the used Jeep something or other variety.  We will see what comes of that.

About a month ago we bought something we have wanted for a long time....a boat.  Its used and in pretty good shape.  There is some cosmetic work to be done but nothing major.  We've taken it out twice and had a lot of fun.  We grew up boating and skiing and wanted to at least enjoy the boating part again. 

I've got several pretty detailed lists going for the wedding.  We are working on completing the reception details with food, condiments, treats, paper goods, and manpower.  We are hoping that 2 of Amys co workers at Chick Fil A will come work for us that day and help with set up and serving all the food.  We've looked at plates, flatware, napkins and invitations and those are all on the list to be bought next month.  Its getting to be time to focus on the guest list and get those invites together.  She has 2 bridal showers coming up and this mama is getting apprehensive and excited about all the excitement.  I made her veil last week.  I used Katies wedding hair bow for the top of the veil and the lace on the layers is from my wedding gown 35 years ago.  The tulle was given to my sister at a garage was a bolt that had never been used ~ now what to do with the other 23 yards left!  I also have a full bolt of light pink! 

There have been several work days at Amy's house and the current project is painting the inside.  Then to 2 rooms that are carpeted will have the carpet ripped out and replaced with laminate flooring.  The previous owners were smokers and its evident in the smokey smell when the door is opened. 

We've had some awesome playdates with our grandsons.  They are at such fun ages.  Saturday, all 4 were together for most of the day.  We started the day at an indoor play place with lots of climbing and sliding and having fun.  Then lunch at McDonalds.  Everyone was ready for a nap.  After naptime, Aiden came over and they all played again for a couple of hours in my sunroom/playroom.  Kitchen toys, cars and trucks, legos and Lincoln logs, and a small inflatable ball pit kept them entertained.  Aiden and Alvin got up their courage and decided to ride on the rocking horse....and loved it.  Most of the toys in the room were my kids when they were little...the rocking horse was from Gregs childhood.  There are a few new things in there....the little kitchen, little tractors, additional set of Lincoln logs, and books.  Several months ago, Allen and Jennifer cleaned out Aidens playroom and they gave me the ball pit.  Aiden never missed it.  Sat. Greg blew it up ~ Aiden walked out to the playroom and exclaimed "look a ball pit"...never realizing it was his former one.  He had a blast playing in it! 

I've got pictures but those are for another day.  Its time for dinner & then cross stitch till bed time!

Thankful for ~
family fun
4 grandsons ~ happy, healthy, energetic, funny, enthusiastic, loving
modern healthcare and medicine
a thriving garden
Mason jars containing canned vegies!
the blessing of church fellowship & prayer
long, productive days

Tuesday, June 13, 2017


Last week we drove to MS to visit with Austin and his family.  I have known his mama about 5 years before him and Amy ever met.  Its fun to visit with them.  This weekend was no exception.  We ate at some awesome little places and went to the Blueberry Jubilee.

Friday we went to eat lunch at a diner (looks like it took over an old 7-11).  The owner greeted us at the door and everyone got a huge hug.  Billy Kent had met her before and he introduced us all her to.  She was talking about all the items on the buffet and told us not to let Austin have any rutabagas....they are supposed to be a natural Viagra.  We got a huge kick out of that news!  I had never had any and I tried them....really good.  The buffet that day was chicken n dumplings (Amy loved them), roast & gravy, fried chicken, loads of homestyle vegetables.  This stuff is not canned and reheated....its fresh!  The owner, Candi knows everyone and treats them like family.  She asked a guy to sing and he didn't...Tammy volunteered Austin ~ and he did a great job with Amazing Grace.  Everyone stopped eating to listen and a few joined in also.  Right after we sat down, Candi came to our table, joined hands with us to pray.  This is a special lady!  After our amazing lunch, I went to find her and she was in the kitchen washing dishes.  I got to thank her for her hospitality and give her a hug.  That is one place I will visit again.

Then we went junk/antique shopping.  The first 2 places were just ok...the last 2 were fantastic!  I found 2 pieces of Fire King that had a rooster on the front and bought them.  Amy found a set of pyrex antique bowls ~ ok she found way more than one set, but just got one.  At the 2nd one, I found mom a Corning Ware teapot with a lid.....her lid had broken.  We had way too much fun in these places.  I think I can safely say those last 2 shops are where pyrex and corning ware go to find a new home. 

Saturday we ate breakfast ~ wonderful ham and cheese omelet on the way to the Bluebeerry Jubiliee.  Lots of interesting things to look at, a car show, and more shops.  We hit one that was selling out her inventory and ready to bargain.  I got some cool things there and so did Tammy and Amy~

Austin was part of the afternoon singing line up so we stated this the to watch him.  He did a  great~

Sunday morning was church, then lunch and the long trip home. 

Thankful for ~

bargains and bargaining
the colorful dishes of yesteryear
friendly faces and folks'
good visits
great country cooking

Someone asked me about the wedding ~ I said it was 6 months away....and then I astarted counting ~ 4 months....yikes, that's not long!

Believe it or not ~
I didn't take my camera so I hav not pircutes to share!

Monday, June 5, 2017


We are doing a study of theology on Wednesday nights in church, using the Drive By Theology series by Todd Friel and Steve Lawson (Wretched TV).  It is a great, fast paced, study of Biblical Theology with tons of scripture references to back up their assertions.

