Welcome to my blog. Thanks for coming! One day I hope my little piece of internet real estate will be home to lots of family photos, pictures of my scrapbook and card art, with some random thoughts and memories posted on a somewhat regular basis. Mostly my world is very predictable, but occasionally some excitement will find me, so visit often. Who knows what useful (or useless) information you may find here.


Saturday, February 28, 2009

The Castle

It's today! It's today! My coffee's almost gone, and my Saturday Morning Headache is beginning to fade. Today's the big day- -when I make a feeble attempt at painting a castle on the wall in the Princen Room. I posted earlier about a really neat box of Princen wall decor thingies I found on clearance. Whitney and I had the bright idea to get Travis to paint the castle on the wall, since the decal wasn't large enough. We weren't able to connect with Travis in a timely enough fashion, so we decided that we would do it ourselves. Oh yeah. This should be rich. As you can see in the blurry photo, it is a very simple design, so surely we can manage that. The walls are painted and dried lovely shades of pink and purple, and last night I drew the castle outline with chalk. So far so good. Now I am armed with paint, brushes, sponges, etc., and have just about psyched myself up enough to have a go at it. It started raining yesterday, which we so desperately need, but it is supposed to rain all day, and sometime early in the morning hours tomorrow turn to SNOW, and in general just be a messy, wet, cold weekend. I mention that because it puts a monkey wrench in our moving plans for the weekend. In order to get Leyland's big-girl bed out of my storage building, we must first remove a plethora of boxes and furniture before we can access the bed and mattress. The lake in my back yard prohibits this. Even so... I'm off to the Princen Room to do my very best at painting a castle for my little Princen. I'll post pictures (maybe... maybe not... haha) when it's all finished.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

The Speech

Did you watch the President on tv last night? I missed most of it, so I'm hoping to go back and watch it on the internet. I had to do the Wal Mart thing. If you watched it, what did you think? He is a very polished speaker and has a real talent for motivating even his non-supporters. Yeah, it all sounds really good, but when the rubber meets the road, I'm just not convinced it's a good idea... spending gazillions of dollars that we don't have. I do think it is important, though, to restore an element of confidence in the American people. Those much wiser in the world of finance will pick it apart and analyze everything (as well they should!) but for the rest of us, all we can do is trust them (gasp) to do what is best, and do our part to stimulate the economy. I know I personally stimulate Wal-Mart's economy every week. :-] Remember our leaders when you pray. Have a wonderful Wednesday!

Monday, February 23, 2009

The Weekend

Mondays have always gotten a bad rap. It's the first day of drudgery, back to the grind after being off for the weekend. Well, at least that's how it goes for the traditional Monday thru Friday worker. In the olden days, when nothing was open on Sundays except the hospital, Sundays were a day of rest. Nowadays, we're pretty much a 24/7/365 society. This means that a vast number of people must work on Saturdays and Sundays so that the rest of us have unlimited choices of ways to entertain ourselves, or run errands. There is no shortage of 24-hour Wal-Marts, Walgreens and McDonald's drive-thrus, so we are pretty much set for any type of emergency that might arise. My own personal schedule has been crazy for so many years, that "the weekend" usually just meant another work day. I can't even remember how long it has been since I only worked one job, five days a week. I feel so blessed now to have a more "normal" schedule, even though it is still not the traditional 8-5 Monday thru Friday. If that were the case, then I might be among the ones who dread Mondays. For me, Monday mornings give me a chance to ease into the day, sleep a little later than usual, and prepare my work space for the long day ahead. I work 11:00 a.m. until 11:00 p.m., which does make for quite a long day. But it also means I have several free hours before work. That's a little bonus for me, but it is those few hours that help me not dread the day- even though it is my longest work day of the week. It has been incredibly wonderful- being off all day Fridays and Saturdays! Being off on Fridays is like having a vacation day once a week. Remember, I'm so accustomed to working six to seven days a week that working Sundays isn't anything new for me. Have I mentioned lately that I am so grateful for my job and my schedule?? Oh Yes.