Which makes me think (a lot) ~

*Do we do everything for God's glory or ourselves?
*Do we go to church to worship or socialize (sometimes both)?
*Do we add things to worship styles that were never intended or mandated in the Bible?  Are our preferences more important than Scripture?
*Do we place more emphasis on translations or focus on God's word? (and yes, there are some bad translations ~ but not all)
*Do we take the Bible literally or figuratively?
*Do we believe the retelling of Biblical accounts or think they are just stories?
*Do we believe everything the Bible testifies about the trinity?
*Do we love others more than ourselves?
* Do we give of our time, talents and resources to aid in furthering the Lords kingdom?
*Do we know that "His Will, will be done at all times, in all situations" no matter what we do ~ we can't thwart the Will of God.
*Do we trust Him with every aspect of our lives? With our childrens lives?
*Do we come across as humble, loving believers to others?  Or are our opinions more important than Biblical truth?
*Do we study the Bible during the week or just pull it out for an hour on Sunday morning?
*Do we realize the Christian life is our whole life ~ private, public, on Sunday, etc. We can't turn on and off being a Christian.
*Do our actions, language, mannerisms, lifestyle reflect that of a follower of Christ?
*Do we realize that the Bible says what it means and means what it says ~ we can't change the meaning of the Bible because we feel like it or because of political correctness.
*Do we realize that while God is a good, gracious, forgiving, and loving Heavenly Father, he also has an avenging, wrathful, sever side.
*Do we realize that God is everywhere, all the time ~ He always has been, always is, and always will be.
*Do we realize that God is truth ~ and anything that contradicts the Word of God is not from God.
*Are we thankful and humbled to have knowledge revealed to us from reading the Scriptures?

I am thankful for ~
a Biblical translation that is accurate & easy to read
for wonderful teachers/pastors/speakers who bring us the truth not their opinions & preferences
for a fellowship of like-minded believers
the comfort of knowing the Lord is in control and nothing catches Him by surprise
for the forgiveness of past mistakes
for accountability with believers
for the sacrifice of Jesus Christ for His elect
for the glimpses of the eternal Christ throughout the Old Testament

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Virginia and Tennessee

Greg and I went to a Memorial Service for an extended family member in Chantilly, VA last weekend.  We took the opportunity to renew our National Park membership and visit Civil War battlefields in the area.  We scheduled our rambling to where we wanted to visit.

We went to Antietam, Manassas (Bull Run), and Cedar Creek (a new one to us).  Greg found a Civil War guide book at Antietam and you can stamp each park as you visit.  Our goal is to fill the book.  Gregs great, great grandparents are buried at Cades Cove.  We got home and he started researching that family line and has gotten back 7 greats to a father and son that served in the Revolutionary War.  Also, several greats back they owned 1000 acres on Cedar Creek in VA. 

The we went to Pigeon Forge, Gatlinburg, and Cades Cove.  I know the fires last fall were horrific and did tons of damage.  But driving through the towns ~ on the main streets, we didn't see anything.  So the reports of mainstreet Pigeon Forge and Gatlinburg being 90% gone were untrue (I don't think they could have rebuilt that quick).  Pigeon Forge has become "Kississimee like", very crowded and wall to wall touristy stores.  Gatlinburg is still the walk thru town with the quaint least the main street.  I much prefer Gatlinburg.  It was raining, so we didn't get out and walk around.  Maybe next time.

We both love Cades Cove.  Very quiet, beautiful, and peaceful. We got behind some extremely slow drivers.  Turkeys and deer were their photographic obsession and even though the signs ask you to pull over, they stopped in the middle of the road and blocked all traffic.  We hit another jam and Greg's comment was "if they ever spot a bear, they will lose their minds".  I couldn't see anything of interest but there were lots of folks out of their cars with cameras.  I asked a guy what they were looking at and he said a bear.  So Greg pulled over and I jumped out of the car with the camera.  Yes, people were losing their minds.  It was great to get pictures~one is good as he dashed between cars crossing the road~no chance of a car hitting him because they weren't moving.  But the clear crossing the road picture is of his hind end as he ran between cars.

stone bridge at Manassas

for our Stonewall ~ Thomas

doctors kit

this turkey was strutting around and showing off


bear hind end

Thankful for ~

time away
a husband with a love of history
seeing deer, turkeys and a bear
cool day
picnics in the car
visiting with family
a love of history instilled by my daddy (I didn't appreciate it when I was younger)
apple fritters at the Apple Barn in Pigeon Forge

And here is my politically incorrect rant of the day ~ The demand/trend/trantrum about removing historical statues is STUPID.  This is the history of our country, folks.  Removing a statue of Robert E Lee in New Orleans is dumb and quite frankly disprectful.  You can not change history by removing statues or rewriting history books.  Also, the Civil War or as daddy called it The War of Northern Aggression was not started because of slavery but it became Lincolns goal after several years.  KNOW your history ~ read history books written before 1950.  Yes, slavery was wrong, very wrong ~ but it happened.  If slaves are in your family lineage, be proud of them.  They were a tough, strong people to have come out of that evil and have families and live productive lives.  They are to be admired, not ashamed of.  End of rant.....for now!