All that being said, we got lots done this weekend! My old room is now completely empty, and the walls are covered with no less than four coats of Kilz. That's how I spent my Saturday evening- trying, trying to cover up the lovely forrest green paint. It's still peeping through a little bit, but The Princen will just have to pretend that any green that seeps through is the edge of The Enchanted Forest. I used an entire gallon of Kilz, broke my roller extender poll, pinched my hand (twice.. drawing blood once), and worked muscles I forgot I even had. So whatever green shows through, will just hafta stay. I'm not fighting that battle any more. (An aside note- yesterday afternoon I couldn't find The Princen. I saw the door open to her new room. When I went in there, she stood up, paintbrush in hand and said "I do it". Fortunately the brush was dry. I'm thinking it was a mistake to let her see me painting on the wall!)Whitney had found a Princen comforter that she wanted, so we decided to see if our Target had it in stock. Save on those shipping charges, ya know. We did find it in the store, but it was a full size, and we wanted twin. We asked an associate if there were any more, and to our surprise and delight.... it was on clearance for $14.99!!! They still didn't have a twin size, but for $14.99, we bought the full size and will either cut it off or just let the overhang be on the wall-side. How's that for a bargain!!! I also found a really cool wire organizer thingy with shelves and drawers on clearance at Target. I assembled it yesterday morning, and it is perfect for my bathroom! My mom came over on Saturday and sorted through clothes, separating and bagging them for attic storage. Now that my desk and bed are set up in the new room, priority one is getting Leyland's new room finished. As such, when I emptied the remaining contents of that room, everything ended up on the floor in here. Last night when I finished working, I sorted through it all, and put away a good bit of it, gathered up the trash, and put the attic-bound items together. You can see the floor now!

It was a very busy weekend, but I am pleased with the progress. Day one of my work week is behind me and this morning my Monday isn't so bad at all! Happy Monday, everyone!
Continue to remember Delores in your prayers. She goes to Tennessee on Thursday for a second opinion at the Minnie Pearl Cancer Center.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Moving Continues

My empty room is very slowly becoming populated. In a most chaotic way, mind you. The goal for today is to get my bed moved so that I can spend my first night in here tonight. The bed is stripped and ready to be taken down... but shall have to wait until after much fortification with coffee and a slice or two of cheese toast (protein to help my muscles, you know...). My dad hung the blinds yesterday, so that with a little twirl of the wand thingy, I can sheild myself from all the outside world. Now if I can only find the blinds for the window in the bathroom, I'll be all set privacy-wise. Oh yes, the gremlins are having a field day with all this madness. Things disappear almost before my very eyes. Hopefully some of the items long missing will turn up as I tackle the abyss under the bed. Who knows, I might even find Jimmy Hoffa under there cavorting with the dust bunnies. And speaking of dust. My desk has been in here less than three days and there is already a thin coat of dust on the hutch. How can that be? I'm destined to be the Queen of Dust, I suppose. I once had this little knick-knack thingy that was a little chalkboard that said "You may touch the dust, but please do not write in it." So very appropriate for my house. Dusting is such a waste of time. (As proven by the coat of dust on my desk.) DJ hates dusting as much as me, and whenever one of us does undertake the chore, we'll call the other and say "Are you sitting down?", which is the Code Phrase for- "I have taken up a cloth and dusted the furniture." Be assured the Code Phrase is not often used. Okay- back to The Move. I'm pumped today. Whitney and the kids will be gone most of the morning. I'm going to find some funky music to keep me bouncing, and as Gigi says... GET AT IT!!!!! (hold out the "get" for a long, long time). After I finish my coffee, of course.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

It's Today! It's Today!

Those are the first words to one of Leyland's favorite movies, Stuart Little. The little boy is excited because it's the day his parents are going to adopt a little brother for him. (Now if you've seen the silly movie, you know that instead they come home with a little mouse. A mouse that can talk to the people, and can talk to the cats. It always disturbs Whitney that the mouse can talk to the people, but the cats can't. Pretty much a stupid movie, but cute in a stupid kind of way.) Anyway. When we get excited about something and the big day arrives, that's what we say. "It's Today! It's Today!"


My office is officially moved into the new room! And I use the word "office" very lightly here- because right now my "office" consists of my desk, my chair, the plastic thingy on the carpet, and all the electronic gadgets and miles of wiring and cable needed to connect me to the outside world (i.e. the hospital). That's it. No drawers in the desk, no pencils or paper or sticky notes, no reference books. Just the desk, chair, plastic thingy and computers. But it is WONDERFUL! And I'm working from here today, and so very happy about it.

Hopefully by the weekend I'll have my blinds installed (ya'll know I love to work in my jammies, and I'm sitting right here in front of a big, bare window) and my bed moved. I slept on the sofa last night because my bed is piled high with all manner of things (crazy things... like a poster Whitney made in the 10th grade about her family that I just can't get rid of, reference books, the drawers from my desk, a lamp, framed photos from my desk, candles and whatever else happened to be on my desk {which included one of the mop heads from my new steam mop, nail polish remover, a lint roller, a bowl of very old candy, envelopes and stationary for Dr. F, my 2007 tax papers, my prescription medications, some of Leyland's DVDs, dental floss, one of DJs books, a Passport external hard drive, photograph CDs... you know, just the everyday stuff you'd find on your desk....} )and I was too tired to clean it off. So I'm looking forward to getting back into my comfy bed soon. Sleeping on the sofa for more than one night just doesn't cut it. Anyhoo... just wanted to post that I am now working from the new office!
And might I just add.... YIPEEEEEE!!!!!!

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Almost There...

Friday marked the completion of the construction phase of my room. It is FABulous. The paint has dried, the water is flowing, the lights are burning, and the ceiling fan is quietly whirring. The cable man comes tomorrow (Monday) morning for the tv/internet box installation, and the carpet goes down on Tuesday. Woo Hoo!! After that I can begin the migration to my new room. Earlier this week my mom asked me if I had started "packing". I had to just laugh, and remind her that even if I did pack up my stuff, there would be nowhere to put it. We'll just carry everything out of this room piece by piece, hanger by hanger, trash bag by trash bag. I hope to begin that task on Tuesday, when my work shift is over. My goal is to have my desk set up by Saturday evening so that I can begin my Sunday shift in the new office. That will give me most of the week, all day Friday and all day Saturday to accomplish that goal (which I must admit, at this moment feels a bit overwhelming.) The following week I plan to work in this current room, which will become Leyland's room. I think Whitney and I have decided to go with the pink/purple princess thing. Leyland's favorite color is pink, and whenever she is playing with the coloring books, she always has to have the pink crayon. And she's into the princess thing too. The other day Randy told her to do something- like pick up a toy or whatever it was- to which she politely shook her head "no" and said "unhh uhh. [no]. I'm a princen." Princen. That's how she says princess. Isn't that cute! {Well, the "no" part isn't so cute, but that's the two-year-old challenge that we're dealing with nowadays.} Randy had to bite his lip to keep from laughing, but he was able to keep a straight face. As a bonus, while I was out shopping this weekend for blinds and door stops and outlet covers and other such various and sundry (for you Whit) items, I happened upon a package of wall decals that had been reduced by about 70%, and of all things... it was Princen Stuff!!! We weren't going to take the time or money to paint Leyland's room, but I think we're going to go ahead and do it whilethere will be no furniture in here. A princen room for our sweet little princen. Anyhoo... it's looking like things are falling into place, and though the next few weeks will be super busy, I'm pumped up and ready to get it done. I'll post pictures when I can.

Friday's Scrappin' At The Church was a lot of fun. Not very productive for some of us, but the company and food are always a treat. I did get some ideas for wall art in some of the Cricut booklets, and hope to use them in The Princen Room. I think my total pages completed was a whopping FOUR. And I'm not even all the way finished with my last LO! Oh well. It was a fun evening all the same. At least by having unfinished pages, I won't have to worry about finding my starting point next time, and by the time they are completed, maybe my creative juices will be flowing and I can finish Corey's Birth Album. Yipeee!!!

Please say prayers for Delores, as she should be hearing from the Minnie Pearl Cancer Center in Tennessee this week, and also for Miss Jean, who has been diagnosed with lung cancer, as she undergoes further investigation. Her options are extremely limited, and she needs our prayers.

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Pawpoo Turns 80!

Happy Birthday Pawpoo!!! Today marks the 80th birthday of my fomer (but always) father-in-law, Herb. Saturday night we celebrated with a family gathering at Norma's house (sister-in-law). Pawpoo's two remaining living siblings and their wives were able to join us. It was a lovely party! Pawpoo, I hope you have a wonderful birthday!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Fort Yargo

Sunday Whit and Dustin took the babies to the park, where a marvelous time was had by all. She called to tell me a really funny story... but she alarmed me when she said.. "Let me preface it by saying that everyone is okay...." Goodness gracious.. my heart was pounding! At any rate, I was forbidden to blog about it until she got the chance to. She accuses me of beating her to the punch and blogging the baby stories (could it be because I have no life of my own????)... so I have obliged her and refrained from telling the funny story. Therefore, in an effort to save my poor overworked fingers some typing, I'll just link you to the story. Click here for a really funny story, some precious photos and a couple of short videos to enhance your imagination.

Birthday Greetings go out today to Whitney's dad Randy. Happy Birthday Papa!!!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Update: Extreme Makeover, Carport Edition

Finally, I'm posting some pictures of the carport makeover. I'm so excited! We've gone from a cluttered carport to an almost-complete living/working space! Today the first coat of paint was applied, the lighting installed, the bathroom fixtures installed and some of the trim painted. The attic has been insulated, and a tiny little personal-sized deck (porch) with steps has been built so I don't have to pole vault my way inside from the driveway. It's coming together very nicely, and I can't wait to "move" in. Here are the photos:


Saturday, February 7, 2009


Well, actually it's Saturday. I am feeling quite refreshed this morning! Though it was late when I finally went to sleep last night (ummm actually this morning- last time I looked it was 1:05 a.m.), I slept until 9:30 this morning! And I probably would still be asleep if Mr. Buddy hadn't rang the doorbell! It was wonderful! And the best part of all, I didn't wake up with a headache. Usually when I sleep in, I wake up with a nagging headache, that if I can't get rid of quickly, will linger with me most of the day. So I'm taking that as a sign: today will be a good day! I need for it to be a very productive day. But back to yesterday. Yesterday was a good day. I watched the munchkins while Whitney went for a dental appointment. [Now I'm feeling really old these days- the dentist she saw is a "little boy" that I knew back in the early 80s. His parents are best friends with Nany and Pawpoo, and I used to tease him about 'chitlins'- though memory fails me as to why. Anyway, that he is old enough to have gone through a gazillion years of college and has been in practice for a few years makes me feel old.] Okay. I keep getting off track about yesterday. I put in a couple of hours with the hospital to make up for being out on Wednesday afternoon. I am pleased with my productivity for this pay period, and look forward to payday next week! I worked a tiny bit on my Dave financial plan for the next month, and anticipate getting my tax stuff together sometime today so Miss Shirley can send in my returns. After all that, I took the afternoon to run some errands in Athens. I had skipped lunch and by around 4:00 I was ready to eat my own fists, so I decided to go to Ryan's and have myself a little graze-fest. I called Terri at AOA to see if she would join me, and we had a lovely visit over hot yeast rolls, salad, barbeque, steak and a tater. Well, I'm not sure what she ate, I was so busy salivating all over myself, literally chomping at the bit to get some food in my mouth. It was yummy. Still nowhere near a David steak, but it was truly yummy. I think chocolate-covered chitlins would have been good to me by that time! I picked up some Valentine goodies for the babies, got myself a bargain on some Skechers clog-like shoes at Goody's (boo hoo- they are closing their stores), and walked around a while in Hobby Lobby. Didn't buy anything in there, though. When I got home, Leyland and I played with her new crayons and color book til bedtime. Whitney, Dustin and Corey went to visit some friends. Sweet little munchkin when to bed without a peep. Friday was a good day. Today has started off on a lovely note (see sentence #2), and I'm hoping to get lots done today. My coffee is ready, I'm fixin' to make some cheese toast for Leyland and me, the washer and dryer are going already, and several loads of clean laundry await their folding on my bed. Yes, I think it will be a good day.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Miss Pat

Yesterday we attended the service to celebrate the life and homegoing of Miss Pat. It was a very lovely service. I didn't see her often, but she was always "there", ya know? My mom talked to her every few days, and in fact, had just spent the evening with her a few days before she died. I knew that it would be especially hard on my mom, but I didn't really expect to feel such an empty place in my own heart. There has been a spiritual matter that I have longed to understand for many years now (worthy of its own post at a later time). I have asked many people about it including my pastor, other pastors, and other believers. I am reading a book on the subject, where the author had the same questions as me. Now I sit here and wonder how come I never asked Miss Pat? Would she have known the answer? Probably not... it is one of the great mysteries of faith, I believe, but now that she is gone, I am wishing that I could sit and talk with her one more time. To laugh and reminisce about all the things we've seen, heard, and done over the years, and to get her take on this issue that puzzles me so. It's odd. When someone dies, we speak of our belief that he/she has "gone to heaven". Always before, that's pretty much where I would leave it... but it was so strange the other day when I just had this feeling, or this vision, if you will, about Miss Pat's arrival. No, I didn't see pearly gates or streets paved with gold. I didn't see Jesus, or a crystal sea. I know her body is buried in the ground, and the face we love wasn't what arrived in heaven. But that's how I know her, and it was her beautiful face that I imagined I saw... her mouth open in wonder, her eyes sparkling with tears of joy, and that laugh... I could just imagine hearing her say "Wow!!!!!!" I can remember her singsong way of saying "I didn't know thaaaaat" when she'd hear a bit of news or learn something new. I'll bet she's finding out a lot of things now that she didn't know! She was the epitome of a faithful servant. A True North. A guiding compass who will be sorely missed. I am comforted, though, and delighted by my personal, special, amazing "vision".

Monday, February 2, 2009

Octopulets [Edited]

Just watch the news for the latest update on the octuplet babies. What a miracle! Even the conception, development and birth of one baby is a miracle that boggles the mind. That a woman could possibly carry within her womb eight babies is difficult for me to grasp. Any mother will tell you that even carrying one child to term is most uncomfortable. I can't imagine eight. I truly believe that there are no "accident" babies, and that God has a plan for each life. However, this case causes us to examine the social implications of this particular situation. While I am delighted that the babies are doing so well, I can't help but wonder what life will have in store for them. There is still much that we don't know about this family, and while it is easy to cast stones and judge, there is also an element of compassion, for me, at least. This young woman obviously has some psychological issues, and hopefully she will receive the help she needs. Normally, the birth of multiples results in all manner of freebies and sponsorships for diapers, baby formula, and the like. I rather doubt that this will be the case for these babies. This is unfortunate, because the babies will need these things no less than other babies, but likely have no resources. At least not the glamorous ones. I am watching with interest to see what will be revealed about the physician who performed the procedure. I know very little about IVF or the use of fertility drugs. I do know it is a very expensive process. Who is this physician, and why in the world did he think it appropriate to do this procedure? His license should be revoked. Plain and simple. I've been in health care for 32 years. Oh the changes I have seen! One of many factors of why the system is in such a deplorable state is the staggering amount of indigent care. Of course, everyone is entitled to health care. But to purposefully bring EIGHT babies into the world, even in the best of situations, puts a huge burden on the health care system. One report I saw was that it costs $800,000.00 per day, per baby for every day they are in the NICU. That's SIX MILLION, FOUR HUNDRED THOUSAND dollars a day. One month is $192,000,000.00. That is 192 million dollars. [Edited to add: I did hear those numbers somewhere, I was thinking GMA, but perhaps I misunderstood and it is 800,000.00 a day for all the babies. Which is still a pile of money!! I hope my original quoted figures are incorrect.] Am I complaining about the cost of keeping these babies alive? Absolutely not. They are precious little lives, and now that they are here, deserve every opportunity to live and grow. I am complaining about the fact that this single mother, already with six children to raise without a father, would consider herself physically or mentally capable of caring for even ONE more baby. Living with her parents in a 3 bedroom house. Now her dad is going back to Iraq to earn some money for the family, and her mom says when Nadya returns from the hospital she (mom) will leave. You gotta just love those little babies, and hope the best for them. In my unsolicited opinion, there are three things that need to happen here. 1) The physician who performed this procedure should lose his license to practice medicine. Forever. 2) Nadya should undergo psychiatric evaluation. 3) These babies should be put up for adoption. I mean, how can they ever receive proper care? It would be worse than negligence or abuse to allow these babies to go home with their mother. We shake our heads in disbelief when we see on the news that an old lady has 47 cats in her house, and all manner of authorities get involved in the case. How much more tragic would it be for one mom (with obvious issues!) to care for 14 children, eight of them likely needing special care for a long time coming. Her parents already lost their own home, after buying a house for Nadya, the house where they now live. What will happen when they lose this home too?

Again- I do believe that every life has a purpose, and I know that God has something for these babies, as He does for every baby. It's hard to reconcile the two trains of thought- that this shouldn't have happened, and that God has a plan. I know it sounds contradictory. And I don't have the answer. I'll be watching this story with interest.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


My mom called this morning with some terrible news. Her best friend, Pat, died last night. We are just stunned. It doesn't seem real. Miss Pat has been a fixture in my life since my early teen years, when she taught my Sunday School class. Her oldest son and my brother were best friends and are still close today. She and my mom have been close like sisters for many, many years. She is family. I remember during our turbulent mother/teenage-daughter years, many was the time that I would call Miss Pat and cry and vent, and she would calm me. Other times, when my mom would be going through especially tough times, I would call Miss Pat, who would always be there for my mom. She was one of the finest ladies I have ever known. She and her husband, Mr. Bobby, were able to live their dream- even though for a short while- they both have a heart for mission work, and for a while they lived in their camper down on the coast. I don't remember the details, but it was some kind of mission at a seaport where men coming off the freighter boats could go. If I remember correctly, health issues called them back home, but they have always been hard workers in the church and just a delight to anyone who knows them.

I don't know any details surrounding the incident last night, other than she had a stroke, and the doctors did all they could do to save her. My mom was just too upset to get any other information. This will be tough on so many people. Mr. Bobby lost his dad not so very long ago, and is still grieving from that. Miss Pat was his princess, and he adored her the way every woman would want to be adored by her husband. He will need our prayers in a fierce kind of way. Though my mom hasn't fully absorbed the news, this will be tough on her too. Years ago she lost another best friend when Miss Carolyn suffered a stroke-like illness, and the family actually had to make the terrible decision to disconnect life support and let her go. She was devastated by that, but at least spent some time with her and was able to tell her goodbye before they disconnected her. I know that Miss Pat would much rather be with Jesus today than live on, not able to care for herself, or in a vegetative state. None of us would ever want that, but she worked in a nursing home for many years, and saw people like that every day.
Please keep her family (Mr. Bobby, BJ & Teresa and children, Russell & Michelle and children) and all those who loved her, in your prayers. And as I always say... if you love someone, be sure to tell them. Today if possible!